After five packed days back in NYC, it’s safe to say it’s a good thing I no longer live there. My skin, liver, wallet and waistline desperately needed a break from the city that never sleeps. Side note: I, too, apparently never sleep while there. Good thing I’ve got an SNL-laden tribute this week to keep spirits high in my disoriented state.
- Trump’s Halloween “Apprentice” Promo: OK, so this is obviously a throwback to when Darrell Hammond was the king of impersonating Donald Trump, and not Alec Baldwin. It’s kind of eerie to watch it back now, as Trump is now one of our candidates for President, and the impression is dead-on. I recall giggling endlessly at his attempt at an evil laugh, so I hope you’ll enjoy it, too.
- Ashlee Simpson’s Lip-sync Hoedown: In that very same episode, Ashlee Simpson gave us a dance to remember forever. She delivered hit single “Pieces of Me” just fine in the first performance, but in her second shot at the stage, that same song — with vocals — began playing. What would I do in that situation? God only knows. But her awkward jig is burned into our brains, so I hope I would have come up with something a little less memorable.
- Melaniade: Of particular relevance with the impending election was last week’s pre-filmed short, featuring the women in Donald Trump’s life taking him down (and taking him back) à la Beyoncé. If this doesn’t make you laugh, I don’t know what will. It also might make you cringe, but hey, that’s kind of what SNL does best.
- Bruno Mars Is “24K Magic”: I was disappointed to see Emily Blunt hosting last week — not because she married John Krasinski and I loathe her for it — but because I’ve always enjoyed Bruno Mars as a host/musical guest, and he was just singing this time. The thing is, though, he’s never just singing. He’s a performer through and through, and his dynamic dancers put on quite the show.
The SF Giants blew a big lead last night, ending their postseason aspirations and the (admittedly annoying but fun-to-use) #BeliEVEN streak. A close friend is leaving my company. Another close friend is leaving California. I started my day explaining sexism to a stranger on Facebook, who — of all weeks to do it — made a chauvinistic comment about me on a friend’s status.
What’s the best way to get out of a slump? I find it helps to help others. It provides perspective and reminds me there are MUCH bigger problems in the world than mine. Here are some ideas:
- Help Devastated Haiti: Hurricane Matthew spared most of my friends and family, thank God, but the impoverished Haitian nation was deeply affected. While I’m not the biggest fan of all of these charities, The Weather Channel’s site lists a bunch of ways to help send relief to a country still recovering from a 2010 earthquake.
- Walk to End Alzheimer’s: You may recall my plea back in January to #BringDuaneHome, as my friend Dierdre’s family fought for custody of their longtime foster child. While they’ve made leaps in that struggle, Deirdre’s dad is now fighting Early Onset Alzheimer’s. Her family will walk on October 29 and raise money to help find a cure. I can’t imagine the pain of a parent not remembering, and I can’t think of more selfless people than Deirdre’s family. You can click here to help.
- Ken Bone Needs a New Suit: If you have any money left to spare, throw a couple coins to Sunday night’s debate hero: Ken Bone. His snazzy red sweater became the talk of Twitter, but it wasn’t his first choice for wardrobe. Turns out his olive suit split in the pants on his way to the debate! Help Ken Bone get a new suit, won’t you?
- “Welcome to My House” – Flo Rida: My mom’s house — and countless others — were on my mind a lot the past week with Hurricane Matthew on his way. Naturally, this song came to mind. Bonus points because Flo Rida’s name on its own calls to mind many memories. Who doesn’t hear this and just automatically want to dance?
Hurricane Matthew seems to have its sights set on the east coast of Florida. As my family and friends batten down the hatches, I’m using these distractions to weather the storm updates. Stay safe out there — lifelong Floridians are great at ignoring dramatic predictions, but this one looks like it could actually be a doozy.
- Lisa Frank on FB: What better return to childhood nostalgia than your favorite rainbow and animal enthusiast sharing Facebook updates? From recipes to products to memes and more, the posts always bring a smile to my face. Absolutely fabulous!
- Grape Stomping: One of my work teams had our quarterly outing yesterday, this time with grape stomping at Grgich Hills Estate. We tasted wines elsewhere, too, but this was easily the highlight of the day. Stomping away in barrels (while accidentally dressed as twins) was the perfect activity for a team-building Tuesday.
