May 3, 2011
What are you going to do with dear old Mom? Things sure got a whole lot easier for me since my brother married a woman who hosts an annual multiple famly annual Mother's Day party and barbecue. If I didn't have that to fall back on, I'd consider one of these Mother's Day options. On Saturday and Sunday, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Boordy Vineyards is inviting families to picnic on their sprawling grounds. The cost is $12 for adults, $10 for teens and $5 for children 2 to 12. There will be music by Ellis Woodward and Company; wine tasting; and tours of the vineyard.
April 4, 2011
The sign looms large, guarding I-395 as the traffic rolls past Baltimore's football and baseball stadiums. "This is Birdland," it proclaims in giant letters. The man beside the slogan, with a bat clamped over his shoulders, looks deadly serious in his mission to make Baltimore a baseball town once more. That guy, Orioles manager Buck Showalter, has embraced his quest to stir the kind of baseball passion which overwhelmed area fans in 1983 or 1997. "I think we probably have a lot of people kind of sitting there in wait-and-see [mode]
February 1, 2011
If you want to buy a chicken, you can get one at the U.S. 1 Flea Market this weekend. Not the skinned, boned and shrink-wrapped kind but the real cluck, in three colors, no less. Of course the handcrafted lizard boots dyed the colors of red clay and scorching yellow would put any hen to shame, despite her colorful plumage. Those who pass by the buzzing indoor/outdoor market on weekends don't know what they're missing. Like boots from El Reparo Western Wear. For 16 years, this little shop in the southwest indoor corner of the market has outfitted shoppers with colorful, stylishly studded boots for men, women and children, as well as men's jackets, belts and Western hats.
January 27, 2011
Whether you are tempted to take the plunge or you're just trying to turn up the thermostat on your relationship, think outside the candy box this Valentine's Day. Steal your beloved away from the boring "bonbons and roses" routine to a glamorous getaway. Here are some deals and excursions guaranteed to impress. (Unless noted, rates quoted are double occupancy, valid Valentine's Day weekend and do not include tax.) Maryland •Gramercy Mansion (Green Spring Valley)
November 15, 2010
The abandoned rowhouse next door to Wendy and Brian Malaney has been a nightmare of a neighbor. The rowhouse's roofing material blew off, and water seeped through the Malaneys' adjoining walls. Later the pipes burst in the neighboring property, flooding their basement. The air they and their two young daughters breathe is now heavy with the noxious stink of mold. Abandoned buildings are a perennial problem in Baltimore — a city where many residents share connecting walls.
November 9, 2010
Almost any bowl game looks appealing to a Maryland football team that remained on its chilly campus after last season while other Atlantic Coast Conference teams prepared for postseason games in enticing locations such as Miami and Orlando, Fla. But of course, there is appealing (for example, the Chick-fil-A Bowl in Atlanta, or the Champs Sports Bowl in Orlando) and then there is spectacular (the Orange Bowl in Miami). With three regular-season games left, many Maryland players and coaches can't help but glance at the list of bowl games and contemplate their possible December or January destinations.
October 17, 2010
A show of hands: How many of us think about what covers our feet? Time was, when we bought socks for athletic pursuits, we opted for a bag of white tube socks or suffered in itchy silence as we slid our feet into a new pair of ragg wool socks. No more. With summer over and people trading in their sandals and flip flops for socks and shoes, it's decision time. Dr. Ross Taubman, a Baltimore area podiatrist, says he's beginning to have conversations with his patients in transition to fall footwear.
October 5, 2010
The newest batch of electricity alternatives to Baltimore Gas and Electric Co.'s standard product are as confusing as ever and continue to be misleadingly advertised, despite attempts at reform by the Public Service Commission. Lower in the column I'll get into why the PSC should clamp down. But first some advice. Once you cut through the haze, the latest deals are the cheapest since Maryland household electricity was fully deregulated several years ago. One in particular is a good choice, provided you pay attention when the contract expires.
October 1, 2010
A swirl of conspiracy theories surrounding the death of Kenneth N. Harris, until now largely background noise in the trial of the men accused of killing him, surged to front and center in the defense lawyers' final appeals to the jury before the panel began considering its verdicts Friday afternoon. The attorneys' formulations, some of them only hinted at during questioning of state's witnesses but given full vent in closing arguments, ran the gamut of intrigue and trickery. They included suggestions that it was the owner of the jazz club outside which Harris died, a longtime friend of the former city councilman, who had set up the killing, and that someone unknown had shot Harris from across a parking lot just as the robbery was getting under way. One of the attorneys even introduced a theory he said had been suggested by one of his interns.