Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user  Ian Livingston

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.

197 Comment

  • Rave: belated valentine’s dinner at Rose’s Luxury planned this week. So excited! Has anyone been recently and know if the line/wait is shorter given the cold? Also, is parking around the restaurant pretty straightforward or is it better to avoid? Any other recommendations welcome 🙂
    Rant: the red line this morning. The ride was alright but there was a huge line for the escalator at Dupont for some reason- it wasn’t broken or anything, just hugely crowded.

    • Rose’s Luxury is an excellent choice! It’s Barrack’s Row so parking is typically not plentiful by any means. I’ve heard of the line being 1-2 hours even with the cold so I recommend going early.

    • I live up the street (never have been able to get in) and yes, the lines are still going strong. 🙂 I don’t think parking is that bad though.

    • Parking isn’t that bad if you’re willing to walk a few blocks/circle. Just watch out for zone signs – there is some parking there that’s ONLY Zone 6 at all times – none of the two-three hours windows you often get in zone parking.

    • GiantSquid

      There’s a paid lot at the end of the block under the freeway and paid street parking on 8th. Otherwise, you have to troll the neighborhood for non-zone 6 parking on the correct side of the street if you don’t have a zone 6 sticker or guest pass.

  • Becks

    Rave: Excellent, relaxing weekend! I went to the Lorton Monopoly Tournament! I went bankrupt in the first round, but it was a lot of fun. Boy howdy, those people take Monopoly seriously!
    Rave: Someone shoveled my walk again! Who do I owe brownies?
    Rave: Dr. Praegers Veggie burgers!
    Rave: House of Cards Season 3-Friday!!!

    • Blithe

      I’ve never tried the veggie burgers, but Dr. Praeger’s spinach cakes are great too! Thanks for giving me some ideas for dinner.

    • Ally

      That’s awesome RE the monopoly tourney. Are there any other board game tourneys in the area that you’ve come across (and how did you find out about this one)?

      • Becks

        A friend of mine went to last years tournament and invited me this year. I wouldn’t have known about it otherwise. I would love to do more board game tournaments. That was fun!

        • I think the monopoly tourney is through habitat through humanity. I’ve done it before. I think I just googled monopoly tourneys and it came up.

      • saf

        Check with the folks at Labyrinth, on the hill at Eastern Market. They would know about those kinds of things.

        • Ally

          That’s true; those folks are awesome. I even found some obscure board game in there about morel mushroom hunting and the staff knew all about it and how to play!

    • Becks

      Thanks for suggesting avocado in tomato soup. I had never thought of that.

  • Rant: Is it really time to be back at work? After five days at home last weekend, two days seemed oh so short.
    Rave: It’s my wonderful wife’s birthday–Happy birthday wife!
    Rave: I got my 20-month-old to say “happy birthday” to my wife 🙂
    Rant: Totally forgot my plan to pick up baked goods at Le Caprice for the aforementioned birthday. D’oh!
    Happy Monday everyone!

    • I didn’t have all the time off that you did, but I agree that this past weekend was too short!

      • I was home that Friday because my daughter had a “fever” just before I picked her up the afternoon before–and then we had a snow day Tuesday. So the expected 3-day weekend turned into five days at home. I was ready to be back at work after all that!

  • Rant: The Oscars. Excruciatingly boring and four freaking hours long.
    Rave (such as it is): The last 45 minutes were more entertaining than the entire rest of the Oscars, making the fact that I watched until the end not quite as indefensible as it might have been. Excuse me while I put my head down for a while…

    • Ugh, I know. I absolutely went to bed before it ended because I’m still recovering a bit from my cold. Why do they go so freaking long????

    • jim_ed

      So dull. I fell asleep after 2 hours. NPH was a major bust as host.

    • I haven’t watched the Oscars in around 20 years. That was when Letterman hosted it and when Letterman was still funny. I haven’t seen any of the best picture nominees, but I’m planning to see American Sniper soon.

    • I actually skipped watching it this year, because there were zero surprises about who was going to win. Redmayne winning Best Actor was the closest thing there was to an upset, (I thought Keaton was going to get it) but it was clear that he had a good chance. I like the Oscars better when there is more of a healthy competition and some mystery about the outcome.

      • I was surprised (pleasantly) that American Sniper got shut out.
        And I really liked NPH, even though a few of his jokes flopped. To call him “a major bust” is to forget about Anne Hathaway and James Franco (?), and Seth MacFarlane, and David Letterman. Those were major busts.
        In case it wasn’t obvious, I don’t pay any attention to this stuff the other 364 days of the year!

        • Agreed about Sniper, sometimes the Academy does get it right.

          McFarlane was the worst, and the others you cited were not good, either. But I usually grade on a curve, because hosting the Oscars is a tough gig. It means being stuck with terrible dialogue and even more terrible musical numbers, and very few actors can strike the right balance. But occasionally it happens. I thought Chris Rock’s hosting was hilarious-somehow the reviews said the opposite. I also liked Hugh Jackman and Steve Martin’s hosting.

    • I Dont Get It

      I thought NPH did a good job.

