City Desk

Neighborhood News Roundup: Brown-Headed Cowbird Editon

A regular summary of irregular news and notes from neighborhood blogs and email lists around the District.

Neighborhood News RoundupFor the Birds, II: Brookland is all about bird-watching these days. After a discussion over the weekend on what plants might best attract hummingbirds, a member of the neighborhood email list notes, "We have a bunch of brown headed cowbirds in our backyard. This is the first time we have had them." Brown-headed cowbirds are unremarkable-looking (despite their very silly name), but according to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, they're quite the moochers: "Females forgo building nests and instead put all their energy into producing eggs, sometimes more than three dozen a summer. These they lay in the nests of other birds, abandoning their young to foster parents, usually at the expense of at least some of the host’s own chicks." That's not very neighborly.

Public Service Announcement: New Columbia Heights reminds readers that Columbia Heights' newest (and perhaps only) sports bar, Lou's City Bar, didn't actually replace Commonwealth Gastropub. The most notable dish at Jamie Leeds'—of Hank's Oyster Bar fame—restaurant seemed to be the Scotch eggs; inevitably, New Columbia Heights' post has tipped off a wishlist from commenters of what they'd like to see in the neighborhood. Two suggestions include "a Kebab/Mediterranean joint like the ones they have in Adams Morgan. On a day when I don't feel like making the trek– a Shwarma King or Astor Mediterranean close by would be heaven" and "a cupcake joint with a liquor license."

In Brightwood, Business is Booming: There's been lots of movement on and nearby upper Georgia Avenue recently. Last week, The Brightwoodian noted that Baltimore-based Red Tree would be opening a D.C. shop, Trohv. Over the the past week, Washington Deli has had its soft opening and should move to regular hours soon. There's a general consensus that Washington Deli's pizza and subs—which include vegan options—will be good for the neighborhood. Writes one commenter, "SO GLAD they've finally opened! I've been a fan of their vegan sandwiches and slices at the downtown location for some time–nice to have them in the neighborhood!" A new Brightwood blog, Almost Undefined, gives it a thumbs-up, too.

Best in the Business: Speaking of local businesses, there's quite an ode to Cathedral Pharmacy on the Cleveland Park email list. After Walgreen's and CVS both failed to secure a particular skin care product for a neighborhood resident, Cathedral Pharmacy was able to do so—by the next day—with little trouble. This prompted the resident to write, "The chains offer certain useful services; I do give them my business. For me, however, independents remain the leaders in what can only be referred to as good customer service when it comes to the diversity products they offer and the willingness to take the extra step for (even infrequent, such as me) customers. Our community has a few independent retailers –such as Cathedral Pharmacy– who go out of their way to serve this neighborhood. If we hope to keep them here, and to benefit from the services they offer, we need to remember that they count on us, and patronize their stores." As budgets for Main Street improvement programs get slashed, that's probably a good thing to remember.

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