Friday, October 31, 2008

Office Politics

There are many things that I loathe about the New Kid (I have even started to keep a list of things that irk me so that I can share them here with you all).

They include:

1. The way he plays "I Kissed a Girl" on repeat and even though he has on earphones I can hear it blasting through my little cubicle walls.
2. The way he sings along to "I Kissed a Girl" on repeat all day long.
3. The way he taps his foot along to "I Kissed a Girl" on repeat all day long.

I mean, I love Katy Perry ("Hot 'N Cold" is my new fave song) but the New Kid's love of Katy Perry is out of control. But of all the things that the New Kid does to annoy me, the biggest one of all is his love of talking about political agendas at work.

Let me set the scene. It is a rainy Tuesday morning about a month ago. I am soaking wet and not a happy camper because I left my rain boots under my desk...about a year ago...and never remember to bring them home. I'm cold, cranky, and I want to be snuggled in my covers watching Sex and the City movie for the 5th time since I bought it for $9.99 at Blockbuster this weekend. Instead, I step into a whirlwind of politics.

He and a few of the other online marketing team are discussing Sarah Palin and how she actually sounded like she knew how to put two sentences together at a debate she was at the night before. Which I responded to with a guffaw. Yes, a guffaw. I'm not going to repeat the whole conversation that was had here because it was heated. And mainly it was heated because what the New Kid is incapable of is listening to other opinions. He loves to insert himself into conversations and then take them over. And he lurves to talk over people. Making it impossible to get a word in edge wise. And he has to be right. All the freaking time. The funny thing is? We both are voting for Obama. But the New Kid brings out the bitch in me. I can't help but fight him on anything and everything.

So since then I have refrained from talking politics at work. Because really some subjects just shouldn't be talked about with people you need to have good relationships with in the future (and who you already want to strangle on a daily basis).

Then yesterday, I came to work and the New Kid had put up a huge "Vote Obama/Biden" campaign poster in his cubicle. I'm talking ginormous. He was immediately told to take it down because our office does not condone politicking in the work space.

Apparently it is distracting and takes away from the day-to-day tasks that we need to get done. Of course, this reason only made the New Kid angry so he busted out some Obama pins and stuck those to his cubicle. Which were quickly OK'ed because The Boss was wearing an identical one.

But it hit me that I had once agreed with the New Kid. While I did think it was excessive that he had a ginormous campaign poster in his cubicle, a few buttons urging people to vote isn't hurting the office. As long as the New Kid keeps his trap shut about his own political agenda, I think we can continue to agree that while campaigning for a certain candidate might not be work-friendly, urging your fellow employees to get out there and vote for the future of our country is noble.

And it made me like the New Kid for a hot sec. Until he started singing "I Kissed a Girl" again.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Ask Working Girl

Have a work-related question? Blog-related question? Or want to know something random about one of us? Ask! Send your questions to or or just post a comment here. Now, onto this week's questions...

Diane asked: Why is it so hard to find office supplies in the office? Do they really think they are going to save money by not giving me a notebook?

WG1 answered: We have a designated office supply orderer and lately he hasn't been letting anyone order the supplies they want. They all must be Office Depot brand and we can't even get tissues. I hate it. So, I go to an office supply store, purchase what I want and expense it. No questions asked.


Mary de Bastos asked: How can you afford to live in the city on assistant salaries? How much is an assistant salary?

WG1 answered: Let me answer your second question first and before I do, let me point out that this is solely based on an informal survey of my friends who all happen to work in publishing in Manhattan. On average, sales assistants make $30,000 - $37,000 a year. Some get overtime and others get three weeks vacation a year. It all depends. Either way, it's a tough salary to live in Manhattan on. Which is why WG2 and I started our post-college lives in Hoboken, NJ and why a number of our friends are living at home to save money.

For those of us living in the city (and in Hoboken because it's only a teensy bit cheaper), we get by paycheck to paycheck. Everything from tampons to rent is expensive in New York City. I try my best to save some money after paying all my bills but I also like to shop, dine out and go out with my friends. So it's really a crap shoot because one week you have extra money to shop and the next your rent is due (and cable, and electric, and your credit card bill).


Mich (from Canada, where everyone takes their shoes off at the door) asked: I always see people on TV and in movies wearing their shoes in the house (on American shows). Is it true or is it just on TV?

WG1 answered: I always take my shoes off when I get home. But growing up in Minnesota, I was trained well to take of my shoes in the mud room. My boyfriend, who is from Massachusetts, keeps his shoes on and doesn't know what a mud room is. Does that help?


WG1's Mom asked: Are you still hungover, sweetie?

WG1 answered: No.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I Think I'm Still Drunk

I have a bit of a reputation for getting inappropriately drunk with coworkers. It may be the awkwardness of small talk with the higher-ups or that I'm not paying for the booze but either way, I've gotten too drunk one too many times. More often than not, someone else is just a drunk so it's not just me. But Saturday night, it was a different story.

In typical WG1 fashion, I proceeded to drink a little too much in celebration of our biggest event of they year being complete. Our event rocked and I rocked, my female boss told me that she couldn't have done the event without me and that 30 people told her how great of a job I did, so I was in quiet the celebratory mood. I had two rum and diets at dinner with my bosses and coworkers in the marketing department.

Then, the night got interesting.

