Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user n0rbert.

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. But please no personal attacks. I’ll open this thread every morning at 10am.

One reader wants to know – anyone know a good piano tuner?

124 Comment

  • Rant: Tensions seem really high recently (outside the spike in crime we witnessed over the weekend…Dupont, stabbing and shooting in Adams Morgan, saw a fight from my apt and gun thrown in the bushes and friend got mugged)

    Rave: Weather’s nice?

    • Shooting was in Columbia Heights, not AdMo. Not that it should make you feel much better.

      What did you do about the gun in the bushes?

      • Rant: I read with horror about the sentencing of a 20 year old who clearly committed first degree murder in SE DC. Chased the guy all around the house and shot him multiple times until he was dead. He plead guilty to second degree murder, so his sentence is like 16-19 years. He’ll be out before he is 40! So I guess in DC, you can murder and just get a slap on the wrist. Seems if you murder, it should be life without parole every time. Lazy prosecuters!

      • Whatever you consider Columbia and 16th, it was outside my apt. Guys threw what we thought was a gun in the bushes when cops drove by (this was right after a fight in front of my apt) and then went back in and picked it up…then went running off down the street. Called the cops and they searched the bushes but found nothing

  • Rave: Found a place that I think I’ll really like in Alexandria. It’s 150 dollars/mo cheaper and 300 sq feet. After December I wont work in DC anymore so there wont be any need for me to be here.

    Rant: Would have to break my lease here. I really hate the neighborhood I live in and I feel like a prisoner to my own home after dark. Just weighing the options right now.

  • Rave: I’m moving tomorrow! To a new 500 sqft studio in Silver Spring.

    Rave 2: I’m leaving my crappy 2 bdrm apt far behind.

    Rant: So much work to get done to take tomorrow off.

  • Rave: What an incredible picture!

  • Rave: Getting Christmas shopping done so I can enjoy the holidays. Determined to do ALL of it online this year.

    Rant: Drivers who tailgate. Really, you are not going any faster when you’re on my ass than if you were 50 feet back. Thanks.

    • I slow down for tailgaters, actually. Partly it’s to piss them off, but it’s also because I know I have less of an ability to stop suddenly if I need to when someone is five feet from my bumper.

      • from what I learned in defensive driving school, this is the proper way to handle tailgaters, you need not even brake, just take your foot off the accelerator.

        • That kind of makes sense, but won’t they still slam into your tail if you stop suddenly, even if you’re going slower? Or is it just simply to lessen the impact that a car crashing into you going 55 mph (instead of 65 mph) would have?

      • I slow down too, but am always worried that a passive-aggressive response like that will actually inspire some idiot’s road rage and eventually I will get in an accident.

        Hate hate hate those tailgaters!

  • Rave:

    Dream job opened up (or at least job that will be the precursor to the dream job) and I have the right experience and contacts to actually make it worth applying. I really, really want this job, so I’m trying not to get my hopes up. Been crushed by this job market too many times this year, so I’m not optimistic about my chances even though I’d be perfect for this job.


    What being unemployed does to your confidence.

    • Hang in there, Anon. I started this absolutely rotten job in April and started applying to jobs in June when I realize how corrupt and demoralizing it was to stay in an office like this. I am now leaving for green pastures (not even greener, just green) next week because I seriously applied to over 300 jobs between June and October and only had about 3 solid options.

      I’m rooting for you!

    • I’m in that same boat with you. Best of luck and I hope you get the job!!!!

  • Rant: Growing ever angrier. Woman sits next to me on the metro and blasts her music: Angry. People who stroll leisurely on the metro platform: angry. Folks at work don’t respond to my emails: angry. People don’t thank me when I hold the door for them: angry. Just tired of always having this big chip on my shoulder.

    • Take a breather, bro. Life ain’t that bad…. there are more important things to get worked up about.

      Sounds like you have a job, your health, and a roof over your head. Everything else is icing.

      • BTW, not trying to troll you on a day that is clearly not off to a good start. We’ve all been there! I’ve had many days where I wanted to clock someone on the metro in the face, but then I remember all of the good stuff I’m grateful for.

        I used to have a “Fuck It” List; I’d write down all of the stuff that pissed me off. It’s surprising how gratifying it is to read off that list and say, “Fuck it!” as you check off each item. Add to the list as a new irritation emerges (but avoid putting down specific names in case a boss/frenemy comes across it).

        Plus, cheer up: you have the Xmas tree lighting to screw up your afternoon commute!

