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Free thoughts

by | Apr 29, 2022 | free thoughts | 12 comments

Take two pretty Underwood Champions from the 1930s, some colored cards …
… a little ingenuity, and some guts. Mix and you get Free Thoughts — a pop-up project at Xavier University today. A colleague in the philosophy department and I sat outside the main classroom building and wrote reflections on any topics proposed by a steady stream of students and faculty.

I did much the same three years ago with another colleague. What a long three years it’s been! Nobody had heard of Covid-19 then. Today, I wore a mask because I was recently exposed to the virus (later I tested negative).

Before we ventured out, we tried some typing in my office, picking prompts randomly from books. This was my favorite effort:
Here are some thoughts I typed for the public: 

(Should have been “bound for a destination unbounded”!)

And here are some of my friend’s thoughts. (You’ll notice duplicate themes. People offered a topic and we both wrote about it.)

We agreed: this was a great experience that we will repeat!

 

12 Comments

  1. typewriter.works

    jackass and odysseus and jesus and flames of goodness. fanstastic!

    Reply
  2. Ted

    The best thoughts are Free thoughts :D

    Reply
  3. Bill G

    Once a thought is captured in print, is it actually still considered a thought at that point?

    Reply
  4. Michael Höhne

    What a treat this morning! Thank you. Now let us readers write down these prompts, take them up a week or so later, and see how free our own thoughts are.

    Reply
  5. Richard P

    Great idea. I'd like to see what you come up with!

    Reply
  6. Bill M

    Beautiful typewriters. Great thoughts put to words. Great idea using colored paper.

    Reply
  7. RobertG

    How grand! (and brave too, i think)
    Works well with a typewriter – only writing and no backtracking :-)

    (Btw – isn't it amazing how few coloured Champions there are – given that they didn't cost any more than a regular black one.)

    Reply
  8. Anonymous

    I just want to say how impressed I am with your, dare I say, poetry. It is sublime. Thank you doing this and showing the results.

    Reply
  9. Mei Travis

    Beautiful machines! Nice poetry! Thanks as always for sharing your typewriter adventures.

    Reply
  10. rino breebaart

    Such a novel idea. Free and spirited… and poetic too. I'd be very impressed if a philosophy professor made themself so creatively available on campus. Hats off.

    Reply
  11. Chris Link

    Wow! You both came up with some amazing poetry when put on the spot! So talented!

    Reply

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