I got more mail than ever in reply to my questions in the last issue:
http://www.dcwatch.com/themail/1999/99-05-30.htm . I'll put everything else, including the
classifieds, ahead of the replies I got about the Jewish singles postings and the
spade-a-spade colloquialism. And I'll keep my part exactly this short.
Bricks and Mortar
Ed T. Barron, email@example.com
Mayor Williams has announced his intention of improving the schools for
the District's kids. Sounds like a laudable objective, but his emphasis seems, at least
initially, to be focused on making changes to the facilities of the school system.
Certainly, repairs are quite necessary in many of the schools, but to make cosmetic
changes and improvements will not make any dent in the real problems in the
school system or the educational processes. If the mayor really wants to help the kids in
the District then he should be focusing his attention and funding on correcting the real
problems in the DCPS: The need for more highly qualified and motivated teachers; the
elimination of control by the unions of the quality of the educational programs; replacing
a curriculum that has grown like Topsy with an integrated, back to basics, series of
courses that will provide students with real learning opportunities; promoting competition
with the public schools by supporting charter schools and vouchers (both privately and
publicly funded); providing more real choices to parents who are genuinely interested in
the education of their children; and replacing the overfed bureaucracy, that could not
administer a one car funeral, with empowered teams that have defined missions and goals
for reforming the educational processes in the DCPS.
The Mayor, himself, may be a part of the problem since his committed to
perpetuating the monopoly that the DCPS has on the education of the District residents'
kids. He needs to step outside the box that he is in to really reform the
educational processes in the schools. Making Taj Mahals out of the District
Schools won't make any real difference in the outcomes or the quality of the DCPS'
graduates. Brick and Mortar are not the underlying real problems with our school system.
DC Police occasionally drive their car onto the Dupont Circle grass and
sit there watching the action. Shouldn't they use motorcycles or bikes?
The new modern Laurial Plaza restaurant on 18th St. NW: A friend was
surprised to learn it wasn't a nice improvement in parking garage design.
Palmers Restaurant on the 17th Street Strip: Went out of business, thanks
mainly to the liquor license moratorium. Appears that, in contrast to the ANC vote in
support of renewing the moratorium, the majority of residents voted with the feet and went
to restaurants where they could have wine with their meal. Anyone interested in making a
go of it in that space would be well advised to interview DCCA and the ANC first. They
might have inside info on the market.
Update: The yellow ribbon announcing the dead limbs were going to be
trimmed from the Elm in front of my Woodley Park office quietly disappeared, and nothing
happened. Did the signage people forget to tell the cutting people? Well, at least they
didn't destroy the yard while cutting the limbs that would have been worse. (Note
to the person in Arizona who wonders why DC people don't seem worried about the Y2K
meltdown: we've learned to live with delusion, it's nicer than depression.)
Thought while looking at the monuments on the President's side of
the mall from the Cairo roof: My, what a nice garden the President's have made for
themselves. Monumental reminders of who set it up (Washington), who patched it up
(Lincoln), and what you better do if you want to be a two-termer (Jefferson: I know
of no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people
Water Those Infant Trees
Fred Davidson, FSDavidson@aol.com
Earlier in the year, Trees for the City, a non-profit group, planted new
trees throughout the District and in many local parks. In addition, the US Park Service
planted new trees in the area near and around Thompsons Boat House (Virginia Ave. and Rock
Creek Park), where the Whitehurst Freeway had been reconfigured and in Georgetown, near
Key Bridge. Unfortunately, we are in the midst of a drought and these infant trees
desperately need water. Many of these trees could die or have stunted growth because they
are not getting enough water.
The DC government should make arrangements with the US Park Service and
the US Forest Service to ensure that the trees get watered using federally owned water
trucks. In addition, DC residents and businesses should also step up to the plate and
adopt a tree in their neighborhood or in front of their home and/or business.
Watering these new trees will produce many rewards in the future.
