Splurge Monday’s Workwear Report: Tie-Neck Long-Sleeve Blouse

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

I absolutely love the pink coat that’s featured as part of this outfit, but at $11,000 for a frayed coat, it’s even a bit much for me. Instead we’re featuring this $1,490 hammered silk blouse (actually a viscose/silk blend). I’ve seen a lot of pussy bow or tie-neck blouses lately (and Melania Trump got a lot of press for the pussy bow blouse she wore to a debate), and they’re definitely having a moment. I haven’t seen this kind of to-the-side look and I really like it; it kind of reminds me of some of Veronica Palmer’s blouses in Better Off Ted and would look interesting under a suit. Tie-Neck Long-Sleeve Blouse (scroll down)

A couple of other asymmetrical tie-neck blouses with slightly lower prices are here and here. This one is significantly less expensive, as is this one in plus sizes.

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  1. I thought this was a beautiful pajama set before reading the description…

  2. LondonLeisureYear :

    An article about lularoe’s leggings horrible quality which some might find interesting:

    Also a funny/informative John Oliver video about MLMs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s6MwGeOm8iI

    • I’ve never had a problem with the quality of my LLR leggings, but I recently wore my Zella leggings for the first time in forever (found them when I cleaned out my closet!) and omg the Zella quality is sooo much better!

    • That list of “helpful tips”?! “Keep a separate LuLaRoe laundry basket” Do they think they’re made of priceless silk? What on earth?

  3. Anonymous4 :

    Today is my anniversary. My SIL just posted a photo on social media from our wedding to wish us a happy anniversary. I wasn’t in the photo. Seriously. She used a photo of my husband with his family.

    I’m trying to give the benefit of the doubt – but I’m seriously annoyed.

    • Anonymous :

      Happy Anniversary!

      Super annoying!

    • Anonymous :

      Pls strive to be the kind of person who does not see or notice FB drama because you are not 12. FB prob reminded her of that photo because she was in it and just reposted. She wished you a happy anniversary!

      • Anonymous4 :

        As I said – I’m trying to give the benefit of the doubt. Consider me striving.

        • OK, If you ARE 12 (or even 17) you COULD pick a random background feature in the photo and tag yourself in it. That way you would be satisfied, you still wouldn’t be in the photo, and the sister-in-law would see it. Just an itsy-bitsy idea. From a revenge maven.

      • Not to speak for the OP but it seems like her SIL posted the photo herself, not a facebook memories thing. I dont know her history with the SIL but I’d be hurt too, even if it wasnt deliberate….

        • Oh jeez. Maybe it was the only picture she had? Or maybe the photo reminded her of what a great time she had celebrating the wedding?

    • I would let this one go.

    • Let me guess. SIL is in the photo she posted and she looks awesome?

      • Legally Brunette :

        LOL. This! Really annoying on her part but this could be the reason.

      • +1. And what’s with the posts where women wish happy birthday to their BFFs and but really just use it as a chance to repost a picture of themselves (non-birthday person) from their wedding? I.e., “Here’s a picture of me looking my best and reminding everyone that I WAS A BRIDE! Oh, and here’s the birthday girl in some hideous dress I made her wear! Love you bunches!”

    • OMG.

      People on here are like a bunch of rappers (but re Facebook drama), going on about how you have been disrespected and getting all crazy. Just let it go!

      • No need to bring the rap wars into this.

        • It’s like that, no? “I feel publicly disrespected and my feelings are hurt; now what am I going to do about that to state my feelings and seek revenge.”

          OK, maybe without those last 3 words. Or with less firepower.

          Just throw ya money at SIL and leave with yo posse.

    • I will tell you a little anecdote. My mom has three siblings. The only big wedding was her little brother’s. At the wedding, everyone was dressed up and looked nice and there was a professional photographer. So the four siblings posed for a photo together with their parents, and it came out great. Except for the groom they all still have this photo on a wall in their homes.

      It turns out the bride has been secretly nursing hurt feeling about this for years. From her point of view, this was a photo of her wedding that didn’t include her and it was the only photo everyone hung up. From the siblings’ point of view it was just the only nice photo they had of their immediate family.

      My point is, maybe assume good intentions? Maybe it was thoughtless but not intended to be hurtful.

      (By the way, the people in this story are all in their seventies now and the hurt feelings rage on!)

      • +1million

      • Anon for this cause I have 50 cousins... :

        Yup. My mom was baby of ten. At her wedding they took a picture of the parents and all the siblings, no spouses. I think it ended up being the last picture of them all alive together.

        Several of her siblings have it on their wall/display.

        Sounds like there is some other issues in your relationship?

    • To paraphrase from one of Carrie Fisher’s books:

      you are drinking poison and hoping that other people die

      Stop it! Enjoy your anniversary and move on.

    • Definitely annoying. Definitely worth venting about on the internet to strangers. When did every other anonymous person around here get so high and mighty?

      • Oil in Houston :


      • Anon in NYC :

        Seriously! I would be annoyed too. Not annoyed enough to say anything, but still irritated that it was a post about my anniversary with a photo from my wedding that didn’t also feature me.

      • Thank you!! No one is saying she needs to give her a talking to and cut off ties. Maybe these anons dont spend any time at all on social media but this is completely a normal thing to feel stung by. Not glaringly mad but stung/hurt is NORMAL. geez…

      • Cosign! We all let things get under our skin that we know we should let go sometimes. Don’t we all have that one person in our lives that is super passive aggressive via social media? I’m guessing OP doesn’t behave this way at all herself, but you can tell sometimes when a petty person is taking a dig at you. Rolling my eyes over here in solidarity, OP.

  4. I’m sorry, but what the actual F is going on with this outfit? NO.

  5. Anonymous :

    When you’re job-searching, and you’ve been job-searching for a year, and you’re doing ok at your current job (despite the toxic environment), what helps you get through the day? What helps you stay focused? What helps you stay positive about your current job (with the toxic environment) so that you can bring joy, not bitterness, to a job interview?

    • Anonymous4 :

      This was me.

      I leaned way out. I did my job and that was it. It was the only way to survive the toxic environment. I kept my head down, focused on doing my tasks as well as I could, and used my work days to develop skills that would make me attractive to a new employer. I tried to think of my current job as training for something better – not applying myself meant rusty skills that wouldn’t present well in a new work environment. I thought of it like a case study of what I did not want in my next job.

      I wasn’t overly positive about my current job when interviewing elsewhere. When asked about it, I talked about learning how I function as an employee, and how I had advanced as far as I could in my company – it allowed me to be grateful for the job I had. I framed it as “I’ve learned all I can here and I’m in need of XYZ to truly become excellent in my field.”

    • Oh, dear. Been there.

      A few things. First, it is important to have a trusted work bestie that you can vent to at lunchtimes. Second, make a ritual (or three) to get you through the work day–say, tea or coffee or hot chocoate if you make it to 11am, a quick walk downstairs if you make it to 4pm, etc. I also used to give myself a treat of a Friday AM bagel (only Fridays!) to celebrate that I made it through the week. Last, try your very darndest to leave your emotional energy re toxic workplace at work, so you don’t bring it home with you, you don’t stew on it, etc.

      When I really hate my job, I imagine my bank account without a paycheck coming in, and then I am very grateful for what I have, even if it is hard. I remember how hard it is to be unemployed and looking, and worried about my finances too. Also, I try to practice gratitude by remember that even if the people I work with are awful, I am not in ill health, I am safe, I am loved by my close ones. I try to tell myself that I am gaining skills even if it doesn’t feel like it, and that I am learning every day.

      Re the job interview, you need to simply practice speaking about your job in a positive light with a neutral friend. Repeat, repeat, repeat until you can sound upbeat and have a few sound bytes about what you’ve learned, what you hope to gain in new position vis a vis old position, what projects you worked on/how you added value to your team. Have a few stories about “things you’d change” that are minor, such as “streamlining processes” or other such non-lies. You really just need to separate your actual feelings from what is keeping you from getting a job. They are two different things. You need to work on your acting, until you seem like a positive, happy employee that someone else would want on their team. A neutral friend can coach you until you get there.

      Good luck–I know this is hard.

      • +1 to the reward strategy

        I would also suggest figuring out what in your life can take a backseat so that you can engage in more self-care (so that you come across as more upbeat in interviews but also to maintain your own motivation to get through work by having things to look forward to outside of work). That could mean hiring help for cleaning the house so that you can spend time on a recharging hobby/regularly attend a yoga class or spending a weekend making freezer meals so that you can relax with a book after work instead of making dinner. Figure out what the most annoying aspect of your non-work life is and see if you can temporarily throw money at or otherwise take care of it so that you have less negativity outside of work.

        I’m having a tough time at my job too, and one thing I’m doing is making time to see friends on the weekend. I work long hours and thought that trying to catch up on sleep during the weekends should be my main priority. While that’s still important, I found that spending all weekend in my apartment “recuperating” made me feel lonely and only exacerbated the negativity I was experiencing at work. Now, I’m willing to lose one day of sleeping in to be surrounded by the positive energy I get from my friends.

        Good luck and hang in there!

    • I rehearse in my head for upcoming job interviews, thinking about how I can frame my current job in a way that will help me. For example, I think of how I can answer the question “Why are you leaving your current job?” in a way that is not “because I HAAATE it”. Or I think about questions about describing a challenging time, and how I want to be able to describe myself as rising above a toxic environment.

      Essentially, I recraft my work narrative in my head from being pure misery to being something that I am learning from and rising above. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn’t. But being able to change the stories I tell myself about myself has been critical to feeling OK in tough situations.

    • I was searching for a government job during a long hiring freeze. I didn’t hate my job but it wasn’t where I wanted to be. It helped me to reframe my expectations. Once I started thinking of my current job as temporary, I let myself lean out and put much less pressure on myself.

