Wednesday’s TPS Report: ‘Shrunken Simone’ Cardigan

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.

Tory Burch 'Shrunken Simone' CardiganNordstrom’s Half-Yearly Sale has officially begun — I’ll be doing a fuller report later today, but for today’s TPS I really like this Tory Burch classic, the “shrunken Simone” cardigan. I’ve admired the Simone cardigan almost since beginning the blog, and season after season it returns, maybe in a slightly new iteration (such as the “shrunken” look here). I think it looks like the perfect cotton cardigan for summer, and the Half-Yearly Sale is a great time to pick it up at 33% off. Was $225, now marked to $149.90 — available in 6 colors but sizes are going fast! Tory Burch ‘Shrunken Simone’ Cardigan


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  1. Early threadjack! I just received a bright yellow skirt and a royal blue skirt as gifts. I would not usually choose these colors, but I like the change! My question is: what colors work with these two colors. For yellow, I am thinking navy and grey. For blue, I am thinking black and creme. What else would work? I don’t want to be boring! Thanks ladies!

    • Second verse! Same as the first!

      Well…cobalt and royal blue both go well with bright yellow, and the reverse, so we can start there.

      And creme would go well with the yellow as well, as would tan/beige in the summer. Also fun black and white patterns (like a polka dot) or the stripes that are so in right now. Or even eggplants or rubies or berries to bring it into the fall.

      As for the blue — I have a cobalt skirt I treat almost as a neutral. I think white, black, green, yellow, purple, grey, yellow would all work nicely. I’d maybe avoid most navies, only because I think the two blues might be weird.

    • Former MidLevel :

      I think those are great choices. I also like royal blue and yellow together (that’s what I’m wearing today). Other colors I’d pair with yellow: purple, teal, hot pink. With royal blue: orange, purple. I find that when mixing brights, it often helps to anchor the outfit with a neutral print – e.g., a black and white blouse, blue cardigan and yellow skirt.

    • if you are feeling especially colorful, you could also try burgundy or deep purple with your bright yellow.

  2. I’ve wanted one of these for a long time but am supposed to be on a shopping ban since I’m TTC. Resist . . . . resist . . . resist.

    On another note, did anyone notice that woman’s legs in the picture of the pink cardigan? Good Lord.

  3. Anon. for This :

    I need some help! I have several friends who have recently had babies (between 3-6 months). I don’t mind holding/talking about/playing with kids, but my “motherly” instinct has not kicked-in yet. I am not a huge “baby person” and have never been one to swoon over kiddos. What is the proper baby etiquette? Should I wait for the mom’s to ask if I want to hold their baby? Will I be perceived as rude if I don’t offer to hold the baby? How much baby-talk is enough? I love these ladies and their kids, and I want them to know I am interested in their lives. I just need to know how much is expected of me for them to know that I care. Thanks ladies!

    • As a new mom (8 month old) it is no biggie if you don’t ask to hold the baby – just don’t leave the poor momma to be standing for a long time holding her little one (example – when I took my baby to visit the office when he was 6 wks old, everyone wanted to see us and chat, but no one said “hey have a seat” or offered to hold my baby…pretty sure I felt like I was going to pass out after hours of standing and holding him :)).
      And new mommas welcome talk that isn’t about baby, but just be sensitive to the fact that for them, new baby is probably the center of their world right now and it probably is their biggest source of conversation material.
      Asking how they are doing and how their little one is doing is enough. In fact, they will probably welcome a “how are YOU doing, how about WE going to do something together, just us girls!”

    • Good question! I’m okay with older kids who you can interact with, but for really little babies it feels like you coo over them a bit and then what? The parents so often seem to be waiting for you to do something and god if I know what.

    • You just have to do whatever you’re comfortable with. I doubt if the moms are going to be offended if you’re not cooing or hands-on. Honestly, I love toddlers, but babies to me are a bit boring because they’re not very interactive. Everybody is different so don’t overthink it. Just be yourself.

    • First of all, I think that you will discover that not everyone is a “baby person” (i have no notion of what the percentages are) — so you will be far from the only person who doesn’t immediately ask to hold the new mom’s baby. In fact, some mom’s may even welcome this — since some mom’s worry every baby pass means possible colds caught or cry’s activated. :-P

      Now — presuming that your friends have met you before — they probably have already figured out that you aren’t a “baby person.” Having a baby hasn’t erased their memory. And having a baby hasn’t erased their personality or previous life experiences. So talk to them about what you talked about before. Mothers of 3-6 month olds will (as anon… above pointed out) probably love the opportunity to talk about stuff that isn’t their babies sleeping habits. :-P Now, you may have to talk about baby adjacent stuff, like the difficulties of settling back into work after maternity leave or surviving sleep deprivation, but those are life experiences everybody can share, in a way (we’ve all gone on vacation or prolonged sick leave or whatever).

      Anyway…its good to think about. But try to remember that becoming a mom doesn’t mean your friends stop being your friends. That will probably help guide you to the right course.

    • so anonymous :

      I would just smile and hold the darn baby. It shows support for the mother by helping her out for a few minutes. It’s also good for babies to be held by different people. Stop thinking about how it makes you feel and help out your friend. I find this whole ick! babies! thing to be self-centered.

      • Anon. for This :

        Perhaps I didn’t phrase my question correctly. I am 100% okay helping out my friends who are new moms. I have talked more about sleep cycles and nap time and cloth diapers than I ever thought possible, which is fine. I have also held their babies when asked if I wanted to. Not being a mom though, I am not sure if moms like it when people offer to hold their babies or if they would rather be the one to offer (see TCFKAG’s commenet re: catching colds). I am slowly learning what each of my friend’s prefer, but just wanted some insight from the hive regarding the whole situation since I don’t know how it feels to be a mom.

        • If it helps, as an adult, I’ve had to work hard to resist my urge to immediately ask to hold every baby within a 50-yard radius of me. :-) I had no idea that this was a bit of a faux pas, so now I wait until the baby is held by other people first or else if the mommy offers or if she seems like she needs to do something else. But, yeah, some of it is kind of unspoken signals from the mom or dad.

          • It’s a cultural thing. I come from a pass-the-baby-around-the-room culture and was horrified when a friend in NJ told me she only lets “family and close friends she knows are clean” hold her baby.

        • You phrased your question just fine. I think someone brought her own baggage to the conversation.

        • I don’t really think it matters. If you don’t want to hold the baby, don’t ask. I never asked people if they wanted to hold the baby because I didn’t want to put anyone in the position of feeling uncomfortable. People who wanted to hold him were very quick to ask and I was never offended if someone didn’t ask!

          • new york associate :

            Same. I never asked people if they wanted to hold the baby because I didn’t want to presume anything, but I was delighted when people asked me if they could hold the baby! I was never offended if no one asked.

            I think that even if you don’t hold the baby, there are lots of ways to show support — I loved it when people looked at the baby and said something specific, like, “Her eyes are just beautiful,” or “She’s so alert for a 2-month old!” or “I love the way she kicks.” Ultimately, parents just want to hear that they are doing a good job and the baby is turning out beautifully. Everything else is gravy :)

      • Anonsensical :

        Nothing in the OP’s says, “ick! babies!” to me. In fact, I think it’s sweet that she’s seeking advice on how to make sure her friends who are new moms know she cares about them even though she’s never been all that interested in babies. She’s *not* just thinking about how she feels, and she’s *asking* how best to “help out” her friends. Yeesh.

      • Honestly, I’d rather be the one to offer (see: germs). And I didn’t get an “ick! babies!” vibe at all from your post. I think the comment above is unnecessarily harsh – some people don’t feel comfortable holding babies and if that’s the case, it’s easier for you to politely decline than to awkwardly fumble around while holding my child.

        For a point of reference, my husband has three brothers and none of them have held their nephew because they don’t feel comfortable doing so yet. No biggie.

        • Thanks for confirming this.

          I’m not anti-baby (I think they’re plenty cute), but I don’t have any, and especially infants, I’m concerned about A) getting the wee one sick or B) breaking someone else’s child or C) having the kid suddenly burst into hysterical crying when s/he is handed to childless me.

          That said – if one of my mom friends has ever asked for me to hold a child while they say, fish in their purse for keys, a phone, etc., I’ve never turned them down. I just don’t volunteer to hold babies for the reasons stated above.

          • If it starts crying, give it back. Done.

            My SIL wanted every family member to wash their hands before holding my nephew. A little bit crazy, but not terrible. He was worth it. :)

      • Most of my co-workers (and their partners) who bring their babies into work are pretty clear that they don’t want us to hold them, but also feel obligated if someone insists. So I don’t think this is one size fits all.

      • Really?

    • Good question. As a mom of a new baby (12 weeks yesterday..where has the time gone?!), I completely understand if my childless friends feel uncomfortable holding a baby or interacting with him. Until I had mine, I felt awkward holding babies that couldn’t entirely support their head, too. And if you don’t offer to hold him, I won’t be offended. Even if I offer for you to hold the baby and you say no, I won’t be offended.

      As for conversation, TCFKAG is spot-on. I was dying for normal conversation that wasn’t about the status of my baby’s diapers. Just try to talk about all the stuff you used to talk about.

    • I’m not a baby person, so when my extremely close friend had a baby, I kept my hands busy while visiting. I chatted with her while cooking supper, folded a couple loads of laundry, played with her dog, etc. I did hold her baby while she ate, but keeping busy doing other things worked pretty effectively. That said, this mostly works with close friends when visiting at their homes.

