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Old 11-04-2009, 05:28 AM   #21
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You could just respond with a thank you, and a short note about how nice it is to be retired and fondly remembered by your former coworkers.

If you wanted to have some fun, you could always embellish it a bit..

" We appreciate the invitation to the potluck, but the spouse and I have been busy of late, polishing the teak on the new yacht before shutting down the lake house for the season.. We got a late start his year because our trip to Alaska in the new Class A diesel motorhome took up most of our summer. It is always a great trip, but this year we decided to cut it short and fly out of the Yukon so we could watch our grandson graduate at the top of his class at Oxford and make a quick climb of Mt Kilamajaro on the way home from our annual African safari..."
The part in quotations above sounds like some of the Christmas newsletters I get from far flung friends.
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Old 11-04-2009, 07:33 AM   #22
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This is like a Rorschach test of our relations to former co-workers. How could any of us know how you should react if we don't know more about your relationship with the person who wrote you? I still see former employees/coworkers and get/send Bday cards. So I think fondly of former work acquaintances and would respond positively if one I hadn't heard from in a long time contacted me. If you left with hard feelings and never liked the person..., well, you decide.
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Old 11-04-2009, 07:36 AM   #23
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What else could it be? It could be a birthday wish, and then a "oh, by the way, a technical question, something that you worked on back a couple of years ago while on the job.." Does that seem too far fetched?
If this does happen, pull a Steve Martin on them....."I forgot!"

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Old 11-04-2009, 07:50 AM   #24
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Just a quick "thanks for the birthday wish" would be your best bet. My birthday was 4 days ago, and I got a couple dozen "happy birthdays" by email. Some of them were folks that had left the company years ago, a few from close friends, one from my TA at the university where I am a visiting professor, one from a former employee I would prefer to forget...etc. Some were very genuine, others it seemed were programed into outlook as a tickler to remind them to send me one (or as a repeating automatic email every November 1. I am trying to reply kindly to all of them. Even though I would never plan to go out or keep company with any of these post FIRE, I also feel that burning bridges is not a wise thing to do (except for nasty people who you will not in your wildest dream ever meet again).

my two cents...worth just about that.

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Old 11-04-2009, 11:21 AM   #25
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Maybe the email was really from Bill Gates. You can set up reminders and it automaticaly sends from Outlook Maybe they just did not remember to cull old contacts.

If you liked/disliked the sender reply and say how great the weather was on a Tuesday when you were out.
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Old 11-04-2009, 01:44 PM   #26
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I'm not clear on this thing. Is it that you are puzzled as to why they wrote "Happy Birthday" and nothing else? You're saying that you'd expect something like. "Happy Birthday, Easy. We miss you -- hope you're having fun!" ?
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Old 11-04-2009, 02:07 PM   #27
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I'm not clear on this thing. Is it that you are puzzled as to why they wrote "Happy Birthday" and nothing else? You're saying that you'd expect something like. "Happy Birthday, Easy. We miss you -- hope you're having fun!" ?

No..I wasn't thinking "Happy Birthday...we miss you" more like maybe "Happy Birthday...oh, by the way, there's this bug in a program which you worked on awhile back, and for the life of us, we just couldn't figure out..
please help"

Maybe it's the dream/nightmare of w*rk link that stays on my mind


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Old 11-05-2009, 01:55 AM   #28
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Find a more plausible conspiracy to occupy your mind. Perhaps a hobby........
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Old 11-05-2009, 07:35 AM   #29
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You did the right thing.
Keeping in mind those poor suckers are still having to work.
Might have been the best part of that persons day, sending the greeting.
Steve
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Old 11-05-2009, 03:36 PM   #30
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Well, I decided to go ahead a do luch with them sometime probably next month. Ends out one of my former co-w*rkers got let go about one and a half years ago.

