Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user Paul Sirajuddin

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.

241 Comment

  • Anonomnom

    Rave: That Photo!!

  • Rave: First night at the new place.
    Rant: Still in shambles, but I’m working on it.
    Rave: Gym this week? Fingers crossed!
    Rave: Crockpot meals are coming.

  • Rant: Emotional weeks. Trying to keep the feelings of stress, being overwhelmed, and absolute utter frustration and terror at bay. Friend’s mom is possibly an even bigger barrier to my friend getting help than my friend’s mental illness is.
    Rave: We have a great group of childhood friends who really care, who will support her no matter what, and who want her to get professional help (no stigma to mental illness within our group).
    Rant: No idea where to go from here. Friend won’t get treatment, her mom won’t call crisis when friend is a danger to herself, her mom is withholding meds, delaying get a psych appt, etc.
    Rave: Husband and I went to a good friend’s annual Halloween party in NYC dressed as Jane Jacobs and Robert Moses. We’re urban planners, if you couldn’t tell.
    Rave: Rented out my room, phew! 1700 + utilities – thanks for your help, Popville!

    • phl2dc

      …what is the deal with the mom?!

      • I have no idea and we have no clue how to move forward. She is in major denial and doesn’t seem capable of grasping the fact that if she does nothing, my friend will succeed at ending her life.

        • Accountering

          I have been following along, and every time I read this, it makes me angry/sad. I wish someone could take this lady by the shoulders and shake her. This is serious! Your daughter is going to kill herself if you don’t get her help. At a very minimum, stop making the situation worse!
          Even just typing the above is making me shake my head that this is even possible.

          • Yes. You get my frustration. We’ve said those exact words to her and stated our support if she wants to pursue guardianship and involuntary commitment and NOTHING. Well, actually, worse. Withholding meds, cancelling doctor appointments (because “she seemed better”), it’s ludicrous. My mom and she have been friends for 25 years and is at the point where she’s considering actively breaking off her friendship in protest of her friend’s negligence with her daughter (my friend).

    • Oh man, I’m so sorry you’re going through this with your friend. I don’t have any suggestions, but just wanted to say your friend is lucky to have you and your other supportive friends in her life, maybe she’ll be able to see that glimmer of hope and it can help her? Hang in there!

    • Blithe

      I love your idea for Halloween costumes!

    • You’re a planner! Okay, I’m like 95% sure you’re friends with my ex on FB.
      Small world.

    • I hope you partied in the Village! Great costumes.

    • Hi UDPie, I hope this is not too late in the day for you to see this – I just hopped on Popville at lunch. I’ve been following your account regarding your friend, and am sorry to hear that her mother is causing a serious problem with your friend’s treatment. Where is the friend? I seem to recall Florida? Even though your friend is an adult, it may be appropriate and necessary to get social services and a court involved.
      Are you comfortable calling a hotline to discuss? They could probably give you some ideas. (I pulled this number from a Carolyn Hax discussion) – National Alliance on Mental Illness, or NAMI: 1-800-950-NAMI. Do you know who her doctor is, and would you be willing to call them? They can’t give you information on her treatment, but they can listen to what you have to say.

      • Thanks so much for your message. I appreciate your thoughts. She was on the west coast and now she’s in Jersey (where her family is and the rest of our friend group).
        I’ve talked to NAMI, they were helpful in getting me to people to speak to in Jersey. I’m at the point where getting a court involved is potentially the only way forward. I tried to talk with her therapist (who fired her for non-compliance) and she just refused to speak with me or listen to me and told my friend’s mom that. Also, she’s not seeing a doctor. She’s attempted suicide twice in the past three months and only 1 doctor visit…nothing else.

        • Wow, that is a tough situation. Really unfortunate. Maybe the NAMI people can put you (or your New Jersey friends) in touch with whatever social services organization can help. I hope you’ll keep the Popville community updated. I’ll be thinking of you and your friend.

  • Rave: That photo is amazing!
    Rave: Momofuku was good! They sat us 10 minutes before our reservation time even though there was a long line, and we got a complimentary order of shrimp buns because our food was taking a bit. They were the best part of the whole meal! The cereal milk ice cream was awesome, too.
    Rant: No hot water in my apartment when I was getting ready this morning. Put in a work order. But in order to put in a work order I had to reset my internet — my Comcast service has gone out three times now in the past two weeks. At least I didn’t have to wait 12 hours for it to come back this time…..

    • You should have access to xfinity wifi if you just login into it. Not helping the crappy service, but a good stopgap nonetheless.

      • But this only works if I have access to an xfinity hotspot, right? I’ve tried this before (and use it routinely on my phone) but where I am in the building doesn’t pick up the hotspot.

        • Aww ok that is true and sucks. They’re always adding new ones. Maybe you’ll get lucky one of these days.

          • Thanks, it’s okay! It could be worse. I figure at least I get good phone/data reception in my apartment! I know some people in my neighborhood don’t.

          • Actually, for the most part, your neighbors *are* the public hot spots. If you have Xfinity, your modem/router is providing a public signal as well that’s completely segregated from your home network. It’s generally not all that great, but helpful when you’re troubleshooting an issue or reporting a problem.

          • oh, really? in that case, perhaps is because my building is majority-Verizon fios that I don’t get a hot spot? I can access it on my street, but not in my building. there is free wifi in some of the public spaces in my building if I get really desperate though.

    • I really want to make cereal milk ice cream

    • Can’t wait to try Momofuku! My friend went on Friday and said that the FLOTUS was there. Like I wasn’t jealous enough already….

  • justinbc

    Rave: So much pretty stuff this time of year.
    Rave: So many great restaurant openings too.
    Rave: Hotpot tasting menu at The Source was outstanding. I don’t think I’ve been that full in months. And that broth, I want it all the time.

