Many customers that come in the shop tell me a familiar complaint. Their family, friends or co-workers make fun of them for using a typewriter. It can get pretty rude too. What made me think about this now was a conversation I had with a customer earlier in the week. He's a writer in the Harvard Square area who has written all his books on a Smith Corona typewriter. He happily calls himself a luddite and thinks that the people hooked on technology are the clueless ones. We have had lots of interesting conversations over the years usually along these lines. He calls up about a problem with one of the typewriters and soon starts to talk about how his sister is always teasing him about his always writing on a typewriter and not a computer. She says he should just throw away all his machines. He responds that he could no sooner throw out his typewriters than she could throw out her cats. To this she got very mad and slammed the phone down and hasn't talked to him in a week. "She just doesn't understand my relationship with my typewriter" he says. "Typewriters are like close friends to me. They are a part of me now." We talked for awhile about this, then I had to go because a customer came in. So he says, "I think I'll call up my sister now and mend fences."
I'll bet I hear this kind of story at least once a day. I know that I get teased alot, especially on service calls when I'm in a office fixing a machine. People will walk by and make comments like OMG, whats that! The suits are the worst. "Don't you feel like a dinosaur" or " Boy, you're a dying breed." That doesn't bother me because they're walking back to their cubicle to stare at a computer screen for six more hours. Take that! I think that there's a lesson for tolerance in there somewhere.
I happen to think that people who use typewriters are amoung the most interesting people I ever meet. They are creative people doing fun and interesting things in their lives. Its always fun to talk to people coming in the shop for the first time.