Monday, August 31, 2009

Working Girl Cooks: Steak Salad

When I said Working Girl Cooks would be a bi-weekly feature what I meant to say was it would be a when WG1 remembers to take pictures while she cooks and isn't embarrassed to do so in-front of her roommates feature.

I remembered to take some photos and explained to my roommates what I was doing last week when I cooked one of my favorite meals: steak salad. Three things I love are spinach, steak and goat cheese. And that's all I need for this dish for one. Oh and balsamic vinaigrette, salt and pepper.

First I cooked a small steak that I picked up at Whole Foods. When I buy steak I just buy the cheapest piece I can find. I don't know if it's skirt steak, flank steak, whatever. I like meat and I like it cheap.
I seasoned with salt and pepper.

While the steak cooked (about 10 min, 5 min on each side) I tossed the spinach salad in the balsamic dressing.

Once the steak was cooked medium rare, I sliced into thin pieces and added it to the top of the salad. I also added goat cheese. Because a Working Girl One salad isn't a salad if it doesn't have goat cheese.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

TGISF: Thank God Its (Summer) Friday

I am so looking forward to work tomorrow for two reasons. One: tomorrow is Friday. Two: half the office will be out for a summer Friday.

I love summer Fridays. Even when I don't have the day off. Earlier this month I took my summer Fridays and it was fantastic to have a day off to sleep-in, get things done and enjoy my day. But when I'm in the office and most of the office is out enjoying their days off, I have time to get stuff done. There are less emails, less phone calls and less people popping up at my desk.

This week has been a little crazy. It was supposed to be my week to work on all the little events we have coming. I ended up spending most of my week working on our big event. Tomorrow will be my day to get organized and take some time so focus on the things on my to-do list that have been ignored.

Unless I totally jinxed myself by writing this post. I really hope not.

On that note, I'm going to bed and praying for a productive, uninterrupted day.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Meeting Notes

Meeting Notes is a weekly feature. Here we will dish on tidbits, news, and important things we think Working Girls should know. So scroll down to hear what we think you should glean from this work week.
  • Drink your way to more money! A study from 2006 shows that people who drank earned more money. People who drank socially make more contacts and had an easier time finding a new job that earned them more money. [ via Savvy Sugar]
  • The He-cession. It's being reported that men are suffering more in our current economic recession. More men are losing their jobs and families are suffering. Not only because they've lost their jobs but because their female counterparts are not earning as much. [via Jezebel]
  • Fall clothes! Autumn is around the corner and I could not be more ready for fall apparel. Work Chic has some advice on my two fall favorites: jackets and scarves.
  • I die! The Rachel Zoe Project is back in action on Bravo. My X sentence recap. Brad's attitude has shaped up and he's appearing to be a great Working Boy. Taylor's more cranky than ever. Rachel is Bananas and I cannot wait for the rest of the season. [Bravo]

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Penny-Pinching Days

Lately, all I think about are apartments and money. Apartments because the boyfriend and I are moving in together in October (please don't tell my Granny). Money because I'm saving for all the costs of moving (hiring movers, security deposit, etc.).

While I've been living paycheck to paycheck since I started working, I haven't been frugal by any means. If I saw a shirt I liked, I'd buy it. If I was far away from home and lazy, I'd take a cab. If I was out to dinner, I'd have a glass of wine (or 4).

All along the way, I've been saving what I can. Saving is important but I also strongly believe that living is important too. Especially here in New York. I don't pay a ridiculous amount for rent to sit in my apartment and watch TV.

These days, I'm keeping track of my money like it's my job. I've been making lunches (and breakfasts and snacks) to bring to work. Renting movies On Demand instead of going to the theater. When I do go out to eat it's for some cheap eats. I'm clipping coupons (and turning into my mother). I'm saving a lot more than I used to.

Since everything here is expensive I've been shopping around when it comes to where I shop. My two new favorites: Whole Foods and Bed, Bath and Beyond.

