Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

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Photo by PoPville flickr user Rich Renomeron

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.

112 Comment

  • Rant: my friend’s apartment does not have working heat. Management “measured” the floor temp to be low 60s, and the radiator heat to be 72, inches away from the radiator, but the room temps are still super low. I’d appreciate any advocacy resources that I could pass along to him.

    Rave: Snow!

    • Buy a few electric powered/oil filled radiators from Target/Wal-mart, about 24$ each but great at keeping a house safely warmed. send landlord receipts for the heaters and additional electric costs. You may not get reimbursed for electric bills, but then you can set the heat to your standards.

    • Maybe contact the Office of the Tenant Advocate? I thought there was a legal requirement for landlords to provide heat in winter at a minimum of 68 F, and a floor temperature of “low 60s” doesn’t cut it.

      • I agree with textdoc’s suggestion. I actually stopped in to the OTA for help with some security deposit issues and they helped me recover most of my deposit.

    • If management is really not taking action he can tell them he is going to contact DCRA. They can be fined $1000 and up for failing to meet the requirements, but those vary depending on who has access to the heat controls-
      http://dcra.dc.gov/service/district-columbia-heating-regulations

      This happened to me in my last place. They had installed an electric baseboard heater that wasn’t powerful enough for my bedroom size, which also had 2 exterior walls and windows. My management gave me an electric oil heater, but that’s not sustainable since you can’t run it while you’re away. Luckily for me, badgering got the management to cave and install a new baseboard heater, which was better but still not appropriate for the size of the room, worked. At least a bit. Good luck, I know how terrible it is.

    • Thank you all for the tips :)

  • This forum is becoming more negative everyday. Not sure if its the holidays or what, but it hasn’t been very interesting or supportive on here lately. I would like to see a day that is dedicated to Raves only!!!!!

    • Rave: I am employed! I made it to work safely! Today is Friday! I have a wonderful family, set of friends, and boyfriend! But see now I just feel like I am bragging. There is no winning.

    • The holidays are a stressful and intense time for a lot of people. It’s not surprising that people would want to come here and vent.

    • squish

      I agree with you. I’ve been commenting very infrequently due to the negativity on here lately.

      Rave: Snow!
      Bigger Rave: Wedding plan are coming along, and I’m not nearly as stressed as I was a few months ago. I am a little concerned we’ll have crappy weather in March, but whatever! We’re still getting hitched!
      Biggest Rave: my younger sister (couple years ago, wedding disaster, abusive husband, falling out) left her husband a few days before Christmas, came home, finally saw how abusive he was and how manipulative he is, and is in the process of divorcing him. HAPPY HAPPY NEW YEAR!

    • There is a reason it is called “RANDOM RANT AND/OR RAVE”.

      • It’s fine to rant, especially if you are looking for support. But people get attacked for their raves all of the time. Just tired of people jumping down each others throats. It’s causing me to frequent this forum less and less. Others as well. So there you have it, that is my random rant!

        • Yeah, I hear that. It’s not the rants that are the problem, it’s the negativity that bothers me. I have to admit that I even stopped reading when I saw that people were jumping all over someone for saying that they felt blessed. I guess you could see it as a very DC way of keeping you on your toes, but it is a bit much sometimes.

          • See, this is my rant. I hate the tendency of posters to blame things they don’t like as “DC.” I see this as the biggest negative attitude on popville. Some people are jerks. There are jerks in NY, Iowa, everywhere. The internet is filled with people being jerks. Why is there always someone who wants to bash all of DC for a negative internet comment or a bad date with a dude?

          • Oy vey, this is just the nitpicking I’m referring to! You can’t say anything on here without someone freaking out. I’m not bashing DC, I’m just saying that it’s a place that attracts a lot of smart people who like to argue. As I said, it’s “KEEPING YOU ON YOUR TOES.”

          • I’m not freaking out. You brought up the negative attitudes that you hate and I agreed. I just specifically hate all of the “DC people are so rude” “Dating in this town sucks” “DC people are all this or that.” I’m not trying to argue or keep you on your toes. Also, the caps lock is an awesome way to illustrate the whole jumping down someone’s throat sucks theory.

          • I used all caps because I want to emphasize what I said, but there’s not a function to bold text. Go back and read what I said; I didn’t say I hated anything. I said, “it is a bit much sometimes.” I didn’t say anything about hating DC, or that everyone in DC is this way. I was making a specific statement about something I’ve noticed in the comments on a message board. You chose to extrapolate that into me bashing all of DC when I did no such thing. I’ll end with a rave: thank god it’s freaking friday.

