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“Try to take a few steps. The fit seems right.”

Explore the simple neural mesh controls.”

“Heh, the mechanism is lighter than it looks, easy-peasy. Yeah, I like it.”

“The design team went all out. Durability was key.”

“I’ve never had eight legs before.”

“You’ll be fast too.”

“Really, how fast?”

“We lose more test subjects that way.”

 

Lemuel

4-3-18

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Vintage Manual Typewriters, Captivating

Captivating

    Typewriter Olympia SM9 frontal pic1

For writing I chose a portable manual typewriter.  The venerable writing machines are captivating old technology that still convey messages and data to others. Typewriters of this ilk are productive with only human power. The use of these machines has given me new insights into my writing process.

I do not reject the “instant”, the digital, nor the have-it-your-way-now world. I watch as words develop instantly on the monitor. I enjoy digital spell checker. I add new words to the computer’s dictionary my way. I still produce documents with typos.

That is my feint in making comparisons. From my view there are no comparisons I find compelling, digital versus manual. In short, I am a different writer when I use a typewriter.

There it is, the human aspect of humane letters or writing the latest RSVP. I could text my response to an invitation. “Write and sent. Done and done,” next task please, “and done”, very efficient, slightly cold and clammy.

I chose to type or hand write a reply since the sender used an envelope and a stamp to get my attention. I responded in kind. Also, I am engaged in a different way.

I might ride a motorcycle or I might ride a horse. I love them both. I go from point A to point “” however I can. I am a different rider on a large sentient animal than one astride a large engine connected by two wheels.

The differences make me different, that is captivating.

Typewriter Joy, Typical

Typical

SC 1951 5S Silent Rep Clean 2-16-18 1B

I wrestled the typewriter from of its crate.  I was pleased it had been so well protected, not the typical experience. The extra armor helped the venerable Smith-Corona Silent to resist a thousand dings as it bounced to my front porch.

The only ding I wanted was the brassy bell at the end of a typed line. Ding, is crisp authority as, “go to the next line”, then the metallic echo fades and the typist pauses. There it is;  the meditation of typing with a manual typewriter, cacophony, followed by silence.

As well as I can tell this typewriter was created in 1951. Typical of a machine of its age it had accumulated grime, dirty typefaces (the letters), and had parts hidden in “gunk”. All of this required gentle cleaning and downright scrubbing. It was a usual day at the work bench.

After my ministrations I added a new ribbon and closed the cover with a snap. I cranked the platen knobs and the mechanism rolled a sheet of paper up into proper position. The Smith-Corona Silent was true to its name. It waited. It also inspired me. It propelled me into the realm of writing, and as transported on a new journey, I pressed the keys.

It was a day of joy when I typed a line about a jaunty fox over-leaping a drowsy canine. *

Such a delight. I could get used to it.

 

*”The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.”