Random Reader Rant and/or Revel


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.

249 Comment

  • Rave: Unofficial PoPville happy hour tonight at D.C. Reynolds!
    Question: JustinBC, were you at the Rhode Island Ave. Home Depot last night?

  • Rave: Finally went to Iron Gate for dinner. Delicious cocktails and the food was really good (especially the gemelli pasta with rabbit) . Great service and I loved the atmosphere on their beautiful patio.
    Rant/Rave: My dog is not allowed to sleep in my bed but somehow manages to get in my bed and under the covers at some point in the night without waking me up.

    • Emmaleigh504

      pets are sneaky. my cat always starts at the foot of the bed where she belongs and ends up in the middle of the bed stretched out forcing me off to the side.

      • Haha I regularly wake up with no covers because my dog likes to pull them off of me and wrap herself up in them. And she’s approaching 70 lbs so it isn’t easy getting them back!

    • msmaryedith

      Haha, you took the username!
      I LOVED Iron Gate for dinner. Did you do the multi-course dinner, or the a la carte bistro one? I’ve been to the formal dinner, and brunch a couple of times, and both were great.

      • We did the a la carte bistro menu but I definitely want to go back for the multi-course dinner! I’m still daydreaming about the Nicolaki (their greek yogurt cocktail).

    • I love the new screen name.
      I was thinking about your dinner conundrum more and I remembered something that has helped me in similar-ish situations. Oxytocin is the “love” or “bonding hormone” and I remember reading that it takes women about 30 days to go through withdrawal from it after a relationship ends. My advice is to stay strong for 30 days and see how you feel. But, I have really strong feelings about backsliding that many people don’t share, so feel free to totally ignore this and do what’s best for you.

      • I’m usually feeling better by day 3 but my robot tendencies are failing me this time around! But it’s good to know about the 30 day timeline in case these feelings linger.

    • justinbc

      Under the covers and it doesn’t wake you?? I envy your sleeping skills. People that have tried to wake me are generally greeted with all manner of unpleasantries.

      • I’ve been known to sleep through fire alarms (not a comforting thought) so that probably has something to do with it.
        Thanks for the new name, btw! 🙂

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: equations
    Rave: Younger niece’s birthday today, happy birthday Pucci!
    Rave: Cousin gets new kidney today! Hope all goes well for donors and recipients.

    • Emilie– I thought of you last night when I discovered a “How Swedish Are You?” quiz on Buzzfeed. I would link here but I don’t want it to get lost in moderation. Apparently I am “rather Swedish”.

  • Rant: I came down with a cold yesterday. I’m going on vacation on Saturday. Great timing.
    Rave: It is just a stuffy nose and making me drowsy. Also the first time I’ve had any kind of bug in over a year.

  • Rave: Had a great client meeting yesterday, my weekend of working around the clock paid off and I feel like they are happy and we’re on track (until the next disaster strikes…!)

    Rave: Down 14 lbs since mid-June, as of this morning. Halfway to my goal of 30!! And it’s starting to get easier, I’ve found a lot of snacks and recipes that work well, and cooking dinner every night is becoming a habit. I needed to stop eating out so much regardless of weight loss, so overall it’s been a net positive in my life.

    Rant: I worked ALLLL through the weekend so this feels like the longest week of my life. We have a big deadline on Friday and I am just praying to every possible god that we meet it so that I can actually have a weekend.

    Rant: Nothing else, really, life is pretty good at the moment.

  • Any spider experts out there? I’ve got a large spider living in my car’s passenger side mirror. 40 mph every morning has done nothing to discourage it – it’s just reinforced the web. I’d love to know what kind of spider it is – can post a pic in the flickr pool if anyone thinks they can ID it.

    Rave: it’s like Wild Kingdom every morning on the drive to work.

    • You could try a reverse Google image search – go to Google images and you should see a camera icon on the right side. There you can upload your image and search for a similar image.
      I was able to identify a mystery tree by using this method – pretty cool 🙂

    • All I can say is I recommend a spray bottle of vinegar to get that out of your car without damaging the vehicle.

    • reverse google image wasn’t too helpful – maybe I need to take a better picture. hoping to transfer it from car to garden tomorrow morning. Right now I think it is an orb weaver.

      Thanks for the vinegar tip – another use for amazing vinegar.

      • Is it black and yellow by any chance? Look up garden spider. I used to get them all the time. They are harmless to humans and help you out by eating pesky mosquitoes!

        • no, sort of amber brown with darker banding on the legs, and two white dots on the underside. I watched it wrap up a couple of gnats – lunch I guess – as we sped down Sherman Ave this morning. It’s clearly doing well since it’s at least an inch in size.

          • Emmaleigh504

            I think you should send it in to the Afternoon Animal Fix so we can all see the spider living in your car mirror.

  • SFT

    Rant: The parking attendant in my garage is sick. Every time he brings my car out, I purell the steering wheel, shifter, parking break, door handle, etc. I have a wedding reception this weekend and a babysitter lined up. Cannot, will not, be sick!!!

  • Rant: Waiter asks me if a I want a coffee before I have a chance to see the menu, I say sure. I get the bill and I see that it’s the most expensive coffee on the menu. Come on, man.

