Coffee Break: Fringe Moccasin Flat

Eeek, what fun flats — and I love this happy green color (but note that these also come in beige, navy, and pink). I’m not usually such a fan of moccasins or fringe, but somehow these are the best of all worlds, and they look sleek but comfortable and stylish. Love. They’re made in Italy and available for $310 at Nordstrom (but only in lucky sizes at this point). Fringe Moccasin Flat

Here are two lower-priced options.

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  1. Could use some perspective on this. I’ve been on medication for anxiety for about a year. It had been working well for about six months until about a month ago when I suddenly started feeling intensely anxious particularly around work. I talked to my psychiatrist about it for a second time today and she wants to increase the dosage of one of the medications I’m taking.

    I agreed and intellectually I get that it probably makes sense but I can’t help but feel depressed about it. I’m worried about additional side effects. I’m worried I’ve been blowing the anxiety I feel out of proportion and that this is unnecessary. I feel like there should be some other answer besides more drugs. I don’t know. But I’ve been exercising, meditating (albeit sporadically), going to therapy, and am starting to run out of non-drug solutions. Should I call her back and tell her I’m uncomfortable with this? I didn’t really express that the first time. Or is this just normal jitters?

    • If your cholesterol went up and you needed a new medication to control it for your health, would you be uncomfortable with that? Anxiety is a health issue, just like high cholesterol. If your current medication/dosage is not working, work with your medical professional to find a medication/dosage that does work. I also would bring up your anxiety surrounding this in therapy and try to be more dedicated to your meditation practice . . . ask me how I know.

      All of that said, I no longer take anxiety medication because I have both removed the aggravators from my life and also worked really, really hard in therapy over the years, added a dedicated exercise and meditation practice, and utilize the coping skills that I have. It’s been a long road and not one that was easily solved with one particular thing, but instead a combination of things.

      Good luck and be kind to yourself.

      • Not OP, and I agree with your general message, but, no I would not medicate for high cholesterol. I would make dietary and lifestyle changes to correct it.

        • Anonymous :

          Sometimes you can’t though. A friend started eating a super cholesterol-friendly diet and exercising a lot. Her numbers didn’t budge and the doc told her she had to go on meds to save her life. Lifestyle changes are a good first step, but they don’t work for every problem.

          • Anonymous :

            Yeah – some cholesterol issues are diet based and some are genetic. The genetic based cholesterol issues can’t be addressed via diet.

        • Cornellian :

          You should definitely make dietary and lifestyle changes, but it does seem to be stubbornly genetic for some people.

          My non-smoking, 110 lb, active, floor nurse aunt has tried every lifestyle/diet change in the book, and it doesn’t seem to matter.

    • This is probably an annoying response, but your entire second paragraph just sounds like your anxiety talking. Seriously. Try going up on your dose and seeing what happens. It doesn’t have to be permanent if you don’t like it or feel like it isn’t working, but it sounds like you need help with your anxiety and other methods aren’t enough. It’s okay.

    • Anonymous :

      Normal jitters.

    • New Tampanian :

      Oftentimes we think that we should be able to “be tough” or “beat anxiety” on our own. You need to come to a point of acceptance that this is a chemical imbalance in your body. There is nothing shameful about taking medication. Mental health is medical health. If there are side effects, you deal with those as they come. You are ruminating because of perceived shame. You do not shame people who take medication to take care of other medical issues, do you? No one else does either, including mental health medications.

      • Frozen Peach :

        Yes. The kind of acceptance/awareness/surrender of control that you learn in meditation or therapy is the opposite of this “beat it” way of thinking. If you try the meds and you don’t like them, you’re not bound to keep doing it. But if it helps you get to a better place, that seems like a good risk to take.

    • Anonymous :

      I’m a lifelong anxiety sufferer and think meds can have a place, but I think you need to dig deeper into the emotions that could be driving this. Unexpressed anger, shame, uncertainty, vulnerability, helplessness. . . and start with work or things related to work that have caused the increase.

      • Anon for this :

        +1 meds may be a temporary band-aid solution that is helpful while you learn a long-term solution

        • Anonymous :

          I’m sorry, but how are meds just a “temporary band-aid” for a chemical imbalance?

          • Anonymous :

            They are temporary because most will eventually “poop out” (tachyphylaxis). I thought psychiatry was open about its focus on treating symptoms. Wouldn’t it be neurology if we were actually healing the brain?

          • First off – I’m pro-meds. They have saved my life. But, in my case and for others I know, they are not a panacea. They, along with therapy, diet, exercise, etc. help but it isn’t always as simple as a chemical imbalance. And, I believe the chemical imbalance theory has been debunked or not proven.

            I know that, for me, my symptoms flare up when life is out of balance and addressing those “out of balance issues” before monkeying with my prescriptions is the right answer.

    • Nothing wrong with going up a dose, just keep track of your side effects, thoughts, triggers etc. I am highly resistant to a lot of drugs. I get up the max dose on them pretty quickly then need to switch to something else. Now I’ve been on a really low dose of a different med for almost a year now. So keep that in mind, if you are uncomfortable with the higher dose there are other options.

    • Anonymous :

      It can help to commit to a specific time frame (your psychiatrist will have an idea how much time to give a new dose a chance).

      If you aren’t currently doing therapy, consider therapy to help you work through the anxiety about work or the anxiety about meds or both. Therapy can be short-term and targeted!

      Have you gotten a physical in this time frame? Have you changed any other medications? I’ve sometimes over-invested in psychological approaches when what ended up making the difference was stable blood sugar, stable blood pressure, a different thyroid dose, a different birth control pill, or better sleep.

    • I think you should listen to yourself. If you are hesitant to take more meds, why? Usually your gut is right. You can overcome this.