Whole Foods can be pricey. Very pricey. But not when you buy the Whole Foods brand 365 Everyday Value. For example, brand name yogurt at the average New York grocery story is $1.09. Whole Foods yogurt $0.79. Buying 365 Everyday Value cheese crackers is cheaper than buying Cheez-Its.

Bed, Bath & Beyond really does go beyond. Once my go-to for home needs, Bed, Bath & Beyond is now my go-to for all my drugstore needs. There is an entire drugstore within Bed, Bath & Beyond! Earlier this week, I went to Duane Reade to purchase a new hair brush (I'm pretty sure my little sister stole mine when I was visiting her last weekend). The brush I wanted was $10.99! For a Conair hairbrush! At Bed, Bath & Beyond a very similar and also Conair brush was $4.99.

Hopefully my savings at Whole Foods and Bed, Bath & Beyond, along with cutting back on shopping and dining out, will help me move with out going totally broke.

Monday, August 24, 2009

I Have Work Friends. When Did That Happen?

Today was my first day back at work after a week and half off of vacation. (Sidenote: If I could move to Europe right now, I would. My trip was fantastical. I love the Mediterranean. Everyone go there now.)

The first day back is always the worst. No matter what stress is involved. I spent two hours checking emails on Saturday and I still didn't get all caught up until 5PM today. The first day back almost always involves a lot of meetings, eating lunch at your desk, popping multiple Excedrin, and being "invisible" on Gchat so that you're not bombarded by all your friends wanting to know how your vacay was.

Today was not just a day of stress for me however. Today was a day of realizations. And that realization was that I have work friends.

I've been saying for a while now that I don't have many work friends. I actually moan about it a lot on this blog (and to WG1) and that's mainly because at my last job in NYC I felt like I had a lot of friends to commiserate with. I had people to eat lunch with, talk about reality TV with, and just generally chat with. And after a long vacation (or even just a day off), I would spend hours catching up with my NYC coworkers.

So I felt a little sad this morning when I got to work and I didn't have my NYC coworkers to dish with. Of course my new cube mates (I switched desks recently so I have new cubicle neighbors) asked me how my trip was, but they didn't ask me about any details.

Later in the day, I went to hang out with one of my work friends in her office. As I was complaining about all the work I have to do in the next few weeks, she responded with, "Yea you might want to get on that since you've spent the last hour making the rounds chatting up all your work buds. Have you done any work today other than socialize?"

And it was then I realized that I had work friends. Without even realizing it I had wandered aimlessly around the office for an hour stopping to chat with coworkers about my trip and their weekends (turns out one of my coworkers was born in Turkey! Who knew!). An hour! Spent talking to coworkers! And I thought I had no work friends.

Turns out I have nothing to moan about after all. After eight months at my new company, I have work friends. And that's a pretty nice realization to start a week off with.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Meeting Notes

Meeting Notes is a weekly feature. Here we will dish on tidbits, news, and important things we think Working Girls should know. So scroll down to hear what we think you should glean from this work week.
  • A new study conducted by ForbesWoman magazine recently reported that the best place for a woman to have both a career and children is NYC. It ranked highest among 50 cities based on earnings, access to health and day care, and cost of living. Coming in second and third were Austin, TX and Minneapolis, MN. [via Daily Mail]
  • I recently happened upon this new shrinkable umbrella. The user can adjust the umbrella by pulling a handle so that it adjusts to the space you are in. So "polite"! Put that on my wish list. [via Cup of Jo]
  • Summer is almost over, but these 101 ways to make a salad are too good to not let you all know about! Each salad featured in this NY Times article should only take about 20 minutes to make and use minimal ingredients. But they all look divine and perfect for cooking for one! [via NY Times]
  • If you're looking for a new or different career path (or new college major), most Americans have recently cited the medical field as the best field for young women to engage in. According to, 37% recommended medicine, and 10% recommended nursing. [Gallup]

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

No More Days Of Summer (Interns)

This summer, I had fabulous interns. Well, I had one bad hire but we don't have to go into that. I'm trying very hard to block out that memory.

