The Code of Eran-Urabi

(as sanctified by the prophets Szold and Schuster)


The Prologue

When Naudé the Sublime, Dean of the SAPians, and Vale, Lord of the DUSPians, who decreed the fate of the land and assigned offices in 10-485, assigned to Dennis, the Man from Gaul, the over-ruling progeny of Lynch, Creator of City Design and Development, dominion over earthly man (And Woman), and made him great among the denizens of that place, they made 10-485 great on earth, and founded an everlasting kingdom in it, whose foundations are laid so solidly as those of heaven and earth; then Naudé and Vale called by name me, Eran-Urabi, the exalted prince, who feared being untenured and unemployed, to bring about the rule of righteousness in the land, to destroy the wicked and the evil-doers, and to detect the code of the city; so that the strong should not harm the weak; so that I should rule over the land of Suburbia, and develop the land, to further the well-being of humankind.

Eran-Urabi, the prince, am I, making knowledge and publishing prodigiously, sublime patron of City Design, enriching my disciples beyond compare; who reintroduced the worship of the code and the exultation of regulation, and who revealed the secrets of development; who penetrated the secret salt cave of Cardona; who saved the inhabitants of Belmont and Centralville from misfortune, and fixed their homes fast in wealth; the princely king of the heritage regions, who subjected the districts of the Llobregat River to the sway of Sabaté, the great Planner-Creator; who spared the inhabitants of Manresa from the cardener; the sublime prince, who makes the facade of the city shine; who presents holy meals in the restaurants of Barcelona and Gaoming; who cares for his students in their need, providing for them a place of advice and learning; who conquered the combined armies of the Academic Council; made great the name of CDD; the royal scion who enriched all around him; the humble, the reverent (and irreverent), who laid open the mystery of the luminous table.  Beloved of Holly, am I.

When the Dean of Virginia Tech sent me to labor in the fields of Cantabridgia, to make implicit rules explicit, to give the protection of rights to the land, victorious in battle I did single-handedly bring about the well-being of the oppressed assistant and associate professors.  I did so according to these rules, which shall be encoded and reign forever more, from generation to generation.

Let future kings, who may be in the land, observe the words of this code which I have engraved on these tablets; let them not alter the law of the land which I have given, the edicts which I have enacted; my legacy let them not mar. If such a ruler have wisdom, and be able to keep his (or her) land in order, that one shall observe the words which I have written in this inscription; the rules, statutes, codes, and regulations that make up the law of the land which I have given; let those rulers govern their subjects accordingly, speak justice to them, give right decisions, and grant prosperity (and tenure) to them.


The Code of Laws

If you are accused by an Elder of being a practitioner and not a researcher, reply that you are a practitioner of research and a researcher of practice.

If an Elder should advise you to take a “U” turn, take two “U” turns. They will think that you (and they) are brilliant, but you will still be going in the right direction.

If someone should offer you a plane ticket requesting a command appearance, particularly in Jerusalem or Tokyo, accept and immediately amend the tablets of your curriculum vitae.

If you should be offered a McMansion in the province of Acton in exchange for your soul, beware of such false gods and seek the counsel of the Oracle of Szold or the youthful seer, pericles of Zegras.

If you should encounter developers armed with the Code of Duany, resist if you can and flee if you must.  Do not embrace false codes; you must always search to elicit and obey the one true code of the city.

If the sirens of Suburbia should beckon you with their eerie voices, seek shelter in the silence of the silver mountains of Silberberg.

If on your journey your feet become entrapped in the Swamp of Illuminating Clay, invoke the Sens(e)able Ratti for escape.

If the streets seem too wide to guide your way, do not hesitate to narrow them.  They do not need to be five ox-carts wide as the chieftains of Babylon or the purveyors of paving stones may decree.

If drawn into the growth versus non-growth debate, seek solace in the transect template.

If, while uncovering the one true Code of the City, the fossils of codes past reveal a palimpsest, literally ages old, fear no evil.  (Only the disciples of High Priest Stilgoe know what “palimpsest” means, anyway.)

If in doubt, close the door and write.  If this proves insufficient, repeat the magic incantation “Urban genetics” three times.


The Epilogue

The laws of promotion Eran-Urabi, the wise king, treated as though they did not exist. A more righteous code, and pious statute did he teach the land. Eran-Urabi, the protecting king am I. I have not withdrawn myself from these people, whom fate gave to me; I was not negligent, but I made for them a permanent and protected abiding-place. I exceeded all great difficulties and all challenges that the Elders put before me; I made light of them, casting them all aside.  With the mighty tools that deMonchaux and Schuster entrusted to me, with the vision of granite gardens that Spirn of Nahant did impart to me, with the deep knowledge of urban history inspired by Warner-the-Wise, with the formal wisdom that Beinart-the-Inscrutable passed down to me from Lynch-the-Creator as interpreted by the revered Tunney of Lee, with the secret intelligence of the low countries imparted to me by Alexander the newly arrived, and with the invention of planning-as-storytelling by Dennis the Man from Gaul (and Lexington), I have uprooted the enemy on School Council, have subdued the earth, brought prosperity to my family, guaranteed security to the inhabitants of my home; a failure in the process was not permitted. The great gods of Academic Council have called me; I am the salvation-bearing shepherd, whose staff is straight, lengthening the good shadow that my research spreads over the city. That the strong might not injure the weak, in order to protect the widows and orphans, I have endeavored in many community meetings to bespeak justice in the land, to settle zoning disputes, and to heal all negative externalities.  Enshrine these my precious words upon these tablets, below the image of me, as king of righteous and intelligent codes and regulations.  Witness, I now take my place as Advisor and Mentor to those who aspire as I have.