I was going to write an April Fool’s Day piece, but that’s a lot harder than it might seem this spring, and likely in bad taste. In the spirit though, I looked up its origins on Wikipedia. The first reference was to Chaucer, who is said to have called the day March 32nd. I’ve felt the same way sometimes, waking up on a snowy April 1.
Wikipedia went on to talk about traditions in the UK, and then in the homeland of my mother’s people, Scotland. Not suffering fools gladly, the Scots traditionally refer to the day with a name that, spoken, sounds like the death rattle of a plague-ravaged badger—Huntigowk Day. Translated, that means “hunt a fool day.” Wikipedia then describes the Huntigowk Day traditions of every other European country except for that of my father’s people, the Germans, who evidently decline to take part in anything humorous.
What’s all that got to do with green building? Nothing, really, although it does have to do with the human condition, which is not great at the moment. Most people I know are under government orders to stay at home to minimize the spread of COVID-19. Most of my friends and acquaintances are also either able to work from home or they’re in an “exempt” industry such as construction. Taking full advantage of that exemption, my partner and I have been working every day, keeping our distance from other people to the degree we can. Working on New Yorker’s second homes in the hinterlands of western Connecticut, it’s not like we see a lot of people most days in any event. The owners of our current project, for example, are happily quarantined in France and in no hurry to come home.