Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user Brian

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.

281 Comment

  • Emmaleigh504

    Come to the unofficial happy hour, darlings! It’s at Southern Hospitality. Fried green tomatoes, French 75s, excellent company. What could be more fun!

  • Rant: When are we going to get some restaurants in Capitol Hill East? Not H Street, not Barracks Row but the area around Stadium Armory metro? I’m not sure if there are zoning restrictions or what, but I definitely think there is high demand for it.

    Rant/Rave: I had to move out of DC for work for 6 months, which has been very depressing, but thankfully PoP keeps me up to date on DC matters! Thanks PoP!

    • Ally

      Maybe soon. The Reservation 13 development project — in a limited capacity — finally got funding and is set to begin this year I think. It’ll be mixed housing/retail and will be located over the non-A St SE exit. Not sure if we’ll get any restaurants, but it’s a start. For now, your only options in Hill East (other than Eastern Market, Barrack’s Row, Potomac) are:

  • RANT: After 1 and 1/2 years in my renovated home- I saw mouse in kitchen when I got home from work yesterday. I immediately went to the store to and bought glue traps. I put one on top of counter top and one on floor and I swear by the time I turned around to separate the remaining to glue traps to set, the ones I just place each caught a mouse. It was literally two minutes tops. I set the other ones over night and caught a 3rd one. What the hell? I’ve never seen any, and the first time I did- I end up catching 3 of them? F**K
    RANT/RAVE: I usually dry heave when having to pick up these things, but I handle the cleanup pretty ok.
    RANT: I don’t know if there’s more.

    • They make pretty effective mouse traps that are completely covered so you never have to see the mouse. You should try some if you get tired of picking them up this way… they probably have them at ACE.

    • That One Guy

      Don’t you have to also look for and clean up the mouse pellets? Thought that they were unhealthy to breath in.

      • that’s the thing_ I haven’t seen any signs of or droppings. When I saw the first one- I picked up a pack of hot dog buns and sure nuff there was a hole and bread chewed up. Ok- I’m about to either cry or throw up. or both…I really hate having found this out.

    • *Shudder!* ugh! I grew up in a very old home (like 175 yrs old) and we often had mice at different times, but I can remember one night where we caught 5 over the course of 4 hours, in those snap traps. That night haunts my dreams! Just “SNAP!” one after the other. I currently have 2 decent mousers, though I live in a new building and haven’t seen much more than a fruit fly so far, thank the gods! But I can always lend you a kitty for a week!

      • I’m just baffled that I hadn’t seen a single one all this time- nor any traces of mice and then this happens. I’d probably need a week or more just to get my dog comfortable around a cat (not even sure if that is possible). but thanks though. I set more traps today, and will be pulling of the stove when I get home to see what the hell is happened. That’s where I saw the first one ran before I set the trap.

        • We periodically got mice in my parents’ house. Most of the time we only knew about it because we’d find some mouse droppings in the silverware drawer (the access point must have been on that side of the kitchen, under the sink). Or when the cat or dog would be abnormally interested in the area under the sink. Aside from caught in traps, I think I only actually saw a mouse once when I was in college. At 10pm each night it’d run from behind the dishwasher across the floor to behind the fridge (almost like clockwork). Took a while to catch that sucker.

        • good idea – my next-door neighbor in my last apartment building (when I lived in Philly) had a LOT of mouse activity going on behind her oven, and one even died back there and stunk to high heaven, but the stove/oven was so heavy and connected to a weird gas hook-up that she couldn’t move it. Hopefully you can find where they’re coming from and seal that shit up tight!

      • DCON covered mouse traps (The longs ones NOT the circle ones) are a god send. Reusable and usually the mouse doesn’t even get a taste of the sweet sweet peanut butter before WHAMMO. You don’t even have to re-bait it.
        You can slide the dead mouse into the trash and not even seen it really. Just it’s little tail hanging out.

        Another piece of advice: Mint oil. Make a mix of it with water and start spraying around the cracks in your kitchen. Mint extract burns the nostrils of the mice and they usually avoid going into rooms with it. You can also place some on cotton balls and drop them behind furniture.

    • As someone who hates rodents of any type, you have my sympathies. It seems like you have an access point that needs plugging. Start by pulling out your refrigerator and dishwasher, then inspect for gaps around the lines that lead into the wall. Fill any holes with caulking or steel wool. Good luck!

    • I Dont Get It


      • HaileUnlikely

        I love my good little kitty, but she is not much of a hunter. She thinks mice are sophisticated little toys. She’ll just paw at them, sometimes gently, other times more vigorously, and then let them go. Once she accidentally killed one and then just kept pawing at it, kicking it around the room, but she clearly enjoys that game more when the mice play back rather than going limp…

        • I Dont Get It

          I think cats have to by taught to kill. My cat is a great mouser and woe to any rodent who makes the mistake of entering my house.

          • Taught by whom — their mamas? Their humans?
            I got the impression that some cats are just better mousers than others (and that some aren’t particularly interested in chasing mice).
            I adopted my cat as an adult, so I don’t know who (if anyone) taught her to hunt… but I discovered her mousing ability when one day I found half of a mouse on the floor next to my bed.

          • I Dont Get It

            By their mother.

          • I Dont Get It

            BTW textdoc did you see my late post yesterday about using Dawn as an insecticide? My ex “Mother-in-Law” taught me this trick and its good for certain types of pests and doesn’t kill the environment.

