Eddie Bauer


  1. Chips Mackinolty said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 2:02 am

    The demise of cursive, over time, has been going for a lot longer than the advent of so-called Gen Z. As a kid in Australia in the 1960s we were bludgeoned into a "modern cursive"–a substantially simpler version of what we called "running writing". And of course, at the time, the world of Letraset was introduced which radically changed the capacity of any of us to access a variety of serif and sans serif types. And Letraset was hopeless in terms of mimicking classic, old style cursive. And with access to computer driven typefaces, it is little wonder that old style cursive has seen its day

  2. Thomas said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 6:33 am

    I don't know this brand, but the new logo does look better. I like the goose. The cursive wasn't too pretty to begin with. But maybe my age is showing.

  3. Richard Hershberger said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 7:43 am

    Why the sigh? Is it regret that the kids aren't learning cursive, or a dismissal of that proposition, or that this is a reason to change the logo?

    I can can confirm the proposition that they aren't learning cursive. My two teenagers went to a very good public elementary school. All they got on cursive was enough to recognize that this is writing. The time freed up by not teaching them more was spend teaching them to type, which is called "keyboarding" nowadays.

    My younger went to camp for a week. Relatives were encouraged to write letters. My mother sent one, written in cursive. Her hand is a thing of beauty, entirely and easily legible if you can read cursive. The kid had to take it to an adult to decipher. My older is an avid and widely inclusive reader: the sort of kid who would consider paleography a perfectly reasonable study. We were at a small museum last week that had posted a letter written in the early 19th century. I asked if he could read it. He could, though with more trouble than I had. All in all this seems about right. Understand reading cursive as paleography. Those with an interest will take it up readily. Those without won't.

    As for the periodic hand-wringing, my usual response to those who lament that the schools aren't teaching cursive is to ask what should be dropped from the curriculum to free the time for this. Please be specific.

  4. Ralph J Hickok said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 8:28 am

    Does not learning to write cursive actually equate to not being able to read cursive?
    I can read Greek and Cyrillic, in the sense that I can transliterate them, but I can't write either one.

  5. David Marjanović said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 9:17 am

    As for the periodic hand-wringing, my usual response to those who lament that the schools aren't teaching cursive is to ask what should be dropped from the curriculum to free the time for this. Please be specific.

    Uh. Something that would pass for cursive in the US is the only thing I was ever taught to write. We weren't taught to draw printed letters by hand. At all.

  6. Nathan said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 10:46 am

    I often see confident pronouncements online about what American schools supposedly do or do not teach, but there is no national uniformity in American public school curricula. Even in the age of Common Core, local variation is tremendous.
    I'm willing to accept the proposition that the teaching of cursive has ended in some places; in others it's alive and well. I have three teenagers, all of whom were taught cursive around age 8-10 in much the same way as I was a generation earlier.

  7. Victor Mair said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 11:12 am

    The sigh is because we lost what I think was a beautiful, distinctive logo.

  8. Gregory Kusnick said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 11:43 am

    The old logo isn't lost; it's just retired from active service. The company still retains the rights to it and has the option of bringing it out of retirement for various special-edition or commemorative items. As I see it, all that's happened here is that they've added a new, more contemporary logo to their portfolio for items targeted at a younger demographic.

  9. Victor Mair said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 11:59 am

    Next time you see the old logo in active use, please call it to my attention.

    Many of my favorite logos were "retired" during the last 3-4 years, but I haven't seen one of them in service since.


  10. Barbara Phillips Long said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 1:48 pm

    I am unsentimental about the loss of cursive, for reasons I have given before on this blog. The U.S. has gone through many versions of handwriting (for a look at different styles, examine census records from different eras).

    In regard to the Bauer logo, I like the new one because of the added graphic of the goose. I like the capital B and I think the Bauer in cursive is attractive. I totally despise the capital E, (which does not match the E I was taught to write), mostly because by closing off the spaces at the end of the horizontals on the right side of the E makes it look like it should be some other letter, such as the capital S.

