Random Reader Rant and/or Revel


Photo by PoPville flickr user johnmcochran2012

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.

81 Comment

  • REVEL: Got our first rent renewal offer on our apartment (moved in Jan 1, 2012). The rent is going up by only $50 total for our massive 2 BR loft. That’s less than a 2% increase. HOLLA.

  • Not so serious rant: I did not win powerball. My dream of coming into work and giving 90 seconds notice will not come to pass.

  • RANT: tired of being ignored by employers. tired of the cost of living of this city. tired of being tired of both of the above.

  • Good for DC: We’re on track to have the lowest number of murders in literally decades.

    Bad for DC: DC Public Schools ranked dead last in their high school graduation rate even while they are spending more per student than just about anywhere. Money is not the panacea, folks!

    • The kids have to actually be in the classroom to learn something instead of out robbing people.

      • Pretty stupid point to make. The vast majority of kids are not punks.

        However, there’s plenty of kids in the classrooms all day who don’t pay attention and make it difficult for others to learn. I feel bad for/totally respect teachers. I don’t know how they have the patience.

        • Make sure to follow up on that comment after they rob you.

          • Rant: I remember a couple of years ago when there was a post on PoP from a cop’s point of view. I commented about truancy, and wondered why kids out and about in the city were not being picked up during the day. His answer was something akin to “that’s a waste of our time/we can’t be following kids around when there are real criminals out there”. Other PoP readers commented along the same lines., which I found absurd. And now, suddenly, the idea of truancy being a direct link to criminal youth is all over the internet. I guess something needs to be a *trendy topic* to be important enough for most people.

    • You’re comparing two different kinds of rates.The murder rate has a denominator of all DC residents.

      The DCPS grad rate applies only to DCPS students. But, DC youth go to in equal numbers to publicly funded charters, plus there are many kids in private and religious schools, and many kids use publicly funded vouchers. So, the overall DC rate of graduation among DC youth is much higher than the DCPS subset.

      Still a rant, though.

    • This is one of those cases where you cannot correctly compare DC to a list of the 50 states. Urban schools typically have lower graduation rates than city schools, so when looking at a state overall the suburban & rural schoolswill skew the numbers as opposed to looking at the cities individually. When you compare DC to other large cities, the ranking is not so bleak – in a 2008 study, DC’s rate ranked 22nd out of the 50 largest city school systems. (Ahead of Boston, Houston, New York, Philly, and NYC, among others.) Of course there is still vast amounts of improvement needed in DC, but it is important to see the problem clearly. (The study was by Editorial Projects in Education, the publisher of Education Week magazine.)

  • Rave: Good things going at work–got an annual award from my organization and am hoping to land a big contract soon.

    Rant: Personal life isn’t going so well. Not sure why it’s so hard to have both.

    • Additional rave: I just finished re-reading the Poisonwood Bible. I first read it years and years ago, before I got into development work, and have been thinking for a while that it would be interesting to go back and read it again now that I have been working in Africa. So glad I did. It is such a beautifully written book and a good reminder for all of us development workers to be mindful of what has come before us.

      Also, I found tucked in the pages the receipt from when I bought the book at the Atlanta airport and a ticket stub for a flight to DC in August of 2000. I was on my way here for my first (of many) interviews for a development-related job. I didn’t get that job, and my life ended up taking a pretty winding path to where I am today. But twelve years later I am where I set out to be.

  • Rant: on a small narrow road in Howard area this morning, stopped to help a cyclist who’d been struck and was badly injured. While he lay semi-conscious and bleeding, and a few of us stopped to provide aid, a motorist felt the need to roll down his window as he drove by and say “Got only himself to blame…bikes riding up and down this street like they own it.” If I hadn’t been busy *with the man bleeding on the street*, I would have gone through this a-hole’s window. I mean, for the love of god.

    Bikes and cars both belong on the road, and we want more bikes. Both bikes and motorists need to be responsible. But more than anything, they have to stop viewing each other as a nuisance or with suspicion — hostility makes everyone *less* safe.