            Google Dawn dish soap insecticide

          • How does your cat (or any) for that matter catch those quick little things that dash under appliances and hides under stuff etc? do they scope out? I can understand in a open space, but in a full furnished home with lots of hiding places?

          • Emmaleigh504

            Ashlee was a great mouser, her mother was not. Ashlee just like the thrill of the chase. Sometimes she brought them to me so we could play fetch. After her “toy” mouse moved on it’s own, I made sure all toy mousies were pink green or blue. No mixups! Ashlee was always so sad when her “toy” quit working. She had such a pitful mew while she nudged her toy to keep moving.
            Judging from the way Donna plays with her toys, she would chase a mouse and then turn to me to throw another her way. She’s so lazy.

          • Emmaleigh504

            Ashlee would wait by their entrances. Her favorite was in a lower cabinet I didn’t know they had chewed through. she could see them coming and scoup them right up. Some times they got away, but usually even those were clawed back out for play time.

          • IDGI, I hadn’t actually Googled it yet, but I did see your post from late yesterday about using Dawn as an insecticide. Thanks for the reminder — I’ll look into it and see what type of pests it’s supposed to be effective for.
            My crape myrtle had an infestation of what I think were/are aphids. The bugs on the azaleas are something different — similar size, but black.

          • IDGI, I propose a deal: I will consider an environmentally friendlier method of treating bugs on my plants if you will attend tonight’s happy hour. 🙂

          • I Dont Get It

            Kill away :-

    • Ugh, that is no fun, you have my sympathies. I also had good luck with the glue traps, but had to remember to check them regularly. Because it is really not good if you catch one and don’t notice it before they die.

    • Not to gross you out, but an exterminator once told me that if you see a mouse, it’s probably because they were born in the house and don’t know the dangers of being visible. That made sense to me. Hopefully this is just a litter of new ones that you’ve managed to get rid of. I had them at my old place occasionally, but it was very quick to catch them and then I would get a break for six months to a year or more. Good luck! The zap traps are nice because you don’t have to touch anything. The white traps that have the teeth are also effective. I caught two at once one time with that thing!

    • SouthwestDC

      In my experience if you see one it means there are several more hiding somewhere. That’s why I always have traps set– to catch the majority of them that I would otherwise have no idea are there.

  • Rave: Sounds like I’m going to have an interview for possible-new-job sometime this week! Fingers crossed. Waiting to hear back on a time.
    Rant: May not be able to go to the happy hour tonight because of some errands after work. Womp womp. Trying to figure out how to juggle things.
    Rant/Rave: No tinder matches for over 2 days (how?!) but I did finally get an OkC message from someone who seems decent. I was hoping to go on a few dates before schools starts again in two weeks, so we’ll see what I can pull off!

  • Revel: barely 3 days into my new school and holy crap, the grass is so much greener here that I’m realizing just how fucked up my last school was.
    Rant: they hired a first year teacher to replace me at my old school… I was told by the county that my position was eliminated there and my principal even told me she was doing what she could to keep me. I know I’m in a much better school now but I’m still pissed they replaced me.
    Rant: fucking bulletin boards
    Rave: HH

  • Pablo Raw

    Rave: Went to Ikea last night and didn’t get lost, got all the stuff I needed and they actually had everything
    Rave: HH tonight
    Rant: My place is a mess
    Rave: but it’s for a good cause; it’s going to look really nice when I’m done.

  • Rant: The crime upsurge in general and slaying of Matt S. in particular have me really questioning my progressive politics and views of DC. The inability to have an honest conversation about DC’s social problems is frustrating and makes me want to wash my hands of the whole thing.

    Rant: My job would make it very hard to leave DC.

    Rant: I’m realizing I share some political views with Conservatives, but I find the national party and most of its positions distateful. Yet, I’m finding the views and actions of many of DC’s Democrats distateful as well. I wish there were a moderate, sensible and pragmatic party in DC to rally behind.

    Rave: I’m going on vacation and getting needed time away.

    Rave: I’ll probably be in a much better mood when I get back.

    • HaileUnlikely

      New job in Ohio campaigning for John Kasich?

    • if you find that moderate sensible and pragmatic party will you let me know? I am a life long republican who finds myself falling further and further away from the national party because of the ridiculous positions that most people abhor. On a local level, like you (i think), I am frustrated by the inability of our leaders to control the problems in our neighborhoods. I agree with those who argue that the source of the crime is a lack of education and the poverty gap, I don’t see college educated or wealthy individuals shooting each other over games of dice.

      But education and widespread urban poverty are also not issues we can change overnight. We must find a way to attack crime head on, while simultaneously working on our deeper issues. If an emergency room patient has diabetes and comes in bleeding, which problem do you try to resolve first?

      Our biggest stumbling blocks may be:

      1) the mindset of those who have lived in DC forever that this violence is a problem we have come to expect in our city and is tolerated.
      2) the cultural mindset that being a snitch is the greatest crime of all.
      3) the fact that our local politicians are scared of newer residents (read: white voters) pushing them out of office.

      The older residents in my neighborhood (Petworth) are just as concerned about this as anyone else, they take great pride in their city, in their neighborhood, and in the hard work that it took to become a home owner. It is time we banded together to get rid of the criminal element and create a sense of neighborhood pride that we can all share and build a better city from.

