Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

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Photo by PoPville flickr user nevermindtheend

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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135 Comment

  • Rant: Totally unhappy with my wardrobe, I am stuck in the age group of not dressing like a 21 year old at a festival and not wanting to look like a matronly person. HOW DO I DRESS MYSELF?

    • Casual wardrobe or work wardrobe? If it’s work how formal is your office?

      • Casual, Work I have down…. Its formal so skirt suits in classic colors is how I roll.

        • I really like these blogs: stylebee.ca
          reading my tea leaves for minimal wardrobe ideas

        • hammers

          what kind of style are you drawn to? What is your desired “look”? I end up wearing jeans with plain colored tanks or tees (or band t-shirts) with a cool jacket because my style is kinda “wanna-be rocker chic”. It’s pretty easy and timeless, and because the style doesn’t really change, Ive found myself investing in better pieces and nicer materials, though I’m usually a little bummed when I hang out with my more stylish of-the-moment friends. I’ll usually cave and buy something trendy at a cheap store like target or marshalls. (No offense, I don’t have the same Zara love as those that post below me). I’m actually the opposite of you- I hate all of my work clothes; they are too fussy or girly or frumpy. I blame having a shape!

    • Andie302

      I’ve found that taking a stylish friend shopping to make suggestions is helpful (or in my case, sending me links to thinks that they think might work well). Also, if getting to a physical store is a challenge, take advantage of free shipping and returns and order a bunch of stuff online knowing full well that you won’t be keeping all of it. There’s also of course things like Stitch Fix or Trunk Club, depending on your price range and willingness to let other people try to dress you!

    • Clueless

      This may sound silly but take a few glances at how the mannequins are styled in the Zara store(s)… can be a good start. I think Zara offers a good variety of items and may offer what you’re currently looking for.

    • Fashion site question – has anyone here ever ordered from Stylewe.com? Their ads are all over my Popville page, and I really like the look of the bags they have (not so interested in the clothes). I checked reviews online, and they are mostly bad – but I wonder if the bags are bad or just the clothes?

    • This is a challenge. I tend to buy mostly simple casual stuff at Loft, Ann Taylor, Lord & Taylor, and Brooks Brothers (Red Fleece line) and then dress it up with interesting jewelry. I also watch Anthropologie for more classic dresses to go on sale and have a bunch of J.Crew and Gap blazers that I throw on with everything.

    • Massimo Dutti, if you can afford it. There’s one in Georgetown, but the prices are significantly more expensive here than in Europe. If you’re in Europe, stock up and get the VAT refund. The quality is much better than comparable JCrew/Banana Republic/Zara lines and the tailoring is more European. Better quality materials, too. Most of the items are made in Portugal and Turkey, rather than Asia – you feel and see the difference in craftsmanship.

  • Rant: watched way too much RNC coverage last night.
    Revel: took a nice break from it by looking for Pokemon with the roommate
    Revel: weather is cooler today so I won’t be holed up in the house all day

  • Rave: A few weeks ago, I decided to commit to taking time for myself and my physical health by taking a lunch break every day and at least walking (I tend to eat at my desk). I have managed to do this every day, and have been slowly building my pace. Yesterday I managed a two mile brisk walk, and getting lunch. I’ve also managed to go for a job at least 3 nights a week. Proud of myself 🙂
    Rave: Littlest Anonachild got a new hair cut this weekend. It’s absolutely adorable and may have been slightly influenced by our recent binge of “Peaky Blinders.” He keeps going around asking everyone to feel the back of his shaved head – it’s adorable.
    Rant: Had some dude make a nasty comment to me as I was leaving the grocery store last night because apparently a polite smile and nod to a completely unsolicited “how you doin’ today honey” is just not good enough. No, I don’t need to be more friendly, and yes, you can go fuck yourself.

  • rant : PT this morning for my primary neck tension and secondary cervicogenic migraines; we did dry needling in my upper traps and around my C1 vertebrae and and the muscles kept jumping and spasming with the movement of the needles in the trigger points. it was pretty painful and i am already very sore.
    .
    rave : i can already feel the muscles loosening and the soreness is only temporary
    .
    revel : SafeTrack surge #4 is OVERRRR!!