      • anon w anxiety :

        Well, actually when you have anxiety you can’t tell whether or not your gut is right. As an anxious person, my gut tells me I have cancer, that everyone hates me, that my husband thinks I’m dumb, that I’m a terrible mother, and that I’ll never go anywhere in life. Every single one of those things is untrue according to all the people I’ve ever talked to. But it’s what my gut says. That’s what anxiety is. When you are way more afraid than the situation calls for.

    • Anon Anxiety :

      After trying Lexapro and Celexa with minimal success, I went on Effexor for generalized anxiety disorder. My psychiatrist started at a lower dosage, which works best for those with depression, and increased to a higher dosage, which works best for those with anxiety. It has made a positive impact.

  2. I'm a sellout :

    A senior client always dismisses my ideas. Either telling me I’m wrong, or did I call a certain man to ask his opinion, or asking me to research that idea (with the obvious implication that its a bad idea).

    This week I cracked the code: Tell the client that X idea was my male colleague’s idea. Presto. Suddenly everything I suggest is terrific, why didn’t I/we think of that sooner?

    By the way, this client is a woman and somehow has a reputation for supporting other women. I’m interviewing for other positions but have almost no hope and wonder if I can ever rebuild my confidence after this experience.

    • FOOEY, this hapens to me all the time with the manageing partner’s cleint’s. They always ask wether I have run my strategy past the manageing partner, and every time I do he just agrees, so I do NOT bother to do so any more and just tell the cleint, yes, I did and he agrees. The manageing partner told me to tell them that so that i do NOT feel that I am flubbing up.

      But this points out an issue men have with women. They simply will NOT trust a pretty woman, who they think is onley working until they find a guy to marry them. That is NOT entireley true, as I will stop workeing onley if my husband makes enogh money to pay all of the bills, including those of me and our children. Otherwise, I will be forced to continue to be a partner, billing my hours until i retire. DOUBEL FOOEY!

      As to the Flat’s, Kat, I like them but need to grow 6″ before I can pull those off. Dad says I am dumpy in flat’s and I think he is right. No man wants to date a short girl with flats and a tuchus if they can find someone like Bar Rafeali to date. All the men I meet continue to ooogle her, as she “dated” DiCaprio when i was in college. If I looked like her, I could even go barfoot! FOOEY!!!!

    • You can rebuild your confidence! I worked for a terrible, terrible boss (unfortunately, also a woman) who tore me down hard, but I quit, found other, better jobs working with and for supportive people, and I am back to thinking I am the B O S S at what I do. It was 100% a her problem and not a me problem and you can put this in that box too. Your ideas are great when they come from a man, which means your ideas are still great! Just not to this crap client. Get out of there asap and know that you are worth way more than what one particular person thinks of you.

    • Anonymous :

      Just to open up another option — is it possible this is about something other than the fact that you’re a woman and your colleague is a man? For example, does he have more experience in this area than you do, or does the client have a history of working with him in the past and therefore has a trust level with him that she doesn’t have with you?

      • Anonymous :

        Eye roll. Why don’t you just trust OP that she knows her own situation.

        • Anonymous :

          There’s no need for an eyeroll or rudeness. I was simply mildly offering a possibility. People post here all the time because they want different perspectives on their own situations. I’m not advocating for my suggestion or claiming I’m right. OP is totally free to ignore it or say, “nope, that’s not it,” because she DOES know her situation.

        • Offering an alternative helps this chamber echo a little less and become a more useful place for dialogue. Sexism might be the hypothesis, but not the conclusion.

      • I'm a sellout :

        Not a particular man. She will name someone else to check with, and that person is always a man. She also throws shade on female vendors, asking the people who hire X female vendor whether they have thought to hire such other vendor who happens to be male and was recommended by another man.

    • Just to offer up a different perspective re: confidence – you cracked the code! Your ideas are good! This is a client problem, not a you issue! You have plenty to feel confident about. People suck, give yourself a pat for figuring out how to deal with one of the sucky ones.

      • Senior Attorney :


        Her behavior reflects on you not at all, and you get a giant medal for solving the problem! It sucks, of course, but… you figured it out!

      • +2! Way to be strategic. Congratulate yourself and laugh at the client.

    • Does your male colleague know about this issue? Can he be more supportive of you in meetings with this client? Obviously this won’t work if he’s not generally supportive of you already, but he may not realize what’s happening, and if you mention it he may become a better ally.

    • What about a response like, “No. In my experience…” or “No. I am confident that…” back it up with stats/facts/whatever. Try it once and see what happens.

  3. Anyone feeling like vicarious shopping? I’m wearing a white matte sequin dress to my rehearsal dinner, and looking for a truly fabulous pair of shoes to go with it. I think because the dress has shimmer, I’d go with a nude or blue shoe, and not something glittery or shimmery? I’m leaning a pair of the lower heel valentino rockstud slingbacks but looking for fun and beautiful ideas. Max budget is $800ish- here’s my dress:

    • Delta Dawn :

      Ooooh, fun– love your dress! Maybe the Jimmy Choo Lang, in Aegean (royal blue) or Robot Blue (more of a turquoise). Or would you prefer a lower heel?

      • The Lang is a little high for me but now I’m eyeing the Emily- great idea!

        Despite what I literally just said about heel height, these are fantastic:

  4. Two Cents :

    These shoes are adorable and because they are AGLs, they will undoubtedly be super comfortable as well.

    • Anony-Mouse :

      Oh I want these shoes so badly but they’re so far out of my price range! And the cheaper options don’t come in that gorgeous green :(

    • Anonymous :

      I’m glad that shoe doesn’t come in my size because I’m wildly tempted. Not my normal style at all but it’s speaking to me.

    • The dupes provided don’t match up at ALL in my mind…but this does:

      A colleague had these on in red yesterday and wowza they were great.

