Posts in Diary
EOD

Tonight I had to join a 9PM call with one of our LA creative teams. I live in a world where EOD means nothing without a time zone attached to it… New York, LA, Tel Aviv...occasionally a fake-out far away city like Atlanta trying to trick me.

It was a creative call, an update from a writers room currently in progress, which meant my role in the call was “extra set of ears." But generally I’m happy to be easygoing about a 9PM call just to reiterate that I’m Really Involved. From my perspective, taking one evening call makes up for being kind of late for about three days. It shouldn't matter because it’s “ok to be late” (I don’t believe you) and "no really it’s fine we’re actually a super cool start up who cares about you" (there’s no way that’s just cool) and you get so confused and your head hurts so you just say fuck it and show up late a fourth day, smelling like nice dry shampoo, clutching an iced latte like the Olsen Twin: The Later Years that you are.

During the call I did some planks and then I did some downward dogs for a while and then I became horrified with how much hair is on my bedroom floor, so I got up and swept it. It was easier to focus while I was moving around. Sometimes I think making my body be all normal all day is exhausting, I feel like I’m constantly wanting to suddenly just lie down on the floor while I'm talking to a colleague, or sit cross-legged on my office chair. It's so hard for me to smile through an entire conversation with no breaks, especially if it's particularly joyous one. My natural expression is mild concern. My face hurts. It's not like I'm always about to burst into an unprofessionally choreographed dance, but I am so conscious of my body. In fourth grade, someone told me to "sit up straight, hon" and I have thought about it every day of my life since then. “My back feels straight. But am I looking down too much? I should be better about making eye contact. Lean back. Wait, whoa, what if I overcorrect and my whole body starts bending in the entirely opposite direction? Is that as hilarious as I feel like it is? Is that my legacy?” etc.

We ended the call with my boss saying, “Ok I really have to go- I’m at Trader Joe’s and my wife is gonna be pissed if I don’t get what we needed before it closes so I’m gonna lose you in a second, it’s super time sensitive I need to buy 5 frozen pizzas but I need them to all be called a different word for pizza (he didn't say that last part) I’m going down the-e esca- -es- cala- tor… -ow...

And with that... he was gone. 

DiaryRoseEOD, job Comment
Rose's Favorite Things: 2017

There's an amazing episode of 30 Rock where Liz Lemon gets smashed on a plane and thinks she's sitting next to Oprah. When she shows up at work, she's full of wonder over her Oprah encounter and enthusiastically shares a list of Oprah's favorite things (sweater capes, saltwater taffy and Chinese checkers.)

We've reached the end of 2017, kiddos. And, look, I know that I'm nowhere near as cool as Oprah. But I do have Favorite Things the way her majesty does. So I'd like to present you with Rose's Favorite Things, 2017 edition.

1) The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel: Where to even start. I have been a Gilmore Girls fan since the very beginning. The characters were vivid and loveable, the stakes relatively low, and the dialogue came at warp speed (something I aspire to to this day.) So I was nervous when I pressed play on the pilot of MMM, Amy Sherman Palladino's new show. Would this be another Bunheads (Amy SP's last show)? Inoffensive, but also watered down and meh? I crossed my fingers and prayed to the God of Amazon Prime that things would be different.

8 hours later, I emerged from a MMM haze, having watched every episode without getting up once. I didn't even need to go to the bathroom, or eat. Such is the magic of MMM. Amy SP's dialogue is BACK, along with beautiful production design and incredible performances by Rachel Brosnahan and ALEX BORSTEIN. Alex Borstein, who was previously in the running for the role of Sookie in GG and was relegated to a small part in the GG pilot playing a bitchy harpist. The voice of family guy's Lois. The human behind the problematic at best Ms Swan. Beloved by all, or at least, by most.

For those who aren't familiar, MMM is about a housewife who lives on the Upper West Side in the late 1950s. She's sharp, and funny, and seemingly has the perfect life. Until her life falls apart (as life is wont to do) and she turns to standup comedy to deal.

Watch it. Just... watch it.

Available on Amazon Prime Video

mrsmaisel.jpg

2) Old people with iPads: I just love them. It's all index fingers and frustration.

3) Activated charcoal: How could I not love something that both whitens your teeth AND may save you from dying after a drug overdose or a poisoning? What CAN'T this chalky black powder do? It took a little bit of practice to use this regularly without coating my bathroom in a thin layer of dust, but it's worth it. Though I don't suggest using it instead of normal toothpaste, adding it as a first step has done wonders for my teeth. And the fact that I keep using it is a real testament to its powers because I am normally extremely bored by dentalcare and it's has been a struggle to even make myself just floss 'n brush every single day of my life so far.

My pick: It doesn't seem to have a brand name, which is kinda shady, huh. Amazon 100% Natural Teeth Whitening Powder.

4) Sweetgreen's Curry Cauliflower bowl: There is nothing more enticing to a boring, one-dimensional girl than a Sweetgreen salad. Fresh ingredients, a cool logo, convenience and a price just north of reasonable. What more could you want?!

I do try to keep myself in a strict, make-my-lunches-at-home-on-Sundays rhythm but when I stray, it's usually for Sweetgreen. With just a few taps (#applife) I can order this bowl full of quinoa and chickpeas and goddamn magical fairydust, and with just a few more, I can choose a convenient pickup time AND request that the raisins be taken out. Because ew.

Plus, I get a free bowl on my birthday. So it practically pays for itself.

