Typewriter Talk

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15-1-2017 01:12:18  #11


Re: Books, books and more books!

TypewriterKing wrote:

I don't know about 'yall, but this thread is getting a bit long-haired.

This seems unnecessary. It's properly filed under off-topic, other fellow was merely responding to my disappointment that there was not more lively discussion and I was enjoying exchanging some ideas about books. It is an appropriate not very far off-topic topic for typewriters, don't you think? Nobody is getting hurt here.

I may be erratic but at least I have paid my dues by posting a large number of photos showing a genuine interest in discovering and using different kinds of typewriters! I can't be the only one who has sometimes found the zeitgeist here cliquish since membership seems to have drifted into an old guard of end stage collectors who have discovered all they need to know and they don't do that acquisition thing anymore and obviously are not much interested in chatting about typewriters anymore and no influx of new stage collectors to take their places... they come and they go and as I say I cannot be the only one who feels like he is getting the silent treatment by a clique, because mainly they go and don't participate very much. Wonder why that is?

I like typewriters as physical instruments, as writing instruments, as examples of mechanical design and as marbles (trade you three swirlies for that aggie!) so it's an ideal kind of hobby, but I have to wonder why in the 8 million stories in the naked city there does not seem to be one typewriter user group (computer geek for "club"). Is there something inherently anti-social about using typewriters or is there simply nothing to say? People who play the trumpet make music and only occasionally talk about trumpets and people who make and repair trumpets may have shop talk but not much to say about music. They need to talk to each other and have good relations but they are not going to be hanging out at the bar together.

If you ever hear a clacking coming from the back of a row house in Brooklyn that clacking might be me - just another long hair in the naked city. 


"Damn the torpedoes! Four bells, Captain Drayton".
 

16-1-2017 00:54:14  #12


Re: Books, books and more books!

I apologize if I offended--when I speak of long-hair, I mean long, tedious literature, not the machines nor their collectors.  It is one of those old, archaic phrases, not dealing with actual long hair on a person.  Even then, I didn't mean to deride someone's preferences in reading.  I'm just saying that some of that stuff is a little bit heavy for me. 

As for old the old guard of end stage collectors--I myself have been collecting, repairing, and dealing in typewriters for over 35 years, but I have NEVER lost interest, no siree.  In fact, it is this knowledge that I have gained that makes me want to talk about them all the more.  I want to share my experiences with others so they can avoid some of the mistakes I made.  That's why you see me lurking around in the typewriter repairs section.  Typewriters have soul, and I want to help keep as many of them alive as possible.  Even though I might have "bagged the limit" as it were, since there aren't too many five dollar machines left (I used to get two or three every week back in the eighties and nineties), I still have a headful of stories I want to share to whomever will read and listen to me. 

So if ever I find myself around a row house in Brooklyn in the wonderful sound of type bars hitting paper and rubber, don't be surprised if a bald-headed, goatee-sportin' crazy Texan shows up with a thermos-jug full of the best tastin' coffee in the world, along with some pastry.  Chances are, he'll have alot of notes to compare with you.


Underwood--Speeds the World's Bidness
 

16-1-2017 10:10:52  #13


Re: Books, books and more books!

The Spanish translation was hideous. All these details are simply lost in translation, ignored by the translator. Sadly, bad translations are a plague in every language... One of the worst translations I´ve ever seen was the first Spanish version of Ulysses. The edition is so bad the chapters are in the wrong order! Apart from that tiny little issue, it makes no sense. True, the original Ulysses doesn´t make any sense in the first place, but the translated version is even worse. I tried it because I thought I wasn´t going to be able to read it in English, but that was a mistake. After all, I totally agree with one of my teachers back at the university: Ulysses are the ramblings of a drunkard called James Joyce.

And maybe I´ve opened the can of worms with this one

 


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16-1-2017 15:24:33  #14


Re: Books, books and more books!

Repartee wrote:

I can't be the only one who has sometimes found the zeitgeist here cliquish since membership seems to have drifted into an old guard of end stage collectors who have discovered all they need to know and they don't do that acquisition thing anymore and obviously are not much interested in chatting about typewriters anymore and no influx of new stage collectors to take their places... they come and they go and as I say I cannot be the only one who feels like he is getting the silent treatment by a clique, because mainly they go and don't participate very much. Wonder why that is?

