Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user Christopher Schmidt

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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169 Comment

  • Pondering on sharing this morning. What is it that makes a person a sharer? How come people with similar backgrounds approach it so differently? Why does one person insist that you have a bite of her amazing dish, and another person hunch over the plate as if she’d just done 10 years in prison? And books! Why do some people get their joy from passing books along, and other people from collecting them?
    I can’t really put together a set of traits that are common to sharers. And it’s going to bug me til I figure it out.

    • I Dont Get It

      I know but I’m not going to tell you.

    • I like to share, but don’t like being forced to share if that makes sense. I’ll offer up food on my plate, but don’t like being asked.

    • The larger question eludes me, but I reread books that I like. Back in the pre-kindle days, I was always reluctant to lend books. Many people don’t view a “lent” book as something to return, but to pass on – probably because they don’t reread them. I always felt awkward asking for a book – even a crappy sci-fi paperback, to be returned, so I ended up not offering to lend anything. Probably not the right approach. With the advent of e-readers, the quandary has all but been eliminated.

      • Or you’d get the book back with the spine damaged, the corners of the pages folded over (the worst), and coffee stains the cover. That’s why I hated sharing my books with other people.

      • I used to hate lending books as well, because I never got them back. So I couldn’t reread them, nor lend them to anyone else who might also want to read them. Worse yet, my bookshelves were left with just the crap that I wouldn’t recommend, nor anyone wanted. I always found it interesting to see what people had on their bookshelves, especially when you first meet them, and I didn’t feel my bookshelves represented me very well.

        But as you say, e-readers changed all that.

    • I’m all for sharing books, clothes, etc. with friends but I absolutely hate sharing food. I generally have no interest in other people’s food and usually can only eat mine anyway due to food allergies. I was considering putting a sign with the “Joey doesn’t share food!” meme from Friends on my food cabinet in my shared kitchen.

      • Yes! that’s one of my favorite episodes! I detest when people try to take food off my plate without asking!

    • That One Guy

      Maybe cultural backgrounds play into whether food sharing is a thing or not. Like people who grow up in home where food is a more communal undertaking versus an individualized experience.

      • Agreed. In my family, sharing your food is expected. I was always amazed when I would go out to eat with a friend’s family and no one ate off each other’s plate. Similarly I was raised to be very generous with food. If I cook or bake something for a party and there are leftovers, I will pretty much refuse to take them home. I have friends who have no qualms asking to take their leftovers back.

        Regarding book sharing, I “lend” books but never expect to get them back or ask for them back. I like books to get passed down. If I really love a book and want to re-read it, I would just buy it again. I guess that’s why I’m pro Kindle.

    • The “sharer” just wants to get rid of all the excess junk in her house 😉

    • Many aspects of personality are coded in our genes.

    • I think a lot of people over-share. If something is really amazing or unique, I’ll offer it up. But I don’t need to try everything on your plate to validate your own over-exuberance. However, I do love sharing food. I’ll often try to get tablemates in on a plan ahead of time. “We’re both interested in the sea bass and the penne? You want to each get one and share them…?! Is anyone interested in starting with the nachos if I get it for the table…?” Other than that, I’m fine with sharing if someone asks, but wouldn’t necessarily offer unless it is something truly remarkable. I think also being an introvert or extrovert affects that. Are you compelled to share experiences with others, or do you experience things more personally?

  • Rant: our contractor is inept, so our renovation is now in it’s 12th month.
    Rave: I am finally getting rift and quarter-sawn floors (a dream of mine since I was a kid, kinda)… installed next week.

      • This is one grammar/word choice issue I can never keep straight in my brain. Anyone have any tips for remembering whether to use “its” or “it’s”?

        • It’s is a contraction only for places where you would use “it is”. So just substitute that in and if it doesn’t make any sense, you want its.

        • because “it’s” is simply a contraction of “it is,” try repeating the sentence without the contraction and see if it makes sense. i use that when proofing my writing, and it helps find instances of misuse.

        • Fair point–but theoretically, possessives also use an apostrophe, so I forget which case gets the usual apostrophe and which doesn’t.

          • It’s and who’s are the exceptions to the apostrophe possessive rule. (Its and whose)

            I have so much sympathy for anyone learning English grammar. There are as many exceptions as rules.

          • Trying to remember that “who’s” is the same way might help. Thanks!

        • I Dont Get It

          I know but I’m not going to tell you. Oh wait, wrong thread.

        • No apostrophes in “his” or “her” or “its”. That’s one way to remember it.
          Another way is to remember that the apostrophe means there’s something missing (i.e. a space and the letter “i”.
          “it’s” = “it is”.

        • HaileUnlikely

          Possessives like “his” and “hers” don’t have apostrophes. Neither does “its.”

        • This is also my biggest grammar issue. I’m glad you raised it so I can read the advice!

          • My pleasure! The associated possessives without apostrophes (his/her/whose) might be the key for me.

