Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user BrennaLM

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.

84 Comment

  • rant: had to take a bunch of codeine for a pulled muscle
    rave: work is suddenly *amazingggg*

  • Rant: Presenting my final project for grad school on Thursday and I have so much work to do still. To make matters worse I have my period this week– the pain was so bad last night that I could neither work nor sleep. I’m an exhausted mess right now, trying to get this school work done in addition to my regular workday and praying that I don’t get hit with another wave of debilitating cramps.

    Rave: Going on a fabulous vacation when it’s all done!

    • claire

      I’ve been there. Ibu profen + heating pad. Take the ibu profen now, *before* the cramps hit for maximum effect. Caffeine can also help (dilates your blood vessels) so if you haven’t already been downing some coffee/tea, get on it.

      • Yeah, last night I forgot to take a new dose of ibuprofen before the old one from earlier in the day wore off. Then it was too late! I took some again first thing this morning and have been feeling better. This always happens at the worst times!

    • What Claire said (although if you regularly get debilitating cramps, you might already know this).

      And if you regularly get debilitating cramps, you might want to investigate Seasonale/Seasonique. (Seasonale is available as a generic; not sure about Seasonique.)

      The conventional wisdom is that oral contraceptives are supposed to make your periods less painful… but mine were still pretty damn painful (though not as bad) during the years I was on the regular kind (the ones with a week of placebo pills). I’d regularly be popping 16 ibuprofen on the first/second days, using a heating pad, etc.

      The “period” you get on regular contraceptives is actually an artificial one, and there’s no real reason you have to have it. Apparently women gynecologists had been taking the pill continuously (i.e., taking the active pills and skipping the placebo week) off-label for years before Seasonique and Seasonale came around!

      Not having periods any more has definitely improved my life. I wish I had known this was an option during the 12 or so years I was on the regular pill and suffering through miserable periods every month.

      • I’ve been wondering if I should look into that. I don’t take oral contraceptives currently (I’m a lesbian so I’m not concerned about accidental pregnancy) and hate the idea of having to take a pill everyday, but it might be worth it!

        • I can’t recommend it highly enough!

          (And almost all of the time I’ve been on the pill it’s been to control cramps rather than to prevent pregnancy.)

        • Emmaleigh504

          Seasonale/Seasonique is life changing! I highly recommend giving it a try even if you don’t need it for contraceptive purposes. I’ve been taking the generic form of Seasonale, Quasense, for ages and love it.

          Another thing that can help with cramps is upping your calcium intake right before your dot starts.

          • I resisted birth control pills too because I’m a lesbian. Seemed wasteful/weird to take birth control when pregnancy is not a risk. Started taking them around a year ago on the recommendation of my GYN because I had horrible, debilitating cramps. The pills (Loestrin) have totally worked and changed my life. (I also found out that I have ovarian cysts which is why I get the cramps.) I recommend calling your GYN to discuss.

            For pain management, Aleve and the Thermacare heat wraps really helped too. Good luck.

      • Yes yes YES to Seasonique!

        I take it mainly for hormonal migraines. My gyn told me recently that Seasonique contains hormones in the “off” week, while Seasonale does not. That may or may not affect the cramp stuff, not sure, but it was relevant to me b/c of the migraines.

        • Interesting.

          I’m on Jolessa, a generic for Seasonale, but I always skip the placebo week that comes at the end of the three-month package and just move on to the active pills in the next three-month package.

          • claire

            +1 million to all the recommendations for Seasonale/Seasonique. Surprised to see so many people on here on one or the other! I’m on Jolessa too, and it’s great! Of course, no pill is perfect for everyone, but after going through two others that messed with me (Ortho Tri-Cyclen Lo – ridiculous mood swings, Yaz – breakthrough bleeding), this one works great for me.

            Anon – I’ve been contemplating skipping the placebo week with Jolessa. No issues for you with doing that? From what I’ve read about how the pill works, it should be just fine, but it still makes me a little nervous…

    • Rave: Never having to menstruate!

      • Nature hates women.

        • Nurture does too.

          • Hear, hear.

          • whatever, y’all. it’s awesome being a woman. I love my cycle (and yes, I used to get dysmenorrhea — vomiting, cramps, fainting, the whole bit) and I love being a woman. bc pills are good for birth control and for hormonal treatment of some health issues (e.g., endometriosis), but in general, I wouldn’t recommend them. they are powerful. they cause depression, they cause you to feel differently about loved ones and even strangers, they remove you from your body. regrettably, I walked around for years in a fog because of them. hormones are what makes you a woman. if you are having issues, get to know your body and change it through diet and exercise. obviously, this won’t work for all problems, but it can help. embrace it!!!

