Weekend Open Thread

  Marcia Moran "Midnight" 18k Gold-Plated Dark Blue Druzy Organic Stone RingSomething on your mind? Chat about it here.

While photographing my own work jewelry collection this past week, I started thinking about some of my favorite pieces that I probably wouldn’t wear to work — and one of them is definitely the druzy ring that my husband got me for my birthday this year. It’s sparkly but subdued, it wasn’t too expensive so I feel comfortable wearing it in a variety of situations, and I always get comments. This large cocktail ring looks even better than mine — it’s $270 at Endless. (Incidentally, Endless will soon be shuttered and become part of Amazon — so I’m hoping for some great closing sales!) Marcia Moran “Midnight” 18k Gold-Plated Dark Blue Druzy Organic Stone Ring, Size 6



  1. Project 333 :

    Hi ladies. I wanted to discuss Project 333. In the last few months, I’ve been forced to live out my own version of Project 333. I moved to a new city with a suitcase, intending to find permanent housing. Months later, I am still in furnished short term housing. I wear the same few shirts to work week after week. I feel like a caged animal. I ache to be reunited with the contents of my closet.

    Has anybody else tried Project 333 and felt this way?

    • Merabella :

      How long have you been doing this? I would think that after more than 3 months I’d be getting bored too. You may just need a boost in what you have. Get yourself a few new tops or cardigans, or even new accessories to spice it up, but not take up too much space.

    • I’m also curious about this. Is anyone doing this who works in a formal-dress office? Is it do-able?

      • Doable. But if by “formal-dress” you mean “business formal,” count each suit (regardless of its number of pieces) as one item — otherwise, you actually might go nuts.

      • I am doing this and in fact have written about it in several threads this week, including one yesterday where I listed the items I have been wearing for the past two months. It is perfectly doable, though I haven’t been strictly following the rules but have just been doing a version of it.

  2. Ano For This :

    Has anyone ever done VISTA? I am at something of a career crossroads and considering applying to some of the programs as a way to refocus and relaunch my career, and get the hell away from corporate America. I have been working a lucrative but meaningless (to me) career for quite a while now, but the thought of continuing down this path until retirement makes me want to hurl. I also have decent cash savings, so the financial hit of VISTA isn’t really concerning to me. The programs posted as “looking for applicants” are things I’m passionate about, located in areas I would like to live (understand that rural America doesn’t scare me in the least, having grown up in it), and my skills from my current job should transfer pretty well.

    If anyone has done VISTA in the past, I would appreciate some feedback on the experience and the application process, especially timing, which is very vague on the site. Thanks in advance!

    • @ Ano For This: I have been in my career of choice for almost 13 years, and it started with my one-year apprenticeship with Americorps Public Allies, a program of the Corporation for National and Community service, like VISTA. I can’t sing the praises high enough–I had planned on a career in business but the calling wasn’t there. Public Allies (PA) allowed me to work directly in communities (I was in PA Delaware, 1998-1999) in partnership with the University of DE Extension Service. I learned invaluable lessons in public servanthood, conflict “engagement” AND resolution, the importance of “team,” and the concept that waiting on someone else to make positive change is irresponsible, when we have the capacity to do it ourselves. And best of all for me, it prepared me for my career as an Extension agent in Florida, where I now serve in community development and administration. As far as the application process, if you have a location in mind you may want to consider contacting the local VISTA office. But I also highly recommend Public Allies, which you can Google for more info. PA was for ages 18-30 when I participated, and that may have changed by now. Hope this is helpful.

    • I didn’t but my parents met as VISTA volunteers in the 70s. So I’m a product of VISTA literally. :-)

      • a passion for fashion :

        my parents didnt meet, but my mom followed my dad while he did VISTA. I didnt even know it stills existed. this makes me smile.

    • layered bob :

      I had a terrible experience with AmeriCorps, and many of my AmeriCorps friends did too.

      I know that many people have amazing experiences, and I think my site’s issues were mainly site-specific. So go into the interviews with eyes wide open, looking for any sign of mismanagement or disorganization or lack of a clear mission/vision, and you’ll probably be ok.

      • I also had a not-so-great experience. I agree, definitely investigate the agency/organization you’re thinking about working for. Not all VISTAs are created equal.

      • I did the VISTA program right out of college and had a great experience at my organization. Americorps was pretty hands off after the initial weekend training, but there were many VISTAs at my organization, and we had a lot of fun together. Even 6 years out, the people I worked with continue to be some of my best friends and the experience set me on a career path in the non profit world. That being said, a mid-career change is a different experience and I agree with the commenter above that you should choose your organization wisely. Look closely at the management and structure of the organization, pay close attention to the director’s leadership style. Does they have a clear mission and vision, do they have some sort of a strategic plan, how is their financial situation? What do their clients and the community think about them? How do they communicate internally and externally? Many non profits have communication issues and inefficiencies and this is definitely the number one frustration from employees/consultants/volunteers that I’ve worked with coming from a corporate perspective. You need to consider before committing to the role how you will approach change and how you might deal with setbacks, refusal to make changes.
        Americorps seems good about checking out their organizational partners but you should do your own homework. If you have specific skills (ie communications, marketing, fundraising, finance) you might also consider volunteering or serving on a board in your area first. I definitely recommend the VISTA route, but be certain you understand everything involved before you make the move.

    • I was an americorps VISTA and loved it!
      But i agree that the site makes all the difference. For me, I wanted to work with a particular non profit and they happened to take VISTAs, and that was the sole reason i applied to the program. So I was very focused in where I wanted to go. Other people I know that did the program and just applied to Americorps and were placed somewhere didn’t have as good of an experience.
      My experience is that Americorps/VISTA does not provide much, if any support. I had a supervisor in NYC (I was on the west coast) who contacted me about 4 times a year, asked one or two questions and that’s it. That was fine with me, but just know that going in. I think we had a weekend regional training where I met a bunch of other Vistas and had fun, but can’t say I learned a ton.
      I did, however, learn tons and gain great, great, experience at my non profit. At my site, vistas were treated like full members of the staff and I had the opportunity to work at an exciting, well-known organization in a “staff” position straight out of college. It was a great decision.
      Also, one of my supervisors at the organization was a former VISTA who had a mid-career change. She had been a biglaw attorney, done VISTA for a year, and was ultimately hired at the organization. From what I remember, she said it was a huge change in lifestyle, but that she didn’t regret it. She ultimately left the organization to go to a prestigious NGO where she utilized her attorney skills and the connections she made at the non profit, so I think it worked out very well for her.

      If you do it, please report back, I’d love to hear!

    • I did AmeriCorps State, not VISTA, so I can’t comment on the specifics of the application–but I just wanted to encourage you to go for it! It might not be the most well-compensated or prestigious path in the world, but I grew immensely from my two-year stint, and it provided me with both marketable skills and career focus.

      Good luck!

  3. Anne Shirley :

    @HoneyPillows. Everytime I read your name, I think of one of those push-up bras filled with water but with honey. From this day forward my b00b$ shall be known as honey pillows :)

    • Unfortunately, all I think of is HoneyBooBoo. Which is really unfortunate.

      • a dolla make me holla!

      • Actually, I am embarrassed to admit I’ve watched a couple of those shows. Despite the more unfortunate aspects of the show, that little girl is very smart and I think is going to go pretty far in life.

        • Shamefaced :

          Me too, Nonny. I want to laugh and cry at the same time, because I think even the mom is pretty smart, but that lifestyle and lack of hygine and manners…. yeesh. You can see the cycle repeating itself with the unhealthy eating habits, teen pregnancy, etc. But they look so happy!, and then I think maybe I’m the one doing it wrong with my vegetables and teeth brushing and rat race of a white collar job.

          • aesthetic intelligence :

            Oh gosh, you mean maybe the joke is on us?!

          • Blonde Lawyer :

            I haven’t watched the show but my husband and I were driving through a fairly poor town on a weekday. We saw all these people having bbq’s and drinking beers with friends on their lawns. We sat at a red light, watched them laugh, and wondered how much happier they are with their day to day life then “us.” Money can’t buy happiness.

        • I have cousins that live in the same small southern town as the Honey Boo Boo family. They swear they are not “putting on” and are like that in real life.

          One particular incident they described was her in a grocery store parking lot, yelling to passersby that NOBODY ever told her that Ding Dongs make you fat, and how unfair that was, and passing them out/throwing them at people because she was ridding her car of these snacks that she had just discovered were unhealthy.

      • I think of Honey Badger, but I’m concerned that now I’ll think of Honey Boo-Boo instead.

      • Honey Pillows :

        Hmm… Might have to get a new moniker…

        Honey Pillows are fried dough covered in honey and cinnamon sugar sold at a local pizzeria. Naturally, I thought of b00bs, and sn1ggered a little, and decided that would be my handle.

        Honey BooBoo is not an acceptable substitution.

    • a passion for fashion :

      this just made me think of an adorable encounter i had with my son, who is 5, earlier this week. I was in my room cleaning up my clothes that were strewn everywhere and he was helping me put stuff back in drawers. He opened my top drawer and said “oh mom, this is where you keep all of your n!pple covers!” (meaning my [email protected])

      • a passion for fashion :

        and the moral, which it was clearly to late in the day for me to recall, is that my [email protected] will forever be known in our household as n!pple covers.

  4. Anon for this :

    I just want to whine a bit, and hopefully feel better :)

    So far, I’ve spent over $1K on my sister’s wedding up until this point, am not the maid of honor, but got stuck planning the shower. It’s tonight, I feel horrible (infection) and I just want to sleep. I am so not in the state of mind to be nice to people at a bridal shower tonight. Especially since very few people RSVP’d and someone who did is bringing an 8 YEAR OLD to a l1ngere! shower.

    Love my sister, but I’m not even convinced these two should get married, so I suspect all my money and time is going to something that won’t last. (I do realize though, that she’ll {hopefully} remember my efforts and be thankful at least…and do hope for the absolute best for them both)

    I want to go home and sleep, but I can’t take off work, and then have to go straight to shower preparations after work. :/

    • Shower Blues :

      Hang in there! I hope you’re on antibiotics and that they kick in soon and you feel better.

      • Thanks! I am on antibiotics, so I’m hoping they kick in soon too! Started yesterday, so maybe today? (Might be wishful thinking :)

    • Every hour is an hour closer to getting to go home and go to bed!!!

      • That’s so true! (Even though I’m not going home, staying at my sister’s house) But even so…every hour gets me closer to bed and sleep! :)

    • Treat yourself to your favorite coffee/cupcake/snack/shop on your way to the shower tonight.

      • Merabella :

        I second this suggestion. Feel free to give yourself ALL THE TREATS! Just remember that you don’t have to be front and center at this thing. Get all the stuff put out and then just kind of recede into the background during the shower.

        Can you get someone to clean up for you instead of having to do it yourself? Or find someone who can help you out so you aren’t stuck there longer than you need to be?

        • Merabella, That’s very true, and it probably wouldn’t be happy if I was front and center. I will keep that in mind! Hopefully my family pitches in to clean (they usually do), but I plan to ask if they don’t help!

        • x3 on ALL THE TREATS!

          Hoping everything goes as smoothly as possible so, as others have said, you can make your appearance and sort of fade into the background until you can get some well deserved rest. Feel better!

      • I just may do that. Can’t shop because I’m on a shopping ban, but Starbucks may get another customer this afternoon to keep me happy on the hour long drive up to my Mom’s house! :)

        • I think you need some scones and liquid deliciousness to help the antibiotics fight the infection. I am currently finishing off a blackberry scone and blended chai as some preventative medicine.

    • Ugh, that sucks! I hate showers in general, and it’s even worse when you have to plan one. Why do only the women get stuck having to endure these cutesy themes and games and the expense of an additional present? (I do say this as someone who is being forced by in-laws to have a shower, so take it for what it’s worth :) )

      • I hate showers in general too (and mostly weddings for what it’s worth.) I sympathize with you on the in-laws…I was forced to have a wedding and TWO showers by my in-laws. I was not a happy camper.

        I also have a baby shower this weekend…both showers are an hour away from home, so I don’t get to go home! I’m staying with family to save gas rather than driving up three times this weekend (my husband’s request :/) .

        I think men should be forced to attend, so they understand our pain. :) haha.

        • Merabella :

          Can you bail on the baby shower and just go home? Sometimes you just have to say “Sorry dude, I care about your baby and all, but I love me, and I need to take care of myself.”

          • I wish I could. The baby belongs to my other sister…so I’m pretty much expected to be there. I may not stay the entire time though.

        • You’re sick. You get to bail on the baby shower. You wouldn’t want to get the soon to be mommy ill (all about spinning it). Send your regrets and take the nyquil nap :)

          • True – mention it to your mom and other sister this evening about how you’re coming down with something.

          • True story. I had to stay in a hotel when my pregnant sister-in-law came to stay with us during the swine flu thing because they were worried I’d give it to her (there were like give of them and only one of me). Of course I didn’t have swine flu…but I did have a fever and fevers can be bad for pregnant ladies and babies no matter what…so…

          • Yeah, I think you have a good excuse for the baby shower. I definitely would not go. Maybe your other sister can set up a video chat for you, at least for the present opening.

          • If you have a diagnosed infection please don’t go to the baby shower. My adorable nephew gave me a cold when I was 6.5 months pregnant that then turned into a sinus infection b/c pregnant women are really limited in terms of the drugs they can take. I finally got a doctor to prescribe me something to kick the sinus infection but I was totally miserable for a good month.
            Oh – and now they’ve linked fevers/infections in the mom during pregnancy to an increased rise in autism. Not trying to start a firestorm over that – but a casual mention of that news on top of the infection should be more than enough to get you out of the shower!

          • I may take the “I’m sick and need to rest” route, though my infection isn’t contageous at all (wisdom tooth that is growing in is infected, makes it hard to eat, and the infection is in my lymph nodes in my throat, so I’m just feeling icky.). It sounds lame, but it really is miserable.

          • You should DEFINITELY talk to your family at the beginning of the shower tonight, not the end, tell them your tooth infection is making you feel horrible, and ask someone else to take responsibility ahead of time for the clean up, so you can go straight to bed as soon as everyone leaves. SERIOUSLY. You need to do a little bit of advocating for yourself. And once you’ve done all the planning and spent money and the setup, and you are SICK, it is perfectly reasonable for you to ask someone else to clean up, and let you go to bed and get rest, *For The Baby Shower Tomorrow*. You need to ask for things for yourself sometimes, sweetie, please please please don’t clean up and get yourself to bed as soon as possible. Huggs!!

  5. Need recommendations on books for career/lifestyle

    Earlier this week, Kat recommended “Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office” to the Dazed and Confused Co-worker. I love this book and recommend it to all early career women (and certain sections to a few men that I’m close with that were getting walked on at work because they are too “nice”).

    What other career/lifestyle books does the hive recommend as must reads? My list is NGDCTCO, GTD and Suze Orman’s “The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous and Broke”. I am also loving the Ask A Manager blog (not a manager now but considering the idea for future career goals), and a big thanks to whoever it was who recommended the Pomodoro technique sometime recently – this is one of my long breaks on that technique right now! Any other books/blogs/websites/techniques I should know about?

