Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user Elvert Barnes

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.

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90 Comment

  • Bear

    Rant: Wearing a pair of pre-pregnancy pants that I thought would fit. This was a mistake.
    Rant: Husband slept poorly last night, and his tossing and turning kept me awake too. I just want a good night’s sleep…
    Rave: Tomatoes and peppers are starting to come in! I may have overdone the planting this year with 10 tomato plants and 11 pepper plants. Homemade hot sauce for everyone!

    • Embrace the elastic waistband! I was so much more comfortable once I switched to maternity pants.

      • Bear

        Yeah…I have for the most part embraced the elastic waistband, but all my maternity pants are in the laundry. I thought these would be fine because they were too big for me previously, but I was wrong. At least I’m sitting up super straight today?

    • Next spring I will be very happy to take some seedlings off your hands. Just sayin!

  • Rant/Potentially a Rave: I came here yesterday to rant about the horrendous traffic back-up happening on 395 as you’re exiting on NY Avenue. It has added 45 minutes to my commute and happens all hours of the day. One commenter mentioned that it’s because the signal at NY/NJ is out of sync with the 395/NY signal. If this is affecting you, please go to 311 and report it here: https://dc311.secure.force.com/ServiceRequestHome under Traffic Signals Investigation. The more reports we get, the more likely it will get fixed.

    • agreed! missed your rant yesterday, but thanks for the link. traffic was especially bad yesterday on 395 too, starting all the way at pentagon city. I couldn’t even figure out why.

      • My husband and I are at our wit’s end with traffic over the past month. We both work in VA at non-metro accessible jobs but we live in DC. It took him 2+ hours to get home last night and we can’t figure out why. Safetrack causing more cars? Change in light timings? Construction on 395? It’s a nightmare and I’m not sure it’s even a temporary problem. we have no idea what to do.

        • That One Guy

          Install Waze on your phone, if you haven’t done so already. Also, instead of taking 3rd street what about just going down Constitution to either 14th street bridge or Memorial Bridge? Lastly if the traffic looks bad it’s easier to just grab a drink or dinner before trying to make your way back in to DC.

          • Eh, I wouldn’t install Waze if you care about privacy. Waze is constantly using your location (even when you aren’t using the app) and won’t work unless you enable it to do so. I liked the functionality of Waze, but I deleted the app when I realized how much privacy I was giving up. Google maps also offers fairly accurate traffic information, and it does so without using your location when you aren’t using the app.

          • I’ve used Waze and tried every possible way that Waze doesn’t send me. I’ve taken the Key bridge, the roosevelt bridge, memorial bridge. Ive gone down K street, up 16th street, through rock creek. I’ve even gone way out of the way and back down into the city to see if coming from up north would help. It doesn’t.

          • Waze hasn’t helped my husband with his commute out to non-metro accessible VA – the issue is 50 and 66 for him. There are no other good options. His commute has gone up by 30-45 mins.

          • Oh and yeah we’re assuming it’s due to the SafeTrack work. It started that day.

          • @Cleveland

            Google owns Waze.

          • Yeah, there aren’t many alternative routes for those of us that commute to VA. The DC part of the drive is never the problem.

        • Yikes. It *only* took me a little over an hour to get from Alexandria to Capitol Hill last night, but I left at 4:30.

        • From Where in DC to where in VA?

        • Wow, that sucks. Will the employer allow telework a few times a week? Or a flexible schedule where you come in much earlier and leave much earlier (or come in later and leave later)? If other people in the office are having the same problem with the DC-VA commute, would it be possible to metro or VRE part of the way, and then split an Uber/Lyft from the station to work?

  • Apology: To the driver in the SUV next to us last night at the gait, sorry for the bubbles!
    Rave: Littlest Anonachild spreading his love through Columbia Heights last night… ie, blowing bubbles out the car window.
    Rave: Kids begged to go to &pizza last night; I’d never been. It was really good, and the staff were super cool.
    Rant: I have done zero packing. Blaaaaaah

  • Rave: Elevating bassinet and swaddling the little monster seemed to help his cough and his sleep. He only woke up once last night!
    Rave: Spinach, pineapple, yogurt smoothie for second breakfast

  • Rant: Yesterday’s headache is now coupled with a stomachache/nausea this morning. Ugh.
    Rave: My best friend from HS will be staying with us for a weekend next month. And it’s on a Spirit home game weekend too! I might splurge on some reserved seating.
    Rave: New sparkly earrings
    Rave: Lots of little bell peppers and kale growing in my garden. I need to come up with a plan for them.
    Rant: Medical bills that expect you to fill in your credit card info and mail it (or write a check). Ummm, no. Not happening.

