City Desk

The Needle: Orange Edition

Orange You Glad You Voted For Orange: The election many of you didn't realize was happening is now over, and Vincent Orange is—once again—a member of the D.C. Council. Sure, voter turnout was under 10 percent, and sure, 71 percent of ballots were cast for someone besides Orange. That doesn't matter! What matters is the next round of elections will be upon us in only about 51 weeks. Which means we get to start the whole thing all over again, like, yesterday. +1

No Motorcade For You: The next time Charlie Sheen and/or the New York Rangers find themselves in town, they'll have to wait at red lights like the rest of us. Metropolitan Police Department officials have issued new regulations making clear what should have been obvious from the outset: There's no reason for celebrities to zip around town just because they're on TV. There does still seem to be some confusion over whether Chief Cathy Lanier knew the department was providing escorts for celebrities in the first place at all, which means Sheen is probably still winning. +2

Jobs For All: According to economists, the recession ended a long time ago. Your experience may be different, of course—but a new report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics has signs of hope, even so. Unemployment in the D.C. metro region dipped to 5.8 percent in March, down from 6.6 percent the year before. Some sectors did better than others; there were 800 fewer financial services jobs, while there were 10,100 more government jobs. Cue Tea Party whining! +2

Pretty Fucked: There's something inherently unsatisfying about getting system status updates directly from Metro—for one, there are so many of them, usually bad, but for another, the official versions don't give proper voice to the existential doom riding the subway can generate in these days of deferred maintenance and strapped budgets. Fortunately, a new website—whose name, How Fucked is Metro, gets right to the point—is there. Clicking for an update shows, helpfully, that the Green line to Greenbelt "isn't fucked." Designer Joey Brunelle says he also built a polite version for people whose offices would look askance at the original, but how much fucking fun is that? +2

Yesterday's Needle rating: 61 Today's score: +7 Today's Needle rating: 68

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