    • ChocCityB&R :

      I know you asked for books, but I really like the career tools podcasts that someone here rec’ed a while back.

    • AnonInfinity :

      What is your career? If you’re a new(ish) lawyer, there are some good career books out there.

      • Not a lawyer – I’m a scientist in R&D, out of school for 10 years, in industry for the past 7. Not too new to my career, but I am always willing to learn more and take advice. I work in a lab so my coworker mainly wear jeans/khakis and steel toed shoes are a daily requirement. I read this blog to drool over possibilities and to keep in touch with what the trends are, as well as for the comments, since most of the clothes wouldn’t make sense to me. I do occasionally have a need to dress up when meeting with clients or suppliers, so I like to keep an eye on suggestions for classics that I can wear for years. I’m starting to try to balance “dress for the job you want, not the job you have” with “don’t spend too much money on clothes that are regularly ruined”.

        • AnonInfinity :

          Oh awesome… That sounds like a fun job.

          • Sometimes its fun. Sometimes its just a job. The parts that you see on tv/movies involving scientists are actually about 10% of what we actually do all day, on a good day, and there usually aren’t very many “EUREKA!” moments – lots more “well that didn’t work, now what?” moments. And plenty of office politics and drama, often involving people with limited people/social skills. Fun times. But hey, if it was that fun, they wouldn’t have to pay us to do it.

            Thanks for the suggestions everyone, keep them coming!

        • LadyEnginerd :

          What color is your parachute was written by a guy whose degree is in the sciences, I believe. While nominally a book about job hunting, the advice about your career trajectory and finding a good fit for you is invaluable.

    • Mountain Girl :

      We could be twins! I love GTD and I also took the recommendation for the pomodoro technique from this website. I have found that it totally focuses my attention and makes me absolutely more productive. I found a great little download for the PC that times it for me. Thanks ‘rettes for the recommendations.

    • I like Crucial Conversations, about how to communicate difficult news to coworkers and bosses without getting defensive or inviting others to get defensive. Hard to implement, but awesome to think about.

    • There’s a list on the “Fans of the website ” group on GoodReads.

      Here are some of the books on the list:
      * Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions by Dan Ariely
      * Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High by Kerry Patterson
      * Pitch Like a Girl: Get Respect, Get Noticed, Get What You Want by Ronna Lichtenberg
      * The No A**hole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn’t by Robert I. Sutton
      * Good Enough Is the New Perfect by Becky Beaupre Gillespie

  6. Wedding wear help? :

    What would you wear to a wedding under these conditions? I need suggestions!

    – Held at a midwestern winery (Midwest relevant because weddings are less dressy than some other regions)
    – Afternoon outdoor ceremony, evening indoor dinner/dance
    – October, could still be pretty warm
    – I’m 5’10” and prefer something at the knee
    – I’m relatively slim but out of shape post-baby (waist/belly area = blech)

    I’ve been doing a lot of online browsing, and am stumped. Help!

    • Having just addressed dresses for tallies (hollah) on my tumblr, I have a few ideas. But what about this dress from Boden? http://www.bodenusa.com/en-US/Womens-Dresses/Below-Knee-Dresses/WH380/Womens-Notch-Neck-Shift.html?NavGroupID=4

      Actually, they have several dresses this season that might work. Also, Lands End got good reviews for length and they always have great dresses.

    • This Suzi Chin dress flatters a lot of us, and is very forgiving. I get a lot of wear out of mine – work, dinners out, religious ceremonies and it can be accessorized in different ways.


    • Merabella :

      I have a JCrew bridesmaids dress that I got for my sisters wedding 2 years ago, and I have made use of it for several weddings/office Christmas parties/whatever. It is chiffon so if I need to dress it down I will wear it with a cardigan of some sort, maybe a beaded one, or a jacket. This might be a nice option for the wedding because it could be hot, or it could be cold, this way you have layers.

  7. Anyone ever have to deal with being given admin type work at the office, when you’re not an admin?

    I’m JD/admitted…but only working a “JD preferred” corporate position right now. Most of my work product is substantive writing on tax, corporate law/issues. I have two supervisors, one immediate, one I work with maybe 1/3 of the time. The one I work with less tends to ask me to do things that, while harmless, make me actually wonder why he’s asking ME to do them (we have admins in the office). It ranges from making copies to making lunch reservations…today I got back from grabbing lunch, and there’s a note on my desk asking to make ONE power point slide, he just needed a title. It would literally take a tenth of the time to just make it himself as it does to walk all the way to my cubicle and write up the note about he wanted.

    I hope to not be in this job too much longer, I want to get out and practice…so I’m inclined to just let it roll off my shoulder…but it still makes me want to yell “I have degrees! I’m supposed to be writing reports, not making your copies!”

    Anyone else ever go through this? If nothing else, at least I got to vent : )

    • As a first year associate working late, I once had to show a senior partner how to attach files to emails, as his secretary had left for the day and he had no idea how to do it himself. No idea if this is the case with your one supervisor, but just suggesting that making a power point slide with a title is actually extremely challenging to many people who didn’t grow up with MS Office.

      • Many of the people in my office ask me to help them with MS Office, particularly power point. (Might be as a result of being 15-20 years younger than everyone in this part of the building, but they know I’m good with it.) I totally don’t mind when it’s something they don’t know how to do, but I know this guy knows how to work the basics of powerpoint. Even colleagues in the office point out that the stuff he asks me to do is a little ridiculous.

        But to everyone who replied, it feels so good to know I’m not the only one out there who feels this way sometimes!

    • One of the partners I occasionally work for does stuff like this. After a while in meetings when he would ask me to put something on his calendar or find someone’s phone number I just started saying things like, “Ok, I’ll probably just have [paralegal] do that,” or “Do you mind if I ask [admin person] to do that?” He’s always been fine with it. I hope it shows him that I can do higher-level things (he does give me these as well), and that I know how to delegate, but even if he doesn’t notice those things about me, at least I’m not stuck doing the boring admin stuff. Can you just staff these tasks out to someone who is an admin?

    • I once had a boss that assumed that in addition to my job responsibilities I was also his admin. Seriously. He had no understanding of what my job was. So I feel you. My advice is that you delegate to the admins. If he asks for lunch or travel, ask the admins, etc.

    • As a first year BigLaw associate, I had to wait around for several late nights (like into 3:00 or 4:00am territory) in case the mid-level needed anything. Where “anything” might mean a snack from the vending machine. Or making a copy (“a” copy as in one sheet of paper), or putting a stamp on an envelope (not finding one, but taking a stamp on her desk and putting it on an evelope on her desk). Ugh, thank you for this. Sometimes I get nostalgic for BigLaw (the high profile cases! the sleek car service cars! the glass and steel office buildings!) but I am really thankful right now that I’m not sitting around waiting for some fourth year to ask for a paper clip.

    • Uh, been there. Years ago. Turned out that I was far more effecient than the admin, so someone got wise and started bypassing the admin and asking me to do stuff.

      In my job, I confronted them (my job was NOT admin!) and suggested I spend time training the admin. If you are annoyed enough to say something, you might try a conversation about needing them to tell you where your admin’s job ends and yours begins. Of course, if this is a small org with an “all hands on deck” mentality, you may be stuck.

    • lawsuited :

      I’m a first year associate in a law firm, but because of my age and relative tech savvy, senior lawyers often ask me to help out with mundane computer-related tasks and problems. It doesn’t bother me.

    • This is the storey of my LIFE! I am admitted to the BAR in NY and have alot of expierence, but I still have to do alot of word proecesssing of my cases MYSELF, and ONLEY when I am done do I give it to the secretary for formatteing and finalizing! Can you imagine? I do the typeing work on all of the document’s FIRST, then give it to the SECRETARY! OMG! FOOEY on that!!!

      If it make’s you feel any better, I also do all of the copeying, and collateing of document’s, and I even prepare the FEDEX lables while she sit’s back and attend’s to the other partner all the time. FOOEY on that also.

      So when there was an Assistant’s day in April, guess what? I took MYSELF out for DELLI! Yay!!!!

      In re DELLI, I had it again today! My tuchus is getting so big now just thinkeing about the corn beef I got when Jim brought it over. It was NOT from Pastrami Queen however. He did NOT want to go uptown even though it is MY fave. He got it from some place I do not know on 46th Street. It was NOT that great. The corn beef was dry and they did NOT have good pickels. FOOEY! Anyway, we went over some of the diliegience material and he gave me a checklist he wanted me to follow when we go on site. I told him I was developeing my OWN checklist, but he did NOT like what I showed him. I spent 3 hour’s developeing that checklist, and the manageing partner told me that I could NOT bill for it. FOOEY. I do not know why I am workeing for nothing.

      Jim said that he knows of a place near the hotel we will be staying at that has Southern Barbaquuue. I do NOT like that, but he said we should try it. We shall see. I may wind up eateing COBB salad now that I am 11 lbs overweight. FOOEY!

    • Do you have an admin asst for your department? Because we have no admin assts where I work, and I do everything from make photocopies to go to CVS to buy bottled water for a meeting, and so does my boss and every other lawyer at my office.

    • gov't attorney :

      This was very common at my old job. I would say about 1/3 of my time was spent doing something a legal assistant could have been doing. The managing attorney really didn’t feel comfortable having assistants do certain tasks, and there were logistical issues that also resulted in attorneys doing a lot of administrative work.

      Now I’m sort of in the opposite situation. My assistant prefers to do some things herself that attorneys typically do in my group. There were benefits to the former system, as I felt like I really knew more about the organization’s processes than I do in the new system. Now everything just goes over my head and I feel like I am never going to be able to figure it out.

      • I am ad admin at an asset management firm, and I support two Sr. VP’s. This is not biglaw (although I don’t think many of you work in biglaw, but anyway…). Sometimes my bosses will delegate things to analysts when admins are already busy doing something.

        Also, I have been told *very* specifically that the more sr person gets priority over the analyst (no matter what). So maybe that affects it somehow?

        This is a long way of me saying that your bosses are well-aware. They just don’t care.

        —patiently awaits flames—

  8. tattoo reminder :

    I’m going through a life-altering family crisis that will probably last for quite a while, and I had the out-of-character thought that I kind of want to get a tattoo related to it. I’ve never wanted a tattoo, largely because I’ve always felt that there’s been nothing in my life so far that’s worth etching onto my body permanently. Well, now there is. But, I’m not sure that I actually want a reminder of this time in my life, or that I’d want to explain to strangers the meaning of a tattoo if they asked about it. I also feel odd about it because if I were to get a tattoo related to this time, I’d want it in a highly visible place, like my wrist or the top of my foot (ie: when I’m getting riled up about stuff I can quickly look at the tattoo and remember that I’m not defined by this situation). Thoughts on this? I’m not against tattoos per se, but I’ve never considered getting one, and I worry about permanently marking my body with something directly related to a tumultuous time.

    • If it were me, I’d wait until the tumultuous time had passed before doing anything permanent to my body. Because I think only with a little perspective would I have enough of an idea about how I felt about it all to know what I really wanted to say or feel about it for the rest of my life.

      And if you’re going to get a tattoo, I understand the urge to put it somewhere visible…but maybe put it somewhere not so visible but easily accessible? Like, where you could just pull your shirt up and peek at it or something? Because depending on what profession your in visible tattoos can be a real issue. And do you really, really want to have to explain whatever is going on right now to people for the rest of your life whenever they notice the tattoo?

      Anyway, these are all just my thoughts. And obviously others will disagree. But I would wait.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      I’d wait until either the crisis has passed or you are a little less emotional about it before making the decision. Not on the same level as it was not life altering but still very emotional, I considered getting a tattoo when my family dog died. I actually like tattoos even thiugh I din’t have any myself and many of my family members have them, but I’m glad that I didn’t decide to get one in that moment. Now that some time has passed and I went through the grieving process, I don’t feel the same way about getting a tattoo related to that anymore. It’s hard to see that when you are in the middle of the emotional turmoil. I’m not saying don’t get one, just try to decide when all the emotions aren’t completely fresh.

    • The standard advice is not to make large, unchangable decisions (selling a house, giving away money, getting married/divorced) when grieving or going through a crisis like when you mourn a death, a divorce, etc. I think that applies to tattoos too, especially ones that aren’t normally hidden to the public/strangers. Not to be flip, but maybe you do something less permenant (like paint one fingernail blue or wear an elastic on your wrist)while you think about it? Or get a meaninful necklace with a cameo or locket to wear? An engraved watch?

      Best of luck to you as you go through this difficult time.

    • AnonInfinity :

      Have you thought about doing something less permanent, like writing your phrase on a slip of paper in your wallet so you can get it out and look at it if you’d like?

      I am not against tattoos, generally, but if you’re having a lot of hesitation, I think you should try less permanent options first. A few months from now, get the tattoo if you still want it.

      Another thing to think about is that people will ask you about it if it’s somewhere visible. It’s a pretty common topic of conversation to ask someone what a visible tattoo means or why a person chose that particular tattoo. Of course you don’t owe an explanation to anyone, but consider whether you’ll start getting annoyed when people ask about it.

    • Would you consider commissioning a bracelet or anklet with the symbol/word you wanted to tattoo? It’s very easy to do, thanks to etsy, and is less permanent than a tattoo, even though you could wear this item every day.

      • You can actually get a custom silicone wristband a-la LiveStrong. You could wear it with the writing turned in if it is something that you don’t want visible all the time.

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      I would say this as someone who has a tattoo – a great thing for you to do now, while you’ve got the tattoo “bug” is to do some research on local artists, find one you like and pay them their flat hourly rate for them to draw up a tattoo for you. This will help you feel like you’re doing something toward this “want” of a tattoo.

      Then take that design home. Put it up on your mirror, so that you see it every day. And sit with it for a while (I sat with mine for a little over a year). It’s going to be on your body, you want to have some time with it to be comfortable before you put it there. Every time you make a change to it, mentally add a bit of time to the “sit with it” timing. If at the end of that time frame, you still want it? Go for it!

      • This sounds silly, but I had a friend ‘draw’ my tattoo on me in permanent ink about a year before I truly got it done. It was a simple design, but it helped me get used to the idea of the tattoo’s size and placement and it made me much more sure about getting it. Is something like that feasible for you?

        • tattoo reminder :

          That’s a thought. I’m also in the midst of transitioning to a new position with a new company, so I feel like it would be better to wait until I’ve been there for a few months before I come in with a tattoo-like design. It’s a creative agency, and many people there have huge visible tattoos (one guy has designs that cover half of both forearms), so it wouldn’t be a huge issue, but I would feel a little weird showing up my first day with a visible semi-permanent design.

          • If you’re thinking of putting it in a spot where you wouldn’t want to show up to a new job with it, I’d advise you not to get it at all. Ever. I do get that the semi-permanent thing is a bit weirder than permanent, but still. You never know what the culture at another agency might be like, or if you’ll want to go in-house somewhere, or switch fields entirely. Also: tattoos tend not to age nicely. When you’re 65, you are not going to want to be seeing this tattoo all the time.

            I would strongly recommend finding another way to carry the message around with you.

        • I was going to suggest this. A friend of mine was big on tattoos, and would have gotten one every weekend if that was feasible. Instead, she took to “planning” them by drawing them with permanent marker wherever she wanted them to go. This ended up working out well for her, because there were several designs that she got tired of, wanted small, didn’t like the placement of, that were nixed before she got the tattoo itself. After the “newness” of the tattoo idea wore off it just didn’t seem good to her anymore.

