History, Opinion, Sports Fix, The Features

Hey R**skin Fans, Snyder Cares! (Not Really)

With little fanfare, Washington pro football team owner Dan Snyder slipped a letter out to the team’s fan mailing list this past Sunday. It was a masterful work of self-service. In it, Snyder finally realized there were problems in Indian Country, based on a supposed 26 visits to various reservations around the country. The visits – all cherry-picked to councils who “agree” with him about the “non-offensive” nature of the team’s moniker – apparently opened his eyes to the plight and ills of reservation residents.

Let’s set aside for a moment that Snyder refuses to meet with tribal councils who oppose the name, including the still-open invitation from the Oneida Nation in New York. Snyder quickly jumped to the “hey, there’s more important issues to deal with than changing a football team’s name” defense, pointing out the horrific poverty rates, unemployment, poor health, and abysmal education found on many Native reservations. And yes, these are real problems. Big ones. Continue reading

We Love Arts

Seeing Through the Lens of Award-Winning Photographer Carol Guzy

Carol Guzy with her Dog Trixie, who was rescued from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina

Carol Guzy with her Dog Trixie, who was rescued from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, photo by Will Dolive

By Michael T. Ruhl

You wouldn’t know just casually talking to Carol Guzy that she’s a world class photographer who works for the Washington Post. The humble four-time Pulitzer Prize winner sits quietly in her Arlington home, tending to her dogs, two of which she rescued from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Her living room walls stand largely devoid of her photos, and she doesn’t even display her Pulitzer Prizes. The only indicators of a photographer in that room are a few old cameras sitting on the shelves. Her passion isn’t advertised, but poke her and she bleeds. Continue reading

The Daily Feed

Glee Live In Concert Comes To Washington

Photo courtesy of
‘Glee Second Season’
courtesy of ‘John Ashbrook’

D.C. area Gleeks were snubbed the first time Glee decided to do a live tour aka last year. A Gleek’s only hope was once a long-shot chance of scoring an Easter Egg Roll ticket for a trip to the White House. Until this morning, that was the same case for D.C. Gleeks in 2011, unless they scored tickets to the shows in Philadelphia or New York City.

Good news, Gleeks. Glee live in concert is coming to the Verizon Center Thursday, June 9!

The second season main cast including Lea Michele (Rachel), Cory Monteith (Finn), Amber Riley (Mercedes), Chris Colfer (Kurt), Kevin McHale (Artie), Jenna Ushkowitz (Tina), Mark Salling (Puck), Dianna Agron (Quinn), Naya Rivera (Santana), Heather Morris (Brittany), Harry Shum, Jr. (Mike), Chord Overstreet (Sam) and Darren Criss (Blaine) are scheduled to perform. Continue reading

capitals hockey, The Daily Feed

Caps Lose Tight Game to Pens in Shootout

DSC_9428

It wasn’t everything the Caps wanted for Christmas, but it came pretty close.

The Washington Capitals lost in the shootout last night to the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins. Drama filled? This game had it in spades. You’d think a game like that would be a great centerpiece for a sports reality show or something… Maybe HBO Sports could get on that?

Despite the 3-2 loss, the Caps have a lot to be pleased about. Going into tonight, the Caps were on a two game win streak after a brutal eight game tailspin. The wins came against Ottawa and New Jersey, not exactly tough challenges for the Caps to overcome. Last night’s game against the rival Penguins was a true test of grit, and the Caps passed with flying colors. No fan should be hanging their head this Christmas.

“We’re back. We’re back to the style of hockey we can play,” said defenseman Karl Alzner. “That was one of the questions that [was] going around. Hopefully, we silenced a few of them. We had a low scoring game and we played solid for 60-minutes. It was a grade-A effort from our team. That’s what we like to see.”

Continue reading

capitals hockey, The Daily Feed

Backstrom, Ovie Sink Isles

Photo courtesy of
‘DSC_7711′
courtesy of ‘bhrome’

The two biggest questions the Caps had going into last night’s contest with the New York Islanders were: “When is Nicklas Backstrom going to score?” and “Is the power play ever going to be effective?”

Both questions were answered with less than four minutes remaining in regulation; Backstrom’s deflection of an Alexander Ovechkin slap shot on the power play proved to be the game winner in a 2-1 win for the Caps.

Granted, Backstrom got an assist on Ovechkin’s second period goal, but you could tell he wanted more. Having been demoted to the second line at the start of the game, swapping places with Tomas Fleischmann, Backstrom was put back on the first line at the start of the second, and that’s when things began to click. “I thought they needed a break,” Coach Bruce Boudreau explained after the game. “And by the start of the second period, I thought they’d had a long enough break.” The strategy seemed to work. “Once (Backstrom) got the assist I just knew he was going to get more, because he never stops at just one once he gets a little bit of a roll going.”

