Ever wanted to take a tour of famous writer’s homes in the area? Now you can, with DC Writer’s Homes as your guide! Kim Roberts and Dan Vera have compiled an amazing list of famous (and not so famous) literary figures, focusing on residences you can still walk by today. Picking three notables at random: Philip K. Dick, Ambrose Bierce, and Randall Jarrell.
I’ve been inspired by Nature Boy’s presence in Lafayette Park for a while now. He usually holds court on a bench near the Andrew Jackson statue, on the path from H St to the White House; he’s a distinctive presence with long white dreads and a regal air, wearing only a “loincloth” of cut up jeans, and carrying a long wooden staff. So it was great to see a little mention of him in the Washington Post’s print version on Tuesday, and this online series of pics featuring him. Turns out Elijah Alexander is a former preacher who set out to demonstrate the possibility of living a simpler life. (The photo here is one I took of him in May 2010.)
Nice article about the Chessie sighting this past July in the latest issue of Bay Journal, including a description of the first manatee sighting in the Chesapeake Bay, circa 1676!
After a ten-year absence, Chessie has returned to the Chesapeake Bay, having been photographed near Calvert, MD. First spotted 17 years ago, the manatee was thought to be a sea monster, like the Bay’s equivalent of Nessie. Chessie originally hails from Florida, but has made the swim northward several times. Once he was airlifted out of the water and returned to a manatee habitat near Orlando. Other manatees have been spotted in the Chesapeake and even further north on the Atlantic seaboard, but Chessie himself can be identified by a distinctive scar he received from a boat propeller. See Washington Post article for more info.
I seem to be doing this backwards. First, I wrote the Mondo DC book. Next, I contributed radio pieces to WAMU-FM’s Metro Connection show based on the book. Now, it’s the Mondo DC blog. I probably should have started here. The blog format may be the best way to explore the weirder aspects of the DC Metro area, as “permanent” sites can change, and there are plenty of temporary exhibits, concerts and events that would merit a “mondo” label.
If you hear of something cool, let me know. I’ll try to cover as many things as I can, including updates on established “tourist attractions” that I included in my book. Maybe one of these days I’ll even get around to writing a new book about DC’s most unusual tourist attractions.