What It Means to be a Bitch

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How would you define a “bitch:” a female dog, an irritating girl, a powerful woman? Although evasive, “bitch” is most commonly used as a derogatory reference to women. However, women and girls alike must realize that we aren’t small, pestering people; we’re strong and confident, we’re smart and we are powerful, and that’s precisely why we’re bitches. We’re bitches in the new sense of the word: independent, badass, unafraid women asserting ourselves, getting what we’ve worked for and what we deserve. While once a term for prostitutes, “bitch” has a new, essential meaning for modern women (Justin). Today, bitches are confident, successful, individualistic women. We can no longer allow stereotypes of women as subordinate to penetrate our daily language. The word “bitch” has been used as violent language in the past to discourage women from asserting themselves as strong, commanding, and independent people, but now we’re taking it back.

            Bitch can take on a variety of meanings based on context, some positive and some negative. Greek origins of the word explain “bitch” as having a long history of demeaning women and connoting weakness with femininity (Bayley). Now, in its insulting contexts, the term is used to describe women as irritating or unpleasant. Further, “bitch” is used violently in hip-hop and rap culture to depict women as sexual objects. The word “bitch” dominates rap language and derogatively categorizes women as prostitutes, and generalizing all women as promiscuous (Justin). In one popular song from 2001, rap artist Ludacris yells, “Move bitch, get out the way, get out the way bitch, get out the way” (Bayley). We cannot interpret these lyrics as anything but derogatory toward women. These lyrics exemplify how “bitch” can be used as violent and destructive language in certain cultural arenas. Although “bitch” is still used violently by some, women have made huge progress in redefining what it means to be a bitch.

“Bitch” has become a transient swear word, devoid of meaning – indicated only by context. Today, bitches are strong women. While some continue to use “bitch” as a violent insult, others reclaim the word by using it interchangeably with positive descriptions of women. One example of this is a popular dieting book-turned-movement, “Skinny Bitch”. A New York Times Bestseller, the Skinny Bitch diet is not the only cultural phenomena making “bitch” popular, or positive. Women also read self-help books called “The Bitch Switch,” drink varieties of Sassy Bitch Wine, and knit at Stitch ‘n Bitch clubs (Bayley, Williams). Furthermore, these “bitch” titles specifically target and appeal to women. We’re self-identifying as bitches and redefining women as un-intimidated and unstoppable.

Bitches are no longer women outcast by society. As many agree, it is nearly impossible for a woman to not be a bitch. One author eloquently challenges society to define a woman who is not considered a bitch:

What is a non-bitch? She is like the Unicorn, a myth, a dream that men have dreamed, the ultimate in compliant beauty, who never gives a fella any trouble. She is always nice and understanding, never angry, doesn’t argue, doesn’t protect herself, her property or her children. She is always complimentary, remembers every detail about everything, never hurts feelings intentionally or unintentionally, always serves others first, always smiles and does what everyone asks of her, all the time, with no complaint. I’m sure I’ve left something out but since I’m a bitch, I’m allowed to make mistakes. (Snortland)

A bitch is not one specific thing, and is defined by idealized versions of women and their behaviors.

Nowadays, attempting to use bitch violently is ineffective because the word has lost its derogatory meaning, largely thanks to its colloquial use in society. “Bitch” is used to describe women so often that it has lost any substantial meaning. As aforementioned, the word once represented women who were considered overly sexual. However, in today’s culture, using “bitch” as an insult for women is opting for the default, lacking a better, more descriptive insult that could actually offend us. Women are labeled “bitches” when they don’t do what other people want. Consider the example of a man calling Ellen Snortland a “bitch” when she “very politely declined to let him cut” in line at the grocery store (Snortland). You can decide for yourself, but I don’t consider this rude or unreasonable, and know many men who would have done the same thing as Snortland. Yet, because she is a woman, the default insult is to call her a bitch. In today’s day, “bitch” can mean anything, which is ironically why it is becoming less and less insulting with each use. Now that we’ve all been called bitches, likely in multiple different scenarios, we’re no longer trying so hard to disassociate from this stereotypical term. Modern women care less about being bitches; it’s so common and casual to be one, or to be called one, that we are not phased and can’t be bothered to dwell on such petty insults.

