Alone at the Typewriter, With an Unusual Use of Mozart

Image source: here.

At 53, I’m old enough to have needed a typewriter to write papers, as an undergraduate, back when I was still living with my mother in Little Rock, Arkansas (USA), and attending the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, or UALR. Majoring in history, I wrote many. When I did this, I had a certain ritual about the activity, one that fell from use once I made the much-appreciated transition to using computers, instead.

First, I had to have the typewriter in the center of the living room, oriented at a 45 degree diagonal to the walls. Next, I had to be wearing a bedsheet, wrapped around one shoulder, toga-style. No other clothes were permitted. Finally, I had to have my vinyl version of Mozart’s Requiem playing, over and over, from the time I started the paper until it was completed. This would generally happen early in the morning, on the day the paper was due, procrastination being one of my defining characteristics at that age.

I’m glad I don’t have to write papers anymore, and that the typewriter era is over.