Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr member Mr. T in DC

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.

65 Comment

  • gotryit

    Revel: Closed on a house!
    Revel: Demolition permit! Renovations!
    Rant: Sleep – goodbye.

    • Rant: I think POP (the web site) could use a separate main link to R.R.O.R. posts (a page that lists all/only all R.R.O.R. posts). They seem to get lost in all the other daily posts, and points are often raised here that should get more up-front/long-term attention.

      Rave: Still love this site, it seems to be 10x more interesting than Facebook to me these days. Cheers!

      • em

        +1 for that – if I am busy in the mornings and don’t get to PoP until late in the day or evening, RROR has already fallen off of the front page. And while we’re at it, how about a special link for the cute animals, too?

  • Rant: The giant ditch/pothole by the curb at the intersection of Alaska and Georgia that I have to drive through everyday. Seriously, it’s ridiculous, and it’s been there and getting worse for at least a year.

    Rave: Went back to the gym yesterday after almost a year and a half of pregnancy/ having a new baby and no extra time. Feels good!

  • http://washingtonexaminer.com/police-arrest-10-year-old-for-bringing-toy-gun-to-school/article/2520632

    Am I the only one that sees this as a terrible over reaction? An obviously toy gun with an orange tip. I think a suspension and a parent conference might be warranted (I can see schools having a zero tolerance policy for toy guns) but juvenile hall? Taken into custody?

    • Agreed! This is ridiculous!

    • Yes, I actually brought a very similar toy to school when I was young. 3 of my friends and I routinely shot each other with these little yellow foam things.. it was less powerful than a nerf gun.

      Perhaps it was stupid, but I wouldnt even go that far. it was kids being kids. eventually we were busted, the toys were confiscated, and our parents were called.

      Had I been suspended, expelled, or arrested and thrown in Ju-v, my life would have been irreversibly changed and for no good reason.

      Sure its scary to think about the risks of violence and harm that our children face these days – but what they are more likely to fall victim to is a justice system that lacks any sort of critical thinking and believes “zero tolerance” is a virtue. Ruining lives for toys and tylenol, while kids are still getting molested, raped, beaten, and psychologically tortured by students and teachers alike seems to be a bit of misplaced priorities.

      As far as I’m concerned, getting kids out of the public school system and into private schools with good administrators and a lot of parent consultation is worth the money. It used to be kids went to private school to get away from the other kids… now I think its to get away from the group think, terrible administrators, and inane policies that run rampant in urban and suburban systems alike.

      Kids are going to be kids and trolling to find reasons to put them in jail is absolutely unacceptable.

    • How can he be charged with brandishing a weapon when it was a TOY?? This should have been handled by the school and parents once that was discovered. What a travesty.

      • Actually, I believe the articles said it was NOT a TOY, but a replica. I guess that means it was made of heavy metal and looked like a real gun, not like a tin cap gun or squirt gun. I think that’s why people freaked out.

        Sadly, if it were a black or Hispanic boy toting a look-alike gun, the principal would have called the cops who would have shot first, investigate later.

        • The article I read said that it was a plastic toy gun with an orange tip

        • From the Post: “The handgun was a replica and could not be fired, police said.” also, “The gun had an orange tip, police said, which is an indicator that a gun is a replica.” I haven’t seen it, bu kids, at least my 9 year old, could certainly distinguish an obviously toy gun so I figure this must have appeared more like a real gun than some nerf toy or something.

    • I generally agree that children should not be prosecuted for bringing toys to school, but I also don’t have enough information to jump to a conclusion about what happened here. The article I read was pretty thin.

  • Rave: Met some awesome people at the WABA happy hour last night, and Restaurant Week dinner with friends tonight.

    Rave: Wearing a dress I haven’t worn in a while cause it’s no longer too tight.

    Rant: It’s not Friday yet.

  • Rant: Having to register an out of state vehicle with the DC DMV because my girlfriend with VA tags is a “frequent visitor” despite the fact that she has never parked illegally or broken any zoning restrictions/time limits is absolutely ridiculous to me.

    • How does one get one of these frequent visitor tags?

    • This happened to me as well a few years back. If they see the car enough they assume the person lives there and start the deluge of tickets until you eventually break down and do something about it. Does not matter to them that she is not actually breaking any parking rules.

    • A lot of people claim legal residency out of DC even though they actually live here. This sounds like a way to cut down on parking by people who refuse to register their cars. Sorry that your actually out of state girlfriend got caught up in it.

      • Issuing non-stop (illegal) 100$ residential parking tickets is NOT the correct way for DC to fix the issue of encouraging vehicle registration…

        DC needs to lower “in-state” registration fees and to improve customer service and processing at it’s MVA locations and make the experience much more convenient. It’s the only way to encourage people to register instead of having them cheat the system.