    • I Dont Get It

      Forgot to mention I thought Lady Gaga did a great job with her SOM medly.

  • Rant: First date in months cancelled because snow on Saturday.
    Rant: It’s Monday.
    Rant: Have spent over a month trying to find a therapist that takes my insurance AND is accepting clients. Perhaps today I’ll have some luck. (Maybe the 10th try is the charm?)

    • Re: therapy, have you considered looking at out-of-network providers whose offices file with your insurance company? You might find that the “coinsurance” (copay) is not very different that it would be with in-network doctors after you hit your deductible. I don’t know what your plan is like, but if you have a low enough deductible and high enough % payment for out-of-network providers, the cost difference might be pretty small.

    • Rant: Snow on Saturday canceled nearly all my carefully laid plans. Still had a wonderful time volunteering on Saturday in the morning/early afternoon, and metro was mostly cooperative.

      Rave: It’s going to be a great week, I can feel it.

    • Ally

      Aw, hope the date at least gets rescheduled!

    • Thanks alsoanon and ally,
      Today turned around a little! The 10th try was the charm, got an appointment covered by my insurance. Not as close to home/work as I’d like but an easy commute. Phew.
      … and I hope the date gets rescheduled, too! We said we would reschedule but then never suggested a new time, which makes me a little nervous it won’t happen. But we’ll see!

      • Then propose a date…
        It sounds like you’re waiting around for the other person to broach the topic. Are you waiting to figure out your schedule for this week?

      • Ally

        Yeah, that’s always tricky. I think I’d err on the side of checking in about a reschedule. If he/she seems enthusiastic about setting up a new time, you know where you stand. If not, you know where you stand too (unless he/she gives a pretty good excuse for not being able to reschedule). Hope it works out, if not, not to sound too Oprah, but just think of it as one step closer to meeting someone who isn’t flaky.

  • Rant: Busted the screen of my Galaxy S4, first time I’ve broken a phone ever so I wasn’t too angry with myself but I’m on that rent-a-phone-till-it-is-paid-for plan with Verizon so I needed to fix it or buy out the balance. I found ENS Tech on Yelp with outstanding reviews, paid the $100 (higher than most yelpers reported), had to wait several hours longer than most yelpers reported, and am not at all pleased with the results. The screen doesn’t seem to be all the way attached, there are coming/going air bubbles, it doesn’t read my touch all the time, and dirt/lint are falling behind the screen. I think I made the situation much worse and I’m really annoyed about it now.
    Rave: A chance to vent on here!

    • Sorry, one more rant: unreliable & irresponsible sister who always relies on me to save her butt yet can’t be counted on to do a simple nice task for me. I’m 12 years younger, how is this our dynamic?!
      I am grumpy today.

      • Because you allow it to be your dynamic. Just stop saving her.

        • I *know* you’re right but I’m such a sucker.

          • People will do to you only what you let them do.
            My mother let her older sister always ask for help right up till she ruined her credit by letting a car get repossessed. That was the final straw. Don’t let it get that bad!

          • Oh man we’re nowhere near that, thank goodness! I’m going to switch my negative energy to being grateful that it’s not that bad.

  • Rave: Katt Williams show in Baltimore. I’m sure it was better than the Oscars.
    Rant: Have to drive out too far flung silver spring to get my car this week which means sacrificing a gym visit for the privilege.
    Rant/rave: Hope to hear about the job this week. Only between me and another guy so crossing fingers.
    Rant: Group house that only did their walkway and not the sidewalk. My downstairs neighbors did the same thing. Ugh! Can not stand lazy people.

    • Hate to say it, but if the bad [anonymous] was operating, I’d probably shovel their walk and throw the snow right onto their walkway. However, the good [anonymous] would just shovel their walk- not to help them, but to help the poor souls trying to make their way home on those awful sidewalks.

      • I really don’t have the time, and I couldn’t find ice melt, so it would take forever to break through the ice. I used a bunch of table salt on my ice in hopes it’ll break up something by the time I get home. I’ll knock on their door then if it’s not done yet.

        • Am I missing something? The downstairs tenant is in the doghouse for not shoveling the sidewalk, which I assume is also YOUR sidewalk. But you give yourself a “I really don’t have the time” pass? The snow was over by dusk on Saturday. EVERYONE had the time to get it cleared up by Monday morning.

          • I don’t have time to shovel the other sidewalk as anon suggested. For our sidewalk, I’ve salted and plan to tackle it tonight. I think my post implied as much.
            My downstairs neighbor is in the “doghouse” because they NEVER shovel. They work standard 9-5 while I push 6 days a week 55+ hrs. I’m not giving myself a pass, but it would be nice to not suck up the slack for 3 able bodied adults.

          • And yes, I’ve talked to them, and I asked them to shovel Saturday while I tried to find ice melt. When they got around to it, they only did our walkway rather than walkway and sidewalk which I always handle when I’m shovelling.
            I actually tried to clear it before work, butsit’s frozen, so I had to stop or risk being late to work.

