With Christmas comes cards, and if there’s one thing I openly admit to being adorable at (see ’D’awww’ post) it’s writing my own cards. Even though I have varying control over my one hand (the other being a layabout dick), I’ve always written Christmas and Birthday cards for my brother and my parents. It’s just something to do.
And it’s special, damn it. Each Christmas or Birthday the lucky recipient is guaranteed something unique, not in the message – it’s samey and uncreative – but in the handwriting. I’m fairly consistent at the ’To’ bit, but from then on it’s unpredictable. My most common mistake is making the recipient’s name tiny and scribbled before absolutely nailing mine at size-48. Other times I admit defeat and have to divert the eye from the mess by doodling on the opposite page some item yet to be invented or recognised by anyone. Every once in a while though I enter a stride. Something clicks and I end up admiring 4 or 5 wonderfully formed words.
’Do you like my gift?’ I ask.
’My card. Just look at that “f”. You can frame it if you like.’
With the amount of effort and coaxing it takes for me to complete a faulty sentence (to… from), I usually reflect and fail to understand how most other people can write stuff down so easily. Not in a sad way, it’s just fascinating. If you can write with ease, try to imagine what it’s like to be a juggling contortionist. Hard to comprehend, right? And if you actually are a juggling contortionist, stop showing off.
I remember this kids program I used to watch where this Mexican mouse (naturally wearing a sombrero) would demand a giant pen show him how to write a letter of the alphabet. The giant pen would then form the letter step by step in one fluid motion, and then would do it again from scratch, one pretty letter with one smooth line. This hypnotised me every time it came on.*
A small activity done with flair and precision can still floor me to this day. I’m one of those weirdos who’s watched drawing tutorials on YouTube while having no intention of picking up a pencil. Street people posing as statues gawp at me gawping at them. How is it possible to be so still?? I have trouble concentrating on death scenes in films for the same reason – stab victims are SO STILL!
This isn’t inspiring, by the way, my writing cards. In fact my brother is inspired to do nothing but drink heavily after seeing my efforts. I do wonder if I could get onto the news with my story though, the one nice story you see at the end. I deserve 100k views on YouTube, at the least.
*By the way, I still don’t fully grasp the letter ’a’, but I’m close enough (’o’ with a tail, basically.)