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#but like i know at the end of the day it’s just a corporation blah blah blah
ainsleyandherproblems · 25 days ago
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the goodness impulse
I decided to become a vegetarian on impulse, and due to an absolutely bananas confluence of factors: We were watching “Food, Inc.” in AP Bio, after everyone but me had taken the exam because I had to take the make-up exam (due, I think, to a conflict with another Big Test), and I had a weird craving for tofu. So I declared that I would be a vegetarian thenceforth, and my mom replied, “Okay.”
I had not expected that response, but I was a brand-new 18-year-old, so I guess as an adult I was allowed to decide the ethics of my diet.
If you spend more than seven consecutive seconds considering factory farming in the United States, it’s hard to stomach (ha!) the idea of eating meat. I’m sensitive to the realities of how Tyson is run by pricks who bet on how many of their workers would get COVID-19 (really, there was a lawsuit and everything!), and about the realities of how many employees at factory farm are working-class and/or undocumented immigrants, and what that means for them. I just think there’s got to be a better way—for the animals and for the workers, who in wildly different ways lack a lot of the agency that lets people like me decide my diet for “ethical” reasons.
Being a vegetarian, it happens, was easier than I expected: I think the last meat I had was bacon on a particular and renowned deli sandwich, where I asked them to swap the chicken for eggplant but totally forgot the damn sub even had bacon on it, and fish and chips when I was somewhere in the wilds of suburban England (possibly near Harrogate? Definitely not London, in any case). It turns out that, while tofu is blah when cooked by me, I can work magic with tempeh, and that quinoa is actually pretty good!
(Actually, the hard part is when my family and I go out to eat, and I have to cobble together a sad little meal off the appetizer menu, but it turns out artichokes are good!)
This ethic eventually expanded: I wouldn’t buy leather (not a problem, since neither my budget nor style had previously accommodated it), and I endeavored to buy my cosmetics cruelty-free and ideally vegan. But what a nightmare it is, and not just from a research perspective! Did you know that fake leather is made of plastic, which is famously bad for the environment? Or that inexpensive things are often made using either slave labor or labor abuses, often to vulnerable women and children in foreign countries like Taiwan or Vietnam, or undocumented migrants right here in the States? Or that your almonds and kale and spinach and strawberries are farmed by under-appreciated and underpaid workers, often seasonal migrants, and take up a ton of water in drought-stricken areas?
Not to be a downer, but it turns out that the ethical impulse is expensive—and challenging to navigate, in a capitalist system which is very much designed to pit interests against each other and force you, the consumer, to choose. It’s hard to hold the impoverished and disadvantaged responsible, because these are expensive choices—luxury choices, even. If you’re worried about paying rent, or purchasing groceries, the additional concern of animal cruelty is an obscene burden to add to purchasing choices. And it’s just one of the choices you’ve got to consider, both the global and the personal (“what is best to feed my baby?” and “is this something I can afford in order to meet my other obligations?”are valid questions which compete with shit like “do the farmers at Dole receive the protections under the FLSA they are owed?” and “are these peaches organic?” and “wait a fucking second, Chiquita Banana helped fund a Colombian paramilitary group?!”).
But for the rest of us, who can use our dollars to make a point, and yell at companies on Twitter? We should do it! We all know that the happiest chicken gets to stretch her wings and scratch around, and that cows force-fed don’t happy Wagyu steaks make (those cows get massaged! They get treated better than we do, and it shows! Hannibal Lecter would definitely think you tasted better if you got a massage…which is perhaps not a sterling advertisement for a massage).
And we know that happy workers are better workers, and that some things are just viscerally wrong. Maybe they make our lives on the other side of the equation easier and more convenient, but that’s still an icky place to be.
So maybe my issue isn’t with eating meat, but with factory farming under capitalism. I try not to proselytize about vegetarianism (a favorite “frate,” or “friend-date,” with Sara, included us going to a French restaurant near campus where she got duck confit that both looked and smelled delicious, compared to my sad pile of salad), but it does matter. Corporations are liable for so much of climate change because of their industrial practices, but we do get some “power of the purse,” the ability to try and force change for the better—like insisting on carbon-neutral policies an a basic adherence to the civil equivalent of the Geneva Conventions or United Nations’ policies on labor.
As a result of this power, I don’t buy meat, and I don’t eat it, and I don’t buy leather (though I do own some, gifted, because I know a nice handbag when I see one), and it’s still complicated! The use of your power, however small, is challenging, as is weighing needs and wants and limitations and the cold hard facts of existing. 
Where it comes to diets, my position, based on my experience, is that vegetarianism is relatively easy to achieve if you don’t have underlying medical conditions, allergies, or intolerances. Might even make you vegan!
But if you don’t have the money to keep refreshing your kale stash or splashing out for tempeh—or you don’t have the time to handle it or cook it right—then, yeah, it’s hard. It’s hard to weigh where your morals need to be, especially for those of us with some shitty do-right gene that leaves us paralyzed in the face of certain situations (perhaps the Trolley Problem, by Philippa Foote?), or guilt-riddled by things we’ve done and choices we made, especially when they cause harm that we can see.
Though it’s in the parenthetical, I think a lot about my moral failings, especially as they relate to others (my moral failings against myself are, of course, super different and very existential). Vegetarianism is great, and makes me feel good about my actions as a consumer. My past cruelty does not. When I was depressed, pre-diagnosis but also afterwards, I was mostly angry and confused. Like a tumor or a pandemic, I infected others with it, and my jokes and observations about it weren’t even funny. I was fiercely defensive of the “uniqueness” of my suffering and made no space for anyone else’s problems. I had no tolerance for them, and lashed out at perceived advantages I didn’t have. I’d violated my own moral code, and since fleshing it out thanks to a four-year philosophy degree, I feel really shit about it.
Vegetarianism isn’t a panacea for my other failings as a moral person—none of us gets to simply make up for one set of wrongs with a separate set of rights. This is the calculus we have to do, and there’s a whole branch of philosophy dedicated to it called “utilitarianism,” maximizing the most good for the most people. The problem with this calculus is you can always skew it so you and your interests come out on top, and you excuse your obvious moral failings as necessary to your own means-ends. 
(The problem with any calculus is that it’s not easy, to be fair.).
We will all be faced with impossible choices every day, of what to wear and eat and how to act and treat others, the best way to navigate moral situations personal and political. The trick, as I understand it with my four-year philosophy degree (have I mentioned that I studied philosophy yet?) Is being fundamentally decent to others. Striving to be better tomorrow than we were today, whatever that looks like for each of us. Learning, especially when we put our foot in it. Making the best choices for ourselves and the things we care about that we can, ideally without lighting too many fires behind us.
The real wisdom can be summed up in one of the only things I remember from AP Bio, a sort of dirty joke which was stuck on the back wall of the classroom: “We all start out as deuterostomes, but some of us stay that way.”
Whether you eat meat or not, or buy organic or fair trade or not, or buy domestic-only, or try to atone for your wrongs directly or indirectly, we could all probably do to evolve a little bit, which I believe Aristotle calls “eudaemonia.” Walking the walk in our union-made, fair-trade-sourced, vegan-but-not-plastic shoes, as it were, to avoid being what 17-year-old bio students and Aristotle would have called assholes. 
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stanknotstark · a month ago
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Astral Pt. 5 (Loki x Reader)
I actually wrote the first part today cuz this was extremely short before because i wasn’t sure if i should put fillers! In the end i decided to keep it plot heavy but also tried to not make it boring even if this is the first time the two argue and it goes incredibly side ways in ways Loki didn’t imagine lol
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You had come to your safe room to speak with Loki on a sensitive matter, a choice, that you had to make soon. In three days it would be your 18th birthday, not that that was the relevant matter. Shield had contacted you one day through your phone. You had spoken to a nice gentleman by the name of Coulson. He had given you an offer you couldn’t refuse. 
Call this number. That had been the text that you had received. Too curious for your own good, you did. 
Coulson had addressed himself as an operative under Shield, Strategic Homeland blah blah blah the name was a mouthful. He had offered to give you a job somewhat dangerous but the hazard pay was well enough to keep you comfortable. You were actually going to decline it but Coulson stopped you and said he could offer a higher education and a place to live if that was your concern. 
Hook, line, and sinker. Anyplace, away from this horrid house, was loads better. Your parents had calmed recently now that you actually stood up for yourself and knew how to fight but the memories in this forsaken house dragged your spirit down too much. Not to mention the haunting nightmares you had on the regular. 
However, you wanted to speak to Loki about this all. More or less you just wanted his blessing, you already knew what you were going to do. You already had the feeling in your gut that the conversation wasn’t going to end well. You prided yourself in knowing Loki through and through, him you too, and you know Loki is hard about trusting anyone. Not to mention his paranoia reached unsurmountable proportions. You were pretty sure Loki would make a plan A and stick to it but would try to think of every possible outcome and end up having the entire alphabet as a backup plan. He was good at adapting to what the situation called for.
When Loki entered the room he realized how you tensed the closer he got so he stayed away, the hurt look on his face almost caused you to run and hug him but if he touched you you knew you wouldn’t be able to leave him. 
The conversation started nice enough even if you both stood across the room from each other, you with your hands dangling at your sides not really knowing what to do with them. You had asked how his family was treating him and he had answered positively enough that you didn’t feel the need to intervene. Then, because you were too scared to bring up the sensitive topic, asked him how the weather was. That caused Loki to squint at you suspiciously. You have never once asked such a insignificant question. 
“What are you hiding?”
“They want me to work for them once I turn 18,” You told Loki who stood across the room from you confused, “Shield.” He frowned and shook his head, moved to stand across the table you had hid behind. 
“Don’t. We don’t know anything about this Shield corporation. It sounds like they want to use you as a weapon.” Loki said boldly, his hand resting on the chair now white knuckled. 
“I told them I would join them if they gave me a place to live.”
Loki’s wandering eyes snapped to yours. 
“Tell them you changed your mind.”
“No.” You said frowning at Loki. “You know what I have to live with every day, can you blame me for wanting to get out as soon as I possibly can?”
“Your living situation isn’t desirable but you don’t know anything about Shield. Your living situation may be more safe than what they’re offering.” Loki said, his voice starting to raise. 
“I’m going with them, they seem ok enough.” You said with a finality in your tone. Loki wasn’t going to change your mind. You kept up the staring contest he started. Both of you becoming more angry the longer you looked at each other. Loki was the first to break the eye contact. 
“I will not watch you hurt yourself, if you go, it is without my support, do not come back here to cry if they turn out to be something worse than you’re expecting.” Loki challenged, his eyes coming back to yours. He thought the ultimatum would make you change your mind, he must have thought you’d do anything to stay with him, but all it did was encourage you to leave out of stubbornness. 
You really like Loki, he’s been the best best friend you could ever ask for but that doesn’t mean you’re willing to endure the memories of your house longer with unknown hope as to whether Loki would come save you or not. He had said soon but he had also said soon about Thor’s coronation and that still hadn’t happened, to your knowledge. He was a God that had lived over 1000 years, it’s only natural that his view on the word soon was so vastly different from your definition of soon. It was time you started taking your life into your own hands, you shouldn’t need someone to save you, you needed to save yourself. You needed to prove, to whom you’ve no idea, that you could do this without help. 
You let out a angry chuckle, “Fine. you know I don’t like ultimatums but I will not hesitate to make a choice. Good bye, Loki.” 
The last thing you saw was Loki’s wide eyes and his hand trying to grab you from across the table but you had closed your eyes and willed yourself away. If he had been fast enough to grab you, you would have stayed, told him he was right. 
But...
He wasn’t fast enough. 
Laying on your bed you took a few deep breaths but couldn’t force your tears to not fall. You curled up on your side into a fetal position and cried the hardest you had cried in years. You could never go back to Loki. 
Once you had calmed you called Coulson and gave him your answer. You started to pack what little you appreciated and shoved your feelings of Loki out of you mind for now. 
Pt. 4/Pt. 5/?
Tag list: @justfangirlthingies @emelieh99​
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cynicaldesire · 2 months ago
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Since I’m having trouble writing, I’ll just make an update post. Maybe that’ll help me feel better, get some things off my chest.
Not much to get off my chest tho. My husband had a like 2week break and we sat around mostly playing Monster Hunter Rise for the duration.
Shortly before his break, though, I was having chest pain and a toothache. My teeth have looked pretty gnarly and my gums have been receding for a while but language barrier so we’ve been too scared to go to a dentist. But we have to now because I started have Chest Pain.
My husband’s father died from heart failure. So I kept expecting my chest pain to go away so I wouldn’t have to scare him with it. But after like day 4, when the pain hadn’t gone away, I finally broke down and told him about it. He had like 3 days of work, so we agreed that I would be super careful and we lost a lot of sleep, but I checked my heart rate using my phone and tried to take it easy until my husband’s break started. We headed to the big hospital like a block away from the clinic we usually go to just in case my chest pain was serious. We struggle our way through language barriers and I explain my symptoms to the doctor. It was mostly some burning pain at the time. Doctor has me get an ECG and some bloodwork. He tells me the ECG is normal so my actual heart muscle is fine, but the bloodwork says my liver is inflamed in response to something, but it’s not an infection, so he’s gonna prescribe me some NSAIDs and tells me to come back in a week. My husband says that I also have been having some tooth pain. The doctor freezes with a thinky face and says to get my teeth checked and to come back in a week. We ask if he has any suggestions on dentists. He says NOPE! and leaves. We head to checkout and while waiting for them to process my stuff, the doctor stops by checkout also and I’m like Hey. He nods and heads out. We spent a total of like... 4 hours there. Total. For the ECG, the bloodwork, etc.
