Typewriter Twenty Two : September ’16

Stumbled upon this post for the first time? Don’t know what this is about?

Let me tell you!

Are We There Yet?

I find it difficult to write to people who I know too well, or those who I don’t know at all. In either scenario, I can never fathom what it is that I should write to them about. If it’s someone new, I wonder what it is that would interest them? What would make them want to write back to me? What would strike a chord somewhere within? And well, if it’s someone I’ve known, the biggest stumbling block is finding something I haven’t already discussed with them. How do I tell them something new, when, in actuality, they’ve probably heard every thought that’s meandered through my mind?

But, you know, there’s something about writing that just comes to me. It just happens.

Effortlessly.

..almost

The other day, I was working on a typewritten piece for one of my really close friends. I sorta-kinda had something I wanted to say through the letter. So I sat myself down, did my little ritual of feeding paper into that beauty, adjusting the margins and then checking the spool and ribbon.

Then came the words.

Hey, you.

And, after a full fifty three minutes and forty one seconds, I had eloquently expressed all I could.

Hey, you.

I finally sat down to write to you.

Six more minutes didn’t add as much as I’d like them to.

Hey, you.

I finally sat down to write to you. And, I don’t really know what to say.

Seventeen minutes later, I knew I had to stop staring at that sheet. So, I decided to work around this situation; I put the typewriter aside, picked out another sheet of paper, and..a pen.

Twenty three minutes, and two more sheets later, I put the pen down and lifted my head and smiled. I felt like I knew what I wanted to say, just not how to type that in, before.

No matter how much I loved typing on the typewriter, no matter how fast my typing speed got, no matter how close I thought it was to me, I felt like we just might not be there yet.

There? What is this ‘there’ I talk about? Well, ‘there’ is that level of comfort you reach with somebody, that place where you can talk to them without inhibitions, where they just get you, where they almost complete your sentences, where it’s effortless.

That’s there.

So tell me, love, tell me, are we there yet?


Like what you see?

Check out the previous edition of Typewriter Twenty Two here.


Typewriter Twenty Two : August ’16

Reading this on my blog for the first time? Don’t know what this is about?

Let me tell you about this!

Cast a Spell.

I don’t like re-reading letters. If I’ve sent you one, I’ve probably written it in one go, without crossing out words, let alone lines. Recently, I wrote something for myself, and read it after a few days.

Once I did, I realized how much we rely on our computers or mobile phones or another electronic devices to assist us with our sentences. A green squiggle is formed each time the device *thinks* we’re not constructing sentences as per the grammar rules. And, let’s admit it, we’ve all depended on the red squiggly line that appear beneath the words we type to save us from trivial, but often embarrassing mistakes!

I figured I’ve made so many minor typos in that one note I wrote! Typos I tend to ignore because my brain *knows* that they’ll be auto-corrected on any device.

I can’t believe I’ve gotten so used to technology helping me out at each step. It makes me wonder, will spelling and handwriting become obsolete gradually? Will we start completely relying on technology when we want to write? Will we let the device think on our behalf?

More importantly, is that what we want?


Would you like to read a little more?

Check out the previous edition of Typewriter Twenty Two here.

And, the next one, here.


Travel Checklist : 7 Unconventional Items

I was thinking of a few things that help me enjoy my trips better, so I thought I’d list them out. Do you relate to any of these?

1. Decide how you’d like to document the trip.
Well, a lot of us go in thinking we’re going to blog every night, or put up pictures online daily, or maintain scrapbook, but then, reality strikes. Most of us end up procrastinating or just get too tired by the end of the day to follow through. So, think of a realistic way you’d like to document it, so that you don’t miss out on the little things you’d like to remember from your trip.

Check out this really fun way we decided on, here!

2. Stop looking at pictures. NOW.

Yes, I know you’re excited and you want to go through every picture ever taken at your travel destination. But, I request (?) you to stop, stop now!
Stop because you must let some things remain new to your eyes when you get there. You’d want to be able to stand in front of the windmills in Netherlands and say “Woah! That’s such a wonderful sight”, and not “Yeah, I’ve seen this before on Instagram, from a better angle probably. What’s next?”

3. Collect your friends’ postal addresses.

This is for when you had a great time in a city and want to send a postcard to your friend. But, what’s their address? Damn.

4. Use a separate device for music.

Phones are well-equip to carry massive music playlist and click HD photos, and help you keep in touch with loved ones, but, the last thing you want is ending up in a long bus ride or in the middle of a Skype call back home with the low battery sign. Or well, just carry a portable charger.

