Weekend Reads #84

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The holiday rush is over.  The seasonal sponsored posts and gift guides have been published, the gifts have been purchased. My daughter finished her last day of school and doesn't return until next decade.  We have our traditional Christmas Eve and Christmas Day family activities and even booked a little getaway for New Year's. Other than continuing heathcare woes (yep, I thought it was all resolved last weekend reads but nope), I feel so… free.

I suck at being a holiday blogger.  I have grand plans of plotting out gift guides so they're ready to run every Friday from the beginning of November to just before Christmas.  Booking sponsored posts early, creating holiday content early so it can run itself most of December.  And it never happens and I freak out and mid-December I say, “screw it” and end the whole thing early.  And usually, I look back and am not glad about the missed revenue but glad about not turning Wardrobe Oxygen into Christmas Central for two to three months.  I'm going to plan 2020's holiday season better – not with more content planned early, but quality content that isn't centered around gift guides and sequined cocktail dresses.  I really enjoyed making my self-care gift guide this year.  It was whipped together pretty quickly without any agenda.  I want to make more content like that.  And while sequined cocktail dresses bring in all the likes on Instagram, looking at my analytics what resonates better with you are fun holiday earrings, a red cashmere sweater, maybe a dressy pantsuit that can still be worn beyond December.  Instead of feeling bad about missed opportunities, I'm going to see this as great research on how to make next year even better.

The rest of the year is going to be a mixed bag of content on Wardrobe Oxygen.  Nothing sponsored, nothing planned, likely a lot of random thoughts turned into posts (and of course there will be Weekend Reads next Saturday).  I already started one waxing poetic about my Nespresso machine (LOLOLOL but for realz tho) and one recapping my business in 2019.  I look forward to free-flowing thoughts, a bit of a palate cleanser to hit the ground running with fab content for 2020 – my 15th year of Wardrobe Oxygen and it will also be my 45th year on this planet!  If you celebrate any holidays this time of year, I hope they are very happy and you find some time for yourself amongst the madness. 

Weekend Reads

Last week on Instagram Stories I mentioned the hashtag #okayboomer.  And this upset a few boomers who follow me.  This hashtag isn't about an age, but a mindset.  It's an important hashtag to understand because it goes beyond stereotypes like “When I was your age…” to our current political climate.  In my stories and to those who replied with anger, I suggested reading this article about “OK boomer” and I am leaving it here as well because I think it clarifies it well. (Vox)

If you think you're aware of your kid's actions on social media just because you follow their accounts or chat with them about it or even log into their account from time to time… you're not.  I encourage you to read this piece. (Medium)

I loved reading about the sentimental pieces of cookware owned by DC-based chefs. (City Paper)

Refinery29 has a series called Money Diaries where they share a week of an anonymous person, how much they make, their bills, and what they spend on an average day.  I usually hate it, they're often people who come from money or make way more than what I make and spend on ridiculous things and just seem so materialistic.  But this one, this is a good one on so many levels and a must-read. (Refinery29)

2019 was the year of the newsletter.  While I unsubscribed from emails from many retailers, I subscribed to many more newsletters about all sorts of topics.  One of the most interesting ones I get is FWIW from ACRONYM which breaks down weekly the amount of money spent by presidential candidates on advertising, what kind of advertising, and where. 

It's not you.  Clothing sizes are broken. (Wall Street Journal but I believe this link will let you read it one time without the paywall)

Speaking of broken and clothing, a profile of three GenZ shoppers that will make your eco-friendly capsule-loving heart break. (New York Times)

You could say this is about Minecraft, a popular video game, but it's really about grief, parenting, and growth. (Narratively) 

A top tier of editors, photographers, stylists and buyers once decided which designers and which trends would dictate a season. But that validation no longer carries the same weight with customers. (Business of Fashion)

And for some good news… Women make up the majority of U.S. medical students for the first time. (Today)

And finishing up Weekend Reads with the 19 most important moments for women in 2019. (Elle)

While content will be a bit lean the rest of the year, there will be Weekend Reads next Saturday.  It makes me happy that this series has become so popular.  I really enjoy putting it together and chatting with you all about the articles, music, and daily life updates!

