close up of silk screened logo on hand painted sign
A Man Called Bucky by: Mary D. Cohen and Harold L. Cohen for: His Centennial Year Bucky was happiest in the classroom and the lecture halls. He loved young minds. He loved being a part of their search for meaning and a reason for being. His enthusiasm was infectious. Bucky generated a sense of wonderment, and his charisma nurtured everyone he touched. For some, he became a prophet, even a guru, a baba, a god. His writings form a landscape of his quest for understanding the order of his “Spaceship Earth” and his search for a universal key. His Dymaxion Air-Ocean World Map of 1943 (co-developed with Shoji Sadao), conveys the layout of a minimal distortion of the relative size and shape of land and sea areas of the world. In early 1995, we were delightfully surprised when invited to dinner at the home of an administrator of the Universidad Nacional Auténoma de México. Our host (a veterinarian and biologist), his wife (a professor of psychology) and extended family live in a series of Pease domes beautifully ensconced on a mountainside overlooking México City’s 20,000,000 people. Awareness of Bucky’s living experiences help illuminate the insatiable Bucky, who lived intensely for 87 years (1895-1983). In the middle of the 19th Century, his great-aunt Margaret Fuller, along with a group of American writers, formulated “Transcendentalism,” a philosophy based upon the doctrine that the principles of reality are to be discovered by the study of the processes of thought. It iterates that the intuitive and spiritual transcend the empirical. It comprises a logic that, they believed, was inherent in a unified universe. Margaret Fuller advocated the emancipation of women. George Ripley organized the utopian community at Brook Farm. Theodore Parker militantly espoused reforms in church and state. Henry David Thoreau held an extremely individualistic position, that a man must do what he believes to be right with utter disregard for the conventions of society and the laws of nature. He made an experiment in living at Walden Pond. Emerson, its chief proponent, set aside the authority of the Christian Bible, even the liberal Unitarian view. He believed in laws and conventions, was an opponent of slavery, and exhorted mankind to be self-reliant. R. Buckminster Fuller, “Bucky,” was a Transcendentalist. He was also, like his great-aunt Margaret Fuller, a zealous person with an insatiable appetite for learning. Margaret Fuller was an ardent feminist and woman of letters, founder and editor of The Dial, literary editor for The New York Herald Tribune, and translator of Goethe and Schiller. At a meeting of the Transcendentalists in Cambridge, Massachusetts, she stood and declared, “I accept the universe.” Amos Alcott, in an off-stage whisper said, “By God, she’d better.” While accepting the universe, Bucky challenged and questioned the gods of history and science. He made his life’s quest a continuous search for what made the universe operate. He explored all of Spaceship Earth. In so doing, he was able to find peace with himself. When Bucky was 11 years old, his father suffered a series of strokes that crippled him more each time. The father was unable to carry on his import business (taking him to Europe and South America) and was confined to his home. The family nursed the father, but no one did it more than Bucky. He would sit for hours attending his father, fanning him in the summer heat. He spent whole evenings reading to him. Within three years Bucky’s father had lost his sight and his mind. After four tortuous years, when Bucky was 15 years old, his father died (1910). Bucky’s father was placed in the family plot at Mt. Auburn Cemetery, Cambridge, Massachusetts. Later, his mother was buried there. In July 1983, Bucky and his wife, Anne Hewlett Fuller, were buried in the same family plot, alongside Great Aunt Margaret. Bucky was a man tormented with the memory of the crippling strokes which blinded and destroyed the mind of his father and, later, the death of Alexandra, his own first child. For four years he watched his father deteriorate. The loss of his father at that early stage of his life (at 15) and his own daughter’s death—from flu, then spinal meningitis, and then infantile paralysis when she was 4 (1923), left him with an inability to deal with sickness and death. He could not tolerate the emotional pain that accompanies the cycle of human life. He became an alcoholic. He contemplated suicide. He relates that time of crossroads at the shore of Lake Michigan. Instead, he determined that if he chose to live, then he must dedicate himself to ways of making