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Steven, I was definitely smarter back then.

I did not post on that thread.

(You all can decide whether those two statements go together or not.)


beta, did not get to hunger.

Sep 30, 13 1:25 pm

From what I've discovered, the history of the Archinect before the great purge of 2003/2004 is only accessible on the wayback machine, and unfortunately what exists of the forum from "pimpin'" days is only front-page.


I am attempting to piece together a collective history of the Archinect in order to understand the current state of ruination within the forum.  The goal is to pinpoint the exact moments of both rise and decline - the latter of which I am suspecting happened when this site became "legitimized."  At first this project will revolve around bringing forth old threads to be ogled and commented on by the Constantinople of the former great empire, with hopes of gaining greater insight and visibility for my project.  Then it shall eventually spin off into a rarely updated and highly obscure blog highlighting crucial moments in the Archinect history.

Sep 30, 13 2:30 pm

Don't tamper with the Old Ones. You have no idea what you might unleash. 

Sep 30, 13 2:38 pm

donna, your post hit the top of page 1,000.  congrats.  46 more posts to go.

archinect is in it's prime.  there was never a decline, just constant evolution.  sometimes we fear change, but change isn't bad.

if you want to see when things went from somewhat optimistic with inside jokes and such, to more pessimism and cynicism, i would predict that coincided with the fall of bear sterns and lehman brothers.  that's because, as an outlet for the people involved in the profession of architecture, this forum will take the general tone of the aggregate profession.  also, it got worse when i started posting.  then it got lots worse when observant started posting.

Sep 30, 13 2:53 pm

My Dearest Miles and miles and miles...  unless you are willing to divulge your activities on The Archinect prior to your current nomme de plume, I shall ignore your warning.


The first of my efforts of resurrection is The Archinect user the Garpike.  This user gained mythical status once it obtained the form of a chimera, but I have yet to find substantial evidence of any great prophetic wisdom or forum contribution for a rightful place in the pantheon of The Archinect.

Sep 30, 13 3:04 pm
Sarah Hamilton
I thought Garpike was more like a mascot.

And I agree that the forum is a reflection of the mood
Sep 30, 13 6:07 pm
Sarah Hamilton
Damnit. I accidentally hit post, and you can't edit from the phone. As I was saying....

...of the profession. Before the crash, we were posting about our shoes, and other "I'm so bored of drawing bathrooms and cleaning up redlines" sort of amusement posts. It was light, and the biggest controversies were 3Dh and mdlr/tumbles cyber, um, tumbling.
Sep 30, 13 6:12 pm

People got too worried to be weirdly interesting. Shit-stirring role went from garwondler to observant, with a few exceptions.

It's a bit like the 1950's in here sometimes.

Serious times make for serious people. Wonder what it will take to get out the other side again.
Sep 30, 13 6:25 pm

^ How would you know what the 50's were like?

Especially on the internet? LOL

... 41

Sep 30, 13 6:45 pm

also, it got worse when i started posting.  then it got lots worse when observant started posting.

First, there's a thread about bitterness that was meant to take this kind of stuff out of the front yard, as the willster once called called it, and move it elsewhere.  That was very astute of Nam to suggest that, and another member, gruen, took up the task of creating that thread.

Curt, the inputs into shaping your perceptions of life are 180 degrees from mine.  "Modern Family" isn't the baseline for a lot of people, and pandering to that sort of stuff is optional.  You detest stereotyping and anything that is not PC, typical of those in homogenized America spanning from the Upper Midwest to the Pacific Northwest, since the former populated the latter.  I was once living in an apartment complex and these girls were moving out of a unit.  I asked them where they were going.  "Closer to the university."  They told me they were PhD students in social psychology.  I asked them if that was the branch of psychology that dealt with stereotyping, studying group behavior, and making inferences.  They beamed in that I was correct.  I would have loved to have given them a research topic.  Get a bunch of college women majoring in business.  Ask a cross section of society to scale them on appearance, much like on "Dancing with the Stars" or in a beauty pageant.  Then, test the correlation back to the discipline within business to see if the higher scoring ones are in marketing, management, and international business, and if the lower scoring ones are in finance, accounting, and MIS.  I'd bet you dollars to donuts that this would be positively correlated.  Jokes about good-looking  college girls and the marketing major are ubiquitous.  I didn't invent that wheel.

