News and notes from Reston (tm).

Monday, August 14, 2017

HBD Restonian 'Web Log': Ten Years of Covering Reston Like Invasive English Ivy, Or At Least Making Lots Of Dumb Jokes About Bollards

This Sunday marked the 10th anniversary of this filthy “web log.” Way back in ought-seven, by the flickering light of our candle-powered 300-baud modem, we launched with a simple dream and some highly evocative poetry. Millions of page views, tens of thousands of comments, nearly 2,500 posts, one official DRB-Approved Color of the Week (Russet Brown, thanks for asking) and precisely zero (0) redesigns later, here we are.

So many memories. We mocked our less tolerant neighbor to the west before it became a model of comportment compared to our own grocery stores. We kept clapping for the Metro fairy to bring us a 54-minute E-ticket ride downtown, then wondered about the consequences of becoming “another Manhattan” and waited for our property values to septuple. (Still waiting!) We mourned the loss of Reston’s beloved founder, as well as some rad architecture and the less consequential disappearance of a midscale chain eatery. Savvy readers might have seen in our oft-professed love of the Macaroni Grill a pointed commentary about our inevitable destiny of bland big box development supplanted in turn by equally bland mixed-use development. Mostly, we just liked drawing on the paper tablecloths with crayon while enjoying a good breadstick or two.

Peeping tom

We saw Tall Oaks decline (farewell, "Susie de los Santos") and Reston Station rise. We saw efforts to describe Tysons Corner as another Paris first as comedy, then as dystopian tragedy. We gnashed our teeth and shook our fists when our favorite "stressful city-like shopping center" decided to charge for parking, like some common strip mall, all while declaring its eliteness and ignoring our offers to help with crisis management, which is something shopping centers just totally normally do. We discovered the real truth behind Reston’s creation myths, uncovering the crazed homicidal nudists in whose gnarly footsteps we now walk. And just like a homicidal maniac in a horror movie, we saw ill-advised attempts to redevelop a golf course return again, and again, and again. We learned lots of fun vocabulary—vowel-free developments, floor area ratio, brutalism, Texas donuts, and of course, woonerf.

There was opera. There were music videos, each better than the last. There were triffids, invasive plants, copperheads, rogue canoes. And then there were the bollards — the more fanciful the better. There was the time we became a campaign issue. And the time we were told we weren’t “professional journalists," even though, in true All of the President's Men style, we managed to find the smoking Bratz. But mostly we remember the awesome advertising that has — at least to date! — failed to land us the lakefront house of our dreams. At this point, frankly, we’d settle for a Ford Focus.

Will this filthy “web log” still be (sporadically) churning out posts in 2027? Maybe if people clicky clicky on those ads, we’ll manage to “graduate” to a one side brick/three side vinyl McTownhouse somewhere out beyond Ashburn and start the equally well-received Brambeldonianian web log (haha, just kidding, this web log was never well-received!) But there’s one thing we know for sure. The bike trail over Wiehle Avenue, much less the Soapstone Bridge, will still be on the drawing board, the end.


  1. Awww, happy bloggiversary and many happy meals at the Sterling Macaroni Grill to you Restonian!

    1. Not to be a debbie downer as kids almost certainly have not said in half a century, but that closed down too.

  2. You have served your community well, Restonian. With the massive overbuilding of shoebox dwellings along the Metro toll road strip soon to be called Wegsmania, your task expands to inform (indoctrinate) our newest citizens of (the "should be a town but prefer County domination and HOA incompetence" vague tax district known as) Reston.

  3. Happy birthday, Restonian! Thanks for many a good laugh at the expense of our earth-toned overlords.

  4. Congrats on 10 years! I began reading this blog when I came across it while searching about Reston's history. I check in ... weekly, while at home, formerly when on a Fairfax Connector bus to West Falls Church, and now while on a stalled Silver Line train. Cheers to another 10 years.

  5. Thanks for all the laughs, and occasional information, while we've lived here. (Serously.)

    Mr. Russet Brown

  6. A clip show? Oh Restonian, you have finally gone Hollywood.

  7. Thanks for the humor and insight. We need them both.

  8. Please continue forever, your combination of wit and informed detail is light in the murk of our lives. At some point you must uncloak and let us thank you to your face!


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