Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Full Facial

I was indulging myself in a birthday gift last weekend, a facial at an upity faux-spa near our apartment. It was a lovely break, cream after potion was massaged onto my skin, and after each wrap of the warm (but not hot) towel around my face I felt more tension dissolve. That was, until the aesthetician started asking me, "Do any of your family members have ruddy skin?" Well, my dad has spent almost every day of his adult life out in the elements, so yes. "Do you tend to flush when you drink?" Doesn't everyone? "Does the skin around your nose ever peel?" Yeah, but hey, it's winter, what gives. "I think you may have mild roscascea. It's a genetic skin condition that often manifests in one's late 20's. There's really nothing you can do for it."

Schreeeeeech. Relaxation mode, recoil.

Sweet. What a perfect 26th birthday present. Upon arriving home, I immediately went to this website. My only comfort is that I have managed to find a man before my nose become completely deformed (not that there's anything wrong with that). Seriously though, so much for the relaxing facial.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Parisian 'Do

While we were in Paris at the end of December, we decided it wasn't worth it to wait in museum lines, and so we did a lot of walking. Moderates that we are, we split our wandering between the left and right banks. We delighted in the different neighborhoods, most of them charming in the way that only Paris can charm. On the last day of our visit we determined to hoof it to the train station. As we neared the station, we walked up 10 blocks of nothing but wig stores and hairstylists offering braiding and straightening. Here in DC, on part of New York Ave. there is a block of wig stores, but this avenue in Paris put that to shame. It was amazing, and something that the postcards don't bother to capture, so I've put a shot of one of the store fronts here for your enjoyment.


So here's the deal. I was offered a paying-job to work at a firm this summer and I was also offered an unpaid internship with a federal judge. I took the position with the federal judge. Why did I make this decision? Well, it was based on a number of factors, and tidbits of advice I received, and the thought that I want to put myself in a good position to do a clerkship upon graduation (if it turns out to be an appealing avenue) but I'm still not entirely comfortable with it.

Taking the position with the judge is the morally "right" thing to do in the circles I run in. It's very noble to turn down money in the quest for knowledge and an opportunity to see and do neat things. I have the luxury to do this because I have a very generous family who is willing to support me and who can do so without significant ramifications to their own lifestyle.

I'm incredibly grateful, but I'm also getting sick of living off of the family dime. I turned 26 a week ago today, I'm semi-smart and capable, and yet I'm not supporting myself. I feel guilty about this, and yet I continue to purchase things that I don't need. As I look to the summer and wedding plans, there is a good deal more spending ahead. I look around me and see lots of people living at or above their means, and I'm guilty too. But I'm not particularly motivated to scale back either.

It's all compounded by the sense that my financial future looks ok. I've put away substantial savings (with the help of generous family), and between my law degree and S's medical degree there is the potential for income that will make us very comfortable. Granted, there are a million factors that could change this financial future, and I'm not one to count my chickens before they hatch, and yet...

It's a perfect storm of privilege and it creates a sense of security and allows me the luxury to say, "the money can come later." But I'm uneasy with this. I'm antsy to test out my own "newfound" earning power (ridiculous as it is that one measly year of law school should produce such a jump). I'm eager to start paying back my loans and to get off the family and government dole.

This doesn't mean that I don't want to do interesting things, or that I'm only interested in earning money. I want both, and in typical 2006 fashion, I want them now! The choice for the summer is about privilege, but also about patience. And patience, so it's said, is a virtue. Hmph.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Things learned in the last 4 days

1. If I stay up for more than 24 hours, I get weepy -- in the sense that I can't stop crying, even though I'm not sure what I'm crying about.

2. If you get a job offer, it means that they want you and you should use this to your advantage, even if it means asking very nicely for them to wait just a little longer until you give them an answer. If someone offers you more time to think about something TAKE IT (I didn't do this).

3. If you are waiting on a second job offer, BE PATIENT. (I wasn't patient).

4. There are a whole stream of questions that only emerge once an offer becomes a reality. (This is why one should follow the remarks in #2 and #3 above).

5. Regret is a terrible feeling.