      • Outback2010 –Your last point about the concern that the “older residents” in your neighborhood have seems to contradict first point that violence is a problem that “is tolerated”. Your second point about “cultural mindset” seems to ignore the very real risks that “snitches” face — without protection. Perhaps the real issue is that solutions to violence, particularly entrenched violence are complex and expensive.
        I wonder how many people who deride the so-called “cultural” prohibition against snitching have been in a position to “snitch” themselves and be directly affected by the consequences. I lived and worked in Baltimore when the Dawson family was murdered. Their house was bombed, and seven people, including children were killed. The impact on the community — particularly those, who, like your neighbors, were “just as concerned as anyone else” was devastating and far-reaching.

        I agree with many of your points, and share your frustration with the impact of violence on our community, and your hope that together, we can, indeed, build a better city.

        • Blithe,

          It seems my typing was faster than my thinking.

          I think both groups exist in the city. I just hope there are more of the “proud” neighbors than those who tolerate violence.

          With regard to your comments on snitches, I know that the threat of retaliation is real, and I am in no way blaming individuals who are too afraid to come forward for fear of retribution. I think everyone’s first and most important priority is the safety of themselves and their family. Unfortunately, you are also right that the solutions to the entrenched violence are expensive, and as we are seeing this summer, the police simply can’t do this on their own. Long story short, when we are too afraid to report crime in our own neighborhoods, the criminals are winning, hands down.

          • Blithe

            Outback2010 – I re-read your comments, and find it interesting that none of your stumbling blocks point to opportunities for the “newer residents” to bring about change — beyond possibly voting in new politicians. I agree with you that everyone’s first priority should be their safely. From my perspective, though, a huge stumbling block is that many of us focus on ourselves, and our families, and our personal circles, without seeing ourselves as part of the larger community — which, to some extent, limits our ability and our willingness to bring about the types of changes that the vast majority of people would like to see.

            I’m old-school — as in: “Maybe a block party?” lol, but I’d love it if one of the things that could grow out of the PoPvillage community could be strategies to become a less polarized, more neighborly city. I think the opportunity for dialogue and larger conversations is an important step in the direction of action and genuine change.

        • A large part of my frustration stems from feeling like every proposed common sense solution outside of throwing more money at the problem is met with a run around of logic (more policing yet fewer police!), ignored or challenged although it’s grossly obvious (crime eminates to a significant degree from the public housing), insults (you’re a racist and only care about white people/it’s too complex for you to understand) or things that are designed more to obfuscate (you should insert yourself somehow into the broken families and fix them.)

          I’m not living on a trust fund and have a hard enough time with my own family and life. This s*** is overwhelming and impossible.

          • I’m sure there’s nothing about your DC position that would make it impossible to transfer elsewhere if it’s important enough to you to move. I mean if you think “public housing” is an “obvious” solution (as in, what? removing it?) and don’t understand why it’s ignored (especially when it’s prefaced with “throwing more money at the problem” as an epithet) then yeah nothing’s going to get better around here for you.

          • I imagine power of flight’s comment is along the lines of what you’re talking about, FormerDelRay? Power of flight, if you don’t believe that crime emanates to a significant degree from public housing or that public housing is a valid part of the conversation on reducing crime, I’d love to see you substantiate those beliefs. Alternatively, please feel free to divulge whether things are going to get better around here for me or whether I too should transfer elsewhere. You seem to feel you speak with authority on where people should live.

          • “if you don’t believe that crime emanates to a significant degree from public housing or that public housing is a valid part of the conversation on reducing crime”

            Now who’s obfuscating? What does “public housing is a valid part of the conversation on reducing crime” mean? Whatever it means it sounds far from an “obvious” solution.

          • The issue of public housing is a valid part of the conversation on reducing crime. What part of that statement is confusing to you?

          • What confuses me is how that’s a meaningful statement. Private housing is a valid part of the conversation on reducing crime. Does that mean anything to you as it stands, or is it clear that I need to expound in some way?

          • Actually, I don’t think it would help if you expounded because you’re not currently making much sense. Public housing has a demonstrable association with crime that private housing does not. If this is news to you, I encourage you to educate yourself.

          • and therefore?

          • “Public housing has a demonstrable association with crime” is a meaningless statement from a policy POV because it only makes sense as a thing to say to someone who doesn’t need it. Its only intent is to give housing to people who otherwise can’t afford it (in a society where the well being of everyone is otherwise completely dependent on the whims of industry). It’s demonstrably very successful in that goal.

            If its residents have to deal with crime more than they would in private housing, that’s infinitely more their concern than it is yours. And as residents of that housing, a statement like “the issue of public housing is a valid part of the conversation on reducing crime” would be a nonstarter (and completely non-nonsensical) in addressing the problem.

            I mean, I guess. “The issue of public housing is a valid part of the conversation on reducing crime” actually sounds like the words of someone who doesn’t want to say what they want to say.

          • And therefore it would behoove you to not act like such a dismissive and judgmental know it all when other people express their feelings, thoughts, or concerns lest you reveal your own ignorance.

          • “And therefore” as in and therefore what follows a statement like “public housing has a demonstrable association with crime”? And therefore we should build more to further alleviate the horrors of poverty, which includes crime? And therefore we should spread it out to discourage the theoretical effects of concentrated poverty? And therefore we should invest more in making them a welcoming and safe environment for residents?

          • Hahaha. Nice try. It’s not my job to answer all your questions about public housing and poverty as they relate to crime, but I agree that those are good issues to ponder and discuss – hence my original point.

