Archive for the ‘Arlington’ Category

Going Back To School: Obama To Speak At Wakefield High Today

President Barack Obama gestures as he addresses union workers and their families at the AFL-CIO Labor Day picnic at Coney Island in Cincinnati, Monday, Sept. 7, 2009. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

President Barack Obama at the AFL-CIO Labor Day picnic at Coney Island in Cincinnati, Monday (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Fresh from his Labor Day speech with the AFL-CIO (which I think is a very fitting event for Labor Day), President Obama will be in Arlington, Virginia today to talk to the children at Wakefield High School. After talking with the kids he’ll broadcast a nation-wide speech from the school around lunch-time. While the Principal at Wakefield High is excited to have The President in the school (“The building looks great and the auditorium has been transformed to suit a Presidential speech”), the kids might be a little disappointed to hear the lunch menu will be cold lunch in brown bags due to the speech. Also lunch is going to have to wait til after the speech- so kids eat a good breakfast before you come to school (remember breakfast is the most important meal of the day!) Oh well I’d put up with PB&J if it meant being able to see The President.

According to the released prepared remarks, Obama plans to say things like, “Hello everyone – how’s everybody doing today?” and, “I hope you’ll all wash your hands a lot, and stay home from school when you don’t feel well, so we can keep people from getting the flu this fall and winter.” He’s also expected to say more inspirational things like, “Where you are right now doesn’t have to determine where you’ll end up. No one’s written your destiny for you. Here in America, you write your own destiny. You make your own future.”

But seriously guys, Obama’s right- wash your hands.

Overall it looks like the remarks are pretty devoid of the rhetoric that would make some concerned parents pull kids from school. I side with the NY Daily News, Barack Obama is our President and he wants to inspire and impart wisdom to our children- like any good President should.

One last note, if you live or work in Arlington- be aware that the speech is going to cause some road closures today.

UPDATE: Looks like the newspapers weren’t the only ones with something to say about keeping kids from school so they can’t hear Obama, Jordan Peele (formally of MadTV) made a funny Obama reaction to all the talk on the issue.

But for those that want to see the real video you can find it below:


Taco Bell Truck In Rosslyn Today

Photo courtesy New York Times

Photo courtesy New York Times

Thank goodness I live in Clarendon and work in Court House. I don’t think I would be in good shape if I was any closer to the truck.

What truck you may say? Why the Taco Bell truck that’s giving away free food today in Rosslyn. Just make sure you check out it’s Twitter feed to get the latest info on where it is and line up to get a free taco- no base stealing required!

The Taco Bell truck appears to be a myth to some, reality to residents of Huntington Beach, CA. So if you are up to it, get down to Rosslyn and get on the hunt for the truck, there aren’t that many places it could hide- unless it’s pulling a shady “deep throat” like exchange.

UPDATE: It looks like the truck will be in Foggy Bottom until 3:30- however don’t go there expecting Chicken, they are fresh out.

The Java Shack A Welcome Change Of Pace From The Coffee Grind

Courtesy Java Shack

Courtesy Java Shack

“I need coffee,” I said when I stumbled into my co-worker’s cubicle last week. I don’t know if it’s the stress of my job or my terrible choices of staying up late at night, but I find myself needing a caffeine boost more often than not recently.

I asked my co-worker if there was anything near our Court House office besides Starbucks that would be good for coffee, I like the ‘bucks but I wanted a change of pace (and give me wallet a breather.) She suggested Java Shack, right next to Mr. Tire where I get my oil changed. I’ve passed by the place driving down Wilson Blvd, but it’s a little set into the side street so I’ve never felt the urge to go there for coffee.

However after the reminder of it’s existence and an endorsement, I decided to walk on down.

The atmosphere really puts the “shack” in Java Shack, the hodgepodge furniture and overall lived-in feel makes it a place that belongs on the West Coast more than the East Coast. There were plenty of tables on the front patio and a few more inside, perfect for those looking for that Third Place.

I could tell that social consciousness was a big part of the store as well, from solar panels (for charging what?) leaning against the front window to the biodegradable cups and fair trade coffee. I don’t demand so much from my Batista but it was cool to know.

The prices were also right and I grabbed an iced coffee and walked out a happy man.

Java Shack will definitely get a return visit from me for mobile blogging and look hipster cool, I defiantely recommend it if you are looking for a homey feel that you just won’t get at any big franchise.

Java Shack
2507 N Franklin Rd
Arlington, VA 22201-3939
(703) 527-9556

DC Video: Fairfax Responds To Arlington Rap

Everybody by now knows about The Arlington Rap (except my friend Rebecca who told me tonight at Happy Hour she never saw it.)

Well it looks like there maybe a Virginia rap battle brewing, local comedian Chris Culosi released today his own Fairfax response to the Arlington Rap.

Culosi raps that, Arlington isn’t the only place that, “has douchebags going to Starbucks to use the free Wi-Fi.” Culosi should note that Starbucks usually charges for their Wi-Fi, in Arlington we go to Panera and Cosi for the free Wi-Fi.

