Monday, March 24, 2008

On Finding A Dead Mouse

Most likely, I was not the youngest person to own a typewriter, in my case one of those old, boxy Underwoods. I think it cost me $5 back in the 1950’s, if anyone here can remember that far back; if not, check with the next person you see looking through the steering wheel of their car.

Anyway, I used a typewriter before then, but it was a great day when I hauled this one home and could have my own. How old? Beats me; I do know I was a pretty good “hunt and peck” before taking lessons in high school and I think I was out of grammar school.

There’s not much to say about the workings of a typewriter. Occasionally you might get a jam when two keys go up at pretty much the same time, or the carriage might need a spot of sewing machine oil. Other than that, it was simplicity with a return bell.

It’s not the same anymore. You can’t jam the keys on a computer, of course, but you also can’t stick your fingers around the innards to fix whatever needs fixing. When you get a jam these days, they call it by some name, maybe a screen freeze or some such geek term like that.

My mouse has had a tendency to die on me. Everything else worked fine, but the mouse and the cursor just died on screen, neither moving nor breathing. I went through all the computer CPR to get it going again, but it happened so often that I tracked it down to the wire connection. And got a new mouse.


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