27 February, 2008

Independent Travel

I hate planning travel iteneraries, to me, it's the worst part of traveling. That's why I love traveling with others, all the fun of travel with less hassels. That said, Amsterdam will be my first time outside of Spain since I've been in Europe. I know, it's kind of sad, but at least I'm working on big plans for spring break. It can definitely be frustrating to search for plane tickets, hostels, train, etc. I'm just glad Cromie's helpin' me out with all of that. We're going to London first, and then Berlin and will be in each about 4 days. It's pretty exciting, but really all I can think of right now is... AMSTERDAM!


It's callin' my name. I can't wait... we're leaving in about 10 minutes and I just finished packing... in fact, I even made a datacard about it. What to pack... camera, sketchbook, ipod, SKATEBOARD... definitely the most important. I think eggl blogged about this before, but we've been skating alot at the park in Barcelona, but man am I excited to cruise Amsterdam. I was checking out the park online, and they have a massive bowl that looks awesome. Can't wait, but first I've gotta write one more blog and catch a plane. Probably more photo and video documentation to come.

craving a home cooked meal

My family is all about the food. We love to cook or find a new good restaurant. And I love it. I have a huge list of favorite meals that my mom and dad cook. And two distinct best meals of my life out to eat with my parents. It’s weeks like this past one that make me realize how much I miss that. I am longing for one of my favorite family meals. My dad’s salmon, or tuna, steak, massive pork chops cooked on a tiny grill at a Panther’s tailgate. My mom’s chicken and vegetable stew type thing, pot roast, homemade mashed potatoes. And appetizers… I miss appetizers. This week was a lot of quick-grab meals. Grilled cheese on the stove in the room, with or without turkey, pb&j, maybe some soup, mcdonalds, or a falafel pita, microwave food from nostrum, a coke and some chips from the supermarket. A few times I even forgot to eat, or just didn’t really have time. That’s what happens when the work piles up. Eighteen hours a day at the computer, walking away to eat something quick, then right back. I would love to sit down to a hot, home-cooked meal. The closest I’ve come recently was when a few of us decided we were stressed, tired, and it was time for a good meal. So we went to a place not too far from studio called Sukur. It was a nice place, cool ambiance, and good food. We split an awesome appetizer of warm pita with a mix plate of different Greek spreads, ordered drinks, and I got mushroom risotto. It reminded me a little of home, and was definitely the food highlight of the week. But it cost us. I don’t even like to think about it. That meal alone was probably more than all the combined quick-grabs the rest of the week. That made me miss home cooking even more. Where I could have gotten the same quality meal, not forked over my life savings at the end, and then rolled right upstairs full and content to throw on some sweat pants and watch a movie. Tough life.

Barca! Barca! Barca!

Sunday night I went to el partido de futbol... HOLY CRAP, IT WAS AWESOME! I had never been to a real soccer game before; there was so many people. Old, young, in-between; this was a drop everything you do and go type of thing in Barcelona, which is crazy cool.

B-rett and I didn't have tickets like the others, so as we are standing in line for tickets, some random Spanish guy comes up and starts speaking Spanish to us really fast about two tickets. He doesn't speak any English, he actually asked us if we spoke French... negative... but we managed to get two tickets out of him for a reasonable price considering we paid less than Adie and we were closer to the field. And he was a good scalper too if there is such a thing, because he walked us through the ticket gate with the tickets before he asked us for dinero. Kudos to B-rett for holding a conversation in Spanish with this guy... Dulce would be so proud ;)

Anyways, the game was so awesome and so much fun, and you could feel everyone's excitement for FC Barca. It was A-mazing. And we got to see all the big name guys, and the not so big name guys. Barca in action... so much fun to watch... it made me want to go play again. And we won 5-1 with Xavi and Messi's goals, and Eto'o's hat trick... NICE. As soon as it was over, I was ready to go again.

If you decide to go, watch out for the paper airplanes...

"ima come at you like red rover"

Last Saturday Johanna and I finally ventured out to the montjuic fountains to see the light show, and it definitely lived up to expectations. Everybody loves water for the most part, I know I do. Growing up on a lake, there is something about being near a body of water however large or small that I find comforting, peaceful, and relaxing. I could have sat and just watched this relatively simple combination of water, light, and music for hours. And I was not the only one. The plaza was packed out with locals and tourists alike, as I imagine it is for every single show. The transition of fountains across the multi-level plaza makes an incredible public space. It is really unlike any other area of Barcelona that I have encountered thus far, and the reason it works and is such as attraction…. water. Even when it’s not part of the light show, the area is still a public attraction and a beautiful space. Our studio project is situated on the water, it is surrounded by water. There is the opportunity to incorporate the water into our project in so many different and exciting ways, and I feel like we have yet to really explore those potentials. I guess it is still relatively early in the design phase. We are getting there, but have spent the majority of the time pooling research to help form our decisions. So as we move on to the next step and a more intense design phase I am looking forward to exploring the possibilities of our first waterfront project.


One thing I have liked about Europe so far is the amount of bakeries they have here, and how they arent overpriced for the most part. I think my favorite stop on the way to studio is the bakery to get breakfast. I can't help looking through their varietys of croissants and chocolate covered/filled things. Now if only they served cafe con leche...


