A standard joke in mathematics illustrated below ‘A topologist can’t tell a coffee mug from a doughnut’.
A standard joke in Romanian communist building industry ‘A builder can’t tell a straight wall from a leaning, curving, waving one and neither does he care’. I honestly believe the Leaning Tower of Pisa is the work of a Romanian communist builder who traveled back in time.
We do love science fiction literature, one of our favourite stories is ‘…and he built a crooked house‘ by Robert A. Heinlen.
The story is about a mathematically inclined architect named Quintus Teal who has what he thinks is a brilliant idea to save on real estate costs by building a house shaped like the unfolded net of a tesseract.
We never thought we will end up living in a crooked house. No two walls were parallel, ceiling and floors are not parallel, every room here was an irregular quadrilateral. The builders probably started their work day with a breakfast punctuated with shots of the local hooch – tzuica. It takes the edge off, and makes for very organic structures of sweet sloping ceilings and leaning walls.
There were some hints were in for interesting times – the floor tiles did not line up to the walls, ceilings heights seems to vary….pictures were hanging away from the walls (gravity really is a bitch!)
First problem was the kitchen, the cabinet makers were measuring for the new cabinets and scratching their heads. Measure again, more scratching, more calculations….
Since cabinets nowadays are made by CNC machines, straight angles and edges are the norm, unfortunately for us. In the end they managed to make a crooked kitchen that looks right.
After ‘let there be light‘ the next task was ‘let there be straight angles’. Fixing the gyprok sheets to the existing walls to compensate wasn’t easy, especially when there is no reference point. Everything was crooked.
Lasers were involved, lots of maths and swearing in different languages.
The 3-4-5 rule almost worked…almost.
The result of all that- we still live in a crooked house! The difference is one can’t tell anymore.
Taking advice from the good architect’s book we planted ivy along the house. That should fix it!