Thursday, July 30, 2009

Get Your Daily Deal

Just got an email from the folks at Living Social, a Facebook Application Development company, who have launched an on-line site offering significant discounts to some of the best restaurants, spas, museums, and services in DC. As the email states, "each day, a new deal is launched at and people have 24 hours to “get in” on the deal." Today's deal? A 50% discount on tickets to the International Spy Museum. Sounds good to me. In these hard economic times, who couldn't use a deal?

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Monday, July 27, 2009

Swingers in DC

Late last year I posted about a weird experience I had at Kramerbooks where I was approached by a couple of swingers. Well, now I know where they hang out. I was on my way to meet Mitch and Clayton at Halo (of course) on Saturday and got a text from Mitch that there's a swingers party upstairs. Once I neared the door, it was clear that something different was going on. A stream of seemingly straight couples going into Halo is odd. Who knew there were so many swingers in DC. They were all headed upstairs after paying the $40 charge and only if they have signed up on the web site. The name of the party is Entre Nous and apparently there's a strict dress code: classy skank. A couple of women came downstairs to mingle with us non-swingers and immediately latched onto Clayton. They looked like the Real Housewives of Orange County. And let me just say, I have serious issues with these shows and I'm curious to see what they'll do with the DC version. But anyway, back to the swingers. One of them whipped out her phone and proceeded to show him her portfolio of nude pictures. Well they do like to share, don't they?
I do find it kind of discriminatory to allow women to come alone but not men. What's up with that? I would imagine this would make it difficult for a woman trying to hook up with two men. Hey, I'm just saying.

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Saturday, July 25, 2009

Gay Night

After several occurrences lately of turning down invites from my friend Derek in favor of dates with straight men, we finally hung out last night. Our neighbor Lori had the next day off and decided to join us. We started off at The Fireplace, which I've been to before. The place kind of creeps me out but you can't beat the cheap, strong drinks. We then headed over to Apex. I had never been there even though both Derek and my friend Clayton have said how much they love the place. In comparison, I like this place place a lot better than Town. While Apex is also big, it doesn't have that cold, industrial feel like Town and instead of two levels, it's sectioned off into different rooms. The music in each room was better as well. And multiple bars with plenty of bartenders helps too. I also noticed there were more women there than I've seen at Town and fewer shirtless guys. Not a fan of the bathrooms though. Overall, lots of fun. I love the gigantic sequined shoe (left) on the wall.
We ended the night at DC Cafe. Love their shwarmas!

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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sometimes Talking Just Isn't Necessary

I feel like the last few days have been a blur as I have been constantly on the go at one party or date after another. As usual, when it rains it pours. On Thursday I had a promising date with Bachelor #2 at the new W Hotel's very pretentious POV Roof Terrace. It's weird because I remember not too long ago when this was Hotel Washington's Sky Terrace and was filled with tourists in shorts and sneakers. I'm starting to wonder if every place in DC will turn into a scene from a music video. Anyway, the weekend also included a birthday get-together for a relative, a great Indian dinner at Mitch's place and a Sunday night date with Bachelor #4 - a new addition to the list. Another former college athlete and trader at a Baltimore firm. This guy is definitely lots of fun.
I was exhausted on Monday and decided to chill out in front of the TV for the night. My 20 minute venture out was a good example of why people really should just shut up sometimes. I headed to the convenience store around the corner for a 6-pack of Sam Adams Summer Ale (my current summer favorite). The guy in line in front of me was buying one of those single cigarettes they keep behind the counter and matches. He glanced at the beer as I sat in on the counter. On my way out he asks if he could join me for a drink. Okay, what kind of pathetic line is that? Let's see, can I have some of the beer you just bought? Yeah, if you pay for it!
I also ventured around to CVS. It's unfortunately that time of the month and I needed supplies. First of all, going to any CVS in the city is annoying with the long lines, nasty workers, and over-priced products. The one in my neighborhood now has a DC police officer at the front counter due to robberies. So, as I handed the cashier my pads, she loudly says: "Looks like a lot of people are having issues today." I looked confused so she pointed to the pads and dropped them in the bag. What?

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Saturday, July 18, 2009

Mega vs. Bolt

Update: The Washington Post has set up its on survey of DC to New York buses today (8/28/09). What's your preference?

I've been taking the bus up to New York from DC to visit family for years now. I love the fact that there are so many more choices now. If I could afford it, I would just take Amtrak because I love the comfort level and not having to worry about traffic. But I still find it ridiculous that Amtrak costs so much. I mean really, does it make any sense that it costs less to go from DC to the Midwest than it does to New York? I especially love the convenience recently of having two bus carriers -Megabus and BoltBus - right up the street from where I live and there are plenty of departure times at all hours. But comfortable? Not so much. I do like the comfort of Washington Deluxe, but the schedule is limited. So, I still haven't found that perfect combination of comfort, convenience (location, schedules, payment methods, etc.), and affordability. Of course, I'm sure I haven't exhausted all possible options though either. I'm curious to know what others think. Do you Mega, Bolt, or do something else to get out of town and why?