I'm probably one of the few people who made peace with Form Z by the end of second year but its been a year and a half since I have used it so I plan on learning Rhino. I had glanced at the program before and tome it looked like a mixture between formz and autocad so I am hoping the transition to the program will not be too hard. In playing around with the program so far I have learned a few of the tools including rendering properties but it is such an enormous program it will probably take me awhile to learn all of what it has to offer.


So all of last night I was working on a datacard for monsieur Hecker and I wanted to incorporate an eye. I could have just yanked one off of the internet but I decided to go ahead and make my own....I searched online and found a good tutorial....after three hours of huffing and puffing and being frustrated I got it down...I incorporated it into a datacard and off I went...to bed....at 6am...BUT I CAN BUILD EYES NOW! The datacard will be sent to Hecker today so I'm kinda 'cited about it!
the color of the eye is supposed to be blue but just like with Lauren's buttons, the color changed...boo

Fine Dining

Best restaurants within 5 mins of studio

Oviso - 2 mins
pro: great combi del dia that includes soup and a second course, both of which change daily
con: not fast with large groups
Dionisos - 2 mins
pro: best pita falafel con hommous in Barcelona, only 3 euro
con: cant eat a pita falafel every day...you just cant
Vegetalia - 2 mins
pro: incredible homemade organic food, great homemade hummus, fresh mixed juices
con: typically costs around 10 euro with hummus, meal and juice
Belgious - 3 mins
pro: food and dessert crepes made fresh in front of you, many options for both
con: winter hours are terrible and its hit and miss if it will be open
Starbucks - 3 mins
pro: fast coffee that you know and love from home
con: the prices here...not the same as home
Safra 18 - 5 mins
pro: menu del dia that is two main courses, dessert, wine or water and bread for 9 euro
con: only available mon-fri 2-4:30, not a fast meal if you're in a hurry

Bring on the Flugggenhemenneiiehnnnn

Hola blog,

We are off to Amsterdam today and boy am I excited. I can't wait for 5 days of clean fun and whistling down the street to barbershop quartet tunes. hahahaha....cumon now! We're goin to AMSTERDAM.....

I'm definately excited about the architecture and touring the amazing city. I wanna see how the architecture interacts with the water and how Holland does it different.

I also want to see the Red Light District. You have to. It's one of those things. I think tonight our class might hit up club Vandersexxx....lol Just got remember that safeword.....

Wash Owt.

Barcelona Port Authority

The site for our project is on the northeast side of the Barcelona Port Authority which is close to Mare Magnum (mall) and La Rambla. The port is quite segregated from the city, which I do not really appreciate. I have discovered that the port is continuing its southwestern march, and I am wondering if the city is planning to have the port be completely visually separated from the touristic areas. Montjuic plays it role in this because its massiveness blocks most of the port when looking at it from say the Columbus statue. I appreciated the sight of it from a distance as I went to the mall for the first time because there is something aesthetically pleasing to me about industrial design and the idea of a mechanized area where there is a constant movement and distribution of imports and exports. I hope to utilize my favoritism of industrial design in a proactive way when designing the project. The port is a major contributor to Barcelona's economy, and it needs to be better approached as far as its publicity and integration within the city's environment.


This week has finally ended, though not gracefully. I just overslept for the second straight day, gotta find a louder alarm clock, maybe one that punches me in the face. I just havent been able to work all night here and then successfully plan to get back up after an hour or 2 nap. I did get here, however, in time to present the hybrid with my group and write this post, so I guess I'm gettin it done, haha.

So, what's really on my mind...TIGERS, HUGE BASKETBALL GAME TONIGHT!! Magical win number 20 comes tonight!! Come on Tigers, DANCE!

A Successful Failure

First review took place yesterday.
Interesting experience to say the least.

Rewind to Monday evening...
The group got going pretty well and had a really strong brainstorming session. We actually got excited about this project for the first time. We really worked well together and formulated a concept that related to time usage of different spaces and designing areas that overcome the time restrictions we found evident within the city. We come up with a frank plan that we like, with tons more ideas in our heads that we havent quite gotten onto paper. We go for our sketched idea because none of the other groups had really designed any similar ideas in the past and we wanted ours to be original (big mistake numero uno). We work with the Predator idea of night vision and focus on the hot spots of the city changing between day and night. We use our time research to come up with areas most densely used at different times.

Things that led me to believe our review was bound for failure...
I am sometimes an optimist...but laaate monday night...just not enough things had gone wrong. It was creepy...and nice? We finished around 5 and actually got about an hour of sleep which is completely unheard of for me before a review. We all meet back up at 8am and go to the university at 8 to print. The printing...went well...which is always suspicious for me haha because i dont think thats ever happened for me before. We get back to studio and easily find some white paper to mount the small maps on and some push pins.

Fast Forward to Crit
Our presentation went ok...we tried to explain our ideas. I dont think we succeeded...at all. Juan Carlos did not like, well, anything that we had done. He felt that we had done nothing at all since the last week. The datascape was still a total miss in his opinion. As well as the Frank plan. And the rest was old information in his opinion. Well, we did actually have reasoning behind our ideas. The hot spots on the datascape did actually directly relate to our site design ideas, although that did not seem to have been presented well enough. We wanted our whole focus, in fact, to be around these hot spots and to be able to create spaces that transformed in ways throughout the day to fulfill different purposes. For example, a park space within the site that had LED screens that were maps and information during the day, an maybe music video screens for an outdoor club in the park at night. We wanted this park to not have an "open" and a "closed" but more of a continual usage. Professor Hecker had some really interesting ideas about making the datascape a video, which we had really wanted to do all along, and to show the change of space use throughout the day, week, month, year (sounds like a TON of info!!!) but all in all, I think we want to try some element of that idea.

