You need to read less and think more!

This blog is about getting stoked and getting worthwhile things done. There is a sea of useless information bombarding you, and this is a desert island where you beach your boat and build a hut. There are also some clever little construction tricks to be presented.



Sunday, May 12, 2013

What are you leaving behind?

Everything.  You know you are going to die, right?  Someday (hopefully decades from now) you will not be here and odds are most of your stuff will end up in a landfill.   This doesn't have to be a bummer and it is not unrelated to element7concrete.

To be clear, element7concrete is not what sidewalks are made from.  That's just concrete.  What we are talking about is inspired design, excellent workmanship and timelessness.  These things can resonate for a long time.  We do this work because people need homes, homes need floors, and there is nothing on Earth more durable or less likely to go out of style than polished concrete flooring.  

Back to the butterfly effect of good design.  In his brilliant biography of Steve Jobs, Walter Isaacson made the connection between the homes built in what would later be silicon valley and renaissance of computer science there.  Eichler Homes created the backdrop for a cohort that would grow up to change the world and drive the American economy even after they died.  

Good workmanship inspires.  Every well built thing you have touched or seen has made it tougher for you to leave things half-assed.  I can assure you personally that if you focus on how well things are made long enough, you will become a compulsive "fixer".  You may well drive your spouse crazy by repairing things in hotel rooms and public spaces when you think no one is looking.  It is like a disease (albeit a very positive one). 

Timelessness is ironic.  The most "timeless" things surely age, they just do it in an artful way.  I have an old Harley Springer I like to ride when the weather gets warm.   The finish is coming off the cooling fins of the motor.  I could pull the motor and have the cases chromed or powder-coated, but I know she just wouldn't be the same.  So I have grown to love her flaky plating.    

Similarly, concrete will take on stains and chips from abuse that linoleum will not.  However, old masonry becomes charming while more "durable" surfaces do not.  It is the difference between patina and age.  

So, as you go about your work this week think about what you may be leaving behind.  How are you inspiring people you encounter?  What will your artifacts say to our descendants?  Does it matter?  It must!