Female: Part Two.

Coming to you live, from her Clueless clad dorm room, it’s Jordan. And believe it or not, I just finished a book. I can practically hear my high school friends gasping from across the country.

My track record with reading is subpar. It took me half a year to read Mindy Kahling’s 300-paged memoir, 3 extra weeks to finish To Kill A Mockingbird for school. It’s not that I’m not literate, it’s just that I wasn’t prioritizing literacy. This semester, I wanted a solution to both my writer’s block and technology-induced insomnia. 

The book I read is called Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud. It’s written by Anne Helen Peterson, a culture writer at Buzzfeed. I initially ordered it because, hello, Buzzfeed, but what I came to find was that it was really relatable to how I’ve been feeling lately. The book dissects the labels of prominent female celebrities. Among the chapters, you’ll find Kim Kardashian, Nikki Minaj, Hillary Clinton. It questions why women are often labeled as too much of something when they don’t fit the proper mold of a woman in the public eye. 

I think I’m graciously independent as a person. I love reassurance, but decisions are ultimately my own and I act for myself first, keeping the people I love as a close second. I jokingly always tell my friends to “be bold,” because “boys like bold girls.” But, what I’ve come to find is that girls like strong girls and society likes polite ones. One of my newfound, and most hated, fears is being penalized for something that’s a part of who I am. She’s too forward because she texts first, too provocative because her boots graze the upper thigh, too bossy because she makes her ideas known. I’d like to say fear of reputation damage doesn’t hold me back, but it does. 

In reflecting on the book, I think that my personal hesitation to leap with open arms comes from the worry of not being respected as a woman, a student, a creative. Sometimes it’s easier to stay silent than ask questions and show vulnerability. And I know I’m feeding the fire, but it’s scary to be a social innovator and it’s a role I’m not sure I’m prepared to take on… yet.

In Lena Dunham’s chapter, Too Naked, it’s said:

“Dunham’s nudity isn’t “brave,” because… for it to be brave she would have to be afraid.”

And I feel like, in a non-nudity related way, that describes how I want to grow as a female. I don’t want to have to feel courageous when I raise my hand in class or when I reply to a Snapchat “too soon.” And to get there, I have to practice not being afraid. Shutting down the second-guessing and layers of analysis. More of an want, act, reflect, repeat model. 

I used to tell myself to do one thing every day that scares me. Whether it’s writing this blog post (about a topic I’ve been scared to talk about because what do I know) or trying a new food for the first time, it was a step towards less unknown. My goal is to bring that back. And to encourage my friends to do the same. One less fear, one more reason to girl boss.

So yeah, I am too opinionated, too power hungry, too obsessive. But that’s also me being vocal, ambitious, and inspired. Three traits a young woman exploring the world should have. We should stop letting our “too”s be paired with negatives and let the females fill the narrative. Because “too unruly” is really just code for not taking this shit anymore. 

And that’s basically where I’m at.


Stuck in my head: Something To Tell You // HAIM
Snap it: my bed!!

Find Anne’s other works here. And join Girls’ Night In Club for more feminist book suggestions like Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud.

My next read is Lily Collin’s memoir, Unfiltered, on her eating disorder and other things young women struggle with. Look at me so knowledge hungry and feminist, right?

If you missed earlier installations of Female, here is the Introduction and Part One

Female: Introduction. 

I’d never given much thought to my gender until recently. You are a woman. That’s it. I know that comes from a place of privilege; I’m white, educated, young, and heterosexual. But due to current events and exposure, I’ve started to open my eyes to the way the world perceives strong women these days. They’re often labeled as too much of something. Too domineering. Too opinionated. Too involved. More to come on this later. 

So I’ve decided to write a three-part blog series entitled Female. Each post will dissect an experience that made me reflect on what it means to be a girl. Part one will come tomorrow. Then look for a new post next week and the week after. Then we can return to tales of toast and Insta.

And I in no way intend to isolate my male readers (Hi Dad). I think it’s important to gain perspective on how your daughter, your wife, your friend could potentially be facing the world, too. So while the words come from me, the experience is shared. 

So put on your brightest shade of pink and keep an open mind. These posts come from the heart, the mind, and the tits. 


Stuck in my head: Talk Too Much // COIN
Snap it: Union Market, DC

Redesigning & Reimagining.

Well, well, well. We’re coming up on one year of VSCO worthy photos, caffeine-fueled rants, and me building a brand that seems scary close to if Cher Horowitz found Instagram. And while I’m still the same bruncher I started as, I’ve also had a lot of new experiences along the way to blogging bliss.