    • The only time I think you “should” offer to hold a baby is when you’re out or visiting and the mom is attempting to do something one handed and struggling. And you don’t even need to hold the baby — you could dig in the diaper bag for the bottle, or hold the baby. And that’s not about liking to hold babies, that’s just being a friend.

      Personally, when I had my son, lots of my friends didn’t have kids yet, and didn’t really offer to hold him, and I didn’t really care. I wouldn’t have before I had him.

    • Two friends recently had babies, and SO and I brought them lunch and either held the baby or checked on her as she napped while the parents ate. They seemed to appreciate it immensely!

      • Mousekeeper :

        I was the last of my siblings to have children, and my brother had six, there were always babies around as I veered toward and into adulthood. I thought they were cute, but I was always afraid to hold them because I was afraid they would cry and their mom would think I was doing something wrong. It wasn’t actually until I had my own kids that I felt truly comfortable holding babies. You can smile, hold their little hand, and generally be in awe of how remarkable baby humans are (I’m a sucker for babies of all creatures, great and small). Your friends will appreciate your paying attention to the baby without your offering to hold him/her, unless you sense that the mom/dad could use a break and just have their hands free for a little while. If you do hold the baby, just keep moving – rocking, swaying, walking. All babies find that soothing.

    • One thing that others have not mentioned — many new moms want/need you to wash your hands before holding the baby. Wipes, hand sanitizer, etc. are usually ok, some want a full wash.

      I thought it was a little nutty at first, but then I thought “subway hands + one month old” = not good. Help the baby not get sick, you know?

    • I am like you but maybe more extreme. I don’t “get” babies. I don’t want to hold them and generally try to keep at least an 8 foot radius between “it” and myself.

      Luckily, the only time I’m around babies is when there are lots of other people around who want to hold the baby. If the mom offers the baby to me, I usually say “I think I might be coming down with something, I think [insert name] wouldn’t mind taking him/her for a few minutes.”

      I had a friend who knew I don’t like babies. She tried to force the baby on me and I put my hands up and backed away. Yeah, we aren’t friends anymore.

      • Blonde Lawyer :

        I don’t dislike babies – I just get serious anxiety about holding them. Not really sure why. They just seem so fragile and I’m just so clumsy!

  4. Morning Preparation Fail

    I go through the trouble of packing a really great lunch for myself. And what do I do? I leave it on my kitchen countertop because DH asked me a question (“should I bring an umbrella?”) which interrupted my train of thought. I’m glad it’s just a lunch, although I’m sad the food will probably have gone bad by the time I get home.

    This memory-routine lapse is scary though, because there’ve been some studies about how people do things like leave their babies in their cars (for several hrs, leading to the babies’ deaths) because something disrupted their routine and they just plain forgot.

    From the motherhood (or not) threads of a few weeks back, I’m glad I’m not of the baby-making mindset. Because I’m terrified that I’d do something idiotic like this. If DH and I ever decide we want kids, we’ll adopt a teenager (mostly because I think they’d be the ones that need the most guidance and yet are the hardest to get adopted.) Not easy, certainly, but a scrappy, mouthy teenager is not likely to get left strapped into a car!

    • long time lurker :

      If I don’t write myself a post-it note, send myself an email, or put it in my Outlook calendar, I routinely forget things. I just get very caught up in what’s going on and have a lot of balls in the air. I will leave stickies on the front door that say things like “briefcase” “laptop” “bills to mail” etc so I do not leave the house without those things on days they are needed.

      I hear you on the kid thing. It’s just me and SO and I have all these issues keeping track of stuff. Adding a baby to the mix would be scary.

      • Baby carseat tip :

        For those who do have babies and have an overwhelming fear (as I did) of forgetting your kid in the car, here is a tip I read a long time ago that is a great one.
        Get in the habit of leaving your workbag and purse in the backseat right in the foot section of where your baby’s car seat is. Then you will have to open the back door to get it and you’ll be able to see if you somehow accidentally left baby in the car.
        But once they are older and talk, it will be hard to not notice. :)

    • SpaceMountain :

      My husband’s mother once forgot about him in the grocery store and drove away while he was running behind the car trying to get her attention. His siblings (already in the car) thought it was hilarious.

      • My mother full on WENT HOME, leaving my sister in the grocery store when she was about 5.

        • I’m laughing, even though I know I shouldn’t. I think it’s nervous laughter from disaster-averted. Although, I think SpaceMountain’s DH’s siblings were laughing because they thought it was a game, or, because it’s part of the job description of being a sibling. :-)

      • My mother left my newborn baby brother under the table at McDonald’s. I guess my sister and I were chattering on and she completely forgot him. He still jokes about being raised by the Hamburglar.

      • Both of my parents forgot me at daycare once. (They each thought the other was getting me). If memory serves, a neighbor had to bail them out and come get me — one of the emergency contacts in my file — when I was still there after all the other kids had been picked up. :-P

        • I think I was 10 or so when my entire family accidentially left me at a town jubilee/parade. I had been marching in the parade with the honor band, and my parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles each thought the other one had me! I had to walk about a mile to the nearby grocery store to use a payphone. That was back when it was 10 cents :)

          I was so irritated at all of them, but they were all totally freaked out. Tiny town, no possible danger, so no big deal but I still bring it up every once in a while. (“hey, remember that one time when you all left me in the middle of town?)

        • I got forgotten about at orchestra practice freshman year of high school. I called home (from a payphone! anybody remember those? :)) and my dad answered at home “Oh, I guess you aren’t here, are you? I’ll come pick you up. Hey, where are your brothers?”

        • One thought–maybe getting forgotten made us the awesomely strong independent women that we now are! :)

      • My parents forgotten me at some play area at Disney World. I was about 10. I was with my parents, my dad’s brother and his wife and kids. My mom and my aunt went off to some shops and I stayed at the play area with dad, uncle, and cousins. Cousins were ready to leave so dad and uncle left too, thinking I was with mom and aunt. The men got to the store and realized I was not with the women and dad and uncle went running back (with my 5 year old cousin running behind them). Thankfully I did the right thing and stayed put until they came back (it wasn’t more than a few minutes). My mom laughed about that incident for YEARS afterwards.

    • Sometimes I feel that way too. i worry I would be a bad/forgetful mom. But then I see a video like the one going around where parents PUT THEIR BABY IN A WASHING MACHINE AND IT TURNED ON and I’m like you know what, I’m going to be a fine mom.

      • Ding ding ding. :) I know I can afford the type of therapy my kids will need as a result of my parenting fails and its all first world problems type stuff. Not “my parents were drunk/high/absent/jeopardized my basic physical safety.”

    • From what I’ve read, the “baby left in car” thing usually happens when the driver/adult is not doing their usual routine, i.e. someone else usually drops baby off at daycare.

      Don’t worry, if you have a kid, you’re going to be amazed at the stuff you can do.

    • I hear ya on that fear — no babies here (occasionally thinking about it). Last night I had a dream that I left a baby (my baby?) in the car when I went to the gym for over an hour.

    • In addition to what everyone else has said, there are alarms you can put in your car that alert you if you’ve left someone or something in the backseat after locking the car doors. I’m sure you’d be a perfectly fine mom. :)

  5. East Coast Vacation :

    My husband recently found out that he has to take his vacation time the last week July. Not a horrible problem to have, but we definitely would have planned ahead more if we knew this was coming up. We want to go somewhere for a few days after a wedding in Pittsburgh. We are totally open at this point to anything on/along the East Coast. Any suggestions? Any places you ladies love? Thanks!

    • What kind of things are you looking for? City to explore? Beaches? Hiking? Shopping? Museums? What is your budget and how far from Pittsburgh are you willing to go and how long do you have?

      • East Coast Vacation :

        This doesn’t help a whole lot, but we are up for anything. We love the city, the beach, and the country. We have about 5 days (Sunday night through Thursday) and the max drive time would probably be about 11 hours. As far as the budget: probably no more than $250 a night for a hotel since the in-laws may be coming and we will have to pay for 2 rooms.

        • Have you spent much time in Boston? What about a couple of nights in Boston, and then the rest of the time on Cape Cod? I really like Woods Hole and Falmouth, and that would make for an easy day trip to Martha’s Vineyard, although we stayed with my in-laws in Hyannis a few summers ago, and that is closer to Provincetown and the Cape Cod National Seashore. If you end up on the Cape, highly recommend Inaho for sushi (it’s around Hyannis).

          • Hyannis is really far from Pittsburgh. That’s a lot of driving. I think the closest option for the ocean would be Delaware/Maryland or the Jersey Shore (there are nice places on the Jersey Shore). Cleveland and Buffalo are both closer cities on Lake Erie. Canada is about 3.5 hours and Toronto, ON is 1.5 hours past that (total of 5). Toronto is on Lake Ontario. There’s also the Finger Lakes in the western part of New York.

        • Niagara Falls/Buffalo, NY or The Poconos. Going all the way to the east coast is going to take at least 6-7 hours each way.

          • I agree with this suggestion. Buffalo is fewer than four hours away from Pittsburgh, and there is plenty to see and do around there, especially if you like wine.

        • I would recommend the Finger Lakes region of NY. I think it is about 6 hours from Pittsburgh. It is beautiful up there during the summer time. The Seneca wine trial is probably the best, but there are many other wineries scattered among the lakes. Geneva and Skaneateles are cute towns. So is Ithaca. There are a lot of hiking trails to explore. Also, in Ithaca there are trails that take you down into the gorges. You can even swim under waterfalls.