  • Rave: Dapper Old Gentleman (DOG) is king of his newly annexed territory, aka the extra rug I bought because he’s not into my hardwood floors. You know I love you if I’m will to change my decorating scheme for you. That’s serious business for me.
    Rant: Home Depot. If my order is supposed to be ready by 5pm, I shouldn’t have to make you start putting it together when I show up at 5:20, then wait over 25 minutes for you to find two things. Can’t wait for Lowe’s.
    Rave: holy shizznits our bonus structure is way different than last year and it’s a boon for me 🙂
    Rave: kitchen back splash replacement and under cabinet lighting here I come.
    Rant: I’m so tired this week. I haven’t been hitting snooze, thanks DOG for incentivizing that, but I’m struggling.

    • I Dont Get It

      I love his name…or nickname? His nom de PoPville?

    • Extra rave: I got a volunteer spot at Snallygaster. All of my beer friends are busy that weekend, so I feel like this is a chance to go and meet some new people. Not sure I’ll get to drink that much beer though.

    • Emmaleigh504

      I recently updated a few area rugs, just to freshen things up. Then Donna sat on one and the oranges and reds complimented her beautifully. The rug that was replaced was blues and grey which went with Ashlee’s coloring. I unconsciously decorated around my cats. I’ve decided to take this as a positive and urger everyone to do the same! 🙂

      • I have 100% fully consciously decorated around my dog. Since he’s white and tan, my sheets are white, couch is light gray, etc etc…in an effort to not have to see so much white hair standing out against dark things.

        • I did the same thing. My couch is the same color as my dog. 🙂

          • My dog is mostly black and my decor is mostly light grey and cream.
            Oh dear.
            And he doesn’t like the vacuum, but he won’t get off the rug. I’m not sure how this is going to go.
            But he also doesn’t go on the couch, so at least there’s a win for my furniture.

          • I push the vacuum in my dogs direction when he’s being stubborn. If he’s scared of it, he should move.

          • My sofa, chair, and various seat cushions are the same color as my cat. Camouflage FTW! (And removable coverings that can be washed.)

          • Emmaleigh504

            y’all are practical! I just thought the colors looked good on my cats, rugs as fashion for kitties. My whole life is covered in cat hair IDGAF.

    • That One Guy

      Maybe consider Pawz for DOG to help with the wooden floors. Don’t know if he’s sliding around or just timid.

      • Yeah, I might have to try those. We’ll see if he even keeps them on.
        I’m hoping he’ll eventually get over it and I’m will to put rugs in spots, but I’m not covering my whole condo in rugs.

        • That One Guy

          Make sure you record a video of DOG trying out the Pawz. You only get the silly walk/hop/shake once and if you miss it it’s gone forever.

          Also IKEA had cheap circular rugs in the kid section if you need to cover a few spots.

          • I understand the practicality of that suggestion, but before I build a brightly colored Swedish land bridge through my condo, I’m going to see if he can learn to deal with it first.
            I love him and I will make changes for him, but putting rugs across the whole place for him is bumping up against my strong aesthetic preferences.
            Great suggestion on the video! That’s if I can get them all on him. We’ll see how it goes.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rave: I have an enabler! Her name is Lisa and she lives in San Fransisco. Over the past few years she’s enabled some jewerly purchases, some shoes and now raincoat from sweden (sitting in my cart, trying to say no).
    Rant: My Enabler has way more disposable income.
    Rave: The rain coat isn’t that much, it will be useful, and it’s from SWEDEN! I’ve pretty much talked myself into it, but need to figure out which still I want.

  • Rave: HH tonight! Looking forward to wearing red and having a drink or two!
    Rant: Today is going to draaagggg. Despite all the sh*t I need to get done, I just know today is going to crawl by like an obese tortoise.
    Rant: This weather is gross. Bring back last week’s lovely weather.

    • “I just know today is going to crawl by like an obese tortoise.”
      I literally just LOL’d at that.

  • Rave: Promising job interview yesterday. I’m getting way ahead of myself but there are so many pros and cons to weigh that it’s kind of stressing me out already, but good to finally have a glimmer of hope. If this falls through, I wonder how hard it would be to make a living doing freelance translating or something.
    Rant: The couple fighting on the sidewalk this morning. The body language made me nervous (her pushed up against the wall, him leaning in/over and yelling) but I didn’t really know what to do. I wish I had at least asked if she was ok.
    Rave: Finally painting the living room tomorrow! Woot!

    • I Dont Get It

      What color? I think we discussed this already but I forgot. I know there was an owl joke.

    • Re. freelance translating — Let me know if you want me to put you in touch with a good friend of mine who did Japanese-to-English translation for a long time.

      • That would be amazing! I can use all the info I can get. Thank you! My email address is just firstname. lastname at gmail 🙂

    • Oooh, good luck with the job interview!! 🙂 Keeping my fingers crossed for you!
      It’s so hard to know what to do in a situation like your rant, since sometimes trying to help can make things worse… 🙁

    • Awesome to both the interview AND the painting 🙂

  • Rant: This morning, I spilled coffee on myself, necessitating an outfit change (why I am not wearing the blue shoes) then went to take my allergy medication and spilled the glass of water allll over the counter (that was a crazy amount of water for some reason), my garbage disposal decided it wasn’t going to work and my laptop heard from the garbage disposal that was the way to go, and so it is also not cooperating.

