Postcard #20 – Who Wants to Take a Ride on This?

by syaffolee

One of the first things I noticed about this postcard from Indonesia is the interesting way that the sender wrote the date. I admit, the first thing I thought when I saw it was, “Why the heck is there a fraction on this postcard?” I don’t think anyone I’ve ever known writes it that way.

Because I’ve been educated in the US, I generally write all my dates as MM/DD/YY (or MM/DD/YYYY). Occasionally I use hyphens: MM-DD-YY. I do not use periods or decimals such as MM.DD.YY although I’ve seen other people use it. My reason for not using it is practical. Since I work in science and deal with numbers on a daily basis, I do not want to mistake the date for a data point. Forward slashes and hyphens are unambiguous. I don’t use the European style DD/MM/YY although it makes logical sense because I live in the US and everyone else doesn’t use it. For my computer files, I use yet another format, the ISO style which is YYYYMMDD. It just helps with my organization.

As for writing dates on postcards, I generally write only the year or month abbreviation + day + year (i.e. Oct. 1, 2016). I write the month abbreviation rather than just the number because it’s less ambiguous that way.