Wednesday, December 23, 2009
In our on-going effort to find a land use angle on the Tiger Woods scandal, I give you a recent article from The New York Times T Magazine. The writer describes a mansion Tiger and his wife (at least for now) are building in Jupiter, Florida.
Now I find it hard to believe that any country club would fail to admit the world's best golfer, no matter how non-WASPY he is, or how scandalous his current reputation. I think athletic achievement surmounts race, class and moral differences in our culture. However, the fact that these enclaves still exist raises interesting issues in our supposedly post-racial, egalitarian society.
On a side note on identity issues, for a great take on WASPs and their role in our society, I highly recommend Cheerful Money by Tad Friend. I read it at the same time as President Obama's first book, Dreams from My Father. Reading these two books together gives lots of food for thought on how racial identity informs our lives - and often, our settlement patterns. One of Friend's themes is what to do with the shambling family mansion in the exclusive neighborhood that few of the original WASP families can afford to maintain. Obama writes about his days of community organizing in one of the poorest, most polluted sections of Chicago. A stark contrast, to be sure, but each interesting and informative in its own way.
Jamie Baker Roskie