It’s that time of the year when everyone braces themselves for the onslaught of lazy and quotidian sub-corporate Christmas cards from other architects and consultants using it as an opportunity to remind you that they exist. Hey, it’s just something else to use as a marketing opportunity. Is anyone, really, pleased to get these?
It reminds me of why I finally realised I had to quit my previous practice – seeing what, in my absence on holiday in Sydney, my now ex colleagues sent out in one ubiquitous vomit – yet another one of those unthinking vacuous cards that the architect profession does so well – a few pics of what they’ve been up to in the year, and then those awful signatures from each member of the office.
How did it come to this? Architects, if nothing else, always have to try to go beyond the obvious, and yet – we always default to the same old bollocks at Christmas time, which is either pictures of built work, or a ‘clever’ constructional thing. There’s possibly something else, too – but they’re always, always self promotional, and never actually contain any Christmas goodwill.
It’s the signatures, I think, that are the worst thing – each person making that casual yet cynical generic squiggle – going through the motions, yet not actually giving a shit about who the card is for. Each awful signature means so little, and yet says so much, about how little they care.
I think nowadays one of the few things that really is the personal and the specific. If a company that I’m supposed to know well enough to receive a Christmas greeting from really can’t be bothered to try just a little bit, and instead, catch me along with the rest of their contacts in their ubiquitous annual spam-fest with a whole lot of unthinking, unfeeling and sardonic feculence masquerading as Christmas cheer, well, that feels a little contemptuous.
Happy Holidays y’all.