by Mike Rosso
When we approached Buena Vista artist Brynn Ronning about featuring her artwork on our April cover, she offered us quite a few suitable “springtime” options.
But there was something about that typewriter, maybe a bit of nostalgia – the clacking of keys versus the sterile sound of today’s computer keyboards. Perhaps it was the affirmation of actual ink on paper – a medium some seem a bit too eager to write a premature obituary for.
I’m old enough to have worked in a newsroom chock full of chattering typewriters – along with the obligatory clouds of tobacco smoke. It’s hard to believe today that such an environment even existed, though it really wans’t that long ago.
I don’t miss the cigarettes, nor the carbon paper or Wite-Out, but somehow that room full of loudly clacking machines, along with the teletype and furiously chiming telephones, gave the impression that the important business of news-gathering was indeed taking place. Today’s newsrooms are virtual mausoleums in comparison.
It does make me wonder if we’ve lost some of the excitement of journalism through our electronic devices. Surely the race against the clock to develop film is history. Now a reporter can shoot with an iPhone and message the image directly to the editor in a matter of seconds. The tools are more modern, but are they in fact making us more lazy? The keys on a typewriter took some real effort, not to mention the carriage return after each sentence. Now we just tap the “save” key and we’re good to go.
Yes, the modern news-gathering equipment would probably cause the old-timers to salivate if they had access to it, but I do wonder if some of the passion has been lost. Judging from much of what passes for news in the mainstream media today, it does appear to be sadly lacking.
The history of the typewriter, at least according to Wikipedia, is quite extensive. The Italians seemed to be at the forefront of much of the development of the machine. It was a fellow named Francesco Rampazzetto who, in 1575 designed a device he dubbed the scrittura tattile, designed to impress letters onto paper. In the early 1800s, three Italian men all came up with their own versions of a typewriter. But it took three Americans –Christopher Latham Sholes, Carlos Glidden and Samuel W. Soule – to develop the first commercially successful typewriter.
Now on to a quick bit of business. As most of you have noticed, we’ve had to raise our rack price and subscription rate to keep up with rising postal costs; so far, it hasn’t impacted our renewals, and for that I’d like to thank our readers. The postal folks have warned of yet another increase in April, but we’re just going to absorb that one.
And speaking of mail, the Salida post office is no longer processing bulk mailing. Everything goes to Denver now, so I would be surprised if there weren’t some glitches in the system. If your subscription is up to date, and you’ve had some issues go missing, please drop us a line and we’ll gladly replace them. We’d hate for you to miss a single issue.
If you’ve moved and have a new address, the post office will not forward Colorado Central. You should let us know as soon as possible so we can get you updated in the database. Just contact us via email, letter or phone call and well fix you up!