The Needle: R. Kelly Edition
Trapped in the Capitol: Capitol Hill isn't known for having the liveliest nightlife, but that could change soon. Everyone's favorite R&B crooner/successful defendant R. Kelly apparently wants to rent an apartment in the neighborhood soon, according to a post he put on Facebook soliciting advice for where to find a one-bedroom. We look forward to hearing his thoughts on whether Capital BikeShare should be able to put a station in Lincoln Park. And to the inevitable ballad that results from his stay in our midst. -2 UPDATE: An R. Kelly rep says this story isn't true, which shifts it into negative territory for the Needle.
Bigger Booze Ban: Summer Friday evenings at the National Sculpture Garden have long featured two complimentary activities—listening to jazz, and surreptitiously sharing a bottle of wine smuggled in to the concert. The second activity no longer seems to go with the first so well. National Gallery officials say they've tightened up their security to keep alcohol out—unless the alcohol is bought from their own on-site vendors, of course. Which is a shame; fighting the hordes of tourists on the Mall is tough without a glass or four of wine to fortify you. -2
Lactating on Patrol: In the ongoing debate over whether the District has enough police officers to keep crime low, the latest move by Metropolitan Police Department officials might be read as a sign—MPD is ordering cops who are breastfeeding their kids out on the street, instead of letting them draw desk duty so they're near a lactation lounge where they can easily pump milk. The Fraternal Order of Police says the body armor cops are required to wear on duty outside stations is a particular burden for breastfeeding officers. But the fight gives us a new get-rich-quick scheme: Invent body armor that affixes to nursing bras. -1
Maryland, Buy Maryland: Everyone in the D.C. area knows Maryland crabs are superior to crustaceans from any other part of the world; everyone in the D.C. area also knows not every place serving blue crab is serving the local variety. A new law in the Old Line State (which, surprisingly, has not yet changed its nickname to the Old Bay State) aims to change that: Any food sold in Maryland that's advertised as "local" must also indicate its state of origin. No word yet on whether this will mean less food from out of the area, or just less food advertising itself as "local." +1
Friday's Needle rating: 48 Today's score: -2 Today's Needle rating: 46