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May 5, 1999

Cities Within a City

Dear Cityzans:

The debate over statehood is tapering off in this issue, so I'll add one thought. I'll even attribute it to the person whom I believe originated it. Dino Drudi, a long-time member of the Federation of Citizens Associations, once told me that he would certainly be for statehood for the District of Columbia — after we had established cities within the prospective state. He argued that the thing that most distinguished us from states was not our geographic or population size, but the fact that we didn't have independent subordinate jurisdictions. He argued that we should spin off Georgetown and Brookland and Capitol Hill and other neighborhoods as independent cities, each with its own mayor and legislature and laws and regulations (although possibly contracting cooperatively for some services), and that then we would be structurally ready to become a state. The District of Columbia used to encompass incorporated cities and an unincorporated county. Is anyone ready to revert?

One unrelated point. I don't argue with contributors. You know that. This is your forum, not mine. I don't contradict you, usually. And I haven't taken a position on the tax cut debate. But Anne Drissel — Anne — let me get this straight. You can argue against tax cuts, and I know that I just waste and fritter away my money on frivolous things like food, clothes, and shelter. But are you telling me that the government of the District of Columbia spends my money more wisely and efficiently than I do, and on higher and better goals than I have? Are we talking about the same District of Columbia government here?

Gary Imhoff


No Tax Cuts; More Fix-ups!
Anne Drissel, Mt. Pleasant,

Our esteemed City Council members need to notice we did NOT vote for any of their members for Mayor in the last election. We elected the one person who did NOT talk about tax cuts. Yes, Anthony Williams proposed limited changes in the tax laws to help small businesses. But he made it clear that the real task is to clean up and fix up the city and put it on sound financial and managerial footing. That's the tax policy we chose when we elected Mayor Williams. The list of vitally needed city improvements are well known after decades of neglect. There's no end to the list to the backlog of unfunded city needs that should be met before we talk about cutting taxes. Just a few added examples: trim and replace lost trees throughout the city. Rehab our libraries; update the inventory of books; replace over-used books that are worn to shreds. Clean and paint city buildings; restore or replace shabby furnishings. Clean the sewer openings. Properly repair street cuts. Clean and repair alleys. Replace all of our street light and lamp post bases! Pay back debts to contractors. Restore humane levels of health and human services. Rebuild our schools. Rebuild our neighborhoods. Retire the debt — continue to improve our bond ratings and save huge interest payments.

Forget returning the money to us so we can fritter it away on overpriced, overbuilt sport shoes, cell phones and pagers in every pocket, more junk food. Put it where we can all use it. . . . in our shared community infrastructure. In case they don't get the point, I repeat: City Council Members, we did NOT vote for tax cuts this past election. If you respect the fact that you are supposed to represent us, then you should not be proposing major tax cuts!


The Great DC Council Tax Cut Caper — Bullseye or Cheap Shot?
Len Sullivan,

There is no question but that DC taxes are higher than those of our neighbors and most other Americans. Why? NARPAC says because DC: a) has many more tax consumers per taxpayer; b) uses many more government employees in virtually every city function relative to the population they serve; c) carries far too high a per capita debt; d) still performs too many non-municipal tasks; and e) raises too little revenue from some of the city's wealthiest businesses. Moreover, DC already gets more funding from the feds alone (i.e. other American taxpayers) than most other cities get from their states and the feds put together. The proposed landmark income tax cuts could be a right-on-target salvo by the City Council IF and ONLY IF the Council AND the Congress not only authorize, but mandate the mayor to use all available powers to alleviate the five imbalances identified above within the same time frame — and without tricky bookkeeping or subsequent legislative grandstanding and second-guessing. Furthermore, the Council should recognize that proximity to the seat of the federal government is an asset for which people — and businesses -- are prepared to pay. Complete tax parity with the outlying suburbs is not necessary to “level  the playing field.”


In Response to Your Question
Jennifer Dhore,

“So does anybody want to pay less taxes?” I have recently sent off the following to our councilmembers and the Mayor. (My answer is an emphatic NO!)

With a total gross income of a little less than $60,000 in 1998 and a family of six, I would love to have a tax cut. I have a junior at Wilson who will be in college in two years and a 3 year old entering pre-K and 6 year old entering first grade in the fall. Can we afford a tax cut? NO! We live in the Cardozo-Shaw neighborhood, a vibrant and diverse neighborhood and a neighborhood we love except for one thing — the schools. I cannot afford to let my youngest children attend the public schools as I did with my eldest. A recent “Report Card” on area schools indicated the following proficiency levels for our neighborhood schools: [chart omitted, but showing very low scores in reading and math].