The production values aren’t as crisp as Remy’s original rap, Culosi manages to drop some beats at some more notable places in Fairfax like the Fair Oaks Mall and Fairfax Corner. However I think trying to tie Tyson’s Corner into it’s jurisdiction is a stretch.

I did enjoy the swipe he takes on Fairfax County’s stringent (or lack there of) adherence to the legal drinking age, and the fact Fairfax does have GMU while we have to toil with Marymount (does anybody go there?)

Culosi ends the piece not by visiting all the Starbucks, but by visiting all the Korean restaurants (bulgogi anyone?)

While the video has some funny moments, is it good enough to truly spark a Virginia Rap Battle of Narnia like proportions? I’ll you guys decide:


Update: Bayou Bakery Not To Open In Clarendon, Liberty Tavern To Open New Coffee Shop

Photo courtesy of Flickr user geekstinkbreth

Photo courtesy of Flickr user geekstinkbreath

In an earlier post I wrote about the future of the empty space where Murky Coffee once stood. It looks like David Gaus will have to find another place for his idea- a southern haunt called Bayou Bakery.

According to The Going Out Gurus, Liberty Tavern (now the owners of the ex-Murky Coffee space) and Gaus have parted ways on the joint venture, with Gaus retaining his concept and idea. Gaus is currently working to find another space which to make his Bayou dream come true.

Meanwhile there will be something in place of Murky come this September. The owners are working with Liberty Tavern chef Liam LaCivita to instead open up a coffee shop (how original) where Murky once stood. Liberty Tavern co-owner Stephen Fedorchak hopes that the shop will also include sandwiches, salads, ice cream, and “a few surprises” on the menu for the yet un-named shop.

Arlington Drafthouse Bankrupt

photos-marquee1If Obama bails anybody else out this year, I hope it’s the Arlington Drafthouse.

The Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse has been a frequent destination of mine for cheap flicks and drinks. In fact I recently went there earlier this month to take in a screening of Adventureland. The place is a little out of the way in Arlington, located on Columbia Pike, a good distance from the Metro, but it always attracts crowds looking to enjoy the second-run screenings, stand-up comedy, or Redskins games during football season.

That being said, it was sad to learn that the Arlington Draft House has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. According to the Washington Business Journal, “Arlington Cinema Inc. listed assets of less than $100,000 and debt between $1 million and $10 million.” The report cites that the biggest chunk of that change is $5 million owed to landlord of the Montgomery Drafthouse, the failed expansion that was closed seven months ago.

While the lawyers representing the Drafthouse say that operations will continue under reorganization, I hope that the Arlington Drafthouse remains open for years to come. Like drive-in movies, the Drafthouse represents a unique movie-going experience that provides a needed alternative to the commercial monsters of AMC and Regal.

With everyone so down in the dumps over the economy we need entertainment more than ever, and that’s the value The Arlington Drafthouse provides to Arlington and the community.

Why I Don’t Want You To Go To Jay’s Saloon

Photo courtesy of Flickr user lifeinthedistrict

Photo courtesy of Flickr user lifeinthedistrict

When I first moved into my current place in Clarendon my roommates and I noticed a quaint little house around the corner next to the car dealership.

It was actually a bar called Jay’s Saloon and Grille.

At first the appearance was somewhat run down and somewhere between divey and dicey. We joked about going there and drinking with all the middle aged townies that probably frequent the place. It wasn’t until I organized a roommate happy hour at Jay’s that I found out what I was missing. I’ve already written that this place maybe our McLaren’s.

The Washington Post opens their review with the exact same thoughts I had when I spent that summer night at Jay’s:

I love Jay’s Saloon & Grille so much that I don’t want to tell you about it. I don’t want you to discover it. I don’t want it to be crowded and popular. I really love this bar. I would not write in the first person otherwise.

Now I know exactly what Shayla was thinking. As much as I want to tell everyone what a great place this is, I don’t want too many people to know. What gives Jay’s its charm is the fact that in location and environment, it is truly my neighborhood bar. I love how it always has the right amount of people, so it’s sociable but not too crowded. It’s the perfect place to relax after a tough day at work or a place to start before you head out into Clarendon or DC.

After that initial happy hour, we kept coming back again and again. My roommates were already recognized by the wait staff a week or two since discovery.

The cover of the menu looks like it’s circa 1985: the pages are typewritten with handwritten notes and former items blacked out with marker. But with the retro menu comes the retro prices- which looks like they haven’t been changed since the 90’s. The fare is standard- not bad but not great either, however the cheese fries are a favorite with my house. Jay’s Happy Hour is where the place truly shines $2 domestic bottles and deals on Budweiser and Coors Light drafts: $1.50 for a frosty mug of beer or $7 for a full pitcher. House wines — from the “Wine List” — are $2.95 per glass. It’s one of the best deals around town short of heading over to Recessions.

