Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user ekelly80

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 and no need to correct people’s grammar. This is a place to vent and/or rejoice about daily life in DC.

117 Comment

  • Rave: My wife is back from Napa Valley.

  • alxindc

    Rave: my colleague brought some tres leches cake, and I had strawberries to top it with. Yummy-yummy…

    Rant: the AC didn’t work for over a year at the office, and now that it started working, it is 60F, blowing like arctic circle winds over my head.

  • Rave: Wegman’s! Went to the new one in Columbia this weekend. It was pretty crowded, but I had no trouble finding everything I needed (and then some!) Really quick check out too. The staff were all very helpful and friendly. Giant and Safeway could learn a thing or two from this chain.

    • We went to that one to grab a ready-made dinner last Tuesday, and you couldn’t even get down the aisles. The prices and selection, however, are hard to beat.

    • We love us some Wegmans. Go to the PG County one (which isn’t as nice as the others I’ve been to) and you can also go to Costco – a gas station having Costco!

      Go to the Wegmans in Fairfax, you can eat at Saravana Palace first. We go often and I’m a proponent of Wegmans starting “Urban Wegmans”, smaller outlets in cities to compete with the total crap stores we have.

      • I’ve been to the one in PG County, and almost got lost trying to find my way out of the parking lot! The Columbia one is much nicer. And they have an escalator for shopping carts! That was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.

        • …they have those at Target.

          The PG one isn’t as nice as any of the others I’ve been to – I wouldn’t schlep to Columbia, though, when Fairfax is a nice store. I’m sure it’s wonderful, though – friends in Columbia have been counting down. I’d be happy with a second Trader Joes in DC!

        • saf

          Dude, have you not been to the Columbia Heights Target?

      • saf

        “Wegmans starting “Urban Wegmans”, smaller outlets in cities ”

        Wegmans didn’t open its first superstore until 1980. Before that, they had plenty of nice, small, urban store. All those stores are closed now.

  • RANT: Woman in my office building got on elevator with me this morning and said “SIX.” I gave her a “go to hell” look. Use your manners and say “six, please” and maybe I will bush the button for you. Until then, I will not.

    • I would start shouting out random numbers as well. “Eight!” “32!”

      • HA! I actually did this once. It was just a bad morning, tired, headache, etc., and this guy gets on and says ‘eight’ in this really curt tone. So I kind of yelled ‘forty-two’ right at him (the building was twelve stories or so). My buddy/coworker couldn’t help himself and started laughing, the guy just got red in the face and leaned over to push the button himself. I felt bad about it later, but it was funny at the time.

      • That’s a great idea! Made me laugh out loud. Got a serious visual/aural image of it.

  • Rant: Life transitions are so hard. I’m trying to stay positive, but I can’t help feeling cynical and not in control.

    Rave: Dominican Republic!

  • Rave: Trip to Iceland this October! Looking for suggestions for things to do/places to visit

    Rant: It’s Monday

    • In Iceland, we went to Fish Market for a nice dinner down near the wharf. Pricey, but so is everything in Iceland. We really wanted to go whale watching, but the waters were too rough to go out, but I’d still recommend doing it!

      Have a great trip!!

    • I did the glacier walk day tour which was really awesome. It wasn’t so much a full on hike (depending on your fitness level I guess) but I loved it anyway. They also stopped at several waterfalls and the guide was great. I rented a car for one day and drove to Thingalir national park (about 2 hours from Reykjavik) and some other areas. Very beautiful, waterfalls and rainbows galore. There is a ton to do in Iceland, so it depends how much time you have and what your priorities are, but you really can’t go wrong.

    • binpetworth

      You have to do the Blue Lagoon. That 98 degree water will feel extra fabulous when you step out into the 35 degree air in your bathing suit before dipping in.

    • Thanks all for the great suggestions!!!

    • The 871 +/-2 settlement museum in Rekyavik is pretty interesting.

    • I went in Feb. – here is a link to the apt. we rented which was perfect. http://www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p329618

      Don’t miss the Icelandic Phallological Museum and the The National Museum of Iceland is one of the best museums I’ve ever visited, and that includes growing up in the Smithsonian. Comprehensive but never overwhelming, exceptionally well curated. Give yourself at least two hours and expect your brain to be full after.

