Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Blizzard of '09

How have you made out with the big blizzard of 2009? Nice that it happened over the weekend, so we could get some play time in along with the shoveling!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Get busy Hon, show yer local support!

The blogging is light, but we're still here. I say "we" but I seem to have lost some of my regular contributors over the past year. So let me again put out this invitation to all Harford Road, Hon readers: if you'd like to contribute -- even just occasionally! -- please drop me a line at pookyshoehorn at gmail dot com.

Now on to the good stuff! On December 1 I went to the Westfield Neighborhood Improvement Association holiday party, held at The Parkside Fine Food & Spirits down Harford Road. A lovely time was had by all -- and by "all" I mean the 15 or so people who showed up. If you didn't make it, you missed some great conversation, great food, and great beer.

One thing that really struck me during several conversations was that we really do have a ton of stuff going on in Hamilton these days, and I for one, rarely take advantage of them the way that I should. This weekend promises to be full of opportunities to support local businesses and artists. So let's start reminding each other of what's so great about where we live:

Friday, December 4 – First Friday!
  • 5 – 7 pm Holiday Happy Hour at the Chameleon Café (4341 Harford Road) and Holiday Tree Lighting outside with a sing-along by several local talents.
  • 6 – 9 pm Hamilton Gallery (2927 Hamilton Avenue) featuring work by local artists.
  • 7 pm EggNOGLI at the HAC, (5440 Harford Road, 2nd floor) – enter next to the Hamilton Gallery.
But Wait!! There's More!

Guess who's coming to Hamilton on Saturday, hon?

Saturday, December 5

12 noon Santa arrives in a motorcycle side car, strolls on Main Street in Hamilton making his way to The Heart of Hamilton (5523 Harford Road) to pick up letters written to him and take advantage of the 20% shopping discount.

1:30 pm Santa then works his way to Lauraville and stops to visit residents at the Harford Gardens Care & Rehab Center at 4700 Harford Road

2 pm Join Santa at the Red Canoe Bookstore Café (4337 Harford Road) for some hot spiced cider, discount coupon and to collect more letters for Santa. While you’re there pick up your discount holiday shopping coupon for Studio C Jewelry, on the 2nd Floor of the Red Canoe.

2:30 pm Santa will end his day at The Parkside Fine Food & Spirits (4709 Harford Road) for Holiday Photos with Santa. Photos by Soft Touch Photography by Cynthia for a nominal fee.

7 pm Top off your off your day with the Donovan Fund classic Christmas musical Meet Me in St. Louis showing at the Little Theater in Lauraville (4321 Harford Road, 2nd floor). All seats must be reserved due to limited seating. Call Chris Muldowney to reserve at 410-366-1980 x271. After the film a discussion is facilitated by Film Professor and Filmmaker, Chris Reed. For information on Donovan Fund and Film series www.fcsmd.org/events/donovan.htm

Many thanks to the wonderful Hamilton Lauraville Baltimore Main Street News for gathering this information!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Almost time to defrost the turkey, hon!

Sorry I've been light on the posting lately. I hope in the meantime you've visited some of the great blogs listed to the right. One of my regular reads is Coconut & Lime, written by one of our neighbors Rachel Rappaport. She is always cooking up something good in the kitchen, and with Thanksgiving coming up, we have the mother of all meals quickly upon us.

There are lots of great recipes over at Coconut & Lime, but this one caught my eye:

Ginger Lime Spiked Cranberry Sauce

And I am very tempted to try this one out on my family in Northern Virginia:

Thanksgiving Sauerkraut

What do you think?

Thursday, November 5, 2009

An alternative to the 2-party system

Everyone complains about politics, and especially about the restrictions of a 2-party system. Well, it doesn't have to be that way, ya know. For instance, the Green Party is growing from the ground up (if you'll pardon the pun), and with every local win, the party becomes a more viable option for higher-up offices.

Quit yer complainin' and do something ....

Monday, October 12, 2009

Walnuts are your friends, hon!

