Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user brunofish

You can talk about whatever is on your mind โ€“ 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 peopleโ€™s grammar. This is a place to vent and/or celebrate things about daily life in DC.

232 Comment

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: The iron murdered the box of oxyclean I forgot I had. I suspect it murdered the laundry detergent too, and it wasn’t suicide. The iron is going to jail.
    Rant: The dishwasher pods did suicide, right in front of me. and into wet so 1/2 of the pods popped open.
    Rave: I have a dishwasher.
    Rant: Miralax commercials, making it purple doesn’t make the graphic any less gross! who approves this stuff?!

    • My iron once made a dress disappear before my eyes. Well…the end of the dress. And since I was drunk-ironing I decided that I would at least try to cut that part out and see how things looked. Hint: like I was a hooker. (I wasn’t drunk enough to wear the dress out after that!) Sorry for all of your cleaning product related rants. Woohoo to the dishwasher though – that’s a life-changer.

    • Lots of drama among your cleaning supplies! How did the iron murder the box of Oxyclean?

      • Emmaleigh504

        I was rearranging so there would be no more suicides and I turned to put something down and the iron tipped over and knocked the oxyclean off the shelf. I never iron, so maybe it’s feeling neglected?
        The dishwasher pods were on the counter while I got the damn bucket to put them in so Donna wouldn’t get them and the bag fell over into the wet dishwasher.
        I guess next the vinegar and counter cleaner need to have some sort of excitement.

        • That iron sounds like it committed homicide in an attempt to get attention.

        • Just use vinegar as counter cleaner. Problem solved! I sadly almost never use my dishwasher since I can’t fill it up in one day and super tiny studio plus being in a basement (worried about bugs, humidity, etc) means leaving stuff in there is probably a bad idea. I’d much rather have a washer/dryer combo in its place, since I currently have to coordinate with the landlord to do laundry.

          • Emmaleigh504

            I have a super tiny dishwasher to go with my super tiny studio! It’s perfect b/c I can fill it up in 2 days, 1 day if I do a big cook or have someone over.

          • I was happy to use my dishwasher when I only ran it every five days or so on average. I always rinse the dishes off well before puttin them in the DW. But did have enough cupboards to store a lot of dishes in, so I didn’t run out – that could beard in a small place.

        • phl2dc

          I just laughed so hard at all of this but I am so sorry. How frustrating!

  • Rant: Overwhelmed and exhausted and in pain.
    Rant: Panicking that we’re putting all our hope that inpatient treatment is the answer. And that she’ll miraculously have a great treatment program and be compliant with meds and therapy.
    Rant: Nightmares about my friend ending up in a terrible inpatient treatment center (brought on by looking into involuntary commitment locations for her county and finding that it has been subject to multiple federal investigations for inappropriate harm to patients).
    Rave: Italian chocolate and tea. All I got.

  • rant: can only carry over 3 of 15 vacation days from one year to the next
    rave: job didn’t have any problems with me using most of it to take the last 2 weeks of december off
    rant: no idea what I want or can do over that time
    query: any have a class pass membership but live out in nova suburbs? Is it still worth it? I work downtown so I feel like I could get mileage out of it but having it be useful on weekends would be nice too

  • rave: my cleaners come today! i love walking into my apartment after a day of working and seeing it sparkle.
    rant: having to clean for my cleaners! really it’s just putting things away, but i wish i could just be tidy all the time.
    question for popville minds: my parents and my brother and sister-in-law are coming to visit for christmas for a few days. any good activities to do around that time frame? we already have tickets to the christmas musical at the kennedy center.

    • Zoo Lights is really fun, even for adults ๐Ÿ™‚

    • There is also A Christmas Carol at Ford’s Theater if you can still get tickets. The production is usually very good, and they might enjoy being in such a historic place if they haven’t been.

    • I Dont Get It

      The poinsettia show at the US Botanic Gardens is pretty awesome. Also its fun to wander through the tropical rain forest during winter.

    • SouthwestDC

      When my mom visited in December we did the Zoo Lights and the Botanical Gardens. Both are fun but be prepared to be out in the cold for a long time. You’d think the Botanical Gardens would be all indoors, but you’ll probably be standing in line outside for an hour waiting to get in.
      The Downtown Holiday Market is festive and goes on until December 23rd. You could combine that with a visit to the Portrait Gallery, which currently has an excellent Irving Penn exhibit that would appeal to most people. Also the Renwick is reopening after a major renovation, might be worth checking out.
      Another wintery activity would be ice skating at the sculpture garden or elsewhere.

      • I Dont Get It

        I’ve never waited in line at the Botanic Gardens but I tend to do things like that early in the day.

        • SouthwestDC

          It only gets that crowded for the Christmas exhibit. Getting there right when it opens would probably be a good strategy.

      • I’ve found the Downtown Holiday Market to be very disappointing every time I’ve been. It’s worth a walk through if you are in the neighborhood anyway for something else as you suggested, but I would not recommend it on its own merit.

    • Ice skating in Canal Park is fun in the winter – and it gets busy, but I think it’s generally less crowded than the sculpture garden.

    • I love Hillwood House for people who might have seen the major DC sights, and are ready for something a little different. And the decorations are beautiful around Christmas.

    • Can you say what cleaners you use? I’ve been looking for someone to come in occasionally for a deep clean, ideally someone that I can trust while I’m gone at work!

      • sure! i use CAOS cleaning and have for about two and a half years. they come in while i’m at work and i’ve never had a problem. i would definitely recommend them.

    • Allison

      When I had a relative here for Christmas I took her to the Mansion on O street to search for hidden passages. Good indoor activity.