          • I second this too. My SO and I just got back from a weekend trip to Skaneateles. The driving was totally doable from Pittsburgh, and the town was adorable. Lots of lake, food, outdoors, and wine activities here, too!

          • new york associate :

            Plus you can go to Seneca Falls, home of the Women’s Rights museum, and explore lots of dying/reviving upstate New York small towns. Do you have kids? The Play Museum in Rochester is amazing — actually, it’s amazing even if you don’t have kids, but want to check out their vintage toy collection.

        • I love Avalon, NJ if you want a relaxing beach getaway. It’s at the southern end of NJ (about 2.5 hours from Philly), so away from the Jersey Shore type crowds. You should be able to rent a 2br condo for the week (even if you’re only using five days) for less than it would cost for two hotel rooms at $250 a night.

    • Have you considered Chicago? Not on the East Coast, but approximately an 8 hour drive. DC is a 5 hour drive, but late July is going to be sweltering. Philly is sub-6 hours, Charlottesville, VA is about 5.5 hours, and Virginia Beach is about 8 hours.

      There are a few really big national forests by Pittsburgh, if you were interested in camping/hiking.

    • Martha’s Vineyard. It’s fantastic and doesn’t have to be expensive.

      • It would take a full day to get to Martha’s Vineyard from Pittsburgh (11 hours of driving, not counting Route 3 traffic and then the ferry. And then another full day to get back to Pittsburgh.

    • Cape May. Not too bad a drive from Pittsburgh and NOT “Joisey Shoah” types (go to Wildwood for that).

      • Plus you can take the ferry from Cape May to Lewes, which is also a cute bayside town. It’s like two vacations in one! ;)

      • I do the Pittsburgh to Cape May thing every year for the family beach vacation, and it’s not too bad. The drive is about 8 hrs total, and the worst part is the boring interminable Pennsylvania Turnpike, which is ~6ish hrs. Cape May is a lovely town, full of beautiful Victorian houses and boasting some great restaurants. The crowd is mostly families and couples (there are some loveky B&Bs), and clean beaches. As the poster above noted, the orange, fist pumping crowd is minimal, thankfully.

      • Alanna of Trebond :

        I love Cape May. Another beach town that I love also in New Jersey (am unsure if it is further away or closer to Pittsburgh) is Mantoloking–really lovely place with beautiful beaches. The problem with all northern beaches is that the water is cold, though.

      • Third Cape May. My family has been going there for years. It’s a hidden gem. Quaint, and a beautiful beach.

        You could also do West Virginia. You can get to Canaan Valley or the Monongahela National Forest easily from Pittsburgh. Lots of history and stunning outdoors hiking/camping. Even whitewater rafting.

      • Fourth Cape May. Or if Cape May is booked up — Spring Lake, also on the New Jersey shore, and also delightful.

    • Also in Academia :

      If you are not committed to an actual coastal/beach location, might I suggest West Virginia? If you enjoy rural settings, hiking, rivers, etc, it could really work. Lovely scenery and there are many state parks that are really more like resorts. Pittsburgh is quite close to north central West Viriginia, but even by driving a few hours you can be in the central part of the state or, in just a couple of hours more, the southern part of the state. Places to check out include Seneca Rocks (beautiful, a little rugged, camping is good but hotels that I recall staying in there were on the motel side of things) the Greenbrier/Lewisburg area (farther south — major resort, plus just a beautiful area of the state), Pipestem State Park (in the very southern tip, a great resort-type park with hiking, a tram, 2 lodges, camping, cabins, horseback riding, archery, indoor and outdoor pools, mini golf, etc). This native WV-er highly recommends all of these options if these settings float your boat!

      • MissJackson :

        I’m in Pittsburgh and I was going to suggest this as well. It’s really a nice quick drive, and West Virginia is indeed “wild and wonderful.”

      • Mousekeeper :

        On that note (bad pun buried in here), google “Crooked Road tour” AND Virginia” . If you both love bluegrass/old timey music, this is a tour sponsored by the Virginia Dept. of Tourism that sends you on a tour of places you can hear such traditional music plus places to stay. The tour starts midway down Virginia’s western border and then heads east along the border with North Carolina. The Washington Post wrote an article about it a couple of years ago. I’ve never been because I’m the only person in my family who likes that music.

      • I was just scrolling down to suggest West Virginia. In addition to the places Also in Academia mentioned, Harper’s Ferry has a cool National Historic Park. Another option would be a loop through WV and across MD to Baltimore, perhaps with a stop at Gettysburg on your return trip.

    • A drive through Maryland along the Chesapeake, on the way to Ocean City? The route gives you options to stop in Baltimore, Annapolis and DC.

    • Accountress :

      St. Augustine, FL or Charleston, SC or Savannah, GA are all lovely- can you tell I love the really old historic areas? :)

  6. Does anyone know what the deal is with the Talbots website? They seem to have stopped using photos of plus size models to illustrate the plus size clothing. If this is a permanent thing, I will be really disappointed. :(

    • Geezer e t t e :

      Oh, wow, I hadn’t noticed that, and I’d just been to the Talbots website yesterday. Perhaps a cost-cutting move? I agree — it’s helpful to see the clothes on plus-size models!

    • Super annoyed by this. I’m going to go on their facebook page to complain.

    • I just wish they showed the back of the clothes. I need to see the back before I buy something.

      Learned this the hard way when I bought a blouse impulsively because I liked the front, it was a great price, and I was in a rush, only to find a massive exposed bronze zipper in the back. I kept it, but it has limited my options on where to wear it.

      But yes, I’d be disappointed if the plus size models were gone too.

  7. I know we’ve talked about nail polish a lot before, but I still need a bit of advice. I’m starting a new job on Tuesday in a conservative workplace. I had an OPI gel manicure done a few days ago, and it’s bright fuchsia – for some reason, when I had it done, I neglected to consider it as my “first day of work” manicure. Anyway, should I start a new job with a fuchsia manicure? Or should I just schedule an appointment to have it removed and redone in a more modest color? Thanks, ladies!

    • I don’t think fuscia is too wild of a color. Pink is a fairly standard manicure color. If everything else was conservative, and you feel comfortable with the nails (I say this because I don’t usually paint my nails and I tend to make weird gestures and stare at my flailing colorful hands when I have polish on — I love it, but I’m not used to it and probably act like a weirdo/eight-year old), I think its fine. I am almost positive that some women in even the most conservative workplaces wear bright polish.

    • I would get it redone, sorry.

      • I would get it redone if you are going to be worried about it. I’d rather be comfortable on my first day and not self-conscious about my nails. On the other hand, if you are confident you won’t be thinking about it and believe it’s appropriate for your new office – go for it!

      • really? I cant imagine getting it redone in this situation.

        • Yes, I would be dressing pretty conservatively on my first day at any new job, but especially in a conservative office. It’s also just not that big of a deal to change it, so if it was something that I was undecided about, I would just get it redone in advance so I didn’t end up doubting myself the night before my first day and trying to get the polish off myself at 2 am.

          • I realize that my comment came off as a bit snarky, but it was not meant that way. However, what struck me — and what i was trying to express — is the amount of time many women (myself included) spend obsessing about small things like this.

            I love fashion and I always like to look put together and appropriate. Im sure many other women reading this do too. I know that making a good first impression is important and that we cannot change how other people think (i.e., i recall 10+ years ago in law school being floored that someone could care whether we wore a skirt or pant suit to an interview, so long as we looked put together), however, it seems like one could use her time to worry about substantive things or to do something constructive (but not causing worry) rather than to be concerned over the color of one’s well-manicured nails, the height or color of one’s otherwise classic pumps, or the length of one’s sleeves or slacks. thats all.

    • Former MidLevel :

      I think fuchsia is fine–as long as your nails aren’t crazy long, pointed, bedazzled, etc.

    • As long as its not highlighter pink, I don’t see the problem. It’s JUST nailpolish (says the person wearing dark purple polish with a shimmery topcoat).

    • I think it’s fine as long as your outfit is modest and neutral. Your nails will be an accent like jewelry.

    • So I don’t think its a huge deal. But if it was me, I would get it redone. I just like everything to be as good as possible the first day, you know? Like I don’t usually get manicures, but I always get them before my first day of an internship or job. So if your thinking about it (which you are since you posted) I would prob get them redone. That way you don’t have a nagging voice in your head going “i wish i didn’t get fuchsia” on the first day.

    • Whatever you do, don’t add neon green tips for a high-contrast French manicure.

      If you’re self-conscious about the color, then change it. Otherwise, I think you’re good.

    • Some gel manicures can be painted over with normal nail polish, if you want to give it a shot. Gelish holds up fine, as long as you use an acetone-free polish remover when you want to remove the polish.

    • If you feel uncomfortable with it, you should get it taken off. No matter the opinions here, it is going to be you with those nails on your first day of work. But if you love the color and you feel comfortable with them, I say go for it!

      However, if the night before you all of a sudden decide to you want to take it off, I recently did a post on how to take off a gel manicure at home. Please don’t try to peel it off – you’ll take off parts of your nails, too.

    • Thanks so much! I think I will get it redone, simply to save myself from continuing to worry about it and so I can instead focus on enjoying my week off and make more important preparations for my first day!

  8. reluctant camper :

    I have a question about how you plan trips with your SO. I am more organized, have a better memory, and generally prepare further in advance for things than my SO. He likes camping and backpacking much more than I do, but I am willing to go along on short trips and I encourage him to take longer trips with friends that are really into it (although I don’t know if that will happen for him this summer, due to his planning skills).