Sweetgreen Curry Cauliflower Bowl, picture courtesy of Sweetgreen  http://www.sweetgreen.com/

Sweetgreen Curry Cauliflower Bowl, picture courtesy of Sweetgreen
http://www.sweetgreen.com/

5) Fyre Festival: The Fyre Festival debacle happened in May of this year. It was all my May needed. Fyre Festival is, of course, the biggest disaster of a luxury music festival, conceived by a spoiled man child, presumably while he was in some designer-drug addled state. Billy McFarland had previously started other super shady, decidedly not profitable, unnecessary ventures so when the festival did collapse in on itself, it actually made a lot of sense. But the level on which the festival failed was something of legend.  It was funded with fake money and literally no real plan. When guests arrived on the "private Caribbean island" there were not enough bathrooms, or food. There was trash all over. Many of the artists weren't paid and, thus, did not show up. And once everyone figured out what was happening, the rush to get on a plane off the island caused widespread panic. I know that my morbid obsession with Fyre Festival does not really reflect well on me. And I have to live with that every day. But there is something about the privileged white man hubris resulting in such epic failure feels like the teeniest bit of vindication in an otherwise difficult year for anyone who has to work for anything. If, like me, you can't look away from this particular car crash, you can read about the infuriatingly vague and obnoxious investor deck here.

fyre_INLINE.jpg

The only thing that is decidedly not funny is the fate of those who made the mistake of signing on to work for the festival- the vast majority of whom were incredibly smart/qualified and given ZERO time or resources to do their jobs. You can listen to the founder tell his employees that they aren't getting paid. I'll just go ahead and say it: fuck this guy (FWIW, he's been arrested since.)

6) Save The Dates (interactive web series): Full disclosure: this is a show that uses our (Eko's) platform for interactive video. But here's the thing- I am obsessed with this show. And I'm not at all contractually obligated to tell you this. In fact, my coworkers tease me about how funny I find this. But it's brilliant. You follow Chelsea on a blind date, with one of four guys. You make choices for the guys she's dating and it's so weird and so funny. There are three episodes, but hours of material if you replay (and I did)(and you should.) Thanks to the hilarious guys behind Cook St Productions, this has been such an awesome contribution to my year.

Screen Shot 2017-12-31 at 1.55.47 PM.png

Save The Dates is available on the Eko platform (cough website cough)

7) Albert Finance: I love a good app. We carry around these hunks of aluminum and glass and we just wait for it to vibrate all day so we can feel something... why not try to harness its powers for good? Disclaimer: make no mistake, many finance and productivity apps claim to save you tons of time, and I have found this to be true almost never. Almost all of them require upkeep and general vigilance from the user in order to work properly. But they just make everything so much more fun.

Albert is like a beautiful (read: flat UI) slightly different version of the Mint app. Not only does it give you pretty graphics telling you you paid too much for Lyfts but came in under budget on your groceries, it regularly prompts you to complete short exercises that allow you to review your financial health and checks that it's interpreting data from your linked accounts correctly. Yes, you do have to link your bank accounts to get the full experience, but don't even stress about it, the government already has all of your info. That ship has circumnavigated the globe many times at this point.

Albert also analyzes your income and spending habits every day and sets aside small amounts of money you can safely save. It saves money FOR YOU but only when you can definitely afford it.

My favorite part of Albert is what they call "Albert Genius". For as little as $5 a month (you choose what you pay!) you can text their team of financial advisors PRETTY MUCH ANY MONEY QUESTION and they'll give you objective answers, colored with some mild guidance and suggestions, personalized based on your actual financial circumstances. They've already helped me through my student loan refi and gave me advice on how to start investing.

This app is not for those who have anything more than simple personal finance questions but for the price it's a little bit insane. I probably shouldn't even be writing about it, there's no way they won't start charging more once word gets out. We never had this talk.

Albert is available to download on the App Store, currently only available for iPhone.

albert_3.png

8) SmittenKitchen.comDeb. Deb, Deb, Deb. How is it that you have such a perfect internet presence and yet I don't resent you? This cooking blog, written by Deb Perelman, has been around for a while now, so the fact that it's one my 2017 favorite things only means that my love for Smitten Kitchen has some serious lasting power. I mean, she bills it as "Fearless cooking from a tiny kitchen in New York City." I live in New York! I have a tiny kitchen! I like to take pictures of my food like any red-blooded Millenial! 

This is a love that afflicts all of the Seyfried women.  And most of her recipes are of the simple and delicious variety- bitch mixes pretty much anything with an egg and fries it and brains explode around the interweb. Broccoli? Zucchini? Old newspaper? You name it, she's frittered it.

Cauliflower Feta Fritters, picture courtesy of Smitten Kitchen https://smittenkitchen.com/2012/12/cauliflower-feta-fritters-with-pomegranate/

Cauliflower Feta Fritters, picture courtesy of Smitten Kitchen
https://smittenkitchen.com/2012/12/cauliflower-feta-fritters-with-pomegranate/

9) Laser hair removal: Get a Groupon. Suck it up. You'll resent every single time you have to go for a session (it takes 6-9 sessions to see permanent results) and you'll still end up thanking me. I was a waxer for years, which is an exercise in futility- a nice lady covers you in hot wax and RIPS IT OFF WTF in the opposite direction of how your hair grows. You go home red and sore and wake up the next morning to ingrown hairs. Wait six weeks, repeat. Laser hair removal is way less painful, and the FDA hasn't discovered yet what horrible side effects it has later on in life (score), and it works (hand to god). Not convinced? Let's say you spend $80 every six weeks for waxing, from ages 20 to 60. That's a lifetime cost of almost $30K and it's a miserable existence. For the same area, laser would cost you $1800 total at full price. But also Groupon! And it's permanent. Do it do it do it and then come back and tell me I'm right because I'll never stop wanting to hear that.

