Friday, February 21, 2014


Friday Open Thread

In case you missed anything this week, the 1902 Smith College women's basketball team has been:

Contouring their faces like Kim Kardashian and talking to pregnant porn star Kayden Kross

Almost going to the Olympicssaying yes to yes and getting shingles, and imagining crossover television romances

• Calling Subaru Roadside Assistance & Empowerment so they won't have to eat their emergency Clif Bars

Throwing a pity party and baking an Allies Pie

• Talking to a Queer Chick about Non-Monosexuality 101, to Baba Yaga about time management, and to Christina Bryza about writing picture books for grown-ups

What have you been up to? Plans for the weekend? House of Cards or True Detective or both or neither? Last week of February, we got this.

58 Comments / Post A Comment


Ugh, fuck Texas. They decided to skip straight to summer this week.


@Onymous Northeast here - we're edging into the fifties, but unfortunately, it's come with the most dense fog I ever remember and loads of rain. Then back to the cold next week with a possible nor'easter next weekend? So I feel for you (and everyone all over the US apparently) and share your "fuck [insert state name]" weather sentiment.


@Onymous Seriously? I live in Austin and just went straight from a week in Chicago to two weeks in Washington state. My mom keeps calling me to complain about how cold it is and all I can think is "fuck you my hair froze today."


@Batmans_Robyn To be fair a high of 80 isn't actually summer for Austin.


yeees I finally found this@l


Ugh. Been in a real life rut these past few weeks. Everything is going fine; if I were in a better state of mind I'd have not a complaint in the world. But I feel sort of stuck. And boring. And predictable. So:

Interesting Things I Am Considering That Could Make Me Feel More Interesting:
- cutting all my hair off (done before)
- tattoo (done before) (can do again) (in a sexier place) (my other wrist??)
- take a freighter boat and ride to Seoul and write about it for the New Yorker (Patricia Marx just beat me to it)
- get a weave (too hard to explain to white people, table for now)
- go back to yoga (makes me sleepy)
- quit my job and work at a juice bar (free juice is the best juice)
- pick up and move across the country when my lease is done (can I send my mom my laundry through the mail?)
- get my MFA (no)
- buy a SAD lamp (tax refund money?)
- accept my fate as 22-going-on-30 and just put more money into my 401K?

Additional ideas are appreciated.

Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that)

@jazzloon whichever sounds most exciting to you! If one of the bigger things (tattoo, juice bar, Seoul, etc) is too big or not immediate enough or whatever, (or if a weave hurts too much? hi, I'm white), book a day off and take some of the best advice Parks and Rec has ever given and Treat Yo Self.

Go to a neighbourhood you don't spend enough time in. Look at some fancy houses. Instagram a bunch of shit, or don't even look at your phone at all. Get a great book and go someplace nice for lunch. Have wine with lunch. Have dessert. Get a manicure or a massage if that's your deal. Go to a candy store. Buy yourself something pretty or try on some expensive clothes you'd never actually buy. Go to a park or someplace like that if weather permits! Treat yo self.

up cubed

I usually do the last one, and I just realized I have $52k in my retirement account. I had NO idea I could save that much money. It felt amazing. On the flip side, I also just bought a car (financed) and that is also making me feel great.
I also recommend taking a cool class, like Krav maga or surfing :)


@jazzloon This is only semi-relevant, as it doesn't really give you any ideas on what to do, but I happened to catch half of an old On Point episode last night that discussed time and our perception of time. It was from May 2013 and features Claudia Hammond. It might be worth a listen just to get you to think about you spend your time and then how you perceive it when looking back. The part I caught was about how our brains file memories of routines vs. new memories and how it makes us feel about how slow/fast time moves. So, not totally relevant, but super interesting and worth a listen since it sounds like you're looking for something to do anyway!


@cabber Here's the link: http://onpoint.wbur.org/2013/05/28/time-warped

Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that)

@up cubed The class idea is actually a great one! I'm seconding it as a person who feels alive every time she walks into or out of her new class, and it's only two weeks in.
@cabber That sounds really interesting!


@Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that) It really was. I plan to listen to the entire episode at some point because I also heard a portion about how our brains process traumatic events and memories and I work with a lot of people who have experienced trauma.


@jazzloon duolingo.com is fun and free. I am far from being able to speak any new languages, but I do feel like I am learning and it is a good activity if you live somewhere like I do where the weather has made leaving your home uninviting. Which you probably do since basically this winter sucks for everyone, everywhere, all the time.


