Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user Eric Spiegel

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.

99 Comment

  • Rave: It’s my birthday!
    Rant: I have no plans. Like zero. Having an August birthday in DC during Congressional recess is just as bad as having a summer birthday when you were a kid.

  • Rave: Put in my resignation at my job yesterday.

    Rant: Telling the people I work with. We are close like a family here, and I actually like them so it’s been hard, like breaking up with someone repeatedly.

    Rant: An uncertain future.

    Rave: I do not feel afraid. The guilt is going away, and I’m feeling good today. I am already working on making new connections, and meeting new people.

    Rave: Already Thursday. Looking forward to the weekend.

  • Rant: Everyone keeps posting “raves,” when the PoP is clearly asking for “revels.”

  • Rave: Secured a second-level appeal of my property tax increase…since the first-level appeal resulted in the city knocking basically nothing off my 2013 property tax assessment.

    Rant: Despite having numbers showing that, of 26 properties in a 2 block radius, ours was the only one that had its assessment raised (all others went down…down significantly), I’m concerned that the DCRA will still reject our appeal. Anyone been through this and have any advice?

    • Having a higher tax rate is a good thing for showing on paper that your property value matches the tax rate, a lot of buyers/investors look at the tax rate to see how property value rates in neighborhoods. Be careful, you might be shooting yourself in the foot… If you are making steady income and paying the bill isn’t a big drain on your finances, I’d leave it be, you’ll make up for the increase at tax time ( provided you’ve financed your home). All the best.

      • I don’t agree with this one bit, with the contingency that you aren’t planning to sell in the next couple of years. Especially if every other house went up, it seems like allowing just yours to rise serves no purpose whatsoever, other than to give more money to the city. I am happy to pay my share… if my neighbors are likewise paying their share.

      • Anonymous… If our horizon for selling was short I’d agree with you, but we’re planning on staying put for 8 to 10 years. So there’s plenty of time for the assessments in the neighborhood to converge. Right now our assessment is up 7% over a two year period, where the average for the 26 other properties that I looked up is down 8% over the same period. Even if you only look at comparables in that group (i.e., recently renovated to about the same level as ours) you find that these are down about 1 – 2%. In other words, we’re getting hammered by DC.

    • Yes, I went through this last year – with success. I found the process to be fair (easy to say when you win!). My only complaint is how long the entire process took from submitting a first round appeal to actually presenting my case. I found the arbiters were very fair and we signed the paperwork on the spot. I too had prepared a similiar comparison to 20 some properties on my street. Good luck!

  • Rant: I need some zen and to improve my posture and flexibility. I am totally uncoordinated but want to give yoga a try. Anyone have some good recommendations for an uber-beginner class/teacher. Location is Van Ness-ish.

    • I know it’s nowhere near where you live, but if you can make it out here I highly recommend the free outdoor yoga at the Yards Park. It’s so peaceful being out near the water, and the instructor is awesome. It’s become my favorite part of the week.

      • When is the class? Is there somewhere I can find more info? That sounds awesome.

        • 7-8pm on Wednesdays until the end of September, and they recently added an 8am class on Saturdays (haven’t made it to that one yet so I can’t vouch for the instructor). We meet on the boardwalk near the light tower. She usually has some extra mats if you don’t have one.

    • I go to Yoga District at Dupont. My first class, at which I was totally freaked out, was with Benny. It was called Alignment Basics. Unfortunately it’s at lunchtime, but it was a good way to ease into the flow of a yoga class. It was also good because there were only four people there! He showed how to do down dog correctly, and went through some basic stretches.

      I go to a Yoga 1 class now. The instructor, Michelle, tends to switch it up every week. Some weeks are a little more gentle/restorative, and others are more vigorous. I was scared that Yoga 1 would be still be full of people way more advanced than me, but it really isn’t. It’s a variety of people at all different skill levels, and nobody is going to judge you if your down dog isn’t quite right or if you can’t turn yourself upside down. I like Yoga District a lot.

    • I loved loved loved beginner yoga classes at Stroga, on 18th and Columbia. It was a true beginner class, like “you put your feet like this, and then your arm like that, anyone have questions?”.

    • Unity Woods near the Woodly Park metro has excellent classes for beginners. They emphasize alignment and correct form so you learn how to do poses correctly from the get-go.

  • claire

    Rave: Jury duty! I know lots of people moan and groan when they get their summons, but I was actually excited to do my civic duty. Went in on Monday, was chosen for a jury, and everything wrapped up yesterday. The other jurors were all clearly dedicated to giving due diligence and going over all the evidence. Overall, I felt good about doing it (although rendering the verdict was difficult).