        • Poseessives of pronouns don’t have apostrophes (my/mine, your/yours, his/his, her/hers,

        • Possessives of _pronouns_ don’t have apostrophes (my/mine, your/yours, his/his, her/hers, its, our/ours, your/yours, their/theirs).
          Possessives of words _other_ than pronouns do have apostrophes: the prince’s blog, the troll’s post, Dan’s opinion.
          It doesn’t help that (at least in my experience) autocorrect programs often routinely autocorrect “its” to “it’s,” “were” to “we’re,” etc. Maddening.

      • When I am writing and am not sure if I am using a word right, it is very easy to google up a grammar page that has the answer. I do this all the time – it is much easier than pre-internet, when you had to consult a style manual, as in, a book. (I realize many readers here have never written anything pre-internet.) Often the explanation is good, so that I learn a new rule. The learning doesn’t seem to stick as well these days though as the rules I learned as a kid (such as the difference between its and it’s – that one stuck from childhood.)
        The one I look up frequently is which vs. that. And, as with many grammar rules, I’m not certain whether my confusion is because I don’t know the correct usage, or if is is because usage rules have changed since I first learned them many decades ago. I try to keep up with new rules, unless the sentence meaning is unclear with the new rules (which I often find to be the case – in general, not talking about which and that here), in which case I use the old rule for clarity of meaning. But some of the new rules seem so inelegant to me.

        • UK English doesn’t observe the “which” vs. “that” distinction, and there’s even some disagreement among American magazines, etc. about it. So — unfortunately — a lot of what you read will contradict the actual rule.

  • Rant: My landlord said she’s thinking about maybe putting the house on the market sometime in the next year. I love (and I mean LOVE) my little basement apartment, but the ridiculously cheap rent is really what sold me. I’m not really in a financial place to buy an apartment of my own and I don’t want to go back to having roommates. Super bummed about this =(
    Rave: Gonna brave the rain during lunch and head to District Doughnut for a pick me up.

    • Well – IF it goes on the market, a big selling point to many buyers is having a rentable basement apartment (that can pay a good chunk of a mortgage and allows them to buy more than they could otherwise afford). If you express a willingness to stay and your landlord recommends you to whoever bought it – they may just transfer your lease over. If the buyers have not dealt with managing an apartment before, it’s a lot easier to take an easy situation than dealing with finding new renters/the unknown. Of course there’s a lot of factors at play, number one being your landlord hasn’t even put it on the market yet…

    • Yes, the new owners MAY be happy to have a tenant in place. But when they see the ridiculously cheap rent you are paying, they may want you gone. They no doubt will want to charge as much as they can to offset their huge new mortgage. Unless you are willing to pay msrket rate, you’d best start thinking about moving.
      If they do want to take possession of the place empty, the fact that you are entitled to 90 days notice if the new owners want to use the basement themselves (in DC anyway) means that your current landlord may be motivated to pay you a sizeable amount to waive your rights, which could help with moving costs.

      • Obviously depends on the situation (and how ridiculous the rent actually is). If the buyers absolutely maxed out their budget and are desperate for cash, not a great thing. If they didn’t, they may be happy with a good tenant in place – and maybe they raise it a bit, but not squeezing out as much as they can. The other thing is – with moving into a place, they may not be in a rush to kick out a tenant and find someone (along with take care of getting it ready for a new tenant) while they are moving in themselves. Moving into a new house + becoming a landlord is not a fun combo.
        At least worth the effort! But maybe it also won’t go on the market (and if someone is wishy washy on selling their place – they may have a very high price in mind that they may not get).

        • My recollection of the basement issue:
          If the new owners take possession of the house and do not claim the basement for themselves (i.e., they allow you to remain as a tenant), they won’t be able to raise the rent until 12 months from the last rent increase. The original lease remains fully valid. You don’t need to resign a new lease with the new landlord. And even if they do raise the rent, it cannot be above and beyond market rates for a similar apartment. You can protest the rate increase with RACD if it’s above and beyond apartments in similar condition. Furthermore, they can’t raise the rent if the home is not in “substantial compliance with housing regulations.” Many older basements are in bad shape, so they’d need to ensure they are up to code before raising the rent on you. That could be a very expensive proposition.
          If the new owners claim the basement for themselves, they are not allowed to re-rent the basement for 12 months. You’re owed damages if they put it back on the rental market earlier than 12 months.

          • Yes, but it can be difficult to collect on that. My old landlord lied and said he wanted his condo I was renting back to live in (which he had lived in previously) – but I knew he was lying, as he was trying to sell it to various of my neighbors in the building, which they told me. Since he wouldn’t take the prices offered and wanted too much, he resented it a month after I move out. I can take him to small claims court, I found out, if I claim up to $5,000 (or something like that) in damages (it cost me almost that much to move – between movers and packers and cleaners – but the incredible time it took me to find a new place and move and outfit a new place when stuff didn’t fit – curtains, closet storage units, kitchen storage items, etc. – should also be compensated, since he lied in violation of the law.) But will I be blacklisted from renting again in DC if I do? And, even if I get an order that he owes me, how easy will it be to collect from a non-district resident – unless I can somehow let a lien on the condo (which I don’t know if is possible) and collect if and when he ever sells?
            I wish DC had a triple damages unfair and deceptive practices act (nothing I have googled has told me it does). When I lived in another state, and a friend had the house she rented part of sold, and the new owner claimed the old owner didn’t pass on the security deposit to him, she got triple the amount of her security deposit back from the old owner. Now that puts some teeth into a law.

