Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user James0806

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.

89 Comment

  • Revel: Snow Patrick’s Day!
    Query: What bars are open/having specials today?

  • Rave: I’m tired of winter, but I love working from home, in my pajamas, with my two cats romping around. Plus my house is a lot warmer than my office.

  • Rave: Busy weekend with a lot of time with friends. I had a great time, but I’m a little tired at the beginning of the work week.
    Rant: Snowy Monday. I’m at work. I’m ready for warm weather, spring, and gardening. It will happen soon, right? Right???

  • Rant: Lots of reasons to be sad today. Having trouble not completely breaking down at work. I hope everyone is having a better day than me.

  • Rant: So sick of my agency being one of the only ones who forces people to work when it snows. All my other government friends have gotten at least a whole week off in total this winter. Not to mention we also had to work during the shutdown when everyone else got a free two week vacation. We don’t even get a thank you out of it, just the typical public BS claiming all government workers are lazy. Screw them.

    • I don’t think your agency is the only one. I am also required to work when the government is closed; however, I try to look at it as a positive thing. Not only do I have a job but the telework policy that my agency has in place provides greater work/life flexibility for the entire year.

    • I’ve got a few government friends who never got back pay for the shutdown. So while it may seem like a vacation to us, they didn’t get paid for it. Or at least some didn’t.

      Secondly, I cosign with coming into work on a snow day. Our job only follows the Feds for 2 closings per calendar year and we used up our 2 already. So we had to come into work today and the storm from 2-3 weeks back. Most took unscheduled leave, so it’s not too bad today.

  • Rave/Rant: The city being rather walkable has allowed me to go the entire winter without missing a single day of work due to snow.
    Rant: My wife has missed a bunch of work due to the snow and the city not plowing our neighborhood quick enough.
    Rave: I think she’s finally realizing that working way out in Tysons is a pain and largely to blame for the amount of work that she’s missed this winter time.

  • Rant: Marriage is over. Wife stayed in hotel this weekend, and is looking for apartments. I am literally sick with grief. Feeling like I am going to throw up.

    Rant2: Have to talk to my (30 year marriage) parents about it at some point soon, probably tonight. They have mentioned many times how them being married so long is a positive influence, and makes it so their kids know that marriage is forever. I have never dreaded anything more in my entire life. That one also makes me want to throw up.

    Rave: I get to keep the house… I suppose that is a rave.

    Rant3: She gets all of our liquid savings.

    Rave: Mid twenties guy, good job, nice row house, going to be okay, just an incredibly difficult time.

    Rant4: Trying to figure out how to date again. That will be interesting.

    • I am so sorry. I hope you at least have a snow day or some vacation time to take care of yourself.

      I wouldn’t worry about dating right now, you’ll have a long road ahead of you. Though I can’t speak to the usefulness of the rebound…

      • justinbc

        Agreed, I wouldn’t worry about dating until at least a year (or more) has passed, unless you’re doing it simply for a physical distraction. But you should definitely be up front about that so that future potential partners aren’t led astray.
        Re: parents / long term / etc, I don’t think people view relationships in the same way as the generation before us. The commitment, loyalty, whatever you want to call it just isn’t there. It’s like our generation has relationship ADD or something. We give up too easily, set unrealistic expectations, and all sorts of other traps that keep us from having the long term sustainability from when times were “simpler”.

        • I don’t think it’s that things were simpler. I think that the biggest thing that’s changed is that we’re all more urban than last generation, so we’re constantly bombarded with more people, more options, more chances to make different choices. It’s not a bad thing at all, but I think it changes the way we view commitment.

          • I think what you just described (though I don’t think “urban” is the right word) pretty much means things aren’t as simple. Exposure to fewer people and fewer options, and have fewer chances to make different choices means things are simpler, no?

        • Wow – way to make a guy feel better! But if you want to talk about the “traps” in regard to relationships, don’t forget that probably half of long-term marriages in the “simpler” days were simply due to women being basically trapped because of no escape options – particularly financial.

