I don’t like Melania’s new Rose Garden. On the other hand, I’m not sure it is her Rose Garden. I know, I know: The press releases said the “restoration” of the R.G. would be overseen by her, but I’m not buying it.
We’ve all heard the stories. She spends most of her time in her parents’ house in Maryland, and who can blame her. I’m sure the terms of her prenup require her to show up at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue from time to time, and maybe even to smile and wave, but we’ve all seen the photos, too. Even when she leaves the stilettos in her closet, she looks as comfortable in a garden as she very likely looks in her husband’s bed, assuming she’s occupied it even once since Barron was born.
(A White House Pilates studio, design and construction overseen by Melania? That I could believe.)
So my guess is, overseeing the Rose Garden overhaul consisted of attending some meetings, nodding over the plans and saying, “Mek it so” before running back to Maryland. Still. Her name is on the project, so she has to take the credit/blame for it.
I noted on Twitter that the comparison photos circulating aren’t entirely fair. The Befores feature tulips and flowering crabapple trees, which means they were taken in spring, and the Afters have the slightly burnt look of a garden in late summer. Still, we can notice some things. I approve of what looks to be lavender planted here and there among the roses, but I can’t approve of the roses, which are all white, from what I can tell. I hate one-color flower beds. A garden should be about contrasts and comparisons and for the love of God, seasons. Roses flower in June, but spring in D.C. really begins in March/April; what are we to look at until then? Did the First Lady take reporters or photographers on a tour, explaining why this in this bed, what that there, etc?
Don’t be silly. She doesn’t do that sort of thing. She walks, she poses, she demonstrates why she was never much of a model and lets Twitter do what it will.
The new garden looks very French, i.e. boring. Symmetrical, same-same-same, more symmetry, and a hard-surface walkway so the stilettos don’t sink. I prefer the English model — riots of color, a surprise around every corner, a hidden nook for sitting and enjoying the bees and the breeze. Of course, a garden designed for holding public events can’t be like that, but it can be more interesting than showing the same thing in every sightline.
Here’s something I read once: Tulips are profoundly middle-class flowers. I’m sure Melania, a sex worker who rose higher in the world than she probably ever dreamed, wants nothing to do with anything middle-class.
OK, enough about the goddamn Rose Garden.
Census-taking continues to improve; I’m getting better and faster at it. Last night I encountered a group of four young men making a movie. The film is called “Rent Due” and, they said, is about four young men trying to hustle up the rent. I told them they had everything they needed to be real filmmakers — plenty of bottled water and a bong. They laughed, and I left. Karen out.
And now Wednesday gets underway. Karen out again. Have a good one.