  • Rave: St. Louis. Passing through on my drive across the country. Haven’t been here since I graduated from college 14 years ago. Lots of changes. Nicer city and the metrolink runs a lot more smoothly than DC metro. Pleasantly surprised. For all the negative press this city gets, it has a lot going for it.
    Rant: raining here today.

    • St. Louis is terrific. Parks, museums, beer baron mansions, and of course, the City Museum. I’d recommend STL to anyone looking to take a weekend trip on the cheap.

  • Rave: PASSED THE NY BAR!!!

    Rant: Ugh, now I need to do all the character & fitness stuff. Bleh.

    Rave: Thanks to all who responded to my quandry re: work & living situations yesterday. My job in Gtown only lasts for another 9 months, so I guess I’ll see what happens after that?

  • Anyone know how to go about finding a good headhunter/recruiter? I have had it up to here with my boss’ constant criticizing and last minute outrageous demands. I will not live like this. It’s time to get out.

    • Honestly, I’d recommend searching LinkedIn for recruiters who work specifically in your field. Or, even better, I’d suggest filling out your LinkedIn profile to make it easy for recruiters to find you.

      • emvee

        Yes, a good LinkedIn profile, much like a milkshake, brings all the recruiters to the yard. Last time I job hunted, about two years ago, I bulked up my profile like mad. Now I get a recruiter reaching out to me every few months which never happened before.

        • LinkedIn gets me nothing, though my entire resume is on there. It needs to be there, as people I network with or apply to jobs with look it up, but it itself does nothing. Different industry.

          • Accountering

            In my industry I have been contacted by probably a dozen different recruiters since I updated my LinkedIn resume.

    • What industry are you in?

      • Healthcare policy/GR

        • lol….. do we know each other IRL?
          Agreed with fka Shawess. LinkedIn is great. Update your profile, make sure to say you are searching for new opportunities. People will start to contact you. I work in healthcare administration, am not searching, and do not have an updated profile and get at least one or two contacts a week.

    • anonymouse_dianne

      IME create a profile with resume on Monster. They will come to you.

  • Rant: Got assigned a project at work that is hugely contentious — someone actually took my pen out of my hand yesterday during a meeting in a display of… stupid? In a display of stupid. It’s kind of put me off my game.
    Rave: Overall, work is going really well.
    Rave: Coffee. Coffee coffee coffee.
    Question: Has anyone ever moved to a new city just because? Rather than for the “typical” reasons like a relationship or a job. Regrets? Successes? Lessons learned?

    • Emmaleigh504

      I have twice. It sucked both times, but I learned things, too. Like 26 degrees is waaaayyy colder than 27. People in SoDak speak a different American English than folks in the SEC. I only like Florida for vacation. Living there sucks b/c all the asshles from Ohio and New York and New Jersey retire there. I also learned I like cities the size of DC. As much as I hated living in SoDak and FL, I would probably do it again. I wanted change.
      I moved to DC b/c my sister is here, so sort of because a relationship. It’s been the best move ever. I love DC.

    • Once. I moved to the UK just, you know, because. Of course I was going to school there, but school ended up being the ends to justify the means. I loved it. Although I would recommend having an incredibly strong sense of self if you intend on moving 3,000 miles away from any sort of support system, for me it was probably the single best experience of my life. If I didn’t have kids, I would totally do it again, and I totally plan on encouraging my kids to do the same/similar when they are older.

      • This is so scary to me. I have a friend who moved to London just after college — she is still there and loves it. At this point it probably wouldn’t be too feasible for me… but it’s an interesting thought experiment!

    • Re Question: That’s actually how I ended up in DC. I had been thinking that I needed a change for a while but wasn’t sure where I was going to go. I put in my 2 week notice at work, gave away anything that didn’t fit into my car, and drove here in the middle of the night only because I had fond memories of the city as a child. I didn’t have a job lined up and only had a temporary place to stay with someone I vaguely knew. Eight years later, I can honestly say it was one of the best decisions I ever made in my life. It allowed me to change careers, go to graduate school, meet my spouse, etc. In retrospect, I probably should have had things lined up better (at least a job and long-term housing) but I would do it again in a heartbeat if I found myself in the situation I had been in (I was completely miserable where I was before).

    • Yeah I am kind of famous for moving just because. I love DC but I get itchy feet, and off I go. NYC twice, Seattle, coastal Maine. Thoughts:

      After a while I always came back here, so the lesson was – I really do want to be here. Although I always moved thinking I would root in the new place, it never happened, and I am happy I tested it out.

      It can play havoc with your career path. At least one of those moves really derailed me big time; I found a job that sort of fit, just to get myself to Seattle. After five years, when it was time to come back east, ‘sort of fit’ wasn’t good enough and I found it impossible to get back on my original track, and the experience I had didn’t translate will to anything in DC.

      But I managed. And I enjoyed the experiences overall. in each place I took advantage and explored pretty far and wide, so that was great. And now I have pools of friends all over the country, and that’s nice too.

    • I retired and moved to DC with no family, friends, or job connections. I moved here just because I liked the city for many reasons. It’s been just over 5 years now and I love it. Regrets: None. Successes: Pretty much everything. Lessons learned: Reaffirmed my belief in making decision and moving forward with them and don’t look back. If it turns out to be not everything you hoped for, make another change.

      • Emmaleigh504

        ” If it turns out to be not everything you hoped for, make another change.” exactly, a move does not have to be forever.

