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Saturday, February 6, 2010

Steve Jobs, Front Doors, Customers and my Dog

It's Saturday night again, what seems to be my most frequent go-to blogging night. My dog just farted in his sleep - it's a real doozie - I'm watching Band of Brothers (all 14 hrs) for about the 12th time. Lisa bought me the box set a few years back.

Steve Jobs, in a Times interview said last week -
“A defining quality of Apple has been design restraint,” says Paul Saffo, a technology forecaster and consultant in Silicon Valley.

Great products, according to Mr. Jobs, are triumphs of “taste.” And taste, he explains, is a byproduct of study, observation and being steeped in the culture of the past and present, of “trying to expose yourself to the best things humans have done and then bring those things into what you are doing.”

I agree, and have been saying something similar, although less articulated, for years.

Here's Laurie, Tony and Eva (hope I got the spelling right) checking out there mid-century pad earlier today. Started their house back in November, and finishing it up in late February. Mid-Century Ranch #2, following in the illustrious and hard to fill shoes of Erin and Greg.

It's a funky little abode with lots of personality and big views.

They chose a 3 light front door from a wide selections and offerings.

2 hrs outside the city sits a small little getaway with all the space and functionality and style and carefree potential anyone could really need.

Today, Saturday, James and I had 3 final walkthrus with the soon to be owners of the Cottages on Lake Ridge, outside of Narrowsburg, up above the old and drained Lucky Lake. James pointed out that these houses came in 4 weeks AHEAD of schedule, even though we are in the heat of winter, when things are triply difficult.

Cottage 24 has been one of our favorite designs and we have built iterations of it on several occasions - Cottage 2, Cottage 6, Cottage 18, Cottage 22 - and each time we keep coming up with ways to keep it real, keep it unique, because of all of the necessary ingredients critical to the integrity of our process - uniqueness of each individual home is paramount, integral, to the integrity of our efforts.

Mark, below, came up with his family from Queens, -his partner was skiing out west somewhere (must be nice!)- his final walk-thru also was scheduled and everything was pretty much finished and we hope to close on this home this coming Friday.

They got themselves one of our famous Dutch doors, that split in two.

And Susan, friend of Gayle at Cottage 15, friend of Bryce and Thom at Cottage 17. She selected the little brown cabin cottage on top of the hill. All my photos of the little cabin are back at the office, while here I sit in my sunken living room jousting off a flatulent and sleeping dog.
She went for the 9 light 2 panel front door, painted red. Lisa always hates when I take pictures where I show up in the glass, reflected.

For the first time in maybe my life, I got some sort of stomach bug that knocked me on my ass for a few days - literally didn't go to work, which I think may definitely be a first. And considering we are short handed in the office and loaded with a half dozen buildings going up, it was no time to be horizontal.

But all's good that ends well, and feeling better here on Saturday, found a new leash for Jake who keeps chewing through his leashes. It's not super easy finding a leash up here in the sticks, and when I finally found a shop in Narrowsburg that sold one, they didn't take credit cards so that sent me searching for an ATM.

3 more houses nearly finished, and I'll be posting numerous photos in the next week or so.


  1. Chuck: I hope your tum feels better today. I know your pup won't stop farting, so we won't go there - lol! I found your blog over the weekend and since I'm into traditional small builds started at the beginning and read through in between working and lugging wood. If I were closer to the start of my life - the Catskills Farm ethos sounds really good to me. I hear you too on what Steve Jobs has to say about design. I try to adhere to these principles in making my very traditional but striking bespoke quilts.
    I am fascinated by the concept of spray in soy product based insulation and will be looking for something like it in any further work I do on my 1820's New England tyle cape house - a layer of birch bark over the sheathing boards and then shingles nailed over top of that doesn't quite do it! Lots of voids and little holes. Any references I might look at online?
    Keep the faith, I sense a new social order on the way. We've finally seen that the emperor isn't wearing any clothes.

  2. gettin a little chubby arent u chuck.congrats on the family.Good for u on your work,It really looks nice.Bet u still stink at chess though.