Metro: I guess I could vote with my feet, or a bike or an Uber

MetroI wonder if a third day will be the charm?

Yesterday during my commute home an old guy was panhandling on the train. He asked for change, I said I didn’t have any. I had my headphones in and was listening to a podcast, so I didn’t clearly hear whatever it was he first mumbled. But as people began filing out he said quite clearly, “I’m gonna spit in your face.” Thankfully, he didn’t and he got off the train at Gallery Place. Today it was a gang of teenagers on a crowded train during rush hour. I’ll say about 10 or so African American teens got on at Gallery Place loudly packing into one end of the train. One of them decided to throw ice, someone complained, and then they decided to push through to the other end of the train. They insulted an African American senior citizen as they pushed through. Once on the other end, they caused some commotion that at few in their party decided to film. The commotion was enough to get a few commuters, including myself, to flee the train when it pulled into Mt. Vernon Square. I reported the incident to @WMATA and MyMTPD and got back the same sort of answer I normally get when I report things.

Well, maybe I should walk or get back to biking to work instead? But the problem hasn’t been my commute in. My commute in is more positive/neutral than negative. My commute back is mostly okay but then I have 15 minutes of unpleasantness that pops up from time to time. In the afternoon I’m more likely to encounter rowdy school-kids, drunks, panhandlers, crazy people, trash, and bad smells. My work pays for my commute but sometimes free doesn’t seem worth it.

Afternoons like this make me reconsider getting a bike and cutting back on metro. I know ridership is down for various reasons, reasons being people have other options to using public transit. There are days when I could telework, but I’m not as productive at home. I could also try doing 10 hour flex-time days to limit how many times I have to come in. I’m too cheap to use Uber-pool on a regular basis. I’m still a fair weather biker, and becoming more hard-core would help me lose weight.

Anyway, there are people who are undermining public transit by adding misery to it. If the people who add to WMATA’s bottom line stop using the system, and decide to stay home, carpool, Uber, bike, walk, or drive their own personal vehicle, it’s going to take longer to get back to good.

Sex, consent and local government- trigger warning

Crop of Marion Barry Vincent Gray
Credit: dbking via a Creative Commons License
Last night our Truxton Circle book group came together to talk about Dream City by Harry Jaffe and Tom Sherwood. It was my second time with the book. The first time I “read” (I cheat with audiobooks), it was prior to the #metoo movement and the many public discussions and arguments that regarding sexual and romantic relationships.

Just a quick review of the book: it is a sandwich. It’s local government bread holding a rise and fall and rise and decline of Marion Barry fixin’s. It’s about 75% Barry, going into his rise from his civil rights days as a student, to his messy relationships with and use of women, and his challenges with substances from booze to drugs.

Considering “Mayor for Life” Barry’s struggles with drugs, that horse has dang near beaten to death. However, Barry and women hasn’t really been reviewed in light of the new zeitgeist. This is probably because a)he’s dead and b) many women who enabled and or had sexual relationships with Barry are still alive and may still be involved in local government.

But back to the book and my title regarding consent, there were two ‘scenes’ in the book that struck me. There was one event that shocked me the first time I was aware of it. The authors’ claimed that in a hotel room in the Caribbean, various women were shuttled to Barry’s hotel room under the promise that the women could get jobs with the city government. Barry was under the influence and when one woman expressed not wanting to have sex with the mayor, he forced himself on her. The authors did not use the word “rape” for this instance, but it was rape. The other incident happened when the police were called to the apartment of a woman because of a disturbance. When the police arrived, the woman refused to let the police in because Mayor Barry was hiding in her bedroom. She protected and provided sexual favors to the Mayor because she did not want to endanger her program that needed city government support.

That second incident got me thinking, if a city contract or grant or job is in play is the sex consensual? If you swap out Barry for Harvey Weinstein and the grant/contract for a role in a movie, is it different? This also reminded me of the July 10, 2009 Washington City Paper headline, “You Put Me Out in Denver, ‘Cause I  Wouldn’t Suck Your ____” As I remember the lady in question was a city contractor and Barry was a City Councilman at the time. If she did provide the sexual act, would that have been consensual? Was the relationship consensual? It sure wasn’t ethical.

