Random Reader Rant and/or Revel


Photo by PoPville flickr user ekelly80

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.

108 Comment

  • Revel: Not only did she spend the night, she left behind half a pastrami sandwich from DGS when she went to work. It appears my luck is changing for the better.

  • Rant: This morning flat out sucked – woke up feeling like I’m coming down with something, late out the door, missed a train, Farragut North was a cluster, jackhammering outside the station, came in to a shitstorm of emails and someone got to my favorite coffee mug first.

    Rave: Listening to the Rock of Ages playlist on Spotify – nothing like a little 80s hair metal to make my morning a little better.

  • Rant: Mourning the loss of a wonderful man who shaped my childhood and who I am today. Every time I feel like I’m fine, I think of some other happy memory or something I should have said and crumble all over again.

    • Good concept and investigation — it means the DCTC finally has to acknowledge what we passengers already know — but sheesh, that article is really poorly written.

  • Rant: Headachy and sleep deprived

    Rant: A teenaged daughter who can’t manage to get her makeup done quickly enough to catch the bus. Why yes, I’d love to be late to work so you can get your eyeliner just so.

    Rave: Nothing yet.

  • Rave: Had a great trip to Harpers Ferry over the long weekend. I hiked around outside during the day and in the evening watched lots of TV, including season 2 of The Borgias and the season finale of Downton Abbey. It was a perfect balance of activity and inactivity.

    Rant: Back to stupid job today.

    Rave: It’s already Tuesday.

  • Rant: finally realizing that you are just mediocre at most, if not all, aspects of your life.

    • You know, I feel that way a lot. But I try to remind myself that it isn’t actually true. Maybe you aren’t wildly successful in the traditional ways of measuring success, but there ARE things you’re good at.

      But also, please keep in mind that there’s nothing wrong with being average at some (or even most) things. Not everyone can become the President, a CEO, a movie star, a sports star, etc. The world is filled with people that do a decent but not fantastic job and you shouldn’t feel so badly about that.

      • Also remember that many CEOs, sport stars, and other famous/”successful” people are generally terrible human beings.

        To get to that level of success you often need to sacrifice your basic humanity. Nearly all of us are not willing to make that trade-off since we are not sociopathic attention/approval seekers.

        • Keep telling yourself that if it makes you feel better.

          • Was the snark really necessary here?

          • Mark Zuckerberg: stole Facebook from his friends and diluted the shares of others who helped fund the company.
            Steve Jobs: stiffed The Woz in compensation, stole ideas.
            Banking and Hedge Funds: insider trading and front running their clients are their bread n butter.

            Those are just a few examples. They were all shitty, yet successful, human beings.

          • OK, so maybe zero_sum let a little hyperbole creep in, but the fact is that reaching a superlative level of success often requires personal sacrifices and difficult or unpopular decisions. For some people, other things are more important. My grandfather, for example, passed up a leadership role in a family business and instead pursued a “mediocre” career in the trades because he just wanted to put in a simple hard-day’s work; he didn’t want the role of a boss and the after-hours schmoozing the business required. He turned out to be a happier person and a more involved father and husband for it. I’m a woman and I read all the articles about whether women can “have it all” (most recently the Anne Marie Slaughter piece in The Atlantic), and I think those debates are important–but for me personally, I would much rather have a well-rounded, generally-satisfying life that includes not only a career, but time for hobbies/interests, friends, and my family (which at this point, doesn’t include kids). If a mediocre career comes with that, then so be it.

          • Actually he’s right. Study after study has shown people reaching CEO status, executives, etc are most of the time sociopaths lacking basic empathy, compassion, and what it means to be human.

          • Yes, Idaho Ave, that’s what I’m referring to.

            Many CEOs or other powerful executives exhibit psyco- or sociopathetic tendencies. Most of us aren’t hardwired that way or refuse to learn those traits.

            Some interesting discussion:
            http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffbercovici/2011/06/14/why-some-psychopaths-make-great-ceos/

    • There will ALWAYS be people that have it better than you, and there will ALWAYS be people that have it worse. Keep your head up.

    • Perhaps you’re excellent at self-assessment. Most of us think we’re above average, but really we’re just C students most of the time.

  • Rant: Lost my voice, dry painful cough woke me up early, couldn’t get back to sleep.

  • Rave (kinda): Moved to Alexandria from Columbia Heights this weekend. Its so unnervingly quiet. I had a hard time falling asleep because I didn’t hear any sirens. When I did fall asleep it was the best sleep ever.
    Revel: I live close to work and school now.
    Rant: Super dry skin.

