82°Partly Cloudy

Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

by Prince Of Petworth January 17, 2017 at 9:09 am 157 Comments

dc_neighborhood_news
Photo by PoPville flickr user Victoria Pickering

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.

Follow PoPville on Facebook here on Twitter here, and on Instagram here.  You can also sign up for daily email summaries here.  Please email tips and questions to [email protected]

  • mtpresident

    Query: Anyone have an electrician they’d recommend? We have cannister lights in our basement that are apparently burning through lightbulbs like nobody’s business.
    Rant: Up half the night coughing last night. Ugh.
    Rave: Really lovely weekend. Hung out with a new family in the neighborhood, and looking forward to doing so again soon.
    Random: Just learned that one of the Penguins grew up in my home town. But we were several years away from overlapping in school. That tidbit made me feel old.

    • HaileUnlikely

      In general, I recommend Meyer Electric. Lots of people here recommend Wilcox. I have found Wilcox’s work acceptable but extraordinarily expensive. Meyer is a smaller family business, plenty competent, and not exorbitantly expensive (for an electrician). That said, if you know how to do any basic electrical stuff safely, I would caution that hiring an electrician to troubleshoot a mysterious problem can get goofy expensive in a hurry without necessarily producing any helpful results (I have learned this the hard way, with expensive Wilcox chasing a problem around all day and not finding it [found it myself later!]).
      .
      A few issues that can make can lights burn through lightbulbs real fast, in no particular order:
      .
      1.) too much vibration in the structure to which they’re mounted. An electrician won’t be able to make the joists between the basement ceiling and first floor floor vibrate less. If the existing bulbs are incandescents or CFLs, try replacing them with LEDs or CFLs rate for “rough service” – the vibration of the joists should be less of a problem with these.
      .
      2.) Is there insulation in the cavity between the basement ceiling and the floor above? If so, is the insulation piled on top of the canisters? If so, either dig out the insulation around them, or make sure you are using can lights that are rated “IC” (insulation contact). Otherwise they may get too hot, which shortens the life of the bulb. Also, is the bulb exposed on the ceiling side or is it enclosed by glass? If enclosed, make sure you aren’t using bulbs that say “not for use in enclosed fixtures.” If they are completely enclosed and the bulbs aren’t made for that, they’ll overheat and wear out sooner.
      .
      3.) There may be a loose connection with the neutral (usually white) wire somewhere on the circuit. If you know how to do this safely, after turning off the power at the breaker, check the neutral connections at each light and at the switches. If a neutral is loose somewhere, the voltage can get wacky, which is also bad for the lights.

      • mtpresident

        Interesting point on vibration. Mtpkiddo has a penchant for jumping and stomping loudly–seriously, I can’t figure out how a <35 pound body can create so much noise. I wonder if that's the issue.

        • HaileUnlikely

          My cats weighs just under 7 pounds each and it is unbelievable how much noise the two of them make – you’d think there were a couple of horses galloping around!

    • kgw

      We were having the same light bulb problem and just replaced all of our CFLs with LEDs. We hired Michael and Sons for the work, and they did fine.

      • mtpresident

        Dumb question here–you hired electricians for changing lightbulbs? Or they diagnosed the problem and it was that simple of a solution?

        • Pleasanter

          I’m guessing they changed to LED fixtures

        • houseintherear

          Many old fixtures won’t allow for LEDs, so if you want to upgrade to newer bulbs you have to replace the fixture. Perhaps that’s what they meant… I’m dealing with that currently at my old fart of a house.

          • textdoc

            “Many old fixtures won’t allow for LEDs” — Wait, what? I had assumed (perhaps wrongly?) that as long as the bulb fit into the light socket (and was rated for the applicable conditions — e.g., enclosed fixture, exposed to moisture), it was OK. No?

          • Anonymous

            Ditto what textdoc said. What kind of fixture won’t allow for LEDs?

          • houseintherear

            I had the same assumption and blew out two old (crappy) light fixtures earlier this year. I’d assume any newer fixtures are fit for either type.

          • Quotia Zelda

            Oh, maybe that’s why the ancient light fixture in the upstairs hall stopped working!

        • mtpresident

          Ah, gotcha. I misunderstood from above and thought it was just a matter of changing lightbulbs. But perhaps it just depends on the fixtures as you note. Good to know. Perhaps we’ll look into lightbulbs rated for “rough service” as suggested by Haile above and see if that helps–and then go from there if not.

          • HaileUnlikely

            p.s. In case my lack of punctuation caused confusion, if you are using CFLs or incandescents, look for bulbs rated for rough service. If you are using LEDs, they do not have to be rated rough service. If there is such a thing as a rough service LED bulb, I am not aware of it.

          • mtpresident

            I think I followed correctly. Our tenants are using incandescents, so we’ll look for “rough service” rated ones to see if that helps before trying LEDs. I’m guessing the fixtures are several decades old, so I doubt they’ll work with LEDs if that is likely to be a problem.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Got it. Good luck. Since you’re using incandescents, also make sure the wattage of the bulb is not greater than the maximum allowed for the fixture. I haven’t bought an incandescent for anything but my oven light in about 10 years so I forget about that sometimes. Some fixtures may only be rated for a 40W or 60W bulb. You’ll never exceed that with a CFL or LED, but it’s easy to accidentally exceed that with an incandescent.

