8 — Efi No
The Answer: Duct Tape
Welcome to Objectively, a series about people, the objects that hold meaning for them, and the stories they tell.
Leading with curiosity, the project is interested in objects as extension and embodiment of selves. We want to give space for people to reconsider their relationships with things, maybe acquiring new understandings of themselves in the process.
In this one, Efi No reminisces about a colouring pencil that has survived every move over the last 20 years, and what it has taught her.
Efi No is an entertainer of ideas, observer and explorer of all worldly things. She particularly likes to find relationships between very remote things and nuances between very adjacent things. Favourite drinks: whiskey, sparkling water, peppermint tea. In that order.
What would you be in object form?
I think I am best objectified by a roll of black duct tape.
Duct tape holds some pretty unique characteristics in my opinion — it’s a very simple and everyday item but of exceptional power. It is durable, waterproof, easy to tear, and therefore pretty standalone in its application range. Particularly the last point holds a duality of robustness and softness.
It’s used by athletes, engineers, and the everyday person. A must-have under your kitchen sink really, but never to be underestimated. Tape up a broken car window? Duct tape. Taping your mate to a wall? Duct tape. I could go on here for a while.
The hidden gem qualities of this simple roll of tape are quite versatile, and it really comes down to the use case and creativity of the user.
Now imagine you could be any object. What would you want to be?
This one is difficult. The nature of objects is often predetermined by their application and oftentimes short-lived. I think I would care little about the primary need this object fulfils, but rather be interested in the material, craftsmanship, and longevity of the item.
So in light of that, I’d aspire to be an aged three-legged milking stool. Once crafted from a gorgeous old tree, passed down to younger generations until bought in an overpriced antique shop by an owner that is actually looking for a plant riser.
And what is an object that holds memories for you?
I’ve been possessing a brown colouring pencil for almost 20 years that magically survived every move, and outlived many phases of my life.
When my best friend and I met, we were just kids. While I spent most of my time outside running around, she was an artist in the making. Neither of our passions were particularly accessible to the other. She had exceptional drawing skills and an amazing kit of pencils and pens in all sorts of colours. I was always in awe of her prowess and creativity.
Although I can’t quite remember how the exchange happened, her gifting me this colouring pencil from her box was the grandest gesture. She gave a very good crayon to a hopeless artist with arrested development in all things art.
Our lives have changed so much since then, and this pencil is a little reminder of the endurance of our friendship and the kindness someone can have for you beyond your ability and skill.
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