I had a tendency, instead, to be so busily and speedily creating I didn’t notice any specifics of the typing mania, I just felt the buzz and the pop and the joy of throwing words out as quickly as I could.
I was hard on typewriters as a consequence and my father actually went out and bought me my own typewriter as a result. He was afraid I would break his fancy electric typewriter with the power of my finger pecking on the keyboard.
It is the only time I remember my father purchasing something specifically for me.
I was on the school newspaper in this ridiculously loud middle school typing room. One day I was particularly inspired to write a piece about music and my fingers just took off as I wrote about Carly Simon and probably James Taylor. This was before I knew about Jackson Browne who would soon become the object of my musical fascination (and more, as a healthy thirteen year old girl obsesses over a sensitive singer-songwriter-poet who also has great hair.)
I remember Mr. Seymour, my seventh grade English teacher who also instilled in me a distaste for off-color language as being something only the unintelligent needed to stoop to use, walked into the room that day. He watched me write. He acted as if it was important, my ability to write so quickly and with such focus.
He walked out of the room and then back in, his eyes wide, his head shaking. He chatted with Mrs. Behrmann, my typing teacher, about what he was witnessing in me as I typed away maniacally in the back of the room.
These were among my most satisfied moments of middle school.
It was something I had, something I was good at, something that took me away from the awkward discomforts that came from being overweight and cursed with both glasses and braces.
I would have loved to be higher on the peer pecking order but if I didn’t have that, at least I had the typing room and Tap Tapnik posters on the wall and the respect of my teachers.
If I allow myself the space, I feel sad to think this sound won’t be replicated on a regular basis. Typewriters are having a resurgence lately, but their presence will never be what it once was. We’ve evolved beyond classrooms of the clatter of manual typewriters, the dings, the swoop of the carriage when one came to the end of a line.
My godson loves coming to my house to type.
I collect typewriters now and realize as I wrote this I could easily orchestrate a “type-in”.
Maybe as a Christmas Season gift to myself I will do exactly that – or perhaps on the anniversary of “The Yellow Wallpaper” in June I will create an event. It will give me time to collect more working typewriters.
Typewriters are disappearing to most people. They are not to me.
This post was written in response to the prompt at StoryADay.Org.
The prompt is “Today, write a story that features people disappearing.”
Throughout September I will write lifestories inspired by prompts from this challenge.
You may still join (and I hope you will!)
Julie Jordan Scott inspires people to experience artistic rebirth via her programs, playshops, books, performances and simply being herself out in the world. She is a writer, creative life coach, speaker, performance poet, Mommy-extraordinaire and mixed-media artist whose Writing Camps and Writing Playgrounds permanently transform people's creative lives. Watch for the announcement of new programs coming in Fall, 2015 and beyond.
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