True Confessions

True Confessions of a Chicago Girl's Homecoming

Fight it if you must, but here's a couple of the things that I've found to be unavoidable. 
Maybe it's just me?

1. You will visit your parents house in the burbs and you will hit traffic coming from O'Hare.
2. You will bump into people from high school who suddenly speak to you because you "work in fashion" now. Um hi?
3. You will find your local Target not up to speed with the Super Target you frequent in the new city you live in.
4. You will wear supersize sunglasses on Wacker Dr. just to see if someone mistakes you for a celebrity. Futile but fun.
5. You will walk into a bar and see several of your ex boyfriends. They will look the same way you left them.
6. You will decide karaoke is a great idea on a Wednesday night after dabbling in sangria.
7. You will debate running for Mayor for a solid 48 hours. I mean-- who'd be the competition?
8. You friends will ask you if certain blog posts are about this person or that one.
9. You will deny all of #8's accusations.
10. You will revel in the joy of NOT having to use GPS everywhere you go. You know the backroads for a change.
11. You will go to brunch and be oddly insulted that here it only lasts an hour. Brunch is all day affair.
12. You get tired of explaining what exactly you do for a living so you just start making stuff up. Commercial airline pilot? Sure. Future Mayor? Please read #7.
13. You'll wish you could take Lake Shore Drive home with you. Best running path around.
14. You will get told that there's a two hour wait at your favorite restaurant until--oh wait--your ex boyfriend is the manager? Make that two minutes.
15. You'll make a tiny schedule so you can see all the people you love. Some people you see may even surprise you.
16. You will just show up at your best friend's house when she doesn't answer your texts in a timely manner. Now she has to decide on a coffee date time.
17. You will regale the town of Chicago with tales of your early twenties. They won't listen but you and your friends will fancy yourselves legends in your own right.
18. You will yell "Go Pack Go" to every yellow and green comrade you find on the streets.
19. This will embarrass all your friends who cheer for the Bears. Which is everyone you know.
20. You will wear your pink Rodgers Jersey to Sunday's game and repeat #18.

Go Pack Go. It's good to be home.




Let it Byrne

"Jesus Christ! Do you even know when Christ comes?!"

Welcome to my family.

When people ask me why I am how I am-- cool and calm one minute and then full of fiery passion the next-- I point to the city of Manhattan. I was raised by an irish clan of dysfunction, excess, perseverance, and unconditional love. I was raised by New Yorkers. For better or worse, I am the direct descendant of a legacy that began long ago in a high rise on a tiny island. It is funny how a stroll down memory lane can give you a new perspective on the future.

Walking down city sidewalks the morning of Christmas Eve, my father began to show me the intricacies of the buildings he built with his hands, the beautiful marriage of construction and architecture. His skyscrapers are my new line of sunglasses. For the first time, I looked at his passion with genuine curiosity instead of the rolling of my green eyes.  For the first time I saw the great strides a couple of siblings took from the projects of Manhattan. You don't get to where they are by being nice--you get there by a determination that burns blood. 

During dinner one of my uncles turned to me and said, "We have the best family in the world. Because of this..." he stated as he motioned to the twenty people surrounding the dinner table. 

"We keep it together, we stay grounded. And once a year we don't make excuses. We come together."

That hit something in me that I locked up a while ago. I looked around the table to the people who have helped raise me. And I say people, because when you're irish the people who raise you are not excluded to just the parents. When you're irish you're raised by a community, a small town that can't be found on a map. You're raised by uncles, aunts, best friends, older cousins, and of course the wisest of Grandparents. You're raised by a proud history that you won't find in any book. You're raised off of a family crest and what your last name stands for. 

In a world and a season where material objects become so sought after, it was refreshing to drink a glass of humility this Christmas. God knows I need it once in a while. On Christmas Eve, as I held my little cousin (who was delighted with my new nail polish), I realized I had graduated to the teaching generation who would help raise the future generations in my family. You come to realize that you're part of a new community--you're no longer at the kids table. You've been invited to the adult room, and if there's a spot, you might even be offered a seat. 

No family is perfect. But if once a year you make no excuses and you come together-- you'll be surprised what you'll learn about yourself sitting around the table. Because when the room is full of laughter, shouting, and celebratory toasts, this girl knows she's finally home. Who knew that after a year of traveling the world, the thing I was looking for could be found at the corner of 3rd Ave & 64th St.

Merry Christmas friends.




My December Diary

The holidays come with a list of questions you'd rather not answer. Your family and friends mean well, but without a doubt these have been a few of my former favorites...

"So have you finally gotten a real job?"
"So, he still didn't propose...." 
"So, you live at home still?"
"So, you stopped going to the gym?

Or you're at Target and the sales associate asks you where your boyfriend is so he can help you carry your new tree to the cashier. Sorry Sean, but you see this red shopping cart here? This is my boyfriend. I'm wearing Under Armor sneakers here buddy--a woman on a mission.

Full disclosure, I was tempted to grab the closest male to me, smile and say, "Oh honey can you grab this?" in a ridiculous effort to avoid the judgmental look I got from Sean. My reply of naming my shopping cart as my significant other didn't sit well with him as he went on to ask,

"You gonna kiss that under the mistletoe?"

I'm sorry are you a Target employee or a life coach? I need a pre lit Christmas tree not a life lesson. Needless to say I booked it out of there after my jaw dropped to the floor. But of course, Sean's words were set in my mind. The holidays are, after all, a time for love to be celebrated. But what happens when that love is on a shelf for a later date? Or the love you had has faded? Or you don't really know what's going on, but you're getting by day by day? This is my first Christmas as a single woman in seven years and I don't have the answers to these questions. I thought I did. I once fancied myself to be wise. And yet this year I'm looking up to the big guy with a smile, "Touche God. Touche." He sure knows how to ground me.

When my friends and I were young girls, I was constantly voted most likely to be the first to get engaged. It helped that I also dated men for what seemed like eons. I was a serial monogamous dater. My first dates always turned into four years. Or at least that's what my friends will tell you.

Having a breakup, or "going on a break" is interesting for lack of a better word. Having a breakup, dealing with judgey Target employees, and feeling like you fucked up your life plan? Even more interesting.

My favorite is when people just come out and say,

"Oh so your relationship isn't on Facebook anymore...why is that? Sorry just happened to notice."

Oh did you? Because when you say that I hear,

"So I heard a rumor about you guys breaking up, stalked your Facebook and 
came up with nothing. Care to share?"