    Rave: Chai from Baked & Wired.

    Rave: Really good meeting at my condo last night.

    Rave: HH tonight!

    • There are videos on how to rest a disposal. In my case a nickel had fallen in there, so be sure to check, but the reset was easy to do.

    • Regarding the disposal, like others said it might just need a reset or to be manually turned to get un-stuck. Is the motor running and the cutting parts aren’t rotating, or just nothing happening when you flick the switch? If it’s the former, it’s probably stuck. Check to make sure there’s nothing in there (with it off, you’ll need to stick a hand in), then there’s a spot on the bottom that you can stick an Allen wrench into and turn it manually. If it’s the former, try pushing the reset button (often red) on the bottom and see if that helps.
      At my old place I managed to “break” the disposal several times (my fault) but the reset button usually fixed it. Once or twice I also had to take a plunger to it first (like I said, I was stupid and put stuff down there I shouldn’t have). When I got the disposal installed in my new place the guy said that it’s pretty rare for them to flat out break unless they’re super old or very cheap, so manually rotating with a wrench will most often work.

  • Rave: Going to Rasika West End for a Restaurant Week lunch with coworkers. Yum, looking forward to it! I rarely do RW, but thought this was worth a shot.
    Rave: Looking at possible volunteering ideas, like helping kids with reading (books books books~) or helping out at a shelter.
    Rant: I am apparently commitment-phobic when it comes to this kind of thing and have been waffling about actually applying…
    Rave: Saw new therapist, she has already seemed like a vast improvement over the other person I went to. Actually proactive, asked me questions, and suggested ideas for me to try… We’ll see how that goes!
    Rant: Roommate started a new job that she gets up at 5:30 am for, and I keep getting woken up. She’s not being unduly loud, I’m just a light sleeper, but so tiiiired…

    • Oh, I LOVE Rasika! Enjoy!!

    • can you sleep with earplugs in? I have really sensitive hearing, and I’ve slept with earplugs since my college days, that’s the only way I can stay asleep anymore.

      • Whenever I sleep with earplugs in they fall out by morning. =/ Really helpful for trying to get to sleep at night but I’ve almost never woken up with them still in. Plus I worry about sleeping through my alarm. Hopefully once I get used to the noise I’ll start sleeping through it…

      • Also try a fan. White noise is essential for me, otherwise every little sound wakes me up.

    • Allison

      As for reading with kids, I used to regularly substitute-volunteer for a friend who volunteered with the Reading All-Stars program every Saturday morning at Harriet Tubman elementary in Columbia Heights. I recommend it! 826dc[dot]org/programs/reading-all-stars/

  • Rant: Overnight somebody smashed up all the nice little benches in front of Firehook at Q & 19th. What possibly goes through someone’s head while they’re doing that? I will never understand.
    Rant: Big anniversary coming up, but I’ve been far too stressed and busy to even really think about it.
    Rave: Spouse headed to Hawaii on business in November means we’re both going! Can’t come soon enough.

  • I Dont Get It

    Rave Metro Edition: When presented with the option of entering two different cars I select the one with the better looking people (you know you do it too).
    Rave Metro Edition: Sometimes when wearing a short sleeve shirt and I’m holding an upper bar, I flex my bicep although
    Rant Metro Edition: This was probably more effective 10 years ago.

    • topscallop

      Interesting tactics. What should the ladies be doing to draw the attention of attractive dudes on the metro? Does subtle flexing work in both directions (disclaimer: I’m too short to reach the upper bar)? Mainly I notice when girls preen themselves on the metro and find it very unappealing and vain. Stop looking at your reflection in the window!

  • Rant: Burning the candle at both ends is taking its toll.
    Rave: Taco Saturday!
    Rave: Restaurant week dinner.
    Rave: Still on time closing even with slightly late appraisal.

  • Rave: Getting out of town this weekend to upstate NY. Very excited to see friends and enjoy what will be a beautiful wedding.
    Rant/Maybe Rave/Query: I applied for a job last October of 2014 and didn’t get it – the organization was complimentary to my experience but had decided to hire at a level below mine. They’re hiring again at the level I’m looking for, should I reach out to my contact and see if it’s worth re-applying? Or is that tacky?

  • justinbc

    Rave: Arabesque tile went up in the shower yesterday. I thought it looked cool when we picked it out, but holy cow it looks absolutely stunning when you see it wrapped around the open shower. If these bathroom photos don’t garner a couple thousand Houzz likes I’m gonna be sorely disappointed.
    Rant: Painting the new staircase is taking forever. This fresh wood is just soaking up paint like a cactus does water. 3 hours last night to do part of one railing, post, and baseboards. Preliminary assessment this morning though looks like the wait will be worth it, the black really pops against the walls.
    Question: Anyone ever ordered from Casco Bay Furniture? Was looking to get a new chair + ottoman combo from Restoration Hardware then read on The Garden Web that some folks had used them to get a much better made product for less than RH. Curious if folks here have had the same experience.

  • Rant: The relationship is over and damn it, I miss him already despite the way he’s been treating me the last couple of weeks.
    Rave in time: I know it doesn’t make sense to be with someone who isn’t feeling it, and it’s better to know now than six months from now, but I am in so much pain. 🙁
    Rant: Not looking forward to starting all over again and the great likelihood of getting burned again.
    Rave: My friends are the absolute best.

