I own a mechanical typewriter. An Adler Gabriele 25. One of the last portables made before computers killed the mechanical typewriter forever.
I haven’t used it since jumping to computers. But I’ve kept it. I got it out the other day. Time has not been kind. The ribbon has dried. The white plastic cover has gone beige at the top. The rubber bushes in the carry case have marked it. It is dusty and looks unloved.
If anybody asks where I learned how to write – well, it was at the keyboard of this typewriter. It carries memories of failures and triumphs, memories of essays I’d rather not have written, but had to. I remember sitting at an outside table in the sun, bashing out the first draft of my thesis on it while Madonna’s ‘Get Into the Groove’ broke the silence. I remember using it, a few years later, when I got my first full time job – writing history books.
Yup, I got paid a salary to write books, once upon a time. On this typewriter.
Copyright © Matthew Wright 2012