          • Anon Spock, aren’t you in a condo? Does the condo not spell things out as far as who’s responsible for doing what? Sounds like there needs to be some kind of snow-shoveling rotation established, or perhaps the building should hire a snow-shoveling service.

          • No, I’m not, but a rotation would be helpful. Hopefully, I won’t have to deal with this for many more months.

  • epric002

    rant: either i ate something that didn’t agree with me or i have a stomach bug.
    rave: earlier round of chamomile & plain toast went ok. attempting round 2 w/earl grey and applesauce…
    rant: snow canceled everything on saturday.
    rave: the dogs got a fun romp in the snow and were nice and tired afterwards.
    rave: yesterday’s weather. i’m ready for spring now please!

    • SFT

      Stomach bug is going around. My house had it 2 weekends ago and it was particularly brutal. RIP old shower curtain and bathmat. Gatorade and Ritz crackers were the only thing I could handle for several days. Good luck!!!

  • Rant: Bought underwear instead of doing laundry. Haven’t looked into wash and fold yet. Gah.
    Rant: Not sure what happened with the pipes but the laundry room flooded, causing my apartment to flood too.
    Rave: Upstairs neighbor who realized the laundry room was flooding and took care of it before things got *really* bad.
    Rave: Damage was minimal.
    Rave: Korean BBQ tonight!

    • Ally

      Burst pipes are the worst. Trust me, your apartment owner is having a very bad day (happened to me last year). Glad it wasn’t worse, though!

    • I’ve used WashCyclelaundry[dot]com before – it was a god experience. They pick up and deliver.

  • Rave: Great, relaxing Saturday! I spent it watching tv, drinking bourbon and playing with my dog in the snow. My housemate shoveled the driveway and walk, even though he didn’t have to. He’s from California, so shoveling is kind of a novelty to him. I bought him a six pack of Stone IPA to thank him.

    Rant: The $50 deducted from my paycheck for Smart Benefits never showed up on my SmartTrip card. Apaprently I never claimed the money (something I’ve never had to do before – it’s always been automatic.) Metro is supposed to get back to me soon about this but I haven’t heard from them yet.

    Rant: Kitchen kink pipe froze twice this week. It didn’t burst, but I had a couple of days with no water from that sink. I need to get it insulated before the next big temperature drop.

    Rave: I put Lightweights reflectors on my spokes. I haven’t had a chance to ride yet, but I’m looking forward to my next early morning commute in the dark to see how well they work. Maybe tomorrow.

  • Blithe

    Rave: 50 is the new 80. Yep, all it takes is a few sub-zero wind chill factor days to make me appreciate what I used to regard as “cold” weather.
    Rant/Rave: Seeing spring and summer clothes in stores. It feels a bit cruel to tramp through the snowdrifts in search of warm, water resistant gloves to find, instead, cheerful racks of swimsuit cover-ups. But, on the bright side, I guess that’s a reliable harbinger of Spring!
    Rave: Ibeyi. I’m really enjoying their music — and toying with the idea of going to their gig.
    Rave: Many thanks to the kind PoPvillagers that told me about Smartwool socks! They’re awesomely wonderful, and turn the Docs and the Blunnies that I already own into serviceable winter boots. Yay!

  • Another day, another monumental Metro mess-up. I’m curious: do any employers notice productivity declines since they can’t rely on all of their workers to show up on time? Does anyone even care? Metro has been going down hill for years now, but it seems like they’re on a rapid descent right now. Is this just something the little people have to deal with- because it seems like the powers that be aren’t moving on this issue.
    Icy sidewalks. If you have enough money to afford a home in a nice part of town, you have enough money to pay for a service to take care of your sidewalk if you’re not home or are not inclined to shovel yourself.
    Rave: Life is good. Made homemade dumplings last night and indulged in French onion dip with chips. Yummy!

  • Rave: Had such an amazing day yesterday. Had bagels and mimosas, walked out in the sunshine with the dog, took two naps, ate chocolate…it was so nice to have a day off and to be able to spend it with my fiance.
    Rant: I’m nervous about asking my boss for thirteen days off this summer for our honeymoon. I’ve worked so hard to squirrel away vacation time for the last three years and we’re going away over the fourth of July (where not much really happens around here anyway). Every time I ask for time off, I get lectured about what is occurring at our organization during those days or times of year (it’s been three years, I think I got it) and I feel so guilty. Sigh, just gotta rip off the band-aid.

    • Even if you’re missing something, so what? They’re giving you vacation to utilize, so they can’t expect you’ll never use it. Don’t give the boss a chance. Say you’ve scheduled your honeymoon at a time that has historically been quiet and these are the dates and that you’ve taken less vacations in other years to accommodate the extended time needed.

    • Man. I’m thankful my boss never questions my vacation plans. Reading about people being nervous about asking for leave or having leave denied on this page has made me grateful for the job I have and wary about getting another one! As Americans, we already get a lot less vacation than our European counterparts. And unfortunately with the little vacation we have, many of us don’t take it or only take a small part. It is not good for our physical or emotional health. There’s a small movement now where companies are forcing people to take vacations because they see that it benefits their own bottom lines and results in happier and more productive employees. We need to get rid of this notion that sitting at a desk 365 days a year, 8 hours a day signifies a commitment to work and good results.

