Coffee Break: Market Pebbled Leather Tote Bag

This gawgeous blue-and-blue tote from Coach is different from what I’ve seen before — it actually looks to me like a much pricier bag than $295. I like the details: the voluminous bag opening, the bandana rivets, the way that it stays open, the wide flat bottom, and, while it’s not as good as a zipper on top, I do like that it has something to secure the contents. It’s at Neiman Marcus for $295 and at Coach for $350 in teal and deep coral, both with a floral lining. Coach Market Pebbled Leather Tote Bag

Here’s a more affordable (only because it’s on sale) pebbled leather tote.

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Comments

  1. Not the biggest fan of this bag. It’s inoffensive enough but nothing about it calls to me. But I have liked a lot of the new stuff from Coach lately except that — and this is so completely shallow and dumb — but I can’t seem to get past my distaste for the brand from a few years ago when they plastered their logo onto everything. Have the same problem with D&B: used to like them ages ago when they were a solid, well made brand with classic designs, hated them when they went through their super mass market period and now some stuff is actually quite nice but I just can’t get on board somehow. This is not very logical. Anyone else have this issue?

    FWIW, although some of this is probably unfairly based on brand dilution I feel the same way about more expensive brands like LV that are just as omnipresent. I generally just prefer things that are lower key, if that makes sense.

    • Anonymous :

      Same. Zero interest in Coach/LV/DB. Have loved Kate Spade for ages but it’s basically the new Coach in my area. Sigh.

      • Pretty Primadonna :

        Ditto. I had Coach bags in college, so adult me associates those bags with young women. DB bags were cool in high school. I’ve carried Kate Spade bags for the last several years, but how that they’re becoming a Michael Michael Kors in terms of overexposure, I have to find a new brand.

    • I really like vintage Coach bags. The leather seems so much more luxurious.

  2. Columbia v Harvard Law :

    A younger colleague of mine is interested in pursuing a career in public interest law and/or academia. She has been accepted to Harvard and Columbia and is trying to decide where to go — Columbia has offered her a full ride but Harvard hasn’t given her any info yet on the financial side of things. She has a call out to Harvard but may not know before the Columbia deadline. I thought this group might have good advice for her. No family money, no intentions of going to Big Law (or a firm at all). Thanks!

    • So everyone is going to say I’m an idiot but I was given this choice and went Harvard. Reason being I was planning to practice in a flyover state and I thought the brand would help vs Columbia and because I’d been living in New York and wanted to do something else. The $160,000 or whatever the value of the scholarship was at the time seemed like a lot, but I think I’d make the same choice again because I had a great experience at Harvard. There are also a lot of loan forgiveness options for someone going public interest.

      I ended up in big law – still trying to find my way to public interest! My only other suggestion would be to consider a local school (where presumably she has a full ride) if there is a good one. That’s really the choice I should have made for public interest in my city. Local law school > Harvard > Columbia

      • Also I did loooove Harvard. And I think there are more public interest people/convos happening there than Columbia, which is placed right in NYC and right in the middle of finance/big law etc. for that reason.

      • Anonymous :

        Made the same choice under the same circumstances, and would make it all over again in a heartbeat.

    • I have no advice on whether or how she could get a comparable money from Harvard, but IF she is going to law school without the intent of going into private practice, AND Columbia has offered her a full ride, then she should take it. She’ll make many good connections in New York, the option to go into private practice will be there should she want it, and she’ll appreciate the ability to graduate without debt someday.

      • (I feel like my comment and the one immediately above mine just goes to show that there is no right answer to this question. And I won’t be surprised if your colleague ends up in private practice right out of law school – it’s truly the path of least resistance from those institutions).

      • HLS does not give out scholarships–they only do financial aid. However, like the other poster above, I went to HLS regardless of this issue (and regardless of the fact that I would be footing the bill because there is no money in my family to help) because it had the right combination of culture, reputation, and other opportunities for me. And FWIW, I also LOVED it. It was worth it for me, but it may not be for others–it just depends on factors unique to the individual.

        HLS does have great loan forgiveness programs for public interest lawyers, FYI.

