My Dad’s Lists

One of the motivations in my personal zeitgeist as I started this site was my long fascination with other people’s handwritten habits and styles.

I recently noticed that the copious lists my Dad relies on have the same structure. For instance:

  • Always two colors — the list title being a separate color from the body. In this case, Red.
  • The title in all uppercase.
  • The list items often in all lowercase.
  • Though you can’t see it in the above example, he told me that to-do lists always have each item begin with the action/verb. “Wash dishes”, “Call doctor”, etc. There is generally space between the action and noun so that he can easily scan the list and pick out same/similar actions.

No particular point other than I find such things endlessly interesting.

Thoughts On The Future of The Cramped

I’ve been thinking a lot about this site lately. As you’ve surely noticed, I haven’t posted to it in a while. The last post before today was on July 1st — almost 6 months ago.

There are a number of reasons for this. One is that, when I started this site, I had some collaborators and contributors who have since moved on to other things. All of our lives are busy and we all have other sites that are more primary for us. Here’s mine. So it’s difficult to keep up a separate, single interest, site.

The truth is, I have lots of interests and my focus on which of those I’m more interested in than others changes. There was a time when I was super focused on the idea of a site focused not so much on the stuff of analog writing but the act of it and I think this site did a very good job of that. I felt it was a voice that was missing in the conversation around pens and paper and pencils and typewriters and etc. “Sure, but what about what you DO with those things?” is the question this site sought to explore. I’m proud of it.

I’ve also been in this position before. A very popular site that I’m pretty proud of that I’ve ended when I felt I had all I’ve had to say on that subject.

So, I’ve been thinking to myself that I’ve said all I have to say on this one… But then the previous two links pop into my focus and here I am excited about finding more stuff like that and posting about it here and…

All this is to say that I’m sorry for the lack of posts around here and that may or may not change and I’m just not sure what will become of it but know that I know and that I’m thinking about it more than you know.

The Pencil Tour // (fleeting)

The Pencil Tour // (fleeting)

In April of 2020, I took a month-long tour of my pencil cups, posting brief profiles each day. The individual posts are still up, with the tag pencils, but I’ve decided to create a dedicated page for all the entries here.

An incredible collection, with some interesting reflections, on pencils from around the world. Robert is someone who really uses pencils so his thoughts are worth taking seriously. Nice to see them collected in a single place.

The Card — Execupundit

The Card — Execupundit

I use Trello to keep track of things, note progress, and squish special projects onto one “board.”

Handy enough.

But my real guide for the day is a simple notecard.

Yep. Mr. Wade is onto something here.

I’ve been running my whole day-to-day life off of 3×5 card for about 20 years now.

On the front of the card I write down the tasks I’d like to get done (and really believe I can get done) that day.

On the back of the card, I capture any incoming tasks that pop up or things I need to write down — like a scratch pad (i.e, things that won’t get done today but I’d like to keep for some other time).

As I get stuff done, I mark it done. Things that don’t get done either get moved to the next day’s list or deferred for later. I notate all of that using my Dash/Plus method for each item at the end of the day.

I keep the card upright, in my face, and looking pretty using Ugmonk’s Analog card holder (just the holder, I use my own 3×5 cards).

Simple. Effective. Never runs out of battery. What we believe in.