Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

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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 celebrate things about daily life in DC.

101 Comment

  • Revel: The lines were long at my polling place this morning. Great to see DC residents out in force to exercise our right to vote!
    Rant: Not enough poll workers signing people in. As a result, it was something of a sh*tshow once you got inside the door.

  • Rant: had my bike brake pads replaced and brakes supposedly adjusted for $67 at Capitol Hill Bikes. While both sets of brake pads were $12 each, they charged me $20 for the front wheel work, and another $20 for the back wheel work. Am I being over-charged? Seems pretty ridiculous.
    Another rant: realizing they didn’t even do it right. A mile or so later, and I realize that the back brakes are riding tight on the back wheel. I can’t even stick a piece of paper between the wheel and brakes. I’m guessing the mechanic is just not paying attention to details (not the first time I’ve had this problem at the same place)…. I need to learn how to do these things myself.

    • Huh, I’ve only had tire repairs at Capitol Hill Bikes but the prices seemed reasonable. That does sound high though.

    • Try the Daily Rider. I’ve had my bike repaired there twice and it was super inexpensive.

    • Yes, this is something you should absolutely be doing yourself. If Cap Hill Bikes can’t get something that simple done correctly they are definitely ripping you off (and not the first time I’ve heard complaints about their service department). It may be that the caliper got bumped, though. Are the pads riding that close on both sides of the rim, or just one?

      Pick up a basic bike repair book (the Zinn ones are great), or just go to http://www.parktool.com for free and very thorough videos. You can do almost all basic bike maintenance with those resources, a cheap set of Allen wrenches, a screwdriver and a tire change kit.

      • Thanks for the tips above (including the one for the Daily Rider). It is hard to find a good bike place in this area, especially one that is willing to take basic commuters on not-so-fancy bikes seriously.

    • I don’t remember the name, but there’s a bike clinic that does sessions at Annie’s Ace Hardware in Petworth (and I think other places), teaching people how to maintain and (I think) fix their own bikes.

      • Yep, that is The Bike House, which is based out of Annie’s (between Georgia and 13th on Upshur, NW). They have a bike clinic every Saturday from 12-3 p.m. They’re at thebikehouse dot org.

        • Thanks again for the info, everyone. I biked over to Capitol Hill Bikes at lunch and they adjusted the brakes in minutes. They were friendly and apologetic, so I guess that is a rave. The price is still expensive, though!

          • I disagree. If you can’t figure out how to adjust your brakes, you’re not ready to install new brakes. It’s true that it isn’t complicated, but it is a bit of an art. So, if you are not mechanically inclined, leave it to the pros and pay the mechanics (who are not getting rich, btw) b/c the ability to stop your bike on a dime is really worth spending some coin.

          • I think the point is that you can *learn* to adjust your brakes (and install new pads) very easily. It’s not rocket surgery. Because you don’t know how to do something now doesn’t mean you should be dependent on bike shops forever.

  • bfinpetworth

    Rant: Republicans trying to steal elections by suppressing voter turnout. Shameful.
    Rave: Obama will ultimately win this election, but I doubt we know it tonight due to the crazy election rules and practices all over the nation. Some are estimating the results in Ohio won’t be finalized until about Nov. 16.

    • I read in the NYT that due to such a high % of early voters in OH (around 50% of the electorate), they will have a good idea who will win OH by 8 PM EST. If Romney won the majority of early votes, Obama’s odds of winning the state are close to zip. If Obama gets 60+% of the early votes, then Romney is in trouble. Well, at least thats what the pundits are saying.

      Virginia, on the other hand, might not know its results for quite some time…

    • I for one am a little sick of the partisan rancor. In the past few days I have seen republicans called racist, nazis, stupid, anti-woman, and on and on and on. To me it is not ok. At the same time you rail on people for discriminating and generalizing you feel no shame for doing it when it comes to individuals that don’t share your political beliefs. You might not realize it but it is a huge part of the problem in our political discourse.

      This was not entirely directed at bfinpetworth, it was just your post that set me off.

      • +1 It’s outrageous and disgusting to call Republicans names, and this bad behavior is why we have partison rancor. On the other hand, the Republicans opposing basic equal treatment for women, gays and ethnic minorities clearly brings us together as a country. Shame on you name callers!! You should tolerate Republican discrimination or you are a hypocritical discriminator!!