Embassy Subsidy and Assistance Program (E-SAP)
Mark Richards at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire) occupies a nice building
on New Hampshire Avenue off Dupont. Thanks to the generosity of the feds, embassies are
exempted from DC property tax. I'm sure this DC contribution saves the US big
bucks worldwide. But, the DRC, with more complex problems on their hands, is obviously not
putting their DC tax savings into property maintenance. Does the federal government or
State Department have an embassy assistance program for struggling or destabilized
countries that need their Washington embassy patched up? (Or do they have to get
accidentally bombed by NATO first?) Seriously though, it is interesting that one can get
an idea of what is happening in a country by watching changes at their embassy.
I'm into my second year of receiving my auto registration information
about 60 days before expiration. This year I send my renewal close to the deadline (2
weeks before the DMV recommends giving them at least 15 business days to process
the renewal) and I still received my new stickers on time.
Community Policing Gets Thumbs Up
Paul Penniman, email@example.com
Coincident to our recent discussion, I, catching up on some reading, just
read a Sunday Times Week in Review piece from April 4 that applauds community
policing, citing examples in Fort Wayne and San Diego. Let me know if you would like a
copy. I can fax or post.
Still looking for a good outdoor poll to join in the DC area. Please send
your suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com . It's going to be too hot
not to be wet.
The Washington Hilton and what was the Sheraton Washington (and is now the
Marriott Wardman) used to have memberships to their pools. Not sure they still do, but try
The Cleveland Park Club has an outdoor pool which opens the second week of
May and closes the third weekend in September. Although it is small (for a club pool), it
is heated and within walking distance for most members. Anyone living within the greater
Cleveland Park area is eligible to become a member. (I believe there are still a few
memberships remaining for this year.) If you are interested in more information, feel free
to E-mail me. Please provide me with a phone number so I can call you with the particulars
of the boundaries for eligible members.
For reliable TV repair, you don't have to leave the city Murrell's
Electronics on Wisconsin Avenue in Glover Park does a great job fixing your TV set. As far
as I know it's still a family owned and operated business, and it deserves a look!
Jim Farley, Vice President, News & Programming, WTOP Radio, JTFnews@aol.com
Since Chief Ramsey is the topic of debate, I'd like to remind themail
readers and writers that the Chief will be on WTOP Radio taking calls live for an hour
Thursday morning at 10. You can hear WTOP at 1500 AM or 107.7 FM or listen on http://www.wtopnews.com.The number to phone in a
question is (202) 895 5060.
Two Jokes in themail
Elona Evans-McNeill, firstname.lastname@example.org
Three women were out golfing one day and one of them hit her ball into the
woods. She went into the woods to look for it and found a frog in a trap. The frog said to
her, If you release me from this trap, I will grant you three wishes. The
woman freed the frog and the frog said, Thank you, but I failed to mention that
there was a condition to your wishes that whatever you wish for, your husband will
get 10 times more or better! The woman said, That would be okay, and for
her first wish she wanted to be the most beautiful woman in the world. The frog warned
her, You do realize that this wish will also make your husband the most handsome man
in the world, an Adonis, that woman will flock to him. The woman replied, That
will be okay, because I will be the most beautiful woman and he will only have eyes for
me. So, poof she's the most beautiful woman in the world! For her second
wish, she wanted to be the richest woman in the world. The frog said, That will make
your husband the richest man in the world and he will be ten times richer than you.
The woman said, That will be okay, because what is mine is his, and what is his is
mine. So, poof she's the richest woman in the world! The frog then inquired
about her third wish and she answered, I'd like a mild heart attack
A man walked in to Joe's Barber Shop for his regular haircut. As he snips
away, Joe asks, What's up? The man proceeds to explain he's taking a vacation
to Rome. ROME?! Joe says, Why would you want to go there? It's a
crowded, dirty city full of Italians! You'd be crazy to go to Rome! So how ya getting
there? We're taking TWA, the man replies. TWA?! yells Joe.
