Tuesday’s TPS Report: Double Face Sheath Dress

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

Rachel Roy Double Face Sheath DressNordstrom seemed to put a ton of new things on sale yesterday, including some gorgeous, work-appropriate dresses. For today I like this chestnut/black sheath from Rachel Roy. I love the quilted details at the waist, and think this dress looks a lot more lux than even it’s original price tag.  (I suspect it runs large because only sizes 8-14 are left.)  It was $378, but is now marked to $151.20. Rachel Roy Double Face Sheath Dress

Seen a great piece you’d like to recommend? Please e-mail [email protected]

Psst: Check out more great deals at the Corporette Bargains page, including previous TPS recommendations now on sale.


  1. Shoe question :

    Early TJ ladies….I have a few pairs of shoes where the inside lining is becoming loose. Just wondering if anyone has recommendations on how to repair that yourself without going to a shoe repair place. Super glue?

    • Glue will work, but only a very few kinds are actually strong enough for this amount of pressure all day. There are a number of glues that even have the word “shoe” in their names that don’t work even for a few yards of walking! I recommend the brand Locktite, which is at hardware stores and some grocery stores. Even with this you may have to reapply every once in a while.

  2. Central Park South? :

    Hi all, I’m trying to book hotels for NYC for next week. Found a good deal on the Central Park South area (looks like 57th street?), it’s one of those blind purchase deals. Any idea if this is an ok area to stay in? Thanks!

    Almost There

    • I’m staying around there too, Saturday through Tuesday, and have been assured so. Also, I think I looked at that deal (Priceline?) and I think it’s the Holiday Inn (does it have a pool? If so, it is).

    • If it’s the Holiday Inn, you’re not really in Central Park South area, but it’s fine nonetheless (just less fancy). Certainly not unsafe. You’re about 8 min. walk to the nearest train, but since it’s midtown it should still be easy to get anywhere you need. Central Park is close and there are lots of places to eat if you head down 10th avenue. You’re also not far from the Theater District should you want to see a show. Totally fine area.

    • It is good area, particularley if you are visiting the THEATER district! Go for it! It cost’s a lot of money to stay in mid-town, but it is worth it. The only other place I recomend is downtown, but mid-town is better.

      This is a VERY nice dress, and if I were in the market, I would buy it, b/c it is NOT revealing up top and it has VERY nice line’s. I must drop 10 lbs before I would risk putting this on, and I am not that crazy about the tan color. I perfer sharp color’s like FIRE ENGINE RED and DARK OR ROYAL BLUE to this. I used to look alot like this model, b/f I packed on the 10-15 lbs, and my dad is getting on my case every day in the e-mail’s. ENOUGH DAD! I get the message! FOOEY! I will loose the weight!

      I have a court date tomorrow with a new cleint, who the manageing partner got to try us out. The manageing partner cited my expertise and shared one of my breif’s with the new cleint. It is NOT confiedential once you file something with the court, so that is why the manageing partner was abel to show the cleint my breif. So the cleint came in to our office last month and dropped 5 cases off with me and this is the first one. It is onley a simple WC case, but I think I can get it disposed of by motion b/c the statue of limitation’s is at issue. I do NOT have time to get into the detail’s but the case will “turn” (as the Judge says), on when the alleged injury occured. If it occured when I say it occured, then we WIN. But the plainetiff says it did NOT until later. We will see, and I am the one who the judge like’s so mabye that will help. The manageing partner want’s me to wear my Black Suit. I guess he know’s what he is doieng b/c he is comeing with me for moral suport. YAY!!!!!!

    • AnotherLadyLawyer :

      Took a look at the Priceline deal and the area is a little bigger than Central Park South, but anywhere in that box should be fine. It is all plenty safe and any location will be close to trains/buses and close enough to walk to restaurants and other fun things!

    • Very safe, but it’s also a touristy area.

    • Make sure you check out the bedbug registry (first result when googled) before you book. The bedbug problem is bad everywhere but especially in NYC and you’d hate to bring the little buggers home with you.

    • If it is the Holiday Inn, I happen to live right across the street and confirm that it is a very safe area!

      Within walking distance of Central Park and many of the Broadway theaters, but quieter (and with less giant. crowds. of. people.) than, say, Times Square. Tons of restaurants right down 9th.

  3. Divaliscious11 :

    I really like Rachel Roy, but only accessories and the length on her dresses never seems to work for me at 5’10″….

  4. Get a tattoo on your back, I thought
    Nobody will ever see that, I thought

    Alas this dress is not for me… now if you would excuse me, I go cry in the corner (still love my tatts, though)

    • Tattoo or not, I wouldn’t wear a dress to work with that much of my back exposed (gasp, the horrorz!).

      • Almost There :

        Blergh I thought the same thing, and also – GO AWAY EXPOSED ZIPPERS!

        • So glad someone agrees with me about exposed zippers! It’s such a peeve of mine. It makes a dress look so cheap.

        • Research, Not Law :

          AGREE! Why have they not gone away yet???

          I’m okay with the back because I’d be wearing jacket/cardi anyway. I like the low back for “after five” events. I really, really like this dress. Except for the zipper. That’s a deal breaker.

    • This one will cover your tatts and it is on sale! (limited sizes)


    • Get a tattoo on your upper arm, I thought.
      You’ll never wear a sleeveless dress to the office anyway, I thought.

      Sigh. And then it became appropriate to wear sleeveless sheath dresses to the office. (Still love my tatts, though!)

    • viclawstudent :

      Ha, I have the same problem, and mine is quite close to the top of my spine, so a shirt or dress w/ any sort of minor dip in the back is a no-go for work. I’ve just decided that such items would not be suitable work-wear …

      I also have a tattoo on my upper calf (same thought process!) that requires pants, longer skirts, or thicker nylons to cover up.

  5. Does anyone know if the (this site) Weight Watcher’s group still exists? I joined the on-line WW last week, and would love to connect if it does!

    • Ooh, I’d love to know the answer to that as well! Also, is it worthwhile to join if you’re only looking to lose about 10 lbs?

      • I didn’t find it to be. The current version, for me, just didn’t work and allowed too much food. I have a real problem with the fact that they allow unlimited fruit. Just way too many calories and way too much sugar! If you’re 30 or 50 lbs overweight, I’m sure eating three pieces (or more) of fruit a day won’t hurt. But when you’re trying to lose less, every little bit makes a difference. Also, in the past, if you ate a large amount of a vegetable (2 cups or so) it would start to count, but now you can eat all the vegetables you want. I tried it for a month and was very diligent about it and did not lose one pound. Several years ago, just after law school, I used the older version and lost about 25 lbs very easily. But then, I was also several years younger so who knows.

        • Great, thanks for the info. Much better to know now than to drop the money and then find out.

        • You can customize it though – if you aren’t losing weight with your current points target, it allows you to adjust down your daily target, or you could add fruit as a custom 1 point food if you think that is your problem.

          When I follow WW, it works for me, although very slowly. Mainly because it forces me to plan my day/week’s meals in advance and to look at the big picture. I also personally like the idea of being able to “earn” more points for treats by exercising. However, when I fall off the wagon, I fall off hard – during those weeks, I don’t lose, or even sometimes gain. Just like anything, you have to actually do it for it to work, just signing up isn’t enough.

          • I would also add that it might depend on your current eating habits. Sugar was a huge problem for me – so being able to eat sweet fruits or veggies like carrots, apples, bananas, etc. has really cut down on my cravings for the bad processed sugar that I was eating.

          • I should also add that I got the best results from WW when doing the meetings version with my sister, then I did ok doing it with the at work meetings version. I’m not doing as well with it online, which is partially due to the fact that I’m not very self motivated right now,but partially because doing it online doesn’t seem to get you quite as motivated. I missed the initial part of the question about doing it online – I would agree with TBK that it’s not very good online – slightly better if you started out with meetings then switched to online, but yeah, online only is kind of meh unless you are really self motivated or if you form your own “meetings” with someone IRL.

        • It’s not unlimited fruit and vegetables, is it? I haven’t gone in a while but my understanding is that fruits and vegetables are “prepaid” – up to five servings total per day. That’s why they’re 0 points. But you learned something valuable – fruits are your weakness. Is that something you would have learned without tracking?

          • It’s not that fruits are my weakness. It’s that I feel that if I’m paying for them for a plan, I expect to not have to tinker with it unless they tell me I need to tinker with it. I got really fed up because I was being completely obsessive about it and when I finally went on a message board and asked what other people were doing, they basically said “oh, I’m not really following it as written — my group leader says free fruit doesn’t work anyway, so I’m just sort of tinkering.” There are plenty of very good free apps that track and make suggestions and that, yes, require tinkering. Paying monthly for something I need to figure out myself is just ridiculous. LoseIt, FitnessPal, and Livestrong are all great apps/websites for tracking and are all free.

          • Also, if it’s true that it’s five servings total per day, that’s not included anywhere on the site (I looked). I don’t go to meetings. If they advertise an online-only version, the information provided online should be the same as what’s provided in the meetings.

          • I did used to attend meetings (I stopped going because I have a lot of doctors to visit) and the common misconception the group leaders repeatedly tried to explain was “fruits and vegetables are zero points so I can eat as many of them as I want”. Zero points does not equal unlimited consumption, except for water. There should be a “healthy guidelines” check box on your daily food log, where you check off how many glasses of water you had, how many servings of dairy, healthy fat and fruits and vegetables. The F&V category should have five boxes.