10) HQ Trivia: This is one of those fleeting, beautiful 2017 loves that I am positive will not hold it's place in the line-up particularly far into 2018. If you haven't been indoctrinated yet, basically, it's an app that's a live trivia game, that happens twice a day (3pm/9pm). 12 questions, progressively harder, and if you get them all right you win (or split) the pot, which is usually around $2K. At the time of writing, I have not won a game of HQ Trivia, but I haven't yet been discouraged enough to  NOT try to play when I'm free and the reminder on my phone goes off. It's bizarre to see the moment each afternoon when my entire start-up-y office stops what they're doing and picks up their phone, eyes glazed over until they miss a question and are eliminated (I've only ever made it to question 7.)  The regular host is an mysteriously popular guy named Scott Rogowsky, who has grown on me, I guess. Want some extra drama? Here's a super insane article about the HQ CEO being a crazy asshole to a reporter. for actually no reason. 

11) BECs: There are very few things that make me happier than a bacon egg and cheese sandwich on Sunday morning that I can eat in bed while I watch SNL from the night before.

12) The Onion: The Onion has been on its game this year. Did you know that it's been around since 1988? That's just shy of 30 years old. Way to go, The Onion. The current political climate has obviously provided lots of Onion fodder, but they do a great job of reporting on the equally important if slightly smaller news stories, such as this, which I laughed at for about 10 straight minutes. Honorable mentions to Reductress and AboveAverage.

13) My Favorite Murder: Oh my god ok. This podcast has popped up on the scene in the last couple of years and amassed an enormous following for good reason. Basically, it's two comedian friends (Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark) telling true crime stories. Serial killers, one off-ers, family killers, child killers, buzz killers, you name it. And somehow they make it hilarious and entertaining but still respectful and (duh) disapproving. Fans are called Murderinos, and they have multiple catch phrases from episodes, among them "Stay Sexy, Don't Get Murdered" and "You're In A Cult. Call Your Dad." This is prime commute listening, friends. Also, if I die and you find Wikipedia articles about murder in my browser history, this is what was happening there.

myfavoritemurder.jpg

My Favorite Murder can be downloaded wherever you get your podcasts.

14) Levain cookies: The cronut was a disappointment and I don't need a rainbow colored bagel. But as far as trendy NYC foods go, Levain cookies absolutely live up to the hype. When I have the occasional day off of work, I'll make the journey up to the UWS just for these. They weigh about as much as a medium-sized cat and now that they opened a second location, there is never much of a line.

levain.png

AND FINALLY... RAPID FIRE ROUND

Favorite artists: Sigrid, Matt Maeson, Astrid S, Greta Isaac, Oh Wonder, Phoebe Ryan, POWERS
Favorite first date spot: Doris (Bed Stuy)
Favorite place to write: Tom and Jerry's (NoHo)
Favorite workout: Boxing at Church Street Boxing Gym (TriBeCa)
Favorite movie: The Shape of Water
Favorite book: Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero

 

Diary, ReviewsRose
Med check

It's amazing how, even after 11 years have passed, I still remember where all the speed traps are in my hometown. I can't remember to pick up my laundry but I know exactly where in suburban Philly I need to pump the brakes, exactly where the cop is parked and when it's safe to pick up speed again.

Back in Philadelphia for an appointment with my psychiatrist this morning. I took the train back last night after work. As usual, with the first few snows in New York City, everything was beautiful, people were acting batshit crazy and Penn Station was a madhouse.

Woke up on the early side this morning, completely disoriented. My 3 year old nephew has been sleeping in my brother's room so my assigned bed for the time I'm home is my nephew's. I woke up in a room full of toys and old Halloween candy and books with a railing on my twin bed. It felt like a cheery hospital room, like I was terminally ill and some well meaning teenager trying to get into an Ivy League school had volunteered to deck my room out to make my last days more comfortable. Like I was someone's Eagle Scout project.

Today's crazy doc appointment was just a check-in. I was overdue for a visit, the last time I had seen my doctor was two years ago, when I was having severe panic attacks while I tried to quit a toxic job and replace it with literally any other job. We had a nightmare of an October 2015, where we tried to adjust my meds multiple times and I felt worse and worse, almost to the point of me refusing to get out of bed (I always thought that was such a luxury, people who were so depressed that they couldn't get out of bed and then actually didn't get out of bed. I've been that depressed before, multiple times, but I have to feed myself so sucking it up was my only option.) Finally, we had gotten my meds to a place where I've been doing really well for a while now. All we had to discuss this appointment was 1) minor complaints (one of my meds has made me gain a particularly stubborn 8 pounds, one of the pills I take is almost impossible to split in half per my prescription) and 2) needing him to write me new prescriptions for the same meds. Also, more Xanax.

After a whopping 15 minutes, I handed him a check for $200 for his time, which I instinctually clutched a little two tightly as I offered it to him. But he tugged a bit and I parted with it.

I'll be home for a full 10 days, which might actually be the longest I've been home since I moved out in 2007. I have a couple more days of working from home before I can unplug, but will do it from my nephew's bedroom with no makeup on and maybe eat his Halloween candy for professional sustenance.

DiaryRose
DJ Celery Flakez

Watching the episode of The Office where Michael steps on his George Foreman grill and burns his foot while I take pictures of receipts to get money back on one of my new productivity apps I've installed on my Goodyear Blimp of a phone.

