Part of our tradition of giving thanks here at WLDC is to tell you what we’re thankful for about DC this year. How about you? Leave your DC thanks in the comments, and enjoy your festive food coma.
Tiffany: Since late January, 2013 has been all about preparation for and the arrival of this guy. So I’ve clearly got something special to be thankful for this year. But our little DC Native has broadened my appreciation for DC as well. I’m more thankful than ever for DC’s diversity and the breadth of perspectives it will bring him as he grows up. I’m grateful to live in a city with not only local but national cultural amenities, so we can go from story time at our neighborhood DC Public Library branch and head out to the Air & Space museum after lunch. I’m thankful for the tree-lined streets and parks in Brookland, as well as our neighbors who are also putting down roots and starting their families there. And finally, I’m thankful for organizations like Neighbors United for DC Statehood who work to ensure Charlie will be able to vote for a senator when he’s 18 like his peers across the country. Happy Thanksgiving, DC. When I’m counting my blessings this year, you are definitely on the list.
Rachel: As of this month, it’s been two years since I started working on my first full band EP (due out in 2014) with Dave Mallen of Innovation Station Music in Arlington, VA. Since then, I’ve worked to embed myself in the DC music community and can proudly say that I call many of the hard-working names in local music dear friends. I still remember what it felt like to play my first show with The 9 Songwriter Series in February 2012. Fast-forward to November 2013 and I feel like the majority of the friends I’ve made in the past year were all from playing concerts and attending live shows throughout the DC metropolitan area. What I’m most grateful for in 2013 is the fact that music really does bring people together. The DC scene’s got a wealth of talent whether it’s vocalists, songwriters, musicians, producers, sound engineers, videographers, etc. but the scene can only exist if there are fans to support it. And let me tell you, there are lot of great people in this town supporting that talent. To all of the folks who support those of us who love making music and performing it live I say, “THANK YOU!” We couldn’t keep taking the stage in these parts if it were not for your continual support.
Esther: A full decade of living in DC without killing anyone from road rage or ending up homeless because of the astronomical cost of living is enough to be thankful for this season. But there are many other things that ten years in DC has made me grateful for, too. First, the awesome people from a million walks of life who I have been blessed to meet. Second, the tourist sites and museums. Yes, I generally loathe the tourists, but they are a constant reminder that many people spend millions of dollars each year to see the things we have in our backyard and should appreciate. Third, my dog. I know he’s not “DC” but he’s awesome and has pretty much marked the entire city, so I think that counts. Fourth, the wonderful community of local actors, musicians, dancers and artists. They have been my bread and butter and my continuous inspiration. Fifth, congress…… okay, I couldn’t even type that without bursting out laughing from how ridiculous that sounds and what a huge fat lie it is. Last, but not least, I am grateful to live in a place that matters. Where what happens in our little hamlet affects the country and the entire planet. We’re living in a place of historical importance and I love it. Having been raised in Idaho (which people consistently mix up with Iowa), the chance to be in a place people have actually heard of and know generally where it is is really cool. Oh, and pie. Wherever you live, pie is worth giving thanks for.
Rebecca: This Thanksgiving I’m most thankful for all the wonderful friends I’ve made since my move to DC. 2014 will mark the beginning of my 8th year in this city and the start of innumerable friendships, intimate and thought provoking conversations and, ultimately, me becoming who I am today. If I hadn’t come to DC I would not be the person I am today; my varied interests, career, world view, intellectual curiosity and passions are deeply attributable to this diverse and thriving city. When I moved to down here I knew no one. It was through various happenstances (volunteering for WeLoveDC, responding to an open room on Craigslist, taking a leap of faith on a work opportunity….) that I have made so many solid, stand up friends who inspire me to explore life – physically, spiritually, emotionally and interpersonally – and remind me that I am not alone in experiencing and battling the cruel hardships that come with it. These friends or I may move beyond the borders of the district, but DC will always be the place from which these lasting friendships, bonds and deep relationships grew. I Love You DC.
Patrick: I am so thankful for the Metro. No I’m serious. Hear me out. This fall I started a new chapter of my life with a new job, one that wasn’t Metro accessible. After seven years being a metro stop or two away from my office I now have to hop into my car and fight a little traffic to get to and from work. As much as we like to hate on single tracking on the weekends, sometimes you don’t realize how thankful you are for something until it’s gone. What else am I thankful for? Great people of course (even those that live in my neighborhood of Clarendon), great food (like Ravi Kabob House) and great secret places to drink (like Harold Black.) Washington, DC will always be the city for me: not too big, not too small, just right.
Mosley: It’s been a tough year for me, though things are finally turning around. A tough year does put things into perspective and makes you only worry about, and be concerned with, the most important of things. To that end, I’m thankful for family and friends; but more specifically I’m thankful for the knowledge that I have an over abundance of family and friends who care about me and look after me. Not everyone has the chance to say that. Also, I’m so thankful to be living in such a great city! Washington may get crap from the rest of the country that we’re “broken” but that’s only because DC has to fix the problems created by everyone else. It’s an odd thing to be thankful for, but DC is a unique city and I can’t imagine living anywhere else.