Some may wonder if we should be eliminating the use of the word to combat negativity towards women and assert our non-bitchiness, our non-marginalization as a gender. But women are not simply accepting their roles as bitches; rather, we are changing what it means to be one. With female presidential candidates and celebrity role models like Beyoncé, women are more confident, powerful, and inspiring now than ever before. In the Bitch Manifesto, written in the 1960s during second-wave feminism, author Joreen sets the precedent for the freedom we bitches enjoy today:

As Bitches begin to take jobs, or participate in organizations, they are rarely content to sit quietly and do what they are told. A Bitch has a mind of her own and wants to use it. She wants to rise high, be creative, assume responsibility. She knows she is capable and wants to use her capabilities. (Joreen)

Bitches are women increasingly motivated to be successful, intelligent, independent, and, oh yea, look great while doing it. We are no longer held back by fears of being “bitches” in the eyes of our counterparts or society.

Let’s keep being bitches; let’s say “bitch” whenever we want. Doing so, we won’t degrade ourselves or other women; we’re redefining a word that once hurt us. Today, we use bitch in a new way, as “a rallying cry, a signal to women that these things that have hurt us can be changed for the better” (Bayley).We are no longer that “bitch” who’s being told to “get out the way”. Now we are “bad bitches,” who run cities, head companies, and oversee men. We are women unafraid to redefine who and what society has historically perceived us to be.

So, I invite you to call me a bitch. You can call me a bitch for cutting you off in traffic, but I wont be phased by your lack of insulting vocabulary. I’m a modern day bitch: a smart, hard-working, opinionated woman, and I’m not afraid to be who I am for you or the entire world to see. I welcome you to call me a bitch because of my high-profile job, my standout resume, or let’s not forget- my wardrobe. So call me a bitch, because it’s all about how you interpret it, and I’m damn proud to be one.

Works Cited

Bayley, Clare. “Bitch: A History.” Clare Bayley. N.p., 2 June 2011. Web. 02 Apr. 2014.

Joreen. “The Bitch Manifesto – Documents from the Women’s Liberation Movement.”

The Bitch Manifesto. Pittsburg: Know, Inc., Apr. 1997. Web. 5 Apr. 2014.

Justin. “B*TCH, PLEASE! How to Use the Word “Bitch” Correctly.” Real Life English

RSS. N.p., 07 May 2012. Web. 02 Apr. 2014.

Rhiannon, Payne. “On Kanye West, Feminism, And The Word ‘Bitch’.” Feminspire.

N.p., Sept. 2012. Web. 09 Apr. 2014.

Snortland, Ellen. “Bitch, Bitch, Bitch.” On The Issues 4.2 (1995): 60. ProQuest. Web. 9

Apr. 2014.

Williams, Marcus A. “There’s a Time and Place to be a ‘Bitch’.” Afro – American Red Star: 2. Nov 2008. ProQuest. Web. 9 Apr. 2014 .

Stylenomics: The Most Recent LA Style Chronicle

IMG_4045Snakeskin Aviators (Tory Burch), Drop Earrings (Seasonal Whispers), Jacket (Free People), Baby Pink Tee (Rubbish), Dark Jeans -not pictured (J Brand), Black Smoking Flat – not pictured (Me Too). Worn for morning meetings before the start of the semester, followed by shopping for the new apartment.

IMG_4116For a day lunching and shopping in Santa Monica with old friends and new.   Black Stretch Tank (Sugarlips), Sheer Maxi Skirt (Cuesta Blanca, ARG), Black Sandals with gold embellishment -not pictured (Dolce Vita)

IMG_4183First Week of Class – Note: very east coast/ try-hard.  I had not quite adjusted to the laid back Cali yet.   Polka Dot Skater Dress (Urban), Waist Belt with Gold Clasp (Francescas), Ankle Strap Braided Sandal (Sperry).

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Saturday Mornings on Skype.  Muscle Tee (topshop), grey bandeau (local boutique), snakeskin pajama pants.