          • mtpresident

            Dumb question here–I’ve always replaced bulbs with another of the same wattage, using the listed wattage on the old bulb as a guide. But it’s possible these (or previous) tenants didn’t. Is there a way to tell on the fixture itself? Just in case that’s the issue?

          • HaileUnlikely

            Fixtures usually (I think always) come with a label that states the maximum wattage. However, fixtures get old, and labels may fall off over time. A previous owner may have even peeled off the label. In any event, the vast majority of residential light fixtures have a maximum of 60W per bulb. If you can’t find a label or other specific indication of the maximum wattage, I’d assume 60W is safe but wouldn’t go higher than that.

          • mtpresident

            Excellent, thank you.

          • If your issue is lights burning out a lot, you will continue having that problem for as long as you continue to install incandescents. They’re built to fail. Additionally, they use up far more energy than CFLs or LEDs. Now, it’s certainly possible that the fixtures themselves have issues, in which case you will need an electrician. But before doing that (and DEFINITELY before buying more incandescents!!) I would buy a few LEDs and try them out. With the discounted prices in local stores (such as Old School Hardware) the cost is likely competitive anyway. Figure out what kind of a bulb you have (probably a BR40 or a PAR38, something like that) and get an LED of the same type, with a color temperature of 2700K or 3000K (warm light).
            .
            Sorry, this is a lot of information. But don’t buy incandescents! Ugh.

          • mtpresident

            Lighting Engineer–others have noted that older fixtures won’t support LEDs, so I’m not sure that switching to that type of bulb will solve the problem–unless you disagree with that characterization? Or do you have a sense for how old the fixtures would have to be for that to be a problem?
            .
            FWIW, I don’t buy incandescents, but I also don’t tell my tenants what type of bulb they have to buy other than suggesting they use something compatible with the fixture. I’m just trying to solve a problem that they’ve mentioned, which hasn’t previously been an issue–suggesting that either the fixtures are going or something else has changed (such as the increased vibration from my preschooler bouncing and jumping as though her life depended on it–which perhaps it does). But thank you for your thoughts.

          • Anonymous

            mtpresident, others have noted that but none has explained how that could be. I can’t think of any electrical reason why any fixture that can hold an incandescent bulb wouldn’t work with a CFL or LED bulb. Fixtures can deteriorate and go bad and perhaps a failing fixture affects different kinds of bulbs differently. But I would not assume that “some old fixtures don’t support LEDs” is a valid statement unless someone can explain it further. I’ve found nothing to back it up.
            .
            As for your particular problem, do you know what kind of bulbs your tenants are using? If they’re not using LEDs then maybe you could just buy some yourself to test out whether they are also problematic. If they are, then maybe buy them some incandescants to see if those are problematic.

          • HaileUnlikely

            I don’t get the “old fixtures don’t support LEDs” thing either, though I replaced every single light fixture in my house myself when I first bought it, so this admittedly is not an issue that I’ve encountered.
            .
            Some old *dimmers* were not compatible with many of the first-generation LED bulbs that hit the stores in 2012-2013, and for a while people were freaking out and buying special “LED-compatible” dimmers, though now a lot of the newer LED bulbs work fine with old dimmers (except the ones labeled “non-dimmable,” obviously).

          • HaileUnlikely

            I’d also note that if a fixture is really old, it is possible that the wire connections have begun to corrode (or just loosen), and if that is the case, it may experience more fluctuations in voltage than a new fixture with new tight connections, and LEDs are more sensitive to little fluctuations in voltage than incandescents and CFLs are. (Now that I think about it, some of the connections were significantly corroded on the ~40-year-old fixtures that I swapped out in my house, especially in high-moisture areas like the bathroom, basement, and exterior lights). I guess that could at least theoretically be a problem associated with using LEDs in zillion-year-old light fixtures. I’m not aware of any fundamental compatibility issue of LEDs with older light fixtures, though.

          • Anonymous

            Haile, I thought of that too, but in my mind that’s a “fixture is failing” problem rather than a “fixture doesn’t support LEDs” problem. Still a good point for people to be aware of.

          • mtpresident

            Excellent, thank you for the additional thoughts. My tenants are using incandescent bulbs. We originally thought they might be using CFLs that aren’t compatible with being installed bulb-side-down since we’ve come across that issue in the past, but were flummoxed when we realized it was an issue with incandescennts. I’m game for having them try out LED and/or “rough service” CFLs–perhaps some of each–to see whether that fixes the issue. And then if not, we can try the electrician route.

          • Lighting engineer

            Thanks for the clarification, I missed that the tenants are generally responsible for purchasing the lights. It’s probably just an issue of incandescents being fragile – filaments don’t generally last long, and vibrations would accelerate the tendency to break. LEDs don’t really have moving parts that would have that issue. I think Haile’s advice is very sound. If you still continue to have issues, an electrician would be the way to go, but try just relamping first.

    • wdc

      We have the same problem with our basement lights. Even LEDs only last a year. Traditional incandescents were burning out within a month or two.
      Interesting reply, Haile, thanks!

  • dcd

    Rant/Rave?: My New Year’s resolution to contribute to the public discourse by avoiding pettiness have gone pretty well.
    Rant/Rave?: Those efforts are sabotaged by the following Facebook post my wife shared with me (from one of her high school friends, though I’m sure it didn’t originate with him): “All that ‘45th President’ merchandise Trump is selling? If Obama resigned on Wednesday, it would all be worthless.” Words can’t express how much I love this idea.
    Rant: Apparently, someone in his feed actually replied (I’m paraphrasing), “This would amount to a legalized coup! I can’t support it!” That kind of stupid is the reason we’re in this mess.

