A Font Defines Me

Writers are narcissists. Obsessed with themselves and their thoughts. Human beings and the events surrounding them are all material for the writer. Pain and joy are exploited equally.

After much thinking on my company’s time, I have come to an important conclusion, a font defines me.

I write in Comic Sans. That will tell you almost everything you need to know about me. If you can decipher.

I dislike Times New Roman. Dislike is a strong word. Let me say that it does nothing for me. It is bland and normal. When I use Times New Roman, the keys on my laptop feel stiff and the words come out forced. I do not blame it. Normal is necessary. How would we know abnormal if normal did not exist? TNR is straight laced or even better straight. There is nothing fabulous about it. It sticks to the books and is so official.

Gothic just seems unnecessary. So after a right click, the synonyms of gothic are spooky, gloomy, grotesque, creepy, eerie, and melodramatic and by now you get the drift. Who needs the darkness? Gothic creates a mood I am unwilling to wear. I am many things but dark is not one of them. My keys feel heavy and what I write in gothic I cannot relate to.

You know how when it is almost morning and you can hear the cock crow if you live where chickens are. If you don’t, it is like you beginning to hear more vehicles honk and that signal tells you that morning is close. When you crack your eyes open and your room is no longer pitch black, you are beginning to see that morning is winning its fight with the night. Arial font is like that for me. It is the almost but not quite. It is trying a size 16 dress when you are a size 18. You can squeeze into it but you may not be able to zip it. Even if you do fit into it, it is so tight that you can see the definition of the navel. Arial font reminds of Comic Sans because I cannot deny that there is a resemblance. But try as I might to settle with it, I know it is not a perfect fit.

 

Comic Sans does it in a way that I cannot explain but will try. I absolutely love the carefreeness I feel whenever I read or write in Comic Sans. The undertone of humor, lightness and cheekiness personifies me. I clatter away on the keyboard as I can barely keep up with the words that are begging to be expressed in this font specifically. I could go as far as calling it my muse but I won’t. We don’t want to ‘heat up the polity’ (remnants of the vocabulary I acquired in my recent jaunt with writing about the last elections.) But you see what I just did there? You know, the joke about heating up the polity amongst the various things that are in contest to win the coveted prize of being my muse. That is all thanks to Comic Sans.

So, can you tell who I am now? I am slightly off normal with a dash of semi seriousness and a pinch of humour. I am lighthearted and would prance across fields covered with daffodils if I was not ‘heavybodied’ or if I liked nature. I also have some slivers of OCD obviously, who obsesses about fonts and is actually affected by them. I won’t go into how I arrange clothes on a line for which I actually have a template I follow. I won’t go into that. I don’t want anyone to think normal left me a long time ago.

 

Featured image by Eloghosa Osunde, from her contribution to the Crime Issue.

Abiodun Kuforiji Nkwocha

Abiodun Kuforiji Nkwocha is Geologist with a love for art. She is a singer and songwriter (one step out of the bathroom) and a writer. She writes for Sabinews and is Farafina Workshop Alumna. She is married and has two lovely boys.

  • Otieno Owino-Mikwa

    The politics of font. I didn’t fancy comic sans at all at all until in class , learning about typography and shit like that, was told it’s unserious, carefree, not something you want use for serious stuff, apparently why you see it a lot in stuff for kids etc, and the case of this scientist who sent an alert about a very significant breakthrough using comic sans and the entire universe wasn’t convinced it was actually true. Then I realized, well, gut feelings are right. Of course I now know more about serif and san serif, modern and old font, I even know a few typographers and I’ve read that book by Gill, he of Gill sans. But still, comic sans is a no no no.. I do give it up to you for this choice, the subversion inherent in your choice is bold and brave and unique. I love that you can actually explain it in a beautiful essay. Not many of us can. Well, not many of us even think of font. I know that Baskerville is the most ‘honest’. I write mostly in TNR but when I’m copyediting I use calibri, pt 14, zoomed to 120% on my computer. It’s easier on the eye but my wife says I need specs. So I just went on a confessional there. Look what your comic sans did to me. I don’t even normally comment on stories.

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