This usually gives me a good laugh because I'm a blogger. I'm the one person that if I cared to share, I assure you, I would. If I thought you had a right to know, you would have been the first phone call. And yet you weren't. So doesn't that say something without coming out and stating the obvious?

It's none (and by none I mean a grand total of ZERO) of your business. Same goes for you Sean.

I love the people I love and for me that is enough. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise this holiday season. Don't let anyone (not even the Seans of the world) make you feel less important because you aren't in love, engaged, or in a relationship. Because come NYE if you're laughing with your friends and spilling champagne all over your dress...you're right where you should be. You're with the people who love you no matter what, and that's what matters this holiday season. Celebrating the love you were given.

We need to stop applying childish timelines to our adult lives. I promise you, it will never match up. What we need is to push our shopping carts proudly to the check out aisle. Pre-lit trees and all. If we need to get a little creative getting it up the stairs to our walkup apartment- so be it. Because I'm working with the life and the love I was given, not the one out of a fairytale. 

I share tidbits of my life because I believe there is someone out there feeling the same way, but afraid to give mere thoughts a platform. This is why I blog. I blog to say, hey--me too. 

You're not alone. And you're going to be just fine.

Let's celebrate December.




Flipped: A Six Month Update

"...just know you're not alone, 
cause I'm gonna make this place your home..."

Six months ago I packed my bags and moved to a new part of the country. I didn't know anyone where I was going (for the most part) and I had taken a new job with an even newer company. Writing this I'm like wow this sounds horrifying. And yet....It has been the best decision I've ever made.

Of course I've had nights where I cried for the comforts of an old friend, familiar roads, and the beautiful little town that raised me. But moving away from the unknown, especially when you're a twenty-something, is something I would tell everyone to try. I know home is warm and snug--but there's a whole world out there just waiting for you. 

Moving to my new city has made me grow in ways I didn't even know needed a growth spurt. But they did. I did. My life now is a complete flip from what it was six months ago. And that's ok. When we resist change (for better or worse) we're refusing to turn to the next page. So how can we ever read the next chapter? 

Six months ago I didn't know the value in having new friends around my table, how to bake, or the patience required when building new furniture. It takes awhile for a place to become a home, which can be hard. I'm someone who wants to walk in the room already having friends, or at least I was six months ago. I've never minded making new friends, but it requires a lot of work. When I first moved here I'd joke with my Chicago friends that I was going on more friend "first dates" than I ever have in my life. But let me tell you--these days I'm a first date champ. The hard work eventually pays off.

This new adventure has inspired me to keep up my newness momentum. In October I made a promise to myself. From now till I'm merely words on a page, I'm going to travel somewhere I've never been before. I'm going to keep on exploring, learning and growing. In the words of Miley, I simple can't stop nor won't stop.

Friends ask me all the time when I'll move back home and I say, "What's the rush?" 

This life is not about having the same people to dinner every night. It's about learning a new someone's story and sharing your own. Even better...it's about creating your own. What stories will you have to tell the next generation? What wisdom? I have become a firm advocate in nights with only the radio on, good food, and plenty of laughter. This is the chapter of my life where I'm on an endless adventure, making new friends and forging new paths along the way. 

A good friend asked me this past week, "How do you stay so motivated and upbeat all the time?"

I almost replied with, "Well I'm a really good actress. Surprise!" But his question got me thinking. What keeps me going? What's made me stay in a new place and not pack up my bags for home? Then, out of nowhere--I found it. 

"I try not to give myself any other option."

And this is no solo effort. I'm as good as the people I surround myself with. Their inspiration sparks mine and together we push one another along. Being a twenty-something in a new city is not easy. But being a twenty-something with great friends in a new place? Well that's pretty damn manageable.

So as the new year approaches us, think about your greatest moments of the one that just passed. What was your favorite day? Who did you love? When did you suddenly see an adult in the mirror looking back at you? Where did you go? Where did you not go, forget to say, or pushed off doing? Because it's about to be a brand new year. And if you ask me, I say go and do it all. 
Don't give yourself any other option.




24 Beliefs

I was asked the other day what I believed in these days. Although I am not a devoted religious person, I welcomed the question. And so, during a long walk down Lakeshore Drive I began to think about what I have come to truly value in my few years on earth. What made my heart glow? What made me genuinely smile? What have I learned, most likely the hard way? Well here's what I've found.

1. I believe in dinner parties. 
2. I believe in candles at the dinner table and meals full of little plates for tasting and sharing. 
3. I believe in lights that flicker because those have always resonated with me. 
4. I believe the best conversations happen during car rides or walks, preferably on Lakeshore Drive.  
5. I believe in finding the quiet moments when it's me, a notebook, and some strong espresso. 
6. I believe in waking up with the sun... see #5.
7. I believe that if I can't feel the music then it isn't loud enough. 
8. I believe in the colors tiffany blue and silver because it reminds me that the clouds that darken a blue sky can offer a silver lining.
9. I believe in running in the rain after a night of drinking. You'd be surprised how often this happens. Apparently I only drink when it's about to storm.
10. I believe in offering to pay. We all work hard for our money. Being entitled because you feel it's old fashion is just that....old fashioned. It's 2013.
11. I believe in looking at the person you're talking to. I love looking into the eyes of friends, both new and old. That's where our narratives are--where the true text is.
12. I believe in calling people. Texting is great but there's no mistaking someone's tone when you listen rather than read.
13. I believe in throwing your front door open. Unplanned nights where you meet the dawn because you couldn't stop sharing your story or listening to theirs is why we're here. 
14. I believe that if you're a writer, you should read the works of writers who are better than you. Don't have time? See #6.
15. I believe in marathons, triathlons, and pushing the limits on the mind. Anyone who has accomplished these feats will be the first to tell you, it's an obstacle of mental state, not physical health.
16. I believe in paying it forward. Or at least trying to. For a literal perspective see #10.
17. I believe that when I have something to say to you, I'm going to say it. For better or worse, I'm going to just say it. I may or may not use a hash-tag. #dealwithit
18. I believe in random texts that make me smile. These are my favorite. Keep 'em coming.
19. I believe in writing to music. I usually have my hair in a crazy state and pretend to be a linguistic Beethoven. Which leads to....
20. I believe in myself. I can and will get what I want out of life. All of us will. I don't believe in holding back. Games are for players--and I dislike both.
21. I believe in awkward moments where we are vulnerable. I have these multiples times a week. I like to think it builds character, or teaches me what not to do next time. Sometimes I take #17 very literal.
22. I believe in social media. Say what you want, but this platform is going to change the world. There are a TON of #20-ers that use this channel to their advantage.
23. I believe in brunch on Sundays with bottomless mimosas. I believe in staying there all day sharing stories and laughing with friends over the past week. This is where I reboot.
24. I believe in having a home. Everyone should have a place or a spot where the world stops. My spot is Wacker Dr. Some people go to church, temple, or whatever your fancy may be. When I want to feel my feet planted on the earth and feel like I belong...this is where you'll find me. On a bridge in the middle of a great city. Because lastly... I believe in building bridges.




