Chain Letters: Ugh!

Lounge By mcaulir Updated 5 Aug 2009 , 6:55pm by dldbrou

mcaulir Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 11:29am
post #1 of 19

On the day I posted off a gift for my best friend's 4-year-old son's birthday, which always includes a book, I received a chain letter from her which asked me to send a book to a child at the top of the list and please send it on to six of my friends.

I hate chain letters. Not only am I supposed to spend money on a gift for some child I've never met, then I'm supposed to harrass more of my friends and relatives to spend money for children they've never met, in the unlikely event that my child might receive a book.

The worst part was that it guilted me by saying, "It wouldn't be fair to the child if the link was broken" (but apparantly it's fair to guilt me into spending money), and that it claimed to be part of a literacy initiative to get my child interested in books.

If I want to interest my child in books, I'll read to her every day, take her to the library, buy her books myself etc. I don't think she'll magically become interested in books because she received on in the mail from a total stranger one day when she was three months old!

Rant over. As you were.

18 replies
indydebi Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 12:23pm
post #2 of 19

I always wonder why people even start these things. they always end up in the trash.

Mensch Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 12:39pm
post #3 of 19

I always throw them away (and with NO guilt feelings, I might add).

There are many other (more worthwhile) ways to promote literacy and love of reading.

indydebi Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 12:55pm
post #4 of 19

Reading is BIG in my house. I'm a speed reader, myself. (No Evelyn Wood classes .... I just could always read fast). Hubby is an avid reader. We cleaned out our books one day. Gave away over 300 books and STILL had 7 bookcases, 5 shelves each, filled with books that were double-rowed and double stacked. We teach our kids that "if you can read, you can do ANYTHING!" I became a trained adult literacy instructor some years ago.

But what I wanted to share was an article we read about getting kids to read.

Did you know.......?

That children who OBSERVE their parents reading .... not children who read at a young age; not children who are read to; but children who just SEE their parents sitting around reading ..... will have better reading skills than the norm?

THe age old reasoning of setting a good example.

It bothers me a LOT when I go into a house and I dont' see any books or magazines anywhere. That really, REALLY bothers me. Their children are not taught that reading is important. (HEck, I keep 2 paperbacks in the van in case I get caught in traffic!)

Sorry to detrail this thread a bit, but reading is one of those subject that I get really passionate about!

Texas_Rose Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 1:07pm
post #5 of 19

I've never gotten a chain letter. I remember my mom getting them all the time, but I've never had one. The only people who have our address are the ones who have to have, drs office, etc...I'm getting a little embarrassed realizing how antisocial I am.

Anyhow, about reading...I've been buying books since my oldest daughter was a month old. I probably have 500 childrens books (not to mention the 4 bookcases of grownup books we have). I have read them all icon_biggrin.gif and liked them, but my daughter who should be following my example is a painfully slow reader and only reads when school makes her. I can't even get her to read packages at the store. I haven't pushed reading on the little one who's about to turn 4, and she already knows her alphabet and can tell the stories of probably 50 books even if she can't read all the words. I think some people are just readers and others aren't. My 7 year old who doesn't like to read is content to watch a movie over and over, but my 4 year old will only watch it once and after that she says it's boring.

indydebi Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 1:14pm
post #6 of 19

Texas, at some point, you'll realize what she's interested in that that will spark her reading. My oldest really started getting into reading at about 13 or 14, when she was introduced to Stephen King's "Carrie". Her lit teacher just hated that book, but told us, "as long as it gets them reading, I dont' care what it is".

My son got into reading when he discovered Captain Underpants books and some other pre-teen sci-fi stories. He had the whole collection of both of these.

Encyclopedia Brown stories are great for kids. Gets them reading AND thinking. I started a nephew on this collection when he was about 8 and he fell in love with them. (Encyclo Brown is a really smart kid who figures out little "mysteries" in the neighborhood. I stlll like reading them!)