Final Feelings
Yesterday's review was pretty disappointing. I feel like we finally got really going in a direction we liked, and we tried to do a few of the things that were required in a little different, creative way. I dont think that was well received in most ways. We did get some feedback that we are going to work with but our general direction of thought seems pretty confused right now. Good thing we're going to the Netherlands today and we have plenty of time to clear our heads!

First Review Impressions

The first formal review went pretty well for us. We got some decent feedback and one of the critiques that really struck home for me was the need to really converse the conclusions that we made during our research. Especially for the timeline, I need to work on making an argument about the research rather than just throwing research out at people whenever I am trying to prove a point. I think the overall material that we presented to the Juan Carlos and Doug Hecker was appropriate, and it encompassed multiple factors of the past, present, and future that were appropriate to our site. We discussed the evolution of tourism, the city, temporary housing, and the more focused areas of the airport, port, and Montjuic. We as a group also need to work on a more graphic unity, but I feel like over time that can really be remedied. It will take some time to get to that point where our graphic levels and our way to identify ourselves as a whole is unified, but it is a necessary step to make.

Sleep? That's as handy as skiing and doing your taxes when you have to produce +400%

I think I am seriously on my 23rd wind. I have been awake for almost 48 hours and I feel absolutely no need to go to bed right now. After spending 23 hours in the studio Monday, minus class time and lunch time, I am damn tired of seeing the studio, smelling the studio, using the toilets in the studio, and climbing up and down the rickity stairs of the studio. And I'm pretty sure half of us have short fuses with other people in the studio with our malnutrition, lack of sleep and pretty much living with one another in a confined area... easy killers. And I'm also pretty sure, in my lack of sleep, that we all put in at least 400% to our datascapes, research, and analysis maps (unlike A&M), while a certain someone felt the need to only put in 50% with Clemson University. Ever feel like we are a moving target and the Spanish studio mafia is out to get us? For example, when we got in trouble for having our second invisible dance party in the studio... you know, the ONLY night A&M kids have ever been to the studio, and no one even mentioned the loudness to them???

Ok, enough ranting and raving. On a lighter note, during the end of my 17th wind today, Matt and I were downloading Photoshop onto my computer (which, by the way, hates me) and we had to restart my computer... My login password has been the same for years, and the particular word I use has been in my life for 8 years... and I can't login. Wrong password. This goes on for an hour, so I walk away from the computer, panicking about how I am going to finish my work for Wednesday. Mad panic. I email Doug. I email the 'rents. I email someone I pretty much promised I'd talk to later on that night, and I am not happy. I get done emailing from Matt's computer and get this brilliant idea to try one more time to login. Magically it works. I just can't spell my own password. It's okay. And then, later on, f inishing up some other work, we totally get locked in studio and have to phone Hecker. What are the chances?!

And, I totally woke up with this blog open, computer in lap, in my bed, about 2/3 of the way through class this morning. 23 winds must be all I 've got this week. Off to the Netherlands!

Anger !!!!!!!!!!!!!

I spent the last 30 minutes loading a video and it didn't work and all it said was... this is your code, bX-h59pth, send it to someone to help you solve this problem ...
i guess Ill just do it later....

the art of cooking

So when I came first to Barcelona I realized that there was no microwave. In America all my meals especially during weekdays relied on the microwave in some way shape or form. And to cook here has been hard especially since me and Puja are vegetarians’ things have been more difficult. The stoves at Resa (especially in our room) don’t like to stay on and if they run together they like to flip off and cut the electricity to our room, NOT FUN. Also to make any meal it takes at least ½ hour with the stove it is very slow. But I am still greatful to have it. I don’t think I could’ve survive here w/o a stove. today me and puja decided to take a break from work and we decided to make pizza. this was the first time both of us used a stove to make pizza and it turned out good. it was great!

did someone say data cards? SWEET! (describes these two hansom cards)

Lets talk about DATA CARDS! Now that I am not bombarded with so many, I am finding my new “theme” to be entertaining. The last two cards seemed to be a little more challenging to come up with a consumer product, but they still deal with currency and possibly bar codes. I chose the Passion Fruit juice bottle because I have bought so much of it since I found it here and it keeps me going. As for the washing machine in RESA….its self explanatory.


Had the first review today, it went pretty well. I could've been a lot more awake, a lot less hungry, and maybe more prepared on the speaking end of it, but all that considered, it was ok. We got some constructive feedback to help begin to distinguish among a mountain of research. For now, I honestly want to forget about the project for a few days, get some sleep, and come back fresher on it. Will post more later, with more capable brain.

Time is a matter of perspective

Unfortunately, with all the work that we've had to do, I think my perception is broken. I think I'm ready for a break from seeing the inside of studio. Not to mention, seeing everyone there at all hours of the day is messing with my perception of time. But that could also have something to do with the weird/nonexistant sleep schedule that I've been on.