  5. Anonymous :

    Anyone buying the dip? If so what do you like? Can’t think of any ideas besides general index funds – as I haven’t done enough research to know if defense is already over priced.

    • I’ve lived in a rural area far too long. At first I thought you were asking for recommendations on chewing tobacco brands. Then I got to the last part. Duh. My answer would have been – never tried it but Skoal seems to be the most popular around these parts.

    • Cornellian :

      I don’t think I’m smarter than most traders, so just buy index funds every two weeks. Probably not the answer you want, but… that’s what I do.

      • +1. Just keep doing what you’re already doing.

      • Anonymous :

        OP here- that’s what I normally do. Yet every once in a while when the market sees a sudden drop of 1-2% or more, I may schedule an extra buy. Did it for Brexit when things were on sale about 3-4% off. If I don’t have time to research/have no idea what to do — it may just be a boring extra order of the usual S&P: index fund.

        • Anonymous :

          I do this. It’s like stocking up during a sale.

        • It can take a bit for the money to transfer and I worry about the sale being over by the time the extra gets there. Do you keep some money in your settlement account just for those purposes so you don’t have to worry about the transfer times?

          Like others, I basically just invest monthly or every two weeks, whenever I have leftover money and I’m confident I have enough in savings.

          • Anonymous :

            OP here — yes I keep some money in that account (in a money market) with the brokerage so that I can execute whenever I want to. Moving money into my brokerage account tends to take a few days and in every instance where I’ve bought a quick dip (like Brexit; maybe this one) — you’re right, it would have ended before the money even arrived into the account.

    • Since my emergency fund is fully funded, I invest my extra money at the start of each month (i.e. whatever I earned and didn’t spend the prior month). I was out of town for the first week of August, so just transferred it yesterday. Depending on what happens over the next week, I may have timed it well. But I just buy index funds, and any good timing on my part was unintentional.

    • Anonymous :

      Are you the poster that keeps trying to time the market? If not, carry on.

  6. Anonymous :

    A bit of a spinoff of this morning’s thread about a 30something career change to accounting…

    For someone who already has the master’s and CPA (active) but has never practiced, how would you advise actually cracking into the job market?

    I went straight from my masters program into another grad program and have practiced in this second field since then. I hate it and miss accounting, so I’ve considered going back to it quite a bit but struggle with the idea of breaking into it. My current work met the requirement for work experience in my state so I have the CPA, but I have never done “public accounting.” All of my friends from my accounting grad program got their jobs from on-campus recruiting, and all of my undergrad friends through Beta Alpha Psi. I don’t see postings for entry-level positions at larger firms because they all seem to recruit through those two channels only, and small companies/firms don’t want someone so green. How do you recommend actually connecting? FWIW, none of my friends work in my city and off the top of my head, none are left in Big 4. My masters is from a major program about 3 hours away, so it has market pull but no obvious alumni resources in my city.

    • Twice in my career, I got jobs in accounting firms simply by sending in a resume to HR, even when they had no open positions listed. There is a huge demand for accountants, especially who already have their CPA. And while maybe a tiny firm doesn’t want to train a brand new public accountant, there are tons of options between Big4 and a 5 person shop, and most are happy to train.

      I would suggest trying all of the following: submit resumes to all firms you are interested (at least in my area, most firms have a “we are always hiring qualified accountants” blurb on their website, so this isn’t like sending in unsolicited resumes in other circumstances), apply to jobs that sounds interesting even if they are a bit higher than entry level – there truly is a shortage of accountants in most areas, so someone with general work experience (implying maturity and learned professionalism) would be valuable, and I’ve seen a lot of firms advertise for a senior buy accept a staff level in those kinds of situations. Also, talk to your school – most have career assistance for alumni. You can even contact an accounting headhunter/recruiter in your area, like Robert Half. they can definitely help you get in the door in some areas of the country.

  7. Stage Fright :

    Anyone have experience with beta blockers for public speaking anxiety? I’m already on an SSRI for generalized anxiety but still get really freaked out by presentations. I’m starting to have to do more of this at work and have a larger public speaking engagement next month. Preparing so that I have the information down cold is helpful to a certain point, but I still struggle with racing heart and shaking voice. Once I feel like I look nervous, I get more nervous and start hypermonitoring, which is a vicious cycle… but I feel like this is holding me back in my career and this seems like a possible solution.

    • Anon Speaker :

      Yes they work well. I’ve also successfully done hypnotherapy for public speaking nerves.

    • I’ve used beta blockers too – for public speaking anxiety and also for auditions (I sing). Worked very well for me.

    • My doctor suggested these to me for the same pattern. Even when I felt well-prepared and didn’t psychologically feel nervous, the shaky voice, shaky hands, and racing heart were distracting and sometimes actually made me more self-conscious as I continued to speak (instead of less).

      My doctor said she commonly prescribes beta blockers for public speaking anxiety, musicians with stage fright, etc. She recommended that I try it ahead of time to make sure it would work for me. For me, the beta blocker wasn’t the solution since it lowered my already low blood pressure too much, so we ended up going with Xanax instead.

      After a few successful presentations on meds, I find it’s enough just to know that I have the option of taking meds case I need them. Eventually, I stop needing the meds all. (Present tense, because I restart this cycle if I’ve gone too long without giving presentations, since the butterflies come back when I’m rusty.) I found this so effective, and I wish I’d asked sooner! I hope you have a similarly positive experience with a beta blocker if you decide to pursue this with your doctor.

    • Huh, I have the racing heart and shaking voice during presentations also but I thought that’s just what happens during presentations. I also talk faster. But emotionally, I’m not nervous or scared. Clearly, my body is trying to tell me something.

    • My psych started prescribing Gabapentin–for the apparent off-label social anxiety treatment.