Go home, take the meds, try to take care of my teeth, get Listerine. Sit around and try to take it easy for a week. We go back, the burning is gone and my teeth have overcome their problem. Doc asks if I’m okay now, I say yeah, seem to be, but now I have random pinchy pains. He says I should come back in a month. Husband and I can’t so the doctor is like Okay well, you’re fine, but if it gets bad again... Come back.
Due to my being broke, uninsured, and having a chronic illness, I do a lot of armchair doctoring on myself. There’s a limit to it, of course, but I try to research my own health issues or treatments after visiting a doctor. I found so much more information on PCOS on sites like fucking Reddit than by going to a doctor for years. So after the doctor told me I was okay, I looked up why I might have chest pain if it wasn’t related to a heart attack or something. And one of the options was a pulled muscle.
I thought back to the week before the chest pain started. Other than the toothache and swollen gums, I had been doing a bunch of exercise. I did a bunch of Ringfit and hip lifts and situps and stuff. And I was like Hm. Did I injure my chest muscle overdoing the Ringfit?
I, of course, informed the parents of all of this. My husband’s mother was informed and I was worried she would be deeply upset because she lost her husband to heart problems. But then both parents were like “You went to the doctor? You have medications? Well you seem to have it under control, so let’s bitch about my problems.” Meanwhile, I’m over here having trouble sleeping because I’m worried I won’t wake up. But okay. When my husband went back to work, I Skype’d with my mother and she seemed more irritated that I had interrupted her evening than happy to talk to me or worried about my Chest Pain. Also my dad has to get up at like 3am, so when I called her, she was worried her getting loud and animated as we do was going to wake him up.
(husband’s mental health doctor struggles and a story about library card nonsense under the cut)
Husband has also been seeking professional help because he believes he has ADHD. He’s been having a lot of problems, mostly mentally and emotionally, and he traced all the issues he’s having to ADHD. So he went to an English-speaking psychiatrist for medication. The shrink said he wanted to treat the anxiety before the ADHD in case anxiety is the only issue. My husband, due to his job, is very good at asking questions, so he asked the doctor how many people he prescribes this medication to. And he said 100% of his patients. Well, the medication didn’t seem to help, so on the followup appointment, the doctor said Oh, you’re just taking too much. My husband was like It’s supposed to reduce my anxiety, but instead it’s making my anxiety worse, it’s giving me mood swings, and generally making me very angry. And also sex is more difficult. Doc said I’m gonna reduce the dosage because I can’t treat your ADHD without getting rid of the anxiety. Husband came out of the appointment angry and defeated. But now he’s taking less (and it might be helping?)
Soooo yeah. I try to brush my teeth at least once a day (up from the like once every 20 years I did it before) and I use the No alcohol Listerine in place of brushing sometimes because you can. I skimmed an article about how to take good care of your teeth and it said to not actually rinse when you brush and mouthwash in place of brushing sometimes. I drink almost exclusively soda so I try not to drink any for at least 30minutes after brushing or mouthwash.
We hung out with the friends a couple weeks ago and they said we should start up a new DnD campaign because one of our friends has a roommate in his small apartment and can’t rejoin the old one. The roommate is a friend displaced by a breakup, but he seems to have a new apartment and the moveout date keeps moving. Our DM is getting tired of it and one of our other friends wants in because he’s lonely and DnD is great, so he said we should start up a new campaign so he can join. So we’re setting up for that, just in case.
In order to work on my writing, I’ve skimmed a lot of tips articles after watching a bunch of YouTube lectures and videos. I kinda hate reading and I feel like a huge fraud because if I want to write, I should like to read. But I don’t want to risk buying books I don’t like and having piles of books on my Kindle that just rot. And also, you know, I’m broke. Why spend money on something I won’t get any enjoyment out of? Just a waste at that point. Coulda bought some McDonald’s with that money. Or something. So I thought about the library. I don’t have an active library card, but I knew my Dad had one, so I asked to use his to check out ebooks. He obliged and I started getting books that everybody recommends, like The Name of the Wind and Tales of Earthsea and all this other stuff. I also got Mistborn: The Final Empire and some other Sanderson books, and the Witcher series. But not every book was available at my library. I found an app that let me look at other libraries’ catalogs and I found the missing books at the library where my husband’s family and friends are. I asked our friends if they had a card among them, and the one guy that works at the library has one but his card is always maxed out for checkouts. As an employee, he can check out like  a max of 99 things. And it’s always maxed out. He offered me something I wasn’t comfortable with, so I declined. So I asked my husband to make a card. He declined. So I asked him to ask his mom to make one. She said she doesn’t live in the city, so she can’t. She sent us an email with my husband’s sister’s name for a library that I didn’t ask for and didn’t have the books I was looking for available. Because it uses a different service than the one I was looking at apparently so I could use that one but they didn’t send actual login information.
My husband, because of the way he communicates with his family, asked his mother for help with this library endeavor very cavalierly. He was just loosey-goosey with it. Something about it rubbed me the wrong way, but I figured they would handle it. His family intimidates me, has rarely made me feel welcome, and so I usually leave myself out of conversations with them. But after they just stopped worrying about the library thing, because I felt like I was right and all they had to do was make an effort, I took it upon myself to email his mom directly. Due to childhood trauma or other paranoia, I’m always worried about being misconstrued or misunderstood, so I end up being very verbose. See above. So I made a long email explaining why I wanted the library card, why I was asking for their help specifically, and included links to the places I saw you could make a library card and how they didn’t have to leave the house to verify it because of COVID. Then, to make sure it wasn’t demanding, that it was friendly, I added some stuff at the bottom about how I wished them well and I was proud of my sister-in-laws’s weight loss journey and how my chest was doing and blah blah. I sent this email right before bed. I assumed that his family would work together to figure it out and if they didn’t wanna deal with it, they would say they weren’t interested. The worst they can do is say no and I’ll have lost nothing except time.
Woke up to an email from his mother saying, in that malicious compliance/corporate politeness way, that she couldn’t make a library card because she didn’t live in the city and she’d be happy to make one for one of the cities that did work. Also, she hoped I was feeling better.
I had had a bad day prior. The day before, waking up had been near impossible, my husband ordered McDonald’s delivery for breakfast and I wasn’t hungry so we sat and watched an anime I didn’t want to watch while food sat getting cold in front of me. I ended up not being hungry for 8hrs. We were talking to the group about DnD, but also needed to shower, so while my husband got in the shower, I said some things to the group and then hopped in the shower. Upon telling my husband what I said, he had this look on his face like he was planning how to damage control what I had said, despite not even knowing what it was. My exhaustion had left me vulnerable, so I couldn’t deal with it and cried. He apologized and we talked about it. Bolstered by this conversation, I went on to boldly converse with other people, which is what allowed me to send that email to his mother in the first place. So upon her declaration that she couldn’t help me, I decided to help myself.
So I went through the process of making an account using my husband’s name for the library I wanted and it worked, I think. It’s not verified or maybe it’s not in the city, so I couldn’t check out an ebook. So I was back to square one. Not only back to square one, now I was doubly wrong. I had pursued this process in righteous indignation, after having directly contacted his mother, and been proven wrong. So now, not only was I dumb and wrong, I had put myself out there. I was wrong on stage.
My husband, wanting to help, went and acquired the one book I was using as my litmus for me. There are probably others I could look up, but at least I have that one and it’s sequel.
But yeah, that’s what’s going on with me.
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movie-reviews-plus · 3 months ago
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Mr. Brooks 2007
There are some movies that completely captivate some people, and they can't stop gushing about it, or praising them, even long after the movies have been broadcast on non-network TV. Two such movies that come to mind, are 'Looper' and 'Fight Club'. A third movie is this one: ‘Mr. Brooks’ 2007. For me, well, it didn't generate such a strong reaction. Well, actually, if I hadn't felt so apathetic about it, I'd have to say I found the movie completely repulsive. It's another movie in which Hollywood tries to create a likable anti-hero, in that particular case, a wealthy corporate executive by day, who is a serial killer by night. There's a problem there: the scenes of the serial killer half of the guy, portrayed by Kevin Costner, spends so much time murdering people, that it's a little hard to believe he actually has any kind of job, or does much of anything else. He's not your ordinary serial killer: instead of having sexual intercourse with women, and then murdering them, which seems to be the classic MO (that stands for mode of operation, in case you didn't know), he meticulously plans and executes his murders on people he has first collected a sort of dossier on. Now, the meticulous part would seem to indicate he has some form of psychosis, like OCD, but, looks like the film is trying to say he's a megalomaniac, since his day job is bossing people around, and chastising them if he doesn't get his coffee right. Then, at night, his careful planning of his executions, along with holding other people's lives, literally, in his own hands, is a way to find even further control over other people, which, might seem to be impossible during his day gig, but, in real life, is actually even worse than what the movie's character is doing at night. Partially reinforcing his authoritative position, is that he consoles himself that he's killing those people because they deserve it, which, is, also, sort of a lame form of psychologizing on the part of the movie, and even more lameness: assuages his guilt over the killings. It's not a concept that hadn't been stated before, that the motivation for serial killers is to try and seek control, however, it's partially tempered by the killer's internal narrative stating he gets a thrill out of killing people. Adding to the pop psychology mix, he has an imaginary friend, played by William Hurt, who guides and supports him. The rest of the movie is about when Mr. Costner gets a real, fellow,  wannabe killer, friend, a guy who, seems like he's going to be a victim at first, but, not much of surprise, surprisingly, wants in on Mr. Costner's action. Yep, the really surprising thing about that, is that it wasn't that surprising. Of course, Mr. Costner is strictly solo - his imaginary friend not withstanding, and is partially blackmailed into the relationship, so, of course, that's the end of the newbie guy. Plus, three's a crowd, even when the second wheel is just imaginary, another implication that's a little too trite as well. The fourth person in Mr. Costner's life - since his movie wife doesn't seem to count for much of anything, is a fashionably stylish police detective played by Demi Moore. Guess in the type of upscale neighborhood the serial killer lives in, even the cops have to wear designer clothes. And what happens there? "I know you did it, and I'm going to get you!" "You know I did it and you aren't going to get me!" Blah. Blah. Blah. Fortunately, the blah, blahs are kept thankfully short. The look of the film is straight out of Michael Cimino film school, which isn't saying it's all that great, just you've seen it before. Probably the most distasteful thing about the whole movie was the underhanded effort to try and justify the dirty deeds perpetuated, often, by the very wealthy, by foiling their actions, in such a way, that Mr. Costner's character’s corporate, semi-mundane daily life, is pitted against his night time killing sprees, which seem ridiculously impossible. "I mean", the movie seems to say,"you've got to be kidding that the captains of industry are killing people". Didn't stop me from believing, just made it worse.
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andifnotheisstillgood · 4 months ago
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What career path/masters degree should I pursue?
Let's play, Who wants to be a Career Advisor?!
What career path/masters degree should I pursue?
Alright y'all, I need some major career advice! I know it may be frowned upon to ask for life advice from strangers on the internet, but I am a first gen college student and I don't personally know anyone (not even family) who has even gone to college and google is driving me crazy! So here I am, calling on all you smarty pants out there to put your wisdom and worldliness to use! :)
Some Background:
I've been pre-med all my life, 4.5 GPA in high-school, straight A's until my junior year of college at the University of California, San Diego. My GPA started to slip because I was working 70+ hours a week as an EMT, while attending school full time, and surprise, burn-out is real and idk if y'all know how intense it can be to be a pre-med at UCSD, but lets just say I should have focused on my education and not my workaholic "willing to do whatever it takes not to be poor like my childhood" mindset. On top of already having and being treated for depression, I absolutely wrecked my mental health and my confidence that I had what it takes to get into Med School (definitely imposter syndrome, but hey hindsight is 20/20 right?)
SO; my junior year I switch gears to PA school, because hey, my GPA is no longer competitive (spoiler, it is 3.1) and "I'm not good enough". Fast forward to my first PA school application cycle after graduation...apply to 8 schools, and get rejected to all of them, because I didn't have the right anatomy (I needed the lab too, but for whatever reason UCSD literally doesn't have an anatomy lab). I should have taken it at the local community college, but I was naive enough to think my EMT I and EMT II classes would cover it, since it contained an anatomy lab portion ( I was wrong). Not only was this a gut punch, I had wasted $1200 I DIDN'T have on application fees FOR NOTHING.
During my application process and subsequent rejections, I was working as a Medical Assistant at a Pain Clinic in my deep country, meth infested, home town. Turns out it was a front for massive fraud and for lack of a better term, a pill mill (opioids/narcotics). So what's a gal to do when uncovering such blatant fraud? Collect the evidence, lawyer up, and blow the whistle.
Meanwhile, I am mentally wrecked yet again because the profession I've dedicated my life to entering has been tainted (these MDs, PAs, MAs, etc, were supposed to be HELPING people but they were just lining their pockets and actually HURTING them). They had been getting away with it for more than a decade, and the research I did on the ASTOUNDING amount of similar cases disgusted me.
So now Im a whistleblower trying to get another job...news flash, no one wants to hire a tattle-tale, and in a small town word travels fast (They fired me for looking into the fraud, I was asking to many questions) so I was Blacklisted.
After 6 months of unemployment, I finally get a job at Walmart. Say hello to my friends: more depression, self-doubt and self-hate for "wasting my degree" and my potential. After working fast-food and retail through high school and college, It was gut wrenching to be back after promising myself I'd never have to work minimum wage again if I work hard enough, put myself through college etc. But there I was.