Note that I also tell people on here who inquire to major in architecture if they really want to, when it has been a lifelong passion and not a newfangled whim.  You are actually more negative about it.  I think it's a draw - the positives outweigh the negatives.  You get to do interesting work, use all parts of your brain, and earn a middle class salary and above once seasoned.  You seem to have a house in BBQ-town and a dog to walk, so you must be doing ok.  The negatives are the eccentricity, egos, lack of collegiality, and lack of uniformity in education and licensing requirements.  For physicians, med school is a must.  So there you have it.  Assign your weighted values and make a decision.  Also, I see very few people here advise people about the scholastic, internship, and exam process, other than make snide comments like "get out while you can."

Shit-stirring role went from garwondler to observant, with a few exceptions.  It's a bit like the 1950's in here sometimes.

The 1950s are still here, will.  People are pretending and putting on veneers and facades.  There are people who will never break bread together.  Also, if you look at the garbage looming in Washington DC threatening a government shutdown, you can see that ... ahem ... one party is still firmly entrenched in the 1950s.  You know - "the more things change, the more they stay the same."

You've got your front yard back ...

Sep 30, 13 6:57 pm
Sarah Hamilton
So a student's mother made the best chicken biryani for us last Saturday. It had potatoes in it, and wasn't overly cardomany/perfumey. Since we didn't eat it all, I wish I had brought it home. Dang.

Since a student brought me chai, I tried to get a Vietnamese kid to bring me his tea. He wasn't sure what that would be, and decided it must be jasmine tea. Hope he comes through. I love jasmine tea.

Maybe I just like tea.

Or food.
Sep 30, 13 7:05 pm

Sarah, we should reserve the 50,000th post for you.  Make it about tasty food.

Sep 30, 13 7:21 pm

Ya tampering with this old dog...might get you bitten.  I was looking at Miles Dad's work today and thinking wonder if on of his vacation beach houses may have been the reason I stuck it out with Architecture.  I recall my  college adviser saying to me you should  do some more reading about architecture.....My thoughts....hum...had my head in every architecture magazine since I was 18   and at the time I was in my  middle 20's. Having had the opportunity to start working in an office at 18, they were always there, it was my job to put them back in order once a week after everyone else pillaged thru them.  Think it was when I first saw Miles Dad's work.  I said I want to do wild shit like that. Years later I discovered I had been associated with  three of Bruce Goff's students.  I said again I want to do wild shit like that.  I don't think all this bantering gets me any closer to doing wild shit like theirs.  There are a lot of people stuck in the muck of life. You know fighting with design issues like how the hell did the building column end up in the side wall of a walk in freezer.  My best one was in Boston in the Prudential Center.  Our firm was hired by the USPS to  go look at a site in the Prude...because the USPS wanted to move the post office out of the basement because they were looking at  making post offices more like  retail stores. So we head up there is is a couple of hour drive, arrive, find the Developers Project Manager, he takes us to the space to be designed.  In the middle of the space is a sizable room, we open the door and it is filled with the biggest electrical conduit  I have ever laid eyes on.  Our job is to field measure the space so we can go back to the office and do the fit out.  Before we leave we stop in and visit with the Project Manager.  He shows us the drawings and they don't show  the room with the conduit.  I say what about the room with the conduit. He  says oh it will all be moved, and I'm thinking  this is the electrical core of the building.  So we go back to the office and we tell the boss what we encountered.  He checks with the Post Office and they say  if it isn't shown in the plans then they are moving it.  My boss being the smart one says, well we will prepare drawings based on the fact that it is being moved. However if we end up doing a redraw because it is to remain then we need to be paid for that work as well.  USPS agrees, so off we go to designing by using the "Postal Standards - Kit of Parts."  Crank out one solution with complete working drawings, only to hear back from the USPS.  We have to work the Electrical Conduit into our design.  We try but nothing is working.  The USPS is under the gun cause the Post Masters Convention is to be in Bean Town in a couple of months.  Eventually the project dies, because it can't be done in time for  Convention, and well they have decided they need to  locate a better site in the building.   No one was ever going to move all that power, no one ever had an intention of moving the power.  Door must have been locked when Benjamin Thompson's office  did the field survey work.  So the moral of the story is, "Look inside every door when your doing a field survey."