  • Rant: My supervisors LOVE having meetings just for the sake of having meetings. They are such a waste of time.

    Rave: the weather is warming up again and the rain should be done for the day.

  • Rant: Stressing my move today

    Rave: Double-checked and everything is set and in order for it

    Rant: Fire alarm this morning

  • Blech, that happened to my neighbor last night too. Sorry you have to deal with the hassle!

    • um, i was trying to reply to a post that I no longer see…

      Rant: brain dead and/or delusional

  • austindc

    Rant and Rave (together at last!): Politely yet sternly scolded two ladies for throwing their cigarettes into the Potomac. I’m glad I said something, since this stuff usually irks me to no end. That being said, I’m not sure if it was rude of me to scold. It would be interesting to hear what others think–both smokers and non-smokers.

    Full on Rave: Early lunch of leftover barbecue. Delicious!

    • Littering is littering, “smokers”/”non-smokers” being elevated to genuine social statuses notwithstanding. Littering into one of our rivers is apostasy.

      • There’s this weird mindset that cigarette butts don’t count as trash. My girlfriend sometimes leaves them on our patio and it drives me CRAZY! On the other hand, she would never dream of throwing a plastic bottle or empty bag of chips on the ground.

        • ah

          +1. Same with smoking drivers. Why is the ashtray in the car not capable of holding your butt? And it’s not like tamping out the butt in the car is going to somehow make the car smell of cigarette smoke–it already smells that way from your smoking.

          Beyond the litter, this is also how wildfires get started.

          • Ashtrays are no longer standard in cars.

          • Yes, that too! She doesn’t smoke in my car very often, but I have to remind her to use the ashtray. I’d rather have to clean it out every once in a while than have a passenger of mine accidentally start a fire.

          • Emmaleigh504

            It’s because they keep their loose change in the ashtray.

          • Not that this excuses the littering, but Branson is correct that cars these days lack proper ashtrays — I remember noticing that the ashtray-type things in my car had little stickers on them saying something like “Not for use with cigarettes; plastic will melt.”

      • austindc

        Okay, thanks for the feedback guys! Good call, Branson–I did not mean to suggest that smokers and non-smokers were two divisions of citizenry. We are all just a bunch of DC folks. I was just wondering if there was something I was missing, like maybe someone would explain to me that cigarettes biodegrade, so it’s like tossing an apple core on the ground. But looks like no one is offering that explanation, so I’m with you guys: looting and polluting is not the way.

        • Yeah, you can’t really divide it into two distinct groups of people. I smoke approximately half a cigarette a month (in the past as many as three a month), so I can’t be classified as a non-smoker, but my actions are more consistent with someone who doesn’t smoke at all (i.e. I would never toss a butt on the ground).

  • jim_ed

    Rant: why is replacing a broken metro card so difficult? It takes 3-5 days for my personal cash to be transferred over, they can’t transfer smart benefits, and absolutely none of this can be done at the metro center offices. Also, if there’s a less helpful and more rude group of employees than the nasty people in the metro center sales office in this city, I’ve yet to run into them. Metro could save a fortune by just setting up an automated kiosk that said “no” every time you hit the help button.

    Rave: broken smart trip = free bus rides!

  • Revel: Had my interview for an international job last night and was very glad that I did it.

    Rant: I didn’t interview well and don’t think I’ll get the job. I didn’t know how to respond when interviewers were kind of condescending—they were weirdly fixated on the fact that I’m originally from the Midwest (where I haven’t lived since I was 22) and kept implying that it made them concerned that I didn’t have enough intercultural skills or sensitivities for the position. I was really taken aback by this, got flustered, and think I came off like a bit of an idiot. But I was just really surprised by how presumptive they were being. I’ve done multiple long-term stints living internationally, I’ve studied a bunch of languages, I grew up in a very international community (yes, in the Midwest!), and I wasn’t even born in the US. I felt like they saw a big 10 university on my resume and then kept insisting, no matter what I said, that it must be “really hard for me” to adjust to living in a different culture. Of course it’s hard, but I don’t think its particularly harder for me than anyone else? In fact, I think it is one of my natural strengths. Ugh.