After about 4 months at Walmart I couldn't take it anymore. I wasn't in PA school like I planned, and I had all but given up on the medical field. I was letting myself down and wasting my potential. Luckily, I had gotten my depression & anxiety under control enough and to dip my toes back into medicine and hope not to get burned again.
Enter my most recent job: Medical Assistant at a Primary Care office. (DURING COVID)
Family owned practice, poor management, understaffed, under paid. (Its worth mentioning I live in a very poor, medically under-serviced community, you you can imagine the quality of healthcare was very LOW, something I was uncomfortable with accepting.) I ended up learning and growing as a leader, advocating for us employees and eventually became the office supervisor, and mastered every position they'd teach me, from billing and coding to reception and insurance verification.
Long story short, went "ok" for about 10 months, I was in constant meetings with management advocating for changes to better the patient care, etc. They were receptive to a lot of my ideas and after gaining confidence in managerial concepts, it was clear my performance was outshining and pointing out the many downfalls of the current manager. This just made my job harder, since the manager was very intimidated by this and it was becoming visible in the way she was treating me. The last straw was when I was instructed to commit fraud by this incompetent manager, even after immediately pointing it out was illegal (I was told to do it anyway). I reported it to HR and I was given some PTO days off so they could think of the solution, since the active manager was now aware I had reported her and now blatantly hated me. They called me in 2 days later to fire me (after they of course said, Thank you for bringing this to our attention, and assured me they claims would not be submitted and they will make sure it never happens again, manager will be handled blah blah blah). I was even given severance pay and a bonus. Once again, standing my ground and doing whats right has gotten me fired. They knew what they did was wrong (hence the severance pay), and if I didn't already have a current case in the works, I'd take them to court for retaliation and wrongful termination.
Yikes, I didn't realize how much I wrote. I'll wrap it up soon I promise!
THE BRIGHT SIDE:
I have learned A LOT and because of these experiences, I am a stronger and more confident person.
What these experiences (and intense research on fraud/whistleblowing etc) have made realize:
I have an intense hate for fraud period, especially in healthcare.
Im pretty passionate about stopping it (and brave enough too apparently!)
I refuse to tolerate incompetency in healthcare and greedy management controlling and harming quality of patient care
I really like to investigate, solve problems, make things better/more efficient
I am not good at drinking the company "Kool-Aid", I find it easy to see through a fake company culture.
I cannot mentally handle mistreatment of patients, small or not, there is just no excuse for cutting corners when it comes to a persons health.
I much prefer natural and holistic medicine, and REALLY hate Big Pharma and how out of control for-profit healthcare has gotten.
I want to be in a career that I will be able to make large scale CHANGE in healthcare. Expanding on this, I don't see myself doing anything clinical, seeing patients in a hospital setting, etc. The way I see it is I could spend an 8 hour shift helping 8 people in a very small scope, (No more than 10 because I am fundamentally against practitioners seeing patients in such high quantities because it not only leads to burn out in the medical provider, but it makes the QUALITY of the care suffer and therefore the HEALTH of the patient suffer.)
I have a passion for educating people about the importance of treating employees right and their own rights when it comes to crooked employer practices.
I don't want to be a PA..or MD..
TLDR;; I have no idea what my calling is, but I do know I need to get back to academia. Any and all advice so greatly appreciated!
THE LOOMING QUESTION: What should I be when I grow up?
aka What should I get my masters degree in!?
I am a lifelong learner CRAVING to go back to school and never stop learning. I put all my eggs in the Medical school basket and burnt myself out, but I've finally recovered, and opened my eyes to what I need to do. GET THE HECK BACK IN SCHOOL, and for christ sakes stop dwelling on my PA school rejections, because I realize now that they were a blessing in disguise!
Resume Snapshot:
A.S. Social and Behavioral Health (psychology concentration)
B.S. Public Health w/Biology Minor (all the Pre-Med classes) from UCSD
Certified EMT-B and CCMA
GPA: 3.1
GRE: Verbal: 154, Quantitative: 149, Analytical Writing: 4.0
My brainstorming list so far, in no particular order:
Public Health law/ Public Health policy OR Law school and work in the public health field?
(protect populations from big business hurting community health with pollution, creating food swamps, labor laws, investigating fraudulent relationships between harmful companies and government (kick backs etc)
-Protecting whistleblowers, investigating fraud or malpractice. (Dream would be a medical Dr. who practices law, prosecuting malpractice and large scale fraud/abuse)
-I am VERY logical and strategic when creating an argument, and I will fight my point to the death. I like PROOF, FACTS, and LOGIC. I am very critical of sources and double checking data, ensuring it isn't being presented in a bias/deceptive way.
I/O psychology (make the workplace better for the employee, consult corporations on best practices when it comes to everything from work life balance, perks, managerial support, ensuring a healthy workforce (ergonomics, healthy foods in break rooms, even nap time or on site chiropractor/masseuse/Fitness & Health coach/therapist and lunch time meditation and yoga)
Clinical Research (coordinator? I have SO many ideas I would love to see studied in the psychology and medical field. Would love to design experiments and conduct them with teams of researchers. I could see myself leading the project or at least heading a major arm of the project.
College Professor (public health, psychology?) Fun fact: my first dream job was to be a high school teacher. I used to "play school" and force my siblings to be my students, for fun! I switched to pre-med around 6th grade after learning about the terrible pay and seeing how miserable my teachers where (they sure didn't hide their misery from us students :( very sad when you consider so many students turned off from teaching because of miserable teachers! I only recently realized that I only threw that aspiration away for monetary reasons, and life has shown me that money isn't everything. It's much more important to feel fulfilled by your work. So therefore, I have put teaching back on the table. (Plus, being a professor is WILDLY different than the poor public school system I was in!)
Dual Master of Business Administration/Master of Public Health?
NON-Profit management?
Global Health? (I love to travel and have always wanted to conduct public health initiatives world wide, or represent the US in global public health affairs. Very apt to seeing the big picture and how small change can create mass effects.
Desirable traits in a Career:
Innovation, a forward thinking/purposeful
To be in a leadership/impactful/respected position (will naturally strive to be the best in my field)
A field with high integrity/standards/no room for cutting corners or at-least encourages discrepancies to be found and corrected. For example, in the research field, sure there will be certain studies falsified/skewed for nefarious financial reasons, but the profession as a whole is based on maintaining credibility and rigorously checking each others work to better the integrity of ALL research) checks and balances I guess?
To help or protect people, or even our planet. Help keep powerful corporations in check from exploiting population health/employees/the environment.
P.S. If what I am asking here would be better posted else where let me know! or If some type of career advising would be helpful that you might recommend? I am unemployed at the moment so I really didn't want to have to pay for advice, but I do want to make an informed decision.
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andifnotheisstillgood · 4 months ago
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13 years
I'll try and make this as short as possible.
I've been with the same company for 13 years. I'm a coffee roaster. No, not a barista...I cook the actual coffee from recipes etc. Writing this sounds stupid, as in I feel stupid writing it and admiting how hard I tried and never just quit and went somewhere else, which I am assuming is the result I will get here from you all.
When I started my company told me how important this job was. They told me how difficult it was to find people who could handle not only the work, but all the responsibility it came with. I bought it all and drank the Kool aid.
They told me from day one they were looking for a hybrid employee. Someone who they could put in the factory, and no matter the situation, could always get the job done by any means necessary, whatever it takes. To me that sounded perfect. The job was supposed to include science aspects, travel, outside training, and working with all parts of the company. Where do I sign?
I ended up being very good at the coffee business. I have a natural passion for it and that showed abundantly. Together, with their top roaster, I quickly because more than they had hoped or asked for and happily.
My initial goal was very simple. Be so great at the entire company, that they can't ignore you. I said yes to everything. Year by year I consistently learned at least one new position, while still being responsible for my own responsibilities and department. None of which bothered me because my mindset was literally, push yourself until you can't push anymore, than go some more and every new day was a chance to be noticed. Every new position I learned or problem I fixed was a chance to get noticed.
I never got noticed.
I applied for internal positions year after year trying to advance anywhere I could. But the talk of "we love to promote from within." Was just talk. I've had 100 doors slammed in my face and yet everytime I look at it as an opportunity to grow, to meet the challenges they say I can't. I invest in myself over and over again after every "no". After every "just keep doing what your doing and we'll let ya know if something pops up."
Well it's been 13 years. I never stopped learning other people's positions. I change shifts on a moments notice. I am the guy everyone goes to. I dont even have a supervisor on my shift, because there is no need. Instead of being rewarded they now have a fraction of the employees they actually need, but get by because there are a small group of about 7 employees that are "hybrids" like me and we have refused to let them fail. I know this sounds mickey mouse, but we are no small company.
So I have just become someone they abuse. I babysit a company that has determined a ceiling for my growth based on nothing. I just got denied again for a promotion because they didn't want to take a chance on me. And the raises have long since become nonexistent.
You ask why I stay. Medical insurance. I need it now even though I'm still young. Mostly it's this sense that no matter what, this is just it. This is how its gonna be anywhere else. Managers that are absent and nonexistent. A company that says and "promotes" good "values " but doesn't actually live them. And just a lifetime of listening to a different corporate stooge year after year give the same, "things are gonna change, we can't do this without you, blah blah blah. "
I literally don't even know what I'm posting...I just don't see the point in trying anymore. I can't just go to work and slack off and get a paycheck, that's not who I am. All I hear from other people is that it's the same everywhere. This is just what it is. No matter how hard you work. How much you invest in yourself or the company. How much time you put in and just keep moving forward even though people just keep taking a dump on you. It will never matter. No one cares. Make the product and go home.
And for the last 13 years though many of us have tried, only one man has gotten a promotion off the factory floor. He lied to every employee he could, caused people to go after each other, and got a secret deal that was never posted. He lied , cheated, and stole the position. So before you say anything like this...I cant do this. I'd never be able to look myself in the mirror again.
Idk if anyone will read this...I just needed to get it out somewhere...
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lifedistractions · 4 months ago
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Lately, the days had been pretty repetitive if he was being completely honest. And that was ok with him. A masked Jonah stacked the food shelves as he had been assigned to do that morning. Just like he was assigned the day before. However, nobody could criticize his work ethic. Even now he never slacked in diligence. But there was no denying he was a different Cloud 9 employee than he was 6 years ago.
There was a time when he was excited to go to work. Not necessarily for the work itself but he enjoyed what the potential of the day held for him. Life was more colourful, more electric. Moments of beauty were everywhere if you just allowed yourself to see them. He truly believed that. Now he looked back at his own naivety in embarrassment. What an idiot. So dumb.
While lost in his own thoughts, a familiar exotic scent brought him back to reality. It was her perfume. He bought it for her two Christmases ago. He stood up straight, swung around and suddenly she was there, standing right in front of him. Was this real? He accidentally dropped the small stack of tuna cans he was holding. Some landing on his foot hard and rolling like they couldn’t get away fast enough.
“Ow.” Yup, real.
“Hi Jonah,” Amy said hopefully. Tentatively. With a small smile that made Jonah weak and scared at the same time.
“Hiii Amy. You’re here! ...Well, ahhaahow the hell are ya!? “Jonah was trying so hard to seem casual. His mask covered most of his humiliation except for the give-away arched eyebrows.
“Um yeah, I’m alright” she said not quite as emphatically. “I’m here to meet with Glenn and Dina. Just going over some... you know customer relations corporate boring stuff blah blah” dismissively waving it off like he shouldn’t have to care about it. She was clearly very nervous seeing him again too.
“Ah. Yeah, boring pft.” excessively nodding in agreement.
An awkward silence filled the space between them. Jonah needed to do something, say something. Before he could, Amy saved him. “It was a last minute meeting added to the schedule. I wasn’t sure if I should’ve texted you first to see if it was ok...”
“No no, of course, of course it’s ok. Why wouldn’t it be ok? It’s your job, so.”
His voice raising to a volume that made nearby customers turn there heads in curiosity.
He continued again, a little calmer this time, “I’m glad to see you” he said sincerely. “You look...*gulp* good.” The heat on the neck and ears was almost unbearable.
“Thanks” Amy said, briefly looking down at the floor, grabbing her face mask from her pocket. “Well I should, go. Don’t want to be late”. She carefully put her mask on around her ears. She hesitated when she turned around. “Can we talk later?”
“Absolutely!” he exclaimed, again to the attention of the bewildered customers. Cool Jonah had clearly left the building long ago.
Her eyes smiled in gratitude. “Great.”
“You’ll know where to find me” he unnecessarily added.
His statement hit her with the pang of guilt that was unintentional. She walked away looking back only once to see him quietly chastising himself.
....
“Knock, knock!” standing at the door of the managers office where inside Dina and Glenn were arguing, again, Amy decided an interruption was required. It was like she never left.
A high pitched enthusiastic “AMY!” was her reward. Glenn’s face beamed like a child on Christmas morning. He jumped up from chair behind his desk and rushed over to hug her.
“Glenn, NO!” Dina shouted at him. She just came from California, you idiot. The virus all but decimated the entire population, and you want to hug one of them right now?!”
“Bit of an exaggeration.” Amy said meekly.
“Oh, well, I’m just so HAPPY to see you! Air hug? “ Glenn asked hopefully.
“Air hug.” Both mimed the gesture that had become all too familiar amongst friends lately.
“What do we owe this surprise visit?!“ Glenn went back around to sit behind his desk, delight still shining through him.
“Well, I thought we could talk about the roll out for the Cloud 9 consumer online survey...
“What survey? The one you gave a webinar on about last week to all the managers? That one? You came all the way from Corona ravaged California to talk to us IN PERSON about a stupid, useless survey?” Dina was confused and slightly suspicious.