For Your Entertainment

Orville Peck.  I can't share much info on this artist because it's not really out there.  How album came out this year, he's this interesting mix of Roy Orbison and KD Lang and Chris Isaak and he wears this fringed mask all the time and his real name is not Orville Peck.  Based on visible tattoos, some have figured out who he really is, but it doesn't really matter.  He's clearly a music nerd, he loves country music, but his take on the genre is completely modern while also harking back to its roots. His voice is amazing, his style is one of a kind, his songs are haunting, and this video is so artistic I had to share it.

A woman with curly hair wearing a plaid blazer holds a green fur coat over her shoulder on a city street.

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  1. The Money Diaries you shared is simply amazing. So much love and joy from someone I think many people would look down on for lifestyle, choices, etc. Thank you so much.
    Regarding “Ok, Boomer…” I offer the advice we give my four year old when someone calls him a name.
    “Mama, so-and-so called me a baby.”
    Us: “Are you a baby?”
    Us. “Then why do you care?”
    People only have power over you that you give them.

  2. I think Weekend Reads is becoming one of my favorite things. As a disabled woman, I often wonder what would happen to me if I were to lose my husband. The money diaries story out so much into perspective. Especially how life is often wrapped up in your attitude and outlook. Several of these stories were eye opening and thought provoking.

    Looking forward to next weekend!

  3. I hope Chicos, Talbots and Soma are as disappointed in you as I am for your boomer comment, since that is a major segment of their customer base. I hoped name calling would be below your standard, but I was wrong.

    1. Hi Suzanne, I encourage you to join others in the discussion below. I am not a fan of the “cancel culture” that has run rampant this year and hope you wouldn’t try to “cancel” me or my career because of a hashtag used in a single Instagram Story slide that expired within 24 hours and without discussing it with me. I am really grateful to those who were upset by my use of it that did reach out, helped me understand their anger and educated me so I can pass on that education and understanding.

  4. Alison, I love Weekend Reads so much & eagerly wait for it on Saturdays! It may take me all weekend to get to each link, but that’s part of the fun. So sorry to hear the health insurance problems remain problematic. Why must health insurance in this country be SO damn hard? On a lighter note, I enjoy Money Diaries (I’m very nosy!) & had just recently read the one you highlighted. It was refreshing! I hope you & your family enjoy your holidays, including the get-away. Looking forward to future blog posts!

  5. I always look forward to your Weekend Reads. Thank you for sharing such interesting links. This is what makes you a genuine Influencer, capital I intended, and not just an extended commercial. I would gladly pay for a subscription to your blog for this kind of content.

  6. Thank you so much for posting the money diary link. It was the perfect antidote to the rampant commercialism that this season always brings. That woman’s gratitude and positivity brought tears to my eyes. Also, whatever you decide to post is cool with me. Your blog feels more like chatting with a friend to me, which is why I value it.

  7. I will be happy reading whatever you put out in your blog. It’s always interesting and there’s always something there to make one think. I normally just scroll through blogs that feature so much Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas hauls/sales links and such. It does get boring after a while, and I just have to say ENOUGH after a while. Looking forward to the New Year, new ideas and anything else in your upcoming blog. Happy holidays and many blessings to you and the family for the new year!