You were absolutely correct to defend the content of this thread. Almost anything goes in the Off-Topic sub-forum, which is why it exists, and no one should derail an active conversation in such a manner; if you don't have something constructive to add, sometimes (often?) it's better not to say anything at all.

However, I did find your quoted comments to be rather unfair, and somewhat insulting. I would be the first to point out that there are many elitist cliques within the typewriter collecting community, and my dislike for them was one of the primary reasons that I started this forum. I wanted to create an open and friendly atmosphere for anyone interested in typewriters, regardless of their experience or commitment level, and if you review the content within this forum it's obvious that most of the members here are beginner, or inexperienced typewriter buyers.

This was recently discussed in another thread where you voiced your concerns about the lack of traffic here, and I thought the "old guard" adequately explained why they don't post as often as they would like to. I find it perplexing that you have made this something personal, or that you would reach the conclusion that you're being given "the silent treatment by a clique" because you believe other members are intentionally not replying to your comments. 

The goal of this website is to provide an open, inviting, and fun forum for anyone interested in typewriters, and along those lines any member should feel free to contribute as little or as much as they want. I think Typewriter Talk has achieved that goal, and has also demonstrated that although there are many people the world over who like typewriters, it's a relatively small number who love them enough to make them a daily focus. Anyone posting in a forum should do so without any expectations and because they enjoy it, much like gift giving, it's supposed to be an unconditional act, not one in which you expect something in return.  


"To save time is to lengthen life."
 

16-1-2017 18:17:32  #15


Re: Books, books and more books!

Plus, if it's beginners and newbies and the fresh blood of youngsters you want, go to <www.reddit.com/r/typewriters/>. You'll find most threads are over in two or three or so posts, though sometimes over twenty, and they are usually not revisited though some questions are repeated many times by newcomers who miss the FAQ in the sidebar. There is an awful lot of misinformation and guessing and hearsay. And there are some frequent posters of varying levels of authority. You will miss the very good organization of Typewriter TALK and you'll miss Uwe's knowledge and insights and focus. But then, you can bookmark both, eh? Not to mention <http://typewriterdatabase.com/>.

 

18-1-2017 06:47:03  #16


Re: Books, books and more books!

Uwe, I regret those comments and I did not mean to insult you. I was annoyed with another member who commented on the length of my hair which I also found rather insulting. If I am having a harmless discussion in the off-topic forum then whether I am a long hair, short hair, bald, Mohawk bearing or any other variation of hair is an inappropriate comment. But I apologize for seeming to criticize your entire community.

Freedom of association and all that, and if people who have contributed more in the past find that find that their preference is to contribute less in the present is their personal business. This is your group and you are making a great contribution providing this resource which you could pull the plug on at any time and takes your personal time to maintain and are owed thanks. I just think you might be concerned that when some of your more active original members fall silent that few or none arise to fill that gap?

Jeez Louise! I have something to say about the plots of novels and therefore am not a pure blooded good 'ole boy. It takes all kinds, so I would hope my infirmity would be tolerated. 
 


"Damn the torpedoes! Four bells, Captain Drayton".
 

18-1-2017 07:08:31  #17


Re: Books, books and more books!

Javi wrote:

For me, it´s just that I don´t like the setting and Mme. Bovary´s idiotic behaviour. ... Thing is she only cares about herself, herself and herself. I want to keep this spoiler-free, but it´s quite revealing Bovary´s name itself. She got it by marrying monsieur Bovary, a good and patient man with a taylor-made surname. Bovary comes also from the Greek bous, that is, bull. But Monsieur Bovary is more like a hard working ox, while his notable wife is the exact opposite. Why, in the name of the Minotaur, does she marry him, then?!

And that´s only the beginning of my problems with her. 
...

You can summarize it as a woman who´s never satisfied, unable to find satisfaction in anything.
 

Er... talk about missing the point! The novel is about the awful and enervating effect that Victorian sensibilities and morés had on women - and thus, we being connected, on men as well. If she's a monster it's because society has MADE her a monster by giving her very little education, respect, legal autonomy or real choice. Her husband is a doctor, the pinnacle of respectability, and the book is about how respectability can't save you. It was a seismic book - considered very shocking at the time it was published because no one had even shown these things before - and opened the way for Ibsen, Strindberg, Tolstoy, Chekhov, and indeed feminist literature. 

I note that you also hate Jane Austen, who brilliantly described the social and economic processes by which women were made into monsters, while being treated as chattels - and let us not forget that at that time women  in law WERE actually chattels - at the same time as virtually singlehandedly turning the 18th-century novel into the 19th-century one. GREAT! All about whether you 'like' it. Okay. 