“Dina!” Glenn objected.
“Um well, yeah.” Amy tried to think of a more credible excuse. “But also to see my peeps! I missed my old crew at 1217!” she flashed her radiant smile. That should do it.
“Awe, we missed you too!” Glenn looked like a charmed puppy. “The thing is though, I have an appointment with our accountant today. So I can’t stay. But I will be back later so if we can meet then? OH, how about I treat us a takeout picnic! Socially distanced, of course. I could even get Jerusha to make us a -“
“No, Glenn,” Dina interrupted him irritated. “Do your appointment. My bestie and I can catch up without you cramping our style,” giving a knowing wink to Amy.
Amy was uncomfortable. “It’s ok, Glenn. I’ll do the meeting with Dina and I will make sure to stick around for your return. We’ll catch up then.”
“Ok, great.”
After Glenn had gone, Amy thought the suspicion in the room would have left with him. She was wrong.
“So, bestie. Don’t get me wrong, I love seeing you again, but I would like know why you’re really here.” Dina leaned in for the truth that she could see just behind the thinly, vailed guise of Amy’s face.
Amy sighed with combined relief and trepidation. The pretence could finally end. She thumped down in the chair. “It’s Jonah.”
“Of course it is.”
****edited to add****
I’ve created a AO3 account to add this story. There will be 2 chapters in total. This is just part of chapter 1. If you want to read more go here:
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la-jolie-mln-posts · 4 months ago
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What is a brand? For most of us it’s a line of apparel, a type of smart phone or your favorite cereal. But a brand goes way beyond just products and extends to people. Some of you will remember the Apple ad that showcased a Bill Gates type (guy in a jacket and tie, looking dull and corporate) against a Steve Jobs type (hip, casual, smart). You get the point. And, so did the audience — Microsoft blah, Apple, cool. It worked!
Who are some of the most visible people with personal brands? Kim Kardashian comes to mind. But if you are interviewing for an executive position at one of the top 5 consulting firms, hers is not the brand image you want to bring to your first Zoom call or in-person interview.
Oprah Winfrey owns her personal brand. She welcomed discussion about body image, embraced her own and never lost her credibility. She dressed for her position, for the occasion and for her image. She never looks sloppy. She’s crossed the Rubicon from entertainment icon to business mogul, but never lost the Oprah brand.
Princess Kate Middleton is a princess, mom and leading figure in the world of outreach to children in need. As her style has evolved, she’s been able to communicate her brand through personal acts and personal style that remains young and hip.
Today women head some of the biggest U.S. corporations.  Here’s just a few….
Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube Lynsi Snyder, CEO, of In-N-Out Burger Marillyn Hewson, CEO of Lockheed Martin Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors Whitney Wolfe Herd of CEO of Bumble
They may not have the same instantaneous brand recognition as the Kardashians, Oprah or Princess Kate, but to achieve the positions they have on the highly competitive playing fields in which they operate, they all had to create something unique — a personal brand.
Branding with the 4 “P’s’
It’s a familiar strategy for experienced marketers. Let’s say you’re launching a new brand of lipstick or changing a trusted brand with new packaging or a new message. You start by thinking through your brand strategy using the 4 P’s:
Product: A product can be either a tangible good or a service that fulfills a particular need for consumers. Whether your product is a brand of potato chips, a household item like dishwasher soap, a hotel chain or a university, it’s essential that you have a clear grasp of what makes it unique before you can successfully market it.
Price: Once the product offering is established, you can make pricing decisions. Price determinations will impact profit margins, supply, demand and marketing strategy. Products and brands may need to be positioned differently based on varying price points.
Promotion:  Once product and price are established, it’s time to promote it. Promotion looks at the many ways advertisers market to consumers and includes includes: advertising, public relations, social media, emails, search engine marketing, videos and more.
Place: Successful brands are all about putting the right product, at the right price, at the right place, at the right time. The mission is to convert interested consumers into actual customers. Today, the initial place potential clients engage is online.                            
Now, create your own brand using the 4 P’s
You are the PRODUCT, so begin by evaluating what makes you special. Ask yourself: Q. Are you dressing for your body? A. If you’re curvy and you love yoga pants, make sure you purchase high-quality yoga pants that aren’t see-through when you stretch or bend over. And consider the occasion before wearing them. If you’re going for a sophisticated look, slim fitting trouser pants may be a better fit. - If you have big chest, go for a v-neckline time. - No matter what the occasion: job interview, business trip, night out with friends or going to your kid’s soccer game, the items you pull together should communicate the same message. “There goes Susan; she always looks fabulous.”
Q. What colors work best for you? A. Navy or black works on just about everyone; here’s a few ways to make it yours: - If you’re going for a job interview, neutral is best. But a pop of color is a great way to express your personal brand. Whether a lush pink shirt under a dark blazer, a red velvet shirt with a black sweater, a dress accessorized with a fun pair of sneakers (only if you can pull off the look), or fun pair of pumps, your signature brand will emerge as you try things out and focus in on what works for you. - Hair can be a fantastic branding tool. If you’ve been blessed with a gorgeous mop, go with it. Hair is one of our best weapons. If you want to call out your inner artiste or you play in a rock band, pink or blue hair is okay. But it’s definitely not for everyone. Some work places, like design agencies, hair salons and big tech firms are amenable to this look. But if you work in a bank or a law firm, probably not. If you simply have to try it, there are always extensions. Remember, the look has to work on you. If you can pull off something like this, go for it…
Let’s talk about PRICE
What PRICE are you willing to accept for your talent, your contribution, your value, and your time? When I worked in marketing at a big corporation in my late 20′s, I met a woman who was hired to be a copywriter. She was actually a former agency owner and had a lot more to offer. The guy who hired her put her in a huge, open office setting where she wrote copy for retail projects such as in-store banners and such. She left after 2 weeks, but she also left an impression.
So, he called her back to see what it would take to hire her. She was polite, but firm. She said, “I’ll need my own office. I want to be paid twice the hourly fee you paid me, and I want to bring in my own creative talent (writers and designers) to work with.”
Done. She got what she asked for. Why? Because she knew what she was her value and had the confidence to ask for it.
Promoting yourself is a tricky business
PROMOTION today is about establishing your online presence. As we’ve seen lately, the cancel culture is a force to be reckoned with. And by that, I mean be careful with the topics you choose to address. It’s easy to be mocked, doxed and dropped from social media — all it takes is one wrong comment.
According to Forbes, “Your personal brand should be an easy daily filter that you create content and reach out to your audience with.” The article quotes Jason Wu, founder of CoinState. “Be the master of your craft, skillset or industry before starting a personal brand. Then your content will amplify who you are.”
In other words, avoid mistakes like the one made by Olivia Jade. She’s the daughter of actress Lori Loughlin who did prison time for getting her kids into college through false claims and a financial bribe. Olivia was a successful online fashion and culture blogger until her mother’s deceit landed on her. Then she made the mistake of using her social media platform to say that she really wasn’t at USC to attend classes. In the end, she lost followers, endorsements and a lot more.
The point? Have some experience under your belt before promoting your personal brand.
Have you found your PLACE?
It’s pointless to tell digital natives to avoid social media until they achieve some maturity. But, as the story above illustrates, social platforms are eternal, and establishing a trashy personal brand while young can come back to haunt you. So, parents need to keep a watchful eye on how kids are promoting themselves, knowing that colleges look carefully at this content.
When it comes to establishing a personal brand, there are tons of articles out there on how to do this. You can spend a day on Google and find lists like this:
What motivates me? What am I good at? What is unique about my personality, talents and style? What do I excel at? What bores me to tears? What do others say drew me to them?
All good and well. But here are a few constants we all encounter on the road to the true self:
Failure happens. You will lose jobs, face financial insecurity and have to reinvent your career. Some of the most successful women I’ve met in my life have transformed themselves as a result of loss. It’s only failure if you don’t get back up and re-start your engine.
La Jolie MLN launching in April 2021
Follow our journey on Instagram or Facebook La.Jolie.MLN
Website coming soon
: www.lajolie-mln.com
We would love to hear from you.  Let us know your thoughts and any topics you would want to hear about.   blog@lajolie-mln.com 
Next blog Jan 31: Doing Business By Doing Good
About Daisy Malek-Shadid
As a little girl, I would be asked what I want to be when I grow up.  I would confidently reply, I want to be a clothing designer and a respected leader.  Fast forward 30 years, after working in the corporate world, traveling, getting married and having children, the aspirations of my youth inspire me today.  I want to create clothes that make women feel both feminine and powerful, beautiful and strong, sophisticated and elevated. It takes a moment to make a first impression.  Dressing well sets the tone, so one can own that moment.  
It is important to La Jolie MLN to give back to the community, to women who don’t have the same opportunity as others. And, for that reason, 10% of every purchase will go toward our goal to donate 100 dresses to Dress for Success, a non-for-profit organization that supports underprivileged women to achieve economic independence by providing various services - one of them professional attire for interviews and new employment.  For more information about “Dress for Success” please visit their website at dressforsuccess.org.
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yule shoot your eye out
my own contribution to the hinnychristmasfest
@thisiskaliyug thanks so much for suggesting lowkey enemies to lovers/hardcore competitors to lovers with office romance✨ and @gryffindormischief thanks for being yourself hehe
Ao3 // FFnet
.
“Potter.”
“Weasley,” Harry grunts as she passes - no, prances by him, flaming red hair flying after her and he can practically swear she meant to give him a mouthful of it; swish-swishing that long hair by his desk every morning, a constant reminder of their little rivalry of sorts.
He throws one last glance at her and sips heartily from his coffee, rolls his chair closer to the desk and prepares to submit his request for holiday overtime. That, at least, ought to give him good leverage over Weasley, a swift climb up the corporate ladder just in time for the yearly evaluation rounds and promotion proposals. Certainly Harry won’t be seeing her giving up Christmas, with her big family and stupid boyfriend (whose existence Harry still can’t prove, but he’s also very positive she has) and blah, blah, blah.
Ugh, he takes another long sip and punches the enter button on his keyboard. Good, done. Working on Christmas day. It’s all perfectly not sad. And if this doesn’t land him employee of the year, Harry doesn’t know what else will do it.
At the far end corner of their shared space office, Harry can see Weasley smirk and this time it doesn’t bother him. Nope, because he’s working on Christmas and he’s been in the office early ever since July whereas she keeps popping in late (although with zero consequences, to Harry’s dismay, but maybe the CEO’s her boyfriend, then? Harry tells himself he has to chill by this point) and all of this combined gives her exactly no reason to be smug. Harry’s about to prove, once and for all, that he’s simply better.
And as though they’d read his mind, an email from HR announcing Harry Potter as the sole saviour of the company on Christmas day zooms into his inbox. With an intense feeling of determination, with great satisfaction, Harry double clicks on it to read -
Harry Potter and Ginny Weasley up for Christmas day
What the fuck? What the actual -
Harry feels like punching someone, especially HR people who really don’t get the point. It was supposed to be his moment, goddammit.
The sheer audacity of her!
“Oi, what are you playing at?” Harry slams his fist on her desk, very disappointingly not startling her at all.
She does scan him for a long moment, pen dangling at the corner of her mouth, with every move revealing that one freckle peppered above her lip. For no apparent reason, Harry’s hands grip at her desk a little tighter.
“Scared I might get the promotion, Potter?”
“No, just calling you out.”
She snorts. “What for?”
“Being a copycat,” Harry sputters, a little bit of spit landing on her face, right between some particularly nice clusters of freckles. Harry pretends nothing happened and continues to stare angrily.
Weasley wipes her face, bored, rolling her pretty brown eyes at him, her hand pushing Harry away with surprising force as she gets up, “Aw, baby Potter’s mad I stole his toys. Don’t worry, I know how to share, unlike others,” she grins wickedly, one finger hooked through her mug’s handle as she shuffles away to the office kitchen. “See you on Christmas, Potter.”
“And every other day till then,” Harry mutters before he spins on his heels and makes his way back to his desk, ready to smash his face into the keyboard and call it a day.
****
His house is dark and cold when he leaves early in the morning, determined to step through the office doors way ahead of Weasley.
Harry blows out a crisp breath of air, slides his hands into his pockets and shivers. Daylight barely reaches the street, mounds of ice and snow glazing the sidewalk as he saunters to the tube, hat pulled lower over his ears, cheeks growing ever rosy in the winter chill. His mind strays to the office coffee machine, the feel of warm liquid rolling down his throat to make him feel cosy and light already vivid in his imagination.
As expected, except the few passengers in his cart who rather look like they’re about to miss a train to their families, Harry’s the only corporate yippee ready to clock in at dawn on Christmas day. But what’s he got to lose? No family, no significant other, no pet. Not even a sordid Christmas tree - Harry refused to pretend this year.
He checks his watch before the tube doors slide open: 06:05, mind the gap, hop off, get to work, win that promotion, find some meaning in your life. Ten minutes later, he’s walking victoriously through the office doors, feeling cool, feeling bloody brilliant, mate. He beat Weasley.
“Morning,” a bleary voice wafts its way to him from the coffee machine.
Or apparently he didn’t.
“What? Did you actually sleep here?” Harry spats, harassed, slapping his mittens and hat on his desk a little too forcefully. She, in turn, just looks at him, sleepy, and yawns.
“One of my brothers dropped me ten minutes ago on his way to the airport. Visiting the other brother in Romania.”
