personal

Unemployment Part Deux Day 1

Tomorrow would have been the three month mark at my new company. Apparently I was not destined to make it that far.

Yesterday started out as a peculiar Monday. I missed my usual bus but it was warmer than it’s been in about 2 weeks, so I stood and waited for the next one. I accidentally picked a very tight bus seat, and had a woman with a very large coat sat next to me. I made it to Starbucks before realizing I didn’t have enough money to pay for my coffee in full, so I reloaded my app. I was the first into the office, but couldn’t find my keys, and waited until the next person got in to open the door. I put on mascara as my coworkers trickled in. It was a very gray Monday and I assumed that the funk over the office was because of that. My office friend, who happens to be the head of the office currently, seemed to be avoiding my eye, but it is Monday morning, most people tend to avoid eye contact until at least noon.

By 12:30, it seemed as if the office had emptied out. Everyone must be at lunch, I thought, so I gathered my things and sat in the office kitchen while I heated up my chicken soup. As the microwave buzzed, I scrolled through my twitter feed, uncomfortably perched on the edge of the stool while the microwave counted down the minute. Suddenly a notification crossed my screen. It was from the head of HR. What could she want?

“hey, I’m in the back. come and see me” she said. Well that is strange, isn’t it? Seeing as her office is in Austin. “Sure!” I answered, as my heart began to pound. I know what this is, and this will not end well. I walked toward the back office avoiding coworkers as I went.

In less the ten minutes I was out of the office, thin manila envelope in hand. I half smiled at the account executive who watched me as I made my way to my desk. She knows what just went down, I can see the pity in her eyes. I closed out my tabs on my laptop and shut it down. This is it, I thought, time to clean out my desk. I filled a shopping bag with the snacks that had accumulated at my desk, making sure to check everywhere, in case I forgot something. I waved goodbye to another girl who had been given a similar manila envelope and hit the down button on the elevator.

But now what?

I called my fiancé, jobless, I laughed. This is comical, isn’t it? Five months prior I had been in the exact same position. I called my parents, they told me they were sorry for me, I understand, this is an awkward topic for most people. What do you say? How do you comfort someone when they’d only been with the company for 3 months? I’m not sure, but I guess it doesn’t really matter.

Back to the drawing board, I suppose.

The incoherent rambling of a wannabe writer

Magazines have always been a favorite outlet of mine. Their glossy pages and giant letters called to me and encouraged me to pay the $5 for the random issue that stood out in front of me on the newsstand that day. That’s how I knew I wanted to write. I wanted to be one of the people whose names were printed in small black letters under a grand article title. I just didn’t know how to get there. So I interned. I spent every summer from the age of 16 to the age of 19 working in the editorial office of KIWI Magazine where I did everything from fetch office supplies to research holiday gift guides in June. It was not what I imagined. So I went to college.

In college I studied communication, focusing on journalism. I pretended I knew what I was doing when writing essays at 4am or when researching for an article about “BENNYs” for the school’s newspaper. But I could never say my heart was fully in it. I never felt complete after turning in a mock article. But I remember loving the research. I loved being given a topic and thinking of only that topic for 3 days straight; spending hours in the library researching and printing, I practically had my own computer there. But this was school. Life would surely be different. It was this thinking that lead to a new internship. My cousin’s girlfriend was working in the advertising department for a beautiful food magazine. She sold advertising space to mom and pop shops on the East Coast. She told me her friend in the marketing department was looking for an intern to help out for the summer. I decided to give it a go.

That summer was one of the best I’d ever had. I was almost an adult, I worked in an amazing office, I made a few friends, but was only allowed into the editorial office when dropping something off. Apparently there is a hard line between the business side and the creative side of a magazine. And that summer I was on the wrong side. So instead, I took home back copies and studied the glossy pages. I worked on their summer events and followed the magazine’s publisher around as if she were a god. I don’t think she ever actually took notice of me, though. Didn’t matter, I was where I needed to be at that time.

