Weekend Open Thread

3" chino shortSomething on your mind? Chat about it here.

I forget where I saw it, but I recently saw a picture of Kelly Ripa in her favorite weekend garb: apparently these neon pink chino shorts from J.Crew. They didn’t look overly bright or crazy at all — just kind of perfect with a simple white t-shirt.  J.Crew makes them in a LOT of different colors, as well as different lengths — these are 3″, but they’re also in 4″, 5″, and — only available online — 7″ and 9″ chino shorts. The 3″ neon pink ones are $44. 3″ chino short



  1. onehsancare :

    I hope it’s not a bad omen that I made my first cup of coffee in my tea mug not my coffee mug. The good news is I made it from the kitchen through the cubes back to my office without spilling any. Batting .500.

    • Mountain Girl :

      If you are wearing anything white and still made it without spilling you get extra points.

    • I’m not sure I understand why it matters that you made coffee in your tea mug. What am I missing here?

      • Ugh, tea residue in my coffee and coffee residue in my tea. Ugh.

      • Either onehsancare is very particular about which mug she uses for which beverage or she does not actually wash her mugs between uses.

        • Anon in Canada :

          Once upon a time, DH and I didn’t have time to buy coffee beans and drank chai and Earl Gray from our travel mugs for the rest of the week.

          The following week, our coffee tasted very strongly of bergamot and cinnamon. And yes, we washed the travel mugs between uses. True story.

      • I thought maybe the coffee mug was larger, and that’s why she was so happy she didn’t spill!

      • Research, Not Law :

        I’m a tea drinker; Husband is a coffee drinker. Occasionally we grab the wrong travel mug, and it’s really gross for both of us. The mugs are washed regularly – the flavors just linger.

      • Yes, tea drinker here and I hate having tea in mugs that taste like stale coffee, which they usually do if they’ve been used for coffee. Drives me insane when my hubby uses my tea mug for coffee or if I go to a restaurant and the mug tastes like coffee. I purposely bought the most floral, girly-girly mugs so hubby won’t use mine. I don’t like the taste of coffee drinks, though I love Haagen-Dazs coffee flavored ice cream and coffee-flavored flan or creme brulee.

  2. cornellian :

    have and love these shorts in two colors. Mine are a size 2 and I’d probalby go with 0 if I ordered again at 5’4 128 ish, FWIW.

  3. After being bummed on missing out the Bay Area meet-up, are there any ‘Rettes in Northern California (non-Bay Area)? Sacramento and surrounding regions?

  4. Midwesterner :

    I finally swore off shorts this summer. I’m 32 years old and just do not feel cute/feminine/comfortable in them. Because I’m pretty lazy on the weekends about hair and make-up, I figure I look much better in a sun dress or maxi dress.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      I gave up shorts years ago and am happier for it. I am in pretty good shape, but something about shorts of any style on me makes me think my thighs look huge. I see women of smaller, same, and bigger, and much bigger sizes of all different builds than me looking great in shorts, but for me, skirts only.

      • cornellian :

        I went through this phase and J Crew pulled me out of it this season. I’ve been trying to pair more substantial and conservative tops with my shorts, which somehow makes them look less like they belong on a 12 year old to me. I have a loosebutton down that my neighbor refers to as my summer outfit.

      • Yep, shorts make me feel like I’m walking around on a pair of chicken drumsticks instead of legs.

    • I feel much more comfortable in sundresses and skirts too. I only wear shorts now to work out.

      • Actualy, these kind of short’s I CAN wear b/c they are not to tight. I will be geting some like these for The BEACH, b/c my tuchus is to big to wear JUST the cute bikini bottom’s alone and I do NOT want to call EVEN more attention to my tuchus at the beach, so shorts is the way to GO.

        The manageing partner will NOT aprove this b/c this is NOT work atire, so I have to pay 100% myself for short’s and halter top’s. Not a bad deal, b/c the big ticket items — skirt’s, suit’s, blouse’s and shoe’s, he WILL pick up the tab for (at 20% that is).

        So anyway, the MANAGEING partner is leting us all go at 4 for the weekend, and I am going RIGHT over to Lord and Taylor’s b/f I go home. There is a good sale going on and I need a new skirt. HAPPY FRIDAY! YAY!

    • Research, Not Law :

      Sigh. I did the same a couple of years ago. The summer J Crew catalog always makes me sad, but shorts just aren’t right for me.

    • Anon Analyst :

      Yep, I’m in my mid-thirties and I stopped wearing shorts a few years ago. Unless I’m lounging around the house or working out. Actually, I do have one pair of white knee length shorts that are more dressy and appropriate for casual Friday’s at my office.

      I’ve been seeing lots of cute looking shorts in stores and I’m tempted to try to incorporate more casual shorts into my wardrobe.

      I wear dresses the majority of the time in the summer b/c I’m lazy it’s nice to just have to worry about one item of clothing.

      • Too funny–I’ve been trying to wear more shorts, fewer dresses and skirts, because I want to be able to work out and also to jump into spontaneous games of soccer, basketball, chase, etc. with my son. I go into a store with all good intentions of buying shorts to wear for momming around town and am inevitably drawn to the sundresses–just the opposite of you!

    • Also not a shorts fan – much happier in casual skirts/dresses. I have a few old pairs that I will only wear around the house, but I do sort of like the bermuda style longer shorts – they don’t ride up and don’t cut me off right at that wide part of my thigh.

    • Anonymous :

      I am also in my 30s but i have been off shorts since, probably college. I’m a pear, and my thighs have always been my thickest/widest point, and i just always hated that feeling of something riding up btween my legs, and always pulling them down, etc. I like skirts soooo much better, and feel cooler in them anyway!

      • oops, that was me! guess i cleared my cache recently…

        • I know what you mean about riding up, but the 7′ shorts seem to stay in place for me. I can’t wear skirts because I have thunder thighs that chafe and am very envious of women who don’t have that problem

          • huh, i think it’s so interesting how people are so different about things like this, because i am totally in thunder thighs land and I guess they [TMI warning] rub together, but somehow I don’t mind it under a skirt, whereas, wearing any kind of shorts when it’s hot, or in any weather, i just can’t stand the feeling of having Any. Fabric. Between. My. Legs. At. All. Ack. Get. It. Off. Right. Now.

    • Senior Attorney :

      Oh, my. I am 53 and still rocking shorts. Even shorts that are pretty darned short.

      In my defense, it gets very hot here, and I don’t generally wear the shortest ones out of the house.

      • Goosebumpy :

        I’m with you! It’s skirts, skirts, skirts at the office, so I like to let my runnergirl legs come out and play on my own time. You can pry my cut-offs out of my cold, dead hands.

      • I’m 31 and shorts are my go to. I love my sundresses in fall/spring but during the summer it’s really hot and humid in VA and I hate when my sweaty thighs rub together :)

      • I don’t think it’s an age thing. I just look much better in skirts, and always have.

        • My grandmother rocked shorts well into the 80s. She had great legs. I’m only 31 but I have cellulite. So I don’t do anything short and shorts that come up to the knee don’t look good on my not so long, not so skinny legs. So no shorts for me. Alas… I’d love to rock the hot pink pair.

          • I wear short skirts, but I have thick inner thighs and shorts just are not flattering on them. In a skirt you can’t tell.

      • same, mid-fifties, still rocking the short shorts – for some reason longer shorts, though it seems to me they are more appropriate for “one my age”, look dopey on me and short inseam shorts look fine. Course I wear jeans most days too, I guess I just like a casual vibe. I do wish the longer shorts looked better so I would feel more put together though.

      • Research, Not Law :

        Hey, no defense necessary! I’m envious. I’d be wearing them if they looked at all flattering!

    • For casual beachwear, I usually wear jersey dresses and mini skirts, but I’m rocking long black shorts with a hot pink JCrew vneck long sleeved tissue tee today, and my pink pirate flip flops, of course. Love the dress code here!

    • Merriweather :

      This could be me! Totally agree. Nothing about shorts makes me feel good.

    • But … what about sweaty thighs? Maybe it’s just me, but I find most skirts/dresses unbearable on a 95-degree day.

      • That’s what bike shorts are for.

      • I don’t know, somehow I feel cooler when my thighs are bare under a skirt, than when they are constricted by fabric completely surrounding them. I guess I can’t explain it. ;o)

    • karenpadi :

      Me too. Haven’t worn shorts in almost a decade. I held on to one pair for boating (canoeing/kayaking) but haven’t really been boating since college.

      I love my sundresses. So comfy, so easy, so pretty.

    • long time lurker :

      I am late thirties and wear shorts on the weekend sometimes. However, I have the same issues with shorts as I do with pants – the rise/fit around the waist/hips. I am kind of longwaisted with a bit of a tummy. I would wear shorts and pants more, because I do like my legs, but finding ones that fit me right is such a giant pain.Skirts are just much easier for me to shop for and fit into, so I do tend to wear a lot of them, along with simple tank-type dresses.

      • Anonymous :

        My mom yells at me when I wear shorts because at 46, she says I am pushing 50. The shorter shorts make my legs look better. Meh.

    • I’m a longtime member of team thunderthighs, so the only shorts I’ve worn for the last 10 years or so have been bermudas. If the shorts go to the knee they work; anything actually short is just not flattering. Glad bermudas have been in style the past few years.

    • I don’t wear shorts very often either because I never find any that fit, mainly because I’m tall and so the shorter lengths feel inappropriate/uncomfortable. BUT, I recently bought these and love them so much that I just ordered another color and may buy a third pair:


      All three Gap locations near me were sold out in almost every color and every size, and they were backordered until September on Gap’s website until recently. So, they must be flattering on ladies of all different shapes and sizes. They come in neon colors too, if anyone is interested.

      • Oh, and they are totally vanity sized. So if you are interested, definitely size down at least one size, if not two.

    • I got a fab pair of what used to be called ‘city shorts’ from gap in a trouser material, four yrs ago. I’m hanging onto them as they’re fab ( knee length) even on my thigh heavy figure.

      Never yet found any as good.

      • Hey ladies, please settle a debate I’m having with my boyfriend, who has agreed to turn to you as an impartial, binding authority on the issue. He has a job where he wears khaki shorts outside all summer (and has great, tanned calves to show for it). Often he will put on a new shirt (buttoned down) when we go out, keeping his shorts on. Our disagreement is in regards to his footwear when going out for dinner after work. On one side of the argument is his black or brown dress shoes with black cotton ankle socks. On the other, loafers with no socks or athletic shoes.

        Please advise.

        • I have trouble believing anyone is seriously advocating that he wear shorts with dress shoes and black socks, but that person is…wrong.

        • Seriously? Loafers or boat shoes with no socks. The other is just goofy.

        • SALit-a-gator :

          Ditto everyone above. Dress shoes which shorts? No. Just no. Ever. I would go with boat shoes or some nice man-dals (sandals for men!).

        • Are you living in Bermuda? If yes, then dress shoes and socks.

          Everywhere else, please. Don’t wear dress shoes with shorts! Boat shoes or very casual loafers are the only way to go.

        • Dear Lord. Loafers with no socks or athletic shoes. No dress socks with shorts, ever.

          • That should say no dress SHOES, although by extension, also no dress socks.

        • Thank you to all who replied. My BF has bowed you your wisdom and conceded his position. THANK YOU. Today we went shoe shopping on Zappos to order him a suitable compromise shoe, and we settled on these: http://www.zappos.com/product/7893430/color/327016. Thanks again!

  5. Yay! It’s the weekend.

  6. Vent: I’ve been looking for a cute, short dress to wear as a swimsuit cover up, and I just spotted the perfect one — on the associate in the next office. At work. Aaack.

    • Anon Analyst :

      Haha, this is funny and frightening at the same time! Luckily at my work, women dress on the more conservative side rather than baring too much.

      • It’s basically just the one associate — please do not ask me what she wore to a big client conference, which she apparently thought would be a good place to meet men — who for many reasons will not be with us after the summer, so it’s not worth the conflict of saying anything to her. But, again, aack.

  7. This is b23. I was at a hearing this morning, so I didn’t get your message. You can email me at [email protected] I’d love to hear from you!

    • SF Bay Associate :

      Work that biz dev, girl :). I love the idea that [this website] can turn into a network of biz referrals.

      • Um, sorry, but I expect that email address will be spammed to death now.

        • I’ve posted my anonymous e-mail on here bunches of times. Have never gotten any spam. Meh.

    • Dessert Doctor :

      Taking off Tuesday through Friday, but mostly because I’m traveling out of state to celebrate my 30th birthday (on the 4th) with family. I’m lucky to be in a job that’s flexible with vacation time.

  8. Wed. the 4th :

    So, how are y’all solving the July 4th dilemma? Taking the whole week off? The weekend before, the weekend after? Just Wednesday?

    • Wed. the 4th :

      Assuming you live in the US and are planning on celebrating Independence Day.

    • Taking off Monday and Tuesday, back in office Thursday and Friday.

      • Me, too. Because I’ve only been at my job for 6 weeks, I only have 2 days accrued. 4:00 can’t come fast enough today…

        • This reminds me how badly I need to find a new job. I have been at my position exactly 7 months now which means I have accrued ONE vacation day (we accrue one day per month after you’ve been here for 6 months). Thankfully the office is closed Wednesday.

          • Wait, you don’t get a bank of 6 days once you complete your 6 months? That is awful.

          • Nope. One of the associates who has been here for 5 years and has plenty of accrued vacation took 3 days off between xmas and new years and our boss gave him a hard time. Even though our boss was out of the office half that week as well…

    • You forgot one option: working every day next week. Because that’s what I’m doing.

    • Taking off Wednesday, Thursday and Friday!

    • I’m just taking the 4th, but I’m really excited because my friend just got a boat, so we’ll be watching fireworks from the river!

      • Nice! I’ll be watching them from my new apartment building’s rooftop. We’re having a party and I’m pretty pumped about it. I hope it’s not 70 million degrees but it probably will be.

    • Just Wednesday. Since so many people are off, I’m going to go joy riding in the company cars, ahem, performing “field trips” and “site visits”.

      • Just Wednesday for me as well. But nobody else will be in the office for the rest of the week so I expect that by about 2pm each day we’ll be putting some music on and rocking like we just don’t care. :-)

    • Anon Analyst :

      The 4th is a company holiday and I’m taking Thursday and Friday off. We’re having people over on Wednesday and the rest of the time I plan to do nothing except read some books and watch Downton Abbey season 2. :-)

    • Senior Attorney :

      Just Wednesday, unfortunately. But I am going to TWO parties so I will be making the most of it!

    • On call tuesday through Sunday. Big resort area expecting beautiful weather. Husband also on call for part of it. Back up plan and back up backup plan in place. My only hope is that people split pretty evenly between coming up this weekend and next. Planning to sleep and chill out this weekend.

    • PharmaGirl :

      Only off on the 4th because the 6th is my last day at my job. Pretty excited to have an empty office for my last week.