Each one of these 23 magical appz make my life so much easier if you can ignore the fact that there are 23 of them and they all require significant amounts of time and effort from me to be worth whatever their gimmick is. Which I guess I can for now.

Had to return things to the grocery store on my way home from work. I accidentally grabbed dried celery flakes instead of parsley (what the fudge are celery flakes used for? ew ew ew ew ew ew ew) Also I accidentally bought nutmeg when I already had nutmeg. ("MWAHAHA oh Rose, you're so wacky!" - you, probably)

They asked me zero questions, didn't check whether or not they had been opened and just gave me a fistful of cash back. This was an interesting development.

TBH, I'm having one of those days where my own life stuff is just unbearably boring to me.

You're dismissed.

DiaryRose
What is your favorite aspect about this blog?!

This morning, someone set off a homemade pipe bomb in the subway tunnel between Port Authority and Times Square. 

No one died, thank god, and only a couple of people were injured. But it shut down the entire western artery of Manhattan. And as if we needed another reminder, Brooklyn is at the mercy of our big island neighbor... all of the trains in Brooklyn slowed to a crawl, then a halt.

I stood on the platform at Nostrand for over an hour. Finally, I realized that, best case scenario, I would get on a train and still not get to work for another hour. So I turned my ass around and walked back to my house to #WFH, and proceeded to have the most productive work day I've had in weeks. So I'm not going to SAY that an act of terror only succeeded in me having an opportunity to contribute more to the world around me but hey if you want to connect those particular dots I'm not going to stop you.

I have one more week of in-office, normal work days before I go back to Philly for 10 DAYS. 10. I'm not sure, but this might be the longest amount of time I've stayed in my childhood home since I left for college a billion years ago.

True Life: I still have intense anxiety about going home.

There's nothing there that's so bad. I love seeing my family, I love being fed fo' free, I love getting out of the city every once in a while. But there's something weirdly triggering for me in being in the place where I was so scared and defiant and insecure and obsessive for sooo many years. It makes me feel scared and defiant and insecure and obsessive, only now I'm an adult. And this is it. And I am me now. So I have to constantly remind myself that New York City Rose accepted herself (mostly) as-is years ago and this is just latent ennui that's been fermenting in the damp unfinished basement where I used to sleep. That basement...with some paint on the floors and walls, and a bed, and various Ikea accoutrements, that basement was a totally respectable stand-in for a first apartment and you better believe that's how I thought of it.

Today some guy on OKC asked me "What's your favorite aspect about the city?" Yikes.

 

DiaryRose
MotherWHAT

I'm the stressiest.

There are two kinds of workplace stress I have to deal with. The most common kind is the general, insane amount of work stress. The other kind is pretty rare but it's the worst feeling in the word- and that is "fuck. I totally made a mistake and have to admit it to my supervisor whom I would rather have think I am a faultless genius" stress.

It's the best when they both pop up together, on a Sunday night. Because honestly, I was sleeping TOO well over the last couple of weeks.

I mentioned to my office friend that I have been getting daily tension headaches accompanied by a big knot in my shoulder. Hand to god, this girl is firmly grounded in reality, super smart and reasonable. So imagine my surprise when she suggests an HERBAL REMEDY. Take a second and get the eye-rolls out of your system. I know. Just, I know. Shh.

It's called "motherwort" and according to Kate, it makes your body feel relaxed and a little euphoric and it's definitely not weed.

I'm not sure if it was straight up placebo affect or what but she gave me a cup of water with a  couple of drops of motherwort (because sometimes herbs can exist as liquids, I'm no chemist) and let me tell you- it was some crazy witchery. I just sort of sat at my desk quietly for about twenty minutes and felt my shoulder un-cramp and my face relax (when I get my headaches the front of my face actually scrunches up which does wonders for my resting bitch face.)

This weekend was the first snow of the season. I stayed in bed most of yesterday and watched an insane amount of stand-up. Definitely want to call out Deon Cole's episode of The Stand-ups on Netflix. I don't remember the last time I laughed that hard. Also watched Michelle's Wolf's HBO special which was amazing in a completely different way. Bitches be hilarious.

I feel like it's inevitable that I try stand-up. Like in my brain, it's only a matter of time and I'm just waiting for some sort of external sign that the universe is ready for me to go for it. It'll likely come around age 48 and it will definitely be an utter disaster. But it's bound to happen. I'm not sure whether I should encourage you guys to stick around for it or to start running now.

DiaryRose
Mad Early

I'm trying out signing my work emails with "Cheers,". I'm going for kind of a dignified, "You should know I'm going out of my way to write you this email but hey I'm happy to do it, because I'm just that kind of girl" kind of vibe. So naturally, I thought "England. Bingo."

To be honest it's not really working for me. it doesn't feel right. Last time I checked, since I started my job in 2015, I had sent some 4,000 + emails (and yes, I check. I like knowing my stats). For a while I was using "Best," which now that I'm thinking about it also feels very British. I try not to use "Thank you" to end my emails, because then I get into the habit of saying "Thank you" even when the email was just to provide information and there is nothing to thank anyone for.

If I look to my higher up colleagues from over the years, I should just omit the closing entirely. Don't even sign my name. In fact, don't even address it. And spell a few words incorrectly. If I'm feeling really feisty I could even put the question as the subject line and leave the body of the email completely naked. But I know you have to earn that level of not giving a fuck.

