Anyone who spends a sufficient amount of time writing to themselves tends to appreciate the art of a handwritten note, the particular way someone’s own writing communicates a message more intimately and correctly than another medium. In contrast to the confidence of a blue-toned iMessage or a Helvetica-filled e-mail, spindly script or clumsy print makes a person seem so much more vulnerable and endearing.
I love notes. I love writing them, I love receiving them, I love saving them. Long or short, I don’t discriminate. I have them on all sorts of strange mediums, from coasters to Post-Its to random scraps ripped from old textbooks or note pages. There’s a sense of a specific moment in time attached to handwritten notes; the author, at some point, had to pause, put pen to paper, and produce what’s written. Pressed between the pages of old journals, I like that sometimes they have nothing to do with the writing around them, they simply are taped along in there as a point of reference to life at that moment, with that author.
In a world where the threat of a damaged phone means losing messages (unless you have that ish backed up, shoutout to iCloud) there’s a distinct sense of safety in a solid piece of paper with writing on it. My grandpa’s laughably messy chicken scratch can still remind me of how proud he is, even if he’s not around anymore to tell me in person. A thank-you note brings a smile at memories of bygone summers filled with car rides, beach days, and friends from out of town. An old “I love you” gently illustrates how different life can be from one note to the next, but is a comforting reminder that wonderful things happened in the past and from a future vantage point there are only new messages to come.