Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user  Jordan Barab

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.

270 Comment

  • SFT

    Rave: Cuba released Alan Gross. That’s huge!!
    Rave: I was in the kitchen at work making coffee and a coworker told me that she loves my outfits and that I always look really nice. It totally made my day.
    Rave: Our building served breakfast in the lobby this morning. Free work breakfast!!!

  • Rant: I have a severe case of Holidayitis. I don’t want to do any work– I just want to go home, spend time with my family, and drink tons of wine while dancing to Lady Gaga with my Mom.
    Rave: I love my family, and I’m so lucky that my husband loves them, too.
    Rave: Put my Amazon Prime membership to good use this morning–donated items on the Washington Humane Society’s Amazon Wish List 🙂 Thanks for everything you do, WHS!

  • Rant: Normally I can’t complain about my commute but today the traffic on Rock Creek Church Rd was just not fun. I guess they blocked off Harewood just west of North Capitol and then directed all that traffic down towards that messed up intersection with Allison and Hawaii and N.Capitol so nothing was moving. Anyone know if this will be the case tomorrow?
    Rave: As I said, my commute is usually nice to me.

  • Rave: So excited about the Christmas gifts I bought for family and friends that I cannot wait to give them!

    Rant: Despite a few interesting job opportunities, I’m feeling so demotivated from three months of job searching and unemployment and no interviews.

    Rave: Gilmore Girls and excellent books are great distractions from my lack of employment.

    • Totally forgot that I can now watch all of Gilmore Girls on the roku! I’ll need to remember that… though I just started watching Good Wife & may have to get through that series before returning to Gilmore Girls.

  • justinbc

    Rave: Finally finished the Venetian plaster application in the master bedroom this weekend, what a doozy. I had some spare time on Sunday so I did the top contrasting color too, and since it was nice both days I actually got to air the room out unlike the previous weekend.
    Rant: Still have to do the trim work and then a strip of wallpaper across the room to tie it all together. Those should both be minor though compared to the plaster.
    Question: Anyone have experience doing wallpaper and willing to be hired out for an hour or two? I’ve never done it, and I’m hesitant to just get a friend to help me who’s also never done it, and it’s really not enough of an application to hire someone professional (literally just running one strip around the middle of a 20 x 30 bedroom).

  • Someone mentioned in another thread somewhere that “many” people have coffee machines in their bedrooms. So, poll: Do you have, or do you know anyone who has, a coffee machine in their bedroom?

    • SFT

      No way, that just seems like a fire hazard. I also don’t want my clothes smelling like coffee! I just watched an old episode of Shark Tank and there was a guy who had an alarm clock that cooked bacon – he thought that everyone would like to wake up to the smell of bacon. So gross in your bedroom!

      • palisades

        Oh that’s just gross. That would get old so fast.

      • That was my first thought, too: the smell. Not the fresh coffee smell, but the stale coffee smell. Maybe these are people who change their sheets (or have their maid change their sheets) every day? The idea of putting my head on a pillow that smells of ANY kind of edible makes me gag.
        Also, I’m betting that a coffee maker in a place other than the kitchen doesn’t get cleaned very often. Unless, again, the staff is doing it. And again, gag.

        • SFT

          Yeah, I don’t even want to talk about how long I go in between washing my sheets. And now that we have a toddler, sheet washing is even farther down on my to-do list. I couldn’t imagine my bedroom smelling like coffee. Don’t judge me, but I’ve been known to rub a dryer sheet over my sheets to make them smell good 🙂

    • I read that comment by (who else?) justinbc with a raised eyebrow (because I only have one.)
      I do not have a coffee machine in my bedroom nor have I ever met anyone that does (to my knowledge).

      • justinbc

        Just to clarify, I don’t actually have one in the bedroom myself. I don’t really like coffee enough to ever justify that level of necessity. I do however read lots of home design blogs and magazines and see it quite frequently. Is it a bit lavish? Possibly, but not quite as impractical as many are making it out to be.

        • Yeah, I didn’t assume you had one, it just did not surprise me that it was you who mentioned it. I don’t read design blogs or magazines, but I’m guessing they feature more towards “innovative” or “interesting” than towards “what pretty much everyone does.”

    • My SIL has one in her master bath, does that count?

    • I don’t. But I have my machine set on a timer so it starts about 10 minutes before my alarm so I wake up to the smell of fresh brewed coffee. I hate getting up so the reward of coffee once I do helps get me out of bed in the morning.

    • Emmaleigh504

      My great aunt did. It was set to start making coffee before she woke up so she could have coffee in bed. I keep meaning to do that. She had a percolator.

    • binpetworth

      I have never heard of this. I guess it makes sense, though, for those who want coffee in bed and don’t have pool boys to deliver it to them.

    • Blithe

      Nope. But I don’t drink coffee. (yet) And I don’t know anyone who has one. But I do fondly remember life in a dorm room when Cokes where only an arms-length away. I agree with SFT — as wonderful as coffee can smell, I wouldn’t want that in my bedroom.