    I am having trouble figuring out how to deal with planning these overnights that I am not really all that into. If this is a trip that he wants to do, I want him to figure out the details and get whatever food, etc. we need in advance (he also knows what he’s doing and has more free time than I do). But then I feel guilty because I know that things that I plan are more likely to happen, and when he plans, the trip might happen, but he does things so last minute that it won’t necessarily be enjoyable for me because I’ll be worried about forgetting things (happened the last time we went backpacking) as we’re trying to run out the door.

    Advice for how to handle this?

    • National Lampoon's Camping Trip :

      Your husband might be a polygamist, because I’m married to him too.

      After the last faux pas, where he simply didn’t plan and we showed up at our campsite with all our food, wood, etc. and no utensils or cooking implements (15 miles from the nearest store)…
      We have made a “camping list”. It is a bullet point list that has everything we need to pack. He has to get it, pack it and check it off before I will leave the house. He likes it because he doesn’t have to ‘plan’. The basic camping list is identical no matter where you go – we have columns for cold weather/hot weather, but it’s pretty much the same list every time. It’s saved on our computer and he prints it off and checks it off every time.
      I don’t like it as much (I feel like everyone should just take care of themselves), but I’d rather feel that way than fight and/or eat eggs I’m trying to hardboil by putting them in the sand next to our fire.
      We also have a “camping schedule”. It’s just three columns (we don’t camp longer than 2 nights) and if there is an activity planned, it has to be listed there and I ask him what equipment is needed – i.e. want to swim? suit, towel, sandals.

      • National Lampoon's Camping Trip :

        I just realized you said SO. Maybe you’d better check that he’s not married, because again I claim he is my husband. :)

      • reluctant camper :

        The list is a great idea. It is how he gets out the door each morning with his ID/wallet/cell phone/keys. The last time we went, he brought the gas that had the connection for the stove he left at home, so we couldn’t use the stove.

        And I said SO, but he is my husband, so maybe we share a husband.

      • Geezer e t t e :

        We have such a list for beach trips — one for a day trip and one for trips when we’re renting a beach house or condo. It really does make planning and packing easier.

    • Am I your husband?

      Forgetting things isn’t the end of the world. :-) Haha. But seriously, I agree with National Lampoon, help your husband develop a “to-do” list — but expect him to execute it. And if you don’t have something, then he gets to make the run to the store. ;-)

    • I feel like this is everyone’s husband/SO. Most men just can’t plan as well and they want to be “spontaneous” which just means they will forget things or will not have as good of a trip as they otherwise would. How does your husband manage when he goes on trips with his friends?

      • reluctant camper :

        From the stories he tells, he barely survives. The weird thing to me is that he’s often the one that is sick/injured/helpless, but it does not deter him (like the time his friends had to leave him in a car with a high fever while they went off in search of tire chains).

      • I think most men can plan just fine. They just surround themselves with friends/SOs/wives who enable them by doing the work for them. On the other hand, not doing it for them will change the behavior of only some of these folks because some legitimately have a higher tolerance for sh!t breaking, missing food, missing utensils, and other crap.

        It’s like the PigPen Roommate & the OCD Clean Roommate. PigPen just has a higher tolerance for dirt, so OCD’s not doing any cleaning will harm OCD’s well-being more than it will PigPen.

        Separate vacations?

    • Legal Marketer :

      My husband is a lot like this, too. I have figured out that part of the reason is that he is very busy and has a lot on his mind (don’t we all) but the main part is that he is just so laid-back and easy-going about this stuff. He figures it’s a vacation, so if he gets there and doesn’t have the camp stove, he’ll just eat PB&J. He doesn’t ever let it bother him. (He’s also pretty resourceful, so sometimes he’s able to find a workaround or a place to buy the missing items.) If he planned to go hiking, but didn’t do any research on the trails and finds they’re closed, he’ll be just fine napping under a tree or lying on a beach.

      I’m like you, in that I want things to be planned, organized and packed, but sometimes I just try to go with the flow, like him. Other times, when he’s already in the car waiting for me and I’m walking out the door and notice his phone and sunglasses on the counter, I just grab them for him.

      But not every time. Once in a while, I let the wallet sit. I think sometimes they get too used to us (or at least in my situation) making sure everything is taken care of.

      So my suggestions are to consider just not planning (and not feeling guilty about it) and eventually he’ll realize if he wants it to happen, he has to do it, and then try not to let the lack of organization bother you.

    • I’m am super organized mostly because I would be just like your husband without tons of lists. I have a camping list, with one page for stuff to bring every time that can stay packed up in our tent trailer, and another page for things that may change (mostly food & clothes). Before we had a trailer, we just kept totes of everything in the garage. Most of the camping stuff is either old stuff from the house (pots & pans) or cheap things from Ross, Walmart, etc. Now all we have to do is get food and pack clothes. It has been a total life saver!

      • National Lampoon... :

        Oooh, good idea! As a frequent camper, there’s a lot we could just put in a tote.

      • I second the idea of lists and a pre-packed tote. (But make sure, after a trip, to sort the tote and clean and dry everything thoroughly before putting it back in the tote.)

        But yes – make him organize the trip, but don’t agree to go unless everything is planned out ahead of time. If he and his buddies want to rough it/be spontaneous, it doesn’t mean you have to.

  9. This question makes me sound like a social dud, which maybe I am! When meeting someone for coffee (or similar situation), what is proper etiquette? Should I get my drink, find a good table, and keep my eye open for my friend/colleague. Or should I wait awkwardly by the door until they come so we can wait in line together? Or should I find a table, wait until they come, leave something at the table to save it, and get in line with them? Or something totally different? I am usually the first one to arrive and feel awkward doing anything but the first option, but I can’t help but feel that it is rude. You ladies are great with this kind of stuff!

    • Coffee lover :

      I guess this depends on how busy the place is and how well you know the person.

      If its slow enough and there are tables available, I’d find a table and wait until they get there. Then get in line with them and get a different table once you’ve gotten your drink.

      If its really crushingly busy and you know the person well, I might text them to see what they want and grab it for them first? Otherwise, I’d still wait and just grab it with them. Otherwise, you run into the awkwardness of finishing your coffee before your friend even gets there.

    • I don’t know about etiquette, but if I was meeting you and you got there first, I would love it if you got your coffee and grabbed a table. I always get edgy in eating establishments where I am not sure if I will be able to sit. I’d rather wait in line alone than have to hover about waiting for a table. To be polite, I would ask you if you wanted anything else while I was waiting in line to get my coffee.

      • Another option is to get your coffee and a table and then when the person comes in, offer to get in line and get theirs as they get settled in at the table. I think this is a polite gesture and then they can choose if they want to wait in line by themselves or wait at the table. Sometimes when I’m coming in from somewhere, I’m all discombobulated and have my bag and have been walking, etc. I would love it if the person who was already settled offered to wait in line. Or, I would love the offer and then I could decide whether I wanted to take them up on it.

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      I get coffee + a table if I’m early but I try to arrive around the time we said so we walk in together. I tend not to stand around outside waiting because I’m usually cold, so I just grab the table and text saying, “Hey! Found us a table near the back, let me know when you get here!”

      • momentsofabsurdity :

        PS I feel like this is isn’t as awkward with friends as it is if I meet someone where I will pay for their coffee (like interviewing a high school student for admission to my undergraduate school) or they will pay for mine (like a date). Then you really need to wait in line together, or you have to awkwardly be like do you want me to get you anything?

    • Once I’ve got my coffee-date clinched, I usually tell my pal, “whoever gets their first, snag a table if you can, OK?” And then, if I’m first, I get a drink, and try to get a table. I don’t find it rude because I’ve already let them know that this is my intention.

      Then, they know not to expect me to wait by the door, and I trust that they are grownups who will say, “actually….can we just meet at the door?” if it matters to them.

    • Another Sarah :

      Personally, I’d grab a coffee (depending on how far behind the person was, get their order too so it’s ready when they get there), get a table, and hang out. However, I’ve heard that the “proper” etiquette when going to a restaurant is that if the other person invited you out, you wait by the door for them unless instructed otherwise. They are the “host,” and it could be considered rude to pre-empt the host. For restaurants, when I get there and the other person isn’t there, I’ll usually text/call after waiting a bit to see where they are/if they want me to grab the table to keep the reservation, or whatever.

      That said, I’m not sure of anyone who would apply this to a coffee shop. :-)

    • No advice, but I also experience this awkwardness. I’ve met business colleagues for coffee, and it’s just way less awkward to go to lunch.

  10. K in... Transition :

    update on things (since a few asked me to post one here): so the job situation just had a weird turn
    I ended up being told I had 2 offers from 2 agencies; the one I mentioned here and another. I spent 4 days debating and weighing and made a decision. I let the other agency know I had accepted a position elsewhere. I spoke with the person who would be my supervisor at the one I chose who sounded super excited. I thought everything was settled and official and then the woman in HR called and said that it isn’t an official offer yet, that they still have to check references and see my licensure paperwork and then they will decide whether to make an official offer, that, until then, they are still considering other candidates. Said she can’t give me any more info than that. So, though I emailed the other job saying that the position may fall through and I was wondering whether they’ve chosen someone else. I probably look like a total jerk to them and may have shot myself in the foot big time by trying to do the polite thing, but they’ve offered me a time to come in to discuss things later this week.

    So at this point, I have no clue whether I’ll end up being “officially” offered either position or if I went from 2 offers to 0 in one day.