One of our higher-ups is married with two little munchkins and doesn't get out much. We'll call him Michael Scott because, well, he kind of is like Michael School. When there are group business trips, he takes advantage and goes all out. Limos to a club, bottle service and champagne at the club and craziness all around. After waking up at 5:30AM and working on my feet all day, I said to myself that I would only go out for another drink or two. Well a drink or two turned into several. I was dancing on chairs, pretending I was the bartender with our table's bottle of vodka and singing my little heart out.

The club closed at 2AM, which was already much later than when I usually end my nights in the city. The group that was left which was just Michael Scott and a slew of assistants, we all hopped into the limo and were on our way back to the hotel. Or so I thought.

I thought wrong. We were on our way to an after hours club. I decided to go into little miss event planner mode and sat in the front of the limo with our driver. We drove and drove and drove around the northern California city and couldn't find the club. Why? Because it was hidden. It was like a speakeasy. Being with a group of other assistants made this whole experience less inappropriate but we were still Michael Scott. Once we finally found this after hours place, which in my memory was just like a rave but let's keep in mind that I was entering a blackout, Michael Scott had to fork over all of his cash to get the four guys that were with us into the place. Little miss party planner (me) proceeded to withdraw $120 out of my personal checking account and handed it to him to buy drinks.

At one point, he was holding my shoes while I danced and dancing with myself and other female coworkers to keep sketchy men away from us. Again, I was near blackout so this could all be in my head. At the end of the night, the limo dropped myself on one of my coworkers off at the hotel and everyone else started walking to Denny's. When the limo driver asked me who's room the limo should be charged to, I yelled "charge it to Michael Scott!" It was now 4:30 in the morning.

The next thing I remember is the phone ringing in my hotel room at 8:00AM. I had to be down in the lobby at 9:00AM to get to the airport. Needless to say, Sunday was a long day that included sitting with my head between my legs, alcohol seeping out my pours, vomiting in the airport and all sorts of awkwardness in front of my male boss.

But wait, the story doesn't end there. First thing on Monday morning, Michael Scott calls me into his office. "I think I owe you $120," he said to me and I awkwardly laughed. He then said, "you made me well aware that this was a lot of money for you to be taking out of your account." Uh, awkward.

We then sat in his office for about 15 minutes and had a true college-style recap of the night. He told me that he thought I was going to get arrested. To which I replied with a blank stare and then a "what? When?"

"When you were talking to the cop about where the limo was parked," he said jogging my memory a bit. I remembered talking to a cop and informing him that we were from an important magazine because in the state I was in, that was important. I remember arriving back at the hotel and seeing other coworkers getting in their cars to go to the airport. Bits and pieces of the night began to finally come together but every one of my actions is not accounted for and god only knows what else I said to Michael Scott or anyone else for that matter.

Monday, October 27, 2008

That's One Demerit For You, Young Lady

I am no stranger to getting into trouble...though I have to admit that this trouble I speak of isn't the kind that led to any arrests, jail time or even a grounding from the 'rents. 

The trouble I'm talking about is detention. Man, oh man, was I a rebel in high school. In particular, I loved not tucking in my shirt, wearing my skirt just a little too short, and my favorite indiscretion was being late (specifically to French class).

I went to a small, Catholic, and all girls (yes a trifecta if you will) in the suburbs of Chicago. And each time you made a boo-boo (aka not making it from one end of the school to the other in under five minutes) you got a demerit. And 3 demerits equaled one detention. 

At work last Friday when I stepped onto my floor at work, I felt like I had done a time warp. There in the front lobby were The Boss and our HR/legal counsel waiting for each employee to take their steps off the elevator. With notebooks and pens poised, they were taking attendance. Flash back to five years earlier and I felt like I was running down the corridors of my high school after a long, long (maybe too long) lunch standing in front of my French teacher as she marked me late in her date book.  

Luckily, I was ten minutes early and instead of getting a demerit, I got a gold star. Literally, The Boss came over to my desk later that morning and starting complaining about everyone's attendance of late. Then told me how proud of me she was for being on time. "A gold star for you WG2," The Boss said. 

Um...thanks. But really? Really? My work place is starting to take attendance? Really? That can't be normal. 

Of course everyone in my office starting freaking out, bitching, and all around complaining. We were all told that if we were going to be late to work that we should text or e-mail our direct managers to let them know we would be late. And to make sure that if we were sick, took a personal day, or if we were on vacation to mark it on the Company Calendar so everyone would know you were going to be out. 

And around 5:30 p.m., our HR rep took a spot back in the lobby and checked off anyone who left early...may I remind everyone that it was Friday. Sitting at your desk until 6 o'clock on the dot on a Friday is painful. More painful than say writing, "I will not be late 150 times" on the white board in the conference room.

So I'm exaggerating a little. But really?! Attendance? Really?!  

Friday, October 24, 2008

Meeting Notes

Meeting Notes is a weekly feature. Here we will dish on tidbits, news, and important things we think you Working Girls should know. So scroll down to hear what we think you should glean from this work week.
  • We have to thank reader Tatum for this one (since she was kind enough to mail us a few copies), but I have a new obsession and it is the magazine Eliza. This new magazine is very Working Girl-esque. Interviews with Working Girl idols like Live's Nicole Lapin and Jen Egan, a casting director of shows like Project Runway. Easy to do recipes (like roasted pumpkin soup!), crafts to do to take your mind off a long day at work, and the article on great female authors. Love, love, love. I am sold. 

  • Speaking of Project Runway, we'd like to give a big Working Girl 'congratulations!' to the three finalists from this season's show! 3 women! Woohoo! And I would love to own one of Leanne's wave inspired skirts so here's to hoping she designs a line for Target. Congratulations Leanne! 