  • Rant: I was so excited about a guy I started dating. It’s not a good relationship but I don’t want to give up on it or him. I know better. What’s wrong with me?

    • this exactly. why is it not a good relationship?

      • He has a lot of wonderful qualities but the less wonderful qualities are relationship destroyers. For example, he’ll be angry about one thing but express it in a way that you don’t know that’s the real issue and I can try to encourage him to talk to me about what’s really bothering him but he’s not open to those conversations.

        I’m trying to convince myself that we just need more time to figure each other out and talk things through to come to an understanding but that’s wishful thinking.

        • Allison

          It’s good you recognize that it’s wishful thinking. Once one reaches a certain stage of adulthood, if they haven’t already developed communication and conflict resolution skills, they never will. You may want to consider whether enjoying the ride now is worth the risk of potentially getting more and more attached to him, and then suffering worse heartbreak later when you eventually have to break it off because of all the deal breakers.

          • Thank you. You are so right. The hard part is doing something about it.

          • “Once one reaches a certain stage of adulthood, if they haven’t already developed communication and conflict resolution skills, they never will.”

            (I’m anon 10:58 am) … I actually don’t believe that’s true — or at least I really hope it isn’t! I am an adult, and I like to think that I’m still developing those skills, and probably always will be… of course that doesn’t mean OP should necessarily wait around for this guy, because change is slow and hard.

          • Actually, I wanted to come back and say the same. I think people can change. I don’t think he wants to.

    • Could be off base here but I would hazard a guess that “what’s wrong with you” is that you don’t value yourself highly enough to believe that you deserve to be in a GOOD relationship, and so you’re settling for “meh”

      • You’re probably right to a certain extent. I also miss being in a relationship and this one isn’t all bad so I’m getting some benefit. The alternative is being alone again.

        • I can’t imagine that many relationships are “all bad” — I would think even the worst ones have things that keep people around. So yeah, you’d have to give up a lot of the things you like along with the things that are making you unhappy, so if feels like going backward in your love life… but it’s not. Step 1 to finding the relationship you want: BE SINGLE!

          I know it’s not easy though… I say all of this from experience because in the past I’ve always been the person who has a really hard time letting go and needs to feel like there’s absolutely beyond a shadow of a doubt not even a .001% chance of things working before I’m willing/able to walk away.

          It sounds like you’re pretty clear-headed about this, though, and will know how much time to give to see if he can give you what you need, and when/if it’s time to move on.

  • Rave: Clean bill of health from the dermatologist (family history of melanoma here….)
    Rave: Finished the book Wild by Cheryl Strayed – it was awesome. Makes me want to head out and hike! Starting in on Unbroken now.

    • Allison

      Hey Britt, how often do you go to the dermatologist and at what age would you recommend starting to go regularly? I’ve also had family with a mole here, a thing there, removed, and as I recall my entire childhood was one long sunburn. (Curse ye Scotch-Irish heritage!) I’ve never been to the dermatologist for a cancer screening.

      • My grandfather died of melanoma and my uncle has it now and my brother had it at 24 (but is ok now!) – so I go in and get checked every year, even if I do not have any particular areas I’m concerned about. It’s great to get a baseline from a doctor (they can tell you what spots to keep an eye on, when to return, etc.) – I used Dr. Perkins and he was great!

      • I went to the dermatologist for a “mole scan” for the first time in September. My fair Irish skin, blonde hair, and green eyes put me at risk, so I wanted to at least get a sense of what to look for. I definitely recommend going for that first baseline appointment- it is really easy. They examine you, literally, from head to toe. They told me that unless anything unusual developed, I was fine coming in every two years or so. Those with a known family history or actual occurrence of skin cancer may need to go more often.

      • anon. gardener

        I go once a year as well. Dr Hendi in Chevy Chase is awesome, and his office is right near the metro. He specializes in skin cancer surgery.