    Rave: I’ve walked at least 5 miles every day since last Friday. Makes me yearn for a job that I can walk to and/or more free time for walking around.

    • Oh yeah, I love being able to walk to work (and pretty much anywhere else I need to go). My coworkers look at me with pity and are always offering me rides; it’s a shame they can’t recognize the pleasure and benefits of walking.

      • claire

        One of my co-workers once offered to give me a ride to my car because I was parked in the “far” (maybe 1/4 mile if I’m being generous) parking lot! Maybe some of these people are not used to walking or feel like they don’t have the time to spare? I love walking though! Saves money, gets you a little sun and fresh air, and helps you fit in a little light exercise. If only I didn’t work out in Maryland…

        • I think it’s because they’re older and live in the suburbs– not the close, semi-walkable suburbs like Bethesda and Arlington but the ones out by places like Fredericksburg and Annapolis– and sincerely believe that no one walks anywhere unless they have no other option. Even though I’ve told them I have a car and only live a little over a mile away.

    • I’ve served on juries three times (once in Alexandria, twice in California), and each time it was my impression that everyone involved did their very best to come the right, and dare I even say “fair”, decision.

      Jury service is, in my opinion, one of the few civic obligations in our society that really seems to work.

    • I LOVE jury duty. I like fulfilling the civic duty and being one of the few who don’t try to scheme ways to get out of. I still play words with friends with a few of my fellow jurors.

  • Revel: No longer have to hear about chicken sandwiches on my fb news feed.

    • Amen to that. If I knew what most restaurant owners really thought about me, I’d have nowhere to eat because I’d be boycotting everyone…

  • thebear

    Rant: 311 and Parking Enforcement. There’s a car that is a chronic violator of the official No Parking Building Entrance in front of my building, and the No Standing or Parking rush hour restrictions on my block…to the tune of $1240 going back to March of this year. Yesterday I called 311 because they were parked smack dab in the middle of one of the loading zones, making it unusable by commercial vehicles. 311 simply transferred me to Parking Enforcement. The PE lady was annoyed about that. “They had no business transferring you!” She took the info and I emphasized that this car had (at the time) $1190 in outstanding tickets and that it was beyond belief that they had not booted it. Their response: Just sent out a Ticketzilla to drop another $50 Loading Zone ticket. We’ll see what happens since I have now passed this along to my ANC, Jack Evans, and 2D command.

    • Must be Marion Barry’s car!

    • So you are getting the license plate and checking their tickets on the web and adding them all up? Seems a bit obsessive don’t ya think?

      • This is actually something I can see you doing. Pot meet kettle.

        • That’s hilarious…before I scrolled down to see your response I was thinking the exact same thing.

      • thebear

        Obsessive? Hardly. As Association president, it is part of my responsibilities to keep tabs on what’s going on around the building and work on solutions to problems. This vehicle (and a couple of others) are constantly parking in a clearly signed no-parking building entrance area. Not only is it illegal, it causes considerable difficulty for those residents who use paratransit when the van or ambulance cannot get to the curb because some moron refuses to read or obey signs.

        I got our building management to have the desk staff call-in any vehicle parking there, and MPD patrols have also been good about not only responding to parking calls but routinely ticketing them when passing by; but the simple logic of “you park here you get a ticket” does not work on these jerks. I merely check to see what the score as documentation of the persistent problem.

        Perhaps if you had some actual responsibility in your community, rather than just kvetching on the Internet you would understand.

  • Rant: Another crazy bastard walks into a building intent on shooting people because he disagrees with them.

    Rant 2: The complete inability of many intelligent, (seemingly) open-minded individuals to apply similar reasoning skills to two situations when politics are involved. As a whippersnapper I assumed that tendency was primarily the realm of conservatives – boy, was I wrong. Liberals can be just as bad.

    • Human rights aren’t politics.

    • I hear. If some lunatic with pro-life literature had walked into Planned Parenthood with a gun and shot a guard folks on this site would be burning up the comment thread – and rightly so! So why are so many commenters close-mouthed now? Do people genuinely not care because the “victim” was a conservative group?

      • I know you were referring to commenters on this site, and I agree with you, but in the bigger picture, I was gratified to see that a very strong joint statement about derying the shooting was quickly issued yesterday by 24 GLBT rights organizations, including HRC, GLAAD, PFLAG, the Trevor Project, and Freedom to Marry, saying that they “utterly reject and comdemn such violence”.

