Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user wolfkann

You can talk about whatever is on your mind โ€“ 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 peopleโ€™s grammar. This is a place to vent and/or celebrate things about daily life in DC.

105 Comment

  • Rant: Diwali falling on such a cold night (you have to keep all your windows open so the goddess Lakshmi can come in). I am still chilled!

  • Revel: the bf and I took a 10 day road trip to two weddings. Both weddings were wonderful, very beautiful, meaningful, and fun. The road trip was good too.
    Rant: I came home to sad apartment. My roommate moved out, half my stuff is in boxes, and I still have one more bed bug treatment. Two of the sealed plastic bags with pillows are moldy. Ugh, I guess I closed the bags too soon and there was condensation that molded.
    Rant: All I did yesterday was sit in a car, how am I so tired??
    Revel: I am very close to having a closing date on the new place, so at least there is something to look forward to in all of the mess.

  • Rave: The luxury of comparing Turkish pistachios to Iranian pistachios….! Thanks to saf’s suggestion, I made a trek out to Yekta market. They had several kinds of pistachios AND apricot paste! My weekend was a major yumfest!

    • So what’s the verdict? Turkish versus Iranian?

    • Yekta rules! It is my go-to place for pomegranate paste, French feta, black tea and barbari bread!

      • The bread looked wonderful! Unfortunately I’ve made a vow to curb my carbs…. Which is why the apricot paste is still unopened. ๐Ÿ™

      • Rant: You guys raving about an amazing-sounding place that takes over an hour to get to (from where I live in Capitol Hill, anyway).

        • Haha, +1000. My reaction was “that place sounds great, but having to go to ROCKVILLE makes it very unlikely I will ever get there.”

        • You have to gird you loins, shore up your patience and dive in early. If/when I go, I do a hard-target Rockville Pike food run, including Penzey’s and the Kielbasa Factory — then get the heck out.

        • One of the thing that drives me batty about DC folks is the prideful unwillinglyness to go to places in our region. It’s crazy provincial.

          Our city is tiny. Our region is huge.
          Get out more.

          • Because spending 2 hours traveling to get pistachios is a good use of time?

          • I’m not convinced that it’s a provincialism issue. For me, the issue is convenience and necessity. DC has just about everything I want, so I rarely *need* to visit the ‘burbs. And many of the suburbs, and Rockville in particular, are so spread out that it’s not like you can just metro up there and walk around to everything. If I need a Zipcar to make a visit happen, it will not be happening regularly.

          • @blahblahblah Exactly. There’s a huge difference between rarely leaving a major city and rarely leaving a small town.

          • Heck, these days I rarely even leave my own neighborhood because everything I need is within walking distance. Yesterday I thought about going to Georgetown just for a change of scenery, but the trains weren’t running in that direction and it seemed like way too much of a hassle with the shuttles.

            Plus I’m still scarred from living in Northern Virginia and having to drive everywhere. I definitely put in my time on the road and on public transit when I lived there.

          • To Anonymous @ 11:40 — I would be willing to argue that spending 2 hours (although it took me less than one) to get TURKISH pistachios is worth the effort. My other choices were a. going to NYC, to get them from a known source; b. ordering online — and waiting….. and c. Venturing to Turkey — to find out what they taste like when they’re Really Fresh. Since I actually considered all of these possibilities, it put my Red LIne trek in perspective! ๐Ÿ™‚

          • I would argue that there’s so much to do in DC proper that it’s hard to justify trekking out to the suburbs for a shopping excursion. Given the choice between spending half a day looking at great artwork, or half a day sitting on the metro and buying groceries (even at a cool ethnic grocery) I’ll almost always go for the artwork.

          • @Anonymous 11:23 am: I’m guessing you have a car. Which, good for you, but a main reason why people don’t want to leave the city (especially to a non-metro-accessible Rockville location) is because they’d have to spend a boatload on a rental to get there, or take the metro all the way out there, then hop on a couple of buses to get further out into Rockville, which is not the most efficient or non-frustrating use of time.