    • I moved three times just because I wanted to. First was to a new city for college. The college was the draw, but the city was really fun. A year or so after college, I moved to NYC just because I wanted to. Had a lot of college friends from there, many who had moved back, and I really liked visiting NYC. Was a great thing to do, enjoyed my life there and didn’t look back. Though I sometimes (much later) wondered how my life would have been different had I stayed in the city I went to college in (life is cheaper there, so certain things are easier), I really think moving was the better choice. At 30 I moved to yet another city for professional school. Again, the school was the draw. Socially, moving was harder – even though the city was fun, I wasn’t really in step with it, due to spending almost all my time at school. I would have been socially happier had I stayed in NYC where my friends were, but I got the better educational experience by moving. I moved back to NYC right after for a job (would have been happy to stay where I was, but the job market sucked there at that time.) Spent many years in NYC after that, and it grew on me and started to feel like I belonged there. Moved here only for a job. I miss NYC, but I like DC OK and would stay, but my next job may take me elsewhere though I’d rather not move again.

      Lessons I learned:

      It is far better to move to a new city just because you want to, than because you need a job and the job requires moving and you have no other choice. If you feel drawn to a place, that (for me) means it is a positive thing and will work out well. (Adjusting to a new place is largely about how you feel about it anyway.) Moving for school fits that category, because usually one is making one choice among many to move to the city where the school is located.

      It is easier to do when younger than older. Making new friends and feeling like a city is your home takes longer the older you get – you have to give a place more time to evaluate it when you are older – like at least 3 years initially, and double that as you age, as the years just go by much faster.

      Many schools are more regional, so it is better for job and professional connections to remain in the area you went to school (probably more true for professional school than undergrad). Oddly this became evident not early in my career, but much later – when you are more experienced, getting jobs can be much harder, and then you wish your school connections were there to help you.

      You can (and probably will) move again, maybe a few times. You find that every city has things that you miss and things you don’t.

      If the goal is to have a life you like and a good circle of friends, then you can probably develop this anywhere. But the opposite is also true – sometimes you really do feel at home in some places and never really will in others. There really are cultural differences between cities, and these can affect your life and happiness level.

      How your career can grow is often dependent on place and the sorts of jobs there are in those specific locations. The field you work in can have a very great affect on how happy you are and the kind of friends you have – often more than the city you live in.

      If you are feeling the urge, give it a try – that’s a sign that you want to.

      • Wow, I really appreciate your reply. I love your narrative — the professional component is definitely an issue… though I’m fortunate to work in an industry that’s pretty much everywhere, with a professional school network that is pretty geographically distributed. I am going to read this again.

        • Thanks much for your reply – I know many people hate to read long comments, so I feel silly when I hit post and see how long it was.
          I work in two common industries that are everywhere – but they are not the same everywhere, there are specialities in different cities that means the job markets are very different.

    • I moved to DC “just because” I didn’t want to live in PA anymore. Granted I have family here, but it was a pretty spur of the moment decision. I was 21 years old, I don’t know if I’d make such a spontaneous decision today.

      • I miss the spontaneity I had in my youth, when I could (and did) just up and move to a new city without a job because I felt like it. No way I would do that now.

    • Can’t contribute but thanks so much for posing this question. I’ve been thinking about this A LOT lately. Feeling claustrophobic in DC an din my job. Just want to get away.

      • I am so with you, obviously ๐Ÿ™‚ I think the biggest thing is: where would I go? I think maybe the first step is trying to travel more… go to a bunch of places and see what clicks.

    • I moved to St. Thomas, VI for no reason, other than it was the VI, so…well, I guess that was the reason!

    • I moved to Arizona for my quarter life crisis. Just because. I did have a social network through church, but I still felt like it took 9 months or so to start to feel like I belonged. Rent was crazy cheap so that was pretty fun. And I got to go explore parts of the state and California I probably would never have seen otherwise. I went out for a week a few months ahead of time and did informational interviews with 10-15 people, so i got a job not long after I arrived. I definitely made some great friends but realized I was WAY too east coast to live in a place so laid back. None of the guys had their own place or degrees, so dating was kind of a nightmare. Moved back to DC for family reasons, but realized that it was home.

    • I moved to two cities very randomly and one city semi randomly. It can feel overwhelming (getting new doctors, licenses, friends, moving, transport, etc) but I really feel like it made life more interesting. I get bored easily (and sometimes wonder if I’ll ever want to stay put). But I’m proud of what I did and the friends I made and the experiences I had. It honestly was the best!

      The worst parts? Making great friends that when you move away you won’t always see (but plus side, friends are always awesome and then you have a built in place to stay when you visit). And searching for a job can stink. I didn’t move for jobs, for any of my three moves. I was never unemployed that long, but can still be a stress both mentally and financially. However some types of jobs are far more transferable.

      DO IT

    • The job market has changed. It used to be they would hire someone who could do the job. Now it seems you have to have experience that is exactly on point to get hired, even though the stuff you learned you learned quickly and easily, and could definitely apply it to slightly different work quickly and easily and expertly – it isn’t rocket science, and can easily be learned (self-taught even) by someone intelligent. Even education and experience that points to the fact that one is quite intelligent and competent doesn’t seem to penetrate – it is as if people hiring have never met an intelligent person before. This makes up and moving to a new city harder than it used to be if you have any experience at all.

  • I Dont Get It

    Rave: I’ve been very good about going to the gym the last three weeks–it is ALMOST starting to feel good.
    Rant: No impression on beer belly yet. Maybe I need to cut back on the post gym in-house Happy Hour ๐Ÿ™
    Rant: Lucy just spent five minutes barking at a window air conditioning unit. I don’t think the Bendryl and Bach Rescue are helping much.

    • Re: Lucy, have you talked to your vet about doggie Xanax? Our vet prescribed it for Gary for the flight from DC to SF. Between that and his Thundershirt, he went from being an easily excitable pup to a very, very, very mellow pup.