@jazzloon you beautiful broads, all of you. Such great advice. From most recent to least:

@cabber I was all about DuoLingo over the summer, using it to brush up on my Spanish in case I ever need to talk to a drunk Spanish-speaking toddler (that's the level I am currently at) and I totally let it slide away from me. Such a good idea, though. Although thanks for the link, gonna tab that shizz right nah

@up cubed wait HOW. this sounds like a Billfold article I need to read. I've only been contributing for ~6 months but GIRL. Work. It. Out. That's amazing. You are my inspiration. I recently paid $65 dollars on a $59 loan payment so I am ALSO pretty moneybags right now ;) ;)

@Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that) those are all brill ideas. Fuck, I cannot wait for it to get warm and I can say "FUCK WORK" and go lay in Prospect Park and eat cheese and finish The Best of Nora Ephron. ONE DAY.

Thank you. Just having people chat to me makes me feel better :) Also seeing some NYC-based Pinners tonight, which is always fun!


@jazzloon OH. And my greatest advice whenever I am feeling down:

Turn off your phone. Kick out your roommates. Order Thai food and masturbate. It is the cheapest upper I've found.


@jazzloon Ohmygod Thai fooooood: weekend plans sorted.

Maybe eat cheese, read Nora Ephron, bask in SAD lamp glow? House plants? I am on a house plant kick, and that feels good (until they all die, inevitably) and it's sort of almost like a park. Although I've just depressed myself by suggesting it.


@jazzloon Start doing judo? Or some other martial art/ activity/ class/ thing, but I can state from personal experience that knowing how to throw people does make you feel like a badass.

Picking up and moving across the country is also good times, but maybe wait until spring on that one?

Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that)

Makeup advice needed (from the commentariat or put this in a column, possibly so I can get an answer):
First of all - Can I go to Sephora and redeem my points for a reward without buying something? I know I can't do that online, but I'm not sure about in-store.

Second - there are two face primers being offered as Beauty Insider rewards this month and I'm not sure if one is better than the other. There's the Laura Mercier Illuminating primer and Smashbox Photo Finish.

I have a small sample of Laura Mercier's hydrating primer, and it's pretty good. It goes well under her tinted moisturizer, which by the way am I really supposed to be wearing stuff under that? wtf.

If anyone has any strong feelings about either one of those, please let me know!


@Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that) I want to help, but I know zero things about make up.

ETA: But Smashbox sounds fun, so that is my vote. Trying something new seems like a good use of rewards?

Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that)

@adorable-eggplant I like your style! Here I was, being boring, thinking Sephora owes me nothing but the best because I've given them over 100 of my dollars over the last year and a bit.

chickpeas akimbo

@Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that) I would say probably you can redeem points without buying anything? I've never done that, but I have redeemed a free perfume certificate thinger, without buying anything, without issue.
I use the smashbox primer pretty regularly, and it's a solid product. It's the only primer I've used, though, so no idea how it compares.


@Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that) YOU CAN! I've done it!




@leonstj Leon!!! What are you (and everyone else) cooking this weekend?
I got um some black beans with ham hocks planned and maybe some sourdough bread cause the starter is giving me the guilts. And possibly an apple pie with dried cranberries.


I've been in this Olympics/Ukraine haze for days. Has anything happened outside of Eastern Europe lately?

Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that)

@Kalorama_Kat I'm babysitting my sister's cat. Does this count as a world event or is it too warm and snuggly?

Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that)

I just noticed how cool that picture of the 1902 Smith College women's basketball team is.


Smith forever! <3

Hot Doom

@NormaDesmond I'm ALWAYS late to OTs >:( Nevertheless. GO PIONEERS! (or were they The Virgins back then?)

Clara Morena

This is from a conversation I had with an older man

moi:Oh, I'm 23.
olderman: aww, you are still a baby. I can't even remember when I was 25.

In my after school program, I have to deal with a screaming five year old ( she screamed for 30 minutes straight! and a stupid boss)
But I still was able to keep things in control and deal with 17 kindergartens. If I can deal with that with no help with my boss, I know I can handle the job market. Tomorrow, I get to hangout with a college friend and I found out they are going to mail my diploma soon! Huzza~


So... I got accepted to grad school yesterday! AHHHHH!

I haven't even told anyone outside of, like, my mother, because I've come to resent humblebrags even if they're not intentional and also it will require me to sell most of my belongings and move 5000 miles away, so there's a bit of preparation involved and it doesn't feel real yet.

