Tuesday started like any other, each of us doing our own thing to make architecture happen around this place. Then something magical happened. It was 11:56 and the sun was shinning when Mr. Jeff Navarro showed up with 15 custom ordered burrito bricks courtesy of Chipotle. That's right they were free, and nothing tastes better than FREE food. Several groups of burrito connoisseurs huddled around tables and benches to enjoy their 3.4 pound foil wrapped bricks of meat, rice, cheese and beans...the latter ingredient made for an 'eventful' afternoon if you happened to sit next to a Chipotle Tuesday participant. Thanks to Jeff for all his hard work (putting a business card in a fish bowl) and Chipotle for the free grub!
Most of you have probably noticed the new gang of “toughs” that hangs out near the main entrance of the building. In fact some of you may have even been the innocent victim of a miss-kicked hacky as you ran the gauntlet into the front doors. We are “We sAck”, made up of Brian “Elf Shoes” Lefholz, Jeff “Finesse” Navarro, Brett “The Bruiser” Billingsley, and me, Tye “insert synonym for uncoordinated here such as, bumbling, graceless, heavy-footed, lumbering, ungainly” Brown. You will be happy to know that we have moved our crew into the handicap parking stalls, which if you have ever watched us for a moment is probably much more appropriate (see image). Despite our physical limitations, and as long as weather, work, and wives permit will be playing hacky sack during lunch, and all are welcome to participate and join in the mutual embarrassment that is hacky sack.
Honorary We sAck members include; Robert Wallis (“Blame it on the Shoes” Award), Dave King (“Most Improved Player” Award), Jack Paddon (“Way to Narrowly Avoid Brian’s Foot In Your Face” Award), and Leah Polcyn who’s honorary membership is under probation due to her performance of a controversial move that is outlawed in all 50 states according to NHSA (National Hacky Sack Association). Others have 'tried' with little success but none the less deserve a shout out...Terry Green, Jim Williams, Greg Tonello, Andrea Jaggers, Stephanie Scattini, and Amber Seevers.
Watch for more information on We sAck in the future.
The time has finally arrived...Violator Softball is back! With spring training behind us we look for our first victory this Friday at 7:20 p.m. at Rusch Field #2. A big thanks goes out to Coach Will Sandusky for organizing all of the WP hooligans and putting together a great squad this season. There's just something about the smell of fresh cut grass, the sound of a crisp line drive up the middle and the roar of the crowd. That's where you come in...we need a crowd! I think we had a total of 1 fan last year (thanks Mary) so come out and witness the incredible display that is known throughout the region as Violator softball.
A really nice thing about working for a large firm is being sent to design conferences in places you have never been before. Such was my luck when I attended Interiors 08 in New Orleans a few weeks back. Oh where to start? I learned a lot about traveling with carry-on luggage (something I had not done before), which cost me all but three of my toiletries. I strolled down Bourbon Street on the Friday night of St. Patty's Day weekend. Need I say more? The conference had fascinating seminars and tours and I met some great people. But what struck me most about New Orleans were the people and their absolute unwavering dedication to their city. Only 50% of the people have returned and the city still shows evidence of the 2005 "Floods" (something every local resident will correct if you say "Hurricane"... which they could have survived... had the levees held). There is anger towards the government and welcoming arms for the tourists and relief groups. The architecture soothed me. The music moved me. The stories will haunt me. And the city continues to beckon me back.
Thumbing through my latest set of architectural documents I couldn't help but think something was missing. I had roof details, waterproofing details, door and window details, etc.... After many late nights down in the archive I finally located the elusive detail. How refreshing!
Side note: Brand and type of beer is subject to change given the architect/designers personal preference.
I would like to congratulate Williams + Paddon, Architects + Planners + People and all my fellow employees who’ve helped in a fundraiser or graciously gave their time or effort for Sierra Adoption’s cause. The fruits of our effort have given homes to 201 children. All of whom now having the gift of a loving family instead of the hardship they were faced with when they were brought into this world. This justifies the “People” in our name in the way we involve ourselves with the community. Please see attached the letter and Annual report from our friend Anne Aune of Sierra Adoption. Thanks again everyone. Let’s keep up the good work.
