Wednesday’s Workwear Report: V-Neck Sheath Dress

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

This plus-size dress (which also comes in regular sizes) has an unusual color, but I like it — I think it would work well under black, gray, navy, or white, as well as some more daring combinations with darker greens or a red cardigan, for example. I also like the hidden zipper in the back, as well as the pockets. It’s certainly affordable — it’s on sale for $74.99 from $99, and with code FRIEND, it’s only $52.49. Plus-Size V-Neck Sheath Dress

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  1. Sunflower :

    I need advice on politely and professionally handling inane office small talk. I’m an introvert with a severe case of RBF and I struggle to hide my feelings when I’m bored or irritated. I don’t want to be rude and I know that small talk is something I need to get better at so that people don’t think I don’t care about their lives (I do care, just not always up for the conversation). How do you handle situations where you’re not particularly invested in what people are talking about (sorry, your yard is not as interesting as you think it is), but you need to be polite and maintain good relationships?

    • Following…

    • For RBF, I think ever so slightly turning up the corners of your mouth does wonders (assuming you care). It may feel silly at first but I think it makes a big difference.
      For the rest, I just ask questions. Pretend I’m Oprah and just inquire about everything. I think most people are happy to talk about themselves.
      But a follow up: how do you feel about small talk as an introvert when the questions are directed at you? I work with several people who are definitely on the more introverted side of things and they ask questions of me and I’m happy to chat but when I ask them things it’s a bit like pulling teeth and I almost feel like I shouldn’t “bother” them with too many questions but at the same time it feels rude to have a one sided conversation. My goal in social interactions like this is for everyone to be comfortable so I’m genuinely curious.

      • As an extreme introvert, I’m happy to oblige if you need to talk about your day to day etc. but I’d rather you not ask me a how are you then follow up questions. By that I mean I’d probably answer with a cheerful “all is great!” and that is enough small talk for me. I’m a monster haha

        • Clearly not a monster! But you’re missing opportunities to connect.

          • givemyregards :

            Not Houda or the OP, but ehhh….I’m polite to everyone I work with, see at conferences, etc. but I’m about as well connected with people as I’d like to be. Also, I think the biggest issue with small talk is that the people who love the it the most are the ones that will stop by your desk every. single. day. I can still be connected to people and make small talk with them once a fiscal quarter.

      • Elegant Giraffe :

        I’m an introvert. When someone asks me how my day is going, I say “fine” or “ok” or something equally brief and then am confused when people want to hear more…

    • “I’ve got a lot to work on right now, but maybe we can talk later” (you don’t actually have to follow through with talking to them later)

    • Anonymous :

      Honestly, you need to have those conversations even if you’re bored. Get into them. Learn something. Be curious. It will help with your empathy and understanding of the world if you engage in small talk with a genuine interest in people. If you brush it off or come up with quippy not now bon mots, you’ll lose a powerful opportunity to connect with people and to get things done.

      • Anonymous :

        Yeah I think there’s something to be said for trying to find something interesting about things like, someone’s yard or kids or home improvement projects. If it’s something really out of my wheelhouse, I like to pretend I’m an anthropologist learning about another culture.

        My exception to this is sports talk. People who want to drone on endlessly about sports want to do it with people who also saw that game in 1976 or whatever. They look at you like you have two heads if you’re like, what game that sounds interesting tell me more. Normal rules of conversation seem to go out the window with sports.

        • Yes, set a goal to learn something from each conversation, so keep asking questions until you learn it. Something like “You have to plant garlic in the fall” or “Suburb X is not my jam at all, mental note never move there” or even “Bob thinks he knows a lot about Quentin Tarantino but not really.”

          And yes. I have no sympathy for sports talk. I mumble something about “You care about stupid sports stats from the 70s, I care about stupid gossip blogs. I won’t bore you with the rumors about Aaron Rodgers, and you don’t bore me with his passer rating.” and then wander away.

          • Goal setting is great advice (and those are hilarious examples), it also helped me learn to network effectively in similar ways (“you can leave when you have met three new people.”) It clarifies what you are getting out of the situation besides “social bonding’ which is a vague statement, as opposed to “learning something about someone’s life that is useful/interesting to me actually helps me be empathetic and more patient with these foundational social rituals” which is a specific benefit. And tiny goals (engage until I understand one thing about lawn care) are so much easier to achieve than “I need to be better at social chitchat.”

            Agree that normal conversational rules don’t apply to sports, also to true gearhead discussions about cars.

      • +1 to this.

        This is part of being a human being who exists in society. Learn to s u ck it up.

    • Anonymous :

      Get a glass of wine. Everything is better with wine.

      Barring that, I excuse myself from these conversations. Second K’s advice – “I have a call to prepare for, see you later!” And then close your door for a little while so it looks like you’re actually on the phone.

    • Anonymous :

      You smile, nod your head, ask a follow up question. And remind yourself whether you care or are genuinely interested is completely irrelevant.

      • Anonymous :

        This. You don’t care about the topic but you do care about maintaining/building a relationship with the person.

        • Agreed. Also, I hate to totally pull out my mom’s favorite advice for me when I was 10 and whining, but “Only boring people get bored.” Find a way to be interested in your coworkers as human beings, and use conversations about yard work (or whatever) as a way to demonstrate that you care about them. Or to learn about some new stuff. Or! If you don’t like talking about yards, ask them about other stuff: books they’ve read, Westworld, vacation plans, etc.

          It’s also okay to excuse yourself from small talk conversations after a couple of exchanges. “Oh, so interesting to hear about that book, I’ll see if the library has it! I’ve gotta go get ready for a call.”

          • Well, my 12 year old is going to be hearing that this weekend…

          • SF in House :

            My version of that is “the only people that get bored are the ones that lack imagination”!

          • @lsw it’s one of those things that I HATED hearing at the time…but that turned out to be a really useful life lesson.

            Moms, man. They’ll get ya.

    • I just want to say that I was (still sort of am) the same as you and I think I turned people off so much that no one in my office speaks to me anymore. They all get up and go to lunch and I don’t get invited, they have conversations over my head (open layout), when something traumatic happened in my life, no one said a word to me when I really wanted their support and condolences. Like the above posters, be pleasant, ask questions if you want to, but don’t back yourself in a corner because that’s what I did (without meaning to) and I’m pretty unhappy in my office as of late.

      • I don’t know what traumatic thing recently happened, but you have support and condolences from this internet stranger! Hugs!

      • This is me too. I’m sorry and second the support and condolences.

    • Things I usually ask:
      What was the easy part/ hard part of baseball/knockout roses/chili cookoff/ finding contractors for your roof?
      Is it a busy time of year for you (this works esp well with ppl ourside of my dept)?
      Any interesting clients/ closed deals for you?
      I like your shirt/shoes/haircut….

      Again, be as authentic as you want to be but also know that no one is asking you to feign deep interest. Part of working well with others in any workplace is also relationship maintenance. I just find asking a how are things with you and fam works well enough for me.

      • Anonymous :

        Oh, this +1

        Even when I am not interested in the actual conversation but invested in supporting small talk I have a list of questions and comments that apply to almost any conversation:

        – Wow, that sounds tough
        – Oh, was that a surprise?
        – Are you ok with that?
        – That sounds like fun! Would you do it again?

        I use these a ton, but people like talking about themselves, so they work well. Asking about the other person is my shield for deflecting the conversation away from me.

    • Another issue is that some people who ask you things are just looking for info to gossip about. So be careful with that.

    • I am introvert as well and even though I do not find pleasure in small talks, you can do them & still be authentic. My strategy is to give green light to my curiosity – I just start off Mondays by asking how people’s weekends were, which places they visited, which books they read, which bike route is the best, where did they buy their new lovely dress, who is their hairdresser etc. I am (relatively) new in this country and in my team, so this gives me the opportunity to talk & build relationships plus and I get tons of good tips & inspiration for myself.
      I only talk about myslef when asked – people are usually very happy to talk about themselves and they fill in the time while we are both waiting for the coffee machine.

      • Please go ahead and add something about yourself. Don’t wait to be asked. I had to learn this the hard way. I got people to talk about themselves, but nobody turned around and asked questions about me, and therefore noone knew me. I had to learn to speak up about myself.

    • If you want to have better conversations, whether small talk or in general, you need to do and learn about interesting things. What are your hobbies? What do you like to read? How can you use those things to have better conversations with coworkers? Don’t be afraid to discuss current events or politics to the extent possible.

      Which of these is better and more likely to lead to an interesting conversation?

      Coworker: “So I spent all weekend tearing out weeds and putting in drought-resistant shrubs – ”
      You: “uh-huh”

      or you: “Wow, that’s a lot of work. Did you see that story in NPR showing that if everyone used drought-resistant shrubbery, the U.S. could save millions of gallons a water a year?”

      • pugsnbourbon :

        There was an article in … WSJ? NYT? several years ago about characteristics of lasting marriages/relationships. One of the common traits of long-married couples was a tendency to “turn toward” – meaning, basically, that you get excited about what your partner gets excited about.