Consequently, we feel we have no alternative but to send our youngest children to a private school. What does that cost us? The Pre-K program will run over $6,000 this year and entrance into the first grade is over $13,000. We are looking at close to $20,000 in private school tuition with an annual gross income of under $60,000 this year alone. Next year we are faced with over $25,000 and the following year college tuition will be added onto that. Tax cut — thanks, but no thanks. Take that money and invest in our children's future . . . give us a break and the opportunity to send our children to good public schools. (And, give us the opportunity to know our children and be involved with them and their friends — an opportunity we may not now have since an extra $20,000 means second jobs for us both.)


Tax Cut Road Show
Mike Hill,

The thing to remember about tax cuts is, if they pass, they make excellent publicity for politicians. Jim Gilmore made great political hay out of a tax cut (car tax) that most Virginians still haven't seen. Although none of our council members is running for reelection currently, they still are lobbying for greater political power as a group; stuff like this is an easy, dumb way to appear “statesmanlike.”

A tax cut, especially a tax cut that will mostly affect the wealthiest citizens, is a stupid idea. Do we really need more millionaires living on Foxhall Road, or an influx of middle income families? These are the people that most everyone, regardless of political affiliation, agrees stabilize communities. They do this in terms of the tax base, and they add a stable element to the social life of neighborhoods. Right now, we seem to have a real estate boom going on throughout the city, but it is only 18 - 24 months old. We should wait and see how much benefit the city reaps from the current upturn before we decide it isn't enough.


Voting Rights Solution
Oscar Abeyta,

People have gotten so caught up in the whole land issue concerning what a “District” is and what a “State” is and why six of them are called “Commonwealths” that most of the arguments posted lately surrounding the voting rights lawsuits have neglected the people of the District. After all, it doesn't matter the size of the “Federal District” because the land can't vote, only those of us who live here can. Theoretically, I mean. Keeping that in mind, I have come up with an alternate and (if I do say so myself) far more equitable and superior solution to the problem that won't cause a constitutional crisis:

Since every member of the House and Senate has a voice in how the District is governed, every resident of the District should have a vote in their elections. Every registered voter in the city would get to choose one House race and two Senate races anywhere in the country to vote in (which is the number of congressional votes we'd get if we had representation). Can you imagine how differently congressmen would treat us knowing 300,000 potential swing votes live here? Maybe Tom Davis and Jim Moran would think a little bit before opening their yaps and disparaging the District and its residents. Maybe we would have been rid of Mr. Faircloth had District voters pooled their votes and swung an election against him. Or think of the favors we'd get from congressmen in tight races who need some extra votes. Isn't it about time we got some of them pork barreling for us? All that needs to happen to bring this about is to get the residency requirements for national elections waived for District residents. There's already a precedent in the works: Tom Davis is working to get the residency requirements waived to allow District high school graduates to attend out-of-state universities at in-state rates. It could happen....


Defining Statehood Down
George S. LaRoche,

Mr. Matthes is partially correct, partially incorrect, and generally quite contentious. First, there's really only one “requirement” to be a State in the United States of America: admission by Act of Congress. Other than a few specified limitations on what places Congress can admit as a State, the whole matter is one of political definitions and the indispensable key is POLITICS. Nothing in the Twenty Citizens lawsuit (Adams v. Clinton) contravenes this principle. We do not ask, nor do we seek, “statehood” via judicial fiat, nor do we ask the Court to “order” Congress to admit the District as a State. We do not seek to “stir the pot,” but to end violations of constitutionally protected rights.

Mr. Matthes is simply wrong, however, in saying that the Constitution “prevents DC from becoming a State.” His point hangs on his assumption that the Constitution REQUIRES Congress to exercise plenary power over the ENTIRE present District. No language in the Constitution requires this and his recent discussion ignores points previously made illustrating the problems with the position. To maintain this position, based on his reading of the Constitution, Mr. Matthes must also assert that retrocession of Alexandria County to Virginia violated the Constitution, and that our “failure” to be in a constant state of war violates the Constitution. But please count to ten before you fire back, Mr. Matthes, because you and I agree that the real issues here are political. Don't let your apparent ire at LAWYERS draw you into unnecessary fights.


