Intentional Observation: Rust

This week I helped out the economy by hiring the local HVAC (that’s heating, ventilating and air conditioning for those who might not know) guys. Our furnace was on the fritz, and we ended up needing a new heat exchange. Thankfully the part was much less than our HVAC guys expected, and came in a day earlier as well.

I kept the old heat exchange to mess around with or take to the metal recycling guys on Main Street. When I set it down on the driveway to open the garage door, rust chips rained out of the S-shaped ducts.

Rust chips

It was rust that doomed the part in the first place. The exchange, the guts of a furnace, was pocked with holes. The chips that fell out of said guts, however, create a beautifully textured and colored pile on a driveway.


About pcNielsen
Paul Nielsen founded The Aesthetic Elevator late in 2005. He owns a piece of paper, located somewhere in his house (not on the wall), stating that he earned a B.F.A. from the University of Nebraska around about 2001. While there, he studied studied architecture, graphic design and ceramics, graduating with a degree in studio art. Paul presently serves as communications manager for a small non-profit doing their print design and marketing. He spends as much time sculpting in his studio as possible — which is not nearly enough. Visit his website at

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