    • Taking Wednesday off, working remotely Thursday and possibly a bit Friday. We’re also driving to NoVa this weekend to see our soon to be born nephew! So that will be very exciting!!

    • girl in the stix :

      Taking Thursday, Friday and the following Monday off–but even now it seems too short a time off!

    • Our office has graciously closed its doors on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of next week. I got scheduled for an informal hearing via teleconference on Thursday (since our courts did not get the memo that my office would be closing… hah) So, I will be doing that hearing from the beach.

    • Since almost everyone else is off all next week I decided to take off today and Monday and go in Tuesday. Weird, but Tuesday will be a really quiet day

    • I’m taking off Thursday and Friday and going on vacation (SF/Napa). I just realized that’s the longest time I’ve had off in a row since November! I need to plan more vacations.

      • No days off next week (except Wednesday) and I am actually very excited at the prospect of an empty office. I think I’ll catch up on a lot.

    • Not in the US, but our office is closed Monday for Canada Day (I will work from home a little – month end) and Friday for the Stampede parade (yay!) so only a 3 day work week for me (not counting the little bit of work I’ll need to do Monday).

      Of course, it’s Saturday and I’m in the office today, so a 3 day work week next week will be REALLY nice.

    • Just Wednesday since I used up a boatload of vacation days when we had to go take care of Mr. gov anon’s elderly dad last month. Trying to hang on to the remaining ones so I can take time off at Christmas.

  9. CPA to be :

    Thanks to everyone for encouraging words for me the other night about the CPA exam. I’m in the library right now taking a short study break after a very productive morning. I feel much better about the exam, and even if I don’t pass this section this round, I know I have worked very hard, which gives me some comfort. I’ll let you all know how it goes on Tuesday.

  10. DCettes. Anybody up for a meetup? Email me at dccorporette at yahoo dot com and I can put it together.

  11. I just left my old office for the last time (for 6 months) and start my litigation detail on Monday! I am both elated to be done with my home agency for a while and terrified of the detail.

    Also, I am thinking I should wear a suit on the first day at the detail agency, but my only suit is black polyester, and it’s hotter than the surface of the sun here. Boo.

    • SpaceMountain :

      You might need more than one suit to get through a litigation detail. Won’t you be in court all the time?

      • I don’t think I’ll actually be appearing in court very frequently, just filing things. My SO is a government trial lawyer, and he only has one suit. But I am prepared to buy some more if necessary.

    • Did you ever sort things out with your promotion?

      • They decided to compromise and give it to me during the first 3 months of the detail. I still don’t think it’s fair, but it’s not worth continuing the fight. Thanks for asking!

  12. Ugh moderation. Retrying with out certain words. Anybody up for a get together in DC? My schedule just opened up for a bit. Drop me a line at dccorporette at yahoo dot com and I can send out a note.

  13. This slide show has really made my day. It’s basically DC in a nutshell. http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012/06/29/155972981/supreme-court-health-care-ruling-prompts-foot-race-in-press-corps

    • MissJackson :

      Love this, and had not seen it — thanks for sharing!

    • Thank you so much for sharing that. I am dying.

    • This is great. LOVE the woman in the white shift and hot pink shoes. (Are they sport sandals? Can’t tell.) They look much better than the dress with sneakers look, and she really tears it in the last photo.

    • I love it. It also appears that a few women are wearing actual sneakers, but only one of the guys is – way to be prepared, ladies!

    • What’s sad is that people wear the exact same thing to walk 2 blocks to the metro.

      Seriously, DC ladies, you don’t need actual running shoes unless you’re, you know, running. Flipflops, flats, or walking shoes will do.

      (sorry, pet peeve. And this from a woman who starts rocking flipflops with her trenchcoat as soon as it climbs over 50 degrees, so I probably shouldn’t throw stones.)

      • I’m right there with you Bluejay. I’m even ok with streamlined sneakers, just not the huge white sneakers with white tube socks.

      • Eh, I think people should wear whatever they want to feel comfortable on the commute. Plus, you don’t really know how much walking they might have at the other end of the metro ride or if they have an injury or disability or something.

        • I walk two miles each way to the office and have never felt the need to wear gym shoes. Seriously – there are a ton of walking shoes out there that do not look like you’re planning to run a marathon in your business suit. The worst is when they’re worn with white socks and pantyhose.

          • I usually wear comfortable flats, Toms, or Danskos, but I have bad feet, and if I had to walk four miles a day I would absolutely have to wear athletic shoes. And even if I didn’t, who cares? It doesn’t hurt anyone to wear what you want.

          • Second that. Look for German or British shoes if you want comfort with some sensible style. Reike, Clarks, Ecco, even Birk’s footprints.

          • Agreed, DC Jenny.

    • Am I the only one who hears the Chariots of Fire theme in the background while looking at these? Cue the slow motion montage . . .

      • You are not the only one. I made the same comment on Facebook about #4.

  14. Equity's Darling :

    Happy Canada Day!

    I know it’s Monday, but I feel like the long weekend is really the celebration part:) I love fireworks so much. Yay!

  15. SF Bay Associate :

    Whoa – apparently Katie Holmes’ contract is up after five years, because she’s divorcing her resident couch-jumper. See People’s website.

    • WHOA!

    • Ok, this made me laugh. Katie Holmes is testing the free agency market again!

      • Jacqueline :

        Wow! I was never a fan this pair and thought they were both in it for career-enhancing reasons, but I thought they’d stick it out a little longer. Do you think the marriage helped either of their images? I guess she got a bigger profile and some magazine covers, but she’s definitely not A-list!

        • Great article on Slate: It helped neither of their careers, and hurt hers more than his.

    • Yup. Saw that. Cracking me up…

    • I knew it!! I knew it was a five year contract! I also think Suri is Chris Klein’s baby. (And I like to wear tin foil hats).

      • Thirty-Mile Zone :

        I totally agree on all counts. And I used to date a guy that worked at TMZ who gave a lot of “unofficial” support of your latter point.

        • SF Bay Associate :

          Oh no, really? Chris Klein has turned into such a creeper. I watched “The Legend of Chun Li” one day when I was home sick – not only was the movie the worst movie ever, but he was the creepiest and most unnerving presence in that terrible movie. Total s*xual predator vibe. He had that same vibe in the red carpet pictures for American Pie 3. I really hope he isn’t Suri’s father. Yeech.

        • This is the first time I know what TMZ means..

    • Anon Analyst :

      Hm, doesn’t come as a major suprise. I always thought something was a bit manufactured about their pairing.

      • Yeah, but if it was manufactured, it seems like you’d be in it for the long haul. I mean, not like there were any surprises that way, right? I am kind of surprised, I figured if she agreed to marry a crazy dude, she was really committed to the idea.

    • PharmaGirl :

      I’ve been refreshing Suri’s burn book all afternoon. Must know how ‘she’ handles the news!

    • I think the Gawker headline adequately sums it up: Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes Divorcing Because They Couldn’t Fake Being In Love Forever and Plus She’s Not a Dude

      • I know, i Laughed Out Loud when i read that. …. and i share an office ;o)

    • Thank goodness.

      All those Free Katie t-shirts finally worked!

    • I was waiting in line at Marshall’s and checked mail on my phone. I had a breaking news email from People. I admit that I gasped out loud. Strange even to me that I’d care.

      • I was also super surprised, which is weird because it is such.a.weird.pairing.

    • Anonymous :

      I always thought Katie was behaving like this was a short-term gig. She’s spent five years spending Cruise money to build a wardrobe of beautiful, timeless, classic clothes that will serve her for all of her post-Cruise years.

  16. Do any of you have a blog or some such? I’d love to follow you all around the internets!

  17. SpaceMountain :

    I know other military spouses have chimed in previously — if you are mil spouse lawyers, check out this organization I just heard about: the Military Spouse JD Network. They are asking state bar associations to try to make it easier for military spouses to keep their careers despite moving to a new state every few years. I can’t imagine having to re-take the bar every 2-3 years, in addition to raising a family and looking for a new job while your spouse might be deployed overseas.

    • Kontraktor :

      I just read a post on AAM where a lady was asking about how she should resign from her job due to (another) military move. The callousness of some of the commenters was truly sick and appalling. One commenter even went so far as to say that military spouses shouldn’t bother working because they “know” they will move frequently. Um… how about a) it’s illegal to discriminate based on marital status and b) nobody knows anything about the future with 100% certainty, so why should I be expected to be clarivoyant because I am a military spouse? I was blatantly forced to tell one company what my husband did and I got asked how long I was staying, I wanted to say, “Honestly I could get the knock on the door tomorrow letting me know my husband is dead, and then I guess I wouldn’t have that problem of moving frequently with him would I?” None of us know what the future holds, military spouse or not- I mean, we could walk out in the street and get hit by a car this second and not be able to work, so the piont just seems moot to me. I truly resent the fact that we are ‘judged’ in some cases for not knowing the future, especially as military spouses.

      Sorry not much to chime in re bar/exams, but I will say it’s great that there is an organization like this because we need all the help we can get.

      • Kontraktor, I saw that post, too. It is so completely horrible, when I hear these stories it makes me so angry. :o(

  18. Etiquette question: a few moths ago the company I worked for was being awful, and clearly not interested in retaining employees. I started looking around–there are a small number of companies who hire what I do and have various perks and problems. I called up a former coworker who’d left to get his opinion on his new company. We chatted, he was helpful, and I applied and got a job at his company. Now, we all work from home, so I’ve only met him in person once, but his work contributions I respected. He suggested I put him as referring me, and he would get a bonus and we could split it. I did so (because hey, why not?). The bonus just came through and he said he’s sending a check. Sweet! I dot know how much, but it’s more than nothing! Question is–if we were in an office I might make him some cookies or give him a bottle of wine or something, but mailing him something for giving me something seems weird. But should I do it anyway? I mean, he is giving me after tax money, it’s out of his pocket…

    • What a nice guy. I think a thank you note (“Thank you for the referral! I’m excited to join the team”) and a bottle of wine would be perfect, although I agree it’s a bit odd to send a gift. I’d go ahead and mail the thank you note, though. Real mail is always a nice touch.

    • I would probably send something like a small Edible Arrangements or other food item. I wouldn’t write “thanks for splitting your bonus” on the card, but more of a general “I’m enjoying working at your company so far, thanks for all your help getting here” type thing (even if you don’t think he influenced hiring).

    • I’d definitely send a box of chocolate. After all it’s his bonus (because he is truly responsible for you applying) and it’s very generous of him to be sharing it at all, much less evenly.

  19. Need recommendations!

    Looking for a birthday present idea for a teenage girl about to turn 16. I used to babysit her when she was younger – so I think of her as a little sister. I’ve remained close to her and her family since I no longer babysit for them. I am not sure if she will be getting a car/start driving on her own, so any car related ideas are out. Was thinking about some sort of gift card, but that seems like the easy way out right now. She is athletic and plays several sports (volleyball, basketball, softball, runs track), but she’s not what I would call a ‘tom-boy’. She loves hanging out with friends/meeting new people. Looking to spend anywhere from $25-$50.

    Any ideas welcome! Thanks in advance!

    • Does she like makeup? When I was 16 I would have died for a Sephora gift card. I also agree that an Athleta or Lucy card would be great.

      • Anonymous NYer :

        I gave my 15/16 year old cousin a lord and taylor make up set thing for christmas at our annual christmas eve get together. Had like 30 eye shadow colors, a ton of lip colors, and cheek and bronzer colors. She’s always so nice and grateful, but this year she came up to me alone later in the night and gushed about how happy she was with the present and how badly she needed make up (he parents are kinda granola people – awesome, but buying make up for a 16 year old wouldn’t be first on their list)

        So basically what I was trying to say with that long story is ‘I second the make up idea’

    • Second the Sephora idea. I gave my younger cousin (14?) an eye shadow palette from Sephora recently, and she loooooooooooooooooved it.

      • Something similar to this: sephora dot com/smoky-studio-customizable-eye-palette-P310724

    • tell it to her straight :

      how about a copy of ourbodies, our selves?

  20. Random shoutout for Sheraton Hotels… so in my barprep brain(less) state, I booked my hotel room for the bar exam in JUNE. As in not July. I saw the charges on my account and called them, thinking they mistakenly billed me twice. No, its because I no-showed on the June reservation. Doy!

    Not only did they refund my “nonrefundable, nonchangeable” reservation, they rebooked for July at a cheaper rate!

    I know you ladies have an appreciation for good customer service, so I just wanted to share. That and I was freaking about being out the $450, and still in need of a hotel room. Whew!

    • That is fantastic.

    • That is really nice. I’ll keep that in mind next time I’m booking (I feel like I’ve had good Sheraton experiences before too.)

  21. Athleta or Lucy gift card? Both have really good sales and you could stretch a $50 gift card.

    Sweatybands headbands are cute and come a lot of fun prints

  22. Help, I got fat. :

    OK, corporettes. I have a question for you. over the last two years I’ve packed on about 25 lbs. I’ve had a lot of stressors and been really busy… but it was still a lot of weight. I am not a naturally thin person but I kept things around a size 4/6 by watching what I ate and working out. At some point I just lost control and I feel like I’ve fallen and I can’t get up. I have developed some seriously bad habits, especially in the dietary department. It’s also been hard to get psyched about exercise.

    Anyone have tips on how to stay motivated/change habits for the good? I tried medifast but it was too hard and I couldn’t do it while still keeping up the social work obligations I have.

    Anyhow, any tips you might be able to give me for getting back on the wagon, I’d be much obliged. I’m at the end of my rope! So frustrated.

    • PharmaGirl :

      Right there with you. In the past year I somehow started eating Dunkin Donuts sandwiches twice a week and Starbucks croissants 3 days. Neither are even delicious! This plus the potato chips with a sandwich every day for lunch lead to me gaining over 10 pounds in a year.

      I joined weight watchers about 10 days ago and already feel so much better about myself. I’m still quite hungry but have lost a few pounds already mostly due to controlling portion sizes and choosing healthier options. It’s helped me stay accountable to myself. Perhaps that’s what you need? Exercise has never come naturally to me and, quite frankly, I hate it.

      • jbgsunshine :

        Hey pharmagirl, I’m right there with you, coincidentally. Pretty much the same gain over the last yr and signed up to WW for the first time 8 days ago. Good luck!

      • Might I suggest the book French Women Don’t Get Fat? Despite the flippant title, it’s a very enjoyable and meaningful read.

        Biggest messages: eat simply, savor life and enjoy your food.

    • Accountress :

      I don’t diet, so I’m not going to be helpful in that aspect, except to say that the best way to avoid cravings is to remove restrictions, and to take the time, if possible, to make food you will enjoy eating and that will nourish you.