  • Blithe

    Query: Fess up – how many PoPvillagers made snickers salad over the weekend? 😉
    Rave: The snickers salad thread reminded me that on Christmas Day, my Mom would make baked apples for breakfast. The green ones were stuffed with nuts and cinnamon, and the red ones were stuffed with bits of candy canes. I am SO going to make this!
    Rave: A great meet-up yesterday. I keep trying to find — or create — my tribe. I’m realizing though, that I’m enjoying being a part of many tribes, which are substantially different from each other. At some point, I need to pull everyone in one room. Maybe the world’s most disjointed party?
    Rave: Deepening a friendship that really matters to me. Yay friendship!
    Rave: New resolutions that make me happy.
    Rave: No rants. (yet) Which is pretty awesome for a cloudy Monday.

    • justinbc

      I did not. But I did go to Wiseguy’s, and there was no CBR, or even Chicken w/ Ranch, for that matter.

    • Allison

      I feel you on the “tribe” thing. I kind of have a sporadic friend here and there, but I’m lacking a sense of community. I’m hoping that when husband and I buy a house in the spring we’ll like our neighbors and I’ll be able to get one going there, but I realize that may not happen.

      • Ooh! I don’t think I realized you were house-hunting. Whereabouts are you looking?

        • Allison

          Silver spring, MD, within 1 mile of the SS metro station. Last weekend we drove past all of the homes that had sold in that area within our budget in the last two years and looked at old real estate listings.

          • HaileUnlikely

            I really like some of the neighborhoods bounded by the red line tracks, Piney Branch, and Wayne Ave. Are you including any of DC that is within a mile of the Silver Spring metro, or specifically Maryland address? There are some nice houses that aren’t too insanely expensive (I admittedly do not know your budget) just south of the DC border in Shepherd Park.

          • there are some gorgeous homes in Shepherd Park. My friends own such a beauty there. Love it

          • Allison

            Unfortunately, based on some research, we don’t have a lot of faith in the DCPS school system in that area, so we’re sticking to the MD side of the border.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Fair enough. West of Georgia Ave up there was zoned to Deal/Wilson in the last re-zoning, but the fact that it was just re-zoned and there is much bickering about the zoning does not exactly inspire confidence.

          • Shepherd is one of the highest performing schools west of the Park, has been for decades. Everyone I know from that neighborhood went to Deal and Wilson or Banneker. This was some years ago so I don’t know it the times have changed much but that’s pretty much Yellow Brick Road as far as DCPS goes.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Yes, Shepherd Park Elementary is very good. I wonder how they all got into Deal and Wilson before, though. Shepherd Park was zoned to Coolidge High School through this year, though based on the current proposal of unclear legal status, will be zoned to Wilson beginning next year. Details aside, though, the one thing that is clear is that you can’t really count on anything in terms of what DCPS school you’ll be sending your kids to 5-10 years down the road. In the same re-zoning that got Shepherd Park into Wilson, much of Crestwood was re-zoned *from* Wilson *to* Roosevelt.

    • As it turns out, I already had a comfort food potluck planned for this Thursday evening when I read some comments on Friday by you, Emmaleigh504, and I Don’t Get It about such a potluck. I have room for a few new faces and more fattening dishes, so if you contact Prince of Petworth, I think he might be able to arrange for me to send you the details?

    • That snickers salad sounds yummy! Where was that discussed???

  • Rave: That picture is amazing!
    Rave: wonderful weekend hiking trip – waaaay more strenuous than I anticipated (or I’m out of shape?), but I took a bath with mineral salts and slept like a log Saturday night despite the crazy loud trick-or-treaters roaming the neighborhood. And even with the sore muscles, I managed to get myself to yoga on Sunday!
    Rant: Spilled coffee alllll over myself as soon as I got to work. Mondays suck.
    Rave: Light in the morning! It makes it easier (at least a bit!) to get out of bed when it’s not completely pitch black out!
    Rant: but oh god it’s going to be dark when I leave work! 🙁
    Rave: Remembered to bring my sunlight-light box thingie to work to try to help with the SAD…

    • Hopefully the box will help with the headaches too! I am with you on having the extra light coming in, but it will suck going home.

    • Blithe

      I’m considering trying a sunlight box thingie. Does it matter when you use it? As in, do you use it in the morning and/or evening when it’s dark out — or any time that’s convenient?

      • Not sure – most things I’ve read seem to indicate you should use it in the morning and not close to bed time so as not to mess up your circadian rhythms or something, so right now I’m using it for the first hour of work and then I’ll probably turn it on again around 3 (which is right around when my mood tends to absolutely plummet!), and see how things work – I’ll keep you posted!

  • Quotia Zelda

    Rant: One of my wretched children broke the dryer.
    Rave: New dryer is sooooo nice.
    Rave: I don’t care if it makes me basic. I love red cup season at Starbucks.

  • phl2dc

    Rant: Canker sore! AHHHH! D:
    Rave: Fruity candy at the office!
    Rant: Candy hurts my canker sore! AHHHH! D:
    Rant: It’s Monday.
    Rave: Feeling alert!
    Rant: I’m actually very tired.
    Rave: Thanks, coffee!
    Rant: Cosi coffee is not great.

  • Rave: I had an awesome weekend all around, dinner and movie party, dog meetup, Halloween, coffee out with a friend, outlet shopping, day of the dead festivities, drinks with my sister.
    Rant: I stopped for a pedestrian this morning and got rear ended. Now I have a headache 🙁
    Rave: I probably won’t need it, but the pedestrian was nice enough to give me his number in case I need a witness.
    Werid: MtPResident, I’m pretty sure I walked by your house last night with Otis and I thought about going up and knocking on the door, then I realized that would be creep as all get out. And not the nicest thing to do to someone with a newborn. Anyway, congrats and I hope the bris went well!

  • jack5

    Rant: Busses idling at metro stops all night long even after service hours are over… Don’t we have enough diesel fumes form VWs already? The noise is also unsettling.

    Rant: Grown adults hanging out on our neighborhood streets ALL NIGHT LONG on Halloween. They scared most of the kids away. It would be nice if we saw at least a cop car circle the block once a night… That’s the least they could do…

    Rave: Had a pretty good date over the weekend. Scary how much this woman is like me. Meh, I’ll probably screw it up somehow… 😛

    Rant: Haven’t posted on here in a long time because I can’t make a post before it gets way out of control… I think it’s long overdue for POPVILLE to create a moderated forum (like phpBB) for this section. Rants don’t just happen in the morning you know! 😛

    • “Meh, I’ll probably screw it up somehow…”
      Stop being so down on yourself!