    • I’m sorry you had to go through that! I went through it six months ago and if it makes you feel any better eventually you’ll come to love life without him. It’s like a weight lifted off your shoulders!

    • I’m sorry, ending relationships is hard. I hope you’re being gentle on yourself and taking care.

    • Sorry. Looks like you have the right perspective on this situation. Glad you have friends to support you. I”m in the same boat about getting back out there. It’s daunting, but in due time, you’ll be ready. You can take a break then test the waters. Don’t give up!

    • Thanks for all the kind words, Popville. I’m having trouble being kind to myself and can’t escape the painful ‘it was so great, how did we get here?’ loop. It was just so promising.
      It takes time, but good God, the suffering in the interim is almost unbearable. Bring on the videos of goats in pajamas.

  • Rave: I managed to drag myself out of bed in time to do some light exercise this morning. Considering how that past few weeks have gone, this is a major achievement.
    Rant: Clothes are starting to get snug. I’m going to have to put the dress I’m wearing away for post-pregnancy.
    Rant: Why is my office always so cold?

    • I feel you on that last rant. Yesterday I wore pants AND a sweater, and I was still shivering. Our thermostat says its roughly 66 degrees. And people wonder why I’m sleepy during the day, I spend half my time trying to stay warm!

      • That’s unreasonable. They wouldn’t make you work in a 90 degree office, would they? (I’ve sent my staff home before, when the AC has died.) So they can’t expect you to work in a refrigerated office, either.
        You should absolutely speak to someone, and if your office manager or whoever says that it’s out of her/his control, insist that they bring it up with building management.

        • +1. 66 F for an office in the summer is crazy.

          • justinbc

            I don’t know what ours is set at, but it takes a lot for me to be cold and I’m always wearing a jacket and running a space heater during the summer. Double electricity wasted.

          • Yeah, I was thinking about the electricity-wasting factor the other day when D.C. was experiencing a “heat emergency”… and I was taking off my turtleneck and blazer as I was leaving the office.

      • 66 is insane. That’s like working in an ice box. Did you see the NYTimes article about how office temperatures are based on workplace assumptions from decades past (ie, set to accommodate the body temperatures of a mostly male workforce)? It was very interesting, and I was really tempted to cut and paste it into an email to our office management company.

        • Yup! I guess that’s what happens when you work for a male-dominated suit-wearing federal agency… -_-

          • +1 I am wrapped in a fleece blanket with a fleece jacket on top (that I keep in my office), sort of like a makeshift snuggie. it’s actually not that bad except when I have to go to the printer or the bathroom and have to take off all my layers to sprint shivering through the hallway.

        • Yes to that article! We are not alone! And I currently have two scarves on and look absolutely ridiculous… but it’s cold dammit!

  • RANT: My party wall neighbor is gutting their house…it is so weird to see the back ripped off. It makes me nervous that my house is going to get messed up somehow. They have permits but still…keeping an eye out for cracks, etc.

    RAVE: I am interested to see it when its finished and see what sort of price it gets. Also its been vacant the entire time I’ve lived in my house so I am kind of excited to have neighbors! But also be careful what you ask for, right? fingers crossed.

    • Your utility bills should go down! My neighbor at my last place said theirs went down by a third or so the second we started to heat and cool the place. WOOHOO!

  • Rave: Scary pregnancy weekend resulted in an early ultrasound on Monday. We saw the heartbeat. It was awesome.
    Rant: Bed rest sucks but I’ll do whatever they tell me to do
    Rave: Planning the fall garden. Hopefully we’ll be able to rip out the summer garden in the next couple of weeks.
    Rave: Blueberries in the fridge may result in blueberry muffins later today because it sounds awesome.

    • Sorry you went through a scary weekend 🙁
      Is it a time limited bed rest?

      • Thankfully, yes. Just a few days and then I’m supposed to keep activity light. I have to go back in next week to make sure everything is okay.

  • rant: co-worker accused me during a staff meeting of me cussing her out. not true. but whatever. we moved on. yesterday, she could not find something on her desk. she then told me to stay away from her desk and to not take things off it. I said to her i did not know what she was talking about. (plus, i have better things to do than go through someone’s desk.

    she ended up finding the item about 15 minutes after accusing me of taking it. not sure how to handle this odd hostility towards me. she has been here longer than I have and it’s already obvious from the staff meeting that supervisors tend to take her word over mine. I feel helpless. 🙁

    • Start documenting everything. It can be as simple as a notebook where you keep a log if/when future incidents with her occur. Be very neutral in how you write everything — just recording the facts without vitriol.

      One hopes that something like this won’t escalate, but she seems a bit paranoid/erratic. So documentation is a good start to CYA.

      • she wrote down impressive dialogue for the staff meeting. the thing is…..notes are notes. they are not solid evidence. we could both write a million notes, but it just does not prove anything.

        when i said to her i never said what she claimed, she said “i wrote it down…” as if it was legit. so it was really me vs her and she came out on top. I just feel stuck.

        • I’d try to have a private, calm, talk with your manager. Tell him/her what has been going on (again as neutrally as possible) and say that you want a good working relationship with everyone, then ask for ideas about how to work well with your colleague. It doesn’t help to write things down and never to have told anyone.

        • It sounds really bizarre for your colleague to write down a dialogue – you cursing at her – that didn’t take place.

