Wednesday, August 3, 2011

It's the end of the world as we know it.

So fewer schools are teaching kids cursive writing. And many of you probably don't care. Click this link for what I said about this a couple of years ago.

But think about all the places where a kid needs to know cursive, like signing yearbooks. Oh, wait, I guess in the future, all school yearbooks will be a Facebook page and kids will pay $75 for the app to be able to view it and leave messages. Duh.

But, really? Didn't you love seeing everyone's handwriting? Didn't you compare the cute curves of most girls' notes to the awkward blocky text of the boys? Didn't that make you laugh? I always wondered how the girls learned to write so cute. Look at this example [reading from my 19** middle school yearbook] "U R the sweetest. Yum! I hope to C U this summer."

See? That's awesome. And that was written by, oh, um... Stephen. Yeah, I remember now. That was a good summer, our secret summer. What ever happened to Stephen?

And what about our serial killers? How will we be able to identify the tell-tale signs of their future horrors without being able to analyze their handwriting after they kill all those people? "Oh, look at this letter 'a,'" we'll say, "this was a clue that he was a ticking time bomb." Isn't it funny how we all do that? After some terrible action like a mass killing, we look back to see if we could have predicted it and stopped it before it happened. Like solving a maze from the end going backwards. Which is easy as hell. But try to solve the maze going in the right direction and you get blindsided by dead ends or traps. So now we'll without the "Monday morning quarterback" wisdom of the handwriting analysts.

And speaking of evil, how can you strike a deal with the Devil if you only know how to text? You can't sign your name to become a billionaire or a movie star! You can bet Tom Cruise is teaching his kids how to write in cursive. Maybe the Devil has a BlackBerry, I don't know. I just think he does business that way. Don't ask how I know. But when my birthday rolls around, I always know whose card is in the singed red envelope.

So some day when kids can't write in longhand and we've had a century of texting and interweb lingo and our civilization has fallen due to that meteor that the government keeps saying will totally miss us and we have to create a new government, I'm guessing that we won't have these words to help guide us:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

But we'll have this because this is what our schools will be teaching in 5 years:

we hld thz trootz 2B slf-Fident, dat ll men r cr8d eql, dat thyre Ndowd by ther cre8r W certN Nalienabl ryts, dat mong deez r lyf, lberty n d prsuit of ^^.

But maybe cursive writing isn't such a big deal. I've never had a purchase rejected because my signature didn't match something that I don't know what it should match when I check out at Best Buy and pay by credit card. I move the pen in circular motions on the screen of the scanner and it makes some line on the cashier's screen and she presses a key and I get my receipt. It's an obsolete action that is probably just a carry-over from days of the Old West when the local feed store refused to take Discover.

So kids won't be able to compose beautiful notes to each other or write flower love poems with pretty penmanship. They'll have emoticons. And I think the right one for that feeling is <3. That's either a heart or a witch with big tits. But either way, Love.

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