Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user Joe 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.

97 Comment

  • binpetworth

    Rave: Got my DC tax refund one week after I submitted my paperwork!

    (Minor) rant: Would’ve liked a little of that snow the northeast got this past weekend. But at least it was beautiful and sunny.

  • Any sugestions for getting out of this rut? Bored, eating like a pig, imbibing a bit too much. I seriously don’t give a crap about anyting.

    • Exercise. Get some running shoes, buy a bike, join a gym, take some self-defense classes. It really helps physically and mentally.

      • ^^ Agree with what they said. It’s so hard at first to start exercising, but it really does help make you feel better.

        • I’m at the gym 6 days a week, running, lifting weights, dance class, working with a trainer. And I’m still eating like crap and drinking too much and generally in a funk. Sometimes it’s just seasonal, and you have to push through.

      • There are many days when I don’t feel like exercising but I tell myself that it doesn’t matter if I don’t feel like doing it. Do it anyway.

        • I actually enter it into my calendar, like any other appointment.

          • I enter it into my calendar too. I also try to do fitness classes with the same instructors every week; I look forward to seeing them and I feel like they’re expecting me so I can’t miss it.

    • Vitamin D, it works wonders for Seasonal Affective Disorder! Also get full spectrum light bulbs in your house, they mimic sunlight which wards off depression from being indoors. Don’t take synthetic drugs, they only make things worse. And running does help, but the vitamins and natural light will help first!

      • Load of hooey. We’re not in the arctic, and it’s not the solstice. It’s not hardly winter, and there’s plenty of sun.

        Stop trying to treat yourself for anything, either with exercise, or booze, or meds, and get out and notice that there’s a whole world out there. It’s easy to be bored with oneself; it doesn’t mean you get to wallow in it.

        • Wow, Anonymous. Are you equally dismissive of clinical depression??

          Read up on seasonal affective disorder (SAD):


          • As someone who suffers from Seasonal Affective Disorder, I take great offense at your dismissiveness. And to the poster asking how to climb out of it, others are correct: exercise, get as much sunshine as you possibly can, Vitamin D, and a light box (all of which I employ or have used in combination) are truly effective. Good luck – it’s really hard, but we are fortunate to be on the downhill side of the winter season now.

        • Does making needlessly snarky comments brighten YOUR day? The person is clearly not wallowing in his/her funk, but is trying to find a way to break out of it.

          • You’re so willing to ignore the drinking, diagnose SAD, and prescribe milk and exercise. How very Road to Wellville. I know SAD is real and hard, but the worst 90 days of the year have just passed which is why I don’t understand why so many are so certain of the cause. Sure, exercise can’t hurt, but if YOU think he’s depressed, then you ought to suggest an actual mental health check up, right, not just a lamp and a vitamin. Me, I diagnose a need for a simple change in attitude and routine, and definitely stop hitting the bottle.

        • -1 Because who needs vitamins anyway!!!?! Bunch of hooey! *SMH*

        • Not hooey at all–it’s actually not that difficult to acquire a vitamin D deficiency, especially in the winter when there’s less daylight and especially if (like most of us, I imagine) your job involves spending nearly all day indoors. I’ve had a vitamin D deficiency in the past (yes, diagnosed by a doctor based on bloodwork), despite having a fairly active, walking-heavy routine outside of the 8-10 hours every weekday that I spent at work.

    • Thx all. Heading to the office gym right now.

    • Get a massage. 😉

  • Wa wa wa wa waaaaa….I used to work with a guy who actually had the chance to play poker with Redd Foxx! Classic tv for sure…

  • Rant: My five year mimicking the kissing from the Bar Refeili super bowl ad. Thanks CBS.

    • saf

      OK, this is a serious question – please note, I find that commercial rather gross. As a matter of fact, I think extreme close-ups on slobbery kisses are gross in general. (Then again, I rather like well done love scenes.)

      Anyhow, I don’t really see much difference between that commercial and many of the other commercials. It’s all one big sell-fest, with each one trying to top the other. Add in the violence inherent in football, and I don’t understand why people are so invested in it.

      So the question is – how is that one commercial different from all the others? And why is it any more potentially offensive than both the other commercials and the game itself?

      • I could pick probably 20 or so commercials that would fit the bill. I monitor what my kids watch and try to screen out the stuff that is not age appropriate. That one kind of just snuck through because it did not present itself as obviously inappropriate when it started.

      • Oh and football is violent but it is not gratuitously or graphically violent. It is a game that is controlled, requires skill, dedication etc. I can place it into better context than murderers, terrorists, etc. etc.

    • With or without tongue?

  • Rant: Plead guilty to second and get out in 21 years. SO, in DC, the punk kills someone in cold blood on the streets of DC at a bus stop, admits it to the court, and gets 21 years. He’ll be back on the street in his early 40s to enjoy the rest of his life. So not cool!

    • Not knowing anything about the case, 21 years sounds like an adequate sentence for a crime like that.

      • For murder? Bernie Madoff got 150 years.

      • Good rational answer. There is probably more to the case than you may know. Silly armchair judges.