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Friday Night: Dinner at a Pizza Bar on Fig with a friend, followed by some casual beers with friends upstairs. Black Slitted Maxi (Tobi), Printed Crop Tank (Topshop), Black sandals -not pictured (DV), Light Jean Jacket – not pictured (Kut for Nordstrom). As a side note: messy waves in a side pony is the new hairstyle.

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Morning Chemistry Lecture followed by Organic Lunch with friends. Black Stretch Cami (Sugarlips), tucked into Maxi Overlay Skirt with Olive shorts underneath (Mimi Chica), and a no name Cream Cardi.  New Kate Spade phone case; you can also see the maxi overlay pattern here.

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Class during the Heat Wave. Paisley Wave Tank (tobi), Black Bandeau (344), Skinny Ankle Jean – cuffed here (Level 99, Anthropologie), Slim Flip Flops in Metallic Gold with brown print bottoms (Havaianas).IMG_4524

Yea, its a snapchat.  Game Day is a big thing, so this is my latest purchase in the pursuit of school spirit.  Because I cant go without a little drama, the tank was paired with Oxblood Paige Shorts, Black Crystal Havaianas, and of course, The Snakeskin Tory’s. #FightOn

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You’ve seen this one before- east coast meets west. Slouchy Crop Moto Jacket (Free People), Cream Stretch Tank (Sugarlips), Hi-Lo Skirt with lining and thigh Slit (Mimi Chica), Flip Flops (Havaianas).  IMG_4584Haha, I give you this half for kicks. Nude nails for a change, blonde coffee with pumpkin spice.  I’m in Spanish Class. #FightOn

IMG_4674 Screen Shot 2013-09-21 at 8.13.52 PMGoing out on a Friday, and experimenting with a red lip (Benetint Lip Stain in the purple-ly shade, not the orange one).  Black Smoking Flat (Me Too), Dark Boot Cut Jean (J Brand), Black Bralette (Victoria’s Secret Pink), Open Back Winged Cheetah Top (Ten Sixty Sherman).

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Thursday Classes – we’re anxious for the weekend. Black Sandals with Gold Accents (Dolce Vita), Black Maxi Skirt with Slit (Tobi), Graphic LO-VE tee (LOFT, ARG).  Never leave the house without a layering piece; if you havent noticed, the FP jacket is my go-to. IMG_4788

Bracelets go with every outfit. No one has them here, so they’re even better (Alex and Ani). IMG_4868 IMG_4870 IMG_4871

Friday night: beers and Nat Geo before bars. Grey Jacket (Americanino, ARG), Red Wine Transparent Top (Painted Threads), Reversible Recycled Leather Belt (Handmade Artisan), Black Cami -underneath (Sugarlips), Printed Skinny Laser Jean (7 for All Mankind), Smoking Flat (Me Too).IMG_4895Saturday Studies, with red wine and movies as a reward at the end of the night. Black Thick Knit Cardi (Rubbish), Long Sleeve Illuminati Top (Muah!, ARG), Dark Jean (J Brand), Slim Gold Flip Flop (Havaianas). 

 

We’ve come a long way from Stonington, CT.  Promise to keep updating xoxo 

 

Lost in the Ghetto: A Conquest

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Being my second day alone in my new apartment, I decided to leave the safety of the resort in pursuit of none other than…. Wait for it… a liquor store. I debated asking someone here but the human interaction seemed too hard so Siri found one for me instead.  The thought crossed my mind that although .2 miles away, Aki Liquor could be in a bad neighborhood.

After walking one block, all of the Caucasian people had disappeared.  Still I wrote this off as a coincidence, reminded myself it was 3:30 in the afternoon and I wanted a damn glass of wine (is that too much to ask for???)

