by Michelle Farnsworth
Technology has made us greedy, impatient, and spoiled. Long gone are the days of waiting for film to be developed, a cup of coffee brewed drip by drop into a pot, or typing and printing a document.
Now, these are considered “retro” or “vintage.” When I was growing up they were all we had. No digital cameras. No K-Cups to pop into a Keurig for instant gratification, and certainly no computers to type up a story for Inspired Woman magazine.
My super official, scientific Facebook research on these topics led me to a conclusion: everything old is once again cool, and trending.
Anyone that knows me can testify to my love of a good photo, selfie, or documenting an event. My favorite response to the naysayers is always, ”I come by it honestly.” My mother, Donna Hardt, is a television news photographer for KFYR-TV in Bismarck. I grew up in the newsroom and going on assignments with her. I look at the world through a different lens.
Everything is a potential story. Everything is worthy of photographing. And sharing is caring. Smartphone technology is a way of life for me. I believe my iPhone is attached to my wrist.
But last year at this time, I decided to delve back into my childhood and purchase the latest version of the Polaroid camera. They are more compact. The film is one-step; pop it into the camera and you’re ready to roll.
I even took the camera on a vacation to Mexico and was taking Polaroids to place into my tiny photo album. It was also entertaining to take Polaroids of locals and hand them a photograph of themselves.
And for the selfie enthusiast, a Polaroid camera is not ideal, but can be mastered. (See photo. Sorry Frankie.)
DRIP COFFEE MAKERS
Many people don’t like a Keurig K-Cup for their morning jolt of java. In fact, they prefer an excellent coffee bean, ground to perfection, and brewed just like their grandpa liked it.
“I use a drip coffee maker because it’s my favorite way to enjoy an entire pot of coffee,” says Jenn Bailey of Bismarck. ”There is nothing better than waking up to the smell of freshly made coffee in the morning.”
Another fan of the old ways of brewing coffee, Erika White, says, ”I switched back from a Keurig because K-Cups are expensive, filters are better for the environment than K-Cups, and I can drink an entire pot if I want.”
”My husband is too cheap to have anything else. Put that in your article, Michelle,” says Annie Carlson. (Well, Annie, I just did.)
After over 40 comments, shared photos and experiences, I’m wondering if I should also revert back to the good ol’ days. I’m not gonna lie, I am a sucker for marketing, and I also enjoy my cute K-Cup holder, but I digress.
I have always loved a good typewriter. I never minded typing classes in junior high and high school. I was competitive and always wanted to type the most words per minute.
I remember the humming of the electric typewriters: the clacking and tapping on the keyboards in a room full of inexperienced students; stopping to use Wite-Out and then letting it dry before typing over the mistake.
But an old typewriter is more than a relic or a nod to the past. I think it is a handsome piece of home decor. Collectors line shelves with coveted models. And many people love to still compose on an old typewriter. Pounding each key is a workout. After a sentence, your fingers ache. It takes work to type an entire story, let alone an entire book—probably why I quickly wimped out after only typing three words on my old machine.
Local author, Josie Blaine’s typewriter is more than a typewriter. Sentimental value and a personal story makes it a symbol of unending friendship.
“It’s completely functional. I can use it to type special notes to my loved ones,” says Josie.
I like to consider the trend of using old as new more of a challenge to step away from digital and step back in time. I may just resort to handing out Polaroids and sending typed letters, while drinking a cup of freshly brewed coffee.
Michelle Farnsworth is a local writer and owner of her own Younique Makeup and Skincare business. Two humans, one fur baby, and her husband, Richard, occupy her free time.