      • binpetworth

        Amen! I’m also sick of the assumption that everyone falls along the GOP/Dem voter spectrum. I’m a Green Party supporter, and have every right to not select Obama/Romney (even though my family thinks I’m a pinko commie for doing so!)

      • bfinpetworth

        I don’t see any name-calling in my original post. Simply stating what is a fact – Republicans have engaged in a concerted effort to suppress the vote of working class, minority, and immigrant populations. Even the Republican Governor of Florida Chryst has expressly accused the Fla. R-party of engaging in this behavior. If you don’t like the facts, try to change them rather than complain about the people who are naming them.

        • Correct. That was the reason for the disclaimer. I did not think your post was over the top and I was not attacking you. Yours was the one that just triggered my outburst. I would actually love to see the republican party kick the christian right back to the fringes where they belong. I just think there is a diversity of ideas out there and that the us vs. them stuff only serves as fuel to the fire. We should hold individuals accountable for their actions and not impute each act of idiocy with an entire party, on either front.

        • Grow up.
          DC is one of the most diverse cities in the U.S.
          Except if one does not identify as a democrat.
          Stereotyping all people who identify as republicans because of some is like saying all democrats have the same values as the new black panthers.
          Just grow up.

          • bfinpetworth

            Who are you even talking to?? I’ve not stereotyped anyone. I just want a fair election, which clearly the Republican party does not. If you can’t handle hearing that, then I think it is you that needs to grow up.

        • So the GOP poll inspectors removed by Democratic Party inspectors in Philly is made up, right? Assuming it’s true, it is unacceptable for the Democrats to be denying GOP officials from inspecting polls?


        • Please give some examples of this voter suppression. Real ones, not something you read on Democratic Underground.

      • +100001

        I grew up a liberal democrat surrounded by liberal democrats. I am married to one, and note that the vast majority of my friends consider themselves to be liberal democrats. I’m now an independent, with libertarian leanings.

        And I must say, I have to watch what I say, because if I question received wisdom — as I do, because I’m a questioner — I get blasted and smeared as a dope, or worse.

        I don’t like that : -)

    • If the Republicans don’t cheat, Obama will win all 57 states!

    • “Rant: Republicans trying to steal elections by suppressing voter turnout. Shameful.”

      Huh? Please…

  • Revel: Living in a neighborhood where you see everything from new Americans to nuns out to vote!

    Rant: People who continue to say a’hole things on Facebook about one candidate or another. The willingness to participate. That’s the most important opinion to have.

    • second the facebook thing. have some really good friends that the past couple months have just been put off by their FB political crap. Exercise your freedom to vote, for whoever you want, None of this “do the right thing” BS.

      Rave- Tweed Ride, so much fun, wish everyone looked like and was that happy everyday!

    • Also 2nd the Facebook rant – and add that I hate when people disparage either candidate at a personal level. We’re not all going to agree, but that doesn’t mean we can’t exercise civility when listening to people who have different opinions. Some people get downright nasty when you don’t agree on candidates – and since I’m an independent, I get it from both sides, so it’s not strictly an R thing or a D thing. Frustrating.

  • Rant: Dealing with the administration at UDC is like dealing with with children. They have no idea what they are talking about. Who gave these people jobs?!

    Rant: Class until 9:40 tonight, doubtful the professor will let us out early for the election.

    Revel: Going on a mini-vacation in 2 days!!

    • MsNesbitt

      I also have class tonight! 🙁 Wishing I had the foresight to save up one of my 2 excused absences for tonight. Fingers crossed that we’ll be let out early, but since class was cancelled last week due to Sandy, it’s not looking good.

      Rave: Friends who will save me a seat at the bar until I get there!

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: The creeping crud is going around the office. Everyone is coughing and sniffling and sneeing.

    Rant: I keep forgetting my key to the left of the x key doesn’t work. I wonder how long it will take to get a new keyboard.

    Hopeful: Hoping the voting lines are shorter this afternoon.

  • Rave: Election day! I love seeing everyone who’s excited and out there voting.
    Rant: I will be on pins and needles watching the returns come in this evening, it’s already stressing me out.
    Rave: Still glowing from the fantastic weekend I had!

  • Rant: I registered for an absentee ballot back in September. Having not received it, I called my election commission yesterday to ask about its status. They told me they mailed it October 2. Correct address (quadrant, suite number, zip code and all) too. So, somebody either stole/lost/misplaced my absentee ballot. So, I’m really bummed.

    Rave: Potlucks.

