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George Challies

B.Arch. 1964
Toronto, ON
Interview by Jim Donaldson

Let’s talk about how you decided to make the big decision to become an architect.

Right, I certainly didn’t think about it until- well, I started to think about it maybe earlier than some but in midway through high school. And I had considered law because my father was a lawyer and then became a judge. He certainly suggested law would be a good career to follow. My grandfather was an engineer so there was that side of that profession to consider. I liked the idea of getting into a profession and a lot of my reasons for picking architecture had to do with the what became fairly superficial or the glamorous side of architecture, reading Architectural Record magazines that my aunt, a librarian, had obtained through a library, talking to my grandfather about the architects, the architectural projects that were done but not listening to some of the issues about production and some of the difficulties of architecture, keeping in mind my father’s comment that any architect he knew in the depression had no work whatsoever in architecture and had to do other things. However, those factors aside, it seemed that it was the interesting field. I did give law a- certainly, certainly gave law a consideration and one of the things which might have had a bit of influence was my father introduced me to some of the colleagues that he had worked with and tried to present a cross-section of people who I might have met socially through the family but who were- I hadn’t actually seen in their offices or in their university offices if they were professors and suddenly they were all fine people. The one who maybe threw me off law quite a bit was the one who said, “One of the wonders of law is you study and you study Latin; you study the law in Latin and you could have the wonderful pleasure of reading Latin law, Roman law in the original and Roman literature and original literature in the original Latin”. And I sort of asked him whether that was an essential part of being a lawyer but he said, “Well, that’s one of the great pleasures”. And I considered that was a pleasure that I could certainly do without!

[2:17:11]

So you ended up going to McGill probably about, 1958?

Yes, started in 1958. So automatically straight from the end of high school into McGill. And in those days we were sixteen, well, I was sixteen or some were seventeen but we were pretty young compared to some kids starting university today. And the transition of McGill made it somewhat easier in that we didn’t- we really didn’t get into any architectural courses until second year and we really didn’t get into what we all considered the real architectural courses ‘till we got to third year. But there was a feeling that I remember all of us in our first year technical courses, physics, maths and so on, trying to find out who the architects were to size up what their interests might be and to sort of hope that if we got through some of those tough courses that we’d find some common interests.

[3:09:19]

I’m trying to remember, did we not take any architectural courses in the first couple of years?

In second year we took them, yes.

In second year, okay.

We took Gordon Wilson’s design course.

Gordon Webber.

Gordon Webber, sorry, Gordon Webber’s design course. And that was certainly interesting. I remember being so anxious to do something architectural, in my image of architecture, being the renderings I had seen in these magazines, that he presented a project that was something to the effect of draw, do a drawing from memory or a creative drawing that represents your ideas about a building, and so I immediately proceeded to do an architectural rendering of a building that I was imagining and so on. But the emphasis was on the rendering as opposed to the creative aspect of what Gordon was looking for.

[3:57:11]

Did Gordon continue to teach you during the years or was it just the second? Didn’t he have another course?

There were courses at least in second, maybe, sorry, third, perhaps even into fourth year. He was definitely an influence on the visual design side of things, the visual- you know, he was-

He was really our first exposure actually to sort of the architectural field, was Gordon Webber.

With Gordon Webber. And I believe I’m correct in saying we had history of architecture starting in second year, although I’m not certain.

Probably the best thing to do is to ignore the years. Just talk in generalities.

Yes, about the courses. Good point.

[4:36:20]

Did you- I guess what I wanted to ask you, could you talk a little bit about some of your memories of some of the professors or some of the courses that they taught at least?

