Joe Biden really proud of Obama’s much improved penmanship
October 2, 2009 2 Comments
However, Obama still has room for improvement, says Biden- especially with his uppercase “W” and his lowercase “t” and “f”
WASHINGTON, D.C. - When it comes to the topic of handwriting, Joe Biden calls himself “old-school” for believing good penmanship is the mark of a courteous writer who truly values his readers. Biden first took notice of Obama’s sloppy writing a few years ago while the two were still U.S. Senators. Yet, it wasn’t until late 2008, when Biden read an illegible hand-written memo from Obama that left the VP dumbfounded as to what was written, that he decided to take action.
In an effort to keep the matter internal, Biden approached Obama in private and offered to give him secret handwriting lessons. Much to Biden’s surprise, the President enthusiastically accepted Biden’s offer and the two met on a bi-weekly basis for secret handwriting lessons in the Oval Office until mid-September.
Sources close to the VP say the process of transforming the President’s writing has been a monumental undertaking for Biden. The VP’s friends in the handwriting community actually tried to dissuade the VP from taking Obama on as a student, saying “coaching someone as old as Obama is impossible, he’s too foregone and entrenched in his writing style already.” Biden began to wonder if his friends were right after the initial lessons with Obama ended disastrously.
The VP started to question whether both, he and the President, were too old and if maybe they had bitten off more than they could chew in trying to change Obama’s handwriting. Despite Biden’s extensive handwriting coach experience, he had never taught a student over the age of fourteen, and more than twenty years had passed since he last gave anyone a lesson.
As the President’s struggles continued Biden began to doubt whether the lessons were a good idea considering the more important issues facing Obama. Biden was on the brink of scraping the penmanship lessons altogether when his wife suggested he watch Obama’s campaign speeches on “Hope” and “Change” before giving up on the President. The suggestion worked as the very next day a newly inspired Biden convinced the President to devote himself to a grueling daily regiment of 3 hour-long writing lessons.
Soon, penmanship became an obsession for the two as they met for lessons whenever they could, often canceling speaking engagements and fund raisers just to squeeze in some more handwriting time. Their fascination over handwriting became so apparent it became the subject of jokes amongst White House staffers, who started refering to Biden as Obama’s handwriting czar. Rahm Emanuel even joked that the President was going through so much ink and stationary that the lessons were a just a clever cover up of the President’s efforts to bailout the slumping pen and paper industry. Despite all the jokes and whispers that the President should be addressing more important issues- their commitment to penmanship never wavered, and only grew over time.
The President’s handwriting underwent such a drastic improvement that in mid-September Biden reportedly told Obama that he had nothing left to teach him. Biden told his Presidential apprentice he had surpassed even his own penmanship abilities, and gave Obama a rare Elephant tusk Mont Blanc pen Biden’s father had given him to commemorate the President’s hard work and achievement.
As a way of showing his gratitude for all of Biden’s efforts, Obama held a press conference a few days later in which he put on a penmanship exhibition few in the handwriting industry had ever seen the likes of. Obama fluid and steady pen strokes displayed the skill of a master, and even wrote a whole paragraph backwards from right to left for his big finale. The President’s exhibition was so impressive that many penmanship industry insiders have suggested Obama enter in the 2009 Bic World Penmanship Championship to be held later on in December. Registration deadlines for the competition are fast approaching, but the President has not commented on his decision to enter the competition. But sources close to Obama say he’s really only 60% sure he won’t be entering the competition.
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