the world work effectively. He never drank again. Thereafter, he refused to involve himself with the sickness and death of others. He avoided emotional involvement, even at a movie. If a film started to portray death, tragedy, or violence, he would insist upon our leaving the theater. The one area of investigation that he avoided all his life was the search for his own inner emotional structure. Although Bucky was one of few humans who came to understand the universe, he was less able to deal with his own emotional struggles. R. Buckminster Fuller II, Bucky, was born in Milton, Massachusetts, on July 12, 1895, the son of Richard Buckminster Fuller and Caroline Wolcott Fuller. Four generations of Fullers had attended Harvard before Bucky was expelled once and asked to leave a second time. Bucky was a renegade. The first debacle (1914) occurred when he was a freshman. He left Harvard for New York City, where, in a few short weeks, he squandered his whole year’s tuition and room and board money on the Ziegfield Star, Marilyn Miller and the entire chorus line. He entertained them lavishly. He played more than he studied. He was dismissed. When he returned home, his mother sent him to Canada to work in a factory. He remained a problem for his mother and his uncle who felt responsible for his education. In the next year, he returned to Harvard, but failed. Harvard authorities agreed that he was irresponsible and must leave. Books, people and life itself became his classroom educators. He never graduated from a university, but he has earned more than 40 honorary doctorates and many awards. In 1962 he was appointed the Charles Eliot Norton Professor of Poetry at Harvard. Bucky’s approach towards life was never really understood by his own family or by his wife’s family. In a letter from his mother, she admits her inability to comprehend him . . . Your letter and essay arrived safely. I think the latter is very remarkable and I am much impressed. I find it a good deal over my head but I am rereading it slowly and trying to digest it very carefully. I am most anxious to hear the result of it in St. Louis [an AIA lecture] and what Mr. Hewlett [his wife Anne’s father] thought about it. Do let me know. When and how did all this come to you? Caroline Hewlett Fuller from a letter of May 23, 1928. The Mr. Hewlett referred to is Anne’s father, James Monroe Hewlett, a prominent architect who had hired Bucky after they were married. Mr. Hewlett encouraged Bucky to, "pay attention to his own thoughts.” Other members of Anne's family considered Bucky to be a spendthrift with no ability to earn his way. One of Anne’s uncles wrote a poem about him which started, “Bucky’s found a 6-pence and has gone to buy a yacht.” Bucky was often childlike, huggable, and lovable. There were times, infrequent at first, when he became an attacking prophet. He was angered by ignorance and the bestiality of war. However, he never lost his faith in what he believed could be the outcome. He believed that we have the ability to make life work on earth by designing and speaking the truth. Like the continuous student that he was, he encouraged all others to question. He helped to launch thousands of people on their own path towards exploring the universe. The decision not to take his own life was coupled with a promise to dedicate himself towards benefitting mankind. He felt that conversation was chitchat. For almost a year, he didn’t speak with anyone, including his wife. He wrote notes. He refused to take a job or do anything unless it fulfilled his promise. He was true to the Transcendentalist principle: . ..Engage in nothing that cripples or degrades you. Your first duty is self-culture, self-exultation: you may not violate this high trust. Your self is sacred, profane it not. Forge no chains wherewith to shackle your own members. Either subordinate your vocation to your life, or quit it forever: it is not for you; it is a condemnation of your soul. Amos Bronson Alcott, from “Orphic Sayings” The American Transcendentalist, page 88 As Bucky evolved, he was protected and nurtured by many of his associates, family, and friends. His wife, Anne, used her family inheritance to support his work and their small family. As his work became recognized, young people idolized him. His attractiveness to others became a problem for him. There were moments when he believed that others were trying to steal his work. For years, he carried a special little black book with all of the mathematical formulae related to his geodesic domes which never left his person nor did he permit others to see it. This serious paranoia led to many unfortunate incidents