Why I Love DC: Mickey

Photo courtesy of furcafe
courtesy of furcafe

“What came first, the music or the misery? People worry about kids playing with guns, or watching violent videos, that some sort of culture of violence will take them over. Nobody worries about kids listening to thousands, literally thousands of songs about heartbreak, rejection, pain, misery, and loss. Did I listen to pop music because I was miserable? Or was I miserable because I listened to pop music?” — Rob Gordon, High Fidelity (film)

DC, I know I love you because you’re so capable of breaking my heart.

I came to town by design in 1996. I was a sailor in the US Navy, and I knew for certain that I wanted to go to grad school at American University and get my Master’s degree in journalism. I campaigned for a transfer from Texas and received it, thanks to the generosity of good shipmates.
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The Daily Feed

A Rock and Roll Opening for a Very Rock Exhibit

Photo courtesy of LaTur
the password is…….Fidelio
courtesy of LaTur

The W Hotel has a history of using their walls to show off cool and interesting art – and using their lounges to throw fabulous parties. Those come together tonight to celebrate the opening of an exclusive photography exhibit, “ROCKED.” These iconic photos of musicians by British “man who shot the seventies” Mick Rock will bring forty years of rarely-displayed images of the performers who defined pop culture to a Washington audience for the first time.

To open the exhibit which is set to run March 2-31, a lavish party will be hosted as part of the “W Happenings” series, including a live performance by Fitz and the Tantrums and a DJ set by Rob Garza and Eric Hilton of local legends Thievery Corporation.

Sound like an amazing party you do not want to miss? You still have until 5pm today to enter to win two VIP passes to attend – along with a signed copy of Mick Rock’s book and an overnight stay at the hotel.

The Daily Feed

Vintage Cabaret Glamour Comes to Strathmore

What is the vintage-lover to do in these winter doldrums? The Washington Ballet’s “Great Gatsby” has been closed for months and yet there are still months to go before that next Seersucker Social. Satisfy your cravings for long pearls and short bobbed hair when, on March 1st, Max Raabe und das Palast Orchester turns the Music Center at Strathmore into an elegant cabaret.

Max Raabe und das Palast Orchester, performs all around the world, drawing on the style and sounds of the 1920s and 1930s, with the thirteen musicians drawing on early jazz, ragtime, classics of the American Songbook, and “German chansons” from Weimar Republic. Attendees are encouraged to dress the part in cloche hats, drop-waist dresses, and dapper suits.

Tickets are available online for $28 to $58.

Food and Drink, The Features

Proposed Food Truck Legislation: What They Mean as the Comments Period Comes to a Close

Photo courtesy of Phaesia2012
Gotta Have it!
courtesy of Phaesia2012

Back in January, the Mayor’s office announced newly proposed food truck legislation that aims to update the more than 30-year-old laws regarding street vending. With the period for public comments ending tomorrow, I spoke with some of the food truck owners in the city about their thoughts on the legislation and what they hope will happen next. If you haven’t sent your comments to the Mayor’s Office and the DCRA yet, you can do so by sending an email to DCVendingRegs@dc.gov by March 1, 5 PM. Those of you that stand with the food trucks can show support by heading to www.passnewregs.org and submitting a letter to the Mayor from there.

After the jump you’ll find more about legislation and what I learned from the food truck owners. And if you’re really curious, you can read the full proposal here (all 67 pages).

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capitals hockey, Sports Fix

Ovie Scores in OT as Caps Come Back to Defeat Islanders 3-2

Photo courtesy of clydeorama

Ovechkin Fist Pump
courtesy of clydeorama

Alex Ovechkin played a terrible game last night. His passes weren’t connecting, he was often out of position, and he turned over the puck repeatedly. He shot wide to the left. He shot wide to the right. But when the game – and perhaps the season – was on the line in overtime, Ovie scored a spectacular goal to win the game and vault Washington back into a playoff spot.

