Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user Paul Scott (IG: @pdiddypics)

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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107 Comment

  • Rant: Dishwasher suddenly stopped working last night before draining the water, and the touch pad is completely unresponsive.
    Rant: This would be a little less problematic in 6 weeks when we should be largely done with bottles for daycare–why couldn’t it wait???
    Rave: Our appliance repair folks have an online system for requesting service, so at least we could get the service request in right away. Fingers crossed for a quick appointment….
    Rant: the usual sleep struggles with mtpbaby and complete uncertainty as to what is causing them. Trying to not run myself around in mental circles.

    • Bear

      That happened to our dishwasher not too long ago – water from our drying rack was dripping off the counter and got into the electrical panel.

  • Where is that photo from? Very cool wall (and cool photo).

  • Rave: I have been having trouble finding jeans that fit me for a really, really long time, mostly because I have chicken legs. Yesterday I decided to try on a pair of Junior’s jeans. I walked into the fitting room having flashback to high school back-to-school shopping when I would inevitably not fit into the clothes and end up having to wear mom jeans instead. However, yesterday, they fit! And even better, I fit into a size that I have not worn since 9th grade! Either this diet and exercise crap is paying off or vanity sizing has finally caught up to where I need it to be!
    Revel: This weather!
    Rant: It’s not really sticking around. I need fall in my life!

  • Rave: Feeling less grumpy today and hoping the rest of the city is, too. I don’t know what was up yesterday!
    Rave: Found myself a copy of A Separate Peace, courtesy of DC Public Library’s banned books scavenger hunt. Thanks, DCPL! Awesome initiative.

  • Rave: ran into Hammers last night. Nice seeing you!
    Rant: guy who walked by and repeatedly told me to hold my dog. When we eventually started walking again and overtook him he walked up onto a ramp to an atm, like behind the rail. I get that some people are scared of large dogs, but I was holding him, it’s a really wide sidewalk, and he doesn’t show interest in people walking by at all (unless they are his friends). Thanks for the input on how to walk my dog!
    Rave: nice dinner with my sister last night
    Rave: got the project detail and didn’t even have to interview!
    Rant: figuring out how to do my normal job and this new job at the same time.
    Rave: my dog was finally nice to the only small dog he’s ever been a jerk to!

  • Rant: Just found out that GGW has been posting photos to instagram without link attribution, in violation of the license agreed to when posting to their Flickr pool and in violation of the license on my Flickr photos. They do not seem responsive about removing photos/adding links. Has anyone else dealt with this sort of thing before?

  • Rave: LOVE this cooler weather!
    Rant: But it won’t last.
    Rant: Also, I don’t know if it’s just the overcast skies or what, but I’ve been in a very contemplative mood this morning, most wondering what the point of it all is. Like, maybe this would make a good, low-key Friday Question of the Day, but really, what is the point, the meaning of life? I’m sure that answer varies from person to person, but I don’t feel like I’ve sorted my point of view out yet. And sometimes I get so bummed out at what seems to be the ultimate meaningless of everything.
    Rave: Got stuff done and continuing to get stuff done
    Rant: I have a cut on the corner of my mouth/lips and it hurts like crazy to eat anything.
    Rave: Going to see the majority of my family up in Philly for the baby shower tomorrow – I’m so psyched to be an aunt again!

    • Something is definitely in the air! I blame it on the Harvest Moon rising soon. It signifies a change in seasons, and the beginning of the natural ebb of life as we march towards the darkness of winter.
      As far as the meaning of life goes… for me, I feel like the older I get the more happy I am with the knowledge that there may be no real point. I feel like the meaning of life is to be alive. To live, to love, to just… experience life.
      ….and that mentality is exactly why I have dropped out of not one, but two degree programs, have very little savings, and a gaggle of kids – so word to the wise, it may not be the best philosophy in life! But, I would say that I am a naturally happier person than most people I know. I can honestly say that if I were to die to tomorrow (which of course I don’t want!), I would feel like I have lived my life to its fullest with very few regrets.