Summer interns are truly the best kind of interns. Summer interns can come in three to five days a week. Summer interns can stay in the office all day. Summer interns, because they are working more often, learn quickly and can we an amazing asset.

Last week, the last of my summer interns left to go study abroad or go back to school to enjoy the college life that I miss oh so much. And I, along with the rest of my department, am left with no one to help us with our work load.

I tried my darnedest to get a head start on interview and hiring interns for the fall semester. I emailed HR weeks before the fall semester would start and ask for our internship to be posted on local college sites. I received a decent number of responses and sent applications to some.

No one has "jumped off the page," if you will. But before even reading their full applications, many applicants turned me off. When asked when they are available to work I got some very limiting responses. One answer: I am available Monday and Tuesday after 3:00 PM. Another: Available Monday through Thursday for a total of 10 hours per week.

Students have classes and a number of universities put a limit on the number of hours students can intern during the school year. But these limits aren't helping anyone. Companies aren't getting the most of the interns and interns aren't getting the most from the companies for which they intern.

As an editorial intern at a women's magazine I worked one day a week. I loathed that internship and I believe it was because of my short schedule. Every day felt like the first day. No one knew who I was. Though, it didn't help that my desk was in a closet. Interns who were in the office for two or three days a week learned more and learned it quickly. It took much longer for me to get the hang of the job. I wasn't a real asset to the magazine.

When I finally got to the applications there were spelling errors and grammar error all over the place. Now, I'm not exactly one to preach. I cannot spell to save my life and my grammar could be better. My advice to applicants: proof read! Back when writing cover letters was practically my job I sent a cover letter to an editor at Teen People (RIP) only I forgot to change the name from a Cosmo Girl (RIP) editor to the Teen People editor. From then on, I had a friend, roommate, parent proof read all of my cover letters.

Tomorrow, I plan on scheduling some interviews and request more applications.

Monday, August 17, 2009

We Need a Contributor!

Once upon a time, Working Girl had Working Girl Contributors. Girls from Boston, LA, and Dallas (and other cities too!), who all wrote about their own experiences of just being out of college and trying to find the perfect job and dealing with college withdrawal.

And we want to bring this feature back to Working Girl! And to do so we'd like to involve our readers. Because we all know you're the ones we (and the rest of the world) want to hear from - real girls in the working trenches.

So here is our plea - we need contributors!

The Assignment
This past week, WG2 had a wardrobe malfunction when her wrap dress got blown open by the wind and she showed all of Chicago that she wore Spanx to work. We want to know about your worst wardrobe malfunction. So tell us all about it!

The Rules
The entry should only be one-page long in a Word document (double spaced please). We will only accept one entry per person. All submissions should be sent to and need to be in our inbox by 5:00PM on August 24th. That's one whole week to figure out your story and submit it. We will post our favorite submission on Working Girl in September.

Any questions? Shoot us an email at or Or you can always tweet or DM us on Twitter as well - @workinggirlone and @workinggirltwo.

We can't wait to read your entries!

Friday, August 14, 2009

The Summer Job Files: Editorial Intern

The summer before our senior year, WG1 and I each put down a down payment on NYU summer housing before we had even started looking for jobs or internships. We were ballsy to say the least. The both of us just knew we'd find something, anything because we just had to live in New York City.

It will probably come as no surprise to any of you that WG1 and I each had our first real job interviews on the same day. (Yes, it seems we literally do everything together). We both put on our best WG interview outfits and trekked into the city super early, had our interviews, and then celebrated our success by eating a grown-up lunch at Rue 57 (we even had Midori Sours even though I'm pretty sure we weren't 21 yet...scandalous).