    • Ally

      Although you shouldn’t have to do this, maybe it would help if you gave your boss a hand-off plan for who was in charge of what in your absence, etc.? I’m going on maternity leave for a couple months this Summer and my boss is already getting worried, but telling him that I’d do a formal hand-off plan seemed to help.

      • +1 my boss did this before having major surgery and it really calmed her staff and the rest of the executive team.

      • Actually, I’d argue that if you’re taking 13 days off, you should have to have a hand off plan. Not to get the leave approved, necessarily, but your work shouldn’t just be sitting there for two weeks (nearly three if those only include business days) with nobody knowing what is going on in case something comes up.

        • Yes, for sure. That naturally occurs with my position any time I leave for more than two days (and I clearly communicate that plan out so everyone is aware).

        • Ally

          Same here, but I’m in a job where 30-40 people are asking me for stuff daily. Wasn’t sure what the protocol was for people who might be working on long-term project where day-to-day may matter a tad less.

    • Policies exist for a reason. If you qualify for the time take it. Don’t let anyone make you feel bad about it. It’s so short sighted and selfish for employers to make their employees feel guilty for taking vacation.

    • Take the time off and don’t feel guilty. I used to never take my vacation time until I had one of the most freeing realizations of my career: The office world will keep spinning without me. If your boss is going to give you crap, you’re going to have to just stand there and take it, but do so knowing that it is, in fact, crap. It doesn’t matter if you’re away on your honeymoon or just taking a week off to catch up on Netflix. You have vacation time, you want to use it, they will manage without you, and it will all be there when you get back. Congrats on getting married!

    • I’ve been stewing about how little leave US workers get recently. I actually get what folks would think is a decent amount, but I hate that I have to work for months and months just to build up enough leave for a two week vacation. Also, having the internal debate about lying and calling in sick just so I don’t have to use vacation time for things like plumbing/HVAC repairs at home. Technology has allowed us to accomplish more in less time, but rather than allowing us more free time, it just raises expectations of how much can be done (and when – 24 hours a day…)

      • At least you don’t have sick and vacation combined into PTO. That’s the worst.

      • It seems that people who are insecure in their own professional skin are more likely to over-manage others. And that not keeping up with the times and technology will make people insecure. So I think until the old guard start retiring and making way for people who learned to use a computer before college, we’ll be stuck with bosses who need to manage people, instead of managing work. I just hope that they don’t poison too many of the next generation.

        • Blithe

          Wow! If I’m reading this right, you seem to have decided that the “old guard” is, by definition, “insecure” because they didn’t learn “to use a computer before college”. Um, I hope you’ve considered the possibility that your generalizations may be, at best, industry-specific? I’m not clear that good management skills are as highly correlated with good computer skills as you seem to be. And I’ve certainly known — and known of — many with excellent computer skills, who lack the people-skills to be competent managers. And even if the correlation between the two sets of skills is significant, I’m not getting the leap to making this a generational battle. But perhaps I’m too old and too unskilled to be making leaps of any sort.

          • Are you challenging me to a Battle of the Anecdotes? Because *I* have known people who…. 😉

            But seriously, I think there’s a new management style coming. I think older folks, who might be great mentors and good at lots of important stuff, will resist the advent of New Work. You oversimplify (as perhaps I did) when you make it about computer skills and managements skills and a required correlation between the two. That’s not what I meant to say, though I forgot this is SemanticsLand and every post must be parsed for every possible interpretation prior to submission. I meant that younger people are more comfortable in virtual environments. And yes, I’ll stand by that statement. Though with my knees, I might ask you to give up your seat so I can sit by it.

            This is a thread about leave time, and taking sick days versus vacation days and what to do about work when the plumber gave you a window of 8 to 6. About time as pertains to work. I think it’s changing in a world of changing communication. I think some of the old guard resists.

          • “I think there’s a new management style coming… I think some of the old guard resists.”
            As generalizations, I think both of these statements are true now and have probably always been true.

        • I Dont Get It

          I’m a Baby Boomer and agree with MIss Patty. At places I’ve worked it’s the Boomers who are most resitant to things like working from home. These people need to retire!

    • Your vacation leave is part of your payment package. Just as you shouldn’t feel guilty about taking a paycheck that you earn, you shouldn’t feel guilty about taking the time you earn. I know that doesn’t help when you have to deal with a difficult person but don’t let a boss try to take something that you earned away from you.

    • Don’t ask. Just announce it, well in advance. Make them be the bad guy – they won’t in this one case, weddings and honeymoons seem to have a vacation exception with bosses.

  • SFT

    Rant: The Saturday night HBO movie was The Fault in our Stars. I knew it was going to be sad, but didn’t realize how sad. I bawled like a baby!
    Rave: Survived a particularly brutal round of layoffs.
    Rant: The air is thick in here today!