      Definitely visit Kjarvalsstadir – for the extraordinary paintings of Johannes S. Kjarval. Instead of dining out, we bought a lot of local foods at the weekend market in Reykjavik – gravlax (the best I’ve ever tasted) smoked lamb belly, lamb headcheese/souse, Icelandic fish balls and we had a feast on that We also made our own stew of local meat.

    • We did the Golden Circle tour, which included Gulfoss Waterfall, Geysir, Thingvellir National Park, and a stop at a thermal spa. It was a great way to do a lot in one day. We really enjoyed horseback riding, as well (it was fun and a great way to see the terrain). I’ll second the Fish Market recommendation and add a recommendation for Baejarins Beztu Pylsur for a cheap meal. It’s a hot dog stand that doesn’t look like anything, but is supposedly the most popular restaurant in Iceland (Bill Clinton famously ate there). If you’re at all into nightlife, Reykjavik has tons of bars/pubs/clubs and Baejarins Beztu is a great stop for late night/early morning eats. I’ll also second the Blue Lagoon recommendation and add that, in addition to just going there, I highly recommend getting a massage. You float on a thin mat while receving the massage. It’s amazing.

      Also, the people there are extremely friendly. We encountered a good mix of native Icelanders, tourists from throughout Europe, people from the U.S. who have lived there for years and European college students working there during their breaks from school. Everyone was amazingly nice and we were able to get good recommendations for bars, restaurants, etc.

  • Rave: Made an awesome strawberry rhubarb pie for family that was in town.

    Rant: Hoped to have leftovers, but they ate it all up.

  • claire

    Rave: Productive and fun weekend!
    Rave: Boyfriend back in town.
    Rave: Bourbon cherry pie.

    Rant: Found out this morning that I’ll have to give up one of my work computers to one of our interns this week. Just sharing my office with so many people was getting bad enough, but I actually need that computer to get some things done!

  • Rant: I probably shouldn’t complain about this, but I don’t have anything to do at work. I feel guilty surfing the web, but since my boss is on vacation she left me little to do. I finished what I needed to get done, but now I’m stumped as to what I should do.

    Rave/Rant: Waiting on how I did on a job interview last week…keeping my fingers crossed!

    Rave: Can’t wait to go berry/fruit picking this weekend in PA!

  • Rant: Trying to find a one-bedroom apartment in the Shaw/Logan/U St area. Things are either extremely expensive or those which are relatively good priced are so difficult to get!
    Rave: Awesome weekend visiting with my family on my parents’ boat!

  • RAVE: Just received a counter offer on our Takoma Park condo, and we’re in negotiations. SO EXCITED!!!!!

    Rant: Already starting the process of calling moving companies, getting condo insurance.. CHA CHING….

    • You should use Bookstore Movers. I’ve used them along with several folks in my office. http://bookstoremovers.com/

      • Based on the PoP forum post earlier this month, Bookstore Movers was the first group I called. They’re totally booked for the month of July! They provided some recommendations of other companies to use.

        Other moving company suggestions are appreciated!

        • I loved loved loved working with Great Scott–they stayed on time/budget and the guys were great. Good luck!

          • I love Bookstore Movers, and I’d also recommend Haul-zing. I’ve used them before, as have several friends, and we’ve all had good experiences. (www.haulzing.com/)

          • novadancer

            we ended up using Olympia Movers (per GS’s recommendation) back in 2010 when Great Scott (our first choice) was totally booked.

        • We just used A.L.S. movers and were very pleased. Very responsive and affordable and the guys that did the actual moving were really careful. Would definitely use them again!

  • I’m kicking around the idea of getting out of town with my kindergartener this summer. Just a night or two, to do or see something super cool and memorable within driving distance. Any recommendations?

    • Luray Caverns? i think only 1.5 hrs away.

    • Luray caverns was actually surprisingly cool (temperature-wise, as well, which helps on hot days), and an easy drive. I took my kindergarten class there and the kids really dug it.

      The beach is always a good summer escape as well. Not super close, but doable.

      • Hah! jinx, Maria! Buy me a coke!

