News and notes from Reston (tm).

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Outrage, Wailing and Gnashing of Teeth After Reston Called Soulless 'Ant Colony'

soulless ants.jpeg

If you violated the emergency curfew this weekend and dared to venture outside to see the overturned cars, burning grocery stores and general rioting, then you know that Restonians didn't take too kindly to having our beloved beige community being called a "bland ant colony" by some "news paper" columnist. Haha, who are we kidding, they mostly just made snarky comments on the Internets, though the South Lakes Safeway did briefly catch on fire. Coincidence?

Washington Post reporter Tom Jackman first unearthed this shocking insult, which was perpetrated by a columnist for the Virginian-Pilot in Norfolk who dared to mock the ongoing efforts to get the Reston! license plate approved, writing:
“You have to wonder who will want to zip around with this on his car: ’Reston! Live Work Play.’ Be honest, is there a more soulless spot in the commonwealth than that bland ant colony near Dulles?”
Frankly, we're more concerned about the real threats to Reston's mantle as the place to Live, Work, Play, and Get Involved (tm)... places like Manassas Park. But if you're into such things, Jackman did get a bit of good ole' Norfolk-bashing in:
Honestly? I can think of one. How about...Norfolk? For one thing, they average 37.5 homicides per year down there since 2000. That’s a lot less souls, after all the shooting stops. Reston, with a population of 58,404, is about one-fourth the size of Norfolk. It had one homicide last year, zero the year before. Norfolk had 28 last year, 34 the year before. So 62 to 1 is not really the ratio you’re looking for when you’re only four times bigger than bland Reston. At least we’re alive.

Have you ever walked around downtown Norfolk at night? Of course not, you’re still alive. It is dull and, uh, dead. Ever been to the Reston Town Center at night, or sat in the outdoor cafes around Lake Anne, or rocked out at 1 a.m. in the Lakeside Inn? None of them really remind you of Norfolk. Ever.
Let the lively Internets debate begin!
As an Ant, I can assure you that Reston has a great deal of soul. For that matter, most insects love Reston – it has that certain quality that all of us creepy crawlies find irresistible. For example, Lake Anne is considered the Mediterranean of the insect world.

I lived in Reston for years. It is a pre-packaged pre-chewed community run by the "Association", collection of Polit Bureau types that will come paint your house for you (sending you the bill of course) if they don't like the color you chose.

Reston is a manufactured community for people who don't want to think much.

How can one be so obtuse as to compare Reston to Norfolk? Sure, it might be nice to live in a McMansion in some new soulless surburban development in Reston. But if Reston were to disappear from the face of the Earth, I'm sure the rest of us would barely blink. Our commonwealth would not be losing much.

I love Reston, but as a kid we always said, "We're not dead, we're just Reston

Rocked out at the Lakeside Inn? Somebody needs to get a life.

Ever notice how all ants are alike? Study the Reston ants in action sometime. Same clothes same body language same activities at the same times. Somewhat like 1984 without big brother watching.

Reston's "soullessness" was pretty much built in when the community was first designed as a controlled environment by Gulf Oil. The rigidness and comprehensiveness of homeowners association restrictions on any kind of individuality in architecture and landscaping persist to this day.
Haterz. Someone also tried to make the case that Reston was the inspiration for the film Donnie Darko, but by that point, we were just ready to call it a day, the end.


  1. Peasant From Less Sought After South RestonJanuary 17, 2012 at 1:07 PM

    Now if they made a license plate that read "Reston: Soulless Ant Colony", I would indeed buy one for my oxcart.

  2. So what's the one tiny, unconnected hole in the ant colony that no one can get to? I'm guessing it's DRB headquarters.

  3. Funny, I thought that was a scale model of the Wiehle Metro parking garage.

  4. I see that Ant Colony Reston managed to get indoor tennis. But what about the ant bowling alley?? Or an ant skate park??

    btw, Ant Colony Reston needz moar mauve. But I notice the ant is close to russet brown. That's the spirit, Ant!

  5. And all this time I thought it was Ashburn that had no soul.

  6. Texas may have fireants, but South Reston has pissants. And if any of those kindly folks from Norfolk would care to come visit The Gulag, I'll be more than happy to treat them to some golden Reston hospitality.

  7. Guess again, Big Brother IS watching...or at least taking the form of flying squads of "Coven-ant Counselors" soon to be visiting each cluster in the colony hellbent on citing wayward homeowner ants for infractions of the design guidelines.


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