    • IDontGetIt

      Yeah I saw that too. Doesn’t Joe Biden deserve to be president for a couple of days!

      • dcd

        I think so!

        • Blithe

          +1 :-)

  • skj84

    Rave: Finally found a comforter I love on Macy’s website. The pattern is just a bit kitchy, but it fits my personality. Bonus, it arrived yesterday, despite the tracker showing an arrival date of the 24th. Now I’m focused on the other elements of my design plan. I want a rug, curtains, and to put up wall decals. Down the road I’m hoping to find a new dresser and a chair.
    Rave: Participated in PYP Self Defense class at DC Brau on Sunday. In my years of living in the DC area, i’ve never taken a self defense class before, it seems like nows the time. Plus the all the proceeds went to Planned Parenthood. The class kicked my butt, I have bruising on my knuckles to show for it.
    Rave:Taking the self defense class inspired me to sign up for ClassPass. That and the sweet trial deal that popped up on my Facebook feed. Anyway I’m super psyched to give it a shot, I still plan on using my regular gym to work out, and the classes to supplement. I’m hoping the classes will motivate me to work out more. And I can try new fitness classes I’ve never considered before.

    • J

      That class sounds awesome. Is it a regular thing?

      I highly recommend taking Flywheel on Classpass!

      • skj84

        It was a one time event, though I think they may do another down the road. However 202strong, which was the studio PYP partnered with offers self defense classes regularrly. They were also part of the reason I signed up for Classpass, I was already planning on taking classes with them, and once I saw they were part of Classpass it was a done deal.

        • J

          I’ll check them out – thanks!!

      • MPinDC

        DC Impact also offers self-defense workshops – highly recommend!

    • anonymous

      Not self defense, but I’ve been loving the classes at Elevate Interval Fitness. Still undecided how I feel about cycling/spin in general, but have also liked the Scuplt DC classes for when I want a workout but don’t want to think about anything

      • rachel

        plus a million to elevate. best (and most fun) workout in DC. and I think they are on class pass if you are a member of that and wanted to try it out.

  • artemis

    Rave: Yesterday’s funeral was lovely. I think it helped to come together with friends and family and honor my friend’s passing. I always say that funerals are for the living, not the deceased. We need the mourning rituals as part of our grief process.
    Rant: still so sad: for my friend’s family, his friends, me. But mostly for him. The way he took his life just indicates that he was in such pain. I just try to keep reminding myself that he’s finally at peace.
    Rant: Mental health services in this country. We have so many wholes in services, and we have a Congress that is actively trying to dismantle health care coverage for millions of Americans.
    Rave: Time planned with good friends this week. I need community. This is such a period of personal and public loss.

  • Anonamom

    Rant: Over-dd it at the gym this weekend and now walking with a limp due to a super sore calf muscle.
    Rave: Took the girls with me and they both had a blast climbing the rock wall. I am super impressed by their fearlessness (please note that I chickened out of climbing said rock wall).
    Rant: Tried a recipe for buttermilk biscuits and it was an absolute and total failure. Mile High Biscuits? How about Hockey Pucks. I think I should stick to cinnamon rolls.

  • J

    Rave: All the self-care I have planned for this week
    Rant: World events inspiring the need for the self-care.
    Question: My brother’s wife and their three kids (ages 5 and 2.5) are visiting from overseas this summer. We were planning to borrow a family friend’s house at Lake Anna but that didn’t work out. Any suggestions for a similar place in VA, MD, or maybe even PA? I’m going to suggest Wintergreen but would love other options.

    • Hookdntx

      RE Question: If you are looking for water access+ cabin things, you should check out either Deep Creek Lake, Elk Neck or Cunningham Falls state parks in MD, they have rentable cabins with water access for a pretty low cost.

      • J

        Thanks!

    • ymous

      If you will be renting anyway, you could always rent another house at Lake Anna.

      • J

        Thanks – Lake Anna isn’t the best location (we have people coming in from all over the place, long story) but the free housing tipped in it’s favor for our original plan. I’ll look into others though!

    • Anonymous

      Tons of houses on the various areas of MD/VA on the Chesapeake that have private docks, pools, etc. Get on VRBO and AirBnB, lots of options. You can filter listings based on “waterfront”

    • jim_ed

      I’d recommend Lake Gaston, on the VA/NC border. Similar to Lake Anna in size and fully furnished houses, but cheaper. I’ve rented off vrbo.com there before and we loved it.

      • wdc

        We had a great time on Lake Gaston. Massive house with pool and all the amenities. But there’s nothing much else to do in the area where we were, so this is an option only if you like cooking/ boating/ swimming/ lounging.

  • Rave: everything is still coming up Jeslett. Even the less than pleasant stuff, because I’ve been able to handle it with maturity and clarity.
    Rant: But seriously, when you ask me out and I say no, I don’t need a reason and I certainly don’t need a reason that you approve of. I learned a lot about that friend in that interaction and I’m not sure we’re going to be friends anymore.
    Rave: I’m making strides in my goal to get better at winged eyeliner.
    Rave: Went to Mezcalero Cocina Mexicana (new E Sol) last night and it was packed and service was slow, but it was fantastic and I’m not about to hold anything against them this early. So happy they’re back!