A few blocks later, I spotted the store, but was stopped by a tall, black woman, who I’d guess was 70 and a crack addict based on her lack of teeth.  Also, she was a fucking weirdo, but I’ll get to that.  As she pleaded for ten cents (what’re you going to do with ten cents anyway…), I beelined for the “liquor store.” Honestly, the result was pathetic.  There were three varieties of white, and even in the most desperate situations they were deemed undrinkable. I asked the Asian Woman behind the glass window at the counter (RED FLAG: I repeat: behind the glass window) where there was another store but couldn’t understand her response.  Before leaving the store, I asked a Mexican patron if he could direct me; he was high and wanted my phone number. I loudly asserted the existence of my boyfriend.  At this point, a friendly (but large) black man intervened, trying to give me directions. Here’s another issue: everyone gives driving directions.  When said black man, Dwayne, found out I didn’t have a car, he said he would just take me there, which I thought meant walking, but he actually meant in his car.  Before getting into his SUV, he stopped to give Cracky ten cents (the fuck?), to which she responded, “Take care of your brother,” among other nonsense I couldn’t decipher.  I asked myself if this was a good idea (no), then if I thought I was endangering my life (no), and settled on getting in the car. As we pulled away, Cracky made two guns with her hands and winked at me… greattttt. Making small talk, Dwayne revealed that he in fact he built the building I live in… awkward. We continued chatting and he seemed friendly enough, even though he insulted my intelligence by telling me I looked out of place in the ghetto (… I speak Spanish.) However, I did begin to worry when he asked me if UCONN was in the UK…

Shortly thereafter, he dropped me off at a 7-Eleven.  After about 15 seconds, I determined that they didn’t in fact sell any alcohol.  Frustrated and hot as hell (84 degrees and sunny), I asked two college looking “bros” where I could find some fucking alcohol.  They were actually extremely helpful, and knew about Aki’s but deemed it “poor people alcohol” – knew I didn’t belong there. After this brief conversation, I headed out again, persistently in search of a drink.

Eventually I did find a convenience store with alcohol, and even better, it’s next to a nice Asian Nail salon, where I now have an appointment tomorrow.

All in all, I’m now sitting on my patio, with a hefty glass of wine and some block cheese, cursing myself for choosing the poop colored zippo over the orange one.

Ah yes, just another day in the life…

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^Above: It was so hot my eyeliner turned to mush all over my face… mmmmmm sexyyyyy

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30 Life Lessons For 20-Somethings With Too Many Feelings

Thought Catalog

1. Laugh constantly. Laugh freely. Laugh at every moment in your life. Laugh when it is appropriate. Laugh when it isn’t. Laugh when it fucking hurts like hell. Laugh when the happiness escaping your throat is as smooth as a whiskey seven. If you cannot laugh when you’re beat down. When you are hurt. When you are two seconds away from inhaling a pain that will drown you, you will never survive.

2. Orgasms are by far, hands down, the best thing for your complexion. Don’t waste money on some ridiculously overpriced face wash. Lancome is a lie. So is Cover Girl. Instead, put your fingers to work. Go pay the thirty or fifty bucks for a bunny that’s guaranteed to get you off. Become comfortable enough with an individual to sleep with them on a daily basis. Just cum consistently and your pores will thank you.

3. A cob…

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On Being An Adult Video Star

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I honestly wonder what kind of karma I carry on my back that this shit happens to me…

I’m returning to Argentina in less than two months, and talk to a guy from there on and off. Last week, I sent him a picture of something we were doing in Spanish class because we were talking about the place where he and I met. So anyway, we were having a normal conversation, as friends do, about when I would return to Buenos Aires, when the conversation took a turn for the worst- he asked me something sexual which I misinterpreted as him asking me if I would have a threesome… to which I responded “SHUT up.” But wait, this isn’t even the kicker. He clarified and we moved on…

Since our conversation was a broken combination of English and Spanish, everything seemed even more abrupt.  For example, he asked me out of nowhere, if I knew the pornstar Lisa Ann… because I’m not a fucking weirdo, I didnt. He then continued to tell me that we have similar bodies and that I could be like her if I “trained hard”. So I’m reading all this in my Corporate Finance class, thinking to myself “oh wow, I’m hot shit, it’s not every day someone tells you that you look like a porn star!” Class continued, I neglected to pay attention, thinking only about Argentina and going to the gym as soon as possible (to get my porn star body).

God I hate myself: class ended, and I breezed out of Duffy with my headphones in, swinging my hips around, flipping my hair, the whole nine yards.  I get back to my room, and thought it would be a good idea to look up “Lisa Ann” before going to the gym, just to see exactly who I was dealing with. MISTAKE. The universe swooped in and smacked me hard in the face: this woman is easily forty years old, with giant fake boobs, and won some fucking “milf porn” award. Like die, honestly.