So many of us have a goldmine out back in our large black walnut trees towering over our homes and cars. Well, one person's goldmine is another's autobody nightmare, but still .... If you have priced black walnuts at the store recently, you understand what I mean about a goldmine.

One of our local residents has written a wonderful article on How to Harvest Black Walnuts, which explains the process very clearly. I think this year I may actually do it -- I sense some baking projects coming along soon ....

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Big Brother is Watchin' You Speed, Hon!

From the always informative blog, Baltimore Crime:
From the Roland Park newsletter. The Sun also has a map, in case you're a visual learner. Throughout October, warnings will be issued to those caught speeding on film. After that, $40 tickets will be issued.

1 — 33rd Street, EB @ The Alameda
2 — The Alameda SB @ 33rd Street
3 — Caton Avenue NB @ Benson Avenue
4 — Caton Avenue SB @ Benson Avenue
5 — Liberty Heights Avenue EB @ Hillsdale Road
6 — Liberty Heights Avenue WB @ Hillsdale Road
7 — Harford Road NB @ The Alameda
8 — Edmondson Avenue EB @ Cooks Lane
9 — Edmondson Avenue EB @ Woodridge Road
10 — Edmondson Avenue WB @ Woodridge Road
11 — Frederick Avenue EB @ Catherine Street
12 — Harford Road NB @ Christopher Avenue
13 — MLK Jr. Boulevard SB @ Pratt Street
14 — Franklin Street WB @ Pulaski
15 — Harford Road NB @ Rosalie Avenue
16 — Walther Avenue NB @ Glenmore Avenue
17 — Wilkens Avenue EB @ Desoto Road
18 — Cold Spring Lane WB @ Hillen Road
19 — Cold Spring Lane WB @ Loch Raven Boulevard
20 — Sinclair Lane WB @ Moravia Road
21 — Sinclair Lane EB @ Shannon Drive
22 — Sinclair Lane WB @ Shannon Drive
23 — Orleans Street EB @ Linwood Street
24 — Eastern Avenue EB @ Kane Street
25 — Hillen Road SB @ Argonne Drive
26 — Liberty Heights Avenue NB @ Dukeland Street
27 — North Avenue WB @ Howard Street
28 — Northern Parkway WB @ Springlake Way
29 — Northern Parkway WB @ Waverly Way
30 — Northern Parkway EB @ Greenspring Avenue
31 — Northern Parkway WB @ Greenspring Avenue
32 — Charles Street SB @ Lake Avenue
33 — Reisterstown Road SB @ Fallstaff Road
34 — Cold Spring Lane EB @ Tamarind Road
35 — Wilkens Avenue EB @ Pine Heights Avenue
36 — Erdman Avenue EB @ Macon Street
37 — Erdman Avenue WB @ Macon Street
38 — Madison Street WB @ Caroline Street
39 — Franklin Street WB @ Cathedral Street
40 — Orleans Street EB @ Gay Street
41 — Park Heights Avenue NB @ Violet Avenue
42 — Patapsco Avenue WB @ 4th Street
43 — Perring Parkway SB @ Belvedere Avenue
44 — Pulaski Highway EB @ Monument Street
45 — Northern Parkway WB @ Park Heights
46 — Park Heights Avenue NB @ Hayward Avenue
47 — Park Heights Avenue SB @ Hayward Avenue
48 — Cold Spring Lane EB @ Roland Avenue
49 — MLK Jr. Boulevard NB @ Washington
50 — Lombard Street WB @ Gay Street
51 — Harford Road SB @ Walther Avenue

Monday, October 5, 2009

Wildlife in the Neighborhood

Spotted recently in Westfield: a Peregrine Falcon:

Unfortunately, we did not get a picture of ours, this photo is from BirdChannel.com. What wildlife have you seen recently?