      • jack5

        You don’t know my long history of screwing up relationships… if you did you’d believe me. 😛

        • Stop doing whatever that is.

          • Lol, anon spock. most straight-forward awesome answer of the day.

          • jack5

            If I could only “stop” not being able to predict how a woman’s mind works then I’d be a millionaire from selling books about it… Too bad that’s impossible to do! 😛

          • This is what I meant! You made it sound like it was something you personally had done to mess things up, when it now seems like you’re saying it’s not you at all! I think being able to recognize what you have the power to change and what you don’t have the power to change — and being kind to yourself about that — can make a huge difference.

          • jack5

            It was a sarcastic joke, I don’t think I have self esteem issues (at least not in this area), we’re not different I agree. It’s just that the rules of communication are always vague and most ppl don’t like phone calls any more. It may be my fault my relationships don’t pan out, but I don’t fee regret for lost love… I’ll probably only be happy with someone who loves me for who I am. That’s the cruel joke of it all. We only work with people who like us for who we are, because even if we change to help ppl to like us, that change simply can’t last and we become a person who we aren’t in life which eventually makes us unhappy.

          • Jack, knowing nothing of you or your dates, I still think most ppl appreciate phone calls esp. for date planning and getting to know you. It’s become almost quaint and romantic like opening the door for your lady. Not always needed but good when it happens. Unless someone tells you plainly they hate phone calls, I’d assume the occasional call is acceptable.

        • Some friendly advice. It sounds like you are anticipating issues developing in the relationship. While I get that this is hard not to do given past issues, you are setting yourself up for failure. Just take a deep breath and take each day as it comes. Also, its not just about “predicting how a woman’s mind works.” We really are not completely different from men, and we aren’t all crazily complicated. But if you treat every woman like she is, we will pick up on it and those of us who aren’t crazy don’t like being treated as such and will not stick around. So maybe it is something you are doing, and I agree with Anon Spock, stop it.

          • +1!

          • To piggyback: Some people are crazy complicated, but I wouldn’t think it’s the majority in either gender. Why are you trying to predict how a woman’s mind works? Isn’t it easier to get to know her and figure it out in the natural course of things? Take it easy, get to know the person, and I promise you’ll learn what makes her tick.

          • jack5

            Nope, it’s just an Internet post… I’m really not that cynical IRL, but these days, so many things in the early stages of dating can interfere with success that I’ve learned to be casual about it all. Too much pressure creates diamonds, but too much pressure in a relationship creates chaos… I’m always casual and unassuming in early dating to prevent expectations from growing too fast because early attraction is fickle in this world. 🙂

          • What does “casual and unassuming” mean in practice?

          • jack5

            Casual, meaning if the attraction fades, it’s no big deal… Unassuming, as in I never assume that hanging out indicates a desire to date. In my book the woman making the first move is usually works best for me. 🙂

          • Perhaps by being too “casual” the women you date think you aren’t interested in dating, and thus, continue looking/dating around? I’ve talked to a lot of women who assume “hanging out” means someone DOESN’T want to date (as opposed to your train of thought, which seems to go “hanging out first, and if they chase me, dating later”). Perhaps wires are crossing. I don’t want to critique you because you know your situation best.. but just a thought.

  • Rave/Rant: My eyebrows are still pink from Halloween, no matter how hard I scrub.
    Rave: Finally tackling some planning for our big Japan trip this winter.
    Rave/Rant: 50% off Halloween candy. I can’t stop eating!

  • Rant: I’ve lived in DC for 12 years but the longer I stay here, the more depressing it is. I’ve got a revolving door of friends as people move to/from DC, get married and lose touch, dating is depressing/impossible, and I just feel kind of stuck in a rut. I’m thinking it might be time for me to make a move.
    Revel: Luckily there are teaching jobs everywhere. I don’t have any one place in particular that I want/need to go – I’m just looking to live near a city in a non-Right-to-Work state further west. I’m thinking Boulder/Denver, Minneapolis. A huge bonus is the decreased cost-of-living.
    Rant: Stuck underneath a giant pile of papers to grade!

    • Accountering

      They have huge teacher shortages in the republican strongholds that have eviscerated teachers unions and cut salaries! If you want to make $26k a year, Kansas will hire you on the spot!

    • jack5

      The secret is that it sucks everywhere… Technology is ruining communication. DC is not at fault, home is where you make it, but other places have terrible natural disasters like earthquakes, flooding, tornadoes, and landslides to offset the cheaper cost of living or better weather. Be careful where you choose to live.

      • DC is very revolving door. It’s very hard to maintain friendships when so many people don’t plan on staying, or will eventually move further out (because of schools). It’s true. Before we left, and before we had plans to leave, it was really depressing to watch our friends one-by-one leave DC because job ended, boss didn’t get re-elected/retired, move to the way out burbs. It’s a very DC thing, unfortunately (though less so now as the District is getting even more attractive for many, it’s just hard to stay)

        • Exactly, 12 years of this is really getting to me. Especially as someone who is single.

        • I don’t think this is exclusive to DC.; it’s true of any attractive city. People move on to another attractive city or decide to move someplace with a lower cost of living. The depressed areas are the ones where people stay put, but that’s because their options are so limited.

      • justinbc

        “It sucks everywhere.”
        And yet relationships flourish and bloom everywhere too. If it’s working for most / many / some people, there’s probably a reason for that. Surely you know some people who’ve met in DC and are happy together? Find out how, talk to others who are successful, it can happen to anyone if you make it a priority and have realistic expectations.

        • Personal relationships are on the decline everywhere. There was an article recently, I think in the Atlantic, about how even the humble party has been taking a nosedive. Unless you feel lonely all the time, why force it? I used to beat myself up for not being social enough, but as I get older I realize I (and a lot of other people apparently) prefer to spend my time in other ways and that there’s nothing wrong with that.

    • What about stay in Maryland but switching cities/counties?

      • It’s not teaching in MD/PG that is getting me, just living in the DC area. I’m fine with my current school and would be happy serving poor/ESOL populations anywhere.