    • i have done this in a few places i’ve lived.
      it was nice.

    • Unless you’re a black coffee drinker, don’t you also need a mini fridge for the milk? If I wanted coffee in my bedroom this would be my problem, but I don’t need to go to far to my kitchen to make coffee anyway. Thank you “starter” condo!

    • I have one in my bedroom / dressing room, but I also grew up in a house where my mom had coffee ready every morning so I’m used to waking up to it. I’m surprised so many people find this weird. Why does it matter where I plug my coffee machine into the wall?

      • justinbc

        Yeah, the ones that I typically see are in a dressing room / sitting room that’s either within the bedroom or directly adjacent. It’s not plugged in right next to your bed or anything, that would indeed seem foolish.

    • I had one in my dorm in college. And my boyfriend has a coffee maker in his studio apartment – on the other side of the room, in the kitchen area. I don’t really count that.
      Definitely not one for this now, although the coffee maker alarm clock did excite me momentarily, until I realized I don’t need it and I would be terrified to hit the snooze button as, knowing me, I would spill coffee all over my bed. And then I would definitely have to change my sheets, wash my comforter, and my mattress would permanently smell like coffee. Better to start my day the right way and in the kitchen or on my couch with my coffee.

    • skj84

      I don’t, but I’ve considered it. I have a Mr Coffee multipot so it just seems like a fire hazard. Not to mention messy. However If I had a single serve coffee maker I probably would keep it in my room. Less mess. My brothers in laws actually have Kurigs set in all the guest rooms.

  • Rave: Got a raise!
    Rant: While I’m thankful for any kind of pay bump, it’s a 1.5% raise. Got the annual “dying industry” spiel, which is always great for morale… It’s true, I’m in a declining industry but I see the massive amounts of money we spend in areas we can easily cut back on. $100,000 for a seat on the press charter? Sure, let’s send 3 people. Need something covered in Iowa? Cool, let’s fly someone in from our Beijing bureau. DC bureau has leftover budget? Let’s renovate the office and upgrade all the furniture that no one uses every year. Pay our employees more? It’s a dying industry, we can’t afford it.
    Rave?/Rant: No one else got a raise (coworkers were complaining) so I will just keep my mouth shut IRL and be happy.
    Rant: ASOS customer service. Terrible.

    • palisades

      Can’t say I’ve ever dealt with ASOS customer service directly, but I have nothing but positive things to say about their shipping/returns. Free and fast and easy.

      • My DW is addicted to ASOS (thanks god they don’t have a b&m store here) and I believe she’s returned a lot of items with no problems. She’s also happy the shipping is now domestic.

      • I’ve liked them in the past but have never had to deal with customer service before this. I don’t think they were prepared for the holiday rush and are screwing up everyone’s orders, but they only do customer service online so it’s impossible to get a response from anyone unless you comment publicly on their Facebook page. And even then, it’s just a generic response that they’re working on it.

        • Oh man, i had an epic ASOS fail 2 years ago where i ordered my holiday dress for a huge party, paid extra shipping, and it didn’t come on time!!! However, they sent me another one, both packages eventually came, I returned one of them, and they still refunded me all my money as a “we are sorry” gift.

          • That’s sort of what I’m dealing with. I ordered a dress for a holiday party that I’m reaaaallyyy looking forward to. My package came but they sent me the wrong dress so I’ve been trying to get them to send me the correct item in time so I can wear it on Saturday! But no response. Their FB page and Twitter feed tell me I’m not the only one!

    • Ugh, am I reading correctly that you’re a journalist? Such a tough field. My wife shifted to a newsletter a number of years ago and it’s done better on the stability & salary front than newspapers seem to have. But she’s also considering shifting into something else since the pay/flexibility aren’t ideal. The GAO has an interesting program that might be a good fit for those with journalist training since they do lots of investigative research. But yeah, we need good journalists–it’s just unfortunate that it’s hard to find a news model that makes money.

      • Yep, journalist is correct. It really is tough. My office building houses a lot of media outlets and so many offices have closed down in the past couple of years and are just sitting empty now. It’s really depressing.
        I’ll look into that GAO program. Thanks!

        • I think they usually hire for it in March. I don’t remember what it’s called, but it’s a program that rotates new people through various sections of the agency over the course of 2-3 years and then you get your permanent placement at the end of that program.

          • That sounds like the Presidential Management Fellows program — I wonder if that’s how GAO does theirs, or if that program of theirs is just similar (as far as rotations, etc.) to the PMF program.

      • News serves the public interest, and therefore they should be operating on the nonprofit model. This would also solve the problem that they seem to be beholden to their advertisers nowadays. The only news outlet I know of that is nonprofit currently is Mother Jones.

    • I hear ya. For the past 5 years my raises have averaged about 0.6%/year. Meanwhile they keep creating high level positions with outrageous salaries. It’s one thing to not get a raise when times are lean, it’s another thing entirely when you can see all the ways your raise is being wasted.

