Subscribe: bloomingdale (for now)
Added By: Feedage Forager Feedage Grade B rated
Language: English
art  blog  bloomingdale  front  house  neighborhood  new  north capitol  rhode island  rhode  street  time  trees  water 
Rate this Feed
Rate this feedRate this feedRate this feedRate this feedRate this feed
Rate this feed 1 starRate this feed 2 starRate this feed 3 starRate this feed 4 starRate this feed 5 star

Comments (0)

Feed Details and Statistics Feed Statistics
Preview: bloomingdale (for now)

bloomingdale (for now)

life in dc is weird. so am i.

Updated: 2017-11-14T09:13:00.602-05:00


the end (for now)


(image) i'm going to rip off the sign-off post from one of my favorite blogs, stop, blog, and roll. jaime, the founder and creative force behind the blog, was one of my primary motivators when it came time to start this neighborhood blog. when i moved here, she helped me set up bloomingdale (for now), and for that i'm forever grateful.

anyway, the short story is that i've moved out of bloomingdale. the third post on this blog explained that i called the blog bloomingdale (for now) because i believed my move to the neighborhood could be temporary. i said from the get-go that i would move if i couldn't find a house to buy in bloomingdale.

well, i looked, but there was nothing in my price range in the neighborhood. working for a non-profit doesn't allow one to afford the prices in this part of the city if you want a rowhouse (not condo). so, i looked far-and-wide for a place that fell into my price range. in the end, i bought a house in trinidad.

i've been in trinidad for two months now. i love it. this house is amazing, the neighbors are friendly (as friendly as bloomingdale, i dare say!), and i'm still a short bike ride downtown to work. it's been interesting learning the minute details of a whole new part of town.

the short of it is this: i lived in and loved bloomingdale for 3 years. i started this blog as my small way of serving the community. now that i no longer live in the neighborhood, it's time to hang things up here.

my heartfelt thanks go to everyone who supported this endeavor in one way or another - readers, commenters, lurkers, linkers, etc., and particularly sean and scott who have ran the bloomingdale blog in the time i've been here.

i'm going to leave everything up for posterity, and work on establishing something new in trinidad soon. i'll update this post when i have a new digital home ready to go.

thank you all. remember to be kind to each other, appreciate each day, and continue to work in any way you can to strengthen the community.

UPDATE: meeting tonight to discuss possible destruction of boxer girl mural


(image) UPDATE: here's the word from someone who attended last night's meeeting:

Nothing accomplished. Pretty poorly run meeting and it didn't ask for community input. DCCAH said they've changed their policy but there's no mechanism to reverse what's done. Someone had actually asked police to see if it caused an increase in crime. They said there has been a 55% decrease.

(i received this information in an email from sean over the weekend)
tonight's bloomingdale civic association meeting will include discussion about the boxer girl mural. there seems to be a lot of pressure on the city to destroy the mural and the mayor's office is considering it.

if you are in support of this mural, or at least in support of the artist and property owner, please come to the meeting. in general it seems that dccah has taken a lot of heat this year, especially with public art. i imagine this is a pretty important discussion.

more info and images in these links:

bloomingdale (for now)
adventures of hoogrrl!
washington city paper: housing complex

you do not need to be a member of the civic association or a neighbor to attend.

monday night.
7:00 pm
160 u street nw
st. george's episcopal church
i'm very clearly in support of art that challenges, art that makes you think, and art that helps give us a sense of unique place. the conservative, almost reactionary, response from some quarters to this art installation worries me. i feel successful destruction of this art will lead to further attempts to quash creative growth in the city.

