Today, a trip down memory lane, in praise of the cursed cursive ~ I blame my second-grade teacher ~ is something we used to learn in school. I was a second-rate student when it came to penmanship; my likely ADHD was never diagnosed (thankfully!), was in too much of a hurry to discipline myself to write carefully, let alone artfully …
My parents did not have advanced education, but they both had fantastic penmanship. It was less of a focus in my school days, but I recall our handwriting impacted our grades, and mine was horrid.
I had an unexpected reminder of ‘how times have changed’ recently. I was digging through an old file, looking for the eulogy I’d done at my mother’s funeral, and in that folder, old keepsake documents my mother saved and my dad preserved and passed on to me. As I leafed through, I found the guest book from my parents’ wedding in 1948. Most names I recognized as aunts, uncles and cousins, but they held something else in common: excellent penmanship. How could that be that my farmer uncles and farmwife aunts paid such close attention to their penmanship?
It’s surely time that I improved mine …
Feeling inspired, I checked at Staples for fountain pens. Amid their array, one option – two-pack Sharpie brand disposable fountain pens, use till dry and discard – for $6.99. After one day, I yearned for better and gave those away. One gift to our receptionist proved interesting – she’d never seen a fountain before and loved it.
I know/knew what a high-quality pen with a great nib can produce when the writer takes their time, so I went on a shopping mission. I was rewarded.
If you ever wanted a tutorial on writing, explore the collection of fountain pen types and brands across all price ranges ($30 - $2000) at Reid’s. I was so impressed by the salesmanship and product knowledge of college-age staff – I was not walking out empty-handed!
I happily acquired a Diplomat-brand pen and a supply of blue ink. I love my pen. While my writing form hasn’t improved much, my care and deliberateness seem markedly improved.
Less haste, it seems, equals better writing. A slower pace equates to better quality/patient thinking and better writing. My second-grade teacher probably said those things, but I was likely far too distracted to pay proper attention.
I’m enjoying my Diplomat and seriously considering test-driving some other models next time I stop in at Reid’s to stock up on ink. I’ll probably buy another Diplomat – so I can have two ink colours at the ready, but it only seems fitting that I explore something else for variety.
As I understand it, you could spend a lot of money and time on writing at an old-school store like Reid’s – a trip down memory lane in one of Calgary’s finest old-school retailers.