  11. ~flow said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 3:38 pm

    I won't comment much on the apparent loss of cursive (which is a shame), but just say that maybe they changed the logo b/c of GenZ, maybe they're just following a widespread trend that has been going for something like maybe ten years now, where all brands across the board are coaxed by beancounters and corporate media types to adapt to the 'fresh new style' that in reality is just as fresh and new graphically as are the heartless and overpriced condos that are popping up everywhere these days, their architectural counterparts. Another outcome of this deplorable trend is the dominance of what has come to be called Corporate Memphis (cf https://www.wired.co.uk/article/corporate-memphis-design-tech).

  12. Mike Anderson said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 4:28 pm

    Score another one for the Old School!

    First the young'uns lost the ability to tie a bowtie, losing their manual dexterity,

    Then they simultaneously opted out of marriage and manual transmissions, becoming shiftless bastards. And proving the stick shift as a low-cost anti-carjacking device, to boot.

    And now they've made silly old cursive handwriting into a secret code for us Greedy Geezers!

    The upside of longevity is the endless amusement provided by each succeeding generation of wiseacres.

  13. Bloix said,

    November 25, 2023 @ 7:02 pm

    Article in the current New Yorker on developments in the long-time competition between two NASA logos, known as the meatball and the worm (spoiler: the worm is back!)

  14. ~flow said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 4:48 am

    @Bloix very much to the point! And I can see why NASA would rather be associated with their 1960s breakthrough (the meatball) than with the ensuing mothballing of spaceflight in the 1970s. If they'd hire a designer these days they'd probably just typeset NASA in a Helvetica-look-alike and call it a day.

  15. Victor Mair said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 6:47 am

    My handwriting is horrible. It is some kind of cursive, in that the letters are connected, but it is not graceful or esthetically pleasing. I often refer to it as chicken scratching on the paper. But I'm satisfied that it is convenient, mostly legible (not everyone else agrees on that point), efficient, and fast.

    It is painful for me to print letters separately, and I am unable to comprehend how people can do it quickly, having to lift the tip of one's writing instrument off the paper so frequently, and then put it back down, again and again.

  16. Victor Mair said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 7:17 am

    A confession.

    Something strange happened at my home last week. It may speak to the point that is being discussed in the o.p. and ensuing comments.


    At the beginning of the week, I received a postcard with a nice greeting from California wishing the recipient health and happiness. It was written in a graceful, cursive hand, but one that required a bit of effort to read.

    It was addressed to someone surnamed Huang who lives on 33 Meadow Lane in Swarthmore, PA 19081. Trouble is, my surname is Mair and I live on 33 Princeton Ave. in Swarthmore, PA 19081.

    I put the postcard back in a nearby postbox.

    It came back to me the next day!!

    Along with another postcard from the same person in California addressed to the same Carolyn Huang who lives at 33 Meadow Lane in Swarthmore, PA 19081.

    That freaked me out!

    I highlighted the street name on both of the postcards and put them back in the postbox.

    I'll let you know what happens next.

    N.B.: To protect the innocent, all names and contents on the postcards at issue are fictitious, but roughly analogous to what was on the originals.

  17. Victor Mair said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 7:23 am

    P.S.: I vaguely recall that something similar happened to me about 10-15 years ago.

    I give the post office a lot of credit for doing their best to deliver the mail against seemingly insurmountable odds.


    Since it's the weekend, I may not know how this turns out till Wednesday or Thursday.

  18. Rodger C said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 11:01 am

    A friend from Spain once addressed a letter to Kenova, WV and it was delivered to Vienna, WV. Her husband looked at it and said he'd have done the same thing.

  19. Rodger C said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 11:14 am

    My previous comment illustrates a problem with cursive: Different countries teach it in different ways, and it also changes over time. I was taught an ugly system (sometimes called Palmer) that in time degenerated into something like what Victor describes of himself. In my first semester of grad school I encountered the Puffin Book of Better Handwriting and taught myself Italic chancery hand. I was charmed by its crispness and its obvious origin in slanted, run-together printing; it made Palmer vel sim. look like degenerate, fancified versions of itself. It does require lifting the instrument now and then, but I've since learned that our teachers' insistence on connecting all the letters in Palmer originated in its use by scriveners. So they were still teaching us to be little scriveners in the 1950s.