    • Try Toastmasters…seriously, you do not have to join, and it’s a great sandbox for this sort of thing. Try out the table topics section, and remember, newcomers are in the audience 99-100% of the time. That is *with* your Plan A in mind. It helps with Rustiness, too, as a non-medical exposure therapy. And you network and collaborate with other developing professionals.

  8. Un-Invited? :

    A college friend I had been out of touch with for years (my fault – biglaw craziness) attended our wedding this spring. Since then, we’ve been in touch via texts or e-mail maybe every 6 weeks or so. One of the e-mails was a save-the-date, asking whether we could participate, as the event is in a very remote location. We accepted, and she mentioned making reservations for us. The event is in 4 weeks. So far, no invitation, no details on the reservations, nothing.
    Do I simply ask her? Or has she ghosted me, just like I kind of ghosted her by not staying in touch?

    • Yes, ask! Just text and ask what’s up with the event, and whether you need to do anything more to make reservations/transportation/etc. If she doesn’t respond to that, she might be ghosting… but so far there isn’t much evidence of that.

    • I’d just send an email saying something about how time gets away so easily and you know you’re both busy and keeping in touch is hard, etc. Then you can say you had been looking forward to seeing her at [event] and were wondering if she could confirm the details for you!

    • Anonymous :

      99.9% of questions people ask on the internet can be answered by “Ask the person.”

  9. How do you launder your MM Lafleur Jardigans? It says dry clean only, is made of 80% rayon, 10% nylon, 2% spandex. Can this be washed on gentle and hung to dry?

    • Anonymous :

      I’m really cheap, so I’ve spritzed with Febreze and hung in the shower a bunch to steam it.

      I know. Bad.

      • Haha that’s exactly how I “clean” my jardigan…

        • Anonymous :

          I went to Bath & Body Works and brought a spritzer in a fragrance I liked. And since it’s got a lot of alcohol in it, I sprints with this after wearing and let dry / steam in the shower and rewear. By the time I rewear, the scent has faded but I feel like the alcohol maybe dealt a blow to anything lurking on it.

          • I have definitely done this with vodka (someone recommended it for removing smells from a dry clean dress). Once it dried, there was no detectable alcohol (or other) smell. I was skeptical – but am now a convert.

    • Anonymous :


    • FOOEY, this hapens to me all the time with the manageing partner’s cleint’s. They always ask wether I have run my strategy past the manageing partner, and every time I do he just agrees, so I do NOT bother to do so any more and just tell the cleint, yes, I did and he agrees. The manageing partner told me to tell them that so that i do NOT feel that I am flubbing up.

      But this points out an issue men have with women. They simply will NOT trust a pretty woman, who they think is onley working until they find a guy to marry them. That is NOT entireley true, as I will stop workeing onley if my husband makes enogh money to pay all of the bills, including those of me and our children. Otherwise, I will be forced to continue to be a partner, billing my hours until i retire. DOUBEL FOOEY!

      As to the Flat’s, Kat, I like them but need to grow 6″ before I can pull those off. Dad says I am dumpy in flat’s and I think he is right. No man wants to date a short girl with flats and a tuchus if they can find someone like Bar Rafeali to date. All the men I meet continue to ooogle her, as she “dated” DiCaprio when i was in college. If I looked like her, I could even go barfoot! FOOEY!!!!

    • I have never washed my jardigan but I did have a bad experience with a sloppy drycleaner scrunching up the shoulder pads. Just something to be aware of if you do try to wash it! Maybe try to smooth them out before you dry it (assuming you haven’t already removed the shoulder pads).

  10. Flight to Maui :

    Any recommendations on the best way to fly from the east coast to Maui? Best airline and route? There are so many choices and none of them seem great, plus they are all sooo expensive. (darn it, who plans a family reunion in Maui?!)

    • JuniorMinion :

      So there are two ways you could do this. You can either fly to LAX or Phoenix (my preferred because its easier to navigate / plan a shorter layover) and then fly from there to Kahului OR if by east coast you mean NYC you can fly nonstop to Honolulu and then take an interisland flight to Maui. Either one can work well. I’d plan to spend $1K – $1,200 per person for coach as thats what its usually averaged out to for me regardless of city of origin for anywhere east of California.

      All options will I think require a red eye on the way back. On the upside its Maui – I am not a beach fan in general and i love Maui. It’s a truly special place with an amazing ecosystem and topography.

    • anon a mouse :

      I hate layovers, so I would try to find a long nonstop to Honolulu, and then do an island-hopper from there to Maui.

      • Anonymous :

        I’ve done this from Newark and it was much better IMO than trying to change planes in LAX

        • JuniorMinion :

          LAX is the devil. I have had good luck with Phoenix though because it gives you a long enough leg on the way back to get some good sleep on the red eye from Kahului. I second the interisland though if it doesn’t add major $$ to your ticket.

      • BeenThatGuy :

        I flew first class, non-stop from Newark to Honolulu. Totally worth the price (especially for the return trip).

    • Anonymous :

      Alaska Airlines also has flights from Seattle to Kahului, in my experience that’s been cheaper/less of a headache than a lot of other options if you live in a place with a good nonstop flight to Seattle.

    • Anonymous :

      People who live on the Best Coast, that’s who!

    • Just booked Newark to Honolulu non-stop and will be booking last leg to Maui via Hawaiian air for around $70 each. United. Return trip is Honolulu to San Fran, redeye to Newark.

      I think American also has a lot of flights if you can go from Philly.

      PS – I booked with points via Singapore air and got my seats for 17,500 points per seat rather than 25K points per seat. I followed the Points Guy’s instructions and it was pretty easy.

      Good luck, I’ll save you a coconut!

    • If it’s an option from your departure city, fly nonstop to Honolulu and then hop to Maui, and pay for extra comfort. You get there much faster. I like Hawaiian Airlines best to Hawaii, but Alaska is supposed to be great, too.