  • Rave: Voted last week

    Rant: Hiss boo. Was told I’m not getting an engagement ring until AFTER the wedding. Isn’t showing off your ring part of the fun of being engaged?! Wahh!!!

    Rave: I have the best fiancé!

    Rant: After my sister’s drama filled wedding, I just want to go to Vegas. Anyone have any good destination wedding ideas/tips?

    • Can I recommend a brunch wedding? We did it because my mom got out of the cancer clinic at Duke the DAY BEFORE our wedding – we knew we would cut it close. So, we got married at 10am, had a brunch reception with Mr. Omelette and were on our way to a quiet weekend by 1pm. It was so great to have a small crowd of people who loved us and no drama. Plus we did our pictures two weeks before. Least stressful wedding ever.

      • anon. gardener

        We did the same thing – brunchy-lunchy wedding around noon on a Sunday, which made everything so much less expensive. Re: the ring, meh, not a big deal. I find the whole showy ring thing to be a bit distasteful, and I am constantly amazed at how much people spend on an engagement ring. Spend five thousand dollars when you’ve been married for ten years and can better afford it.

        • I also think most engagement rings are distasteful. I find a simple gold band to be a better representation of what a marriage is, at least in my head – i.e. being happy with simple things that money can’t buy. Take the money and go on an amazing vacation – memories will last you a lifetime.

        • Brunch wedding here too – loved it!
          I think spending a ton of money on the rings a little goofy but I do agree with the OP that it’s nice to have an engagement ring. It doesn’t have to be glitzy of expensive. Mine is my grandmother’s and I adore it.

      • em

        We had a Sunday brunch wedding catered by Mr. Omelette, too. It was great. We wed at 11, had cocktail hour, brunch, toasts, and dancing and were done by 4. The downside of brunch wedding is that folks do start to drift away earlier and don’t dance as much, but it was still tons of fun!

    • I wanted to get married in Vegas. DH vetoed because he said his mom and sister would thing it would be “classless” (then his sis had a Jewish lobster bake, so….yeah). When he got back from Afghanistan, we went to Vegas and took the wedding pictures of the wedding I wanted – it really made me wish I had gotten married there!

      The makeup and photos were awesome. Vegas can be beautiful and it can be very classy if you make the effort. I highly recommend it – people will come.

    • I went to a destination wedding in Mexico a year ago, in San Miguel de Allende. It was fantastic! 80% of wedding guests fit into 2 giant rental houses, food was amazing, DJ rocked, and the scenery can’t be beat. Plus you can just have the ceremony, dinner and dancing in the house that you rent – most of them had gigantic inner courtyards.

      • only problem is that you price out loved ones when you do a wedding like that. if you’re okay with it, then cool, but if you choose to do an expensive-to-get-to destination wedding you cannot harbor even an ounce of resentment for people who aren’t willing or able to spend their savings and only vacation time on going. just sayin’. I missed a dear friend’s wedding because of this and it still breaks my heart. we haven’t been as close since.

    • My wife and I got married in Beaver Creek, CO over Labor Day. It wasn’t a destination for either of us completely, as I’m from CO and she lived there for a number of years, but we figured we’d make it one since 90% of our guests were from out of state. Was really awesome, lots to do and beautiful place. SUrprisingly, we managed to do pretty well price-wise as well.

    • Leave the city for a wedding for sure. Prices in DC are insane! We got married outside of Asheville and it was quite inexpensive. Beautiful site and great food (at a fantastic price).
      Also, look into honeymoon registries to help fund a great trip. You’ll need it after the stress of planning a wedding!

      • We didn’t have a honeymoon (well, my husband had one courtesy of the Marine Corps) but I didn’t find wedding planning stressful at all.

        I think most of the stress seems to come from 1) a long engagement and 2) a bridal party. I had neither – 6 months to plan and execute and my sister was the maide of honor, dog was the ring bearer. The longer the engagement, the more little stuff you have to nit pick over. We also did a Sunday brunch (at the Palomar with Urbana food – SO good). So it is what you make of it.

  • Rave: Voted!
    Rant: Absentee so no voting sticker!
    Rave: Skype – so my husband in China can watch the election results as they roll in.
    Rave: Apple cider caramels – made them this weekend and they are awesome.

  • binpetworth

    Rave: It’s National Nacho Day!!