    • Emmaleigh504

      I’m curious what my company will say about small raises this year, assuming I get one. In the past it’s been that the economy is crap, but it’s been getting better, so I look forward to their creativity.
      Congratulations on the raise!

    • Raises are so bizarre. My organization just gives 2% to everyone (and everyone always gets the same). So no matter if you do really well or just get by (or never even show up to work), you still get the same raise as our president.

  • Rant: Don’t feel like I slept well, not sure why
    Rant: Ugh, need to get my butt back in gear and go for a run and/or to a yoga class! That’s my goal for the rest of the week.
    Rave: Kiddo slept well yesterday, has so far kept down the little bit she ate yesterday and woke up after 13 hours fever-free this morning. Yay! Anticipating a fever relapse this afternoon, perhaps, but we’ll see. But it sounds like she’s chipper and just a little more tired than usual, so that sounds like progress to me. Yesterday at this time, she was asleep on the couch with the cat in front of pbs kids.
    Rave: Really thrilled my kid is feeling better 🙂 And it’s fun to celebrate Hanukkah with her–she loves the candles.

  • Rant: I was so tired by the end of the 20 round shootout to end the Caps game that I didn’t watch the Road to the Winter Classic and didn’t really care that they lost after all that. The TV was getting blurry somewhere near round 5. Locker was so funny, he forgot how many players are on an NHL bench. It was hilarious when he thought Trotz skipped Backstrom and saved him for the end. No Locker, they had to start over. I was waiting for a Mike Knuble vs the Pens moment, where a first time shootout player inexplicably comes off the bench and wins it for the Caps. It didn’t happen, but I miss that guy and that was a great birthday gift.
    Rave: Thanks for the kind thoughts yesterday everyone! It’s much appreciated.
    Rave: My sister might come to spin class with me tonight!

    • RAnt: I’m taking the next two weeks off, but between Christmas and the Winter Classic a quick beach trip just isn’t going to work out. Has anyone been to Bliss Spa at the W? What did you like/not like? I think I’m going there for a massage, mani-pedi. Maybe I should stay the night.

      • I haven’t, but I do occasionally (a few times/year) get a massage at Spa Room on Wisconsin Ave. I particularly like the owner, Mary.

      • I went to Bliss once for a massage after receiving a gift card from a friend. This was sometime within the last 5 years. I had a massage. It was a good massage but don’t think it was anything special.

      • Andie302

        If you don’t mind a short drive you could check out Berkeley Springs. They have several great spas and cute bed and breakfasts. There might even be outlets that you could make a return to on the way there or back!

        • +1 for Berkeley Springs. Cute town and far enough away to feel like a vacation without having to do an epic road trip.

      • I go to the Bliss spa for waxing and such and it is good, but I wouldn’t consider it a relaxing, restorative kind of spa. The waiting room is small and doesn’t have all the large sauna/steam accoutrements that I think of for a restorative post-break up spa experience. I have also stayed at that W and it is a little too scene-y for me. I really like the Kimpton chain for a stay cation (though no spas in them in DC that I can think of).

        To really have the spa+staycation in the city, I say Mandarin Oriental all the way.

  • Pablo Raw

    Rave: Disregard my rant of 3 or 4 days ago about losing my earmuffs, they have been found alive and well.
    Rant: Back to the arachnid infested basement

  • Rave: Google Express is coming to DC!

    Rant: MPD 4D SUVs nearly hitting pedestrians in crosswalks.

    • I just want Google Fiber!!! The day I can rid myself of Comcast will be a good day.

      • +10000
        Gimme Google Fiber. Sadly, I doubt we will get it due to regulatory hurdles in DC and Verizon winning large federal contracts. Hell, at this point I would gladly take lowly RCN.
        Does anyone have Verizon FiOS in Columbia Heights? I’m in a row house, so I think we could switch from Comcast to FiOS. Despite a recent speed upgrade, our Comcast service sucks monkey balls – random speed throttling, god awful Kafka’esque customer service, and trying to charge us for services never provided. I’m ready to firebomb that company.

        • Let me start by saying I’m not a tech person. But after being a Comcast customer for 3 years I had had enough with them. I am now 3 years into being a Fios customer. Everyone raves and raves about Fios, but I wonder if it’s just because we no longer deal with sh**ty customer service from Comcast? Fios is more expensive. I don’t know that the tv and internet are any better or faster than they were with Comcast. I’m not complaining. But I just don’t know that Fios is all its cracked up to be. Again….NOT a tech person…so maybe that is why I feel this way!

        • Not in Columbia Heights, but close by in Petworth, and I have FiOS. It has been great – they even came out on a Sunday to install it for us when we bought our house, without us even asking. They just offered a Sunday appointment. Everytime they have tried to raise our bill to keep the same services, my husband just calls and they are able to bring it back down with specials. Having previously been a harangued and reluctant Comcast customer, I have really loved our switch to FiOS.

