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Love emails straight from the heart

July 27th, 2006

Dr Petra

You may already have seen the story about the email from Joseph Dobbie to Kate Winsall. It seems that Joseph met Kate at a party and was so enamoured he tracked down her email and asked her for a date. Unfortunately Kate didn’t respond to the email in quite the way Joseph probably intended – circulating it amongst friends that inevitably saw the message finding its way onto the net and then into the newspapers. You can see the whole message below.

Most of the coverage has mocked Joseph’s chat-up email, but I think this story is interesting for other reasons. For those who are worried about someone asking them out it does show if someone’s keen enough they’ll find a way to reach you. And I think it does take guts to make contact with someone you’ve met. Okay, so most of us will probably agree Joseph may have had more luck if his message had ended at the point when he asked Kate for a coffee at the Tate Modern, but maybe this is an example of the right approach being tried on the wrong person. After all, Joseph’s chat up might have been ideal for someone other than Kate.

Many guys complain about how difficult it is to approach someone they like, to find the courage to ask someone out, or even to find places to meet someone. Stories like this one can hardly fill men with confidence that it’s okay to take a chance and request a date.

If nothing else, this story should hopefully tell us that if we like someone it’s worth letting them know. Okay, so you may not get lucky – but if you keep trying then who knows? Although perhaps the lesson learned here is always keep it short and simple – and save the more intimate messages for when you know someone a little better.

Here’s the message – you decide what you think about it.

Hello Kate,

It’s Joe – we met at Andrew’s party.

I hope you don’t mind me getting your e-mail address from the e-mail that Andy sent to us all; it is a bit sneaky of me.

It was wonderful to meet you on Saturday, and I wonder if you would consider meeting me for coffee sometime; maybe at the Tate Modern? OK. This is where my common sense is telling me to stop? keep it simple and positive Joe.

And the probability of me listening to that voice? Experience has taught me that it is not worth putting up a fight; I will end up giving in to the part of me that never wants to find itself shaking its head and muttering ‘if only?’

This is the part where I throw caution to the wind; the part where I listen to my heart and remember that I should live my life as an exultation and revel in the opportunity to try; the part where I refuse to apologise for who I am; the part where I trust that the lady I met on Saturday night is, as I suspect, able to see sincerity where others would see cliche.

I am fortunate enough to have been able to collect a number of special memories. They are memories of moments that made any struggle leading up to them worthwhile. They are memories of moments when I am struck by something so beautiful, time stands still and all of the ugliness in the world ceases to exist.

Your smile is the freshest of my special memories. Regardless of whether we see each other again, I will use it as I do my other special memories. I will call on it when I am disheartened or low.

I will hold it in my heart when I need inspiration. I will keep it with me for moments when I need to find a smile of my own.

I am unsure of all my motives for sharing this with you and, if I am honest, not ready to examine them too closely. However, I know that it makes me feel good to believe that maybe, if you are ever upset, knowing that I will be keeping your smile alive might help you through.

If you are half as intelligent and aware as I believe you to be, I am sure that you will find what I have written, in the very least, sweet. If I am twice as lucky as I would dare to hope, you will find this note charming and agree to contact me and arrange a date.

Either way, I trust that your reply will be candid – you told me how much you value honesty. One last thing, I promise that it is enormously rare for me to stray as far from sobriety as I managed on Saturday night. Be safe. Joe.

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