The Pink Pants People

You know that moment in Devil Wears Prada when Andy and Miranda pull up to a fashion show in Paris and Miranda says to Andy, 

"Oh, don't be ridiculous. Andrea. Everybody wants this. Everybody wants to be us." 

And then Andy promptly jump out of the car and throws her work cell into a fountain.

My reaction was quite the opposite as our car pulled up to the Cipriani on 42nd St. for the 2013 Accessory Awards of America. If anything... I think I squeezed my work phone a little tighter. And I sure as hell stayed in the car. I actually kept waiting for security to scrutinize me and say, 

"You sure you belong here? Who the hell is KB?"

Walking into the black tie affair, surrounded by my fashion idols, I kept thinking back to a misfit blonde middle schooler, who, so desperate to fit in, bought a pair of pink corduroys from Abercrombie & Fitch. I've kept the pants as a reminder that daring to be different is what got me this far. Because needless to say those pink pants did not help me "fit in."

With Tory Burch casually talking to friends behind me, I kept telling myself to breathe in every moment. When I exchanged a conversation with Hamish Bowles (Intl Editor of Vogue) I thought surely I had actually been hit by a cab and this was my heaven. Three years ago I was a pre-law student who knew she'd hate her life as a lawyer, but didn't know what else to do. Further back than that I was a girl from the neighborhood of Queens, who'd probably marry a guy from the neighborhood, have a few kids, and live out my life on Woodhaven Blvd. I had spent most of my childhood peering at life through windows, and suddenly I was inside the room, with a seat at the table.

Hamish & Me

The ACE Awards reignited a fire in me that I had felt burning out. The past three months have not been easy. They've been full of painful truths, pushing the limits, and learning how to walk in heels over a cobblestone path. I still trip from time to time, but I am no longer afraid that there might not be someone to catch me. I had my chin hit the pavement a few months ago and I learned how to get back up. Scars, stitches, and all.

I love sitting around a table of friends (old & new) sharing our truths, discoveries, and goals. But with these conversations comes a veil of caution, because to do and say how we really feel takes a level of bravery that most people choose to forego. We choose denim over pink corduroys, or we buy the pink pants for all the wrong reasons.

As I sat tables away from Steve Madden, Tommy Hilfigher, and Rebecca Minkoff, I couldn't help but realize--these people I've idolized are no different than myself. The future belongs to the brave ones. The people I look up to made a choice. They wore pink pants.

Failure is horrifying but so is never having tried. Easy to type but hard to live by. I have always strove for a perfection that I now realize is a product of my overactive imagination. And yet at one point in my life, I let someone tell me I was less than what I was made to be. I chose a false sense of success instead of the bravery in letting oneself fail. For it is through failures and cut open chins that I am seeing the world with eyes I thought I had lost. I am seeing myself in the mirror and I've slipped back into my corduroys. Denim is overrated.

One day I hope to have a daughter (in the far, far, FAR future). I hope to sit with her one day in the kitchen of our New York high rise and tell her about the months her mother spent putting herself back together. I will tell her about nights lit by the candles of friends, mornings that insisted to be met, and car rides with her aunts where we talked and sang. I will tell her about the movement I walked up the stairs of the Cipriani on 42nd St. I will tell her to never give up on anything you love.

I will tell her that honestly, I want to see her be brave. Because I was brave with her in mind.  I pushed on in a denim dazed world. I imagine if she's anything like me, she'll roll her eyes and go off to call her boyfriend. But one day she'll have to show the world how big her brave is--and I'll have my pink corduroys in a bin in the basement. Just waiting to come back out.




The Rebuttal

This evening, a good friend sent me the link to a well written but highly outlandish blog post. Now from one blogger to another, I too, struggle with what topics are acceptable for the internet ocean, where's the fine line? Usually the possibility of sounding like an ignorant ass keeps me from writing every little thing that pops into my head. But what do I know, Matt Forney? 

I'm only a confident woman.

Matt Forney recently wrote a blog post which lobbied against young women having a vote of confidence. Or in other words- a fighting chance in the society we live in. Now, for those of you that know me, reading this was hard to swallow. Not only am I sometimes too confident (dare I say it) but I also take great pride in my emotional and financial independence. I have never thought and will continue to neglect the assumed opinion of men who feel that these qualities make me a "man with a vagina." Because until a man can give birth... I don't feel like that's a valid call out Mr. Forney.

According to Matt Forney the following are the main flaws in today's modern woman:

1. Most girls have done nothing to deserve self esteem.

2. Insecurity is integral to femininity.

3. Women don't want to have high self esteem.

So, I shall respond in kind.

1. The very idea of SELF-esteem is that it comes from within. One does not have to earn an organ upon birth, and the same goes for feeling good about yourself. Do I refuse to acknowledge that we live in a society that harps on the fairy tale notion that each of us in unique and in Matt's words, "schpecial?" No. This is 100% true.  But in turn, his same argument that most women don't contribute much to society can be held true for men. After all, I don't see very many Hilary Clintons or Ghandis on a daily basis. You know why? Not everyone is going to be successful. Actually- most of us won't be. But that's not a gender issue, that's a flaw within the American people, where belly aching and bravado count as a contribution.

2. I don't think any boyfriend I've ever had has said to me, "You know KB... you're not very feminine." Maybe I should call each of them up and do a double check. As a woman, I believe and preach that femininity is an ever evolving idea. There is no way of measuring femininity and no real benchmark for what a feminine standard is. Insecurity is a quality derived from lack of confidence...not getting your period once a month. Saying insecurity is integral to femininity is the same as saying my breasts make me a woman. Guess what-- I know a handful of breast cancer survivors that would love to educate you on femininity. And needing a man has nothing to do with it. Me being able to pay my bills, buy a car, travel, and support my lifestyle does not make me less of a woman. Rather it makes me a woman worth knowing.  To any man who would prefer me to be insecure so he can appreciate my femininity, I say to him that Target sells doormats that don't require dinner and a show.