    • My sister and I had a really bad two years where our mom died (unexpectedly), our grandma died, and I ended up in the hospital for a month with a serious illness. She got a tattoo on her wrist of the letter my mom and my name starts with, stenciled in my mom’s handwriting. She waited about a year and a half after my mom passed to do this and I know she does not regret it at all. Of course, your situation may be different in such a way that it may bring both positive and negative associations. I would give yourself some time to sit on it. I do think your concern about having to explain the meaning behind it is valid because people ask my sister about her tattoos often.

    • tattoo reminder :

      OP here – these are all great suggestions and pretty much confirm my hesitation for doing it in the first place. I’ll think about some kind of alternative and maybe go with the design-on-the-mirror for a while.

      • health care anon :

        White tattoos are lovely and are difficult to see (and don’t really stay on well for long) that might be an option. Find a good artist that you feel comfortable with, explain your situation, what you want, pay the artist to stencil it on you for a while, and think of color schemes that will work. White is always good and low key/ low visibility

    • big dipper :

      Best advice I ever got about tattoos – Sketch out the design you want, tack it to your mirror, and look at it every day for a year. If you still want it after a year, get it!

  9. Sad looking undies :

    Hi ladies – underwear threadjack. A few years ago, Gap made my most perfect underwear. Full coverage in the back, low rise, with a v-shaped lace panel at the waist, so shaped like the Hanky Panky V-kini from the front. Gap has changed the fit, and now the lace panel is higher up and goes straight across, and something in the seat just doesn’t fit right anymore. I really love the low rise, v-shape front, but every other brand I have tried (Honeydew, the V-kini itself, countless others) just does not have enough seat coverage. My rear is sort of wide and flat, so my issue is coverage from side to side. Every pair of undies cuts my cheeks in half and creates VPL (even ones labeled full coverage). When I size up, I just get more material as though I had more booty, not more material width-wise. I also loathe thongs and refuse to wear them. Anyone have suggestions for the wide of butt?

    • Jacqueline :

      I loved those, too! I mention this to the salesperson every time I go to Gap Body. They were the perfect fit for me (similar body type to yours), and for probably a year or two now, I wasn’t able to find anything else in that price range that compares.*

      But I have good news! I did find some comparable ones at Gap Body within the last month. The fit is slightly different, but they still had ample seat coverage and the V-shaped lace panel. They came in a dark grey, black, nude, and a few other fun colors like coral and neon yellow. I bought these and can attest to their great fit! They were the closest thing I’ve found to the Hanky-Panky-esque ones from a few years ago. Have you been there recently?

      *I know this sounds overly dramatic, but a good fit is hard to find! And when they don’t fit quite right, they bother you all day.

      • Do they have them on the website? I’m not finding anything that fits the description.

    • Sad looking undies :

      Meant to add, though I have babied by beloved Gap undies, they are getting gross – worn, overwashed, waistband separating fr0m the main body, etc. – so hence the handle. I desperately need to replace them. Desperately.

    • Have you tried the hanky panky v-kinis (not thongs)?
      Also, if it’s more vpl issue – try boy shorts.

      • Sad looking undies :

        I find a lot of butt peeks out the bottom of boy shorts/girl shorts, or they ride up in the front due to my thighs. Maybe I am just not trying the wrong ones. I don’t know whose butt they make underwear for, but it’s definitely not mine :(

        • I have a wide, flat butt as well, it’s really hard to find good undies that fit. I love the Maidenform boyshorts for dress pants, but they tend to ride up with jeans, so I may try the new Gap ones recommended above.


    • I have the exact same problem, and I swear by the stretchy cotton boxer briefs they sell in 3 packs by the register at H & M. I’ve recommended them several times before. They are not particularly low-rise, but I roll the waistband down a couple notches and find that solves the problem without creating any bulging or discomfort. Be careful to get the right ones, though, because they also sell another kind that has seams in the back. The ones I am talking about are always by the register, they come in a 3pack with no plastic wrapping, the other kind is in the mens’ section.

  10. Hey, all—

    I seem to recall that some of the ladies tried Jag pull-on jeans. I’m petite but banapple shaped (prob like 34, 30-31, 36). It’s easy to look good in jeans while standing, but as soon as I sit—ugh, forget it. Have the Jag pull-ons held up? Do they minimize muffin-top syndrome? Have they stretched out (in the legs, waist, whatever)?

    Thanks in advance!

    • I ordered them during the NAS and haven’t worn them yet in public (it’s still too hot here for regular denim), but the ones I got were fitted a bit more for a pear shape, I think. I got that little gap thing at the top of my thighs because they are a bit big there. I have fairly straight hips and narrow but muscular thighs and a tummy.

    • Okay…not to be all over this thread early on. I have two pairs of the Jag jeans and I think they’ve held up well. I joke that they’re like really high quality pajama jeans — so the legs and such hold up like “real jeans” but the waistband is stretchy enough to avoid the discomfort that comes with sitting in many types of regular jeans.

      Also, I’ve never heard the phrase banapple shaped before, and it makes me giggle.

    • I’ve had mine for over a year, and they’ve held up great. I love wearing them with a top layer that I’m belting over them – like a belted sweater or tunic. No funny lumps or bumps, standing or sitting.

    • I’m a plus size and bought mine on super sale from Eloquii. I have a fat, flabby tummy. I LOVE THEM. Several reasons: they do minimize muffin top (I think). They also look better when you are wearing a closer fitting long shirt- no fly bumb, smooth all around etc. Incredibly comfortable- no little pinches or zipper issues or whatever.

      Mine have not stretched out. They hold up better through the day and last month than my gap jeans. I want more. I now want all my jeans to be Jag Pull ons. Where can I get more in a 16 or 18W???!!

      • AnotherLadyLawyer :

        CJ – Have you ordered anything else from Eloquii? I keep putting things in my cart and then deciding oh, I’ll wait/oh, I’m not sure. Anything you ordered you love?

        • Sydney Bristow :

          I’ve ordered a bunch of stuff from Eloquii that I really like. Actually, most of it doesn’t fit so if you are a size 18 or 20 and interested I’m going to try and out things up on rehash this weekend (I keep saying that, but I’m going to really really try!). I’d post links, but it looks like everything was from a season or two ago so they aren’t available anymore. Anyway, I really loved a ponte (“divine knit” I think) faux wrap dress with a belt, a green sheath dress that also came with a belt, and the signature pencil skirt that looks like its still available. The quality was nice for all of those. I also got some basic cardigans that have been great. The fabric is fairly thick. I’ve been kind of indifferent on their suits, but I thinks it’s just because they didn’t fit me well.

          I’d definitely recommend buying from them. Be aware that the return window is only 30 days though (only 7 if you want free return shipping) so try things in right away when they arrive!

        • I love Eloquii! I have a closet full of their skirts, plus a few tops, sweaters, and a dress. I’ve only gotten a couple of things that I didn’t love, and mostly that was because I didn’t read carefully enough on the website (I really don’t love shopping online). I started with them when I tried on a dress at the Limited that just didn’t quite fit in the biggest size they had in stock. The same dress from Eloquii fit beautifully, and I was hooked. Plus, free returns!

        • I’ll bite. I’m borderline plus sized and can’t always wear regular plus because it’s too boxy on me. I ordered the Eloquii “curvy fit” jacket and skirt and am overjoyed. It’s such a good idea I don’t know why more plus manufacturers don’t offer different shapes in their sizing.

          • AnotherLadyLawyer :

            Thanks!!! The jacket/skirt suit combos are what keep going into my cart (love separates!), but jackets are so tricky since I’m short and roundish. Maybe I’ll give them a whirl.

        • Yes. I have a grey suit and a navy suit in different fabrics. No skirts, I mostly wear pants. I also have a tweed jacket with a belt and 2 tops. I think it is not any lower or higher quality than the Limited. (It seems like some brands cut quality when they go plus size). Their site is not well designed. The Jag jeans I bought were called Jeggings. They are totally straight leg. narrow jeans, and not in any way jeggings. It is hard to find the pants that go with a suit jacket. In my first order, I ordered the wrong pants (apparently) and had to return and re-order. That was kind of a mess. They don’t really have their customer service together. But when the right stuff finally came it included a garment bag.

          They keep having sales, but I havent’ found anythign to buy since July. Maybe I just don’t like this season. They do have a blazer that is similar to the much discussed Gap Academy Blazer.

          Definitly don’t pay full price right now. There’s a B1G1 50%, or a 40% off total order, or 30% off all new items or whatever almost every week.

          • AnotherLadyLawyer :

            Thanks!!! BTW, there are three pairs of JAG jeans in women’s sizes on Zappos, two of which are on sale. Not sure if they’re the same cut, but maybe?

          • Anne Bronte :

            Do the Jag jeans run big? It’s so hard to know with plus sizes. And do they stretch out?

          • I ordered 1 size down. I don’t think they run big, but in the pull ons you want them a little tighter. However, I saw a review on some saying that maybe they’ve resized.

    • I’m wearing them today and love them! I am similarly shaped, and love these. I will say that they’re a bit high-rise for me, but I’m 5’3″. Still, not terrible. I would go down a size–though this is apparently not true if you get black (black doesn’t stretch as well for some reason).

      • By the way, if anyone knows of any other decent quality stretchy jeans that have a lower rise, let me know!

      • lawsuited :

        High rise is the besty best. It feels like my pants are giving me a hug :)

    • I have them too but am pear shaped. I have two pairs in the same size. One was bought at Nordstrom and one was bought through 6pm. One of the pairs has stretched out, but I don’t know which pair.

      • Thanks, everyone for your feedback. I went to Nordstrom and am sorry to report that these jeans were crazy unflattering on me. Holy cow, were they unflattering. I tried the petite cut and the regular (I’m 5′ 2″). Then I tried a boatload of premium cut jeans (I’ve had luck with Joe’s before—alas, not this time). Finally, I found this wonderful woman about my mother’s age who pointed me to the (horribly named) Wit & Wisdom Denim Leggings and my day suddenly became so much better. They would be baggy-waisted on pear types, I think, but for banapples like me, they are a godsend. And $64! Of course I also bought a couple of tops. Anywho, here’s the link to what I got, for those of you who want an alternative to Jag (these are not pull-on, btw): http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/wit-wisdom-denim-leggings-indigo-wash-nordstrom-exclusive/3313837?origin=keywordsearch&contextualcategoryid=0&fashionColor=&resultback=657#BVRRWidgetID

        • Oh! And I’m 5’2″, about 128 right now, and both the 4 and 6 fit fine. I went with the larger size because I wanted them to look casual and skinny but not legging-y. I usually wear a small top and 4-6 on bottom, depending on how flagrant the vanity sizing.

  11. I found a pair of pink ones at a discount store – the material is somewhere between khaki and denim. I love the wide waistband and the fit (I am petite and curvy) but they stretch out a LOT. the denim ones might not be as bad. I debated between a 6 (hard to pull over my hips, had to wiggle out of them in the dressing room) and 8 (easy pull on but baggy in the rear when I tried them) and I am glad I went with the 6 because they get baggy by mid-day. They are super comfy, though. The straight-up denim might not be as bad with the stretching.

    • Sorry meant for Jennifer above

    • I tried on a couple pairs of the non-denim ones and they weren’t nearly as flattering as the denim JAGs in my opinion. The denim is more substantial and doesn’t stretch much (in case you’re interested Me Me).

  12. I mentioned yesterday that I had ordered a ring to make myself feel better. Here it is: http://www.ross-simons.com/products/781237.html
    It looks big on the mannequin but I have fairly large hands with long, tapered fingers, so I’m hoping it’s not too enormous!

    Feeling better. I got some sleep and finished the last of my classes for the week at 1:00 today. My boss called in sick for two days so that took a little pressure off and I was able to finish writing an article proposal that is due tomorrow. I hope it gets accepted!

    • Wow, that is amazingly beautiful! So unusual. I absolutely love it.

      And good luck on your article!

    • Sydney Bristow :

      Oohhhh pretty! Glad to hear you are feeling better too. Hopefully you’ll be able to have a relaxing weekend too!

    • That is GORGEOUS!! Can you report back on how large it was? Considering buying it as well…

      • Thanks! I will – although Ross-Simons is slow to ship so it may be awhile.

    • Excellent choice – beautiful.

    • Nice!

    • Are you kidding me?!?! That is GORGH!!! I am super jelly, enjoy it ;o)

      And, im glad dumb boss has not been around, but what is with him?!? he seems so manic already, he’s either like: “BlahblahblahGOGOGODoThisDoThat101ThingsBlahBlahBlah” and then all of a sudden he’s just: “Oh, im not in for two days at the beginning of the semester?” what a weirdo ;oP

    • That ring is stunning! And I’m glad to hear that you’re feeling better. I hope that things keep moving on an upward trajectory :)

    • Love it!!

    • Good luck with the proposal. And wow, what a gorgeous ring! Good for you for treating yourself. :-)

  13. I’ve had mine for over a year, and they’ve held up great. I love wearing them with a top layer that I’m belting over them – like a belted sweater or tunic. No funny lumps or bumps, standing or sitting.

  14. Ugh. Two job rejections today. One was pretty much my dream job and I was qualified (at least on paper) to do it. Didn’t even get beyond the HR review in the online system. I feel like wine and cookies may be in order this evening.

    • The worst. I’ve been there. Wine and cookies (and an escape-y movie) are great solutions.

    • So sorry to hear, but its possible that the system is screwed up and you still have a chance. When I in the process of applying for my current job, I got a “we like your resume, please fill out this info online by the end of the week” email from HR. It was really basic stuff, but at the end of filling it all out it basically told me “thanks but no thanks”. I bawled my eyes out, thinking I had been ruled out of the company for something stupid like my undergrad GPA 8 years after I had graduated and that I was never going to get a job there. A week later I got a call from HR asking me to come in for an interview – it turns out that they had gone with someone internal for the job that gave me the initial rejection, and the system didn’t have a way to tell me “the position isn’t open anymore” as opposed to “you suck, we don’t want you”. They interviewed me for the newly vacated position, which I got. So do some wine and cookie-ing, but be aware that online HR systems are dumb and buggy so you might not really be ruled out for your dream job. And if a company does rule out an “on paper” perfect candidate with their online system, you probably don’t want to work there anyway as they probably have even bigger problems.

    • I’m sorry! Just remember this isn’t the end of the road. I was rejected from my dream job twice (and I also felt qualified each time I applied and interviewed), but the third time I got the position. Some things take time. It doesn’t mean you won’t get there eventually. I know that may not help you feel better now, but it’s true. It might just work out!

  15. Work with someone who makes me want to bang my head on my desk. Just had a meeting with him that makes me want to bang my head on five desks. Very happy it’s Friday.

    • Wine and cookies for you too!

    • I had a whole conference call this morning (at 6:30am) that made me want to bang my head on a bajillion desks.

      Also, I’ve discovered my perfect ‘bad day’ dinner: Brownies and Whiskey. You. Are. Welcome. ;)

    • I’m glad I’m not the only one who had a hard week. BLAAAAH. Need vacay.

