She Interns: The Commute

Jeans: Topshop , £40
Shoes: Clarks , £32
Jacket: Zara, £30
Bag: As Before Urban Outfitters, £22.50
Top: Own Acrylic Print, Fabric Top, Zara, £5 Sale

TOTAL OUTFIT: £129.50

THE COMMUTE

Yesterday was the second proper commute of my life, and as I sit here typing, I’m making my third, joining what looks like a futuristic, dystopia-imminent horror movie. The train is pretty full on this pre 9am service, the air is hot and muggy from many suits pressed into unfortunately upholstered seats, and the 70 bodies exhaling in this compartment are all jacked into various devices. It’s all feeling very Watchowski Bros (usefully a brother and sister) and ominous to my Tuesday morning mindset, as I realise that 7AM is the weeks’ routine beginning; from the alarm I’m in the system and ‘online’ now that I have an iPhone. Mild sympathy is what I’m used to when I whip out my phone, until Sunday a nifty little Sony Ericsson k500i, but my fairly shockingly efficient iPhone fits right into the commuter life, where all my train companions sit in an early morning zonk with their consoles.

It’s the same pang of regret I get when I pull out my beautiful matt Kindle, another bewildering technology update for my 21st year; it’s not necessarily just nostalgia for childhood things, but the reluctance to feel the strangeness of holding items that, as far as I used to be concerned, were for the ilk of Captain Janeway and her starship crew. At least I can thank my Dad for his Star Trek education, or else, as it is, I’d be completely unprepared to accept these gizmos*. Even in the office, the use of email over speech is at first baffling, but again a blindingly efficient way of tracking responsibility, decisions, deadlines and documents.

Maybe it’s just that the edgy ear cuff I’ve taken to wearing this week that’s rubbing off on me.

THE WORK LIFE

Back into real work – it’s the day after and I’m typing up the work that I covered yesterday, which involved handing in the finished article I was writing yesterday, and getting straight into learning about client’s media booklets, a way to store their press coverage and provide not only a record of useful contacts and a backlog of old work, but provides a tangible demonstration of the company’s output ie. The Results. After helping compile a media booklet of my own, I was free to take an lunch break with my trusty packed box and kindle. Belfast is truly baking in this heatwave, and the hour is a welcome break from the office and shiny screens (which are nigglingly weirding me out today like it’s some episode of Black Mirror).

When I return, seeking shelter from the heat, I chat to Bob, the absolute old gentleman who looks after the permanent War Memorial Exhibition down stairs; can’t hear a thing, bless him, but we manage to communicate some form of happy friendliness regardless! I’m sent on errands with a long-term intern of the office, and she affirms some fears I’ve long suspected of the unpaid intern world (which is a self-perpetuating, studentential nightmare in certain respects) but encourages me to keep at it. Thank goodness for to meeting people on the same path for some thoughtsharing and morale-boosting. I spend the afternoon cataloguing some goodies the company receives from beauty brands and am released to chirpy freedom to catch the 1714 train home.

Today I donned my work clothes and played the (reluctant) commuter, scoped out the industry and took a sneaky peak into the perks cupboard.
It’s looking like staying in education forever is the key. Sorry Parents…?

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* Some academics have given this feeling a fancy name: premediation. Cheers Prof. Grusin!
You can check out his blog, Premediation, or his academic paper of the same title via Project Muse or JSTOR.

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She Interns: The Desk Life

 

Shirt: £6, Beijing Silk Market
Jeans: £13.50*, Topshop , Sale
Bag: £22.50*, Urban Outfitters Sale
Jumper: £12.99, Missguided.com
Shoes: £10, Primark

TOTAL OUTFIT:  £64.99
*+ 10% student discount

THE DESK LIFE

The first day’s done and dusted, and there is one thing of which I am absolutely certain: I am not used to sitting at a desk. My eyes watered, my head pounded, my back ached and boy, was my butt numb; it seemed like everything of my physical body was pitching revolution at being confined to a chair for a measly six hours.

