The scene at Loehmann’s on a Thursday afternoon in early January was both grim and hyper-charged. I was one of a few dozen women who’d been drawn there in a mixture of nostalgia and desperation after the shocking news from the day prior that the chain had declared bankruptcy and would soon be closing its doors forever.
“Oh fuck oh fuck oh fuck,” I thought as I ransacked the aisles, which now wore bright yellow signs that said “Up to 70 percent OFF” and “All Stock Must Go.” Though I’d only been introduced to Loehmann’s in my early twenties, it had been the sight of so many victories. [...]
A man in California emailed recently to tell me how after Christmas dinner last year, his brother drunkenly declared his love for his sister-in-law, the man's own wife. Another man in Georgia told me how his father threatened to call the police to his holiday family gathering several years ago.
Nathan Willi, a 24-year-old electronics salesman in Peoria, Ill., is bracing for family fights about football this year. Fourteen of his family members graduated from Notre Dame. Mr. Willi went to Michigan. "I will stay at the Christmas dinner for as long as I can tolerate the extended family's arrogance," he says.
One of these things is not like [...]
I'm in a wedding Saturday, which is one of the rare occasions I get a mani/pedi instead of painting my nails myself.
I get my eyebrows waxed near my house at the cheapest place ever. It's run by a bunch of Asian ladies who wear these funny smock-shirt things with no actual shirt underneath, so I can see all their bras. My hair grows at lightning speed, so I'm in there roughly every eight days. Every eight days, I walk in and it's packed but quiet except for the sounds of foot scraping and that machine that smokes when they take off fake nails, and every time I walk in, [...]
"All my life … I’d been the woman smiling the faintly superior smile while another woman told me she had decided to take some time out or pursue a less competitive career track so that she could spend more time with her family. I’d been the woman congratulating herself on her unswerving commitment to the feminist cause, chatting smugly with her dwindling number of college or law-school friends who had reached and maintained their place on the highest rungs of their profession. I'd been the one telling young women at my lectures that you can have it all and do it all, regardless of what field you are in. Which [...]