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Random Reader Rant and/or Revel

by Prince Of Petworth May 22, 2017 at 9:15 am 128 Comments


Photo by PoPville flickr user Miki J.

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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  • FridayGirl

    Rave: Colony Club is my new favorite place. How have I not been there before?! Totally made up for boring date I went on earlier in the day on Saturday!
    .
    Question for the PoPulace: Can one bring bagged lunches into Kogod Courtyard at the portrait gallery from outside? The internet has mixed opinions on this, but the Smithsonian website seems to imply that it’s not a problem.

    • SinDC

      You can absolutely bring outside food/drink into the Kogod courtyard (just obviously nowhere else in the museum).

      • FridayGirl

        Thank you!!!

    • I agree – Colony Club is phenomenal.

    • skj84

      Love Colony Club. We had an unofficial PoPville Happy hour there last year and they were super hospitable. Great spot for beer and coffee.

      • FridayGirl

        We should go back! Everyone was so nice! I even met some people ~in the wild~.

        • textdoc

          Hahaha!

  • Anonamomtobe

    Found out last week that fetus is not viable. D&E at 18 weeks. We are floored. Everything until last week was normal. Really devastated. But will get through this together and try again.
    .
    Rant: People who don’t understand why people have 2nd trimester terminations. There is literally nothing more I want in this world than for this to have been a baby. This is the worst thing that I’ve ever had to deal with. No one does this for fun. No one. And it’s a significant surgury, for which we have to pay out of pocket, bc my spouse is a federal employee, and that means some republican men got to decide that their God would rather I suffer longer, deal with a 3rd trimester miscarriage, and then go through labor for a stillborn fetus. That’s what they think their God wants instead of my spouse’s health insurance covering this medical procedure. That is, in my opinion, not just ignorance, but evil.

    • FridayGirl

      I am so, so sorry you have to go through this.

    • artemis

      I am so very sorry, Anonamomtobe. I’m sending you very big hugs and you are in my thoughts. I hope you have supportive friends and family that you can rely on during your physical and emotional recovery.

      And I 100% agree with you about being bias (and governmental obstruction) regarding second trimester terminations.

    • LittleBluePenguin

      I am so, so very sorry for loss, and for the added aggravations and expense you’re forced to deal with because of some despicable old men and their twisted logic. I am sending love and hugs your way!

    • AB

      I’m so sorry. As the mom of a stillborn baby, I couldn’t agree with you more. This is just awful. If you think that talking to other parents could help, there’s a great support group, once a month, at the NE library. Details here: http://www.capitolmissfoundation.org/.

      Sending you peace and love.

      • Anonamomtobe

        Thank you for the resource.

    • mtpresident

      I am so very sorry. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your spouse. Sending so many hugs. I hope you have lots of support among family and friends to help carry you through.

    • Pleasanter

      How terrible. Sending you wishes for peace and hope as you go through this. Thank you also, for sharing your story and experience. That, to me, is very brave.

    • Emmaleigh504

      I’m so sorry for you loss. And agree with your rant, it’s evil to make people suffer more.

    • Andie302

      So sorry to hear this, and for the added trouble based on the health insurance coverage. Sending hugs

    • textdoc

      I’m so terribly sorry. And the lack of insurance coverage for the D&E really adds insult to the significant psychological injury of such a devastating loss.
      .
      Last week I was catching up on the Facebook page of an ex whom I’m Facebook friends with but don’t interact with much on Facebook. I pieced together that he and his fiancee had lost a pregnancy around the 4- or 5-month mark… and from the wording, I think it was a termination because of significant anomalies that would’ve meant the baby would either die immediately upon birth or be a very late-term stillbirth. It’s very sad that people don’t understand that you’re choosing between “heartbreak now” and “probably even worse heartbreak later.”

      • Anonamomtobe

        It has been comforting, in a weird way, to hear that so many other couples have had to deal with pregnancy loss. I mean, of course I hate that anyone has to go through this. But I wish people talked about it more. That people knew how common it is. I feel better knowing I’m not the only one. It feels more like just a bump in the road that way.
        .
        What we didn’t really understand, as first timers, is that the early genetic screening (had 3 different ones, all normal) only test for the most common issues. But there a whole host of other very serious (in some cases, more serious) but less common issues that you won’t find out about until later in the pregnancy. We were prepared for the possibility of an early miscarriage. We were not prepared to have already begun purchasing baby stuff, telling all our friends, etc., only then to find out there will be no baby. Luckily (?), it’s just a random fluke of nature – not something that dooms our future chances. We feel very lucky in that regard.

