What is it about maps that attract many men from all walks of life? Is it a desire to see what the world has to offer? A fascination with all of the different borders and biomes? A longing to be part of something much greater than oneself? To get some perspective, we asked cartographer Willie Longecoque what sparked his interest in the business.
“Scales,” he told reporters as he barely lifted his eyes from his collection of curiously smelly and worn maps. “Not the weight ones… but the, you know. Inches ones. The ones where one inch is something like five thousand on the map,” he added.
“Look at this one right here. It goes all the way from New York to New Jersey. And this one? All the way from New York to Copenhagen. Three inches, hah. Try 3,843 miles.” Though we were unable to verify his findings, markings on the map told us all we needed to know.
“I don’t think I’m weird at all. I think I’m actually really normal. Everyone does it. Mercator, Galileo, anyone who has ever published a geography textbook. We’ve all done it.”
His ex-girlfriend, whom he unfortunately must live with until the lease terminates, told reporters, “For the record, there is a lot of artificial inflation using the Mercator projection. But I guess it’s all about the shape of the map.”
And there you have it! Cartography is not only a vessel for curiosity and wonder for all of the different parts of the world, but also a great way to boost self-confidence.