Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user yostinator

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.

91 Comment

  • binpetworth

    Rave: My weekend starts tomorrow.

    Double rave: It includes a Nats game.

    Triple rave: Am also going to finally check out the Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens.

  • Rant:
    I just did the thing where I knew I was doing something right and I could tell the person I was interacting with did not understand the situation fully, so I went ahead and did what I was doing and now people are angry because I over rode their authority and they are the ones who make the decisions about this and I should not do that anymore unless I have confirmation from them but

  • Rant: I’m at the point where the proportion of days I don’t want to go to work is greater than the days I do.
    Rave: Job interview on Monday!!

  • Rant: That my FB feed has turned into baby everything. Sonograms! Here’s me at 35 weeks! Hey mommies, what are the best organic baby products? And so on and so forth. I’m probably more cynical than most because I’ve never had any interest in babies, but ughghghhhh SHUT UP!!!

    Rave: STFU Parents blog.

    • I haven’t used this yet, but it might be worth checking out:

      Unbaby Me is a chrome extension that automatically deletes all pictures of babies on your Facebook timeline and replaces them with pictures of something cool instead

    • Yes, same thing happened to me. 6 years after college and suddenly FB transformed into baby book. All babies, all the time.

      • valentina

        I wish I could do the same thing with engagement and “my boyfriend is so great. ” announcements on FB.

        • those are the worst – even worse than the baby stuff (and that’s saying something since i really don’t like kids).

          i have friends who all they talk about is how awesome their BF like three times a week. seems to me if you have to keep telling the world how fantastic and great your relationship is, it probably isn’t.


          • Totally agree with you guys on that! I have a boyfriend and I don’t post anything about how much I love him or how great he is on Facebook. Something are meant to be kept private. Too bad many people don”t understand that.

    • See, the only reason I stay friend with random people I went to high school with is so I can look at pictures of their weddings/babies/life choices and make judgements. Am I the worst?

      • No, I do the same. It gives me a confidence boost.

      • Ha! You’re not alone. I’d guess a hefty percentage of FB users only have an account for the same reasons as you (and me)!

      • Half the reason i’m on facebook is so i can pick fights with some midwestern folk who post on my friends walls about obamacare, gay marriage, etc. I need to stop though, bad habit! 🙂

    • Why don’t you just block them from your feed? Or better yet, unfriend them. If they knew of your contempt for them, I’m sure they wouldn’t mind. Really, you don’t sound like much of a friend.

  • Rave: Training to run in my first half marathon to support my weight loss efforts. Any pointers?

    • Some people may disagree, but I think the most important thing is being very careful not to overtrain. I’ve made that mistake and it’s not fun. It’s pretty easy to think you need to run 50-60 miles a week, but if you are carrying extra weight and are relatively new to distance running, it’s a recipe for injury and may discourage you from running future races.

      Get to the point where you are comfortable running 9-10 miles, which you can do by slowly building up distance on moderated distance runs a couple times a week, and then a longer run on the weekend. If you can swing it, try doing those some of those longer runs on natural surfaces like the C&O canal, Glover-Archibald trail, or the CCT trail in Fairfax. Throw in some cross-training as well, which will help shed pounds quicker, which in turn will make you feel faster and able to go longer.

      Good luck!

      • Ditto on Beerdude’s comments. Try Hal Higdon’s training program for beginers, it’ll give you great advice to start from.
        I’d be cautious on Glover Archibold trails. I’ve runny dozens of halfs/full marathons and last year I twisted my ankle twice on the trails in Glover-Archibold. It isn’t mainted and lots of rocks,roots and holes – so be careful.

        Enjoy running and don’t worry about your times – its your first long-race so have fun!

      • Totally agree on the overtraining. My first marathon training plan was put together by my friend, who has run a ton of 1/2 and full marathons. He had me running 6 days a week, including three days of hills/intervals and one long run. I burned out after 8 weeks – I’m surprised I even lasted that long.

        Also, another important thing to remember is that just because you’re increasing your activity, doesn’t mean you should suddenly start eating thousands and thousands of calories a day. I made that mistake, too, and it was frustrating.

        Find a reputable plan – Runner’s World has some and I’m sure there are other resources – and search around for a recommended diet/calorie count for the type of plan you intend to follow.

        No matter what, good for you for getting out there and getting started. That’s a great first step. 🙂

        GOOD LUCK!

        • Thanks for the pointers everyone! I plan to use Hal Higdon’s novice half marathon plan and double it from 12 to 24 weeks (repeat each week). I don’t plan to change my eating at all. I’m definitely not running long enough to require the use of gels just yet and I need to read up on when, or if, those should be introduced.

          • Gels – I like them but only use them on runs over 10-13 miles. If you think you may use them on race day – then try them out during your training.

            I hate track workout but they are incredibly helpful if you want to increase speed – Hal includes them in all his plans. Good luck!!!

          • Andy is spot on about the gels, they are not something you want to try for the first time on race day as they don’t agree with many people’s (including my own) stomachs. Clif Blocks are a good alternative, I’ve found.

