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How Do I Love Me? A Conversation Between Ego and Narcissism

At a design event recently, Ego made a not-so-surprising appearance. I caught up with it afterward for a short interview. Narcissism saw we were talking and nudged into the conversation. Here is an excerpt.

Let me count the ways.

Do you know the word humble?

Ego: Can you define your term?

Narcissism: I don’t understand the question! Are you referring to me? Have I done something to offend you? Why don’t you ask me about me?

Freud wrote that ego is a sense of self.  Yet he later revised his definition to mean a set of psychic functions such as judgment, tolerance, control, planning, defense, intellectual functioning, and memory. Does that definition suit you?

Ego: Oh, humble—yes, for sure that would be my middle name, if I had a middle name. But, please, that’s enough about me. What do you think of me? Narcissism: Let me answer that with quote from my dear friend George Harrison—he was very fond of me, you know. He wrote this song about me:

All through the day, I me mine, I me mine, I me mine. All through the night, I me mine, I me mine, I me mine. Now they’re frightened of leaving it, Everyone’s weaving it, Going on strong all the time. All through the day, I me mine.

You were invited to this design conference to talk about some of your influences. Do you have any?

Ego: My reputation is based on a lot of strikingly unique work and intelligent presentation.

Narcissism: I believe that all influences are within me. I’m influenced by my own work—impressed too. I derive great personal pleasure from the things I do, as I’m sure others get pleasure from them too.

How often do you Google yourselves?

Ego: Never. [Ping!] I get alerts.

Narcissism: Well, looking up my name is really extremely interesting. I see so many extraordinary things about me. My Wikipedia page is hugely popular—I get so many compliments.

Is there anything you’d like to say to young designers?

Ego: Follow me on Facebook and Twitter.

Narcissism: Better yet, follow me! My feeds are so much more interesting. I’m also tops on Pinterest! I’m pinteresting!

. Follow Steven Heller on Twitter! And don’t miss his live DesignCast—Researching Design History: From a Personal Perspective—streaming live tomorrow, June 27, at 2 p.m.

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