Which brings me to my Text Of The Day (heretofore known as the "TOTD", in case this becomes a bit):

Time: 9:00 PM EST
From: <Not saved in my phone>
Message: Do you like getting head

Context: (oh, do you need context? FINE) I went to Union Pool a couple of months ago with Julie (sister), as you do. A guy came up and hit on me. He got my number, we had coffee once, which was decent. He asked me to hang out a couple of days later, on a Saturday at 9PM. Less than an hour before I was supposed to meet him, he blew me off. When I gave him a hard time (because nope.) his response was "My bad. <five minute pause> It's still mad early though."

Now I have to give him credit for the "mad early" thing because it was hilarious in that not on purpose way and now it's how my friends and I refer to bullshit non-excuses people give for things (i.e., "Yo did you eat all of my cereal?" "My bad. It's still mad early though.")

But that was that, until today. Two months later. A Thursday evening. "Do you like getting head" A text like this pisses me off because there are SO MANY HILARIOUS AND WTF-ISH THINGS I WANT TO RESPOND but I can't on principle because any response would be acknowledging that his non-question was something you can text someone you're not dating at all and it's nooootttttttttt.

I don't know what he wants but I'm 100% not interested. I wasn't cool with you flaking on me, but I absolutely will NOT tolerate someone denying me an opportunity to say something snarky.

DiaryRose
Sew Annoyed

I got back from Thanksgiving in Philly yesterday afternoon. The train ride back was full but not packed, we got a little bit of a lead on the crazy rush back to New York.

I'm trying to teach myself how to sew on a 1964 Singer machine that my neighbor gifted me in 2010. Over the last seven years, I've lugged it from apartment to apartment without ever really even examining it closely. It's a beast, probably 20 pounds, if we're not counting the weight of my stubbornness, which adds at least a few more. Two years ago, in a burst of DIY optimism/delusion I had a friend teach me how to thread it. Now that a full seven have passed, I figured it was time to actually put stitches in fabric. I'd like to sew something by 2028.

This time I got a full hour and a half of practice (read: sewing circles into pieces of paper) before the bobbin ran out of thread. Another hour was spent trying and failing to use the machine to rewind it, then when I turned it on its side, a teeny tiny piece fell off, which apparently was not decorative. Two more hours were spent trying to fix it using whatever internet results I could scrape together for a 53 year old sewing machine (read: sparse, and mostly erroneous). Finally I gave up, and sent pictures of the mess I made to a repair place in Queens along with a pleading and hopefully charmingly email.

Then I made a bunch of grumpy pasta* to eat in the sweatpants I had never changed out of from last night's zzzs.

Silver lining (no pun intended): the actual sewing part was super fun, before the machine breaking part and the banging of heads against walls. Very much hoping that with this skill I'll finally be able to start making my own clothing, and thus make progress towards my lifelong dream of becoming the third Olsen triplet (that's how triplets work, yeah?) Already working on subsisting on just cigarette smoke and my lost childhood, and sucking in my cheeks so my face looks hollow while thinking about upsetting things when people take pictures of me (read: poverty, being a size 6,  Lindsay Lohan's accent)

*pasta made and eaten defiantly, whilst grumpy

 

DiaryRose
Celebrate Your Holidays Like Rose

You guys haven't lived until you've done the holidays the way I do them!

Valentine's Day: Snuggle up with someone you like enough for now and hatewatch the Sex and the City episode where Carrie judges bisexuals

Halloween: Janky haunted house: get high in the afternoon and go to Hollister. Don't wear a costume, be in bed by 9.

Thanksgiving: Help with the cooking, then Skype your extended family in Texas and casually bring up abortion.

Christmas: Wear slouchy sweaters that are not as photogenic as you wish they were. Spend the time between Christmas and New Years having small panic attacks in your childhood bedroom. Watch old episodes of What Not To Wear with your family and gossip about how apparently Stacey and Clinton hate each other now.

DiaryRose
Self Care

It may come as a surprise to you, but my normal reaction to any basic girl mantras is an aggressive, face pulling eye roll. "Nothing tastes as good as being thin feels", "Dance like nobody's watching". Up until recently, the idea of "self care" was relegated to that category, buzzy terms that had no place in my life.

Beside finding the term très crunchy, it's alway felt like code for expensive facials where they extract both the gunk and the evil spirits of frugality from your pores, or yoga retreats where you pay a premium to pretend to be poor in a distant locale. The idea of taking care of yourself has always felt both fascinating, and financially irresponsible to me.

One of my favorite articles of all time to make fun of, which is a high honor, is this article from Elle about Amanda Chantal Bacon, the founder/owner of LA-based Moon Juice. Moon Juice is a store that purveys powders and liquids and what I assume are boxes of curated air that strike me as the health food equivalent of the Emporer's snazzy wardrobe. Amanda Chantal Bacon is its inappropriately named HBIC.

The article begins as follows:

"I usually wake up at 6:30am, and start with some Kundalini meditation and a 23-minute breath set—along with a copper cup of silver needle and calendula tea—before my son Rohan wakes."

It then proceeds to recount a full day of Baconing. Everything she puts in to her body is raw, obscure and boosts things I didn't know were in the peril of neglect- activated cashews support her brain chemistry, bee pollen feeds hormone production, quinton shots provide mineralization.

The article was quickly followed up by this gem of a Jezebel follow up.

I'm not sure if Elizabeth Gilbert ever actually used the term "self care" in Eat Pray Love, her 2006 memoir wherein her life falls apart and she responds by traveling around the world to find herself but I will denounce the book to anyone who will listen.