Harry generously offers a non-committal grunt, cursing himself for that extra ten minutes in bed he allowed himself this morning, as a Christmas treat. Well, if he needed anymore proof Christmas miracles don’t exist…
“You can drop that frown, as sexy as I find the brooding look,” Weasley says and sips her coffee, plonking a fresh mug on his own desk and Harry’s stomach inexplicably churns. “I’m not here to snatch away your promotion.”
“You’re not?” Harry says stupidly.
There’s pity in her gaze when she locks eyes with him, lone freckle tempting as she lets herself smile a little before she speaks, fingers brushing over his arm when she walks away right after. “No. Ridiculous as it sounds, my family’s away for Christmas, the whole lot of them. Guess I just didn’t want to spend it alone and feeling sorry for myself.”
His heart nearly leaps out of his chest and he doesn’t really know why - just that she’d have been alone today, and perhaps that small sad smile on her lips. Harry slides lamely into his chair, his knees jelly.
He punches the keyboard heavily as he files in yearly reports for his team, he oversees and nearly micromanages all still pending projects, he writes cheerful follow-up emails and gentle reminders that aren’t really that gentle as far as he’s concerned (wanting to whoop someone with a chair over the back of their head for pretending to do some tasks they clearly didn’t is miles away from gentle in Harry’s dictionary, but, eh, he still wants his job so what can you do).
Still, every now and then, a pair of green eyes drifts to a flush of freckles and long, red hair coating her hand-knit Christmas sweater, his mind losing focus for the briefest of moments before he shakes himself back to reality and to the task at hand.
Two cups of coffee and zero small talk later, his eyes’ little escapades seem to get a little out of hand. Alright, ridiculously out of hand as Harry catches himself typing in ‘ginger’ and ‘freckles’ and, worst of all, ‘Weasley’ in the project document he’d been working on. The last one of them especially stares him in the face like the foulest betrayal.
With an exasperated huff, Harry scrapes his chair back, rummages in his bag and proceeds to the kitchen, pointedly not looking her way. He’s not himself today, but bloody hell if he can’t power through it.
“What are you having?”
Harry jumps at the sound of her voice, fork clattering against the small table. Bits of meat fly on his face and he sighs, wipes them dejectedly. His mind had been...off somewhere.
“Sorry, are we not speaking? Should I eat in perfect silence?”
Harry swallows the last of his bite and pushes the chair in front of him with his foot under the table. “Don’t let me stop you.”
And perhaps he did sound as grouchy as he heard himself because she neither attempts any form of chat nor does she spare him a second glance. Harry can’t completely understand what’s possessed him so he swiftly proceeds to do what he does best: he sulks.
“Oh, bloody buggering -”
His eyes nearly pop out of his head as Weasley peels her sweater off to inspect the fresh stain of gravy she’d just adorned it with, leaving her standing in front of him in a tank top. Who knew humans could have so many freckles.
And cleavage.
And skin that looks so soft, so bloody soft he might actually touch it -
“You do realise you’re gawking, right?” Weasley throws him an amused look, her fingers wiping furiously at the sweater with a napkin.
...He had very much not realised that.
Face on fire, Harry feels his feet take him quickly away from the crime scene before his brain can even command them to. He’d been gawking at her chest. He definitely had been and she’d caught him and now all he wants is to hide under his desk forever and quite probably stop feeling so uncomfortable in his chair. Is there any possibility his pants have suddenly shrunk two sizes?
He’d gladly hit himself with a crowbar now. Best Christmas ever.
Twenty minutes (and a world of intense embarrassment) later, Harry figures he can send his brain home for the day and let his instincts guide him. They can’t do much worse anyway.
And what they do is take him straight to Weasley’s desk and open his big mouth wide enough for more embarrassing words to roll off it.
“Why?”
Weasley looks up at him, luckily fully clothed now, and blinks. “Why what?”
“Why would you have felt sorry for yourself?”
She blinks again. Then seems to remember, thank god and all his angels, as Harry’d been one second away from activating his brain again and running out of there.
“Oh. Christmas tends to have that effect on people who’re not involved, I’ve been told.”
“Who’re - I mean, you’re not, erm, are you not seeing someone?”
Please stop.
“I’m not aware of it, at least,” she drawls, eyebrows rising.
“Not even the CEO?”
Alright, somebody kill him or he will himself.
“Are you quite alright?” Weasley laughs heartily and Harry is very grateful to notice she thinks it was a joke.
“No, I must...I must have gone a bit mad,” he tries on a grin, hand ruffling his hair at the back. “Been living on my own for too long, you see, plays tricks on the mind.”
She gives him a long, appraising look, the feeling of discomfort washing over him again and Harry shifts on his feet.
“What’s your excuse?”
“I’m very good with women.”
She snorts, “Clearly.”
There’s a moment of silence between them and Harry’s surprised to discover he doesn’t really feel out of place like that, sitting next to her.
“Cookies? Mum sent me some, they’re brilliant,” Weasley offers with a smile and his stomach churns a bit. Weird, he’d just eaten though.
“Thanks,” he grins and swipes one from the tin. “Wow, they are brilliant! Your Mum’s brilliant.”
“I’ll tell her that, although she might try to adopt you after. Feed you till you’re not as skinny.”
“Oi,” Harry brandishes the cookie under her freckled nose, “I’m fit, not skinny.”
“Won’t hear me complain,” she winks, grins and sends Harry into a flustered fit, cookie crumbs flying up his nose as he violently coughs.
“Woah, mate, learn to take a compliment,” she jumps to smack him on the back until his coughs start to die down. “Alright, Harry?”
And it’s perhaps hearing her call him ‘Harry’ for the first time or maybe the fact that his brain is coated in cookie crumbs and some sort of flowery smell wafting up his nostrils all of a sudden, but Harry does feel a little pacified, a little mollified, something warm and calming growing in his chest.
“Yeah,” he says softly, “yeah, I’m alright. Thanks, Ginny.”
The splatters of freckles on her face seem to catch fire for the briefest of moments and it dawns on Harry that this is the first time they’ve called each other ‘Harry’ and ‘Ginny’. No ‘Potter’ and ‘Weasley’, no jibes and snark attached to it, no double meaning. It’s strange and confusing, but also somehow nice - and that’s the odd part. It shouldn’t feel like that.
“I’ll, er - I’ll be at my desk. Lots to finish, end of the year, you know,” he offers with an awkward smile as he backs away slowly, suddenly needing as much space as possible between himself and her.
Ginny’s smile fades a bit, but then she shrugs and slides into her chair again.
“If you want more cookies, you know where to find them.”
Harry nods stiffly and drops in his own chair, a safe half-office between them. All he needs to do now is focus on his work, clock out at six and pretend this day and its strange lack of hostilities never happened. Go back to calling her Weasley, go back to being Potter, neck in neck for that promotion and mostly anything involving a competition of sorts.
Yeah, that ought to do it.
Only instead of that, Harry’s eyes stray to her, his fingers annoyingly suspended in time and space when they should have been typing, his mind conjuring images of her smiling at him, of her in the kitchen, wiping away gravy in her tank top, when it should’ve quenched numbers and spewed corporate shit in tens of emails. Why is he so obsessed with gravy anyway?
Harry happens to ruffle his hair as he stares at her again and she happens to look back, grinning, then ducking her head back to work. Harry ruffles his hair some more, pushes his chair back and forth with the sole of his feet, then stares at her again. It becomes very clear to him that he’s out of control and he doesn’t even understand why.
Perhaps he’d been actually staring at the office Christmas tree, right next to her desk?
Before he can throw himself through the glass wall to stop his little trip down the mental rabbit hole, Harry gets up to do something he’d been dreading all year: he approaches the office printer.
Yes, it’s an endeavour that requires a great amount of being dramatic for he who dares disturb the printer’s slumber and no mantras or meditation or prayer has ever worked in getting it to actually function. As far as he’s concerned, Harry’s not below kicking it once or twice to get the job done and it’s exactly what he’s about to do if the bloody thing squeaks ‘error’ at him again.
“Work, you flaming piece of -” but Harry bites his words before he can fully give the printer a piece of his mind because, Christmas miracle, it starts beeping and burping and actually printing what he’s asked it to print.
“Huh, I am a little turned on right now,” Ginny’s voice sounds dangerously close to his ear and Harry nearly jumps out of his skin. When’s she got there?
“When did you get here?” Harry asks, leaning heavily on the printer as it continues to spit out paper with alarming speed.
“Seemed like you needed help,” Ginny raises her eyebrows, brown eyes scanning his face, “but clearly you’ve got it covered. I do like a man who can tame beasts. Very macho,” she winks and he’s suddenly both uncomfortable in his clothes and a little out of breath.
“Had to show it who’s boss,” Harry mumbles back, breathless.
A quick head to toe glance from her has his windpipe constricting, his fingers grasping for the printer desk for support.
“And are you the boss?” Ginny grins, her eyes intently on him, and Harry’s head probably inflates because what he says is -
“Would you want me to be?” And he doesn’t even stammer.
For a moment, she appears as surprised as he is to hear those words roll down his tongue. Then there’s a blazing look in her eyes when she steps closer to him and talks, her voice sending shivers down his spine.
“What would that imply?”
“Probably lots of boring stuff,” he blabers, no longer aware of what he’s saying, his brain only focusing on the decreasing amount of space between his body and hers.
“Then we should change that,” she whispers and closes her eyes - and, oh no, Harry’s brain is screaming, screeching really, that Ginny - no, Weasley’s about to kiss him. The printer hits him in the back, evil, vile thing, and shoves him against her, her lips landing awkwardly over the prickling skin on his neck.
There’s a moment of silence before she peels her body off his, Harry’s arms going limp around her, and she’s looking at him with something akin to horror, stretching all over her freckly face. Harry’s heart leaps a little.
“Oh, fuck, Harry, sorry, I -”
But his heart leaps a little more and there’s that same smell of flowers thoroughly numbing his senses, that one small freckle above her upper lip, her long, red hair cascading down her shoulders. Harry takes in all of it and finally it hits him. He probably should’ve realised faster anyway.
“Fuck it,” he groans and kisses her.
He kisses her till her back presses into the nearby wall, kisses her until he forgets to breathe and has to come up for air, kisses her until there’s flowers growing in his brain and sun lighting fire in his chest and Harry asks her if she’s alright with all of this.
And she is, she gloriously is and Harry lets her kiss him hungrily, push him into the angry printer and curl her fingers through his hair. He lets her kiss him in all the ways she wants.
It’s ridiculous, actually, how he’s never seen it, that he fancied her, that he wanted her, that it had never been about who’s winning but about the two of them keeping close, building something. He understands it now, when her mouth is slanting over his and her tongue licks down his bottom lip, him moaning, groaning low as her hands sneak inside his sweater. He sees it now, when he’s tasting her, feeling her body press into his, feel the softness of her skin as his palms rest on her jaw, knot into her hair right after.
And now that he finally sees it, he wants all of her.
“Ginny,” he breathes hard against her mouth, “where do you want to stop?”
“Thought you were the boss,” she grins, her chest rising quickly as she pants, brown eyes blazing.
It’s her gaze that undoes him, that certainty and confidence pooling from her eyes, making him forget himself and, along with it, everything else.
So Harry sweeps her in his arms and perches her atop the printer, gloriously silencing it.
“Much better,” Ginny grins and dips her head to seek his mouth again, holding onto him as Harry combs his fingers through her hair, lets them feel at the hems of her sweater, feel the cotton fabric in her tank top.
Ginny locks her legs around his hips, pulls him closer, licks and nibbles at his neck and Harry feels himself harden, painfully so, her name rolling down his tongue. She presses herself over him, the heels of her boots pushing him into her core and Harry moans her name again.
“It sounds nice, when you say my name,” she whispers into his ear and he groans.
“Ginny, Ginny, Ginny,” Harry breathes, his hands sliding inside her sweater, up her back, feeling the hard plastic clasp of her bra there. He pops it open.
She presses herself into him again and Harry’s brain goes mush with the feel of her breasts in his palms, feeling them through her top before Ginny grunts, curses and shoves her sweater, tank top and bra off in a messy ball.
Harry gawks.
“Harry,” Ginny bites her lip and gestures vaguely that he should return to what he was previously doing. But, of course, that was in a world without her naked chest in front of him, wasn’t it?
“Oh, yeah, sorry,” Harry finally acknowledges and resumes his hungry kisses.
His mouth tastes down her neck, over her chest, takes one breast in and traces his tongue over the small freckles peppering her skin there. He kisses her all over, tastes one nipple and finds himself thrusted further against her body when Ginny moans, grips at his hair and tugs him into her.
His mouth is still busy with her breasts when Ginny’s hands fly to his zipper, yank it down forcefully before she grabs his face and kisses him hard, insatiably.
“Let’s do it,” Ginny breathes between kisses and Harry feels like he’s a moan away from taking her right there, over the printer, corporate HR rules be damned.
“Here?”
But instead of answering, Ginny simply wiggles off her jeans, kicks off her boots, hooks her fingers around the hems of her knickers and tugs them down.
“Ginny,” Harry groans, swallows hard, his entire body throbbing with the sight of her, bare and beautiful on top of the office printer, her back leaning against the wall, her thighs, freckled and full, open.
He stops thinking then, mesmerised and drunk on her in a way he’d never been before. Harry tugs down his trousers, boxers, and closes the distance.
He enters her slowly, his knees shaking in anticipation, sheer pleasure coursing through him as he feels the warmth of her thighs, the warmth of her tightening around him, her hands wildly into his hair as she breathes near his ear. Harry nearly lets himself go.
Then he starts moving, his knees rubbing against the desk as he finds his rhythm, the back of her thighs scraping against the edges of the printer as she quickly adjusts, as she starts to respond to him. Ginny moans when he pushes in deep and Harry goes faster, a little harder till her legs are locked around him and his arms are wrapped around her body, holding her closer as he rocks them both.
