The Alchemical Socialite


There she is, ladies and gentlemen. How can I possibly describe the feeling of having my fingers on the keys of a real machine again, slamming out the clicketys of a pouncing metallic onto the permanent page? My 1967 Olympia Socialite: she advances, she dings seductively at the end of a line, she reminds me of the first writings I ever made sitting at my father’s desk in front of the old Corona Sterling – only more meticulous, less athletic, sexier.

I’d forgotten about the sweet bell and the zing of a finished line. It took me about ten minutes, but the exquisite rhythm came back. Forget all those aching, ridiculous typing classes I took in high school. Those had a secretarial aura that insisted the point of using the machines was to type up someone else’s words. Quickly. No wonder I dreaded those drilling hours. If Mrs. W had put a woman’s typewriter in front of me and told me to have at it, I might have actually done it without rolling my eyes.

It’s typewriter abracadabra. I know it sounds crazy, but the entire world slows down and attends when I’m at the keys. The computer is a ravenous time-eater and feeds my embarrasingly short attention span. I swat web pages like gnats. Not so on the Socialite. On her the words are heavy and sentences have a sound. I can actually hear myself think. And that pesky “rewrite while you write” problem? Forget it. Each keystroke is an unregetted decision. Even when I pause or find myself a little stuck, my nails rest on the home-keys and restlessly tap until the words come.

And the words do come.

9 thoughts on “The Alchemical Socialite

  1. I am so jealous. She’s a beauty. I got a comment on my weatherman blog from-drum roll please-the weatherman himself, maybe. I think Todd Carruth may be behind this.

  2. what a nice piece of equipment! are ribbons still available for them? do they take ribbons? it seems like my aunt’s used to, but hers wasn’t as sexy as yours. myself, i’ve never used a typewriter, and i’m a little upset about it.

  3. I DO know where to get ribbons! Go to < HREF="" REL="nofollow">Fresh Ribbon<> and look at the links on the side. Ribbon galore!It’s a fun little typewriter, isn’t it?

  4. Mondo, I’m enjoying your blog. Thanks for your comments on using a typewriter. I’ve had much the same thought myself lately and have started shopping for a portable. Perhaps you see me using it to typecast my blog in the not too distant future.Thanks for writing such an enjoyable blog.

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