            Could you have determined consumption of fruits (or sugar in general) would lead to weight gain without paying for WW? Probably. But every person is unique and it’s unrealistic to assume that an algorithm based on thousands of people will *always* work for every person. That being said, I do think the algorithm is pretty good because they assign weighs depending on the nutritional value of the food so a 200 calorie breakfast may actually have a higher points value than a 230 calorie breakfast because of fat or sugar or whatever. YMMV but I liked WW and I think it’s a great teaching tool.

  6. Lovely dress though not for me, as brown generally looks horrible on me.

    • Agreed. I have a brown and orange tartan skirt that I never wear because I can’t wear brown on top. I look like death warmed over, brown eyes, brown hair, pale skin.

      • Ivory on top instead? Brown, but with a scarf as buffer between your face and the shirt? I also think bold makeup lets you get away with a much wider range of colors, but I know it isn’t for everyone.

        • I have the same coloring (dark brown hair and eyes, light skin) and brown just looks terrible on me. I look completely sallow and unhealthy. It’s not something make-up can really help.

  7. Just a random recommendation: I bought a pair of Paul Mayer ballet flats last week and oh my god, are they comfortable! They also look like they are quite well made. The line doesn’t seem to have many styles and colors yet, but they’re awesome if you like the quilted Chanel flats look (They also have some heels). I especially like that they have a line of ballet flats where the front vamp part is larger than other flats, so no chance of toe cleavage if you have longer toes!

    • Yes! I have had Paul Mayer ballet flats for a few years now and love them. I like how you can tighten the string that goes all around the shoe, and they are generally so comfortable. I have a pair of the kitten heels, too, and like them, but wear the flats all the time. My first pair was quilted black suede, and the front part comes up a lot. I find them more comfortable than the leather ones, but I haven’t seen them lately in stores.

      • I got the quilted black leather. :) The store near me that carries them only has the “boring” colors sadly. I really want a pair of the bright blue, green, or orange ones but they do seem to be way harder to find. I think you can mail order anything from their flagship in NYC though.

  8. Reg. Poster, Anon for This :

    Career Question – current big law attorney (3yrs), went to a very good law school but not crazy impressive grades, no journal or anything. ADOJ position has opened up in my (smaller market) city that I really, really want. I’m a civil litigator now, mostly business and commercial, some banking-related, and don’t have state or federal background (my summers were in house and at my current firm). Any idea on how to best present my experience for a DOJ gig?

    • I think it’s mostly the same as other jobs. Have a pitch about how your experience translates to the skills they are looking for. Have a pitch about why you want to leave the private sector for public service (hint: “better hours” is not a good answer and, especially at DOJ, not always the case). You will probably have to apply through USAjobs but you should work your network to see if you know anyone at the agency or in the hiring unit and ask them for advice/alert them to your application. Anything you can do to make your application stand out among hundreds of applications is good. If you are asked to answer a series of screening questions, answer yes to every experience you can plausibly support. If you answer “no” to experience they are looking for, you will be automatically disqualified before anyone with authority even sees your application. E.g., iIf you are asked, “Have you handled X type of cases” and you once did some research for an hour for to help someone else out on her case, answer yes. You can explain the limits of your experience in an interview if you get one (and explain why you think you can excel at the job despite that limitation in your experience). Remember that these jobs are extremely competitive, so it’s not a reflection on you if it doesn’t work out. Good luck!

    • LeChouette :

      I take it it is an AUSA or other courtroom related job?

      Have you taken depositions? Written briefs? those are all forms of advocacy, even if not courtroom advocacy. I would emphasize those skills, and to the extent you have helped prepare for trial or hearings, even if you weren’t standing up, as well. If you weren’t on a journal they might want to know about your writing experience, so to the extent you have drafted briefs I would include it.

      Have you done much pro bono or other public interest work? generally the doj likes to see a commitment to public service, so I would emphasize those items on your resume as well.

      Good luck!

    • At three years out, no one will expect you to have very deep subject matter knowledge. They’ll be looking more for basic litigation skills, which it looks like you have. Also, the lack of government experience is pretty much irrelevant. Except for the honors program, DOJ routinely hires from private practice (the government isn’t interested in footing the bill for all the training new attorneys need — they like them better a couple years out). I’d say you sound like a great candidate. Here in DC, the competition can be fierce and lots of applicants have the typical great school + great grades + law review + federal clerkship + AmLaw50 firm, but that’s also DC. I think one concern the government often has about law firm associates is that law firms can be very insulating and young lawyers often don’t have a lot of first-hand experience. If you’ve taken a deposition, gone to trial, argued a motion, etc. I’d definitely highlight that. If you have other experience that shows that you can take a case and run with it with only minimal guidance, I’d also highlight that.

    • A former AUSA with whom I worked at my last firm told me that highlighting pro bono experience/commitment to public service is huge for the DOJ. With that said, I have basically the same background as you (except for I was on law review at my very good law school), and even though I thought I did a good job of highlighting relevant litigation and public service experience, I received a form rejection letter barely two weeks after submitting my application to the DOJ (though I am in a large city, so perhaps competition is tougher).

  9. Blonde Lawyer :

    Just a pleasant reminder – if you shop online with your credit card and get extra rewards or coupons for going to the retailer via your credit card’s website, don’t forget to do that. I rarely bothered and just started doing it. I’m racking up tons of bonus points. My base is 1 point per dollar. Right now I get 5 bonus points for every dollar spent at Nordstrom, 7 for every at PetSmart and so on if I go through their site. I bought a few things this last week and got almost 1000 bonus points for stuff I would have bought anyway. I also got 15% cashback for a Body Shop purchase plus 5 times bonus points. Body Shop was doing buy 3 get 3 or buy 2 get 2. I’m cleaning house over here. I only recommend using this though if you are VERY in control of your spending and only log in when you are buying something anyway. Don’t log in “just to see the deals'” or you may end up on a shopping spree you don’t need.

  10. I posted late yesterday so I’m reposting to see if anyone else has any insight on this. We bank with USAA, which has a lot of online budeting tools. I know people love Mint.com. We’re trying to get a better handle on our budget and I’m wondering if it’s worth also using Mint. Does anyone have experience with both USAA and Mint who could tell me how the tools on Mint compare with what USAA offers?

    • I don’t have USAA so I can’t compare them, but Mint is free, so the easiest thing to do is sign up and poke around a little to see if it has features you like. I’ve found Mint to be pretty good when it comes to looking at past spending habits (we spent HOW much at Target last month!?!) but not so helpful when it comes to future predicting or balancing between budgets, so I most use it just as a place to see all my accounts at once.

      • But FYI – MINT doesn’t always work out. Both GE Bank and Nordstrom’s CC will not allow Mint now to track their customers’ accounts citing security. The fact that they are concerned makes me concerned. Just something to ponder.

        • Agree with this. I use Quicken because they have been around for ages, and it’s not a giant PITA to schedule future transactions, which is key for my money management/sanity/financial responsibility.

        • My credit union doesn’t work with Mint either.

    • Just remember what you do when you set up Mint. My husband loves gadgets and interweb tools. I’m more of a pen and paper gal. And every time he logs into Mint he gives me a different answer when I ask questions. No, I don’t think he’s hiding things, he just has a reeeeeeeaaaaaaaaallllly bad memory.

      • Just realized how unclear that previous post was. He forgets what he sets for budget categories and how he categorizes things. Which naturally means when I ask how we did in different categories, I get different answers. Moral of the story: remember how you categorize expenses. (We went through this last night which is why it is fresh for me!)

    • Divaliscious11 :

      I have both but haven’t tried the USAA features because I’d already spent the time on Mint….

    • SF Bay Associate :

      I use both. Mint is much better for tagging/categorizing purchases, and the resultant charts/graphs from those tags, than USAA.

    • I have USAA and tried Mint for a month, then went back to USAA.
      I already checked the USAA website when I deposited checks, paid rent, etc. Why use another service when my bank already had similar features in the “budgeting and goals” section?

      It was really easy to set up. I did have set a “rule” for shopping returns: on the default settings, the first transaction would show up on my budget, but not the later amount the store credited me. I also set a rule so paypay transactions would be marked as “clothing/shoes” instead of the default “transaction.” Those were the only real changes I made to the default settings.
      Mint has more graphs, but I’m happy with USAA.

  11. Browneyedgal :

    Career related question – I’ve been practicisng law for the past few years – but mostly providing advice and counsel and doing transactional/compliance work (as an attorney). I recently got an offer to do compliance in a non-legal capacity (work is legal, but position is in HR and is a non attorney role). If I take it, will this dash my ultimate goal of going in-house and practicing in the future?

    • Maybe, maybe not. Why do you want a compliance job?

      • browneyedgal :

        I feel like my current job is dead end (no promotional opportunities) – and i’m exploring my options. I like the substance of this compliance job, but am worried that it will limit my future career options.

  12. Children's fashion :

    It is time to get my son his first suit jacket. He’s 10 years old. He likes to wear black, and seeing as he’s mixed race (half black, half white), it looks good on him (I’m a “summer” so can’t wear it at all). But straight black just seems extreme on a child. I’d like to get him a charcoal tweedy jacket, or maybe pinstripes.