3. Women don't want to have high self esteem. Well...thanks for letting me know Matt! This one made me laugh, as this chauvinistic nature of telling women what they should want is exactly what makes you less of a man. You can ask every ex boyfriend of mine that I was not "crying out for a man who will wound [my] self esteem." Typically I break up with them...so maybe I missed the memo at the last "Women Wanting Wounds" conference.  When a man is disrespectful to me I give them a piece of my mind--not a piece of my heart.

Still arguing his case for women wanting wounds, he goes on to point out that several popular female artists sing songs complaining about men and heartbreak. OK Matt... but does this cast a negative light on men or women? Billy Joel, Van Morrison, and Elvis wrote about women... so I'm not really following this one. I could go on a tirade on what this says about male rap artists-but I digress.

The bottom line is that self esteem is not an attack on femininity.  It is taking a traditional notion and making it progressive. Having a self worth does not make me less of a feminine woman, just like bravado does not make you a masculine man.  I think it is time my fellow writer, that you analyze masculinity as much as you have femininity. Because I can assure you that as a woman, I do not find belly aching and brazen bravado to be very attractive. I find those qualities to be the problem and you are not a part of the solution.

I'm a woman who has made a life for herself, runs a business, and prefers to walk in stilettos. 

If this makes me "un-feminine" in the eyes of mankind...
well then I hope the men of America have great jobs. 
Because me needing you would be pretty damn expensive.




In a Show Me State of Mind

But if the bright lights don't receive you...
Well, turn yourself around and come on home.

It's funny how sometimes we don't realize how broken we are. And then, unexpectedly someone reaches out, puts their hands on you, and says, "Tell me everything." That's what happened to me last week. I received a phone call from a friend I have not spoken to in a long time. And no--this was not an ex boyfriend. They called out of nowhere, heard my voice, took a breath and said, 
"Kris...tell me every god damn word of it."  

And so I did. 

I love my memory. I love the sepia tint my mind gives the movie clips that flicker across my eyelids. I love the words I use to share my stories, dipping my tongue in ink as I recount moments that made my heart soar. But lately words have failed me and I've been left to watch with wide eyes for actions in the present. The memory is a beautiful and wicked thing, for it casts a biased veil on the now. You see the pages of what has been done instead of what will be...and you lose yourself in rereading books that have been shelved.

I will not deny that I'm a romantic. I live for the moments where my heart is next to the person who was meant to take care of it.  Because that's what this life is about...finding someone who loves your weird. For me, that weird is burying my head in a laptop and typing endlessly until my fingers plead for rest. My weird is staying up late and painting portraits in letters instead of brushstrokes. My weird has always been centered around the words coming out of a person's mouth. But words can travel by pencil, paint, or pen. Words have a way of slipping through the cracks in the movie theater called memory.

Growing up I would always promise my Dad that I'd get a college scholarship. This was usually my way of convincing him to give me the money he'd use for tuition so that I could buy a prom dress. My Dad is a smart guy sometimes, as his reply was always the same...

"I'm from the Show Me state...so don't say it...show it."

For the record, my father is not from Missouri. But he's not one to turn down a good quote due to birthplace. Lately those words have been pulsing in my ears. Show me. What a powerful demand, and an aggressive challenge to pose to someone.  Yet, it's validity in the world we live in could not ring truer or more necessary. It is easy, effortless even, to put letters and sounds in a pretty picket fence sentence. It is hard, grueling even, to show and act on the words we sprinkle on the ground everyday. When we act, we illustrate ownership over the words we say because we are bringing them to life. 

Actions are the life providing organs to words.  Actions are the lungs, heart, and brain, pumping blood into something once lifeless-and now ripe with color and promise.

So I propose a challenge to each of you and most importantly to myself.
Do something this week that gives your thoughts a heartbeat. 
Do something that will provide a memory without words and only acts.

I can't promise you perfection, but I can promise you that a soul thrives better on actions, 
than it does an alphabet.




My Answer to Your Question

Being in your mid twenties means one question suddenly needs an answer.

1. When are you getting married?

Once a week I am asked about when I intend to marry. I find this comical, as according to me this usually involves two people, not just an executive decision to go get hitched. Asking me when I'm getting married has become like the habitual texts from my mother about when I'm getting my flu shot. The answer to both is the same: When I get around to it, but may I tell you about my flourishing career?

I've always been harboring a feminist fugitive in my soul. My last name means something to me. The place in the fashion industry I have begun carving out for myself carries my maiden name, the last name I'm known by and has even prompted by nickname, KB. My father grew up in the projects of Manhattan and has since made a name for himself in the construction industry. Men never have to worry about the idea of a name change-- for better or worse--the name you have is the one you curate for the rest of your life. For women, it is the debate between us and the elephant in the room. Both genders are told to "make a name for themselves" and both are fully capable. But what happens when one gender is expected to change that name in their professional prime? I don't have the answer, but it is a topic that interests me.

When I was asked the other day about my plans for walking down the aisle, I replied quite bluntly. I have too many things do and accomplish being KB, before I even think about becoming somebody else.  Perhaps I come across as selfish in saying this, but I'd rather be honest than pretend that making my family name into something infamous doesn't mean anything to me at all. Quite honestly- it means everything.

I have been blessed to be surrounded by strong and inspirational women. The conversations my close friends and I have make me truly secure in believing we are the future chiefs of this great country. There is a generation of women emerging that have such great intellect, that when paired with our millennial momentum, we are quite unstoppable. This is what makes me get out of bed every morning. The notion that I am forging a future that I was told three years ago would never happen. 

One day I do fancy the idea of sharing my life with someone else and one day I will most likely share his last name. But now? Now I'm creating myself. Now I'm scribbling notes on napkins and spending mornings in coffee shops. Now I'm hosting wine festivals where we talk about the world and watch documentaries. That's my now. 

If there is one thing I will preach about is that we all need to do what makes each of us happy. I am trying to live this day by day. If that's getting married, I will be at your wedding sending all my love and well wishes. If that's traveling the world, I expect post cards from every city you conquer. And if that's starting a novel in a coffee shop, then I think I will be drinking an unhealthy amount of espresso. 

Let us stop comparing and start creating. 
You want to get married? You go girl. You don't? You go girl. 

For me, my marital status has nothing to do with my level of individual success. My marital status will do this and this alone; it will tell the world that I love another person enough to walk in stride with them for the rest of my life. Everyone sees success in a different pantone. There is no right paint chip. For my friends who have found that person, I applaud you. For my friends still searching--put down the treasure map and let yourself be the X. The world is at our feet, truly ours for the taking-- reach out and grab it. The world around us was created and reinvented by the same people you see at the grocery store. It's not rocket science, it's called never giving up.

