by August 30, 2011 at 1:00 pm 1,416 1 Comment

Lebodome, Borderstan, Scott Leibowitz

An unusual end to the summer:  An earthquake, a hurricane and the best baseball game Lebodome has ever attended. (Scott Leibowitz)

From Scott Leibowitz. Find him @Lebodome on Twitter or email him at [email protected].

Maybe we were all having too much fun at happy hours. Maybe it was penance for complaining about the awful heat of July that made it unbearable to take a walk without craving a slurpee. Or maybe, just maybe, as Michelle Bachman joked, it’s because our own District can’t seem to remember the classic kindergarten lesson of “play nice together” (I don’t for a second endorse this. That woman is batsh*t). What the heck happened to our summer and how did it end like this?

For me, my end of summer was so out of whack that I am not sure what kind of adjectives should be used. But like most people, it can be told through the medium of the natural disasters (don’t love that term) we have had recently.

Earthquake: One a perfectly normal Tuesday, I made plans to enjoy some outdoor lunch with fellow Borderstan writer Laura. We grab our lunch and find a quiet seat behind McFadden’s around 25th and K Streets NW. In the midst of a great catch-up session, Laura turns to me and asks if our bench is shaking or if is she going crazy. I noticed that yes, it is a bit, but I blame it on either a metro under us (the Metro doesn’t go to Gtown so not that), squirrels (nope) or a moving truck (nah).

About 15 minutes later someone randomly asks us if we are ok from the earthquake, and we both think he is drunk. We then hit the twitter waves and see that we laughed through a 5.8-er. Of course, we then noticed everyone has cleared the offices and traffic is gridlocked. I almost feel bad — I didn’t notice a freakin’ earthquake. What’s wrong with me?

Irene: So I go home to New Jersey (yeah yeah, insert your comment) last week, and on the Thursday before the storm, I attend easily the best baseball game I have ever seen. The New York Yankees hit 3 grand slams, a feat that has never been done in the history of professional sports. How could life get any better?

I’ll tell you!! Some pissed off woman named Irene showed up and decided she had enough of Jersey and forced me and my extended family to stay in the house and enjoy the best hurricane the state has seen in a century. I will say my small suburb was spared from flooding, power outages and water sports, but it ruined my plans for an amazing live fantasy football draft (it was done online, not the same). Plenty of Jersey is still recovering; luckily we put our pool furniture back outside Monday, but I still don’t have power.

Earthquakes. Hurricanes. What a way to end the summer.  At least we got my favorite season coming up: fall. What’s not to love about playoff baseball, beginning of the NFL and maybe some college football that will be declared ineligible in a few years. Hopefully it doesn’t snow anytime soon.

Thoughts of the Week: What are ya’ll up to for Labor Day? I hope it’s a BBQ…

Links! Links! Ice Cold Links!

  • The greatest sporting event comes to NYC this week, the US Open.
  • If you are a fan of “The Wire”, enjoy this.
  • United States children are better than Japanese children… at baseball.

by August 29, 2011 at 8:00 am 1,337 0

Hurricane Irene, 14th Street NW, Logan Circle, Borderstan

14th and R NW: Other than water from Saturday’s heavy rains, local construction sites and most everything else in the Borderstan area appeared undamaged from Hurricane Irene. 

From Mike Kohn. Email him at [email protected] or find him on Twitter @mike_kohn.

Way to go team Borderstan! You made it through not one, but two natural disasters this week. You deserve a medal. Or a cookie. Have any crazy stories from your week of horror? Did anyone actually go outside late last night? What did you do to pass the time during Irene? Let us know in the comments — and feel free to throw any photos you might have taken in the Borderstan Flickr pool.

Cop Drama

An off-duty cop was involved in a slight altercation at the intersection of 1st and Pierce Streets NW. After driving drunk, the cop shot at the five people in the car, hitting one three times and hitting one other once. It would be bad enough, but two of the people in the car were trans, outraging the LGBT community and calling for Chief Kathy Lanier’s involvement. From the DC Trans Coalition: “This incident is just another in a long line of systemic violence that trans women, and particularly trans women of color, face on a daily basis.” Read more from DCist.

