Christmas In March!


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If you live in NYC, one look outside the window this week and you’d think it was December. Last weekend brought us our second “storm of the century” this winter. Classes were canceled. Employers declared it a Snow Day, named after the long-forgotten turn of the century film starring Chris Elliot, Chevy Chase, and to a lesser extent, Iggy Pop.

For me, the snow day wasn’t quite the celebration it was for everyone else. I had an appointment with my amazing tax lady whose offices are in a lost section of Brooklyn that I suspect hasn’t changed much since the Reagan years. Not only did I have to leave the apartment, something I try to do once every month, but my plan to bike there was pretty much derailed (you know how long I been sitting on that pun!). At any rate, the appointment went well and it looks like I don’t owe that drunken sailor of an uncle too much this year. Looks like I’ll be getting some thing back too. Schwing!

Oh, but my friends, it only gets better. A nice little man in a white truck rang my doorbell yesterday morning and placed in the hands of my bath-robed and fuzzy-slippered neighbor (because delivery guys have a ring every doorbell policy) a package containing the late Tibor Kalman’s monograph, Tibor Kalman: Perverse Optimist. Schwing! I remember seeing this book around when I was in college. The particularly striking cover is what caught my attention. Back then, the only thing I knew about Tibor Kalman was that he had something to do with the magazine Colors and he was kind of a big deal. Beyond that, I had no real grasp of his contribution to graphic design, so the book didn’t much interest me. Still, the image of that cover, the smiling face, the warm hues that make me think of 85 degree weather and farms I’ve never been to, had somehow been sandblasted into my memory.

It wasn’t until recently that I started thinking about Tibor Kalman, partly due to the hours spent gathering content for this blog. I came across a story about how to celebrate the launch of Perverse Optimist, he held a party in a supermarket and gave away signed canned goods as party favors. I wanted to know more about the mind and work of a man who was obviously experiencing the world differently than your average person. And so, I ordered the hardcover and it came yesterday! Schwing!

I got through the first 75 pages last night and I can definitely see why the reviews for this book are so good. Since I haven’t read through it I wont try to do a review but the AIGA Design Archives has a great description here.


photo by Andre-Myopia Pix

Also, picked up Print & Finish, a handsome little book which details various printing and finishing techniques. Schwing! Nicely designed and filled with great technical information, I’d definitely recommend you get yourself a copy. The one I snagged was the last one on the shelf at B&N, and it seems Amazon only has 1 copy in stock. Better hurry!

By the way, I did some cleaning up around here. Let me know what you think of the new look. I’m still tweaking it so some of the old entries look a little wonky but in due time.

Happy Friday!

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