CRAIG CONLEY (Prof. Oddfellow) is recognized by Encarta as “America’s most creative and diligent scholar of letters, words and punctuation.” He has been called a “language fanatic” by Page Six gossip columnist Cindy Adams, a “cult hero” by Publisher’s Weekly, a “monk for the modern age” by George Parker, and “a true Renaissance man of the modern era, diving headfirst into comprehensive, open-minded study of realms obscured or merely obscure” by Clint Marsh. An eccentric scholar, Conley’s ideas are often decades ahead of their time. He invented the concept of the “virtual pet” in 1980, fifteen years before the debut of the popular “Tamagotchi” in Japan. His virtual pet, actually a rare flower, still thrives and has reached an incomprehensible size. Conley’s website is
Featured Book
The Young Wizard's Hexopedia
Search Site

Breathing Circle
Music Box Moment
Cautious or Optimistic
King of Hearts of War and Peace
As I Was, As I Am
Perdition Slip
Loves Me? Loves Me Not?
Wacky Birthday Form
Test Your ESP
Chess-Calvino Dictionary
Is Today the Day?
100 Ways I Failed to Boil Water
"Follow Your Bliss" Compass
"Fortune's Navigator" Compass
Inkblot Oracle
Luck Transfer Certificate
Eternal Life Coupon
Honorary Italian Grandmother E-card
Simple Answers


A Fine Line Between...
A Rose is a ...
Always Remember
Annotated Ellipses
Apropos of Nothing
Book of Whispers
Call it a Hunch
Colorful Allusions
Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up?
Disguised as a Christmas Tree
Don't Take This the Wrong Way
Everybody's Doing This Now
Forgotten Wisdom
Glued Snippets
Go Out in a Blaze of Glory
Hindpsych: Erstwhile Conjectures by the Sometime Augur of Yore
How to Believe in Your Elf
How to Write a Blank Book
I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought
Images Moving Through Time
Indubitably (?)
Inflationary Lyrics
It Bears Repeating
It's Really Happening
Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands
Miscellanies of Mr. Jonathan
Neither Saint- Nor Sophist-Led
No News Is Good News
Non-Circulating Books
Nonsense Dept.
Not Rocket Science
Oldest Tricks in the Book
On One Condition
One Mitten Manager
Only Funny If ...
P I n K S L i P
Peace Symbols to Color
Postcard Transformations
Presumptive Conundrums
Puzzles and Games
Letter Grids
Tic Tac Toe Story Generator
Which is Funnier
Restoring the Lost Sense
Rhetorical Answers, Questioned
Rhetorical Questions, Answered!
Semicolon Moons
Semicolon's Dream Journal
Separated at Birth?
Simple Answers
Someone Should Write a Book on ...
Something, Defined
Staring at the Sun
Staring Into the Depths
Strange Dreams
Strange Prayers for Strange Times
Suddenly, A Shot Rang Out
Telescopic Em Dashes
Temporal Anomalies
The 40 Most Meaningful Things
The Ghost in the [Scanning] Machine
The Only Certainty
The Right Word
This May Surprise You
This Terrible Problem That Is the Sea
Two Sides / Same Coin
Uncharted Territories
We Are All Snowflakes
What I Now Know
What's In a Name
Yearbook Weirdness
Yesterday's Weather
Your Ship Will Come In


July 2020
June 2020
May 2020
April 2020
March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006


Magic Words
Jonathan Caws-Elwitt
Martha Brockenbrough
Gordon Meyer
Dr. Boli
Serif of Nottingblog
Joe Brainard's Pyjamas
Ironic Sans
Brian Sibley's Blog
Abecedarian personal effects of 'a mad genius'
A Turkish Delight of musings on languages, deflations of metaphysics, vauntings of arcana, and great visual humor.


