Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user joseph.gruber

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.

Ed. Note: Threaded comments should be working again, please let me know if you have any problems.

148 Comment

  • Rant: The Washington Post article about increasing burglaries in Brookland. As a new resident, I love the neighborhood but this is making me nervous. Any one have thoughts about it?

  • Today, I’ve just got a rant: the “nonstop party” on P St between 6th and 7th NW, where a bunch of guys hang out all day long every day, often drunk and peeing in public. I have to walk by it every day and every night and the “partiers” now seem to be really settling in, as if this block is their campground. Yesterday morning they had set up milk crates to sit on, and were there when I left the house, when I came home, and when I left the house again this morning.

    I’m very sympathetic to the fact that these guys may not have other places to go and am more frustrated by than I am with these people as individuals. But it’s still not a pleasant thing to have right near my house. The ANC commissioner has been basically unresponsive and while the police so far have been somewhat helpful, I’m not sure what they can really do about it.

    • Regarding the P Street Party, they are getting worse by the week. If it were just a bunch of older gentleman hanging out and enjoying the weather, I obviously wouldn’t mind. But they are loud, crude and get agitated easily (which I’m attributing to being under the influence) – AND sitting thirty feet from the playground at Kennedy. Last week we saw several older men knock an equally aged woman flat on her back into the street. They eventually helped her up and it appeared it could have been an accident (she stuck around and continued to yell back and forth with them), but I think they were all so far gone they couldn’t really control themselves or their movements. The foot patrol that hangs around Dacha might want to take a trip around the block more often.

      • Yikes, Shaw Neighbor. I hate to say it, but I’m not at all surprised and agree it’s getting noticeably worse.

        Have you tried reaching out to anyone about this? If not, could I possibly ask you to call (the terrific) Sergeant Boteler at 240*286*2211 so we can try to get a critical mass of people raising the issue with the MPD?

    • homerule

      Call 911 every single time you see something like this. Part of how MPD allocates officers to wards is based on the number of 911 calls. That’s what they’ve told me at ANC meetings.

  • Rave: The hot, hot guy at Farragut park yesterday afternoon providing info on Enterprise’s car share program.

    Rant: The cluster on the Red Line yesterday afternoon at Metro Center following the dreaded “We have to unload this train.”
    Rant: Further delays due to people refusing to unload!

    • Bear

      It was awful, and just the start of a crappy commute yesterday – I missed my MARC train and had to metro out to PG Plaza and walk home from there (thanks, crappy MARC schedule with a 1.5 hour gap between trains). I saw what caused the malfunction – the doors had already closed, and the conductor opened them briefly, I guess there was another car with an open door. Some idiot with a giant duffle bag on his back tried to jump in in the brief opening and his bag got caught repeatedly as the conductor tried to open and close the doors. Then at Gallery Place a bunch of rowdy kids got on and almost trampled some poor woman with a baby in a stroller. A bunch of people yelled at them to watch it, but that just egged them on more, and they proceeded to harass the woman for the next several stops – making very explicit threats and being generally disgusting. They tamed it down a little when people threatened to pull the emergency button, and they got off the train when a couple of off-duty conductors got on. I felt horrible for the woman with the baby, she was clearly traumatized by the whole thing.

  • Rave: OnGuard. I couldn’t get my bike lock open so I called OnGuard. They said they’d reimburse me for a locksmith up to $100 and send me a new lock.
    Rave: My neighbor had a grinder and took the lock off for me
    Rant: I went to a workshop last night and was sitting in one of the front rows. Before the class started, the male instructor walked past me and introduced himself to the man sitting behind me and they had a brief conversation. The instructor introduced himself to another man sitting in a different row, brief conversation. He did not introduce himself to the other woman in the room. I thought that was so odd.

    • Not to defend this guy’s actions, but I have found that, in order to get some level of comfort before presenting or teaching, I need to establish some rapport with a couple of people beforehand. I’ve found myself gravitating toward people who look receptive, engaged, or, if I’m especially uncomfortable, toward people I have something in common with. While I try to then be inclusive and talk to folks near whoever I’ve introduced myself to, I don’t always have time. Having been an audience member, I know this can lead to feelings of exclusion, so I try to hit everyone in one area. I try. I don’t always succeed.

