wrong dog
Photo by PoPville flickr user bajidc

“Dear PoPville,

Yesterday I received notice, through my mail slot, that someone had filed a complaint with animal control alleging my (tiny) dog had bit them, and requiring me to present my dog for a health inspection twice, once immediately, and once in six months. Thing is, the dog described is the wrong color and wrong size, and moreover neither I nor the dog were home on the date of the alleged incident.

Anyone have any experience dealing with this? I’m hoping to hear about it before I give animal control a call to sort this out.”

say something
Photo by PoPville flickr user Joe Flood

“Dear PoPville,

I wanted to write to see if anyone had reported seeing a very suspicious person walking near the S Street Dog Park in Dupont on Sunday [09.04.16] night? My boyfriend and I were driving home around 9:15pm, looking for a parking spot and saw a man walking south down the middle of New Hampshire Ave. NW, and when we drove by him, he stared into our car. We saw that he was wearing a mask or had a fully painted face, a black hooded sweatshirt, and he was carrying 1-2 bags in his hands. We circled the block, found a spot, and while walking back to our house saw him again in the same spot, but on the sidewalk. Once inside our apartment, we saw he started walking north on 17th Street so we called the police. They said someone was dispatched, but we’re not sure if anything was resolved.

I was wondering if anyone else saw him? It was pretty terrifying and to add to the strangeness, there were plenty of people walking around that didn’t seem to register this guy. It was bizarre.”

pain two

“Dear PoPville,

I just bought a rowhouse in Petworth that’s in need of some foundation work. Prior to purchase my inspector let me know that the right corner in the basement had some water damage, but nothing that could not be fixed. Over the last couple of weeks, I have received solutions/estimates from two different companies (looking to get two more). Both companies provided very different solutions and thus estimates. Below is a quick summary the problem and the two proposed solutions. Would love to get some thoughts from the PoP community and any recommendations from folks.

Problem: Right side of house settling more than left. Water intrusion in right side corner of basement. Mold in right corner. Cracks in bricks on the right side. Right side pier on porch sinking. (more…)

Photo by PoPville flickr user Lindsey Robinett

“Dear PoPville,

I’m curious if the community might have any input or suggestions on a situation like mine.

I’m completely fed up with my employer’s health insurance plan. Every minor service costs a fortune under the plan and I’m trying to see what options I have under the DC health exchange and if it would be worth it for me to switch to one of those plans instead.

Are there any resources in the District for helping people make informed decisions on their health care plans when they are overwhelmed by and unclear on their options?”

Photo by PoPville flickr user dullshick

“Dear PoPville,

so the other day i went to the dump as i have many times before. they checked my ID like usual. but this time the guy said i cant use it because there is an apartment number on my address. i went to talk to the supervisor and he said because i live in an apartment im not allowed to use the dump. according to the website it is open to all district residents..is this a new thing?”

street math

“Dear PoPville,

I am writing about a personal experience that occurred two weeks ago when I was dining with friends at a restaurant.

I was at dinner with three other people, but because only two people drank alcohol we wanted to review the bill closer to figure out the best way to split the meal. When we reviewed the bill, we noticed three items had been added increasing the total by about $25. We called the waiter over, but before we were able to explain which items were accidentally added our waiter said, “so sorry”, grabbed the bill, and walked away. At that point, it became clear he added the items hoping we would not notice (because he didn’t even wait for us to explain what our question was about the bill before he walked away). We split the bill and decided that since our waiter had tried to inflate his tip we were only tipping 10% each.

A few days later, I got an email from my credit card company with the subject line: “generous tip alert” (thank you Capital One!). The email showed that I had tipped almost 40%. (more…)

Photo by PoPville flickr user Eric P.

“Dear PoPville,

A simple question: how does one actually, practically, protect her/his interests from damage to their home when an adjoining townhouse is being renovated?

I hear people say hire a lawyer, hire a structural engineer, take lots of photos. I would love to know what has been effective, and what kind of cost is associated with this.

