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Dear Pen Pal

Charlie Brown, from the Peanuts comic, had a pen pal. It became a running joke that hadn’t really been funny the first time. Every so often, he would sit at a table, tongue industriously poking from one corner of his mouth, and explain to his pen pal that he would doggedly continue to use a fountain pen despite his inability to master the thing because, after all, he didn’t have a “pencil pal.” The writing appeared, complete with smudges, over his head for the reader to enjoy, and the strip always ended with a disastrous blot over everything, Charlie Brown included.

After a long sabbatical, I feel like Charlie Brown looked, taking up a habit more out of a sense of duty than pleasure. I stopped writing back then because I was cutting corners, writing out of date, repeating myself intentionally or unintentionally or uncontrollably, all because I’d run out of things to say. Things to say on a daily basis, anyway.

Now, like Charlie Brown, I’m again opening a conversation with a nameless, faceless audience, to find whether I again have something to say. Oh, I can for a while discuss the highlights of the past few weeks, but that’s not the same thing as having something to say. Oh, and also again to test whether I can master the fountain pen. Or, this being the 21st century, basic internet protocol. The latter is not a safe bet, honestly.

For the sake of my audience, I hope my blotches, at least, are more entertaining than the antiquated Peanuts strip.

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