And yeah, a Master's degree... Ehhhh. I've waited three years after undergrad to apply just because I wasn't sure it was a good investment, and I'm still not sure. Is anyone ever sure? All I know is that I can't stay here in bum fuck Egypt working a dead-end job that makes me extremely unhappy and directionless. On one hand, I hate the "do what you love" thing for obvious reasons, but at the same time I would hate myself for not going after my dream job. Even if I fall flat on my face, which very well may happen.

I guess I'm sharing all this on here with you guys because it's been SO long (three years, actually) since I've felt the gentlest tinge of optimism or excitement, being stuck in a job I resent and not being able to find anything better and questioning what it is I'm after, anyway, while also feeling guilty about being unhappy in the first place. I've only been a regular reader for a year-ish, but The Hairpin (and its readers) are kickass and I honestly think that lurking here has helped me gain some confidence to go out there and fucking OWN IT.

I feel like it's also worth noting that when I received the email yesterday while I was at work, for the first time ever I was very glad that my job requires me to work entirely by myself, because I wasn't expecting a response so soon and immediately shouted "HOLY FUCKING SHIT" and bounced up and down like a five year-old for way longer than is socially acceptable.


@stroopwafel Hey, congratulations, lady! That ain't no humblebrag, it's just stone-cold impressive. Can I ask what field you will be going into?

I also have found confidence and initiative through Hairpin posts and comments. I'm glad you shared your accomplishment with us first!

I am imagining you yelling HOLY FUCKING SHIT and bouncing up and down at work and it is making me smile.


@ru_ri Thank you thank you thank you!

I will be studying Classics/Ancient History, which means I'm kind of gambling with my life in terms of future employment, but I'd love love LOVE to be a history professor one day so I'm going for it. I'm still in shock that I actually got in, and I'm alternating between periods of giddy excitement and that "ughhhhhh loannnns" feeling.


@stroopwafel Hey, I was a Classics major, lo these many years ago! I never pursued a graduate degree because of the limited job prospects in the field (I did not want to be a professor) and my inability to tolerate academia, but I still get into the Virgil now and then. It warms my heart to know that younger people are still drawn to the field. Good for you! I am sure you will kick ass and change your students' lives.


Ok, so this may be a sensitive topic, but here goes:

I have only commented a handful of times here (but I have been an avid reader for a while) so maybe I don't really have a right to be annoyed, but I am so disappointed that all the commenters seem to have left en masse for The Toast.

I'm just going to say it, I don't really like The Toast. It is actually physically hard for me to look at, I think it has something to do with the color scheme, like the text is gray or something? And the layout and commenting format is very weird.

Also however cliqueish the commentariat was here, it is so much worse there. It's like everyone arrived already knowing each other (which they did). Actually it's not just the comments, the vibe of the whole place has an in-group feel.

Okay I'm done with my complaining, had to vent.

Does anyone else feel the same?


@zeytin Wait, are you actually--pointing out that elephant in the room?

I read both, and enjoy both greatly. The Toast has a decidedly different flavor--a bit darker, maybe? But I don't think reading one needs to exclude the other.

Like you, I am sad about the depletion of the Hairpin Commentariat. I think the new editors have really found their stride in the past couple of months, and some days the quality of the posts here has just had me astounded and impressed. And yet--comment numbers are in the single digits. I comment when I am moved to, but I am not a regular commenter either. I just don't have the time and energy to engage on that level consistently.

Truly, I have no idea how to expand the readership again. All I can do is read faithfully and give as much encouragement as possible to the editors (Jia, you are simply amazing!!!) and to the remaining commentariat (@adorable-eggplant, you are the best!!!) and keep enjoying the overall excellence that exists here.


@ru_ri Thanks for the shout out! I'm actually also someone who just isn't into the Toast (although there have been some really great posts and I do enjoy the Feel the Burn series [not that I've check in in awhile, but I bookmarked the one with lunges and wall squats in case I ever get inspired to actually do those)]. It's just not my bag overall. But the internet is a big wide world, so I'm happy it's out there.

I miss the busy OT too, mostly because I've gotten such good advice and it's great to have some solidarity for the tough stuff, but I think it will pick up steam again, perhaps. I've been enjoying the posts though like crazy lately, in particular Baba Yaga and the Galactic Rabbit.

