Saturday, August 04, 2007

Started well

As I said earlier, home and happy. Quite oddly happy, somehow: I was in a great mood all week. I do definitely like Hamburg, it's a very nice city. It reminds me a lot of London (England): lots of brick and trees and broad streets, all of which are rare in Stuttgart because of its tight, steep valley setting.

Ingrid and I spent the first three days deciding on a strategy: enabling ourselves to "do the job" by redefining what the job is. We established a list of types of display system (freestanding display case, hanging on the walls, built into the walls etc), and decided on a system of presenting the necessary minimum of information for each of the exhibition's themes. I drew preliminary detail designs for most of the types of cases, while Ingrid tried desperately to get the curators to make some decisions. I think it's going to work out well, but will be very tight to finish this on schedule. Especially if the curators keep on farting about.

Too tired, more tomorrow. But before I go: Paul Graham writes well about stuff:
I have too much stuff. Most people in America do. In fact, the poorer people are, the more stuff they seem to have. Hardly anyone is so poor that they can't afford a front yard full of old cars. [...]

I first realized the worthlessness of stuff when I lived in Italy for a year. All I took with me was one large backpack of stuff. The rest of my stuff I left in my landlady's attic back in the US. And you know what? All I missed were some of the books. By the end of the year I couldn't even remember what else I had stored in that attic.

And yet when I got back I didn't discard so much as a box of it. Throw away a perfectly good rotary telephone? I might need that one day.
Go read.

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Blogger zhoen said...

Preaching to the choir here.

August 5, 2007 at 3:18:00 a.m. GMT+2  
Blogger Diana said...

I agree. Way too much stuff.

Glad work is looking promising, despite the farting around of the curators. (Now I have this image in my head of 3 aged people of undetermined gender in tweed, literally farting around. Not terribly attractive to any of the senses.)

August 5, 2007 at 2:58:00 p.m. GMT+2  
Blogger Pacian said...

The more stuff I have, the more evidence there is for future archaeologist to divine my existence.

August 5, 2007 at 5:38:00 p.m. GMT+2  
Blogger Udge said...

Pacian captures the ambiguity of stuff nicely: I collect, therefore I am.

Sorry about the image of the farting curators, Diana. If it helps, I wasn't thinking literally -- but now you've got me viewing it that way.

August 11, 2007 at 7:14:00 p.m. GMT+2  
Blogger Rob said...

Been to Hamburg once: loved it, want to go back.

I was thrilled to find the youth hostel is one ring road exit away from Billbrook, which reminds me of the Borchert short story. If you've never read Borchert, do: he is the spirit of postwar Hamburg encapsulated (probably why he committed suicide, when you consider what we did to it). Draussen vor der Tür is his masterpiece, though I've always been haunted by Billbrook.

August 17, 2007 at 6:41:00 a.m. GMT+2  
Blogger Udge said...

Rob: thanks for the tip, I hadn't heard of Borchert or Billbrook; wikipedia DE suggests that Billbrook would be pretty moving. I am very aware of the war here, in the oddly truncated buildings and occasional gaping holes in a row of buildings (still, like the NCP in London), and that the trees are all exactly sixty years old.

August 17, 2007 at 8:30:00 a.m. GMT+2  

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