        I’ve practiced it in my marriage and in other relationships and I think it helps foster a real connection. Sure, you have to fake it sometimes – I don’t really want to know the ins and outs of hydroponic gardening – but it strengthens your connection, even on a professional level.

        • Atlantic – I loved that article.

          • Is this the article?


        • I loved that article as well. It helped me pinpoint what was wrong in a close friendship (my friend is the classic “passive responder” from the article) and reminded me to always turn inward for my husband when he’s talking about electronics.

        • Does anyone have a link? That sounds really interesting!


          It’s a good one :)

        • Yeah, sometimes it’s fun to be excited for the person being excited about his or her thing.

          For example: My dad and my sister are avid Chicago Bears fans. I couldn’t care less about football. But, on some level, it’s interesting for me to listen to their conversations because they are so knowledgeable about football stuff. I guess even if I’m not interested in the topic itself, I find that expertise and enthusiasm is interesting.

          Does that make sense?

        • Senior Attorney :

          John Gorman wrote a whole book about that called The Relationship Cure and it’s applicable to all kinds of relationships including casual office relationships.

    • I am totally you, 20 years later. What I wish I had known:

      * Small talk is not a waste of time that keeps me from getting my real work done. Relationships are part of work.
      * Small talk is not a waste of time that only shallow people engage in. It’s relational work that leads to building rapport.
      * Small talk is skill that can be learned.
      * You’re going to need to meet people and get to know them all your life. It’s worth it to learn the skill.
      * To repeat myself: small talk is not a waste of valuable work time. A whole lot of work gets done based on rapport and good will. Small talk is part of building this relational equity.
      * You have to let people get to know you if they are going to like you and want to work with you. Small talk — where you offer inane details about your life — is how this happens.

      • What I never understood about any of this is that when you are hired someplace, you are expected to work with your peers. That is your job. If someone needs your help, you must help and vise versa…all for the common goal. You shouldn’t have to go around kissing a to make people (other than managers) like you so they WANT to work with you. Like it is their choice to do so or not.

        • yeah that’s just not how it works though. If someone’s job is to help you they will, but maybe you get pushed to the end of the list, etc.

        • Cool, but that’s not reality or human nature.

          • I think this is too culturally specific to start swinging around “human nature”. (Not to mention that this is a pretty standard neurotypical vs. neuroatypical difference.)

          • Back to the post about why you should only hire people who have the ability to “fit in” then.

          • Point taken. I am commenting from a Western cultural context, with professional experiences in the US and southern Europe.

            I think there’s also a big difference between someone who self-identifies as an introvert who hates small talk because they think their coworkers talk about boring stuff, and someone who is neuroatypical.

        • This is a narrow-minded conception of what working together entails for lots of professionals. I’m a lawyer. It’s not just a question of getting assignments and doing them because I am assigned to do them, and giving assignments and getting them done because they were assigned. My good relationships with my partners determine what work I get, how much work I get, whether I am viewed as a good “fit” with the firm, whether I have partnership/business development potential,….My good relationships with associates/staff determine how hard they’ll work for me, if they’ll go the extra mile, if they’ll let me know how a partner thinks on a certain topic, how much of my well-meaning but certainly vexing BS they’ll put up with to work for the common goal…my good relationships with staff in particular were instrumental in keying me into necessary info about the firm/ being a new lawyer.

          Think about it– if you get a new case/client in and need help, and can pick anyone you want, are you going to pick the person who you know and have a relationship with, and like working with, over someone who has always ignored you, all else being equal? Past the grunt work of being a junior associate, those are the kinds of relationships that can make or break your career.

      • This is so good. Thanks!

      • Anonymama :

        This is great advice. Also, it’s not that hard to come up with one or two things to ask people about (generic, like do anything fun this weekend? Planning any trips? Or specific, hows the garden/house/kids/yoga/latest book/recipe/restaurant? Any good hikes lately?) and one or two things to tell other people (about your weekend/hobby/whatever). Think of it like putting lubricant in an engine: it makes work relationships run a little more smoothly, and reduces wear and breakdown in the long term.

    • “oh how interesting, tell me more about X”

  2. I’m leaving a job and will be moving a few months after. I’m wondering if I can update my address after moving, because tax forms won’t be sent until next year. Do most companies allow former employees to do this? If not, is it time to get a mailbox at ups/usps? I’ve heard that mail forwarding isn’t reliable in my area.

    • Can you update your work mail address to something like your parents now and they will forward it to you when it comes? I did this with some product registration items when we were going to move but weren’t sure where. Alternatively, can you talk to your mailperson about this? We moved recently and our mail guy was great. Granted it was in the neighborhood so it’s easier for him, but he will actually forward us stuff now even though it’s past the mail forward period.

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve left several jobs because I was relocating. My employer (maybe because they knew that) usually asked for an updated address for paper work purposes.

    • Clementine :

      Yes, you can do this. It’s no problem at all- they’ll understand.

      You’re overthinking this- people do it literally all the time.

    • Anonymous :

      Of course. Just ask HR before you leave where to do it. A

    • Thanks for the responses. I may be overthinking this, but I want to make sure I don’t an issue later.
      – The job is with a large company, but HR representatives are not involved in the process. I won’t have an actual contact.
      – I don’t know if any family members would want their addresses to be used. I’ll ask around.

      • Why are you making this a drama? Call HR and ask what to do. Then do that.

        • It sounds like she was asking a genuine question. Maybe she has limited time left? Or maybe HR takes notes on phone calls, which could be shared with managers?

          • HR does not do that. That’s insane.

          • HR is not a monolith, Anon at 10:39. Some do it, some don’t. Making pronouncements and writing off genuine concerns is unhelpful and unproductive.

            Used to work in HR at a high level. Our staff was trained to share certain things with managers, whether I endorsed that practice or not. So, there you go. There’s one.

          • Get a grip pompom. She’s leaving.

          • I promise you HR is not reporting that someone asked how to change their address.

          • Grip firmly maintained, but thanks, Anonymous.

    • Elegant Giraffe :

      My employer has an option to have a former employee log-in to our system where W2s are. Might be worth asking about.

    • No Problem :

      If you get your mail forwarded to your new address, you’ll get it.

  3. Anonymous :

    I love this dress and was going to order it, but the straight-size version is only available in three sizes and mine is not one of them. Availability in plus sizes also seems limited. I am getting really tired of picks that are sold out or available only in a handful of sizes. I assume it’s because the posts are written ahead of time and no one bothers to verify availability of items at the time of posting. It seems like a faulty business model—how are you going to get revenue from affiliate links if no one can actually purchase the items?

    • Anonymous :


    • Agreed, but the sunny yellow one on the side (“Textured-Knit Sheath Dress”) is calling my name.

    • Anonymous :

      I suspect most of her revenue comes from ads.
      Also I’m not sure about Kat’s links but some affiliate links will store your info and credit the referrer if you eventually purchase anything – eg if the link points to Amazon and you click it but don’t buy anything but then a week later make an Amazon purchase, the referrer may get paid (unless you have cleared your cookies in the interim). That’s part of why many people think affiliate links are shady AF.

      • Anonymous :

        Well, more than once I have gone back at a later date and bought something that was posted here. I don’t mind that Kat is reimbursed for that. She deserves credit.

        As we know, seasonal items that are particularly great often sell out some sizes/colors quickly, as companies can’t afford to keep as many pieces in stock. I don’t blame Kat for that. I have also bookmarked something I liked and checked back later to see if it is in stock.

        • Anonymous :

          Yeah but the links may give her credit if you buy *anything* from the company, not just the featured item.

          • pugsnbourbon :

            Genuinely curious – why does that bother you?

          • Because if Kat recommends a particular dress on Amazon and I hate it, I don’t think she should get paid when I place my regular Amazon dog food order? She hasn’t provided me a service, why should she make money? I have no problem with her making a commission if I buy the recommended dress.
            But mainly I take issue with the lack of disclosure. Most b l o g gers know how affiliate links work and most people browsing and clicking the links have no idea the b l o g ger will get a commission for an entirely separate purchase.

          • anon a mouse :

            Two reasons. First, because it’s one thing if I click a link, go to a site and buy something. It’s another if I click a link, DON’T buy something, and return a month later of my own volition to buy something totally different. I don’t want to give affiliate income to someone when they didn’t actually prompt a purchase. I’m especially sensitive when there are links to sites like Amazon and Target where I spend a lot of money that have nothing to do with this site (or others).

            Second, I find it totally opaque as a consumer. I have no idea how to tell who is getting any commission off of a purchase I make.

          • You come here and read and benefit from what she provides, so what’s wrong with her making money from it?

            Also, I’m pretty sure that’s NOT how affiliate links work. I think if you click a link and buy anything on that visit, she gets a commission. But not a month later.

          • Yes, you are correct.

            The complaining poster is exaggerating.

          • anon a mouse :

            Amazon links can be good for up to 90 days (depending on whether you add anything to your cart on the first visit. Target links give commission for a week. I can’t easily find Gap/Banana length but it does say that if you visit any brand through an affiliate link, then if the customer buys anything from any of their four brands, the marketer gets commission.

