Happy New Year from the Mythological Quarter. We spent the first part of 2014 riding out the polar vortex in Southwest Florida. We are now back in Copenhagen and ready to bring you a new year of stories from our neighborhood, book reviews, information on projects we are working on, and pictures of public phenomena—i.e., interesting ways people are using public space. For example, while walking around the neighborhood in Florida we saw this amazingly well decorated front yard.

The front lawn becomes an ersatz public forum for self expression in the United States. These folks were expressing the heck out of themselves via their extensive collection of pink flamingos and tourist flotsam in the form of flip flops found on the nearby beach. We were impressed by their efforts. It made for a respite from the homogenous surrounding landscape of sprayed lawns and cookie cutter beach mansions, and it brightened our New Year’s celebrations.

front yard display flamingo


flamingo christmas tree


One important thing that we missed while visiting the U.S. was the great walking and biking culture associated with life in Copenhagen. Too much of our time visiting was spent riding or driving around in cars. Vast amounts of the current U.S. landscape are focused on car accessibility.  Living in cities designed on the scale of cars, not people, is alienating. We look forward to the time when walk- and bike-ability is a deciding factor in the planning of U.S. cities.


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