this is progress.

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

airplane safety placard infant water flotation device lifevest

a pictorial dumpling recipe

Henlo, friends.

I’m writing this post with my feet propped up on a chair at the dining room table while I wait for the Chinese herbal tea simmering in the kitchen to reach its full potency. My runny nose and I are working our way through a box of tissues, the cat is using the living room as her personal racetrack while she yells continuously (a Big Mood™), and my partner is perched on the Korean War-era military footlocker trunk we use as a coffee table, playing Grand Theft Auto V.

Last week I was in New York City for only the second time in my life, tagging along on my boyfriend’s business trip. It was equal parts enthralling and exhausting to wander around Manhattan by myself, and by the fourth day, I was completely wiped out, partially because I’d spent the entire day prior wandering the Met until my soul was replenished and my feet were blistered, but mostly because my partner was working normal business hours, and it was damn tiring to be out and about and always watching my own stuff, my own drinks, my own back, always aware of how much time was left until sunset when I should stop being visibly alone in public. I admire women who travel solo. I don’t know how they do it.

But even though I spent the latter half of the trip Netflix-and-despairing in our hotel room (mainlining Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and short circuiting over the steaming pile of shit that is Brett Kavanaugh), I loved NYC in a way I haven’t ever loved anywhere but San Francisco – in a way that made me feel like I’d enjoy living there.

anal street - canal street subway - new york city mta

(insert “nyc i’m in you” joke)

(wow that was an unintended triple(?) entendre)

Granted, I haven’t traveled all that much, so there are probably plenty of diverse cities with solid public transportation systems that I’d enjoy spending my prime childbearing years in. London seems promising, for one.

But I don’t think I’d ever actually go through with it, not for anything less than the death of the people I love most and a disgustingly lucrative job. I am far too comfortable and too content and too scared to leave San Francisco any time soon.

And beyond the thicket of fear that is the prospect of uprooting my life here, of moving far enough away from my mom and my family and friends that the number of times I can expect to see them before they or I die dwindles from the hundreds into the dozens, is the insidious thought that I wouldn’t be able to survive in New York City unless I were working a high-paying tech job.

Then again, I don’t think I can survive in San Francisco unless I’m working a high-paying tech job either.

It’s too black and white to be true, the idea that I have to either have a tech job or die. (After all, why not both?)

But it feels true. I know it’s just a story I tell myself out of habit, and I’m working on finding a new angle, but it’s like every time I try to look at it directly, it goes blurry around the edges and I can’t hold it in my mind.

Every few days (or hours), I regret quitting my six-figure tech job, but I’m trying to remind myself how unequivocally awful it was to work at my previous company. Reading the wall of one-star reviews (including my own) on their Glassdoor page helps. So does repeating the words of men I’ve worked with – words like “I’m sorry” and “As I’ve heard more of the stuff that you had to deal with, I’m more and more surprised you stayed as long as you did.”

I can’t yet see a way forward that doesn’t involve either forcing myself into another tech job, or dying. I’m trying to remind myself that my emotions make sense. That my response was a reasonable one, and that if I don’t or can’t work in tech again, I’ll still be okay, somehow. That it’s possible I’ll recover my original enthusiasm for web development, given enough time and room to breathe. And that until then, my most important task is trying to not feel guilty or useless or like a waste of space. Or a human leech. Or a liability.

I’m trying, and sometimes it doesn’t work particularly well. (Especially not lately. It feels immorally self-indulgent to be contemplating my career when this country is hurtling back into the 1800s and this planet is hurtling toward total catastrophe.)

So to help myself, here’s a partial list of things I’ve done over the past month-ish that have made me feel like a productive human:

Read more…

29Rooms by Refinery29 – San Francisco: A Review

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

anothertoast - samglorious - overall dress outfit ootd - refinery29 29rooms - san francisco palace of fine arts exterior

As someone who doesn’t have an Instagram account, I’m not the kind of person you’d expect to pull the desperate move of using the spotty cell reception between MUNI stops to purchase tickets to an Instagram/selfie museum via my phone the minute they were released, but that’s exactly what I did in in early May, for the Saturday, June 23 session of Refinery29’s 29Rooms in San Francisco, at the Palace of Fine Arts.