    Rave: the waffles were good, but I won’t mention the restaurant and give yuo any pub since your waiter hustled me.

  • Rave: the History of Metro talk last night at MLK library was really interesting. I had no idea Gallery Place didn’t open on Metro’s opening day.
    Rave: I went dancing last night (swing dancing, aka lindy hop) and had a great time. I’m mostly on my way to making this a regular thing again.
    Rave: I participated in a video project for a friend and I can’t wait to see the edited video. It’s cool that he’s taking it upon himself to get people’s input and spread ideas.
    Rave: I’m pretty sure I’m getting my own brewing equipment after over a year of not being able to coordinate with my brewing buddy. By the time I get it all together it’ll be a little late to start a pumpkin beer, but I don’t care, I’m making one anyway.
    Rave: I’m really excited about PoPville happy hour tonight!

    • I was at the Metro talk last night! I enjoyed it 🙂

    • Where was this swing dancing?? I know Glen Echo has these events. If it wasn’t there, details please?

      • Not to speak for Jeslett, but I know every Tuesday evening the Josephine Butler Parks Center (across from Meridian Hill Park on 15th St) has swing dancing. Free lessons at 8 pm, then dancing from 9 to 12 if memory serves. You can get more info by googling “Jam Cellar DC”

      • Well GE has lots of swing dancing, though mostly on Saturday nights (btw, Sept 6th will be a good one). But, during the week the best place to go is the Jam Cellar. They have a djed dance every Tuesday at the Josephine Butler Parks Center on Meridian Hill Park. There is a beginner lesson every week and they offer lesson series as well. It’s $7 and goes from 9-11:15, the lesson is included in the price and goes from 8-9.
        You DO NOT need a partner.

        • skj84

          I second the Jam Cellar love! The community is really open to new dancers as well. There are dances at Chevy Chase Ballroom as well.

    • Did you go to the Butler Center on 15th for the swing dancing?

    • Where did you hear about the History of Metro talk? That sounds so fascinating and I’m always looking for interesting lectures in the city.

      • This reminds me of a question for PoPville: where do you find out about events? What are your best sources of info?

        • Umm….it was posted on PoPville.

        • PoPville. Really! 😉

        • skj84

          Popville of course! And I’m a huge fan of Gregslist DC. It’s a great resource for all sorts of events in the city.

          • Thanks for the Gregslist rec. There are always cool things happening around town, but I feel like I miss them b/c it’s hard to find out about things without actively visiting dozens of websites.
            Would love to hear from other PoPvillagers about how they find out about embassy events, interesting speakers, etc. (in general, not just this one talk at MLK).

          • justinbc

            Washingtonian sends out weekly emails with highlighted happenings.

        • I always wonder these things too. I once popped into the Portrait Gallery and they were doing BYOB trivia in the atrium. Another time I passed outdoor yoga right off the Metropolitan Bike Trail lane at S St. How do these people know about these things?? I must live under a smaller rock than I thought.

      • it was posted on here about a week ago

    • dcgator

      Haha, I was there, too. I thought it was great…but I didn’t get to ask my question about the naming of the Metro stops. Like, Ballston definitely means Ballstown, right (I know, it’s not a Metro moniker, but still funny to me, nonetheless)?

  • Rave: After an absence of several months, I saw Inappropriate PDA Couple in the cafeteria yesterday. Lunch and a show!

    Rave: Perhaps they had ridden once in the cab I was in this morning since the driver had a sign taped to his visor “Kissing is inappropriate in my office”

    Rave?: The Food Babe’s take on Starbucks “Pumpkin” Spice Latte. One revelation is that when made with soy milk, it’s still not vegan. If you don’t follow the Food Babe, why not?

    Rant: New CIO and continued rumors of significant layoffs.

    • Excellent raves, and great tip about Food Babe and the beverage that I can’t even bring myself to name. Another reason to avoid that crap.
      Re: your rant, are you especially concerned about your own job?

      • Formerly Broken Jaw

        Yes, I feel very vulnerable. I’ve been here 11 years but I’m “new” to this department and have been underutilized and I think it is because they don’t want to give me anything big since I will be the sacrificial lamb.

        • I’m so sorry, FBJ, and can imagine how precarious the work environment might feel. How are you holding up/managing it? (Sorry if you’ve already talked about this and I’ve missed it.)

    • I loved the hyperbole of “toxic dose of sugar.” Like sugar is akin to anthrax.

      • Phrases like that just make me want to start mainlining sugar.

      • Formerly Broken Jaw

        That’s why she’s the Food Babe!

      • She’s known for her casual relationship with the facts of science. She is much more interested in a reading-because-they’re-scared audience than in an educated making-their-own-good-decisions audience. In other words, she’s the Fox News of food writers.

        • Exactly. Her “exposé” of beer a few months ago was high on drama and low on evidence. Many brewers and industry experts tried to provide hard evidence refuting some of her claims on her website but were subsequently banned. I think she exists mainly to generate clicks and groupies.

    • skj84

      PDA Couple? In a work cafeteria? That is so gross.

      • Formerly Broken Jaw

        The weird thing is they sit at a long table with a lot of other people who seem to be there with them.