Deal of the Week

At least, according to Elizabeth Large:
The Deal of the Week
Where: Clementine, 5402 Harford Road, Hamilton

The Deal: Taco Night. Three pork or beef tacos, rice and beans for $10

When: Every Tuesday night, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Call: 410-444-1497
I must confess that I have not been to Clementine's yet. With times being tough and all that, the prices scare me off a little bit. And three tacos, rice and beans for $10 does not actually strike me as much of a "deal," but maybe it is cheap enough to finally entice me there ....

Thursday, October 1, 2009

A Different Perspective

Even if you don't register and vote in The Mobbies Awards (but please do!), I encourage you to take a little time to visit some of the many sites listed there. There are other neighborhood blogs, and there are statewide news sites -- all are worth a glance. One that I like to visit often is Investigative Voice. The writers there really do dig below the headlines and write about stories that the mainstream media ignores. And they often write from an angle that is much more thought-provoking than anything else. For example this post:

RAFAEL ALVAREZ: THE ALLEY HOUSE - All that is not given away is lost

This is a story about dancing for nickels.

Of all the be bop, doo wop and hip hop crazes to come along – the Frug, the Freak, and the Flintstone Flop – my favorite is the Median Strip Shuffle.

They’re doing it all over Crabtown, especially during rush hour when traffic stops for the light: on Russell Street just before Ravens Stadium; all along Northern Parkway; at the on-ramps to Interstate 95; up and down York Road and pretty much anywhere there’s enough room to limp past a line cars with a solicitation scrawled on cardboard.

The secret to the shuffle is exaggerating the extent of what may or may not be wrong with you to elicit enough sympathy (empathy is asking too much of people headed to jobs they both loathe and need) for a few sticky coins from the cup holder. For my nickel, the champion of this sad song-and-dance was a homeless heroin addict named Raoul, the namesake of a Puerto Rican barber who gave me my first haircut in Baltimore Highlands in the early 1960s.

Somewhere, my folks have home movies of the event, during which I cried. Raoul Jr. was a smaller version of his old man, with whom he once worked side-by-side barber chairs. Raoul Sr. cemented the loyalty of my father by not charging for haircuts when Dad and the Seafarers International Union were on strike against local tugboat companies in 1966.

The affable barber with the pencil-thin moustache forfeited the friendship a quarter-century later by not paying his respects when my grandfather died. How young Raoul went from cutting hair on Baltimore Annapolis Boulevard to living on the streets downtown, I don’t know. Like many tragic descents, I imagine it was by degrees.

About 15 years ago, I saw him doing a Super Shuffle – a rhythmic, crippled gait ornamented with tics and tremors – near the corner of Charles and Fayette. Though we hadn’t seen each other in decades, and never outside the barbershop, Raoul remembered me. I bought him coffee and didn’t mention that he was now walking as well as anyone else on the street.

Please read the rest of this post here.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

'Cause it's a Democracy!

Yes, that's why you get to vote on stuff all the time in America. And now, you can even vote for your fave neighborhood blog to win one of the prestigious "Mobbie" awards from the Baltimore Sun:

Click here to vote for my blog ... early and often

That's right: Vote early, and vote often! (Well, at least once a day.)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Baltimore? Or the Wild Wild West?

I've lived in Westfield for 6 years, and in and around Baltimore City for the past 11, and I have never been surrounded by so much violent crime as we've had in the past couple of weeks. And before moving here, I lived in Washington, DC, so yes, I know what gunshots sound like, and I know that when lots of people live in close proximity (i.e., in the city), there will be crime, and some of it will be violent.

A couple of weeks ago we arrived home at about 9:30 Sunday night to find our street blocked off while police searched for an armed suspect who had just shot someone at the corner of Old Harford & Harford. (He was caught in the alley behind Royston and Christopher, which is apparently where the confusion about the location of the shooting stems from.)

Well, we all move on with our lives. But the violence continues. Yesterday an off-duty police officer shot an armed robber who had entered his home. I heard Ed Norris this morning gleefully saying "He messed with the wrong guy! Ha ha!" And I understand the satisfaction of a criminal getting immediate repercussion for his crime.