    • Rant: my mom forwarded this post article to my sister and I: For women, heavy drinking has been normalized. That’s dangerous.
      I wonder if she wants to schedule a conference call. She did that once with another article she sent. Thanks mom!

      • mtpresident

        Oh boy. While that may be true, I have a hard time envisioning that it’s an issue of particular concern for either you or your sister. Just a guess.

        • I had to check to see if my sister was on the email at all, because really?? Really my sister?

          • mtpresident

            Lol, I’ll admit I had the same thought on your sister. We’re not in touch much, but that would be a rather dramatic personality change over the years.

      • Andie302

        hahahah I sent my mom a list of things I want to do/accomplish and 2017 and her response was “I don’t see anything on here about giving up drinking.” To which I quickly replied: “I’ll do that if I get pregnant.” She thinks it’s a huge problem. Um…I don’t drink anything 5-6 nights per week mom. I just try to make up for it on that 6th/7th night, duhhhh.

        • mtpresident

          Was it really safe to start down the pregnancy conversational path? That’s the sort of thing my mom would jump on and then ask about periodically. She’s still trying to suss out our plans for whether we’re done or might have a third.

          • Andie302

            ha! She’s actually pretty good about that. I guess she picks her battles?

        • Anonamom

          My mom is also convinced I am an alcoholic. When I was single, I used to get many a virtual-fingerwag message admonishing my behavior. For going out once every two weeks? A happy hour here and there? Really?

          • wdc

            Same. But then, she grew up with alcoholic parents, so she’s really sensitive. Basically, anyone who drinks more than she does might have a problem. And then she passive aggressively tells me about family members who always thought they were “too smart” to have a problem. And reminds me that it’s genetic. And then I have to choose between having another drink, and snapping at her. I drink way more when I’m with her than when I’m alone. Maybe she has a point…

          • FridayGirl

            This makes me feel a lot better, actually. When I go out (which is maybe 2-3 times a month) I always get the “only have ONE DRINK” spiel which is silly. Two is really fine, and more than that I don’t really care to have. It drives me insane.

          • Anonamom

            I also drink way more with my mom than normally. There was one memorable trip to the Cheesecake Factory where I downed three cocktails before my main course arrived… I can see how she might have the perception I drink too much.

        • Cleveland Park runner

          I certainly don’t know how much you drink, and I present this not out of a place of judgment but of information: heavy drinking even once a week can be a problem. HHS defines heavy drinking as 5 or more drinks on the same occasion on 5 or more days in the last 30 day period.

          • textdoc

            +1.

      • skj84

        I do wonder if its a generational thing? Or even regional? DC has a drinking culture for sure, and I go with the tide. This also freaks my mother out, she actually sat down to chat with me at Christmas. I mean, I really don’t drink nearly as much as other people I know, but I definitely drink more than she would like me to? I’ve grappled with it, alcohol does not affect my life and I can go without it. But I like to have a beer or cocktail after work. and mimosas with my brunch. I love happy hour. I felt like I was walking on eggshells while I was at home for Christmas.

      • Planner

        My father used to send articles like that to me and my brothers, always with just the note: “Please read this with an open mind.”
        Also posters, like the one that read “If you drink too much beer you drink too much” which of course my group house hung proudly on the keg refrigerator for several years.

    • Something Like Anonanon

      PLEASE share tips on the winged eyeliner! Every time I’ve tried, I end up looking like I have a black eye. :(

      • i

        i get lots of compliments and learned everything i know from youtube tutorials. get a liquid liner with a foam applicator tip- something that is flexible but offers a bit of resistance. I would not go with waterproof just starting out. line the upper eyelashes first and then do your wing- start small make a tip from the edge of bottom lashes up towards the outer corner of your eyebrow and then triangle it off to your upper lash liner and fill it in. Voila!

      • I got this liner: Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum
        And I just keep playing trying it, taking pictures to see if the angle is right, then trying again the next day. I have deep set eyes and I that’s making the angle thing harder. I need to watch more tutorials.

  • FridayGirl

    Rave: Had a wonderful trip to LA this past weekend.
    Rant: Didn’t want to come back.
    .
    Rave: Feeling better after being out sick from work before my trip.
    Rant: Totally overwhelmed from being out of the office for a whole week unexpectedly. I’m too tired to figure out what to do first so I’ll just slowly move along.
    .
    Rave: Teleworking the rest of the week, thank goodness.
    Unknown: Need to make plans with friends or find a date so I’m not bored out of my mind being home the next five days. But trying to find people who are still around and actually seem interested in doing something is proving to be a bit of a challenge.

    • skj84

      I decided to stay in town this weekend, let me know if you’d want to hang! I’m hoping to hit up places participating in All in Service.

  • LedroitTigah

    Rave: I bought Red Lobster cheesy biscuit mix at Costco this weekend. Plan to make the biscuits on Friday as I make protest posters.
    Rant: This is the week I’ve been dreading. Saw the signs directing traffic for inauguration on the way into work this morning and just hung my head in sadness (and shame, tbh)
    Rave: lots of friends flying in for the women’s march.
    Rave: Rain is in the forecast on Friday.

    • FridayGirl

      I’ve been meaning to try that Red Lobster biscuit mix! Thanks for reminding me!

      • BRP

        it is the absolute best.

        • Blithe

          Yup! It’s awesome! It also just needs cheddar cheese and water — easy things to have on hand for those of us who don’t cook much. Oh, and butter if you want to do the garlic topping.