    • Aw that sucks. I hope it works out. In the future, I would never tell another place no until you have it in writing. The fact that the other place wants you to come in and discuss sounds very promising.

      • Seconding all of this. Extra empathy too.

      • Yes, I have learned this the hard way. Do not say a word to anyone until you signed the offer letter. Everything is still up in the air until then.

        • And you might even wait later. . . Ask-A-Manager had a horror story recently about someone with a letter signed and in hand, and the job was cut just prior to her starting. So she’d already given notice. Not only was she without a job, but it’s tougher to get interviews when you’re not already employed, and she had no unemployment claim.

          Makes me more likely to give <2 wks, knowing this might happen.

          • That happened to one of my staff last year. She had this incredible opportunity to teach and accepted the position and signed a contract, quit her job, then it was cut right before the new school year because of lower enrollment. We had already hired someone new so we couldn’t hire her back and she still doesn’t have a full-time job.

    • Ugh. Super-annoying. Sorry you have to go through this. Good luck, and I hope both offers come through.

    • S in Chicago :

      I was just wondering how things were going. Sending good thoughts your way and hoping you still hear some good news. At least neither sounds like a definite no yet, right?

      And don’t even give “looking like a jerk” a second thought. I’ve seen countless people accept positions during our interview stage (our interview stage is pretty long and involved), and no one seems to take it the least bit personally. If anything, it’s usually a sad “one that got away” feeling. So there may even be a chance that this could be a positive in that you will come across as a candidate in demand. (Trying to put positive spin!)

      Definitely keep us posted.

  11. K in... Transition :

    Sorry for 2 posts in a row but I was wondering if anyone has any stories of dating former high school flames or anyone who was a longtime friend or the sort…

    • Hey, sorry about the job thing. That kind of thing will make you crazy. At this point, all you can do is calm down, let it play out, and know that things will eventually become clear.

      Now, as for dating former flames – I dated my ex-husband in college (we were friends when I was in high school and he was in college). I made the mistake of thinking because things were wonderful back then and he was “the one that got away” that things would be great. That meant that I missed a lot of red flags that I should have paid attention to. So be careful, but don’t be scared off by my bad experience!

    • At the risk of totally outing myself to any of my colleagues who read the blog….

      I am dating someone I met (and liked) in HS and it is pretty much the best thing ever. We met via a part time job and kept in tough throughout high school and college. He was always the sweetest guy, but shy so I couldn’t quite tell if he was being nice or interest. Fast forward a few years where I was in his neighborhood with a friend and all her friends, so I invited him out. It only took a few more times before we realized hey, we’ve liked each other and still do! Now, we’re living together and I have no doubts he’s it for me.

      Boils down to the fact he was a good guy then, great guy now. Had we dated in HS I’m not sure we’d be where we are today, but I am a lucky girl.

    • Re. old flames – IME a bad idea to try to enter the same river twice.

      • But…if the rivers are separated by the decade of growth and change — I’m not sure the rule entirely applies. (Man, I stretched that metaphor a bit there.)

        If watching Say yes to the dress has taught me anything, its that apparently being fixed up with or reconnecting with someone from your high school years later is a good way to get married. :-)

        • SF Bay Associate :

          True facts. My friend reconnected with her ex from high school, after 10+ years. They got married within a year.

          • I am hoping that’s gonna be the case with me too! At the risk of outing myself…

            I reunited with a hs crush/friend after 10 yrs post-graduation via FB. We became friends, which lasted for a year as we were in other relationships. But once we both ended up single and were decidedly over our respective baggage, we realized we are totally into each other. We have been dating for a year, are looking for a place to move in and I think this is The One! It works so well because we have none of the hs teenage insecurities that hindered us back then.

      • I am not trying to make a rule, just speaking from my own experience, and specifically with “flames”… see the italicized stories below :)
        I can see how reconnecting with an old friend or acquaintance, with no negative emotional baggage involved, could lead to a wonderful relationship.

    • I am married to an old high school flame! Although, we were never serious in high school, so it wasn’t like there was a horrible break-up or anything. In high school, we had all the same friends and were involved in the same activities and so we hung out a lot. This led to a few dates, but for whatever reason things did not really progress (looking back I am glad, because I feel like we were “meant” to be together, but in high school we were just too immature.) Anyways, around graduation we really started to be more open with how we felt, etc. but he was moving away for college so things sort of stopped there. We saw each other a few times during the first two years of college and then for reasons that had nothing to do with me, he transferred to the university I was attending. We ran into each other at a sporting event, and have been inseparable ever since. That was 9 years ago. We have been married for 6 years and have 2 kids together.

    • Oh I have stories.

      But they’re not good stories.

    • There is a big difference between an old flame and a person you knew in high school. No experience with the former, but I am married to the latter. DH and I went to school together from 6th grade on. We were friends in middle school, drifted apart in high school (totally different social circles), went to different colleges. In middle school, we were definitely in the “friend zone” and I don’t think I was ready for any romantic attachments, but I always thought he was cute in a little kid kind of way (he hit puberty late lol) and I felt very fond/affectionate towards him. Anyway, back to college- I transferred from my out of state school to the same university as DH for our junior year. We had a class together, recognized each other, started dating, got married last year.

      It’s great because we both came from the same town and had a lot of shared experiences. I mean, I’ve known him since I was 11, with some years off in between, which is crazy and awesome. Downside: it is a pain to answer the “How did you meet” question. It requires a longish explanation. If you had told me when I was 12 that I would one day marry DH, it would have blown my mind. I don’t think I would have believed it (I’m sure some of our mutual middle school friends still don’t!). But it has worked out wonderfully and I couldn’t be happier.

      • Just wanted to add: there was some weirdness when we first started dating, because you are getting to know this new (in a way) person, but you are also reconciling it with the younger version of them you knew years back. So you know them and you don’t at the same time. But that’s kind of a nice place to be.

    • Anne Shirley :

      Is this the guy with the kid? I’m still voting that you have way too much going on in your life to get involved with man with kid.

    • I reconnected with a guy I was friends with in high school when I moved back to the area to go to law school. We have been together for 5 years and married for over a year. We never dated in high school, and I probably wouldn’t have dated him back then or at all during either of our college years, but now, we are all grown up and things are really great between us. I love that we have our childhoods in common, our hometown and high school alma mater in common. It’s just kinda… cute. We are both so different than we were in high school, so I find myself referring to when we reconnected as “when we met”, and he always reminds me that we met when we were three years old at Mother’s Day Out.
      Ultimately, I think it’s worth a shot. If you actually did date before, pay close attention to anything about him that was a problem the first time you dated and see if that has changed. If it hasn’t by now, it isn’t going to. Seems like you could test the waters out and determine if it’s worth re-visiting without too much of a commitment.

    • I personally don’t. But my brother married one of his closest friends from high school. They never dated until he was finished with grad school. They have a great marriage – I think actually being friends really helps having a succcesful relationship.

    • Go for it…unless he is dating someone else. Says the person who just got dumped by someone whose first love (who lives 1000 miles away) contacted him after ELEVEN years of not speakin to try again. No I’m not upset or anything…

    • Solo Practitioner :

      I hooked up with several guys from high school. None of them turned into much. I grew up in a college town. I left town for school somewhere far away, but a bunch of people stayed and went to college where we grew up. They were always there when I came home from vacations.

      After we hooked up in college, I found out that one of the guys had a huge crush on me all through high school. I wasn’t looking for a real relationship, so I think I may have caused some heartbreak there. Be wary of that if you’re on the other end.

  12. Marital issue (so skip if you’d like):

    Just over a week ago husband made a mistake, that was 100% his fault and was basically due to him goofing around and not checking a deadline until it was too late on one of his work projects, that cost us about a thousand dollars. Combined, we make about $75K/year. It’s not the end of the world – but it meant I have had to cancel our first vacation in over a year to come up with the money to pay for it, a vacation I have been looking forward to for months. So, it is a hardship, especially to me.

    What is the end of the world is that he refuses to apologize for it. Refuses. Says this is all just because the institution whose deadline he missed “creates artificial rules to make money” and it is their fault for not letting it slide once he told them it was a mistake he’d missed the deadline that had been in place for months. Every time I say something, he becomes incredibly angry and lashes out at me (verbally, I mean).

    Before you think I’m married to a jerk, let me just say, this attitude is way out of character. Missing deadlines, not having his act together? Very in-character. But he’s always apologetic, figures it out, fixes it. And he has positive traits that outshine his disorganization. Or did.

    Now I’m at a loss. It has blown up into a major issue. We basically aren’t talking to each other now. Maybe he’s ashamed, maybe he is angry at himself, maybe he has a brain tumor causing this, maybe this is a cover-up for how he’s about to divorce me. And I can’t seem to let it go when he refuses to take responsibility for it – I mean, what’s next? I feel like I can’t trust him to be responsible anymore. Last night I suggested we try a one-time counseling session to try and work past this and he (very angrily) said he doesn’t see what the problem is except people are doing him wrong, and doesn’t need to pay someone else to be told what he knows.

    Suggestions? I look forward to being at work because it’s the only time I feel like a competent human being these days.

    • Ugh, sorry you’re going through this and don’t get your vacation. If he’s stubborn he may just be digging in his heels, although I bet the anger is rooted in embarrassment that he made what seems to be a totally avoidable mistake. No real advice, I probably would just ignore it for a while and see if he comes around and apologizes.

