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The Best Correspondence From A Reader Ever Written

For better or worse, digital media—especially the social kind—has made frontline media people accessible to readers in a way they never were back in the print days. Yes, we had phones (and the United States Postal Service for the rare letter-writer) back then and still do, but it’s much easier to fire off a quick email or text message to the author of a story, and most of us are readily accessible that way.

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Whether you own an old 20-foot Baja Outlaw or a new Skater 438, your high-performance boating habit started with a dream. Photo courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.

People get bold in text and email messages. They express strong feelings and opinions they likely wouldn’t in a phone call, much less in person. And generally speaking, people are more likely to reach out if they hate a story than they are if they love one.

For these reasons and more, I exhale before I open reader emails or texts or—most commonly these days—one of those ominous “New Message Requests” via Facebook. They tend to be the scariest ones of all, and I’m not sure why.

And so I braced myself as usual when I opened this one a few days ago.

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