    • skj84

      I’ve been swinging through feelings of calm and dread. I was doing fine yesterday until I walked through Union Station. They had signs stating the main hall would be closed 18-19th, and for some reason that really set my anxiety off big time. I’m almost at the point of begrudging acceptance, but honestly it doesn’t all feel real yet. I’m going radio silent on Friday, I just don’t think I can handle seeing or hearing the footage from the actual ceremony.

      • artemis

        I’m taking myself off all media on Friday and going to an active bystander training instead. That’s my way of coping.

        • LedroitTigah

          That’s a good idea. I think I’m going to have a poster making party on Friday for friends coming in for the march. I don’t own a tv, which has helped considerably.

        • mtpresident

          Lol, I’ll be home with my kids and just invited over another 3yo to give his parents some down time with their newborn. I think two 3yos and a 1yo will keep me plenty busy and occupied that day :)

      • domrep

        I stopped watching the news after election night. My wife is going to watch some of it but I politely asked if she could watch it in another room or something. I’m probably going to spend the next 4 years pretending none of this is happening, instead focusing on family and traveling, etc.

        • skj84

          Agreed. I mean, I want to stay connected to the news, but I also value my mental health. Building up a lot of self care projects to focus on to balance things out. Its going to be a long 4 years.

        • OfftheAvenue

          @domrep: this is exactly what I’ve done. Although, I seem to have shifted my attention pretty much to online and in-store shopping instead, so my bank account is suffering. Hey, I may never watch any news program again. I still read WaPo and NYT, but am very selective about what stories I read. Also deleted all my news/political podcasts, and have found some fun and decent fiction and food-related stuff instead.

      • hiphopanonymous

        I went for a run past the Capitol on Saturday during the Inauturation rehearsal. Stopped just in time to hear the Marine band, followed by, “Introducing President Elect Donald John Trump!” I almost threw up in my mouth a little. On Friday I’m going to stay as far away from the media as possible.

  • SinSA

    Rave: Lunch with a good friend yesterday.
    Rant: First Match date was scheduled (by him) at a specific place/time that I planned my day around. I arrive 10 minutes early. 5 minutes before the date is supposed to take place, he emails me to say that he’s stuck late at work and could we reschedule. I don’t think so, because I’d already made the effort to get to said date place based on what he told me. Pretty certain he knew earlier than 5 minutes before our date was supposed to start, especially if (as he stated) he had been “trying to get out of working late” – he’s 40, ladies…
    Rave: Met up with friends yesterday evening, who cheered me up.
    Rave: Second Match date scheduled for Thursday (with the Zygote) – we’ll see how that one goes.
    Rave: My friends want me to come to NYC this weekend and hang out with them
    Rant: Responsible Me says no because I have to be mindful of saving money. Sometimes I hate Responsible Me.
    ??: Why is it that I’m still getting low-grade fevers every day/feeling tired/still coughing a bit and sore throaty? Do I seriously have to go see another doctor, or is this just how the Ick is, and I have to let it do its thing?

    • LedroitTigah

      Ugh – I’m sorry re your first rant! One of my NY resolutions has been to get back into online dating, but I’m sort of dreading it… Maybe something to do on Friday as I try to ignore the hoopla and news.

      • SinSA

        I’m not sure if you saw the post last week or not but a few of us are going to get together to Wine and Bitch at Vinoteca on February 15th starting at 6pm. You should come! Some people said they’d help look at profiles and stuff, too. (I need all the help I can get, frankly)

        • LedroitTigah

          Ahhh that sounds good! I hadn’t spotted the post, but would definitely like to join. :)

    • textdoc

      Good luck with the date with the Zygote!

      • SinSA

        Thank you!! I am crossing my fingers he’s a good one.

      • LittleBluePenguin

        Wait, the Zygote?! What the hell did I miss?!

    • textdoc

      On your first rant: Five minutes’ notice is exceedingly lame. Doesn’t sound like he has his act together.

    • Anonymous

      “Zygote”, huh? I wonder what he’s calling you?

      • SinSA

        Probably cougar. I don’t care. It’s not like I’m calling him that to his face.

        • SinSA

          Besides, “Anonymous”, I have nicknames for friends/potential dates/etc. that I use here in order to not out them anywhere. :)

        • Something Like Anonanon

          I like to refer to the youngins as a fetus, but zygote is even better!

  • Irving Streete

    Rave: Scored tickets to The Humans on its last day, at the Times Square Ticket Office (which I would have bet a fortune was not going to happen) and, aside from it being a great play, Bill and Hillary strolled in just before curtain to great applause and sat a couple rows down from us. Sometimes New York just delivers beyond expectation.
    .
    Rave: Girlfriend set condition for marriage: I have to learn chords and words to the John Prine/Iris DeMent duet “In Spite of Ourselves.”
    .
    Rant: Goddam near everything else.

    • saf

      Oh man. What a perfect song that is.

  • Question for the Popcrowd: Does anyone have a tax preparer they’d recommend? I became power of attorney for a family member who is mentally incapacitated, and I’m especially looking for someone with experience in understanding how medical deductions work.

    • Anon Spock

      As a base, medical deductions are itemized on schedule A. You can deduct the amount that is more than 10% off your agi (or 7.5% if taxpayer or spouse is 65 or older). You may deduct a wide range if expenses from hospital stays, prescribed meds, etc. A non-exhaustive list can be found in topic 502. There is a link at the bottom to help figure out if your expenses are deductible, but you’ll need a bit of info to use it.

