Category Archives: chocolate city

Things Still Untouched by Gentrification in DC

1. “The Shrimp Boat” in NE.

2. Fat Face Bar-B-Que – I see a white person or two in there from time to time, but hey that’s always been the case.  Who doesn’t love delicious soul food?

3. The Open Mic Scene on U Street – The whole sad, non-rhyming white poetry thing hasn’t over taken the “Def Poetry Jam” style of most black poetry.

4. Go-Go Music

5. Marshall Heights – I don’t care how many condos they tried to put over there.  Still Marshall Heights.

6. Minnesota Ave Metro station at night

7. Horace and Dickie’s – Until they sell fried tofu or an avocado and fish sandwich…they are untouched.  LOL

8. Safeway in Petworth – All I can say is yuck.

9. The Homelessness Problem has not improved – Shouldn’t it get better with gentrification?

10. Single Black Women complaining about not being able to find a good man – What about all these good, employed white boys walking around, sis?

This is not a comprehensive list.  So much more could be said.  Wash DC people, what would you add to this list.

Update: I stand corrected.  The Shrimp Boat IS in NE. I placed it in SE.  My bad, Yall!

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I might have to put my DC apartment on Blast

Ok, so when you don’t feel happy and comfortable in your home, apartment or otherwise, it can take a toll on how you feel all day and your overall disposition. I just moved in to an apartment real close to Fort Totten Metro Station and I’m going through hell.  I want to get out of the lease and I’ve been there less than 2 weeks.  The word is LOUD!  Crazy loud.  I think my apartment building was made out of tissue paper.

I went through a lil taste of hell trying to get a mortgage on a NE condo (Sept to Nov).  The deal fell through when the appraisal came up $13,000 too short.  The reason for the shortfall was clear…the appraiser was looking at unequal comps.  In the end…deal fell through.  It was a painful experience.  I was hoping to move into a new apartment and relax.  I lived in this building before so I thought things would be ok.  The issue is that I used to live on the top floor in a corner unit.  Now I’m in a high traffic area of the building and the clientele on my level is very interesting.

I’m trying to work things out and there is a termination clause in the lease.  It requires 60 day notice and one months rent though.  If I moved and had to comply with that…I’ll be out approx 2000-2300 dollars (depending on when I move).  If I have to be out that much money because they don’t have the decency to have a 30 day satisfaction clause (I know, I should have checked before I moved in), I’m going to have to use all my social media skills to make my disdain known.  I know the law…no defamation.  However, I have the right to air my complaint and I will record the noise and let the public weigh in.   Shoot!  I think it would be a great experiment and a lot of people have the same complaints about where they live.

They know my complaints.  I should find out by tomorrow whether they will let me out in 30 days and if I will have to pay a fee.  I’ll keep ya posted.

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Talent Line-up Released for Lincoln Memorial Inauguration Event

I am so excited that I live in DC!  I will be at the Lincoln memorial front and center.  Oh my goodness, Stevie Wonder, Mary J Blige, John Legend, Beyonce, Herbie Hancock, Usher, Will.i.am, Jamie Foxx, and good Lord…Denzel Washington.  I will be there.  If it was just Stevie Wonder, it would be a treat, but with the line up they have planned it’s going to be a Celebration.  Here are the details.

Be there Sunday, January 18th!  The event will be free and open to the public.

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American Music Inaugural Ball

Who: Dionne Warwick will host
When: Jan. 20; there will be two balls–the Legends Ball from 8:00 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. and the Urban Ball from 8:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.
Where: Wardman Park Marriott, 2660 Woodley Rd NW, Washington, D.C.
Tickets: Legends Ball $450; Urban Ball $350; both $650. See Web site for more information.
Why You Want to Attend: Star-studded cast: Co-hosted by gospel star Yolanda Adams the “Legends Ball” will feature performances by Rodney Atkins, George Clinton, Chaka Khan, Marvin Sapp, The Temptations (Dennis Edwards), Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes, Kirk Franklin, the H.B. Barnum Orchestra, The Caravans and Smokie Norful.

The “Urban Ball”, co-hosted by Big Boi of Outkast, will feature performances by T-Pain, David Banner, Athena Cage, Cedric The Entertainer, The Cheetah Girls, Fantasia, Lil Jon, Monica, Bella Steez and Bobby Valentino.