          • gotryit

            L, you don’t always have to spend a boatload on a car. Keep an eye out for weekend specials from car rental places. When I didn’t have a car, I’d rent one for cheap on those weekends (<$15 per day for a regular car) and run all the car-helpful errands.

        • Um, should I also mention that the grocery store is attached to a restaurant? Like you can eat, and shop, and eat some more, and shop some more…. The grocery also seems to have take out. So, once a quarter, make your “venture out to Rockville Pike” list. Get on the Red line or grab a car and Just Do It.

          • I recall there being similar middle eastern grocery/restaurants near the Vienna metro that are pretty good (and a lot easier for many of us to get to).

      • Oh sweet, that’s near my office!

    • Did you know that a former president of Iran and current richest Iranian (Rafsanjani) owes his fortune to the family pistachio empire?

      • Oooh, it would be awesome if someone posted a week of pistachio trivia like Emilie did with the rhino trivia… anyone up for the challenge?

      • Emmaleigh504

        That’s interesting! Filing away to amaze my coworkers with my encyclopedic knowledge ๐Ÿ™‚

    • saf

      Oh, I am glad you liked it! It really is a cool store.

  • justinbc

    Rave: The weather this weekend. Another perfect example of why fall is my favorite season in DC. All of my Japanese maples were looking extra brilliant in color, really showing off the reason why I got them. Crisp, clean feeling air and plenty of sunlight, loved every minute of it.

  • Rant: RIP DC Blues legend Bobby Parker.

  • Rave: thanks to POPville for adding in cross streets to the address in the update about Dunya!
    Rave: got thanked with a loud thank you and a HUGE smile from a driver this morning for stopping at a stop sign. at least some drivers recognize that some of us cyclists play by the rules!
    Rant: listened to the weather people on the radio this AM talking about how cold it was and WAY overdressed for my ride this am. i was sweltering by the time i got to work.

  • Rant: Lost my phone in the woods of Warrenton this weekend. I’d turned the sound down because I was in a meeting so any alarms I could set off wouldn’t be heard.
    Rant: Have to buy a new phone – having to choose a new phone. I liked the one I had (Samsung Nexus S) but probably wouldn’t get the same

  • gotryit

    Rave: The first batch of radiators came back from blasting / powder coating and they look great.
    Rant: The second batch is coming later this week, so I’m still on temporary heating.

  • KSB

    Rant: Appeal of traffic violation was denied, despite the fact that the original charge of red light violation was disproven. Letter came back stating that we had stopped in the crosswalk and were therefore liable for the ticket. Um, WHAT? Nowhere on the original citation was any reference to a crosswalk, and the charge is bogus because the video shows us proceeding to make a right turn after coming to a full stop. It’s necessary to enter the crosswalk to legally turn! My head is going to explode…

    • Not snarking, just curious –
      Isn’t there usualy a stop line otuside the cross walk? In any case, aren’t cars required to stop for a red light outside the crowwswalk? Or are you saying you stopped outside the crosswalk and then they gave you a ticket for pulling through the crowsswalk to make your turn? Thanks

      • KSB

        I truthfully don’t know but I suspect we were stopped in the cross walk (not all the way, it was one of those huge ones at FL Ave/NY Ave intersection) – the ticket was from last November and the first photo shows us stopped with part of the car in the cross walk and the second photo (13.8 seconds later, thanks to the traffic cam time stamps) shows our car turning so I wouldn’t be surprised if we were, in fact, stopped partly in the crosswalk. And if the original citation was for that infraction, we’d have been busted. But to deny the original appeal based on something we weren’t originally cited for drives me batty!

    • I got that same citation at that exact intersection once. I paid the ticket because I knew DC would never admit to screwing me in the first place. My advice would be to go contest it in person. I’ve heard of people having better luck when they can speak to a person.

      Rave: The complete and total farce that is the DC street cleaning/alternate side parking scam is done for the winter! No more watching the ticket stooges generate ill-gotten revenue for our criminal DC council to squander while trash piles up week after week.

