Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user  ianseanlivingston

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.

264 Comment

  • SFT

    Rave: I finally tried Plated and had 2 really awesome meals – duck tacos and West Bengal curried Redfish. I’ll totally make the duck tacos again on my own now that I have the recipe card. I love this service – pre-portioned ingredients sent right to my door. Yes please!!
    Rave: I found $22 in my pocket this morning.

  • justinbc

    Rave: I got to serve as a judge for a version of the Chopped show done here in DC last night. There’s such a huge difference between watching it on TV and seeing someone compete live. Some of the dishes were flops, but overall I was really impressed with what the chefs were able to put out in 30 minutes per course, not knowing what ingredients they would have to work with.
    Rant: Now I really want that Gaggenau steam oven even more after watching someone use it last night, but I’ve already been told I can’t have it by the lady of the house. Grrr.

  • Rant: I’m very worried about my housing situation. My dog has gained weight and is now over the weight limit and my building just asked about her. I only need a place to live through next summer, when I go to grad school – finding a pet-friendly, short-term lease is going to be difficult. Anyone have any ideas (~$1300 range)?

    • If your dog met the weight limit when you moved in, is it possible to get a note from your vet and get grandfathered in? I’m asking this assuming that this is a small-ish dog who gained weight, rather than a large sized breed who’s just now reaching her expected adult size.

    • justinbc

      That’s pretty crappy if they’re THAT strict about the weight limit that just a few pounds would cause you to have to find a new place. It sounds like the kind of thing they would use to justify giving out fines to people. What do they do, bring all the dogs in on the scales for a monthly weigh in?

    • I think you can fight this. The dog was under the weight limit when the lease was signed.
      Perhaps get a note from the vet saying that the dog has been having health issues and thus gained weight? Any vet would help you with this, in an effort to keep you in your home.
      In the meantime, consider switching to “lite” dog food (maybe more wet food?) and getting more exercise for your dog. It sounds like the pup needs to slim down.

      • She was just under a year and just under the limit of 25 pounds when we moved in and is now 32. She had major surgery this summer and still has limited mobility, which explains part of the weight gain.

        And yes, they’re crappy. This came a day after I complained about a botched repair job and asked for a rent abatement, and it feels like harassment to me.

    • What neighborhood? We have a basement rental coming available end of November which is dog-friendly (but you have to be okay with our (very friendly!) large breed. Maybe? e-mail whitney picard at gmail.

    • Any landlord who is making a stink about of a pet who is 5 pounds above some arbitrary limit, when the tenants and pet are otherwise no problem, is insane. The alternative is to have an empty unit (lost money) then new tenants (unknown quantity).

      • Yeah, but assuming this is a big, corporate-run building (rather than an individual landlord), they might view it as an opportunity to get an existing tenant out and get a new tenant in at a higher rent.

        • I get that, but unless they’re getting a new tenant at a MUCH higher rate, it will take a long time to make up ~$2000 of missed rent (plus cost of repainting, etc., advertising and showing the apt., paperwork related to new tenants, etc.)

          • Agreed. They sound awfully snippy about the whole thing — it seems very plausible that this is retaliation for the OP’s complaint about a botched repair job.

    • Check out the Promenade apartments in adams morgan/kalorama. Dog friendly, and they have short term leases. A friend just got a (big) studio for 6 months for 1350. http://www.lenkin.com/residential/the-promenade

    • What neighborhood and are you looking for a 1 bedroom or studio? I had issues finding a dog friendly apartment (I have a 60+ lbs Pit/Rottie mix which adds to the difficulty) but I think I still have a list of dog-friendly apartments in the Dupont/U St/Admo area from when I was looking around. The majority of places had a 30 ~ 40 lb limit. You can email sparklykittytacos at google mail.

  • GiantSquid

    Revel/Rant: Last day of work at current job. It was time to leave but I’m sad and will miss people.
    Revel: Upstate NY this weekend for family visit and cold weather coffeeneuring.
    Rant: POCKETS. Or lack of. Just bought a great pair of jeans from Lands End and the front pockets are TINY. If I put a stick of Chapstik in them, it is at severe risk of falling out. Women need pockets too!

    • Emmaleigh504

      The lack of functional pockets in women’s clothing is maddening! I lost my metro card over the weekend b/c it fell out of my jeans pocket. Jeans pockets should be big enough for a metro card!

      • I won’t buy a pair of jean unless my iPhone (with case) will fit in the pocket. I have no idea how women deal with tiny pockets. I guess that’s why you all carry purses? :-/

        • Emmaleigh504

          These were new jeans that were supposed to be the same style as my favorite jeans that are falling apart, but some how the pockets are smaller. The old jeans fit my iPhone, not really sure where I put my phone that night, but it made it home.

        • justinbc

          Yeah I had to do the jeans test before buying my Galaxy Note. I’m pretty sure there’s little to no pairs of women’s jeans it would fit in.

          • Emmaleigh504

            The other problem is a lot of the bigger phones also don’t fit in our hands. My new phone is just a tad too big for me to use it one handed and my hands aren’t particularly small. I don’t even know how my sister deals with her ginormous phone.

          • justinbc

            I’ve heard they now make finger extension things for the big phones lol … a lot of them are doing a “1 hand mode” for the screen, which sounds more dirty than probably intended.

          • 1) I don’t think my phone is any much bigger than your new one.
            2) I have enormous man hands.

          • Emmaleigh504

            (I was trying to be kind by not mentioning your man hands.)

