have a couple of things on my mind this week. There's possibly no
more beautiful place in the city than the Lilly Gardens on the grounds of the
Indianapolis Museum of Art, especially in spring, when the flowers are blooming
and the sun is shining.
spent part of our Sunday there, admiring the beauty and the majesty of the
gardens and how even the most insignificant plant was a more wondrous creation
than any painting in the museum itself. The garden is free and available for
all the city to enjoy. I love that place.
love it more, though, if not for the iconic metal LOVE sculpture by Robert
Indiana that's placed near the entrance. I've disliked that thing for years.
Created in 1970 by Mr. Indiana, a minor figure in the Pop Art movement, its
simplicity and arrogance offends me in the same way annoying TV commercials do.
It seems the embodiment of 1970s cheapness and greeting-card superficiality.
when placed, as it is, among real works of natural beauty, that is, the
flowers, trees and birds of the gardens, its artificiality and banality make me
wish the sculpture would rust away into a heap. Then I read about the recent
efforts to restore and preserve it and the even more distressing fact that Mr.
Indiana has placed copies of it in public places around the world.
I guess we're stuck with it. My suggestion, though, would be to place it on
Ebay and sell it to raise money to bring more flowers and trees to the gardens.
Failing that, we should give it away to, say, Kokomo or Anderson, an Indiana
city that might appreciate it more. It just seems so out of place where it is.
owe many thanks to Justice John Paul Stevens, who announced his retirement from
the Supreme Court last week. Over the past 35 years, he's kept the country at
least partially safe from a complete conservative takeover of our society. His
great mind and persuasive voice have kept the current activist Court from
completely stripping away our freedoms. He's earned his retirement and possibly
the Congressional Medal of Honor.
me, his dissenting opinion in Bush v. Gore was the only thing that kept my
confidence in America's political system during that dark time. His angry words
in the face of a fraudulent election will live forever. There's not room for me
to reprint them here, but look them up. His opinion ends: "Although we may
never know with complete certainty the identity of the winner of this year's
Presidential election, the identity of the loser is perfectly clear. It is the
Nation's confidence in the judge as an impartial guardian of the rule of
you, Mr. Justice.
of the big stories last week was the return of Tiger Woods to the professional
golf circuit after enduring months of embarrassing revelations about his sex
life. I haven't written about the scandal because, frankly, I don't care. If a
billionaire wants to cheat on his wife, it doesn't matter to me.
history has taught us anything about powerful men, from FDR to JFK to Martin
Luther King to Bill Clinton, it's this: The bigger they are, the harder they
get. JFK had naked pool parties at the White House when his wife was gone.
Tiger Woods is hardly unique or even interesting. He likes, or liked, the
company of waitresses, porn stars and hookers.
private life of other people, especially public figures, only becomes
noteworthy when there's hypocrisy or illegality involved. I'm much more
concerned when predator priests molest children than I am with a superstar
athlete who strays from his marriage. As far as I know, Tiger Woods's only
promise to the American people was that he'd be a good golfer, not that he'd be
a good husband.
the modern media seems to demand that famous people caught in embarrassing
situations make public apologies and repentance, which in and of itself is hypocritical.
Let's examine the private lives of journalists and commentators. If we did,
we'd find the same amount of bad behavior and adulterous behavior as we would
with any other group.
I were Tiger Woods, I'd hold a press conference in the VIP lounge at Caesar's
Palace with a cigar in my mouth, a drink in each hand and surrounded by
floozies. I would then read a list of all the bad things I'd done, to the best
of my recollection, in extremely graphic detail: names, dates, positions, etc.
I'd say, "So what? I'm a billionaire. Do something about it." And the
press would shut up about it. Instead, we're destined for months and possibly
years of talk about the sex life of Tiger Woods. It seems like such a
tremendous waste of time.