places

travel vignettes: BROOKLYN

prospect park
pizza
summer
jewish
brownstones
barbecue
IKEA
backyard
bodega
bagels
wonder wheel
mckibbin
flea market
eastern parkway
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photo via allthebuildingsinnewyork.com

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boyfriend, the latest

the (most important) men of ‘sex & the city,’ ranked by me

Thanks to a new Amazon Prime membership, I recently binge-watched all six seasons of Sex and the City(No, I don’t have a life.) I’ve always been a fan of the show, but watched it rather sporadically, enjoying a re-run here and there instead of following it serially. Regardless, my recent bingeing and seasoned dating experience have given me a fresh perspective as to which men are worthy and which are trash.

1. Smith Jerrod

Smith did NOT get enough air time. Hotness aside, he was hands down the sweetest guy in all six seasons of SATC. He stuck by Samantha not just through cancer, but during a relapse with Richard (trash). Not to mention that he was totally unthreatened by Samantha’s success, didn’t care that tabloids thought he was gay, and worked super hard in his own career.

2. Steve Brady

Another under-appreciated gem is bartender Steve, who Miranda is literally so rude to until the last season. It was pretty inevitable that they would end up together, since they had a kid and all, but it’s impossible not to melt when Steve tells her that she’s “the one” at Brady’s birthday party. Also, Miranda totally dismissed him for wanting to be a career bartender, and in the meantime he opens his own super successful bar.

3. Harry Goldenblatt

I’ve always been a sucker for Harry – the reason for his mid-range rating is because he wouldn’t marry Charlotte unless she converted to Judaism. I believe in soulmates and true love, but that really might have been a deal breaker for me. Regardless, he’s super sweet to her, despite how embarrassed she is of him when they first start dating. I love an underdog, and Harry is the ultimate.

4. Aiden Shaw

I know everyone loves Aiden, but there were some red flags about him from day one. He wouldn’t date Carrie because she was a smoker, and TBH he was pretty rude about it. The relationship was a low point for Carrie as well, since she cheated on him, but I always thought Aiden was pretty immature. He was constantly threatened by Big (maybe rightfully so), which came off as petty and childish. Oh, and he nearly booted Carrie from her apartment.

5. Trey MacDougal

Pretty bad. He and his mother were both totally unsupportive of Charlotte’s reproductive challenges, and were annoyingly traditional. Also, he claimed he was a “non-sexual person” and wouldn’t sleep with his WIFE, who caught him getting off to a dirty magazine in their bathroom. The only reason he’s not at the bottom of this list is because he let Charlotte keep that amazing apartment.

6. Jack Berger

Berger is the wooooorst. Threatened by Carrie’s success, listened to frog sounds to fall asleep, and totally hung up on his ex. And he broke up with her on a fucking post-it. Bye.

7. Big

If you’re not a seasoned SATC viewer, you probably think Big and Carrie’s relationship is super romantic. After close and careful analysis, I can safely say that this relationship was damaging and draining for both parties, more so for Carrie. Big obviously had serious commitment issues, but cast Carrie aside to marry 27-year-old Natasha. The only reason he’s not last is that he always encouraged and supported Carrie’s writing career.

8. Aleksandr Petrovsky

Carrie should have kept him as a “lover” and stopped him from moving on to boyfriend status. She candidly told him that she didn’t want to rule out having kids, and he shut her down. He convinced her to go to Paris and left her wandering Chanel and the streets alone. He was rude to her friends, caused her to miss deadlines, and made her eat lunch alone with his ex-wife.

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true life: my 9-5 is killing me

I have always craved stability. When I graduated from college, all I wanted in the world was a standard 9-5 job. Though I didn’t land my dream job, I made enough money to pay rent, ball out a little, and still had time to work on my side hustle. I’ve since upgraded to a new position, but still feel like something is missing from my life.

Totally opposite to my craving for stability is my desire for a life worth living–and a fear of “settling.” One full of adventure, envy-inducing Instagram posts, and stories that will shock my grandchildren in 50 years. While I feel so incredibly fortunate to even be employed, I still feel like something is missing. I wish so badly that I would be content working at a desk job and living the suburbs. Life would be so much easier, but I know that it would kill me a little bit.

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When I was still in school, I remember looking at people like Yoga Girl and Chelsie Antos, waiting for it to be my turn to teach yoga in Aruba or go RVing around America with my hot husband. While neither of those things specifically will probably ever happen to me, you get the idea. I wanted to be mildly responsible, get my degree, make some money, and then start exploring the world. Now, I want my life to have a little more purpose: for myself (selfishly), and for others (also kind of selfish).