July 18, 2018 (permalink)

From A Most Wanted Man by John le Carré, 2008.
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

June 4, 2018 (permalink)

From Der Orchideengarten, 1919.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.
#vintage illustration #axe #ampersand #severed hand #bloody ax
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

May 31, 2018 (permalink)

From Lustige Blätter, 1899.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.
#vintage illustration #ampersand #conductor
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

April 8, 2018 (permalink)

"I was fast developing into a mammoth interrogation point, and I would rather have been an ampersand, or anything else in the shape of a contraction of my condition."  From A Home Course in Mental Science by Helen Wilmans, 2014.
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

August 31, 2017 (permalink)

#otherworld #life after death #beyond the veil #afterlife #ampersand
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

January 31, 2017 (permalink)

A, B & C (or, technically, A, C & B -- the logo of Adam and Charles Black publishers, London, 1913).
#typography #hand lettering #ampersand #a b c
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

January 17, 2017 (permalink)

Here's a precursor to Gary Barwin's ampersand collages.  From Die Bühne, 1926.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.
#vintage illustration #gary barwin #ampersand #scythe #art
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

June 8, 2016 (permalink)

Here's an inverted ampersand from 1908.
#skull and crossbones #ampersand #vintage postcard
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

April 4, 2016 (permalink)

From The Fables of Æsop by Joseph Jacobs, 1894.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.
#vintage illustration #ampersand #aesop #art
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

March 4, 2016 (permalink)

Ampersand royalty?  Here's "His Grace the Dook of Ampassy-Etcetera" (All the Year Round, Sept. 22, 1866).  It's a page from our rare collection of ampersand lore, entitled simply Ampersand.  So extraordinary are the nuggests we gathered that a prominent website dedicated to ampersands was afraid to review our book, thinking we had made it all up.  They didn't realize the pleasure we take in citing legitimate sources; that's what makes our painstaking research so much fun — to uncover incredible truths that we can actually back up.  Meanwhile, a courteous bow to Duke Ampersand may be in order.  (By the way, the Duke's name, "Ampassy-Etcetera," is one of the great many surprising synonyms for "ampersand" that we have collected in our book.  We're honored that our glossary was reproduced in Edvin Thungren's book The Ampersand.)
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

August 21, 2015 (permalink)

Here's a treble clef ampersand from The American Annual of Photography, 1892.
#hand lettering #ampersand #light and dark #sun and shade
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

July 26, 2015 (permalink)

This is the proper way to pluralize the ampersand.  From Shakespeare: A Revelation: A Novel by Henry Lumley, 1899.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.

#vintage illustration #ampersand
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

April 7, 2015 (permalink)

Ampersands are held together by sections of chain and screws, as we see in this illustration from 1886.  See the very strange history of the ampersand in the book called Ampersand.
#punctuation #ampersand #bolt #screw
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

February 2, 2015 (permalink)

Ampersand pipe via David Sanden.
"An ampersand, that convoluted piece of plumber's piping." —Joseph Skibell, A Curable Romantic
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

November 18, 2014 (permalink)

"The defiant ampersand still visible on his forehead." —Brian Joseph Davis, Portable Altamont

Prof. Oddfellow sports a scarlet ampersand at Saint Michael's Mount in Cornwall.
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

August 5, 2013 (permalink)

Our best feedback tends to come from outside our target market.  For example, we just received a 5-star review for our highly unusual manual on ampersands, by someone who accidentally bought it:

This book was ordered by mistake.  But it was one of those little gems.  Get a copy & judge for yourself.
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

July 10, 2012 (permalink)

An illustration from an 1885 issue of Harper's magazine.  The caption reads: "View East from Ampersand."
#vintage illustration #mountain #view
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

July 9, 2012 (permalink)

"I wanted to be a vice president at a place with an ampersand."
Lee Nichols, Hand-Me-Down (2012)
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

March 13, 2012 (permalink)

For Gary Barwin.
Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

March 2, 2012 (permalink)

Gary Barwin's "handpersand" reminded us that some handy ampersands are capable of grasping without fingers.

Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest

Page 1 of 5

> Older Entries...

Original Content Copyright © 2020 by Craig Conley. All rights reserved.