The first Twilight Golf extravaganza of the year was a great success! Ten brave souls, two and half groups, were the first of the year to strut their stuff on the tee. Battling through bugs, the elements, and large smoke signals being sent from a nearby house. Yeah, that’s right, smoke signals. One of the houses along the side of the course had large clouds of smoke coming from its chimney blanketing the course so you couldn’t see. I know what you’re thinking and no the house was not on fire. But of those ten only two, Brian Lefholz and Bill Turner, found enlightenment through near death experiences. The first enlightened soul, Brian, was standing behind the head hunter, Amber Seevers, at a 15 degree angle which should have been enough to avoid any errant shot. But alas, this was not enough and as Amber swung through with a powerful “umf!” the ball was sent barreling into Brian’s golf bag only inches from missing his rib cage. As for Bill, his experience was a little less dramatic. Paul Walsh was having a tough time getting through the first hole and had landed his ball in a green side sand trap. As Paul was setting up and taking his aim at greatness, Bill happened to be walking along the back side of the green setting his bag down totally oblivious to the mighty stoke Paul was about to unleash. Then in a flash the ball exploded from sand taking aim not for the green but for Bill…luckily as everyone screamed in horror Bill quickly turned and the ball was caught in his golf towel. So, lessons learned from the first twilight golf evening of the year: if you want to learn how to hit your ball backwards talk to Amber, and if you want to avoid being hit or killed stay behind the person hitting. I hope everyone in the office will consider joining us next time, March 25th, for some golf, some laughs, and some enlightenment.
Violator softball is back baby! After a long winter break we took the field last week for spring training.Suffice it to say that we had more than a bit of surface rust to shake off (and we've got the bruises to prove it!)...especially those in the over 40 club. We welcomed back "The Hammer" Greg Tonello and added a few fresh new faces to the lineup. From the looks of things it's going to be an 'interesting' season. If we can keep our bruises and sore muscles to a minimum and actually make contact when we swing, we may just have a shot at mediocrity this season.
As a side note: The cartoon above was inspired by our own 'self-inflicted' captain James Engler.
Williams + Paddon Architects is pleased to be a part of the award winning Universal Technical Institute (UTI) team that recently won the Sacramento Business Journal Best New Industrial Real Estate Project for 2007.
UTI, a national provider of technical education for automotive, diesel and collision repair technicians wanted creative architecture for their first Northern California location. The modern warehouse building was designed to reflect the cutting edge technology and education that UTI provides its students.
In addition to this award, Williams + Paddon was honored at the Business Journal Real Estate Projects of the Year Awards as the Architects for the Benvenuti Performing Arts Center, Best Community Impact Project and for Conceptual Architectural Design for the Park Plaza, Best New Retail Project.
We are excited to announce that the Benvenuti Performing Arts Center received a Leroy F. Greene Award of Honor from the Coalition for Adequate School Housing (CASH). This statewide award program recognizes public education projects that are profoundly making an impact on their campuses.
It was also honored as the ‘Best Community Impact’ project at the Sacramento Business Journal Real Estate Projects of the Year Awards for its importance to not only the school, but the city and the arts community.
This technologically advanced theatre for the performing arts magnet program at Natomas Charter School is a signature facility that allows students to train in a wide variety of theatrical, music and dance programs. The project contains all of the features of a professional stage including a full fly tower. It is being hailed as the “most sophisticated theater in Greater Sacramento.” (February 29, 2008 – Supplement to the Sacramento Business Journal)
Per the request of our very own Leah Polcyn (Interior Design Intern & Secretary for Pr.Int.S) four W+P Go-Getters volunteered their time to participate in a panel discussion at Sacramento State University. The discussion was staged by the Sacramento chapter of Pr.Int.S (Professional Interior Design blah blah blah). The evening was a hit and the students definitely got more than their fair share of input from our W+P professionals Andrea Jaggers, Intermediate Interior Designer; Brett Billingsley, Senior Interior Designer; Amber Seevers, Junior Interior Designer & odd man out Brian Lefholz, Architect Intern. A few of the topics addressed included job satisfaction, creative freedon, and most popular, life after college. It was obvious that “the real world” is a concept that they struggle with so they were eager to submerge their minds in any information that illuminated what they are in store for. The evening was capped off with a visit to R15 where the panel discussed the highlights of the event over an ice cold lager and a game of pool… girls vs. boys… Amber and Leah triumphed, TWICE!! Way to go Higher Education.
While it seems the latest focus on everyone’s mind is getting physically fit and healthy, it came as no surprise that yet another challenge to get those bodies moving presented itself. It was at the suggestion of our very own fitness advocate Andrea Jaggers, to get everybody up to the snow for a fun and challenging day of snowshoeing.
While not everyone on the snowshoeing expedition did so to lose the lbs.; it was also a perfect way to help build up the endurance, while taking in the wintery beauty of the surroundings. Of course for me, the joy of capturing a photo or two for the W+P history books was motivation enough. Needless to say, it was a nice sized group that consisted of W+P employees and a few willing family members. (JTW, Diane, Paul, Claudia, Mark, Robi, Rose, Rich, Trish, her daughter Zara, Andrea, Brian L. and Leah.)