        • I said in another RRRR…..if you’ve got no attachments are can be mobile, it’s the best time to do so. The risks are limited so follow your gut. not just a sadness of the day, but take a few week to really consider weighing staying vs. moving.

        • Accountering

          What would you say it is about the DC area that you don’t like, that you think would be improved elsewhere? Genuinely curious.

        • So why not switch to Baltimore? It’s much more stable (when people move, it’s just to the County, but there’s a lot of young childless by choice types who stay), but close to DC so it’s easy to maintain friendships.

    • Have you considered teaching abroad for the US government (or international private schools)? We always need teachers at military bases and in the remote embassies/consulates where there is not a strong private school network (mostly in Africa and some parts of South Asia). The pay is competitive, usually housing is paid-for, and they cover your flights and moving costs.
      In terms of dating, you’ll definitely get a lot of attention from the locally stationed male ex-pats (this could be good or bad…)

      • +1 to this. I went to an international private school and some teachers were making 100K+ plus housing and generally seemed very happy. Currently trying to convince my teacher-bf that we should move overseas!

    • leftcoastsouthpaw

      Maybe it is because I don’t work in politics, but I’ve not found DC to be that transient in nature. I’ve had my share of friends move out of the area, but not significantly more than I would imagine in any other part of the country.

      • Emmaleigh504

        +1 I agree. All my good friends from my 20s who were in my hometown are scattered to the wind. but now I’m older and not in politics, so everyone is pretty settled.

  • Rave: We had an awesome time trick-or-treating on Saturday night. The kids all had a blast, and the adults got along incredibly well. It’s pretty amazing to me that all of us, my BF and I, his ex#2 and her BF, plus the soon-to-be ex of my BF’s ex#1 can all get together, be friendly, and have a great time. I’m really glad that we’re all invested in making sure things are as good as possible for all the kids and making all of these weird extended relationships as drama free as possible.
    Rave: Looking forward to Thanksgiving! I am already planing the meal, but having a hard time find antibiotic free turkey. I’ve looked into a few farms that sell fresh turkey, and no luck so far. Anyone have any ideas? FWIW, turkey (and poultry in general) are generally dosed with antibiotics as chicks, even the organic, free range kind (I have to be very careful when I have chicken). There’s kind of a running theme of someone going to urgent care on major holidays, but I’d rather not be the one again this year!!

    • Re the turkey, order one from a farmer’s market, those should be antibiotic free, you can actually ask the farmer. Dupont Market definitely has them, I’m sure smaller markets have them too.

      • The thing that I have found is that you have to really dig to find the real answer. For example, one of the farms listed on the DC Foodies page that Anon Spock mentioned definitely does not have completely antibiotic free turkeys. I went to that farm for cider and apples and asked. One person said yes definitely antibiotic free, the next was unsure and said check the website; website says they give them antibiotics as chicks. I have found that a lot of organic, free range, no added hormone, no antibiotics labels come with asterisks explaining that they meet the FDA guidelines for the usage, but are not actually clear.

        • Oh – looked again, I was incorrect, the farm I was talking about is not listed as antibiotic free, just hormone and pasture raised.

    • I just googled dc antibiotic free Turkey, and the first site was dc foodies. The first farm said it had totally free Turkey. The third link was a place called eat wild which advertised the same. Hopefully one of those will work out for you.

    • Blithe

      Have you checked Whole Foods? I would hope that they would have antibiotic free turkey — either for the holidays or as a special order.

      • The last time I was in Whole Foods, they did not have turkeys yet, but I also didn’t think to ask. I can swing buy at lunch time and talk to someone. Thanks for the suggestion!

    • For the turkey, consider From the Farmer, thanksgiving.fromthefarmerdc.com/turkeys . We ordered from them last year and got a lovely bird! And if you have any questions about them beforehand, the customer service there is great.

    • south mountain creamery is amazing. They should have turkeys (I get their delivery every other week, meat, milk, etc, fresh from the farm, and its awesome).

      • This may be the winner! Only $3.49 a lb for turkeys – thank you!

        • I’m almost tempted to do this too. Decent price, and will be my first Thanksgiving without a turkey in a few years (unless I go out to eat overpriced thanksgiving dinner, probably alone. Hah.) I’d love to cook one.

        • oh good, I hope you do! They are really great people and really reasonably priced, especially when you consider they are delivering.

    • anonymouse_dianne

      check out Polyface Farms at Dupont Farmer’s market. They are on facebook also. Love their

  • Rave: Dog sitting this weekend, Lucy tolerated the dog quite nicely as well as my friend’s puppy who came for by Halloween. Couldn’t get a pic of all three but caught a cute big dog/small dog cuddle.
    Rave 2: the arboretum. Beautiful fall weather and a fantastic new grass exhibit-even if you don’t own a patch of lawn it’s really cool.
    Rave 3: Cooper’s hawk in a tree by my building. Makes up for few birds sighted at the arboretum.
    Rave 4: that NYT Teddie’s apple cake recipe

  • Rave: I had a very relaxed weekend and actually managed to get some sleep.
    Rant: I have decided that I probably need to give up coffee until I can get the pregnancy-related heartburn under control. Tea really isn’t the same.
    Rave: Busy week of seeing friends ahead followed by an out of town wedding weekend.
    Rant: I need to find something that fits to wear to the wedding.

  • Rave – that photo is gorgeous.
    Rant – At a work thing for the next few days. And my boss just asked me to take notes for this meeting while my (male) coworker next to me plays candy crush on his phone. Because only women can take meeting notes apparently.

    • Is saying no and delegating to male coworker an option? He clearly needs something to do.

      • +1. Who can get away with playing games on their phone in a meeting? That’s ridiculous. Even if you end up note-taking he should at LEAST not be playing games.

    • I feel you on the note taking. Everyone who doesn’t do it thinks it’s easy and it’s not as simple as it seems. Then people want to look down on it, like it’s some totally administrative thing. It’s a lose lose.

    • Or maybe your boss wants it done by someone competent.

      • phl2dc

        +1. I think the fact that your male coworker sits around playing Candy Crush is a good indicator that your boss may trust you more than him.