      As far as not being psyched about exercise, I recommend finding something that you enjoy. I think there’s someone on here who takes a hula class, or if you’re a fan of music, maybe a Zumba class? Swimming, what with the summer being in full swing, can be a fun way to move- especially because it’s easy to go from exercise to relaxing and back again.

      Remember to take your time getting back into the swing of things, and that your health is more important than your weight.

    • For the exercise bit, if you truly can’t bring yourself to go to a gym and are stressed for time, I strongly recommend Jillian Michaels workout videos, plus trying to get in more walking/taking the stairs in your everyday life. The videos are only 25 minutes, but they are very intense and will leave you sore the next day. It’s also great because there are beginner and advanced versions of the moves she does – when I was finally able to do the whole series on the beginner level, I went back and did the advanced versions. But also do remember if you’re otherwise usually sedentary during the day, nothing beats just walking (or even standing!) more.

    • Migraine Sufferer :

      Ten Years Thinner, Weight Watchers. Works for me.

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve used a fresh (not frozen) meal delivery service. Most of the meals are good, a few are not, and a few are delicious. I keep only a few supplements in the house — hard-boiled eggs and Greek yogurt because most of the meals I dislike are breakfasts, canned tuna in case I’m really hungry after a workout or something, and fresh fruit and greens. The downside is that it is expensive. The upside is that after about a week of having no choice about what to eat, I’m no longer a slave to cravings. Plus, since the portions are limited, my body has acclimated to that meal size. I, too, have work-related social obligations, but find myself making very different choices at them now. My plan is 1200 calories/day. If I eat two of those meals, I can still be a little more indulgent at the third meal a few days a week without going off the rails.

    • 5 months ago I could have written this same post! (Except more than 25 pounds and it took me a few more years to really wake up and realize what happened and that I needed to do something about it.)

      Everyone is different, of course, but what worked for me was
      1. committing to putting my health (and in this case, weight loss) first, and
      2. myfitnesspal program.

      I’ve never tried WW (I know others swear by it). But I absolutely LOVED myfitnesspal, and it has worked very well for me. It’s not perfect, of course. I think if you have real health problems, it probably won’t work because of how simple it is. Basically, you tell it how much you weight, how much you want to lose, how fast you want to lose it (e.g. 1 pound a week), and it calculates how many calories per day you should be eating. After that, it’s up to you how you distribute those calories.

      At first, I thought it was insane–mine came out to 1200 calories a day and I did not think it was humanly possible. But then, a couple of things happened:
      1. I became highly motivated to exercise (it’s a way to “buy” yourself more calories for the day);
      2. my body got used to eating less;
      3. I became aware of just how much extra food I was eating when I wasn’t really hungry (and not bad food even–lots and lots and lots of fruit–obviously I did not get fat from eating too many pieces of fruit, but it does add up, too).

      I started trying to figure out ways to work exercise into my regular routine. For example, instead of catching up with a friend over lunch, I suggest that we catch up by going for a walk instead. (This is not working as well at the moment because it’s so hot in the summer, but it worked pretty well all spring.)

      I can honestly say that now, 20 pounds lighter (and more to go :)), I am feeling so much better. I am less depressed because in the morning, I don’t try to avoid looking in the mirror. I have more energy. And I feel like I have control over my life again.

      One more thing about myfitnesspal–I think what I like about it is also the fact that it takes the process of weight loss day by day. You have a bad day–you eat too much–that’s ok–you can always do better tomorrow. I found out that I have friends and colleagues who use the program, too, and we are “pals” on it–so they can see if I am exercising, losing weight, etc., and they can post encouraging comments on it (and I do the same for them). It’s an extra level of accountability, if that’s what you need to keep going. (You don’t have to do this, if you want the process to be private.)

      Oh, and I almost forgot–myfitnesspal also tracks some of your nutrients (the “main” ones). So I also discovered that I was not getting enough calcium in my day (especially once I started cutting back on cheese…), so I started eating the chewable vitamins, AND I discovered that I was not getting enough iron. I assumed that I was feeling sluggish because I was too tired and overworked, but now I wonder, if at least in part, it was because of the iron deficiency. I don’t know if I am now more energetic because I have more iron, or because I am exercising, or because I am not lugging around 20 extra pounds of weight, but I know that for some people an iron deficiency can have serious problems and so I was really glad that I “caught” this problem.

      Good luck, whatever program you choose!

      • ChocCityB&R :

        anonie–I swear by MFP, I was able to lose nearly 60 lbs using it, and I still use it every day. I’ve tried countless times to get some MFP users who frequent cOrp*ette to add me to their friend list because I have three friends now and I love the inspiration. If you are interested in adding another friend to your list then please add me @ milele_transfome.

  23. Anyone know where I can see fireworks in the Boston area on Saturday? I’m coming into town for the weekend. I’ll be back in the boonies on the actual Fourth. :(

    • many years ago :

      they used to do it from the bandshell on the charles, with the symphony playing.

      • They still do, but it’s on July 4th, so JAS1 won’t be in town to see them.

    • If you had asked yesterday I would have said Somerville, where we do them the Thursday before the 4th (even if it’s June). But I don’t know where else to see them in the area.

  24. Pumping at work :

    Question for the group about a gift to buy myself. I was thinking about this yesterday while I read the “push present” conversation. Here’s the deal: I am a mother of four and am approaching my twins’ first birthday. I nursed babies 1, 2 and now 3&4 for a year each (assuming I make it another 2 months with the twins). This involves lots of pumping as I work full time as a businesswoman, earning the majority of our household income. I did not receive a push present at any point (my husband is wonderful and does half if not more of the housework and parenting; he was completely against the idea of such a gift saying, “the present is the baby”).

    Anyway, I feel that nursing 4 kids to one year is a huge accomplishment. When the time comes to wean the twins I’d like to mark it somehow. It’s not just about a material object, it’s about the idea of celebrating this milestone. If I were the kind of person who gets tattoos, maybe I’d get a tattoo for this (but please note I am definitely not a tattoo person; more an Hermes scarf person). I would like to mark this milestone by investing in some treat for myself, some luxury I will have and enjoy for a long time and that will remind me of how much I love nursing, how lucky I feel to have been able to do it, and how much effort and committment it required.

    Any ideas about this? I’m imaging spending about $2K-$3K. Some ideas on my mind are: classic quilted Chanel bag (worried I might not use it much); 3 gold bangles (I’ve been wanting them a while), Louis Vuitton something…Note that I am not partial to kid-themed jewelry and am not really looking for something that would have their pictures/initials/genders, etc. Any ideas?

    • I like the idea of the gold bangles but I’d get 4 – one per kid. I know you don’t want anything “kid themed” but I like the subtlety. To others it will just be pretty pretty jewelry. To you, it will be a reminder of your accomplishment, four times over.

      • SF Bay Associate :

        I love this idea, Anon. 4 bangles, one for each kid. That’s awesome. LV is so very overpriced, IMO, and also not that special, though many of LV’s pieces are certainly very beautiful and expensive. I still think about those pleated satin pumps with black lace edging LV did like six years ago. Meanwhile, good quality jewelry lasts forever (I swear I don’t work at DeBeers). Every time you wear them, you can remember your amazing accomplishment.

      • I like this idea (especially the subtle symbolism). I also like the idea of diamond earrings.

      • I think this is a lovely idea.

      • Senior Attorney :

        Anon, you beat me to it! Definitely 4 gold bracelets!!

    • I’ve always wanted to buy myself a beautiful right hand ring. I especially like some of David Yurman’s designs. I also love Mulberry bags, and the LV Alma bags. But like you, I’m a huge fan of scarves, and I think in your situation I might buy four Hermes scarves, each with a theme that reminds me of one child in some way. That would make it more special, and also, Hermes scarves!

    • SAlit-a-gator :

      Wow. Nursing 4 kids while being the major household breadwinner?!? You go girl! That is not an easy feat and you should definitely celebrate. My first thought was not an item but a vacation – kids are exhausting and a trip to Napa with the husband might be just what the doctor ordered. If you do, however, want an item that will remind you of this accomplishment I would go with something you can wear / use a lot. I like the idea of gold bangles, diamond studs, or maybe an nice classic watch (Michelle? Rolex? Cartier?). Handbags are nice, and last a long time, but in my opinion not as long as a watch or jewelry. Congratulations again superwoman!

      • Second this! I am so impressed. Having 4 kids and being a breadwinner? NURSING all 4 kids? Do you write a blog because I’d like to know how you do it.
        Congratulations, you deserve it.

    • A nice watch to commerate countless hours, a necklace to commerate something precious on on your chest. Ok, I will stop with the theme. I don’t have a problem with child commeration presents. In fact, we each got one in our house. I got a diamond watch, he got a BGE grill.

    • I pumped for almost a year as a surgery resident and give you major props for doing it for four kids over three years. I chimed in negatively on the “push” presents, but you are celebrating an achievement, something that took a lot of dedication and sacrifice and commitment to do. Any one who says “breast feeding is free” doesn’t think about YOUR opportunity cost for pumping.

      So get what you want. I personally might get that bag that was featured yesterday, but think about what you would wear, and love to catch a glimpse of in the mirror, or when you look at your hand. I agree with kanye –Treat yoself

    • No ideas on a nice gift to yourself, but, 2 months from now, you totally have to take the pump into a field and have at it with a baseball bat (a la Office Space).

    • iPhones to Suri or not to Suri...or Siri :

      A wise woman once told me that an expensive watch is worth it. no one questions you when you keep looking at your watch repeatedly, day after day after day. Staring at your ring? Not so normal. Staring at your watch? Expected.

    • You could also always get yourself an embroidered Kanye West tweet.


      • Research, Not Law :

        Oh, the water bottle one has me in tears laughing! Oh, boy. EXACTLY what I needed today!

        But for OP: I really like the four bangles or four scarves idea, but iPhone makes a good point about the watch. I have personally been planning on getting a right-hand ring after the next child with one stone for each. I considered a nice bag, but I think I’d end up never using it because I wouldn’t want it to get worn, so it would be pointless. The ring I could wear every day.

        Congrats!!! Pumping is miserable.

    • For one mothers day i decided i wanted a mothers ring, but not a tradidional one. I had three stacking rings made, each with the birthstone of one of my babies. It’s nominally from my husband, but im the one who worked with the jeweler, picked out the stones, etc. and let’s be honest – i paid for it too. I knew i was done having babies and this seemed a nice way to mark the occasion.

    • Working Girl :

      I am pumping while reading this, and I am in awe of your having made it so far with 4 kids. As helpful as husbands want to be–and can be–I don’t think they can ever understand what a sacrifice it is to take your clothes off in the middle of the work day and wash a bunch of flanges and bottles multiple times a day for a year. So please reward yourself with something fabulous that makes you feel really, really, really, really great. You deserve it.

  25. Can any of you amazingly wise, creative women help me think of a gift idea. It’s for a friend’s husband’s bday. She is the one who needs the help. I can’t think of anything to suggest because everything I suggest is apparently wrong. Him and I have zilch in common and, frankly, we are not each other’s biggest fans. He loves cars, cars, and gadgets. He also gets himself all the gadgets he comes across so it’s hard to know what he’d want that he doesn’t already have. He is also into martial arts and action heros, and cars … did I mention cars? Experience ideas are welcome but he cant do flight lessons because he hates heights and he can’t do sailing lessons because she doesn’t want him busy for a whole weekend. Tickets to a show/that sort of thing are out because that’s an anniversary present, not a birthday one, apparently. My friend would like to spend about $150-300, but would probably spent more for the right idea. TIA!!!!

    • SF Bay Associate :

      Around here, there are very special car rental agencies that will rent you a ultra-luxurious sports car, like a Lotus or a Ferrari or a Bugatti, for a day. Renting one of these is on my husband’s bucket list. Is that available around you?

    • Ha, I have a friend’s fiance who sounds very, very similar. He still lives at home at 32 *cough cough* and so has quite the disposable income and just buys himself whatever he wants. He likes to think he’s really smart (it’s really fun when he tries to lecture me about an area I’m a subject matter expert in based on the Wired article he read), I’m guessing this guy does too – so some sort of impressive book/set of books/first edition? Early edition of a comic book he likes?

    • Maybe a “Nascar experience” thing where he gets to drive a car on the track?

      • Senior Attorney :

        Or a stunt driving class?

        • That’s what he wants. There’s a school for this, apparently. But its $2700 to do it and she doesn’t want to be so extravagant. For the record, I would kill my hubs if he spent $2700 on a stunt driving class.

    • long time lurker :

      This person sounds like my brother, who is into those things and who I usually give cash, which is I guess not an option for your friend. Does he have a favorite restaurant/food? Books or subscriptions to magazines re cars and gadgets plus a dinner out?

      • My friend nixed the restaurant idea because that’s not “special” enough for him. Subscriptions are no go because he gets those through work and expenses them.
        Renting a fancy car would be possible but too expensive ($1-2K, apparently).
        There’s no nascar where they are and my friend doesn’t know enough about his collecting hobbies to get him something re: one of his superheros.
        In short, he’s impossible, she’s impossible, and everytime I talk to her about this, it makes me want to stab him in the eye and makes me want to ask her why she is with this doosh!?
        But pls., pls., pls., keep the ideas coming.

        • This is ridiculous. It’s bad enough she’s investing all this energy into this princess, but now you’re doing it and you’re enlisting others to do so too. I think you should stop indulging her in this.

    • iPhones to Suri or not to Suri...or Siri :

      Expensive bottle of liquor? I mean, is he into scotch? You can spend that much money on a bottle of scotch.

      • She got him super fancy vodka last year. Do you guys see what I am dealing with? ;-)

    • Holy crap. Maybe she should just get him a clue. If he didn’t sound like such a prima dona (dinner isn’t special enough?!) I’d say that she could find him some Matchbox sized cars of the super fancy cars and a display case.

      Frankly, I don’t think she should get him anything, because clearly nothing will make him happy. But that isn’t very helpful. Or any of my business. And you are a good friend to try to help. And I give you permission to tell her that you’re out of ideas, and that it’s not your fault he has Special Snowflake Syndrome.

      Hey – there’s an idea. Set up a charity in his name and call it the S-Cubed Foundation and then never tell him what the SSS stands for.

      • sorry – that was overly snarky and slightly mean. I do wish her (and you) the best of luck with the gift shopping.

      • Hahahaha, I would love it, but I fear my friend would never understand.
        I may tell her I am officially out of ideas. All this for a guy didn’t do very much on either of her last two birthdays. For realsies…

        • Then she should get him the guy version of whatever he got her, so they have a set. No way he can argue against that!

      • Merriweather :

        Special Snowflake Syndrome. I. am. dying.

      • {Like Button}

    • Whatever happened to a good old-fashioned BJ? It doesn’t sound like he’d be interested in anything else, frankly.

    • Are you on the East Coast?
      Lake Placid has skeleton and bobsled “experiences”. It’s the complete opposite of stunt car driving, but really fun.