      • I Dont Get It

        Yeah we’ve talked about it. I’m trying to start with less expensive, I mean simpler solutions first and work my way up.

    • I love working out, if only the eating better part was easier. It really is more about watching what you eat (and drink). What a pisser.

      • Emmaleigh504

        can you teach me to love working out? cuz I hate every minute of it, always. am I doing something wrong?

        • Maybe try taking classes? I work out better when someone is telling me what to do. Getting a friend to work out with you helps too.

          • Agreed – taking classes help keep me honest and motivated. And you have someone there who can (hopefully) correct things like form, pace, breathing, or other technique, so that you work out better and don’t injure yourself.

          • Emmaleigh504

            Classes fill me with rage. I hate every instructor I’ve ever had. I think being a slug is my calling in life.

        • phl2dc

          Emily, what have you tried? Perhaps you just need to find something that you enjoy!

          • This is what I was thinking. A variety of workout exercises is probably best… but if you hate the exercises and end up not doing them, it would be better to choose something you like and focus on that instead.
            Me, I like walking on the treadmill.

          • phl2dc

            Yeah! Because no motivation to work out + exercise that you hate = even less motivation to work out. I like to run, but you best believe I worked my way up… I started on the stationary bikes, worked my way up to the elliptical, and now run on treadmills / outdoors. Granted, it took me like 10 years but still… ๐Ÿ™‚

          • Emmaleigh504

            hot yoga, step aerobics, roller derby, and regular yoga all sucked. hot yoga was the best of the bunch, but that was in Florida with a particular instructor I only sorta hated. I like to walk, so now I just go a long route to metro on my way to and from work.. I think I like solo activities best. but I still hate it ๐Ÿ™‚

        • can you teach me to not like sugar? best advice, which has already been stated, gotta do what you like. I don’t always want to wake up when it’s 5am and pitch black and cold day after day, so sometimes you may have to lie to yourself about how much you love it ๐Ÿ™‚ But it does grow on you over time, I swear.

          • Emmaleigh504

            I lost my sweet tooth with some drug I’m taking, sadly I don’t know which one it is. I think its my insomnia drug, olanzapine, but can’t be sure. All I know is I bought ice cream Saturday and still have 1/2 the container. That’s pretty epic for me. In fact, I’m sitting here talking about ice cream and have no desire to go get some!

  • Question: Friends coming down from north Jersey again at the end of the week. Any suggestions for a HH spot? We’re all flexible, but I hate to just take them to the same place as last time (Penn Commons, where the HH ran all night, which was glorious). I’m sure I could come up with something, but I’m feeling pretty uninspired.
    Rave: Have cooked my own food a few times over the last couple weeks and enjoyed it.
    Rant/rave: Had an informal intervention with my dad this weekend over his eating/health. Hopefully this kicks him into high gear.
    Rave: Carved pumpkins
    Rant: Left the pants I bought at the outlets at my parents house

  • Rant: Cranky about numerous things.
    Rave: Much to my surprise, an iris in my front yard looks like it’s about to bloom!

    • Emmaleigh504

      My lavender is still blooming! I hope your iris blooms.

      • Thanks, Emily!
        Incidentally, this is an iris from a bunch of rhizome-based irises that I planted midsummer. The 40 iris bulbs I planted in early summer remain a bust. Iris rhizomes > iris bulbs, it seems.

        • Emmaleigh504

          If you by any chance want a lavender plant, I have a wee one that needs moving. I have no idea if it will make it through the winter, but it’s yours if you want it.

  • Rant: My beautiful cat is gone, my wonderful mother has Alzheimer’s… The universe is really working against me these days.
    Rave: For some reason, I feel a tiny bit better coming here and putting my life’s suckitude into writing.

    • Emmaleigh504

      I’m so sorry. hugs

    • I am so, so sorry to hear that. ๐Ÿ™

    • I’m so sorry. I know what it’s like when the universe throws one punch after another. Virtual hug.

    • Thank you. I had a friend say, “It couldn’t get any worse.” We just looked at each other and laughed because my luck has been so terrible this year, it really could get worse. ~knock on wood~

      • I’ve had too many of those years. Interestingly, my yoga studio is offering a session on Yoga for Grief (check out Willow Street Yoga) – having had many in my family with long-term illnesses, grief is something you live with for years not just what comes when someone dies.
        I have always done a bad job of taking care of myself when things get really bad and then I end up with issues (stress induced anorexia once, which caused 6 years of GI problems!!!). Find something that makes you feel better. For me it has been yoga, especially restorative yoga, but there are so many options.

        • Yeah, self care has taken a hit. But thanks for this tip. I emailed the instructor to see when she’s teaching the Yoga for Grief class next.

    • So sorry to hear. I lost my mom to Alzheimerโ€™s in September. Really, I guess, I lost her many years ago to the disease. It’s difficult. I found a support group through Iona Senior Services for adult children dealing with parents with Alzheimerโ€™s. It helped a great deal.

      • Oh, I’m so so sorry about your mom. My mom was only recently diagnosed, but yes, we’ve already lost so much of who she was. I want to turn to her for comfort over the loss of my cat, and other things, because I just want my mom, but she can’t be there for me like that anymore. It’s my turn to just be there for her. And yes, to support groups. I’ve been encouraged to find one and I’m now starting to feel like it’s time.
        Again, I’m so sorry for your loss and I’m glad you were able to find a group that helped you. It’s a terrible, terrible disease.

    • phl2dc

      I’m so sorry. I give you all the hugs.

