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Bex's comment yesterday about having to re-type a page, back in the good bad old days (the 60's), before computer editing. It was such a pain....

I remember typing my 50-page Master's Thesis on my portable typewriter (a Royal, I think). Every page had to be perfect, no erasures, no using erasable bond. The topic was the birth of democracy in India, the timeline up to 1947.

If I made a typing error, I had to pull out the sheet, insert a new one, start the page over.

It wasn't so bad if the error was near the top. There were just a few lines already typed, but no matter, no hardship to do them over.

What really got to me was when I made an error near the bottom of the page and had to re-do the whole thing. And as the hours wore on, past midnight, into the wee hours of the next day (when it was due), my accuracy rate plunged to the worst ever.

What a waking nightmare.

Then I had an epiphany. If I hit a wrong letter, could I think of a way to re-word what I was writing to incorporate it, so I didn't have to start over? I got very creative about using near-synonyms, or even rewriting whole paragraphs, rather than the exhausting and boring alternative of re-typing it.

When the thesis was done, I biked over to the history building; submitted it to the chairman of my committee: and collapsed into a 10-hour coma. (His comments and praise the following week included a mention of my "creative" writing. Little did he know.)

Since then, I've been a fairly accurate typist, if I do say so myself.

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