    • Beer brewing class
      Day at the go-kart track or ATV trails
      Leather driving gloves
      Tires (no really)
      Something from his favorite car brand (example: BMW website has some nice jackets/sweaters, bags, etc.)

    • D Train South :

      How about the Nest thermostat? Too boring? It’s a great gadget.

  26. Very Anon mom :

    Finally starting to get back in shape. It’s going to be an uphill climb, especially as I’ve never done it. I’m already convinced that maintaining is easier than getting in shape. Anyway, I’m trying to wear clothes that I can be active in; maybe a while workout, maybe just a little pickup something in the park (I work part time from home). I recently tried on some fitted workout pants and couldn’t figure out the right size. All 3 sizes I tried had–excuse the slang–cameltoe. Even the ones that were uncomfortably loose elsewhere fit very snugly around the folds at that front part of my anatomy. Is this the way it always is? Would it be better with higher price gear than Target’s, or do I have to loose the belly first? If you have had success (or failure) in fitted workout clothes, pleaseet me know what youve learned. Thanks!

    • I love Skirtsports. I buy their skirts and tops and dresses (I know, right? but it works) on Sierra Trading Post for fairly cheap. Running skirts are the best for modesty + cuteness.

      • Very Anon mom :

        I will look into these. For the record, I did try the running skirts at Target and might go back for one 10 or 15 lbs from now. My thighs are not ready for the world in that way yet, although I used to have great legs.
        Thank you both for the suggestions (and the implicit agreement that that is not how anything is supposed to fit)

    • Have you tried the Champion running skirts at Target? Everything else fits too tight on me, except for those.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      What about a capri-skirt or a skort? Athleta has a ton of options, and some of the skirts on the skorts or capri-skirts have zippers up the sides, so you can open the skirt enough to get the stride space you need. Athleta stuff is guaranteed forever and ever amen, and really well made. I started buying Under Armour and Athleta on clearance and haven’t looked back since. If you don’t feel good about what you’re wearing at the gym, you won’t enjoy your work out and you will stop going. Or, that’s how I am at least. There’s no better way to spend money than on your health, which includes the things you need to feel comfortable atthe gym.

    • I like Danskin. Unfortunately I have to order them online. They used to have outlets, but now I think there are only a couple of them. I cannot wear the lower cut tight topped pants at Target.

      • I found some Danskin shorts and capris at Kohls recently. Been having the same problem as you re: cameltoe, and the Danskins seem the best so far for avoiding this.

    • Cameltoe is bad pants cut. Nothing to do with whether they fit you, or how loosely. Try other brands!

  27. Hi all…can anyone suggest some good solid color t-shirts. My tummy area is not flat (understatement), and I find that things in the style of the Gap Perfect T are too clingy to that area. I bought a number of tees a few years ago that I loved, but they are way past acceptable for outside of the house. I am not picky about neckline. If this has already been covered, please point me in the right direction.

    • Check out Gap’s tees in the Mason and Mercer fits. I’m wearing striped Mason today and like it a lot. It skims the body and is a bit loose without being sloppy. The Mercer is a basic v-neck tee that hides my pooch quite well.

    • For casual t’s, I like the Old Navy soft vintage tees. They are heathered and pretty thin, but not see through. They are cut pretty well and not clingy on the tummy. They were mentioned on wardrobeoxygen dot com also. (see the June 22 and May 29 posts)

      • LinLondon :

        Seconded! Wearing one right now. I’ve got about 7 of them and they are the bessssssssst.

    • Seattleite :

      Lands End has tees in 3 different fits, tall sizes, etc.

    • I have become a huge devotee of the empire waist for exactly this reason, and snatch up whatever I find that has a real one. Unfortunately, I can’t think of anyplace I got a good T shirt recently. Kat’s post a week or two ago was on T-shirts; did you check it out?

    • Research, Not Law :

      I’ve been loving loft’s banded and bubble hem tops to hide my post-partum pooch.

  28. Competency Advice :

    Building on another’s threadjack from this morning regarding feeling incompetent –

    I’m preparing to start as a new associate at a medium-size firm (20-30 attorneys) in September. In Virginia, for what it’s worth. I’ll be doing primarily civil litigation working with two partners, but have been encouraged to take on my own teeny-tiny cases as soon as possible – that is, if I get a client in the door, they can be my client, and not a partner’s, if I want that. From my understanding, the firm is very, very busy right now, and I’d like to be able to hit the ground running/rock them with my competence.

    In the meantime, my clerkship (not in Virginia) is very, very slow right now – the judge is out on vacation three weeks this summer and several additional days, and I clerk in a locale that most attorneys take vacation away from in the summer, so in general I have about 5-10 hours out of my 45 hour week where I am at work, but could dedicate myself to learning what I need to know. (My judge supports, this btw – I keep asking what I can do to help when every case and project is completed and he is the one who suggested that I take the time to learn what I need to know for firm job).

    So, for those of you who have struggled and/or overcome the first years of not knowing what in the world you are doing in practice, what advice would you have for someone who actually has about 2 months and 80 hours to learn what she can? What did you really need to learn cold the first year or so of practicing?

    Thanks so much – I’m so excited to hear your suggestions!

    • SAlit-a-gator :

      I would start by getting a copy of the local rules of the state and federal courts you’ll be practising in and reading those. These should be readily accessible online. After I’ve read the local rules, I would refresh myself generally on VA’s Rules of Civil Procedure (I’m assuming you went to law school in VA?). I honestly had a partner insist that all new associates that a copy of the Rules of Civil Procedure home with them so they could read one rule per night before going to bed. Sounds silly, but reading the rules will give you huge step up on more experienced attorneys who’ve been practising for a loooong looong time and think they know everything – the rules are amended all the time, so you need to re-read them even if you’ve been practicing forever. Good luck!

    • Bryan Garner has some really solid book on legal writing. I like The Winning Brief and still pull it out when writing. Also maybe read a few books on practicing law like Swimming Lessons for Baby Sharks, Curmudgeon’s Guide to Practicing Law, etc.

    • Also try the go-to secondary source on VA civ pro. Presumably, pre-trial civ pro is most important at this stage.

      I’ve only done biglaw so there are “other depts” that will help with this but you may want to figure out a calendaring system for yourself and, more importantly, how to count days for deadlines.

      • My go-to secondary sources for Virginia state procedure are Sinclair on Civil Procedure or Friend on Evidence. Bryson on Civil Procedure is also good for some stuff but smaller. And if your firm has Michie’s Jurisprudence, that is a great resource when you arrive.

    • Former MidLevel :

      I second both of the suggestions above – review the rules (especially the Local Rules) and check out some Bryan Garner.

      • Former MidLevel :

        P.S. Pinecone, I didn’t mean to slight you – your comment wasn’t up when I started writing mind. :) And, at any rate, you are totally right about counting days–it’s better now since the 2010 revisions, but you still have to account for the mailbox rule, etc.

    • I was just wondering about this the other day!! As someone in your shoes (starting as a new associate in the fall), I have nothing to add but will be watching this carefully. Any environmental lawyers out there that have advice specific to that field? The partner I will be working for sent me basic practice guides to the five or six major statutory and regulatory areas (Superfund, Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, etc.).

      He did also give me a copy of the Curmudgeon’s Guide to the Practice of Law, which I found amusing and probably highly relevant. Its a quick and easy read, and goes over the basics of work product and social expectations of big law (I assume applicable in most law).

      • Wow, can you tell I’m commenting while trying to “watch” the barbri lecture? “He did also give”… thats a grammar doozie! Can you all mentally insert “He also gave me…” and pretend that never happened? :)

      • Just curious, what practice guides did he recommend?

        Do you know any of your clients or the litigation you’ll be working on? I have news alerts set up for most of my clients so I know what is going on in their business and in any pending litigation.

        • They are the ABA’s Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources Basic Practice Series. Apparently there is a whole set of them, he only sent me Superfund, Clean Air Act, Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, Toxic Substances Control Act, and the Clean Water Act. They are dated 2001, so not super recent, but they’re mostly for background. You know, for some “light summer reading” while studying for the bar ;)

          I don’t know any clients specifically yet, but that is a great idea! Thank you!

      • There have been a lot of Clean Air Act regulatory changes in the last couple of years, so you may want to familiarize yourself with those as well.

    • I practice primarily in state court in Virginia, I would recommend you get familiar with the Rules of the Supreme Court of Virginia. There is lots of information on there about the lowers courts such as deadlines/methods for service, what must be contained in pleadings, etc. Also Title 8.01 of the Virginia Code is the Virginia civil procedure code. Not all local state courts in Virginia have local rules. I’ll post a link to my favorite searchable website for the Code in a separate post…

      • Supreme Court Rules: http://www.courts.state.va.us/courts/scv/rulesofcourt.pdf

        Virginia Code: http://lis.virginia.gov/000/src.htm

        Virginia Regs (aka the Virginia Administrative code or Regs): http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?000+men+SRR

      • My links are in moderation but I forgot! Virginia has official rules of evidence starting July 1, 2012. You should be able to google those and they would be helpful as well (previously evidence was case law-based, not rule-based).

      • Ugh, and sorry for all the typos! Can you tell I’m dying to get out of here today?

    • Seattleite :

      I’m not an attorney, but many attorneys here have recommended “Swimming Lessons for Baby Sharks” by Grover Cleveland.

      • anonnyugrad :

        THIS!! I read it, and at the beginning it felt awfully basic, but there are some gems and it is SUPER short.

    • Goosebumpy :

      What they all said. And after you’ve read the local/state/federal rules, sit down and make yourself a ONE-page chart with any and all litigation deadlines you can think of, from the beginning of a lawsuit through the appeal (time for service after filing, time for answering, time to respond to basic motions, time to respond to motions for summary judgment, time to reply to responses for motions for summary judgment, etc.). Do it with the state and federal rules for sure, and get the local rules for the jurisdictions where you’ll be practicing in there if you can. Make sure you cite to the specific rule for each deadline in the chart, so that way you can double-check if you ever doubt yourself (and then you can double-check later on if you think the rules have been changed).

      I had to do this as an assignment when I was a summer associate, and I was KICKING myself for not bringing a copy of it with me when I started at another firm a year later. Word to the wise: you won’t find deadlines for all of the categories in every set of rules, and you will look very, very smart when you explain to a confused partner that, say, the rule for when to respond to a non-summary judgment motion is in the local rules and not the federal rules.

    • I’m not a lawyer, but I bet the partners at your new firm would take it as a positive sign of interest/enthusiasm if you asked them for suggestions (without mentioning that you’ll be reading them while you’re on the clock at your current position)

    • Thanks everyone for these suggestions. Rules will be read, deadlines will be memorized, calendaring will be set. :)

  29. Nail Salon Newbie :

    Ladies, I need instruction — I want to get a pedicure, but I don’t know what the protocols are. Do I have to wear flips so my nails don’t smudge? When and how much do you tip — is there a line on the charge receipt like in a restaurant, or do I have to have cash ready for that? How long does it take? What else do I need to know?

    Thanks for your help.

    • Wear flipflops (they will have some available, but at most places you have to pay for them). Tip cash; usually I tip around $5 for a $27 pedicure. It can take up to an hour depending on the condition of your feet and how long you let the polish dry.

      Couple tips: once you sit down to let your polish dry, they don’t come back and tell you to leave. My mom got her first pedicure recently and apparently she sat for hours because she thought they’d tell her when to go; they don’t, use your own judgment. I usually wait 20 min, spray on some of the drying spray, remove the two separators and bounce. Also, don’t wear a skirt; you’ll flash the pedicurist.

      Have fun!

      • Oh, also, make sure the place is clean. They should be cleaning the basins with bleach between customers and using sterilized tools. If you have any doubts about cleanliness, walk out. I’d check out Yelp reviews to see if there are comments about the place’s cleanliness before you go.

      • Nail Salon Newbie :

        Thanks, Bluejay. Particularly good tip about the skirt — that’s something I definitely would not have thought of!

        • you can also bring a sweater or something to cover your lap when you sit down – my drop-in place keeps hand towels around for this purpose.

      • All very good advice. Some places will allow you to tip on a credit card, but I have found that most of the people prefer to be tipped in cash.

        Also, it’s easiest if you wear something that stops at your knees, so you don’t have to worry about rolling up your pant legs. If your skirt is too short, or uncomfortable, you can ask for a towel to drape across your legs, so no one is getting an eye-full!

      • terrible infection :

        two important safety issues:

        1. do not go anywhere that uses spa tubs with jets. that is where the bacteria live, and if you get an infection you will need to go to a dermatologist to get rid of it. this happened to me last summer at a place i had regularly patronized for over a decade. now, when i go there, i ask them to place a plastic basin full of water into the spa/tub instead of using the spa tub and the jets.

        2. do not let them “shave” your feet or callouses.

        • Yep, I haven’t gotten a pedicure in years for fear of infections. I know I wouldn’t have the guts to leave a place if I didn’t think it was clean.

          • terrible infection :

            the problem is that you can’t tell by sight whether it is clean enough.

          • SF Bay Associate :

            Yep. I only get the “waterless” pedicures now. A new trend in CA.

          • Yea that’s why I haven’t bothered. Plus, I can take care of my feet myself. Manicures are another story, but I still can’t bring myself to pay $15-$20 for one when I don’t have a job. What is the waterless pedicure? Sounds interesting.

        • It’s actually illegal in nearly every state for spa techs/nail places to use a razor on someone’s feet. If someone offers to razor your feet, it’s a dead sign that they are not concerned with following the law and maintaining a healthy environment.

    • 1. Most people wear flip flops or other open toed sandals so that there’s less risk of smudging, even after allowing some dry time in the salon.

      2. Assuming you’re going to a quickie drop-in type place, they will scrawl the price of the service on a little notepad – that is the price on which you base your tip. If you’re paying in cash, tell them how much change you want back. If you’re paying in credit, tell them if you want to put the tip on the card as well (I usually do card for service, tip in cash).

      3. For a basic pedicure, about half an hour (toes won’t be totally dry at that point, but enough that you can go about your business).

      Other advice – tell them if you don’t want them to use the little razor to shave off calluses (I always decline) and don’t be afraid to micromanage a little – the pedicurists often try to trim my nails too short/square, which looks awful with my toe shape, so I ask them to just file them down a little and keep them slightly rounded instead.

    • Yes, wear flip flops. I usually tip 20%, right when I’m paying at the end. The place I go has a line on the credit card receipt, but cash is nicer. Mine take around 30 minutes. I also recommend bringing your own polish. That way if you chip one you can touch up and cover it with clear top coat. Have fun!

    • Jacqueline :

      Many salons will have disposable flip flops you can scuffle home in, but if you have your own, you might as well wear them to make things easier. A pedicure probably takes about 30-35 minutes. And I think tipping 15-20% is standard. Enjoy!