      • Anonymous :

        I did not go to HYS for law school. I went somewhere where I graduated with only 50K in loans. That has given me luxuries I could never imagine as a kid in my 20s at the time I was deciding. The main luxury is time and flexibility. I didn’t have to take a job in NYC to pay off loans. I could afford to use my job $ to buy a house b/c I didn’t have a devastating loan payment. I could also step back from a total BigLaw sweatshop when I had kids b/c, again, I wasn’t in debt up to my eyeballs. I didn’t want public interest, but I did want to clerk (and did) after law school and thought I wanted to teach (turns out I enjoy practicing, but not for 80 hours/week).

        • This is how I see it. Not having substantial debt buys you a lot more than a law degree from Harvard, in my opinion.

    • If she’s going into public interest law, she should go wherever she will graduate with the least debt.

    • I went to Columbia Law. I’m in Big Law, but there was definitely a public interest crowd at Columbia. There were also a good number of students who have gone into academia. If she gets money from Harvard, go ahead, but I’ve found that the Columbia brand opens a lot of doors, too.

    • I graduated from law school 12 years ago. I have known a lot of people who went to lesser ranked schools who accepted them and offered them full rides or healthy scholarships. They are all VERY HAPPY they made the decision they made. I think your friend should contact Harvard and explain her situation and ask for a decision on financial aid packages before her deadline to notify Columbia.

      • Anonymous :

        This is me. I went to a top 20 school on a full ride. Went to Big Law (with many colleagues from Harvard) and paid off my undergrad debt, bought a house in an insane Boston market, paid off my fiance’s student loans and am funding my painfully expensive wedding in cash. I can quit BigLaw whenever I want because my financial goals are all lined up.

    • just some anecdata for your friend: more than 75% of the people I know who went to law school intending to work in public interest (myself included) ended up in private practice. So it’s important to pick a school that will set you up for either option, and in my opinion as an NYC mid-law associate, both Harvard & Columbia will do that. The big-name public interest places (the ACLU, UN, etc.) are incredibly elitist, so maybe that’s a point for Harvard.

      • Anonymous :

        Your last sentence kills me. It is so true! We are not worthy to speak truth to power, to fight the man, etc.

        Signed,
        naively thought I could get an internship at the UN; I’ve since been schooled

        • Anonymous :

          I’m not a lawyer, and I had no idea about this, and it’s crazy to me. The ACLU is snobby about their lawyers’ law-school brand names? For real?

        • Yeah, I wish I had known that before my 2L year…ugh.

    • Marshmallow :

      Columbia for free, 100000%. The ability to go straight into public interest sounds amazing.

      • Anonforthis :

        So much this; Harvard is #3 on US News and Columbia is #5. That two-spot difference is not worth 160K, IMHO. For anecdata, my spouse was admitted to Berkeley with a scholarship and Stanford without; a slightly larger ranking difference at the time (6 spots), but still both top 10. He chose Stanford, and has regretted it (and the decade plus of paying back loans, because you cannot count on public interest repayment if it means you’re staying in a toxic work environment) consistently, even though he likes being a lawyer.

        • FWIW, and as a Columbia Law grad, the reputation gap between Harvard Law and Columbia Law is greater than “2 spots” implies on its own. The perceived difference between the top 3 and #4 is huge, as is the perceived difference between the bottom of the T-14 and #15.

          But, as I said below, I’d still choose the full ride at Columbia, so I agree with you.

          • Anonforthis :

            I get that; I think “T3, T3, T3” drove my husband’s choice for Stanford. But in his view, that reputation gap didn’t affect his entire career, merely the first job availability (or second if you job-hop). Once you’ve been out for a few years and practicing, the name on your diploma starts mattering less than your case record. (That’s his view. I’m in academia, where people are ridiculous snobs. I prefer his view if it’s right.)

          • I think that your husband is right for the most part, and in private practice, I’ve experienced the same thing. For my current job, my immediate boss cared about my “Biglaw” (really large regional firm) experience, which I got mainly because of my fancy law school. Big boss cared much more about local connections and reputation. I’m sure it’ll be that way more and more throughout my career.

            But, as you and others have noted, academia and the “big name” public interest firms can be ridiculous snobs, so there’s a legitimately difficult choice between #3 and #5 that I don’t think would exist if OP’s friend were choosing between Columbia and whoever #7 is.

