Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

Photo by PoPville flickr user ambyrglow

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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166 Comment

  • I may have the opportunity to take a new assignment overseas, but I’d have to go fast (like four weeks). I own a a 600 sq foot apartment in Columbia Heights in a small building (less than 10 units). Any opinion on best management company? Before I didn’t use a management company, but still had the home warranty. Since the warranty has expired, I think it would be best to have a management company. THANKS!

  • Where is that store in picture with that cheese? I love good cheeses.

  • Rave: LOVELY weather
    Rant: I am not on spring break like all the kids in VA to enjoy said lovely weather

    Rave: Finally got my smart thermostat installed
    Rant: it ended up costing more than I thought b/c I needed an HVAC guy to come out

  • Rave: This weather! Debating whether I want to invite people over this weekend. I haven’t had people over in awhile and I always feel like it gets expensive but if I go easy on the snacks maybe it’ll be worthwhile. Tbh getting some cheap beer doesn’t cost much more than what I’d spend going out anyway. And I’m trying to live it up on my roof before I move this summer.
    Rant: Still waiting on mom’s biopsy results.

    • Oh oh additional RAVE: That dog named General on the news last night that opened the door and walked out of the animal hospital. SO CUTE and so happy he was found!

      • General was very cute and so smart, I was wondering why he got that bruise near his nose, then realized he was “practicing”.

    • Thinking of you and your mom – I hope the results are okay.

      • Thank you, LedroitTigah. Me too. The doctor’s seemed hopeful that it was nothing, but we went through this already two years ago, and we’re not sure what to do if it happens again…

      • Ditto this! Fingers and toes crossed and sending positive vibes.

    • Ask your friends to bring something to eat with them to share? That always helps.

      • I did this the last two times and people over-brought and I ended up having to have parties to finish off the food and drinks from the parties. Hahaha….. I guess that’s not a bad problem to have in the big scheme of things.

  • Rave: New Orleans vacation was amazing! I couldn’t have asked for better weather. We had a blast and boyfriend did very well with the family. Watching him with my 88-year-old grandma was especially endearing.
    Rant: I do not want to be back at work but here I am. I was cranky this morning from exhaustion and a severe case of the I-dont-wannas. I miss the sunshine festival life already.
    Rave: In case Zelda has unplugged like I did over the weekend, she found me at the airport and sat with us on the plane! She’s lovely! I was headachey and stressed over having to leave a bunch of things undone at work so it was really nice to just say “screw it” and chat with someone. The flight there was so much quicker than the return!

  • Rave: That picture makes me want cheese, wine, and a patio. Is it too early for happy hour?
    Rave: Baby Artie and I went to seder at a friend’s house last night; he lasted much longer than I anticipated he would.
    Rant: I am very tired and underslept today.
    Rant: So late on Baby Artie’s birthday thank you notes. I used to be so much more on top of these things. Better late than never, right?
    Rave: If that’s my biggest complaint, I’m doing ok and enjoying a privileged existence.

    • We went to a Seder too and Baby F handled it great!! I’m definitely struggling today probably more than he is…

      • It gets a bit harder when they are bigger–both of mine struggled mightily! We only made it through half of the seder. Oh well. Hopefully tonight will go a bit more smoothly–and if all else fails, we have a third opportunity this weekend! 😛

        • We made it about 2/3s of the way through and then had to leave. I imagine that next year he won’t be so well behaved. Being able to shove a boob in his face to keep him quiet is an awesome pacifiying technique while it lasts.

          • Lol, mtpbaby was so excited to get in his chair but was so grumpy when it wasn’t time to eat yet. I think life will be easier if I cut up some apple to give them as a snack either before Seder or during the beginning of it. And of course we ran late, so the kids got super tired/cranky/wired. Oops.

  • Rant: after living month-to-month at $2000/month after our lease ended, my LL decided to increase the rent to $4500 a month in an effort to force us out and sell the condo.

    • Well that’s absurd.

      • Not if the LL isn’t rent controlled. If they have less than 4 properties then they can increase their rent after the lease to whatever they want.

        Why shouldn’t a small landlord be able to set their own rates?

        • I didn’t say it was illegal. I just said it was absurd. I’m allowed to have my own opinions, too, opinions. Geez…..

        • I’m not sure that’s entirely true. They can raise it to market rent, but I seem to recall (when I asked for some legal advice when I was in a similar situation – rent wasn’t raised, but landlord wanted me out to sell his condo) being told that if they raise it to something clearly over market, you can argue that it is retaliatory against your rights and illegal – then they’d have to prove it is market rent for your place – go get some competent legal advice, and don’t stop if the first one you talk to tells you they can raise it to whatever they want, find another attorney. Good luck.

          • Yea, it seems to be a reasonableness test, and market rent could certainly help to test that amount. Doubling your rent to avoid topa (which you may still have rights to within some time period after moving out) seems pretty illegal to me. I’d contact office of tenant advocate.

