Global warming is definitely a bad thing Scott Pruitt

A couple of weeks ago, a news alert from the Washington Post popped up on my phone. “EPA’s Scott Pruitt asks whether global warming ‘necessarily is a bad thing,’” it read.

I decided to ignore the alert and read it later when I was ready to face the ignorance of the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, Scott Pruitt.

In a 2016 opinion piece for the National Review, Pruitt said global warming is a debate that is “far from settled” and questioned the legality of the Clean Power Plan, which Pruitt has plans to repeal.

How someone with these beliefs is head of the EPA is a mystery to me.

In Washington Post’s article, Pruitt seems to finally acknowledge that global warming is occurring and offers up a new tactic by asking if a warmer atmosphere is bad for the Earth. It’s unclear why he thinks this exactly, but in multiple interviews he repeats the idea that no one knows the ideal temperature in 2100 and the focus should be on what is happening today, not in one hundred years.

If Pruitt focused on today, he would see the numerous detriments of global warming including the severity of wildfires. Higher temperatures in spring and summer combined with earlier snow melting in the winter results in hotter and drier forests, prime conditions for a wildfire to start and spread. This is evident in California and according to their state fire protection agency, Cal Fire, wildfires burned an average of 202,751 acres each year. That number nearly doubled in 2017 to 505,900 acres.

Global warming is also causing a faster acceleration of rising sea levels, more destructive hurricanes and heavier flooding in some areas with severe droughts in others, which can disrupt food production and supply.

With ample evidence that global warming is definitely a bad thing, Pruitt needs to focus on how to stop global warming today, tomorrow and in 2100.

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Modern dating for millennials: Takeaways from “U Up?” podcast

In honor of Valentine’s Day, I decided to give my blog some love and talk about my take aways from the “U Up?” dating podcast. Whether you’re single, in a relationship or in a “it’s complicated” situation, everyone can benefit from listening to “U Up?” Hosted by Jordana Abraham of Betches Media and comedian Jared Freid, “U Up?” tackles dating for millennials in a humorous yet serious way as they give advice from female and male perspectives.

It’s easier than ever to go on dates, but harder than ever to keep a relationship

Thanks to Tinder, Hinge, Bumble, other dating apps and social media, there are so many ways to connect with people online and plan dates. However, as easy as it is to do this, it’s harder than ever to keep a relationship. Before the Internet, no one knew what a significant other was doing in his or her spare time. Now boyfriends and girlfriends can see what their significant other is liking and who they are following on Instagram and other apps, which can lead to jealousy and create tension in the relationship.

It’s not you, it’s ME…literally

The dreaded phrase, “It’s not you, it’s me,” actually has some truth in it. Society has taken a valid reason to stop dating and turned it into a cliché. Sometimes a person has their own reasons for not wanting to date you and those reasons have nothing to do with you. You’re great. Maybe this person isn’t over their ex, or is swamped with work and doesn’t have the time to be the boyfriend or girlfriend you deserve. Stop looking for reasons to blame yourself.

Self-reflect and work on yourself

While you shouldn’t blame yourself every time a relationship ends, you should also be able to self-reflect and see where you may need to work on yourself. A relationship is never going to be perfect, but if you both put in effort to be your best selves, it’ll be pretty close to it.

Don’t make rules for dates

First dates should be about having fun. Giving yourself rules to follow like time limits and amount of drinks you should have can hinder a date. Live in the moment and focus on the date, not the rules.

It’s not a race to your wedding day

Even if you’re the last of your friend group to get married, it doesn’t mean you lose the wedding race. Engagements, weddings and babies should not be viewed as a competition between women. Some of your friends may be married before you but that doesn’t mean their marriages will be happier than yours. You’re looking for the person you are going to spend the rest of your life with, so it may take a while do find them. Don’t settle and enjoy where you’re at in life, even if that is by yourself for now.

Read my full review of “U Up?” in the Reading Eagle here.

2017 year in review & 2018 goals

2017 will be best known as the year I graduated from DeSales UniversityIMG_3094 2

It was a lot of hard work and finally graduating with a B.A. in communication was bittersweet. I was sad to leave my friends, my professors, who were such big influences in my life, and the college newspaper, The Minstrel. I was also excited to be finally done and a couple of weeks later, I had an interview with the Reading Eagle, which led to my first job in journalism.

To learn more about my year, read: Missing the back-to-school vibe this year, My new job as an obituary writer is the opposite of depressing, Saying goodbye to my role as editor-in-chief. 

I bought my first car, a 2017 Chevy Sonic in July

Before this car, I co-owned a car with my dad that I paid him back for, so it was exciting to be the sole owner of the car and finance it myself.

Five months later, the car was totaled

Read about the impaired driver that caused the accident in the Reading Eagle here.

Chad and I got back together

After being apart for a year, dating other people and learning about ourselves, Chad and I reconnected and started dating again. We needed the time apart and have learned a lot, and now our relationship is stronger than ever.

