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

Good morning, RVA: 17th Street Market, principal swaps, and Vision Zero

Good morning, RVA! It's 73 °F, and I thought it was supposed to be cooler today! Don't lie to me, three-day forecast. Expect highs in the low 90s, lots of sun, and maybe a few clouds this evening. Theoretically the temperature will drop a few degrees over the weekend.

Water cooler

There's a lot going on for me in this most recent Michael Paul Williams column. First, I'm really interested in why business owners around the 17th Street Market are way more chill about the construction's impact on their livelihood than those adjacent to the Maggie Walker plaza or up and down the Pulse corridor. Second, there's a desperate need for public space down in the Bottom (and across downtown, really). If you need to wait 15 minutes for your bus, your next meeting, or until your lunch date shows up, outside of the Capitol lawn there aren't a ton of options. Third, the area does have a connective tissue problem. There's a bunch of cool stuff down there, but walking or biking between them is, at the moment, really uncomfortable.

Yesterday a woman was hit by a car while crossing Broad Street at 8th Street and was taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries. This is an incredibly high traffic area for pedestrians, and drivers of multi-ton metal machines must yield to soft and vulnerable pedestrians—no matter what color the light is. It is far past time that Richmond gets serious about implementing its Vision Zero policy, a policy City Council passed a resolution in support of several years ago. How many more people need to be hurt or killed before we realize folks have the right to walk around town safely?

Katy Burnell Evans at the RTD reports that the principal of Lindwood Holton Elementary School, Mr. Hudson, will shift over to Franklin Military Academy in the East End. As a Holton parent for the last couple of years, sure, I'm a little bummed, but what I really am is excited for what he'll bring to Franklin. Something to keep in mind: The School Board will consider moving Franklin to share space with Richmond Community (among other options) as a way to deal with the crumbling George Mason Elementary building. IMHO, it'd be smart to have someone like Hudson in charge at Franklin to lead the school through a challenging transition. School Board meets this coming Monday to figure out what they want to do about George Mason.

Here's my favorite piece of local content for the week: Ned Oliver's ultra-charming video about the recent Putt Putt tournament.

RVA Mag has their picks for tonight's First Friday art walk. Scroll before you walk!

This short article on Vox helped me understand why everyone was tweeting "Boom" with the news that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has called for a grand jury.


  • Squirrels head to New Hampshire to face the Fisher Cats tonight at 7:05 PM.
  • Kickers head to Pittsburgh to take on the Riverhounds, Saturday at 7:00 PM. You can watch on CBS 6.3.
  • Nats start a series with the cubs today at 2:20 PM.

This morning's longread

We Need to Talk About Digital Blackface in Reaction GIFs

Teen Vogue is back, giving me things to think seriously about.

If there’s one thing the Internet thrives on, it’s hyperbole and the overrepresentation of black people in GIFing everyone’s daily crises plays up enduring perceptions and stereotypes about black expression. And when nonblack users flock to these images, they are playacting within those stereotypes in a manner reminiscent of an unsavory American tradition. Reaction GIFs are mostly frivolous and fun. But when black people are the go-to choice for nonblack users to act out their most hyperbolic emotions, do reaction GIFs become “digital blackface”?

Good morning, RVA: Violence, George Mason, and access to jobs

Good morning, RVA: Gotta educate, public space in the Bottom, and RIP Guinness