RANT to gym patrons who plant themselves on the bench or chair of a piece of weightlifting equipment, only to bury their nose in their phone for a seeming eternity, thereby preventing the use of the equipment by those who came to the gym to, you know, actually work out.

RAVE to those who leave their rotting pumpkins, spooky skeletons and other Halloween decorations up well past their pull date into December. For others this might well be cause for a rant — but the way I see it, at least those folks who cling stubbornly (lazily?) to Halloween are celebrating something!

RANT to Italian sodas. When I was a kid, I thought you were the fanciest drink around, but now I realize you’re just a sugary syrup drink gussied up with some bubbles. I’m onto you!

RAVE to the reflective-vest-clad pedestrian who was waiting to cross at the light on Broadway in Everett. This person was a standout exception to the myriad darkly attired pedestrians along the same route, many of whom choose to jaywalk — a truly risky behavior in the dark and rainy months of winter.

RANT to this new “sourdough bagel” situation that has to be stopped in its tracks. Sourdough is terrible, it’s right there in the name. If you ask for sourdough, that’s your business, but this new trend of making bagels sourdough and springing it on innocent bystanders is a travesty. Bagels do not have sour anything (I don’t think, I have never made a bagel), but if sourdough was a real bagel thing, we would have known it by now. 

RAVE to the building construction surrounding my apartment. Thanks to the constant early construction noise, I now don’t need a morning alarm! It’s also a pleasure to close down the streets so I can take a longer, more scenic, route to work. I’m already craving that secondhand cigarette smoke tomorrow morning too!

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RANT to the murders of crows around the city! They tear up the green spaces in our public parks whilst digging for the invasive grubs. My walks through our formerly lovely public lawns now leave my feet caked in mud and create an unsightly view from afar. And they’ve started to attract seagulls! Go back to the telephone wires! 

RAVE to everyone out there struggling to love and train reactive difficult dogs. I see you. We have one too. Don’t be embarrassed by inevitable mistakes and outbursts. Loving and helping a dog with “issues” is a long-term project with lots of challenges and also lots of rewards. Keep trying! Things will get better.

RANT AND RAVE Rant to used furniture left at the curb marked “free.” Why not mark it “soaked” or “warped” or “probably no bedbugs?” Rave to the Buy Nothing movement. Give it a try and get to know your neighbors.