Frugal Friday’s Workwear Report: Cotton Knit Fit and Flare Dress

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

This dress is that rare unicorn with both sleeves and pockets. I also like the boatneck, and for those of you who don’t like exposed back zippers, the plus to this dress is that there’s no zipper at all — it’s a pullover style. It’s machine washable, as well. Like most eShakti options, this comes in a wide range of sizes (XS-6X, plus custom) and it can be modified with your choice of 10 necklines, 7 sleeve types, and 5 lengths. It’s a great look you can do a lot with. The dress was $54.95 and it’s now on sale for $46.95. Cotton Knit Fit and Flare Dress

Psst: We just updated the links on this post on bespoke dresses if you’re interested in more dresses that allow you to customize the measurements.

This post contains affiliate links and Corporette® may earn commissions for purchases made through links in this post. For more details see here. Thank you so much for your support! 

Seen a great piece you’d like to recommend? Please e-mail tps at corporette dot com.


  1. Anonymous :

    I have huge social anxiety. I want to apply for a new job but I always have trouble finding references.

    Can anyone relate?

    • Totally.

      I know that I should send an email/happy new year message to the folks I would like to be my future references, so they don’t think I’m dead or forget who I am,…. but even that seems overwhelming and intrusive.

      • I hope you don’t mean this yr — bc it’s the end of Feb??

        • Of course I mean this year.

          Thanks for your understanding.

          • A new years email in March – bc I assume you have to mull it over for a few more days. Don’t bother. I’d assume you weren’t interested and someone told you this is how you network so it was some kind of obligation to fulfill.

            May I ask what you do for a living if EMAIL overwhelms you?? How do you handle in person meetings?

          • Sloan Sabbith :

            11:29 Anon, chill. You’re being unnecessarily rude.

            9:41 Anon, I would probably not send a New Years message at this point, but it’s not intrusive to send an email checking in. If that makes you feel uncomfortable, find an article the person would be interesting and send that along for a conversation starter, as it were.

      • I should also get in the habit of a new year card or email. And I should probably start that now, because it’ll take me until the end of 2017 to actually send it.

    • YES. I always end up using weaker references because I’m more comfortable asking people that I’m very comfortable with, even if they are not the “best” fit for the position I’m considering. This was a huge problem for me in college and law school too – so hard to ask for letters of recommendation when I was too shy/anxious to get to know my professors. No advice, just sympathy!

      • References *should* be the people who can best speak to your abilities, which is almost always going to be people who know you better and work closer with you.

    • Same! Last month, I decided to email a few old contacts and tried the method of including a link to an article that we’d both find interesting given what we worked on together – no one replied. Not sure if that’s par for the course with busy people or if my email came across as fake even though I was genuinely interested in hearing how they’re doing….

      • I enjoy (some) networking and TBH I find the article thing fake unless I hear from you all the time. Why not be honest? Why not drop an email saying — hey — haven’t talked to you in so long. Hope things are going well. Saw your name mentioned in an article re xyz, so I’m sure that’s keeping you busy. As for me, I’m doing ABC right now. Let’s catch up when schedules allow – let me know if you’re up for coffee/drinks/lunch sometime.

        • +1 to this – I would be so much more likely to respond to a genuine attempt to connect with me, versus someone using an old networking trick they read about online.

      • If they are like me, they did not have time to read the article right then and felt bad about replying without having at least glanced at it.

        For that reason alone, I’d just email to check in rather than sending an article.

    • I have a friend with social anxiety who has been applying for jobs in a tough field. He never networked, never sent anything more than the briefest of thank-you emails for interviews, and did not schmooze in any way. He got rejected from four straight jobs, one of which would have been his dream job, and finally asked for feedback. He was told he “didn’t seem like he wanted the job.” This was a wake-up call to him and I hope it can encourage you to find strategies to overcome the anxiety. One thing that helps me is giving myself little rewards for doing things I don’t want to do (I’m an introvert and HATE networking/informational interviews/etc.), but if I do it, I’ll let myself have a luxurious dessert or take a long hot bath or something else that helps me wind down and view the experience in a positive light. This has really paid off for me and I was able to score a research position with a professor by networking aggressively.

    • Do it through linked in. It’s so clearly a professional network that there is nothing really social about it. Connect with the people you’d want references from, then send them a message through linked in asking if they’d be willing to serve as a reference for you.

      • Sorry but if someone who hadn’t been in touch with me for yrs dropped me a LinkedIn invite asking for a reference — I’d like say no or ignore them. You are asking for a favor and you can’t drop a personal email? I don’t get what social anxiety has to do with email. You write it in the privacy of your home and send it while hiding behind a screen. You aren’t asking them out on a dinner date??

        • Obviously you are not experienced with these type of issues. Why are you bothering to answer when your “questions” are inappropriate and you have no constructive advice?

          Your response is exactly why so many of us struggle with these issues, by just making us feel worse about ourselves.

          Thanks for that.

          • How can a question be inappropriate? Bc it disagrees with you and you just wanted people in agreement to respond? I am giving you constructive advice — if you want something from someone, drop them a personal email or [gasp] a phone call — not LinkedIn.

          • Anonymous :

            Your questions were…

            “You are asking for a favor and you can’t drop a personal email?”

            “You aren’t asking them out on a dinner date??”

            Did you really think these are appropriate questions for someone who has admitted they have social anxiety? How is this helpful, as they just scream…. you are dysfunctional loser.

        • Then, you don’t understand social anxiety. I would spend like an hour overthinking how that person would feel receiving the e-mail, the appropriate title, thanks vs. thank you vs. sincerely, would they have preferred a phone call, should I ask them how they are doing, what if they perceive that as fake, I hope they don’t find me weird, am I being fake, should I tell them how I am doing, asdfjalskd this is too hard.

          Social anxiety is a real problem lol

          • So spend the hour. YOU are the one asking for the favor. I’m just stating the truth – most people with any hint of networking sense in them will NOT be responsive to a networking request dropped by LinkedIn in. They WILL view that as fake and opportunistic.

          • I wouldn’t see it as opportunistic. If someone I worked with wanted a reference from me, unless I had a terrible opinion of them (which you’d know and not want to ask them), I would see it as a normal part of the course of business and say yes.

            You are not asking them to drive you to the airport, babysit your dog, or buy a gift for your mom. You’re asking for a reference. This is expected from professional contacts so try not to worry about their feelings…they expect to be asked. And the worst that will happen is that they’ll ignore you or say no, and even then I’d bet they’ll say something like, “We worked together a long time ago, is there anyone more recent that could do better than I could?” rather than, “OMG you are a horrible person, no.”

            (PS – I am trying to sound supportive and calming, but I’m not sure it is coming across that way! Really, don’t sweat it. I know, easier said than done!)

        • Obviously you are not experienced with these type of issues. Why are you bothering to answer when your “questions” are inappropriate and you have no constructive advice?

          Your response is exactly why so many of us struggle with these issues, by just making us feel worse about ourselves.

          Thanks for that.

        • S in Chicago :

          Really? This is exactly what LinkedIn is for. Folks’ addresses change over time and it’s not fair to expect everyone to keep up with everyone else’s contact updates. I’ve had people reach out and request I give recs this way (former reports as well as same-level colleagues) and I’ve done it myself. One of the folks who requested this way is someone I would have dinner with once a year or so and I didn’t think it was weird at all. In fact, I preferred it to a phone call because I had a record then with all the details about the position they were going for so I could tailor my response better. If we were talking by phone, I wouldn’t have caught half of that. (And frankly, would have probably spent more time focused on the personal catch up.) Time is of the essence with references–it’s totally normal to use LI where you can be most confident about having current contact info and an efficient way to relay what it is that you’ll be needing.

      • Calibrachoa :

        Yes, this. Linkedin is like the internet equivalent of nodding at someone at the water cooler and I love it.

    • Don’t listen to the meanies. It’s fine to do through LinkedIn. Especially since people move around a lot, people understand that you don’t always have an up to date email etc. There are probably some fields where people expect you to call them, but I think most people are perfectly fine responding to an inmail or email. Many people are flattered that you would think of them for a reference. google “request a reference email” and copy the templates you find. It’s very normal. Also, depending on your field, a lot of jobs don’t even really check references any more.

    • Yeah, but I woman up and just send them the damn emails after worrying about it for a few days or weeks.

  2. Wanderlust :

    Ohhh, this dress is perfection. POCKETS!

    • Yay! I so agree, and it’s on Fruegel Friday! This is a dress I can wear and I love Fruegel Friday’s but I slipped goeing into my apartement yesterday and now am staying home to rest. FOOEY.

      But I can work on my billeings today especially b/c we are getting to month end and the manageing partner wants these bills out on TUESDAY. Myrna is bringing over dinner tonite from the 2nd Avenue Deli, and we are watching SULLY, the movie about the airplane that landed in the HUDSON River. I can’t wait! Has anyone in the HIVE watched SULLY? I read some review’s and they sound great!

      To all in the HIVE–be careful when you walk on floor’s that are NOT carpeted. Pumps are slippery and you can fall on your tuchus if you are not careful. Have a great weekend to the ENTIRE HIVE!! YAY!!

    • Anonymous :

      Does anyone have experience with this brand? I love some of the dresses on the site but I’ve heard of them before.

      • Yes. I loved the look of their stuff and the ability to do custom meaurements so I ordered 3 dresses. The sizing was ALL over the place even though I ordered the same size for each.
        Also, this company is in India, so returns are basically impossible :(

        • I returned something to them (as you said, despite the custom sizing, the actual garment was bizarre – way too big in the torso and way too small in the sleeves). I got about 1/2 my money back. I assumed there was a haircut due to the customization.

          • I believe they’ve changed their policy on returning custom garments, so it may be worth another look. Not affiliated with them in any way, just LOVE eShakti!

            To the OP, I’m a huge fan–affordable, washable garments that almost always have sleeves and pockets. I’ve actually never done the custom measurements. It’s true that you can encounter some variability in sizing but the one time something didn’t fit me they replaced it for free. I love their retro styles.

