I’ve never done the auto-reply thing on my email. Though I appreciate the usefulness of the tool, I would feel awkward auto-sending an impersonal email to every single person who emails me on any given day.
Besides, the auto-reply I would use could never be a cute little message like I get from other people’s accounts. I could never send a quick and easy auto-reply like “I’m away, but I’ll be back on Wednesday and will reply upon my return.”
Mine would have to read a bit more like this:
I got your email days (weeks?) ago. Thank you for it. I have been a little too busy putting out online fires and doing stuff I get paid to do and writing a book and visiting with family and wrapping up (still!) the previous school year and planning (here it comes!) the next and trying to pay a little bit of attention to my own husband and kids to reply just yet.
It doesn’t mean I don’t love you. And I apologize if I had the audacity weeks ago to tell you I’d get right back to you.
Does it help to know that I can’t bring myself to archive your message or delete it yet because I have been lying to myself about the number of things one person can cram into a single 24-hour period? I have been believing the lies I tell — That I will respond soon. Maybe even today. Because I have plenty of time to do so.
But for now, you are stuck with this shameful auto-reply, made all the more shameful by the fact that I can’t even bring myself to send it. Or even ask Gmail to send it for me.