Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user John Sonderman

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.

290 Comment

  • I Dont Get It

    Rant: AAA batteries.

    • Yeah, what was the deal with those? Are they a different voltage than AAs? Why do they exist?

      • I Dont Get It

        Plus they seem to only come in packs of 36 when you only need 2 per year.

      • Same voltage (1.5V), just roughly half the energy capacity of an AA. They both have plenty of uses, though. It’s the weird sizes like button cells and N cells (car alarm remotes) that can be a little annoying to track down.

        • Oh, yeah, I remember those specialty sizes. Does Batteries Plus still exist? I mean, we saw what happened to RadioShack…

          • Amazon is the easy answer, but local hardware stores typically have a pretty good selection, too.

        • Yeah, those are annoying. I think the last time I had to get a specialty-type battery, I was able to order it online from Home Depot for in-store pickup.

          • AAA are hardly specialty batteries, it’s easily the most common size battery in my house. You can buy them anywhere you can buy any kind of battery — pharmacy, grocery store, hardware store, wherever.

          • Anonther, I was replying to sproc’s comment “It’s the weird sizes like button cells and N cells (car alarm remotes) that can be a little annoying to track down.” AAA batteries are indeed widely available — no quibble on that front.

    • Emmaleigh504

      It drieves me insane that my 2 remotes take different sized batteries. Standardzation!

  • justinbc

    Rave: PoPville HH coming up this Thursday at Bluejacket! If you missed the official HH on Friday, here’s your second chance. If you were there, here’s your chance to imbibe even more!
    Rave: Picking up kittens on Friday. Almost have the house Savannah-climbing-proofed, just a few more things to put away.

  • Neither Rant nor Rave- but is there any update on the owner of Lil’ Miss Whiskey’s dog Vaughn? Is it still in the shelter? I keep seeing those #FreeVaughn posters all over the place. Breaks my heart to think that dog is still stuck in the pound.

  • Rant: People who know how to read but prefer to call me and ask me questions than to research.
    Rave: no longer living on the redline.
    Hey it’s not Monday anymore!! Coffee all around!

    • Rant #2: Apartment flooded last night. I cleaned it up and it’s fine, but the cat went all walking around and got upset that her toes were wet and decided to walk all over me. Because misery loves company at 3am.

      • Out of curiosity, why did your apartment get flooded? Our building always has apartments flooding due to improperly maintained PTAC units. I think PTAC floods are the number one reason insurance claims are made for rental units. Totally preventable if the building staff is cleaning them each year and checking the condensate lines.

        • I live in a not well maintained (but ridiculously cheap) basement apartment. Apparently the monsoon last night was so strong we had 3 feet of standing water at the back door, and it was leaking in the sides. After about 20 minutes it drained and I was able to open the door and sweep most of the water out.

          It’s also done this since I’ve moved in, and I don’t have anything touching the floor / haven’t lost anything. This apartment is not for the weak at heart, and I’ve done a number of low cost repairs to keep it livable and not deal with the landlord.

        • Oh no! As someone who also lived in a basement apartment that flooded twice in the year we were there (where the floors were replaced once), I can relate. Very stressful! Hope it wasn’t too bad for you. Flooded apartments, whether PTAC related or basement apartment related, seem to be a common thing around here!

    • That One Guy

      Happens to me all the time with one person. I find myself asking what’s the point of writing notes when you’re too lazy to read them and thinking: stop trying to be spoon fed.

  • That One Guy

    Rave: Linen. So much cooler.
    Rave: Remembered to put sun screen on my head. (Bald head + sun = the bad)
    Rant: So many dress shirts that need laundering (45+/-). Need to stop procrastinating.
    Rave: Ice coffee. 3x caffeine, yes please.

  • Blithe

    Rant: Why are there mosquitoes?!!! Why? Why?!!!!!! And why do they pick me to chew on? Arghhhh.
    Rant: Right turn on red. We’re just not evolved enough to handle this much decision making responsibly.
    Rave: The Maryland DMV bus: Staffed with cheerful, efficient people. I am delighted to have my tax dollars support this. Yay!
    Icky Rant: Bath oil should not dye the water yellow. Or red. Just: NO! Green and blue are fine though.
    Rave: I’m glad that I live on the same planet and sometimes even in the same city as Ruth Bader Ginsberg and Elizabeth Warren.
    Rave: Popcorn for breakfast: Whole Grains, right?

  • Rave: I slept last night! Thank you, melatonin. I’m feeling like a human being again today.
    Rant: Did not get up in time to go to the gym this morning. This week isn’t starting out well in that department.
    Rave: My dad got results from some additional tests. He doesn’t have brain cancer (wahoo!). Waiting on a PET scan tomorrow to see how/if/where the cancer *has* spread.

  • Rant: my third appointment with Verizon today. Last time they didn’t show up on time so I had to cancel/reschedule.
    Rant: we’re all burned out from this school year. The kids’behavior

    • Rant continued: the kids’ behavior is awful, I’ve lost my patience and my cool with them more than I’d like to admit, and the teachers are all snippy with each other.
      Rave: traveling a fair amount (in the past I was always too broke to go anywhere) – Long Island next weekend, Michigan the day school gets out, and Tel Aviv with my friend in July!

  • Rave: finally wrestled that stupid thermostat into submission.
    Rant: Air conditioning not cold.
    Rave: Follow-up with doctor reveals that — unless I have raging cancer somewhere in my GI tract (find that out Monday)– I’m very unlikely to die soon despite my affection for strong drink and rich food — and my conviction that it’s actually going to the doctor that causes you to contract a terminal disease and die (I may have a correlation/causation problem with that one).
    We’ll see: Naltrexone: Supposed to reduce the urge to drink to a level so low that people like me say: “why bother drinking at all?” I suppose I may as well just become a Mormon or something.

