Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss

Kate Canterbary | You Know You’re Sleeping with an Architect When…

October 22, 2014

Architects are special creatures. They are cut from a cloth that’s all their own, and lumping them in with businessmen, doctors, or lawyers is to miss the nuances that make architects so fascinating.

In all things, they balance art and science, instinct and creativity. They tend to be highly articulate and attend to fine details, and bring deliberate thought to all of their decisions, and those are delightful quirks.

Here are a few more snippets from Matthew Walsh, and how you’ll know when you’re sleeping with an architect:

1. They state their opinions as fact. It comes from years of defending their reasoning and advocating their designs with loads of research, and they need someone who can argue right back.

“”The load on this structure”—I pointed to the roof—”is causing extensive stresses and deformations on the internal supports. The walls, the pillars. And I’d bet anything the foundation has deteriorated beyond repair. A strong gust and this place is coming down. I want you fifty feet away, Miss Halsted.” I passed my fingers down the stone column for emphasis, a trail of sand and pebbles trickling to the ground.

“I’m only Miss Halsted inside the classroom. Call me Lauren.” Her smile was serene, yet wholly impatient. “Are you sure?”

“I make a point of knowing safe structures.” I wanted to drag her across the street, lock her in the car, and then…well, those interests weren’t part of a standard consult.”

2. They’re used to getting their way. Architects typically rank right up there with doctors and lawyers as highly knowledgeable people, and people who don’t need to be told how to do their jobs well. They also tend to be crazy-smart, and those big brains are weapons of mass seduction.

“”Considering I’m the guy who figures out how to ignore the laws of physics on a daily basis, I’m not in the business of saying no very often, especially not to beautiful women.””

3. They believe in order and structure. Architecture is grounded in thorough preparation and highly detailed planning. Think about it: when was the last time you saw an architect roll up at a construction site and say, “Let’s try it this way, and if that doesn’t work, we’ll figure something else out”? That happens just about never, and we’re all quite thankful for that.

“Perhaps my favorite Walshism—biting and growling aside—was the way he and his siblings made lists everywhere, all the time. They couldn’t run to Dunkin Donuts for an afternoon coffee without a neatly written list, and they talked that way, too.”

4. They throw archi-speak into date night conversation. Architects possess a language all their own, and if you spend much time with them, you’ll become wise to juxtaposition, unresolved plan geometries, and chaotic roof forms.

“”Like I said, I don’t see it as balance. It’s about the fulcrum.”

I shook my head, not following his reference.

“A fulcrum is the point where a lever rests, is supported, and pivots. Think about a seesaw. It’s just a lever positioned over a fulcrum. Force on either side pivots the lever. On a seesaw, the fulcrum is always in the same place—the midpoint. But in life, and other mechanical applications, the fulcrum moves. Sometimes it’s far to one side because force is exerted there. That’s been my life for just about a decade now. There are days, sometimes a lot of days, when I hate it. But I mostly love it.””

5. They don’t mince words. Whether it’s their linear thinking or the belief they’re always right, they tend to be direct. They’re also up-front about some of their naughtier interests.

“We work too much and neither of us has a life. We covered that last night. Doesn’t have to be drinks. Maybe just my cock in your mouth, and just because you want to.”

6. They show off. Architecture requires years of coursework, apprenticeships, testing, and more coursework, and they love flexing those intellectual muscles.

“You did that in your head.” She pointed at the number. “I didn’t see you write anything down, or use a calculator.”

Watching Lauren’s eyebrow arch, I chuckled and slipped my hands into my pockets. “Well, yeah. It’s mostly addition. Some multiplication.”

7. They show off even more…and take pride in their craftsmanship. Architects are experts at designing structures, but that doesn’t mean they all know their way around a toolbox. Matthew Walsh’s skills know no limit, and he doesn’t hold back in this text message exchange:

Lauren:  you think your desk can hold us? If it’s anything like the desk at your place…

Matthew:  I built it. It holds over 1000 pounds.

Matthew:  So, yeah.

Matthew:  if given the option, I’d take you back to my place and bend you over the dining room table.

Matthew:  or any other surface. Several come to mind.

8. They want to forget about all about architecture and get lost in someone special.

She was breathing hard, her chest heaving against mine and her cheeks flushed. “Please tell me my building didn’t collapse or you found a tyrannosaurus skeleton or some other ridiculous thing.”

I rolled my eyes.

“Would you shut up about your fucking building for a minute and let me kiss you?”

I backed her against the wall, yanking her up on her toes, kissing her like we were alone in this terminal and there was nothing else but her, and I felt wild. It was raw and demanding and urgent, and if it weren’t for that tiny, obnoxious corner of my brain and its incessant reminders not to rip her clothes off in an airport, I would have been inside her by now.

There’s much more to uncover about my favorite architects, the Walshes. Be on the lookout for Matthew in UNDERNEATH IT ALL, arriving October 21, and Patrick in THE SPACE BETWEEN, arriving November 18.

About Kate Canterbary

Kate doesn’t have it all figured out, but this is what she knows for sure: spicy-ass salsa and tequila solve most problems, living on the ocean–Pacific or Atlantic–is the closest place to perfection, and writing smart, smutty stories is a better than any amount of chocolate. She started out reporting for an indie arts and entertainment newspaper back when people still read newspapers, and she has been writing and surreptitiously interviewing people—be careful sitting down next to her on an airplane—ever since. Kate lives on the water in Rhode Island with Mr. Canterbary and the Little Baby Canterbary, and when she isn’t writing sexy architects, she’s scheduling her days around the region’s best food trucks.

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