  16. Supporting Seattleite :

    This posting is an update on Seattleite, who is being treated for breast cancer.

    She had a single mastectomy last week, which went well.

    Based on what the doctors found during surgery and the subsequent pathology, they have concluded she has an aggressive form of cancer, which will require 8 rounds of chemotherapy (once every three weeks) and radiation (for about another seven weeks). She still has to have a PET scan to determine whether the cancer metastisized, but the odds are good that it has not.

    The doctors are optimistic about her prognosis because she is young and healthy and should be able to handle aggressive therapy.

    If you’d like to email her (well wishes, funny emails to entertain her, etc.), her email address is: [email protected]

    If you’d like to join the C*rp*rette snail mail Operation Support Seattleite, I’ve been losely organizing it so that she regularly receives mail. Please feel free to email me at [email protected]

    I know she appreciates all thoughts and prayers that come her way.


    • This is so nice of you to be so supportive during a rough, rough time. Three cheers for the C-r e t t e community!

    • This is so nice! You should repost this to a weekday thread also — since I know many people lose track of the weekend threads early. :-)

    • springtime :

      Sending love to Seattleite. (((((((((((hugs)))))))))))

    • Seattleite :

      “I know she appreciates all thoughts and prayers that come her way.”

      I do, I do, I do. You ladies make me shed tears of gratitude almost daily.

  17. Even though this probably leads to over-shopping (and the 333 mentioned here is probably something I should try), I love the thrill of finding a great deal. What are some of the best deals that you’ve gotten? Last Friday I found a pair of black exotic embossed leather heels at AT for $5.54!

    • I raided CB2’s dining sale. I will probably regret not getting a bunch of Humble Pie plates for gifts.

    • AT must do these crazy markdowns a lot. I once hemmed and hawed over a gray blazer there only to find out at a register that it was $6.

      Other steals: DKNY leather riding boots for $20; the most gorgeous long-sleeved Jcrew suiting dress for $25; silk Armani dress pants for $20; flouncy Cacherel skirt for $15; and La Prairie moisturizer/eye cream/serum gift box set for $5.

      • What is your secret?!!

        • I shop at really random places and get lucky. Almost all of these were very unexpected purchases. Not like I went looking for boots and found a $20 pair. I just keep an open mind and a rotating mental list of things I may need. But what I have noticed: a) going out of business sales at the very end usually have nothing salvageable but can occasionally yield treasures (like the armani pants I got when Filene’s Basement was shutting down); b) shopping at major retailers in places that don’t have a need for some of what they sell helps (I’ve found great wool blazers, a cashmere poncho and suede shoes in Arizona on huge markdown; likewise, I love the upstate NY Marshall’s because it often has designer items, esp. formal shoes/clothes, no one wanted and that got marked down to 10% of their original cost); and c) don’t forget thrift stores (I have a Housing Works on my way home and often pop in there just to see what they have – usually it’s nothing but occasionally it’s a brand new tags-on Cacherel skirt or a pretty old painting, so you never know.)

          • hellskitchen :

            “shopping at major retailers in places that don’t have a need for some of what they sell” This is genius. I am inspired to attempt it on my next trip away from home

          • I’ve had incredible luck in this category, especially in retiree-strong areas of FL – got some Versace jeans for $30.

    • A month ago, I tried on some cobalt cigarette pants at AT and loved them, but I didn’t love them $80. Last week, they had been marked down to $39, it was the 30% off day, AND I had my birthday reward $15 off coupon with me, so my pants were …. $13.88!

    • hellskitchen :

      A Magaschoni tweed jacket for 90% off retail… about $50
      Stuart Weitzman fabric-covered heels for $25
      Gap suiting dress for $8
      BR silk, fully-lined dress for $14
      All of this was new – haven’t yet mastered how to shop at thrift stores so I am sure I am missing out on great deals

    • Ferragamo riding boots for $125 and a random dress $4 Goodwill that I was street-style photographed in!

    • CPA to be :

      A pair of worn once ferragamo loafers for $3.99 at goodwill.
      Cole Haan black slingbacks for $30 at marshall’s
      Routinely get suiting pieces at BR for under $20.

    • academicsocialite :

      Four-inch gucci ivory peep-toe pumps at DSW for $30 and teal satin kate spade pumps for $60 from Daffys (RIP). I have a weakness for shoes that does not at all correlate to my non-profit salary. :(

  18. superanon :

    I posted awhile ago about getting back out there, dating-wise, and many of you responded with really helpful comments — so thanks! The good news is that I’ve met several guys who all seem great, so I have a few dates set up next week. However… I get so stressed out before and after the dates. During I’m always fine. But before and after, I tend to think way too far ahead (what happens if I get sick of him or there’s a dealbreaker I need to find out about NOW or he breaks my heart six months down the road or… etc.). How do I avoid this? Anyone else a chronic overthinker when it comes to dating?

    • Hi. Me. I do that.
      How do you STOP?!?! It’s hard :(

      • superanon :

        I don’t know! I can’t just enjoy the moment because all I do is think about potentially terrible outcomes in the future. I also get stressed about physical stuff (whether it happens or not!).

        And then I make it ten times worse because I think, “Everyone else does this, and has done this, and you are the only one with these ridiculous worries,” even though I know that’s not the case.

        I should add that I’m in my early 30s, so I feel like dating is even harder — less time to waste, and more significant impact if things go wrong with someone who seems great.

        • karenpadi :

          Second that dating in my early 30s is way more difficult than in my twenties. I have given up for now–I was too bitter dealing with peter-pans and momma’s-boys. I’m taking an extended break (3 months) and revisiting online dating Nov. 1.

          I think also, that, in my twenties, I had much less baggage and it was easier to go on a date thinking “something could come out of this”. By now, I feel like I’ve just been let down so many times and in so many ways that dating is just that much harder. In a slate article, the blogger says (in reference to Michelle Obama’s first date with Barack): “We (single childless women), too, have gone on dates with funny, smart men who are strivers, who drive beat-up cars where you can see the road through the hole in the floor. It’s just that we got dumped on that date. We will always hate that movie.”


        • I’m creeping up on my thirties, and I feel you. I actually just had a rough summer dating wise…met a great guy (well, I thought I had) and the dates when FANTASTIC. And of course it was all I could think about non stop! Then things went sort of bad, and it became a very casual dating sitch. Ended yesterday. The tought of going back out there is so daunting. Dating is fun during the actual date, but it’s SO stressful the rest of the time!!!

          Don’t make yourself worse for feeling what you feel. Plenty of us overanalyze and agonize about text messages, etc. If nothing else, I’m there with you, so you’re not alone :)

    • karenpadi :

      I think it’s normal to stress about dates. I tend to have sky-high expectation (“This could be THE ONE!”–in Ellen-caps) and over analyze the ones that went bad.

      Before a date, I try to stick to a ritual. I wear one of 2 or 3 “first date” outfits I have and put on my make-up. I remind myself that I am a very special person who deserves only the best. I double-check his profile so I remember his name and what he looks like.

      After a date, I write a thank-you text when I get home and try to decompress. I am really bad at letting bad dates go and not getting over-excited when a date goes well.

      I don’t think there’s a way to avoid getting heartbroken 6 months down the road. I like to think that, if there is a delayed disclosure of a dealbreaker, I would be strong enough to break it off at that time. Overall, I remind myself “it’s better to have love and lost than never to have loved at all.” Plus, a good break-up keeps my mother quiet about me not dating for a few weeks (blessed relief!).

    • TO lawyer :

      Maybe you can just go into first dates with a different mind-frame? When I was dating a lot, I stopped putting too much pressure on myself for first dates. So I wouldn’t get dressed especially for that date, I wouldn’t schedule it for prime-time (so usually weekdays after work, where I’d show up in my work outfit), and in my mind, the first date was just to meet someone and see from there. And this is really dorky so I probably shouldn’t admit it, but I started thinking of first dates as networking practice. So even if the date sucked, at the very least, I would be getting practice meeting new people and making conversation when you don’t know someone very well? I also tried to make sure first dates were at a place I felt comfortable at and could be cut short if it was a disaster.

      I also found that it got easier the more I dated. I realized how easy it was to meet people and at least go on one date, so I stopped putting so much pressure on a first date.

      Although I’m still in my mid-20s, so YMMV. I had this same mindframe on my first date with my SO (who I didn’t know at all when we went out) and it ended up being 7 hours because we had so much to talk about. (Although I did have some stinker first dates too – those are stories for another time though, as I seem to have drifted onto a tangent…)

    • OR, if you want to join our ‘Dating Support Group’ on Facebook, you can decompress with us! ;o) since it’s on FB it’s unfortunately not anonymous amongst ourselves, we’ve had to ‘out’ ourselves, but it’s a ‘private’ group, so no one else on Fb can see it. And it’s a pretty awesome group IMHO.

      I think you can ask to join by searching for “Dipping Toes Into The Dating Pool” but if you can’t get it, ask again here and I’ll post a link. We rant and decompress and support each other about a lot of these kinds of things.

      Also, I just saw this the other day when I was totally overthinking something and freaking out, and normally I hate platitudes, but for some reason this really calmed me down immediately: http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m9mixvhI7N1qckauuo1_400.jpg


    • OMG, me too!! I think this is a big part of the reason I mostly avoid dating. It helps me a little to think about any given date as an opportunity to gather information. Like it’s a research project. :). Good luck!!

    • Chronic over thinker here who has had the fairy tale ending. Somehow I managed to completely transform my perspective when I started dating my DH. I had always looked into the future. I was very afraid of playing the fool. I basically sabatoged most relationships before they really got started. I had come off a string of bad outcomes in dating and did a lot of soul searching before I met DH. The conclusion I came to was that I was more damaging to my self esteem than any of these guys were. I got hurt by them, but I got over it. I was strong enough to put myself out there, love, trust, and have my heart broken and then get back up and move on. On the other hand, the constant doubt, holding back, and second-guessing were staying with me all the time and slowly eating away at my self esteem and ability to connect with people.

      DH entered the scene at the right time. When we started dating, I just went with it. Any time I wanted to over think or hold back or second-guess, I asked myself two questions: does this feel right right now and if he left tomorrow could you pick yourself up and move on with good memories of everything that happened until he left?

      I think if you focus on and have faith in your own strength then it becomes easier to manage the over thinking. In my experience it is easier to write off some guy who turns out to be a jerk than it is to live with the constant cycle of holding back and second guessing.

      • Merabella :

        I was uncharacteristically super cool when I met my husband. To be honest I wasn’t looking for anything serious at the time, and was just in it to have fun. I think that took the pressure off and I wasn’t so focused on being perfect.

        I think working on things that make you feel good outside of dating helps with this. If you are happy with yourself then you aren’t as nervous because everything isn’t riding on this one date. YMMV.

  19. locomotive :

    Ladies – am I the only person who gets the following problem?? The back slit of many of my pencil skirts ends up ‘ripping’ further up, beyond where the slit starts. This has happened on skirts with a wide range of quality from Theory to Jcrew no.2 cotton to the Limited! Funnily enough, the only one it has not happened to is a doubleweave Target pencil skirt I bought one day because I spilled coffee on myself on the way to work because that skirt has horizontal stitching that stops the slit from being able to rip up further.

    What is going on!? Has anyone else had this problem? I buy skirts that are usually loose-ish fitting and not too tight, and I try to take reasonable steps. My guesses are it’s from stretching out the slit to get into my car or going up and down stairs, and somehow the stress is too much and rips the slit further. How do I stop this!

    • Can you put in some stitches to reinforce the slit–maybe you (or a tailor/seamstress) can add some horizontal stitching?

    • I have this problem and manage by reinforcing the stitching by hand – just the bottom half-inch or so.

    • I’ve done this myself but if you don’t sew, you can take it to a dry cleaner or tailor. Should be pretty cheap.

      On the reverse side, a piece of color-matching fabric, should be tacked on. It can match existing topstitching or be a slash or even a triangle. Only the stitching will show on the right side.

    • I have this problem, probably due to my non-ladylike striding when I walk in pencil skirts.

      • I did this to a fairly pricey skirt last week (literally brand new, 2 hours in). I took it back to Nordstrom when I went to pick up some other alterations I had done. Not only did their seamstress fix it beautifully, she did it immediately so I didn’t have to make another trip back. Awesome. She did pass along the caveat that I need to “sit like a lady” to prevent such issues in the future. That made me laugh.

        I think I probably did it getting into my truck, which sits kind of high. I have started hopping onto the seat sideways, like sidesaddle on a horse, then swiveling around to face forward. I’m sure I look ridiculous but its worked so far!

    • I’ve done this several times. I think it just happens because I’m always running late and end up taking huge steps. My dry cleaner fixes the slits for $5.

  20. Anon in PNW :

    Update for the lovely ladies who inquired about an update… for new readers, my offer on a home in Seattle was verbally accepted, but retracted the next day. The sellers elected to take a lower bid because they wanted to sell to a young family instead of a single woman/unmarried couple.

    I sent a detailed account of what happened to the president of the selling agency. I just got a message back from them saying that the selling agent essentially denies every part of my account and they wish me luck in the homebuying process. The selling agent states that she never accepted my bid. Her sellers simply elected to sell to the lower-bidding party for “sentimental reasons” (which I maintain is a euphemism for discrimination based on marital status). It outrages me that the agency is taking her wholesale re-write of my version of events at face value. They did not contact my own agent to verify. Instead they insinuate that my agent lied to me in telling me there was verbal acceptance. My agent (who is far more experienced than the selling agent) would have everything to lose by making such a grave mistake. The selling agent now has everything to gain by lying.

    At this point I don’t think I can do much. I’ve called the Seattle Fair Housing Commission and cold-called discrimination attorneys, but nobody gets back to me. I will wait until the house closes, and then I will send the selling record along with my higher bid and a formal complaint to the Washington State Department of Licensing. In the meantime, I am honestly thinking of giving up my dream job and moving back home.

    Now I’m waiting to see the selling record of other houses I’ve bid on…who knows if I lost those too because I wasn’t married. I feel like the real estate buying equivalent of Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction.

    • That sucks, but take a deep breath, treat yourself to something fabulous this weekend, and focus on moving forward – there are other houses and other opportunities out there. Don’t let this bad experience sour you on your dream job!

    • How did they originally ‘accept’ your bid? Orally or on paper? Even an e-mail should be incontrovertible proof of your account. Otherwise it would be their word against yours unfortunately.

    • Awful, shameful. I hope you’re able to get someone to help you with this. People make me so angry sometimes.

    • I am still shocked that this even happened.

      I’ve noticed that your own agent doesn’t appear much in this account. What has your agent said about all this and are they providing support for you? It seems to me that they should be fighting for you here, especially if they are more experienced than the selling agent.

    • e_pontellier :

      This just makes me so angry. Don’t give up on your dream job – I try to tell myself that everything happens for a reason (sorry for the lame cliche).

      • Agreed, don’t give up on your dream job!

        I realize that what I am about to suggest is time-consuming and will probably fuel your anger but the last thing that the selling agency wants is for this to become an Issue.. their first line of defense is denial.. so if you become a thorn in their side, they might be more willing to do something (though I’m not sure what that is exactly.. if the new buyers close, you may have some recourse though not necessarily the house itself..) so in addition to replying to them (along with all the proof you have of what actually happened) to the seller, the agent, the head of the selling agency, whoever oversees that agency, the fair housing authorities, the Better Business Bureau, press, the city officials etc. I’d mention that you are considering a legal challenge as well.