      • How do you know SeemeNow is a bro and not a sis?

    • Do you exercise every day? I find that when I really tire myself out exercising,those little things stop bothering me.

      • +100

        I stopped working out for six months because I was being lazy. I found myself stressed out and totally bitter/pissed off all the time. The tiniest things bugged me and I was stressed out all the time.

        I started running again and I felt exponentially better almost immediately. It’s amazing how much that helps.

        • So true.

          Also, there are a lot of things I dislike about DC (and yes, I did come from living in NYC for 20 years, and New York’s not perfect either), but DC has to be one of the greatest cities for jogging I’ve ever been to. Tons of great routes, and between the Mall and RCP, fantastic paths.

      • Good point. Of course, one of my biggest irritations has always been the people at the gym, so I stick to jogging or doing pushups in the park.

        • LOL, exercise calms me down too, but ironically the self-important trainers in the gym have really started pissing me off.

    • I’ve been there before, believe me.
      This helped:
      As silly as it sounds, I forced myself to think one nice thing about everyone who pissed me off as I made my way through the day. Even something as minimal as “I like her hat.” (In fact, sometimes I had to stretch so far to think of something that it became comical and would make me laugh at myself.) Even I was amazed at how much it helped defuse my anger and frustration, which really were doing nothing but making my own life worse. I couldn’t keep it up for too long but it made a difference. Worth a try anyhow.

    • I find setting aside a day for nothing but silence is helpful. People don’t realize how much the calamity of city life is noise-induced stress. Spend one day of your weekend in your place and don’t turn on the TV or stereo. Don’t talk too much. You can still do things like read and cook and quiet activities, but just giving yourself a break from the incessant noise (something I find is particularly irritating about the Metro system) will make you feel massively better.

  • Rave: I am moved and don’t have to live with my godawful roommates anymore.

    Rant: They moved last night and left the place a total disaster and I am going to be the one that has to clean that crap up.

    • Been there before. It blows being the responsible one.

    • congrats on your new place – I can totally sympathize with the bad roommate experience, and being rid of the jerks must be a great feeling!

    • If you have access to a truck (if not, try UHaul or Zipcar), load it up with everything left behind and take it straight to the dump. When they ask you if you’re a homeowner or renter at the entrance, tell them homeowner. Just dump their stuff and be done with it. No fun to have to do the work, but it might feel cathartic in some way to get rid of all their crap.

  • LUV that photo!

  • claire

    Rave: Had a great little vacation for Thanksgiving.
    Rant: Back to work as of yesterday.
    Rave: Only a two day week for me and a three day weekend starting tomorrow!

    Rant: Holiday presents are ridiculously expensive and time-consuming.
    Rave: Already know what I’m getting everyone, and I feel pretty good about my choices – will be worth it to see smiles on everyone’s faces!

  • revel: nice sunshine!
    rant: i’m terrible with confrontation, with telling people what i’m feeling. that in between place where you’re more than friends, but not a couple. does it have to be all or nothing?

    • claire

      Doesn’t have to be all or nothing, but I will say, in my experience, it really helps to put your thoughts/feelings on the table. How can another person know what you want out of a relationship (and I mean any relationship here, family, friend, lover, whatever) if you don’t tell them?

  • Rant: Not sure what to get my 1 year old nephew for the holidays. Its seems like my brother and grandparents already got him damn near everything! Any suggestions?

    • Gilt Group has a Rockabye sale today-They are kind of like rocking horses, but they are stuffed animals instead of traditional wooden rocking horses and they make noise, etc. I got my nephew one and he started using it around 10 months and still loves it at 18 months.

      I usually peruse the sample sale sites for gifts for my nephew because my parents and sister buy him a lot of the more mainstream stuff. Land of Nod and the online Moma store are also good resources for cute stuff that he may not already have.

    • My niece has at least 10000 toys (about 9999 more than I had at that age) and she gets them all from her grandparents. They bring a toy over EVERY-SINGLE-TIME they visit. I decided to be the “boring” uncle and I get her books for every occasion. Ask friends that have kids the same age and have them recommend books, I am single without kid(s) so that is what I ended up doing.

      • Not sure of your niece’s age, but here are a few recommendations:
        – Punk Farm
        – Punk Farm on Tour
        – *Anything* by Daniel Pinkwater

      • I always adored the Rainbow Fish book growing up.