        For years DC has been making a TON of money using these tactics, it’s just like Comcast (overcharging for poor levels of service and support). The ideal of overcharging for service while so many simply escape most fees through privilege or law-breaking. With Comcast, several people simply buy unlocked cable boxes and pay a minimal monthly fee and get free channels while those that don’t know how it’s done pay full price. This has been happening for as long as I can remember. In DC, many people have off-street parking and simply park their non-DC-registered vehicles in their off-street spots to avoid the fees and complicated, expensive registration process that DC has.

        DC Gov also loses tons of money through misappropriation and outright theft… The attitude in DC Gov is simply to just “raise fees annually” to cover the large-scale and wide-spread losses due to corruption and mis-management, despite revenue and population/revenue growth… It’s a giant monster “blob” that will keep consuming everything in it’s path and the raised costs of living will eventually bring DC’s growth to a breaking point.

        • I was under the impression that the main reason that some D.C. residents don’t register their cars in D.C. was that it made their insurance rates go up — not that it had anything to do with the cost of registration or the efficiency/inefficiency of the D.C. DMV.

        • Yes, yes it is the correct way to deal with this problem. Do you have a better idea? The problem with out of state residents having their cars registered in VA, is that they are likely claiming residence in VA, and hence paying VA State Income Taxes. For each person doing this, it is costing DC thousands of dollars a year. If you live in DC, you should be paying state taxes IN DC. Full Stop.

          DC’s DMV is vastly superior to VA’s DMV experience. If you bring the required documents, the DC DMV is actually a fairly pleasant experience. In and out. Regarding lowering the fees, it coudl actually be SUBSTANTIALLY cheaper in DC that Fairfax County. Car taxes in FFX County are $4.57 for every $100 over $20,000. That means you are paying $457 a year on a $30,000 car, whereas in DC that same car costs $1800 to register.

          If you own it outright, it is free to register it in DC. Not certain what your point is mentioning Comcast. The people who buy unlocked boxes are breaking the law, and stealing. The rest of your post is just non-sensical, and reeks of your disdain for government in general, to which I respond, I hear the Ivory Coast is nice this time of year.

          • I hear Somalia has a government so small it fits in a tiny section of Mogadishu, but seriously making excuses for people illegally claiming residency outside DC is absurd. If you can’t afford to live here then don’t move here.

          • people also keep residency in va and md because of the dc public school system.

    • Does the visitor parking permit cure this?

  • Rave: Love the idea of a congestion charge on all out of District autos coming into the city (similar to London’s). This will be epic!

    • Are they really going to do that? Because I LOVE THIS IDEA.

    • What is the point since we are already running a surplus. I doubt it will actually dissuade people from driving, but maybe it will. I guess the ICC is evidence enough that if you charge too much nobody will use the road.

    • Not sure what the particulars on this proposed (?) D.C. congestion charge are (Sir D, can you provide any links?), but some points on London’s congestion charge:

      – It doesn’t apply to all of London, just central London. (Its boundaries are slightly within those of the London Underground’s Zone 1.)
      – It applies to all vehicles, no matter where they’re coming from. (UK license plates don’t indicate any geographical sub-areas, at least as far as I know.)

      • I must correct you on a couple of things re the UK system. First, British registration plates do have a geographic designation on them. The first two letters in the sequence indicate the region and the issuing office respectively. Second, residents of London who live in or adjacent to the congestion zone are provided a 90% discount on the charge.

        • Ahh, thanks for the additional facts.

          I’ve noticed that people in the UK, rather than referring to a car as a (say) 2004 model, will say it’s a “P-reg.” — there’s a letter in the license plate that indicates what year it was issued. Is that the third letter, if the first two indicate the region and the issuing office?

          How far outside the congestion zone boundaries do residents qualify for the 90% discount? (Not all that far, I’d hope!)

  • RAVE: had to visit DMV Vehicle Inspection Center this AM, in and out in less than 10 minutes with an appointment I scheduled ahead of time.

    RAVE: checked my bank once I arrived at the office and IRS deposited my federal return!

  • Revel: Just when I thought my resume had been thrown in the shredder by the hyper Type-A Chief of Staff who interviewed me (I try to look like an overachiever, but the resume and no doubt my pheromones reek of “slacker”), I get an e-mail that the CEO wants to talk to me for an hour next week at the Manhattan headquarters. No endless weeks of waiting for this job.

    Rant: Re-booking previously scheduled flight to Florida and having to stay in a hotel room the night before. This job will end up costing me well over $500 just to apply for.

    Rave: Subway lines from LES or Alphabet City and from Ft. Green drop a block from the HQ. If….

    Rant: Have to figure what to do with my house, where my son expects to move back in rent free, because who can afford two places.

    Rave: Son moving back in, not because he’s unemployed, but because he has a job in the area.

  • RANT: Fixing the scooter is gonna be pricey. I suffered a hard engine seizure in late November and now I’m finally getting around to taking care of it. Debating whether I should sell the bike for scrap parts and buy a newer, more reliable scooter.