Note also that you preferred Wuthering Heights, because it has surprisingly 'more violence' in it (you mean the abusive male?). Yet another novel in which the woman who wants something has to die. 

Note also that you actually love The Silmarillion, which pretty much tells me why you should not be trying to talk about the meanings of novels about the lives of women. 

 

18-1-2017 07:47:10  #18


Re: Books, books and more books!

The novel I've been reading lately - which I had to interrupt because a lot of other books came up that I needed to read for work - is Golden Hill, by Francis Spufford. A brilliantly joyous romp set in New York City of the mid-18th century. It was essentially a little Dutch port back then. A really fun book, fresh and interesting. It seems a little thin on plot, but in any case plot isn't really necessarily the point of a novel - it's just the mechanism for it. 

I'm researching a lot of stuff about the 18th century at the moment - mainly about London, but there's a little transatlantic angle. I have a book lined up that also looks really interesting called An Empire on the Edge: How Britain Came to Fight America, by Nick Bunker. It'll be about the diplomatic and political machinations and also the growth of public opinion in the colonies. But the rest is mainly either C18 political theory; the Federalist Papers, Mary Wollstonecraft's Vindication of the Rights of Women, and essays of the Welsh moral and economic philosopher Richard Price, whose thinking influenced the US Revolution (he was visited here by people like Franklin, Jefferson, Paine...).
 

 

18-1-2017 13:16:32  #19


Re: Books, books and more books!

Several things to address here... But first of all, maybe I wasn´t accurate enough with some points. I apologize if I have offended you in some manner, it´s never been my intention to offend or to mean anything bad for women.

KatLondon wrote:

Er... talk about missing the point! The novel is about the awful and enervating effect that Victorian sensibilities and morés had on women - and thus, we being connected, on men as well. If she's a monster it's because society has MADE her a monster by giving her very little education, respect, legal autonomy or real choice. Her husband is a doctor, the pinnacle of respectability, and the book is about how respectability can't save you. It was a seismic book - considered very shocking at the time it was published because no one had even shown these things before - and opened the way for Ibsen, Strindberg, Tolstoy, Chekhov, and indeed feminist literature.  

I think this is a matter of different views... I don´t think mme. Bovary is a monster because the world made her to be it. She is a strong woman, so strong that she goes against the stupid morale of her time. She doesn´t need anyone to push her in that direction, and the impression I got is that everything she did, it was because she wanted it that way. Is that bad?

Of course the world she lives in is against her, and that´s a reason why I have Victorian times (and by extension I don´t like Victorian literature), but I don´t feel inclined to praise her. Monsierur Bovary was chosen by her, not the other way round. In fact, he only wanted the best for her and there´s a point where he would lend her a helping hand, but at the last moment he recoils "because that would bother her". And that hurts him more than anything, not being able to help! That little scene summarizes the relationship between mme. Bovary and her husband: it´s the other way round compared to "normal" marriages in Victorian times. She´s not abusive, but the strongest part. Is that bad? Of course not!!!

The thing is that I can´t stand people who´s always dissatisfied with everything. Madame Bovary is tough enough to go against the trend, she is capable enough to get what she wants... but nope. It´s never enough. As soon as she reaches a self-imposed goal, that´s wrong for her. Even if getting to that point has cost her a titanic effort, once she has it, she starts hating it. Why? Why not being able to find satisfaction in all the little things? The world is bad enough as it is, no need to make it worse AFTER having set it right for you. That´s what I can´t understand. Again, is it bad to disagree with a character?

KatLondon wrote:

I note that you also hate Jane Austen, who brilliantly described the social and economic processes by which women were made into monsters, while being treated as chattels - and let us not forget that at that time women  in law WERE actually chattels - at the same time as virtually singlehandedly turning the 18th-century novel into the 19th-century one. GREAT! All about whether you 'like' it. Okay.  

It´s not that I hate Jane Austen herself or the relevance of her works. Far from it. Lightyears away from it. PARSECS AWAY! I mentioned somewhere that being forced to read something is a sure path to dissapointment. Jane Austen has been forced down my throat at the university, and most of the time I spent reading her I was like "let´s finish this, please". I am well aware of what a great writer she is, and I know perfectly how important and groundbreaking her novels are. But I still wouldn´t go back to her. Too many bad memories (I know, this is a personal feeling, nothing to do with Jane Austen and her works), and also a setting which I don´t like at all. This last thing is a bit like not reading horror novels because you don´t like the genre. That doesn´t make you an idiot... I hope. It´s a matter of preference, and I´ve had enough of C19th English literature against my own will.