    • Interesting choice. I went to Columbia, and I honestly didn’t like it that much. And, given your friend’s choice, I would still pick Columbia. Graduating debt-free would probably compensate for any doors that the Harvard brand would open that Columbia couldn’t–particularly because I would not count on debt-relief programs being available 13 years from now. Maybe if your friend is only interested in the big-name public interest employers, Harvard would make enough of a difference, but I’m not convinced.

      For what it’s worth, at Columbia, there was a public interest crowd, and there were great public interest resources, which my public interest friends said were always available and under-utilized because so many of our classmates were going to law firms.

    • Anonymous :

      I would think Harvard would give a slight edge for the upper echelon academic jobs and probably prestigious clerkships? But I don’t know if it is worth a major amount of money for that edge.

      For public interest, I would honestly go to a state school with strong clinical programs and just get busy networking and volunteering. That being said, I had plenty of classmates who did that and still went to big law. It is hard to resist the money for two or three years.

    • Anonymous :

      Having graduated from HLS, I’d say definitely go to Columbia if only Columbia is offering a full ride. I went to work at some pretty elite places, and there were many Columbia lawyers there. Especially if you want to work in New York, I don’t think it is viewed as a significant step down from Harvard. Is her Columbia scholarship need based? If so, I would expect Harvard would match it. HLS doesn’t do merit scholarships as far as I’m aware. An additional nuance is that HLS does (I think) have some good loan forgiveness policies if you do go into public interest, but I believe you may have to commit for to relatively long amounts of time with a relatively low income. I think the takeaway is really that she should call Harvard to get the scoop and also do some careful research on loan forgiveness programs, particularly if she’s not 100% sure that she’ll do public interest.

      • Anonymous :

        I should also say, there may be some benefit to being a (slightly) bigger fish in a (slightly) smaller pond. For example, you’d probably be more likely to get on law review, graduate with honors, etc., and in my opinion, a Columbia law review editor/honors graduate/what have you looks better on paper than a generic Harvard grad.

    • anon a mouse :

      As others have said, there’s no single answer to this question, but I would unquestionably take zero debt. Even if H sets you up for somewhat “better” jobs there’s nothing like the freedom of being able to choose based on the job and not the salary you need to pay back loans.

      I also am skeptical that PSLF will exist in the same form in 3 years when she is done, given the leadership at the Dept of Ed. I would absolutely not make a decision now based on it.

    • Thanks, all! I have passed this on to my colleague. She is going to call Harvard tomorrow to see if they can give her any additional info on her financial aid package before making her final decision. As someone who works for a organization that is along the lines of the ACLU, I can say that these groups are definitely selective, sometimes needlessly so, but when you think about the fact that these cases are frequently resulting in appellate arguments (and potentially Supreme Court level arguments), I don’t think it’s crazy that they can afford to be selective with who they hire. That said, I don’t know any group that has really differentiated between Harvard and Columbia (or other top 5 schools), all other things being equal.

  3. Anonymous :

    What do you list as minimum salary requirement? I can’t submit the online application without entering numbers in the box. Whatever number I put there wouldn’t make sense without the context of benefits, etc.

  4. Had my annual physical this morning and had a frank convo with my doctor about my weight gain. We figured out that while I can be a little better about eating/exercise, the bottom line is my metabolism has pretty much thumped out. We discussed some weight loss drugs but as I’m TTC, decided against those. I want to be at a healthier weight but I don’t know what to do. I can’t cut carbs all the way as I suffer migraines if I do (I’ve tried). I’ve tried 1200-1400 calorie meal delivery programs but after a month I flatline. I’ve tried WW but haven’t had success with it since they changed the points program a decade ago. Any other suggestions? Help please?

    • Anonymous :

      Low-Gi diets help me. You can still eat carbs.

    • Anonymous :

      Read Presto! by Penn Jillette. He lost roughly 100 lbs in 3 months and has kept it off for years.

    • Shopaholic :

      What about counting your macros? It’s a bit of a learning curve but once you figure it out, you can definitely have carbs. Here’s an example of a daily meal plan:

      1: greek yogurt with berries, granola and nut butter
      2: spinach smoothie with some fruit (I also add coconut oil and protein powder but I’m also trying to build some muscle so YMMV)
      3: chicken, broccoli, brown rice
      4: veggies, babybel cheese
      5: tuna and avocado or big salad with protein and cheese or avocado

      Try having your carbs earlier in the day, and dinner just being smaller, with high protein and fat content.