      • Bio GradStudent :

        Yes, I got the Jasmine dress in red, custom size and style – I got elbow length sleeves and a slightly longer skirt (I wanted a dress to wear to fall/winter weddings and parties so I wanted to have my shoulders covered). The first dress I got was way to tight across the upper back/shoulders (I have broader shoulders but am less endowed in the chest so this wasn’t too surprising). I emailed customer service, they asked me to send pictures and remade the dress for free. I just sent back the original in the box it came in and I didn’t have to pay any extra for the additional shipping/dress. The second dress fit perfectly, and I really like it.

      • I have purchased some items, and I’ve been very happy with my purchases for the price point. I haven’t done the full customization to my measurements, but just being able to choose sleeves and length is amazing for me!

      • I was disappointed with the fit and quality of the items I ordered.

      • I’ve been ordering from them for a couple years (because pockets! custom length! sleeves!) and there has been a huge increase in both quality of fit and quality of sewing in the last 12 to 18 months. In addition, the return policy has been revised and it is much easier to return items, particularly for fit problems (which I haven’t had happen in at least a year). For the money, I’m really happy with everything I’ve received, and it you don’t need a custom size, their “overstock” items are even more affordable and have resulted in two perfect work dresses that were super inexpensive. Obviously if you’re expected Brooks Brothers, you’re going to be disappointed, but if you’re looking for a nice business casual dress or a simple basic, I’d absolutely recommend them.

    • Anonymous :

      I like the pockets and the style, but I don’t love how the boatneck seems too small/is higher in the back on the model. Just bought a similar Lauren dress on sale and I don’t think it does that at all.

    • I’ve bought some clothes from them, and it all has a sort of “home sewn” look/feel. Like maybe with a LOT of pressing and a perfect fit it could be fabulous, but it just… wasn’t. And the sizing was weird, skirts were HUGE, like it cost a fortune to just get one hemmed because there was so damned much fabric. Too bad, because the idea is so cool.

      • Yes. “Home sewn.” That’s what I was trying to think of. When I bought from them in 2015, I actually found that fit wasn’t bad, but the seams did not lie quite smooth and the waist was sometimes a smidge higher on one side than the other. Plus, the fabric for a couple of the tops was just cheap.

        That said, it’s good to hear that quality has improved. Their stuff was so CUTE I might try again!

  3. Colorist in DC/NoVa ? :

    Looking to get my hair colored soon! I have very dark South Asian hair and want to go for a bronde-ish look with some highlights (lowlights?) – similar to the color Olivia Palermo was sporting. Anyone have any good recs in DC/NoVa for a colorist that can do this?

    Also, any thoughts on whether someone with dark-ish hair now would be able to pull that off? Never had my hair colored before and I have a big event coming up in about a month…

    • Calibrachoa :

      I think that with the right stylist (alas, no recs, sorry) you wold look amazing :D (and in case it turns out to be a disaster, you already know you look good if it ends up being fixed with the age old solution of “just cover it with black” ;)

    • I have friends who like Blondie’s and Immortal Beloved for coloring. I have had good experiences with Leanne at the Bang Salon at Verizon Center, but only for highlights.

    • This article might be helpful or interesting to you?

    • Since you asked, I’m not a fan of that look because it will look so obviously colored. Honestly most people would kill to have jet black South Asian hair. It looks a bit tacky to me. Just one opinion, of course.

    • I think it would look good with the right stylist. I go to Kim at Immortal Beloved and LOVE her. I have brown-black hair and generally sport a bronde-ish look.

    • Bensonrabble :

      I think sounds gorgeous. Good luck!

  4. Looking for recommendations for an attorney in the Nashville area for post-divorce issues.

    Divorce is final (nearly two years); my son’s ex-wife has been making noises about money she thinks is owed to her but to my non-lawyer eyes, it doesn’t seem likely.

    Son needs legal advice, not mom advice. Thanks in advance!

    • Unless he was unhappy with the representation he received in the divorce, I would suggest he go back to the lawyer who did the divorce. They will already have some familiarity with the file so it may be a lower cost as less time to get up to speed.

      • Sadly he was boneheaded and didn’t participate or have representation. So there’s no one to go back to–hence me hoping someone here might have a recommendation.

  5. Anonymous :

    Thanks for the clearer affiliate link disclosure Kat! I was one of the ones who complained recently and I really appreciate that you’re reading the comments and promptly incorporating our feedback.

    • +1. I was too and I really appreciate the prompt response!

    • Agreed!

    • S in Chicago :


    • I didn’t particularly care one way or another but I also appreciate Kat’s response to the feedback. Thanks!!

      • FrankieCat :

        +1 I assume that there are affiliate links (how else to help pay for this forum, technology, servers etc) and really am happy to support Kat.

      • Totally agree – I wasn’t bothered by the old disclosure, but I love that Kat took the feedback and made a positive change based on it.

    • Sorry if I’m cynical, but people have been asking about clearer information for a long time — years? I suspect that Kat, given her prior career, is perhaps more sensitive to the FTC requirements for blog disclosures than many bloggers are, rumors/plans for more stringent enforcement, and perhaps wary of fines for lack of transparency.

  6. Two Important Things :

    My relationships and career are two of the most important things to me. Of course I’ve learned a lot through trial by fire but I’ve received some great advice along the way. What are the best dating and career advice youve ever received? I’ll start.

    1) People cant read your mind, you have to tell them what you want even if it might not work out/the earlier you speak up the faster you’ll figure out if their right for you instead of making assumptions.
    2) Go on informational interviews: I got my first job out of college from an informational interview – a job magically opened up in her office 2 weeks after our talk! plus I learned a lot about from her about the industry I work in which has helped me to this day

    • Don’t be afraid to ask for what you deserve – but take the time to spell out your argument for why you deserve it before you ask.

      Own your mistakes and have a plan for how to avoid them in the future when you ‘fess up.

    • PrettyPrimadonna :

      This applies to both:

      Ask for what you want, and never feel guilty (or “greedy” or some other such nonsense) about wanting what you want.

    • 1) Manage expectations and communicate expectations.

      2) Learn how to play all positions.

      • Renting near Berkeley :

        Regarding 1) Be aware what is within your power and what isn’t. Communicating well and rationally is your choice, but you can’t force other people to act like that.

    • Anonattorney :

      1) You can’t be solid in a relationship with someone else until you’re happy and confident being alone.

      2) Cultivate your network all the time – even when you’re happy and secure in your current job. That way you find out about new opportunities before you have to go through the stress of losing or leaving your current job with no safety net. Plus, if you’re a lawyer, it allows you to build a book of business so that you can develop independence.

    • +1,000,000 to the first one. It’s better to risk not hearing what you want early and having the relationship end than try to hold something together by hiding your feelings.

  7. I just cut about 4 inches off of my hair and it’s now roughly shoulder length. I love the length but my hair is “flipping out” (the ends of it are turning out and up). I straightened it today and that doesn’t seem to be helping much. Is there any way to get it to stop doing this? Hair is normally reasonably think (thin strands but lots of them) and wavy.

    • Babyweight :

      Sounds like my hair. The ends are going to naturally flip out if they are turning against your shoulders all day, since there isn’t any weight to pull them down. I have to turn the ends under with a roller brush when I blow dry.

    • I have the same issue and no real solution – sorry! The only thing I have found that consistently fixes it for a few days is a professional blowout. Sometimes I can get it cooperate myself with a round brush and a hair dryer. Once it gets past my shoulders, the issue resolves itself.

    • marketingchic :

      Mine does this too. I’ve had the best luck with flat-ironing the ends. If I turn it under with a round brush it’s actually worse – somewhere between Rachel from Friends and Gidget.

    • I just got the same haircut. My solution is hot rollers–even my shortest bits of hair will roll over the barrel of the curler and flip under. It isn’t as perfect as the blow out I got at the salon, but it’s workable.

    • 1) Make sure you are using a high-quality flat iron
      2) When you flat iron, angle the iron slightly inwards (towards your face) at the the bottom, like you are trying to bend your hair inward
      3) Use an anti-humidity spray

    • I got a similar haircut lately and the stylist specifically warned me that this would happen and said the best fix was to go up about 1/2 inch to 1 inch shorter so that there is the tiniest bit of space above the shoulder. So that’s what I did and I really like it! I will probably have to get trims more often but I don’t have any flip problem at the ends. I have copious but very fine straight hair.

    • Marshmallow :

      Yeah, same haircut and same problem here. I have to turn the ends inward with a small round brush or a flat iron.

      I’ve also had moderate success on days I don’t want to blow-dry by working some B&B “Don’t Blow It” all through my hair, and then brushing the ends inward. Like you’re using a round brush but without the blow dryer. Depending on how compliant your hair is, the styling cream can help it dry in that position.

    • Mine did this when my stylist would cut long layers into my hair. The idea was to create movement but all it did was give me a flip. A more blunt cut might prevent the flip in the future. It worked for me, although one side always sort of flips out, so one side is under, one is out – both sides pointing in the same direction if you can picture it. Less 2003 HGTV (I call those flippy haircuts the Trading Spaces cut) though and more natural looking.

      • Anonymous :

        This happens to me, too. I got some hair paste/gum, and sort of rubbed it on the ends of my hair so it looked a little more purposefully piecey. If I have more time, I also use larger rollers to get a blow out-ish look without the work. Then I just wait for it to grow a few weeks and settle down. Also, I now try to resist the urge to get shoulder length hair, since I just don’t have the patience for maintenance.

  8. Renting near Berkeley :

    Looking for recommendations for finding a place to rent near Berkeley, CA. Just got the news that I’ll get a job at the Berkeley National Lab and am beginning to plan my (+SO) overseas move. We’ll be looking for an affordable 1 bedroom, hopefully near some public transport so that we’ll get by with only one car.
    It looks like Richmond and Oakland are near enough to commute, but coming from a LCOL, the rents there are still painfully high.
    Are there other neighborhoods that I should look at?
    Good websites for finding appartments in the area?

    • FB Group Bay Area Rooms and Apartments has some gems. Craigslist. Rents in the Bay Area are nuts. Best of luck!

    • What is affordable to you?

      You will have to make a lot of sacrifices to live in the Bay Area, but think of the beautiful outdoors as your own backyard……

      • Renting near Berkeley :

        First time I looked (trough apartment-listing websites that google gave me), I looked at several 1br places all for 1.5k or higher. Some of them were tiny shoe boxes.
        So I was wondering – is that simply the price to pay to live in the Bay Area or have I just not looked in the right places yet…

        • Yeah that’s a good price. I’m surprised you are seeing that low tbh.