        • That’s silly. They should just give 3 months notice that they want to move back into the condo, then sell it sometime after. They skip out on TOPA and don’t have to jack up rates. Few folks would question an owner wanting to move back into their own property.

          • “They should just give 3 months notice that they want to move back into the condo, then sell it sometime after.” IIRC, the landlord is required to live in the place for 12 months after moving back in before he/she can sell — he/she doesn’t get to say “Oh, I’m moving back in” and then a couple of months later place it on the market.

          • Do you really think there’s any sort of policing on this?

          • Policing? I doubt that the city checks proactively, but if a former tenant notices the for-sale listing and reports the landlord, I bet the city would be happy to fine the landlord and might make him/her pay damages to the tenant.

          • Potential damages that are significantly lower than the cost of buying out the tenant’s TOPA rights. 😉 Besides, most reasonable tenants don’t spend the next year ardently watching to see if their old landlord sold their condo.

          • A lot of reputable title insurance companies requires to see topa documentation before they grant coverage.

    • $4500?!?! Craziness.

    • Andie302

      This is such a jerk move – and they are probably trying to get you out because they don’t want to have to deal with TOPA during the listing/sale. You might be able to negotiate with the landlord to keep your rent the same and that you’ll sign away your TOPA rights (but you might be leaving money on the table, and he/she may not go for it). Do you have any interest in buying the place? If so, you could try and split the savings on the commissions by doing the transaction privately – but that’s only if you might like to buy.

    • Whoa. Where is it? (general location, not specific. Just curious about how close to/far from reality $4500 is.)

    • Accountering

      I would react negatively to this. I would reach out to LL to tell him this is clearly illegal, and that you are going to push back very hard, and make this sale very difficult. Alternatively, if he is willing to be reasonable, you will waive your TOPA rights in exchange for the last two months rent free, and you will move out prior to closing and make showings easy etc.
      You have a lot of power here.

    • Even if you move out on your own accord I think they still have to get TOPA papers to you. At least when i moved out of my last apt (because i was buying a place) i STILL had to sign, notarize and send the TOPA papers to my ex-landlords agent. These people sound shady af

  • Rant: Decided, just for fun, to spend May on some sort of low-carb diet as runup to the son’s beach marriage. Girlfriend who, admittedly doesn’t have all day to burn calories while getting back in shape for rowing (and who blames me for putting weight on her), decided to extend it to the rest of this month. One day in and I am crazy with hunger and sick of sobriety. Oh, well, only 47 more days to go — hottest old guy on the beach.
    Rant: Girlfriend: “I have to go to dinner at the Prime Rib tonight. What am I going to eat?” (duh). Me: “I have to go to Red, White and Basil tonight. What the hell am *I* going to eat?”
    Rave: a dribble of freelance work and a lot of Air BnB-ing means I won’t have to dip into saving (again) for a couple more months.
    Rant: I’m very bad at looking for work, both in terms of motivation and technique.
    Rave: Perfecting my slacking technique (though, without day drinking, it doesn’t seem right) but with just enough newly-discovered housekeeping chops to keep me from turning into a Seth Rogan character and pissing off the girlfriend.

    • Love your raves! I’ve always been curious about the low-carb diet and may try it over the coming weeks. Are you subbing anything in for the lost carbs?
      For daytime stuff, when I was between full-time gigs I really liked going to the events on LinkTank (https://dc.linktank.com). Good way to learn things, meet interesting people, and there you can eat lunch on other people’s dime.

      • We’re totally making this up as we go along. I’m going to have to substitute something for the carbs because I actually am in semi-serious training for the rowing team — I need a reasonable caloric intake. What we’re probably going to end up in is a “no alcohol or refined white stuff” diet that tries, as much as possible to eliminate bread/pasta. potatoes, white rice, sugars (except fructose in actual fruit) and that sort of stuff but isn’t actually pursuing the body chemistry change that supposedly makes the Atkins and other gung-ho diets effective. Last night I agonized for five minutes and decided that unsweetened oatmeal was acceptable for my morning yogurt ‘n’ fruit, but swore off canned beans forever because the can I ate has so much molasses in it that I might as well have had a cupcake.
        So, you’re saying that if I cough up $6/month for Linktank Premium, I’ll make it up in free grazing after panel discussions? 🙂

        • Thanks, that’s really helpful. I think I need to start with the no alcohol part – too many calories and too much money! For the beans, if you wash them in a colander you can actually get rid of most of the sodium/sugar (per my nutritionist friend).

          I found the $6 worth it, but you gotta be diligent to go to the ones that are specifically identified as receptions or lunchtime events.