          • Re: eating, while you shouldn’t overeat, make sure you don’t go too far in the opposite direction. As your mileage increases, you may find you need to increase your calories just a bit to get through long runs. I don’t use gels in half marathon training, but I do eat something especially hardy–like peanut butter toast and a banana–in advance of long runs. I struggled with my energy for a while before I discovered that I wasn’t eating enough throughout the day to support the amount of running I was doing.

            Agree with everyone about not over training! For a first half marathon, peaking at 10-11 miles should be adequate.

    • Awesome! Good for you!
      For me, having running partners helps a lot — they keep me distracted while running and make me a lot less likely to skip a run. It doesn’t have to be your bestie (probably better if it isn’t), just someone who runs at a similar pace or who has similar distance goals, and doesn’t have to be for every run. A lot of the running shops have regular evening or weekend runs or training groups. PR Running in Cleveland Park has a beginners group that includes people at all levels and is very welcoming (unlike the former cross country stars who run with other shops).

      • and that’s why i’ve always been intimidated by running groups. pacers on p street is closest to me – do you know anything/have any experience with them? i’m certainly not a former cross country runner and run around a 9:30 pace.

        before i moved to dc, i went to a running group meetup and got smoked by everyone (and i was faster then!) – so i ended up doing my run alone. by the time i got back to the meeting spot, pretty much everyone was gone. it was not a great experience, so i’ve shied away ever since.

        • I saw a group running around noon near Thomas Circle that looked like a slow and steady pace. Does anybody know what group this is?

          On an additional note: how in the world can these people go run at noon? Do they not have typical office jobs?

        • Not sure about Pacers, it’s worth stopping in to ask if the group is appropriate for your pace and stress that you want an *honest* answer. That’s about my pace, and I was happy with the Saturday morning runs at Potomac River running in Cleveland Park (check when they have Runners 101 classes or 10-mile training programs and go at those times).

  • Rant: It’s getting darker earlier.

    Rave: Awesome full moon last night.

  • Rant: Anxiety running high.

    Rave: Thursday.

    Rave: Finally getting my hair done tomorrow.

    Rant: Worried about my parents, especially my mother, who also is dealing with high anxiety lately after a big move.

    Rant: Isn’t summer over yet?

  • Rave: Received my Affordable Care Act refund from my health insurance company.

    Rant: What happened to that money for the past several years?!!

  • Rant – My new boss has decided that no one in my office can telecommute any more. Since we are a research organization and my job is to write papers, this is a totally ridiculous rule. I have rheumatoid arthritis and take heavy duty meds one night a week, assuming that I can work from home the next day, since the meds make my stomach upset. Isn’t this new rule against the ADA in my case? The boss is also paying for parking for the administrative staff but not for me, the only “professional” in the bunch.

    • If you have a qualified disability you can request accomodation, which may include working from home. I’d talk to your HR or EEO staff about how to formally make the request. I know at my office its a process that requires medical documentation, etc.

      • Thanks. We don’t have an HR department, just the boss. And he’s the one that has decided the “no telecommuting” policy.

    • Have you had a discussion with your boss about this? If not, I would suggest doing so. You might find that he is not as hard-nosed as it seems. Another solution may be that he lets you come in to the office late and work late the days after you take your medication.

      • Good idea. Given that you’ve got a legitimate medical reason for wanting to telecommute, your boss might be willing to grant you an exception, or at least be more flexible with you.

  • valentina

    Rave:Finally finished my move from NE to SW.
    Rave: So far I like the area and my commute to work was a breeze.
    Rant: Wrapping my brain around the new rent payment.
    Rave: All utilities are included.

  • Rant: It really bothers me that my sister’s boyfriend (they do not live together but have been together for 5 years) always has something to come up whenever something needs to be done. For example, my sister moved last weekend and guess who could not help because he had something to come up at work that required his lazy ass to be there. If this was the first time I could probably get over it, but it is time and time again that he conveniently has things that just happen to come up. I think he is a loser and my sister could do much better and many of her friends also feel the same way. However, for some reason she stays with this jerk.

    • Sounds like you have a thing for this guy.

    • binpetworth

      I have a friend in a similar situation–5+ years with a loser, but at the end of the day, unless she’s being abused, you just have to let it go. Yes, it’s frustrating to see someone squander their time and energy on someone who’s not appreciative of them, but your life will be much better if you simply try not to let it bother you.

      • Yeah — maybe just try to anticipate in future that he’ll flake out and you’ll be the one helping your sister do XYZ? Then if he does, you’ll be prepared, and if he doesn’t, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

    • The problem is not your sister’s boyfriend, the problem is your sister. Whatever the boyfriend is – selfish, a jerk – your sister has made it clear, through her action of staying with him for 5 years, that she is cool with it; that there’s no reason for him to do better by her. Unfortunately, if he ever decides to straighten up and fly right, he’ll probably dump your sister and pick someone else because he won’t be able to get past the fact that your sister let him behave like such a jerk for so long.

      • Well put, Marcus. Another part of the problem is that the OP also enables the jerk boyfriend – it seems like she usually steps in to save the day for her sister, so sis never has to face the real consequences of her boyfriend’s unreliability.