  11. Not an Under-Achiever :

    I work hard at my job. I come in on time, and I typically leave on time. Occasionally I will stay 10-15 mins late to finish something up. My boss always reminds me to leave at 5pm and not stay any later since I’m hourly and any time I work past 5 would cause overtime issues. The problem is my counterpart (also hourly) regularly works up to an hour extra before and after work. I know this because my office has staggered schedules (I work 8-5, some people work 7-4, others 9-6, etc.) and coworkers will comment on the fact that he’s there especially early or late. My boss has repeatedly told him not to do this, but he treats it like a “don’t work too hard!” joke instead of “I’m your boss and I’m telling you not to work overtime.”
    The interactions between him and my boss aren’t my concern, but I’m worried this will start to reflect negatively on me if he’s seen as being more dedicated because he comes in early and stays late, even though our boss has expressly told both of us not to do this. Am I being paranoid? Or should I find some way of addressing this?

    • Anonymous :

      I don’t think it’ll affect you bc you are hourly. The company is telling you – don’t stay late bc we can’t/don’t want to have to pay you extra. So like a rational person you’re leaving. He is choosing to stay without pay — that’s not seen as dedication the same way it would be in a non hourly environment – it’s seen as — does he get it? Is he going to do all this overtime and later hit us up for the money when we’re telling him not to?

    • It won’t. My boss used to joke “instead of working smart you can work hard” in reference to these people. If they have no real reason to stay that late they are showing off and soon they will realize that they will never be rewarded for all that extra time they put in.

      I do come in a bit earlier and leave a little later than others, maybe about by 10 mins. But that is because I find taking many shorter breaks, say, to check this site better for my productivity than the longer, scheduled breaks.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      You’re fine and he may end up terminated. People get written up for working unauthorized overtime or working off the clock because it is a huge liability for the company.

      • Anonymous :

        This happened to my older brother. He was only officially working part time, but couldn’t get everything he needed done in the 30 hours a week he was allowed to be there for. He started working (but not reporting) the extra time and got suspended for 2 weeks. He almost got fired because of it, but he quit before then.

        • Wait, really? I don’t understand why this is a bad thing from the company’s perspective. What is the liability?

          • Anonymous :

            30 hrs/wk is the cut off for qualifying for full time under the ACA. So if a worker was regularly working more than 30 hrs/wk, the company would have to eventually offer insurance.

            However, an employee not reporting hours spent working is a big deal that can get the company in trouble with agencies if it is reported. Since company’s aren’t allowed to not pay hourly employees for time worked.

          • Anonymous :

            It is illegal to not pay an employee for the hours they worked, even if you’ve told them not to work the extra hours.

          • Blonde Lawyer :

            They have up to 3 years to make a wage claim too and in my state they would get attorney’s fees on top of that. That potential claim isn’t on the company’s books anywhere. You could have a happy employee “volunteering” that suddenly changes her mind and wants 100 hours of overtime paid back.

  12. Anonymous :

    Hi hive – Thinking of taking a corporate relocation to Tampa/St. Pete Florida area from Boston burbs. Married with grown children. Any ideas of the best neighborhoods to live or where to avoid? Price isn’t really an issue. TIA.

    • It depends on where your office will be. You don’t want to commute from one side of the bay to the other (ask me how I know). If you will be working downtown or the Westshore area, I’d recommend South Tampa (Palma Ceia and Hyde Park especially). If your office is near Brandon, South Tampa also works because you will be driving against traffic. If you work in downtown St. Pete, there are some great condos there.

    • Anonymous :

      There was an article in WaPo about how that area has escaped hurricanes but is due, along with the sea level rising and buildings/homes on unstable ground/flood prone areas. And red-state-y. Yes I’m a ray of sunshine. But it will be nice to be warm for you.

      • “Red-state-y”? You say that as if it is a negative thing.

        • Negative or positive aside, it is verrrrrrrrry different from Boston. In pretty much every way.

        • Anonymous :

          Yeah, cuz it is.

          • Not everyone would agree with you.

          • Anonymous :

            Well, obviously. But there are about 3,000,000 more people who would agree with me than disagree with me.

          • JuniorMinion :

            I enjoy red state life. Especially the part where I pay no state income taxes, have cheaper housing and the roads et al actually get fixed – no part of which happened in my former blue state life.

          • Anonymous :

            Meh, I’ve always lived in red states and some are way better than others. Moved from one with no income tax and it did a better job with maintenance than my current state (who knows where my tax dollars go because clearly not to roads, infrastructure, or education).

          • JuniorMinion :

            Also want to add that nothing is that simple and even within my red state we have similar urban vs rural and neighborhood to neighborhood differences as seen in most states I think.

          • Anonymous :

            Very few states are all red or all blue. Even the reddest states have blue pockets – for example Bloomington, IN is super liberal and offers the ‘red state’ advantages like a LCOL without the disadvantages (from a liberal perspective).

      • Small Rewards :

        Statistically, the length of time since the most recent hurricance (or 100 year flood, or coin flip) has no relevance to the likelihood it will happen. Only to our misplaced confidence in moving to natural disaster prone areas is related–which I think is what you implied ;)

      • Anonymous :

        Florida is pretty diverse and is a swing state. There are strong “red” pockets and strong “blue” pockets. It depends on where you go.

        You can check flood prone areas by simple research. Each home is assigned a flood zone and several places are not in flood zones at all. You also can easily check soil on homes and most people perform inspections/investigations before purchasing to identify sinkhole activity.

