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New Bond 9 “High Line”

February 25, 2010

Is it bad that I want this just for the awesome bottle? According to Blogdorf Goodman, it launches in March 2010. I’ve always been interested in Bond 9 fragrances, even more so now that I live in NYC, but I admit that I have no idea what they smell like. The bottles are pretty though!

The High Line park is still on my NYC “to-do” list – probably going to wait until it’s a little nicer and not SNOWING all the time to check it out though.

I currently use Lancome Tresor (long time favorite) and Burburry Classic (brand new favorite), but I might have to incorporate this one into my rotation – if for no other reason than it would look really pretty sitting on my nightstand.

Today Was “No Pants Day” in NYC…

January 11, 2010

I’m not joking. Today, January 10, 2010, was NYC’s annual “No Pants Day.” Forget the ice on the ground and the fact that it’s below freezing up here, thousands of New Yorkers picked today to prance around sans pants. This city is full of weirdos.

As far as New Year’s resolutions go, I have made a little progress I guess. I haven’t joined a gym yet, because I haven’t signed my lease, but that should happen sometime this week. I did buy floss though! And I’ve been reasonably good about using it. The blogging (as I write this at 1:15 a.m.) has been a little more difficult, but maybe I should go for shorter, more frequent posts. Cleaning… I’ll try to do better this week.

New Year’s Resolutions

January 4, 2010

Jess and me - New Year's toast 2010

Happy (belated) New Year! I skipped the collard greens and black eyed peas this year, but I am going to try to set up a hopefully keep-able list of new year’s resolutions. Maybe if I actually write them down, I might have a better chance of keeping them? Here it goes…

  1. Update this blog at least once per week: I know I’ve made this promise many times, but I can’t seem to manage keeping up with writing unless I put it in some sort of schedule. I figure I can write one post every Sunday, minimum, with a goal to work up to more than that. It should be doable.
  2. Make sure the cleanliness of my apartment (or lack thereof) wouldn’t scare my parents: I admit, I’m setting the bar a little low, but I just cleaned mold of my bathroom ceiling that has been living there for months. The dust on our living room floor rivals the size of some New York sewer rats (we’re not at Brooklyn-level yet, thank God). I just pulled a two month old yogurt out of my fridge. You get the idea.
  3. Join a gym: This one isn’t as difficult as it would seem. I’m just waiting until I sign my new lease (any day now!) but have already set aside the finances. It even has a pool!
  4. Go to said gym (at least 3x per week): Slightly more difficult, especially with crazy-long work days, but shouldn’t be too bad since it’s 16 degrees outside so I probably won’t have anything better to do.
  5. Keep up with my friends from home/college: This one too will require a schedule (how sad is that!). One phone call per week to a different friend to ensure I still have some if I should decide the South is where I should be. Actually, this plan should probably include New York friends too – just in case the weather really does turn everyone into hermits.
  6. Floss: except for I just ran out… oops

I don’t know if these resolutions (assuming I can keep any or all of them) will make me a better or happier person, but writing them down makes me feel like I’m at least trying. Who knows if updating my blog is worth the time, or if anyone cares that my apartment is marginally cleaner? But keeping in touch with friends is definitely important, and my dentist would freak out if he knew I had been slacking on my flossing. I’m a happier person when I work out, and I’m pretty good at sticking with it if I have the facilities to do so.

A lot of people have said that 2009 has kind of sucked, and in a lot of ways I agree with them. But I moved up here in 2009, my mom beat cancer (again) in 2009, I got my first job in 2009 and I’ve made a lot of amazing new friends in 2009. 2009 was alright by me, but I’m still going to try to make 2010 a whole lot better!

Wait… I’m still here?

October 12, 2009

If you had asked me back in May what I would be doing right now, I don’t think I would have told you I would be working in a full-time position in PR in New York. There are a couple of reasons for this; the first being that I had no idea at that point in my life that I would be moving to New York. Every time someone asks me how me, a girl from Birmingham, Alabama, ended up in New York, I really don’t have an answer. It’s not that I didn’t want to be here; it’s more that I didn’t realize that it was even a possibility. Much less staying here…

Long story short, at the end of September I was offered a full-time position at Weber Shandwick in the Consumer Practice. I’m about to start my fourth week there and I couldn’t be happier. I am working on several accounts that span several different categories – from beauty & health to tech to home goods.