            Look, I don’t have a problem if this blog (or others) shows me something and I buy it, and they earn commission. I have an issue if they show me something and I don’t buy it, yet they still make money off my purchasing habits that don’t have anything to do with what they linked.

            You can clear cookies or browse in incognito to reduce this, but it’s still shady AF (to borrow the PP’s phrase).

          • Anon a mouse – do you have similar concerns about knowing who gets paid what in regard to salespeople in a bricks and mortar location?

          • anonshmanon :

            I agree with one of the anoymous posters – if you frequently visit this place, even if mostly for the comments (as I do), you are deriving use of something that has grown in part because of Kat’s work. It doesn’t make your purchases more expensive.
            Maybe it’s less relevant for Amazon or Target, but for brands that are not on my radar, when I click on Kat’s link and then browse around and find something else from that brand that I like – that’s successful advertising. That’s what companies are trying to achieve when they pay for advertising.
            There seem to be skewed expectations in general in how digital services are monetized. People complain that facebook sells their data, but it’s a business! They make money somehow, and users are not paying money for the service they use. One of the early youtube-influencers just went into detail about how she had to take a break making beauty videos because followers expect regular, professionally produced content (it was her full time job), but begrudge her the money she made from it.

          • Just wanted to chime in with a personal anecdote. My SIL is a popular YouTuber and gets paid through affiliate links. Not only does she get credit if you buy what she linked to on Amazon, she also gets credit for whatever else you bought on Amazon within a window. (I don’t know it.)

            What creeped me out is that she gets a list of WHAT the person purchased. She doesn’t get identifying information about these people, but yeah, she does know that someone bought anti fungal creme, or whatever.

    • Anonymous :

      Huh. I have not liked or even considered buying any if her recommendations for years, so I’m always surprised that her picks are sold out. Hey remind me of my closet from twenty years ago.

      • Anonymous :

        I don’t think her picks are trendy or fashion-forward but a lot of them are good basics for women who work in conservative environments, which many people here do.

      • Anonymous :

        Nice. Thanks for that.

      • Maybe she should post more ruffles and bell sleeves then? To be more current?

        • Elegant Giraffe :

          thanks for the giggle :)

          • Anonymous :

            I’ve been watching Poirot on BritBox and in a least two episodes Miss Lemon has worn a dress with cold shoulders/split sleeves, which made me gasp and then laugh.

      • What is the point of this? Have you considered that maybe you aren’t the ultimate arbiter of fashion? Maybe other people like different things than you! You may not be as stylish as you think!

      • Nice job – thanks for insulting me, a reader who appreciates simple classic recs. That’s what this site is about.

      • Wow lots of defensive frumpy women today!

        • Normal Person :

          And lots of beastly anons…but that’s everyday around here, isn’t it?

        • Anonymous :

          Frumpy for sure. That’s not news.

          • Anonymous :

            What makes them frumpy?

          • Anonymous :

            This is a site for lawyers, no? Known for being on the cutting edge of fashion, as that is what their employers and clients want, yes?

        • I’m trying to learn how to be a proper professional woman and from this blog, I have gathered that entails being a bit more frumpy than I would like. To be taken seriously.

          I can never figure it out. Mixed messages everywhere.

  4. Zip wallet for iPhone in otterbox :

    My kavu zip wallet holds my otterbox-encased iPhone. But is getting worn and it is time to replace. I’d like something office appropriate (it is my during-the-day clutch/purse). Cost isn’t important but size/utility is. Any material is OK also.

    • I bought my mom one from knomo (I swear I’m not a shill, I’ve just been impressed with quality) and she loved it. They don’t seem to still have the same one but that’s where I’d start.

  5. shoes for tennis :

    Any recs for shoes for tennis? I loathe mine. Maybe they are stable but my feet feel beat up after playing in them. I would like something cushier or softer. Any recommendations? I play maybe weekly.

    • No specific recs because tennis shoes are so personal. I would browse tennis warehouse and read their playtested reviews. Then order a whole bunch as they have free shipping and free returns. This is what I do whenever I need new shoes.

    • Anonymous :

      You need tennis shoes – I used to play in head or K-Swiss, and I have no idea if they make them anymore. Go to a pro shop and find something there – they need to be firm to keep you from sliding around.

    • Following — are there any cushy shoes for tennis out there? All of my tennis shoes (esp. K-Swiss) have been horrid and I would change out of them as soon as I got done playing. Not even good for running an errand in on the way home. Hate them.

      • givemyregards :

        I just bought some nikes that are pretty cushy but still stabilizing. Zappos has a ton of tennis shoes so I just ordered a bunch and returned the rest. That’s what I would do if you don’t have a tennis store nearby or don’t feel like going.

    • I have Nike tennis shoes (as in, they are made for tennis) that I really like. I find them more comfortable than most other brands, and will happily walk home in them after playing.

  6. Anonymous :

    If you’re the type of person that did all the things you’re “supposed to” like high school valedictorian, ivy grad, top residency or biglaw firm or investment bank etc., have you ever considered walking away to do something considerably less/not “prestigious” and how did you reconcile it with “but I didn’t need an ivy degree for that, all my hard work at MBB will have been for nothing” or “what will I say to people?”

    Long story short – while I like being a lawyer and don’t want to leave tomorrow, my career hasn’t gone how I wanted at all. It’s been frustrating, and I’m really considering walking away in the next few years and starting a business. The businesses I keep coming back to are not your typical ivy leaguers’ businesses like my own law firm or consulting practice because I don’t want to chase the business as a solo. It’s “regular” businesses like a fast food or gas station franchise. Financially I can afford it and these businesses do well in my area (depending on location etc.) So it’s not $$ that worries me but all I can think is – I went to an ivy law school, worked at a v20 firm etc. to own an Exxon?? And I know my extended family (but probably not my nuclear family) would make such comments too. But then it’s like – is it the worst thing to pursue a high paying career for 15-20 yrs and then use that money to move on and be your own boss? How would you think about such things or what would you say if your bff was pursuing this?

    • Anonymous :

      I went to Ivy undergrad and law schools, worked in Big Law and then ended up in a job that doesn’t require a JD working with people who went to state schools. And I love it. I’d tell my BFF to do what makes her happy and stop chasing prestige for the sake of prestige.

      • Yes. Go for it. Who cares about where you went to school? You need to be happy. Do what makes you happy. That is why I want to meet a guy, get married and get rid of the same work grind, even tho I am VERY successful at it. I want a family and a home in Chapaqua. What is wrong with that? FOOEY on anyone who faults me for this!

    • Ask yourself “I went to an ivy law school, worked at a v20 firm etc. to be stuck at a job I don’t enjoy? To refuse myself paths I want to follow because of someone else’s arbitrary ideas about prestige?”

    • Friend's story :

      You’re exactly describing a friend who left biglaw to become a speech therapist. Wanted to work closer to home, school hours (had young kids at the time), could afford the massive cut in pay. She was really burned out from law and I think she’s happier overall.

    • Get over it :

      Get over yourself. No one cares about your fancy degree or what you do. Get therapy. Live your life and do what you want.

      • Anonymous :

        +1 – I’d think finally an entitled ivy grad got a clue

        • Anonymous :


          Running a business actually puts you higher on success road in my circles. Anyone can be a follower and a good study bunny.

      • Unnecessary. You and the poster below you don’t have to like the Ivy’s but in some families this matters A LOT and everyone down to grandparents and aunts cares and has comments. OP sounds like she may be from one of these families – as am I. OP – doesn’t mean you should let it stop you from pursuing what you want and let’s be honest in many of these families it’s ultimately about financial success not academic prestige (since you mention banking and biglaw not academia or PhDs). You already have that with 15-20 years in law and as others have said – owning a couple gas stations in the right locations is often the path to even more financial success. It’s not like you’re leaving law to sell makeup or something.

        • “To sell makeup or something?” Lol ok. I just listened to a podcast with the founder of Alikay Naturals. She started with $100 and is now worth millions.

          • Didn’t mean that – meant leaving a good job because you’re doing an MLM on Facebook. Obviously starting a make up (or any) co is different.

          • Lana Del Raygun :

            I presume this meant becoming a Mary Kay/Rodan+Fields/Arbonne/whatever “consultant,” rather than founding a makeup company.

          • Haha, yes, I really hate MLMs because it is such a predatory practice, but man do I want to shake them when they boast about “running my own business.” These are not the same things, people!

        • BeenThatGuy :

          It’s totally necessary. You’re implying that she should stick out a career she doesn’t love because of an ivy education and whatever her family would think. That’s ridiculous. She should live the life she wants regardless of her past choices that brought her to wear she is now.

          “It’s not like you’re leaving law to sell makeup or something”…you need to get over yourself also.

      • Yeah, this is what I was coming here to say. You’re not entitled to happiness because you’ve done the “right” things, OP. Nobody is.