But I find particularly disturbing in this story the report that as the robber was running down the street, from Glenarm to White Ave., the police officer was chasing him and firing his gun. (In fact, Jayne Miller's report had an eyewitness saying the robber had dropped his gun and had his hands raised, saying "I'm sorry, man!" Will this be investigated?) Of course I understand wanting to catch the guy, but at some point isn't the public's safety more important? The report says the suspect was shot "multiple times." Wasn't once or twice enough?

And this morning we have this story:

Hopkins student kills intruder with samurai sword, police say

Which again is being met with comments of "Good for him!" and "One less criminal!"

And again, I think to myself, "What kind of world do I live in?" Have we not evolved from the gunslingers of the old west? There was no law and order, no police force, in those days, and everyone armed themselves for safety. Is that what Baltimore City is gleefully becoming? Are you happy about citizens taking the law into their own hands?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Copters, Copters, Everywhere!

Does anyone have any idea why a police helicopter was flying over our neighborhood for almost 45 minutes on Sunday, September 13th? 'Cause we called the Northeast District to find out and the officer who answered said "I don't know if there's anything going on -- I'm at the desk."


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

We awoke last night -- actually it was about 2:30 am today -- to a load crack, almost like lightening, accompanied by a bright flash of light. Did anyone else hear or see this? If it was lightening, it was very strange because there were no more sounds and no other signs of a storm.

Very strange, indeed ....

Monday, August 24, 2009

Hamilton-Lauraville Tuesday Market: Been there yet?

I can't believe that I have yet to make it to the Hamilton-Lauraville Tuesday Market, but it's that "Tuesday" part that makes it tough for me. I'm a big fan of the Waverly Market on Saturdays and the one under 83 on Sundays. School nights are not good for going anywhere.

I am hoping this may be the week, though. (Especially after seeing "Julie & Julia"on Sunday!)

Here's a description from the Harbel Calendar:
"Come enjoy the craft, flower, and food vendors at this community based farmers market. Two of the vendors providing fresh local meat, fruits, and vegetables are:

Ferguson Family Farm – located in Baltimore County, MD offering naturally raised Berkshire pork using sustainable agricultural practices, such as rotating pastures and not using growth hormones or antibiotics.

Tuckey’s Mountain Grown Berries, Fruits and Vegetables - from just 15 miles north west of historic Gettysburg, PA, offering a full line of berries, fruits, vegetables, cut flowers, jams and jellies and fresh fruit pies."
Have you been there yet? What are your thoughts?

photo from a great blog: Hamilton Crop Circle

Friday, August 21, 2009

Green Post: Farmers' Market at the White House?

We try to stay out of politics here (most of the time), so please don't pile on this as a political post. This is for all the gardeners out there, and for anyone who is concerned about food -- sustainability, diet, farmers, the whole thing. I think this is great:

Obama wants to set up White House farmers market

President Obama said on Thursday that he and the First Lady are looking into setting up a farmers market just outside the White House, which might sell food from the White House garden or from local farmers. The president said it could give the city of Washington, D.C., “more access to good, fresh food, but it also is this enormous potential revenue-maker for local farmers in the area.”

Read the rest of the article here.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Just an FYI

I don't want to get all "Ah! Crime in the neighborhood" here, but I thought this was worth noting from today's Police Blotter:
Northeastern Baltimore
Robbery A boy, 15, was standing outside a snowball stand at Woodlea Avenue and Walther Boulevard about 7:40 p.m. Tuesday when he was struck in the face by two other teenage boys who robbed him of his cell phone. The crew of a city police helicopter was over the crime scene moments later and spotted a youth fitting the description of one of the robbers walking about two blocks away. Ground units arrested him. A short time later, police arrested the second suspect nearby. Police said the victim's cell phone was not recovered.
'Cause if it's not safe to buy a snowball at the Walther Boulevard stand anymore, then we're in trouble ....

