Sunday, April 25

The Office Outfit

Can you imagine owning your own "office outfit?" I'm not talking about a nice tweed suit with Oxfords and a tasteful silk tie. I'm talking about this little thing: brown cardboard box and electric blue lid containing an entire set of stamps for making your own customizable rubber stamp. Multiples of each letter, upper and lower case, stored in a nice wooden rack, waiting to be arrayed in a wide, thin handle for printing.

What would you use it for? When would you use this thing instead of a typewriter? When would it be more economical to assemble your own line or two of typeset rather than contacting a professional printer?

I suppose it would be handy to confirm receipt of certain documents, though it doesn't strike me as the pinnacle of convenience to throw "Received by" into a rack and stamp it out for a few pages, then replace all the letters--and I'd put them back in alphabetical order, though some people would just put them back into storage and call it done.

It would also be handy for printing on unconventional surfaces, like, a label on a bottle or anything else that couldn't easily be fed into a typewriter. It could be handier to print on a porous surface rather than feed a sheet of labels into a typewriter or something, I suppose.

This was an artifact of my grandparents', when I went to visit grandpa's house in Idaho (grandma has been deceased for several years). In my last trip two years ago, it was very important for me to go through their office supplies and see what were the accoutrement of their day, what they found necessary or handy to have around. My grandmother was a high school teacher and my grandfather dealt in real estate, and they must've done some considerable business at home, based on two rooms that have been sequestered for an office and storage for office supplies.

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