It’s National Handwriting Day. I have a girlfriend that loves handwritten letters. E-mails are acceptable, but she likes a letter to arrive via snail mail. I admit to liking the latter myself. Today I got a thank you note and a late Christmas letter in the mail. It made my day. The even better part, I could read both sets of handwriting. That doesn’t happen to be the case when someone gets a letter from me. Well, that’s not entirely true, but let’s just say, handwriting has never been one of my strong suits.

I remember in second grade learning to write in cursive. We would sit and draw circles over and over again on very wide marked lines. Some of my classmates made perfect circles that touched the lines. Mine were more like ovals that had trouble touching the line for more than the length of a pencil dot. I was told to practice, but it didn’t do much good.

I remember in my high school junior year, there were projects displayed in one of my classes. I had received a B on my work that had been lowered to a C because of my illegible handwriting. Right next to mine was another “brainy” students who got an A with a + for handwriting. Now, I didn’t wear glasses back then and her writing was so fancy, I had trouble deciphering her a’s from her o’s. I guess it was all from the teacher’s perspective, which I still believe was slanted….oh well. Life went on.

My handwriting is no better today but I have read that people with poor handwriting are actually more concerned with how well they do a job, than with how it looks, so I’ll hold on to that. I have also read that bad handwriting is a sing of a higher IQ. I’ll take that one too. Think about your doctor’s handwriting.

And of course, the argument today in the U.S. is whether they will even continue to teach cursive in the schools and that it may eventually become a secret code because our young people aren’t being taught how to write or read it. Wow, that sounds like a step back in history when people weren’t allowed to learn. That’s a sad thought.

I for one, still use my check book and still sign my name in handwriting and I will probably continue to do so. When I write a letter, I prefer to type it, just so the recipient can read it more easily. Handwriting is a great tool, but I know my real friends will say, “Oh good, she typed it,” when they take a letter from me out of an envelope.