What kind of document can a lawyer prepare regarding damage that has happened AND *potential* damage that might still happen? How much does that cost? Have people done this and used the agreement to get damage repaired?

Aren’t structural engineers expensive to have come out ? How much does that run – my assumption is $1000 or more? Do you need an engineer and a lawyer?

A home is being renovated on our block by a developer. Beginning about a month ago, there has been full demo on the interior and one whole exterior brick wall had to come down and will be rebuilt. I think there has been some basement excavation, too. I’m a few doors down, but my neighbor who lives next door to the renovation-in-process has already had some damage occur to their home from the demolition work and is afraid of what might happen in the months ahead. The developer has acknowledged the damage to-date and promised to make my neighbor whole, but there is nothing in writing. The neighbor has taken photos of the damage, but doesn’t necessarily have photos of “before,” I am not sure, but I can see where a person wouldn’t think to take the first photo until something has already happened.

How should a person protect their interest in what is likely their largest asset? I don’t know my neighbor’s financial situation, but let’s assume if one is retired and has to be careful with expenses — is it possible to protect one’s self in this situation without having to spend significant money? How does this all work in real life — beyond just saying “hire a lawyer.”


“Dear PoPville,

This car had been sitting behind my house clearly a abandon for months. As you can tell by the stack of tickets, the city clearly knows that it’s here. So when do they tow it? I assume there’s a good chance it’s stolen and someone is looking for it.

Also, this dog.”

dog hydrant

Ed. Note: Last time we saw the greatest dog in the world we learned:

This is Rex, the DC Dog Wizard’s pup, demonstrating the “place” command. Rex is a pretty agile dude and Scott is a pretty awesome trainer.”

Photo removed per request

“Dear PoPville,

I’m writing to see if anyone else has witnessed a twenty something Caucasian homeless man manhandling/abusing his pet cat. I’ve seen him twice on K Street, NW around 16th & 17th Streets. The first time he was walking with the cat strapped to his backpack and the 2nd time he was sitting on the sidewalk picking the cat up by its back skin and flinging it around. The cat had no food or water. He’s got a harness and leash on the cat so there’s no escaping. When I saw the man manhandling the cat I reported the incident to animal control, but am afraid that there’s nothing they can do without photo/video evidence. The cat just just seemed so helpless. Hoping to get the word out so people can be on the lookout.”


“Dear PoPville,

Last November, I saw a posting on your blog for new townhome style condos in Brookland being developed by Lock7. Shortly after, I took a trip to the Brooks Row construction site and visited Urban Pace’s sales office. By the end of the month, I had a ratified contract. One of the conditions was for my then-current condo to be under contract to be sold by Feb. 15th (this was later pushed back to March 30th).

At the time, I was told construction would be completed “late March/early April,” which was consistent with your blog post: “…scheduled to deliver early next spring.” The major snow storms we had pushed completion until “mid-May.” On April 17th, they hosted an open house for only one of the 22 units. That day, purchasers were still being told the project would be completed by “mid-May,” despite the fact that even the home that was “finished” was in reality very far off from being done. Two days later, my realtor told me he heard form Urban Pace and construction was then pushed back to “early June.”

On May 20, after weeks of privately expressing concerns about the construction progress with my realtor, I finally emailed Urban Pace looking for answers as to why every time I went to the site it appeared as though nothing was being accomplished. In that email, I explained to Urban Pace that I had to be out of my condo (it was under contract) by June 30. They then blamed the record amounts of rain we received as an excuse. Early that month, my realtor and I toured my unit. At that time the target for completion was “end of July/early August.”

On July 1, I moved into a temporary apartment with my dog (Lock7 is subsidizing less than a quarter of the rent costs). That weekend, frustrated with the move and the living situation, I sent another email to Urban Pace. On July 5, the response was, “With regards to construction Lock 7 told me today it would be complete end of the month, potentially early August. We need C of O after that, so settlements hopefully should take place in August once we have the final permits.” (more…)