Raymond, you so write like a girl


During the Windows 95 project, we had a super-sized whiteboard in the hallway outside the build lab in order to keep track of the most critical bugs that were blocking the release of the build. I remember one day I was walking past the board, and two of my colleagues were particularly interested in one of the bugs. Its current status had recently been updated to something like "Problem understood, fix coming, ETA 2pm." But they weren't as interested in the bug itself as in the identity of the person who made the update.

Janice asked Rachel, "Do you know who wrote that?"

"No, but it's clearly a woman's handwriting."

"Obviously, but who could it have been? I would have guessed Laura, but I know her writing and that's not it."

"Ahem," I interjected. "I wrote that."

An awkward silence.

"Oh, it's very nice handwriting, really."

"Yes, very graceful."

Looking back at my penmanship through the years, I think that era was my peak. It has been declining steadily ever since. Sometimes I stop to try to recover some of its former glory, but at best it's just holding its ground.

(While you're checking out TechNet Magazine, why not drop into the current issue's Blog Tales written by our own Betsy Aoki.)

Comments (21)
  1. Anonymous says:

    LOL!  That really makes perfect sense.

    I respect you as a gifted developer and my intellectual superior in a general sense, but you’ve got issues, my friend.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I don’t see how having handwriting that has been mistaken as a woman’s handwriting somehow means that a person has issues.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Because well-adjusted people all write like me – a nearly illegible scribble…

  4. Anonymous says:

    I’ll never understand how people can write neatly.  I don’t have the worlds worst chicken scratch, but it’s closer to it than to caligraphy.

    One of the interesting things I’ve noticed about my own signature, is that it’s never anything close to the same twice.  I wonder if that makes me more or less secure against forgery?

  5. Anonymous says:

    Maybe it’s a result of having a withered hand? :)

  6. Anonymous says:

    When I was in the Army, one of my fellow lieutenants had the most beautiful handwriting I’d ever seen…it looked like the hand of Thomas Jefferson or one of my ex-girlfriends.

    Turns out he was schooled by Jesuits and that beautiful handwriting had been beaten into him by the Sisters who ran his school.

    He was an excellent officer and a good friend.  May God rest his soul.

  7. Mike Dunn says:

    I write so rarely these days that it feels weird when I do it. My handwriting was never any good, now it utterly stinks.

    That reminds me, the rent is due today… time to write a check.

  8. Anonymous says:

    I’m beginning to understand why Tablet PC isn’t taking off.

  9. Anonymous says:

    aawwww, wanna see a scan of your writing…

  10. Anonymous says:

    Raymond’s writing has lots of swoopy descenders.  Sometimes they are used to cross t’s in lower lines, which is just cool.  Words like "to" and "the" are very stylized, almost into their own characters.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Did you learn to write Chinese characters at an early age? Most of my Chinese friends have a distinctive style of English penmanship, which I think comes out of learning to write Hanzi. I guess it could be considered a little effeminate-looking. (although I wish I could write as well)

  12. Anonymous says:

    I can barely sign my own name.

  13. Anonymous says:

    so a by who writes like a ‘girl’ has issues? what is it to ‘write like a girl’? Is it ‘loopy’ bits. Then does that mean I write like a boy because I ‘lack loops’ does that mean I’ve got more issues than a broken space-bar, melted power cable and now flashing internal flat display on my laptop?  

  14. Manip says:

    If you put a heart in place of a dot then you’re writing like a girl… Or use pink pen <shudder>

    But other than that I don’t know what famine writing looks like. :-)

  15. Anonymous says:

    I write loops instead of dots.

    Uhuh… we

  16. Anonymous says:

    My (Script) handwriting has been deteriorating since, I think, 1976, when, in 8th grade, I started printing some things.  (Actually, I had regular complaints from teachers about my penmanship before that — which I ignored on the basis that while my writing may not have looked pretty, every letter looked distinct, unlike the Palmer method, where every letter looked alike.)

    Anyway, throughout High School I printed more & more of my work.  By the time I reached college, and I first got a checking account, the only thing I still wrote in script was the amount-as-words on the check.  About a year or two later, I realized I was better off printing that as well.  

    So, for the past 20 years, the only think I’ve written in script is my signature.  However, even that has deteriorated to the point where it’s just "J—– M. C—-n

  17. Anonymous says:

    Did you dot your i’s with hearts or something?

  18. DeanEarley says:

    Manip: Does Famine write? :)

  19. Anonymous says:

    I stole the name of this post from Raymond Chen’s post of&amp;nbsp;a similar name. &amp;nbsp;What makes it great…

  20. Anonymous says:

    This was a fun night – a bunch of blogs.msdn.com/* bloggers having dinner last week.

    Left to right:…

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