      • I’m sure it was unintended, etc. However I was looking up/at him when he walked by – that’s why it felt odd.

  • hammers

    Rave: Advice yesterday spurred me to action to get out of the dreaded G fund!!
    Rave: Great news for some great friends, one got a job, another got engaged.
    Rave: Treated myself to a nice (solo) dinner date last night, had the rabbit (I love rabbit like Charlie and Dee love human meat)
    Rave: I never have this many raves, and I could keep going.
    Rant: I like to keep my steely hardcore image up, and all these raves are cramping my style

    • I have been binging on its always sunny recently (have seen all the episodes already) but they have a lot of replay value 🙂

      • hammers

        oh yes. I constantly am re-watching a few shows, including futurama and arrested development, but I like always sunny when I am looking for something a little more blue.

    • Andie302

      Glad you got out of the G fund! I’m betting you’ll be surprised at the additional growth and how quickly it adds up.

    • The stock market has been doing really well for quite some time. That would typically by when you would want to get into the G fund, not out of it. Remember, buy low, sell high. Buy after the fall, not after the run up in price.

      • Accountering

        This is meh advice. Buy low – sell high is great in principal, but no one can time the market. Over the long, long term, putting your money into the C fund is going to hammer putting your money into the G fund.

      • Accountering

        For every contrarian out there, there are plenty of people (myself included) who think the market still hasn’t reach fair value. There is still PLENTY of room for growth and expansion of PE ratios.

      • hammers

        I think I’ll be ok. I kept 30% in “safer” funds, and I have well over what I am expected to have saved at my age, so I’m willing to be a bit riskier. Someone’s gotta be haha

  • justinbc

    Rave: SYTYCD finale last night. The clearly deserving person won, which is nice to see as I’ve disagreed with the last couple seasons’ winners (granted, it’s all fan based voting). Overall a great show with lots of awesome guest performances except for unnecessary appearances from Paula Abdul and Enrique Iglesias.
    Rave: More rain, weee! My plants are so happy this week.
    Heads Up: Next POP HH will probably be on the 25th, in Adams Morgan area this time.

  • Rave: a lot of home projects are suddenly coming together. I found a big enough light fixture for my living space, my neighbor hooked me up with a guy who is going to mount my TV for me because there’s plaster behind the drywall and it’s super hard, and my custom doors are in.
    Rant: I’m scared to notch out the mortises for the hinges on the jamb. Potential DIY failures are running through my head though.
    Rave: Bonus payout and happy hour tomorrow!
    Rave: I had a nice dinner with my sister last night at Petworth Citizen.
    Rave: getting tickets for the US Womens Soccer friendly at RFK next month.

    • Oh cool! Who are they playing?

    • Andie302

      This might have some help for the door notching: http://www.younghouselove.com/2014/09/thats-my-jamb/

      • Yes! I read that blog religiously, it is the best. I’m not taking the jamb apart, but I am borrowing some tools from a friend and I think I can get through it. The idea of permanently changing something in my home scares me because I think when I try to sell it others might not like it, but I need to remember I’m the one paying the mortgage and I’m not making any crazy changes that will tank my resale value.

        • Andie302

          I think if it’s a tasteful change then while some buyers won’t appreciate it, others may be drawn to it. I’m the same way with my place, but you know what…I really want a black bathroom and I’m totally pulling the trigger in the next year or so. (Oddly it’s the bathroom upstairs that my roommates use.) And nothing is really permanent – it can be changed (for a cost). Let us know how it goes! My hand-eye coordination isn’t great, so I would have to rely on someone else for that kind of thing. Good for you for taking it on!

          • OMG I am pining for a black bathroom too! I picked up some paint chips at Annie’s the other day thinking I would put them up and not like it, but I like it. But, first comes installing the doors, then swapping out the pedestal sink for a vanity (obvious upgrade there), then I can rethink the paint color because the vanity will be different than the existing pedestal.
            I am thinking about white wainscoting on the bottom. Would you go full black? Or break it up somehow?