    • Allison

      I had the same experience moving from CH to Southwest. BEST SLEEP EVAR! So long, annoyingly loud neighborhood!

      • Girl! No loud music. No smell of week floating under my door. I know this new place wont be perfect but Im happy where I am now. Will miss Pho 14 though. So if you all know where I can get some good Pho in Alexandria holla at me (oh and I dont like Pho 75 :( )

        • Caphe Banh Mi is decent. it’ on Cameron and Royal in Old Town. really good thai iced tea.

        • Much easier to just install triple pane windows in my DC house… I’m not ready to move out of the city yet, the commute back to work in DC is way too frustrating. FML.

        • Viet House on Route 1 (near the Fast Eddie’s) is awesome–when I worked in Old Town, my coworkers and I would go there at least once a week.

          • Second the place next to Fast Eddies. We eat there regularly for lunch away from work.

          • Thanks folks! Pho 75 is ok but I have a heartfelt hatred for all things cilantro and they just put too much in it. When I ask for no cilantro they dont oblige…the folks at Pho 14 do..so thats why I like them. PLUS I like Pho 14′s take out packaging better. And Pho 14 is where i broke my pho cherry….you know you always have a soft spot for your first.

  • Rant: It seems every time I have either a harrowing commute or a great commute where something fun/unexpected happens it doesn’t get recorded b/c I forget to take the cap off my helmet camera. Great convo w/ another rider on the way in today and while I probably got most of the audio, it will be all black video.

    • you sound like a creeper

        • Wow…really? A creeper? Piss off Anonymous 1 & 2!

          I record my rides in case anything happens to me so there is visual evidence that my wife can use to get restitution. I happened to ride w/ a cool dude today and we had lots in common. Really helped the ride go by.

          Again, suck it…measure it, then suck it again.

          • If I can play devil’s advocate, the reason you seem peeved was not because of your stated purpose for wearing the camera (evidence in the event of an accident) but because you wanted to play back a conversation with a cool dude (with video) that you recorded. I don’t think that is creepy if the person knows they are being recorded. But it is a bit creepy if they don’t.

          • Not to mention illegal too.

          • It’s a pretty obvious camera, mounted on an otherwise camera free helmet and one of the things we talked about was our commuting rigs.

            As for illegal…we were in public where there is no expectation of privacy. I wasn’t in his bathroom taping him dropping a deuce. Jeez!

    • Nope. Sorry. Still creepy. And if you are really that worried about getting smashed up maybe it’s time to grow up and get a car.

  • Rant: My boyfriend’s mother passed away, he’s an only child and they were very close, he is devastated.

    Rant: So tired and depressed this morning…

    • I am so sorry – I lost my mother this past summer and it has been really rough. If he’s at all open to it, there are a lot of grief support groups and grief counselors around…

  • RANT: Alero on U Street is terrible. I will never go back there again.

  • rant/revel: we got a kitten this weekend!

    revel because she is tiny and cute and playful and not terribly destructive (uses litter box like a pro, is content to entertain herself or nap for long stretches of time) and likes to snuggle

    rant because she gets into crazy situations like climbing the bookshelf and because our 12 year old cat doesn’t seem to like her yet. we are going to keep going with a very slow introduction (lots of supervised sniffing through a baby gate) and hope that the growling and hissing taper off. Luckily, the rescue we got her from is very willing to give us suggestions and will take the kitten back if we can’t make it work.

    • Yay for new kittens! The growling and hissing will taper off but it might take two weeks. So just be patient. I know it seems like a long time but cats are somewhat finicky and creatures of routine and they take a long time to get adjusted to new things.

      My two were littermates and have never been apart. I took one to the vet for an hour (when she was seven years old) and when we came home it was as though the two had never met. Took four full days for the low growing and stand-offs to stop.

    • If you’re possibly going to take the kitten back don’t wait for it to grow. The older a cat gets is the less likely it can get adopted. Do the right thing!

    • A lot of rescues will adopt kittens out only in pairs, or only if there is another young cat at home.

      I hope your situation works out… but as Jack5 says, a kitten becomes less adoptable as it gets older.

      • thanks, all. We definitely want to strike the right balance between giving our existing cat time to adapt and not leaving the kitten in limbo. If things don’t work out we will do our best to publicize her so she finds a good home. She would be going back to a foster home with a rescue organization, not a shelter. The kitten that has special needs that could leave her a bit vulnerable to being picked on by another kitten, so the rescue was ok with us taking her even though our first cat is older.

