Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Lost Art of Penmanship


I have fantastic penmanship.

I know this because every time someone sees something that I have written, they look at me and offer "you have really great writing, you know, for a guy." I don't even care that the literal translation of that sentence is "you write like a girl."

Writing and printing clearly isn't a difficult task and so it always strikes me as odd that so many people are baffled by my mastery of it. Yeah, I said mastery.

My brother Peter is to thank / blame. Back when we were little, before the days of PlayStations and computer games that kept track of your statistics for you, we did it longhand on ruled paper. Columns were made in red pen. Players names were written in blue ink. If it wasn't up to Pete's standards, I had to do it again.

It wasn't school that taught me good penmanship, it was my anal retentive brother's quest to make the statistics kept for the Kyte Brothers Mini Hockey League that made me write like a girl and I thank him for it.

Good penmanship would have gotten me home earlier last night.

The number three looks like this - 3.
It most certainly does not look like this - 5.

It took me double checking someone's math skills last night around 1:30 in the morning to realize that it wasn't their sums that sucked, but their ability to print numbers they learned in Grade 1 clearly.

For the record - their math skills sucked too, but that wasn't something for me to worry about that late at night and really, if you can't rock some simple mathematics at this point, you're hopeless to me anyway. Especially when you've got a calculator sitting right beside you.

To me, this is the same as speaking properly.

Books are available at the library, not the libary.
You may ask me whatever you like, but you cannot axe me anything, except wood for the fire.

You get the picture.

Scribble notes to yourself, but if your chicken scratch needs to be read by someone else, take two seconds to make sure that they aren't going to need to consult the Rosetta Stone to figure out what you're saying, m'kay?

2 comments:

KateGladstone said...

People who didn't hsve a scorekeeping-obsessed big brother to nag them about penmanship should consider visiting the web-site http://www.HandwritingThatWorks.com

Newt said...

I get the "you write like a girl" all the time. I don't mind, really. If its some sort of rule that guys must have sloppy penmanship then I guess I am not your typical male(nor do I strive to be). I just think its polite and prevents errors when written pages such as todo lists and notes to people are written so that they can clearly understand the directions.