  • Rant: Had a phone interview scheduled for yesterday and the person never called. I sent an email asking if they’re still available/if we need to reschedule, and no response.
    Rave: My dad, who is a white Republican from the South, who I’ve had many frustrating political conversations with, has been posting things on Facebook in support of Hillary, gay rights, gun control and even shared a post from a woman about mansplaining. I guess people do change!

  • Revel: 3 more days
    Rant: my classroom looks like a tornado blew through it
    Revel: One of my coworkers might buy my old car
    ?: therapist says I’m so attached because I don’t have any close relationships in my law
    Revel: 5 days til I board my flight to Quito!

  • Rave: Excited for the all the new places finally opening up around me – Swampoodle, Homestead – excited to try some new things! Now we just need Slim’s to open so I can bask in diner food goodness (hopefully!) – c’mon, Slims, c’mon!
    Rant: My cube mate will not shut up this morning. I am so close to losing my sh!t right now and screaming at her. ARGHHHH! Just shut up, shut up shut uuuuuppppp!
    Rave: Feeling a bit more optimistic about life in general.
    Rant? I had really weird dreams last night, and I can’t remember what they were about, I just know that I woke up and felt so disoriented by them. Now I just feel grumpy and tired.

  • Found Iphone:

    Last night about 6:30 pm, I found an iPhone on the ground in the parking garage on 15th street north of K NW. Its the garage below the Subway and the Rice Bar. It was password protected so I turned it in to the staffer at the gate.

  • Rave: Lined up a side gig for the summer! Extra cash and within walking distance to my house!
    Rant: I can’t set my schedule until I get my schedule for the next show I’m doing. Which won’t come out until July. Both are semi dependent on each other.
    Rave: Got Brew in the Zoo tickets!
    Rave/Rant: My summer just went from chill to busy.

  • Farragut

    RANT: Now that I have a Maryland driver’s license and license plates, I feel like a worse driver. Is this how it happens? Haha.

  • Rave: Won trivia last night, and second interview tomorrow. Not 100% sure about the place, but experience helps you get better.
    Rave: Fella’s out of town this weekend and excited about it. Time to get all the things done. Love seems to make you much more productive.
    Rant: Need to convince co-worker to stop trying to hug me. Just no.

  • rant: i hate my job. well, that’s not totally accurate. i love my company. i hate my current assignment/client/project, and am staying around because it’s important to my team and the success of our contract and crucial to winning the recompete. i’m a team player and moving to another project now is all but impossible without (a) being a horribly shitty person or (b) leaving the company outright. but i’m miserable. and it’s starting to show, which isn’t good.
    rant: after 20 years of no cavities or dental work, save for braces and my wisdom teeth extraction (surgery), i was informed by my dentist last week that i have THREE (3!!!) cavities in my molars. i spent 4 hours in the chair yesterday getting them filled. i should also note i had 7 baby teeth pulled as a kid, so i really dislike dental work. and i’m sore today. very.
    rant: that i have no raves. it’s been a long, emotional week. orlando, current job, missing old job, pulled my quad, wondering if i really like it here (coming up on my 1 year anniversary of moving to DC). blaaahhh. i need a day with puppies to make me feel better.

    • Re: part of your last rant — it took me three years in DC to start feeling like I actually had a life here that I’d be okay with. things will look up!

    • It took four hours to do three fillings? That’s such a long time! My dentist has done three in under an hour for me before (my teeth are a mess).

      • And also, sorry to hear your last rant. I hope you get some puppy time soon and start to feel a bit more settled.

    • Same thing happened to me– no cavities until I hit my 30s, and then I got three all at once. Like you, I was traumatized as a child by having lots of baby teeth pulled for orthodontics, but I actually didn’t mind getting the fillings which were quick and painless.

    • Yeah – 4 hours seems crazy! I have horrible teeth – every one deeply filled with old old fillings (as a child, by a horrible sadistic dentist that never even used novacaine, so I feel you on the fear!) and am now starting the root canal/crown process and even the most extensive of those were only an hour.

      Also – for those planning your future life expenses/retirement etc. you need at least $1000.00 a year for dental work if you want to keep your own teeth. Or plan a long dental-tourist vacation in Mexico or Costa Rica

  • Rave: Nats!!