    There are very few black jackets for kids online, and I haven’t been able to find any tweed or pinstriped ones. Is tweed just entirely out of style for kids? What could I get my son that’s mostly black without being so severe? Any good websites to browse?

    • I don’t think black is too severe for a child. He could always dress it up with a bright tie or collared shirt :)

      • Children's fashion :

        Maybe I just like tweed. I keep picturing how cute it would be with his curls.

        • e_pontellier :

          Maybe he’ll grow into it!

          • e_pontellier :

            (By that I mean, forcing it on him too early might cause him to hate it for no reason. But YMMV; I don’t have kids.)

          • e, he’s not into it, but I want him to get used to it so he’s not distracted by it when he has to wear one. Sort of like I have him get the table and order his own meal at a restaurant.

          • e_pontellier :

            Oh I’m so sorry – I totally meant he might grow into the idea of tweed. I think getting him a jacket at this age is a very good idea, and if he wants black, maybe just stick with black because he is still growing (right?). Again sorry for the lack of clarity in my response.

    • Lands End has boys’ blazers in a really dark navy, if you want to go that route, and J Crew crewcuts does, too.

      But $158 for a jacket for a 10-year-old? I do think it’s hard to justify spending big money on a jacket that a kid will outgrow, maybe in a matter of months. (If he has what my friend’s little boy used to call a “growth sprout” it could be really fast.)

      My son needed a dress-up outfit when he was maybe 8 and then again at about 12 (for weddings) and each time I just went to a really big thrift store that had a good selection and bought him a sport coat in navy that he wore with khakis. Glad I didn’t spend a bunch of money — at the wedding when he was 8, he ended up splashing through the creek that ran along the edge of the outdoor reception — and tempting the tuxedo-wearing ringbearer in, too!

      If you live in an area with lots of fancy private schools, go to consignment or thrift shops and you’ll probably find lots of blazers that are in great shape. Also ditto on e-bay. A 30-second search showed tons of options there, including a size 12 in black corduroy; that fabric might take the “severe” edge off the black color.

    • Are you looking for a blazer or a sport coat? I agree that black is too harsh for a child. I like the J Crew blazers (navy with gold buttons — a traditional blazer) paired with khakis. Generally agree with Jules’ advice. I will also pair a blazer with jeans for less formal occasions since I have the blazers anyway.

      • I wish I knew the difference! I have never thought about men’s fashion before. I’m a single mom, so no hubs to fuss over, no brothers, DS wears uniforms to school, khakis to see a show, and athletic gear as much as her can=a complete lack of experience.

        Can you explain the difference between a blazer and a sports coat, and what to wear with each? He likes cords, but I’m not sure that’s dressy enough for the jacket.

        Navy isn’t his color, but I’ll take your suggestion as a way of saying that “dress pants” aren’t required.

        • looking at this http://www.esquire.com/style/tips/blazer-vs-coat-vs-jacket-0709 I think I want to get him a sports coat.

        • Hi! Are you not “hanging out” on the WSJ Juggle site? I haven’t been over there in a long time. PHX (Mama)

          • Phx, have you been on the juggle? I don’t recognize the handle. I get a little sick of the trolls over there (I sarcastically call them my fan club), still pop in sometimes but am at the Totebag more often. Have you been on there?

    • Macy’s has a decent selection of dress attire for boys. I got my son a Nautica tweed jacket for around $60. It is medium gray, not dark, and goes well with khakis, jeans and formal black pants (Perry Ellis, $7 at Marshall’s).
      While you are at it, get him a black dress shirt, too. Even if you end up buying a dark jacket, a light/bright tie will liven up the look.

    • Anonymous :

      I have no advice, but just PICTURING this is killing me! SO CUTE!!! I second the idea of tweed if he has curly hair ;o)

      • saacnmama :

        Thanks! I don’t have much confidence re: fashion choices for him at all, because what works for him can be so different from what’s good on me.

        Right now I’m thinking of this one http://www.zappos.com/appaman-kids-mini-professor-blazer-little-kids-big-kids-black-tweed or maybe the herringbone at Lands End. The first is too dark for the black shirt, I think

        • There is a full Appaman pinstripe suit on 6pm in size 10.

          • saacnmama :

            You are wonderful!

          • OK, I’ve ordered both and we’ll see which looks better on him–the Appaman suit at 6 pm, with a bright blue Calvin Klein shirt and http://www.landsend.com/pp/boys-herringbone-blazer~245367_1189.html which he would wear with a black shirt from H&M and grey JCrew dress pants that we picked up at the mall tonight. I wish I could find a good vest (not a sweater vest) to add color to that grey and black ensemble, but the closest I can come is are plaid baby vests.

  13. Does anyone have experience with diabetes? I have never had any blood sugar issues before, including when I was pregnant, but over the last few months I have been experiencing trembling, mild but constant headaches, dry mouth, etc.. My daughter is 9 months old, I have been bfing her and I fully admit that I haven’t been eating really well. I am going to the doctor this week for a blood sugar test, but I am just curious whether anyone has experience with this.

    • have you given up caffeine recently?

      • I have cut back recently – coffee was making these things worse, so eliminated it about 3 weeks ago.

        • Hmmm… well maybe the dehydration thing mentioned below, then.

          I tried cutting out coffee and things got very bleak for me. I decided not to try again.

    • Thyroid?

    • It could be from breastfeeding–I was always incredibly thirsty and could never get enough to eat. Maybe you are dehydrated and have low blood sugar from not eating enough. I think you are supposed to eat more while nursing that while pregnant! I had gestational diabetes and the doc told me that pregnancy is kind of a stress test for your body, so that if you are at risk, it will show up then. So I would think that you would have been more likely to have gestational diabetes than deveolp it a few months after pregnancy. But I am certainly not a doctor and think it is a good idea to get checked out!

    • You can buy a self-test A1C kit at a drugstore or (at least here in flyover country) the pharmacy offers the A1C test in store with the same people who give flu shots.

      That will let you know how your blood sugar’s been doing over the past 2-3 months. You can do the A1C test any time (you don’t have to fast first).

      It’s ~$25 I think, but might be good info to have before going to the doctor.

    • All of the above sound likely; I’ve had most of them (being evaluated for diabetes right now)

      Make sure your doc takes your concern seriously–this is no time for a “reassuring” pat. You need to figure it out and get your strength back.

    • Research, Not Law :

      It sounds like you are dehydrated and have low blood sugar from breastfeeding. It takes a ton of water and about an extra 500 cal/day.

      • You’re right, I’m probably not getting enough water. Off to refill my water bottle now!

  14. AdviceNeeded :

    A good friend is getting married in a few months. She is in her 30’s and ready to tie the knot. Problem: she is absolutely foul about her wedding.
    1.) her parents won’t pay enough
    2.) this isn’t” the wedding she would have had” if she had “gotten married in her 20’s”
    3.) engagement parties aren’t worth it b/c you don’t get gifts (yes, said aloud)
    4.)more guests=more gifts (said clearly and outloud)
    5.) there are “A”, “B” and “C” list guests, and therefore invites will be sent in waves

    I don’t what word to use other than “foul”. Just listening to this is awful. I considered sending the Emily Post Wedding book as a gift. Surely there are better solutions. Any thoughts?

    • e_pontellier :

      No advice but she sounds miserable. Does she have a younger sister who got all these things she wants? Or is she just scared about getting married? Sounds like she needs a therapist… but I also feel like that’s what we always say on here. Good luck; that sounds awful.

    • Oh, that is hilarious–love your gift idea!

      Maybe you could talk to her about premarital counseling, try to steer her towards the issues that she and her husband will face. Unless she’s just worried that he won’t bring home enough $$$$.

      Is she generally missing her younger days? Maybe you could focus on that?

    • Is this greediness way out of character? If so, maybe just detach emotionally and ride it out. If not, why are you friends with such a terrible person?

      • e_pontellier :

        Lol. DC Jenny, your second question is hilarious/awful.

        • That question is exactly what I wondered, but was too chicken to ask it. Seriously, if this is typical or if you think you’re getting a look at a true part of her character that you didn’t notice before, you might want to reconsider the friendship.

          Also, I wonder what she’s saying about you/your gifts/contributions to her shower, engagement party, etc

          • AdviceNeeded :

            @saacnmama, I wonder that too… Gosh, if everyone else is so awful and inadequate, then what am I?

      • AdviceNeeded :

        Thanks, everyone! I really like suggesting , in a kind way, premaritial counseling and saying something like “Wow, that sounds harsh. What makes you say that?”.

        No younger sister, but a younger SIL who recently got married.

        FWIW-I’m friends w/ her because she is also loyal, funny, honest and reliable.

        I’m glad that I’m not totally crazy, and he behavior is, in fact, pretty horrible.

        • I’m not married, so I can’t suggest any good ones, but if there’s a book you’ve found helpful in your relationship, you might give that to her. If you bring up premarital counseling, you might do it in a very matter of fact way that suggests that everyone does it, or just asking which program they’re doing in the same way you ask which caterer or venue.

          Good luck with the friendship!

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      It would be hard for me not to say something, if this is how my friend was behaving.

      If it was in the moment and she had made a really awful comment, I might just stare at her for a few seconds and then say “Wow. That’s a really harsh thing to say about [your parents]. Why did you say that?”