    • Blithe

      I’ve been extremely pleased with Gelman, Rosenberg & Freedman. Their office is in downtown Bethesda.

      • Thanks! There are a lot of nuances in doing this for the first time for someone else, so I’m glad to get help to make sure I’m not setting up for an audit.

  • AJSE

    Does anyone have info on how traffic will be getting in/around/out of the city on the 18th, 19th, or the 21st? I’m working from home on the 20th but have to travel to and from Tyson’s Corner on Wednesday and Thursday, and into downtown from Navy Yard on the 21st. I’ve checked the road closures but really have no idea what to expect since it seems like a lot of exits/roads are actually closing on 1/18 or 1/19.

    • JohnH

      Thursday is usually messy downtown because a lot of the north/south thoroughfares are closed in the city. Not sure where you are traveling to Tyson’s from. But a lot of people do not work that day (I believe DC schools are also off). So it’s not necessarily the amount of traffic – just so many streets are closed, you have to drive around all of downtown to get anywhere north/south.
      .
      As for Saturday, the inauguration parking restrictions last through 1 pm on Saturday (through the women’s march) so I’d imagine if there are as many people coming as said that getting through the city prior to 1 pm will not be enjoyable on Saturday. And given Metro is running a standard schedule for what could be a 200k+ person event, Metro will be very crowded.

      • AJSE

        Thank you! Going to Tyson’s from Columbia Heights Thursday AM and from Tyson’s into Navy Yard on Thursday PM. I’ll just plan to leave really early and come back late then? Would that be a good plan? Unfortunately, Metro is not an option for Thursday — luckily I can avoid pretty much everything by walking on Saturday.

        • JohnH

          Thursday will be fine for that – just stay out of central DC. There’s also the prayer service at the National Cathedral on Thursday – so I’d probably just shoot straight north up to 495 from Columbia Heights and get to Tyson’s from there. As for coming back, I’m guessing the quickest way to get to Navy Yard from Tysons during rush hour times would be going around 495 and up 295.
          .
          Again, it’s not necessarily the quantity of cars as a lot of people will not be working – it’s more so a bulk of downtown is closed including north/south arteries, as well as main thoroughfares like Independence/Constitution Aves.

    • JohnH

      Also, aside from Metro’s problems – it is probably a lot easier to use around inauguration than it is driving. Even if the trains are busy, waiting through a couple trains is a lot more relaxing than bottleneck traffic of people who have no idea where they’re going.

  • IDontGetIt

    Rave; Spending more time than I should have yesterday trolling Bikers for Trump on Facebook and in the Wapo comments section. They seem to be very confused over when and where to find their rally area (John Marshal Park which is in the No Drive zone that closes to vehicles at 3:00 am on 1/19) for the inauguration. I tried to help ;-)
    Rant: IDGI Sr has an uncomfortable and inconvenient but non life threatening medical condition. He asked one of Mrs. IDGI’s adult children to help him get to the Dr and they were too busy not working and enjoying the electricity he pays for them to take him Monday.

    • dcd

      “I tried to help ”
      .
      Thank you for your service to the cause.

      • IDontGetIt

        Dave Thomas Circle is on the Mall, right?

        • wdc

          Anyone needing to get around DC this weekend should just binge-watch Bones, or Designated Survivor, or really any DC-based TV show that is written and filmed in LA. “You’re at Dulles Airport? I’m on Capitol Hill. I’ll be there in 15 minutes.”

    • Blithe

      Love your Rave! Shaking my head at your rant. I’m guessing that both you and IDGI Sr are far too nice to just happen to misplace those pesky electric bills for a few months…..

      • Idontgetit

        Whoopsie!

  • Planner

    Rant: Lots of change at work. Two colleagues were let go, and I seem to be picking up all the work they used to do, while keeping everything I already did.
    Yes I am glad that I was not laid off, but I am realizing I do not care for contractor work, for various reasons.

    Which leads to
    Rant 2: Time to get the resume updated and circulated. Again. Oooph.

  • DCbyDay

    Rave: Three day work week (even if the reason isn’t wonderful)
    Rave: Bars with inauguration day specials so I can forget what is happening.
    Rant: Shin splints. Any recommendations on how to effectively stretch before/after running? Doesn’t seem to be stemming from my shoes at this point…

    • elbeech

      Stand on a step and rise on your toes and drop your heels below the step slowly. Or, just lots of general calf stretching. Or sit on the floor with your legs out and toes pointed and have a friend press down on your toes while you push up with them.

    • AliceInDC

      Late response re: shin splits. Ice them! I like to fill little paper dixie cups, freeze them, and peel back the paper to rub the ice up and down the shin for 20-30 minutes every few hours for a couple days.

  • houseintherear

    Query: What the sam heck was the loud banging this morning around 6:45???

    • I heard that too! It kind of sounded like cannons.

    • saf

      I heard it too. It’s often the cannons from Ft Myer/Arlington Cemetery. The sound really carries.

  • Anonymous

    RAVE: 90% chance of rain on Friday. Come on weather gods, do us right.

    • Andie302

      I just saw the guys out putting up No Parking – Inauguration signs – those things are going to be white runny messes by Friday! I’d love it if it was raining and maybe just a little bit colder. I won’t wish freezing rain…or will I?

