I taught myself how to write in cursive by first grade. It wasn’t too difficult and I thought it would be impressive if I started to at least write my name in cursive on in-class assignments. My teacher promptly came up to me and said, “You need to re-do this and write your name in print, please.” I asked why and she replied, “Students aren’t allowed to write in cursive until the third grade; that is when you learn it.”

I didn’t understand it then but looking back it was a pretty good set-up for the rest of life; people will take any sort of authority they can to regulate others into whatever bullshit system they’re associated with.

I tried it again in second grade and got the same result, and then third grade came around and we spent something like six weeks using flour-filled trays to draw out each letter. It’s probably good that I was only about 8 years old and waited until high school before I started talking back to teachers.