      • hahaha! Good perspectives, Anonamom! I do think that as I look back, I’m so much happier and in such a better place than I was 5 or 10 or 15 years ago, but things seem less clear when you’re living in the midst of them.

    • You have to read Camus’s “Myth of Sisyphus” and find joy in the the absurdity of life. Lack of larger Meaning or Purpose doesn’t mean you can’t find meaning or purpose, and in that, find joy. “The struggle itself toward the heights is enough to fill a man’s heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy.”
      Also, mocking the gods helps.

      • I like this! I do find a great deal of joy in life’s absurdities, but having been raised by a bunch of (otherwise lovely) born-again Christians and then having subsequently abandoned most of that stuff, it’s still hard to shake off the ingrained teachings of “life has a higher purpose, blah blah blah”

      • I like this, and I agree completely.

      • That is one of my favorite quotes ever. Thank you for reminding me of it today, Irving Streete.

    • That One Guy

      It’s an overly simplified, but finding peace/contentment with the you as you are.

  • skj84

    Rant: I just noticed my phone number is wrong on my business cards. Less than a week before I’m leaving for a major business trip. I encourage people to email me rather than call, but on the off hand someone tries to reach me via phone I have no clue who’s number it will go to. At least the email is correct. I ordered new cards but they will probably not arrive until after I’m back.

    Query: My trip to LA is my first trip to the west coast and into PST time zone. How does everyone deal with Jet lag?

    • “on the off hand someone tries to reach me via phone I have no clue who’s number it will go to” — Try calling that number to 1) find out who it is, 2) explain to them the error with your business cards, and 3) give them your correct number so they know how to redirect calls.
      And in the meantime, I’d make sure you cross out the error on your current business cards and write the correct digit(s) in so that you won’t give out any with inaccurate info.

    • On jet lag: Three hours is not all that big of a deal. Going in that direction, you’ll find that you have no problem being up on time for morning events. The difficulty will be staying awake in the evening.
      The more exposure you have to natural light, the better your body adjusts. You might want to take a drowsiness-inducing antihistamine like Benadryl (diphenhydramine) if you wake up in the middle of the night and have trouble going back to sleep.

      • Correction: diphenhydramine HCl.

      • I’m going to argue that if it’s your first time, it can be a big deal. I spent a week for work in Seattle, work up at 4 am everyday, and was an exhausted, sick mess by the end of it. Some people just have a hard time adjusting.
        I’ve heard melatonin tea works well, but I’ve never tried it.

        • Fair enough re. potential big deal if it’s your first time, if it’s the largest time difference you’ve ever dealt with, and/or if other circumstances are involved.
          If it’s the kind of work thing where you aren’t expected to be interacting with people in the evenings, it could work out OK. However, if you’re expected to be “on” not just all day, but ALSO at evening networking/socializing activities, I could see that being exhausting.

          • Heck, having to be “on” all workday AND in a work context in the evening is exhausting even in the same timezone, let alone another one.

          • skj84

            There is an alternate event in the evening on Thursday. Its supposed to a huge networking opportunity, but I’m on the fence on going. It lasts from 8-10pm, not too mention it comes after a full day of conference stuff. Will probably make a game time decision.(I also want to explore LA if I feel up to it.)

      • I went to college in LA so I did the time-zone shift a lot. I agree with textdoc about being rested at night. I think you’ll be fine, but if you have some time around dinner to take a nap, I find that helps (and I’m not a big napper). Also if you can get to sleep really early the first night, that might help a bit.
        I hope you enjoy LA even if it’s for business. I wish I could tag along! Haha…..

    • Nyquil makes a sleep aid called Zquil. You can find it at any drug store. I generally take it the first night I get anywhere to help me sleep through the night. I find it’s helpful but not too strong to make you groggy. Also, I find drinking tons of water, in general, helps deal with the dry air of flights and hotels. It generally makes me feel better when travelling.

      • The active ingredient in Zzzquil — and in the PM part of Tylenol PM and Advil PM, and in Simply Sleep — is diphenhydramine HCl, a.k.a. Benadryl.
        I’ve found that — for whatever reason — the generic version of Benadryl is usually cheaper than the generic version of Tylenol PM, Simply Sleep, etc., even though it’s the exact same mg of diphenhydramine HCl.
        There’s a Unisom sleep aid that’s not diphenhydramine HCl — it’s some other drowsiness-inducing antihistamine. But almost all other OTC sleep aids are diphenhydramine HCl.