with people who loved and respected him. He often started his lectures by saying that he was an ordinary man. He was not. He was one of the greatest thinkers in the 20th Century. He had a great love affair with the universe. He was a most active partner, open to exploration. For him, all other relationships paled in comparison. His search and dedication helped to make the universe visible for many of us. His questioning triggered our questioning. He gave thousands of lectures. He kept a detailed record of dates, places, and audience. He has left behind thousands of structures and hundreds of publications. For over forty years, our family has been privileged to have him and Anne as close members of the family. To our children, he was Uncle Bucky. At times he was our father. We willingly accepted the role as “adopted family.” As deep friends, we shared and nurtured each other. He was a surrogate father, and we fathered him. This special relationship included several month-long or longer periods of staying at our home. This enabled us to know and understand many of the pains that he kept hidden from himself as well as from the rest of the world. What was he? This dumpy, poorly-sighted man who towards the end of his life was almost totally deaf. An entry in Thoreau's Journal equally illuminates Bucky, as a Trancendentalist. . . .The secretary of the Association for the Advancement of Science requests me, as he probably has thousands of others, by a printed circular letter from Washington the other day, to fill the blank against certain questions, among which the most important one was what branch of science I was especially interested in, using the term science in the most comprehensive sense possible. Now, though I could state to a select few that department of human inquiry which engages me, and should be rejoiced at an opportunity to do so, I felt that it would be to make myself the laughing-stock of the scientific community to describe or to attempt to describe to them that branch of science which specially interests me, inasmuch as they do not believe in a science which deals with the higher law. So I was obliged to speak to their condition and describe to them that poor part of me which alone they can understand. The fact is I am a mystic, a transcendentalist, and a natural philosopher to boot. Now I think of it, I should have told them at once that I was a transcendentalist. That would have been the shortest way of telling them that they would not understand my explanations. Henry David Thoreau , 1817-1862 “Journal entry, March 5, 1853”Perry Miller, Ed., The American Transcendentalists, pp 1-2 Bucky will be recorded as one of the greatest philosophers of our country. Like Margaret Fuller, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Henry David Thoreau, he rejected the religious dogma of his forefathers and sought God in the structural systems of Nature. Like Goethe, he revolted against the science of his day and proposed his own mathematics and explanations of how the universe works. Unlike them all, he gathered his insights and designed new forms to help make humanity a more successful animal on earth. Bucky repeatedly claimed to be a former, not a reformer. In a letter to Kenneth Snelson (December 23, 1949) he reiterates his view: . . .as with all problems of a large nature, I am convinced that not all reform but new form, i.e. an environment of fundamental enlightenment accomplished by comprehensive physical transformation will most accelerate the elimination of the mental blockings of misconception. Bucky was a truly religious man. He believed in a universal good. His view againparallels that of the Transcendentalists: “Transcendentalism is predicated on the reality of the spiritual or religious element in man; his inborn capacity to perceive truth and right, so that moral and religious truths can be proved to him with the same degree of certainty that attends mathematical demonstration; and for the same reason, because they can be shown to conform to certain fundamental truths, axioms, which all know, none can prove or deny, beyond which we cannot go. Perry Miller, Ed. , The American Transcendentalists (Garden City, NY: Doubleday Anchor Books, 1957), p. 31 Bucky created his own God, a God who never joined a church, a god who never threatened, a god who was never obscure. The god he created was a god of excitement and beauty. A god for all the earth's people. At Bucky and Anne’s funeral, those who attended the chapel services were asked to read Bucky’s version of “The Lord’s Prayer” aloud. The Lord’s Prayer — Second Version This is the way I thought through “The Lord"s Prayer" on