Yes, well, on the subject of the history of architecture, I definitely immediately was interested in the Peter Collins courses in history of architecture. I just knew the importance of the subject and could sense right away that he was a real master at his subject and loved his subject and he wasn’ t at that point trying to turn us all into French classical architects. And that came a bit later when he saw that his- when it came to more modern architecture, he felt that the classical period was the great period and I again respected his views on that having seen the- I didn’t follow his teachings necessarily but certainly respected his views. But his preparation, the quality of his slides, was just fantastic. They were good enough to-

[5:36:07]

He usually gets ten just about from everybody that I talk to. What about now, we can get back to Peter, but Stuart Wilson? Did he have any influence on you?

Oh, very much so. He was just a- I can’t say we’re similar personalities by any means but I could respect the- realize right away that there is an eccentric side to life and an eccentric side to architecture and Stuart was definitely on the edge of that eccentric side and certainly quite often over the edge. But it was just a great influence and in his unusual way, he prompted people to really think and to really think through, of course, whether they wanted to be in architecture or maybe follow dentistry, which was his common suggestion.

I think he brought that up from time to time!

Yes, from time to time! And some of us should have probably followed his advice! He didn’t suggest it to me but whatever.

[6:30:08]

He was- some people have commented that he was very tough on people. And I can remember instances where he would rip drawings down off walls and all the rest of it. And some lady commented that she found him a disaster from that point of view. She said a lot of architects who are quite sensitive usually are better qualified and as a result of this exercise on Stuart’s part, a lot of the young people quit. That was her comment and there’s probably some truth to it. But it gets sorted out sooner or later.

Yes, and I think he was tough and demanding but not- I don’t think he was really cruel.

No, he wasn’t cruel.

No, and he just, he was just- again, you had to- the first exposure to his just fury or something was certainly tough but you gradually got used to that and knew not to try to see him at nine o’clock in the morning, especially if he was appearing from out of his lair in the School of Architecture building in a groggy state!

[7:29:05]

Some people remember him as hanging over the desk with a cigarette hanging out of his mouth with the ashes dropping on your drawing.

Yes, yes.

You know, the old days! How about-?

I just thought perhaps I’d add one story about Stuart that you might not have heard about but it was- I was not present at the time but it was something that was carried through from I think it was after he had led the group of students on the CMHC housing tour. And the group of people when they got back to wherever it was, Ottawa, McGill or Montreal, they were doing a project on housing for a working-class district in Montreal. And Stuart was roaming around looking at these very elaborate presentations from some of the brightest young student architects and made some comments and then finally said to all of them, “Where are the sheds?” “What do you mean, Professor Wilson, ‘where are the sheds?’” “Well, you have to have sheds in working-class housing. These people are all used to having their houses, their units, walk-ups and ground-level units, whatever they are, but they’ve all got sheds. They’ve got sheds where they store things and sheds where they keep the spare parts for their cars that they keep having to fix or the various bits and pieces of equipment that they have. These are not fancy workshops or artist studios. These are just sheds. You’ve got to design sheds for these people if you want to design real working-class housing”.

[8:51:26]

And the sheds are still there!

Yes. So he encouraged them to think hard about the context and so on and that became a bit of a- amongst those of us who had heard the story, whenever someone missed something out in the design, we-

And I think that Stuart in those years went to most of the Sketching Schools.

Yes.

With Gordon Webber.

Yes, yes. And he was, you know, a great, great influence at both the Kingston Sketching School and the one we went to, Montmorency.

Montmorency, okay.

It was at the Chateau or l’Hotel de Montmorency and we were there and I remember Stuart just look- he’d do his critique. And I guess he and Gordon would do the critique at the end of the day but Stuart’s comments were more provocative than Gordon’s, as you might imagine!

[9:38:03]

Gordon never really said anything derogatory about anybody’s work. I mean he’d just make suggestions about improving or comment. And he was never really a- there was not a mean bone in his body.

No, no. I don’t think so. Stuart was really again being in his eccentric way encouraging people to think about something different and he’d say, “This looks too idealized. This is a lovely old house but I was there. There were cars parked in front of it, telephone poles and-“ “But Sir, why would we sketch those things?” “Well, people are going to want to know what Montmorency looked like in 1962. You’ve got to show them that. You’ve got to be authentic”.