an open letter to Pat Mitchell of north capital main street


editor's note: i've been meaning to post this for months, literally, but life intervened and kept me from doing so. my apologies to be dredging up something so old, but i still feel it's necessary to set the record straight...on tuesday, july 21st, i posted a quick blurb about the planters in front of the dc mini market. in that post, i made an observation about the state of some of the planters in the sidewalk space there on first street, and i made a brief, not-well-elaborated recommendation for how i thought the space could be more welcoming for all the people who use it on a daily basis.the blog post was picked up and mentioned in scott roberts' daily bloomingdale email, where it was noted that i had "squawk[ed]" about the planter. scott received the following feedback from neighborhood resident Rene Albacete:To the person that complained about the planters in front of the mini-mart. Instead of complaining about it why don't you role up your sleeves and take it on as a community project and maintain the planters yourself? It's a small enough task for one person to handle or coordinate. I've personally taken on many such projects.then, a couple days later, north capitol main street board president pat mitchell posted the following longer reply to scott's email listserv:In answer to the Bloomingdale Squawker’s comments:North Capitol Main Street, is working to revitalize the commercial corridors within the neighborhoods that surround its district. Currently, our Storefront Improvement Pilot Program requirements specify that the funding goes to actual façade improvement projects – glass, paint, security grates, signage and lighting. We have been working to convince and assist the business owners to take advantage of this free program. Many of the businesses have not been able to comply so far with the requirements of providing a “Clean Hands” and “Certificate of Good Standing” from the DCRA – a reasonable requirement if you’re going to receive grant funds, right? However, we have been successful, thus far, in signing up five businesses to receive the improvement grant. Our intent it so show significant physical improvements during this trial period with the goal of applying for larger, more substantial Storefront Improvement grants in the future.TMI, you say? Well, maybe . . . but we take the Bloomingdale Squawker’s squawking as an opportunity to inform and invite you to, as long-time resident and community activist Rene Albacete so succinctly put it, “roll up your sleeves and get involved”. NCMS is a volunteer-driven organization that can only work for the good of the community if people are involved. Many small businesses need a lot of support and services in order to have them meet the expectations and better serve emerging neighborhoods like Bloomingdale, Eckington and Truxton Circle/Bates.But here’s the good news: We have applied for and received a Clean Team Grant, specific funding to address clean, safe and beautification issues. Beginning next month you will begin to see Clean and Safe Ambassadors within your neighborhoods doing the work that is so difficult to get volunteers to commit to doing on a consistent basis, like picking up trash, sweeping the sidewalks, maintaining tree-boxes, watering plants, etc. We don’t know how long this program will be funded – we have a budget and funding for one year – but we certainly are going to take full advantage of it and encourage your support for the continuance of the program. The Clean team grant ensures that the business corridor remains clean and walk-able, and that all beautification projects such as tree boxes, flower pots and planters are maintained on a weekly basis. The service provider we have chosen for the Clean Team Program is Ready, Willing and Working, headed by Patty Brosmer of the Capitol Hill BID, a fantastic organization. And to the Bloomingdale Squawker’s point of broken planters in front of the Mini Mart, as an example of good faith and how eager,[...]

george will appreciation society?


(image) check this out—it would appear that kathleen parker, a not-that-great (read: she never really says anything of particular value) opinion writer for the wapo's opinion page, pays homage to george will's verbal tic of using the word "well" as a stand-alone sentence.
Well, as George Will would say.
here's the link the to second page of the article, where the above quote is located.

'chuck brown way' not where everyone says it's going to be


if you go to chuck brown's website, or read this article at the washington examiner's website, you can see that they all say the unveiling of the 'chuck brown way' sign will take place on saturday (his birthday) at 7th and t nw, but this picture clearly shows the sign is ready to go at the corner of 7th and s nw (apologies for the clarity, this is the best we could do with jaime's phone).

sure, it's just a block down the street, but that has to matter given the official resolution passed by the council, right?

