I need to send out emails to professors at places I would like to attend graduate school, but I am not sure how to write these emails. I want to write:
HEY DR. DOOD!
ZOMGFLUFFLES UR RESEARCH IS, LIKE, SO HAWT!!!!11!1! U R TEH AWESOMES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :) HAZ U ROOMZ IN UR LAB FOR ME!?
When I know that it wouldn't do to do so. I know that perhaps 3 professors might appreciate getting such an email, but in the vast majority of cases I am aware that to do this would be folly and most likely leave an irreparably bad impression. So I'm left with:
[Bland Statement 1] [Who I Am] [Something Vaguely Intelligent] [I Read Your Paper, By Which I Really Mean I Read the Abstract] [Bland Statement 2] [Something Trying To Be Intelligent] [Bland Statement 3] [Might There Be Room In Your Lab For Me?]
And this just seems so damn contrived and passionless that I don't know what to really do with it. It's so boring and flat and it communicates none of the enthusiasm or intelligence I may be able to bring to bear on their research focus. But it's what's right, kinda. If I try to inject personality by dressing up words just a little, I'm liable to come across as a sophist jackass or, as is more likely in my case, as a crazy person not to be trusted with pencils.
So this is my quandary, and I don't really see any good ways around it. How do I balance my enthusiasm with the need for propriety/formality? Suggestions!?