Congress and the District of Columbia: A Source for Facts and Research
Randy Wells,

Congress debated whether laws from the states of Maryland and Virginia should continue in force over the respective parts of the District, after the formal establishment of Federal jurisdiction in 1801. This decision has bearing on the continued exercise of voting rights by District residents, within the respective states. Is it possible that Virginia and Maryland continued to register District voters (then only “freeholders,” mainly white male land owners) after ceding the territory to the Federal government?

I invite interested themail readers to conduct research using a new Internet resource, A Century of Lawmaking: US Congressional Documents and Debates, 1774-1873. This project, sponsored by the Law Library of Congress and the National Digital Library Program of the Library of Congress, is full of materials relating to the early governance of the District. (I work for the Library on this project.):

“Great force was attached to that part of the Constitution which gave Congress exclusive legislation over the Territory [of the District of Columbia]. But that same clause of the Constitution gave the same power over forts, magazines, arsenals, &c. Yet this power had never been assumed by Congress.” — Congressman Nicholas, December 31, 1800.


Wishing Won’t Make It So
Ed T. Barron,

Despite Herculean efforts on the part of Mayor Williams to improve services to the citizens of D.C., things are moving at a glacier like pace. Similarly, the Superintendent of Schools, Arlene Ackerman has just learned that her Special Education organizational element has not implemented a single recommendation of the Department of Education over an entire year. What these two folks should know by now is that wishing won't make it so. Neither will setting targets at the top, cajoling, shouting, hitting people on the head with clipboards, etc. etc. The problem lies with an entrenched, bloated bureaucracy. This bureaucracy, which is growing as you read this, as evidenced by things happening at the Police Department, can actually be heard growing. If you go out in the dark and dead of night and close your eyes you can hear this bureaucracy growing. If the Mayor and the Superintendent of Schools really want to improve things in their respective organizations, if they really want dramatic improvements in the processes of the District, then they have to take radical and dramatic steps to change the major processes and the way they are implemented. That means tearing down the bloated bureaucracy and replacing it with empowered, autonomous teams comprised of stake holders who are doing the work. By the time any streamlining (totally inadequate measure) makes it through that low pass filtering bureaucracy we will all be on social security (if it is still around). I'm sure the folks at the bottom in this top heavy chain of command have a six page procedure, and three policies telling them exactly how to pick their noses. Until the bloated bureaucracy is obliterated and evolved into a flat set of functional teams we will never reduce the cost of the D.C. Government and be able to really introduce tax relief. And we will never see the major improvements in efficiency and effectiveness of services to the folks who live in D.C. Before the Mayor was elected I met with him at a small “Meet and Greet” in an apartment just off Dupont Circle. I asked Tony Williams if he was ready and able to evolve the D.C. organization into functional teams and to do away with the bureaucracy. His response was that he first had to improve the services to the people in D.C. who were so poorly served. Well, that hasn't worked. It's timely to put “Plan B” into effect. Try one Department and process at a time in the Mayor's organization and in the DCPS. If not now, when?? Wishing won't make it so.


DPW Web Site Nets Results
David Wong,

Thank you to whoever posted the news about the new web site of the DC Department of Public Works. I posted a complaint about a faded No Parking sign on my street on April 21. A reply from a Ms. Linda Grant was received on April 23. Ms Grant is the PR Officer. She said my request for service has been forwarded to the Rapid Response Team. Sure enough, on April 27, a van bearing the Rapid Response Team sign rolled up and two men went to work replacing the sign. Nathaniel and Harvey were courteous and did not even accept my offer of a cold drink. They even trimmed the branches that were obstructing the sign. Now this is a City that works!


Getting Better, Really, Honest!
Ralston Cox, Dupont Circle,

I think it's a sign that things are getting better in DC thanks to the following: (1) my DC tax refund arrived two weeks after filing my tax return — no word yet from the Feds; (2) a metal plate was in place on 17th Street NW near U Street, for many, many, many months (maybe even a year). I sent DPW an E-mail (from their web site); two days later, I got an E-mail response saying my complaint had been forwarded to the right department; one week later, the road was patched and the metal plate removed. Hooray! I'm so pleased, I'm gonna send a “thank you” E-mail message to DPW today.