- “The Help”: I recently found this bestseller in a thrift store for just $1, so I promptly brought it home to enjoy. It took about four nights of voracious reading — it’s that well-written — to devour this story of black maids in 1960s Mississippi. Bonus: Comcast had the movie showing for free, so I indulged in that after the final chapter. If you haven’t read it, I strongly recommend… especially with today’s racial landscape. It’s eerily scary to the
- SNL Is Back: With its biggest premiere audience in eight years, it’s clear America loves Donald Trump. Or at least, loves Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump. The highly anticipated debate parody was just the beginning and — although I feel like real life is sadly funnier — I’m excited to see what else they’ll come up with the circus, I mean, election.
I’m still coming down off the San Franniversary high, thanks — in large part — to you all. The love and support you’ve shown is immeasurable, and I’m grateful for the constant journey we’re taking together.
Someone who’s been on this journey with me for 12 years now is Jenny, my high school bestie. She’s visiting this week, and it’s been so fun showing her around SF. Despite the 2,000 miles that normally separate us, we can always pick up right where we left off.
Whether it’s exploring new cities and having adventures or just watching football and playing drinking games, we always know how to find fun (and get into trouble) together. And, we’re always the ones laughing obnoxiously louder than everyone else — in the same cadence — because we’re obviously hilarious together.
So this week’s obsessions are dedicated to our friendship, because without her, I don’t know where I’d be. Bonus: It’s our third member of the tripod, Christina’s, birthday week! We’re missing her like crazy but raising a glass to her tonight🙂
Today marks my second San Franniversary, so I thought I’d share some of the lessons I’ve learned since moving here. Bonus: It’s apparently (and arbitrarily) San Francisco Appreciation Week! If I’m missing anything, I’m sure you’ll all let me know😉
1. Never, ever, EVER call it “San Fran.”
I realize I broke this cardinal rule in the very title of this post, but I believe a pun makes it OK. (I haven’t gotten an eye-roll yet in my empty apartment, at least.) For some reason, SF residents absolutely cannot stand calling their beloved city “San Fran.” It’s “SF” (pronounced “ess eff”) or “The City” (though I still save that for NYC). And I’m guilty of the hatred toward “Saaan Fraaan,” too. It strikes a nerve, sounds sooo country and feels like a betrayal to the Bay Area. Even worse: “Frisco.” *shudders*
2. There won’t be a heat wave in August.
It goes against everything you’ve ever been taught, but bring sweaters and jeans if you visit SF in August. With an average temperature this year of 58°F, you’ll thank me later. Easiest way to spot tourists here each August? They’re wearing overpriced Golden Gate Bridge sweatshirts from Fisherman’s Wharf, because they figured it’d be hot like everywhere else. On the flip side, September and October are our warmest months. I don’t make the rules; I’m just sharing them.
3. NorCal is very different from SoCal.
I haven’t personally experienced Southern California yet, but I’ve heard enough comparisons to feel confident in this lesson. NorCal is bourgie and techy, chilly and pretentious — while SoCal is beachy and sprawling, warm and pretentious in a different way. Also: Don’t expect me to “pop down” to San Diego or LA while you’re there on a weekday, since they’re 400+ miles away. I still love you, though🙂
4. We work smarter, not harder.
Work/life balance is a constant topic of conversation here, almost to a fault. I haven’t worked in the smallest of startups — so there is some variation — but for the most part I believe SFers find efficiencies in their work, suggest changes to organizations’ processes and don’t have to prove their worth by how many hours they work. We value getting in, getting shit done and getting out to live life away from office walls.
5. We take our wine and our sports seriously.
This should come as no surprise, given electric playoff seasons from the Golden State Warriors, San Francisco Giants,and San Jose Sharks — plus the recent resurgence of the Oakland Raiders. Even the 49ers and A’s fans are fiercely loyal. And while wine and sports don’t necessarily go hand in hand, you can’t be just south of Wine Country and not have a strong appreciation for vino. Cheers to that.
6. Oakland is SF’s cooler cousin — and kinda too cool for me.
I haven’t explored nearly as much of Oakland as I’d like to, but what I have seen has been mostly awesome. The Fox Theater is a phenomenal concert venue, there are awesome restaurants and bars to try all over Downtown, Lake Merritt and more. Get comfortable with the BART map first, though, as I’ve gotten turned around and spent way more time on the train than is ever necessary for one human.
7. Trolleys are not the same as cable cars.
This is a lesson I’m still learning, as anyone within earshot is quick to correct me when I mistakenly identify a trolley (or streetcar) as a cable car. The key difference is how they’re propelled, which is exactly why I can’t seem to keep them straight. All I really know is, both types are adorable and strangely efficient forms of transportation — provided you avoid the stops at each end of the cable car lines.
