In 7th grade, I was awarded the coveted “Typing Award.” That's right, I graduated summa cum laude from my 7th grade typing class. I know kids who would take back a million spitballs for what I achieved.

Not coincidentally, this happened around the time that I became obsessed with typing. I remember using an ancient word-processing program called Professional Write on our home computer to type stuff out. Problem was, there wasn't really enough stuff for me to type. You know how when you're a kid, you would fantasize about having a bunch of files and receipts and documents and important paperwork and cash register type stuff to do? That was how I felt about typing. So I decided the best thing to do would be to start typing straight out of the encyclopedia. That would be pretty important.

It was mad. I typed for hours on end until the keys clicked along rapidly with a steady, uninterrupted pace. Every keystroke felt more important than the previous one, especially if I could crank out a sentence as fast as I could read it. I didn't know what I was typing and I didn't care. I could have documented the entire feminist movement on three hard drives without gaining an ounce of respect for women.

But my hard work paid off when Ms. Thomas, the crazy Jamaican teacher everyone hated, decided I was her best student ever. But not only for typing ability. No no. Our 7th grade typing class (probably more advanced than yours), consisted of learning professional skills as well. We wrote sample cover letters, resumes, and thank-you notes, and we even had a mock interview for our fake job with a REAL employer at the end of the year. Apparently, I drafted a cover letter so great, it was still being used 3 years later when my sister went through the same class.

And that brings me to my latest “nostalgic find,” from some box my mom dug up under my old house: a computer print out of mine, complete with perforation marks around the edges (remember how you used to have to tear printer sheets apart) from October 25, 1993. It appears to be a cover letter I wrote when I was 12 years old, exactly the time I would have been in 7th grade.

So for the first time in years, I will now type this long passage from paper to computer…just like the old days.

October 25, 1993

Dear Elmer,

I am looking forward to the time when I can become a geneticist. It is an intriguing employment that I would like to further pursue. It is a growing job area considering the extent to which the public is needing cures for diseases and needs for better products. My interest grew in this field because it has not been explored thoroughly, leaving many discoveries open to the innovative mind. I am fully ready for the extra hours it will take to research and experiment with different recombinant DNA or other tasks.

I will try to uncover the college that will provide me with the best education. Duke University in North Carolina is a fine school that I would regard with high respect. To find the best college for my needs I will wait until it is time to think seriously and use college reference books to help me.

Court Sullivan

I don't know if this was the same cover letter that sealed the deal on my typing victory, but I do know that it finally found it's way to Elmer, head of the Human Genome Project. Beginning tomorrow, I will be leaving my post as editor of PIC, and I will begin mapping regions of the brain you will never understand. Soon, I will secretly recombinate my own DNA with that of Google robots and pieces of Einstein's and David Cross's right ventromedial prefrontal cortexes, thereby giving me THE ULTIMATE SARCASTIC SUPERINTELLIGENCE.

If only Ms. Thomas could see what a successful geneticist I've become.