So I’m in a spurt of Tumblr productivity (Lots of posting but not doing useful stuff). I’ve had this written on a post it on my desktop for MONTHS so now seems as good a time as any.
There’s an episode of American Dad where someone dies and no one can remember who he was and so the person reading the eulogy is just listing information off his driving licence. Which made me think, if you were in the same situation (as the dead person) and someone read off information from your facebook profile instead, what would it say about you? Lets have a look at mine:
- Who could possibly forget his views on politics: “The definition of politics: Poly meaning many and Tics meaning annoying little blood sucking insects”
- His stout political views of Dawkinism…
- His love of quoting random things which don’t seem to make sense to anyone but him and possibly a select few.
- His constant amusement by internet memes.
- The love of the usual books, films, and music that everyone seems to have generically liked.
- Overarching, of course, his love of some font or other, maybe that’s the one they use on the Tube, anyone know what that’s actually called?
It really doesn’t say much about me. I think I’d prefer my eulogy to be one word shouted by my best mate: “PAAAAAARRRRRRTAAAAAAYYYYY!”
The Importance Of Beauty In Writing
I would like, if I may,
to take you on a strange journey to quote to you from a report by Edward Johnston from the 12th of September 1906:
While it is convenient to regard legibility as of first importance, beauty and character are perhaps in actual practice more sought after, and, for example, applicants letters - which are generally readable enough - are rejected for lack of them. Beauty & Character of a sort however are to be found in all simple handwriting but not as they ought to be in modern copy books.
In other words, he is saying that you can tell a lot about a person from their handwriting. Johnston was a man regarded by many as the father of modern calligraphy and reviver of the art of modern penmanship and lettering. He generally hated thing which were mass produced (Ironic, seeing as he is best remembered for his Underground typeface and Roundel symbol on the London Underground.) but preferred things which were characteristic of their creator.
This quote is from a report for the London County Council on Pens and Copy Books then in use for Children learning to write.
But it began me thinking, how much of your own character do you miss out on giving by typing up and printing an application letter for a job? Or, perhaps more crucially, in a personal email? Would the internet have evolved in the same way if people had to use their own handwriting online?
I don’t pay much attention to my handwriting any more. I used to, when I would need to write every day for classes, but these days even my lecture notes can be typed.
So, if I’m applying for a job, I may grab an ink pen, practice a little, and write up a letter that shows off just who I am, who I want to be. Maybe it’ll be different enough to work. Maybe.