    • Oh man – dry needling hurts so badly but in the end, the relief is so worth it. I hope you get the relief soon!

  • Rave: Baby Artie only woke up twice and slept in three+ hour increments last night. This is better than it is been in weeks. I’m hoping this is a trend.
    Rant or Rave? Baby Artie has gained a half pound in a week. This growth spurt may also explain why he’s been awaking every 1-2 hours in the wee hours of the morning to nurse. I am raising a bruiser.
    Rave: The juxaposition of Michelle Obama’s speech and Melania Trump’s plargarized words probably gave me a bit too much joy when I watched it while nursing the baby at two am.

  • Rant: I think it’s the summer, but all of my outdoor time is making me want to move somewhere where I can I can afford a bunch of outdoorsy toys and have a place to store them. I’m looking at listings in Mt Ranier just to day dream.
    Rant: dog sitting is expensive.
    Rave: HH tonight
    Rant: nut milks are sucking all the joy out of drinking coffee. Cashew is better than almond, but it’s still not as good as real milk.

    • are you doing store bought nut milks? i really don’t like them in my coffee. making my own is the way to go for me, and it isn’t too much of a hassle (compared to hating my coffee). it might be worth giving a shot! you can play with the ratio of almonds to water to make it thicker or thinner, add a pitted date for a touch of sweet, add cinnamon and a touch of salt for depth, etc.

    • Nut’s ti nut milk! Once you go black, you never go back.

    • Can you eat butter? Have you tried bulletproof coffee? Also, I don’t know if it has been discusses or if you are allergic or just don’t like it, but coconut milk creamer is my favorite non-dairy substitute in coffee. I loathe soy milk in coffee.

      • Weight watchers is sucking the joy out of my mornings. Nut milks free up a lot of points vs cow’s milk. Butter is way worse.
        I hate all things coconut, but I hear coconut creamer might be a lighter coconut taste. I might try it after I finish this cashew milk.

        • Coconut creamer doesn’t really taste like coconut to me but I still hate it. I much prefer almond milk (although soy is still my favorite dairy-free alternative).

    • We are considering buying cheap and small in DC and then shortly thereafter buying a 2nd home on the Maryland shore (max distance 90 minutes from DC). We’d rather spend $700K on two properties instead of plowing all that money into a single rowhouse.

  • Rave: So thankful for all the rental listing advice and comments yesterday – thank you! I have my work cut out for me but so appreciate the time you all took to review and comment.
    Rant: Back to the weekly Amtrak commute and man is it freezing onboard!
    Rave: Ponies tonight, puppy and cat sitting later this week.
    Rant: Need to have a serious heart to heart with the boss today. Boss has left me in the lurch, multiple times, leaving me to bear the brunt of serious unprofessional behavior without any support.
    Rave: Journaling again, or at least, intending to. Need to get the stuff swirling around in my head down on paper.

  • Pablo Raw

    Ravent: I’m totally confused with the Republican Party’s strategy; looks like they are trying to lose at all cost.
    Rave: I hope they do.

    • Day 1: Suck up to the base. Last night was crazies talking to crazies. They’s try to broaden things going forward.

  • Rave: Slipstream coming to Navy Yard! Shut up and take my money!
    Rant: People behaving obnoxiously on crowded metro trains. Is it so hard to act like a decent human being?

  • Hey Popville: Any suggestions on a great city/town to move to if I start working remotely? It should have a lower cost of living than here, not have extreme cold weather, be diverse, and have plenty to do for fun. I will be renting and am single/no kids. *I just visited Austin and it was great but not diverse.

    • Santa Barbara, CA – cute, lower cost of living, seemed pretty diverse when I was there, great weather….

      • Thanks…the west coast is such a strange/magical place for this east coast girl, lol. Will check it out.

        • Also, WINE – tons and tons of amazing vineyards making delicious wine! If i could just pick up my job and move it out there, I totally would!

          • Ha!! Love Santa Barbara, but as someone who lived there for 4 years, it’s not cheap nor very diverse.