What was quite special about the whole excursion was home base happened to be Jim & Diane’s quaint, cozy little cabin with a beautiful roaring fire in the fireplace and a sampling of their wonderful hospitality of fresh baked scones to start our morning, followed by home cooked chili and chowder (Diane’s specialty), a fresh tossed salad and bagets for lunch. The funny story about the bagets is Rich (my husband) had a hard time keeping them safely tucked into his backpack as we hiked from car to cabin. Every time he would re-position his heavy load, the loaves of bagets would tumble out of his backpack. Finally, after four drops in the snow, we tucked them in a little tighter and they eventually made it to the cabin. The cabin was so warmly decorated & welcoming, and the beautiful view off the back deck was an added bonus. It was a perfect location to capture a few photos. Prior to our hike, we received a brief little history lesson (which we were quizzed on later) about the area and the cabin itself from JTW. For a moment, it was like attending a great field trip with your favorite history teacher providing all the interesting fun facts of knowledge. After the interesting history lesson, we were on our way.
We had more than a few interesting moments occurred while on the hike…
“The two best moments were Andrea sinking up to her waist and her tackle on Brian. “My dewatering stop was pretty good at that particular moment (aka – making yellow snow). My back teeth were starting to float.” -Mark Posnick
“Watching Andrea sink up to her waist…twice!” –Robi Yes, Andrea was at the lead and one miscalculated step landed her waist deep in the snow. It took Jim, Paul and Mark’s assistance to dig her out. On the return trip my husband Rich also miscalculated his footing but ‘Mighty Mouse’ Robi was there to save the day! The challenge to complete the hike to the top with everyone else seemed easy enough, my body communicated differently, so Claudia Walsh and I opted to pair up head back to the cozy confines of the cabin, where Diane waited for everyone to return. So, one might say that there was a great deal of team building and spirited camaraderie that also took place.
As if the workout for the day wasn’t enough, with Mark P. and Brian L. at the helm several of us in the group made a great attempt at shoveling all the snow off the back deck of the cabin. JTW supervised (with hot coffee in hand mind you) from confines of his cozy cabin. The heap of snow proved to be a bigger challenge than the hike itself… so we’ll leave it to Mr. Sunshine might complete that task.
I hear talk of a spring wildflower hike coming up. I am certain the beauty of the area changes with every season bringing another feast for the all the senses. Maybe all the fair weathered hikers will come on board for this next one. - Rose Cottle
Andrea recalls the day... “the shock of having to snow shoe in to the cabin... the smell of fresh baked scones when we walked in... the feel of snow falling softly all around us... slight panic at being swallowed up by the snowy earth... a winter storm looming in the background... looking back, to see how far we've come (in so many ways...) a last ditch effort at pushing our limits... laughing so hard I almost pee'd my pants... returning to the warm cabin for a relaxing glass of wine... not being able to taste it, because my mouth and lips were on fire from the chili... falling asleep soundly that night, with a smile on my face.” - Andrea Jaggers
Did you know that every year we throw away nearly 15 billion Alkaline batteries? In case you weren't aware...that's a lot! The genius of this product is that it gets rid of clunky charging units by simply fliping the top and pluging it into the USB port on your computer for recharging. It’s a standard AA battery which will fit into all your every day uses and is availible for around $18 for the pair. So, next time you need batteries just stop and think...do I really need the 'super value pack' of 100 Alkaline batteries?
One might say, the by-product of repetitive space articulation is further compounded by taking into account the pragmatics of value engineering. Beyond the horizon of the human intellect, the internal use adjacencies and circulation adds overriding three dimensional constraints to the final abortion. Above and beyond plebian comfort objectives, the treatment of the main façade must utilize and be functionally interwoven with the study of true fecundity in the state of the art.
Now you too can speak like an architect, with the “Do-It-Yourself Architectural Dialogue”! With this little jewel, you can easily compose 40,000 impressive sounding sentences. Never again will you feel like you have nothing intelligent to say.
Orals coming up? Simply remember a few select phrases and you can get out of any jam and leave the judges impressed.
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This year Easter Sunday is on March 23rd, but do you know the “rest of the story”? The calculations for the date of Easter are somewhat complicated. In the Western Church, Easter has not fallen on the earliest of the 35 possible dates, March 22, since 1818, and will not do so again until 2285. It will, however, fall on March 23 in 2008, but will not do so again until 2160. Easter last fell on the latest possible date, April 25, in 1943 and will next fall on that date in 2038. However, it will fall on April 24, just one day before this latest possible date, in 2011. The cycle of Easter dates repeats after exactly 5,700,000 years, with April 19 being the most common date, happening 220,400 times, or 3.9% compared to a mean for all dates of 162,857 times, or 2.9%.
The answer is pretty easy when you think about it. As architects and designers, we take ourselves very seriously. This is a good thing. We have immense responsibilities that challenge our sanity on a daily, make that hourly, basis. But that does not mean that we don't know how to have fun. The contrary is true, we love fun, we need fun to maintain some sort of normalcy in between the highly stressful challenges of our chosen profession.
We are also highly creative, every minute of every day. That's what we do and we're good at it. This blog started as a grass roots effort to capture a snap-shot of our creative culture. To showcase the thoughts, talents, and teamwork of the incredibly diverse talent pool we call employees. This blog is our outlet.