Anywho, I'm around, happy to chat with whomever. My galentine's day this year was spent with a friend I met on the 'pin, so it's still really clear to me how awesome it is to have this community. I wish it had been around during my dissolute youth (ditto Rookie, which I also just can't get in to reading, but imagine I would have really liked in earlier days) although I probably would've scoffed and rolled my eyes because I was a total jerk.

Hot Doom

@zeytin I read both, though I admit to checking the Hairpin a bit less often these days. However, I still like looking at the OT here (even though I'm always, always two days late) and you're right, it's a shame that many of the old commenters have almost completely left here. A few of them have changed their Hairpin names too, which probably adds to the "everyone knows each other" vibe. Now that the spamming is mostly under control, I have been coming back here a lot more, because the people are still awesome here (Like you guys!). I hope people either start to return and check in, or a new, similarly awesome 'Pintariat builds up.


@adorable-eggplant ageed 100% w/ this.


@zeytin I have no quarrel with the Toast, content-wise, but the comment section isn't for me. A lot of it is timing; the site as a whole is blocked at my work, but it wasn't for the first week or so, so I was able to comment in the beginning. Then, once my work filter kicked in, I could only read after work, and I didn't feel like hanging out in the comments of any of the articles. By the time I tried commenting again, the comment section had developed its own atmosphere, and it just wasn't something I felt like I could dive into.

Anyway, I have really enjoyed Emma's and Jia's contributions! And I'll keep commenting here - the past two weeks have been bizarrely busy at work and I've been restricting my internet use so I can get stuff done.

up cubed

I enjoy the content of The Toast, but generally prefer to hang out here for the music, the recurring items (<3 u Baba Yaga), etc. This website is way better content-wise than the number of comments would suggest. I always imagined that websites for women would have really active comment threads (from Jezebel onwards, excluding Slate and that ilk), so I keep expecting the numbers here to grow.
However, the log-in keeps kicking me out and my comments disappear when I start a new thread :(


@zeytin I've been really bummed about the lack of comments too. However I've recently been having difficulty logging in using my Twitter account, which means I'm not as chatty as I might otherwise be. But then I remembered that this happened before and I made a regular account, so here I am. There are posts I love here, and posts I love at the Toast, and there are posts I love on both sites that I'm "meh" about. But I do hate seeing the commentariat split between the sites and the the numbers dwindle here.


@all I also get logged out all the time--even when I am on the same page in the same session! It is weird. And I really think it inhibits comments.

The other thing people have mentioned is the Scourge of Spam. *brief pause to wave to / flip off the spambots below*
I know that the editors are limited in the amount of time they can spend deleting spam, but could there not be a way that regular readers can flag spam for easy deletion? Or something? It's more of a problem here than I have seen on any other site (but admittedly I don't get around much, internet-wise, and I tend to frequent sites with active moderation).

isabelle bleu

@zeytin Yah, I feel that a little bit, even though I am devoted to The Toast as well. Totally person, anecdotal thoughts: I use the sites a little differently; Hairpin is my work-day go-to, and because I work in a public office and usually have a billion things to do, I rarely comment (today's a rare exception, snow day is keeping General Public away from my desk today) and, when I do, don't always have time to go back and check. The Toast is my after-work treat (too much of their content borders on NSFW territory) BUT because both sites are posting on Eastern time, for the most part, I'm over here on the West coast and often hours behind the flurry of conversation. I also enjoy a role as a passenger on the XOJane Commentariat bus, and while I think that The Hairpin has much mroe consistently high quality comments I do like that the Disqus system sends email notifications when someone replies to a comment. I think that if The 'Pin had a similar system I would sneak over to the comment box more often during the work day when I need a two-minute break between instances of people yelling in my general direction.


@isabelle bleu - you can get email updates from the Pin! I got yours that way. If you go to the settings at the top right of the page, you should be able to set up what email notifications.


@Blushingflwr I just came to say the same thing. I can't remember if I opted in or if it was default, but I definitely get email notifications!

isabelle bleu

@zeytin @blushingflwr OH WHOA WHAT OH WOW!!! Geez, thank you, virtual flower bouquets and boxes of chocolate to you, etc. Dunno how I never noticed this before! I look forward to my non-productive moments at work becoming a different kind of non-productive fun!


It's late in the thread, but I wanted to add my voice to this: I used to be a REALLY active commenter here, but changed jobs, so I can only catch up once or twice a week. But I still like it here! The layout of the Toast (and the fact that it's blocked at my work) makes it harder for me to read, and the comments either don't load right on my home computer or just aren't as easy to browse anyway. I love the content in both places, but the Hairpin will always have my heart.


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