Sep 30, 13 7:35 pm
Sarah Hamilton
I only worked at a firm for 3 years before the layoff. I don't think I have any cool stories like that. I DID, however, do all the addition/remodel drawings for a local, prominent funeral home. Even convinced the structural to NOT put a post in the center of the octagonal flower shop, and instead, hold up the ceiling with hidden sloped beams in a doubled ceiling. Then, they put the project on hold, and the firm laid me off. The buildings is built now, and I give it a big middle finger every time I drive by.
Sep 30, 13 8:08 pm

lol sarah

@ miles, i mean in a william whyte mythic grey men sort of way. lots of humbuggery going on, which is not remotely as interesting as buggery at all.

the whole world is convinced conformity is the way forward and playing it safe is probably all for the best.  I notice it in our interns and my students too.  So serious, so safe, so worried. It is hard to be creative, or even interesting in this economy because risk taking is riskier than it has ever been. 

Architects are at least beginning to see beyond the design side of things and picking up on real social issues again, which is brilliant, but the solutions being proposed are seldom risky, seldom interesting, and really are leading to a big pablum life for everyone that is a bit unsettling. Building a culture of creativity in the midst of all this is going to be a challenge. Developing big ideas is even harder.  But more necessary than ever. 

Maybe Dylan can write something about the times that will make alright.

Sep 30, 13 9:39 pm

Oh, Sarah, that last sentence made me smile ruefully.  There are several buildings in my town that I flip off when I drive by.

Achinect changed when the profession changed when the economy changed.  Not that is isn't always changing anyway, but we used to have lots of people posting from the office, confident they would not get fired because they were desperately needed due to how much work was going on.  A 360d. flipflop in the employment world happened in 2008, to pretty much everyone - it was the beginning of the end of my partnership, for sure (I'm still best friends with my former partner, we just stopped *working* together).

I'm gonna go look at MIles' dad's work.  I have a suspicion I will recognize it.

Sep 30, 13 9:40 pm

Ah ha, yes yes yes yes yes.  The Gates of the Grove synagogue.  It's beautiful, and it's one my boss and I looked at closely when we were designing an addition to a Norman Rice synagogue in Philly.  We also cited the wooden temples demolished in Eastern Europe as precedents in our design.  Sadly, the project never went forward.


Awesome work, Miles' dad!

Sep 30, 13 10:04 pm

^ My father spent 2 years trying to get that project. He was sick of luxury residential clients who over the years had gone from avant-garde film directors and musicians to crass garmentos, developers and social climbers. So when he heard about the synagogue project he tried everything he knew to get the commission.

He approached the board repeatedly with various design concepts. He met with all of the board members independently to feel out their concerns and positions. He identified all of the various powers involved including wealthy donors to the center - some of whom were previous clients - and approached them for support.

Nothing worked. The board looked at him as the guy who designed houses for rich people and said 'what do you know about spirituality?'.

Finally my father offered to do the project for no fee. The members of the board of the Jewish Center looked at each other and said, "No fee - what have we got to lose?"

Sep 30, 13 11:12 pm


I see that the project was awarded at both the national and state level.  The serrated major volumes are strong and give it a unique feel.  The interior detailing, on the micro level, with indentations, lattice type projections, and other manipulations, in addition to the windowed clerestories, make it a serene and interesting space.  It's always "easier" to worship in a space that is open and windowed rather than one that feels cloistered and foreboding.  Very cool.

Clinging to historical styles has left us with a lot of worship spaces that don't breathe well or make the congregation feel small, but make a majestic statement.

A lot of students who adhere to a faith often try to do something related to their faith for a final project, but when the rubber hits the road, it's a lot harder to pull off because they experiment with concepts more than for other typologies because of the statement they might be making.

Garmentos!  The garment district in L.A. has some colorful personalities in its ranks. 

Oct 1, 13 12:25 am

wow thats an amazing decision. a great project too.