        • Wow. Jinx buy me a coke. While you are anonymous you have now revealed yourself to be at least old enough to remember and quote mid-80’s SNL skits. I say the same thing, by the way.

          • I’m not anonymous! I’m zrc!

            And yes, I’m getting older…I’m 35. But mid-80s SNL is pretty genius even decades later. Land Shark, Buckwheat has been shot, and the Blues Brothers all hold up very well even to the new generation.

      • i’m so confused….

    • West Virginia is pretty close. Berkeley Springs is a nice vacation spot.

    • This is probably more of just a day trip, but go to Clavert Cliffs State Park on the Bay and look for sharks’ teeth and fossils on the beach

  • Rave: Beautiful Monday.

    Rave: My boyfriend and I have worked things out. Regardless that I am moving north this coming winter, he said he is sick of planning and just wants to be with me. I am glad we love each other and can enjoy each other’s company until the move. I do sometimes worry that when I do move, he might decide it’s better to call it quits…. who knows. Things are good for now, so whatever.

    Rant: Metro is horrible.

  • Rant: No Wegman’s in DC

    Rant: It’s hot out and I’m cranky

  • talula

    Rant: Heard rumors that Radius Pizza in Mt Pleasant is closed. I really liked that place 🙁 Has anyone walked by it this weekend that can confirm/deny the rumor? I’ve been out of town most of the weekend.

    Rant: Weekends are too short. I need a vacation.

    Rave: Weekend getaway coming up in 5 days!

    • It was definitely closed when my boyfriend and I tried to go there on Friday night. We ended up at Tonic instead which was fine, but we really wanted pizza!

      • talula

        What a bummer. I wonder what happened? They always seemed busy and had good food. Seems odd that they would suddenly shut their doors.

  • Rave: We’re under contract for a house on Seaton Place! First time homebuyers 🙂

    No rants, just rave, rave, rave!

  • When I ask someone to help me or do something for me I say “please.” Its called manners.

  • rant: slacker employees who take advantage of me and the company.

    rave: I now get to practice being a hard ass.

  • binpetworth

    Rave: Managed to find the exact match for the off-white paint in my kitchen to do some touch-up painting this weekend.

    Rave: Annie’s Ace Hardware–where I got the paint. Love that place!

    Not a rant/rave but a question: Has anyone tried the little ice cream shop on Upshur (next to the old King & I)? I’ve been looking for a good local ice cream spot, but haven’t stopped in yet.

    • I took my three year old nephew there for ice cream. Even he was upset about the lack of selection. It took over 10 minutes to get ice cream even though we were the only ones in the ice cream line. Their half smokes smelled great.

  • Question: Where can I donate old sheets? Do any local animal shelters take them?

    • Yes, the animal shelters will happily take them.

      • Allison

        Do you think an animal shelter would like a bathmat? It’s not in poor condition, it just doesn’t match my new (entirely vintage powder blue–not by choice) bathroom. I thought a doggie might like to sit on it.

  • Rant: Ummountable_Boot_Volume error on my laptop Saturday night.
    Rave: I was able to fix it relatively easy.
    Rant: I lost all data on my laptop. Yes, I know there were other ways to do it but what is done is done.
    Rave: Given the age and use my laptop gets, I saw this happening and took all of my music (trust me, it is a lot) off and put it on flash drives.
    Rant/Rave: I basically now have a “brand new laptop”.
    Super Rave: This is the first issue I have had with my laptop since I bought it 10 years ago. Yes, my Gateway Athlon 64 laptop is 10 years old. I think this may have been my best purchase ever.

  • Rant: Job interviews are quite possibly the slowest processes in the world.

    Rant: More annoying monkey work at current job.

    Rave: Bike injuries are healed enough to get back to working out, after a two week hiatus.

  • Rave: I finally have a nice spot to grill and a new grill. I don’t foresee cooking inside all summer long.

  • Rave: homemade ice cream. Made coffee stracciatella and red velvet cake ice cream this weekend, company raaaaved about it.

    Rant: lots of homemade ice cream left over.

    Rave: having a skinny husband that will eat all of in today and tomorrow so it will be gone! He doesn’t eat coffee, though….so I made an affogato with it last night. yummmm

    • Care to share the coffee stracciatella recipe?

