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A regular summary of irregular news and notes from neighborhood blogs and email lists around the District.
Beeware: A beekeeping expert has been posting on several email lists to warn about mobs of killer bees coming to town: “Swarm of bees? CALL ME!” He writes that, “The crazy Winter and even warmer Spring have had a major impact on not just people, but also the natural life around us. This includes honeybees, which are reacting by swarming earlier and in unusual places.” Bee wrangling is something best left to the experts—for the bees’ sake. “Please remember: honeybees are under extreme threat, and those swarms represent the unique populations that have not only figured out how to survive pests, pesticides, and climate change, but THRIVE. We beekeepers can grab those bees, give them safe homes somewhere else, and help ensure a healthier future where honeybees can continue to make our food supply and green spaces grow.” If you ever find yourself being chased down the street by swarm of bees, just remember, “It is a kind of compliment to DC that we have a place where honeybees can live so well.”
Not-So-Silent Spring: Someone in Brookland is concerned about the environmental impact of gas-powered leaf blowers—and, of course, the noise. He writes, “It’s time to ban gas-powered leaf blowers in the District of Columbia. In the past, this message might have been more appropriate in the fall, during leaf blower season, but now gardening companies deploy leaf blowers all year round, sometimes in teams of two or more, making it hard to work, use the phone, or even think.” He goes on to point out the damage a leaf-blower can cause, relative to a pick-up truck: “We’re all familiar with the ear-splitting noise that gas-powered leaf blowers make, but a recent look at gas-powered leaf blowers found that they produce vastly more air pollution than driving a Ford Raptor pickup truck does.” All this is to advocate for a piece of legislation Councilmember Mary Cheh is about to propose, which would ban gas-powered leaf blowers. However, one neighbor seems less-than-enthusiastic about the impact of this measure. He writes, “The legislation we need to reduce noise and air pollution, is too transition away from gas powered lawn equipment. Any and all non-essential gas powered machinery, where there is electric or manual replacements.” He goes on to rant about the District’s general lack of environmental conscientiousness, “The environmental consciousness in DC is pathetic. I gave the same information to Mary Cheh on an on-line chat session. She said “I’ve been thinking about that”. Good Councilmember Cheh, let me know if you’ll ever do anything about it!! I recently confronted her on the Kojo Nnamdi show, and asked the same question, she said ‘I’ve been thinking about that.’ When is the DC govt. going to pay attention to our priorities, for a clean, safe, quiet community. The endless sirens are medically damaging our residents. The summer is no stop loud , polluting gasoline powered lawn care equipment.” Finally, he admonishes the original concerned Brookland-dweller for being more self-interested than sincerely concerned about the environment: “Your position seems like there is one set of lawn equipment that disturbs you. Don’t you feel we need to address the entire noisy polluting problem. Take a really environmental stand. Not just the part that must bother you personally.”
D.C.’s Finest: Someone on the Adams Morgan email list wants to spread awareness about the trials and tribulations of being a police officer. He posted a piece from a blog written by a member of the U.K. police force. He writes, “I read this article and could only help but think about the abuse heaped upon DC MPD…it seemed appropriate.”
Oh Deer!: One Chevy Chase neighbor is playing the blame game. The accused: the Bambis running around in the area. Concerned about the preponderance of accidents in the circle, he writes, “While I’m on the subject of traffic safety around here, just an alert that 3 times in the past year or so when exiting onto Conn. Ave from the Beltway, going south towards D.C., I encountered a deer right on the side of (or in one case, right in the middle of) the exit ramp.” Another resident is more amused than concerned about the neighborhood deer population: “I was driving down Aberfoyle toward 31st Street a little after 8 this evening and saw animals in the road so I stopped. I then realized that the chasing animal was a fox and the chasee was a cat (calico). The cat did not seem to be particularly distressed, and both paused and watched me. I have seen foxes on numerous occasions in this area, but had not seen one interacting with a cat.”