          And for Anon – my sympathies – just accept that it is going to really hurt for a while – and shallow platitude but true – it will get better. And perhaps your parents will be more understanding than you anticipate.

          • justinbc

            It wasn’t meant to have a negative connotation. If anything I’m commiserating, because I’ve been in that situation.

          • + 5000. The “simpler” days re: marriage were certainly good if you were a man. I’ll take “relationship ADD” over being trapped in loveless and/or abusive relationships due to finances and oppressive social norms any days of the week.

          • justinbc

            I agree. It wasn’t meant to imply that one was better or worse than the other. Merely that we shouldn’t beat ourselves up over not meeting some standard set by another generation.

    • I’m so sorry. πŸ™

    • Hang in there. I survived a mid-20s divorce and was equally dreading telling my parents. However, I was surprised how well they took it. I was also surprised by how people who I thought would be the most supportive turned out not to be. Your parents may not surprise you but you and they will get through it.

      FWIW, I am now very happily re-married with 2 kids at mid-30s and barely remember that I was ever married before.

    • So sorry to hear this.

      Parents have an instinct about these things; take heart, they will probably surprise you with their insight into what’s been happening, even when you couldn’t have seen it yourself.

      And dating isn’t so bad. I’m about to start dating after 6 years off the market myself. It’s scary as hell, but it’s one of those things that’s healthier than you expect–you’ve probably grown a lot since whenever it was that you’d started dating your wife–you’ll be entering the dating pool older, wiser, and probably richer (even sans liquid savings). Plus DC is a fantastic town for single men–fingers crossed it proves equally fruitful for this single woman!

      Best of luck. I’ll be thinking about you!

    • Hang in there, man. I was in that position about three years ago – late twenties and a failed marriage. Life was depressing for about a year, but I learned more about myself during that time than I ever had before and wouldn’t trade it now. Dating again was scary but it got better. Now I’m seeing a great girl and have a renewed appreciation of the happy times that comes only from experiencing the bad ones. It helped me to talk about it with a therapist and friends. I wish you the best – it sounds like you have a lot of good things going for you.

    • I am so so sorry.

    • Hang in there, went through the same thing. The dread of having to break the news to your parents is probably more stressful than the divorce itself. But just do it, your parents may surprise you with the amount of love and support they give you. Mine certainly did. Rely on your friends and family during this time, don’t become a recluse, don’t hide in shame because you should have none. I’m rooting for you.

    • Thanks for all the support and kind words. I certainly appreciate it. I am in the office today, no use sitting at home and sulking like I did yesterday!

      I do have a lot of good things going for me. I am getting back to the gym, getting Lasik in early April, and just in general going to work hard to take good care of myself. Our marriage has never been great, and we have been discussing this off and on for the last six months. Ultimately it was me who pulled the plug, so I guess I am not super surprised. More worried about telling the parents honestly. I think they will be supportive once they hear the whole story and how it ended etc.

      Again, appreciate all the kind words, and everyone coming out of the woodwork with similar stories. I will certainly get through this.

      Rant6ish: I’m not new here, and you all will certainly recognize me once that time comes.. First the parents need to know though.

      • Well if your parents read PoP they have to be pretty cool!

        • Hahah. Fair enough. My parents certainly do not read PoP! Not really certain who does, and at the moment, only about 5 people (myself and wife included) know about this. Parents absolutely 100% need to hear from me, not via FB or some other way.

    • You’re mid-20s and own a house and enough liquid assets that it makes up for half a house? You’re way ahead of most people in their 30s.
      Sorry to hear about your misfortune but you are really young. You’ll bounce back from all of this and you’ll have plenty of options when you decide to start dating. Way more options than your soon-to-be ex-wife. So take some degree of schaudenfreud’istic solace in that? LOL

      • justinbc

        “Way more options than your soon-to-be ex-wife.”
        What would make you think that?