I can't help it. I find myself resenting the luxury of large chunks of time off of work to focus on your spiritual health. I am peeved (and, let's face it, a little jealous) about your doting husband who provides a 24/7 emotional safety net. I scoff over your regular acupuncture appointments and your insistence that you actually really enjoy your electively gluten-free diet.

These examples of excessively Instagramable "self care" are at face value harmless and hilarious, but at their worst, can be excuses for not even trying to work on yourself. They can make you feel like self care is always over the top and intimidating  and that it's easier to keep rolling along with the status quo.

I've been at this job for two years now. My first project was a monster, it required months of working really hard to finish it on time for a round of user testing. The Friday before the Monday tests, to my chagrin, there were still open bugs and assets that needed to be reviewed and implemented. Not sure how we were going to make the deadline, I begged the developer, Scotty, to come in and work with me on that Sunday.

I'll always remember being curled up on one of the couches at the office, shoes off, squinting at my computer screen. Scotty sat next to me, his fingers flying across the keyboard. Scotty is a few years younger than me, really talented and liked by every single person in the office. I can't remember what exactly we were talking about while we worked, but I said something about how I could spin some status email to our Israel office to make it sound better than the reality of the situation. His reaction, without any judgement, was just "I don't know. I try to be really truthful. It's important to me that I'm always at least trying to do the right thing."

This was a year and a half ago.

I remember at the time immediately feeling kind of stung. Like I had suggested we rob a bank and he was oh-so-gently gently reminding me that it was a felony and that it may not be the BEST idea I've ever had.

A couple of weeks ago, a close friend of mine had something really unexpectedly rough happen to her. I found out via text while at work, as I was looking over Scotty's shoulder (unabashedly back seat coding) as we rushed to fix something broken in one of the project. It stopped me in my tracks.

Later that night, my phone lit up with a text from Scotty. "How's your friend? If you ever need to talk about anything, just let me know."

This time, his good person-ness didn't immediately result in me feeling embarrassed and flawed. Or at least, not embarrassed. It just made me feel like I wanted to be better. Things over the last month or two have started slipping into better focus. It's becoming clear that my frustration and disgust with celebrity lifestyle preaching, while fair enough (and SO fun) is not actually helping anyone.

It's so easy to prioritize survival as you make your way in New York City. Throughout my 20s, my job has come first for the very simple reason that I need to pay my rent, and if the job goes away, it sets off a domino sequence of destruction: of stress, exhaustion and constant panic mode. I've eschewed the idea of active self care up until recently because I have no interest in drinking candeluna tea and I can't afford to hang out in a sensory deprivation tank.

For now, I want to try to make bettering myself a priority, for myself and for everyone around me and I can't pretend that it's impossible for me anymore. I don't need to belong to Equinox or study Reiki, there are other real actions I can take. I can drink less. I can make a point of being honest. I can be better about flossing. I can try to figure out who I am outside of my job.

I can give myself credit for the things I do well, and look at the places where I struggle with hope instead of stubborn defensiveness. I can forgive myself when I screw up and keep working.

And if all else fails I heard that Kim Kardashian is using healing crystals to get over that time she was robbed at gunpoint.

DiaryRose
Scratch

Sitting in my jeggings in our peaceful, tidy living room. Just made chocolate chip cookies from scratch, with cinnamon, marshmallows and a little bit of cayenne pepper. If you scratch your screen right here you can smell what I'm smelling. I'll wait while you orgasm.

Ok. Whew.

I've had the recipe for cookies etched on my brain since I was 8 years old, when I was the owner/operator of "Bon Mo Desserts". From age 8 to 15 I baked cookies, cakes and pies in our kitchen and sold them, at first to just our neighborhood, then, after years of hard work and cashing in on my cute kid factor, to an area very slightly bigger than our neighborhood. Crazily enough that's how I made enough money to take my mom on vacation to Jamaica, and buy my very first computer, which was gray and kind of lumpy and heavy and took up half of my room.

I was SO proud of that computer. It was the ultimate status symbol for a middle schooler in 2001, unless you weren't me, in which case status would have looked more like a Juicy Couture track suit. The desktop featured a beautifully generic picture of a Caribbean beach, courtesy of Windows 98. I can't for the life of me remember what I did on that computer besides obsessively send instant messages to people I already spent 6 hours a day with.

I've come a long way from typing things into a text box for other people to read.

DiaryRose
Sunday Morning Live

Having one of those sweet Sunday mornings where I put SNL in one tab and ignore it while I write to you in a different tab.

I'm thinking maybe it's time I get some curtains... there's a family that moved into the brownstone across from my window and I've been doing a lot of getting dressed in a strategic location in my room so you can't see me through the two huge windows in my room. They moved in a year ago.

DiaryRose
Pinterested

Guys. I had an interaction the other day that really wigged me out. To be fair, this happens a lot. And it's almost never something that would bother a normal, well adjusted person. But lemme share this one.

I was sitting in the back at work, eating some free work grapes (which incidentally taste better) and chatting with one of my coworkers. One of my medium bosses came back to ask me about some reference moodboards we had sent a designer doing some work for me. We ended up talking about Pinterest- who uses it and why.

I casually said something along the lines of "I mean I'm not an active user but I have my dream wedding board like anyone else." and medium boss looked at me like his head had actually exploded and his eyes were just sort of dangling in space.

"I NEVER would've thought that you have a wedding board." My coworker chimed in "Me neither. That's crazy." When I asked them why, she said "I dunno, I just wouldn't."