      • anonymouse_dianne

        Younger kid:
        Saving Audie – true story of one dog saved from Badd Newz Kennels and now doing agility!

        for an older Kid:
        Lost Dogs by Jim Gorant

        Then take her to WARL and she can see where the dogs lived!

      • A 1-year-old might be too young for this, but a day out with their aunt or uncle might be a great present for a kid that already has everything. Find a fun event/activity/show/etc, buy them an ice cream, and there it is–a holiday present they didn’t already have.

    • Put the money you would spend and add it to his college account (assuming his parents have already started one for him). When they are that young and receive so many gifts it is really a waste to get more, and he will need the money for college later, you’d be doing him a favor. That’s what I’ve done with my neices- until they get old enough to notice from whom they do/do not get gifts, even now I give them one gift, and if I don’t hit the spending ceiling the rest gets written into a check and into the college account.

    • Give him a savings bond that matures when he’s 18, or buy him a share of Apple in a DRIP plan.

      The kid could care less what you give him now, but he’ll appreciate the money years from now. This is what I tell everyone to give my son, though nobody listens.

      You can also set up an account that only accepts deposits until he’s 18, and people can deposit money into it. Check with a financial services company – they’re more likely to help with setting something like that up than a bank would.

    • I agree with many of the others – small kids don’t know or care that you didn’t get them a toy. Money in the bank (or similar) is better.

    • I always figure a one year old won’t know the difference anyhow, so I try not to sweat it. I either go really practical – a savings bond? Or ver standard – stuffed animal, a little whatever one olds wear, or a couple of books you rememebr liking.

    • Can’t go wrong with clothing.

  • Rant: 4 days left in this office and horrible job.

    Rave: 4 days left in this office and horrible job!

  • Looking for historical tidbits, photos, antidotes, comments, etc. on the Petworth area to compile for a gift to a former resident. Believe there used to be a Butler’s Funeral Home, Green Stamp Store, Goins Carry-out, Long’s Carry-out and Freddie’s Barber Shop. If anyone wants to send photos, etc. by U S mail or a printable copy of anything over the Internet would be happy to give you credit for your submission or send you a razor thin refrigerator magnet with Charlie’s Shrimp Salad recipe on it. Looking for 1950s through 1980s but will take prior and also after. My first post, so I hope I’m not being unreasonable. Perhaps POP will be so kind as to pass on my email for those interested. Thank you.

    • cool idea! if you are in the dc area, the DC historical society, washingtoniana collection at the MLK library, the library of congress, and GW university all have good archive collections. you might be able to get some nice photos, maps, etc. Some of it’s even online.

  • Rave: Finally finished moving out of our old apartment and have everything in the new one in NE Capitol Hill/H St area.

    Rant: No time to unpack means our new place looks like we are hoarders.

    Rant 2: No dishwasher or washer/dryer in the new place, and the dog is flipping out about having to move. Going to take some getting used to for all of us.

    Rave: Saving money on rent and getting acclimated to a new neighborhood!

  • Rant: waiting for the 42/43 bus for over 15 minutes during morning rush hour when there’s no rain, no snow, and light traffic. WTF is wrong with WMATA management? About 80% of the time the bus line works fine, the other 20% of the time it’s completely fakakta….

    • I recently moved, but I used to take the 42/43 bus in the morning on a regular basis. I sympathize.

    • Well, okay, but folks in this town are so eager to jump on the “WMATA sucks” wagon that they rarely actually look for the actual reasons.

      I only say this because I once waited for a 42 in MtP for more than 30 minutes. I called the WMATA number to complain only to find out from them that the president was on the move in and around the Hilton on Connecticut (it was the national prayer breakfast or whatever.) So, not WMATA’s fault in that case.

      • I think people jump quickly on the “WMATA sucks” wagon because WMATA actually sucks and when you complain, they don’t give a rat’s ass. I think if they sucked and people complained and they actually did something about it or made an effort to respond or *something*…they wouldn’t be hated so much.

        And this is in EVERYTHING they do. Did you read the article below about a freaking ribbon cutting when they fixed some escalators? Really? Cause they fixed something that is an integral part of the system? What’s next? A freaking parade inside metro center every time a train shows up? Because, hey! It didn’t crash!


      • OK GDopplerXT in your case fine, WMATA can’t just plow their buses through the Presidential motorcade…

        But honestly….today it was sunny, little to no traffic on Columbia Road, and Connecticut Ave traffic was surprisingly light too. There was no rain. The President was not coming to visit.

