19 November | 2012

Today I have been feeling like I’m not working hard enough, but I question why I would be feeling that way.  I work almost full time but still don’t bring in much per month.

Actually, so I just asked myself the question, “If you made more money would you feel like you were working harder?”  The answer was yes, so it may not be that I feel like I’m not working hard enough, just that I am not making enough money; I am not contributing enough to our household financially.  In all fairness, I contribute a lot of sweat equity.  Martin has always been and probably always will be the breadwinner, but I am the primary dog caretaker, dinner maker, house cleaner, and laundry-doer, and those things all count for something!

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 I have been thinking once again about my grad school applications and how I brand myself/present myself in them.  When I look at the other students’ work I find that there is this underlying idealistic, save the world, concept to them all.  The dichotomy I see between what is being built in the real world and what is being designed in schools is somewhat caused by this fascination with “save the world” architecture.

When architecture students create a hypothetical building skin that adapts to your body temperature, it is interesting but it’s obsolete to the real world.  Until some computer programmer from Google or a Mac nerd from Apple creates something useful to the average person, it isn’t going to go anywhere.  And so these students graduate with portfolios full of these idealistic projects and then end up working for a firm that designs normal things like office buildings, schools, or homes.

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How this all relates is that I feel not only in my own household (in a monetary sense) that I am not contributing enough, but also on a larger architectural scale.  What I do know though, is that I am being realistic in my career aspirations, the average person hires an architect or interior designer to design their home, not to save the world one rain barrel run-off collection system at a time.  Why isn’t that enough?  Why isn’t it enough for me to just want to design good homes?

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