    • Yes, there are crazies of all political affiliations. However, liberals are more willing to invest in substantive mental health care and other social services that go a long way toward preventing these types of incidents.

      • Thanks for being part of the problem. Way to think down the party line and pat yourself on the back while doing so.

        • Yes, I am part of the problem because I support investing more in programs and services that deter this type of behavior. I think being a champion for a healthy and educated society is something about which to pat myself on the back.

          • But the basic thrust of your earlier comment wasn’t to support investment in mental health initiatives, it was that liberals do so more than conservatives, and therefore are, LIKE, WAY BETTER!

          • C3PO, I kind of read it like this: If a ‘right winger’ murders a bunch of leftists, that is because right wing ideology is warped. If a leftist attempts to murder social conservatives, it is because conservatives supposedly do not support mental health funding. Yes, blame the victim- the conservatives have it coming.

          • Also, to get to the larger point, this notion that funding equals better mental health outcomes is far too simplistic. There are many people eligible for services who choose not to go for x, y, and z reasons. Some of the killers you’ve seen (1999 Littleton; 2007 VA Tech; 2012 Aurora) involve people who would have had access to or family with enough money for mental health services. Why they ultimately did not take advantage of these things is complicated and cannot be answered with, “But if we only dumped a lot more money on it, we’d get the results we needed.”

          • I fail to see how I’m wrong. And since I’ve touched a nerve I’m going to assume it’s because I am correct. If you want to do your homework, start with Reagan and see where the GOP has sided with funding mental health services.

          • Interesting circular logic. Let me get this straight, Anonymous 3:25 – disagreement with you equals touching a nerve, which must therefore support your assertion as correct. Hmm.

            And thusly you prove yourself unworthy of any continual conversation.

  • Rave: My cousin has chosen me, over the HarperCollins photographer, to do the jacket portrait for her forthcoming book. I don’t have a lot of experience with portraiture, but I’m flattered and totally up for the challenge. Would love some tips from the photographers out there! I don’t have studio lighting so I’ll probably wait for an overcast day and do it outside.

  • Rave/rant: A guy who broke my heart years ago abroad professed that he always liked me, made a huge mistake, etc.

    Rave-ish: We didn’t speak to each other for about a year, and then I forgave him as I don’t believe in grudges (just haven’t forgotten). We have been in rather close contact for years, even with our respective relationships (since then, obviously mine has gone awry and I am single again).

    Rant: Not sure if I can trust this guy again. He never physically/verbally harmed in any way, he just disappeared in terms of friendship for a few months and as I had fallen for him, it crushed me for months.

    Not sure what to do, but as a massive instincts person, I do want to see if second chances are worth it. Thoughts, PoPers?

    • Don’t do it!!!!

    • It’ll be hard, but you’ll be better off not doing it. I was in a similar situation and I am happy everyday that my friends told me not to do it. I’m in a much better place and a much better relationship now.

    • How many years ago? and how old is the guy? Guys are capable of growing and maturing. A dumbass at 23 might change by 33.

      • He is now 33. When this occurred, I was 22 (fools rush in!) and he was 29.

        • Based only on that, I’m doubtful that a guy who’s a dumbass at 29 is going to be much different at 33, but it is possible.

          I would say only give it a second chance if you can a) accept the real possibility that your heart will get broken again and b) walk away if it’s not totally obvious that things are different from before.

          And to be fair, I would make sure you’ve fairly reflected on your role in the previous situation and whether or not you have changed (or needed to.)

        • You know you’re going to do it. So, why ask strangers?

          This is going to be your screw up, all yours, don’t blame it on us. B/C the good brother hasn’t changed and he’s still going to be chasing the 22 year old bootie…

    • I am a reformed D-bag. Broke up with my now wife several times and actually had another girl friend and another kind of side girlfriend when I met her. I am not telling you what to do but I am just saying that people can evolve/mature. I was simply not a fully formed human being/man when I first started dating my wife and treated her and other women disrespectfully. I grew up, have been married for almost 10 years and have not so much even put myself in a situation where I could be tempted to go back to my d-bag ways during my marriage – and I won’t. But, don’t ignore the signals if dude is still a d-bag. For example, he is telling you these things while still in a relationship? D-baggy.

      • No, he is actually newly single himself. Thanks for the advice. He was in his early 30s now and seems to be in a better place. However, my guard is still up.

