Monday, September 1, 2008


I'm just going to blather a bit tonight ... kinda sorta forgot that it was my day to blog on the Acme Author's blog. Having a holiday on a Monday throws off my grove, kind of like having chicken on fish night.

So let's see what I come up with:

(I can hardly wait).

Okay, first of all, I'm good. And how do I know I'm good?

Well, it took a happy little mistake ... one that I make on occasion while 'touch' typing. Touch typing, if you don't know it already, means that you can type without looking at what you are looking at. If you don't touch type, here's how it starts. Put your left forefinger on the 'f' key ... then put your right forefinger on the 'j' key. the rest of your fingers fall on a,s,d, and k,l,;.

Um... this wasn't a misprint. Your little finger on your right hand is actually on the colon ... the key, not the organ. (yeuch, just got a visual).

Anyway, on rare occasion I put my fingers on the wrong starting keys with my fingers one key to the left. I assume you're sitting at a keyboard. Do this and type my name "norm" and check out what happens.

You get this ... "bien".

'Bien,' as I remember it from high school Spanish XXX years ago, means bald ... er, good. So I'm good, but only when your hands are off. Somehow this isn't surprising, huh?


Well, enough about that, because this whole exercise reminded me of something I learned once. We all know that the standard "Q,W,E,R,T,Y" keyboard is ridiculous. Look down at the keys in front of you. Now type ""

Are you there? Hah, tricked you. Just tried to get you to go to my website. Anyway, the QWERTY keyboard (the top left keys in order) was invented by Bob Qwerty because he was pissed he couldn't get dates due to his aixelsyd ... er ... dyslexia.

Heh... just kidding again. It was invented and patented by some dude in the 1800's named Christopher Sholes. And get this, the gun manufacturer Remington actually bought it from him, like this makes any sense at all.

But this is where it gets crazy.

Have you ever wondered about the QWERTY keyboard? I mean, think about it. It's set up so that the most often used letter 'a' ... (now don't anyone argue with me that 'e' is more used, or 's' ... I don't care if I'm write, er, right). Anyway, you have to use the pinky of your left hand for the 'a' key.

Why's this? Why use the most awkward and difficult finger for the most popular key? Are they trying to beef up the pinky? Mebbe make it into another forfinger ... um... fourfinger ... dernit, forefinger?

And exclamation keys!!! I LOVE exclamation keys!!!! So where's the exclamation key? Yep, top left, so it's a long pinky finger reach.

That's such a pain. It should be front and center, right where I can hit it with my forehead when I'm banging my head on the keyboards. But no, all you get if you do that is 'GH." What kind of a sound is 'Gh'? If you bang a couple times, you might be able to forehead-type GHHHH ... which is about how you're feeling if you're going to bang your head on the typewriter.

Anyway, the point of all this is that the QWERTY keyboard was actually created to be difficult and to slow down your typing. That's because when the first typewriters came out, they had keys, so they could open locks. No, just kidding, but there were keys that would strike the paper. But if someone typed too fast the keys would get all jammed together.

So instead of coming up with a better typewriter, Mr. Sholes decided to make it a less efficient machine so it would slow down the most skilled typists.

How cool is that?

If he were alive today, Mr. Sholes would most surely be ... a minister in the George Bush cabinet.

(Oh, darnit, I leaned too far left again).

Done blathering ... gotta go.


The Adventures of Guy ... written by a guy (probably)
The Next Adventures of Guy ... more wackiness
The Heat of the Moment
Fang Face (young adult vampire/humor - coming Aug 09)


June said...

Thanks for the morning chuckle! After spending all weekend at the keyboard, I totally get the GH thing, cause yep, I think I have them imbedded on my forehead!


Margot Justes said...

Hey Norm-bien-Francais not Espanol...