Over the years, my handwriting has changed. Actually over the course of writing a letter my handwriting can change. This has always fascinated me. I can actually write a word with multiples of the same letter and each time that letter will be written slightly differently. I don't know what this says about my personality. That I am inconsistent? unreliable? or just creative?
In some ways, I like the old style of writing, where every one learned cursive script the same way. You can identify the writing of a prewar letter by its style, and an 18th century script by its flourishes. But I also chafed against it when I was in public school and I remember arguing with a teacher about why I couldn't write my b as it is printed. I have practiced writing my a or a and I am totally inconsistent with the tails of my g and y. I actually longed for a name that began with Q just so I could write that letter every time I signed my name. I have never, ever, ever, signed my name with a heart or a circle over the i. I am proud of that.
I am not so proud of the era where I thought it was cool to write with a serious back slant. Or the time when it was so tiny as to be almost unreadable. Now, I find I start out writing huge letters before they finally settle down to a more appropriate size. Sometimes I will look at my penmanship as I write and wonder if my hand is possessed, it looks so unrecognizable.
I have a collection of pens for this task, too. Some are the run of the mill Bic (though I always preferred Papermate) and many are now of the gel variety. Depending on my mood, I may use a fine, or very fine point, though in my heart I prefer the medium point with the wide swath of dark blue ink. I like the way the pen scratches on the paper and even the way it makes an indent when you press too hard. Writing is the one way we can all display our creativity or individuality. We also display our mood and personality as we write. You cannot detect that from a keyboard.
Now most of my writing is on postcards. And with some of the long names or addresses from places in China and Finland, for example, I need to be vigilant and neat, and write small to fit it all in. It is at times a challenge to write neatly, but I do want these people who may not be so proficient in English to at least be able to read what I’ve taken the trouble to write. I have seen some pretty elegant handwriting on some of these cards that I would like to emulate. I have also, unfortunately, seen some that I could not decipher at all, mostly because of the script, not necessarily the messiness. I try to guess about the writer – their age or sex or interests even, before looking up their profile when I register the card. I also received a card from another blogger and found her handwriting to be exactly as I would have expected. That does not always happen. Sometimes, one is appalled by the chicken scratches that other people pass off as penmanship, or surprised by the flow of letters that doesn’t seem to match the personality.
So, bearing in mind all I have said above… I have tried several samples and this seems to be the best I can do today. It really doesn’t feel like me. and yes, that is purple ink.
this post inspired by Jazz