Speaking of objects and our attachment to them, I’m excited to see that Helvetica director Gary Hustwit is making a new film about “the creativity at work behind everything from toothbrushes to tech gadgets.” Sounds like a natural extension of that ingenious first film.
If everything in our lives were afforded the design attention that my toothbrush has, we would sit in chairs that floated while tickling our troubled backs, have tables that yielded at our aching elbows while remaining firm on top, walk on floors that tingled like active sand, and sleep on pillows that would never allow our ears to flatten against our heads.
My favorite song*, Smog’s “To Be of Use,” summarizes my attitude perfectly:
Most of my fantasies
To be of use
To be of some hard
Like a spindle
Like a candle
Like a horseshow
Like a corkscrew
* See also Nick Drake, “Northern Sky.”