5. Fine-tune your to-do list

In place of letting your London to do list read just:

London Eye
Westminster Abbey

..and so on, add little things to do like, things unique to that place like

Ride on the Double-Decker Bus
Buy an umbrella!

6. Find a way to backup photos!

 Yes, in this day and age, this might seem a tiny bit obsolete, but this is a must! I had a horrible experience this time, when I took photos from our DSLR and didn’t back it up. Towards the end of our trip, the card showed a “Card Corrupt” error, and thrust us in a state of panic. I’m still trying to recover files from that card.

Find a way to backup photos, or take photos from multiple devices; the pictures we took from our iPad were our saving grace.

7. Carry a few a snacks from home, if you’re visiting a different country

You’re probably going to laugh at this one, after all, when in a new country, you’d probably like to experiment with their cuisine. But, that can get a little taxing. There will be times when you crave a familiar flavour, and this will save the day.

Letter Writing : Wait, What?

I’ve been writing letters to anybody who asked me for one, for more than a year, now. And I decided to compile the questions most people have.

This is an attempt at getting through to more people, some of who maybe hesitant to ask me what this letter writing thing is about.

: Are you really doing this letter bit?
– Oh yes I am! You’ve got to fill up the form here, and I’ll send you a handwritten or typewritten letter.

: Okay, why are you doing this? What’s in it for you?
– It’s like a hobby I’ve cultivated. I don’t like how the personal touch is being replaced my technology, I don’t like how instant everything is; I like to pause for a bit, make that effort and make somebody’s day, it just makes me happy, I guess that’s how I can put it best. It just makes me happy. To read why I like to write in the first place, click here.

: I see you say that you’d write to anybody who asks for a letter, what will you write about if you know nothing about me?
– You could tell me if there’s something specific you’d like me to write about, I’ll try my best to write along those lines, if not, I’ll pick something I’ve been thinking about, or something I really care about.

: Alright, that sounds okay, so how long is my letter going to take?
– It takes a while to write, a few weeks at least, because I like to take my time and write only when I’m (for lack of a better term) *in the zone*.
And, then, depending on how far you are from me (geographically), it’ll take a while to reach.

: How long does it take after you’ve posted it?
– A few weeks, for sure. It’s a little unpredictable though. There have been times when I sent letters from Kolkata to Bangalore and they reached in 3 days. THREE. So, it’s kinda really erratic, so let it take it’s time.

: What happens if my letter doesn’t reach, even after a few weeks?
– Well, then there’s a chance that it got lost somewhere on the way (yes, that happens very frequently). I worked a way (sorta) around it; I take pictures of all the sheets before sending them, so if the letter gets lost on the way, I could send you that. I don’t know how else to resolve this, suggestions are welcome.

: I see a “Contact Number” section on the form. Why do you need that?
– The postman (yes, I said postman, and not Amazon delivery guy :P) might have trouble locating you, this is purely for his convenience, but I understand if you’d rather not divulge that detail.

: How will it reach me?
– There will probably be a letter box in the locality you live in. It gets delivered there, or at your doorstep. I’d like you to find out the closest one to your place. These are usually on the basement/ground floor of a building and look a lot like this.

: So, you’re telling me that all I have to do, is fill in my details here?
– Oh, yes yes yes!

: Can I write back to you?
– It would make my day if you did. Take the (not-so-subtle) hint! But before writing to me, do read this.

IMAGE CREDITS: KANIKA MATHUR

Typewriter Twenty Two : July ’16

A classic case of don’t judge a book by it’s cover.

I remember one of the thoughts that crossed my head when I saw the typewriter first (after *OMG THIS IS SO COOL*, *I CAN’T BELIEVE IT’S FINALLY HERE*, and a rant about love at first sight) was:

Wow, that’s so compact!

It’s 10.1″ x 11.5″ to be precise, (yes, I measured it for this post). Which is very compact and optimal for porting. Well, if you’d like to visualize it, 10.5 would be approximately the height of a 1 litre Aquafina bottle and 11.5″ is slightly smaller that the longer side of a A4 sheet, (or did I just confuse you?)

Fair enough, right? Seems like something that’s easy to carry. So, I rushed over to pick it up and analyze it, and as I did, I realized, hang on, the size isn’t all that matters.

The weight. Damn.

The typewriter weighs a lot more than you think something as compact and petite would, it’s like you couldn’t have known, unless you actually tried holding it up. Now I’m not really sure how they would be practical to carry around. They look compact, are “wireless”, seem low maintenance and come in a carrying case; they were meant to be portable, right?

But, are they?

Stay tuned in to find out, more next month!


Check out the previous edition of Typewriter Twenty Two here and the next one, here.