I have an immense respect for the 9-5ers. In hindsight of my working past, I’ve been extremely lucky to have worked very active jobs running photosets, shop-assistanting, acting as cater-waiter, art and english teacher, costume assistant, MUA and model… all roles free to spontaneity and standing perpendicular to the ground. That’s not to say I haven’t interned before; this week counts as my fourth set of work experience to date, but it’s only now that I’m realising the similarity these experiences actually have to academic life –  they always said university prepares you for the working world, but who knew they’d be right? That body-numb feeling is one that I’ve only felt otherwise in essay-crisis mode, a period of life that I slip in and out of with ease at University. My body may be numb, but (and let’s not linger on that particular pun) my brain is buzzing.

THE WORK LIFE

There’s a glossy sheen to everything on the PR floor, from the thick acrylic surfaces and shocking pink curtains to the original Terry Bradley (again, cerise) on the wall. It’s not a literal sheen, although perspiration wouldn’t be surprising from solid objects at the temperatures Belfast is reaching this week, but a shimmer that perhaps can only be felt by a bambi-eyed intern. The shimmer of a ‘real-life’ working office, of purpose and efficiency that made me feel goggly, left-handed (I’m not) and flustered as I tried my best not to bumble about my white desk in the open plan office – where everything is visible, especially ‘here’s-the-new-one’ bag-rustling and chair fumbling.

Reality, however, has never been a better friend. Blast FM is nattering on in the background, there’s chatter of a healthy gossip to business ratio that breaks the working silence, and after my first couple of questions (which are always the hardest) the real day started with basic tasks. I got to see the work for three big clients, pitching in for the research behind two written articles and having a sneaky peek at a fashion editorial that gave me some serious goosepimples. To close up the day, I got given a writing feature – to my type-happy delight – for a certain big newspaper, and nearly burned my retinas concentrating on it until 5PM jumped in and I felt a rush of home-time exhilaration.

 Today I donned my intern shoes, tappled out some real-life work and clipped out at 5PM feeling like a genuine, wooden-heeled office-girl – and I loved it!

Let’s hope my butt survives tomorrow.

Goodnight.

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The 'Welcome Home' Mat
Made it through Day #1, team!

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LUST LIST: AW 2012

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THE BIG ONE: Herringbone Short Coat, Mango

I am in  love with oversize this autumn, and this oversize coat is killing me. Picture rolled up sleeves and just-too-big shoulders on, well, anything. It’s the perfect boyish piece to emphasise a slender frame that I wish was in my wardrobe. Please? Now?

THE WARM ONE: Knitted Speckle Slouch Jumper, Topshop

The winter chills are coming, and the student house is on measly heating, and I want a cosy cream jumper. Paired with black jeggings, scrunched down grey socks, black ankle boots and a messy bun… is it obvious I’ve been fantasising about this too much?

THE WEIRD ONE: Gargantuan Green Grape, OPI

You know when you’ve got that weird fashion itch that you can’t quite explain? Well, this is it. Maybe it’s the looming grey autumn weather, but this month I’ve had an overwhelming compulsion to slap some bright green on my nails and see how it goes, so some OPI (only the smoothest nail polish ever) Gargantuan Green Grape is going on my lust list…

THE CLASSIC ONE: Del Rey, Mulberry

Big. Carries things. Looks great. Self-explanatory, really.

THE WACKY ONE: Mono Cosmic Skater, Urban Outfitters

I’m not big on prints, and my wardrobe is very simple, but I’ve a closeted desire to own something this wacky for a geek-chic look – think Zooey Deschanel-esque glasses, tights, brogues and a loose white shirt. I’m not entirely sure which space conventions I’m invited to that I could wear this at, but the more I look at it, the more I’m thinking – screw simplicity and get this wacky number on.

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