Take your name, whether maiden or married, and make something of it.  Single, married, widowed, divorce...there is no check this box on a job application.  Whatever we do in this life, we must ensure that we retain our personal goals. Because at the end of this runway, I've been told there's a moment where you ask yourself what you did. For me... my dream is for KB to mean something more than just a childhood toy store.

So to answer the question that I get asked so frequently (once & for all)...
 I will get married when I am asked by a great man who doesn't mind having a writer for a wife. 
Lord help him.




The Climber

In the midst of hardship, I have always found great comfort in my K coffee cup and a blinking cursor to encourage my newest musings. A good friend of mine during lunch today suggested I get back to the basics. Back to the quite literal, A-B-C's of my life.

They say that your life will never end up quite like you had planned. What they neglect to say is that in a mere matter of months...everything will change. Within months of unforgiving editing, you will be presented with the greatest obstacle. It is not fear, it is not love, it is not sadness. It is oneself. It is the mountain that illustrates everything you will become and does not attempt to hide any unsavory reality.

According to ole faithful (google), a mountain is a large natural elevation of the earth's surface rising abruptly from the surrounding level.

According to me, a mountain is a vertical journey from which you may only enjoy the sun's warmth from the top. Until you reach the top, you will remain in the cold, damp shadows of those who have tried to accomplish great things and have fallen along the way.

While I have the utmost respect for google, I must admit I prefer my definition. Yet nowhere in either one does it mention mountains being movable earthly masses. They are permanent road blockers that stand erect without mercy. They are the natural pillars that suggest there is something untapped in each of us, a potential so easily forgotten that we simply learn to live in the dark. And it is with this idea that I had a conversation with a dear friend. My friend suggested that we are a generation that can move mountains. Ever since hearing this, and in addition to my current perspective, I  have found myself wishing I was strong enough to move them all out of my way. Every mountain pushed off to the side. Imagine how easy life would become if with every obstacle you had an option, push this out of your way and never fail, or acknowledge the unapologetic mountain that dares you to climb.

On this southern September evening in the early days of fall, I want to write and put pen to paper that you will see me climb. Along the way I will bleed, I will fall, and most certainly, I will think about giving up at least once every day. But I am done moving mountains. Now...I want to open my mind and maybe yours to a new idea. Let's stop moving mountains and put on a harness.

In the midst of hardship we learn more about ourselves than any other day in paradise. 

And today? 

I've learned I'm not a mover... I'm a climber.




Raw & Rare

"...and she's been living on the highest shelf..."
-Vance Joy's Riptide

Everyone right now is loving the Avicii song, "Wake Me Up." I've joined the fan club, and have to admit that during my in house impromptu dance parties- it's been playing on repeat, with a pop of Vance Joy. Every word they sing speaks to this exact moment in my life, a point where the page is scribbles and completely nonsensical.  The Fall season doesn't offer us mere mortals sneak previews- only opening nights. Yet another thing I seemed to have forgotten about. Life fail.

Lately I've been told that this is the best part of my life. But I'm still trying to understand what is so enjoyable about being at an age where I have to learn how to cook. My metabolism has completely bailed on me and I am now faced with the reality that becoming a grown up, at least a real one, actually started yesterday and doesn't involve Chipotle. Because while I love being a twenty something... I really hate cooking.

I've been thinking a lot recently about how this "best part of my life" is my story. I think that's why subconsciously I keep this blog going. So my fellow twenty somethings have something to read that isn't a BuzzFeed article, and maybe something they can relate to. Being a twenty something is hard and exhausting. But it is making for one great story, and everyone is born a natural story teller. It's just hard sometimes to find the right words.

People say it's important to have a great "how he proposed" story, because you're going to be reciting that sonnet the rest of your life. However, I beg to differ. I would argue it's all in how you tell it. I can make a story about my job just as interesting. After all, man's innate talent since the beginning of time has been story telling. Every conversation is a chapter, a paragraph, or if you're me a gif, that you will then go on and express to the next person. We connect through communication. It's basic and something I could never survive without. When me and my girlfriends have a wine and sushi night, or an evening parading down the city streets in stilettos- we are story telling the past week, sharing and editing for the next time we go around and recite the goings on in our lives.

What happens to us is only half of what happens. 

The memory, the piece we take away is in how we remember it and then share it.

I guess that's why music has been so vital to me, offering me a stable lifeline when there are no words of my own to say. Why else do you think us girls have dance parties in tiny city living rooms?
Being a twenty something young professional is like being a living and breathing science project that God is entering into a contest. This makes me nervous due to the fact that as a child I only ever received honorable mention. Stupid science fair.

I just want to be cool like Lana Del Ray. There I said it.

Something we can learn from the artists is that when we're done speaking, we need to act. When letters fail to form words, that's my favorite moment to look at what that person does next. The body tells the best story I have ever heard. The universal human experience of emotion, success, failure, and perseverance. Oh, and going to work even on the days you don't want to.

Usually when I get a new book, I go straight to the end and read the last chapter. My impatient nature and need to be in control make it nearly impossible to just sit back and wait.  But I'm ready to commit to something new. I'm ready to have a blank page and see what words appear.

After all, the Fall season has only just begun. Who knows what's in store once the leaves start to fall.




Great Expectations

...And some nights are full of reflection, lit candles, and a symphony of sound...

When I departed from my suburban bubble for college, I expected a world of revolution to greet me at the ivy gates.  The movie, Dead Poets Society had changed my life, and I so longed for a world full of fellow book worms, eager to unpack the meanings behind ancient words. And so on a clear night in Bloomington, my friends and I sprawled out against the quad's green grass. Taking in the stars, everything seemed to glitter with intellect, and us, so young, vivacious, and curious--we wanted to gobble up every bite of the night.

My first day of college classes I waited for someone to shout, "My Captain, My Captain," but instead I was met with girls in Daisy Dukes and boys too hungover from their first alcoholic acquaintance. I felt let down and wondered why movies would have painted such an impossible picture. By the weekend I would join their ranks and begin the acceptance that maybe I just had great expectations. College was an academic amusement park, not a pavilion resounding a scholastic symphony. What once glittered with intellect, was suddenly dulled with monotony.