[10:22:21]

I’m trying to remember- how about some of the other professors that taught you at university.

Norbert was new to- was relatively new to the school of architecture. I’m not sure. I think we were the second or third, the second class perhaps that had him in- when we got to fifth year. And he was a very, a very good influence. He had a different style than someone like Stuart but very good in his way, in his somewhat quiet but determined way to remind people of housing and the needs for housing particularly.

He made his whole life I guess pretty well involved in housing.

In housing projects. And that was something which, well there weren’t as many architects at the time who were looking at all aspects of housing and certainly Norbert brought that Scandinavian sensibility, a much more thoughtful approach instead of- it was opposite of the extreme of the master builders who said, “This is how people should live and they damn well are going to live my way or else”. Norbert’s was to find out how people want to live and think about the weather. Think about the context. Think about the family structure if it’s a family. Think about single people if it’s for single people.

[11:31:11]

And don’t forget the sheds in the back! Even Norbert would agree!

He would have agreed with that, yes.

Was John Schreiber? Did you take any courses with him at all?

It was just a kind of an urban design or planning course with John because I think he was already- he was doing more work with the graduates then. Well, a landscape architecture course.

Yeah, that’s right.

I must confess, I do remember him as being good but I don’t have vivid memories.

John Bland taught you I guess for a period. He taught Canadian history.

There was, yes, that’s right. And he was really the grand, what do you call it, the- a bit of a father figure and definitely seemed to be a sobering influence on some of the more controversial aspects in the school and was- people respected, I and others respected the work that he had done. His role seemed to be more administrative. He didn’t try to put his stamp on the school in an obvious way but I think he did in terms of administration. And he kept the quality up. I’m sure he kept the fight up with the- to retain the autonomy of the School of Architecture in the face of the much greater power of the Faculty of Engineering who were not exactly sympathetic to some of the special things architects wanted to do. So I really in retrospect respect John Bland and even more than I might have respected him or noticed him on a day-to-day basis. But he was there. He was very definitely.

[13:28:04]

I’m just thinking one of the other influences on our lives even though it might have been a modest influence was of course Gerry Tondino.

Yes.

Who up until just a few months ago was still teaching.

Is that right? Wow! That’s nice to see!

And that goes back a few years!

Yes! Yes!

And I think he taught us. He certainly taught our class, which was a few years ahead of you, and he’s hung in there. And I’m trying to think whether there was anyone else. The only other person who I can think of who had sort of a calming influence on all of us was Maureen Anderson who was around there for a while.

Yes, yes. Maureen was definitely a great lady and I think maybe another example of what might have been John Bland’s influence too, was Mrs. Anhalt. It was István Anhalt, the composer, and it was his wife, Mrs. Anhalt, I believe, who was the librarian at the architecture library…

Oh yeah, yeah.

…at the Blackader library. And she was fantastic. She was a great resource and a very warm and helpful person.

[14:25:11]

Mrs. Doelle, wasn’t it? Mrs. Doelle? Leslie Doelle who was the fellow who taught acoustics? Is that the one you are thinking of?

Oh, maybe yes. Yes, maybe I’m wrong there. Okay, maybe I’m wrong with the name.

It was D-O-E-L-L-E. In fact I-

Mrs. Doelle, okay, all right. Yes. Okay. I’m wrong with the name.

That’s more than a few years ago!

If those comments are helpful, I’ll repeat them again by saying that the librarian, Mrs. Doelle was a great lady!

Were there any, when you look back, there were some courses that you took, were there any that you enjoyed more or specifically that influenced you or had more time with them? History is probably is one of them, I suppose.

The history, I certainly did enjoy the history of architecture and the challenge quite often was to stay awake despite Peter Collins’s slides were so fine and his preparation was so good but it was still a challenge since we were a very competitive group and would often get into these late night studies and late night work in the studios through various years. And Peter’s course was typically very early in the morning and so a few of us would jab each other to keep ourselves away but we certainly missed something.