        • Well it sounds like you’ve already made a decision to go for it, so I will just advise you to be as mindful of what you’re doing as possible. You’re newly out of a relationship and have complained about feeling lonely. Make sure that you’re being self aware. I used to have a tendency to fall back into relationships with exes after a breakup (i.e. hmmm, I know we dated and it never worked but maybe he’s changed, yada, yada, yada) because it felt “safer” than a new one. But it was never a good choice. You need to work on you as a single person before you can really be ready for another relationship. And it sounds like this guy is an emotional avoider, which is the worst kind.

          Just my 2 cents. Good luck with whatever you decide.

    • What everyone else said — don’t do it.

      Although maybe this is — to borrow a comparison from a classmate from long, long ago — “one of those things like joining the Columbia House Record and Tape Club: Everyone tells you not to do it, but you just have to make the mistake for yourself.”

      • Don’t do it. He just broke up with someone and is looking for the easy, sure thing (he knows he broke your heart and rightly assumes that you’d want to get back together).

        • Maybe don’t sleep with him for a while and see if he is still interested then. Good barometer of whether he is really into you or just looking to hook up.

  • Rant: Missed hanging out with friends last night because of an early work day today, and too much going on. Feels like I’m working my life away.

    Rant: Shower Hot/Cold lines are reversed in my new temporary apartment. Apparently the plumber didn’t know what the “H” & “C” stand for. I was taking cold showers for the last 2 days, and every time I flush the toilet, it’s been draining the water heater.

    Rave: The glass is half full, I’m thankful for where I am right now even though it’s completely different than where I thought I’d be years ago and the future looks bright even though I’m in debt for life. Yay. 🙂

    • C for caliente!
      I’ve been lots of countries where the labels on the taps are backwards, but screwing up the incoming lines? Yikes.

  • Rant: The dreaded rootkit.

    Rant: The dreaded trojan.

    Rant: One of them took out my audio driver!

  • skj84

    Rave: I’m on vacation and haven’t had to get up early or worry about work stuff at all this week.
    Rant: Vacay is almost over
    Rant: I’m not any less stressed out due to sister getting in a car accident yesterday. She’s ok but has a broken bone in her back. I’m still on edge.
    Rave: It’s a beautiful day and I’m going to spend it at the beach!

  • Revel: Started running again this week after a three week wedding madness / honeymoon hiatus.
    Rant: I am out of shape — side stitches are killing me!
    Revel: At least I’m back in it.
    Revel: I just love being married. My husband does so many sweet things for me. Attempting to be just as thoughtful toward him!

  • rant: completely annoying and aggravated for really no reason at all. feeling so on edge and impatient.

    • Allison

      Whenever I find myself having these feelings, it’s usually correlated with how much time I’m spending on the computer/internet. Try taking a couple-day break and you’ll feel better.

  • Rave (or Revel) – Gorgeous weather!

    Rant – Singed my tongue on coffee this A.M. and it’s still bothering me. I hate it when that happens.

    • My mouth still feels singed from dinner last night. Somehow I have the patience to make risotto, but not to wait 5 minutes for it to cool. 🙂

  • Rave: my five-year-old beat me at chess!
    Rant: a five-year-old beat me at chess.

  • Rant: Hitting a rough patch with my boyfriend. He’s working through a lot of shit and it makes me worried that he’s not really ready to be in something serious. It’s so frustrating to see him in so much pain and not be able to do anything for him.
    Rave: I really love him. We have a good foundation and can talk about things honestly and openly, which gives me hope that we will work through it.

  • pablo .raw

    Rave: Turkish dinner
    Rave: new camera

  • Rave: Just had lunch, outside in the grass, with my awesome co-workers.
    Rant: Said co-workers will be leaving at the end of next week.

    Rave: Going to see The Campaign tonight!

    Rant: The real campaign. I am sooooooo tired of political ads!

    • I will counter your coworker lunch rave with a rant:

      I hate this incessant need my coworkers have to eat lunch together (our boss included). It’s a small team, and I like them all, but I really don’t want to feel obligated to spend my one free hour during the day talking about work (or even just making silly small talk about other stuff).

  • Neither a rant nor a revel — just a question: Does anyone know what’s happening with the former Hebrew Home/now vacant DC government building on Spring Road near 13th Street, NW? Over the past few days, lots of workers have been pulling old furniture out of the place (and trashing it in giant dumpsters). Thanks!

  • Rave: College football starts two weeks from today!

    Super Rave: My beloved Vanderbilt is playing in the opening game!

    Rant: Cannot attend the game in person…

    Rave: Because I’ll be in Colorado getting married!