    Revel: The interview was a good reminder that if I took the job, I’d be returning to a VERY difficult city where quality of life is pretty rough due to insane traffic and overcrowding. I’ve lived there before, but I tend to idealize my memories of living there, and their honestly in the interview reminded me that I might not love it as much I think I do. 🙂

    • Rant: oops, that was a WALL OF TEXT

      • HR does not always well represent the rest of the organization. I’d encourage you not to write off the job possibility because of this experience. If you get further along in the interview process, you’ll likely meet with people who would be your colleagues/supervisor/etc. That would give you a better idea of whether this seems to be a good fit.

        • But that’s assuming the interviewers were from HR — I got the impression that the interviewers were from the specific part of the company where Elza would be working.

          (Agreed, though, that a company/agency’s HR division is often not representative of the company/agency overall.)

    • Wow, what jerks!! I also went to a large university (although not in the midwest, it’s definitely in a more rural part of Florida) and I cannot imagine how I would react if someone treated me like I was an uncultured or backwards hick who would have issues adjusting to a different country or culture because of the name on my diplomas. Sounds like you handled it with grace though. You probably wouldn’t want to work for such presumptuous, pretentious assholes anyway.

      • In their defense, I think they were just trying to give me the opportunity to speak honestly about challenges I faced during my previous international experiences. I tried and tried to do this, but they didn’t seem satisfied by what I way saying. In truth, I just really did have positive experiences!

        • anon. gardener

          Who needs condescension? They do sound like jerks. It’s good you went on the interview – always good practice – and now you know these are probably not the kind of people you want to work with. I sure wouldn’t – that kind of snap judgement, I-know-all-about-you-because-you’re-(fill in the blank), makes me rage.

          If you’re ever in that situation again – and I hope you’re not – a good way to see what is really behind it all is to say something like, Wow, really, why do you think that is? Turn it back on them and watch the reaction.

    • Good to hear that you went on the interview… and sorry to hear that the interviewers were so prejudiced/presumptuous!

    • People who have this view of the Midwest are clearly very narrow-minded and not very well informed themselves, and in no position to judge someone else’s ability to handle different cultures.

      • I actually thought the Midwest was more diverse than it actually is, until I lived there for a summer. I was staying in North Dakota, and outside of my research team at the university I did not enounter single non-Caucasian (save for the occasional Native American). There were a lot of cultural differences that were striking as well– people were friendlier and more trusting, less judgmental and confrontational, less interested in travel, more likely to get married in their teens or early 20’s, and so forth. In general the people were very open-minded, but a lot more grounded to where they were born and what is familiar to them. Now, I’m sure there are parts of the Midwest that bear a closer resemblance to DC and the East Coast, but if you happen to be from Grand Forks ND I would have to agree that their line of questioning was appropriate. 🙂

        • Stereotype, sort of, but people from the Midwest do tend to be nicer, more polite, friendlier, more trusting, less judgmental, less confrontational, everything listed above. I would rather hire a person with THOSE characteristics. And just because Midwesterners DO tend to stay closer to home and be less likely to travel doesn’t mean that they won’t fare well in other places. They’re just content where they are.

          • Yeah, and I’m not saying there aren’t exceptions either! Elza sounds way more qualified than even your average DC resident to work internationally.

        • Emmaleigh504

          I lived in South Dakota (I know not the same state, but neighbors) for a year and besides the handful of Native Americans in my college town I saw 1 blacker person and 1 Asian person. They were both from other countries. I found all the whiteness really weird. I also did not find the people there particularly friendly. They seemed to have a lot of incorrect ideas about me because I was from the South. They were totally judged me negatively because of where I came from.

          I also encountered some weird languages barriers. Random every day stuff was difficult to communicate, the fact that they thought I was racist, not so much.

          • The cultures are very different. Many in the Midwest are reserved and stoic. Many Southern folks are boisterous and animated. Midwesterners — at least those who identify with the “suffer-in-silence” Scandinavian culture — distrust those sorts of attitudes.

            Also, there might be some political things in there too. I mean, Keith Ellison’s district is supposedly bluer than Nancy Pelosi’s. Minneapolis and some other areas in the Midwest look down on places like Arkansas and Mississippi as third world countries in terms of illiteracy rates, college degrees, voting rates, etc and lump everyone from the South together as also being uneducated, illiterate, etc. It’s sad that some in the Midwest do that, but it’s really really common.

