Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user *tinadelarosa

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.

99 Comment

  • I happened to be in Georgetown yesterday and I have to say that my free PoP Red Velvet cupcake from Sprinkle’s was awesome. Way better than those other cupcakes you can get in that part of the city. Thanks PoPs!

  • Have you guys tried the LED 20 minute teeth whitening treatment? Does it work? If it does, where did you go?

  • Rave: Been sticking to my ‘new’ healthy lifestyle since November 2011 and feeling great. It doesn’t feel so new anymore, it just feels normal.

    Rant/Rave: Joined a dating webste. Here goes nothing…

    Rave: I like reading the Sweet City Ride thread of car enthusiasts. I don’t know squat about cars but I appreciate how much other people appreciate/know about them.

    Rant: Looooooooooong day ahead of me.

  • rant – blood pressure is out of control
    rave – exercise regiment is holding steady, ditching cigarettes tomorrow.
    rant – i am going to be one mean SOB for the next few weeks.

    • If you have health insurance and haven’t already done this, check to see if they have smoking cessation programs. You might be able to get discounts on medication, classes, and counselors.

      • Congrats on getting healthy. Regarding this advice, be careful about telling insurance you are a smoker. Might come back to bite you if you are looking to get life insurance later on

        • Conversely, if you lie to your insurance company about smoking (e.g. answering “no” to the smoking question on your primary care physician’s questionnaire), and you come down with a smoking-related illness, they could technically withhold payment for your treatment(s). I’m not sure how common this is, but I believe it’s in the fine print of most insurance plans.

          • Hopefully all this nonsense will go away with the Affordable Care Act

          • No. Denying coverage outright (or making it impossibly unaffordable) because of a pre-existing condition is absolute nonsense. Denying payment for an illness directly resulting from an activity that you lied to your insurance company about so that you could avoid having to pay for the increased risk it poses is not nonsense. There’s an important distinction there.

    • You might consider the gum. I’m on my fourth week of quitting after 12 years smoking a pack or two a day, and this time has been a breeze.

      It will be interesting to see what happens when I taper the gum, but at least I’ve broken the cigarette urge for now. The CVS brand gum bought in VA is so much cheaper than smoking ever was.

      • Is the gum effective even when drinking booze? I can go without a cigarette all day without gum. Give me a few beers or cocktails, and I will smoke immediately. Bummer.

        • So far, it has been. I drink pretty regularly as well, and I find myself chewing more often when I am, but haven’t felt the need for a smoke yet.

          You’re not supposed to eat or drink for a short time before or after ( I’m assuming to maximize the effect) but it hasn’t seemed to hurt me so far aside from me chewing more than I should. My system is pretty nicotine tolerant though.

          When you first try the gum you feel some pretty weird sensations (tingling, throat catching a bit, stuff like that) but I was chewing to much and toned it down. I adjusted pretty quickly and haven’t experienced it since.

          • “too much” I mean, and by that, I mean chewing too vigorously. You’re only supposed to chew a few times then hold it in your mouth for awhile. I kept forgetting that it wasn’t real gum and found myself chewing out all the nicotine in a matter of seconds. I’m using the 4mg, if that helps.

      • I’m picking up some gum tonight after my self-imposed run, but i know it’s still going to suck. I live with a few smokers, and i’m a regular drinker, so I think it’ll be a matter of identifying and being aware of my “triggers”. i’ve been a pack a day smoker for 10 years…enough is ENOUGH.

        • I quit 4 weeks ago and it’s been easy as well. Just make sure you’re in the right frame of mind and it will work. Is that cig so worth it, you’re willing to continue smoking for the rest of your life for it? Just don’t do it. I smoked for 27 freaking years. take care of it now. You’ll be so happy you did.

    • Under the Affordable Care Act, smoking cessation programs are actually considered a required preventive care service, so certain plans are required to provide it without any copays. If you have health insurance, you might want to check that out.

    • One other thing to consider, if you haven’t already, is getting checked for sleep apnea. (Do you snore?) There is a connection between hard to manage BP and sleep apnea.

  • rant: d-bags at work who think their time is more important than mine. like showing up for meetings 30 minutes late. or expecting me to ‘stand by’ (and btw, using these stupid corporate phrases makes me want to punch people) while they go off and do whatever. so over work despite my efforts to try to stay positive about this soul sucking dump.

    rave: the weather
    related rant: seeing as how i’m on ‘stand by’ with said d-bags, i may not get to enjoy it. grrr.