  • novadancer

    Rave: based on reports of the lines at my precinct, feeling good I spent 45 minutes voting on friday!
    Rave: after two years, we finally bit the bullet and are putting in a master closet (yay for no longer having to share a tiny closet on a different floor of the house).
    Rant: between the closet and flood repairs, we need part time jobs 🙁

  • Rave: I started my new job yesterday! After being let go at the end of August, I wasn’t sure what was going to come next. Thrilled about this new company and the opportunities it presents.

    Rave: We get to VOTE today! Makes me feel all red, white, and blue.

    Rave: Thanks to binpetworth for the tip about National Nacho Day! I’ve been staying away from the nachos since I started the Weight Watchers, but clearly today must be an exception!

  • Rant: The line to vote this morning was crazy.

    Rant: Inside Ceasar Chavez was so disorderly. One of the electronic machines broke and I coudn’t even get a pencil to write without making multiple on heard request that not all the stations to had pencils.

  • Revel: Not going to watch the results tonight on any mainstream media. I’m done with the lies and the shameless and paltry ploys for ratings. Fat wallets and greedy small minds are dividing our country. This election was almost as bad as state controlled media and propaganda, but instead of pointing us towards one candidate, it pitted us against each other for ratings.

    Rave: The only price I paid for expressing my democracy was temporary loss of sensation in the extremities. Not bad.

  • Rant: Well, I’m early voting from now on. This was my first time voting for president non-absentee, and I sure learned my lesson.

    Revel: Great, (mostly) patient, diverse crowd at my polling place! Made me almost teary. Democracy!

    Rant: It was a mess inside the Latin American Youth Center in C Heights. I don’t know how most people–those with inflexible work schedules, small children, etc. manage to vote on election day. Took me 2+ hours.

    Revel: I’m genuinely inspired to volunteer as a poll worker in a future election.

  • Anyone going out tonight to watch the returns?
    I know David Grosso’s party is at Chez Billy, and the big DC Dem party is at the Hyatt on NJ Ave. Anyone know of any others?

  • Rave: Seeing Muriel Bowser at Powell Elementary this morning when I went to vote!! Now I know what it means to be starstruck in DC… 🙂

    Rave: Seeing a 103 year old woman cast her ballot this morning.

    Rant: People b!tching about long lines. Sh! Seeing people exercise their right/responsibility/priviledge to vote is the coolest.

  • msmaryedith

    Rant: There’s a tiny part of me that wishes I still lived in VA so that my vote would matter more. Voting in DC is a bit anticlimactic.

    • Eh, look on the bright side: you’d have to live in Virginia in order to vote there.

      • msmaryedith

        🙂 I kinda liked living in Old Town.

        • people love to rag on va, but there are some really great parts. old town is definitely one of them.

          • Old Town is beautiful, but talk about stuffy! The place practically shuts down at 9pm and the residents complain about everything. At least it was that way when I lived there 6 years ago. I think it would be a great place to retire if you have the money though.

    • The Presidential vote may not make much difference in DC, but there were some other important elections on the DC ballot this time.

  • Rave: Voting for Romney in Virginia, where my vote may actually make a difference (unlike when living in DC).

    Rant: I just can’t seem to warm up today.

  • RAVE: The kids from Pediatrics came trick-or-treating down our hall today and they were PRECIOUS. It’s heart-wrenching yet heart-warming at the same time to see these kids, in all states of health/illness, all dressed up and having a great time. I made some Halloween decorations for the office and when they came around I donned my pirate hate and greeted everyone with “Yarrrr, Happy Halloween!”. What a great morning.

    Rave (not so awesome): We have leftover candy! I just had some Nerds…can’t remember the last time I ate Nerds! (ohboysugarrush)

    Rant: Told the Boyfriend that there has to be some change. I can no longer handle him missing EVERYTHING and only seeing him for a few hours on Sunday night and *possibly* on Wednesday night. We’re in a long distance relationship–Old Town and Bethesda. So it’s either we change for the better or we change for the worse. Now I just need the guts to stick with it and not give in.

  • prediction: the next few weeks will see some DC politicians go down.
    it’s going to be a very interesting year in DC.

  • Rant/Rave: ANC 6D05 candidate Grace Daughtridge was arrested at a polling place. Apparently she assaulted a guy for messing with her signs. Used some homophobic slurs while she was at it. Stay classy, Southwest.

  • Rant: MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, this guy needs to retire.

    Between MSNBC and Fox, not sure who’s the bigger problem. Hopefully I’ll get to see hologram Wolf Blitzer tonight!

  • OBAMA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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