"District Makes a Pitch For Hip New Residents" is the title of this story.
The cornerstone of the District's new marketing campaign will be a simple slogan: "city living, dc style!"Sweet cuppin' cakes. They did not just serve that up to me, did they? Is it April Fools' Day? No? Shit, this is real?
"city living, dc style!" All lower-case, no less, presumably because that's... "hip and happening."
The District is "hip, happening, the hot place to be," said Michael Stevens, president of the Washington, D.C., Marketing Center.Wow.
OK, so I have a few questions. First, are they marketing D.C. from the 1950s? And secondly, do you actually think using all lowercase is correct because of your substandard educations?
The design of this website notwithstanding, it's going to take more than lowercase letters to get people to move to the District. Maybe a little h4x0r speak would work better. "(17y l1V1|\|6 D( s7Y|3!! 0wnz0rd!!"
What is "city living, dc style"? According to city planners, it's affordable housing options for people of all incomes, sports and concerts at MCI Center, cultural activities at museums and theaters and an active nightlife at the city's bars and restaurants.OK, well, not so much "housing" options for all incomes; more like "tenement" options for lower-to-middle classes and "swanky Northwest housing" options for the super-rich.
"Just like if the Gap comes out with a new pair of jeans and has a blitz marketing ad, our job is to let people know the product, to connect people with what we've done," said Chris Bender, spokesman for the city's office of economic development.You heard it. D.C. is trying to be like The Gap. Because that's hip and happening. So. Very. Sad.
City boosters, however, made a point to stay away from certain topics commonly associated with living in the District. The city's beleaguered education system garnered not a single mention from city planners during a briefing for a reporter yesterday. Nor did the recent surge in homicides.Well yeah, because you can live in those areas, get all the benefits out of D.C. they're advertising, and not put your life at so much risk. And you get actual Congressional representation, and don't have to deal with the alternately corrupt and inept D.C. government.
Still, officials were quick to point out that they are focusing the campaign on the audience they believe the District most appeals to: young, childless professionals and empty-nesters looking to leave the suburbs for a more active life.
City leaders believe they are competing with the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor and Bethesda.
"We want to show this is why living in D.C. is cool. Because you can't go outside our borders and do certain things," Bender said.Which has nothing to do with living in Washington. The District proper encompasses all of 10 square miles. You don't have to live inside to reap the benefits they're touting.
It was pointed out that one of those things might be to see military vehicles on the streets in the event the country goes to a Code Red alert, in an age when terror warnings are a part of life.That's right. Seeing military vehicles in the streets... is invigorating. It makes you forget all about the severe poverty, urban decay, corrupt local government, awful schools, the classism, the racism, and the highest murder rate per-capita in the country. You get all that, and you get to live in a magnet for terrorism that's practically a federal police state. En-fucking-joy.
In full selling mode, Bender didn't miss a beat: "You choose that when you live in D.C. You see more Humvees on the street, and you don't mind it," he said. "You're invigorated by it."
Wow. This is going to be fun to follow. If you want more info, "officials will kick off the campaign with a celebration at 5 p.m. Wednesday in Farragut Square, featuring music, food and informational pamphlets." Let's all be there.