I suppose this shouldn't be too surprising, but now along with term papers and resumes, you can also buy love letters online. Can't get the right words down on the page for your sweetheart? Fear not. For $24.95 a year, you can join a service called LetterRep.com where you will have access to hundreds of possible letters for almost all occasions in life. Of course, there are a lot more than just love letters here, but the love letters are frankly the most entertaining. It takes a courageous person indeed to try using a plagiarized love letter from the Internet, rather than the real thing.
Here's just one example:
"Mi Amor: Before my thoughts of you escape me, I have to stop and take time to write the feelings I have from a special room inside my heart. There have been times when we have been together and I have missed my chance to --"
Chance to? Um, chance to what? Unfortunately, that's where the free sample ends. Unless I'm willing to shell out $24.95, I will never be able to tell my girlfriend how a stranger thinks I might feel about her.
Then again, this might not be the best letter for me to use. If I were ever to tell her that there's a special room inside my heart, she would probably ask me if that's where all the voices I hear come from.
There's also an apology letter to your lover, which unwisely doesn't begin with the words "I'm sorry." Instead, it starts off with something about looking outside the window and seeing the sun when you expected to see the rain. Something tells me that that's not going to cut it in most relationships. A few too many letters like this, and you're likely to find yourself on the other side of that window, standing in the rain with all your possessions.
Of course, there's more than just love here. There are also plenty of letters that you can use at the workplace. You can learn how to reprimand "an office for unsatisfactory behavior" (such as not writing their own letters), learn how to apologize to your boss for misconduct while "offering no excuse for the misconduct," or simply submit a letter "requesting to carry a handgun for work purposes." That last one could come in handy in many an office.
"Henderson, I want that report on my desk by five o'clock or else!"
Letterrep.com is a great resource for kids too. Here, you can find a sample letter to Santa, in case your six-year old can't quite come up with the words but has Internet access. (Can you get on Santa's bad list for plagiarism?) And in case you need it, you can find a sample letter from Santa to your child. "I'm terribly sorry, Billy, but we seem to be all out of bazooka guns and fireworks. Please accept these nice corduroys instead."
There's also a very handy letter for "explaining why your child missed school." It's a shame really. Back in my day, not only did we have to forge our parent's signature, we also had to write the letter ourselves. Now, the kids can find them online, and probably even send them from their parent's e-mail account. Seriously, what kind of values is a site like this teaching our children?
Admittedly, the site's not complete. There are many types of letters missing. For example, I could not find any apology letter whatsoever in case you get arrested for drunk driving and wind up insulting the religion and/or nationality of the arresting officer. I guess you have to pay more than $25 for an apology like that.
Also, while they have a personal essay section (just the thing for those pesky college applications), there is a disturbing lack of computer technology articles, meaning unfortunately I had to write this whole piece myself.
Another site called libraryonline.com is even more extensive, but pricier. There are a number of plans, though the all-inclusive one costs $99 a year. It's a good gig they've got going. After all, if you've been using the service for a year and impressing all your friends, lovers, and co-workers with your epistolary skills, you really have no choice but to sign up for another year. Otherwise, you risk letting everyone find out that you're really just a fraud.
Library Online has an even more extensive collection of love letters. One starts, "I struggle to find the words." Well, no kidding. Really, unless you're paying a romantic guy with a big nose to write love letters, you're best off writing them yourself. Still, one wonders what kind of money Cyrano de Bergerac could make with his love letters here in the age of the Internet.
Then again, unlike Library Online, he probably couldn't come up with such heart-warming classics as:
- "Our pregnancy [is] causing distance"
- "Will end my marriage for you"
- "A letter to the family of a person you had an affair with, apologizing for all the trouble it has now caused members of the family."
- "A letter to your friend who has betrayed you by lying about the affair he's/she's been having with your ex!"
Really, every possible facet of a relationship is covered here, that is, if you happen to live in a soap opera. If you're lucky, someday you might even be able to program some of these onto your BlackBerry, in case you're ever caught off-guard with a situation. As nice as a letter is, sometimes you need to say something in person.
Well, in that case, they might want to expand the site slightly to include other gems such as, "This isn't what it looks like," "I wasn't looking at her. I just have something in my eye," and "I'm terribly sorry. I didn't realize she was your sister."
As we all know, the Internet is the perfect resource for scoundrels everywhere, and you can definitely quote me on that.