    • One mistake from an ordinarily competent person, and now you’re not sure you can trust him and want to go to counseling? Kindly back off your DH. Yes, it sucks that it was an expensive mistake and that you’ll miss your vacation. Your DH is only human and he probably feels terrible, hence the lashing out.

      • to be fair, she said, “Missing deadlines, not having his act together? Very in-character.” So it sounds like she’s been dealing with this roller-coaster act (see “He always figures it out, fixes it” — even if things get fixed, the fixing would be stressful for me) for awhile, and now it’s had significant consequences that DH refuses to acknowledge.

    • This sounds like a frustrating situation. :(

      Are you suggesting counseling b/c you are worried about the future effects of his disorganization? Or are you suggesting counseling b/c you feel unable to have a conversation about a one-off event? Or is it because of the lashing out? Counseling over a solitary event seems unusual to me.. but if it’s indicative of other things, then maybe it makes more sense.. did you mean a financial counselor or a relationship counselor?

      Again.. without knowing more and not trying to be judgy.. it sounds like he might have too much pride to accept that it was truly his mistake esp since this affects your big vacay plans. Some cooling off period before further discussions may be in order and maybe an indirect way to address the mistake is to talk about other ways to save the vacation plans? That might turn into a broader discussion on organization?

      • I guess I wish there was a neutral party where we could talk to each other. And I guess my frustration is that he is always, always disorganized and forgetting things and causing us a little extra expense and inconvenience here and there, but it hasn’t bothered me in the past because he’s always tried his best to make it right, and because he’s got some other great qualities where I felt like I could be the organized one.

        But I’ve realized over the past week how much added stress there is in my life from always having to check behind him to make sure things have been done and remind him or bring him what he’s forgotten. And how much I’m involved with the nuances of his life in a way that he really doesn’t have to be with mine, because I take care of issues when they come up. And so I guess this action + losing my vacation is really just the straw that has broken my camel’s back.

        So maybe I’m realizing there’s a bigger problem than just one fluke mistake, and that, combined with his new negative attitude, has made what could have been a minor issue into a major issue.

        • I may be a little sensitive to this issue because my husband started lashing out at me out of the blue last year. His behavior was precipitated by an event, but his response was out of proportion.

          Given your description of feeling like he imposes added stress on you and your need to check up on him to make sure he’s doing what he needs to do, I’d say that there are probably some underlying issues. You can’t “make” him go to counseling with you, but you could go on your own. In my situation, we’ve gone to marital counseling, but my individual counseling has been even more helpful to me. Maybe talking all this through with a “neutral” would be good for you, too.

          • Yeah it sounds like even if you speak with someone, it could be helpful.

            It’s tricky to “teach” someone to be organized because everyone values the effects of disorganization differently–ie it bugs you that you lost a vacation but it might be an “acceptable” cost to him. It can also take a long time.. then again growing resentment is also problematic. As others have said, it might be sound to let this go for the moment, cool off and then come back to the general disorganization problem by implementing small changes? Right now, suggesting a counselor may seem like a wholesale indictment of his abilities esp considering his explanation of the mistake.

        • Could Mr. Lost be ADD or ADHD?

          Mr. Ex-Herbie was, and this disorganization is one of the way it manifests itself. Until I recognized it for what it was and Mr. Ex-Herbie and I had some discussions about it, it was maddening because I ascribed intent to it reflecting on his valuation of our relationship (although that’s not phrasing it quite right– like, he doesn’t care enough about this relationship to do X or plan Y). When in fact he did care quite a bit, but the ADD made him too scattered to execute.

          • I don’t know a lot about ADD/ADHD, actually, especially in adults. Mr. Lost can do a single activity and focus very intensely on it for hours at a time – for example, if he were to begin painting the house, he would continue painting the house for 8 hours until he was done for the day.

            But he cannot juggle even two balls in the air – without a list and potentially a reminder call, if he goes to get eggs, milk, and a haircut, I can guarantee he will return missing at least one of those.

            Also he’s very good at daily schedules – walks the dogs, starts the coffee, does things that need doing identically at the same time every day very well. But things like answering mail or paying bills, house maintenance, things that occur on a weekly, monthly, or irregular schedule to any degree, more than 70% of those activities/deadlines he’ll miss.

          • It might be worth getting him evaluated.

            *shrug* Just something to think about.

          • Actually, intensive focus on certain things is a sign of ADD.

        • The part of your post that concerns me is the part where he thinks everyone is doing him wrong. This sounds over the top paranoid in response to a situation where he knew the deadline and just flat missed it. Perhaps the added stress comes from the fact that he has always been able to “fix” it in the past, and not getting away scot-free is a new and unpleasant experience for him.

          Not sure of the answer, but I would lay off him for awhile and possibly get some individual counseling for yourself to help deal with this and to help you recognize if he is sliding towards needing real counseling.

    • Since he is routinely disorganized, you’re unlikely to win any points with him by trying to fix it. Instead, maybe you can talk about beefing up the emergency fund so you won’t be as affected by this type of error in the future? Take the angle that you’re really disappointed to be missing the vacation due to money issues. Rather than focusing on the cause of the money issue and accusing him, focus on coming together as a team to save up some cash. He’s more likely to react positively to this angle.

    • I suggest you just let it go (unless it happens again). He is probably really upset at himself and feels very badly/ashamed that his mistake adversly affected you. I feel like I am being a total hypocrite (because I have a really hard time letting stuff like this go), but if I could rationally give myself advice if I was in your situation, I would urge myself to let it go. In the grand scheme of your marriage, $1000 is inconsequential.

    • It sounds like this has really turned into a “thing” between you, and that the issue has morphed from the actual money issue to his inability to apologize, your frustration with what this means “on a larger scale” and your general relationship.

      I would drop it. For at least a month. It sounds like its become such an issue that it’s threatening your relationship, and I’m not sure that it’s worth it.

      I say this as someone who has a husband who has many (MANY) positive attributes. What is not among them is his willingness to offer up unpestered apologies. It makes me crazy, but I’m finally accepting that that is who he is and it doesn’t actually mean as much as I can make it mean in my own head.

      So drop it. Really drop it, for a month. Let things settle. Journal, or whatever, if you’re dwelling on it. At the end of the month, assess what’s really important to you, and if you need to circle back and have a conversation about it, hopefully tempers will have cooled enough that it can be productive.

      • Re: his unwillingness to offer up unpestered apologies

        OMG I think when my husband is pretending to be at work, he’s secretly off being EC MD’s husband.

        • Maybe I am somehow EC MD and mamabear’s husbands? I stink at apologizing for misunderstandings, and being pestered for one makes me feel like a child. I’m great when it comes to things I’ve done that require apologies, but spoken stuff? Giant mental block.

        • SpaceMountain :

          I bought my husband the Knock Knock Apology Notepad from Amazon so he could just check a box, as he is apparently incapable of apologizing, even after 15 years of marriage. The notepad remains unused. I heard a podcast recently about a company you can hire to apologize for you, and was thinking it would be a great service for my husband, but, alas, the company is in China.

        • The other thing that makes me crazy? When I apologize, he doesn’t say “I forgive you” or I accept your apology.

          I’ve come to realize that the words aren’t that important to him — he thinks “of course I accept your apology. I adore you and am married to you and you are imperfect but wonderful.” And he doesn’t say “I’m sorry” because he is sure that I know, and that we’ll get past this issue, and unite as parents as our three year old dumps out his entire cereal bowl because I had the audacity to put the dried cherries in without waiting for him. Not that this happened this morning.

      • Agree with EC MD. And my husband is just the same. You know how they often say about marriage that you can be right or you can be happy? This is the sort of situation where that applies. You are right, he should apologize, but your reaction is now out of proportion. I suspect that he senses that your anger at this is part of a larger frustration with his personality, so he is responding to that larger, implied accusation not the immediate situation. Let it go. If you can’t let it go, therapy is probably the best idea- because then you need to accept that this is about a lot more than just this mistake. For bonus wife points: tell him you love him, schedule a cheaper vacation, and be excited about it. Then he will probably apologize.

        • I so feel your pain. And that being right versus being happy thing? SO hard. It does make me happy to be right. At least a little.

          I think you’ve gotten good advice here. What it seems to me is that you are wanting something from him that he can’t give — an apology. So you can keep being upset and annoyed about it, but you still won’t get the apology, because he doesn’t have it to give to you.

          Or you could decide to forgive him, even without the apology. Really forgive him, in your heart, for the money and the missed vacations and the other stuff.

          I suspect your highly organized nature and covering for him is also enabling him to avoid the natural consequences of his actions. It would be consistent with forgving him to change your behavior in the future — and not check behind him, not bail him out. You do your stuff (or family joint suff, so the power doesn’t get cut off,etc.) but let him do his stuff. And don’t get involved, but don’t bail him out. The hard part about this is you have to be not mean about it.

          I have a similar husband. I do all our joint finances and everything. Sometimes he runs out of money and can’t do something he wants to do because he planned poorly. I used to (resentfully) give him money. Now I don’t. Its better now, for both of us. I am less angry and he gets to live his own life.

      • Sounds like I could be wife #3 of this guy.

        If in the wrong, he WILL change behaviour – permanently ! on big issues ! But just darned if he’s going to acknowledge it with an apology.

    • K in... Transition :

      he may well feel so embarrassed by the mistake that any reminder of it makes him defensive and he lashes out. you’re bringing it up because you’re not over it because he hasn’t apologized (valid) but it feels to him like you’re bringing it up knowing it’s upsetting to him, so he lashes out because he can’t see why you’re bringing up something you know upsets him except to try to upset him (which validates his lashing out).

