I watch a lot of HGTV with my wife. It's a sort of penance for watching sports -- the yang to my NFL ying. So I'm exposed to a lot of "design." I have watched dozens of designers re-design broken homes. And while they do make those homes work better, they seem to rely on lots of slick finishes and design parlor tricks.
We live in a new era of "design." Target teams up with Jason Wu and Phillip Lim. Project Runway turns fashion design into a competition. And every celebrity from Vanilla Ice to Jennie Garth has their own HGTV show.