        • It’s perfectly rational to believe a 21 year sentence for second degree murder is rational. That’s an extremely easy hurdle to get over. Adequacy is determined by the facts, which I never claimed to know.

          • It’s good to withhold your highly valued opinion until you know the facts. It will greatly help your logic and reasoning in the future. 🙂

    • Im as liberal as the next guy……until it comes to the death penalty. I am totally for it.

      • Yeah! We have this infallible justice system, so why not make sure all crimes get permanent punishments? Its not like someone could find new evidence that proves someone’s innocence years after the trial. And in the totally inconceivable event that that ever happened (and really, who are we kidding, that’s impossible) we always have the ability to bring people back from the dead. So, yeah, death penalties all around!

        • Where did this person say “all around”? Additionally, so you think that there will be “new evidence” to someone that pleads guilty in court? The death penalty is perfect punishment for murderers.

  • Rant: Waiting on documents from the bank so we can finish our taxes.
    Rave: Looks like we’re getting a nice refund, due to all of the medical stuff we’ve paid out of pocket for this year, plus the interest on our new house and student loans.
    Rant: Valentine’s Day. Boo, hiss. What a stupid “holiday”.

  • The baby (8m) has been crying nonstop for over two hours. I’m at my wits end, as are my eardrums.

  • I was astounded to read that there are 600 kids whose families are homeless and are living in DC General right now. Does anyone know if there are organizations in the city working with the families there? A friend of mine is on the board of The Dwelling Place in MoCo, does DC have an equivalent organization? (they provide tempoary housing and help homeless families with kids get back on their feet, often after a parent loses their job and they lose the apartment or house they were living in.)

  • pablo .raw

    Rave: Had a great time yesterday at the New Year’s Parade in Chinatown.
    Rave: I didn’t get in trouble with the police this time 😀
    Rave: Different publications interested in my photos
    Rave: Feeling optimistic today, I can do this!!

  • Rant: This is going to be SUCH a long week for a variety of reasons
    Rant: worried we’ll owe taxes because we sold a lot of assets to buy our new place…at a time we can least afford to owe

    Rave: We did file estimated, so if we do owe, hopefully it will make it hurt less.

    Rave: Thinking of traveling. Have the itch, it hasn’t be scratched in far too long. Rant: cant afford to go anywhere.

    • I will ditto everything you wrote except for the filing estimated taxes. Eek! Hoping I don’t owe too too much, but I’m dreading finding out. I so want to travel, but turns out buying (and furnishing) a house is expensive!

    • It definitely pays to file estimated! I’ve worked with some taxpayers whose withholding on their W-2 was insufficient, and they didn’t realize that in addition to paying the remainder of what they owe at tax-filing time, DC also charges a penalty on top of that for not paying enough all along.

    • Depending on your capital gains/losses on your 1099-B form, you might come out on top! I cashed in my mutual funds (~$11K) to go towards a down payment on our condo, took a bit of a loss, so I avoided the capital gains taxes I was expecting. Seemed to work out well with the ~$4,500 tax return I’m getting back this year 🙂

  • Forgot a rave:
    Homemade carrot soup. Never made it before, but it was a success…no recipe.
    1 leek and 1 onion chopped and sauteed in EVOO and butter (or just evoo if you want vegan)
    2lbs carrots
    1 potato if you want to make it thicker w/o adding dairy
    cook until soft with salt and pepper (add fresh thyme if you have it), add veggie/chicken stock, cook until carrots are easily mashed. blend with stick blender or however you prefer to puree. Bring to simmer and squeeze a little fresh orange/clementine juice if you have them (I was using orange segments for a salad, so I had it with me). I added 1/2 and 1/2 at the end because I had some left over, but it wasn’t necessary.

    Do make this, folks – it was so easy, really inexpensive, and delicious.

    • This sounds good- thanks for the idea!

    • Great with curry too – saute it with the onions. I find carrots way too sweet but the curry & a bit of cumin fixes this.

      • I saw a lot of recipes calling for curry and/or ginger. I like both, but not in soup to a great extent….I think ginger with the orange would be fine. I wanted to really taste carrot – but I could understand adding curry or ginger and it would probably still be great!

    • I like to simmer mine with ginger, star anise, cloves and cardamom. Gives it a slightly more exotic spice profile.

  • Rant: People who have hoarded “supercans” from neighbors, with over 4 strewn all over the alley with their house numbers painted on them preventing anyone from driving through after wind storms. Control your stolen trash cans people.

    Rant: DC supercan design. They are too narrow to hold full trash bags, and also too narrow to stand on their own reliably, much less when wind is blowing.

    Rave: DC auto show was a good outing with my mom & pop last weekend. i was happy I worked close enough to use my work parking garage.

    Rave: Taxes filed!

  • Rave: Treated myself to an americano this morning
    Rant: Barista grabbed my hand inquiring if I had gotten married this weekend because I was “too damn happy” for a monday morning. When I said nope, just happy to be caffeinated he pressed and said “so engaged then?” whaat? can’t a girl just enjoy some stinkin’ coffee!
    Rave2: For the amount of anxiety and change I have been coping with it felt good that someone who really doesn’t know me (but sees me on a fairly regular basis) believes I am glowing with happiness.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Happy Lundi Gras!

