Gentrification and Me issue 4

Am I on number 4 now?

PBS: POV Flag Wars: What is Gentrification

One site, just for definition of what I am talking about. The rest of the site in on the film Flag Wars, a battle for a neighborhood between two “historically oppressed groups” blacks and gays. In my own observations both groups can be downright unpleasant to the other, but luckily, not always…. at least not to the other’s face.

Maybe later I’ll do themes on gentrification: Gays and gentrification; Artists and gentrification; Buppie (Black yuppie) gentrification; Black flight and gentrification; Anti-gentrification groups; DC/Shaw and gentrification.

Someone, John, pointed out a talk that is going to be given at the City Museum October 15 at 6:30 on gentrification and the city. I predict there will be an angry discussion as the topic enflames passions. I plan to go but if it just turns into a yelling match at any point I’m leaving. If I want to see people yell, I’ll go to a civic association meeting with the peanut gallery.

Truxton Fantasy

Truxton Fantasy #1

I ask my best friend Mikey a lot of stupid questions like, if you had $10 million dollars… and such. But today I asked myself a stupid question, if I had the power to change the character and nature of Truxton Cirlce (Eastern Shaw) what would I change it to?


1. I’d make it way easy to catch a cab on New Jersey or Rhode Island, regardless of the hailer’s color or destination. Cabbies are evil and at times hard to find.

2. I’d allow left handed turns on New York Avenue. Anyone who has gotten stuck on NY trying to turn left KNOWS what I’m talking about.

3. I’d put rumble strips on residential roads.

4. Mt. Sinai Baptist would build a parking garage, that residents can use M-F.


1. Diversity balance would be maintained. Meaning families, seniors, whites, blacks, latinos, asians, gays, straights, professionals, blue color workers, low income folks, college kids, teens, natives, immigrants, English-speaking, ESL folks, car people, metro people, joggers, walkers, cyclists, fat/cubby/chunky people, ana-looking women, athletic beautiful people all have a place in the neighborhood.

2. There would be a good critical mass of civic minded involved citizenry who would dedicate themselves to the improvement of the neighborhood. There are such people now, but not a critical mass of them.

3. Residents and guests would respect the people of the neighborhood by not dumping trash in the alleys and on the streets. Nor would they roll through with loud thumping bass. Nor would they honk their horns as an alternative to knocking on their intended’s door.

4. People would take pride in their homes and themselves.


1. There would be 2-3 decent sit down eateries, at least 1 table-cloth’ed restaurant (think Mimi’s not Subways) either in Truxton Circle or along 7th Street between S and P.

2. The commerical strip would be dotted with businesses that promote walking and provide an environment for neighbors and friends to run into one another.

3. There would be only a small handful of liquor stores and those stores would sell only decent quality beverages. Few 40s, few MD 20/20, few Wild Irish Rose. The bulk of their sales would not be from things that get you smashed real fast. They would have a good selection of red wines.

4. A bookstore would exist in my fantasy version of the hood. That or a Krispy Kreme. Actually, I can go downtown for books, give me a Krispy Kreme.

Okay, now I got KK on the brain. If you’ve had a fresh, hot Krispy Creme dougnut, you know what I mean.


Tree boxez in the hood

Pity the poor tree box. My tree box, which face it is pitiful. has a dying basil-something (not sweet basil, I could use sweet basil) and a couple of tansys and a lot of root fiber from what? The tree? Plants long since gone? The tansys?

I’m going to have to redo the whole darned thing. What I have done was use some timbers to make a box, fill it with dirt, throw in some plants, and put up some fencing in one corner. The neighborhood kids gave me a run for my money. I had to yell at them for walking into it and on top of it. The edge fencing, I had to replace plastic, that got broken with metal, of which one was broken. Then there were the adults getting out of cars. Lastly the tree itself, blokcing out all light, evil, evil tree.

I’m thinking I should pull out everything, dig up the root filled dirt, put in some barrier between the tree and the plants so the tree’s roots can’t invade the box, and try to build up the box by another level.

Next, cheap plants.