UPDATE: blogroll updates


UPDATE: after looking at things more closely, i realized there were many sites i left out of this update, so i'm including them here. in addition, i removed a few more sites after determining that they really haven't been active for quite a while. if they come back to life, i'll gladly add them back on the blogroll. i also alphabetized everything, with neighborhood blogs first, then other blogs alphabetized at the bottom.added:BeyondDC—not a neighborhood blog, but it covers a lot of topics that affect DC neighborhoods, so i've added this blog that i've long been following to the blogroll.DC Address Coordinates—this blog, run by the DC GIS department, offers a fascinating look at how our building addresses are analyzed here in the city.The Georgetown Metropolitan—this is an absolutely fantastic blog that gives daily news updates from georgetown, as well as interesting things like a series on architecture, discussion of neighborhood landmarks, and great photography.Housing Complex—again, this is not specifically a neighborhood blog, but development in all of DC's neighborhoods gets very good coverage here.Preserving DC Stables—a blog that advocates for the preservation of alley dwellings and businesses, which are (sadly) less common than they used to be in DC.The WashCycle—the go-to blog for news about cycling in the DC area.removed:Columbia Heights News—this website hasn't been updated since last october.Developments in SW DC—there were three blogs that i found almost simultaneously last year that covered DC's smallest quadrant. two of them seem to be thriving, but this one stopped updating in march. maybe 3 blogs was too much for southwest.Eckington DC Living—another area that used to have three blogs, eckington, seems to have seen another one peter out. no posts since april.Fifth and Oh—one of the many shaw blogs, fifth and oh hasn't posted since january (when it seemed a lot of shaw bloggers got very frustrated after the ANC elections led to continued gridlock on the commission.The Goodspeed Update—i'm still following rob's blog personally, but he's moved to boston and doesn't really post about DC neighborhood issues directly—i heart shaw—another shaw blog that became a home for twitter updates for a time, then stopped updating.Treebox Vodka—still the greatest blog name of all time, treebox vodka hasn't updated since last september, and hasn't scheduled a cleanup since then.ORIGINAL POST: i realized my blogroll was well past overdue for an update. there were a few blogs that have reached their end, and some new ones (some of them aren't really "new," but they're new to my RSS reader, so i wanted to make sure everyone was aware that there are more people out there talking about their DC neighborhoods).removed:ANC2C02 Forum—anc commissioner kevin chapple's site was taken offline after a complaint was filed that he was making a profit off of the site. it's too bad, it was an excellent resource. the negative energy side of shaw won this battle.Off Seventh—after briefly coming back to life, it looks like brian has cashiered the blog for real.Bloomingdale—this was one of my inspirations when i moved into the neighborhood. i wanted to be able to add to what sean was doing, without overlapping too much. i think we achieved that during the last few years. very sad to see his blog come to an end.added:Barry Farm (re)mixed—a blog covering the barry farm area, located between historic anacostia and st. e's west campus.Bates Area Civic Association—covers news from the eastern part of shaw (truxton circle, bates, hanover).Brookland Avenue—news and observations from brookland here in ward 5.Convention Center Community Association Blog—news from the new and very active community association that covers the part of shaw near the convention center.C Street NE Project—a narrowly-focused blog, discussing the efforts to make the stretch of c [...]

harry thomas will be at 1st and rhode island on tuesday


harry thomas is holding informal constituent meetings this summer, and will be here to talk to folks from bloomingdale this tuesday.

the program, called “councilmember on your corner” will take place from 5 pm to 7 pm at the corner of 1st and rhode island, nw.

five of these events are scheduled, and this is the only one in our part of the ward (others were/are in queens chapel, brookland, lamond riggs, and carver langston).

a quote from his office:
“While I have an open door policy and meet with all residents who come to my office, not everyone has the flexibility or time to make the trek downtown,” says Councilmember Thomas. “Councilmember on Your Corner provides residents with an opportunity to share their thoughts and concerns with me without having to leave their neighborhoods. Plus, I enjoy being out in the Ward,” notes Thomas.

crispus attucks park clean-up day—saturday 8/22/2009


see this message from molly scott of the crispus attucks development corporation:

Happy Summer Bloomingdale!

Have you been to Crispus Attucks Park lately? Come see us grow! Neighbors have been working steadily throughout the Summer to keep it looking beautiful and we've had a lot of neighbors using the park- we even had a wedding there a few months ago!

Please help us keep it looking great- the Crispus Attucks Development Corporation is having an End-of-Summer Clean-up day on Saturday August 22nd from about 9 am till 2 pm. We don't want to keep people out in the Super-hot Summer sun, so come out early and maybe we can be done faster :)

We have a few projects to work on and maybe more to come:

- weeding
- mulching
- edging
- maybe re-laying some large flagstones in the Memory Garden

All are welcome, we'll have some snacks and drinks- come out and lend a hand!



boycott neighborhood stores?