          • +1 We have FiOS in Petworth as well. We first had Comcast and then switched to RCN. Both were terrible and the internet connection would be so slow when streaming and drop completely at random moments. I love FiOS, super fast for streaming. I used to have problems streaming to Chromecast on my TV but I have not yet with FiOS. It also is about $20 cheaper than we were paying with RCN.

  • Rave/rant: I made caramels for the first time last night. They were still liquid-y when I went to bed. I’m really hoping they set overnight. If not, caramel sauce instead of caramel candies as holiday gifts??
    Rave: Holiday cards are done; shopping is done. The only things left on the holiday preparation lists are wrapping caramels and wrapping gifts. At least those things can be done while sitting in front of the tv.
    Rave: Four more work days left in 2014. I can make it.

    • I had the same thing happen over the weekend! I made one batch of bourbon sea salt caramels – YUM! They set perfectly. But I made two batches of mexican chocolate chili caramels and neither batch has set. I made the second batch after realizing I did not heat the first batch to a high enough temp. Second batch I heated to 250-255. A day later I was able to pour from pan into jar. Caramels are not supposed to pour! I was thinking of giving this away in smaller jars but I don’t know about the whole bottling / sanitizing process. Would I need to heat the mixture back up to whatever-degrees? Sanitize jars (I would do that anyway)? Handle this like I’m canning jelly or something? So I’m thinking people will be getting fudge and bourbon caramels and that my original plan of 2 types of fudge and 2 types of caramel was overly ambitious….and that I’ll have to think of a creative use for nearly 4 cups of delicious gooey spicy chocolatey caramel sauce…

      • Allison

        I bet that sauce would be great over cheesecake.

      • I think if you sanitize the jars and heat the sauce back up before pouring into jars it would be a great gift. And although pretty obvious, they should keep the sauce refrigerated. Over ice cream would be my first use of the sauce, or spooned over cake/brownies/etc. I’d love this as a gift!

  • Rant: Guy I have been dating for 4 months broke up with me last night…three days before the ol gift exchange.
    That’s all.

  • Revel: Swearing in day today! Woot!
    Rave: 2014 ending on a pretty good note.
    Rave/Rant: Now that mom has her license, I can play Ms. Daisy…she’s never driven so far on the highway. Save me!
    Rant/Rave: Lots of gym time is kicking my butt, but clothes are getting looser and i’m sleepy well, so I probably shouldn’t complain.

    • It’s an awesome feeling when you get to complain about your clothes getting too big, isnt’ it? Keep up the good work!

    • Please let us know how the highway driving goes! I have yet to drive on a highway and need some inspiration to get out there… :-/

  • palisades

    Rave: Got Jessie Ware tickets. Also doubling as one of my gifts for my girlfriend. Beyond excited!

  • rant: nightmare about accidentally letting my dog drown. I don’t have a dog, but my bf and I really want to get one next year. He admitted he also has fears about accidentally letting the dog die too so maybe its more of a general anxiety type thing.
    rave: went to Bidwell last night at Union Market, they have a lovely staff there and the apple cobbler is divine.
    rave: dry cleaned pants are so clean!

  • Rave: Holy crap! Just found out my wife is pregnant after suspecting for a few weeks. Good think I have nine months to come to terms with being a mother.

    Rant: How on earth am I going to keep it a secret? I’ve known (officially) for all of five minutes and want to run and tell everyone! Good thing I do so here. You’ll keep it mum, won’t you PopVille?

  • Blithe

    Rave: Back to dreaming in music — the Sisyphean Snowballs are Gone! IDGI’s update must have done the trick. Thanks IDGI! 🙂
    Rave: Found a great present at less than half the sticker price thanks to an unexpected coupon on Amazon. Yay!
    Rave: In the spirit of “three for them, one for me” I ordered a couple of pieces of cast iron cookware. I don’t know why, but this makes me feel like a real grownup.
    Rant: So I”ll have to season the cookware, and no one that I know has done this in about 5 decades. Hmm. I think it might be the responsibility of repeated maintenance that I’m associating with adulthood.
    Rant: After trips to two Verizon stores and one Apple store, I haven’t been able to get the pictures off of my old Krzr phone because something keeps disconnecting it during the sync. I’m very bummed about this, since I have a couple of really special pictures on there. I’m hoping that it hangs in there until I can figure out a solution. I’m having wincingly nostalgic longings for a Kodak instamatic, or a brownie…. technology that doesn’t Eat things.

    • “Three for them, one for me”? Whatever happened to “Three for me, one for them”? 😉

    • +1 on your cookware rave I finally invested in nice cookware because of Black Friday. I’m not much of a chef, but I made pancakes for the first time.

      For the rant: Can you send the photos to someone via text and get them to send the photo back to you? I think you should be able to save it to your phone from there.

      • Blithe

        Nope. Or at least, I don’t think so. The old phone no longer has service, and the reason I got the new one was because the old one kept disconnecting so that I couldn’t send texts. Thanks for the suggestion though!

    • Pablo Raw

      Are you sure your phone doesn’t have a memory mini-card slot?

