Thursday, June 9, 2011

Was it Miss? Or Mrs? Arietta Leonhart

The 13-year-old granddaughter can type faster when she texts her friends than most of us could on a manual typewriter. It's the way things are. Arietta Leonhart was a pretty good instructor from what we can recall, rigid about not watching your fingers, watch the copy instead, minimize errors, and other bits of advice that serve well on a PC keyboard as well - but not on the blackberry, iPhone, or whatever device the granddaughter has.

The other day we got an email about "Remember when . . . " that included a photo of an old manual typewriter such as was used under the tutelage of Ms. Leonhart. For some reason that email disappeared, and thinking that a photo of a facsimile might be of interest for a posting, we found Google was good enough to produce a truckload of relics - for sale!

Pictured here - a couple of amazing values. Amazing that anyone would pay so much for what clearly is not functional, nor having any practical value, so only the "treasured item" category can apply, and unless
your name is Leonhart or you labored mightily in her classroom, you probably won't have enough sentimental attachment to pop for the prices being asked.

The Olivetti at top? $425 at Amazon. The Royal? $115 at Ebay. All so you could practice typing 50 wpm, using whiteout, listening to the clatter and the bell, ah the good old days before keyboards. And it wasn't easy when the keys had to be pushed about 2 inches to actually make the letter hit the page. You are probably familiar with many of the difficulties standing in the way of good performance . . .

We're reminded of the student who was extremely intense during a timed typing test. When the bell rang to indicate time was up, he leaned back, big smile on his face, and said, "Perfect!" He was indeed proud of having no errors - even when Ms. Leonhart asked how many words had been typed during that minute. "Eight!" he said.

God bless Bill Gates!

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