Wednesday, November 23, 2011

In the Smithsonian

Last Friday, I was in Washington, DC with a couple hours to kill waiting for an 8:00 PM flight from National Airport.  Whenever I can, I love to spend a little time at any one of the Smithsonian museums.  On this occasion, I stopped at the Castle for a few minutes on my way to the Freer Gallery, just to find a quiet spot to work a little email.  There are a few items on display in the Castle itself, though, and I could not resist snapping this photo of an IBM Selectric in the west wing.


I forwarded the photo to Police Chief Jim Peschong, who keeps one of these Mesozoic relics in his office, ostensibly for the occasional envelope, or self-carbonated form (for extra credit: what is "carbonated?").  I have refrained from informing him that he could print an envelope on his HP LaserJet, but nonetheless, I often rib him about his Selectric.  "You're in the Smithsonian!" I said in the text accompanying the photo.

A few minutes later he replied:

"You didn't have to go all the way down there to get a photo of one.  Stop by sometime and take all the photos you want :)
       Sent from my Verizon wireless Blackberry"

No doubt he will also be the last man on earth using a Blackberry :) . I snapped a couple of other shots on my way down to the National Mall.





9 comments:

Eric said...

Carbonated or making a "carbon copy" is a method of transferring one's original handwriting from an original piece of paper to another. C.C. is the electronic form in emails. I have a box of carbon paper in my closet in case I ever need it.

I also have a baby blue Corona-Smith Coronet XL electric typewriter sitting on my desk, too, for forms and envelopes, etc... I have the feeling that the new Police Chief and I could get along very nicely with a nice chat if we ever needed to ;) heh.....

Eric said...

I forgot to add that there's something that keeps on making me want to us that old typewriter. The whirling of the motor, the clicking of the typebars, the old-fashioned look of the letters on the paper after you type it... it's just kind of a novelty that never gets old!

Tom Casady said...

Eric,

I don't have a full box, but I've got a couple of sheets of carbon paper and onion skin in my "history" folder. Mulling over the used Smith-Coronas, Underwoods, and Remingtons at Nebraska Typewriter down on 11th Street in about 1969, I choose the Remington. Wish I had kept it. But I do have a cool application for my iPad, the Amazing Type-Writer. Love sending emails with that from time to time, and get to enjoy the sound effects while doing so.

Anonymous said...

Tom-So I'm thinking about trading my bag phone for a Blackberry but I noticed there is no antenna visible on the Blackberry. Can I still make calls? Should I ask Chief Peschong since he is clearly a "techie"?

256

Anonymous said...

I bought a typewriter earlier this year, just to fill out my CHP renewal app for the NSP more neatly than my usual chicken-scratching. My penmanship has gone way downhill in the past couple of decades.

Steve said...

8:47

Fortunately, penmanship is not a requirement for CHP, though I'm sure being able to read your application will help. FYI, I submitted my renewal application on a Tuesday morning and received my new permit in the mail that Thursday afternoon.

The Rev. David Couper said...

I am sure those of us who went into policing can remember typewriters -- some things have improved while others have not. I was the chief in Madison, WI beginning in 1973 thru 1993. I learned some stuff along the way and have written another book on improving police. It should be out early 2012. In the meantime, I have been blogging excerpts. I would be interested in what you think. http://improvingpolice.wordpress.com

Pastor Fuller said...

Ha, we about fell out of bed laughing at the Blackberry joke. Good one!
Chaplain

Pastor Fuller said...

Ha! My wife and I about fell off the bed from that Blackberry joke. Good one!
Chaplain