Category Archives: Uncategorized

An Open Letter to Winter Weather (In Rhyme)

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Dear Frigid Winter Weather,

For weeks you’ve plagued my days
With snow and slush and frozen mush –
I’m in a frosty haze.

Each morning as I step from bed
I’m met with chilly floors;
Fearful to touch the metal knobs
On all my stone-cold doors.

My landlord is an icy bitch
And won’t turn up the heat.
So all I have to keep me warm
Are slippers for my feet.

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I walk down Lexington, a scarf
Wound tight around my neck.
Because of you, my four block stroll
Is a long and icy trek.

The subway tracks are packed and wet.
Trains running with delays.
Daily commutes in thick snow boots
Avoiding puddles like a maze.

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Pictured: Entrance to the 86th Street Subway Station

Winter storms come days apart,
All with stupid names.
I’m not sure what you’re up to, winter,
But I’m sick of all your games.

There was no time before this year
You flew in with such strength.
I could tolerate your presence here
But never to this length.

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Not only I have noticed.
I know many would agree.
Cause every fucking Instagram
Is of a snowy tree.

And every Facebook status shouts,
“Guys! OMG! It’s cold!!!”
All the updates, texts, and tweets
Are getting kind of old.

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#snowytrees #winter #snowmygod #stfu

And then that stupid Groundhog
Ran and hid and bid you, “Stay!”
I’ll kill that thing, I swear, by spring,
So you will go away.

Cause I just miss being outside
And walking where I please
Without the fear of freezing,
Slipping, falling to my knees…

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I’m running out of Netflix shows.
I’m running out of tea.
So if I may, on this cold day,
Speak on behalf of NYC.

In my open letter to winter weather
“PLEASE LEAVE US!” New York begs.
So I can wear my shorts and skirts
And finally shave my legs.

Love Fuck you very much,

Kristen

The Return

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Ladies and Gentlemen, friends and neighbors, family, co-workers, enemies, stalkers, sisters, lovers, haters, readers – I have three words for you.

I have returned.

Like Michael Jordan to the NBA, like Simba to Pride Rock, like Britney to the music world, and like most birthday presents that aren’t checks or gift cards, I am back where I started from.

ImageRemember who you are.

I have returned to where I belong – the blogosphere – to bring to you more of my advice and commentary on the world, New York City, relationships, food, naps, not going to the gym and other things that are important to me. I hope I’ve been missed as much as I’ve missed posting, and I’m so happy to hopping back on the blog-o-train. That, and because I’ve been bothering so many people to listen to my senseless rantings that I think I just need a new outlet. I’ve been cooped up in my own mind for too long and I need to be set free into the world to learn and share and fly!!!! That being said, I’m going to start going in a new direction with this. Keeping in mind what I’ve written about over the past year and some of the feedback I’ve gotten, I’m ready to open your eyes to more of the weirdness that I happen to set mine on.

Some tune-age to set the mood:

I’ll keep this short and sweet – just as a quick note letting you all know that your favorite weekly read is BACK. Keep posted for some fun new stuff coming up really soon.

Kristen’s Blog – Making your morning train rides a little more entertaining since May 2012.

See you soon.

Day 336 – So You’re About To Graduate College…

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Yesterday afternoon, I spent some time browsing my Facebook and Twitter feeds and was overwhelmed by the amount of “Last undergrad class…EVER!” posts and tweets I saw. And I had a few reactions:

1) Congrats on making it to your last class! I slept through mine.

2) I’m not old enough to NOT be the youngest person in the workforce.

3) Where the hell did this year go?

I started this blog almost a full year ago to track my journey through my first post-graduate year and I’m in disbelief that I’m almost at Day 365. (*Note – I clearly did some math wrong along the way because on May 12th, the day after graduation, it will not be day 365. But don’t worry. Those of us in PR don’t really need to know numbers. Or counting.) But I guess I better start believing it, because I’m going to have to stop telling people I “just graduated college” and switched to “I graduated last year” when they ask what I’ve been doing with my life.

Anyways, now that I’m an expert in city life post-college (LOL), I’m gonna share with you youngin’s some fun facts and can’t-miss tips on how to get through year one of post-grad life. This is a compilation of my best advice in one list, SO LISTEN UP!!

10. Never underestimate the importance of Happy Hour.

Because it’s amazing. It’s cheap drinks, it’s handsome business-boys in shirts and ties, it’s like day-drinking sort of cause the sun is sometimes still out – essentially it’s everything I want in one place. Happy Hour becomes the go-to for dates, mini-reunions and hang outs. Because what you’ll come to realize is the “Come over and pregame before we go out on Thursday!” just won’t really excite people anymore, but “Wanna grab a few drinks after work on Thursday?” rolls off the tongue much more nicely.

9. Realize that you’re probably going to gain weight. Get a gym membership.

It starts slow. You start meeting up with friends for “a few drinks after work” a few times a week. You browse Yelp and find some cute new dinner spots. The weather gets cold, and Seamless comes into your life. You start ordering your lunch to the office – delivery. You sit at a desk from 9-5. Since it’s cold, you’re wearing layers. So no one’s noticing those extra pounds. All of a sudden, spring hits and your shorts are quiteeeee a bit tighter than they were last year. Yeah, it happens. Counteract it best you can by joining a gym or at the very least, going for a run once and a while. No matter how much it hurts.