    • I was on the Amtrak a few months ago and a couple sat down in the seats facing me and started making out intensely. Every time I looked up from my laptop for a second the guy would make eye contact with me. So gross but so funny.

      • skj84

        I have some gross PDA stories from working in restaurants. People are shameless.

      • There was a couple that used to work out at my old fitness center. They’d hold hands as they walked from machine to machine and kiss between sets. ALL. THE. TIME.

      • A friend from Australia alerted me to a video surreptitiously shot on a Melbourne commuter train of two young women (they looked like Basics to me, haha) who decided to pass the time via one of them getting down on her knees and, uh, “servicing” the other one. They were in a back corner seat and fully clothed (I guess one of them had her skirt hiked up to provide access to her, uh, “service entrance”) so I guess they didn’t realize anyone could see them until eventually they notice the guy filming and give him the evil eye for ruining their little moment.

  • Rave: Best book I have read this year, “A spy among friends: Kim Philby and the great betrayal” by Ben Macintire. Great conservation about british privilege and friendship.
    Rant: looking for the next great book to read

    • I loved Motoring with Mohammed by Eric Hansen. Currently reading his Stranger in the Forest: On Foot Across Borneo. Great travel writer — this guy has been on some amazing journeys. They don’t make me jealous or longing for the same trip (which is nice because I’m way too easily sidetracked by that) and he’s both insightful and hilarious. You really learn about the cultures and people of where he’s traveling because he just goes with the flow and exists in the world.

    • Might I suggest “My Silent War” BY Kim Philby?

    • If you like war/espionage stories, “The Fist of God” by Frederick Forsyth. It’s a historical novel about the first Gulf War and what might have happened if Saddam had a nuclear weapon. It’s one of my favorite books.

      For non-fiction epsionage, “You’re Stepping on My Cloak and Dagger” by Roger Hall. Very funny and informative book.

      • In that genre, The Gunseller, by Hugh Laurie (yes, of House MD fame) was a terrific read, both funny and thriller-like. He seems to be one of those renaissance types: tries something, excels at it, moves on. I think it’s his only novel, and it’s from 10+ years ago.

        • Emmaleigh504

          Steve Martin is another one of those types, he wrote a book that I really liked in the late 90s or early 2000s. And they both play musical instruments well. It’s like some people get all the artistic talent.

          • Martin’s “Cruel Shoes” (I think it was written in the 70s) is one of the funniest books I’ve ever read.

            wdc, thanks for the suggestion. I requested the Laurie book from the library.

  • Rant: I took a new job with the gov 4 months ago (transfer from another agency) under the stipulation that I would receive a bump in grade after 3 months…it has been 4 and HR is still not sure if they can give me the raise even though the final offer letter THEY drafted and were cleared to give me said they could and would. This not only shorts me money but also impacts my next promotion.

    • justinbc

      Man that stinks, but given how I’ve seen government HR operations run before (and yes I realize that many are great) that’s not at all surprising, especially with constantly looming budget pressures.

    • HR is the hold up? And not your own office? WTF? Why aren’t they sure they can give you the raise?

      • From what I am being told it is that I do not have a year in grade at my current position. They are confused as hell on how to process this for some reason even though they have agreed to it. I took a demotion (in name only) to come to this new job under the impression they would do right by me. I made sure I covered my bases and have kept all email traffic and the official offer letter.

        Back story: I was an 11 at my old job, took this new job as a 9 with equal pay under the stipulation that I be returned to an 11 within 3 months (give them time to officially review me). I said great and got that in writing in my offer letter from the agency.

        • Ah, that makes sense. Yeah, many HR departments completely fail in doing anything that is an anamoly of any kind. Such a pain when you have to tell them what needs to be done (i had the pleasure of doing that about 3 years ago). Good luck!

        • They would code it as a non-competitive promotion. Since you were previously an 11, you have already competed for that grade. As long as your current position has an FPL that is an 11 or higher they should just be able to promote you back to the 11. I’d post a link to the 5 CFR but I know some of the links haven’t been going through.

          • I’d appreciate it if you could post the link…if it works it works…if not no worries. Might give me some more ammo to push HR.

    • I believe there is a government-wide regulation that you have to be in your grade for a year before you’re eligible to be promoted to the next one.

      • That is the general rule but there are exceptions. In addition, I was a 9 for about a year and a half at a similar position and was already an 11. I explained a little more after I posted (see above).

        • Try checking the Guide to Processing Personnel Actions on the OPM site. Chapter 14 covers promotions. It doesn’t necessarily tell you the relevant regulation but it does demonstrate that situations like yours exist and that there is a procedure in place. Hopefully Anon above who mentioned a link to the 5 CFR can provide you more insight.

    • I suggest contacting your union rep.

      • Would love to but this position isn’t unionized. My last one was and now I am regretting it.

        • every time someone complains about the union allowing bad workers at Safeway, Metro, DCPS, etc. I am going to remind them of this post. Unions matter!

        • anonymouse_dianne

          Even if the position is not union, AFGE may be able to help you. My understanding is they will represent you if you are not management (Grade 13 and above). It would be worth it to give them a shout out. They might be able to steer you in the right direction. They are on facebook bTW.

