Tuesday, August 13, 2013


As a good citizen I take public transportation to work.  Living in Fairfax County, Virginia I use the Fairfax Connector to get to the Metro system.  To get to work I drive about a mile to a parking lot and then hop on a Fairfax Connector bus that takes me to the Metro station.  So over the last couple of months a flock of geese have decided to make the parking lot their home.   Geese apparently eat a lot which means they also leave tons of droppings.  The end result is they've turned the parking into a minefield.   Seriously - you cannot walk in a straight line without stepping in goose excrement.   It is nasty stuff and probably a major health hazard.   The funny thing is Fairfax Connector has route managers at the parking lot everyday, yet they've never bothered to do anything about it.  

Finally, out of abject frustration I emailed Fairfax Connector - so far my emails been forwarded to two different offices in the organization.   Wonder what the chances of something being done are?

update 9/4/2013
And why would I have expected anything else from this outfit ?    After receiving two emails telling me my original email had been forwarded on to another office ...  absolute silence.  Seriously, as a taxpayer all I can say is these guys are an embarrassment.   I suggest some remedial customer service training, or maybe we just subject the whole organization to some streamlining efficiencies.   Impressive work there Fairfax Connector.

Monday, August 12, 2013


When:  August 11, 2013
Where: Wolftrap, Vienna Virginia

BB King has been on my "bucket list" for years and though the man seems indestructible, at 87 (soon to be 88), he won't be here forever.  So King opened up the show and to be honest, he really didn't play all that much music.  His top notch backing band took up quite a bit of time and King himself spent about a quarter of the time vamping and talking to the crowd.   He's still an accomplish guitarist, but don't expect to hear anything nearly as polished as some of his past work.   That said, the man still have a wonderful voice - instantly recognizable.  Rough, roaring, ragged ...   a true treasure.  Beside, how can you not love a guy who takes the time to introduce every member of the band and his bus driver !!!

I saw Frampton about two years ago in a small local club (The Birchmere).  The last time I'd seen him was 1976 when he was touring in support of "Frampton Comes Alive".   Regardless, that small club show was great so I figured I'd give him a shot in a bigger arena (plus he recently got back the famed Gibson guitar).   While I missed the small show intimacy (this time around I was sitting on the lawn), Frampton and company was pretty good.   I wish he would have played a wider array of material, including some of his more recent material, but I guess you can't please all of us.  
The concert's biggest surprise/mystery was the appearance of Roger McGuinn.  Mind you, I'm a big Byrds fan, but McGunn just seemed totally out of place here.   Judging by the number of people who started packing up, I'm guessing 75% of the crowd didn't have a clue who McGuinn was, even when he played a couple of Byrds hits. Just a real strange guest to have brought along ...    

Saturday, August 3, 2013


24 hours later and I'm still steaming about this experience so I decided to put it on my blog.
So I'll admit this place has only been open for 10 days ...   clearly it'll take a little time to get into a groove and these guys clearly haven't gotten there (I have some doubts they ever will).   Even with that in mind, this was the worst dining experience I've had in years.   You'll have to judge if the 40 - 60 minute wait to get a table is going to be worth it.

- First be aware that parking is extremely limited.  We saw folks trolling the area for 5 to ten minutes.

- Great beer menu.  Unfortunately nothing on the menu is apparently available,  Seriously.  The first ten (yes 10) selections we made were not available.   I finally walked over to the bar to see what they actually had and then relayed the order to our server.   We literally spent 20 minutes on this part of the meal.

- Waiter was nice and friendly, but totally clueless,   The two 10 year olds with us had better insight into the menu than the waiter.

- It took 40 minutes for the pizzas to actually show up.   People that had come in after us got their orders before we did.   One of the managers noticed something was up and brought over garlic bread as a "peace offering".  We were also told that it was taking them about 30 minutes to cook a pizza.  interestingly at that point in time we'd been waiting 40 minutes,

- The first pizzas showed up (the one the kids ordered).  We were then told that there would be a delay on the second pizza because they'd made a mistake on the order - we ordered it without onions and it showed up with onions.   They re-did the order, but it took another 20 minutes,

- With two young kids with us, we basically gave up at this point asking that the pizzas be put in a box to go.   The manager offered us a 25% discount on the kids pizza which we politely declined.

- Even better, the bill included a beverage we hadn't ordered, but at this point we only had one goal - get out of this place without wasting any more of our time.

- By the way; after all of that, the food was just okay.  One of the 10 year olds told us he'd rather have Papa Johns.  I won't go that far, but it was just okay - not something I would spend two hours waiting for.

Here's the really sad part.  We've been to three other Mellow Mushrooms and each was great.  We were actually excited to hear that one was opening up in Herndon.  Maybe because those prior experiences were so good, this was a complete and thorough disappointment.   The only reason I gave it a star is that's the minimum requirement to upload a review.   My suggestion - maybe wait another six months and try them, or hold out for the one in Savannah, or the one in Charlottesville.