Refinery29 describes 29Rooms as an “exhibition comprised of 29 unique spaces that showcase a range of creative disciplines, from poetry to painting to responsive technology,” featuring collaborations “with a broad range of artists, talent, and brands.” 29Rooms first launched in 2015, but this is the first time they’ve held their pop-up “multi-sensory playground” in San Francisco. The theme for this year’s 29Rooms is “Turn It Into Art.”

29rooms san francisco experience review - refinery29 - turn it into art - be the spark live with heart sign

I’d already been to the Color Factory back in March, which was a joyously self-centered experience well worth the price of admission. At $35 per person (before fees), the tickets to 29Rooms were comparable in price, and I was sure that Refinery29’s take on the “Instagram/selfie museums” that have been leaving their non-biodegradable mess of plastic sprinkles all over the city* would be a good one, given their track record of publishing solid fashion and lifestyle content.

*The Museum of Ice Cream can go suck an endangered Hawksbill Turtle egg for their environmentally irresponsible choices as well as their jerkwad move to ask small local businesses for donations of ice cream for “exposure”!!! My 15-year-old cousin who went to the Museum of Ice Cream also said it was kind of boring, so they can eat my entire ass.

(Honestly I’ve been reading a lot less Refinery29 these days than I used to because I feel like their content quality has decreased significantly since the early 2010s, but still. They’re cool! Or so I thought…)

Read more…

things i’m convincing myself not to buy (01.14.18)

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

For some reason, I’ve been really into coveralls/jumpsuits lately (and not so lately). Here are two from Forever21 that I’ve been convincing myself not to buy for a week now, as part of my no-spend attempt:

Forever21 jumpsuit - plunging sleeveless wide leg cropped

Plunging Wide-Leg Jumpsuit, $19.90

Forever21 snap button jumpsuit coveralls

Snap-Button Jumpsuit, $48

I would totally wear both of these jumpsuits/coveralls layered with turtlenecks like on the models, probably with Tevas or sneakers instead of heels, for maximum insouciance.

But in the meantime… I’ve got a pair of mom jeans I need to break in.

high-neck, high-waisted one-piece swimsuit of my goddang dreams

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

My partner and I are taking a quick trip to San Luis Obispo in a few weeks before he starts his new job, and I am PSYCHED to be taking a mini-vacation where I can spend most of the time half-naked instead of swaddled in layers of thermal underwear and puffer coats. (We’ve only been on trips together during the wintertime so far.)

For me, hot weather = flimsy bralettes and no underwire, so I was window shopping on Aerie as I am wont to do when I came across THESE AMAZING HIGH-NECK ONE PIECE SWIMSUITS:

aerie cutout ring one piece swimsuit maillot green

Cutout Ring One Piece Swimsuit in Team Green, $46.95 $40 at Aerie

Cutout Ring One Piece Swim Suit in Valentine, $52.95 $40 at Aerie

OhHhHhH my GOD. The high neck, the high waist, the torso cutouts!!! The green one feels kind of chic and modernized-retro, whereas the striped one honestly reeks of, like, the early 2000s to me, but in the best way?!

I already have a weakness for one-piece swimsuits/maillots because I think they’re way sexier than bikinis or two-pieces (plus you can actually swim in them), but I’m also particularly inclined to fall hard for high-necked swimsuit options because I have keloid scarring on my sternum area (from very mild pubescent acne that healed badly and scarred over into a few disproportionately large masses of raised scar tissue).

