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

Good morning, RVA: Trauma, reach, and cake mixes

Good morning, RVA! It's 67 °F, and today expect highs right around 80 °F. It's an excellent day to spend some time on a bike, on your feet, or in a chair on your patio. Welcome to Monday!

Water cooler

Please read this tremendously sad piece by Katy Burnell Evans in the RTD about the impact gun violence has on our city's children. Angela Jones, RPS's director of the Office of Family and Community Engagement, puts it like this: "What’s going on in our communities right now is so overwhelming for our children that we are seeing outward expressions of them maybe having no response, but it’s playing out in different ways...They can’t focus at school, they’re fighting at the slightest provocation. We can’t expect them to come sit down and read when they’re thinking about the gunshots and screams they heard last night.”

Kind of related: The Two People podcast is back, and the newest episode features Allison Jackson, an expert in the field of childhood trauma. Give it a listen, and I'm pretty sure you'll end up with a pile of stuff to think through. Or, if video is more your speed, you can check out Jackson's TED talk.

This past weekend, Richmond Cycling Corp took some of their youth to see the Confederate monuments and then published one of their youth's thoughts on the experience. You've probably seen it—that post currently has 16,300 shares; 5,500 comments; and the Richmond Times-Dispatch published it in its entirety. That's incredible (and maybe terrifying) reach and exposure. Rather than talk about how it made me feel, I want to instead link to Samantha Willis's response and some of the comments on it (including those from Michael Paul Williams). That's all for today's monument news.

Just kidding! I enjoyed Candidate Danica Roem's thoughtful take on how she'd handle Confederate stuff in Manassas, a place synonymous with the Civil War. Reporter Graham Moomaw has the story which contains additional quotes from local state-level legislators.

A while back, Richmond City Council set up the Task Force on the Establishment of a Human Rights Commission. As the task force works through whether or not to set up the commission (see the many layers of government at work!), they're asking for folks to fill out this survey. You have until September 21st, and it'll take all of five minutes. This has been Today's Way To Get Involved™!

Planning Commission meets today and will consider Monroe Park's Portland Loo as part of their regular agenda. I'm hopeful that we can get one of these modern, durable public bathrooms up and running. If this solution works, as it has in some other towns (like Portland), then maybe we could get a few installed in other parts of the city that need public bathrooms.

/r/RVA has a looooong thread about where you can get the best fired chicken in Richmond. Lee's gets lots of love (because it's awesome), but there are also a bunch of other, lesser-known spots that I now need to check out.

The NYT has the longest piece I've ever read about cake mixes.


  • Kickers fell to the Battery, 0-1.
  • Spiders torched Howard, 68-21.
  • #13 Hokies walloped East Carolina, 64-17.
  • Wahoos picked up a win against UConn, 38-18.
  • Nats went 1-2 against the Dodgers over the weekend.
  • Washington beat the Rams, 27-20.

This morning's longread

Mystery of sonic weapon attacks at US embassy in Cuba deepens

The more I read about this, the more I'm like 😳😳😳.

The blaring, grinding noise jolted the American diplomat from his bed in a Havana hotel. He moved just a few feet, and there was silence. He climbed back into bed. Inexplicably, the agonizing sound hit him again. It was as if he’d walked through some invisible wall cutting straight through his room. Botched surveillance job may have led to strange injuries at US embassy in Cuba Soon came the hearing loss, and the speech problems, symptoms both similar and altogether different from others among at least 21 US victims in an astonishing international mystery still unfolding in Cuba. The top US diplomat has called them “health attacks”.

Good morning, RVA: 7th District, Bike Restaurant Week, and gubernatorial debate

Good morning, RVA: Richmond readies, Oktoberfest, and Cassini