Sunday, May 15, 2011

Typewriters - iTs bEtTer tH4N thIs

I just heard that recently, the last company that manufactured typewriters just closed. It was the Godrej and Boyce - a factory based in Mumbai, India. I can just imagine the employees standing before metal gates, watching it shut down forever - ala flashback scenes of  Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (I meant the movie. Don't get all hipster on me). A spokesperson, who happened to be one of the employees watching the metal gates shut down forever said in a stereotypical Indian accent "The gates will reopen when the crow turns white, when snow comes to Mumbai, when sand comes to Siberia, when Snooki wins a Pulitzer prize, when Snooki successfully spells Pulitzer, when the epic meal time guy joins PETA, you know I can go on and on with the....wait please let me go on. I don't have a job."

Yesterday, I saw the old family typewriter on the table. In a spin, I was suddenly  an Ophidiophobic professor with a whip and a hat and started brushing the artifact for its archeological significance. That's when I realized a question - when was the last time I used the typewriter?

2001 - a time when kids were embarrassingly playful with WordArt and boastful of  the primitive Wikipedia of that time - Encarta, I was using the typewriter to type such ground breaking essays as "What I did last summer" and "What do I want to be when I grow up". I didn't mind if my homework looked like it was Jack Nicholson's draft on The Shining, whilst my classmates' homework looked like unicorn puke.

It just seemed like yesterday. But that was like 10 years ago. I was 9.

Sometimes, I like using the Courier font. It gives the feeling of nostalgia, when all seemed to be in sepia tone. Many people don't like it. Especially people my age who haven't even had the opportunity to use an actual typewriter. It's weird that the same people aLsO tYpE lIkE diS iN dEr fAcEbUk sTatus.

On a slightly unrelated yet very related note, I think people who easily forget and even shun old technology (or history for that matter) are people who are victims of the darker side of capitalism. They are also the same people who insert the word "like" in between every two words, and are also the same people who think remakes are the original ones. I hate them. But they are the powerful majority that makes up our world. Does that make me a hipster? Slightly.

I like the sound of of a typewriter. It makes me feel like I'm in a World War movie. (Not that the feeling of being in a World War is something to like). I compared it to the sound of my computer keyboard. It makes me feel like in a crappy 90s spy movie where a hacker miraculously breaks into something just by typing extra fast. Makes me remember the last time I used a floppy disk. Believe it or not, it was in 2008.

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