      If overall, I thought this *wasn’t* her personality and she just needed a gut check from a buddy, I might say something like:

      “Friend, I think the stress of this wedding is eating at you. I’ve never heard you talk like this! Why don’t you and I take a weekend day and just do lots of fun things, so you can get away from it? We can go to the mall, get pedicures, go for a walk – only rule is we can’t talk about the wedding! I think it’ll help you relax and keep perspective on things. “

    • Maybe she is just stressed about the wedding and paying for it? Does she say these things when it is just the two of you or when other people are present? I would try to talk to her about how she is feeling about the wedding. Perhaps say something like, “I’ve noticed you aren’t acting like yourself lately. You seem stressed about planning the wedding. Is there anything you want to talk about or that I can help you with?” Hopefully she is acting unlike herself!

      • Is she very close with you? Any chance you are the only person she’s sharing these thoughts with? Maybe she’s just venting to you when she’s really stressed, but she doesn’t feel that way all the time. I’ll admit to having some of the thought s she’s saying about wedding planning, but I would never go around saying them out loud because people would think I was a jerk.

        • MaggieLizer :

          Yeah, it kind of sounds like a filter problem and she needs a friend to help her lock that down. It seems like she’s really stressed about the budget. Maybe a book on budgeting for a wedding would help her refocus her energy? Many commenters here have recommended A Practical Wedding.

        • Agree that would be best case–not thinking the same thing behind your back, just using a really trusted friend as a safe “vent”

    • Not taking her side (she does sound nasty) but I can see where she’s coming from with “2.) this isn’t” the wedding she would have had” if she had “gotten married in her 20′s”” because it’s something I’ve come to terms with myself.

      In my 20s, everyone was expected to “save the date”, travel hundreds of miles, and be generally available for any and all weddings. Being in my 30s, if I were to get married now, my friends just aren’t in the same mindset re:weddings. They are pregnant, have kids, and have less flexible work schedules and budgets.

      It’s hard to accept that even though I shelled out $1000+ to travel to a friend’s wedding and took 3 days off to do so, that this friend may not be in a position to do the same for my hypothetical wedding–just because time has passed and her situation has changed.

      • Kontraktor :

        Agreed. Not taking the friend’s “side” either, but #1 and #2 resonate particularly with me. My parents paid for nothing at my wedding, even though they could have, we were young, and even small help would have helped a lot and we would have been very grateful. It was somewhat hurtful my parents acted like they wanted nothing to do with it and barely contributed. My mom wouldn’t even come wedding dress shopping with me. Regarding number 2, I think weddings are tough because we want the day to be perfect and happy, but sometimes we have to face harsh realities about what we can afford, who will/can come, etc. That can be hard to stomach sometimes, especially when we are bombarded with images and experiences of the world/our friends having these super intense weddings that may not be burdened by the same concerns we are facing.

      • Research, Not Law :

        This, plus Miriam’s thread above.

        Complaints 3-5 are greedy, but perhaps they are coming out of the stress of paying for the wedding. Complaints 1 is common. Complaint 2 is understandable. I never said it, but I felt the same way. I was jealous of the weddings, engagement parties, showers, and etc that my friends had in their 20s when everyone was available and lively. They were young and beautiful, like a bride ‘should’ be. They had their fathers walk them down the aisle, sleepover with girlfriends the night before, guests dancing the night away because they didn’t have children bedtimes to think about, and all that ‘young’ stuff.

        Sounds to me like a filtering problem and/or need to vent. Wedding planning socks, but I’m sorry that she’s acting like this and that you’re having to listen. Hopefully she’ll snap out of it during the honeymoon and you’ll soon have your old friend back.

        • AdviceNeeded :

          Her parent’s ARE paying for part fo the wedding. $20,000 to be exact!

      • saacnmama :

        Karen, my little fantasy for years has been to have some sort of big party to celebrate…something. A big birthday. Buying a house. A career goal. Whatever, the fantasy is always a big guest list with friends bringing their spouses and kids on long airplane flights (because my friends are not all in one place) and having a fantastic time with me as the center of all their attention… It’s probably very related to having had the “wedding I could have had”.

      • Anon for this one :

        This +1000.

        I am in my mid-30s and recently got married. Several couples who had saved the date and told us that they were planning to come did not–one got pregnant, several could not find child care, and one decided to go to a wedding closer geographically–even though we had made it, despite remote locations and studying for the bar, to all of theirs. Your life is more complicated when you are in your 30s for better or worse. I made peace with it–the wedding we had was way better than anything we could have had 10 years ago and in our case, the committment we made is stronger and more meaningful because it was measured and deliberate. On the other hand, if this is not the wedding your friend would have had in her 20s because she is settling\has a ticking bio clock\should have married the one that got away, there might be a bigger issue than being a bridezilla.

        The present stuff, however, is unacceptable!

    • I’ll go a little farther than some other commenters & take her side — I’m not sure I get what’s so bad about any of these comments to a close friend. They sound like a more honest POV. Plus, just about everyone I know who’s had a big wedding has had A, B, C lists.

      • Kontraktor :

        We had lists even at 30 people. We had like, the “drop dead ZOMG please be there” people and then went from there as those people cancelled. It seriously sucks beyond belief ‘prioritizing’ people to such a serious degree, but what can you do? In the end, I was grateful for everybody who came, even if some people were invited in the later ’rounds.’

  15. First Job! :

    Starting my first, real, grown-up, post-grad school job. Being a recent grad school graduate, I’m pretty (read: VERY) poor. It’s a business casual office, so I’m thinking I’ll mix skirts/pants with knit shirts and cardigans (keep a blazer in the office if I need to dress up) and stick to mostly flats and boots (I don’t have nice heels, really). If there’s anything last minute that you think I need to buy that I haven’t thought of, please feel free to suggest something and preferably add a link. The cheaper the better of course, as most of my money goes to eating and keeping a roof over my head (even with the new job). Thanks!

    • scarves! Hit up consignment shops near you and get some cheap but nice scarves.

      My office is business casual and I wear cords and cardigans mostly. I rotate through my scarf collection to keep warm/cover cleav*ge/look a little dressy. I also definitely only wear boots and oxfords. (can’t walk in heels)

    • just a lurker :

      agree with scarves. Most of mine come from Target’s clearance rack after whatever season it is, so I have a variety of colors and weights. Black pants + grey pullover sweater is a totally different outfit with each different scarf.

    • Unfortunately you may need a coat if you live somewhere temperate (we’ve had a number of posts on how a nice-looking wool coat is good since you are most likely to run into seniors and people outside your department while in the foyer/ elevator). If you can carry off men’s wear, many secondhand/ vintage stores will have a selection and prices are usually good.

  16. It’s Day 2 of Shark Week. I am tired, forgetful, not feeling well, and to top it off, I just want to cry for the next 12 hours. Any suggestions?

    • Large cup of hot tea (with honey), some Advil and some cheery but soothing music.

    • Shark Week?

      • That lovely time of the month that we all enjoy so much.

      • Otherwise known as growing roses in the lady garden. Euphemisms? We’ve got a million of them.

        Yes, we’re all grown-up overachieving chicks who are capable of saying the phrase menstrual period, but this kind of thing keeps us amused.

        • Some of us are, not too sure about me. A friend does sex education in schools and we were talking about non-hormonal birth control options (lupus + blood clots= no lovely pill for me) and I was giggling like a 13 year girl.

      • Yeah, someone here coined it as the term for the monthly time when your uterus sheds its lining. I found it amusing. Hope no offense was taken.

      • Lady Enginerd :

        I believe Aunt Flo usually comes to visit for shark week, coincidentally also when the painters are in

    • Heating pads on lower abdomen for days even Aleve can’t do a thing.

    • Buy jewelry. Always works for me.

      • e_pontellier :


      • Ablation OP :

        +1 Why did I not think of that !

        • Ablation OP :

          Without meaning to thread jack your thread jack, I just wanted to let the hive know that I did decide to do the uterine ablation that was discussed several weeks ago. It is scheduled for next week as an outpaitent procedure. Hopefully, after the 1-2 month healing period ( no pun intended), I will not be having Aunt Flo, painters, or sharks in my Lady Garden. I will report back !

          • My mom did it and she’s SO HAPPY she did (although it did jumpstart menopause for her which was fine by her; she was 50ish when she got it done). Good luck!

          • i totally want that.

    • Lol. I think of Shark Week on the Discovery Channel! I like that type of shark week. The other kind, not so much I make sure I take Advil like clockwork.

      • Regular poster in disguise :

        Every summer Discovery Communications celebrates Shark Week by decorating their headquarters building. Forget oversize vinyl banners! Just below the roof line, they hang an *enormous* /Godzilla-sized shark head on the front of their ~15-story snazzy high-rise, an equally *enormous* shark’s tail & tailfin on the back of the building, and two fins (appropriately shaped for the left and right sides of the shark) on the other two walls. I feel happy every time I see this wonderfully imaginative display.

    • This won’t help you today, but if you have a regular cycle, you can begin to plan your schedule to take that into account. Seriously. Find the tasks that require the least amount of meeting with other people and concentration, as much movement as is comfortable (to me, it feels good to move around, but I know that isn’t true for everyone) and get them on your calender on those days!

    • TO Lawyer :

      Can you leave work early and spend the evening on the couch with some trashy tv and soup?

  17. Wondering how anonymous from yesterday (who suspected her BF was cheating) is doing . . . thoughts are with you.

    • e_pontellier :

      +1. Sending good internet vibes.

