The person this is directed at is not one of the acquaintances I expect to be reading this, but just to contribute to the edification of the world at large:
An e-mail message is not a summons by royal bugle. I don’t check every account I have daily, and I often wait until I have a meaningful response before, you know, responding. It doesn’t mean I’m dead or ignoring you. Surely you can find something to do for 48 hours of turnaround time.
A client or colleague writing to my work address has a right to expect a prompt response. Additionally, any of the following three people conveying the following three messages can assume I will respond immediately, possibly before I’ve read to the end:
Accident at the plant. Your father’s in the burn unit, but he’ll be out in a few weeks. They think. Call me for an update–don’t worry about the hour.
The pressure from my boss is too great, and I’ve finally decided to cave and marry that eligible Todai grad in the HR department. I adore you more than life itself, but I’m afraid I’ll have to ask you to be out of the apartment by the end of the month. Feel free to take the Imari, but leave the Bohemian glasses.
Word is you’re a revelation in the sack. I’m in town to shoot a Toyota commercial; meet me, 11 p.m., Shinjuku Park Hyatt, Room **** to see how much these bagpipes can still blast.
If you’re not any of the above, I will write back on my own time–not because I think I’m busier and more important than you are, but because that’s all I expect of people I’m corresponding with myself. There’s enough pointless hurry in modern life without adding it to shoot-the-breeze private correspondence. Good grief.