    • I feel like I work for them, but I don’t – check out Whole 30; it’s a fast way to get a jump start & a non-depriving way to lose weight. You have to be strict with it – zero cheating – but it works and also, I think, can be an easier thing to keep doing as you can change your eating habits from it.

      • Anonymous :

        +1 In addition to all the other health benefits I earned from following a Whole30 compliant diet, I also catapulted myself into a significant amount of weight loss without ever feeling hungry or deprived.

    • JuniorMinion :

      What kind of exercise are you doing? The best bang for the time spent tends to be a mixture of resistance / weight training with high intensity interval training (there are low impact mods to this if you need that sort of thing) – I know this seems daunting, it did when I started it but there are tons of (mostly free!) resources on youtube and the like that have these types of workouts at a variety of levels. This may also help jumpstart your metabolism as building lean muscle is key in order to upping your body’s caloric needs.

      Additionally – are you sleeping well / enough? that can be a hidden culprit.

      Finally, on the food front, can you try eliminating most simple carbs / sugars? IE get your carbs from sweet potatoes, black beans, etc etc so you are still getting carbs to aid with migraines but without the attendant sugar spikes? There are hidden sugars in tons of stuff you wouldn’t expect (looking at you flavored yogurt and salad dressing). Also the other advice I got that has worked for me was to incorporate carbs as part of a complete meal as opposed to just eating carbs. Try to focus on satiety and making sure you are getting enough fat and protein as well as eating enough while making “good enough” food choices.

      Good luck in finding your happy and healthy place and try not to focus on the scale too much – I am 2 sizes smaller than I was pre fitness journey but 5-10 lbs heavier….

    • just in case :

      Since you are TTC and having metabolism issues, make sure you have gotten a thorough thyroid screening. The acceptable range for TTC was recently lowered, but not every practice is up-to-date on this. Some doctors will also test T4-T3 conversion rates to make sure they aren’t compromised, and some doctors will test for relevant antibodies.

    • Anonymous :

      One thing that’s worked for me is strongly bumping up my protein intake. Lots of nut butters, eggs, lean meat, and the like. And make sure you’re eating enough calories — cutting it down to 1200-1400 is actually way too low for most people, if you eat too few calories your body actually goes into starvation mode which wrecks your metabolism. I tried that for awhile, and have had much better luck with weight loss bumping up my calories to around 1700-1800 and making a substantial chunk of that from protein.

    • Start lifting weights. Seriously it’s a great way to give your metabolism a boost.

    • I’m an MD.

      There is an incredible book called the Obesity Code that has a cult following of female physicians. Essentially it is intermittent fasting and lowish carb. But the science behind it is well-documented and fascinating and (anecdotally at least) it is relatively easy and dedinitely sustainable.

    • Aquae Sulis :

      I only ever have success using the MyFitnessPal website and app. I set my weight loss target low – i.e. to lose just 1/2lb a week – so that I don’t have to reduce my intake to a point where I feel deprived, and I also continue to eat the foods I love (in smaller portions) to keep things simple, so that I will stick with it. It also has a really helpful community, which keeps me motivated. There is a premium version, which has a cost, but I don’t think it’s necessary – I’m down 2st so far, just using the free version.

  5. I’m a law firm partner and my main associate is having a baby this summer. I think we should do something for her to celebrate – what would hit the right celebratory tone without requiring people to feel like they need to buy gifts, etc.? Should I just ask the partners to contribute toward a gift and buy something (a gift card maybe) on behalf of the group and we all go out to lunch somewhere? One wrinkle is that we are part of two different groups at the firm – together only about 10 lawyers total. Also, FWIW, we have no recent precedent for this since we are all laterals and we either had kids before joining, or are happily without kids.

    • Maddie Ross :

      I think you can do something simpler than going out to lunch. In that small of a group, I’d suggest polling a few and see if there’s be interest in a group gift or gift card. If there is, take that up. Have a small celebration at 4:30 or 5 one day with cupcakes and present the gift.