      • Blithe

        It does have a memory mini-card slot. I know this, only because two of people that helped me asked and looked. Neither said why this was important. And both seemed to think it was fatal that they couldn’t find a cable that would fit between my phone’s “ancient” type of charging slot and a usb port.
        If you’re feeling Very Patient — what with all the spiders and all — could you tell me how having a “memory mini-card slot” will help? If bribes will be help, I’ll tell you when the prisms — reportedly — do the rainbows!

        • Can you move the memory card from the Krazr to a phone you can retrieve the images from? Or put a memory card into the slot if that isn’t already being used by the phone, transfer the images, then move the card back to another device?
          But oh, did film cameras eat images! Or not take them in the first palce (but give you no indication of not taking them).

        • “[B]oth seemed to think it was fatal that they couldn’t find a cable that would fit between my phone’s ‘ancient’ type of charging slot and a usb port.”
          Can you check on Amazon to see if such a cable is available? I have a similarly ancient (or perhaps even more ancient) phone and I remember noticing that Amazon had a cable that would let me download photos from my phone. (The default setting was that there was no way to transfer the photos other than e-mailing them at 25 cents a pop, or sending them as MMSes.)

        • Not sure if my last comment posted. I recently went through the process of recovering pics from a mini-SD card. So I will gladly walk you through the process. Step 1 would be to buy a USB that has a mini-SD card reader. I bought one at Best Buy for less than $10. If your pics aren’t saving to the sd card, though, there might be a few extra necessary steps

        • Blithe

          Thanks Anonther, textdoc, and KW for your suggestions and advice!!! I’m glad to know that there are some options. I’ll check Best Buy and Radio Shack out this week — with Amazon as a backup.

    • Congrats on your new cookware – I think (most) everything tastes better when cooked in a cast iron pot/skillet. Although I don’t have a particular website to recommend, seasoning them is easy.
      Once they are seasoned, maintenance isn’t complicated. Wipe out when finished, avoid using soap, make sure the pot is thoroughly dry before you put it away (I’ll heat it on the stove if I’m in a rush) and it helps to give it a light rub with vegetable oil.

    • SFT

      I have my grandma’s cast iron skillet from the 30’s and it’s freaking amazing! She used to keep a jar of bacon grease on the counter and rub it every evening with a little bit of the grease and put a paper towel over it (I guess to keep the bugs off?). So I recommend bacon grease 🙂

  • Rant: had to enter my rental home for some maintenance and the bathroom shower was yuck! Do people not clean/scrub their showers/tubs on a regular basis?
    Rave: last week of work for the year.

    • I’ve found from roommates and tenants the answer is a big NO! For some reason, only a few of us can see the grout changing colors, hair on the walls, etc I guess.

      • I wear glasses so I can’t really see anything when I’m in the shower (certainly not a hair on the wall!) and the shower curtain gets closed when I get out, so I could go my whole life not knowing there was black fungus in the grout or a ring around the tub. But I do know I need to look in there when I’m wearing glasses to assess the situation….

      • All of you glasses-wearers just explained why I’m the only one out of 2 different roommates who cleans the tub! THANK YOU. I always think “honestly! Don’t you see x, y, z…it’s RIGHT there!” But now I know….they simply did not / do not see…

        • Glad to help! I hope this is one of those cases where understanding why people do/don’t do something makes it less frustrating/annoying or helps you figure out how to address it.

    • Andie302

      I had three girls that stayed for a year in my house, and it took months to get the house back up to speed. They never cleaned the fridge, oven, pantry, or bathroom fixtures for what looked like a year. Every light switch had gunk on it. So gross! I’m no perfectionist, but ewwww.

    • I am not a clean freak by any means, but I am always astonished whenever I go over to friends houses and see their tub. I like to just leave a scrub brush nearby and touch up while I am in the shower, easy !

    • We’ve started using the scrubbing bubbles automatic shower cleaner, and it has cut down on the amount we have to scrub our shower/tub significantly. Could you put one of those in there and ask tenants to simply press the button each time they get out of the shower? Whether or not they do it is out of your hands, but if they did it, it could at least help a little bit.

      • Yep, I use that too. It’s no substitute for scrubbing, but it keeps soap scum from forming. I also switched to a machine washable shower liner and I have a fabric shower curtain. Makes a big difference to be able to launder both!

    • We rented for a bit when we first moved to DC, while looking for a house. The place we rented came with a monthly housecleaner. Pretty savvy on the landlord’s part if you ask me. The place gets maintained, and he gets to make sure that no one is growing weed in the closet or keeping unauthorized pets.