  • Rave: After another commenter raved about him the other week, and I caught his bus again this morning, it jogged my memory to finally submit an online commendation comment to WMATA about Terry, one of the bus operators on the 43. That guy really goes above and beyond, and his energy and positive spirit always help remind me that I should snap out of my groggy, early-morning funk (I am *not* a morning person) and resolve to tackle the day with a positive attitude. While this doesn’t excuse egregious examples of driver rudeness (which I actually hardly ever encounter, but I hear stories from other riders), I sympathize that driving a bus can’t be the easiest or most pleasant job in the world–and yet it is a really important job–so it makes me appreciate it that much to see someone who’s so dedicated and relentlessly positive on the job. I really hope that WMATA management actually reads the online comments and that Terry can get some well-deserved recognition!

  • Rave: DC Tweed ride yesterday… weather was so perfect and there were 600 enthusiastic participants.
    Rave: After party at The Brixton was awesome way to cap the weekend. Dandy Wellington and his band killed it.

  • Rave: weekend guests! It was fun to catch up.
    Rant: weekend guests who won’t plan ahead and decide on the fly to replace good plans with mediocre ones. No, grabbing a bite at the mall is not an acceptable replacement for brunch at Coco Sala.
    Rant: the cold. I am so not a winter person.
    Rave: it’s totally manageable when all bundled up in the right coat, boots, gloves, etc.

    • Forgotten rant: Only finding out that Bourbon coffee had been offering growlers of iced coffee when they have stopped doing it for the season. Whyyyyyyyyyyyy did I miss this until it was too late?

  • Rave: End of the rowing season — no more 4:30 AM alams until next April.
    Rant: Got up at 5Am anyway to do work.
    Rave: Kitty decided to be friendly.
    Rant: She decided to be friendly by curling up on the edge of my keyboard while I was trying to work at 5AM.

  • skj84

    Rave: Had a great time at thw tweed ride yesterday. Beautiful weather for a bike ride, everyone looked fantastic, and the after party was loads of fun. It was great way to spend a Sunday!

    Rant: Completely miserable at work. I know my situation is not unique, but I’m almost at the point where I’m just ready to quit.

  • Any recommendations on a good furniture refinisher in the District?

  • pablo .raw

    Rave: The Conjuring. I wish I would enjoy that kind of movies more if I was a believer, but it was still interesting. Or maybe I didn’t get too scared because I didn’t watch it alone? and we had ice cream after.
    Rant: I’m starting to find out which files I’ve lost on the external hard drive that stopped working :/

  • epric002

    rave/rant: took both dogs for a run by myself on sunday.
    rave: they were *mostly* very good, and no one decided to trip me.
    rave: 2 dogs pull even more than 1- we ran very fast ๐Ÿ™‚
    rant: i’m feeling it today.
    rave: am loving my outfit today, and have already received 2 compliments ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Rave: this weather

    Rant: My mother’s birthday is coming up and I have no idea what to get her. We haven’t spoken in years, but I participate in the gift giving charade because it makes it all easier on my siblings. I used to have to be the one of my sibs to get the gift ideas, but since she and I don’t speak, I really have no idea what she’d need/want/use. How do you buy something for someone you don’t know? My sibs have been no help.

    • I really hate how people default to “gift card”, when a little thought and care is called for. Your case, though, is one of the few where a gift card would actually be appropriate: someone you don’t know well/ don’t care for, but still have to get something for. A gift card always says to me “I didn’t want to put any thought into this problem so I just threw money at it”.

      • To be fair, there are times when a gift card represents the thoughtful gift.
        At some point your siblings have to step up and come up with an idea, and if they won’t or can’t, then maybe going through the charade does not actually matter to them and you can put an end to it?

      • epric002

        i love getting gift cards- i don’t find them careless at all.

      • I totally disagree about the gift cards — although I do understand where you’re coming from. In my family of picky people,giving gift cards are a way to encourage someone to buy exactly what they want — and to have the fun of shopping for a possibly extravagant purchase. (Saks and Tiffany’s cards are pretty high up on my list of nice things to find in my stocking!)