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Surfing around the Baltimore Internets

Those of you who know me, know that I am about the least "crafty" person around. but that doesn't mean I don't admire those who have a talent for this thing called "craft." So you may be interested in this Baltimore blog that I just stumbled across:
Baltimore etsy street team

And "crafts" often lead to "gifts," which can be found in a new store called "The Heart of Hamilton." You can read more about it and other goings-on in Hamilton:
Hamilton-Lauraville Main Street News

Find a recipe for "some seriously delicious ice cream":
Coconut & Lime

And finally, let's get ready for some football!
Redskins blog
(hey -- what can I say?)

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Chickens have come home to roost -- and it's a good thing!

I stumbled across this video over at the Baltimore Sun website, and thought it was pretty interesting. I'm on a personal quest to think and rethink about where my food comes from and the impacts of my food choices. As you may know, Hamilton used to be truck farming land many years ago. That's why there are still some old original farmhouses mixed in among the cape cods and bungalows in our neighborhoods. So I think it's really interesting that people are not only growing more and more vegetables in their backyards, but even raising chickens:

Friday, June 12, 2009

Fritz the Dog Says ...

What are you up to this weekend?

One of the reasons posting has been so light here at Harford Road Hon is that we're all so busy with Spring projects (and some Spring play, as well!). On our agenda this weekend: continue the stucco patching on the foundation, weed the vegetable garden, grilling at least one meal, visit at least one farmer's market, a trip somewhere -- will it be the beach or the mountains?

How about you? What's up with you this weekend?

Friday, May 15, 2009

Tuesday Market

Beginning June 2, Hamilton Lauraville Main Street will host a weekly market at 4500 Harford Road – a formerly abandoned filling station across the street from the Safeway supermarket. Tuesday Market Connection will continue every Tuesday, from 4 -8 p.m. through October, and feature local food vendors, native plants, crafts, live music and more. To promote the market, vendor spaces will cost $5 for the first two weeks. After that, the cost per space will range between $15 and $25.


Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Outdoor Happy Hour!

At Chameleon Cafe. $2 glasses of wine on the outdoor patio 5-7pm Tues-Sat.

It's Farmers' Market Time!

Today's Baltimore Sun ran an article called "13 strategies for shopping a farmers market," which has some good -- although generic -- information about how to shop at Farmers' Markets. (I guess I shouldn't be surprised, since the Sun fired half its staff and now relies on wire services for articles like this, rather than having a local author write them ....)

Some of the tips seem a bit obsessive to me, but here are a few I absolutely agree with:
#4 Bring a cloth bag that has plenty of room and can hang over your shoulder. For frozen meat or delicate greens, consider an insulated bag.

#5 Get to the market early if you want the best pick of the market.

#7 If you have time, walk the market once through before you purchase so you can get an overview of the offerings.

#10 Bring cash, "especially ones and $5 bills."
Now, although the Baltimore Sun couldn't be bothered to run a list of local Farmers Markets, we here at your local neighborhood blog are happy to do so:

Here's a link for the State Directory of Farmers' Markets. Scroll down to Baltimore City and you'll see there are plenty in the City and in Baltimore County, too.

The Market in Waverly is open year round, and they have their own website: 32nd Street Farmers Market.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Greater Lauraville Home & Garden Tour

The Greater Lauraville Home & Garden Tour will be offered on June 13th from 11am to 3pm. There will be 5-7 houses on the tour, and HNI home renovations will be the highlight. However, several houses on the Tour will be offering exceptional gardens as well as creative use of space, family-friendly renovations, and artistic interior design. Tickets will be sold in advance for $7.50 and $10 the day of the event. Call the Greater Lauraville office at 410-444-9188 to purchase them. Posters will be on sale again this year for $5.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Herring Run Park Clean-Up Tomorrow!

Herring Run Park Clean-Up

Saturday, April 4, 2009
9-12 AM

Four Sites:
Hall Spring(entrance near Harford and Argonne Drive)
Belair Road(between Parkside Drive and Chesterfield)
Mannasota Ave(at Shannon Drive)
Sinclair Lane(at Shannon Drive)

As an added incentive, the American Chemistry Society will be on hand at Hall Spring and will analyze soil samples for free for the first 50 neighbors who are interested in checking out the health of their yard/garden.