  • Rant: I’m going to come off like a Trump supporter here but I dislike the architecture, location and concept of the African American Museum. Like a lot of modern architecture, it’s all concept and no beauty. I recognize that it’s drawn from African design and makes a “statement.” This doesn’t ameliorate the fact that it lacks grace and sits on the Mall with all the elan of a misplaced office park cube. Speaking of the Mall, it used to be a delightful place to kil a few hours with a frisbee and a secret beer before it became cool to put your favorite cause in the middle of it, with — with the exception of the Vietnam Memorial — disastrous results. The unironic ape-ing of Albert Speer’s neo-fascist design in the WWII Memorial — that thing is straight out of Nuremberg — the ridiculous overkill of the Roosevelt Memorial (has anyone else been to the original FDR Memorial on the Archives grounds?) And now this random cubic cakestack. And finally, does anyone else see a problem with creating a separate but equal museum for black people? Nice that they put it out of the way. Now no has to accidentally encounter “black” history on their way to see “American” history. at the other museums. And now we’ve set a precedent. Yesterday I noticed that legislation supporting a Hispanic museum is moving forward. Certainly the Asians are not far behind and I’m kind of hoping, that we Irish get one. Really, giving the immense symbolism of a Mall location, shouldn’t we be working to find a way to integrate the history of the nation, rather than atomize it?

    • +1. However, I think precedent was set long ago when they developed a Museum of the American Indian – architecturally, it’s not as….unusual as the new AAHM, but uh, we’ve be shoving “other” cultures off as a side show for a very long time. I agree that it would be better to enlarge the American History Museum(s) and simply merge all these different histories so that people are FORCED to reckon with this nation’s past.

    • I think it’s gorgeous; I love the sculptural shape and how the screens catch the light and look very different at different times of day. I am very eager to see the architecture inside as well — the photo above just stokes that excitement. And from what I have heard of the collection, I will be impatiently waiting until the opening crowds reduce enough so I can go see it. (I am thinking late winter, before Cherry Blossom season.)

      Although I wouldn’t call it ‘out of the way’, being the first thing that is seen from the Washington Monument grounds, I do wish there were a physical connection to the American History Building across the street, which would have both practical purpose (crossing 14th Street is going to become very crowded very soon) but it would also help counter-act the separatism that you mentioned, a valid point. I would have liked to see something like the connection between the National Gallery building; I will not be surprised if something is built in the next decade or so.

      As for Frisbee (etc), agreed. I also miss the openness of the city in years past, but the Mall lost that long before this building was planned, and that is something to be mourned.

      (PS – Not picking a fight, just responding. Thnx.)

    • skj84

      I don’t necessarily see it as shoving black history to the side, but giving its own place the shine. So much of my history is a footnote. The is so much to be said that it more than deserves its own place. I’ve mentioned this before, but my mother had to fight to get black history taught in our very white school system in NJ. There is so much that people don’t know, or choose not to learn, that we need all the space we can to showcase. To go in depth and give the subject the time and reverence it deserves. Its like the saying, Much of “white” history is core course, while other people’s history is an elective. Its time for Black history to be that core courses. And I know the design isn’t everyones cup of tea, but its based off of a Corona, which is Yorba
      crown. To me it looks like a basket, a basket that contains a wealth of history that needs to be shared. I am so psyched to see the story of my people finally being give the attention it deserves.

      • Thanks for your insight, skj, I admit I’m torn on the architeture (part of me loves it, part of me thinks it looks so drastically out of place), and I do appreciate the need for lots of time and space to really dig into the intracacies of Africa American culture – it’s like when I went to the Jewish History museum in Philly and found out so much information, part of me really wished it had been integrated better into other areas of “main” museums, but another part of me was grateful for the chance to go really in-depth.