        • For those of us who loathe shopping, receiving a gift card is like being assigned an really obnoxious errand. If you knew me at all, you’d know that the best gift is NOT having to go shopping.

    • What about some of those Mrs. Field’s cookies trays? My family (mom, aunts) all love cookies/sweets in general…

      • Too risky for someone you don’t know, given that the majority of people these days are gluten-free, anti-carb, paleo, vegan, or just don’t like good food.

    • Perhaps if you haven’t spoken in years, a get-to-know-me over the last __ years photobook? That is, if you think that she’s interested in you on any level. If not, sorry – that sounds not fun.

    • Is there something kind of nostalgic that you could get her? In my family, that would something like Velatis candy — which we always got for special occasions when I was a kid. Or something handmade (lots of thought and effort) but also potentially re-giftable (knitted hat or scarf, homemade candy or baked goods). I’m thinking things that take thought and effort — but aren’t about knowing exactly what your mother would like.

      • I suspect when you haven’t spoken to your mother for years, time and effort are not the features you’re looking for in a gift.

        • Actually, if I hadn’t spoken with my mother in years, it would have to be for such a good reason that I, personally, would forego the gift thing altogether. On the other hand, throwing the question out to Popville suggests — at least, to me — that the OP wants a gift that at least looks like it took some thought and maybe a few positive feelings as well. Note, Anonymous 12:38 — I said “Thought and effort” — not time. Picking up a box of candy or knitting a hat while I’m on the train, or doubling a batch of gingerbread don’t take a lot of time — but does suggest caring enough to make an effort. They’re also not expensive.

    • If she lives in the suburbs and/or has access to transportation, another idea is a gift card to a nearby mall. I know a number of malls sell mall-wide gift cards, and that accommodates a wide spectrum of goods (clothes, housewares, shoes, jewelry, makeup, etc. etc.) as well as tastes, from high-end to no-frills.

    • Thanks guys. These are all good ideas! I don’t mind doing thought/time/whatever for the gift, so I’ll have to think about some of them.

  • Are we sure this actually happened on the MBT? The police report makes it sound like it was on Rhode Island near the MBT, not actually on it.

  • Rant: Appointment lady at my ortho’s office. I was in on Friday, the doctor and I discussed the possibility of surgery, and I decided to go for it after doing research over the weekend and coming up with a list of questions. I called this morning to make an appointment to go over my questions and the appointment lady had such an attitude. “You were just in on Friday – you want to come in again? Do you just want to talk to him on the phone?” Um, sorry, but YES I want to talk to him IN PERSON before I decide whether to have my spine cut open. Her attitude just rubbed me the wrong way, like she is his personal gatekeeper and I’m being pushy by wanting to come in for another appointment.
    Rave: love the cooler weather, and yesterday was absolutely beautiful!
    Rave: four-day weekend coming up!

    • That is absolutely worth telling the doctor or office manager.

    • Emmaleigh504

      That’s terrible! When I had my relatively minor surgery the surgeon and his scheduler were so helpful and nice and ready to talk to me any time I wanted. Sadly, not a spine surgeon, so he can’t help you out. Hope things get better for you.

    • Have you thought of getting a Neuro consult? As someone with a family full of spinal issues, I highly recommend a neurosurgeon over ortho any day. Whenever the nervous system (spinal column) is involved I want Neuro! Not trying to step on toes here, I understand its a very personal decision. If you are interested, Dr Caputy, chief of Neuro at GW did my back surgery last year and I would highly, highly, highly recommend! Whatever you decide…good luck!!!!!

      • I think I’m going to bring it up with the doctor when I go in for my next appointment. He’s the head of the spine surgery department at his hospital (affiliated with one of the major universities in DC) so I feel pretty confident in his abilities. I don’t want to come right out and name the facility, but most of the online reviews of it mention how horrible the admin/desk staff are, which is unfortunate since the doctors are good and some of the staff is really nice.
        I did see a neurosurgeon the first time I herniated a disc, with a doctor in Pittsburgh, and he was so dismissive of my pain that it kind of soured me on neuro in general. I came across a lot of that because I first started having problems when I was only 20, so the doctors seemed to think I was just shopping for pain meds. Now that I’m in my 30’s, they take me more seriously (sad to say).

