Joe Duffy Works Out, Steve Heller Makes Furniture

After last night’s Marchesas n’ montages fest tragically robbed Julian Schnabel and Janusz Kaminski of their rightful Best Director and Best Cinematographer statuettes for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, we felt in need of some serious cheering up. Enter Joe Duffy. In gym shorts.

Joe Duffy.jpgEarlier this month, The New York Times whipped up a Styles section trend piece on the growing popularity of group fitness training, whereby friends, couples, or strangers work out together with a personal trainer. And who did writer Abby Ellin choose to spotlight in her soft lead? None other than a certain creative director extraordinaire:

JOE DUFFY, a cross-country skier who skis marathons, considers himself fit and motivated. About three years ago he decided to focus on strength, balance and endurance. He knew his workouts would be more interesting if he had people to compete against. So instead of visiting the gym on his own, Mr. Duffy and his wife, a former marathoner, exercise twice a week with a group of seven to nine people and a personal trainer at 501Fit in Minneapolis.

“It’s an hour and a half workout, and if I did it on my own it would seem like three hours,” said Mr. Duffy, 58, the chairman of Duffy & Partners, a design firm in Minneapolis. “When I do it with the group, it seems like it’s 30 minutes.”

That last bit would have made a great pull quote! Once we had gotten our head around the concept of skiing a marathon (during which we’re sure Duffy thinks about the research he did for that amazing Bahamas branding campaign), we turned the page of the newspaper, only to find another Styles story, this one mentioning Steve Heller. (At which point we began to suspect the work of an AIGA medalist cabal.) But then we read on, to the part that described this particular Steve Heller as “a furniture builder, sculptor, and ’50s car fanatic.” He has mounted taillights from a ’59 Chevy Impala over the fireplace of his home and runs a shop called “Steve Heller’s Fabulous Furniture” in Boiceville, New York. So it turns out that it’s not referring to our Steve Heller. But then again, one never knows…just last Friday, the design guru showed off his legendary range, noting in The Daily Heller the existence of a museum devoted to Kool-Aid. To which we reply with an enthusiastic, “Oh, yeah!