And that's it. That was the entire exchange. But it has stayyyyyyyyed with me. I felt weirdly defensive, and a little proud but a little offended and now I keep thinking about it. Because to me it feels like the most natural thing in the world to have a dream wedding board where I can hoard pictures of geode cakes and succulent bouquets and vintage lace wedding dresses that would look terrible on someone my height. And I absolutely have an idea of what I would want my engagement ring to look like, if I ever decide to get married (sparkly, doesn't turn my finger green). There will be no mason jars and very little extended family.

Funny when you get a unexpected glimpse of how people see you.

DiaryRose
Work It

I woke up about 10 times during the night last night, a spot on the underside of my right arm was sending shooting pains all the way down the right side of my body. When I permawoke around noon (heyyyyy Sunday morning) I saw that Half Asleep Rose I had fashioned a way to rest my throbbing arm on a pile of pillows slightly above my head (you’re supposed to elevate ailing limbs right? sleepy Rose really fixated on that) in a way that calmed the aching enough for me to fall asleep but (bonus!) caused my shoulder to fall asleep. Which is possible, apparently.

Basically- if you think you’re working your triceps out enough, you probably aren’t, and once a large, infuriatingly positive man with a headset mic starts yelling at you to pick up a heavy ass weight and lift it repeatedly over your head you will finally have an opportunity to understand true, agonizing, delayed muscle pain.

This particular misery was dealt by OrangeTheory Fitness. My best guess is that the Theory is just that that everything should be orange and expensive. I not so secretly love going to these types of classes. I can sniff out a new student special like no one else. But I stand extremely firm in my persistent poverty once the schpiels start about “becoming a member” and “class packages” and “fitness goals” and “bank details” and “my first born” and “don’t try to escape haha just kidding." I like to pick a spot on the wall right behind the person pitching to me and think about which Epicurious search terms I’m going to plug in to plan for replenishing every single calorie I burned once it becomes polite for me to take my phone out. Sometimes I nod a little so they think I’m listening, all the while just thinking “bacon..harissa… spring-form pan” on a loop.

Diary, ReviewsRose
Money Money Money

I spent this morning working from home, and taking care of some financial stuff that was on my plate. I miraculously got up early(ish) and really knocked some things out.

My finances have always been a huge source of emotion for me. For years I had rolling, full blown panic attacks.

I've been financially independent since I was 17, when I made the decision to go to an incredibly expensive college. I had a minuscule scholarship but the rest of tuition and living costs was supplemented by loans, and working 30ish hours a week at Starbucks.

Hand to god, I don't look back at this time with regret, for two reasons:
1) It was generally amazing.
2) There's no point, because I can't change it now.

But, the reality was that I graduated with almost 100K dollars in student loan debt. I choose to be open with this fact because it's WAY more common than you'd think for 20 somethings to have their lives totally changed because of a decision they made when they were 18 and I try to own it.

But- it has had a huge impact on how the last 8 years of my life have gone.

After graduating, and after the world's shortest six month grace period, my payments started and my sleep stopped. My heart would race, worried about and embarrassed by the phone calls that would come if I missed a payment. I would refrain from going out with people because I would spend the whole time distracted, in panic mode. I was working 2, 3, 4 jobs then. I relied on living opportunities where I could bypass a lease application, and literally any job someone would throw my way. I was a nanny, a security guard at a museum, a sales associate at a particularly bland clothing store that rhymes with Man Bailor Coughed, and a *seemingly* Forever Sound Intern.

This morning I found myself submitting claims for my FSA, reviewing my savings account (which is meager at best) and checking my credit score.
But I do feel like I'm starting to get ahead of things.

Be patient with yourself, loves. This shit is hard and we're doing our best.

DiaryRose
I've Got The Power

My current boss is going to be moving to a new role at the company so we're going through the process of hiring her replacement.

9/10 times in my life I assume my opinion with these things is not being solicited, and because of that, 5/10 times I refrain from giving it. But now it seems as though I'll actually be part of the process and will get my very own interview with the candidates who make it past a certain round.

My relationship with being interviewed started early. And by being interviewed, I mean the judgment kind, not the Vanity Fair feature kind (any day now). I remember meeting with the guidance counselor in elementary school while they asked me strategic questions meant to determine my worthiness for the "Gifted" Program, the name of which I'm now realizing is really problematic. I remember just instinctively knowing the right answers. Not necessarily the most accurate answers, but the answers they wanted to hear. I actually remember thinking, as I sat in a small room with a few other kids doing logic puzzles, that basically, I had auditioned to have more work shoved down my throat.

And it continued. In high school, I went through the process of applying to be a Rotary Exchange Student. This process included about 8 million interviews- both one on one, and group interviews, where you're pitted against other overachievers in a suburban Hunger Game.

I'm not saying I said anything to get ahead, because (for the most part) I didn't fabricate. I tried to be as truthful as possible. But I'd be lying to you now if I didn't say my interview skills were developed mostly due to a vague longing to be special an acute fear of failure- definitely not based on any real confidence, or any interest in speaking to strangers. Strangers are the actual worst.

My first interview in NYC for a Real Job was for a receptionist job at an audio post house. It was awful. I was shown into one of the studios and asked some mild questions by a man with a ponytail and a Dream Theater shirt. He was pleasant enough and I thought things were going great. Then the owner showed up.

He strode in 25 minutes late, all ill-fitting leather and Invisalign, looked me up and down, and without introducing himself he simply said "I hope you're not interested in moving up in this company, because this is a receptionist job and I'd rather not waste my time talking with you if you have other plans."