      • Yeah — document what happened, document all future interactions with this person, and try to talk privately with your supervisor about your co-worker’s hostility.
        Someone publicly accusing you of cussing her out is a pretty big deal. I don’t think this is the kind of thing you can just “move on” from — you need to be watching your back and expressing your concern to your supervisor.
        If the co-worker is flat-out manufacturing conversations that didn’t even take place — as opposed to misquoting/mischaracterizing something you said — that is a worrying sign. Perhaps she feels threatened by you and is trying to discredit you with the goal of getting you fired or making you so miserable that you resign?

        • phl2dc

          I had the same thought re: coworker feeling threatened.

          Problems, you really should have a private conversation with your supervisor – the sooner the better.

    • well yesterday when she accused me of stealing something off her desk, i did want to write it down. but then again, i thought someone would think that was me being vindictive or something after the staff meeting.

  • Rave- got my red on for happy hour!
    Rave- I put a red panda cub picture as my desktop so I am giving myself almost constant animal fixes.
    Rant – none yet, thanks!

    • I have a red panda calendar at my office, they’re just so darn cute!! Not that I want to add a rant for you, but only recently did I find out how endangered they are. So sad.

  • Rant: My cat came over and sneezed in my face at 6 AM this morning
    Rant: Woke up to see cat staring at me like nothing happened
    Rave: Leftover birthday cake for breakfast!!

    • I am so sorry.. your first and second rants made me laugh out loud at work. I’ve had this happen to me, too, and it is the worst way to wake up. Cats can be heartless!

    • I feel your rant – that is happened to me!! The worst is when the cat starts making heaving noises on the bed!

      • Ah yes! the heaving noises and the frantic search that ensues for something nearby that I can slip under heaving cat’s head in case he’s about to expel his stomach contents all over the bed/covers/me.

  • Rant: Bathroom contractor just told me the faucet we bought won’t work because we need a 4 inch spread. The one we bought is an 8 inch spread! My fault, but we’ve had it for like 2 months and he tells me this the day they’re going to install it?! Thanks! On that note, does anyone want to buy this bathroom faucet from me!? http://www.amazon.com/Moen-84778MSRN-Ashville-Widespread-Protection/dp/B00E951BKK/ref=sr_1_1?&ie=UTF8&qid=1439995844&sr=8-1&keywords=moen+bathroom+faucet+ashville
    Rave: Bought a new one that will work and it was cheaper!

      • I know, oh well if this and some rotted wood is the worst to happen I can’t complain. And also looks like my mom is going to take the faucet!

        • justinbc

          +1, we got very lucky in our bathroom remodel so far as well. I expected half the wood to be rotted and walls needing to be replaced, but so far only ran into one snag when positioning the skylight between the joists. It’s a $1,700 fix, but I was anticipating this job going $10K over budget with all the complexities, so I’ll happily accept that.

  • Rant: In the hospital after a very very scary scare last night. Even the nurses were positive we had lost the babies.
    Rave: But we didn’t! They’re totally okay.
    Rave: This hospital is like a hotel. My breakfast is better than what I would have at home (and is protein filled)!

  • Late Rave: Interview tomorrow! WAHOOOOOOO! I don’t know whether to be excited or slightly terrified.

  • Rave: Speedwork on the treadmill and track paying off! I ran 2.3 miles in 23 minutes on the treadmill on Monday (giving myself 2 – 1min walk breaks) and ran a mile in 9:40 on the track today. I am planning to run a trial 5K on Sunday to see how I am doing in a race, but all signs point to being on track for a 30 min 5K PR in October!

  • GiantSquid

    Rant: packing
    Revel: Informal job interview yesterday that went well. Will hopefully result in some additional freelance work that will grow into something more reliable.
    Rant: MD Unemployment hasn’t told me if my claim is accepted so I can collect benefits nor denied it so I can stop jumping through their hoops. I’m in unemployment limbo.
    Revel: Paid for parking signs online from my sofa Sunday, went into DCRA this morning and picked them up. Super easy! Hopefully the rest of moving is that painless.
    Revel: Parents showing up this weekend to help. Yes, we have movers, but it’s reassuring to have my parents around to help (and wrangle dogs.)
    Question: Beer suggestions for post-move pizza noshing? I haven’t been drinking beer for while, what’s a good, non-hoppy, mid-price range alcoholic beverage for the hard workers?

  • RAVE: Husband had a great appointment with the GI doc this morning. After a solid 6 months of eating right, exercise, and limiting alcohol, his liver enzymes are back to normal levels! No more fatty liver signs and no cirrhosis in sight for him!
    Up until an hour ago, I had no rants. Now:
    Rant: This afternoon, I have to be around SNAKES. OUT OF CAGES. FOR 4 HOURS. WORST FEARS REALIZED. I wish I was exaggerating, but I may die from shock today.

    • That One Guy

      Or you may get over any future snake phobia. So maybe a future rave.

      • Very doubtful. One event cannot eradicate a lifetime’s worth of fear.

        • I’ve had a paralyzing needle phobia for pretty much ever. I have unwisely refused several tests and treatments because they involved needles.
          But I had a health scare last year that required a blood test. Like, “if it’s this problem which is detectible only by blood test, it will kill you without treatment. Blood test or possibly die.” So I did it. And the tech was so good that all of a sudden, most of the anxiety about needles went away. I’m sitting here thinking about blood draws and IVs, and NOT having a panic attack. Which has never happened before.
          All this to say, maybe you’ll meet a snake who will change your mind. You mind find that the tactile sensation is new and different and super cool. You might have this realization that you’re looking at a totally alien kind of intelligence, and see it as fascinating rather than frightening. Be open to that!