        • skj84

          That’s what the fashion industry wants us all to believe. Despite the fact we don’t keep our purses on us at all times. I love dresses that come with pockets. I have a few that are deep enough to at least hold my phone. However we need to talk about jackets. Why, Why, Why do designers create fake pockets? I have a jacket that I opened the pocket part, it was functioning but sewn over.

          • Nicer clothing brands routinely sew pockets shut. They’re meant to be used just remove the thread. I have no idea why, but I’m sure it’s some sort of old timey marker of higher quality.

          • The pockets on jackets and pants are often basted shut so that they look neater on the shelves (and when you try them on). You’re supposed to take a seam ripper and open them up — you’ll notice it’s much easier to remove those threads than would be true if it were really intended to be sewn shut.

          • Yes, it is all for the transport and hanging. You can remove that easily.
            Also, and as it turns colder, I see people walking around with the vents on their jackets tacked. Vents are what people call slits for the most part. Vents are also tacked shut for transport and hanging purposes and HAVE to be opened or you look like an idiot.
            This issue raises my blood pressure so much more than it should. I want to run after people with my sewing scissors and chastise them while snipping the threads.

          • Jeslett: It drives me NUTS when I see people who haven’t opened the vents/slits. I’ll join you in the thread snipping!

          • gertie_wickler

            I’ve seriously considered carrying scissors around DC to cut off the vent tacks I encounter. Once I saw a girl wearing a new (obviously) coat with the vent tacked shut AND the “100% Wool” tag still on the sleeve. Crazy.

          • Emmaleigh504

            I have a wee girlie swiss army knife on my keychain, it takes all of my will power not to cut the vent tacks. I could probably do it with out them noticing…

          • Seriously! And also people who don’t remove the little label often basted on to the sleeves of wool coats. That’s not a fashion statement!!

          • I admit, I am one of the people who didn’t know about vent tacks. I was even at a job fair wearing my new suit around like that! Thankfully before any of my interviews a kind woman in the restroom told me that I should cut it, and I was so glad. I hadn’t known I was doing anything wrong!

          • I blame fast fashion. I mean, I love fast fashion, but I also blame it for people not knowing anything about their clothing anymore. I also blame it for the influx of new terms for things we already have terms for. A “midi skirt” is a tea length skirt, it’s not new.

          • I blame it on the fact that I buy most of my clothes used, meaning the tacks and pockets had already been cut for me long ago by the previous owner. I buy new clothes and I don’t know what to do with them!

          • justinbc

            It’s much worse when you see guys walking around with the Xs still sewn in at the back of their jackets. C’mon man.

          • Except it’s not much worse because that’s exactly what we’re talking about.

        • Yes, inadequately sized pockets (or a complete absence of pockets) are the reason why we carry purses.

    • I share your rant about pockets! In the past, I’ve found Lands End to be one of the more pocket-friendly sources for women’s clothes. They are one of the few companies that frequently do inside pockets on women’s coats and jackets. I’m bummed to hear about the jeans — but glad that they’re great in other respects. I’ve been thinking about trying them again after a few less than perfect-for-me pairs of Levis.

    • epric002

      i’m with you on the pockets rant. drives me nuts.

    • This drives me CRAZY. At work I find myself juggling keys and pen and notebook and whatever else all the time, and not having pockets to put the keys in means I am literally juggling.

    • Ugh, yes. I bought a pair of jeans at the beginning of summer, but didn’t wear them until recently and discovered they had fake front pockets! The horror. Hands in the pockets is perfect for hiding my awkwardness in social situations, and I was at a complete loss without pockets. I ended up sticking my hands in my back pockets which I think was maybe weird.

      • Emmaleigh504

        Hands in back pockets doesn’t seem too weird to me, but oddly reminds me of the 70s. Not sure why. Does anyone remember the 70s? Was that a thing?
        My favorite mostly invisible way of dealing with awkward situations is to wiggle my toes. Lots of awkward meetings at work, so I have really strong toes 😉

        • I laugh in awkward situations. People must think I’m a maniac.

          • Emmaleigh504

            I do too 🙂 And lets talk about laughing when it’s a tragedy or something and the “correct” response is crying or looking pensive. That’s always fun.

          • I pretty much always laugh and crack jokes at funerals. People probably think I’m an insensitive jerk/have emotional avoidance issues. They’re partially right, but whatever. I’m going to do my thing.

      • I put my hands in my back pockets all the time, even when I have front pockets. It makes me stand up straighter with more open posture and my hands aren’t awkwardly scrunched up like they are in my front pockets. Better not to put them in any pockets, of course, but given a choice I’ll always go with the back pocket.

    • I have at least one pair of pants where the pockets are so shallow that anything I put in them is likely to fall out. When the pockets are that useless, I wish they wouldn’t even put them in — at least that way, I wouldn’t be at risk of forgetting and putting something in the pocket only to have it fall out later.

      • Emmaleigh504

        I also have a problem with decorative belt loops. If they cannot function as actual belt loops (usually not spaced evenly so the belt rides up in a weird way) don’t put them on the pants.

    • Also, exercise pants/shorts. If I go for a run, I have to hold my keys? I feel like men’s exercise clothing has more pockets.

      • Athleta Be Free Knicker. Something like 4-5 pockets (a couple of which are large enough to hold an iPhone and then some), and I ran a half marathon in them without having to adjust them once. Best workout pants ever.

      • Preach! The last couple of pairs of exercise pants I bought touted their “pocket”, which turns out to be a little slot in the waistband smaller than a credit card, with no zipper or even a snap. I spend a lot of my running time wondering what the designer thought anyone would actually use this “pocket” for.

      • I recommend using a shoe pocket. It velcros around your laces. I find it much more reliable than pockets in running clothes.

