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Photograph by Flickr user Daniel Lobo.

Operating a motor vehicle in DC remains a truly awful experience, according to the latest internet ranking of cities by one of those websites that ranks cities along seemingly random metrics. Washington is the second-worst city for drivers, per WalletHub (which also determined recently that Washington is also a terrible place to raise your family).

Of the 100 largest US cities, WalletHub ranked the District in the bottom ten according to traffic and road conditions, safety, and "driver and car wellness." The first two are mostly straightforward—the American Society of Civil Engineer's 2013 Infrastructure Report Card found that 95 percent of DC's major roads are in "poor" condition—but the last metric is a bit wonky, taking into account things like auto-repair shops, car washes, dealerships, and the frequency of car shows. In fact, Washington has the third-fewest number of repair shops per capita, ahead of just Boston and Laredo, Texas.

The District was also found to have the second-highest accident likelihood compared to the national average, a finding that largely matches up with data culled by Allstate. Washington was dead last when it comes to the average number of hours lost to traffic jams. WalletHub cites a report by the Texas A&M Transportation Institute that found the average DC driver loses 67 hours per year to road congestion.

This ranking is at least the second one this year to declare the District the second-worst big city for motorists, but it suggests that the internet is in disagreement with itself. Although WalletHub's ranking cited many of the same data as one published in May by NerdWallet—another personal-finance website that sorts cities and states according to random qualities—it ranked New York as dead last. NerdWallet put only Boston behind Washington. The only thing that is clear is that even if Washington sucks for driving, it doesn't suck the most.

Posted at 12:11 PM/ET, 07/16/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()
And they make one particularly delicious treat...
Photograph by Andrew Propp.

A Georgetown bakery might be the last spot you’d expect to find wounded veterans, but that’s what the staff is mostly composed of at Dog Tag Bakery. Founders Rick Curry and Connie Milstein—he’s a priest, she’s an entrepreneur and philanthropist—opened the storefront in December. Their mission? To prepare disabled vets for gainful employment in civilian life. The work/study arrangement goes beyond baking and packing orders—Dog Tag Inc. fellows participate in a service-to-civilian transitional program, which includes earning a business-administration certificate at Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Studies. The goal is to harness and feed their entrepreneurial spirit while providing a safe space to readjust to civilian life. And the cinnamon buns ain’t bad, either.

3206 Grace St., NW; 202-527-9388.

This article appears in our July 2015 issue of Washingtonian.

Posted at 10:33 AM/ET, 07/16/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()
Few associate the "Great Gatsby" author with this area, but he had deep roots here. By Matt Blitz
Photograph by JayHenry/Wikimedia Commons.

Right off of Rockville Pike, a half-mile walk from a Red Line Metro stop, one of America’s greatest writers lies in eternal rest.

But while The Great Gatsby is still required reading in many local school districts, some area residents may be surprised to learn its author is buried, along with his famed wife Zelda, in a small Catholic cemetery in suburban Maryland.

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Posted at 11:53 AM/ET, 07/15/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()
Photograph by 360b via Shutterstock.

Uber has recruited drivers to its ride-hailing service by advertising earnings of up to $90,000 a year. While drivers who approach those those figures are found as commonly as unicorns and dragons, the company—along with its closest competitor, Lyft—keep drivers' actual earnings very secretive.

But according to Sherpa Share, a service used by people tabulating the money they make while driving for Uber, Lyft, Postmates, Instacart, and other companies in the on-demand economy, Uber drivers around Washington don't come close to the company's lofty promises. Drivers in DC on the UberX platform made $12.17 per trip in May after expenses, according to data released Wednesday by Sherpa Share. Lyft was a bit more lucrative, with drivers behind the "glowstaches" taking in $13.95 per trip.

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Posted at 10:50 AM/ET, 07/15/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()
But they're better-looking than Boston's dudes. By Michelle Thomas
These men are so handsome, they're probably from Seattle. Photograph via Shutterstock.

In case you've ever wondered exactly how DC's men stack up against those in the rest of our country, well, here's one answer: According to surely very scientific research, the DC company Grooming Lounge ranks its hometown's guys as the third most handsome nationwide, lagging behind only Seattle and San Francisco. New York and Los Angeles came in at numbers six and 16, respectively. Miami fell dead last. Cleveland--Cleveland--has a more handsome male population than Miami does.

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Posted at 04:30 PM/ET, 07/14/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()
What's she doing there? By Andrew Beaujon
This is not the Washington Post newsroom. But it is Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Photograph by Patrick Harbron via HBO.

Veep star Julia Louis-Dreyfus is in the Washington Post newsroom, according to multiple employees, many of whom are finding excuses to get water and walk on by, I hear. I've asked HBO and the Post what she's doing there. And I'm looking for more photos! (Email me: abeaujon@washingtonian.com; Twitter @abeaujon.) Here are some tweets from Post staffers.

Louis-Dreyfus visited with US Senator John McCain Monday and posted a picture of a floor at the US Capitol on Instagram Tuesday.

Pretty patriotic floor tile at the U.S. Capitol. #veep

A photo posted by Julia Louis-Dreyfus (@officialjld) on

Posted at 10:34 AM/ET, 07/14/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()
Farewell to the beautiful life. Photograph by Flickr user Elvert Barnes.