  • Still in the need for a costume this Halloween? Need said costume to be kosher for work (aka zero cleavage and a lot less leg than that sexy nurse costume you bought for later?). Have no fear! American Apparel is here! The somewhat cheap store known for its clothing staples has a whole portion of their site devoted to DIY costumes with minimal work. I can't wait to show off my tennis player outfit next Friday (although I think I'm going to forgo showing it off at the work place).
  • Freaking out about our growing problems with the economy? Hop on over to the NY Times article on how to quell your fear of losing all your money and living on the streets. I might have exaggerated a tiny bit there on the exact subject line. 
  • Getting excited for Whitney Port's spin-off show "The City"? We are too. So excited that we've included the sneak peek trailer in this week's Meeting Notes. Most early reviews are saying 'boring', but we love Whitney and a break from Speidi sounds awesome to us. 

Thursday, October 23, 2008

We Were Nominated!

With the 2008 Elections around the corner, we are all racing to figure out who to vote for. McCain? Obama? So much research to do, so many platforms to read up on, so many SNL skits to watch!

Well, when you want a break from thinking about who you want to the future of America to be in the hands of, mosey on over to the Blogger's Choice '09 Awards and vote Working Girl as "Best Blog of All Time"! Yes, we were nominated! 

We think this one is an easy choice. But then again, we might be a teensy bit bias. 

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Save Second Base

I work at a health-obsessed company (which I actually think is funny since I'm more of a hamburger and a beer kinda girl than granola and water kinda girl). I think the best example of this health obsession was our company-wide Biggest Loser contest that we had last winter (that I am still bitter that I lost). 

So since our company loves wellness as a whole, they like to put on lectures and seminars from time to time to educate their employees about health-related issues. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, our company had a local radiologist and medical director of a women's center come to speak to our female (and some male) employees about the preventive measures women can take to avoid getting breast cancer. 

It was a very informative meeting (and I got free lunch!) where I learned some important stats that I would like to share with you: 
  • About 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. 
  • Self breast exams should be conducted monthly. The best time to do a self-breast exam is at the end of your period. 
  • Besides lumps look for skin irritation or dimpling, any nipple discharge other than breast milk, redness or scaliness. These are indicators that you could have breast cancer. Get it checked. You can never be too sure!
  • If you have a history of breast cancer in your family (direct relatives only such as sister or mother), you should start getting digital mammograms 5 years before your mother or sister was diagnosed. For example if your sister got breast cancer at age 25, you should start getting mammograms at age 20.

One of our readers sent us a link earlier in the month to a website called Save Second Base. The term was developed back in 2005 by Kelly Rooney, a mother of 5 with breast cancer. When she passed, Rooney's sister and best friend started selling "Save Second Base" t-shirts, fleece blankets, and sweatshirts - a phrase coined by Rooney herself. The clothing line is fun, sassy, and brings a little bit of humor to a serious subject. 

As the women of Save Second Base say though, "Breast cancer is no laughing matter, but we can fight it with humor!" I urge all our readers to peruse their online store and support this wonderful cause. 

And don't forget to regularly check yourself for breast cancer! We can fight this disease with knowledge! 

Monday, October 20, 2008

So Long, Farewell

Don't get too excited about my blog post title, I did not snag a job in Chicago and saying 'farewell' to my current job. Which means I'm going to be blogging from NYC for a little while yet while some of my recent opportunities play out.

My post title is in reference to the fact that one of my best work friends got a new job today. Her official last day will be Halloween. And I could not be more bummed.

I should probably back up a little, because I don't really talk a lot about my work friends. I do talk about my work bff/gay husband, but besides him I do hang out with a little group of people, a clique if you will. There are four of us and we go to lunch every day together, call each other incessantly, send each other inapproriate e-mails, and in general are good work friends.

We each work in different departments, love to complain about our company, our benefits, how much we don't get paid, hot office gossip, and of course things like girlfriends or boyfriends or annoying roommate situations.

Of all three of my work friends, Small Fry is my best friend at work. She used to work in my department as the Marketing Manager and at first we really didn't get along. In fact, I hated her. And I'm pretty sure she thought I was an idiot. In fact, she confirmed this a few months ago when she brought up an old Excel sheet I did when I first started at my job that was sub-par. She gave me two months until I quit. In my defense, I think I might have still been drunk from Senior Week festitivies because I had graduated three days before. My voicemail message that I recorded on my first day sounds like I swallowed marbles because I barely had a voice. Well jokes on her, because I'm still here.

Anyway, after Small Fry and I worked on a huge event together almost a year ago (read: we worked long, long hours together), we became bff. I introduced her to Forever 21, she made me obsessed with $5 foot-longs at Subway. We have inside jokes. She tells me secrets before she tells her best friends and I tell her things that I never thought I would share with a co-worker. I can truthfully say that she and I have gone beyond the work friends barrier.

Small Fry is one of my best friends and not just at work. I will miss her more than I can say - because the one great thing about my job is the people. I like coming to work and knowing that if I need to bitch about The Boss that Small Fry will be there to listen to me. Or knowing that if I want skip that horrible looking Lean Cuisine I brought for lunch that someone will go and grab Hale & Hearty with me.

So today I am just sad.