    • I feel your pain. I’m there right now. To get through the day, I try to divide the time into hour-long chunks and dedicate each one to a specific task.
      Second Anon at 9:49 about practicing your interview responses. “Fake it ’til you make it.” But seriously, the narrative we tell ourselves does so much to color our perception of the world around us. Find a way to re-write your story so that you are persevering and overcoming obstacles, rather than being a victim/stuck in a lousy situation.

    • When this was me, I focused on how grateful I was to have a job, even if I needed a new one desperately. From my perspective my situation would be much more dire if I was unemployed. Also I leaned out, as others suggested, WAY out. I went to yoga a lot, sometimes in the middle of the day during my lunch hour. I cooked a lot. I read a lot. I tried to get all of my appointments, (doctors appointments and what not) taken care of so I wouldn’t have to deal with it once I got a new job. Leaning out and knowing its temporary can be great!

  6. Zella leggings :

    FYI bought Zella high waist leggings and while they are cute, the waist just keeps rolling over/flipping. Very uncomfortable! Like Lucy much better.

    • Anon in NYC :

      Zella leggings don’t stay up on me. The handful of leggings that I have are good for workouts where I don’t have to jump a lot. I prefer Athleta or Lululemon.

      • Agreed. Glad to hear that someone else has this problem. They are big at the waist!

        • I have this problem with all high waisted leggings and really want this trend to die. I can’t workout comfortably with 2 inches of fabric crumpled up to my waist!

        • On the other hand, I like Zella leggings because they are the only ones that aren’t too small in the waist and too big in the rear. Athleta and Lululemon are designed for curvy girls. Zella has a straighter fit.

      • cake batter :

        I bought some Costco (Kirkland brand) leggings on a whim last weekend, because hey, they were $16! And why the heck not! Turns out they have this hidden drawstring setup inside the waistband, so I can tighten them and keep them from sliding down. I’ve never seen this fabulous witchcraft on any other leggings in my life, but of course, when I went back this weekend to buy 10,000 more pairs, they only had this blue pattern that resembled a mermaid tail (and not even in my size). Just PSA in case anyone makes a Costco run anytime soon. I think they’re labeled as “active pants” – HA. Active with the remote on Netflix…

    • A fitness forum recommended Victoria Sport’s high-waisted leggings and, while I’m usually skeptcical of VS products, they’re honestly amazing. The even have inseam length options. Love love love them.

  7. WWYD pest edition :

    If you are in the middle of a LGP and something catches your eye and that something is a giant cockroach that is moving at an alarming clip, WWYD?

    [Like fashion on a long weekend bender in Las Vegas, there may be no right or wrong answer here. But OMG I was not prepared for that.]

    If this is what global warming means, I am going to go out and buy a Prius on my way home.

    • Anonymous :

      Stop, kill the bug, resume.

    • I would stop the party! But roaches are one thing I just can’t stand. My husband and brother make fun of me for having a special roach scream. The roach scream would be very recognizably different from anything belonging in a LGP.

    • Scream and do my best not to injure my partner as I jump out of the bed.

    • Stop, wait for my big, strong, brave boyfriend to finish shrieking and sprinting into another room, kill bug, give him sh*t for being a big baby, resume.

    • What does LGP stand for?

    • Shriek instantly, grab the nearest object with which to smash and kill the cockroach and vault myself at the cockroach, which would leave my husband momentarily confused but I hate cockroaches with an unrivaled passion. As a child, I had one crawl across the ceiling and drop into my bed as I was reading a book one night. I seriously wore socks tucked into pjs and gloves tucked into the shirt to sleep for months in the deep south in the summer. It is but one of many reasons I love New England — cockroaches here are tiny and do not resemble the prehistoric mammoths found in the deep south.

    • Never too many shoes... :

      Scream and then use husband’s body as human shield, possibly wounding him in the process. Then take a decontamination shower, search every corner of my room and likely have a large glass of wine. Definitely no resumption of activities.

      • Sydney Bristow :

        If it was one of those giant waterbugs and was on the bed, then absolutely this.

        If it was just a normal sized roach I’d likely shriek from the shock, my husband would kill it, then we’d resume.

    • Ignore it.

      Set up roach motels and homemade borax “poison” balls in hiding places…… later.

  8. Minimalist kitchen :

    I just moved into a new apartment and don’t want to buy too many new items because of limited counter space especially. One of the things I am having to do without is a microwave. I have been warming up leftovers on the stove top and on one occasion the oven. I’m trying to put together a list of items to get which includes a pot or two. (I currently have a hand me down pot and skillet). For tea and coffee I have an electric kettle and a French press. What items would you consider getting for a minimalist but functional kitchen? Most of my meals are comprised of rice and some kind of stew, and sometimes flatbreads like Indian chapati or naan. When I do cook meat it’s chicken or fish baked in the oven.

    • Anonymous :

      A rice cooker and a Dutch oven, with your menu. Two good cutting boards. A big knife and a small knife.

      • I have to disagree about the rice cooker (but agree with everything else). I get that they make cooking rice so easy, but they are a 1-function appliance that takes up room. You can easily make rice with a regular pot. If anything, I would get an Instant Pot, which can do rice in addition to stews and a ton of other things. But I still don’t know if I would have an Instant Pot if my kitchen was super minimalist.

        I would have a few pots that can nest inside each other, and the same with pans. Several wooden spoons. Fish spatula (my favorite tool ever). Nesting mixing/prep bowls.

        • More advanced rice cookers (e.g. Zojirushi) are actually quite versatile. Also, if the OP has rice nearly every day, the convenience rice cookers provide may outweigh the space concerns.
          I agree with Anonymous at 9:44. I have a large, fully-equipped kitchen and eat meals similar to what OP mentioned. I use my Lodge pot and rice cooker more than everything else.

          • Have a used, small Zoji and I love it (and its charming alert songs) to death. I’ve heard mixed things about rice in the Instant Pot, though would love to hear more reviews from fellow Asians/other picky rice-eaters.

          • I think the InstaPot makes terrible rice. It always ends up mushy, possibly because there’s no moisture sensor like you would have on a rice cooker. We got rid of our rice cooker when we got an instapot and now I make rice on the stove.

        • Sydney Bristow :

          I tried to make really good Japanese rice this weekend and followed instructions that I found and successfully used several years ago. Then I proceeded to totally misread the instructions and wound up cooking 4 cups of rice with 1.75 cups of water. It did not go well. Thankfully I didn’t ruin my pot!

          For the OP, I’d also add a baking sheet of some kind. Just one would be fine. You could use it for leftovers if they reheat better in the oven, under the flatbreads you mentioned, etc. I really like my Nordicware pan and Silpat liner, but you could just get something inexpensive.

          I lived without a microwave for several years with a super tiny kitchen and I second the recommendation for glass pyrex-type dishes for leftovers. You can get the ones that have lids for the fridge and then just pop them in the oven (without the lid) to reheat.

          • These are the best instructions (in English) that I’ve come across for making Japanese rice without a rice cooker: http://www.justhungry.com/handbook/cooking-courses/japanese-cooking-101-lesson-2-great-japanese-rice/

          • Sydney Bristow :

            That’s the blog I was using! I just read the “makes 4 cups” as measure out 4 cups of dry rice. I like the tuna soboro recipe she has put into the rice balls.

        • No no! Read this… by none other than the late great Robert Ebert who happened to love the rice cooker.


          • love that article by roger eberts!

            as another fellow asian to the OP, keep your rice cooker! my rice cooker only has on and off and I cook way more than just rice in it. I steam dumplings, cook hard boiled eggs, make stews, and other things with my simple rice cooker. i’m just too cheap to upgrade to a slightly nicer zojirushi

      • +1

        OP I would start here, and then add other items as and when you need them. That way you’re not adding unnecessarily.

    • Anonymous :

      I find my Dutch oven to be very very heavy. I think something the size of the Lodge cast iron chicken fryer (it’s a very deep frying pan with a lid) is a better size and slightly lighter. Or the enameled cast iron dutch ovens tend to be smaller than the giant cauldron sized ones.

    • I don’t have a microwave either; I have found that having Tupperware-sized glass storage containers is very helpful in reheating food in the oven. I use them for general food storage etc as well as reheating so they are very convenient – out of the fridge and into the oven without messing up any other dishes.

      • Just wondering, does reheating in the oven substantially increase your electric bill?

        • Only if you have electric! Hopefully AnonZ has gas :)

        • We have what I consider ideal – a gas stovetop but electric oven. Electric ovens are SO much easier to keep at the correct temperature in my experience!

          Anyway, I’ll highly recommend a toaster oven. It replaces a traditional toaster and also serves as a mini-“real” oven for small portions, saving the energy and time associated with heating up the big one.

    • If you have room you could get an InstantPot. Also, a 10-12 inch non-stick skillet. Sheet pan for roasting veggies.

    • 2 medium sized pots and one smaller one. A small non-stick frying pan. A cookie sheet and a Pyrex square or rectangular casserole/baking dish. Glass storage containers like AnonZ mentions that can go from fridge to oven are great, and especially good for heating up leftovers. And of course a chopping knife (chef’s knife), paring knife, and cutting board. Everything else is gravy, unless you like to bake. In a pinch you can always use disposable foil baking pans from the dollar store for the one time a year you want to bake a loaf cake.

      I have a built-in microwave but we grew up without one, so I’m not used to it and rarely use it. I reheat everything on the stove or wrapped in foil in the oven.

    • If you’re cooking for one, I’d splurge on a 3-ish quart Le Creuset Dutch oven in a pretty color you like, and then you can keep it on the stove as a decorative accent and not worry about storage. You can cook rice or stew in it quite easily and because the Le Creuset is enamel coated, you can also store leftovers right on the pot. Just stick the lid on and put it in the fridge.

      I’d also buy one great chef’s knife. I like Henckels but Wustof is great too. Both of these lines have high end and low end knives. This is one purchase you should not make online. You should go to a kitchen store and try the knives. You want a knife that feels really good in your hand.

      I would also buy a small paring knife but I would not spend a lot of money on that. You could even buy one of the ceramic knives as long as you are sure you will be careful with it.

