…more like fishing for some European accents.
I’ll be back in a few weeks after I go on a quick (three-week) tour of Scandinavia. I won’t forget to buy you souvenirs.
In typical blogger fashion, I found out I was tagged for a Liebster Award when I was in my underwear in bed scrolling through my iPhone. To continue the “blogger lifestyle,” I will write this post weeping over ice cream and in a coffee shop. It’s bloggers and mad people like us who invent stuff like Facebook or a really bad permanent public diary.
So when I read A Bright Bite’s Liebster Award post that nominated me, I was extremely flattered and thought, “Ego boost, son!” Ashley’s blog is like a J. Crew catalog in that I just want to live in it. Sometimes I think we have the same brain when we she writes about Mindy or music, then I realize that we don’t, since she writes about her delicious recipes that I can only drool at. Realizing that there are intelligent, trendy, and sensible blogs like A Bright Bite motivates me to be a better Instagrammer.
Head over to A Bright Bite, follow it, and tell Ashley how awesome she is (and how we don’t like Taylor Swift, *wink*). Here’s what she asked me:
1. The year is not over yet, but what has been your favorite pop culture moment of 2013?
I tell myself to live in the moment, which is great whenever I remember Beyonce’s walk during the Super Bowl. That wasn’t so much a pop culture moment, so much as a historical event when all other walks were put to shame. #JustKidding #KONY2012 #Sharknado
2. What are your tips for balancing school, life and keeping up with your blog?
Thankfully I have an army of Harvard interns I keep in my basement. It’s a sweatshop sort of situation. It also helps that I don’t go out during the weekends, which negates the “life” part of your question.
Blogging is a hobby that I now realize is becoming more important to me, especially when I have blog drafts open during class. I normally write about life or school, so it’s all a giant circle.
3. What topics do you get most excited to write about?
Myself. (Kidding, sort of.)
Writing is a form of stress relief for me. I bring a notebook everywhere I go because just like my bladder, I never know when a really good idea needs to come out. Sketches, essays, tweets– anything that’s not homework.
4. We’ve all had them, but what is a fashion trend you totally gave into that you now cringe at when looking back?
I always thought fashion was some mysterious creature that visited every other girl but me, so I never really took part in “trends.” In high school, I was the nerd who wore khakis and polos, but knew UGGs were the Holy Grail. Thankfully, my parents were wise enough to tell me that UGGs were just really ugly.
5. Who is your favorite writer — journalist or fiction?
There are too many. I admire anyone who writes. I love journalists for just being experts at whatever story they are working on at a certain time then moving on to another one. Nora Ephron started as a journalist and has now become the wallpaper on my bookshelf. I love humorists for just being able to make readers elicit visible emotion (laughter), like David Sedaris. Malcolm Gladwell’s work is also great if you want to show off your intelligence in front of friends.
6. What are three items you refuse to leave the house without?
Empty bladder. (Another reference to the bladder.Let’s hear it for the bladder!)
7. Three words that describe you at 6 a.m.; Three words that describe you at midnight.
6 AM: sloppy, angelic, hungry
Midnight: sloppy, demonic, hungry
In keeping with the Liebster Award, I’ll pass the torch on to the ladies at Friends With Distance. One friend in NYC, the other in Italy, I enjoy keeping up with their travels and misadventures. They make having a long-distance friendship seem easy, but as they say, it is “rocky terrain.” Their questions are in the comments below, so check it out and read up!
P.S. Who’s your favorite blogger?
For readers of this blog, I appreciate your interest in my humorous (and sometimes ridiculous) cogitations that keep my world balanced. Then I remember that all the situations which I don’t tend to write about, due to their disinterest, make my world feel like its spinning out of orbit. But alas, this blog has helped me keep my feet on the ground.
In this crazy world in which we live, I am the Editor-In-Chief of a college newspaper and in addition to that, gruesome weather seems to happen too often. Below is an excerpt of a short piece I wrote for the newspaper with links on how you can donate to help disaster relief in the Philippines. You can participate by reading it first, then donating. Or the other way around.
By an accident of geography, Typhoon Haiyan passed through the Philippines after incubating in the largest ocean in the world and wrought havoc that was never seen before. Is this weather a foreshadowing of the future of our world? What is the future? Most importantly, is there a future for us?
Whatever the cause of the super typhoon is irrelevant, more so for the innocent victims who were living a sustainable life in the least developed part of the world. The reports and photos taken of the devastation is horrific to say the least and our hearts bleed for them. What is important, however, is what we as humans will do about it. Can we talk together about the future of climate change and these typhoons increasingly becoming the norm? We cannot have these 10,000 lessons to simply be forgotten.
Do the adults of this generation care to plan for the future, or have they accepted the fact that there is no future? Those planning to create a better world for us to inherit must learn to see beyond their lifetime.
