Step inside a 400-square-foot apartment space, transformed by elaborate built-ins:
The quote I've used for the post title appears about midway and marks the spot where my mood began to shift from delight to despair. What do we think of this man, who is promoting what seems to be a simplified, de-cluttered way of life, but who is, himself, in a business, promoting expensive merchandise, the machinery of compression. Do we want to be compressed thusly? It's one thing to live like this on board a cruise ship, but permanently? For a certain type of person — perhaps this man, or the man he pretends to be — it's a fine, joyful existence. Would he ever really have a dinner party for 10 in this space, as we see enacted at the end? It's not a real party, because it's an on-camera demonstration of the space. Watch closely and notice how the women are responding. There is something they do not love, and it is visible even in this crisply edited production. I felt empathy with these women and resistance to the man's sales pitch. And I remembered the gutted space shown at the beginning of the video, and thought that I could be happy, living in SoHo, in that 400-square-foot space as it looks right then. Just do the kitchen and the bathroom, nice and modern and constrained into a modest space, and let me put in some normal furniture — a good-sized table near the window for my work and eating space (that can be cleared off if anyone needs to come over for dinner) and I'll order a sleeper sofa from Design Within Reach. Spare me all those insane, ever-encroaching built-ins, and those crazy pop-up extra beds for guests. Guests to the city can get a hotel room or sleep on the floor or I'll add sleeper chair. By the end of the video, I felt paranoid that the government had a plan to shift us into smaller and smaller pods with evil corporations getting rich fitting them out with soul crushing storage bins. Mayor Bloomberg! Who fixed your ducts? Huh? Fixed your ducts, all right. I told you before - they fixed themselves. Oh, yeah? Then where did this come from, eh? Out of your nostril? Eh? Nostrils, eh? Central Services. They don't take kindly to sabotage. Sabotage, huh? Jesus, this place is in a terrible state. Just a minute! You're not gonna leave it like this, are you? Why not? All you gotta do is blow your nose and it's fixed, innit?