Commentaries & Fiction & Rarely-written Poems
On everything under the sun from the point of view my itsy bitsy home here in Davenport, Florida.
I don’t come from Davenport but have lived here since 2012. I like to think that I came from Richmond, Virginia, because that’s where I lived for 18 years, but I’m also from Puerto Rico and New York, two splices of my life that I reveal from time to time in my writings.
I started my slightly irreverent, eponymous site on January 1, 2017 to fill an information void in my community. The local newspaper, The Ledger, didn’t report much coverage and the City of Davenport municipal government didn’t communicate effectively. (Still doesn’t.)
It started with getting to know a few politicians (a bit too closely) and grew into my community work, which was plenty including serving as chairperson of my city’s Parks & Recreation Advisory Committee, serving on the Charter Review Committee, serving on the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Committee, and on the Polk County Democratic Executive Committee.
I’ve been a lot of things in my short life but my favorite thing is writing, thus this blog. One of my other favorite career choices included working in economic development for the Commonwealth of Virginia in Hampton and Hanover counties bringing in such giants at the time as Gateway computers and Nextel phones.
Before Darhlene.com, for eight years I ran The Poinciana Crane,[i] starting it as a real estate blog then blossoming it into a hyper-local news source before closing in 2012. There was a lot happening that year, including yours truly running for a county seat while serving as vice president to local civic group; helping found the Poinciana Economic Development Alliance (PEDA); and managing, in a nearly unpaid position, a private for-profit blog for Poinciana’s Solivita community.
I passed Florida’s real estate exam on the first try in 2004. (Yeah, surprised me too.) It was a feat not accomplished by most licensure candidates, but I was also the one surrounded by industry sharks, I later found, ones who’d eat their mother’s for a few thousand bucks (or less, who knows). I thought my background — which had included decades of experience in economic development, government, nonprofits, self-employment, and technology — would naturally lend me to a successful career in real estate sales. It did not.
After all of my pre-realtor successes, I noticed that I had become a detail-oriented leader, a community activist and a social critic than I was a salesman of any sort. I found that projects that jostled my muse involved speaking truth to power, advancing my neighborhood, and helping others. As such I helped paved the way for a restroom facility to be built in a neighborhood park in a majority-minority community called Jamestown, a $100k project, and for the improvements to Lake Play in my corner of the world.
So I’ve had lots of experiences and continue to have them. To document some of those experiences — and much more — I will use my long, slender fingers to bang on my Dell keyboard like a piano and entertain my readers while doing what I like to do best: research and write. Please follow me as I venture here to talk about our world.
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[i] The Poinciana Crane ran as a real estate news and commentary blog from 2004 to March 2012, ending with 159 followers.