Coffee Break: Okala Pump

Sam Edelman OkalaWe’ve featured this shoe on the blog before, but at this point I think it’s attaining “classics” status — it’s now available in 10 colors, with 37 glowing reviews on Zappos (and more on Nordstrom). It’s $109-$130, although Amazon does have a few colors on sale in lucky sizes. Sam Edelman Okala



  1. Banana Qs :

    They don’t seem to have any lightweight wool suiting dresses at the moment. Any guesses as to whether they might by the end of July? I have a credit with them that is going to expire then. I’d like to buy some suiting pieces, but like find that I wear dresses + jackets a lot and want to have as many matching pieces as possible (so, also, do their gray and black wool offering stay consistent if purchased reasonably close in time?).

    I love that their wool pants are lined, so I am hoping that they fit (slight pear in the hips and a bit of tummy — Martin Fit? or Jackson?).

    • Yes for both black and gray.

      • To clarify (my first reply got eaten and I was frustrated when I tried to reply again): I’ve had success in matching both black and gray BR tropical wool suits over the years. I purchased an interview suit initially in 2009 and was able to find matching pencil skirts and pants even this year (2014). I love their tropical wool, which makes it difficult to buy the polyestor dresses featured and recommended on this site, as I enjoy the look I get from wearing tropical wool. I’ve also machine washed my dresses on delicates and air dried without a problem, but won’t do that for my blazers.

    • I doubt that they will be adding wool during the summer.

    • Try boss black. I have machine washed the virgin wool ones. They are classic.

  2. Oh! Great pick, Kat! I love these pump’s! I am not sure I can use my clotheing allowance for these b/c they are open backed, and the manageing partner will NOT reimburse for sandal’s. I will tell him these are for WORK, and if the judge like’s them, I can get reimbursed. Mabye I should send the judge an email, with this picture, and if he say’s thumb’s up, I can get them? YAY!!!!!!

    • I think that judge is unprofessional and ought to be sanctioned. This is really no more than an odious form of sexual harassment, though not overt–you dress the way I like you win. This is unfair to the litigants if one party has the judge in her pocket, but unfair also to her because she is not winning on the merits.

  3. Do people wear these with pants or skirts/dresses? I think the ankle strap could be stumpifying for me, and something about them strikes me as a little dominatrix-y, but I do think they could look cute peeking out from pants. Real world experience?

    • TO Lawyer :

      I have two pairs of these and I wear them under skirts/dresses and occasionally jeans on a casual day. I find they’re actually very flattering under skirts/dresses but I tend to have slender ankles so I don’t know if that makes a difference. I’ve never thought of them as dominatrix-y.

      Also, these are insanely comfortable. I convinced my mom to buy a pair too and after protesting that she needs chunkier heels, she wore them for a party where she was on her feet for hours and didn’t complain once. So I would say that’s a win.

    • I have these in black and wear them with both skirts/dresses and pants. I am short (5’0″) but I don’t feel like they make me look stumpy. They are also quite comfortable. Definitely one of my favorite pairs of shoes.

    • Between all the good Zappos reviews and hearing from a fellow short person, I may go for them.

    • anon-oh-no :

      im with you. i have never seen a pair of black ankle strap shoes on me or anyone else shorter than 5’9 that didnt look stumpy. the only way i ever wear ankle straps is in a nude/tan/gold color.

    • I love these shoes with a pair of jeans or slacks. The ankle strap keeps your pants from bunching under your heels and are more comfortable than a pump. (Although I have weak ankles and like the reinforcement.)

  4. Famouscait :

    Things seemed to be getting pretty testy on the earlier thread today, but it is in a very sincere spirit that I thought I’d come in early with a philosophical question for you lawyers out there…

    I’m wondering if someone can explain to me their ethical or personal stance on being a criminal defense attorney. I’m thinking specifically about the dissonance between someone who has committed a crime but wants to plead “Not Guilty.” I realize that in the U.S. we’re all innocent until proven guilty, but the case I’m personally struggling with has to do with someone who *documented* their heinous crimes against a child. With photos. And videos.

    The logical part of me knows he deserves a fair trial and therefore needs a professional to defend him. Is that the driving force in a case like this? My upset, emotional self is stuck on the fact that his lawyer will be arguing (at least to a certain degree, in my understanding) that he’s done nothing wrong. Am I wrong about that? Is there a lawyer’s equivalent to “First, do no harm”? I’d love to hear an insightful response. (And again, I’m by no means trying to condemn the attorneys.)

    • Manhattanite :

      One thought is the integrity of the system. The defense attorney is making sure that the prosecutors are playing by all the rules and not cutting any corners. The thought is that if you cut corners with the true bad guys, then you can also cut corners on the wrongly accused as well.

      • +1 . The criminal defense attorney makes sure that his or her client gets a fair trial — i.e., the evidence was obtained properly, that the prosecutor proves each element of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt, etc. An attorney has a duty to zealously represent her client, but also has a duty of candor to the tribunal. For example, an attorney would not argue that the client had “done nothing wrong” if she knows that to be false, but would ensure the client received a fair trial, argue that the prosecutor had not amassed sufficient, admissible evidence as to each element of the crime, etc.

        • Famouscait :

          This is really helpful – thank you both.

        • This is really thought-provoking. It’s not something I ever really thought hard about, but from time to time did wonder what defense attorneys think when they have to defend clients they are pretty certain are guilty. Hearing it put this way actually makes me incredibly proud of the US law system.

        • Yes. Legal insufficiency re: the elements is a huge issue, as well as 4th/5th/6th Amendment violations. Most of the time, it’s not about guilt and innocence. We want the law to grow and change in ways that protect us all.

          • “Most of the time, it’s not about guild and innocence. We want the law to grow and change in ways that protect us all.”

            Well said.

