Couple's love of typewriters leads to Tom Hanks connectionUPDATED 12:00 AM HST Mar 11, 2014Video Transcript
Chances are good you've tickled the keys of a computer today. But when's the last time you used a typewriter? To some, they're only good as boat anchors. But in Eric Hanson's This is Iowa, we find that even in 2014, old manual models still have the power - to unlock some pretty awesome relationships. TO STUMP THE IPHONE GENERATION-- Now... oop. GIVE 'EM A PIECE OF PAPER, A MANUAL KEYBOARD AND ONE INSTRUCTION. Short Laugh. TYPE. I think you have to press it like really hard. TECHNOLOGY' S NO MATCH FOR A 4TH GRADER-- Quick growl. BUT ASK THEM TO POUND OUT A SIMPLE SENTENCE? Maybe this does something. AND YOU'LL BE AMAZED-- There, there's a T. AT HOW A RELIC CAN BE SO CONFUSING-- This is not easy. My fingers already hurt and we wrote two sentences. UNLESS IT'S ALL YOU'VE EVER KNOWN. I don't know what I'd do without my typewriter, you know. 96 YEAR OLD PAUL MORRISON IS A LEGEND AT DRAKE UNIVERSITY-- I've been off the payroll longer than most people are on it. AND EVERY TIME THE ATHLETIC HISTORIAN POUNDS OUT A LETTER, HIS WHOLE DEPARTMENT FEELS IT. Keeping them awake with my typing, so... laugh. YOU'D UNDERSTAND IF A GUY CLOSING IN ON A HUNDRED DIDN'T WANT TO LEARN SOMETHING NEW. Computers are wonderful, but they're not for me. BUT THAT'S NOT WHY HE'S STILL TYPING. TRASH HIS TYPEWRITER AND HE SAYS HIS WORDS WOULDN'T FEEL - AS AUTHENTIC. You've lost that personal touch. You hold that piece of paper and you know that person on the other end of it sat and looked at it and held that piece of paper and it's a very direct way of communicating. WHEN ALEX COONEY AND HIS THEN- GIRLFRIEND WERE LIVING IN DIFFERENT CITIES - EMAILS JUST WEREN'T CUTTING IT. We had thousands of electronic messages but nothing - we never printed any of them out or hold them other than on a phone. SO FOR VALENTINE'S DAY, HE SPLURGED-- This was mine and he had a matching one. ON A COUPLE CLASSIC REMINGTONS. BY THE TIME THEY SAID 'I DO', HILLARI AND ALEX HAD A STACK OF KEEPSAKES YOU CAN'T GET BY TEXTING. I just love it. I like the sound. I like the way it shakes the table when I type. THESE DAYS RIBBONS ARE HARD TO FIND, BUT TYPEWRITER JUNKIES AREN'T - LIKE ACTOR TOM HANKS-- Now you're crying like a goo-goo gaga baby. WHOSE LOVE RUNS SO DEEP, HE'S EVEN SHOT SILLY YOUTUBE CLIPS WITH HIS COLLECTION AROUND THE WORLD. A QUIRKINESS THE COONEYS LOVED. I thought, 'Well, I'll send him a Christmas card and maybe he'll think it's funny. TYPEWRITTEN, OF COURSE. NOT THREE WEEKS AFTER SHE SENT IT, ALEX WENT TO THE MAILBOX-- He said, 'Uh, Hillari, you've got mail!' Laugh. AND STARTED READING. Dear Hillari Cooney. First, this letter is being composed on one of my Hermes 3000 typewriters. RIDDLED WITH TYPOS, THE MEGA-STAR EXPLAINED HOW HE NEVER REACHED INTO HIS MAIL BIN AND PULLS OUT A RANDOM LETTER, UNTIL JUST THEN. Voila. It was your letter and Christmas card. And well, lucky me. CAN'T YOU HEAR TOM HANKS SAYING THAT? FOR A FULL PAGE, HE GUSHED ABOUT THE PERSONALITY THAT ARRIVES WITH A TYPED LETTER-- No one throws away a letter from the mailbox. And each typewritten missive is an individual work of art. AND SIGNED IT-- Thanks for writing and happy 2014. All good things, Tom Hanks. It's totally classy in a way you don't hear about. MAKE NO MISTAKE, THEY WILL ALWAYS CHERISH THE HAND-TYPED NOTE FROM FORREST GUMP'S TYPEWRITER. But the stack of letters that I have back and forth from Alex, those are more valuable to me. BECAUSE BOTH ARE WORKS OF ART, BUT THE NOTES THAT STARTED THEIR STORY ARE STILL BEING POUNDED OUT. ERIC HANSON, KCCI 8 NEWS, IOWA'S NEWS LEADER. For those who are wondering - that 'typewriter romeo' who bought his future wife a typewriter? That's my boy - who also reminded Eric that there's no "one" or exclamation point on the really old manuals. For the number one, you use a lower case 'L' and for an exclamation point, type a period, then backspace and an apostrophe.