Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I'm a Sophisticated Lady

I am not a regular theater attendee.  After years of going to plays and feeling dissatisfied, I finally had to admit it:  I don't like the theater.  It's not my thing.  I've tried to like it.  I've attended musicals, classic Shakespearean plays and strange "avant garde" productions.  In fact, I'd given up on the theater. This always makes me feel horribly guilty because DC is a great theater town.  Plus two of my former clients are costume designers and I have a lot of respect for their creative process.   

Last night, I decided to give theater another chance and I attended the production of Duke Ellington's Sophisticated Ladies at the Lincoln Theater on U St.  It was an enchanting evening!

One of the reasons I enjoyed it immensely was the history of seeing a show about Duke Ellington's music at the Lincoln Theater.  I knew that U St. was the "Black Broadway" in the 20's and 30's but seeing it come to life was incredibly cool.  Duke Ellington is from Washington, DC and he played at the Lincoln Theater with many other jazz greats like Ella Fitzgerald and Nat "King" Cole.  Sophisticated Ladies is a history of Duke Ellington's musical career from it's start in the 20's to it's end in the 70's.  It's an amazing chronicle of different musical influences and dances which was very entertaining to watch. 

I knew U St. Corridor was a special place with an interesting history when I moved to the neighborhood in 2007.  Seeing it come alive through Sophisticated Ladies was a wonderful experience that I'll treasure.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Not feelin' it

After the hurly burly of the last couple of weeks, I feeling a little blah today.  It could be because I'm having an allergic reaction to something and my face looks like the main character from "Mask."  I'm wondering how it's going to impact my client meetings this week.  "Why yes! Of course I can help you find the house of your dreams!  Please excuse the strange swelling on the left side of my face." 

Actually, I went to the doctor today and got a prescription for a steroid.  Not only is it swollen and red but it's itchy.  Lovely.  My allergies were really bad last week and I used some eye drops.   The drops did wonders for my eye and the redness but not so much for the rest of my face.  I love having sensitive skin.  I'm truly turning into my Mom who is allergic to everything.  Thanks Mom! 

All kidding aside, I'm sure it'll be fine by this weekend and my client meetings.  It's shaping up to be a busy weekend.  Meanwhile, I'm going to lay low until the steroid takes effect and try not to scratch my face off.  

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Management Companies

*WARNING* rant of epic proportions about to take place:

One of my clients is undertaking the condo document review period in their contract.  That means my client has three days to review the condo docs to make sure there's no strange rules and that the condo association is in the black.  The seller has ten days to deliver condo docs once the contract is ratified.  Some management companies deliver them in one day and some management companies take 20 days.  This management company took almost a month to deliver the docs.  I've called the listing agent weekly to find out WHEN the docs were going to be delivered.  Finally, this week, they were ready.  Hot diggity!   

After looking over the docs, my client had three questions about April's budget.  The questions weren't earth shattering but they were important to my client.  In two areas, a certain amount was budgeted and the association spent thousands more than budgeted.  My client wanted to know why.  In addition, there's some urgency in receiving a response.  My client is going out of town tomorrow for 3 weeks on a work trip and will have limited access to email and phones. 

The listing agent was very helpful and directed us to the association website for the association meeting minutes.  Unfortunately, the minutes from April hadn't been uploaded yet.

Then I called the management company.  I asked them the questions.  They weren't allowed to release the info.  They had "no way to verify that I was representing the buyer."  They needed the current owner of the unit to verify that I was the agent.  Except the current owner of the unit was out of the office for the rest of the day.  I sent an email with my office phone number to verify that I work for L&F.  No response.  I called back.  I spoke to the owner of the company.  He began to yell at me when I asked why he didn't call my office to verify that I was the agent.  He asked me if I had a ratified contract.  I do.  I emailed it to him.  I called back again.  He proceeded to yell more and then hung up on me.  REALLY?  You're the owner of the management company and you just HUNG UP ON ME?  AND YELLED AT ME?  That's helpful and professional behavior.  I'll make sure I recommend your company in the future.   

I AM LIVID.  I've spent an entire day trying to find answers to three questions.  I've had situations like this many times and it's never been this difficult to get answers.  My client has the right to receive answers to these questions.  Why is the management company being such a pain?  I guess I'll find out tomorrow since the management company said they were going to get back to me and then left for the day.  Unbelievable.

Side note:  The management company emailed me five minutes ago with the answers.  OMG.  This ENTIRE episode could have been avoided if they emailed me when I called at 1pm today.  It's time for a glass of wine.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Baby Shower

As I mentioned last week, a bunch of us hosted a baby shower for a good friend.  We had it at my house because twenty-three (!) women were coming and my living area is pretty big by DC standards.  The baby mama (BM) isn't finding out the sex which led to a lot of fun decorating for me.  I'm over the green/yellow theme so I went with hot pink/orange.  We had a Mexican menu because the BM is obsessed with 7 layer dip, quesadillas and margaritas.  Really, she's only obsessed with margaritas but sadly, those were off the menu for her.  Three more months sister..THREE MORE MONTHS. 

Anyway, my whole "theme" evolved from the plates and napkins I found on Jonathan Adler.  Then I saw the adorable lanterns and wah-la...cute baby shower decor.  I am completely obsessed with all things Jonathan Adler.  I would decorate my entire place with his playful furniture and accessories if I weren't such a cheapskate.  I keep hoping I'll hit the lottery so being a cheapskate will no longer be a concern.  A girl can dream.

The baby shower was a rousing success.  The BM loved the decorations, the food and the fact a bunch of friends were able to attend.  It was a lovely afternoon full of wonderful memories.