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Thursday, January 27, 2022
Editor’s NotebookEditor’s Notebook: More of that ‘past is prologue’ stuff

Editor’s Notebook: More of that ‘past is prologue’ stuff

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’Twas just last week that, after dipping into the local-history file, I pulled out a chestnut from the mid-1960s about Arlington officials being concerned about aircraft noise and jets deviating from approved take-off lanes after departing National Airport.

Here ’ s another one from the mid-1960s that shows there is no new issue under the sun, only new people discovering said issue for the first time.

From this week back in 1965, the Northern Virginia Sun reported that the Arlington Planning Commission was asking for permission from the County Board to embark on a study of the dearth of [wait for it in 3, 2, 1 …] affordable housing in the community.

Yep, the names change, and no doubt the prices of housing really, really change, but the issue remains the same, lo these 56 summers later.

And probably will also be an issue 56 summers hence, although (and this is both a guess and a fervent hope) I will not be the one covering it then.

Also from this week in various years of long ago, from the Sun’s archives:

>> Back this week in 1967, it was reported that Fairfax County in the fall would become the last major jurisdiction across the Washington region to begin offering kindergarten classes.

>> Going back even further, all the way to the first week of August in 1943, the Sun reported on Miss Mary Wills, who has become the first female bus driver for Arnold Bus Lines (back when private bus companies, not the Metro system, handled the needs of commuters). How did Miss Wills like the job? “I love it!” she replied.

YAY, WHIPPLES! It’s good to hear that the Arlington County Democratic Committee will be honoring Tom and Mary Margaret Whipple as their joint “Distinguished Democrat of the Year” for 2021, with an in-person celebration set for late September.

Well-deserved honor for the couple, and it will be nice to see all the folks that show up at these events saluting the people who made the Democratic Committee the juggernaut it is today.

Years ago, I was on a Sister City trip with the Whipples, and while I may have my trips mixed up, I believe this one was the Arlington’s German Sister City of Aachen.

The crowd on that trip tended to skew a little older, because they were the ones able to get away and travel, and if I am remembering it correctly, Aachen had a short one-street “red-light district” where the ladies sat or stood in windows displaying their attributes to the passers-by.

Here we were, this group of maybe 20 Arlington tourists with a median age kind of up there (present company excluded, at least back then), and while I don’t think anyone was thinking of taking advantage of the offers on display, we were a friendly group and waved to the ladies, getting waves in return.

Anyway, I think that was the trip with the Whipples, but if they weren’t on that one, someone correct me and we’ll be good to do. Either way, kudos for the honor!

  • Scott McCaffrey
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