Virginian-Pilot columnist Kerry Dougherty probably didn't set out to take a potshot at Reston this week.
In looking through some of the hundreds of bills on the docket in the 2012 Virginia General Assembly, Dougherty stumbled across the one that would consider giving Reston it's own "Work, Live, Play" license plate.
"Even this session's license-plate proposals are yawn-inducing," wrote Dougherty. "Although 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?"
Say what? Soulless ant colony? Says who? Not Tom Jackman's State of NoVa blog. Jackman points out that Norfolk, where the Virginian-Pilot is based, has averaged 37.5 homicides per year there since 2000.
"That’s a lot less souls, after all the shooting stops," Jackman writes.
Reston has more than 50,000 souls (and only one murder in 2011), and I would venture to guess many - even most - souls don't consider it an ant colony. If it were, it would be an ant colony with lakefront views, granite counters and recreational amenities.
Come on, columnist lady.
We've got public art and a Mercury Fountain. Not bland. A quirky-but-wise founder coming up on his 98th birthday. I saw him out last night drinking a glass of wine. Not bland. Dougherty needs to spend an afternoon on a deck boat on Lake Thoreau. No, no, no, not bland. Heck, we've got middle-age flash mob dancers at the Farmers Market. That's soul!
Has she ever read the comments section on Patch when one brings up the schools or whether Reston needs a third Chipotle or an indoor tennis place? Not bland (but could be called first-world problems, for sure).
In any case, do you agree with Dougherty? Perhaps you do feel like you are stuck in a soulless ant colony? Or maybe you are enjoying an ahead-of-its-time New Town and are pretty pleased, regardless of whether you want a Reston license plate?
Leave your thoughts in the comments below. Oh, and if you want to reach out directly, send an e-postcard from the ant colony to firstname.lastname@example.org.