    • Anonymous :

      Funny, the “rich kids” in my school growing up were from a family that owned a bunch of gas stations in the area. The parents were both educated, their friends were all doctors/dentists/lawyers, but the family didn’t have the debt or overhead that you get from opening your own medical/dental practice or law firm. I don’t get the sense that anyone looked down on the family for owning gas stations. I grew up rural middle class and I’m constantly experiencing culture shock over things like this… that owning a gas station would be something to look down on rather than a “fancy” job like it was when I was a kid.

      • We must know eachother.

        Anyway, I respect someone more for being a business owner than someone in big law. From what I read here, I have sort of built my own bias.

    • Sure, a person could own an Exxon without those degrees and achievements, but would you have? It sounds like this was your path.

    • Personally, there’s nothing better than owning your own business, though it is risky. But no growth is risk-free. If you want to do it, then go for it. All your years of education/hard work will still probably be valuable in some capacity in this venture. For the people who are going to judge, eff that.

    • I think it makes you interesting but I live in area where many people continue to follow the most traditional paths for success like you describe above and frankly, I’m getting a little bored. A lot of people around me seem disillusioned with their own end games but no one can afford to or is willing to take the risk to change the status quo. Watching this really makes me want to be in “cooler” profession. :) I say go for it.

      • Are you a lawyer? I feel like this is a lawyer thing to NEVER take a risk and plod along the same path forever even if unhappy. The biggest risk any of my lawyer friends who hate the profession are willing to take is moving into professional development/HR at a law firm! I don’t see this as much with MBAs. I know more than one who left lucrative positions big nyc banks within 1-3 yrs of starting to jump over into tech (without a real tech background), start a start up, go to a product company because despite what their b school classmates said, they were uninterested in financial services but cared to work for a major sneaker company. Yet JDs which resumes that are just as good don’t take risks the same way.

        • I mean, practicing law at a big law firm was historically the safe career choice for high-achieving college students. So I think people that are fairly risk-averse tend to go that route, and then there are a number of “safe” choices along the way that further channel you into a standard model and (I think) reinforce risk-aversion. So you go to the best law school you get into, even if you don’t like it the best, because ranking matters. Then you take the most prestigious 1L internship you can get, even if it’s not the most interesting to you. You do a journal because you’re supposed to, even if you’re not interested. Then you take your best 2L summer associate offer. Then you take that job. Then you stay at that job. And you’re surrounded by people who made the exact same choices and who have the same risk-aversion.

    • Do well while working for yourself is the end goal to all those achievements. Franchising or owning a string of gas stations makes you a savvy businessperson – for some reason you seem to be putting it on par with a gas station clerk. Have you asked yourself why?

      The richest person in my family owns the biggest trucking company in his region and didn’t finish college. It’s about what you do, not where you studied.

    • This might depend a bit on your hometown and family. I grew up in a fancy suburn. Tons of my friends from high school went off to get fancy degrees and fancy grad degrees and fancy jobs. Some are still there. Some left to pursue less traditional options. I have lots of friend that went Ivy or Ivy-equivalent and then just…did what made them happy.

      – several male and female friends are Ivy educated, some Ivy grad-degreed SAHPs who are deeply involved in local politics and have no plans to go back to their previous careers.
      – A good friend of mine went to an Ivy and after she took a consulting gig at MBB, she decided to work on the tall ships fleet out of Boston. She moved to Key West and is now 38 with 2 kids, a dog, and a gorgeous tan. I think she went to boatbuilding or some kind of boat restoration “finishing school” and does that for income. I think her husband is a tour guide or fisherman or perhaps both.
      – Another friend went to an elite undergrad, HYS for law school, slogged in BigLaw for 5-7 years until she was debt free and also was well on her way to owning her home outright. She now runs a non profit theatre and has nothing to do with law. Her husband is a union plumber from a blue collar town and did not go to college. He makes more than she does. They throw fantastic parties and guests are from all stagse of their lives: blue collar town, affluent suburbia, blue collar workers, ivy league ugrad and ivy law school friends with “fancy” jobs, theatre nuts and actors/actresses, neighbors and locals they have befriended over the years (they live in the city), misc. others from the nonprofit world– it’s so nice just to be around *people* and not give an F what people do or where they went to school or how much they make.

    • I am going to offer a couple of thoughts here that may or may not apply.

      I think the answer on whether someone is willing to walk away from the traditional, prestigious path or not depends on how much of their identity is tied up to that path and career and how risk-averse they are. For me, the two-Ivy degrees, the trappings of a white-collar job (nice clothes, people to help with my computer issues, not needing to be physically at the office in order to do my job) are great and I can’t imagine being a small business owner where you need to be there all the time, etc. being an improvement to my life. Also, as a child of immigrants, I’ve seen how much people struggle with small businesses (people – including employees – stealing from you or leaving you to start a competing company) and I don’t think that someone would willing to choose to struggle in that manner. For example, my in-laws own a beauty supplies store where they are at the store 6 days a week, all day long, and it is super boring and their customers aren’t always nice to them.

      A second thought comes to mind – when I’ve seen other people who have wanted to leave it all behind and do something radically different, I’ve also been skeptical because it’s typically people who have tried the BigLaw thing or MBB but can’t imagine working at a mid market place where people are not all Ivy grads, the firm doesn’t have any prestige, etc. I struggled with this myself, having worked at two international firms and to land at a smaller, regional firm that doesn’t pay as well or have the same cache. If you actually like practicing law, then why not try a different environment within a profession for which you devoted many years of training and learning? In OP’s case, maybe you’ve already tried that and have found it insufficient. But I’ve met with people who have this “Biglaw or nothing” mentality, such that they leave the profession altogether rather than trying to see if it can work out a smaller place or in-house or government or wherever. But this all assumes that you like doing the actual work of lawyering.

    • This is why I don’t want my daughters going this route.

      I went to State U and I swear people do.not.ever say this. From State U, it is OK to make insane $. And it is also OK to do what makes you happy.

      Don’t be not as open to the world as us poor State U people.

    • First of all– you might have a distorted idea of what people know or think about your job. I am not a lawyer, and I think big-law is one of those things that only seems super impressive and prestigious to people who are in it. I have tons of lawyer friends, some of whom work at firms (I have no clue which of them are big law), others government, some in house, and I don’t think any of them are more or less prestigious than another. They’re all lawyers. It’s all the same.

      That said, if a friend makes a major job change, I take my cues from that person. If she is excited and happy, I’m excited and happy for her, (unless she’s starting an MLM, at which point I roll my eyes and block her on facebook). I have worked in all kids of jobs. I am currently in finance, but I frequently joke that I’m going to quit and become a florist. If I did that, I think my friends would be happy for me because they would know that I’m happy. I would hope your friends would do the same to you. But you have to be confident in your choices, not ashamed.

    • Ginger in Tech Support :

      I learned a long time ago to do what makes you happy and fulfilled, not what others expect. I left a high profile career to basically become an IT monkey – but I love it. I don’t spend all my time stressing, I can leave my work at work. It allows me to have a much better work-life balance.

    • Anonymous :

      Not to invalidate your feelings, OP, but if you are genuinely concerned with the thought of doing something that is not traditionally considered to “prestigious” and one of the reasons why you feel that way is your Ivy League credentials, I have to say you need to broaden your horizons.

    • Anonymous :

      Are you Asian? You sound like the product of a tiger mom.

    • Anonymous :

      I have a coworker, her husband worked his way up to CFO of a F1000 company (which is a big deal in our area). After 20 years of working in corporate America, he chucked his job and used his savings to open a bar. The bar does great business, he only works on Friday and Saturday nights (he has a good staff in place for the other nights) and they are stupid happy. She’s working now so they can both have more-affordable health insurance but is going to quit once they qualify for Medicare. It seems like a great freaking model to me and now my husband and I are considering this – using some of our savings to purchase a small business in 10 years or so and one of us will run the business while the other works. There are all kinds of ways to make a life work, which I wish someone had explained to me before I got on the college-to-corporate grind track.

  7. Anonymous :

    I bought this dress from Nordstrom from a blogger’s new line, and I love it. I’m wearing it today to my big law job. The quality is high for $168. There aren’t a ton of sizes left. I sized down (usually a 6, sometimes even an 8, and I’m wearing a 4). I highly recommend it. It also comes in a white but there are even fewer of that and it would be less work appropriate.

    • Moderators, can you shut down this troll?

    • WOW that’s beautiful.

    • Anonymous :

      More Gal meets Glam plugs… nicely done, nicely done…

      • Anonymous :

        Yeah I was skeptical at first but now I think maybe Julia is coming here! Especially because it’s the same dress recommended over and over.

        • I reviewed it the first time. I just thought it was cool she made some dresses in a big size range and thought some people might appreciate an honest review. This person above is not me.

          This one is perhaps the only one I would consider wearing to work and probably still wouldn’t because even though I wear dresses almost all of the time (and scooped this up because it had sleeves), this skews a little social/fancy for my male-dominated in-house office where half of them wear jeans and fleeces or golf polos. I do still think her line has some great picks for summer social activities. Fabric is better than expected but not what I would call super high end and all but one of them was a size too big for me and a lot of the midi styles dwarf me a bit (petite, size 2ish).