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8. Learn how to budget your money.

Seriously. While my waistline was getting wider because of the above reasons, my wallet was getting thinner. If I had $5 for every time I wished I had taught myself the importance of saving money I wouldn’t have to worry about saving money. Maybe people are just generally better at this than me, but I would’ve loved to, before graduation, have taken like two seconds to remember that a penny earned doesn’t have to immediately become a penny spent.

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7. Visit your Alma Mater at least once (and try not to die while you’re there).

Homecoming. Go to it. Or any other random weekend. Visiting your college in the year following your graduation is like Christmas but better because it’s not cold and everyone actually really excited to see each other! It’s a mini-vacation, the closest thing you’ll get to Spring Break in your post-college career. The sub-point of advice within this point of advice – when drinking, don’t try to keep up with the college kids. Why? See my next point…

6. Drinking is harder. Learn how to adapt.

You’ll need to come to the conclusion on your own that you can’t drink nearly as much as you could in college after a few months at home. Between waking up early to get to work and just getting generally out of drinking shape, your 4-nights-a-week college rage-fests just don’t fit into a post-grads schedule. Instead, embrace new drinking activities, like Brunch, to fill the void left from giving up Tuesday night ladies nights or Thursday night binges. Believe me, being hungover at work is not a condition you want to be in often.

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5. Know that G-Chat is the new Facebook chat.

Yes, being in almost-constant communication with your besties remains important following college. So where group-texts fail (who can deal with their iPhone vibrating on their desk all day long?) and where Facebook reads ‘unprofessional,’ G-Chat becomes convenient and perfectly work-place acceptable. It was the most valuable secret of post-grad life. Inconspicuous chat windows can be disguised as e-mail drafts, all those super-important messages you’re about to send out to clients and colleagues. No one needs to know that it’s really links to your favorite BuzzFeed articles and other NSFW things. It’s a gem. A diamond in the rough. So necessary.

4. Enjoy being single.

Because as much as we all just wanted to settle down with a boyfriend after graduation and through most of the winter months (Oh, that was just me? Okay..), people still generally suck at being in relationships. And that’s okay. There are so many YoPros to meet, so many dates to be gone on, and so many fun things like Grouper to experiment with. It’s the most fun time in our lives to be on our own, going out with our friends, having cocktails with bankers and playing beer pong with fratty guys in “Murray Chill.”

3. Invest in a good set of wine glasses. 

You’re going to need them. “Wine nights” become your Sunday-Wednesday nights after college. You don’t need to schedule them like you used to with the roomies. Instead of, “Hey, anyone want to stay in and just have a few glasses of wine tonight?” the question is, “WHERE IS MY WINE OPENER?!” Wine. Always. Wine.

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2a. Go out a lot.

Explore the city, meet new people, try new drinks. There is more to see…than can ever be seen…more to do…than can ever be done…

2b. Stay in a lot.

It’s okay to stay in more, too. And it’s definitely okay to enjoy staying in. Because after a long day of work, sometimes all you want is to cuddle on the couch with your pup and a glass of wine and watch Game of Thrones reruns on Netflix. Which sounds like an ideal Friday night to me.

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1. Enjoy every minute.

While this year was a change, it was truly a great year. The first year out of college is a journey. You meet a ton of new people, have some incredible experiences, some ups, more downs. You’ll gain weight, you’ll lose weight. You’ll get screwed over by some douche you swore you’d never fall for again and refuse to date a nice guy who’d probably be nothing but amazing to you. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll be late to work a few times. But overall, you’ll have a blast. Yes, college was the time of my life, and probably the time of yours too, but the fun doesn’t stop once you move the tassel, I promise. So take advantage of these last few weeks in school, and then feel free to take FULL advantage of the year that lies ahead of you.

Oh, and by the way, CONGRATULATIONS!

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Can’t believe this was a year ago. I miss and love you guys to pieces.

So where does that leave me? A blogger dedicated to exploring one year in post-grad life. I’ve got some ideas….Stay with me and you’ll see how I continue my journey through the blogosphere. 😉 I’m not going anywhere.

A Quick Diversion

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I set out to write a post this afternoon about what it’s like to celebrate a post-grad birthday, but with the events of this past week still fresh in everyones minds, I just feel it isn’t yet appropriate.

Two days ago, as all of us are fully aware, Boston was struck by acts of terror, injuring and killing bystanders at the Boston Marathon’s finish line. These actions were completely unjustified. In my father’s own words, “utter bullshit.” Not only were they directed at innocents, but because there seems to be simply no reason behind it. At a time when each of the affected persons and families, all of America at that, is waiting for answers, there are none. We are all asking questions, and each is met with a resounding silence.

