There is nothing quite like writing. I don’t mean posting something on Twitter, or shooting out a dozen emails. I mean writing. With a pen(cil). On paper. With your hands. In this day and age of technology, we have simplified so many things. You can pay your mortgage with the touch of a button. You can view concerts from across the globe live on your computer. We are always connected, ever able to get to anyone, anywhere in the world within 24 hours. But have we gone too far when after writing some ten lines on a notepad, my hand cramps from the weight of the pen I’m wielding? Granted, it’s a big ol’ heavy MontBlanc pen that I have had for years and probably shouldn’t be used for much more than signing away a billion dollar company, but still. And yes, I wrote that. I was sitting on a plane, day dreaming and doodling, when my heart suddenly sank at the realization of what I just wrote on that napkin.
The romance of writing is gone. Even to-do lists, a short love note, Hell, writing one’s flight information is available on our phones, tablets and computers. I wonder if children at school learn their QWERTY’s as quickly as their ABC’s. I remember the days hen I’d write a note to a friend, obsess over how I wrote my “a’s” or how I dotted my “I’s”, would fold the note into a shape, be it an envelope, a flower, or another bit of origami. Part of the thrill would lie in how my friends would respond. Would they be able to figure out how to refold the letter? What would she write? How would she write it?
There is emotion in how we write, whether in big, loops, or in a hurried fervor, hoping that our hands would be able to keep up with the speed in which our minds race. We wrote in script, we wrote in print, and sometimes we wrote in secret languages no one but the closest of friends understood or could possibly decrypt. We’d write in journals, in our textbooks, and we’d write on napkins, receipts, on anything that had a surface to scribble something on. But now? Now our hands cramp, our minds race at the speed of 100 words per minute, and we forget. We forget the importance of writing. Much of what we want to say comes off in how we write, and so we often give people only part of the story. Truly, the romance of the scripted word is dying. It’s time we brought it back to life. Snail mail needs to come back. Or else writing will fall by the way side much in the way word of mouth, the way stories used to be told throughout the generations before writing, had disappeared.
I am hereby rededicating myself to writing notes to people, as often as I can, when given the opportunity. Even if it’s to write my friend a note wishing her good luck in her next round, or to handwrite thank you notes. The world has become so digitized, we sometimes forget how important it is to take that extra minute to write a note, and three business days for the mail to arrive at the intended person’s hand.