    • If you are serious, make sure they scan your small intestine as well. Cancer there is so rare (unlike stomach and colon, which are common) that they just figure it is something else instead of looking – which is why people, like my friend, aren’t diagnosed with it until it is very advanced and already spread elsewhere.

    • May I ask what the point of that med is? I mean unless it’s a “stop drinking or die” situation…it sounds awful. Ugh. Positive thoughts for feeling better!

      • I believe it was a “stop drinking or Irving Streete’s girlfriend is going to break up with him” scenario.

        • That might be a dramatic reading of the situation (and may be the way I presented it). It has been an issue but she is forgiving. And, it’s something on which we largely agree.

          • Gotcha, that makes sense. Mr. Eggs and I have had to have a few come-to-Jesus talks about our levels of drinking in the last few years, mostly because our bodies don’t process it the way they used to and neither of us really want to deal with the aftermath of the other having too much…so I feel that. Good luck!

      • I’m pretty sure that the GI tests will reveal nothing serious — I have low-grade stomach troubles that I suspect are sending out the red flag. I will inquire, though.
        Oddly, the recent tests revealed that I’m far from a “stop drinking or die” situation — the liver is an amazing thing — but common sense suggests that further building on 30-odd years of hard drinking can’t be good. I’ve seen a lot of people do a lot of damage to themselves, and I’m old enough not to be bulletproof anymore. So I’m happy try spending the price of a two beers and a shot at the Raven to get a month’s supply of chemical willpower and see how that works out. If nothing else, it will certainly be an intriguing experiment.

    • I Dont Get It

      I hope your Dr is monitoring your liver levels along with your Naltrexone.

  • skj84

    Rant: For some reason I keep waking up sick in the middle of the night. Like severe indigestion. It happens if I eat right before I go to bed. I’ve never had this issue before.

    Rant: I feel like I’m stuck in this strange cycle in my job hunt. I’ll get called in for an interview, then a few days later receive a rejection email, and same day get an interview request from a different company. Then the cycle repeats. Its messing with my psyche.

    • Avoid my delicious gazpacho then!
      Re: Job hunt: any idea why you’re not getting the job? Usually companies don’t invite that many in for interviews, which means you are making it pretty far!

      • skj84

        I don’t think I’m interviewing well. I really need to sit down with someone and have a coaching session. I really wish companies would give me feedback. I know its not really their job to do so, but It would help me so much in the job hunt. In the whole job hunt only two companies I interviewed for told me why they didn’t hire me.(Lack of experience, and didn’t think I would fit in the company culture). I really appreciated knowing why I wasn’t hired.

      • I interview well, but often don’t get the job. In my male-dominated fields, not a cultural fit means “not straight white male.” Means “not somebody I want to be my buddy.” There’s nothing I can do about that – I’m not having a sex change to get a job! It is apparently a problem for women in tech, too, from what I read. It is an excuse for illegal discrimination – against women, minorities, gays, anyone they perceive as different in any way. Yeah, I wouldn’t fit in terribly well in those cultures, but I haven’t in most places I’ve worked as a result of gender discrimination, which is rampant, but I still need a job, and I still do great work, which should be more important than being buddies with my manager and his pets. And anyway, it is like this: if htey don’t want to hire you, they say you lack the right experience. If you have such right-on-point experience, they say it is a lack of cultural fit. It is usually all bullshit. You just have to keep interviewing until you meet someone who wants to hire you because 1) they like your experience or skills or you, and aren’t hiring based on buddy bs, or, 2) they really need to hire and you are the best they can find at that moment, which is tough in a bad hiring market like this for many field, or 3) as happened to me once (not knowing your gender) they’re being accused of discrimination and figure they should hire a woman as a defense. If you truly don’t interview well, then there are people who can help you – even your friends as a start – do mock questions – mine have had great feedback. Good luck to us both!

        • skj84

          I have been searching in the tech field, which isn’t the most woman friendly industry. I do feel like I’m swimming upstream.

          • SouthwestDC

            I went through the same thing when I was interviewing for jobs early in my engineering career. I was doing 2 or 3 interviews a week for about four months before I finally got an offer (not counting the one where they decided to offer me a secretarial position instead). Not coming across as “one of the guys” does hurt your chances, but I wouldn’t want to work in a place where that was the culture anyway.

    • You should definitely go to the doctor. My family has heartburn problems, and there is medicine you can get that will repair your esophogus so you don’t have to take it forever. (Also, have you had a change in diet? I rarely have severe heartburn in the U.S. but both times I’ve lived in Korea — BOOM, terrible heartburn all the time.)

      • I started having issues with that lately. I stopped eating dinner late in the evening, and it went away. Food needs to digest before we lie down. I try to eat a large late lunch, and less later, and before 7:00. Read something by a doc that said that this (eating late) was at the cause of most of his patient’s reflux problems, but they want medication instead. Bonus: stopped drinking wine with almost very dinner, too, as a result of not wanting to drink earlier, and not having a big meal. Don’t miss it with this new eating plan.

        • That’s a very good point, although not always the case. I always eat really early, around 5 or 6 — but things like sesame oil, garlic, and onions started causing me grief when I was awake. Never had a problem before. These things just happen sometimes.

        • skj84

          I’ve been getting home late(10ish) and usually scarf down a meal. What I’m eating probably isn’t helping either. I’ll try grab dinner on the early side if I can.

  • Rant: Cranky start to the day due to the 12 minute wait for a green line train in the middle of rush hour.
    Rave: At least I’m not on the red line.
    Rant: General post-race soreness seems to have settled into concentrated hamstring pain– which is pretty unusual for me. I hope I didn’t pull something.
    Rant: The Bachelorette dragged on and on last night and was generally more cringe worthy than usual.