Presenters include Isaiah Washington, former NBA stars Jalen Rose, Kenny “The Jet” Smith and Reggie Miller, Tracey and Alonzo Mourning and current Washington Redskins defensive end Jason Taylor who recently appeared on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.”

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I need tickets: Oprah bringing show to DC for Obama’s inauguration

Props to DCist for Twittering this…lol. I need tickets people. I’m going to be on Oprah’s website day and night looking for those tickets. Oh my goodness I will be getting no sleep from Jan 19-20…good Lord.

Access Hollywood gets the credit for the big scoop that Oprah Winfrey has announced she will bring her wildly popular television show to Washington for the presidential inauguration. The media magnate said she will broadcast from the Kennedy Center’s Opera House during the week of Jan. 20.

Washington is “the place to be,” she told the entertainment program.

The New York Times says Oprah will tape one show here for sure on Jan. 19, and then likely one more show that week, though the date is not yet confirmed. We’d put our money on Jan. 21.

We can almost hear her introducing her first show broadcast from our fair city now …

“Hellooo DEE-CEEEEEeeeee!”

Information about how to get tickets will be posted on Oprah.com next week.

Note: This post was quoted by the Wash Post Express. YAY!

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Gentrification in DC: Can a sista find a decent beauty supply store?

I spent at least an hour yesterday trying to find a decent, open beauty supply store catering to African American women and their hair care needs in NW Washington DC. Couldn’t be found, People!!

Now I know you’re saying, “Sista, why are you blaming gentrification??”. Well, simply put…the clientele has changed thus the products and services available (and the times when they are available too) has changed. That’s what happens with gentrification. Hell, that’s what happens with change. Things change, this is life.

There is a great beauty supply on Georgia Ave near Howard University (was closed) and another across from the Giant on P St NW (closed). Where did I start my search? Columbia Heights (at the Target. They didn’t have what I was looking for and a “black” beauty suppy would.). No beauty supply stores in columbia heights?? Oh, I wonder why. Sisters, let me know if you have any suggestions.

Do I really have to go to PG county to get what I need, really? Where is a Sally’s when you need one. Dag.

Next thing you know i won’t be able to find any Chinese Food (which is good cause I don’t need to eat that), no Soul Food resturants, and no Nail Salons with bright neon colored polish that will do a french tip on your big toe (I think that’s so ghetto…I’m sorry…I really do).  LOL!  I can’t find a beauty supply, but I’ve seen at least 3-5 new wine stores (wine stores…not liquor stores…there is a difference) in the same area of NW I’m talking about here.

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Retired Black White House Butler Talks About His Experience, Obama

Eugene Allen, 89, a retired White House butler, tries on his old tuxedo for a photo. Allen, who served eight presidents during a period when America ‘s racial history was being rewritten, is marveling at the election of Barack Obama.

The butler sees a new White House
Now retired, he started when blacks were in the kitchen.

By Wil Haygood LA Times November 7, 2008

Reporting from Washington — For more than three decades, Eugene Allen worked in the White House, a black man unknown to the headlines. During some of those years, harsh segregation laws lay upon the land.

He trekked home every night to his wife, Helene, who kept him out of her kitchen.

At the White House, he worked closer to the dirty dishes than to the Oval Office. Helene didn’t care; she just beamed with pride.

President Truman called him Gene. President Ford liked to talk golf with him. He saw eight presidential administrations come and go, often working six days a week.

“I never missed a day of work,” Allen said.

He was there while racial history was made: Brown vs. Board of Education, the Little Rock school crisis, the 1963 March on Washington , the cities burning, the civil rights bills, the assassinations.

When he started at the White House in 1952, he couldn’t even use the public restrooms when he ventured back to his native Virginia . “We had never had anything,” Allen, 89, recalled of black America at the time. “I was always hoping things would get better.”

In its long history, the White House — note the name — has had a complex and vexing relationship with black Americans.

“The history is not so uneven at the lower level, in the kitchen,” said Ted Sorensen, who served as counselor to President Kennedy. “In the kitchen, the folks have always been black. Even the folks at the door — black.”