  • Rave: happy hour with good girl friends.
    Suggestions: I need to get out and see some fall color this weekend. Any suggestions for decent mid-length (5-8 mi) hikes, >90 minute drive from DC? I haven’t done old rag in several years but I’m looking for a bit more solitude.

    • some of my favorites are signal knob, rip rap hollow, and spruce knob/seneca creek (further away in WV, but worth it).

      http://www.hikingupwards.com has great reviews and ranks each hike by length, difficulty, views, etc, and shows you where they are in the parks.

    • Catoctin/Cunningham Falls is also great, even on busy weekends (based on the number of cars lining the roads b/c parking lots are full) I find that if you go away from the buildings and waterfalls there aren’t many people.
      I don’t know if you really meant MORE than 90 minutes from DC, but if so head to western MD/WV. I drove through the area near Cumberland and Morgantown last weekend and it was at peak, so would be a good place to go.

    • Becks

      Dolly Sods is beautiful this time of year!

  • Rant: the driver who blocked the cycletrack at 15th and K this morning during rush hour to drop off a passenger and then slowly drove a full block in the cycletrack to turn onto I street.

    Rave: biking in washington is still awesome, especially in the fall!

    • Cycling in DC in the fall is really wonderful. As long as I stay zen-like I can enjoy it. It was tough when some guy was driving in the bike lane on New Hampshire behind me, honking and yelling at me out his window to move…
      Enjoy your rides!

  • Bear

    Rave (I think): Waiting on the first of three contractors who will be giving us estimates for renovations on our house. I’m excited/anxious – hoping the sticker shock isn’t too bad. I’d like to do the less intensive one (bathroom remodel) within the next 6 months, and the bigger one (addition on the back of the house) within the next 3 years.
    Rave: Refinancing and locked a rate that’s .625% less than what we’re paying now.

    • justinbc

      Awesome refinance news! We’re doing ours right now too, just need the appraisal to come back where we want it.

      • Bear

        Same here. I think we should be okay, at least I hope so. We have put in a lot of work (refinishing floors, repainting front porch, etc) and we need it to appraise for about $10k more than it did in April. There aren’t many comps in Riverdale, but sale prices have been up in neighboring areas so I’m hoping we’ll be fine.

      • Thanks for the advice further down on the mortgage refinance calculators. I’m using the one on Bankrate but I’m unsure what to enter for the “How much will it cost you?” entries. Do you know what a good ballpark estimate would be? It doesn’t seem like individual breakdowns of the total cost is necessary, just the bottom line, unless I’m missing something.

        • justinbc

          It really all depends on the size of your mortgage and the lender. You can go to Zillow to get some preliminary quotes which will include closing costs, for comparison (without giving out any personal financial info). Mine are being waived, but they would have been around $5,000 I believe.

      • Looking for advice. Currently Locked in to refi from into 5/1. Will knock $700 off Piti. Think it is good to go from 30 fix to 5/1?

    • Since we’re talking refinancing, I have some questions. We bought our place this summer and although we paid a “fair market value” for it, given that there was an escalation clause in our bid, I think we may be able to get a much lower appraisal now if we used different comps — as much as 100k lower, I’m thinking. I also see that we would probably qualify for a lower rate now too. Is it ever too early to refinance? Any tips on how to do it if we decide to go in that direction?

      • I’m actually wondering this as well. We purchased our place in March and put down 10% but had lender-paid MI which resulted in a bit higher rate. I think we actually got a pretty good deal, and based on some recent transactions in our neighborhood, I think our house would easily appraise so that the current loan to value is less than 80%. Wondering if it would make sense to refi now with the fairly big drop in rates + chance of not having MI built into the rate.

        • I wouldn’t count on getting rid of the pmi. Banks are stingy on appraisals for refi’s. Especially if you bought within a year.

      • In our case, we put 20% down, so PMI isn’t a concern of ours. Our main concerns are trying to have a lower total amount owed to the bank and ideally a lower interest rate, as well.

        • Bear

          I’m not sure I follow – you owe what you owe, and that won’t change unless you pay down your principal balance. I don’t think a lower appraisal would affect this. Am I missing something?

          • Probably not — I’m no expert in this. But presumably if I had a lower appraisal, I could apply for a refinanced mortgage with a lower principal balance, no?

          • To anon; the bank isn’t going to reduce the principal you owe b/c of a lower appraisal. They aren’t going to just write off that balance. I guess there are programs out there, but those are hardship programs for people that can’t make their payments.

          • Thanks, Nate — this explains a lot.

        • You owe the bank what you owe the bank regardless of what you home is worth. If your home appraised at $400k when you purchased it and you borrowed $320k you owe the bank $320k. If your home now appraises for $500k you still owe the bank $320k – if it appraised for $300k you still owe the bank $320k.

          • Exactly.
            FYI to the OP – As a corollary to this, many of the problems stemming from the real estate crisis had to do with PMI. There were a number of people who saw their loan-to-value ratio go higher than 80% because the value dropped, even though their house was not underwater. Their mortgage holder then required that they start paying PMI, which added hundreds of dollars per month in expenses in the middle of a recession. PMI pushed many people – who were right on the edge of that 80% ratio – into foreclosure. My buddy and his wife had to take over his mother-in-law’s mortgage (and move into the multi-unit property) because she couldn’t afford the PMI. She had put 20% down, but bought in early 2007 so the value plummeted. It’s just dumb bad luck that many people lost their homes. Not everyone has a son-in-law with a 6 figure income who can rescue them.
            Also consider the fact that many PMI companies had nowhere near enough reserves to pay out the insurance to mortgage holders during the Crisis and many went under. PMI is a sick joke.

