Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user Miki J.

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.

170 Comment

  • Rave: Transferring to my new office this afternoon! Words cannot explain the simultaneous relief and nervousness.
    Rave: Going to keep thoughts about current office to myself.
    Rave: Last school presentation (ever?) this afternoon. Totally prepared.
    Rave: Today is a good day.

  • Rave: House under contract within 36hrs.
    Rave: The weather
    Rave: life

  • HUGERANT: Anyone have any tips for dealing with neighbors who fight a lot, particularly in the middle of the night? I am woken up to it a lot, and last night’s was particularly bad – screeching / screaming, stomping around, etc. I took my dog out because she gets scared and could even hear them from outside. I knocked out of frustration, but no one answered. I’m losing sleep, white noise machine does not help completely (I’m a very light sleeper). I guess this is a bit more sensitive than asking someone to just turn music down. I’ve e-mailed the condo board about it too. Ugh anyone had to go through this before?

    • Call the police? I’m not sure. That’s really tough because if it’s a domestic issue I wouldn’t want to put anyone in danger but I also wouldn’t want anything to happen to your neighbor (not to even mention how frustrating and stressful the noise must be).

      • I’m not sure that calling the police in a domestic-violence case would put someone in danger. On the other hand, if there is danger, a police call probably wouldn’t remove anyone from the situation.
        So far you’re hearing yelling/screaming, but it doesn’t sound like there’s physical fighting, correct?
        On the abuse front, Carolyn Hax often recommends RAINN — try contacting them, explaining the situation, and ask what they would recommend.

        • Could you try a note if you are not comfortable talking to them? My husband and I are extremely loud and passionate people and we used to fight incessantly during one early bad spot in our marriage. Honestly, we didn’t know how loud we were until someone actually told us (fully admit that we were young, self-centered jerks). One of our neighbors put a note under our door one night and told us how much we were disturbing her so we made it a priority to keep it down after that (and apologized). Sometimes people need to be brought out of their own drama to see how their actions are affecting others. We were mortified and clueless. But if you think it’s to a higher degree than that (i.e. physical violence), or if they’ve already been told how loud they are/been asked to keep it down, I would try the police next.

  • Rave: clean quiet house. At least for the next week or so. I’ve spent the whole weekend in organize mode. I have a pile of clothes to get ride of and pulled out all my spring summer stuff.

    Rave: Went on a great walk yesterday. Stopped by a yard sale, then walked to Union Market, then back to my house. The weather was perfect

    Rant: Final leg of the walk was marred by Cat-Callers on H Street. I’m not even kidding I had three different men harass me within 5 minutes. The last guy was the worst. He actually followed me on his bike. He could see I had headphones in. I’m obviously ignoring him. And yet he would not leave me alone. He then stopped along side me as I was waiting for the light to change and kept asking my name. I pretended I couldn’t hear him and finally he left. All I wanted to do was listen to Prince and enjoy my day. Is that too much to ask?

    • ^^Pretty girl-advertisement^^^ lol

      I apologize for our species where some of us do not know how to approach an attractive lady and respect her right to reject our advances.

      • Seriously, you are part of the problem. This rant isn’t a humblebrag or a LOL girls just need to learn to take a compliment. This is a real rant about how awful it can be to not be able to walk around the city and not be bothered. It’s not a joke and it’s not cute.

      • I have no doubt that skj84 IS an attractive woman, but catcallers aren’t really picky. That is to say, there is little protection in dressing like a frump. The harassment continues regardless.

        • HaileUnlikely

          This is very true. I have a step-sister who weighs over 300 pounds and gets catcalled more often than one might expect.

          • I think any time something about your body stands out it attracts more of that kind of behavior. Baffling what strangers think they can say to people…..

        • I used to get catcattled all the time, and now hardly at all (except when I was in India last month). I guess they don’t like women over the age of 30? Not that I’m complaining.

          • Unfortunately that is not the case. I turned 47 on Saturday. On Friday while leaving the gym I had a man say to me “How you doing, baby.” So apparently it never ends.

          • I think the incidence of catcalling goes down the older we get (yay?), and also with kids. However, I was pretty much harassed by one lovely catcaller with four children in tow once, so some do not discriminate at all.

          • justinbc

            Yeah, plenty of them do it even when the woman is with a male counterpart as well. Some of these guys really just do not GAF.

          • Turning 32 this year. I was wearing gym clothes and no makeup on my walk. I’ve been catcalled while wearing a giant winter coat with the hood up before. They really don’t care what you look like or what you are wearing.

          • Maybe I’ve just perfected my RBF over the past decade.

          • Emmaleigh504

            My RBF seems to attract the guys who demand I smile. I think I hate the smile demanders more than the “hey baby” guys.

        • Separate from the anxiety this behavior causes, I do not understand and never have understood the purpose. Does it ever work? Does anyone who is catcalled ever respond with, “hey, here’s my number?” I have to imagine not. So if there’s no reasonable expectation that anything will come from the interaction, what conceivable purpose is there to being rude to and/or harassing a stranger who happens to be walking by? I just don’t get it.

          • I think it gives them a feeling of power?

          • Some people get their kicks from sexually intimidating and harassing others. It gives them a power trip to know that they can make others uncomfortable or scared.

          • It is said that the purpose is to exert control over a woman. If a catcaller can force a woman into responding, he wins. You know how toddlers try to get your attention for no reason at all, just to know that they can? Like that.
            Of course, then you get the unhinged ones who take offense at being ignored. That’s scary.

          • justinbc

            Yep, I think TBD / wdc pretty well hit on it. There’s a psychological disconnect here between someone who thinks this is “OK” and the people who view it as ugly, tacky, offensive, harassment, etc. Men talking in disparaging tones to women has existed virtually as long as the genders have been identifiable, it’s really only a recent (within the last century or two) idea that women deserve equal status. Breaking some men out of that mold is as big of a challenge as getting others to accept that racism is a real thing, and that it generally goes one way.