        • I replied to your previous comment before seeing this one and, to say again, I totally agree! I don’t mind reading rants (or, if I’m already in a bad mood, I just skip them that day). And, in some ways reading others rants has helped me feel better/less alone in some of the issues I’ve been having lately, so I like rants in that way. But, what is with some people’s bizarre need to criticize others’ innocuous comments? It makes no sense!

    • Rave: It’s been almost a year, and the sex just keeps getting better! And slow work during the holidays means long slow mornings together for holiday stress release.

    • Rant: I agree with your sense that the negativity in this forum is increasing. Sometimes I feel like dealing with it — and sometimes I don’t, so I’ve been lying low lately. I think it’s great to rant, and I think it’s great to be opinionated — but I don’t need more snarkiness , sniping, or anonymous petty nastiness. I realize that this is the internet, and that my version of “nastiness” may be someone else’s “cogent comment”. So I figure it’s up to me to hang when I’m up for it, and back off a bit when I’m not.
      Rave: Quality time with friends. I feel blessed to have a small circle of friends — who have become my family. And a larger circle of acquaintances — who have become my friends.
      Rave: Being “auntie” to a couple of dogs. Unconditional love and playfulness — even in small doses — is pretty wonderful.
      Rave: New shoes, new makeup, and new commitments for the new year. Lush and Zappos have added nicely to the quality of my life. :-)

    • I’ve noticed the same and I’m hoping people are just stressed over the holidays. And I actually don’t mind rants; it’s more the overly critical reactions that bug me. Here’s to hoping my fellow Popvillians (and I) have a lot more to rave about and/or a better ability to sympathize with one another in the upcoming months!

  • Rant: I left my car at work last night and metroed home to avoid the slippery conditions last night and this morning. I prided myself on being safe and efficient….until my 65 minute commute took an hour and 40 minutes this morning.
    Rant: my boss works from home every Friday, but even though I filled out my paperwork to work from home and got it approved he stalled the process for me last year.
    Rant: I need to get better at dropping the bitterness and moving on.
    Rave: it’s Friday and I’m looking forward to my plans tonight.

  • Rant: People driving on the roads with only their windshield uncovered. Seriously dangerous if you can’t see out your side windows.

    Rave: Everyone chickened out with the weather and driving in was a relative breeze.

    • Driving to work up 295 this morning, there was a dude who didn’t even bother clearing off his rear windshield. WTF.

  • Rant: Spent 45 minutes trying to shovel the ice-snow off my sidewalk, and off the sidewalk of my elderly neighbors next door, and also off my car so my girlfriend could use it to get to work.
    Rave: My girlfriend was very appreciative.

  • Rave: I parked in the alley behind where I work, then I urinated in that same alley.

  • Rave: Snow! Snow makes me so happy. While it was very cold and icy this morning, at least I get to enjoy the snow for a while before it turns into a wet slushy mess. I didn’t have the time last night, but tonight I am going to go into full winter wonderland mode and curl up with my knitting and a hot toddy while cookies are baking in the oven.

  • Rave: Fleece tights! Wore them underneath my nice pants – very toasty.

    Rave: Boss out of the office until Tuesday!

    Rant (stuck in the middle): ZERO motivation. Hopefully it makes an appearance next week…

    Rave: Was able to spend NYE in the company of my favorite people. Love my friends!

  • gotryit

    Rave: snow!
    Rant: shoveling / icy / had to break out the bag of salt for ~80 feet of sidewalk… the downside of a corner lot.
    Rave: no more of these holidays for another 10 months!

    • Rave: corner lot with southeastern exposure! The half inch of ice under the dusting of snow had me digging out the salt and ice breaker until I went outside and kicked at it and it was already breaking up. Should be gone in an hour with this strong sun.

  • Rave: love living next to Meridian Hill Park in times like last night/this morning
    Rave: I get to telework today so I can stare out my window at the park and don’t have to deal with the bitter wind outside.
    Rant: thankfully nothing to rant about!

  • Random question: why was there much more snow around Mt. Pleasant than downtown (K St. area) this morning? At first I thought maybe the city and the downtown BIDs were just super-thorough about clearing snow on the sidewalks, but then I realized there’s not even any snow in the trees. Is it the difference in elevation?