      • justinbc

        You wouldn’t want your house to appraise lower. You always want it to come back as high as possible because that impacts your debt to equity ratio, which results in better rates the more positive it is.

        • But does the appraisal value affect the taxes you owe? Or is that some totally different appraisal process or something that doesn’t factor in to your total costs?

          • justinbc

            Your tax assessment and appraisal are different. In almost all cases the tax assessment will be a good bit lower than the appraised, or fair market, value.

        • I guess I’m really confused! Wouldn’t the debt/equity ratio be more in my favor if I owed less? And wouldn’t a lower appraisal result in a lower principal balance?

          • I’m confused by your comment. How would you owe less based on a refinance? A refinance might lower your monthly payments, but it’s not going to lower the principal balance of your mortgage. Quite the opposite, the mortgage usually goes up as they will typically roll closing costs into the new amount. Could be a lot more if you do like I did and refi with a cash out. As justicbc says, you want your house to appraise higher. The higher the appraisal, the more equity you have in the house, and the more favorable terms you will get on your refinance. Such as possibly dropping your PMI if your house has increased in value enough that the amount you owe is less than 80% the value of the house.

          • justinbc

            The appraisal has nothing to do with how much you owe, that’s already determined by your mortgage. Say your house is worth a million dollars (for ease of numbers) when you buy it. You put 20% down so your current ratio is 80%. Let’s say 2 years down the road you’ve managed to your principal down to a little less than 90% of the original mortgage, 700K, which would put you at a 70% ratio…but something has happened in your neighborhood and your house is now worth $1.4 million. This makes your ratio now 50%, a much more favorable stance, and can net you a much better rate when refinancing.

          • No. You have a principal balance you owe the bank. Your appraisal only pertains to the value of your house. At the refinance stage, those numbers have nothing to do with each other (unless you’re applying for a loan modification based on a new low appraisal, which you don’t indicate).
            I don’t mean to be incredulous, but do you really think the bank is going to say, “I know Anon 10:27 owes us $300,000, but their appraisal just dropped by $20,000, so we’ll knock a corresponding $20,000 of the principal balance”? That’s not how it works.

          • Bear

            Again, you owe what you owe. The only way to reduce your principal balance is to pay it. A lower appraisal only results in a higher loan to value ratio, which would result in a higher interest rate on the refinance. You don’t want this.

          • Thanks to you both. Clearly I misunderstood what refinancing can/cannot do. It sounds like it makes no sense for us at this point, especially since we get a pretty great interest rate.

          • justinbc

            Along with SF’s comment, if you’re looking to refinance check with your current lender first, or at least at some point after you get other quotes, but they’re likely able to get lender credits to cover the closing costs since they’re already servicing your mortgage.

          • Per dcd’s comment, on what grounds can someone apply for a loan modification? Is that only in cases of hardship?

          • justinbc

            @Anon10:27, there are lots of great refinance calculators out there (bankrate and zillow both have them) where you can plug in your current mortgage, interest, payments, etc and then compare to it another one, along with closing costs, and determine whether it makes sense for you to do. I always find it good to have actual hard numbers when evaluating these things, because fractions of a percent can make a difference over the life of your loan.

          • Don’t feel too bad about being confused. It is complicated. But it sounds like you might want to do some research and get a better understanding for the mortgage that you are locked into, what that means, and what obligations you are under vis a vis the amount of debt that you assumed. Barring some sort of massive government bailout, you need to pay back that full sum of money– either through your payment schedule, prepayment, or (mostly likely) through a sale that completely pays off the existing mortgage.

          • Re loan modifications, yes, they typically are in the case of hardship. Given that you put 20% down last year, it’s very unlikely that you woudl qualify. Why would the bank have any reason to reduce your principal?

          • @dcd, I had assumed (incorrectly, I assume, from the feedback I’m getting here) that I could approach a different bank, which would be happy to have my business, rather than try to reduce my principal at the bank that issued our mortgage.

            @SF, thanks. I think we understand our mortgage fairly well, and can afford our monthly payments without hardship. We did a lot of homework and mortgage “shopping” before buying our house. It’s the refinancing part that I don’t understand well. I was hoping for an even better deal than the one we have, but it sounds like that won’t happen through refinancing at this point.

          • “@dcd, I had assumed (incorrectly, I assume, from the feedback I’m getting here) that I could approach a different bank, which would be happy to have my business, rather than try to reduce my principal at the bank that issued our mortgage.”
            I’m sure they would. But your current lender still has to get paid the amount you currenty owe, right?

          • justinbc

            You may be able to get a better deal, but it would be with respect to interest rates, not principal owed.

          • Accountering

            Just to clarify, there is not a LARGE difference between a 50% LTV and 80% LTV in your interest rate. You will likely see no difference, and at best a .125% lower rate. If there is a big difference, it is because you were quoted a crappy rate on your original 80% LTV loan.

          • Accountering


            You certainly can approach another bank who would love to have your business. It is a brand new loan though, and the only way the original mortgage company (your current bank) will release the loan is if it is paid in full – so you would need to have the loan pay-off (your current principal balance) included in the new mortgage.

          • Okay, dcd, I get it — you know more than me about refinancing. This is why people ask questions.

          • justinbc

            Accountering, I was using those numbers merely as an example. It can make a substantial difference for someone who did not do a conventional mortgage up front and is trying to refinance into one. Given the popularity of FHA loans in this area I’m sure that applies to many people.