Yes, powerful men in this town have been receiving sex for jobs, money, votes, or whatever since they moved the capitol from Philadelphia. However, Barry’s corruption and problems with women was such an open non-secret, like Harvey Weinstein in Hollywood, but more in your face. Despite everyone knowing, too many people did not care if he had consent or not.

An usual murder in Shaw

As far as I can tell, and I can’t tell much, a man was murdered on the 1600 block of New Jersey Avenue NW. The MPD press release has the 3rd District responding so, I’ll guess it is the even side of the street.

Noe Alberto Gallardo Ponce was attacked somewhere on the 1600 blk of NJ Ave NW and first responders found him in his home? The press release says a residence. What makes his death unusual among Shaw deaths is that a suspect was arrested the same day the victim died, and the suspect shares a name with the victim, William Alexander Marrouquin Gallardo. And as far as I can tell this wasn’t a firearms related death. Actually no cause of death was stated.

MPD Press Release “Arrest Made in a Homicide: 1600 Block of New Jersey Avenue, Northwest

Power to the People: Let Residents Ticket

DC has an enforcement problem. Illegal construction. Residency for DC Schools. Traffic. Parking. Just having a law on the books does not solve the problem. Also there are activities that local MPD won’t deal with unless they observe the illegal action with their own eyes. So calling 911 a dozen times won’t result in diddly or squat. It is very frustrating.

Part of the problem is the city has decided that only the city can enforce its laws. Well that would be great if it did.

Van illeagally parkedI have a suggestion. Empower DC residents to ticket. Have DC residents provide the kind of evidence that would be admissible in court, via an app specifically for parking violations that would guide the citizen in what kind of images are needed to prove the parking violation. There are hundreds of cyclists who would love to ticket the various cars and delivery trucks that take up bike lanes. There may be several dozen people who would to ticket… and tow (if they could) the cars that park in their individually assigned handicap parking spots, as well those blocking curb cuts.

Maybe when the city actually enforces the law, with its own people, a contractor charging millions, or Lord forbid its own citizens, maybe people will actually respect and follow the law.

Slugg- A book Truxton Circle should read

I was only halfway through the book when I thought, everyone in Truxton Circle, at least those in the Hanover Area, should read. It’s a book those who are buying the Chapman Stables Condos should consider reading, so they can appreciate (maybe) what was there before.

I didn’t suggest Slugg: A boy’s life in the age of incarceration by Truxton resident Tony Lewis Jr. because the last book our book group made was not in audio or e-book format. So I wasn’t at the last gathering, but whoever from our Truxton Circle reading group made a good choice.

It gives a history of the unit block of Hanover Street NW in the southern region of Truxton Circle in the 1980s and 1990s. The whole neighborhood has transformed since those decades and the Hanover area is still transforming. If you think the area is rough, because of S.O.M.E. and other things over there, Mr. Lewis tells his story of the violence witnessed and maybe some of the ‘why’ that violence was there.

It is a very easy read. I read the first chapter quickly and saved the rest of the book for a time when I could sit. I have an energetic 1 year old. I finished the rest of the book in one day and there are a lot of points I’d like to explore more in other blog posts.

What what? Lewd act on 7th St NW in the middle of the day

So looking at the MPD listserv I spotted this:

August 22, 2018

Arrest Made in a Misdemeanor Sexual Abuse and a Lewd and Indecent Acts Offense: 1400 Block of 7th Street, Northwest

(Washington, DC) – Detectives from the Metropolitan Police Department’s Sexual Assault Unit have announced an arrest has been made in connection with a Misdemeanor Sexual Abuse and a Lewd and Indecent Acts offense that occurred on Monday, August 6, 2018, in the 1400 block of 7th Street, Northwest.

At approximately 2:58 pm, the victim was walking at the listed location. The suspect approached the victim from behind and engaged in sexual contact with the victim. The suspect then exposed himself to the victim and committed a lewd act. The suspect then fled the scene.

On Tuesday, August 22, 2018, pursuant to a DC Superior Court custody order, an 18-year old male, of Northwest, DC was arrested and charged with Misdemeanor Sexual Abuse and Lewd and Indecent Acts.

I’m glad someone, hopefully the right person, was arrested.

Please ID A ‘Person of Interest’ Regarding Armed-Gun Robbery

So this person, is wanted as a person of interest. The DC Police tweeted on July 20th a report of an armed robbery at the Unit block of Florida Ave NW, in Truxton Circle.