          People review stuff all the time here and I thought it would be worthwhile to someone. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

          • Same. I missed your post, nutella, so I had the same thought: maybe someone would like this, especially because there are big sizes left. Do the other readers own this site? Is it really sooo annoying? I mean, come on. Y’all are grumpy.

          • I would consider this dress in the black if it was still available in my size. Pretty.

      • Yeah this is getting super annoying.

        • Really? I’m the OP and I read here pretty consistently and haven’t seen any posts about GMG. Weird.

          • And this is the OP again, and I’ll say I bought several of her dresses and didn’t like any of the others. Would Julia say that??

          • *eyeroll* there’s like one a day.

            And boo to vanity sizing. I hate vanity sizing – makes ordering online a PITA – I don’t want to have to order and return a 6 and 8 when I need a 4 because a clothing line can’t size properly. No time for that.

          • I’ve seen not only multiple posts about this line, but about this same dress. Maybe a coincidence but the skepticism is reasonable.

        • +1 There have been a bunch lately. I will say that someone’s comment in response the other day cracked me up- something to the effect of “this dress is beautiful and I’d totally wear it if my job was as a florist in a French villa.” So accurate.

    • What’s with all the Girl Meets Glam links lately? This seems fishy.

    • Every dress linked from this line looks really mormon to me. Granted I have never heard of this blog so maybe conservative is the aesthetic? I could also never imagine wearing this to work.

      • Okay, fine. Whatever, people. I don’t understand why everyone is so grumpy here.

        • Just because people don’t like your taste doesn’t mean everybody in the world is out to get you.

          There have also been a ton of posts about this lady’s new clothing line lately. Just because you missed them doesn’t mean other people are wrong to be annoyed by it.

      • Anonymous :

        What is wrong with Mormons? What if I said the dress looks really Jewish. You’d call me a racist troll.

    • It would be cute if the neck wasn’t so high. I don’t get the high neck trend, it’s uncomfortable and unflattering.

      • It’s such a classic look on someone who’s smaller up top but it really does not work for me. At least not in solid colors.

        • Same! I hate it! I have a large chest and broad shoulders and high necks look so terrible on me.

      • Edwardian inspired stuff was having a moment. I don’t get the high-waist pant trends…but it take all kinds. I don’t think it’s that hard to understand.

    • This is getting really rich. Someone in the blogging community must have a mental illness/drinking problem.

  8. Anonymous :

    What do you put in an interview thank you note? Thank them for their time and considering you? Reiterate your interest in the position? It should not be long, right?

    • Anonymous :

      All of that is good. If you discussed something in particular you can say something like”I especially enjoyed hearing about your work on X project.” If you are sending multiple notes to different people at the same company try to vary them a bit.

    • Clementine :

      “thank you for taking the time to meet with me and further discuss X positition. I am very interested in (cool things you discussed that company has going on) and hope to have an opportunity to work together in the future. Please let me know if i can provide any further information.

      • Lana Del Raygun :

        Yeah, ideally you want to include something you learned in the interview, so they can tell that you got a better sense of the position and still want it because of what you know now.

  9. Shared Calendar App? :

    What app do people use to share a calendar with your spouse/partner?

    • Anonymous :

      We use google calendar. You can change the settings to share your calendar with others and put each calendar in a different color. If we want an event on both calendars, one of us creates it and just invites the other. It works really well for us.

      • +1 exactly this. Each kid has their own color too. Even the infants – it’s nice to see their doctor’s appointments or babysitter arrangements as belonging to “kid” instead of one parent, which helps keep us on our toes about shared responsibilities.

        • Lana Del Raygun :

          Can you add multiple colors (like multiple colored labels in Gmail) for things that involve more than one kid?

          • KateMiddletown :

            You could create a “teens” and “infants” or whatever, or you can just layer them and create the appointment for all parties. My 8 y/o doesn’t have email (obviously) so I just put the appt on her calendar and duplicate it to mine/husbands. Our school is blessedly 21st century so they have a Gcal so you can dupe appts to her calendar and then hide the calendar unless you want to see it.

      • Baconpancakes :

        Same. The only time this system fails is when I forget to invite my SO to an event, and he hides my calendar.

    • Anonymous :

      The “family calendar” feature that apple has when you link accounts. We don’t have kids, so I don’t need much more than this right now.

    • We don’t use an app, we use Skype. Sometimes during lunch we will have calendar meetings where we go over our evening and weekend schedules for the next few weeks. We have a paper calendar in the kitchen that mostly has kiddo’s activities on it and if they are on duty at church. If my church schedule is unusual I put it there too.

    • KateMiddletown :

      To take this 1 step further even though you didn’t ask, I use Outlook Calendar @ work exclusively, and invite myself (Gmail address) to any quasi-personal or out of normal working hours appts. (and vice versa when on the gcal platform.) On my iphone (only have 1 for work/personal), I have both and use Google Calendar to acccess Google Calendar (obvs) and iCal/apple calendar to access my Outlook.

      The only thing I haven’t figured out is how to get my shared Outlook calendars on my phone – I share w/ my work team and this doesn’t seem to be available unless going thru VPN. Anybody have this issue?

  10. Anon for this :

    If you had a drunken one night stand would you tell your spouse? Assume you love your spouse and don’t want a divorce, you have kids and you’ve been tested for STDs and are clean.

    • Lana Del Raygun :

      Yes. If I betrayed my husband’s trust in such a major way, I would feel obligated to tell him, and if I didn’t, it would become a weird chasm between us in the long run. And I know he would rather know than not, even though it would break his heart.

    • Anonymous :

      I think it depends on the person.

      For me, it would utterly destroy my partner and therefore my marriage, and the only “benefit” is relieving my guilt. So…. no if I don’t want to lose my marriage. I would not tell.

      But I would make myself start some counseling or do something big to figure out what the heck happened and honestly pursue whether I should be in this marriage.

      • +1 to all of this. I think that you don’t tell if the only reason to tell is relieving your own guilt. That said, I don’t think you end up having a one-night stand of any variety unless something is very wrong in your marriage and/or your emotional life. Take it as a wake up call of the most significant variety, and start working on fixing what’s wrong so that you don’t betray your partner and your own principles in this way again.

      • Do you want to get divorced? If not, then don’t tell him. It might make you feel better in the short term; but the likelihood is that your marriage will never be the same – and not in a good way. I would second the advice to take a long, hard look at WHY you did it (without necessarily agreeing that it absolutely means that there is something wrong with your marriage).

        People cheat on their spouses for a lot of reasons. Some of those mean that they are not getting their needs met within their marriage. Some of those mean that they lack impulse control (particularly after a few drinks) and decided to indulge without considering morality or consequences. If you fit in the latter category, then recognize your weakness and avoid putting yourself in that situation again. In my view, you only get one free pass.

    • Yes, although it would shatter me to lose him.

    • Why did you do it? Do you have an alcohol problem? Are you insecure? Are you mad at your spouse? Why did you even put yourself in the situation to begin with where the guy was able to f you and thought it was ok?

      • KateMiddletown :

        I have a Major problem with your last question.

        • Never too many shoes... :


        • Except that it’s a question that should be asked.

          (The OP has done nothing to indicate that this was not volitional, so proceed with the following as applying to volitional s*xual encounters.)

          No one just winds up naked and in bed with someone else. It’s not like a waiter knocking a drink into your lap – this isn’t “whoops.” There’s a whole series of events that transpired before this. At various points throughout it, before the clothes came off and the c*ndom went on, there were ways to stop it. (Again, NOT talking about non-volitional encounters here.)

          Adults have responsibilities, and feminism doesn’t mean that we get to have things “just happen” to us without anyone questioning our decision-making. Sometime or another, the OP could have called an Uber – or even her husband – and put the brakes on this whole thing.

          If she actually does not want this to happen again, maybe she needs to think about the whole situation and identify the many points at which she could have – and should have – stopped it.

      • Ha! Too bad!

    • If I had a drunken one night stand it would be a sign something is very wrong with me and my marriage, so yes I would.

    • I think it depends on who you cheated with. If it was out of town on a business trip with someone who didn’t know my last name then it’s pretty much guaranteed my husband wouldnt find out unless I told him and I might choose not to share (but I would get counseling and work on myself as someone said above). BUT if it was a friend or coworker or someone like that who might tell DH then I think I’d feel no choice but to tell him because it would be so much worse if he found out and it wasn’t from me.

    • Anon for this :

      Voice of experience here. Hell no. You would be hurting your spouse just to relieve your own guilt – and honestly I didn’t even feel guilty about it. It was years ago, we are still happily married, and it was just a random thing.

      • +1.

      • Another anon :


      • I feel so bad for your poor spouse, since apparently you have so little respect for them that you feel entitled to cheat on them and hide it for years. They are entitled to operate with as much information as you are when it comes to your relationship, FYI.

        • I’m not any of the anons above but I have straight up told my husband that if he cheats with someone I don’t know and it’s a onetime thing I don’t want to know (a long term affair or a fling with one of my friends is a different story). I’m not sure you’re doing your spouse a kindness by telling them. I think most people tell to relieve their own guilt and transfer the emotional burden to their spouse.