While waiting to hear if we had snagged these pretty awesome internships at women's magazines, we started to interview at places we weren't as excited about. I personally interviewed at a publishing company where I was offered a paying job almost on the spot. While I was kinda bummed I still hadn't heard from the glam editorial internship at the women's magazine, I was excited that this job was paying (something the internship was not).

And then a few days later, I got the call from the women's mag I had interview with- I had gotten the internship! I was in! Only downside was that the gig wasn't paid, but unlike WG1 I only had to work 2-3 days a week.

WG1 and I moved into our NYU apartment and instantly became friends with two of our roommates and I have to say that summer was insanely fun and it made me fall in love with NYC. We went out almost every weekend (and weekday), went to museums, tried new restaurants, shopped way too much, and even (kinda) enjoyed living in Chinatown.

While most of our roommates had pretty typical internships, mine turned out to be utterly unique. For starters, since the women's mag that I interned for was relatively new (only 3 years old at the time), we worked out of the editor-in-chief's Upper West Side apartment. My desk was a kitchen table and her dog slept on my feet while I wrote articles on a computer that I was required to stash away in a closet at the end of the night.

My magazine itself was quite small - the editorial team only consisted of four people, two of which were interns. This meant of course that I was able to do a lot of writing and acquired a lot of writing samples. Our magazine also did a lot of smaller events, which is probably where I got my first taste of what it was like to work in event marketing. We made goody bags for Hampton Jitney passengers, worked street corners handing them out, put on a beauty event at Perricone MD, and even worked a fashion show (which I couldn't help out with because school had started womp).

What I loved most about my internship were the people. Since the company was so small, I ended up getting to know my coworkers really well. We all seemed to be very in sync and I loved to come to work just so we could chat, brainstorm, and complain together. We were a little family.

The story of my internship that summer is just beginning, because while I loved the people I worked with, I can't overlook the fact that I worked for the devil. But she didn't wear Prada, she wore vintage.

To Be Continued...

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Screwing Around on the Job

Have you ever slept with someone just because you thought their job was sexy?

I recently came across this Marie Claire blog post written by a woman named Maura Kelly who recently met a glam & fab woman at a glitzy party. They got to talking about her interesting job - how she does high profile events and how she has access to things not a lot of other people do. The one drawback to her job? That guys are more into her because of her job and how she often wonders if they're sleeping with her or her job.

This whole concept got me thinking. My job is not nearly cool enough for people to envy me for it, but as an event planner I do get a lot of perks. You know, a free pen from Marriott, a bathrobe from the Gansevoort, a free meal, tickets to a Cubs game - all things that they try to throw at me so I use their hotel for an event. Sure these things are kinda cool, but definitely not something that would lure a guy in - or for a guy to try and screw me over for.

But I see this woman's point. We hear about gold digging women quite often (like in Kanye West songs), but what about the gold digging dudes? The guys out there looking for the hook up from women with cool jobs? We don't hear about them that often. And I'm not talking just guys out there who are looking for women with wealth, but women with perk-related jobs.

What kind of jobs do you think men go gaga over? My guesses would be anything having to do with modeling, acting, or sports-related. And yes, I just did a large stereotype. Sorry boys!

It also got me wondering about what kinds of jobs turn me on. I think a man in uniform - policemen, firemen, soldiers - all sort of turn my head (especially during Fleet Week - right WG1? Wink, wink). I have to admit anything finance related makes me yawn, but bring up writing and I'm instantly batting my eyelashes no matter what the dude looks like.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Meeting Notes

Meeting Notes is a weekly feature. Here we will dish on tidbits, news, and important things we think Working Girls should know. So scroll down to hear what we think you should glean from this work week.
  • Abercrombie hires for looks. American Apparel hires for style. At least, that's what they want you to think. [via]

Monday, August 10, 2009

Julie & Julia Makes Me Want to Go Work

I just got home from seeing the movie Julie & Julia and I feel super energized/motivated to just do something! Anything! Maybe even cook (or not because WG1 is the cook/baker...I could burn water).