            Cost of living is VERY high. And if you walk down State Street on a Saturday afternoon the only diversity you will find are the colorful personalities of the homeless population.

            Again, not saying SB isn’t lovely, but I find it great for students/retirees and not much in between

          • True, the cost of living in Santa Barbar proper is probably not cheap. But there are many smaller towns right around that seem to offer decent quality of living for decent prices…

        • Perhaps some of the sprawl outside of LA would fit the bill better than Santa Barbara diversity-wise? (I always felt like Santa Barbara was pretty hoity-toity but that was just my impression…)

      • SB is neither cheap nor diverse. Good if you want to be surrounded by lots of wealthy white people who are really into working out/being outside. Similar to Boulder.
        I’d urge you to consider Baltimore or even the Eastern Shore. My answer depends on (1.) how often you’d need to be back in DC and (2.) will work pay for you to travel back into town.

    • Durham or Chapel Hill, North Carolina?

      • Thanks. I def wanted a couple of Southern towns in the mix.

        • I also hear good things about Asheville, NC.

          • +1 I heard someone call it Austin east, but cannot confirm any similarities since I have not been.

          • Although if Austin wasn’t sufficiently diverse for CityKitty, maybe these other cities wouldn’t be either.
            .
            CityKitty, what in the way of diversity are you looking for? In what way did Austin lack it? (I haven’t been to Austin, but I would’ve expected it to be diverse.)

          • justinbc

            Asheville was long referred to as the SF of the East coast, largely due to its gay population and arts scene, both of which have been a big part of the city for decades. I went to UNC, so I’m obviously partial to Chapel Hill, but it really is a wonderful, cute little town. It’s pretty white though, most of the diversity seems to come from a decent South Asian population. It’s not as cheap as Durham, but a bit nicer, and the weather is A+.

          • Disagreed that Chapel Hill is “pretty white.” I grew up and went to grade school there and I think the school-age population was probably around 15% black. At the time, I think there were more East Asian kids in the schools than South Asian kids, but that might have changed.
            .
            I suspect the undergraduate population might be more like 8-10% black. (I imagine the UNC website has the figures.)
            .
            Chapel Hill used to be markedly nicer than Durham (and a lot more interesting), but Durham has come a long way in the past 15 years or so. There are lots of interesting restaurants and bars.

      • Seconding the Triangle. Chapel Hill if you want the college town; Durham if you want a more hipster feel; Raleigh if you like to be in a city. Durham is a bit more diverse. I lived in Chapel Hill and loved it. It has a small town feel but there’s plenty to do between the three cities. Excellent food scene too. There are also mountains (Asheville) or beaches (Outer Banks) within a day’s drive for weekend trips.

      • Nice to meet another Tar Heel, Justin (go heels!). Chapel Hill is wonderful and its neighboring town, Carrboro, is pretty hip/diverse. Reminds me of Shaw a little bit. The public schools in that area are really great as well if that is ever a future consideration.

        • +1 on the Chapel Hill/Carrboro public schools — that’s why my parents chose to settle there.

    • depending on your definition of “plenty to do for fun” and if you’re outdoorsy – Greenville, SC; Little Rock or Fayetteville, AR

    • Tampa/St Petersburg?

      • Or St Augustine

      • I second Tampa/St. Pete. I’m from there and it has come a LONG way since I left. If it weren’t for a lot of extenuating circumstances I’d move back in a heartbeat. Great weather, tons of outdoorsy stuff to do, and great culture. Downtown St. Pete has undergone a great amount of development. Can’t beat the Cuban food, too!

    • New Orleans, Richmond, Atlanta

      • justinbc

        +1 for NOLA, although it’s getting a lot more expensive as investors dump money into properties. Drinks / food / transportation is still way below DC, as is housing if you live further outside the FQ.

    • Quotia Zelda

      New Orleans!
      Although lately I’m astonished at how much the cost of living has risen.

    • I have family in Bellingham, WA and Eugene, OR. I haven’t spent a ton of time in either but they both seem cute and have a lot going on, especially if you’re into outdoorsy activities.

