Makeshift Brooklyn Week 012

Week 012 felt like this:

We’re the ribbon of magnetic tape feeling the dual forces of big picture strategic issues on one hand and minute details on the other. So in other words, we’re like every other small business. I’m not telling you which fan represents which side.

This week was door locks and security, pricing, reciprocal use policies, paint colors, brand and positioning, alliances, Ruby on Rails, construction planning, special inspectors, TR-8s (not to be confused with T-8s), and choosing your battles.

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This is soon to be a kitchen and, in the distance, a second bathroom.

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Grinding down some exposed metal so it’s not a safety hazard.

The most important part of the week was meeting with our general contractor, Gabe, to review all of the drawings and make sure we have a mutual understanding of the scope of work.

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Welcome to the team, Gabe!

The most surprising part of the week was a late-friday phone call that could have ended in lawyers but didn’t – not yet anyways. Point one for pragmatism and civility.

I enjoyed a coffee with Ryan Jacoby of Machine, a group that helps small companies think bigger and big companies act smaller. If we’re lucky, Machine and Makeshift will find a way to collaborate in the new year.

Friend-of-Makeshift Chiara Camponeschi released volume two of her book Enabling City which you can download from the book site (v1, v2). Both books focus on the way that new potential is being squeezed out of democracies the world over and are filled with examples of clever, hopeful, provocative projects. From the introduction to volume two this Italo Calvino quote from Invisible Cities is relevant to us as we think about Makeshift’s role in the cities that it is part of: “You take delight not in a city’s seven or seventy wonders but in the answer it gives to a question of yours.” It’s a reminder that we must be an answer, maybe even a wonderful answer, but never just a wonder.

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This post started with art and it’s join to end with it. Recently the New Museum announced that they too are entering the workspace game and will be opening an “incubator.” Welcome, New Museum. Let’s get drinks.