        • anon-oh-no :

          this isnt exactly right. a lawyer could argue ethically that the client had “done nothing wrong” so long as the lawyer was not suborning perjury (putting the client on the stand to lie) or lying/purposefully mis-representing things to the court.

          but otherwise, i think this is a pretty good summary of the rationale.

          and FWIW, im not a criminal defense lawyer by trade, but it is the only kind of pro bono work i do, for the specific reason that i believe in the system and believe that it needs to be properly maintained. I always have at least one criminal defense case going on; i’ve tried them to a jury, argued on appeal, habeas etc. i’ve had clients i truely believe are innocent, clients i know did it but with justification, prosecutorial misconduct, etc, and clients i have no idea whta the truth is. just as with civil cases, your job as an attorney is to make the best arguments for your client and get the best outcome possible for your client. i’ve never had trouble sleeping at night, but i often wonder how many prosecutors do.

          • Actually the ethical rules in most jurisdictions would prevent an attorney from stating that the client had done nothing wrong if the attorney knows that he did. In that case, the attorney can argue that the government has not proven that the client did anything wrong.

    • Woods-comma-Elle :

      I’m not a criminal defence attorney, but I am interested in hearing the responses.

      Ultimately, as a matter of ethical/professional conduct rules, you first obligation is to the court and you are not under any circumstances to do anything to mislead the court. That means, effectively, that if you know your guy did it (say, they confessed to you), then you are not allowed to do things like put him on the stand and ask him ‘did you do it’, if you know he is going to say no because, well, you’d be knowingly misleading the court.

      However, as I understand it, there is a very fine line between ‘knowing’ and being ‘pretty sure’ they did it. As such, I would imagine, if one were a criminal defence attorney and was pretty sure, one might indicate to one’s client that such client should not, under any circumstances, actually tell you whether or not they did it. If they did not it and you know about it, you are in much more of a pickle than if you just think maybe they did it. Then, you have tread very carefully and, potentially, stop representing them.

      Based on the above, my feeling is that you wouldn’t necessarily be able, in the circumstances you describe above, to say ‘honest, he didn’t do anything’, but you case might more be based on a defence around why he did do it, but shouldn’t be held accountable.

      The above is, of course, somewhat of a ‘bar exam’ answer to the dilemma which is why I’d be interested to hear from people who actually work in this area on a day-to-day basis!

      • Woods-comma-Elle :

        Also, not everyone is guilty, and if you started a system whereby all lawyers would refuse to represent someone because they think that person is scum of the earth, then you would end up with a bunch of unrepresented defendants who, as Manhattanite says, could end up at the wrong end of abuse of the system (and then potentially get off that way). One might even argue there would be then be no need for trials because the inability to get representation indicates the person is so vile that they might as well skip go and go straight to jail.

      • Criminal defense attorney here. Most of my clients, even those who commit pretty terrible crimes, aren’t bad people per se. Their behavior usually makes sense in the context of their lives even if it is maladaptive. Also, there isn’t a ton of violent crime in this country anymore so most cases are drug/property crimes that aren’t particularly heinous. Most of my cases resolve in plea agreements and I see it often as a collaborative process–I want the best deal for my client and I understand that the prosecutor has a job to do also. The issue is how can we come up with a solution that we all can live with.

        I take cases to trial when: 1. I have good facts; and/or 2. I have a stupid offer; or 3. My client won’t take a reasonable offer because they are unreasonable.

        The criminal justice system is incredibly racist and there are economic disparities as well. It is unfair and profoundly broken. My job is to stand with my client against the power of the government–after all, how much do you trust the government to do the right thing or get things right? I don’t trust them at all so that’s why I do what I do.

    • Anne Shirley :

      I believe wholeheartedly that our system of justice is at it’s best when every accused gets a vigorous defense. I’m not out there defending terrorists and child molesters but I’m grateful someone is. I don’t think that should keep them up at night. If anything, they are doing no harm by providing representation to which we are all constitutionally entitled.

      • Famouscait :

        I also agree with your first sentence wholeheartedly. But I can also imagine that it would be a challenging position to be in as that attorney. On a different scale: I think it would be really hard to be a social worker and therefore, at times, seeing some people make the wrong choices over and over and over again. It’s not that I want that social worker to stop doing her job or that she should feel like she’s doing harm. But how does she keep going into that office and doing the job? How does she stay motivated?

        • You have to believe in the big picture. As a social worker, you have to believe that you are ultimately helping some people lead better lives and as a defense attorney you have to believe in the justice system as whole. Honestly, I think in some ways it’s harder to be a defense attorney if you think all of your clients are innocent. It’s easy to burn out that way very quickly, and it’s also just not realistic. But just because your client did X doesn’t mean he should get a maximum penalty, for instance; it’s your job to put the client in the best position given the circumstances. I think there is a frequent misconception that defense attorneys’ ultimate goal is to let the guilty go free, and that’s not really the case.

          Also, just as a corollary, if you’re a prosecutor, you may have defendants that you find sympathetic or that you aren’t 100% certain deserve to go to jail, but as long as you think you can prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt (which doesn’t mean beyond all doubt), or if you know they broke the law (even a law you disagree with), you may have to bring the case forward. Again, you just have to believe in the ultimate system and recognize that it only works when everyone plays their role.

          • I agree with all of that. I’ll also point out that “not guilty” is very rarely a lasting defense – I’ve only done a little bit of criminal work, but every single time, the goal has been to get a deal, not to get an acquittal. Remember that very few criminal cases go to trial; a plea is entered in more than 90% of them (which comes with its own problems, of course).