This is the latest in a series of events in our country that has caused me to doubt over and over whether or not we as humans are inherently good. It’s the question that was asked through the majority of my Sociology classes during my years at the University of Miami. “Are we, as people, inherently good, and do some diverge and become bad?” or “Are we inherently bad, and do the many who are able to overcome that, show us the good in the world?” Through all of these tragedies we’ve witnessed, from the Sandy Hook shootings to the Aurora Colorado massacre all the way back to 9/11, there is evidence abound for the latter assumption. And yet, I still have to stand behind the first.

As horrifying as each of these events is, and other smaller scale tragedies that don’t even make the headlines, what is even more breathtaking is the way we see people reach out to one another. If you’re following the news, you’re hearing these stories. Marathon runners who passed the finish line only to continue running towards the hospital to donate blood; Boston residents opening their homes to marathon runners; former NFL players carrying injured bystanders to safety. And cities across our nation uniting, and standing with each other.

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Like this widely circulated photo preaches, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that,” and as Dr. King’s quote continued, “Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.”

We see this, time and time again. When a state, or a city, or simply another American is affected by an act of terror or pain or anger, we stand together as a whole against that darkness. People reaching out to strangers, lending help and support to those in need. Whether it be in the form of monetary donations, blood drives, candlelight vigils, or simple social media updates. It’s our way of letting others know, “We’re here for you. Don’t give up. You’re not alone.”

And it is for this reason I know that we as a people must be inherently good. Because while some take the darker path and for reasons unbeknownst to the rest of us, hurt those around them, the rest of society joins hands against violence, against hate. And we fight, like so many around us, to stop these terrorizing acts that happen so close to home. And we don’t let these events stop us. New Yorkers went back to work in their office buildings. Students in Newtown, Connecticut went back to school. Colorado residents still go to movie theaters, and people across the nation will continue to run marathons. In fact, we may see people running marathons in honor of those victimized by these acts. Like George W. Bush declared in his address after the September 11th attacks, even acts that “shatter steel cannot dent the steel of American resolve.”

We’re asking lots of questions, about who stands behind this and why. But maybe the best answer, for once, can just be, “You’re safe. This person won’t hurt you again. There will be justice.” Imagine his or her name is not published. And he or she does not get the fame they probably wished to achieve through this. Well, good. To me, that’s justice. For them to be punished – and worse, to have no one even know their name.

My heart goes out to all who were affected, not only by the bombings at the Boston marathon, but to anyone who’s lives or families have felt the pain of tragedies big and small across America and across the world. And I hope that the light of the goodness of others can dispel the darkness.

Day 328 – “NSFW”

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I have never hated the sound of a camera shutter as much as I did this morning when I was SnapChatting a friend a silly selfie and left the sound on my iPhone on.

I froze, duck lips in full force, praying no one heard the loud Chhhhhh that ran across the office. Out of the corner of my eye, I watched the guy across the room peek out from behind his computer screen as I tried to make it look like I was screen-shotting something. Narrowly avoiding what would’ve been a seriously humiliating moment in the office, I turned my sound off as quickly as I could.

There are a few things that are NSFW – Not Safe For Work, that is, and apparently, SnapChat is one of them. It very much depends on your workplace, however, as some of my friends are able to watch full TV episodes on Hulu Plus during their work day. Don’t worry Jess, I’m not gonna say any names. But you’ll learn as year one of PostGrad Life progresses just what is and isn’t safe for work.

1. SnapChat

Like I just mentioned, often SnapChat is NSFW. Unless you are actually smart and remember to turn the sound off when you get to your desk. But seriously, unless you’re sneakily snapping selfies, be careful, because it’s going to be hard to explain this face if you’re caught doing it at your desk:

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2. Hilarious BuzzFeed Articles

It is a scientifically proven fact that the only time it is impossible to hold in laughter is when it is absolutely necessary to hold in laughter. The workplace is one of those places you should try to contain the giggles as best you can due to an undeniable law. It’s called the Law of KYMS – Keeping Your Mouth Shut. I have a hard time following the Law of KYMS every time I open up a link to a Buzzfeed article from an e-mail or a g-chat someone has sent to me. I very often have to physically cup my hands over my mouth to stifle an embarrassing display of hysterical laughter that would be NSFW.

Wanna see if you can follow the Law of KYMS? Check out the 25 Funniest Autocorrects Buzzfeed article, one of my all time favorites. If you can hold in laughter through all twenty five, I’ll buy you a beer. But then also probably stop being your friend because they’re hilarious and if you don’t agree we shouldn’t hang out because I only like funny people.

3. Catching Up on Game of Thrones

The sex. The violence. The incest. The revenge. The totally-out-of-nowhere plot twists. If unlike me, you’re able to watch TV at work somehow, know that Game of Thrones is definitely NSFW. Imagine the setting. You have HBO Go open in one window, an Excel spreadsheet in another for easy clicking back and forth. But you become entranced with the show. Battles of good and evil are unfolding in front of your eyes as your heart races in anticipation. Then suddenly, the LAST POSSIBLE THING you ever thought would happen on the show happens. And you try to react like this:

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But you WANT to react like this:

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And I’m not sure what kind of job you have but the latter reaction would be met with some confusion in my office.