          • Andie302

            For the bathroom I’m thinking of it has white wainscoting and I plan to keep it. I think all black might be too much, but I’ve seen a black dining room that didn’t have the wainscoting and it was still stunning!

  • pablo .raw

    Rave: Crossing fingers that everything will go well and I’ll have the opportunity and the right circumstances to photograph an American icon. It’s not a person. My brain can’t stop thinking on different ways to light the thing and what’s the best angle to do it.

  • Rave: Foster kittens! I’ve got three adorable siblings looking for a home. One looks like a little Lynx with crazy ear tufts, the other two are grey tabbies, though more spotted than striped. Best of all, they are getting along splendidly with the resident cats and dog!

    You can check them out here.

  • Rave: In less than 24 hours I’ll be on a plane to Vegas for my 10 year high school reunion. I get to see some of my best friends in the entire world and I cannot wait!!!
    Rant-ish: Gross Tinder messages. Only an “ish” because they are so so entertaining.

    • hammers

      That sounds really fun, enjoy! Are you from Vegas or is the reunion there (are destination reunions common)? I personally would never attend any reunion with my highschool cohorts, but I was a class A loser.

      • Thanks! I went to an international school overseas, which means everyone is so scattered now that there isn’t really a good central location to do it. So destination reunions are very common for my high school.
        People here make fun of me all the time for loving my high school friends so much but I can’t help it! 🙂

        • I’m talking to a lot of my high school friends now, 40 years later, because we are all on Facebook. Monday I had a long convo w one of my best friends from HS because she just learned her cat is a diabetic. I had a diabetic cat who lived to be 16. So it is not weird at all in my book.

        • Two of my best friends I’ve known since 6th and 8th grade. I keep in touch with other high school friends, mostly through facebook, and there are occasional get togethers with some of them. I went to high school in Maryland so getting together is easier (since many are still in the area)

        • hammers

          makes sense, sounds like you had a bonding experience overseas 🙂

  • Formerly Broken Jaw

    Rave: Talked to my dad last night and he and his wife are really getting into cooking with coconut oil that I introduced them to.

    Rant: They also put in in their coffee. I’m not a coffee drinker but that seems odd.

    • hammers

      some people put butter in their coffee, so I guess coconut oil isn’t much of a stretch.

    • I have a large costco-sized tub of coconut oil that’s been gathering dust for a while in the cupboard. Any easy suggestions? Just replace butter with coco oil?

      • I did my first 24 hour coconut oil hair mask this weekend, and it really did do wonders. Everything is super soft and smooth now. But 24 hours was a bit much, so I think I’m going to do a one-day treatment every Sunday when I’m hanging around cleaning the house. I also use coconut oil on my feet at night, and on my hands and under-eye bags- it makes a great moisturizer.

        • Agreed. I have one jar in the kitchen and one in the bathroom. You can use it to oil pans, it’s much better at high heat than many other oils.
          I moisturize with it, it gets rid of those arm bumps (KP) immediately. I do a 30 minute hair mask, wash twice after to get it all out, and condition as normal. It also works as a makeup remover.

          • I’ve been trying to get rid of my KP for YEARS and nothing has worked. I’m going to try coconut oil. Thanks for the tip!

      • Bear

        You can use it in place of any cooking oil where a mild coconut flavor would be complimentary – if you use a little of it the flavor is not overwhelming at all. I’ll put it in anything Thai/Indian/curry-like. It also works well for sauteing any number of different vegetables. I once dated someone who scrambled eggs with it, and I have to say I wasn’t a fan of that. I also sometimes use it as body lotion if I’ve run out of my normal stuff.

      • Formerly Broken Jaw

        Substitute for butter or most oils (not sure about using it for baking). I love it for stir fries and one of my favorite things in the morning is oatmeal with blueberries and coconut oil. I also sauté shrimp in it with a squirt of lime juice and a dash of soy sauce. Yum!

      • Thanks for all the advice! I’m now all sorts excited to put it to use.

  • Rave: Football is back. Go Pack!

    • Accountering

      This is definitely one of those games where I am rooting for both teams to lose. Yuck – excited to watch the game though!

    • I’m having a really difficult time right now picking a team this week for my survivor football pool. Gah!

