Tattoos. So many people have them nowadays, from the guy washing your dirty dishes at the diner to your doctor scratching out prescriptions. While body art still has rebellious connotations it doesn’t have quite the stigma that it used to, thanks to so many celebrities, athletes and plain-old average people getting more and more work done. Heavy helpings of ink are beginning to seem like the norm, making it feel almost mischievous not to get one. And while many employers aren’t keen on body art in the workplace the rules have changed drastically in the past few years as tattoos become more mainstream than ever.
Black Friday! Are you excited? Did you camp out in front of an electronics store this morning? Are you already stressed about finding the perfect gift for every single person that you are in direct daily contact with?
I’m not, and here’s why: About 95 percent of Americans celebrate Christmas, regardless of their denomination. But guess what, I’m the 5 percent. Yup, there is no Santa pulling a reindeer in my front yard, no Christmas tree in my living room and instead of waking up early to open up presents I prefer to sleep in and enjoy the extra day off. Bah humbug? Suit yourself.
Apparently, many of us dread switching hairdressers even more than breaking up with a boyfriend.
I recently switched salons — nothing personal, but I just decided I wanted a change. My haircuts were great but I felt like I was getting the same cut over and over again. Perhaps I wasn’t vocal enough in my need for something new but I got a gift certificate for services at another salon so I used it as an excuse to try a new stylist and I kind of felt guilty about about the switch.
Remember when winning the science fair was a big deal? Remember when being a state spelling bee champ garnered your name in the newspaper? I grew up pre-Internet, back when MTV still stood for Music Television and it was where I’d sneak watching the latest videos from Nirvana and Smashing Pumpkins when I was really supposed to be doing homework.
Everyone wants to support local businesses, right? I mean, how can you not love that mom and pop store that’s been on the same corner for 20 years or the boutique business owner that remembers your name every time you come in? Personally, I want to spend my money at that new, tucked-away shop and my old favorites just the same and I always recommend new restaurants and quaint boutiques to my friends so they can discover these places as well. But if I have a less-than-stellar experience somewhere, chances are I’ll pass that information on as well. Unfortunately, not all establishments are made equal and some provide truly awful customer service.
In the fashion world, designers constantly gain inspiration from various cultures and time periods, generally going unnoticed until someone steps out of line and heads towards the irreverent. Have your ever worn a kimono, kente cloth, or a pair of moccasins? If so, you borrowed an aesthetic and cultural reference from another ethnicity, intentionally or not. So what’s so inappropriate about a little cultural borrowing if we all do it from time to time? Similar to buying a New Orleans voodoo doll made in China, the differences between appreciation vs. appropriation are often blurry for those unfamiliar with the culture.
Halloween is a half a month away — are you prepared? I’m on the lookout for costumes year ‘round, and this past year was no exception. Even though I won’t wear all of it this season, I bought two outrageous hats, one hoop skirt, and a handful of miscellaneous pieces and those were just my 2011 purchases.
Missed Connections are quite possibly the most modern and interesting way to reconnect with kindred spirits who slipped away. There’s no more wondering if your paths will cross again: Thanks to Craigslist, you are in control of your own fate!
For those unfamiliar with the service, “Missed Connections” is a classifieds section for lost love. It’s a shot in the dark, a way to reconnect with the potential lover you locked eyes with over the cold cuts at Winn-Dixie or the girl that forgot to scribble her number down for you after that all nighter at Snake & Jakes. You are only a click, witty title, and a passionate paragraph away from your destiny! Even if you aren’t looking for that “cute brunette in Coliseum Square” it can be fun to scroll through and read the posts. Some are sad, some are scandalous, but all of them are a tiny window into a missed romantic opportunity.
When I was in college I got sucked into the world of fine dining. I started out looking for a job, one that would work with my class schedule and provide me with enough cash to pay rent, buy books for school and leave me with some extra spending money. Being a waitress was the perfect fit: Just like any career, the profession certainly had its pros and cons, but I can’t think of any that are quite so colorful.
If you live in New Orleans proper, chances are you or someone you know might suffer from being ‘hood bound. You know the type, the friend that you who won’t meet you for happy hour because they’d have to make a 10-minute drive. Or what about the guy who complains about how much of a trek the Bywater is from Uptown? People become restricted to their neighborhood for a number of reasons. Transportation issues, sheer laziness, or just the convenience factor are all factors that play into turning into a hyper-local. I’m definitely all too familiar with the n‘hood rat mentality because I suffer from periodic bouts of it myself.