We typically enjoy drinks in the covered patio section in front of the bar. Astroturf covers the space that is full of plastic lawn furniture, Christmas lights, and if you look carefully- hung oil paintings that gives the place a more southern feel.

Inside there’s a pool table that’s been covered and unused every time I’ve been and a ramp takes you up to a bar and table area where you can find the townies I stereotyped earlier. However the crowd is actually a jovial mix of young professionals, and other people that make up streets around Jay’s- it truly is a neighborhood bar where the mood is low-key and relaxed.

On the weekends the place will get a bit more crowded that usual but I hope that during the week I’ll still be able to walk 100 ft out of my house and into the patio without having to hunt for a table.

Jay’s Saloon has so far been Arlington’s best kept secret.

Jay’s Saloon and Grille
3114 N. 10th St.
Arlington, VA 22201

DC Video: Clarendon Apple Store Shooting Video Released

The 4th of July holiday started on a disturbing note Friday when I heard from fellow Metblogs author Amy that there was a shooting at the Apple Store down the street from me. Luckily the victim will be ok but Arlington County Police needs your help.

Arlington County released video of the incident and is looking for anyone that recognizes the suspect.

Anyone who has information about this shooting or the identity of the suspect is asked to call the Arlington County Police Department Tip Line at 703 228-4242. Witnesses can also call Arlington County Crime Solvers at 866-411-TIPS (8477).



Q&A With Arlington Rap Creator Remy

untitled1Even though it only has over 600,00 hits (great numbers, but it’s no Evolution of Dance) the video, Arlington: The Rap, has made an enormous splash locally for creator Remy Munasifi. The video is only the latest in a series of successful rap videos and has caught the attention of just about every media outlet I can think of. All the blogs have raved about it. His profile has grown to the point he was a hot date commodity and he has earned himself a page on Wikipedia. I wish I had a page on Wikipedia.

So I had the honor to ask him a few questions and learn more about the man behind the video.

Patrick:I laughed, I cried, I begged for more when I ran into Arlington: The Rap. I went over to your site ( and I wanted to learn more about you. After reading your bio I was wondering, do you consider yourself a comedian? A musician? A filmmaker?

Remy: I’m not sure. I’d probably go with, “entertainer.” That’s mainly what I’m trying to accomplish–to entertain. Usually through laughter though, sure.

Patrick: So do you have a day job or is your art truly what you work on day in and out?

Remy: I’m a full-time YouTuber. I’m a content partner on the site and have been for a year and a half now, which has been great. YouTube and Google have been very generous and supportive of their partners and do a great job creating and maintaining a great environment for filmmakers who want a home for their video content.

Patrick: One of the reasons Arlington: The Rap is so successful is the local appeal, after I saw it I sent it to all my Arlington/DC friends and I got it sent to me by other locals as well. You’ve been in all the local papers and TV stations, but have you seen any interest coming from outside the immediate local area?

Remy: Somehow some folks outside the area do seem to enjoy it. My chief concern throughout the process of making that video was that it had no widespread appeal–that it would be too geographically specific for folks to understand outside a one-mile radius of my neighborhood. I was surprised so many people enjoyed it locally though, I certainly didn’t expect that.

Patrick: Do you find that you’ve now created a big inside joke for all of us to share? Now when I tell people I live I Clarendon they reply with questions on my collection of brown flip-flops.

Remy: Somebody was telling me they had noticed a slight decline in the brown flip-flop levels around town. I haven’t seen the statistics. I suspect we’ll have to wait for the 2010 census.

Patrick: I’ve watched a number of your other videos and I have to tell you they are all great. Has Arlington: The Rap helped you get your YouTube channel more viewers? In other words, have other people started checking your other stuff now that you broke through with one?

Remy: Thank you for saying so, I appreciate that. I can’t imagine the video hurt anything. It’s the 12th most popular video on the channel, so there are some other videos that folks seem to like more, at least by that measurement.

Patrick: Also I noticed you do a lot of raps, is there anything that makes that your genre of choice? I think it’s funny that you have a lot of Raps yet your favorite iPod artists are mostly country artists.

Remy: After I made my first rap video, “Two Percent Milk,” I got a lot of positive feedback from people who said they really enjoyed it. I had enjoyed making the video, so I decided to make another rap and, two years later, it continues I suppose! Still having fun and I hope folks are still enjoying those videos.

Patrick: So I know you are busy with tons of video projects, what should we expect next from Remy?

Remy: I always have a list of ideas in my head, but it’s always tough to pick the next one to go with. I’ll probably decide in the next week and take it from there. I just hope folks will like it!

DC Video: Arlington: The Rap

I have a truth to tell: I really don’t live in Washington DC.

I actually live in Arlington, VA; but lots of DC locals call it their home, and now I’m proud of it thanks to this wonderful video that I found Thursday night (thanks to FamousDC.)

So I hope you learn a little bit about the ‘hood I come from.


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