Archive for the ‘letters of reproof’ Category

Another gem from Miss Wagner as part of the ‘lucky dip’ letter writing exercise at a DLO workshop. Miss Wagner selected a scenario about writing to someone who is about to make a bad choice. Miss Jolie seemed to fit into that category. Miss Wagner used a standard line in advice letters, which is useful for added diplomacy. See if you can pick it! Miss Jolie has not yet responded to Miss Wagner’s concerned epistle. She must be very busy indeed.

I’m not sure the marriage congratulations are quite appropriate. I think Miss Wagner is a bit behind the times, Ms Jolie and Mr Pitt wedded many years ago now.  

Dear Miss Jolie,

You do not know me – I don’t think, at least, but I am a very great fan of your work. My favourite movie of yours is Girl Interrupted.

I ask you to reconsider your decision to adopt your 7th child. You say in Womans Weekly (18/05/10) that you ‘are attracted to children who are already born.’  This may be so, and I can well understand it, but it does not follow that you will be able to give that child the care and attention it needs.

How is it that you did not perceive this immediately, since you usually see so clearly and judge so correctly?

But belated congratulations on your marriage to Mr Pitt.

Yours most respectfully,

Dolores Wagner (Miss)


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Miss Beeton was recently invited to play at a musical recital, organised by her brother.  To her dismay, she has realised that her brother advertised this as an open event on Facebook.  Added to this, the venue is the cellar under her brother’s house, accessed via a large trapdoor and a three metre ladder.  Miss Beeton writes to caution her brother as to the safety of this scheme.

To my dear brother

How pleased I was to receive your invitation to your musical soiree!  I would be honoured to join your quartet.

Only one thing mars the pleasure of your happy invitation.  I note that you have publicised this Friday’s festivities as an open event on Facebook.  While I am, as much as any other, a fan of a raucous party, I find the logistics of this event a little troubling.  What measures have you taken to ensure that this event does not get out of hand?  More importantly, how will you prevent tipsy visitors from toppling into your trapdoor?

I do not mean to dissuade you from hosting these musical events, my dear brother.  I know you to be a man of tact and thoughtfulness, so I trust that you will consider these issues and take measures to ensure the safety of your guests. 

I enclose a small poem on the nature of music that you may find amusing.

The man that hath no music in himself,
Nor is not moved with concord of sweet sounds,
Is fit for treasons, stratagems and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night
And his affections dark as Erebus:
Let no such man be trusted.

(from The Merchant of Venice)

I remain, as always, yours truly

Ethel May

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