      • dcgator

        Death, taxes, and the Patriots beating the Dolphins every year. Book it.

        • But I can’t pick the same team twice in one season and I want to save the Patriots for later. I think I’m going with the Eagles this week!

          • dcgator

            Well, if you can only pick AGAINST one team all season, that’s tough, too. But, I agree–pick against the Jags now; it’s a pretty sure bet.

            As is Chicago over Buffalo, methinks.

          • Oh, I can pick against a team however many times I want, I just can’t pick a team to win more than once.

          • Emmaleigh504

            It’s all about time zones. Pick the western time zone teams to win at home against the eastern teams. Though I usually root for the teams with the best outfits.

  • Rant: I applied for a promotion in my Fed office via the “open to all” posting rather than the “merit promotion” link. So, I didn’t get referred (veterans get preference) and, thus, don’t get a promotion, even though I’m already doing the job that they were advertising.
    Rant: I know I made a mistake, but this system is so stupid! And, my office didn’t even send out a heads up that there were these announcements and that they were posted under two headings. Ugh.
    Rave: On the little things, I’m really losing lately (broken tv, broken phone, running injury, work super sucking lately, etc). Overall, though, I’m really lucky with friends, family, and a generally great life. I keep reminding myself of that.

  • Can anyone recommend a safe bike route between DC/Crystal City that is well-lit at night? I nearly got stuck in Virginia last night because every route I tried to take led me to very dark and creepy looking area. The streets in DC aren’t bad, but I wasn’t comfortable getting back onto the MVT near the airport because the lack of lighting. Thanks!

  • Rant: Cyclists who ring bells at pedestrians on the sidewalk. Was in the central business district yesterday, walking on the sidewalk with traffic on the far right. Cyclist runs up on me and rings bell incessantly. What am I supposed to do, jump into the road so he can ride his bike? It scares me to death when cyclists ding their bells repeatedly at pedestrians — it feels like a car running up on traffic and then just honking his horn repeatedly.

    I know the logic that they’re giving a warning to pedestrians, etc., but it feels like bullying when it’s repeated, especially in an area where bikes are prohibited on sidewalks. And I wasn’t wearing headphones so I heard him approaching without the bells.

    • This is also one of my biggest pet peeves. I’m 100% pro-cycling, but can’t stand it when cyclists ride on busy sidewalks and expect pedestrians to make way for them. Especially downtown where this is illegal.

    • Accountering

      I let them know in a semi-friendly way that I am walking on the sidewalk, and their place is the street. Key word is the “semi”

  • Rant: Me and my bf’s somewhat expensive and much-loved road bikes were stolen out of his locked stoarage unit in the basement of his building in southern Columbia Heights. Someone pried off one of the metal latch pieces that were padlocked together. Not a good day.

    • this happened in my building too (souther columbia heights) i don’t trust anyone to keep my bike in the garage of our building, i keep mine in my apartment (even though it takes up a lot of space) id rather not loose it!

  • Rant – Garbage dumped again on the corner in front of my apartment. This time it’s 5 huge yard waste bags; however they do not contain yard waste, just regular kitchen garbage. I know this because rats have chewed through the bottom corners of the bags and left empty food containers, yogurt cups, napkins, and paper plates all over the sidewalk. Just lovely. I reported it to 311 and hope it gets picked up soon.
    Rave – Moving to a new place next month and won’t have to deal with lazy people dumping their garbage on the corner in front of my apartment anymore!

  • Rant: Walking past a guy asking for change, and hearing him say “Gimme a dollar girly and I’ll stay outta your house…”

    Rave: The security guard who took the report seriously

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: Mississippi cousins who have too much money and should have too much sense bringing all kinds of hillbyilly to the family. DO. NOT. APPROVE.
    Rave: One of the newly hillbilly cousins is doing very well after his kidney transplant.
    Rave: Organ donors

  • Rave: Back to DC and PoPville after a year away for school. What’s been happening? What’d I miss?!

    Rant/Rave: Grounded after a year of living abroad on two continents and making great friends and earning my Masters. Glad to be back in town, get back in a routine, and enjoy the city. Sucks to resettle, reorganize, move shit across multiple oceans.