    • karenpadi :

      Wear flip-flops. Wear shorts or a dress or pants that can be rolled up to your knees. I tip 20% in cash (some nail salons are cash only and the ones who do credit cards aren’t very good at managing charge receipts). It takes about 45 minutes to an hour. I like to bring a book to read bc I’m old and don’t like to read celebrity magazines. Pick out your toenail polish when you arrive.

      • Also I always bring my own nail polish or buy a bottle at the salon. That way if I need to touch up a chip or something I have the matching color.

    • I would make sure to have sufficient cash available for a tip (I go with 15-20%). I have been to several nail salons that do not allow you to include your tip when paying by credit card.

      Agree with the other recommendations given – especially the “use your own judgment” for the drying time. I have sat awkwardly waiting for “permission” to leave that never came.

    • DC Association :

      I suggest NOT letting them “shave” your feet as someone mentioned. Once you start doing this it is a vicious cycle…skin grows back all hard and you have to shave it off every time. At least that is my experience. When they pull out the razor, just say, “No razor!” and they’ll use just a pumice stone.

      • Agreed. I’m dealing with this now. I’m wondering if the same vicious cycle happens with a PedEgg? I might go that route since the daily pumice stone has done nothing to repair my feet.

  30. My comment’s been in moderation forever, so here it goes again:

    Anyone out there in the Northern California (non-Bay Area)? Like Sac or the surrounding regions?

  31. Has anyone hired someone to retouch their wedding photos and create an album? I have been married for 2 years and have never made an album 1) because I do not have the patience to put it together so that it looks nice and 2) none of the photos are retouched so I think I look awful in all of them.

    I tried to find someone on odesk but it would have been difficult to transfer my photos on their system and I didn’t find anyone I liked.

    • Did you hire a professional photographer? Did he/she make you sign a contract? Those photographs are copyrighted by the photographer that took them, so it may be difficult to find someone reputable to retouch them without a waiver from the original photographer.

      When you say “retouch,” do you mean edited at all – like, your photographer gave them to you straight off of camera?

      This is all assuming that you hired a photographer for your wedding photos. If you took the pictures or had guests take pictures, etc, you might be able to hire a professional photographer to do his/her best at editing the pictures for a one-off fee.

      • Many photographers now a days specifically state that they do not own the copyright to the photos of your weddings. You have to check the agreement. I made extra-sure I owned all copyrights.

    • Yes – I own all copyrights to my photos. My photographer didn’t do any retouching to them so I’d like to have some work done to clean them up.

    • I have a friend who might be able to do this for you – actually I have two possibilities. One works for a yearbook company and did this very thing for one of our friends after her wedding. The other is a friend who is a photographer – he has done beautiful work on photographs for me. I haven’t asked either of them so let me know if I should.

      • Yes, please! Thank you so much for offering! My email is anonette123 (at) gmail (dot) com!

        • I sent them both your information. I’m leaving it up to them to contact you if they’re interested. I spoke to one of them (the photographer) and he said that it would depend on how many pictures and what needs to be done.

  32. Inspired by coastaldreamer’s post yesterday. I also like to plan in case I can get a transfer there. What neighborhoods would you suggest? I love the arts & crafts homes there. Would be looking to rent at first. Any neighborhoods in that style or downtown that would be safe, only mildly expensive, & close to transportation?

    Also, any things or organizations that shouldn’t be missed as a new resident? Services that would make relocating easier?

    • Divaliscious11 :

      Where to live in Chicago totally depends on who you are…..

      Chicago is very diverse, but also very segregated in my opinion. There are some neighborhoods that are more integrated, but there is ethnic/racial integration and then there is economic integration, which is also more difficult to overcome. The neighborhoods that are sufficiently diverse from an ethnic/racial composition, tend to be much more expensive and/or subsets of larger neighborhoods.

      Need more details about what you like, what your into, prior urban exposure etc…. and what you can afford for housing…

      • I’ve always lived at what could be called “the old city limits” in any city. One of the first waves of suburbanization with older neighborhoods, their own small downtown, and only 10-15 minutes from the real downtown. Minimal change through flight further out or regentrification as families retained their homes, the next generation returned there after college, their friends moved to the area also & so on.

        We can afford anything under 2k, the price would just mean the difference between renting or owning initially, don’t mind smaller spaces (well laid out800- 1000 sq ft is better than 2000 that is poorly planned), like older areas, need to be able to keep the pets, have a yard or be close to a dog run/park/green area.

  33. Running Setback :

    I officially have vertigo. This is making some physical activity difficult. On the bright side, knowing what it is minimizes the freak out that my blood pressure is dropping or something else is wrong so the episode isn’t as bad overall. Has anyone had this and found activities that don’t trigger it or have little effect on it?

    • Mrs. Will McEvoy :

      It also excuses any outbursts you might make to uninformed college students.

      • …well, as long as you make sure mention your vertigo medicine made you do it.

    • karenpadi :

      My grandmother has vertigo and I guess I’m likely to get it too later on. The thing that helped her was taking a large B12 supplement (like 5000% of the daily recommended value). B12 deficiencies run on that side of the family so it might have been the deficiency causing the vertigo. But it might be just a placebo.

    • Vertigo isn’t a diagnosis, it’s a symptom. Kind of like nausea you know: are you pregnant or did you eat the wrong hamburger? So if I were you I’d go see someone else and try to figure out where it’s coming from before deciding all is well.

      • Running Setback :

        The doctor said vertigo based on fluid in the middle ear. There may be some in the inner ear also bit they can’t see that far in. Nothing icky that looked like an infection and he said if it did start in the inner ear, it was probably a virus and may take a while to resolve itself. Antibiotics in the meantime just in case. Go back in 10 days if not better.

        It seemed easier to leave it at vertigo originally because it covered more of the vision, funny feeling stuff than saying I have this ear thing that may not be an infection but appears to be causing all of these issues that sound nothing like an ear infection most are used to.

        • I get something like this when I travel (usually long haul flights). It has something to do with the crystals in your ears coming unlodged. Is this what you have? I can’t remember the name. In my case, antibiotics wouldn’t work, but I was given something to help with the weird nausea. It resolved on its own, but took a long time. There are also some head exercises that I did that seemed to help.

        • Ah, then mercifully it should be temporary! That makes it a lot more bearable, even though it’s a pain while it lasts.. Mostly I’d say try to keep active within reason, at least take some walks if you aren’t endangering yourself. But be careful of sudden movements. Take it easy on yourself, be sure to get plenty of rest and so on. A cousin of mine had a really bad case of it, fell off a chair while having dinner and could hardly stand lying down even, but it resolved completely within a couple weeks, so you have reason to be hopeful.

  34. Just had to share this. Katniss Barbie – it is a thing: http://www.barbiecollector.com/shop/doll/hunger-games-katniss-doll-w3320

  35. It is so hot in my town today that one of our highways just buckled because of the heat. And it’s just day one.

  36. Advice please: I want am planning on proposing to my girlfriend and am looking to buy an engagement ring, but I am SO lost.

    After reading the threads on the subject here, its clear to me that this is something that people actually have some pretty strong feelings on so I really don’t want to mess it up with my obliviousness.

    I know how I would describe the ring that I want to get her but have no idea what this actually means in terms of rings in real life. Description: a one (or two) step down size ring from the big law type rings but something still on the more generous side of the curve for a large NE city. She prefers dainty traditional jewelry and would like only diamond – no other stones. Not necessary to buy the ring from a “named” jeweler like Tiffany’s etc. Possibly estate rings?

    If someone could point me to some rings that would generally fit these criteria so I have a sense of what I should be looking for, I would really appreciate it. I’ve been looking through different websites for the past couple weeks and all of the rings are starting to look the same to me.

    • Minority? :

      i may be in the minority, but i wanted to select my ring myself. if she is like that, can you give her a placeholder (a ring you can return later, or a note or something explaining that you will take her shopping)?

      • You are not alone. Mr. 30 proposed to me without a ring and let me pick my own. Frankly, I preferred it that way. The only downside was that I had no visible sign of it at school the next day. So, Jo, if you decide to go this route, maybe proposal Friday evening and ring shopping Saturday?

    • Can you go ring browsing with her? Not shopping, but wandering through jewelry stores and having her point out what she likes and doesn’t like. We did that when ring shopping, and I think it really helped zone in on what I like and don’t like, which honestly I didn’t know until we really started looking.

      • My SO did this for me. We went to about 5 jewelry stores on 2the different days a few weeks apart and I tried on rings. I definitely changed my mind about what I liked after I saw some on my hand. But then he actually picked the ring later and I had no idea when he was going to propose. I ended up being completely surprised when he did and I love my ring.

      • SF Bay Associate :

        Yep, I ended up with something totally different than what I was sure I wanted because after trying on that for-sure style, it turned out not to be as flattering on my finger. I love the ring I ended up choosing.

        And congrats, Jo#2!

    • Research, Not Law :

      My husband wanted to surprise me while also assuring that he got something I liked, so here’s what we did: I picked out three settings at an estate jeweler, they flagged them, he came in later to pick one setting and a stone completely of his choosing. Worked great. I felt surprised. He felt confident.

      LOL, since he *really* wanted to surprise me, he kept arranging “proposable moments” to throw me off. It worked. I had given up trying to expect it, and he majorly surprised me.

      I also prefer dainty jewelry and wanted estate. If you want to do it solo, I highly recommend starting to go in and look at them in person rather than in person. They feel so different in person. Also, it’s good that you have an idea of what size you want; don’t let them talk you out of it. My husband had already had the experience of me sending him back to get smaller pearl earrings, so he knew I truly did want a smaller stone. The jeweler said he’d be back to get a bigger one once I saw it, but he made the right choice. No regrets here.

    • Hey, I’m curious – is this the regular poster Jo March or a new Jo March? I thought the other one was married or has mentioned a Mr. Bhaer?

    • Dear Jo March 2,

      I am sad you took the same screen name as me. I thought really long and hard about mine! And I totally wanted to be Anne Shirley or even perhaps Alanna of Trebond, but they were already in use. So I didn’t use them.

      Hopefully yours,

      • Okay, good. Thought I was losing my mind.

        • SF Bay Associate :

          Right?? I was pretty sure that the o.g. Jo March had referred to Professor Bhaer with a male pronoun. And then I chided myself for being narrow minded and forgetting the middle area on the Kinsey scale. It makes more sense that there is our o.g. Jo, plus a presumably accidental squatter Jo.

      • Equity's Darling :

        And you are Canadian also, oui? I feel like you commented on my excitement re: Ann Taylor moving north, and there don’t seem to be many Canadians, so I note them.

        • Yep. Happy Canada Day long weekend!

        • Ann Taylor is coming north? Equity’s Darling – to our city? (she said hopefully)

          • Equity's Darling :

            Hah, no, but a girl can dream- to Toronto apparently. I have family there though, so I go back a few times a year (which will facilitate shopping, obviously) and I’m super hopeful that it means they’ll simply start shipping to Canada.

      • There was an alterna-AEK a couple times too but it stopped. Of course my handle is not as thoughtful as yours, but still, stay hopeful!

        • I did that at first. Didn’t notice anyone posting with the moniker “jen” so I used it; someone piped up and said that they use it here. I appreciated that she was simple and straightforward about it, and I changed immediately.

    • Leslie Knope :

      I recently bought a ring from Brilliant Earth. They are based in Canada and make a big deal of ethical stone sourcing. They offer an option to buy a diamond and set in it a plain-jane ring, so your girlfriend can pick the perfect setting for the permanent engagement ring but still have the “omg my new ring!” showing to all the friends/family.

      I’m sure other jewelers offer this too, but I don’t really know what it’s called.

      • I have a necklace from Brilliant Earth, and I am very pleased with it.

        My engagement ring is an estate ring. My DH proposed without a ring and we went shopping together (I wasn’t sure if I wanted one, if I wanted diamonds, etc.). We ended up getting a three-stone oval diamond ring from a local jeweler. Not showy, I think the stones add up to a little less than a carat. It is yellow gold with a platinum setting, but we got it rhodium-plated because I prefer the look of platinum/white gold to yellow gold.

    • First off, congrats!!!

      I recently got engaged and went with my fiance to pick out the setting, as we had a diamond from his grandmother. We ended up using Leon Mege, a jeweler in the diamond district in NYC (not sure if you’re here) for the setting. He did an amazing job!! It sounds like your girlfriend would like his style, as he specializes in dainty, beautiful micropave. He can also do a more antique/estate look if that’s what you’re interested in. His rings are hand-forged and I think the pricing is very reasonable given the quality, you get WAY more for your money vs. the large high-end retailers. He can also source a diamond for you. If you want to check him out, his website is artofplatinum(dot)dcom. We are going back to him for our wedding bands!

  37. I need to whine, but I feel guilty for what I’m whining about: I’m an analyst for a large academic medical center, and have been there about two and a half years. Our fiscal year starts July 1, so raises and bonuses come out now. Anyway, I’ve been working well above my title and pay grade for as long as I’ve been there, and was told I would be receiving a significant bonus, raise, and promotion this year. Instead, the budget wasn’t approved and I got a 3% bonus and a 2% raise.

    I know that there are people out there who need work, and people who have not received raises in years, so if you’re in either category, please forgive my moaning. I totally recognize that this is a high-class problem. But… I deserve more than I got. The fact that 2% is considered the highest “merit” raise is laughable – it’s not even a cost of living adjustment! And getting more bonus than raise is offensive, because my base stays lower. (I know what they’re up to – I’m a fricken’ analyst!)

    So I’m taking a few days off this week, and I’m going to polish up my resume. Any other advice?

    • I mean to put this gently, because I know what that disappointment feels like and I’m sorry you have to experience it. But in case it gives you some perspective, I’ve been practicing law for more than a decade (SmallLaw in NYC, MediumLaw in a western mountain town) and I’ve never gotten a raise bigger than 2%.

      • Ditto. Most of my raises have been around 3%.

        Glad you got some raise, though! 2% raise strongly preferable to 0% raise.

      • Seriously, this pretty common in the academic world and generally there are no bonuses.

      • Anon for this :

        I’ve never gotten one less than 8% except for one year when bases were frozen company wide. It just depends on your field. In my field, you come in earning X and on a normal trajectory, you’re expected to be earning 2X within 7-8 years, at which point you plateau.

        In any event, I don’t think what’s normal or what you get should really be compared to NYNY’s issue given that she was TOLD she’d be receiving one thing (even if the details weren’t all provided) and then received another.

        If this were me, I’d make it clear to my supervisor that I am disappointed. “I wanted to let you know that I am very disappointed with my raise and my bonus since I was led to believe they would both be much higher given my significant contributions to our group. Is there a way we can address my base [or a special mid-year bonus] prior to the next annual pay cycle?’

    • I think you’re right to polish your resume. Either you can do better, or you’ll find out there’s nothing better and that you should be happy with what you have. In either case, you won’t know until you put yourself out there and start looking.

