I think it was Mrs. Ware, my fourth grade teacher, who tried to teach me to dot my "i's". Or maybe it was Miss Flaugh in fifth. Anyway, I'd been ignoring this cursive nicety for too long. I could see the point in crossing the "t's", but the "i's" didn't have it for me. It seemed like a waste of time. My cursive was legible. No one had any trouble reading it, and I'm sure that included Mrs. Ware and Miss Flaugh.
I think it was Mrs. Ware. She was always telling us interesting stories, such as the one about the lost civilization of Atlantis. "That island sank!" she proclaimed dramatically. Civilizations are lost that way. Perhaps a civilization in which the citizens failed to distinguish between their p's and q's and refused to dot their i's was doomed.
The blackboard stretched across the whole width of the room. Mrs. Ware made me write a string of i's across the full length of the board. Then I had to go back and dot every single i.