This article was first published in September 2017.
I’m regularly appalled at the banality of post-match – or at least post-achievement – interviews of sports people still dripping from their efforts. As if it isn’t enough to hijack them before they’ve caught their breath, they are then interrogated by such lazy questions as “What does that win/loss/medal mean to you?” or “How does that win/loss/medal make you feel?”. An interesting answer may come in time and after reflection, but it’s doubtful anything meaningful will be offered there and then. I’m impressed these victims come up with anything to say at all, especially when English isn’t their first language. All credit to them.
In Rachel Cook’s somewhat ungenerous interview with my ex-boss Sir Richard Rogers in The Observer a couple of weekends ago, she describes his house in Chelsea as “mildly intimidating”. She goes on to say it “makes me wonder all over again if architects have any idea at all of the effect of their buildings on other people”. Well, as someone who has had the privilege of being inside that house, I can only say I found it inspiring, uplifting and an absolutely delightful place to be. As an architect, I was probably appreciative of the intelligence of the conversion and the attention given to meticulous detail, but I’m pretty sure I felt good on a basic human level too.