It's actually kind of weird to go outside and have some fresh air...more sadness. Reviews didn't seem to go too badly, but that may have been partially because I was falling asleep too much to hear any of JC's talking. Funny thing, it's already two, and I'm still up. This habit is become old really fast. Oh well, at least reviews are done with for now and Amsterdam is tomorrow...well, today!!

In a way, I'm ready to "play hard"

Excited about learning about Rhino, I've used the program on a number of occasions without ever receiving and formal instruction. I wish that I would have paid more attention to the architectural language class that we had freshman year because some of the things said are hear and look up their meaning later, concerning rhino.

I do know about surface and solid modeling though and both are very stylistically different. I like the fact that you have a text command line at the bottom of the screen as one of the biggest problems with FormZ is it's limitability to get to functions quickly.

We are headed to Amsterdam in 4 hours and I'm very excited.

Here is a little image of the trouble we can get into in Amsterdam

Hybrids and Josh

So let’s talk about this hybrid project first: Thinking about focusing on the section of a building rather than from plan view is a really interesting way to see and design better spatial zones. When looking at the floor plates I begin to envision them as ribs. Today I looked at how the ribbing acted when extended past the wall barrier and also when they’re retracted in, making atrium spaces.
Topic 2 possible car package items: I really have been missing some reese cups ever since Bret gave some to Dulce. So I’m saying like a bag of those at least. Next, Taco Bell hot sauce packets!!! Mild, hot, and fire and 10 of each. You can easily provide the perfect compliment to any tasty treat. Some mack&cheese would be amazing seeing how we can only cook on 2 stove tops. But they don’t have any here so I’ve been thinking about cheesy goodness.
Topic 3 The weather in the Netherlands. Windy and light rain showers.
Topic 4 How BA does Josh look in this picture? Those thumbs in his pocket like that. Do you hear cover of El anyone.

26 February, 2008

I'm getting tired of this place

Anyone else tired of looking at this room? Thought so, me too. Ready to "play hard" in Amsterdam? Meeee toooo. Since I've only slept 2 of the last 36, wait, 37 hours I'm gonna make this short and sweet. Yet again, Juan Carlos was not able to stay for our review today and, yet again, we have to wait until next class to get his feedback. I think our group has a lot of room for improvement and we really need to up our production. Then again we are only 3 people so we can only be expected to produce 300% instead of 400%...right? All I know is I need this break and I am pumped to go to the Netherlands!!!

Travel Study 2 The Netherlands

First! You need to bring: Passport (+copy), Student ID, Readings, Sketchbooks + supplies, Camera, etc…

Wednesday February 27 BCN►AMS 15:10
Meeting Place and Time: 14:00 at the BCN Airport Transavia Counter Terminal B. Give yourself at least an hour to get to the airport!
Transavia flight HV5136 departure: 15:10 arrival: 17:30
*If you arrive ahead of me go ahead and get in line. You can check in with your passport. If you go to the counter in groups of 2-3 you will be seated together.
Check into:
Hotel des Arts, Rokin 154-156,1012 LE Amsterdam Tel: 00 31 20 6201558
Doug nearby at: 't Hotel Leliegracht 18, 1015 DE Amsterdam, Tel: 0031 20 422 27 41

Thursday February 28 Amsterdam
Meeting Place and Time: 09.00 start of tour at Hotel des Arts, Rokin Meet Anneke Bokern
followed b tram tram ride to the Eastern Docklands
09.30 Eastern Docklands
former docklands transformed into housing area -explanations about the three urban design concepts, city context etc.
10.00 Housing block The Whale (Frits van Dongen/de ArchitectenCie, 2001)
10.30 Walk across Borneo-Sporenburg
Urban plan by West 8 (1999)- patio houses mixed with megablocks
Housing projects by West 8, Claus & Kaan, Neutelings Riedijk, de architectengroep, de ArchitectenCie, MVRDV, Herman Hertzberger, Koen van Velsen u.v.a.
Bridges by West 8 (2000)
KNSM-Eiland + Java-Eiland (1995/1997)
Urban plan by Jo Coenen and Sjoerd Soeters
Housing projects by Diener & Diener, Hans Kollhoff and Christian Rapp, Wiel Arets, Kees Christiaanse Architecten
Tram ride to IJburg
12.00 IJburg
new housing district on 7 artificial islands in lake IJmeer - (to be completed in 2012)
Explanations about the history of the project, urban design concept etc.
self-built houses and apartment blocks Haveneiland and Rieteilanden
urban blocks with collective courtyards
Housing projects by a.o. Maccreanor Lavington, Bosch Architects, Architecten Cie., VMX Architects

13.00 lunch break

Tram ride back to the city centre
15.00 architecture centre Arcam (René van Zuuk, 2003)
blobby pavilion housing the local architecture centre -Interior visit
Walk along the waterfront
16.00 Housing block Silodam (MVRDV, 2002)
"stacked sea containers" with colourful façade in the old wood shipping harbour
17.00 end of tour return to hotel
Case Study: Silodam (MVRDV)