    • Don’t worry yet! A few days is hardly time for anyone to get adjusted. I recently got 2 kittens and have a 15+ original cat. 1 week of old cat just hiding out. 1 week of old cat occasionally sniffing at the gate. 1 week of everyone on free-range and old cat hissing at every sighting. But by week 4 everyone is getting along. A special “chase” toy – in this case a feather wand – also helped bring them both together for play.

      That said, I did have a friend who got a kitten for an old cat’s company and the kitten was relentlessly annoying to OC and had to be given back. Don’t feel bad if this happens. But definitely give it more time.

  • Emilie504

    Rant: Feel blah today. I wish it were still socially acceptable to take to my bed with the vapors for a few years.

    Rave: Emailing with my grandpa about Downton Abbey.

  • Revel – brother and I were both amused by the NYTimes Creating Hipsturbia column…

    ““bears tattoos with his sons’ names, Denim and Bowie, on his
    forearms.”

    When we checked towns out,” Ms. Miziolek recalled, “I saw some
    moms out in Hastings with their kids with tattoos. A little glimmer of
    Williamsburg!”

    Didn’t Brooklyn (Williamsburg, Fort Greene, Dumbo) really heat up when SoHo, The Village et al. got too expensive? Does / Will DC have a Hiptsurbia?

    • Uhhh, we do. It’s called H Street and it is nearing it’s end with introduction of more and more chain stores.

      • Uhhh, that’s in DC proper and not suburbia.

        Hyatsville is trying to become hipsturbia, not sure if it has succeeded though.

        • nah, thats still inside the beltway. it’s mostly continuous growth thats planned between dc and hyattsville.
          our hipsturbia or whatever is Frederick.

          • Frederick? Really? Don’t hang out there but my buddy calls it Fredneck b/c of all the hicks, not hipsters.

          • yes, i mean frederick. it’s a very cool town these days.
            take a day trip up there sometime. awesome place to eat. cute little downtown area to walk around, with fun stores. and yes, hipsters.
            it’s a pretty old industrial town.

          • Emilie504

            Yep, Fredrick. God I love Fredrick, but that doesn’t make me a hipster!

    • I think there will be one–a lot of the folks with little kids in the city right now will decide that the schools aren’t working for them (or won’t be able to get into the charter schools they want). My guess is Mt. Ranier, Greenbelt, Del Ray, Shirlington, and Takoma Park, with some folks winding up in the not-very-hipsterish parts of Northern Virginia and Montgomery County

      • costs in those places exceed most areas of dc.

      • I have to admit I pondered this same question after reading that article…my only quibble with your list is Del Ray, that’s already a pretty pricey enclave. I hope there are more options out there (relatively reasonable real estate, potential for some alternative transportation – even well-organized car pools!) because god forbid I live somewhere un-hip.

        • We were thinking Hipsturbia = Hyattsville / Mt Rainier for affordability and convenience, (sandwiched between UMD and DC proper.) It does not necessarily solve school problem. Though DeMatha and Community Friends School are along Route 1 (RI Ave)

      • After I read this piece, I realized I probably wouldn’t mind living in a hipsturbia-type small town with walkable streets and cute restaurants/shops but lower housing costs. My dealbreaker is always the commute issue, though. I did an extreme commute for a while, and I hit a wall with the exhaustion and the time-suck (and I wasn’t even dealing with auto traffic since it was a MARC commute). Unless I have a job in the future where I can do a majority of days via telework, Frederick and its ilk just aren’t worth the tradeoff. (Not to mention, I have some vision issues that make night-driving a bit of a challenge, so I appreciate public transit even more.)

    • Isn’t takoma park all crunchy and granola?

      • Used to be. We did two years there (08-10) and the people were the rudest I’ve encountered in the area. Was introduced to someone once and when she figured out which house we lived in, she said “Ohhhh, you’re the RENTERS.”

    • Link for the NYT “hipsturbia” article:
      http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/17/fashion/creating-hipsturbia-in-the-suburbs-of-new-york.html

      The premise is that hipsters in their 30s are finding Brooklyn to be too expensive and/or incompatible with having kids, and are thus moving out to suburbs that already have hipster accoutrements.

  • RANT: WMATA, specifically they inane policies. The Red Line train that pulls into Chinatown/Gallery Place dumped off a ton of people this morning but then shut the doors before anyone could get on the train. A huge amount of people were stuck on the track.