  • Rant: Whomever you are Ilaf Ayyash please step away from trying to block development at Union Market.
    Rave: It’s my friday

  • RAVE RAVE RAVE: Finally worked out the MedStar WHC hospital bill for my wife and we owe $200, not $5000!! It only took 10 months, but whatever.
    Rave: Finally received our tax refund from DC!!!
    Rave: Montreal tomorrow!

    • Yay! I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I see my DC refund by July. Still working on the freakin’ Federal one!

      • mine’s still being processed. 🙁 I guess that’s what I get for waiting until tax day to file.

        • Wow, I’m so sorry to hear DC took so long for you guys. I really wonder why. I filed about 3 days before it was due and I got my refund two weeks later…..

          • We were flagged to verify our identity and since we moved to Canada there was a delay in us finding this out! As soon as I found out I gathered all the documents and sent them. FWIW, they received our verifying docs May 10 and we received the refund today. They say after they receive your docs you should get the refund in 30-45 days. It really annoys me how many hoops we had to jump through to get OUR money back There has to be an easier way. We had no issues with our US or Canadian returns. They came back so quick.

          • The easier way is to reduce your withholding so that you don’t end up giving them so much money that you get a lot back. Talk to a good accountant.

          • Yeah, except that my wife got a job in a different country and we ended up renting our house out which has all sorts of tax implications. We could have not have foreseen the change in our tax situation.

          • anon, pvr notwithstanding, the people getting refunds here are generally doing so on purpose as a way to “save”. Figured that out pretty quick when I made a similar suggestion early this year. You’d think people who need that money would be the first people to file, but it’s not the case here.

  • That One Guy

    Rant: I feel like Cookie Monster from the Apple commercial.
    Rave: I’m eating more healthfully this week, and getting to bed earlier.

  • Just wanted to thank everyone again for their suggestions on moving companies. Because of the short notice (I’m trying to get everything out Sunday), District Relocators were the only ones who were available. However, I may use another company suggested here for my fiance and when she’s ready to move her stuff.

  • Rant: Can’t afford to live in the city I was born and raised in. I love DC and my neighborhood and would love to get an apartment near it as I’m close to family, but if I were to stay I would have to pay upwards to 50-70% of my monthly income on rent even with a roommate. For the young 20-something who live here: do your parents help out with rent or do you have like 10 roommates? I ask this genuinely as I see so many people who look my age moving to my neighborhood. After college, I worked abroad for a few years and had no problems living independently, but there’s no way I could afford my neighborhood without living with my parents.

    Anyone know of affordable areas for 20-somethings without using most of your income on rent?

    • A lot of 20-somethings have pretty high starting salaries in DC if they go the consulting route (which many of my friends did right after college). Other friends have at least two roommates. My then-boyfriend and I lived together which was a huge savings.

    • Which neighborhood are you in, and which neighborhood did you grow up in?

    • When I first moved to DC after college, I was living in a 1-bedroom with a roommate, dorm style. If that’s any consolation. I think the short answer is that it’s pretty impossible to live here on a non-consultant starting salary without sharing a bedroom with someone.

      • … and to actually answer your question, that was in Glover Park. Look in the neighborhoods that are not near metro stations.

      • I wouldn’t go that far. A GS-7 could probably afford to not share a bedroom with someone. I have a couple friends at non-profits who made less than a GS-7 and didn’t share bedrooms (but definitely were in group housing).

        • I agree about the GS-7 but I was assuming OP was below that level based on “50-70% of my monthly income on rent even with a roommate.” But that was just my assumption.

        • anonymouse_dianne

          Well I’m a GS-12 and live alone and most if not all of my first paycheck a month goes to my mortgage. That’s just living in DC..

    • Early 30 something here, I live with two roomates. Most of my younger friends do the same. I have at least one friend who is subsidized by parents, and a few others who’s salary support them enough to live on their own.

    • HaileUnlikely

      Most of my friends work for non-profit or religiously-affiliated organizations and are in their late 20’s to mid 30’s but don’t make a lot of money (I don’t know their exact salaries but I’m pretty sure the majority of them make well under $50K/year). Most of them live in older, unrenovated, significantly less expensive group houses in Mt. Pleasant and Columbia Heights which they found not through ads but through personal connections, and pay in the $750 – $900 range for their rent for use of a bedroom and access to common areas. I’m not sure how people find these places, but they do exist (I found one in the Washington City Paper but that was in 2004 and it’s different now).