      • Maybe, but I’m always asked to do administrative tasks (get coffee, distribute agendas, take notes etc) while my male coworkers are never asked to do these things. It’s frustrating.

  • Recommendations for a quick ish oil change and more generally a reliable honest mechanic near Shaw? Work change makes distads in eastern market no longer convenient.

    • I trek out to Japanese Auto Care. It’s an easy walk to metro from there, and they’re amazing. For an oil change I probably wouldn’t make the trip (I just get it done on the cheap when I’m home in DE), but if you need work done they’re great.

    • FtLincolnLove

      We take my husband’s car to DP Auto Service on Connecticut & Fesseden. Granted, it’s not terribly close to Shaw but we trek out there from Ft Lincoln. Once my Subaru is no longer under warranty, it’ll go there too. They are honest and straightforward, and get the work done quickly. One of the few mechanics we trust in the area.

  • Rant: For reasons not worth getting into here, I haven’t been able to find out my maternity leave benefits (if any) yet, despite asking about them for well over a month. It makes planning much of anything past January really difficult.
    Rant: Having mild panic attacks over all kinds of life planning, partially as a result of rant 1.
    Rave: Pretty much finalized my registry this weekend after months of research on car seats, strollers, etc. It feels good to have that part done, at least.
    Rave: Long, lovely Saturday walk around Presidio Heights, Pacific Heights and points north. San Francisco hasn’t failed to impress me yet!

    • I am jealous that your registry is done. I’m just starting to do my research on all the baby stuff and it’s beyond overwhelming for me.

      • If it helps, when I put together my registry, I emailed some trusted friends for their “must have” recommendations and their “skip this crap” lists. I cribbed most of my registry from those emails. It made the decision-making process a LOT easier.

        • I’ve been asking a lot of friends for their advice and it has been helpful. For some reason, it’s still just really overwhelming for me.

        • +1 to this recommendation. My other go-tos are Consumer Reports recommendations and Amazon ratings. I built my whole registry on Amazon, then moved over a lot of the bigger items to a local store that does price matching and free delivery.

        • Maybe ask a friend for a copy of the registry they put together? You could add and delete from there. And it IS overwhelming. I had decision fatigue very quickly. It made wedding planning feel like a cake walk.

      • visit Lucie’s List. She has great recommendations. I didn’t have a real registry (whole Jewish thang), but she was helpful in sorting through what I was considering. Amazon gift cards were the best thing I could have received.

      • I’m sure your friend have told you this, but do not blow a bunch of registry items on newborn layette sets, that lasts for about five minutes. Also, I wouldn’t invest in a bunch of swings, vibrating seats, etc. until you know how your baby rolls. Mine could not get to sleep with a bunch of activity. Finally, you don’t really need a diaper genie or a rocking chair ;-).

        • I don’t have any of those items on my list except for the swing and seat and am curious if you can say more about why you’d exclude those! I actually registered for three different baby seats — a swing, a rocker, and one of the bouncy BabyBjorn things — thinking that we could really use a place or three to deposit a fussy twin or two, with some options to choose from. But I’d be very happy to cross things off the list!

          • One thing that was absolutely essential for the first six months was the RockNPlay – is that what you mean by the rocker? I can go more into the benefits of it, especially if either of your twins ends up having reflux.

          • We received a couple swing seats, a vibrating seat and a vibrating rocking bassinet, and found that our son couldn’t get to sleep with all that motion, so they sat around unused. Of course, there’s no way to know this until you meet the little people. Because you are having two, you definitely should do what makes sense for your sanity!

          • Yup! Rock ‘n Play it is!

          • agree – RnP is essential. The crib was useless until about 14 weeks, really. He slept in the rock and play (or my arms) until he could roll over. Not my choice, mind you, but the RnP is essential.

          • Also funny how things have changes… I’m only 4 years post-baby stage and I have zero clue what a rock n play is!!

        • disagree about chair – I slept in my glider for the better part of 16 months (almost exclusively for the first 16 weeks). Best gift I received was my aunt and uncle buying it for me. I hate the thing now after so many hours in it, but for some kids, it’s essential. Also couldn’t be without my breast friend. If I had to do it again, I’d buy a co-sleeper. that’s about it. We had a momaroo but my son didn’t like any of those things (no swings, not even any carriers. I was the carrier. yes, it was pretty awful after the first 4 months to be honest). Some kids do, some don’t

        • It’s funny how think vary from baby to baby and mom to mom. All of my kids were small and in newborn clothes for at least a month. I could not have lived without the vibrating bouncy seat, especially with more than one kiddo. The swing? we had a cheapo one but it did the job and made the rounds with our kids and then friends’ kids. I also had a co-sleeper that became a storage basket because I actually co-slept (i know, terrible mom). However, my top three must have items were my boppy, my ring sling, and the bouncy/vibrating chair. I agree that you won’t know until the kiddos arrive what they will prefer, so my advice is just to keep the receipts!

          • 1) everyone said to not buy newborn clothes….but I ended up needing them for a little bit. Unprepared. (well, I DID have newborn onesies in case but needed pants).

            2) the vibrating bouncy seat talk reminds me of the sex and the city episode when Samantha babysits…..”tell me that’s new?”

          • I was the same way with the oldest! My mom had to buy him a preemie outfit to go home in because I had brought a 0-3 month outfit and he was literally swimming in it. I had one newborn sleeper and had to go shopping as soon as I got home. Also, we had no newborn diapers, only size 1s. Total fail!
            LOL at the SITC reference!

      • Check out baby bargains, it’s a great resource. New editions come out every year or two, and I think they have a website to go with it.
        For us, the bouncy seat was indispensable with my first. Too soon to tell with #2. Also love the ergo, especially great right now since it’s not too hot for the infant insert. Used the ergo until my daughter was two years old, and it’s fabulous now with the baby too. There are different types of soft structured carriers out there and different people have different preferences, but I’m a fan of the ergo.

        • The Ergo was one of the first things on our list! I’m sort of going wild with the babywearing options. I already bought a Moby and Girasol woven wrap, got a beautiful ring sling as a gift and hope to get an Ergo 360. I was thinking of registering for a TwinGo, as well, but realize that’s probably serious babywearing overkill.

