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Dec. 30 2009 - 9:43 pm | 1,519 views | 1 recommendation | 2 comments

The Perfect Metaphor: The Makers of the Times Square Ball Filed for Bankruptcy

Each year Waterford Crystal designs a new pattern for the Times Square Ball that drops on New Year’s Eve. The new crystals, triangular in shape, number in the hundreds and are installed alongside the permanent Waterford crystals that remain in the ball year after year. This year, the company made a Celtic knot pattern dedicated to the theme “Let There be Courage.” It’s a fitting slogan considering the year we’ve had, but it hits even closer to home for Waterford–who also owns Wedgwood China–since the company declared bankruptcy in January of 2009. It’s almost too painfully symbolic. As we put one of the worst economic years on record behind us, we celebrate by lavishing attention on a colorful crystal ball that is produced by a company that fell victim to the recession. I would not want 2009 to go out in any other fashion. We came into the year broke and we should remember that as we exit it, even if they say things are looking up.

Here’s a little bit more information on the Times Square Ball itself: The 2010 version of the New Year’s Eve ball for Times Square is a twelve foot geodesic sphere, which weighs 11,875 pounds. The ball itself is covered in 2,668 Waterford Crystals and is powered by 32,256 Philips LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes). And believe it or not, the ball is capable of creating a palette of “more than 16 million colors” and “billions of patterns,” according to the Times Square Alliance website.

Happy New Year everyone! See you in 2010.

via The Times Square Alliance.


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  1. collapse expand

    Yes, a sad commentary. However, it is not the end for Waterford – check out this link: http://www.irishecho.com/archives/archivestory.cfm?newspaperid=19846&issueid=655.
    Like the Phoenix we are in the USA, so will our Irish sisters and brothers be as well – the glass is ALWAYS half full!

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    I am a Brooklyn-based writer and editor covering arts and culture. I was an editor at Art & Antiques magazine, an editor at Picador USA, and an editor for a magazine about coffee and tea. On the best of days, I get to write about art, or work on fiction. My writing can be found on the Huffington Post, The Rumpus, and in Art & Antiques, Art in America, Tin House, Willamette Week, San Francisco magazine, Food Network Magazine, and Fresh Cup magazine. I also write about and promote the arts for Columbia University in New York.

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