Friday 29 February Almere/Utrecht
09.00 train ride to Utrecht
university campus De Uithof - densification of a 1960’s campus -
Explanations about the urban design by OMA
interior visits to several buildings:Educatorium (OMA, 1997), Minnaertgebouw (Neutelings Riedijk, 1997), Management-faculty(Mecanoo, 1995), university library (Wiel Arets, 2004), BasketBar (NL Architects, 2003),
NMR-laboratory (UN Studio, 2002), thermal power station (Liesbeth van der Pol, 2005), student housing Spaceboxes (De Vijf, 2005)
12.00 lunch break
13.30 Rietveld-Schröder-House (Gerrit Rietveld, 1924) - icon of De Stijl movement
return to Utrecht station, train ride to Almere
15.00 Almere City Centre- a centre for the sprawl - Masterplan by OMA
Retail and housing projects by a.o. Christian de Portzamparc, Gigon Guyer, SANAA, René van Zuuk, Meyer en Van Schooten, David Chipperfield, OMA, Will Alsop, de ArchitectenCie, SeArch etc.
17.00 end of tour, train ride to Amsterdam

Saturday March 1
Free day to visit museums

Sunday March 2 Amsterdam-West/Hilversum
09.00 start by bike from Central Station
10.00 Sportplaza Mercator (Ton Venhoeven, 2007) - swimming pool and health centre with plant façade -bike ride along housing blocks by Mecanoo (2007), de Architectengroep (1997) en DKV (2007) to
10.30 WoZoCo (MVRDV, 1998) - old people’s housing with cantilevering boxes
11.15 Parkrand (MVRDV, 2007) - housing slab with large view holes
return to Central Station, bike return
12.30 train ride to Hilversum
13.30 Media Park - broadcasting cluster in the Dutch media capital - 14.00 Villa VPRO (MVRDV, 1997) - Interior Visit Institute of Sound and Vision (Neutelings Riedijk, 2007)
Interior Visit, RVU-building (MVRDV, 1998), Media-commissariate (Koen van Velsen, 2002)
City Hall (W.M. Dudok, 1931)
17.00 end of tour, train ride to Amsterdam

Monday March 3
Meeting Place & Time: No later than17:30 at Schiphol airport Transavia counter for check-in
Amsterdam (Schiphol) (AMS) to Barcelona (BCN)
03-03-2008, flight HV5133 
departure Amsterdam (Schiphol) (AMS) at 18:30
arrive at Barcelona (BCN) at 20:45

Chad....my MAAAANN!

Ballin' presentations today, geis. Seriously, lookin' sharp out there. If you haven't already received your high five, they're on tap in B411...get 'em before I fall into an eternal slumber.

Gotta group meeting tonight to discuss our hybrid section--pretty pumped about it. Not sure where we're goin' with this thing yet, but I know where we're goin' after we finish it...


"Work hard, play hard" comes to mind. Also, a hearty Joey-esque "whoooooooooooahahwowhowoeeowh!!".

Class rule: No one says the word "data" while we're in Holland. It's just unnecessary...don't be harshin' my mellow.

Clemson on the leading edge...will it follow through?

Future methods of group reviews…?
Back on 13-Feb, we had a group review of our Case Studies from our first Study Travel week. Being innovative, we simply placed our laptops on the table and chairs in order to view everyone’s case studies at one time. Look at us, saving trees….well, in a way…. I don’t think anyone calculated the power surge created by this activity. …Is this the way of the FUTURE? Yet again, Clemson on the leading edge. GO TIGERS!!!

studio space is beautiful in Barcelona

Here are some photos of the studio space and our former group of students during their final presentations in December. This is the first year that our Barcelona campus has a real studio which is a real exciting development of this node of our Fluid Campus. The students have an entire floor of this beautiful building in the center of Barcelona in the Gothic district. On the other two floors of the building are two other architecture exchange programs which is another opportunity for more exchange. There is also a kitchen and a piano in the space which is shared among the groups. As was presented in an earlier blog entry... the studio was transformed for an amazing Thanksgiving dinner organized and thoughtfully put together by the entire group. We also had the fortune of hosting a couple of students from our Genoa node and a couple of parents and a sister and a boyfriend who joined us for dinner.

Yes. It's only Tuesday...

So after I freaked out about not having my clothes washed and thought we were leaving this afternoon, I realized that today is indeed Tuesday and not Wednesday. Apparently I was in reference to Monday and Tuesday in the previous blog. Just goes to show that happens to your mind….. It goes to mush! I know the Netherlands isn’t considered a break, but man I can’t wait! At least it’s a change.

Time Management....

SO, I just walked back from studio...it was almost 7 am...Our first review for Juan Carlos is tomorrow/ today in less than 4 hours.
If there is anything that architecture taught me, I would say its time management most of all. I came back, took the dirty clothes, put them in the washer, went back to my room, put some potatoes on the oven to boil, at the mean time, took a shower. And hopefully between now and 11 am, I would have worked and finished 2 data cards so I would take the chance and actually SLEEP for a change after we come back from Juan Carlos' review.
so I guess in these 4 hours I have, I should manage my time pretty well and get the most out of it... ohhh add to the list, I got one post on the blog accomplished ;)

Yet another all-nighter

Your friends are just now starting to get tuckered out in the states, my friends are just now getting started… its Thursday… NO WAIT, its Tuesday! No its Wednesday! -

