Mightier than the Pen

Let me compliment you on the December 2016 Reed magazine. I was delighted to find that it had zero references to calligraphy or to Prof. Lloyd Reynolds [English and art 1929-69]. (I didn’t do an electronic search. Please don’t tell me I am wrong.)

Reed has a creation myth and tales of lost greatness. Stories are repeated time and time again, without giving the old farts time to die so that the stories can seem new to new ears. Repeating these tales must provide some survival benefit, I suppose.

There is no part of the mythos more annoying to this reader, and less valuable to the future of Reed students, than the calligraphy element. Calligraphy combines a unique combination of deluded self-appreciation and utter lack of value to society. By any metric relating to speed of reading or depth of comprehension of text written in this sort of script, calligraphy is a dead loss. As a bonus negative, the writing itself is slow. I place calligraphy on par with teaching a pig to waltz, or teaching oneself to tie a bow tie 13 different ways. (Oups! Sorry about your cover art!)

Please carry on with your good works. I know you will backslide. It’s hard to break a bad habit.

I forgive you in advance. It’s no real problem with me. When I see an article with mention of calligraphy or Reynolds, I just throw the magazine away and carry on. No donation that year!

Lawrence Butcher ’75

Mountain View, CA

Editor's Note: For many years we have maintained an unofficial policy of mentioning Lloyd Reynolds at least six times in every issue (it used to be six per article, but we decided to ease up). I have no idea how an entire issue slipped through the copy desk in this lamentable Lloydless state, but I’m glad you enjoyed your reprieve. It will be brief.