    • Unbroken is awesome!

  • Rave: Huge shipment of ski-pants in Marshalls (CH) yesterday – makes me think about snow and maybe skiing again!

    Rave: House is almost restored to order after Thanksgiving – 17 loads of laundry later.

    • YES! I cannot wait to get back out on the slopes (especially after having two knee surgeries over the past two winters!)!

      • Rave: Just booked tix yesterday to go to Montreal to go skiing at Mont Tremblant. I love skiing in Colorado, but with the time difference, distance from airport to ski resorts, etc etc, was looking for something closer but better than what’s in driving distance. Anyone been to Mont Tremblant?

        Double Rave: Turns out Montreal now has an Ice Hotel. I’ve always crazily wanted to stay in one of these insane places and my BF is up for it. Woot! Hopefully I will return to DC without losing all my digits to frostbite.

        • Tremblant is awesome. It’s totally like a European-style ski town in Switerzerland and Italy. You don’t even feel like you’re in North America.

          And definitely take a night and a day to check out Montreal. And, uh, be sure to go to the Canadian Ballet (if you’re into that). ;-)

          • Sweet. Did you rent a car from Montreal to Mont Tremblant? Trip Advisor is trying to scare me into taking a bus by saying there are constant blizzard conditions.

  • Rant: When people don’t move back to fill in on the buses, to create space in the front. It’s so annoying, and frustrating for everyone trying to get on the bus.

    • Allison

      Same with metro cars. If there’s space in the middle, I’ve just taken to shoving my way through in a way that is not as polite as I could be. I’m not missing a train where there’s perfectly enough room just because someone is too inconsiderate to relocate away from the doors.

    • Urgh – Agree! The other day I had three buses go by without stopping because they were ‘full’ – except there was space at the back although all the standees were bunched up in the front.

  • Coffee Maker at work is BROKEN. Admin Services claimed it be fix by today. It isn’t. Kiss productivity goodbye when I have to take 20 mins to go to Saxby’s.

    • My coffee maker died just before Thanksgiving. I bought a replacement on Craigslist for $5.00 – works great – but it makes very loud, moaning, hissing & burbeling noises that sound like orgasms and scare the dog.

  • Rave: happy to be having a baby after going thru infertility.
    Rant: I am truly exhausted, back is killing me and I feel like Im still so far from the finish line. I just wish I could take the next month off from work.
    Rant: husband needs to quit with the late nights and get these shenanigans out of his system now.

  • we are having an insanely hard time trying to find an apartment. i think i’m going to lose my mind, it’s that frustrating.

    • Are you having a hard time finding one you like? Is it a price issue? What neighborhoods are you looking at, and what are you looking for?

      My boyfriend and I didn’t have a hard time finding things in our price range, but we did have a hard time landing an apartment. Three apartments were swept out from underneath us before we could claim them (we’re talking a turnaround of less than 24 hours). Next time we went to see one, we had our checkbooks ready and were prepared to sign on site.

      • Price / like / neighborhood problem. We’re looking along the red line from Bethesda to Woodley, focusing on English basements but keeping it under $1600. Also looking at Del Ray and Old Town in the same price range.
        We found a great place in Cleveland Park but got swept, hardcore :/

  • Rave: I’m pregnant! Just found out this morning.
    Rant: Did not win Powerball so I’m sitting at work staring off into space all day instead of enjoying the news with my husband.
    Rave: At least I have a job? This is debatable.

  • Rave: I got the apartment! Moving to Stadium Armory, yay!
    Rave: I have an amazing boyfriend and feel so blessed to be in a happy, healthy relationship (after being in a bad relationship for 3 years!). Tip to all the single ladies: date the nice guy, not the popular guy. Give guys a chance, even if you are not immediately attracted to them. Nerds make great boyfriends!

  • RANT: What’s the point of running 6-length cars on the Red Line during rush hour? It’s already the busiest line in the system. When the a short train stops at a place like Metro Center or Chinatown, it causes a massive rush on the last car.