this note was included on thursday's bloomingdale listserv message:From Bloomingdale resident Joe Levesque:The little corner grocery stores are the worst offenders. Both the Flagler Market on W ST NW and the blue Mini Market (former A&L) on 2107 First ST NW are two offenders. I spoke to the staff of both stores two weeks ago, and asked them to water the new trees. They agree to. Now all the trees in front of their stores are dead. I even watered them myself, carrying 10 gallons of water 300 feet. When I returned from vacation after 10 days, I noticed that the 3 trees had died from lack of water. These trees would still be alive if the store owners had spent just 3 minutes each week watering them.We should not support any stores that don't support our community. They are doing us a disservice. We should boycott them.NOTE: Windows Cafe and Big Bear Cafe have both done great jobs improving the appearance of the neighborhood. They deserve our support!!We should all report to Scott what other street trees in public spaces have died.i figured a few photos would be appropriate here to illustrate what mr. levesque is talking about:here's the micro-market at 2107 1st street nw. (it's kind of funny how timor is painted a bright color, too, but it doesn't seem to be as jarring as this place. maybe it's because of the windows.) the tree in front has clearly be fair, the house two doors down at 2011 has a dead tree in front of their house as well, so it's not just the businesses in the neighborhood that are neglecting to water their's the flagler market at the corner of flagler street and w street nw. the dead tree that mr. levesque referenced is at the left side of the photo (on w street).here's a closer photograph of that oak tree. note that it had one of the mayor's green team's ooze tubes there for watering, though it clearly wasn't being utilized.again, to balance things a little (but by no means to let these people off the hook) here's a dead tree in front of the 9:30 club on v, would you boycott a store because they're not watering the trees in the public space in front of their store?it seems like many neighborhood residents who might consider such a boycott would do so because of the cumulative effect of many other things that these stores do. perhaps the lack of care for the trees could be the thing that pushes you over the edge and makes you consider such a boycott.what do you think? the comment section awaits...[...]

empty parking space? nah, i'll just park in the bike lane


another day, another blocked bike lane. and this time, it's just ridiculous to the point of being nearly sublime.

there is a spot reserved for government vehicles in front of the mary mcleod bethune council house on vermont avenue south of logan circle. but this government worker decided that the posh space was just too good for him/her.

they decided to park in the bike lane instead, keeping any other government worker from being able to reach parking nirvana (and forcing cyclists to move out into traffic that frequently is exceeding the speed limit during the morning rush).

kudos to this worker bee for going above and beyond the call of duty.


bike lane, or parking lane?


just an observation from tuesday morning—is there a bike lane on vermont avenue just south of logan circle? i'm not sure. i can never tell because there are ALWAYS cars double parked there...ALWAYS!!!


'dirt drawing' from yesterday's '1st on first' art walk


these are probably being washed away by the rain this morning...


photos from today's 1st on first event


(image) pulling the weeds and cleaning up the sidewalk on first street and mulching the treeboxes was the order of the day to start the morning.

(image) setting up the stage behind windows for the music.

(image) hanging out alongside windows once the stage was set up.

(image) lawn art at 1st and randolph (it says 'the brain').

(image) more lawn art at 1st and s streets.

(image) art in the window at yoga district.

more information about 'first on 1st'


last wednesday, i told you about the art walk coming to first street on august 1st. here's some more information for those who have been asking:

The Pink Line Project

NCMS partners with The Pink Line Project to bring you First on 1st Street in Bloomingdale, Art + Music Walk . . . featuring contemporary and cutting-edge yard sculpture (for puchase) from local artisans and International Music provided by Pep Rally for Peace.

Featured Activities

* Guided walking art tours
* International Music
* Art Hunt (participate in the Art Hunt and receive free beverages/discounts to local NCMS Bloomingdale businesses)
* Check out local businesses along the tour for free samples -- food, drinks.

First on 1st Art + Music Walk

Bring your blankets, lawn chairs, freezbies (do that still do that?) . . . camp out in the park, enjoy the music, take the tour, stop and shop . . .

LisaMarie Thalhammer (the muralist behind Boxer Girl)
BK Adams
Margaret Boozer
Peter Wood
Chris Tousimis
Patty Firestone
Amber Robles-Gordon
Ten Miles Square
Serinity Knight
Megan Blafas
Ann Bouie

Gospel Rap Vocalist Michael Trotter
R & B Hip-Hop Vocalist Senetra Bridgette
Ethiopian Sound Sensation of Tek X Millennium

Plus . . .
Kenneth Smith
3rd Generation Band
Melanie Roberts
Joy Dion
Fatso Hip-Hop

For info: 202-905-6039

North Capitol Main Street, Inc. is funded through the DC Main Streets Program under the Department of Small and Local Business Development.