Now, can someone explain to me why one escalator at the southern entrance to Metro at the Dupont Circle station is still out of order? I remember groaning when a sign went up saying it would be out of order until 10/31/98 — at the time I thought that was an incredibly long time. Well, it's now 6 months past that deadline, and it's still out of order. Sigh.


Ralph Blessing,

I confess. In my 5/2 posting (on charter schools) I erroneously used the contraction “it's” where I should have used the possessive. I'll attribute it to sloppiness, too little caffeine, premature senility, whatever. The difference between my posting and the charter school recruitment letter to which I was referring is that I'm not asking for taxpayers' money to educate our kids. Like anything we pay others to do for us, we expect our educators to be experts in their field. That was the intended point of my posting. Sorry if it ruffled some feathers.


Street Cuts
Barbara Zartman,

Those wonderful long cuts in our streets (in many cases our newly rebuilt streets) are the gift of the telecommunications revolution. Can't you already see the improved telephone, cable, and internet services? The competing companies are wiring high volume locations first (witness Massachusetts Avenue). There was an extensive piece in the Post about three weeks ago, complete with diagrams of what lies under our streets. It's still available online. Of course, the repairs will all be done to perfection. Can't wait until winter weather tests them.


Construction on DC Streets
Frank Pruss,

Various communication industry “wannabes” have taken out permits to lay fiber optic cables throughout prime areas of the District. These are intended to support competition with communication services currently provided by Bell Atlantic and District Cablevision. When they're done “cherry picking” the business districts, they'll be after your back yard.


Reply to L. Burford on the Citywide Street Excavation
Rob Fleming,

All those trenches are multiple companies laying conduit for fiber optic communications lines. The good news is that, once the conduit is in, they can pull more fibers. In addition, fiber optic communications is still fairly new, and growing. Every time you turn around, some bright boffin has figured out how to get more signals through a fiber, so the conduits should be able to cope with increasing demand, once they are in. In the meantime, pothole city, and I'm not sure the city ever gets the revenue it deserves for renting the sub street space or mandates timely and effective street repair, either by the contractor or by DPW on
a reimbursable basis.


Dry Clean Depot
Valerie Kenyon Gaffney,

Has anyone had any experience — good or bad — with Dry Clean Depot? I need to have my winter clothing cleaned before putting in storage for the summer and would prefer it didn't bankrupt me to do so. Suggestions of other dry cleaners in the District who offer a “volume discount?”

[Washington Checkbook, which is very useful and usually reliable, rated dry cleaners last year, and the cheaper places came out just as well or better than the more expensive ones — Dorothy recalls that Dry Clean Depot was check rated for both price and quality. — Gary Imhoff]


T’ai Chi and its Relatives
Connie Ridgway,

Regarding the query about a “good beginner's t'ai chi class in Northwest:” I teach a qi gong (pronounced chee gung) class at Guy Mason Rec Center, near the corner of Wisconsin and Calvert Streets NW in Glover Park, on Saturday mornings at 11:30 am. Summer series begins in June. Qi gong is a Chinese healing art/exercise that is relaxing and energizing, engaging the body and the mind (tai chi is actually a form of qi gong). The style I teach is Soaring Crane — it's a bit easier to learn than the standard t'ai chi form. If you're interested call Guy Mason Rec Center (282-2180). Registration starts May 8.



The Foundry Players Present Schoolhouse Rock Live!
Chad Eric Hickerson,

The Foundry Players, Washington's longest running community theater, are proud to present the wildly entertaining, toe tapping, sing along salute to 1970's Saturday morning television —Schoolhouse Rock Live! The show's story features a nervous teacher, preparing for the first day of school, who manages to draw the Schoolhouse Rock characters out of the television set. The newly freed characters respond by presenting the “greatest hits” of the beloved animated musical that has run on ABC for over 25 years, including such classics as: Conjunction Junction, I'm Just A Bill, Elbow Room, Three is a Magic Number and Interplanet Janet.

The Players are located at the corner of 16th and P Streets, NW, three blocks east of the Dupont South exit of the Dupont Circle Metro. Performances of Schoolhouse Rock Live! run each weekend from May 7 - May 23. Friday and Saturday evenings at 8 pm and Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2:30 pm. Tickets are $12/person with discounts available for seniors, children and groups of 10 or more. For more information please see our web site at or call 202-332-3454.