“Harry,” she moans again and he needs to push faster, thrust deeper, harder, her nails digging into his back. His glasses slide down his nose with the speed of their motions and Harry presses his forehead into her shoulder, feels her gripping at his rumpled hair.
Ginny thrusts her pelvis into him, her hand reaching between their bodies, fingers curling around his length and she squeezes gently. Three times she does it and it’s enough for him to turn completely blind, an explosion of black at the back of his eyelids and he shivers with release.
Ginny holds onto his shoulders as her body trembles, shakes with that final wave she’d ridden. When it’s over, she’s like mush in his arms, soft and warm and smelling of flowers.
Her beautiful brown eyes lock with his and Ginny kisses him again, this time softly, gently, her cheek resting over his right after.
“We’ll have lots of explaining to do,” Harry sighs, relaxed, not very aware of what he’s babbling.
“I’ll just bribe the surveillance camera bloke,” she shrugs and pulls him in for another searing kiss.
“What if we clocked out early today?” Harry smiles against her lips, feels her smiling just as widely.
“We’ve already established that you’re the boss,” Ginny winks, shifting slightly so their bodies are no longer connected. Harry instantly misses it. “We probably should clean up a bit, though. We’ve made a mess over the printer.”
His green eyes travel to the spot she’d indicated and he feels both horror and his face catching fire - what a mess indeed.
“Reckon it’d be easier if we just kicked it out the window.”  
Ginny laughs heartily, hopping off the desk with surprising agility to find her clothes. “Say no more. Vile thing had it coming anyway.”
And, at the end of the day, Harry has to admit that he’d been a little persuaded to believe in Christmas miracles: where he’d woken up in a cold bed, he now goes to sleep in a warm one, another soul wrapped cosily in his arms, the smell of love and flowers in the air above them.
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dollsome-does-tumblr · 7 months ago
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here is everything -- literally everything -- i know about supernatural, just so i can convey how totally impractical my new investment in its ending is:
dean and sam (who is REALLY DEAN! stars hollow dean!!!) are brothers and their dad is jeffrey dean morgan (lotta deans in this mix) and their mom is dead, because she’s a woman on supernatural. probably the mom was killed by demons. i don’t remember this at all, but it just seems to make a lot of sense.
i feel like sam’s the fancy brother who went to college and dean’s the rustic stay-at-home brother who’s spent all his time being a demon hunter with their (dead?? alive???????? i don’t know!) dad’s bff, a duck dynasty-looking man who i want to say is named bobby but probably isn’t. also, i might be thinking of jack and shawn on boy meets world and not supernatural here, because that was definitely their situation. except the demon hunting.
for some reason they decide to hang out again and be demon hunters together and drive some old car that car people find important but i cannot. is it an impala? also, they have guns or something, maybe. bam bam, demons!
i have literally no idea what happens after this, alongside from probably a bunch of creepy monster-of-the-week episodes for 3 years, blah blah blah. also, there’s probably man pain and jeans and flannels and ... cowboy boots? or is cowboy boots a step too far? do they wear cowboy boots or do they just SEEM like they should wear cowboy boots?
dean goes to hell for some reason. probably for sam! (i’ll tell dean what i’ve yelled at rory gilmore a million times over the years: he ain’t worth it!)
CASTIEL SHOWS UP! this is where i actually started watching!
he’s like, “I LOVE THIS ONE THOUGH EVERYTHING IN ME COMMANDS THAT I MUSTN’T SULLY MYSELF WITH SUCH A BASIC BITCH HUMAN EMOTION, I SHALL DRAG HIM UP FROM HELL AND LEAVE MY HANDPRINT ON HIM FOREVER, DON’T READ INTO IT”
we all read into it
castiel’s body is some dude named ... jimmy novak?? ... but castiel steals it or something so he can wear that trenchcoat, because it’s not like you can when you don’t have a corporeal form. what choice did he have? that trenchcoat is hot to trot!
castiel walks into a big old creepy warehouse or something and he has SHADOW WINGS and sparks, actual sparks are flying everywhere! and dean’s like, “DAMN!”
then they’re just in love after that, but like, neither of them are ever going to mention it. sometimes they stand Very Close or Gaze Very Long.
at some point, dean kisses a red-headed lady (also an angel???) and castiel has to Look Away because he’s overwhelmed with Envy
also at some point, castiel smears a lot of blood on, like, a beige hotel wall or something and dean’s like, “DAMN!!!!!!!!” i do not remember what this has to do with their relationship status, but i think probably something.
i THINK the angels are probably like the angels in good omens and they’re just like, “ew, castiel, dump your boyfriend, you’re making a fool of yourself and also us!” and castiel’s like, “ha ha, what boyfriend? as if!” but inside he’s like, “YIKES” and also like “I SHALL NEVER DUMP HIM”
dean takes cas to a strip club or a brothel or something and thinks cas’ reaction is hilarious and adorable and they stroll fondly together through the night streets???????
that ends where i watched!
felicia day, beloved by nerds everywhere, plays a nerd named ... charlie? she eventually has a gf, i think, but she also dies horribly. felicia day, i mean. and probably also the girlfriend, honestly!
at some point i think more ladies show up, but i’m not liking their chances.
cas gets really depressed and dresses all sloppy for awhile there and dean’s probably like, “WHERE IS MY SWEET ANGEL OF BEFORE?”
then he goes back to normal for some reason
a bunch of biblical demonic and angelic figures start showing up!!! just all over the place! is one of them played by the dude who was jacob on lost, or someone who looks like him, or am i 1000% inventing that? whatever the case: there’s no way any of them are as amusing as their good omens counterparts. (or ARE THEY?)
i think supernatural might also be a show on the show?????? or maybe a stage play that’s kind of got a glee vibe? i have no idea what to do with this.
dean and cas hug approximately 2.5 times in the next decade
in 15x18, an absolutely RIDICULOUS number to exist for a tv episode, castiel sensed when the tired, joyless world needed canon destiel most, and he finally dropped a very teary and effervescent ILU, preceded by an excellent “here’s all the reasons you’re awesome even though you hate yourself” love speech that actually i found pretty nice, even as someone whose knowledge of supernatural is, well, THE ABOVE. dean makes some (i honestly think sort of tender) faces like “boo, say what???” but he doesn’t get to find out what because cas gets gobbled up by a bunch of black gooey stuff (ew) and dragged down to, i guess, super hell! but not before he can leave a handprint on dean AGAIN, for the ~symmetry~!!!!!!
and that’s what you missed on My History With Supernatural!
somebody who’s seen it, tell me how i did!!!!
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zombiegurlmode · 7 months ago
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Camren is a dead ship. Get over it bish.
I thought about whether i truly wanted to write this or not. Then again, i thought to myself, this is my vent area i will write whatever the hell i want. You no likey you getaway from me. Simple fact of life right?
So a little background story before we dice the meat and butcher it into pieces. Sony is one of those companies that i hate to love and love to hate. It all started with their almighty creation the PlayStation. Such a phenomal brand that it paved the way for the revolutionizing the gaming industry we know of today. And then lo and behold sony is also famed for killing off its own brands by their lousy marketing efforts or failed attempts. Exhibits A to C: sony vaio, sony erickson, PS Vita (probably one of their greatest massacre of all time). So when i learned that 5H were actually part of the Sony umbrella corporation, (ooo this is a reference. Hint: refer to my handle) all i could think about is who’s the next victim. Well we got our casualty right?
Anyway, next stop on our background story is i’ve heard of 5H way before i’ve learned of camren. I mean i couldn’t even be bothered whoever the hell are the members of 5H were. All i know is that i really liked their song work from home and then I listened to their other songs and appreciated some of their other songs while others not so much. Personally, i just thought of 5H before as another run of the mill generic knock off version of Spice Girls. Funnily enough, they did their own version of Spice Girls. Then i came across never be the same and instanly liked it. I never even knew that she was a former 5H member. Honestly, i still couldn’t be bothered at that time.
Fast track a few months or a year, i had a major setback with my sexuality. I encountered a colleague of mine whom i have developed strong affections for. This totally knocked me off my orbit and bothered me since A) she’s married and B) i’m in denial. I mean at the back of my head i already knew since i was young. I was just suppressing it. No need to go into details since most of us are on the same boat on this. You know the usual ploy of disasterrific coming out agenda and the whole enchalada. So to eleviate some of my concerns, i even ended up consulting professional help from a friend of mine who is practicing professionally. I learned from her that there are even conversion camps to somehow “change us back to normal”. Creepy if you ask and i’m even downplaying it. Anyway, i saw in a facebook post one of my friends attending a pride march here in the Philippines. So i gathered my courage and spoke to her and ended up coming out to her.
Fast track again, she introduced me to camren and the rest is history. I was hooked, lined, and sunk with this dead ship. And i haven’t been the same ever since. I read Bashuda’s post here (hope i got your name right). An open letter to lauren jauregui. And all she’ve said, i’m willling to bet most camren shippers underwent too. We are all looking for that special kind of love that knocks us out of our orbit, takes our breath away, and drives us crazy up the wall. The all consuming type of love that you know is worth every damn fight you’ll have to go through. And somehow, we shippers see that in camren and gives us the hope and courage that the love we all seek do truly exists in this otherwise selfish, relentless, and brutal world we all live in.
So now unto to the main agenda, Lauren’s live or podcast or whatever we call it now with becky g. All i got is that she doesn’t like being called daddy. I concede defeat you shippers arguing in wattpad can now be laid to rest. It’s now finally settled straight from the horse’s mouth. We now can definitely without a doubt say who tops. Hahahaha. Ok, just kidding. I just couldn’t resist. I mean she had it coming. I’m just feeding my crazy self. Although, you know she did say daddy’s get your sh*t *wink wonk*. You know I wouldn’t mind being called a daddy hahahaha. Again couldn’t resist. At this point, i’m just twisting her words and being playful.
Since i can’t control myself from taking shots at her words, let’s continue on with my tomfoolery. Lauren again gave us another proof. This time she proved herself again that she is in fact a living breathing meme. And this meme came into my mind:
Literally no one: ....
Lauren: you know camren is not real blah blah blah
Cs: who even ask about camren? It’s a dead ship. You said it yourself it’s not real. Get over it bish. (Honestly lauren. Joke’s on you bud)
Ok, ok, all kidding and lousy jokes aside. What i truly can take away from all her passionate speech is this LJ1 IS COMING!!!!!!
I mean denying camren again? Real shocker. News flash to me. Really i swear i almost had a gay panic in the office no less. Honestly lauren it’s 2020 and covid is out here doing it’s thing and your back reliving a dead ship no less and retelling yet again the same things you’ve said before. Oh don’t get me wrong tho. I am not downplaying in any way what you have to go through. I mean come on for crying out loud my front is still in the closet quaking like a damn moron. Look what i truly do not appreciate is why is it about the cs again huh? Come on, it’s not like we tag you in all your accounts to chant our undying faithfulness to our ship that has been turned officially into submarine. Where our beloved captain may or may not be in hiding in plain sight or maybe our delusional minds are conjuring these thoughts. Neither do we publicly declare our posts or force anyone to believe in our conspiracy theory. We have a very dedicated community much like a dedicated server where we gather like cults and study our fine specimens... sorry i meant closely observe and adore our ship. We have a special place where we can commune and comment and make fun of our created fanfics out of the very fine figments of the numerous authors’ machinations. And yet here we are people trespassing on our free space and demanding to cease and desist this atrocious camren lunacy wherein you couldn’t just possibly stumble upon camren accidentally unless you were intending to. Because as i’ve mentioned before i’ve heard of 5H and camila cabello way before i encountered the anomaly of camren. I even searched about 5H because of camila cabello’s involvement in the group. And not in one of those searches did it yield to camren. Not until i was introduced to it by a friend. And now i am clearly a camren fiend.
Anywho, quite obvious to me that the marketing for LJ1 has begun and we are now all entering the hook phase by drawing in attention by creating new drama or reliving or reenvisioning past established conflicts to fit into the narrative. Well i’m excited for its official release and that’s all i have left to say now. Have a pleasant day everyone. The madness had finally ended here.
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burgeonmeraki · 7 months ago
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My Pregnancy Story
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My pregnancy test and first ultrasound. He’s 7 weeks old here.
Back in 2016, it was supposedly my career breakthrough. It was my second year working and doing my apprenticeship before I take my licensure board exam in Architecture. I quit my job in Bataan and came to Manila to work, and somehow get away with my family issues. I also broke up with my ex-boyfriend at that time because we're also having issues. So I was broken-hearted, and I became precipitous that's why I ended up getting pregnant. My dreams literally fall apart because of my recklessness.
Before I found out that I was pregnant, I always have this feeling that I am pregnant. I have been waiting for my period, and at first, I thought I was just delayed for a few days or weeks because that's pretty normal to my condition. My period isn't accurate. Usually, I have a longer cycle. But it's been a month, and I am getting anxious. I asked my best friend to buy me a pregnancy test because I need to know.
The next morning, I took the test during my first pee. They said it's more accurate if you do it in the morning. And just like that, it was POSITIVE. I was scared but I didn't cry. I don't have the energy to be so emotional at that time because I'm really not a morning person LOL. But I think I remember saying "FUCK" when I saw the two lines. It was a mixed emotion for me. I was worried with a lot of things like..
How to tell my parents that I am pregnant?
I was scared of the operation or surgery, and the process of giving birth.
Lastly, am I going to be a good mom?
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My first ultrasound at MDCare Ob-gyn Ultrasound Clinic, Fisher Mall, QC.