    • me

      We must work with the same people. 😉

      • @me: ha! though many of my friends deal with the same things, so it seems like par for the course in many dc offices.

        @mj: hilarious. thank you for the constructive feedback. i’ll look at things from the 30,000 foot level and cobble together a back of the envelope strategy for dealing with this conundrum.

        @honey badger: offline is the WORST.

        my husband once recommended ‘corporate jargon bingo’ – so you put all these stupid corporate catch phrases on a bingo card, take it to a meeting and see if you can get ‘bingo’ by the end.

    • Why don’t you deconflictize the situation by messaging the impactfulness on your bandwidth of their misprioritzation?

      Corporate life blows.

      • My least favorite phrase in corporate speak is when you’re in a meeting and someone suggests that you take a topic “offline”. We’re not computers. We’re people. There is no online or offline. Ugh. It’s really minor, but that one drives me crazy.

      • “Going forward” makes me want to claw my eyes out.

    • I used to work in a small non-profit and they brought in a corporate person to try and make us more professional. First of all, it completely FAILED. Secondly, she was all about the corporate terms, which I now HATE. Especially the word “task”, and when people sign their e-mails “best” or “regards”. She was also the ONLY PERSON in my entire four years there to EVER use an inter-office envelope!

    • http://doucheyaccountguy.tumblr.com/ — Cracks me up because I think I’ve heard all of these in my office.

  • Rave: Powered through last night’s run, even though after half a mile I felt like giving up. I guess upping the speed wasn’t the best idea, but I did it!

    Rave: Today is shaping up to be way better and more in control than yesterday.

    No rant today. Pretty great feeling!

  • Rant: toxic person at work who creates all kinds of drama and bad feelings everywhere.

    Rave: everyone else in my life.

  • Rant: Need to buy two suits
    Rant: Where can I buy a $300-$400 suit without looking like I’m going to my high school band concert?
    Rant: I hate being followed around by dudes trying to sell me stuff. What is this, rug sales in Turkey?
    Rant: Probably the best way to look better in a suit is to drop 20 pounds.
    Rave: Wife somehow has access to coupons for like every store within 100 miles.

    • Jos A Bank sometimes runs a 2-for-1 or 3-for-1 suit sale, and their regular sales are pretty good, too. Getting it well tailored will help avoid the high-school-band look.

      • Joseph A. Banks doesn’t sell the greatest stuff, but the sales can be pretty good. Agree with whoever suggested that you shell out for a decent tailor. Also, you may still find a few decent suits remaining at post-Christmas sale prices at Saks or Nordstrom. More expensive, but much nicer. Also try the Brooks Brothers website — they’re offering suits at 50% off, though the pickings are slim.

        • I agree with this. You can often find good deals at nordstrom rack on suits that are significantly marked down. I have gotten two really nice suits there for less than 500 bucks.

          Also – check your thread counts on the suits. The better wool suits are super 100s and above. If all else fails, you won’t look like an a** if you buy a suit at Men’s wearhouse or Jos. A. Bank. Just stick to a traditional bankers color and you will be ok.

          • You can get good 100% wool jackets at JC Penneys. You just have to know what to look for. Take a wool jacket, nice cuffed trousers, and add a repeating pattern/Ivy League tie, and voila! Or so says my dad, who also has Custom Shop and Brooks Brothers clothes aplenty. Nice and tasteful doesn’t have to equal crazy expensive!

          • My one and only suit is from JC Penney. It looks fine — not splendid, not awful, but fine.
            (maybe I should have commented as anonymous)

        • The cost of a suit alone tells you nothing about quality. I think the most important things to consider are:

          The fabric: You want Extra Fine Merino Wool. No synthetics, no blends.

          The style: choose a style and cut that is flattering to your figure. I find that most American suits are cut for the average (i.e. portly) American gentleman, so I usually look for an English or Italian cut.

          Proper tailoring is essential. No suit will fit you properly off the rack. Remember that tailoring can take two weeks or longer and isn’t cheap.

        • Incidentally, Jos A Bank makes excellent shirts. Their Traveller’s dress shirts are consistently ranked #1 dress shirt by Consumer Reports. Also, their Tailored shirts fit my athletic figure well.

