The odds were 25 to 1 against him, since he was the only man in a roomful of 26 typists. But when the clicking and clacking had stopped, Mike Bishop had won -- for the second year in a row.
Mike delivered his latest death blow to sexual stereotyping last Saturday. He proved in a big way that women are not the only humans who can type accurately and quickly. In an annual contest sponsored by the Katharine Gibbs School of Rockville, Mike walked away with the blue ribbon by hammering out 540 words in five minutes. Which is not exactly sleepwalking.
The cause, same as last year, was Children's Hospital. Mike and his fellow contestants each rounded up dozens of precontest pledges. They totalled $2,026.17 -- which may be how many words Mike Bishop types per minute at next year's contest. Don't bet against it.
Mike is a commercial photographer who serves part time as a staff sergeant in the D.C. Air National Guard. He took part in Saturday's contest wearing Air Force blues. Was that the secret of his success?
"No," he said, "it's the Selectric I have at home. I type letters to all my girlfriends on it. And I have so-o-o-o-o many girlfriends . . . ."
Hats off to Mike, his many girlfriends and all the gang at Katie Gibbs. As always, this contribution to Children's was one of the noisiest to assemble -- and one of the most satisfying to collect.