June 30, 1971, at the American Academy in Rome. B.F. Oh godOur fatherWho art in he evenOmni-experienceIs your identity.You have given usOverwhelmingly manifestationOf your complete knowledge,Your complete comprehension,Your complete wisdom,Your complete concern,Your complete competence,Your complete effectiveness,Your complete love and compassion,Your complete forgiveness, giveness and postgiveness, Your complete inspiration giving, Your complete evolutionary sagacity, Your complete power, will, initiative, Your absolute timing of all realization, Yours, dear god,Is the only and the complete glory! You are the universal integrityThe eternal integrity isWe thank you with all our hearts,Souls and mind — Amen. Harold met Bucky in Spring 1947. Serge Chermayeff, then the Director of the Institute of Design (ID) in Chicago, called a full faculty and student assembly meeting in the Old ID building on Dearborn Street. He introduced a man, he called Bucky, who was to talk about what he believed was the greatest creative design challenge of our lives. He started speaking at 9:00 am. We broke for lunch. He continued speaking all afternoon, and following a dinner break, he finished speaking after 10:00 pm. When he was through, the entire audience rose to their feet with tumultuous applause. Chermayeff went to the podium to announce that he had asked Bucky to join the staff in the Fall. That event, over 48 years ago was Harold’s introduction to Bucky. That Fall, a combined class of product and shelter design was merged to form a special studio with Bucky as the teacher. Each morning, from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon, Bucky talked about a variety of subjects. Each afternoon was spent on building models of some of his newly designed structures. Three years later, Mary was to experience one of Bucky’s 7-hour lectures. Already a personal friend of Harold’s and eager to meet her, he asked if she liked the lecture. She admitted that the first three hours were a thrilling learning experience, but the straight-backed wooden chairs and the multi-syllabic hyphenated abstractions conspired against real digestion of such complex information. Bucky decided that Mary should edit his writings. Arguing about his writings would have been a better description. In 1955, we left Chicago for Carbondale, Illinois where Harold formed the Department of Design at Southern Illinois University. During that first year, Bucky called us in great distress. His apartment had burned in Forest Hills, New York. Much of his materials, models, slides, photographs, and notes were destroyed. Harold spoke with Delyte W. Morris, then President at SIU, who was to become one of Bucky’s greatest supporters. Bucky was appointed the first Research Professor at SIU. He began teaching the summer of 1956 with the department’s entire student body at that time—9 students. Bucky conducted a rigorous eight-hours-per-day, five-days-per-week, eight-week design seminar for those Department of Design students. He returned each year for four to six month to teach and lecture. In July we celebrated his 60th birthday with a dome-shaped cake, and Bucky sang, “Roam Home to a Dome,” one of his ditties. Mary edited his first two books to be published since Nine Chains to the Moon. At first, Harold was unable to convince the University Press to publish the books. Both the Director of the Press (Vernon Sternberg) and the Academic Vice -President (Charles Tenney) felt that it was not English, not poetry, and furthermore incomprehensible. At Harold’s persistent urging, President Morris overrode the Director and the Vice-President and put up the funding for two books from the SIU Press: Education Automation (1962) and No More Secondhand God (1963). Bucky built his Pease Dome in 1960, and Anne then moved to Carbondale to live during the academic year. Anne loved parties and gladly hosted or attended. She excelled at making shrimp creole for Design Department gatherings, usually, at our home. Bucky always referred to Ann as, “Lady Ann.” Much later, Bucky wrote one of two forewords for A New Learning Environment (Cohen & Filipczak, 1971). B.F. Skinner, originator of Behavioral Psychology, wrote the other. Bucky’s was over 50 pages. Mary edited it to six pages. Skinner’s was 2 pages. It was left intact. We had introduced Skinner to Fuller in Carbondale when Skinner came to see our Experimental Freshman Year project (1962-1963) at Southern Illinois University. Bucky gave lectures in that project. He became excited by the behavioral approach to learning and continued to follow Contingencies Applicable to Youth (CASE), the next project at the National