I’m not ashamed to admit it: I’m a full-fledged lover of True Blood. I resisted watching the show initially since Twilight fans are so, well, annoying in their fanaticism, for lack of a more eloquent term, but my sister insisted that I try True Blood solely based on its Louisiana setting. I’ve been hooked ever since the first episode, and now I’m anxiously awaiting Season Five. (Which, by the way, how could they end Season Four like that and expect us to wait nine months for the next one?)
OK, I’ll admit it. When it comes to groceries, all bets are off. The one thing that my husband and I splurge on every week is food. We don’t dump out the contents of our wallets at expensive department stores, we don’t drive fancy cars, and I can’t tell you the last time I was in a casino, but damn can we get busy in the grocery store. Taleggio cheese? Check. Ice cream made from goat milk? Oh, yeah, now you’re talking.
These days you’d be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t participate in at least one form of social media. Social networking is whatever you put in to it. For some loquacious users it can be a platform to voice their opinion or, for others, just a way to keep up with friends. Whatever the use, it is a powerful tool when used correctly so it’s important to represent yourself in the best way you can. Personally, I’m the most active on Twitter and will browse through my Facebook on a daily basis. Twitter is a great resource both for individuals and businesses alike: At this point, I’ve made so many business connections on Twitter that sending my resume just seems so 2005.
Just about everyone loves a good bargain, myself included. It’s a really satisfying feeling when you score a great deal, but just because something is cheap doesn’t mean it is a smart purchase. It doesn’t matter if I spend $1 or $100, if I didn’t use the product or care for the service, then I feel like I wasted my money.
Oh, August, why do you have to be so damn hot? Even though I haven’t been a student in quite some time, August always feels like the unofficial summer wind-down as kids go back to school and thoughts shift to fall wardrobes. However we all know that we’ve got at least two, possibly three more months of pool time. This is also the time of year that I get fed up with all of my warm weather clothes since I’ve been wearing the same things since April. It proves more and more difficult not to leave the house just wearing flip flops and cut off shorts but for vanity’s sake I resist.
Complaining about not having anything to do in New Orleans on the weekend is like being that bratty, spoiled child grandma overindulged with toys and just wants more. I suppose it’s all relative, though, when you are nestled in a city known for its nightlife. While the list of bars and nightclubs is immeasurable, it is sometimes hard to find something that isn’t either a smokey dive bar to catch a live band or a raucous nightclub where the music is bumping. Not that there’s anything wrong with that (to borrow a line from Seinfeld), but lately I’ve really been in the mood for a laugh, and New Orleans’ growing comedy scene is exactly what this city needs.
I’ve lived in the same neighborhood off and on for the past 10 years, but I only really started meeting the neighbors when I got a dog. Last year, my husband and I decided to welcome a retired athlete into our home. Her name is Nadia, a brindle greyhound rescued from a race track in Alabama. Greyhounds have been bred for speed for centuries, often running up to 40 miles per hour. That said, her new life with us is split between lazily lounging around the house or sprinting in the yard like a maniac. I’m waiting for her to take down the wooden gate one day just from momentum alone.
I remember stumbling upon a quote once that said if you are a fashion person then you can’t be an interior design person. Well, I certainly prove whoever said that right. I’m pretty much immersed in fashion all day long. I work with clothes at my full time job, come home and write about them for my fashion blog and do the same for freelance work that I pick up on the side. Just from osmosis alone I’d like to think that I do a pretty good job dressing myself. If only I could take an issue of Elle Decor and do the same for my (lack of) interior design prowess.
There is something special about biking around town that makes you feel more connected to the city than if you were commuting in a car. I bike to work most days and to anyone new in town, my immediate question is, “Did you buy a bike yet?”
Here in New Orleans a bike equals freedom. No parking, no paying for gas and minimal costs for repairs means this is an economical way to get around town. Aside from the health benefits of getting a workout it is also a fun way to get to know the city in a more intimate way. I have a car but my preferred method of transportation is my mountain bike. I love varying my route to work and serendipitously stumbling upon an interesting sculpture in someone’s front yard or noticing a new sandwich shop for the first time.