Guess the real translation of the writing on Nebuchanezzar's wall was: "Sorry I have to deliver your doom this way. My keyboard and laser printer are broken."
The Washington Post reports that the handwriting's on the wall as far as, er, handwriting's concerned. This makes me a little sad. Kinda like the let's-get-rid-of-the-penny issue. How depressing that teachers are foregoing traditional cursive penmanship instruction, in favor of teaching to standardized tests and keyboarding.
I've always thought that handwriting was as distinctive a personal trait as a name or mannerisms. Though we were all forced to write one specific way when we were learning cursive (as demonstrated in the little handwriting workbooks we slaved over in elementary school), by junior high school everyone had launched out with his/her own personal style of writing.
Ah, those little writing books! It was a real milestone to begin cursive writing instruction in the 2nd grade (after Christmas - had to use block letters before Christmas). Very grown-up.
And can't you tell your friends' writing at a glance (all those notes passed back and forth, doncha' know)? Why, to this very day when I get a birthday or Christmas card, I can tell who it's from by the handwriting on the envelope. The twins, Sharon and Susan, write a lot alike, as expected, and in the style of our old handwriting practice books. Emily - neat, loopy. Linda - prints block letters, never liked cursive so I guess she'll be happy about its demise.
It's the same with family members. Daddy's handwriting was very scratchy with lots of parallel vertical strokes. Mother wrote small and neat - very readable. My cousin Ann likes to keep her lines straight so she uses a ruler (or appears to) that blunts the bottom of her letters. Daughter Kate writes neatly but very, very tiny. (Why is that, child?)
Many of my English friends' handwriting looks similar - though rounder and straighter than the way we were taught here. I've always wondered what their handwriting books looked like. I'll bet the cursive template is different from the one we Americans used.
So, yeah. I'm sad about losing cursive writing. As wonderful and readable as keyboarded or block letters are, the personality, the artistic bent, the frustration or elation of distinctive cursive writing will be lost. Seems sadly Orwellian somehow. Sigh.