I’ve decided to finally give my blog the love it deserves because much like Corinne on Bachelor In Paradise, it’s been begging for attention. Gotta update it like a closet. To Goodwill with the old, and to Urban for the new. Unless it’s vintage. Then it stays.

Here’s the rundown. Think of it like the next IOS release. Kinda pointless but worth the wait.

  • Name

Goodbye Campus City Classic. It was nice knowing you. The mouthful is gone, and in its place is a new sleek and ready player to take its place. THE NEXT CLASSIC will focus on the upcoming chapters of my life. Finding my next passions, next favorite moments, and next blog binges. Get ready for some of the same, avocado toast is probably not going anywhere, and some things that are a little different. Being single for the first time in a while is one of them. Eating a spoonful of hummus for lunch is definitely not.

  • Categories

Time to take my love of organizing to the streets. Under the HOME tab on the main screen you’ll be able to navigate to different classified posts. It’s pretty intuitive, but I’ve decided to break it down anyway.

Coffee Chats is my most general category- find your favorite food-fests and open letters here. All Things Socials focuses on my best friend and truest love, social media. Cheers to College is mostly about tailgates and study dates. Dear… are my spotlight pieces on the people who are just a little special to my life. GirlBoss is basically internship porn and Probably At The Gym is my tribute to my favorite pastime. And last but not least, Shutterbugs holds my photo diaries of picture perfect memories.

  • Design

Just keeping it in trend. Stripes haves always been a wardrobe staple so it’s time to bring them to the big leagues. The background photo was snapped in a SOHO H&M, somewhere very close to my heart and my closet. And nothing withstands changing times like black and white with a pop of color.

  • Logo

All the classics have it. Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, and of course, Taylor Swift. It was time to join the pack and order the Kylie Jenner lip kit to match. Rumor has it a red lip never goes out of style.

So, welcome to chapter two. I officially own the domain, so we’re not going anywhere. Buckle in for another year of lattes, ripped jeans, and mural hunts.



Stuck in my Head: There’s a Honey // Pale Waves

Props to me for pulling this redesign off in one day. The only thing I’ve ever procrastinated and it looks like it worked out. Maybe I’ll have to try it again sometime. And a huge thank you to Lorde Radio on Spotify and Coco’s Popped Ricecakes for getting me through it. 

Tomato, Sweet Potato.

Everyone loves a good vacation. Whether you’re a sand in my toes or skyscrapers as far as the eye can see kind of traveler, there are very few people who would hate on an escape from everyday life.

I’ve been very fortunate to hit some amazing cities in my life so far, Lisbon and Reyjkavik topping the list. But no matter where the plane lands, my travel goals are still the same. Find the soul of the city. Make a memory. Capture the moment. 

On my latest venture to the ever-so iconic concrete jungle, I started to think about the different values people have when exploring. For some it’s food, others it’s adventure. And it can really change the way a trip unfolds.

Finding the perfect travel companion is like picking the perfect pair of Adidas. The styles might be very similar, but one detail can make the difference. For me, I look for a photographer, a stylist, an honest evaluator, and an eye for a unqiue perspective. Someone ready to hunt for hidden jems to earn a double tap at the end of the day… and maybe split an almond-milk latte in there, too. 

There’s more to all this than just a curated feed. Of course, location (besides company) is everything in an experience. A jungle excursion to Costa Rica doesn’t call for the cutest pair of over-the-knee boots (unless you’re going for a totally Gigi Hadid Vogue vibe), and rainy walks around Key West might require some waterproof, not-so-hot gear. Stepping out of the airport is a commitment to embrace the moment, so strap on your zip lining harness and splash through the puddles with a smile. 

Pulling it back to the main point, travel is different to everyone. You say tomato, I say sweet potato. But in the end, no matter where you go and why, you’re getting the chance to explore the world. And nothing is better than that. Period.

 


Stuck in my head: Woke the F Up (acoustic) // Jon Bellion
Snap it: The Whitney Rooftop, NYC

Island Time

Here’s to lava fields, bright blue water, and infinite waterfalls. 

Last week I crossed something major off my Instagram/life bucket list. The one, the only, a global treasure, Iceland. From the moment we landed in Keflavik (and I saw an adorable coffee shop in the airport followed by countless murals on the drive to the city) I knew I’d cherish every single second I would spend in front of these mountain ranges and behind my iPhone camera lense. And it all lived up to expectations.