Next summer I graduated college. I was given the opportunity to intern there again, but turned it down in favor of a paying job… One I did not have yet.

July 2013 I was offered an advertising coordinator position at one of the biggest newspaper publishing companies in the country, so I took it. It really is all about who you know. I assumed I would work at the newspaper during the day and write at night. And that is how this blog was born. My first post was sent from my parents house in Naples, Florida the day before I flew back to New York to start my first real job.

But as days passed into weeks, and weeks into months my writing became almost nonexistent. By the following February I had sunken into a full blown depression. I wasn’t mentally prepared to work in a windowless office in a position that required absolutely no creativity. I was miserable and couldn’t even hide it anymore. By March I had booked a trip to Europe. My favorite place in the entire world was Rome, I thought it was about time I had gone back. After extensive googling and convincing, I bought a slightly sketchy groupon for a 6 day trip that would bring me to Paris for three days and Rome for another three. That November, with my boyfriend of a year in tow (much to my parents’ chagrin,) I touched down in Paris and squished the two of us into a train with the morning rush hour traffic.

The next three days we met Paris.

I visited museums and ate croissants. I was dumb and hadn’t researched enough, but it was fine. I was in Paris after all! We walked around the city eating crepes and ogling  fancy stores. On the fourth morning we woke up early and left our Moroccan themed hotel for the last time. We shuffled our way into Charles de Gaulle airport with sleep in our eyes and pillows in our hand. While walking to our gate, I passed the French version of the Winter issue of my old magazine, and it definitely caught my eye. Snowflakes covered the magazine name and every headline was in French, bien sûr. I needed it.

I have only ever bought magazines on the stand. I enjoy having the ability to buy whenever I please. I don’t feel rushed to read it and can take a month or a year if I so choose. But today something was different.

This afternoon, while reading the beginning of The Art of Editing No. 3 I was given the option to continue reading if, and only if, I subscribed to the Paris Review. I had always enjoyed the Paris Review but hadn’t been a loyal reader. But I was entranced by the article. The interviewee had my total and complete attention and I wanted to be her. I wanted to know everything there was to know about her life and her work, her career and her current whereabouts, so I subscribed.  I was given the option to subscribe for one year of four issues, or two years of eight. Each option gave me a “free gift” of interviews from over the years and neither was cheap. I have spent the last two years deciding whether I want to spend the $6 to subscribe to Conde Nast’s Traveler even though I check their site weekly, but this morning, I deep dove into a $95, two year subscription of a literary magazine that I rarely read.

Is this what a stroke feels like?

Yes ok, that was dramatic of me to say. But I feel different. As I get older, more of me is looking to become the elegant literary buff I wanted to be as a kid and less of me is looking to write. My book collection has grown 10 fold just from last January, and I haven’t even read half of them yet. I think it’s funny that now I dress in mostly black, with dark sunglasses and avoid eye contact with strangers so that I seem more mysterious. None of this is intentional now. Now it is just me, the way I react to being here, in a job that requires no creativity. I guess I’ve accidentally decided to let myself sink into invisibility so that when I do let out my creative ideas people are surprised, instead of expecting them the way they used to.

Reading and writing have always been my hobbies, they were my wheelhouse, so to speak. They were where I was most comfortable. But now I tend to gravitate to words that are already written; concrete ideas that don’t need me to develop them. I shy away from writing and it makes me sad. But writing isn’t something you’re just good at all of a sudden. You need to practice. I just wish I had more motivation to.

Day 4 of Employment

So… I got a job.

After about 6 weeks of doing the bare minimum to stay alive (including netflix and cold brew) I’ve transitioned back into reality. Because I was so proud of myself for surviving my first day of employment, after work on my first day I bought myself an $80 candle and a $14 LIFE magazine issue about the secret life of spies (which has been thrilling thus far.)

And so it begins.

Today is my forth day on the job, Friday the 13th. I know literally nothing. None of the google docs I have opened make sense to me. My manager flew in from Austin to New York to train me for my first week and I’m a little terrified of disappointing him. But to be fair, he was well aware of the job I was doing previous to this and how it has very little correlation to my new job.