And tomorrow I will start planning a kick-ass going away party for her.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Digital Boy

There is this guy in Digital that I talk to almost everyday. I have to work with him on all of my digital marketing related projects, which is basically everything I do. He's one of those dorky guys who acts causal and jokes with you the day you meet him. For example he calls me "Working Girl One-ski" or by my last name. He writes lots of smileys in his emails and tells me that if I get a project to him on-time, we can be best friends. At first I thought he was creepy but I decided to just go with it. However, since I started working with him, I've always gotten this vibe that he's flirting with me. No big deal, some people are just always flirting.

Today, Digital Boy made a surprise visit to my floor. He called my extension from the lobby, "Hey WG1, It's Digital Boy"

"Are you stalking me? Do you really need the Project materials that bad?" I asked him.

"Haha, no. Are you busy?" He asked.

Of course I'm busy! Our biggest event of the year is next week and I haven't left the office before 7:30PM all week!!! "Uh, a little. Why?" I said.

"Oh nothing, just wanted to see how Project works? What's the hold up?" I should point out that Project materials were due to Digital Boy on Monday. Typically I get emails saying "Where is Project? I guess you hate me and we can be friends anymore." Today, I got a visitor. I should also point out that Digital Boy already knows the answers to these questions (Advertisers send materials, we design the project and send for their approval. The hold up is that they take forever to approve it. It's the same story every month).

"Uh, ok. I'll come let you in." I let Digital Boy onto the floor and he waltzes in and starts walking to my desk. Uh, ok?

We got to my desk and I teach Digital Boy Project 101. He makes weird jokes and small talk and all the while I feel like hes "office flirting" with me. My coworkers (who also work with him, think he's a little creepy and I've told that I get the flirting vibe from him) are at their desks, turning around and laughing to themselves. I get awkward very easily. I can feel myself turning red in embarrassment because my coworkers are laughing and I start to sweat. Then, I think "oh god, I hope he doesn't notice my blushing and think I like him!"

He asks me about a picture of a woman that I have on my desk and asks if it's a friend. Turns out it was an invite for an event. Damnit, I think, I should have said it was my girlfriend. I then realize that I don't have a single picture of my boyfriend on my desk. I'm note a horrible girlfriend, I did have a picture up but everyone kept asking if he was my brother. That's almost as awkward as this Digital Boy situation. Perhaps Digital Boy noticed that IM on the corner of my screen between Boyfriend and I. Boyfriend said, "I have to go, I love you!" I said, "I LOVE YOU TOO!"

More Project 101 and more awkward conversation about Project. Digital Boy leaves, finally, and he's barely 5 feet away before I IM a coworker and then start laughing out loud.

"What was he doing here!?!?!" she turned around and asked. I shrugged. "He likes you!!!!" My look of disgust summed up my feelings for him. However, we were more intrigued by him than ever before now. So we did what any tech-savvy Working Girl would do: we Googled him. His Linkedin profile was one of the first hits. No Facebook, which surprised me because my guess was that Digital Boy is in his early to mid-20's, like me.

Clicked the Linkedin link. Scrolled down to find his college graduation and determine his age. Digital Boy graduated COLLEGE in 1995. He. Is. Thirty. Five. Years. Old. 35!

Now, I do not think 35 is old at all. But I thought he was my age, 23. He looked young and ok his hairline is receding a little but so is my younger brother's. He acts like guys my age too.

It was just the most bizarre and awkward encounter ever.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Answers From the Corner Cubicle

Thank you everyone for your questions!

When WG1 and I decided to start this bi-weekly Q&A sesh we figured that we would split the questions and write the post together. But things happen and WG1 is still stuck at the office and dealing with a Project Manager from hell so I'm going to answer some of the questions you asked us last week and we will follow up with the other answers in our next feature. Our apologies if your question doesn't get answered. If you need advice ASAP, you can always e-mail us at or

Without further adieu, here are my non-expert opinions and answers to your burning questions.

Elizabeth asked: The drama queen of my office recently decided that we should be BFF. She's a nice person and all, but I have enough friends and not much time, thank you very much. Well, I recently found out that she's been helping herself to the snacks I have stashed in my desk when I'm not in the office. I immediately got a set of keys to all my drawers and cabinets, so at least that problem is solved. But we haven't spoken since this incident several weeks ago. Have either of you experienced a similar invasion of privacy, or unwelcomed friendship advances?

WG2 answered: Welcome to my life Elizabeth! In some of my most recent posts I've been telling you all about the New Kid. He is the definition of "that guy". Whenever I'm engaged in a conversation with a co-worker, he has to put in his two cents. He invites himself to lunch with me and my work friends. And he has tried unsuccessfully to get the two of us to have inside jokes together. I can tell you now that if he even attempted to eat my food I would probably bite him (and subsequently be fired).

My best advice in this sticky situation is to play the "I'm busy" card. I mean, it's a great excuse because well, you're at work! Duh! Of course you're busy. When the New Kid engages me in a conversation that makes me want to slap him I just interject with a, "Hey, if I don' finish this Excel sheet by two today The Boss will kill me". This approach has worked pretty well with me so far.

As for the snacks issue, my approach has always to tackle these matters with honesty but in a way that is not entirely confrontational and could affect your friendship (should you decide someday that this drama queen could be your new bff). Letting someone know your quirks and oddities is a great way to make them stop doing the things that irritate you. Saying, "Hey, I know this is really bizarre but I have hated sharing my food since I was in diapers, and I know it's weird and so not co-worker friendly but to avoid the wrath of the preschooler in me you should keep your hands out of my drawers." (That's what she said).


howitstarts asks: Do you have any recommendations for finding a job in a different city? I know WG2 is going through this right now and I'd love some tips because I'm having a hard time knowing where to look. I'm an assistant right now and would probably be looking at doing more assistant/office worker type stuff.

