Fwd: Comment--My Best Christmas Present

Subject: Fwd: Comment--My Best Christmas Present
From: AnnMacknz <AnnMacknz -at- AOL -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 14:53:30 EST

Hi All -

Remember the thread of a week or so ago when writers were fiercely debating
whether postings on the net would be fair game when looking for a job or
employee? I'm going to remember the name of Chris Tonjes just enough to be
sure not to get into a working situation with it.

Response to private post attached.

--- Begin Message ---

Subject: Re: Comment--My Best Christmas Present
From: "Chris Tonjes" <ctonjes -at- mindspring -dot- com>
To: "AnnMacknz" <AnnMacknz -at- aol -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 23 Dec 1997 21:42:21 -0500

Dear Miss Macknz,

My apology if your surname is not actually Macknz, however Macknz is what
appears at the top of your kind response to my post of 22 December. Perhaps
it IS your surname and you are of Scottish/Polish descent. This would
explain your school-marmish code of decorum, along with your fierce loyalty
to the amorphous pack of mediocrities whose sensibilities you seek to

I am somewhat confused about the nature of my transgression. I must ask you
in all seriousness a question: Do you think that Ms. Moore's best christmas
present is the knowledge that a low level civil servant reads instructional
manuals? If so, does this strike you as pathetic? While I certainly respect
those who are fanatically dedicated to their work, I have great sympathy for
anyone who is besotted with yuletide sentiment upon hearing the news that
tax-fattened sinecure holders read instructional manuals.

I must confess that I believe Ms. Moore was not speaking truthfully.
Certainly she has, or will have, had better holiday moments. I think she was
premature in her remarks. In fact, they were silly. From anyone's
perspective, Christmas has nothing to do with technical writing. No one's
best Christmas moment has anything to do with instructional manuals, the
tech writer listserv, or any of the minutae it encapsulates.

I assume from your membership in the listserv that you are somehow involved
in the writing profession. In my experience, the best writers are also
careful readers. If you go back to my original post it contains certain
nuances which could be described as IRONIC, or perhaps even SARDONIC. If you
parse it carefully, you may find them.

Of course if you are a native Polish speaker you'll find these nuances
difficult to grasp. In that case, I'd be happy to recast my reaction to Ms.
Moore's breathless holiday blither in simpler terms.

In the year 1981 I was in high school with several Scottish exchange
students. More than once they jokingly tried to get me to eat haggis.
Revolting stuff, that. Boiled sheep entrails or no, I'm afraid I cannot
satisfy your request for an apology.

-----Original Message-----
From: AnnMacknz <AnnMacknz -at- aol -dot- com>
To: ctonjes -at- MINDSPRING -dot- COM <ctonjes -at- MINDSPRING -dot- COM>
Date: Tuesday, December 23, 1997 6:50 PM
Subject: Re: Comment--My Best Christmas Present

>Chris -
>You were unkind to Susan and owe her, and the whole list, since you decided
>publish, an apology.

--- End Message ---

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