        • Anon for this

          I’m so sorry. We went through the same thing (found out at the ultrasound where we were supposed to find out the baby’s gender about the issues, and had to schedule a D&E for very soon thereafter because of the approaching end of the second trimester). Like you, we thought once we cleared the first 12 weeks, and got good results from the early screening we were home free. There’s nothing that will make you feel better right now, but the anguish does subside. We now have a beautiful child, and it sounds like you have no barriers to that happening in the future. That’s something to hold on to.

          • Anonamomtobe

            Thank you for sharing this.

        • textdoc

          I felt so sad as I pieced the story together — they’d made it past the three-month mark and thought they were “out of the woods” (apparently there had been some rockiness earlier), so they’d announced the pregnancy on Facebook, posted the sonogram, etc.
          .
          And then about two months later, there was a post that they had “had to say goodbye” to their daughter (which was what made me think it was a termination in the face of knowing she couldn’t survive).
          .
          I think pregnancy loss as far as miscarriage is starting to be more talked about… but when it comes to second-trimester terminations, most people don’t understand that these are usually cases of babies who were very much wanted, and of parents who are devastated.

        • Pleasanter

          I also wish people talked about it more – it’s way more common than we’re led to believe! Wishing you and your spouse all the best. Be kind to yourselves, and lean on friends and family.

        • AB

          I’m so sorry. I feel like, having been through a loss at 28 weeks, that doctors really don’t want to tell you that things can go terribly wrong at ANY time, and that you are NEVER out of the woods. Just like for the rest of us, babies get sick, have terminal illnesses and they die. I think for me, the loss of innocence, on top of my daughter dying, was a really tough second order blow. That and people I thought I could count on dropping off the face of the planet and just not being there for us. Finally, when I got pregnant again (my son is 17 months now), there were the people who thought I was back to normal and that I’d moved past my loss. Yes, it’s easier than it was in the early days but I’m never going to stop missing her.

          Other than the support group I mentioned above, I’ve found comfort at glowinthewoods.com, stillstandingmag.com, and pregnancyafterlosssupport.com. One thing I read at glow stuck with me: be patient, gentle, and kind to yourself, and ask those around you to do the same.

          • Anonamomtobe

            Thank you for sharing this. I’m so sorry for your loss – and so happy for you about your son.

    • LedroitTigah

      You are in my thoughts. I’m very sorry for your loss.

    • Formerly ParkViewRes

      I’m so sorry. And angry for you that you have to pay for this out of pocket.

      • wdc

        Agree. Sad and angry for you. What will it take to get compassionate treatment from the men of the GOP??

        • Accountering

          Less men of the GOP unfortunately. I’m so sorry for what you are going through, and the added stress of the health care issues. Keeping you in my thoughts, try and take care of yourself.

          • anon

            Yes, waiting for compassionate treatment from the GOP men, or any lawmakers, male or female, who do not see women’s well-being as a good thing, is a complete and utter waste of time and energy. We need to get them out of positions of having any power over us in order to get anywhere.

    • BRP

      oh Anonamomtobe, I am so sorry.

    • eggs

      I’m so sorry.

    • Quotia Zelda

      I’m so sorry.

    • Tall E

      I’m so sorry, and am with you on being angry at the ignorant men responsible for the insurance circumstances.

      • anon

        You know, as someone who has been an adult for 40 years now, and 40 years have passed since I first got involved with working on feminist issues, it is appalling how little things have changed for women, and have in many ways gotten worse with all the backlash laws about abortion.
        .
        But I don’t get attitudes being angry at ignorant men an hoping that they will be more compassionate rulers of us. We could, seriously, take over electoral politics and stop putting up with this stuff if enough women just decided to do it. We have the tools, the money, the backing from the electorate.
        .
        The problem is more a mental one. If women truly saw themselves as having their lives held hostage to these laws, we’d change it for good. Most just figure it isn’t that bad and ignore our very second class status. We need to change that. I’m beginning to despair that it may not happen in my lifetime.

        • Accountering

          This will happen in your lifetime. Millenials are much more progressive when it comes to abortion (and basically all other things) and as they grow as a percentage of the electorate, that will move the needle. More importantly as they grow as a percentage of the electorate, the Rs will continue to face a worse and worse demographic nightmare, and will relegate themselves to a minority party. That is the future, and it’s not that far away.
          .
          In the meantime, we have to fight these battles, and see people hurt, for absolutely no reason. It’s sad.