    • Red velvet ice cream: add a tiny pinch of cocoa powder and an entire bottle of red food coloring to plain ice cream 🙂

      • no, add cream cheese to the base and red velvet cake (with frosting) after churning. It is deeevine.

        Coffee stracciatella….assuming you know stracciatella (just pour the melted chocolate in at the end closly)
        2 cups 1/2 & 1/2
        1 cup whole milk
        3/4 cup sugar
        4 egg yolks
        1 tsp vanilla bean paste
        3 tbsp instant coffee (I used Maxwell House and I hate the stuff brewed, but in here, it was amazing)
        8 oz good chocolate (I used 70%), melted for the end

        heat the dairy until a simmer (NO BOIL), while heating, beat the sugar in to the egg yolks slowly until a pale yellow. temper the eggs. reheat the eggs and milk with vanilla and coffee until 170 degrees (or so). Remove from heat and, with a strainer over a container, pour mixture and let sit to cool. Put in fridge overnight (preferably, but a few hours if you must do this quickly). Churn according to directions on maker, adding chocolate at the end. Freeze product a few hours before use, letting sit for 5-7 minutes before scooping.

        • Oh yum, I am definitely going to try this. I haven’t used my ice cream maker since last year. I blame the one-ingredient banana “ice cream”– it’s easy to justify being lazy when it’s also a lot healthier.

        • If you don’t know what “temper the eggs” means do be sure to look it up. Or prepare for some lumpy-clumpy ice cream.

  • Rant: Woke up this am, brushed teeth & washed face everything normal. Laid down for an extra snooze, got up .5 hours later had odd red bump under eye, checked it out again .5 hours later and it appears to be developing into a black eye. How does this happen?

    • anon. gardener

      Weird. Same thing happened to my friend’s father while they were on vacation last month. he had a black eye in all of their photos. they were in a super humid place – maybe related to humidity?

      • this happens to me occassionally. I’m a side sleeper and I think sometimes I push the pillow into my eye for a long period of time.

  • me

    Rant: Grandmother just passed away. She was my favorite person, and my last grandparent.

    Rant: Starting to kind of miss DC.

    Rave: Knowing that I can still post here and get some PoP love.

  • RAVE: My friend, who has been undergoing fertility treatments, is pregnant.
    RANT: I am also undergoing fertility treatments, and I am not.
    RANT: I’m jealous, but working hard not to let her know. I feel like an awful person for being jealous.

    • msmaryedith

      It’s ok to feel jealous. Just acknowledge the feeling and try to understand exactly where it’s coming from, then try to let it go. It’s totally normal that you’d feel pangs of jealousy in that situation!

      Lately when I’m feeling jealous or just have the “life’s not fair” blues, I reread this: http://www.nola.com/saints/index.ssf/2011/09/new_orleans_saints_cult_hero_s.html

    • You sound like a human being. Don’t be so tough on yourself – its only natural. And good luck with your treatments! I’m sure they’ll work out in the for you in the end!

    • I know almost exactly how you feel. it does take time, so even though patience is probably not the easiest thing right now, remain optimistic and make sure you have other stuff going on in your life. I started reading a great novel when we were trying and it was much better than spending all day on the fertility message boards. Good luck and keep us updated!

    • Have you considered adoption? Plenty of babies and children in the world who need good homes.

      • Okay, I know you mean well, but asking this question is pointless. It can be hurtful and dismissive to somebody who really desires to have biological children and also, OF COURSE they know adoption is an option (an incredibly expensive one, at that). Most people just like to try to have their own first. Please do not ask this question of anyone you know trying to conceive.

        • +1. (And I have no personal stake here, as I don’t have kids and don’t intend to have any.)

          A question like “Have you considered adoption” is very naive. Do you really think that people going through fertility treatments had never given any thought to the idea of adoption??

  • Revel: NYT Sunday Ed. piece about changing face of “Chocolate City”

    Rant: No opportunity for readers to blow up the comment section DC style. The best part of reading it was looking forward to the inevitable and predictable threads to ensue — what a rip off!

