Keeping it real since 1975.

A Vision for a New Columbia - part 5: entertainment

I've been giving this a bunch of thought and Columbia 2.0 makes me worry a bit. It the Sun article concerning the group, there was a member of the group that books entertainment acts. I really hope there isn't another venue for crappy cover bands that makes a barely tolerable night out on the town. Nottingham's and Sonoma's covers that market rather well, thank you. Then there's the folk music, which is cool, but that won't drag in the youth market. Then there's the high art events, which many young people would go to, but it's not exactly the sort of thing that people would go to on a consistent basis. As I stated in my first post. There's easily 500+ people who go to either Baltimore of DC to see acts doing original music. That's a demographic work pursuing. And that's just the punk and indy rock scenes. Let's not forget the various jam bands in the area. Put that all together, and you have the economics of a vibrant music scene right here in Columbia.

Read More

A Vision for a New Columbia - part 2: the public realm

As I stated in the last post, Town Center needs to the jewel in the crown of all development. It's what makes a statement of what Columbia is supposed to be. and I'm not talking about it from a design prospect, but from a community standpoint. This brings in the elephant in the room: the mall. The mall takes up so much spaceĀ  and is arranged in such a way that makes all further development difficult if not impossible. In order to get from one side of TC to another, you need to either go around the mall (a long walk no matter what) or go through the mall (and face the ring of moving cars, meander through the parking area, walk a lengthy stretch of the mall to get to a door on the other side, come out then face the parking lot and the ring of moving cars again). With all of that said, it's evident to me that the mall as it stands today needs to go.
Read More

A Vision for a New Columbia - part 1

It seems that I'm having a difficult time getting away from the topic of Columbia, MD. No matter what, it seems what I most often talk about with others. I grew up here. After living in other places for periods of time, I always seem to make it back. Admittedly a few times was because I couldn't make it out on my own, but there's a weird thing about this town that is somewhat indescribable.

Read More

Dan Hess: Dear friend and an example of DIY Punk. 1976 - 2007

Last night, I was at the Pietasters show at the 9:30 club and I heard that my old friend, and sometime confidant, Dan Hess passed away from Hodgkin's Disease on May 14. One of the proprietors of Phantasmagoria and he suggested that I post my memories of Dan to DC Ska. It seems however, I feel like posting my memories and musings here and I'll let Michelle link to here. I'm still trying to put together specific incidents and photos (if I have any off hand), but at the very least, I can post my initial thoughts here for everyone to see.

Read More

All a twitter.

I'm now signed up for Twitter. In case you're not aware of what it is, it's a social networking site with one simple purpose: to let your friends know where you're at. Physically that is. That's been one of those things that has always frustrated me in the past, I've wanted to let people know where I'm at, or I suddenly have some free time and I'm wondering where my friends are at. This pretty much solves that issue. For instance, I'm here at the Starbucks on Dobbin Rd. chilling out, reading a bit and listening to some podcasts. Well, all I need to do is to either log in to and update my message, or I can send in a text message from my phone and the message will be updated that way. I don't know how well it will work out, but I think I'll give it a shot to see how well it works. if you want to be on my network, just give me a shout.

Read More

Thanks a lot AARP!

I must admit, I've been in a prety foul mood this week. To anyone who has felt my wrath as a result, I do apologize. Imagine this morning when I checked a piece of mail I got yesterday. It was from the AARP! "Hmmm...." I thought to myself, "I wonder what this is about?" Well, let's take a look at what it says.

Or records show that you haven't yet registered for the benifits of AARP membership, even though your're fully eligible.

Read More