      • Lodge Pots are nearly as good as Le Creuset and only a fraction of the price. http://www.thehungrymouse.com/2011/06/06/dutch-oven-battle-lodge-vs-le-creuset/

    • Rainbow Hair :

      We don’t have a microwave — it was a habit we got into with limited counter space, and it just stuck. One thing that it took me forever to learn w/r/t reheating on the stove is to always add water. It sounds obvious now that I’m typing it out, but things reheat so much better if you splash some water in the pan with them.

      Is there room for a pot rack to hang somewhere? We have one of those semi-circle ones that hangs above a counter where there are no upper cabinets — what would otherwise be dead space. It’s nice not to have to devote cupboard space to pots and pans!

    • Sounds like an instant pot would work well for you. It is bulky, but we use ours almost everyday. Agree with the rec for a cast iron dutch oven. I have one from Le Creuset and it is my most used pot.

  9. J Crew Coupon :

    Does anyone have a J crew coupon/discount code they won’t be using? Need to buy some suiting stuff for an event coming up and would like to save some money! TIA!!

    • No help, but just bide your time — there’s bound to be a 30% off your order type promo rolling out soon, given all the new merch that’s been added over the last 2 weeks.

  10. Has anyone taken Apple Cider Vinegar for health reasons? I’ve always heard that Brag’s Natural ACV was supposed to be a good health tonic, but kind of filed it away as crunchy hype. On a whim, I picked up a bottle last week and started drinking a tablespoon in a glass of water a day. For the first time in my life, my feet are warm. I didn’t even realize they were cold before…I know it sounds weird, but it’s crazy. It might just be a coincidence, but the only think I’ve changed is the daily ACV. Anyone else try it?

    • My father reports losing an additional 2-3 lbs after he started drinking a shot a day. Anecdata, but there you have it.

    • This comes across as promoting a product, I swear I’m not. I’m a regular poster, but since this sounds a little crunchy and kooky, I went anonymous :)

      • I believe that ACV can have benefits, but I reaaaalllly don’t think it improved your circulation. I thought the supposed benefits were more about weight loss/nutrition status.

    • Purely anecdotal, but my grandfather swore by it and lived into his mid 90s and was exceptionally healthy for his age until his last 6 months or so. On the other hand, he also had good genes.

    • Well, it’s probably not going to hurt you, so no reason not to keep drinking it! And even if the benefits are a placebo, they’re still bnefeits.

  11. ugly flower birks :

    Help! I need to wear ugly Birkenstock sandals for a while because of foot problems. I bought black ones with a pink and green flower theme because they were in my size and it was a pain emergency. Still I’d rather not buy new ones…

    Do I disregard the sandals when I choose the rest of my clothes (as if it was a cast) or do I choose clothes that aren’t a terrible mismatch with the sandals (more casual stuff)?

    I’m just back from maternity leave and I’ve splurged on a lot of lovely new clothes I’m aching to wear… new dark blue pinstripe trousers, a new dark blue 100% silk blouse, black skinnies with a sequin seam, olive green calf length wool cardigan etc. none of which I would normally pair with the ugly shoes.

    I’m in a fairly casual work environment (meaning that blue jeans are ok, lots of different clothing styles and formality levels depending on the wearer and what you are working with, I don’t NEED to look put together but I want to). I was just so excited to be getting out of joggers, jeans and black t-shirts after 2 years at home with the kid.

    What would you do? What would you wear with the ugly flower sandals?

    • I would not wear multi colored floral birks. Ever. Aren’t orthotics an option? There are lots of supportive shoes out there.

      • Actually I think Birkenstock makes an orthotic insert for shoes

        • ugly flower birks :

          I have the insert, this time it’s my toes that give me pain. That’s why I grabbed sandals. Normally I wear ballerinas or loafers at work, I couldn’t find any quickly that would give me the toe space I need AND keep me from walking out of my shoes.

          Pregnancy, motherhood and not paying attention to my foot changing gave me acheing toes that have turned inwards. The only plus is that my feet are now flatter, wider and longer so I can now find my size in normal stores.

          • So you are developing bunions, which cause the toes to curve in. I am too, which I didn’t even realize as they don’t cause me any pain but I have noticed that my historically narrow feet now are a bit tight around the base of the toes. For me part of it is genetics, as I don’t wear a lot of high heels, but everyone’s a little different as to the cause.

            You could do a quick search online for shoes for bunions, to find something nicer than BKs to get you through this period.

            I would keep your wardrobe simple for now, and if you wear your nicer pants, keep the top simple/monchromatic, as your colorful Birkenstocks will now become the focus of your wardrobe.

            So dress down a little/simplify for them.

          • Get thee to a podiatrist. They should be able to suggest the best shoe option.

          • Try Arcopedico shoes (the Lytech line), if what you have are bunions. They are enclosed, but with a stretchy material that can accommodate a bunion without irritating your foot. They’re varying degrees of ugly, but will still be much more attractive than wearing Birkenstocks with socks.

      • Yea I have to agree here. Wear your nice new clothing and please just figure out a different shoe option.

        • ugly flower birks :

          I would still like to wear sandals for now… with socks… I just realized it’s not going to look great. Can anyone imagine a look where sandals+socks would look… at least in fashion?

          Do you have any suggestions for something prettier that accomodates a wide forefoot but narrow heels? For ballerina-type shoes I would need straps, so I don’t walk out of them. I don’t have to worry about looking professional.

          I’m only 35 so I kind of want to look young… again. Really, no-one is going to bat an eye whatever I wear. I work with engineers, IT, lawyers, business people, everybody dresses differently. But this is MY grown-up time away from the house I want to be pretty again.

          • No. There is no way, no how, any possibility of socks and sandals working.

          • Maybe if you worked in Silicon Valley…. you would see some young male programmers wearing this…. but they are not in fashion…. even for women in Silicon Valley.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      I’d wear something that made it clear it was a medical choice. Black grandma sneakers convey that more than Birks. If it was just one foot, I’d wear a medical shoe and sketchers or something on the other foot.

      • ugly flower birks :

        What are grandma sneakers?

        • Blonde Lawyer :

          Haha. I wasn’t trying to insult black sneakers. My grandmother ALWAYS wore shoes like these

          so in my family, they were known as “grandma shoes.” I had a pair for waitressing too.

          I don’t know if they would work for your issue but I have a pair of Croc sandals that don’t actually look like Crocs. I wouldn’t wear them with socks though. If you had to, you could wear the black ones with black socks.

      • lawsuited :

        +1 There are people who would choose to wear floral Birkenstocks, and people who would choose to wear socks and Birkenstocks, although I can’t imagine anyone doing either of those in a professional setting. I think doing either will telegraph that you are making bizarre style choices rather than telegraphing that you have a foot injury. I think you’re better off getting a true orthopaedic sandal or shoe. Look at Mephisto, Clarks, Ecco or whatever brands they carry at your podiatrist’s office.

        Once you get the injury addressed by a podiatrist, I find that Michael Kors flats, especially the Fulton flats, are a good fit for my feet which are wide in the toe box and narrow in the heel.

    • Marshmallow :

      You should check out the brand Mephisto. They make business-appropriate supportive shoes that are (I think) orthotic friendly. I have found the support to be pretty similar to Birks.

    • I have worn the orthotic-friendly, bunion-friendly wide Crocs, in black. It screamed, Foot Injury! And Temporary! and people felt appropriately bad for me, but I still wore my black trousers, etc. I was pregnant, if that helps.

    • +1 don’t wear the floral Birks outside the house. Get something in black that makes it clear you have an injury.

    • You could go full hippie; I knew peoplewho would paint/draw on birkenstocks in college. Maybe you could paint over the tacky flowers with black. But, that doesn’t help much with your navy items.

      • ugly flower birks :

        I think navy+black work great together. But not navy+black+pink flowers and green leaves.

    • After I had foot surgery (and was out of the black boot), I wore Dansko sandals that buckled across the toes and ankles, so very adjustable. They were a good solution for me. But it was during the warm months!

    • Order a custom pair of shoes from this place: http://www.thedrifterleather.com/. Put the Birks orthotics inside if you need the arch support.

    • the trouble is :

      I think the problem is flowered birkenstocks suggest to the viewer that you actually think they are cool/pretty/neat whatever, and the problem is that they’re…not. Instead, I would go with the most hideous birkenstocks, thus allowing you an ironic/normcore vibe. Black birkenstocks were big on the runway/in high fashion and its trickle-down recently, no? And I’ve been seeing white recently as well. I’d go with black or white, and also only the 2 strap style (not the dainty 3 strap, which has the same problems as the flowers.)

      Another option, if you’re not into the normcore is Clarks… I teach and so I stand and walk around the classroom a lot and I and the other lady professors swear by them. there are some hideously frumpy ones and then some that are fine.

      • Anonymama :

        Okay, are these them? http://m.6pm.com/p/birkenstock-arizona-soft-footbed-painted-bloom-black-birko-flor/product/8364374/color/637103?gclid=CNyu1bD1sNICFUO1wAodJWwDGA&zhlfid=139&kpid=38825901&ef_id=V2myUAAAAWxzdisl:20170227183457:s

        Not nearly as bad as I was picturing from your description. I still don’t know how you can pull them off chicly with socks though. But if you keep the rest of your outfit sleek and even a little trendy you might be able to keep things on the fashionably awful side rather than the frumpy awful side.

      • lawsuited :

        +1 White Birkenstocks were huge in summer 2014. I actually like the t-strap ones!

    • If you do have an opportunity to order shoes, I suggest naot sandals or shoes…they have plainer styles, and work with my bunions as well, I find the cushioning and insert actually more comfortable than a Birkenstock. Clarks, rockport, fly of london sandals, taos, and ecco brands should work too.

  12. Can we talk Oscars fashion? :

    Best: Viola Davis and Emma Stone
    Worst: most of the rest, esp Scarlett J and Nicole K.

    • I loved Emma’s dress until I saw the weird flappery bottom. Everything from hips up was perfect. But I have an irrational dislike for the styles of the 20s.