        • Silvercurls :

          Really good questions! I think the only answer is “different strokes for different folks” and thank goodness we’re not all wired identically! People who are happy in their chosen professions can accept workplace challenges that the rest of us would find impossible. Thus the hospice worker focuses on the patient’s quality of life throughout each day; the defense attorney labors in the belief that society is diminished if we don’t administer justice equally to the car-crasher-by-bad-luck and the car-totaller-due-to-careless-boozing; and the social worker hopes that eventually all clients will see how to make choices that don’t harm themselves or other people. I’m not a therapist because I could never bear to spend 40 hrs each week with other people’s suffering, but I’m glad that some people _did_ choose to be counselors! (I also suspect that the happiest & most effective counselors are those folks who look past the pain to marvel at their clients’ resilience.) Most people would choose to run screaming out of the room rather than proofread a document; some of us enjoy using our eye for detail to fix typos before the material goes public. Etc.

          This is starting to sound like a snarky dismissal but I _really_ don’t intend it that way! I’m so grateful that our world has such diverse inhabitants. We need to address all kinds of problems in this world, from the serious (highway infrastructure! orthopedic surgery! crops that feed people efficiently! ways to reduce maternal death during childbirth! how to bring home the Nigerian schoolgirls! how to eradicate or at least significantly minimize poverty!) to the still-serious-but-not-life-threatening (poetry! shapes! sculpture! the way that a straight seam hangs differently in corduroy and in chiffon! the perfect shade of gray nail polish!).

          • Famouscait :

            Not taken as snark at all! In fact, your last bit made me laugh – I’d like to be the person who names that perfect shade of gray nail polish! #dreamjob

    • His lawyer is not arguing that he’s done nothing wrong. His lawyer’s job is to argue that the government has not proved its case. That’s what the “innocent until proven guilty” is all about: emphasis on “proven,” NOT on “innocent.” A defendant can’t be compelled to admit guilt even is he is guilty; therefore, he has the right to hold the government to its burden of proof. That’s all his lawyer will likely be arguing. And the lawyer is not doing any “harm” by requiring that of the government; in fact, she is upholding the most basic constitutional rights— the right to trial by jury, the right against self-incrimination. If a defendant decides to stand on his rights, having a lawyer ensures a fair trial—and that is very important if, as you suggest, the person is clearly guilty. An unfair trial means a successful appeal. A fair trial means a valid conviction.

      • Famouscait :

        I really like your point about the emphasis on “proven”. I have never thought of it like that before.

      • Senior Attorney :

        I completely agree with this. Legal guilt does not equal “he did not, as a matter of fact, do the deed.” Legal guilt = “the government proved every element of the charge against the defendant beyond a reasonable doubt.” Not the same thing. Similarly “not guilty” doesn’t mean, for example, “he didn’t kill the guy.” It means “the government didn’t prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant committed whatever variety of homicide with which he was charged.”

    • I am a criminal defense attorney. In the eyes of the law, my clients are innocent, unless and until the State proves them guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. This is one of the basic rights guaranteed by our constitution. I am also a public defender and therefore take any case that is assigned to me, regardless of the crime. Of course, I do not support these crimes and often feel sad for the victims, but when it is time to represent my client–holding the State to their burden is what I am focused on. Because when that starts to slide, we are truly no longer a free society. People are wrongly accused all the time (I understand the evidence seems quite strong in the case you are referring to) but in order for the system to work, it has to work in the most henious of cases as well.

      And ethically, there is not really an equivalent to “do no harm.” We of course cannot lie to the court or help our client present evidence that we know to be false, but my primary duty as a criminal defense attorney is to represent my client. And at the end of the day, in most cases, the system works correctly and he or she will be punished accordingly.

      • Famouscait :

        Thanks for your POV. This particular trial is so far off that I struggle to remember your final point that, “… at the end of the day, in most cases, the system works correctly and he or she will be punished accordingly.” That helps.

      • I think people lose sight of the fact that in reality criminal defense attorneys are among the few attorneys who actually practice constitutional law. By ensuring drug dealers aren’t unreasonably searched by overzealous cops defense attorneys make our society more free.

      • + 1 million. I’m a public defender as well, but focus mainly on appeals.

    • Banana Qs :

      I will try. By way of background, I didn’t always live here and lived through a revolution as a child. People would disappear, tourture for political prisoners was routine, and even today women have severely curtailed rights. “Rule of law” is hugely important to me.

      Making sure that the state has to prove every single element of its case, every time, to limit the liberty or take the property or take the life of a person is very important. It’s not just arguing that A didn’t do B. It’s making sure that the state has produced the evidence that it has, that the state has fairly gotten the evidence it has, and that it has proven its case to a judge or jury (or you know it could so you make a plea deal). Also important: arguing against overreach (what do you do when our laws are so complex that businesses and people likely violate them all the time — FCPA or just mere motor vehicle laws), mitigating factors at sentencing, etc. Also, there are records on legal procedings (usually unless there is a child victim of particular s_x crimes), so all of this happens with sunshine and not in secret.

      My freedom and liberty are enhanced by knowing that random bad things just can’t happen here (well, they can, but with people making a stink about it). I can speak out when I want to (cf vague cyber bulling laws). You get the idea.

    • Daydreamer :

      I should preface this by saying that I work in a totally corporate lawyer job, with no link to criminal law at all, and I don’t (and never did) have the mental fortitude to work in criminal or family law, and I really respect those lawyers who do that work.

      I also believe that society needs criminal defence lawyers . The government should not be allowed to remove people from society or punish them without being able to prove all the requisite elements of the crime. Criminal defence lawyers are a valuable check against what would otherwise be the unfettered discretion of the government (through police and the Crown) to punish individuals. And while I can completely make the logical arguments, I still think that I wouldn’t be able to do their job, but I am really glad that some people can indeed handle it.

    • National_Anthem :

      Not a criminal defense attorney, but I have some prosecution experience….