      • houseintherear

        Take it from me, it’s not just pretty girls getting harassed.

  • rant: mad at a friend. invited her to NYC a few months ago. she claimed she wouldn’t be able to go. turns out, she is going with someone else. I confronted her and she says I never asked her. LOL wtf. having a hard time dealing with this
    rant: headphones are expensive
    rave: starbucks is the only thing putting a smile on my face
    rave: thinking of getting a puppy! maybe a dalmatian 😉

    • Wow. How massively uncool of your friend. I’m in a semi same boat. I’ve been planning a trip to the beach for Memorial Day with my best friend since February. I’m now just learning she’s planning on going out of the country with her boyfriend instead. I still plan on going, but now I need to find another guest to go with.

    • Sorry about your rants but:
      do NOT get a Dalmatian puppy. They are cute and fun in the beginning but they get HUGE and have a TON of energy that cannot be contained to two walks a day. They are NOT city dogs.

      Think about getting a smaller, lower energy dog, perhaps around2-3 years old.

      • Greyhounds are good city dogs. They’re usually at least 2 or 3 years old, and they’ve had all the crazy run out of them. All the ones I’ve known have been extremely relaxed.
        Please consider a shelter/ rescue dog before you spend hundreds on a “purebred”. The state of dog breeding is appalling. There are no truly good breeders, because they’re all aiming for a breed standard that is all about appearance and does not take the health of the animals into account.

        • +1!!!

        • +1. Also, if you really want a purebred, there are many breed specific rescues you can look into. I second getting a 2+ year-old dog. Puppies do have a way of suckering you in with their cuteness (I fell for it!), but I honestly would never adopt a dog under the age of 3 again. You really know the personality you’re getting with an adult and the bonus is no obnoxious keep you up all night/ruin everything in the house phase!

        • I agree with the overall sentiment here, but disagree that there are “no truly good breeders, because they’re all aiming for a breed standard that is all about appearance and does not take the health of the animals into account.” A year after getting our dachshund puppy from a breeder, we still think she represents the very best out there — extremely cautious about the health and happiness of the animals are raises. She actually made a point to connect us with a her vet before we decided to put in a deposit because it was important to her that we know how much of a priority this is. She also regularly checks in just to see how our little guy is doing. It takes work to find people like this (and in our case, months of pretty diligent work), but they are out there.

          • +100. I’ve had the best experience with our breeder and two years later we still keep in touch fairly regularly. We will be getting Tiny Dog#2 from her in July.

          • I’m sure there are some true animal lovers breeding dogs out there, but even minimal care for that many dogs is expensive. The best way to recoup your costs is to have some “champion” show dogs, so that the puppies can be sold for more money. The best way to get a champion is to follow the AKC’s asinine breed standards.
            Also, the vet that you talked to is heavily invested in the breeder’s operation– she spends a lot of money on those dogs. It’s in the vet’s best interest to keep the breeder breeding more dogs to sell. And they probably see a lot of each other and are friendly. So I can’t say I’d find her/his stamp of approval all that reassuring.

          • We can disagree on this (as I think we have before 🙂 Or at least perhaps agree that there are exceptions to every rule.
            While I agree that the vet’s prior stamp of approval can mean little, it does mean a lot that all three of the subsequent vets we’ve seen have agreed that we have an exceptionally healthy little guy..
            As for making the business profitable, I’ll say that my only sadness in buying our dog is that our breeder doesn’t seem to make much money, if at all, from the process. She lives in a remote West Virginia town and she doesn’t do championships. She breeds about 10-15 dogs a year, so I don’t think it’s very expensive. Mostly just time-intensive the 3-4 times a year when there is a new litter. She has a bunch of repeat owners, some with 3 or four of her dogs.
            That said, Dachshunds aren’t really show dogs and they’re relatively unfussy to breed. They can be bred the “old fashioned way” and don’t usually need c-sections. Our dog, and nearly all of his siblings, were delivered at the breeder’s home.

          • We got our dachshund from a very small scale breeder 6 years ago (1-2 times a year). In our case, we did look into rescue organizations, however, we were turned away because of having small children (dachshunds are notorious for being bad with small kids). The dog was (and is) very healthy, and as it turned out, excellent with the kids, including youngest anonachild who born a year after we got the dachshund.
            I also know people who breed hunting dogs. Great, great care is taken to ensure that the gene pool is diverse (inbreeding = unhealthy hunting dogs, which is bad for business/ reputation), and the dames and sires are incredibly well taken care of, as are puppies. The puppies that are not well-suited to be working dogs are adopted out as pets.
            I get people have problems with breeders, and honestly, every other dog I have owned as been a rescue and a mutt and the dachshund was not my choice; but there are reasons why people chose certain breeds. As long as a breeder is an ethical one, I see no problem with someone choosing to spend a great deal of money on a pup of their choice. But people should also be very cautious and do a great deal of research on breeders.

        • +1, Greyhound= horsecat
          Also, smaller does not necessarily equal calmer, most terriers are small.

          • Yeah, even among my terriers that are the same breed, it’s the smaller one that’s more hyper.

          • Agreed, I have a Jack Russell mix (that’s obviously mostly Jack) and he really likes to show why they’re called Jack Russell Terrorists.

        • Hundreds? I know people who have spent a couple thousand on pure bred dogs. A former coworker spent almost $1000 on a golden retriever. Insanity.

          • Yes! Some of the most popular breeds are some of the most difficult to breed (French bulldogs, for example) so cost around $3k-$4k.

          • My parents have a Golden (they essentially adopted her from a breeder friend) who is the mother of several grand champions; her puppies started at $3k.