        • though if you do decide to hire a lawyer, then you might not want to rock the boat as I’ve suggested.

    • Anon in PNW :

      Thank you so much ladies. I don’t have many people in my life right now who can appreciate how painful this situation is for a single woman in her 30s. Anyway, regarding your comments:

      1 – The acceptance was oral, via phone, to my agent, who notified me via email immediately of what the selling agent said.

      2 – My agent is sticking by her story, which I trust because it hasn’t wavered at all since the blow-by-blow of Sunday night. As for “fighting for me,” this goes to the heart of my reluctance to engage an agent at all – as expected, she doesn’t want to be persona non grata in this city. Hard for me to blame her. I think she is hoping that another listing comes along to divert my attention from this (as, frankly, am I – it goes against every fiber in my being to be a troublemaker).

      3 – Great suggestion regarding cc’ing all those parties above. My concern would be retaliation from the agency. I know that truth is a defense to libel, but wonder how that works with these “he said she said” circumstances. On this point, I do feel that the circumstances (sellers took lower offer – why?) weigh in my favor. Pressing the issue would put my agent in the very uncomfortable position of publicly calling out the other agent/agency.

      • I’m so sorry to hear about your troubles. I can’t offer any advice on the legality of the situation, but I can suggest that you insist that your agent get anything from the sellers agent in writing, as quickly as possible, even if it means driving to the sellers agent’s office or emailing them with a “as we discussed the sellers have agreed to accept PNWs offer, please respond to this email ASAP to confirm”. We almost lost out on our current house due to “playing telephone” with offer acceptances and it wasn’t until we went to close that we found out that somewhere along the chain of communication a date was given wrong and we missed a deadline the bank had set and almost had to start short-sale renegotiating all over again. Get everything you can in writing, as quickly as you can, and make sure you get a copy, don’t let it go straight from the agent to the bank and assume its jives with what you were verbally told. If your agent isn’t willing to do that for you, that’s grounds to break any contract you have signed with them.
        Good luck and I hope the house of your dreams works out soon!

      • Divaliscious11 :

        I’d get a new agent. I don’t play well with those who discriminate or those who sit by and passively watch it occur…..

    • Anon for borderline legal advice :

      Even if you can’t find an attorney, you can try the case yourself. I know this is easier said then done but there is a ton of info out there to help pro-se litigants. For starters, I would consider filing for a restraining order to prevent the sale of the home until you have had time to assert your claim. Google is your friend. There are a ton of public documents out there to copy. Your court may also have form pleadings on their website.

      Also, it is huge that their agent admitted that their client accepted a lower offer. If this turns into a case, they will have to divulge what those “sentimental reasons” are. No matter what euphemisms they use they will likely be synonymous for discrimination.

      • Anon for borderline legal advice :

        PS: for googling suggestions, try injunction instead of restraining order.

    • Just a thought, but maybe take a page out of their book when you bid on your next place & have your realtor write a letter about your “hopes and dreams” for the home. I recall your original story being pretty compelling. I don’t know about the legality of what happened to you, but I’ve heard stories like this a lot & for a while in SF “telling the compelling story” about why you wanted the house was the deal maker. Maybe you just need to play the game too?

      • Agreed. For the most popular and high demand neighborhoods in my city, the conpelling story or sentimental value factor can be huge (for better or for worse…). Write a nice letter, say you don’t want to tear down the house and call it a day.

  21. any recommendations for a puerto rico all-inclusive resort? this is for a 5 to 7 night family trip with a varity of ages and interests, so i figured an all-inclusive would be the easiest. also, any tips for surviving a vacation like this are welcome :)

    • Haven’t done a resort, but my family got a pretty cheap deal on a cruise that left out of Puerto Rico – all inclusive and lots of varied activities at each port, so we ate dinner together at night but did our own things during the day.

      • Oh, I would not do a cruise if there was any hint of “survival” needed. A cruise is a trap, and if there’s any chance of my needing to get away I want it..

  22. Ladies of the hive –

    I recently realized that I say “like” a lot. Like, a whole lot, when I’m trying to be professional, mostly as an extraneous stutter-word. I’m trying to break myself, but it’s such an unconscious tic I’m having a hard time. Any suggestions to help me get the LIKE out?

    • AnonInfinity :

      Maybe have a friend stop you mid-sentence each time you say it. Also, you can try tapping your toe or your fingers together or some other little gesture whenever you feel like you need to fill the silence.

    • associate :

      enlist the help of a friend, and if they hear you say “like”, they say “beep.” Preferably in an obnoxious tone. It’s super annoying to keep getting interrupted with a beep.

    • Jacqueline :

      Try picturing yourself saying your next sentence clearly and without any “likes.” Take a deep breath before you talk, and then say it. A lot of the “likes” sneak in there because we’re trying to speak really quickly and just fill the spaces that naturally come up when we talk. If you think about each thing you say (I imagine it being written out in my head, if that makes sense), you’ll probably be able to avoid it and train yourself to stop saying it as often. Good luck!

    • I used to say “like” a lot, too. My dad really got on to me about it, and he would insert “like” into his sentences to show me how ridiculous I sounded. And he would say, “was he like a tennis player, or was he actually a tennis player?”

      His comments helped me slow down my speech in front of him, which led to slowing down my speech in general.

      • Ha, this is what I had my husband do, too, and it really worked.

        “did you like go to the grocery store or did you actually go there?” lol

    • Let me just commend you on recognizing and trying to break the habit. I interviewed a handful of clerkship candidates yesterday, and three of them noticeably peppered every sentence with “like.” Once I noticed, I became so distracted by it that I barely listened to what they were saying. These people had absolutely impeccable credentials— but what’s the point of all that hard work if, when it matters, you’re going to stand in your own way by not being able to have a professional conversation?

      What I did for stopping myself from saying “OK” during depositions was to grip my thumb with my other hand (this can be done subtly but it’s easier with a desk or table) and squeeze it hard at the end of a witness’s answer before asking my next question. I needed a physical outlet because it actually felt like a compulsion to “OK.”

    • Wow. Beeping at me and saying “Oh yeah, they LIKE went down to the store?” was something my father did when I was in high school. It did not help. ( and it definitely like, harmed our relationship) I would not suggest these routes even voluntarily.

      I still say “like” in situations with my girl friends, but I found that changing my speech patterns in work/professional situations helped. I tended to stumble over my words, which is when the “like”s would appear. I started speaking slower (something that I noticed my female bosses did) and composing the first sentence of what I was going to say in my head before I spoke.
      If you say “like” because you’re nervous or excited, deep breath! I find touching my thumb to middle finger calming.

      • I also found slowing down very helpful—it helps root out not only “like”, but also “um”, “er”, and many other hedge/hesitation noises.

        I like to think of it as talking methodically. ;)

  23. Can we have a moment of silence for Endless? Its been my go-to for so many “bad day at work” shopping experiences, I can’t imagine life without it.

    • what???

    • Yes. The regular Amazon format (which we’ll have to use going forward) is terrible–I actually emailed them to complain.

      • Brooklyn, Esq. :

        Yeah! I’m hoping this is more of a re-branding thing and less getting rid of the great functionality Endless currently has on their site.

    • I didn’t even know what you were talking about! (had to click over there) I hope the format doesn’t change too much – I don’t think of Amazon as a good browsing site, more of a good site for buying what you already have in mind.

    • I KNOW, i was just scrolling down to say NNNNNOOOOOooooooOOOoooOOOOOOOOOOO
      I think i am going to cry :o(


  24. Any advice for how to deal with a co-worker when you know what you have to do to make the relationship work, but doing it is completely antithetical to your way of being? I work with someone (not my boss, but someone I need to keep happy) who is absolutely awful to work with. Incompetent, arrogant, accusatory, desperately insecure, has a persecution complex, doesn’t read email/notes/listen to vm and then becomes angry at people for not providing enough information about meetings, policies, etc. (that were all covered in various media formats to ensure that the message got through somehow to the person who doesn’t read email/listen to vm/etc). I have been advised (and I agree) that the best way to make this person happy is lots of flattery, exclaiming over how great the person’s ideas are, how smart the person is, laughing at the person’s jokes. I am exceptionally bad at this. Another co-worker is terrific (she’s generally much better with people than I am) and I know what I have to do, but it’s like my whole being rebels and I say or do things I know are very not helpful (like give a blank stare in response to a project suggestion that makes zero sense and reveals an abyssal lack of understanding of the basic concepts of the project). Anyone have to do something that feels un-doable? Any advice for just. doing. it.? I realize my very being is not at stake, that everyone else realizes that this person is ridiculous, but I am having a very hard time with this.

    • AnonInfinity :

      I try to do 2 things. First, treat the person in a completely professional manner. You don’t have to be friends, you just have to get along well enough to work together. Second, find something you like about the person. There is no one with 100% horrible characteristics. Even if it’s just a really small thing, try to associate that with the person rather than all the awful things.

    • Psh, do we work for the same company? I have a similar situation, a non-boss that must be placated.

      He treats everyone like [email protected], not just me, so I have company in my misery. And I take solace in knowing his time at the company is short lived (he came on board with a recent merger). No advice, but I understand :)

    • lawsuited :

      I work with someone like this, and whenever I deal with her, I just hear my mother’s voice saying “you catch more bees with honey than with vinegar”, smile sweetly, and get the job done.

    • ChocCityB&R :

      Quick question, do you have to make this person happy (i.e. they are a client) or do you just have to not piss them off? Because if it’s the latter, there is no way in hell I’d laugh at their jokes or stroke their ego. Normal professional behavior should be enough to not piss them off, based on what you’ve described above.

    • I worked for a senior attending who was a megalomaniac. He actually was a good surgeon, and really did amazing things for patients, but because of his ego rather than his desire to serve. My solution was to say the most outrageous, full of sh*t statements to him to stroke his ego, and see if he ever caught on “yes Dr, that was the most amazing groin puncture I’ve ever seen.” “Dr X, you are the only one who can save this woman’s life.” I was always shocked that he never caught on (in fact, he adored me and protected me at a time when it was very beneficial to me.) It also amused me endlessly to play this game. Of course, if he’d caught on that I wasn’t being genuine, it would have been a disaster.

    • Tell yourself this is a rehearsal for dealing with a difficult client ?

  25. Woods-comma-Elle :

    You know it’s bad when you’re in the office at 9pm on a Friday night and you spent over an hour doing something, saved and discovered subsequently the changes hadn’t saved.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      My deepest sympathies. That happened to me too once last year. I closed my door, had a temper tantrum, then called Tech Support to see if there was any possibility of recovery. Don’t touch anything. Call Tech Support. Sometimes they can work miracles.

      • e_pontellier :

        This. Tech Support can do amazing things.

      • Woods-comma-Elle :

        Thanks, I wish that were true with our Tech, but generally speaking they just make it all worse…

        • Woods-comma-Elle :

          To note, this isn’t a general issue with Tech support, just my firm, where we have a ridiculous system which results in everyone hating IT even though generally speaking they are all nice people just trying to do their jobs!

        • SF Bay Associate :

          How much worse could it get than losing a document you already think is lost?

          • Woods-comma-Elle :

            Well in this instance, you are right.

            Sadly, I already spent an hour on the phone to them earlier today when the system literally swallowed one of my documents and nobody could find it for about 45 minutes… so I guess once bitten twice shy (although they did find it in the end). Plus I’ve been chasing now for 7 hours for someone to tell me whether they can release/locate an urgent e-mail which caught in our outgoing spam, which won’t let me send any e-mails to this particular recipient…

            But I have now in fact redone the document, so it is all a moo point. I just wanted to let off steam I guess!

          • Moo point. Love it.

            It’s like a cow’s opinion. It doesn’t matter. … It’s moo.

    • I’m so sorry. This happened to me recently and it almost pushed me over the edge!

    • That’s so frustrating, I’m sorry. I have had it happened to me on more than one occasion. I now have everything set up to auto save every 5 min. I also save documents to an external drive (?) at the end of each day so that if anything gets screwed up it’s there and/or if I end up not wanting to keep the changes, I can at least go back to the last official version.

    • ChocCityB&R :

      I am so so sorry you are dealing with this! This is why I hand write stuff. (Well that and I can’t stare at a screen for too long or my eyes start to hurt). I had lost enough electronic drafts that I realized I wanted to have something when I lose the electronic doc so that I don’t have to start from scratch. Funny story though, this morning I couldn’t find the pages in my legal pad where I had the facts section of my memo written, and nearly died thinking I accidentally threw away the pages before I realized I had written it on another legal pad on that was in my work bag.

  26. A big thank you to AN, Mighty Mouse, EB0220, Bloom and others who responded to my comment about sending my 1.5 year old to daycare and dealing with his crying (big tears rolling down his cheeks! utterly abandoned expression! red face!) when I leave.
    Today ends the first week. It hasn’t been good, and it isn’t better when DH does the drop off instead of me. I’m going to try the trick someone suggested of bringing a shiny new car along, or pretending to throw him to the teacher, though he’s usually so upset by that time that he’s not listening to me at all. I have to spend a few minutes doing the sign-in sheet and putting his food in the fridge, and by that time he is utterly upset.
    Anyway, here’s to hoping it gets better in another week or so and he isn’t the kid who is still crying 6 months down the line. What’s the point when I should re-evaluate if continuing a nanny at home is less traumatic for him?

    • I worked in a day care during college and can honestly say that 30 seconds after their parent left, the children were fine. The teachers should be comforting during the drop-of, of course, but it really is “out of sight, out of mind” for the children. As a parent, I know it is heartbreaking though. Hang in there, it will get better for both of you.

      • This. I worked at a summer camp in high school and most of the little ones would calm down less than a minute after their parents left. It’s a learning process, but the children who adjusted best were the ones whose parents didn’t do the whole “oh, he’s crying, I should go back. Okay now I’m leaving… but wait, I should check in one more time”. The out of sight, out of mind trick really does work.

        I know it’s hard to leave a crying child, but they really do calm down :)

    • SpaceMountain :

      When my daughter was 2, I enrolled her in a preschool that was part of the local high school’s child development class. There was a place to go with a 2-way mirror, so I could drop her off screaming and crying, then retreat behind the mirror to watch. What a relief that she’d stop crying and start playing once I was out of sight. She was quite a crier, though, and would cry for any new activity (dance class, new preschool, whatever) for years. Have the teachers at your son’s daycare reported to you on how long it takes for him to settle down and start playing?

    • Seventh Sister :

      Transitions are really hard for that age. My kids both did the wailing thing, then were fine about 45 seconds later (I could peek through the window). Talk to the teacher. Give it a few weeks. It will be OK.

    • Can you do anything to speed up the drop-off process? Our daycare suggested taking a stack of the dropoff sheets home so we could fill out as much as possible in advance saving a few minutes at dropoff. We are also allowed to put more than one days worth of food in the fridge at a time, provided its labeled with a name and day. Are there older kids in the class with him at dropoff? All the kids in my sons school are together when its very early in the morning, and the 3-4 year olds are really good at playing ball or otherwise distracting my son. Ask the teacher what his favorite toy/activity is at school and get him started on that right away. Good luck, the tears will end eventually!