          • Accountering


            It definitely makes a difference between an old loan and a new loan, but in my experience, if you are refinancing a $500k value house, and your refinanced loan is going to be 400K (80% LTV) or $250k (50% LTV) your rate will not fluctuate much if at all. YMMV.

          • justinbc

            Yeah, it’s more to illustrate how appraisals work with respect to your debt/equity ratio (since the person asking wasn’t clear with how that worked), rather than a claim regarding gains on interest rates.

        • Yeah, I thought the deal was that you want your house to appraise as high as possible when you’re refinancing, because that way they count it as though you have more equity in it. (No?)

          • But the only way you actualize that is through selling, right?

          • A better LTV ratio can get you a (marginally) better interest rate. And you can also tap into increased equity with a home equity loan, but you have to be able to afford the payments, and there’s a risk in fully leveraging your primary residence.

          • One caveat when you refinance – they will usually reset the term of your loan. So if you are 5 years into a 30 year loan (i.e., 25 years remaining), the new loan will reset to a new 30 year term. While the lower interest rate will certainly lower the monthly payment, the payment is also lower because the term was extended. It is something to be aware of when banks quote you the new lower monthly payment. You should really only be “counting” the savings from the lower rate, not the extended term.

          • justinbc

            Correct GloverGuy, that’s why it’s beneficial to use a calculator which will project your total outlay over the life, rather than going simply by the payment amount.

    • Yay for saving money on the refinancing! We’re doing ours too – should be a good chunk of change.

  • Rave: Winter Classic tickets acquired!!!!!
    I had to hold back from all caps right there. Haha. Caps. All Caps. Which, btw, 6-2 last night, nice job boys! Holtby stole a couple from the Devils.
    Rave: new North Face Arctic Down Parka ordered. I will be so warm this winter.
    Rave: I love that 3 Stars has a homebrew store. It’s the only one in DC, which is is kind of surprising, but it’s wonderful that I don’t have go to Columbia to buy supplies. And it’s 10% off every Thursday.
    Rave: I gave my second speech at Toastmasters yesterday and it went really well. It turns out I actually like getting up and talking in front of people…as long as the stakes are low and audience is not actually related to my job/chain of command.

    • Awesome first rave! How’d you get tickets?

      • They’ve been rolling out more and more packages and they finally rolled one out that mt friends and I were interested in. I’ve found this whole process to be a bit frustrating, the seating chart came out very late in the process, you can’t as a consumer purchase the ticket package, you have to go through a rep, and you don’t get to actually choose your seat when you talk to the rep.
        I had an uncharacteristic issue too, I called my normal ticket rep about the package and left him a message, but he never called me back and the package sold out. I eventually talked to a manger and he was able to work it out because it’s not like those games were sold out. We actually ended up with better Winter Classic tickets that way, so it ended up okay.

    • Accountering

      I hestitate to be TOO optimistic, but it looks like we have a MUCH improved hockey team this year. We have out-shot the opponents 3/4 games, which probably only happened 15% of the time last year. Overall they have looked very good. We dominated SJ outside of a couple brief periods, and I always like to see how we do against the best, and was quite pleased with the performance against Boston (on the road) as well.
      Rave: We may have a hockey team here 🙂

      • Yes, I agree with most of your points, but I worry about the goalie situation. When Holtby is Holtbeast he is *incredible*. When he lets in three goals on 7 shots in the first do we really have a clear #1?

        • Accountering

          Meh, that happens to everyone at some point throughout the season. The numbers, and the more in-depth dive statistics, put him soldily in the top half of goalies over the last couple of years. Give him a tiny bit of Y/Y improvement (he is still super young) and I wouldn’t hesitate to say he is a top 10 goalie in the NHL right now.

        • From what I read, he didn’t really have much of a chance on two of those three shots. So I’m not worried, at least not yet. It sounds like they’re no longer trying to change his style and working within what suits him–and that should have a real impact on being able to succeed in the long run. I really like what I’ve read about the new goalie coach thus far.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: On my way to work I was randomly reminded of Rosa and Lawrence. Lawrence’s people found him after Katrina, but I never found out if Rosa’s people found her. I hope they did.
    Rave: None of my people were lost during Katrina.

    • justinbc

      Since you love updates on past stories, I’ve got one for you. My coworker who was previously in negotiations to purchase a Vietnamese bride seems to have resumed talks, after a few months of being quiet (relatively so, for him anyway). I heard him the other day compliment her that her English had improved, but he still seems skeptical about whether or not her intentions are genuine.

      • Emmaleigh504

        nice, cringe-worthy update 🙂

      • What would constitute “genuine intentions” for a mail order bride? Is he really expecting that she has fallen madly in love with him?

        • justinbc

          No clue. I avoid talking to him if at all possible, but he sits close enough to my office that I can’t help but overhear his phone conversations.

          • This whole scenarion reminds me of a line from the Breakfast Club:
            “That’s sorta social. Demented and sad, but social.”

        • Perhaps “genuine intentions” would be a willingness to stay married to him and cook/clean/etc. for him, rather than get a green card and get divorced?

          • justinbc

            That’s kinda how I took it. It sounds like he’s worried that she’ll try to bring over her whole family as well once she’s here.

          • LOL, of course she’s going to bring over the whole family. On his dime, too.
            He’s a moron. He just made the most expensive mistake of his life.

    • binpetworth

      Did you ever see the documentary, Mine, about pets lost during Katrina? My God, I bawled my head off watching that. I don’t know what I’d do if my kitty was taken in by strangers and I had no idea where she was.