    • +2

    • Anonymous :

      Thanks. I’m here. I brought it up casually last night and he swears he did not go out. He had fairly reasonable explanations for all of my “evidence.” He did kind of brush it all off and close off further discussions about it. I’m not entirely satisfied. He was kind of like, “oh god, where would I even go, what would I even do?,” which is not entirely believable. I let it blow over last night, rather than have it be a huge argument. But, I’m not sure what I’m going to do in the long run. I know I’m not crazy, but the conversation kind of made me feel like the crazy one.

      • Anonymous :

        Also, there’s obviously way, way more back story that I’m providing here (4+ years of a relationship with someone contains lots of details).

        He’s a nice and kind person and he’s very good to me. I know he loves me very much. I also deep down know he’s capable of lying to my face and capable of being sneaky. So, I have to decide if I’m willing to wonder about stuff and drive myself slightly crazy. We generally have a nice life and this is definitely not the norm. But, still…it makes me feel icky enough to have to figure out if the love part is worth it.

        • used to be you. :

          I used to be you.

          Making you feel like you’re the crazy one is classic cheater behavior. Classic classic classic.

          Being single and on your own is so so so so so much better than wondering in perpetuity whether he’s cheating, whether you can trust him, whether the good parts of your relationship are good enough to justify the ugly parts.

          Also, he’s not a “nice and kind person and very good to you” if he’s untrustworthy and cheating on you. He’s just nice and kind some of the time and very good to you some of the time. Don’t you want better than that for yourself?

          • Also, the correct response to your questions is not “oh god, where would I even go? who would i even see?”. Because those responses are evasive, don’t answer YOUR question, and are designed to make you feel like you are imagining things. They are also a liar’s way of avoiding having to lie (he can’t say “no” but he won’t say “yes” so he throws in a bunch of garbage to duck the question).

          • SF Bay Associate :

            Yep. Move to strike as nonresponsive.

          • saacnmama :

            Oof, that is an awful position to be in!

            I’ve been totally surprised by catching someone cheating (with a random woman I struck up a conversation with in the gyn office, no less!) and I’ve had suspicions confirmed. Both were awful, made me physically nauseous and I cried for days both times.

            I think the thing to ask yourself is, regardless of whether he actually *is* cheating or not, do you want a relationship where you are suspicious (assuming that’s not your nature, ordinarily)

            Good luck to you!

      • Follow your gut. It’s there for a reason and I know this. You aren’t crazy.

        • Thanks for checking back in, OP. I’m sorry to hear this, but it’s about what you expected, right? He evaded and you’re basically in the same place where you started.

          Making someone think he/she is crazy is totally unloving and disrespectful. It doesn’t even matter where he was that night. I hope you’re able to feel clear in your mind about this somehow, but I think that somehow will probably entail leaving him.

          • Anonymous :

            It is what I expected (although, I kind of expected a fight about it, too and one of the reasons there wasn’t one was because I backed off quickly). To be fair, although I know I am not in the wrong, he didn’t necessarily make me feel crazy, it was just my admittedly circumstantial evidence that made me feel crazy. One of the things wouldn’t have perked my spidey senses, but the combination of all of them seem too odd or “off” to ignore.

            Its such a gross feeling. The wondering and unsettled-ness of it all.

          • I hear you, but I still think you’re taking too much of this on yourself. I echo the Anon comment above at 1:41 pm.

  18. I know we’re not doctors but has anyone experienced fainting with migraines? I fainted last night and have a vicious headache with the nausea that normally accompanies my migraines today. I was pulled out of bed by a fire alarm but a good 20-30 minutes passed between me getting up and me hitting the floor so I’m not sure they were super related.

    • Almost There :

      I don’t mean to be alarmist but a similar thing happened to my mom and she was having an aneurysm. It was a complete emergency situation. I don’t know how to advise you other than to mention it, but I hope you’re ok.

      • Yikes! I definitely felt the migraine coming on yesterday and seem to be okay now, no blurry vision or slurred speech and am walking around and processing things just fine but if I start to feel worse, I’ll go straight to A&E.

        I just googled my meds though and they seem to cause a drop in blood pressure. Perhaps it was the adrenaline from the alarm which kept me going as I definitely felt faint within about 30 secs of the all clear.

    • I’m going to dispense my typical advice of ASK YOUR DOCTOR. Even a phone call works. Headaches + passing out = seizures in some cases. Go find out from a professional, please, preferably the one who knows about your migraines.

    • applesandcheddar :

      I’ve had migraines since I was a little kid, and I’ve sometimes fainted during them. Whenever I’ve gone to the doctor during a migraine, my blood pressure has been extremely low (and it’s low to begin with). So, that, with your meds, could do it.

      • I pass out too with my migraines. It’s usually a blessed relief because when I wake up, the migraine is gone. I’m still groggy for the rest of the day but the pain is gone.

        I asked my doctor about it and she basically didn’t believe me–she thought I was falling asleep (with migraine pain?). I live alone so no one observes me passing out and I can’t really “observe” that I’m unconscious while I’m unconscious. I’m usually in too much pain to check the clock so I could be out for 10 second, ten minutes, or an hour and a half.

      • Same situation here (migraines + generally low blood pressure). I have migraines w aura FWIW.

    • just Karen :

      At a minimum, call your doctor. That said, my migraine meds drop my blood pressure and I have dizziness. If you changed position (stood up, sat up, bent down and got back up) shortly before passing out, it’s somewhat likely that that’s the case, but it’s always worth the time to check with your doctor!

  19. hellskitchen :

    Any recommendations for holiday cards that also give back to charity? Or charities/nonprofits that sell holiday cards? I am sending these out mostly to professional contacts so need something pretty but classy. Thanks!

    • I always buy UNICEF cards if I can. They used to be sold in practically every shopping mall this time of year, but are somewhat less ubiquitous these days. Try looking at their website?

    • Children’s hospitals sometimes have card programs, although not all the artwork may be suitable for business. Item B on this list may work though. http://www.choa.org/support-childrens/give-to-childrens/more-ways-to-give/~/media/CHOA/Documents/Supporting-Childrens/Events/2012-holiday-cards-brochure.pdf
      I believe Unicef also has cards.

    • In addition to local children’s hospitals, various disease charities have cards. Is there a cause that’s important to you? That might be the place to start.

    • From your moniker, I’m guessing you’re local to NYC? The Robin Hood Foundation (robinhood dot org) has some lovely non-religious holiday cards that benefit New Yorkers in need. This is one of the many organizations doing excellent post-Sandy relief, and their board covers 100% of operating costs. Really a worthwhile charity.

    • I like the Sierra Club cards (I’d link to the site but I don’t want to get moderated!)

    • hellskitchen :

      Thanks everyone. I’ll check out the organizations. I do like the idea of giving cards from a local charity so NYNY, I’ll check out Robin Hood’s cards this year. I am a big fan of their work.

  20. Yesterday I posted about parlaying a clerkship into a job offer. I submitted my question to Ask A Manager and she answered, if anyone is interested: http://www.askamanager.org/2012/12/how-can-i-find-out-a-clearer-time-frame-from-an-employer-that-might-hire-me.html

    • That’s awesome that she answered you.

    • karenpadi :

      Nice answer! I agree with her, it’s OK to ask about the time frame but given the specific nature of small law firms, I wouldn’t expect an answer this early. FWIW, you won’t be starting in May if you are taking a Bar exam–you’d be starting in August or September at the earliest. Unless you are in Wisconsin and have diploma privilege?

      • Almost There :

        No you’re right, I don’t know why I said May but I don’t think it would change the answer that much, do you?

    • I thought you came from this site!

  21. Gifting advice needed: mother in law?

    MIL is retired, active, in her early 60s. Likes gardening and wine, likes reading. She’s really into cooking/baking, but she’s not very receptive to new recipes and she’s got a pretty well-stocked kitchen in terms of gadgets. She and FIL are those “people that have everything” and they are also sort of picky about things (meaning- they’d prefer to shop for most things themselves). Any good gift ideas?

    I can also do clothing if there were something really nice (scarf, sweater, etc), or jewelry. She typically looks like she walked off out of brooks brothers catalog if that helps with suggestions. Again- she’s retired so doesn’t have a lot of use for dressy clothes.

    • Diana Barry :

      Williams-Sonoma gift card? Or King Arthur Flour? I love getting stuff there but don’t often bc it’s expensive. Does she have a Kindle?

      • Gift card is too impersonal, unfortunately. She doesn’t have a kindle, and we’ve been tossing it around since they came out. On the one hand, she reads a ton. On the other hand, she really likes the look/feel of books.

        I have a Kindle (and love it) but don’t know that it’s a good fit for her. If it were price range appropriate, I’d get her an iPad. But it’s not really in the budget.

        • Any other siblings willing to kick in for a joint gift for the iPad? A gift card to her favorite independent bookseller – impersonal, but less so that a more generic gift ard. “Fancy” baking ingredients like expensive vanilla, cinnamon, saffron, et & fancy cupcake papers? A subscription to Martha Stewart, Real Simple or a gardening magazine?

          • blagh: no other siblings exist, we got her “fancy spices/baking stuff” a couple years ago and she still has it, she already gets RS and two gardening mags :(

      • In the Pink :

        Seconding King Arthur…their big white recipe is an amazing thing for a baker.

