This month, we’re bowing to 11 badass local couples making moves (with righteous intent) and leaving their mark on the District. Among several questions, we ask how they’d remix the concept of power couple. What emerged is a collective belief that the energy you bring, the responsibility you share (to each other and your community), and the joy of the journey all greatly matter. We also learned love and humor coexist well. Thank you for the laughs and inspiration.
Rach Pike + Jo McDaniel, Co-founders of as you are bar
Power Couple, Redefined
To quote Spiderman, “With great power comes great responsibility.” To us, that means being a power couple includes responsibility to the community you are representing and serving, as well as the flexibility that comes with being held accountable in case we misstep. In our case, that means we are running a space that makes safe the most marginalized of our already marginalized queer community.
Strike A Balance
Taking time just for us is a big deal. It’s important that we still date each other. It matters to us that we stay curious and connected because this work changes and challenges us daily and we want to enjoy it.
We remind ourselves it is an honor to take on this labor of love and a lot of work goes into something like as you are [bar]. We remind ourselves we do “everything from love,” always (our engagement rings are actually inscribed with that quote).
Of course. Jo has taught me (Rach) how important it is to take time for the small things and pull off the gas pedal to connect and enjoy what’s going on around us. Rach does an incredible job of coming back to the “why,” keeping our communication impeccable and allowing the love we have for our community to guide us.
Conflict Resolution Tips
We work to stay curious and remember that [a] partner is a whole human separate from you, with real and valid needs. It’s okay to take a moment, step away, leave space for frustration and have a plan to come back together with a common goal.
Oh, we drink it. Jo “needs” it more but mostly because she is obsessed with our new Cadillac of an espresso machine.
We both understand the magnitude of our project and the responsibility we agreed to take on to make it happen. We went into this together with the same goal in mind. We also know the hours, creativity, accountability and exhaustion it all entails, so we’re kind to each other because we both know it can be a lot.
The Meet Cute
At an interview, actually. Jo interviewed me (Rach) for a security role at our last establishment and she always says it best, “We fell into step from the moment we met.” We went from co-workers to best friends to partners in life and now business.
D.C. Date Spot
Late night at the Lincoln Memorial with a good book and something to sip on. We also love dirty martinis and a great bottle of red when the weather is great and the place has a patio.
Celebrity Hall Pass
We communicate really well and respect each other massively so a “hall pass” isn’t really necessary for us. Also, celebrities are just people; there is really no need for special rules.
Dermot Kennedy is a love of ours, though we have many songs we consider written for/about us. We have always connected over sappy love songs and magical lyrics. Jo has a playlist called “Sap Is Cool.”
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