Prepare for Star Wars Prequel
Lois Kirkpatrick,

Andrew Aurbach is concerned about hordes of Star Wars fans camping out in his neighborhood for three nights, beginning May 16. Three things: 1. These plans were probably made before the announcement that folks could buy their tickets by phone or online. 2. If you were an entrepreneur, you could see myriad money-making opportunities presented by this“"problem,” such as serving campers food, drinks, garbage bags, e-mail hookups, bathroom privileges, etc. for a reasonable fee, or allowing campers the use of your lawn in return for rapt attention to your multi-level marketing pitch. 3. For the non-obsessed among us, a colleague and I are presenting a “Prepare for the Prequel” Star Wars briefing on Saturday, May 29 from 2:00-3:30 in Virginia. The briefing will cover clips from the first three movies and an overview of themes and characters, so that you can view the new movie with a fuller appreciation. Admission is free but pre-registration is required; send an E-mail to LKIRKP@AOL.COM   if interested.


Free Hypnosis Workshop II
Wayson P. Lee,

Free Hypnosis workshop on Wednesday, May 26, 7:00 p.m. The Chevy Chase Library, Connecticut Ave. & McKinley St., 1/4 mile from Friendship Heights Metro. Take E-2 or E-4 to Connecticut Avenue & McKinley Streets. Call 202/727-1141 or 202/362-2068.

Hi (Bonjour)! It's Wayson Lee again, Certified Hypnotherapist, BA (Psychology)! A new hypnosis workshop will be held for relaxation and “Past Life” Regression, “former lives” exploration. At the last workshop, a volunteer asked about “Past Life” regression. So this time, in addition to relaxation through hypnosis, Wayson would accompany volunteers to “visualize past lives” by retrospective techniques. All are welcome and look forward to seeing you.


Tasting Society International May, June, & July 1999 Calendar of Events
Charlie Adler,

1) May 13th, California Wines: Hot New Releases with guest appearance by Ann Berta, Wine Columnist for Washingtonian Magazine, 7-9 p.m., Radisson Barcelo Hotel, 2121 P St., NW, $40. Join Ann Berta, as our guest speaker for this tasting. According to Ann, the new release of California wines is truly extraordinary. We will showcase wines from Napa, Sonoma and the Central Coast with a special emphasis on delectable Cabernet Sauvignons. 2) May 19th, Embassy of Switzerland Wine Tasting and Dinner with Michael Franz of the Washington Post, 7-9 p.m., 2900 Cathedral Ave., NW, $45, tax and tip inclusive. Join Michael Franz, wine columnist for the Washington Post, as we taste exceptional Swiss wines and enjoy an international gourmet buffet including Thai Money Bags, Porcini Mushroom Fondue, Pork Shaomai, Sliced Garlic Flank Steak and more! We'll keep the speaking to a minimum so you can sample these wine treasures from this mountainous country. 3) May 25th, Australian Wines of the Outback: New Releases Wine Tasting, 7-9 p.m., Radisson Barcelo Hotel, $40. Australia has been receiving well deserved attention for its wine making prowess. Aussie wines are a perfect match for summer foods cooked on the “Barbie,” lighter salads and vegetarian fare. We will taste over 8 top rated wines! 4) June 15th, Wine Basics 101, 7-9 p.m., Radisson Barcelo Hotel, $35. Our most popular tasting! Michael Franz will cover the basics: how to match wine and food, how to purchase and order wine, and what to look for in different grape varieties. You don't need to be an expert to enjoy great wine! 5) June 23rd, Last Tango at the Embassy of Argentina: Wine, Dinner and Romance! 7-10 p.m., Embassy of Argentina, 1600 New Hampshire Ave., NW, $55 in advance, tax and tip inclusive. Argentina is a country that sizzles! Join the Ambassador, His Excellency Diego Ramiro Guelar, as we experience the carnal pleasures of this South American country. The Ambassador claims that not only is their beef an aphrodisiac, but so is their wine! We'll include a full buffet dinner with this wine tasting including imported Argentinean beef, empanadas and other delicacies (Vegetarians are welcome!) There will be a wide selection of this country's fine wines served in an informal format. Last, but not least, a Tango demonstration and lesson will be included with a live band, so bring your dancing shoes. 6) June 30th, French Wines for Summer with Michael Franz, 7-9 p.m., Radisson Barcelo Hotel, $40. France produces such a wide variety of fantastic wines that it's very difficult for the consumer to choose quality producers. Join Michael Franz as he helps take the mystery out of French wines. We'll primarily taste wines that pair well with the lighter foods of summer. 7) July 22nd, Wine 102: Tasting Like A Pro, Thursday, 7-9 p.m., Radisson Barcelo Hotel, $35. You understand the wine basics, but you want to impress your friends, business associates, or other acquaintances with your wine knowledge (this is great for that next job interview!). Michael Franz will show you in under 2 hours how you can taste like the pros and impress anyone with your new found knowledge. 8) July 28th, Mixology 101: How to Make Premium Cocktails, 7-9 p.m., Radisson Barcelo Hotel, $35. Drink Better! Tired of the same old Rum and Coke? Well, our bartender will demonstrate how to make each new specialty cocktail using the finest premium spirits available, and you get to taste each of them! We'll taste variations on old standards such as the martini and margarita, and a variety of shooters. Light hors d’oeuvres included. Reservations: RSVP at (202)333-5588 or E-mail: or the reservation form at our web page at