4. Stinky Food

Not only should certain activities be discouraged in the office, but often your choice of lunch can be a not-safe-for-work factor. The Lunch Hour is a sacred hour in the workplace. Where you can finally peel your eyes from your computer screen, give your ever-typing fingers a break, and rejuvenate – boost up your energy to get you through the rest of the day. For those of us trying to save some cash, bringing your lunch and eating it at your desk is a common occurrence  And nothing ruins the sanctity of lunchtime than having to smell your coworkers stinky egg salad as you try to enjoy your midday meal.

Some NSFW Foods you should Avoid:

  • Anything with curry
  • Egg salad
  • Fish, specifically tuna fish
  • Asparagus and Broccoli
  • Microwave popcorn
  • Burritos

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5. Looking at Pictures of Ryan Gosling

Because:

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So stay focused at work, post-grads, or if you must distract yourself, stick to Pinterest.

Best of luck!

Day 309 – F.O.M.O.

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I apologize for my brief hiatus from the blogosphere, but fear not – I have returned. I know you probably are all wondering just what I was doing for the past sixteen days; perhaps you had a bit of F.O.M.O…a Fear Of Missing Out? Well, whether you did or not, developing F.O.M.O. is exactly what I’m going to be blogging about today.

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F.O.M.O. [ F(ear) O(f) M(issing) O(ut)] (Foh-mo) noun 

The condition in which one who is separated from a group of people or a large scale event experiences fear, discomfort, and utter depression due to the misfortune of being unable to partake in events and activities with said group or at said event and understanding this means you will be missing something amazing. May lead to irrational and rash decisions such as last-minute flight bookings, over-drinking, or spontaneous outbursts of hysterical tears at your desk.

I have experienced, and believe I will continue to experience, the worst post-graduate F.O.M.O. symptoms thus far this month. Why? Simply because the month of March for the past few years of my life was always unreal. The bomb diggity. March was…well, Madness, if I may. There was always so much going on, the weather was getting nicer, people would visit and it was essentially a 31-day-long party in my house at school.

First and foremost, as you know from my last post, March to me means Spring Break. It means Las Vegas. It means the Bahamas. It means getting tan and drinking on the beach and dancing all night long and laughing and meeting new people and making questionable decisions that I never really needed to answer for. I just feel like I became the best version of myself on Spring Break. And by the best I mean worst…but it certainly felt like the best. The words “Spring Break” evoke feelings of freedom and excitement and spontaneity… and I’m watching undergrads experience all of it through this cursed channel we call Facebook. I see them prancing around in heels, all sunkissed and smiling, margaritas in hand. And I fear, I do, that I am…missing out. Which I am. Because I’m sitting at a desk doing much less prancing than I was last year down Las Vegas Boulevard, and I’m NOT happy about it!!!!

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This post falls at a very significant time, between two specific weekends which have made my F.O.M.O. much harder for me to deal with – smack dab in the middle of the two weekends of Ultra Music Festival. And goddammit, do people post a lot of pictures/videos of Ultra! (Did I post that many? If so, I’m sorry.) I even get video Snapchats from friends featuring 10-second teasers of the awesome sets I know they’re watching. And I’ll be honest…that’s just evil. And before I go to sleep each night, I whisper all their names to myself in a sort of corrupt prayer like Arya from Game of Thrones hoping all the power in Miami goes out or someone gets a bad case of Scarlet Fever and can’t get to UMF next weekend. It’s not my fault. It’s a side effect of F.O.M.O.

Plus, on top of it all, the changing of the seasons makes me miss last year. Today is officially the first day of Spring (although in NYC it doesn’t really feel like it), and with the Spring comes so many things I want to be doing. I want to be going to baseball games or going to the park or going on boats and outdoor bars or at least wearing flip flops and the worst part of all of it is that other people are. People live in warmer places or are successfully “funemployed” or are still lucky enough to be in school and they are doing all these things…and I am missing out on them.

As post-grads and entry-level employees, this feeling was bound to hit us eventually. It’s a trapping feeling, a sadness; it’s like all you want is for your best friend to drive up to your bedroom window in a flying car and rescue you during the lowest point of your F.O.M.O. and whisk you away.

harry rescue pt 2

But that kind of magic doesn’t apply to most of us, unfortunately. And so we need to find other ways to deal with F.O.M.O. And here is my best advice as to how to get throw these months that we spend playing in traffic while others are playing…everywhere else.

1. Make yourself a short-term bucket list.

Whether it’s a “Spring Bucket List” or “Things To Do In March” document, compile some kind of list of fun things you can do to keep busy. My friends and I have a Google Doc that we’re constantly adding things to so we can try new and exciting places and activities all the time. Definitely helps prevent F.O.M.O. as you’ll be too busy having fun to think about all the better things other people are doing.

2. Stay off social media.

Easier said than done, I know, especially when many of our jobs allow us some prime Facebooking after lunch or ample time to browse our Twitter feeds during the morning commutes. But try to not go through every “SPRiNG BR3AK 20!3” album that gets posted. It’ll only make you feel sad. And fat. And pale. Also, don’t backstalk yourself and remind yourself of all the fun you were having when you were still in college. That’s even worse, because hating past-you is always harder than hating present-anyone-else.