    • I loved Emma Stone’s dress, especially her real not-enhanced chest. She was perfection. And I LOVED the fringe skirt.

      I loved Octavia Spencer’s Marchesa gown too, and I thought Brie Larson looked stunning. The architecture of her gown was just perfect.

      The worst look for me was Dakota Johnson. That color was all wrong on her and the dress was just blah. Maybe she wanted a prim look because her movie career has been so un-prim but nothing about that getup worked.

      • Forgot to mention Kirsten Dunst in new-look Dior. Flawless.

        • Although she looks to either have had new after-market parts added or maybe that is just a dress with lots of padding sewn in (my wedding dress was like this — the sewn-in bra matched the dress’s shape and not my shape).

    • Shopaholic :

      I agree with your two best. I would also add Taraji P. Henson – actually all of the ladies of Hidden Figures looked amazing last night. And that part where they brought out one of the ladies they had portrayed killed me.

    • Best: Taraji P. Henson

    • Marshmallow :

      Agree on Viola Davis, that color was everything. Other best for me: Janelle Monae. So regal! I also loved Sara Bareilles’ dress, I thought it was ethereal and perfect for her performance.

      The only HUGE miss for me was Dakota Johnson. The color, the satin, the sleeves, the BOW… no.

    • Karlie Kloss all the way. Kirsten Dunst’s look was also gorgeous. Agree that Dakota Johnson’s dress, hair and make-up were awful.

      • I love Karlie, but her dress was just a knock-off 2012 Gwyneth Paltrow. And I hated the straight across neckline on Kirsten Dunst’s dress.

        • Yes, I though Karlie wore it beautifully and of course she is gorgeous, but it was incredibly reminiscent of Gwyneth’s iconic Tom Ford.

    • I hated Janelle Monae’s dress. It looked like she was wearing a costume from Alice in Wonderland.

      • It was very Rock Me Amadeus, but I thought she pulled it off.

      • Yeah I couldn’t get into it either, the skirt portion looked like a dress within a dress. But she looked cool from the waist up.

    • Gail the Goldfish :

      I think my favorite was Auli’i Cravalho’s dress–the white one she had on on the red carpet, not the red one while performing (though I liked that too)

    • Best: Taraji P. Henson, Halle Berry, Viola Davis, Emma Stone.
      Worst: Janelle Monae, Busy Phillips, Dakota Johnson, Felicity Jones (I love the idea of that style, which is similar to my wedding dress, but it was so ill-fitting and not a good color on her).

    • Loved: Jessica Biel (wow, that dress), Janelle Monae (I think only she could wear that dress and it was incredible), Chrissy Tiegan, Isabelle Huppert, Hailee Steinfeld (her whole look, including makeup was perfection), Olivia Culpo (also great hair and makeup), Taraji P. Henson (day-um), Octavia Spenser (consistently dresses well), Ava DuVernay, Denzel Washington’s wife (Pauletta), Salma Hayek (always looks incredible year after year – same with Jennifer Aniston), Amy Adams, Robin Roberts, Viola Davis (just a perfect look for her), Auli’i Cravalho (both on the carpet and in performing).

      Nicole Kidman and Emma Roberts’s dresses fell a bit flat to me and were too similar. Same goes for Brie Larson’s (I thought it was similar to Taraji’s but TPH’s escalated that look to just WOW).

      • Emma Stone, not Emma Roberts’s dress. My mistake.

        • Never too many shoes... :

          Emma Stone was wearing a Planned Parenthood pin on her dress near the strap, which just made me love the whole thing even more. Dakota Johnson also had one on her purse…too bad that her dress and hair made her look like a Manson girl.

      • Edna Mazur :

        I loved the first picture I saw of Hailee Steinfeld. Would have been my top of the night. Then I saw another picture showing how sheer the skirt was, and I am so over that trend.

        I LOVED Viola Davis, Jessica Biel, Taraji P. Henson and Emma Stone too.

        Worst- Dakota Johnson, Janelle Monae, Vanessa Hudgen

    • I was IN LOVE with Emma Stone’s look last night, being a lover of retro style myself. Such a classic Hollywood look. The dress was amazing, her hair was amazing, and her eye makeup inspired me to step up my (non-existent) eyeshadow game. I’ve always loved her.

  13. Thanks for the reassurance :

    I posted recently about being worried to visit the States as a tourist. Thanks for the reassurance.
    And also for the advice. Much appreciated.

    I’ve been twice (last was in 2010) and we loved it, people wee warm and friendly. Hope it goes well this time too.

  14. What are the tall Amazon-type women wearing for workout pants these days? I need recs for new leggings or pants for running outdoors. Finding this very simple item is becoming as soul-sucking as swimsuit shopping. I have a flat butt, wide hips, and full thighs. Every style seems to be sized straight and narrow through the legs, even from my old go-to brands. I can’t even pull them over my legs unless I size up. Then the waist is too big. I’ve never been a huge leggings fan (don’t find them comfortable and I feel so exposed), but I’m quickly moving into OMG I Hate Them territory. I’ve struck out with Old Navy, Target, Nike and Under Armour, all brands I used to wear regularly. Lucy runs short. I haven’t tried Athleta for awhile but that might be my next stop.

    • This is basically my body type and I swear by Athleta tall pants for stuff like this. They have a ton of joggers and other pants (non-leggings) right now that might fit what you need.

    • I wear a lot of lulu tights, despite the hate they get. I am tall but I do not have your body type so this advice may not be helpful- big butt (lol), average hips and maybe slightly thicker thighs depending on what workouts ive been doing. The rise is longer than a lot of other brands which helps them stay up. In particular- the inspires, fresh tracks (for winter), and I ever wear a pair of wunder unders to run in all don’t budge.

    • Athleta has talls (and they are in the gap family, so you may want to try out gap and old navy)

    • I believe Zella makes a ‘tall’ size

    • Oiselle work well for me.

    • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

      Have you tried any of the more running/tri brands? Sugoi, Brooks, Hind, and Zoot all work well for me. A bit over 5’11” here. Worth trying, and I find the quality/features much better than more “general” brands.

    • lost academic :

      Basketball shorts.

  15. This is hideous. There are so many beautiful options out there, how did this make the cut for a post?!

  16. Rainbow Hair :

    Dyed my hair rainbow this weekend (well, red and purple underlights)! My (usually rather uptight) mom keeps telling me how *~classy~* it looks so I guess it can’t be that bad! My husband says it’s ridiculous, but good thing I don’t take his opinion on my hair very seriously. And *I* am thrilled about it!

    Anyway, it’s in a big clip and you can’t see the rainbow at all today at work. But I can’t wait for the day to be done so I can take it down!

  17. I was late posting on the weekend thread, so I wanted to followup here. First, I really enjoyed the long conversation from women in tech! Loved seeing how many are interesting in programming. Second, I just started the Online Master of Computer Science program at Georgia Tech and I cannot say enough good things about it. It’s challenging, interesting, and very well designed. It’s affordable at just $505/class (10 classes required, just like their on campus masters) and $300ish per semester in fees (so that adds a total of $1500-3000). They do accept people without an undergrad computer science degree, but they do not just let anyone in. Most without the undergrad have worked for a few years in programming. It’s selective admissions and the classes are identical to on campus ones, so the program is getting a lot of respect. It’s very doable, even with working full time. There’s lots of information on reddit (r/omscs) if anyone wants to learn more.

    • Go yellowjackets!!!

    • Thank you for sharing!

    • Thanks for posting. I’ve looked at these programs for a few years but always ended up not taking the plunge as I have a humanities background. Did you have a CS undergrad degree? If not did they require you to have certain prerequsities to apply?

      • I know two people who completed a Masters in CS from DePaul in Chicago. One had a background in social work, and had done some IT work for the not-for-profit she worked at and the other had an arts degree. Both are bright and motivated, but neither had any formal CS background.

      • I have a CS undergrad but I hadn’t worked in the area since 2008. But a lot of people get in without it. The subreddit r/omscs would be your best resource for determining if you could get in. I know quite a few people with humanities backgrounds have been accepted.

    • This is SUPER helpful. I’m in a CS adjacent career path and would love to add a credential like this.

      • I love that it’s a strong name (Georgia Tech is pretty highly ranked) and it’s getting a lot of recognition. I am still a bit hesitant that it’s online and thus may be viewed as less than an on campus master, but the program is relatively cheap and students are receiving good feedback for completing it. Some companies, like AT&T, have large numbers of employees in the program. So I think it’s respected enough to take the risk. I’m thrilled to add this credential to my resume, too.

  18. I debated whether to share this because while I want to encourage the other ‘ r e t t e s who are dating but frustrated, I also didn’t want to come off as #smugdating. It’s a cute story though, and I am happy and the internet is all about sharing about yourself, right? So here we go . .

    I have had several dates with a very nice young man. We have nerded out together on several things, one of which being that we both like collecting old stuff. He came over to my house a week ago for our third date and I made pizza. He asked how often I make pizza, and I said maybe a couple of times a month. On Saturday, I received a package with a beautiful antique pizza cutter in it. At first, I assumed I had gotten drunk and randomly ordered it (although I haven’t been drunk lately soooo). I took a closer look at the packing slip and put together that he had gone on eBay, tracked on down, won the auction, and had it sent to my house. I had no idea I needed an antique pizza cutter (I had no pizza cutter at all, which he clearly noticed), but I LOVE it. It was such a sweet gesture and really made me feel like he gets me and is paying attention.

    Dating ladies – there are still good and thoughtful men out there! I am 37 – don’t give up hope! I most recently got ghosted then provided with a lame excuse and also had a date which was clearly NOT a match, but this guy seems great so far. Maybe it will work out, maybe it won’t, but it’s nice to know that there are kind and attentive (hot) men out there. It’s a numbers game, so keep playing it!