          • +1 on washing beans. They’re pretty salty for me, so I run them through a few times to get all the liquid off.
            On the low carb front, I’m doing super low carb, high fat, medium protein. I guess fat is replacing the carbs. Nothing is excluded out right; I just track everything and budget calories accordingly. It was rough at the start, but you get used to it after a while. Fyi, alcohol is low carb, and if I’m in the mood for a drink, I budget it into my calories (roughly 100 cal/shot of whiskey). I’m not drinking excessively nor every day.

        • Canned beans? That’s no way to live. There is (not kidding) a Bean of the Month club, and it’s a whole new world of beans. Rancho Gordo, I think. Check it out!

          • I’ve actually met Rancho Gordo (and argued with him on line — he’s cantankerous but lovable) and eaten many of his beans. I was just raiding the cupboard because I didn’t feel like shopping or cooking and thought they’d work well with the leftover half-smokes, and I’m on a plan to eat or through out everything in my girfriend’s cupboards that suspect have been there since before we started dating. 🙂
            I’m sure there will be many beans in out future, even though neither the Atkins of the paleo people approve.

        • I am incredibly unpleasant to be around when I go low carb so I do brown rice, quinoa, or rice/quinoa pasta every day. In my experience alcohol makes a big difference. I came back from Europe way more puffy than I started from the lunch and dinner wine intake…

      • That One Guy

        What about munching on jerky?

    • anonymouse_dianne

      The Prime Rib has the city’s best Crab Imperial (my mom’s cousin is the owner and we eat there on special occasions). Also they have prime rib appetizers that are very good.

  • Andie302

    Rave: Dad is only 3.8 lbs from his initial goal weight and I look for him to keep losing right past that. He’s down a total of nearly 75lbs.
    Rant: Hip still bothering me after chiro visit yesterday. It’s not pain as much as annoyance, but I can’t catch yoga today like I was hoping.

  • Rave: Nats game tonight!
    Rave: Planning travel and other adventures. If I want to do it, now’s the time to do it.
    Rant: Nothing worth wearing on my sleeve.

  • skj84

    Rave: Can I have that cheese in the picture? Reminds me that outdoor concerts are about to get started.
    Rave: Ended up ordering a gown for the black tie wedding i’m attending next month. It looks lovely, but is a bit too big in the waist. I’m not sure if I want to to take it in, or let it be, it fits everywhere else. I think it would look a bit better if I had shapewear underneath. Any suggestions for non constricting shapers? I want to smooth things, but I also want to be able to eat.
    Rant: On the verge of burning myself out. Too many side hustles, on top of my regular job. My anxiety level has ramped back up, I was a bundle of nerves yesterday.

  • I Dont Get It

    Rant: Some guy on TV this morning squawking about the importance of making your bed to start the day. Hey buddy, some of us work from our beds!
    Rave: DC in springtime! Is there any place lovelier?

    • I think I gave up making my bad in the late 70s (unless I had a Big Date) or there were visitors expected who might wander by. Of all household chores that seems the least worthy.

      • And I feel like my day hasn’t officially started until the bed is made. But I don’t think it’s all that important, it’s just one of my personal quirks.

      • I Dont Get It

        Well I no longer make my bed in anticipation of company—that ship has sailed regretfully. The only time I consistently make my bed is before I leave for a flight. In case something bad happens, I don’t want IDGI Sr later to enter my house, see my unmade bed and say something like “Well he was askin’ for it.”

    • Don’t you both have cats? I can’t stand the idea of paws that have been in the litterbox being on my pillow. That’s the only reason I care about bed-making.
      Well, that, and it’s just nice to slide between nice smooth sheets…

  • Rant: walked out of my house late this morning and walked right into a spider’s web. ack.
    Rave: a woman on the metro complimented my perfume. made me feel better after the spider scare. thanks, nice woman!. (for the record, it was a le labo perfume I’m trying out)

    • If anyone on Metro can smell your perfume you are annoying lots of people. Take it with you and splosh it on once you get out of a confined space.

    • No one should be able to smell your perfume unless you are embracing them. Please, for those of us who are chemically sensitive, stop wearing it. If you really must, then just wear a tiny (appropriate) amount. And I agree with victoria…don’t wear it in places where other people cannot get away from it (you).

      • maxwell smart

        To be fair, if the metro is anything like the bus lately, you are basically embracing the person/persons next to you.

      • I was on a crowded Amtrak train once when a woman reeking of perfume sat next to me. If I moved, it would be clear that I was moving to avoid her, but since she was of a different ethnic group, I wrestled over what to do – Should I explain her I was moving because she stank and not because of her “race?”
        I wound up doing nothing and spending the rest of the trip and all night with a migraine.

        • Accountering

          I would have moved – I think the explanation would have been more offensive and weird than just moving.

        • maxwell smart

          I would have moved, and if by chance the person asked, you could have easily said – Oh I’m heading to the cafe car for a while.

