June 30, 2010

“No Train on Wayne”? The Purple Line Saga

Posted in musings tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 9:37 am by silversprung

They dot the lawns and front entryways of many homes across Silver Spring- the purple “No Train on Wayne” lawn signs. I’m well-aware of the longstanding Purple Line metro project, but decided to do a little research on the reaction Silver Spring residents have to the plan.

I’m sure all you longtime residents know the story, but for all those readers new to the area and those who’ve never visited, here goes…

The proposed purple line would connect Prince George’s county in the east with Montgomery County in the west offering commuters a mass transit alternative to the Beltway. 

Last August, Gov. Martin O’Malley announced his choice of a Light Rail Transit system over a rapid bus system as the preferred method of transportation for the line. O’Malley said last year that LRT is favored because it’s more “cost-effective and rider-friendly” and argued that light rail has made many advances and won’t be as disturbing as other, older light rail systems.

Read the rest of this entry »


May 24, 2010

A Guide to Acting Like You’re Not From Around Here

Posted in musings tagged , , , , , , , , , , , at 12:34 pm by silversprung

I recently had guests in town and had a few good laughs about the things they said or did because they weren’t local. So below, I’ve written a short guide on how not to fit in with residents of the Washington, DC metro region, especially Silver Springers.

10. Call the metro the “subway.”

9. Wear clothing marked “FBI,” “CIA,” or the presidential seal.

8. Block people from walking on the metro escalators (stand right, walk left, folks.)

7. Ask if Chevy Chase, Maryland, Chevy Chase Bank, etc. are connected to Chevy Chase the actor. Read the rest of this entry »

March 31, 2010

Silver Spring: It’s Penguin Fever and You’re Going to Like It

Posted in history, musings tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 10:43 am by silversprung

It’s been impossible for me to ignore the ubiquitous penguins of Silver Spring. We turned a corner the other day at Cedar and Ellsworth, and there, plopped in the middle of the median, stood a waxy, penguin-like statue, its head cocked to the side, giving us the eye.

“What the heck?”

They’re hanging out at the metro, too. The uber-confusing “Transit Info” signs posted around the giant construction zone that is the current Silver Spring Metro are adorned with fat, little cartoon penguins donning construction hats. (See image left. Yeah, that fat little bugger.)

This isn’t the arctic, it’s Maryland. Read the rest of this entry »

March 17, 2010

Commute This!

Posted in musings tagged , , , , , , , , , , at 10:23 am by silversprung

It’s been four days since we’ve moved to Silver Spring and the absence of an Internet connection is definitely impeding my ability to blog (okay, it’s completely destroying it.) But anyway, I think I’ll have that problem solved tonight so check back tomorrow for more frequent posting.

In the meantime, I wanted to bring up the subject of commuting. Between silversprung spouse and I, we’ve covered all the bases so far- Beltway during rush hour, Silver Spring Ride-On buses, metro from Silver Spring, metro at Takoma.

I’m used to underground metro-ing so it was nice to see that Silver Spring to downtown DC is above-ground. But I was struck by the fact that enormous, continuous graffiti lines the entire route. I know there are obviously more pressing things to crack down on, but still, that’s an entire seven miles of “JUJU” and “Freak” and a giant “Obama Hates Borf” at Takoma.  (Remember Borf?) One upside: I can glance up at the graffiti and know what stop we’ve reached.

Has the graffiti always been there or is it a recent development?

What’s your commute like in the area? Any tricks of the trade we should know?