    • Veronica Mars :

      YAY GO YOU! I will share my happiness as well–I just began dating someone who a) has a great career and loves his job b) shares my same values and belief system c) loves dogs d) just bought a house e) is future-focused and unafraid to talk about commitment f) is the sweetest guy I’ve ever met g) called me, on the telephone, for our second date to offer picking me up at my house and driving to the restaurant which he picked and made reservations for h) helped me assemble ikea furniture and afterwards remarked “that was fun!”… I could keep going on and on. I really hope this one works out, but even if not, there are men out there like this! They exist!

    • What a thoughtful guy!! Love this.

      I went through so many duds I was starting to accept bullsh*t behavior as normal, and when current SO just didn’t behave that way I spent about 6 months waiting for everything to turn to sh*t. Over a year in it still hasn’t and I’m finally starting to believe it won’t. Maybe we’ll be together until we’re 90, maybe we won’t, but either way, we won’t break up because he doesn’t know how to be a grown up, attentive boyfriend.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      That is so sweet! Excited for you and Veronica Mars!

    • PatsyStone :

      Aww, that’s awesome! When my husband came to pick me up for our first date he told me his car was acting up and I’d have to drive and, also, it would be a big help if I picked up the check. It took me almost a full minute to realize he was joking, I had become so inured to jerky behavior.

    • Senior Attorney :

      Hooray! Let’s hear it for the lovely men out there!

    • As a single and frustrated person, no need to apologize for sharing! This is a sweet early-dating story. Good for you and Veronica Mars. :)

    • This is a great story!

    • So happy to hear it!

  19. Would any of y’all be able to give me advice on the fit of JCrew shoes? I live in the middle of nowhere and have to internet order unless I’m going on a multi-hour drive to stores, and so am generally not able to try on in a store. If you are able to compare to the fit of Stuart Weitzman, Andre Assos, Donald Pliner, or DVF, so much the better, but any advice regarding how they run would be greatly appreciated.

    • I’ve never found any from there that were not horribly uncomfortable, which is sad, because they are cute!

    • J crew shoes usually are very uncomfortable, no arch support. The flats I tried recently were about one-fourth size too big, if that helps any, compared to Stuart Weitzman and Cole Haan.

    • In my experience they run true to size. They do run a bit narrow (which works for me, but ymmv)

    • I typically take a half-size larger than some other retailers in JCrew pointed-toe leather heels; same size as most other retailers in suede heels and all flats. That said, some of the brands you mention are known to run small, so for pointed-toe heels maybe you’d take the same size.

    • I find J. Crew shoes long and narrow (which may be perfect if you fit well in Stuart Weitzman…). I also find them stiffer and more uncomfortable than department store shoes.

  20. Our pellet stove (which supplies heat to half of our older, drafty house) has a blower fan going out and even though we have a whole account just for house repairs, with plenty of money in it, I am putting off calling the repair place because I hate, hate, hate tapping that account. I’m Googling frantically and trying to figure out if we can fix it ourselves. Does anyone else do this – freak out at the thought of spending their “emergency” money in an emergency? I always just think there will be an even bigger emergency down the road and we better save the money for that, which I realize is irrational.

    • I am this way too. I solve it by keeping some extra money in our checking account as a “non-emergency unanticipated expenses” fund. That way we never actually have to tap the emergency fund for repairs.

    • Yup, I’m totally this way.

      I realized it is because I am also a bit anxious, likely from growing up in a home where the glass was always 1/2 empty, if you know what I mean.

      So I always do Google to see if I can fix it, but set personal limits on how far I will go.

      Unfortunately, I’m not very handy…..

    • When I get this way, I just remind myself that that’s what the account is for. Otherwise, why is the money sitting there? The money is for fixing things. Something is broken and the money is not fixing it by sitting in the bank. I repeat this to myself a few times, then call the repairman.

  21. The organizers of the Women’s March recently released plans for “A Day Without A Woman” on March 8, International Women’s Day. (More at https://www.womensmarch.com/womensday.) I felt that the March was really powerful, and I appreciated the intersectionality of its statement of principle, but I’m trying to figure out if there’s a meaningful way to participate next week–I haven’t heard of any events in my city, so I wonder if this is supposed to be a solo thing.

    Are any of you planning to participate? Care to share your plans?

    The organizers suggest three ways to take part:
    1. Women take the day off, from paid and unpaid labor
    2. Avoid shopping for one day (with exceptions for small, women- and minority-owned businesses).
    3. Wear RED in solidarity with A Day Without A Woman

    • I don’t think I’m going to strike. I work for the federal government and I think I’m doing more good right where I am. It also seems a little odd because I don’t want to jeopardize my office’s work or my job but just not showing up– I would plan ahead to use PTO, and then it just seems a little pointless. Maybe I’m missing something here. I will do the last two on the list, though.

      • Yeah, that’s how I feel about striking, too. I work in a really progressive non-profit and I think I could probably even get away with not using PTO but then I should just . . . go eat bon-bons all day? I know “unpaid labor” is a specific term for gendered work but it also makes it seem like I shouldn’t, say, take the day off from work in order to volunteer for a women’s-centric cause.

    • 1) – no. I like my job and it is a busy time for me. And my feminist husband and i share tasks at home anyway so i don’t feel the need to arbitrarily do nothing at home that day to prove – what exactly?

      2) yes

      3) no bc terrible color on me. I will wear a Nevertheless She Persisted shirt though.

    • It doesn’t make much sense to me. I like my job and my co-workers and my boss, who is a huge advocate for women, so I don’t see what positive effect would come from punishing them.

    • My due date is March 9. In the event I go into labor on March 8, I would *love* to take the day off from unpaid labor. Any suggestions on how to make that happen? I’m open to outsourcing :-D

    • Rainbow Hair :

      I would sort of love to strike but also I am terrified to bring politics into the workplace, so I won’t. Also also I planned to take colleagues out for lunch that day, oops. But it is at a small minority owned business at least! You know, if there’s a march that’s not a million miles away that I could participate in… we’ll see.

      I’ll wear red.

      I’m also organizing a write-postcards-to-your-representatives party in March, so I’m not doing nothing, at least.

    • I’m not sure how to participate either. I could take a day off of work, but I’d use PTO. I’ve been thinking of taking a day off of work to finish my taxes, put together a vacation scrapbook, etc. I doubt anyone will notice/care that I’m gone though. I never shop on Wednesdays (I save all of that for the weekends), and in my office Wednesdays are already “wear red to support the troops” days.

      If I do take the day off, I feel like I should keep my daughter home from daycare, too. But then I would be caring for her all day (unpaid labor), and I would not be able to do the taxes and things.

      • lawsuited :

        +1 I could take the day off work using PTO but that’s not going to send any message to my office beyond “lawsuited is using her assigned PTO”. And actually, I know I’m paid more than 2 of my male counterparts, so I don’t really feel I need to send a FU message to my employer. I’m 9 months pregnant and my husband’s been taking care of everything around the house for weeks, so I can’t take a day off from unpaid work at home. I want to stand in solidarity with women who are not in the same position as me WRT work and home, but I don’t really get how to do that.

    • I’m a little annoyed that they are trying to horn in on the red dress. There isn’t another color that expresses womanhood?

      “Red Dress” is a specific campaign of the American Heart Association, and heart disease is the number 1 killer of women.

      • Is “wear red” really an infringement on the “Red Dress” campaign? I think there are obvious reasons why they didn’t suggest pink, and I’m not sure what other color would have made any more sense than red without also having overlapping associations (green is science, blue is the Democratic Party, white is racist suffrage t t e s . . . ).

    • I work in public policy and for me, being at work is my effort. I am ok participating by not doing unpaid labor, but as a single lady with no kids this also doesn’t really apply. Interested to hear thoughts in response to the strike and what women can do collectively to effect change. I remember reading about a very effective strike by women in Iceland – they left work early in compensation for their lower pay.

    • I am the only female executive at my mid-sized company. I think I do more good by showing up every day and kicking ass.

    • Hehe, isn’t that what they want (for women to stay home)?

    • lost academic :

      I will awkwardly be on vacation this day.

  22. Has anyone gone on vacation in Iceland? What were your favorite things you did/saw? When did you go? I am thinking of booking a trip with my SO, we would most likely rent a car and staying for 5-9 days. I want to see everything!

    • We went in August 2013 for 4 days. We stayed in Reykjavik the whole time. On one day, we did a Golden Circle tour, which goes to Gullfoss (huge waterfall), Geysir (a spouting geyser) & Thingvellir (where the tectonic plates are pulling apart). This was a great day trip, highly recommend. We also went to the Blue Lagoon, which is a huge spa/hot pools. The Blue Lagoon was one of my favorite parts of the trip.

      The amount of time we spent in Reykjavik was definitely enough to feel like we got a good feel for the city. 5-9 days seems too long for just Reykjavik, but from what I hear, is probably not enough time to do the Ring Road. Friends of ours did the Ring Road and really loved it, but they took 9 or 10 days just for that.

      • Oh, also, it was FREEZING, even at the end of August (highs were in the high 40s), which we were not prepared for. We did not see the Northern Lights while we were there– they said August-April is the best time to see them.

    • Yep, 6 days last July. We did the whole ring road and found that we had plenty of time, but we moved at a somewhat fast pace. Our group was 2 people in their 30s and 2 people in their late 60s/early 70s and the itinerary was fine for everyone.

      Day 1: Land at 6am, grab breakfast at airport and head to Blue Lagoon. Shower, etc., then drive the Golden Circle before checking into Reykjavik hotel. Dinner in Reykjavik & to bed early! (This was a long day, but the Blue Lagoon was surprisingly rejuvenating after the flight.)

      Day 2: Drive east on Ring Road to Vik area. Stop at Skogafoss, and do pre-scheduled snowmobiling tour on a Glacier. Lunch in Vik. View black sand beaches in Vik area, and stay overnight in Hof.

      Day 3: Continue on Ring Road; visit Ingolfshofoi Nature Reserve to see puffins; visit Jokulsarlon Lagoon (highlight of the trip) for zodiac ride. Dinner in Hofn (famous for Langoustine) and continue on to spend night in East Fjords.

