The year in review, 2018

So what happened to November? The lede for eleven first posts of the past months:

  • 4 January: O, I miss you sweetie.
  • 3 February: A lush, ostinato-less “Every Breath You Take,” in the lobby of Navy Federal Credit Union, Reston branch.
  • 4 March: Danai Gurira’s engaging drama takes a new angle on the ever-intriguing clash of cultures.
  • 7 April: Elizabeth G. Knight, writing in the Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club, 11:11/12 (November-December 1884), p. 134.
  • 14 May: The role of sound design in professional live theater, a podcast episode produced by James Introcaso.
  • 4 June: Between festivals, I stopped by Thuya Garden and Asticou Azalea Garden in Northeast Harbor—two lovely spots.
  • 7 July: My final report for the ducks and mergs team this season.
  • 9 August: So this pavement milling machine has been hanging out near the building entrance.
  • 3 September: Is there another playwright who shows such skill at introducing characters as Sarah Ruhl?
  • 6 October: I got a leg up on understanding the mystery yellow flower that I’ve seen blooming in the marsh.
  • 2 December: 75 dancers, 300 solos of work by Merce Cunningham on his 100th birthday, livestreamed.

The year in review:

The year in review, 2017

Scanty posting for much of the year. Nevertheless, my annual slice through the first-of-the-month posts:

  • 5 January: WATCH assignments are ready!
  • 2 February: Augmented by a stack of books from Leta’s library.
  • 2 March: Woolly continues its admirable run of productions in which people of faith—specifically, Christian faith—are front and center, with their questions and fears driving the story.
  • 2 April: Richard Bolles has passed away.
  • 2 May: From my last report to the nest box team:
  • 3 June: A lovely “bloom” of one of our common yellow myxomycetes in the Ridge Heights meadow.
  • 2 July: O Gray Catbird, who have been tapping at your reflection in my window glass, maybe if I post your picture on the internet you’ll be embarrassed and cut it out.
  • 5 August: TIL that IAD was originally planned to be built in what is now Burke.
  • 1 September: In the course of researching the life of Laura Lyon White (Mrs. Lovell White), I came across an interesting turn of events concerning LLW’s estate.
  • 2 October: Kevin Dodge, Shirley Gay, and Steve Kite led a walk though Ice Mountain Preserve.
  • 5 November: Another piece by one of our journalists was cited in one of the textbooks that I’m recording for Learning Ally:
  • 3 December: Hilary Howard reports on the precarious state of independent acting conservatories in New York.

The year in review:

The year in review, 2016

The last couple months have been eventful, albeit not blogworthy. Nevertheless, here’s the first sentence (more or less) of the first post of each month from this blog:

  • 2 January: Let the driving begin!
  • 7 February: Stephanie Strom visits a big soybean/corn agricultural complex (spanning two states) and finds a old school farm practice that improves soil quality, reduces sediment runoff, and improves yields: cover crops.
  • 5 March: Emily Graslie talks to Robb Telfer about his work to conserve Illinois’s only endemic flowering plant, Kankakee Mallow (Iliamna remota), to Langham Island in the Kankakee River.
  • 3 April: A generous notice from Susan Brall for DCMetroTheaterArts.
  • 1 May: Oh, dear Fox, yes: “Stop Saying ‘I Feel Like.’”
  • 5 June: One more report from the nest box monitoring team for the season.
  • 1 July: An oldie but a goodie, saved from linkrot: Thomas the NJ Transit train.
  • 6 August: Another visit to our Boston office this past week.
  • 2 September: We bounced back from the dismal 2015.
  • 2 October: “Why Some Wars Get More Attention Than Others,” by Amanda Taub.
  • 5 November: Guillermo Calderón’s Kiss is an ambitious, but unsuccessful attempt to bring the horrors of violence in today’s Syria into the American living room.
  • 1 December: Pat Padua reports that Artomatic is coming back to Crystal City for 2017.

The year in review:

Happy decade

10 years, 2100+ posts. Here’s a random slice: I picked every 80th post from my dashboard.