          • There’s a purebred Doberman at WHS right now, 7.5 years old and gorgeous. If I didn’t have my dog I would get him.
            And yeah, French Bulldogs are artificially inseminated and delivered by c-section, so you bet you’re paying out the wazoo for that.

          • Any why are those dogs difficult to breed? Because of inbreeding, and because they’ve been bred to be “cute”, which means selecting for a specific set of traits, like a small “cute” backside for that “cute” little stumpy tail to sit upon. Pugs, for example, often have to deliver via c-section. They are literally unable to give birth without assistance thanks to breeders. But hey! They’re cute, right?

          • Depends on the breed, but a lot are over $1000 from a reputable breeder, especially in this area.

          • @jeslett I want that dobie sooooo badly. I know exactly which one you’re talking about, he’s so pretty and sounds so friendly!

          • @wdc, definitely agree – the breeding practices for those “cute” dogs are awful. We have a rescued bulldog (mostly a French bulldog but part something else terrier-like) and he is in pretty poor health because of a bad experimental backyard breeder and so much inbreeding.

        • Emmaleigh504

          +1 to greyhounds! they are great city dogs. They are content to sleep most of the day. Give them a comfy bed and they are good to go.

          • I’ve heard that Great Danes are good city dogs as well — “bigger” does not necessarily mean “needs more walking/exercise.”

  • Rave: What a weekend, beautiful weather, Central Park, biking, sunshine, and flowers and the crowning event : best friend got engaged and we got to celebrate with her.
    Rant: Our other childhood best friend wasn’t there to celebrate, because she is in the throes of bipolar disorder…
    Rant/Rave: Thirty pages from the end of The Power Broker. It’s been a worth-while undertaking but I’m kinda ready for the next book!
    Rant: All the shit that goes along with refinancing two homes plus sorting out tenants, being a tenant ourselves, and trying to decide what’s the best thing to do next…
    Rave/Rant: Have our bi-city work and personal travel logistics sorted (took us FIVE hours on Saturday but we did it!) and Mid-May to October looks insane. But exciting as well because it potentially involves India, China, Ecuador, and France.

    • Small rave: with 2 refi close together, you only have to gather docs once.

      • Absolutely right – thanks for a bit of positive perspective. Plus – we’re getting a great rate and possibly taking money out. So that’s all good.

    • Caro books are a major time investment, but I always learn so much. The LBJ books are amazing. Caro is a national treasure, as far as I’m concerned. (Oh, and his wife, whose name I don’t know but who apparently does his research—she must be a saint).

      • So interesting – but now I want to talk to everyone about everything I learned! And I want to write the next book about the Rise of NYC ;-). He is definitely a national treasure as is his wife! I was wondering why Jane Jacobs didn’t get into The Power Broker and was reading some online articles that said he had many many well-researched chapters that had to be pulled as the book was too long. Can’t wait for someone to get their hands on the chapters that didn’t make! The LBJ books are on the list…but I might wait a year or two before diving in!

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: even though I got plenty of sleep last night, I’m sleepy this morning.
    Rave: got plenty of sleep last night.

  • Rave: Wonderful weekend. Sunshine, friends, biking, good food and beer.
    Rave: Done with nonsense. I have too much to do to put up with it.
    Rant: Nothing that’s at the level of a rant.

  • Rant: I’m afraid that if this trans equality thing goes to far and we have bathroom parity, senior Republican elected officials will be able to dress as wrestling coaches and menace Ted Cruz’s little girls.

  • rant/question for the PoPulace: So I use a lockbox that’s attached to a pipe outside my building in order to let my cleaners have access to my keys. on Friday they sent me an email that they couldn’t get the lockbox to open despite having the correct code. I checked this weekend and sure enough, it’s totally not opening even though I haven’t changed the code! The cleaners would have been the last people to use the lockbox three weeks ago. I have NO idea what could have happened and now my keys are stuck in the lockbox. Has anyone had something similar happen with a lockbox? Why would it stop working suddenly? It seems my only real option is trying to pick the lock while following instructions from a YouTube video.

    • HaileUnlikely

      Aside from the lock just being jammed and malfunctioning, the other obvious possibility is that the cleaner accidentally changed the code last time they returned the key after use. I have seen some lockboxes where it is surprisingly easy to accidentally change the code.

      • i would guess that’s what happened… i can’t think of any other explanation.

        • I had this happen once, and it wasn’t because the code got changed. The lock just got jammed somehow. It was a long time ago and I can’t remember what I did to fix it, but I suggest Googling the problem.

          • i have been googling! i haven’t found much– it seems like the only way is to try to pick the lock to get my keys out. sigh. if you remember your trick or have any suggestions, i’d love to hear them!

          • I just searched my email and found some correspondence between me and a Masterlock representative. I’m copying it here in case it’s helpful:
            Thank you for your email.

            Please try shaking the lock box in a downward position while pushing down on the top front door while the correct code is entered. After the box has been shaken/pushed a couple of times, try depressing the release button. This will help open the lock if the key is impeding the opening of the lock.



            E-Commerce Support
            Master Lock Company
            Contact Form Details
            Source: Masterlock.com Contact Us vs 2
            I purchased the 5400D lockbox on 7/21/2013 and it has already stopped working. We can’t get the box open with the correct combination. Our houseguest was locked out for over an hour late at night, and now the useless box is permanently stuck to our window bars with the key trapped inside. This is unacceptable– the product is only three weeks old and is relatively protected from the elements. Please tell me how this situation can be remedied.

          • My lockbox has a tiny lever that you press down to open it, and I recall using the butt of a hammer to force it down in this situation. Haven’t had a problem since.

          • thank you for posting that, Jill! I will try that tonight.