  • That One Guy

    Questions: (the potato edition)
    Do you like flat potato chip or ones with ridges? Does you answer change if we’re talking about french fries?
    What is your favorite potato chip flavor?
    Do you ever not eat a potato chip because it’s partially black?
    Do you ever smell you chips before eating them? (Had to ask to round out the 5 senses)

    • I’ll eat any chip that is salt & vinegar flavored.

    • (45 shirts!)
      Ridged potato chips are a marketing ploy and an affectation. Plus, makes them too thick.
      Crinkle cut fries are the best.
      The only flavoring worth considering is BBQ, though — like sex — pretty much all potato chips are pretty good.

    • Flat potato chips. The ridged ones hurt my tongue and the roof of my mouth…?
      Dill pickle flavored potato chips! Nom.
      I do leave the partially black ones sometimes but I don’t smell them unless it’s a weird flavor (like wasabi ginger).

    • Ridges for chips and fries.
      Sour cream and onion
      I’ll eat around the black part.
      No…why is that a thing?

    • Flat, unless they’re plain and eaten alongside a grilled hotdog or burger. Then ridges are slightly better for some reason (more festive?). I suppose I prefer straight cut fries, unless there’s a waffle fry option. Salt and vinegar is the best flavor for chips although BBQ can sometimes be good (depends on the brand).

    • skj84

      I prefer ridges to flat. Better scooping. Weirdly enough I’m not huge fan of crinkle cut fries. Its a texture thing. I like my fries crisp.
      I’m simple when it comes to chip flavors. Plain ruffles or sour cream and onion. But not just any sour cream and onion. Herrs is my preference.

    • My favorite chips, are either kettle cooked jalapeno flavored or ruffles ridged sour cream and cheddar. I prefer crunchy chips. But alas I shall eat any chip for I’ve never met a chip I didn’t like…….to eat.

      • oh and favorite fries, seasoned curly fries, especially the ones from Arby’s. Luckily they serve them at the looking glass.
        In order it goes:
        1. Seasoned curly fries
        2. Seasoned waffle fries
        3. Crinkle cut extra crispy
        4. regular

        • I Dont Get It

          OMG Arby’s curly fries!!!!!

          • justinbc

            When I was a kid I used to crush Arby’s curly fries with a cup of that fake cheese goop almost weekly.

          • YES! the cup of cheez is a must. I think the looking glass also has cheez goop

          • when I go to Ikea in college park I must have Arby’s too 🙁

          • Where’s the Arby’s in College Park? (Or is it further north, like in Beltsville or something?)

          • It’s about 3 blocks north of Ikea on Baltimore Ave. Maybe it’s technically not College Park but it’s by Ikea College Park so for me it’s in college park.

          • Ahh. Maybe I will check it out next time I’m at IKEA (though hitherto I’ve had no special affinity for Arby’s).
            I think IKEA is at the very northern end of College Park — sort of like how the Petworth Metro is at the very southern end of Petworth. It’s possible that IKEA might even be in unincorporated PG County, but with a College Park address.

    • Blithe

      Kettle Chips black pepper, Utz barbecue ridges. Ridges rule! Unless the’re made from scratch.

    • justinbc

      Route 11 Mama Zuma’s Revenge would be my favorite. The salt & fresh ground black pepper Kettle Chips would probably be the most consumed.

    • I typically don’t get down with flavored chips (the smell of sour cream and chive anything makes me gag) but Route 11 Chesapeake Crab chips are the bizness. Flat plain chips for almost everything except brats, when for some reason ridges taste better. I don’t eat black chips, in my family, we call them charps.

      Fries: a well done crinkle cut fry (like Portillo’s….Lord have mercy) is all I’ll ever need

    • 1) Ridges
      2) Sour cream and cheddar
      3) No
      4) No

    • Potato chips with ridges but straight cut (and extra crispy) fries
      Cheddar and sour cream (but not sour cream and onion), or barbeque
      I eat the dark parts (never particularly notice them as they’re covered with artificial cheese powder)

    • For all of you who said Kettle Chips, google “Klacko Chip Settlement”.

      • justinbc

        Nice, I like free money.

        • Not as much as I like Arby’s curly fries with whateverthehellthatis sauce (weaving in discussion from above). Pair it whatever that roast beef-like meat was (also with “cheese” sauce, and it’s a great lunch. OK, it’s awful, but I have fond memories of it, like minute steaks.

          • justinbc

            Yeah, I used to always get their French Dip with it. Until the changed the au jus to be thick like gravy rather than thin and better for bun soaking.

    • Emmaleigh504

      Flat and flat
      tie: crawtator; dill
      yes ditto with green ones
      no, but I shake the bag

  • Mug of Glop

    Rave: Fun wedding this past weekend!
    Rant: In Michigan…
    Rant: Ugh, allergies.
    Rave: Claritin-D
    Rant: Stupid hot weather.
    Rave: College/grad school friend is in town this week for some sort of conference! Sounds like hang-out time for me!
    Rave/Rant: Still undecided about doing the Army 10 Miler. It’s just two weeks before MCM. I’m thinking that’s a terrible idea…

    • “Rave/Rant: Still undecided about doing the Army 10 Miler. It’s just two weeks before MCM. I’m thinking that’s a terrible idea…”
      What’s your thinking on that? Conventional marathon-training wisdom would say it’s a good idea, as long as you get your final long run (i.e. ~20 miles) done the week before that.

      • Mug of Glop

        Yeah, my “standard” taper for the long run is 20 > 13 > 10 > marathon (for the two I’ve done already). I’m worried that I’ll try to take the race out too fast and strain myself too hard or injure myself in such a way that I won’t be able to properly handle the main event of the MCM. After the GW Parkway Classic I was a bit too sore to go immediately back into my training schedule, so I’m somewhat hesitant.