The Caps came into the game having converted only 1 of their last 13 power play attempts. The Islanders gave the Caps plenty of chances to redeem themselves; it was the last power play opportunity that produced Backstrom’s game winner. The team now sits at converting 2 for 17, a dismal 11%, compared to last year’s league-dominating 25%.

Things looked a bit rocky at the start. The Caps were sluggish and let the Islanders dominate in their end. Even an early fight by new winger DJ King failed to provide much spark. King took on Trevor Gillies in the corner less than three minutes into the game in a rousing fight. It was an rousing introduction for the fiesty winger to the Verizon Center crowd, despite his eventual takedown by Gillies. Continue reading

Featured Photo

Featured Photo

Photo courtesy of
‘View from Balcony of the SAAM, Washington, DC’
courtesy of ‘B Jones Jr’

DC often has a small town feel. You constantly run into friends and friends of friends while wandering around. And everyone seems to know everyone.

Once in a while, the city even looks like a small town. Look at this shot by Bill Jones. It’s taken from the commanding and beautiful Smithsonian American Art Museum building, looking down upon the Hotel Monaco and the Spy Museum. All of these, big buildings, big businesses. And yet. They aren’t tall buildings. They aren’t wide intersections.

This looks like it could be any small town in Colorado, or Pennsylvania. Replace the modern cars with horses, and it could be any town in the wild west. But it isn’t. It’s just another intersection in our town. Our small town.

Essential DC, Fun & Games, History, Special Events, Sports Fix, The Daily Feed

BREAKING: Strasburg may Start June 4

Photo courtesy of
’4TH’
courtesy of ‘MissChatter’

The rumor mill has it that the second comi…. I mean Steven Strasburgs’ major league debut will be on the June 4 game against the Cincinnati Reds. For those of you living in caves, Steven Strasburg is one of the hottest prospects in the history of major league baseball, and certainly the top for 2010.  The Nats picked him up with their first round draft pick last year and sent him to the minors for some conditioning. In the minors he’s pitched just over a 1 ERA with around 1 strike out per inning.  That’s scary.  His start promises to be one of the biggest events in Nats history. The game will sell out, so buy those tickets quick.  At this point, the cheap seats are already sold.

The Daily Feed

Washington Iconic Structures

Photo courtesy of
‘Pillars’
courtesy of ‘Skigle’

The National Building Museum is opening a new exhibit called A Century of Design: The U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, 1910-2010. The CFA advises the President and Congress on “matters of design and aesthetics” that affect government buildings and the preservation of national monuments.  On display from May 15 through July 18, the new exhibit will pay homage to the influential role that the CFA has had on 10 major projects in D.C. – from the Lincoln Memorial to even our beloved (or loathed, depends on the day) Metro System.

In commemoration of the exhibit, on May 19th from 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM, the National Building Museum will co-host Power, Architecture, and Politics: The U.S. Commission of Fine Arts and the Design of Washington – a symposium that will further explore the essence and influence of the CFA.

capitals hockey, Special Events, Sports Fix, The Features

2010 Eastern Quarterfinals: Capitals vs. Canadiens

Photo courtesy of
‘DSC_6297′
courtesy of ‘bhrome’

Finally.

After what seemed like weeks of waiting – ever since the Olympics were over, really – the Washington Capitals finally enter the NHL postseason. First opponent in the opening salvos of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals?

The Montreal Canadiens.

The Caps desperately want to get the right skate forward this year; after last year’s rough start dropping the first two games at home against the Rangers, it’s something the team is aching to move past. And by all accounts from various team sources the last couple of days, they’re not only aware of it, they’re chomping at the bit to roll.

Despite the Habs’ recent struggles, however, the Caps cannot enter the series tomorrow taking Montreal for granted. True, the Habs enter the postseason after only notching three wins in their final 11 games. And true, forward Michael Cammalleri hasn’t been nearly as effective in his first nine games after knee surgery, nor has the netminder situation been anything spectacular. No team enters the NHL’s “second season” not wanting the prize at the end of the two-month campaign.

Let’s not kid around – both of these teams want the Stanley Cup. Montreal, to start its next century off right after last year’s dismal failure to celebrate their 100 years in style. Washington, to finally grab the golden ring of hockey that has been oh-so-close only a handful of times in its young (relative to Montreal) hockey existence.

So let’s look over the keys to Round One, starting here in the District on Thursday at 7 p.m.

