Category Archives: daily dose

work guys

I’m one of the people who doesn’t really care about strangers, yet I constantly wonder what their story is, where they’re headed, where they’ve come from, I think you get the picture. One of the most fascinating internal observations I make is about someone’s profession, and I think that the way a person dresses for the office speaks volumes. Having now worked in two distinct, yet somewhat similar, neighborhoods, I’ve honed my ability to make stereotypical comments specifically regarding this matter. With that, let me share with you a variety of “guys” I’ve observed in their different habitats:

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MIDTOWN EAST: Your consummate professional. Historically reserved for Mad Men types from advertising firms, obscure banks, and the publishing industry, your average gentleman walking around the east 50s is suited up and, for the most part, well dressed. While he may be found donning the omnipresent yet horrific luggage colored driving loafer, this guy is still probably well-tailored on top. This is a classic neighborhood with jobs and companies that have equally distinct pasts, so while you’ll unlikely find shlubs wandering Madison Avenue, this isn’t the funkiest bunch.

TRIBECA/CHAMBERS STREET: This is where all the cool kids get off and sometimes I disembark the 2/3 a stop early just to join in, because really, what interesting person ever exited at Park Place? No one. I’m not entirely sure what careers abound in this neighborhood, but regardless of what the guys are wearing, their very chic, but not too chic. Just like the people who live in Tribeca, the men who work near the Chambers Street stop seem to be cool and self-assured, but not overly confident or self-aware. You’ll likely see flocks of guys briskly climbing the stairs in paper denim and slim wool jackets, and if they have to be in a suit, you could bet that it’s tapered to 1960s perfection, he may even be accessorizing with a tie clip, but for ironic effect.

FIDI: Don’t even get me started. I have never seen a duller and more depressing group of guys, ever. Men have some fantastic options available to them (hello, ties!) and to not wear them is a waste. Downtown, you’ve got a lot of kids fresh out of college who never knew how to dress in the first place and who are now working with men who don’t know how to dress, and they’re all working at either generic or obscure funds, or selling insurance, or whatever else allows them to get away with such a poor display of attire. When did polar fleece, checked shirts that resemble math paper, and pleated pants become acceptable? With numerous publications and creative companies moving to World Trade Center, here’s to hoping that the culture and sensibilities from that align with Tribeca will start moving south.

DUMBO: While I only interned in DUMBO for two summers, what I observed was nothing but a miracle. It takes a special kind of person to take the F train every day, so these are men we’re talking about, not sissies who take the 2/3 for one stop and they’re at the office. Not too different from the Tribeca gentleman, your DUMBO-er most likely works in creative consulting, small print, or design itself. There’s just something about this guy that let’s you know he works–and possibly lives–in Brooklyn.

DAOT

Have you ever found yourself between activities, without enough time to do something else, but just enough time where you’d be too early for the next stop? This is what my mom and I call a “dumb amount of time” and it is possibly one of the most frustrating situations that you will encounter, ever. This can occur at any point, so you always need to be ready, be prepared. Before I give you some ideas of what to do with a dumb amount of time, let me make a base statement: know your surroundings. With that, here are my most brilliant thoughts of what to do when you’re neither here nor there:

  1. Read three pages of a book on a park bench.
  2. Take the subway in the wrong direction on purpose.
  3. Find a Duane Reade to visit and buy snacks that you don’t really want but swear you’ll “save for later because they’re good to have.”
  4. Make fun of people.
  5. Try on shoes.
  6. See what movies are playing when. If you’re final destination actually is a movie theater, then I suggest going to a different theater and seeing what their schedule is!
  7. Find a stranger to talk to about the different ways you could take your morning commute.
  8. Read AM New York.
  9. Get coffee in one place, and then find a bathroom in another.
writing on the wall

Social media is great, but sometimes, it kind of sucks. It’s exacerbated YOLO, gotten kids expelled from school, given rise to FOMO, and I’m sure, has ruined a few friendships in its time. This, however, isn’t one of those “to social media or not” posts, but rather, I have a very specific bone to pick with the platforms that be. I am very…frustrated when some people act as though connecting* through social media is an acceptable stand-in for face-to-face contact. While these spaces can certainly supplement a preexisting relationship, reignite an old one, or start once from scratch, you will never have the same connection without the physical person. Yes, of course some people are dull as dirt but having a meal together is definitely different than “liking” a photo they posted of their latte. Social media enables our delusional thinking, solidifying feelings of closeness to relationships that are probably nonexistent or barely there to begin. But how do you tell someone, “Just because I post photos, or update what I ate for breakfast, and you write pithy comments, doesn’t actually make us close.” You can’t, because polite society tells you that you can’t, but if we lived in Seinfeld-world, we’d be airing those grievances! My vote is for more cara a cara contact, even with the people you can’t really stand.