      I think it’s important to remember/realize a plea of not guilty after being charged isn’t the same as claiming innocence (lots of people who plead not guilty claim they are innocent, but not everyone).. When you plead not guilty, you might be waiting for your attorney to come to some sort of plea agreement with the prosecutor, or waiting to find out through discovery what the evidence against you looks like. Many people plead not guilty and then later in the process enter a guilty plea.

      I think of a not guilty plea more as a “let’s see what you can prove” plea.

    • I am an criminal defense appellate attorney. To me, the entire system rests on the government following the rules in order to lock people up. WE HAVE TO MAKE SURE THE RULES ARE FOLLOWED. Otherwise, what is the point of anything in any area of the law? Ends don’t justify means. I certainly do not “like” most of my clients, but I fight like hell to make sure that their rights have not been violated (bad searches, improper admission of evidence, etc.) in the same way I would fight for my own family. The day I have an innocent client I’m sure I’ll be a million times more scared. That being said, I have a choice as to which cases I will handle. I personally couldn’t handle animal abuse cases because I can’t look at the photos without being sick. A lot of people feel that way about sex crimes. That’s why it’s good to have a wide variety of people with different temperaments to do this kind of work.

      I know a lot of people don’t get it and will never get it. It’s about justice – not justice in arguing someone’s innocence necessarily – but justice in the sense that if the government is going to take away someone’s right to be free, it better follow the rules.

    • Everyone else has already covered what I would have said about the integrity of the system. You want to know the rules are being followed if you are ever accused of a crime. Just want to add a quote that I think list rates this idea. It’s from a Phil ochs song called power and glory: “we’re only as rich as the poorest of the poor/ only as free as a padlocked prison door/ only as proud as our love for this land/only as tall as we stand.” Gets me every time.

      • Phil Ochs! I love him so much. And that’s a great song. “Here is a land full of power and glory/beauty that words cannot recall/her power shall rest on the strength of her freedom/her glory shall rest on us all.”

        To me, it’s one of the purest expressions of patriotism out there: our freedom (which is our glory and gift) depends on us and what we will choose to do, not on others. I like it because it charges all of the greatest critics of the US with the obligation of making this the country that we want it to be.

        • Yes! After I posted my comment I realized I should have included that part of the song in my quote as well….but typing on my phone is hard.

          Dorky confession: when I have an important motion to argue, that song is on the playlist I listen to on the way to the courthouse to get pumped about what I have to do and to ease my nerves. And I’m not a criminal defense attorney.

    • One more point – in a case like the one you describe, the lawyer would not be arguing that the person did nothing wrong. He or she may argue about the prejudicial impact of certain evidence or procedural things that police did instead.

    • I am not a criminal defense attorney, but my work involves representation of people who frequently have criminal histories. I have some personal philosophies that make me strongly believe in the need for assistance (legal defense and otherwise) to criminal defendants and those convicted of crimes.

      Many people are wrongly accused. Certainly not everybody, but it happens more frequently than one might think. It’s really easy to take a plea and have a conviction permanently on your record than it is to actually fight the case and take it to trial (private attorneys are expensive, you have to keep missing work to go to court dates, etc.). This is unfortunate and definitely makes me appreciate the private attorneys and public defenders who take criminal cases to trial and force the government to prove its case.

      Many people who are guilty have sufficient mitigating circumstances that they should not receive the maximum penalty for their crimes.

      Collateral consequences can be severe, can impact more people than just the defendant, and can sometimes provide far more “punishment” for a crime than is appropriate for the wrong act that the defendant committed. Severe collateral consequences can include deportation, loss of public housing for the whole family if defendant returns home to live for them, difficulty getting a job, etc.

      Finally, I don’t believe jail is really an effective or useful tool in most cases and I would honestly rather see guilty people go free than go to jail for certain crimes, such as statutory rape where the s*x was consensual but for the fact that the 16-year-old “victim” can’t legally consent, many drug possession crimes, prostitution. If there were more substance abuse treatment and counseling available to help people get their life back on track, rather than throw them in jail for (what to me are relatively) minor offenses, I’d possibly feel more confident in our criminal justice system. If for instance, the main people going to jail were actually murderers, rapists and others who have committed serious and/or violent crimes.

      Finally, I would also honestly rather see 10 guilty men go free than 1 innocent man go to jail.

    • Senior Attorney :

      And also? Let’s not forget that in the vast majority of cases, the criminal defense attorney negotiates a plea deal that involves his or her client pleading guilty or no contest to some charge. It’s a rare criminal defendant who “gets off” entirely.

      • anon-oh-no :

        but it is unfortunatly not rare that an innocent defendant is convicted.

    • In the words of the late great Sam Dash, may he rest in peace, to my first year lawschool class, when you defend someone charged with a crime you defend the criminal justice system and all our civil rights that shaped it to what it is today.

    • This is an interesting thread with some very insightful responses. I am not a lawyer or a US citizen but I have lived here for over 14 years. I have enormous amount of respect for rule of law, principle of it and basics of the constitution in this country. Sure in some cases US can seem like an incredibly litigious society but the fact that rule of law functions as it does is indeed fascinating for a foreigner. I come from a country where the legal system is basically a joke, forget about such ideals of justice as you ladies have highlighted. Even lawyers and judges are incredibly prejudicial with no sense of ethics just because of how the society functions. If you are stuck in a case, even something as simple property division or divorce or alimony payments, you will waste years and decades in courts with no practical resolution. If you are a poor who is wrongly accused, forget it, your life is over.

  5. I am in the rare and semi-gleeful state of being able to have whatever I want for dinner tonight. No one else will be home, so none of the normal worries about cooking a healthy family meal and coordinating schedules. This dinner will likely be consumed in front a television, sans interruptions, in sweatpants, and without regard for calories. In blissful solitude (well, with a cat, which is not that different). I am sort of considering just having a pint of ice cream, but if I decide on actual food, it will probably be Thai food or a burrito.
    For a fun afternoon diversion, I was just wondering what your go-to comfort / happy meals are…especially when no one is looking.

