lexicalia - KYGL

OT née H, a.k.a. Grouch, turned The SYborg onto the work of KYGL—now apocryphal but rumored to have been a band of rogue Columbia and Cooper Union students. In 1997 they released  A KYGL How-To Guidebook for Urban Objects. Inclusion of KYGL materials in lexicalia attests to their continued cogency and serves as a testament to the guidebook's decisive influence on The SYborg.

Measuring 5 1/2 x 4 inches,  A KYGL How-To Guidebook for Urban Objects is itself an urban object. Apart from its slightly thicker cover, it consists of thirty-two pages of text and graphics. A handy ruler is printed on the front. The back is a punch-out foldable die: "*Fold box with dots on the inside to keep specimens of Urban Ecology / Or just use the die in the event of an important decision, or a tie-breaker." Printing and paper were "generously donated" by * and *, respectively.

Most of the guidebook's text and graphics relate to alphabetized entries such as Job Interview and Poodle. Users of the guidebook can fill accompanying "field notes" boxes with their own observations apropos each entry. Some contents refer to the guidebook itself; for example, 'this book belongs to' form, expense report, fraction-decimal conversion chart, calendar, and space for notes and pictures of additional urban objects. Some contents refer to KYGL per se; a scrawled message from the guidebook's creators, "Keep Your Guns Loose," clarifies their acronym. Rumor has it that four of Grouch's knuckles are tattooed with 'K', 'Y', 'G', and 'L'.

KYGL's mission/editorial policy diverges from The SYborg's, but two particular sentences call for citation: "

Knowledge of both myth and material are key to the use of objects in the city: the Statue of Liberty stands as a mass of bronze and rivets as well as the most enduring answer to the question 'how to accessorize Manhattan?' The mystique of the danceclub is as vital to its operation as its interior design.
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revised 6/22/01