[15:38:21]

Always with the light- the lights were always out too.

The lights were out as soon as the slides started. You’d be- you know, I could certainly nod off and wouldn’t always be awakened by someone else or wouldn’t be there to wake up someone else who was nodding off. So I could have spent even more time, although there were also some examples of- I’m frankly not sure whether it was through Peter or not, but I remember Ross Hayes and I doing a bit of a historical study of St. James Street and the buildings of St. James Street and really getting into pretty extensive documentation on photographs and old drawings and historical texts on the development of St. James Street as a commercial street in Montreal. And so that was an interesting variation on the more conventional courses.

[16:21:04]

Do you remember Harold Spence-Sales?

Oh, yes of course, of course!

How could you forget that?

Yeah, I couldn’t forget Harold and his eccentric ways and I just remember his style over substance, I think is my general impression.

Yeah, I think so. Some of the- it was actually Gerry Sheff who said that most of his points that he made had sexual connotations.

I guess!

Like a beautiful little flower and all the rest of it. And he said a professor today who gave lectures like that would be in very deep trouble with the faculty because the women would have him up on sexual harassment or some form of that. And I was trying to remember back but he gave me some specific examples and I was quite amazed that he could remember that.

No, I don’t remember those. I do remember-

It was interesting, interesting times. It was always like entertainment.

Yes, yes, it certainly did not give a great grounding in the history of urban planning and certainly not in urban design. And I did some work in those fields later and certainly- and went to Europe to realize how cities come together, the final product and how difficult that can be. And I can’t say Harold with his flowery, stylistic way really cast much light.

[17:36:17]

One of the things that might be of some interest is about the controversial aspect of our class, ‘cause some of this might have sounded too diplomatic or too much satisfaction with McGill. But we did have the famous Jonas Lehrman in fourth year. And we didn’t criticize him the first day but by the third or fourth day of classes we were starting to get a little bit suspicious and the final culmination of our frustration was when we organized a petition and I think my name is one of two or three on the top of the petition, which as a judge’s son was a bit risky but- not always a good idea, but we were determined that Jonas Lehrman would not be there for any more than one year and I think that we succeeded, because he just didn’t add. He was just this fussy-

He was a great advocate of, my sharp memory of him, of Mies van der Rohe. I think, “Less is more”.

Yes, yes. And he got us into designing porcelain and thought that design was design and if you can design one thing, you can design something else. And if you compare that to what we learned the year before from Stuart Wilson, it couldn’t have been a greater contrast.

Somebody indicated he went to Winnipeg. I think he’s out in University of Manitoba.

Yes, he might still be there. He was there for a long time.

They probably don’t know he’s there!

That could be, yes! He’s not been invited back!

[19:05:07]

Okay, just before we close off this segment, have you got any memories of your fellow classmates or any funny stories? That’s probably putting you on the spot. Or do you, for example, keep in touch with any of those people who became good friends of yours?

Well, certainly Ross Hayes was a good friend. In high school they said we agreed jointly and sort of separately to get into architecture and I certainly enjoyed and remained friends through the university days. And then Phil Beinhacker became quite a friend and then we got to know Bruce reasonably well. So we were either praised or loathed as being the three or four wise men at one point in time. By the time we got to fifth year and sixth year, and we didn’t set ourselves up as being any- as the leaders of the class by any means, because there were a lot of very bright, creative people in the class. It’s just that we did certain things together. Ross and I were not nearly as smart as Phil when it came to some of the engineering courses and we were better at design than Phil, so it was a good collaboration there. And Bruce tended to do a lot of things on his own but we sometimes collaborated. And we did, we shared a space. The four of us were in around the same area of the studio in sixth year. Although, when Bruce brought his mega-model in for the redevelopment of all of lower Westmount, we had to contract our space a little bit, and we realized first place was already taken!

