All posts tagged: advice

Contractors workers people.

How to Piss off a Woman in 5 Easy Steps: The Contractor(s) from Hell

This past weekend I went to the Philadelphia Home Show. Why? Well, I’m a homeowner now. I’m renovating my house.  And there’s nothing I enjoy more than collecting paint samples and drooling over things I can’t afford. While I was there, trying to justify the purchase of new bamboo memory foam pillows, I noticed a booth. A booth I recognized. A logo I hate. It’s… Actually, I won’t tell you. Because I’m classy like that. And I still haven’t told you what they did. So let’s begin at the beginning, shall we? It’s one thing, you see, to be 29 and to buy a house. It’s another to hire a general contractor. Contestant Number 1 asks me, as we’re standing in the smallest of my three bedrooms, “What do you want done in this room?” “Just a ceiling fan,” I respond. “Hung in the middle of the room. That’s all.” He encourages me to think about it. “You should draw it out. You look like an artist. You’re wearing artists’ pants.” Artists’ pants? What the …

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Writing Wednesday: How to Ask for Help

Here is how it goes down. This time is was not Jeffrey Euginides but rather Liane Moriarty, an Australian NY Times-bestselling author and in this particular case, a hardback copy of her newest title “Big Little Lies.” It was not the sort of book I would have selected for myself. But my new boyfriend’s mom had given it to me for Christmas (she gives each of her children and their significant others books for Christmas). In truth, I started it just to be polite and because my new Euginides books hadn’t arrived at the library yet. But then, it caught me; it dragged me in and I realized that it wasn’t just your usual murder mystery (which was, I’m ashamed to say my initial assessment). It was so much more, and so expertly crafted. You didn’t even know who was dead until the final pages, let alone who to blame. I kept thinking, “This was so well done. So smart. Why can’t I write like this???” My recent trip to Planned Parenthood came to mind. …

El Salvador Sunday 529

Press Trip Lesson #2: El Bano…

It’s our first day out of San Salvador and between the drive down to the coast, the boat ride through the mangrove forest and the fresh coconut water served in an actual coconut with an actual straw, I’m feel rather high on life. There’s only one problem. I availed myself of not one but two tropical juices at the hotel’s continental breakfast (research, right?), plus the coconut water, plus an entire liter of regular water to ward off the inevitable jetlag. (It’s only two hours but I am prone to narcoleptic-like behavior on a good day so I’m not taking my chances.) And now I’m in a little tiny boat, somewhere between the Pacific Ocean, the Lepa river, the floating Hooters restaurant in the middle of the estuary (I’m not kidding), and the dock. And my bladder is threatening to explode. I don’t want to say anything. I don’t want my colleagues to think I’m some sort of press trip amateur, even though I am, so I cross my legs and force myself to think …

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Writing Wednesday: To Blog Anonymously or Under Your Real Name?

Last week, I received an email from one of my “longtime readers.” I know this not because I have some sort of sophisticated tracking device set up through my blog but because she described herself as such and was asking for advice on an issue that many personal bloggers face: to use one’s real name or to go anonymous? “I’ve been writing a blog on and off for 2-3 years,” she explained. “My issue is that I used to try to write safe content for the general public instead of revealing anything too personal but I’m thinking about starting to write a personal blog because there is more freedom. My concern is that I have a full-time job (also in a university) and I’m worried about my conservative older colleagues finding/reading it because I use my real name.” Well, here are my two cents on the pros and cons of writing a blog anonymously vs. using your real name. The first question you have to ask yourself is why do you want to write a …

brazilian wax

36 Ways to Deal with Unwanted Pubic Hair

Last week, for the benefit of those of you with whom I am not Facebook Friends, I posted the following: Okay ladies… bikini waxing? How do we feel? Seeing as I’m going to be wearing a bikini every day for the next week, I’m considering it but a) I think its gonna hurt, b) I think its gonna be expensive and c) I’ve never had one before so I’m worried that I’m gonna have some sort of adverse reaction and be stuck on a cruise ship looking even worse than before. Thoughts? Also, how long does it last? Will I need a touch up mid-week? The response was almost enough to make me give up blogging.  I received 36 comments for something that took me all of ten seconds to write!  And here I spend hours painstakingly crafting interesting blog posts for your amusement—hmmmph! At any rate, enjoy.  (And for those of who already saw this thread, scroll down to the end to see which option I finally picked!) Jim: I cant wait to read …

We’re Just Here to See the Wine and Drink the Flowers

Sometimes I have normal weeks, by which I mean I can churn out several reasonably coherent (and typo-free) blog posts in addition to everything else I’m supposed to be doing.  This week, however, hasn’t been one of those weeks.  And even though it’s only Wednesday, I’m not terribly optimistic. Why not?  Well, it’s time for the annual Philadelphia International Flower Show, which means it’s also time for my grandmother to make her annual trek from Toms River, NJ to the City of Brotherly Love in order to celebrate her birthday. And boy does she like to celebrate. Those of you who’ve been following my exploits for the past year or so may recall what happened at last year’s flower show, but in case you’re just tuning in, here you have it, hot of the press (okay, okay…  lukewarm off the press, and ever-so-slightly recycled but what can I say?  Stories about my grandmother are timeless.) When I informed the Bovary Reading Bachelor (with whom I went on one and only one date this time last …

Break Up 101: How to Dump (or Get Dumped) with Dignity

Nothing from nothing but if you’re dating a woman who writes a blog about… well… dating, you probably shouldn’t send her twenty two text messages when she finally comes to her senses about your relationship (or lack thereof) and decides to call it quits. Nor should you email her.  Or send her Facebook messages.  And you certainly shouldn’t send duplicates of the same messages just to ensure that she gets them. Trust me: she gets them.  And you’re not doing yourself any favors when you call her names and accuse her of being a drama queen.  (After all, she’s not the one who’s sent 22 text messages, now is she?) The good thing about breaking up with a man who’s made you miserable for the past six months is that the actual break up causes very little pain.  Mind you, I use the term “breakup” loosely because it’s hard to break up with a man who never wanted to be your boyfriend in the first place, but I’m proud—if somewhat mystified—to report that I shed …

Parenting? I Know ALL About It!

I’ve never been married (or given birth) but from what I understand, you’re not supposed to badmouth your spouse in front of your kids. For this reason, when my preschoolers turned to me to ask, “Miss Kat, you’re not coming on our field trip?” I couldn’t tell them the truth.  I couldn’t tell them that I wanted to come, that indeed I had planned to come and even knew exactly what I’d purchase from the gift shop on my way out because the truth would have made have made my supervisor look bad.  And, as I’ve just said, you’re not supposed to badmouth your spouse (or your supervisor) in front of your kids. The non-profit for which I teach creative movement five mornings a week is, like most non-profits, experiencing the ill-effects of the country’s economic disparity.  As such, my fellow teaching artists and I were informed last Wednesday that we were “welcome” to come on Friday’s field trip but that there was “no money” for it. “No money?” I asked.  “What do you mean?  …