I seemingly start out prefacing these blog posts with, “I have no idea why…”, but in this case, I have no doubt. It is a fun approach to life which I never really knew what to call it until I began reading a bit more about Buckminster Fuller. I always am inspired by his approach, his story – not so much by what he created or what he’s known for (geodesic domes, predominately, and lectures on synergetics). I am inspired by him because he failed at being an architect and a builder and sat at his table one evening, wife and child in the other room, contemplating jumping out of a building and killing himself. Rather than suicide, however, Buckminster Fuller decided to commit Egocide – to just live as himself, without any preconceived notions of success, failure, or purpose. I don’t know how he paid bills in the time he spent hours a day studying trends and drawing up elaborate graphs at the beginning of this process. As a part of it – his whole act of ‘Egocide’- he became the lab rat, the first to test the whole idea. Guinea Pig ‘B’ is what he referred to himself as. Lovely notion, really. I admire and aspire to the same. I have no idea what I’m truly supposed to be doing and often I think, maybe it’s a bit silly at all to search for anything in life too hard. I’ve always thought we’re born with our mission, our skills, our purpose. Too much of life is spent trying to undo and dig out of the shit heaped upon you.
One of the other things I’ve always loved about Buckminster Fuller, is that he threw out conventional thinking about pretty much everything at least for himself and his view of understanding. There was no up or down, only towards and away, in and out. The wind didn’t blow – and really if you think of it, it doesn’t – it sucked, and it does. It takes no particular genius to figure that out, really – only a certain naivety that comes from looking at the world with childlike enthusiasm for actual answers to how things work, instead of relying on conventional knowledge. He challenged the basic premises and looked at them in reverse.
It always makes me wonder about things in the world, things we’ve created and overlook largely as a result of biases we have from the moment we seek to understand them and learn. I am intrigued to no end by things, like the way the Tacoma Narrows Bridge failed, oscillating itself apart by virtue of resonating with the wind. I think of the sheer power that effect had, and why no one wonders about trying to harness it. If wind power is a better solution to burning things why are we building such large scale versions of something so ancient and inelegant.
Long before I ever knew of him and simply fascinated at things like flags flapping in a breeze, Buckminster Fuller stated that nature creates no inelegant solution. I believe that to be true.
I had this strange dream one night about this very thing; long sheets flapping in a breeze generating power. I think it must have been almost 20 years ago it first popped into my head, and I've never been able to stop wondering about, thinking it to be an elegant solution to the way nature wants to work… I have no idea what to do with it, so I'm throwing it out of my head for someone else to ponder… I have other experiments to subject myself to.