He didn't ask me a single question but suddenly I was tanking it. I felt so stung. I remember afterwards going to get coffee at a coffee shop where my friend worked and sitting there and just feeling so screwed and sad.

Over the next few years, I tried to hone my skills, determined to not feel that way again. I did my best to figure out how to seem ambitious, but humble. Outgoing but attentive. Qualified, but not overqualified. It gets a little easier I guess, but it's still exhausting.

And now I'm on the other side. And I'm honestly just as exhausted by the prospect of trying to evaluate someone else.

DiaryRose
Happy New Year, Suckers

Whatever I do, I've been keeping episodes of 30 Rock on in the background. I hear it's going to be removed from Netflix in November which gives me very little time to play the entire series 6-8 more times while I don't pay attention.

But seriously (because we're serious here)- I find that certain TV shows actually relieve a lot of my anxiety, the anxiety that makes its appearance when I get home, take off my pants and begin judging my life. Gilmore Girls, The Office and 30 Rock all inspire a sense of relative calm in me. I honestly think it's because the stakes are so low and every problem that pops up is solved by the end of each episode. It makes problems in general feel solvable.

So. I'm trying to make some changes. September feels like a decent time to take those pantless judgements of my life and attempt to make positive changes. This school year for example I'm going to stop eating carbs, and read The Alchemist, and finish knitting this scarf I started in 2010.

But seriously (again with the seriousness, ugh) that's all insane and I'm definitely not doing any of those horrible things. I don't fuck with a scale, I eat ice cream and then run around, or I go to boxing where I both punch things and try to look cute in front of the hot trainer there. And frankly I'm doing a damn good job if we use his Instagram likes of pictures of my face as a barometer, which I do.

 I already read The Alchemist and would give my left nut to have that hour and a half back. And I've carried that half-scarf around to 6 different apartments at this point- it feels insulting to the scarf to "finish" it. What does finished even look like? Who is ever really finished?

My actual hopes for this year:

1) Leave work at work. (THIS IS SO HARD WHY)

2) Find a rad person to hang out with and smooch. (THIS IS LESS HARD BUT NOT EASY)

3) Educate myself about the Watergate scandal... something about Nixon and a hotel and wiretapping? (This one is horrifying to admit but WE'RE ALL FRIENDS HERE I know about other stuff)

4) Write lots of things for you.

4.5) And do it with honesty and maximum vulnerability. And that's fucking scary. But let's give it a try.

 

*I reserve the right to add to this list

**Or subtract

DiaryRose
I Was Always This Cool

I just went through my old blog from my early teens to see if I could get some inspiration/confidence for this new shiny blog. It’s crazy to read posts that are in my voice from 12-13 years ago.

My last post was this dramatic goodbye when I left for my junior year in Thailand. I said that I would no longer be blogging, and wished everyone good luck and told them I would miss them. Some of the standout comments on that post, with 2017 Rose’s comments, include:

Have lots of fun in Thailand! I’ll have trouble finding another lab partner as much fun as you!
    -I was terrible at science. But that’s probably why they used the word “fun” not “good”. I remember having a big crush on my chemistry teacher.

Have an excellent time.  Chemistry was a blast.
    -There is no way this was a blast.

Just ’cause you’re an MC doesn’t mean you get to be an asshole, just ’cause you’re a man doesn’t mean you get to act like a bitttttttch
    -I mean I think this one is self explanatory.

You fucker you could easily update this but you don’t.
    -Not wrong.

Hm. Did I really think that I was going to never post things about myself on the internet ever again? Adorable.

DiaryRose
The Draft

Welcome to The Draft. Here you will find unreliable yet colorful SSRI reviews, transcripts of bad dates, a sprinkling of TV/movie reviews (with varying levels of accuracy infused with maximum opinions) and a whole bunch of other diary-esque garbage.

I've spent several years oversharing on Facebook and I thought it may be time for me to share TM of my personal I with a bigger circle.

If you don't know me... wait how did you even find this? This is awesome. I love strangers (I don't really but you're probably great.)

I don't want to get ahead of myself, but I think it's safe to say this blog is going to fill the hole that Silk Road left. It's going to fill the hole that Sephora left when they stopped making my eye shit. There's no hole it won't fill. I'm going to jam my words into all sorts of holes. Sometimes multiple holes at the same time. Will you love it? Yes. Will you be turned on by it? Yes but don't even feel weird about it.

This blog will be the kindly old man who gives you unsolicited advice (but a great deal less racist!) You'll be able - nay, encouraged - to park your keister in the tree of my life and peep in through the window like the creeper you are. You'll laugh, you'll cry, but most importantly you'll read it when you're bored.

Look, I'm just trying to make a permanent mark on the internet, by which my children will one day be horrified.

These blog posts could take any of the following formats:
-Live updates from wherever I happen to be, like one of the bars where I like to read and eavesdrop, or the backseat of the ride I'm hitching to Costco, or from my bathroom where I'm overwhelming myself with prospect of a "skincare routine."
-A not-so-live collection of things that have been building up inside of me
-Honestly it could be anything this is not a comprehensive list

If you're one of the above-mentioned strangers: I'm a 29 year old Brooklyn dweller who works as a project manager at a media tech startup. I like running and Always Sunny and being by myself a lot. I hate it when any part of another person touches me on the subway. If I could have dinner with anyone alive or dead I would pick the guy on Catfish who thought he was dating Katy Perry for six years.

TLDR; snarky yuppie.

Looks like this is happening guys. And it's probably going to keep happening, so let's all settle in.

DiaryRose