      • yes this sounds perfect- if lunch is easy/ish that would be nice too but if its complicated with the two different groups just do this. I like to present the gift card with a book (for instance if you are at a Boston firm, a hard cover “make way for ducklings” or something like that) so she has one thing to unwrap but the real present is the gift card.

    • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

      This is very nice of you. Gift cards seem to be how we handle large life events in my group The people I work with got me a gift card when I got married, had baby 1, had baby 2, and got a green card (lol at the last one). Not a huge amount, but it was appreciated. Each came with a card signed by everyone in my group with a personalized message.

    • Anonagain :

      A lunch and card with everyone’s good wishes sounds fine to me. Gift cards also seem to be pretty traditional. But the best gift you can give her is your full, deliberate support now and once she’s back! Even well-meaning folks seem to slip into mommy-tracking mode without realizing it, and not everyone is well-meaning – please don’t let your group nudge her out of the game, and work with her (and encourage others to do so) so she can stay on course with her practice. And if you have a close enough connection, having a direct conversation with her before she goes out about your commitment to doing this would also be a fabulous gift.
      In other words, I’m guessing you don’t want to be this person: “Oh, I didn’t realize you might still want to travel to cover that [key opportunity] on your project, now that you have kids, so I gave it to the brand-new guy.” Or this one: “Well, when you have kids in this job, it’s tough to be a good lawyer OR a good mother.” ‘Cause those tend to end up turning into this: “Well, it turns out she really wasn’t a ‘fit’ for this kind of work after all – she left after she had kids.”
      Good luck to you both, and Happy Thursday, everyone!

      • double-bingo :

        I’m late to the game but in case you check back I just wanted to emphasize what Anonagain said. I just had my first child, and my firm had a nice little shower with cake and gifts, and the partners separately gave me very generous gifts after my daughter arrived. But hands-down the most meaningful and valuable thing was the clear expression by the partner I do the most work for that he has my back professionally and is committed to supporting my career path at the firm, including the family balance I want!

  6. Invisalign :

    Ladies who have done Invisalign:

    I just got mine and am having not insignificant pain. Not discomfort (which I expected, of course), but pain. Did any of you shell out for the Acceledent appliance, and did it really, actually reduce the pain/discomfort for you? I’m wary of it being just a gimmick, but if it will actually reduce pain, it might be worth it.

    Thanks in advance!

    • When did you get them on? I had crazy pain when I first got mine- like “what have I done” pain. I was so upset, I was thinking that no one had warned me that it would be this painful, I didn’t even want to eat because the thought of taking them out was so terrible. It goes away! It gets much much better by the end of week 2. My tip is whenever you change your trays, do it at night. so get the new ones in, pop an IB profen, and its much better by the morning (I don’t even usually have any pain by morning). I have never heard of the accelerant reducing pain, only speeding up the process.

      • Invisalign :

        Thank you for this. The orthodontist and her assistants all looked at me like I was crazy and the only person ever to tell them there was a lot of pain associated with the first tray, and I have been feeling like an insane person. Ibuprofen isn’t helping at all!

        • Is it super recent? I swear it gets so much better! I felt that way too- I felt stupid that I just felt it would just be so easy? I spent the first days wishing I just got braces. It gets way better- it still feels tight when I get new trays but nothing like those first days. The combo of getting the teeth filed and the new invisaligns were super painful. But it gets easier and easier.

          • Invisalign :

            Thank you, thank you. Yes, I’m only about 2.5 days in and it’s still SO painful. It doesn’t hurt at all to put the trays in or take them out, but I don’t have my attachments yet. It just literally hurts sitting here doing nothing. I even swabbed in between teeth with benzocaine to numb them and it still hurts pretty terribly. And I have a really high pain tolerance normally!!

    • Afraid I can’t answer that. But did want to say, I had discomfort more than pain most of the time. If it’s pretty intense, be sure the aligner is all the way seated. Sometimes a simple push is enough to get it to fall into place better and makes all the difference in the world.

    • Seattle Freeze :

      Very interested in comments on this question – I’m currently delaying Invisalign because I’m not prepared to handle recurring dental pain on top of my chronic migraines and increased workload. I so clearly remember the pain after getting my braces adjusted and not being able to chew for a week after each adjustment. Is it really better or does it get easier with Invisalign?