Training School for Boys, in Washington, D.C. The experiment in Washington, D.C. involved a total 24-hour living and learning environment in which the boys achieved and grew with amazing results. Initial motivation was provided with payments of money for correct answers and other evidence of academic achievement. Gradually, other reinforcements were added, and the immediate payments were deferred until the schedule of payments-reinforcements matched conditions in the outside world. One day, our eldest daughter Jano came home from junior high school shouting, “Uncle Bucky’s famous!” She danced through the front door and into the backyard, continuing to dance and shout with glee. She had seen his picture and studied about his domes in her Junior Scholastic reader. The children had always thought of Bucky as a member of the family, their sometimes babysitter. They remember his warmth and propitious stories, such as at Halloween, when he told them about the gnomes who lived in domes. He never wrote down his playful “little stories.” Too bad for the rest of us. Harold and Bucky’s lunches ranged in subject matter from reading his writings or other Persons, just having fun. Late evenings after we had finished working on one of his writing projects, we often played word games. Obnoxico was a favorite. In that we made up all kinds of industries that could become profitable. For example, we designed a fish tank with transparent plastic channels in it so that people could see fish swimming and bet on which fish would get to his destination first. We went on to design the graphics for the housing of the containers, the text for the advertisements. All of the steps involved in product design. We played “Word Reversals,” as in Herman Melvi1le’s Captain Nemo (omen): love/evol, mad/dam, etc. We played “Word Derivatives” as in Adam (the first man), Adama (earth, in Hebrew), Aten, the sun and the completed one; or Atum, creator of the self (both in Egyptian mythology) and Atman (the self or soul in Buddhism). “Break-up” was another game for finding different meanings from words-within-words; for example, atonement = at—one- ment. Sometimes Bucky illustrated a new “principle” of his making. His drawings usually matched their tenor. (see xerox copy) He dedicated each one to one of us. The Principle of Basic Irreversibility, called the Fuller Nequation To my old Navy buddy Harold who learned the difference between windward and leeward 5 gallons of T = 5 gallons of P 5 gallons of P 5 gallons of T The great Navy Invention: PT The great Indian Invention: TP Bucky loved games. The gaming concept certainly augmented his creativeness in his concern for inventories of human trends, needs, and fundamental behavior characteristics. He proposed a computer inventory which evolved into the World Game programs (1969) in which, . . .individuals and teams would undertake to play the World Game with those resources, behaviors, trends, vital needs, developmental desirables, and regenerative inspirations. The players as individuals or teams would each develop their main theory of hoixr to make the total world work successfully for all of humanity. Each individual or team would play a theory through to the end of a predeclared program. It could be played with or withoutcompetitors . . . . The objective of the game would be to explore ways to make it possible for anybody and everybody in the human family to enjoy the total Earth without any human interfering with any other human and without any human gaining advantage at the expense of another. R. B. Fuller 81 Kiyoshj Kuromiya, Adjuvant Critical Path. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1981 p169 The seriousness of Bucky’s gaming led him into sometimes pessimistic, but never cynical, anticipation of possible negative results. He admitted that mostly in history, “We emerge through emergency.” He was compelled to reach as many people as he could with his urging us to understand that, “There can be no planetary equity until all the sovereign nations are abolished and we have but one accounting system—that of the one family of humans aboard Spaceship Earth.” (Critical Path, page 202). Bucky suggests that World Game is “Anti-Obnoxico and commits itself to making Obnoxico and allied activities obsolete rather than attacking it directly.” (Critical Path, page 226) Those were fruitful years for all of us. Bucky and Anne had made their first lecture trip to Europe in 1961 where they met John and Magda McHale. John had authored R. Buckminster Fuller (1961), in the Makers of Contemporary Architecture series.When Harold was on sabbatical the next year, the Fullers urged us to meet the