Saturday, June 22, 2013

Sunday is Typewriter Day, which would be a nice tie-in with National Newspaper Columnists' Day except for one thing

Several of Usual Suspects say that Sunday, June 23 will be National Newspaper Columnists' Day. The problem with this, however, is that the National Society of Newspaper Columnists says that National Newspaper Columnists' Day was April 18. We here at The Blog of Days figure that the newspaper columnists ought to know when their own day is, so we'll defer to them on this one.

Meanwhile, Sunday really will be Typewriter Day, another of those days celebrating an obsolete and rapidly vanishing technology. You youngsters in the audience may see something in the accompanying picture that you can interpret as a keyboard, can't you? Well, this device, kiddies, is known as a typewriter. And look -- it's the same QWERTY keyboard layout that's on your laptop or the virtual keyboard on your iPad. But you can type URL's on this device all day long and not be connected to a single website! And, what's more (or, perhaps, more accurately, what's less) you have to check your own spelling! Nor is there a control key -- no copy and paste on this device.

And yet, somehow, your decrepit ancestors managed to transact business using these ancient devices -- and, believe it or not, typewriters were deemed a great advance over scratching letters out with a pen.

You kiddies think that keyboards only make muffled clicking noises, if they make any noise at all, but a battered old portable, like the one shown above, made a healthy, percussive clicking noise as the keys really did strike the ribbon against the page (you rolled paper into the typewriter, kids, there was no separate printer) while the old IBM Selectrics had a bass hum to go along with its much different electric-click-striking sound. Some of the older newspaper columnists will remember, anyway.

Sunday will also be Pink Day, a day to wear something pink for no particular reason. The United Nations says that Sunday will be Public Service Day. Go forth and help someone on Sunday -- wear pink if you must -- then go home and type up your exploits for your memoirs.

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