This is my train of thought after working all night in studio, preparing for our “mid-term” review. Am I delirious or what? So in a couple of hours I get the honor of taking the metro first thing in the morning to go print stuff at the Universidad. Once I get back, I will hopefully start a load or two of laundry so I can have clean clothes for the Netherlands trip. Speaking of getting stuff done… I’m out.

zzzzzzzzzzzzz.....do i need one of these.....late night in studio and the longest title yet i think

Joey has just offered for anybody that wants to, to shower with him. It must be late. I am exhausted. It must be a review tomor....i mean today. We are close, and all afraid to go to sleep. "Everyone, Group save now." Just helping out all those other sleep deprived "in my opinion we are four" architects. I think we are all giving 100%, but our quota was 4,675,304%. We're a little off. Have I mentioned I am somewhat sleep deprived? I need a new Nestea and some salt and vinegar pringles. Will my steel research be right, or any of our presentation for that matter? I should have been a business major, studying abroad in Australia with the kiwis, with 12 hours of school and no worries in the world. I have just recieved a new email, hopefully it beholds no more bad news. Two datacards and two more hybrid sections. Netherlands here I come for some much needed relaxation....if i make it. I wonder if the beer vendors are still out. Can I ramble much more?

WELCOME TO MY MIND AT 5:50 IN THE MORNING. No recuerdo que es dormir. Am I even in Spain?

Good luck to my fellow architects. I want to shred the NTLNDS.

A little bit of fun we had this weekend. The band makes me smile.

Not so much Love and Architecture

25 February, 2008

Murphy's Law

Tomorrow is the first review. I do not think any of us are close to being finished. It is almost 11 now, and none of us seem to be pulling anything together. However, somehow I know we will all have presentations. No matter how many time the printer manages to malfunction this night. (The printer is already running out of ink)

Datascapes make me EMO (Cloud-Strike) save me

dear blog,

Doing all this datascaping is making me want to hide in the corner of my 25 x 25 room with the lights out while listening to Dashboard and cry. At least then i'll free myself from that which is made up word created by the devil.

Definition datascape: day-ta-skayp . n. information pertaining to the area of interest of architecture, landscape architecture, and millions of hours of work for nothing. Also see: Matrix, Superman, Predator, and imaginary.

On a lighter note Kathrin mentioned CLOUD STRIKE today which is definately not a type of imaginary city. I believe it is a Decepticon from Transformers. He is part of the elite allegience of terrorists trying to use the cube for the worst of humanity and machines alike.

Wash Owt.

Proxima estacio: HELL!!

dear blog,

Ok, so the title is a little extreme, but the work amount is pushing my limits. This week we have worked on datacards, datascapes, park projects for Kathrin, and playing juegos with Dulce. And all this is ok and expected, excpet for when it alls comes at you at once. For my birthday this year all I want is my 14,000 hours of sleep back.

On a school note, I did like my datacards this week. I chose to model them after the metros of the different places we've gone. If they place we went didn't have a metro, or we walked, I traced our path over a map and used different symbols and lines to represent walking, bus riding, and metro riding. I hope Hecker likes them. I had a little trouble at the end with saving Illustrator files and it worried me and it was Hell...literally. I think this week I'm going to do my two datacards on Paris, and maybe on taking my friends around Barcelona.

This week My friend Rick came to visit me from CT, and I toured him around. It felt good at first to take him around but I got bored after awhile. Oh well, can't write on here too long got our first review tommorow so I probably won't sleep AGAIN... tonight. :(

Wash Owt

Eto'o is the jam

Camp Nou was awesome. Holding more than 98,000, its the largest stadium in Europe. Clemson game days are hard to top, but it was awesome to get back into the live sports scene.

Its been hard to keep with everything going on in American sports, and its frustrating I can't just go to a bar and watch basketball, so a little FC Barcelona was just what I needed. Seeing some of the world's best futbol players, it was something I may never get a chance to do again. I was expecting to Ronaldihno and Messi to be impressive, but my man Eto'o was lighting it up. Pulling off the hat trick, I'm his newest fan.

I don't know if anything over here can make up for me missing this upcoming March Madness, but it sure helps.

I Wanna Uppercut a Punkass

so, has anyone seen those sketchballs on the streets at night sellin hashish, cervezas, coca, other sketchy paraphernalia, and callin honest, innocent asians chino? of course u hav, don't even deny it. it's a part of barcelona culture, and to b perfectly honest, it's not sumthin i admire. i gradually find myself becomin more and more aggressive these days, much more than i would ever have been in the states. i could just walk by and act like i didn't hear anythin, but u kno wat? sometimes u just gotta b aggressive right back for them to back down. and don't even mention the word chino to me, cus i everytime i hear that word, i just start seein red, and am ready to throw down whenever, wherever, whether there b pedestrians or cops, 1 of them or 10 of them. to me, they're all punkasses, and i just wanna uppercut every one of them.

replace the girl with said punkass

zurich almost perfect

Zurich was about one minute from not happening. After the week full of work, we had a flight at 4:10 Thursday afternoon. Ahead of Eggl by around 20 minutes, Brett, Cromer, and I had a little better luck. Jumping off the bus at the airport, we got to the counter as the "Last Call" sign was flashing. Deep sigh, now we just had to get through security. Running to our gate, we were again faced with the "Last Call" sign. Just in time. Time to forget about school for the next two days. Life in BCN will be much simpler when the new L9 train connects the city with the airport. The metro-train-bus combination can be quite annoying. Moral of the story, give yourself more than enough time to get to the airport.