      • hammers

        they find them on craigslist usually!

      • Craigslist dumb luck. Found a gd on a 2bd/1 bath in January. Not fancy but it’s spacious, has washer/dryer, and it’s cheap by dc standards.
        It all depends on what you can tolerate, but deals exist.
        Cohi, mp seems to be the haven for younger group houses.

    • when I was in my 20’s (mid-90’s) and fresh out of college, with the low salary I was earning, group homes were the only option if I wanted to live in the city. Roommates were just what everyone did until they progressed in their career to afford their own apartment. I had terrible roommates but at the same time I met some great people I still keep in touch with. Of course some people had well to do parents that helped them get their own place but I didn’t have that luxury so I just dealt with it.

    • I started in McLean paying $588 a month and living with 2 roomies. Then I moved to Falls Church and had one roomie and then to Arlington in two different apartments for 4 years with roomies before finally moving to DC. Those years living in Virginia and having roomies allowed me to save a lot of money. I still think there are some affordable places in SW, MtP, etc, but you have to be open to living in either a really small place, basement apartment, or having a roomie.

    • It’s either a group house, or if you can swing it, move back in with the folks if they are in the area. Do that for a few years, save some money and if you can, get a condo or some piece of real estate that you can afford. You’re young, you have time on your hands.

    • hammers

      I moved here right after college and was able to find a den in a 2br + den (so 3 br) for ~600. I took a second job working a few hours in retail per week for about 400 a month, and progressed at my day job and began to make more money. I read tons of personal finance blogs, and threw every spare dollar at my student loans. I didn’t really go out or spend much money, and after a couple years cooking in, no vacations, etc. I was able to pay off my loans. I’ve never had parental help, but without loans to pay, and a comfortable salary, I was finally ready to move out on my own. To save money, I’ve never had a car (so no car payments, insurance, gas, repairs etc). I’ve switched to crappy phone service to save 60 a month, use netflix instead of cable. I’ve stopped going to the movies. I buy thrift clothes. If I go out, I try to set a limit for myself, or stick to specials. I have to really try to overcome my spending vices, but I’m always surprised by what I can live without. Fifty percent of monthly income towards housing isn’t very atypical for this city, unfortunately. You also may need to find a way to make more money. Either find a new job, or take a side gig. You don’t mention your neighborhood, but keep in mind that you never know the financial situation of people you see. Some people have help, some people are swimming in debt. You never really know.

      • Exactly. True 35 years ago, true today.

      • This is all really great advice. Though I will note that some of my private student loans actually have penalties for paying them off early, so just do your research on that one. Cooking in and not eating out, not having cable, not going to movies, etc. is all great advice.

    • a) I lived in crappy apartments/group houses with multiple people. I lived this way in Mt. Pleasant, Adams Morgan, Brookland, H St., Takoma DC.
      b) I had two jobs.

      • +1 except I was in Foggy Bottom, U St., and Columbia Heights. and I oscillated between having 1 jobs and 2 jobs.
        also I don’t see the harm in shacking up with your parents for a little while, if you get along with them and they are willing to have you. put some money away while you look closely at your options.

  • Rant: How freaking difficult is it for Uber/Lyft drivers to find my address when I type it in AND it shows my location on the pin? If you look outside and you see you’re in a parking lot, that clearly is not the front of my residence!!!

    Rave: My podiatrist was cool about me being late because of the lost driver this morning, and we figured out my issue.

    Rant: It’s a “very impressive” bone spur, caused by very little range of motion in my toe. It’s a part of me now. I need to get different shoes than the ones on my feet because they cut right into where it is (I thought wearing flats would help, but she said it doesn’t matter what shoes I wear as long as they go over and not directly on top of the bone spur). Which means these shoes I’m wearing have to go.

    Rave: So I get to buy new, comfy shoes on my lunch hour. I will see what the Walking Company has, in Georgetown.

    Rave: Long awaited catch up with friends after work!

  • PSA – The Washington Humane Society/Washington Animal Rescue League are offering 50% adoption fees this weekend. Their shelters are full to capacity with dogs and cats of all ages looking for homes If you’ve been thinking of adopting or fostering a shelter animal, now is the time to do it!
    Rant – Got stuck on the red line this morning
    Rave – Treated myself to a cinnamon scone from Greenberry’s when I finally made it to work.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: back at work and not very excited about it.
    Rave: awful officemate is moving to a new position.

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