    • Brooks Brothers is having 40% off all cold weather & accessories today – they have really nice scarves and cashmere wraps.
      Or if you’re looking for something less expensive and she is attached to her own recipes, what about a recipe book for her to collect all of her own in? If she’s tech savvy, there are websites that do this too and will “publish” the book for her. Might be a nice way for her to collect her favorites. You could throw in some nice linen kitchen towels or something else small to complete the gift.

      • …MIL has her own recipe book and is very much attached to it. It’s about 4000 years old and falling apart, but she will her nothing about getting a new one. So this gift would go unused, despite our pleas. She’s also picky about her kitchen towels and will only use one type.

        I know this is impossible, that’s why I’m posting :). I’m thinking of going the jewelry route but am totally uninspired.

        • OK. I get it. But are you sure a computer “print” version wouldn’t work? I also have an old recipe book and am very attached to it and would never ever .. yada yada … BUT – I would consider putting all my recipes into a “book” version for the sake of future generations…

          Or, if she likes wine, what about a wine of the month club?

          Alternatively, for jewelry, I found an amazing line I am obsessed with, perhaps it would work for her: extasia.com (got as a gift last year, will be gifting from it this year).

          • She has already entered all her recipes into some online database thing (she said accses, but, it can’t be access, right?!), so i think the online recipe thing is out. She also COPIED OVER HER ENTIRE RECIPE BOOK BY HAND for DH and I on our first christmas as a couple.

          • wow. I hope you make all the recipes.

        • Patent Pending :

          I thought that the National Geographic store had a lot of pretty cool looking jewelry, and not very expensive. You could do something a little unique to spice up the brooks brothers look.

    • Sounds like you are describing my MIL! Mine is an avid walker, so for her recent birthday I bought her lululemon workout pants and she loved them! She’d never buy them for herself and they are super flattering on her. That said, now I’m officially out of ideas for this Christmas!

    • This is probably my way too practical side coming out, but I’d give her Ove Gloves (yes, the as seen on TV product). They are so much easier to use than normal kitchen mitts and they work better than even really good kitchen mitts. Finally, I think they’re safer, especially for older people, because you have more control over the hot item. I love mine—as do my mom, my grandmother, my brother’s wife, etc. etc.

      • Great suggestion!! That won’t be her only present, but she’s getting a set. We got my visually-impaired uncle them a couple years back and he RAVES about them. (Sidebar: her current oven mitts are ones she knitted in, like, the 70s. I can’t convince her to toss them but I’ll bet she likes these).

    • Harry & David fruit of the month club?

      • fluffy bunnies :

        Or a wine club?

      • In the Pink :

        Tickets to an event?

        Doesn’t have to be cooking related, although I see that Anthony Bourdain and someone else are on tour…but you have to know the audience and AB’s language! Combines travel and food.

        Symphony, opera, broadway show/musical…we enjoy enforced time out on the town and together.

        You could add a nearby restaurant if you’re worried about cost, and make it for MIL and FIL?

        • Issue with this is that we’re nowhere near MIL and FIL. So we can absolutely get them tickets, we just couldn’t really plan to attend with them unless it’s right around the holidays. We’ve looked into this before. They’re in Dallas if anybody has great suggestions?

    • Cooking class? You know, one of those where you go and drink wine and chop together? Push her out of her comfort zone with a new cuisine, or alternatively deepen her interests?

    • Mackenzie-childs watering can?

    • Wine-making class?

    • Anonymous NYer :

      I’m all about pretty stemware and glassware. Try Lolita designs (website is something like that). They have some cute kitschy painted wine glasses that I plan to get my mother and godmother for Christmas, and my sister for her 21st bday. It’s a cute addition, and can be personalized if you don’t like any of their ready-made designs.

    • I got a catalog recently from a company called Womanswork which has “garden products for women.” I am longing for a pair of some of their gardening gloves now. A nice pair of gloves and maybe a nice gardening book, or even some unusual bulbs or flowers, would be a great gift for a gardener.

      I love my kindle and my 79 year old mother finally has admitted she loves the one we got her for Mother’s Day, especially for traveling.

  22. Follow up to my post a few weeks ago about my BF who told me I’m not tight enough. Thanks to everyone for your comments, they gave me a lot to think about in moving forward.

    He really didn’t do anything to let me know he was sorry. He said he wanted to give me space and that he had ordered something for me that hadn’t come yet. A while later I asked if it had come, and he said he wasn’t sure he wanted to give it to me, so I told him he shouldn’t feel like he had to. His hesitation was for good reason, because it was a Christmas ornament with a little animal saying “I’m sorry.” I didn’t want to seem ungrateful because I was glad he’d finally done something nice for me, but… seriously? Yes, this is what I want on my tree to cherish for years to come, a trinket to remind me that you told me I’m not tight enough. You couldn’t have gotten a card or flowers that I can throw away? Or if you’re going to give me something more permanent, why doesn’t it say you care or you’re thinking of me, so I can look at it and feel happy? Not look at it and be reminded of what you were sorry for.

    One of the commenters last time I posted said we should expect our romantic partners to have a higher emotional IQ than this, and I think that really hit the mark. He just doesn’t get it. We hadn’t exchanged “I love yous” before all of this but I felt like I was pretty close to saying it, but now… I just don’t feel it. It’s sad because he’s a nice person, we have fun together, and he wants to get married, but… idk if I can get back to feeling the way I used to about him. I haven’t really come to a definite decision yet but I’m leaning pretty strongly in the JSFAMO direction. Thanks again to everyone for your support.

    • I really want to rawr out a DMTFA, even though I cringe to think it (you all have polluted me). He tried but you’re right, he doesn’t get it. Regardless of how this relationship turns out, I hope you have a rational discussion outlining the points you explained above. He needs to know exactly *how* he is a DOOSH.

      • Diana Barry :

        I agree 100%. RAWR.

      • Can someone help me pick my jaw up off my office floor.

      • +1000. Get out, and let him know why (that it was NOT because of the fact of what he said –which is what he will want to think — but of when and how he said it and then the utter lack of understanding, sensitivity or caring about you that he demonstrated.

      • Yeah I explained that, although I understood where he was coming from ([Loose] likes Christmas ornaments; I want to say I’m sorry; therefore, I will get her an I’m sorry Christmas ornament! Genious!), the purpose of an ornament is to hang on a tree and I don’t want to be reminded of a rough spot in our relationship, I want reminders of happy stuff. He acknowledged that it wasn’t a good gift, that he didn’t think it through, and the next time he visited he brought flowers.

        • e_pontellier :

          Well it seems like he definitely likes you, but it also seems like he is an emotional child. Good work speaking up for yourself and explaining why it’s offensive.
          I’m married to a man who is a CHILD emotionally. It’s exhausting. I would urge you to get out of the relationship before it gets any more serious (though I do understand not wanting to be single through the holidays), because it’s not going to get easier. Next time he’s insensitive, it will probably be about something equally offensive. It’s just not the way to spend your life. Good luck.

        • On the bright side, if you do stay together, in 10 years it might make for a laugh every time you put it up on the tree. Otherwise, toss it.

      • SF Bay Associate :



    • I am so sorry this happened to you. I would feel the exact same way staring at that ornament year after year. My ex was also bad at talking through problems we had and thought that all would be cured with a thoughtful gift or even just sex- which he mistook for intimacy. It was never enough because in the end, the problems were never resolved. Sending you hugs.

    • This sounds like a terrible situation, and I’m so sorry you’re in it. This dude is thoughtless at best and cruel at worst, and it seems like you just aren’t that into him anymore, which is totally understandable. Good luck with whatever course of action you decide to take.

      • springtime :

        Yup, couldn’t agree more. There are so many things wrong with how he handled this I don’t even want to go into it.

        It’s not just being innocent and clueless- to me, it sounds like he really just does.not.care. Do you want to love someone who doesn’t care about you? I wouldn’t. Even the fact that he ordered something that would take weeks to arrive is ridiculous.

    • e_pontellier :

      {{{hugs}}} This is such a bummer. Drinks sometime? I’m in NYC.

      • Aww, thanks, I’m far away in no man’s land though =(. I have a pedicure and drinks scheduled for this weekend though.

    • DUDE. DTMFA. JSAMO. He was going to give you a CHRISTMAS ORNAMENT with I’m sorry on it?! Sorry for the Ellen caps, but I JUST CAN’T EVEN WHAT THE JUSTIN BIEBER FONDUE.

      • I was so exercised, I forgot the F in JSFAMO.

        • This guy took my breath away. And not in a good way.

          • I thought the timing/delay on the gift was manipulative, too. I think he wants a lock on you at least until after Xmas. Just like I thought his timing in saying what he said during the LGP was manipulative and vindictive. Run girl run!

      • Research, Not Law :

        THIS! RAWR!!!

    • …yeah. There is a big lack of emotional maturity there. While it probably explains why the entire issue you had during the LGP came up (he didn’t see why it was offensive), it is a good indicator that you should JSFAMO

    • Okay, I had to google “I’m sorry ornament,” and this is all I could find:

      * http://www.cafepress.com/+i’m-sorry+ornaments

      * http://www.zazzle.com/im_sorry_christmas_ornaments-175174815101061830

      I am now even more horrified. D. T. M. F. A.

    • My links are in moderation but google “I’m sorry ornament.” Only ones I could find are at Cafe Press and Zazzle, and they. are. horrifying. in this context.

