Sacked by the "downturn", an unemployed architect touring the country in a bus...

I used to live in New York City. I designed homes for the tycoons of Wall Street; Park Avenue, Scarsdale, Greenwich. It was great fun. And, after years of saving up for a down payment, I was just about to buy my own little place in Fleetwood, half an hour north of the city, when the economy fell apart. Architects are like canaries in a coal mine when the economy slows, and true to form, there were massive layoffs in firms all over the country. Devastation of the profession. So, I decided to try to find something else to do for a while. I bought a 23' school bus and I'm on the road to see if I can figure out what that might be.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Noam Chomsky

A departing resident, Jess, just recently married and wonderfully matched to also departing Chris, made available some used books.  I requested a copy of The Chomsky Reader.  In it, I found one essay, the first of his writings I've ever read, so relevant to my personal reaction to recent circumstances, that I searched for a copy on line to post here.  It's thick reading, but great.  The fact that philosophers have been thinking for hundreds of years about the debilitating effects of capitalism, with it's attendant loss of freedom, and the exultation of the artist/craftsman's relation to his work, made me tear up.  It's writing that made me feel both profoundly validated and lonely.  Here is the link:

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Living in Palo Alto...

I'm staying in a collective of some old time commune dwellers/ philosopher teachers at Stanford University, consisting of a family of three parents with three children, plus a couple of friends, and about a dozen Stanford students.  It's quite a pleasant, intelligent community, with a scientific bent, a penchant for doing good in the world, and no new ageyness.  There are 3 dwellings here, two quite old, one recently renovated.  The family unit is about to embark on a tear-down and rebuild of the next.  I am recommending improvements to their plans, mostly tweaking and finessing the spaces without changing topology.  I am being provided with food, shelter, good cheer.  I hope to network a bit as the project progresses.  Click the pics for blow ups.