(practice girls, practice! your future depends on it)
Back when I was in high school, as the earth's crust began to cool, girls were encouraged to take a typing class. After all, typing was a skill that you could always fall back on if, say, your wild idea about applying to medical school fell through. Being a doctor is a nice dream, but the smart girls knew that typing skills were the secret to success.
Typing was hard work. If you made a mistake, you had to rip up the paper and start over. You could also simply back up and type X's through the word. But Mrs. Carlyle, our typing teacher, frowned on this.
"Executive secretaries do not X out their mistakes, girls!" said Mrs. Carlyle with a frown. "Follow directions, please. If you practice, some day you may earn several THOUSAND dollars a year. Think about it - you could buy a MixMaster AND a vacuum cleaner with your very own money! Imagine how delighted your husband will be."
We all rolled our eyes and vowed to apply to medical school if it killed us.
But - being creative and extremely bored children, my sisters and I often played with our mother's typewriter at home.
- We closed our eyes and typed away, then howled hysterically at the nonsense we had written.
- We put on music and typed to the rhythm.
- We hit 6 keys at once and then tried to untangle the little metal bars without breaking them.
Sometimes we even practiced actual typing. Here is a little sample of our typing, which I came across the other day:
(the first sentence looks like a text message I once sent by mistake)
These days, nobody uses typewriters. Thank God. But I wanted to submit some greeting card ideas to a certain company last week, and their submission guidelines require each idea to be typed onto an index card.
Typed?? Onto an index card?? How was I supposed to do that?
I tried to feed index cards into my printer, jamming it time and time again.
I wracked my brain, trying to think of somebody who might have a typewriter. (the library? the local newspaper? an antique store?)
Finally, I had the brilliant idea of typing each idea onto an oversized Avery address label, then sticking the labels onto index cards.
I never did follow directions very well. But I get the job done.