  • 2 July 2006: We drove out to the Eastern Shore yesterday to say goodbye to Marlie…
  • 5 August 2006: If you’ve ever wondered why all the underground stations of Metro look so much alike, and why you can’t just glance out the window and find where you are from the color of the posts (as in Chicago, for instance), you have the Commission of Fine Arts to thank, in part.
  • 10 November 2006: Daniel Mosquin photographs Mammillaria compressa at the Botanical Gardens of The Huntington.
  • 15 March 2007: Another very complimentary review of the show: this one is from Michael Toscano.
  • 19 June 2007: Thomas the NJ Transit train.
  • 8 October 2007: My entry for Lifehacker’s Show Us What’s in Your Pockets gallery.
  • 21 February 2008: Your vegetable fun fact of the day: tasty Brussels sprouts (Brassica oleracea var. gemmifera) are cultivars of the same species that give us broccoli, cauliflower, collard greens, kohlrabi, kale, and cabbage.
  • 6 June 2008: The last time I was in a museum bookstore, I noticed a DVD series called Art:21.
  • 28 September 2008: As we parked at the Kensington Armory this evening to see a show—it was early dusk, about 7:15—we saw a sizable flock of Chimney Swifts (Chaetura pelagica) swirling about, ready to come into to roost for the evening.
  • 16 January 2009: Potomac Stages and Alyse Kraus report the launch of a new shuttle service along the H Street performing arts corridor.
  • 27 June 2009: Artomatic 2009 once again takes place in an unbuilt-out office building, this time a new structure atop the enlarged Navy Yard Metro station.
  • 9 November 2009: Forum Theatre, recently relocated to Round House Theater’s Silver Spring black box, delivers a commendable production of Tony Kushner’s huge, seven-hour two-part play.
  • 11 March 2010: John Brunner anticipates comment-driven media.
  • 3 July 2010: A recent Earthtalk column summarizes research by Aiello et al. that calls into question the practice of adding triclosan as an antibacterial ingredient to consumer products.
  • 13 November 2010: “MAX TARASOV. Arthur, no one come!”
  • 20 March 2011: Via Via Negativa, a new botanical-entomological citizen science project pops up from U. C. Davis and the U. of Toronto: monitoring of pollinators of Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica and C. caroliniana).
  • 27 July 2011: On my way up and down J Street (so you know I wasn’t in downtown D.C.) to visit Mom I passed this charming brick and terra cotta edifice, which turns out to be the Sacramento Turn Verein, now a German language and culture society.
  • 5 December 2011: I know that it’s nothing fancy, but this neon sign that marks the entrance to a Doggett’s parking garage on 11th Street, N.W., with its helpful/hopeful HERE and jaunty arrow, just makes me happy.
  • 14 April 2012: Mark Z. Danielewski looks for love on OkCupid.
  • 17 September 2012: Mitt Romney and Barack Obama respond to the 14-point questionnaire from ScienceDebate.org and Scientific American.
  • 28 February 2013: Martin Austermuhle updates us on the District’s gradual replacement of its street name signs with new ones that are set in mixed case.
  • 8 September 2013: Alexis Hauk profiles Robb Hunter, armorer and fight choreographer.
  • 21 February 2014: Amanda Rodewald, director of the Conservation Science program at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, gives a 10-minute preso on bird-friendly coffee, in a video introduced by Gustave Axelson.
  • 4 August 2014: Allan Savory gives a rubbish science TED talk and gets 2M page views.
  • 26 December 2014: I visited several new spots, without making a big deal of it this year.
  • 13 July 2015: A Festival that gives the design departments an opportunity to shine.
  • 27 December 2015: Birds, habitat, coffee agriculture—and 10 ways of looking at Northern Virginia.