For more information on how you can contribute to disaster response, click through the following links for lists of organizations:
Cold weather is a great excuse to climb back into bed and indulge in the warmth of 500 thread count. It’s like a good piece of banana bread when the butter hits the back of your tongue and you know life is
food good. As it is Monday morning and there is no time to make excuses for pushing aside productivity, here are some special stuff that I’ve been indulging in that will make you crave just five more minutes in bed or five more slices of pizza.
As soon as I was to start writing about Nora Ephron for this post, I ended up down the YouTube rabbit hole and watched every clip of her films (Heartburn, When Harry Met Sally, Julie & Julia). When I found out that a new book of her essays was published, I rushed to get my hands on it, naturally. After years of dedication and devotion aspiring to be at least one-eighth of this woman’s wit, I can only accomplish so much. If you’re reading this blog, then you’ll probably want this book.
There are circles of friends that I only wish I were at least one degree of separation to. Rachel Antonoff’s is one of them, especially after watching her latest video debuting her 2014 Spring collection. Last season, she and her brother’s girlfriend (new break-out up-and-comer out-of-the-blue, Ms. Lena Dunham) created a short documentary about best friends, all for her fashion line of course. This year’s features Gillian Jacobs and Jack Antonoff retelling her parents’ love story. Can you just imagine what their group text messages are like?
Let’s talk about it. Kerry Washington is amazing and maybe should just join the cast already (which would do a lot for diversity, Lorne). If you follow me on Twitter, then you know my live-tweets of SNL every week is just a lot of word vomit. There is no need to write a recap of a show that you’ve watched, but I so loved Ms. Washington that she deserves to be tagged on this blog.
It’s been a whirlwind of a weekend and a daze of confusement since I found out that I will be travelling to Europe throughout December! I’ve taken initiative and started a board on Pinterest. I will never leave you out, so this blog will be filled with wanderlust next month. I’ll be updating you with my travels and posting daily vlogs.
Tell me, what do you want to see when it comes to travelling?
In the spirit of Halloween, spooks, and horror, let’s talk about one of the most frightening things to ever happen to our generation– internships.
Conde Nast announced last week that their internship program will be ending after being sued by a series of former interns. Naturally, it blew up on Twitter and upset all the aspiring Carrie Bradshaw’s out there. It’s unfortunate, but in my opinion, the interns should have asked for secure jobs instead of suing them. *WINK*
A ubiquitous complaint among college students is the eagerness to graduate and get out there. What’s so special about rushing into “real life” anyway? It’s a classic case of the “grass is greener on the other side of the…diploma.” It all seems better when we trade the sweatpants for dress suits and our dignity for minimum wage. Internships are a great preview into that lifestyle. But just like our first time at summer camp, we want to go home after two days.
Internships are indeed valuable. It’s a great source of experience and enough labor to know that that is not what you want to do for the rest of your life. So to relieve the stress of looking for internships or currently having one, I’ve compiled a list of things to do in between answering phone calls.
(Note: the following advice is coming from someone who cried and quit her first job as a babysitter after one day)
HOW TO MAKE THE BEST OF YOUR UNPAID INTERNSHIPS:
And remember, millions of girls would kill to have your dress suit.
Lying is great. Obviously, it didn’t turn out too well with the lady who swallowed the horse, but other than her situation, lying is fun…in the moment. I do, however, feel about lying the way I feel about hats. They may work for other people, but I just can’t pull them off.
It was Sunday, and it is a time to celebrate brunch and a contest to see who can stay in their pajamas the longest. While I was scheduled to be somewhere, I opted out, taking one arrow (white lie) out of my quiver and get out of this “engagement” by saying that I had a “previously schedule engagement,” which is obviously rewatching last night’s episode of Saturday Night Live while wiping the Reddi Whip off my mouth. With my Sunday routine already in progress, I figure that it was an Instagram moment– you know that moment when the sun hits your window in the right spot and you realize that you are a product of technology, so you snap a pic in Lo-Fi.
On some level, I agree with what our parents are telling us, that social media is making us more disconnected and less empathetic. We’ve heard what you had to say, Louis C.K., one of today’s most successful and critically-acclaimed comedians, we get it. If we are to get anything positive as a society from social networking, it is catching lies. Lying is as popular as the puppies you see on the popular page of Instagram. Tweeting your flu symptoms or Vining your #OOTD is just a reflex, but your social network has become a time capsule for everything.
You do not need a lie detector, you need to login to Facebook.
So when the person you cancelled a meeting with “likes” the Instagram you took of yourself with whipped cream all over your face, it just means that you have become a more honest human being.
P.S. Little did I know, after writing this post, I found a TED Talk explaining precisely what I’m getting at…in a way that I’ll never accomplish…because of course, it’s a TED Talk.