        The other reason is that a few of my friends are doing the Ironman race that same weekend, and I sort of want to go out there and spend the whole weekend drinking bourbon while they toil away. I guess I have about a half hour left to decide…

    • I’m absolutely doing both. They’re fun races and a great environment. A two week gap is plenty if you’re on glide slope for a full marathon. Heck, even if they were just a week apart, I’d probably just take it easy and enjoy it as a 10mi training run.
      The only thing would maybe make me skip ATM is if I did the Wilson Bridge Half instead on Oct 4th, but ATM is just such an awesome crowd.

  • Rave: dog is well on her way to mastering “go to your spot (crate)” managed to get her to do that and keep her in the crate all night. no, she’s not crated while I’m way. We got a good workout in this morning, so I’m hoping for the best.
    Rave: back to back swim days. the warm weather really puts me in the mood to be active. going to add yoga and spin to the routine. that and walking the dog at least an hour a day, I’m feeling good about my fitness.
    Question: how does one prepare a dog to be in an off-leash dog park? Is there a special training class for that? I would like to check out the small dog section of the Shaw dog park. My dog is much calmer off-leash if that makes a difference.

    • I haven’t heard of a class, but maybe try to go very late / very early when the park is empty to see how she does?

    • I’d also recommend going when the park is quiet. If you go to Shaw on the early side on Sat/Sun mornings (right at 8 am), you get a couple of regulars who have dogs who are used to the park and who will induct your dog.

  • phl2dc

    Rant: tummy ache
    Rant: headache
    Question: Is there a way to get notifications when someone replies to your comments?
    Rave: potable water

    • justinbc

      No way that I know of.

      • Yeah… as far as I know, the only option to receive notifications is if you start (or comment on) a post in the Forum section. I don’t think the Forum section gets anywhere near as much traffic as RRRR, though.

  • Rave: Props to the girl riding her bike south on 1st street NW last night for calling me a F’ing A-hole when I beeped at the two bike riders in front of me to get out of the way while we were travelling north…..I appreciate you looking out for other bike riders….even when they are on my softball team and i was just messing with them.

  • jim_ed

    Rant: Today’s column from Petula Dvorak in the Post is so, so, so awful that I want to call the Post and yell at someone about it. It drives me nuts that in today’s shrinking newspaper market a primo job is wasted on a talentless hack like her. How can a paper of note like WaPo justify employing such generally awful columnists? It makes my brain lock up and I go cross eyed any time I think too deeply about it.
    Rave: Hoping all the rain last night washes away the pollen so I can actually breathe again. Also, Bryce Harper.

    • +1000000 I hate hate hate Petula Dvorak and the ridiculous columns she writes and the WaPo continues to publish. I refuse to read her columns anymore so I don’t know what drivel she wrote this time but I can only imagine.

    • Totally agree with your rant. I’d add Courtland Milloy too. I stopped clicking on their articles, just so I won’t contribute to justifying their jobs at the Post.

      • jim_ed

        Milloy is an awful, cliche spouting troll, but at least with him, I understand he has a target audience in the “Native Washingtonians who became middle class and moved to Mitchellville but still want to complain about changes in a city they long ago abandoned” demographic, which is large and influential in our metro area. But Petula? Who the hell is her target demo? I’ve never once met someone who enjoys her work, across the broad spectrum of people in town I know. I just don’t get what justifies her seemingly secure perch of cranking out hot garbage takes.
        Then again, I’ve been baffled by the Post’s choice of columnists as long as I’ve been reading it. They’re almost all terrible, from the aforementioned local columnists, to the cranky old white man screeds in Sports by Kornheiser and Feinstein, to the totally discredited neocon chickenhawks in Opinion. I foolishly hoped that Bezos buying the paper would do away with these dinosaurs of the Graham era, but clearly that hasn’t been the case.

        • Gene Weingarten is great, but I agree that overall the talent of Washington Post writers has declined. I miss film critics Stephen Hunter and Desson (Howe) Thomson — Ann Hornaday’s film reviews always seem like softballs.

        • saf

          Boswell is great. I still miss Marc Fisher. I loved Donna Britt. And Eric Brace. And Eve Ziebert.

          • jim_ed

            I do love Boswell’s writing, even if it is blatantly homerific occasionally. He’s also the best live-chatter at the Post, despite his complete inability to spell more than three words correctly in any given sentence.

          • Agree about Boswell, though I am partial to the Fix as the best live chatter (and Boz is blatantly homerific a lot more than occasionally). Also miss Marc Fisher.
            As far as writing goes, leaving content COMPLETELY aside, I love George Will’s writing.

    • That One Guy

      In years past I would have said to call the ombudsman but I believe they did away with that position so you should just post something on social media and hash tag her. See if you get any traction. Then again you can call her to complain.

    • If you’re referring to her column yesterday (I can’t find one for today), I am in agreement 100%. It was disgusting. Her theories were asinine. And to even consider analyzing this supposed “schadenfreude” in a column when those poor people haven’t even been buried yet. My god.

      • jim_ed

        That’s the one. Disgusting is a good way to describe. The column still would have been dumb had it been written about the Kardashians, but to use a recently murdered family as your cudgel with such a flippant tone was just completely tasteless and tone deaf. When your thesis boils down to “Hey, this family was just brutally murdered, what’s so special about them?” you should probably crumple up the paper and start over.

  • Rant: Didn’t sleep well. Cats did not love the storm, they were either running around like mad cats or laying on top of my face for soothing (which I not so secretly love)
    Rant: Have been out of our house since March (burst pipe in Feb), I don’t want to call out our contractor on PoP but needless to say I’m NOT happy. They keep missing deadlines, they keep saying that they’ll work on weekends, they don’t. I miss my house. I question home ownership.
    Rave: long weekend, I see you, get here already!

  • Rant: Former LF kept messaging me yesterday ranging from flipping out to buttering me up. She finally stopped once I told her I was seeing other the people the whole time.
    Rant: My buddy is busy this weekend, so I might have to go out alone. I’m cool with it, but it’s more fun with friends.
    Rave: Call back for a job I applied to yesterday. Hopefully an interview will follow.

