Image from Inspiration Resource
I was reading a P.G. Wodehouse book the other day and fell upon a part in the book where the main character Jimmy is in a restaurant and notices that a man at table near him has a bit of a "haunted look" in his eye. The story continues:
Given the time and the place, there were only two things which could have caused that look. Either the light-haired young man had seen a ghost, or he had suddenly realized that he had not enough money to pay the check. Jimmy's heart went out to the sufferer. He took a card from his case, scribbled the words, "Can I help?" on it, and gave it to a waiter to take to the young man, who was now in a state bordering on collapse.
The next moment the light-haired one was at his table, talking in a feverish whisper. "I say," he said, "it's frightfully good of you, old chap. It's frightfully awkward. I've come out with too little money. I hardly like to--What I mean to say is, you've never seen me before, and----"
"That's all right," said Jimmy. "Only too glad to help. It might have happened to any one. Will this be enough?"
- The Gem Collector, P. G. Wodehouse
Calling a Senator [man presenting calling card at U.S. Capitol]
Original source unknown; Image from Vangobot
After reading this section my first thought was to question why calling cards ever fell out of fashion. I still have one of my grandmother's calling cards from the late 60s, so they were at least still being used at that time. I absolutely love this idea of introducing yourself to someone, or sending a note to someone in person, via a calling card.
In the book, this reaching out via a calling card is the entire impetus of the storyline. One can't help but wonder what kind of events may unfold by just the passing of a calling card today?
Free calling card downloads from Orangenmond | Image from Orangenmond
I know some parents have been using calling card for play dates, but why not use them for meeting new people too, or for gaining new pen pals in real life? They can say as little or as much as you want. Just because we have many social sites online doesn't mean we stop meeting interesting people in real life. I can count a few times when I met a knitter out and about and later on wished I knew her Ravelry handle so I could check out the project we discussed. The same can go for so many other things - GoodReads, Twitter, paper letters...
I've been working on calling cards to announce our upcoming letter socials to those who attend the current one, or when we are at craft fairs. When I am done with those I'll show you all how I did them. I will be doing a mix of digital printing and hand stamping. For the right now, check out Paper Pastries DIY stamp calling cards; or for those who would like to order professionally printed one, The Well Appointed Desk has a great round-up post of calling card printers