Being called a “teacher’s pet” or “suck up” for the majority of one’s life can lead to the inevitable demise of such connotations. On my journey to exchange my pastel variety of Lacoste polos for leather pants, I knew I was missing something.
Last month, I bought my inaugural pair of Doc’s, an experience every Brooklyn native has probably gone through. Having gone to an all-girls school that required us to wear construction boots reminiscent of the Spice Girls, stomping around in large shoes was a familiar adventure. Soon after, Ms. Miley debuts a new music video notoriously wearing nothing but my Doc’s that I thought would be my induction into my new age of Punk Renaissance. Then much to my dismay, my classmate turned to me and asked what color my Doc Martens were because she wanted to “buy herself a pair.”
I’ve only taken one Sociology class and it will probably stay that way. And while I probably will not and could not remember how Goffman or Mead contributed to the study of something or other, I do know that there is a human and natural need to belong. I’ve already examined the culty nature of SoulCycle, but of course the reason we all still go there or to the gym is not to just “be fit,” right? We just need to belong somewhere. It’s obviously a theme that I’ve been exploring lately.
During my weekly visit to Facebook, I have discovered through NewsFeed (if that’s what it’s still called) that BBM is apparently on the iPhone now. A few of my Facebook “friends” complained about people sharing their new BBM Pin because they just want to copy everyone else who is using it. Yes, this is something that is literally “discussed” on Facebook. Maybe it’s because I didn’t understand what irony was until my sophomore year of high school but it is the only thing that I log on to Facebook for. And while we complain about women being Photoshopped for magazines, we admittedly take one hour to choose what Instagram filter makes us look best.
It’s hard to know who to admire and who’s a phony, except for Holden Caulfield. Remember Dash from The Incredibles? When his mom tells him that everyone is special, he responds with typical Pixar wit, “Which is another way of saying no one is.”
The only people I admire are those who stay in their “outside clothes” inside their house. I mean, really, if changing your shoes and removing your bra are not the first things you do when you get home, then I will assume you are Superman.
As for the color of my Doc’s, they’re 1460 Cherry Red.
A lot of people ask me why I am studying Journalism, which some might argue is a “lost cause” (THANKS A LOT, CNN). After three years of taking classes and twenty years of never closing my mouth, I think I finally have an answer. Being a journalist is just a good excuse for talking to people who I never normally would approach. And though it takes a great listener (and a good Moleskine) to be a journalist and writer, I will manage to find a way to talk about myself. Then if no one cares to listen, I resort to Twitter, where RT’s and Favorites are basically applause. Thanks to Mindy Kaling, I think I can finally steer every conversation towards me.
I have no doubt that conversation is an art. And not “my 3-year-old kid can do that” type of art. My dad gave me a book in high school called The Art of Conversation, when I probably needed a book called, How To Stop Talking Because There Are Other People, You Selfish B*tch. I have encountered “foot in mouth” syndrome along the way, but I’ve learned to add more to the list of conversational taboo.
SoulCycle: Move over, Scientology. The culty, trendy bikers at SoulCycle are taking the lead in controversy. It’s the church where “Sunday’s best” means LuluLemon, and wine is replaced with SmartWater and the instructor’s sweat. I have compared my best friend to a Mormon missionary working for the gods of SoulCycle, while I am simply the one who goes on Easter and Christmas. Months ago after taking my first class and self-indulgently posting about it on Facebook, one of my “friends” immediately makes a New Yorker-worthy status cynically shooting down SoulCycle. In a victorious turn of events, I got more “likes.” Then somehow, SoulCycle has managed to find itself in the middle of a conversation again, which is no surprise in Brooklyn. I was speaking with someone whose friend had just quit teaching at The New School to be a SoulCycle Instructor. I tread lightly on the subject, unsure where my conversational partner stood on the issue, realizing the polarization between cyclists and bikers and everyone else. But at least they can just brush off haters with their killer calves.
Flashdance: Late Friday night, I was in the middle of a conversation I never thought I would have. Three others, who were in their late 20′s and early 30′s, started talking about Flashdance. I am a person who only watches political debates in the event one candidate makes a pop culture reference. Here I am, too young to be having a conversation about a movie that came out in 1983, ten years before I was born? This can’t be happening. I made a comment about banana clips, just after googling what they were. Some people have not watched Flashdance, therefore should not be mentioned in a conversation. This can also be applied to Star Wars: Return of the Jedi– yes, another movie I have yet to watch.
Journalism with a capital J: Tom Wolfe would be rolling in his grave if he read the tweets of The Huffington Post. Oh, he’s still alive? Then send him a link to my blog. I was attending an event for High School Journalism students when the MC asked the audience for a joke– I think I was a bit too loud when I responded with, “Ha! Journalism.” If CNN now has to keep reminding the audience (and itself) that “This is CNN,” then maybe we may be losing the point of being The Fourth Estate. As naive as it may sound, I still believe that the next Woodward & Bernstein are somewhere out there…but they’re probably too busy updating their blog and Tumblr.