In the past I’ve just been like fuck it!!! I’ll wear whatever I want and people can avert their eyes if I’m too unsightly for them!!!, but the fact remains that my scars still get irritated and red and itchy and painful sometimes (a common complaint among people prone to keloids), and I am self-conscious about them.

That, plus the fact that scars sunburn more easily than other skin, plus the fact that owning a high-necked swimsuit that my boobs will actually stay put in would buy me a bit of mental freedom… seem to add up to I should buy at least one of these…

Shouldn’t I?

[EDIT: Reader, I bought them. They fit pretty well, although my bustline is quite low so I have to shove my boobs way up or else half of them hang out of the torso cutout. The fabric covering the torso also doesn’t lie perfectly flat on my body, but it helps the fit a lot if I tie the straps really tight. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Worth it.]

in which i fantasize about owning coveralls

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

Speaking of really goddang cool coveralls/jumpsuits, turns out Forever21 has these 2 great options below, in blush pink and olive green:

forever21 buttoned coverall jumpsuit - blush pink & olive drab green

Buttoned Coverall Jumpsuit in Pink and Olive, $37.90 at Forever21

The above coveralls/jumpsuits are the same cut and design, but it’s kind of amazing what a difference the color makes – the olive green one on the right is making me revisit my previous Coverall Imagine™ involving cars and explosions and fauxtor oil, whereas the barely-there blush pink one on the left would clearly be worn by either a sexy veterinarian/pet rescue worker with a soft spot for black cats and very large dogs, or your sexy assigned lab partner for ChemE whose hair you can’t help but notice always smells faintly of coffee and Flowerbomb by Viktor & Rolf, and whose color-coded notes she always lets you borrow because she’s both a straight-A student and a good person.

…Anyway. I want a pair of coveralls now.

(It’s Colin’s #colinfluence.)

colinfluence: topo designs

A couple weeks ago my coworker and our local devops babby* Colin showed up for work wearing the weirdest half-zip fleece I had ever seen, which automatically made it the coolest half-zip fleece I have ever seen, which isn’t actually saying much since all the half-zip fleeces I remember from my illustrious youth** are from Old Navy.

*He’s the same age as Augustus, who is also a babby, because he’s an entire year younger than I am.

**I mean, I’m still young, but I’m definitely no longer a Youth™. I have a 401k and the fine lines under my eyes get all “I’m Coming Out” if I don’t sleep enough.

After seeing him wear it a few times and repeatedly complimenting him on it (his #colinfluence), I BEGGED him to tell me where it was from, and he kindly obliged by linking me to Topo Designs, an outdoors-y bag and apparel brand based in Colorado, with multiple storefronts including one in San Francisco (on Divisadero).

This is the women’s version of the weird fleece I was so smitten with:

women's mountain fleece half-zip jacket - topo designs

Women’s Mountain Fleece in Sand/Teal, $149 at Topo Designs

women's mountain fleece half-zip jacket - topo designs

The colorblocking! That gorgeous teal, in contrast with that poop-like greenish-brown! The little yellow bits peeking out by the pocket and collar! The fact that I just realized this fleece is a half button-up and not a half-zip!

What a weird, wonderful look.

I also found this $189 jumpsuit which is way out of my price range but which I would wear the HECK out of, even if it would take me 10 minutes to pee:

black jumpsuit - topo designs - women's coverall

Women’s Coverall, $189 at Topo Designs

women's coverall - topo designs - jumpsuit

Someday (read: never, because I’m too fuckin cheap) I will own these coveralls, and I, too, will look like a sexy, mechanically-inclined sidekiq-cum-love-interest in a movie with lots of cars and explosions, and I, too, will share a passionate kiss with the hero/heroine whilst my face is artfully smudged with faux motor oil, or fauxtor oil, if you will.

(For anyone who knows me 2 well, yes, I am 100% blogging about insubstantial things to make up for how tired I am IRL right now. More to come, pals. For now, I need a long-ass sleep while I consider dropping $75 on the men’s version of that fleece since it’s on sale…)