  • Rave: The teacher’s union for the state of MD has their convention today or this weekend, so we get the day off!
    Rave: I get to spend all day catching up on grading papers/watching the Fresh Prince of Bel Air, and reading PoPville!
    Rave: Earlier this week, a parent had given me his phone number to call him if there were any issues. There’s a language barrier, so I thought there was something in particular he wanted to discuss with me. I called him last night, and he told me how he was very happy about his daughter’s education and how glad he was to have me as his daughter’s teacher
    Rant: So many papers to grade/provide feedback on/enter into the system this weekend…
    Rant: Earlier this week, my kids were pushing in line and knocked my phone off this cart that I use to travel between classrooms. It’s pretty badly shattered and since it was a low-cost phone to begin with, it’s not worth fixing.
    Question: Does anybody know of a brick-and-mortar store in the area, other than Best Buy, where I can get an unlocked Moto G?

  • Rave: Great swim last night despite packed pool. Need to find a good Spring tri to train for to keep my motivation up throughout the winter.
    Rant: Cologne-wearing lifeguards…
    Rant: Obnoxious neighbor who lets dog out in the back condo area (not allowed), yells at his dog past midnight (our bedroom windows are right there), and doesn’t clean up. I’ve talked to him about it (got nasty responses), reminded him it’s against the condo rules, but the condo board can’t do anything about it. Argh.
    Rave: To Philly this weekend for a bridal shower, visiting old friends, and a brunch to celebrate my masters degree.

  • Rant: My excitement to immediately try the OS X Yosemite upgrade was a very poor choice.
    Rave: Looking like a gorgeous fall weekend! Thinking of road tripping out towards Washington County to visit Antietam and Harper’s Ferry. Any reports on the foliage out there? I haven’t found a great map, but it looks like it should be approaching peak.

    • Apple OS upgrades on mobile devices are almost always a poor choice. My friend is an engineer for Apple and he told me to try avoiding OS upgrades since I have an iPhone 4. They are always optimized for the newest mobile devices, thus they are too resource intensive for older devices that have slower processors. This will cause older devices to slow down and basically make them unusable. It’s actually part of Apple’s business plan to get you to upgrade, even though you have a perfectly usable phone.
      I’m kinda done with Apple. The newest OS update has totally jacked up my two year old iPad 🙁

      • This drives me crazy – the unneeded updates to apps and OS that make them unusable. My iphone 4 is still in perfect condition and was capable of doing everything that I needed, but memory hungry apps are making it so slow I can barely use it. If I could have it back to its 2010 operating state I’d be delighted.

        • It’s a total Catch 22. Many apps will eventually force you to update; they’ll block you from using the older version of the app with a message along the lines of “We no longer support this version of the app. Please upgrade immediately.” Or the app will require you to upgrade the newest version of iOS.
          It’s a total f#cking scam and I’d love it if someone initiated a class action lawsuit.

    • Last weekend Cumberland and Morgantown area was at/near peak (maybe slightly before), so I think you’ll get a good show!

    • I agree with your rant. I just upgraded to Yosemite and I’m having a tough time getting into this completely “flat” design language. It seems almost cartoonish/puerile for some reason.

  • Rant: at work on a gorgeous day.
    Rave: Founding Farmers last night.

  • Rave: St. Paul and the Broken Bones at the 930 Club last night. What a great performance.

  • Rave: got clearance from doc on Tuesday that i could start riding my bicycle again. Had to have it tuned up post-crash so got it back yesterday and rode for 3 hours around town yesterday looking like someone from Newsies lol.
    Rave: awesome weekend trip to Chicago, i missed a lot of things but know I couldn’t handle the winters anymore. Their high was still lower than our lows here so I was freezing the whole time.
    Rant: realization that I have become a weak ass when it comes to weather.

    • Emmaleigh504

      maybe your weather strengths have gone the other way. You are tough as nails and can handle the heat!

      • i think it really has. i used to hate hot weather but i think this past summer (as mild as it was) was first time i didn’t mind being outside lol.

  • epric002

    rave: new CPC location is super convenient for me!
    rave: thought husband wasn’t getting home from travel til midnight last night, but he got home around 6! got to walk the dogs together and then went to the coupe for dinner. god i love their lamb burger.
    rave: he is really pleased with how his interview went. we both have a good feeling about this one. PLEASE universe let this one work out!
    rave: FRIDAY!
    rave: volunteering at WHS’ frisky business adoption event this weekend! if you’re looking for a new furry friend, all adoptions will be only $8 from 11-7 at the georgia ave shelter!

  • Rant: Cardinals are out of the playoffs.
    Rave: Finished grad school last weekend. More time to spend with the wife and kiddo during our favorite time of the year.

  • Rant: What is up with DPW’s lax enforcement of rush hour parking on 16th Street lately? Every morning lately there are unticketed and untowed cars parked 16th Street southbound in Columbia Heights and Dupont Circle and every evening going up 16th Street by Meridian Hill Park.

    Rave: Fall weather is on the way this weekend. Perfect for chai.

  • I Dont Get It

    Rant: The geographically challenged department drama queen who has done nothing but talk about Ebola for the past hour. “It’s right up the street!” Don’t you have some work to do?

    Rave: The cool and sunny weather this weekend!

    Bonus Rant: Yesterday I looked out my front door for my newspaper and it was halfway down the sidewalk so I decided it was too far away to dash out in my bath robe. Later when I left for work my paper was missing! Stolen in broad daylight! This morning again the paper was too far down the side walk for a pre-breakfast dash. When I left the house I noticed the plastic wrapped newspaper had been moved and was in the ivy next to the sidewalk. When I picked it up I noticed yesterday’s paper under it hidden in the ivy. One end of each of the plastic bags appeared to have been chewed. Wait, isn’t this where there were once some rat holes whose occupants I had eradicated a couple of years ago? OMG the rats are back and trying to drag my newspapers into their residence! Needless to say I threw them away, yuck!