          • Thank you!!! That is SUPER helpful information. My rent has never actually increased- it was initially discussed when I gave my security deposit, but hasn’t been brought up since. I This makes me cautiously optimistic that if I do find myself looking for a new place to live I won’t be totally screwed financially in the process.
            I’d obviously do my best to work with any potential new owners to figure out a solution that works for everyone. I don’t want to end up the subject of a “Dear PoPville” post sometime in the next year =)

        • I pay $800/month (utilities included, shared laundry) for probably a little over 575 square feet. It’s less than a 10 minute walk to the Van Ness Metro. I’ve lived there for about 2 1/2 years, so if my landlord does decide to sell I’m hoping being a long term tenant will work in my favor. I don’t have a formal written lease (illegal rental, it’s more of an in-law suite with a full kitchen and bath) so I’m nervous that would obviously negate any tenant laws in place.
          I’ve talked to some friends and family about it the last 24 hours and they all agree that having a existing tenant could swing a buyer either way. Here’s to hoping my landlord decides to keep the place for a little longer!

          • All tenant laws remain in place and apply to you, even in an illegal rental. Frankly, your landlord won’t even be able to sell the house with you in there since it’s not up to code. Your landlord is foolish. The only way you’re leaving is if you decide to do so voluntarily. You can either leave for free or ask for a payout in order to leave early.

          • Which I would hope you’d leave for free. I’m pretty sure you knew you would be renting an illegal space and getting below market rate for the unit. It worked for you and the owner equally and when that time ends- you should play fair.

          • Can’t say I agree with that. Worked for the owner to not have to bring the place up to code and rent it as a legal unit – saved them a bunch, too. Now they move out with a profit from selling, and the tenant has the expense of moving with nothing? Not the way the law is in DC, anyway – tenants have rights here, which rights have monetary value in this economy, however hard they may be to enforce.

          • I can promise you the owner is not paying taxes on the basement rental income of an illegal unit. So there’s that benefit, too. If you’re moving out, I’d ask for $3K + your deposit to cover moving expenses and hassle of finding a new place.
            In an illegal basement unit? You can easily delay closing the sale by at least 12 months. Plus, the owner will get fined by the city. It’s cheaper to pay you off.

  • Revel: I am in Ecuador
    Rant : my luggage is not
    Revel: shopping spree on Deltas dime

  • 5th and Catsworth

    Rant: Rainy day commuting.
    Rave: Don’t have to water my garden tonight!
    Rave: Helped cover a coworker’s office with photos of LeBron – cannot wait to see his face. Office pranks are the best.

  • Rant: Baby woke up early and tired again this morning.
    Rave: I *might* have figured out how to get him back to sleep again–will implement new idea tomorrow morning.
    Rave: Put him back to sleep after an hour and though I had to wake him up an hour later, he was much more chipper and actually ate his breakfast for the first time in several days!
    Rave/Rant: mtpkiddo slept hard last night & I had to wake her up at 8. She did NOT want to get out of bed. (Can’t this happen on a weekend instead???)
    Rave: Got to bed a bit early and so got a bit more consecutive sleep. Will try again tonight….
    Rave: Leaving late this morning on account of kids’ sleep shenanigans meant that we missed walking in the pouring rain 🙂

    • Baby Artie has decided that his new wake up time is 5:30 am, which sadly means that I am then oversleeping when my alarm goes off at 6:00am. There has been a lot of hectic scurrying in my house this week to get out the door on time. I feel your pain.

      • Yikes! mtpbaby has been sleeping through from 8ish until 6ish (5:50 this morning). I thought it was a light issue, but now I think it’s a diaper issue. While it sucks to get up so close to when I need to get up, I’ll be really happy if I can get him a bit more nighttime sleep so he’s happier and eats his breakfast–which should help resolve issues relating to suddenly blowing through bottles at daycare. Fingers crossed!

        • I hope the diaper solution helps you get a bit more sleep in the morning!

          • Me too! Though right now, I’d be grateful for him getting a bit more sleep and having a better morning/eating breakfast.

        • We have been dealing with earlier wake ups the past few weeks, and it is definitely a light issue in our case. Hope your diaper theory ends up being right so you have an easier solution!

          • I can’t imagine the light helps (I don’t understand why someone put skylights in bedroom ceilings!!!), but I’ve taped a bag over the skylight to mitigate that issue some as well.

          • We also have black-out curtains in both kids’ rooms, which helps, I think.

  • Rave: This sit-in.
    Rave: Babysitting for my favorite kiddos tonight. I shouldn’t have favorites but I’ve cared for this family for 5+ years and they’ve made me one of their own. I adore them so much!