          • +1

          • Lana Del Raygun :

            I get where you’re coming from, but “I don’t even feel guilty … it was just a random thing” is pretty stinkin’ callous.

          • Yep.
            A full-on affair with emotions involved, yeah I would want to know and yeah I would be angry and probably we would get divorced. I actually feel this way if I find out he had an emotional affair with someone that got emotionally serious but not physical.
            A one-night stand, let’s say he’s maybe on the road, it’s just once, he never intends to see the person again, no numbers are exchanged, c*ndoms got used, etc. – I don’t want to know. To me that’s not worth blowing up my marriage and my whole life (and my child’s whole life) over. It would be hard for me to get over it so I would rather just stay ignorant.

        • Not those people, but having been there (with a bf) and told, it was absolutely the wrong thing to do in hindsight even though it seemed like the right thing to do at the time.

        • Agree. It’s rather self-serving to say that you only hurt your spouse by telling him; they deserve to know.

      • In-house in Houston :


      • +1

    • Never too many shoes... :

      Hell to the no. If it was just a drunken mistake and you want to stay married, then it is your burden to bear.

    • In-house in Houston :

      No. It would destroy him and the marriage. If you think you need to clear your conscious, go see a priest or minister or whoever. But take it to the grave.

    • Well, yes. I would have to be thoughtful about when and how, and would probably see a therapist in advance to help plan this out, but I would tell. We’ve been married 10 years, have 2 kids and one on the way. We have a long time left together and I KNOW that one day it would come out. Not on purpose, but just *somehow* these things come around eventually. I would want to be honest and get in front of it, and do so with a plan.

      I would NOT do it like, the week after. Depending on what the therapist suggests of course, but my gut says give it a “cooling off” period, plan some time (like a weekend away) to disclose and have him process/hash it out/discuss options.

      That’s what I would want out of my partner, because no matter how sneaky he thinks he is about things, I always find out (not stuff like this- just…misc things he thinks I’d never find out about).

      • Don’t go on a trip out of town and spring cheating on someone…if you are going to tell, then he at least deserves an easy out to get away from you.

    • No, but I know that I can be a floozy when I drink so I haven’t gotten drunk for a few years. Really! This rings especially true if I was drinking without my spouse around. Don’t put yourself in the situation where cheating is a possibility.

      • Anon for this :

        Thanks Mike Pence for your valuable insight.

        • Never too many shoes... :

          Ba ha ha. This is not a funny topic but that comment was hilarious.

        • Eyeroll. No. If you don’t want to cheat on your spouse, then don’t do things that will lead you cheat on your spouse. Like drink. She wasn’t saying “not hang out with people of the opposite gender because I have no self control and don’t want the image problem of spending one on one time with someone not my wife”

          She was saying “Don’t take substances that inhibit your decision making abilities if you know those substances are a problem for you”. It’s not that hard.

          • I suppose someone will have a “real problem” with this comment as well.

          • Lana Del Raygun :

            Seriously! There’s nothing wrong with deliberately avoiding situations that raise the probability of doing the wrong thing. In fact, avoiding those situations is itself part of doing the right thing.

        • Ugh no I hate this comment. Mike Pence is gross but there is nothing wrong with choosing not to drink yourself so you can make healthier decisions. It is totally different than what Pence does (not meeting with people of the opposite gender outside of work), which has negative consequences to others. Not drinking has no consequences to anyone but yourself.

          When I was dating my now husband, we were long distance. I got drunk with a male buddy and some of his friends and let his friends get flirty and a little handsy with me. Nothing really happened but the next morning I felt bad. I would not have wanted my husband behaving that way with random girls and while I dont think I “cheated” I didn’t think my behavior was appropriate for someone in a relationship. I made the decision to drink less in general and not to drink with guys unless my husband was there. That was 10 years ago and I have no regrets. It’s helped me make better decisions and probably behave more professionally around co-workers. (Fwiw my husband occasionally drinks with other women when I’m not around and I have no problem with it – I don’t think alcohol has the same effect on his decision making that it does on mine. You need to do what’s right for you and this is right for me.)

    • Frozen Peach :

      Dan Savage has some excellent writing about this subject. Go check out the Savage Love archives.

    • Anon for this :

      Having been the spouse who was cheated on in a drunken supposedly-one-night stand, I feel differently than most of the posters. (My comments are based upon the assumption that the act is consensual obviously).

      I actually walked in on my cheating spouse and the other person, and months later, when we were still in counseling and trying to make things work, my then-husband admitted that he hadn’t planned on telling me. That admission hurt quite a bit, almost as much as the betraying act, because it meant that he didn’t 1) think it was a big deal 2) think I deserved to know despite our vows of honesty etc and 3) didn’t trust me to make a decision based upon that information as an independent adult who was an equal part of the marriage. Hurtful, condescending, disrespectful, dishonest. “Relieving your own guilt” is NOT the only reason to tell your partner, and if you seriously think that’s the only reason, it seems to me to underscore your own selfishness and myopic view.

      I think the commenter who said that a one-night stand does not “absolutely mean that there is something wrong with your marriage” is also incorrect. Perhaps there isn’t anything horribly wrong about the marriage as a whole or your spouse, but there is something pretty damn wrong with the cheater. Lots of possible issues, i.e. that the cheating spouse doesn’t respect their partner, has incredibly poor decision-making skills, doesn’t keep commitments, is dishonest, or quite frankly has a skewed moral compass.

      I completely agree with PP who said that there are a lot of steps between two people hanging out and two people having sex. The cheating spouse here really needs to examine themselves and figure out why on earth they didn’t stop things at step a,b,c, or even x for God’s sake. Unless you have a prior agreement to sexual openness in this fashion, that sort of behavior is pretty explicitly not part of a working marriage.

      • Anon for this :

        Also “if you want to stay in the marriage, don’t tell” again sounds to me like you’re just putting your own needs/wants selfishly first, rather than giving your partner the benefit of choice. Your desire to stay in the marriage and not face the consequences of your actions should not be the motivating factor in the decision to tell or not.

      • All of this and a bag of chips. Round of applause. I 100% agree with you.

  11. Where is the best place online to resell a genuine designer bag? I purchased a navy Chanel Cloquee Flap Bag (swoon!) at a recent charity gala silent auction but, upon second thought, cannot afford to spend four figures on a purse. I got it for about 1/3 of retail so I’m fairly confident I can make my money back. It feels like the RealReal takes a pretty hefty commission chunk, but is that my best bet? Ebay? Poshmark? This bag is gorgeous but I simply cannot justify it. Boo.

  12. Unsolicited shoe review: I ordered these heels based off of comments on this s!te, the Rockport Total Motion heels may be the most comfortable heels I’ve ever worn. I’m super picky about shoe comfort and I’m wearing these heels today at work for no reason (this is a really high endorsement). Unrelated question: does anyone keep a personal humidifier at or near their desk? My skin gets super dry at work and was thinking about ordering one

    • Yes, I have a little USB one, but I’m honestly not sure it makes much of a difference, but that might be because the air is SO dry in our office. YMMV. But it was like $11 on Am a z0ne so doesn’t hurt to give it a try! Someone else in my office has a full blown one similar to what you see in baby’s rooms, but I didn’t want to have to deal with the cleaning of the parts, so this one does fine. (It is like a small cup you fill and stick the filter on top, so cleaning is pretty much just the cup and you get some extra filter sticks.)

    • Totally agree on those Rockports, and own a couple pairs after reading about them on this site.

      I have thought about getting a small humidifier, and think it is a great idea. But realized that in my big open work environment and because I am up and around so much it is less helpful. It is a little bit of a pain to do the maintenance at work, and would recommend getting one of those anti-microbial solutions when refilling to try to extend the time between cleanings/filter changes.

      But I love the Gold Bond hand sanitizer I got that online that is really a nice lotion.

  13. Anyone have recs on where to stay for a week in Berlin? I usually prefer commercial areas that are adjacent to (but not in) the tourist zone. Basically the ideal would be a local shopping area with bigger luxury hotels and less than 2 miles from the tourist zone. I’ve been looking at Potsdamer Platz?

    • A few years back, my husband and I stayed at the Wombats Hostel near the Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz subway stop. I LOVED the location and it should fit your requirements nicely. I’d look for a hotel around there.

    • Potsdamer Platz is near two malls, but Zoologischer Garten ist closer to the street with designer stores. Further east, maybe Hackescher Markt or Brunnenstraße, you’ll find smaller, independent labels. All the places I’m naming are also train stations btw. The main tourist highlights are either walkable from there or 15 min on public transport.

      • I stayed at the Ritz at Pottsdamer Platz and liked it. At the time it was a decent deal (around $350/night) so it’s worth checking out.

    • Stay in Mitte!

  14. Jardigan Stain :

    I have and love a taupe jardigan from MML. My toddler recently gave me a spaghetti hug, leaving marinara fingerprints on the sleeve. I have taken it to the cleaners, but the stain remains. Any advice on how to get spaghetti sauce out of a jardigan?