  • Rave: Bought plane tickets for a two week vacation this August! So excited!
    Rant: It’s no where near August and I’m tired of making the choice of putting on boots or having my feet freeze. I need to buy flat, black boots, but just haven’t found the time/interest.

  • Follow up: thanks for the support – I stood up to my boss and made him deny my leave request. I don’t know if he added comments with some sort of bs deflecting blame for being a bad boss who cannot manage workload, but at least he denied it and was not as passive-aggressive as usual.

  • Rant: Kiddo’s been out of sorts for almost a week (tummy issues).
    Rant: Gave it to me, I think.
    Rave: He still has a good disposition.
    Rave: Don’t care about cooking this week LOL (in light of last week’s short discussion)

    • “Don’t care about cooking this week” — GOOD 😀

    • SFT

      So sorry you guys are sick!!! it lasted longer in my little guy (about a week) than it did with us (about 2 days). Poor kiddo lost a whole pound! Mine rebounded with a huge appetite though. Nothing worse than being sick and still having a tiny human to take care of.

      • yeah my child doesn’t really have a pound to lose – he’s like 5%…..soooooo these types of things have me worrying more than many parents, I think. We have a thursday appointment with his primary, just not sure I want to wait that long.

        • SFT

          Same boat here. Mine is in the 10th percentile for weight, it’s scary. Our pediatrician told us to feed him anything that he would eat, including milk, but all I could get him to eat for days were crackers (ritz & baby yums), juice, and some milk. His appetite is back like crazy now, so I think it’s his body’s way of balancing back out. I hope your guy gets back to eating soon!

          • ok, thanks – we’re going to the doc Thursdays because he hasn’t thrown up (yet). He still gets a night time (and offered morning) bottle because he doesn’t drink/eat enough during the day (bring it on, other parents, flame me for giving a bottle to my 15 month old!). We’ve been cutting his bottle to be more water, less formula. And offered more water/pedialyte than milk. Yesterday he ate, but not great. Having a small child is terrifying when they start to get sick. He just gained a little weight and all I can think is that he back under 20lbs 🙁

          • SFT

            We’ve been trying to break our kiddo of the bottle too. He’s almost 17mo. He drinks water and juice from a cup, but he only wants milk from the bottle. I in the afternoon and another before bed. Don’t beat yourself up for it, it’ll happen at his pace.

      • oh, did your son have a horrid reaction to dairy with this? For some reason, this is what seems to be the major trigger in my son’s throwing up (at night). He hasn’t had a fever, but this morning I couldn’t tell if he was getting warm

        • SFT

          So I was lucky, I saved frozen breast milk for an occasion such as this. So I gave him the frozen stuff for a couple of days and he did well with it. I did give him cows milk a couple of times while he was really sick and it totally made it worse. My pedi said to keep giving him milk though, that he was going to throw up anyways and the cows milk shouldn’t make a difference. i didn’t buy it, because he threw up with the cows milk but not the frozen breastmilk. Anyways. Have you tried pedialyte? Mine didn’t really like it, so we just did ritz and apple juice.

          • Your ped said to keep giving him milk?? That’s crazy. No dairy is Rule One for stomach bugs.
            We always had better luck with gatorade than pedialyte, because the latter tastes terrible. Colder is better. Sometimes bubbles help, so try combining the gatorade with sprite or ginger ale (some soda that has sugar but no caffeine.)

          • I’m going to pick up a little gatorade to have with dinner, just in case. We have clear pedialyte but yeah he doesn’t really drink much.

        • Yikes on the weight concerns on top of the stomach bug. Sometimes my daughter’s stomach bugs turn into diarrhea & cutting out milk (and sometimes other dairy) for a day or two seems to help.
          Remind me, what kinds of foods does he like/not like?
          Also – on the bottles – meh. You do what you gotta do. If you’re worried about it, try the nuk sippy cups (if you haven’t tried them already)–they worked as a great bridge between bottles and harder sippy cups & straw cups for my daughter. But I imagine nutrition matters more than bottle use at this point.

          • yeah I don’t care about the bottles. He’ll drink water in a straw cup, and cows milk from the take-n-toss. Just formula in the bottle. He needs it, that’s more important. We also brush his teeth, which is the major concern with bottles at this age.

        • SFT

          He did drink a little bit of gatorade too, but was more into apple juice. Our pedi said that the new thing is to give milk. I hate all the back and forth between what we used to recommend vs what we now recommend. I think it’s pretty clear that little tummies don’t like milk when they are sick.

  • Rant: The office is cold today. Brrr.
    Rant: I have caught a cold.
    Rave: I spent the weekend at home, relaxing and puttering in the kitchen. I made three vegetarian dishes on Sunday so I have lots of yummy leftovers for lunches this week.

  • Pablo Raw

    Rant: Saturday plans were cancelled when I was already on my way and the return home took me hours. HOURS. I completely felt like killing somebody, starting with the ones on the bus talking loudly on the phone but then
    Rave: I got home, prepared some lunch and ate…and suddenly the world was beautiful.
    Rave: Laundry, the smell of clean clothes.