WG2 answers: I am indeed trying to find a job in a different city and let me tell you it is not easy. My greatest piece of advice is perseverance and patience. Every day after work, I go home and search and search for any jobs in marketing, publishing, or editing and apply for them. I stalk,, Craig's List, Simply Hired, Indeed, MediaBistro, ed2010, and SoloGig. I would say I apply for at least 20 jobs a day, maybe less if it's a slow day.

Also, when I send out my resume or an e-mail I like to preface in my opening paragraph that while I am currently living in NYC, that I am in the process of moving to Chicago. They don't need to know details right away. So even if you aren't moving at this very minute, employers might be more inclined to call you for an interview if they know you aren't looking for relocation money and that a move is on the horizon (because employers want people to start ASAP most of the time).

If you are specifically looking for an assistant job, it might be a good idea to look into joining a few temp agencies. A lot of agencies do a temp-to-hire position which technically means that you are working for the temp agency who then loans you out to a company for a trail period. Then if you like the company and the company likes you back, they can offer you a job and salary after a certain amount of months. This is a good solution if you are looking to move immediately and need something more short-term while you search for the job of your dreams.


Kerry asks: What lessons or skills did you learn in college that helped you most in the workplace?

WG2 answers: It's funny that this was one of our questions because WG1 and I were just having a conversation a few weeks ago about what our favorite classes were in college. And like the nerd I am, I listed my top 5 and WG1 laughed in my face (except this was an online convo so really she just did typed "haha, you're a nerd" and we moved on).

Anyway, I would have to say that the best set of skills I learned in college would be my management skills. While in college, I worked on the school newspaper where I also had the honor of being the News Editor my senior year. At this position I had little lackies that I had the fun task of directing these minions (and I wish I could put quotes around all these management words because it wasn't as severely structured as this sounds). Anyway, being the "boss" in a way and learning how to give direction and encouragement was difficult but I think it was something I gleaned from that whole experience.

This past summer, I was given my first real intern. Real in the sense that she was completely under my guidance and instruction. When it was time for my intern to go back to college in August, the VP of Marketing gave me the biggest compliment when she said that she saw growth in our intern when she was under my wing. That even though this girl and I were practically the same age, I still acted like her boss while still managing to be her friend. I realized that I had picked up that skill because of my role on our college newspaper so I will always be thankful to that college experience for helping me grow as a student and eventually as an employee.

Tatum asks: Heard back from Chicago yet? Dying to know the outcome of your trip!

WG2 answers: Updates, updates, updates. Well, first of all I have to announce that I did not get the job in the suburbs that I was dying to get. I got an e-mail from them this week thanking me for flying out, but they had decided to keep interviewing and wished me a "long career". Yea, I thought that was odd too. I have since gotten over it. I mean, it would have been a great job but the location wasn't perfect and it wasn't exactly what I wanted to be doing with my life so my search continues.

Some other opportunities have recently popped up so hopefully one of those will work because I would love to be back in Chicago in time for the holidays. But I also have other plans worked out if this whole Chicago idea needs to be put on the back burner. With the economy the way it is, it might not be the best time to be scuttling from job to job. So we will see where these opportunities take me. Only time will tell. Wow, that paragraph is so full of ambiguity!


Again, thank you to everyone for your questions and look out for WG1's answers which will come in the next few weeks!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Surviving The Great Depression of 2008

Times are getting tough for everyone with the financial crisis. Working Girls and Boys are cutting back on food, clothes and entertainment. But a girls gotta eat, look nice at work and after a long hard day, a girl needs a drink. Here are a few tips to survive the financial crisis without becoming a hungry, poorly dressed hermit.

Movies in Manhattan are $12. Add popcorn and a soda and that's at least $20. Per person! One cocktail costs anywhere from $10 - $15. Other cities are cheaper but still more expensive than we Working Girls would like. Drinking with friends at your apartment is a great savvy choice for having fun and saving money. Some of my favorite moments with my friends are around a table, drinking wine and playing cards. Easy. Cheap. Fun.

Or, just do the college thing when going out. Get your drink on at home then go to the bar and nurse a fun cocktail. And if we're going to get all college here, I'll have a Vodka 180.

Eat less! Just kidding.

My mother has been clipping coupons for as long as I can remember. I tried using coupons at one point in college but I ended up purchasing items I never ate or didn't even like and therefore, didn't save any money. Now that I (a) moved to the city where I pay an absurd amount of money on groceries and (b) am penny pitching out of fear of a great depression, I'm back to clipping coupons. In addition to finding coupons in the Sunday paper, try visiting your favorite food brands websites for coupons or special offers. also has a number of savings on brand name grocery items.

I recently checked my online banking to see how much money I spent a week at my work cafeteria. I found that I was spending $45 to $60 a week on breakfast and lunch. That's a new shirt or a weeks worth of groceries (if I have a lot of coupons). Last week, I brought breakfast everyday and lunch four times. It's not as glamorous as purchasing sushi from the cafeteria but I'd rather save the money for dinner with friends.

Speaking of dinner with friends, that's not so cheap either. For me, that's due to alcohol. A month or so ago, two girlfriends and I opted for a quaint French BYOB in the West Village. The food at Tartine was reasonably priced and because we brought our own wine three of us had dinner (with an appetizer), dessert and two bottles of wine for about $80. Which is almost unheard of for a nice meal in Manhattan.

