I’m not sure were it came from or how it started, but I’ve always had it. I can clearly remember being six or seven years old, walking down the aisles of stores or Price Club (that’s right, old school), seeing a typewriter and later computers, and feeling the need to touch the keys. It became a thing. Every time I saw one somewhere, I had to type something on it. Not just anything. My mom’s full name. A-S-T-R-I-D-D-E-L-C-A-R-M-E-N-B-E-L-T-R-A-N. Weird, I know, but I HAD to do it!
Around the age of 7 or 8, my mom gave me what I think was my favorite toy EVER: the PreComputer 2000. In researching for this blog, I could only find an image of the pre-precomputer 2000.
This baby taught me how to REALLY type. Legit: all fingers on the keyboard, not the two-finger-peck. The PreComputer had all sorts of educational games for vocabulary and math and what not, but I mostly just played the typing game. The first level would start with just a line of individual letters scrolling from right to left, and you had to push the corresponding key before it got to the left side and disappeared. As the levels went up, the letters became words, they threw in upper case and lower case (that was a biggie), and they started to go faster and faster. I’m getting all giddy just remembering how much I loved this game!!
At the age of 9, my mom and I moved to Guatemala to live with my grandma. My uncle Franky was probably about 15 or 16 at the time, and a couple afternoons a week he would walk up the hill from our house to the typing school. Yep, a typing school. My dream come true! haha. I remember walking by the school holding my grandma’s hand, on our way back from the mini-market or the meat market, and looking at all these 15 and 16 year olds sitting in front of typewriters, typing away. I’m sure the last thing they were doing was actually being productive, but still, I was soooo jealous! I remember seeing some of Franky’s homework and being amazed: they made all sorts of designs and drawings with the different letters and numbers (ok, maybe that was just Franky and at the time I thought he was actually doing his homework, but still). I couldn’t wait to be old enough to go to my typing class. I remember going to a relative’s home and their son was typing some sort of report or something on the typewriter, and I was just watching him type (can anyone say creeper?). He asked me: do you know where you should be looking when you’re typing? The keys, duh. I was flabbergasted when he said no. The screen? No. Huh. That was when I learned that you should be looking at whatever it is you are copying from, and therefore, you have to have every key location memorized!
Unfortunately, we moved back to the States when I was 12, so I never got to take my Guatemalan typing class, but I still learned to type. And I still love to type. The faster the better. Jeff’s mom always makes me feel good about myself when she comments on my typing, and Jeff just laughs whenever I’m typing on my blog: he said it sounds like there’s no possible way I’m typing coherent sentences. Years of training have paid off!