a wandering woman writes

Monday, February 27, 2006

He's not giving up

Well, tomorrow I face my friend the bank teller again.

Last visit, he greeted me warmly, after my long month away in the States. He started counting my bills....then stopped......flipped my check over, sighed, and shook his head:

-OK, aah, there is it. Your signature.

He looks at me over his half moon glasses.

-You can sign wherever you want, you know.

-Oh, really? I answer, feigning surprise..
-In my country we sign it right up top there, like I did.

His eyes haven't moved.

-Wherever you want. You can sign it right down the middle, he adds, finally moving his eyes back to the 2 centimeter signature I've crammed up at the top of the check.

-In Spain you have the whole check to write on.

He finishes with a dramatic hand gesture, flipping his wrist to to show me just how "whole" the whole check is. The check does suddenly look much larger.

He catches my eyes again and holds me there. Pleading.

-Wherever you want, Erin.


I wonder if I am straining his eyes or something. Do you think? Do they give classes in how to invent your own 4 inch fully flourished never to be forgotten Spanish signature? A signature worthy of the entire back of a check?



  • It's interesting the way signatures change from country to country.

    To my knowledge, the only people who get a course on how to sign things are Notaries, but that's because their signature has to be relatively difficult to forge. Everybody else just seems to subconsciously learn from a feeling of machismo that their signature should be just as diffficult to forge. Or something.

    Other than that, the fashion round here seems to be for florid, angular, signatures with many crossovers, vertically and horizontally, that woul never *seriously* fit onto the little strip on the back of your credit card, which is why I assume they ask for ID these days ;)

    Signatures are time consuming, important affirmations that you approve of something. Not to be taken lightly, or done small. And woe betide you fi you can actually manage to *read* somebody's name in the actual signature, that's Just Not Right ;)

    By Blogger Moof, at 10:37 AM  

  • LOL, Moof. I went to a ferreteria today to have them cut me a long phone cord, simple thing, but I got a treat when the owner made me a receipt so I could pick up my cord tomorrow, complete with lovely florid, lines crossing illegible signature, his, and of course, the official ink stamp.

    I may have to do another post jus on the ink stamps.

    By Blogger wandering-woman, at 7:55 PM  

  • My landlord in Spain, Jesus Ferris, of the moving company, had an amazing signature. He started drawing a circle, and spiraled inwards until he couldn't spiral any more, and then, of course without picking up the pen, drew a perfect straight line for himself to sign on, and then he proceeded to sign the signature. I have tried to copy the style 100 times. It comes out like scribble. Not artistic scribble either. His, was magnificent. I am still in awe! I think it's best I can't emulate it. I'd be signing everything I could get my hands on. Walls, floors, whatever!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:38 AM  

  • Ha, it does sound like a work of art, Yusuf. It does fascinate me how the Spanish develop such gorgeous (if unreadable, as Moof says) firmas. At what age do you sit down and start designing your signature? And when do you know you're done...that you've got it?

    Bet nobody goes around forging your old landlord's signature, huh?

    By Blogger wandering-woman, at 10:05 PM  

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