They're a terrible airline. Their planes are old, their flight attendants are ugly
and they're always late! So where you staying in Rome? The man says, We'll be
at the downtown International Marriott. That DUMP?! says Joe.
That's the worst hotel in the city! The rooms are small, the service is surly and
slow and they're overpriced! So whatcha doing when you get there? The man says,
We're going to go see the Vatican and hope to see the Pope. HA! That's
rich! laughs Joe. You and a million other people trying to see him. He'll look
the size of an ant. Boy, good luck on THIS trip. You're going to need it!
A month later, the man comes in for his regular haircut. Joe says, Well, how did
that trip to Rome turn out? Betcha TWA gave you the worst flight of your life!
No, quite the opposite, explained the man. Not only were we on time in
one of their brand new planes, but it was full and they bumped us up to first class. The
food and wine were wonderful, and I had a beautiful 28-year-old flight attendant who
waited on me hand and foot! Hmmm, Joe says, Well, I bet the hotel
was just like I described. No, quite the opposite! They'd just finished a $25
million remodeling. It's the finest hotel in Rome now. They were overbooked, so they
apologized and gave us the Presidential suite for no extra charge! Well,
Joe mumbles, I KNOW you didn't get to see the Pope! Actually, we were
quite lucky. As we toured the Vatican, a Swiss guard tapped me on the shoulder and
explained the Pope likes to personally meet some of the visitors, and if I'd be so kind as
to step into this private room and wait, the Pope would personally greet me. Sure enough,
after 5 minutes the Pope walked through the door and shook my hand. I knelt down as he
spoke a few words to me. Impressed, Joe asks, Tell me, please! What'd he
say? Oh, not much really. Just 'Where'd you get that awful haircut?'
Looking to dress up your living room or den with reasonably priced,
original art work? Sculpture students at The Art League School of Alexandria, Virginia
will be selling their work on Friday, June 11 and Saturday, June 12 from 11 am to 5 pm.
The sale will take place at The Art League School's Madison annex located at 305 Madison
Street, near Fairfax Street. Realistic figurative works as well as abstract pieces will be
available. The artists include Susan Aschenbach, Marsha Brown, Fran Dilorenzo, Joan
Farrell, Karen Feld, Doug Hodges, and Kelly Merrill. For more information contact The Art
League School, 703.683.1780.
The Women's Information Network invites you to attend the 10th annual
Women Opening Doors for Women, Thursday, June 3, 1999, 5:30 pm to 7 pm, Woman's National
Democratic Club, 1526 New Hampshire Ave., NW. Keynote speaker: Ellen O. Tauscher (D-CA),
Member of Congress and Co-Chair of the DCCC. The champagne reception is immediately
followed by 24 simultaneous dinner parties in private homes these dinner parties
offer opportunities to learn from Women of Achievement in your career area, who want to
help succeed! A full list of dinner parties, along with speakers, is available at http://www.winonline.org/events/wodw/
Tickets: $45 WIN members; $60 non-members; $10 reception only! Don't miss this terrific
opportunity to hear from Congresswoman Tauscher, network with your peers and learn from
successful, established women who are leaders in their fields.
Tickets for this event will sell out! To reserve your ticket, please visit
the Web site at http://www.winonline.org/evets/wodw/
to fill out a registration form, and send your check or hand deliver to the WIN office at
Women's Information Network/WODW 10, 1800 R St., NW, Suite C-4, Washington, DC 20009,
CLASSIFIEDS FOR SALE
Computer Printer for Sale
Jason Orlando, email@example.com
Hewlett Packard Desk Jet 540 Printer for sale. Reliable, high quality
printing for $50 or best offer. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 234-1007.