    The easiest and cheapest way to increase capacity and relieve pressure on the system would be to only run 8 length cars during rush hour. The Chinatown red line platform was an mess yesterday when two 6-length cars come in row. Crowds were backed up all the way back to the escalators down to the yellow/green line! It was nearly impossible for people to get off the train because the crowds were so dense.

    • I’ve never understood this either. And why when they run the 6-car trains, do they pull all the way up to the front of the platform? If they left one car-space, at least they’d be splitting the massive rush between the first and last cars.

      • I think this has to do with the trains currently being in manual drive mode, meaning the drivers are actually driving. Once they go back to automatic, they should do the spacing as you describe.
        I think.

    • Maybe they are trying to foster patience.

  • Rave: Crackheads across the street have been handed their walking papers, furniture going out on the lawn. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

  • Rave: My home appraisal came back. I have 20% equity.
    Rant: All those articles that say if you bought a home with the past 7 years, that it’s likely that you are underwater had me stressed out.

  • Emilie504

    Rave: Pal from college has moved to town!

    Rant: Not sleeping well so soooo tired. I feel like a zombie.

  • anon. gardener

    Rant: got new glasses on Monday. adjustment period did not go well, and today i noticed an imperfection in one lens. directly in my reading/viewing area. took them back, because clearly i need a new lens made, and the optician immediately starts the CYA. Please, the defect is pretty obvious. Just admit it’s a bad lens and get it ordered. Don’t intimate that I’m a lunatic complainer. what has happened to customer service and quality control? is there any place besides Costco that reliably delivers quality glasses?

    • saf

      Carr & Busch, over by Dupont Circle. NOT cheap. They get the glasses right.

    • That sucks about your lenses. I just picked up my new glasses (well old frames, new lenses) from America’s Best – they’re great, no problems and it was a quick turn around. Also, only $185 for my ridiculous prescription!

    • anon. gardener

      Next year I’ll check out Carr & Busch. My glasses are not cheap, no matter what – progressives. I think America’s Best takes my insurance. I’m seriously thinking of opening an FSA just to pay for glasses, so I don’t have to limit myself.

      • saf

        We both wear progressive lenses, and mine are quite strong. Nobody could get our glasses right. So that’s exactly what we did – FSA! Now we can get well-made glasses.

    • Warby Parker has great, quality glasses for $95. They’re a young company but I loved the service and quality and have recommended them to many friends as well. They’re online!

  • Rant: It’s one of those days when I just. Can’t. Stop. Eating! I’ll have to roll myself to the bus stop tonight.

    Rant: I’ve only had my Nook for one week and it froze on me today. Thinking about replacing it with a Kindle.

    Rant: Computer is acting funny…only letting me type a few words at a time before I have to click on the box. Maybe I have a strong electromagnetic current?

    Rave: It’s almost 3 p.m. on Thursday!

    Rave: Top Chef results last night.

  • Rant: 9am this morning, am walking my dog on 16th street by MeridianHill/MalcolmX Park.

    A lady on a bicycle is riding down 16th street, in the street, on the WRONG side of the street. When cars come near her, she swerves from lane to lane and back again. Drivers were stopping as they were totally confused, and she just kept on going all the way down the hill.

    I was in shock. When she passed me, she was singing/humming, totally oblivious to the danger she is causing. I have seen some stupid shit out of cyclists, but this really took the cake.

  • Rant: I’m having a bad time at work. Im in a rut, and can’t get out.

    Rant: Really in a hole financially. I have no savings and so many things I have to pay off. I’m horrible at handling money and know I need to be better at saving and paying things off, but I feel like I’ll never be able to do either.

    Rave: Had a good date yesterday.

  • Rant: This time of year really kicks my depression into overdrive. People at my job don’t realize that I am barely holding it together.

    Revel: This video if the first dog Bo is sweet.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lce5gWKgMXI&feature=share&list=PL8C61A61D646F0865

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