    • I’m sorry about the leave benefits…. I seem to recall that CA has something like unemployment for maternity leave/FMLA? Not sure if this is actually the case, but I can ask my BFF.
      And yay for having the registry finished!!

      • CA has amazing benefits, but I’m not sure I qualify for them for [redacted] technical reasons. Basically I just need my company to tell me their policy, which doesn’t seem to be written in any handbook. And that’s proving challenging for various [redacted] bureaucratic reasons.

        • Gotcha. I hope they come through soon! I’m also a major planner, so I can imagine how frustrating this all is for you.

    • justinbc

      Right now might be the best time of year to visit Napa, just after the crush season. Although with babies incoming I imagine you would have to mostly sip and spit (although personally I have no opinion on those who consume alcohol while pregnant, as long as they’re not waking up hungover in a ditch).

      • We were just there a few weekends ago and it was incredible! Honestly, one of the best weekends of my life. I didn’t even need to try wine tasting to enjoy it, either. There are Michelin-starred chefs/restaurants all over the place, many with prices that compare (very) favorably to a meal at, say, Rose’s Luxury. And there was cute sightseeing and nice views. One of my favorite things about living here is having Napa and neighboring towns so close by.

    • Related set of questions / fears / feelings of being totally overwhelmed. We’re looking to buy a new-ish used car. The main criteria are that it 1) is super reliable, 2) has enough space to accommodate two adults, two baby seats and a decent amount of twin gear, 3) is small enough for crowded city streets (not a big SUV or minivan), and 4) gets good gas mileage. Probably in that order. We also both prefer cars that are responsive (they don’t take a long time to accelerate, brake etc.) It seems like we can’t find anything quite right that doesn’t cost a fortune. Any help out there? We recently rented a Nissan Rogue for our trip to Napa and were surprised by how much we liked it, but don’t know anyone who owns a Nissan to vouch for it personally.

      • my parents had a Rogue and traded it in for an Escape. I personally don’t think the Escape is big enough for what you’re looking for. I would consider a CRV (would probably be easy to get a newish one off of a lease), a Forrester (not the best gas mileage, but definitely an extremely good car), and a ford Edge. We rented an edge – larger than the other two – but it was amazing. I loved it – drove like a car, good gas mileage, and TONS of room. I would also look in to a Pruis V and an Equinox (chevy). Good luck!

        • anonymouse_dianne

          I had a 2002 CRV that I loved. Traded in for a Mini Cooper after I broke up wi

        • anonymouse_dianne

          I had a 2002 CRV. Loved it. Traded for a mini cooper aft

        • I’m now a bit worried that all of these options are too big, even if they meet my other criteria. For those of you who drive these small SUVs, how comfortable would you feel maneuvering with them in a tight three-point turn, then going backward for about 20 feet into a parking space? I’m pretty confident in my maneuvering skills, but am thinking a smaller car would be a lot better, all considered.

      • A regular Prius is great – tons of storage and lots of headroom. Easy to park as it has a fairly short wheel base. You should be able to get a used one for $15-22K, depending on mileage, age, and amenities. They uphold their value really well. Toyota has a strong warranty and service program (read the fine print).

        • I’m leaning very strongly in this direction and am looking at the Prius V too. The biggest downside is that they seem relatively unresponsive, which freaks me out when dealing with some of the very steep hills in SF. (Specifically, I’d worry that when going uphill, I’d roll back a lot before moving forward.) But there are a ton of them on the road here, so I guess people just get used to it?

          • My dad has a Prius V – it feels a lot bigger than the Prius (I have driven both versions extensively). I think it would be harder to park in SF. I’d say the Prius is more responsive than a regular car at red lights and stop signs at the hills – the electric motor is driving until you hit 5 (or 8?) mph. The electric motor will always be more responsive initially than a gas engine. Best thing for you to do is take a test drive – you’ll need to learn how to alternate between the gas and brake pedals with two feet. It’s definitely a skill you will need to learn with any car in SF.
            Funny story: my dad and mom met in SF. My dad taught my mom how to drive on the hills of SF with his stick-shift Chevy truck in the early 70s. If you want to crap your pants, drive an unfamiliar stick-shift on the hills of SF. It’s not for the faint of heart.

          • This is super helpful (and funny!). We’ll definitely test drive the two models. And I had to do that gas and brake at the same time thing a couple weeks ago and agree it’s totally crap-your-pants worthy, especially if it’s new to you and there’s a car right on your tail..

          • Yes – do that!
            Also think about what you will be doing post-kids. I know that if I moved to SF, I would spent a lot of time snowboarding in Tahoe, even if kids were in the picture. If you guys are into outdoor sports or camping (…I’m not sure), a Prius will not be good for you. I’d need something that could handle the snow of the mountains or dirt roads for camping. If it’s just urban stuff and hauling things, a Prius would be great.
            I once used my ex’s regular Prius to move apartments in DC. The thing can haul a TON of stuff when you flatten the back seat.

          • The more I think this through, the more I think we should opt for the smallest car we can manage — something like a Prius or Impreza rather than a small SUV. Our garage will be pretty tight and it will require some work to maneuver into it. I think that would be a much bigger practical concern than having cargo space for every item we’d ever want to haul. So basically, if it can fit two carseats, a double stroller, a diaper bag and some groceries, I think it would be about the right size.
            We don’t do very much outdoorsy travel or hauling and if we did, I think it would make more sense to rent a bigger SUV for the weekend than to always have a bigger car than we need.

      • I’m stalking the Honda HRV. I have a Nissan Altima and have been happy with it!

      • FtLincolnLove

        Subaru Impreza hatchback!! I have one and love it- perfect size for city streets and fantastic gas mileage. Can’t say how well it will fit twin gear as I have no children, but it does fit three 6+ ft men (plus myself) quite comfortably 🙂 It’s very responsive too!

        • The only two cars I’ve owned have been Subarus and I absolutely loved them both. I would buy this car (or any Subaru) in a heartbeat if my husband liked the brand more.