  • Rave: In awe of Congress right now. I know the sit in will probably not force a vote on the bill. But just the very act of protest warms my heart. And lead by John Lewis. Not to mention yesterday was a watershed moment for technology in protest. The use of Facebook Live and Periscope to show the live feed is unprecedented. This is one of the reasons social media excites me. The impact and reach.

    Rave: My brother and sister in law are in town on Saturday. I want to take them out to see “real” DC in the evening. Thinking about bar hopping in Bloomingdale. I want to do something chill, yet fun.

    Rant: My neck still hurts. I need a massage and to start doing my PT exercises again.

    • So the sit in does nothing and we are suppose to be greatful? I think your rave is more of a rant. but that’s just me.

      • no. It’s a rave. Its civil disobdience. Its not taking shit lying down. At least they are making an effort. Sorry you don’t see it that way. But it harkens back to the civil rights movement to me.

        • So why didn’t they do something after Sandy Hook? Didn’t want to spend the political capital even though they had the numbers, but now that they don’t have the numbers, it’s easy to posture.

          • At least they are doing it now. I don’t think anyone would imagine we would have the multitude of mass shootings we’ve had since Sandy Hook. Better now than never.

          • right but its just politics its not actual reform. I guess I missed the part with the proposed legislation? I would be interested to read that.

          • Sandy Hook was about as bad as you can get. I don’t think it’s really a “shock” we’ve had them since.
            However, Sandy Hook was a bit trickier in terms of the killer. He took guns from his own home. The Orlando situation deals with two things that involve a bill: terrorists watch list and overall background checks (and you don’t even see a whole lot about assault weapons ban).

        • It is almost literally “taking shit lying down.” (Or sitting down, to be more precise.) Congress needs to compromise instead of trying to jam one side’s agenda down the other side’s throat and pitching a fit when no one swallows. They’re all disgraceful and very bad at the jobs they were elected to do.

          • It seems the Republicans are never going to compromise I’d rather the Dems disrupt and stuff their opinions down peoples throats than doing nothing at all.

    • I’m very much in favor of gun control, but I wonder how all the sit-in lovers would react if the Dems were in control of Congress and the Republicans shut down the House to force a vote on abortion restrictions. How would that be different, other than that we agree with the first policy and not the second?

      • But the republicans have been doing it for the entire Obama administration. Maybe not as dramatic as a physical sit-in (which only works because John Lewis is there), but they have filibustered repeatedly, blocked a historic number of appointments, and wasted a truly staggering amount of time and resources on continuing to fight the lost ACA fight.
        Also, yes, it is different because I agree with one and not the other. Basically, I want to control my body. Getting shot would violate my body, possibly even more egregiously than being forced to complete a pregnancy I don’t want.

        • +10000

        • Call me unconvinced. Your first paragraph is all true, but those are examples of the Republicans abusing the rules to their advantage, not ignoring the rules. As to your second point, your actual chances of being shot, even in this country, are pretty slim. The real issue is that both examples involve preventing the Congress from operating in the name of promoting legislation that limits a constitutional right. Mark my words, when the Dems take control, the Republicans will pull this same stunt and point to yesterday as the precedent, and rightly so.

          • I take issue with “limits a constitutional right.” First of all, why is it that only the second amendment is limitless? Even the first amendment has limits. You can’t yell “fire” in a crowded space. So why is it that everyone cries “you can’t limit the second amendment” when Constitutional provisions are questioned and challenged (and maybe limited) all the time. That’s why we have a Supreme Court, to interpret the Constitution (as well as decide splits in the Circuits which it tends to do more effectively when it has a full bench). Secondly, the second amendment is not as clear cut as everyone who advocates for it says it is. That pesky “A well regulated militia” qualifier. Why is that never ever read when one focuses on the “shall not be infringed” part. It needs to be read in its (not it’s!!!) entirety. Third, I am pretty sure the original drafters of the Constitution didn’t not envision everyone and their brother owning an assault rifle.

          • You Anon, have a point – considering that the Supreme Court recently did away with the Fourth Amendment ENTIRELY – that’s the one that prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures without an oath and warrant (known as ‘without probable cause’ to modern folk). Google ‘Supreme Court guts fourth amendment.’ It is shocking. Read Sotomayor’s dissent (joined by the other two women on the court.) The police can now search you or your home or car anytime with no reason whatsoever now.
            Maybe DC residents are complacent to this, as they were doing it in the Trinidad neighborhood (as well as and in various neighborhoods in NYC) a few years ago. Let’s hope the states step up and find this violates STATE constitutions (not that DC residents have one.)
            We truly have no constitution anymore. Though that was clear to me after the supremes took it upon themselves to decide Bush v. Gore, which they had no legal right to do by any form of legal analysis – it was simply based on expedience, as in, we don’t want to wait for the state to do what it is doing as set forth in the constitution because we want our guy to win – which was not legal by any stretch of the imagination, as made clear in Justice Ginsburg’s dissent.