    • locomotive :

      beef drunken noodles and mango-sticky rice for dessert from my favorite thai place. its a terribly unhealthy and super delicious meal.

      • You’re making me secretly hope my husband has to work late tonight. How horrible is that???

    • A huge bowlful of tomatoey, cheesy pasta…usually with a ton of sauteed vegetables mixed in because my husband won’t eat those in his pasta. Or in the winter, a huge bowl of chili (which the husband also won’t eat).

    • TV, sweatpants and good food sounds like my kind of fun! Comfort food for me is Indian food, especially my mom’s cooking. I also love pizza and pasta. For dessert, chocolate chip cookies warm out of the oven with some vanilla ice cream.

    • Famouscait :

      Love it! Mac n cheese, or a pint of Ben & Jerry’s.

    • McGiggles :

      Vegetarian Chipotle burrito with all the fixings!

    • long time lurker :

      Wine. Thin crust margarita pizza with real mozzarella. Thai – spicy beef salad, papaya salad, fried shrimp appetizer things. Fried dumplings. Chocolate and scotch.

    • I’ll get a personal pizza from Whole Foods and have that with a glass or two of wine. Or just a bowl of peanut butter Cheerios. Or if I’m really lazy (too lazy to pour milk), I’ll have black pepper popcorn with peanuts sprinkled on top.

      • anon-oh-no :

        there is such a thing as peanut butter cheerios? whoa.

      • ContractsinTX :

        I think we’re Foodie Friends! When home alone, it’s either pizza, chocolate cheerios, or popcorn. If I’m feeling fancy – I brown the butter before drizzling it on top. Yummm.

    • A Nonny Moose :

      Depending on how fancy I feel, either homemade nachos and beer or a nice chunk of triple creme, crackers or a fresh baguette and a Demi-bottle of champagne.

    • Clementine :

      Wine and Salted Caramel Gelato has got to be pretty high up there for me! Also, ridiculously garlicky caesar salads- like so much garlic it comes out of your pores.

    • Wine, brie, prosciutto, and crackers, maybe with some carrots. Or if I’m feeling ambitious, seared tuna with a salad. If I’m ordering takeout, Indian or Sushi.

    • Chicken pot pie, fettuccine alfredo, lasagna with bechamel cream sauce, cheese quesadillas (multiple types of cheese so its a sampler) or nutella filled crescent rolls dusted with a little sugar on top.

      Clearly, I abide by the three Cs: carbs, cheese and chocolate

      • Silvercurls :

        Indian(veggie) or Chinese (sometimes veggie, sometimes chicken) takeout, eaten at home with plastic utensils because our kitchen is officially kosher. This leads directly to the Guilt Trifecta b/c I’m clogging the landfill with disposable dishware–Sin #1–to simultaneously maintain and violate my religious standards–Sins #2 & 3! Oh, wait, there’s also Humblebragging about my so-called Piety–Sins #4 & 5. Not to mention Ethnic Dithering, because I refuse to stop eating in the (not always kosher) homes of friends & family–I mean, what good is religion if it outlaws fellowship and breaking bread with people?!

        Ahem. Threadjack over, at least for the time being.

        • Thank you, Silvercurls – nice to hear I’m not the only one! (The Ethnic Dithering is a classic – who am I to tell my lovely friends that all the trouble they’ve gone to to prepare a meal I can theoretically eat was useless because the frying pan was contaminated from the start…)

    • Miz Swizz :

      How many phone chargers do you use at home? We just moved into a house twice the size of our old apartment so it isn’t as convenient to charge phones in the bedroom when we’re in other rooms but buying 2 more chargers seems excessive.

      • Miz Swizz :

        Not sure how this ended up here…

      • A little hesitant to ask given the previous snark discussion, but can’t you just unplug the bedroom charger and bring it into the other room when needed?

        • I can see not wanting to carry it back and forth. The docking station is a good idea.

      • I live in a studio so just one, but if you’re reluctant to get a second set of plain chargers, what about something like speakers that double as a charging dock?

      • Sydney Bristow :

        I’m someone who doesn’t like to have a lot of “stuff” but I have 2 chargers and am likely going to get a third. One lives in my purse so I can use it at work and the other one is in the living room. After my phone died overnight last week, I think I’m going to get a 3rd one for the bedroom. It is relatively cheap, doesn’t take much space, and makes my life easier so I don’t think it is excessive at all.

      • I only charge my phone at night, so I just use the one charger in the bedroom.

        • anon-oh-no :

          this is what i do too. though i have a charger at work, so it gets charged during the day and stays with me until bed time, when i plug it in to charge and use it as an alarm clock.

      • We have ~8 chargers, with them pretty much in every room of the house. That’s more of a function of getting chargers with every new phone, kindle, etc. Since everyone but Apple standardized to MicroUSB, we seem to have more than we need.

      • I have one in my handbag, and one by my bed. I often also plug one in in the TV room so it seems like it’s an easily justifiable thing!

        Personally, I also use my iPad in the kitchen a lot (watching YouTube while chopping onions, for example) so I’d like to put a charger in there. And a radio…. oh, the changes I’ll make when I no longer houseshare!

      • Just one at home, but I also have one at work, one at my car, and one at my boyfriend’s house. Can’t be too careful!

      • A lot. For 2 of us, we have 3 chargers in the bedroom (I have 2 phones with microUSB, BF has 1 older iphone), 2 chargers in the kitchen downstairs (1 microUSB, 1 old style), 2 chargers in the car (again 1 for each style), and then I keep a charger at the office and 1 in my laptop bag for travel. So I have 6 chargers for my 2 phones and 1 charger for BF’s phone.