Wear old clothes and sturdy shoes.
Gloves, bags & shovels provided.

For more information contact:
Ashley Traut (410) 254-1577

Have you planted your lettuce yet?

Notice that on the blogroll to the right on this page, I've added a new category of links called "Gardener's Corner." At our house, we're busily planning the spring crops and ornamentals, and I've spoken with many other folks in our neighborhood who are either long-time or first-time gardeners -- all drooling over their seed catalogues. Well, even us "old-timers" know that you can always learn a new trick from another gardener, so I thought I'd pass along these links.

Feel free to suggest other blogs or websites that you think would be interesting to your fellow Harford Hon-ers. First off, I'd suggest you click on over to My B'More Backyard Project, which is a new blog by one of our neighbors down the road in Lauraville. If you don't already have plans to start a garden this year, I'll bet you'll be inspired by the descriptions and photos at Mr. Banks' site.

And remember, even though April in Westfield sometimes feels like nothing more than sump pump season, we need need the rain for our plants! mmmmm! Lettuce!

Monday, March 30, 2009

For the love of Chok Chai!

As if I needed a reminder that independent and local is the way to dine, we recently ate at two chains (PF Chang’s and Bahama Breeze) that confirmed this thought. While neither meal was “bad,” neither one was particularly outstanding, either.

But you know what meal was outstanding? Saturday night’s carry out from Chok Chai! Which is what makes it all the more worrisome to have heard that they are currently struggling for business. You may remember that last year the restaurant moved from its original location on Harford Road just south of Northern Parkway, to about 2 blocks above Northern Parkway. It took a few months to reopen in their new and improved location, and apparently they haven’t recovered all of their customers yet.

I know there are some loyal Harford Road Hon readers who are Chok Chai fans, and I implore you to give them some business and show them some love. The owners/chefs are struggling and losing money each week. The economy, the move, who knows why. Certainly not the food, which is outstanding and a good value, too. I went for comfort food on Saturday, as I slowly watched my NCAA winnings fading away. Pad thai and Tom yum soup – and a heart-shaped carrot giving me love.

If you haven’t tried Chok Chai before, I encourage you to walk – no, run! – there straightaway.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

spring in Hamilton

killer captured?

It seems they may have caught the person who killed Mr. Dan. Read about it here.

Grind-On Cafe

Grind-On Cafe (4607 Harford Road) was named by Elizabeth Large of the Sun as one of the top 10 coffee shops in the city! Not bad for a place that has been open less than a year.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Good News from down the Road, Hon!

From a great local blog, Hamilton-Lauraville Main Street News, comes this story:
Reading Grant Awarded to Red Canoe Bookstore

Red Canoe is pleased to announce the award of a grant from Parks and People. The purpose of the grant is to spend a year reading with a diverse group of middle school age children from the Lauraville and Belair Edison corridors. During the spring, summer and fall participants will meet once a week to read in Herring Run Park.

And there is more! The grant covers the cost of showing in the park the movie made from the book and it covers the cost of the soda and pizza to munch on while watching the movie. With the colder weather, the movies will be shown at the 4321 Harford Road movie house.

The Red Canoe's mission has always been to bring the power of literacy to building community. The award of this grant is fundamental to the goals of partnering children with the good stewardship of the great community resource that Herring Run Park is, as well as developing a genuine love of reading.

For more information, please contact Nicole at:

Red Canoe Bookstore Cafe
Well done, Red Canoe!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Stabbing: A NE Baltimore Trend?

I'm no Sherlock Holmes, but I do find it interesting that in the last 6 months, there have been 4 murders committed along the Harford Road corridor between Hamilton Avenue and Taylor Avenue, and 3 of them have been stabbings. (Indicated in black on this map.)

The police recently sent out flyers for a "Person of Interest" in the killing of our Westfield member, Daniel Hoeck. Please download the .pdf file by clicking here to vist the WNIA website.

