The Last Repairman

Art Skill, Vancouver’s 84 year old typewriter technician

Suffice to say…its part skill, part art.

There could be no better name for an esteemed typewriter repairman, especially when there are so little of those left. Art Skill, 84, of Vancouver, B.C., has no shortage of work. Being the only master of his trade left in town, he has such a constant demand for repairs that he “can’t retire”, as John Mackie of the Vancouver Sun reported Wednesday.

Not only does this reinforce the value of detail-oriented mechanical skills, but it suggests that nostalgia, as much as necessity, keeps the devices alive and in circulation. One can’t help but see parallels to electric motor repair.

Skill has headed Polson’s Office Products since 1963. Although he’s now down to four employees (including his wife) he hasn’t lost his touch.

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