We knew this was going to be a very special week when we learned that one of the subjects interviewed for the lead story in the Times' Home & Garden section "prides himself on the orange tanning bed in his basement" and "goes to the James Bond-like control panel in the kitchen" to operate the ambient lighting within his 450-gallon home aquarium. This was the first, sobering hint that any modicum of good taste has flown the co-op; we break down the section here so you don't have to endure reading it:
—Number of colors referenced within the first three paragraphs of "Home Aquariums as Decorating Elements": 5.
—Best psychobabble design quote from the same story: “The whole essence of the house was to be push-button color-changing,” Mr. Wilzig said. “The apotheosis of that was to take the fish themselves and have them be swimming in whatever color you want.”
—Runner up: “We went on vacation to Fort Lauderdale and stayed at the W, and they had a tank with all jellyfish,” Mr. Jones said. “That’s like living art to me.”
—Instances of the word "aquarium" (not including title and captions): 38.
—Trippiest slideshow caption: See text block, above.
—Biggest case of How the hell do you sleep at night?: "A leaping iron dragon is suspended in the center of the room, while smaller iron creatures holding light bulbs in their mouths sit on the desktop, providing illumination." (From "In Italy, a Factory Becomes an Eclectic Home")
—What to say to not get laid: "The horses are at once ready to vanquish an arsenal or lightly glide across Swedish lagoons," he said. "They represent exploration and the opportunity to discover new worlds." (From "In Italy")
—Best duh moment: "Since then, she has made a wide variety of items, like luggage tags and Christmas stockings, out of recycled sailcloth, a process she refers to as upcycling." (From "Nautical Decor")
—Runner up: "Being at the beach or on the water is a time of leisure for most people,” she said.
—Biggest TMI moment: "(His first name is Edward, after his father, but he goes by his middle name, which was not inspired by “Gone With the Wind.” His mother is German, and Rhett was her second choice, when his father wouldn’t agree to Wolfgang.)" (From "Rhett Butler, Hardware Fanatic")
—Worst interview question/non-question (C'mon people! You're the New York Times.): "You don’t have the hands of a guy who works with his hands." (From "Rhett Butler")
—Yuppiest, most yuppified, yup yup lede: "Nadia Yaron, 31, left, and Myriah Scruggs, 34, right, the owners of Nightwood, a Brooklyn furniture and textile design studio, have created a pop-up shop at be@schermerhorn, a new condominium in downtown Brooklyn." (From "Nightwood's Pop-Up Store Opens in Brooklyn")
—Sentence with so many things wrong with it, it's too hard to count: "The 4,000-square-foot shop, which is open through Oct. 31, carries airy, conceptual pieces that evoke the idea of shelter (like the Cave, left, made of twigs delicately wrapped around sticks of plywood, $2,500)." (From "Nightwood's")
—Most egregious price point: $730 to $760 for door pulls. (From "Leather Door Pulls and Handles from Britain")
—Oh, wait, scratch that: $22,500 for a sofa. (From "At Bergdorf Goodman, Jean Boggio Furnishings")
—Most obvious proof that your world affairs knowledge rivals Sarah Palin's: "As Mr. Uehara explained, 'In a small country like Japan, even storing a flower vase can be a problem.'" (From "From Japan, Portable Vases")
—Best quote taken from a press release: "We wanted people to feel like they could complete their bath experience at Waterworks," said Barbara Sallick, one of the company’s founders. (From "Waterworks Introduces Bathroom Lighting Fixtures")