        • HaileUnlikely

          Is your cleaner an individual person or a company. If it’s an individual person, and the person who can’t get in now is the same person who last serviced your property, I wouldn’t worry and basically chalk it up to “shit happens.” If it’s a company with multiple employees, you might want to just check with a supervisor to make sure the employee who last serviced your place hasn’t left. If the person who last serviced the place no longer works with the company, and now others can’t get in, I’d be concerned/paranoid that an ex-employee was up to something.

  • Rave: Lovely weekend, complete with checking out a new playground with friends, a softball game, and Caps closing out their first-round series.
    Rant: Hard to get going this Monday morning.

    • Btw–finally got to drop my broken engagement ring off with the lovely folks at Shah & Shah. Neat place, though slightly overwhelmed by the offer to try anything & everything on. Found fun multicolored strands that can be necklaces or bracelets depending on how you wear them, but they aren’t cheap!

  • Bear

    Rave: Awesome weather and a fun pre-birthday weekend hanging with friends and taking a quick trip to Harper’s Ferry, even though…
    Rant: The trip got off to a kind of rocky start because we left late and couldn’t find somewhere to eat that didn’t have at least a half hour wait. So we got there late and didn’t have time to go on the hike I wanted to go on. But it was still a nice afternoon.
    Neither a rant or rave, maybe a request for advice? We need to do some extensive renovations on our house. We bought our place knowing that within 5 years it would need some major work. We’ll pay for the renovations by refinancing – rates are much lower now than they were when we originally bought, and both of our credit scores are now in the top tier so we’ll definitely get a better rate. Problem is the comps in our neighborhood aren’t there yet – we won’t be able to borrow as much as we need just yet. That said, there are several houses on the market near us and if they do sell near asking we’ll get there. Things don’t sell quite as quickly in our area as the do in DC proper but I’d expect that they won’t stay on the market too long. What are the chances of rates going up significantly in the next couple of months?

    • HaileUnlikely

      I have no wisdom on future rates. It might be worth looking into the Fannie Mae HomeStyle renovation loan for the refi, though. They calculate the loan-to-value ratio using the “as completed” appraised value (which I do not know how they estimate) rather than the *current* appraised value. I do not know whether this would be advantageous or even available for your specific situation, but it might be worth looking into.

    • Accountering

      Rates are going to go up, at some point. Over the next couple of months they are not going to skyrocket, and very easily could be flat though. Worst case scenario you are looking at another .25%, but there really isn’t anything in the short term that is going to cause rates to rise that quickly, absent something crazy happening with the Fed, or oil.

      • “Rates are going to go up, at some point.”
        This is indisputably true. However, I have been saying the exact same thing since 2011, when I got out of my 5 year ARM (in year 7) when it was at 2.75 (!!!). Who the hell knows.
        That said, I just refinanced on Friday at 3.25% for a jumbo 30 year fixed. As Accountering said, rates are so low now that even if they float up a quarter point now you’ll be fine. (Although I get the frustration at missing the bottom – I missed an extra 1/8 decrease by one day, and still haven’t stopped thinking about it.)

        • Bear

          Thanks guys, this is what I’ve been thinking and just needed a little reassurance that waiting wasn’t going to make a huge difference. Plus, mortgage interest is deductible, so my thinking is it’s better to wait and risk a small increase rather than refinancing now and having to take out a home equity loan later to make up the difference, which I assume would have a higher rate.

        • houseintherear

          DAMN! I did a refi a month ago for 30 year at 3.75… should have waited!!

          • I just bought a place earlier this month with a rate of 3.75 – I just looked up rates for jumbo vs. regular loans and the jumbo rates are somewhat lower, which probably explains the 3.25.

        • Whoa. Perhaps we should look into refinancing again–our current rate is 4%.

      • Aaargh — I need to get my act together and refinance.

        • What’s holding you back? It was really quite painless (as compared to buying at least). The process was quick and the lady even came to our house to read/sign/process all the docs.

          • Getting the paperwork together — mainly because I am behind on filing my taxes.
            Was also discouraged because last time I tried to refinance my condo (with the current lender), I sent all of my information to them and then there was just radio silence — they didn’t respond to my e-mails.

          • Didn’t I send you my officer’s info? She and her staff were great, I never had radio silence and she works in the afternoons and evenings, so you don’t have to call ger during the work day.

          • I will second Jeslett on my mortgage loan officer. Ours went above and beyond, answered all emails, etc. And when Wells Fargo wouldn’t stop demanding a visa from my wife (that didn’t exist) she finally drove all the way from Warrenton to Gaithersburg to try and explain in person! It was really stressful, but I never had a doubt it wouldn’t get done with her driving the process.

          • It’s been a few years since I’ve refinanced, but it was probably the most painful thing I’ve ever done in my life.

          • Jeslett, you did indeed send me the info on your mortgage person — I just haven’t pursued it yet (because of the unfiled taxes).
            I suppose I should at least get things in motion…

  • Rant: Yesterday in Petworth my bf and I were driving near New Hampshire and Gallatin when we saw a collared dog sniffing around a traffic island with no owner in sight. We turned the car around and my boyfriend got out. We didn’t see the dog again at first but then we saw him dart across New Hampshire, almost getting hit by a car, at some point I think a car honked as the dog was out in front of them. Bf crossed the street after him, the dog ran up Gallatin and he followed, then the dog came back around the corner of New Hampshire. I turned the car around to follow them in that direction when I saw the dog go in a front yard so I pulled over. I could see my bf talking to the woman in the yard, who was doing some sweeping or raking. She seemed completely unaffected by the news that her dog had been out and was continuing her sweeping/raking without even stopping to thank my bf or to acknowledge her returned pup. She had said something to my bf about the dog getting out through the back of the yard. I was pretty upset, having seen her dog within an inch of his life, so as I approached on the sidewalk, I said “That was so close, he almost got hit.” She immediately and vicously bounced back with, “Okay, I can do without the attitude.”