UPDATE—police activity on rhode island avenue in bloomingdale


UPDATE: whatever the situation really was is unknown to me, and it would appear to be over with. false alarm? who knows. but the police have cleared out and traffic is back to normal.

ORIGINAL POST: lots of police activity on rhode island avenue between 2nd street nw and north capitol. eastbound rhode island avenue traffic is being rerouted onto seaton place and 2nd street.

rumor is that there is a suspicious package at north capitol and rhode island. updates to come when i get more concrete information.


flooding at scott circle


this afternoon, this was the view looking south down 16th street towards the white house from a point just south of scott circle. you can see that the road was closed off. why?

here's why. a whole bunch of water!

now, ddot just redid the circle a few years ago. dug everything up, installed new drainage, etc. why isn't the water draining then? i have a sneaking suspicion that the drains aren't being kept clear of debris. it's called maintenance, people. it's a shame that dc isn't so good with that. we build new roads, new buildings, new infrastructure, then just walk away and let it fall into disrepair...

parking rules still don't apply to everyone


i just finished a 3 and a half week stint serving on a jury in a civil case in the DC superior court system. spending every single day at the e. barrett prettyman courthouse gave me an appreciation for the mess that passes for parking around the courthouse complex. i saw a lot of examples of police cars like the one above, parked in a crosswalk, double-parked, or blocking an intersection.

this story has been discussed in the press recently, and it doesn't seem to have a solution, outside of digging out more parking underneath john marshall park, because i'm pretty sure that these police aren't going to be convinced to take public transportation to the courthouse.



trees are dying all around the city. see this post from yesterday. the lack of rain we've had since late june is esepcially stressful to the young, newly planted trees lining our streets.

just because we had a very wet may and june doesn't mean that the ground has stayed wet around the roots of these young trees. street trees need 20 gallons of water a week, and they need it now. go outside tomorrow when you have 5 minutes and pour a bucket of water over the roots of the tree in front of your house. if you have an outdoor hose, run it out there and soak the roots for a few minutes. keep doing this for the rest of the summer!

these pictures show a tree at 14th and R streets nw, with an 'ooze tube' around the base. unfortunately, there's no water in this ooze tube. it serves absolutely no purpose if it's not filled with water.

(image) you can see that this ooze tube says "the mayor's green summer job corps" on it, as well as a logo for ddot. it's great that the city is installing these ooze tubes on trees, but let's be real for a minute here—they need to fill them up upon initial installation and coach the people who live next to these trees (or the adjacent businesses) how to use them.

as it stands, these are just pretty brown plastic doughnuts that serve absolutely no purpose...

please, mayor fenty and the dc government, invest a little more effort into the trees you've spent so much money to plant along our streets. it's criminal to not take care of such a valuable investment!

bloomingdale art and music walk - august 1


i promised a post about the 1st street art program that was being sponsored by the north capitol main stret group. here's the flyer:

(image) The Pink Line Project, in conjunction with North Capitol Main Street invite you to:
First on 1st, Art + Music Walk
Saturday, August 1st, noon to 4 pm
Along First Street NW (between Florida and Rhode Island Avenues)

For More Information contact:
Garry Clark
Executive Director
1703 North Capitol Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002

watha t. daniel-shaw library construction update


(image) here's what the construction at the watha t. daniel-shaw library looks like right now. it's a hole in the ground, sure, but it's progress!

eventually, there's supposed to be a live construction camera here. nothing exists for this project yet, but you can look at other DCPL construction projects around the city.

ashtray, planter, garbage can—all of the above?


the planters in front of the dc mini market are frequently used as garbage cans (i haven't seen plant life in some of them for ages). apparently this one got tipped over and shattered. it sure would be nice if north capitol main street, as part of their storefront improvement project, could help make the area in front of this store a more inviting place.

here's a recommendation—some benches or tables. if there are going to be people hanging out in front of the store all the time, might as well give them a place to sit...

