Before we move on to Season 3, we must pause to remember one who has left us.
Mark Brendanawicz wore plaid with elegant ease and sophistication. Plaid, to Mark, was not just a fabric pattern, it was a way to present himself to the world, as if to say: “Here I am, World. Ready to plan your cities and design your parks. My shirt’s tucked in, my plaid is level and aligned…Here. I. Am.”
The subtle crosshatch on his shirts echoed the rigidity of the city streetscape and the gridlock of municipal government, but they were subverted by Mark’s playful sleeve-rolling, which occasionally exposed his true desire underneath: a blank canvas on which to plan. In this way, Mark was a true plaid pioneer, utilizing plaid not just to make a fashion statement, but a personal one.
But perhaps his most outstanding legacy is that of a plaid mentor. By proving that plaid can be sardonic and enhance one’s wry glance to the camera, Mark paved the way for future plaid great Ben Wyatt . They appeared in only two episodes together (2x23-24), and although they did not interact, Mark’s plaid proficiency was taken as a challenge by Ben, who, as we’ll see in Season 3, takes plaid to previously unimaginable heights. If Ben has seen further, it is only by standing on the plaid-covered shoulders of a giant.
Farewell, Mark Brendanawicz. I hope they appreciate your plaid in the private sector.
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