Why is [almost] everyone in their twenties such a know-it-all? There is so much competition; so much "oh, I've done that, too," amongst my confidence-lacking (or over-confident) peers. Why can't young people, people my own age, just be cool and learn to listen to what others have to say once in a while? I have decided that it's much more enriching to work and hang with people that have a bit of experience and age under their belt. Or at least a bit of wisdom.
Fear surrounds and traps you.

Sketch: Fear surrounds and traps you.

Cleveland is very segregated. I've heard it said that (with respect to African-Americans and Caucasians) Cleveland is one of the most segregated cities in the United States.

In our city's history, as in the history of many other American cities, the people with money and power (white almost without exception) made it this way intentionally. Of course, it was all unspoken. But it was definitely intentional.

These days, in the year 2000, a time when it seems like we should be enlightened to some degree, a white person can't drive down Woodland Avenue without getting yelled at, and a black person can't drive through Little Italy without fear of verbal or physical abuse.

This city is so segregated, and I HATE it. My wife and I live near Shaker Square, in the city of Cleveland proper. The neighborhood is pretty mixed here. It has its rough edges, but it feels natural-- like things are the way they should be. People walk, people talk to each other. So many places in the city are not like this.

Everybody's afraid. Rich people are afraid to live next to poor people, white people are afraid to live next to black people. The fearful move out to the suburbs. The fearful become agressive. It's bullshit. The best neighborhoods in the world are a mix of everything and everyone. If people would educate themselves, and graduate to the level of "human," rather than living their lives ruled by knee-jerk reactions, instincts, and stereotypes (as animals do), this world, this city, this place would be much more pleasing to inhabit.

I don't like feeling fear in anyone's neighborhood. I don't like having to be on the defensive. But I don't make it a habit of abandoning a place just because I'm afraid-- that's not a good enough reason.

Okay, so I'm driving down Lake Road, on my way to a meeting downtown... As I pull up to a red light to stop, I look over and see a little blonde girl (probably 10 years old), hanging out of her daddy's Chevy Suburban, listening to Lynyrd Skynyrd and playing the meanest air-guitar I have ever seen. She notices me looking at her, and immediately gives me the universal hand gesture for "rock-on." The light turns green, and as I pull away I hear her shout, "you go, boy!"

You can't make this stuff up. Life is rich.

A few thoughts on the nature of the world wide web, because that's what I've been thinking about this morning.

The web, it's so... self-referential. I mean, it seems that most of what people want to talk about on the web is the web. Sure, there are plenty of diverse interests expressed in the chat rooms and message boards of the world, but the people who seem to use the web the most (as evidenced by their frequent blog updates and rigorous web projects) seem to focus most of their efforts on web-related stuff. We need to remember... it's about people. It's about living. It's about the things that connect us, both physically and spiritually. The internet is useless without these events we call "real-life."

It really seems that in Cleveland (the city in which I currently reside), and perhaps the majority of the midwest, that people are afraid of progress, of good design, or anything that is too risky... More on this later.
It's all about selling the magic...
With fuel prices up, I try to keep my operations below 2,000 RPM.
Sketch: Entry, Passage, Place

When you think about architecture, you think about entry, passage, and place.

Place. Does anyone really understand what place is anymore?

Hi. Welcome to the inside of my head.