    • Alzheimer’s is such an evil disease. You slowly lose the person you love in bits and pieces before your eyes. I’m very sorry about your cat and your mom’s diagnosis.

    • I wish there was some sort of thing I could say that would be comforting, or make it okay. I wish I could. This just completely sucks, and I am really, really sorry.

  • Rant: Heartburn so bad that it makes you sick. I honestly thought I was over this phase of pregnancy.
    Rave: Feeling significantly better this morning.
    Rave: I redeemed my epic baking fail (from two weeks ago) by baking a delicious yogurt lemon cake. That recipe is foolproof.

    • I want all the yogurt lemon cake! Can you share the recipe?
      And I feel you on the heartburn. Pregnancy heartburn is a whole other level of hell. I eventually caved and took the serious heartburn medicine for it and wow did it make a difference!

      • Chocolate and Zucchini’s Gรขteau au yaourt. You can find it on her blog. Apparently, it is one of the first recipes French kids learn to bake and even I can’t mess it up. I added lemon zest and a squeeze of lemon for citrus flavor and sprinkled some ginger-flavored sugar crystals on top. It is also quite delicious if you substitute almond extract for the vanilla.

        I really have come to love what I call tea or coffee cakes (non-frosted cakes that you can eat with your hands) so much more than traditional frosted birthday-style cakes.

        • This sounds like absolutely heaven to me right now. Thanks! I need to make something other than the Smitten Kitchen blueberry scone recipe when I bake or I’m going to turn into a blueberry ๐Ÿ™‚

        • I love that recipe! It is truly foolproof. I like subbing different flavors or adding berries. Do you follow the Smitten Kitchen blog? She has a recipe category for “everyday cakes” that you would like. I love those easy, no special occasion needed cakes.

        • I also love The Kitchn’s cranberry cake – but i cut the sugar by 1/3 to 1/2 c. It’s pretty and lasts a whole week.

          • Quotia Zelda

            That cake is amazing, and it won me the agency bake-off 2 years ago. Even Mr. Zelda, who doesn’t really like cranberries, loves that cake.

        • French lady here, I can attest to gateau au yaourt being the first thing I learned to bake growing up…SUPER EASY. and yummy.

    • I hate to tell you this, but there is a good chance your heartburn will last the whole pregnancy, especially as the baby gets bigger. I never had heartburn before pregnancy, and I had it pretty bad during. I kept a constant supply of Tums on me. I can tell you something good though: the minute I gave birth the heartburn went away. I’m being completely serious – I still had heartburn while in labor, and I felt better literally within minutes once she was born. Haven’t had heartburn since.

      • agree- mine lasted most of the pregnancy. Get medicine. I had a bottle of tums refreshers (only flavor that didnt make me sick) in every place I was (bag, car, work, bathroom, bedroom). I also got RX zantac in the last few months. It made prenatal yoga AWFUL. I just stopped doing inversions. Good luck – it’s definitely no joke.

  • Rave: Got to go to a great event last night with my new co-workers. I definitely made the right decision to join their team.
    Rant: Got hit-on by one of the new co-workers (who also happens to be twenty years older than me).
    Rave: Fall weather, getting back into running. Feeling physically and mentally healthy for the first time in a long, long time.

    • I happy to read your raves, even though I miss you! ๐Ÿ™‚

      • I *am* happy….oh boy, maybe I do have a head injury!

      • lol, this isn’t me LBP. If it makes you feel better, Gospel Girl has been so snippy with me that one of my co-workers actually commented on it today. My new co-workers definitely aren’t as cool as Anonamon’s!

        • oh my gosh! Ok, I think I need to get my head examined now! But it COULD have been you, don’t you think?

          • I mean, “new” co-workers, getting hit on, getting back into running, I totally thought it was you! Oy! Time for this gal to go home!

  • RANT: Got hit in the back of the head with a rock that some little piece of $h*t highschool kid threw as I was going into the Metro at Columbia Heights. I was so stunned, and at first was hoping it was an accident, but at the sound of a group of kids laughing, I knew it was absolutely on purpose. I was too shocked – and in too much pain – to stick around, but I reported the incident to the station manager, and he was very nice and radioed the police, at least. I hate the youth of America. They suck.
    Rant: Still have a headache and a very big bruise.
    Raves: Can’t think of any at the moment.

    • Sorry about the little assholes. This is a really shitty thing to have happen!!

    • Not to be a worst-case-scenario person here, but depending on how your head feels in a bit you may want to go to the doctors to get it checked. A rock to the head is no joke.

    • binpetworth

      That’s horrible! Stupid kids. I hope your head feels better soon!

    • That’s terrible — what jerks! I hope the headache and bruise go away soon.

    • I Dont Get It

      Ugh I’m so sorry to read this…

    • I am so angry reading this. LBP.
      I’m sorry about your head and having that experience. It’s just awful to know that there are people who don’t give a sh!t about others.

      • Thanks, Jeslett – I was so angry too, though mostly after a few hours….for the first little while, i was like “What did I do?!” trying to figure out if I cut someone off on accident or bumped someone, but then I was like, “[email protected] that! I didn’t do anything! They’re just terrible, terrible people who want to hurt others to amuse themselves.” and I got really mad. I’m still mad. Going to go to yoga tonight to try to stop being mad.

    • Ouch – sorry to hear this ๐Ÿ™
      I’d recommend advil, some soothing tea and a cupcake….

      • Yeah, I took a nice relaxing bath and had a lovely cup of tea (with a splash of brandy!) last night to try to calm down. I had a blood test I had to do this morning so I couldn’t take any advil, but I guess now I can so I’m going to hunt some down!

    • phl2dc

      What the heck! That’s terrible. Kids are terrible. People are terrible.

