“Just My Type” of Christmas present

Slightly wayward but undeniably brilliant social chronicler Simon Garfield has got a new tome out, “Just My Type: A Book About Fonts” (Profile Books), which is a surefire Xmess winner for anyone with even a modicum of interest in design and the peeps behind it. If it’s a quarter as good as his masterful history of British grappling in the 1970s, “The Wrestling” (Faber), then “Just My Type” will be a hugely enjoyable read. Here’s the blurb:

“Just My Type is a book of stories. About how Helvetica and Comic Sans took over the world. About why Barack Obama opted for Gotham, while Amy Winehouse found her soul in 30s Art Deco. About the great originators of type, from Baskerville to Zapf, or people like Neville Brody who threw out the rulebook, or Margaret Calvert, who invented the motorway signs that are used from Watford Gap to Abu Dhabi. About the pivotal moment when fonts left the world of Letraset and were loaded onto computers … and typefaces became something we realized we all have an opinion about.”

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“Greetings, grapple fans…”

With the large-scale pomp of the WWF, it’s easy to forget that wrestling (like football) used to be a resolutely down-at-heel kids-to-grannies spectacle that was one toe-hold away from the carnival. Whether it was Kent Walton intoning “Greetings, grapple fans…” on ITV’s World of Sport, ushering in such unforgettable characters as Kendo Nagasaki, or Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler (who taught Andy Kaufman to wrestle!) broadcasting live from a church hall in West Memphis, thrills aplenty were to be had.

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