Get local news delivered straight to your phone

We can't make City Paper without you

$
$
$

Your contribution is appreciated.

Last Thursday morning, Columbia Heights Coffee co-owners Marty Zupancic and Cheryl Gordon found that their cafe had been extrajudicially tried, and convicted, of yuppifying the neighborhood. Seven red, stenciled houses were spray-painted onto the sidewalk in front of their shop, all labeled with the command “STOP GENTRIFICATION” on top. “That really hurt us,” says Gordon of the 14-letter word. “We’re not in favor of that.” Both she and Zupancic live a few blocks from their shop, she says, which was built by “local guys” and is supplied by a neighborhood baker and coffee roaster. For extra neighborhood cred, Gordon points out that she’s a Howard University graduate and her father, a Columbia Heights native, went to Dunbar High School. The culprits have not been apprehended, though Zupancic says a couple of his customers claim the vandals were just bored kids from downtown, fighting gentrification “just like how some people toilet-paper houses in the suburbs.” —Jeff Horwitz