        While I waited at CT/Leroy three L1 busses came along, two H2’s, and a shitload of 90-92-96’s. No 42/43’s for 10 minutes and then the 42 and 43 that appeared directly behind one-another were so full the drivers refused to stop. Another bus didn’t come along for another 5 minutes.

        Like NearUstNW says, WMATA genuinely sucks and really cares not a whit about its customers. I’ve sent in numerous complaints via the website and NEVER gotten a response.

        • Sure, sometimes things don’t work right. There are a lot of moving parts (literally) to a transit system and a lot of things beyond its control. I use Metro daily so I know that they get a lot of things wrong and I get frustrated. But the overwhelming majority of my trips are fine, which leads me to believe that people who resort to blanket statements about how much Metro sucks either have too-high expectations or they are looking for things to complain about. I don’t know if you read the Unsuck Metro blog but it is amazing at how unwilling some people are to consider any explanation apart from “because WMATA sucks”.

        • WMATA also treats Metrobus as a sort of ugly stepchild in comparison to how it treats Metrorail.

    • There may have been a traffic situation/backup further down the route which delayed the bus you were waiting for – it’s too bad that the 43 isn’t a true express/limited stop bus route. If they limited its stops, it would move much faster.

  • Rant: Co-worker going through a lot of family issues- wish I could help!

    Rave: Grabbing some dinner/desserts and dropping it off at her home.

    Rave: Cousins coming into town for a DC Christmas weekend in a couple of weeks- any ideas of DC Christmas things to do? I was thinking the ice skating rink, national christmas tree, Downtown holiday market… what else?

    • Seasons Greetings at the Botanic Garden is fun to stop by and I’ve always enjoyed ZooLights. My favorite DC area holiday activity is The Candlelight Tour of Mount Vernon; if you’re not looking for suggestions solely in DC proper, I’d definitely recommend it!

      • saf

        While you’re down that way, go see the Capitol Christmas tree – it’s way better than the one on the Ellipse.

      • em

        +1 for season’s greenings at the Botanic Garden (they are also open late on Tues/Thur and have live music)

        Mt. Vernon is also fun – and this year they have a camel as a part of the Christmas hoopla!

    • I went to the White House on a tour on Christmas Day years ago with my family, and it is one of my favorite Christmas memories. It was beautiful all decorated for Christmas! This was pre-9/11, and Im not sure how hard it is to get in there, or how long it takes, but maybe its worth looking into?

    • The Botanic Gardens (down the Hill by the Capitol) has a Christmas train display each year and festive lighting. Plus, that place is awesome to visit no matter what season it is!

    • 1. As far as your co-worker is concerned – I bet you are helping more than you know. Sometimes just knowing other people are noticing and care is as helpful as any thing. Gold Star for you!
      2. There’s always a nice Christmas display at Union Station, including a model train set up. Not too big but it’s pretty and Union Station is always impressive – and when all else fails there are restaurants (and bars) there.
      3. Check the Millenium Stage schedule at the Kennedy Center- free performances in the Grand Foyer, pretty much every day, in the early evening. It may not be directly Christmas related, but it’s a festive place and less formal than a regular KC performance.

    • It’s cheesy, but the lady and I checked out the Ice Sculpture exhibit at National Harbor last year, was pretty darn cool.

  • Rant: Almost getting hit this morning by a idiot who doesn’t know the difference between blinking red and blinking yellow lights. Dude, if we have blinking yellow and you have blinking red, you wait until all of us are gone or until one of us lets you go. YOU DO NOT TAKE TURNS!! Treat blinking reds as a stop sign until it is CLEAR to go! That Is All!

  • Rave: Looking forward to hitting Oceanaire for HH.

    • Went there for the first time for dinner the other night. It’s a little too fancy-pants for me to spend time there on a regular basis but it was really good food and cool dining environment.

      • It always makes me laugh when I read fancy-pants. I am not sure if it is you that always says it or others but it is damn funny, that and asshat/assclown.

        Anyway, yeah, it can be a bit expensive and I don’t regularly go there for dinner but they have a great happy hour that many don’t know about. Check it out.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: Still have the cold from Hell (thanks Grandpa).

    Rant: Mom’s back in the hospital. They think it’s Pneumonia.

    Rave: She’s in good spirits.

    Rave: Vendor brought cookies to work, yum!

  • Rave: People being aware of their status. Today is World Aid’s Day. Please go get checked if you do not know your status.

    Rant: AIDS

  • Holy s$&%. That gorilla is holding a ghost baby.

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