8. Public transportation is laughable.
Ask me two years ago, and I’d say I would never, ever miss the MTA. But being out here, I miss the subway nearly every damn day. MUNI is inefficient, dealing with traffic and breakdowns and shitty people who refuse to follow the rules. BART is a hot mess of its own. And while I understand this city wasn’t built for the massive influx of people, it’s frustrating to feel like there aren’t any major changes in sight for affordable, efficient, reliable public transportation.
9. Uber, Lyft and Chariot are godsends… mostly.
It’s no wonder, then, we freaking love rideshare and shuttle services. Since Uber and Lyft were founded here, we’re often a test market for new features (and promos!) before they’re rolled out nationwide. I relied heavily on UberPool with my last job, since my 2.5-mile commute would take more than 50 minutes on MUNI. I’m now blessed with transportation reimbursement from my employer, so a shuttle service like Chariot (also founded in SF) makes commuting and getting around SF a breeze.
10. SF is a fantastic place to live.
There are plenty of challenges living in a big city with rich history and recent gentrification. It’s easy to take it for granted, but it’s truly become my favorite home. Whether making jokes about Karl the Fog; braving tourists on Golden Gate Bridge; or enjoying the quirky, eclectic local vibes, SF will always have a special place in my heart.
I had an influx of ideas for obsessions this week, probably because I’ve been on a spree of volunteer and social events lately. The good news? There’s no stopping in sight. The bad news? I’m running on about five hours of sleep and am not entirely sure this will all make sense😛
- #Brangelina … Meanwhile, Amal Fights ISIS: I was in an inevitable BuzzFeed rabbit hole last night and, naturally, read George Clooney’s off-guard response to the #Brangelina divorce. I was extremely proud to see the related article BuzzFeed suggested was about Amal Clooney (née Alamuddin) and her fight against ISIS. Talk about girl power.
- AOII Alumnae in San Francisco: In case it wasn’t painfully obvious in yesterday’s post, I’ve thrown myself into some social organizations recently. I’m thrilled to join my sorority’s alumnae board in SF as Vice President, and I’ve already enjoyed getting to know more sisters in the area. Check out our FB page to see what we’re up to and learn more🙂
- Junior League of San Francisco: Another fantastic organization I’ve joined as a Provisional (first-year) member is the Junior League of SF. From volunteering to social events and community programs, I couldn’t be more pleased to be connected to such an inspirational group of women.
- “Closer” – Chainsmokers f. Halsey: In my humble opinion, any song that inspires a flood of memes is worth a listen. I swear, I’m not into EDM — I’m too old for it anyway. But with a catchy beat and ridiculously fun lyrics, this one’s getting played out like it’s my damn job.
There there, stock photo girl.
Down in the dumps after being dumped? Dry those mascara tears and listen up: This step-by-step guide guarantees* you’ll win the breakup (which should obviously be your top priority).
Step 1: Get dumped. If you must do the breaking-up, fine, but know you won’t win any sympathy points if you’re the dumper. On the flip side, bonus sympathy points if you’re dumped the night before a couples’ trip for your birthday.
Step 2: Debate internally about posting a public statement. Decide not to, then regret it every time yet another friend asks about your (ex) significant other. Feel like a total dick until you finally post a public blog about it.
Step 3: Feel like a total dick for posting a public blog about it.
I think I just found my Halloween costume.
Step 4: Say “yes” to all social activities. Join local organizations, such as Junior League or your sorority’s alumnae board. Volunteer. Go to the gym. Attend concerts. Get out of the damn house.
Step 5: Create a girl-power playlist. Yes, even if you’re a dude. If you’re too lazy to create one — like you’re sooo busy now — borrow one.
Step 6: Watch “The First Wives Club.” Watch it again. Put on a white skirt- or pantsuit. If you haven’t sashayed and belted out “You Don’t Own Me,” what kind of monster are you?
Step 7: Take this BuzzFeed quiz to see if you are, in fact, winning the breakup. No matter the result, you can pretend you got this:
Step 7a: DO NOT POST YOUR QUIZ RESULTS.
Step 8: Try your damndest to be genuinely happy for them and find happiness in yourself, too. Understand that your time will come — or it won’t — but feeling sorry for yourself isn’t going to help anyone, least of all you.
Did I miss any crucial steps? What are your tips for surviving a breakup, let alone “winning” one? Let me know in the comments below!
*Oh, honey. No guarantees.