    • Maybe Baltimore? The cost of living is low and there are some great neighborhoods, such as Fell’s Point. There is a nice art scene as well. And any city that gave us John Waters, Divine and Edgar Allan Poe has to be decent, no? Plus its geographic location makes it easy to visit other East Coast cities as desired.

      • I’d also recommend Dallas (only Dallas proper, no suburbs – maybe downtown, uptown or knox henderson areas). Not sure if Dallas could be considered more diverse than Austin but it’s certainly a bigger city.

      • emvee

        Seconding Baltimore! The city is incredibly diverse both culturally and socio-economically, and the arts scene is flourishing right now. Their food scene is also exploding, with Spike Gjerde influencing others all over the city.

    • Richmond (although not sure how diverse it is?), Baltimore, Providence, RI (again, not sure how diverse, but a friend lives there and it looks awesome)

      • HaileUnlikely

        Agreed on Providence. Much less walkable than DC outside of a few much wealthier neighborhoods, but that wasn’t among the criteria that you listed.

      • Richmond is really diverse. There’s three universities in the center of town and a huge teaching hospital, so there’s lots of smart people. Strong African-American cultural influence in the city. Much cheaper real estate than DC. A short drive to the rural parts of VA and Chesapeake riverfront areas.

      • HaileUnlikely

        Providence has a great deal of diversity as well; immigrants from Cape Verde and Brazil comprise significant proportions of the population.

      • justinbc

        I loved Providence, great food scene. But it definitely falls under my definition of “extreme cold weather”…

        • HaileUnlikely

          Fair enough. I’m from upstate NY. I found Providence’s version of winter much more tolerable than Albany’s or Rochester’s.

          • justinbc

            Hah, when you’re from NC then DC is already bad enough.

          • HaileUnlikely

            I also lived in NC for a few years when I was a child (in Cary). My elementary school did not have air conditioning, and instead of snow days we would sometimes have heat days, where a teacher or parent would faint and then they’d send everybody home. I’ll take Providence.

          • FWIW, the summer makes up for the extreme cold weather in the winter! I thought DC was cold too, but then we moved to Toronto. Surprisingly this winter wasn’t too bad, but there were some bad days. Now I’m enjoying the mostly 75-80 degree weather. I imagine Providence would be similar.

    • I think Denver is a fun city. I would also suggest Minneapolis but it gets extremely cold there.

    • I thought I posted earlier but I don’t see it — have you considered Tuscon, AZ (or somewhere in New Mexico, like Santa Fe?)

    • Emmaleigh504

      Another vote for New Orleans.

    • Savannah, GA

    • hammers

      my first thought was pittsburgh but I don’t know what you consider extreme weather

    • Austin has roughly a 35% Hispanic population, which if you went a bit outside Austin limits and into the San Antonio area, you’d probably see a higher %. Austin is 8% black, 6.3% asian, and 0.9% native american. While there’s a slightly lower than average black population (as an American population as a whole), everything else is pretty consistent with the breakdown of the population as a whole, which is a pretty diverse country…. Besides that, I think that there is a huge diversity of backgrounds/interests/etc in Austin.

      I’d give Austin another look – its hard to say that a place is one thing or another with just a single visit.

      I know diversity means different things to different people, but when a place largely resembles the US as a whole – its hard to say its not diverse, if by not diverse you mean homogeneous. I think of places that lack diversity as Vermont, Utah, or Madison, WI or similar places. Austin is definitely not that!

    • San Diego. Reasonably diverse overall (but not very diverse in certain areas), no cold weather, cost of living is a bit cheaper than DC. Need a car though.

    • saf

      This is very similar to the list that my sister had when she had to move out of NYC (couldn’t afford a big enough place after the second kid was born). They ended up in South Orange NJ and are very happy. The weather might not be quite what you want though.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: trying to get a Rx filled is proving way too difficult. Why does the head pharmacist have to order it? And Why is the head pharmacist only in while I’m a work. ugh
    Rave: my kitty has been extra snuggley lately.

    • re your rant: I went through this the other week. Thank goodness I refilled it as ahead of time as I could because it took them TWO WEEKS to get my refill! (Even though an order is there within 2 business days… I think someone just forgot until I reminded them 3 times…) Ridiculous.