    • Take that, LF. You know you can always go out with your PoP friends! Best of luck with the interview!

      • The whole thing left me slightly more confused than before, but it was all for the best. Better to find out her true colors now than months from now. I really didn’t want to burst her bubble, but she seemed to think I cared a lot more than I did. I was annoyed at first and moved on.
        Not that I cannot go out with straight women (I have and had fun), but I’m trying to befriend more queer ladies, and the queer pop ladies showed me going out is not something they’re into. HH will likely never work for me unless I’m injured and unable to hit the gym.
        Thanks. Fingers crossed!

        • I have to say, I have absolutely no idea how much you cared for her. For a while, you did seem like you were pretty distraught about the hiatus (based purely on my interpretation of your PoP writings, which probably doesn’t give an accurate picture), which implies a level of affection you seem to be disavowing now.

          • Agreed with dcd.
            In any event, I’m sorry to hear that things didn’t work out.

          • I disliked the hiatus because I thought we had a good connection across the board, but the rekindle was lacking and different, and I planned a discussion before going on vacation next week. I gave her the benefit of the doubt that her being different after the rekindle may have been the more real version as opposed to someone on the rebound.
            After the break-off things went weird. Same night she offered to meet my friend even though she had effectively dumped me; sent me a page long text apologizing after that, telling me how great I am; and she swung wildly from screaming at me for asking her to cover the tix she offered to buy to telling me she liked me and wanted to be my friend and buy the tix. I definitely liked her and enjoyed the dates I planned, but my expectations were not being met, and the break-off would have happened next week anyway.

          • I don’t like to say this, because I’ve never meant either one of you, but she sounds like a wreck. Count your blessings.

    • Anonynon

      yikes sounds like you dropped a bomb shell on her….what was her reaction?

      • No reaction discerned since it was text, but she stopped trying to converse with me immediately thereafter, so I’m gathering she wasn’t pleased. We were very clear about this being casual dating only, so there was only her wishful thinking if she thought something else.

  • Rant: Redline this morning. Had to change at Fort Totten to get to work via the Green Line.
    Rant: Tomorrow I have an all day meeting in Rockville that ends at 4:30 and I need to be in class at L’Enfant Plaza at 6. No time for me to drive, get dinner along the way and get to class on time.
    Rave: My mother is coming to visit me next week. She wants to see the National Mall and do some shopping, both of which I can do easily.
    Rave: I made plans for my summer vacation in late July which lifted my spirits.
    Rave: Read last night about battling my depression and felt better afterwards.
    Rant: Feel like a total dunce for not know this sooner.
    Rave: The weather this morning. Liked feeling the breeze.

  • Rant: Plane arrived 3 hours late last night at the wrong airport (Dulles, not National) due to weather. I still don’t have my checked suitcase.
    Rant: Apparently our pup was a total terror for the kind friend of ours who watched him while we were away. We didn’t realize he had discipline issues and now we do. I guess we have a lot of work to do. (Although we like him just as he is, even if he can be a stubborn little bastard sometimes.)
    Rave: Back in DC after nine days away and having a great trip. I always miss it here when I’m gone!

    • Blithe

      Maybe your pup’s issues are more about abandonment than about discipline. You left him for over a week — and he had no way of knowing when or if you’d ever be back, and maybe reacted accordingly. And, of course, you can’t send most pets reassuring texts, letting them know that you’ll be back soon. Good luck with however you decide to handle this!

      • It’s totally possible. We also don’t have him on a firm schedule or have commands for bodily functions — we know his rhythms and signs well without having to give commands — and I think this is a challenge when others watch him. We might need to work on these commands because they are a good things to teach a dog in any case. There’s nothing to lose there. That said, I agree that could could have been off-kilter because of abandonment concerns, along with the change in scenery and the presence of another competing pup.

        • Emmaleigh504

          I love Victoria’s use of a doorbell to be let out. When I can have a dog I’m totally doing that.

          • I think the bell idea is great. When my ex and I had a dog in our place in Atlanta, she would always head to the front door and jump against it when she needed to go.

          • It’s an awesome idea. I need to carve out some time to work on this. The pup, husband and I all enjoy training like this but it’s our own lack of discipline (and time) that’s holding us back.

        • I will recommend “get busy” for #1. I feel a lot less silly telling my dog to “get busy” than alternatives. I haven’t been able to think of a non-silly alternative for #2 yet.

          • I like that! I’ve also heard “hurry up” is a good one because it doesn’t make you actually have to talk about #2 🙂

  • Rave: Cooler weather coming tomorrow! Supposedly humidity will start dying down later today! (I’m choosing to ignore the muggy crap from this morning).
    Rave: Kiddo’s first part-day in the two’s room went great. Fingers crossed for a smooth transition between classrooms!
    Rave: Friends coming to visit this weekend! Can’t wait to see them!
    Rant: they’re not staying with us because of extended family jealousy issues. so they need to spend money on a hotel and we can’t hang out after kids are in bed.
    Rave: hotel has a pool. so that should be fun.
    Rant: may need to update an analysis before submitting a paper for publication because a coauthor has been SO SLOW to get back to me over the last 18 months. Argh. This could take weeks….

    • What are the extended family jealousy issues — who’s jealous of whom, and why?

      • mostly a tenuous relationship between extended family that live in the DC area & our friends–and said family member would be upset if our friends stay with us instead of her (despite her house not having enough space for our friends’ family and not being even remotely child-friendly). It’s a longstanding issue that flares up at times.

    • I Dont Get It

      Does the extended family issues involve poop?*

      *Yes I know I need to move on.