    • I completed invisalign with acceledent about 6 months ago. Although I am happy with the results, I do feel like invisalign is not fairly represented in terms of pain and how much it impacts your life!
      I can’t really compare to non-acceledent as I used the device my entire treatment, but I found the cost worth it for me. I was typically uncomfortable the first day or so, but by day 2-3 I wasn’t in pain. I also found that when I had to wear my trays for longer than the 1 week that was standard with the acceledent, they started to get a bit discolored and nasty. I strongly recommend springing for the acceledent!

    • Invisalign :

      Thanks, all! The aligners are properly seated and fit the teeth well–we actually had them reprinted because the first set didn’t sit right. I did start these at night, and I have been popping ibuprofen, but man oh man, this HURTS. Distracting pain. Not just discomfort. Pain that feels like this is a mistake and I cannot handle 6 months of this if this is just tray 1! But I’m only on day 1.5, so I’m praying it gets better? The first set was so painful I couldn’t concentrate on anything and the ortho had me stop the treatment while they reprinted the trays, so I hope that the reprinted trays fix that issue.

    • I agree with what others have said. The first tray or two were definitely the most painful for me. After that, each tray is different. The first few days of any tray are definitely more painful that the last few days of that tray. That said, I only really ever felt pain when I took the trays out and ate something crunch. Otherwise I didn’t notice them much when they were in.

  7. Nacho cheese :

    Have to get this off my chest, had an awful experience at lunch.

    We were doing a team lunch to welcome two new people to the department, and we were doing that thing where we all say a little about ourselves. My go-to is that I’m a swing dancer, so when it came to my turn that’s what I said. I was bracing myself for silly comments, and prepared to clarify info if needed, but I wasn’t prepared for someone making a joke about me being a swinger, which is what happened.

    When she made that comment, the whole table laughed, and I tried to go along with it but I couldn’t help but feel super embarrassed that someone turned my hobby into a joke about my sex life (I am not, by the way, a “swinger,” I am very much into monogamy, not that it should matter), at work, in front of a huge group, when I’ve only been here a couple months.

    I quietly finished my lunch, and quietly left the room as others had started leaving. Shortly after, the woman who made the comment apologized, and someone else spoke to me and assured me they had addressed the incident. But I’ve still been feeling really down all afternoon. In the hour or so that followed it felt like there was something heavy on my chest.

    Then I went to the fridge, and saw that to top all this off, someone had eaten one of my cheese sticks. Awesome.

    • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

      This is really inappropriate. Sorry this happened to you.

      Also, cheese sticks are awesome. But not when they disappear.

      • Nacho cheese :

        yeah they are! I don’t eat them often, more of a Babybel gal myself, but I won a free pack of them from the a grocery store “monopoly” promo and was super psyched about it, because free cheese is awesome. and these are, as I’m finding, super delicious.

        • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

          Our nanny packs lunches for our kids, as well as my husband and me. It sounds absurd, but it is absolutely awesome. We get the same thing as the kids, albeit in slightly larger quantities. Hence my love for string cheese.

    • Marshmallow :

      OMG. The person who made that joke should be mortified, not you.

      And there is a special circle of h3ll for cheese thieves.

    • Anonymous :

      I’m sorry this turned into a bad day for you.

      FWIW, I’m hugely surprised that you’ve apparently never gotten this joke before. I can absolutely see it happenning in a casual workplace (right or wrong), which also means it probably didn’t even register to everyone else as something to be embarrassed about.

      So I wouldn’t stress *at all* about this, especially if the person apologized and others commented.

      • Nacho cheese :

        I mean, I guess I have. We all do at some point. But never at work, and certainly not when I’m on the spot in a room full of people, all the attention made it worse much worse than someone making a bad joke at a party.

    • I’m sorry this happened! I don’t think that was an appropriate joke at all.

      But, OTOH, I think it says something about this person that she apologized, and about your workplace that it has been acknowledged that it was inappropriate and addressed it right away. So, silver lining, you now have objective evidence that you work someplace that respects you and will go to bat for you when people are inappropriate.

    • Anonymous :

      I find the cheese thief more annoying. Giving the inappropriate commenter the benefit of the doubt, I will assume she was not trying to deliberately embarrass you or anything. But thievery? Not cool. I still haven’t forgiven the person who drank my Sprite when I worked at the Gap in 1998.