      • You can’t have too many chargers. We have at least 4 in the house and I have another at the office.

    • Go-to comfort meal for me is spaghetti in a ground beef sauce just like my mom used to make it – with a roux and a lot of ketchup.

    • Trader Joe frozen spinach paneer (whatever the Indian dish is called that’s basically creamed spinach with chunks of cheese in it), a piece of naan, and either a beer or a glass of dry rose.

    • Senior Attorney :

      Pan-fried ramen with kale.
      Cheese and crackers.
      Mac n cheese.

      Not all at once, usually. But all with wine and television.

    • TO Lawyer :

      Now I want to cancel my date tonight and eat comfort food with wine in front of my TV…

    • Need to Improve :

      Kraft macaroni and cheese or a pizza, out of the pot/box, with bottle of wine, watching bad television.

      I love doing this when I get a night without the family.

    • S in Chicago :

      I like to do a mix of favorite things that I would be horrified for others to see. So a typical night sans hubby will usually be a quick trip to Whole Foods for nacho chips and quacamole, deviled eggs, and maybe a slice of cake with fresh berries or some brownie bites. Eaten in the order of brownie bites, eggs, nachos. Or maybe a salted caramel or two as a palette cleanser before the nachos. :)

      I am so jealous of you right now, I can’t stand it. (Is it wrong I want the Blackhawks to keep winning in my hockey-loving household, just so I can enjoy more “me” nights withought distraction???)

  6. Manhattanite :

    One thought is the integrity of the system. The defense attorney is making sure that the prosecutors are playing by all the rules and not cutting any corners. The thought is that if you cut corners with the true bad guys, then you can also cut corners on the wrongly accused as well.

  7. Saw in the morning comments that Kat had her second son a couple of days ago and wanted to say Congratulations!!! Also in case anyone stopped reading the morning comments and wanted to know that she had her baby, I thought I’d mention it. Hopefully there will be a post about it soon. Yay Kat!!

  8. What are you getting your dads/husbands for father’s day? I’m buying both for my dad and my husband, who is a first-time father.

    • Also, in case it helps anyone else, I am getting my h usband a profile of our baby off of Etsy. I think he’ll really like it, so I’m pumped about that.

    • Philanthropy Girl :

      I’m debating between a framed ultrasound photo and a book on being a dad that I’ve been eyeing for a while – baby won’t be here until September, but I still want to recognize the day somehow…

    • I bought my parents Paul McCartney tickets. Thanks to the high cost, they are also serving as a Mother’s Day presents. Two birds with one stone.

      • Senior Attorney :

        On behalf of Baby Boomer parents everywhere, let me just say that you are an awesome, awesome daughter! ;)

    • anon-oh-no :

      my husband mentioned wanting a pair of ferragamos that i know he will never buy himself, so i think that.

      but also, he does most of the gardening and likes to do it with the kids. i just saw an ad for this tool that you put in the soil and it hooks up to wi-fi and tells you on your iphone (or whatever) when your plants need water. so maybe that from the kids.

      along the same lines, for christmas, i got him this weather/temp thing from bass pro shop (someone here recommended it) that you put outside and it has a display inside with all sorts of weather info. its super cool. he loves it. the kids love it. and he loves looking at it every morning with our son.

    • I will call my Dad. He & my mom are currently living on the other side of the world and don’t want a lot of stuff, so FaceTime it will be.

      As for dh, my boys are older (8 to 14). They will each pick out a card for him, and then we’ll get him a small gift. I’m thinking the Art of Shaving shaving cream that he loves but refuses to buy himself because he thinks it’s too expensive (and he doesn’t like to spend money on himself).

      And as requested, for dinner, homemade ice cream with home made caramel sauce. Not sure about the rest of the meal yet, but isn’t dessert the most important part anyway?

  9. My Own Worst Enemy :

    Are there any other newer attorneys (or new anythings) that feel like the biggest hurdle in your career is your self esteem and confidence? I notice that when ever I get nervous (really nervous) I over think stuff and end up making careless mistakes that hurt my credibility.

    • Clementine :

      Yes. And it gets better.

      • My Own Worst Enemy :

        Thanks. Any tips on how to survive it? I feel like I am drowning lately.

        • Anne Shirley :

          Do something that makes you feel confident. Maybe you rock at painting your nails. Or feel powerful at a yoga class. Or like hiking. Try and build up your confidence outside the office and drag that feeling in with you.

        • I feel this way too, and for me, knowing that I’m not alone makes me feel better. That way I start thinking that I feel this way for reasons other than my own ineptitude. I’ve been focusing on trying to develop thicker skin these days so little things don’t bother me as much (or so I’m not as inclined to be really critical of every thing I do), and I think that has helped some.

        • Clementine :

          Here are things that have worked for me- Exercise has made an incredible difference in being able to de-stress, unwind, and also help me handle whatever situations come my way. I have learned that it needs to be a priority for me in order to keep my sanity and be a productive employee. Keep a file of your accomplishments. Right now mine has a glowing performance review, a project I’m really proud of, and a print out of an ‘attaboy’ email. Pull out and flip through as needed to remind yourself you’re an intelligent, capable human being. I am also a runner and keep a few running medals and my tough mudder headband in my cubicle. These things remind me that I’m strong and capable.

          Something else that’s been helpful is to try and analyze the situations I’m in from an outsider’s perspective. What can I do better? What would I have expected from a new attorney/zookeeper/ninja in this same point in their career? Remove the emotional aspect as much as possible and look at whether these are editing or overediting mistakes or is there a bigger picture issue related to information flow or communication that needs to be addressed.

          Also, what’s helped me more than anything is just being reminded that if I had come into a position where I wouldn’t grow in, I would hate it. Like I said before, it really does get better.