    • that happened to me the other week in CH. Your first instinct is just to turn and yell at them, but it only eggs them on. It makes me so angry!

      • Yeah, I was so stunned, and then I wanted to yell, scream at them, but I figured it would only make the situation worse, so I reported it to the station manager. This is why I don’t have a gun. Or a taser or mace. Because I might just snap and use it on stupid little punks like that.

    • Wow, wtf is wrong with people?! I’m so sorry that happened to you.

    • I’m sure he was just protesting gentrification.

      • here’s the thing – in his own small way, he may very well have been. I’m sure it was a combination of trying to show off in his group of friends, imitating what he’s seen many times before, lashing out at a world that hurts you, and just plain old being a smartass little punk. But you know what? [email protected] that. I did nothing to deserve a rock to the head. [email protected] him and his friends and his parents and everyone else who may have modeled this behavior. [email protected] the police and/or those in authority who let him and every kid like him get away with this sh!t.

        • I agree with everything you said – but this was no political statement. This was a punk being a punk. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that someone who, unprovoked, throws a rock at an unsuspecting person is likely, if not certain, to have multiple brushes with the law in his future. It’s a shame that couldn’t have started today. (This is one of the reasons I don’t own a gun, either.)
          Hope you’re feeling better.

          • Thanks, dcd – I knew you weren’t being serious or trying to make a statement, although I know there are some folks who would say that seriously. I’m just surprised at how unsettled I was by this incident, and how I wish I was a better, stronger person who could just dismiss this as a one-off and not be so angry, not take it so personally.

  • Rave – Made apple pie last night to cheer myself up from working at my horrible soul crushing job. It was tasty but ugly. I really need to work on my dough rolling technique.
    Rave – Leftover pie is the best breakfast.
    Rant – Trying to figure out who’s spending the holidays where is always stressful.

    • Try a wide lattice crust (approx 1-1.5 inch strips) and dust it with cinnamon sugar. It’s a little time consuming, but not difficult and almost impossible for it to not look impressive. Just make sure to refrigerate the dough if it starts to get too soft and tear (though you can also hide tears under strips). If you’re really worried, make a batch and a half of dough so you have plenty of extra and make the lattice on a piece of parchment then place it on the pie and trim it down.

      • I find lattice crusts so intimating! I will attempt one for my next pie and see how it goes.

        • You can find some tutorials online, but really lattice crusts just take more time, not necessarily more skill. They tend to go wrong when the strips are too thin and look dinky or leave too large gaps. The wider strips solves that, and when it bakes the imperfections kind of blend out as the dough expands. As with most baking or crafting endeavors, being gentle and patient goes a long way. If you feel yourself getting frustrated or like the dough is falling apart in your hands, stick it in the fridge for 10 minutes and grab yourself a drink.

    • The Pie Academy has some useful instructions on improving your pie-crusts-making techniques

  • Rave: Baked the most beautiful apple tart with caramel glaze yesterday…
    Rant: then proceeded to drop it on the floor while transferring it to a cooling rack.
    Rant: I love Halloween but I’m just not feeling it this year. I just can’t seem to get excited.
    Rave: Crossing my fingers that the other Mrs. Rabbit will take off Thursday with me.

    • Emmaleigh504

      can you share the recipe? I have many apples that need to be consumed.

      • Emmaleigh504

        also sorry yours fell on the floor. I can give you apples for a do-over.

      • There wasn’t a recipe this time. I had half a batch of pie dough in my fridge from the weekend and rolled it out to fit a cookie sheet. Peeled and thinly sliced the apples before tossing them with lemon juice, a bit of sugar, and cinnamon. Arrange them all pretty like on the dough. Then combine about 3/4 cup of brown sugar with half a stick of softened butter and about 3/4 tsp of cinnamon. Sprinkle it on the apple slices. Bake at 375 for about an hour. Then spoon all the wonderful melted sugar all over the top of the apples before it cools/hardens. Transfer it to a cooling rack before it gets permanently glued to the baking sheet with the caramel.

  • Rant/rave: Last week…
    Rave: It’s going to be a busy, fun week. Date tonight, farewell dinner tomorrow with my work department, Halloween stuff on Friday, wedding on Saturday during the day and then Halloween party!
    Rant: I did not sleep at all last night (I know I was wide awake until about 3 am, and then from about 4:30/5 am) and there was no hot water in our apartment when I woke up…. Which I didn’t realize until I tried to hop in the shower. At least that woke me up. Brrrrr. Super speedy shower of desperation.

  • Aglets

    I guess this is kind of nosy- but where can you read about arrests? Like there was a mention of an arrest (thankfully) in the assault of the woman in Hill East last week and then there was an arrest last night(? maybe? i wasn’t paying full attention to the news this morning) but I’m curious to know if those arrests are for the robberies in my neighborhood (9& F) earlier this week

  • Rant-the article about crime surge in park view. I don’t feel safe here anymore. Plus all the middle of the day break in happening here and in Petworth. I have lived in the City for almost 20 years in all kinds of transitioning neighborhoods but this is the first time I really feel unsafe. And now I have a kid. I thought the schools would push us out in another few years but now its crime. Why are we staying? The crime is out of control, our in bound school is mediocre once you get passed Preschool. And Nadeau is a huge disappointment . she has no ideas about the crime surge and her answer to everything is we need more low income housing concentrated in Ward 1? I really regret voting for her. Muriel B is dumber than dumb and all she cares about is building more homeless shelters (and they are coming to ward 1) and inducing homeless folks from out side of DC to make their way here to get free housing for years. And making sure felons can’t get jobs. I fear the City has peaked on the upward trajectory, maybe its time to get out while our house values are still high.
    Rave-gonna have to think about it. just not feeling it right now.

