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Archive for March, 2012

DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 29th, 2012 by dcblogs

InShaw is 9 years old. Reflections about the blog and neighborhood in two posts: one and two. (In case you were wondering: The oldest continuing blog in the District may be Mean Louise. See the FAQ below.

This post is about life in Melbourne, Australia, as told by a couple of ex-DC’ers who recently moved there. It’s an entertaining and informative read, titled: Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff (like peeing with your mates). The blog is Smuggling Budgies.

The District’s Dept. of Transportation is delivering one of the best government blogs that we have seen anywhere. In this post, Walking the Walk, department staffers tell about their decision to live without a car. The blog also has an inventive name: d.ish.

There have been some horrifying assaults recently in DC. The Washington Blade provides a close-up look at one of them: ‘I remember being kicked, called faggot.’

Rainbow over DC. (Don’t read anything into this). Multiple images. Storify via Susie Cambria.

With a slight update: March 28, 2012.

DCBlogs is five years old now seven years old (March, 2005) so it’s time to answer a few things. Over time, on no certain schedule, I’ll offer a little history and observations about blogging in DC. What follows is entirely my opinion about this world– KOB

An updated FAQ about blogging in The District.

1. What do Chia Pets and bloggers use alike?

Click here for the answer.

2. What is the oldest continuously published blog in DC?

It may be Mean Louise, who has archives extending back to 1999. Mean Louise may be running the oldest continuing blog in the District. She points to a former DC-based blogger as another possibility, but who writes today about his sheep farm in Vermont. Mean Louise is a very witty writer and longtime favorite.

3. Who wrote the Best. First. Post. Ever?

In a time when blogging was still seen as revolutionary, one of the best was James, the first writer of why.i.hate.dc. He began his blog with what amounts to an anthem on March 28, 2003.

This blog will contain the various reasons I hate living in Washington, D.C. There may be no rhyme or reason to my rantings, and likely no suggestion for how to solve the problems I have with the city and metro area. Frankly, my dear, suck on it.

That post focused this blog like few others and after James left other writers, including the excellent work by its last writer, David, continued the mission. The blog shut down about two years ago.

Update March 28, 2012: The majority of new blogs are about food, personal sports, fashion, nightlife and shopping. Many of the mainstream blogs, the ones that attract advertising, operate mostly as comment farms. These blogs aren’t interested in original reporting or in challenging the powers in the District.

Even the thoughtful blogs, which mostly write about planning, transportation and things that only matter to their urban personal lifestyles, focus on reasonableness instead of outrage.

Blogging has always been fundamentally self-indulgent, but it was never meant to be tiring.

This criticism isn’t aimed at the personal bloggers. There are many bloggers who write about their lives and our times and deliver stinging critiques about our world. They are a gift to this community. This is about the bloggers that seek a broad audience and, in some cases, commercial reward based on content that is increasingly uninspired or enterprising. They know who they are.

One of the best bloggers ever in the District was Washingtonienne, she was a personal blogger, whose work, with the passage of time, looks today more like genius in explaining how twisted Capitol Hill really is. Washingtonienne’s sheer boldness was inspirational to this blogging community in ways it has never been given credit for.

But outside of a handful of personal bloggers today, what do we have? Perhaps blogging has been absorbed by mainstream media. In its short, failed attempt TBD did its best to homogenize a community that seemed more than willing to jump on board.

The Washington Post taps local bloggers for editorial-lite content and is gradually trying to dull down the blogging community. (Remember the days when the Washington Post was a target for criticism by local bloggers? Now the community seems mostly interested in sucking up to it.)

Blogging will get a refresh. Something new will emerge. Revolutions begin anew.

4. Should you tell your coworkers about your blog?

Why not? You may need a job change.

5. But how many people have been fired because of blogging in DC?

There is no way of knowing, but people have been fired. Some have blogged about the experience. See this post, circa 2006, the cost of free speech.

Many workplaces have internal blogs. Be careful what you post. For instance, if you work at one of our local spy agencies try to avoid criticizing some of its customer services.

6. Has the risk of getting fired for blogging declined?

Yes. Your employer may be more concerned about your Twitter feed.

7. Are there more bloggers in DC than in other cities?

There is no way of knowing. But throughout recorded and unrecorded history there has always been a strong correlation between writing and drinking. So let’s consider drinking as a leading indicator for blogging.

