Open Thread Monday: May 21st Edition

These open threads provide a chance for us to chat with our neighbors. Ask questions, share news, or whatever you want. As long as it’s central to Frederick County and civil, anything goes.

Have at it in the comments!

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22 thoughts on “Open Thread Monday: May 21st Edition

  1. So, we got a mailing from First Energy Solutions asking us to let them bill us for our electricity, which is provided by Potomac Edison. I admit to being confused. If P.E. is providing our power, owns the lines and meters, etc. how then does another company, one that does not own any lines or meters or actually produce/provide any power, offer to bill us at a lower rate for that power? Comcast provides our cable and internet. They own the lines, the boxes, the modem, and they send it all thru their system. Could some other company pop up to tell us that they can bill us for less than Comcast even though they won’t own or operate any part of it?? How about a separate cash register in every grocery store – one that says “Don’t check out at the stores registers, staffed by the stores employees! Come check out at our register and we’ll charge you less!” I’m not signing anything until I understand exactly how this works.

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    • We got a call and a mailing from First Energy Solutions about the same thing. I checked out First Energy Solutions Corp.’s website and I’m still confused about what’s really going on here and what it means for the consumer. For what it’s worth, the website states that First Energy Solutions Corp. is an unregulated subsidiary of First Energy Corp. (noting that it’s NOT the same company). Potomac Edison is one of First Energy Corp.’s “regulated electric utilities.” First Energy Corp.’s pricing is not regulated by the state Public Utilities Commission. While I’m sure this is all background to the “offers” we’ve received, I’m still too dumb to understand what’s at work here and the pros and cons for the consumer.

      Like Gypsy says, I’d never sign up for something like this without understanding exactly what’s going on — can anyone give us the lowdown in plain language?

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      • Buffalo, thx, this is helpful. Clearly there’s a need to compare the numbers, understand the terms and risks, and decide if making the switch is warranted.

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  2. One of their reps knocked on our door in Waterside a few years ago and presented the same “offer”. When I politely declined, he got all shitty and said “Fine, if you want to pay more for your electricity that’s up to you.” I would never do business with a company that uses people like that.

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    • I signed up for the offer that shitty acting rep was offering a few years ago in Waterside and have saved money (significant amounts) on energy credits ever since. It seems sketchy as they are going door to door but it is legitimate.

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      • Energy “credits.” That sends up warning flags right there. It says to me that you’ll get the “reduced rate” in exchange for doing something else but only in exchange for doing something else – – not because they will automatically charge you a lower rate all the time. That’s what I thought. Not playing those games.

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  3. I have researched the savings offered by the door to door salesmen briefy. From what i have found, there will be an intial savings, however, they lock you into at least a 2 year contract. After the intial period (6months, 1 years, etc.) is over, the rates go up and you end up paying more. Search google, there is alot of bad reviews of companies like this. They knock on my door (schifferstadt area) about once a month.

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  4. OK, totally random, but I guess that’s what this post is for. I went to Studio One Hair Salon today in Frederick. (in the shopping center where Safeway is on 7th street) What’s the deal? I mean I was the ONLY one in there. Although the woman did an awesome job on my cut and color it seems as if it’s not as busy as it once was. Granted I think I had only been in there once about 6 years ago.

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    • They used to be real sucessful with business. I used to go in there for facials and massages when I was younger. I think it changed owners and other salons have taken their clients. They did nothing to hold onto them!!

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  5. We’re looking for someone in the Frederick area who does custom slipcovers for chairs. Several folks we have contacted have either not responded or responded and never heard from again. Anyone ?

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  6. Have not tried Poblano, looks inviting though.

    In search for what we thought was a new kabob place on TJ Drive, and could not find anything, we ended up eating at the Greek restaurant that is in the small strip of shops. Cannot recall the name but it is right next door to a Subway.