    • palisades

      I have a stand-off with my roommate regarding the cleanliness of the shower. Albeit, the stand-off is completely in my imagination, but I vacuum and clean the kitchen occasionally so I think it’s only fair he does the bathroom. Not sure how to bring this up to him though…

  • Pablo Raw

    Rave: Stay tuned for the Unofficial PoPville Orphan’s Non-Denominational Christmas Probably Chinese Food Dinner. Committee is currently working on details. Including a better name. Thanks.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: My head cold is getting worse and it’s making me uber cranky.
    Rave: I’m throwing the annoying “helper” under the bus at a meeting today. I sick of her complaining. She’s only helped us for 2 full days!
    Rave: The woman who a while back told me I had a medical condition that made me socially awkward tried to talk to me about rhinos today. She was very lectury with incorrect information, so I just told her she was wrong and walked away. Not entertaining her at all.
    Rant: My raves aren’t very nice. I need to think of some better ones.

    • Pfft. I pity the fool who tries to tell you something about rhinos you don’t already know.

      • Emmaleigh504

        My big boss actually told me something I didn’t know about rhinos a few months ago. Apparently people are stealing the horns off stuffed rhinos in museums! And he knows how to have conversation without lecturing, so he gets bonus points.

  • Rave: Home renovations basically complete, moving back in this weekend, even the getting ready to cook my first meals on my nuclear-powered range and sleep and shower in the really cool new “master suite.” And train the cat to use the cat door.
    Rant: Thought of me moving out puts Girlfriend in a weird move.
    Rave: Daughter moving home on Sunday.
    Rant: wanted to have a little time to hang out with Girlfriend d in the living room in our underwear before having to share a space with a third party (Girlfriend lives with her cousin).
    Rave: Immense closet space.
    Rant: clothes spread between two houses again.
    Maybe I can send the Daughter to live at the Girlfriend’s and have the Girlfriend move in…hmmmm (strokes beard in imitation of wise man)

  • Andie302

    Rave: The dog let me sleep until the alarm went off this morning.
    Rave: A new class (at my office gym) kicked my butt (in a good way) last night.
    Rave: In theory, I will be prepared in time for Christmas with gifts and cards and no last minute running around.
    Rant: That theory never seems to actually stand, year after year.
    Rave: I love it when I think of a good gift. I loathe just giving gifts for the sake of it, but it’s wonderful when you think of something (or remember something) that will hopefully be as perfect as you suspect when you purchase it. Fingers crossed!

  • Emmaleigh504

    Yo, Shawess! I just ran across this article about “Blank Space” on the blog Diamonds in the Library : http://thebillfold.com/2014/12/the-cost-of-things-in-taylor-swifts-blank-space-music-video/. Haven’t read it yet, but you might enjoy!

    • THANKS! Checking it out now!

    • palisades

      “A goat: $10 per goat per day
      Here is an amazing fact I just learned: There are tons of companies that will rent goats to you to clear your brush, briars and other various trash plants for a small fee per day. ”
      hahahaha I loved that bit.

  • Rave: Home after 10 days on the road
    Rant: Leave again in 4…
    Rave: gorgeous sunny day will hopefully chase my head cold/sore throat away

  • Rant: Waited until the last minute last night to bake the frozen pumpkin pie I had bought for today’s holiday potluck at the office… and realized that I didn’t know how to operate my oven. (It has a completely nonintuitive control panel with various buttons and a digital display, rather than a simple knob like the stove burners have.)
    Rave: Facebook friends who happened to be online had me post photos of the control panel and walked me through the process.

  • Accountering

    Rave: Survivor finale tonight! I have never been into this show, but am very excited to see the conclusion after watching the whole season!
    Rant: Losing in the 20th round of a shootout. Seriously guys? They tried to give that thing away 10 times. Just score a goal, Holtby stops their guy, and get 2 points. Super lame.
    Rave2: Road to the Winter Classic. So far, so good! Next weeks version will undoubtedly recap this painful shootout, and that sucks!

  • Rant: (watching) basketball + (watching) hockey + drinking too much means I am tired today. Yes, I know it was the drinking that did it, but let me have my rant.
    Rave: a friend who makes leather goods has finished an order I placed – hooray Christmas presents!
    Rave: having a laundry party tonight. WOOO DOIN’ LAUNDRY!!! I know you all are jealous.
    Rave: accomplished a 2014 goal yesterday of having at least one pic appear on Popville and DCist each month!
    Rave: I have a new case into which I will build some synthesizers. It is a wine box.
    Rant/rave: I want to buy some gear – either a modular synthesizer system or a camera lens – but I shouldn’t. I should really just make do with what I have. But I want to buy buy buy like a good American. Rahhh.

    • justinbc

      Nice! I’ve been slacking on my photo submissions this year. Hopefully next year stuff calms down and I have more time to dedicate to craftiness.

      • I’m not sure how much craftiness I have – I’ve started walking around with my camera a lot more, though. I picked up a Sony RX-100 ($408 on eBay from a big seller – it’s not worth $650) and can fit it in my pocket easily enough. It takes fantastic night shots and can be stabilized by placing my phone under the lens. So, I’ve ended up with hundreds more photos this year than ever before!