  • Rave(?): I went to pilates at my gym last night. I hurt everywhere (in a good way), but it is definitely a reminder that I”m out of shape.
    Rave: Friday! So grateful that the weekend is almost upon us.
    Rave: Pay day.

  • hispanicandproud

    Rave: Friday off means getting lots of stuff done that I never do during the week then happy hour tonight!

    Rave: Last group run tomorrow morning then White House event with best bud!

    • hispanicandproud

      Rave: Just remembered I had two checks that I hadn’t deposited! Today is a fine day.

      • Your rave has made me remember that I had some checks to deposit that I meant to bring to the office today but completely forgot about.
        Compensatory rave: I can probably deposit them tomorrow at my other credit union.

  • Rant: favorite spin teacher has cancer, I’m terrified for her. Doing my best to try to reach out to contacts to make sure she gets good care. Gym was pretty good about sharing her info so we could donate towards her medical bills.
    Rant 2: Good friend has to put her cat down today. I matched them when another friend couldn’t keep her. Even though it’s time it’s so hard.
    Rave: my health, lots of good friends and doing my best to stay optimistic. A sunny day helps too.

  • Rave: Hosting party tonight
    Rant: Gonna be feeling the pain tomorrow!

  • Rave: After being laid off (without notice) three weeks ago, I’m temping this week. It’s nice to be around people, feel productive, and make some money while I decide what I want to do next.
    Rant: Close friend struggling with mental health issues. She’s taking big steps and seeking hospitalization, and while I’m glad she’s seeking that care, I’m so worried for her.
    Rave: Sunny Friday and celebrating a wedding and a new baby this weekend! Life moves forward, whether or not we’re ready for it.

  • Rave – its Friday!
    Rave – picking up new (to me) furniture from Miss Pixies this weekend
    Rant – have to pack and paint for move
    Rave – Moving to bigger place!

  • skj84

    Rave/Rant: I’m supposed to start training on Monday. I’m just so afraid this job will somehow fall through. I’ve been through so much disappointment with my job hunt. I’m not letting myself get excited about this opportunity. I haven’t even told that many people about it, just my family and best friend.

    Rant: Guy who thinks 1:00am is an appropriate time to start a conversation on messenger. He’s done this twice this week. First time I ignored him, second time I told him I was going to bed and couldn’t talk. Just because I’m posting on Facebook at that time doesn’t mean I want to talk! I mean the only exception would be family, close friends or significant other, none of which this guy are. People need to learn boundaries!

    • On the 1 a.m. messenger conversation… I’ve had the same thing happen to me and been a little annoyed, but if you’re posting on Facebook, you can’t really blame the other party for thinking that you might be up for IMing as well.
      Is there a setting whereby you can be logged into Facebook but invisible for messaging purposes? (I’m not on it often enough to have bothered investigating.) Or was he messaging you by some medium other than Facebook messaging?

      • I’m with textdoc on this. He saw you on Facebook and thought you were available for chatting. He’ll learn the boundary when you set it for him (hopefully, anyway). You can also turn off your chat availability.

      • skj84

        It was through facebook. While I group chat with some of my close friends, it would never occur to me to chat a peripheral friend at that time of night. Unless it was something urgent. I probably should just set my chat to invisible.

  • Rave: Went to last night’s ANC 6E02 meeting about the redevelopment of the 1500 block of 7th St NW. Was really excited to meet neighbors and learn that Ivy & Coney is planning to expand to include a full restaurant with a roof deck, ideally by the end of the year. The representative from Valor Development also had very interesting plans for the south end of the block, which wraps around to Marion St. (Aka the home of the nonstop party).
    Big rant: That part of the block can’t be redeveloped until the city holds an RFP for the middle parcel on the corner of 7th and P and it sounds like the city will drag its feet on the RFP until next year because of the election. Everyone in the room seemed pretty angry about this, but what can we do?
    Small rant: It seemed pretty clear that the ANC commissioner held the meeting as his single effort to get re-elected to his post. I didn’t leave the meeting thinking I should vote for him, but don’t know much about the alternatives yet.
    Rave: My From the Farmer delivery this week has amazing kuri squash, arugula, apples and salad mix. My refrigerator and my stomach are very happy right now.

    • Speaking of 7th and P, this was just on our neighborhood listserv: “Someone was trying to sell a stolen bike near Marion and P st last night. Since no one bought it and it had a flat tire, they decided to ditch it by the bus stop. I put it in my house for safekeeping. It’s an older 10-speed Fushiki, but it seems like it’s in good condition so I assume that someone wants it back. If you know whose it is please have them contact me.” email shawess at gmail dot com if you want the OP’s contact information.

    • tonyr

      I was the one who arrived late and missed most of the presentations. I would have said Hello if I’d known you were there.

      • ! I don’t remember you coming in late. I was sitting front and center in a multicolored dress and my husband also came in very late and sat behind me. If that rings a bell and if you see me in the neighborhood, feel free to say hello then. I love meeting neighbors!

  • Rave: It’s a London Grammer kind of morning.
    RANT: Their show in November at 930 Club is sold out 🙁

  • Ally

    Rave: T minus 5 hours until the start of a 3-day weekend.
    Rave: My girl friend is set to deliver her first child next month and I am viewing this as a very, very good excuse to go buy lots of little shoes.
    Rave: Bacon-loving boyfriend is cooking me vegetarian enchiladas tonight and even got some of the fake ground beef to throw in. I’m sure he’s dying a bit on the inside, as do most bacon-loving men — just a little — who ended up with a vegetarian. Will make him something porky soon to compensate.