I experienced a lot of firsts

I went to my first Eagles game and NASCAR race, ran in 5Ks, visited wineries, went hiking in new places and finally got a Netflix account. I visited Washington, D.C., for the first time and completely geeked out at the Newseum. I took a hand-lettering class, which created a fun, relaxing pastime for me. And I also tried new food like Moe’s and Duck Donuts, and ate an overwhelming amount of ice cream. Thanks to all my friends and family for making these experiences memorable and being there for me.

I was disgusted by the news

Despite what was occuring in my life, the news was hard to ignore, especially when I want to be a news reporter. Of course there is too much to cover, but 2017 seemed to be full of more shootings, terrorist attacks and violence than ever before. Although devastating hurricanes and earthquakes rocked the world, the U.S. pulled out of the Paris Climate Accord and it is clear President Trump has no concern about climate change or the environment. This makes it even more important for everyone to do their part for the Earth. Lastly, all the sexual assault allegations were disturbing, but the #MeToo movement was the silver lining by inspiring women to stand up for themselves and speak out. I hope this leads to actual change in 2018 and doesn’t just get pushed under the rug.

2018 career goals

I actually never made a resolution last year because I was focused on graduating and finding a job, and thankfully I accomplished that. This year I don’t exactly have a resolution either, but I have a lot goals for my career in 2018. I would like to leave Marshalls and find something more fulfilling to supplement my part-time job at the Reading Eagle; however, the longterm goal is to obtain a full-time job as a reporter.

2018 personal goals

When college ended and I had more free time, I started exercising more by running, lifting weights and doing core workouts. I just got an ab wheel for Christmas and plan to continue exercising and staying fit in the New Year. I also want to work on not letting the little things bother me so much and enjoying what I have.

How to combat dry, itchy winter skin

As the first day of winter nears, temperatures in Pennsylvania are dropping, drying out my skin and making it itch. I’m going to share with you the products I use to help relieve these symptoms. All products are under $15 and I usually purchase them at my local Giant or Target. Feel free to comment below and let me know what works for you.

AmLactin Alpha-Hydroxy Therapy

About six years ago now when I was in high school, I saw a dermatologist for red patches of skin. She told me I have extremely dry skin and gave me a prescription for two different cremes, which helped clear up the red stops, and also recommended AmLactin moisturizing body lotion. It is 12 percent lactic acid and is pH-balanced for the skin, encouraging skin cell renewal through exfoliation. I only use this lotion when my skin is feeling especially dry and itchy. While effective, it leaves a heavy lotion feeling and doesn’t have the most pleasant smell for claiming to be “fragrance free.”

Tip: Another suggestion from the dermatologist was to switch to gentle laundry detergent. I use Ultra Downey Free & Gentle, it’s free of perfumes and dyes and dermatologist tested for sensitve skin. $8.99, Target

Vaseline Intensive Care Spray Moisturizer

This is my go-to lotion that I use every morning and night. The spray bottle makes it super easy to apply and it absorbs quickly. Unlike AmLactin, I do not notice I even have the Vaseline lotion on. It leaves a non-greasy, clean feeling. I’ve used the original and the cocoa radiant, both smell great, and it also comes in aloe.

Clean & Clear Dual Action Moisturizer

This dual action moisturizer moisturizes dry skin while also treating and preventing acne. I’m not sure how well it works for acne, but it does a great job of moisturizing my face. I apply this to my face every morning and night or as needed in the winter.

Curél Itch Defense Body Wash

I started using this a couple of summers ago when my legs were extremely itchy. My skin wasn’t dry and I didn’t have bug bites so I had no idea what was causing the irritation. I really don’t know what was going on but this worked so well and I continue to use it as my regular body wash. It’s dermatologist recommended and accepted by the National Eczema Association. Jojoba oil and olive oil act as hydrating agents. It also says it’s fragrance free, but has a pleasant lemon scent.

Gold Bond Intensive Healing Cream

I have tried a lot of itch cremes for quick, fast itch relief and Gold Bond Anti-Itch Skin Protectant Cream has worked the best for me so far. It is full of healing moisturizers for skin and also vitamins A, C and E. It helps soothe dry, itchy patches of skin and I have also used it to soothe mosquito bites.

Fun-run 5Ks reviewed: Color Me Rad, Warrior Dash, Insane Inflatable, The Great Pumpkin Run

Color Me Rad 5K

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An old photo of me from 2014 after my first ever 5K.

Throughout this bright and happy 5K, there are numerous color stations where volunteers throw colored powder on you or douse you in liquid color. The end of the run is even more fun though. There is lively music and the MC invites guests on stage to compete in games and other activities. For my first Color Me Rad 5K, a group of people and myself went on stage while the whole crowd sang “Happy Birthday” to us, so that was a cool experience.

