Word, a Love Story

I love the blinking cursor—that bold black line on Word documents that oscillates between existence and nonexistence with metronomic regularity—but my love for this strange creature is a relatively recent development. Indeed, for years I had nursed nothing but hatred for that horrid imp. The way it appeared and disappeared incessantly, mercilessly, with the coldness of an android that has not yet breached the barrier of humanity—a Terminator brought to this time to destroy my confidence in my writing. When mind was running on pure inspiration and my fingers were firing on all cylinders, leaping quickly around the keyboard and giving life to words that spread out left to right across the screen in front of me, I hardly noticed the cursor—at certain speeds it disappeared completely—but as soon as I stopped, even paused for just a second…bam! There it was, blinking at exactly the same speed as always, mocking my inability to find the next words to say.

Oh, how I hated that cursor and cursed it and wondered why it was not called the cursee instead. Love is a bond not easily made—all the more so when it is being forged from the ashes of hatred—so it was a long time before I was able to change my feelings about my constant companion the cursor. It plagued me for years until I could take it no longer. This enemy needed to be faced head on.

What first began the transformation was an objective analysis of my original assumption: maybe this bold blinking line was not abominable, callous or critical. Maybe it was the opposite. In the spirit of the American judiciary, I gave the cursor the benefit of the doubt and considered the implications. Perhaps this tiny champion of word processing was my most benevolent benefactor, simultaneously cheering me on and fearlessly trailblazing across the page, charging into the great white unknown and leaving behind a procession of words that would stand as living testament of my thoughts for far longer than they would linger within my memory alone. Its cheerful blinking was a friendly challenge for me to strive on, to keep pushing the words to the front of my mind and down into my fingers, reminding me that it was there to do the rest, and would work incessantly, merrily, for as long as I did.

With this new mindset my writing flourished. Now the only obstacles to my writing were the limits of creativity and diction within my own mind, and these could be overcome with the help of my new friend. My mortal nemesis had become my greatest ally in the realm of writing.

A valued friend is always deserving of your love, and doubly so for the friend that has overcome your own short-sightedness. When the molten ore of hatred is smelted in the forge of shared tribulation and purified by the incorporation of absolution, it cools into the strongest alloy of love. I love the blinking cursor—or the winking cursor as I think of it now.


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