Tuesday, April 22, 2014

My Vintage Sperry Rand

Notice anything new on my library bookshelves?

Well, I'll give you a hint. This object is not a book. And it isn't new at all. In fact, it's pretty darn old. Technologically obsolete, to be exact.

Yep. You found it. My husband's old typewriter.

Now, I went to college back in the Dark Ages. Which is to say, before personal computers were as prevalent as blue books and red kegger cups.

But my husband got his education during the Triassic Period, when students actually owned these nifty and highly portable little machines, on which they banged out papers in late-night typing sessions that must have been filled with curse words and tiny bottles of white-out

I sure hope they had white-out back then. I can't even imagine how they would have survived without it.

And while I never owned my own personal typewriter, I grew up in a home where the slightly more modern electric typewriter was a standard piece of equipment, right up there with the electric carving knife and the digital clock radio. Every Sunday afternoon, my mom would crank up a piece of paper, switch on the magic power button, and clickety-clack through the front and back of the page with a newsy note to my grandmother. Fascinated by this grown-up tool, I often used it to compose anonymous messages and secret documents. 

For the past several decades, like most of his typewriter bretheren, this model has lived in the shadows. Oh sure, we busted him out every now and then during my daughters' childhoods, so they could conduct typeface experiments just as I did. But for the most part, this trusty dude stayed inside his custom case, quietly collecting dust in the back of the hall closet or stashed in the garage. 

Somewhere during the last few years, manual typewriters have made the trendy leap from history to hipstery. Postmodern decor mavens dig the retro look, and a quick cruise around Pinterest or the revered design blogs will reveal trusty old-school typewriters tucked here and there as fashionable accessories.

So, you know, I figured the time was right to bring this good ol' boy back into my life. Artfully arranged with my husband's equally antique college texts, this vintage Sperry Rand looks right at home.

P.S. Speaking of artfully arranged good ol' boys who look right at home, say hello to Ranger, who is napping peacefully nearby.

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