The bungalow-lined street that runs behind my apartment building to Georgia Avenue appears standard issue Montgomery County at first glance: proliferation of Priuses? Check! Lawns graced with Obama/Biden signs? Check! Speed bumps? Check! But my daily ¾ mile walking commute down Silver Spring Avenue has revealed its unique character. The kids are polite. The pets are friendly. The gardens are beautifully landscaped with flowers continuously in bloom. People of diverse countries of origin engage in spontaneous conversation. And most shocking of all, and in stark contrast to the denizens of my previous address, Thayer Avenue, the residents of Silver Spring Avenue say hello to me as I pass. As if this wasn't enough, the kids at the nearby elementary school write affirmations in chalk on the sidewalk such as “You are so smart!” and “Have a great day!” Oddly enough, crime novelist George Pelecanos lives nearby, but does not appear to derive inspiration from this locale, at least from what I have read of his work!