      • Loose, gift this right back at him http://www.cafepress.com/+sorry_doesnt_work_for_me_anymore_oval_ornament,57517435

        • Omg, this is amazing.

        • How about getting two ornaments, one for each of you, that say JSFAMO? (I’m sure you can make them on zazzle of cafe press.) That way he’ll get the message and you’ll have an ornament that you can look and be reminded of this important piece of wisdom every year.

      • It’s the one from Zazzle with the little bear/mouse/dog/whatever. If it didn’t look sad and if it weren’t holding an I’m sorry banner it’d be kind of cute.

    • Sidebar: what company came up with an “I’m Sorry” Christmas ornament?!

    • has he ever dated anyone before? And had to apologize? I can only imagine what girlfriends of years past have gotten.

    • Did you tell him the ornament wasn’t big enough? I’m really really really really sorry. That is a pretty low thing to hear.

    • OMG. I was totally terrified reading this that the present was a “personal toy” and still somehow I think the ornament is worse.

      I think you know what to do, and you are in the process of giving yourself permission to do it. FWIW, you have mine, plus some internet hugs from strangers on the internet.

    • Your situation is terrible but your description of the ornament and his sheepishness about it made me laugh (and probably will make you laugh too, at some point). In addition to his stupidity buying this thing, who was the genius who decided to create it?

      But again, I’m really sorry. Whatever you decide, I hope you’ll feel better soon.

    • karenpadi :

      Oh my goodness. You deserve better.

    • Thanks, everyone, I love this community.

      • I’m going to be the lone dissenter and say I don’t think the whole ornament thing is that terrible. I see his thought process as this: I want her to see I’m sorry –> buying presents can be a way of showing someone you’re sorry –> what’s a good present to buy? it’s Christmastime so ornaments are good presents –> sorry + ornament = sorry ornament. I bet it never entered his head to go the next step and say “well, what do you do with an ornament? hang it on a tree to admire for years and years.” (This final step would never occur to my husband. He and his brother bought a bright red ornament for their mother one year — recently — because it was from her favorite shop and red is for Christmas. They never stopped to think that her living room is all in pinks and soft blues.) I see this as him putting effort into doing something to show he’s sorry. Yes, a sorry ornament is kind of a sucky thing, but the point was really the effort, not the outcome.

        • Meg Murry :

          The optimist in me was hoping this was the case as well. Not that he’s trying to be a doosh, but rather that he’s really really clueless and is only digging himself a deeper hole. Any chance he’s one of those slightly nerdy guys who’s never really had a girlfriend and therefore sometimes tries to do the right thing and only makes it worse? That said, he’s obviously hurt you pretty badly, even if he didn’t mean to – you would be perfectly reasonable to move on and not take on the hassle of “training” him to be a more thoughtful boyfriend, as he’ll probably have more not-quite-intentional screwups coming in the future. No one should have to stay with a doosh, even if he’s a clueless doosh as opposed to a cruel intentional doosh

          • It’s definitely a cluelessness issue, and I’m positive that the way TBK explained it is exactly his thought process. His inexperience has bought him a lot of leeway with me and I’ve been very patient with him through more than just this one incident, but now I’m at the point that I’m becoming emotionally detached because I never know where the next inadvertently hurtful comment or action is going to come from. TBK (or anyone else), do you have pointers for how to be with someone who’s kind of clueless? How do I avoid taking it personally when he does something that seems so obviously thoughtless to most people but that just didn’t occur to him? Is this something that can change over time or is it just his personality?

          • I don’t know about the inexperience argument. That might work if he were, say, 21. But I’m guessing he’s older than that and should have the basics of respect and common courtesy down pat. Grown men should not need to be trained. At the very least, he should at least take some responsibility for his behavior, and it really doesn’t sound like he’s doing that.

          • karenpadi :

            Loose, I’ve talked here before about my ex who didn’t “know” how to clean the kitchen. That was a symptom of a bigger problem–he didn’t “know” how to be in an adult relationship.

            I tried training him; I tried nagging him; I tried talking about why I felt disrespected; I labeled behaviors as “dealbreakers”; I even threw in some emotional meltdowns for good measure. Things would change for two or three days and then we’d be back at the beginning. 18 months in, he left a dripping wet towel on my side of the bed and I knew it was over.

            I think people learn how to be in a relationship by going through failed relationships. So I think he will change over time but only because his relationship with you failed.

    • I told Professor Bhaer about this and his comment included the words “needle-d*ck”. We are outraged and RAWR-ing on your behalf.

    • +1 to what everyone else said, plus I cannot believe that he wants to get married to you but has not said “I love you” yet. I don’t think he knows what love is.

  23. Almost There :

    I’m just gonna say it – DTMFA

    • Someone actually makes a Christmas ornament that says ” I’m sorry” ? Godo grief. I know that’s the least of OPs problems, but I just can’t get over that. I say FIDO him. ( Forget it, Drive on).

    • +1. You deserve much, much better. This was a completely “low EQ” response to a horrifically “low EQ” statement. He can take his problematic gardening tools elsewhere. [I’m going to spare you a rant about how it is SO NOT A PROBLEM WITH YOU because I will get way too fired up.]

  24. applesandcheddar :

    My office has this really bizarre (IMHO) tradition of giving little gifts to everyone. Each person will buy presents for everyone else around the holidays and drop them at people’s desks in the morning. Things like candles, towels, soap, candies, etc. When I was new, I participated, but I really don’t want to anymore, as I think it’s sort of weird, awkward, stressful, and also inappropriate. I also know I’m not the only one who feels this way. So, if I just don’t give gifts to people, am I a bad coworker?

    • I agree that it’s weird, but how many people are we talking, and what are you going to have to spend? If it’s nuisance value, I might just suck it up and do it.

      • applesandcheddar :

        There are 10 people in my office. I work in the government, so ethically/legally gifts cannot be more than $10.

        • I was in the toy aisles at Walmart the other day. They have a bunch of stocking-stuffer type things that are $1 or $2 a piece. Think Silly Putty and the like. Could you do a “fun” theme and do that?

          • This. “Retro Toy” theme.

          • Also Oriental Trading has cheap stocking-stuffer type stuff. You can get 12 holiday rubber duckies for $5. Boom.

            This of course is all assuming that your office is not Very Serious.

          • Anyone who gave me Silly Putty for Christmas wins in my book.

          • Herbie, why aren’t you working in my office and gifting me holiday rubber duckies?

          • Lottery tickets. And maybe a chocolate holiday-themed piece of candy.

        • Get everyone the same thing. I would go with a small box of chocolates. You could repeat it next year and it could be your thing.

        • Meg Murry :

          Are ALL your coworkers into gifts, or is there just one or two really enthusiastic people that organize it and everyone else goes along? Spending $100 on “stuff” just to go home with $100 of “stuff” would personally drive me crazy. Are there one or two other people that you know feel the same way you do that would be willing to opt out of exchanging with you? That way you would go from 10 gifts to 7 or 8 and maybe less every year?
          Otherwise I would definitely go with either edible or fun thing to keep at my desk like Silly Putty or mini slinkies. I wouldn’t worry about picking out just the right gift for each person unless you really enjoy shopping & giving gifts.

      • I’m with Herbie on this. I’d just buy a dozen cupcakes and hand one out to each person and call it good.

    • e_pontellier :

      Is there a way to turn this into an event everyone can enjoy? Like an office happy hour where everyone pitches in a certain amount? Or a lunch? This just sounds miserable to me and if you know there are other people who aren’t interested, maybe you can wrangle your office into a new tradition. Even a secret santa (or, “secret holiday gift exchange” as we called it at my old law firm) would be less annoying, IMO.

      • applesandcheddar :

        That’s the best part… we are also doing a holiday lunch where we are doing a white elephant gift exchange. My coworkers are really into the gifts it seems.

        • e_pontellier :

          Oh g-d. Good luck. Sounds like everyone likes each other, so that’s good, right?

    • Mine too! I hate, hate, hate it! It’s hard enough covering all of the family and teacher gifts, plus 2 work secret santas, plus reciprocating a dozen other co-workers – ugh! I”ll be the one up at midnight putting candy into tiny gift bags for everyone. Makes me very Scrooge-y.

    • just a lurker :

      Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office aside, I’d just bake a ton of cookies and send an email to everyone to let them know they’re in the break room on the gifting day.

  25. I missed the original post and am not entirely clear on what he meant about you not being “tight” enough, but I’ll just say that if you’re not feeling it you’re not feeling it. But I also think that both you and “Almost There” are being awfully harsh. He gave you space after he realized he hurt you. He found a gift that he thought would be a nice way to say he was sorry. And your response is to criticize the gesture, and wish he’s given you something disposable instead? Aren’t we women overly sensitive and picky with our men sometimes? Honestly, I can be the same way with my man, but sometimes I can hardly blame the poor guy for not knowing how to respond in *exactly the way* I wish he would.

    • Ordinarily, I’d agree with you. But during the midst of ladygarden party times, he said she was “too loose”. Like, anatomically speaking. Besides the fact that he was so so soooooooooooooo DOOSHY to say something like that, he also doesn’t think it was a big deal. He should be groveling. He is not. The end, in my book.

      • Oh, my, that *is* dooshy. Maybe the real problem is that he’s too small?

        • I think it’s likely a death grip problem, I’ve been with guys smaller than him and they’ve always seemed happy.