    • That One Guy

      Maybe I’m reading meaning where there is none, but I find the stark contrast fitting. Like its a transplant into a foreign environment that needs to be looked at and acknowledged.

      • skj84

        I really like that interpretation,

        • +1. I love the contrast, and I think the out-of-place-ness really attracts the attention it deserves. My grandpa used to say that any publicity is good publicity, and this is a good example.

      • As someone involved in architecture, I find the discussion of contrast fascinating.

        I wonder what would be a less ‘contrasty’ look – when the buildings on the Mall are very varied as it is. There are:

        two Classical/’Washington’ (domes & columns) buildings (the National Gallery West Building and Natural History),
        two eclectic Victorian mash-ups (the Castle and the Arts & Industry Building),
        two boxy warehouses with windows (American History and Air & Space), and
        two 20th century modernist/sculpturals (Natl Gallery East Building, and Museum of the American Indian).

        It’s interesting to me that the African American History & Culture building is seen as being so very different from what is already on the Mall. It seems to me that it isn’t busting any barriers by being a sculptural design; it certainly belongs with the final group (above). Certainly the specifics of the new building’s design are unique, but it’s really just one more unique building among a group of unique designs.

        • good points. Maybe it seems to stand out more because of the lack of (from what I can see) landscaping/outdoor space and few neighboring buildings – it really does seem like it was just plonked down in the midst of the mall…

        • And don’t forget the Hirshhorn….

          • Good catch! (I really would like to forget it – don’t like the building or most of the collection – so I think it was a Freudian slip on my part…)

          • Yeah, not my cup of tea either, but it helps prove your point. My favorite which you and I forgot – the Freer.

    • I’m applauding wildly for about 80% of your old-man rant, and will join you in shooing others off our nation’s lawn. (Seriously, have you EVER seen anything more obviously designed by clueless, contextless committee than the WWII memorial??)
      However. The FDR memorial does not qualify for this screed. It is waaaay off to one end. It is integrated into the landscape, and actually improves the space with a narrative, unlike the aggressively plunked-down WWII memorial and African American Museum.

    • +100 – Very well written and I agree completely.

    • I don’t think that there is anything at all wrong with dedicating museums of great importance to entire groups of people who have been marginalized and capitalized off of in order to make America what it is today. To be perfectly honest, the American History museum is a re-telling of mainstream, middle class, and largely white American history and really always has been. The African American History is needed just as much as the Native American History Museum, the Holocaust Museum, the Sackler and Freer Art Galleries, and all the other museums that present a different view of the historical, homogeneous view of what it is to be American that has long been provided by the American History museum currently on the Mall.

    • Wow … just wow. You must not be aware of plans to build a national women’s history museum, either, or I’m sure that would offend you, too. The historical refusal to integrate the history-telling by and about white men is what has led to other groups wanting to tell their own stories – in their own voices. Museums give voice to voices long not heard. How could anyone who cares about education, history, and people knowing more about our past be offended?
      Though I must say, I agree about the WWII memorial and the Roosevelt memorial.

      • Anon, my interpretation of what Irving Streete is saying is less about him being “offended” and more about a genuine concern about whether or not we’re simply playing along with the dominant cis white male culture. I appreciate what you’re saying about the multitude of different museums giving a voice to those who were long relegated to the sidelines, and I agree, mostly. But I do think there is cause to wonder if we are doing ourselves a disservice by splitting up into smaller and more specific parts, rather than trying to find ways to tell a larger, more complex story in some of these large museums. I don’t know the answer, but it’s a good question to keep asking oneself.

        • skj84

          I get that sentiment, but I feel that 1. No real effort has been made to seamlessly integrate the stories of marginalized people into main stream history, and 2. These stories are so big they all deserve their own space. Like having a museum dedicated to African Americans, to Women, Latinos, Asians etc..allows for broader in depth narrative. It doesn’t take away from American history. This is a generalization, but I feel like people lean towards the mindset of “different” being a bad thing, a thing to judge. Where I feel we should celebrate the things and experiences that make us unique!

