When I was in eighth grade my dad took me to Richard and Chambers in Turlock and bought me a typewriter. It was an Olympia typewriter. When we were ready to pay for the typewriter the clerk started selling dad things to use with it. She must have known how proud dad was to buy the typewriter for me.
The clerk brought out different types of paper. Dad picked a package of regular paper and a package of “onion” paper. The “onion” type paper was supposed to be for special reports. It felt rough. I remember smelling it to see if it really smelled like onions. It didn’t.
Next the clerk showed us several erasers, different types of liquid white-out, and brushes. Dad picked an eraser shaped like a pen with a brush at one end and an eraser at the other. Once a word had been erased I was to immediately brush any remaining traces of rubber away. The last things dad chose were a packet of carbon paper and extra ribbons for the typewriter. I was set!
My typewriter looked just like the one pictured here. I remember pretending my school work was a secretarial job. I felt important having a typewriter. The fact that I would hunt and peck my way through anything by teaching myself to type didn’t seem to matter. I remember the first report I handed in typed. My teacher, Mr. Carr, was a saint. He bragged about it but I remember many corrections and smudges on that report.
We didn’t have a lot of “extras” but dad was determined I would have a typewriter. It was a big deal. That was one time I was as up-to-date as anyone in my class.