        • Based on my own experiences and discussions with friends here in DC. Women find dating to be incredibly difficult in The District while single straight guys with a decent job basically treat the city like a dating buffet. Your mileage may vary?
          It sounds like the OP is a fairly good “catch” based on my cursory, superficial evaluation of the info he’s already provided.

          • justinbc

            I’ve definitely heard the same regarding the quality of men on the market, from my female friends. But if we’re generalizing I would say that future male partners for her are less likely to care that she’s been married before compared to future female partners for him. I think many more women hold onto that special “first time” feeling of importance that men are less likely to emphasize. I think they slowly start to reach equilibrium after the 30 year mark though, as most people have at least experienced some serious long term relationship by that point, married or otherwise.

          • “Women find dating to be incredibly difficult in The District while single straight guys with a decent job basically treat the city like a dating buffet. ”

            YES AGREED.

      • I agree, I am in a terrific spot in my life financially, due to a lot of good choices (and some luck – buying in Petworth in 2010)

        RE: schaudenfreud’istic solace (that’s a fun one!) this is uh, awkward, but I guess as I am anon, I can say with 100% certainty that that hasn’t held true so far, nor in the last 3 months of our marriage πŸ™‚

        I totally agree. I am in a good spot, and I am CERTAIN I will bounce back. This is certainly not the end of my life or anything remotely close. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t suck though. When I stood up there and said I do… I meant it, so yes, this sucks.

    • Sorry to hear this.
      You’re in your mid twenties though. While I’m sure divorce is difficult regardless, I would say that you are in a position to lessen the blow. Assuming that your social circle is somewhat like mine (I’m 26), a good number of your friends are probably unmarried. The ones who are married are probably still in those early years when they still have flexibility in their social life, not dictated almost entirely by the marriage.
      Reach out to your unmarried friends, even if you don’t think that they will have anything to offer you or be able to relate in any way. It’ll also help you to have another safety net while you’re trying to figure things out.

      • I would actually say reach out to your married friends as well. They more than single friends can relate to you and your situation. It’s easy for people to say “Oh you’re such and such age, you’ll be fine.” Divorce sucks at any age. And you can’t just put a band-aid over it by going out with your single friends, getting ripped, maybe running through women as self-medication. Just burying the pain of divorce will make it much more difficult to deal with later and probably more severe.

        • I wasn’t saying that he shouldn’t reach out to the married ones as well. They are obviously the ones with the most relatable experience. I was just trying to say that, in addition to the married ones, he should know that the unmarried ones will most likely be more than happy to help out as well. I have seen that most of my married friends are just hesitant to initiate discussion of their relationships with those of us who aren’t married (assuming that we aren’t interested in hearing about it), but they seem relieved and eager to talk about it if we ask.
          I wasn’t just suggesting that OP try to replicate Jason Segel’s experiences in Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Band-aids do serve a purpose though.

      • I am an a nearly identical situation with my friends. Wife and I were the only married people, and everyone else is still unmarried/single.

        I will be fine, there is no doubt there. I do think my good spot will help to “lessen the blow” significantly. No kids or any other foolishness, so this will be a clean break. I did spend the weekend with some buddies, and do have a pretty strong group of friends. Will be fine, just having a tough time at the moment, and it sucks!

    • I think you have to forget trying to compare yourself and your situation to others (including your parents), and how things may or may not have changed societally in the past few decades. Is staying married or getting divorced better FOR YOU (not for the stats)? Sounds like you’ve got a clear head and are not taking it lightly, and if the answer is that it’s clearly better to split, then don’t worry about what others think. It’s gut wrenching at the time, of course, but time marches on. Good luck.

  • Rave: I was the first on my block this morning to shovel his sidewalks!

    Rave #2: All then people who stopped to help when my new bike, still in the box, fell out my back SUV gate into 14th St rush hour traffic on Friday.