  • OP Anon

    RAVE: new REI is amazing. Dropped a ton of cash there (and generally online) in preparation for a ski trip to Hokkaido next month.
    RAVE: so much new ski and snowboard gear is on its way to me. At the point in my life (and savings) where I can buy myself the nice stuff without feeling guilty. This is my passion.
    RANT: too much work before I leave.
    RANT: this is my first trip to the mountains this year. How is Snowshoe in WV in March?

    • Anon

      Snowshoe in March is going to be nothing like Japan in February. Just keep your expectations very low and you should be fine. ;-)

    • dcd

      Hopefully better than it will be this weekend. [Blargh.] We went 2 years ago over President’s weekend, and it was the coldest I’ve ever been. -4 BEFORE the wind chill, which brought it down to something like -22. As a ski getaway over inauguration weekend, 42 degrees and raining leaves a lot to be desired. Shoulda splurged and gone back to Utah.

      • OP Anon

        I’m thinking of just doing Utah in March. Looks like I can snag a long weekend flight for ~$300 to SLC. Not bad! I’ve never done the Wasatch range and Powder Mountain sounds incredible with its capacity limits and $25 snow cat backcountry rides (!!!)

  • LittleBluePenguin

    Rave: Very relaxing weekend, FINALLY! Ended up canceling the work thing we had planned for Saturday a.m., which kind of sucked after all the hard work that went into everything, but at least I got to sleep in! Then had a relaxing day yesterday with Spite Cupcakes at a delish breakfast then all day in the pools at SpaWorld. Feeling slightly guilty about not doing public service on MLK Jr day, but I think without uplugging and self-care, I would completely snap.
    Rant: Dear god I can’t believe this week is here. I feel nauseated and afraid of what lies ahead. Not a single ounce of me feels hopeful. Feel so discouraged if I let myself think about the future at all.
    ?: Trying to decide if I should talk with a doctor about my anxiety issues (not caused, but definitely not helped, by the election), and if so, which one? Or if I should just suck it up? Try therapy again (I think I get another bundle of free sessions with my work EPA)? Ugh.

    • artemis

      LBP, why don’t you try seeing a psychiatrist who either does talk therapy or works with a therapist in his/her practice? That way you could over both ends: determine if your anxiety warrants meds and deal with it through other therapeutic measures. And I think you should do it now rather than later. A good friend has been gently nudging me to get back into therapy (which I just did a few weeks ago). And now thanks to certain life events (and the state of our nation) I am so glad I did because I am going to need it. Better to look into mustering your support systems sooner than later.

      And never feel guilty about self-care. As I keep tellign people, the next four years are going to be an ultra-marathon, not a sprint. You have to take care of yourself.

      You aren’t the only one feeling anxious and discouraged.

      • LittleBluePenguin

        Hi artemis – I think that’s a good suggestion, but I don’t even know where to start with finding a psychiatrist! Like, do I go through my PCP? Do I go through the therapist I was seeing? Do I call around myself and hope they take my insurance? What are average wait times? I just feel paralyzed before i even start! Not sure if you know any of these things, I’m just throwing out some of the many, many questions I have!

        • artemis

          Either your therapist or your PCP could refer you. Or you could go through your work EAP. I honestly would start with two of these leads since one may not yield fruit. And I have no idea re: average wait time, but I do think some times it can take weeks, which is why starting now makes sense. Finding good mental health providers is challenging (I just went through this), and it makes me so sad for people really struggling with debilitating mental issues. If it is hard for those of us feeling relatively healthy, how much more so for people dealing with severe crisis? (Ok, end soap box.)

          Good luck!

  • Devin

    Revel: Things are looking up at the job. I think I may be up for a promotion in a few weeks. Hard work is finally paying off.
    Rant: Drifting friendship. A good childhood friend who I don’t see often wants us to go to Vegas. I’ve never been before as it’s just never really appealed to me. I told him Vegas doesn’t really seem like my thing but he keeps insisting that I’ll like it. The reasons why he thinks I’d like it are quite superficial don’t appeal to me. I might go anyway since he doesn’t get to travel much and I try to keep an open mind but it really makes me realize how different we are now and that he doesn’t really know who I am. Kinda sad.

  • MPinDC

    Rave: Completed the Saturday sudoku and the Sunday WPost crossword puzzle by Sunday afternoon
    Rave: Pasta with avocado sauce
    Rave: S bus – not showing on my app- pulled up to my bus stop just as I arrived. No waiting, and took me closer to my office than other S buses
    .
    Rant: This weather matches my mood – glum and grey and overcast. And rainy

    • Andie302

      Do you mind sharing how you make the avocado sauce? I may have another use for it!

    • MPinDC

      Sure – it’s an easy quick sauce! I used a half avocado mashed with a fork, plus grated garlic clove, about a T of olive oil and fresh lemon juice. Salt and pepper, cilantro. I saved a cup of pasta water and used it to make the sauce a little looser.

      • Andie302

        Thanks!

