My dear friend over at Bringing Up Daisy has just ruined my life.
I have loved letters since I was a VERY small child. I remember my mother getting onto me for putting a little tail on the end of my manuscript lower-case “a” when I was in kindergarten. “But it’s my CURSIVE ‘a,'” I remember saying plaintively. To no avail, she and my kindergarten teacher, our across-the-street-neighbor, Lucille, would have none of it.
I remember in 1st grade when my mother PAINSTAKINGLY printed the letters of my name
R O X A N N E
onto a little home-made, pink bag on which she had embroidered a yellow kitty sitting next to a red flower and looking at a blue butterfly. She then embroidered my name in black so it would stand out. It was my special bag to hold my flashcards. I was a struggling reader (IMAGINE THAT), and she was trying to encourage me to learn my sight words. She wasn’t happy with any of the iron-on embroidery letters she had, so she printed her own. I still have that bag.
I remember in 2nd grade when my school teacher mother finally threw up her hands and gave into my demands to learn to write in cursive. After years of “It’s too early.” “You’re doing it wrong.” “You’ll learn in 3rd grade.” She finally one day said, “If you’re going to do it, I might as well teach you the RIGHT way.”
I remember in 3rd grade when Mrs. Kennedy said, “Boys and girls, several of you are having trouble making a cursive capital B. I would like for one of our students to come and make one on the board so you can see how it should be done. Roxanne, would you please go and write a cursive capital B?” I was so excited and proud and nervous. . .I think it was the WORST capital B I ever made.
I cannot count the number of times I’ve written my alphabet for fun.
I have huge words on my wall at school in several fonts which I got from our library computers and blew up to larger sizes made out of several colors of scrapbook paper. It’s the Fruit of the Spirit in the guise of a word wall.
I’m so sneaky.
And when I just went in search of the name for someone like me–a lover of letters–a lover of words–I found this instead,
“From my youth upwards, I have been a lover of words, a chooser of words, in a slender and superficial manner, a student of words, and instead of acquiescing in such disparagement, reducing them almost to ‘ airy nothing,’ I proclaim myself ready to maintain against all comers that words are things; nay, and things of pith and moment, life and passion. Have we not the right word, the very word, the word of advice, the word in season, the word of comfort, the warning word, the cruel word, and the kind one? And what are these but things? How they fasten themselves on our memory, with a grasp never to be shaken off while life endures! How our associations cling and swarm, and cluster round them! How our hearts beat at the sound with recollected joy, grief, pity, hope, indignation, or gratitude! Things! Nay, I am more inclined to call them persons, in such vivid individuality of feature do they rise before ‘ the eye of mind.’ Have they not also—at least the more distinguished of their race—their pedigrees, their biographies, their private, sometimes their scandalous, histories and anecdotes? Are there not among them ranks and degrees, nobles and commoners, decent people and rabble, natives and aliens, legitimates and illegitimates, pure breeds and mongrels?”
From Memoirs, Miscellanies, and Letters of the Late Lucy Aikin
Isn’t that just wonderful? If I can’t take the credit for making those statements, at least I found them to enjoy.
And I swanee, this Flickr site is Satan’s candy.