The thing I hate about people who can touch type is their unbearable smugness when they sit near me, eyeing my clumsy, two-fingered attempts at document production while they beat out an unholy rhythm on their too-slick computer keyboards.
Clackety clack clack clack comes the irritating, crisp, springy tune that inspires their sycophantic colleagues to simper, “Oooh, you’re so fast. I must learn to type properly.” And they scuttle off to enrol on a typing course at Pitman Training, enabling them to join the insufferable tribe of those who have taken the trouble to learn to type properly.
As for the rest of us who have never got around to taking a typing course, we’re condemned to a future of being peered at over the copy typist’s spectacles, worn with the disdain of a turn-of-the century clerk of the court in pince-nez.
But is it jealousy on my part that stirs such feelings of inadequacy in my burning breast? Certainly not! It is merely the superiority of knowing that those who have undergone typing training courses are mere automatons, pecking at the keyboard, unseeing, at the whim of their corporate bosses.
How I pity them as I picture them now while I stand in the loading bay of my local discount shop in the first driving drizzle of autumn, waiting to unload another consignment of short-life biscuits, novelty keyrings and cheap batteries.
No! I’m happy with my lot in life and shudder as I think more deeply about these over-skilled prisoners of the modern office and how, not content with conspicuously displaying their typing skills, measured in hyper-competitive words per minute, they add fuel to the fire of their arrogance by flaunting their advanced Word training, inserting tables at will, mail-merging and tracking changes as though their lives depended on it.
Microsoft Word, that electronic boat sailing down a river of meticulously typed papers, switching and bending at the will of the user was, I’m convinced, created to further generate a distance between those who can and those who choose not to. I fall into the latter camp, standing proud against the wave of bureaucratisation that has seeped into the working mores of our proud nation, happy to get my hands dirty as a yardstick of proof of my commitment to the workers’ cause.
You will not see me succumbing to that subtle pressure that encourages the young to learn to type properly in the hope of winning some over-paid position in a behemoth of an organisation with its subsidised canteen and endless Word courses with their brightly inked certificates which resemble some kind of inter-employer career currency.
This currency is promoted as proof of transferrable skills, a sop to the fragile egos of the aforementioned smug characters, reinforcing their petty world view that one cannot live without learning to type or master the mighty Microsoft applications.
But enough of these musings. I am cold and wet and the delivery truck is nowhere to be seen. Hunger gnaws at my gut and I’m 17p short of the cost of a cheese sandwich at the supermarket next door.
In the rising wind a soggy Metro flaps open against my ankles, an advert for typing courses at Pitman Training shining out at me. Is someone trying to tell me something? No, I must resist. But I guess a phone call wouldn’t hurt.
Published by Holborn Training.
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