Feeling a major blow to the ego, I took my ass to the gym anyway, where I debated how/if porn stars work out. I ended up laughing at my life on the elliptical and pinched some kind of nerve …

And let the shit show of my life continue!

55 days til Argentina!

Decision Day

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20 years old and in my sophomore year of college, I never thought I’d be faced with the May 1st college decision deadline that once loomed over my head senior year of high school. But as most things do, my life plan from high school has plummeted to the depths of the earth, never to be found again. Just kidding, I’m just revising it right now.

So to update all of your curious minds, I was going to transfer because I am bored, basically conducting my life on a day to day basis filled with simply exercising, netflixs, my kindle, and whatever alcohol is left over from the weekend. It’s funny to think that it’s finals week now, and I am actually wishing I had some work to do! Last night, when faced with ultimately making up my mind between transferring and staying here, I came to the realization that it’s not this school that I dislike, it’s just school in general. I told myself that maybe I just need to chill out, and embrace this time in my life when I have nothing to do and can just screw around all day. Then I got bored again, so I’m planning my internship in Paris and winter break in Sri Lanka in my free time.  I’m also creating a Chinese Business minor so maybe that will occupy some time!

Part of me hates myself for putting all the work into applying and now deciding to stay, but I would’ve hated myself for not doing it more, and it’s not like I had anything more productive to do.  This revised version of my life plan could very easily go awry if I get accepted into USC within the next month, which just seems like too good of an opportunity to pass up, but I suppose only time will tell.

For now, the new schedule for the next two years includes a lot of traveling and of course shopping to occupy my time and my wallet.

Stay tuned~

White Jeans (2 of 1,000,000)

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I’ve gone the past 20 years of my life without a pair of white jeans.  I know, bad. I’ll admit I was afraid of them and their unflattering effects on my lower body.  After breaking my own rules and buying two pairs of colored jeans recently, I decided it was time. 

Per usual, I quickly made a friend in a new Nordstrom department, who selected every white jean on the floor for me to try on. We settled on this great pair of Citizens, although I will acknowledge that Paige also makes a great skinny leg pant.  Ultimately, I picked the cropped Citizens because they’re easier to roll up (I dont think I have abnormally large calves but I always feel like my circulation is being cut off when I roll jeans). If you’re taller than 5’5.5″ you should be good with the Paige. 

Today I’m wearing this Rubbish Sweater with dark jeans and flats, because its a mere 55 degrees this morning, but I’m anxious to pair it with my virgin pair of white jeans. 

When selecting a white jean, keep in mind that you should splurge for a jean that fits better than settling for a cheap one that looks average.  It’s no secret that white shows all, and ultimately, you wont reach for a jean that doesnt look good no matter how cheap it was. When in doubt, pair a white jean with a belted tunic or longer top to hide any unmentionables and create the classic hourglass. 

Wishing you the most luck with white this season ~ carry tide to go!

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Rubbish Open Knit Ocean Tunic (Nordstrom- not available online) $48

Citizens of Humanity Racer Santorini Cropped Skinny Jean (Nordstrom) Sale $109

{{{ http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/citizens-of-humanity-racer-crop-skinny-jeans-santorini/3519620?origin=category&contextualcategoryid=0&fashionColor=&resultback=7347}}}}}

Dressing for Transition: Spring (1 of 1,000,000)

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Spring is an awkward time to get dressed. We’re forced to walk the fine line of sundresses and winter boots. Faced with said dilemma, I’ve spent many consecutive weekends at Nordstrom. Here’s part 1 of what I’m wearing until summertime hits:

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Lots of good staples for this season, and seriously for a steal…

White Skater Skirt (Nordstrom) $62

Mint Crop Top (TopShop) $8

Peach Sweater – tied to be cropped (Charlotte Russe) $12 

Gold and Peach Earrings (Nest Boutique) $24

White Sandals (Forever21) $10 [[[Note: you get what you pay for, these are not walking shoes]]]

Total: $116

This outfit seemed a lot less expensive in my head, but regardless all of these pieces are interchangeable and can be used throughout the summer too. 🙂

Happy Shopping

Xox 

How to feel better when the universe is bullying you:

 

Let me set the scene of this particular Tuesday for you…

Everything that could go wrong was going wrong: first, Ginger reminded me that having a C+ in her finance class is not a good thing, and she would not lie to the college for me (I did not ask). Then, things sucked professionally (cant set myself up for trouble here!). Then, somebody broke up with me (but I WAS SINGLE).  So naturally, all of these things were happening and I was pouting in my bed until my best friend was done with her “work” at 4:30.