Also, don't forget that the next WNIA meeting will be next Tuesday, March 3rd, at the Holiday House, at 7:30 pm.

This map is from the Baltimore Sun, but you can also look up crimes at SpotCrime.com. You will see that although the entire city is struggling with crime and murder, stabbing deaths are relatively rare. So double check the locks, keep an eye out for your neighbors, and turn the porch light on ....

Monday, February 16, 2009

Glenoak Murder: No Leads?

Thanks to Harford Road Hon Heather for posting the story over the weekend about the terrible events of this last week. So far, there hasn't been much news coverage, and as time goes on, it will become even less interesting to the media, I'm afraid. There is one mention of this murder in today's Baltimore Sun, but I have a feeling the reporters are ready to move on to the next crime scene:
Neighbors were still reeling from the death of Daniel Lee Hoeck, a recipient of two Purple Hearts and identified by police yesterday as the man found fatally stabbed in his home Thursday afternoon. On his street, he was known as "Mr. Dan," a friendly man who could often be seen taking walks and feeding neighbors' dogs but who in recent years had been less visible as his health declined.
There has been discussion on the Westfield Wire about getting the word out to the neighborhood about the crime, and how to help police solve the crime. Last summer there were several shootings in the Federal Hill neighborhood. You had better believe those residents gave the police an earful and talked to reporters about it. I don't know if those crimes were eventually solved, but they sure had a lot more police officers patrolling the area as a result of the neighborhood involvement.

So have at it -- comments are open ....

Saturday, February 14, 2009

troubling story of violent death in our neighborhood

My boyfriend just discovered this story of a man killed inside his own home in the 6100 block of Glenoak.

Friday, January 30, 2009

RecycleMORE BaltiMORE

It would be nice if the City would publicize this kind of thing a little more, but eh, whatever. We'll do our civic duty and tell you about some good news for all of us. The acceptable items list for recycling has been expanded, making it even easier to send your trash to be recycled instead of taking up space in the landfill. Most notably:

To be included in your curbside single stream recycling bin—January 2009:
  • Wide-mouth plastic containers used for margarine, yogurt, cottage cheese, mayonnaise and sour cream.
  • Empty prescription bottles (lids and caps do not need to be removed)
  • Plastic drinking cups
  • Aluminum foil and aluminum pie pans
  • Clean milk and juice cartons
These can now be included with your usual recycling, which already includes:

Acceptable Recycling Material:

  • Clean paper - all colors and types. - This includes catalogs, magazines, junk mail, newspapers and non-metallic wrapping paper Cardboard and paperboard boxes (including cereal boxes without liners and frozen food packaging)
  • Books (including paperbacks, textbooks and hardbacks)
  • Aerosol Cans (empty)
  • Glass containers such as jars and bottles
  • Metal food and beverage containers
  • Narrow-neck plastic containers (other than for motor oil) which carry codes 1 through 7 on the bottom.
You can find out more at the Baltimore City DPW Recycling website.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Pedaling down Harford Road?

There's been a lot of chatter on the WNIA listserv about the newest addition to the world of Hamilton restaurants, "50's Diner." So far the reviews are mostly positive, although there is one suspect upset stomach issue -- which may be a virus after all -- and the open hours seem a little inconsistent. I haven't been there yet, but what impresses me the most about this news is the enthusiasm of the neighborhood to try out yet another new restaurant.

I'm really looking ahead to the spring. The heart of Hamilton seems just a little out of walking distance (especially the uphill trip back home!), but the newly paved street seems perfect for a bicycle. I've lived in other cities where I rode my bike around town, and because I now have an hour long drive each to work, I would love to be able to give my car a break and pedal down to the CVS, the Hamilton Tavern, the bank, the yoga studio, etc., etc.

But bicycles don't seem to be part of the culture here in Northeast Baltimore (except for that guy I pass sometimes in the morning on Walther Blvd at 6:30 am who appears to be riding to work). I'm wondering what you all think about bicycling in our neighborhood. Do you do it? Where do you park your bike? Do drivers respect you? Harass you? See you?