  • Rant/Query: Across the street from the Friendship Heights Metro station the corner has curb cuts. Between the two curb cuts, there’s actually a raised concrete platform about 4 inches higher than the rest of the sidewalk. People have to maneuver around it to get to the curb cuts. If it’s intended to be a safety feature, it’s definitely not. Does anybody have any idea why such a thing was constructed?
    Rant: Construction noise. For the past two days it’s been horrible. Since I’m not getting enough sleep, I’ve been horrible. And having terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days.
    Rave: Got a packet of books yesterday through Amazon. I don’t know how people make money pricing them at a penny a pop plus postage — but I’m loving it.
    Rant/Rave: Two steps forward and one step back. Which is still better than one step forward and two steps back.
    Rave: Yesterday’s discussion re: Comfy shoes. Keens in my future?

    • I think my comment got eaten yesterday, but Born (with a Scandanavian slash through the O – can’t figure out how to do it on my keyboard) and Soft are great too. I trekked all over Italy in Born shoes and they are great.

      • Second the Born rec, and the Sofft rec, too (it has 2 fs – I learned this by failing to find them in searches for forever after I discovered them!).
        I saw that thread yesterday, too, and am now contemplating getting a pair of the NB Cobb Hill shoes!

        • houseintherear

          I’m on my second pair of Cobb Hill Bethany boots. I stand for about 7 of my 9 hours at work each day, and those boots were just about the best thing that ever happened to me!

  • Rave: This weather.

    Rant: Granted, we’ve lived in roughly the same area our entire time in DC (Dupont, Kalorama, Adams Morgan), but no matter where we go, we can’t get away from UIP. They are buying everything in NW. We just moved into a new place that I seriously doubt they’d ever purchase (knock on wood). Finally free from them. Then yesterday, they start gutting the building that backs up to our unit. I checked the permit and it looks like it’s going to be nonstop racket until the spring. Between that and DC Water digging for Pompeii out our front door, I’m not sure we’ll ever have a peaceful weekday.

  • Rave: Today is my Friday. 5 day weekend!
    Ambivalence: Gap Factory store coming to DC USA. Not my first choice but it’s better than empty space. Anyone know which space it is taking over?

    • looks like it’s going in the spot between staples and children’s place.

    • WHAT! Say it ain’t so…they’re already putting a GAP downtown where the Crumbs was. Sigh, I’d much prefer the rumored Chick Fil A

    • jim_ed

      Fine, maybe I’m the only person stoked for the Gap factory store. It’s a great place to by work clothes for a business casual office, and now I won’t feel compelled to drive out to the Leesburg outlets once every couple of months to buy new shirts. We all know DCUSA is only going to take chain tenants, so I’m happy to see one I’ll use regularly.

      • I’m stoked! I love affordable basics 🙂

      • I haven’t been to a Gap Factory store in a long time, but from what I remember, Gap sales are often better than Gap Factory prices. They often have extra 30-50% off sale promotions both in store and online. Banana Republic too. I never buy anything at Gap full price because there’s always a coupon available.

      • msmaryedith

        jim_ed, did you know there is a GAP Factory store in Old Town, too? (as well as one at the new outlets at National Harbor). A lot closer than Leesburg! I’m with you–I get some great deals on basics there (cardigans, etc). You do have to time it right sometimes and mostly hit the sale section, but I bought something like 2 dresses, two swimsuits, two pairs of shorts, a skirt, two blouses, two cardigans and a pair of jeans there for under $100 earlier this summer.

        • jim_ed

          I did not know that. I have no idea why, but the Alexandria area is never on my radar of places to go. Truth be told, we usually hit the GAP outlet at Arundel Mills, and will probably continue to visit because there is no place better on earth to people watch than Arundel Mills. It’s like someone crossed a county fair with dundalk and a suburban mall from 1996, and then they ADDED A CASINO. It’s beautiful, really.
          But I digress. You definitely need to bargain shop the factory outlet the same you would a normal Gap, but when done right I can walk out with several button downs and pants for less than $100, and the quality is miles ahead of H&M and their ilk.

      • justinbc

        I won’t knock the gap. It’s the only place I can find boxers that don’t have those damned annoying tags on the waist.

  • gotryit

    Rave: Despite some of the negativity going around, I am really excited for my kids’ new school year.

  • GiantSquid

    Rant: Baby shower for two pregnant women at work. They are lovely people, but I will be skipping it. Not sure how I feel about showers in the workplace.
    Rant/Revel: Something unpleasant happened with a good friend of mine who’s at the same workplace, he was pretty bummed yesterday. So I brought him flowers, tea, and dark chocolate digestives. I feel like it balances out my missing the baby shower.
    Revel: Visiting friend in Florida in two days!

    • Emmaleigh504

      I have a baby shower conundrum at work. We’ve had them in the past (either full on cake things or just a quiet card and gift card) and now one of my team members is expecting. I feel like I have to arrange this thing and I suck at arranging. And to complicate things we are contractors but work very closely with feds (previous expecting parents were both feds), so have to get this maybe party thing cleared by about a billion people. So complex!
      Rave: We are an equal opportunity little library b/c we’ve done showers for expecting moms and expecting dads.