  • Rave: Snow day!
    Rant: I always think I’m going to be super-productive on a snow day, and end up sitting around in my sweats online/watching tv. I need to get off my butt and do my yoga dvd…

  • Can any of you helpful, creative folks in Popville give me any recommendations for locations or ideas for my daughter’s first birthday. We aren’t trying to do anything crazy but I’m sure their are some hidden gemsiI haven’t thought if yet. Thanks.

    • 1st birthday parties are for the parents, not the kid, so do whatever makes you and your co-parent happiest. (Be aware that there are a lot of nosy judgmental people who absolutely HATE the traditional cake-smear photo.)
      For my daughter’s first, we had our best friends over– 8-10 people, some with kids, most without– for crepes and champagne.

    • Are you looking for a party venue or a family excursion? My son is 13 months old and loves the Building Museum. You could get tickets for the other kids to go into the building zone for an hour and then have cake in the big hall. For my son’s birthday we took him to the Natural History museum’s interactive room where he got to touch seashells, stones, a stuffed mink, and play with magnifying glasses. They have limited hours, so check the website. Have fun!

    • Check out KidFriendlyDC.com for venue ideas. Agree that the 1st bday is for family and the parents’ friends more than anything. You may need something baby nap friendly. Maybe a friend’s house? Save your $ for the bouncy house/playspace/pony rides when they are 3 or 4.

  • Schadenfreude rave: Cyclist who clearly intended to blow through a red light nutted himself (barely missed going over the handlebars) when the pedestrians crossing legally didn’t yield to him. He had to sit on the curb for a minute before he could limp back onto his bike. Maybe THAT will remind him that red lights apply to bikes too!

    • You’ll probably get raked over the coals by someone, but I have to second your rave. I’ve been the pedestrian in a similar situation and the cyclist wound up with a little road rash for his troubles. Once I was sure he didn’t break anything or hit his head I shrugged and kept walking and all he could do was stare daggers.

      • Nope, I am a cyclist and agree. Please follow the rules of the road, which includes yielding to pedestrians.

        That said, it would be nice for pedestrians to have some notice of what’s going on around them, instead of staring at a smartphone screen.

        • No doubt. Maybe 50% of the time that I walk I’m listening to music but I always take at least one ear bud out when crossing the street, even when I have the light. Too many things can go wrong and a lot of them can be fatal to pedestrians. That said, I usually don’t back down when I’m a pedestrian and I have the right of way, which is probably a dumb way to go about things.

  • Revel: Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon on Saturday. The weather was beautiful and the course was pretty awesome – I really enjoyed seeing so many different areas of DC all in one trek. I’ve done the Marine Corps a couple times and I liked this one much more. Props to all the folks who came out and watched – not as many as for the Marine corps but the spirit was greater, IMO.
    Inquiry: I’d be interested to hear what others thought of the event. I know there was a lot of grumbling about it last week (traffic problems, poor cleanup afterwards, etc.) – what are folks’ thoughts about it after the fact? Better/worse/different than you expected? (Asking seriously – please be civil!)

    • I drove over Rhode Island Ave on Saturday afternoon (around 12:45pm and back again at 2pm) and it was easy to get around. Traffic was no more than usual.

    • I found it annoying just because the cheering woke me up early. On the bright side, I didn’t hear any annoying cowbells like previous years.
      I don’t get watching people run a marathon, it’s like a parade without any throws, what is the point? I guess everyone has different ideas of fun.

      • I’m sure watching a marathon is boring to some people, and I totally get that. For me personally, I enjoy watching and cheering because I occasionally run races myself, and especially in the longer races, it feels good to get a little energy boost from the crowd cheering you on (even if they’re strangers to you, although I think a number of spectators are there to cheer specifically for a friend or relative who’s racing). I like being able to return the favor. Also, I grew up nerdy and awkward in a very youth-sports oriented environment and unfortunately with a couple of phys ed teachers who at best ignored and at worst outright belittled us un-athletic kids. So for me, it’s also just really neat to see people of all ages, sizes, and athletic abilities giving it their all to accomplish their goal, whether that’s a front-of-the-pack time or simply finishing the race.

