From nine to five – and the mystery of the mature greeting


How do you write the number 9?

Starting in the top right corner with the anti-clockwise balloon followed by a straight line down? Or starting from the base line, working your way upwards on the right in one big mirrored C, turning in on itself toward the end? Perhaps you start from the very center of the figure, moving clock-wise to the left, upwards, reaching the top and continue down in an arrow shaped hand movement until you reach the bottom, as if drawing one circle – right, lower, left, up, right again and then finishing off with a long slide of the hand, getting off track from the original circle shape? That is how I do it. The latter. I write the number 9 starting from right to left, as if writing in Arabic, which I by the way have no skills in doing. But that is not how I was taught.

Only in 7th or 8th grade, after having followed the example of my maths- physics-, chemistry- and gym teacher Mr. Å, did I switch to this much more simple and swift way of writing a nine. I saw him do those nines on the white board and it made all the calculations look so much easier! I tried it. Being 13 years old I was no longer forced to use pencils in school, but was, much to my happiness, allowed to use ball point pens, and I figured no one would tell me off for steering away from writing protocol… Continue reading