I feel that now in my mid twenties, the life I had imagined is constantly evolving. My great expectations are altered daily and if I want my expectations met, well I'm the one in charge of that. Much like college, the working world is not like the movies. There is no Michael Scott, Leslie Knope, or Meredith Grey. There are simply real people who try and do the best they can, while trying not to become burnt out.

We, the millennials, grew up thinking that what we did mattered. And while it does matter, it is a humbling experience to acknowledge that it does not matter yet. We are still embarking on the journey of finding ourselves and our true calling in this sea of excel sheets, travel expenses, and happy hours. We're full of great expectations and an even greater optimism.

So while no one ever stood on their desks in college, I can assure you, that though it might be years later in an office...you will see me on mine. For we must continually push ourselves to see life through another view. Whether it's from your window or the sidewalk, one's viewpoint must become flexible through our manifested culture if we are to show the world what we have to offer. We must be agents of change and catalysts for progress.

The night before leaving for college, I watched Dead Poets Society, and I vowed to always remember this quote. For too easily we can lose sight of the end goal, or worse...we can lose hope.

"No matter what any body tells you, words and ideas can change the world."

Dead Poets Society debuted in 1989...and I don't believe in coincidence.

Let's set sail.

My captain, my captain...



Paging Dr. Fashion

Recently I've been getting a lot of emails from readers asking me what I do for a living. 
Well friends, allow me to explain.

You know the movie Devil Wears Prada? People, especially in my industry, could quote that movie backwards and forwards. My favorite line is when Nigel asks if someone ate an onion bagel. I always mutter to myself, while also probably eating one,

Um duh Nigel. There's no Lysol spray for onion bagels. And that person eating the bagel? 
That's me. It's always me.

In the fashion industry, buyers are the group of fashionites who get looked to quite often. Being a buyer myself, I can speak to this with some runway credentials. Buyers are the doctors of fashion. We help designers birth new styles or ideas, and we keep those styles thriving and healthy throughout their lifetime. Don't believe me? Walk into any buying office on a Monday morning. On Monday mornings a buyer's office might as well be an operating room, where we are carefully analyzing what's working, what's not, and identifying what needs to be taken away, or in our world, cancelled. Our scalpel is a pencil and our chart's diagnosis is derived from a calculator. Buying is a form of surgery...and buyers are surgeons of style.

Fixing a bad business for us is like fixing a disease. It takes time and it's trial and error when it comes to presenting solutions. The worst part is that we have to wait and see if our efforts served us well. Often times weeks can go by before we can diagnose wayfarers as an opportunity or the worst idea second to corduroy pants.

When business is good, our schedule is similar to a doctor's without a flu season. It's calm, time allowing, and peaceful. Up until Christmas anyway...then you might as well be in the school nurse's office after a breakout of lice.

Essentially, our jobs are to pick out what is sold in the stores of the company a buyer works for. In the fashion retail industry this can be quite a challenge. The most important part being that you may have fabulous taste and style, but the only appetite that matters is that of our guest. What she/he likes, you now like, and you're off to hunting down the next best thing she/he will love.

The biggest goal of a buyer is to create that pig in the window. The item that turns a window shopper into a shopaholic.  If you do that--your surgery went well. This is the part of the fashion industry that gets my blood pumping. We are entirely reliant on the public and the public changes their mind once every fifteen minutes. This makes for an extremely fast-paced environment. Ever see a girl run in heels or a man sprint in loafers? They're probably buyers. Moving fast is part of our LinkedIn skill set. Go ahead...endorse me.

But the best part about being a buyer? You get to effect change in the world. As a buyer you learn to listen, learn, and react. You learn skills that benefit your real life as much as your life behind the desk. So if you're looking for something new and exciting...think about becoming a buyer.
And maybe take a jog in your pumps.




The Musician: Ryan Dunson

This is the starting line of a new segment from The Life of KB. For the next six weeks I will be interviewing bands, musicians, and artists to see how their individual style has been altered or created by their art.  After all, as much as fans flock to the lyrics and the brush strokes, they look to the person, the author of the art as a way of living--an innovative source to the alternative.

Two weeks ago, I met with Ryan Dunson, the lead singer of Rookie of the Year. For those of you who don't know this band, I personally encourage you to give them a listen. Ryan is ecstatic about the continuation of their sound and can't wait for their new album The Goodnight Moon Part II to drop August 13th. Before getting on the line with Ryan I found myself preemptively starstruck. Like...
What do I say? Are my questions pointless? Am I cool enough to talk with this guy? 

I've listened to Rookie of Year for years- so this interview is near to my heart and the teenaged chapter of my life. The moment Ryan and I started talking though, conversation flowed and we got into the details...what dictates a musician's style?

K: Before you were in a band or rather a well known musician, how would you have described your style?

R: I was actually pretty preppy in High school. I played sports so I always had my hair short. But, going into 11th and 12th grade, I began listening to more punk music and really got into that scene. Inspired by Radiohead, I started growing my hair long in the front and short in the back. When I got into bands like Juliana Theory and Amberlynn I loved how they looked. It's the same as how bands dress these days, but back then it was pretty revolutionary. I would ask bands after shows where they got their clothes from (H&M being a big one) and starting accessorizing with things like skinny ties. I tend to opt for the cheaper options of what's trending, so I shop a lot at TopMan and Forever21.

Also, my girlfriend at the time would always shop at Delia's, and in their shopping bags they would have random ads for online boutiques, so that became a big source of getting trendy clothes while still living in a small town.

K: When Rookie of the Year became popular, did you start to think more about your outward appearance and the image you were projecting?

R: I've always had a weird style, I mean I've had the same hairstyle now for seven years. But, as a band we definitely took the time before a tour to go and get good outfits. Usually we'd allow $2-3K to find some good pieces and try to get outfits at the same time so our look was cohesive.

K: Do you as a band ever discuss style then? Like what's your "look" going to be each night? 

R: Yeah, for example one night we'll be like, ok guys, tonight is ties, black pants or jeans, tucked in, versus not tucked in- we try to get everyone to match. 

K: Do you think your music channels you into looking/appearing a certain way?

R: For me, yes. People sometimes deny that fact and don't care about how they look and that works for them. In this industry it's wishy-washy and depends on what type of music. We're kind of indie pop, so we're going to look the part and look fancy. 

K: How did you get started in the music industry?

R: I was a promoter in my hometown and putting on shows that were getting decent crowds. I kept thinking I should have a band to open my shows, so in high school I got one started. There really wasn't much music-wise going on at home so I moved to Florida. There I joined a few tours, and began meeting more people in the industry. During the weekend I had nothing to do so I started to play acoustic, this is when Dashboard was starting to get big. One night, Brad Fischetti (from LFO) was at a show I was playing and asked if I wanted to sign with Warner Brothers (111), and things took off from there. 

