Archive for January, 2007

Are all typographers pretentious?

Wednesday, January 31st, 2007

Spotted over in the comments on Design Observer:

“If you use a typeface without knowing who designed it, it is like sleeping with someone and not knowing their name.” (Robert Bringhurst)

Blimey – that could well be the most pretentious piece of crap I’ve ever heard. Who gives a flying fuck who designed a typeface? Get over yourself…

Someone’s got to say it: typography is not the be all and end all. It is not the secret to the mystery of life. It will not save the starving and poor.

No one ever died from a bit of bad kerning or over-zealous leading.

It’s. Just. Type.

Socks and slugs: proof that creationism is false

Saturday, January 27th, 2007

For me the whole creationism v evolution debate comes to a shuddering halt when I consider two things: socks and slugs. For me they are proof that evolution is the end of the story.

Let’s take slugs. The only way that slugs could be said to be the result of a creator is if you suppose for a minute that the creator also had a child bugging him or her at the time. Let’s face it, slugs are useless ugly little buggers that scare the bejeezus out of me (I don’t know why, I’m just a wimp when it comes to slimy things that sit there and do nothing).

If creationism were a kitchen, then slugs are the equivalent of the things that kids make when their parents finally give in to their nagging and give them a bit of pastry to mess about with. If you’re a parent you may have experienced this (I’m not so I haven’t) but surely everyone who’s ever been a kid knows what I’m saying. You’re watching someone making jam tarts or a steak pie or something and you nag and nag until you get given a bit of pastry and some jam and what do you make? That’s right: a big lump of pastry with some jam in the middle. And you insist it gets baked along with the rest of the stuff and, after it comes out of the oven and is cool enough (or not, as my scalded tongue reminds me) you insist on eating it or – worse – making your mum or dad eat it.

This is what I think slugs are. The creator was busy in the creative kitchen making all the lovely birds and the flowers and making the odd mistake (sharks, spiders, Republicans etc) because Junior was nagging to be allowed to play and make something too. And when given some material, what did Junior do? Rolled it in to a sausage, filled it with goo, and created the Slug, then insisted it was baked and let loose on the world.

Now I don’t buy that. So clearly, the slug must be a product of evolution because only a stupid and slow process could come up with something so stupid and slow.

So where do socks come in to it?
Well I’ve just spent 20 minutes searching my drawers for a pair of socks that match and, despite my little flashes of genius (‘I know, I’ll buy only socks that have different coloured stripes on the top so I can identify them!’, ‘I know, I’ll only buy black socks so it doesn’t matter!’) I couldn’t. So here I am wearing odd socks, both black but slightly different shades of black, and both slightly different thicknesses so even if no one else notices they’re odd, I certainly do.
You see, if we were the result of an all knowing creator, he or she would not have created us with body parts that needed covering and protecting by two different things. He or she would not have set us up for an existence where, over the course of a week, the best part of two hours would be wasted fumbling about in a drawer for nothing more substantial than a couple of tubes of wool or cotton.
Either he or she would have given us hooves or caterpillar tracks. Or, indeed, not bothered with legs of any sort and made us like… er, slugs.

And so there’s an end to it. Creationism or evolution? Socks and slugs prove it: evolution is the answer.

iPhone gets a wag of the finger

Saturday, January 13th, 2007