      I’d be p!ssed in your position too. They lied to you and they didn’t go to bat for you to make sure you got your promotion. you’ve essentially been doing volunteer work by working above your pay grade. It doesn’t matter what other people make; what matters is that you feel slighted and you think you can do better. So, go for it. Just don’t quit until you have a firm offer in hand.

      • Part of my disappointment is that this was brought up months ago, and repeated often, but there was no warning to lower my expectations. The day we were given raises was the day I learned that it didn’t happen. Meanwhile, I’m leading projects where everyone else involved has a title senior to mine, and I’ve just been assigned two more.

        I figure that I should look to see what’s out there. I’m starting to see that no one in this institution gets a significant bump without another offer in hand. I like my work, I like the people I work directly with and for, and I don’t like playing games. So looking elsewhere isn’t really what I want to do, but I feel like I have to.

        Thanks for the suggestion to talk to my supervisor. I wanted to do that this week, but she had a personal issue that took her away from work, and I started doubting if it was the right thing to do. I will set up some time to address it when she’s back in the office.

        I’m also thinking about going to grad school to add a marketable credential. Maybe I’ll ask for a title change and a flexible schedule to do an executive master’s program if there’s no money in the budget for a better increase now. And an office instead of a cubicle – there’s an empty one I could move into…

        Thanks, everyone. I read always, but only post occasionally. Still, I knew this was the best forum for my gripe.

    • Jenna Rink :

      Mind if I piggyback on your whine? My husband was supposed to be getting a significant promotion, funding was approved in full, and at the last minute they decided to split it between him and another person. The portion that went to him is nice, but won’t improve our finances much. If this had been planned as a smaller promotion from the beginning it would be great news, but given that this was planned for him specifically for a number of months it really, really sucks.

    • That sucks, and you have every reason to be upset. I would be too. I was told in Feb that a significant raise was coming, it had been approved & everything, and would be retroactive to Jan 1. It didn’t come & didn’t come. Whenever I’d ask about it (I asked my boss & our HR manager), I was told they’d look into it. Finally got an answer earlier this month. They decided to delay the big raise so I could still get this year’s merit raise. If the big raise had gone through in Feb I wouldn’t have qualified for the merit. This is fine, but if that was going to happen, they never should have told me about it in Feb!! And I’m not sure if it will be retroactive or not.

      It’s pretty frustrating, but I feel like a whiner whining about my raise that hasn’t happened yet. Especially since it will all go to savings anyway (although dh has inconsistant work, so the savings is important). And there are many people out there in a much worse position than I am. But the fact is, it was promised, I was expecting it, and it sucks that it hasn’t happened. Just like with you.

      Definitely polish your resume & start looking, but I’d also talk to your supervisor. See what they say.

      • For what it’s worth, something similar happened to me. I was told unofficially that my salary was way out of whack with what others in similar positions were making (in our peer institutions) so I would be getting an 8% raise when everyone else would be getting 1.9%, with a few people getting more for equity reasons. When I got my actual salary, it was a 6% raise and my boss didn’t seem to remember the original conversation. Of course, I’m thrilled with the raise, but my initial reaction was disappointment because it wasn’t what we originally discussed. I’m over it and excited to have what I got.

        I also gave one of my staff a large raise associated with a position upgrade and then was told by HR that she wouldn’t be eligible for any raise in the new fiscal year because her raise went into effect 3 months before the end of the fiscal year. I was disappointed because I could have bumped her up just a little more to where she should have been in the quartiles. It’s frustrating on both ends!

    • Sorry for your disappointment. And I do sympathize, but I’d love to be in your shoes. At least you got a raise. Our contract just ended, the new one hasn’t been negotiated yet, but I’ll be surprised if I keep what I’ve got now. Rumor is that we’re all in for significant pay cuts. (Like rollbacks to 5 to 10 years ago pay scale.)

  38. Anyone know where I can buy some really good quality henna in Manhattan?

    • Ru will know. PAGING RU! RU YOU ARE BEING PAGED!

    • Go to the Indian grocery stores on Murray Hill. I forget the name but there is a large one with groceries and beauty products. They will have the hair henna as well as the one for your hands, mention that you are looking for the one for hair if you aren’t sure from the package (though it’s usually clearly labelled in English).

      • Kaluystans on Lex and 28th is the big one… I haven’t shopped there in a while, but I recall a henna section. Good luck!

    • I am utterly appalled that I have no idea. Are you sure you don’t feel like visiting Jackson Heights, gorging on copious amounts of cheap Indian and Indian/Asian fusion cuisine? No? Or Atlantic Ave in Brooklyn?????

      125th St vendors in Harlem – the shady incense stands. The desi store owners in the Fashion District and/or the desi restaurants on the Lower East Side.

      What are you gonna do with the henna? If it’s not super urgent, I can personally hook you up with some cones. Yo qwerty, do you know where the mehndi supply in Manhattan is?

      • I need it for my aunt who is leaving town soon. She dyes her hair with it and keeps raving about some Iranian henna she got years ago and how it was the most divine thing ever … I thought this would be a nice surprise. I love, love, love Jackson Heights but not sure if there is time to get there with everything else I have to do this weekend. I’m going to check out either Murray Hill or go up to 125th (good ideas, thanks), and if it doesn’t work out maybe I can steal away from work on my lunch break and go to Atlantic Ave on Monday (I work downtown). Is there any specific place I should check out?
        Thanks, you guys – I feel like there is nary a question that will not find an answer on here!

  39. karenpadi :

    Dear Summer Clerk,

    Yes, the entire office was repainted 2 weeks ago. I know the office still smells faintly of paint. But why are you “working” from home today because the paint smell bothers you? It didn’t bother you these last two weeks and no one else has been bothered by it in over a week.

    You can’t do any work from home because we didn’t give you any work you could reasonably do from home. If you wanted to take a day off, take the d*mn day off. You will be able to pull the “work from home” trick for getting out of work in a few years…but you ain’t there yet.

    -karenpadi (who wanted to get the project you’re “working” on off her desk by the end of the month).

    • unsolicited advice :

      Did you clearly tell her the deadline? Seems a little unfair not to make it clear and expect her to know. Next time maybe you could say something like “sure, as long as you can still get x to me by y date”

      • Regardless of whether karenpadi gave her the deadline or not, this paint thing sounds like a BS excuse. If it’s a summer position, then it’s pretty safe to assume that the clerk needs to call in for permission rather than making the decision that they are “working from home today”

        • karenpadi :

          This. Summers, first years, and second years simply don’t have “I’m working from home” freedom unless they are contagious.

          Clients like to schedule meeting over, you guessed it, normal business hours. So, laws of physics and all, I can’t mentor a summer while I am at meetings with clients. I can’t necessarily know when I’ll be free for 90 minutes to go over the summer’s work during normal business hours. I can’t eat lunch, sign filings for the paralegal, and mentor during the one 20 minute break I do get.

          Summers out there: clients’ schedules trump you. My workout schedule trumps you. Last minute projects trump you. So the best time for me to mentor is after clients and support staff go home for the night. That’s why it’s annoying as h$ll when you want to leave at 5pm everyday.

      • karenpadi :

        Her deadline was Wednesday. I had a major client meeting so I graciously extended it to yesterday where I was in meetings all morning. She sent an email at 1pm saying “The paint smell is bothering me. I’m going to work from home until 4pm and from 10am to 2pm tomorrow.”

        I offered to meet outside the office, but she wasn’t issued a laptop and she doesn’t believe in printing out working copies, so we couldn’t do that. Mighty convenient.

        Summer clerks: face time is important.

        • it's painfully obvious :

          it’s paintfully (i first typed that by accident, but it’s so good that i’m leaving it!) obvious that she hasn’t finished the memo yet and is pulling some version of an all-nighter at home to get it to you before monday morning.

        • Magdeline :

          Wait, has she turned it in already, but you haven’t had a chance to review it with her yet? Or just not turned it in at all?

          • karenpadi :

            She’s turned something in…shudder…I read the first 3 sentences and we need a face-to-face.

    • Magdeline :

      Umm what?! Who would do this?? How ridiculous to say that you are working from home if you have no work to do from home and have work to do at the office, particularly as a summer clerk. I just graduated from law school, and I cannot imagine ever doing this!! If she has been getting bad headaches/whatevever, which likely would not be caused by the paint at this point, she should call in sick/take the day off.

      I feel like some people just have no sense of what is and isn’t acceptable in a professional environment. (Thank god I’ve been reading Corporette since college.) I have many former classmates and co-workers like this. They are generally the same people who wear leggings to work and call it business casual.

  40. DC or NOVA ladies – Do you have any suggestions for hair salons? My hair is wavy, but nothing out of the ordinary. TIA!

    • And I forgot… Tailor recs also much appreciated!

    • I love Brennan at Bang in Logan Circle for my wavy hair. They are very reasonably priced too, at $40 for a wash, cut, and blow dry.

    • Roberto at Bang at Verizon Center. Adore him.

  41. Migraine Sufferer :

    Banana Republic is 40% off of sales items today with code BRSTARS

    • Migraine Sufferer :

      I ordered this dress and am looking for suggestions for a belt/blazer and accessories to wear with it. Its a beautiful dress, but makes me look kind of boxy and I’m hoping maybe a belt/blazer will help. Thanks!


      • hellskitchen :

        nice color! I have a sweater dress in a similar color. I like to pair bold or contrasting colors so for this I would go with a mustard jacket/burgundy belt OR ivory jacket/coral belt. Or you could go with safe neutrals and do a navy jacket with a dark brown belt

      • I think a skinny belt in a bright color – maybe coral or green – would look really nice with that dress.

      • Migraine Sufferer :

        Thanks all! Looking for a bright skinny belt now! (Already have a navy blazer).

  42. Random question for the CrossFit or Paleo ladies on here. SO and I are both trying to eat healthy and lose weight. I am focusing on making healthier meals for us. He is doing Crossfit and has been suggesting Paleo recipes for us to try (for example from everyday paleo). Problem is that when I plug these into SparkPeople the nutrition these recipes from everyday paleo seem to be pretty high in calories, definitely higher than my usual dinner budget. Is that usually how it goes? I’ve looked into Paleo for me, but I don’t think it’s the right fit.

    • karenpadi :

      Yes, Paleo requires massive amounts of calories from fat and protein. I had to switch to fatty cuts of meat and frying everything in oil.

      I went Paleo for a few months but it was a nightmare for me. Turns out, some people (ahem) have a protein sensitivity where eating massive amounts of meat triggers migraines. This was way worse than a normal insulin withdrawal or my insulin addiction is more like a meth addiction than a caffeine addiction. So to head off the migraine, I’d instinctively carbo-load at my next meal.

      My compromise to this was to eat Paleo for breakfast and dinner with my now-ex-bf and have a normal lunch. I gained 40 lbs in 6 months doing this. The Paleo meals weren’t huge but they were deceptively calorie-rich and he liked to really indulge on cheat days. I’d have to “cheat” with him too. Plus, according to Paleo, if you are going to eat dairy, eat the full fat dairy. Wowza!

      Either go Paleo all the way or don’t go Paleo at all. It took 6 months after breaking up with that guy to stabilize my weight and a year to start losing weight again.

      Honestly, the best shape I was ever in during Crossfit was when I was eating cheese pizza every night for dinner. I was a size 2, going down to a zero. I was a size 8 four months after starting to try to Paleo and ended up at a size 12 when I finally dumped that guy and Paleo altogether.

    • Migraine Sufferer :

      I’ve done paleo and it works for me for weight loss, but I also limit my dairy. I feel so much better and more energetic when I stick with the paleo diet. I eat mainly lean meat (actually a lot of chicken breast and a lot of hard boiled eggs) and not so many of the fattier cuts.

      “Clean Eating” (magazine) has good recipes that are either paleo or paleo-ish.

    • hey I’ll just chime in with my experience:

      I posted awhile back re how my husband was going paleo and it was kind of freaking me out. Anyway, i ended up deciding to do a month long paleo challenge with him (whole 30) to see what it was like. I lasted about 3 weeks. During that time, I didn’t notice any weight loss and I think I actually gained a pound or two. However, my skin looked fantastic. I think it was either cutting dairy or cutting sugar, or both. Also, it helped me kick my fake sugar habit, which was pretty nice. Anyway, my husband finished the full month, but he didn’t lose any weight at all either, and was pretty disappointed. Since then, I’ve gone back to eating my normal, all-inclusive diet (but with a little less dairy) and he’s gone back to eating low-carb, atkins-style (not all the way atkins, but very low carb). I’ve lost the pound or two I gained on Paleo and he’s lost several pounds eating low carb.

      So, my takeaway is that paleo can be cool for certain things- like if gluten gives you headaches or stomach problems, or if you want to cut processed food. But it’s not necessarily a weight loss diet at all. That said, they do have some cool recipes once in awhile. We made paleo muffins with tapioca flour that were good, and I’ve tried “pizza” made with cauliflower crust that was also good. So it’s not a bad place to get ideas, but i don’t think the full diet works for me. Oh, and the reason I only lasted 3 weeks was because I got really tired of eating so much meat and eggs. I prefer a more varied diet with lots of vegetables, occasional ice-cream, wine a few times a week, meat a few times a week, beans, and pastries on the weekend! I can maintain my weight that way, so it works for me.

      Good luck!

    • dancinglonghorn :

      I lost 60 lbs easily doing paleo. For me, the trick is 100% no cheats. Read “Why We Get Fat and What You Can Do About It” By Gary Taubes (sp?) for an explanation. I think it all really depends on how your body is wired. Also, you need to be careful of what you are replacing things with in your diet – Taubes talks about this in both of his books. Ie, if you cut out refined flour but replace it with sweet potatoes, you will not see results. I don’t eat any paleo treats – no sweeteners, no flour substitutes, nothing. For me, its a great way to eat. I’m Italian/Scottish and I just cannot tolerate carbs or sugars. But for other people, it may have little effect. My husband is really one of those guys who can drink 4 beers a day and not gain weight.

  43. Anon bride :

    Any suggestions for a simple, short, one shoulder dress for a beach wedding would be much appreciated. Found one I really liked at Bloomingdale’s on sale but it had a wide elastic band that was a total deal breaker. TIA!

    • South by Southeast :

      Can you link to the Bloomie’s one so TCFKAG (and the rest of the vicarious shoppers) can get a feel for what you liked?

    • If you’re looking for something that still has that “big bride poof” feel, this Alfred Sung is actually lovely, I think.


      • This Marchesa is also beautiful and another one is waiting in you know what for reasons I don’t understand.


        • http://www.bergdorfgoodman.com/p/Notte-by-Marchesa-One-Shoulder-Embellished-Cocktail-Dress-Cocktail/prod74750033_cat285304_cat219500_/?index=108&isEditorial=false&cmCat=cat000000cat000002cat000009cat80001cat219500cat285304&ecid=BGALRJ84DHJLQkR4

        • Okay, search the Notte by Machesa, you won’t regret it.