3. Make one really stupid college-kid decision.

Simply so that when you hear some kids telling a story about all the wild and crazy stuff they did over break, you can have one reference you can drop. “Well, don’t worry, we still rage too. Like, you’ll never believe what I did last weekend….” (Insert my behavior over St. Patrick’s Day weekend. Yep.)

4. Then counteract it and do something post-grad-esque and mature.

You’ll feel pretty dumb after your #3 stupid decision, so then do something very post-grad of you. Like trying out this new fancy wine bar or buying yourself a nice new blazer. Remind yourself that being a post-grad is fun, too! You’re not funneling beers on a beach, this is true. But the YoPros go cray for a sexy young thang hitting up Happy Hour in a sleek black blazer…who could pay for her her own drinks, but he’s gonna buy yours anyway. And it’s not gonna be a Natty Light, either. It’ll be a Blue Moon. Classssssssssy.

5. Last but not least, remember that F.O.M.O. is a temporary condition.

And that if you actually went to every party, every concert, every bar, and on every trip that you thought you would “miss out on” by not attending, you would be broke, exhausted, and probably have a horrible immune system. Breathe and relax and take comfort in knowing that you will 100% have a chance to go to some event or take some trip or see some show sometime soon that other people are totally going to miss out on. And you can brag about it all you want.

Keep your head up during these undergrad F.O.M.O. moments, post-grads. While it may be hard, there are bright, shining, wonderful future experiences for those 23 and older somewhere out there waiting for us.

Day 293 -The Post-Grad Spring Break(down)

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Monday is a harsh reality every week. It’s even harsher after coming off a weekend doing some casual “spring breaking” in Miami. But I’m getting through it. Hour by hour, minute by minute, Tylenol by Tylenol. Last night I went to sleep earlier than I have in weeks. You did me good, Miami, you did me real good.

One year ago, I was planning the trip of a lifetime to Las Vegas with some of the coolest people you will ever meet; so good that ever since, we’ve only referred to ourselves as the “Vegas Crew.” We spent seven days in Sin City; took the reins and galloped down Las Vegas Boulevard at full speed, leaving nothing behind us except money we gambled away and empty bottles of Champagne. And here I am, after a mere four days in Miami, ready to put my head down and take a little nap on my keyboard.

My Post-Grad Spring Break-Down, I’m calling it. And my friends, as with any trip or event, there is going to be the good, the bad, and the ugly that comes along with it. Here’s a little bit of info on what to look out for on your PGSBD this spring, and how you can survive it better than I did.

The Good

The best thing about the Post Grad Spring Break is reuniting with your college crew, and I had it the best, because so many of my best friends are now living down in Miami. This means no expensive hotel rooms, lots of bonding, and a solid crew to roll out with every night. Plus, you don’t have to worry about “finding hot spots” to hit while you’re there, because all your friends are most likely still in-the-know about which spots to go on which nights. You’ll rage like you used to, Instagram pics from inside your favorite clubs (guilty as charged), and be able to enjoy everyone’s company again.

It’s a lot of laughs, a lot of hugs, a lot of pictures throwing up your old sorority salute, and overall my favorite thing about the PGSB.

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What else is good? I mean…you’re on vacation. Duh. Which means you can really enjoy yourself and breathe a little. You don’t have to answer e-mails, set an alarm, or limit yourself to just a drink or two at happy hour because you “have to be up early tomorrow morning.” You can let loose. Things that aren’t really appropriate in post-grad everyday life, like drinks served in fishbowls or miniskirts and heels are not only accepted but encouraged for post-grad spring breakers. Trade in your cubicle for a crop-top and put on your party pants (aka shorts) and get ready to enjoy all the good!

The Bad

…And get ready to potentially have to deal with the bad. Some common crises you may encounter:

  • Epic brain-freeze from your frozen drinks #vacationproblems
  • The inability to drink even half of what you used to in college
  • Being as pale as the walls in your office (ew)
  • “I miss you guys so much, I’m buying everyone a drink!!”
  • Opening a tab…never a good idea.
  • Not being able to nap between daytime activities and going out at night
  • Not fitting into your shorts the way you did last May
  • Feeling OLD

The Ugly

The worst of the worst usually comes after your trip is over. The hangover from the weekend, which may or may not include an actual hangover.
The ugly is the sound of your alarm on Monday morning at 6:30.
The ugly is checking your bank statement when you get into work.
The ugly is noticing your face is peeling from sunburn.
The ugly is seeing pictures of yourself on Facebook that should never have been allowed to surface.
The ugly is realizing you took a physical beating thanks to your escapades – I’m talking bruises, burns, and chipped toenail polish. The works.
The ugly is realizing you miss college and not having any responsibilities.
The ugly is knowing that you are 100% going to get sick this week because you took 0% care of yourself all weekend.
The ugly is the Breakdown after the Spring Break. The Post-Grad Spring Breakdown.

ImageMe at my desk today.

But is it worth it? Yes. It’s worth every second, every penny, every de-tagged picture and every groan of exhaustion. Getting that little taste of college again, that chance to be just a little irresponsible (or maybe very irresponsible, in some cases) is worth the week-long hangover you’ll probably endure.