      Day 4: Poke around East Fjords (beautiful) and continue on to Lake Myvatn area. Visit Detifoss on the way, Hamafjall mud pools (another highlight), Dimmuborgir lava fields, and the geothermal baths at the lake. Spend night in Akureyri.

      Day 5: Poke around Akureyri before continuing the remainder of the ring road (we detoured to Snafellsnes Peninsula or you could drive directly back to Reykjavik). Dinner/lodging in Reykjavik

      Day 6: Explore Reykjavik for the day before the flight out.

    • Good Times :

      We stayed in Reykjavik for about 5 days last July. We rented bikes for the duration of our stay to get around and explore the city, where we ate at various restaurants and from mobile vendors, went to the phallological museum, and took a paranormal walking tour. In between exploring we had some structured pre-planned activities, including outside of Reykjavik For example, we went to a play/comedy at Harpa, visited Blue Lagoon, and snorkled at Silfra. The weather was pretty great the entire time we were there. Sunny and about 58/60 degrees.

    • We did Iceland in the first week of September 2016. It wasn’t too cold – sweaters and a jacket and we were fine. We did have waterproof outer jackets and pants, though. My group was two adults in their 30s and a 7-month baby.

      We landed in Reykjavik at 6am, and spent the next two days in the city. One day we did the Golden Circle tour, the other we did a walking food tour of the city and saw Hallgrimskirkja.

      We did the Ring Road in 4 days. We had hotels in Akureyri, Seydisfjordur, Vik, and back in Reykjavik. Highlights of the Ring Road were the Borgarnes Settlement Center, Glambaur Farm, Godafoss, Dettifoss, Jokulsarlon Lagoon, Skaftafell, and Reynisfjara. If we had an extra day, I would have taken a bus to Thorsmork (the interior).

      The best part of the trip was really the scenery that we drove through. It varies so much along the Ring Road, and none of it is anything like what we have here in the US.

      • Iceland OP :

        Wow! Ring road in 4 days! Did you have time to stop and do things? For example, I’d like to go whale watching in Husavic, spent a few hours in the blue lagoon, etc. We’re not major adventurers so driving around taking in the scenery sounds awesome to me!

        • The Ring Road is only ~830 miles, so we did a little over 200 miles each day. As Americans who live nowhere near public transportation, that wasn’t a big deal for us. My husband also loves road trips, and we both just like taking in scenery as well. Most of the best sites in Iceland (all the waterfalls, the glaciers, etc) are along the Ring Road, so we would drive for an hour or two, stop and sight see, drive, stop for lunch, drive, sight see, etc. There are also lots of random art sculptures or cool things to stop, take a picture of, and continue on your way. We saw everything on our itinerary.

          Because we had a baby with us, we knew we would have to skip things like the glacier hike or whale watching. I can definitely see adding in a couple of days if you want to do things like that.

    • Anonymous :

      We went in August/September of 2015. We only spent a few days in Reykjavik (and honestly felt like we had more than enough time there to see what’s there). We did do a cool walking tour around the city though, put on by a young-ish dude who was also organizing a pub crawl, which we went to.

      Outside of Reykjavik, we drove down the south coast, stopping for to hike near Hveragerði to a naturally occurring hot spring in Reykjadalur (we were worried Blue Lagoon would be too touristy/expensive). Then we went to the Westman Islands, where we did a boat tour, hiked the volcano, ate amazing seafood, and went to a teeny two-room aquarium that has little, live puffins just walking around! So much fun, plus we got to see the Northern lights.

    • My friend and I went this past September and had the time of our lives. We rented a car and AirBnB about a 5 min drive into downtown Reykjavik. First thing we did was go to the Blue Lagoon which was amazing/my first spa-eque activity ever!, next day we went snorkeling in amazing clear water and did a mini roadtrip around the area (it wasnt the ring road but the other one…the name is escaping me now). Next day we drove to the western part of Iceland, saw some mountains, next day we did an all day hike with a tour company (glaciers, waterfalls, volcano, AMAZING) and then we went to the black sand beaches further south from Reykjavik.

      I might be forgetting some stuff but we also tried some restaurants downtown as a splurge – highly recommend. We really wanted to do whale watching but the weather was too windy/rainy so we got our money back.

      I recommend dressing in layers and bringing hiking boots and a good rain jacket. The weather was kind of fickle but never too cold.

      Also, get an idea of what you want to accomplish with your trip. Our original plan was to go around the entire country. However, even though Iceland is small, 5 full days (and one day for travel) was just not enough and things are more spread out the further north you go. So staying in the city center/having a home base then going on mini roadtrips throughout the day worked out best for us.

  23. I absolutely love the pink coat too! :)

  24. My 5th wedding anniversary was Saturday, but I’m separated from my husband with plans to divorce. He cheated on me several times and moved out last Jan.-March and then Sept.-present. Its for the best.

    He texted me Sat. night saying, “I hope you’re well. Don’t think I forgot what day today is.”

    It made me angry, and now I feel sad and bummed like a failure. I wish he hadn’t texted me. I assume he was trying to be nice, but seriously…don’t want to hear it. I could use some internet virtual love today!

    • I’m so sorry.

      You deserve a lot of virtual love today. And I see real love in your future. You deserve it so, so much….

      Hang in there darlin’! We’re rooting for you.


    • What a jerk. Can you block his number? I assume any communication you have to do about the divorce can be done through lawyers.
      And don’t feel like a failure. You didn’t do anything wrong and it sounds like you are so much better off without him. Hugs.

    • I’m sorry! While I imagine was well-intended, it’s also perhaps inadvertently reflective of his not-great character: so full of himself that he’d think you’re concerned that he would forget about what this day means, and so also clueless/selfish that he wouldn’t stop and think that reaching out is painful.
      In other words – I think he may have reinforced the rightness of your decision to split.

    • Wildkitten :

      What a jerk! I hope you are finding a way to celebrate your newfound freedom.

    • Lyra Silvertongue :

      Tons of virtual hugs.

      I was in a similar situation (separated from now ex-H on our fifth wedding anniversary, divorce papers were filed by then- I walked in on him having sex with a co-worker of mine)- and he had a card and gift delivered to me for our anniversary. And it was really thoughtful actually- it was a book scarf with words from Tale of Two Cities (my favorite book). It made me so sad and angry all at once, but I tried to keep myself busy with other activities that day so I didn’t dwell.

  25. Hope I’m not too late on this thread. I’m planning a girls’ weekend in Austin at the end of April. Where should we stay? Where should we drink? Food is a thing that should probably also happen; recs welcome.

  26. Does anyone have a suggestion for file storage? I have a work laptop and a personal laptop, but because I travel very frequently (both for work and over weekends), I end up using my work laptop for personal use very often (I have to take my work laptop with me on most leisure travel and reasonable use of my work laptop for personal reasons is allowed by my employer). I’m constantly having to email myself personal files so that I can access them while on the road and would like to streamline everything so that I don’t have to worry about not being able to access something important from my work laptop. I don’t want to save personal files directly to my work laptop for privacy and other reasons. I’ve used Dropbox before, but ran out of space (is $99/yr worth it for 1 TB? I’m not sure if I have enough files to merit that), and have used Evernote in the past, but it doesn’t store files, only text you type directly into notes. Anyone have suggestions for cloud storage that they’re happy with?

    I’ve also been looking for a good place to store family photos – this doesn’t have to be the same software as above, but I would like something free/fairly cheap as the main function is storage (not editing) and occasional browsing to find specific memories for family milestones where everyone asks me for pictures they can use for cards/frames/etc.

    (Can you tell I’m not a very technically savvy person?)

    • LondonLeisureYear :

      Google photos for photos. Great search function. Auto uploads pics from your phone and desk top.

    • Anonymous :

      Try Google Drive

    • Thanks! I’ve also heard of Google Keep – is that the combination of the above or something different altogether?

    • I just pay for Dropbox. At a certain point you do need to pay for storage. They’re easy to access everywhere, including on my phone and iPad.

    • lost academic :

      I’ll add also that your work laptop if it’s pretty new MAY have an SD card slot. If so, you can mount one and use it for personal storage, and then easily pop it out if you need to. That would nicely solve the problem to some extent.

  27. Confused and Sad :

    A couple of months back, I posted that my manager said she would not push for my promotion. I was extremely disappointed, angry, sad and frustrated. She is never clear about what are the requirements that need to be met to be eligible for promotion. Even when she said she wouldn’t promote me this year, she didn’t give me an explanation about where I went wrong. When I pushed her for that, she held me to super high standards which other people in my team were not held to. I should be paid three times what I am being paid and have direct access to other multi billion dollar clients to do the work she asked me to do. She was extraordinarily rude to me, minimized the impact of my work etc.

    This is the second time something like this is happening to me in this company. First time it happened, I was wrongly accused of under performing and he was going to fire me. It was totally unexpected and to say I was shocked was an understatement. I resisted that challenged him to prove that I under performed and told him that I was going to take that to HR. Before it went to HR, he went to them and he told me that they said I have not under performed. The criteria he was using for performance assessment was wrong. I never approached HR on this. But I left that manager to my current team.

    I am visibly depressed and feeling so out of control. After working so hard and making big impacts, I still don’t have any control over
    progressing in my career. I didn’t talk to her for various reasons (like holidays, she had to take multiple business trips etc) for around one month. But during that time, I decided to go to HR and report what went on with my previous manager. As that happened two years back, HR wanted to know why I was going to her now. I told what is going on with my current manager. Then she opened an investigation on the incident that happened two years back and told she will think about what to do with my manager. I also went to some high level manager whose charter is to understand why so many women are leaving our company and told her what was going on with me. I will not know about anything HR person does though.

    My manager is kind of alarmed about me. It is very obvious that I am not the same person as I was before. She inquired once what was bothering me and I told that whatever she spoke to me about my performance, promotion and career was bothering me. I didn’t try to hide anything. She kind of apologized (too much ego for a straight forward apology), she said I should trust her and she accepted that I have performed way above my peers and she will try to get me the promotion. I don’t know if I am being promoted or not (will know in a couple of weeks).I still cannot shake what happened and move on. She knows it and wants to talk to be again (she said she is concerned about me). I don’t know if HR has contacted her.I don’t know what to say to her, I have already told her whatever I had to say. Any advice on how to navigate this situation is highly appreciated.