        • Hurricane Matthew was a rude wake-up to my coastal town that previously considered itself mostly immune to storms. Yes, there is flood insurance, but homeowners insurance works very differently in a named storm. For most of us, the deductible is a percentage of the insured value of the house, not a flat $3k or whatever you have for run of the mill issues. OP, something to keep in mind when calculating the price you pay to live in “paradise”

          • Flood insurance in and of itself is a different beast than homeowner’s insurance. Make sure you have a sense of how it works (and the pitfalls) before buying in an area where its available (and available because it’s necessary)

          • Anonymous :

            I’m anon at 521. I lived through the epic 2004 hurricane season and was evacuated from my house. I don’t mean to downplay it. But, there are different types of natural disasters in different places. Tornados, earth quake risk, etc. I agree, Tampa Bay is at risk for hurricanes. But you be smart about it, you leave if a storm is coming, buy appropriate insurance, and generally make smart decisions.

      • I think the point of this comment may have been that a lot of very nice areas are very prone to flooding and that it is getting consistently worse and many of the local governments, specifically in the Tampa area, are not doing a whole lot to address the issue (the governor has directed them not to use the phrase “climate change”). The article explicitly mentioned that landlords and sellers do not have a legal duty to disclose this flooding, and someone who isn’t from the area may not be aware of the flooding and risk of extreme weather, even though it has a real possibility of destroying houses and or causing severe injuries/death). It is something I would consider when deciding where to buy property and live if I was moving from out of state.

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve lived in Tampa, and the answer to your question depends highly on where you will be working and what you want in where you live. South Tampa is a very desirable part of town (check flooding history though as some streets are very flood prone).

      Riverview/Brandon/Lithia is a great area for young families. I could provide specific recs if you wanted, but you wouldn’t want to live there if you want to work in St. Pete. I’d consider these if you’re working in one of these burbs or downtown Tampa.

      St. Pete is great. Again, you’ll want to be careful of neighborhoods with flooding history, like Shore Acres. My bf had a house in St. Pete that he loved. He loved being close to downtown St. Pete, which has a great food/entertainment scene, and the Pinellas beaches, but it was a long commute to his job in Tampa. There are a lot of condos in downtown St. Pete, but also some really cool old neighborhoods.

      You can get a nice house in New Tampa, but I’d avoid it if you want to spend significant time in or work in downtown Tampa or St. Pete.

    • New Tampanian :

      Hi!!! I did that a couple years ago! I currently live in the “Westchase” area. It is a very nice area kind of North West of downtown (I think… honestly, I’m terrible w/ geography). It’s not too “red statey”. Sure it’s not Boston but it’s not as conservative as I expected.

      Whatever you do, follow the advice above. The location of work will somewhat dictate where you live. You don’t want to live and work on different sides of a bridge, basically. People complain about traffic a lot but it’s nowhere near as bad as around Boston. BUT public transpo is non-existent.

  13. Anonymous :

    Is nordstrom personal shopper a good idea for a young professional? I haven’t found what I’m looking for at the standard mall stores.

    • New Tampanian :

      Yes, especially if you are unsure of what looks best on you and/or you are trying to upgrade your wardrobe a bit.

    • 100% yes

    • I had an amazing experience there when I went with the sole purpose of buying black work pants. She helped me find a few things I would never have found on my own. There was zero pressure and I was thrilled with the two pairs I got.

  14. Resort Style :

    If you were going to a resort in New England with your SO for Labor Day, what outfits would you pack for dinner? In the SE I would just go with Lily and be done with it, but I’m it sure that’s appropriate for this setting.

    • I think a muted lilly (muted pattern wise or muted color wise) would be fine! If you’re not comfortable, I’d go with a navy/white combination, the more classic the better.

    • Lilly all the way, but with more muted accessories? NE version of prep seems to be more sedate colors in general but for women I see A TON of Lilly and Vineyard vines in the summer. I would say heels are generally not worn (maybe wedges or espadrilles), and jewelry tends to be smaller and real instead of oversized and costume?

  15. Good morning,
    This is more of a vent and reminder, rather than a question. I am a female judicial officer in a criminal court. While there is a strict dress code for male lawyers (a tie is a must) no such similar dress code exists for women lawyers, presumably because it is difficult to create similar standards. Some of the female lawyers come to court wearing attire that barely passes as acceptable. I have seen wedge type sandals (not quite flip flops, but close to it), wrinkled t-shirts with a loose type of cardigan thrown over, and capri style pants. I struggle to understand why these attorneys believe it is acceptable to wear this attire in the courtroom. Please remember–your attire does make a difference in your presentation!

    • I don’t think the attorneys you’re talking about will be reading your comment. Understand the vent, but you really don’t need to remind the people on this site to care about how they dress…

      I’d also like to point out that a suit and tie does not cure all. I’ve seen disheveled men in crumpled, stained suits show up in court. Let’s sometimes vent about them too ;)

    • I don’t work in a courtroom but I completely agree. I see lots of flip flops, strappy sandals, casual T-shirts, tight club dresses, etc in my business casual office. I’m young and I wouldn’t dream of wearing most of that stuff and it discourages me from wearing the more formal outfits that I own because I feel that I am overdressed. There seems to be a big seniority gap on how people dress.

    • are you in Florida? I have seen dress like this when working in that state

    • This is super condescending. It’s one thing to notice that some people are underdressed. It’s another thing entirely to come here and post it as if the readers here are the ones doing it.

    • Anon for this Judge :

      Oh my goodness yes! I am sure that nobody on this site is guilty, but yes! I almost came here the other day to vent about a woman attorney in my court who wore a tight pencil skirt and what looked like a going-out top: Short in front, long in back, and triangular cutouts on the side seam that showed her skin! Argh!

    • I worked in a law firm that when our of-counsel left his suit jacket in his office across the state, essentially e-mailed the firm to find one he could borrow that would “pass” one of the junior associates stepped up for the loan.

      So, yes, this happens with the guys, too. It can be a team effort.