          • Oh I totally agree that it doesn’t take away, on the contrary it adds richness and complexity. I guess maybe I’m feeling discouraged that by separating out into different space and place, the people who would not normally seek out another experience are therefore free to avoid it, instead of having to confront it. But who knows? Maybe those folks are so much in denial that it wouldn’t matter anyway.

          • I completely agree with skj here; there was a huge opportunity to re-vamp and expand the collection at the American History Museum when it underwent renovation several years ago, in fact, that’s what we were promised. Instead, it opened up with the same exhibits it has always had. That museum pays more attention to pop culture than it does to actual history (because Dorothy’s red slippers are clearly more relevant to American history than a shawl that belonged to Harriet Tubman which now finds a home down the street?). Since they didn’t do this, there is even more need for these types of museums.

          • Ahh….I didn’t know that the American History museum recently underwent a re-vamp, they really missed the boat then, in that case!

          • Yeah, it was closed for a little while (2 years?) and re-opened in 2008. They also closed an entire wing for some time after that which re-opened last year I think. The collection, however, is basically the same from when I first visited over 20 years ago.

  • Girl on a Hill

    Rant: Forgot my wallet at home today and didn’t realize until I had reached the metro; it was too late to go back.
    Rave: Throwing my annual H st. Festival party tomorrow, time to bridge different friend groups!
    Revel: After much delay, I finished reading ‘A Little Life.’ I’ve never cried so at so many different points reading a book and can’t stop thinking about it. I thought it was written well and extremely unsettling. Would make a great book club book for people who can handle the subject matter.

    • topscallop

      Did you hear they’re turning it into a mini-series? I’m not sure I can handle watching it, but maybe I will. There were so many times reading that book that I had a physical reaction to an emotional scene – on the metro one time I actually put my hand to my forehead as if I were an 18th century damsel about to faint.

      • Girl on a Hill

        Wow, a mini-series? I wonder who they’ll cast…I have such strong images of what each character looks like in my head. I read it on the metro to and definitely gasped a few times. Also the way that book is written, I never knew when a particularly horrific part was coming. There was no way to be ready!

    • A Little Life has been on my “to read” for a while, I really want to read it now!

  • Rave: Having our “engagement” photos taken tomorrow, even though the wedding is just under two months away! Super excited, doing all the monuments and touristy things. Even bigger rave is that a friend’s boyfriend is doing it for free!
    Rant: Not excited about the state of my hair or the chubbiness of my face for aforementioned photos. Is it possible to drop five lbs in the next month and a half? (probably but I just LOVE FOOD)
    Rave: Left my phone on the bus yesterday (the Georgetown shuttle, thankfully, not a metro bus). Didn’t realize till I was at the bottom of the Dupont escalator, so sprinted up the other side (which I’m proud of), ran back to the shuttle, rode all the way back to Georgetown…and my driver managed to catch up to the bus I had been on previously so could retrieve my phone.
    Rave: WEATHER

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: the new guy needs to slow his ass down; he’s making us old timers look bad.
    Rave: woke up early enough to not rush to get out the door.

  • Rant: Saw a women fall at the top of the escalators on the Metro this morning.
    Rave: A number of folks who went to her aid. By the time I got to her, she was up and walking again.
    Rave: It’s Friday.
    Rave: Can finally telework again after problem with login that was finally solved this morning.
    Rave: Going to see doctor tomorrow about medication that I suspect has been causing my backaches.
    Rant: Itchy bump on ankle got me thinking about Zika for some weird reason.

  • Rant: This medication has me feeling like I’m in slow motion today.
    Rave: The early morning walk (pre-medication) with the Other Mrs. Rabbit was fantastic. The temperature was perfect.
    Rant: I may be a policy person but I am so over this election year.
    Rave: Putting together a box to ship to my mother-in-law in South Africa has been more fun than I had thought it would be. We’ve been trying to think of all the things she would love to get and so far it includes a new dress for her to wear to her tango classes and an all-zone dvd of La Dolce Vida. She’s going to love it.

