Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Are you there Fonts? It's me, The Mayor

Bonjour moppets! It's that time again, where we pull up a chair to the fire, put on our winter socks, snuggle up with a mug of hot vodka, and talk type. This week I have decided to touch on a subject that many of you are uncomfortable discussing. Now would be the time to send the kids to bed. Those of you with weak stomachs might want to turn away from the computer. Persons with heart issues or a history of stroke should consult their doctor before proceeding with the following article.

Are we good? Okay, this week we're talking about the design of, the reason for, and the horror that is Oh dear, I seem to have vomited a little in my mouth. Which conveniently brings me to my next thought; why is it that Comic Sans causes us to much distress? I mean, it's only a typeface. It could be so much more repulsive, like popular pedestrian face Curlz (I abhor Curlz). But even Curlz doesn't have a website dedicated to how terrible it is.

That still doesn't explain why Comic Sans is considered one of the most repugnant faces. Since I am not an expert (clearly) I asked a few Graphic Designer friends; it turns out they dislike it for more reasons than simply it's hideous.

- It is overused. Now, you and I know that using Comic Sans says many things. I have no taste, for example, or I'm going blind. But to your average Joe Sixpack or Jane Box-of-Wine, Comic Sans says I need to make a price list for my small business/daycare/bar & grill with wacky crap on the walls, and I'm not going to use something boring like Times New Roman, gosh darn it!

- It isn't entirely readable. Well, that's one I'm going to call Shenanigans on. I think that setting an entire book in Comic Sans is a little much, but how difficult is it to read Comic Sans was forged in the bowels of Hell? Exactly.

- It is used in highly inappropriate ways. Wow, this is very true; there has been many a time I have received a job application or parole hearing notice set in Comic Sans, and it just seems so declasse. How many times have you seen this

or sadly, this

Oooh! The chills I get! So where do we go with it? We know that Graphic Designers don't use Comic Sans, and that it's the average idiot who keeps Comic Sans alive. Obviously we can't outright ban it; so how do you discourage people from using it? Are you fighting the losing fight?

I wish I had an answer, but I clearly don't. I mean, I still don't know much about anything (I've only been here for about a month. I know, I should start reading Robert Bringhurst. I can't promise I'll try, but I'll try to try). So what do you have to say about Comic Sans? You could leave your thoughts in the comments or you can send me an email and school me on Comic Sans and all things crappy. Send your thoughts to mayor.villatype@gmail.com. I'll consider it your Festivus present to me!

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