Manic Monday


There is something about this Monday that really has a smile on my face. It might be the weather. It might be the tremendous news I had last week (top secret but it’s got me beaming!). It might be the amazing Season Finale for Mad Men.

It might be this website, that never fails to make me smile and want to do something random and kind and a little weird for other people.  Do you ever send E Cards? Do they normally make you groan and roll your eyes? Well these are hilarious, and a great way to tell someone in a really inappropriate way that you’re thinking of them.

Anyway, I’ve made a discovery of my new favorite coffee shop on Hawthorne. Oui Press has everything I like- bold typography in the decor, french and delicious pastries, free wifi and good coffee. Look how cute it is:

Anyway, here are some head-scratchers I found this week on the internet. Happy Monday!

  • Nubby Twiglet reads this book, and now I want to, also. Great review.
  • How to be a Beginner– good advice from Miss Modish and pretty pivotal in my life right now!
  • What is it about McSweeney’s that always seems to speak directly to me? This piece entitled “The Ultimate Guide to Writing Better Than You Normally Do.” is pretty hilarious in how spot-on it is.
  • I’ve been thinking a lot lately about taking banjo lessons at the lovely Artichoke Music on Hawthorne in preparation for the amazingness that will be this year’s Pickathon. Doesn’t it seem like some people have a musical gift, and other people have a song inside them they don’t know how to start- or in my case are too tone deaf to articulate?
  • My old-timey creative streak is  itching to try out this tutorial for turning a photo into an engraving in Photoshop. Maybe this week!

Have an excellent start to a sunny week!

Migraine and Poetry

It used to be that I equated poetry with a migraine; in my mind poetry was self-indulgent, something that is too abstract or too self-important. While I believe this holds true in a lot of poetry, I’ve since come to find a few poets that I enjoy reading, and I’ve even begun to play with the form myself. This is a poem I wrote last year, but revised today when I realized that ultimately I’ve been associating this fruit with my migraines, something I’ve suffered from since childhood.

Sharing it here is a bit of a risk, but I trust you all to be gentle with me! This poem is in the form of a pantoum, in which the second and fourth lines of each stanza are repeated as the first and third lines of the next.

Tiny scarlet capsules, self-contained
in little chambers, apart.
I pick until my fingers are stained,
the ruby red juices start.

In little chambers apart,
everything is in its place.
The ruby-red juices start,
my mind begins to race.

Everything in its place
-but something’s still askew.
My mind begins to race,
it must be straightened too.

But something is askew,
my shoulders start to sag.
They must be straightened too,
I wave my white flag.

My shoulders start to sag,
everything must be neat.
I wave my white flag,
my blood picks up the heat.

Everything must be neat-
scratchy thoughts are in my head.
My blood picks up the heat,
my skull is raw, rough, red.

Scratchy thoughts run through my head
I pick, my fingers are stained.
My hands are raw, rough, red,
tiny scarlet capsules, self-contained.

Image thanks to Tafari on flickr

A Typographic Affair

Hello, my name is Erin and I’m a Typoholic.

Hello, Erin.

In all seriousness, I have a long-standing obsession over typography. Serifs, sans serifs, stroke, ligature, I try to take in all aspects of the lettering. Part of this fascination comes from being a writer and knowing that the way the word looks can often convey just as much meaning as the word itself.

That being said, I tend to collect typefaces. Here’s the pretty piece of typographic eye candy that I’ve become fixated on lately:


I discovered this font while visiting the Portland Street of Dreams in the Pearl. The main thing I really love about this font is the “R” and how it doesn’t quite connect back to the stem. I also love the little serif boots on each letter. It’s light and airy like my much beloved Helvetica, but has the panache of the old western slab serifs.

Taken in the Street of Dreams Hoyt Building

This is how cool I am. Amidst the PDX skyline and beautiful interior design, I take pictures of the wall.

In tribute to my musings on typography, I’ve changed my blog header image to a compilation of photos I took in the Portland area. Each of these images are hand painted (or chiseled) lettering- truly an art form.