I remember John Mayer commenting one time about what it feels like to miss the gym for a while, something about feeling “like a pile of wet cement.” That’s how I feel if I don’t run every so often. I spent Independence Day in Philadelphia, and fit a run in while there from Old City across past the Philadelphia Museum of Art and back.
When running past the museum, I stopped to admire John Marshall welcoming visitors to the Impressionist exhibit. The podium he’s sitting on reads:
Chief Justice of the United States
As soldier he fought that the nation might come into being.
As expounder of the Constitution he gave it length of days.
This reminded me John Adam’s remark to the French, (paraphrasing) that he studied war in order that his children might enjoy peace, and in turn study things like the arts.
Independence Day is a celebration not only of our freedom as a people, but also of the Constitutional order that preserves our liberty. Like art, it’s important to study.