Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: COMPUTER (05/19/16)
TITLE: An Inspired Invitation
By Elaine Hemingway
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“What you should consider,” said my father thoughtfully, “Is to become a Comptometer Operator. I think that is the way to go for the future.”
Needless to say, I didn’t listen. I was a teenager, on the threshold of the big adventure of life, leaving school behind me and venturing on the money-earning, employment highway. I wanted a job that would not tie me to a desk.
And now a screen leers at me, challenging me to change its face. It’s like a huge, malevolent creature from outer space wanting to bring knowledge of the hitherto unknown and weave it into my untidy life. Are men from Mars green? No they are the dark purple of fantasy, the colour of deadly nightshade, with the same attributes; poisonous but mysteriously beautiful. Men from my mythical Mars want to grow petals of promise in my garden of memories. They need the water of inspiration and the fertiliser of my fanciful dreams. They want to be nurtured into realism and take over my days and nights so that I can be released from boredom into a fictional romance of people, created to be perfect for the roles I want them to play. They will be uniquely mine as I strive to build stories around them, make them inhabit the real world and give them situations to investigate, escape from or build on.
I bought a typewriter when I was a teenager – saved my pocket money, and learnt how to finger-walk through its keys. It was like learning to play the piano and just as confusing. There was no time or money to spend on lessons so I built an erratic speed using three or four , sometimes five fingers and as the years passed I graduated through portables to an electric model, bought from the office I then worked in as a Jill of all trades. It was a massive affair so my husband had to give me a room in which to house it. It looked really good and professional amongst all my books, and I became quite proficient at recycling ribbons and sticking correctional tape all over the printed pages – duplicates, triplicates, ever fading and smudging with the purple carbons happily slithering about like slugs in my vegetable patch. Oh yes, even a vegetable patch was part of the procrastination needed in order to prevent the completion of another “Gone With the Wind.”
If Margaret Mitchell could do it, with note books and a typewriter, why couldn’t I?
One of the many jobs on my CV taught me some of the benefits of a computer, and happily I wiled away my lunch hours as I experimented and learnt new techniques. Of course, most were improved upon, technologically evolved I suppose I should say, before I had mastered the art of the first ones with the green characters on a storm coloured screen. Stashed away in boxes are some of my earlier attempts at entering the writer’s world...
No computer can compete with the knowledge that my Father is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, all powerful, and knows me better than I know myself. I don’t have to Google Him to find out where He wants me, and what He wants me to do, or even how I should do it. All is available through the power of prayer and the reading of His Word. He knows the plans He has for me, plans to prosper, not to harm; plans to give me hope and a future. He has guided and led me through the years. I never did become a comptometer operator, and my computer is a glorified typewriter, used to invite others to, “Come; glorify the Lord with me. Let us exalt His Name together.”
Jeremiah 29:11; Psalm 34:3
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