    • Anonynon

      I started making music again…although most of my tracks are only about 2 minutes long…cant seem to get an idea much longer than that. I use a M-Audio Axiom 64 and logic prox. I think the cold winters get me in the mood for creating angsty music ^.^

  • Allison

    Rant: I hate being the new person at work. I’ve been here six months and sometimes I’m still sooooo lost, particularly when dealing with other experts in an area of law I’m unfamiliar with on a cross-cutting issue. Sucks the most when I make a rookie mistake.

    • skj84

      Aw. I hope your coworkers are empathetic. Everyone is a newbie at some point.

      • Allison

        My coworkers totally are empathetic when I have to backtrack, not sure about my clients though (although they haven’t said anything.) I just let them know I’ve changed my mind on a certain legal interpretation and why as soon as possible and apologize for the error. Since this normally happens within hours they don’t seem to have a major problem with it. This actually hasn’t happened a lot until this week and last week, but that might be because they’re starting to trust me with more complex matters, and thus ones I’m more likely to make a newbie mistake on. Just trying not to beat myself up over it; you can’t bat a thousand, I guess.

  • Quotia Zelda

    Rave: New! Baby! Cousins!
    Rant: Hurry up with the names already! I need to order the NBCs their Walter Anderson alphabet prints.
    Rant: I’m a little worried about the names. My cousin has just enough of the hippie in her to possibly give the NBCs crap names.

  • skj84

    Rave/Rant: Spent all evening on the Maryland Health exchange last night. Setting up insurance is not my favorite adult chore. However it didn’t take nearly as long as I expected.

    Question for NFL fans: As I mentioned yesterday I’m going to the game on Sat. I usually carry a huge bag with me, which is verboten at the games. Anyone know where I can find a clear bag to carry my stuff? I have errands before the game and I don’t want to have to stuff everything into my pockets.

    • I could be wrong but I think your bag still has to be smaller than the small card the security people wear on their lanyard… it’s maybe 3×4?

    • They sell the approved clear bags at the games. You could carry the stuff you need for your errands in a shopping bag, then buy an approved clear bag and throw out the bag you’ve been carrying. Or if you’re driving, you can leave some things in your car after buying a bag. The approved size for a non-clear bag is about the size of a wallet or wristlet.

      BTW, you know that the game is Sunday, not Saturday, right?

  • Rant: Have had a job open in my office for a month and only two applicants. I am really hoping the new year turns up more job seekers and this is just a slow time of year.
    Rave: Tomorrow is the last day of work before holiday leave! So pumped.

  • RAVE: Bonus paid into my bank account today.
    RAVE: 3.1% merit raise for next year due to an “extraordinary” annual review.
    RANT: I was assigned a new manager (Mgr A) this year, due to my previous manager (Mgr B) being promoted to director. Staff were split in half at random and assigned to either manager for purposes of annual reviews, leave requests, and other HR crap. After discussion with other co-workers on my direct team, we realized that Mgr B judged her assigned staff waaaaaaaaay more harshly than Mgr A with his staff . Mgr A is much more generous with annual reviews and gives larger bonuses. All of us are on the same “team,” so basically Mgr B screwed her assigned employees for the last few years just “because.”
    RAVE: going to buy myself either a Korg MS-20 or the Arturia Microbrute to celebrate my monetary gains 😀
    RANT: Need to make big relationship decisions over the holiday. Not looking forward to difficult conversations.

    • CONGRATS!!! Microbrute > Minibrute, from what I can tell. Does the MS 20 have a sequencer at all? And USB/MIDI connectivity? If both, good luck making that decision. I envy you. 🙂

      • MS-20 does not have a sequencer. It does have MIDI out, USB, and external signal input (I’m going to run my bass guitar through this bad boy). I am leaning toward the MS-20 because I want to learn more about modular patching and it seems like a good entry point without going crazy expensive.
        That said, I also need powered monitor speakers (my current speakers are passive and crappy). I also need an audio interface that can handle midi input and send to stereo output. Any (affordable) suggestions?

        • I picked up my Yamaha HS80Ms from Hello Music a few years ago for much cheaper than they normally are. I love them. Really great monitors.

          • The reissue MS-20 is a disappointment (sound wise) compared to the OG.

          • The original vintage MS-20 will also set me back over $1200 easily (vs. $400 for the MS-20 mini re-issue). I’ve watched the comparison videos and the sound quality is not much of difference, especially for a n00b such as myself. I can’t get too hung up on being a “purist” at this point when I’m trying to put together an affordable, small bedroom production studio.

    • It’s really sad and annoying how a manager can make or break your job. My former manager was probably the worst I have ever had, but my current is the best!

      • Seriously. My previous boss wouldn’t fight for me at all and I made less than the admins without college degrees. I have a masters and a higher grade level. So, when the opportunity came I blew that popsicle stand and now I make 30% more after the promotion, salary adjustment my new boss got for me, raises in the last 2 years, etc.
        Why do some managers think employees will stay loyal when they’re treated poorly? I just don’t get it.

  • Anonynon

    Rant/Rave: I feel like the new girl iv been seeing, we lost a little momentum since the first few dates…went a day or two without talking to each other, I decided I was going to break the ice again and told her i wanted to see her soon asked her to go out with me this weekend. I feel like i needed to take the initiative on the next date, she liked my idea!