  27. Attn: Kate Middleton fans –

    I know there has been a lot of discussion of how Kate gets her perfect hair. In the wake of the sh!tstorm over the nude pics published in French magazine Closer, I found another article in Closer describing how she gets her hairstyle after a 15 y/o Singaporean fan of hers asked her how she gets her hair to stay so smooth in the heat and humidity. Evidently her hair is naturally curly (!!!), she styles it using something called the Chelsea blowdry (google it – Hello Magazine has a good tutorial with product suggestions), and – here’s the kicker – she only uses one hairstylist, who is also the longtime stylist for William and Harry, and the stylist travels with her and retouches her hair between appearances. Alas.

    http://www.closermag.fr/content/71983/le-secret-anti-frisottis-de-kate-middleton-nest-pas-la-portee-de-toutes (in French)

    • SF Bay Associate :

      I feel so, so badly for her. On a major international tour, she’s knocking it out of the park in grace, diplomacy, amazing hair (today’s bun! I die.), and gorgeous fashion, and to be blindsided by this… it’s just so awful. Especially since tomorrow and the next day and the next she has to be graceful, diplomatic, and beautiful for more official functions.

    • lawsuited :

      But really, they’re photos taken with an extreme-zoom lens of her sun-tanning topless on a remote family property and don’t reflect poorly on her at all, regardless of how shocking the headlines may be.

    • Love Kate :

      My immediate thoughts when I saw the photos (yes, I went online to see them) were:

      1. Wow, her body really is as good as I always suspected it was.

      2. She and William look so much in love, and it is so nice to see how affectionate they are.

      3. I appreciate that she behaves so appropriately in public and yet can be so affectionate and genuine with her husband in private.

      So it’s possible that these photos might enhance her already fabulous positive image?

      • SF Bay Associate :

        I don’t think they’ll hurt her positive public image either. It’s obviously not her fault and she wasn’t doing anything wrong. I’m sure the public will rally to support her. But they are nevertheless an absolutely horrific invasion of privacy. Nude pictures of her are all over the internet and published in newspapers all over France. Millions of people now know what she looks like practically naked, including people she may meet when performing her official duties. I can’t imagine how vulnerable and angry she and William and their whole families must feel. First their honeymoon, now this. It just makes me so sad.

      • Yeah, to be honest, though it’s totally an invasion of privacy and so disturbing, they don’t reflect badly on either of them. Not like, say, topless Fergie having her toes sucked by that American way back when. It’s unfair but when you’re in the public eye to such a high degree, this sort of comes with the territory. I don’t mean to say it’s right, but I certainly doesn’t reflect poorly on either of them and, for whatever it’s worth, they both looked great.

      • I agree that it is beyond reprehensible to take and publish the photos. It’s an invasion of her dignity. But “privacy” is a tricky concept in this context. As all prior experiences of all royals to date should underscore, there is NO privacy for these people. There should be, but there is not. So do you accept the world for how it is, no matter how wrong and unfair, and keep your top on when you are outdoors, or do you pretend that the world is fair and decent and accept the (completely disgusting but also foreseeable) consequences of people being every bit as gross and inappropriate as you should have known all along?

        Anyone who actually clicks through to look at the photos is part of the problem, in my opinion, and part of the reason why these people have essentially surrendered their civil rights to obscene celebrity stalkers. You cannot be disgusted that this happened while also contributing page views to the offenders.

        • I’ve heard this as an excelent republican argument (i.e. get rid of the monarchy in the UK). It isn’t good for them. Just let them be normal rich people, and then there will be even less of an excuse that they are “public figures” and people want to know.

      • I honestly can’t see how these photos would really hurt her — she was on remote family property with her husband, not out at the bars in LA or something.

        Agree that the people who click on the pics (sorry in advance if this offends anyone here who looked at the photos) are a part of the problem in fueling the fire.

      • I would just hate to know that everyone I meet knows what I look like under my clothes, you know? You could be having a serious conversation, and the person you’re talking to is thinking about your nipples. It’s the same reason I wouldn’t, say, wear a bikini to a work pool party even though my coworkers are all my good friends.

    • Bluejay, I think you’ve mentioned that you like the Deva products before. There will be 2 Deva reps at Nordstrom Pentagon City tomorrow doing hair and and other things. When I was there on Sunday, I got a few samples of shampoo and conditioner and I can’t wait to try them out!

      • Thanks for the tip, but I’m actually the resident Deva hater. I think the consensus among all the other curlies is that they love Deva, though, so I’m sure your tip will be appreciated!

        • Sh!t! Sorry. If it’s any consolation, the sales rep is mega intense. She turned me off immediately when she interrupted my time with my sales girl I always go to and then told me that she liked me name because it reminded her of a dog she just met. Uh, what?

    • Don’t you dare call her Kate Middleton – someone jumped all over me earlier in the week for that.

      • Twitter recently told me that Kate Middleton is an anagram for Naked T!t Model. So, it seems appropriate to call her thusly when discussing those awful pictures, no? ;-)

  28. You guys, I have had over 5 hours of conference calls today and I need to vent. Maybe these will help someone.

    If you are sitting in a conference room with 10+ people and you have two or three on the phone, please try to limit the side conversations. I can’t hear the main speaker when you do this.

    If you are the speaker, please for the love of god tell us what page or slide you’re looking at when you’re talking about it.

    Don’t bring handouts to the meeting you haven’t emailed to the people phoning in.

    And if you’re one of the people dialing in, please put your phone on mute when you’re not talking! I can hear you breathing and typing more clearly than I can hear the speaker in the conference room.

    Any of you have additional tips?

    • OMG, mamabear. I have one on you. We once had a large conference call (many people on our end) set up with a vendor and one of my colleagues, who is known to be a noisy eater (grunts, farts, etc.) showed up with a vat of chili and a Coke. The rest of us in the room were almost under the table laughing.

      • In the presence of coworkers? Say it ain’t so!

      • the guy seriously farts in front of everyone? OMG you are making me appreciate my colleagues a little more, despite their lack of conference call manners.

        • Yep. Honestly, he’s the main reason why I started eating lunch in my office. I could not take it.

        • Embarassing, but true: my husband does this. Around the house occasionally, I’ll survive. But he admits that he does this frequently during meetings at work. I’m so glad I don’t know any of his coworkers. I’d be mortified!

    • Sydney Bristow :

      Oh god I hated it when people wouldn’t out their phones on mute! The other great one was hold music. Just hang up the dang phone and call back in when you can!

    • AnotherLadyLawyer :

      Move your blackberry/iphone AWAY from the speakerphone. I’ve been on calls where every single person sounds like an alien or has an echo because some moron obviously has a blackberry near the phone. It’s infuriating! (And who wants to be the jerk to say something about it?)

      • Is that what the alien echo is? Blackberry interference? I knew about the aliens, I just didn’t know what was causing them.

    • If there are people calling into the meeting, try not to pound on the table or tap it a lot. Some people do this when talking or unintentionally, but it makes it difficult for the people calling in to hear what people are saying.

    • omg don’t get me STARTED. 80% of my job is done on conference calls, with people who have been doing conference calls for longer than I have, and make more money than I do, and are supposedly smarter than I am, and yet they can’t figure out how to use their phones!! Or facilitators who can’t figure out how to ask people in the room to stop side talk! ugh, I could go on and on. I had a conference call this morning that I think hit every single thing on the list of What Not To Do On A Conference Call in only one hour.

      Horrible Conference Call Solidarity!

    • Don’t put everyone on Musical Hold every time you need to do something else. I used to have a weekly call when loud Sinatra kept coming on at random times and for random periods. No matter how emphatic we were that this person stop doing that, we never found out who it was, and it never stopped.

    • Additional tip : many people dial in from odd places (home, airports, huddled outside a restaurant etc) particularly if you’re dealing across multiple time zones. Sometimes it can’t be helped, sometimes it’s just what people think they can get away with. It helps to state upfront if the expectation is to make big decisions on a call and/ or if the hand-outs contain critical information and must be printed or reviewed when calling in from a remote location.

      And yes, mobile phones will cause static interference. Putting on mute will deal with it.

    • Briefly say your name every time you talk when you’re on the phone. Maybe your voice sounds distinctive to you, but actually it’s not. Nothing more annoying than being kept guessing about who said what..

  29. Has anyone had a coworker with a serious smoking habit? The guy I share a cube wall with goes outside for “fresh air” (to smoke) about 5 times a day and comes back smelling to high heaven! It gets progressively worse throughout the day. I have asthma and allergies, but the real problem is that it just smells terrible. It’s one thing to have to hold my breath when he comes to my cube 30 times a day (while I’m reading, typing, on the phone, etc., which is a problem of its own)… but it’s another thing to have the smoke smell creep into my area while we’re sitting in our respective cubes!!! I have an air freshener/neutralizer and a fan, but the smell is always present. Any suggestions?

    • Could you ask him to put an air purifier on his desk? It might help if the purifier is closer to the source.

    • I have no real advice but commiserate. The senior partner at my firm is a serious smoker and even smokes in his office (yes, our building is non-smoking). Last week I sat in his office for 4 hours reviewing a document with him while he chain-smoked. It was disgusting. I was so shocked I didn’t know what to do. I should have told him in advance that I’m allergic to smoke (white lie), but I didn’t and he therefore seems to think it’s OK. Yikes.

      • Blonde Lawyer :

        I’m not a smoker but I have this fantasy of working in an old law firm, smoking in my office while I sip whiskey and review a document. Probably nowhere near as fancy and fun in real life as it is in my head.

      • Anon in DC :

        I hear John Boehner does this. And that everyone fights about who has to sit by him in meetings.

      • I was completely shocked when I found out that the boss chain-smokes in his office and all meeting rooms (also in a non-smoking building). A co-worker who works closely with him was recently pregnant, and I felt awful for her!

      • It’s those white lies that make life difficult for people who are truly allergic to smoke. Smokers rightly assume that most people are faking it.

    • I once shared an office with a woman who smoked and the residual odor gave me a headache every day. I brought in an air purifier “since I ate lunch at my desk and didn’t want the smell to linger” which solved the problem.

    • You should just talk to HR, and say that having a frequent-smoking co-worker is causing health problems for you. They have to accommodate your “medical issue.”

      I have really bad asthma, and I can tell you that certain times of year, when I have hyperbronchial sensitivity, that even secondhand, after-the-fact smoke like you are describing could absolutely set me off. So, emphasizing that it is for health reasons, state that you need to be moved. Now. That should also cut down on the unannounced visits. Good luck!

  30. under-eye bags :

    Help! The bags under my eyes are out of control. They’re all I see, even when I wear concealer and foundation, and they never go away, even if I’ve slept nine hours. They’re horrible. I’m very fair, so they seem even more exaggerated. What can I do?

    • Bobbi Brown corrector/concealer combination works pretty well for me. It has stuff in it to improve the look over time, plus the pink/coral of the corrector camouflages the dark circles really well.

    • I’m really fair too, and like you no matter how much sleep or water I drink, the under eye circles are there. The best thing I have found is Benefit Booing, which is easy to apply with your fingers. I have heard from others that they also like Benefit Erase Paste, but I prefer the ease of application of the Booing.

    • Lise Watier Concealor Wheel will take care of it. Seriously.

    • No spark today. :

      Bags or dark circles? I have bags under my eyes and people always told me i looked tired. Chronically. Having dermal filler injected in my tear troughs was awesome and really made a difference.

    • Do you have allergies? I know that makes mine worse.
      I haven’t found a good solution but tea bag compresses, potato slices, de-puffing creams all help to an extent. Not that I have time for that every morning. I also have found that a bit of Lierac’s lifting mask (pink tube) dabbed on with my eye cream in the morning helps tighten the area. Not perfect (so would love to hear others’ solutions) but it helps. I also like Origins’ EyeZing eye cream in the morning to depuff and lighten dark circles.

      • Oh, and I heard cutting out salt does wonders but I can’t bring myself to do it. If you’re less attached to it, give that a try.

  31. hellskitchen :

    Thank you!!
    … to whoever recommended the Vampire Academy series. (This was a while back on a book suggestion thread). VA and the spin-off Bloodlines series provided me with hours of distraction that I sorely needed. I didn’t like Twilight and was worried VA would be similar but it’s not.

    • Ekaterin Nile :

      Also enjoyed the Vampire Academy series, which was recommended to me by my SIL. WAY better than Twilight (not that “better than Twilight” is saying much).

  32. Sharing a random, minimally time-wasting piece of personal style advice. (2 3-minute videos.) “Contrast level” is a thing, I now believe it! I always thought that a lot of my outfits looked wrong, somehow, but couldn’t figure it out. This also explains why so many of my shirts seem to require bright lipstick (I am “high-contrast”). I actually sent these to Mr. Monday, who is low-contrast, and we’ve been discussing them often as we re-evaluate some of our choices.


    • My contrast level is high, but my coloring is monochromatic (sad panda).

      • No sad panda! I think she’d suggest that you wear, say, a navy blazer with a light blue blouse. Or a brown cardigan with a pink shirt underneath. High contrast between colors that are on the same side (or adjacent) on the wheel.

        • No, you’re right. I was sad at hearing monochromatic (my ENTJ personality coming through!). I look great in navy and light blue, FTW!

    • I knew it! I have high value, low contrast colouring and I have always chosen to mix very dark pieces and very light pieces and I don’t like wearing more than 1 neutral and 1 colour (although I’ll wear multiple shades of 1 colour) at a time. I’m happy to know I’m not crazy or a boring dresser – I’ve just intuited what looks best with my colouring! VALIDATION!

    • Thanks for sharing this link and I’m glad that it’s helped you find out why the colours you choose work for you.

  33. Making partner :

    So, despite the fact that I haven’t gotten home before 9:30 pm a single night this week, am on track to bill 2400 hours this year, and have some serious work/life imbalance, I’ve recently realized that I…really kind of love being a biglaw transactional lawyer. I’m a newly minted fifth-year, in a firm with a 7/8-year track, and so I am at the point at which I think I need to approach my career differently if I want to make partner. And, although this is the first time I’m admitting it out loud…I do. I do want to make partner. I think I’m the only person I know who does, but I do.

    I know we don’t have a ton of ‘rettes who are partners, but I think there are a few. And so, for those of you who did stick it out, what do you wish you’d known as an associate? When you’re considering associates for partnership, what are you looking for? What does your dream partnership candidate look like?

    • Not a lawyer but was a MD in banking for a number of years and love the work, unfashionable as it currently is. The advice I’d have for your counterpart at this level would be to ensure she’s re-balancing time and effort in favour of client relationships vs. the mechanical part of deal execution.

      Some of this is obvious stuff – regular lunch with counterparts from key clients, catching up with your out-of-town network if you travel, sending congratulations on achievements even if your firm didn’t work on them etc. But underpinning it should be an effort on your part to figure out your own style for personalising client interaction – the more effectively you do this, the better you’ll be as a senior, at your current firm or elsewhere, and the earlier you start, the more naturally it’ll come to you.