      An idea? Write him a very short note and leave it for him to find in a place where he’s relaxed (aka not in his briefcase while stressed at work or something). “I wanted you to know that I love you and I’m sorry we’re not getting to go on our vacation. I really want to put ___ behind us but it’s tough for me because you haven’t apologized, so I am not sure whether you feel as badly about this as I do. Let’s have one more talk about this and then move on?”

      I’m with you in the frustration validation, but don’t let this become a huge marital issue if this is something really out of character for him!

      • THIS. My husband does what you describe in the first paragraph… I get upset about something, he doesn’t apologize, I get upset he didn’t apologize and bring it up, he gets upset that I brought it up because it reminds him that he upset me…..

        This is totally a mars/venus thing I think!

    • No great advice on interpersonal issues, but :

      Is he self-employed? Or did his employer make him pay the fee out of his personal paycheck? Depending on the state’s employment laws, I’m not sure that’s legal if he’s an employee of the company (and not a independent contractor) — though I’m not familiar with the details of every state law.

      • Mr. Lost is self-employed. He signed up for the wrong continuing education class that does not count towards his credits, then signed up for the right one a few days later, and forgot to drop the wrong one and now it’s too late to get the money back.

        • Is Mr. Lost also my SO? Because I am beyond done dealing with lost money due to classes, late fees, withdrawals, etc. And don’t even get me started on the, “that deadline is so arbitrary” comment. Clearly, thousands of other people can work within this framework. My solution was the extra emergency fund as I indicated above. This has happened so many times that I declare it a function of his personality. Also, adult ADD is a factor.

        • Is it REALLY too late? I’d fight that rather than just roll over and say, “Oh well, money’s gone.” Maybe someone at the school will work with you on it even though you’re technically past the deadline.

      • Wait, is this true? Because that is the policy at my firm (as in, if something happens and the firm pays a late fee, regardless of fault, that fee comes directly out of my paycheck). I’m in TX, FWIW.

    • I don’t agree with the drop it comments. If this were a one-off thing and totally out of character, yeah, let it go. But it’s not. It sounds like this really opened your eyes to the negative impact his disorganization has on you emotionally and on your relationship. You may need to let this particular incident cool off a little (surely he is really embarrassed even if he refuses to admit it), but it’s worth thinking about how you two can address this issue going forward.

      • ITA with Herbie. It’s something to explore more– not to pester him, but to think about once the initial….heat of resentment/anger has died down.

        There may be some way to handle these types of situations better, and I do think that the refusal to take responsibility can make living with someone maddening. Life is full of little (and sometimes big) bumps in the road, and mistakes happen, refusing to acknowledge responsibility when you know very well the other person wants that seems petty and ungenerous to me. It also contribute to resentments, which can be lethal to a long-term relationship when people have invested so much.

      • Everyone has had great comments. Herbie, your comments have particularly resounded with me.
        Mr. Lost met every qualification on the adult ADHD scale. But also, every member in his immediate biological family meets it as well – and so now I’m wondering how much of it is him vs. how much is it that he went through the first two decades of his life without any organization whatsoever, and how much the two issues are related. You’ve given me a lot to think about.

        • ADHD runs in families. So, it’s possible that not only does Mr. Lost have it, but so do other members of his family.

        • Seattleite :

          The two issues are absolutely related. ADD is genetic. And ADD parents are the least-prepared to structure their households for ADD children, who need that structure the most. It’s a heartbreaking vicious circle.

          Please see a counselor who specializes in ADD issues. She will help you come up with coping techniques. Also, read “Driven to Distraction” and “You Mean I’m Not Lazy, Stupid, or Crazy?!”

      • So sorry you’ve missed the vacation — especially your first in a long while. How very frustrating!

        I agree that cooling off is a good idea, and then suggest you seek counseling either alone or together. It sounds as if you two have very different styles for handling the demands of daily life and you have been doing a lot of work to “make up for” how he functions. It sounds exhausting and I bet it doesn’t feel great for him, either. (I hope this doesn’t sound harsh — I’m definitely on your side with respect to the need for organization! But you two chose each other and need to find a way to function as a team that serves both of you.) You now have a chance to be intentional about deciding to continue functioning this way together. Counseling can help you understand how each of you contributes to the dynamic. Even if you go alone, you can get some advice on how to raise the topic in the most effective way. Good luck!!!

    • I suppose all the cooler heads in this thread are right; I suppose you should try to let it go. But I would not be able to. Maybe the vacation carries extra weight — I look forward to that all year, and it would be hard for me to have that snatched away. But maybe this resonates for me because I broke up with a guy I had been dating for three years when he refused to apologize for doing something that put me in a terrible spot. So I have my own baggage here.

    • Anne Shirley :

      Have you though about what would have happened if you hadn’t cancelled the vacation? What if it had been paid in full and non-refundable? Credit card debt, he doesn’t take the class, he sells his prized whatever, you guys cut back in some other way?

      I agree with the others that what’s dOne is done, but if my father had caused my mother to miss her vacation, I know he’d have spent months trying to make it right for her. They’ve had 31 happy years, and frankly I think I, and all the rest of you, deserve better than a man who is never wrong and uses your marriage to bail himself out.

    • I’m afraid I sound kind of like your husband…I forget stuff all the time, and am not a big planner. I also realized years ago that I find it difficult to apologize; since I realized this I have really been working on it, but I’ve also noticed that the other person’s reaction makes a big difference in how easy it is for me to apologize. If they “pester” me, it becomes incredibly, incredibly, more difficult.

      I’ve tried to address this by forcing myself to apologize quickly when I do something wrong, so that the apology comes from me rather than from the pestering. This makes it easier. If the pestering starts, though, I really struggle. I actually owe an apology to a friend, who hasn’t said anything about it, and I am eternally grateful to her for her patience with me.

      Of course I’m not your husband, but if it were me in his shoes, I think the best thing for you to do would be to drop it, as much as you can, for a few weeks and let things cool off. Once you’ve both had time to simmer down, sit down with your husband and explain, calmly and kindly, how you felt about the vacation and the lack of an apology, using all the tactics you hear about (“When you aren’t organized, I feel like you don’t care about the effect your actions have on me”…”It really helps me in these situations if you just apologize, so we can move on” or whatever works for you).

      In any case, I know people like me can be difficult to deal with in this way. For what it’s worth, I really am sorry on behalf of us all. We do have other good qualities, though, as I’m sure your husband does, too.

    • It sounds like you’ve been nagging him about it. Why do you need to keep brining it up? The milk is spilled. Fortunately, the damage has been been paid for. The solution is to say to him when you get home tonight, “I’m sorry I’ve been nagging you about this. I’ll stop. I love you.” Then give him a kiss and move on with life.

      If you made a big mistake, you’d want him to do the same.

      Marriage is not that complicated. Our pride often gets in our own way.

      • One could easily turn it back at the husband, though. Because it’s his pride that’s getting in the way of his apologizing. They’re both making it complicated– it’s the human condition, alas. Her by bringing it up, and him by digging his heels in.

        If it’s a one-time thing (refusal to acknowledge mistake that affected both him and OP), then I’d drop it.

        If this is part of a consistent pattern of refusing to acknowledge a mistake, then I think it might be helpful for OP to see a therapist, as others have recommended, to get a clear, third-party view of whether her reaction to DH’s mistakes is overblown.

        If she’s just being normal and not accusatory or snarky about it and he STILL won’t ever acknowledge and apologize, then he’s behaving in a way that’s corrosive to the marriage. It’s bad enough that he’s screwing things up like this, worse when OP has to tiptoe around him.

        Is this really how the OP wants to live the rest of her life with him? Or is there a better way for both to handle these dynamics?

        • I agree. The problem with the situation is pride. His and hers. They can both continue to be proud which will get no one anywhere.

          At this point, the OP needs a solution. She suggeted they attend a one-time therapy session. He has declined. What’s the next possible solution? Maybe my suggested solution will work. Maybe it won’t. If it doesn’t, she needs to come up with another solution. Marriage only works if both sides keep trying. If he refuses to try and and rebuffs any efforts to come up with a solution, there’s only one ending to this story.

          But she’s in control of what she does. She has control over whether to apologize for nagging him about it.

          • I think it’s ridiculous for the OP to apologize in this situation.

          • This reply is for anonz, below.

            I agree it’s ridiculous for the OP to apologize. The husband sounds like an idiot.

            But making a marriage work is not about who’s right, who’s wrong, or who’s being ridiculous. It’s about making it through the rough times. The OP and her husband are going through a rough time. It did not start because of the OP, but so what? Rough times aren’t the time to be stubborn. Rough times are when married couples need to come up with a solutions. She admits she continues to bring up the situation. She needs to stop. Maybe, when enough time has passed, they can discuss it calmly and come up with better ways for the husband to meet deadlines. Maybe, when she makes a mistake just as big, she can remind him how forgiving she was of him. The alternative is to let this corrode away at the marriage and then the OP is just another divorce statistic.

          • AG – I agree. We only have control over ourselves. OP isn’t going to make the husband be a more organized person. He either will be or won’t.

            Individual counseling is a good idea if she’s finding she resents him all the time for things he can’t change about himself.

    • My stepson (now 21) is a lot like this. His father and I started reading a lot about ADD/ADHD, including some introductory books about how to deal with it in college, in a job, in a marriage. It sounds exactly like what you are talking about.

