Okay, so now I have received perhaps a half-dozen messages from very different quarters that have taken issue with posts from a few days ago concerning the drawing of me at the top of this page. To summarize, the messages contain one or more of the following:
1. Assertions that I do not know (a) that the drawing is done in a cartoonish (or, more accurately perhaps, comic book) style, (b) that it is very well done as an exemplar of this style, and (c) that part of being done in a cartoonish style is to have the head rounder than human heads typically are.
2. Accusations that I am trying somehow to deny that the drawing is basically a dead-on rendering of what I look like, except (a) in the ways that it is a drawing of me done in a cartoonish style and (b) in the ways that the artist, being perhaps in a merciful mood when taking up his pen, has made the drawing better-looking than I actually am.
3. Affirmations of the merits of the drawing, suggesting-that-I-have-suggested that there is this anti-drawing constituency out there which those e-mailing me wish mightily to denounce, with a zeal normally reserved for war criminals and unrepentant-baby-seal-clubbers.
This necessitates an explicit statement of the official JFW position on the drawing. In a single sentence with various full- and semi-colons: the entire JFW staff uniformly loves the drawing; the proprietor commissioned the drawing; the proprietor asked for something in a cartoon style; the proprietor hinted to the artist might consider erring on the side of making the drawing better-looking than the proprietor actually is; other than this, the proprietor does indeed recognize and aver that the drawing does indeed look much like him; other people than those who've recently e-mailed have also attested to all this; and no one has as yet said that they do not like the drawing, so there is no known anti-drawing constituency that needs to be verbally drawn [ha!] and quartered. The proprietor notes also that nothing in previous posts contradicts the previous sentence. Summary judgment: the drawing is great, esp. considering the low aesthetic capital of its subject.