          The rub is that the list price on these shirts is $87.50 each, but you can pick them up at the Leesburg outlet for between twenty and forty bucks apiece.

    • It’s usually a long shot, but H&M sometimes (though infrequently) has nice enough looking suits. Not sure how much Zara charges, but they might be reasonable too.

      • me

        As far as Zara goes, they do have some spiffy-looking suits, but a) they’re not horribly professional, and b) you’ve got to be pretty slender to fit in them. (As told to me by 3 different guys I know.)

    • For suits try the leesburg outlets, at Barney’s you can probably find a nice normal Hickey Freeman (i.e. not their lower end lines) for 300-500 in your size… it may take a few trips, but it is probably worth it.

      No reason to go to Joseph A Banks, if you dont have to – but typically they have better suits than Macy’s. Their higher end suits are decent – just usually cut big.

      If you can go up to 500-600, suitsupply.com has some nice ones.

      And, of course, visit Nordstrom Rack frequently to see what they have.

      The key, whether you get a Hickey Freeman suit or a Joseph A Bank suit is to get it well tailored.

  • Rant: Incompetent person at work is making my job so much harder
    Rant: Said incompetent person has somehow endeared themselves to the boss so I can’t complain about their incompetence

    Rave: last semester of grad school!

  • Rave – two friends signed up for Iceland trip to see (hopefully) the aurora boreallis! I finally got all tickets & rental booked.

    Rant – It took about 10 total hours of research & online work – Icelandair website is really bad.

    • have fun! I went to Iceland in Sept. 2010 and had a great time.

      My rant is that a girl I went to college with died yesterday. She was only 28. Cancer sucks. And while we weren’t super close, I’m sad the world is without her and sad for her close friends and family mourning her loss.

    • awesome! i went to iceland back in october and unforunately it was too cloudy to see the aurora. i did see it in the airplane flying in though!

      make sure you give yourself plenty of time at the blue lagoon!!

      • I’m debating the Blue Lagoon. I’ve been to places with similar expensive spa-type pools (Italy, Idaho, Wyoming) only to find great natural free places half mile away where all the locals go. It costs nearly $50.00 – do you think it’s really worth it? We do have a car, so can get to more natural hot springs.

  • me

    Rant/Rave: Have lost my intended weight (slowly, over the past year or so), but have also reached the point where if I lose much more, I may get into that area of looking unhealthy. Which sucks, because I’m on a roll, and I’d always like to lose more, but maybe losing more isn’t realistic… I don’t know.

    Rave: My dad gave me some homemade candy canes (though, not made by him) earlier this month, and they are the best things I’ve ever tasted. It’s a good thing I have a limited supply.

    • Congrats! However, nothing is more beautiful than a truly radiant, healthy looking person. There is no reason to keep losing for the sake of being on a roll- maybe find other gratifying ways to make yourself feel better, like a new hobby or reconnecting with old friends? There are always ways to improve your life, and you don’t want to look like a zombie/stick figure anyhow 😛

    • Assuming that you used a combination of diet and exercise to lose weight, try keeping up your exercise schedule and just adding in more food to keep your weight where it is now. You’ll still feel the sense of accomplishment that comes with being fit, but you won’t lose too much weight and start to look unhealthy.

    • Congrats!! Forget about worrying if you ‘look’ unhealthy just don’t BE unhealthy!! Of course, I realize looking unhealthy isn’t exactly fun. 😉 Sounds like you’re already making the right decisions though. Keep up the healthy living!

    • SouthwestDC

      I’m in a similar situation. I lost 5 pounds over the past four months by sticking to a 1200 calorie diet and getting more exercise. Once I hit 110 pounds (3 more to go) I think I should stop; my clothes are getting loose and I don’t feel like buying new ones! But I don’t feel deprived on the restricted diet, and the exercise makes me feel so much better.