Troy Brouwer set up the overtime heroics by scoring twice in the last four minutes of regulation to lead the come-from-behind victory. New York netminder Evgeni Nabokov was a brick wall through 56 minutes of the game, turning away the first 30 shots he faced. But Brouwer took an aggressive approach, taking his body to the net and scoring both goals from within a few feet of the goal line. Continue reading

Food and Drink, Foodie Roundup, Night Life, The Features

Food Roundup: Best Bar Food

Photo courtesy of LaTur
They may be America’s last pioneers………..
courtesy of LaTur

When I think bars, I naturally think booze. Cocktails, beers, wine, maybe even the occasional shot. But many of the watering holes I frequent either don’t serve food or serve variations of fried things that I wind up eating out of sheer desperate hunger (read: no one wants to drink on an empty stomach). So in this feature, a few of the We Love DC writers and I bring you our picks for some of the bars with the best food. Go out there and a grab a drink, and for heaven’s sake, put down the greasy mozzarella sticks at that dive bar and head somewhere with something good to eat.
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Featured Photo

Featured Photo

Photo courtesy of rpmaxwell
courtesy of rpmaxwell

Black and white photography forgoes the visual brilliance of color to focus more on composition. Ryan demonstrates this to great effect in the picture above. Rather than getting distracted by the colors around the individual, the viewer is pulled right into the communion of the man and his phone. With only his face lit by the glow of the phone’s screen, we get to see his face while the rest of his body is enveloped by the uniform black of his hoodie. Add in his Mona Lisa-esque expression and get to guess what it means; is he happy or angry at what he sees on his LCD screen? Or is it something else? Perfectly composed for us to see whatever we want to see.

Entertainment, The Features, We Love Arts

28th Helen Hayes Awards Nominees Announced

The Oscars maybe in the books but there’s still one more big show in the DC Arts Scene. Tonight the nominations for the 28th annual Helen Hayes Awards were announced in the Helen Hayes Gallery at the National Theatre.

Known as one of the country’s most prestigious cultural honors, the awards recognize the best of DC Theatre of the past year. The awards ceremony is affectionately known as “Drama Prom” (at least to me) and is one of the biggest theatre events of the area. Last year I had a blast covering the event and Jenn and I are excited to cover this year’s festivities.

Without further ado, here are the nominees (with links to our reviews)!

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Music, We Love Music

We Love Music: Spineless Swine @ The Red Palace on 2/23/12 (or “How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love The Smiths”)

Photo by author.

Spineless Swine is a local cover band of The Smiths. They sound great and you should go listen to them sometime. I’ll get back to them in a bit, but first bear with me while I digress.

A mere 10 years ago, I only had in my collection the singles compilation from The Smiths. I hadn’t given them a lot of thought but I liked some of the more easily digestible songs like “Panic,” which protested the state of pop music — a sentiment everyone can embrace completely from time to time. “Panic” also had the easy pleasure that came from lifting a guitar riff from “Metal Guru” by T. Rex, and I always have been a fan of the early 70′s glam musicians like Marc Bolan, David Bowie, and Roxy Music.

It turns out that Steven Patrick Morrissey also had been a fan but he explicitly rejected the direction the musical progeny of those bands took when they went electronic and started crafting sophisticated synth arias. Rejecting music by bands such as Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark in substance and presentation, The Smiths then embarked on a short-lived rock journey that some (including me) say begat britpop.
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Weekend Flashback

Weekend Flashback: 2/24-2/26

Photo courtesy of theqspeaks
The “Phone Booth” after sunset
courtesy of theqspeaks

Wow! I can’t believe *ENTER MOVIE TITLE* won for *ENTER OSCAR CATEGORY*! Everyone was sure that *ENTER OTHER MOVIE TITLE* was going to win that. I guess that’s why they do the award show. Of course, *ENTER ACTOR or ACTRESS’S NAME* got a well deserved nod. You might not be able to tell, but I haven’t cared for the Oscars since Fellowship of the Ring, the superior LOTR movie, lost to that one about the crazy math guy who some how landed Jennifer Connelly. Talk about suspending disbelief. Oh well, what are you going to do; it’s the Oscars!

If you’re sick of the movie news this morning, why don’t you take a minute and check out some photos from the weekend. I promise, they are golden metal man free…though if you’re interested in seeing how some of our author’s did with their picks, check it out here. Continue reading

Education, The Features

Here Are Your 84th Academy Awards Predictions From We Love DC!

Photo courtesy of Kevin H.
Oscar Statuettes
courtesy of Kevin H.

Tonight little gold men will be handed out to Hollywood’s best and brightest while Billy Crystal hams it up with mildly funny jokes.

It’s Oscar Night in America and once again I am here with my picks along with some thoughts from the We Love DC crew and others who shared the same annual tradition as I: to watch as many Oscar nominated films before the Academy Awards as possible.