          • anon

            I agree millenials, and the generations above them, are much more progressive, and we’ve seen the difference that has made with, say, popular opinions about gay marriage. As a woman, though, I see that there are always some men in every single generation who want to control women and keep our status second class, and it goes far beyond abortion policies into many, many areas of life.
            .
            I’m really pointing to women as a group who refuse to make the change to better our own status. Women are still largely brainwashed. White women, I should say – the majority of whom actually voted for Trump (really.) This does not give me much hope. (Non-white women voted in a much larger majorities NOT for Trump.)

    • anon

      I am so sorry you and your spouse are going through this, and wish you the best as you recover from your loss and continue to build your family.
      .
      Thank you for writing about the how the health care laws have affected you. I think these things continue because so many people are unaware of just how bad things have become with respect to women’s health care. You are doing a good thing by educating others by sharing about your experience and these laws.
      .
      And thank you for labeling the evil intent of the lawmakers as exactly what it is.

    • rfff924

      My heart aches for you–I’m so very sorry to hear this news and that you have to go through this. I see someone already mentioned the MISS support group, but if you can and think it will be helpful, I also recommend seeing a therapist who specializes in these issues with your partner. When we went through a pregnancy loss, I found it was really important to have a space for my partner and I to move through our grief with someone guiding the way. Also, as others have said, thank you for sharing your rant–it’s absolutely disgusting the policymaking surrounding choice and the concerning tactics being undertaken for 20 week and over terminations. Having gone through pregnancy and loss, nothing has made me a more staunch advocate for choice, especially knowing the difficult decisions and significant undertaking faced by those seeking a post 12 week termination. Again, I’m so so sorry you are going through this. You and your partner are in my thoughts.

    • Elvis’s Mom

      I’m so sorry for your loss. And for the hardship you have to endure because of bad leadership that doesn’t begin and end in empathy. Sending you a virtual hug and crying a few tears in the hope it means you can cry a few less.

  • skj84

    Rave: Ragtime at Fords Theatre. What a phenomenal production. Well sung and acted. Ragtime is not only one of my favorite musicals, but also one of my favorite books. Plus I love that Fords used an all local cast. Usually the big theaters casts New York actors in these shows, which is a big disservice to the local theatre scene.
    Rave/Rant: Ran the Capitol Hill Classic on Sunday. Despite very little training I managed to run it in 1:13. Well run/walk. I’m super sore this morning though. My hips and feet hurt.
    Rant: This morning has been too Monday. I was stuck in the rain waiting for my bus which was 20 minutes late. Of course we also hit traffic, so I’m late. To make matters worse, a meeting that had originally been scheduled for this afternoon was rescheduled to 9am and the manager didn’t email me until 8:55am. So my client was waiting for me. i feel so embarrassed, I hate making people wait, and it wasn’t my fault at all.

    • FridayGirl

      Re your bus rant: My bus didn’t show up and I had to wait 20 minutes and was late, too! Geez!!! I’m sorry your morning was an ordeal — the meeting situation wasn’t your fault! I would hope the client would understand that.

    • wdc

      Aw, man! I would have loved to see Ragtime! I didn’t know it was happening. But you must have seen the last show, because it’s over now. Bummer.
      And I share your bus rant. I had the worst driver this morning; she leaned on the horn for what seemed like half the ride, and it took twice as long as usual because of traffic and because she kept swerving from lane to lane trying to get ahead. And she stomped on the brake as if it were covered in cockroaches, over and over. I contemplated how difficult it would be to impersonate a bus driver, and if perhaps she just thought it would be fun to steal a bus and drive the route for a while, and found it harder than she expected.

  • mtpresident

    Rave: Lovely trip to visit my grandmother for her 90th birthday last week. Mtpkiddo was such a trouper for the marathon of a visit schedule.
    Rave: Impromptu decision to weed our front garden areas and then procure plants and mulch to finish it off. We got home from the hardware store by 6, and had it all finished off by 7! And now the daisies and lantana can get a nice start in the ground with plenty of rain spread over a few days.
    Rant: Worried about weather tomorrow night when we’re supposed to go to a baseball game. Boo.