    • KateMiddletown :

      Take it back to the cleaners! They needed to spot treat it and didn’t – they should be able to handle something simple like that.

  15. Warning : diet question :

    Anyone have any luck losing weight while relaxing with dieting on the weekends? I’ve been stuck on a spiral for months now where I manage to derail all my progress every weekend. I’m not eating like a maniac just want to be able to have a restaurant meal or a home cooked meal once or twice per weekend and it’s derailed all my weekly progress. I always try to sneak in a long run to offset calories but that’s not enough I guess. I know the answer is to just eat like I do on weekdays but it’s not really possible with my lifestyle.

    • What about keeping your normal routine on weekdays, and switching to intermittent fasting for the weekend? E.g., eat what you want, but only during an 8 hour period – 12 PM – 8 PM or whatever lets you squeeze the most pleasure out of your schedule.

    • Honestly, check out intuitive eating. The diet spiral is never going to go away and it’s going to wear you down over time (plus mess with your metabolism). Real Life RD has some good resources to get started.

      • Ugh, “intuitive eating” aka how to be plus sized

        • wow, what a trollish comment

        • Not that there’s necessarily anything wrong with being plus sized, but this is total b.s. I’ve used intuitive eating in the last several years and gone from a size 12 to a 6.

        • Yeah, no.

          • Also Anon at 11:18 clearly has no idea how intuitive eating works.

            Intuitive eating in my real life: got home from yoga last night and was really craving plants after having eaten a lot of animal protein over the weekend, so subbed out chicken for chickpeas on the salad I was planning to eat.

            And I’m nowhere near plus sized, if that will make the Anons listen to me more.

        • Anonymous :

          I “eat intuitively” (aka just…eat) and I’m a size 2. Just because you shove everything in front of you in your face, Anon at 11:18am, doesn’t mean the rest of us do! Mwah!

      • I know this works for some people but I really don’t think it works for restaurant meals. It’s not just about portion; they add so much crap that you wouldn’t add at home. Like, I eat steak at home once a week but I don’t add butter and ALL THE SALT. My body doesn’t know that 4 oz of steak at a restaurant is different than 4 oz of steak at home.

        Also doesn’t work if you’re staying out late. If I’m still up after midnight, I’m intuitively hungry – it’s been 4-6 hours since I last ate, time for another meal! But no I definitely have not burned enough extra calories to eat another meal at that hour.

    • I eat out most Saturday nights with friends. In our mid-thirties most of us order an appetizer as a starter and another appetizer as an entree. Usually just one drink with major calories and switch to vodka soda or similar thereafter.

      If you’re strict enough during the week, ending out on the weekends shouldn’t derail you. And for eating at home, I’ve accepted that I just can’t eat as much as I did in my 20s so my caprese now features half as much fresh mozzarella and twice as much tomatoes and fresh basil.

      • Another anon :

        OP, I struggle with this as well.

        This is basically what I have to do too – in my mid/late 30’s I simply need to eat fewer calories and eat a larger portion of lower calorie foods as a percentage of my overall meal (half plate of veggies, quarter plate of protein, quarter plate of carb). This has been a kind of terrible realization as I really do love to eat.

        • I’ve run into trouble with cutting calories in that it made it hard for me to maintain my weight. I have always been used to eating a lot and often. What I’ve had to do was change what foods I was eating. As long as I eat clean foods and not so many grains/fruits/sugar, I can keep the same amount of calories.

    • I don’t know if you’d consider WW Freestyle but I really like the flexibility. I basically constantly go over my weekly points and fitpoints, but the tracking really helps me stay reasonable. I am still losing weight (albeit slowly). I don’t have a ton to lose and this relaxed pace is really working for me because it doesn’t feel like dieting so much as just paying attention. (Using something like MFP and counting calories felt restrictive and difficult to me and I did not keep up with it.)

    • Yes, it just takes time.

    • How many calories are you drinking? That’s how they tend to sneak in, for me.

    • Unsolicited advice: if a single restaurant meal, slightly heavier home cooked meal or 2-3 drinks on a weekend day is derailing your progress, you may be trying to lose more weight than is healthy for your body. Alternatively, you’re fooling yourself about how much you’re really eating, which leads me to…

      Solicited advice: yes, I have lost 16 pounds in 9 weeks on WW Freestyle while having one day a week where I still track but eat or drink anything I want. I stay within my daily points target on the other days, so I suspect I’m just eating my weekly extra points on that one day. I am married with two daughters, and we eat dinner together every night. Because I don’t want my daughters to see mom eating differently, we eat the same meals – this hasn’t been a problem for me on the plan. I’ve done WW before, and this new plan is working much better for me — it feels much more like an actual lifestyle switch than a diet.

    • No, not after 30, not for losing weight anyway. What you’re describing is my weight maintenance schedule. If I want to lose then I need to keep my diet in check on the weekends too. It’s definitely a struggle just to break even on weekends. For restaurant meals, I skip apps or get something like hummus with raw veggies so I have something to munch on while everyone else is eating nachos. Then I usually get fish or chicken for my main.

      A lot of my friends eat apps for their main, but you have to really be careful with the apps – they can be calorie bombs even if they look healthy. One local restaurant has lettuce wraps, sounds healthy right? Yeah I got hold of the recipe and tracked everything… it’s close to 1k calories. For the chicken version. Beware anything with a sauce or glaze. You’d basically be better off (and less hungry!) getting a burger.

    • Frozen Peach :

      Check out Intermittent Fasting or the 5:2 diet. I have been eating this way for about 9 months, have lost 20 lbs, have had a lot of other health benefits– GI issues resolved, skin clearer, less inflammation.

      I usually fast 2 or 3 days during the week and then eat what I want, within reason, on the weekends. I do not find that this plan causes me to binge or eat ridiculous things on my eating days. My palate has changed and seems much more directly connected to what nutrients I need. And my stomach has shrunk, so I get full much faster and eat portions that are 1/3 the size I used to.

    • Anonymous :

      Are you tracking calories? For me the only thing that works is to carefully track and then allow for indulgences on the weekend. That means being very strict during the week and also not having 3 cheat meals on both Saturday and Sunday. It means choosing one cheat meal. I will still go out to eat, but will make sure it fits within my calorie range. And I make sure to work out harder, but I don’t think that actually helps as much as calorie counting.

    • If your current weekly routine isn’t working for you, I would suggest being more analytical about it. Take the time for a few weeks to assess how many calories you are over maintenance on the weekends, and then you’ll know how many tweaks you need in order to offset. Maybe a run isn’t enough, but a slightly lighter weekend breakfast, plus an extra hour of activity on Sunday, plus a reduction in liquid calories would be. I find this approach much easier to maintain than skipping meals- and you aren’t guessing, you’re balancing. Also, since you enjoy your weekends so much, I think it’s a good goal to balance your eating and activity on those days, instead of making them active weight loss days. You can just press pause on the weekends without going backward away from your weight loss goals.

    • Track your calories over a few weekends and see just how many calories those meals out (including drinks) are setting you back. It will give you perspective on whether your weekends are sabotaging your weeks. I was def guilty of this and once I started making some changes, I saw vast improvement.

      You don’t need to change your lifestyle, but after monitoring the caloric intake, start making small changes like drink less wine, skip the bottomless mimosas, slow down on the chips and salsa, and choose lighter meals.

  16. Has anyone tried Everlane’s “work pant” that can review them? The price is right but I’m not sure I like how much they basically look like a ponte legging type pant with an exposed zipper. I really like MM LaFleur Oshima’s pants but those are 4x the price!

    • Marshmallow :

      I didn’t try them on but saw a bunch of other customers trying them on in the store. They don’t look like leggings, exactly, but they look TIGHT. Very Sandy from Grease.

    • Anonymous :

      Hope you’re still reading! I bought them, one size up from my usual size. They are mostly cotton, so more like chinos than ponte pants in look and texture.

      I like them. They’re very comfortable. I’m a pear and these are the first pair of chino-type pants that I’ve been able to tuck a button-down into and have it stay in place — the high, tailored waist and slight stretch are what make it work. It took me a while to get used to the look — for some reason the high waist and lack of pockets makes my rear feel very exposed! But now I’m used to them I think they’re quite flattering.

  17. casual creative summer capsule :

    Want to help me build a creative casual summer capsule wardrobe? I don’t know what to wear to work in the warmer months.

    Some context: I work in a super casual office. In the winter, it’s easy. I typically wear skinny jeans with oversized blazers and ankle boots. Guys are typically in nice sneakers with jeans and Ts/button-downs, but women are all over the place. Basically, anything goes. Which is nice in some respects, but difficult in others.

    I want to somehow look pulled-together, professional, and stylish while staying cool and comfortable.
    Dresses would seem to be the answer, but what kind? I feel frumpy in a shirtdress. Most maxis are too casual.

    I love the cropped and high-waisted pant trend in theory, but in reality pants are so difficult to fit, especially on my extreme pear body.