Dan Silverman, the author of popular restaurant-evangelizing and pet-photo-collecting blog PoPville, confesses a shocking development in a post today: He no longer lives in Petworth, the fast-developing neighborhood where he launched his site—originally called Prince of Petworth—in 2006. Silverman writes that he has recently taken up residence on the far side of Rock Creek Park.

Silverman moved for school reasons: He's got a two-and-a-half-year-old daughter and another on the way (Mazel tov!), and last year's revision of DC Public Schools' boundaries moved him out of his "preferred elementary school," he writes.

We wish Silverman all the best in raising his family, but this move raises a serious issue: We can't call him the Prince of Petworth now that he's moved away. And because DC neighborhood nerds dispute whether or not "Van Ness" is a legitimate neighborhood (the titular Metro station is in Forest Hills), here are several options for Silverman to consider:

  • Viscount or Viceroy of Van Ness
  • Friar of Forest Hills
  • Treasurer of Tenleytown
  • Commandant of Cleveland Park
  • Knave of North Cleveland Park
  • Marshal of McLean Gardens
  • Archduke of American University Park
  • Sir Dan of Spring Valley
  • Proconsul of the Palisades
  • Privy Counsellor of Potomac Heights
  • First Lord of Foxhall
  • Friar of Friendship Heights
  • Grand Moff of Glover Park
  • Khal of Kent
  • Warrant Officer of Wesley Heights
  • Warren of Wakefield
  • Chancellor of Chevy Chase
  • Baron of Barnaby Woods
  • Holy Roman Emperor of Hawthorne
  • Usher of Upper Caucasia
  • Wizard of the Wilson High School Boundary

Posted at 03:45 PM/ET, 07/13/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()
Photo courtesy of @acreativedc.

Best News Blogs: Local News Now

Like most blogs, Local News Now began in a living room, when Scott Brodbeck launched ARLnow.com in January 2010 to document life in Arlington. Obsessive (but not mind-numbing) reporting on communities paid off, with Brodbeck’s operation evolving into an eight-person team and additional sites reporting on Reston and Capitol Hill. (The company recently sold its Bethesda site to Bethesda Magazine.)

“What we really want to do is create places where we can start community conversations,” Brodbeck says. The sites get a combined 1.7 million page views a month, making Local News Now competitive with older local blogs such as DCist and PoPville. Brodbeck is now reviving Borderstan—a DC neighborhood blog that shut down in 2013—to focus on Dupont Circle, Logan Circle, Columbia Heights, U Street, and Adams Morgan.

Best Local Blog: Greater Greater Washington

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Posted at 01:11 PM/ET, 07/13/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()
Next steps for anyone affected by the OPM mess. By Angie Hilsman, Benjamin Freed
Image by Brian A Jackson/Via Shutterstock.

Thanks to two related hacks, sensitive information for nearly everyone who’s worked for—or tried to work for—the federal government since 2000 is in the hands of some distant bad actor. So how are government employees supposed to protect themselves?

If you're one of them, you can take very little, very cold comfort from this fact: "Your information has already been for sale for several years in the cybercrime underground," Brian Krebs, founder of Krebs on Security, says. Citing large data breaches against Home Depot, Target, JPMorgan Chase, and other companies with tens of millions of customers’ data on file, University of Maryland University College cyber-security instructor Jeff Tjiputra agrees: “At this point, having your data stolen is normal,” he says.

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Posted at 12:09 PM/ET, 07/13/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()
Ingrid Nelson jumps in to help her students. Photograph by David Rice.

Fitness enthusiasts celebrated the start of summer at Washingtonian’s Fit Fest on Saturday, June 20 at the Carnegie Library. Fabrication Events transformed the space into a bright and energetic atmosphere. Guests received Crunch fitness bags upon arrival and filled them with goodies from the marketplace. During lunch, attendees listened to local experts discuss health and wellness moderated by 107.3’s Sarah Fraser. Participants enjoyed classes from the area’s best fitness instructors, such as barre, crossfit, pilates, piloxing, acroyoga, zumba and more!

Fitness Sponsors: 202strong, Balance Gym, Barre Tech, Crunch, Divas & Dolls Fitness, Ingrid Nelson, Flywheel Sports, Fuse Pilates, Justin Blazejewki, ProYoga, In the Mix with Shawni, and Spark Yoga.

Marketplace Sponsors: 202strong, Balance Gym Barre Tech Barbell Babes, Center for Vein Restoration, Crunch Divas & Dolls Fitness, Flywheel Sports, Fuse Pilates, In the Mix with Shawni Juice Joint, The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Nava Health & Vitality Center, Orangetheory Fitness, Protein Bar, ProYoga PureRyde, Relay Foods, Spark Yoga Sweetgreen, Vein Clinics of America, and Zengo Cycle.

Food Sponsors: Glen’s Garden Market and Whole Foods

Panelists: Amy K. Mitchell, Chris Marshall, Nicola Haire, Jessica Ernst, and moderator Sarah Fraser.

Venue Sponsor: Carnegie Library and Events DC

Production Partner: Fabrication Events

Music Partner: EventPro

Entertainment Partner: Booth-o-Rama Photobooths

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Posted at 11:23 AM/ET, 07/13/2015 | Permalink | Comments ()