    • Emmaleigh504

      Also, that so sweet of you to give your friend/coworker a treat when they had a bad day! I need to start doing that.

    • I’m not a fan of at work baby showers—especially surprise ones. I hate sitting in a dark conference room for a “surprise” party. This event is usually preceded by hourly reminders sent with degree of efficiency otherwise unseen in this department to contribute to the present, to not tip off Baby Mama, and oh yeah, have you contributed to the present yet?

    • saf

      I dislike showers in the workplace.

    • SFT

      I’m not really a fan of workplace showers either. My office gave me a shower last year, along with another pregnant woman and a soon-to-be dad. They asked us to invite our partners, which I thought was weird. I mean, I didn’t even want to go, so to have my husband take time off of work to come and stand around a room with my office folk didn’t seem like a fun thing to do. Luckily, I had false labor that day, had to rush to the hospital, and missed the whole thing! I did enjoy the Target gift card and the leftover sheet cake. Pregnancy made me crave vanilla grocery store sheet cake 🙂
      Enjoy Florida. I just got back from a quick week in the panhandle – it’s HOT down there!

    • Baby showers aren’t really work appropriate (in my humble), given the challenges many face with infertility/adoption issues etc. I think they belong in a restaurant at lunch – or an employee’s home – and not the office. It was really nice of you to cheer your work colleague…

      • Fertility challenges are irrelevant, showers just aren’t work appropriate, full stop.
        Have the shower on your own time (lunch, after work, weekend).

      • That’s kind of like saying we shouldn’t celebrate birthdays because we all know people who have died and cannot celebrate their birthday anymore.

        Having a baby is a blessing for many people and it’s their right to celebrate it. Outside of work of course 🙂

      • “… given the challenges many face with infertility/adoption issues etc.” One of my favorite DCUM threads from all time included that reasoning. Something like “It’s selfish and cruel for you to talk about your kid jumping on the beds or bolting into the street, because there are children in the world who don’t have legs!!”

      • really? i never thought of this. i’m always excited for showers (bridal and baby), retirement parties, graduation parties (usually for our graduate interns), etc. It’s nice doing something at work that doesn’t involve putting out the latest fire. our showers or celebrations are never more than an hour, are usually around lunch time, and are totally optional. i mean, there is probably some peer pressure to attend, but we just had a retirement party today at lunch, and a few people who had prior engagements didn’t show up and no one is mad about it.

    • Not to mention that there are ethical restrictions on gifts passing between lower salary to higher salary employees, as well as probably between feds and contractors.

      • Emmaleigh504

        I wish I could get you to reason my with my work group so I can get out of planning this. Though I do like cake/snacks at work 🙂

      • Baby gifts are allowed by OGE for federal employees. According to OGE, for federal employees, the giving and accepting of appropriate gifts recognizing special, infrequent events provided that the events are occasions of personal significance (such as marriage, illness, or the birth or adoption of a child) is allowed.

        • Aha, I forgot about the “special infrequent event” ones. See, this is why I’m not ethics counsel. 🙂

  • Rave: Had to stay late at work on Monday for a big report coming out (stupid job is stupid), but it didn’t make me want to hurl myself under a train. Also, the office mayhem on Tuesday was minimal.
    Rave: Had a date on Monday (first one in months!) that went well. Dude seems really nice and interesting.
    Question: Where to go for food before a Bohemian Caverns show on Friday? Vinoteca is an obvious choice, and dude mentioned 1905. I don’t get up to U Street often enough to know the best places. Any ideas, PoPvillians?

  • Rant: Second day of crying at work. A number of people have left, so their work is falling to me and I don’t really know what I’m doing, but it’s a high level project, so it’s seen by a lot of people. I’m making dumb mistakes and pretty much feel like everyone in my office (who’s left) hates me and I’m doing a crappy job altogether. Really tempted to quit, but know that I can’t.

    • Your work situation sounds really difficult. Do you still have a supervisor? Or is there someone you can ask for advice or just moral support?
      I’ve only started a role that puts my out of my comfort zone and it’s definitely making me question a lot about myself, sometimes not in a good way. I can’t imagine getting a bunch of different positions dumped on my at once. Good luck!

      • Thank you both! Unfortunately, my supervisor is one of the ones who left and now I don’t really have one. It’s just really, really frustrating. But thank you!!

    • So sorry that this has happened to you! In high pressure situations I tend to rush to get things out and then realize there are small mistakes later. Try to focus on all the good you’re doing (aka all the work you ARE getting to) and the fact that if you weren’t there then who knows how else it would get done. Also try to communicate that you’re overwhelmed without being too complain-y. (It’s a fine balance!) It’ll help others empathize with the spot you’re in, and maybe build some rapport with them. I’m sure everyone doesn’t hate you, it’s just easy to feel that way when you’re already overwhelmed (as they may also be). Meanwhile, get that resume polished up. I hope it gets better for you soon!

  • Rant: Ridiculous micromanaging from the top of my organization. Put systems in place and create efficiency.
    Rave: Awesome coworkers that listen to my rants.
    Rave: I went to an amazing yoga class last night.
    Rave: Lovely, sweet friends who are about to grow their family. It is wonderful to see good things happen to those I love.

