Living: Nowadays, Writing Is off the Wall

So say the nation's penmakers, and they have a point

Nearly everyone has had the frustration of receiving a phone message, restaurant bill, mechanic's receipt or note from the boss that turns out to be about as easy to decipher as Egyptian hieroglyphics. Weaned as they are on telephones, typewriters, computer print-outs and other communications gadgetry, Americans have simply forgotten how to write clearly —when they write at all. So bad is the situation that the Writing Instrument Manufacturers Association, which annually celebrates John Hancock's birthday, Jan. 23, as National Handwriting Day, has...

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