Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user schmiddi

You can talk about whatever is on your mind – quality of life issues, a beautiful tree you spotted, scuttlebutt, or any random questions/thoughts you may have. I’ll open this thread every morning at 10am.

65 Comment

  • Rave! Gold finches! Tons of them!

  • Anyone have a recommendation for a tree service/arborist? We lost a good piece of a tree in our yard. It’s stable for now, but we have some fairly big limbs that need to come down and we’d like to have it assessed to see whether we should have it removed altogether.

  • Watching the terrible flooding post-Irene in Vermont.

    I moved down here from Vermont a little less than a year ago and can’t believe everything I grew up around is flooded. Roads are gone, historic old covered bridges, entire towns flooded. Terrible.

    I know we got lucky here, but some people didn’t. Keeping them in my thoughts.

    • Vermont’s really in bad shape from what I heard on NPR this morning.

    • Same here, moved from Brattleboro a few years back. Looks pretty bad.

      • Yeah, I’m from Woodstock area and it’s horrible there.

        Covered bridges gone, propane tanks floating down rivers, my hometown, Barnard, is closed off. Bridge in Bethel is closed, road to Woodstock is closed. Just no way out. It’s terrible.

  • Rant: Was selfishly hoping for a hurricane-day so I’d get a free day off from work.

    Rave: Looks like a nice weather week ahead!

    • agreed, with all the hubbub around the storm I was expecting to at least be working from home today.

      The weather seems really nice out so I’m thinking about making the walk down to explore the MLK memorial, anyone been to it yet?

  • Revel: I moved in on Saturday! Finished unloading the car about 10-15 minutes before the rain really started coming down! No wet sofa, mattress, or boxes!

    Rant: Worrying about the financials, Sept 1 needs to come sooner!

    Revel: I have a wonderful support system (excellent movers too!) consisting of my father, brother, cousins, and boyfriend. I’m a very fortunate young woman.

  • Rave: Had a craving for pho this weekend, debated ordering from Pho14 or PhoViet but decided instead to try making it at home. Homemade pho = just the thing for a rainy Saturday.

    Rant: Stinkbugs are showing up in my garden. Not only attacking ripe tomatoes but also the green ones. And the peppers and the beans.

    • Mmm, I want pho now.
      It’s easy to make, but I hate how my broth turns out cloudy and dark. I’ve tried different techniques– charring the onion/ginger/spices in the pot, broiling them in the oven, tossing them in uncooked– all with the same results. Any tips?

      • I charred the onion and ginger on my gas stove, dry roasted the spices in the pot & used homemade chicken stock. How about using cheesecloth when you strain the broth? That might help.

      • I’ve never made Pho but whenever I make chicken stock the most important thing to keep it clear is to constantly skim. Whenever junk comes up (usually from the meat bones, less from the veggies) i just skim it. it takes a while and is a pain but i always come out with clear stock.

        • claire

          In this vein, most pho recipes I’ve looked at call for boiling the bones separately in water for 5 – 10 minutes (I think) first to get rid of the scum and then discarding that water and getting on with the actual broth making.

      • Bear

        From what I have read about making meat-based stocks, the trick is to not only skim often, but also make sure to simmer gently–not boil. I have not tested this, however.

    • andy

      Do you have a pho recipe? That would be awesome!

    • are you sure they’re stink bugs and not adult squash beetles? They look very similar.

      We had the beetles all over our squash and at first I thought they were stinks.

  • Rant: it’s monday again. why am I so unbearably cranky and miserable come monday? Nothing even has to happen except waking up and coming to work. sigh.

    Rant: The proposal that is due this week will, once again, be a last minute rush, rush job, even though we have had WELL over a month to get shit together.

    Rave: nothing really.

  • Rave: Worked with a realtor this time while looking for a place and he got me a house in Petworth with a yard and newly remodeled kitchen for hundreds less per month than my current apartment in Columbia Heights!

    Easiest housing search ever! And I am saving money living in more space. A YARD!

    • Nice! Care to share the name of this person?

      • Met him by virtue of the listing, but his name is Frank DeCrosta and he works for Coldwell Banker. He was attentive, responsive and was on our side all the way trying to get us the house in a competitive market. Also got the property owner to make some repairs we requested before move in. Thumbs up all around.

        • Thanks, so it’s a rental?

          • Correct – although I think he mainly shows properties for sale. He was showing the house on behalf of a colleague of his who manages the property for Coldwell’s property management division.

  • claire

    Rant: The ceiling in my bedroom started leaking during the hurricane and then started falling apart. So now there’s a large (2 feet by 2 feet) chunk of plaster missing from the ceiling that I had to clean up from the floor.
    Rave: I don’t own the house (renting).