  • Rave-ish: Buzzfeed parody of the bizarre practice of describing people of color in novels with food references (i.e. “warm toffee colored cheeks”. It feels good to know that other people read this stuff as bizarre.
    Rave-ish Buzzfeed article on Karyn Johnson. I’m saddened by her death, and even more saddened by how difficult it is , in reality, to pull off being a “carefree black girl”. But much applause to buzzfeed for spreading the word.
    Rant: As much as I read, it’s pretty sad when the best things I’ve read this week were articles from buzzfeed. I’m grateful for Atlantic!!!!! — and wistful for the time when I’d get the Sunday New York Times, the Washington Post, and a Bagel with lox combo and spend the better part of a day reveling in well-written articles.

    • skj84

      Oh I love the Atlantic. I read it online rather than print, same with Washington Post and New York Times. I do miss the feeling of reading the Sunday Times in print though. Your Sunday morning ritual sounds divine!

  • hispanicandproud

    Rave: Last night’s track workout was super tough but fun even on a bummed-taped ankle.
    Rave: Having a 25-year-old at track tell me that I’m super fit. Not bad for an old man! Still smiling about her comment.
    Rave: Meeting friends today at lunch for an outdoor bootcamp. Talk about being under pressure now!
    Rant: Another coworker bites the dust and leaves… another soon to follow.

  • skj84

    Rave: Good networking event last night. Even though I’m tired of networking. I feel so fake doing it.

    Rant: I left a library book at my sisters house in Minnesota by accident last month. I keep reminding her to mail it to me and she hasn’t yet. I know she is crazy busy and all, but I need that book back! I have a fine now. She’s moving next week and I’m afraid the book will get lost in the move. Plus I haven’t even had the chance to read the book, I was using her laptop bag while I was there and forgot to take it out.

    Looking forward to PoPville Happy hour tonight! I will probably get there early. I haven’t figured out what I’m wearing yet, but it may or may not involve a hat.

    • Emmaleigh504

      This is probably bad advice…If your sister returns the book to her public library they may return it for you. A public library I used to work for did that all the time. The whole interlibrary loan thing made it cheaper for them to do it than a regular person. And it was a really touristy area so we constantly got other libraries’ books.

    • DC library let me replace a book (destroyed by my dog) instead of paying the fine/fee for a lost book. The book (ironically on dog training) was inexpensive on Amazon.

      • I had to chuckle at the idea of your dog destroying a book on dog training.

      • That is some class A irony. 🙂

      • janie4

        I don’t know if I’d call it ironic. Look at it from the dog’s point of view. You brought in the book, and expected him to change his comfortable routine because of it. He took out the enemy’s training manual. Sounds pretty smart of him (and funny)

  • Rant: Lady on metro this morning was plucking her eyebrows. All the little hairs dropping in her lap, seat, and floor. Then came the blush, and eyelash curler, and mascara. Please ladies, don’t do this.

    • Emmaleigh504

      gross. I hate the women who run their fingers through their long hair and pull out the loose ones and just scatter the hairs everywhere. They always seem to be standing over me. I don’t want to shower in other people’s hair!

      • Oh no, I’m sorry, but I totally do this. What should I do with the loose hairs though? And running my hands through my hair is sometimes a necessity (e.g., if hair is stuck in purse strap) and is definitely a habit.
        On a related note, I’ve always wondered if my hair droppings (ew) have ever shown up in a crime investigation, bc I shed like a big hairy dog in summer.

        • Put the hairs in your pocket. Or purse. Like you would do with a candy wrapper or something.

        • Emmaleigh504

          Pulling your hair out of your purse strap is fine, combing your hair with your fingers while you stand over people is gross! Wait until you are in a bathroom, at home, or not around people on metro. I have no problem if some one does it by the door when no one is around, but they never do, they always seem to be on a packed train standing over other people. Combing your hair can wait!

      • justinbc

        Combing is gross, but I think many girls do the common hand running out of habit, no? To be honest I’ve always found it a bit alluring (depending on the subject of course), although I think many do it on purpose because of that.

        • Emmaleigh504

          no not running a hand through their hair, combing it with their fingers to find the loose hairs, two entire different things.

          • justinbc

            Yeah that’s a WTF are you doing kind of thing.

          • justinbc

            Now I’m imagining the looks I would get if I combed my beard on the bus…

          • Well, I shed like no one’s business and there are times when I brush my hair away from my face or out of a purse strap and I find that there is a lingering stray hair, half in and half out of my hair. I don’t know if I have hyper sensitivity to this stuff, but a loose hair on my skin drives me insane, so I will go after it.
            Sorry, but it annoys me too much not to remove it. I also drop these on the floor, because it’s a hair and you won’t even be able to see it.

          • Emmaleigh504

            That’s different. A lingering stray hair or two that you drop on the floor is no biggie (to me). But if you are combing all the loose hairs out of your head while you are standing over people so the stray hairs fall on them, then there’s a special Hell.

