Living on a boat is glamorous, sure, but it is also like living in a floating sewer. All of the pipes and vents need cleaning or the circulatory system becomes a hothouse for a smell that should only exist on military submarines. As a consequence, we are dry docked, and getting a full cleaning. Maybe this type of work could be done in the water, but I also wanted to check to make sure that everything was working after the storm. We were off by a small percentage from our normal navigation, and I want to make sure that nothing critical was damaged. Plus, I like the feeling of having a completely tuned boat. While the ship is out of the water, however, I feel disquieted, as if I’m crossing into an unnatural world; ships should be in water, not up on stilts in a warehouse.
While homeless (which isn’t really true, I also have a beachfront house that doubles as a second studio), I’m taking the chance to go shopping for the holidays and to remember what it’s like to be adrift.
There was a time when I didn’t ever go home. Does this make sense? While I was interning, not yet working for myself, I would go from the studio to the club, to the shoot, to the performance, to the political action, to the breakfast meeting, to the client retreat, to the sample-maker, to the fitting, to the party, to the hospital, to the conference, to the airport, to the hotel, to the taxi, to the chateau, to the carriage, to the party, to the fitting, to the notions shop, to the cobbler, to the lace-maker, to the goldsmith, to the photo shoot, to the digital lab, to the print shop, to the ice cream store, to the boutique, to the bus stop (for a photo shoot), to the train station, to the luggage lost and found, to the pet store, to the client’s Brownstone, to the hotel, to the concert, to the coffee shop, to the bookstore, to the makeup counter, to the trim-tailor, to the crash-pad, to the tree house, to the back bar, to the early morning sunrise shoot, to the sanitarium, to the thrift store, to the prop house, to the garden supply shop, to the hardware store, to the paint shop, to the fabric supplier to the place that sold wooden propellers from WWII planes like the one used in Blow-up, to the museum to the opening, to the dinner party, to the silent auction, to the hair salon, to the after party, to the lingerie shop, to the take-out diner, to the watch-maker, to the overnight shipping depot, to the accessories maker, to the team that made cutom boxes, to the engraver, to the graphic designers, to different graphic designers, to the falafel shop, and back to the studio where I had just a few minutes to get ready to do it all over again.
One month I saw my apartment exactly three times, each visit for only a few hours, but I never felt more connected to the dream of design. The pulse of the city was not an abstraction, but was a result of my every action.
Walking around again today, I heard in my footsteps the echo of that drumbeat. Am I making the city move again? Or am I just in the way? I don’t care about anyone else's answer – I feel like I am making a difference, and right now, that’s all that counts.