95 Jeep Wrangler Rio Grande, dark green, tan soft top & interior, 46K,
5 Speed, a/c, am/fm cassette. Great condition -- fun in the summer with the top down,
great in the winter in the snow! Asking $11,500. Please E-mail or call 518-7643 and ask
10 month old futon (from Ellen's Futons in Alexandria) for sale. Queen
size, oak wood with rubberwood finish. With mattress, sofa cushions, and bolsters,
green-checked. I bought the whole thing for $800; I'm selling it for $400 because I can't
take it to Texas. Great deal! Comfy as bed or sofa. Call 202-797-6297 (work), 202-537-3328
(home), or E-mail.
Apartment Wanted for a Month
Corinne Rothblum, email@example.com
Three responsible, female Hungarian local government officials seeking to
rent a furnished, one bedroom apartment (for $900 or less) or house sitting opportunity
from mid June mid July. If you know of anyone going on vacation during this time
frame and might be interested in making some extra money, please contact Iren Sebestyen
asap! E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org ; daytime
phone (606) 258-3859; after 7 at (606) 323-2650.
CLASSIFIEDS NEWSPAPERS WANTED
Old Issues of Washington Informer Needed
Matthew Gilmore, email@example.com
The Washingtoniana Division of MLK Library is looking for early
issues (1964-1968) of the Washington Informer. We are talking to the Informer
itself but if anyone can lead us to any of the copies listed below we'd be truly grateful.
CLASSIFIEDS CITY PAPER PREVIEW
Dave Nuttycombe, firstname.lastname@example.org
From washingtoncitypaper.com's LOOSE LIPS column, appearing this Friday:
MAYOR HATERS: Mayor Anthony A. Williams and President Bill Clinton have little in common.
One is a career number-cruncher, the other a career politico. One enjoys canoeing in his
leisure time, the other golf and women. Put the two in a room for a while, though, and
they'll surely find a touchstone: They both have obsessive enemies.
Now, you don't have to subscribe to the American Spectator to know that Clinton-haters
don't really care about his feelings on family medical leave, reinventing government, or
even the V-chip. Well before Clinton had signed his first piece of legislation, the antis
were apoplectic about his draft record (cowardly), his wife (domineering), his accent
(dumb), his hugging (manipulative), his displays of emotion (fake), and even his daughter
(awkward). Seven years later, it's pretty clear that anti-Clintonism like
anti-FDRism and anti-Nixonism is more emotion than ideology. God damn, but they
hate that son-of-a-bitch.
Just five months into his tenure atop One Judiciary Square, Williams sees a similar
emotion splayed out in the dailies, in public appearances, and in the E-mail messages that
pile up in his computer. From budget missteps to the mishandling of racial flare-ups like
the David Howard affair, the mayor has certainly given his detractors plenty of material.
Read the entire Loose Lips column this Friday at: http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/lips/lips.html
From washingtoncitypaper.com's CITY LIGHTS page, here are a few early
warnings for upcoming events:
Sunday: Celebrate Mount Pleasant Festival, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Mount Pleasant Street
between Irving Street and Park Road NW. Free.
JUNE 9 AUG. 11: "Women of Film Noir," at the National Museum of Women in
the Arts, 1250 New York Ave. NW. $5.
More details and more critics' picks are available online at http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/pix/pix.html
Sometimes people try to hard to be Politically Correct. A spade is indeed
a short-handled digging tool, it is also one of the black suits in a standard set of
playing cards, not to be confused with a club, which is also a black, multi-lobed figure
with a short handle. If you call a spade a club, you are at least mistaken and at worst
cheating. Hence the advice to call a spade a spade.
And in the matter of announcements of the Jewish singles functions, why
not? I don't care for team sports, but I don't get upset about announcements or
discussions of the Redskins (now, there, maybe there is a problem with the name), I just
skip over and move on. As long as an announcement or discussion posting does not advocate
or practice oppression or repression of a given group, I should think it was good to run
it. Giving free speech to one group does not mean you are harming all others as they have
an opportunity to make their events known as well.
My personal take would be that people tend to want to marry people of the
same religion as they are. You don't marry people you don't date, so screening potential
dates on religion just makes sense. There is a BIG difference between saying, I
don't want to live next door to a Christian, and I don't want to marry a
Christian. Whilst both demonstrate discrimination [in the classic sense of the
word], only the former demonstrates prejudice.