    • textdoc

      “We got home from the hardware store by 6, and had it all finished off by 7!” What?!? How is that even possible?? I guess it goes faster with two (?) adults, but I’m still really impressed!!

      • mtpresident

        I had already weeded it, so we just needed to dig holes, plant, and apply mulch. It’s also a pretty small space–so we were only planting 9 plants. And the kids actually helped some (mtpkiddo likes pouring the plant food and putting water into the holes pre-planting)–including allowing both adults to work! But yeah, I was pleasantly surprised we were able to finish it off in that time span.

  • LittleBluePenguin

    Rave: Vet appointment for grey cat went well, although she reallllly didn’t like being wrestled to have her nails clipped! Other than the recommendation that she lose a little weight, we should be set!
    Rant: I’m thinking about moving other kitty’s annual appointment up a few months, because she’s been sneezing like crazy and seeming to show her age a bit more – stiffer in the mornings, getting a bit thinner, and drinking tons of water (she’s been a water-lapper for years, so that’s not really a change) just… something seems a bit off. Maybe it’s just age.
    Rant: Saw a baby blue jay fall out of its nest yesterday, and mom/dad swooped down to check on it – I ran out the door too because I couldn’t tell from a distance what fell out of our tree, but then when I got there….poor baby bird only survived a few minutes. I know it’s ridiculous to be so upset by something like that, but I f*cking hate how cruel nature can be.
    Rave: My best friend is coming to visit in August for a few days sans kiddos and we’re gonna have some good girl time!

    • Andie302

      I’m so sorry about the baby bird. I know exactly what you mean! My parents have a male cardinal that comes to their window nearly everyday for the last three years. (He repeatedly knocks into it with his beak, and his nickname is Psycho.) Last time I ran at their house I saw one that had been hit on the road and I was so worried it was “theirs”. (It was not, but I was still sad to see what looked like a perfectly in tact animal dead on the side of the road.) Nature can be so harsh, that is for certain.

      • MPinDC

        He may be seeing his reflection in the window and think it’s another male that he has to fight off. Male cardinals are very territorial !

    • Tall E

      Increased water consumption and thinness is potentially hyperthyroidism, def agree that you should move up the appt for your elderly kitty (had one that went through this).
      Sad about that baby bird.

      • textdoc

        On a tangent… there was an interesting New York Times article the other day on hyperthryoidism in cats, and how it went from being virtually unheard of in the early 1970s to being fairly common today (about 10 percent of senior cats have it)… and how it appears to be linked to a particular class of flame retardants.
        .
        https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/16/magazine/the-mystery-of-the-wasting-house-cats.html?_r=0

        • LittleBluePenguin

          I actually just read that article, as it came up in my newsfeed on FB, but older kitty doesn’t have a markedly increased appetite that one might expect, she’s still just as dainty and picky as ever when it comes to her food….I’m worried it might be diabetes….

          • textdoc

            :( I think diabetes in cats is fairly (?) treatable, though… IIRC, binntp’s late cat had diabetes but did well in spite of it.

          • anonymous

            Is she peeing a lot more and/or having accidents? That was a blatant indicator when my childhood cat was diagnosed with diabetes. Luckily, diabetes is fairly treatable, ours went on to live for many more happy years.
            .
            Can’t hurt to take her in a little early.

          • LittleBluePenguin

            No, I mean, she pees a lot because she drinks a lot but she’s never had an accident (she did on one occasion pee on my bed because I left her with my parents when I went to New Zealand for a month, but that was no accident, she was literally pissed at me!). Sigh. I just feel like something is wrong and I can’t put my finger on it. I guess I’ll see when they might have an appointment in the coming few weeks….

          • Yes, please get her checked for diabetes–those were the initial signs my past kitty exhibited prior to her diagnosis. Even if you have to go the insulin route, it’s not difficult to inject them, and my kitty lived another 3 years (to age 16) with diabetes. (Also, I have some leftover supplies if she does get such a diagnosis that I’d be happy to share and spare you the expense!)

      • nevermindtheend

        Agreed – the Times just had an article about hyperthyroidism in cats: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/16/magazine/the-mystery-of-the-wasting-house-cats.html

        • textdoc

          Great minds… ;)

    • textdoc

      Agreed that it would be a good idea to move up the older kitty’s appointment. Fingers crossed for it being either nothing or something that can be easily remedied.