    Rant: Wasn’t able to make taro tapioca pudding this weekend because the taro root I bought got moldy.
    Rave: Was able to make a homemade version of Rasika’s palak chaat and it turned out pretty darn good! For those of you interested, I’ll be putting the recipe on my blog at some point in the next couple weeks.

  • rant: hungover. but i have no one to blame but myself, so it’s self-induced rant.

    related rant: the older i get, the harder hangover recovery is.

    rave: the weather is awesome.

  • Rant: My co-worker munching on their lunch like there is no tomorrow. The sound of people eating may be my biggest pet peeve. Gross.

    Rave: I am employed and thus, have a co-worker. Some people aren’t that lucky.

    Rave: Most of my problems are trivial and won’t matter in a year or even a few days.

  • Rant: Over hyped natural disasters during which nothing even remotely interesting happens. I want my money back.

    • But they have to over hype them because they don’t want to be blamed if it’s actually worse than they say it will be!

      • too much hype and solid preparation are two different things. they could have just alerted people to what needed to be done to stay safe, kept us abreast of evacuation notices, then waited. the media is OUT OF CONTROL.. they just report to report at this point. it’s pathetic.

    • I like that it was hyped up. It made it more fun.

    • 10 people died. I keep wanting to talk about how it was no big deal, but to some people in North Carolina and Virginia, as well as Vermont, it is a very big deal.

    • Not overhyped to Vermont. Or NC. Or to the folks who died.
      Enjoy your sunny day, though.

    • As a homeowner I’m relieved that nothing “remotely interesting” happened!

  • Rave: didn’t lose power, no water issues at home.

    Rant: Office in Annapolis has water damage so we have loud fans and heaters all over the place. May have to replace drywall to prevent mold and our Annual Conference for 2000 people is in only three weeks!!!

    • My office in SE DC has the same problem. I’m glad I wore long sleeves and long pants today because it’s freeeezing with all those fans running.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: People who don’t turn off the ping noise for IMs & emails at the office.

    Rave: No hurricane or earthquake damage at home or work.

    Rave: Friends & family from New Orleans checking on me after both the earthquake & hurricane.

    Rant: I miss them.

  • Rave: No damage from the hurricane

    Rant: I woke up at 2am Sunday morning to the sound of people trying to help someone who was inebriated and unresponsive on the sidewalk out front – Fire/EMT officers were able to transport him away shortly afterward.

    Rant2: More signs of alcohol abuse going on in the neighborhood.

  • Rant: Watching helplessly while family and friends go through earthquake, hurricane, and flooding!
    Rave: The Internet- incredible how simple it was to connect and check in with everyone.
    Rant: Last day in the office in Rwanda! Government called for a holiday tomorrow (was supposed to be my last day tomorrow…)so had to do two days of work in one!
    Rave: Leave tomorrow night for my (belated) HONEYMOON!!!!

  • Rave: Had the windows open yesterday; there was the nicest breeze coming in from outside. Hoping I can keep the AC off for good until next summer.

    • Same here and had the best sleep last night with the cool breeze. Yay for breezes. Ditto on the AC thing.

      • Emmaleigh504

        I don’t get this at all, I love ac at night. It keeps things cool and since I have a window unit it has a nice comforting hum that drowns out street noises and the porn star upstairs.

        • I actually woke up shivering this morning with the AC off and the windows open. It did take a while to fall asleep hearing all the outside noise, though.

        • saf

          And I don’t get that. I just don’t like A/C much, except in the very very very hottest weather.

  • Rave: Borrowed all of The West Wing on Dvd from a friend which has made down time between looking for jobs slightly more tolerable. I had seen a fair number of episodes but never in order.

    Rant: Its made me realize there are no longer smart, witty, shows on TV that can make me both laugh out loud and cry in the same episode.

  • Bear

    Rave: Today I took pictures of geckos, ostriches, baboons, and penguins. I love the Western Cape of South Africa.

    Rant: One of the baboons tried to climb into my car.

  • Rant: Idiots who thought the hurricane was going to be more than it was, and now blame weather officials. Really – is your water going to go bad? Are you never going to use those batteries? Will your nonperishables go to waste? Get over it. Better to be safe than sorry.

    Rant: 5 months pregnant, could not drink while waiting out the storm. It was boring.

    Rave: Only lost satellite reception (which is so predictable with DirecTV). Hello, Netflix!

    Rave: Gorgeous weather we’re having now!

  • Rant: Walking around on Saturday night, before the winds picked up, I was annoyed to see how many people didn’t bother to secure their patio furniture. I’d rather spend 30 minutes moving everything inside, just in case, than risk it going through someone’s window.

  • Revel: Something to consider for DC public housing assistance.


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