Workday Reading

The Edition: No. 305

You have to pick the places you don’t walk away from. – Joan DidionA Book of Common Prayer (1977)

+ Tips for setting long-term goals in chaotic times.

+ My favorite winter boots because it’s damn cold outside.

+ How to get compensated when you’re bumped from an oversold flight.

+ LOFT has 50%-off sale items. This amazing floral dress (petite/tall) costs <$15.

+ Can these habits keep you energized through the afternoon?

+ For body acne, try this Black Jelly from Truly. Clears right up.

+ At-home glosses keep your hair color fresh. (This one is my favorite.)

+ Nice Weekend Outfit: Ponte pants + Speckled crewneck + D’Orsay flats

+ You can make any day the best day of the year.

+ Eloquii is having a sale on sale. This tulip dress is great for NYE or a wedding.

+ The 50 Most Popular Recipes from NYT Cooking.

+ This discounted Anthropologie shelf is perfect for a kitchen or bath.

+ How to overcome dating fatigue, because the struggle is real.

+ I need new brown boots: I’m torn between these and these.

+ The best pants for someone who is in-between sizes. (These are my choice.)

+ My favorite work out top (tall and plus) is on post-holiday sale.

Long Reads. This was one of the craziest stories I read this year.  I read the whole thing with my jaw fully dropped like a 1940s cartoon character.  It’s the story of how eBay executives tried to destroy the lives of a couple over their newsletter.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Everett/Shutterstock
Joan Didion, circa 1977

This week, we said goodbye to one of my literary heroes, Joan Didion.  I was 20 the first time I read a piece written by Joan.  And Some Dreamers of the Golden Dream hooked me from the first sentence.  I still read it when I have writer’s block or when I’m feeling down.  And every time I do, I’m write back in my college apartment, sitting in a big purple chair with fabric like a beach towel, thinking, “Holy S**t, what is this?”

I was never the same again.

Most Didion-philes profess that The White Album is her best work.  But for me, it will always be Slouching Towards Bethlehem.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Belle,

    Would you consider a post/round-up/request for reader comments about at-home hair straightening treatments? I am considering Keratin Salon Direct (see keratinsalondirect DOT com). Thanks!

    December 28, 2021/Reply
    • Belle says:

      My hair is stick straight, so I wouldn’t have a way to test this.

      December 28, 2021/Reply
  2. MM says:

    Oh my GOD that long read.

    December 28, 2021/Reply
  3. Hh says:

    That long read…that is NUTS.

    December 28, 2021/Reply
  4. Julianna says:

    Long time reader, first time commenting. I read Slouching Towards Bethlehem after something you said about it on the blog (what, exactly, I don’t remember). I read Some Dreamers in total disbelief. I started practicing law (insurance defense) in San Bernardino in 1996. At the time, Arthwell Hayton was conducting mandatory settlement conferences at the Victorville courthouse. I was in my first year or two of practice and was sent up to Victorville for a settlement conference in a fender-bender, soft tissue injury case—with Mr. Hayton. The insurer was holding fast, wouldn’t put any additional money on the table. I recall vividly Mr. Hayton telling me I surely had “the milk of human kindness running in my veins,”and responding that it wasn’t my money. I had no clue about his past until I read Ms. Didion’s essay 20+ years later. Weirdest feeling ever to have interacted with one of the featured players in such a sordid story.

    December 28, 2021/Reply
  5. Catherine says:

    Are all tall boots officially trendy again? Or just specific styles? (I’ve definitely seen more people wearing flat or low-heeled tall boots, but no one really wearing high, thinner heeled pairs, in my neck of the woods.

    I’d love to read advice on how to rejuvenate the old pairs that have been sitting in the back of my closet!

    December 28, 2021/Reply
    • sarah says:

      +1 to this. I kept my knee high, 2″ block heeled black boots that I wore over tights to the office with skirts. But I haven’t worn them in a few years. Hmmmm. Maybe that’s because of the pandemic rather than my ability to realize they were not cool. Anyway, I’d love to hear what’s what on boots these days.

      December 29, 2021/Reply
    • KLC says:

      It may not be the trendiest (ha), but I have always worn my tall boots with skirts! I keep my short booties for pants typically. But, I do live in Minnesota… so we try to keep our legs as covered as possible.

      December 31, 2021/Reply
  6. Jules says:

    Thanks for sharing that long read. Admittedly I’m usually too impatient for long articles but this one was captivating!

    December 29, 2021/Reply