Switzerland does it right. The public transportation (mostly an outdoor tram) is simple and efficient. Streets are clean, everyone knows English, the people are all nice. I found out it has been rated number one in "quality of life" for the entire world a few consecutive years in a row. The one thing I wished it had more of was contemporary architecture. With such a successful and technological city, it lacked the contemporary icons you might expect. When dining in McDonalds and eating their 4 franc french fries, we met an Australian who has lived in Zurich for the past ten years. When we asked him if he had any recommendations for contemporary architecture, and he told us we should check out Dubai. Thanks, a lot. We did find a train station by Calatrava that was kinda cool. We didn't have much time to explore much else other than Zurich, and I know there's plenty out around the area, but just being in the city less than 48 hours, I was extremely impressed. BLOG, out.

Review Numero Uno

I'm in studio gearing up for a long day/night of preparing for our first interim review. We have to present our final group card, datascape, "frank" plan, and all the data we've collected on tourism and lifestyles. Our group is trying to focus on creating sustainable tourism by developing a system of exchange between the citizens and tourists. The idea is that citizens will be able to use the tourists' spaces during low seasons so that nothing is wasted. We're going to create a datascape showing the fluxes in tourism and the spaces shared with citizens. We are also going to dissect the typical tourist to present his/her lifestyle. Its going to be a lot of work, so wish us luck!

In a way...

I was in Barcelona for sixteen days before I took my first night-time stroll alone. I was hungry for a durum from Malik's. My wallet was shoved in my front pocket along with my new cell phone, my keys, and my hand [protecting everything]. I wasn't taking any chances. Some call it paranoia, I call it vigilance. Tactful awareness.

That particular trip went off without a hitch. I made it back to RESA and grubbed on my delicious durum with a feeling of accomplishment and relief. I'd traversed the mean streets of BCN without being swindled by the swindlers, pick-pocketted by the pick-pocketters, or hooked by the nasty, scary man-hookers. But, as we've all realized, every late-night journey through the shady streets of Barc-town is a roll of the dice...I've got a one in six chance of not being heckled, eyeballed, or molested. I need some weighted dice.

Then one night I had a realization, an epiphany of sorts. I was leaving studio around 3am to cook up some comida and clear my head before getting back to work on something involving the word 'data'. As I entered the intersection between the chicken place and that ceramics store, I noticed that I was gettin' eyeballed by a few of the sketchy characters who'd set up shop there. Wearing a polo and north face...I may as well have been draped in an giant, well-coordinated American flag. Showboating.

North Africans: "hasish? marijuana?" Cromie: "no gracias".
Catalans: "shhesshh? charlie?" Cromie "no hablo".
Dirty Canadian hippy: "have you seen my shoes, man?" Cromie: "..."
And before that old Spaniard can breach my bubble..."no cervezas, gracias."

I didn't let any of their offers affect my b-line toward the dorms...at least they were being passive. Also, let's face it, it's hard out there on the streets..sometimes you gotta sling..to quote tupac, "that's just the way it is". It was only when a squirelly spanish kid started following me [despite my apparent lack of interest in whatever he was pedalling] that I became frustrated. After he made his proposals, he started doing that stupid little handshake dance that they do when they're trying to pick your pocket [most should know this dance well...Brett got got, now he knows, too]. At this point, I threw out a few choice words which conveyed my displeasure...words I learned from my older brother when I was twelve. This was followed by a brief exchange and some gestural profanities, some of which were legitimate...others I think I made up on the spot. Long story short...I made it to RESA unscathed.

Moral of the story: I don't want to be pestered every time I'm gettin' my pedestrian on. Here's the solution I came up with: look sketchier than the sketchballs. If you've got a hood, put it up! To avoid dealers: Have some swagger. Show determination in your stride. For deterring those awful hookers: Talk to yourself. Argue with yourself. Apologize to yourself for yelling. I've been workin' on my creepin' and I'm getting pretty good. You'd be surprised how easily you can slip under the radars of even the craftiest dealers and dumpster trolls. So if you see me skeezin' up the streets late night, don't be alarmed...it's a defense mechanism.

24 February, 2008


I experienced my first Spanish futbol match tonight in Camp Nou, with a win of 5-1. Xavi and Messi each had one goal for Barcelona and Eto'o sealed the deal with a hatrick. We also got to see the skills of Ronaldinho in person, but the best part of the match was just the atmosphere inside Camp Nou. As we walked to our seats, the first glimpse we got of the field was just amazing. I guess it's hard to grasp the scale of the building from the outside, and like any stadium the concrete interior that is packed with fans and concessions is somewhat dingy, but openings to the central space are what make it architecturally enticing, and programatically useful. In addition, the game seemed to bring everyone in that space together, no matter what language or nationality.

MLPP trading card portraits!!!!!

