Yesterday, while we adults tried to sort out some of the old junk still hanging around the Berlin apartment, the kids intercepted this gem and saved it from the dumpster.
It’s a “Reiseschreibmachine” – a portable manual typewriter that I bought in 1991 when I first arrived in Germany and was waiting for the first real Mac laptop to come out. It cost me 20 deutschmarks. (How strange that this is now a dead currency.) “Portable” is relative, since it weighs about 25 pounds. The keys jam and occasionally a letter comes unhinged altogether.
The Tiger calls it “some kind of computer.” He’s got no other category for it. But even though you can’t use it to connect to YouTube or play games, both kids are acting like it’s the best new toy, ever. They’ve spend the past 24 hours playing with it and fighting over it. Then we showed them this (non-Dutch speakers may fast-forward to about 1:15):
Or, if you want the original version of it, here’s the best performance I found (non-German speakers may want to skip the first minute):
Those of you who played in high-school band probably remember performing Leroy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride.” This piece of his, “Typewriter,” is a little more obscure, but more amusing. I’m pretty sure the French horn part sucks, regardless.
And now my kids are trying to make music while typing “the quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog.”