          • anon in SV :

            I’d wonder about the safety of the neighborhood and the condition of the apartment at a price that low. That’s really low.

        • That sounds cheap! It’s really expensive here. I’m less up on east bay rents but SF is around 3k starting for your own place (studio). Oakland is nice, but get intel in neighborhoods, Emeryville is also close and cheaper, avoid Richmond – not the safest of areas.

          • Oh also maybe look at Walnut Creek, like Emeryville, it’s an area with a lot of apartments (v single family homes) and I think it has the advantage of being on a BART line. Personally, I think it’s harder to get around the East Bay without a car but that have changed with zip car and the like. SF’s public transit leaves a lot to be desired, but it’s a smaller area and you can get around on it more easily than in the East Bay.

          • prof mama :

            Richmond Annex or Point Richmond might work, though. El Cerrito is truly great -if boring – south of Richmond, north of Berkeley. I lived there for 5 years during grad school. West Berkeley might be good, too. Cheaper, but not far from BART.

            I agree with what everyone else has said: $1.5K is shocking cheap for a 1 berm.

            Take a look at the BART lines, and maybe live farther out on the Pittsburg/ Bay Point line – Pleasant Hill? Walnut Creek?

        • Agreed with all above. $1.5 for a 1br (even small) is a good price in the Bay Area… which is what scared me away, even coming from another HCOL area.

    • I know a few people who work at LBL and the closest you can get commuting-wise is Berkeley. It’s very convenient to take the shuttle to the lab (it makes several stops downtown) and if you can swing that, it would make commuting in Bay Area nightmare traffic avoidable. I recommend avoiding South Berkeley; it’s too undergrad-heavy and the petty crime is higher. Depending on your budget, check out North Berkeley (streets near the BART stop may have more affordable apartments than Gourmet Ghetto proper) and Oakland (neighborhoods bordering Berkeley). Richmond might have more affordable options, but it’s farther away and has more issues (pollution, crime, not great schools). I live in North Berkeley and have found that it works for my lifestyle (my husband and I have one car, but we don’t need it for commuting).

      You can also consider Orinda, Lafayette, or other places over the hill and take BART in to the shuttle, but you’ll have to make a transfer. Whatever you do, do NOT live in San Francisco or the other side of the Bay! The traffic has been so horrendous lately that you will spend your entire life commuting. Check out Craigslist, Premium Properties, North Berkeley Properties, and Padmapper.

      • This is good advice. LBL is not BART-accessible, though the shuttle runs decently often. Depending on your job, though, you may want the ability to occasionally drive up there on weekends or after-hours. I’ve always been a guest when going there, so they have had visitor parking for me. I don’t know what the staff parking situation is like.

        In general, I think your best bet would be to be on their shuttle route so you don’t have to transfer…but the shuttle stops at Downton Berkeley station and maybe some others, so BART to shuttle is doable. Where will your SO be working?

        Beyond that, LBL should be able to put you in touch with some folks at the lab who can give you advice/suggestions on where to live. They are pretty nice there, and generally the DOE labs like to take care of their own. Congrats your new job!!

      • Anonymous :

        North Berkeley may give OP even more sticker shock– i’m paying ~$3k for a 2bd/1 ba a few blocks from North Berkeley Bart, and that is a stellar price. Love the neighborhood but others may not be willing to pay for that.

    • Depending on how long you want to commute, you can get a bit cheaper by going further east or further south. On the direct BART line through downtown Berkeley you can live as far south as Fremont. In between there are San Leandro, Hayward, and Newark/Union City.

      To the east, you’d be transferring BART stations but those transfers are usually timed (no waiting for the train) you could live as Far East as Concord/Pittsburgh.

      If you don’t want a long commute I recommend getting a room in a shared house in Berkeley. I live in Berkeley and there are many situations like this.

      • Renting near Berkeley :

        Thanks all, this is very useful. Where I currently live, public transport is a dream. Living around Berkeley, is it at all realistic to not plan owning a car, as long as our commutes work via public transport? I assume there are lots of uber/carsharing options as it’s an urban area.

        • I’m anon at 9:53 with one car. I have found that having a car has made a BIG difference in my quality of life. I came from a city where I got by on public transit, Zipcar, and Uber, but here, there are so many opportunities in the great outdoors that are not accessible by public transit. Some places, like Tilden Park, technically have a bus going to them, but it takes 10x as long and it deters me from going. If I have an hour to go on a hike, I’m not going to spend 45 minutes of that on the bus when I could drive myself there and back in 10 minutes. If you’re not outdoorsy, though, you can probably get by without a car; I did it for my first few months in Berkeley, but ultimately decided to get the car and have no regrets at all. I’ve already had a bunch of fun weekend trips in the short time I’ve owned it.

        • anon in SV :

          Yep, totally fine. Lots of public transportation options, carsharing, Lyft (not Uber!), and Berkeley is bike friendly with mostly year-round bike friendly weather.

  9. Question on entering US :

    My family and I will be in the States for a week or so in summer to visit friends. We have tourist visas and though we are not from a country on the banned list, we are not white and our names are obviously going to mark us as South Asian / Indian though not Muslim. Given the recent shooting of an Indian man in Kansas, I’m really worried about (1) being detained at the airport (2) likely racial abuse. Luckily we will be in a deep Blue state…..

    Any advice?

    • Anonymous :

      You’ll likely be fine. So far detentions at the airport have not been targeting tourists. It’s a very large country/ one violent incident doesn’t mean you need to wear bullet proof vests. Just keep an eye on the airport situation in the news when your trip is approaching.

    • You’ll be fine. No advice necessary. Have a wonderful time with your family and enjoy yourself.

    • Are you going to be visiting a large city? If so, I think it’s unlikely (not impossible, just unlikely) you would face racial abuse/harassment. If you’re going to be visiting a more rural area (not like a national park – like a small town in the middle of the country), you are more likely to get some strange looks and rude comments, but you’re still not likely to be a victim of violence.

      • Also remember that thousands of tourists, many of those South Asian, visit the US every day, and I have not yet heard reports of any being routinely detained or victims of violence.

    • Anonymous :

      The recent shooting is tragic, but I don’t really think racial violence has significantly increased. Sadly, the US has a lot of gun violence and shootings are relatively common here and always have been. I do think some people now feel more comfortable shouting racial slurs where they previously might have just given someone a weird look, but there’s a big gap between shouting a slur and committing violence, and you’re unlikely to encounter even the former in a large city in a blue state.

    • Also remember that once you clear customs, you are virtually indistinguishable from a US citizen. We have lots of citizens of South Asian descent (I am one), and plenty still who are non-native English speakers or for whom it’s otherwise extremely obvious they weren’t born here, like the rest of my family. My family currently lives in a few different small towns in Texas, so deep red crazy country, and they’ve never had a problem. These unfortunate things do occur, but by and large the US is an extremely warm and welcoming place. Even now.

      • Exactly. If I saw someone who looked South Asian I would not think, “Oh I wonder where this person is from?” — Americans legitimately just don’t look all one way.

        I hope you have a lovely time, and get to see some of what is really wonderful here!

    • Just want to say that you are welcome here.

      Like others have said, once you have cleared customs, I’m sure you will be fine. Friends of mine that hold non-US passports tell me they make a point to speak English among themselves in the customs line and make a point to be polite and nice to the customs agent. Depending on where they are, they will also speak English among themselves, so as not to seem more ‘other.’ My family holds US passports but are immigrants and have no issue speaking whatever, but we live in a big blue city. If we lived elsewhere, we might not feel so comfortable switching in and out of English.

      • New Tampanian :

        +1 I am so sorry that we are at a point where this is even a question.

        You are VERY welcome here.

    • Alanna of Trebond :

      I am Indian American, and I would say that if you hear any comments at all, do NOT engage and just run away if you can, in light of the recent incident. It is not worth it to be killed. If you live in a deep Blue (or even a light Blue state or a big Blue city, you should be fine). But I have heard comments everywhere; although I have never faced racially-motivated violence.

      At customs, do NOT make jokes. My father (and I think other Indian men) are prone to making jokes about these kinds of situations. Do NOT risk it.

  10. Anonymous :

    Why are the necklines on dresses so high these days? I’ve been looking for a similar dress but the high neckline is either very unflattering and/or I feel like I’m being strangled.

  11. (Former) Clueless Summer :

    I just started at a new firm (woo!) and they have casual Friday including jeans which was something we were never allowed to wear at my old firm (Fridays were like suits no tie level dresscode). I haven’t seen the whole firm but my floor in particular seems pretty casual – there are some jeans and plain ts floating around out there today. Today I’m wearing skinnies, ankle boots, a black blouse and a flowy trendy blazer but I think I could push the envelope a little more. Any outfit suggestions for this kind of thing? I put on skinnies and a black swing sweater but took it off this morning cuz it felt weird. I might go back to that outfit idea though. (No trouser jeans suggestions though guys, it’s just not a thing anymore.) My nice work blouses look weird with jeans, imo. Or maybe that’s just me.

    • Anonymous :

      My office is super casual (we have no official dress code and people sometimes wear jeans not on Fridays) but my jeans uniform is still skinnies, a shell and a blazer and either ballet flats, boots or pumps depending on weather. I just really like the jeans and blazer look and think it looks polished but not overdressed. I mean if you want to wear a t-shirt it sounds like you can, but I also think your outfit sounds great.

      • marketingchic :

        Where is everyone getting their blazers? I need something new – and am having a hard time finding anything that is not black and doesn’t look like half of a suit.

        • I get a few a JCrew but I’d love for Kat to do a feature on casual Friday blazers that don’t look like half of a suit.

          • +a million! My coworkers are usually in shirtsleeves, so I’m looking for good jardigans (leaning towards cardigan).

        • I get my non-suiting blazers from F21 and H&M usually. They aren’t pricey, but they are often pretty cute and I find myself getting lots of use out of them.

          • Is it entirely absurd to buy F21 and H&M blazers and get them tailored? I can’t fit my shoulders into anything from H&M these days, but going up two sizes is a no-go on my small chest.

          • Not to me it isn’t. If you can get a blazer for $40 and then spend another $20 tailoring it, it’s still cheaper than buying a $150 blazer!