  • Rant: Aphids and caterpillars. Both are in love with my kale. I have been catching and releasing the caterpillars but all the aphids must die.
    Rave: Dinner last night involved herbs and vegetables from my own garden (Yay!)
    Rave: Finally got around to watching the US Women’s National Team vs. Mexico game (soccer) from Sunday night. Dang that was a good game. I’m starting to get really excited for the Women’s World Cup this summer.
    Rant: Just realized that I will be at my parents’ house for yet another World Cup (was there for last year’s Men’s World Cup). I suck at planning.

  • Rant: I was planning to attend my Police Service Area’s quarterly meeting tomorrow…but then I found out that there’s a one-off screening of an interesting-looking French film at the Avalon at the same time. I feel a little guilty about the idea of choosing the fun option over the civic-responsibility one… but I don’t get out to the movies anywhere near as often as I used to.
    Rant: Tired all of a sudden. Caffeine, please kick in now!
    Rant: Incompetent installation company used by Home Depot to install a product I bought from them.
    Rave: Successfully exchanged a dead knockout rose for a brand-new one at Home Depot last night.

    • justinbc

      For all of the complaints I’ve had about the HD in DC in the past, they seemed to have increased their customer service skills a good bit over the past year. Granted, the returns area was always one of the easiest to deal with, as they seemingly DGAF what you’re bringing back or why, but in general the employees seem much more pleasant and helpful than in the past.

      • I ended up doing the return at Home Depot in College Park, actually. I wanted the replacement knockout rose to be a white/ivory one rather than a red one, and went to three Home Depots (first D.C., then Hyattsville, then College Park) trying to find one before giving up and taking a red one.
        My experience at the returns counter at the Home Depot in D.C. has been mixed — usually not terrible, but often not very good either. The staff often seem sullen.

    • HaileUnlikely

      I agree with Justin regarding improvements in in-store customer service and ease of returns, however, my experience has been similar to yours regarding installation. In general, I have found that their installation service is considerably cheaper than hiring even an unlicensed handyman to perform the same work, and I suspect there is a reason why they are so cheap…
      Just out of curiosity, what was it that they did the incompetent install on?

      • justinbc

        I’ve never used their installation services, good to know.

      • They used a Maryland-based company for the installation of a water heater in my condo. (Get in touch with me via Dan if you want the company’s name.) That company screwed up the installation in what seems in retrospect to be a pretty glaring way* if you’re at all familiar with water heaters. (I’m somewhat familiar now, but unfortunately I wasn’t then, so I didn’t notice there was anything wrong.) And thus the DCRA inspector failed the installation.
        * They put the pressure relief valve (long copper tube that ends maybe 6″ above floor level) in the back, so it wasn’t visible… which meant that if water was coming out of it, it would be difficult for the user to tell.
        I had to get the company to come back to fix the problem. Then when I tried to arrange a reinspection through them, they said that DCRA said that the inspection had passed. I told them that the DCRA inspector said it hadn’t, and that the form he left behind said it hadn’t. They insisted that they couldn’t schedule a reinspection because DCRA said the job had been passed. I called the inspector, who confirmed that it had indeed failed. It began feeling like a “Who’s On First?” sketch.
        My guess was that someone at DCRA hit a wrong key and incorrectly entered the wrong information into their computer system regarding the pass vs. fail. But the company had no interest in sorting this out with DCRA, which I found really annoying because it was their glaring screwup that was responsible for the installation job not passing in the first place.

        • How did you get an inspection by DCRA? Was this in new construction? I didn’t think they came out for simple replacements.

          • Apparently the replacement of a water heater requires a permit and — after the installation — an inspection.

      • Also, although the company gave an estimate of the installation cost (specifically, a range from lowest to highest), the actual price they ended up charging was outside of that range — it was 33% above the _top_ end of the range.

      • BTW, re. installation cost: The installation cost more than the water heater itself. 🙁

  • I Dont Get It

    Random: I need to have my 15 year old central a/c system serviced. Does anyone have a deal they can recommend?

    • justinbc

      I use CoolBreeze out of MD every year. They are reliable and usually have some pre-summer coupon up on their site.

    • We use Moran’s – generally get the service plan, which provides spring and fall service and (more importantly) puts you at the top of the service list on the 90 degree day when your (and everyone else’s) AC goes on the fritz.

  • Rant: People who think my job is super easy because I just “play with a bunch of kids”, “work from 7-2”, and have “3 months off for summer”. I’ve cut a lot of people who say that out of my life, but it still comes up occasionally.

    • Seriously? Small people are hard work! Especially a whole class of them with varying abilities that you’re trying to teach to a particular benchmark. And throw all the testing and red tape madness into the mix, and it’s a wonder we have any teachers at all. Blargh.

    • They’re most likely just jealous and projecting. I can’t remember the last time I had more than a week off at a time, so the thought of 1-3 months off sounds like a dreamland. Whereas I’m sure the actually job is NOT!

      • Probably – I’m actually only getting 7 weeks off this summer (I know, so terrible), but the rest of the year I only get 4 personal days. Spring/winter breaks are often some combination of resting and prepping for once school starts again. I don’t want to make myself out to be a martyr or anything…I just think the (unpaid) summer makes it worth the sh*t we put up with the rest of the year (working well beyond contracted hours and being everybody’s scapegoat).

        • Yup, and any random stuff that needs to get done (dr appointments, other personal business) HAS to get put off until the summer since that the only time you can get those things done. Can you tell my mom is a teacher? 😉

  • Rave: Interview for a fantastic job today
    Rant: I hear there is a favored candidate and it would entail some massive personal life changes/discussions.
    Rave: Went swimming last night for first time in a while – didn’t drown and managed to keep up with two friends training for triathlons.