McHales in London. We went for tea and stayed with them for 8 days and vacationed with them in Greece — two weeks of solid talk-a-thons. A year later, Harold invited John McHale to Carbondale to join the Department of Design. Bucky, with John and Magda McHale, formulated The Design Science Decade: World Resources, Inventory, Human Trends and Needs (SIU, 1965 -1975, 4 volumes). Those years were productive. The first 8-story tensegrity structure was erected at SIU’s campus. In 1960, Harold received funding from the SIU administration for the filming of Bucky as he delivered his yearly one-month seminar on comprehensive design, at the Department of Design. Harold invited Francis Thompson, a New York Cinematographer, to collaborate with SlU’s Film Production Unit, then headed by Frank Paine. Under Thompson‘s direction, the filming was carried on three cameras, using 3 large 3-screen system which he had developed. Thompson created 42 hours on Bucky lecturing and demonstrating his mathematical, engineering, and philosophical principles. A selected recording of 14 hours in picture of the Fuller lectures was put on negative film. Bucky was awarded his second honorary doctorate at the University of Michigan, along with Dr. Jonas Salk. He was so impressed with Dr. Salk that he dedicated a poem to him. “A Comprehensive Anticipatory Design Science” (in No More Secondhand God, pp 84-117). Mary edited the poem more than 10 times. After each new reediting, he read aloud to us the new version. During these early years in Carbondale, he was fearful of dying young, like his father. He drove himself day and night to get his thoughts onto paper. It was during the days of non-electric typewriters and carbon paper. He scribbled, cut, and pasted and his secretary repeatedly typed revised texts. A great philosophical treatise lies in his poem dedicated to Jonas Salk. In the poem, he describes the slippable knot which slides from manila hemp to cotton to nylon. He points out that the knot is pure principle and although that at any time it is hemp, cotton, or nylon, yet it is none of those. Instead, it is pure principle, made observable by its color and by its chemistry. He points out that people are not their hair that we see, or their faces, or the color of their skin. People are pure principle. He was one of very few persons who understood these principles that permit the mind to transcend reality for flights into the Garden of Eden. A Comprehensive Anticipatory Design Science: To: Dr. Jonas Edward Salk . . . and the inwardly-shunting vectorial-chordings of unique frequencies and angles of the periodically self-interferred patternings, of the thus inherently associable events patterning identified as the “chemical elements,” are similar (but only very complexedly similar) in their synergetically resultant pattern behaviors, which operate at infra and ultra sensorially detectable frequencies, to the “sensorially detectable” patterning synergies known by man as “knots” “knots” as made by men in ropes through self-disciplined reproduction of principles of regeneratively associable events known by man’s sound-frequency patternings as “tying-in” of the “knots” and the simple principle of a slippable knot may be tied into an end of a manila fibre rope into whose other end has been spliced a cotton rope into whose other end in turn has been spliced a nylon rope and the slippable knot may be slip-forwarded from the manila rope to the cotton rope without in any way altering the knot's synergetic integrity of total pattern behavioral thus informing man that the knot is neither manila. cotton, nor nylon but only an utterly abstract "physical” principle in this casea precessionally regenerative physical principle of self-interferences resulting as inwardly shunting forces interacting as self-tied-up holding patterns ergo. as inherently associative patterning forces... and man is a super galaxy of galaxies of slipknots sliding-sum-totally along in a complex of reciprocal slip-knot principles.... And man’s “individual” complex-pattern integrities are in principle immortal for man is naught but a complex of associable patterns and as indestructible as the most abstract of mathematical principles. . . from “A Comprehensive Anticipatory Design Science,” in No More Secondhand God and other writings, pp 102-105 Carbondale, Illinois: Southern Illinois University Press, 1963 En route from Africa, after an exhausting four-weeks research and development project at the University of Science and Technology of Ghana, he flew to Genoa to meet us on board the Leonardo da Vinci. He was proudly carrying Time, Atlantic Edition (January 10, 1964). An