Over the past two weeks I’ve been binge watching Ally McBeal on Netflix. Before you groan and roll your eyes, in my defense, I’d never watched a single episode of the show before. I had seen a few minutes here and there when I was in high school and I never understood the show. So a couple weeks ago, fueled by rosé and Thai food, I started the series and watched multiple episodes in a row. I told one of my best friends that this show was right up my alley (no pun intended). I explained that I’m a fan of any show centered around a professional woman who is a “hot mess”. I completely identified with it.
Ally was a young lawyer living Boston. She was neurotic. She was flighty. She dated a lot. She dated the wrong people. Ally was an emotional mess who haphazardly bounded around Boston looking for the perfect guy. Ally has been described as self-absorbed, offensive, ditzy and anti-feminist. But, in my opinion, while Ally was flawed, out of touch and delusional, she was unapologetically herself. And I can completely get behind that.
“Professional Hot Mess” was going to be the original name of my blog. I thought it was fitting. I’m an educated working (not at the moment) professional. And I’m a self-proclaim hot mess. I know the term has some negative connotations and there are plenty of people who are probably more deserving of the title. But, in my opinion, the phrase is a term of endearment.
Defined by Urban Dictionary a “hot mess” is a person whose thoughts or life are in a “state of disarray but they maintain an undeniable attractiveness or beauty.” I think the definition fits perfectly (especially the “undeniable attractiveness or beauty” part. Am I right?) I possess an uncanny ability to keep multiple professional plates spinning while wearing a cute outfit but, personally, my life is in shambles. And when I say “shambles” I mean my dating life is a wreck, I have the hobbies of a teenage girl (I spent a significant portion of the weekend getting caught up on MTV’s Teen Wolf) and I panic when there is no wine in my apartment. (Especially on a snow day!)
When I was a teenager I thought adults had it all figured out. Part of the reason I went to law school was to have a practical stable career which would, in turn, convert me into a stable and practical human being. Oddly enough, no one warned me that success or advancement in school and your career doesn’t exactly equal success or advancement in your personal life. No one told me that I would still eat pizza at 3 am after a night out. No one told me that I’d still have a subscription to US Weekly. No one told me that at 32 years old I’d Facebook (and/or social media) stalk old crushes from elementary school. (Oh he grew up nicely, didn’t he?)
I’ve been contemplating this post for a while and have compiled a rather impressive list of reasons I qualify as a “hot mess”:
- I’m only on time to job interviews or court hearings (or as I explain it: “things that matter”). I generally run at least 15 minutes late to everything, including dates, doctor’s appointments, hair appointments, dinner reservations, etc.
- I have a hard time identifying with people who don’t have cable. And, I’m not talking about people who can’t afford cable. I’m talking about people who don’t own a television, don’t have cable and/or don’t have Netflix, Hulu, etc. You know who I’m talking about. The people who have never heard of any popular television shows or loudly announce that “they don’t have time for television!” Even when I was billing 80 hours a week, I still found time for the Daily Show.
- Real life quote from me: “I need to find a career test. One of those tests that analyzes your personality traits and matches those to a career. You know what? Nevermind. I’ll just take a Buzzfeed quiz or something.”
- I went to see Lana Del Rey instead of Nine Inch Nails at Lollapalooza (and proceeded to make excuses for her subpar set).
- I own all the Lauren Conrad seasons of the Hills on DVD.
- I routinely go out for groceries for the week and return home with: multiple bottles of wine, variety of cheeses, dark chocolate and eggs.
- I follow all the Kardashians/Jenners on Instagram (except for Kylie. Sorry, girl.)
- I stayed up until midnight to download the new Miley Cyrus album. It was so worth it. I swear. (Except for that Future song. Who is Future? Why is Future?)
- On multiple occasions, I have grabbed someone and shouted into their face “Usher is so amazing. He makes the hits. The hits. Every song is so catchy.”
- While my role models include Michelle Obama, Hilary Clinton, and Oprah, I also count Chelsea Handler and Giuliana Rancic among them. I’ve followed Giuliana on Twitter since she was Giuliana DiPandi. (I’m fairly certain many people reading this have no clue what I’m talking about)
- I have a strategy for my nail polish. It either (1) matches my mood or (2) a specific message I’m trying to convey.
- Another real life quote from me describing my desired haircut to my stylist: “Katie Holmes. But Katie Holmes right after Victoria Beckham moved to Los Angeles and Katie chopped all her hair off and they became fake BFFs and went shopping all the time. I know she’s white but you get the generally idea of the hair cut, right?”
- I try to fix every problem with pizza.
- On several occasions, I’ve bought an item of clothing only to realize I already owned the same item of clothing in the same color. (I guess that’s why I liked it so much!)
- Currently obsessed with two shows: The Only Way Is Essex and Made in Chelsea. You’re welcome. Now go get your life.
- A friend described Mary Jane from Being Mary Jane as “a professional woman who is busy making basic b*tch mistakes.” I immediately thought: “Yikes. This sounds like me.”
- I maintain that there is a Britney Spears song to fit every personal situation. For example: “Stronger” is the perfect song for my current situation.
- Too many times I’ve told a story and my friends and/or family have responded with: “You need to write a book on your life.”
So there, I’ll gladly and willingly take the “hot mess” title. It’s a lot more fun than practical and stable anyway. Practical and stable people aren’t fun to talk to at parties anyway.