The Signature Of A Man: A Moment With Bill Reflection
A Few Words of Explanation Before Toby Takes Over
Oh my goodness, I remember it well, the countless hours being taught penmanship by the nuns at St. Patrick Grade School in Tacoma, Washington. “No, Bill, that B is not right yet. Keep doing it until it is perfect.” I hated the lessons and yet I loved the end result, beautiful cursive that I was so very proud of.
Those days are gone now. I often wonder what a handwriting expert would think of my cursive now. As the fine motor skills have deteriorated with age, my once-proud penmanship has been reduced to chicken scratches.
Over the same extended period of time I have grown as a person. When I write William Dale Holland it means so much more than it once did. The William Dale Holland of today is a man you can trust. He is a man who is lovable and a man who knows how to love. Today I am proud to write William Dale Holland because of what those three names signify.
And what about you? What does your signature stand for? Who is the person that writes your name?
I’m going to turn this over to a good friend of mine, one Toby King, the main character in a novel I am currently writing. I’ll let Toby tell you his thoughts on the signature of man.
Greetings from Toby King
“Put pen to paper my friends. A little cursive, a little script, a little Palmer Method of swirls and loops, all designed to state to the world who you are. See how it flows, from brain to hand to paper, a name to designate a person to designate a personality to designate the essence of….and that leaves us with a dilemma now doesn’t it?
Hey, there’s Bob, hi Bob, how ya doing, Bob, catch you later, Bob and yep, we all know that dude as Bob, but what else does Bob stand for? Who the hell is Bob? Quick word association, come on, play with me, you know you want to….I say Bob and you say what? First thing, I say Bob and you say what? Hey, endless game so let’s hurry up….okay, easier one, I say Toby King and you say what? I say Mary Jane and you say what? See where I’m going with this my friends? Our name signifies so much more than a label.
So what would people say if I said your name? Would they associate words like compassionate, empathy, kind, generous and loving, or would they traipse off into the woods of selfish, uncaring, egotistical and cold? Worth considering don’t you think? Worth straining the brain for some answers, cuz what we see in the mirror is not necessarily what others see in passing, and there’s the rub, eh, there’s the rub. Rub a dub tub three men in a tub and how’s that for a strange image, so go the other direction and rub with some spit shine and polish up that image because the world is watching, the whole world is watching, and you are the star of the show.
When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are, but wishing ain’t reality and the reality is that your name stands for something, it stands for you, and if you don’t think that’s true then I want some of that stuff you’re smoking, cuz I ain’t jokin and jiving, this is serious shit or at least it should be.
Let’s try again. Mary had a little lamb its fleece was white as snow, but who the hell was Mary and what was she doing hanging with sheep, and Tom, Tom the Piper’s son, but really, folks, wasn’t Tom a whole lot more than just a son? Was he a husband, father, friend, anyone know? Did he give to the poor and help the homeless? Did he rail against injustice and did he stomp out hate whenever possible?
I’m just getting started. Jack can be nimble but can he be sprat? Is it possible for a person to be both, and what does that say about Jack? And do we really know anything about Little Bo Peep? Would you vote for her? Look around the corner and you’ll see Jack Horner, lurking in the shadows trying to sneak a peek at Miss Muffet and her tuffet, and that’s a bit sick if you ask me, that obsession with tuffets, but we have to compare that fetish to those of Poll Parrot and Polly Flanders, two minxes with some serious issues, or maybe they are just sweet and innocent and it is us who have issues, and it’s all so confusing now isn’t it?
How can we know? They sign their names and it signifies who they are, but how can we really know?
Hi, my name is Toby King and I am a writer…and I am a friend…and I am a drunk….and I am a son…and I am a believer in love…and I am a sometimes selfish sonofabitch….and I am what else? What else am I? Will anyone ever know? And if they don’t know then whose fault is it?
This is the dilemma we all face, every friggin’ day of our lives, are we walking the talk or just flapping our jaws and making sounds? Are we living our names or are we raising the bullshit meter? Are we who we purport to be or are we faking it till we make it if in fact we ever make it, make it, roll it up and toss it in the oven, 350 degrees for one hour, smell the aroma, smell the aroma, deliciously delectable or rotting decay, now that is, indeed, the question we must all ask.
So there you have it, the question for the Ages, what does your signature stand for? Stand up, be counted, raise your voice to the heavens and declare to the world who you are, what you are, why you are, because without that signature, without that name, without the actions to back it all up, then you are just so many swirls and loops upon a piece of paper, and that’s no legacy at all.
Something to Ponder As You Go About Your Day
Thank you Toby!
I was blown away one day when a casual acquaintance told me that I appeared to be sad most of the time. Now this was a person who knew me only in passing; we really had no in-depth communications; we were just two people passing each other on a semi-regular basis. Still, their opinion of me opened my eyes. What was I doing that gave that impression? It came as a shock to me because I am really quite an upbeat person who loves life. How could this person have missed the mark so badly?
Or did they?
What I intend and what I actually portray can be so very different as I found out that day. I can write the most beautiful words about love, but if I am not living those words then they are just vowels and nouns upon a page. It is up to me to live my words. Nobody else has that responsibility.
And so I Ask You
What does your signature stand for? What do you stand for? Are you living your beliefs or are you simply stating them?
Yes, my name is William Dale Holland, eighteen letters in all, a first name, a middle name and a last. Dale was my father’s name, so we have a continuation of the family ties in those four letters. Holland is a proud name, standing strong over the years, facing challenges and living by an ethical code based on doing to others as we would have them do to us. William is the torch bearer, the patriarch of a diminishing family, the story-teller whose job it now is to make sure that what this family stood for continues through my actions and the lessons passed on to my son.
When I write those eighteen letters I remember it all, and a sense of pride flows through my veins, and hopefully I will never again be confronted by a casual friend confused by the signals I am sending out to the world.
2013 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)
“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”