That Missing Week
Dear Calendar Watchers:
Here's that missing week again, that week between Christmas and New Years. It's not
really the new year, when everything starts over again, but it doesn't feel like the old
year either. The kids aren't in school, the offices are half empty and the people left at
work aren't doing much of it. A big holiday is coming up in a few days, but there aren't
many preparations to make, as there were for Thanksgiving and Christmas. All we have to do
is make sure that the champagne is chilled and the New Year's dish of herring, or baked
beans, or black-eyed peas, or caviar, or whatever our particular tradition is, is ready.
It doesn't take a week.
So I've made an early New Year's resolution to find a way to make this missing week
unusually, particularly productive and useful, to find a special mission for it. I'm
considering daily naps. You might consider writing to themail.
My question was a sincere one. I have lived in Alexandria for many years and recently
moved back to DC. I'm not up to speed with the goings-on in city politics.
Contributing to Make Washington a Better Place
Ed T. Barron, firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm sort of a newcomer to D.C. (only 13 years) so I'll never be a native
Washingtonian. But, since I plan to live here the rest on my life, I am determined
to help make this a better place for all of those who live here. Most of my work now is
volunteer work. I have done some of that for John Ray and Bill Rice, in their campaigns,
and have helped in the remodeling of both Turtle Park and Hardy Park playgrounds. My wife,
now retired from teaching, has volunteered as the writing lab person at Wilson High School
to help teach youngsters how to write.
I know that many of my postings are critical of the District, but my criticisms are
well meaning and, generally, accompanied by how to make things better. Sometimes those
ideas make some sense and, less frequently, they are responded to by those downtown. I
have met with a few of the Council persons on occasion and found a few empty suits. Those
wearing those suits might recognize themselves. I have also met some very talented and
hard working Council persons (namely Kathy Patterson and Sharon Ambrose). Kathy, one time,
even made a house call here to respond to one of my suggestions. Though we are in
agreement on some of the major issues only most of the time, I'm very thankful to have
Kathy Patterson representing Ward 3. She is a real plus on the Council for all of D.C.
Although the jury is still out, Catania (an alternate board member) may be the only one
with enough moxie to stand up to the commissars of WMATA. (Stay tuned to see what the
outcome of a Takoma DC community effort to preserve open space and defeat a
proposed high density development deal -- at the Takoma Metro Station)
Character of Washington, Part 2
And there's the other Washington, the Nation's Capital, the Marble Zone, the emerging
Planetary Capital. That's the place that people come to see, most likely to marvel that
this is the city that bids fair to rival the Forbidden City or even Roma
when the children of a far future read their ancient histories of civilization and of
empire. Me? I'm utterly inconsequential in the grand scheme of things, but I'm pleased as
punch to be here, if only as a mere observer and sometimes gadfly, cheerfully trying to
document things I just can't quite understand, not being a college man you know.
Sometimes I get in my old car and drive around town, mostly because there's just
nothing like seeing the sun rise over the Capital Building, or the Cathedral coated in a
blowing autumn mist, or the Potomac on a summer day or the congregations coming and going
to the real hearts of Washington. Or I might watch the rush-hour throngs as they march
from the stations, 99-percent of them mysterious clones wearing off-the-shelf from Hechts,
all of the women and the relatively few men all moving through their trajectories from
their mysterious origins to their mysterious ends. Money, power, fame, obscurity, and to
me it's somehow the more obscure that are to me more real. The high and mighty can't talk
classified to me, but I swear by the powers that the bums have their stories. So do the
ladies that type up the briefs and so do the men that file 'em. Real people, real lives,
none of that famous stuff you see on the news.... I'll never know the power and the glory,
and so I like to talk to the old men, fishing in the River.
Sometimes I go to Adams-Morgan, or Dupont, or U Street, or the new
14th Street, or you might find me dressed in black at Catacomb on Saturday night. Or
I could hang with the homeless hustlers, or walk into a yuppie bar and listen and learn,
or repeat what I've heard to others and sometimes people are amazed, but more-often not:
Washington is such a city that "Shorty Bighead down to the corner" is more of a
political and media sophisticate than many degreed people out in the heartland. Words,
this town is so much about words: but in the right words one will find knowledge, and
knowledge may teach you truth, and while truth cannot free me from this place, it may
better help me understand it so that I may spread the word to others: this place is gonna
change, I can feel it. And it can! It will. Let's make it happen! Join Us. Shikata ga
Joan Eisenstodt, email@example.com
Thanks for the tribute to Flo Kennedy. I had the privilege of meeting her in the early
'70s and never forgot her. What an amazing and strong role model she was! Her actions
spoke at least as loud as her words. She will be missed since there seems to be no
replacement for her brand of civil rights activism -- and we coulda used her for all that
has to happen next.
Joan Eisenstodt, firstname.lastname@example.org
Christopher Koppel wrote about one of my favorite subjects . . . lack of recycling pick
up. We find, on the Hill, that it is catch-as-catch-can. Some weeks it's all picked up,
some weeks they leave some at some houses but not others. Try calling 645-8245 and ask for
Bill, or call your Councilmember's office. That seemed to work for me.