Continue reading

Business and Money, Life in the Capital, News, The Daily Feed, The District, We Green DC

DC Bag Tax Nets $150,000 For Anacostia River Clean Up

Photo courtesy of
‘Reusable Giant Bags’
courtesy of ‘Mr. T in DC’

The District’s 5-cent bag tax, which started in January 2010,  netted approximately $150,000 during its first month of enactment. According to the D.C. Office of Tax and Revenue, only 3 million bags were issued in the month of January compared to 2009′s 22.5 million bags per month average, and it appears that the new law DC shoppers has been successful in altering  shopping bag habits faster than was expected.

Prior to enactment, the new tax was estimated to generate $10 million in revenue over the next four years and would fund the Anacostia River Cleanup Fund. Given January’s results it appears that consumer behavior has changed so rapidly that this revenue may fall short of its original projection.

All Politics is Local, History, Life in the Capital, Special Events, The Daily Feed

White House Staff: A History

Photo courtesy of
‘DC’s Biggest Postcard’
courtesy of ‘kimberlyfaye’

If someone on the street asked me to list the job titles at the White House, first on the list would be the President, VP, Chief of Staff, the news core, Press Secretary, etc…you know the people we constantly see in our national and local news reports.

But what about the behind the scenes people?  I’m not talking about the administration people, or those who do the glamorous, high powered functions, I’m talking about the guys and gals that service the place and walk secretly among DCers. Who are they?!! What’s their story? How do they make White House tick? How have their roles changed from administration to administration?

The answer is to be found at “The Working White House: 200 Years of Tradition and Memories,” at the White House Visitor Center, now through Feb. 28. The exhibit showcases the history of White House serving staff and other workers from the time of William Taft through George W. Bush.

Can’t wait for them to update the exhibit with how things have changed with the addition of the White House garden and Bo the dog.

News, The Daily Feed, WTF?!

BREAKING: Fire Bombs in NW DC

twitpic
Photo by Allen Combs

A reader and WUSA 9 report that a man threw Molotov cocktails into the intersection at 17th and K St..  He was apparently holding a sign that said “Justice” on top of a van with “Not my $200 Million” emblazoned on the side.  It is not clear exactly what he was protesting.  Police arrived on the scene quickly and took the man into custody.  At this point, it appears that no one was hurt, although traffic is stopped at the intersection in question.  We’ll get back to you with more details as they become available.

Update 3:05: DC Fire and EMS Twitter reports a suspicious package in the van.

Update 3:08: Live video feed of 17th and K St. intersection.

Update 3:13:  One of the entrances to Farragut North is closed due to the incident.

Update 3:20: Officers seem to be moving around the van without much trepidation.  The suspicious package appears to have been a false alarm.

Update 3:27: Van driven away by police.  It appears as though the incident is wrapping up.  Can any readers on the scene confirm the Molotov cocktails?

Update 3:50: Intersection is reported to be clear.  Just in time for it to get gridlocked by Maryland drivers during rush hour!

Update 4:00: Several witnesses (thanks Sean!) report that there weren’t actually any Molotov cocktails, after all.  WUSA 9 still reports that 3 were thrown.

Food and Drink, Sports Fix, The Daily Feed, WTF?!

$7.50? You freakin’ kidding me?

Expensive beer

I had never seen beer this expensive before going to a Nationals game. Sure I had a good time, but that $7.50 beer stuck in my craw a little. I just got invited to go to another game and will likely go but will likely not buy a beer or even a bottle of water, since the water costs what a beer should cost.

What do you do to enjoy a cool drink at the ball game? Do you bend over and pay the $7.50? Drain a 12-pack on Metro on the way over? Smuggle a flask into the ballpark? I’d love to hear your solutions to this.

Petworth

Why I Love DC: Wayan


Photo by mosley.brian

After five hours crammed into this seat on a red-eye from San Francisco, I can tell by the shift in the plane, that we’ve started our decent into IAD. Its another bi-coastal BBQ week for me, and I can’t wait to be home.

Home, where the South Asian driver of the Washington Flyer taxi and I will have a long talk about Pakistani politics as we glide past iconic symbols of our nation and then drop into the green valley of Rock Creek park.

Home, where my block party neighbours will be just waking, about to take their morning walks around the neighbourhood, where I shall soon join them with my personal Taxi in tow.

Home, where my half-million dollar mortgage shelters my still-sleeping wife, who let’s me travel even with a Ziggy on the way.

Home, where after a decade I feel I have found my place, my life, a whole community of good friends and great times that make me love this great city.

Home, I love Washington DC because its my home.