          Now, I’ve seen this one on a few different sites, and its okay, but its poly which I don’t love at even this price.


      • And this BHLDN one is nice.


    • For something sleeker, I love this one at Bergdorfs.


    • Not sure satin is right for the beach, but this one is so pretty! http://www.dessy.com/dresses/lelarose/lr140/#.T-5l5pGkxn8

    • And this one is a little beachier: http://www.dessy.com/dresses/lelarose/lr118/?color=ivory&colorid=114#.T-5mG5Gkxn8

    • Seriously, google the Notte by Marchesa Embellished one-shoulder silk dress until it comes out of you know what. Its just lovely and I think with the right accessories could look utterly beachy but still classy.

      • Anon bride :

        Thanks TCFKAG n all! That Notte dress is gorgeous! Didnt find the one I found at Bloomies online to link to but it was Grecian style with a little sequence/beading at the shoulder and an unfortunate wide elastic band at the waist. It is a good deal ($155), but is definitely missing the elegance of the Notte dress.

        • I want to get remarried so I can wear the Notte dress…so there’s that. :-)

          • You know, this is going to sound ridiculous because I have no plans to get married again, but if I did, I’d know exactly what I wanted now. When I got married I didn’t have a clue.

          • BTW. NOLA, I still love my original wedding dress. I just ALSO love the Notte. So I’d have a completely different wedding where the Notte would be appropriate.

            Or maybe I could find it in cobalt blue or something and wear it to parties….you know, in the world where I was wealthy.

          • Oh I loved mine at the time! It was beautiful – white silk with pearl beading. It looked very vintage and romantic. I guess I feel like I’m a different person now (16 years later!) and my style is so different and I’m much better informed. When I went dress shopping, I didn’t have a clue what I wanted – I just started trying dresses on and ended up with something very different from what I expected.

        • I think I saw that one a few times — is it that one at cusp I linked to? Its okay but I see what you mean about the elastic band.

          But…I also know what you mean about budgets! I also check out some bridesmaid lines, they will often offer their dresses in white. Might be able to find something you like there too.

  44. hellskitchen :

    does anyone have experience applying for a tourist visa to france? I am based in NYC but the only visa appt I could find that would work with my trip dates is with the french consulate in DC. Their service area is MD, DC, Delaware, VA. So I have no shot at getting my visa there, right? They let me book an appointment though.

    • I can’t recall if you’ve previously indicated your nationality, but are you sure that you need a visa? There are a whole host of countries whose nationals are exempt from the visa-requirement to enter the Schengen area for up to 90 days (which includes France and most of western Europe, etc.), including:

      Albania*, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Barbados, Bosnia*, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Holy See, Honduras, Israel, Macedonia*, Malaysia, Mauritius, Monaco, Montenegro*, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, San Marino, Serbia*, Seychelles, Taiwan (passport bearing identity card number), Uruguay (*bearers of biometric passports only)

      As well as: Australia, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Singapore, South Korea, United States, Venezuela, bearers of passports of the Hong Kong special administrative region (People’s Republic of China) and the Macau special administrative region (People’s Republic of China).


    • You’re not googling properly :-). There is a consulate in NY, always has been. http://www.consulfrance-newyork.org/-You-are-going-to-France-

      • Ah, sorry, I know: you’re confusing embassy (generally only in the country’s capital) with consulate – bureaucracy in many locations. You never need an embassy for a visa.

    • I travel a lot, although I am not of a nationality that requires a visa for France, so I can’t provide advice specifically for France. Just to make sure I understand: you’re of a nationality that requires a visa for France, you have to be interviewed before you can get the visa, and the NY consulate did not have any visa interview appointments available prior to your trip so you scheduled one in the consular services section of the DC embassy instead, right? (It seems a bit strange to me to need an interview for a tourist visa, but I’ll assume you know what you need to do.)

      It shouldn’t matter where you have the interview. The service area just indicates which states the consulate staff serve; it doesn’t matter that you don’t live in one of those states. If they ask, just explain you couldn’t get an appointment in NYC. As for your chance of getting a visa, be meticulous in making sure you bring everything you need for the application, including proof that you intend to return from France (proof of employment, your lease, etc) and proof that you have enough money to pay all your expenses on your trip (bank statement, pay stub). If you have everything you need to apply, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t get the visa. The most common reason for delay is incomplete application or lack of proof of intention to return.

      Enjoy your trip!

    • hellskitchen :

      Thanks you all. So I definitely do need a visa – I traveled to France 10 years ago and got a visa then. But yeah, I booked an appt in DC because there wasn’t one available in NYC for weeks. I didn’t think the service areas would matter but they seem to have inconsistent info on the consulate pages for DC and NYC. The former one asks for proof of residence in DC, MD, Delaware etc. Bluejay, I am hoping they’ll accept my rationale that I couldn’t get an appt in NYC. Fingers crossed – I have waited too long for this vacation!

      • It doesn’t follow at all – the necessity for a visa follows the whims of politics and changes frequently. I’m French/US and I know of at least a dozen changes within the last couple decades. There were no visas needed either way, but after Chirac’s public disapproval of the invasion of Irak the US started requiring one, then France required one right back. But I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if that had changed in the last couple years, now that diplomatic relations have relaxed. The past is absolutely no indication of what may be happening currently. You need to look at the consulate’s site and read some current information..

        I’d be exceedingly surprised if a French bureaucrat went with you assigning yourself to another geographic area, that is doomed to failure. The correct procedure would be to talk to someone in NY and give them your presumed departure date and beg to be snuck in further up the line. That’s assuming you do need a visa, and also assuming that people with business imperatives and family emergencies don’t take up the entire beginning of the line.

  45. Hi C0rp0r3tt3 moms — I’m almost 9 weeks pregnant with kid 2 and the last time I did this was 3 years ago. I went through my maternity clothes last night and was pleasantly surprised (I know! That sounds weird to say), but I’d still like to get a few “filler” items. Baby is due in February and our first kid has a December birthday, so I’m lucky in that I don’t have to worry about buying different seasons of clothes.

    Specifically, though, I want to stock up on leggings and long tops for the weekend. Where was your favorite place to buy this kind of maternity wear (note: leggings cannot be see-through!), and what other weekend basics might you recommend? Thanks ladies!

    • Diana Barry :

      I got leggings from Asos, but they were a bit see through on the rear. Maybe try shopbop or boden, but those are likely to be $50 or $80 instead of the $20 I paid. :) Boden also has maternity tunics that are nice.

  46. anon for venting purposes :

    Ladies, what do you do to fight off a fierce attack of the lonelies? I know I’m not alone in feeling alone, and I keep trying to remind myself that people aren’t out of town this weekend to spite me (because the world does not revolve around me) or that they just aren’t free for whatever reason because they don’t like me, but I realized I’m going to be alone with all plans all weekend after thinking all week I’d have people to hang with. The lonelies are the strongest pull for me to slip into Depression Ditch so I need to fight this off ASAP. I do have some actual work to do to keep my brain occupied, but it’s all post-law school job search related, and that’s terrifying and depressing all by itself. Is there anything you all do to fight the feeling you’re being left behind? (I’m the youngest, single-est friend in my crew and it really blows sometimes)

    • anon for venting purposes :

      that’s no plans, not all plans. lol, that would solve the problem.

      • That’s the worst. When that hits I try to at least get outside with a book or something, where it’s a bit harder to feel sorry for myself (which I’m prone to when I’m in that state). Or do something you’ve don’t think any of your friends would be that into, like that weird art show or whatever. Hugs.

    • Dont feel bad. When I first came to the city, I was feeling ALOT like you, so I started to chanel my thinking to positive things. The FIRST thing I looked up were the places that had things to see where other peeple went.

      Shopping is the best, but the next BEST place is the MUSEUMs–specifacly the NATURAL HISTORY and the MET, where you can see mummies. There also are alot of guy’s there. You DO have to put up with their fake line’s and them stareing at you instead of the stuff they are suposed to.

      Things will get better, so for now cheer up and shop or go to the MUSEUM’s!

    • Just a question – instead of assuming “people” would be around, did you actually try to make specific plans with anyone? Holiday weekends usually take a bit more work, because of a tendency to want to travel. And in any case if you want to see someone there’s nothing quite like inviting them, in due time, to do something.

      • anon for venting purposes :

        Yeah, i did, specifically telling people I’m going to be unavailable myself for a while so i wanted to do something now. (I have family coming in for the 4th). Because of my summer work situation I live in two locations back and forth; I’m down at home base where i know more people, but no dice this time. I know it just doesn’t work out sometimes but i really struggle with loneliness when it does.

        • I don’t know if this is helpful, but I just want to say that at some point in your life, you’ll be thrilled for some downtime alone. My friends and I all work a lot and don’t see each other as much as we’d like because we have to fit in all of our personal stuff (laundry, cooking, cleaning, groceries, errands) on the weekends or we’re just tired when we’re not working.

    • Pro Tip: Making yourself a gin and tonic and sitting on your couch muttering repeatedly to yourself “I’m going to be alone forever” while ignoring the small furry animal who wants to snuggle does not, in fact, help at all. Not that I speak from experience, or anything.

    • Turtle Wexler :

      I struggle with this same thing too, and in fact am remembering this weekend exactly one year ago when I let the lonelies absolutely get the better of me and was very down-in-the-dumps for days. Do you live in a nice neighborhood where you can take a long walk? Or maybe get some form of exercise – yoga classes, go for a run, a bike ride, or something? Lounging around reading/watching t.v. never makes me feel better when I start to feel blue like this – it just lets me fixate. I’d say get yourself out of the house and into some fresh air!

      • anon for venting purposes :

        It’s roughly 105 degrees here today, so I’m going to stay in and beat the heat–I am going to work out indoors in a minute though. And possibly hit up some sales this afternoon. Thanks, y’all. The reminder I’m not alone even when I think I am is tremendous. :)

        • Maybe an air-conditioned afternoon matinee? It can feel slightly awkward the first time going to a movie alone, but IMHO it’s well worth getting through that initial awkwardness. We’re not meant to be talking to other people during the movie anyway!

          • Jacqueline :

            Good idea! Go see Magic Mike or something else fun and distracting.

            Someone else posted about this recently (probably about a month ago, maybe?), so try Googling this site and “lonely” or “alone” to find the thread. There were tons of great tips about things to do on your own to take your mind off of things.

          • anon for venting purposes :

            gahhh haha we were trying to arrange a Magic Mike oogling trip. Oh well.

        • Jacqueline :

          Here’s the thread I mentioned above — search for “loneliness” and you’ll find it in the comments.


          • Jacqueline :

            Here’s the thread I mentioned above — search for “loneliness” and you’ll find it in the comments.

    • Are you in DC (based on your comment about the weather)? Would be happy to grab a drink with you sometime.

      • DC to NYC :

        Ditto this. If you are in DC shoot me an email at anonymousinthedistrict at gmail dot com. Would live to get together

      • anon for venting purposes :

        I’m from DC but don’t live there now (flyover state, lol). Thank you, though, that’s super sweet! (Did you lose power? My mom texted that they were sweating to death last night)

    • Joan Holloway :

      Are there any free events you can go to in your city? Depending on the activity, the other participants can be a lot of fun. I discovered a Chinese sky lantern event in my local park tonight. Even though I went with my husband, it was the kind of crowd that I could have enjoyed by myself because of all the laughter and everyone helping each other with their lanterns. There were several other options that I found online that also could have been fun by myself. I really needed to get out today because I was feeling stir crazy, but with the weather, I looked for something either indoors during the day (i.e., museum, exhibit or theater event) or outdoors at night.

  47. Career advice/hopeful words? I’m an assistant in a finance firm and I’d like to make a move away from an admin role. I’m worried that it’s not possible and that scares me — I’m wondering if anyone on here has or knows someone who has?

    I’ve come to finance late – I fell into private equity by accident after leaving a tenure-track job as a humanities prof and I’ve been working for a small, entrepreneurial firm for 1 1/2 years (I’m now mid/late 30s). THe more I do and learn — including financial accounting classes at night — the more I enjoy this field. I don’t know anyone who’s made a career transition in their late 30s that goes from humanities to finance, or from assistant to associate (front or back office), and I’m struggling with feeling trapped as a permanent admin.

    There seems to be a real chasm between admin and professional — am I trapped? Am I just too old for finance or a new professional career? Feeling quite alone and would welcome any replies — thank you!

    • It’s possible, but not necessarily common. The only way I know of is education.. Check out your local university extension for part-time certification programs.
      One thing I’d caution is that even though it looks like you should stay put, in fact you should be prepared to move once you get a certification in order to change roles. Once you’re cast as an admid, you often aren’t seen as quite fully equal, and it’s easiest to get over that hurdle by simply going elsewhere. That’s a gross generalization, and I hope for your sake that you’re in one of those supportive places that encourage and help their staff to fully develop, but don’t bet on it.

    • My aunt started as a secretary at a corporation. They noticed she was bright and hardworking, sent her to finish her bachelor’s. She eventually got her CPA, then an MBA from a top business school. She’s now a CFO at a publicly traded company, and has previously been controller at a couple of big companies.

      No advice, just inspiration. It can be done!

      • Thanks M C and Bluejay! Education is probably the surest way — and there’s definitely no way to move within firm — but after getting the PhD my students loans are huge and I’m not psyched about more classes, as much as I like my accounting class. But it’s nice to know it’s not totally *impossible*.

        • No totally impossible at all, I should have mentioned I’m a rescue-secretary myself :-). Decades later admittedly, but I know it’s still possible, it’s just less common because there are many fewer admins now..

  48. New poster :

    Tonight does not suck because…Olympic (trials) gymnastics is on! Nothing makes me happier! I just got home from work at 10 pm on a Friday night after a rough week, and I get to sit on my couch with a glass of wine and watch my favorite thing. I did a lot of gymnastics for years and years, and though I was never that good, it just makes my heart swell. Floor was my jam and a great tumbling pass just makes my eyes well up. It’s dorky, but it makes me feel young again to watch. I am loving Gabby and Jordyn, hope they make it!

    • I heart gymnastics too! Makes me feel like a kid on Christmas morning. :)

    • And swimming!!!!!!

      • Anonymous :

        Oooh! I can literally smell the chlorine when I watch swimming and feel my arms burn!

      • Former swimmer here too! So excited to pass along my love of swimming and cheering our team on to my kids. Also pretty sure we need to install intermittent flames on our pool deck. Of course we’re also watching the gymnastics too.

      • Another swimmer here, too! It seems like Dan Hicks stands too close to Rowdy Gains. DH is definitely a close talker and I feel like Rowdy is about ready to deck him.

      • The swimming trials are in my hometown, so it makes me proud to know that y’all are watching. :)

    • The power is back on and seems to be staying on :D. No tv or Internet. :( And, no trees landed on my rental property. Phew.