Grab your parka and your poncho. Some Haribos for the ride. Call me Glacier Girl because I’m about to take you on a photo tour of the most beautiful 5 days of my life. 

But all you really need to experience Iceland is your favorite travel companions. And luckily I had mine. 


Stuck in my head: Feel it Still // Portugal the Man
Snap it: Reykjavík, Iceland

An Open Letter To Online Shopping.

Dear Online Shopping,

You’re pretty great. I mean who doesn’t love clothes you love at your doorstep in the blink of an eye. My appreciation only grows with the number of boxes that show up on the daily. 

But there’s one thing we have to talk about a little bit. Just a small complaint. Please don’t get mad. Here it goes.

It’s so hard to build a virutal wardrobe when sizing isn’t consistant between sites. There’s no way a size small from Brandy Melville is the same size small from Madewell. And well, it’s kind of frustrating to always have to play this guessing game.

And I know this is a tough problem to fix. But I feel like the illuminati of online retail can come together and settle on standard measurements for the world to follow. It’s not thaaaat difficult. Just one little meeting and it’s all over. Urban Outfitters, Topshop, J.Crew, you guys can spearhead this one, right?

Free returns TOTALLY help. Any site that isn’t free returns can kiss my fashion forward foot goodbye. Free shipping doesn’t hurt either, by the way. But maybe we can follow Birchbox’s lead and figure out a better system for finding the perfect piece. Or we could create a more understandable measurement guide. Something like “If you have the butt of Kim Kardashian but the arms of Karlie Kloss, this dress is probably for you.”

Like I said, you’re truly a life changing. Gotta say, slightly mad at you for putting brick-and-mortar on the fritz because I love a good rack hunt, but the best part of all of this is that you’re still maturing. Everyday there’s something new; from same day delivery to online exclusives, this is only the beginning and you have so much potential. 

So, let’s just fix this while you’re ahead. No pressure, but the fate of fashion’s future rests in your shopping cart. 


Stuck in my head: New Slang // The Shins
Snap it: Madewell, Tyson’s Corner mall

Tweet Tweet… You Should *Totally* Instagram That.

The beauty of social media is that it’s constantly changing. One second something’s hip, the next it’s just a graveyard of ancient out-of-date posts. I mean look at Vine. What used to be the hub of 6 second internet sensations now literally doesn’t exist. I’m definitely not complaining; I needed my embarrassing attempts at being a video star to disappear. But RIP an era. Well, not an era. More like a hot second.

Recently I’ve been thinking a lot about the “Rules of Social Media.” From how many times you can post a day to what’s in and out, I’ve definitely seen a shift in shareable content.

I mainly want to talk about Instagram, because I love it and I’m not ashamed. Their biggest update yet allows you to channel your inner influencer by using spooky similar Snapchat like features such as Instagram Stories. I’ve got to admit, stories freak me out a little bit. With hundreds of followers it actually matters what you put there. TBH, I’ve only ever posted one. And I realized now it totally didn’t do me justice. Shoulda been 14th street tacos, but instead it was just my feet in my bed. Like hello, what was I even thinking?

Personal rule: Make it something worth watching. No selfies. No blurry moments. This is Snapchat’s classy cousin, so read your edicate book closely. Amazing view from a vacation? Share it. Perfect latte art? Share it. Famous person anywhere at anytime? Double share it.

I’ve also been looking at the evolution of post quality. I was one of the first of my friends to post non-people pictures. And I got a lot of hate for it. “You look amazing in this” was sarcastically commented on every Cava, coffee, and cool wall picture that graced my profile. Being threatened to be unfollowed was literally an every day thing for me (in a joking but totally not joking way). Well look at Instagram now. There’s more food than friends. And I am one hundred percent okay with that. I expect to get hungry when checking my feed now. It’s just how it is. 

While social platforms go in and out of style faster than fashion trends (please never let chokers go out, I own too many and I’m waaaaay too invested), I really feel like photosharing is the best way to communicate who you are online. Maybe I’m baised because I love a good solo shot with a mug in hand, but it’s the power of sharing the beauty of the world that keeps me refreshing my feed every twenty minutes. 

Aaaaand if we’re talking socials let me touch on Twitter for a millisecond here. I’m desperately trying to figure out how to be relevant on the app as a non-famous individual and I’ve narrowed it down to two conclusions- 1) Twitter is made for the quick and quirky Mindy Kalings and Amy Schumers of the world and 2) If you didn’t use it while it was hot, there’s no way you’re going to use it while it’s not.

