A Two Font Town

Photoshop UglinessFor those who don’t know that old saying, “A one horse town”, Oroville at various points in its history fits the definition. This is not because it is small (somewhere around 45,000 people these days) or because it is incredibly poor, but more the mentality.
For one thing, the transition from hybrid cars to jacked-up pickup trucks is something else when I visit from San Francisco. The guys (and bizarre girls) who drive these things don’t seem to realize that with what they’d save on gas and tires, they could probably stop eating at Arby’s and possibly upgrade to Jack in the Box’s two tacos for 99 cents package. Oh yeah, there’s an Arby’s there by the way, which is where you eat if you’re a real cowboy and have a stomach you don’t care about. My personal favorite are the not one, but TWO Taco Bells. And a Walmart? Oh yeah, they got a Walmart.
Beyond all of this, I found on my last trip that the lack of design work for flyers, billboards, and publications in general is pretty amazing. There seem to be two fonts: some kind of Times New Roman thing, and then some kind of Arial thing, possibly in a bold. This artificial limit on typography doesn’t warrant more creative design though as it does for some. No, things are laid out in a pretty staid fashion, filling in text until there’s no more room for it in whatever is being designed.
Even through all of this, I do like the town. Probably more to the point, I love the geography of the town. Much like the same as I feel about Arcata, it’s the people that don’t fit me too well. There are folks who try to do things now and again, but the stuck in the mud folks always put up a fuss and the multiple real estate agents on the City Council shoot down anything that isn’t going to make them money. Even given all of this, things are changing and some good folk are moving in because it costs less to live there. Of course, you need to come in with money because there are few if any jobs outside of the service industry. I guess the biggest reason for the change is that the people who would have loved to see a good hangin’ back in the day are dying off. Just for kicks, check out the filming locations on The Klansman.