So book your flights and enjoy yourself. There’s only a few years left for this kind of behavior to be even remotely appropriate, so better we get it out of our systems now, right? Happy Spring Break Month to all the college students who still have that luxury, have a good enough time for all of us post-grads. We’ll be stalking your pictures on Facebook from our cubicles as we have our Spring Breakdowns.

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Day 286 – A Guide to Kinda-Sorta Creepy Ways to Meet New People

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“No one is looking for a relationship in college. Everyone just wants to have fun.” Said everyone who couldn’t find a boyfriend while they were in school.

What I’m trying to say is that was a phrase that may have come out of my mouth quite a bit during my four years in Miami…mostly because it was true. Right? IT’S TRUE RIGHT?? IT WASN’T JUST ME?!??

Anyway, here we are, 286 days since graduation, and now I’ve been telling a lot of my friends who are still in school, “No one is really looking for a relationship right out of college. Everyone is adjusting to post-grad life and just wants to have fun.” So where do you find the ones who do want a relationship?

Young adults are flocking to the web, their phones, and more to check out not only who’s single, but who’s looking to meet up for a drink, a few dates, or a relationship. It’s not really surprising, since our generation has become completely reliant on the Internet and our smart phones for everything from food delivery to catching up on our TV shows. That and we’re all totally lazy. Let’s explore the options for the tech-friendly-romantic who just seems to be looking for love in all the wrong places.

Kinda Sorta Creepy Ways to Meet People via Technology

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I’m just kinda T.O’ed because she hasn’t sent me a full body shot yet.

Grouper

I’m listing Grouper first because I think it is so funny and so cute and such a good idea because it requires that you actually have friends to do it. Essentially, you sign up with two friends, or “wingmen” as they list it on the site, and you get matched with another group of three. For $20 each, your drinks for the night are taken care of, and you’re on this pre-arranged super fun group date. I’ve had two friends go on it already, and both said it was actually a really enjoyable time.

Also, this:

Brilliant.

Grade: A

OK Cupid

I’m going to go ahead and share with you that I created an OKCupid account a little while back, just to see what it was all about. There were definitely some good and some bad aspects to it.

Here’s the good. A lot of the guys who make profiles understand that being funny and personable is key to getting people to trust that you are normal. Even better is some of them realize that the whole concept of OKCupid, well, online dating in general, is still fairly new, so if they do message you, they’ll need to tread lightly, and feel it out. A cheese pick-up line is okay, if it’s very obvious it’s a joke. Even better is if they can reference something you like based on your profile without just being like, “Oh, you like Ryan Gosling movies? Me too. He is good.” The bad? More people on the site do not realize these things. And send creepy. ass. messages. “Mmmm gurl lovin ur pics, wanna meet up?” Um…no. Like not even a little bit.

I did go on a date with someone I met – no, it didn’t go anywhere – but he was 100% normal, a cool guy, and paid for my margaritas. Just not my type. So while it can definitely work for some people, there’s just too much room for creeps.

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Not really an OK cupid if you ask me.

Grade: C+

Tinder

Tinder is like a combination of Facemash, the original site created by Mark Zuckerburg, and that show “Next!” on MTV.  Tinder is for the laziest of the lazy, where you can just browse through pictures of anyone nearby who has the app and click ‘thumbs up’ or ‘thumbs down’ based on limited info. If two people “yes” each other, they have the option to chat via the app. It’s like shallow speed-dating! But it’s really, really entertaining. Seriously. Great for when you have some off-time at work or when you’re bored on long, drunk train rides home, Tinder allows those serious about meeting people to, well, talk seriously, and the rest of us to ask weird questions and use silly pick-up lines for fun. Something just tells me it’ll never be acceptable to say you met your boyfriend through an iPhone app, though, sorry boys.

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*Note – Because you can upload a max of 5 pictures, be aware these may not exactly represent what said Tinder match looks like. He is eliminating bad pics. A friend met up with a Tinder match at a club and he was not what he seemed. He was dubbed a “TinderFish” – Catfish, via Tinder. (Credit: Kim Z. and the JB crew for the awesome nickname.)

Grade: B+, solely for entertainment purposes

Craigslist

Okay okay hold on. I’m not suggesting anyone go browsing the personals section of Craigslist for a hot date. Just need to share one creative way two guys used Craigslist to find dates for their cousin’s wedding. The post called for two sisters or friends who were attractive and fun to join them for the Saratoga wedding, and included lots of funny pictures and silly facts about the two striking young gentlemen. Sound ridiculous? Far from. They’ve gotten 2,000 replies. Check it out.

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Wish I had thought of this for DG Semiformal.

And here’s the response:

http://digitallife.today.com/_news/2013/02/25/17087760-2-bad-boy-brothers-turn-to-craigslist-for-wedding-dates?chromedomain=todaynews

Wanna know who the girl who submitted the Journey song was? I’ll give you one guess 😉

Grade: A for those guys, D for everyone else because Craigslist can be sketchy

So dont worry, all you hopeless romantics, there is love for you out there. And if you can’t find it walking down the street, or at a bar, or through a friend, there are plenty of other ways for you to connect with someone. All you need is a charged batter, a WiFi signal, some pretty pictures, and a lot of trust in humanity. Best of luck, my friends!