Even though I’m no longer working in a specifically digital practice, I have made an effort to keep up with what’s going on in the social media world. The most exciting update I have today is that I just received my invite to test the much-hyped Google Wave. I’ve played around with it a little today, but I can tell that I need to go back and read through all of my archived Mashable articles in order to figure out how I’m supposed to use this thing. I just read an article in Time about how it feels like you’re being invited to a super-exclusive party and it’s pretty accurate. The only bummer is that none of my friends (except for my dad – who gave me the invite – thanks!) have arrived yet.  I hope  it doesn’t take too long! I hear that I have eight invites I can give out, but I haven’t quite gotten to that point yet.

Anyway, I can tell that this week is going to be a really long one, so I’m going to try to get some sleep. I’ll have to put the “waving” on hold til tomorrow…

Just go Google yourself.

September 3, 2009

090209_GoogleToday I did something I usually judge people for: I Googled myself. I was just curious – part of me wanted to see exactly how many Lauren Branders there are in the world, and part of me wanted to see if I had, somehow, accomplished anything newsworthy (in someone else’s eyes at least) recently. What I found surprised me.

The first listing that popped up was my LinkedIn profile. I’ll confess – I’m not a huge fan of LinkedIn. It feels to me like a car without the works. There are a lot of buttons there that show you what you could do if you upgraded to the premium package, but until then you’re stuck with a constant reminder that you’re cheap/broke.

The other curveball Google threw at me was Twitter. I know that whatever I say on Twitter lives forever and ever, but I didn’t realize that, when someone searches my name, almost everything I’ve ever tweeted shows up. Even posts from February or so – more than six months ago! I’ll definitely remember that next time I decide to send an oh-so-witty update before I’ve had my morning coffee.

The lesson from this exercise in humility is that I really need to manage my Google. That means filling out the LinkedIn profile, even though I think it’s a pain. It means actually doing something with my branded Web page (that just sits, and sits). Thanks Dad; I can already hear the “I told you so.”

Let’s be honest. The first time you meet someone, or you get an introduction, what do you do? If you’re like me, you Facebook them. Then, after you realize they (probably) have a protected profile, you Google them. I’d just like to know what people are finding.

Oops…

August 20, 2009
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So much for writing every day… That lasted for a whopping one day. I really want to try, though. The problem is that my work comes in waves – one minute things are nice and peaceful and the next everything has gone to chaos. It’s amazing how much can change in the course of one hour. I’m off to an extra long day at work, but I’m hoping that the fact it’s Thursday (almost Friday) will pull me through.

New York Can Surprise You Sometimes.

August 19, 2009

081809_SubwayOr rather, the people here can. For some (maybe good) reason I’m always skeptical when anyone tries to give me free stuff. Especially here. That’s why, when a guy on the subway this morning (7:30 a.m. no less!) offered me his seat, I looked at him like he was crazy. He wasn’t crazy, he was just being polite.

On the other hand, I live in a city of extremes. As my friend put it today, “We live on a tiny island full of f***ing freaks!” It’s true – the island is relatively small, especially for how many people, and different types of people, who are crammed in here. And not all of them wear their crazy on the outside.

A month or two ago I was walking down the street with a friend during my (rare) lunch break and the strangest thing happened.  A man, not anyone who I would pick out as being a loony bird, came up to me and got about three inches from my face. He proceeded to elicit a startlingly loud “QUAAAAAACK!!!” in my face. And then he walked on by. Now, had he been pacing back and forth and talking to himself, I would have been prepared: ” This guy’s probably going to do something a little strange.” But no – he blended in.

I’m learning – by experience – to expect the unexpected. I carry my umbrella at all times because chances are it’s probably going to rain the second I’m not expecting it. I plan alternative routes, just in case the subway happens to decide it doesn’t want to stop at my intended destination on a Wednesday morning. Unfortunately, I have also started to become a very skeptical person. I’m just hoping that this skepticism doesn’t turn into cynicism. I want to be pleasantly surprised when someone performs a random act of kindness. Not rustling around in my purse to make sure they didn’t swipe my wallet while they were at it.