Oct 1, 13 12:26 am
Sarah Hamilton
Wait, until I clicked the link Miles posted, I thought you guys were all talking about FLW's synagogue in Philly, and this was all referencing some inside joke that I missed somehow. But that CLEARLY is not FLW, and it does say Jaffe, so I'm left wondering, is this for real?
Oct 1, 13 7:56 am

School is paying for the AIA membership.

Oct 1, 13 2:45 pm

That's nice, Orhan!

Sarah, Norman Jaffe is real and so is the synagogue.  It's not the FLW one in Philly, it's in New York.

Miles, that story makes me sick to my stomach.  Having to work for free just to get people to accept something of such beauty.

Oct 1, 13 3:02 pm
Sarah Hamilton
New question: I want my school district to take me seriously as an expert in my subjects (graphic design and animation). I currently have a prof. degree in architecture. Can you even GET a masters in graphic design or animation? Can you skip masters and go straight to doctorate? Should I get a masters in Education instead? I'd hate that. God, I would hate that. Education education is such crap.

Oct 1, 13 3:22 pm

Be an autodidactic. Your degree should be impressive enough.

Oct 1, 13 4:08 pm
What you have is definitely enough Sarah. Better to spend your time in practice.

Somehow I wouldn't count on anything but an education degree holding any weight.
Oct 1, 13 6:42 pm

Donna, the humor is when you intone it with the a Jewish accent.

"No fee - what have we got to lose?"

The moral is that money can't really buy anything good. They could have paid a fortune in fees and ended up with crap. Instead they paid nothing and got a magnificent building that is widely recognized and admired. That kind of care and effort comes form the heart, not the checkbook.

It also shows just how sick my father was of working for the rich, many of whom failed to pay anyway.

Oct 1, 13 8:55 pm

the humor is when you intone it with the a Jewish accent.

Thinking: "for you, and only for you ... "  Love this kind of stuff.   It's all good.

Oct 1, 13 9:04 pm

Is this news or an infomercial?  Such a weird addition to Archinect top page.

Oct 1, 13 9:18 pm

One doesn't even have to take a second look to know that's a Colorado custom megahouse.  Whether in the suburbs of Denver high enough to be studded with evergreens, or up in the mountain ski towns, that's what the affluent typically request and get.  That vernacular is very common, but they can be nice.  Probably what many CU-Denver M.Arch. grads wind up doing.

Oct 1, 13 9:24 pm

Gah, total infomercial.  Weird.

Oct 1, 13 9:28 pm

Many websites for either the federal or individual state run health exchanges crashed today as they were glutted with interest, according to the news.

Oct 1, 13 9:39 pm

I suppose that explains the "sponsored" tag? night all...

Oct 1, 13 10:33 pm

I am so mad.  I AM SO MAD. I read a blog today that said lefties are "shitting their pants with rage" and that is very near to what I feel. It's broken.  Everything about our society is broken.  My neighborhood was redistricted into a gerrymandered Republican zone and my rep is a COMPLETE IDIOT supported by the rural hicks to the north of me. In my state the majority of votes were cast for Dems, but the 9 districts are held by SEVEN Rs and only 2 Dems, due to gerrymandering.

It's the same reason I hate "professional" sports: the only values it teaches are win at all costs. And screw whoever gets hurt in the process. This is the message our politicians, sports stars, musical acts, advertising, and every so-called "adult" in our society is teaching: win, no matter what.  If you lose due to someone else cheating, that's your own damn fault for not cheating too.  

The Urban Archipelago is totally where my brain is right now.  Dumb uneducated country hicks who cling to god-n-guns are ruining the opportunities in our society for anyone not like them to succeed, and they claim Jesus loves them for doing it! Hell, they're ruining the ability for us to HAVE a society because they won't deign to be near anyone not like them.  Live in a city, and you learn that you have to be tolerant of ALL kinds of people.  Live amongst a bunch of dumb ignorant sheep fuckers and you start to think sheep fucking is the norm. The country is a bunch of sheepfuckers surrounding and holding hostage the people who are actually curious, educated, reflective, and tolerant.  And they won't let us tax ourselves to improve things for EVERYONE, and use the words liberal and progressive as epithets, as if it's a bad thing to want to improve the world or to help others!