    • Nose-in-a-Book

      When I noticed that my then-8 year old female cat had lost weight and was peeing more than usual, I immediately thought “diabetes” also, but in fact it is kidney disease- irreversible. So she receives subcutaneous fluids every other day, which no one likes but we are all resigned to it at this point. Hopefully your scenario won’t be as serious.

      • artemis

        These were the symptoms that my cat had (along with increased vomiting) before her diagnosis of kidney disease.

        • LittleBluePenguin

          oh god I hope that’s not what this is :( I’ve made an appointment for her next Tuesday, and am hoping it’s all just chalked up to age. Now I’m even more nervous, I can’t imagine how expensive subQ fluids are….

          • artemis

            LBP, our cat’s kidney disease is in check (so far) with a simple change of cat food and antacids twice a day to control her vomiting. So don’t freak out yet!

            I hope whatever is bothering your kitty is mild and easily remedied.

          • Nose-in-a-Book

            The fluids aren’t terribly expensive if your vet will let you order them online. It’s the time commitment. Also, it is best done as a two-person venture, one to hold the cat, one to administer the needle. I’ve done it solo but it’s not optimum.

          • Nose-in-a-Book

            Agreed, the special food, while more expensive, probably is a factor in slowing the degenerative process. We’re a good year and a half into this and she is still playful, cuddly seems to have a good quality of life – no litter box issues, almost no vomiting either (we gave up on the antacids, it was more traumatic to throw them down her throat for the good it seemed to do)

  • Emmaleigh504

    Rave: Decided I could be late today so sleep a little longer on this rainy day.
    Rant: Donna had other plans. Damn morning kitty.
    Rave: DVRed Twin Peaks so I can watch it tonight, so excited.

  • wdc

    Someone here (Andie, maybe?) had a recommendation for an appliance repair person. Can you remind me who that was? We used him maybe a year ago, and he was great, but now I can’t find the info. Thanks!

  • LedroitTigah

    Behold, the majestic orang hutan (person of the forest)

    Rave: memorial day is coming! memorial day is coming!
    Rant: Need to organize my finances and put myself on a budget. I’ve been out of control recently – time to rein it in.

  • artemis

    Rant: People who can’t shut their stupid mouths. Another mother ended up in tears on the metro this morning when a woman kept staring at her and her son and then asked point blank, “Is that your son?” (The mother and father were Latino, and their son presented as very white.) The conversation devolved from there and ended with the rude woman stating, “Well you never know with so many kids be kidnapped these days.” It was a reminder that 1) to check my own assumptions and biases and 2) if you don’t have anything nice to say, STFU. Ugh.
    Rave: I made my friends participate in group exercise for my birthday as well. But in this case, it was yoga at a local pub followed by beer and lunch outside.
    Rave: Even though I woke up late, was delayed getting out of the house by Baby Artie, and had a rainy commute that slowed metro, I somehow managed to make it to work on time and in a relatively good mood.

    • LittleBluePenguin

      ha! I do the occasional yoga + beer workshops, that seems like a perfectly acceptable birthday celebration! I think the last person who mentioned a birthday party consisting of a group workout and gym recruitment made me think of a much sweatier, more grueling workout!

      • hiphopanonymous

        Yeah, that was me…it was sweaty, grueling, and a full hour of “fun”. Then followed by a cookout and beers, but by the time we got to their house – 9 p.m. – I was ready to turn around and go home!

    • textdoc

      “Well you never know with so many kids be kidnapped these days.” Jesus Christ. Not only was that a totally unnecessary remark (and conversation), media coverage of the few kidnappings-by-strangers that occur has given people a really distorted impression of the risk/prevalence. Most kidnappings are by parents.

      • artemis

        +1000. In the same way that most survivors know their rapists in some capacity, most kidnappings are by family members. Media coverage of these issues (and most crimes) so grossly distort people’s perceptions.

        The bigger issue for me is that the woman was just curious/nosy about how the family worked since they didn’t seem to “belong” together in her eyes. I really took the kidnapping comment as her double-down and refusing to admit that she was being rude and inappropriate when the mother called her out.

        • textdoc

          Totally agreed that the bigger problem was that she should’ve just kept her big mouth shut! It’s totally understandable for people to _wonder_ about that kind of thing… but they should keep their wondering to themselves.

        • mtpresident

          Indeed–was also going to post that kidnappings are not more prevalent than they used to be, especially if you’re talking about kidnapping by strangers, etc. Ugh. That’s just terrible. We have several families in the neighborhood with white parents & African kids–I suspect the same person would not have made the same assumption in that case. What a racist idiot.