K: What's the big idea behind the new album? What inspired it?

R: Well I went into the studio not knowing what to write about. I had been on and off with a girl for about four years, and we broke up right before I started writing songs for the new album. The record was recorded in Syracuse, NY, and I had no phone service. I wrote eight of the songs on the album there in Syracuse with nothing written before at all. Every song had the same theme and feeling, with the main focus being how you were feeling that day. This went on for 30 days with 2-3 days for each song. The album really captured a month of my life-like a time capsule.

K: Where do you see yourself in five years...dressing the same?

R: I'll probably dress the same way, but I'm pretty diverse. And as far as what I'll be doing...maybe get married. Yeah, get married and start a band with my wife.

I'm already excited for Ryan's album in five years. 
Everyone check out The Goodnight Moon Part II on August 13th!




Wedding Bells

No, no, the bells are not mine. Trust me- the blog post when THAT happens will make its way onto the Today Show and be read aloud by Matt Lauer. And that's just the engagement.

However that day is not today. Today I am dress deciding for a wedding I am attending this month. I've officially reached that point in my life where the human race has turned into a race down the aisle. Every other day on my Facebook there are newly engaged folks, married folks, and pregnant folks.
Bottom line...a lot of busy folks.

Wedding dress shopping when you're not the bride is serious business. You don't want to show up the bride's big day (unless you're not a fan of her and even then you really shouldn't) but you also don't want to be the frumpy one in all your friends' Instagram photos. When you're a guest, wedding wear should be something you'd wear to a trendy country club. Pretend they exist.

If the wedding is during the summer then I'd suggest something brightly colored, but black is always a wedding wear basic. The wedding I'm going to is in Boston during the month of August.  Also, the bride and groom are both military officers. Naturally, my mind went to three different places:
Conservative. Vintage. Pastels.  And this is what I came up with...

"Basically Marilyn Monroe and Jackie O. had a love child, "said my good friend A.J.

I get asked a lot as to why I always vote for dresses as the perfect wedding wear. My thoughts are if the bride is wearing a dress, then maybe you should too. Dresses are ultra feminine and I think femininity and a day celebrating love go hand in hand. Also, dresses allow for excellent dance moves without the constraints of pants or a pencil skirt. Weddings are more than a night of free drinks and food you wish was McDonalds. It's a day where love wins. And for me, I always celebrate a win in a dress.

Currently I'm stuck on which dress to wear and would love some feedback. Let me know your thoughts in the comments below! 




Love, Brakes, and Anastasia

Death isn't easy. In fact I find it to be the greatest obstacle that mankind dares to stare down. It is final, absolute, and non-negotiable. It goes against my instinctual, "where's the loop hole here" mentality. Problem fixers have a hard time with death. Because if it's one thing I hate-it's a problem I can't fix.

When I got the call last night that my Grandfather had passed on, the overwhelming grief and loss took my breath away. In an attempt to keep a clear head, I took off for a run. My m.o. when things get under my skin is to stay mobile. That's how I stay sane. If you're constantly in motion- then you can't be touched or bothered with the realities you'd rather not see. Driving, running, or just walking with purpose, I need to be active.  My friends who know me well know that it's hard for me to stop. And it is almost impossible to slam on the brakes. But I guess in a way that's what death is...the ultimate stop.
A screeching halt.

My grandfather was a tall and quiet man. He had a dry sense of humor and he could care less if you liked him. What you saw was what you got. It was from him that I learned the value in authenticity. It was also from him that I'd inherit my curly uncontrollable hair.

At the age of seventeen my Grandfather joined the Navy and embarked on the adventure of a lifetime. He traveled the world but crowned the Big Apple as his new home. When he met my Grandmother (who has since passed on), he knew he would never meet someone so vivacious or fast paced. With her, life would be dramatic but it would also never be boring. The two of them balanced each other in a beautiful way where love takes work. They illustrated to me how precious and rare it is to have found someone who takes one look and says, "Don't change a thing."

A favorite memory of him is when my grandparents bought their first makeshift computer. I say makeshift because it exclusively and only made greeting cards. Not having anything of the sort in my house, my eight year old self became captivated. I worked on it all day till I figured out how to maneuver every greeting card available. My Grandfather was not shy with praise. He taught me the belief of having to work for something. Even if that something was just a "Good job."

My Grandfather was a private man, so I won't be sharing much more. He was a great gentleman, who loved a woman with all his heart. This display of undying affection has set the bar pretty high in my personal life. And I owe much of my life's work (past, present and future) to my Grandparents. They helped raise a curly headed blonde who was convinced she was a kidnapped Princess. Clearly I watched too much Anastasia...yet another thing I owe to Grandma and Pa.

This post is for them. 

Have a glass of white wine for me in Heaven you two. 
I miss you both- but not as much as you two have missed one another.

Enjoy and be happy, you've waited long enough.




What's the Bubbly in Brunch?

Brunch is hands down my favorite meal. I could have brunch every day, three times a day, and never tire of its deliciousness or glamour. But what is it about brunch that makes it so elite to any other meal offered throughout the day? What's the sparkle in brunch, aside from my champagne mimosa? Writers before myself have tried unpacking its secret allure and I have to say I think they're on the right track. William Grimes of the New York Times proposes, "...brunch is cheerful, sociable, and enticing." And most importantly, "it is talk-compelling." These points are all valid, but for me, there is something else about brunch that adds a pinch more fun into my Sunday Funday. Brunch is our last claim over the weekend. Our final effort to push back the work week and live like Europeans, or rather, American celebrities. Brunch is the poor man's (or in this case woman's) two hour escape in what life would be like if every meal could cost $55 for two people. Oh the luxury.

After all, you don't show up to brunch wearing sweats. I would send you home. You show up wearing the trendy version of your Sunday best. I mean, it's not Easter, and cardigans should be kept to a minimum. You and your pals order mimosas and suddenly, for the next two to three hours, you may as well be Lauren Conrad brunching with Lo Bosworth at The Ivy. Same thing right?

I don't love brunch because I love breakfast food. I do enjoy eggs, but I can make those for way less than $24.00 at home. I make brunch a weekend must-have because of the conversations shared over sparkling OJ at eleven am. I like having somewhere to be on a Sunday, instead of just parking it on the couch. I brunch for the same reason we all do. To have some laughs over biscuits and bubbly, and to say adieu to the weekend in style. It's fun to get dressed up and relax on a cafe patio. Don't believe me?

