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Falls Church, Virginia: an independent city asserting its identity through…stop lights?

After seventy years of steady and often astronomical growth—from 1940 to 2010—suburban Fairfax County Virginia finally slowed in the 2010s to a more modest pace.  It had no choice.  This county opposite the Potomac River from Washington DC is developed across about 75% of its 390-square-mile land area.  Even more impressive is that isn’t even

“STUDENT DRIVER” strikes again…or do we expect hired drivers to be amateurs?

As I fine-tune and finish up a much longer blog post, I wanted to fill this dry spell with some amusing content that serves as a follow-up to an unexpectedly popular blog post from about a year ago.  I noted last spring the strange, recent proliferation of bumper stickers (magnets in actuality) alerting passers-by of

Yes, we still have no bananas: worm’s-eye assessments of corona after two years.

We have now reached, almost to the day, the point when the majority of US states, taking the lead from a national disaster declaration, began issuing safety precautions in an attempt to prevent the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), better known as COVID-19, the number attributing the year in which epidemiologists

Analog Memes, Part II: a memorable trip down Christmas Card Lane.

As a successor to my post on a bumper sticker bedecked guardrail in Wilmington, I offer a second example of what I must at least partly attribute to meme culture, for which the World Wide Web exerted little to no influence.  This second example of memetic behavior that is anti-digital is probably a bit more

Arlington Temple United Methodist: the gas station church gets its own catechism.

The primary photo in this article features a landmark that is widely known to people in the greater Washington DC area, particularly those on the Virginia side of the river.  But it isn’t significant or important enough to have any clout nationally or even outside the region.  It’s a visual landmark in the sense that

How can we tell if a restaurant is an ascendent chain? It calls itself “local”.

It’s been over a decade since I wrote about the fish, chop, and steakhouse known as Kincaid’s, a chain with a location in Carmel, Indiana (an Indianapolis suburb) that, based on my fleeting observations, was doing everything it could to downplay its very chainy-ness.   And that was the point.  The interior of Kincaid’s included

White stripes: in this context, the drums may be the most essential part.

It’s amazing the world of difference that a few stripes of paint can make.  Thirty years ago, the notion that various municipal public works departments would overtly reserve portions of our roads as exclusive lanes for bicycles was essentially an extravagance—a weird provision relegated to a few choice roads in college towns, which were the

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