All posts tagged “Life Hacks

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FAKE GUMBEAUX SERIES: THE WORKPLACE

As an O.G., it’s natural for me to want to keep it real (or as the millennials like to say, one hundred); however, I am somewhat very certain I could’ve avoided a lot of issues if I was fake. If I would’ve remained quiet or minded my business instead of telling coworkers and management they were incompetent, should consult subject-matter experts, or take courses to become more familiar with their jobs. If as an intern, I would’ve checked emails, opened mailed and made copies instead of telling the women I worked with that I did not go to undergrad and acquire student loans to become a secretary. That upon graduation, I was going to secure a job paying six figures. Note: A lot of them were secretaries that were not college-educated, with little to no chance of advancement and salaries that barely paid a living wage. 

Show of hands, are you surprised a lot of people hated me? Anyone? Anyone? Fun fact: the hate came with a host of awesome rumors. My favorite is the one where I screwed my way into an entry-level job (that had an embarrassingly low salary). But if I could do it all again, what advice would I give myself? I, am glad you asked.

Tip #1: Engage in small talk, learn small facts about coworkers (family and hobbies), and “bond.”

Tip #2: Be a “team player.” Have bland lunch with coworkers, celebrate their birthdays and other accomplishments. Buy them cheap gifts.

Tip #3: Don’t say it, think it. You can still call your coworker a punk-ass bitch, just do it in your head. Not out loud.

Tip #4: Hold doors open. Break room, conference room, and elevator doors. Apparently, it’s polite.

Tip #5: Smile. It disarms people and makes them think you are nice. Once, someone told me I had kind eyes. My family and I laughed about that for days.

A “director” introduced me as one who could insult people in a way they wouldn’t know they were insulted until days later. It’s still one of the most memorable descriptions of me. I wonder if he is still acting like he’s qualified to be director of anything besides a used-car dealership with an inventory of only 4 cars.

Just remember, you’re only at work because they pay you to be there. If you’re really having a tough time, throw a tantrum in the nearest bathroom stall or cry in your car then get back to work and slap that award-winning fake smile on your face. You’re welcome.

Read my last post: Am I Shitty Friend? Follow me most places @pinkgumbeaux.

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AM I A SHITTY FRIEND?

About a decade ago, I met someone I had a lot in common with so I wasn’t surprised when we became friends but then, something super weird happened. She wanted to talk to me every single day. We were classmates so I talked to her before and after class, hung out a few times during the week, texted and talked on the phone, every day. Yes, it was that horrific! I was so overwhelmed that I confided in my mother.

Me: Mom, she wants to talk to me every single day, I am so confused.

Mom: Girl, it’s because you are friends!

I was bewildered and to be quite honest, reliving this moment is triggering. Also, I am 72 percent sure this story has nothing to do with this post.

Leave it to Facebook to ignite a spiral of internal thoughts (but mostly overthinking) that led me to ask myself: Why don’t I have lasting friendships? For the last 50 years (actually, I’m only 32), I blamed everyone else but I think I’ve reached a point in my very mature life that I can confirm that I may share some of the blame but probably not.

The older I get, the more I am attracted to people who share the same award-winning traits as me. Not surprisingly, I don’t see the purpose of establishing close bonds with people who don’t share those same traits, “values,” lifestyle and even political beliefs. What’s worse, I often hold people to the same standards I hold myself which my cousin (hey Karen) and I deem unfair but guess what? Life is not fair.

I have tons of seasonal friendships, the kind when one is super close then not but this isn’t necessarily my fault or a bad thing. Life happens but I am attempting to do better. For example, I list people I need to check in with via call (the horror) or text, in my planner. Side Note: Aprill, Jessica, Chariece and Ashley, I am texting you right after I publish this post.

I often lack empathy and hold grudges. I am sure that I have been a grudge-holder since birth. If your name is Ashley and you are light skin and went to Saint John Berchman for pre-school in 1989, I am still mad at your punkass for pinching me on several occasions. I am fairly certain that you have grown to be a terror to your community. So yeah, that basically illustrates I have never been a forgiving person. I will hate you for the remainder of your life, my life, future lives, past lives, bloodlines and pets. I am revisiting this cardinal rule because in most instances, it’s not that serious (except for Ashley). I am chipping at this and think I should be ready to turn a new leaf in about 56 to 82 years.

I do want to note that I do have several friends I talk to daily, and occasionally we see each other! We talk about politics and pop culture, family and friends behind their backs, we give each other terrible advice, and complain about our coworkers and jobs well, all except me. I just started my job and obviously I love it just in case anyone from my job cyberstalked me and found my blog. So, where do I go from here? Obviously, I am accepting applications for additional friends and yes there is an application fee. Anyway, have you been a shitty friend and why? Do you plan on changing or will you remain shitty like the friends I tried to talk about this with. Now that I think about it, maybe it’s not me. Yeah, it’s totally everyone else.

I am such a good noodle.

Side note: No, I’m no longer friends with the girl I talked about earlier in the post, we got into a Facebook fight. If you’re reading this, I just want to say I accept your apology. And to Ashley, f*** you!

Read and share this post, follow me on most platforms @pinkgumbeaux, and read my last (and very old post) Everything But Essence

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BABY GUMBEAUX TURNS 4 MONTHS! FT. HUSBAND & DROOL

Yes, it’s a girl.

Most importantly, I survived 4 months of motherhood. By the way, the word “motherhood” still sounds super aggressive.

Note: Baby Gumbeaux drooled throughout the duration of this interview; thereby, contributing absolutely nothing . However, I thought it pertinent to include her drool as a featured writer. 

