episode 14: quomodo from the ashes
cloris archangeli, buttons down, sat tall in her sigurd ressel falcon chair, one leg tucked under, shoes off. the other women marveled, quietly, at her sheer confidence, the posture from hip to shoulder, and the manner of deploying her cigarette smoke, in purrs. decades lapsed into decades under the led lights, fresh from installation, illuminating white perforated girders, casting ellipse-shaped shadows on the oak-paneled ceiling. a masterwork of design, compressed into weeks, chinese-type efficiency combined with norwegian tact, vaulted olen ragnarsson’s already heady status amongst the dwell crowd. at the entrance a floor to ceiling mouth of 6mm tempered & smoked glass, two klieg lights pushed a tippy toe mike dent into frame, ifa okereke tucking her bare arm around his torso. local news had sprouted cable, which gave way to npr, and their beady crew of bone-wale corduroy and muji shoes. setting an example was the intention.
olen held a polaroid flash cube in his fist, tossed it like a kid, caught it, repeated the gesture. he’d found a box marked thomas at the back by the lip, hidden behind a flipped pieff sofa. inside the box, viewmaster, flash cubes, and a box of dixon ticonderoga hb. a rolled sleeping bag in the box cradled, like an embryo, boxcar trophies. the bronze plate read westchester county boxcar rally 3rd place. olen had no idea what a boxcar was, but his design-track-mind built one in a heartbeat: conical, pleated, vulcanized treads, lucite dials, nothing vestigial. he turned his head in degrees to check for spare wood from the shelving, none to be found. they’d rescued endless cords of old pine from the razing of the richardson mansion. it was rick pince’s abstract kowtow to dent’s dick first style of dealmaking. from across the room, near the newly painted typeface mural, a floor length vera wang dress carrying one tamar naser glided on clicquot bubbles towards the lap of mr. ragnarsson. “even your lettering bears nuance. what the fuck don’t you dabble in, o?” blushing with what blood he could muster, olen replied, “my mum spent hours with me drawing roman letters in ten x scale on masonite with a greasepencil.” like his lines, this anecdote was true. olen knew the intricacies of even the deft letter r, considered by typeface johns to be the pisa of latin script. the two sipped more bubbles, touched glasses. the tv crew departed.
renee emerged limping from beyond the stairs under the lip. “he waits until the grand finale to pull off his cosby-sweater-type anal and do me like lamar, like real reading rainbow,” as she straightened her a-line dkny. nobody in the room had a clue as to what it meant, even the speed-nosed mike dent. they smiled anyway, amused that the mission began with dick and was ending with dick. if quomodo was forced to sport a logo, it’d be an obelisk, pantone 12-0915, pale peach egyptian descended dick. darby mcclure could be heard from below the balustrade singing buzzcocks lyrics, a melody of hits. he followed up the flight, black tank, red ink. renee spun on a prima bare foot, despite her limp, “buzz-cock, cock, get me some veuve and don’t doddle.” dent had rebuked offers by ifa to cater the event, which wasn’t so much an event, but a surefire seance of design wanks spilling grande dame like st. ides at an ms-13 corner mourning. nobody needed to serve the punks of 42 bond, their game was taking.
dent put two feet on a pagwood, “it is in my egocentric interests to applaud your seamlessness. minimalism got its dick sucked here today, like it’d stuck it through a barn hole and met the sow instead. on this mission we came together not as friends, but collaborators, partisans in the struggle against our own instincts. we now barrel bare-chested towards the champions of convenience to thwart them. you know, a thought occurred to me, setting foot in the kitchen, seeing poor andy denemark’s unyielding phallus, it was this…to dig life you gotta go down straight up, and not for show, but for function. not the broadway, or the off-broad, but the coney show, hand-lettered freak theater, original english brickside adverts, ham radio shows into dead air. function. this structure, intended to take a khrushchev bullet, may now be used as a facility to combat the mediocre creation, and regrettably, perseverance of sub-standard human design. olen ragnarsson, stand up, take a look at your work. i’m certain that given enough plastique our man mcclure could make this into a mess you’d take pleasure in resurrecting, but that won’t happen. welcome to the new quomodo offices. tip your glasses, choose your weapons.
divad q. nead thanks stefan boublil & the apartment broadcast for the space, our anonymous art donor for the image and typeface, and finally the readers of theaptSERIAL for your attention and interest during this experiment. remember, “a house is a machine for living in.”