Monocle 24 Section D is the overdetermined yet vague title of Monocle’s podcast on “design.” It makes the fatal error of engaging a screamingly gay host, Hugo Macdonald, with an equally screamingly gay voice. “Design” is already viewed as more than twee enough (lamps, tables, chairs, rugs). Assigning this gay a voice to the subject-matter trivializes it further, colouring it with Weimar-like decadence and frippery. With a presenter like that, “design” comes to be easily dismissed as mere decoration irrespective of its importance.

On the show’s so-called Canada special, an unschooled Macdonald attempts to pronounce “Dundas.” He spits it out as [ˌdʌnˈdass], with expected assibilation. (Listen for yourself [.M4A].)

The episode later attempts to describe a (“bespoke”) furniture shop confusingly named Avenue Road. Avenue Rd. is already confusing enough, and the company is actually legally named WYP Furniture Inc. This Avenue Road is located on “East” Avenue, Macdonald told us. It’s actually at 415 Eastern Ave. at McGee, a location I just walked past an hour ago without ever noticing this apparently highly significant furniture retailer.

I’m just trying to understand a lengthy podcast on “Toronto design” that fails to even note in passing this city’s obvious failures of design. And I sure as shit am not talking about icing on cakes.

Do you want design taken seriously?

Then decouple it from the twin stereotypes of decoration and effeminacy. (Now go back and read what I just wrote again so you can quote me accurately later.)

The foregoing posting appeared on Joe Clark’s personal Weblog on 2013.01.16 15:55. This presentation was designed for printing and omits components that make sense only onscreen. (If you are seeing this on a screen, then the page stylesheet was not loaded or not loaded properly.) The permanent link is:

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None. I quit.

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