KatLondon wrote:

Note also that you preferred Wuthering Heights, because it has surprisingly 'more violence' in it (you mean the abusive male?). Yet another novel in which the woman who wants something has to die.  

Wuthering Heights is different for me because I was in far better disposition to read it. First and foremost, I wasn´t forced to do it, and that´s a huge difference when it cames to enjoying it. The violence surprised me because I wasn´t expecting to find it there. In fact, the sobrenatural / paranormal elements are even more surprising! The violence is pretty much everywhere in Wuthering Heights, several characters (mostly men from all condition, from the horrible Hindley to the despicable Joseph) show no respect from anyone, and seem to be poised to abuse anyone on sight, no matter the gender. Those characters represent something very human, something I despise, and at several points I found myself clutching the book as if I were taking some of these people by the throat because they deserved it. If a book makes you feel involved with the characters, then it´s hit the mark.

Wuthering Heights went far beyond my expectations, and I liked it far more than Pride and Prejudice. But at the same time, I´d say Pride and Prejudice is better written, it´s stronger in the formal aspect. But I still don´t like it.

And of course it´s not that I like it because I enjoy seeing how a woman has to go through all kind of suffering in order to get something as basic as fair treatment. Don´t make me look as if I do.

KatLondon wrote:

Note also that you actually love The Silmarillion, which pretty much tells me why you should not be trying to talk about the meanings of novels about the lives of women. 

I read other things apart from Tolkien (just in case, to clarify...). I perfectly know where Tolkien is, and he´s far from being the best writer in the world and far from being an example of ethics. Again, it seems like it´s bad if I don´t overly enjoy Jane Austen because I don´t like Victorian times, and even worse if I prefer the Middle Earth than Sussex. It´s just a matter of preference, I don´t only read looking for technical achievements or the greatest literary works of all time. I also want to enjoy it, just the pleasure of reading.

To make it even worse, I guess I´m a monster because I "enjoyed" El Túnel by Enresto Sábato. In the very first sentence, the main character admits having killed a woman. Obviously that´s not why I enjoyed the book. In fact, more than enjoying it it´s again a matter of being sucked into it. It´s a delirious and painful experience, better if you read it in one go (it´s short enough). In fact, this book is so twisted it´s bound to be loved or hated. I think it´s a great book, something that has to be experienced (apart from read), and most probably something that will make you hate Sábato and tag him as a depressive drunkard who should vanish from existence. Reading that book disqualifies you as a normal person because it´s about a total nutcase?

So, I´m not trying to offend anyone. I can try to explain my points as best as I can (and not in my native language, which can lead to misunderstandings), but please don´t make me look like something I´m not. I´m not a women hater, and I don´t enjoy books in which women are abused because I love that kind of scenes.
 


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18-1-2017 21:53:49  #20


Re: Books, books and more books!

Wow sir. I apologize if I in any way have led you to write an apology for! I apologized also - you see where discussions of literature lead?  (I chose that emoticon carefully to represent some kind of light-heartedness without an air of complete insincerity as might be implied by ... or   or  )

I promise to read your long reply seemingly mainly to KatLondon... but meanwhile, returning to the original topic... If in some alternate universe I were fluent in Spanish and been given the task to translate into English a book with strong regional dialects which would have been understood as such by a Spanish reader, I'm wondering how I might render such a thing?

The only good answer I can come up with is to invent some dialect or accent in English which embodied some characteristics of the Spanish dialect and did not sound too much like any English dialect. If the Spanish dialect broadened all the vowels then my English equivalent might do the same, but at the same time should not sound like a recognizable English language accent which might imply, for example, that they were speaking Spanish with a Scottish accent, for example (hair raising thought!). I believe writing in accents is considered poor taste by some and some accents are absolutely unacceptable for contemporary English but preserved by such authors as Mark Twain, who wrote southern slave dialect. As did William Tecumseh Sherman! I enjoyed his memoirs - one of the trio of Union officers whose lives would have ended in obscurity had not a good bloody war given them a chance to work in the metier for which they had been trained, and write about it.


"Damn the torpedoes! Four bells, Captain Drayton".
 

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