I finally decided to get an ultrasound because I was worried that if I'm really pregnant, the baby should be okay or alive inside of me. And the reason why I was worried because I have been drinking a lot of alcohol, and I had a bad tonsillitis back then that I had a fever for a few days and I drink medicine for that. So I had to know if he's okay in my tummy. My OB gave me some medicine though to avoid miscarriage.
I told the father of my child that I was pregnant, and we're not in a relationship at that time. He said that he's willing to marry me and take the obligation. And somehow, I felt relieved because I'm not going to be alone on this journey.
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My second checked up. 12 weeks old.
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I’m now eating for TWO haha.
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Work Attire. My bump is showing already so I thought I need to wear clothes that’s not fitted anymore.
I was working as a Technical Assistant at Fisher Builders Corporation. No one in my colleague knows that I am pregnant. So I need to hide my bump. Aside from I work at the construction site sometimes, I don't want any rumors about me circulating at the office, plus I just started there. I just want to do my job peacefully. That’s it!
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My bump, my bump, my bump. Check it out! I don’t know how many weeks or months I was in here. I forgot na! LOL. 
I have so many horrible experiences with my pregnancy.
FIRST TRIMESTER:
I had morning sickness but usually occurs at night which was weird, I know!
My sense of smell became super sensitive that if I smell something stinky I would throw the hell up.
I became more picky with food. The food that I usually eat before doesn’t look appetizing to me anymore.
I had a bad breakout, and when I say bad, its really, really bad. See for yourself. Scroll down!
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Told ya, its bad! Ugh! My OB said that its normal because my hormones is changing. And I’ve read that half of half of pregnant people can expect to develop acne. In my case, my acne was severe here.
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First Trimester Photos.
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After my blood test at Capitol Medical Center, Quezon City.
One thing I didn't know about being pregnant was I have to go through a lot of blood tests. And that means I have to go through a lot of needles. And I hate needles! But later on, I found out that I have high pain tolerance, and you'll find out more about that on my next blog. LOL.
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At 16 weeks old, I found out that I am having a Baby Boy.
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My last day at work.
After 4 months of working at Fisher Builders Corporation, I decided to quit my job. I had to quit because it's not safe and healthy for me to work there. The company has a townhouse which is located in front of the Fisher Mall. I was living there with my best friend and some of the staff who also work in Fisher Mall. The rent was free, we just have to pay for the electricity and water bill. So every day, going to work I have to cross the overpass that has no roof. For me to cross the overpass, I have to climb up 20 steps and another 20 steps down. Since it has no roof, it was hot during the day, and it sucks more when it’s raining. The area was polluted, most definitely the area is not safe if you're going out alone during the night. So I had to quit. My career got held off, and it was all my fault. 
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This was the day we told my family that I am pregnant.
So my baby daddy went home from US to the Philippines to visit me and wooed my family. My family doesn't know anything about him, and they didn't know that I broke up with my ex, so they're all shocked. At first, we were having a hard time telling them, like the timing was always off. But then after 2 days of our stay, we need to tell them. I talked to my sister first, and I was so nervous. We both end up crying because she doesn't want another history to repeat itself. Okay, so I have 2 sisters, both of them are single moms. My oldest sister's ex cheated on her, and the same thing goes for my older sister. She just wants a different life for me so she was upset and sad at that time. And while I'm talking to my sister, baby daddy was writing his speech LOL.
We first talk to my Dad because my mom wasn't at home. He did all the talking and I was just crying the whole time. He said that he's going to take care of me, that he's going to marry me, blah blah blah. I can see in my Dad's eyes that he was sad and disappointed in me. Then my mom came, I thought she's going to go crazy but thankfully she didn't LOL. I was more scared of her than my Dad. After that, they just welcomed him into our family, and I was finally relieved.
His family already knows that I am pregnant, and they were not so into it at first because they don't know anything about me. Although I already met his parents and relatives during those supposedly fun time with him. It wasn't my intention to get pregnant, it wasn't my intention to have a relationship with him because I was planning to get back with my ex but sadly it didn't happen. They thought that I planned it all, they thought that I'm into his money or the citizenship which I'm not. It's just sad that people judge us so easily when they don't even know anything about us. I mean, yeah we're not rich but we're also not poor. I am educated and I have a college degree, and I was working my ass off that time. So why do I need those stuff that they're trying to accuse me of?
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I’m still trying to hide my bump in here.
Okay, so I quit my job and moved to Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City. They want me to live there so it would be easier for him and his family to visit me and the baby whenever they go home to the Philippines. They also want me to change my OB and have my check-ups at St. Lukes Medical Center, Taguig City.
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These are all the test requests from my Doctor. It’s a lot, I know!
From urine test to blood test, and pap smear. Then RPR where they test you if you have syphilis. HIV Screening, where they asked you a bunch of questions about your sex life which is embarrassing. Then the OGTT (Oral Glucose Tolerance Test) which mainly used for the diagnosis of gestational diabetes. You have to do fasting, afterward, someone will take your blood. Next, you will be asked to drink a liquid containing a certain amount of glucose, and wait for an hour. After an hour, they will take your blood again. Then again for the next hour. It was torture!
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Letter from Dr. Cervantes to Dr. Chua about my test result. 
During my first trimester back at my old doctor, I tested positive for Hepatitis B which is not good for the baby. And when I told that to my new doctor, she had me consult a Gastroenterologists who specialized in digestive diseases for a second opinion. I think this was the expensive test that I ever had. Like if we get the test at St. Lukes, it would cost us around 15k. So we went to the National Kidney and Transplant Institute, East Avenue, QC to have my test there, and it just cost us 11k. And OMG! They took a lot of blood on me. I think it was around seven test tubes. I almost faint! Just kidding LOL. And when the test result finally came, turns out that it was just my immunization most probably from the vaccination. Oh God! I felt so relieved.
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My medical record from my Doctor. 
This is my medical record from my Doctor, and she freaking pressured me to gain some weight. I have a check-up record there that is around September, and if you'll see in the picture I have the same weight (52.6kg). She told me that I need to gain 3kg on my next check-up, and I did! I really ate a lot, as in a lot of sweets haha.
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This is the picture that I posted on my Instagram to finally announced to the world that I am preggo. Obviously, a lot of people are shocked! LOL
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This is just a self-timer photoshoot LOL.
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More preggy photos. Hehehe
SECOND TO THIRD TRIMESTER:
CONS:
Since my tummy is getting big, I was having a hard time breathing.
My boobs got so huge, I had to buy bigger bras.
The frequent urination which is pretty normal but annoying LOL. 
Constipation, also normal to pregnant women. It's the pregnancy hormones which is the culprit behind it. Plus the vitamins (iron) that I'm drinking makes me more constipated that I had hemorrhoids.
Pregnancy heartburn.
Swelling of feet and legs.
I always feel hot, like sweaty.
Backaches. Oh God! It’s really bad.
I had rashes on my inner thigh every time I wear undies. So whenever I’m at home, I don’t wear undies. And if ever, it has to be cotton. My doctor prescribed me this lotion called Calamine.
PROS:
Courtesy lane for pregnant women, at the grocery store, taxi lane, when I got my passport, etc.
Feeling your baby moving inside of you. It may hurt sometimes whenever he kicks you, but most of the time it tickles.
Pregnancy sex. You know it! HAHAHA
Big boobs. Big ass. LOL
No menstrual cramps or bleeding every month. 
Cancer risk is reduced.
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Congenital Anomaly Scan Ultrasound at 23 weeks old.
A congenital Anomaly Scan is when the sonographer takes a closer look at your baby, and your womb (uterus). The sonographer will check if your baby is developing normally, and look at where the placenta is lying. The scan aims to look for any major physical abnormalities in the growing baby.
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4D Ultrasound at 28 weeks old.
It’s funny because he’s hiding his face with his hand. But I have a video of this ultrasound where we kind of wake him up just to see his face.
PHOTOSHOOT:
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Hair and Makeup By: Rah De Jesus
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Photographed By: Ronald Garcia
BTS By: Fatima Torcuato (my college bestie)
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Check-Up Time with my Mom. My doctor’s checking my baby’s heartbeat. 
At 36 weeks, I was tested positive for GBS. Group B Strep Infection is a type of bacterial infection that can be found in a pregnant woman’s vagina or rectum. This bacteria is normally found in about 25% of all healthy, adult women. Women who test positive for GBS are said to be colonized.
Take Note: GBS is not a sexually transmitted disease. You can't spread it on food or water either. Many healthy people carry it in their body for a short period, or it may come and go, or might always have it. You can only spread this by vaginal delivery to a newborn.
I was devastated when my doctor told me about this. But she makes sure that everything's going to be okay.
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36 weeks old.
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I’m about to pop. HAHA
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December 18, 2016 - I turned 24 years old.
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We’re all set! Just waiting for the baby to arrived. 
I know this blog is quite long but thank you for dropping by and reading this. Hope you enjoyed it, and I hope you learned a few things about my experience. Have a good day! :)
Love, Jamie ❤
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HGPC 17 - 21 | Koi to Producer 2 - 6 | Appare 5 - 8 | Fugou Keiji 4 - 6
...only just realised I was missing some tags. They should be there now or soon.
HGPC 17
Why do I get the feeling the Sawaizumi family will be held hostage one day…? (Maybe I’m just being negative?)
The episode title mentions Chiyu by name, so I wonder why the translation didn’t…
Customer service! You can’t get away from it, even in COVID times…! (Impressive!)
Hmm…you can actually read part of the booking for the Smiths in the book if you know the kanji.
I thought the Smiths would speak in English, but they actually speak in fluent Japanese if the word “susume” was any indication.
Ah, Sukoyaka sweet buns! (from the other episode about the festival)
HGPC 18
Don’t burn down your house with scented candles, kids!
Also remember to use your knees when lifting heavy boxes! (<- says a charity store volunteer, who does this stuff on the regular)
These days the mascots usually have a human form. I wonder if this is implying that particular direction…? (I woke up today and was craving a certain oneshot I’d read during my scanlation days…if it is, it would fill that niche nicely.)
I wonder if the kids will recognise this Ashita no Joe parody…?
HGPC 19
“…since you were young?”
Oh! Element of Wind again!
Koi to Producer 2
This almost feels like Victor is assigning a school project to Protag-chan…it’s a bit sad, really.
It’s nice they let Protag-chan have a personality.
It’s fine if you can’t read the katakana, but Gavin’s name is Haku in Japanese, so it throws out the immersion somewhat…also, I know I shouldn’t be complaining – I’m the target audience here – but do these guys look kinda similar or what…? (partially kidding)
High school sweethearts, huh? “Childhood friends” is my favourite angle of a romantic relationship, but it gets so overused by harems it comes around to being boring…!
I-Is this Stand My Heroes…?! (LOL…?)
Can we not with 1st person cam…?
As cute and dorky as this stuff gets…how does Gavin never get found?! Does nobody ever look up in this city?!? (I thought Evolvers were meant to be a secret…?)
GPS tracker? That’s no better than large corporations using your location data…Isn’t that creepy…?
Hold on, when did she get his phone number? You would assume it was before this entire chase after the boy happened, but still…?
LOL, the English on the board.
This anime is gonna cause me some frustration, but it gives the good stuff in roughly equal measure. It seems to omit the fact you interact via phone with your bois for intimacy (in the game).
Koi to Producer 3
LOL, that’s so clearly Gavin…
By googling, you find out Uptown and Queens are in New York.
Ohmygosh! Did the creators know I love the trope where only people with superpowers can move in certain circumstances?!
Uh…his name is Kira in Japanese? Did someone read the katakana wrong?
Pictured: Depressed bishonen eating bad pudding. (…That joke sounds better in my head. I forgot what meme I was meant to be parodying there, but I had a meme in mind.)
Lemme guess…this man (I dunno if it’s one of the previous bishies with an identical face or a new one) is looking for MC-chan. *sigh* Update: Yep, just Victor again. To be honest, I don’t like anyone who calls harsh words “their sign of love” – love should be honest and upfront. That’s how it becomes heartmelting.
Koi to Producer 4
Okay, in order, it seems to be hexadecimals, Javascript (you can tell from the “const”), some kind of profiles which are apparently for human lab rats (which seem to have some kind of nonsense filler text), a DNA model and DNA bases (ACGT).
The text on the screen says something along the lines of this being an official broadcast of this man’s arrest and this man was a genetic researcher. Obviously, if I wanted to put more attention into what it meant, I would, but I won’t sweat the details this time (because it doesn’t seem to impact the plot).
The guy’s name is Minor because minor key (geddit?)…that’s my guess.
I started playing the game due to this anime, if you didn’t know, and I unlocked an expert in ch. 2. I thought he was Minor, but turns out his name is Spine (an older man).
The diary, true to form, contains details about either one case or several cases, two involving children. The bottom of the 1st page says “if it’s fake, I’ll laugh”.
Hey, I once told Crunchyroll I wanted an anime about hacking (so is this a dream come true? I reveal all in the next sentence!). Hackers don’t congregate like this…they’d be too conspicuous, even with the secret hideout!
The code in the top left appears to be…C? I think? (Note they declare “unsigned int”.)
Kiro sometimes reminds me of Masayoshi (SamFlam)…it puts a derpy smile on my face.
*blah blah blah I’m Key* - Wuh…? F*** you, Kiro!!! (There is such a thing as piling too much cool stuff on to a character, y’know – I’m guilty of it in my own writing.)
3684 isn’t a very safe password (says someone who once aspired to be in cybersecurity).