          • I’m with you, jeslett. Super shedder lady over here. I try so hard to not be nasty with it, but I’m sure I’ve grossed people out in public spaces before by doing things like letting strays drop on the ground. I gross -myself- out with it.
            The idea of disposing the hair discreetly or at home is definitely ideal, but it’s hard to do that when you lose as much as I do. And yes, I’m trying to figure out why I shed so much, and no I don’t look even remotely bald.

    • skj84

      While I’ve never plucked my eyebrows on the metro I am guilty of doing my makeup on occasion. At least when I worked the job that required me to be up at 5:00am. In my defense I would only do it on mostly empty trains. And just stick to eyeshadow and mascara, not the whole face.

    • Public grooming is about as interesting to watch as public displays of affection.

    • What’s the issue with makeup (of the non smelly/messy variety) – eyeshadow, blush…I TOTALLY understand and agree on plucking, perfume, nail clipping, hair – anything that gets on other people or stinks. But what is blush hurting? I mean, I am certainly not coordinated enough to do it, but if someone is and stays in their space, I don’t understand the aversion.

  • Rant: Bicycle thieves. Some scumbag dumped a bike in my front yard last night. Some other scumbag walked by this morning and stole the front wheel off it.

    Revel: I saw scumbag #2 steal the wheel, sprinted down the street (in my slippers) after him and snatched it right out of his hand.

    Rant:#2 That was way too much adrenaline first thing in the morning. I now have a headache.

    If anyone is missing a red Mongoose Threshold bike, please check Craigslist lost and found where I will post a photo. I emailed a photo to PoP – but don’t know if it will be posted since he is away.
    The bike has two stickers on the frame and a distinctive seat that you much be able to describe to prove owership. (Or have some good photos of you with the bike, or serial number, but I don’t know where that is.)

  • Rant: I have to be in Towson early Friday evening. I hope I can leave early enough to avoid rush hour and holiday traffic.

    Rave: It’s for a really fun gig.

    Rave: Happy hour tonight and DC Blues Festival Saturday.

  • Rave: Friend cancelled on me tonight, thus freeing me for PoPville happy hour.
    Rant: Forgot about happy hour and made plans with the Girlfriend, so won;t be able to make happy hour.

  • Rant: Realizing that the new contract I’m on is pretty much work remotely…I need to talk to my company about getting me a space at we-work, I cannot sit in my dark apartment (not much natural light at all) for 8 hours a day. Any ideas how to approach this subject?
    Rave: Going to the UMD football game vs JMU on saturday, friends/family/beer/football season

    • skj84

      Oh I love the Wework space! I wish I could afford a unit there. I would just ask if they would consider paying for an office. If not there are a lot of great coworking spaces in the city. I also recommend Cove and Uberoffices. And the library. I feel your pain on being stuck at home, though I’m job searching rather than working. But it’s important to get out of the house, I get distracted when I’m at home.

  • GAP Factory Outlet Store coming to DCUSA –

    RAVE: One less empty storefront.
    RANT: GAP is so meh.
    RAVE: At least the Pitbull crew set up across the street will have somewhere to buy reasonably priced denim and knits.

  • Becks

    Rave: There is a potluck at the office today! Free lunch!
    Rant: Co-workers didn’t let me know there was a potluck! Last week, an email was sent out that asked if we would like to have a potluck on Thursday. Today is Wednesday! There is a serious lack of communication in this office!
    Rave: This is the motivation I need to start looking for another position. Can anyone suggest where to start? I have 2 years program analyst experience in the government, 14 years education experience, am an Asian Expert. I have looked and applied on USAJOBS but of the hundreds of jobs I have applied for, have received only a few responses. I am thinking about private sector or contracting positions. Any advice?

    • how do you have 14 years of education experience? What is an Asian Expert? And don’t feel bad about the Pot Luck, i work as a govt contractor and theres not much better communication over here..

    • Asian expert is vague. Expert on Asian politics? Econ? Everything? What skills do you have other than being an expert on the biggest continent in the world?

    • At my old job in education, we used this term to identify those who were skilled or highly knowledgeable in the education practice of Asian countries (this could be policy, teaching styles/practices, and overall structures of Singapore, Japan, S. Korea, Hong Kong.) Not sure if this is what Becks is referencing, but I always thought it was a bizarre descriptor.

    • Becks, are you currently in the government?

    • Becks

      I have 14 years of experience in teaching, program design, professional development in Education. My BA and MS are Asian Studies and Chinese Science. You are correct that the Asian Expert comment was vague. To be specific, Chinese history, language and culture.

    • Becks

      Sorry. I tried to post, and I wasn’t able to. It was vague, but I was trying not to put too much info out there, while trying to show my experience. That would be 14 years in the Education field, and my background is in Chinese history, science, language and culture.

    • I’d also be interested in some ideas, I have a Japanese/international relations background (entry level though, just been working a few years) and I’m starting to look for new jobs. Stress stress stress…

      Good luck with the job hunt!

      • Hm. I also have a Japanese/IR background. I wonder if we’re applying for the same jobs. 😛

        • You do?! Haha, nice to meet someone else with a similar background! I haven’t been looking a whole lot yet. I like my job just fine (work for a Japanese organization), but there’s no upward mobility and the pay sucks… The people are great though and the work can be interesting so I haven’t been in full-on search mode. (Also, my language skills are not great, just conversational, so that cuts out on a lot of the Japanese opportunities.)