From a followup email, they said the co-w*rker who was let go decided to follow in my footsteps.
She now is happily taking care of her family and joined a health club and too busy to w*rk

Now I think it turns out, maybe I'm an inspiration to them...someone who stood my ground to the megacorp and decided to walk away instead of being chained to the j*b.
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Old 11-05-2009, 11:14 PM   #31
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Anyhow, I went ahead and decided to politely reply (or "take the bait"). We shall see. I just pretty much said to everyone on the list "Thank you. It was nice of them to remember me.....p.s. I very much enjoy that for me everyday is Saturday."
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Well, I decided to go ahead a do luch with them sometime probably next month. Ends out one of my former co-w*rkers got let go about one and a half years ago.
Now I think it turns out, maybe I'm an inspiration to them...someone who stood my ground to the megacorp and decided to walk away instead of being chained to the j*b.
Nah... that's just what they're trying to make you think.

Right now in your old conference room someone is saying "OK, boss, the bait's been taken. Remember not to ask about the missing equipment and the undocumented software bugs until we've already started the main course. And for gosh' sakes, stop scratching your shirt where the wire goes to the recorder!"
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Old 11-05-2009, 11:27 PM   #32
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Nah... that's just what they're trying to make you think.

Right now in your old conference room someone is saying "OK, boss, the bait's been taken. Remember not to ask about the missing equipment and the undocumented software bugs until we've already started the main course. And for gosh' sakes, stop scratching your shirt where the wire goes to the recorder!"

Hmmm..I see, another believer in the conspiracy theory.
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Old 11-06-2009, 12:33 AM   #33
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Hmmm..I see, another believer in the conspiracy theory.
Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they can't use your tinfoil hat for a target...
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Old 11-06-2009, 10:12 AM   #34
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Better being a bit paranoid is better than being careless. What would you rather do, use double locks on your front door or leave the door unlocked?

"Trust, but verify..."
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Old 11-06-2009, 10:42 AM   #35
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I would just reply saying 'thank you' and nothing more.
If this were a poll I was agree with the above quote, be polite, thanks them just as they did you and leave it at that.
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Old 11-06-2009, 10:54 AM   #36
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Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they can't use your tinfoil hat for a target...

Now I remember - in the 90's after a 1 1/2 year absence I went back as a jobbshopper and successfully pissed off everybody I missed the previous 20 yrs as a full time employee.



heh heh heh - just kidding.
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Old 11-06-2009, 11:34 AM   #37
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If this were a poll I was agree with the above quote, be polite, thanks them just as they did you and leave it at that.

I've always had the same thought about going to reunions (grade school, high school). Do you really want/need to revisit the past or see how people turned out or have them see how you turned out? Or is it better to just remember things as they were?

I remember going back to my 20 year grade school reunion several years back. In some ways, the memory of the final days of grade school are lost because of the new reunion memories.

I'm sure in the end, the choice is just a personal decision.
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Old 11-06-2009, 05:09 PM   #38
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I like my co-workers and my former co-workers. If I got such an e-mail, I would invite them to lunch and catch up. I still sometimes go to dinner with my boss of 30 years ago. I'm still friends with every boss I ever had and they know how to reach me by e-mail, but if not, google can find me.

Even my former girlfriends have sent me e-mail out of the blue. Is that stalking? I don't think so.
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Old 11-07-2009, 02:08 PM   #39
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Even my former girlfriends have sent me e-mail out of the blue. Is that stalking? I don't think so.
Depends on what changed their status from "one and only" to "former"...
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Old 03-19-2010, 11:12 PM   #40
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Well...eventually, nothing has happened about meeting up with former co-workers for lunch. We had planned to meet in mid-December but I had to postpone as I had to take care of a friend in the hospital in ICU. When I tried to reschedule a date to meet for lunch in January, the old group pretty much said, "We've all been pretty busy around here...really don't have time to go out to lunch". I ending responded by saying, "well...maybe when it gets a little warmer..." and left it at that without really any plans to set a date again.
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