      • Nacho cheese :

        I mean, I could give the thief the benefit of the doubt as well. Sometimes they do put food that’s up for grabs in there. Or maybe they’d brought cheese to work and thought “oh hey, I forgot I still had some of this!” Or . . . I dunno man, I know food theft happens, I just never understand the mentality. I did move it to a less visible area, and put a sticky note on it with my name, just in case. My cheese. Mine.

        • I have to admit, there have been times that I’ve been 95% sure that the cheese stick in the office fridge was mine, but not positive, and I’ve eaten it anyway.

    • lol – saw that coming from a 1000 miles away. As soon as I read “swing dancer” I knew the punch line would be a joke about being a swinger. Have you not worked in corporate America? Or lived in America for long? Here’s a clue – do whatever you want at home, but for work pick a hobby that can’t be mocked – maybe reading or running??

      • Srsly? It’s not a funny joke, or even clever. I would never expect another professional to make a joke about swinging in response to “swing dancing.” If you or your coworkers are that incompetent, anything is up for grabs. This is not OP’s fault.

      • Or just call it … Dancing.

      • Anonymous :

        Yeah I mean… I’m sorry OP but grow a thicker skin. This comment is pretty tame. Oh and don’t say you “dance” in your free time either. Or call yourself a “dancer.”

        My condolences about the cheese, though.

    • If it makes you feel better – I straightened my normally wavy hair at work once and this middle aged man at a big group lunch said, “Hey, did you get a Brazilian?! Looks nice!” Everyone there immediately started to giggle and I was mortified, as was he probably. He obviously meant did I straighten my hair out with a keratin treatment, mumbled something about how his wife does that, and we all laughed awkwardly.

      These things happen. We survived.

    • Anonymous :

      I think you’re overreacting.

      • Senior Attorney :

        Yeah, unless the joke was more graphic than you’ve described, I think a silly play on words isn’t a huge deal and I’m also surprised that you haven’t encountered it before.

        But the cheese thing would definitely make me ragey!

        And now I want a nanny to pack me a lunch every day…

      • Anonymous :

        I gotta say, I agree and I’m usually super-sensitive about comments made about me. There seems to be one person in every crowd that has to turn an innocent comment into something crude. When that happens, I usually just roll my eyes at the person and say, light-heartedly, “oh, get your mind out of the gutter.” Or sometimes I’ll say, again light-heartedly, “whoa, where’d you get that from what I said? Got a secret you want to tell us?” Because honestly, comments like that say more about the commenter than they do about you, and everyone knows it.

        I grew up in a family where teasing was love, and if I hadn’t learned to have a thick skin and give it back a little bit, I wouldn’t have survived. :-) If you become known as the sensitive person in the office who takes big offense at little things, you’ll either become a target, or people will avoid you. Neither is good for your career.

    • Chiming late but I have to say, you need to learn to brush things off and move on. It wasn’t the greatest comment ever but it also wasn’t directed at you or your sexuality. It was an inept play on words. You can’t let things like this torment you. Just keep rolling along.

  8. I have this bag in beige and yellow on the inside. I am completely in love with it. It’s my new work bag!

  9. Would you stay in an air bnb if it was the same price per person in the same location as a hotel? In a hotel you have daily cleaning, a concierge, room service, and probably better security. Am I missing something?

    • Anonymous :

      In a hotel, you don’t have a private kitchen. If you’re cheap and/or prefer to cook your own food (whether because of dietary issues or allergies or whatever), an air bnb is the better choice.

    • Senior Attorney :

      Yeah, it’s just a different experience. If I wanted to cook I’d pick the Air BNB. Also at the Air BNB there is probably more/better common areas instead of just bedrooms.

    • Anonymous :

      It depends on whether you like a hotel environment or a more apartment-like environment. I’d stay in the hotel (even though I never take advantage of the concierge or room service) because I just like that environment and I don’t want to cook or clean up after myself on vacation. But a lot of people like feeling like they’re home when they’re on vacation and enjoy having a kitchen in which to cook.

    • Anonymous :

      My SO and I have found that buying a small amount of groceries to use in an AirBNB is much better for us. Going out for breakfast (as opposed to brunch) is expensive and it’s hard to feel like you’re getting the right quality value. As SA said, it’s also nice to have somewhere private to hang out that is not a bed.