    My boyfriend came walking toward me and we just went back to the car without saying anything else. It was really upsetting that we stopped to help, that this dog almost died, and she was completely unaffected. I’m not sure if she thought we were just walking down the street and observing all of this and being critical, and not realizing that we stopped to help, but I don’t think it should matter. If that were my dog I would have been very concerned. And if she gave any indication of that, I would not have been so blunt with her, but she didn’t appear remotely concerned for her dog’s well being. She also had a young girl with her in the yard, so perhaps she didn’t like someone pointing out her carelessness in front of her child, I don’t know.

    I can’t think of how I could have gotten the gravity of the situation across to her another way, my boyfriend’s friendly approach was certainly not doing it. It really upset us and even still now I’m quite bothered.

    • Accountering

      Seems like there is nothing you could have done to get the gravity of the situation across to her. She doesn’t really care about the dog.

      • Agreed. You can’t force people to see pets the same way you do. Plenty of people consider them to be animals, not family members. This pets-as-people worldview is new.

    • I hear what you’re saying, but from her perspective, she’s standing in her front yard, someone is talking to her (politely, presumably) about how her dog got out, and then someone else (you) comes up with (you admit) a confrontational tone and piles on. I don’t know that I’d have reacted well to that myself. Her response might be the politest one you could expect in those circumstances.

      • Yes, I suppose that if she were the type of person to be apologetic and regretful of the situation, I would have seen that coming from her in the first place, and then I wouldn’t have felt the need to say what I said, etc. etc.

        • Wow, you completely missed the point of the comment. OK, carry on.

          • No, I didn’t. You said she felt piled on and got defensive. I’m agreeing that it’s the politest response I could have expected, considering what I saw from her before I said anything.

          • I think you may be implying that it’s justified, obviously I don’t think so, but do you think I should not have said what I did? Perhaps I’m being too defensive now, obviously I’m upset about this, that’s why I’m here, and welcome your perspective

          • HaileUnlikely

            Not necessarily “justified,” but consistent with general expectations of normal human behavior, regardless of what else you may have observed about the person previously. When attacked, it is instinctual to defend, regardless of the merit of the original attack.

          • I think there are two main points. First, the piling on aspect shouldn’t be overlooked. Your boyfriend was already having a conversation without her about this, and she apparently was interactive civilly with him (even if she appeared disinterested). When you jumped in, regardless of your tone, it’s understandable if she felt you were ganging up on her. Second, you said (and her reaction indicated) that you took a confrontational tone with her – apparently, because she didn’t show enough distress for your liking. How on earth did you expect her to react to that? While you may be concerned about her dog, it’s really none of your business. She’s at her home, and someone comes up and starts in on her with some type of tone – how would you have reacted. And this has nothing to do with “considering what I saw from her before I said anything” – by which you seem to imply that it is some sort of character flaw of hers that led to her reaction. It wasn’t – it was a typical reaction to someone who started hectoring her over something that isn’t any of her business. Your boyfriend made the point, your contribution was gratuitous and (you admit) solely because she wasn’t sufficiently penitent for your taste. Come on.

          • You’re right that her reaction completely makes sense. I was upset and that clearly came through when I said that, and then she was upset by that. But I’m confused by you mentioning a few times that it’s none of my business. I totally agree that we could have kept driving and let it play out as it would have. Are you saying that it was wrong for us to stop and make it our business? Or that by making it our business it’s expected for things to go that way? Yes she was there in her home but when her dog was in the street, it became something more than a lady and her dog in her home.

            If I had taken a moment to think it through, I should have let my boyfriend finish the interaction. I was too upset and not good at handling such situations enough to have found a route to express what I wanted gracefully I suppose. I do know that if it were me, because as I’m saying here I’m an emotional person, I would have been very upset and hugging my pet like crazy. And I’m not saying that everyone should be like that, but that is just how I would have reacted, especially after just losing a pet suddenly to illness recently, I’m probably extra emotional.

          • One more thing – the “considering what I saw from her before I said anything” – I’m not saying it’s a character flaw, but it was already not the reaction of relief I suppose I hoped to see, so right there I should have decided to keep my mouth shut I guess. People are reacting pretty viscerally to the expectation of seeing a pet owner’s relief or lack thereof when the pet almost got killed. I get that people can be shocked or whatever, this just came off as not caring at all. I can only judge by what I see. And yes it’s “none of my business.” But I’m glad we made it our business whether or not we actually helped. And if I could I would have let it go there after reading all of this.

          • You keep insisting about the dog “almost getting killed” but it’s actually pretty hard to hit an animal with a car. They’re quick. When I think of a dog “almost getting killed” by a car, it has been hit and injured and requires emergency surgery to survive. Being off-leash near a moving car doesn’t qualify. That’s one of the main reasons I think you were out of line. You created a narrative for yourself which rings false and hysterical to me (and possibly to the dog owner).

          • wdc, I will have to politely agree to disagree here. The dog was 2 ft from a moving car. There were MANY cars going through that intersection. I don’t think I’m being hyperbolic. Before I had any experience with animals dying firsthand, I would have the same sentiment as you. But I took my cat into the emergency vet once and someone ran over their dog inside their garage. That dog surely had less space to run away but now I think we are splitting hairs. This is how animals get killed and there is no taking this lightly for me personally

          • Well I think it’s obvious your intentions were very good but it’s understandable that the owner was prickly (though the mature thing IMO would have been to quietly seethe). You should just let it go.

