THIS Christmas I would love to be spared the ridiculous circulation of Christmas and New Year's messages.
The messages drip with saccharine sweetness but lack the personal touch that makes real communication something poignant.
Personally, I have never ever sent anyone a Christmas card or a text message authored by a stranger.
But that has not spared me from the cheesy impersonal SMSes and e-mails that flood my inbox at this time of the year.
The bizarre thing about these SMSes is that once you receive the first one, the floodgates open automatically and thousands more arrive.
So for at least two weeks you receive the same message over and over from various sources.
The authors of these inane messages really try to be creative by putting little angels, candles and all manner of twinkling lights and sparkles in the background, but this does not make it any better.
Maybe I don't have a sense of humour but this regurgitation of the same message has to be the most annoying aspect of the season.
Deleting the texts is not only time consuming but very risky for my manicured nails.
It is almost guaranteed that the sender of the SMS or e-mail is not the original author but has merely forwarded a message that they received from someone else!
It is worse when they forget to delete the name of the earlier sender so you end up reading a message from someone you don't know.
This mindless forwarding of Christmas and New Year's messages is intrusive and lacks sincerity.
Retailers are also in on this. Just because I bought a pair of shoes from you early this year does not make us special friends and you don't have to lure me back to your stores by sending me such rubbish.
My favourite example is from my car dealership. After battling to get a response from them about a double debit on my account, I got excited when I saw an e-mail and SMS from them earlier this week.
I marvelled when both the SMS and e-mail flashed on my different screens at the same time. At that point I thought Christmas had come early because I thought I was going to get an explanation about that nasty double debit.
My heart turned stone cold when the message said: "Dear valued customer. Here's wishing you a festive season filled with good cheer and blessings. Thank you for your continued patronage."
A refund and a less lethargic response to my frantic enquiries would have brought me more blessings, thank you very much!
A colleague who is single is convinced that the purveyors of these irritating messages are anti-single people. He throws his toys out of the cot every time he gets a message that reads: "Wishing you and yours a merry Christmas."
"Why do they assume everyone has a 'yours' and is it abnormal not to have someone?" he yells.
I tell him to calm down because a widowed aunt received a Christmas card from an estate agent wishing her and her husband - who had died recently - a wonderful festive season. There is an "oops" moment.
The most presumptuous of the lot has to be fervent spokespeople and supporters of political parties.
Maybe I am just unlucky but every year a number of people aligned to a political party send me messages wishing me a wonderful holiday period and thanking me for being a part of the fight to "reverse the frontiers of poverty".
I won't tell you which political party the senders represent but here's a clue - the SMSes are always addressed to 'Dear Comrade' and end with 'Amandla!'"
I'm not sure what grinds me more - the strangers who send me these messages or friends and family who should know better than to communicate with me in this distant manner. Surely if I mean something to them, they must find a special way of interacting with me.
Just when I start to recover from these frivolous messages, the new year dawns with the obligatory "compliments of the season" greeting.
And the torture, I'm afraid, will continue for another two months. Eish!