I am listening to a woman speak in slow motion. At some point in life some people slow down. Some people really slow down. “He’s the genuine article,” she’s saying. Unfortunately, no matter how slowly I write, I cannot convey how slowly she talks. What I can do is tell you that I am fascinated by the slow, deliberate way she speaks. And the phrase, “the genuine article,” is a nice one. As a clerk in a fish market, I had a customer who was between 80 and 100 years old. When it came time to pay, she slowly opened her checkbook (it might even have been a cheque book) and then she apologized in advance for how long it was going to take to write the check. “It’s ok, take your time,” I told her. And then she proceeded, in beautiful, old-fashioned handwriting, to fill out the check. I told her it was worth the wait.
I call it old-fashioned handwriting in part because it took her two full minutes to write the check. It is a rare person these days who spends that much of his/her time writing a check. I write checks so fast you’d think the check was in boiling water.