    • #Anonymous @ 11:49 am: AGREED! I was greatly anticipating an opportunity to REVEL in a wonderful afternoon of circular logic and absurdity. Guess I’ll need to occupy my time at my desk today actually doing some work (just kidding)!

  • GiantSquid

    Rant: Last week at work

    Rave: great friends helping me stay positive and have a sense of humor about the situation.

  • Rant: Didn’t sleep well at all last night–kept waking up. I usually sleep like a rock! Now feeling very, “Ugh, I don’t want to be here” today.

    Rave: Had a good roommate hangout session last night, which included grilling and a Bridezillas marathon.

    Rant: Feel very demeaned at work sometimes. I know that I am the department admin assistant but you don’t have to treat me like your job is sooooo much more important than mine. Without me, you couldn’t function!

    Rant/Rave: Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter. Pretty awful movie (not that I was expecting much), but the kind that is so awful its fun to see in the theater because people are laughing and commenting. When ‘Steve the Pirate’ showed up as Stephen Douglas, the whole theater burst out laughing!

  • Rant: Where can I find good muffins in this city? Everything is blah and too much like cupcakes. Where are the heavy, packed-with-goodies, yummy muffins?

  • rave: 6 weeks left…..

    rant: Roti changed its hours so I can’t get breakfast there anymore! Hopefully just summer hours? http://roti.com/locations/1629-k-street-nw-washington-dc-20006/

    • Seconded! ROTI, why have you done this?!?!?! Where else shall I get amazing breakfast pitas?!?!?!?!?

  • Check out my friends article in NYT. I would be curious to hear your feedback.


    • Sorry, I should have posted the title – “Farewell to Chocolate City”.

    • Donna sounds like a jerk.

      • +1. I don’t know why they picked a racist to try to get people to sympathize with longtime black residents. We didn’t even get her story or any real story of blacks in DC and how they feel.

    • Since when are the only people in DC rich whites & poor blacks?? This article is what’s wrong with the mindset in the city today…

      • I see your point, but I’m pretty sure they didn’t fabricate that stat on the median black and white salaries here. That’s pretty telling.

        • There are plenty of blacks in the area who make as much as we whites do, but they choose to live in the suburbs. Same with the Indians, Koreans, Chinese, etc.

    • Despise this double standard. If an all-Irish, all-Italian or all-Polish community was bemoaning the fact that whites were no longer the majority because black people were moving in, there would be round condemnation of their racism.

      But black people who mourn the passing of Chocolate City need to be given leeway, and others need to be culturally sensitive, and we need to understand that racist insults (get your white…) are just a slightly naughty expression of sadness at the passing of an era.

      • The argument is a bit more nuanced than the “racism” you are focusing on. In my conversations with black neighbors who have been in my ‘hood a whole lot longer than I have, I don’t find them bemoaning the demise of a black majority in DC. They don’t have a problem with white (or any other non-Black) people moving in. Their concern is that having lived through the lean years they will now be forced out of the area at a point in time when things are just starting to get better. That they – collectively – are seen by newcomers as impediments whose removal will make everything better. As is the case with most discussions about race in DC – it’s really more about class (in an economic sense) than it is about race.

    • It’s interesting that there’s absolutely no mention of the booming latino population in DC too, right?

  • I love out these articles gloss over some basic facts about DC. One when it was at its peak as chocolate city, it was also the murder cap of the country, there was NO investment. the last year Barry was Mayor–not a single permit for housing construction was issued, thats NO investment in the City. the other issue is black gentrification. The 1700 new blacks who moved here are educated, and on the upward mobility track. But thats ok right?

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: Trying to take some time off work is so annoying! I have to ask 3 people, enter the time in 2 calendars (besides my calendar), and send at least 4 emails. It would be easier and less time consuming to call in sick.

    Rave: I have PTO.

  • claire

    A new rant for the day: just got an email about the coupon I purchased for dinner for two at Chez Billy (thanks to someone here for posting about it!) saying that the date I selected (Friday at 8pm) is no longer available… how can that be? Did they not limit the amount they sold for each seating?? Shame on you, Gilt City…

    Accompanying rave: Have Friday off so at least I can make the Friday at 6pm seating.

  • Rave: My 2 year old is almost completely potty trained and it only took about a week! I’m so proud!

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