A blogger who moved from California to DC wrote this about her new home:

This town may be conservative (in its DRESS), but it is very liberal when it comes to its alcohol. There is always booze to find in this town, if you know where to go. For example, many of my friends who have been to Capitol Hill for parties have told me all about how there is so much booze that you’d go nuts. My roommate Cecily had $200 worth of fine wine for free at a wine bar last night (I have heard that they’re getting more common). Drinking at the Nationals game on Saturday night was very much encouraged, and I have never seen so much beer offered around in all my life. For a cocktail party my mentor is throwing, the invitation read “OPEN BAR! OPEN BAR! OPEN BAR! – June, 2005. Ms Reina goes to Washington


DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 27th, 2012 by dcblogs

The kindness of strangers, customer service and what happens in DC. My Kind of Strange writes about it: Customer service … Do you know what it is? If you live in the District of Columbia chances are you don’t know what it is – it’s hard to find around here. Countless times, at local grocery stores, pharmacies and fast food restaurants I have gone through an entire transaction without a single word being spoken or even eye contact being made.

I am Trayvon Martin. Restaurant Refugee.

Fate, you’re funny, and yes, this is the real last post ever on The Anti DC. Marissa writes: This past Friday, when the Washington Post deemed me a “tastemaker,” The Anti DC pretty much shrugged its binary shoulders and said. “Well, then. We had a good run.”

Bracketoology – Is It an Art or a Science?
Rice Quips.

An open letter to my single sisters. I Wanna Sing Like Sarah ‘Sassy’ Vaughan. She writes: Stop believing that there are no men in their late 30s/early 40s without children and/or a failed marriage behind them.

The Blossoms Start to Fade. Photos. Jason’s View from DC.

Periwinkle Girl. Photos. GoKateShoot.

DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 26th, 2012 by dcblogs

The moment I realized leaving DC was the right move. Girl Meets Gump. It begins: This post is very special to me. It signifies a big shift, from the past to the future. From the big city to a slower pace. Let me describe the moment when I knew that leaving DC for Alabama was the right decision.

Nothing prompts a flame war on a mailing list or a blog as the issue of cars-versus-bikes-versus-pedestrians. There aren’t any winners in these testy and familiar arguments. But everyone would do well to focus on the consequences. Here’s a blog post by a writer at the lawfirm Gjel, and news story (Work warning: this SF Examiner story will trigger unlrelated commercial video) about a woman from DC who was in San Francisco for a visit and was struck by a bike and killed. According to the news story, the bicyclist pleaded guilty to misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter. Under a plea agreement, he will now promote bicycle safety.

A taxi driver with a talent for story telling. Nyquil Express. Diary of a Mad DC Cabbie.

Heart Strings tries to make the best of dating in DC. The post, Lemonade, begins: So I had been feeling a little angst-y about the whole dating scene. I was meeting guys who were good men in sub-optimal situations. Two that were going through a divorce, one who was a poor artist without a sense of responsibility or consequence, another who lived in the opposite corner of the nation, etc. Just not relationship material for me. Frustrating.

Five brunches people are talking about. Johnna Knows Good Food

DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 23rd, 2012 by magnolia

As someone in the process of moving, and having the house shown at often surprising times, I am so with The Cutter Rambles on this one. On prospective buyers who come over. Any time.

Pretty pictures of casual shrimp today, thanks to The Pumpernickel Collection.

Sometimes I feel this way, Wet Dog – I miss stopping too.

Even as the weather turns unseasonably warm, nothing melts my heart more than little hockey kids. Stimeyland takes us on the road for his little mite’s very special hockey extravaganza.

And to take us out today, that most DC of spring traditions. Go out and do what Feast After Famine did – take in some beautiful cherry blossoms! Have a glorious weekend!

DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 22nd, 2012 by RestaurantRefugee

Just in case you were wondering what effect a Saturday Night St. Patrick’s Day might have on crime statistics, the ARL blog compiled the data for Arlington. The last one is a doozey.

This has been an interesting week in the NFL off-season. Peyton Manning has moved to Denver, Teebow will be leaving the Mile High City (and breaking the hearts of Tee-vangelicals everywhere) and the NFL has dropped Damocles’ sword on the New Orleans Saints for their bounty hunting system. The Sports Sense blog lives up to its name in their summary.

Please spare a good thought for Charlcie. The third time is not charming if it’s the third appearance of cancer.