Last Christmas, we got our 5 year old granddaughter a CASE of classics ... Tom Sawyer, Alicein Wonderland, etc). She opened them and thought she had a case of DVD'S!!! hahahahaha!

brincess_b Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 1:21pm
post #7 of 19

i always have a book in my bag. drs surgeries arent so boring any more!
my parents and me always read lots, but my brother would never pic up a book for the pleasure of it.
my and my bf moved into our flat a year ago and still have boxes of books elsewhere that we cant make room for!

but to return to chain letters, i hate them. i know they are rubbish, but part of me still feels guilty for breaking the chain - not for the chain, but the threat of what will happen! havent had a letter since high school, but i quite often get emails. which just get deleted!

Mensch Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 1:22pm
post #8 of 19

We have nineteen bookcases.... all full and with books stuffed in any which way. I often go to the flea market or a garage sale and scour for books!

Texas_Rose Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 1:31pm
post #9 of 19

Once a month we go to the bookstore at the downtown library, where they sell kids books for a quarter and paperbacks for 50 cents (except the trashy romance novels which are only a quarter icon_biggrin.gif) so we end up with a new box of books every month. All of my bookcases already have double rows and I told myself I couldn't have any more bookcases. So I make myself fill up the box with books we're done with and then I give them away on craigslist.

Lately I've been buying the kids' series books hoping something will catch my daughter's interest...we've got a lot of Junie B. Jones, Goosebumps, Magic Treehouse, and a few others I can't think of yet. I leave books in her bathroom hoping that she'll get bored in there and pick up a book...but usually what happens is that I can't get out of the bathroom until I've finished the book icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif Good thing I read fast.

indydebi Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 1:39pm
post #10 of 19

GOOSEBUMPS! THAT was the other book series my son loved!

We were selling a house once and the realtor said the poeple who came in for the open house were more impressed with the number of books AND that they were alphabetical by author than they were with the house. (Lesson? What they say on HGTV is true .... declutter the house so they notice the HOUSE and not your BOOKS!) We had to keep them alpha by author ... too many times we bought the same book over again because we forgot we already owned it! icon_redface.gif

We box up our surplus ones and take them to a used bookstore who buys them. I think we got over $75 from our last load.

Jen80 Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 1:40pm
post #11 of 19
Originally Posted by indydebi

"if you can read, you can do ANYTHING!"

I agree!

Although, I think that some of the parents who have children on that list would be grateful that a few people didn't keep it going.

That would end up being thousands of books for each child in a very short time.

Please correct me if I'm wrong but, if the first child was crossed off the list once you had sent your book and if everyone down the line participated wouldn't it end up like this?:

1st Child: 6 books
2nd: 36
3rd: 216
4th: 1296
5th: 7776
6th: 46 656
7th: 279 936
8th: 1 679 616
9th: 10 077 696
10th: 60 466 176


Now I love my kids but I'm not gonna let them have that much book space. icon_lol.gif

I don't like chain letters either and I think it is very rude for your friend to ask you to spend money on a child that you don't even know.

Texas_Rose Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 1:44pm
post #12 of 19

The bookstore here who buys books gives about $5 for three boxes of paperbacks in good shape. So giving them away instead is kind of my silent protest. I could probably sell them on craigslist instead of giving them away but selling things on craigslist involves endless email tag, people wanting to bargain you down $20 on a $25 item, asking you to deliver to another city, etc...(sorry, my husband is making me try to sell some of our junk on craigslist and it's getting to me).

funcakes Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 3:05pm
post #13 of 19

I hate chain letters. A few people I work with have me on their list, so every month or so I get another one...ending with expect something wonderful to happen 15 minutes after sending, or something about angles. I never send them on and yet I never get off the list.
The most confusing one was a chain letter containing the new year's message from the dalai lama. (not sent from a practicing buddhist) Beautiful message, about noticing beauty in nature and ultimate compassion. That's nice I thought.....and the end...the letter stated that anyone who failed to send the letter on within 30 minutes would have bad luck and negative things would happen to them. OMG did they MISS the point in the whole message or what?