          • I used to have the same phobia as a kid. I had to be restrained fully for blood draws. I don’t know what did it, but one day it just changed.
            I was a bit scared of snakes too, but I was able to touch a few at the science center, and all was well. Their blood feels like cold running water; so cool!

        • Blithe

          One event CAN put cracks in the fear though. If this time, you watch someone else comfortably hold a snake, and nothing bad happens; and next time, you gingerly touch a snake, and nothing bad happens, you’ll be on your way to diminishing, and possibly overcoming a phobia.
          But why do you have to be around uncaged snakes for 4 hours? I’m imagining all sorts of possibilities…..

    • phl2dc

      Why do you have to be around snakes?

  • Rant: Bowser
    Rave: Trump’s hat

  • Rant: My phone might be on it’s last legs. It has been really hard to get it to charge lately and the one charger that was working consistently last night. Hopefully a new charger does the trick.
    Rant: not seeing any good cell service deals. I’m with Verizon and would like to switch, but the only other good networks seem to be just as expensive. Anyone have an affordable cell service that they want to recommend?
    Rave: Trying to use my computer for an alarm clock. I finally got it to work right, but for a while, it was cheerfully announcing the time every hour, on the hour.

    • *stopped working last night*

    • HaileUnlikely

      I use ConsumerCellular. I believe the service is through AT&T’s network. Contract is month to month. Plans are for specified number of minutes/texts/data (not “unlimited”). A neat feature is that you can change your plan at any time, and the change is applied retroactively to the beginning of the billing period. This allows you to avoid overage charges, and additionally, if you really pay attention to your usage, you can even *downgrade* your plan on the last day of the billing period if your usage was less than the next lowest one, and pay for the newly-selected lower one for that month. (Not that any normal person would actually do this, but my point is that they explicitly allow this.) FWIW I pay for 750 minutes/unlimited texts/1.5G data and it’s $47.22/month including all taxes and fees. No trickery with phone prices – you can use your own unlocked phone, buy one from them for full MSRP, or buy one using their “easy pay” where the MSRP is pain in installments over 2 years of monthly bills but with no added markup and the fee goes away once you’ve actually paid it off. Haile Recommended.

      • SouthwestDC

        “A neat feature is that you can change your plan at any time, and the change is applied retroactively to the beginning of the billing period.”
        Don’t all plans work that way? I’ve had AT&T since they were Cingular and always had that option.
        And yes, there are people who actually do monitor their usage and change plans accordingly at the end of the month (I’m one of them).

        • HaileUnlikely

          I’ve been off the big-name carriers for several years now. Back when I was with AT&T, then Verizon, then AT&T again, you could upgrade to a higher plan at any time to avoid overage on your current bill, but I thought you could only downgrade once every so often, so it wouldn’t be conducive to minimizing your payment every single month. I don’t know – maybe I missed something.

          • SouthwestDC

            I guess it’s possible I’m not downgrading often enough to run up against that limitation. But the plan you have sounds slightly worse than AT&T’s Mobile Share so I’m wondering what the advantages are.

          • HaileUnlikely

            I’m not intimately familiar with AT&T’s Mobile Share, but I just took a quick look at their website and it looks like the bare minimum that I could pay with a smartphone is $20 for 300MB of data plus a $40 “device access charge” for a total of $60 plus taxes and fees. I’d use more than 300 MB/month anyway, so I’d already be up to $30/month + access charge. At my usage level, I pay $47.22/month including all taxes and fees. Perhaps AT&T would work out to be a better deal at higher usage levels than I actually use. The only plans I’ve seen for less than that are companies like Boost and Cricket, and while I’m vaguely interested in those, I have been dissuaded by horror stories I’ve read about billing errors and horrible customer service.

          • That One Guy

            Thanks for all this info. Just called AT&T to have my mom’s phone data bumped up to 3GB for $30. She racked up $45 in overage fees by watching YouTube videos of church sermons yesterday. -_-#

          • SouthwestDC

            I guess it’s more expensive for single users. We’re three people and it comes to around $40 a person.

    • Not sure what kind of phone you have or are looking to buy, but if I were willing to take the leap of faith and splurge on a Nexus 6, I’d be going with Google Fi. A friend of mine has it in Florida and loves it. Check it out!

    • @HaileUnlikely @eggs: Thank you! Those look like some good options. I’ve been dragging my feet about picking a new company, so this really helpful.

  • Blithe

    Rant: I’m feeling yucky and disgruntled. I’m tired of coughing — although I’m glad that each day it’s getting a little bit better. For some reason, my cheerful pink flower isn’t showing up. And my friends who let me share their porches and their pets are all out of town. blecch
    Rave: Time for a music break. New music!

  • Yesterday I was antsy about a to-be scheduled job interview.
    It got scheduled, at about 5pm yesterday, for 1230 pm today at Dunn Loring Metro.

    7AM today I get an email asking to reschedule it to tomorrow, 9AM.
    BUT it’s now in Gaithersburg! (Big firm, multiple offices)

    That’s OK but it means a taxi ride from Shady Grove – not willing to risk bus transfers for this circumstance. Worth it, if it works out. (And the client site in in DC, so Gaithersburg will not be an every-day thing.)

    Now, more practicing of interview questions. Where DO I see myself in five years, I wonder…?

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