        As someone who had a sister in a similar situation I can totally understand the desire to help your family, but it isn’t always really helping them in the end.

  • Rave: Been really focused past three weeks on running, working-out and eating right. Have tons of energy and feel amazing.
    Rant: Break-up was motivation for re-focusing on exercise.

  • Rant: The heel tips on the pumps I bought less than three weeks ago are already worn down to the metal part. DC sidewalks are brutal on heels!!

    • I hope it is not because you are one of those women that do the “power walk.” There is a lady in my office that I can hear coming down the hall from 60 feet away.

      • Well, you might be talking about me because I do walk really fast! People at work tease me about it all the time. But my office has carpeting so I don’t think it’s contributing to most of the heel damage. It’s probably because I walk 2 1/2 miles in them on the days that I wear them to work (2-3 times a week). But still, the wear rate was incredibly quick even for me. I suppose I should just wear flip-flops to work like everyone else.

        • Or flats. Or other shoes. It’s not as though heels/flip-flops is an either/or choice.

          • Problem is I find flats of any kind less comfortable than heels. And if I’m wearing pants they’ll be dragging on the ground. A pair of low wedges might work though.

  • Rave: Email from the Nats re: playoff tickets for season ticket holders!

    Rant: It’s a lot of money (a LOT of money) up front for games that might not even be played, and the “refund” for unused tickets will just go for paying next year’s bill

    Revel: I’ll get a pretty printed strip of every possible playoff ticket for my seats, something that seemed pretty far fetched 10 months ago. Even if they tank I’m getting them framed 🙂

  • Rave: After playing pick up soccer last night I headed over to the Capitol for a couple of hours and got what I think are some pretty decent pictures. The moon was nice and full which made it even better. I really wanted to get some pics of the Washington Monument with the sky lightening up but I kept missing it. I think I am going to go out again after practice tonight and try some of the other monuments.

    Rant: I don’t really know how to shoot in manual. I normally just play around and see what happens.

    Rave: I am still learning and determined to become a good photographer.

    Pablo, do you have any suggestions on locations? Any tricks on Iso and F/Stop that I can use to help me out. Or is it something that you must truly understand to get it?

  • Not a rant or a rave, but I just saw a truck that’s selling milk and cookies. Might be a good option for those who miss the PB&J truck.

  • Rant: Frizzy hair. Most summers I have it under control but for some reason I haven’t been able to manage it this year. I’ve tried gel, mousse, oils, serums, leave-in conditioners, anti-frizz sprays, and smoothing lotions in various combinations. I’ve tried loading up on product and barely using any at all. I’ve tried washing less frequently and washing more.

    For those that have vanquished the frizz monster (especially those with naturally curly hair like mine), could you please share your hair care routine? I’m at my wit’s end.

    • talula

      I sadly don’t have any tips for your, but I just wanted to let you know that I totally feel your pain!! I feel like my curly hair has been up in a pony tail every day for the past month. It’s the only way I can manage at this point 🙁

      Dear people with beautiful curly hair, share your secrets with us!!

      • I can’t even do ponytails these days! I have to stick with buns or the occasional braid. This morning (for the first time ever) I was looking at a Living Social deal for a Keratin treatment with genuine interest.

    • I like Tigi Catwalk Curls Rock Amplifier. I’ve tried dozens of products and this is the best for me. I also recommend Garrett at Spalon on 17th street. Great with curly hair and as a bonus, he is very entertaining.

      • Thanks for the recommendation. I used to use that one and had forgotten about it– might be worth revisiting!

        • How funny! I also use Tigi Catwalk Curls Rock Amplifier and go to Garrett at Spalon. I’ve been seeing him since he was at Fiddleheads years ago. I second both recommendations.

    • I usually just keep it really short. Except this summer I’m growing it out a bit and am just being a frizzy head.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: Spent the morning in interviews and it took all my energy.

    Rave: I was the interviewer not the interviewee, so it really wasn’t that bad for me.

    • I’ve never had to interview anyone but I think that would be mentally exhausting. You have to be strategic, and pay close attention to what the candidate is saying (and not saying), and maintain enthusiasm so they’ll be excited about potentially working for you. And even if you try to put off the selection decision until later, I think it would be hard to avoid thinking about it as you’re conducting the interviews.

  • RANT: the Romney ad on the left side of this website that keeps popping open, covering the page and playing video. I hate political ads of any kind, but especially annoying to me are ones that repeatedly block out the stuff I actually want to look at.

  • Rant: Its already 2:15 and I’ve barely accomplished anything today. How did that happen?
    Rave: Nats game with friends last night. Beautiful weather for it!
    Rave: There is a robot that delivers chemo/other medications around the hospital who is programmed with small talk. Today I watched three young residents pass and it said, “Hi, I’m single.” Even funnier that the voice is male!

  • alxindc

    Rave: Found the ID of a track I like a lot.
    Rant: The only person I can share this with is 5,000 miles away.

    Rave: World of Beer opens across from my office! My beer consumption will be upgraded accordingly. Alcohol dulls the pain, sometimes.

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