What bugs me is that Simon is a perfectly fine name…it’s just a bit boring. Kiro/Kira I get (a bit), but Lucien/Simon…? *shrugs*
Ohh! Based MAPPA! Thank you for making this adaption look great!
Koi to Producer 5
Oh, I got an SR in the game recently and it has a line like, “Only a fool stays up all night to do others’ work. Victor talks like that a lot…
The sign so obviously says “Renka”, meaning “love flower”. “Loveland” really is a step down from that…
Where’s Gavin’s guest badge…?
“Happiness Noodle Store”…?
“…the end of our first year…”
If this weren’t a Chinese work by origin (or Japanese work by translation), I’m sure Protag-chan would have gone after Gavin, despite being told the contrary.
Kanya = Minor. I’ll take a note of that.
One of the books behind Minor says “Gale Start”…hmm…
That GPS tracker is still unintentionally creepy, IMHO.
Koi to Producer 6
…oh. (dejected) Probably a beach episode or something.
What the actual heck was going on with Lucien…? It’s like he was having a tiny stroke there…
Lucien’s power is listed as “???” in the game. I thought he was an aura-reader when he said “show me your colour”, but that shield thing he did means he might just have various psychic powers…? *shrugs* We’ll find out eventually.
Running in heels is hard…
LOL, that’s so clearly recreating a CG from one of the cards.
This is the 2nd time this has gone pseudo-isekai. As much as I like to joke about it…I fully expect someone to be sent to another world at this point.
I couldn’t possibly see Victor on any kind of game show, come to think of it.
Appare 5
This guy’s middle name is “Rich”! That’s silly!
A boombox from the 19th century…makes sense, somehow.
I only just (?) realised Al has a tiny tie on his usual outfit.
Back to the beginning already…just start!
Appare 6
…I just realised Appare mouths “I got it!” in the OP.
Al Lion (sic…?)
Isn’t Sofia in that train…? Update: She might have been, she might not. Hard to tell when they don’t confirm.
This series seriously could’ve done with a dub…Even with weird hokey Hetalia accents, it would be good stuff.
These bunches of people at designated points…reminds me of the book I was reading while in Japan. The Long Walk by Stephen King (part of a compilation). It still gives me shivers down my spine when I remember it.
This “leave in the middle of the night” thing reminds me of the Amazing Race.
“Valley of Despair” is made-up, but Death Valley exists. It’s one of the hottest places on earth, hence the name.
LOL, Kosame scores himself one (1) prarie dog and two (2) Hototos.
I thought Appare was being inconsiderate at first…but he’s being considerate, in his own way.
Oh! I didn’t realise, but Saito Soma is Al.
Appare 7
“It’s not one plus one, but one times one!” – LOL.
Hybrid engine? In the 1900s? Hmm…
LOL, I think Al just did a hadouken.
This stuff’s like an animated Galaxy Brain meme! It’s amazing!
I managed to successfully predict – without watching ahead – Appare would catch himself with his traps.
Kosame with his hair down…is rare. Not exactly attractive because we have to care about the racers rather than lust after them (and the artstyle actually prevents me from doing so, because it’s deliberately quite cartoony), but it’s rare.
Appare is surprisingly childish…that’s what makes him more than a Sheldon Cooper, I think.
The spelling of the place is actually “Ely”, if Google-sensei is any indication. C’mon, subbers! You’re American (most likely)! Can’t you put in the legwork (or the Google-fu) to discover what place in Nevada this is?!
Subbers make characters say “shit” a lot in this show, hmm? (contemplative)
Now this evil guy here *points to screen*…that’s hair I like.
Appare 8
I just love this OP…don’t you?
I like how the steam/gas boat/car has Chinese numerals on its dial.
Kosame means “small rain”, so “heavy rain” is obviously to contrast that.
The Hototo joke never gets old.
I thought I just saw someone leave the saloon…
Nice hair + terrible face = bad equation.
I can almost imagine the wee-oo-wee-oo-ooooooo…wah-wah-wahhh…(You know the one sound snippet, right? The one theme from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly - or whatever movie it is – that maybe involves a tumbleweed rolling across the screen, and then a huge shootout? If you don’t know it, play a sample on this Wikipedia page!) playing in the background.
It’s convenient the prarie dog didn’t appear when Hototo (old) had his revenge spree.
I noticed there’s a bit of a mark under Kosame’s left eye…it suggests that he’s been crying (or maybe it shows tiredness from the race…?), but it’s not that noticeable.
So that’s the real Gil…and tose were his henchmen that threatened to hang everyone bar Kosame. Got it.
(notes to self) So, for charting a course with Appare Ranman!, it’s Los Angeles -> Death Valley -> Ely -> Denver -> ??? -> New York. Got it.
Fugou Keiji 4
“Daisuke-sama” isn’t “Lord Daisuke”, it would be “Sir Daisuke”, I think…but “lord” has a proper translation in Japanese.
The truck has a Shinagawa licence plate. Anime really does like Shinagawa, huh? (Based on ID: INVADED and this.)
I think it’ll be interesting to see Kambe handle this without HEUSC.
The board for Sanchome (which is equivalent to a suburb…or a county, I guess?) has posters saying stuff like “take your dog poop home” and “let’s protect the environment!” (technically, it says “let’s protect the region/area!”, but that doesn’t translate right. There’s even a flea market. Still, those posters don’t have any big hints…not that I know of so far.
I kind of forgot that dude was the gardener for Kambe’s house…er, mansion.
I noticed a poster in the kouban says haru (spring) on it. That’s probably the same one that Haru’s name is signified by, assuming that’s not in combo with another character or few.
Oh great…the sister is an overbearing one.
Ahh…he doesn’t like natto. So that’s the problem. Daisuke is childish (like Appare)…Note I don’t like natto either, but I wouldn’t run away from home (or similar) because I was fed natto.
I noticed Kambe uses shinseki (which doesn’t refer to close family). “Relative” is a correct translation of that word, I just wanted to check that word was the right one for the context.
There’s a green tea bottle by the sink…I don’t think I’d mistake that shade of green for anything else.
LOL, I didn’t think we’d actually get to see Kambe with his hair “down”, so to speak. It’s…an interesting look, for sure.
Oh my gosh! It cost him (Haru) $15!!! (LOL, cheapskate…says the cheapskate…*suddenly droops and stops laughing*) Update: Sorry about the sudden downer there. I was having what the kids these days call a “woke moment”…at least, I think that’s how they use that term.
…I’d watch that crime drama. It’s funny.
Just realised Kato has an older model of phone than Kambe does.
This episode was kinda like a Tokyo Sonata kind of thing, huh? The sensational in the middle of the not-so-sensational…”sensational” for this show, anyway.
Those kids look like the ones from Erased.
*lightbulb goes off in brain* What if the dog went to Kambe’s…?
Can Suzue actually hear HEUSC while Kambe is using it…? $2.46 though…that is cheap, in comparison to the ham.
This was the cheapest episode so far (about $550)…probably because it was an insight into Kato’s life, more than Kambe’s.
Fugou Keiji 5
The flag seems to be based on Cameroon’s (which is in Africa, not America) and the “Arita Kinen” seems to refer to Arima Kinen, meaning this episode is set around Christmas-ish. Credit goes to Kambe Zaibatsu on this show.
I-It’s a Humvee!
Polyadoll (sic)…?
The Poliador guy speaks perfect Japanese…(?)
The star! It’s a key thingy!
I thought Kamei was the 1st Division dude with the reddish hair. Turns out it was the blonde…? Update: Redhead is Hoshino.
Ummmmmm…he was reading porn…? Uhhhhhhhhhhhhh…okayyyyyyyyyyyyy…
…oh, the costs for Kambe’s tuxedo are on there. So’s the cost for repairing the bike Suzue rode.
Fugou Keiji 6
I never knew there were so many money proverbs to be used as episode titles…
What is Kambe doing with his hands…? He’s not even using the computer.
Imura seems to use a Windows 10 with Cortana on the taskbar.
HGPC 20
What’s with all the Naruto running this episode…?
HGPC 21
(no notes, sorry!)
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billionairebabes · 9 months ago
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Trophy Wife Aesthetics for Black Women
“Hi! What do you think are the non-negotiables of being a trophy wife? Aesthetically. For black women. I think white women have a different level up journey.”
I was asked this question in a chat but I wrote so much information that I figured I should share my response with you all as well. I’ll try to make this as concise as possible. 
I’ll start by saying that aesthetically, Black women have to be more than cute. White women are considered beautiful just for being white, we don’t get that privilege, you know? However, being beautiful isn’t the end all be all. There are plenty of black trophy wives that aren’t naturally “beautiful” but they present well. Presentation is everything kind of like food. It may taste great but you may not even want to touch it if it’s presented poorly. 
Here are my personal non-negotiables: 
1. Keep your hair done. This doesn’t mean keep your hair in a weave or wig 24/7. You can be natural too. One of the more affluent men I dated actually preferred my natural hair over wigs. But make sure it’s well taken care of, always. Deep condition, moisturize, detangle etc. Use clips in if you need the extra volume. If you’re going to do weaves and wigs, make sure your closure is “undetectable”. Keep flyaways in order with an oil or mousse. Carry a brush and comb with everywhere to touch up every now and then but not in front of him if possible.
2. Your skin has to be pretty taken care of as well. If you’re his wife, you’re going to be waking up to him every morning. I don’t believe in waking up earlier than my man to put on light makeup and stuff. Men aren’t even worth that lol. But DO try to achieve great skin so that you still are pretty when you wake up. Doesn’t have to be perfect. Many people don’t have perfect skin. But make sure you’re washing, toning, moisturizing blah blah. I’m starting to follow the 10-step Korean skincare routine. It’s on my blog If you guys want to check it out. I’ve been investing a significant amount of time in learning what acids do what and how they can address my specific concerns. Good skin overall just makes you look wealthier too. So on “no-makeup” days, you can just do eyebrows, and lipgloss and mascara if you don’t have lash extensions and still look put together. Affluent men tend to enjoy outdoor activities, there will be times when you don’t wanna be in a full face but you can if you want to. The same goes for skin on the rest of your body as well. I shower about two times a day so I moisturize my body two times a day. To moisturize I use a mixture of oils, shea butter and regular lotion. I moisturize my hands every time I wash them too. Once or twice a week, I do a full-body exfoliation. I have a dry brush that I use and occasionally, I opt for a scrub instead. 
3. Take care of your teeth - Straight white teeth against melanated skin is >>>>. Plus it makes you look prettier, more put together, and of course, wealthier. Straightening teeth is expensive but a worthy investment. If you can’t straighten now, just whiten and take good care of your teeth in the meanwhile. Brush twice daily, floss daily, and whiten throughout the week. 
4. Keep your nails done. Can’t be too long or else we’re considered “ghetto” I usually go about medium length but a lot of blogs will suggest short. My man loved my medium length nails lol. I usually go for softer colors like baby pink, sometimes white. If I’m not able to go to the salon, I clean and file my nails down to an even length and paint them with a clear polish. It’s hard to make a mess of clear polish and my nails still look nice and shiny. I pop collagen pills to improve their strength because I naturally have weaker nails that break pretty easily. 
5. Wardrobe. Try to build a timeless wardrobe with a lot of basics you can build on and mix and match. For example, blazers are a staple for me. I wear them with jeans but I can mix them with trousers too. Then I have hella basic bodysuits I can wear with either combo. An easy trick for me is to buy a ton of neutrals. I’m not a big color person so it’s easy for me to shop this way. However, do not let my preferences deter you. Black women own color, if this is your style, go for it full throttle but be tasteful. I usually go more colorful on vacations. There are tons of articles out there on how to build a good wardrobe though. 
6. Stay in shape - I won’t say there’s a specific body type you need to have but take care of your body. I’m still working on working out consistently but because of skinny privilege I’ve been able to lack in that department and still be perceived as “fit”. Currently, I try to do flexibility stretching and exercise on Monday, Wednesday & Fridays. Stretch on weekends. If you get cosmetic surgery like a BBL, breast job etc. make sure it’s fitting for your frame. 
7. Lastly, this doesn’t apply to aesthetics but I feel as though black women have to DO SOMETHING to be snatched up as trophy wives. We don’t get pulled into that position just for being pretty as often as white woman do. For example, Alexis O. Of Reddit wifed Serena Williams who is the best tennis player in the world. Not some random girl he thought was cute. Prince Harry wifed Megan Markle who was not only a successful actress but also had an outstanding educational background to match. Janet Jackson married billionaire businessman, Wissam Al Mana. Now of course, many of us aren’t that successful yet but hopefully you get the point. Men in positions of higher status want to know that you can fit into his lifestyle and don’t have beans for brains. Having something going for yourself also gives him something to invest in. Men like to feel needed or helpful but not used. 
Additionally, owning a business or working in corporate greater increases your chances of mingling with men in positions to make you a trophy wife. There’s a reason why college sugar babies are so successful but for women past that stage, have a career, have a small business. Do SOMETHING. It also creates a safety net for you as well. Men can be unpredictable and can do horrible things. I read an article once about a man who hid his entire fortune in offshore shell companies when him and his wife were divorcing so that she wouldn’t be able to get anything. It took her lawyer literal years to untangle that web of shell accounts he spun. Running your own business or even having a solid set of skills saves you in the event of the worst of the worst. Your life shouldn’t crumble to pieces if this man decides to divorce you. Same goes for even being the spoiled girlfriend of a wealthy man. Having a wealthy boyfriend or husband is one thing, knowing how to use him as a resource is another. Girls who truly win at this game walk away from these relationships with more than a few handbags and a baby. 
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Good Luck Ladies! 🥂
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