Baltimore City Power Rankings: Shorty gets his grill back, pumpkin spice closes a school, and more

↑ Shorty Davis

Last week, activist, organizer, artist, homeless advocate, and cook Duane "Shorty" Davis announced his massive, tank-like grill had been stolen. It spread across social media as many tried to raise awareness for locating it, and even media outlets that've long seen Shorty as a thorn in their side covered the theft. Eventually, the grill was found, thanks to Baltimore residents, not because of the cops, as Davis and others were quick to note. And when Shorty went to retrieve it, he told the apparent thief to just give it back and there would be no charges, no involvement by police or anything like that. This past weekend, Shorty, forever dedicated and seemingly tireless, was back out and grilling.

↑ Club Charles

The iconic Club Charles reopened for business last week after closing in late July for renovations and fortunately, as the many reopening night posts on social media showed, the bar's red walls, neon lights, and Art Deco touches all remained intact. "It looked the same, there was a lot of speculation of why it closed (I doubt we will ever get the real story), but everyone seemed very glad and excited that it was reopened, and it was nice to walk by and see the sign lit up and that side of the street lively again!" said Amelia Rambissoon, interim executive director of the Station North Arts and Entertainment District. Hopefully, Club Chuck's back for good.


Following two listless performances that cast doubts on the 2017 season, the Ravens traveled to Oakland and looked like a good football team with a competent offense for a change. While yes, the Raiders were without starting quarterback Derek Carr, that had little effect at the start of the game as Baltimore jumped out to a quick lead with an opening touchdown drive and, a short time later, a fumble return for six points. They went to halftime up 24-10. The third quarter was a little anemic, but the Ravens tacked on two field goals in the fourth to seal the win, 30-17. Best of all, the Pittsburgh Steelers were trounced by the Jacksonville Jaguars, giving Baltimore a tie for first place in the AFC North and the added bonus of the disastrous London game against Jacksonville suddenly becoming a little more palatable. With four upcoming games against middle-of-the-pack teams, the Ravens should really step on the gas.

↓ Pugh

Back in August, Mayor Pugh struck up a deal with Tent City to get them off the lawn of City Hall and into Pinderhughes Elementary, and promised housing for all of the Tent City residents who were experiencing homelessness. Six weeks later, Baltimore Bloc called Pugh out and noted the many ways she violated the agreement: Not everyone there has been housed (Pugh claims 25 of 55 have, Bloc disputes this) and its residents have been drug tested, which was part of the original plan. At a press conference last week, Pugh didn't acknowledge Bloc's critiques and cited um, some people on Facebook saying she's doing a good job—even as a well-known group of activists say she's doing a very bad job.

↓ Pumpkin Spice

The official flavor/scent of #fall or #basic rakes in as much criticism as profit. Both the shit pumpkin spice consumers get and the flavor's monopoly on café menus and seasonal marketing seem kinda out of control—either way, why should we care so much about mildly gross lattes and scented candles? In further proof of the world's hyper-sensitivity to pumpkin spice (or, to look at it another way, support for a rightful aversion), a high school in Upper Fells Point was evacuated last week after a troubling smell hampered the breathing of several students and teachers, some of whom were taken to a hospital. The fire department was called, bringing along a Hazmat team, only to find that the source of the odor was a pumpkin spice aerosol plugin. More fuel to the homey yet annoying fire of the pumpkin spice debate.

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