      Said junior associate won the There Is No Justice award at our monthly blow-off-steam gathering.

      • A partner at my old fimr ran a veritable lending closet from the back of his office door. He stored most of his suit jackets, ties, and several dress shirts there. I saw several men pop in there over the years to borrow something for court or a meeting.

  16. My job is destroying my mental and physical health. I’ve tried to job search but I work nights and weekends and just can’t get the time or mental space / clarity to do it properly. I’ve tried setting boundaries at work (I.e. stop checking work email after 11 pm, taking mental health breaks) – but this doesn’t fly here. At this point I feel like my options are ask for significant time off (due to the culture I have a TON of unused vacation days) or quit. I have the savings to quit but I know everyone says don’t quit until you have a new job. I’ve tried to stick it out the last few months but my mental health is just getting worse and I still haven’t had much time to focus on updating my resume, networking, etc.

    Occasionally I’ve heard the advice your mental health is not worth some job – can someone please reassure me I’m not screwing myself over? This is my first job after graduation. The only other thing is I’m in therapy but I haven’t tried medication yet. Because of this job + my mental state it took me awhile to book an appointment. I’m seeing someone next Wednesday but My therapist said it will likely take 3 weeks to really kick in.

    • I don’t have any advice. Just commiseration. I’m in the same situation and the path forward is not very clear to me either.

    • You have several steps to go through before you quit.

      Schedule some vacation time.

      Talk to a therapist, get on medication, and work through preexisting issues.

      Figure out if your job is creating oe exacerbating mental health issues, and why it is. You want your next job to not have those problems.

      Assess how long you have been there and how long you need to be there to be a good candidate for other jobs. What industry are you in? How long have you been there?

      If you leave a job with no job lined up, give a lot of notice and leave when big projects are wrapped up.

    • I 100% agree with the sentiment that your mental health is not worth some job. Ask for the time off – they’re not going to fire you for asking, and at this point who cares if your reputation takes a bit of a hit for doing it? Don’t start medicating yourself just to deal with a job you hate; take steps to get out first as an attempt to treat the underlying cause. Then if for whatever reason you don’t get better – or, god forbid, you find that you can’t quit because of your financial situation or whatever – you can explore medication.

    • I know how hard it is to focus on looking for a new job when you are bogged down by current job. It sounds like you definitely need some time off. If you can, take a good long vacation before quitting. If you have unused paid vacation days, you might as well use them!

    • I have been yelled at for taking time away from desk (to go to therapy).

      • Blonde Lawyer :

        If you would financially be okay if you quit, you would financially be okay if you got fired, plus you would be more likely to get unemployment. Keep in mind that the people giving you crap have a problem, not you. If they are yelling at you or telling you you aren’t meeting expectations, you don’t have to care because you don’t plan on being there long. You plan on having another job or quitting by x date. They don’t need to know what x date is.

        I would recommend if you are just starting therapy, wait and get your therapist’s input before quitting. Sometimes depression and anxiety lies and you might realize things aren’t as bad as they seem now. And if they are, you can always quit later. You can also talk to your therapist about taking a medical leave of absence.

        • Thank you. I appreciate that. I’ve been in therapy since April and I’ve only gotten worse despite my therapist and I trying to implement a lot of coping strategies. She’s been pretty much like “it’s up to you, but your anxiety and depression seems situational and I would try to get away from this job asap however you want to do it.” I brought up the leave of absence and she said I would need a MD note — not sure how to go about getting that since my therapist isn’t a Md.

          Is it better to get fired and ruin my reputation (as I’m already starting to do) or just leave and recover?

          • It’s better to go seek treatment from a doctor who can prescribe it!!

          • Talk to HR. The person who yelled at you needs someone to rein them in, and ideally will assist you and your ideally-former-yeller with navigating the situation and may know of other options. Sometimes performance issues are secondary to stress. If it’s primary – get your resume to a solid headhunter/temp agency and plan your way out.

            For the MD – ask the therapist about Psychiatrists who take your insurance, or call your insurance company and find one.

          • Blonde Lawyer :

            I don’t think getting fired ruins your professional reputation. Whether you get quick or fired, your response at your next interview can be the same. I was dealing with healthy issues that precluded me from working 16 hour days. The health issues are now resolved but I still would prefer to not work 16 hour days. That should illicit a laugh from any sane employer.

          • Anonymous :

            Thank you! Haha I would love to say that in an interview. It’s just feels so hard when you’re be new to the working world to know what are reasonable job expectations and what aren’t

      • I once felt very much the same way and quit without anything lined up and it took a long time to get another job (it was right before 9/11–who could have predicted?). Even worried about rent, I still felt better (but I also had the safety of knwoing I could always go back to my parents if I had to). Weigh what your safety net looks like before the leap. Since it seems like they aren’t vacation-supportive can you invent an “emergency” just to give yourself some breathing space? I would normally never advise but you’re saying stop and no one is hearing you. Perhaps you are tending to an ill relative and unreachable because you’re spending so much time at the hospital? Just a week would probably give you a little bit more time for perspective. After that, you’re going to need some other solo days here and there. Perhaps a car breakdown that has you at the mechanic most of the day? I know this is deceptive, but you need to look after yourself. Even just a day to get the resume together (after you’ve had the week chill time) and send out will make you feel better. And you don’t want to be so burned out that you come across as burned out in interviews. Put you first. It may feel like the walls will cave in but it’s worse for you (and them) if you just up and quit without notice. If it helps to think of it this way–hurting them– because you’re always the A player, then do so. But you need to give yourself some rest.

        • Thank you. I’ve tried a lot of these excuses. I tried “my grandma is in the hospital, I’m visiting her Saturday” which got responses of “okay so can you do this Saturday night when you’re back online?” “Why didn’t you answer emails for a few hours?” The culture is just very unforgiving. I mostly knew this signing up but i just can’t do it anymore.