    • How ironic that people concerned with sensitivity would have none themselves…

    • Re: “…they were weirdly fixated on the fact that I’m originally from the Midwest (where I haven’t lived since I was 22) and kept implying that it made them concerned that I didn’t have enough intercultural skills or sensitivities for the position.”

      This part struck me this way: I’m not sure that the interviewers were being presumptuous; that kind of question is giving a person the opportunity to tell them how that is not the case, in my opinion.

    • Elza- they sound like a bunch of jerks you do NOT want to work for. I’ve lived all around the country, and no single region has a monopoly on diversity and enlightenment (especially nowadays). I’m always annoyed when people who know absolutely nothing about the Midwest make pronouncements on it and offer up stereotypes. Plus, if it came to hiring, I’d take a good Badger from the University of Wisconsin over a person from a no-name school on the supposedly better coasts. [End rant] On the positive side, I like the idea of keeping the Midwest less crowded, so it is not an entirely bad thing that people hold to their stereotypes and not move to the place I consider heavenly. 🙂

    • “I’d be returning to a VERY difficult city where quality of life is pretty rough due to insane traffic and overcrowding.”

      Eh, if you’ve ever spent a significant amount of time in Northern Virginia I’d say you’re pretty well prepared. 🙂

    • Wow, that is really irritating. I grew up in the Midwest and got my degree in Intercultural Studies so I would love to chat with them. HA!

    • sorry about your interview – it’s a different situation, but after I finished my Master’s degree I had an interview with a women’s organization for a 6-month fellowship and they basically invited everyone in the entire office to drop by and interrogate me around a large conference room table where at least one person blatantly accused me of only being interested in the position so that I could secure something short-term while I would surely leave before the 6-month term was up once I found something better. That’s when I realized that even non-profits dedicated to good ideas can be victims of dysfunctional management.

    • Allison

      Attempt to make Elza feel better: Hey, at least you didn’t find out at the end of the interview your boob was hanging out of your brand new silk blouse the whole time. The all time high of interviewing moments.

  • Rant: End of dogsitting today and husband in NYC for the night. No puppy and no husband tonight? That’ll be lonely!

    Rave: Soccer game tonight!

    Rave: First eventing competition of the season this weekend- cannot wait!

  • Sometime between today and Friday I’m going to get a career changing phone call! Depending on what they say, this could be a huge rant or a huge rave. Fingers crossed.

    Rave: Whole Foods stoneground wheat crackers. Addictive.

  • Rant: Everything about my office. Siince I’ve been here I have seen more resignations/retirements than I can count. $40 for a retirement party is one thing, but calling out specific people and asking us to only pay $35 plus an expectation of a monetary contribution for a gift. I don’t work directly with the person retiring. Why should I feel obligated to go? I’m sorry but I’d much prefer a date night with my bf than a lunch with these people.

    Rave: I get to have a date night this week!

  • Rave: Four day week and I’m playing a festival in Ocean City Friday.

    Rant: I have to be in OC by 9:30 am, so I’ll be leaving pretty early Firday morning. And we have a gig in Baltimore Saturday afternoon, so I have to come home from OC Friday night.

    Rave: Two good gigs coming up this weekend!

  • rant: i’ve been struggling to adjust to a new leadership structure for the past several months and i’m finally demoralized enough to say, no, this is not working out for me.

    rave: there’s definitely another job out there for me and i’m not going to allow the current cast of characters to shake my confidence. yeah me!

  • Rant: Currently on a crowded cross country flight to San Fran, sitting next to someone who likely hasn’t bathed in a few days.

    Rave: WiFi onbard planes makes me productive!

    • claire

      Have fun in SF! Lots of great beer options – make sure to try some of the breweries that don’t make their way over here!

  • Rave: I went to the gym last night after a four-year hiatus. Let’s just say I felt good!

    Rave: Treating myself to a night in New York this weekend. It’s needed.

    Rant: Missing the ex. It’s still fresh (only been a few weeks) but just trying to go forward. He was my friend, my lover and my confidante. I know everyone says, ‘There’s plenty of fish in the sea.’ BUT… I want to counter that by saying, ‘Sure there’s plenty of good-looking fish in the sea but when you get around to finding that most are vapid, selfish, obnoxious, way too serious OR gay [ so that rules me out 🙁 ], recognize there are only a few people in this world that were made to meet you, date you, love you and potentially stay with you for the rest of our life.’ To me, it’s only a rare occurrence when you find that special someone — and I’m still trying to let that notion go.