    • It is hard to tell from your descriptors what your experience is. If your resume has the same descriptions, it might help to have someone not in the field take a look at it and see if what you want to convey is coming through (ignore if you’ve just used shorthand for a RRRR post).

  • Internet Rave 1: #TacoBeerChallenge. I’m annoyed by the ALS challenge– there are what, 3,000 ALS sufferers in the US? (The cynic in me will be reeeeaally interested to know how much each of them will see from the $100M raised.) And dumping a bucket of ice on your head looks unpleasant and dumb (not to mention wasteful of water if I’m gettin’ preachy). Tacos, beer, and reproductive health, now… THAT is something that EVERYONE will benefit from.
    Internet Rave 2: Humans of New York, still, again, maybe always.

    • Humans of New York is killing me with this trip. I think I mean that in both really good and really bad ways, there’s just so much heartbreak and joy in it.

    • MacLeans had a great article — “Why the Ice Bucket Challenge is Bad for You” — that gets to your point re: the rarity of ALS vs greater needs elsewhere. I gave to Doctors without Borders. And no ice.

    • Emmaleigh504

      I thought the money went to ALS research, not to individuals. I’ve avoided the whole thing except for T-Hidds (cuz hottt) and Orlando Jones b/c people I really like recommended it. And I continue to give to my favorite charities: International Rhino Foundation and Planned Parenthood.

      • I very much doubt there exist enough ALS researchers and labs to absorb anything close to what’s been raised. The trouble with disease research is only partly lack of funding… it’s also a lack of the right kind of researchers, with the right kind of training, to come up with the ideas to research, and to develop the studies. Top drawer researchers aren’t working at starbucks waiting for their big break, which will happen just as soon as the money comes through.
        I would be happy if some of it went to sufferers, to offset their medical costs, make their spaces more accessible, to pay for long term care, etc. I believe that the big change will be in the size of the advocacy organizations, and the size of their executives’ paychecks.
        But I’d be even happier if folks realized that a $50 donation to the ALS foundation (or to any medial research) isn’t going to help anyone, and that you can get much bigger bang for your charitable buck elsewhere. (Like Planned Parenthood, which provides direct services and needs $$ to keep doing so.)

        • Emmaleigh504

          All that makes sense. I was just hoping whoever started it did their research and found a good charity to donate to. I think it would be great if the money could go to individuals, but I don’t see that happening.
          Shameless rhino charity plug: IRF (rhinos dot org) uses money to directly help threatened groups of rhinos in Asia and Africa. You can adopt individual Sumatran rhinos like Bina (my personal fave); or you can send money to fund programs like security for rhinos in both Asia and Africa. They train people and dogs to protect rhinos from poachers.

        • My friend has ALS and she pleaded with people to basically stop doing it. Very little money actually goes to research or toward patient services. In fact, you can look on their website and see that at least 50% of their budget goes to admin, fundraising and education/awareness (aka they buy advertising).

    • 30,000 actually.

    • Serious rave: Humans of New York right now. This whole trip. Wow.

  • Rave: Emilie504 is a most excellent enabler. Truly a master.
    Rave: My lovely new earrings are arriving today.
    Rave: My younger daughter turns 15 today!
    Rant: I need at least 14 more hours of sleep.

  • Rant: Wrote a long post – but posted it too quickly. Poof gone!
    Rant: Too lazy to re-type because my head hurts and I have a cold.
    Rave: There were plenty of raves in there about the weekend with Accountering and his family…such a great time!
    Rant: No HH for me, this cold is kicking my rear. Any suggestions for quick recovery? Thanks! So sorry to miss some of you tonight (but figured you would appreciate me not sharing my germs)!

    • So glad you had a good weekend with the other family! It took me years to get adjusted to my significant others’ family, and the first few times I met them (way back when we were first dating) I was SUCH an awkward turtle.

      • Thanks so much 🙂 They were very easy to be around, plus I got the relevant briefings on the who’s who on the front end. A large portion of the relatives were from the midwest, so I think they were naturally very kind and inclusive (and sensitive to the fact that I was new to the group). We had a blast!

    • justinbc

      For future reference, generally if you hit the back button it saves your post content.

  • Rave: Working from home today, and my cat is in a very snuggly mood.
    Rave: Bought a bunch of bulbs (daffodil, crocus) at Home Depot last night. Looking forward to having flowers in my yard in the spring!

  • Rave: I leave for Italy on Friday!!
    Rant: Friday is still 2 days away.

  • Rave: Finally had time to sit down and watch the 3 episodes of Outlander that I had taped on my DVR. WOW!! great show and may watch all three again (when I get another 3hrs to blow)

  • The Shakespeare free-for-all should go back to Carter Barron. Dammit.

  • If you post the link with extra spaces and ‘at’ instead of the @ symbol, it might go through — since it won’t be in the format of a link.

  • actually I’d say more people have drivers in the third world, where the few people who make middle-class money by global standards are often phenomenally wealthy.

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