          • so curious to know what this job is

          • I’ve had the same experience in law. It’s not uncommon for big law firms populated by savages to treat deaths in the family as minor scheduling issues. I had car trouble one day and an insane partner drove to my house to “help” (read: see if I was lying.)

            OP, I’ve been in your shoes. Meds can help-just think of them as giving you an extra boost. Meds work in tandem with therapy to clear your mind of the major hurdles of depression (paralyzing anxiety, tiredness, total lack of motivation, spiraling negative thoughts, panic, whatever it may be) and let you exercise your new coping skills/do the things you need to do to fix your situation. You will get out. It will get better. You must dispense with caring what these people think of you- do the minimum you need to hang on to your job and put the rest of your efforts into searching.

            Not sure what field you’re in but maybe you could take a temporary position or contract position to get some freedom, but still keep a salary and avoid a resume gap?

    • This sounds a lot like what I went through early on in investment banking. Agree with what posters said above re no job being worth sacrificing your mental health and want to particularly echo Blonde Lawyer’s comment –lean the heck OUT. Flake a bit. Push back. It can be very freeing to realize that there is a huge gap between keeping everyone happy and actually getting fired. Try it out while you get yourself some breathing room and consider next steps. If you do ultimately decide to quit, you want to do it with a clearer head if at all possible. (FWIW, I’m still in IB…I may not be the most awesome ultra-dedicated junior banker ever, but I do a good job, make good money, and usually maintain my sanity.)

      • Thank you. You guessed it…do you mind sharing more? I tried leaning out / pushing back / taking breaks for myself and I got yelled at. I know they won’t fire me but it still didn’t feel that great.

    • I believe you can go on short-term disability for mental health issues. Maybe you can do that while you job hunt rather than quitting.

  17. Where is everybody?

  18. I guess this fails the “if you have to ask” test, but would you wear a DVF wrap dress to a more informal status hearing at court?

    • I wouldn’t. If I’m in court, I’m in a suit.

    • I wouldn’t either. The least formal I would go for court is sheath dress + non-matching blazer (i.e. not a suit set). And that would only be for relatively informal court settings (for example I have worn this for status conference for pro bono client in housing court). Generally I think it’s always better to be overdressed for court.

    • Never.

    • Senior Attorney :

      I wouldn’t. Court is business formal.

    • Are you 8+ months pregnant? No? Then no.

    • Possibly with a jacket – which probably wouldn’t look great and is also not as court a appropriate as a true suit.

  19. Two questions:

    I work in big law, my office is business casual (but I would say, on the more business end of biz cas). I am seriously in a rut. I have a few sleeveless dresses I like and wear without a sweater or blazer around the office. But for the life of me I cannot find dresses with sleeves that look good, I feel frumpy in cardigans (and pencil skirts don’t flatter me), and it’s so hard to find pants that are stylish but not skin tight and not ankle-length. HELP! I’m 5’4, 130 lbs, busty.

    Also, has anyone done a trip to Venice in December? Trying to figure out if it’s a terrible idea. Would like to see the city without the crowds. We don’t mind cold weather, but if it’s going to rain the entire time, that would be a drawback. Thinking about doing a couple days in Venice, and then driving up to Munich for another few days (about a 6-hour drive). Any suggestions for renting a car/driving in Europe?

    • JuniorMinion :

      For dresses – I really love the cap sleeve and elbow sleeve length dresses ralph lauren makes in a thicker jersey material. The material because of its thickness looks more work appropriate than much of the jersey landscape, and the ruching at the waist (they have a couple different cuts) combined with the length (knee length on me -5’5″) and the bust area draping (I’m a 32DD) is flattering / conservative

      They make elbow length sleeved versions of the one above and you can find them in basically every color. For pants I really like charter club at Macy’s as all their pants tend to have a bit of stretch and the non-ankle versions hit right at the top of the back of the heel which I think is flattering on my short(er) stature – bootleg or straight cut pants and up making me look like a giant square on my bottom half|BS|BA%26slotId%3D6

      KYO but I wear the above pretty often in my business end of bus cas office and no one has ever realized they are stretchy. I also wear a lot of the calvin klein pleat neck cami shells that were highlighted here a bit ago under blazers (they are sleeveless, but wider strapped) and they are very flattering around the bust.

      • JuniorMinion :

        Just to add – I realize the floral of the dress I linked above is really loud and not what you’d want for an office, but there are a ton of darker solids in the same cut that I own. They went over in ibanking in NYC fine.

      • thank you!!

    • I spent last Christmas in Venice and Bologna and cannot recommend it highly enough. Most people see Piazza San Marco and the Basilica when they’re so clogged with tourists you can hardly move…I saw them virtually empty. I went to Christmas day mass in a Renaissance church; I ate Christmas dinner in a traditional restaurant full of Italian families; I drank mulled wine and watched Venetian kids ice skate. Several of the big museums do not close for Christmas, so in addition to a just unparalleled opportunity to see the city when it’s empty, you can also walk in to the museums without a wait. I spent St. Stephen’s day in Bologna and went from church to church visiting nativity scenes, which is a really traditional thing to do. Honestly, I’m not sure I could ever go to Venice in normal tourist season having seen it this way.

    • Anonymous :

      We went to Venice in March not December but it rained the entire time and the streets there flood so easily we were always walking through standing water and garbage. It was really gross and kind of ruined the trip honestly. Everyone I know loves Venice and I don’t get it, I think because we only saw it in the rain.
      I wouldn’t think twice about chilly temps but if December is a rainy month there I probably wouldn’t go then.

  20. This is not a “fringe moccasin.” It’s a kiltie loafter.

  21. These are a fun choice!

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