*And by connecting, I mean sometimes leaving passive comments, not commenting at all, or commenting in completely inappropriate places.

In celebration of Labor Day (just kidding), here is a list of conversations that I never want to hear again, but most likely will:

What to eat for breakfast

What to eat for lunch

What to eat for dinner

What to have for a snack

Should I even have a snack?

When should I workout?

What kind of workout should I do?

How much should I workout?

If I workout “x” amount, then I can drink “y” amount this weekend

I don’t have enough money

I don’t have enough money but I limit myself to buying five cold-pressed juices a week and live in an apartment that my parents are subsidizing

I don’t have enough money to go out with my friends and I live with five roommates in Bedstuy

I hate my clothes

I have the best clothes

I want those clothes

I used to fit into my clothes

How do I fit into my clothes?

What can I eat to fit into my clothes?

what your work bag says about you

We live in a world of many choices: what to eat for breakfast, what underwear to buy, what shade of blue your dog’s harness should be—the amount of decisions we get to make and number of choices we have is immense. A midst all of this gluttony, I’m most fascinated by the fashion choices we make, which I think is pretty clear by the simple fact that I write predominantly about style. Riding the subway at rush hour is a daily habit, and when you’re crammed in a train car, what else are you going to do but look around? When I have time and can afford the space to turn my head, I take it all in, observing what people are listening to, reading, and wearing. Riding the 2/3 through midtown to the near tip of Manhattan, you see a lot of professional types and there is definitely a certain type of girl that that dresses a certain way. Do you know who I’m talking about? She’s the girl with the okay job, the one that she doesn’t totally love but knows it’s a steppingstone to the career of her dreams. She’s the girl that has to wear something unfortunate to the office, and by unfortunate I mean both a) slacks and a blazer; and b) something too trendy. She’s the girls that buys cold-pressed juice everyday but doesn’t have anything saved. She’s also the girl with the bag. But which bag? There are several acceptable choices when it comes to the bag you bring to the office. They each say something very specific about who you are.

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HERVE CHAPELIER: You’re sporty and utilitarian, or want to be perceived as such. These ridiculously durable bags are simple in design with color combinations that don’t actually make sense for everyday use. Therefore, you don’t need to be a particularly stylish person to tote one. These bags are also excellent for saying, “I’m going to work out, and you’re not.” They’re the equivalent of those stupid gym bag so many guys carry around. If you own this bag, you’ve probably had it since your sweet sixteen.

MZ WALLACE: For the type-A lady who is either afflicted with OCD or, on the contrary, needs to inject more organization into her life. Offered in a wide array of styles and colors, there is a bag for every season and every day. Though the brand was initially “under the radar,” it has blossomed into a real professional urbanite’s bag of choice. If you own this bag, you’re fanatical about it, and let’s face it, that’s a little weird, it’s a bag.

MICHAEL KORS: You want a fashionable bag but don’t want to pay a lot. Michael Kors is a genius, he has created an empire and I’m in awe. Having created high quality leather goods at a reasonable price is no easy feat, but Kors has brought luxury to the masses. This is the nice bag for the girl who owns this. She may never have had anything that wasn’t a tote or backpack and this is a real leather bag, whoa. If you own this bag, you want other people to take you seriously.

LONGCHAMP: The “throw all of my shit in it” bag. The most ubiquitous of this selection, no bag is more synonymous with hustling to work or going to the mall than the Longchamp.  Millions of interns use this bag as a shield, to say they mean business. And millions of commuters from Long Island and New Jersey use it to store their e-readers and extra layer for the train ride home. At the fairest of all the price points, shoppers are afforded a study bag, which has zero internal function (it’s literally a black hole), at a great price. If you own this bag, you should be working in a diamond mine, because you’re always digging.

GOYARD: The ultimate indulgence, this bag costs a lot, for what it is. While the house of Goyard was once held in high esteem, they’ve been reduced to embarrassing Canal Street knock-offs.  It’s a flimsy tote with little to no function but still lets everyone know that you have class, because indeed, money can buy you class. If you own this bag, someone once told you that Goyard was the gold standard in luxury and you made it your one splurge, you also never set it on the ground.

ANY COMBINATION THEREOF: Really? I can’t even justify a circumstance where this is acceptable.

A DIFFERENT BAG:  You don’t want to be part of the crowd, but don’t think that your PS1 or Pashli makes you that much different.

So. what bag do you carry?