Friday, April 10, 2009

Cockroaches, Duct Tape & the Platonic Ideal

In my continuing quest to be good, I'm trying to do more home repairs. You know, DIY, do it yourself. Because it's frugal and virtuous and locapair (like locavore), i.e., not recently manufactured in China.


I'm not what you'd call a natural DIY-er, however. Though I do have about five hammers, and I'm not sure where they've all come from, they've just mysteriously appeared in my toolbox over the years. And I've bought a roll of duct tape and been introduced to the wonders of taping and caulk to reduce the cockroach population in my apartment. Just recently, I taped up the hole in my kitchen trash can and felt very proud of myself.

Sad, I know. But I'm on a mission to destroy cockroaches in my home. Which may not be a very good-girl thing to do, since it's so cruel. Last week, I mass-murdered an entire village of cockroaches that had somehow infested this trash can despite the duct tape. A friend tells me not to feel bad, though, because the cockroaches were evil people in their past life and were now suffering as miserable cockroaches, and by killing them I actually helped them move on to their next incarnation, where they'll live a redeemed existence inside a more noble creature's body.

But moving on to the Platonic ideal. According to Kidipede, the kids' history Web site, "Plato thought a lot about the natural world and how it works. He thought that everything had a sort of ideal form, like the idea of a chair, and then an actual chair was a sort of poor imitation of the ideal chair that exists only in your mind."

Now, I just happen to own a chair that so perfectly embodies the chairness of a chair, that I will never need to own another chair again. Plato's ideal chair (cat not included)

Unfortunately, this chair is so old and wooden and perfect that it's busted up in back.

As I mentioned, I'm pretty hopeless when it comes to DIY, but I love this chair so much that I really want to fix it. Luckily for me, I live in Brooklyn, where there's this art gallery called Proteus Gowanus that lets you bring broken stuff to a weekly workshop where you can try to learn how to be creative with DIY. How cool is that?

Here's what Proteus Gowanus says about their Fixers Collective: "The Fixers Collective is a social experiment in improvisational fixing and mending. Our goal is to increase material literacy in our community by fostering an ethic of creative caring toward the objects in our lives."

So now I have a DIY project in my future and an opportunity to be a better person. I'll keep you posted on my progress.

1 comment:

  1. If you go there let me know and I'll meet you at the Canal Bar around the corner for a celebratory "i fixed it!" drinky poo!