      For example, I myself come from a fairly traditional culture where relationships and paying due regard to older folks are a big deal, and this is a big part of who I am personally and professionally. I remember birthdays, anniversaries, etc of friends, family and clients, I take an interest in their pet charities, I’m often consulted when they travel to some place I’m familiar with or when their kids go away to school, and so on. None of this takes a lot of time daily (and these days it’s mostly an assistant who does the leg-work) but it does take a certain commitment to prioritise in the face of ‘urgent’ deal-specific deadlines.

      Hope this helps !

    • Anon for this one. :

      I’d look for a genuine desire and eagerness to take on the challenges of partnership – networking, bringing in business, understanding that you now have to act for the good of the firm even if it makes take a personal (financial or otherwise) hit yourself, unselfishly training the people working for you. Apart from that, the potential to do all of the above well, perhaps not immediately but eventually. Technical competence is a given.

      Maybe you can elaborate about what you feel you should be doing differently? You specifically mention work/life balance issues. The best partners to work for and with, in my experience, have decent work/life balance. They work hard and are subject to a great deal of pressure, but somehow they manage to deal with things with equanimity and they do have interests outside of work. I’ve tried to emulate that, and I find that it helps a great deal in making partnership fulfilling and sustainable.

    • Divaliscious11 :

      Start working on you client development now.

    • In-House Europe :

      This is super late but in case you are still reading – I am the one that hires outside counsel and I still remember the two associates who worked on a big case for us. One went out of his way to invite us out for drinks after, to follow up on non-case-related things (like forwarding me the contract information of another in-house counsel in a field I mentioned I was interested in), etc. Never in a smarmy way, just someone who really was interested in other people. The other associate – unfortunately the woman – did her job and nothing else. I really wanted to forward new work to the female associate just out of principle, but guess who actually got the work? (And made partner shortly thereafter). Good associate = good legal skills. Good partner = good people skills.

  34. lawsuited @ mamabear :

    In a TJ about updating work wardrobes for fall a while back, you suggested wearing a “column of colour”. I have been doing it ever since and am completely in love with it! I think it looks slightly more sophisticated than my usual neutral suit and bright shell combo, and getting dressed in the morning is really easy. Thank you!

    (Also, the staff at the firm I’m leaving got together to give me a $350(!) Talbots gift card as a good-bye present, so grey and navy silk shells, here I come!)

    • Nice! I also do this just about every day. I’m so glad it’s working for you, lawsuited. :)

  35. Almost There :

    My office is under a lot of stress and the environment is tense. I’m very good at staying calm in tense moments. Although I have gotten kudos from some people for this, the high drama coworkers get really upset by my demeanor. One person pulled me aside today to tell me one of these drama staff members had said “it’s not that she is calm, she just doesn’t care as much as the rest of us about this program” a few times. Totally untrue, I really care about my job. I don’t know how this topic would even come up in conversation. How do I prevent people from mistaking my composed attitude for apathy?

    • I am probably more expressive than most. But with non-expressive people it’s the little things like a quiet, well-placed f-bomb or s-bomb, jaw/fist clench, a sigh/deep breathe, or a long closing and re-opening of eyes. One person I work with has a signature gesture of rubbing one or both hands over his face (he’s lucky men aren’t expected to wear make-up).

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      I’ve been there. I’m former law enforcement so no matter what is going on, I just don’t show that I’m upset or stressed. I remember in the early days here, a former paramedic posted about the exact same thing. I remember relating to her background. I think certain people take pleasure in making other people miserable. Some bosses want to see you nervous and upset if you mess up and if they don’t see you cry/quiver they think you aren’t “afraid” of them enough. These are the “big man on campus” types with god complexes. I think you just keep doing what you are doing and let the haters hate unless one of them reviews or supervises you. If so, you may want to sit down and just discuss how you handle stress and emotions and that you feel it even if you don’t show it.

    • I’m also calm, and my high-drama coworkers often take calmness as a sign of not being busy enough. These are generally people who are never prepared until the very last minute, and can’t conceive that someone can do her job without running around like a chicken with her head cut off. Unfortunately I don’t have any advice on how to deal with these people, just commiseration.

      • I agree w/ Bluejay! I’m an admin at an asset management firm (making a career change from academia). I *always* see other assistants bugging out. I try to remember this:

        1.) If we won’t lose money, a client or someone’s job- then relax, mistakes happen
        2.) Make a to-do list in order of priority, and then turn phone on silent
        3.) Ignore the freak-er out-ers; they psyche everyone out

    • Seattleite :

      Next time, your reply is “Every ounce of energy spent wigging out is energy diverted away from solving the problem.” (attendant eye-roll optional)

      Although on second thought, I’d advise against the eye-roll. Professionally, I’m not much of a wigger, but personally have been doing a great deal lately. Just this minute I have realized that it has to do with the amount of control I feel I have over the outcome. So maybe that’s also why the staffers are wigging?

      So continue to project calmness and competence. The people who really count are noticing.

      • Seattleite!! So glad to see you on here! *biggentlehugs*

        • Seattleite :

          Thanks! Haven’t been responding to emails due to wigging-and-sobbing, but have read and appreciated Every Single email and letter. Hope to resurface as a reliably rational human being soon. (Wigged, but not wigging.)

  36. Best place for shift or work dresses? :

    I’m contemplating the 1.5 hr drive to the outlet mall. They have Ann Taylor, Loft, (reg) jcrew, BR factory, dkny, Jones ny, and a few others that would seem work appropriate. I just changed job type, formality level and would like to look professional but less expensively until I get the hang of it & dresses seemed easiest. It’s almost like I’m starting the 333 but buying a portion of clothes to do it.

    Any store, or other seperate, suggestions are appreciated.

    • What is your body type and size? Have you already come to terms with the fact that you may need to get stuff tailored, or are you going to be hesitant to buy something that doesn’t fit off the rack?

      • Best place for shift or work dresses? :

        I’m an hourglass turning into an oompa loompa as I hit my 30s. Size 10-14 or M/L depending on cut and fabric.

        Tailoring will probably be essential as items that fit in the chest gap at the armholes for s/s or the waist needs to be slightly taken in to fit the hips. Off the rack only (rarely) works for casual clothes or separates.

  37. I’m really bummed but it doesn’t look like I’ll be getting any clerkship interviews. Now have to figure out what to do next year, since the firm I summered at doesn’t make offers and even though I liked it there, they would never hire me without a clerkship under my belt.

    Also woke up this morning to see a non-friend having posted this terribly judgmental article on facebook: http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/09/14/staying-celibate-before-marriage-was-best-thing-ive-ever-done/
    This person is no longer my facebook friend.

    • The ARTICLE is judgemeneteal about others that do have sex before marrage, but dont get to worked up about them. It will be intereesteing to see if this couple stay’s together as long as they think.

      When I was in college there was a Senior guy, John, that alway’s said he would NEVER have sex with a woman before marrage, and that he would NEVER marry any woman who had sex before thier wedding night. So he meet’s a blond freshman Marjorie, who was right off a farm in IOWA (Or Idaho, I forget), and he start’s dateing her. When he gradueated, he MARRIED Marjorie (suposedly they were virgin’s).

      Less then 2 year’s later, they get divorced. So that marrage did NOT work out, and I am sorry about that. Fooey. It work’s sometimes and sometimes it does NOT. There is NO single rule that applies to every one when it comes to sex.

      I am NOT advoceating having sex or NOT haveing sex before marrage, b/c there is no one right answer. I do NOT have that alterneative anymore b/c of my own history with Alan, but I onley hope that the man I eventueally MARRY will care for me the way I will care for him, and this will be true IRREGARDELESS of what we have done before in the bedroom with other’s before.

      I do think it is importent NOT to just have sex willie nilley when you meet a guy, because it is more special then just going out for an ice cream cone. But it is NOT right to condem a man or a woman b/c they have had sex before. That is stupid, so to that extent, I agree that the article is dumb.

      • Ellen, I am always so pleasantly surprised when you TALK SENCIBLY.

        Other than that, I am really sorry for the author of that piece. I would never want to go through my life being so openly judgmental and hateful, and I don’t believe God would want me to, either. The way he wrote about his and his wife’s decision to remain celibate reflects poorly on him, not on the alleged “rabble of promiscuous charlatans.”

        • LadyEnginerd :

          +1 to “and I don’t believe God would want me to, either.” I can only imagine how this guy’s kids are going to be absolutely insufferable if they’re raised by someone so openly judgmental and so insecure about his own beliefs that he has venom for those who have questioned his abstinence over the years.

          Has anyone ever told him that there is no “right” way to “do” marriage, only a good fit between two people who have enough compassion to grow as a team over the years? Seems like he thinks marriage is a contest judged by God As Envisioned By A Dude With A Blog, and he’s already won.

    • But now you can get “rabble of promiscuous charlatans” t-shirts made for you and your friends! That’d make an awesome band name.

      I don’t have any issues with the (increasingly rarer) choice to abstain until marriage. I do have an issue with the attempts to teach that norm to children in public schools, since research indicates abstinence-only education correlates with increased pregnancy rates among teenagers. The best s*x ed is comprehensive re: prevention and protection, and emphasizes all the reasons to abstain (like how it’s statistically rare to complete college by 30 if you are a young woman with a child before 18.)

      Just be grateful that no dude you’ve had sex with/married is trumpeting to the world about your wedding night.

      • Tshirts would be amazing! From now on at trivia night, we will be team Rabble of Promiscuous Charlatans.

        I mean, my husband is the only person I’ve ever had sex with though we didn’t wait until our wedding night for it, and I think that was the right choice for me. It was just a shocker to hear my relatively innocuous history described as “harlotry.” I didn’t know people still used that word.

        The 11th commandment – Thou shalt not judge thy neighbor, unless he judged you first. Then it’s ok.

      • karenpadi :

        This. S#x ed is so important. As a lapsed Catholic who learned all about s#x from Dan Savage, I taught my BigLaw best friend about how she could get pregnant with her first serious boyfriend (now husband). I gave my wait-until-marriage-to-kiss-friend a copy of “what your mom never told you about s#x” because I was worried that Fox News would never impart honest, medical information to her (judge-y? maybe).

        It doesn’t sound like this DOOSH asked his wife whether she thought their wedding night was magical. I’d really like to hear from her.

        • I’m sure this guy’s wife is just ordering all the “Fifty Shades of Grey” books and wishing she were with Christian Grey. Double LOL.

    • Sorry about the clerkships. I know it really throws a wrench in your plans to not have everything sorted out by know (or in the near future), but you will find something. If you really want to clerk, you can apply for a year after you graduate–you won’t have to adhere to the hiring schedule, if you’re applying federal, so you can apply this year even to line something up.

      I think the most annoying part of that article for me was the “you judged me, now hahaha I judge you.” He just sounds really insecure.

    • That guy sounds like a DOOSH. Good luck to his wife and future children on dealing with his smug, judgmental attitude for the next 50 years. If you think two lives magically become one literally overnight, you have some significant challenges ahead of you.

    • e_pontellier :

      That article makes me want to Godzilla RAWR. continuously. until the author gets pooped on by a very large bird.

      As far as a clerkship, I’m really sorry. I didn’t get any interviews at OCI and it’s been really tough – especially hearing about other people, who are “so depressed” about their rejection letters, when they have not one but TWO offers for this summer. If you can get involved in your local Bar Association, that should help you network. I’ve been really impressed with programs offered by my local Bar Association and I hear they have clubs/committees, which are a great way to meet people (and unofficially work with them, so that they think of you as a potential employee).

    • My husband tried the whole “wait till the wedding night” thing the first go-round. That turned out quite terribly (hugely different sex drives, among other reasons they didn’t stay together). Personally, I’m very glad I had my share of, um, lady garden parties before I committed so that I know I picked the right person to party with (among his other great qualities). But each to his or her own!

      Sorry for the clerkships. I don’t have experience there (at least until next year) but my advice would be: network, volunteer, talk to career services if they are at all helpful, and talk to your professors.

    • Celibate means unmarried, not not having sex (the word for not having sex outside marriage is chaste). So we all stay celibate until marriage, and Foxnews writers are still idiots.

      • That’s one meaning, but it also means abstaining from sex. http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/celibacy?show=0&t=1347736749

        I believe the not-being-married use is mostly for Catholic clergy.

        • The meaning of abstaining from sex came about because so many people misused the word that it began to be understood that way in common usage. People could argue that this makes it correct, as they do with other words (hopefully, bemused, nonplussed, etc) that are so often misused that it’s rare that they’re used with their original meaning, but I’m not one of those people.

          • Hive Mind :

            We’re wondering…when and how did the word “nitpicky” come into existence?

          • Unsure how you think you’ve been appointed as the “Hive Mind” but a) you’re wrong b) comments like yours are the reason why people complain about the Weekend Thread

          • Thankfully, your opinion does not reflect the majority. Whereas, ours does.

    • Maddie Ross :

      Regarding the clerking, have you applied to state court judges? It may not be nearly as prestigious, but I had a great experience clerking for a state court judge. And they usually make decisions a little later than federal judges so you still have time.

      • This. I found out I was no-offered my 3L year too late to apply for federal clerkships, so I got one in state trial court instead. Great experience.

      • Yeah, I applied to the state that I am closest to (I have tight geographical constraints). The applications for them were due at the same time as the feds. I haven’t heard anything. Some had already hired before the federal deadline. It’s a shame, because although I go to lower ranked school (top 50) its in this region and I’m very well ranked, etc. I’m just disappointed, because I really wanted to clerk because I thought it would be valuable, and I know so many people who get positions but only want to clerk for the prestige.

        • Ah. I am sorry to hear that, then. There is a lot of good advice below — I have many friends who clerked after a year of practice. And it’s very true that smaller firms are more likely to hire in the spring, closer to when they would like you to start. I know it’s tough — hang in there.

    • Ekaterin Nile :

      Whatevs to the Facebook guy. The gloat-filled judging in the column he posted means nothing to me because I don’t recognize his right to judge anyone. And that type of judging is definitely not what Jesus would do. First stone much?

      Turning to the more important issue–clerkships. Were you focused on federal? If so, don’t give up hope. More and more judges in my district (upper Midwest) are hiring clerks who have a year or two of work experience or a state clerkship. Keep pursuing your other options and apply next year when you will not longer be hampered by the federal clerkship application timing guidelines for law students.

    • I’m sorry about the clerkships. It is a total bummer. BUT this is really an opportunity, if you can see it this way. Many, many judges are avoiding law student hiring altogether, because the Hiring Plan is such a nightmare. So you can exploit this. Find a job for one-two years, and then once you’ve been at the firm for a year, start quietly exploring clerkship opportunities. A clerkship can be an amazing way to take a break from law firm life, or a great way to move to another firm or another kind of a job altogether. And any firm worth its salt will hold your place for you during your clerkship year.

      Alternatively, I highly recommend state court experience. State supreme courts are a great place to clerk and aren’t on the federal plan. Many friends have clerked for the highest courts in Massachusetts, New Jersey, even Alaska, and had wonderful experiences.

      Hang in there and good luck!

      • Former MidLevel :

        This. There is nothing wrong with applying again in a year or two. In fact, an increasing number of judges (esp. at the District Court level) don’t hire straight from law school anymore. And state courts can also be great–as can federal magistrates, an all-too-often under-appreciated set of judges.