          • I moved during a movie from next to a couple of a different race than me. I moved because 1) the guys serious cologne was giving me a headaches, and 2) his apple watch kept lighting up in the corner of my eye. I made the move following a bathroom trip, which I hoped was more subtle. But I heard the woman ask they guy, “Did you do something?” I wrestled the rest of the movie whether to say something after, because it felt awkward. But anything I said would be super awkward.

      • yeah, I was sitting next to her, and Id sprayed myself once before leaving house/getting on train. If that’s not an “appropriate” amount, I’m not sure what is…

        • If you’re honestly asking what an “appropriate” amount of perfume is, the answer is:

          In a confined space where other people can’t escape you, like a subway, train, airplane, meeting room, dinner party, restaurant meal etc. – zero.

          For any place where people can move away and avoid you – a cocktail party, bar etc. knock yourself out.

        • Ledroit – I think that’s fine, and I’m a sensitive perfume person. It’s the people who douse themselves that are ridiculous. But of course you will lightly smell someone sitting right next to you.

          • The problem is that people who use perfume/cologne become insensitive to it and they don’t know how much they are putting on because they can no longer smell it.

            Is “one spray” appropriate? To me, one spray in the air and then walking through it might not be too much. But one spray directly on your person? Yep…almost always too much for at least the next 2 hours.

            I once worked with a guy who wore so much cologne that you could literally follow the path he took through the cubicle farm to find him. I used to get a massive headache every time he came on the floor!

          • I hate heavy scents just as much as the next person, but do people really think that literally “one spray” of perfume is any worse than someone’s shampoo or body wash sent? Or laundry detergent scent? This is a ridiculous conversation to be having, imo, and given all the times we’ve had it before I just don’t understand why LT is being reamed out over something she was happy about this morning.

          • Agree–most of these comments seem to be conflating the concepts of a light scent and heavy application of perfume/cologne.

          • No one is “reaming out” LT. Seriously. Read the comments. They are measured, logical and objective. No genuine conversation is “ridiculous.”

          • maxwell smart

            Agreed @FridayGirl. I’d rather have someone slightly over-do it on cologne or perfume (as someone who generally holds their breath and runs through the department store in the perfume section… why is it always at the front door!) than someone’s b.o.

          • “reeking” and “stank” are not “objective” words. Those are subjective judgments, and not even “measured” ones.

          • “Reeking and stank” are not objective words. OK – let’s go with that. Are you saying that individuals are not allowed to form their own opinions? Or use their own words to describe the smells that they as individuals experience?

          • victoria – i do often appreciate your comments (especially re: cats!) but i think the issue here may be that you gave your opinion… a couple times… and other people gave theirs, but you’ve now perpetuated this conversation with 9 separate comments (by my count). It really seems like we should ALL just stop while we’re ahead here and move on.

          • @victoria, sure, have an opinion. Just recognize it as such, and don’t claim that your opinion is “measured, logical and objective” (your words about your opinion).

    • Awww, I’ll admit I had a similar initial reaction–but must we tear someone down about something they were feeling good about? Perhaps a softer tone, at least?

      • No one is “tearing” anyone down. These were plain, direct comments, not screeds, not personal attacks, not harsh “tones.” Relax. Choose to spend your outrage on genuine offenses.

      • Well, I can see my rave has caused concern among some of our more allergic brethren.

        I will go back to my un-bathed, un perfumed self – in the heat of a DC summer, that should surely inspire affection from my metro seat mates.

        • No one is objecting to you bathing. Calm down.

          • I’m pretty calm, thanksomuch.

          • Just like someone may not how much perfume they are wearing may be offensive to some folks you may not know how your tone comes across. Tigah, it feels good to be complimented and I like your rave:) I am super sensitive and have moved due to people but I’m not going to go after YOU. I just solve the problem for myself…life is too short!

        • Sorry, I get testy when other people don’t realize (in some cases don’t care) that something they think is nice can ruin an entire day for me. Honestly, even B.O. is preferable to me. It is a natural instead of chemical smell. I don’t actually have allergies to anything that grows outside so I don’t take any allergy medicine and I don’t think it would help. The chemical smell of things really does give me horrible headaches. And I guess that when I smell chemicals, others must smell flowers or something pleasant.

          I also cannot imagine why anyone would believe the marketing hype that the smell of a clean human being is not pleasant enough and that you should smell like a cart full of flowers. If you want to smell like cinnamon buns, I’d be okay with that!

          But, yeah. Bathing is fine.

          • The ironic thing about this entire exchange is that I actually use unscented shampoo/conditioner and soap from TJs… I do feel for you that chemicals produce such strong reactions, @navyyard.

          • There is nothing “ironic” here. No one cares about anyone’s “products” – scented- organic- holistic – whatever – except that no one wants to be forced to smell them in a confined environment.

    • Thank you Victoria and navyyard – from another anonymous allergy-prone person – people always try to make me feel like I’m the only one!

