I ran my first race of 2018 today. It was the “Run for Hope” event to raise funds for cancer research. It was my 2nd time running this race but in the first one in 2016, I didn’t even know what running pace means, much less about running form. All I knew then was that it was a charity event that I put one leg in front of the other. Today felt vastly different. I ran well, keeping up with the 7:00 min/km pacers during the entire 10km. It was meant as a relaxing training run today, enjoying the scenery, the crowd and having Adrian running with me. It was what I call a happy run where the gun/net time didn’t matter. It felt really good to know that the run was to raise funds and at the end of the race, there is no medal.
I learned about this 106 year old French man, Robert Marchand, today. He’s fit a a fiddle and still cycles 10-20km per day on his stationery bicycle. He credited his outstanding physical form to plenty of exercises, loads of fruits and vegetables, not too much coffee and very little alcohol. These are all my struggles! I drink 2-3 units of alcohol a week and 1-2 cups of coffee a day! But if I can change up my diet and keep up with my exercises, I can lead a healthy and positive life – why not! I am very inspired and will need to take baby steps to change my diet.
Adrian and I jumped into the jacuzzi today after the run to soak up our tight muscles. It felt really good. Going to the jacuzzi always feels like play and puts a smile on my face. I need to do it more often.
The Running Typist
Finished 10K at “Run for Hope”, Singapore, 21 Jan 2018
I ran for my mom – she fought bravely till the end, Singapore, 21 Jan 2018
Source: Straits Times, 21 Jan 2018
Blog Post 1 | 7 Jan 2018, Singapore
I am typing this letter on my red Olivetti Valentine typewriter, listening to Nina Simone over Apple Music. I first saw this typewritere model at the MOMA in NYC in 2010 (or was it 2011?). The fire engine red and design captivated me. This typewriter was designed by Olivetti in collaboration with Perry King and entered production in 1969. However, it did not achieve commercial success due to its price and quality. For me, this typewriter is easy to use, is portable and reminds me to be creative. It is not my first typewriter though. My first was a Remington Rand No. 5 which I love. It was a very distinguished art deco era piece and was made in 1939, the year my mom was born. Unfortunately, it rusted quickly in tropical Singapore and particularly since I live near the sea.
Typing on a manual typewriter does wonders for me. It slows me down tremendously and helps me process my thoughts. Unlike typing on a computer keyboard or on the phone, one needs to type “XXXXX” (as I did earlier) over typo errors. Re-typing paragraphs of badly formulated sentences or missing thoughts also cost time, paper and energy.
Recently, I sent two close friends (in London and Paris) letters for Christmas. They were utterly thrilled to receive the letters. I was candid about my life and also threw in some laughs so that the letters are not that serious in tone. I always make sure I handwrite my name at the end so that they know the letter was from me. I learned about that from something I read about letters sent during the first World War. The recipient would know that that the letter’s sender was still alive.
So why “The Running Typist”? The obvious is because I run and I type on manual typewriters. When I was thinking of the nickname, I got the inspiration from a pub I saw in London called “The Thirsty Bear”. It left a deep impression in me as I thought it was funny, appropriate and memorable. Such creative business names are uncommon in Singapore (where I am from and now live in). However, that is changing as we see millennials start new businesses with the most creative names.
If there is any typist (on manual typewriters) out there, please feel free to reach out to me. Or if you are a female and ardent about running, I’ll love to hear from you too.
The Running Typist
Cape Leeuwin, Australia, 26 Dec 2017