Artzybasheff painting of Bucky on the cover showed his round bald head with enormous black glasses. Surrounding the gigantic face on supports were his various inventions: the Dymaxion car (1933), tensegrity structure (1959), domes (1951), a helicopter, toting a dome (1954), the Dymaxion dwelling machine (1946), closest packing spheres (1944). He asked Harold to read aloud the article about him and his many inventions. Along with his creative genius, The article conveyed his frequent wit and whimsy. He wrote a poem to the tune of: Home on the Range: Let architects sing of asthetics that bring Rich clients in hordes to their knees; Just give me a home, in a great circle dome Where stresses and strains are at ease. When dinner was finished, he lay his head on his dinner plate and slept. We had to awaken him so that he could leave the ship before we set sail that night. Bucky could sleep anywhere. Although his visible legacy appears in his inventions and his structures, Bucky lives on in the many people he triggered into their own explorations, including us. His greatness was in his understanding of the universe and in his vision of a world in which all of humanity is nurtured. He urged his listeners and his readers to know that, “The possibility of the good life for any man depends on the possibility of realizing it for all men. And this is a function of society’s ability to turn the energies of the universe to human advantages.” Anne and Bucky’s funeral was painful. One thing that lessened the pain was a story told by their grandson while we were standing at the graveside. Bucky had told Jamie the inscription he wanted on his tombstone. He pointed out that the big propeller on most large sailing ships is assisted by a smaller piece of equipment directly behind it that allows the big propeller to work and move more easily and efficiently. That smaller piece is called a “trim tab.” Bucky asked that the inscription on his tombstone read, “Call me Trim Tab.” That was the man called “Bucky.” a true transcendentalist, educator, engineer, inventor, mathematician, architect, cartographer, philosopher, poet, choreographer; cosmologist, humanitarian, humanist, comprehensive designer, and anticipatory design scientist; father, husband, uncle, friend, and an important participant in our lives. We celebrated Bucky’s 85th birthday in Buffalo. He had come to give a lecture at the School of Architecture and Environmental Design. A surprise party for staff, Students, and Friends of the School was held, initiating the scholarship fund in his name. On his 86th, we celebrated with him, Anne, and John Ciardi at the Chatauqua Institution where Ciardi was in summer residence and Bucky was to give a lecture. The grounds were off-limits to liquor, but we brought in a hit of contraband to celebrate the occasion. Anne liked her single pre-dinner luxury of a Scotch. Bucky sang his lunchtime ditty that he had composed many years before in Carbondale when he and Harold were dieting on Metrecal and reading together. Sung to the tune of “Melancholy Baby” To my darlings The Harold Cohen family Bucky Fuller Won’t you be my Metracaly baby Meet me on a low cal date Less of you and less of me is dandy Provided we are only losing weight Pounds will vanish from our waistline, baby Youthful clothes will once more fit. Let's lose every bit For instance where we sit Or else we may stay Melon-belly too. His lightweight and mobile Dymaxion 4-D House and Dymaxion Bathroom of 1927, and his three-wheeled Dymaxion Car, invented in 1917 and built for the Chicago World’s Fair in 1933 (he called it the “land-taxiing phase of a wingless, twin- orientable—jet stilts flying device”) illustrate Bucky’s ever-mindful determination to “do more with less,” culminating in the light-weight domes (1947) which continue to have new uses. These include: housing that can be constructed by individuals for principle and vacation homes, such as the Pease domes; airplane hangers, factories, seaquariums, aviaries, gymnasiums, Radomes on the Arctic DEW line (1955); emergency housing for Developing Countries, and extensive exhibition spaces, such as, the “Expo ‘67” dome in Montreal, the American Pavilion in Kabul, Afghanistan (1954 ) and “Spaceship Earth” at EPCOT in Orlando (1981). We took our granddaughter Jessica of 8 years to Magic Kingdom and EPCOT this winter, years since we first were there. Her favorite experience was a journey from the past and into the future in methods of communications, through AT&T’s Silver Geosphere Spaceship Earth. Now, there are three generations of a family love! Bucky would have been pleased.
Design at Southern Illinois University