This is a post in a group series called #ArchiTalks in which Bob Borson of Life of an Architect gives a group of us architects a theme or a set of questions and we all post our response… this month’s theme: “New Year, New _____” to read how the others had to say checkout the links at the bottom of the page…
There is a YouTuber who I just discovered recently named Jake Roper (AKA Vsauce3) who was diagnosed with cancer just a month of two ago (prognosis is good.) He did a video from his hospital bed about what went through his mind when he found out he had cancer: he feared that he hadn’t MADE enough stuff. He talked about how important it was for him as a film maker to create things, and hearing him talk about making things reminded me of something I have been taking for granted recently…
I signed up for this career of architecture.
I have sat myself down on a conveyer belt that, baring total breakdown or withdrawal from “the system,” will result in me contributing to a large number of buildings hear on the earth.
How f—ing cool is that!?
The idea of creating things used to enamor me so much. Though somewhere in college it started to feel just a little bit like a chore—not entirely like a chore, but like sometimes 50% chore, 50% awesome… sometimes worse. However, when I hear Jake or Casey Neistat talk about what it means to them to make things, it reminds me why I chose to become an architect and why I make YouTube videos and blog posts and T-shirts and coffee mugs (that’s in the works) and benches (that’s also currently in the works.)
The idea that I may leave this world having not contributed a relatively substantial slice of STUFF, is so foreign to me that I forgot how lucky I am to draw buildings for a living.
There are a lot of people who work as business consultants, or analysts, or accountants, or other careers that don’t yield anything tangible, and I think a lot of people struggle with that fact and feel dissatisfied about it. We in the architectural profession are much less susceptible to that kind of inner tension. But like a fish doesn’t know he is in water, I think we are susceptible to forgetting how special it is to actually make tangible things—lots of them by the end of one’s career.
For the new year, I want to appreciate how awesome it is to make things a little bit more. ☺
Here is one of the first videos I ever made. I am really proud of it. Let me know in the comments below about something you made that you are really proud of!
One more thing,
Speaking of mortality and an appreciation for life…
The participants of this ArchiTalks blog post series are asking you to help a friend of ours who is dealing with a family tragedy. Rusty Long is an Architect based out of Portsmouth, Virginia, whose son Matthew is fighting for his life. Here is Matthew’s story, as told by his Dad, Rusty:
Matthew Long was born May 29th, 2013, happy, and seemingly healthy. Less than two days later his mother and I found ourselves in an neonatal intensive care unit waiting room, listening to a rushed intensive care doctor explain how our son needed immediate dialysis to save his life. The disease, he briefly explained, was one of a group of disorders called Urea Cycle Disorders, which impact the way the body breaks down protein. We later discovered that Matthew’s particular variant is called OTC Deficiency, a particularly severe form of it in fact, which results in a rapid rise of ammonia in the blood, called hyperammonemia, resulting in devastating neurological damage. This form of OTC is so severe, Matthew has virtually no peers who have survived it. Once the immediate crisis was arrested, we came to find out more about the disease and the impact of this initial event.
The disease is inherited, and the damage is permanent. Treatment consists of a combination of medications, low protein medical diet, and ultimately a liver transplant. Matthew was fortunate to experience no additional hyperammonemic events in the following fifteen months of life, and had a liver transplant on August 24th, 2014. The cure for the disease, a transplant, isn’t so much a cure as trading one condition for another. While we will never risk the chance of another ammonia spike, Matthew is on a half a dozen or more medications at any given time to avoid rejection. Despite these challenges, intensive daily therapy for cerebral palsy (a result of the initial damage), limited motor function, and various other challenges along the way, our son is remarkably happy and has changed all our lives for the better. He’s taught us to be stronger than we ever thought possible, to have faith beyond human understanding, and the immeasurable value of life.
The #ArchiTalks community is hoping to raise $5,500 to help Architect Rusty Long and his family reach their financial goal on . If each reader of this post contributes a small amount, our impact will be massive and we can make a difference for Matthew’s family. Click here now and donate $2.00.
Rusty is an awesome guy, and I hope you would consider donating.
Enoch Sears – Business of Architecture (@businessofarch)
New Year, New Community on Business of Architecture
Bob Borson – Life of An Architect (@bobborson)
Matthew Stanfield – FiELD9: architecture (@FiELD9arch)
New Year, New CAD
Marica McKeel – Studio MM (@ArchitectMM)
New Year, New Adventures
Lee Calisti, AIA – Think Architect (@LeeCalisti)
new race new year new start
Mark R. LePage – Entrepreneur Architect (@EntreArchitect)
New Year. New Budget.
Lora Teagarden – L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
New Year, New Goals
Collier Ward – One More Story (@BuildingContent)
New Year, New Business
Nicholas Renard – dig Architecture (@dig-arch)
New Year, A New Hope
Jes Stafford – Modus Operandi Design (@modarchitect)
New Year. New Gear.
Cindy Black – Rick & Cindy Black Architects (*)
New Year, New Casita
Eric T. Faulkner – Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
New Year, New Underwear
Rosa Sheng – Equity by Design (@EquityxDesign)
New Year, New Era
Michele Grace Hottel – Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
“new year, new _____”
Meghana Joshi – IRA Consultants, LLC (@MeghanaIRA)
New Year, New Plan
Amy Kalar – ArchiMom (@AmyKalar)
New Year, New Adventures
Michael Riscica – Young Architect (@YoungArchitxPDX)
New Year, New Life!
Stephen Ramos – BUILDINGS ARE COOL (@sramos_BAC)
New Year, New Home
brady ernst – Soapbox Architect (@bradyernstAIA)
New Year, New·ly Adult Architect
Brian Paletz – The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
A Little Premature
Eric Wittman – intern[life] (@rico_w)
new year, new [engagement]
Sharon George – Architecture By George (@sharonraigeorge)
New Year, New Business
Brinn Miracle – Architangent (@simplybrinn)
New Year, New Perspective
Emily Grandstaff-Rice – Emily Grandstaff-Rice AIA (@egraia)
The New New
Jarod Hall – di’velept (@divelept)
New Year New Reality
Anthony Richardson – That Architecture Student (@anth_rich)
New Year New Desk
Drew Paul Bell – Drew Paul Bell (@DrewPaulBell)
New Year, New Appreciation
Greg Croft – Sage Leaf Group (@croft_gregory)
New Year, New Goals
Jeffrey A Pelletier – Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
New Year New Office
Aaron Bowman – Product & Process (@PP_Podcast)
New Year, More Change
Kyu Young Kim – Palo Alto Design Studio (@sokokyu)
New Year, New Office Space
Jared W. Smith – Architect OWL (@ArchitectOWL)
New Year, New Reflection
Rusty Long – Rusty Long, Architect (@rustylong)
New Year, New Direction