  • My favorite purse is in desperate need of cleaning. I’ve asked at three dry cleaners– one said no, the other two offered to ship it to a 3rd party that will return it in a month (!).
    Any recommendations for any kind of service that will clean a rather nice leather handbag? Preferably in a week or less?

    • Following this thread, I need this info too!

    • Not sure if this is helpful but I think I may have seen a “we clean uggs” sign on American Valet in Tenleytown a couple years ago.

      • The drycleaner closest to me also has a “we clean leather” sign in the window, with some hilariously outdated pictures of people with feathered hair and bomber jackets. That’s the one with a 4-week turnaround time. 🙁

    • Girl on a Hill

      I got a vintage leather skirt cleaned at Best Tailor & Dry Cleaning at 344 8th St NE not too long ago. They did a really great job and it took a week! The skirt looks like new.

  • Quotia Zelda

    Rave: Brought a teapot (and teacup/saucer) in to work, so now my morning and afternoon tea are ever so fancy.
    Rave: Cups with proper saucers. Suck it, mugs!
    Rant: Worried that I maaaaay have become a bit too precious.

  • Rant: I’m not sure if there’s a new pollen swirling around or if it’s just the constant switching between massively over-airconditioned buildings and the blazing heat, but I can’t stop sneezing, sniffling, coughing, and just generally feeling crappy.
    Rant: Special work event this Saturday is all set except that I can’t seem to get my participants to RSVP! I need to know if anyone is actually going to show up for this! Agggh….My nerves are shot!
    Ravant – after yesterday’s discussion all I can think about is signing up for beginner horse riding lessons, but I’m not sure if I can wrangle up the money now that I know replacing my phone is pretty much inevitable. I wish I had a fairy godmother!

    • Sorry you’re sick. I do think something is going around. At least 2 of my coworkers were sick while I was, and I’ve heard from other friends that they had the same symptoms. If you go to your doc make sure you get cough meds with codeine! It does wonders!

  • hammers

    rave: read some late night responses to my rant yesterday, and am just thankful to have some support and understanding. y’all are great.
    rant: Did decide to go to my home town this weekend
    rave: and also decided to stay in a fancy hotel in nearby city on saturday night so getting to treat (my) self and have fun in the city to look forward to.
    RANT: Just learned who will be accompanying me for a two week work trip later this year. Lets say BOOOOOOOOOOOO. I really thought I’d have a new job by now, but the depression is keeping me way way down and stuck. Oh well.
    Rave: Hanging out with my group of friends tonight at our favorite bar for the first time in months; it’s the place I met my SO. Can’t wait 🙂

  • Rave: Sitting outside after the rain
    Rant: Giant slugs crawling in my backyard
    Rant: These slugs don’t go for cheap beer – the saucer of beer (ie slug bait) I put out was still empty this morning
    Rave: Smitten Kitchen chopped salad with feta, lime and mint for dinner, leftovers for lunch

  • Rant: Appliance repairs. The dryer in the rental unit conked out. First the repairman hit me for $90 for 15 minutes of diagnosis and he’ll be back when the part comes in and the vent is clogged, which is why the thermostat conked out. The the vent cleaner (there’s a service for that now) hit me for $40 just to show up (fair enough) then recommended $500 worth of repairs and then “settled” for $200 (down from $225) to clean the vent, which took him all of 5 minutes. Now, the original repair company says that the part is no longer available –on dryer less than 2 years old. Next: the oven. Thermostat appears to be ginchy (loses heat suddenly) and the place that sold it to me wants $100 just to show up and diagnose and $90/hour on top of that to actually fix things. It’s a racket.
    .

    • Pablo Raw

      I want to go visit you man! It’ll be $50 lol

    • On the vent cleaner – You’re supposed to clean the dryer vent every year or so (FEMA says every 3 months, but that seems like too much). If the lint gets caught up in the line, it can cause a fire. There are usually deals on Angie’s list (and other coupon sites) to have it done. It definitely should not cost anywhere near $500.