          • Calibrachoa :

            I just ordered a casual blazer from ThinkGeek, of all places XD It’s a subtly Star Trek one, so the geeks will know :D

        • I like Zara, but have to go to the brick and mortar store. The website is ridiculous.

        • Marshmallow :

          Today I am wearing a red collarless blazer from LOFT that I got for around $35 on sale. It’s not ponte, but it is quite soft. The button is tortoiseshell and it doesn’t give off that “half a suit” look at all. They tend to have a lot of cute, semi-casual blazers that would look great with jeans.

        • H&M has tons of $35 blazers that don’t look like suit pieces.

        • Consignment/used, tbh. Not sure why I can’t find them in stores but there are some great blazers on ebay and consignment sites.

        • LibrarianbyDay :

          I got a great cropped moto style blazer at Nordstrom last week. Definitely on the casual side but it’s a great fit for my academic workplace

        • I’ve just bought the Boden Emilia Ponte blazer and I really like it – it fits me beautifully (and I have broad shoulders and long arms) but isn’t too formal looking. It isn’t cheap but I’m hoping it will be more cost effective than my Zara ponte blazers which were fine for a while but don’t hold up at all well. I’ll probably buy another Emilia when there’s a good discount available.

          I have another ponte blazer from Uniqlo which was I think around $35 but I don’t love the fabric – I bought the grey marl which is OK but the black and navy looked weirdly shiny.

          Finally I also have the Jigsaw ‘Chunky Ottoman Cardigan’ which is quite structured and more jacket-like, and I really love it – it’s very cozy but makes me feel pulled together.

    • Anonymous :

      My workplace is the same. Almost all the women wear dark skinny jeans. I usually rotate a dark blue skinny pair, a black skinny pair and a wide leg dark blue pair for variety. We’re not full suits during the week so I’ll usually just do a blouse or ‘nicer’ sweater with the jeans and same work shoes as I’d wear M-Th. I’ll usually wear a non-suiting blazer if I have higher level client meetings (in-house so clients in jeans as well on Fridays).

      • Relieved to hear so many people are still wearing dark skinny jeans. I refuse to wear the high-waisted, light-wash flares I keep seeing in magazines; BTDT in my younger days. On Fridays I wear very much what’s been described here (jeans, shell, blazer, flats) and have no desire to change.

    • Also, if you can find a sleek jean skirt (they exist!), highly recommend for summer Fridays!

      • That was my jam this past summer. It was from Nordstrom. Knee length dark denim, slim cut without a lot of detailing.

      • I have one from Express from 200…4? maybe and I swear it still looks stylish. It’s dark, stretchy slim cut denim.

    • My standard casual Friday outfit is similar to what I might wear going to lunch on the weekend:

      – skinny jeans (dark wash/light wash/black/white but no rips or whiskering)
      – a “weekend” blouses (longer/trendier cut or more casual fabric than I would otherwise wear to work)
      – non-suiting blazer/leather jacket/nice boyfriend cardigan
      – flats/ankle boots/riding boots

    • Shopaholic :

      I wear skinny jeans to work on Friday as well, but I don’t usually wear just t-shirts. (Although to be fair, I rarely wear just t-shirts on my off-time either). I’ve stopped wearing blazers on Fridays because I just want to be comfy but I’ll wear sweaters, or cardigans, or a more lighter leather jacket that can replace a blazer in weight.

      Also sometimes I’ll wear a more casual dress and tights instead of jeans.

    • I’m wearing dark jeans in a skinny boot cut, a loose floral print top with a black background, a black cardigan, and Ipanema Diamond sandals. This is generally how I dress for casual Friday. Probably, the sandals are inappropriately beachy. IDNGAF.

    • Calibrachoa :

      More casual skirts, maybe? Floofier or brighter than you’d normally wear, maybe in different materials like denim or corduroy?

  12. Honeymooners :

    Posted a few weeks ago about whether to go on a once-in-a-lifetime honeymoon trip this summer despite my fiance’s unemployment. Thanks for all of the encouraging thoughts! After a lot of thinking and budgeting, we are going to Indonesia! Bali and Borneo, for 17 days. We had money saved and this is the kind of trip we can’t see ourselves ever having the opportunity for again.

    A few days after booking the trip, FH got a temporary contract job that wraps up a few weeks before the wedding. So, it looks like everything is working out!

    There is Zika in Indonesia, but it’s my understanding that the virus has been there for a long time and is less associated with birth defects than the “new” strains in S America. Is that totally off base? I think waiting 6 months until TTC is the plan anyway, but it’s tempting to be a little less vigilant with birth control. But, play it safe?

    • Enjoy! I don’t know when you’re going but please avoid Indonesia after august as the smoke and haze from forest fires each year are terrible. Please Google this.

    • FWIW, after 10+ years on BC, it took me longer than six months to even get a cycle back after dropping the BC. And if you’re planning to TTC in the near future, it might make sense to drop BC after the wedding and look into some of the NFP options out there, as they will help you get in tune with your cycle again.

      • On the other hand, a friend of mine was like “ugh quitting BC has made me so weirdly emotional and I haven’t even got a period yet!” — guess the punchline. She was like 8 weeks pregnant before she knew.

      • On the flip side, after 10+ years on BC, my cycle came back right away and I was pregnant 3 months later. You just never know!

    • Never too many shoes... :

      Am I misremembering or are you not also starting a BigLaw job after you come back? Because if that is the case, why would you TTC so soon?

    • Anon for this :

      I’m not a doctor but I am TTC. My doc wasn’t concerned about Singapore that has had Zika (I’m assuming the same type as Indonesia) and he is very overly cautious. He said no Florida!

    • Anonymous :

      Late to this but I’m Australian and Bali is like our Mexico – many people go there as it’s cheaper than beach holidays in our own country (I laugh at the idea of Bali being once-in-a-lifetime as for many people it’s once-a-year, but considered my own trip to Mexico to be so). I haven’t heard any Zika concerns, and if there were it would be a big deal here. Enjoy, Bali is truly awesome (make sure you know what type of holiday you want and work out which area is for you) and Borneo is on my bucket list!

  13. What do you put on a self-evaluation for interpersonal effectiveness? I’m a nice person that’s easy to get along with and I always help my colleagues out when they ask. Can I just say that? Or is there a more professional ways of phrasing it?

    • housecounsel :

      I think I’d add something about an ability to tailor your message to the recipient. You’re sensitive to how others receive information and you’re able to adapt your tone, level of directness, etc. to the person with whom you are communicating.

  14. the thread about references above prompts me to ask about something I have been feeling guilty about.

    An administrative assistant I worked with at one time used me as a reference without asking me first. I got several calls from the internal recruiter and I didn’t return them.

    The reason I didn’t return the calls was that I can’t honestly recommend her. She is a pleasant enough person but she was chronically late or a no-show. I recall she used up her entire PTO block within her first 4 months of working for my company (no she did not have a health condition), she couldn’t get along with other admins, and she played favorites among the people she was assigned to support. If she liked you she’d do your stuff. If the didn’t like you, she’d be too busy.

    I suppose she chose me for a reference because she liked me. I do like her. I would get a coffee with her if we were in the same city (though I’d be 50/50 on whether she’d actually show up).

    What should I have done? Lied and given her a positive reference?

    • No, definitely not. Otherwise there’s no point in having references, right? Although I’ll admit I’m a bit of a wuss on secretarial reviews. Mine is the worst of the secretaries in the group (I know because my life is so much easier when someone is subbing for her). I didn’t give her glowing reviews, but I didn’t slam her either, because I was a little afraid of what would happen if she realized it was me…

    • Return the call. Focus on what she did that was positive. Help people out and make the world a better place. You might need a similar favor at some point in your career. These are things that you should not be sweating and the fact that you are sweating it is an indicator that you should return the call.

      • I don’t think that giving a good reference for someone that you do not think was a good employee makes the world a better place. I’ve had someone lie to me about an associate before (“oh, she’s GREAT, we just don’t have enough work in our group because we’re slow”) and it was really, really not fun to be me firing that person 6 months after hiring her. What also wasn’t fun? The conversation I had with that reference when I encountered him at an industry event and he admitted that she’d had problems but he just felt too badly to be honest in the reference conversation.

        • Right. It helps the assistant out, which is nice, but it does so at the expense of the future employer and (more importantly for you) your own reputation.

        • +1 this. Someone did this to my sister because they wanted to get rid of a problem employee (internal transfer) and my sister had to call the police on the woman as well as firing her.

    • Do her a favor by reaching out and letting her know why you can’t offer her a good professional reference. It might hurt her feelings, but it would be a good life lesson.

      • Are you sure she used you as a reference, or if the recruiter, being internal, picked someone they knew she had worked with whom she had not listed?

        • No she listed me. The internal recruiter was for another company. Neither of us currently works for the company where we met

  15. Dieting/Nutrition Q :

    Seeking tips. I am about 30 lbs overweight – gained during a rough year. I’m typically a 4/6, currently a 10 – not size obsessed, just can’t fit into any of my lovely clothes! I’m back at the gym after sporadic attendance for a year, trying to moderate consumption around 1,500 cals. But I am really struggling – my endurance is still fine (I run a 5k 3x/wk and do basic strength training w free weights) but am seeing no change and I am basically starving every other day and am finding it hard to not make bad food decisions when I crash around 5pm. I’m sure people have been in this situation before – any tips?

    • Weight Watchers. If I don’t track what I eat I wind up under eating for a few days then going way overboard. Having a set number of points a day plus extra points to use whenever really helps me. Also working out for me has a negligible influence on weight loss.

      • +1 I’m down 11 lbs in 5 weeks on WW. It’s awesome and it works. I wish it wasn’t so stigmatized as an old lady program, but I lost 50 on it at age 27, and now at 33 I’m going for round two.

      • OK I am seeing all the WW suggestions – what’s the benefit of WW exactly? I already track my food/calorie intake – having a macro number seems like just an extra step?

        • I posted below about WW – for me the benefit is the tracking points system is that I don’t have to track calories in the same way. Foods that are high in protein but low in sugar so you eat in a healthier way even for the same number of calories. Fruits and vegetables are low or no points (unless blended in a smoothie).