          • @Anon: All constitutional rights have limits. The question is, what are the limits of the limits (that’s awkward, but you get what I mean). It isn’t a question of whether we can restrict gun ownership, it’s a question of what limit we can get passed (and accepted by the Supreme Court). In the first instance, that’s a political, not a constitutional question. And now that I think about it, the Supreme Court component is a political question, too, because it’s only by winning elections and getting good justices appointed that this issue will progress.
            As for your well regulated militia point, I agree with you, but it’s a dead issue, at least for the time being. The Supreme Court has looked at it, and doesn’t care a fig. It’s unfortunate, but at least for now we need to let that argument go. (Although that particular decision does clearly demonstrate Justice Jackson’s most famous saying, “”We are not final because we are infallible, but we are infallible only because we are final.”)

          • Anon 1:38: I never said that the second amendment is limitless. I believe the contrary. If you actually read this whole thread, you would see that I began by stating that I very much favor gun control. So, your long rant missed my point by a mile, which is simply that the gun control and abortion examples are parallel.

        • You are correct in saying the Republicans have done everything they can to thwart the Obama administration, but they have done so following the rules of the Senate and House after being elected through the Democratic process by voter with whom you might disagree (or is it that they disagree with you?). In any case, this sit-in is not democracy.

    • (Agree re: your first rave!)
      Bloomingdale: I would start the night upstairs at Crisp with their dope HH and some fried chicken. Then I would have some drinks on patio of Boundary Stone, maybe hit up Showtime for a shot/beer combo and end the night at Pub&The People and/or Wicked Bloom. Not sure if you were soliciting suggestions but there you go lol

      • Oh! Good point with Crisp! My Sis in Laws family lives in Nashville, I’d love to get her opinion on hot chicken DC style. Plus yes on the happy hour. Pub & The People has been on my list for a bit, it would be a great chance to check it out.

    • @SKJ84 – I’m with you! I went down to the rally outside the Capitol last night, and the activists calling for action shared their stories, and occasionally House members came out to show us support and vow to keep up the fight. I believe civil disobedience is called for when there is a wrong being done that cannot be effectively righted by following someone else’s rules. This is exactly that type of instance. I’m so grateful for John Lewis, the progressive wing of the Democratic party, and the young members who figured out how to harness social media to bring this fight directly to the public. I hope this type of activity continues until there is a bill that passes. We need this.

      • I seriously debated going down myself. A lot of my friends did and I’m so proud of them. Some continued protesting today.

  • Rant: Extreme fatigue hasn’t abated yet! Seriously could sleep 12 hours a day.
    Rant: I’m starting to show in the “looks like she put on a few pounds” way. Between that and the hormonal acne I’m getting, I don’t feel very attractive. Thinking about getting my hair cut or a facial or something.
    Rave: Back to working out 4-5 days a week. Picturing little F bouncing around in there to the music and movement 😀
    Rave: Already had a morning nap during acupuncture.

    • While I totally get the impulse, I must advise against doing anything drastic with your hair right now. And the facial, really. What with hormonal changes and emotional weirdness, this is not a good time to experiment.

      • Ha. That’s a good point. I’m more overdue for a haircut than anything–I haven’t cut it since October and given the weather and long hair it’s tough to take care of. I’ll probably waffle on it some more.

  • Rant: I don’t mind rainy days, I just wish I didn’t have to work(/leave my couch) on rainy days
    Rave-ish: upcoming birthday, I guess. At least it means cake! Any suggestions for a brunch location that could handle around 10, some where in Navy Yard/Eastern Market/H St? Or any other ideas for a relatively low-key bday celebration?

    • I would suggest Ted’s Bulletin but let’s face it – they are ALWAYS packed! As for low key, I’m having friends over for games, Sangria and b-day cake…if you’re a games kind of person.

    • Andie302

      Ambar – try to get on the upstairs back patio if it’s a nice day! Great food, great service, and bottomless brunch. Be careful and happy early birthday!

    • Second Ambar. They are really accommodating. I’ve hosted two events there and they go out of their way to assist. Cava apparently has a great brunch, but may be too hard to get in with a large group. Medium Rare does prefix brunch and I’ve heard Hawk and Dove has good specials as well.

    • I so agree with your rant

    • I like brunch at Lavagna on 8th St, but admittedly have not been in awhile. I’ve held quite a few dinner events there.

  • Rave: I may have finally found a recipe I had been looking for about 6 years! It was the most amazing hybrid of baked oatmeal and coffee cake served at this beautiful B&B in PA. I can’t wait to try it!
    Rant: I can’t seem to sleep more than 3 hours consecutively. It’s a little annoying.
    Rave: Our Independence Day plans involve a boat. I’m a very happy lady.

    • This sounds so amazing! Recipe please???

      • I don’t think it will allow me to link but look up “Apple Oatmeal Coffee Cake at The Inn and Spa at Intercourse Village.” I found the recipe on a bed and breakfast website. It’s funny that after all these years and all the breakfast courses we ate there, I can still remember how absolutely delicious this dish was. They served it with some fresh warm cream on the side and it was ridiculously good. It was my absolute favorite of everything we tried there.