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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Late Night Out

The lazy days of summer have been dragging on and rather than stress over what I'm going to do with my life or watch late night public TV cooking shows (I love Lidia's Italy) or my latest Netflix movie (Feast of Love) or search the net, I ventured out. This is new only because I've become somewhat of a hermit lately. Ok, a few days doesn't really count as being a hermit but, whatever.
I hung out with Derek and his service industry friends at the usual Monday spots. But given that I couldn't sleep the night before and fell asleep at 6 in the morning and woke up at 2pm, I was still wide awake even after breakfast at The Diner. What to do? Well, fortunately in DC there is always someplace to go even at 3am. We headed to my new favorite after hours spot where I had the most weird and interesting conversations I've had in a while. It was exactly the kind of fun I needed. I even have a dinner date scheduled for later this week with a rather cute performance artist and have agreed to accompany someone to see The Color Purple at the Kennedy Center. The perfect nightcap? Falling asleep in the early morning light to Michael Franks' Passionfruit CD of course.

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Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The Dating Spectrum

In typical DC spring/summer fashion, the men are out in abundance and I've managed to snag several regular dates. Of course, there is always a story to tell. Out of the three, I'm still seeing just one.
I met Bachelor #1 during the NBA Finals. We had one thing in common - basketball. He was a divorced attorney with a child and lived in the burbs. I managed to miss the boredom because on every date we ended up watching basketball at a place with a TV. I also hoped things would work out because he came from a good family, seemed very stable, and was such a gentleman. I actually thought his nerdiness was kind of cute. It didn't hurt that he played sports in college and had a great body. However (cue circus music), one night he took me to his non-distinct suburban subdivision townhouse and on every, and I mean every wall, was a huge picture of his 7 year old child. There were also pictures on tables and oddly, even drawings in the corner. Some were just of her, and others, of both of them. In addition to the pictures there was an endless stream of toys throughout the house. I literally thought I was in Disney! Yes, I was freaked out. The straw that broke the camel's back? The three huge framed pictures on his nightstand of the child next to his bed. It didn't matter much though since I discovered that there was an erectile dysfunction issue. Oh well.
Bachelor #2 was a little different. Different race and religion and ten years older than me. But I've never let differences stop me when the guy is interesting and nice. Also divorced with a child but the kid happens to be a teenager which makes a huge difference. As it turns out, this guy is an expert in his field and often shows up on political talk shows. Not a lot of physical attraction for me but when you're in your thirties, you learn to get beyond that as you attempt to get to know the person. Our first date involved dinner, drinks, live music, and lots of interesting conversation. He's out of the country for work but has emailed several times and we have plans to go out when he gets back.
Bachelor #3: Cute, bohemian, vegetarian, non-drinker. He told me that he didn't believe in supporting the capitalist system by buying drinks at bars. Need I say more? The fact that I learned he lives in the burbs and has a young child didn't even matter at that point.

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Thursday, July 2, 2009

Love-Hate Relationship

As I mentioned recently, I've been evaluating my life in DC and considering a move. In doing so, I've been thinking a lot about what I love and hate about DC. Here are just a few things I thought of in the past few days:

  • Motorcades. Even after all these years, they're still exciting to me. I love the slow build up as the police clear the street and the long stream of police cars, ambulances, and SUV's with secret service guys hanging out of the windows with guns. And they seem to bring absolute strangers on the street together as we all stand around speculating on who could be in the armored car.

  • The great architecture and lovely little gardens you see in the spring and summer.

  • Diversity of people

  • Constant abundance of new restaurants to check out

  • The fact that DC has increasingly become a hot spot for shooting movies. Last week I stood outside in Adams Morgan with a huge crowd of on-lookers watching a scene from a movie being shot (picture) starring Reese Witherspoon and Paul Rudd. Not a sight you see everyday around here. However, like many others, I could care less about The Real World being filmed here. I can't believe people still watch that stupid show.

  • The numbers of dates with different guys you can go on. Of course, if you're looking for more, this can be kind of negative. It takes me about 3 or 4 dates before I get really bored with the guy anyway and who can knock a free meal.

  • Cab drivers. I've posted about my dislike of cab drivers before. But it's unfortunately hard to live without them, especially when you don't have a car. Some of the things about cabbies that really infuriate me are: telling you they don't have change (how ridiculous!), stopping to ask where you're going before letting you in (they're not even supposed to do that), smoking (also a no-no), and talking on a cell phone without an earpiece (yep, also illegal). Just today I had a cab driver who was filing his fingernails at each light and a few times did not stop doing this when the light turned green!

  • People who wear work badges to happy hour

  • The overabundance of people who have this sense of self-importance because of their job title, place of work, Alma Mater, salary, organizational affiliation, etc.

  • The lack of authentic Asian food in the city

  • The fact that some places tend to draw such stereotypical characters like Teaism, especially the Dupont location. I go there often because I love the food and it can be a tranquil place to eat during slow periods. But that wasn't the case the other day even at 3pm. The place is so small that you just can't help hearing other people's conversations. On one side of me were two "connected" moms, one with her child in a stroller, cackling away about a luncheon given by a woman who runs a foundation. As it turns out, Julia Roberts showed up at the luncheon because of some kind of charity work. The two of these women went on and on about how they were so in awe of her, what she looked like ("I bet she doesn't have any wrinkles") and what kind of mom she seemed to be. On the other side of me was the "intellectual dude" with his laptop and stack of Henry James novels as he proceeded to craft the perfect piece of literature.

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