          I take your initial point, though, and I felt really guilty about criticizing it but I also felt it was important to explain why the gift was… misguided… given his general empathy problems. I suggested that he write a nice message on a post-it to cover up the “I’m sorry” and handed him some colorful post-its, but he didn’t write a message.

          • GirlMeetsWorld :

            Don’t feel guilty! The fact that he hesitated in giving you such an awful “apology” and then went ahead with it indicates a real lack of understanding, imo.

          • ugh. Death Grip–the bane of my LGPs. Why do guys tell themselves they aren’t affected by it? They so obviously are.

          • SV in House :

            “Death Grip” — I learn so much on this site (thanks to googling)!

          • Anonforthis :

            As a side note, I think I ran into a problem with the “death grip” last night during a LGP. I can’t really replicate that unfortunately, despite all my efforts…

          • Sorry SV! Warning: “Death Grip” may be NSFW.

        • springtime :

          Also, she had a conversation with him the night before the incident about wanting him to show more feelings, show he cares about her more, etc (he wasn’t very affectionate as far as I remember). This was the way he decided to express that.

        • That’s the consensus here.

    • Almost There :

      I went to lunch so I missed this comment, but I will just say that I have been following the story since she first told it, so I knew the background and how much this guy sucked. That is not my normal response to these things, and I do think it is sometimes a conclusion we jump to too quickly on this site.

    • Break up with him. Who says that to someone he’s dating? Everyone with any sense or empathy knows not to criticize their partner’s bits and pieces. It’s hurtful and is a red flag for personality flaws.

  26. Update re empty apartment guy? :

    Momentsofabsurdity, was it you who was seeing empty apartment guy?

    After hearing about Loose’s terrible experiences (I am in the DTMFA camp), I think we need a pick-me-up. How is it going? He sounded so lovely.


    • momentsofabsurdity :

      That was me! It is going great actually – I’m really starting to fall for him. This is a little scary and heady and exciting all at the same time. He’s the first person I’ve dated that’s open to talking about things like The Future, how much he likes me, etc etc. It scares me because while I know I’d be okay now if it ended, I think we’re rapidly heading into territory where if he pulls the plug, I’m going to be a bit wrecked. But it also feels great to be with someone who I really like, who I think is really interesting and smart and I’m really attracted to. So I am trying to curb my inner crazy person and just enjoy it as it happens.

      It was my birthday a couple weeks ago, and he remembered that I had mentioned on our first date (2-3months ago?) that my roommate in college had a pair of LL Bean Wicked Good slippers and I had always been jealous/stolen them whenever I went to use the bathroom. He got me a pair for my birthday! It was super sweet, especially because I wasn’t expecting him to get me anything (we are pretty early in the relationship so I would have been fine with a card/taking me to dinner). He also got me a dumb, cheesy card but hey, he’s a boy.

      I am currently trying to decide on Christmas gifts for him. It’s a triple whammy because Christmas, then his birthday in early February, then Valentine’s Day… it’s just a lot. So I’m trying to think of lots of good gift ideas for him. I’m thinking maybe tickets to a comedy show + a Charlie Card with some money on it (as sort of a joke – he always talks about how stupid he feels with the paper tickets) + something that I can wrap up since I always feel awkward just handing over an envelope.

      Next weekend, we’re going to the aquarium together then going ice skating and getting hot chocolate in the evening. I feel like I’m living in a Katherine Heigl movie.

      • springtime :

        “I feel like I’m living in a Katherine Heigl movie.” That’s so cute!

      • anon in-house :

        So sweet! Enjoy the ride…

      • Regular poster in disguise :

        Thanks for the good news! Enjoy.

      • That WAS the pick me up we all needed. You might also be living in a Taylor Swift song.

        • So, so this. Glad everything is still going so well, it’s nice to know there are still good ones out there!

      • just Karen :

        I LOVE it that he got you those slippers! Thoughtful and attentive…I want more stories like this!

  27. Reposting due to moderation: Corporettes, please help! I bought some boots that extend a few inches above my ankles and I wore them for the first time yesterday. I love how they look and feel, but as I walked around they started pressing on the front part of my shins and causing them pain. Is there anything I can do about this problem? I think thick knee-high socks might help (if I can find them), but am otherwise at a loss. I never bought boots this height before…

    • I had this happen to me and the boots never got better. I wore them a bunch to try to get them to stretch out and no luck. Sorry!

  28. giving back :

    What are your favorite charities? I usually give to a few different ones around this time of year, and it can be hard to narrow it down with so many good causes to choose from. I always like to add a new one to the list to mix it up a bit, and I figured the r e t t e ‘s would have suggestions.

    • I like to donate to a mix of local and national/international charities, so I donate to Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and the ACLU, plus a local food bank, an org that does comprehensive services for low income people, and a clinic aimed at LGBT people but provides low-cost healthcare for anyone. I have experience with each of these organizations and trust the work they do in the community. (For DC people these are the Capitol Area Food Bank, Bread for the City, and Whitman-Walker Clinic.)

      More broadly, I decide where to give based on what news stories are upsetting me. For example, when I read stories about law-makers trying to limit reproductive rights, and I feel upset, I give to Planned Parenthood. It makes me feel less helpless and directs my money to causes I really care about.

    • CARE. They do great work focussed on women and girls (because money that goes to women and girls goes further, apparently).

    • I only consistently donate to Doctors Without Borders and the Wikimedia foundation.

    • Kontraktor :

      We like to give to things we utilize. We use the airport lounges with the USO very frequently and they offer a lot to deployed troops (my husband has gotten some of the benefits sometimes from their endeavors). We also like to donate to the PBS/classical music stations we watch/listen to for hours a day. We donated to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia one year because we had a friend whose child received great care there. So, things like that which we benefit from and enjoy and thus feel we should contribute towards.

    • K...in transition :

      Royal Family Productions is at the top of my list and is small enough to be in major need (they teach theater to low-income youth on a pay-what-you-can scale), also Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS

      • K...in transition :

        Also, the Ali Forney Center is in MAJOR need… they lost everything in the hurricane

    • Wounded Warriors. I also support a local horse rescue: http://equinerescuecenter.com/index.html.

    • Research, Not Law :

      Ronald McDonald House
      World Fistula Foundation
      Red Cross
      Mercy Corps
      Local PBS station
      Local Classical radio station
      Local food bank
      Local organization that assists children in foster care system

    • SpaceMountain :

      I like to mix it up with my company’s charity drive. I usually do something for women’s rights (Planned Parenthood), an environmental one, something for children, and something for illness research (cancer, hearing loss, diabetes, etc.). We have a big catalog and I pick from those categories. Sometimes I have my children pick, and then the selections are eclectic — usually saving animals or books for poor children.

    • We mostly focus on local charities, especially around the holidays. Our family donates to the local food bank and to a toy drive for underprivileged children. Other times of the year, we donate to a local women’s shelter, our PBS affiliate and the ALS Association and American Heart Association in honor of family members.

    • Anonymous :

      Peace Corps Partnership. You contribute to a project a volunteer is doing in partnership with his/her community. You can pick a project type/ area of the world that has special resonance to you, there’s zero overhead, and because the community has to contribute 25%, you know it’s something they want and will use. Last year I contributed to a maternity ward in South America, this year its a girls leadership camp in West Africa.


  29. wow, i love this dress… this is the dress that my imaginary self with a life that actually requires the wearing of lots of suits and sheath dresses would have… sigghhhh

  30. Travel Insurance :

    DH and I are thinking of taking a vacation to his home state in January. Tickets are under $200 per person, incl. fees and taxes, which is much less than we usually pay to travel to this destination. DH is also interviewing for a cross-country job next week. We don’t think it’s so likely that he will get it, but if he does, January may not be the best time to be traveling for a week. I am inclined to get the tickets nonetheless, possibly with travel insurance or some sort of cancellation right. Have corpor*tt*rs done this, and is it worth the money (especially for a relatively inexpensive flight)? If it helps, we would fly Delta. Thanks for any advice!

    • Most cheap travel insurance add-ons don’t cover optional cancellation, only cancellation due to things like sudden illness, car accidents, etc., and it’s really a pain to provide the necessary documentation to get your money back. But different airlines have different refund/change of ticket policies. I’m not sure of Delta’s policy, but make sure to check, and consider flying on a different airline if they don’t allow easy changes or refunds.

    • just a lurker :

      anytime I’ve cancelled a flight, the airline has given me a credit in that amount of the cancelled flights. Check with Delta to see if they do that too. You can use the credit toward the purchase of future travel plans.

  31. Travel insurance can cost about $40 per ticket, and can usually only be used if you get a doctor’s note saying you’re too ill to travel, or something like that. Read the terms of the insurance first to make sure you could even use it. It might not be worth the money. You might just prefer to risk losing the $400 instead in the worst case scenario.

    Another thought is that even if he gets the job, it’s not that unreasonable — after he gets the offer — to say that he already has nonrefundable tickets for a week in January, and to postpone the start date until afterwards, or take a week of unpaid leave if he absolutely has to start earlier, or ask the employer to let him use a week of vacation time even if it normally wouldn’t have accrued yet … whichever of these makes the most sense.

    • A slight correction: you can buy “cancel for any reason” insurance, it just costs more. There’s also “cancel because I have to work” insurance, but you have to be willing to ask your employer to sign an affidavit stating that you’re required to work, which can be delicate.

      (Sadly, I am a frequent purchaser of “cancel for any reason” insurance.)

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