The RESA Open, a classic tournament of deathly brutal Ping Pong......the MLPP proudly celebrates its' first champion:
The Korean Dragans of Harry Han
with 2nd place taken by:
The Cripps of Ryan Ramsey
The Korean Dragons

The Egg Men The Wall Crawlers The Cripps

The Quacks The Hustlers The Silent Stalkers

23 February, 2008

This should be a clever title summarizing how I missed my flight to Zurich

So, two all nighters in a rows, tuesday and wednsday night. the all nighter wednsday night was necessary to finish datacards so I could make my flight to Zurich on Thursday afternoon. Seven are done at 8 AM Wednsday morning. I need a nap. I head back to RESA and throw in some laundry that hasn't been done since travel study. Wake up late and rush to studio forgetting to switch laundry to the dryer. Dang. Get to studio, and finish with group discussion. Begin working on final datacard. Completed at 1:30. Flight is at 4:10. Plenty of time, Oh wait, forgot to put laundry in dryer. Awesome. Laundry goes into dryer at 2:00. Go to room to save Illustrator files as PDFs. Computer keeps crashing because illustrator files are huge (my camera pictures are set on the highest quality, I am an idiot). I need more RAM/new computer. PDF's are finally saved. Transfer files to Harry's jumpdrive. Clothes are packed, and I am out of the door at 3. Make the 325 train to the airport at the Sants Estacio. Transfer to bus at the airport. Walk in front door. Phone rings. Cromer: "hey man, we just started taxiing." Me: "......" better not insert some of the words I may or may not have said. So I am still in Barcelona. And i forgot to blog.

harder. better. faster. stronger.

in relation to data cards, i need to learn to adapt all these things. i thought i was starting to learn how to work smarter last semester, but apparently winter break kicked that out of me, and i'm back to the beginning. it takes me so long to come up with a concept i really like, which is why i put off doing things for so long - that whole time i'm brainstorming. honestly, it sounds stupid, but for this new data card approach, i was eating, sleeping, and breathing new ideas, i just never liked them enough. i was trying to do something symbolic that was a record of how my time was being spent, because i really like that my data cards will be something i can show people after this semester, and i can use as a reminder of all the places i've been, things i've seen, awkward hobo encounters, etc. so, of course, i'm trying to fall asleep and can't stop thinking about data cards and work. so, around 02:45, i leap out of bed and find my sketch book to scribble down an idea i know i won't remember in the morning. turns out, even in my semi-incoherant state, the idea worked and i implemented it into my new data card design! v. exciting. working all night and not completely finishing them was a bit of a bummer, but i'm still working on them, and know i'll have more chances to edit, etc. this just might be the first thing i've produced in a long time i am pretty genuinely proud of. :) sappy, but true.


Well blogs have definitely gotten away from me this week. As with the other 22, I've put in a ton of work for studio/datacards/hybrids/etc. this week and the blog has truthfully just slipped between the cracks for me. I hope to get better at this, but for now, I'm hittin the sack so i can datascape like no other tomorrow. With a first JC review comin up, we'll have a lot of maps, diagrams, plans, information, datascapes, and other various forms of visual magic to produce in a few days. So, sleep now, work in the mornin.

Also, I had no clue what picture to put up here. So cliff hammonds is makin the barcelona blog, representin CU Architecture on the basketball team. Those boys only need a couple more wins to make it to the dance, GO TIGERS!!!

22 February, 2008

Predator Vision

BREAKTHROUGH...Juan "the mathmatician" Carlos finally told  our group what he wants in this mythical datascape that has yet to reveal itself.  He said "in my opinion, i would like to see a datascape look like, well have you seen the film predator? It shows data on everything he sees." Okay time to do that......soooooooooooooo our group put together a datascape that looked like that...JC comes back around....NO BUENO....why am i playing hopscotch?  I guess i am kind of delierious after those looooong nights....and i agree with my comrads that i am feeling a little bit vitamin D deficient...i need the sun.   But to bark more on JC....he expects us to put in so much work...i belive someone did the math one day (don't quote me i am not good at math...) and we are there around 48 hours a week....(class time mind you) and he is there 60 hours a semester....where is the problem here?  I NEED A PROFESSOR THAT WORKS WITH ME AND DOESN'T PLAY PING PONG WITH WHAT WE WANT.   It is always a relief with Professor Hecker.....he is not hard to please he is understanding and i feel as tho he gives una mierda about us.   

Datacards are cool but they can get out of hand....but i am rethinking my motto of "If it weren't for procrastination, I would have nothing to do tomorrow." into "Do the thing now so i can experience Barcelona......"  
Peace love and on a personal note....Ramsey takes forever to get ready  but a ping pong master i guess is a diva i dunno.  
so I uploaded the same image twice and I don't know how to remove one of them...


A language that everybody speaks

Today I woke up after a long night/ day sleep at 3 pm. and I'd like to take the chance and congratulate whoever invented those "Las Perisanas" aka window garage doors aka blinds... etc
so I woke up and I felt like exercising since I havent done that in a while thanks to Architecture. So I and Harry went to run by the beach. We got to that pushups & pullups area, worked out a little and then when we were done, started joggling with the ball.
after a while I realized that there was this kid, looking at us so I passed him the ball and he started playing with us, I was stuck by how well he played. It never occurred to me how with Futbol there is no need to even speak to the others, you just let the ball do all the ice breaking between people.
When we were done, we walked back home and on the way we passed by a school teacher who had a lot of little students walking around her, and as soon as they saw the ball they started shouting, Pasa la Pasa la.
So I guess there are some few things in life that take our minds away from our differences and make us just think about how we are similar. and Futbol is one of those things.