    Unfortunately, we were not pleased. We got a standard chicken souvlaki and a side order of pita bread with the yogurt sauce. #1, it was expensive. Looking forward to supporting the place, we were hoping for the best, already excited about returning.

    Bummer. Besides being expensive, the chicken was very dry and nothing at all special. Rice was bland. The side order of pita bread with dipping sauce (at least $4, but I believe more), consisted of 1 round of pita cut into fourths. 4 slivers of bread. Very skimpy.

    The yogurt sauce was tasty though. Not tasty enough to make a return visit.

    Does anyone know about a new (?) kabob place here? I swear I had read an advertisement online about them somewhere off of TJ Dr.

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    • The Greek place is called Greek Aroma and I’ve always been very happy with the food there, but, of course, I’ve only ever ordered the gyro sandwich or platter. And, given that gyro meat isn’t usually something that’s made in house, that might not be a great indicator of their other dishes.

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  7. It is fun reading through all of these threads. I have some thoughts to share. If any of you want to go with Solar Panels, we just had some put on our roof and we are very pleased with the company which did it called Solar City. http://www.solarcity.com/Super nice reps, thorough, polite and invested in the company. The employees have the option to have stock in the company so the workers are vested in it. The great thing is that you lease the panels so if something goes wrong they fix them!

    The other item to share is that I finally went to the Greek Festival this past weekend. Amazing food! I stood in line for over 30 minutes waiting for it (ugh) but the people working there are happy and helpful. The music was quite good and very authentic. I sampled some olive oil straight from Sparta Greece and I was in heaven. Brought the kids. Not a lot to do; it’s really mostly about the food but it’s a well oiled machine (no pun intended.) They know what they’re doing and I hear they raise a lot of money. I had no idea that Frederick has such a large Greek population!

    The last bit is a question: I need good quality outdoor jackets for my kids and for me; you know, the REI type of Gortex jackets. I have looked everywhere and to be honest, a place like Burlington Coats has none of these types of coats. I suppose I can try Sports Authority but that seems to be Frederick’s answer to everything. I feel like I have to buy things full price there for lack of finding it anywhere else. Is there an outdoor sports store with jackets and rain pants, etc? Thanks!

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    • As the leader of a hiking/backpacking group who has to constantly refer ladies to outdoor clothing sources…….if you truly want gortex you pretty much have to go to REI, The Trail House, or Sun and Ski (I may have that one wrong – it’s on the Golden Mile next to Joann’s). On the very rare occasion you can find gortex jackets in stores like Marshall’s, Ross’, and TJMaxx, but it is very rare and I can guarantee that there are plenty of other people also watching and waiting for those deals. There’s also The Outfitters in Harpers Ferry, but the prices there are full retail. You can go online to Campmor and Backcountry.com and get great deals, but you’re going to risk buying things that you cannot return. My first gortex lined jacket came from Eastern Mountain Sports in Towson Town Center in 2002 and they’re no longer there – it cost me $130. My current one came from REI on 2007, is their own brand, and cost $120. Gortex-lined ANYTHING is not cheap – ever. Sports Authority is not going to give you any deals, and frankly I find their outdoor clothing choices to be very poor. They’re more focused on gym/spa workout clothing.

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      • I agree with you completely! My last Gortex jacket (which I hear the patent has run out and it is called something else now) was from the REI in College Park vintage 1989 and I still wear the dang thing even though it is stained and the velcro is shredding. Nothing beats the thickness of it and durability. I keep wearing it and think no one will see me and then boom, there I am at school and that’s the day I decided to volunteer…you get the picture. I do use Campmor but as you say, if you have to return something you pay for shipping. (Just did that with a no-seeum net I did not use.) Also I like to see and feel what I am buying if it is soemthing I am going to use a lot and if it is more than $100. So your response confirms that I am right; there are very few outdoor clothing places besides the Trail House here in the Fredrick area. With Sugarloaf and the Catoctins and all of the parks in Frederick County you would think there would be more. I hate to say it but I may have to go down County to find what I need.

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