I think we all know that the story centers around Julie Powell, author of the blog the Julie/Julia Project, and superstar chef Julia Child. Originally, I didn't really want to see this movie since I definitely want to be a foodie, but I definitely am not (I could eat chicken fingers every night for dinner if asked). But my dad offered to take me to see the movie and out to dinner and I can't pass up a free meal/movie, so I accepted. And to say I was pleasantly surprised is an understatement.

Don't worry! I don't intend to put up any spoilers! I just want to talk about how inspiring these two women are to WG's.

I know I am young. I'm only 24. I've only been out of school for 2 years. But I'm sure if you read this blog quite often, you know that this was not the career I pictured myself falling into. Right now I currently work in marketing and corporate event planning, and while I love it I know it's not my first true love (because if it was I probably wouldn't be writing this blog). Yes, everyone, I too, like many other bloggers, want to be a writer. I have wanted to be a writer since I was a little girl. I used to write books when I was 10! But sometimes paying the bills is more important than finding a job that makes you want to jump out of bed at 6AM every morning because you're so excited to be there.

Watching Julie Powell and Julia Child being portrayed in this movie tonight reminded me that being happy at work is essential. Julie Powell blogs her way to success after not finding satisfaction with her job that pays the bills, and Julia Child found her calling in cooking much later in life after dabbling somewhat in espionage. Yes, espionage. And it made me want that feeling - that after I leave my 9-to-5, I want to feel like I accomplished something.

And so right now I can't be a stay-at-home writer, but I can appreciate that I finished everything on my to-do list today or that I kicked ass in a meeting. Find happiness in the little things until you find that big thing that makes you jump with joy.

What they Powell and Child had in common in this movie was finding joy in what they do. And really this should serve as an inspiration to all us WG's. If you find joy in what you do for a living, then ultimately you will lead a happier life - that's the lesson I learned today while at the movies.

P.S. Sorry if this post makes zero to little sense. After the movie, my dad and I hit up Filipo's (which was AMAZING - go there!) after the movie where we each finished a bottle of scrumptious wine. And then to top it off, our server Annette, loved us so much she made us take shots of limoncello with her that was made with Everclear. Yea, not a good idea. Everybody in the club getting tips(y).

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Working Girl Cooks: Cooking For One

I spend a lot of time thinking about food. Mainly, what I'm going to have for dinner. I love reading food blogs and watching the Food Network, but I have a difficult time cooking meals for one. I take that back, it's pretty easy to pan-fry some chicken and put some greens on a plate. But a Working Girl can only eat so much chicken.

I'm a fairly new cook. My news year's resolution, which I've finally decided to start practicing, was to cook or bake something new once a week. I've yet to find a site or blog that focuses on cooking for one, so I've decided to start a bi-weekly feature here on Working Girl called Working Girl Cooks.

Inspired by a friend's tweet, I decided to cook goat cheese and roasted corn quesadillas. Corn is one of my favorite summer veggies, and I'll eat practically anything with goat cheese.

The original recipe can be found here. Below is the WG1 version.

Half a bag of frozen corn
Half a container of crumbled goat cheese
6 corn tortillas (6-inch)

I defrosted the corn in the microwave and then sauteed the corn in a pan over medium heat. In the future, I would follow the original recipe more closely and use fresh corn, since I suspect it may brown a little nicer.
I then transferred the corn to a bowl and combined the goat cheese. Yum.

I put the mixture onto the tortilla and topped with some salsa. I then put the tortilla in the pan until the tortilla browns a bit. I topped with another tortilla and flipped! I then repeated with a new tortilla.