        • Anon

          Yes, Artemis! She was being nosy and ridiculous. If you were actually concerned that the child was kidnapped, you wouldn’t say, “Excuse me, is that your child?” like the kidnapper is just going to fess up on the spot!

      • HaileUnlikely

        While I agree with your larger point, I’m fairly willing to forgive people for having inaccurate perceptions of the risk of a multitude of things that they aren’t involved in professionally. There are certain things that I know a lot about (because knowing a lot about those specific things is what I get paid for), but beyond those specific things, I’m sure I have all sort of misperceptions about other risks that I hear about in the news or from friends/connections in real life or on social media or elsehwere. I’d wager that the overwhelming majority of people have lots of them.

        • mtpresident

          I take your point. But I think it’s a bit of a stretch here. Someone sees a kid who is presumably showing no signs of discomfort or stress–but just happens to appear white compared to Latino parents–and immediately assumes kidnapping? Really? Like I said, would the same thing happen with white parents and non-white kids? I doubt it.

          • textdoc

            “Like I said, would the same thing happen with white parents and non-white kids? I doubt it.” For what it’s worth… I did read an essay online a year or two ago by a white guy who was reported (IIRC) as a possible sex trafficker because he was taking photos of his two adopted Asian daughters hugging (in a rather contrived pose).

          • textdoc

            I should mention that in this case, the daughters were teenagers. I doubt the situation would have caused much attention if the daughters were little kids.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Not arguing with that aspect of it at all. The behavior that Artemis describes here is truly egregious. I just mean that in terms of what the woman in question did wrong here, I don’t think having an incorrect belief about the prevalence of [well, anything] merits inclusion on the list.

          • textdoc

            I guess having mistaken beliefs about XYZ is not necessarily a big deal… but if those mistaken beliefs inform how someone interacts with other people, it’s potentially a problem.
            .
            Like the guy with the stroller (mentioned below) who apparently thinks the world is full of pedophiles trying to photograph children for nefarious purposes, and who chased a PoPville poster because he thought the poster was photographing his kid.

          • Americans are horrendous at risk perception.
            It is especially sad to me that as the murder rate has gone down, surveys show that people think it is going up. Wtf? A lot of these same people don’t realize the incidence of suicide in the country is roughly twice that of murder.
            I heard part of the New Yorker Radio Hour yesterday and the part on guns was just painful and showed how the NRA uses these ideas to stoke fear.

          • HaileUnlikely

            On that last point (about “misperceptions” about the murder rate), if something is decreasing nationally but increasing locally and somebody who lives in a place where it’s increasing says it’s increasing, they’re not completely wrong. Somebody who lives in Chicago or Baltimore or certain neighborhoods of DC can be forgiven for declining to revel in the knowledge that the national average homicide rate is down right now, as where they live it is decidedly not down. Other example, nationwide, a person is much more likely to die in a car crash than they are to be murdered. However, a teenage boy or young man in southeast DC is more than 10 times as likely to be murdered as to die in a car crash.

          • HaileUnlikely, those are very good points and I agree.
            My understanding is that the Pew survey about people’s feelings on crime levels in this country is national. I don’t really know how representative that is of various places, though I assume it’s fairly representative of “average” americans.
            Ugh, car crashes. I wasn’t even thinking about that. We love to get in our danger machines and think they’re perfectly safe, but we freak out about planes, murderers, kidnappings, losing the fortunes we know we’ll win in the lottery, gangs, bear attacks, etc.