Hurricane Irene, Borderstan, Vermont Avenue NW, Zurga DC, Flickr

Block of 1300 Vermont Avenue NW: There were some downed trees from Hurricane Irene in the area, but not as many as in Upper Northwest. (Zurga DC in Borderstan Flickr pool)

Metro Ups and Downs

Apparently WMATA is intalling some new lighting on the platforms! Seems like a good thing for the dark, dingy waiting areas, but the DCist reader who called it seemed to think it might actually be too bright for the platform. What do you think? Adding to the potential Metro woes, TBD reports on a potential protest from MetroAccess drivers. Apparently the drivers of those small buses that help people with disabilities feel that they work too many hours in unsafe conditions. Just another day in the life of WMATA, right?

Where Has All the Surface Parking Gone?

Sure, it does seem like there are an incredible amount of apartments around here, but what’s even more incredible is that good ones are still always in demand. That’s why the First Baptist Church of Washington is proposing a 9-story 228-unit apartment build at the corner of 17th and O Streets NW. The site is currently surface parking, and between that and the height (yes, we all know how D.C. loves its shorter buildings), the Church may see some opposition. Greater Greater Washington has the full scoop.

Networking for a Cause

In case you’re looking for a networking event that has a cool idea behind, check out the Young Professionals CANstruction Event at the National Building Museum tonight at 6:30. I had the privilege of participating over the weekend in CANstruction, an annual event where architecture firms build structures out of cans to benefit the Capital Area Food Bank, and I’ll be there tomorrow to talk about it. Come check out all the structures and bring some canned good to help the hungry!

by August 26, 2011 at 9:00 am 1,897 0

Shaw Dog Park, Luis Gomez Photos

Renovations to the Shaw Dog Park on 11th Street NW got underway this week. Treeboxes and benches went in along with new paved entryways. The park received an $85,000 Neighborhood Improvement Fund grant last fall. (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Michelle Lancaster. You can follow her and  tell her your news on Twitter @MichLancaster. Email her at [email protected].

Come On, Irene…

In case you missed it, we are slated to get one heck of a storm this weekend. Hurricane Irene is flirting with an upgrade to a Category 4 storm sometime Saturday morning. Try to prepare and be safe — we’re talking bottled water, non-perishable food and flashlights. Hopefully you don’t need those, though. Washington Business Journal reports that local power companies are preparing for the onslaught to keep your lights on for the weekend.

One Little Piggy Goes to Market

If you ignore my advice and develop a bad case of cabin fever, go check out another pig roast at Local 16 on the 28th. We went to the first and man, that was some tasty pork! Need to feel better about your gluttony? We’ve got you covered. Check out Deals for Deeds to get your $10 tickets and do some good by stuffing your piehole.

Boozy Thursday Hits You Missed

While we were being paranoid survivalists (or working late and hitting the bar, that’s survival too), we and you probably missed two great booze events. Gina Chersevani of PS7 and Elli Benchimol of Chef Geoff’s held a course last night on using garden herbs and produce to make cocktails as part of a learn, sip and taste seminar (details at The Washington Post’s Going Out Guide). Also last night was a Dog Days of Summer event at the Kennedy Center featuring grilled sausages, local beers and music on the roof. Given the weather, it may have been a bit dicey, but the roof deck overlooking the river is one of our favorite things. See what you missed at Brightest Young Things.

New Developments in the Neighborhood

Urban Turf has the dirt on a new development on 14th Street. The project, called The Irwin, would be six stories and 55 units of mostly studios or one-bedrooms. The ANC directed the developers to rework their glass design and talk to more neighbors, so no clue when this will actually break ground. A project in another vacant lot has less support, however. Greater Greater Washington reports on the neighborhood opposition to the development of a condo building at 17th Street and O Street. Several other steps, such as ANC approval, approval by the Historic Preservation Review Board and a zoning variance, will need to be taken before the project can move forward, so stay tuned.

Zoning, ANC’s and Ice Water at Shaw’s Tavern

It’s hard to not be a little sad while reading the Washington City Paper’s story on Shaw’s Tavern and the trials they are enduring in an attempt to get their liquor license. It appears mistakes were made initially and they are paying the (in this writer’s opinion) excessive price for those missteps. Please, alcohol gods at the Alcohol Beverage Control Board, give them a break. This area could actually use some decent food places and really, we all deserve a cold one.

Should I Stay or Should I Go Now

Not talking about evacuations, but an interesting story in the Washington Times discussing the equation that directs you to buy a condo or continue renting. It’s not groundbreaking stuff, but it’s a good reminder that the changes in the market post-bubble bursting are lasting. If you are having to explain to your mother why it’s okay to rent for a long time like me, it’s a good rationalization read.


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