News Bullets, corked Friday;

OK, I'm back. Again. This is what happens when you take all of your vacation time in a 2 week period. I was in Chicago this time, and it made me realize a few things about DC. Previously I've tried to compare DC to Chicago or other large cities, but that's not a fair comparison. A lot of people don't want to hear it, but DC isn't a big city. Yes, there's a populous metro area here, but there isn't the large urbanized area other cities (Chicago, New York, etc.) have. I'll have a bit more about this later. For some reason I thought it would be productive to go back to work on a Friday, but in retrospect I think this was a poor decision. In any event, here's a quick look at the news.

Pepco worker shot in Bloomingdale. I know that "crime can happen anywhere," but I don't think that groups of rowdy teens shoot people everywhere. I'm just saying. As much as Bloomingdale wants to be a hip neighborhood for yuppies and young families, it's not exactly a lovely place to live. I don't care that Big Bear Cafe is there. I can't understand why housing prices for Bloomingdale have shot up so much lately. I've heard too many stories about people getting randomly assaulted by teens on the street or outside of the Shaw Metro, and now a Pepco worker gets shot. Let's see if police have any luck catching these people.

Tri-State Oversight Committee gets inspectors onto Metro tracks. The media would have you believe this is the final step of the battle, but in reality it is only the first step. Merely allowing access to inspectors does not "make sure" anything is safe. The real story will be what these inspectors discover, and what sort of access they have. Ultimately, inspectors need access to all areas of Metro (including the head office!) to observe safety from the track level all the way up to John Catoe's office.

DC worst place to open a small business. Unless you are a bar. Or possibly a cheese market. Rejoice, 14th Street, the new Cork Market opens today. Harry Jaffe at the Examiner notes that DC is ranked 51st (aka last) for places to start and grow a small business. It's an interesting read, and worth more exploring.

More layoffs at the Newseum. The big memorial to a dying industry is shedding another 29 employees. This is the third round of layoffs since the museum opened at its new location in the District. Honestly moving from Rosslyn to the huge new facility in DC seems to have been a poor choice. Also, being a stupidly gaudy self-fellating museum doesn't help.

I missed a lot of news while out of town, including the whole Ximena Hartsock replacement. And more DPR scandals. Metro's budget is also screwed. Seems there was some more polling on Fenty, as well. I'll try to get caught up. Also, I've been organizing a whole lot of District Daily stuff behind the scenes, so needless to say, I've been busy. Keep your eyes peeled for some big updates in the next few days.


  1. Dave, you act like Bloomingdale is Beirut. I have lived there for a year and a half. I love it. Every neighborhood has its issues. I got in a scuffle with some kids over the summer, but I guess I walked away at the right moment. The only place I have ever felt more welcome is in the neighborhood outside Detroit where I grew up. Property values are high, but its got a lot of big houses with great architecture and the majority of the neighbors are awesome. Not to mention that its pretty well located.

  2. While I don't care for the Examiner and its bent, I almost always find Jaffe's columns to be pleasant reads. He seems to write from the heart and the best interests of seeing a city flourish. But he misses one point: DC is a practical colony of the US in the sense that Congress runs the show, and hence some taxes need to stay high for a revenue stream.

  3. Well, here's how I come to my judgment on Bloomingdale.

    1) I don't own a car right now, so I'll be on foot most of the time. There is good bus access to most of the city, but I'll also need to use the Metro. I'm very careful and 'street smart' and have lived in some rougher areas, but I don't want to always be stressed out that the group of teenagers is going to assault me.

    2) If I'm paying $1500 a month or more to rent, I don't really want to have to keep a loaded shotgun by the door. I know it doesn't happen all of the time, but I have heard of break-ins, especially people fleeing from police.

    3) It's centrally located, in a way, but I'd likely need to take a bus or the Metro for groceries and most anything else.

    Not that I don't care about my own safety, but to deal with the problems in Bloomingdale, I'd have to be getting a really good deal on rent. Make no mistake, if I could rent a 1BR for $1,200 (non-basement) or a 2BR for under $1,500 you'd have me sold.

    Maybe I'm just getting old and cranky, but Bloomingdale doesn't offer enough for me at the current prices.