Category: rants

Confessions of a Grinch

Confession of a Grinch: this is my least favorite time of the year. I know, it’s Christmas and we’re supposed to be happy but the increasing darkness of the days just gets me down. Seeing the sun set at 4:45 PM fills me with low-level dread. December in DC is gloomy, whole days where the golden orb never…



Ivy City: The End of the Line

I originally only knew Ivy City as the end of the line, the final destination of the D4 bus that I would sometimes ride downtown. “Ivy City – wonder where that is?” I would think to myself as the bus chugged its way through K Street traffic, If you live in Northwest DC, vast sections…




Snowzilla Turns DC into a Pedestrian Paradise

Finally, it was here – Snowzilla! Flakes began falling Friday night. Metro closed. Businesses sent their workers home early as snow began piling up on city streets. By dawn on Saturday, the city was covered in a foot of the white stuff – and it was still snowing, coming down in endless sheets. The wind…




The Joy of (Not) Driving

For someone who doesn’t own a car, I do like driving. There’s nothing I like more than a long road trip, especially one out west. Over the summer, I flew out to Colorado and then spent a week driving around, taking in hip Denver neighborhoods, the majesty of Rocky Mountain National Park and the wide…




Making a U-Turn through the Stop U-Turns on Penn Protest

Why doesn’t the DC Department of Transportation (DDOT) protect the bike lane in front of the Wilson Building? That was the subject of the recent protest, Stop U-Turns on Pennsylvania Avenue. Local cyclists (including me) created a human shield to protect those using the bike lane that runs down the center of Pennsylvania Avenue. While…




NPS: Why Won’t You Answer Me?

I recently attended Social Media: What’s the Right Strategy for Your Agency?, a forum put on by the Federal Communicators Network. The event was a roundtable discussion of best practices from social media experts at the CIA (really), VA and USGS, among others. It was a very interesting discussion but one point stood out for…




Fear and Loathing: Life as a Silver Spring Pedestrian

I commute to Silver Spring from DC every day and I hate it. As the train pulls into the station, I see the looming specter of the failed Silver Spring Transit Center and I’m filled with low-grade dread. Why do I hate it so? Bisected by six-lane highways, downtown Silver Spring is a spectacularly pedestrian-unfriendly…




Innovate or Be Mildly Embarrassed

Culture eats strategy for breakfast. – Peter Drucker Dr. David Bray, Chief Information Officer, Federal Communications Commission, mentioned this quote in “Innovate or Die,” a panel discussion on governmental innovation at Collaborate. His point was the leaders must do more than just develop a grand vision for their organization – they must build an innovative culture if…




Metro and the Culture of Organizational Indifference

Every morning, I walk by the empty shell of the Silver Spring Transit Center. It was supposed to be a glorified bus shelter, where people could transfer from one bus to another. Construction began in 2008. Six years and $125 million later and it’s still not open. Why? Because it’s unsafe. The concrete in the…




Coffeeneuring 7: Sex and the City and Cappuccino

Coffeeneuring 7: Illy Date: November 16, 2014 Distance: 6 miles It was chilly on the last day of coffeeneuring (where you bike to seven different coffee shops over seven weeks). Coffeeneuring is always a learning experience for me. You learn things about yourself – like how I don’t have the patience for hipster coffee. And…