  • Rave: Friday! Getting a dishwasher installed on the weekend — or at least I hope it is installed. I worry that the old dishwasher left by the previous owner was installed inappropriately, so I may have to have a plumber come out to re-fit the new one.
    Rant: Im pretty house poor at the moment (not so much of a rant, just need to ‘slow my roll’ and stop trying to fix everything all at once in my fixer upper. this is hard for me, cuz Im a Class A impatient person)

  • Rave: Friday!

    Rant: How do I get over feeling blatantly left out by two people I’m friends with while it is actually happening? I mentioned it once to each of them and the first time, one of them apologized and the second time it happened, i mentioned it to the other one and she was like “yeah, I was moody and grumpy” (so acknowledging that they were behaving like jerks but no actual apology) and then it happened again last night. One of them wants to come to my Friendsgiving, but after yesterday I kind of don’t want her there because I don’t like how I’m being treated. Do I just stop being friends with them since telling them doesn’t seem to do any good? Brings back so much shit from my childhood, I don’t care how old I am.

    Rave/Rant: This behavior with them, plus other hurtful situations recently with other people, kind of make me wish I lived in NYC (where I lived before I moved here) but I have a lot of friends here who are incredible, a stable job, and I own my place. I’d be giving a lot up to move back there – but I kind of wonder if a clean fresh slate might be better? I’ve become so disillusioned recently and I’m not sure if it’s a midlife crisis, but it’s an awfully big risk if that’s not what it is, you know?

    • “Do I just stop being friends with them since telling them doesn’t seem to do any good?”
      You could try bringing up it up with them at least one more time to see if that makes any difference.
      It is a hard, hard thing to “break up” with a friend. But when you get to a point where the friendship is causing you a lot of pain, it’s possible that it might be less painful not to have the friendship at all.
      Focus on the friends you have here who bring you joy.

      • I’ll definitely be focusing on those friends, for sure.

        And I’m going to not engage with these women anymore, except for when we’re hanging out with mutual friends and only then, at a bare minimum. I’m tired of being dragged into high school nonsense.

    • To be honest, I’ve stopped inviting people to things who don’t invite me to things, and I’ve also been less engaging with people who will invite me but decline my invitations repeatedly. I might be wrong, but I don’t feel like relationships should be one-sided. If it’s causing you stress, it’s not healthy.

        • Just in case I wasn’t clear (because I probably wasn’t clear) they are actively excluding me in situations where we are already all together – that’s when I mentioned it to both of them on separate occasions.

      • Agreed generally that relationships shouldn’t be one-sided, but:
        For quite a while now I haven’t been very good at initiating social things. (I am trying to improve at this; I used to be much better at it.)
        As long as you enjoy their company, I’d give the benefit of the doubt to people who aren’t too good on the initiating-things side of things but who happily accept your invitations. (Unless you get the feeling that they _do_ initiate social things — just not with you.)

        • “(Unless you get the feeling that they _do_ initiate social things — just not with you.)”
          That’s what I meant! I just phrased it poorly. There are a few people who I used to invite to things all the time, until I started seeing pictures of them doing things together all the time and never once inviting me :] At that point I said “Eh, whatever! Onto the next one.”

          • Yes, that. I initiate things all the time (and other friends don’t invite me to things thinking that I already have things going on, which I’ve told them might not be true, and it’s nice to be asked, and that’s changed).
            They initiate social things with each other, and they do it when I’m literally standing right next to them. So yeah. Time to let them go.

  • Rave: It is finally time to drink Oktoberfest beer. If you’ve had one before tonight you are doing it wrong.

  • topscallop

    Rant: roommate drama
    Rave: BF is sweet and supportive and makes everything better
    Rave: all the beer tomorrow

    • Snallygaster or an Oktoberfest event?! I think a lot of us will be drinking all the beer tomorrow. My office was even talking about this at our team meeting today!

      • topscallop

        Snallygaster! The weather is supposed to be nice and I’m really nerding out about the options. Hopefully the lines aren’t too crazy.

        • Yay! I’m going, too. I wanted to go last year but something else was happening so this will be my first time. I’m also a little nervous about the lines but I think it will still be enjoyable even if it’s pretty crowded.

          • I really wanted to go this year but I have to go to this baby shower instead. Ah well, hopefully there’s next year!

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