        • My Own Worst Enemy :

          You guys are all incredibly awesome. I really needed some advice like this today.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      If you think that it might be related to imposter syndrome, I recommend reading The Secret Thoughts of Successful Women by Valerie Young.

    • this was something that I struggle with. Honestly, doing really confident things in other areas of my life helped substantially– now I’ve completed 5 triathlons and 2 1/2 marathons. I love the training, keeps me in shape, and helps me remember that I am really strong, tough and amazing on the inside and the out.

    • When something you do turns out really well, make sure you let folks around the office know about it. This help mitigate some of the damage that happens when you make a mistake and lose some credibility. Be your own marketing manager. Ultimately, it might turn out that a partner/senior attorney decides that you are not the perfect person to do job X, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t market yourself as the perfect person to do job Y.

    • Yes for everyone, because law school does not teach you how to be a lawyer (at least not back in my day). Clerkships, mentors, practical guides, hands-on training — that’s what you need now. Copy other peoples’ stuff as much as you can until you get a feel for what you should be doing.

  10. Alas, not in my size… I am liking the straps, totally dig the trend for shoes that will not slip off because of them ;)

    I am trying to resist the urge to hit someone with a dead fish… I asked my manager and my team to pass on to my team leader a request to not to call me. Because common sense alone would not keep him from calling me when I’d spent most of the day in the office, then ran home to get in a nap before I go back overnight due to a scheduling mess-up. So of COURSE he calls me to ask something utterly inane and now I can’t sleep so I am plotting murder and complaining to the manager about this. I am not being unreasonable, am I?

    • Office hell :

      I hear you. I was just in the hell of listening to the person next door to me converse loudly on speaker (on loud) with someone next door to her (also on speaker), both with shut doorways but not making a dent in sound transmission. If I had had a dead fish, I would have thrown it somewhere and then have heard about it in something like quadruple stereo.

    • I hope this short video of fish slapping makes you feel better:

  11. Wedding shoe shopping help! I am looking for shoes that I can wear outdoors, but I want to wear something with a chunky heel rather than a wedge because I feel unstable in wedges. I also have bunions, so need something with wider straps. I found a really great pair (link in follow-up) but I would love something that’s a mix of brown and black rather than just being one color (already have brown wedges). Below 150 – bonus points if I can buy from Zappos as I have a gift card!


      • How about:

        • There are also these:

          • Ooh, not sure how you feel about suede in summer, but if you’re not opposed, I think these are really chic (though high!):

          • These are what I’m looking for – thanks AIMS!

  12. Misery and making time for a relationship :

    I’m interested in how other ladies here with extremely long hours fit a relationship into their life. Currently on my 5th iteration of the following cycle:

    1. Life is good. Work is manageable. Start dating a nice guy.
    2. Commence relationship with guy.
    3. Honeymoon period of up to 2 years.
    4. Work escalates.
    5. Months on end of total crazy at office: I am behind. I get 600+ emails a day. I do not have time for laundry, showering, gym, sleeping…or my guy.
    6. Guy eventually feels like he is not important. And frankly, I am too exhausted to care. No, I don’t want you to come over when I get home at 1AM for the 3rd night in a row. I want to go to sleep.
    7. Guy leaves. I’m over my inbox quota at work so I have bigger problems. After all, I’m a single girl with no safety net…I need to keep my job above all else.

    Comments and advice appreciated.

    • Anonymous :

      You gotta change up on number 6. For the right guy you would be saying “I am going to be home super late. Id love it if you were there when I got home though.” If you want a relationship you need to put in at least a little work. Find ways to see each other during those crazy times. Sending a quick email, meeting for lunch, etc.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      What worked for me was to start dating my fiance when I was crazy busy at work. I spent the first few months of our relationship leaving the office for an hour in the evening for a date near my office then going back to work. That hour meant that I’d be at work that much later, but I decided that it was worth it to me. It is hard to describe to someone how crazy your work schedule can get when times are good and it is something that they really just need experience. I think we benefited from dealing with it at the beginning and going into our relationship with our eyes wide open.

    • Yeah. Been there, done that. It stinks.

      I started a relationship just over a year ago and ultimately decided that to make the relationship work, my job would have to give. Before quitting to move to a more balanced firm, I set boundaries like “Wednesday night is date night. I will work until 10 pm every other night of the week but I will be gone by 6 pm on Wednesdays.”

      If quitting your job isn’t possible, can you foresee your busy stretches? Give him a heads up and explain the situation. Tell him what it is that is keeping you busy (while preserving confidentiality, of course).

      Still, make time. Even if it is him picking up dinner and eating it in a conference room with you. Ping him during the day. Just show that, even though you have no time, you are still thinking of him. Send him flowers or a cheesy gift that you had your secretary search for online. Schedule a “date” so he has something to look forward to. It is all these little things.

      Also, realize that some guys just can’t handle dating a woman with a high powered career. After a crazy month of billing 200+ hours, I had a serious (as in going to marry him serious) boyfriend accuse me of cheating on him! I realized a few weeks later that this was a sign that he just didn’t understand my career and wouldn’t be able to support me. Some guys are just like that. Use these periods to weed them out.

      Good luck. I know this cycle well. Take care of yourself first.

    • My solution has been to date a guy who also works a demanding job and thus gets it. And also gets it when I choose to spend what free time I have pursuing my sports and other interests.

  13. The thread for this morning’s pants topic is too long now but want to share that the ankle length, not petite, is the perfect length for me at 5’4″ wearing either flats or kitten heels (or Dansko clogs because, well, medical offices aren’t known for fashion). This is the Gap Perfect Fit pants. And regular sized ankle, not petite (not evven sure if they have petite ankle), because short doesn’t always mean petite in other proportions!!