[20:35:24]

He always amazes me. He’s still the same way today. He just churns out work. I mean it’s unbelievable. I mean he’s busy enough as an architect. He does a lot of work in the private sector for housing.

Yes.

He does a lot of very big houses.

Does he? Yes.

And they have all their clientele and he gets referred to. These are two and three-million-dollar houses down in Stowe, Vermont or up at Mont Tremblant or something like that.

Yes? Oh.

And he goes into every corner of the house. You know, he won’t do a floor without- he wouldn’t do a floor like this. He’d have to have it all- the wood would have to be certain types of wood arranged, the whole pattern of the floor.

Yes.

He does the dentils around the- you know in the plaster mouldings and- unbelievable. And then he builds models of every house.

Oh yes, yes, he just hasn’t lost his incredible energy.

Three-dimensional models. And he loves doing them himself. He will not delegate that out to a draughtsperson. He said, “I can build a model of a general house in about six hours”. Unbelievable!

Yes, right!

It’s a great tool for trying to convince a client this is what the house is going to be because most, as you know better than I do, they can’t read drawings.

Yes, yes, that would be- I’m sure.

I’m doing too much talking!

Well, I’m sure Bruce would be great. I think another thing which we all remembered and I think Bruce would probably remember not only that his- that mega-model demoralized some people and sobered up some others and got some others working harder but he had his workshop there. It was only when Bruce particularly and was forced to work out of the studio, because he had been working separately at home or in an office somewhere before that but it was only when he was forced to that he brought everything together but he brought a power saw along and if the pop- and he brought a record player. And we also- I think I had one and we used to like classical music as part of our group, or occasionally jazz, but the pop music in that day was pretty awful, especially whatever CJAD churned out. And that would be on on the other side of the wall. And if it got too loud, Bruce would either put on Bach’s Suite for Unaccompanied Cello, which was pretty heavy going at one in the morning unless you’re a real connoisseur, and if that didn’t work, he’d turn his table saw on and start cutting wood! So Bruce is remembered. The other three or four wise men, as we might have been called, were a little less aggressive than Bruce was.

[22:56:22]

Yeah, because you had an interesting class…

Very creative.

…because one of the parties that I interviewed was Pat Falta. [Unclear]

Yes, yes, right, Pat.

She’s had an interesting life, too. You know the sad part of it but she rose to the challenge and she did a lot of teaching at University of Montreal and of course, she helped out CMHC and so forth and I think when I was at Air Canada, we hired her to help us design, you know, certain facilities for the handicapped.

Yes, yes.

Remarkable woman.

Yes, yes, I really admire Pat for what she has done. It’s really quite incredible. There were a number of French-speaking students at McGill who spoke good English but not perfect English by any means. Patrick Blouin is one who then passed away quite a few years ago. And I guess his father, André Blouin’s practice was continuing for a long time. There was the ever-elegant Marie-Josée Raymond. And I’m not sure what career she’s followed. Someone who has ended up teaching at- a fellow whose name I’ve forgotten temporarily was teaching at University of Montreal or UQAM, University of Quebec in- à Montréal, and then Jacques Dalibard has done extremely well in the heritage movement and really distinguished himself in that area. And I’ve run across Jacques from time to time and then saw him at the ’96 reunion. So it was quite a- there were, say, five or six French-speaking people and having been intent on learning French, I was not bilingual then, I am now, but at that time it was interesting because I spoke some French to that group. And I don’ t know if that added much, if any other students benefited from that French influence, but I would imagine so. And certainly the French students benefited from their guts in going to McGill rather than going to- taking an easier route and going to University of Montreal.

[24:47:16]

It’s interesting that you mention that, because I think in our class, I don’t remember, maybe they was one or two, but I don’t remember who they were, but what we did have is we had six students from Hong Kong.