    • It could be the elevation, proximity to water for the downtown (inland areas in the mid-Atlantic get more snow), or just the patterns of the storm (more intense section of clouds dumped snow on Mt. P). Most likely a combination of those three factors.

    • Maybe. In the summer, I notice its generally hotter downtown than when I’m at home in Columbia Heights. And it’s generally windier downtown too. Probably blew off some of the snow.

      • True. It was just kind of weird to put on my rain/snow boots and shuffle across a bunch of snow and ice this morning…only to get off the bus 15 minutes later and it’s practically bone dry! :)

      • I lived in Mt. P for 6 years. I think it’s so funny that it was originally built (1700s I think) to be a ‘suburb’ of downtown DC. The Mt. Pleasant burbs!!!

    • We had a ton of snow in Cleveland Park too.

    • I’m not sure it’s what’s happening here, but there can be a heat island effect in urban areas, where heat radiates from the ground due to more asphalt, car exhaust, underground utilities, certain types of roofing, etc. It could be that the air downtown is actually a few degrees warmer than in Mt. Pleasant.

  • Rant: I’ve given 5 wedding gifts in the past six months, but have only received two thank you notes. Is it that hard?
    Rave: Had a fun chat with my neighbors on New Years – so happy to have cool neighbors!
    Rant: Neighbors are moving later this spring. :( Sometimes I hate that this city is so transient. I feel like I need to replenish my friend supply every few years.

    • You have up to a year to give the bride/groom a wedding present and they should send you a thank you card no later than one year after the wedding. Thems the rules.

      • Sorry, but no. The couple does not have a year to send thank you notes and even if they did, it doesn’t mean they should take that long. Emily Post says three months:
        .
        http://www.emilypost.com/weddings/wedding-registries-gifts-and-thank-yous/167-wedding-thank-yous
        .
        It really is not hard to sit your ass down and write a few thank you notes a night: Thank you for the blender, Aunt Marge! We love it and have already made some of the best smoothies known to man. We were so happy to have you there to celebrate our wedding with us and we look forward to seeing you at Thanksgiving!

      • I checked – the etiquette gurus all say the wedding present rule is fine, but the card rule that is floating around is not – a thank you should be sent shortly after the gift arrived. Which makes sense.

      • If it’s been a few months you can write/email/call them and make sure they got your gift. If it was given at the wedding the card may have become separated. If it was mailed it could have been taken by a package thief or something.

        This might also be a catalyst for getting a thank you note. But it might not if it’s already taken this long.

  • Rant – I cannot concentrate at work today! There’s only a few of us in the office and I really should get work done so I won’t feel overwhelmed on Monday when everyone is back.
    Rave – fantasizing about going on vacation for my 30th birthday in the spring. I’m thinking about flying to Vegas, renting a car, and road tripping through national parks in Utah (Zion, Bryce Canyon, Arches). Has anyone been to those places before? Any other ideas for an adventurous vacation?

    • I went to Moab with my spouses family and it was awesome. It was a trip I was obligated to go on and something I probabably wouldn’t have chosen for myself but I am so so glad I went. It’s absolutely gorgeous and I loved how much the terrain could change so quickly. We ended up driving through snow-covered mountains in shorts on a whim one day! We flew to Salt Lake and drove out. We also stopped in Park City…I would recommend that too!

    • Excellent idea. Zion is one of the prettiest places I’ve ever been to. It’s a beautiful part of the country to drive around in.

    • I’ve been to Arches and Canyonlands and they are amazing! Spring is a good time to go because it won’t be so hot. Hiking is awesome, everything is so beautiful. Arches is very user friendly for all levels of fitness. One tip is that everyone says to go to Delicate Arch for the sunset, which is great advice because it’s gorgeous. BUT… bring a good flashlight and make sure you get advice from locals on what time to actually go. I went too late and ended up stumbling around in the dark and feared I would die. Went back the next day at the right time and was glad I didn’t keep going because there are some precarious cliffs. Another tip: don’t bother going white water rafting in Moab, it’s a little trickle of water. It was fun but not so fast moving. We had to paddle to keep the boat going. I’ve never been to Bryce and Zion but have heard they are gorgeous too. Bryce is a lot smaller than Zion but looks so pretty from pics I’ve seen. Canyonlands is right next to Arches and cool too, a lot less user friendly but worth checking out for the vast desert scenes and hidden treasures. Both are rumored to be great for mountain biking, but I’ve never done it.