    Rave: Supper with the cousins tonight.

  • Rant: Office about to be gutted by a group of people leaving to start a separate group. I’m the only one who knows about it (other than the group leaving) and I can’t tell anyone – making plans for business and projects as though nothing is happening SUCKS.
    Fingers crossed my exit strategy works so I’m only have some months stuck here while things go all topsy turvy.

  • Rant: Still sick and not feeling too hot.
    Rant: So much work to do this week – really packed with tasks and projects.
    Rave: Evenings packed because we have two awesome concerts and I’m hitting the barn three nights this week :-D.
    Rave: Birthday on Sunday and we’ll be in LONDON!!

  • Rant: broken tooth
    Rave: Dentist took me right away.
    Rant: $1895, new crown. Very weird to be at work loaded with Novocaine.
    Rave: PoPville provides a place to whine. Thank you.

  • Rave: Spending the weekend in Harpers Ferry.

    Rant/Question: Stupid MARC and Amtrak only arrive late and leave early from Harpers Ferry, making for an odd window for a Friday–Sunday trip. Is it worth spending an extra night? (Friday–Monday.) Also, does MARC run on a weekday holiday?

    • I took a nice Fri-Sun trip to Harpers Ferry 2 summers ago. Not sure if there’s as much to do this time of year (there’s a guy who does historical tours who’s really entertaining, I highly recommend him: http://www.obejoyfull.com/ ) but if you’re staying someplace nice and you bring a good book, should be fun.

      Funnily enough, that quick 1 hr 15 min train ride turned into an 8 hour nightmare on the way home due to some crazy circumstances. I’d also advise bringing water and food for the trip just in case. 🙂

    • MARC doesn’t run on weekday holidays–I’m assuming because such a large part of the ridership is federal employees, they figure it doesn’t make sense to run service when the feds are off. (Although when OPM has a closure due to inclement weather, I think MARC deals with that on a case-by-case basis.)

  • i will use this only for a rant:
    who in this city is responsible for managing street lights? and i don’t mean the ones that lighten up side-walks but the red/orange/green ones?
    On Saturday I drove a friend to the airport taking 14th street. between P street and hitting the highway every street light was red. all the cars along with me had to stop at ever light. going back up 11th after florida, the same story you get a green light and you already see at that very moment the next light turning red.
    what idiot is in charge of that?
    in my home town Cologne in Germany there is a pretty long street that takes you into the city probably about 30 to 40 street lights. but if you drive about 5 miles above the speed limit you will not have to stop at more than 2 lights. that is not by chance that is by design. by managing the street lights the city ensures people drive more or less according to speed limit and you get less cars to get moving again and decreases emissions. there is even a phrase for that in germany called gruene welle … green wave.
    it really can’t be this hard.

    • saf


      And they do it on purpose. They call it “traffic calming.”

      (Insert your own joke about how traffic is the opposite of calming here.)

    • Write an email to DDOT. I had an issue with a stoplight on my way to work, wrote them an email explaining the issue, and they fixed it within 2 weeks.

    • Tip (when heading north back from DC/Arlington): use 12th up to mass, then 15th. Lights are much better than 11th. Unfortunately I don’t have any advice when going south towards DCA/Arlington.

  • Love is for suckas!!

  • rant: skipped breakfast so I was starving at lunch and ate a gargantuan amount of pasta… now I feel so sick. Like a giant, bloated spaghetti blimp.

    Just goes to show you should definitely not skip breakfast!!

  • Revel: Pretty sure I was standing next to Pablo Raw on the red line this morning. I would have said hi, but he had his ear buds in.

  • Rant: Valentine’s Day haters. Honestly, this whole week apparently gives you all mega-phones to spew all this negative energy just because you are single/have a grudge against Hallmark/hate America. You just sound sad! I don’t necessarily *like* the day, but there’s no need for it!

    Rant: My sister is also being a major buzzkill. As is my current job to-do list, this weather, and I lost my iPhone charger somewhere, so that sucks a bit, too.

    Rave: Tomorrow’s going to be better!

    • Your rant #1 riles me up somehow.

      I don’t actively complain about Valentine’s Day, but I can’t imagine complaining about OTHER people complaining about Valentine’s Day.

      The positive/negative aspects of Valentine’s Day are imbalanced. It brings single people down more than it brings coupled people up. Really, the main beneficiaries are restaurants, florists, candy manufacturers, etc.

      • I can’t speak for squish, but I don’t like being made to feel like a Hallmark tool because I enjoy going out to dinner with my sweetheart, making pink heart shaped cookies, and sending roses to my grandmother on Valentine’s Day. Is it really such an evil holiday?

  • Rave: That’s my picture!
    Rant: Cut my hand while washing a glass in the sink.
    Rave: There’s a really nice Walgreens in Van Ness with a walk-in clinic. Bandaged my hand and gave me a tetanus shot.

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