  8. I read the “OK boomer” piece, and although it raises a lot of good and fair points, it still appears to me as “anti-” boomer -“boomers failing to realize…”, “boomers failing to understand…”… I hear you say that isn’t about an age, but a mindset. But the reality is “boomer” directly references people in a specific age group (me 🙂 ). The article seems to fail to recognize, or at least acknowledge, that the generational divide is not new to our history. Show me one generation which isn’t misunderstood by the previous/next. I went through it (and still am). That’s not an excuse to not continue to strive for understanding, reconciliation, solutions, but this article almost exclusively focuses on why one side is right and other wrong. I guess as I’m on the wrong side of that divide, yes, I’m sensitive to what feels like an attack. As a target of ageism and beginning to feel the affects of how I’m sure my mother felt as she aged out of the new, cool generation, it hurts. It’s a daily assault in the media, at the office, at the mall, in our homes. I wish for “world peace”, beginning with those we live amongst and with, and dismissive retorts are not the mechanism to promote those aims. I applaud efforts to listen and dialogue, and realize that is a much more difficult and wearying task. We need to KOKO – keep on keepin’ on!

      1. This was a fantastic piece, Mariana, and I am so glad you shared it. Since sharing the hashtag that one moment on Instagram Stories I’ve been delving more into this. I both get why boomers are angry about the hashtag, but have also seen so many examples of those angry reacting in a way that is… I hate to say it, stereotypical to the meme. I appreciate your outlook and conviction and appreciate you taking the time to educate me and others. Seriously, thank you.

      1. Agreed. There is no standard boomer any more than there is a standard millennial. Humans are so varied. I don’t think they can be corralled by age any more than they can be corralled by gender.

      2. Born in 1957, I am definitely a baby boomer. But I actually totally get the frustration with my generation, because often I share it. My politics, values and lifestyle align more with my children and their cohort. I have many friends that would say the same. So I definitely agree that the boomers aren’t monolithic–but those who are acting as the article describes deserve some constructive criticism. I am pretty critical myself.

        I find myself frequently saying that it is precisely the younger generations, epitomized by Greta Thunberg, that give me hope that humanity may survive. . . And I am very invested in this survival, with a 6 month old granddaughter! However, I will point out that another of the articles that Alison posted a link to, the one about the three young women and their choices to spend so much money on throwaway clothes, is a picture that not everything is rosy with the younger people.

        As always, I am so very grateful Alison for the Weekend Reads. Have a wonderful holiday week with your family!

        1. I love your comment, Linda. I think the whole 2000’s have been spent with think pieces to fill the 24-hour news cycle about the failures of the Millenials, and now the failures of GenZ that it was a given there would be some retaliation, especially after the results of the 2016 presidential election and who voted for what. I don’t think all boomers fit one category, I do think this is history repeating itself because every young generation finds those above them to be out of touch and the reason for their struggles. But I also feel that this has come because of two decades of poking a stick at two generations that have been seen as lazy, entitled, materialistic, and delicate even though their accomplishments despite their struggles have proven otherwise time and time again. But me using the hashtag is just continuing the divide and I regret using it last weekend.

          1. As an older Millennial, and one who often doesn’t feel a part of that generation, I wanted to say thank you, Alison, for engaging in thoughtful conversation about the generational divide. I agree with those commenters saying that we should all be focusing on the issues, not the artificial divide among the generations. But I also agree with Alison that ‘OK Boomer’ comes as a response to negative generalizations about younger generations. It seems to me that when Millennials started to question the lot they’d been handed, facing poor financial prospects in particular, numerous Boomers publicly shut that down as lazy and entitled instead of taking a hard look at the issues. I hear that the Millennial response feels similarly harsh, but I see it as a call to older generations to really hear the issues and help us to solve them.

  9. Wow, the Money Diaries piece was so good. Thank you for bringing it to our attention.

    Happy holidays to you and your family. I love the idea of a NYE break, and hope it’s enjoyable for all.

  10. I haven’t even read the whole post. But I’m so excited to hear what you say about Nespresso. I’ve never been a coffee drinker, but as I strive to give up Diet Coke I’ve been exploring my options and got turned on to these machines when I enjoyed the one in our suite during a recent girls trip. Can’t wait for all your new content for the remainder of the year and into the new decade!

    1. I had one in my room when I went on a business trip to Pasadena and also fell in love and this fall a friend’s machine totally left me obsessed. I’ll likely have it go live this week!

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