    • You definitely won’t regret it. That part of the country is like another planet. Really amazing. I also second flying into Salt Lake and checking out Park City rather than driving from Vegas.

    • I have been to Bryce and Zion. Zion is the more traditional looking of the two with lots of hiking, rock climbing, etc. Bryce Canyon though is something that even when you are looking at it you feel like it can’t possibly be real – it is just so different from anything I have ever seen before. It is definitely worth checking out.

      I have to say, if you could go later than spring, Bryce Canyon is near Cedar City, which has a surprisingly incredible Shakespeare Festival (Tony Award winning, they recruit actors from NY and LA). http://www.bard.org. When I lived in Arizona, we went up every summer and had a blast. It starts in late June.

    • I’ve been to Bryce and Zion. They’re both fantastic. I went when I was a teen and didn’t really like hiking and nature and STILL thought they were amazing. I’d love to go back as an adult.

      • Thanks for the feedback everyone! I’m now seriously considering Utah for my trip and will probably spend on Trip Advisor looking up itineraries :-)

        • I would go back to Utah in a heartbeat. I did a cross country trip and spent time in Moab, Arches and Canyonlands, American Fork (near SLC), and when coming back across the states into Southern Utah to Zion. Such beautiful places out there. go. and have fun!

    • Emilie504

      Road tripping through that part of the country is super fun. I got to do it in college with my parents. We drove from Louisiana to California. It was amazing. Bryce Canyon was awesome.

    • Zion is one of my favorite places on earth. Hiking the Narrows is a magical experience – I can’t wait to take my husband there. I wasn’t as impressed with Bryce, but that may be because i prefer water.

    • I’ve been to all and they are uniquely amazing. Bryce is easiest to see in general – and it is good to give it a full day to see it in all different lights from dawn to dusk – hallucinatory. Zion is much bigger and really needs some long-hike or backpacking to really appreciate. How about the Grand Canyon? Spring is a great time and a hike to the bottom is an incredible experience, and not really all that hard. If you want to do this, you need to reserve a trail now, or take your chances with what might be available when you get there. Just do anything you can to avoid the Bright Angel or Kaibab trails.

    • Yes, hubby and I did this in Fall 2012. It was great. We had a blast, it’s gorgeous. Highly recommend.

  • epric002

    rantish: most snow we’ve gotten all year/iciest roads, and the fed gov’t is open.
    rave: doing a bit of work from home today.
    rave: spent NYE at my cousin’s wedding and had the best time ever. why don’t more people get married on NYE?
    rave: beautiful snow.
    rave: lentils and kielbasa in the crockpot.

  • Rave: Working from home today.
    Rant: Someone must have mistaken my car for theirs, and tried to clear off the windshield and the back window. Unfortunately, because of the timing (or maybe because the first layer was icy to begin with?), the snow/ice that’s on the windshield is now REALLY hard to get off. Maybe I will have another go at it with the scraper later on.
    Rave: I don’t really need to use my car today anyway.

    • My car had a layer of ice under the snow this morning. I think because when the storm started, the temperatures went from above freezing to below relatively quickly, so the moisture froze and then snow fell on top of it. So, I suspect everyone’s car was like yours, and the person regretfully didn’t finish their erroneous job :)

      • Heh heh. Yeah, after I saw a later comment about a layer of ice underneath the show, I realized that the tough ice probably had nothing to do with the mistaken snow-clearing. :)

  • Rave: garden catalogs!

    • I love getting gardening catalogues – making lists and dreaming of spring! Do you have a favorite catalogue?

      • Do you get the White Flower Farm catalog? That was my ‘garden’ when I lived in an apartment where I couldn’t even have a window box because I didn’t have window ledges. Pretty pictures / garden-lust.

        • I like White Flower – pricey but I’ve found plants not readily available elsewhere. I also like Thompson and Morgan for their wide variety of flowers. And then I end up doing most of my seed ordering from Pinetree – seeds ( including sprouting seeds), books, bulbs and more.

      • I love Territorial Seed, I order most of my seeds from them. I just ordered ghost pepper seeds!!! And I love Gardeners Supply for gardening gear AND they are located in Vermont which is the best state in the union (IMHO).