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Day 280 – Why I’m Probably Not Going to my High School Reunion

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I received something in the mail a few weeks ago that really brought me back.

Back to a time of few to no responsibilities. A time when your “job” meant working four hour shifts in the mall or at the grocery store. A time when your parents chauffeured you to and from parties. A time when you were convinced your boyfriend of four-months was the man you were going to marry. A time when people were generally shittier versions of their current selves.

High School.

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Ugh, ugly thumb syndrome.

I received the invitation to my 5-year high school reunion and after some thought I think I’ve decided not to go. Why? Because there are just some people that I’m okay with never seeing again. And if life decides to have us cross paths? Okay. But it doesn’t mean I need to subject myself to that happening inside my high school cafeteria.

But for those of you who do plan on going, here’s my prediction on who you’ll be interacting with.

The Five People You’ll See at Your High School Reunion

5. The Principal/Dean/Guidance Counselor

In high school, I used to wear sunglasses on my head as an accessory almost every day (Foreshadowing that I’d be in college in Miami?), and it drove my principal crazy. I’d walk from my locker towards my homeroom and there she’d wait, in the same spot, and swipe them off my head as I walked by. “You’re inside now, Ms. Chuber,” she’d remind me. And I’d nod, wait till she was out of sight, and then push them back onto my head.

Whatever your relationship was with members of authority in high school, chances are you were way more of a douchebag then than you are now. And so you’ll probably have to deal with Past You’s annoying attitude when you interact with these individuals. Maybe you spent a lot of time in detention. Or in the Dean’s office. Or being dramatic to your guidance counselor. Whatever it was, the faculty will definitely remember you because of some particular detail. And they’re going to bring it up, at some point or another. I can hear Sister Kathleen now… “Where are your sunglasses, Kristen? Did you leave them down in Miami? Do you still wear them, whatever the weather?” Yes. Yes I do.

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4. The High School BFF

This is someone that normally, you’d love to catch up with! The girl/guy you were super close to for four years. They’re the person you went out with on the weekends, spent your free periods with planning your Sweet 16, and gossiped with about boys in adjacent bathroom stalls. Yet you two may have drifted, such is life, and years may have passed since you two have spoken. While I personally would enjoy catching up with my high school best friends, within the confines of a high school reunion, it may feel unnatural.

A few things may happen. First, you may experience what any fellow How I Met Your Mother fans will understand as “Revertigo,” where in order to make interaction normal, you revert back to the high school version of yourself. So if you two were notoriously boy crazy, the first thing you would probably ask would be, “So, what’s your guy situation right now??” You’d take MySpace style pictures and maybe even upload them to Facebook. #besties #reunited. Or maybe something came between the two of you in order to end the BFFriendship, and that event/person will be the elephant in the room for the extent of your conversation. Or maybe you’ll assume you can just pick up where you left off and maybe it’ll be much harder than you thought because one of you went through a drastic life change like giving up drinking or going brunette. There’s definitely potential for awkwardness there. So just beware.

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3. The Person Who Not-S0-Secretly Hates You

Whether or not it’s out in the open, there’s that person that you know just isn’t a fan of yours. Maybe it’s because you made fun of them in gym class for being a total weirdo or because you dated her boyfriend after they broke up “even though she said it was okay.” But by no means are you friends, and they’re definitely not trying to be.   You might try to avoid them, or maybe you’ll do the opposite, and try to be overly sweet to make up for your less than happy memories with this person. Regardless, you should probably keep an eye out, in case you’re on their hitlist.

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2. Your High School Worst Enemy

Everyone had a worst enemy in high school. The person that you absolutely could not stand. So much so, that on graduation day, you thanked your lucky stars you’d be rid of her for good. And you’ve managed to avoid her for five years. But here you are, going to your high school reunion, knowing she will be there. It’s not that you care about the drama anymore; after all, it was five years ago. But there is ZERO part of you that wants to see this person. Ever again.

And that’s okay. While most of the problems that existed between high schoolers was based on immaturity and probably just boredom, you don’t need to reach out to every person you disliked in the past and attempt to rekindle a friendship. As long as you can both be civil if and when you run into each other somewhere, that is enough. No need to force a friendship just to prove you’re not the grotsky little beotch you were in 10th grade.

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1. A Horrible Version of Yourself That You Want To Forget Forever

“I was probably the best version of myself in high school,” said no one ever. We all thought we were the coolest thing since ice pops, and let’s face it – we weren’t. I would truly love to shake High School Kristen by her shoulders, letting her giant hoop earrings swing back and forth smacking her in the face, and tell her that she’s a giant tool and to STOP. I want to say, “No, Kristen, you should NOT have a Xanga! Your future college friends are going to find it and never let you live it down!” Being back in my high school, looking at old pictures, and talking about 15 year old me is only going to remind me of how lame and obnoxious everyone was in high school. And by everyone I mean primarily myself.

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So I don’t think I’ll be attending my high school reunion this time around.