    • For what it’s worth… I have a chemical sensitivity, but it’s pretty rare that I encounter someone whose perfume/cologne is so strong that it actually bothers me.
      Far more problematic for me are scented air fresheners, walking through the detergent aisle, walking through the candle aisle, etc.

    • Emmaleigh504

      It’s always nice to get a compliment. I hope you were able to keep that good feeling.

      • Thanks, Emma Leigh – I did have a nice exchange with the woman and we wished each other a good day.

    • HaileUnlikely

      Serious question for the allergy crowd: do perfumes/colognes/aftershaves made with only natural ingredients (e.g., alcohol, witch hazel, and essential oils) bother you? (Looking for actual information here, not opinions about what you think is “appropriate.”)

      • HaileUnlikely

        p.s. I did not word my question quite as clearly as I had intended to. By “bother” I meant “cause you to experience physical symptoms.” I understand that disliking a scent can be construed as being bothered by it, that isn’t what I meant, though. (My bad for not being clear there.)

      • This is a good question that I’ve honestly never thought about. There’s definitely a difference between smells that annoy me and smells that actually cause me to burst into an allergy attack, but I’m not sure what’s been in those scents since they’re generally a few people away from me. I have a hunch that it’s a particular allergen in certain colognes and perfumes that causes me to get watery-eyed and sniffly. (Funny enough, I have the same reaction to people who smoke — it literally makes my sinuses go haywire.) I might not like some perfumes but not all scents cause a physical reaction.

        • TL;DR – I have a strong hunch that everyone’s allergy tipping point will be different and even natural ingredient allergies might be different from person to person.

        • HaileUnlikely

          The reason I ask is that I am bothered by lots of chemical smells including most commercially available aftershaves, so I make my own, using alcohol, witch hazel, and a few drops of various essential oils, and they do not trigger my allergies at all. I’ve also prepared some as gifts for people. I do not use them often (especially now that I have a beard – use aftershave less now), but in all of the times that I have, I have gotten exactly zero complaints (and a fair number of compliments).

      • It’s not the “allergy crowd.” It is just recognizing that we all get smashed together every day in transit, working, etc. and figuring out how to be conscientious, kind and observant.

        • HaileUnlikely

          I stipulate that the broader issues of conscientiousness and kindness are important but declare them outside the scope of my question. My question is specifically for the allergy sufferers among us (of which I am one).

  • Rave: Connected with littlest bro’s gf, and looking forward to helping her scheme to make his “birthday month” special! Also, I really like her, I’m glad that she and bro are together!
    Rant: Tree pollen is conspiring to kill me! It looks and smells and feels lovely outside, but my eyes hurt so bad and I keep violently sneezing, despite Zyrtec.
    Rant-ish: Dental appointment tomorrow morning – haven’t been to the dentist in (mumble mumble mumble), and am really afraid to go. But I have decent dental insurance and the forethought to put several thousand dollars in my HSA, so paying upfront (and being reimbursed by insurance later) isn’t as scary of a thought. Oh god I’m such a coward, I don’t want to go!
    Rave: Since I happen to have all the ingredients, I’m going to make me some matzoh brei tonight! (And bacon, sorry – I’m only half Jewish and even then, the family hasn’t kept kosher for the past three generations!)

    • Confession time. I was so afraid of the dentist that I did not go from the time I was 18 until I was 33. 15 years. Yep. Luckily for me, I only had a few cavities after all those years, but it made me realize how absolutely ridiculous I was for not going all those years. If I can do it, you can do it!

      • Andie302

        Same here – I had about a 5 year gap. I felt lucky that there were only a few things here and there after returning, and it didn’t end up being as bad I thought. (Mine wasn’t related so much to fear as laziness/lack of dental coverage/not wanting to bother to find someone new.)

        • Thanks, folks! for me some of the gap is that I’m terrified but also some of it was I had no or really crappy dental insurance, and part of it was laziness too in finding a new provider. I’m still really scared about that part – like, what if he’s a jerk and makes snarky comments? What if he tries to upsell me on crap I don’t want/need? Etc etc etc…. But I need to just grin and get it over with, especially since my neurologist is pretty sure I have TMJ and that getting a mouth guard made / working on my jaw would very much help to lessen my migraine issues….

          • I’m the most dental-phobic person you can find. (A childhood dentist who drilled and filled every one of my teeth with absolutely no Novocaine or nitrous or anything will do that!) I can highly recommend Dr. Pollowitz at Washington Center for Cosmetic Dentistry.

            Yes, the expense sucks (for any dental care) but the alternative is worse.

      • HaileUnlikely

        Nearly same here, though in my case, no fear, just lack of insurance (and money more generally) from 18 until about 25, by which time inertia (and perhaps a wee bit of trepidation) had set in.