P.S. What’s on your list of conversational taboo?
Alas, it’s October– the month that Lindsay Lohan’s movie characters are obviously obsessed with.
After a long week of writing papers and dealing with people, Friday night is for letting it all out. And by “letting it all out,” I mean staying in under the blankets and watching teen movies from the 90′s that were all adapted from Shakespeare/Jane Austen/Greek myths. It was like the 90′s were a post-John Hughes era when producers were looking for stories that teens could eat up. Well, it worked. English teachers don’t mind it either, especially since iambic pentameter may be too cumbersome to translate, when Amanda Bynes could do it for you (when she was still able to).
So when deadlines are getting you down and being “under the weather” sounds like a good excuse, here is a list of my favorite things to do in the fall:
Sweatpants. Sorry, Karl Lagerfeld.
Complaining about Target putting out Christmas decorations
Buying more bulky sweaters so you can eat more
Being so congested that you can’t hear what anybody is ever saying
Not having to time to update your blog because your professors don’t realize your priorities. I’ll be back, lovelies.
Last weekend, as I walked the glossy, waxed floors of Bloomingdale’s, I had no intention of purchasing anything, much like everyone else everywhere. Then my mom pointed to a colorful spread of striped sweaters in the Free People corner of the department store and exclaimed, “Oh, this is so you!” I took a quick glance at the mannequin wearing one of the displayed sweaters and my first thought was, “Yeah, it is.” Then my gut kicked in overdrive and my subconscious iconoclastic aspirations caused me to yell out, “Am I that predictable?!”
Throughout high school, I was struggling to be in fashion rather than finding my style. I subscribed to ELLE during my freshman year because I was mandated by the school magazine drive, but also to find out what I should be wearing that winter season. I, along with most girls, aspire to work in fashion the way all boys aspire to be cowboys and baseball players but settle to be a sports newscaster or something. I thought I would be the next Tavi Gevinson, but then I soon realized after reading my first issue of ELLE that all the avant garde clothes featured in editorials were not meant for 13-year-old me. Alas, I was unfulfilled with my wardrobe that was “so lacking of cool.” During that time, I had an utter contempt for fashion and its rather expensive schemes. I did, however, quickly understand fashion and trends by reading all the articles which gave me a detector for who was really keeping in style on the streets of New York.
It would only be a far-fetched dream of my 13-year-old broken-down-Converse-wearing-self to believe that my current college best friend would tell me that I should start a fashion blog. Now that I find opening my birchwood IKEA closet to select my day’s garments an actual party, I learn that I have become “predictable.” That’s not what I asked for! But maybe it is, when my first subscription to ELLE came in the mail. As my mom and I continued to the SALE racks of Bloomingdale’s, I spotted a pair of pants which I looked at for five seconds before realizing that I would never wear it. Being the supportive mother that she is, my mom tells me, “Those pants are cool.” And when a mom tells a girl that something is “cool,” sirens are supposed to be going off alarming the girl that it is in fact, “not cool.” I somehow reconsidered and took a second look at the dual-fabric pant saying, “But this is so not me,” to which my mom quickly whips a mildly teenager-ish, “So?”
Only in college did my sense of style finally arrive, much like a teenage girl having her first sip of unsupervised alcoholic drink with initial befuddlement, “So this is what it’s like.” I first walked into a J. Crew during the summer after high school when I assuredly called that store the mothership that I never knew was calling me. The only way to describe my current style would be Kennebunkport meets Williamsburg Farmer’s Market, with the occasional “villain in a John Hughes film.” From then on, my collection of button-down shirts ranging from shrunken ex-boyfriend to perfect-fit has grown beyond compare. I do daydream that if I were an unabashed risk-taker (and unbelievably wealthy) that my closet will replicate that of Beyonce’s, and maybe these pants that were paneled in linen fabric, fitted in jersey fabric on the back, and are “so not me” is a step toward that.
I bought the pants, but with a mild reluctance. It is currently hanging on my bedroom door, still with its various tags, and it is staring at me. Of course I Google the pants’ brand name to see what celebrities have worn it, as well as to validate my purchase. There in the vast wasteland of Google Images are Hilary Duff, Olivia Munn, Kristin Cavallari, among others. I think to myself, “Olivia Munn? She’s cool, I watch The Newsroom. But do I want to wear the same pants as Hilary, Olivia, and Kristin?” I examine its rustic-looking zippers and faded linen cloth, I imagine it something to be out of a 2008 issue of ELLE. I realize that they’re just pants. So I cut off the tags because that’s what Beyonce would want me to do, yet all I wanted was to escape the void of predictability.