      • SouthwestDC

        My first and only car has been a Hyundai Elantra hatchback. At 150,000 miles it’s survived over a decade of DC-area traffic, including several years of constant stop-and-go traffic when I lived in VA. It’s taken me up and down the east coast countless times and hauled many pieces of furniture. I think it’s the perfect size for the city but you can still fit a lot in. I got it for $14k new, and nothing major has gone wrong with it yet. I believe Hyundais have gotten a little more expensive but everyone I’ve met who has one raves about it.

        • +1 for hatchbacks! They are small but so roomy. I have a 8-year old Ford Focus hatchback and it’s great. It fits into tiny parking spaces, and when I fold the seats down I can load it with furniture and boxes and other junk. I’ve moved from NY to Michigan to VA to DC with that little car.

      • Emmaleigh504

        My first car was an ’82 GMC Sierra truck. It meets none of your criteria, but I thought I’d share my love. She had a winch on the front and a tool box (with tools!) in the back. I loved her so much, even after the ac went out.

        • I’m glad you shared this because I’m mildly obsessed with GMC trucks and actually have been reading reviews of their small truck the Terrain. It isn’t right for us here and now, but a big part of me really wishes it could be. Maybe one day we’ll move to Montana or something and can get the Yukon Denali I dream about.

        • I’m glad you shared this because I’m mildly obsessed with GMC trucks and actually have been reading reviews of their small truck the Terrain. It isn’t right for us here and now, but a big part of me really wishes it could be. Maybe one day we’ll move to Montana or something and can get the Yukon Denali I dream about.

          • And I have no idea why this double posted.

          • Emmaleigh504

            The Sierra used to be little, now they are huge! It was my grandfather’s tree farm truck, then became my everyday truck. Then went to one other person when if finally died at age 22.

          • Emmaleigh504

            Oh and the best part of my truck, Sharon, was she started out red, but had faded to bright orange by the time I got her. She was perfect for all those years I worked at a mall. Never lost my truck and won every parking spot battle. 😀

          • Emmaleigh504

            (Now I’m looking at the Terrain and want it, even though it’s totally not practical for me.)

          • jim_ed

            Honestly the Terrain isn’t THAT big. Its the same size as an equinox, which we drove and easily street parked for years here in DC before trading it in on a new Cherokee recently, which we love and would recommend.

          • The Terrain is a really nice size and I am a total sucker for the way it looks. My biggest concern about the gas mileage, honestly. It’s hard for me to justify buying a (relative) gas guzzler when there are so many good fuel efficient options. But we might keep it on the table for the moment anyway, and at least give it a test drive.

          • jim_ed

            I loved the way the terrain looked, and we were just about to buy one before we drove the new Cherokee. Fit and finish were much nicer in the jeep, and comparable V6 got better gas mileage and has the electronic engine stop for city driving, which helps. I think the Terrain makes a perfectly fine city vehicle assuming you’re not putting 20,000+ miles on the odometer every year.

      • I Dont Get It

        I am still driving a 1998 Honda CRV. It looks bit beat up but drives like dream.

  • Rave: Fun Halloween party with old friends and tons of kids
    Rant: Wow those kids can be loud
    Rave: Another friend showed up to the party with a large box of used baby clothes. Score!
    Rant: Heartburn keeps kicking my butt. Zantac and Tums works for a little while but I really just want it to go away already. Crossing my fingers that 22.5 weeks from now it will be gone.

  • Pablo Raw

    Rave: Went to Black Hill Park in Germantown to help a friend with a photo shoot; the place looks amazing; so colorful! I didn’t even see that in Shenandoah. Just incredible.
    Rave: Lots of photography work this weekend and in general this month; very little free time in November.
    Rave: The opportunity for some really creative photoshoots.
    Rave: I’m finally going to get a tattoo, the delay happened because for a long time I couldn’t find the right image for what I wanted, but it finally happened. The tattoo artist is specialized in the kind of graphic that I want.
    Rant: I need to burn a bridge. It’s the only way to survive.

  • HaileUnlikely

    Rant: Halloween in my neighborhood. This was my first time being home on Halloween when it fell on a weekend, so I didn’t really know what to expect and bought a whole bunch of candy. Only got two groups of trick-or-treaters. The first group was three teen-agers, all roughly ages 15-17, wearing all black clothing plus cheap masks but no other elements of costume. Second group included two older teens or young adults in similar “costume” plus small child (probably about age 7-8) not in costume. One of the older ones appeared to be purposely standing just out of my sight, but I knew he was there because I saw them walking up to the house before the rang the doorbell. I suspect that I got zero legit trick or treaters and two groups of older teens / young adults looking for people to rob or houses to break into.

    • That is really discouraging — bad enough to get non-costumed teens looking for free candy, but even worse if it’s non-costumed teens casing houses to break into.

    • Isn’t it more likely they were just teenagers looking for free candy?

      • HaileUnlikely

        The first group: probably, yeah, but having been robbed at gunpoint in my neighborhood by a group about the same age all wearing masks on another non-Halloween day, it is hard for me not to think the worst on a day that gives everybody a free pass to go walk around in a mask.
        As for the second group, I don’t know. The experience of seeing a young adult in a mask walk up my driveway to my house and then position himself up against my house in a position just out of my line of sight while he sent a little kid in completely ordinary street clothes (no mask, no nothing, same clothes any kid would wear to school on some random day) up to my door to ask for candy was kind of eerie. Why didn’t he just come up to the porch with his little brother or whoever it was? Why didn’t he give the kid the mask since the kid was the one asking for candy and he was just hiding?

        • Allison

          Yeah, that sounds sketch. Trust your gut.

          • HaileUnlikely

            I saw lots of teenagers in masks out and about shortly after dark, though most did not come to my door. Thus, I took off the top glass panel from my security door and handed out candy through the security door without opening it. It felt really lame, but it seemed to be the the least bad of many possible courses of action, none of which were clear winners.

          • “Thus, I took off the top glass panel from my security door and handed out candy through the security door without opening it.” That’s a good idea — I might do that in some future year.
            I don’t really like having to open the door to strangers when I’m the only person at home, so for the past couple of Halloweens I’ve been hiding out and pretending I’m not home.