      • Yeah, me too. I finally started seeing a “sedation dentist” several years ago, and that’s worked for me. It’s not all sedation, but calm, gentle handling, plus a range of options from nitrous oxide through full-on general anesthesia. They take my anxiety seriously and work with me to find the most comfortable approach to everything from cleanings to root canals.

    • Middle Sis and I surprised Baby Sis on her birthday last week and she loved it! I got a gift card from her favorite store and signed the birthday card during my visit a few weeks ago. Hid the stuff at our Mom’s house so that it was there for Middle Sis to sign and deliver during spring break. Since we’re not a big gift giving family this was a was a big deal. Hope you are successful, too!

    • Yeah, get it taken care of now. Regular dental checkups are much more pleasant than occasional oral surgeries. Also warn the dentist if you are violently sneezing – that could be problematic with a mouth full of dental tools.

      • oh lord, that’s a frightening thought! I think I’m just gonna pop several Benadryls, cut down on the sneezing and keep me calm and sleepy, right?

        • I think of it as a practical thought rather than a frightening thought. I’m sure dentists in this area see this all the time though, so they probably know how to manage it.

    • That One Guy

      I feel your allergy woes. I feel like my eye are super puffy from all the rubbing. Spring is trying to make me go blind. Ha.

    • Congratulations on making it to the dentist! I didn’t go from the time I was 18 to about 28, and I have had to get $$$ work done due to lack of maintenance and poor dental hygiene for a portion of that time. As an already anxious person the longer I didn’t go the worse my anxiety got–I got to the point where I was having dreams about going to the dentist and when I’d try to call I’d burst into tears and couldn’t make myself even complete the phone call. Finally, my angel of a partner was encouraging in a really gentle way and called a couple of places to ask questions about scheduling an appointment and was really straightforward with the receptionist: “my partner has severe dental anxiety and hasn’t been to the dentist in many years and wants to get regular care again,” etc etc. Washington Center for Dentistry was extremely welcoming and affirming, set me up with a really gentle hygienist, and I absolutely love my dentist, Dr. Fordjour. Even though my mouth was in pretty bad shape, they were really affirming that I was getting back into care and there was absolutely no judgment. They’re expensive, but straightforward about cost, especially the dentist, helping me figure out what was super important to happen right now and what could wait a few months.

    • I finally sucked it up and got prescription allergy meds, and omg it’s a whole new world! I didn’t even need to go to the Dr, just talked to the nurse on the phone. I got almost immediate relief.

  • Rant: hot water is out again in my unit and once again the board/management company is unresponsive and unprofessional despite at least 5 other residents reporting the same problem. Each fix ends up causing more problems.

    Rave: it’s not winter this time so lukewarm showers aren’t dreadful

    • The hot water tank may be dying. If they keep replacing coils and elements, and the problem persists, they should look into replacing it.

  • rave: boyfriend and I are moving in together!
    rant: it is much harder to find a place than I had anticipated. We’d really like to avoid living in a big apartment building (for multiple reasons) and are open to english basements, but are still having trouble finding a place that we both like and can afford.

  • Question: Does anyone have experience converting a rowhome basement into a space that is acceptable and legal for an au pair to live in? Specifically, do you recommend any third party who is well-versed in, say, putting up temporary walls or making the appropriate adjustments to basement windows?

    • If a basement is not a totally separate unit with a C of O, it is essentially just another room in your home that you can live in or rent out with no restrictions. Of course you want to be sure it is safe, with 2 points of egress, one from the sleeping room. That means windows should be big enough to climb through in emergency and if there are window bars, they need to be able to be opened from the inside without a key.

      • Thank you, but I’m still confused. If that’s the case, why bother making something totally separate and getting a certificate of occupancy, if you’re not prevented from renting it out without one?

  • Rave: Walked from The Hamilton to my apt last night with the BF because the weather was so beautiful! I love walking!!
    Rave: Watching BF attempt to skateboard with the kids near Del Frisco’s Grille. He tells me he was once really good at it. Ummm ok lol
    Rave: The outdoor patio at the Willard Cafe.
    Rant: Proper 21 was such a disappointment. 🙁 They were playing very LOUD top 40’s music, I thought I was at a dive bar in Dupont. I’m not an old hag I promise, but I felt like one there. The bartender forgot to put in my order. I was forced to starve for 20 extra minutes. No sorry, nothing. I was planning on hosting a brunch there but now there is no way that’s happening.
    Rave: 1/2 price sushi at the Hamilton.
    Rant: I wish I wasn’t sitting at this desk

  • Rave: went home to St. Louis for a close friend’s surprise birthday party on Saturday. She burst into tears when she saw all of us, and extra tears when she saw me. My new year’s resolution was to work on my friendships, and I’m so glad I prioritized going.
    Rant: The world is a scary place for my family. Despite my interjections and protestations, Sunday night dinner revolved around a racist and fear mongering screed about Islam and Muslim “terrorists” from my father and siblings. I won’t repeat the things that were said here because they’re just too hateful, and it got only marginally better when the conversation turned to “Mexicans crossing the border.” They are all able to move on to discussing baseball without the blink of an eye, while I’m sitting at dinner shell-shocked and furious that no amount of facts or information will change their minds. I felt so glad to come home to my family and community yesterday.
    Rave: Getting to see the Cards play the Nats tonight–my favorite part about April.

