Sunday, May 04, 2008

Disturbing Evidence That My Son Is A Changeling

R. is finishing up his first-ever term paper this weekend, on Scotland. Standard operating procedure is for one's parents to type up this paper, which I find irksome but ultimately not worth fighting. "Double-spaced, Times New Roman 12 point," R. specified as he handed me his final draft. "Ah, so teachers have finally caught on to that whole situation," I said. I told him with what great genius we used to employ font size in the dark early days of word processing, and that I once used a ten-page Times 12 paper to calculate conversion factors, which I then wrote on an index card affixed to my carrel: Palatino 1.4, New Century Schoolbook 1.6, Courier 1.8.

"I think I'd rather just do the work," he observed.


Jay said...

And before the days of word-processing, when we used (gasp) typewriters, we used to futz with the spacing and margins to turn a 2-page paper into a 3-page paper. I remember one afternoon when 4 or 5 of us collaborated on such a project for one member of the group. It took several hours of calculations and retyping (wasn't my paper, I hasten to add).

Allison Slater Tate said...

Aww, I would rather just do the work when the subject is Scotland my own self. But that Courier sure came in handy when I was writing a 5-pager on a book I hadn't read and I had a hangover. Ah, youth.

Mary P Jones (MPJ) said...

Oh, that's awesome! I just wrote everything in Courier. With 1.5" margins. And found really wordy ways to say things.