    I typically shop at Zara, TopShop, Nordstrom, Uniqlo, and Nordstrom Rack.

    I aspire to dress like the blogger See Anna Jane, except I am neither rich nor tall, thin and leggy, so… there are some limitations. But that should give you a sense of my style.

    Budget is $500. Where would you shop and what would you get?

    • Ginger in Tech Support :

      I’m a fan of the scuba material skirts and dresses. They hold a nice shape, and are super comfortable. It’s already creeping on 90 where I live, and a skirt is a life saver for my commute.

    • I do a ton of dresses in the summer. I like Boden as it’s colorful and fun, but still appropriate for a workplace. Most styles can be dressed up with heels and a blazer, or down with flat sandals and a cardigan. I’ve also had good luck at Banana Republic Factory and Lands End. I try to keep the dress more “work-ish” and let my accessories be more fun and summer-y (I dislike seeing floaty, spaghetti strap sundresses in the office, and that seems to be a common mistake, YMMV). These seem to find a good balance, and are still plenty lightweight and comfortable.

    • Nordstrom Rack. I have several Max Studio dresses from there that work for my super casual office. Also Land’s End. I love the fit and flare dresses.

      I also wear ponte knit ankle pants, flats and a printed sleeveless top. I wear a 3/4 cardigan b/c it gets cold in the office.

    • Anonymous :

      For an extreme pear, definitely try eShakti. They have nice cotton and very generous skirts to their dresses while still being fitted and shaped on top. Unless you hate fitted tops, it seriously feels like wearing sweatpants with your fav fitted tee. The only trouble I’ve had with this outfit is finding shoes that are comfy but look good with knee-length dresses. I settled on a pair of very lightly bedazzled Antonio Melani flat loafers that have a shaped, almost athletic, sole. But if your office is casual you can do sandals or really any kind of shoe.

  18. Looking for a simple grey a-line skirt, machine washable, for a workwear staple. Any recs? Under $100, ideally closer to $50.

  19. Does anyone know when the Christmas markets start in Germany? Or have a reliable resource for figuring this out? I’ve found a lot of conflicting dates online; I know different cities start on different dates but I’m finding different dates for the same city. I’m hoping to go the week after Thanksgiving but I’m not sure if that’s too early? Thanks!

    • Usually either last week of November or first week of December. Try searching the city name and “stadt” which should get you the town/city hall site. Or check the main Germany tourist site as the markets are popular with tourists.

    • All I know is my parents are going the first week of Dec.

    • The major cities should be open, since it’s almost December. But smaller towns often have more limited times for their Christmas market.
      Where do you want to go?

      • I’d like to make a road trip of it, so I want to hit the major cities but also the little towns along the Romantic Road, like Rothenburg. It’ll likely be a solo trip fwiw.

        • It looks like Rothenburg, Nuremberg and Wuerzburg all open on Nov 30, while Dresden opens Nov 28. Since Nov 30 is a Friday, that’s probably when most of them open. The bigger cities likely have more than one market. Some are more kitschy, or sell lots of craftsmen-y merchandise, and others are focused on food or rides. You can google for the city and “Weihnachtsmarkt 2018” to be sure.

          • This is the right answer. The openings are usually tied to the date of the first Advent Sunday, e.g. the Friday before. So you can generally use last year’s dates to extrapolate that way if there’s no 2018 info yet.

        • I recommend Salzburg below but cartoon hearts just exploded out of my eyes thinking about Rothenburg at Christmas. Do anything you can to attend the Wednesday night English Language club at Altfränkische Weinstube and have dinner with Hermann the German. Nuremberg has great markets and will also be wonderful at Christmas.

    • When I worked in Germany, the Dusseldorf one started after the 3rd week of November.
      Also, there isn’t one market, there are a few in Dusseldorf.

    • I think the dates the markets open are in all the guide books and probably on trip advisor.

    • Munich’s market is open Nov. 22-Christmas at the Marienplatz. Don’t overlook the Salzburg region, the Christkindlmarkt is open 4 weeks starting Nov 22nd. St. Gilgen and St. Wolfgang both host markets in idyllic Salzkammergut, the lakes region near Salzburg, Austria. You could also venture out to Hallstatt (market on December 8th). Krampus runs should be the first week of December, too.

  20. Thistledown :

    I’m applying for a job and realized the company has zero women in leadership positions. Their website has 10 employees listed – the president, SVPs, and VPs. None of them are women. Not one! I did some more digging (I work of a sister company & have access to their entire org chart.) Their workforce is 38% women overall with 2 female managers and 1 female supervisor. How freaked-out should I be? Can I bring this up in the interview? Try to get in touch with some of the women to ask about company culture? I wouldn’t be as worried if there were 1-2 women above the director level, but having none just seems insane to me. One of the big things I’m looking for in this role is opportunities for growth and mentoring.

    • Ginger in Tech Support :

      I’ve always worked in male dominated industries, and I would absolutely reach out to women in your network (and network adjacent) who work there and ask about it. I made the mistake of not doing that at my last job, and regretted it.

      • Thistledown :

        What I’ve heard so far is that it’s definitely a boys club, so I think I’m going to contact the female managers/supervisors. Any ideas on what to ask? I’m not sure how to get people to open up.

    • How big is the company? I’ve worked for a small (>40 people) company run by men and it was great. My input as a young woman was requested and valued. I currently work for a multinational company who employs a lot of women in leadership but my office culture is toxic. I say bring it up in the interview: Not in a judgmental way but in a curious way. Ask questions! Maybe they’re aware of this and want to fix. Their answers can tell you a lot. Good luck!

      • That should say <40. Time for more coffee.

      • Thistledown :

        The new company has about 80 people. I think it will really come down to the interview. If their response is “women just don’t want to be leaders,” I’m out of there. I’m hoping they say “yes, this is a problem and we’re doing x,y, z to fix it.”

    • This is super common. I wish it were different but it’s not. So, I’m not sure I get the question. How freaked-out should you be about what? I don’t see this as a sign that there’s some kind of rampant sexual harassment problem, if that’s what worries you. I see it as a sign that this is not your forever-job if a director position is what you want someday. That doesn’t mean it’s not a growth opportunity for right now, depending on where you are in your career.

    • Honestly, that would be a big enough deal for me that I’d bring it up in the interview. Interviews are two-way streets, after all. I don’t think I’d want to work at a place like that, at least if they didn’t have a thoughtful answer to questions about it.

    • Thistledown :

      I talked with two of the female managers. Their input was that it is “a little bit of a boys club,” but that the company has been very proactive about providing professional development for the women it does have and is working on enhancing leadership opportunities for women. Also, the person I would report to is definitely *not* part of that boys club. It all also sounded very positive, but I think it’s still worth bringing-up at an interview. If I make it that far in the process, I would be very interested to hear their response.

  21. Ginger in Tech Support :

    Any leads on professional looking lanyards? I want something nicer than the free ones I get from vendors, or my current Batgirl one. I’d prefer to stay away from the plastic jeweled ones – they make my neck itch.

    • Kate Spade and Coach both make leather ones, some more professional than others though, Amazon and Etsy both have plain pleather/leather ones and there are also once fashioned to look like jewelry. Vera Bradley also makes cotton ones. I don’t know if they qualify as professional but I don’t think they’re not, necessarily.

    • I think the most professional ones are the plain old boring ones you get from your office, conferences, or vendors. I searched for them quite a few times, but the decorative ones all looked silly in real life.

    • Lots of people in my office (engineering) wear lanyards from their colleges, plain black lanyards, or the company branded retractable clip. I use the clip since I wear jeans most of the time, but I’m considering using one of my old lanyards from college since I’ll be wearing dresses more in the summer.

      • yup, college lanyard. Or, in academia, previous institution’s lanyard (If everyone is on 2-year contracts everywhere, this isn’t seen as disloyal).

    • Mrs. Jones :

      I got a chevron-print fabric one on Etsy.

  22. Shopping SOS :

    If anyone can help me find this, it’s y’all.

    I am looking for a party favor that’s very specific– fuzzy, colored bear ear headbands. Long story as to why I need them. The only things I’ve found are an $80 handcrafted set of $10 on etsy. I am looking for low quality, low price for an event. So far Amazon and oriental trading and google shopping have failed me. HALP!

  23. paging Patriots fans :

    This is classic Bellicheck (cannot spell that man’s name), no?

  24. Writing sample - lateral associate :

    I was asked to provide a writing sample after an interview for a lateral associate position (small firm to small firm). The best, least edited sample of my work I can provide is not from a public filing but rather an arbitration brief. Is that ok to provide, after redacting any client/personally identifiable information?

    • Anonymous :

      Can you really redact enough to remove any potential client identifying information without losing the context and content? If so, I would maybe, maybe consider it. But just removing the names, when it is still clear who the client is, is not sufficient. I would really judge someone’s judgment if I got a writing sample like that.

      I would strongly recommend finding a public filing. Maybe just the legal analysis section of the arbitration brief would be ok, but I find it hard to believe that you could have a compelling writing sample that didn’t include identifying information.

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