So we wait.

But since it is now 10 to four on Friday afternoon, I think I’m safe. The last few days have been be a whirlwind of note taking and brain explosions. I’m excited to know more about the company and my position but I’m still terrified of fucking up…

However, In an hour and 10 minutes it will not matter because I will have survived my first week at my new job!

Oh the excitement of being an adult.

Bikini Bridges and Crazy Wishes

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Maybe it’s just my lack of interest, or my inability to focus on two things at once, but I’ve never really focused on my imperfections. I know I have them, of course, but unlike most women, I don’t harp on them. They’re there. I get over it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not superwoman.

Sometimes my belly bothers me, or I notice how big my thighs are but it doesn’t take long for me to refocus my attention onto something more important, like pizza or my family.

That’s why articles like this bother me.
Article – Why We Need To End The Bikini Bridge Madness Right Now

The writer of this article sounds like a bitter woman who is unhappy with herself and feels the need to take it out on everyone else.

Background info: the bikini bridge that she discusses in the article was a hoax started by 4chan users to be annoying. They didn’t take it seriously (although, it was a dick move. come on, women don’t have enough body issues?) But it’s exploded into this ridiculous fight between women with it and women without it. Idiots all over the Internet are saying its the new “thigh gap” and are claiming how silly the trend is. It has taken the Internet by storm. It’s actually considered news. I used to want to be a journalist. Now I just cringe when I see the insanity that some consider “news.”

But I’m not here to talk about the stupidity that is the people of the Internet. I needed to vent about how this article made me feel.

Ever since I hit puberty I’ve been a “bigger” girl. I don’t have a thigh gap, or a bikini bridge, and my ass jiggles when I walk. But, as I mentioned before, I don’t give a shit. I’m happy; I’m happy with my life, with my body, and with Oreos, and don’t have time to worry about my pouch, as my boyfriend and I lovingly refer to the part of my belly that pops out a little more than the rest. And because of my “I don’t give a shit” attitude, I support everyone who is as happy with their bodies as I am.

It upsets me knowing that this elation over a person’s own body is not something a lot of women experience, and I wish I could help them with that. Don’t let anyone fool you, being happy with yourself is the greatest feeling in the world, whether you’re toned, chubby, naturally thin, etc. It’s your body, you only get one. Respect it, love it, cherish it, understand it. And let others do the same.

That’s the thing most people cannot comprehend. It’s also the one thing that drives me insane. If you’re on the heavier side, that’s awesome! However, you do not have to bash people who are thin to validate yourself or your weight. Be happy with yourself and stop worrying about everyone else.

And if you’re on the thinner side, good for you! As long as your happy with it, don’t think bashing “fat” people is going to make you look better, because it won’t. It will make you look like a troll.

The article on elitedaily.com is a complete joke. When my friend Sam first sent it to me, I stopped reading it half way through because I was disgusted. The writer continuously bashes people who are naturally skinny in order to prove her point. She started out with a decent argument, that the craziness over the bikini bridge was, just that, craziness. But somewhere within her research and writing, her words acquired a harshness that she should have left at the door. As a journalist you learn to be objective. I understand that it was an opinion piece, but her skinny-shaming is not an opinion that should have been shared. She can seriously hurt with her words and I think she might have forgotten that.

As a bigger girl, I have issues with fat shaming, obviously, but I also do not appreciate thin-shaming, because it is essentially shaming someone for who they naturally are.

Contrary to what this writer thinks, a lot of people are naturally thin so they have thigh gaps and bikini bridges. It’s how they were built. That doesn’t mean she should hate them for it.

I suppose it all comes down to this:

If you don’t like the way you look, change what you dislike for yourself.

Never change for someone else.

But on the other hand, don’t think that if someone looks differently than you do, they are in the wrong. Because it only makes you sound like you need a hug and a slap, and I’m not sure which one I’d rather dish out first.