|Example of orderly notes by muki wu in a Midori Traveler's Notebook.|
|Examples of my notes on anything other than the tablecloth.|
Notes, as in take them copiously. Notes, as in jot it down. Notes, as in handwritten. To keep them in any form is an encouraging first step. To take them in some orderly fashion so that I may find them again is the ideal. My life and I are works in progress.
A shared article from the NY Times about what we lose as we lose handwriting reminded me that I do exercise penmanship every day. A good thing, as fond as I am of pens. A better thing for it seems to keep aspects of the brain engaged in a way that using a keyboard does not. I suspect (or may have read, too) that doodling is also good for us in a similar way.
I see the hand as a loyal family retainer of the old school, taking up the pen or pencil in a last stand for civilization in the face of chaos. Yet recently fresh recruits have appeared on the horizon, a younger generation who have sworn allegiance to what they call analog. They are keepers of notebooks and planners, purchasers of fountain pens with triple-digit prices, sketchers and defenders of the high art of hand lettering, inventors of fonts and illustrators of life's often mundane interludes. They may be the new radicals, owners of iPhones, of tablets, who keep track of what matters by writing it down on paper.
For years I've known that I am more likely to remember something when my hand plays a part in preserving it. Under optimal circumstances I may even recall where on the page I wrote it, the name of the poet or illustrator or blogger, squeezed between a reminder to "Visualize Today" and encouragement to "Respond to all areas of your life with love and kindness."