Baltimore’s taco game just went up a level.

Eight years ago today, about this time, I was heading to the ETC in Baltimore to meet Jess for the just the third time, but this time as an employee. I had no idea what I was doing or what it would mark the start of.

But despite being terrified, we started filling a whiteboard with “what is Allovue?” She had already been at it a year and was finally ready to start building the product. I’m not really sure if she was supposed to be mostly telling me her vision or if I was meant to participate.

As I recall, I just jumped in, excited, and by the time Ted (our soon to be CTO) came in, Jess and I had just about covered the two whiteboard walls. Then Ted and I started working on a data model while Jess took a call about some award she was about to receive.

Jess will often pull out a Moleskine from the (now quite short, relatively speaking) time before I joined Allovue to show me how my new idea was just her old idea. I still sometimes mention that whiteboard.

As I headed to the airport that night, I still didn’t really know what my job was or fully understand how anything start up worked. But I knew I was still excited and thinking about Allovue, which is how I had felt every time I talked to Jess and why I knew I needed the job.

I’ll tell the embarrassing story of what happened next in two years, on my tenth Alloversary.

Baltimore was looking pretty good again today.

Pink blossoms on trees in a park with a winding sidewalk.

Baltimore weather lately? 💩💩

The sun still being out right now? 😎

I just realized that my life changed have meant I can basically say “I grew up on Long Island. I spent my 20s in Providence. I’m spending my 30s in Baltimore.”

I wonder where I’ll spend my 40s.

Seems appropriate for today in Baltimore.

60s this week in Baltimore? I’ll be wearing my vacation shirts and sun glasses walking around Hampden every afternoon.

DST does not start in Mexico this weekend. It does start in Baltimore this weekend. Our flight back is Sunday. I can’t decide how much more likely this will make it that I miss our flight back…

There are a lot of places in Baltimore I’ve just forgotten about during the pandemic. Someone just mentioned Wet City on Reddit, and I can’t believe I haven’t even thought of this great spot in years.

Hospitalizations lag, but case rate and positivity rates in Baltimore City are now similar to the September-October Delta peak. I suspect in two more weeks, we’ll be back to June numbers. If so, we should consider removing nearly all restrictions for vaccinated (and boosted).

I just want to take nice walks outside when I’m feeling restless and Baltimore is not helping lately.

The Baltimore Banner goes right for the key areas local reporting– crime and education– with Liz Bowie and Justin Fenton transitioning from the Sun to the Banner. Very smart.

The trees in Baltimore this week have been stunning.

Very excited to be on a panel, “Examining Child Poverty, Equity and School Finance in Baltimore” tonight. But also, damn I’m hungry.

I had a weird thought in Walgreens today about looking forward to being able to take off my mask. I didn’t even do that during the few weeks without a mandate in Baltimore. It’s clear I’m feeling fatigue— I’ve never compulsively thought that this whole time.

New Jamaican spot in Baltimore— we will return.