Oh, yes.

We had Arthur Law and [unclear]. We had six out of twenty-two, so that a- you know, it’s about thirty percent of the class was Chinese.

Yes, unusual, yes.

So what I wanted to do, George, I’d like you to spend a little bit of time talking about what you did immediately after you graduated and then talk about what you are doing today.

Yes, all right. No, I certainly was interested in various aspects of studies at McGill but certainly still felt that I was interested in the more glamorous side of architecture or the side which is projected in the periodicals and the publications of design and changing the face of the world through one building or larger-scale buildings and there was certainly a model at McGill in the form of Moshe Safdie of someone who had far more ambition and guts than I did but I was hoping that I- I’d applied to Moshe personally when I heard that he had been selected to do Habitat. That started just in ’64 when just the year I graduated and was one of the few from McGill who succeeded in getting a job with Moshe. One of them was Pierre Larose, who was quite a quiet, good but quiet architect in our group and did very well in Moshe’s office for a number of years. I’ve lost complete contact with him since, but-. So it was very, very interesting going from McGill straight to Moshe’s office for a number of months. The project had its ups and downs. He started off with a massive, four-thousand-unit, I believe, Habitat project and it was then- there was a long, hiatus for several months when it had to be scaled down. During that period, I then did some work at David Boulva, who were associated with Moshe on the project and in fact worked with Mike [Willem] on a project for Loyola, Loyola which is now part of Concordia. And that’s the case too, I was- I somehow managed to talk my way into doing the design concept for the project, although Mike probably should have done it, but it was fun.

[27:00:06]

What was that? The high school or-?

No, it was an athletic building on the playing field, or the field house location, but right at the edge of the playing field.

Okay. On the south side of the street?

Yes. On the south side of Sherbrooke Street. And the programme included a gymnasium and an arena and then some common facilities and change rooms and we had the concept of having a building, which actually had natural light. Most gyms, of course, that was in the sixties period when buildings were completely- when the idea was to come up with a practical solution and cut out the light because you might get reflections, it might get warm, you might get a little bit too warm and I was determined that the concept would include light, even in the arena. And that was a bit more of a challenge but the- I forgot who the mechanical engineers were but they patiently looked at ways to allow for the light. There were deep overhangs over the building so that cut out all but the lowest, winter sun, which was not going to be a major problem anyway. But I did work with Mike on design development as well and then just at the time when some of the tough problems would have occurred, I was called back to Moshe’s office to continue on Habitat and stayed there until the- for about a total of a year and in May, April, May of ’65, 1965, I then took the trip to Europe, the study session and working session in Europe.

[28:24:12]

So you left Moshe’s office when the construction started, I guess.

It was about the time they were starting to get into the nitty-gritty, which in fact took several years of working out with Choc-béton how to build a building that was almost unbuildable. And I missed that, however, I, fortunately, didn’t just abandon the project. I didn’t lose all of that technical input because when I returned from Europe in early ’67, there was- I worked for Moshe again and at that time, they were still completing parts of Habitat. One part was unfinished during the exhibition and it remained as an example of the construction phase. They made the best of something by turning that into a construction exhibition. And I did some work on that on the panels and displays for that. So it definitely balanced out the experience.

[29:13:07]

The interesting thing is that that development, Habitat, is probably one of the more popular places to live in Montreal.

Yes.

People who live there never move.

Yes, yes. Is that right?

I’ve known a number of people there over the years and if anything, they buy a neighbour- adjacent units and expand their existing facility.

Yes, yes.

Unbelievable.

That’s interesting. I’ve heard that from a few people and I didn’t know whether that was typical or not. But friends, for example, people of my parents’ generation who in fact have lived in a very typical, bourgeois house in Westmount and moved down there when they left their house and they were delighted. They loved it and there were young people, old people…

[29:50:06]

So you stayed in Montreal doing various things so, anyhow, go ahead.