CLASSIFIEDS -- EVENTS AND CLASSES
New Years Eve Fiesta 2001 Party
Michael Karlan, email@example.com
The D.C. Society of Young Professionals invites you to its New Year's Eve Fiesta 2001
Party. The turnout for our New Year's Eve Fiesta 2001 Party is about 2/3 singles and 1/3
couples. We rented out the entire Tequila Grill for the exclusive use of the D.C. Society
of Young Professionals, so that we could host a party where everyone present feels
comfortable meeting new people, and mixing and mingling in a private party atmosphere. The
D.C. Society of Young Professionals exists to create a sense of community for young
professionals in the D.C. area. Our New Year's Eve Fiesta 2001 Party is the new year's
party to attend if you want to attend a new year's party with that sense of community. For
more information, or to join our weekly E-mail list of events, E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, visit http://www.dcyoungpro.com, or call 686-6085.
Ethical Society Events
Discover Your Myers-Briggs Type
Donald Spears, LifeWorks at Washington Ethical Society, WES@EthicalSociety.org
The MBTI workshop will help you understand four aspects of your personality in which
youve made choices about how to approach life. Understanding these preferences will
allow you to appreciate that some situations and relationships are naturally more
appealing to you. In addition, youll come to know how others are different from you
so that you can appreciate their strengths and see how they complement your approach to
life. Date: Saturday, January 6, 9:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m., $35. Sponsored by LifeWorks Adult
Education at the Washington Ethical Society, 7750 16th Street, NW, 20012. To register,
call LifeWorks at 882-6650 x21 or E-mail WES@EthicalSociety.org.
Daring to Dream
Don Montagna, WES Senior Leader, WES@EthicalSociety.org
Free talk by Don Montagna. A new year is an uncharted sea of possibilities. You cannot
control the wind or the current of circumstances, but you can sail toward a chosen
destination if you set your rudder. Thanks to your natural "reality-producing
function of the mind," assuming that next year will be somewhat like the last, we can
chart that familiar course. Instead, we can spend the cold, dark winter months of relative
hibernation daring to dream about what would make our lives a more joyous and purposeful
adventure. At this first Platform of each New Year, we pause to reflect on this theme
question: As the story of my life unfolds in this next year, where would my hearts
desire lead me? Sunday, January 7, 11:00 a.m., Washington Ethical Society.
Mary Herman, LifeWorks at Washington Ethical Society, WES@EthicalSociety.org
What might make the rest of your life meaningful and enjoyable? How can you live with
more joy and authenticity? By paying attention to the sources of vitality available in
your life, consider your sense of purpose, your unique constellation of gifts, and how to
express those energies in your community and in the world. Plant your dreams, experience
your passion, and live from your highest self.
Dates: Tuesdays, January 9-30, 7:30-9:30 p.m.; 4 sessions $80. Sponsored by
LifeWorks Adult Education at the Washington Ethical Society. To register call LifeWorks at
882-6650 x21 or E-mail WES@EthicalSociety.org.
CLASSIFIEDS -- FOR SALE
1986 Mazda 626 Turbo
Jerry Lorentz, email@example.com
Runs well, looks good, moon roof, stick shift, 230,000 miles, original owner. $695.00.
CLASSIFIEDS -- RECOMMENDATIONS
The following organizations, individuals, and stores accept donated computers or buy
used machines. Credit Sacha Cohen, a freelance writer in DC who wrote the article: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A37762-2000Dec21.html.
I'm also reproducing the list of organizations here, since it's hard to find them on the
Washington Post Web site. Call or E-mail first to see if they can take your particular
Action Computing Solutions, 703-502-7986, 6041 Centreville Crest Lane., Centreville.
This computer retail shop also accepts donations and will take pretty much
anything, according to the owner.
Computer Reclamation Inc., 301-495-0280, 10759 Tucker St., Beltsville. Accepts Pentium 100
and higher PCs and Power Macs only; requests a $25 donation per computer.
Computer Renaissance, 703-823-5455, 265 S. Van Dorn St., Alexandria. Buys only Pentium 133
and higher PCs.
Computers 4 Students, 703-237-0222, P.O. Box 7084, Arlington. Accepts Pentium PCs and
monitors larger than 15 inches as well as properly licensed software, all in working
Computers for Teachers/Capital, PC User Group, 301-762-9372. Accepts 486 or higher PCs in
working condition but prefers Pentiums; accepts all peripherals as well. Doesn't take
Davis Memorial Goodwill Industries, 202-636-4225, Ext. 1245, 2200 South Dakota Ave. NE.
Accepts all donations.
Lazarus Foundation, 410-740-0735, 10378 Eclipse Way, Columbia. Accepts only Pentium 75 or
Practical Computer Inc., 703-321-3003, 5407A Port Royal Road., Springfield. Sells
computers on consignment; accepts only Pentiums or higher.
Phil Shapiro, firstname.lastname@example.org, 3905 N. Pershing
Drive, No. 3, Arlington. Shapiro, an instructional-technology coordinator for two
Arlington elementary schools, refurbishes used computers 486 or higher PCs and Macs
of any vintage and channels them to the Hoffman-Boston Elementary School in
Subtractions, 301-924-0605, 7202 Mink Hollow Rd., Highland, MD. Monitors cost $8 to 30 to
drop off, depending on size, to cover handling costs. Non-monitor parts can be dropped off
at 10630 Riggs Hill Rd., Unit V, Jessup.
WasteNot Recycling, 703-787-0200, 13852 Park Center Rd., Herndon. Accepts most computers,
but call to check first
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