My working wardrobe is in dire need of a makeover. I have one pair of pants to get me through the fall of winter and I'm already wearing them once a week. In a prefect world, I had own enough dresses to wear one everyday and only have a repeat or two each month. But in a prefect world there probably wouldn't be a financial crisis to begin with.

You already know how much WG2 and I love bargain shopping at places like Target and H&M. It's time to add a few more stores to our go-to list:

UNIQLO is the Japanese hybrid of American Apparel and H&M. With lots of basics (in lots of colors and styles), sweaters, jeans, dresses and a few fun pieces at reasonable prices I think I might just start making the trip from The Upper East Side to SoHo a little more often.

TopShop is what my friends in the UK swore by when they studied abroad and stuck using the Euro or the Pound. Prices have gone up over the past few years but it's still cheaper than designer duds. TopShop is coming stateside something this fall with a store opening in SoHo. The opening has been postponed but you can get your fix now that items can be purchased at US prices online.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Burnt To a Crisp

I feel like this is a complete and total cop-out post so I completely and totally apologize in advance. I am, unfortunately, burnt out. Despite my lovely and relaxing weekend at the shore (thanks Andrea!), I am still tired and at a loss of something substantial to write about so instead of my usual wit and humor I am going to regale you all with a short update on my working life. 

1) I am burnt out because my company has a big event coming up tomorrow which means I've been coming in early and leaving late. I even stayed late on Friday to finish printing name tags. I know yuck yuck yuck. Thankfully it will all be over tomorrow and I can go on to plan our next event in November without putting in the long hours. 

2) The New Kid is still killing me. After all your comments on how I should give him a chance I thought, "Ok, maybe I am being too harsh on this guy." It's been two weeks and let me tell you, he has not let up. My biggest pet peeve of the New Kid's is how he loses e-mails. I have sent him numerous e-mails and he somehow can't locate them when I ask to see his work re. that e-mail I sent two hours ago. Oh, and he loves to invite himself to lunch with me and my work friends. Not okay. 

3) My new roommate Natalie is still doing her boss. 'Nuff said. 

4) I still have not heard a word from my Chicago interviews which is highly, highly frustrating and nerve-racking. Unfortunately the economy is not helping my search for the perfect job in the city I yearn to be in. On the bright side Thanksgiving is right around the corner so I am going to get to plan a trip home soon (woohoo!). 

5) I am currently watching One Tree Hill and I just noticed how many work-related topics are in this show! But seriously their professions are so far-fetched. Brooke owns her own clothing line (well not really anymore), Lucas is a writer, and Peyton is starting her own record label. I don't know about you guys but I don't have any recent grad friends who own their own businesses or are making anything close to a number that would let them buy their own houses. Do you think Brooke would hire me? I'm a really super assistant. 

Again sorry for this cop-out post. I promise to bring my normal blogging back on Wednesday once this event is finito. 

Friday, October 10, 2008

Meeting Notes

Meeting Notes is a weekly feature. Here we will dish on tidbits, news, and important things we think you Working Girls should know. So scroll down to hear what we think you should glean from this work week.

  • We've all been there. One too many drinks at happy hour after work leads to late night e-mail sessions (it seemed like a good idea at the time?). Well, fear no longer. Google "Mail Goggles" may prevent you from e-mailing, "We kick marketing ass!" to your boss when you are a teeny bit inebriated (ok, that might have happened tonight whoops!). This new feature on Gmail requires you to solve a few simple math problems before it allows you to e-mail anyone. Can't add 2+2? Then you probably shouldn't hit send until morning. Ah, I feel safer from myself already.

    • Adding to my already building fear of the economy failing and therefore me living in a cardboard box in Central Park a la the Great Depression, CosmoGirl of Hearst Magazines has decided to fold the magazine and consolidate their subscriber database into the largest-selling teen magazine on newsstands, Seventeen. I, for one, am bummed beyond belief. As WG1 said tonight as we sipped champagne at Flute, "ComsoGirl was for teens as Marie Claire is for young women".

    • Our hatred for Bluefly is apparent...until the next giveaway begins. This month try to win a whole new wardrobe in Bluefly's Fright or Fashion contest.

    • We spotted this new mag, Success for Women, on newsstands last weekend and we picked up a copy. Although it's def. not geared towards the 20 something's, we still loved the articles on Maria Shriver's The Women's Conference or Suze Orman's article on how to live rich. And we might just subscribe. Too bad we can't expense this one to the company.

    Thursday, October 9, 2008

    To Wash or Not To Wash

    It has been approximately 25-days since I last did laundry (this includes dry cleaning). I've run out of underwear and had to buy some from Gap Body. More importantly, I've run out of decent clothing to wear to work.

    Today, I wore a dress that I'm pretty sure I wore a week and a half ago but wore a sweater over it so that it looked like a skirt. Tomorrow is Friday so I'm allowed to wear jeans and all of my nice jeans are dirrty. Yes, dirrty with two r's, like Christina Aguilera's "Stripped." They are that dirty.

    While WG2 now has a washer/dryer in her apartment, I do not. When we lived together the laundromat was directly across the street from our apartment. I could quickly drop off my laundry right before closing on a weekday evening and pick it up again the next day right before close.