    • I love your first rave! That’s really awesome of you.

      • agree with jeslett — good on you! Am trying to get to new York for a friend’s birthday soon for this same reason (but nyc is much easier to get to from here!)

    • Rasputin

      Hello fellow former St. Louisan. I need to remind myself to get back to my people now and again as well, even though they share many of the same opinions as your folks. It’s certainly challenging and often opinions belie the facts. But hey, the Cards! See ya, and probably many other displaced midwesterners, at the game.

    • Just be thankful that 1) you got to move away, and 2) learned how not to think like them. Be glad that you were born with a personality inclined to think for yourself, open to other influences, and that you were able to find other ways of thought. Been there, as have many others.

  • Rave: Home Fires. Saw a repeat of Sunday’s episode last night. I really like the show. Sad that it’s been cancelled.
    Rant: Sinus headaches suck.
    Rant: Can’t get in contact with psychiatrist to discuss issues with meds. Went to regular PCP who was called her but got now response. I can’t get her on the phone either. At my wit’s end about what to do since I can’t see my psychiatrist until the end of the month. My therapist who I saw yesterday said my depression is currently unstable since I am having such a bad reaction to the medication. I’m able to work and go about my business but I am super irritable and my ruminating is driving me nuts.

    • Just starting to watch Home Fires last week – one episode – and liking it very much. BUT – this week, my on-screen guide showed it at XX time, and as I watched I was terribly confused – I knew the last episode was 1940, but this one looked strangely post-war… but, I thought, I am new, maybe there are flashbacks and flashforwards… and maybe this hospital just wasn’t featured in the previous episode….

      It was only at the end that I realized that the onscreen listing was wrong – I’d been watching “Call the Midwife” (which I’d never seen before) and “Homefires” was just coming on. Relieved, but still felt dopey…. and now I am sad to know it’s cancelled.

  • Query: Heading to NYC this weekend, I’ve seen the major sites but haven’t been in a while, suggestions for what to check out? Restaurant recommendations?

    • That One Guy

      There’s a place in Brooklyn called Brooklyn Ball Factory that has this amazing ginger yuzu tea. It’s amazing when iced and so refreshing. Their lunch boxes are also tasty and to eat in their upstairs patio space. I also really like 1 or 8 for food.
      I keep trying to check out Tanoshi Sushi. It looks yummy.

    • I love the Danish food hall that opened at Grand Central Station. It is under the business umbrella of one of the original founders of Noma. Get one of the savory grain porridges and an open faced smorrebrod and enjoy. Also in this weather, a walk on the High Line would be really nice. You could pair it with a visit to the Whitney. This weather is also nice for the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens.

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rant: Micro manager is back to micro managing every little thing
    Rave: Our flex time privileges have been restored.

  • Rave: New tattoo and it’s so so so so awesome! Half of the best part is that it covers up an old, crappy, meaningless tattoo. Now not only is that old tattoo is gone, but an absolutely gorgeous new tattoo with lots of meaning covers it up! I couldn’t be happier!
    Also springtime!

  • Rave: Thanks to everyone who recommended Comcast modems yesterday. I ordered Arris to be delivered same day.
    Rant: It wasn’t there when I got home so either it was stolen or Amazon lied about delivery. Sigh.
    Rave: Wine night with girlfriends tonight.

  • Rant: Boss told us all this morning that he was not to be disturbed. This means awesome for me, since he was going to stay in his office and work, thus leaving ME alone to work. Not happening.
    Rave: WEATHER!!!
    Rave: New Zumba teacher last night, who was a great combo of high energy yet not super complicated. T’was a great workout.
    Rave: Office building getting rid of a really nice desk, which said boss has offered to me! We don’t necessarily have room/a need NOW, but will be good for the future. Will MAKE it fit.

  • Rant: got rejected on my date… I’m playing it over and over in my head going over everything I said, going over how I looked, going over my mannerisms.. and realizing that I’m turning into my own worst enemy over this.. why?!! this is such a horrible feeling
    Rave: finally able to get out of town this weekend.. I need to be away from the hustle and bustle of dc for a bit and clear my head and relax in NC, much different vibe

    • Oh no!!! What happened with the date? That’s sucky. But I guess it’s better to know and be able to move on? (Also, it’s not you.)

    • Accountering

      Try not to over think it – it could be any number of a million things, but just boiled down to he/she wasn’t that into you, and that’s okay!