    • Personal preference for unique or different spaces? I like finding unique properties on Airbnb. Hotels are boring to me, and I would much rather stay in a quirky Airbnb place then and a standard, boring hotel. I rented a sailboat one time for an overnight after a wedding. No AC, boat head, boat bed, but it was cool!

      Different strokes for different folks.

    • Triangle Pose :

      Yes, airbnb all the way. I hate that you can’t open windows in hotel rooms, I like cooking my own meals, I know what I want to do more than a concierge (hello internet) and can just use Amex concierge to get tickets to shows or reservations or whatever else concierges do other than make local recommendations. Plus I like private spaces airbnbs offer, I don’t want to have to interact with other tourists in elevators or lobbies or hotel bars – for me it’s about the “getaway” feeling and not even the most luxurious hotel gives me that when I’m still physically next to other travelers.

    • Yes, because I personally prefer having more space & the ability to cook. I also like feeling “local” when I travel, especially for long periods of time. I prefer a luxury hotel for a quick weekend/recharge, but for a long vacation I’ll spend about the same amount to rent a flat/house/apartment, etc.

    • Security doesn’t usually cross my mind as a reason to stay in a hotel. Interesting.

    • I’d almost always choose a house or apt. over a hotel. Ex-H and I started renting apartments (usually VRBO, not Air BnB) or bigger places like the Residence Inns once DS became a giant teenager; we got spoiled and never went back to regular hotels.

      I echo most of the other comments – it’s nice to have a kitchen to have food around if you don’t want to go out or to spend money just for breakfast, or if one person likes to sleep late and the other gets hungry early, or if you want a full pot of coffee and not one measly cup. I also like having a fridge for leftovers or a bottle of wine, and it’s nice sometimes to have laundry facilities if you’re going to be there for more than a few days. And it’s especially great to have a living room/dining area/space to hang out that is not the bedroom. My SO and I just did a long weekend in Chicago in a very nice but business-oriented hotel that had exactly one chair in the room.

    • Depends on the length of the trip. Love having a kitchen for breakfast and snacks when on vacation. Though make sure that there is a grocery store nearby.

    • I love the amenities of a hotel if it’s just me or just me and DH. I love the kitchen and extra space of an AirBNB if we’re with our toddler or a group of friends.

    • Anonymous :

      I like hotels, but on a personal trip I wouldn’t consider room service – it’s paying through the nose for what is mediocre food. I also wouldn’t really us a conciege – it’s just not my style. Some areas don’t have a lot of hotels, so airbnb provides more places to stay.

    • The one perk of a hotel that you don’t mention is the ability to leave your bags with the front desk in the event that you have a super late or early flight either to or from and aren’t renting a car. I find AirBnB to be much more of a pain with this sort of thing because it’s very host dependent whereas with a hotel it’s never been an issue.

      • But otherwise – I’d say that you can save a lot of money over a hotel even if the two are priced similarly by cooking your own meals. Think of it more as a hotel room with lots of amenities in one hotel vs. a suite hotel room in a hotel without many amenities in another.

    • Work trip – hotel
      Personal trip – air bnb, but only if a full residence and not just a room in someone’s house, and only if a hefty proportion of the reviews used the word “spotless.”

  10. Anonymous :

    For folks who like jazz and listen to music at work, I have recently discovered the Bill Evans Trio and think it’s great listen-while-you-work music. Very calm piano jazz, available on Spotify. I can really only listen to instrumental music while I work, or else I concentrate too much on the music and not on working. I was burned out world music and this has been a nice change.

    • My husband is a huge Bill Evans fan – even heard him live a few times years ago. He got me listening to his music and I just love it – so melodic and lyrical with wonderful harmony. My favorite tune is “Waltz For Debby”.

      • It’s a solo piece but I LOVE Peace Piece. It’s my favorite anything ever.

        • Oh I love that one too. I just get lost in it. His playing seems to unveil such beauty. It’s hard to put in to words.

    • Try “Jazz Samba” by Stan Getz. I think. You’ll like it.

    • And the Take Five album by Dave Brubeck

      • I have those on my iPod. I love bossa nova – some romantic. I also like the Modern Jazz Quartet and Miles Davis Kind of Blue and Sketches of Spain.

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