        • I understand those lingering food memories. I best chocolate mousse I ever had was over fifteen years ago at this restaurant in Brugge. I still dream of it and am always vaguely disappointed when ever I order chocolate mousse at a restaurant.

        • Intercourse Village? Really? That’s fantastic.

          • That part of PA has the best town names – Intercourse and Blue Ball are near each other.

          • It’s an Amish village and it’s adorable! I loved waking up to the sound of horses clomping. And yes, there is an entire line of awesomely named towns there. There’s also Virginville and Bird-In-Hand.

  • Rant: I am really struggling to focus at work today.
    Rave: Coffee. Give me all the coffee.
    Rave: I managed to do daycare drop off and make it to work without getting soaked. Wellies and a giant umbrella helped.
    Rant: Wearing the baby and Wellies and carrying a giant umbrella in a summer downpour made for a very sweaty commute.

  • Rant: This humidity. I can’t breathe!
    Rave: Decided to take an impromptu long weekend before the Fourth to visit with family up in NY and New England.
    Rant: Found out that if I want to keep seeing my therapist beyond the EAP-approved 6 visits, it’s a $40 copay. I know many other pay more, but still, ouch! That’s the same copay as my specialists I see 2x year!
    Rant: Bug invasion in my apartment building? Keep finding lots of millipedes. My kitties think they’re fun. I, however, do not. Ick. Need to get an exterminator in there asap.
    Rave: Fun HH with some neighborhood friends last night

    • Do your kitties eat/kill them, or just play with them?

      • No, the little bastards think they’re toys and just sort of sniff them and bat them around! Earn your keep, guys!

    • Millipedes? I didn’t know they were a household pest. I’ve dealt a fair share of bug invasions, but never millipedes.

      • * dealt with

      • Yeah, I’ve never dealt with anything like it, either, but there are a number of apartments on my floor that are having issues. They’re not poisonous or anything, they don’t go after human food, and they die pretty fast, but still, ick! My theory is that there is some sort of water retention/drainage issue in the courtyard that’s driving them inside, but I have no idea. I just want them gone.

    • The insurance considers psychiatric care to be specialist… everything aside from primary care is considered specialty care. It sucks, but at least it’s covered? Trying to be glass half full!

      • Yeah. It’s just kind of a bummer how little and “non-essential” our society seems to consider mental health care.

        • I completely agree! But at least things are starting to shift, all be it slowly.

        • The pharmaceutical companies have too much power – the insurance companies want you to be medicated and not use therapist time at all, as it takes longer and costs more than the one minute it takes to write you a prescription. Sad, but true. Even though even those on medication can often benefit from therapy.

        • You’re paying a specialist price for a specialist….am I missing something? If it was deemed nonessential, wouldn’t they disallow it all together? I guess I’ll hope you have a low deductible so the price can come down sooner than later.

    • Are they definitely millipedes? (Not “house centipedes”?)

      • I don’t know beyond a shadow of a doubt if they are millipedes, but I do know for damn sure they are NOT house centipedes. If they were, I would be halfway to my parents’ house in Philly by now!

  • Quotia Zelda

    Rant: Ordering my cousin’s graduation present has turned into a big stupid mess. And now I have to make phone calls (shudder) to fix problems I didn’t create.

  • Rant: I’m out of marmalade
    Rave: My birthday is today!

  • Rant: My main job for today is to type up the minutes from yesterday’s staff meeting. Least favorite thing EVAR.

    Rant: Decided to wear my Croc flats in the rain today…not the best of ideas! Got very slippery and very squeaky very quickly.

    Rave: Biked to the Capitol last night to hear the Marine band play, and who was in the audience but Prince’s drummer?! And she sat in on “1999”! It was amazing, and I don’t even care for Prince!

    Rave: Got in a run AND a bike ride last night!

  • Rant: Loud ass coworkers. Just shut the hell up already!
    Rave: Telework tomorrow.
    Rant: Dry mouth that came on after I started taking pain medication.
    Rave: Back pain has subsided and I can stop taking pain meds.
    Rant: May have to stop taking antidepressant and anti anxiety medication due to the nausea and lower back pain that came up after I started taking the medication. This sucks cause these new meds were working on my irritation and running thoughts a lot better than previous meds.
    Rant: Need to get rid of current doctor (general practitioner) cause I can never schedule an appointment cause the doctor does double duty as the receptionist and is busy with patients all the time and never answers the phone.

  • Rave: Chopping my hair today! While I love my long hair, it’s (is that right?!) time for a change and a more professional look. I know I’m going to get anxious in the chair but hey, it’s hair and change is good.
    Rave: Officially have acquired a photographer, videographer, and maid of honor! We are thrilled to be working with such a fantastic photographer and the video team that she recommended.
    Rave: MOH is not an outwardly emotional person but got very emotional reading my “proposal” note. Made me happy.

