Each week, WAMU 88.5's Metro Connection reaches across D.C., Maryland and Virginia to gather the sounds and stories that capture the current events, culture and personalities driving the Washington region.
What do you get when you take a vacant storefront, mix in some local artists, pick a limited span of time, and open your doors? A "Temporium"! It's a new initiative by D.C.'s Office of Planning, to temporarily repurpose empty or under-utilized spaces to attract more people -- and, ideally, retailers -- to a neighborhood. A spot in Mount Pleasant is one of the first to be awarded a Temporium grant, and Jonna McKone paid a visit to this "visiting" shop.
D.C. resident Frank Kameny, 85, is known as a pioneer in the gay rights movement. After the U.S. Civil Service Commission fired him for his homosexuality in 1957, he made the first civil rights claim based on sexual orientation. These days Frank is struggling to pay the bills, so a young man in D.C. has kicked off a Facebook campaign to get the legendary underdog back on his feet. In a restaurant on "Frank Kameny Way," Rebecca Sheir talks with the two men about the campaign, and about Frank'...
Back in the day, coyotes were so low in the pecking order of predators, you'd be hard pressed to find one in this region. But with larger predators out of the picture, coyotes are moving in to the D.C. area. Sabri Ben-Achour takes a nature walk with a local wildlife biologist, to find out more...
The D.C.-based nonprofit GlobalGiving seeks to link grassroots causes with everyday donors. A new cause on the GlobalGiving Web site is the Pulling for the Underdog Fund, and Rebecca Sheir speaks with GlobalGiving's Donna Callejon about how this new fund -- and the entire GlobalGiving endeavor -- hopes to give local underdogs the resources they need to serve their communities.
In the past, The University of the District of Columbia has had trouble distinguishing itself from other colleges. It's faced serious funding woes, and at one point less than 10% of its students graduated within six years. But things are looking up for UDC. It recently created a community college, and enrollment has increased dramatically. Kavitha Cardoza talks with UDC president Allen Sessoms about the school's turnaround.
[Music: "School Days" by Al Green from Explores Your Mind]
Greyhounds have a long and storied history: the Egyptians worshiped them and people equated them with high social status in old England. Today, they are still bred as racing and hunting dogs, but once retired, their futures are as gray as their sleek coats. Lauren Hodges introduces us to Greyhound Welfare, a foster-home organization that works to place dogs in loving homes in the D.C. region.
[Music: "Black Dog" by The West 52nd Street Buddha Lounge Ensemble from Buddha Lounge:...
Rorschach Theatre has spent more than a decade bringing innovative, fantastical theater to Washington, D.C. But the company has faced its share of challenges and obstacles along the way, including a period of time "in exile." Rebecca Sheir attends a rehearsal of Rorschach's upcoming production, Voices Underwater, to learn what makes this ambitious underdog group tick.
If you tuned in to our "Dreams" show in January, you might remember David Edwards: an urban planner in Fairfax County, Va., in the 1960s and 70s. Edwards died last week, after a long battle with cancer. We remember him, by playing an excerpt of his interview with WAMU transportation reporter David Schultz.
[Music: "I'll Be Seeing You" by The Harry James Orchestra from Wine, Roses & Romantic Moods, Vol. 5 / "Underdog (in the Style of Kasabian)" by Ace Karaoke Productions from Ace...
On Feb. 20, 1839, Congress passed legislation barring the practice of dueling in the District of Columbia. Rebecca Sheir and historian Paul Dickson talk about the popularity of dueling in D.C.'s history, and tell tales of prominent figures who visited the Bladensburg Dueling Grounds to even up various scores -- often on the flimsiest of grounds -- by walking nine paces and firing at close range.
"Anacostia - The Web Series" is a soap opera home-grown in Southeast D.C. Like most soaps, it's about how we love, hate and, of course, get even with one another. But unlike most soap operas, it's about a place that's trying to rebuild its reputation. Emily Friedman gives us the lowdown on this internet sensation.
[Music: "Welcome to D.C." by Mambo Sauce from Go-Go Mix]
Sometimes, settling a score calls for a little legal intervention: in other words, the courts.
"She Said/She Said" -- a new play at The Catholic University of America -- focuses on a rather distinctive custody dispute. WAMU education reporter Kavitha Cardoza recently attended a rehearsal of the play, and she says while the piece weaves together theology, law and politics, at heart, it's a story about love, a break-up and a battle for a baby.
Matching longjohns. Kicklines in skis. Peeing on Santa's lap. Every family has these cringe-worthy moments, immortalized on film, that embody the particularly joyous brand of awkward that the holidays bring. And thanks to Mike Bender, co-author of Awkward Family Holiday Photos, the rest of us can rubberneck.
House and Senate negotiators are meeting to reconcile their two different versions of a new farm bill. If they don't reach agreement, the nation faces going over "the dairy cliff" – a reversion to 1949 farm policy that would cause a big spike in milk prices.
If your computer is infected with a virus or other forms of malware, disconnecting the machine from the Internet is one of the first steps security experts say you should take. But, someday, even physically separating your laptop from a network may not be enough to protect it from cyber evil-doers.
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