The Architecture of Demographics: Life lessons from the architect to the latherer

I stood at the edge of the concrete slab on floor 11. It was 26 fahrenheit and the West wind was ripping water from my eyes. The noise of the bolt drills hammered my ears. I gripped my icicled fingers around my pen and tried to scribble down some notes. But the ink was frozen. I sighed a stream of smoke and glanced up from my wad of drawings. Two lines of men standing opposite each other, were billowing out a tune at the top of their lungs. In full harmony a cloud of human breath hovered over their steel creation. I was mesmerised by their spirits in the cold as they worked with great speed, weaving the wire around the rebar and twisting it in place.

“We’ll be topping off the 50th floor in two months. Francesco, we’re just waiting for the last set of architecturals to come through” said Sean.

“Sure thing,” replied Francesco, sitting in his neatly pressed tweed sport jacket.

Before leaving I swiftly navigated through the ever changing ground floor maze of masonry to the North elevation. Whilst passing through I said a quick hi to Smokey, Spice, Joe, Joe and Joey. On the way back I paused to look at a plumber’s threading machine. He told me threading was a little boring and it’s only economical up to 4 inches then you’re better off welding which was his favourite. “I’m telling you kid, do what you love. I’ve been doing this for 36 years and I love 95% of my days at work. Don’t ever do it for the money.” And right then I had discovered the true demographics of architecture.

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Ash Low