  • Rave: Decided to be safe and stay home from work today and use unscheduled leave. A full day at home with the puppy :)
    Rant: Verizon Fios was canvassing our neighborhood the past few nights getting people to switch from their current provider. But apparently the “offer rate” (where some fees were waived) was only available if you signed a contract with the people who came to your door. They said the offer wouldn’t be available if I called Verizon and didn’t have any business cards to leave me. I’m 99% sure they were legitimate, since they had Verizon shirts and seemed to know a lot about Fios, but what a strange way to do business.

    • I had some pest control guys come to my door a couple months ago with an offer like that. $99 for spraying outside, roof, and knocking off all the spider webs. Said they had some extra chemical from a house they did around the block. Told them we didn’t have any spider webs and bugs were not an issue, so they knocked it down to $79…then $59…then $39…and finally all the way down to $19. I’m fairly sure they were gypsies from WV that run scams and then rob you when you’re not looking. I guess my point is, that unless you are 7 and selling girl scout cookies, it’s get off my lawn time!

  • Rant: Practically no one at work and I can’t concentrate.
    Rave: Looking forward to an evening of baking, knitting by the fire, and writing thank-you cards for Christmas gifts.

  • skj84

    Rave: Made it to work safely. Despite having a 20 minute walk from my house to the metro at the crack of dawn. I actually overheated walking, had too many layers on.

    Rant: My stomach is killing me. I have tried tums, ginger ale and mild food. I feel like I’m having an acid reflux attack.

    • Maybe yogurt will help?

    • I get acid reflux periodically and, no lie, the absolute best thing in the world for me is Alka-Seltzer. It’s like a wonder drug. I can literally feel the discomfort disappear as I drink it! Might not work for you, but worth a try!

    • if it feels as though it’s more in your throat/esophagus it’s likely reflux and Prilosec works well. If it’s more stomach-y then grab some generic ranitidine or cimetidine and take a couple. It won’t kick in for a bit, but as a chronic sour stomach guy, I’ve tried everything and these work best.

      • skj84

        It felt like heartburn or indigestion. I do have prilosec but it takes a while to kick in. Going to try Alka Seltzer if I starts up again. But I love the pickle idea!

    • Eating 1-2 pickles usually get me sorted out, the vinegar in them does wonders for my stomach. I avoid drugs at all costs, they only make things worse! :)

  • Rave: Cookies and coffee for breakfast. Working from home! :p

  • Rave: Enjoying teleworking from home, with my puppy (who just had a bath and is extra soft).

    Rant: My bone disease is still relapsing. It hasn’t been this bad for 16 years!

  • Rave: It’s Friday!!!
    Rave: Leftover homemade chicken parm from dinner last night. Tastes even better for lunch today!
    Rave: Sun is shinning
    Rave: I have an amazing sister who is so good to me.

  • (Not really a ) Rant: I really want to vacuum, but my cat who’s afraid of it is sleeping soundly in his bed in the living room. He’s so cute and comfy, I can’t bear to disturb the little guy.

  • Rant: People who won’t clean their sidewalks. It’s part of owning property, take some responsibility and get it done. I wish the City would start issuing fines.

    Rave: Snow!

    • Normally I agree, but I tried this morning and it was really difficult. I scraped off a dusting of snow, but most of it seemed to be permanently affixed to the sidewalk. It took every bit of strength I had to get my sidewalk semi-clean, and I’m a healthy 31-year-old.

    • And I wish that people would be neighborly. Not everybody has the physical strength to do this. If you notice that your neighbor — who may have had to leave early to go to work today — hasn’t cleaned his/her sidewalk, ask if there’s any way that you can help. Organize a bunch of teens who need money to offer to clean the walkways. Offer to do it yourself. And maybe have a bit of empathy and a few helpful solutions before you plead for fines. Getting fined won’t make it any easier for an elderly/pregnant/frail/out-of-town neighbor to clean their sidewalks.
      I sympathize with your rant –just not with your solution.

      • I just do my elderly neighbors’ for them without asking. I feel like that’s just common decency.
        Today was tough, though. I was so wiped out from doing my own that I only did a half-assed job on theirs.

    • For what it’s worth, the city gives people 8 hours after the end of a snow/ice storm to clear their sidewalks: http://ddot.dc.gov/DC/DDOT/On+Your+Street/Traffic+Management/Snow/Shovel+Your+Sidewalk

  • Rave: Puerto Rico with Girl from the Internet in February! We have the plane tickets booked but lodging is still up in the air. We’re looking primarily for a nice beach on the quiet side, preferably not as part of a huge resort. Any recommendations, PoPville?

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