Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Resistance Is Futile

Once upon a time, a child was born. This child was like any other child, laughing when happy and crying when sad or excessively gassy. Years passed and the child grew up and acquired knowledge, eventually deciding to pursue a degree in architecture. The child, now an adult, graduated from an accredited university, entered the world and found a job. After several years of satisfactory work, the former child was given the job of designing a building for the phone company. Here are the results:

The result is one of the most ghastly buildings in the city. It's so cold and devoid of any charm that I have to remind myself that it was conceived of by a human being who had human emotions and not some random robot who taught itself computer-aided design. To make matters worse, this building is on my block. Officially, it's called 120 Lenora (for that is its address although it stands squarely at the corner of 2nd & Lenora), but is alternately known as the Qwest Building (not to be confused with the Qwest Plaza Building at 1600 7th Ave. in downtown). Its 14 floors house a whole array of phone equipment. I can understand the functional nature of the building's design; it contains mostly electronic phone-switching guts and only a few people to do the machines' bidding. But does it have to be reduced to sheer functionality? Does it have to be so lacking in appeal? Does it have to look like a Borg ship made of bricks? Do we have a choice? No - and resistance is futile, by the way.

Seriously, it looks poised to blast off from its moorings to go assimilate parts of the galaxy. There is no stranger building in Belltown or elsewhere in Seattle than the Qwest Building. It's just there - and that's about it. It is tremendously ugly, but it doesn't matter. Beauty is not part of its directive.

Another item worthy of note is that this building also displays some of the worst public art of all time - brick murals of Seattle sights and history. I've been walking past these street-level panels for 19 years now and I'm constantly surprised at how ultra-dreadful they are. You can be damn sure that I'll write a lot about them in the future.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Which brings me to my First Tip when it comes to Teaching An Older Child the Alphabet and English Words:
Do not assume that an older adopted child is the
same as an ESL (English as a Second Language) Child.
You can move to next challenge after that and can face other grammatical
problems. It appears, at least for now, that that language is English.

My web site - phuong phap hoc tieng anh hieu qua