    Rant: Job search – I’m either overqualified or under-qualified. Not much in between. Have a short-term contract option that I’m wavering on.

    Rave: DC. So many changes in just a year. Cannot wait to visit old faves and discover new. Also, peaches. And corn. And bagels. And peanut butter. YUM.

  • Rave: It is my 3 year anniversary today!
    Rave: Lots of great dinner suggestions yesterday, thanks to all who helped. I will definitely be checking some of those out another time.
    Rave: Decided on having dinner at Blue Duck Tavern tonight. I have always wanted to go there and I read yesterday that they have some of the best fries and apple pie in the country. Though it is not the reason we are going there, who can pass up on the best fries in the country just because. I am thinking and am going to have some bone marrow, crab cakes, 12 hour roasted suckling pig or the roasted muscovy duck breast. For those that have been, am I missing a must have while there?
    Rave: They have a few veggie dishes and numerous veggie sides so my wife will be plenty happy.

  • In addition to R & R posted above,
    Rave: Finished the WPost Sunday crossword in three days
    Rant: Over two weeks and six phone calls to get a prescription from my orthopedist. I was told this am the prescription had been sent on and I’d get a copy via email right away. Right away = maybe never?
    Rave: I’m firing this orthopedist. Outside of being non-responsive, he doesn’t listen.

  • Andie302

    Rave: A routine doctors appointment this morning went well and was very quick
    Rave: Since it was next to Union Station I stopped in very briefly to check out accessories for dinner en blanc tonight. I promptly procured a fancy headband.
    Rave: Half day of work today between the doctors appointment and dinner tonight
    Rant: Instead of taking time off I’m also in the office a half day tomorrow.
    Rant/Rave: Popville comment thread issues lead me to register my final email address. (Who knows what my initial email address was registered under. It was probably some version of my actual first name.) Someone else took Andie so now I get to represent my Delaware roots with the 302 area code.
    Rant: I’m still coughing from the cold last week
    Rave: but otherwise I’m feeling pretty good and got back to the gym/running the last two days.
    Rant: It’s only a little over a month until the Army 10 miler and I can only run about 4 miles max right now. This should be interesting!

    • Don’t forget that you’ll get about a 2 mile boost from the adrenaline and crowds, and another mile or two because it won’t be so bloody hot.

      • See, you’re already up to 8 miles. Nothing to it.

      • Andie302

        I’m going to need every inch of that two mile boost 🙂 I was thinking of stopping drinking during training (something I did for last October during my first 10K training) but there may need to be an exception or two in there (cough cough popville happy hour). I haven’t done the 10-miler but I did the MCM 10K and the crowds and cheering were just wonderful, not to mention the teams running for specific soldiers. I’m a veteran and get really excited about all the support.

      • I’m sorry to deflate the excitement over this, but I just don’t believe it. And as a sufferer of overuse injuries I also think it’s dangerous advice. You need to get up to a distance gradually, especially from 4 to 10. I’ve run a handful of half marathons and one marathon and although I’m certainly not an expert, this is pretty well agreed upon. Many people end their half training with a 10 mile run, so the race distance is a 30% increase. Yours would be 250% at this point.
        And even in a 5k the whole course isn’t lined with fans; you’ll be without cheering for good chunks of the race.
        If you do still decide to do it, and there is still time to increase your mileage a bit, just make sure to listen to your body and be safe.

        • Andie302

          Thanks for this! I tend to agree, but have been sick for about 10 days so I am hoping that the bounce back to get to 6 miles will be in the next week or so. 6-10 doesn’t feel so daunting. It also helps that I have no qualm about the fact that this could take me 2 hours or more. “Run” is a relative term that I use for a comfortable jog that I am easily able to sustain, even normally if I am hungover. If I hurt myself even a little I will not increase the injury by continuing to train. Fingers crossed! I’m sure I’ll either be ranting or raving on here in the near term.

          • Emmaleigh504

            Is now the time I tell you about the the guy I knew in college who had a stroke at age 20 while running after a night of partying? I have no idea if the booze/hangover had anything to do with his stroke, b/c you know, he lost the ability to speak. I don’t exercise when hungover anymore just in case.