  • Blithe

    Rant: Realizing just how stressful the last few months have been. I’ve been feeling like a bomb is going to drop. It doesn’t help to realize that underlying my stress are some very real fears about things that I have absolutely no control over. LIke, that a bomb is going to drop.
    Rave: And +1 to dcd. Last night I got a wonderfully relaxing case of the giggles as I read about proposals for Obama to resign, allowing Biden to be the next president, pulling Ryan from the SotH role, and forcing Trump to quickly redo all of his election-focused merchandise. Or, better yet, Obama resigns, Biden has Hillary as his VP, then Biden resigns…. The combination of fantasy and silliness was all-too-brief, but much needed.
    Rave: I’ve been focusing on “enough”. Now I’ve shifted to “plenty”. It’s a small change, but it’s doing good things for my outlook.
    Rave: I’ve been baking a bit. It’s like playing in a sandbox — albeit with pesky rules. I’m still surprised every time that flour and eggs and a heat source turn out to be food. And sometimes quite good food at that.
    Query: I’ve never cooked with yeast, and the recipe for my first effort includes lard. Does anyone know where I can find it? Do I just need a larger grocery store? Eastern market?

    • MPinDC

      I think I’ve seen lard at Giant. It comes in sticks like butter

    • Epic brand has a few kinds of lard, you can probably find it at Yes or Whole Foods, or online if neither of those pan out. I usually order it from Thrive Market. Its good quality too, from grass-fed animals and such.

    • Blithe

      Thanks MPinDC and Bear!

  • Rave: My baby boy turned 6 weeks old yesterday. His little personality is starting to show and when he smiles it just melts me.
    Rant: It goes so fast! I can’t believe my maternity leave is almost halfway done. Hopefully the little dude will start sleeping longer than 2.5-3 hours at a time soon so I’m not a total disaster when I have to go back to work.
    Rave: By some miracle we got into our top choice daycare even though they prioritize feds. Such a relief.
    Rant: I am in need of adult interaction. We saw friends and family over the weekend and it made me realize I need more than baby snuggles to get me through my days (as lovely as they are). Also, maternity leave during winter is tough. I get outside for walks whenever we have the odd warm(ish) day but I need suggestions of where we could go to get out of the house that isn’t target or the mall (I live in PG county). Any ideas?

    • artemis

      I owe you a visit, Bear. I do agree that maternity leave in the winter time makes the feelings of isolation even more challenging.

      I think I went out for coffee almost every afternoon of maternity leave. It got me out of the house and meant that I got to speak to adults. The Hyattsville Library has story time for ages 0-2 every Monday. It would be a good way to get out and talk to other parents. Have you thought about mommy and baby yoga? Seeing other kids being a total mess crying and fussing at yoga actually made me feel a LOT better while on maternity leave. I realized that Baby Artie’s behavior was normal.

  • That One Guy

    Seeking advice: which juice bar/place is your favorite?

  • Andie302

    Query: I got cut off at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge yesterday by a motorcade, and then realized as I kept driving that at each overpass the local fire departments had raised flags to honor whoever it was. It wasn’t a big enough motorcade for the president/president-elect (at least I don’t think so), but now I’m curious! There was an ambulance in the motorcade and I wondered if maybe it was the body of a fallen firefighter. Anyone have any idea? It was probably 1:30 or so.

    • Anonamom

      There was a police office who was shot on duty making his way home from Baltimore to Queen Anne’s County yesterday.

      • Andie302

        thank you for the info – how sad

        • Anonamom

          Oh gosh, I just realized how ambiguous this was. He was released from the hospital and is recovering from his injuries and will do so at home with his wife as his caretaker. (there was a story about it on the news last night)

          • Andie302

            Oh this is so much better than what I assumed!!!!! And super heartwarming that he had so much support along the journey home!

  • Planner

    LaLa Land was lovely – both to look at and in tone – optimistic and sweet without being sappy or dumb

    Makes me want to be 27 years old (ha!) and living in Los Angeles.

  • AliceInDC

    Rave: Rode in a clinic this weekend with a pretty fancy eventing trainer. He was extremely helpful and I look forward to riding most days this week to work on what he pinpointed.
    Rave: finally submitted my note.
    Rant: Have a long to do list that I don’t feel like tackling.

    • UDPie

      Super jealous you got to clinic with a fancy eventing trainer. Any chance he was also super attractive…? :-) I need to get my butt in gear up in NYC to find these opps – I had them here in DC but need to rebuild that community!

      • AliceInDC

        He WAS super attractive with the most delightful accent! Isn’t that always the case? Yes, and please report back! I’ll be there this summer and would love to try out some places. I haven’t done too much investigating yet but there seem to be a lot of stables geared towards kids/beginners.

  • UDPie

    Late post –
    Rant: Crowded 6AM Amtrak commute.
    Rave: Still got some work done and basked in the glow of a long weekend.
    Rant: Sore.
    Rave: Acroyoga and lifting this weekend did my body good – Acroyoga was so much fun!
    Rave: Hoping to hit up the barn tonight. Gotta get in my pony time – even if she is a feisty chestnut mare who certainly tells me her opinions if she doesn’t like what I’m doing…

    • AliceInDC

      Ooh I’ve been wanted to try out acroyoga – it looks like it would be really fun. Have fun with the feisty mare tonight!

  • hiphopanonymous

    Rave: Had a WONDERFUL weekend, which included a friend’s b-day party, babysitting for a really awesome 5 month-old, bridesmaid dress shopping, and having friends over for dinner (which meant using our fancy china for the first time!). Also played our new wedding game, Dix-It, for the first time. Super fun!
    Rant: Can’t. Stop. Stuffing My Face. Don’t know what is wrong with me, but probably stems from boredom and unhappiness on the job.
    Rave: As someone with round cheeks, I just now discovered the power of contouring makeup. I’m not really a makeup person, but this is worth it!
    Rant: Work. Same shit, different day.

×

Subscribe to our mailing list