    • I’ve been through a lot of Halloweens in DC and while the second scenario is a little creepy, I doubt he was casing the place — just another bad/lazy parent taking his kid around for free candy.

      In my neighborhood, all the official block parties get all the kids and we don’t get any trick or treaters at all. This has only happened in the last few years and it bums me out.

      • PDleftMtP

        My first year in the neighborhood I stocked up on candy and was bewildered when no one came. I thought I was the creepy neighbor whose house no one dared go to.

    • When the surly, un-costumed teens show up, that’s when the lights go out on the front porch. They were definitely after candy and not casing the joint. But still. They could say, “Trick or treat” or something…

  • Rave: Boss was (relatively) normal in big hairy meeting this morning after a week of him being a totally rude, unprofessional glassbowl. (say it aloud).
    Rant: Still has me so focused on one part of my job that it’s all I do. Assistant didn’t even know that I’m supposed to do other things. Something’s got to give.
    Rant: My dad’s been in the hospital for three days with a scary infection. Sometimes I really hate living on the other side of the country.
    Rant: I definitely ate all my feelings this weekend.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: work is a mess and I don’t have the energy to un-mess it.

  • jim_ed

    Rave: Took our daughter trick or treating for the first time and she was so unbearably goddamn cute in her little lion costume and holding her candy pail. She didn’t seem to grasp why we were going to people’s homes and knocking on the door, but she certainly understood the concept of grabbing candy from a bowl when offered, so at least she gets the important part.
    Rant: We had so few kids come to the house this year, especially in comparison to a few years ago. Considering how expensive candy is, it felt pretty wasteful, though I imagine the kids that did come to our house enjoyed getting giant fistfuls of candy from us.
    Rave: As has always been the case, all the kids that came to our door were exceptionally courteous, and another Halloween went off without a hitch.

    • justinbc

      I’ve always wondered how you balance giving out candy, while also taking your own kids out. Do you just have one parent at home and one who goes out? We always just go out to drink so we don’t have to deal with them.

      • jim_ed

        Well our daughter isn’t even two yet, so her trick or treating consisted of a grand total of 6 houses on our block, so it was pretty easy for us to both go with her and run back to the house if we saw a group of trick or treaters coming. I guess we’ll figure it out as we go as she gets older and wants to cover more geography.
        That said, I look at handing out candy as kind of a neighborhood obligation, since we can afford to buy candy, and it leads to positive interactions with kids in the neighborhood we otherwise don’t interact with at all, so I imagine one of us will always be there to do so.

        • justinbc

          I think next year we might actually participate, just sit on the swing and hand it out so they don’t have to knock. Once we get our gargoyles up on the roof it will pretty much be expected, I imagine.

  • Rave: Nice weather.
    Rant: Stetson’s finally closed. It was a great last night (if anyone sees my live, please use the pre-paid envelope to return it) but I’ll miss my neighborhood bar and the wonderful staff.

  • Rave: Best Halloween party I’ve been to in my adult life on Saturday! Most memorable for sure! Danced and partied with some friends. Met a cute guy at the party and we hungout the whole time and got along really well! He has my number. I didn’t get his (oops, I was tired). Whether or not he messages me, it’s more like affirmation that I am doing pretty well not online dating.

  • Pablo Raw

    Rave: Is it too early to start talking about the Unofficial PoPville Orphans Thanksgiving Dinner? “UPOTD”

  • Rant: Found out on Saturday that my dad was planning not to attend my brother’s wedding next month.
    Rave: Managed to talk him into attending by telling him that boycotting it wasn’t going to change any of the things he’s upset with my brother about, and that it was the wrong time for him to be drawing a line in the sand.

  • Rave: The dedication and fortitude of my comrades as we confronted the white nationalists/supremacists/Nazis of the National Policy Institute, at the National Press Club, on Halloween night!
    Rant: The presence of said NPI bigots, in such large numbers.
    Rant: The police arresting only one person (as far as I could tell), one of our only members of color.

  • Sad to read the motorcyclist who crashed on 16th St two weeks ago has died from his injuries
    Rant: Lingering cough, general malaise, ready for a nap
    Rant: Perhaps a spicy Eritrean bread tomato salad with yogurt (Fata) will help, especially with end-of-the-season home grown tomatoes

  • Finally starting to really look for a new place to buy. I need to get out of my current condo. Anyone know anything about the Madrigal Lofts at 811 4th st NW?

  • RANT: For the second time this year, I have a close work colleague dealing with the death of a beloved young person due to gun violence (different colleagues). Just so senseless and sad.

  • RAVE: The WeWork party at Union Market on Saturday night. Amazing party and not insanely packed. But still a good crowd and awesome costumes. Perhaps the most attractive crowd I’ve seen in DC at any one event 😉

    • Big RAVE of all: toward the end of the party, there were a ton of individually wrapped Cornflake Chocolate Chip Marshmallow cookies from Milk Bar still leftover. I may have stuffed 10 of them in my bag before heading out the door.

  • Rave: Wonderful extended weekend. Best friend and her husband visited, had lunch with great friend from law school, saw my parents for dinner last night.
    Rant: Ate and drank all the things. It was a rave while doing it, but ughhhh.
    Rave: Using daylight savings and the fact that it’s going to be dark outside when I leave work either way to head back to the gym for winter.

  • Rave: Great weekend, lots of fun with friends and a wedding!
    Rave: First day at new job, everyone seems really nice! Just… holy overwhelming, batman. @_____@

  • rave1: First day of freedom from the crazy boss – she has officially been demoted from management and transferred to “special projects” (with the goal of transferring her out to another office permanently).
    rant1: She is apparently already driving her new colleagues crazy. At least she’s not anyone’s manager in the new position, so people can freely tell her what they think of her “ideas”
    rave2: I love my coworkers! And I can stop spending all my mental energy on quitting/finding a new job — there will continue to be some frustrating aspects of where I currently work, but this job really is quite possibly my dream job (for now, anyway) and I’m trying to recapture my enthusiasm for it, after a year of dealing with way too much boss-induced stress.
    rave3: working from home, migraine is almost gone, and I have snuggly purring kitties

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