Seen and Heard

Author: Ed Cohen

Live! With Regis and Kelly was live from Notre Dame on October 24. Regis ‘53 was here, but Kelly Ripa co-hosted from the show’s regular studio headquarters in New York City. The day before the broadcast Regis performed a concert to benefit South Bend’s Center for the Homeless. Tickets weren’t cheap—$30 for the general public and $100 for preferred seating—but the show sold out the 900-plus-seat concert hall of the new Marie P. DeBartolo Center for the Performing Arts. That raised nearly $80,000 for the homeless center, according to the center’s director. Regis sang selections from his new CD of standards, When You’re Smiling, backed by a 22-piece pick-up orchestra consisting of 14 Notre Dame students and eight local professionals. . . . . The Mendoza College of Business’s MBA program jumped five positions into the No. 24 spot on BusinessWeek magazine’s biennial survey of the nation’s top 30 business schools. . . . Actor Martin Sheen told the Washington Post that the creators of NBC’s_ The West Wing_ made his character, President Josiah Bartlet, a Catholic because he, Sheen, is a Catholic, and they made him a Notre Dame grad “because I’m nuts about Notre Dame.” . . . A few people have been heard referring to the new combination police station/post office adjacent to Stepan Center—designed in the same collegiate gothic style as all recent additions to campus—as “Castle Rex.” That’s a reference to Security/Police Director Rex Rakow, who has his office there. The _Scholastic_’s Judgment Calls column earlier this year gave an ambivalent horizontal arrow to “Campus buildings that look like castles.” Wrote the editors: “While we love that our new buildings contribute to our image as a Catholic Disney World, do we really need a security building/post office that Prince Charles could call home?” . . . The City of South Bend has reportedly filed a lawsuit against the owners of the Turtle Creek Apartments, saying they are overlooking underage drinking, public intoxication, indecent exposure and other illegal activities. Turtle Creek, just east of campus, has been put up for sale. Asking price: $12.25 million. . . . The old greenhouse behind Haggar Hall was demolished in late September to lay new chilled-water lines from the physical plant. Built in 1949, the greenhouse was the first construction project overseen by Father Hesburgh after he was appointed executive vice president. The Jordan Hall of Science, under construction next to the Joyce Center on Juniper Road, will have its own greenhouse. . . . The “Gay? Fine by Me” shirts were back en masse November 17. Hundreds of students have donned the bright orange T-shirts on selected days the past two semesters. The demonstrations come in response to the Princeton Review’s guide to the nation’s Best 331 Colleges accusing Notre Dame of having the country’s most homophobic campus. This time organizers also erected a closet out on the South Quad so that people could “come out,” although not necessarily to reveal their sexual orientation. The Observer reported that one female student came out of the closet declaring herself “one hungry, anal-retentive accounting major.” . . . One of those notoriously unscientific polls posted at the website asked, “Seriously now . . . gays at Notre Dame: fine by me or not fine by me?” Of the nearly 4,000 votes cast as of November 20, “not fine by me” led 53 to 47 percent. At one point several weeks earlier, the vote had been 80-20 the same way. . . . Though it rates Notre Dame as homophobic, the Princeton Review says Notre Dame does have the best fans of its sports teams. . . . For the first time in memory, The Observer has no student-drawn comic strip. According to the paper’s editor, the editorial board received submissions but didn’t think any were good enough. . . . Unknown vandals knocked down most of the 1,200 small white crosses planted on the South Quad by the campus’s Right to Life group in mid-October. The crosses are set out annually in the form of a Cemetery of the Innocents to symbolize the roughly 3,600 abortions the group says are performed daily in the United States. The display usually is set up once a year for a couple of days, but this year, because of the vandalism, it reappeared a month later. . . . Edmund R. Haggar Sr. ‘38 of Haggar slacks and Haggar Hall fame died in late September at age 88. He was a Life Trustee of the University, first elected to the board in 1976. On behalf of the Hagggar Foundation he and his brother Joseph made a $750,000 gift to the University in 1972 in honor of their father. The gift made possible the renovation of Haggar Hall, which up until then had been known as the Wenninger-Kirsch Building. . . . Home run king Hank Aaron attended the home football game against Purdue in October as the guest of Frank Belatti ’69 and his son, Greg, a junior. The senior Belatti, chairman and chief executive officer of AFC Enterprises, which owns the Popeye’s and Church’s chicken restaurant chains, is a member of the business college’s advisory council. His company is based in Atlanta, where Aaron played most of his career, and the two became acquainted through work on nonprofit projects. A son from a family living in a Habitat for Humanity house sponsored by AFC Enterprises and built next to the Atlanta Braves’ former stadium is a freshman at Notre Dame this year. . . . Every day The Observer carries a man-on-the-street-type poll with brief responses from six students. On October 6, the Question of the Day was, “What’s your prediction for the football game this weekend?” The printed responses included “From what I hear I wouldn’t want to get too sick there” and “As long as the cough syrup remains unguarded, a 10.” Those responses were to a different question, “What do you think of Health Services?” . . . Naval Lieutenant Ryan O’Connor ‘02, back on campus for the football game against Michigan in September, suffered fatal injuries at night after the game when he was struck by a car as he ran across South Bend Avenue east of campus. The accident happened around 3:30 in the morning after he and friends left a bar. Tests later showed he was intoxicated. The former Siegfried Hall resident was on a two-week leave after serving six months aboard a ship deployed to the Middle East. He ran into the path of a car driven by a Saint Mary’s sophomore. The death was ruled an accident, but the driver was ticketed for having consumed alcohol as a minor. . . . Dean Eileen Kolman is retiring at the end of this academic year after 15 years as head of the University’s celebrated First Year of Studies program. . . . A football weekend at Notre Dame is the fifth-best such experience one can have, according to the campus-newspaper insert Sports Illustrated on Campus. No. 1 in the magazine’s Best College Football Weekend rankings was Tennessee. Working in Notre Dame’s favor: “Students are as likely to attend home games as they are their own graduation.” But: “South Bend is one dead town—and Chicago isn’t as close as you think.” . . . A sharp debate ensued after the campus’s College Republicans group declined to support an initiative of the campus Rock the Vote voter- registration group. ND Rock the Vote wanted to give riders on South Bend’s city buses information on how to register to vote and directions on where to go on Election Day. The College Republicans said people riding buses were likely to vote Democrat and they didn’t want to give a boost to the opposition. . . . In a Scholastic humor column, junior Erik Powers wrote that he has no qualm with men lying out on the quad with their girlfriends to tan on sunny days. Here’s why: “[W]hen you are in a relationship you are exempt from criticism for two reasons: 1) It’s your duty to help your girlfriend with suntan lotion, and if you’re comfortable with her putting it on herself or having someone else do it for her, then she’s not really your girlfriend but an awkward breakup you keep putting off, and 2) In addition to tanning, you do a lot of things while dating that you wouldn’t normally do unless you were a girl, such as shower and talk about your feelings.”