Until I can start making big moves (i.e. waiting for my lease to run out), I would love to hear your ideas for keeping life exciting in the space between M-F, 9-5.

Follow new york is my boyfriend on Instagram.

**Check out my updated (and very professional) portfolio

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i found my voice…again

The only truly bad thing about getting paid to write is that something I have always enjoyed has turned into something I have to do. Budgeting time to turn everything in on time, following style rules of different publications, and being as professional as possible via email to make sure I get paid. I started tackling assignments with a mentality of “getting it over with,” a significant switch in mindset since I used to savor the time I spent working on this blog.

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My blog has always been a creative outlet. I can use as many Oxford commas and semi-colons as I want. And it’s gif galore up in here! The only opinion on this website is my own–though that sounds a lot more egotistic than I mean. For the second half of my American educational experience, my teachers consistently complimented my voice as a writer. I didn’t fully grasp what they meant at the time, but as I started peer-editing my classmates’ work and copy editing for the school paper, I started to understand. I want my writing to feel like a conversation. It is unpretentious, it should hopefully make you crack a smile. I like to think that if we met in person, my voice IRL would sound like the one that comes through here.

In churning out as much work as possible to make that $$$, I realized that I started cutting corners on authenticity, and my voice wasn’t as bright as it used to be. Thanks to some recent job changes on my part, I’ve had time to think about the kind of writer I want to be. And I sure as hell better be one with her own voice.

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the biggest thing NYC ruined for me

I always loved grocery shopping. Even after working at the local supermarket in high school and in the summer when I came home from college, I was never wary of the shiny linoleum aisles and well-stocked shelves.

This is because grocery shopping in a pleasant suburb is completely unlike shopping in New York. Suburban supermarkets get those cool, limited edition products (like peppermint Chobani) while NYC vendors sell crap you forgot existed (remember Kudos bars?). And then there are the prices. $7.99 for a half-gallon of ice cream. $4.99 for a gallon of milk. $7 for a carton of strawberries. All of these things are usually around $3 at my hometown grocery store.

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At the store in my hometown, you can push a full-sized shopping cart down each wide aisle, taking your time to choose the right items. You can buy 12-pack cans of soda, 16-count packs of paper towels, and other heavy items, knowing you just have to wheel them out to your SUV and drive home, traffic-free. In New York, I can only buy what I can carry (unless I spring for an Uber).

But it gets worse…the crowds! I have never found NYC to be overwhelmingly crowded, except in midtown during the holidays. Trader Joe’s on a Saturday afternoon is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. When I lived in Brooklyn, the TJ’s closest to me would sometimes have a line of people outside, waiting to go in. Inside the store, the line wraps through the aisles–you’re better off grabbing a basket, hopping in line, and shopping as you weave throughout the store. Whole Foods has an insane (but effective) color-coded system for sending shoppers to open registers, but there is almost ALWAYS a line.

People say that living in a city is worth it for its conveniences, but man, oh man, what I wouldn’t give for an afternoon at Market Basket.

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another year, another 3 resolutions

Well…2016 is finally coming to an end. I think a lot of people have mixed feelings about this past year–for me, it was definitely a rollercoaster. SO much has changed in the last twelve months. I graduated from college, got a 9-5 job, and moved twice. It’s kind of crazy how unprepared I felt for it all, and how many added responsibilities I now have.

2016 coming to an end has me thinking about where I’ll be this time next year. There are still a lot of things I want to do, like get a Master’s degree and live abroad (maybe I can combine these two…), so who knows if either of those will become a reality over the next twelve months.

This time of year is always overwhelming, between Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s eve, and my birthday (it’s a busy two months!), but I wanted to take time to make a list of my resolutions for 2017.

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1. Have dates with myself. I’ve found myself wistfully scrolling through Instagram and seeing cool gallery exhibits, pop-up eateries, and outdoor installations, yet never actually go to these things–even though tons of them are right here in NYC! I want to make more of an effort to actually go to these kinds of things, even if I can’t find someone else who wants to tag along.

2. Get my finances in order. I started working on this a few months ago when I realized that I have to pay taxes (yay, freelancing!). But I definitely want to get my expenses in order so I can invest and save the rest.

3. STOP CARING ABOUT BOYS! I literally sound like a broken record but I am so sick of spending time and energy on dead-end relationships. I promise to work on this so I can stop whining about it…

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nobody ever told me i couldn’t be whatever i wanted

America’s recent presidential election has sparked a number of discussions about race, gender, class, and privilege across the United States. Like any other country, ours has its flaws. As a woman in the United States, I will receive an unfairly short maternity leave when I decide to have babies. I will never make as much money as a man who does the same job as me. I will be scared to walk home alone at night regardless of how safe my neighborhood is. I will go to professional meetings where men will look at my breasts when they speak to me. I will be “asking for it” if I wear a short dress. I will be “hormonal” if something upsets me.