          I have three kids and I don’t have time to track every calorie. I like that I can eat everything, it’s just about portion control and balance. I’ve inputted a lot of the recipes I use for supper with the kids and then just decide how much lasagna to eat based on what I had for lunch that day or if I’m going out to lunch the next. I’m eating more healthy, homemade meals for sure. Tracking just makes me more aware of what I put in my body and the emphasis on being conscious of portion sizes (1 cup of pasta instead of 2, 5 oz of wine instead of 8) – feels sustainable because I’m not giving up entire food groups.

          • Adding that I just re-read your comment about the ‘extra step’ – with WW it’s about the number of ‘points’ in a day not the number of calories because calories aren’t a great guide. 100 calories of chocolate and 100 calories of greek yoghurt will have a totally different impact and different points value.

            I do find that WW doesn’t deal well with healthy fats so I don’t count points for olive oil when I use plain olive oil and balsamic vinegar as salad dressing.

        • For me, it’s knowing how much to eat a day and how much flexibility I have. I just find it more structured and easier than doing it on my own.

        • It sounds like you really just need to change it (everything) up and try something new. Maybe you’re tracking 1,500 of calories but what’s the composition of the calories? Are you eating the same food week after week? I’m a giant WW advocate, but WW aside, maybe just doing something totally different to shock the system for a while will be the right approach. And if that’s the case, maybe it’s WW or maybe it’s something else.

          Now for the WW plug – my mindset is 100% shifted since joining. I’m in control of myself and my thinking (and therefore my binging). There are tremendous resources available and a great online community (Connect). Being one of a group of people struggling the same way and with the same end goal has helped me really take control. 4-5 years ago I lost about 50 lbs in about 7 months. I wasn’t obese, but was tired of being overweight and feeling badly (12/14 size). I did that with the online program. I gained some back for a variety of reasons, but still had more to lose, too. I’m TTC and struggling badly so I rejoined about 12 months ago online. I started/quit/started/quit for a year, and finally decided to bite the bullet and go to meetings. I was so embarrassed to go initially, but I’m so very glad I did and the progress, particularly mental progress, is incredible.

          • Yay! I posted below about WW and I found the same thing with the mental change. i use food to fuel my body, don’t feel restricted and don’t use it to cope with emotions anymore. Actually doing the activities at the meetings like brainstorming non-food ways to deal with stressors was hugely helpful. I pulled out that list when we had layoffs at work this week (not me but some friends) and managed to avoid fast food on the way home.

      • Baconpancakes :

        For all the WW proselytes, it seems like once you go off WW you gain the weight back. Is this the kind of thing where you have to be a member for the rest of your life or gain it back?

        • This is my first time doing it but if you maintain your goal weight you get free lifetime membership as long as you weigh in at regular intervals (monthly I think) and maintain your goal weight. A big part of the journey for me has been accepting that if I want to maintain my weight, I just cannot go back to indulging like I used to. When I was 16 I could eat whatever I wanted and stay a size 2. I coasted on that through my twenties creeping up to a 4/6 that I was achieving with lots of exercise and overindulging, post – babies, I’ve had to relearn how to eat for one (done pregnancy/nursing) and how much exercise was realistic with 3 kids. I wasn’t looking for a quick fix ‘Whole 30’ style – I was looking to learn what I needed to do maintain my weight/fitness long term in a realistic way (no more pilates class 3 times a week like before 3 kids).

          I needed a ‘program’ I could do around my kids (I NEVER mention weight loss/ losing weight around them) and I needed help moving away from food at a tool for dealing with emotions – Myfitnesspal didn’t have that aspect. Things like Whole30 don’t model the kind of restrictive eating that I’m comfortable demonstrating for my kids (no grains, no dairy), If my WW meeting wasn’t great (they vary in quality), or not right location (right in my building), I might have looked at other programs. WW feels sustainable because it uses real food I cook myself, focus on using food for fuel not to deal with emotions, and encourages physical activity (snowshoeing with the kids vs. hours at the gym by myself).

          • Adding that my mom and sister did WW in the 1990s – I NEVER thought it would be for me.

        • I think people gain (myself included) when they go off of it because you can’t “go off” of WW – you can’t expect to be healthy, lose weight, and then go back to your old ways and keep the weight of. You can’t go off portion control, making the right choices, exercising and drinking water. WW maintenance, as I understand it as I’m not quite there yet, is really about maintaining the lifestyle.

          I like WW over the Whole 30 (which I did with success, but the weight came back) or other elimination-based diets because not eating pasta isn’t gonna work long term. I have to have rice at times. I’m a chocoholic. It’s just a reality of me and my life, and the life I want. WW is good for me because I don’t eliminate any foods, I just make choices about the foods I eat.

    • I”m similar. Usually a 4/6 and stuck at 10 post baby. I’ve been doing Weight Watchers and find it really works for me. One thing I do modify from the WW program is that I don’t do any artificial sweeteners (aspartame, sucralose etc) as I find that forces me to use ‘real foods’. I don’t have the patience to count calories so I find the electronic points thing great. Other people say they find MyFitnessPal works just as well for them. I also attend a WW meeting because there’s a meeting in my office building that I find great and I need the external accountability – if you don’t then online only or myFitnessPal might work for you.

      • Adding that one way to get the most benefit is to add all your commonly used recipes to the tracker right away – that way when life is busy you can just click on them to add the points. Relearning portion control post baby was super important to getting back on track – I use measuring cups to scoop rice/pasta etc.

        • housecounsel :

          I agree that WW and FitnessPal and other forms of tracking work well for some people. Tracking makes me psycho and disorder-y, though. I guess it makes me think too much about food. What works for me is cutting out added sugar. I can still eat when I am hungry – just not most refined and processed stuff. I find that cutting out sugar makes my appetite much more manageable. If your poison is something other than sugar, this might not work for you.

    • Tracking calorie intake on MFP has made a difference so far this year and the scale has slowly been moving down. I stopped tracking for a few days and I can tell a difference and not in a good way. Another benefit of tracking is that you can see patterns in what you are eating and see it certain foods make you hungrier. there’s a small group of ladies on here that have a group on MFP communities- search for ladyfitnessparties

    • How long have you been doing this? I have found that it can take about a month (a long, hard month) for my body to adjust to a lower calorie intake. When you consider cutting calories + increased exercise, of course you’re hungry!

      First, you might want to consider upping your calorie intake for the time being. In a related point, try to eat fewer processed foods even if you can meet your calorie target. Make your own snacks rather than relying on packaged granola bars, etc.

      Second, try eating more fats like nuts and avocados. They will keep you full longer.

      Third, try to dramatically increase your veggie intake. I have found ~2 cups of veggies at lunch and dinner (plus protein) helps me feel satiated for a longer period of time.

      Fourth, drink a lot of water.

      Fifth, and only if this is an issue for you, consider reducing your intake of simple carbs (like bread and pasta) and dairy in your overall diet. I have found that when I regularly eat pasta/bread, I retain water and bloat more…. doesn’t mean I don’t eat those things, but they are a smaller proportion of my diet these days.

      Sixth, not sure if this is an issue for you, but I gain weight (or can’t lose weight) when I’m stressed or not getting enough sleep. If this is a particularly stressful time for you, that might be something to consider.

      • Thanks for your reply, I think these might be good tips. Bread is my weakness and I know it would be good to cut it out. Sleep might also be the issue (I’d love to get 8 but get about 6/night)

        • I’d really focus on sleep if at all possible! I find I can either be hungry or tired, but if I’m both I am a horrid, dysfunctional person. And I can eat 200 calories real quick while a 90 minute nap is not available for purchase at the deli. (How do people nap for 20 minutes? It makes me a groggy mess!). Also if I go to bed within about 3 hours of dinner I don’t want dessert. That and snacking once a day and drinking water helped me lose my post baby weight.

      • +1 to ALL of these.

        Also want to add to measure your progress in ways other than the scale. You might be losing fat but putting on muscle (which burns fat by the way even when you aren’t exercising), and you might be thinking you aren’t making any progress! Other helpful ways to track progress: take measurements and take pictures. You may not see change, though, for 6 weeks, so don’t do them everyday. But everyday things you can do are to track goals like how much water you drank, how much sleep you got, etc. and be proud of achieving those goals because they are important to your health, too!

        Finally, you don’t want to be starving (or else you will put yourself in a scenario where you make bad choices or will just be miserable or put your body into starvation mode), so in addition to reducing carbs, try increasing your protein intake (which will help you feel fuller) as well as fiber/veggies. Ideally you want to go into each meal hungry but not can’t-think-I’m-so-hungry starving and leave each meal feeling satiated but not I-hate-myself-and-am-uncomfortable full. This takes training your brain and stomach, so try to practice mindfulness when you are eating and try eating half of what you would normally consider a serving. (If you still feel hungry after that, try eating half of the half that remains, and so on. Even when we cook at home, I find that I am full at about 75% of what I would normally think.) Of course, this is the poor-man’s portion control. If you want to use a scale or measuring cup, go ahead! Just be sure to eat slowly so you train your body to be happy with that serving. Finally, statistically speaking, we eat everything on your plate. So use smaller plates or don’t bring the pot/platter/serving bowl to the table, but fill your plate and then bring it to the table. If you are out at a restaurant, ask for a to-go box and put half of the meal in there.

      • Anonymous :

        Yes to this – especially the first point. I lost weight when I started eating more calories, and wasn’t hungry all the time. I was still really focused on food, so I put that energy into eating whole foods, food prep, and making sure my diet was relatively clean. This really helped me build muscle and lose fat.

        Also, if you’re running, I would pick up the pace on your runs. Warm up for 10 mins, then do 10 mins of intervals with 1 min fast/1 min slow, then cool down for 10 mins. The effect on your metabolism is remarkable.

    • Whole 30 for a jump start. If you stick to it, limit fruit and potatoes, you should see a fast difference (a lot of people lose around 7-15lbs in the 30 days). It’s a diet that requires 100% compliance, no cheating, pretty much cooking all your own food, but it works. And seeing early progress can be helpful.

      • Do Whole30. You will likely lose weight without feeling hungry. Keep up the strength training. Don’t force your body to subsist on such a low amount of calories.

      • YES YES YES. Whole 30 is where it’s AT! You can eat as much food as you want — just no grains, dairy, legumes (including peanuts), or sugar — and the benefits beyond weight loss are tremendous (better energy, clearer skin, mood lift…I could go on and on and on). Changed my life.

