Wednesday, July 1, 2015

A Contradiction in Typeface

On the way back from Kansas City the other day, I stopped at a rest area in southern Minnesota along the Straight River. Can't say I've ever heard of the Straight River before that moment, but now I will not forget it because of the typeface used on the sign:

That typeface is about as far from straight as you can get -- in both senses of the word. There's hardly a straight line in it, and it's even farther from the other meaning (synonyms like staid or mainstream come to mind) with its bottom-heavy serifs, all-lowercase setting, and generally psychedelic vibe.

Not the kind of thing I would expect from a state-run rest area, but I assume it is a little bit of the early 1970s being maintained by the state Department of Transportation.


And what is the name of that typeface? Bottleneck, released in 1972.

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