The year in review, 2015

The first sentence (more or less) of the first post of each month from this blog:

  • 4 January: Definitely an oldie but a goodie: in a 1990 paper for Journal of Political Economy, Hugh Rockoff put together a marvelous reading of L. Frank Baum’s Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900) as an allegory of the pros and cons of bimetallism as a progressive-era monetary policy (caveat lector: there are some scannos in this copy of the paper).
  • 1 February: It was quite a pleasure to see a full evening’s program from Company E, after having seen this young modern-dance organization at the VelocityDC Dance Festival showcase.
  • 1 March: The team faced down the sleety weather this morning to start the rounds of checking nest boxes.
  • 1 April: Bob Neidt takes a quick photo tour of retro motel properties in northern Virginia.
  • 3 May: A strong production of this audience favorite, certainly a standard against which other productions can be judged.
  • 2 June: Ed Yong watches John Hutchinson and his team dissect a Komodo Dragon (Varanus komodoensis), our 3-meter long monitor lizard.
  • 5 July: Dave Taft offers a splendid 24-hours sampler of the wildlife to be found within New York City, be it animal, vegetable, or fungal; native or alien invasive.
  • 1 August: Juicy views of the model board at NYC’s West Fourth Street control tower.
  • 1 September: From time to time I would remember a TV series from my childhood with a fairly simple premise: whatever the problem at hand might be, it could be solved by hopping into an airboat and zipping through the bayous to the other end of the county.
  • 4 October: Sheila Callaghan’s new play, a satire of gender roles and social expectations about mental and physical fitness, features some high-energy set pieces: white girls rapping about how to satisfy them, a dance club that morphs into a Paris boîte in the 1920s, a food fight with heads of lettuce.
  • 1 November: Andy Goldsworthy talks to Terry Gross.
  • 4 December: A couple of quick snaps from a short trip to Boston for training and meetings, with a visit to our Digital Services unit.

The year in review:

The year in review, 2014

Last roundup post of the year. The first sentence (more or less) of the first post of each month from this blog:

  • 2 January: My WATCH assignments for 2014.
  • 4 February: Leta is very special to me: here’s why.
  • 3 March: For the past 24 months, Matt Johnson has logged the car number for every Metro ride he’s taken.
  • 6 April: Margaret Chatham led a wildflower walk at the Nature Conservancy’s Fraser Preserve for VNPS.
  • 5 May: Two powerful solo shows played in the area over the past weekend, both of them responses to violence.
  • 1 June: A rose-colored scrim drapes the stage before each act of Act One, a dramatized version of Moss Hart’s memoir of becoming a playwright.
  • 1 July: We wrapped up the nesting season two weekends ago.
  • 2 August: The very first service alert that I’ve received from Metro pertaining to the Silver Line.
  • 1 September: For my Labor Day hike, I pushed a little longer and harder than I have done of late.
  • 2 October: I like poetry that rhymes and doesn’t rhyme, like today’s offering, Rebecca Foust’s “Dream of the Rood.”
  • 3 November: You say you’re designing a set for Romeo and Juliet and you can’t make a balcony work?
  • 8 December: The collisions of ideas and recriminations that highlight the first two acts of Tony Kushner’s Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide, multiple conversations/arguments taking place in the Brooklyn brownstone of Gus Marcantonio, are by turns invigorating and exhausting.

The year in review, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, and 2007.

The year in review, 2013

You know the drill. The first sentence (more or less) of the first post of each month from this blog:

  • 5 January: WATCH assignments for 2013 are out.
  • 3 February: David Lindsay-Abaire puts aside the wacky characters and situations of some of his earlier work (Wonder of the World, Fuddy Meers) and plays it straighter in his new Good People.
  • 2 March: Julian Elijah Martinez delivers a masterful performance as Daniel Reeves in Bill Cain’s 9 Circles.
  • 6 April: I’m back with NPR for a short gig, working on- and off-site.
  • 6 May: Seeking drama and humor in the living rooms of the privileged class, Jon Robin Baitz introduces us to Lyman and Polly Wyeth, retirees from 1960s-era Hollywood and old guard conservatives.
  • 2 June: Five last vocabulary builders from Robbe-Grillet’s La Jalousie.
  • 3 July: Sand Box John keeps us up to date.
  • 1 August: Last Saturday’s field trips took us to two freshwater wetlands in southern P.G. County, one well-known among naturalists, the other decidedly off the beaten path.
  • 1 September: Big data collector/distributor Acxiom is proffering a measure of transparency and consumer opt-out. aboutthedata.com is set to launch on Wednesday.
  • 5 October: One of my favorite underrepresented photographic subjects, the porcelain convenience at Shorpy.
  • 3 November: Round House Theatre marks its return to more engaging, contemporary material with a balanced ensemble performance of Melissa James Gibson’s This, a romantic comedy-drama for grieving grownups.
  • 1 December: Scott Weidensaul gives us a nudge to remember to look for bird-friendly certified shade-grown coffee.