    • That article was super depressing. I feel bad for the Park Morton residents who are stuck, but you and I can just sell our house and move. We have choices. I agree Nadeau is a HUGE disappointment and I regret voting for her as well. It’s like she lives in a different city or something. I barely, if ever hear her say anything on the crime. However, I’ve found MPD to be very responsive and somewhat helpful. Reach out to Commander Jeff Carroll and Lt Mark Hodge. There’s a monthly PSA 302 community meeting which is scheduled for Tuesday, November 17, 2015 at 7:00pm at the Third District Station Community Room (1620 V St, NW). I recommend attending and voicing your concerns. Not sure it will help because she seems quite aloof, but reaching out to Nadeau is an option too. I think it will get better, but it’s going to take a huge effort and that involves Nadeau and our local “leaders” who seem to be in la la land.

      • Accountering

        I agree, I supported Nadeau, and couldn’t be more disappointed. I think the negative with CH (another reason I would never invest there) is that with the concentrated poverty, the only kind of person who could get elected there is someone who appeals to that demographic. A candidate who ran on getting tough on street crime would have no chance.

      • To “Over It”: If you live in the northern half of Park View, you might actually be in the Fourth District, in PSA (Police Service Area) 409. It still wouldn’t hurt to attend PSA 302’s meeting, though, especially since PSA 409’s meetings are less frequent.
        I too am a disappointed former supporter of Nadeau.

        • Anonynon

          CoHI seems to be getting ‘worse’ not better IMO. If I had a family, and kids why on earth would people move here and pay absurd prices. The only reason I am here is because I found a good deal. Thankfully, I am closer to U street where I would much rather walk around (as long as its not on a Friday/Saturday night).

    • My 8-year-old read (or skimmed) that article. “Mom, do we live near Georgia Ave?” he asked me. He knows full well that we do…

    • “I have lived in the City for almost 20 years in all kinds of transitioning neighborhoods but this is the first time I really feel unsafe. And now I have a kid.”
      Georgia Ave has had it’s ups and downs. It’s cyclical. But I’d venture to say that having a kid really screws with your perception of crime. In the past, you’d probably just ignore (some) crime reports. But post-kid, you now read every report and take it to heart. Your tolerance for BS drops precipitously. This change has happened with 90% of my friends in DC who have had kids in the past few years. Things that they would tolerate while as a single or DINKs become intolerable once kids enter the equation.

      • This is exactly right. Part of the reason there has been a mass exodus form many parts of the city in the past (aside from the schools – see other thread) is that when kids get to a certain age, they want (and it’s appropriate to give them) more freedom. But then parents look around at the hoodlums hanging around and causing problems, in addition to the same age-kids who have been running loose without supervision for 4 years already, and have second thoughts.

  • Rave: Meeting the BF for lunch today ๐Ÿ˜€
    Rave and Question: I have renovated and decorated the house I want in my head about a million times. Questions for those of you who know about real estate: is there a way for me to find out why exactly the house has been on the market so long? The only thing I can thing of is that it either has something majorly wrong with it (structure? major termite damage? lead?) or someone died there or something. I see from the listing history that it has had two contracts, both of which fell through rather quickly (one in 4 days, the other in 12 days). Any ideas as to what would cause this? I know the agent has a legal requirement to disclose certain info, but is there a certain way I need to ask questions in order to have the most information disclosed? I’m worried something will be withheld in a “just this side of legal” manner and I’ll get screwed.

    • Allison

      Besides the obvious (like you, the first thing I would dread is major structural issues) it could be the buyers’ fault instead of the seller’s fault? Financing contingencies, etc.

      • I do know that it is a an estate sale, would this affect things from the seller’s stand point? I really have no clue. I am a first time home buyer so all of this is over my head.

        • Do you have a buyer’s agent? A good real estate agent should be able to help you with this, and since the 6% commission comes entirely from the seller, you aren’t paying (directly, at least) for the agent’s services.

        • HaileUnlikely

          A possibility in an estate sale is that the title to the house is not clear, though as with the buyer-related financing issues, I would be surprised if such information surface as quickly as 4 days from when an offer was submitted.

          • It could also be hung up in probate. I have a friend who technically “owns” her apartment (ratified contract, earnest money deposited) but it’s been stuck in probate for the last 6 months. The title has not yet fully transferred into her name, She can’t move forward with renovations and is actually paying rent to the estate while she lives in the place. It’s a great deal in an awesome location, but the stress on her is just crazy.

          • Ahhh, this is very good to know, thank you OP Anon!!

      • HaileUnlikely

        4 days would be extraordinarily fast for a buyer to have to pull out due to financing issues. The one that withdrew after 12 days would be on the speedy end of plausible for that. I would bet on issues revealed in an inspection, but wouldn’t go guessing in any greater detail than that.

    • “Any ideas as to what would cause this?” My guess, like yours, is that something bad came up in the inspection. You could ask (or have your agent ask) outright about the two contracts that fell through and the agent probably would tell you what happened. It’s not in their interest to have a third contract fall through, so they may just want to explain the full situation and let you make a decision on it before getting to far into the process. That said, if I were buying this property, I’d want to be sure to talk to neighbors before making a decision and have a very thorough inspector do the inspection. The fact that it’s been on the market this long means you should be able to take some time to make a good, thoughtful decision, so you probably won’t get screwed just from lack of information.