    Now, I have to schedule appointments to have it picked up and dropped off. Pick-ups cannot be scheduled later than 7:15, which barely gives me time to separate my whites and darks and put my pretty little undies in my pretty little undie washing bag. This means that two days in a row I have to leave work with enough time to go home, sort my laundry, write out instructions and get it picked up. Completing this task the night before would just be too easy. Getting out of work early is just too hard.

    Next Thursday, I'll be heading to my dad's house in suburia (you may remember my adventures there). I'd love to wait until then and bring my laundry home but I barely have clothes for the weekend let alone next week at work. Think I can make it or not?

    And, yes, I did purchase enough underwear to get me to next Thursday.

    Wednesday, October 8, 2008

    Happy Hump Day!

    I have to confess that while I was in college when people would greet me with a "happy hump day" (or if they were really cool put it in their away messages) that I really thought it meant humping as in man-humping. Then I graduated, and I finally came to the realization that "hump day" wasn't referring to lewd conduct but rather talking about Wednesday which is the hump of the weekday. 

    Sometimes, I can be pretty thick. I admit that this was one of those times. 

    Since then I have finally figured out what "Hump Day" actually means, and it has become something of an inside joke between me and my work friends. Each week, we send each other knee-slapping, laugh out loud e-mails in honor of "Hump Day." 

    Last Wednesday, I opened my mailbox at the end of the day to this image of turtles humping...literally. 

    My co-worker Beth had sent it around the younger employees of my company. I had a good chuckle over it but apparently kept the e-mail open a little too long because one of our VP's walked by my desk just as I was closing the e-mail and cooed, "Oh! Look at the turtles! So cute!" I instantly got awkward and muttered, "Yea, cute" under my breath and then turned back to my desk just as she said, "Wait can you open that again? They are just too cute!"

    Gulp. Wasn't expecting that! So I opened up the e-mail with the VP still cooing over how cute turtles are and how she is thinking about buying her daughter one, and that is when she realized they were in fact cute turtles who just happened to be humping. 

    "Oh! Oh my! WG2! You're too young to see stuff like that!" she yelled while shielding her eyes. 

    Luckily this particular VP is pretty cool and someone that me and the other younger co-workers can easily joke around with. So I knew that the image of two turtles humping wouldn't send her running, but what made me laugh was that the first reaction to come out of her mouth was 'you're too young!'. 

    It's officially been a week since the VP and I had the awkward turtle humping encounter, but she has somehow managed to bring it up in every single conversation she has had with me since (and also managed to tell the rest of the office about our awkward moment). 

    Which means I have become that co-worker who likes turtle porn. What a great legacy to leave behind. 

    Ask Working Girl

    As we mentioned in our last Meeting Notes, we are going to be starting a new feature on our blog. A bi-weekly Q&A feature!

    Yep, you can ask us anything. Got a question about our blog? Something work-related? We have answers!

    Send in your questions to or! Or leave us a question in the comments section of this post.

    Ask away!

    Tuesday, October 7, 2008

    It's About Time I Got Rid of that Ass

    Hi, I'm Working Girl One and I am no longer an assistant.

    I was, for a what felt like forever, a sales assistant. Then, I switched departments and became a marketing assistant. For the last month or so, I've been a little drained about my job. My work load gradually increased week after week and I was certainly doing more than assistant work. Pretty much from day one, I have been doing coordinator work. And now I am finally the marketing coordinator.

    Three weeks ago my bosses informed me that they were changing my title from marketing assistant to marketing coordinator. However, my title was the only thing changing. My salary would stay exactly the same. While I understand that a change to a higher level title is a great thing for a Working Girl, it looks great on a resume, I knew that I deserved more than I was making.

    I wanted to ask for more money, something I've done before, but I wasn't sure how to position myself in this situation. How much to ask for? What to say? Thankfully, I was spared the awkward asking for a raise conversation. A week ago my bosses informed me that they would announce my title change this week and I would also be getting a raise!

    Today my promotion was announced and there were congratulations all around. While my work load isn't changing (it's already busting at the seams), this promotion is just what I needed to get excited about work again and give me that extra push to be a stellar Working Girl.

    Monday, October 6, 2008

    Working Girl Wardrobe: Fall Favorites

    It is October and it has just begun to feel like fall in NYC. I have been particularly giddy about the change in weather patterns because I get to wear my new fall coat that I picked up at The Gap on sale a few weeks back. It's grey and oh so gorgeous and makes me a feel like a Working Girl who could defeat the world (all good coats should make you feel that way).

    Fall means that I can hide my bumps with big sweaters, long pants, and awesome jackets that make you feel like a superwoman. But fall also means that I'm gonna have to start drying my hair in the mornings which makes me a little unhappy. But on the up side, I might actually start looking like a human being at work!

    So in honor of fall, here are two outfits that I am immediately going to purchase. Everything featured are from my favorite "save me money" stores Forever 21, Old Navy, and Target.

    I am recently loving on purple and according to WG1 it is the go-to color of the season. I am also really into rings lately - big and gaudy is my motto. Brings a little bit of flair into my day-to-day outfits.

    While this outfit is on the verge of being "too wintery", I still love it. My wardrobe is all about grey, black and red this fall.

    Omigosh do I just love autumn and hot chocolate and apple cider and hay stacks and leaves!

    Saturday, October 4, 2008

    We Can't Say It Enough - Thank You!

    We're not gonna lie, we are overwhelmed by the volume of response we have been getting about our blog. Would it be corny to break out the good ole line of, "You love us! You really love us!". No? Good, because we are flattered. And we just wanted to let you know that we love you too! Thank you for all your support and your comments. We love being able to share our Working Girl experiences with you all, so thank you for coming back day after day!