      A Consumer Reports article about dryer fires: http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/2012/08/truths-and-myths-of-dryer-fires/index.htm
      https://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/clothes_dryers.html

    • HaileUnlikely

      Honest question, as I do not have any idea: what does a professional dryer vent cleaning entail, and what if any part of that can a normal person not do on their own without professional assistance?

      • Honestly, it depends on the complexity/length of your vent system. If your dryer is right next to the outside wall of your house and it vents directly outside – it is pretty easy to pull out the dryer, disconnect the vent hose, vacuum both inside the hose and through the pipe in the wall out to the outside, then reconnect the hose (wiki how has a pretty good description of the process). If your dryer is on the interior of your house and there is a long and/or twisty path to the outside, it is much harder to do yourself. You’ll also likely want to clean from the outside, so if your dryer vents to a high floor of your home, it is harder to do yourself. PS – you want the dryer off when you do all of this.

        • Also, often you can do a combined vent cleaning with a cleaning of your ducts. I’ve done that before because I have terrible allergies and I see some relief for a while after the ducts are cleaned. No, I don’t work for one of these companies 🙂

        • HaileUnlikely

          Ok, got it. Mine is right against an exterior wall, my duct is less than 5 feet long, I installed it myself, and I clean it myself about once a year. I didn’t think of the scenario in which the duct was a whole lot longer. I was wondering if they took apart the dryer and cleaned internal parts that are not accessible without disassembling it or something…

  • Rant: Trying to find a sweet muffin recipe with decent nutrition (high protein & fiber) without any luck. We have a long trip this weekend and normally I would bake savory egg muffins but that’s not going to work for me right now.
    Rave: I don’t know what had me laughing more while reading Mrs. Trump’s speech last night: the pretty obvious lifting of lines from FLOTUS or the Rickrolling. Honestly, it was probably the Rickrolling.
    Rave: Roasted pattypan squash may be my new favorite summer food.

    • Andie302

      How did you do the pattypan (cut, whole, seasoning, etc.)? I keep seeing them at the farmers market but don’t know anything about them!

      • I cut them up either into chunks or slices and toss with a little oil. Then I’ll either roast in a 450 degree oven, saute on the stovetop, or put into a grill basket and put out on the BBQ when we have it going. It’s really good with garlic, rosemary, and butter. You really can treat them like any other summer squash.

      • I love the small yellow ones, they have a delicate, buttery flavor compared to zucchini. I got some in a CSA share last year. I just chop them into chunks and saute them in oil, salt, pepper, a little garlic, and herbs if I have them.

    • I sort of think that someone just got really high and thought to themselves, how much can I screw with Trump’s people?

    • Have you looked into bran muffin recipes? You can dial up the sugar to make them sweeter or mix some berries in the batter.

  • Rant: So very tired.

  • I Dont Get It

    Didn’t Sleep Well Rant: Lucy, once again, fell out of bed but
    Did Sleep Well Rave: She fell directly into a laundry basket and never even woke up! Pictures are on social media!
    Didn’t Sleep Well Rant: Is there an easy way to remove decades-old scotch tape from paneling while trying to take down a Scott Baio poster hidden under your Farrah Fawcett poster? Asking for a friend.
    Didn’t Sleep Well Rant: Someone posted on another thread yesterday about an impending fresh sweet corn shortage in the region. Is this true or is someone trolling me? THIS WOULD BE A CRISIS PEOPLE!!!!!!!

  • Thanks to all for your city suggestions. B-more folks: I did live there for two years. In terms of diversity I want someplace that has a mix of folks or at least a good amount of African Americans.

  • Rant: Mtpbaby came down with a fever this morning.
    Rave: My mom could come in and babysit.
    Rant: Spent the rest of the morning searching for our apparently lost visitor parking pass
    Rave: My dad ended up dropping her off so I didn’t need it after all.
    Rant: Damn thing is still missing. Argh.

  • Rave: Just claimed two pokemon gyms at the same time.
    .
    Rant: Totally did not realize I had to actually go in and hit a button to win my coins. So now I’m out 20 pokecoins. NOOOOO. This game sucks. I don’t want to play anymore…..

  • That One Guy

    Rant: One of those days where I feel like everything is rushed. Ugh.

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