          • JoDa

            Thing is, while there is an uptick in crime from the incredibly low (historically) crime levels seen in the aughts and early teens in places like DC, Baltimore, Chicago, etc., the long-term trend is still *down.* Chicago, as an example, had enjoyed murder rates as low as they’d seen since the 60’s between 2004-2015, and then they’ve ticked up some. Still FAR below averages from the ’70’s, 80’s, and 90’s, but up relative to recent memory.
            .
            Should we worry about an uptick in crime…do things to fight it? Yes, absolutely. Crime hurts you when it comes to your doorstep, and it is more prevalent at more people’s doorsteps than it’s been in the last 10-15 years, in large cities. But you have to have some perspective. You have to be a student of the statistics AND the economy AND the political environment. On average, even the “worst” parts of DC are safer than they’ve been in the 15+ years I’ve lived here. They’re less safe than they were 2 or 3 years ago, so we need to find out why. Nuance is *extremely* important when looking at short-term and localized increases in crime.
            .
            As for the insanity of many parents, I just can’t understand it. I have friends who won’t let their kids out of their sight for a second…won’t let their 7- or 8-year-old of the opposite gender pee if there isn’t a family bathroom they can go in with them or stand guard at the door of. These people were riding bikes all over town with me as a child. We’d hop in a friend’s parent’s car with just a call over our shoulder of “Jane’s parents are here, we’re going to the park!” We’d call at 9 PM and ask if we could spend the night because we were having so much fun and Sarah’s parents said it was okay to stay and we could watch movies until 11! Our parents only had a vague notion of where we were and who we were with. And I don’t know a single person who was abducted or abused. I’m not denying that abductions and abuse happened, but all these people *I* know who are not watching their kids like hawks “lived” through a lot of unsupervised and lightly supervised adventures, and have few bad stories to tell (I can tell some stories of being harassed as a pre-teen/teen, but I had enough “street smarts” to keep myself safe enough to avoid being snatched…I’d be interested to know if a 12-year-old today would think to go into a nearby store, buy a pack of gum, and ask the cashier for help if she thought she was being followed…we were taught these things in school).

          • JoDa

            *now watching their kids like hawks….

    • wdc

      I saw a facebook post from a friend of a friend… long rambling account of two teenaged girls who talked to the poster’s young son at the playground. The poster spoke as if it was a no-brainer that she had narrowly saved her son from abduction, because “we all know that sex trafficking of children is on the rise” (no it isn’t, it’s just more reported now) and “I heard that traffickers will use other children to lure kids away from their parents.” Of course she called the police, and worded the whole post as a harrowing ordeal, and exhorted all other parents to never let their kids out of their sight, even for a minute, because it’s guaranteed that if you do, they will get kidnapped and sold into sexual slavery. It was one of the most alarmist and ignorant things I’ve ever read. All because two teen girls spoke to her little kid on a playground.

      • textdoc

        Ai yai yai. :(

      • mtpresident

        What?????? That’s insane.

      • eriognoi

        That doesn’t surprise me. I was taking photos at L’Enfant Plaza station a week or two ago and some guy with a kid in a stroller chased me and blocked my path for several minutes because he thought I had been photographing his kid (even though there was a cover over the stroller). He didn’t stop even when I told him I hadn’t photographed his kid and when I eventually got away he yelled “pervert” at me.

        • textdoc

          Yikes!

        • wdc

          He *chased* you? With the kid along for the ride?? I’d’ve called the cops. You can’t reason with someone like that. And you don’t know what he might do in his “righteous” anger.

      • Bobert

        I feel sorry for her kid.

    • A

      WHAT?! That is among the rudest things I’ve ever heard (re: first rant).

    • That One Guy

      For some reason the rant reminds me of the Blackish episode with the white toddler/baby in the elevator scene.

    • anon

      Rude. Maybe he was their son, as genes of those of people with mixed ancestry express themselves in all sorts of ways, and people also become parents in many ways.
      .
      In such a situation, they couple could also be a child’s caretakers – most of the people you see taking care of white children while their parents work or are otherwise occupied are not white. Babysitters and nannies all over the place would be constantly challenged if people suspected that every child seen with a person of a different skin tone was being kidnapped!

    • It’s only a matter of time before this happens to my husband, who is mixed race, and our son, who looks white.

      • artemis

        I thought about you this moring, Bear, when it happened.

      • Quotia Zelda

        No one has ever implied anything like kidnapping with me and my biracial children, but I been asked some incredibly intrusive adoption questions.

      • anon

        I had a friend who was black whose husband was white, and she was constantly assumed to be the nanny of the child she gave birth to (with no assisted reproduction.) I could see this myself when I was out with her and her child – people would see the cute blonde kid and look up and smile at me, ’cause I’m a white woman, rather than at the child’s mom standing next to me.
        .
        At least she was assumed to be the babysitter by the other kids (little kids say the darndest things, and would tell her she couldn’t be the mom but had to be the nanny) when she picked her child up from day care – with a man, I think people are more likely to assume worse. Hopefully this will change, and soon, so as not to affect your family.

  • Effie

    Rave: Looking forward to crawfish dinner with a good friend – crab season is also right around the corner.
    Rant: I feel like the metro train operators keep shortening the time to get on the train… this morning saw people barely have any time to get on the train before the doors slammed. I personally had to run off as well so I wouldn’t get caught..