    RAVE: Need to do taxes. I am owed a big, fat refund.

    RAVE: Burning Man tickets registration opens today.

  • rave: falling in love more each day
    rave: fun weekend ahead
    rant: WSC. i wish i had a convenient alternative for morning workouts

  • Rant: Home sick (thanks to a co-worker)… ugh.
    Rave: Dogsitting the best dog in the world while home sick. He’s a great buddy.

  • Rave: I found love at the Capital Bike Share Station
    Rave: Its Humpday and I have a reservation at Rasika for Restaurant Week

  • REVEL: Tahoe ski trip only one week away!
    RANT: Can’t ski on said trip because I got a concussion from warm-up local ski day.

  • Rave: Flying to the Rockies in the morning for a ski trip! Whooop!

    Rant: Finishing this report – my mind is already on the slopes.

  • Rant: I want to move into a more “grown up” apartment but am now pretty much priced out of my neighborhood. (Moved in almost three years ago)

    Rave: I have a home and it’s fine enough.

  • Rave: I love me some TurboTax. Because I have used it before now so much of it is pre-filled for me. I just plug-in a few numbers and off we go (and this is with mortgage interest, dividends, capital gains, etc). I don’t think I am exaggerating when I say I did both Federal and DC under 25 minutes.

    Rant: I owe the Feds more than usual this year. Oh well, why give them a loan, right?

    • I don’t understand why people are excited to be getting a big refund. That’s your money the government has held without giving you any interest

      I’d rather end up paying at the end of the year, or having a zero balance on my tax return.

      • Zero balance is best.

        When interest rates are near 0%, does it really matter if I had the money throughout the year or getting it back in one large lump sum? Not really.

        The absolute worst is getting stuck with a big bill in April, which can be difficult to estimate and budget for.

        For my own psychological well being, I much rather prefer to get a large refund rather than owe a large amount. It actually encourages me to live more frugally throughout the year and save even more money throughout the year, since I not only save from every paycheck but then I get large refund (which goes directly into my savings account).

        The refund phenomena does have some social utility, in terms of as a means of forcing savings and it keeps people less-pissed-off at the government. I’ve noticed that people who often need to pay extra taxes in April (either due to owning a business, having alternative sources of income, or because they chose a lower withholding) tend to also really dislike the government, lol.

        • novadancer

          While interest rates are a little less than 1% (see ally), stock returns are much better than that.
          I also recommend visiting the irs withholding calculator (currently down) to figure out if you need to adjust – I do this once a quarter. We usually come within less than $900 (I also have SE income so it’s harder to estimate).

          Then again, I’m an anal accountant who would prefer the IRS not to have a dime any sooner than necessary!

      • I get that but for me it is kind of like forced savings. I usually get a big refund and have grown accustomed to that bump in savings on an annual basis. If I had the incremental amounts in my account each month I am afraid I would not have the discipline to set it aside.

      • Not sure if that was directed at me or in general but I agree, I like to keep what I owe small and not get a large refund. It’s just that this year I owe more than usual so yes I need to adjust my withholdings.

  • Rave: The three nice riders who helped out the older man who fell down the escalator at Fort Totten this morning, face all covered in blood.

    Revel: The man staring intently at the beautiful lady as he sketched her face in his little black book while riding the red line. Fellow passengers beware, someone is drawing you in his little black book.

  • rant: the paralysis of analysis.

  • Rave: Beach trip soon!

    Rant: Colleagues who cannot acknowledge their own shortcomings but instead blame everyone but themselves. Go hassle someone else!

  • Revel: Called 311 to report a large downed branch on the sidewalk. Less than hour later, a truck arrived and transformed it into mulch. Pleasantly surprised!

    Rant: So many work projects I don’t know where to begin.

  • gotryit

    Rave: The creepy flasher guy from a few months ago got sentenced to 18 months in jail + sex offender registry.

  • pablo .raw

    rant: I just want this day to end.

  • Rant: Heading up a week-long fundraiser at work next week and can’t get ahold of the key people I need!

    Rave: Lots of support from other departments has me more-than-pleasantly surprised!

    Rant: Roommates moving out being very pushy about deadline for filling their rooms. Sorry, but you only told me TWO WEEKS ago that you’re moving out–I’m not putting just ANYONE in there. I’m waiting for someone GOOD.

    Rant: Really wanted to pull my hair back and didn’t have hairband…so I used a regular rubberband. I’m going to sorely regret this tonight.

    Revel: Just recently took the Myers-Briggs and have been learning about my personality–ESFP. Starting to realize that I’m not wrong or stupid, I just think and operate differently. Also had the BF take the assessment and suddenly our issues make more sense.

  • skj84

    Rave: Have a resturant week reso at Mintwood place! Yum!

    Rant: Made the reso for a group a month ago and half of them have cancelled at the last minute. While I understand genuine emergencies, I hate it when people RSVP then drop out the day off. When I say i’m attending, I’m attending.

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