If not now, maybe soon

“Seriously?” he asked me. Barely a teen, there was so much—conceptual or real—that he’d not seen or even dreamed of.

a bldg for then, if not soon“Well,” I admitted, “it is only a thought. An idea. I kind of figure that heaven will be something like this—that we’ll be able to create almost anything we want. So long as it holds to the laws of gravity and so forth.”

Our eyes caught, and we had the same scandalous thought.

“But,” I continued, “if it’s like ‘The Matrix,’ maybe we can bend the laws a little!”

“Yeah! Like I think, Dad, what I’m going to do is to practice all the parkour moves I want to do…”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah. Only…” and he started to walk away to pack his backpack for school, “I won’t ever get hurt and stuff.”

There was a smile on his face as though his hope were catching up to his dream—as much of a smile as he would allow himself when he made a remark that he wanted to linger on. He looked at me over his right shoulder as he walked to his bag. His smile was there. And when I watched him start to put his binder in his bag, his smile was still there.

His movements and steps were confident, deliberate, as though he finally felt his feet growing down to the ground.

photo: Bosque Urbano, by MAD Architects

IP

In a bold intellectual property rights grasp, Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities plans to send legislation to the Egyptian Parliament that will force others to share profits from the use of ancient and museum objects like the pyramid, the Times 122807woodsy.jpgreported today (“Egypt to copyright landmarks”).  Case in point: more people visit the pyramid-shaped Luxor Hotel in Las Vegas each year than the pyramids in Luxor, Egypt.  Egypt wants its cut.

photo: woodsy

Unfinished Gaudi

A writer on New York Moleskinecity mentions Broken Angel as one of the treasures of 082606passionchrist.jpgBrooklyn.  The owner of this building, a “self-taught” architect and painter, has added some interesting and intriguing quirks to the facade and interior.  However, Gothamist.com goes too far and calls it a tenement version of Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia.

Please.

Sagrada Familia is a work of ineffable sublimeness.  When I first saw it, in 1990, I was tripping through Spain by myself on a 17-day vacation from my job at Wiley.  In Barcelona, I was visiting a friend, Alejandro Par, whom I had as a camper at Camp Carolina for Boys five years earlier.

When I came across the nativity facade, which faces east and “is dedicated to the birth of Jesus and his life,” I was dumbstruck.  The larger-than-life image of Christ carrying his cross makes you feel as one witnessing the scene along the Via Dolorosa, watching him scrape the cobblestone pavement with that weight of deathly torture on his back.  You can feel the rough splinters of it digging into the same back that took the scourging only hours earlier.  The muscles strain, the sweat beads, the heart beats faster and faster.  In his eyes is a sadness of what must come and a mercy without end.

No wonder Gaudi could not finish the cathedral.  How could anyone ever finish telling that story?