Friday, October 3

Wandsworth Town

The US Embassy will move to... Wandsworth?! The Americans have been on 1 Grosvenor Square in Mayfair since 1938 when the embassy moved from Piccadilly to accommodate General Eisenhower and the wartime administration; it was also the European headquarters of the US Navy. Following WWII, the Duke of Westminster donated the land for a memorial to wartime FDR. So the current U.S. Embassy building was constructed in the late 1950s, opening in 1960; it was designed by Finnish American architect Eero Saarinen with a large gilded aluminium Bald Eagle with a wingspan of over 11 metres on the roof. Not Eero's finest hour I should say. The concrete block is an eyesore in Mayfair and stands out like sore thumb. The grey cement molds in the winter and in contrast to the charming red-stones that surround her. It is also difficult to protect so make-shift cement blocks prevent suicide bombers from their insanity. On the flip-side, it is a power-building, bold and confident: "don't mess with America" she says. And now to the Thames Southside in a most assuredly non-glamorous London neighborhood. Yet another knock, Dear Sister. Another knock. What a moment to make such an announcement. (photo from the American Embassy website)

In some cheering news, Hummer sales are down 54.8% from last year, marking the sixth straight month of at least 50% sales volume declines at the hulking-stupid-gas-guzzler maker. Good riddance dude.