Twitter is definitely a tool for businesses and marketing, I’m constantly browsing and retweeting, but as for creating personal content, if you’re not funny or something hilarious and remarkable doesn’t happen to you, go home and save your characters. Or else you just end up tweeting things that sound like a drunk mom making jokes at the dinner table.

Well, this has been the aspiring social media content strategist crawling out from inside me to guest write today. Great image if you really picture a trendy, jean jacket wearing, 20-something year old emerging from my mouth to type words on my laptop. 

Who knows, maybe she’ll write some tweets for me, too, while she’s at it. One million retweets, here I come. 


Stuck in my head: First Class // Rainbow Kitten Surprise
Snap it: Au Grain de Cafe, Mont-Treblant, Canada

Why I Finished That Donut…

Some of my all time favorite memories revolve around one single thing… food. It’s those bite filled moments that leave a mark on me and I think it’s because food has this innate power to bring people together. What screams friendship louder than a pizza? 


This weekend was one of reunions on many levels & each included a different series of entrees. Sitting next to my best friend, Christian, in a Cava talking for hours on end it was like those 3 months of separation never existed. Confessions over Crazy Feta. Housewives minus the wine. We all know by now that I’m weirdly emotional and attached to people who mean a lot to me, so seeing Christian gave me all the feels.

Update: he’s good and is officially a Boston boy minus the accent (but the accent is probably on the way). As he force fed me pita chips (I swear I didn’t even want them) I couldn’t help but think about how different life is now. It’s not a bad thing or a good thing, it’s just a thing and it’s an adventure and over a arugula bowl and a blackberry sage lemonade it was like time was paused and we we’re back to our 6:30 wildcat mornings.

And then because I love causing myself emotional distress I took a trip over to the legendary WJ for poms senior night. Spoiler: I cried and they were amazing. It was one of those moments when it really hits you that even after you leave, life keeps moving. Not going to lie, my first response to standing in the sound booth next to Coach K was panic that I wasn’t on the field. Believe me I totally don’t miss the stress of the season (think shin splints and mental breakdowns) but I miss the seconds of connection. The bonding over push-ups and pop tarts. The schools “most flexible team” was more devoted to sandwiches than stretching. Totally a team I belonged on.

And then it all comes back to MC. I think our relationship is primarily built on food & the fact that he loves the fat man inside me that can definitely out eat him any day. Long distance has proven to be more difficult than I thought when I wrote my first blog post a couple months ago. Weeks feel like years and sometimes there are tears where there wouldn’t normally be. It sucks and it drains you. But there’s still no one else I’d rather have watch me eat an entire box of gushers.

All in all, I think it’s more than the plate you order off the menu, it’s the experience and the memories that make the meal. I always hear the stories of my dad throwing bits of grilled scallops in the pool at the beach for me to swim around and scoop up and of my sister and I vacuuming edamame off our old wooden table with our mouths while chanting “Go Googoo Go!”

At Cava they always ask their employees their favorite food memory and I’ve always been dying to answer but when I really think about it I can’t pinpoint one moment that rises above the rest. My life has been a snack filled tornado of smiles and good fortune & I just want to thank food for giving me the grounds to get one forkful closer to all the people I love.

So what’s the point? Go out and eat and love it. Because with coffee comes a friend and with each bite comes a new story. 


Stuck in my head: Runaround Sue // Houndmouth
Snap this: Blue Heaven, KW

Sorry for my brief break there- 60 paged project due in 1 week killing me here. Condolences accepted in the form of gummy bears and money. 

New Day, New Cava Bowl

If you know me at all, even on some tiny minuscule “hi I’m jordan” level, then you have probably heard me talk about this thing called Cava. Well, I’m not only a dedicated enthusiast of the DC startup but I am also a social media intern at the brands HQ in DC (such a formal little introduction there).

I’m not just bragging about the fact that I work in the marketing department at the best food place in the world, but I wanted to take the chance to share a little about my experience as an intern and how I got started. I realize that most people who read my blog are already in the working world (hi family members & friends) but this ones for all the high schoolers and college freshmen out there #represent. 

I got involved in Cava through my dad, but once the meeting was set it was on me to bring my A game. Being young in a setting of professionals is extremely intimidating, like I probably didn’t speak outside of asking questions for a month, but showing your personal capabilities are so important and, honestly, so fun. 