    Of course I rarely use cursive at al nowadays, aside from my signature. I write my own private notes and first drafts in a script based on all-capitals printing (my first creative writing attempts were mostly cartoon strips). It evolved early on into a scribble resembling ancient Roman handwriting. The fact that no one else can read it is a plus.

  20. M said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 11:16 am

    In schools where cursive is not taught, how do pupils learn to sign their names? Do they learn only how to sign electronically?

  21. David Morris said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 4:45 pm

    Delivery people may not be able to read printed letters, either. We regularly get deliveries for the nearest cross street (at least it's round the corner, which is better than 4 Our Street and 4 Cross Street being opposite sides of the same intersection – they have large signs on their houses). And once we got a delivery for a street number in Victoria – wrong name (they wouldn't know that), street number, street, suburb and *state*.

  22. Brett said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 8:56 pm

    I am with Barbara Phillips Long on this. After more than a quarter century of extensive shopping for Eddie Bauer products (and once having excellent sex in an Eddie Bauer Outlet fitting room), I am much more interested in the quality of the goose in the logo than in the writing. I was quite disappointed when the new jeans my girlfriend (yes, the same one) purchased had a schematic post-modern goose rather than the previous detailed sketch on the waistband label. Any logo that brings back a better-looking goose is an improvement in my view.

  23. Chris Button said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 10:41 pm

    The use of caps is surprising and appears on trend. The lack of serifs is unsurprising and appears off trend.

    As for Gen Z not being able to read the old one, I don’t buy it. I think it more likely that someone said that this cursive style looks antiquated and so won’t appeal to Gen Z, and that was then misinterpreted.

  24. Chris Button said,

    November 26, 2023 @ 10:43 pm

    I meant to say:

    The use of caps is surprising and appears offtrend. The lack of serifs is unsurprising and appears on trend.

  25. maidhc said,

    November 27, 2023 @ 1:45 am

    I never learned to write cursive. When I came to the US, all the kids already wrote cursive, but no one bothered to teach me, so I struggled along with terrible handwriting. Later I went to a different school, where they taught us to write italic script with a fountain pen. That was a life changer.

    The nice thing about italic is that you only join as many letters as you can do without moving your hand. Then you lift the pen and move your hand. With cursive you're trying to move your hand at the same time that you're writing.

    I can sympathize with the youngsters though, because I can read Cyrillic but I can't read Cyrillic cursive. But I admit I haven't made much of an effort to learn.

  26. Julian said,

    November 27, 2023 @ 10:55 pm

    My mother , born 1926, had beautiful cursive handwriting. I could hardly read a word of it. It looked like a long string of m's and w's.

  27. TIC Redux said,

    December 1, 2023 @ 6:06 pm

    I'm 62 (as of this very day, in fact) and I learned cursive at some point in my early elementary schooling (in New Jersey, in the late 1960's)… But I've long used it only for my (by now quite stylized) signature… For most of my life, I've written/printed everything in (quite clear) all-caps, block letters… But all that's neither here nor there… This post and comment thread have r'minded me of the added layer of joy (and challenge, and amusement) that I got in helping my grandmother (who was born in 1915) finish one of her daily pastimes in her later years… She passed away (still sharp as a tack!) in 2020, at 104… And, although I gen'rally, have no difficulty reading cursive, I must admit to more than a bit of amused bewilderment when trying to decipher her elegant, stand-alone cursive letters in the tiny crossword-puzzle blocks… Such happy mem'ries!…
    Also — and more on-topic — I'm now r'minded that I need to do a bit of poking around to try to see whether an intriguing theory(?) about a little-considered factor in the slow demise of cursive beginning in the middle of the last century has been discussed in this forum… In a nutshell, it's been posited that connected (cursive) "writing" is an artifact of the mechanics of writing with nibbed pens — and their (requisite) flowing, watery inks… As this line of reasoning goes, the introduction and eventual ubiquity of ball-point pens — and their thicker, less drip-prone inks — contributed (along with sev'ral more widely considered factors) to the rise of disconnected (non-cursive) "printing"…

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