  • Marty

    Anyone go through Grant Circle this morning? How was the traffic with the new cones?

    • Once you got in the circle it wasn’t too bad; traffic was going probably about 15 mph and people were being pretty polite letting others in. However, every street leading to the circle was backed up pretty significantly.

  • hiphopanonymous

    Rave: Friend’s b-day “Party” at Orange Theory Fitness was more fun than I was expecting…and truly a good workout as I keep finding newer and sorer muscles every day.
    Rant: Party was directly following my first physical therapy session for what is essentially a joint at the base of my spine so is affected by running…and half of the workout was running. Also, I’m glad that I already workout so am in pretty good shape – had I gone in there a non-in shape person, that would have killed me for sure.
    Rave: We are currently couchless (sold our old ones and waiting for the new ones) so we set up our tent in the living room on Saturday! It didn’t stay up well b/c we couldn’t stake it down but was fun for a while.
    Rave: Hubby texted just NOW saying that he has qualified for the next phase of a job he applied for…in Colorado! I love DC but Colorado could be fun…….

  • anonymous

    Rant: Just read about the whole Lou Reed/Take a Walk on the Wild Side dust up at some college. I really hope what I read was “fake news” and I was duped.

    Rave : Long weekend coming up!

  • That One Guy

    Rant: Regardless of how many cups of Earl Grey I drink, I can’t seem to wake up.
    Rant: Rainy days and Monday, y’all.
    Rant: The word y’all. I never liked it and try to avoid its use.

    • FridayGirl

      Ha! I like y’all even though it sounds unnatural when I say it.

    • Emmaleigh504

      I love y’all. It’s a great way of expressing the plural you. I use it a lot. : )

    • That One Guy

      I suspect it’s regional dialectic preference like how some people use pop, cola, soda, etc. I’m more a “yous” type person. Ha.

  • AnonMed

    Rant: My cardiac stress test was “mildly abnormal.” I may have AFib and I have a cardiac catheterization test to look forward to. Getting old is scary and it doesn’t help that I’m alone.

    • anonymous 11

      I’m sorry to hear that. Sending best wishes for your test.

    • Planner

      Good luck to you. I went through a cardiac ablation procedure in February to correct an atrial flutter, and although it was intimidating, I can say that I do feel better as a result.
      And I totally agree with you about getting older, and doing it alone.

  • wdc

    Lovely article on the locals who participated in the early Anacostia River conservation efforts: http://www.npr.org/2017/05/20/527630520/in-washington-d-c-a-program-in-which-birds-and-people-lift-each-other-up

    • textdoc

      WOW! That is a fantastic (and heartening) story — thanks for the link!

  • MPinDC

    Rave: Farm time, and bird raves – saw a bald eagle (twice), a pair of indigo buntings have been coming to visit the feeder, a pair of orioles are making a nest in a tree over the garden, and I saw a wee little barn swallow chase off a big ol’ crow. The barn swallow was doing the bird equivalent of nipping at the crow’s heels – a small and mighty bird!
    Rave: Two new orchids in bloom – they’re tall plants with tall bloom stalks so they look stunning.
    .
    Rainy day, Monday but no rants!

    • Wow – that’s like a whole nature show in one paragraph!

  • Pleasanter

    Rave: Google Photos making Meow Movies. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/google-photos-meow-movies_us_591335b4e4b050bdca617ff4?ncid=engmodushpmg00000003

    I got a notification yesterday on my (Android) phone that “my Meow Movie” was ready. Basically Google Photos compiled a ton of the pictures of my cat that live on my phone and made a movie slide show thing with them with a ridiculous Meow song soundtrack.

    • I got a dog one a little while ago!

  • Question: does anyone know anything about the loud bangs and flashes (like small explosions) in the alley behind DC Reynolds and Looking Glass Saturday night?
    Rave: I was walking my dog by Lion’s the other night when they were about to close up and there was a large, very drunk man ambling down the sidewalk. The guy in Lion’s offered me refuge, which I thought was nice since we was trying to close up.
    Rant: I need a weekend from my weekend
    Rant: I have legit no idea how to do most of the tasks I’ve taken on in my “new job” (it’s not a new job, it’s just more work for the same pay). I feel like Dilbert’s boss asking me new reports to do things that I don’ understand at all.

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