No sooner than 4:31 she answered my call, to which I told her that we would not be going to the gym (that particular day had been our day to get back into the routine of exercising) and we in fact needed to go out and drink.  Like any good friend, she complied, and we even did some productive things along the way.

Deciding to really go hard, we drove to Legacy Place. First stop, Hannah went to get her computer fixed at the apple store.  In the meantime, I wandered aimlessly, until someone asked if I needed help.  Without even looking, I informed this person that I had just purchased the iphone 5 and needed a new arm band for the gym I was supposed to be at. Well whoop de dee! When I finally looked at this guy, he was hot! I quickly summarized all of the highlights of my life story for him, ending with the informative “I’m really just looking to buy things I don’t need.” Everything was going great and I even started telling him about the hypothetical apartment I plan on having when Hannah interrupted, rudely asserting that I didn’t need to buy any of the things that I had accumulated while looking for things that I didn’t need to buy.  I mostly wanted to buy something because the guy was cute, but turns out they actually don’t get paid on commission anyway, so it didn’t matter and we left.

Next step of the afternoon, I was still trying to execute some retail therapy and soothe my aching soul a little bit.  We went to Lulu Lemon and tried on approximately every gym head band so if we ever did want to go to the gym, we could look good doing it.  I looked dumb in all of them.  Everyone hated us there and we asked each other if being a bitch was a requirement to be hired. We left shortly thereafter.

Innocently walking across the parking lot to Legal C Bar (our new drinking destination), some rotund forty-year-old man was chasing us down, asking if we received our gift sets.  Thinking this shit was free, we stopped and were handed gift bags of some really shitty makeup – like blue-eye-shadow-shitty.  This guy simply would not shut up, going on about Miami and how he’s lost just wandering around the parking lot.  Hannah told it to him straight, that I love to waste money and even I didn’t want to buy what he was selling.  I simply was not in the mood for such a deliquint salesperson: telling me I got ripped off on my new straightener when I really got the super-secret-price does not make me want to be your friend!!! C’mon anyone should know that.  When we finally made the move to escape the torture, we made the mistake of saying we were going to get drinks, to which he said “I’ll join you”… no. Dude, do you know how old we are? Hannah’s not even 20; gross you perv. He followed up asking if we had boyfriends, I said, “mine doesn’t talk to me” (maybe because he doesn’t exist?) but Hannah swooped in and saved me, explaining that I actually have a Spanish boyfriend ….and that’s why he cant talk… ? Whatever, I cant recall the exact logic behind her point.

But this prick even had an answer to that, replying that he spoke Russian.  And to that, I simply raised my eyebrows, and told him “Devushka, proshie, prochien ya” and that bitch was dumbfounded. So we turned on our heels and walked away as he scrambled to recall what little Russian his pea sized brain possessed ( I know it wasn’t that much because he didn’t understand my simple “Excuse me, miss”).  And this is why I am multilingual.

Finally out of reach from our soon to be kidnapper, we sat down at Legal C Bar.  I promptly explained to our waiter, Scott, that we were there to “drink our sorrows away” and explained to him the dilemmas of the day (briefly, of course).   He sided with me on all counts, so I liked him right away. We enjoyed a delectable series of appetizers and drinks for the next few hours.  Hal (my lovely father) left Scott a nice tip for being so understanding.

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Still not having done any shopping, we ran into 344 before Hannah had to be back for a group project.  She gave me five minutes to look around and tragically I bought nothing.

My message to you is that drinking is greater than working out.

Goodluck and godspeed mothaf*ckas.