I’d rather catch up like normal people. And grab a coffee with someone I recently reconnected with on Facebook. Or get a big group together and go to a bar. And chat about the latest episode of the Bachelor or how hot that guy I dumped in 12th grade got and whether or not the 10th grade English teacher ever hooked up with a student or, my favorite, how awkward our past selves were. And I don’t think I need to pay $50 and feel awkward for 3 hours in order to reunite with people from my past.

Plus, thanks to social media, it’s really easy to reach out and get back in touch with people. If and when I want to reconnect with some friends from the “old days,” its nice to know that everyone is just a Facebook message, a Tweet, a text, or an e-mail away. With the technology available to us, reunions aren’t really necessary anymore. In fact, we probably already know a lot about what everyone has been up to thanks to that technology. I’ve seen your new apartment on Instagram, saw your Tweet about working for Goldman Sachs, and noticed you updated your Facebook to include NYU Medical School under your Education. 

Regardless, I hope everyone has fun. And I’ll strongly consider attention The Mary Louis Academy’s 10-year reunion in 2018 🙂

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The girls who made high school a little less crappy. June 1, 2008.

Day 275 – Your Single Best Valentine’s Day Ever

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Happy Valentines Day Everyone!

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…But is it really happy?

For the past few days, all I’ve been seeing all over social media is single girls complaining about their lack of Valentines. I get it. It’s nice to have someone to buy you presents and take you out to dinner and shower you with love and kisses and chocolates and things that you can take pictures of and upload to Facebook to make everyone else jealous of you. But hey. I wish I had that every day, not just Valentine’s Day. So what’s the big deal about today? WHY do single girls make such a big deal about this stupid, lonely, cold, February day???

I was one of you not too long ago. But not anymore, ladies. Let this be the year you have a great Valentine’s Day because you’re single. Not even though you’re single. Here are some ways to make your Valentine’s Day the Single Best Valentine’s Day Ever.

5. List the People You Really Love

Remind yourself of all those you care about on this special day that my hibachi chef the other night refers to as “Love Day.” Here’s my list:

The guy in the deli who knows my coffee order when I walk in. He just warms my heart (and the rest of me….cause coffee is hot….get it…)
The sexy LIRR conductor who wished me a Happy Valentine’s Day today and winked at me.
My dad (unless I don’t come home to flowers today then he’s scratched from da list…sorry Daddy)
Ryan Gosling (“If I met Ryan Gosling in a bar….I’d make out with him”)
My dog. Actually all dogs. Woof.
The bartender who will give me a free drink tonight (Don’t know who you are yet but I know we’ll be meeting soon)
Jon Snow

Aww, Guys, Jon got me a puppy for Valentine's Day!

Aww, Guys, Jon got me a puppy for Valentine’s Day!

4. Make Fun of Your Exes

I want to write a petition to rename Valentine’s Day “Make Fun of Your Exes” day. You know there is a ex-boyfriend or ex-something in your life that has gained weight, is dating a not-so-cute girl, lost his job, got a bad haircut…etc. Make fun of him today. Celebrate being better off without him. Wouldn’t you rather be single than still dating him??? If he liked it, then he should’ve put a ring on it.

Let it out. Enjoy yourself. You deserve it.

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3. Enjoy the Lazy Night You’ve Been Dying to Have

I don’t know about you, but a lot of the time, people will ask me to hang out and I feel obliged to go, even though what I really want to do is lay in bed, drink wine, eat microwavable food, turn my phone off, and just have a night to myself. If you have no other plans and promise not to watch romance flicks, have a lazy night in tonight. Order chinese and watch an intense action flick with your dog. Skip the gym, wear sweatpants and no makeup, and don’t worry about impressing anyone (except your mom who never thought you’d be able to finish the entire order of lo mein by yourself).

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2. Snag Single Dudes

Believe me when I say this is the best night to go out with all your girlfriends. Why? Because every guy you meet will be single. If he’s not, he’ll be out with his girlfriend. This is your chance to find your date for Valentine’s Day 2014. So get all dressed up, do some single-mingling tonight, have an awesome night, and make all your friends who are having boring nights with their boyfriends’ jealous.

*Warning* – Some guys may be out because they’re looking for “desperate, single girls alone on Valentine’s Day.” Be one step ahead of the game. Work them for all their wallets are worth and dip out while you’re ahead. #winning

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And most importantly…

1. Love Yourself

If this day is all about love, why not love the most important person in your life? Yourself! Be as selfish as possible. Buy yourself lingerie. Splurge on a manicure or that new lipstick you’ve been eyeing. Take a bubble bath. Drink your favorite wine. Hell, drink a margarita if that’s what you prefer. YOU DO YOU, BABY GIRL.

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Enjoy Valentine’s Day if you have a date tonight. Enjoy it more if you don’t. This day of love doesn’t mean you need to be in a committed relationship. Celebrate whatever it is that you love most. Whether that’s food, friends, wine, relaxation, partying, being single, or your boyfriend.

And just remember, no matter how bad today may seem, it could be worse. You could be Taylor Swift.

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Also, this. Because I just had to.