  • Rant: After our morning walk, my new dog (been with me for 3.5 weeks) sometimes doesn’t want to come inside. He gets stubborn at the building’s main entrance and will just stop and stare at you no matter how much cheery coaxing you try and give. If I haven’t run out of treats, I can usually lure him in with a treat. But then he does it all over again. He bolts up the stairs but puts on the brakes in front of our door. This morning I was inside, he was outside, and I could NOT get him in. I needed to get ready for work so finally I picked him up and brought him in. He’s fine once he gets inside. His behavior makes me feel like I’m a bad dog parent and that he doesn’t want to be inside my home. 🙁

    • ha, dog owners are cute. it’s an animal, dude. MAKE the dog go inside. I’m not talking abuse it, but it has no idea what you’re doing when you coo at it. it probably thinks you like what it’s doing. start taking the attitude that the dog is yours and it is meant to obey you and maybe it actually will. works with horses, anyway.

      • ^This. The dog is putting it’s needs above yours which means you’re coddling it too much. This isn’t a child that will grow into a thinking adult, it’s a dog that needs to be taught the boundaries of behavior so that it feels safe.

        • sorry. my dog is not a dog. she is a baby. haha. kidding… but i know i have a bit of a problem with this 🙁

        • +1 My boyfriend’s parents’ dog refuses to move unless she is with his mom, and is free to do basically whatever she likes. She’s very moody and spoiled as a result. They live in Europe, so they take their dog EVERYWHERE including to nice restaurants. Inside. I was flabbergasted…but I’m a cat person.

    • Maybe there is something scary about your building entrance? My dog has balked at stone lions, certain checkered or striped shapes, even a reflection. Get down on his level and look from a dog’s point of view. Otherwise, try a really super special-occasion toy that you keep in your pocket and only give him when you get through the door. (This could be an old sock tied in a knot.)

    • Is there any commonality about the times he does not want to go inside? The fact that he only does it sometimes would indicate there is some reason for those specific times. You could also try calling in or emailng the Animal House show at WAMU – it’s on either Sat or Sun around noon. Dr. Gary Weitzman of WARL answers questions like this every week. You could even try emailing him. I’m pretty sure his email address is on the WARL site.

    • I notice my dog does this sometimes because she knows I am going to be leaving soon… and she has a bit of sep anxiety.

      • okay, y’all need tough love dog whisperer style. any time your dog has anxiety, it’s YOUR anxiety (with the caveat that if you just adopted an abused dog it’s different). there is no way your dog *knows* you’re leaving. it doesn’t understand your suitcase, I swear. it understands your body language and tone of voice and your own anxiety about your dog having anxiety. it’s the exact same way with children. as soon as you realize you are the master of your dog, your dog will be happier. it wants a master that controls it. if not, you should set it free.

  • Revel: Barcelona v. Valencia tomorrow.
    Rant: It’s at 3:00 PM

  • Rant: I have decided DC only enforces laws against people that it knows will comply. The house behind mine is a literal rat’s nest and obvious illegal tenament with 15 people living in a 3 bedroom. We have called several times to the appropriate authorities to no avail. Yet, in unrelated news, I get slapped with a fat ticket the day after my inspection on my car expired.

    Double Rant: My wife is going to read this and remind me that she told me 3 times to take care of my inspection several weeks ago.

    Rave: It is supposed to be beautiful today and I am gonna go for a long run and count my blessings.

    • Call your council person’s office repeatedly. Every couple of months or so. Convince neighbors to do the same. Don’t be a douche, just say it’s unacceptable.

  • Rant: My first grad school research paper is due on Sunday and I have no idea on what to write it on. I haven’t written a reasearch paper in almost 20 years.

    Rave: Being back in school is kind of fun and I’m getting used to the discipline of it and taking online courses.

    • You have a paper due on Superbowl Sunday. Prof sounds like a communist. This isn’t Russia, is it, Danny?

      • 🙂

        It was assigned yesterday and it’s due on Sunday. I’m planning to get it done by Friday. Right now I have lots to read and a final project for my research class due Friday.

  • Rave: Date tonight, we’re getting Korean food. Any recommendations for good restaurants in Annandale?

    Rant: I’m a grown-ass woman and I still get shy on dates. Sigh.

    • If you are open to non-BBQ, I highly recommend Lighthouse Tofu, which is on the Annandale/Falls Church border. To Sok Jip is another option. For Korean bbq, there is Yechon and Honey Pig. If you’re in the mood for Korean style fried chicken, Bon Chon is pretty good too.

    • I second Lighthouse Tofu. I’ve been to the one in Wheaton, and it’s awesome.

