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Metro Sells Out: Usually, name changes at Metro stations involve adding some neighborhood feature or nearby attraction (and yes, we’re talking about you, Archives-Navy Memorial-Penn Quarter). The next name swap might involve replacing all the clunky hyphenations with corporate ads. Strapped for cash, Metro officials are considering selling the naming rights to stations. Considering the new revelations that subway drivers frequently have to improvise bathroom breaks, we look forward to transferring at Depends Center soon. -4
Love, Government Style: The new D.C. Council was only sworn in last week, and apparently, they’ve already run out of important work to do. Or at least, that’s the impression we get from learning that council Chairman Kwame Brown spent the morning swearing in Top Chef star Carla Hall as D.C.’s “Secretary of Love and Relationships.” (Presumably, the Love and Relationships Bureau is a division of the D.C. Department of the Environment.) -1
Movin’ In: This year’s Census was the first one in decades that had found the District’s population growing, not shrinking, but it may not be the last. United Van Lines says D.C. had the best ratio of people moving into the city vs. people moving out in 2010, giving the District the snappy title of “highest inbound” state. The biggest loser? New Jersey. Of course, this ranking ignores anyone who moved without hiring movers, or for that matter, without hiring United Van Lines. But we still suspect D.C.’s a more popular destination than Jersey, no matter how you slice it. +2
Grocery Groveling Recommences: For years, residents of Columbia Heights have begged and pleaded with Whole Foods to grace their neighborhood with one of its stores, seeking validation in the form of outlandish markups for organic Chilean produce. That never actually succeeded, but for a while, it looked like Richmond-based Ellwood Thompson’s would move into the DC USA complex. Today, that dream died, too, as the chain formally backed out of a lease they had shown no signs of ever using. Considering it’s been barely five years since Giant built a new store a block away, the keen desire for a new grocery store in Columbia Heights never made a whole lot of sense to us, but neighbors have moved on—now they’re hoping for Trader Joe’s. -1
Yesterday’s Needle rating: 51 Today’s score: -4 Today’s Needle rating: 47