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capitals hockey, The Daily Feed

Capitals Deport Canadiens, 4-1

Photo courtesy of bhrome
“Matty P” full throttle
courtesy of bhrome

Coming into Friday night’s game against the Montreal Canadiens, the Capitals had been struggling against most of the other teams, posting an abysmal record and generally playing in a funk. Luckily for the Caps, however, the one team they have been dominating as of late was at the other end of the ice this evening.
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Entertainment, The Features, We Love Arts

We Love Arts: Astro Boy and the God of Comics

(l to r) Betsy Rosen, Clark Young, Lee Liebeskind, and JB Tadena in Astro Boy and the God of Comics. Photo: Carol Pratt

“Who is Astro Boy? Where did he come from?”

That phrase was repeated in an audio loop, flowing over cheerful marching music, while actors furiously drew cartoons of an impending horror. It might as well have been my own question, coming into Astro Boy and the God of Comics at The Studio 2ndStage without any prior knowledge of artist Osamu Tezuka or of his cartoon creations. That phrase seemed to be the lynchpin of the play’s meaning. It stayed with me for several days, running through my mind, unwilling to be forgotten.

A real boy dies in a horrible accident. A robot boy is created to take his place.

Created and directed by Natsu Onoda Power, Astro Boy and the God of Comics is a seventy minute riff on creation and destruction from both the creative and historical angles. We learn about the brilliant Tezuka through episodes presented in reverse chronological order – seamless mash-ups of live action, video, projections and puppetry. It’s a dizzying concoction that might almost seem gimmicky if it weren’t for the production’s total commitment to the bright-eyed, vivid intensity of comics.

Honestly? It might be a bit genius.

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Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

Friday Happy Hour: Tonic for Everyday Neuroses

Getting together with friends for a cocktail party is pretty great – but even better if your guests include, say, authors and experts who want to talk about their work, a chef who whips up some very sophisticated morsels, and a terrific mixologist to make the drinks. That is the concept behind Fireside Cocktails by The Coterie. Meeting once a month at Fathom Creative (and, really, I can only dream of having a living room as chic as their second-floor gallery/event space), these events combine some of my very favorite things – intriguing conversation and tasty drinks.
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Downtown, Food and Drink, Penn Quarter, The Features

First Look: New Menu at 901 Restaurant

All photos courtesy of Jessica Zachar

901′s motto, “Sexy. Sophisticated. Sharing.” had me a bit–how do I put it–standoffish, because sometimes you just want Simple. Straightforward. So mine. But last week, the Penn Quarter restaurant debuted their entirely new, revamped menu. One that actually matches the concept. Previously, the menu was haphazard and inspired by: all over the place. But the restaurant owners acknowledged their shortcomings and refocused the food, creating a brand new menu meant to be shared, and with a decidedly Asian flare.

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Food and Drink, Foodie Roundup, The Daily Feed

Food Tweet of the Week: Boxcar Tavern


Photo Courtesy Tricia Barba

Capitol Hill’s Boxcar Tavern should really have more followers. Since the neighborhood establishment opened at the end of December, it’s tweeted 90 times and garnered 83 followers. Maybe if the restaurant tweeted a little more, it could raise that number a bit (note: this is not an invitation to over-tweet!)

@BoxcarDC only follows 7 other users, so immediately I wanted to know who they were. Unsurprisingly, the tweeters were restaurateur Xavier Cervera’s other four restaurants: Molly MalonesLola’s Barracks Bar & Grill, Chesapeake Room and Senart’s Oyster & Chop House, plus @HootSuite, @Twitter and @BarracksRow.

While promotional, Boxcar Tavern’s tweets are funny and informative to denizens who want to know what’s on special everyday. My favorite was a tweet from Tuesday that had that mix down perfectly (and also highlighted my philosophy!) See this week’s winning tweet after the jump.
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Entertainment, Music, The Features, We Love Music

We Love Music Field Trip: Bjork @ New York Hall of Science, 2/18/12

Photo Credit: Julieta Cervantes

While We Love DC typically focuses on events in the Washington, DC metro area, we sometimes make exceptions for special events that are not coming to the area. Bjork‘s performance on Saturday night at the New York Hall of Science is one of those exceptions. The concert was part of her ten-show New York residency in February and March of this year.

It is rare to be at a concert and feel that you are having a once-in-a-lifetime experience; that you’re  truly a part of something monumental. I have been to hundreds of concerts in my lifetime. I have seen Bjork perform five times now. Saturday night’s performance was among the top concerts I’ve ever experienced, and it was more than just a concert- it was a multimedia art extravaganza. It was ground-breaking in many ways, and truly unforgettable. Continue reading