So here is the video of a person of interest related to that robbery at a chicken place on H St NE, buying what I gather is chicken.

If you can figure out who this person is, contact MPD by calling 911 (I guess since they don’t give any other number to reach them). You might just get one more idiot with a gun, who shouldn’t have a gun, off the streets.

Package Thieves Are Horrible People

They are horrible people because they don’t seem to care that they are captured by home cameras. I have said on several occasions there should be a YouTube channel just of package thieves thieving in the District of Columbia. However, I probably wouldn’t watch it because I’m really sick and tired of seeing people in my ethnic group stealing packages from steps and porches.

So here’s a photo of a guy who stole a package from my block last week.

I don’t know if he’s the same thief who stole a few other packages that same week from another house on our block, because that camera was too high up and the thief’s baseball cap hid his face. This camera getting a decent view of this jerk’s face was one of those doorbell cameras… which is great if you have a working doorbell.

Package thieves are horrible low scummy people because many times they don’t want what they stole. You ordered a medicine ball, and some a-hole stole it from your stoop, then they tossed it in the trash. Or worse, your mother crocheted a baby blanket for your new child, and a dumb donkey swiped it off your porch and they threw it in a treebox when they realized it had no street value.

Yes, I know the Amazon Locker Kelin at the 7-11 doesn’t take everything, there are no Etsy lockers, and you may not have a relationship with someone who lives in a building with a desk clerk or cool with a local business who can take your package. You may be like me and you can’t get packages at work, so what to do? I use a mix of sending things to my spouses’ workplace, sending things to a stay/work at home or retired relative/ friend/ former co-worker, the Amazon storefront in College Park, and sending small items that should fit in my mailbox to my home.

An Appreciation of the Now: Fewer gunshots, fewer killings

If this was a decade ago in Shaw you’d be asking yourself. Fireworks? or Gunfire? It could have been either, or both. One of the nice things about gentrification, fewer gun shots ringing through the night. Sometimes through someone’s window.

R St blockedI’ve been thinking about a website that is still up but no longer updated, DC Homicide Watch (2010?-2014) run by a husband and wife team Chris and Laura Amico. Their documentation of every death, not just the gun victims, but also the stabbing and domestic/ child abuse victims, made them special. As far as I was concerned they were doing the Lord’s work. They not only acknowledged the life that was lost, but provided a place for that person’s friends, associates and loved ones express their grief and loss. There were several Truxton Circle victims, I don’t miss the makeshift street memorials that were a common site around the neighborhood.

There is a site that has picked up the torch of documenting every death in the District of Columbia, DC Witness. I have trouble with the layout and it doesn’t seem to want to work properly on old testy computers. I have to go back to the Google search page to find a version of the site that doesn’t seem to crash my browser. There is a beauty in simplicity.

Miss L Ainy: Friday 6/22/2018

View inside commerical spacePot Pop Up Po-po-ed

So 1712 3rd Street NW got busted by the MPD for hosting a “Marijuana Pop Party” yesterday. It was a problem, mainly because pot stinks. But it wasn’t the real stuff. When I was last sitting out on the ANXO patio with the Babyman, I could smell the fake pot which smells way worse than real pot. There were 11 arrests, fewer arrests than the other pot pop ups (you kids and your pop up whatevers) the DC Police busted around town.

Daycare Lawsuit Continues Forward

I don’t have anything to add to this in that I’m just keeping an eye on it. I have already expressed my concerns in an earlier post. The city is trying to throw the case out.

and yes I do see the humor that DC is requiring a college degree when

25% of DC Teachers Don’t Have Certifications

meh.

So the Washington Post reported as well on DC teacher certifications. My honest response is *shrug*.

Many moons ago when I had nearly finished up my economically useless History graduate degree, I interviewed for a teaching position at a traditional private New England girl’s boarding school. The expectation was that the new teacher would learn that school’s style of ‘teaching’ on the job. You don’t need teaching certifications to teach at expensive private schools. You do need to know your topic.

Because of the Babyman, we’ve been exploring education options. So we’ve been talking to co-workers and friends who have been to private schools. Apparently the key to a high quality education is scary nuns. I don’t think scary nuns have to be certified.