          • Emile, I’m no doctor, but I’m betting that severe dehydration was the likely culprit.

  • SO I’m moving 2 days earlier, thankfully other than clothes, I own a minimal amount of things (I also throw out a lot of small things with great gusto). I feel bad about landfills but I feel good about not having to move junk.

    Super-rave: bff coming back from a month away on the west coast doing an internship. Other than my SO, she’s my last real friend here remotely near me and we’ve gotten a lot closer in the last couple years we both hung around the DMV.

    rave: hope to go find some freshly picked apples at the penn quarter farmer’s market today! I have an oral allergy that becomes worse as fruit ripens off the tree, so I can only have apples during the picking season (strange, I know, sucks too)

  • Rant: My cable is out.
    Rave: I think I’m in love.

  • Rant: Not feeling so hot! First time in years I have some kind of cold thing going on.
    Rave: Second job is super fun. I like it so much.
    Rave: Starbucks is open in Brookland. While I do wish there were other coffee options, beggars can’t be choosers. To finally have an option to pick up coffee on the way to work is quite the extraordinary feeling.

  • Rant: Got called a racial slur while playing basketball yesterday…Hint: I am white as white can be, and it is not traditionally something white people are called. Just flat out ignorant and unnecessary. Sorry I like to ‘talk’ when I am playing basketball but I don’t go around insulting players on a personal level..I might complain about a call or get excited when i score, but this was just ridiculous. Also adding insult to injury was the person who said this to me was not even the race in which he used in the slur.
    Rave: Things picking up on the new contract, staying busy, lots of meetings.
    Revel: Pretty excited for this date tomorrow 🙂

  • Formerly Broken Jaw

    Rant: Just saw an update from our CEO–1200 positions to be cut in FY015! Not sure how I can survive this and I’m doubt that resume highlights of “Provides regular social media updates in regards to outrageous Intern behavior” will be very helpful in finding a new job.

  • Rant: the rear wheel of my bicycle was stolen last night.
    Rave: they left the seat alone

  • Rant: Yesterday was a miserable day at work; I’ve felt disrespected and undervalued in many ways and for a long time, and it all came to a head yesterday. No explosion but I just sat and stared and the wall and thought, “I have got to get out of here!”
    Rave: Email today offering me an interview for an internal position I’ve applied for, in a different division, with much more interesting duties, real advancement possibilities, and some international travel. I think I would be a good fit for and feel I have a good shot at.
    So – this weekend will be some homework to prep, and self-psyching up for Monday 9AM interview.

  • Rant: Still really struggling with my boyfriend breaking up with me last week.
    Rave: A cute guy I met just asked me out. Way too soon, obviously, but at least it was a nice boost.
    Rant: Job hunting. Feel so unqualified for anything. Yay, lack of self confidence.
    Rant: Apartment hunting. Nearly as demoralizing as job hunting. Sent out lots of e-mails to people/group houses looking for a roommate, have heard back from almost none of them. I was offered an awesome house the same day I got broken up with – but it was a block from him and didn’t think I could handle it. Wishing I had taken it now anyway, it was a great house and the other girl had a sweet cat I could’ve cuddled at least… Sighhh.
    Rant: Just generally feeling in limbo over everything. Can I have something positive to look forward to, please?
    Rave: Awesome friends and coworkers who have been there for me, plied me with alcohol, and kept me busy.

    • I think you made a good call on not going taking that house a block away from your ex bf. That was a smart thing to do. Moving and job searching are both so stressful. Lean on your friends for support and you will get through this! And come to the next PoPville Happy Hour and I’ll buy you a drink 🙂

      • It probably would’ve been hard. It was also in Bloomingdale, so I probably would’ve run into him a lot since it’s such a small area…
        Haha thanks, I definitely plan to attend the next happy hour! Adams Morgan would be great.

    • Textdoc has a nice apt to rent

      • Unfortunately my budget is really, really low. =/ (Hence the also looking for a new job.) Ideally I need to try to keep it under $900, and think I remember his apartment was much higher than that.

  • Rant: I keep looking for a certain reader who seems to have disappeared. I hate it when readers I like disappear.

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