    • Your hiatus->gym rave gives me hope. I don’t even want to try to count the years, but I swear (really!) that I am going to go this week!

    • Just to be clear, are you saying that most “good looking” – however that term is defined by you – men are “vapid, selfish, obnoxious, way too serious or gay”?
      Just asking.

      • Yup. Just an opinion, of course. My point was that it’s hard to find the whole package as it doesn’t come around too often — that’s all.

        • Roger that. The whole package is truly elusive. But you found it once so there’s hope of finding it again. Good luck to you!

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rave: Made it to a new place on the bus I don’t normally take without having a nervous breakdown.

    Rant: I have a phobia of getting lost no matter how I travel.

    Rave: Just mailed Grandpa the marmalade I made out of kumquats from his place…only a few months late.

  • Rant: Over two weeks and the DC Treasurer still has not cashed my 2011 tax payment…getting worried.

    • Sory for you, but I am glad to see your post – I am in the same boat, so maybe it’s just the slooow DC process. In comparison, I mailed my IRS check (to Hartford) the same day, 4/13; that check cleared my account on 4/17. The DC check, mailed to DC, still has not cleared.

      • novadancer

        same here. IRS cashed our check over a week ago and nothing from DC.

        • Thanks for the responses. Glad to know that I’m not the only one. It’s still strange though, considering that my property tax payment went through like lightning. What…does DC not *want* to get paid?

          • I swear they really don’t. They make it super easy to get a refund through direct deposit and it usually only takes them a day or two to do that. But if you owe them money you have to mail in a check and they don’t cash it for weeks. It’s really messed up. I always send my DC tax payment certified mail just to avoid the stress about them not cashing the check for awhile.

  • Missing my mother, who would have been 81 today. She died four years ago on Mothers day. She was a great mom, and I try to channel her with my own kids.

    • My grandfather’s birthday would have been today also. I’m going to give my grandmother a call today– I’ll bet she’s been thinking about him too.

    • Sorry for your loss, Soozles. Hope you can move through this time thinking of all the great memories you have of your mother and how she inspires you today.

  • Rave: Bought myself a little Tomos moped. Just repainted it matte black. Happy Birthday, self!

    Rant: Haven’t told my parents yet. Had a scary accident on a scooter five yrs ago and I know they’ll worry. 🙁 Feeling very guilty.

    Rave2: Two of my five classes were cancelled today due to field trips and testing. I got a TON of work done, and got to surf the net for a half hour. And the hallways are quiet because the 4th graders are gone for the day! Have been playing the Michael McDonald pandora station for over 2 hrs. Best day ever. 🙂

  • Rant: Jim Graham ignoring his constituents and not supporting Sunday Liquor sales. I think it is time for some new representation.

    • Your rant assumes facts not in evidence – i.e., that most of Jim Graham’s constituents do support Sunday liquor sales. Maybe they do; maybe they don’t. I haven’t seen the numbers on way or the other.

  • Rave: May Day! And all the happy childhood memories it triggers – weaving paper may baskets with my mom, wandering around picking violets, butter cups and whatever else happened to be flowering at the time, and leaving the flower-filled baskets on neighbors’ doorsteps before ringing the bell and running away to hide.

    Rant: Thinking about past May Days makes me seriously miss my parents and childhood home!

    • Awwe, good memories! I’m glad I’m not the only person who celebrated May Day growing up. Sometimes I feel like it is/was a very Midwestern thing. This is one of the first years I have NOT celebrated in some way!

  • Are there any low-key places that still show boxing? (I need a place to watch fight on Saturday)

  • I have alot to do today, but I can’t seem to focus on work at all today. I’m seriously playing games on my phone rather than getting work done – help!

  • Rave: the Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappucino at Starbucks. I feel five pounds heavier but oh, was it tasty!

  • Rant: While walking my dog tonight on 3rd and Longfellow two dogs (a pit bull and lab mix) came bounding off the front porch in full on attack mode. The owner just stood there, calling the dogs. I’m so tired of this happening to me and my pup — it’s happened three times in the past week! I do not understand the drive to own a huge dog and not take the time to train it. My dog is 75 pounds and can hold his own, but I’d rather not have him get in a fight, because he’s so well behaved.

    Rant #2: my husband is in Tunis, Tunisia for another week! I miss him and I’m very grumpy!

    Rave: The dalias that I planted are coming up — Whooo!

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