      • Agreed. I know it’s easy to intellectually understand this, but another thing entirely to emotionally feel okay with it. You’re allowed to feel sad or whatever you’re feeling, but I also encourage you to be kind to yourself about playback/telling yourself the negative narrative.
        Someone once told me something that made it easier to not take these things personally, something like “you may laugh just like their ex or look like their mother” or some other thing that would bother someone, but you have no control over.

    • Stop the playback! Yes, it feels like shit, but remember that “Rejection” simply means that one person (who you don’t even know and is probably a lunatic) happens to want at one particular time for whatever reason someone other than you. Like a mermaid, Marie Antoinette, My Little Pony, Rachel Carson, Margret Thatcher, Mae West, Jo from Little Women, Sally Ride, that girl in sixth grade etc.

      You weren’t rejected. Some asshole missed an opportunity.

    • Agree with the others. It’s not an audition. It doesn’t matter why the other person rejected you. The worst thing you can do is try to be something you’re not for the sake of gaining someone else’s acceptance. Be yourself, and the right person will come along who appreciate you for the wonderful person that you already are : )

    • You were rejected _on_ the actual date? What did your date do/say?
      I echo others on this; try not to overthink it. Often people just aren’t a good fit for each other. I’m not sure there’s much to be gained from a postmortem analysis of the date, unless you think maybe you were presenting a side of you that’s not your best side. (Figuratively speaking, that is — not like a left-profile-vs.-right-profile thing. 😉 )
      Hope you have a relaxing weekend in NC and that it takes your mind off things.

  • Rant: Folks who insist on mispronouncing my last name. Everyone in my family and my hometown pronounces our last name with the accent on the first syllable. Ever since I moved up here from my, folks insist on pronouncing it with the accent on the second syllable even after I correct them. This dude on my job thinks it’s a joke to mispronounce my last name, laughing as he says it which burns me up. I even had one dude somewhere else try to argue with me about how I should pronounce my own last name, telling me that folks in North Carolina pronounce it that way (I don’t know anybody in North Carolina so I don’t know if he was telling the truth or not). I thought that he was nuts.
    Rave: The weather.
    Rant: Got some good news about some blood work I had done.

    • skj84

      What kind of jerk purposly mispronounces another persons name? Be firm with this guy. Even if its the “North Carolina” way to pronounce it, its not how you pronounce it. Insist that he say your name the correct way. Be unrelenting. That is not ok.

    • I Dont Get It

      “Are we in North Carolina?”

  • Rave: Several of my irises are sending up flower stalks!

    • Farragut

      My mind did not immediately think of gardening when you said this, so your rave took a very surrealist turn for me. Glad your flowers are coming along! Allison’s pretty excited about our garden, too! We even got a blueberry plant for one of our outdoor pots.

  • In the category of neither rant nor rave: I need to find a custom glass company or glass/metalwork place to turn an unusual object into a table (think tree stump though that’s not what it is). It is a bit too heavy to bring conveniently to a glass shop for measuring so someone who can come look at it/measure/deliver is preferred. Ideas?

  • Late Day Rant (like I didn’t have enough rants and raves above): Work friends being not-very-nice lately. At first I thought it might be me, but it most definitely is not. No matter what I say, I’m starting to be dismissed or put-down when they’re together, like they feed off each other. It’s not okay. I think it’s time to distance myself and find some new work friends.

    • ugh. I’m going through that too at the moment – mine cycle through moods together. I was the last to join the team, so I’m the odd man out (and sometimes bear the brunt) when my work friends go through a pissy phase. My husband suggested that I shouldn’t want my work friends to be personal friends at work. Then it’ll bother me less.
      Good advice but hard to take!

      • Oh man, I hate that this has happened to both of us but I’m so glad it’s not just me. I spent about 2 weeks before today thinking I was crazy until I finally said “Nope, this isn’t appropriate behavior” today at lunch and just walked away. Your husband sounds like a smart guy :]

      • “My husband suggested that I shouldn’t want my work friends to be personal friends at work.” Honestly, I think it’s easier when people are friendly with each other at work but not actually “friends” — then there’s no dynamic of inclusion/exclusion, interpersonal drama, undermining/backbiting, etc.

    • I would never assume that work colleagues are “friends”. I am very friendly with most of my colleagues but at the end of the day we just get paid to work together and that’s the end of it. I don’t take anything they do or say personally, and I treat them kindly but professionally. It’s unfortunate and annoying when work colleagues are being cliquey amongst themselves (and towards you) but hey, you’re all just paid to be there doing a job; if they’re not being pleasant you just move along and go about your work.

  • Rave: the little monster turned one today! I can’t believe it’s been a year.
    Rave: t-10 days for our move to DC! AHHHHHHH!!!!!

    Rant: both the kiddo and I have nasty colds. can’t wait for warm weather and sun soon!

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