Let me know in the comments section.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

We're a democracy here, too

The voting booth is closed here at Harford Road, Hon, and the results have been tallied. First let me say that I am slightly disappointed that so few readers took the time to vote, because there are many more of you on the site meter. But for whatever reason, only a few of you voted. Well, that's your right, too.

And t certainly makes it easy to count the votes! The results are as follows: 50% Love the new design; 30% Hate it and want the old one back; 20% couldn't care less.

So with apologies to the 30% who hate it, we're going to stay with the new look. I promise to do some tweaking as possible and improve on what we have at the moment as much as I can within the confines of blogger.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Request for Photos

Hey there Westfieldians -- I know that some of you lurk here, too shy to post or comment. Or perhaps you even think that you don't have anything worth writing about -- that's just silly! Look at the piffle I post -- and yet you still come back, don't you?

So how about some photos? When you take your jog through the neighborhood, or walk the dog to the park, or amble up to the 7-11 for smokes -- take your camera with you. We have lots of photo-worthy sights in our neighborhood, down every alley and up every street.

Then, just email your photos to me at pookyshoehorn@gmail.com and I'll take care of the rest. You can even stay completely anonymous, if you'd like.

C'mon, You know you wanna ....

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Legum's New Line

Passing along a great new blog covering Maryland politics: Legum's New Line. I'm always happy to have new sources of information, and hope you will enjoy this new blog as well.

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Wilds of Westfield: Vulpes vulpes

It's been a while since we wrote about wildlife in our neighborhood, but Fritz the Dog and I had a wonderful siting the other night. I didn't get a photo, because it was quite unexpected, and rather dark, too. But the fellow (or gal) we saw looked like this:

This little furry friend was was a red fox (Vulpes vulpes), getting a drink from our fishpond out back when we stepped outside for a last trip before heading to bed. Furry friend was as surprised to see us as we were to see him/her. He/she slipped through the picket fence and into the alley before Fritz even realized an intruder was at the edge of the yard.

Much barking ensued!

Then what a beautiful sight it was to see this animal trotting away down the alley behind our house. But there was one last stop and we were given this very look in the photo above. Just too cool for school, was this one!

And before anyone gets worried about a fox in the neighborhood, let me assure you that this creature was doing exactly what it should be doing: out at night (nocturnal), fearful of humans and dogs (not a threat), and please don't forget: these guys eat mice and rats! (Cats are way too much trouble for them, if that's what you are thinking ....)

We have a lot of green space in our neighborhood, and I for one enjoy seeing the diverse wildlife that lives here.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

We're One Degree Away from Greatness!

One of our very own contributors here at Harford Road, Hon has been nominated as a finalist in the 2008 Weblog Awards! Rachel of Coconut & Lime would never brag, but we're proud to let you know that she both blogs here and lives here.

So go show some bloggy love and vote for Coconut & Lime for the Best Food Blog. You can vote once every 24 hours. (Once from each computer, that is. Wink wink. Nudge nudge!)

Congratulations, Rachel!

$40,000 for Handmade Rugs?

I'm all for style, but this story in yesterday's Baltimore Sun is pretty unbelievable, given the state of our economy:
Fancy new threads for State House

From its new perch on the wall of an ornate State House meeting room, the recently unveiled portrait of former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. can finally gaze down on the $37,500 rug he ordered in early 2006.

The handmade custom piece from India - featuring an 8-foot-in-diameter replica of the Maryland seal - is one of several lush touches to a $10 million renovation receiving its de facto unveiling today. Less visible will be the rich red fabric that covers faded wallpaper in Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller's inner office - part of a separate $10,000 job paid for with Senate funds, according to Miller's chief of staff, Vicki Gruber.
As a furloughed State employee, maybe I'll take road trip on one of those days when I don't get paid, and go look at the "lush touches to a $10 million renovation." It's o.k. that State employees don't get paid, as long as our politicians can enjoy "lush" accommodations ....