I made three tortillas, had some salsa on the side for dipping and some diced avocado because I just love avocado. Almost as much I love goat cheese. Voila!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Meeting Notes

Meeting Notes is a weekly feature. Here we will dish on tidbits, news, and important things we think Working Girls should know. So scroll down to hear what we think you should glean from this work week.
  • Back in March, it was announced that publishing house Conde Nast was ridding its ranks of all receptionists not on "editorial floors", but rumor has it that all the remaining receptionists will be laid off in the (very) near future. [via Gawker]

  • A lot of women are up in arms about Hollywood's recent treatment of women in movies (example: Sandra Bullock's bitchy boss character in The Proposal and Meryl Streep's portrayal of Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada). The most recent culprit is Katherine Heigl's control-freak TV producer character in the movie The Ugly Truth who is tamed by manly, brutish male character played by Gerard Butler. [via NPR]

  • A report presented in July by the Women and Work Comission in London stated that women are still paid almost 23 percent less than men in on average but the economy could benefit up to 23 billion pounds if that gap were closed. [via New York Times]

  • We are uber excited for the new Alexis Bledel movie, Post Grad, to come out on August 21st! We think a lot of us will be able to relate to the theme of not being able to find a job after graduation. Trailer below!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Three Day Weekends Every Weekend

It's only Tuesday and you're already counting down the to the weekend. Friday can't come sooner. Wouldn't it be nice if you could count down to Thursday instead?

If you were a government employee in Utah, you'd be used to this schedule by now. But there is a catch of course, employees have to work 10-hour days Monday through Thursday to make up for the lost time on Friday.

According to this article from The Atlantic, 82% of the employees prefer the new work schedule. The state of Utah has also found that the change is helping them a be little more green. They've saved $1.8 million in electricity and eliminated 6,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide.

Scientific American said that many local governments have been looking at Utah as they consider changing their work week. This could very well catch on in local government. And maybe further to other industries?

If my office changed to a 4-day, 40-hour work week, I'd have to work nine to seven without a break for lunch. Some weeks, I eat lunch at my desk every day and I'm at the office until 6:30 every night. Another half hour every night wouldn't kill me. Then I'd have Friday off and Thursday would be the new Friday.

This is all fine and good. But I spend a lot of money on the weekend. Even when I'm making a effort to spend less, I spend more on a weekend day then I do on a week day. I shop, go to the movies, go out to dinner and more. Could I afford a 3-day weekend? Not to mention instead of my company spending money to keep the office cool in the summer or warm in the winter, I'd be spending my own money on that for an extra day.

Comments on The Atlantic article bring up a number of other concerns: Would an extra day with your kids make up for two less hours with them each night? Would this really work in most industries? Would letting employees work from home for a day be a better idea for business?

Something that seems so simple and beneficial to all involved, may not be so.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Suing Mad

As reported by the Huffington Post, a woman filed a lawsuit last week against Monroe College where she received her bachelor's degree because she can't find a job.

The woman, 27-year-old Trina Thompson, claims that the Bronx school has failed to provide her with what it promised her when she first enrolled - help from the Office of Career Advancement to provide her with leads and career advice. Because she hasn't found a job and has claimed to not have received adequate attention from the college, she is requesting that the $70,000 she spent on her information technology degree be returned to her.

A lot of this lawsuit seems to be tied up in what Thompson feels is false advertisement. If you peruse Monroe College's website, you'll see that they promise a "focused, career-oriented, quality education" and state that every student will receive a Career Advisor who will provide them with one-on-one assistance. The site goes on and on to tell them just how they can help them - resume writing, job search strategies, and even boasts that they have an E-recruiting tool where you can find job postings. So Thompson's lawayers are going to have to prove that she was pulled in by a lure of a false promise that wasn't delivered on.

I guess I'm having a hard time thinking how they're going to prove that Thompson didn't receive adequate attention. And if Thompson's lawyers manage to win this case, then is our country (and world) going to go suing mad? Couldn't I just as easily sue my own college for not finding me a job after I graduated?

Personally, I believe that our educations and the services our colleges/universities give us are just tools. We then use these tools to procure employment. Essentially it is up to us to find jobs, but we can choose to utilize places like career centers and people like career advisors to assist us in finding that job. They can't just magically make it happen for us - we have to do the legwork ourselves.

What do you guys think?