      • Senior Attorney :

        Okay, I’m sold. I’ve been struggling for months with a 10-and I’m just going to pull the trigger. Lovely Husband won’t be thrilled but I have GOT to do something major!! I think I will start March 1!

      • I was also going to suggest Whole 30. No amount of low calories, calorie counting, exercise was moving the scale on about 20 pounds of weight I gained after a surgery. Whole30 helped kick things off, knocked 15 pounds off, and completely helped me identify types of food that give me issues.

    • Shenandoah :

      Avoiding sugar has made all the difference for me. It’s not as simple as setting max calories at, for example, 1600 calories but not monitoring what those 1600 calories consist of. Some people seem to be able to do that, and I envy them. Cutting carbs never seemed to make a difference for me. Now I don’t guilt myself for getting a burger and fries as a treat, but I say “no” to the flurry of cookies, chocolate, and doughnuts always in the office.

    • I am in a similar position after having two kids 18 months apart. I was struggling to drop the weight until I set a minimum goal for myself of 15 minutes of exercise a day (usually yoga on days I don’t use my Peloton spin bike) and a strict low carb diet. I have lost 15 lbs since then and am getting closer to fitting back into my size 6 clothes. I eat low carb for breakfast and lunch when I am away from my family, then make as many modifications as I can when I am with them to stay on my diet (but also stay sane and enjoy eating out). I keep string cheese (low fat), carrots and walnuts available at all times for snacks at home and at work to help keep me away from my kids snack foods.

      Before starting the daily exercise routine with low carb, I was doing 45 minute spin classes 3-4 times a week and doing other body weight routines and not seeing much progress. I found that once I cut sugars out completely, it was easier to resist the temptation for sweets.

      • Thanks for your reply. I think it sounds like I need to be more serious about the balance of my intake, increasing fats and lowering carbs.

    • Cut sugar and add fat. Fat will make you feel full. If you adjust your macronutrient balance to focus on fat and protein while maintaining your calories at the 1500 mark and exercising, you should lose weight. It might take awhile, but quick results are not sustainable results.

    • Eat a lot of vegetables (not starchy ones – potatoes, corn, etc do not count but beans do because they have a lot of viscous fiber). At least 5 servings a day, but preferably more. Then I can pretty much eat whatever else I want. I lost about 20-30 lbs and have effortlessly kept it off.

    • JuniorMinion :

      While I am not in your specific situation, I can tell you what worked for me:

      1) Focus less on calories and more on nutrients. 1,500 is probably a bit light on the calorie front if you are exercising and can have negative metabolic effects. I went from a size 6/ 8 to a size 2/4 eating 2,200 ish calories a day

      2) Eliminate most sugars. Be super vigilant about checking the snack food labels / salad dressing labels as these can be sneaky.

      3) Eliminate most breads / pastas / baked goods / other simple carbohydrates as these are basically sugar

      4) Eat the full fat versions of all dairy products / get enough healthy fats (avocado / olive oil / nuts etc.) The reason for this is that low fat dairy etc all have higher sugar than full fat dairy, and when you remove fat from your diet you will replace it with something else, likely sugar.

      5) Switch from steady state cardio to intervals & amp up the weightlifting – reason for this being the more muscle you build the more calories you can eat because muscle is very inefficient. Additionally intervals / circuits / weightlifting will all lead to an afterburn effect

      6) (this is the hardest for me) severely limit alcohol as its basically an amped up donut in terms of its effects on your body. I have a no weeknight drinking rule.

      7) I try to eat often as I make bad choices when I get to the place of “OMG so hungry now”

      • Marshmallow :

        Hi, are you me? ;)

      • “I try to eat often as I make bad choices when I get to the place of “OMG so hungry now””

        Also super important!!

        I’m a really fast eater. I always have been. Even when I’m not starving, I’m always the first one done with my plate. If I wait until I’m starving, I eat twice as fast, and twice as much. 15 minutes later I am filled with regret (and too much food). No bueno!

    • Marshmallow :

      Different things work for different people, but here’s what worked for me:

      1) Have an accountabilabuddy. MFP might be enough, maybe you need a real life buddy, or like me maybe you outsource that and use Rise (which I highly recommend, btw). That means tracking your food religiously and having someone or something to nudge you when you go off track. I did not count calories because I was working with the nutrition coach through Rise, but I took a photo of every bite.

      2) More protein, more produce, less white carbs. I was eating all.the.time. while losing weight and was never hungry, but I was sticking to nuts, fruit, cheese (all the cheese!). I didn’t entirely cut out alcohol but dropped down to one drink at a time just a few nights a week. If you are hungry, eat something. Your body is hungry for a reason. 1/4 cup of nuts and a banana, cheese and an apple. Snacks should be a protein + produce.

      3) Weight-bearing exercise. Adding cardio doesn’t hurt, but I started to see my body fat come down significantly when I began attending more strength-focused classes at the gym. You don’t have to lift huge weights, but your muscles should be tired at the end of the workout.

      4) Water. Drink it all day and then drink some more.

      5) Be kind to yourself! Don’t weigh yourself every day, don’t beat yourself up if you eat a cookie. You’re a human person and your body is carrying you around the world, so be thankful for everything it does and forgive yourself if you get a little off track.

    • Up protein, cut down on sugar and simple carbs. For me, switching from oatmeal to eggs for breakfast was a simple move that took be from horrible sugar-crashing b**** at about 10:30 am, looking around desperately for some food to hoover up, to a calm person who was looking forward to lunch. And it was steel-cut oats, not quick-cooking! I now eat about 3 eggs every morning and people think I’m nuts but it’s great :) For me, it really wasn’t the calories that were the enemy: it was how I was processing the food I ate. A calorie isn’t “just a calorie” if your gut bacteria are doing weird stuff that digests some things very differently than others (it’s those bacteria that extract the calories, after all!). Learned a lot from a Whole 30, later on, but simple things like more protein are easy to implement without a major lifestyle change.

    • Run raw 5k five times a week, preferably just before a meal. Drink lots of water afterwards. It will reduce your appetite and increase calorie burn enough to help you get started on real, lasting weight loss. You have to run 35 miles to lose one pound of weight. You cannot do it with exercise alone, but don’t starve yourself either, just eat healthier and leave off the snacks. You can do it, it just takes time and persistence!

  16. Figured I’d ask: I want to do a summer weekend reunion with my girlfriends. They live in columbus, OH, nyc, and nova and I’m trying to think of a good place where we could rent a house, go swimming, cook food, and hang out for a weekend that wouldn’t be too far from any of us? Notably the NYC people don’t have cars so they might come to nova and drive with us. Just trying to think of some spots to look at first before pitching the idea.

  17. So I can’t ask this in real life bc my 35 yr old friends will be shocked I’m asking a question that a 70 yr old would ask — but how the heck do you watch a movie these days? I’m (obv) not a movie person. Last time I watched movies must have been back in HS – when you’d go to your town’s video store and rent a VHS and later a DVD.

    I don’t have Netflix or Apple TV or Hulu and I have no clue what Roku (sp?) is. We have a guest speaker coming in next week whose life was loosely turned into a major movie last yr — I’d like to be able to watch in advance of that. I looked on Amazon and it’s $13 to buy the movie (don’t have Prime). Is there really no way to watch a movie now for $5? Rather than buying something you’ll only watch once or signing up and paying monthly for a service you’ll never use again? I really don’t want to sign up for a subscription service bc if I watch 2 movies in a yr — it is a LOT??

    Help me out – WWYD?

    • Check and see if it is on Redbox and rent it that way? Our little suburb has Redbox locations outside the grocery store and Walgreens.

    • The library.

    • Redbox?

    • Do you have a smart tv? If you’ve bought one in the past 3 to 5 years, you probably do. You can usually rent movies from amazon, which should be around $5. Also, your cable provider probably has movie rentals, too. Just go to on demand and see which movies you can rent.

      • A lot of movies on Amazon are buy-only these days. Pretty annoying, but cheaper than going to a theater if you’re watching with others. (This is how my family now owns Frozen despite not having any small children.)

    • Your movie may or may not be available on a streaming service, but all of the streaming services I know give you a free 7 day or 1 month trial, so if it is, you wouldn’t have to pay anything to go that route. Otherwise Redbox, library, or buy or rent from Amazon or iTunes (some things are only available to buy, not rent, which sounds like it might be the case here).

    • Do you have cable that offers “On Demand” (pay per view) viewing? That’s typically where we watch newly released movies. Otherwise, Amazon sounds like it would work.

    • You can also rent movies through your set top box, if you have cable tv.

    • First, I’d try library or your cable on demand. Then, I think Netflix usually has a deal where the first 30 days are free, but you need to be on the ball about cancelling. I’d join Netflix (after confirming that the movie you want is on Netflix), watch the movie on a laptop or tablet, then cancel.

    • You might also check with your local library for either the dvd or a free streaming option.

    • you can rent a movie directly on amazon (prime video, video rental) for usually $4. You watch it directly on your computer within the next 24 hours. If you like TV, rather than movies, Netflix can still be a really useful service and is fun/easy to use.

    • Thanks all. I have Comcast – so I’ll see if it’s on demand. No I don’t have a smart TV – lol – bought a TV about 10 yrs ago and its only use is CNBC and 1 college football game per week during football season. Otherwise I’ll try to do a free trial of Netflix if it’s on there — and bonus — I’ve been wanting to watch Fuller House too, so maybe I can kill 2 birds with 1 stone . . . .

      • Blonde Lawyer :

        Can you watch it at a friend’s house that has one of those services?

        • I’m not going to inconvenience a friend by showing up for 2 hrs to watch a yr old movie (that they’ve likely already seen) — at that point, I will spend the $13 and just buy it.

          • This seems like a really fun thing to do with a friend…especially if it’s a good movie! Seems like a very friend thing to do and not an inconvenience at all!

    • Did the movie not have a “Rent” option on Amazon? Usually each movie has a buy or rent option, and the rent option is around $3-$5. If you can rent it from Amazon, it will just stream onto your computer.

      Or are there any of those Redbox movie rental stations near you? Around here they are by Walgreens and grocery stores.

      • It just says Buy when I look at Amazon. Will look to see if there is a Redbox someplace – don’t even know.

        • yeah – that happens sometimes and you’ll only be able to buy via Amazon Direct Video, when you really just want to rent. You can also try looking on Google Play or iTunes to see if they have it for rent.

