Archives For Baltimore
Last night brought a snowstorm the likes of which the City has not seen in years… in ’96 I spent a week snowed in during the big storm… today does not look much different, except the snow keeps coming so much faster
The USPS lived up to their promise of “neither rain, nor sleet, nor dark of night” today, yay mail!
Living in the Balto/D.C. metro area and looking for something to do this weekend? Well then head down to D.C. this Saturday (19 Dec) for the fourth annual Holiday Booty Market! Featuring the work of twenty regional artists and crafters, the market is a great chance to find last-minute holiday treasures for your loved ones all while browsing among the beautiful furniture available at Design Within Reach. A few of the vendors featured Saturday include:
October was such a busy month that it’s hard to believe that we’re already four days into November; but here we are, the day before
Guy Fawkes Day the TEDxMidAtlantic conference.
I’m excited to see what tomorrow’s conference holds and hope to have plenty to share in the days following the event. In the meantime, if you haven’t already read it, there is a thoughtful article about the conference in today’s Baltimore Sun.
And if you were not lucky enough to obtain registry for tomorrow’s event, beginning tomorrow (5 Nov 09) there shall be a live feed of the event available here.
Recently, I’ve been doing a lot of networking; and one of the frequent topics of conversation has been the City itself, Baltimore. People inevitably want to understand why I left sunny California and adventurous Colorado for what is often perceived as a humdrum, quirky little town on the Chesapeake. And my answer is always the same– “I love Baltimore;” I do.
There is something inexplicably wonderful about this funny little town. It is, admittedly, an acquired taste, one that is subtle and, in some ways, complex very much like blue crab– not everyone gets it or likes it, but those who do are are devoted to the flavor. As a crab lover and a proud Baltimoron (or Baltimorean for the more genteel) I gladly preach the gospel of the City, but am not terribly surprised by those upon whom the cause is lost.
This evening, while catching up on the long thread of blogs I read, I came across a post that included a thoughtful video of David Simon, discussing Baltimore. It is so right on the money, that I had to repost it here. For those who share the love of the City, hopefully you’ll nod your head in agreement with some of his tongue-in-cheek observations. And for those new or still unfamiliar with the City, perhaps it will inspire you to learn more and take a visit to Charm City.
One of my favorite quotes from the video: “If you come from D.C., you sort of have to admit you’re not from a real place.”
Go check it out, the video is eight minutes of thoughtful insight.
The last few days of rain and autumnal gloom have lulled my memories back to Göteborg. I haven’t paid it much mind over the last few years– I finished my MFA and didn’t really look back afterward.
But here I am, back in Baltimore after a move back from Sweden, and
two three 1500mi+ moves. I’m meeting and reconnecting with tons of people, so all of the ground I’ve covered in the last ten years is getting shuffled around in the foreground of my mind more than usual. But today, today felt like another day in Göteborg.
Images: Me (scanned from my old printed photos, no less!)
I can’t recall the specific moment in my life where I discovered this amalgam of spices, but I’m pretty certain it was my father who made the introduction. Since that imperceptible moment in my childhood, Old Bay has been a flavor central to my love and perception of Baltimore and the taste of home. Every time I have moved somewhere far away, Old Bay has been a co-pilot. Everywhere I have traveled for any length of time, Old Bay has been a friendly companion. During my sojourn in Sweden, Old Bay was a quiet comfort– a taste of home in what sometimes felt like a surreal, parallel universe. It is an element that helps me define home regardless of language, culture or postal code.
To see this unusual flavor highlighted in a national newspaper is, if nothing else, a novel boost. I’ve been back in Baltimore a few short weeks after many, many years away; seeing a hometown favorite is terribly reassuring– a confirmation that, yes, I belong here. Jane Black’s article in the Post does an excellent job of outlining the history of the spice and its cult status among some of the locals of the Mid-Atlantic. I will admit to my membership in the brotherhood of the Bay, just don’t expect me to share our secret handshake.
How about you, dear readers? Are you Old Bay aficionados? Or is it a flavor you’ve not yet sampled? What condiment, spice or flavor do you use in a cultish or obsessive way?
Image: The Perfect Pantry
Last weekend, I ventured down to the water for the Fells Point Fun Festival; it was the first time I had been down that way in almost five years. In all of the years I’ve been away, parts of the City have truly grown and revitalized in a way I was not fully prepared for.
So it was a bit of a shock to see the once cracked and fractured corners of Fells Point completely rebuilt into new homes, condos, cafes and businesses. Whole buildings I’d grown to love were gone, and while I was delighted to see the community dancing in the streets under a summery sun, it was sad to see fleeting pieces of our history gone.
While tidying earlier this evening, though, I realized I still have a few pieces of those buildings we lost in old photographs:
What do you think? Are there buildings or monuments from Baltimore’s past that you miss? Are there architectural disasters you’re glad are gone?
Growing up in Baltimore, exposure to Edgar Allen Poe was inevitable; you might say Baltimorians or Baltimorons (if you prefer) are well versed in Poe-etry. While some argue the author’s association with Baltimore, the city continues to dote on its departed darling of the macabre.
This past January (the 19th to be exact) was the bicentennial of his birth, and since then the city of Baltimore has been celebrating the milestone with ongoing events and exhibits throughout the year. The programming for Nevermore 2009 includes a range of events from theatrical performances to gallery exhibitions and walking tours.
The September 25 performance of Berenice at the National Museum of Dentistry should prove to be interesting and I can only imagine what his funeral service on October 10 shall be like with a number of notable “dignitaries” in attendance. Of all the happenings around this milestone though, I hope most to visit the Art of Darkness: Inspired by Poe exhibition at the Baltimore Museum of Art on display from October 2009 through January 2010. Autumn is, quite arguably, one of the best times of the year to visit Baltimore– the light is golden, the leaves are turning and there are always tons of great cafes and galleries to discover and enjoy. If you’ve never been, there’s nothing like a long October weekend getaway in Charm City, check out the City’s visitor’s bureau Web site for travel ideas, or ask a local, ask me!
Images: WikiMedia Commons’ file of C.T. Tatman’s 1904 photograph copy of an 1848 daguerreotype (LOC Reproduction Number: LC-USZ62-10610).