About Baby Gumbeaux

Baby is 11 pounds of attitude! She loves when we read and sing to her, laughs when we dance, yammers loudly about her day (in a language we don’t understand), can now grab small toys, drools a ton, lights up when called beautiful, occasionally displays the side eye, does not like strangers touching her hands (neither do I), and will scream if you remove her pacifier (which the director of her daycare learned the hard way). At this point, Baby is still sleeping in 3- or 4-hour intervals, it just depends on how busy her baby schedule was that day (translation: we still ain’t getting sleep).

About Fatherhood

Fatherhood helped me realize how much time I had (and no longer have).

Having a baby is expensive AF. We had some chump change saved but there is a host of unplanned expenses.

I think we need to work on Baby Gumbeaux’s resume and post it to Ziprecruiter.

Anything else about Fatherhood? You know, I’ve heard parents say they had nothing to live for prior to their kids and I don’t feel that way, lol. However, I do feel like she has always been apart of my life. It just seems like this is my reality, I don’t miss who Ashlee was before her.

She’s Daddy’s Sweet Sweet Baby.

Not relevant. 

I like to visualize what part of us she will have. I like to see how much she looks like me.

She does mirror you but has my personality. It is your face but my personality so I think that’s better. Anyway, the baby was barely out of my body before people started planning the next one. How quickly do people forget about the mental and physical trauma associated with childbirth. When I tell you I don’t want another kid, you’re silent. 

People don’t think about the pain and trauma because it’s your pain and trauma. So, it’s OK…

What? Lol. What do you mean “it’s OK?” 

*laughing* Because, I’m not the one in pain and trauma. Regarding other kids, I think she should have someone in life.

So, think about all the siblings we know. Not many of them are close. I think that “having someone” logic is bullshit. 

Think about your brother…

That doesn’t count, that’s an anomaly. Moving on, having a kid makes me think about my upbringing a lot. The things I want to model, the things I want to change. I wish I had the community I had. I had both my parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. All of these people had an impact on my life that resulted in who I am today (which may or may not be a contribution to society, I am not sure). Do you think about quality of life and education; particularly, since we’re trapped in Mississippi? 

I mean, yeah. Not only do I want her to have what I didn’t have, I want her to have what I did.

Note: Why can’t we just move? We can’t move because my husband is an awesome f***ing architect and developer and has big plans for Jackson that requires us to be here (and for me to support him). 

Do you have any comment on why we are stuck here? 

Women are to do as they’re told.

Whatever. Thanks, for this boring interview. Drool, your presence is much appreciated. Read and share my previous post: Good For You. Subscribe, like, and follow me @pinkgumbeaux.

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POST STORM SURVIVAL & WHERE TO DONATE


Due to being an awesome and well prepared blogger, I often have a backlog of blog posts. Prior to Hurricane Harvey, I was trying to determine if I should publish a post on my new skincare routine, bitch about my pregnancy or tell you about a new artist I am obsessed with. None of those topics seem important right now.

August 29th marked the 12th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, the worst experience of my life to date. We lost everything, I no longer have childhood homes or schools, and the emotional and psychological effects are lasting. Being refereed to as “refugees,” judged for looting, blamed for crimes in areas where we relocated, and being told it happened because New Orleans needed to be “cleansed” didn’t help. And, people are already saying some of the same things about Houston.

This past week was hard because it brought back some of the same anxiety. Although I am in dry and boring Mississippi, my New Orleans family and friends relocated to Houston after Hurricane Katrina and the flood in Baton Rouge last year. My husband is from Houston so his entire family and friends (that I actually like) are there. Although this event is catastrophic, I am grateful for the same thing I was grateful for 12 years ago. None of my family and friends died but not everyone was as fortunate. After all, things can be replaced. But then there is the aftermath and I’m hoping I can provide some advice to people experiencing this as well as those who want to help.

WHERE TO GET ASSISTANCE?

First and foremost, compose a list of necessities then a list of things that need to be replaced.

  • Contact FEMA for assistance
  • Although controversial, contact Red Cross too
  • FREE accommodations from Airbnb
  • The Greater Houston Community Foundation composed this list of relief resources

So, a bit of time has passed and you are in the process of rebuilding your life. You will need counseling, your kids will need counseling. People who have experienced such devastation often suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

WHERE TO DONATE:

Congratulations, you are not as bad as I thought. Donate to the following:

  • Pay Pal has listed several agencies to donate to.
  • If you are near the areas affected, offer space for free through Airbnb
  • Donate through Apple’s App Store or iTunes
  • Donate money and supplies to the Greater Houston Community Foundation
  • Donate money, goods, supplies, clothing, furniture and cars to the Salvation Army
  • Donate diapers
  • Donate money, food and volunteer at the Houston Food Bank
  • Donate money and food to the Galveston County Food Bank
  • Donate money and food to the Corpus Christi Food Bank
  • Donate to Entergy and Red Cross who have partnered to restore power
  • Donate through GoFundMe
  • Use this Charity Navigator to find organizations to donate to
  • Donate or volunteer through the North American Mission Board
  • Donate to Heart to Heart International
  • Donate or volunteer through Samaritan’s Purse
  • Donate to the Texas Workers Relief Fund
  • Donate to the Animal Defense League of Texas or purchase from their Amazon wishlist
  • Donate to SPCA of Texas
  • Donate to Portlight

If you are about that life (I’m not), donate blood.

As stated previously, I have family that have been affected. If you are interested in helping, email me.

Although recovering from such devastation takes time, can be frustrating and is most definitely a test of perseverance, you can get through this. It’s possible.

Ashlee, out!