Once upon a time I ran a news site, now I just have opinions on the news. 

Good morning, RVA: School board info, disappointing choices, and stained glass windows

Good morning, RVA! It's 44 °F, and today's sunny highs are wonderfully in the mid 60s. Keep it up, weather!

Water cooler

Sometimes I wonder what I would do without Garet Prior and Richmond Forward. Probably stumble around in the darkness and not know anything about Richmond Public Schools and their funding needs—and that doesn't sound great. Today's fact-laden update is a doozy, and you should set aside some time to read it and just about everything to which it links. You'll learn about the new superintendent Jason Kamras, the facilities task force meeting tonight, the lack of details in Interim Superintendent Kranz's recent facilities presentation, and some next steps you can take. Go read the thing, get updated, and get involved!

The lead story on the Richmond Times-Dispatch website today is about how Matt Lauer once worked in Richmond and really is a pretty good guy. That's an extremely disappointing choice. Read the Variety story about Lauer, and let me know if a man who gave a sex toy to a coworker as a gift (with instructions) and who had a secret button under his desk to lock his office door sounds like a pretty good guy.

My general state of annoyance continues at the State government for swooping in and taking over Richmond City streets as if they own the place. Michael Martz at the RTD has an update on the State's plans to close a teensy part of Bank Street to vehicle traffic so legislators and teen pages can cross the street to the Capitol from their new home in the Pocahontas building. You know I'm all for closing streets to cars, but I'm also for taking advantage of opportunities to make our streets permanently safer for humans. How much better could this project have been if the State chose to work with the City to turn Bank Street into a well-designed bike/pedestrian wonderland? Now, for four years, every winter we'll have an unfamiliar traffic pattern and probably ugly temporary barriers. Cool, cool. It's also unclear to me how these changes impact the City's existing bike and pedestrian plans, and I eagerly await someone who knows more to alert me if/when I should increase my general state of annoyance to Angry Bike and Pedestrian Guy levels.

Mark Robinson reports that the Mayor continues his quest to improve the unsexy parts of City government. He's bringing unsexy back! Here's where I wanted to rewrite the entirety of "SexyBack" to be about permitting processes, but I'll leave that to you. Take it to the bridge!

Have I talked about Henrico's plans to bring real bus service to the airport? I've talked about it so much, it's getting hard to remember who I've yammered on to about it. Anyway, as part of the Pulse opening and the rejiggering of all our bus routes, Henrico has decided to extend the #7 bus to the Richmond International Airport. This is excellent news as the only bus the serves the airport now shows up just three times each day, which makes it pretty useless for travelers and many employees. Of course, there's still work to be done: This bus will not run on weekends and will only run from 6:00 AM–7:00 PM. It's a great start, and I want to give Henrico a smiley face with sunglasses emoji for taking a great step in the direction of a frequent and far-reaching regional transit system.

Edwin Slipek writes this piece about Richmond's stained glass windows that I am really into. I would like to read more long, charmingly-written pieces that teach me about small things in Richmond I've not thought a lot about.


  • Spiders fell to 1-6 after a 65-71 loss to Vermont.
  • Washington heads to Texas to take on the Cowboys tonight at 8:25 PM.

This morning's longread

How Children Change the Way We See

Sometimes, kids are rad.

And children do speak, eventually. Talking to my kids about what we’re looking at helps clarify my thinking, much as reading aloud something you’re writing can sharpen a sentence. I have to articulate, in terms a kid can comprehend, what I see or feel or think about a piece of art. I find I don’t rush to my own judgment, even if I think I’ve already made that judgment. Looking at Carmen Herrera’s precise minimalist paintings last winter at the Whitney, I stumbled over explaining to my kids why I like them—their precision, the beautiful purity of her colors—and realized that was something I’d never fully explained to myself.

If you’d like to suggest a longread, go chip in a couple bucks on the ol’ Patreon.

Good morning, RVA: THE holiday weekend, punting on facilities, and December birthdays

Good morning, RVA: Join the Education Compact, zoning, and ice cream