City Desk

Neighborhood News Roundup: Almost Too Cruel Edition

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

Neighborhood News RoundupHill East Problems: After a resounding swell of enthusiasm for the newly opened Crepes on the Corner (which included many messages like the following: "I'm here at Crepes on the Corner and it's wonderful – so much so that their "soft opening" today is already sold out, so they are closing early. This will insure that they'll have enough food for everyone tomorrow. Blessings to this delightful new business!"), a member of the New Hill East email list isn't so pleased with the business. "We were so excited to finally have a coffee and a crepe in our own neighborhood, and they are closed today! After what seems to have been a roaring opening, they posted a note today that due to a consequent hand injury to the chef, they will be closed until Tuesday. Best wishes for a quick recovery to the chef, but honestly, could the owner/manager/ anyone not have been there personally to serve coffee, or to tell the disappointed throngs in person? For entertainment, park yourself at the corner across from Crepes on the Corner, and watch the would-be crepe connoisseurs as they turn away, and walk slump-shouldered home," writes the member in an email titled "A load of crepe?" They continue, "Disappointed by CotC – one more time. It is almost too cruel. I'm sure I join others in wishing the owners of Crepe good health and successful business this year. But quickly, please. I just can't stand another cup of my home-brewed Folgers. Looking forward to supporting a great neighborhood business."

Pumpernickel Problems: "I have to say I think the place is so beyond dirty and I would never eat there. Why don't they just clean it up? It could be such a gem in our hood, but instead a dirty disappointment," writes a member of the Chevy Chase email list. This sparks quite the reaction from other list members, many of whom also complain about dirtiness, etc.: "I have hesitated to get into this. We like the occasional Ruben from them, but I agree that the place is dirty, the staff listening to some hip hop (which is not a prob for me, but actually sort of annoying), and the place seems very unclean"; "The food is decent and I like having them in the neighborhood. The place is not clean. The owners should attend to this. Quite basic, in my humble opinion"; "I have to agree with those who would like to see more attention to cleanliness. I was there the other day, there was not a big lunch crowd, there were several teen workers in the back with Bob, laughing and joking. Tables were dirty, but no one was making any effort to wipe them clean. The trash bin was filled to overflowing, but one fellow had time for a smoke break instead of taking care of it. I try not to look behind the counter." But one member plays defense, writing, "My kids are vegetarians and it's the only place in the area they can get delicious tofu versions of meat sandwiches. They love the food and I love the hole-in-wall, real people hang out here, feel of the place I so often miss in DC (compared to NYC where I grew up)."

Crestwood Problems: "Has anyone else noticed their lights dimming periodically over the last few days?" asks a member of the Crestwood email list. They continue, "I'm not sure whether this is potentially a problem with our house or a pepco problem that's affecting the whole neighborhood."

Solicitor Problems: "A woman from Environment America came to our door about 7:30 p.m. Thursday. Since she had my wife's name on her clipboard, I let them do most of the talking. But before I went back to the kitchen, I told the door-knocker there had been a lot of traffic on our [email list] about her; some people were afraid to open their doors with some unknown solicitor ringing the bell, thinking she must be some kind of nut, and others fearing for the solictor's safety. The woman told me she had received 15 or so warnings to be careful from Shepherd Park neighbors because of the recent crime spike," writes a member of the Shepherd Park email list. They add, "Environment America is a spinoff of U.S. PIRG, the Public Interest Research Group, which some people in Shepherd Park have supported quite generously in the past to look at the organization' s latest annual report. The woman was dressed for the weather, wearing foot-gloves with 'fingers' for each toe."

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