Football and Architecture

Once upon a time I used to brag about being a national level athlete in India. Through the years I’ve grown into a woman who doesn’t exercise regularly; occasional cardio and yoga, and an amateur racquetball match once a year are it for me. Yet the love of “watching” sports never left me. I used to be in the front cheering on the school and college teams of volley ball and football (US soccer), loved watching India-Pakistan cricket matches, Olympics were always big in my house, and of course, there were rare participations in badminton and hockey (US field hockey). I wasn’t into rugby, but quite naturally fell for US football while at Michigan. It is the competitive nature of fast-paced sports like basketball, soccer and football that enthralls me.

I am a big NFL fan now. I find similarities in football players and the way we work in our profession. I view the quarterback as the architect, the offensive line as the design team, the defensive line as the construction team, and the coach as the client – the one we all answer to. We work on each project as if it were a football game, each more important than the other. The better we do on a project, the higher the expected quality of our next project would be. Each year is like a whole new season of NFL and similar to the super bowl, the annual design awards recognize the teams that were able to achieve the highest level of design excellence. Although there is competition among the project teams, there is camaraderie between the team members. We constantly see players getting traded, friends and foes among teams, some rivalries, some players leaving the league, while the rookies get prepped for the arduous journey of the profession. At the end of the season, we all gather to face our problems and celebrate successes together.

September is the National Yoga Month. Look out for free yoga classes at local yoga centers! While I’ll “pretend” to practice lots of yoga this month, I’ll keep my fingers crossed for the big success for rookie Zoltan Mesko!