          Otherwise, library, definitely.

    • Chromecast is only $35 and streams whatever is currently in your (chrome) browser window onto your TV using your home wifi network. Very simple to set up. If you want to stream anything in the future, I think this is the easiest way. I found that the “SmartTV” apps in my TV were super buggy and not very often updated, and then once it was like 3 years old not updated anymore at all. Chromecast has given me zero issues.

  18. Christmas in London :

    My mom and I are thinking about traveling for Christmas next year. We have about a week and a half, maybe two weeks if I take some extra PTO. We’re thinking about five nights in London–where else in the UK might be good options for the rest of the time? Are there any neighborhoods in London that you would recommend? We’d probably be looking for an Airbnb to have a kitchen and would want good access to restaurants and museums.

    • I’ve done this a couple of times, I rent flats through One Fine Stay, I loved being in Notting Hill and recently Hempstead Heath for a “ye old England/countryside while in London” feeling. Know that a lot is closed on Christmas and the next day, and around New Years too, so you might want to go a bit longer at that time of year.

    • AnonLondon :

      If you’ll be here over NYE, then head to Scotland and enjoy some Hogmanay!

    • Senior Attorney :

      We stayed in Mayfair over New Year’s and loved it. Pricey but close to everything — walk to amazing restaurants, Buckingham Palace, British Museum, the West End, National Gallery, you name it!

  19. junipergreen :

    Any suggestions for styling fit and flare dresses like this one so as not to appear too “sweet”? This style is really flattering on me (kind of apple/straight up and down) but my personal preference is not to appear too youthful (I’m a baby-faced 30). Adding a blazer makes it seem too school-girly… I don’t mind layering a button down underneath for a crisper preppy look… but any other suggestions?

    • I haven’t really figured this out and instead I e sort of given up on these types of dresses for work. Although I’ll say some blazers work better than others (longer is better, imo). And some shoes help – e.g., chunkier heels, booties, etc.
      I think if your concern is appearing ‘too sweet’ that’s something you can also counter with accessories. My issue was more that the look can veer a bit into 50s housewife.

    • No advice but interested in this as well. I also have this problem and it’s why I avoid anything flare on the bottom.

    • Wear it with boots or a different style blazer. Instead of a schoolboy-type blazer maybe try a collarless one or moto style.

      • junipergreen :

        Oo, moto style jacket and ankle boots could definitely edge it up a bit. Thanks!

        • Anonymous :

          A collarless tweed jacket and fun pumps (rather than more casual shoes that read young) can adult it up if edge isn’t your thing.

  20. Happy Friday ‘ r e t t e s! I was able to get my BAHA surgery scheduled for late March, so that was a great start to my day!

    Any fun weekend plans out there?

    I took a half day today so that I can enjoy the unseasonably nice weather we are having. I’m going to go for a run on the AT, then I am grabbing my dog and finding a spot for us to sit where I can read and enjoy an adult bev. Two of my foster kitties are going to their new home tomorrow morning, then I am off to a surprise birthday party/lunch/game afternoon for a friend. On Sunday, I am running one of the fun 25k courses in a state forest with a group of trail friends (including the race director for the 25k).

    I hope everyone has a nice day and can enjoy the weekend!

    • Calibrachoa :

      That sounds awesome! Please give the dog and the kitties some cuddles from me ;)

      My weekend will be mostly filled with post-move shenanigans – you know “where did I put that? How an I going to store this? WHY DO I HAVE SO MANY BLACK SOCKS? Cat, don’t eat that” etc, but on Saturday evening I am off to run the local goth/industrial/alternative club night, and on Sunday I plan to christen the new hot tub and enjoy some hangover sushi :D

    • Marshmallow :

      That’s great!

      It’s crazy gorgeous here so I am going to eat at my desk and then bring my Kindle to the park for my lunch break.

      My weekend will be pretty quiet and I’m happy about that. Some family is coming over for dinner tomorrow night and I still don’t know what I’m cooking yet… oops. Other than that, yoga tomorrow morning, double barre Sunday afternoon, and just getting ish done around the house. We need to do some financial housekeeping stuff we’ve been putting off but it IS getting done this weekend.

    • Not that Anne, the other Anne :

      I … might be buying a plane ticket for tomorrow? I’m really not the last minute traveling type, but my cousin has announced that she and her girlfriend are eloping before their red state basically guts their right to have their marriage recognized (as has been proposed) and I want to be there to support her.

      • Marshmallow :

        Aw man, the elopement is wonderful and I wish them ALL the happiness. I’m so angry that this is a decision they need to make. If you go, I hope it’s lovely!

    • New Tampanian :

      You sound like you have lots of fun planned. Yay!!

      I’m home sick today, hoping to kick whatever virus is currently making me want to die. I have a friend coming into town tomorrow night and then we’re headed to the Daytona 500. It’s our first time going. I’m super excited. It is FOR SURE going to be like a different world for us as we are very much on the progressive side. Lots of MAGA going to be in attendance. EEK!

    • Oooo, your afternoon plans sound awesome!

  21. Posting this again…

    Headed to the Turks and Caicos tomorrow. Any recommendations for places to go? Things to do? Dining?

    • Went 5 years ago, but my favorite “nice dinner” was Coco Bistro. Also really enjoyed Las Brisas (sp?) — it’s on the non-Grace Bay side.

      I believe we used Caicos Dream Tours for a snorkeling/conch day and they did a really nice job. The main competitor had black boats that were really blasting the music — like you could hear it from shore — and that’s not my scene so would have been unhappy with them.

    • Da Conch Shack. Yum.
      Little Water Cay (aka Iguana Island)
      Sail / Catamaran tour or snorkel tour
      If you’re on Grace Bay, Hemingway’s on the beach is a nice not-break-the bank option. Dining out can be very expensive.
      I’ve never done the conch farm but people like it (with kids especially)

    • I’ll second the recommendation for Coco Bistro. And Caicos Dream Tours for snorkel/conch. We did the half day tour and it was really fun!

      Somewhere Cafe and Lounge is also great for a low key drink / meal right on the beach.

      If you like Exhale classes, the Gansevoort has classes that are open to non-guests (for a fee).

      Other than that, just enjoy the beach!

  22. Sometimes I wish my job was 9-5 and when I left the office it was over. No pressure to move up, just sit my butt in a chair, do what needs to be done and go home. Basically the complete opposite of my science and legal jobs. What should my next job be?

    • What’s your science job/background? I know an NYC-area opening that fits that description but has pretty particular requirements.

    • You need to work at a bank.

    • I have a science/legal job (regulatory affairs for med device) and…I’m basically 8-5. Maybe more hours if a project is getting ready to go out, but I rarely take work home with me. I mean, I still think about work stuff when I’m home – not on purpose, though. Usually because my mind is wandering.

    • Anonymous :

      ECHOcardiogram technician?

    • Anonymous :

      I just left my job as an associate in a law firm for many reasons but one was that I wanted this kind of schedule. I’m now going back to school for nursing! It’s a skilled field and has decent pay. You make your report at the end of your shift and then you are done.

    • The DMV. No skills, personality, patience, or hard work required. ;)

  23. Too many bad hair days :

    There were a couple of posts this week about shampooing less; I could use some advice for this. I have fine hair but I have a lot of it; I color it at home to hide grays. I’ve been shampooing every other day for a couple of years now, but recently I realized it’s not working for me any more, because on my non-shampoo days, the following happens: my hair takes forever to blow-dry; when it finally dries it feels oily and is super-staticky; and then it won’t hold a style and by the end of the day it looks awful. I’ve tried different shampoos; it’s worse when I use sulfate-free shampoo when I do wash. (Clarifying shampoo made my scalp itch and flake, even if I only used it once a week.) The problem hair happens whether or not I’ve worked out the night before I don’t wash. I don’t know what the deal is, but I’m about to switch back work washing every day Mon-Fri because I just don’t have time to fight with my hair in the mornings. Any advice?

    • I started rinsing with apple cider vinegar when I don’t shampoo after reading about it here. I’ve found it makes my hair incredibly soft and easy to work with. It cleans off some of the oil and sweat without over-cleaning my hair.

      You might also try using a hair masque once a week? Since you’re coloring your hair, it might need more heavy duty conditioning. I don’t color my hair so I don’t have personal experience but that’s what I’ve always been told.

      • Anonymous :

        I will totally try the ACV thing. I try to use a mask every week but don’t always remember.

    • AnonInfinity :

      I wash my hair almost every day because that’s what works for me and my hair. If washing every day would be helpful, go for it! Unless you use a lot of heat to style your hair or the texture of your hair makes it clear that washing every day is harming it, I’m not super convinced washing every day is a bad thing.

      If you don’t want to increase frequency of washing: Have you tried not wetting your hair and just using dry shampoo? My hair is slightly dry (it is curly), so the rare days I don’t wash, I will spruce it up with some Moroccan Oil (if you were to try this, only put a tiny amount of the oil on the ends of the hair so that it doesn’t make your scalp look oily; it takes WAY less than you think it will). If I’ve had a blow out and want to preserve that, I use some dry shampoo on the roots.

      • Yeah, I don’t really get the NEED to not wash every day? If I don’t wash every day my hair is gross and when I do, it looks and feels good. Why wouldn’t I keep doing that?

        • Anonymous :

          Lol, I feel the same way. I did notice my hair got shinier/healthier when I started washing it less. And, my scalp felt less dry. I have also been harassed by every stylist I’ve ever had about washing too much. But recently it’s driving me crazy and I am wondering if I feel like the hassle is worth it.

    • Just to clarify–since you say it takes forever to blow-dry when you haven’t washed, you’re rinsing it with water on nonwash days? Have you tried not getting it wet (or minimally getting it wet, see below) on those days?

      I wash my hair every other day now because I don’t want to get it wet at all on nonwash days; the getting it wet is my objection to daily shampooing, not the presence of shampoo. I use a little dry shampoo and often wear it up ( I often do that when it’s clean too, though). Have you tried dry shampoo, or just barely washing the hairline/bangs (if you have them) on nonwash days? (FYI I have fine hair, lots of it, straight but with…movement? (it’s not really wavy but won’t lay smooth and silky without intervention either), used to be very oily scalp but has gotten dryer with age.)