  • Rant: Work. I need a new job. Waiting to hear back from a new job. I’m dying here.
    Rave: Dating. Third date went well. Planning the fourth this week. I still can’t believe how nice this guy is. I’ve only dated jerks in the past, so this is pleasant.

    • Ally

      That’s awesome! If you don’t mind my asking, how’d you meet the nice guy (I’m getting married this week to a long-time friend), but have always wondered about the online dating vs meeting in person thing.

  • jim_ed

    Rave: New car handled the snow on Saturday like a champ. Made it to Fairfax during the initial snow and made it back during the freezing rain no problems.
    Rant: People out in rear wheel drive cars in the snow. If you don’t think you can go faster than 8 miles an hour on the interstate, then don’t get out on the roads to begin with.
    Rave: Arundel Mills. There’s not a better people watching spot in the DC area. Plus, Medieval Times!
    Rant: Winter can go to hell. Bring on Spring.

  • Rant: Seems like someone’s serving chili wherever I go these days. I’m all swelled up like a balloon.
    Rave: It was so nice relaxing at home on Saturday. I can’t remember the last time it was snowing on a non-work day! Made some really good bread, which inspired me to start a sourdough starter.
    Rave: Our pipes unfroze without any disasters!

  • Rave: I had an excellent weekend. One my friends even suggested, completely unprompted, that our night out Saturday could have been an LL Bean commercial. My toes were warm and dry.
    Rant: This morning I reached down to move some stuff and smashed my face on the corner of my kitchen counter. I’m going to have a nice little black eye.

  • skj84

    Rave: I had a wonderful time at Laser Cat this weekend! Adrian Loving’s set was awesome and it really wasn’t that cold in the building. I was expecting a bit of a mess after Ice Yards, but I was pleasantly surprised.Only downside was my ringing ears the next day. I need to remember to bring ear plugs to these things!

    Rant: I’m working on a side project that is taking too much of my time and energy. I really wish I said no when it was offered to me.

  • gotryit

    Rant: snow blower broke 1/4 of the way through clearing the sidewalks.
    Rave: warranty period!
    Rant: shoveling the rest / my back – I’m getting old.
    Rave: kids had fun in the snow / slush

  • Rant: was shoveling yesterday and when I tried to push the gate door shut, I got a shallow puncture wound on these two exposed screws sticking out of it. I had previously asked the LL to fix the door but hadn’t noticed the screws at the time. I texted him about it yesterday and he told me he had sent someone out but didn’t know he never showed up. I got a tetanus shot as a precaution.
    Rave: when I leave PG I sure will miss delays the entire month of February.

  • Rave: cold/flu/sinus infection (?) finally starting to clear up thanks to +/- 70 hours of sleep this weekend
    Rant: I took an alka-seltzer plus for severe sinus congestion this morning when I got to work because I didn’t see any warning about drowsiness as a side effect. Lesson learned: just because I didn’t see it doesn’t mean it wasn’t there. Upon a second look (and feeling suddenly verrryyy sleepy): “marked drowsiness may occur.”
    Rave: should only last four hours, hopefully!

  • Rant: Got a low-level cold which I’m hoping doesn’t develop into anything worse. Wanted to go to sleep early last night but roommate had friends over to watch the Oscars.
    Rave: Pretty snow on Saturday!
    Rant: But man, the streets/sidewalks were a mess yesterday and this morning.
    Rant: I keep on putting off looking for new jobs. I like my current one okay (abysmal pay and no upward mobility, but great people and can be interesting work) so I don’t have much motivation to deal with the stress of writing cover letters and figuring out what I want to do. Just need to set aside time to make myself do that.

    • I know the feeling – I tend to go in spurts where I get really upset with my job and apply for a few things, but then things level out and I’ll figure, eh, may as well stay here for now. Cover letters aren’t fun and the process is so tedious/demoralizing. I’ve found it’s best to set goals (send out a certain number of apps a week) and build it into my schedule as an activity, the same way I would the gym or dinner with friends, etc.

  • Rant: Poorly plowed curb lanes made for a sloooowwwww bus ride down Connecticut Avenue this morning.
    Rave: Our new indoor parking spot at home.

  • Rant: Hungover and back to work after a week skiing.
    Rant: More snow in DC than Jackson Hole last week.
    Rave: A bad day skiing beats a good day working.
    Rave: Very pretty and much younger woman flashed a vaguely flirty smile at me and then did it again when I looked back at her thinking “did I just see that?” I probably reminded her of some beloved elderly relative or maybe she’s just a happier Monday morning commuter than most of us are, but it was a needed blast of warmth on a cold, cold morning.

  • nightborn

    Rant: Metro. I had to take the Red Line yesterday to have brunch with my parents and sister in Rockville. I checked the WMATA site, and it said trains were running every 20 minutes. I get to Dupont, everyone is crammed on one side of the platform like sardines with the other side blocked off. I miss my train trying to fight through the crowd, and the next one is 20 minutes away. Fine, it’s 20 minutes, I’ll live.

    Well, what do you know – if that 20 minutes remains 20 minutes for about 5 minutes, and then the timetable screen goes blank for a while, and then still says 20 minutes, it’s not exactly 20 minutes! Ended up standing there waiting for about 40 minutes total. No delays were announced at any point. Metro is worthless.