    • I also agree with Lighthouse Tofu. My husband and I were actually talking about this place an hour ago! Their Korean potato pancake is amazing.

  • rave: snuggling with my pup in the morning

    rave: possible new opportunities

    rant: being terrified of change… SCARY!!!!@@

    rant: too much to do at once!!!

    rave: still make time to peruse PoP

  • Honey Pig in Annandale

  • Rave: I’m finally ready to get a moped again. Looking at the Tomos Sprint or ST. Liking the guys up at Hagerstown Moped, but… it’s in Hagerstown.
    Rant: I do *not* want to play fix-it with my moped this time around, but I can’t seem to find a shop in the city that will work on a Tomos. Hagerstown guys say most people in DC bring theirs all the way up to the shop to get it worked on… but then I’ll have to install a trailor hitch and all kinds of crap on my car… ugh I’m confused.

    (Any advice is welcome!)

    • Have you tried Modern Classics? I’ve always liked them, and they’ve always got a variety of makes in the yard when I’ve stopped by.

    • There’s a hidden moped shop by the Brentwood Home depot, but they have nice inventory inside.

  • Rave: Had DC Brau’s Oak Barreled PQP last night at Boundary Stone – Holy Awesome beer. Seriously, stalk down the future Monday night releases over the next few weeks, this beer is worth it.

    Rant: Why does the WashPost insist on celebrating the Redskins last Super Bowl for two weeks? It’s on the sports page every freaking day. We get it, it was awesome 20 years ago, I certainly remember it. But seriously, it was 20 years ago. Celebrating it so much now just reminds us of how horrible they have been over the last 20 years.

    • Because the Post doesn’t care about the Super Bowl, without the Redskins or even the Ravens (our ‘other team’, when it’s convenient.)

  • Rant: mom emailed me this morning to tell me she’s putting my cat down. While I understand her reasons, I’m still super sad. Is it ridiculous to take the afternoon off to go home and have a good cry?

  • Rant: Around 9:15pm, I paid the parking machine one dollar, (you have to pay until 10 according to the SIGN) before going to The Hamilton downtown. Once inside, I discovered that they don’t have a happy hour. I wasn’t willing to pay $6.20 for a beer, so I decided to fill out an application there instead.
    Rave: The hostess was really nice.
    Rant: Upon exiting, (minutes later) I encountered a rather grouchy militant police officer writing my car a ticket. Confused, I approached him, telling him that I had paid for my parking spot. He points to a rather wrinkled and illegible sign at the end of the block that read something about an emergency and you can’t park between a certain time. He proceeded to give the restr of the cars on the block tickets. A random asian bouncer looking guy popped up and said, “at least you’re not being towed, we are towing all of these cars. At least you don’t have to pay 200 dollars to get it out of the tow lot”
    Glad that I wasn’t towed but really pissed at being unemployed, trying to get a job only to come out to a 50 dollar ticket on my car. Those signs are really misleading. I’m convinced that they don’t want us driving in DC.
    Rave: Pissed about the ticket and wanting to meet other pissed people, I decided to go to Occupy DC at McPherson Square. Once there, I met a really chill guy who said he biked from Maine to DC. Drove him to Freedom Plaza where his tent set-up was. Met other interesting characters there, as well as some rather belligerant rats.

    • Unemployed, how do you feel about working in the restaurant industry…at one of the few four-star places in the area? Go check out Restaurant Eve in Old Town. (The more people that get hired there the sooner my boyfriend can move on…he’s been there for 3.5 years but can’t leave until there are enough servers).

      • I feel great about anyone who will hire me! Thanks for that tip! I will get no down there as soon as possible. It is a long commute from me, As I’m in maryland, but i need something asap! thanks!

  • Revel: that picture by tinadelarosa is GORGEOUS

  • Rant: Never again buying tights from H&M! I mean, really, I couldn’t expect much but was hoping I could wear them more than TWICE! Eesh.

    Rave: I got an AWESOME coat from The Loft this weekend – originally $119, marked down to $25. Dark green with fur collar, its my new power coat.

    Rant: Boyfriend currently working his 14th day in a row. No joke. He’s been with the place for 3+ years and has been very loyal but they keep screwing him over.

    Rave: Leave promptly at 5 to play outside. :o)

  • Rant: Mother Effin Sherman Avenue!!! I dont think my car can survive this!!

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