      • Thank you for the suggestion. I definitely would not have thought to talk to the neighbors (and realize now how silly that sounds). From researching comparable listings, it looks like 6+ months on the market is not unusual for an renovated property in that area. I was discussing with my BFF last night, and one option is just not to do anything at all and see if it’s still on the market when I am at my optimal position to buy plus have cash on hand for renovation. This would give me plenty of time to make a very well thought out decision.

      • One thing you could also do right now is have your agent ask the seller’s agent for the property’s disclosures. It may just say what the problems are right there in the disclosure packet, or it might give you some ideas about the questions you need to ask.

    • How long has the house been on the market? 30 or 60 days or longer may be typical for that area. I agree that asking your agent why the contracts fell through may give you the info you need (whether it was due to seller issues with financing/etc or because of issues that came out during the inspection)

      • It’s been on the market since April, with the two offers coming In June and July. Looking at listings close by, there is another similar in need of renovation home a few blocks away that has been on the market since May, and another since June. So I think it’s typical, though I have no clue regarding sales.

  • emvee

    Rave: Birthday tomorrow!
    Rant: So many people I know are having relationship problems, and it breaks my heart. Heart-to-heart dinner with a friend last night, lunch with another today.
    Rave: SO is planning a trip to a lovely cabin in WV in November as a belated-birthday adventure. Just us and the dog, hikes, meals and a fireplace. Here’s hoping this can become an annual tradition.

  • Rave: Finished half of a homework assignment this morning that’s not due until Thanksgiving.
    Rant: … Only had time because my entire office is out until after lunch, and then only our office management specialist is coming back. They flat-out gave me permission to do homework because they don’t have any work for me. I’m certainly not complaining but I do feel a bit guilty even though it’s not my fault there’s no work.
    Rave: Was ambivalent about my Momofuku reservation yesterday when I made it, but I’m actually quite excited now! I can’t wait for the weekend.

    • Anonynon

      That’s really odd that they aren’t inviting you out to lunch….in my humble opinion, if you don’t make an effort to get to know the people you work with you will never get ahead. Yes that means listening to the same stories over and over again and going to HH that you might not want to. It pays off though and makes work a bit more fun and relaxed.

      • My new office is really small, half the people are on travel, one person is out at an all-day conference and another is covering for someone in a different office. So it’s not like anyone is socializing without me or not including me — it’s just that everyone is… not here ๐Ÿ™ There was actually a happy hour for our department last Friday, and I popped my head in but no one else from my office went…..
        Long story short, I’m pretty sure this isn’t me…. (even if my old office took my good portfolio away, I did happy hour with them last week and it was great!)

  • That One Guy

    On another fool’s errand. Looking to buy a brand new Walkman (cassette player).
    When’s the last time you used a cassette player?

    • Accountering

      This can’t be serious… right?
      If serious, I would recommend Amazon – but, just, why?!? ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Haha! I had the same thought.

      • Or ebay, I mean, it’s gotta be used at this point.

      • That One Guy

        I am so so serious. My mom wants to listen to her cassette tapes. I have to either find a cassette player or spend time converting all her cassette tapes to other media formats. Cassette player seems the easier of the two.
        I’m likely screwed.

        • How old are these cassette tapes? I ask because if they are from, say the 80s, the tape part might be so brittle and fragile by now that it won’t survive multiple listens. It may actually be worth going for the conversion just to make sure the audio doesn’t get destroyed.

        • A component cassette player (if you have a stereo to hook it up to) might be better than a portable one — it’s likely to have better-quality sound, for one thing.
          Cassette tapes that are properly stored (e.g., not in a hot car) can last a surprisingly long time.

        • I heard on the radio the other day that cassettes are making a comeback and that Urban Outfitters sells not only cassettes of new music, but also boomboxes and walkmen. I am now so old that my childhood has become retro-hipster chic :/

        • Emmaleigh504

          awww that’s is so sweet. I hope you can find one.

      • Ditto Accountering’s recommendation to check Amazon – they have new cassette players. And cassette to mp3 converters

    • I’ll hop in my Delorean and pick one up for you.

    • binpetworth

      Look in Walmart. (In fact, I just looked it up online at Walmart.com and voila, they have them.) The last time I was in one (about 4 years ago) I happened to notice they still had them for sale.

    • You can easily buy one online. In addition to other suggestions, Target sells one for $20.

    • Target and CVS sell them! My sister bought one for my nephew recently.

  • Does anyone have recommendations of a family law specialist in DC or Alexandria who could help our my relative at a relatively low cost? To make a long story short, this relative’s wife has been a source of nonstop heartache for him and our family since she came into the picture a few years ago. She’s emptied his bank accounts and gotten him to a place where they are really struggling every month to keep up with their bills. Now we’re hearing that she may take off with their baby and car. They’ve considered therapy but I’m not sure they’ve gone and it’s not working if they did go. Any recommendations for professionals who could help would be really appreciated.

  • Rant: Traffic court and a cold.
    Rave: The month of October really couldn’t go any better.

  • phl2dc

    Rant: Been feeling so blah all day. I thought it was just because I was tired this morning but it’s lasted until now. Can’t wait to run after work, hope that’ll make me feel better.
    Rave: Getting back in the habit of cooking dinner every night. It doesn’t necessarily translate into leftovers for lunch the next day, but it’s a start.
    Rant: Still rather uninspired re: what to each at lunch. Salads sound so unappealing these days, and I feel like everything is either overpriced or priced reasonably for huge portions that I can’t finish.

    • I’m having the same lunch slump. My new office doesn’t have reliable freezer or microwave access so I’m down to what is cheap, can fit in a minifridge, or doesn’t need to stay cold. Today I had PB&J. PoP, can our Friday question of the day be “what’s the best thing you’ve brought to work for lunch?”
      Jk… sort of.

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