  • Rave: being privileged and having easy access to high quality medical care. Not worrying about financial ruin from said medical care. I can’t imagine how terrifying it is when you’re in pain, know you probably can’t afford it, and the ER admin says “your insurance company will contact you about whatever isn’t covered.”
    Rave: having caring friends and family
    Rave: being fine, just feeling like junk
    Question: say you had a first date, after work, evening, and couldn’t drink, what would you suggest for an activity?
    Rants: I don’t have any of those

    • I hope you’re feeling a bit better at least and am glad that you’re well supported and have good insurance! Re: your question, I see no problem with going to a bar and ordering a festive mocktail of some kind. As long as you’re comfortable with it and can put the other person at ease if they want to drink, I don’t think it’s a big deal. Or you could take a walk to some part of the city you don’t usually see or a favorite place (monuments? Phillips after 5?)

      • +1. Particularly if you’re usually inclined to have a drink during a date–probably gives you bonus points if you’re able to put the guy at ease if he wants to have a drink. Agreed also that no reasonable person will have an issue with your reasoning for temporarily abstaining.
        That said–I’ll let you know if I think of something out of the box that would work. Sometimes being forced to do something different allows for something more creative. Picnic near the tidal basin, followed by a walk through the monuments? Those are absolutely lovely at night.

    • When your doctor says “any alcohol while on this make you *violently* ill” you don’t “suck it up.” I feel like medication compliance, especially with regards to antibiotics, should be taught in schools. Or just maybe more science.
      I agree, a drink or two is usually de rigueur, but I don’t feel like postponing and I doubt a week without me drinking is a problem for this guy (or any reasonable person).

    • Hope you’re feeling okay.

      Re: the date, go for (decaf) tea and cookies?

    • ….

      Oh jeez. You can absolutely go on a first date without drinking.

      I’ve had successful froyo or other dessert first dates. You can also go somewhere for drinks that has good non-alcoholic drinks– like fancy sodas or juice concoctions.

      Glad to hear you’re on the mend, jeslett.

    • Emmaleigh504

      ice cream. Ice cream is appropriate for any occasion, any time of day.

      • This is true. My coworkers generally find me at the bar after a conference– with ice cream and no alcohol.

        • Lol, this reminds me of going to Friendly’s for sundaes as a kid. Not sure why since that’s not a bar. But yummy memory–more places need to have peanut butter sauce.

          • Peanut butter sauce is the most underrated ice cream topping EVER! They have it at that Menchies place at 12th and U.

          • Seriously? I’ll need to check that out. I’ve never been there. Oh how I love peanut butter sauce.

    • Hope you’re feeling better soon Jeslett!
      How about something like the Harmon Happy Hours (shakespearetheatre. org) or a place where you can sit outside and listen to music (military bands? Ft Reno?)

    • Dinner seem like the most obvious answer to me: it doesn’t require drinking anything at all if you don’t want, it can be as casual or as fancy as you like, and if it’s after work you’re going to need to eat at some point.

    • Completely agree with all of those above who say first dates can totally be done without drinking. Some of my best first dates have been ones where no alcohol was involved.
      Do you drink tea? Maybe a tea house (Ching Ching Cha) or some kind of bakery? (Dinner would work too, but sometimes I think that’s too much for a first date, it really depends on the situation and your feelings towards dinners on first dates.)

      • Teaism is nice too, the one in Chinatown has more space – I’ve gone there a lot for dates. I do love Ching Ching Cha, haven’t been there in years…
        Hope you feel better soon, Jeslett!! 🙁

    • If you’re used to having a drink in your hand on first dates, I can definitely understand the hesitation in being on one without it. It may be somewhat like a smoker needing something in their hands – just get something, anything, to drink so you have that happening. Founding Farmer’s used to have a fabulous blood orange soda that I highly recommend (if they still have it, it’s been a while).

    • Thanks for the well wishes folks!
      And I agree, dates don’t need to have drinking, though it’s pretty common. And honestly, it’s a lazy option because it doesn’t require much thinking or proposing something that might seem too different. I’m thinking on it, I have no problem if he drinks and I don’t, as long as it’s not too much.
      And I totally agree that ice cream is appropriate at all times. I bought all the ingredients to make salted caramel ice cream, but I’m too icky to stand over the stove making caramel. Good thing Haagen Dazs is on sale at Safeway this week 🙂

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: Going to see family I do not like tomorrow.
    Rave: Some family I like will be there too. They can be my buffer.
    Rave: Monster Ballads

    • Emmaleigh504

      Bonus Rave: It’s probably the last time I will ever see that part of the family.

    • Monster Ballads hahahahahahahaaaaaa

    • Cueing up my “Wind of Change” station on Pandora right now . . .

      • Emmaleigh504

        that song drives me bananas! WindS of Change or Wind of ChangeS! There needs to be a plural in there!

        • English isn’t their first language. 🙂
          I confess, I initially wrote WindS of Change, googled it, and revised. Which makes me ridiculous, I know.

          • I totally thought it was “Winds of Change.” I guess my mind automatically made the correction.

          • Emmaleigh504

            I know it’s not their first language, but a committtee of people worked on that song before it got released. Someone should have said somthing!

  • Rave: No potato chips at home so I’m making an inside out grilled cheese sandwich. All the calories, all the cheese
    Rant: Pup is limping occasionally, I think she took a tumble down the stairs in her rush to bark at the mail carrier. I”m giving her low dose of aspirin to see if the limp goes away. Really hoping it does, because she’ll be turned over to a dog sitter this week

    • And a big rave: Realizing I was out of Ambion and facing a 13+ hour flight on Thursday (along with two other shorter flights), I emailed my NP asking her to authorize a refill. She responded right away to say the prescription had been authorized. She is wonderful!

      • Emmaleigh504

        do you take the ambien on the plane? I thought of doing that for one of my 12 hour flights, but was afraid Ambien Walrus would visit.

        • Ambien Walrus?

        • Emilie I’ll take a half dose (5 mg), and only if my potential sleep time is 4 hours or longer.