The year in review, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, and 2007.

The year in review, 2012

Posts were a bit sparser this year.

The first sentence (more or less) of the first post of each month from this blog:

  • 1 January: Skunk Cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus) is emerging from the wet spots along the Glade in Reston.
  • 4 February: I’ve been intending to do a more thorough job of documenting the various bus stop signs around the area from the numerous jurisdictions and authorities.
  • 4 March: Both of the new boxes that we mounted in mid-February are home to clutches of Hooded Merganser eggs.
  • 1 April: I do expect that this will be the only series of posts with three colons in the title.
  • 1 May: Genie Baskir gives the thumbs-up for August: Osage County at ShowBizRadio.
  • 7 June: What is this? we ask ourselves ten minutes into Mr. Burns, a post-electric play.
  • 4 July: Hey, Leta, you’re on the TV!
  • 6 August: “Above all, the student should cultivate the scientific attitude of mind, and he should never believe in his infallibility.”
  • 3 September: Kathleen Akerley premieres another of her enjoyable head-scratchers.
  • 3 October: Almost ideal weather conditions (Friday’s passing cold front with storms, Saturday’s northwest winds) set up a great weekend birding in Cape May with a group led by Mark Garland.
  • 6 November: Leta and I took a quick road trip to Ohio last week.
  • 1 December: Sonja Ahlers <3 Heart.

The year in review, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, and 2007.

Tag

I’m experimenting with tagging a few of the posts here, in addition to the categories that I obsessively rework. The tag cloud in the sidebar is a little lumpy for the time being.

I picked read_me to tag a few select pieces, generally longer, that give you a fuller understanding of how my thinker works.

The year in review, 2011

Getting a bit of an early start on this post. Hey, Christmas is coming!

The first sentence (more or less) of the first post of each month from this blog:

  • 2 January: Bands of showers, clouds, and a little sunshine passed over us on Sugarloaf Mountain, on an ANS hike led by Cathy Stragar.
  • 2 February: Passive clauses are explained, defended by Geoffrey K. Pullum.
  • 1 March: “There was a certain coherency in [John Maynard] Keynes’s (the intellectual godfather of the IMF) conception of the [International Monetary] Fund and its role. “
  • 2 April: My term project, an analysis of the Comprehensive Plan for Fairfax County’s Area II, has been submitted for my class.
  • 1 May: When I hear on the radio the voice of an artist that I haven’t heard in a long time, it’s rarely happy news.
  • 4 June: Benjamin R. Freed covers Capital Talent Agency, Roger Yoerges and Jeremy Skidmore’s nascent representation outfit for local professional actors.
  • 1 July: Director Michael Kahn and his cast give a cool, clean, faithful reading of Harold Pinter’s enigmatic exploration of memory and friendship.
  • 1 August: Plays at this year’s CATF are dominated by grim themes of black-white race relations, with the concomitant issues of money, power, and social class.
  • 6 September: Metro map designers are floating the possibility that the line won’t be silver after all.
  • 2 October: My first of two walks under the auspices of WalkingTown DC was a quick spin through Fort Totten led by Mary Pat Rowan, with an emphasis on the woody plants of this semi-preserved area.
  • 2 November: Two treasuries of Washington photography…
  • 4 December: This ratty old building, window glazing missing from the upper stories, most recently was put to temporary uses like political campaign offices.

The year in review, 2010, 2009, 2008, and 2007.