  • Rave: Reading these threads regarding dating always reminds me of the highs and lows and makes me thankful I am not in the boat anymore. There are times when I miss it, but what a roller coaster!
    Rant: Motivation is really low due to upcoming holidays and I have a good bit of work to get done.

    • Anonynon

      It is a roller coaster but people probably make it out to sound worse than it really is…I.E if you had a great date you might just say on here ‘had a nice weekend with new girl’. If they stood you up on a date, its probably a longer post and more comments on that. But I agree..the highs and lows at some point takes a toll but it keeps things ‘interesting’. One day I hope to be in your spot…preferably sooner than later 🙂

      • You’re sooo right. It’s like experiences at restaurants or with businesses: unfortunately people are more likely to complain than rave. It does keep things interesting and you always have a story to tell, good or bad, about a date!

  • saf

    Rant: People who drive to the Georgia Avenue Safeway are very bad at driving. STOP barreling out of the parking lot! The driveway crosses a sidewalk and goes into the street VERY close to the intersection. You keep almost running me over, and then almost causing traffic accidents.

  • Rave: Last day on prednisone after a five-day course. Looking forward to feeling a bit more normal.
    Rant: Prednisone side effects. Swollen fingers, jitters, can’t sleep, upset stomach. Glad this course is done, hoping I don’t have to repeat.
    Rave: Made latkes for the first time last night and my daughter loved them. Nice to start those traditions.

  • I Dont Get It

    Rant: I just renewed my vehicle registration online and it included the vehicle inspection fee. I’m about 99% sure my inspection doesn’t expire for another year. Fun getting that refunded!
    Rave: Our department cookie exchange, pot-luck lunch, Ugly Christmas sweater contest and Dirty Santa game was not as horrible as I expected it to be although the department negative Nancy, who is an excellent baker, rolled her eyes after discovering I only dipped my cookies in white chocolate and then decorated them instead of making everything from scratch.

  • It so pisses me off when my fellow work colleagues bring nothing to the holiday potluck and give no $$ contributions either, and then pile up their plate with food!!!

  • Rave: I’m done holiday shopping – gifts for about a dozen nieces and nephews – except for my hubby. Any ideas? I prefer to give experiential (concerts, edibles, etc.) gifts where possible but just haven’t had a chance to browse
    Rant: My boss is budgeting for next year and seems to be setting a different, higher standard for me than for a colleague who already underperforms and is better paid 🙁

  • Rave: Fantastic taco Tuesday with bestie last night. Won’t see him for 12 days so pup and I are on our own.

    Rave: Office taco lunch today, super sleepy now!

    Rant: No tacos tonight!

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rave: found the donut bread-pudding recipe I made several years ago! It’s soooo yummm! I make it with krispy kreme to make it extra decadent! I got it from the Globe and Mail, enjoy:

    12 jelly doughnuts
    6 eggs
    1/2 cup sugar
    2 cups milk
    1 cup cream
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    Tear doughnuts into bite-sized pieces and scatter in a large buttered baking dish.
    Whisk together egg and sugar until well combined. Whisk in milk, cream and vanilla. Pour over doughnuts and let sit for 45 minutes or until most of the custard is absorbed.
    Preheat oven to 325 F.
    Place dish in the oven and bake for 45 to 55 minutes or until custard is set. Cool.
    Cut into squares to serve. Serve with Lime Crème Anglaise or ice cream. Serves 8

  • justinbc

    Late question for Emilie, do you know much about the Algiers Point area in New Orleans? Found a really awesome property down there that we’re considering jumping on. It looks like an easy ferry ride across to the French Quarter, and the prices are incredible for the quality of the homes that still have that really old, charming vibe.

    • Emmaleigh504

      Algiers Point is ok. The ferry ride is easy, even I can do it and I get super seasick. If the ferry’s aren’t running then the CCC isn’t to far away, if I remember correctly. My parents looked at buying a house there, but I’ve forgotten why they decided against that ares, it was a million years ago. And I know the librarian at the local library 😀
      There is a stigma to living on the West Bank, even if it is technically New Orleans. Some people just don’t go over the river b/c they think it’s a different planet.

      • Emmaleigh504

        sorry for all the typos!

      • Emmaleigh504

        *Algiers Point is technically NO, but the rest of the west bank is not.

      • justinbc

        Awesome, thanks for the insider info! We would be using it as a vacation home primarily, and renting it out 90% of the year. I can handle the drive / ferry for the brief time we would be there ourselves 🙂 The place we’re considering is an old store, about 4,000 sqft, with beautiful huge ceilings and beams, terraces, etc, but it needs a lot of rehab, hence the great price. It’s right by the water though, so I doubt I would have a hard time renting it once I put my touch on it.

    • Emmaleigh504

      It’s been a really long time since I actually went to the Point, but I remember it being full of cute houses. Not a lot of neighborhood eateries and things, but cute houses.

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