Monday, July 20, 2009

DC is the New

The first half of 2009 has been good to DC. We're dealing slightly better with the recession than the rest of the country. Violent crime and murders are down, relatively. The new Presidential administration has breathed fresh life into and world wide attention onto DC. Even Hollywood is shining a light on the District with no less than three reality shows and an Owen Wilson flick being filmed here this year. Some observations:

14th and U is the new 18th and Columbia
Want to emulate 18th and Columbia on the weekend? Add a little street harassment, one fight, gridlocked traffic, bunch o' jumbo slice, pinch of lost Virginians and a nightly dose of mass bar hopping. U Street isn't quite all the way there, but its certainly giving Adams Morgan a run for the money as most annoying nightlife neighborhood.

Coffee shop is the new coffee shop

Nothing says you are are a bonafide, made-it, DC neighborhood than a locally owned coffee shop. These indie establishments give a sense of place to an area, some ownership to the residents-customers and provide a gathering place where neighbors can at least look at, if not interact with each other. Mt Pleasant has one in Dos Gringos. Now a couple of other neighborhoods are gearing up for their own versions. Chinatown Coffee in, well, Chinatown and Big Chair in Anacostia.

Yoga studio is the new coffee shop
Quiet Mind, Boundless, Yoga District, Studio Serenity, Past Tense and the list goes on. Yoga studios are popping up all over. Many of the midtown neighborhoods, including Adams Morgan, Mt Pleasant, Columbia Heights and U Street each has their own. Some neighborhoods have more than one. Close to home, familiar and relaxing. Like a coffee shop, but healthier.

Natinal is the new Nationals
Thankfully and mercifully my ticket plan for the Washington Nationals has expired. I won't likely be giving any more money to this team in 2009. I support them, but will be watching from home for the rest of the season. The odd jersey-gate episode was funny, but the team's actual performance is almost literally sickening. They represent Washington in such a nonchalant manner, you might forget that we built a 3/4 billion dollar stadium for the team only a year ago. Hockey season can't return soon enough.

Barry '09 is the new Barry '90
For a civil rights worker, the mayor who initiated a teen summer work program and helped jump start U Street's revival, Marion Barry has seemingly thrown away second chance after second chance. He trumped critics by winning the mayorship and then a council seat after being declared politically dead, but Barry has come into some more trouble as of late. In 2009 he's been maligned for his anti gay marriage views, public sex life episodes and job hiring oddities. In the eye of his supporters, he still on top. Considering that, I think should quit while he's ahead; i.e. retire after his current term is over.

Real Word DC is the new Real World Phila
Locals hate on the new Real World before, during and after they show up. Real World house located is a renovated historic building in a happening neighborhood. Reality treated as a relative term for the duration of the show. Check, check and check. Same show, different day, 135 miles south.

NextBus is the new on-time bus
All my friends, and many readers of this blog tell me that NextBus is great. I agree. Wholeheartedly. However, as a commenter pointed out on an earlier post, there is a potentially icky consequence of having this system. Will knowing when the next bus is approaching replace caring that that bus is actually on time? I hope not. There are still bus schedules WMATA! Just because we know the next 42 bus is arriving in 15 minutes doesn't mean we don't realize that it's scheduled to be arriving in 5 minutes.

Any I forgot, let me know...