    Also, would it kill them to stop the 6 car train in the middle of the track, so as to avoid the surge of people that totally block up one end of the platform?

    Simple changes that cost no money would make the system run sooooooooo much better.

    • “Also, would it kill them to stop the 6 car train in the middle of the track”

      Interesting choice of words. The reason they now stop at the front of the paltform is because of the redline crash. the idea is to give train operators as much room as possible to stop if for some reason there is already a train at the station so that no one is killed.

      Now why they haven’t fixed the automated driving system yet, I don’t know.

      • I don’t think that’s quite right. The trains are currently manually operated and that’s because of the red line crash. But the trains are pulling up to the front of the platform because some operators forgot how long their train was and stopped too soon which meant the rear cars were still in the tunnel when doors opened. (this only became an issue when the trains were switched to manual operation.)

      • I’m surprised that they don’t have end-car or mid-train conductors who check out the crowds and give the all-clear signal to driver, like NYC subways.

        Chinatown/Gallery Place is a total mess. Something needs to be done about the crowd choke points. When the platform gets full it’s really scary and pandemonium.

        • Or at the very least (if WMATA can’t spend the extra money on mid/end-car conductors for every train, which I think even a couple of the lines in NYC are moving away from for the sake of cost savings), an employee stationed on the platform during peak times to give the all-clear to the conductor. Perhaps WMATA does this already, but I’ve never seen it. Even with the motorman + conductor trains, NYC Transit often posts an additional person on the platform as a backup to the conductor when conditions warrant (for example, in stations where the conductor’s view is slightly obstructed due to extreme crowding or the curve of the platform).

    • I would argue that passengers are *at least* as much to blame for those situations as WMATA.

      • No way. One of the exits at Gallery Place is closed for the Red Line, so everyone MUST exit at the area where folks come up to transfer between the Yellow/Green to the Red. Since the train pulls all the way into the station, it creates a MASSIVE chokepoint – all the people exiting the train run straight into all the people trying to get in on the Red Line.

        That part of the station get full to the point where people can, literally, be accidentally pushed onto the tracks by the surging crowd.

        • Generally speaking, yes way. You’re talking about a specific problem that I haven’t actually witnessed. The ones I have witnessed would be easily remedied by passengers stepping lively off (and on) the train and simply spreading out along the platform so as to use all cars. As long as folks don’t feel like doing that then these problems will persist.

        • Which Gallery Place exit is closed? I thought it was only one of the escalators that was closed, forcing the other one to be stopped for two-way traffic.

    • It’s the union’s fault.

  • rant: why is it so hard to write a cover letter? i am so bad at “selling” myself!
    rant: same goes for the resume. any one know of a good and reasonably priced resume writing service?
    rave: my pup will be featured on animal fix later!

  • Rant: someone stole my Trader Joe’s Mediterranean Hummus from the fridge at work. arggghhh half of it left so delicious

  • Rant: Sad breakup.
    Rave: I love my dog so much.
    Rave: Finally movement at corner of Shepherd and Georgia after that building sold last July! Looking forward to see what comes of it.

  • rave: moving. i love having a chance to organize/donate/throw away things i’ve accumulated since the last time i moved.

    rave/rant: moving out of dc back to va. there is so much i will miss about dc but i’m really looking forward to living with my bf.

    rant: even with an extra day off, i woke up on the wrong side of the bed. i’m ready for a tough workout tonight to get me out of this funk.

  • Revel: “Borrowed” co-worker’s Trader Joe’s Mediterranean Hummus. Delish :)

  • Rant: Cell phone died last night.

    Rave: I’m kind of enjoying not having a cell phone for a day or two.

  • New Rave – Stock Market @ 14,000+!!!! In my office word is many ‘senior management types’ put of retirement after market tanked. Hopefully they have recouped 401k losses and can sail off into an enjoyable retirement opening up some new opportunities.

    RANT – DCmud real esstate blog is dormant

  • Revel: Bibliophile. My best friend said “This is my favorite kind of claustrophobia” when perusing an eastern market used book store, much like the photograph for today’s rant/rave.

  • Rant: Why do some passengers pull the “stop requested” cord on the D2 bus when it gets to Dupont Circle? We’re ALL getting off there, morons. All this bus does is make a loop from Glover Park to the Dupont metro. Get a clue. I say this b/c I take this bus at 7 a.m. and it’s before I get my coffee. Stop it.

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