I remember on first day at Cava I worked with the community manager, Justin, to get familiar with the brand image. Little did he know I had been doing this for months to prep (Advice #1: know your stuff going in- the more credible and informed you are, the more impressed they are). During our meeting I started talking about the contrast in colors the company uses in their brand book to symbolize their dedication to seasonal foods and about my interest in how they locally source their ingredients and he just looked at me, amazed, and said “woah, you’re like actually so smart.” And that moment has driven my entire interning career since. (Granted its only been a year, but cut me a break, it was moving stuff.)

It’s not about what you already know, it’s about what you bring and what you do about it. Advice #2: be vocal. If you want an internship or job or position, chase it. You may not get it because odds are there is someone more prepared and more perfect than you, but at the chance you’re what they want, you would’ve never known if you didn’t try. Be the most passionate. Share your ideas. Put things on the table. Always. 

One thing I never let myself forget is that every experience is a learning one. Yes- Every. Single. Experience. And every task you do takes you closer to something you could potentially be more passionate about. 

“What do you do at Cava?” is one of my favorite questions ever. The answer is not as glamorous as expected- I send packages, fill donation requests, maintain and create outreach spreadsheets for new locations, take inventory, & a bunch of other clerical things. And I would not trade any bit of that for anything. My role there is to make other people’s jobs easier and I start each task with a smile and end with 100% completion and enthusiasm. After about a year now, I’m starting to get into projects more tailored to my interests- visual media and content creation. I’ve started updating the company’s seasonal Pinterest boards and am getting more assignments as we speak. Advice #3: Work your way up & invest in yourself. You can never say thank you enough, because every job you tackle is just another thing that sets you apart and better prepares you for the future. But don’t stop there. This summer I taught myself illustrator (okay, fine, I had a little help) and Google programs (spreadsheets, maps, etc) to improve my skill set and become more versatile in the workplace. Have I even taken a business class yet? Not really. Do I know the power of innovating and marketing myself? Totally- it’s indispensable.   

Lastly, advice #4: find your passion. Cava puts a lot of emphasis on cooking and the power of food, and while I ashamedly say I barely know a pot from a pan, my connection with food is more than just eating (more on this later…). The mentality of the company is something I stand behind whole-platedly and I am so honored to be a part of the team.

Cava is “for those who savor,” and I definitely savor every nanosecond of my time there. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for me this semester- I know it won’t disappoint. 

More to come on my Cava chronicles & the road to real life


Stuck in my head: Past Lives // Borns
Snap it: Cava DuPont

Get this Cava Bowl: Mesclun mix. Half Chicken, Half Falafel. 1 scoop Traditional Hummus & 1 scoop Red Pepper Hummus. Pita crisps.  Tomato & cucumber. Pickled Cabbage. Double quinoa. Feta. Greek Vinegarette. Green Harissa. (& Vanilla Bean Limeaide) 

Losing my “BLOG-GINITY”.

Hello world. It’s me, Jordan.
Come along on my adventure!
Get ready, I will be your guide to freshman year.
I’m going to give this my best shot & pray it doesn’t turn into something embarrassing my friends hold against me years in the future. 

I’m pretty new to this whole blog thing, except for the fact I’ve idolized bloggers and have wanted to be one ever since I found the internet, and now, sitting in my college dorm room, I’ve decided to “develop my personal edge,” as my business class has been saying, by writing a blog about the things I love, the places I go, and the lessons I learn.

For now lets start here- College comes with this huge expectation that you need to make something of yourself in the first 5 seconds. It’s pretty overwhelming to think that what I’m doing right now is actually the start of my real life… well kinda…but still its a BIG DEAL. During my freshman welcome last week they asked us who we wanted to be and how we were going to get there. Lucky for me, I actually do have a career set in my sights & a city too, but getting there is about 8 semesters and a million experiences away.

I’ve always been a go-getter and not afraid to take risks, but starting a blog is one of the scariest things I’ve ever done. There are just so many what ifs it gets you all in your head- what if no one reads it, what if you’re a horrible writer but no one ever told you, what if your content sucks. But my Grandpa always said I was a gifted story-teller, and if your Grandpa says it then it’s obviously the genuine truth, right?

Okay, here’s what I’m thinking: there’s probably going to be no consistent type of posts because I couldn’t decide between a fitness, food, travel, or college life blog, so I’m just going to try it all out and hope for the best. Here I go. No turning back. Posting my first post. Losing my “Blog-ginity.” I really hope more people than just my Mom read this.


Stuck in my head: “Lisztomania” // Pheonix

Warning- You’re probably going to read a lot about Instagram, pizza, clothes, Cava Grill, my friends, DC, and the University of Maryland…and see the & symbol 10,000 times a post. I’m not even sorry, it’s just who I am.