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A riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma...

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    Is Nothing Sacred?

    Is Nothing Sacred?

    When a part of Notre Dame Cathedral burned, there was an instant, worldwide flood of money inundating a Catholic place of worship. And a national icon. And a place of romance. But more than that, Notre Dame is, by design and history, sacred. Would the Paris Opera House in flames evoke the gut-crushing pain of […]

    Rebuilding What We Never Made: Notre Dame

    Rebuilding What We Never Made: Notre Dame

    Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah. (Matthew 17:4) Those tabernacles were the best way that St. Peter could fully express his love of Jesus. But […]

    REPENT!

    REPENT!

    The end is near! We’re all gonna die! Life is an exclamation! This urgency has been fully framed by the New York Times reporter whose essay “The Coming Collapse” declared: “It is impossible for any doomed population to grasp how fragile the decayed financial, social and political system is on the eve of implosion.” We […]

    The Death of Control

    The Death of Control

    My wife has one unrelenting addiction: “Jeopardy!” If there is time, she will watch, and if I am there, I will sit through it. In his 35 years on the syndicated nightly show, Alex Trebek has become an icon. His hushed superiority, muffled humor, and obvious judgments of the players and the game are, now, […]

    I Am Not Karl Lagerfeld

    I Am Not Karl Lagerfeld

    A man who designed things died this week, but what ended was his central, lifelong design: himself. I design things every day, but I am completely clueless about my own design. Death imposes reflection on us, whether we like it or not. So when I see a person pass away who was virtually a cartoon of […]

    We Are Suddenly Surrounded By Dead Trees

    We Are Suddenly Surrounded By Dead Trees

    For many of us in America, “the holidays” means erecting a tree. Usually from life from some woods or its simulation from a box that we assemble. But in any event, almost always, the icon we erect in our living rooms is “really most sincerely dead.” But that tree is evanescently sparkling and alive for this […]

    Aaron Rodgers Failing at Family

    Aaron Rodgers Failing at Family

    I am not thrilled with the NFL. I also am not wild about Pop Warner/Youth Football, where little kids are yelled at by former failed players who coach them into running into each other before puberty sets in. Big time college ball is also pretty brutally dehumanizing. But I do deeply love football.  I was […]

    Who Are You When You Don't Win?

    Who Are You When You Don't Win?

    “He says he is winning all the time. Who are you when you don’t win?” – Doris Kearns Goodwin, speaking of President Trump Forget about politics. No trolling, snarking, self-righteousness allowed. Every one of us, in our youth, with every “A” on a paper, and every “D” on a test, felt either validated or outed […]

    The Canon That Crushed Richard Meier

    The Canon That Crushed Richard Meier

    Architect Richard Meier recently resigned as the leader of the business he created 50 years ago. He created stark white and glass High Modernist Masterpieces for all those years. He was the very model of a Modernist “Starchitect.” He was compelled to leave because he had been accused of disgusting behavior with women. Not unusual […]

    A Message From Jesus

    A Message From Jesus

    It had been a long night. Two hundred people in a room, some yelling, half walking out. Two hours of presentation, justification, recrimination. It was perhaps the 200th meeting in 30 years of trying to make things happen, with about a 50% success rate. At the advent of my career as an architect, I knew […]

    Failure

    Failure

    It is inevitable: some things sometimes do not work out. Who loves control more than an architect? I have been one of those for 40 years, with 800 things built. But we’ve started over 1,000. We, I, failed over 200 times to build what we were designing. Today, I lost the chance to work with […]

    The Undeserved Vacation: The New Sabbath

    The Undeserved Vacation: The New Sabbath

    Tis the season… “I am on vacation, away from my office, Email access is remote so I may not respond until my return.” We seem to need vacation.  My father had the month of August off, but we went near nowhere (once a drive to DC to see a friend along the way and see […]

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