        • But there are no throws! πŸ˜‰ I get what you are saying, everyone has different interests.

        • binpetworth

          This is exactly why I went out to cheer folks on for a spell on Saturday. I can’t tell you how uplifting it is to have some stranger high-five you during a race; I figured it was my karmic duty to give a little of the love back.

    • I guess I thought there was poor communication. They apparently notified people actually on the route, but if you were within the part of the city that from the route map looked like it was completely closed off, there wasn’t any notice. And even if you did get information from other sources (the Post, PoP, etc), the webpage didn’t give any info on alternative routes out of the part of the city that looked closed off from the map (for what it’s worth, I have this complaint about most major races, but this one just closes off more of the city). I’m all for using the city for events, but I think they need better communication about alternate routes when you are using so many city streets. That said, this year was better than last year, so maybe it’ll be better next year.

  • Rant and note to the campaigns of Jim Graham and Jack Evans: deluging my mailbox with flyers is almost making me want to NOT vote for your candidate out of spite and irritation. I say “almost” because I do take voting seriously and so I still plan to make a decision after careful research on each candidate’s position on various issues, and not something as inconsequential as campaign mail volume…but Christ, how many flyers per week does one person need?!?

    • They are clearly doing a very poor job because I haven’t even gotten one this season! Not complaining, just poor use of campaign funds..

  • Rave: WaPo Sunday declined to endorse the ethically challenged Jim Graham and endorsed Brianne Nadeau.

  • Anyone had any package theft happen to them lately? I think someone swiped a box from my front porch in Shaw after a Saturday FedEx delivery and left some garbage in return (thanks!).

    • Yes! About three weeks ago my roommates and I had several packages stolen from our front porch in Columbia Heights. First time in 4 years that has happened to us.

  • Rant: This winter! I give!!
    Rave: Things are nice and slow at work, and I got in without much problem.
    Rant/question: How long do I let a bridesmaid string me along? I’ve given her many, many outs if she can’t/doesn’t want to buy the dress (truly. I’d rather save our friendship than turn into a bridezilla), but her delay in doing anything or even responding to my texts (no more than twice a week, to ask if all is well or she needs help) is infuriating.

    • Have you straight-out asked her if she doesn’t want to be a bridesmaid any more? If not, maybe you should do so (and let her know that you want to continue being friends with her, either way).

      • That’s the thing – I have! Several times. She claims she’s all in, which yay, but … too old for this sh*t, heh.

        I think it might be getting to the point where I have to pull the “I’m the Bride” card and just say “This is stressing me out too much, and I don’t want to be a nag about it – the stress of this, on top of general life things, isn’t helping a bit and I need to [kick you out].” Still love her. Always will. Have no idea why this is like pulling teeth.

        • First, congrats on your upcoming wedding. Mayyyybbeee she is not responding to your twice a week texts about her getting her shit together for your big day because it is insulting and frustrating? Maybe get the maid of honor on the case and see what’s up – financial difficulty, if she is about to lose it on you if you text her one more time about if she is up for the wedding and getting that dress? I hope you get the perspective and answers you need to move on.

          • * move on with the big day. Good luck

          • I’ve had several face-to-face conversations with her where we laid out a vague timeline and she literally said “I enjoy the reminders! They help me keep things on track, so keep texting me.” I guess my confusion is when I know she’s available via social media and we’ve discussed everything happily, and then … complete radio silence. We’re in our early thirties; now is not the time to fall silent when we’ve been friends since college and know each others’ life situations scarily well. If it’s insulting or frustrating, I want her to tell me! I’m not a mind reader.

            I have no illusions of this being The Greatest Day on Earth, but I would like to know that if I have a question for someone closely involved in the run-up to this, s/he can answer me within a few days. THAT’s the issue I’m having.

