Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Best Thank-You Note

Several weeks ago I decided to surprise Boy one evening by secretly inviting two friends of ours, Lowell and Courtney, to join us at a cooking class held one evening by the inestimable Gail Monaghan here in New York.  Gail, a cookbook author and all around genius in the kitchen, teaches cooking classes out of her art-filled loft in lower Manhattan, and also runs luxurious culinary tours of exotic locales.  I plan on featuring Gail and one of her cooking classes in a future posting. 

I invited Lowell and Courtney to join us as a surprise treat for Boy, since we both enjoy their company, and I thought that they would appreciate meeting Gail and joining us at one of her classes.  We had a lovely time with Lowell and Courtney that evening, and they hit it off with Gail as well, with whom they share a love of cooking and contemporary art. 

Shortly after attending the class we received a thank-you note written by Lowell that stands out, in my mind, as exemplifying the craft of such missives, and which I am sharing with you, Gentle Reader, as an example of that which to aspire to when writing such communiqués.

So what is so noteworthy (pun intended) of this note?
  • It appeared in our mailbox within days of the associated event;
  • It was handwritten on heavy, handsome card stock;
  • It was cleverly written and appropriately flattering to the recipients;
  • It was amusing; and
  • It was short and to the point.
All in all, it is one of the best thank-you notes that I have received in a long time.  Gentle Reader, I commend it to you as an example to aspire to when writing such notes when you have been the happy recipient of a host's hospitality.  Following its format will ensure that its reader will remember your acknowledgement and good manners with pleasure, and will favorably incline them to invite you, again, to future festivities.  It is a gold-star example of such missives and the successful realization of rule number one of Reggie's Rules of Social Reciprocity.

This is not the first time that Lowell and Courtney have been referred to on Reggie Darling; you can read more about them in a post I did here.


  1. We have a friend who writes the best thank you notes -- they are inspiring as well. Alas, thank you notes are often the forgotten correspondence --- and thanking in person or by email does not suffice!!!!

  2. I'm always stunned by how many people are amazed when I send a thank you note within a day or two of an event. "You were certainly raised right," they exclaim. I’m not certain it is a matter of being raised “right” but rather being raised civilized. Being raised “right” implies some intrinsic knowledge which is then passed along through generations and conjures up images of the “Rights” and the “Wrongs”, the “Haves” and “Have Nots”. Acting civilized is as simple as treating other human beings well – the same if not better than you would want to be treated yourself. It should not be hemmed in by lineage or pecuniary boundaries. I was leaving a shop just the other day when a young man, approximate 10 years of age, held open the door and allowed me to pass though before entering the building. I was shocked by his behavior primarily because children today rarely exhibit such polite acts (he was positively the little gentleman!). What I found interesting is that he did not fit within the “assumed” socio-economic strata commonly, and erroneously, associated with “proper breeding”.


  3. Thank you notes make all the difference...I must remember to be better at them! xv

  4. And Reg- you clearly take your own advice- thank you.

    Shorty sends love.


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