A little-known fact about me is that when I started my 30-year career in education in the early 1970s, it was as a high school business teacher. I also taught shorthand and business law, as well as 7th and 8th grade English, since the entire small rural school district that hired me was contained on one campus. (I had majored in English and had a double minor in history and business education.) Most of my career was spent teaching literature, but my roots were in a clickety-clack classroom full of manual typewriters.
I taught my students flawless posture and hand position. ("Sit with your back straight, feet squarely on the floor under the table, one foot slightly ahead of the other, fingers curved and hovering above the home row, making sure the heels of the hands are not touching the machine!") I also taught my students the art of correction. ("Strikeover in my class on pain of death. Don't rub that eraser back and forth...gently, gently, in one direction and then another. No, you can't use correction paper or fluid until you master erasing!") I insisted on proper word division ("Hyphenate only between syllables. Use your dictionary if necessary.") and insertion of an omitted letter ("Erase the two letters between which the missing letter should go. Then, with the type guide over the first blank space, pull the carriage back and hold it, so that the key will strike very close to...but not touching...the previous letter. Repeat till all three letters fit into the space of two.") OK...so the last one depended heavily on my modeling the process for the class...but you get my drift.
Anyway, I've been looking for a manual typewriter for the last year or two, and I finally bought one. I'll admit publicly (and I can hear Ton groan as I type this) that I am guilty of being what most die-hard Typhosperians would consider crass and shallow. I wanted a machine with a sleek, modern body and a pretty color that would match my decor as much as I wanted one that would be fun to type on. I have no defense. They're right about my crass shallowness. I almost groaned myself when I typed the word "match."
I had placed a bid the other day on a really cool orange Smith-Corona Super G and lost. Combing eBay again, I saw some pretty turquoise typewriters, but were they decent machines? One seemed especially promising. I looked through some of Ton's old posts and there it was. The one he had seen at a flea market was missing the front protection plate, so he hadn't bothered to ask the price. But then he added that he probably should have. That was enough for me. After being assured by the seller...for whatever that's worth...that it was in excellent working and cosmetic condition, I made an offer on this snazzy little Smith-Corona Corsair Deluxe that was accepted instantly, and I've already made room for it on the kitchen bar/workspace. More photos will follow when it's safely (and stylishly) ensconced there...and I'm stocked up with ribbon and typing erasers and ready to typecast.
|My latest purchase...a Smith-Corona Corsair Deluxe|
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