        In the meantime, a lot of non-BigLaw firms have moved to hiring in the winter/spring, not the fall, of 3L year. Not that waiting is fun, but at least you’re not completely behind for private sector jobs. Best of luck!

  38. Help! I have a suede purse…a couple of weeks ago, I was walking to my car and it was raining, so a few drops got on the purse. Unfortunately, I was wearing dark jeans, and some of the color from the jeans transferred to the purse. Any thoughts on how I can clean it?


    • Not. I won’t come off. But if you’re feeling strongly about it, you can take it to your dry cleaners and see whether they can attenuate it or something..

  39. So, my husband wants to go to the library. I have a $25 fine. Is it so wrong that I really don’t want him to know about it? We can afford it, he won’t yell, but this is the 2nd one in a couple of months and I’m kinda embarrassed. (We’re newlyweds, life has been crazy, I truly thought I’d renewed, and fwiw I don’t mind paying library fines…think of it as donating to a valuable community resource.)

    • Check and see if your library offers a pay online option. If not, see if you can pay over the phone with a credit card before your go. Although I regularly have fines and, like you, just see it as a donation.

  40. Wow. We think the weekend thread might have officially jumped the shark with this particular “dilemma.”

  41. I need advice.

    Background: I started working in the banking/finance dept of a corporate law firm this year. It’s my first job after graduating law school. The company is very well respected (the closest thing to magic circle/big law we have in the small European country where I live), so I feel lucky to have gotten this job fairly easily, especially since several of my friends struggled with finding work for months after graduation. The thing is, though… I’m starting to realize I kind of really hate it, and I think maybe I took the job for the wrong reasons (it was safe, it was expected of me, it paid well etc).

    So I guess my question is… what do I do now?

    I can ask to transfer to a different department, but we were told by the MP when we started that we should wait a certain amount of time to “settle in” before we request a transfer (which would put that sometime around christmas), and while I think I’d like the work in some of the other departments more, I think I’ve realized corporate law really isn’t what I ultimately want to be doing, and wouldn’t I be causing a lot of hassle if I am looking to move on in the not too distant future anyway?

    I think I’m starting to have some idea about thing’s I’d rather be doing, and while I know I can’t expect to be doing exactly what I want right out of school, I would like to start trying to move in that direction. But how long do I wait before I start looking? On the one hand, aren’t you supposed to wait a while before changing jobs not to seem flaky? But then on the other hand, don’t first year associated cost the firm more than they bring in, and so shouldn’t I try to find a new job sooner for their sake as well as mine? Also, while I try to focus and work hard I know I’m probably not doing my 100% best work when I do something I find mind numbing, so maybe staying longer will a) not be good for them because they’re not getting my absolute best work and b) mean I’ll leave a not-great impression and get not-great references from them in the future? Like I said this is a small country and people know each other so if I do leave I want to do it nicely and right without burning any bridges. (I know I’m rambling at this point)

    Anyway, do you all have any advice that can help me come up with some sort of plan of attack, or constructive way to think about this or find some resources (or even just stop the paralyzing anxiety thing I’ve got going on lately. I’m really not used to not handling stuff)

    • karenpadi :

      Ok. That’s a lot of words for a very common dilemma that we’ve covered here before (but not super recently) so try a google search. Here’s the plan I would try:

      1. What are the redeeming qualities of your position? Big paycheck? Partners and senior associates who aren’t bullies? Billing within 1800-2100/year allowing for some social life, working out, etc? If you have all 3, you’ve hit the corporate law jackpot–think carefully before moving.

      If the only reason you want to leave is mind-numbing work, sorry, all work is mind-numbing. Count your blessings. Heck, according to my Marine cousin, even being in the Iraq war zone is mind-numbing and, as a 30-yr-old, he now has PTSD and the lungs of a 52 yr-old. He’s psyched to have a job in a salt mine paying $30/hr.

      2. What would change if you did change departments? From corporate, I’m guessing any move would be into litigation. Do you really want to be a litigator? Work with litigators (sorry, litigators but you are a different breed)?

      3. This is US-specific but I would really wait until you have 2-3 years under your belt before leaving. Pay off loans (haha, you’re in Europe, no loans!), build up a savings cushion, and use your firm’s connections to network and explore your options. Maybe your firm will even help you transition once you are a known quantity.

      In the US, only in a few circumstances would I worry about the firm’s “investment” in me. After the Great Layoffs of 2008-2009, everyone knows the firm would drop someone in a hot second so there’s no need for loyalty. Of course, this might be different in Europe.

      No matter what, not doing good work will only hurt you by giving you a bad reputation. It won’t hurt your firm. So do your best work.

      • Thanks for the advice, it got me thinking :) And I’ll be looking for the other articles.

        1. I’m not sure I buy the “be happy with something that is all right but doesn’t make you happy, because it could be worse”. I want to like what I do, I don’t want to “work for the weekend” or check the time throughout the day every day to see how long it is until I can go home. Maybe it’s naive, but I think I should at least try for a job that I’ll actually like most of the time.

        I’m not saying I think I’d be happier at a different law firm, I was thinking of a more “radical” move like going into research – I always wanted to do a PhD and was encouraged to by my supervisor (but thought I’d get some practical experience first and the options are somewhat limited in the city I’m currently in, which I guess is sort of how I ended up where I am now).

        2. I was thinking from banking/finance to some of the other areas the firm covers (IP law, european competition law etc.) which I enjoy more than the banking/finance stuff I’m currently doing (I originally applied to do competition law, but was put in banking/finance because they needed people as they have 3 ppl out on maternity leave, which is typically 40-52 weeks here). I am not to keen on our litigation dept, the senior partner is cray-cray.

        3. Well, I wouldn’t be leaving until I had another job lined up and pretty much all the other jobs I have been thinking about would cover my expenses just fine. My current job certainly makes it easier to save for a down payment on a house/apt, but I already have a decent chunk of money saved so at this point I’d say I value a job I can enjoy most of the time over the extra money (which basically comes out to a difference of about $ 18,000/year between current salary and starting salary for the other jobs I’ve looked at).

        Anyway, thank you again for your advice, I’m definitely thinking about all this some more :)

      • Not all work is mind-numbing. I agree that those of us who have jobs we don’t find mind-numbing are lucky, and should be aware of that fact. And I wouldn’t tell “Help!” to quit her job with nothing else lined up because it’s boring (not that it sounds like she’s contemplating anything along those lines). But there’s no shame in thinking about how to find a job you will like: why else do we pursue secondary education at all?

        That said, it’s true all jobs have things you won’t like. But I don’t think not liking a corporate law job (which, I will say it, aren’t exactly known for having high job satisfaction) is in and of itself a redflag that you’re expecting every single aspect of your job to be fun.

    • I have learned to roll with the punche’s, which is AMERICAN saying for being flexieble.

      I have a situation in MY firm where I am the ONLEY woman under 35 workeing there so I get all of the cases that NO one else want’s to do and ALL of the NEW stuff which is NOT easy anyway (Anti-Trust, Corporete, etc) as well as a boat Load of Litiegation in Worker’s Compensation that the manageing partner has shuffeled off to me. FOOEY!

      I look to the good side. I am the onley person in my gradueating class that has a 20% clotheing allowance, where I get reimbueresed for clotheing that the manageing partner approves. Fortunateley, his taste in womens’ clotheing is pretty good, so I do NOT mind wearing the clotheing he approve’s for me. Yay!!!!!

      Also, since I am the youngest person at the firm (other then one secratery, Lynn), people alway’s come to me for advise on what the younger generation is thinkeing on things.

      Finally, whenever there is a firm outeing, I am alway’s picked early to be a team leader for event’s the manageing partner want’s to do. This year, I am orgeanizing a “round Manhattan” boat cruize, where we will all have dinner at a nice place, then take a boat ride around the Island of Manhattan (which is New York City).

      So I wish you alot of luck. The one thing I did NOT mention was that it could be easier if you were MARRIED, but I am not goeing there, b/c of my Alan situeation. Mabye in a couple of years! Yay!

      • This in its own way makes sense. You sound young. Find a guy, get married, and you can have the work life flexibility to figure out what makes sense for you especially if children are on the game plan for you. It’s time we get some benefit out of our relationships and given your age and outlook, family life should be a viable option. I don’t know what European country you’re in but I am sure there are eligible bachelors looking for an educated professional eager to start a family. Good luck to you and be sure to report back on your progress!

        • Are you affiliated with S&S Associates, perchance?

          Apologies to all real persons on this thread. I am not responsible for COMENTS like the above, but I do want to be clear about their pedigree. A husband/kids answer pertaining to nothing and coming out of nowhere is always a sure sign.

          Enthusiast. Archivist. Buffoon.

  42. Do dry cleaning bags work? I got hit by a major dry cleaning bill and am trying to ease the pain a bit. Do they extend the time between cleanings?

    • Belle et Rebelle :

      I find they work pretty well for freshening up clothes between dry cleanings. I’ve also had some luck treating minor stains with the solution they provide. Worth a try, I’d say.

    • Another suggestion: for just about everything that’s not a formal lined jacket or skirt, I am washing on the “handwash” cycle in my washer (high efficiency) and hanging to dry. Do NOT hang wool to dry in the sun, though. Check out the Laundress line of handwashing detergents and their instructions. This REALLY works. I’ve even done lined wool pants, and they have come out smelling great and looking great.

      I also use a Jiffy J-2000 clothes steamer. I steam after I hang to dry, and I also steam in between dry-cleanings. I thnk it freshens better than drycleaning and none of that goshawful drycleaner odor.

      • My biggest cost is dry cleaning my silk blouses, which need to be cleaned more often than my suiting. Have you had any luck washing blouses in the washer?

        • I wash them in the washer all the time and haven’t had any problems. I have a HE front loading machine, but I am not sure that makes any difference.

        • Me, too, the trick is to take them out, smooth them out and and either lay flat or hang to dry. Laundress makes a delicate detergent for silk and other delicates. I was very dubious about washing wool, silk, etc. until I was in a very highend shop in Highlands, NC (not usually my style but there for a wedding) and bought a cashmere cover up since it was unusually cold. They had the Laundress products and the sales people really insisted laundering is much better than drycleaning. Laundress website has a nice printout of how to launder all sorts of fabric.

  43. Any other Cal fans who currently want to cry?

  44. Just needed a place to express that my to-do list is totally overwhelming me (both work and personal). For the second night in a row, I’m awake 2-4 hours past when the rest of my family went to sleep, working on all manner and sort of projects. I realize that I can/should downgrade some of these things importance-wise, but it seems like so much needs to be done NOW NOW NOW that I can’t get on top of the pile. Gahhhhhhhhhhh.

  45. Anyone have any tips about what to do with small holes in a cashmere sweater? I spent wayyyy too much money on a pink cashmere cardigan from jcrew, and now it has about five tiny holes in it– a few under the arms and one on the back. I don’t know why this happened in the first place, but I can’t bear to just throw it out. Any ideas???

    • The ideal fix would be to find matching yarn and darn the holes. The easy one is clear nail polish to seal the edges and continue to wear the thing, holes and all.

    • It sounds like you may have clothes moths. You should be able to darn the holes with the little bit of yarn you get along with extra buttons when you buy the sweater if you kept it. But you should check your other sweaters, too. I hope it’s not too bad…

      If you do have moths, this website has pretty thorough information on how to handle it: http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05599.html

    • This has been a really common problem with J. Crew sweaters in recent years (check out the Aficionado blog, where the tendency for holes to appear in almost-new clothing is discussed in detail). They are making their sweaters thinner/lower quality. Don’t blame the moths if they seem to have a taste for J. Crew only. See if you can return it, even if it’s past the standard date. They know their clothes are having problems and might be willing to do an exchange.

  46. anon for this :

    It is probably late in the weekend for this, but for those in the legal field, when did you know it was time to jump ship and switch firms?

    • 1) when you have a better job offer! Seriously, though, I would not leave until I have another job.

      2) When you hate what you are doing. I left one firm when I realized I was going to be doing primarily insurance work, and hated it philosophically and in the day to day doings of work.

      3) When you realize you are not valued at your present firm–a harder issue. Previous firm, insurance defense, truly valued me and my opinions. Current firm, not so much, but I love the work I do (plaintiff). I probably should have seriously considered leaving 15 years ago when I realized one of the senior partners thinks he is the only one with half a brain and totally sexist in his view of women attorneys, although he thinks he is completely enlightened.

      Caveat–these observations are from small firms, not Biglaw.

  47. Advance Sheets :

    In my office we circulate bound copies of reported cases determined in my state’s Supreme Court in the last month or so, and I’m never sure of the best way to address these. What do others who circulate these in your office do? I’ve considered starting a word document of decisions related to my practice area to refer to, but I haven’t actually gotten that going yet. I’d love to hear others’ ideas and/or what you are doing. Thanks in advance!

    • We all just go online and read the advance sheets ourselves. If I see a case that is particularly helpful or even particularly bad for my practice area, I do a synopsis of it and add it to a single document in my personal directory so that I can search that document to find recent relevant cases.In the synopsis, I include all the info to allow me to find the case quickly on westlaw or the court’s website.

      Circulating bound copies never worked for us, as someone would hold them for months so that by the time the next person got them, they were old news.

  48. Shoe/clothing advice needed: I have a big meeting coming up on Thursday, I work in healthcare and the meeting is all within our hospital, so no outside clients, but some big movers and shakers within our organization. My problem is footwear. Normally, I’d wear heels. However, I stepped on a chunk of glass last week and while I can get around on my feet, heels are out right now. I was going to wear a sheath dress (indian summer temperatures are killer right now), so my choice is A) flat loafers, B) a pair of flat ankle boots or C) snake print kitten heel pumps (1.5″). None are ideal, loafers don’t look all that fab with a sheath dress and both the boots and the pumps are a wee bit on the trendy side. Any thoughts?

    • Agree none of your choices sound ideal. Some other options : ballet or some other dressy flats with your dress, trousers plus a sleek silk shirt or knit with your loafers, maybe even flip-flops or flat sandals plus a visible and self-explanatory bandage with your dress ?

      (nicely-groomed feet if you go with the last option !)

    • I vote for the kitten heels. Snake print is trendy but could look nice if it goes with your dress. Definite no on ankle boots with a sheath dress.

    • AnotherLadyLawyer :

      My vote is simple flats (not boots, maybe not loafers. Do you have other flats?) with a bandage and be prepared to laugh off the injury if anyone asks (I doubt anyone will ask).

  49. I am a bit late for “weekend” questions, but I’d love to hear your thoughts. I’m making a career change from academia to asset management. I’m currently an exec. asst. I make more money doing this than I would in academia, and this is one step towards a career in asset management.

    I describe myself as competent, educated, articulate, organized and driven. One problem- the younger males (early-mid 20’s) are quite rude to me and the other assts (all of whom are bright and good at their jobs). Their tone of emails and in-person conversations is rude, and they roll their eyes. In other words- they behave like 12 year old girls.

    I don’t ask that my colleagues roll out the red carpet. I ask that they treat me with the same respect they would a fellow analyst.

    Do you have any thoughts on how to stand up for myself w/out looking too sensitive/unprofessional/weak/dramatic?

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