Tiffany29 Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 4:22pm
post #14 of 19

I don't like chainletters either. In the trash they go! I do teach my kids that reading is very important. I work with them alot. My son is going into 1st grade in a few weeks. In kindergarten he really learned how to read well. They checked out a book at the library for one week which we read everynight and at the end of the week we had to do like a mini book report. They sent home a paper that had a few questions on what the book was called, if they liked the book or not, how long it took to read, who read it with them and to name a character in the book. Then on the back there were 3 boxes and he had to draw a pic of the begining, middle, and end of the story and write a sentence about each pic. Also during the week (2-3 times) the teacher would send home little 6-8 page books for them to read. They also have to know certain words (sight words: like,an,is,so,the) there are about 20 words. When I realized he was reading more than 2-3 word sentences we were at a store (consignment shop). We were checking out and I heard him tell his little sister ,"these are free toys." so I looked and asked him how he knew and he said "Well, it says free toys please take one." icon_lol.gif

__Jamie__ Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 4:41pm
post #15 of 19
Originally Posted by indydebi

I always wonder why people even start these things. they always end up in the trash.

You mean a real letter? On paper? icon_eek.gif Man, I can't delete crap like that out of my inbox fast enough, but a real live letter????

mcaulir Posted 2 Aug 2009 , 10:48pm
post #16 of 19
Originally Posted by __Jamie__

Originally Posted by indydebi

I always wonder why people even start these things. they always end up in the trash.

You mean a real letter? On paper? icon_eek.gif Man, I can't delete crap like that out of my inbox fast enough, but a real live letter????

Yep, real letter. I can't get over that so many people must have bothered to photocopy, handwrite names and addresses 6 times, envelope, stamp and post all these letters. And obviously people do it, or it wouldn't get to me!

We have boxes and boxes of books, bub has a shelf full in her room already, and I think I hve about 10 near my bed in various stages of being read. My husband and I bot get sick of tripping over books all over the house, and we're on first name ters with all the people who work at our local library. We really don't need people sending us more books!

-Tubbs Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 3:33am
post #17 of 19

My friend passed on a chain letter for PANTIES!! You had to add your name and SIZE to the bottom of the list and in a few weeks you'd get a bunch of panties sent to you. I can't think of anything more hideous than having a load of strangers knowing my underwear size!!

Naturally, I binned it.

JaimeAnn Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 8:58am
post #18 of 19
Originally Posted by TubbsCookies

My friend passed on a chain letter for PANTIES!! You had to add your name and SIZE to the bottom of the list and in a few weeks you'd get a bunch of panties sent to you. I can't think of anything more hideous than having a load of strangers knowing my underwear size!!

Naturally, I binned it.

Hahhahah I saw this one before too!

My Sister sent it to me. I called her and told her if she ever sent me one of those again I was gonna collect all the panties and shove them down her throat!. LOL

I darn sure don't need anyone's help buying my panties.

There is another one that I saw that says send $1 to 10 people and so on and so on..

dldbrou Posted 5 Aug 2009 , 6:55pm
post #19 of 19

I own a Mac computer and have the option to Bounce the letters back to them. That way they get a message of a bad email address and they won't send any more.

Books, from the time my son came home from the hospital, I would read to him every night and day. Then he got the bug and would read to himself after we would read a book together at night. When he was in 3rd grade he was reading books like J. R. Token. He had an eleventh grade reading level in third grade and understood whatever he read.

Recently he got married and bought a house and remodeled it and made sure that he had enough book shelves to keep all of his books and his wifes' books. She is also an avid reader.

Now they are expecting a baby in November and I got to take out all his baby books plus I have been hitting the stores for new ones.

My husband is the odd one out. He rarely picks up a book to read or a magazine.

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