          • Emmaleigh504

            Sounds like a good way to do it. If I ever have another 12 hour flight I’ll give the 1/2 does a go. Ambien Walrus doesn’t visit when I’m in my bed, but I was afraid he would come since I wasn’t in bed. And I was traveling with my parents so I was super afraid he would make me say or do horrible things. I have an image to uphold with them!

    • Fingers crossed for your pup’s limp going away!
      And good luck with the long flight (and the two short ones). I remember being on a 14-hour flight to Japan, having trouble sleeping, and thinking at the seven-hour mark, “OMG, this flight is only halfway over.”

      • Textdoc some years ago I was traveling from Fiji back to the US with a not-short layover in Sydney. And I remember being excited when it was less than 24 hours left (and then landing in LA and thinking “Almost home!”)

  • RAVE: weekend trip to Las Vegas to see “Weird Al” Yankovic, with flight/hotel/food/tickets paid for by contest. Las Vegas is as close as one can get – anywhere on Earth – to a scene truly straight out of a Hiernoymous Bosch painting. It’s like purgatory.

    RAVE: the storm last night, and watching it from my roof at 11:00, loving the light and the light pummeling of the rain. All was well and good until a lightning bolt struck what seemed like just a few feet away from me. It felt like the bolt was in my skull, and my senses were entirely and monetarily obliterated; just white light and the bolt itself. It was almost instantly followed by a huge crack of thunder that felt like it was right over my head, and then instinct kicked in and I ran back inside with the after-image of the lightning bolt still dominating my vision.

  • valentina

    Rave: The Tiny Kittens live webcam has taken over my life. Sqweeee

  • Emmaleigh504

    I guess I’m juvenile b/c I’d rather an ice cream date to a bar date (with or without drinks) any day.

    • +1 to this. It is not juvenile. If anything, I appreciate people way more when we can have a first or second date without drinking — it says: “Hey everyone! I’m mature enough to recognize that two people can have a conversation even if its awkward and look at each other without beer goggles and then decide if we’re still interested!”

      • Emmaleigh504

        boozy milkshakes are a happy median 🙂 But yeah, not eveyone drinks, and it’s nice to do things that don’t require drinks. Just like it’s nice to do things that do require drinks (if you drink) sometimes. Moderation in everything (except ice cream).

        • My comments keep getting deleted (PoP is pro-dairy I assume), so I’ll just be non-specific and say I respectfully disagree about the boozy milkshakes and ice cream being appropriate for a date. 🙂

          • I’ll bite out of pure curiosity. What makes them inappropriate to you?

          • I get your concern, but most ice cream places have sorbet or other non dairy options.
            Plus, I think it’s reasonable to ask and you can answer however you want. Yeah, most people in the world are lactose intolerant, but I don’t see a problem with asking someone out for frozen treats.

          • Also, it’s not fair to make someone eat sorbet. That stuff is gross. 🙂

          • What???? I LOVE sorbet!!!

          • Oh, well that makes it trickier.
            Ben and Jerry’s used to make a purple passion fruit sorbet, it was the stuff dreams and unicorn hooves are made of.

        • justinbc

          I’ve never found boozy milkshakes to be all that good. I never taste the alcohol in a pleasant way, it’s not enough to actually have any effect, and it screws up the taste of the ice cream. These things should remain segregated.

      • +1 to this comment and to Emilie’s original one.

    • I don’t think anyone is saying that someone who wants a drink or two on a date has a problem. I think people are just saying that it’s nice to go on dates where you don’t need to have drinks to have a good time.

    • Emmaleigh504

      My response was to a comment that has been deleted. I’m not judging people who like drinks, I”m just spreading the joy of ice cream! 🙂 No judgement from me.

      • Yeah, but there are so many things you can do that don’t involve alcohol that are sexier or more glamorous or more fun.

      • Lol–someone my response to that comment got deleted & yours didn’t. That said I still don’t understand why ice cream is juvenile.

      • I didn’t take it as judging. I appreciate it actually. I am not a big drinker. I can drink and do, but I can also do without it. When dating, I am ambivalent to drinks. I usually only have one drink when I go out. Social drinking.

    • Sorry if I sounded like I was judging. I’m not. I like drinking just as much as other people. But I think that the perks of not drinking — especially in this town — are often overlooked. (And also some people really can’t drink for whatever reason, and it must suck for them when so many people only seem interested in getting drinks.)

    • Agreed–don’t think anyone is judging those who like to have drinks on a date (or whenever). However, sometimes people don’t want to–or can’t–drink, and it can be nice to take the opportunity to do something creative with that inspiration. And in this case, you came across as pretty judgy/obnoxious by suggesting that someone–who had clearly just been in the hospital, and therefore it isn’t a big leap to figure out the not drinking relates to that experience–“suck it up” and have a drink anyways or that the person needs to reschedule to a time when drinking is possible because heaven for fend that you have a date without a drink. And yes, in case it wasn’t clear, I am being judgy here.

    • That One Guy – can your next poll be about ice cream preferences? I have a feeling there will be a lot of opinions!

      • so hard to pick! I guess it comes back to Friendly’s…. I love their butter crunch. Just like butter pecan, but crunchy caramelly bits instead of nuts so they don’t break up the consistency of the ice cream as much. Oh right–you weren’t asking yet. Oops.

        • Their watermelon roll was the best thing ever when I was little. I’d probably still be pretty good if I had it again now.

          • Oh yeah–those are delicious! And you can get them in the grocery store. I also like the orange-themed ones that have white chocolate chips for the seeds. Yum….

    • I’d prefer that too.

  • I giggle on the inside every time the chain of comments gets all wonky when something gets deleted.

  • That One Guy

    For whatever it’s worth I’m voting that the next HH be at an ice cream shop/parlor. #TeamIceCream4Lyfe

    I can’t follow what you guys are talking about. Late to the show as always.
    Back to soul crushing work.

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