Enough is Enough
Leslie Lets Get Real Ruskin, Shanti@III.Org.Tw
I don't believe that the Jewish Singles classified ads only
limit their invitations or admissions to only Jewish folks. I do not see how this kind of
posting can be seen as patently discriminatory since the admission is not
limited. Don't go if you don't want to. About two years back or so dc.story used to post
classifieds for the Washington International Church's monthly Coffee House and I believe
that they would occasionally appear back to back with the Jewish Singles postings. Their
postings did not limit their attendance to only current or perspective Washington
International Church members. In fact, I remember thinking that the event sounded
interesting so I went to check it out. (BTW, I am Jewish [not affiliated with the Jewish
Singles group] and had a nice time.)
Posts for Particular Groups
Joan Eisenstodt, email@example.com
The issue of the Jewish singles event postings is one I'd
never considered. Just like I'm not a public relations professional (current issue
posting), I am Jewish but not single so I skip the information. I imagine that the Jewish
singles would not turn away someone who was not Jewish just like the public
relations professionals (posting in current themail issue) would invite those interested
who weren't yet part of the profession. The side of me that questions all things that
smack of discrimination pondered the issue but didn't come up w/ anything that I found
offensive. Curious though to see what others think.
Oi Vey, Please Don't Get Me Started on the Subject
Clare Feinson, firstname.lastname@example.org
I want to thank Gary from the bottom of my heart for refuting the supposed
sinister meaning of the phrase calling a spade a spade. I hope this defuses
the tendency among us to show more self-righteousness than common sense in spotting slurs
under every bed. Another listserv in the city is taken over periodically by bouts of this
madness and it drives me to distraction. However, his lukewarm response to the Unalert
Reader who objects to advertising events for Jewish singles was less than reassuring.
Under the interpretation of the Unalert Reader, no ads for any particularly defined market
segment should be run. Should we avoid also ads for Democratic Party events because they
exclude Republicans? How about ads for Gay/Lesbian/Bi events?
In a sense, every advertisement for every event is discriminatory because
it is aimed only at those most interested in the event. However, the fact that the event
is being advertised means that the group producing the event is speaking to a wider group
in search of new members who may be interested i.e., they are seeking to include
more individuals, not exclude anyone. My understanding of the ads is that a segment of
readers of themail may be interested in an event for Jewish singles, and it is to those
persons that the ads are aimed. Notice I did not say anything about the interested parties
being Jewish. To the best of my knowledge, no one is ever turned away from these events,
and I've never seen them checking pedigrees (or circumcisions!) at the door. Besides,
what's wrong with advertising specific church events anyway, or any events for that
matter, as long as they are open to the public? How will you choose which groups are
worthy of ads in themail and which are not? And doesn't the real patent
discrimination lie in arbitrarily refusing to allow certain groups to advertise? Methinks
the Unalert Reader has a problem with religion in general and maybe Jews in
particular and certainly with the Constitution, which is supposed to protect us
from this sort of malarkey.
No Discrimination in themail
Michelle Treistman, Cleveland Park, email@example.com
Is posting an event for Jewish singles in themail patently
discriminatory? Well, is posting a notice for a social event for accountants? For a
wine tasting event? I'll never be an accountant and, try and try as I have, I'm beginning
to suspect I'll never develop a taste for wine. I can't afford that 1998 Mustang that was
posted for sale in the June 1st edition of themail or the apartment to share
that I posted for my cousin either, but these postings are not discriminatory. The answer
to the question is a resounding NO. I believe that posting for any religion, race, or
creed in a public, on-line discussion group cannot be discriminatory except in two
possible situations: one, if a posting is offensive to a particular group, or groups
women, men, Jews, Christians, accountants, people who can't afford Mustangs; two,
if the editor of the publication posts one group's events but not another's. And, in Mr.