  • Andie302

    Rave: Veggies roasting for lunch soup
    Rave: I’m submitting picture of my pup momentarily. I caught her sunning herself and snapped a cute picture. Keep an eye out for Mocha in the next couple weeks. It’ll be her debut.
    Rant: A property went under contract before we could get our offer together.
    Rave: There will be something else that works…now we wait and look.
    Rave: Friday! Have a great weekend everyone!

  • Rave: Slammin’ haircut at Parlour this morning. Thank you popladies for your suggestions!

  • Any Popville ladies have recommendations for cute, super warm winter boots? My sister is trying to get me to buy some Uggs and though I believe her that they are like walking on pillows, something in my brain won’t let me put a pair on my feet.

    • Better shearling lined boots would be the fully shearling lined LL Bean boots. Ugg boots start to look nasty pretty fast and getting them cleaned isn’t cheap.

    • justinbc

      I’m not a lady, but I highly recommend Sorel boots.

      • Sorels are really heavy, way warmer than you need here unless you spend a lot of time standing and not walking. My feet are always cold, I wear socks ALL THE TIME (like right now, at my desk, I have taken off my dress shoes and am wearing fleece socks!), and even I need Sorels only if I am going to be standing around outside for hours at a time. And there is only one Sorel model that would maybe qualify as cute (if you’re wearing beer goggles), and none that would be super cute.
        I have some Merrells and Keens that are super warm (especially with slightly thicker socks, which you can do when you’re wearing boots!) but a couple of weeks ago people had other suggestions for lots of brands of cute winter boots.

        • justinbc

          She asked for super warm, not super cute. Sorel is certainly super warm. Cute, as it relates to boots, is simply a woman thing to consider. I for one do not care what your boots look like, and probably won’t even notice them unless there’s something nice attached to them. (this could be said for most clothing garments though)

      • +1 on the caution w/Sorels. I bought a pair because I thought they were practical, but find them really impractical because they’re so heavy and hot. The only time I would realistically wear them is in another snowmageddon situation or if I took a trip someplace super snowy.

        Textdoc, do you know where our recent conversation about cute winter boots is? 🙂

    • Fwiw, I had some winter Uggs – with a low heel. They were very warm and very comfortable – and I wrecked my feet because they were so comfortable that I didn’t realize that they actually had no arch support.

  • Rave: Won a free happy hour for tonight. Free booze? Don’t mind if I do!
    Rant: I woke up with a sore throat. Nooooo!

  • Rave: Beautiful weekend ahead.
    Advice: Looking to buy a bike. I will be an extremely casual rider (no races, no commuting… just something for riding over to the farmers market or taking a leisurely Sunday morning tour about town). I definitely like the handle bars up higher than a lot of bikes seem to have. Any suggestions about what to look for? Thanks!

    • The downtown location of Bike and Roll does end of the season sales. This is how I bought my bike and I consider myself an extremely casual rider. You could spend the same amount at Target or Walmart, but I think that the bikes at Bike and Roll are of better quality and have been well maintained. Check out http://www.bikeandrolldc.com/News-Events/bike-and-roll-dc-s-fleet-sale-11-9-14 — or go to “fleet sale” on Bike and Roll’s website if link won’t work.

      Happy purchasing and riding!!

      • Bikes bought at Target, K-mart, etc. are not necessarily the way to go. While you may think you’re saving money, you cannot trust that they will be assembled correctly. Same goes for used bikes. You WILL need to get it tuned up and checked out by a professional if you were to let the store assemble it, so there’s another ~$100 or so. Bike stores also (usually, from my experience) offer free tune-ups and warranties, and they are experts- whereas once you buy a bike from Target, you’re on your own. I did lots of research when trying to find a bike that I loved and could afford (no easy feat!). I called every bike store in DC and got the same advice. Good luck and happy riding!

      • Formerly Broken Jaw

        Brooklyn Bikes

    • There’s a guy at the Georgetown Flea Market that sells refurbished bikes of all kinds and styles. I would go chat with him and check out what he has. My major advice as someone who rides occasionally but not a lot is to avoid any mountain bike types. They are so heavy that it’s a huge pain. I have hybrid that I bought at City Bikes -it was the cheapest model they had–and I’ve had it for almost 10 years. It was a good investment.

  • Rant – Crazy, toxic extended family member continues to wreck financial and emotional havoc in my life.
    Rave – It’s sunny and I have plans to go out for music and dancing with friends tonight.

  • Revel: I was enjoying Red Derby’s rooftop last week when my husband and I spotted an opposum on the second floor of a building across the street. The opposum was specifically going to each second floor window to try to get in. Wasn’t successful. POSSUMS. I’m not sure there is a difference beween possums and opossums.

    • The technical difference is that possums are in Australia and opossums are in the Americas. But they’re mostly called possums here in the US (I’ve seen a dialect map that maps the distro of possum vs opossum, but can’t find it now).

  • Rave: Bikeyface came out with a mini comic-book. Her illustrations are great. I’m really looking forward to flipping through this book when it comes in. Anybody interested in fun illustrations about being a bike commuter in the city should check her material out at bikeyface . com

  • The Post just endorsed Bowser for mayor. Disappointing but not surprising.

  • Rant: I know things I do not want to know. It’s making me uneasy.
    Rave: Fall weather is on the way.

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