  14. Lady Tetra :

    I bought a “jeans day” pass for tomorrow at work for a fund-raiser, and I’m stumped on what to wear. I’m in a BigLaw office in DC. Any ideas? I have several pairs of jeans, but none of them seem nice enough to wear to the office. Can I wear a sundress (appropriate, not strapless or anything)? Denim skirt and nice tee? Any ideas would be appreciated!

    • Anne Shirley :

      Wear jeans!! That’s the whole point. Pair them with cute shoes , and a blazer if you really feel too casual but the whole point is the wearing of jeans.

      • +1! Wear jeans proudly, you earned it! Just pick the one you think best. And if you feel weirdly casual, take it up a notch on your top half (fabric/structure/jewelry etc.)

    • Clementine :

      An interation of dark wash jeans + silk blouse or shell + cardigan or blazer + slightly less conservative than normal shoes and jewlery is my go-to.

      • Clementine :

        Man, I do really wish there was a function to edit your own previous posts and fix silly typos. iteration? is that what I wanted to say?

    • I love that your firm offered this at a fundraiser. It sounds like your office is pretty conservative so if none of your existing jeans are nice enough for work, I suggest wearing your denim skirt and pairing it with a shell and cardigan or blazer. If you keep it colorful, you’ll have more fun in it so you’ll feel like you got full value from your jeans day pass.

      Something colorful like this:
      or this:

  15. Somehow my suit pants or skirt always wear out before my jackets, so on jeans day I wear one of the orphan jackets, some dark wash or black jeans, and a more casual top, like a cotton poplin or cotton sweater knit.

  16. Hi there! Will try reposting too. Two attorneys our firm uses really went above and beyond for us this week on a rush transaction (giving up their weeks off between changing firms to get a rush/messy deal done for us). They’re BigLaw. I’d like to get them a token gift – what do you all recommend?

    • Beyond any sort of token gift, which may or may not be necessary, I would write a heartfelt thank you note expressing your gratitude, and if appropriate, write one to their supervising partner or whatever higher up.
      As for an actual gift, I am always a fan of a bottle of champagne, but that’s just what I like to get for pretty much all occasions.

      • AnonInfinity :

        Agree completely, especially about writing a note or email to the higher-ups (and copy or bcc the person you’re complimenting!). It’s so rare we get nice feedback like this that it really is the best gift. I save the handful of emails like this I’ve received and look at them when I’m feeling especially down.

  17. Sydney Bristow :

    Are we not getting a new post this morning? I need my fix!

    • Baconpancakes :

      Probably has something to do with Kat’s new baby! I hear she delivered, so mazel tov, Kat!

    • I'm Just Me :

      Me too. Especially because the Frugal Fridays are always my favorite.

    • Me too! Kat / Kate let’s get this Friday started!

    • Anon Annoyed :

      I find this really annoying. The rest of us all stepped up and either hired people (which Kat apparently has done) or found other ways to do work while on maternity leave. Since this is Kat’s full time job, this is a bit annoying to not be completing the duties.

      • Then I suppose you’ll have to stop paying to read this site. Oh wait.

        Honestly, unless this is a joke, it’s an overreaction. Who is “the rest of us”? It may be her full-time job, but you’re not paying her salary. I would also like to see a post this morning, but thissite doesn’t owe you anything.

      • anon annoyed. I hope you’re joking… from what I understand, Kat still directs the editorial. This is her full-time job, but forgive a woman for not prioritizing those duties in the day or two after birthing a human being, which I hear is pretty taxing (if indeed she has gone into labor recently).

        This is the sort of talk that is damaging to women in the work-life balance conversation. Yes, “lean in” to your career, but cut a woman some slack if she very well might be in a hospital. Be a human being about it.

      • It could also be a technical glitch or some other issue. Kat had her baby on Sunday, things happen, it’s annoying but that’s life for you.

        BTW, while I do agree it’s annoying, it is just a little funny that the general commentary on this site is often “I don’t read the posts, like the clothing choices, I just come for the comments” but no one wants to comment on an old thread. Just saying. This week has been cranky.

        • I completely agree AIMS. The old threads are still open. I’ll even begin a thread. Work appropriate?

          • In the agricultural industry, certainly.

          • If you’re general counsel to Ma and Pa Ingalls, Inc., maybe?

            AIMS, I think people pop by and assume they’ll come back and post when the new thread is up – they don’t want to post if there will be a new page soon. I like the idea to create some activity here so people see there’s something going on if they have questions or something to talk about :)

          • I think that if you’re in IT, tech, or lab research in the Pacific Northwest, these would be fine, and depending on how you styled them, would probably get you positive attention. Probably best on a Friday, and probably not if there are any meetings outside the department that day. But not looking “too corporate” is part of the social vetting process in those industries, and I’ve seen senior IT people wear overalls before. And tie dye shirts. Sometimes together.

            Outside those industries, I wouldn’t recommend it.

        • I'm an associate :

          What do you mean by old thread? I try not to post on the older ones (more than a day old) because I figure no one goes back to them.

      • As a business owner, Kat basically gets to set her own rules and requirements, right? In other words, if she wanted to take a one-year sabbatical with no notice, she could technically do so… but it might not be the best business decision for her. In this case, she’s apparently gambling that we won’t all desert her over one missed morning.

        I think that’s a reasonable gamble to make. Heavens, I have reason to believe that my manager wouldn’t be too angry if on one occasion, I missed half a day of work with no notice. I would need to explain the emergency, later, but when one’s been doing good work, there’s usually some margin for error.

        And while Kat may not have to be as “on the ball”, in all ways, as the rest of us, I have a sneaking suspicion that the paycheck scales accordingly.

    • new post is up ladies!

  18. Clementine :

    I was going initially say if you’re a pregnant farmhand, then got swept up in a wave of wide-legged overall nostalgia. 6th-grade me rocked those over a tye-dyed t-shirt.

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