    • Anonymous :

      I guess I don’t know why you either wouldn’t involve HR right away. It seems like you’re holding grudges by reporting this stuff years and months after the fact. Progress in your career can take time and often, often involves factors outside your control. Think of it as a marathon, not a sprint. Be ready to leave if you don’t work well in this environment.

      • Confused and Sad :

        I didn’t involve HR right away because that manager lied to me that his boss is in agreement with him that I should be fired (his boss didn’t know about this entire incident). I was not in a position to lose my job at that time. My husband was lost his job during this time because of restructuring. I didn’t want to be jobless at that time. Of course I felt cheated and helpless and it constantly bothered me I didn’t stand up for myself. When something similar to happened again, I decided it is time to get help from HR.

        I want to know how to answer my manager, not about how I hold grudges and I should be ready to leave.

        • Anonymous :

          It’s not clear from your post what the question is that you feel you need to answer.

          • Confused and Sad :

            She said she wanted to talk to me because she was worried if I was doing okay. So she may ask what is bothering me.

        • lawsuited :

          It sounds like you’ve already told your manager has already asked if you are doing okay and you told her that you are not doing okay because of what happened with the promotion so she already knows what is bothering you. Unfortunately, you can’t force your manager to give you the promotion if she doesn’t want to or isn’t able to because of other factors in your organization. So, if you don’t get the promotion, and not getting the promotion makes you depressed, then looking for another job where your skills are more appreciated and better compensated is good advice. I wouldn’t recommend telling your manager that though – if you decide to look for another job, I’d do so quietly and then you can decide whether you raise this issue when you resign or during your exit interview.

    • Anonymous :

      I’m mostly worried about your …. depression. This sounds a bit complex, with multiple issues over years. I think you need someone impartial, outside of the company to talk to, if just to sort through some of your emotions. It is unclear to me if you have a situational or more major depression going on. To say “My manager is kind of alarmed about me….. I am not the same person….”

      I am worried about you.

      Is there someone you can ask for help? Can you go see your primary care doctor and ask for a referral, for possible counseling +/- medication?

      • Confused and Sad :

        I know I am depressed, though I think this is situational depression. I am not lying to myself. I was okay before and I will be okay in some time when I figure out how to get out of this mess. I am talking to people (both friends and unrelated people who are experts in my area) and I am rethinking the why I approach my life (which is partly why I am withdrawn, but don’t want to tall all this to my manager).

        I know not all things are in my control. At the same time if I just give up because things are not in my control, I will always be a person who will accept unfair decisions and will be taken for granted. So I want to push back and try to take control of my situation.

      • lawsuited :

        +1 I experienced pretty severe situational anxiety symptoms related to some very stressful circumstances at work a few years ago, and no one at work noticed. I’m thinking that for your manager to have a) noticed the change in your personality and b) be alarmed, your symptoms must be severe. Asking for help from your PCP or a therapist is a good idea, and a good first step to taking control of your symptoms.

    • I mean this kindly, but are you absolutely sure you are objective about your own performance? I say this because it has happened to you twice and you went to HR twice. Are you sure you really are a top performer?

      • Have you given any thought to looking for another job? It sounds like your current manager doesn’t want to promote you. Whether fair or unfair, this is the situation. If you aren’t ok with that, why wouldn’t you at least consider other opportunities elsewhere? Also, Ask a Manager might have good advice here.

        • Confused and Sad :

          I am looking for another job and I will make the transition when I find an opportunity which will give me the position I deserve.

      • Confused and Sad :

        I have no doubts about my performance. I am the top performer among my peers. I got feedback about the business impact from people with whom I worked. I also got my assessment reviewed from a neutral person (I didn’t know her before this incident) who is in a very high position. I also got it reviewed from my previous managers. Finally my manager herself accepted that I have performed way above my peers.

        • It seems like performance isn’t the only factor. Your posts suggest to me that there are behavioral/interpersonal issues preventing you from being promoted.

        • Confused and Sad :

          What kind of behavioral/interpersonal issues? I have not received any feedback about those aspects either from my manager or from any one else.

    • How old are you? Is this your first job?

      Reality is — you will NOT always get what you want or deserve. Your manager can not promote you bc she is holding the promotion for someone else; bc she doesn’t have the budget for it; bc she doesn’t like you; or bc it’s raining today. And you going back to her and to HR over and over for the answers “you deserve” and to “stand up for yourself” will not change the fact that she is the decision maker, not you. Right now you’re acting straight up crazy. Any inclination she may have had to promote you next yr is probably disappearing. Standing up for yourself – sure – you’ve done that. But after you stand up for yourself, you need to let the chips fall where they may. Begging for a promotion doesn’t make you look too good.

      Frankly given that you have unnecessarily involved HR and your manager is “worried” about you from a mental health perspective, your career trajectory at this place is pretty much over. Focus on getting out. Take something below what you “deserve” to get out — but get out — it’s the only way you’ll “recover” from this professionally and personally.

      • +1

      • Confused and Sad :

        Did you read my post? I have gone to HR once in more than five years that I am here and out of necessity. I have not gone back to my manager about promotion. It was she who pushed me to know what was bothering me few weeks later, I told her the truth. I absolutely have no intention to talk to my manager about this over and over again. It is she who wants to talk to me again. I am not begging any one for a promotion. I have not missed any deliverables even after all this. Your answer is pretty useless to me.

        • Anonymous :

          Kindly, there are multiple people here either telling you or suggesting that you are not coming across the way you think you are and that you may well have burned bridges at your current employer because of it. For the direct answer on what to say to your boss, I’d suggest just saying that you were disappointed in her decision but you now understand. Full stop. And then spend some time/resources on the depression related to this and figuring out how not to repeat it at future places of employment.

          • This is good advice. While I hope lawsuited’s hypothesis below about why the manager is showing concern is correct, I think another likely one is that HR contacted the manager after you complained (this would be a logical part of “opening an investigation”). If that’s right, the speculation that you’ve burned some bridges (however unjustly) could be right on.

        • lawsuited :

          My guess is that your manager had a conversation with you a few weeks later, and now wants to talk to you again, because she has noticed a change in your behaviour/attitude (even if your performance on deliverables has not changed). Your behaviour/attitude at work matters, and it’s appropriate for your manager to address it. If your behaviour/attitude change is a result of depression then I would expect your workplace to be supportive as you get appropriate treatment from your PCP or a therapist. But if your answer is going to be some version of “my behaviour/attitude has changed because I didn’t get a promotion I wanted/deserved and this is how its going to be unless or until I get the promotion”, I think that will not reflect well on you and will negatively impact your future at the organization.

          • Confused and Sad :

            You understood my situation correctly and didn’t jump to berate me. Thank you for that. I am sad, but I am performing. I have no intentions of being sad and angry until I get a promotion. I am doing everything I can to be normal or at least appear normal.

    • Managers often tell you to ‘trust them’ when they have been advocating for you but cannot tell you the results yet. It is possible that you are actually going to get a good result.

      A couple of things:
      1) It sounds like you only had one conversation with your manager about this, and that made you frustrated so you gave up. This may be a case of misaligned expectations. It’s often the case that you need to have several conversations over a sustained time period (6 mos to a year) to make the case for promotion and have it go through. And a bad first meeting doesn’t mean the end of the world! If your manager is not very experienced, she may simply have not known how to handle the conversation, especially if she was stressed about other things. Sometimes it takes persistence to lay out the case, ask about gaps, listen to manager not be articulate about gaps, note mildly that that’s not very specific and you wonder if it’s possible to follow up next time, follow up next time, etc.

      2) A hypothesis: I noticed some ‘marked’ phrases in your language — things said a little differently than I might say them. Are you a native English speaker? If not, is it possible that you and your manager are using different cultural and language expectations? If your performance is objectively really good, which it sounds like it is, perhaps cultural or communication barriers are getting in the way of your manager knowing it. For example, you may expect that high performance financially is the #1 reason you will be promoted, and you do not need to say anything (and in fact, asking for a promotion might count against you). Your manager may be looking for you display certain “dominant” behaviors and not even looking at the numbers. Is it fair? Nope! But it could mean that there are good intentions on both sides, and with some patience, you can get on the same page and work together to get you paid what you deserve.

      3) If you can share a bit more information about how senior you are/ your experience level, it might help people help you!

      • Confused and Sad :

        Thank you Curious for being kind.

        1. Manager absolutely doesn’t want to talk about promotion. She doesn’t tell you what she is looks for, she says she looks for certain triggers, but not tell you what those triggers are. So it is impossible to make my case over long periods of time. She is a very experienced manager and our first conversation regarding promotion should have been a routine conversation, instead she was so angry, dismissed my work and refused to give me the goals that I need to achieve as she doesn’t like to talk in terms of promotion.

        2. I am not a native English speaker. Her expectations can be anything as long as I get to know them. But she is very hesitant to tell any one what she is looking for. She said she used to tell her expectations, but some person whom she managed met all those expectations and demanded a promotion. She is is very vague about it now.

        3. I am eight years out of college. I was a high performer for first 4.5 years. Then I changed teams to expand my skill set. Unfortunately I ended up in a toxic team (manager who wanted to fire me). I was in a very bad situation personally during that time. So instead of fighting against my manager, I chose to change teams. I recovered from that bad experience and performed very well in my current team. I also want to get objective opinions about my performance, hence I got it reviewed by people who don’t know me or my manager.

        To be clear, I didn’t go to HR complaining about my current manager. I went to HR to document the incident that happened two years back when I was in that toxic team. However, it was current manager’s attitude of diminishing the impact I had at work which brought back to me the memories of that toxic team and made to go to HR. If she has said budget constraints as the reason, I would not be so angry. Instead she said I don’t deserve it without tell me what I should be doing to deserve it. Of course, I know no one can force my manager to promote me. However, I don’t want to sit idle and play victim. I wanted to do everything in my hands to better my chances.