      • Anonymous :

        “you’re rinsing it with water on nonwash days?”

        Yes. I have pretty bad allergies and I always rinse my hair at night so I don’t sleep with a bunch of dust/pollen in my hair and wake up with terrible sinus problems. I don’t think I can change that unfortunately. I do rinse only with lukewarm water (not hot).

        • Seattle Freeze :

          What if you covered your hair at night, like with a wrap or sleep bonnet/cap? Might also help your hair look better on the second day.

    • Why are you getting your hair wet if you’re not washing it?

      • Yea, this is my thought too – I try to go every other day w/ not washing, but I put my fine/straight hair up under a shower cap & do it to save time. I usually spritz w/ a little dry shampoo & then blow that dry. I know there’s all the schools of thought around shampoo being bad, but personally, I don’t see the point of getting my hair all wet and having to spend all the usual time drying it to not get the texture I like from shampoo.

        • Rinsing my hair on non-shampoo days works for me. It refreshes my hair and gets rid of any hairband lines, etc. Products like dry shampoo make my fine hair look lifeless and flat, even in tiny quantities. I save a little time in the shower not shampooing & conditioning (although in dead of winter I might still put a tiny bit of condition on the ends), but I still blow dry most days just to get the wet off and not to style or straighten.

        • I have fine curly hair, but lots of it, and I wash it every three or four days– some non wash days I use a shower cap, and some, I let it get damp.
          Day1 — wash hair, detangle with detangling conditioner, add some product while wet, air dry
          Day 2 — shower with hair put in loose bun, get hair wetish damp. Add de tangling conditioner –small amount to damp hair, detangle, add product, and air dry.
          Day 3 repeat
          Day four, wear shower cap, use curling iron on hair.
          Dry shampoo does not work for me, but re- wetting hair, and adding a dollop of conditioner revitalizing it in between full washing.

    • My hair type is like yours and I’ve accepted that daily washing is what I need to do. I’ll sometimes skip a day if my hair is on the dry side and I don’t have terrible bed head, but that happens maybe 1-2 times a week. Just wash your hair. If you’re using conditioner and heat protectant, it’s really not that terrible.

    • Anonymous :

      I have similar hair to yours.

      I also have changed to a newish haircut (pixie) that necessitates everyday washing and drying. I know this is rough for my hair over time.

      My hairstylist suggested I change to his regimen. One day wash with shampoo, next day “co-wash” with a “cleansing” conditioner. He recommended RenPure which you can get at normal drug stores and isn’t crazy expensive.

      And if you are getting static-y hair – what helps me is having a humidifier at home and not over-drying your hair. Put in some product before drying to protect etc. (I use that Revlon All-in one), don’t dry to 100% (only 80-90%), then put in a little bit of styling product if you need it (I do for my pixie).

      • Anonymous :

        OP here – thanks so much for all the great suggestions. Lots of things to try (totally going to look for that RenPure conditioner). Thanks for all the suggestions and ideas!

  24. Daily Harvest? :

    Has anyone tried Daily Harvest soups or smoothies? Any thoughts?

  25. Easy way to sell a car :

    What’s the easiest, lowest effort way to sell a car you own outright? It’s a 2013 BMW. DH wants to ship the car across the country to my FIL to deal with but I’d prefer to sell the car and just give FIL the proceeds rather than pay to ship it (also a hassle). Neither of us want to put in effort to sell it. Is there an easy way to unload it?

    • CarMax

    • CarMax or something similar?

    • Get an appraisal from CarMax and from your local BMW dealer. For what it’s worth, I shipped my car cross country for about $700.

      • +1 We shipped a car and it really wasn’t any hassle. They come to you for pick up and drop off exactly where you specify.

    • Carmax is the easiest. You’ll get less money from them, but they were hassle free when I used them (granted this was like 8 years ago). If you want to put in a little bit of time, I had success with autotrader dot com, but you would have to meet with potential buyers.

    • Senior Attorney :

      CarMax for sure. I’ve done it twice and it was super easy and the price was fine.

    • I had a great experience with Shift, if you are in California or DC.

  26. Any audiobook recs for my road trip this weekend?

    • The JK Rowling/Robert Galbraith mysteries, first one is The Cuckoo’s Calling

      Mindy Kaling’s essays

      Azzi Ansari, Modern Romance (or something along that line – about (mostly) dating and relationships in the internet age)

      Frankenstein narrated by Julie Harris (an oldie, but so well done)

      The Nightingale

      If you’re a lawyer, try any of Lisa Scottoline’s legal mysteries, especially any read by Barbara Rosenblatt. All feature women attorneys and they can also be hilarious.

      • junipergreen :

        Echo the Rowling/Galbraith mysteries, I read them in print but I imagine the recordings would be divine! I also really liked Amy Poehler’s “Yes Please” – she has “guest readers” for certain chapters who are quite fun.

        I also recently enjoyed Amor Towles “Rules of Civility”

        If you want podcasts 99% Invisible, Radio Lab, Reply All, Song Exploder, 2 Dope Queens, Bullseye with Jesse Thorn etc are all good options too.

    • Anonymous :

      Layfayette in the Somewhat United States

    • best audiobooks :

      JK Rowling who wrote a trilogy under Robert Galbraith. The first one is “The Cuckoo’s Calling” OR Ann Patchett’s nonfiction “Truth and Beauty.” I commute and these books, narrators and story lines still resonate with me.

  27. Dunder Mifflin worker bee :

    Looking for advice on dealing with a situation with my manager. I’m on a small team in a highly specialized field. Our manager has somehow managed to delegate 100% of his responsibilities to us and also comes up with extra projects for us from time to time. Everyone on the team is putting in extra effort to keep things running smoothly and regularly working more than our assigned hours. Meanwhile, our manager is working 9:30-3 most days (he’s supposed to be working 40 hours), takes long lunches, gets daily workouts on company time, and only stays late for happy hours. As far as I can tell, it’s got go the point where he doesn’t do any actual work. Even his time spent “managing us” involves having conversations that are mostly about his family, vacations, etc. He jokes that he has know idea what the people on his team actually do and about how hard we’re working, says his goal is to “work less”, and oh yeah- he is happy to take credit when our work gets recognized from his superiors. I am trying not to let it bother me, but it really does. Enough that I’m considering leaving the organization just to get away from it. Is there any sense in bringing it to HR? Or do I just need to either accept it or move on?

    • Are these assignments under the umbrella of your job description, or are you taking on actual management responsibilities that you shouldn’t be doing? I mean to some degree you should be having input into things like the direction of your team and group objectives, etc but not things like performance reviews or approving timesheets. If these things are outside the bounds of your duties, say no. Or, if you are too busy with other activities, say that you don’t have the bandwidth to support it. You don’t need to do everything you’re asked to. As for your manager taking credit, it really depends on what he’s taking credit for. He should be taking credit for the team’s accomplishments, but for example he shouldn’t be pretending that he authored some charts that you really worked on and he didn’t contribute to.

  28. Ladies, not sure if it’s too late on this thread for a response, but is there anyone in finance who can point me to good templates for doing internal cost accounting for a SaaS product? I’m not looking for something that meets formal accounting standards, but some kind of spreadsheet that outlines the various categories of costs associated with developing and operating a SaaS product.

    I’m being asked to work on a project that is quite a bit outside of my area of knowledge/experience, and it would be great to have some reference information to find out if I’m missing anything.

  29. Sloan Sabbith :

    I got a Fitbit Alta while they were on sale this weekend. Only my third day wearing it, but I love it. I’ve never worn a watch before, but I adore not having to pull out my phone to check the time (yes, I’m a millenial, why do you ask…?). I adore the external motivation- got 16K steps yesterday and the last 6K were because I wanted to get up to 15K. The alerts are actually really nice, as are the reminders to get up and move.

    Any recommendations for silver or black watch-type bands? I dislike the band it comes with. I like the milanese loop bands I see on Amazon, but I want to make sure it’s secure. I have a very, very small wrist. Children’s bracelets are ideal, adult bracelets fall off.

    Also, so thrilled about my outfit today: khaki Gap “skinny mini” pants (should have bought these in more colors a few years ago…), long sleeve base layer scoop-neck shirt, black Pleione loose/long blouse, untucked, purple puffer vest, and new black fancy-sneakers with velvet laces (Puma from the Rack). Obviously our office is business casual, and much more on the casual side on the weekends.

    • Sloan Sabbith :

      *Fridays. We don’t work on the weekends.

    • Anonymous4 :

      Thanks for the FitBit info.

      DH & I are trying to make some healthier choices, and after learning our insurance wellness app syncs with fitness trackers, we’ve started researching. I’d sort of been eyeing the MisFit, but I may look at the Alta now.

  30. Curious based on peoples’ responses re: the dental hygienist – would you say that you are a “flight” or “fight” person? I ask because so many people were like, why didn’t you just say something, and I can totally appreciate that I, in that moment, would just freeze and it would never occur to me to do that. Some of this is probably social conditioning, but thought it might be interesting to talk about.

    • Marshmallow :

      I always thought of myself as a fight person, and I will generally “fight” when the confrontation is verbal.

      But, when I was groped– I froze and then refused to confront the groper because I didn’t want to cause a scene. So, you never know what you’ll do in a situation until you’re in it. It REALLY bothers me when people say things like, “I would have kicked him in the nuts.” Oh, really? You would have? How do you know, exactly?

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      It’s not just fight or flight, it also includes freeze.

      For me it depends on the scenario. I never thought I was a freezer until I messed up cooking something, the fire alarm was going off, and all I could do is stand there, mouth agape, flapping my arms. My husband had to come over and get the dang thing out of the oven.

      More often then not I’m a fighter. That’s not always the best instinct either. There are many times where it is safer to flee. It’s good to know your instincts and train yourself to respond the way you should instead. Best example is a home intruder. You don’t want to freeze or fight if you can safely flee out another door.

      I think the situation is very different when you are in a professional environment where you are expected to be polite.

    • Anonymous :

      I fight over the phone or if I can’t see the “opponent’s” face, but I freeze in person if I am facing them.

      I froze when I was dragged into an alley and attacked, but I screamed like crazy when my apartment door was broken down while I was sleeping.

    • Anonymous :

      I’m a freezer. I wish I weren’t, but I go into complete shock and say and do nothing.

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