I found myself telling a lot of people the following this week:
“The most important thing in life, in any given situation, is necessity.”
It’s weird to have to remind a living, breathing organism of that.
But that goes to show how many layers of fat there are between us and our pulse.
The concept that keeps me driven every morning is necessity.
It might sound weird, corny, or twisted, but I like to scare myself with this concept.
I keep as little money as I can in my wallet.
The prospect of consequence vs. gold is the first point in the decision tree.
You have to deal with consequence before expansion.
And so I create artificial deadlines for my creative projects because I react to them.
My greatest fear in life is losing my drive and ambition. The easiest way to preserve these qualities is to keep yourself poor.
I am sure there are better ways, but until I figure them out, I want to bleed a bit every day.
I am going to make this post short and to the point.
“Cathedrals” by Jump Little Children is so stunning to me that I feel it tests my capacity for appreciation and passion.
What I mean by this is that the song is gorgeous and consqeuently in order to appreciate it, you need to tap the deepest and wisest parts of yourself. The song asks you to step up.
I felt self-conscious about my striking point of view on this song for awhile. And then I read that Elton John commented that this song was the “most beautiful” song he had ever heard.
So now there are two of us.
The only thing I can accomplish writing about Cathedrals is to point out that I can’t, and that the take-away can only be: go listen to the song.
We’re all in the empathy phase of the CA fires.
But when the fires are extinguished, people will ask, “why did this happen?”, and “how did this happen?”.
Ultimately, someone will not have moved fast enough, or done the right thing, or known something but didn’t act.
Someone else may have neglected something that increased the likelihood of horrible fires.
It is just so rare that something BAD of this magnitude comes to pass without serious finger-pointing.
In about ’96, I wrote a letter to The Onion notifying them of my intent to submit freelance articles. It seemed like such a natural fit. I was bummed when I found out (I think they may have written me back, not sure) that they do not accept submissions:
Why the hell would they have that policy? Think of all the freaks out there who would finally have a place to focus their freak?
Ok, so, pieces I would have written:
I would have given out an annual “Lifetime Underachievement Award”.
Being that I do SEO, I’d have written a futuristic piece:
“People Finally Find Everything; Google Declares Bankruptcy”.
So, it was pretty miserable being a vegetarian in Spain.
Because this is SF and the food here rules, I found that I prefer the tapas places here MORE than in Spain.
Why? Because SF expects vegetarians in their restaurants. Spain, which still allows smoking in airports, restaurants, and probably even in emergency rooms, is deeply rooted in old traditions.
And while Spain is a horrible place to be a vegetarian, it is a delightful place for the heavy weekend drinker (which is why Laurie came with).
Laurie and I got back to the hotel tonight and asked for a bottle of Cava (local Champagne).
(Oh, and let me clarify to those who have asked: Laurie is a friend, not a girlfriend. Well, she is a girlfriend for Tom Bennett. I mentioned that in a much earlier post that some of you never got to.)
Back to the story.
They said it was too late.
It gave the hotel clerk 10 Euros.
Within minutes we got a bottle on ice.
When cash is thrown around, you realize that even socialist countries are morally vacant.
So this is La Sagrada Familia, Gaudi’s true masterpiece.
What’s interesting about it is that construction began in 1882 and it’s still not done.
I know what you’re thinking: if the Spanish didn’t stay up so late, take naps in the middle of the day, and eat that unhealthy food, they’d have finished it by now.
But there is more to the story.
“My client is not in a hurry,” Gaudi said.
I’m not sure if he considered God or humanity his client, but it was certainly one of the two (if not both) and so I can see his point.
He aspired to combine nature and geometry, form and structure. He wanted his buildings to look ALIVE.
What better way to give a building a sense of life and growth than for it to be eternally under construction? Each architectural generation has left its mark.
But a recurring question I have is this: did Gaudi envision his parks and buildings only being populated by tourists?
For instance, the room in the below picture was designed as a place for people to go during “inclement weather”. The windows in the room gave them both protection and a view of the city to create a pensive atmosphere.
However, as you can see, it is now serves as a waiting line for an elevator.
Imagine creating such beautiful parks and buildings for mankind, and in the end, they just become tourist ant farms.