          • This has been really great.. just one of those things that was eating at me and this interaction really helped. Thanks.. and praise be to the Rant/Revel section 🙂

          • “but it was already not the reaction of relief I suppose I hoped to see,”
            This is the problem in a nutshell. You are not her mother, or her boss, or whatever. You have no right expecting to see any particular reaction from her, much less the right to make your displeasure known when her reaction disappoints you. “It takes a village” only takes you so far – you were very nice to try to get her pet out of harm’s way, and your boyfriend (perhaps) was justified in telling her that the dog had gotten out. But policing her reactions because they don’t meet your standards? That’s way, way out of line.
            You don’t get to tell people what to do, or how to act, or most certainly how to feel. And when you tell perfect strangers, in a confrontational way, what they’re doing wrong, you shouldn’t be surprised when they don’t react well.

          • I already said that.. that it was “none of my business…” I have no control over how she reacts, nor do I expect to, nor do I want to. We all act and react to each other in this world. In that case we stepped into her business yes. That happens in this world. Right or wrong. I already said I should have kept my mouth shut, and I agree with Jill that would have been the mature thing to do. But it’s silly to suggest that you don’t have any feeling about the behavior of others around you!

      • I agree with dcd. My dog got into the street once without me noticing, and it was embarrassing to have someone point it out. I probably didn’t look “upset enough” to that person either, because I was in shock. It would have been especially upsetting to be told my dog almost got killed, with the implication that I was being negligent. That’s just not necessary.

        • Also agreeing, and curious as to what would have been “upset enough” in the OPs opinion? My dog once ran out of the house and into the street faster that anyone could get to her, and there were two adults on the porch at the time. A car was coming down the street at the time, and stopped with in 8-10 feet of her. The lady got out of her car and started screaming at me. I did apologize, multiple times, and of course was thankful the lady stopped in time. But none of that seemed to matter to this lady, and I’m not sure what reaction would have been “good enough” in her eyes. Perhaps she went on the Baroness of Baltimore’s blog to complain about me too.
          The fact is, dogs can get out of homes, fences, leashes, etc. Doing so does not automatically mean that the dog is being neglected or is not cared for. Additionally, a dog owner who sees their dog as a family pet versus being a furbaby is no less worthy a pet owner. Also, in any situation, getting an attitude with someone is a pretty much guaranteed way to get one back.

          • I’m sorry that you had that experience. All it would have taken for me would have been her putting down the rake/broom or stopping to acknowledge my bf and what just happened. Or giving the pup a pet when he came back in? Anything, anything to tell me at all that she knew this was not just him prancing down the sidewalk.

            If you apologized to the driver, she shouldn’t have continued to carry on. I think in this situation, there is adrenaline. The driver that almost hit your dog was probably feeling that adrenaline too of course. I had good intentions, and emotions were running high, and perhaps it would have been better to say nothing after reading these responses. I think in the moment, instinctively, I didn’t want there to be the chance of her not realizing how close it was. I don’t think my boyfriend told her that he was in the street, so she didn’t know. I can only hope that by my being clear about the close call, insulting or not, perhaps there’s a slightly higher chance she will deal with whatever it is that is allowing her dog to escape out the back, rather than do nothing?

            I’m a pet owner myself, and I truly understand that accidents happen. I would not ostensibly “rub it in” if I thought she had shown a sliver of accountability for a simple mistake.

          • Martha — I vaguely remember people posting about one or more dog owners in that general area I’m wondering if this is one of the dog owners in the area whose dogs area whose dogs are constantly getting loose/lost and being returned to them.
            If this is one such owner, then (unfortunately) I’m not surprised that you got the response you did. She might also (if applicable — no idea as to your respective ages) have been perceiving the interaction as “young newcomer telling older long-time resident how she should take care of her dog,” and if so, that might have factored in too.

          • Hi textdoc, good to know, she was probably 10-15 years my senior, again with young girl there as well. And I have a feeling we are both fairly new to the neighborhood if I’m going to guess!

  • Rant: as a small business owner in the district for the past 6 years there are so many logistical challenges dealing with DC and the expense of doing business in The District. Reading everyday of all the small businesses closing is daunting. I believe in my business and I love what I do but there are days when the negativity weighs on me. Even comments on this site have been heartbreaking to read. People are quick to be so mean. I’ve learned to have a tough skin as you have to especially with one sided sites like Yelp and other review sites but like I said some days are hard especially when you have put your entire life savings into something and all your heart and soul into it. Luckily more people must appreciate what we do than not since we are still able to pay the bills is an increasingly competitive and seemingly impossible industry/city. I wish and hope folks would be a bit more compassionate and consciously make it a point to support small businesses and not bash them, so we don’t have to keep reading about yet another small business closing its doors only to be replaced with another chain. And if you had a bad experience we usually thrive to only get better and better over time so give us another chance before writing is off. Email the owner or manager of you have a complaint before jumping to an anonymous platform like this blog or review sites to lash out. We are truly appreciative to hear from you personally and would at least like the opportunity to rectify a less than great experience of it is possible. Thanks for listening to my rant.

  • Quotia Zelda

    Rave: Youngest Zelda is back and had a great time in Quebec City.
    Rant: I hate starting off the week already tired.

  • I Dont Get It

    Rave: First time in working out in the morning in probably 10 + years. Actually It felt good getting there at 5:45 am!
    Rant: Just because it is 5:45 am doesn’t mean the rest of us can’t see you or smell you.
    Rave: Spent Sunday trying to clean up the mess that has grown up in the backyard the last few years. Made good progress but still some way to go!
    Rant: Lizzy woke me up at 1:3 am Sunday morning when she became stuck under a small chair.

  • Rave?: Does anyone have any recommendations for tent camping with nearby or onsite hikes in Virginia within about 1-2 hours driving? I’m overwhelmed trying to search.

    • It’s a bit longer drive, but Assateague Island allows tent camping.