  • MsNesbitt

    Rant: Still haven’t heard back about the job, and while I know it’s still well within their projected timeframe, every minute that passes makes me 15% more anxious.

    Rave: Ran into my crush during lunch – completely random since we work nowhere near each other. What a nice pick-me-up! Now if only I could muster up the courage to ask him out…

    Super rave: Vacation starts in 3.5 hours!

  • Rant: The fact that my comments get moderated when I have a come back on what someone says to me but the moderator allows others to pile on me. Let’s keep it fair now. I have no problem taking the heat but at the same time I should be able to deal it out as well (and I didn’t even say anything mean, in fact, it was factual). Just wow, not cool.

    • Prince Of Petworth

      Moderating comments is not an easy thing. And it’s certainly, unfortunately not “fair”. I don’t actually read every comment. It is impossible. What I do, do is delete comments when people insult each other or are being rude when I see it. Again, it is not fair. I wish I could catch all. I also wish people weren’t rude. It’s an imperfect process but I do the best I can. A good rule of thumb is to not be rude. I know things can get heated from time to time. And when one is behind a computer it is easy to forget there is flesh and blood on the other end.

      • I can appreciate that but in my case, I wasn’t being mean nor rude. I made a post and then others posted a smart comment about my post (incorrectly, I might add) and then I basically told them they were wrong but I get deleted but yet others are allowed to keep adding on to the post that was a shot at me. I am just saying, what is good for the goose is good for the gander right? Like I said, I am a big boy and can take it but I just thought I would give you something to think about. Outside of that, keep doing your thing, you know I appreciate and support you and your blog.

        • Just also thought I would point out that the comment on my post was correcting my grammer which was something I thought you discouraged. or is that for spelling only? I’m just saying. OK, I am done now 🙂

  • valentina

    Rant: Another FB friend posting blow by blow of her wedding details. So depressing, it’t like everywhere I go someone is exclaiming how wonderful their boyfriend/husband is or how much they enjoy the married life.

    Please shoot me…

  • Deflated rant: After 41 years of marriage, my mom asked my dad for a trial separation. Am on one hand proud of my mom for doing something for herself but on the other hand THIS ISN’T EXACTLY WHAT I HAD IN MIND. Am so angry with her. And so sad for my dad. She said she hasn’t loved him for 30 years. Total suckage. So much for thinking they were a great model marriage for working through their trials and tribulations. Feel like my “happy” childhood is a lie.

    • sorry you are going through this. same happened to my family when i was in my mid-20s. it was so f-d up and felt like it was even worse than if it had happened when i was younger.

      i stayed close to my mom, who got screwed, and encouraged her to talk to someone. it’s tough having to listen to how sad/mad/confused/pissed off your parents are – it’s better if they have a neutral party to discuss these things with. before she went to counseling, she talked to me about this stuff everyday and it did strain our relationship a bit. i knew my dad was a d-bag, but i didn’t need to hear about it every minute of every day. once she had someone else to talk to, it really helped out.

      i also felt like my childhood was a lie, but – and it took me a while to get to this place – i was glad that i knew that my adult life wasn’t going to be a lie.

      i’m sorry for what you and your dad are going through. hang in there. 🙁

    • talula

      I’m so sorry you’re going through that. My parents separated when I was in my early 20s, that was nearly 10 years ago. It was a shock for me to realize that everything I thought about my childhood: a happy one with parents in a happy and stable marriage, was a lie.

      Definitely try to remain as neutral as you can. My parents both opened up to me about their problems and I tried to be there for both of them individually. They both went to counseling separately, which really helped.

      Ten years later, my parents are much happier now, living apart than when they were married. They are still friends and attend family functions together. Their separation helped me realize that my parents are more than just my mom and dad; they are normal people who make mistakes and bad decisions sometimes, just like everybody else.

      Anyway, hang in there. It will get better.

    • Many thanks for the kind replies, PoP-ville! Total bummer part is they really like each other, but my mom likes my dad more like a roommate than a husband. My dad, on the other hand, would move heaven and earth if it would make my mom happier. I’m finally to the point where I can talk about it without any real outward emotion, so I guess that’s good? It’s just awkward hanging out with them individually instead of as a pair. This too shall pass, though, right?

  • thebear

    Rave/Revel: Lunch at Cafe Berlin today was just awesome. Just haven’t had opportunity to be over that way to dine for a long time. Made my Bavarian side very happy.

    Rant: In spite of days of assaulting Mount Paper, I still can’t find my desk or the wing chair that I vaguely recall being next to it.

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