Donating Used Textbooks and Other Books
Peggy Robin,

Now that the school year is drawing to a close, many students and graduates are wondering what to do with their old textbooks. Sometimes used bookstores won't take them (or give you so little for them, that you'd be better off taking the tax write-off for donation). If you're looking for a worthy cause, here's a great one: The Book Project, run by the World Bank, distributes used textbooks to students in need at schools in many countries around the world. Novels and other non-academic books are also appreciated and are delivered to hospitals and libraries. Just box up your books and bring them to the loading dock of the World Bank, located on G Street, NW, between 17th and 18th Streets, any Monday or Wednesday morning. If you'd like more information, call Beth Shepherd at 202-473-8960.


Ladder Loan for Studio School
Jennifer Dhore,

This Saturday, May 8th, the Studio School will be hosting over 300 volunteers who will be painting the interior of the school. They are in desperate need of 12 foot (or any ladder although 12 foot would be the ideal size) ladders. If anyone can loan them a ladder for the day (Franklin absolutely promises safe return) please contact Franklin at the School. They would be most appreciative of your assistance. The telephone number is 387-5880.



House Sitting/Cheap Sublet Wanted, July-Sept.
Stephanie Faul,

Impecunious Australian composer seeks housing for self, wife, and smallish child from July 20 to September 31. House-sitting ideal, but inexpensive rent is possible. Any leads will be appreciated. Write with offers, suggestions, or possibilities.



William B. Menczer, William.Menczer@FTA.DOT.GOV

Schwinn Sidewinder all terrain bicycle, men's 18 speed, 19" frame, excellent condition, $150 or best offer. Fuji S12S, racing bicycle, men's 12 speed, 23" frame, very good condition, $125 or best offer. Call 202-332-5663 evenings or e-mail.


Nancy Davidson,

Teak desk, 30 x 60, $200; Jennifer queen sized sofa bed with upgraded mattress, $250; chrome arc shaped floor lamp, $35. Call 202-337-6482.


Dave Nuttycombe,

From's LOOSE LIPS column, appearing this Friday:
Quoth The Revenooer, Nevermore: As David Catania and Jack Evans' hotly debated tax-cut plan passed a D.C. Council vote this week, the authors took pains to portray their bill as a painless piece of public policy that the long-suffering District had earned. “We're collecting more than we're spending,” chanted Catania at an April 26 council hearing on the plan.
“The plan doesn't require cuts,” Evans told LL.
To arrive at their rosy conclusion, however, Catania and Evans relied on their own numbers and projections — as opposed to the numbers and projections of the mayor's Office of Tax and Revenue. And as opposed to the numbers and projections of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. The consensus emerging from those corners of D.C. not smitten with fantasies of turning the District into Grand Cayman on the Potomac is that the cuts will cost us. The only question is how much, and whether it's worth it.
Read the entire Loose Lips column this Friday at:

From's CITY LIGHTS page, here are a few early warnings for upcoming events:
Saturday, May 8: Brookland Day, starting at 9:30 a.m. at Catholic University's Crough Center, in Koubek Auditorium, 620 Michigan Ave. NE. $25.
To January 2, 2000: Stay Cool! Air Conditioning America, Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. and Sunday, noon - 4 p.m. to Sunday, Jan. 2, 2000, at the National Building Museum, 401 F St. NW. Free.
More details and more critics' picks are available online at


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