  • Andie302

    Rant: Late for work – alarm was in the other room, so it didn’t even get close to waking me up!
    Rave: Managed to take a work call while I walked to the office under clear skies – what is this rain of which you speak? Apparently I slept through it!
    Rant/rave? Busy day today – it’s my Friday and I’m taking off early to head out to Cambridge to formally present my renovation plan in hopes of obtaining a Certificate of Appropriateness for my project. You cannot make this stuff up!

    • “Certificate of Appropriateness”?! What in the hell? Is your house located in 1922?

    • Good luck on the 2nd point! Is this in the Historical District?

      • Andie302

        Yup – historic district and the board is ridiculous! I had to present informally last month so that I can formally present this month, I had to have drawings and things in a month in advance of the meeting, and I’m 100% sure that they won’t approve everything that I want to do, but I’m hoping they at least give me permission tonight to get started!!!

  • I Dont Get It

    Rant: I’m beginning to think my physical therapist is catching on to a trend that when she asks what I did for the weekend I always say “Nothing.”
    Rant: I’m past due getting a car and picking Lizzy up from the ”spa”. Maybe I should do this over the weekend so I have a story to tell my p/t? It’s almost like the time Lucy the cat died during Thanksgiving dinner so I had her in the car with me at Black Friday sales before dropping her off at the “spa”. I like to think she enjoyed it the trip.
    Rave: Pointing out in a project kickoff meeting that the suggested project name had an unfortunate acronym (I didn’t say it out loud but it was REAM .)
    Rant: Guess I’ll be working on getting REAM implemented over the next six months.

    • Hope you didn’t get REAMed for pointing it out.

    • At my government agency, we have annual RIM training (short for Records and Information Management). And there are some people with the title “RIM Specialist.” It even says that on their business cards, which completely cracks me up, but can’t say anything.

  • Rant – Interviewed for a great job but I never heard back from them. It’s been almost a month. I thought it went really well and I got my hopes and everything. 🙁
    Rave – Retail therapy. New shoes make everything better.

  • I am a little slow to share, because I grew up in a big family where the general understanding of personal space was limited … my things were often ‘borrowed’ by others, only to have the thing disappear or return in terrible condition….

    This even affected food in some way – any treat-type things were bought in limited volumes so you wanted to be sure to get some of it… even if it meant hiding a Twinkie or two for later. (A good hiding place was another thing not to share.) On the other hand, meals were abundant, so I don’t have any problem sharing at a restaurant.

    Now that you have me thinking about it, it’s a jumble of influences, for sure.

    • Shoot – that was supposed to go into the sharing thread

    • Ha! Sounds similar, I also grew up in a large family and I waver between being very generous and very stingy with my sharing.

    • Heh, this is true for me too. Competition was fierce between me and my siblings for everything. I’m weird about sharing my possessions – my books, shoes, clothes, etc. But I have no problem sharing meals.

    • I also came from a large family, and a twin to boot. I had to share everything with my sister. I think that’s one of the reasons I’m pretty protective of my stuff.

    • I grew up in a large family, where stuff was not for sharing (clothing, toys, other stuff), while bikes and board games were communal. Because I was one of the neglected younger ones, I resented the lack of resources. So I grew up a sharer. I will lend books, my bike, my car, tools, clothing, almost anything to friends – but they need to return stuff in good shape (though I don’t really care about paperbacks) or I don’t loan to them again. Lending my bike to a friend who was a bike messenger years ago when I lived in NYC was truly as mistake.

  • Rant: Son’s home purchase has turned into a shitshow that could probably be resolved if I pout my name on the mortgage application, which I will not do. Apparently, “pre-qualified” doesn’t necessarily mean pre-qualified. In the meantime, I’m having a hard time keeping away from the huge pile of cash sitting in my checking account waiting for the the closing (or not). A weekend in New York looks pretty tempting!
    Rave: Son is now formally engaged to a lovely girl who will have and hold him despite his (largely technical but grossly ill-timed) hassles with the IRS.
    Rant: Got all the way to crew practice at 5:10 am only to be sent home due to the potential for lightning storms this morning.
    Rave: Girlfriend was extremely happy to see me come back home.

    • What do you mean “pre-qualified” doesn’t necessarily mean pre-qualified? I’ve always been told that’s exactly what it means. Unless of course you go out and make a big purchase, take on more debt, etc before closing.

      • Maybe qualified v approved?

      • HaileUnlikely

        It basically means “qualified contingent upon a bunch of yet-unverified assumptions that we will verify prior to underwriting.”
        Do mortgage lenders do pre-approvals? I thought that game ended during the foreclosure crisis and that pre-qualified was all one could hope for these days.
        I found out while under contract to buy what is now my home that I had just become a victim of identity theft. It helped me immensely that the feds had already busted the thief and that it was actually the U.S. Secret Service, not the lender, that discovered the theft, but yeah, explaining about a dozen addresses and credit accounts that weren’t mine but appeared on my credit report was all kinds of fun.