Fuck them, fuck them.  Let the rural population flood, burn, dry out, get sucked up in a tornado and see how quick they run to the godless liberals to bail them out. But ask a so-called Christian family values voter to pay a few pennies to make sure a kindergartener can get a decent meal at a free school and they accuse you of being a thief and a moocher.

I'm done. I'm done. I'm so angry and so disheartened and somehow still at age 46 can't believe humans can be as awful, heartless, callous, willfully ignorant as every teabagger is, time and again.

Oct 1, 13 10:37 pm
Sarah Hamilton
Damn, Donna, that was blanketed. Hope you aren't planning to run for office anytime soon. I can see the anti-Donna signs now:

Donna thinks you're a sheepfucker.
Sinking family values; Donna Sink.
Oct 1, 13 10:51 pm

Yes, I do think rural uneducated people are sheepfuckers.  I'll stop believing it when they stop fucking sheep.


(This is a reference to an old joke, if you don't know.  One that Jerry Lewis told, I think, off the record? About how you can build a great barn and the villagers will give you the nickname John the Barnbuilder, you can heal a sick horse and the villagers will call you Lisa the Horse Healer, and if you fuck one sheep…)

(And I'll also point out that my family is generations of rural pig farmers, but back then it wasn't as possible or necessary to get an education.  These days there is no excuse for willful ignorance.)

Oct 1, 13 10:57 pm

Donna, you're 100% on the money. These fuckers can goat themselves. Sheep fuckers is the least bad I could say about these clowns.

Oct 1, 13 11:27 pm
Actually since I live in Indiana they would more appropriately be termed pigfuckers.
Oct 2, 13 5:51 am

WoW.....what a rip!

Oct 2, 13 9:34 am

Pardon me.

I have to step out and settle a disagreement between a subcontractor and the cleaning lady for a client.  Seems like some wood pallets ended up in the wrong dumpster and no one wants to take ownership.  Now is what Architecture is really about.

Oct 2, 13 9:41 am

wow donna

There are lots of intelligent folk in rural usa.  I am certain only a handful are doing weird things with their livestock. 

It isn't ignorance, its lack of compassion, and possibly fear, that drives the republican pseudo libertarian nonsense.  OK some ignorance too, as in not understanding that the affordable care act is obama-care and what-not. 

anyway, good luck with the funny farm.

Oct 2, 13 10:37 am

sometimes it's ignorance.  a lot of people really do feel sympathy for the poor or people who can't get jobs/income for whatever reason, but they honestly think there is a church/NGO there to help them.  that really is the case in most rural areas.  if someone is downtrodden, you can't really ignore them.  you know them, you know their parents, you know the name of the dog they had when you were kids, so there is genuine shame if you don't help them.  in those areas, government intrusion into the way things work can actually make things worse.

if you live in an area with people, a lot of problems can just be ignored because there is a certain anonymity.  government regulation is designed to help those people, not the people who already have support networks.  if you don't understand those people exist, or if you really think everyone on welfare is a lazy cheat, it's probably more ignorance than lack of compassion.

just sort of a theory i have, i could actually be pretty far off.

my grandpa had cows.  i'm fairly certain there was never any sexual relationships involved with the livestock.

Oct 2, 13 11:22 am

If it's not ignorance then it's plain old meanness. Actual quote from my congresswoman's FB page last night, made by one of her constituents: "I don't want to have to subsidize other people's healthcare".  So this is a person who is a mean, hateful, selfish, greedy assclown. 

Alternatively, this person doesn't understand that we ALL already subsidize each other, even for things we don't want to: roads, police, etc. AND unjust wars AND healthcare whenever someone who can't pay shows up at an emergency room, because that is how a society works. So this person is ignorant.

If this person is also rural, then this person is probably BOTH mean and ignorant, because he either 1. doesn't know or 2. doesn't care or 3. both that we city people pay out more in taxes than we get back in subsidies, while the rural counties take more.  This is a widely documented phenomenon, here is just one state example.

Obviously I'm blanketing, obviously I'm generalizing. There are smart, generous, talented rural folk and there are asswipe ignorant city people. But ON THE WHOLE, cities vote in ways that lean toward being helpful to other people and improving everyone's opportunities, while rural counties vote selfishly and for keeping things backwards.

