Why do I use the cybernym “Typehuile”? Many websites and other cyber locations ask for a single word UserID. Recently, I decided to jump into Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn in earnest, and of course, they asked for a UserID. I did Twitter first, and since it is so parsimonious with its character limit, I really had to use the special retorts to condense my name. In a moment of inspiration, I thought of “typehuile,” which comes from “type,” for—d’oh—type, and “huile,” the French word for oil, as in peinture à l’huile, ta da, oil paint.
I lived in France as a middle-school child and took art lessons there (mostly pastels, charcoals, and tempera, but a brief introduction to oil painting). In high school (in the U.S. again), my first job was working for my uncle in his typesetting shop, complete with handset type and three Linotypes. I quickly fell under the spell of type, type designs, and the foundations of graphic design.
This is a font of Optima, showing the upper- and lowercase letters. (The photograph is correctly oriented. You read, and set, metal type from left to right and bottom to top.)
Also, “typehuile” sounds like “type wheel” when you say it aloud.
Photograph of Optima by Matthias Kabel, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Charakterset_of_Optima.jpg