Imhoff's favor, I find it impossible to imagine that the reason we haven't seen events for
Muslim singles or Protestant singles is because he has weeded them out. Most importantly,
however, the posting in question is not discriminatory because the group has not
discriminated by saying that it is only for Jews. I'm not interested in singles' events,
Jewish or otherwise, but I am interested in knowing about what is going on in DC
hat's off to themail! the capital city of a country founded on the premise of life,
liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all.
Is the discrimination in a Jewish singles event legitimate? I think so. I
think the chief purpose of singles events is to find a marriage partner, and I think it's
legitimate to try to find a co-religionist to marry so as to carry forward into the
marriage an important element in your life. It's also legitimate to try to keep your
dating scene uncomplicated, to the same purpose. It is as legitimate for a general
newspaper to facilitate that as it is to publish announcements of religious services.
Events Listings That Include Religion
Dianne Rhodes, Dupont Circle, firstname.lastname@example.org
I don't think it is discriminatory to mention religion in describing an
event. The events for Jewish Singles don't indicate that you must be Jewish to attend. The
Jewish Community Center is called Jewish, but anyone can join. I belong to the JCC and I'm
a Unitarian. My church has advertised inclusive events in themail in the past.
After living in D.C. for a number of years I thought I was beyond being
amazed. But I'm appalled by the the characterization of Jewish singles announcements as
patently discriminatory. Let's look at where we live. We live in a city that
has a Latino Affairs Office, a city whose mayor has an Asian & Pacific Islanders
Affairs Office, a city that was host to a million (black) man march, a city where the
congressional black (-only) caucus holds forth, etc. In some cases these exclusionary
institutions and events are funded by the tax money we all pay. Unlike these public
manifestations, a private Jewish singles group is simply taking advantage of its freedom
to assemble, and its freedom to tell people that it is assembling. I'm not just ranting
and raving about this I'm deadly serious. The history of anti-Semitism is long,
pervasive, and horrific. The fact that your correspondent selected Jews of all the special
interest groups in D.C. to criticize is extremely ugly.
Panties in a Bunch
Cathy Vidito, email@example.com
Whoever said she felt uncomfortable about events for Jewish singles needs
to get a thicker skin. I see nothing wrong with the ad, it's just an event for people who
have something in common their religious background. If any other group, such as
Pentacostal Christians, divorced parents, or beekeepers, wanted to post a notice for a
singles night, they should feel free to do so too. It's gotten to the point in society
that any mention of religion gets people's panties in a bunch. Rational, intelligent
humans should be able to discern when something aimed at a particular group is
discriminatory and when it's just a gathering. (By the way, I am neither Jewish nor
Christian.) Thanks for listening.
The Silliest Thing
Kurt Vorndran, Kvorn@nteu.org
Now the objection to the Jewish Singles ad is about the
silliest thing I have every heard. Does every ad need to be of universal interest? Would
an ad for a butcher shop be discriminatory to vegans? A gay mixer discriminatory? Posting
an ad for a particular subset of the readership is in no way inappropriate. And if the
Ladies' Rosary Guild wants to advertise their bus trip to the outlet malls, include them
Jeez Louise, how is a posting about a Jewish singles event
discriminatory? Isn't it like any notification letting people with a particular interest
know how to find like-minded individuals? e.g. book groups, or Jefferson's descendants, or
Italians, or knitters, or foot fetishists, or a school's alumni so those people can
hook up together. Are schools discriminating when they invite only their graduates to
class reunions? And notice that published personal ads tell whether the searcher is, for
example, S[ingle], J[ewish], F[emale] or S[ingle], B[lack], M[ale], whether college
educated or whatever, and then say ISO of, for example, D[ivorced] M[ale], btw 30-40 etc.
(The ads can even say what they are not looking for: e.g., no jewelry or pierced!) Those
offended by public notices of social events for Jewish singles must be the kind who see
discrimination in every act of social intercourse, but I guess in our Grundy-ish society
there are always people looking to be offended!!
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