Apparently there is this super poignant word in Portuguese that describes my mood since July 1st. The word is "saudade," or a "bitter-sweet melancholic yearning for something beautiful that is now gone." Nice uplifting start to the blog, hm? Welcome to full-transparency day at The Future Is Ok (If Not A Bit Saudade). **Cue the Fado, Kaitlin.
1. It was surprisingly warm last October and my summer saudade was still in full swing. I was living in acute awareness of how to feel feelings. 2009 was the last time that mood struck, though it wasn’t til 2012 that I met the film manifestation of this “feeling feelings” vibe when my boss/professor/bff introduced me to “Wings of Desire.” But, like I said, this was 2016. I was all feely and my new friend from Milan was in town and it was my turn to pick the movie for our backyard projector night at Kaitlin’s so naturally I chose Wings. Two hours passed and we found ourselves in lawn chairs on concrete slabs staring at a lit rectangle of siding in silence. We did the only thing two designers and a psychologist could do after such a viewing, meditate on the human condition. Kaitlin mulled over whether her love for fruit rollups stemmed from her mother's disapproval of candy. I joked about my collection of expired Xanax I had been too anxious to take. Buehrle (yes, that would be a dog named after a White Sox pitcher) lapped up some spilled Kombucha, probably contemplating how fermentation is basically bringing the dead back to life. Art proposed a toast to escapism, grabbed his swatch book and promptly left.
2. I took a solid four weeks to update my address when I moved. It was a bit of a miracle that this little package, wrapped in a page from AnOther, got to my house at all, let alone in time to use its contents. Inside were two plane tickets with “dinner @ my place Thursday - dogs OK” scribbled on top. I was hesitant but Kaitlin reminded me that we never say no to one-way flights to Milan for a potentially sketchy dinner. Fast forward a few days to us ringing Art’s door, being ushered in by a woman wearing her weight in feathers and my immediate gratitude for Kaitlin’s insistence we attend. Art and guests, namely Miuccia and Luca, rushed past small talk and began dropping rich, personal questions over apricots and prosecco. What experiences have softened you? How often do you reflect on conflict? In what do you find beauty? Though Buehrle seemed nonplussed, I was a bit taken aback by the honesty and sincerity with which the crew was chatting. “As of late, I suppose I am finding it in transparency,” I stammered. “Transparency plus those uncomfortably intricate patterns born out of nervousness.” Miuccia chewed on this for a second, turned to Kaitlin and asked “dear, how would you increase transparency in the coffee bean supply chain?”
3. The strongest memory from my last trip to Milan is crying in front of a closed Artemide showroom. I was wearing gold Adidas and a nude shift dress and it was really fucking hot and all I wanted was to immerse myself in that light. Specifically I wanted to sit under the warm hug that is the Mercury lamp and thank Ross Lovegrove, wherever he may be, for inspiring me to pursue design as a career. Turns out that is not an option on Sundays. Having vowed to never make that mistake again, I fashioned a little morning tradition of cappuccinos followed by a lengthy stay at Artemide. For three straight days. It was no wonder Kaitlin was so excited when we hopped off the tram at Nendo instead that fourth day. I must say I was a bit excited too. Mushy layers of blurred transparents swept across the floor. I was reminded of the indecipherable mesh of anchor points in an Illustrator file. I thought about time I said my dream house would be one large room of lightly stacked paper. And then I ran into a tub of floating vases, each one lightly tinted. “This is the dream,” Kaitlin said. Sure is, girl, sure is.