My birthday present from Ed showed up today. He had given me just one hint about it: “It’s really heavy, you’ll probably only use it a few times, but it will be really neat to have.” The 40-pound present turned out to be a Remington Standard Noiseless 6 typewriter. It officially ranks as one of the top three coolest presents he’s ever given me (the others being my Boba Fett painting and my game-worn Jim Slater Thrashers jersey). The typewriter is in great shape: one knob broke during shipping, but I can easily glue it back together.
And why is a typewriter such a great present? Ed’s reasoning was, “Well, you’re an author now.” That really does sum it up. I look at that Remington and picture Ray Bradbury, my literary hero, pounding away on the pay typewriters in the UCLA basement. Supposedly, Mark Twain bought an early Remington model and is credited as the first author to ever submit a type-written manuscript.
What it really comes down to, I believe, is thinking about all the authors who found success after typing away on a machine like that Remington. Sure, technology has changed and I do my clacking on a laptop now, but the sentiment is still valid: if they could do it, then so can I.