    • Low Water Bridge campground, just past Front Royal, is a great spot not too far from a lot of the hikes in the northern part of Shenandoah. The staff is super friendly, and you can BYOB so long as you’re quiet and responsible about it!

    • It’s been a really long time, but I used to go car camping in George Washington National Forest in Wardensville, WV. It’s just within 2 hours of here.
      I really liked it, it’s the kind of place where you have to bring water because you can’t really trust the pumps, but there are compost toilets and fire pits.

  • Rave: PARCC testing is over, except for makeups. Very happy, that was miserable for the kids and me as well!
    Rant: Lost my bag with my keys this weekend. I am pretty sure the bar at left it at and went back to that one and the only other bar I went to after Friday night. The bar where I thought it was had a different over-the-shoulder black bag, but not mine. Only thing I can think is that someone took mine by accident… If that’s the case hopefully they’ll come back to swap them out and the bar will call me.
    Question: Does anyone know what to do when you’ve lost your only set of car keys? Can a locksmith help with that situation? Call the dealer?
    Rave: Game of Thrones and Veep are both back! Two of my favorites.

    • I don’t know about the newer types of keys (with chips or proximity keys), but for the older ones, the dealer should have a code number and be able to make you a duplicate.

  • Rant: I fell on my bike yesterday because my bike tire got caught in the street car tracks! It was scary because it was in the middle of an intersection and I was turning left.
    Rave: Just a few bruises and 2 nice men ran over to help me up and ask if I was okay.
    Rant: I was surfing Redfin yesterday and saw they completed the two popups on the 700 block of Morton St NW. They’re so ugly.

  • Rave: Clean room, finally! My bedroom and closets are clean and I’d say about 95% organized! I feel so much lighter and happier
    Rant: the 5% that’s left is going to be a pain to organize! I just want to pitch all of it but I can’t.
    Rave? Nice date on Friday – kind, extremely smart, interesting life so far…
    Rant? but not really sure this could go anywhere, for a number of reasons I’m not going to get into here!
    Rave: I have some very wonderful neighbors.
    Rant: Where the hell is my tax return $! Giving me a 4 week range of when I’m supposed to get it is not as helpful as I need, IRS!
    Rant: I’m in a crappy mood and super overwhelmed at work already. Blah.

    • Yay for good dates!!
      Re: the tax refund, I got mine in two weeks, almost exactly. Everyone I know has gotten it in 1-2 weeks.

      • Yes, I can’t remember the last time the IRS took more than two weeks to deposit my tax refund. The DC OTR on the other hand…. 3 weeks this year, which was a big improvement over the 4 months it took last year.

        • I electronically filed my taxes on 4/15, and my federal refund hit my account on 4/22. Based on comments here, I’m expecting DC in September.

          • Hmm…do you think I’m getting jerked around because I didn’t get everything in to file until the 17th? Whahaaaa! Also, I sure as hell hope DC doesn’t take until freakin’ September to give me back my money!

          • No, the 17th was not late.

    • They’re sending a lot of them out as checks this year (even if you elected to do direct deposit) so I’d check to make sure you didn’t have a check that got lost in the mail.

  • Rant: Alarm did not go off this morning.
    Rant: I woke up late.
    Rant: Train was leaving the platform as I rant to try and catch it.
    Rant: Train I did catch had to wait forever between Rhode Island Avenue and Noma.
    Rant: Late to work.
    Rave: Found out that my sister and mother are planning a birthday dinner for my 40th birthday next month. So happy.

  • Rant: Did not get the house we applied for. The realtor said they ended up going with someone they knew at the last minute. Very disappointing.
    Rave: We’ve decided to re-focus our search to the Towson area. The schools are much better, and there’s a larger inventory of homes that fit our needs. Hopefully this means we will have an easier time finding/applying for/getting a house that meets all of our needs even if we have to let go of a few of the wants.
    Definite Rant: I really hate all this uncertainty. I had really wanted to be in our home when the kids and I move versus having to move into his house at the end of the school year and then into whatever rental we end up in. As it stands, it looks like I have two moves in my very near future.

    • Oh no! I’m so sorry to hear this, I know this has been such a roller-coaster for you guys! Hoping you find the right fit soon!

    • Bummer about the house. I hope you’ll be successful soon as well. I’m staring down some moves and consolidations and storage options coming up and I am dreading it!

      • If you have any ideas on how best to par down, please share! I also need ideas as to how best live out of boxes. Ugh, not looking forward to that!

  • Rave: The curbside box advertising FREE HERBS! was a great way to get rid of things that are taking over my garden. I like to think someone was enjoying mojitos or a sage-infused roast chicken because of me.

  • Dear Friends,

    On last Saturday, April 22, at 12.30 p.m., somebody broke into my car and stole my backpack with my laptop inside. It was in Columbia Heights, in front of Giant. I didn’t have a backup of my information. My work, research, writing and projects of the past 5 years were in that laptop and I’m really devastated about it.

    I’m offering a $700 to whoever return my laptop and the information. I don’t care how you got the laptop, and won’t really ask any question. I just want the laptop back. It is an old laptop and doesn’t have any value other than my information.

    Please let me know if you know something. I’m appealing to people’s kindness to help me recover my information. There are hundreds of hours of my work in there.

    My phone is 267 423 2002.

    Thank you!


    • You might want to post this in the “Forum” section too (although the Rant/Revel pages probably gets more views than Forum posts do), and/or repost in Rant/Revel earlier in the day (like 9:45-10 a.m.), so more people see it.

  • Giant rant: I’m driving from Michigan to DC. I stopped at a rest stop in Ohio and locked my fucking keys in the car!

    Revel: roadside assistance

  • Rant: Apparently my lunch went sour. Figured that out the hard way.
    Rave: No one saw my horrible I think I’m dying face.
    Rave: Finally started lifting again.
    Rave/rant: Busy week ahead.

