September 2021

Publisher's Note September - October 2021


The Great Recession of 2008-2009 resulted in the demise of many businesses, among them the non-profit publication that my wife Joanne worked on and my architectural practice. We suddenly had an unhealthy amount of free time on our hands. This was the world that DAVID was born into. Capitalizing on Joanne’s professional experience in marketing and advertising we came up with a plan. “Let’s take the publishing world by storm” was more her idea than mine. For me, doing DAVID was all about Joanne. From inception, this was her publication; I worked for her.

The time between our last publication and this September issue can best be described as a period of profound loss. The pandemic continues to make normal life difficult. A daily tally how many had got sick the day before and tragically how many had succumbed is ubiquitous. While COVID commands the headlines, other diseases continue to ravage mankind.

It is with a heavy heart that I inform you of the loss of our dear beloved Joanne - my wife, my partner, and the mother of my two children. While her death is not the result of COVID, we share the pain of this era of grief. The hardest lesson to be learned, following such a tragedy, is the need to find purpose to move forward. It is in this spirit that we relaunch DAVID, dedicated to her memory. She will remain the inspiration and guiding light for future publications.

I don’t know if this applies to everyone, but I found I had a lot of spare time on my hands during lock down. I will cop to the fact that an undue amount of that time was spent meandering the highways and byways of the net. During those solitary days, I developed an appetite for the weird and wonderful and my feed got populated by the strangest slices of varying subcultures.

One of these obsessions was YouTube videos about rescuing abandoned vehicles, some of which had not been on the road for decades and often had vegetation growing through their engine compartments. Oh, did I mention the vermin infestations? Never mind, I’ll spare you all that. Over many episodes, these diehard enthusiasts would tinker with this and that. To maintain viewer interest, they would get the engine to briefly turn over only to die in clouds of rust and gasoline fumes. Finally, many videos later with a new battery, petrol lines, filters, and other unmentionables, they succeed in doing the impossible. Belching ozone depleting quantities of exhaust fumes the beast comes to life. It is only then that our intrepid mechanics discover that the jalopy has rotten tires, suspension, and axels. Forget about brakes. I guess this will all be fodder for the successive seasons.

Restarting DAVID during COVID has been somewhat similar; What you hold in your hands is the product of our labors, sans the environmental pollution.

It should not come as a surprise that we would find this relaunch particularly challenging. Surprisingly, after the initial fears, we found joy remembering Joanne, feeling her presence and her sweet but firm encouragement. Looking now at the finished product, I believe that we’ve done her proud.

I wrestled with the decision to pen the above, but ultimately decided that you deserved this candor. As always please take care, protect yourself, protect others, and hold those you love close. Once again, we’ll see you in the racks. We missed you.


Max D. Friedland

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