As has been pointed out elsewhere, though, it's a generational problem.  For the most part, kids who grow up rurally are moving into cities. In 25 years the country's makeup is going to look very different, if we haven't destroyed ourselves by then.

Oct 2, 13 12:21 pm

Quote by a professor, who was a great teacher but an insecure jerk off-screen, teaching an introductory course in taxation in u.g.:

"Taxation is the price we pay for a well-functioning society."

The ACA will mean an incremental hike of sorts over the short-, or long-term, for some or most people.  Incremental often means a little, and not a lot.  And if it is tiered and the bigger hikes are reserved the rich, then "c'est la vie."  The Leona Helmsleys of the world are getting their just returns on their karma for comments like 'taxes are for the little people.' The economy will adjust, by moving other levers up and down, as it did with Social Security.

Post 50,000 is near and is reserved for Sarah who will be posting a recipe for good food, and that could even be for a cake with green icing in my book.

Oct 2, 13 12:34 pm

Donna's sentiment is exactly why I gave up doing planning. That ignorance combined with the willful manipulation of codes and ordinances to ensure cities never change. Various "Good Ol' Boys" social clubs, Chamber of Commerce and certain professional organizations spend so much time rigging local politics.

Most cities and towns are so destroyed that they're beyond repair. They will never have the laws or tax base to lead to crucial development or infrastructure to drag them out of the impending poverty they face.

Oct 2, 13 1:05 pm

Bottom line is greed. Greed makes people stupid, mean and fearful - afraid they are going to lose something. This is the basis for every problem we face today from environmental destruction to war to health care and education.  

Oct 2, 13 1:23 pm

i think this is an example of the extreme case.  public services cost money.  that money has to come from somewhere.

there are conservatives who think they are an island.  nobody should have to pay for them, and they shouldn't have to pay for anyone else.  these are typically people who have the means to pay others to take care of them when needed.  they don't understand that shit happens sometimes.  they really think a homeless person just has to lift themselves up by the bootstraps and get one of those well paying manufacturing jobs that are so common here.  they believe the people working 40 hours a week but still need wic or other assistance are just not working hard enough.

most of us know that when this person goes to the doctor, there is a lot of money dumped into infrastructure, equipment, research, and education so that doctor can keep them healthy.  most of those are funded in part by government.  the government is helping to keep that conservative healthy, because that's what government does.

they don't want harm to come to others.  it's not that they're mean.  they're just so dumb, and have this fairly tale so ingrained into their psyche, that they can't incorporate the real-world into their ideology, so they just pretend it away.  i think it's easier to keep this fairy tale alive in a rural area, because a lot of that infrastructure is out of sight and out of mind.  they don't need fire services on a daily basis, so they can ignore it until they need it.  they can ignore research into bypass surgery until they need the surgery themselves, in which case they're carted off to the city since rural areas aren't going to have the infrastructure required to keep them alive.  then they get home, and it's easy to say they were able to take care of themselves without other people giving them handouts, and just wish away all of the pesky real-life evidence to the contrary.

of course there are a lot of evil, mean, self-absorbed assholes too.  i just think it's more difficult to actually believe in this sort of conservative fairy tale in a populated environment, since you're confronted with the obvious need for community involvement more often.

Oct 2, 13 2:01 pm

Greed is bad.  Yet I live in a community of people - NONE of us are rich, just in the low- to mid-middle class, by American standards - who would gladly give up a bit of what we have *if* it meant that every child had food, a secure home, healthcare, a good education, and equal opportunities in the world. Healthy, happy children become happy, productive adults, and *that* is the society we want to live in.

Instead we get closure of SNAP, CHiP, WIC, Head Start, school therapy et al programs and a lot of blame and anger from people who call users of those programs "moochers".  The outcome of this government shutdown is that I'm giving up and giving in to returning that anger: I'm done being nice to people who won't play fair.  Done.

Oct 2, 13 2:02 pm
Sarah Hamilton

Why thank you, Observant.  I promise to come through for you!

Oct 2, 13 2:08 pm
Sarah Hamilton


Oct 2, 13 2:09 pm

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