  • Rave: Cleaned up the wazoo on Saturday. But noticed that spiders and other creepy crawlers are starting to come in, and want to take action by buying those RAID foggers and setting them off (arm flex emoticon here)
    Rant: missed gin and gardening! Ugh, traffic

  • justinbc

    Rave: Picked up a great cookbook for our new sous vide circulator, can’t wait to test it out this weekend.
    Rave: Roses are already doing incredible, several hundred buds are about to open this week. We’re going to have an absurd amount this year, even if the aphids and sawflies eat half of them.
    Rant: Soaker hose is total crap. Going to dig it up and go with a drip irrigation system instead.

  • Andie302

    Rave: A woman chased me down across the national mall because I dropped my wristlet from the bikeshare bike and didn’t realize it. She was totally out of breath and went above and beyond trying to catch up. SOOOO thankful!
    Rave: Great long weekend!
    Rant: The house inspection did not go as well as expected.
    Rant: Now I have to wait for the owners response to know whether or not I’m moving forward.
    Rant: I’m not good at waiting.
    Rave: Things will be fine either way!
    Rave: Went to Timpla DC last night for an outstanding dinner! Get on the list people – totally a wonderful experience. (It’s not cheap at $65/person and BYOB, but it was an excellent 5 course meal with an added bonus at both the beginning and end of the meal, a great night of conversation with some new people, and a wonderful atmosphere in a row house in Petworth.)

    • Andie302

      Forgotten additional food rave: Went to Sumah’s on 7th after checking out yelp for our neighborhood and it did not disappoint. The owner let us sample several things before ordering, and the container of food we walked away with must’ve weighed 4 lbs. So so good, and delicious leftovers!

    • Wait, you can BYOB to dinner?? That’s amazing–I have always wanted that to become a concept and wondered how it could work. Sorry about the house inspection. Are there just a lot of expensive problems?

      • Andie302

        Yes – it was in someone’s home, and we brought a bottle of wine with us. It was pretty cool! There are a bunch of little things with the house that aren’t surprising, and one big ugly thing that needs to be dealt with right away – which wasn’t something I anticipated. There’s a bump out at the back of the house that has the only full bathroom and it’s not structurally sound.

      • Formerly PVR — I think the BYOB is because it’s a not-entirely-legal rotating restaurant.

  • I walk a lot, like 3+ miles a day. Lately, the back of my thigh (what is that, a hamstring?) has been tight and sore after a walk, enough to give me a little limp. It takes a day or two to settle down, which means the next day’s walk is uncomfortable, or doesn’t happen at all.
    Any ideas for preventing this?

    • Yoga? You don’t have to take a whole class, just look up what poses would be good for stretching that muscle. I get hip tightness from walking too much, and I’ve found that holding a hip opening pose for 5-10 minutes a day helps a lot.

    • Also alternating between flats and heels could make a difference.

    • houseintherear

      May or may not be helpful… My right hammie is strongly affected by my lower back and a bulging disc I have just above the tail bone. When one tightens up/hurts, the other does. The best stretches I’ve found are the yoga pigeon, and also putting one leg up on a high table and stretching across the leg to touch the opposite hand to toes. Doing both of those morning and also evening has kept the hamstring pain at bay.

      • I could try some stretching. I wonder if it’s related to my knee, which was a bit of a lemon to begin with. The knee doesn’t necessarily hurt at the same time as the hamstring, but it feels stiff. So possibly related. This pigeon pose, is that for your back, or your thigh?

        • Is it the same leg as the bum knee? It could absolutely be related. When you have something going on anatomically, your body will adjust itself to compensate for the injured/stressed area, which can lead to injuries/stress in other areas. So it would make sense that the knee and hamstring would hurt at different times. Not sure what the knee deal is, but perhaps a soft knee brace?That might help.

        • Definitely recommend stretching. I walk to work regularly and had this same issue – I actually found that my hamstrings were tight because I sit at work for about 8 hours a day (not because of the walking). Daily stretching and taking standing/walking breaks at work have helped immensely.

        • houseintherear

          Be careful with the pigeon pose with a bad knee. For me, that pose is really helpful with opening the hips, which makes my back feel good, which makes my hamstring feel good. Bodies are so complicated.

          • I hate pigeon pose! Unless I can use a prop like a bolster, it’s my least favorite pose!

  • Rave: Less than 5 months until the wedding! Pretty much have all the vendors lined up, now it’s just a matter of paying this thing off.
    Rave: Save the Dates are rolling out, people seem to love it. It’s different, its a passport since our wedding has a travel themed.
    Rant: In the middle of all of the wedding planning and work, I’ve been trying to get my condo ready to be put on the market. Had the carpet cleaned this past weekend but in picking up and throwing stuff out, it’s remarkable how much crap I have. I don’t throw anything away, even bills that are 4 years old.
    Rave: Seems like most of the condos in my building go in less than a week so I keep asking myself is all of this extra work really necessary but it is what it is.

  • Rant: Tired of being stuck managing U.S. business stuff (receiving mail, depositing checks, etc.) for immediate family member who lives abroad.

    • uff – you are a saint. My mum did that stuff for me when I lived abroad, and she was saintly for having done so. Not sure I ever fully thanked her!!! (I think all the silk scarves and things I got her partially helped??)

    • Hmm, depositing checks? In this day and age can’t they manage that abroad themselves? We manage all our US finances electronically. Of course, there are a few things that need to be done via check, which thankfully my dad handles for me.

      • Family Member can do some of this stuff electronically, but not all of it.
        And don’t even get me started on all of the alumni mailings that are coming to my house for Family Member. (I’ve asked FM to get removed from their mailing lists.) Like I don’t get enough junk mail as it is??

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