loss of control

Nobody warned me.

I can’t believe it…but nobody said a damned thing to me about the danger of typography addiction. There I was, innocently trying to create a cover design for an e-book. A babe in the woods, that’s what I was. A babe in the fucking woods. “Go download some fonts,” they said. “Try a little League Gothic. Have a taste of some Trajan. Go ahead, it’ll be okay.”

Do you know how many typefaces are out there? More than Carl Sagan could count. Do you know how many of them I downloaded? ALL OF THEM. I don’t know serif from Shinola, but I’ve probably got a typeface by that name. Right now I seem to be drawn to something called Astonished. Why? I have no fucking clue. I think because it looks like it was designed by somebody trying to scratch his way out of an abandoned refrigerator.

I’m exaggerating slightly. In truth, I’ve always been attracted by the idea of typography. I like the theory behind it. I’ve just never had to deal with the reality of it  I suspect that after a few days I’ll develop some sense of discretion, of aesthetic discernment, some sideways control over my indiscriminate font-bingeing.

But right now, I’m just another sailor on shore leave, looking for a gypsy good time.


I need to mow the brother’s lawn.

Despite not taking any nourishment or liquids for the last three or four days, despite blood still being suctioned from his stomach, Jesse Eugene’s body continues to remain alive. We keep thinking that this must be his last day–and yet each day his body carries on.

The world doesn’t stop, of course, just because my brother is very slowly dying. It doesn’t even slow down. And yet all the little mundane chores and errands that take up so much time every week seem weirdly out of place. Yesterday I went with my oldest brother, Roger Lee, to replenish his supply of his favorite tea. We had to visit three or four shops before we could find one that carried the tea. At one point we were near a big box sporting goods store, so we stopped and went in. We looked at kayaks, we looked at golf equipment–and for a short time we stopped thinking about Jesse Eugene slowly dying in the hospice.

So this morning, instead of heading off to the hospice, I’ll be cranking up the brother’s aging lawn mower and making his lawn presentable to the neighbors. When I get to the hospice later, I’ll tell him about it. It won’t matter to him. It doesn’t really matter to me. The neighbors might appreciate it.

It’s just another of those many things that have to be done. All over the world, the lawns of dying people are being mowed.

update: The lawn is mowed. I can’t say it was fun, but it was a nice distraction. I’ve decided to do a yard chore every day until the brother checks out. Tomorrow I’ll power up his weed-eater and clear out this mess:

What I like about yard work is that there’s a clear, visible indication of how much work you’ve done. It’s oddly satisfying when you finish.