Ben: This marks the eighth holiday season in the DC area for my wife and I. I’m truly thankful I have my wife and partner of nearly twenty years to experience every moment here with me, and for my friends who bring a unique accent to each day. In the mornings when I cross the Memorial Bridge, I’m thankful for this city and its unique vista. Working in the heart of the District has not lost its charm for me and I love every moment of it. Sure, there are annoyances all around, from a racist pro team name to a broken Congress on the Hill, but they can’t dampen my continued enthusiasm for the fabric of life in this place. Each day offers me a new opportunity for a photograph, or a scene for an as-yet-written story, or the chance to learn something new. The District and its surrounding environs are rich with life and culture on so many levels and I’m thankful to have that all around me, every day.
Fedward: Well, let’s see. In just the past baker’s dozen months: (A) The Social Chair and I got married within sight of the Capitol (and followed that up with a second wedding that night in the Passenger). (2) We adopted a pair of adorable kittens from the Washington Humane Society. (III) In July we bought a house in Petworth. I can’t think of anywhere but DC that I’d rather be, since this is where all the best things happen. I’m also thankful for the hospitality community that has accepted us as two of its own. If you read the weekend posts here you know we’re regulars at the Passenger, where the Brown brothers and the entire staff treat us as family. That recognition serves as a calling card at bars and restaurants all over town. We’re greeted with smiles (and often hugs) by the warmest, friendliest people in DC, and then they all serve us delicious food and drinks. Who wouldn’t be thankful for that?
Tom: There is so much to be thankful for this year. I continue to be employed, I continue to have a home, and I have a family that, for whatever reason, seems to love me. This year, I want to focus my thanks on those places that make all that happen for other people who might not have those things otherwise. This Thanskgiving I’ll be donating to Bread for the City, DC Central Kitchen, FAN, and DC Coalition for the Homeless to help those who don’t have those things. I’m also thankful for my favorite bar, Boundary Stone, and my favorite people, those here at We Love DC, for keeping me sane amid the tumult.
Paul: Big, big thanks to the staff at We Love DC for their warm welcome and continued encouragement. You guys are awesome! Especially my amazing badass cyborg editor, Jenn, who, every week, transforms the garbled mess of nonsense that I send her into a polished article. The metro (Patrick knows what I’m talking about) for somewhat reliably getting me to work on time and my drunk ass home at night. And thank you Uber for picking up the Metro’s slack whenever I think staying out after last call is the best idea ever conceived by mankind. Huge thanks to the person who started it all, my roommate and best friend, Ben, who convinced me to move here in the first place. And for not getting too jealous when I spend every night making fancy cocktails without him. I should mention my neighbors, who have never complained when I blast New Order at three in the morning. And my roommates, for that matter, who *rarely* complain when I blast New Order at three in the morning. A lot of love to all my coworkers and regulars at Wisdom who have made me feel like a part of the family. You guys are the nicest people I’ve met in DC. Also everyone who has taken an interest in me and helped me hone my craft as a bartender. Specifically Erik Holzherr and Jon Harris, those guys are going to make me a bartender yet. Finally my friends and family back home for making a serious effort to keep in touch and make sure I remember to enjoy myself and not work myself to death. I miss you guys so much and wouldn’t be able to keep going without your constant support. Happy Thanksgiving DC, you’ve been too good to me.
Don: We expanded our family in the trailing end of 2012 so, like Tiff, I have a lot of gratitude that’s related to That Darned Baby. In particular what a lovely, walkable city this is, full of free and/or meaningful things to do with him. I left South Florida to come here more than a decade ago but I’m still amazed by the experience of being in a place with real mass transit (for all its problems) and a wealth of culture, high and low. My son can decide he likes paintings, live music, theater, kayaking, history, science, hockey, baseball, or all the above. He’ll never be more than half an hour from it. And if he really feels like he needs to watch football then, well, there’s always the light rail to Baltimore.
Jenn: Last year I was thankful that I didn’t die. This year I am thankful to be alive. A subtle difference, made all the more poignant by the continued twists and turns my life takes as I wander through the streets of my city. There’s a potent little machine in my chest, at the ready to shock my heart back to life should it fail. I’m thankful for it, and grateful to the incredible cardiac surgeons at Washington Hospital Center who installed it this year – but especially to the anesthesiologist who locked eyes with me right before, and said, “Don’t worry. I got you, baby.” I got you. That’s what DC says to me every morning I wake up and think, what can possibly happen today? That’s what my friends say as they surround me with love and support, lifting me up with laughter. We’ve got you. I’m so thankful for the many people I’ve met since helping to found this site five years ago, dear friends in theaters and restaurant industries that I might not ever have met otherwise. To be brave, be curious, and be astonished by life all over again – that is my aim, and it would be impossible without you. Thank you all.