Spy of the Month

spy of the month

Agent Name: Pistachio Low-rider
Real Name: Gage Salzano

Congratulations, Spy! How does it feel?
Thank you! It feels amazing. It really makes all of the late nights decoding worth it.

How did you first get involved at 826CHI?
From one spy to another. A...close acquaintance…told me that a bunch of cool, smart & creative people were up to something in Wicker Park.

What has been your favorite 826 experience so far?
So, I get to work on laying out a bunch of the chapbooks. My favorite part definitely is reading through all of the kids’ super inventive, emotional and uplifting writing while arranging and organizing them in the books.

That and every time I walk by the store on Milwaukee, I get a boost of energy thinking about how cool it is to know how many kids are being inspired to write more everyday by what’s happening in that place.

What do you do when you aren't working undercover?
My cover during the day is as a graphic designer where I get to work on a bunch of projects on cool things like logos, websites, print brochures and so on. And during the night I love to cook (or dream about cooking and instead make a mess in our kitchen), go running on the 606, listen to way too many podcasts and watch movies.

As an aspiring cook, what's your favorite dish you've ever made?
I wish I could say a really complex thing like Mushroom Risotto or Duck Confit or something but it’s really simple:

Every Sunday like clockwork my mom would cook pasta sauce and meatballs and we’d all eat together as a family after church. This year I finally got the recipe from her and started to make it as close to the original as I can. I can’t make it like she does, but I think it’s so cool how food can take you back to a place and time no matter whats going on in your life.

As a graphic designer, what's your go-to font?
Well first I will correct you and say the correct term is typeface. [��] Just kidding, it doesn’t really matter to anyone besides other graphic designers.

I tend to use Clarendon a lot. (I think I used it for one of the chapbooks if I remember correctly!) It’s a really bold serif typeface which feels smart but also has a friendly, youthful vibe since the letters are a little wider than traditionally.

Serif’s are those little slabs and hooks on the corners of letters which makes them great for prose and body copy since they provide more clarity between letters. Here’s a little experiment you can try with fonts that come on every computer to see what I mean: type a capital “I” next to a lowercase “L” in Arial next to the same in Times New Roman. You’ll see that you can actually tell the two apart in Times New Roman but they look identical in Arial. This is why most books, magazines, and editorial websites use serif typefaces, while sans-serifs are good for headlines and things like that.

Our top agents always have the best codenames. What's yours?
OK, don’t tell anyone but my codename is…“Pistachio Low-rider.”

Any words of wisdom for potential spies of the month?
Keep a paper trail. [��]