  13. Fellow “Glee” fans – is anyone else totally disappointed in the dearth of Darren Criss numbers the past few weeks? Really, he’s about the only reason I am still watching. :(

    • Um…always. :-) Though ever since I saw him next to Matthew Bomer some of the luster is off the apple.

      If I had to guess, the reasoning may be (a) that he was gone for several weeks earlier in the season to do the musical in NYC so may not have had time to prepare later season numbers and/or (b) he’s going to be one of the only male lead seniors next year…so he’ll practically be singing alone. :-P

    • I’m a few weeks behind in Glee and totally misread your comment to say the “death of Darren Criss” and nearly had a coronary.

    • Yeah, I’m done with glee after yesterday’s finale. This season has just sucked, and everytime I watch, I fast-forward through pretty much half the show and still wonder why I just wasted 30 min of my life that I can’t get back on such schlock. I’m loving Smash though, it has become my glee-stitute.

      • This is me, totally! I’m tired of feeling like Glee is preaching at me, and trying to hit all these serious issues. To me it just doesn’t work. I usually just watch these days to see what everyone’s wearing, because I love Emma’s wardrobe.

        Smash, on the other hand, is AWESOME! And I loved that they showed the whole season straight through with no reruns!!

    • Anon. for this one :

      The beginning with Burt Hummel, the moment with Quinn and Sue, and the car scene with Finn and Rachel were the only pieces in the whole thing that were worth watching. Sad. As for Darren, he’ll be on next season, these episodes were meant to spotlight the cast who are leaving.

    • My number 1 rule of Glee is that there can never be too much Darren Criss. That said, Glee has been so bad this season. The complete lack of any character continuity or well-developed story lines has gotten really annoying. I stopped watching for a while, but got sucked back in after a few weeks. Mostly because of Darren Criss and Kurt and Blaine.

      I also wish they’d go back to doing Blaine’s hair in the season 2 style. It was slicked back, but not so shellacked. Petty? Yes, but we’re talking about guilty pleasure entertainment here – give me better hair! Also, more Emma. I love Emma! I can’t stand Mr. Schue unless he’s in a scene with Emma. I should probably stop making a list of Glee grievances now, because it is a very long list.

  14. Random: I don’t get a chance to read Corporette as much as I used to because of (gasp!) work… But I did want to vouch for Lirola’s dress shop on Etsy. I think @divaliciousness and others were trying to recall the infamous Corporette who LOVES Lirola. Well, that’s me! I bought this dress from her and love love love it! Also, Lirola’s such a joy to work with. Besides being drop-dead gorgeous, she’s prompt, friendly, and responsive. Also, she constructs dresses from woven materials that ‘give’ — so she doesn’t have to tailor within 1 inch of your life to make it look molded to you. Even though it’s cotton-y, sometimes even sweat-shirt material, it’s high quality. That said, I only dry clean my stuff, because I don’t want it to stretch out or fade.

    Go girls, get a dress from Lirola! And no, I don’t get a commission or anything ;-)

    Read more:

    • Divaliscious11 :

      YES! Thank you…now if I can get everyone and their mother, father and cousin to stop wanting money from me so I can order…..


  15. Hair accessory question – is the consensus that skinny headbands are too twee, even for a business casual office? When I pull my hair up in a mid-height ponytail, I really like the addition of the skinny headband (in neutral colors – black, white, brown) to soften an otherwise stringent look.

    Same goes for snap clips pulling a section of your hair inf ront up and to one side – also too twee? Office goes VERY casual on Fridays, but otherwise business casual.

    • Former MidLevel :

      I have no problem with either of these looks in the abstract, especially in a business casual environment. At long as the rest of your outfit is not too girly-girly, I think you’re fine.

    • I sometimes bobby pin a section a front section of my hair to the side and don’t think it looks too bad. It is a better look than my giant cowlick enjoying free roam.

    • I’d say yes to the headband, but probably no to the barrettes.

    • I think skinny neutral headbands are entirely appropriate, it’s when you get into the ones with a lot of embellishments that it starts to look a little too childish. I have long hair and I can’t wear it down without it falling in my face, so I use snap clips fairly regularly (currently rocking one). As long as they are dark enough to blend in more with my dark hair, I think they are fine.

      • Phew – feeling better, less twee, more safe.

        • I think they’re fine, and I agree with you that they can soften a look.

        • I work in a biz casual office in the same region and regularly wear skinny headbands when I wear my hair down in order to keep it from falling in my face while I review documents/go about the business of lawyering.

          I don’t wear them on court or client meeting days, but otherwise, if I’m hanging out in my office getting things done, I have no qualms about them. FWIW: I wouldn’t wear them in those situations because I’m a new atty and already get told that I “have a young-looking face” so I try to err on the side of Very Conservative and Authoritative when I’m meeting with people.

    • I’m not sure I’d describe them as “twee.” More “cutesey.” I try not to be that at work.

      It can “soften a look” because it adds femininity. But sometimes you need your look to have more gravitas, not be softer.

      If you’re young, I’d avoid both of these styles.

  16. Nordstrom Vent

    Anyone else having problem with the site this morning. I put several things in my cart yesterday and added a couple more this morning. I clicked on my cart, and everything got deleted. Plus, I could not add a few of the Caslon tees I wanted. Maybe there is just a lot of traffic on the site?

    • MissJackson :

      I went back and forth this morning with a dress that would go in my cart and then be “unavailable” when I tried to check out — I’m pretty sure that it just sold out but it took awhile for the web to show it as sold out.

      The half-yearly sale is just a little crazy and the website is having a hard time keeping up :)

  17. Merriweather :

    To the hive! (to be read in the same voice as “To the Batmobile!”) I’m planning my first Nordie’s anniversary sale experience this weekend. I need revamp all my undergarments. Get measured for bras (that fit), new underwear (general update and eliminate VPL), and some sort of undergarment along the lines of Spanx so that I can wear my clingly dresses with confidence. My plan is to get there early (near opening) and snag a salesperson and have her help me and tell her to only bring me things on sale. Other ideas on where to start? FWIW, I have only been measured at VS, most of my bras and underwear are from VS or Target, and I have a couple of shaping underthings that are also from Target. I want to take the next step into things that fit me well and are of high (or at least better) quality.

  18. momentsofabsurdity :

    I just bought bright blue jeans (this color, but not this style)

    I have no idea what color to wear them with, though! Black seems very eighties-colorblock and a little overly harsh compared to the brightness of the blue.

  19. Major TJ: This is, possibly, the most off-topic threadjack ever, but can you all send some love to my friend Nicole? In addition to the ‘r e t t e s who comment frequently, I know this blog has many readers, and she needs all of the kind thoughts/prayers/notes of encouragement she can get. She has breast cancer and is pregnant. There’s basically nothing I can do for her, but I thought it would be nice if hundreds of strangers wished her well. This is her blog:

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      Will do.

    • I just left her a comment. What a touching blog. I am sending lots of positive thoughts her way

    • I can’t find a way to comment anonymously. Will you please pass on my/our hugs and best wishes? My heart really goes out to her.

    • That’s sweet of you – I just left her a note. What a heartwrenching story. I hope she has a successful surgery, and that the baby gets to develop as long as possible.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      Also, I know you can’t predict outcomes based on personal anecdotes but it is always nice to hear success stories. An acquaintance had to have her appendix removed via emergency surgery, under general anesthesia while pregnant. I think she was early in her second trimester, not sure. Baby did fine and kept on cooking full term. Both she and another friend required brief strong painkillers while pregnant. The first for the surgery obviously, the second for severe kidney stones. Both were assured that it was safer for baby to mom to manage her pain than for baby to deal with the stress of a mom in severe pain. Both babies are totally normal and healthy. While those mom’s weren’t dealing with cancer, they did have major medical issues during pregnancy. I hope your friend has the same great outcome!

      • Along these lines, I was hospitalized for asthma 3 times with one if my pregnancies and spent a week in ICU one of those times and came close to not surviving. I was 18 weeks pregnant and my baby got all kinds of not-safe-for-pregnancy drugs. He’s now 6 and perfect. They are very resilient!

        Sending best wishes and prayers for a similarly successful outcome.

    • soulfusion :

      I can’t get the website to pull up – maybe she has been overloaded with comments :)
      I will try again later but as someone who has lived through the scare of breast cancer I want to tell you what a great friend you are to solicit encouragement for her. That moment of diagnosis is beyond overwhelming and I felt I was constantly bolstered by seemingly small and simple things – a card, an email, a text, a YouTube link that made me laugh, blog comments and even FB likes. The absolute best thing you can do for your friend is to be there for her. I had one friend who lives far away who mailed me a card once a week. Another long-distance friend sent me texts with random questions like “what music are you listening to this week”. The only time I was disappointed was when friends disappeared. I was warned it would happen but was shocked when it did. And I don’t mean the usual weeks and sometimes months that can crop in between contact, I mean long-term friends who vanished. For me, having people step up with specific offers of help and support got me through the worst year of my life and ultimately made the year pretty incredible because I got to see how people feel about me. My thoughts are with you and your friend.

  20. WSJ article :

    Anyone else see the WSJ article about how work-life balance isn’t just for the married-with-children folk?

    I know it’s not really news to the c-rettes here, but I wish a copy could magically land on the desk of one partner in my office, so he’ll stop making comments like “of course you can take on this umpteeth must-be-done-now assignment, it’s not like you have anything better to do! you’re young and single!” while he then goes next door to discuss preschools with the married-with-kids associate.

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