    • saf

      Oh, my ortho has an assistant like that. I HATE talking to her. And he thinks she walks on water, so complaining does not good. Were he not such an amazing surgeon, I would change docs over her. I left a PCP because of his horrid office folks. I wish I could do that here.

  • Rant: My first cold of the year dampened my weekend plans.
    Rave: Saw “12 Years a Slave” on Sunday and really enjoyed it.
    Revel: Big Freedia tonight at the Howard!

  • So, I’m looking to pass on a cat to a good home – any suggestions other than craigslist or WHS? Cat is roughly 7-10 years old, all black, and friendly like a dog. Backstory is that we used to have 3 cats, and all was fine. One got away, we had a kid, and the remianing two cats have been fighting for the better part of a year now – real blood drawing, hair tearing fights. Black cat is great with other people, our son, and was fine with other cats. He’s obviously not happy, and we aren’t happy. Have tried seperating them, cat pheramones, behavior specialist, etc.

    • Don’t do Craigslist. There are crazies out there; who knows what they’ll do to the cat. WHS is good. Or WARL. See if the cat can get in a foster home while waiting to be adopted. Older cats are harder to adopt out.

      • I imagine you could ask any of the local rescue groups to post him on Petfinder.com for you while you continue to care for him until adoption. Especially if you write him up with the same good description – friendly like a dog and good with kids is attractive to many.

  • Rave: passed the bar. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Rant: Had so much trouble sleeping last night that I had to take the day off of work because I’m too fuzzy to think straight.

  • I have never done this before but for some reason I think about this too much and it really bothers me…

    RANT: New DC street signs change from all CAPS to starting with a capital and then all lowercase. I know this happened a while ago, but more and more are changing over and its ugly!

    • I think it’s the font choice that’s ugly more than the upper-lower case mix.
      Google it and you’ll find lots and lots of screeds against the new signs, maybe it will help to know you’re not alone!!

    • epric002

      street signs in mixed letters are easier to read- the eye looks for the shape of letters, and that’s hard to do with all caps. (i wrote a paper in grad school on the semiotics of road signs :D)

  • Rant: Bone disease is getting worse. I’m relishing walking everywhere I can, but a car may turn into a necessity ๐Ÿ™

    Rave: DC looks so beautiful in the fall. The colors are gorgeous.

    • Your rant sounds painfully challenging. I’m glad that you’re relishing — and wish you luck, strength, and a lot more relishing!

  • Rave: Horrible company just awarded a contract to run group home named Life Deeds. Rant: they are going to be running it out of the 1300 block of Taylor st Nw right behind Powell Elementary. Muriel Bowser is ok with juvenile delinquents being loosely monitored and housed behind an elementary school and on a street with 2 drug houses and a neighborhood already saturated with social services. Rant: Muriel Bowser should not be allowed to be mayor of this city

  • Rant: Shortly before bed last night I randomly started thinking about college and some of the negative personal interactions I had there. This led to bad dreams involving some of those people. I graduated over ten years ago, so I’m not sure why this still bothers me.
    Rave: The other part of my dream involved trying out for some kind of ice skating roller derby (which sounds terribly dangerous). I rocked the audition and made the team!

  • Rave: Culture Coffee opened on Kennedy street this weekend and I really like it. Especially the ginger chai. And, it’s pretty cheap and a quick walk from my house!

    • jim_ed

      We stopped in saturday morning. The folks were exceptionally friendly and the space is a nice respite on Kennedy St. I picked up a cup of coffee, which paired nicely with my Hungry Man Special from Tony’s Place.

  • Rave (finally!): to the kind gentleman who found my cell phone on saturday and made sure i got it back. Thank you so much! I needed to be reminded that people can be decent.

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