Font Fun and Phobia

I adore words.  I love letters.

However, it had never occurred to me that someone could recoil from a font.

Last fall I got lost (as usual) while returning from an early morning climb, and found myself in a town I’d never seen before.

My passenger suddenly shrank back, surveying the stretch of highway with distaste.

“What’s wrong?”

“It’s . . . . It’s Papyrus.”   Grimly intoned.

“That’s an odd name for a town.”

“No, it’s Papyrus.  The font.”

Sure enough, for a few miles every sign seemed to be in a font that just didn’t seem right.   No Times New Roman or Courier in sight.  The Papyrus script was thin, insubstantial, and seemed to waver.  It was too unassertive a font for commercial invitations.  Too equivocal to announce government business.

I began to feel it, too: a vague disquiet, an inclination to avert my eyes from the lettering.

And then it passed: we left the town and I could see gleaming reflective white capital lettering on green highway signs ahead.

In a sturdy, comforting sans-serif.


Author: Stephanie

In her spare time, Stephanie works full-time, and then some, as an attorney. She has published articles and delivered talks in arcane fields like forensic evidentiary issues, jury instructions, and expert scientific witness preparation. She attended law school on the banks lso is an adjunct professor at a law school near the banks of the Charles River and loves that dirty water, as she will always think of Boston as her home. You are welcome to take a look at her Facebook author page, or follow @SMartinGlennon on Twitter and @schnitzelpond on Instagram. Bonus points for anyone who understands the Instagram handle. All content on this blog, unless otherwise attributed, is (c) 2012-2021 by Stephanie M. Glennon and should not be reproduced (in any form other than re-blogging in accordance with the wee Wordpress buttons at the bottom of each post) without the express permission of the domain holder.

7 thoughts on “Font Fun and Phobia”

  1. I know what you’re talking about. In fact, in my reader, just above your post, is a post that is in a bold red print. It’s painful to look at. I couldn’t read beyond the first paragraph. Now, excuse me, I have to go look up Papyrus. 🙂

  2. Very creative interpretation of this week’s theme. I particularly liked the autographs and signatures on the guitars. That is a font style almost none of us can replicate 🙂

  3. I always feel a bit betrayed when my browser host or homepage people decide to change a format on me. I open up the page expecting the familiar and then….I shudder. New fonts are often part of that.

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