Before Gene Allen landed his White House job, he worked as a waiter at a resort in Hot Springs , Va. , and then at a country club in Washington .

He and wife Helene, 86, were sitting in the living room of their Washington home. Her voice was musical, in a Lena Horne kind of way. She called him “Honey.” They met at a birthday party in 1942. He was too shy to ask for her number, so she tracked his down. They married a year later.

In 1952, a lady told him of a job opening in the White House. “I wasn’t even looking for a job,” he said. “I was happy where I was working, but she told me to go on over there and meet with a guy by the name of Alonzo Fields.” Continue reading

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DC Celebrates the Obama Victory

So far, this is the only clip I’ve found about the party in DC last night/this morning. The clip doesn’t really do justice to what happened out there. Yes, we were there early this morning like we didn’t have to go to work, but we HAD to be there. Obama’s win was way too big to go to bed and just be satisfied with reading about it the next day. There were fireworks, people in the streets, people beating on drums, lots of dancing with random strangers, and okay, I did a cartwheel in the middle of the street… Even the bus drivers were honking a funky beat as they drove down the streets. U Street in DC was like a parade. All I can say is that the Inauguration parties will be CRAZY…think mardi gras.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/video/2008/11/05/VI2008110500782.html?
hpid=multimedia1&hpv=national

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Do Not Wear Obama Shirts to the Polls: It’s not personal, it’s just the law

Wouldn’t you just know it…another way to hinder people from voting…tisk tisk.

Mr. T in DC gave the heads up to Washington DC folk on his blog about this (below). It’s basically like walking into your polling place with a big campaign sign. This isn’t a concert :) it’s a democratic process, so I’m sure we can all put a jacket over our shirts till we get back into the car, turn it inside out…or something. LOL

I’m sure may be the case in other cities…states Virginia Board Adopts Ban on Campaign Clothing . We dont’ want anyone to told to go back home and change shirts before they can vote on election day. PASS THIS INFO ON!!!! Find out what the LAW is regarding polling places and Campaign Clothing in your state.

One of my (many) worries about the upcoming election is that Democratic voters will be turned away in large numbers because they’re wearing Obama tee shirts. The issue hasn’t really come up before, because typically you don’t get a ton of people wearing tee shirt supporting presidential candidates, but this election is different. With Obama being the first African-American candidate running for president, the black community is enthusiastic about him to the point where a cottage industry has arisen in Obama tee shirts and other paraphernalia. Anecdotally, I see more people walking around in Obama-attire than in all previous elections combined. Obama tee shirts are all over DC.

The catch is that wearing such tee shirts is not allowed in the polling places, as it is considered the same as waving around a campaign sign. That seems fair, but the federal and local governments should make sure they get the word out about the rule, so that thousands of African-American voters aren’t turned away, disappointed, on election day. It would be horrible if the election turns on a strictly enforced interpretation of this rule. I hope that others will help spread the word: it may seem a good idea, but do not wear your Obama tee shirt on election day.

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DC: Smithfield Workers, the N-Word, and North Carolina relatives

Thousands of people in the Washington, DC area have ties to North Carolina, especially African Americans.  Many of our family members migrated to the region for better work opportunities and–at times–to escape abusive working conditions.   I was suprised to see this sign in the Gallery Place metro station today.  Well, maybe not suprised…I do come from an area of the midwest where meat packing plants thrive and I’ve heard about how conditions can be.  However, the allegations are just something you would never want to hear about taking place in 2008.  Beatings???  Being called the N-word by your manager???  Dag!  Supporters of the Justice@Smithfield campaign say that horrible conditions persist at the world’s largest hog processing plant, in Tar Heel, NC.

smithfield justice

“This summer, DC area families of Smithfield workers are beginning to reach back to their loved ones in Tar Heel, with a major advertising campaign spotlighting injuries and abuses at the plant. In late June, we will unveil a series of adverstisements in select metro stations and bus routes putting a human face on worker abuses at the plant, and urging DC area consumers to consider alternatives to Smithfield products in their local supermarkets. The campaign will also include radio advertisements and voice messages from movie star Danny Glover, which will air in Prince George’s County and the District of Columbia.” – www.smithfieldjustice.com – Click here to see the other 2 ads

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