    Rave: managed to drag myself out of bed bright and early and hit the gym. I am determined to lose these pesky 5 lbs.

  • Rave: Awesome, awesome weekend in NYC, getting to see the Washington Chorus perform at Carnegie Hall!
    Rave: Spent a couple of hours geeking out at the New York Transit Museum. Amazing collection. Kicking myself for never going there before, even when my sister lived in Brooklyn.
    Rant: The Amtrak terminal at Penn Station on Sunday was like the evacuation of Saigon. No lines, no order, no basic civility, just a completely full terminal and an extraordinary crush of near-panicked people that could have easily hurt or killed somebody–no exaggeration. In retrospect, I’m particularly mad that the station has dozens, if not hundreds, of police and soldiers everywhere yet completely ignoring an actual public safety threat.

    • Cinnamonster

      So glad you got to see the Washington Chorus! My best friend is an alto in the chorus and has raved about singing the Passio. 🙂

    • Catching the Amtrak back to DC at Penn Station is the worst. I frequently take the train up to NY to visit family and it always sucks. There’s little tricks you can learn to avoid the mob, for example being nice to the Red Caps and asking them the arrival track of your train, watching the escalators to see which one switches from up to down, if you’re on the NE Regional train that started in Boston you can look for it on the arrivals screen. My favorite strategy to wait in the lower level lobby where the NJ Transit trains are so you avoid the mob scene at the escalators.

  • Rant: Two things you don’t want? (1) Kid with stomach bug and (2) ice storm the night before your first open house.
    Rave: Vomiting stopped and 48 degree temps the day of open house.
    Rave: Lots of interest, both at open house and from people making a special trip to see the place.
    Rave: Agent is very optimistic. That kind of attitude is not in my nature, but I’ve moved form pessimistic to neutral. We’ll see.
    Rant: This is getting real.

    • Where are you moving? (Or do you not know yet?)

      • We’re not sure yet, but we’re not leaving the area. The particular destination neighborhood is the subject of intense discussion – discussion that, it appears, needs to be wrapped up fairly quickly.

  • Rant – Summer (‘pre college’) programs for teens are expensive and that money could be saved for college. Job options for teens are few. The interesting internships for teens (Smithsonian etc.) are hard to get. Being Idle is not good either. My 16 year old is going to do SAT Prep but that leaves a lot of free time during the summer…

    • I did random retail work when I was 16, and some lifeguarding. Any options like those available?

      • So did I, 30hrs a week. I learned to get up on time, I learned about paying taxes and I made a few bucks. She did the camp counselor thing last year and did counselor in training the year before there may be some retail options but you never know what’s available. You can’t really ‘plan’ around retail if you are not available until school ends.

        • Quotia Zelda

          My daughter is 17, and her experience last summer was that the kids who started looking for summer jobs in March mostly found work (and just worked shorter hours until school let out). The kids who started looking in May/early June did not – everyone had already hired.

    • palisades

      What’s wrong with a job that breaks a sweat or something that’s mind-numbing? I look back on my job as a teenager (working at a golf course doing maintenance and other crap work) with nothing but great memories. Sometimes the crappy jobs are the best.

    • A kid’s participation in an academic summer program can often increase his/her chances of getting a merit-based scholarship. So it’s not necessarily a zero-sum game as far as “money spent on summer programs” and “money to be spent on college.”

      • Everything you are say is true; labor builds character, hard to find work, I want her to maintain grades and not work until school is out, paying for summer program could yield rewards but not guaranteed…I am trying to balance this info with what I know about my kid and figure out what works best… not easy.

        • Most summer programs don’t last the entire summer. Perhaps the kid could be in a program for a few weeks and work the rest of the summer?

  • Quotia Zelda

    Rave: Homemade banana bread.
    Rave: Yesterday’s weather.
    Rant: Today’s weather.
    Rave: Middle Zelda has developed an adorable obsession with K-Pop boys. She is now teaching herself Korean with Youtube videos.

  • Rant: My husband called me a freak.
    Rave: Because he thinks my sense of smell is superhuman.
    Poll: Most people can smell when a stranger has been in the house, right? I got home from a few days away, and asked who he had had over. He did a very cartoonish open-mouth expression of surprise/ confusion. But then, his sniffer has always been really weak.

    • Ally

      I’m the same way. I’ve always had a ridiculously strong sense of smell (exacerbated by being pregnant at the moment, so it’s especially off the charts). For me, largely depends on what the person has eaten. I can smell McDonald’s on someone a mile away, for whatever reason (doesn’t smell bad or good to me, just strong).

    • SFT

      Not unless said guest was particularly pungent. But my prego nose could smell everything!!!

      • When I was pregnant, my normally astute nose really was superhuman! That was fun. I can also tell when my kids are getting sick.
        Years ago, with a mixed group of friends, we had this conversation. Most of the women believed that they could identify their mate (freshly showered or otherwise) in a blindfolded smell-test. Most of the men believed that most of the women were lying or at least deluded. We didn’t ever test it.