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I am not pretending that my life has been filled with hardship. I was lucky that my parents started saving money for my college tuition the day I was born. I was lucky that I grew up in a place where you don’t have to lock your doors. And I was lucky that nobody EVER told me that I couldn’t grow up to do or be whatever I wanted to.

To my parents, my sister and I are exempt from every negative thing you hear in the media about being female. To them, there is nothing we cannot do, even though we are women and will have to work twice as hard, look over our shoulders when we walk home at night, and be belittled over the course of our lives.

Because of this, they have no understanding of how terrified I am that someone accused of multiple sexual assaults has been elected president of a country I have loved and been proud of my entire life. Because of how hard they have worked, they believe that nothing bad will ever happen to us–and I am not allowed to be a victim. I am not allowed to talk about how many times things happened to me that I didn’t consent to; how many times my feelings were brushed aside; how many times I felt ashamed to be a woman.

I don’t consider myself a political person (and this blog is not a place for politics) but as someone who hopes to one day live in a peaceful world, it’s hard to remain silent.

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things to be thankful for any time of year

 

Last winter, I went kind of all-out with New Year’s resolution posts. Since we just celebrated Thanksgiving and we’re now approaching the end of 2016 (YIKES), I wanted to reflect on how I’ve tackled my goals as well on the kind of things we should resolve to do more often.

Last December, I resolved to keep doing me. I wanted to focus on being my best, happiest self, and have been trying to rid my life of all things toxic. I had an amazing 2015. I studied abroad, worked hard in school, and got an internship that helped me get to where I am today. So far in 2016, I had another incredible internship, graduated from college, and landed a great job. I’ve also been selling my writing and feel like I can finally say, with confidence, that I’m a writer.

I’m thankful for a lot of things when I wake up every day–I’m grateful I was able to stay in NYC after finishing school, I’m grateful that I get to work in an industry I’ve always dreamed of, I’m grateful that I’m healthy, and I’m grateful for the good things to come. Anyway, here are things we can all be thankful for, all the time.giphy-8

be thankful for…

Happy hour.

Whoever pays for your Netflix account. And just Netflix, in general.

Instagram filters.

Double star days at Starbucks.

Free shipping.

The pizza delivery guy who works rain or shine.

 

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Uncategorized

5 things i learned after 5 months of freelancing

Even though I have a regular 9-5 job working at a magazine I’ve always admired, my side hustle has been especially lucrative lately. I’ve been doing a lot of freelance writing, simultaneously bulking up my portfolio as a writer and making some extra spending money. There’s something wonderfully appealing about freelancing…you can work from home (or anywhere in the world with an Internet connection), have flexibility with deadlines, and get to write about things that interest you.

I know some people do this full time–I’m not sure I ever could, since the money varies month to month, but so far it’s been a great way for me to profit from something I’m passionate about–and something I’d literally be doing for free, anyway (cue: this blog). Here are five things I’ve learned since stepping up my freelance game in June.

1. It will take forever to get paid.

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Between waiting for invoices to be approved and checks to go in the mail, expect to wait a month until you see payment for your story.

2. Keep track of EVERYTHING.

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I write for multiple sites, and it quickly became difficult to keep track of who had paid me and who I still needed to send invoices to. I use Google Sheets to keep track of every story I sell, and note within this document which pieces have been invoiced and paid.

3. Follow up.

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Editors are busy–you’re probably one of many writers they deal with, so if you don’t hear back for a few days, don’t take it personally. Don’t be afraid to follow up…especially if they owe you money.

4. Use a dedicated workspace.

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Some people are good at working from home, and while I like the idea very much, I’m not one of them–though that may change once it gets colder and I don’t want to leave my apartment. If I have an overwhelming amount of work to do, I take my laptop to a local coffee shop and stay there until the battery dies.

5. Pitch as many ideas as you have.

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I send dozens of pitches a week, knowing that only a handful will get picked up. I’ve learned that I have a better chance of getting more stories picked up if I pitch more in the first place!

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sound bites

sound-bites

Things I found and loved on the Internet this week.

This post almost convinced me to give up drinking on Tinder dates.

Style rules from my all-time favorite comedienne.

My latest byline.

A photo tour of an incredible NYC apartment.

I’m a big fan of this comfy trend.

This recipe for perfect, creamy tomato soup.

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