Friday, November 27, 2020

The letter Z

This computer age has turned us into people who hardly ever write with a pencil or pen.  I didn't realize how much until I began practicing left-hand writing.  I don't remember when the last time was that I wrote a letter in my own handwriting.  I used to keep written diaries.  Now I type out a blog entry on my computer.  When I think about it, the only things I write are grocery lists and checks.  

Now you're probably thinking, "Who writes checks in this day and age?"

Well, I do.  I had been paying my bills online for many years, but as I get older and my mind gets feebler, I find it's safer for me to pay by check.  Yes, stamps are expensive, and most companies charge a little more if you're not paying online.  But somehow, paying by mail works better for me.  Here's the thing that first made me decide to go back to the old-fashioned way of paying bills:  Cliff is positive he'll die before I do, while I know very well that anybody can unexpectedly give up the ghost at any time.  And if I'm the first one to go, he will be paying the bills.  There's no way he could pay bills online... let's face it, I have to check library books out for him on the iPad.  He knows how to do a Google search, and that's about the extent of his computer skills.  It isn't that he couldn't learn it, but he doesn't really want to.  His brain is full of tractor parts and such, and he's probably afraid he'd lose some of that if he had to make room in his head for computer stuff.  

And just so you know, we've never liked debit cards, although I don't even remember why.

What does this have to do with the letter Z?

Well, I'm still practicing my left-handed writing every day.  I write a few sentences, then I write the whole alphabet in cursive, capital letter and small letters.

By the way, where did the word "cursive" come from?  I never heard it until my children reached a certain age:  Maybe it was in second grade they began learning "handwriting" which is what I called it all my life, and they came home calling it cursive.  When I went to school we were never taught to print.  At the age of five, we just started writing in cursive. 

But I digress.  Throughout my years of writing, in that time before personal computers arrived, I can now see I made my own shortcuts.  The second time I wrote the alphabet with my left hand, I realized I was taking the lazy way out on certain letters, and had been for most of my life.  The most noticeable letter was Z.  If the first word in a sentence started with Z, I printed the Z and then carried on in cursive for the remainder of the word.  And as I did my printed Z, I somehow remembered that there is a different way to write a capital Z; however, I couldn't recall for the life of me how it was done.  So I googled "cursive alphabet" and got this:

Wow, look at that crazy Z.  Believe it or not, when I first saw it, I remembered having trouble with it as a kid.  I've noticed other examples of my laziness when writing.  I leave off the little wing at the beginning of H, M, N, U, V, and Y.  The capitol letter Q is another strange one I'd forgotten.  

Obviously, none of this matters much, as long as a person can read my writing, but for my leftie practice, I'm trying to do it properly.  My left-handed writing still looks shaky, and it's slow going.  I need to get  pencil that gives me darker writing.  

Oh, by the way: I found out there are left-handed writing tips on Youtube!  I needed that, just to find out whether I was doing it right, and apparently I am.  

About that Petty-Aunt Pie:  It may have been something I did wrong, or perhaps it was my oven (which won't even brown biscuits on the top without burning the bottoms of them), but while the taste of the pie is good, the bottom crust got soggy by the second day.  If any of my readers try it, let me know if that happens to you.  Cliff said it isn't as good as regular apple pie anyway, and I tend to agree.

It will be interesting to see how crowded the stores are this year on this Black Friday during a pandemic.  I've only gone out on Black Friday once in my life.  It was kind of fun then, but it wouldn't be now, even without a pandemic.

Yours truly,



  1. My handwriting has definitely gone down hill and should use it more often even if it's only a practice sheet like you've shown. Everything is done on the computer these days. Many kids are not even learning handwriting at all anymore and I think it's a shame. Anyway I'm soon going to start out doing Christmas cards and will be getting in some practice. More handwriting than I usually do. Hopefully everyone will be able to read the writing on them.

  2. I love reading your blog posts, Donna, because most of the time I could have written them easily. You & I are two peas in a pod, most definitely. I still write checks for our bills and we don't have a debit card. We were late coming on to the debit card scene anyway and when we finally got one, it wasn't a year before the number was stolen and our debit card used fraudulently. After the bank closed that debit card account we never opened another one.

    And yes, handwriting! I homeschooled my kids for 25 years in total and my goal throughout was that all 3 of my children were going to master the English language: reading it, writing it, speaking it... including penmanship and proper sentence structure. All of them to this day have retained what they were taught.

    I myself can type faster than I can write or even speak. So that's why I type most things rather than write them out. I write a pen-pal letter to my elderly aunt every month and she's lonely so I try to make sure my letters are long. The 6 page letter I type out each month would take me infinitely longer to write out by hand.

    We should start a Check Writers Unite club. *hahaha* ~Andrea xoxo

  3. I use a debit card a lot and seldom write checks. When my Bob was alive and went out on disasters for the Red Cross and FEMA, he needed to get some money from our account and he had a debit card but he couldn't remember the pin number. I don't know why he didn't ask me on a phone call but when he got home he asked me for the pin number again and I explained to him how I remember it. That helped. I use the debit card and also have an Amazon card. That's the only cards I use.

  4. I still write checks too because I'm more aware of the money going out than if it's automatically paid out of my bank account. I don't at the store though because it's now a convoluted process to do so. I never got the hang of cursive capitals so I do the same thing you do.(printed capital, then cursive) The Z and Q are crazy!

    1. I'm going to get a Mead Primary Journal, grads K through 2. The way those are lined, it will really help me. Then I'm going to write something in it every day, like a diary. It'll be my left-handed journal. Otherwise, I'd never get any practice, since nobody writes things these days.


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