Per-SPEC-tives No. 256: Dear......

by Ralph Liebing, RA, CSI, CDT, Cincinnati, OH

Dear Child of Mine:
Just lying here in the dark [it’s 3:40 AM] and thinking while Spiffy snores his doggy snores.

Had a thought about what I have to do tomorrow, not that it's a worry, but just want to make sure I get it done—and right!

I got to thinking about you and your future. Not pushing, just thinking. You do well in English, surviving both Bill Shakespeare and diagramming sentences; and you seem to write rather well [loved the autobiography and the so-so remarks about me!]. And you seem to have the computer very well in your control, but you still like to sketch and “design” houses.

Well, just a thought, but you might be a candidate for architecture! You are well rounded, and like the technical with a good sense of taste for sensibility, and not fads. You, like me, are not too adept at making things, but we try.

Now I have to confess that my choice to be an architect has been so very satisfying to me—the people I’ve met as colleages, employers and clients; the projects I’ve worked on, and the satisfaction of seeing work I DID being built! Wow, I’ll tell you there is little else like that.

Oh, I know I am not great designer—never was. But then someone has to be there to take the concepts and convert them into feet and inches, and grunt details. For me, that’s it-- putting the projects together—love it!

And now I’ve come to yet another threshold. Getting older [that’s old-er, not just OLD!] I can look back at the teaching I did—and I’m still doing it, but in the office. Now I get to answer questions, instead of asking them. Now I am a resource instead of being a "seeker". I know where to find things; I can call on experience to give advice and solutions; my background and knowledge still have value. Now I’m doing some really nifty work, still putting buildings together, but this time it’s with words!

Hey, let me just plant a seed with you-- has it ever crossed your mind that you could be a professional, and a spec writer, too? In-house, or private consultant.

For that matter, much of this applies to product representatives, too.

Not a bad life! Won’t get wealthy, but deep in good people and personal satisfaction!

© 2014, Ralph Liebing