After, well, Europe was certainly a great experience. Not so much the- the experience in Paris was terrific. I did the grand tour and saved up enough money to buy an MGB and tour around Europe staying in youth hostels to save money, parking the car a block away when I had to when they didn’t allow people to drive up to the youth hostel, spending my buck a night or whatever and keeping my priorities straight and finding enough money for gas, which is about all I could find until I got back and then returned to Paris and started working there and spent about close to year in Paris. And it was- certainly French architecture has improved a great deal since those days when there were only a handful of offices that were doing serious work from taking things from design right through to execution. There were the Beaux-Arts offices, one of which I worked in and it was limited professional experience but a great social experience.

A lot of fun.

A great broadening experience. Great fun. And then worked in Rome for about six months in an American office that did more traditional, international work where we were doing design, working drawings, specifications, etc. And then work fell through there.

[31:08:11]

So then what? You came back to-

And then returned to Montreal in early ’67. And that’s when I then started to work for- Moshe for a short period or for about close to six months or maybe it was close to a year even. And then his work really dried up in Montreal and did some other things and some more conventional work working on housing projects and work at Nuns’ Island and then switched to Arcop for a while and then took one of my first moves away from architecture into planning and airport planning on the Montreal airport project.

Oh yeah, okay.

Which involved- Phil Beinhacker had been involved in that project through van Ginkel. He and Ross Hayes and I had worked for Sandy van Ginkel. He then worked with- or another Toronto transportation firm was called in and met some very interesting people. Found it much more stimulating than doing working drawings in housing, for example. And found it much more interesting work and decided that that would be an interesting path to follow for some time and did that.

[32:16:15]

And so eventually, I’m just trying to get you- you moved to Toronto in what year?

I moved to Toronto in ’71. So it was after a few years on the Montreal airport project and then went- joined the planning firm that eventually became the IBI Group.

Oh, okay.

And so continued on in urban design and planning with a limited amount of- the architectural work was only preliminary design because after that, it would be- the scope of the practice did not allow for architectural design. So I was really away from architecture for quite a period of time and stayed away. One more career move was to get away from airport planning because that seemed to be- it wasn’t leading to anything beyond just straight master planning for a while in the Toronto office so I moved to the Bank of Montreal real estate division and did some- I was actually working in a position such as yours in some ways by- where I was working with architects, working on some preliminary design and managing projects. Certainly enjoyed that work for a while until the banks started winding down and found that you can get laid off from a bank just as you can get laid off from an architectural office! That was interesting.

[33:35:05]

So and after the bank you went where you are now?

No, I’ve done some other things since then which took me back more towards architectural practice but on the project manager side. And once and a while on the project manager I ended up having to design something, which I reminded myself that I could still design, although not to the level of KPMB or Moshe Safdie or Dan Hanganu, for example, but still keep my hand in that. But most of the work was getting the project built, dealing with- working with the client and so on and organizing the work done by architects and engineers. And then five years ago after a big of a drought doing freelance work for a while, the opportunity came up for- I’d been looking again for other opportunities away from architecture, as architecture’s been dying and that as I’ve been getting older, architecture’s been getting even older I think, fading away. So I moved to- looked into working for a manufacturer and got this position with Suprema, a manufacturer of roofing, air barrier, waterproofing products and marketing and promoting the products to architects, engineers and specifiers. So it’s not glamorous. It’s not Habitat; it’s not airport planning. It’s-

But it probably satisfies you in this stage of your life.

It’s interesting. Yes, yes.

A steady income.

It’s steady work. Roofing is not as dull as it seems. There’s a good reason why it’s the source of more litigation than any other single problem in building construction and we’re trying to solve that through- our products try to solve that problem and I try to remind architects of how to get themselves out of that problem by proper specs and using our products or using products that are good quality at least and making sure that everything’ s done properly. And so it’s been interesting, interesting times and we get to meet architects.

[35:30:00]