        • I’ve done preapproval as recently as last year. Maybe it varies lender to lender. I got po dunk lender to give me the qualification letter while I waited to verify everything. It’s going to Karen anyway might as well get it out of the way.

          • Karen= happen

          • Call it what you will, pre-approval or pre-qualification, it has never meant anything real. Everything has always had to be in order – including a lot of stuff that isn’t checked for “pre” letters – in order to close on a mortgage.

          • HaileUnlikely

            There was a time not that long ago when the universe of “everything” that had to be in order in order to close on a mortgage was quite a bit smaller and the standard of documentation for those things was much flimsier. Recall “NINA” (no income, no assets) loans.

          • Haile – true, but do you really want to go back to those days and the financial crisis that caused? Not that it matters – so little has been fixed that another crisis will happen anyway.

          • That wasn’t my experience. The only thing I had to send in to close was a more recent bank statement and pay stub because everything else was verified in the pre stages. I’m imagine it’s a more tedious process to avoid a big waste of time on someone who’s flimsy and unable to close.
            Standard of documentation;’in many cases there weren’t any docs. Crazy times in the 2000s.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Of course not. My point was just that pre-approval and pre-qualification are vastly different things. Pre-approval basically guarantees that you’ll get your loan (conditional upon appraisal of property, but otherwise, bank asserts that they will lend to you). Pre-qualification doesn’t mean sh!t. Pre-approval used to be as easy to get as pre-qualification is now, back when the game was altogether different. Because of this, people get confused and think that pre-qualification is the same thing as pre-approval and that the industry just changed what they call it, but that is not the case. 10 years ago, it was trivial to get a pre-approval letter and it was almost as trivial to get a mortgage. Today, most lenders don’t do pre-approval any more, and it’s a lot harder to get a mortgage. (I didn’t think any did pre-approvals, but Spock says otherwise and I have no basis to argue with her about that)

  • Rave: got a Fitbit and I’m loving smack talking with my friends and coworkers about who’s going to get more steps.
    Rant: my supervisory role is more like middle school English teacher than anything else. I would make a terrible teacher, which I already knew, yet here I am.
    Rant: my watermelon cubes went bad 🙁

    • Oh yay! Which Fitbit did you get?

      • The Charge HR.
        I wish it came in more neutral colors. I got the blue because it was the most understated, but I’m not in love with the color.
        Also, I’m supposed to wear it to sleep but it’s super bright! I was so confused at 4:45 when I woke up to some bright flashing light, not realizing it was the HR probes. Maybe I need to tighten it at night.

        • huh! I guess I don’t sleep with my hands anywhere near my face, because I’ve never had it bother my sleep. But anyway, enjoy!

  • Rant: I didn’t do a very good job of researching what exactly the kids need for camp next week, and now have to rush out to buy stuff for all of them. I am more than a little surprised to see that I have to get a one-piece bathing suit for my daughter; though I would not send her out of the house in a string bikini, I have always allowed her the autonomy of deciding what swimwear she is comfortable in. She hates one-pieces for very valid reasons, and it sucks that she has to conform at 7 to someone else’s standards.
    Rant: This is what happens when you leave DC. You start talking about gender norms and people look at you like you have three heads.
    Rave: This camp is about half the cost of the same camp in DC. It is still more than twice the cost of the DPR camps my kids usually went to, but they will be doing more, so I guess its a good trade off.

    • I worked at and attended a summer camp for many years in the area. The reason girls were asked to wear one pieces is so that the suite didn’t get in the way of any activities (e.g. falling off when they jump in the pool). I hope this camp has the same reasoning, otherwise its a silly request!

  • Rant: Sometimes being part of an interracial couple, especially one that likes to talk about race and social issues, is hard.
    Rave: Important conversations with people who are important to me.

  • Rant : I want to cry so badly. I’ve been in the mall almost 2 hours and haven’t found any pants that will fit over my big butt.

    • Pants like undies, or pants like trousers? If the latter, look for cute dresses.
      A mall in Quito, hm? Wonder if it’s the same one where I spent two miserable frustrating hours looking for a bathing suit and not finding anything that would accommodate my, um, generous attributes.

      • Both, but trousers in particular. My swimsuit is missing too and I’ll have the same problem

        • I came to the conclusion that Ecuador ladies are not shaped like American ladies of German extraction.

        • I have that problem too. If you’d consider a skinny ankle pant, The Limited has some in their Signature Stretch that work well for me. Be sure to get the high-waisted, and don’t get them in petite even if you are petite (those are cut less generously in the hips and thighs). I’m wearing a pair today and have been thinking about how perfect they are.

  • Revel: Fostering two of the BEST kittens ever. They are actually teenagers, but seriously, for anyone thinking of adopting – you WANT these guys!

    Rant: Visiting sister just called to say she is coming tonight – a day early.

  • Rant: Trying to find a Homestyle (construction loan, better than 203k) general contractor who isn’t a scam artist,
    Revel: A fresh can of Heady Topper. Life is good!

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