    Now on to our more specific thanks and shout outs.  

    This past week Just Lizabell nominated our blog for the "I Heart Your Blog" award and we couldn't be more thrilled. Her blog is da bomb (yep, I'm trying to bring back cheesy '90s jargon) so you should check her out. 

    Also back in July we were awarded Shelby Nycole's coveted placement of "Blog of the Week" on her blog. Below is one of her fabulous photos which just screams Working Girl. A big 'gracias chica' from us!

    And last but not least, this past August the South African magazine Chew featured Working Girl in the "Hot Blogs" section of their "Dream Issue". (Just in case you want to check us out, we're on page 7). 

    So we are over the moon excited about all the buzzing that has been going on. So thank you for all our new awards, and thank you for all your comments, and thank you for all the blog love! 

    Friday, October 3, 2008

    Meeting Notes

    Meeting Notes is a weekly feature. Here we will dish on tidbits, news, and important things we think you Working Girls should know. So scroll down to hear what we think you should glean from this work week.
    • Over The Hills: It's been weeks since my last The Hills post and I would to officially state that I am over it. The dramatic reality show was fun when it was slightly believable but now I find Spiedi too draining to watch and Lo, who used to me be favorite, became a bitch. And while I applaud the girls for carving themselves careers out their reality success, they just aren't the type of Working Girls I want to waste my time on.
    • Fall Fashion: Target (a.k.a. the best store ever) will have some new fashionable fall accessories for us very soon. British handbag designer Anya Hindmarch's line designed for Target and Sigerson Morrison footware line will start selling in Target stores on Oct 12th. Get there soon, you know they'll sell out.
    • Vote!: The 2008 presidential election is weeks away, are you registered to vote? If not, click here and register.
    • No Money, Lots of Problems: I wont try to make any sense of the financial crisis. Both of my roommates work in finance and/or on Wall Street, when they talk about work it's like their speaking chinese. Bottom line, something has to be done and no one can agree on what. While some of us may support the bailout and others may not, if it does not pass it could have a negative affect on our fellow Working Girls. Not everyone on Wall Street is rich and greedy. Some of them are just your average Working Girl.
    • When the Working Day is Done: Enjoy this fantastic cover from Miley Cyrus and enjoy the weekend!

    Thursday, October 2, 2008

    Something in the Air

    Last night, I was the last person to leave the office.

    At 6:30PM, I looked up from my cube and everyone was gone. I looked out the window and saw that it was already dark out. Earlier than normal. Something felt different. I walked outside and it smelled like autumn. Autumn. My favorite season.

    Autumn reminds me of going back to school, starting a new year. For the second year, I did not go back to school in September. This year was easier than last, but it doesn't take away that new year feeling.

    For some reason this year, the feeling is affecting me more. Specifically at work. My favorite part of starting a new school year was organizing myself for the year. This week has been slower than a normal week, so I took advantage and got organized. I cleaned out my inbox and all of my folders. I made timelines for my upcoming projects and I was finally able to begin working on our upcoming event (our biggest event of the year).

    This slow week is the calm before the storm. Our event is 3 weeks away. My monthly projects are starting up again. And who knows what else will come up next week. Having a few days to feel the surge of a new season and time to reorganize and even just take a step back and breathe, makes a huge difference in my work life.

    Remember the burn out at the end of the school year? You couldn't wait to be done. Then summer came and you got a break. This week was my much needed break. Which reminds me, I really need a vacation.

    Wednesday, October 1, 2008

    New Kid on the Aisle

    For seven glorious months I have had no next-door cube neighbor. The absence of a co-worker sitting next to me has been blissful. I can talk loudly on the phone, not share my gum with others, and throughout the course of the day talk out loud to myself without others judging me.

    My loony behavior however has come to an end with the arrival of the New Kid. I had been informed last week by HR (who is by the way only one man who also serves as our legal counsel) that the New Kid would be occupying the cubicle next to mine and all the stuff that I had been stowing there had to be moved. Quick explanation, since my last next-door neighbor had moved out I have been using New Kid's desk as my second desk. I just have a lot of stuff - marketing materials take up a lot of space! And I just recently had my closet taken away for me because it is now fall and people need a place to put their coats. Coats schmoats.

    Anyway, I agreed to let the New Kid move in if he was A) attractive and B) single, to which HR/Legal Guy responded with a snort and said, "Move your stuff." I begrudgingly moved my things (which means I now live underneath a mountain of paper and cardboard boxes), and the New Kid moved in on Monday.

    I hate to say it, but I already loathe him and it's only been three days. But the guy is just trying way too hard and he doesn't stop talking. I know it's a new job for him and he's just trying to fit in, but the guy is going overboard. He has tried to get in on inside jokes already with me and other co-workers, invited himself into the work football pool, and told me about his entire high school, college and work histories.

    New Kid also had to ask how to open Outlook. And I showed him. I have now become his go-to person. You know, the person he asks every. single. question. How do I file a question for tech? Where can I find a stapler? How can I order these pens I really like? How do I open Excel on this computer? It is a tiny bit draining.

    I am completely sympathetic for him. New job, new people. He's just trying to fit in. I get it. But when I started this job, I didn't have friends until at least month three. It takes time to get to know a person. So don't talk me to death. I like things to happen naturally. No pressure, no forcing friendships. Here's to hoping this New Kid on my aisle stops trying so hard and stops talking so much.

    What I wouldn't give for that cubicle back.