Only seven days till Sunday friends- go and try it. 




Get Your Fest On

I have no idea how to be "boho chic" or look like I belong at Coachella. I was raised by New Yorkers, and my expertise is wearing black. But I am trying to broaden my style horizons... what's the next big thing and how can I wear it? We all think this. New trends can be scary, it's like getting braces. You know you look different and even when people pretend they don't notice-you know they do. When you wear an outfit outside of your comfy zone, in your head, you might as well look like this.

...and you think that was my Halloween costume? Nope.

No one wants that. So how does one gather the bravery to get festive with the likes of Vanessa Hudgens? Baby steps my friends. Festivals aren't all about looking like you're homeless. Trust me-there are other avenues. To start, try out some lace accents, free flowing silhouettes, and keeping it either neutral or extremely bold when it comes to your outfit's color palette.  You dress does not have to look like you made it yourself. Play with the some options you already have. I'm a big fan of long feminine maxis, paired with some iridescent jewels. Shoes? Throw on some wedges, bold heels, or rustic inspired booties. Festival wear is inspired by the natural world... so look around you. Inspiration can strike when you least expect it.

dress from Charming Charlie, necklace from Charming Charlie,
 shoes from Target (Prabal Gurung)

In the last precious weeks of summer--let's get festive.




Help Wanted

Life can throw you some curve balls. Trust me, I'm in a kickball league. Over a month ago, I moved to a new city and threw myself into every extra curricular club and activity I could find. I was the trending #royalbaby in every LinkedIn group and in the past month have introduced myself more times than I can count. Being the new girl in town is thrilling and horrific. There is the opportunity in reinventing yourself and the reality that your old friends are now a phone call away. Showing your authentic self to people you've just met is scary, because they're either going to love you, or think you're critically insane.

Like this... secretly... I totally do this...

It's all about timing. For instance, maybe you save a big freakout for when you and your new pals have been friends for around six months. Preferably longer, but hey- life happens. And boy has life happened to me recently. Between moving, having my car broken into, my things stolen, and not being able to drive my car for the past week... I have been left to rely on people I've known for less than a month.  Which when you are raised in a society where relying on anyone (like ever) is outwardly frowned upon, it's a real awkward adjustment to be asking for help. I kind of feel like this...

Only instead of poor...I'm car-less.

But sometimes people will surprise you. Much like the homeless man who jumped out from underneath the highway, people can make you jump back and say, "Ok really?"
Most recently though, the good in people has amazed me. Since I have been reverted to permit stage where I can only get around by way of a responsible adult, my newfound city friends have become my real life heros. Between a couple work friends answering my endless questions with a smile, my friends who have offered up their cars as chariots of long sequestered mobility, and my hometown homeboys who listen to my endless whining about not having a car-- I say to you that I am grateful. My friends near and far have been nothing but a perfect bra. Giving me a lift day in and day out, and a friendly push upward when absolutely necessary.

So, thank you friends. For listening to me, talking with me, and as of late, driving me around.  

To my new friends- thanks for the social life. And to my old friends, thanks for listening about my life.

I am one lucky gal. Broken car window and all.




Color Me Dasani

I love summer. It's a season where you can wear a highlighter dress and still need a neon lining. Bright colors produce bright smiles, and with Dasani's new line of tangy water enhancers (Dasani Drops) it's hard not to take a hint from the creative water family. After all, one must stay hydrated if we're to beat the heat down here in the South.

Fruit is not just a good summer snack these days. Outfit inspiration is everywhere. Ever look at an Instagram photo of chopped strawberries and blueberries and double tapped? Of course you have. Because pink and purple look great together.

Mixed Berry
tank from Zara, pencil skirt from J.Crew, shoes from Prabal Gurung for Target

These days the color yellow is no longer mellow. Yellow has been heightened to make a statement. It's back and better than ever--and will not be ignored. Keep your eyes on the runways this Fall because when life throws you lemons, the fashion gods make dye. 
Move over mint green! Scoot over coral- Yellow is the new IT girl.

Pineapple Coconut
dress from Francesca's, earrings from Houston, head wrap from Anthropologie

So tomorrow morning before slipping into your the LBD you wear every week--do a double take in that walk-in closet. Any bright colors? Anything new you can put together? Everyday is a day you can't get back and life already is already so starkly contrasted in black and white. 

It's our job to give this life some drops of color.




Once Upon A Time

Once upon a time there was a blonde twenty-something who just wanted to make contact with the ball at her first kickball game. She played second base that day and actually got two people out (by accident) and was feeling wonderful about her newfound athleticism. Maybe her lofty dreams of going to the Olympics one day weren't so out of reach. Nonetheless she felt unstoppable.

And now we come back to reality. Walking back to my car, I instinctually hit the unlock button, climbed in and turned to my friend to follow suit. But my friend had spotted the mini devastation that my cloud nine eyes had yet to see.  I turned to see the back of my car only to see shards of broken glass where my bag of clothes and lunchbox used to be. My car windows had vanished. What witchcraft was this? I was the victim of hooligan antics and the police refused to come. Not life threatening? Not worth the ride in their eyes. No prince was rescuing this princess, so there I stood there on the side of the road. My bra and lunch box stolen. It was like I got mugged during recess. And I was not happy.

In the aftermath of having my car broken into, it is not the broken glass sprinkled across my backseats that makes me want to vomit. It is the acknowledgment that at any point in time, a fire breathing dragon can break into your life. Having something of yours destroyed kind of sucks.  It's a harsh reality check to the twenty-something mantra that we are invincible. And also- I really liked that bra. But in talking with my AllState agent, she or he (I'm not too sure) attempted to comfort me with these words:

When something bad happens...something good happens. 
You sound very uplifted.

Last time I checked uplifted and rageful weren't too synonymous. But I appreciate the silver lining that maybe now I am due for something good.  Because I really haven't slept in five days and some moron is probably selling my Dolce Vita sandals on the internet.  Maybe my Amy's frozen meal filled the stomach of the car bully. Maybe there was one less homeless person on the streets of Houston this week because they are using my silk blouse and Cotton On pants for their next job interview. Who knows. All I know is that if they have breasts-- they will be well supported by my Victoria's Secret Bombshell Bra.

Best of luck to you Car Bully. May you use my college coffee mug on your first day of work.

But really...get a job. And lose the sledgehammer, because this Princess isn't going to live in fear of dragons.