        • SFT

          I could totally pick my husband out by his smell (it’s usually a pretty good smell!). I always attributed it to me liking his pheromones. I know it’s weird, but I love love love the way his head smells. not the shampoo, but his masculine scent. I bet if we went to the googles, we could find a study or two on this very subject 🙂

    • Women have better senses of smell than men. I think my nose is especially alert at random times. Like I could smell the stinky trash can the minute I hit the front door with trash far away in the kitchen while it didn’t seem to bother my roommate.

    • What I can always smell when someone has been in a house is their perfume, cologne, lotion, smelly shampoo or deodorant, or heavy smell in the detergent their clothes were laundered in.

  • Rant – Food poisoning
    Rant – on deadline at work, so still working
    Rant – dehydrated, chills, ug.
    Rave – got to spend time with a good friend Saturday and visit with her puppy before getting sick.

  • Question for the group:
    I have a crack in my windshield that seems to be growing by the minute, so I definitely have to replace it soon. I just got my new city/RPP and inspection stickers last month. Has anyone here had to get replacement stickers due to replacing a cracked windshield? I just looked on the DMV site and it seems like my only option to getting a replacement city/RPP sticker is by going to a DMV location in person… but as you can see from the site it’s not very clear:
    I tried figuring out how to get a replacement inspection sticker… but I just can’t with DC dot gov right now.
    If anyone has run into this and has some advice…. especially how to get a replacement for both stickers online (if possible), I’d very much appreciate it!

    • When I had my windshield replaced many years ago, the glass company took the stickers off the old windshield and put them on the new one.

      • Thanks textdoc (I somehow knew you might have an answer :D)
        I just spoke with my insurance company who suggested the same thing… but I thought the DC stickers were designed to be voided if you scrape them off. I know I could never get the parking sticker off in one try. Maybe the glass company dudes have a magic way of doing that?

        • All I remember is that — although I didn’t watch them do it — the old stickers were affixed to the new windshield like magic.

        • I assume they use razorblades. I’ve had a sticker come unstuck on it’s own and had no issues using it until it expired, so I think you’ll be fine.

          • Got it… razor blades and magic! I just got off the phone with my dad who also said this might be the solution. Here I was imagining I would have to display the stickers on broken off bits from my old windshield on my dash. I think I’ll have to suck it up and call 311 later to figure out what to do in case razor blades and magic don’t work this time around.

        • GiantSquid

          We had to replace a windshield last winter and the pros got the stickers off and onto the new windshield with no issue.

  • Rant: Sad news about a close friend who is going through a really hard time. This has been going on for a while, and this is the first I’m hearing about it.
    Rant: Trying to think of nice things I can do to help, but them being so far away is a big obstacle.
    Rave/Rant: Said friend talking about how I should move up where they are and how much fun we would have. I was mulling it over and am actually kind of tempted. But it’s not practical right now for a number of reasons.

  • Meal plan lovers, you might want to check out Huckle & Goose. If you can get past the initial screen (which has both __ & __ and the word “curated” — PoPville’s collective favorite things — you might like the concept. Sorry, I had to say “concept” too. But seriously, the menus are pretty nice. I’m doing their 14-day trial now and like it so far. It’s NOT the plan I mentioned last week, though. That’s something different.

  • I Dont Get It

    Rant: 30 year old Wiccan Dog Sitters who thinks his collection of ten Amiibo figurines should be permanently displayed on my coffee table.
    Rant: 30 year old Wiccan Dog Sitters who attempt to explain how to use these toys to play video games, potentially allowing data to be transferred in and out of games and across multiple platforms. Somehow you click the figure(s) on the gaming device and it displays your avatar and the character(s) to play the game. I think.
    Rant: I feel old!!!! My Beanie Baby collection never really did anything but lie around and depreciate in value.

  • Rant: I’m trying to throw a John Cheever-themed party this weekend upon request and cannot wrap my head around doing so. Well, sort of. I have this one idea where we start in my apartment, continue to the building’s social room, and then end in the parking lot behind the building with The Swimmer being projected into Rock Creek Park and everyone sort of shivers and then goes home. But I don’t have a projector or a copy of The Swimmer nor do I think my guests would enjoy that sort of thing. Any Cheever fans out there with ideas?
    Rave: caught up with some college friends in Bethesda last night, which meant the raunchiest, most perverted, hilarious conversation I have had in awhile.
    Rave: wandered parts of Bethesda I hadn’t visited in 20 years. Despite all the change, a lot of it remains the same.

    • Surely friends don’t make friends throw John Cheever-themed parties? 😉

    • Bonus rant: in organizing this John Cheever-themed birthday party, one of the folks who was supposed to buy her ticket several weeks ago is flaking out… because she didn’t buy her ticket despite sending me an itinerary. I pointed out that tickets are only $70 more than when she looked prior. But no, rather than say she doesn’t want to come (or at least spend money on the trip), she keeps changing the requirements of her flight until the flight is too expensive. At least the birthday girl’s other friends are coming through!

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