        I am trying my hardest to get back to normal and in parallel trying for new positions. I don’t want to go to her and have the same conversations again and again.

        • Hi Confused and Sad,

          Internet hugs to you. This sounds hard, and I’m sorry people were harsh upthread. It sounds like your main “mistake” has been having two managers in a row who weren’t clear on promotion criteria (and in fact seemed actively bad about it). And at your middle team, you decided not to fight that because you were exhausted. Makes sense. Now you’re eight years into your career, so you want to advance. Also makes sense. I can see why you’re confused and sad.

          It’s a red flag to me that your manager is being deliberately vague about promotion criteria, having admitted it’s because someone met her standards before… and she didn’t want to promote him. What’s that about? Is that a general situation at your company? Some places are just really bad about promotions. I was in one and had to leave to find a better place. I don’t know if your personal circumstances allow you to leave the company, but if this is endemic, it’ll be hard to find a team that breaks the mold.

          I’m glad that you know other people who objectively consider you a high performer. That seems like a good sign. I like that you’re trying to get back to normal and trying for new positions. I hope there’s a place you can find where the manager is good at growing their people!

    • Anonymous :

      Couple thoughts.

      -I feel like this is one of those questions where the poster is like “OMG you guys, help please, I really need a rock, can someone give me a rock?” And when they get a rock from someone they’re like “NO! Not that rock! That won’t work!” Sigh.

      – OP, you are not entitled to a promotion even if you are an objective high performer. Even if you are a stellar performer, if you have interpersonal issues, communication issues, etc. you may not get promoted. Especially if a promotion would involve you supervising other people and there is perception (correct or incorrect, but please remember, a person’s perception is their reality) that you have an attitude problem, are a tattletale, or don’t have good relationships with your peers. Promotions, in most organizations, are not about “check all these boxes and BOOM, here’s your promotion!” Promotions are usually reserved for people whom managers think have upward mobility potential. Your previous problems in the org maybe (probably) affected how you are perceived in terms of future management/high performer potential.

      -I got some very valuable advice early in my career. Which was, if you keep encountering the same problems over and over, either the entire world is in conspiracy against you, or you are the problem. There are very few professional situations where someone can’t look back and say to themselves, “I probably could have done that differently.” As a manager, someone’s ability to take ownership of their mistakes and responsibility for developing themselves and solving their own problems matters A LOT. I would echo the recommendation to get some counseling and figure out A. Why you think you are “owed” or “entitled to” certain things, and B. What you could have done differently in the last five years so your situation would have turned out differently. Also maybe do some soul-searching as to WHY you want this promotion so much, and what you can take responsibility for in terms of making it happen for yourself. You are the master of your own destiny. It’s not up to your company or your managers. Do some thinking and let us know what you come up with. Maybe then we can help further.

      • anon associate :


        OP-I feel like you want to stand up for yourself and promote yourself (which is reasonable), but they way you are doing that is by insisting that you get recognized the way you want-with a promotion. I understand that desire and think it comes from a good place, but I’m concerned that your fear is that if you won’t do that you’ll be “playing the victim” or “accepting unfair treatment.” First, you’re not a victim if you don’t get promoted. Second, you just have to accept a certain amount of ‘unfair’ treatment at work. It just *is* that way. I get the impression you’re not in law; correct me if I’m wrong. In firms, associates almost always advance by class year unless there’s a big, big issue. They become midlevel associates and then senior associates. In that case, it’s generally correct to say that people “deserve” to move up if they’re performing well.

        Are promotions generally seen as a ‘given’ at your work place? To me, you appear to believe that they’re a given and that if you check the boxes, you should get one. Thus, it’s unfair if you don’t. I suspect that at your work promotions are *not* a given, and that’s the disconnect that is causing you pain and frustration. In law, the analogy would be partnership. Good work- even being the top performer among your peers- just isn’t enough. There are hundreds of factors. Some are obvious (high billables, good work, client base) and some are totally intangible (people skills, fitting in with the good old boys(ugh)) and some are arbitrary (partner x is mad at partner y and so won’t promote partner y’s associate this year). Point is, no associate is entitled to partnership, and you are not a victim if you don’t get it.

        Once you stop looking at yourself as a victim of an injustice or unfair treatment and start looking at the promotion simply as something that hasn’t happened for you yet, you’ll feel better. You also need to accept that it may never happen for you at this place- and that that may be due to factors that are outside your control. In that case, leave. Does it suck? Sure. But you’re not bending over or giving in if you acknowledge that and look for a new avenue to the role you want. The reality is that calling in HR when you haven’t gotten the work opportunities you want is going to make you seem entitled and really tone-deaf. The best way you can fight for yourself is to continue to do great work, be sensitive to interpersonal factors, and keep looking for another position.

        • Confused and Sad :

          I work for a tech giant as an engineer. Promotions are not a given where I work. I never said I am entitled for a promotion. However, I am entitled to know what are the things I should do to be eligible for one. I should be given a feedback about why I was not promoted. I can expect a fair review of my performance.

          I went to HR to report about my previous manager and I inevitably had to tell HR how my manager treated me specifically around lack of meaningful feedback and her hostile reaction when I wanted to discuss about the possibility of a promotion. I didn’t complain that my manager was not willing to promote me. I absolutely have no regrets about going to HR.

          For the previous poster who is saying I should have looked back and figured out what I should have done differently, I looked back and realized that I should have gone to HR when my previous manager threatened to fire me. I didn’t fight back and accepted the unfair treatment and it bothers me till today. My mistake was accepting the unfair treatment and running away from the difficult situation.

          I am continuing to do great work. I am generally a high energy person who takes a lot of initiatives. However, in my current state of mind, I cannot put on a fake smile and act as if nothing happened. So the difference is very obvious. I am looking for an other job and will move on as soon as I find one.

  28. Anonymous :

    I am interviewing with – and interviewing them – in contemplation of a move to a very small ‘firm’ (2 partners, 1 associate) tomorrow – we’re having a long, long lunch. For a lot of personal/lifestyle reasons, moving to this firm is a very good move for me, but I’m trying to come up with questions of what I would want to know and what information, if any, would make what seems like a good idea into a bad idea.
    I work in a smaller Southern town, and this is the kind of move that, once made, I can’t undo – my only other option really would be to go solo. I currently work in a small, but larger firm (10 attorneys).
    My biggest concerns are about financial footing- ensuring that while this firm appears to be doing well, knowing what the financial indicators that is otherwise would be and making sure I request that information.
    Any suggestions for questions and/or documents that I should request would be greatly appreciated.


    • I know someone in a similar situation and the expectation there is that the two partners were essentially training the associates to take over when they retired. Not knowing the various ages involved, is that something you’re okay with?

    • TorontoNewbie :

      Are you moving as partner or associate?

      • Anonymous :

        The two partners are in their late 40’s and late 50’s, respectively, the associate is in her 20’s. I am in my late 30’s and I would be coming in as a partner, however at a reduced schedule – I am leaving my current firm as a partner. I would not say this is a taking over – I expect that each will be practicing in another 15 years.

    • Re financial footing, I would want to know how large and diverse the client base is–having one main client or even lots of clients who are all in one industry would be a yellow flag.

    • I would consider the type of training the partners can provide. I don’t know where you are in your career, but in my experience, partners in a small firm say they will train and mentor young attorneys. Then they realize how time consuming it is and the associate is left with all the pressure of being a seasoned attorney without the guidance and mentorship.

    • Early in my career, I left a mid-size firm (10-20 attorneys spread over 2 towns) in a small Southern town to go with a then-three person firm. I stayed there over 30 years, did very well financially, and retired last year. The work at the smaller firm was much more interesting and rewarding, but there are a few things to consider:
      (1) what is the relationship among the three attorneys already there? Will you be coming in as an odd person out (I was, as the other three were very close personally and with families, and it made me often feel left out both on a personal level and from many professional discussions in the first few years).
      (2) If all three are men, you can quadruple the above concern.
      (3) My guess is that the older partners are ready to slow down, spend more time with families and on vacations, and you and younger associate will wind up doing the lion’s share of the work and will get very little guidance or true mentoring. If you are ready to be thrown in, that may not be much of a negative.
      (4) Personalities are much more important in a very small firm. Do you personally like the others? If not, those dislikes can also make life harder. If you do like and respect them, and the feeling is mutual, it can be a very rewarding situation.
      (5) Find out about staffing. Will you have adequate secretarial assistance? Will you simply be sharing another partner’s assistant, who is going to resent you and the extra work.
      (6) What is the reputation of the attorneys in town? Are they known as responsible businessmen who pay their bills in a timely fashion, or as someone who spends every penny as soon as it is received. Differences in opinion about how to spend firm money, how much to set aside before divvying profits, etc. are again very important in a very small firm.

      Good luck. A small firm can be a great experience.

  29. PSA specifically aimed at tailgaters. If you tailgate me it will not get you there any faster. If you obnoxiously tailgate within inches, I will slooowwww doowwwn. It is not my fault that you are late for work. It may surprise you to learn that I cannot make the light turn green and your honking at me does not change the light timing.

  30. Re the oscars. I was pretty uncomfortable during the scene with the tour bus. I felt so “we are going to give them the treat of their lives by letting them be near our fabulous selves!” And I also thought they were making fun of Gary from Chicago (though, like Ken Bone, he may be able to cash in on his 15 seconds of fame)

    • Brunette Elle Woods :

      I thought the oscars were pretty boring until the end! That was the most interesting and shocking part. Someone really messed up!

    • BeenThatGuy :

      I thought the tour bus drop in was the best part of the show! It’s probably the only time I smiled the entire 5 hours.

    • Anonymous :

      Agreed. I thought the bus tour was deeply condescending. I was uncomfortable just watching it.

  31. This blouse reminds me of the pajama style trend that’s in right now. It looks very comfy, cute, and stylish all at the same time.


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