  49. Dear Rite Aid,

    I know that you are the only good pharmacy in town, and I know that my mother and I have the same last name. But that does not excuse your calling her, at her house, where I do not live, on her phone number, which I never gave you, to announce that my prescription is ready. Twice, in two weeks. Especially because the second time happened one week after I had a conversation with your head pharmacist about the first time, and he promised it would never happen again.

    I have spent my entire life trying to enforce boundaries and carve out some privacy from her. She hates that and spends a lot of effort trying to scare up information about me from third parties, which your phone calls make too convenient for her.

    STOP IT.

    Also, I am not encouraged that you cannot ensure that it will not happen again and so have set up a false name for me to use at your pharmacy to make sure there are no more mixups. That’s the best you can do?

    • Contact the district manager, and or post on their Facebook page if they actively monitor comments to have someone contact you. That’s totally unacceptable.

      • SF Bay Associate :

        Definitely. How is this not a HIPAA violation??? Email corporate customer service, and post on their facebook page. I had a problem with a specific location of another chain, and after not getting traction with that store’s management, I emailed national customer service and Facebook posted generically, and Facebook messaged more specifically. I heard back from the district manager for that store within 48 hours and the problem was immediately resolved. Time to bust out the c-tte hammer and show these fools what’s up.

        • I sent an email to RiteAid’s corporate privacy officer. If I don’t hear from them by COB Monday, the next step will be a whistleblower complaint via their ethics sharepoint system. I don’t want to get anyone in trouble, I just want it to stop. And, really, that should be possible.

  50. There’s a good chance I’m going to be offered an internal promotion early next week. This comes at a time where I almost turned in my notice last week with no job lined up because of my toxic boss situation and upper managements assurances that they would fix, yet year and a half later no real action. They also promised to work on a well deserved promotion for me and yet again not updates in more than a month and a ton of other’s were promoted.

    I’m considered a key person in my current department, I pull the work load my boss doesn’t and pretty much does her job. I anticipate backlash and potentially a counter offer to keep me in my position. I don’t want to stay, short of a major restructure and firing of my boss and immediate promotion, nothing is going to fix the problem.

    Yet, I can’t exactly say that when / if I’m approached and asked about why I want the new job and if offered a counter why I won’t accept. Obviously, everyone will know the real reason but I feel the need to save face. Can someone help me come up with a sound bite? And how do I divert questions about “are you leaving because of X” even if everyone knows it, I don’t want to come out and say it at this point…

    Positives about new job:
    – Promotion and siggnificant raise
    – Defined growth path
    – New division / ability to learn different skills (been in current role 5 years)
    – Current skills, experience and internal relationships strongly transfer

    • Anonymous :

      “This new position fits better with my five year plan.”

    • hellskitchen :

      “I want to challenge myself by working in a new context”

    • Belle et Rebelle :

      I like the first two suggestions. You could also emphasize that the new position will give you a chance to learn new skills and maybe tie that in with the five year plan answer.

      It sounds like the new position has enough positives that it would be very appealing even if you weren’t looking to leave your current department. If not for the horrible boss, I wonder if anyone would question your motives for moving to the new position at all. Seems to me that even if everyone knows you want to get away from horrible current boss, all that’s really needed is a fairly standard “looking forward to new challenges” type answer.

  51. NYC - Fear of Bedbugs?! :

    Seeking advice from NYC gals –

    I’m going to NYC for a weekend in July (and can’t wait!!). My friend and I are going to stay in an apartment in the West Village we found on Airbnb. My question concerns an icky topic. Bedbugs. I’ve heard that bedbugs are common in NYC. Should I be concerned about the place we are staying having bedbugs? If so, is there anything I can do to prevent bringing them back to my home? Any advice would be appreciated. If I’m being paranoid and crazy, please let me know.

    • You’re not paranoid. I live in NYC and they do happen. There’s a bedbug registry (google it) and you can check if the building you’re staying in is on it. Once you’re there, check for them. I was more terrified before my bf had them and I realized that you can see them–check the the headboard, under/between mattress an pillow. If you see them or detritus -walk out! In the time he had them, though, *i* never got them from him or while staying with him or he me. I would keep bags/luggage away from bed/ couch though. Also, remember that they aren’t a virus (they dont spread like ebola or something) an the bites are annoying but don’t carry disease. Enjoy w village!

    • You’re not paranoid, but your paranoia is misplaced. The problem isn’t NY, it’s been 10 years since it was the focus of the revival, it’s hotels everywhere. And registries are usually very limited, because the situation can have completely changed while you get there. I’ve had bedbugs twice in my life and have only actually seen one, I certainly wouldn’t rely on inspection alone. This is much like interrogating potential sexual partners won’t work to protect you against AIDS, you should be using condoms every time. It’s much wiser to assume you might run into bedbugs, and prevent bringing them home with you.

      I like to put my suitcase in the shower, or at least off the ground and away from the walls on a luggage rack (or unupholstered chair). Don’t put your clothes or handbag on the floor. That alone will do more to protect you than anything else. If you have any doubts, like mysterious bites, be sure to isolate your bag on your return home, and thoroughly wash everything and dry in a hot dryer. Then you don’t need to worry so much.

  52. momentsofabsurdity :

    I went shopping and got SO MUCH good stuff. Including a new bikini at Forever 21 and Wet Seal. It’s this one:


    But the bottom was either too small or wayyyy skimpier than I was comfortable with and they didn’t have a size up for me to try so I’m going to wear it with my bright purple bottoms (which I love). Plus I bought a maxi dress and a big floppy hat at Gap to wear to the beach tomorrow — so ready!

  53. Esquirette :

    I could use some advice. I’ve put myself in an annoying situation, and I’m trying to determine if there is damage control I can do. It basically boils down to me trusting a colleague enough to have some serious bitch sessions about issues at work and realizing too late that my confidence may have been misplaced. I’m usually pretty selective on who I share my opinions with, which is something I told this person on more than one occasion while also indicating that I would appreciate him not sharing our discussions with other people. I considered him an experienced professional, and I was interested in his opinion on things. I was also at a breaking point with certain issues and was glad to have someone to talk to. That said, I always thought he was a little odd but mainly in a harmless way. Recently, several worrisome aspects of his personality have popped up – one of which being that he seems to take in information and process it into a different reality and then share that reality with people as if it is the truth. He has said several things to be that I know now are not true or to be mischaracterized. He also seems to be a gossip — or at least a sharer of a lot of what he learns about people. I am very concerned about how things I’ve told this person may be presented to my colleagues – both in my office and in other offices where I don’t see people as much but he may have opportunity to. I learned from one colleague that this person did say things that he attributed to me but, due to the circumstances, I didn’t ask what those things were. I’m pretty sure there’s nothing I can do except learn a bitter lesson but I’m hoping some of you wise ladies may have some thoughts that may help. Thanks.

    • I think most people probably have observed the same things that you have about him, i.e. that he takes in information and processes in a different reality. If he has attributed certain statements or opinions to you, frankly, I think it would be to your benefit to just deny deny deny and most likely people will assume he was full of it and believe you. And yes, let this be a lesson to keep your mouth shut and only vent to people who don’t work with you.

      • I like Bluejay’s advice – deny all along the way. And look sad, sigh a bit, and tell an anecdote of something he told you that turned out to be patently untrue. That should do it :-). Just be more careful next time, at least try to vent -outside- of work..

  54. Hello all – I’ve been in a bit of a slump the last couple of months and am mustering the courage to go see someone about the depression. I’m completely clueless about how to go about searching for someone – do I need a psychologist, psychiatrist, some other kind of therapist? Can some give prescriptions and others can’t? Thanks to anyone who’s gone through this and can help!

    • I've been there :

      Psychiatrists are MDs and can prescribe medications. They typically do not do talk therapy, but should be able to provide recommendations regarding counselors/therapists/etc.

      Psychologists are PhDs and cannot prescribed medications (except in Louisiana and New Mexico, last time I checked). A psychologist should be able to refer you to someone for a prescription, if he/she determines this is needed. The combination of therapy + medication is one that has worked for a lot of people, myself included.

      There are other professionals who provide therapy – social workers, for example. It’s all a matter of finding someone you feel comfortable with.

      It’s great that you are getting ready to take this first step! Best of luck!

      • Mighty Mouse :

        Lol, your typing skills are far faster than mine. ;)

      • BTW, the prescription privileges in Louisiana for psychologists are hard to obtain – they require a special certification – and I don’t know many who have done it, other than the one woman I know who was part of the charge to get the privileges. I know a lot of psychologists – used to be married to one.

    • Mighty Mouse :

      Good for you–this is a brave step and well-worth the investment in yourself!
      -Psychiatrist–MD or DO; they rx meds. Because they are often in short supply, they may work in conjunction w a psychologist or social worker.
      -Psychologist–usually a PsyD degree. Does counseling but not rx. May work in conjunction w Psychiatrist or Family Dr who takes care of rx.
      -Social Worker–usually MSW; no rx but does counseling. May work in conjunction w Psyciatrist or Family Dr who will do rx.

      Don’t let lack of “prescriptive power” dissuade you from seeing a psychologist or social worker. Talk therapy is excellent treatment for mood disorders and most family docs are comfortable treating “garden variety” depression and anxiety with meds, if needed.

      Be proud of yourself for taking this step! Go for it!

    • Here’s a guide to therapist credentials, including what kinds of training and authorizations they have. Be well. http://therapists.psychologytoday.com/rms/content/therapy_credentials.html

    • I went through this recently – I just called my insurance and asked for an appointment with a psychiatrist. You can also call your regular doctor if you have one (whoever gives you your annual exam) and ask for a referral if you have to have one first.
      For me it was a lot of annoying bureaucrazy (misspelling intentional) to finally get a prescription. I knew from experience talk therapy would do nothing for me but I was forced to go through that for a few sessions first.
      You know yourself and will know if you need talk therapy or a prescription.

    • anonnyugrad :

      I *finally* started therapy after many years of thinking it might be a good idea. I’ve been going for about two months, and I am sooooooo glad I’m going!! I’m seeing a social worker, insurance covers part (I still have a copay), and it’s just great. So congratulations for taking the first step.

  55. Anyone have any bathmat recommendations? We have a long bathroom and am hoping to spruce it up!

    • Anon shopper :

      I really like the microfiber mats at bed bath and beyond. They are cushioned but sleek and they look luxurious.

    • what anon shopper said, BB&B microfiber mats are amazing!

    • I like those BBB mats as well, but they have always ripped after a few washes for me, if those are the ones I am thinking of. We have a bathmat from Costco that is really soft and plush.

  56. Someone on here tipped us all to a Cole Haan sale on Rue La La in early June.

    I received a shipping notice today. My order was placed June 11. It shipped June 30.

    I called to complain about it, and here are some of the things the “concierge” said to me:

    “I don’t know what you expect me to do about it.”

    “We usually tell you you’ll receive items in ten business days. We’re just a little beyond that.”

    “We did ship it.”

    Finally, after I insisted that taking 19 days to ship was unacceptable, she begrudgingly gave me credit for the $9.95 shipping, “But I’m not sure my computer will even let me do that.”

    I’ve sworn off Rue before for losing one of my returns (they blamed UPS), but this time it’s permanent.

    • Anonymous :

      Noted. Buh-bye Rue!

    • That’s terrible! Rue has always been my favorite of the sample sale sites (I want to like Gilt more, but their prices sometimes aren’t very good). And I can’t believe they lost one of your returns – that’s a nightmare because sometimes I return really pricey things (ran and checked my return history after reading your post to make sure nothing fell through! I’m bad about following up.). I will keep a closer eye on them.

      I realize that it’s probably just easier to swear them off (as I did with Lord and Taylor’s abominable online customer service), but you might want to consider trying to go up the chain a little after two bad experiences. That “concierge” needs an attitude adjustment. (And I’d check to make sure that shipping credit goes through, since it sounds like she wasn’t even sure of how to do it.)

  57. Also, for you Comic Sans fans, I had to share this


  58. Anonymous :

    Argh. Just found out that the sleaziest human I’ve ever worked for is getting a prestigious award for his “service to community” which amounts to lining his bank account and donating to political fundraisers and not much else. He wouldn’t serve his community if they paid him!
    This guy has his backers fooled and brags about it openly.
    So frustrating! Grrr…

  59. To celebrate passing my state bar, I bought myself the Michael Kors Very Hollywood scented pen. I’m currently studying for the patent bar and would like to (fingers crossed) celebrate passing on Thursday with a similar pen. Anyone have suggestions of fun pens? Preferably in the $25-100 range. Although, perhaps I should consider something more formal? I guess I’m open to all pen suggestions, as long as it’s something I’d like to keep forever. Thanks, everyone!

  60. Contacting Old Co-Workers :

    Left my previous job almost three years ago. Was told to keep in contact with some of the managers in other areas. I only partially did this – only those that I had outside friendships with previously. This was because my old boss stayed there, was evil, did some things that were technically legal but others did not know about, was under the impression we were best friends when that was the only way to minimize her turning on me like she did her other employees, and I had no intention of keeping in contact with her but knew it would set her off if I was visibly “buddies” with others.

    She is now gone (people actually looked at what she was doing) and there are some people I really liked, could serve as a mentor in my new position, or would be good for networking. Is it too late to reach out to them to reestablish connections? I’m really more interested in the mentoring and getting input on some of the crazy stuff I’m seeing/how to fix them in my current position. If I do go forward, how would I do it? Some of these individuals are in HR so I don’t want to start out with “Sorry for being silent , but this chick was crazy and I wanted to ditch her”.

    • If you do it soon after evil boss is gone, I bet the people you get in touch with will figure out pretty fast why you stayed away/are reaching out now. You could also ask how things are going with the new manager to jog their memories if it seems necessary.

  61. I am trying to find a website that I have seen people refer to on this site, but I can’t figure out how to search old comments. It has beautiful, kind of vintage style wedding dresses, more informal, I think most of the dresses were tea length. Anyone know the site I’m referring to? It’s a little expensive, the dress I liked was about $2,000.

    Also, if anyone can tell me how to search old comments on this site, I’d appreciate it. I tried using the Ligit search box, but it only seemed to give me back articles with the search term, not the comments.

  62. If anyone is reading this, I would like to thank the commenter from a week or so ago who recommended the “Wonderful Edge” Gilligan and O’Malley underwear at Target. I usually wear thongs on the theory that it minimizes the amount of material that goes to wedgie-land.. but I’m 16w pregnant and they’re just not comfortable anymore. The wonderful edges are awesome! They are smooth under dresses and don’t move! And contrary to what I expected, you don’t feel the sillicone at all.. so thank you, thank you, thank you!

    • I didn’t make the recommendation, but I agree, the panties are great (wonderful?). I bought a set after making a crack at the “Wonderful Edge” on the packaging. Bonus, they are much more attractive than my all-cotton granny panties I’d really rather be wearing. ;)

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