        • Is it possible she really wants to be in the wedding, but she’s just not sure if she can swing it? Maybe that’s why she’s dragging her feet. Can you move forward with things even with her undecided? If she gets it together, great, if not you just have two groomsmen walk one bridesmaid down the aisle.

          • We totally can – I just want to know if this is too much for her. I’d like to think she could tell me if anything was wrong (and have no reason to suspect she wouldn’t)!! I just want to drink champagne and dance in a few months, haha.

            But yeah – we definitely have two guys who will probably have a dance-off at the wedding to defend the title of The One True Best Man, so they can absolutely both walk w/ the Maid of Honor. It’s going to be a dance fight for the ages, I assure you. πŸ™‚

          • Available via social media? Call her. No more texts.

          • (To Anon) Totally. I always get caught in the texting/emailing web, but you’re completely right. Gotta pick up the phone!

          • …sigh. That last one was me. Oh, technology.

        • Have you considered buying the dress yourself since it’s your wedding? That way, if the problem is financial, it will be at least partly taken care of. And if the problem is one of scheduling, and ordering the dress by a deadline, that will be taken care of. You sound like a concerned friend, and far from a bridezilla. Having been a bridesmaid on a few occasions, I know that it’s hard to say to a close friend and excited/overwhelmed bride that despite many years of friendship, paying for an expensive dress I’ll never use again, plus shoes, hair, makeup, special underwear to go with the dress, etc. etc. etc is just TOO much. It’s also been hard to say that my day-to-day life stuff really DOES get in the way, and takes priority to someone else’s wedding — however dear to me they happen to be.
          In the end, I think you’ll have to take the initiative in having an honest conversation with your friend. And it might go better for both of you if, in addition to giving her an out, you have a proactive way of addressing what might be her main concerns — from the financial burden, to coping with your deadlines, or whatever the concerns might be.

    • Is she like this about everything else, or is this wedding specific behavior? If this is how she rolls – delay, delay, delay, but she always gets her crap together in the end, then why not trust that this is her way and it works (unless there really is a reason like you know they’re running out of the dress or something). If this is new behavior, then discuss with her if something is going on, but don’t make it about your wedding. Hax would be better at wording, but say she’s acting different than she normally does, you care way more about her than you do your wedding, and want to make sure she’s OK.

      • Yeah, it’s not exactly different, but usually if you say “Hey I need you to do X/Can you meet me at y?” she’s there after the first request. This time it’s repeated, unheeded requests. And truly, the first time I didn’t hear from her for a week, I DID pick up the phone to make sure she was alive, and we met for brunch later that week and talked about life in general.

        The dress, they have to make. Which is so dumb. But the earlier the better, because having never ordered a dress from this place, I have no idea how fabulous (or not) they’ll be. I figure if anyone needs alterations we’ll have a month or so to squeeze them in, if she orders “in time.”

        I love a good Hax-ian reply though, so thank you, and actually, thank all of you! I just need to get my butt in gear on making sure all is well/things will happen/even if they don’t happen, things will be fine. It’s just one day, and frankly it’s a little more important that the groom and I are both there. Everything else is gravy. πŸ™‚

  • Rave: “Snowverit” . Best comment/label I’ve heard re: all this cold white stuff so far.

    Rave: I really have enjoyed the cozy snow days this year. And this week, I got to alternate with warm, wonderful weekends. These Monday snow days really have been nicely scheduled.

    Rave: I ordered something online, and the end, it was significantly less expensive than I expected it to be — yay sales, and a much higher quality than I anticipated. Good use of a snow day!

  • Rave: One last round of sledding weather
    Rant: My Car2Go was missing an ice scraper
    Rant: Got the sneezy grunk cold that has been going around. Sneezed so hard I hit my face on a wall and broke my glasses. In the break room. In front of like 4 people argh.
    Rave: Hubby is still awfully cute for being halfway to 92!

Comments are closed.