The Post is DC’s paper of record but their endorsement for the upcoming primary elections aren’t nearly as funny as the ones from the Washington City Paper’s City Desk blog.

Today is World Water Day (who knew?) The Metro DC Lawn & Garden Blog has some thoughts about how you can honor the source and sustainer of life.

Spoiler Alert: The Date Me DC blog has a happy ending. Read her last post anyway.

DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 21st, 2012 by RestaurantRefugee

If you live in an inner (translation: pre-20th century) part of DC, there is a strong chance that your neighborhood once had a very different name. Greater Greater Washington explores Post-Civil War DC via a recently restored map from the early days of the Washington Post.

This is not a DC Blog. This Tumblr is based in NYC and has been the subject of some relatively broad media coverage. But just in case you still somehow missed, like this contributing editor did, Project Unbreakable is the most significant thing the internets have shown me in a while. Survivors of sexual abuse turn their abuser’s words into a most beautiful scar of an art project.

Without additional commentary, Livit Luvit’s “Bucket List is not Normal.”

The Broads of the Beltway have written a convenient guide to what your regular bar says about you.

The Trayvon Martin story is personal for me as it is for any man of color who has had to give “the speech” to a young charge. I was certain that I was not going to read, let alone highlight, any blog post that discussed this tragedy… and then I read LaurieWrites’ beautifully melancholy but hopeful post that relates young Master Martin’s experience to the young men in her charge.

DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 20th, 2012 by dcblogs

The Story of Our Engagement. Supernova Bride.

Metro has published a new map, which represents the “most major revision” to Metro’s map in the agency’s history. BeyondDC.

March Madness has lived up to the hype so far. Cloture Club.

Undercover DPS officers foil burglary in progress in St. Mary’s last night. Vox Populi

It opens this week, but Always a drunk, never a bride, says Yeah, I’m not seeing the Hunger Games.

Why ’21 Jump Street’ is a must-see: ‘They don’t serve Vegan in jail.’ Laura E. Donovan.

Urban Turf shares the fantasy: $55 A Month in Rent? It’s possible.

DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 19th, 2012 by dcblogs

Just like that, a car blows up in Adams Morgan. Great photo. Life Through Photography.

Dating do’s and don’ts. Comprehensive and thoughtful. By Hannah, just breathe…. Excerpt: Don’t question yourself or what you have to offer. Do believe in your worth, your greatness, your intellect, your contribution.

Harassment on the Washington DC Metro. Washington DC Sketchbook.

All about the ‘honey do’ list. Writes the One with the Red Stethoscope: I mean, are other people aware of the fact that men will request “honey do” lists and that they’ll actually spend their Sundays doing things like taking care of your car? It’s like a whole new world, you guys. I never knew this universe, in which I am currently living, existed.

Pinhole photo of the Library of Congress. Eric Spiegel Photography.

This is a very good street art collection. Many photos. The 202.

DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 16th, 2012 by dcblogs

Bicycling is the fastest way to travel in downtown DC. Greater Greater Washington.

No alphas, and no bettas either please. Peaceful Dog, writes: I know that dog bloggers are a sophisticated bunch, used to dealing with complicated psycho-social matters like blended families, rescuer martyr complexes, animal welfare concerns, and everything in-between. So maybe you can help me out with this one.

In a photo, Bikecrush, captures symmetry.

I’m easily discouraged now that I’m unemployed, writes Dating in Dresses, who finds a quick fix to her problem.

Supra Cool Art at the Hirshhorn. Kidfriendly DC.

Burglar punches student in the face one block from campus. A report from Vox Populi.

DC Blogs Noted

Posted in DC Blogs Noted on March 15th, 2012 by dcblogs

Magnolia writes: this is a rant, at least to start with, about stupid drivers and how everyone except me who drives on this one road is a COMPLETE MORON.

What’s up with the most dangerous metro stations list? Capital Comment Blog: Is the city trying to scare us, warn us, or simply make us more educated pedestrians and Metro riders?

There is such as thing as bipartisan speed dating? Beer in hair makes more sense. Doin’ the Grown-Up. Here are the details at InTheCapital.

The project to ruin the National Mall is moving along. Part of the plan involves replacing the wonderful gravel pathways with asphalt. The new grass, however, is welcomed. DC Metrocentric.

DC Food for All wants your brainstroming help.