Dudette Shreds in London

I’m always surprised when someone says, “You guys are the quintessential southern California firm.” I don’t think of us this way. I like to think we’re a serious, intelligent, and dedicated crew, not pot smoking surf dudes and dudettes. We don’t help this reputation with our watermelon, spearmint, and butter yellow walls. And then there is the skateboard incident. Several years ago, Noreen was a judge for the British Design and Art Director’s competition. This is one of the most prestigious shows in the world and the judging is rigorous. The judges are pulled from around the world. I did it a couple of years after her, and slept for a week when I returned home.

Someone submitted a skateboard to the competition and Noreen’s jury was trying to decide if it should be included. “We need to ride it,” she said. This makes perfect sense to me. It might look good, but what if it doesn’t work. Unfortunately, this behavior is unheard of in polite British society. So Noreen’s ride around the room on the board drew gasps and shock. Perhaps the southern California idea isn’t wrong.

This week, I made two skateboard decks for AIGA Hampton Roads’ Shred show. I’m happy to do it and help out a great chapter. Of course, since I’m super square, my solutions are the dorkiest in the group. But, that’s good too. It makes everyone else look incredibly hip.

Paris is Burning

If you've seen the movie 2012, don't. I don't expect a movie about the entire world collapsing due to crustal displacement to be very realistic, but this one pushed it beyond the limit. I spent the entire movie saying, "Yeah, right," or "You have got to be joking." The biggest tragedy is when a Citroén DS is destroyed. Of course, the director of the Louvre drives a vintage Citroen DS. Don't all French people? And the British only drive Jaguars. See, "Yeah, right."

The Citroén DS is a sublime piece of sculpture. The first model was released in 1955. Production ceased in 1975. For those who appreciate an intellectual, rather than aesthetic, point of view, Roland Barthes wrote about the Citroén in 1957. In response to its showing at the Paris Auto Show, Barthes writes, "The object here is totally prostituted, appropriated: originating from the heaven of Metropolis, the Goddess is in a quarter of an hour mediatized, actualizing through this exorcism the very essence of petit-bourgeois advancement." To which I respond, "Yeah? Of course."