a tale of two trees


ok, this is really about more than two trees. it's really about two sets of trees, but i liked the dickensian title, so there you go.first, look at these cherry trees in the median of rhode island avenue between 11th and 12th streets in logan:click on the images and take a closer look. these trees are all mulched, have clearly been watered, and are thriving. now, look at these trees between 7th and 8th streets in shaw:they're almost dead. no much, no water, the leaves have yellowed up and are falling off.why did this happen? the trees are all on district land, and no property owner was obligated to take care of these trees. but, the people who live on the 1100 block of rhode island avenue clearly took the time to care for the trees that they see out their front windows. they just can't say the same for the poor trees on the 700 block. 7-11 clearly isn't interested in aesthetics. the people who live on this block haven't taken the initiative to adopt the trees either. they're likely doomed to die, unless they get some serious and sustained water immediately. isn't this something that the mayor's conservation corps could and should help rectify?[...]

the (formerly) purple house at 1st and U


the house on the southeast corner of 1st and u streets nw (featured to illustrate a city paper article about emergency and transitional housing in ward 5) used to look like this:

after a paint job, it's looking much nicer! (click on the photo and take note of the red trim around the doors and the new crosswalks on 1st street).


update on the beautiful house at 4th and florida


dc metrocentric brings word that the amazing home on the northwest corner of 4th and florida nw is under contract (not sold yet, though). sure hope this building can be brought back to its the glory of its heyday. they didn't have a photograph of the fencing that has gone up around the building, but i captured it in a couple shots last friday. here they are:


tonight's bloomingdale civic association meeting—notes


here are some rough-and-tumble notes from tonight's bloomindale civic association meeting (which was attended by nearly 50 people!):there will be no august meeting, the next one is in septembercassandra costley handed out information about the selective service, where she works. her job entails finding jobs for conscientious objectors (like mennonites or quakers) if there was a draft.massie ritsch, a neighborhood resident who lives on the 200 block of rhode island and is the deputy assistant secretary for external affairs & outreach at the department of education, gave a short talk about goals for the department in the coming years. he specifically mentioned that either the secretary (arne duncan) or an assistant secretary would hold a 'listening session' in the district in the fall to hear from DC parents about schools. he took a couple questions from the audience, which focused on charter schools.aakash thakar of eya gave a quick presentation of where things stand with the mcmillan project. basically, they are still working to have something approved by the council at the end of the year, finalizing the deal that will allow them to go forward with the project. it was noted that clint jackson from the mayor's office was invited but did not show. i thought it was notable that this was the first time that i heard any of the principals from the development groups mentioning light rail or circulator buses as a transit option for the what was (i believe) the most interesting news of the evening, barbara wilson, who lives at 2203 1st street nw, gave an update on the status of neighbor's complaints regarding the 'boxer girl' mural at 73 w street nw. apparently, the money for a mural was initially meant to paint something at 1st and rhode island (here?), but due to challenges, that didn't happen. the owner of 73 w then gave permission to have her house painted instead. alice thompson, from the mayor's office of community relations & services, stated that the mayor's office had contacted the muralist and asked them to "change" the artwork. the muralist has not been back in touch with the mayor's office...leah lemoine from the district department of the environment gave a quick presentation about the river smart homes program. dc residents can sign up for grants of up to $1200 towards rain barrels, landscaping, pervious paving, and other means to help keep water from running off your property. this is especially important in bloomingdale given the propensity for basement flooding in the neighborhood after moderate rainfall.cassandra costley talked about feral cat colonies in the neighborhood. efforts continue to trap and release cats to keep them from reproducing. residents are reminded to contact the humane society, who will come to the neighborhood to do the work necessary to trap cats, give them the necessary medical attention, and safely return them to the neighborhood. she reminded us not to leave food out for cats for a long period of time, as it attracts rats. a thomas street resident let us all know that his 1.5 year old english bulldog died as a result of eating rat poison-laced peanut butter that a neighbor left in the alley to bait cats. everyone was reminded not to try this, as it's illegal (ed.-besides being pretty damn immoral)vicki leonard from harry thomas' office spoke, mentioning some of the councilmember's recent activity.john salatti wanted to let peo[...]