The weeks have gone by so quickly. There has been pain, there has been happiness; there has been short summer nights and long days of sweltering heat. There has also been many days of writing, and dirty days of refurbing several old, old typewriters. My oldest now is a 1929 Remington Portable 2 that had been a metal-rusted and rubber-melted mess. But now he is sparkling and re-rubbered, and of all my typers is the best working one so far.
It is very quickly becoming an obsession. I am up to 5 typers now. There are so many absolutely gorgeous machines out there, I can understand why people love them so much. What I cannot understand is how they want to have 5 of every kind and year. There are some out there that act like Crusaders needing to save these machines from key-choppers and jewelry makers. One such collector has built displays for his collection and has openly admitted to never using them! Just typing that makes my chest ache. I am happy to report though, that several excessive collectors do loan out their machines to schools and libraries and other functions so as to get people to play with them and perhaps grow new passions and collectors, or at the most a new user with one old machine.
I had been that later person for several years, having randomly found a wonderful Royal Royalite about 5 years ago now. It was in such good condition, I never considered what one in ‘bad’ condition would be like. Not until last year did I think of ‘collecting’ or even looking for another typewriter. On another random trip to the bookstore I found what is now becoming my Holy Book: The Typewriter Revolution, and the world as I have lived in it has completely changed for the better. My latent inner-engineer has finally found a purpose! Like a diabetic that has been cured and has discovered chocolate and ice cream, I have become a demon-possessed junky that cannot consume projects fast enough.
Now, as the heat of the summer dies down, and I can go outside without fear of sweating to death or burning, I think my Need to find my next dirty typer will calm down a bit. My Need to write on them will not, thankfully. There are 3 machines I am still on the hunt for: a Mockba (mohsk-vah) Russian Cyrillic; and a cursive machine, preferably Olympia, Underwood, or Smith-Corona; and then a really horribly terrible, derelict machine that I can tear down into each individual part without fear of never being able to get it back together. My own little, sick version of dissection from the high school biology class I never had to take. If I come across something absolutely spectacular, I will certainly consider taking it home, but it will need to be something extra-special. I already made the ‘buck-fever high purchase’ mistake once, and don’t want a repeat of that buyer’s remorse.