The MC and his helpers also throw color packets into the crowd. You are encouraged to open the packet and share the powder with those around you by dumping some into your neighbors’ hands. Then there is a countdown and everyone throws the powder into the air making a huge rainbow cloud. This is where you will get the most color on you and sometimes it’s a little hard to breathe with the powder flying around, but the color is safe and non-toxic. It’s corn starch-based with food-grade dyes.

Tip: Most of the color will wash out of your clothes. To make clean up easier, cover your car seats with old towels or bed sheets.

Score: A  I ran in three of these so far so I don’t have much to critique. They could possibly add more color stations to the run but the after party makes up for this as well.

colormerad.com

Warrior Dash 5K

A much harder clean up than Color Me Rad, Warrior Dash will leave you full of dirt (and in my case, mulch.) The Warrior Dash is full of obstacles that will having you crawling in dirt and mud, climbing up and down structures, and also getting wet. I ran the Warrior Dash this past August and my favorite was the Goliath, one of the featured obstacles. You climb up a rope net and reach the top of a 30-foot slide. The slide is super fast and fun and you land in cold, refreshing (dirty) water.

You really don’t get that dirty until the final obstacle, Muddy Mayhem. You can skip any obstacle, but my friends and I wanted to complete them all. In Muddy Mayhem, you army-crawl under barbed wire through a 100-foot long mud pit. In this case though, it wasn’t so much mud as it was water and mulch. I think the mud would have been better than having mulch pieces sticking all over my body when I was finished.

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Skye and I jumping over the Warrior Roast obstacle. (Yes, we are rewearing our Pumpkin Run 5K shirts, see below.) Photo courtesy of Warrior Dash.

Tip: There are volunteers stationed at each obstacle but there is nothing to help break your fall between an obstacle and the ground. Most obstacles aren’t that high though and I was able to complete them all. Fingerless gloves helped me keep my grip while climbing especially on structures like Bridge the Gap that was wet with water and mud.

Tip: There are hoses to rinse off and changing areas. Bring trash bags for your dirty clothes and extra towels.

Score: A-  I would definitely run in the Warrior Dash again. It would be nice if they keep changing up the obstacles and have actual mud, not dirty water and mulch.

warriordash.com (Click each obstacle to view tips on how to train for them.)

Insane Inflatable 5K

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Don’t be fooled by the high expectations that this cool looking start line will give you.

I was extremely excited for the Insane Inflatable 5K because I love blow-up obstacle courses and racing my friends on them. (For some reason, a lot of events at DeSales University had inflatables). Going into this 5K, I think my expectations were too high. The video on their website also portrays the 5K as more fun than it actually is. Overall, the obstacles are so similar you can’t differentiate between a lot of them. Most of them involve climbing up the obstacle and then ending with a slide. (Like the Warrior Dash, the slides were my favorite parts.) I guess there are only so many variations of inflatable obstacles but I was also picturing them to be longer than they were as well. With that being said, the obstacles do give your legs a work out though.

All-in-all, this 5K seemed to be hastily put together. We were running on rocky terrain one minute and then grass the next. There were large rocks that seemed hazardous and I think should have been removed for safety purposes and easier running. Most runs also have signs when you hit mile marks and this 5K did not. My boyfriend, Chad, and I felt the run wasn’t even spaced out to a 5K, it felt much shorter.

Score: C+  I probably won’t be running this one again. I was disappointed by the obstacles and would only consider running again if they added more of a variety.

insaneinflatable5K.com

The Great Pumpkin Run

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Skye and I wearing our matching shirts. (Together we are known as Skellie.) Our team name was Pumpkin Bread Heads after first meeting through working together at Panera.

The Great Pumpkin Run is you guessed it, held in the fall, and is always at a fall-themed farm or orchard. Because of the location the run is filled with pretty scenery. The 5K I participated in was at Savidge Farms in Mertztown, Pa., and we ran through the pumpkin patch and even part of the corn maze. There is also a Tough Pumpkin option where runners can hold a pumpkin up to 10 pounds during their run but that sounded more like hassle to me.

After the run, you are given complimentary apple cider and may enjoy the attractions of the farm. Since we already ran through most of the farm, my friends and I visited with the farm animals and left shortly after. This run is less exciting to me than others because if I’m paying money to run a 5K I want obstacles or color or at least money supporting a good cause; I can run a normal 5K on my own for free. This run is a fun way to celebrate the fall though. My friends and I also had a blast making our pumpkin-themed shirts to wear.

Score: B+  For being a fall-themed run, The Great Pumpkin Run succeeds; however, I’m not dying to run this one again. I think one experience is sufficient. I already have all the gear and see no reason for another pumpkin tech-jacket.

thegreatpumpkinrun.com

Read my most recent column in the Reading Eagle about how I got started running and my review of audio-guided runs on the Nike+ Club Run App.

Six months adulting after graduation down, the rest of my life to go

They weren’t kidding about the six-month grace period between graduation and starting to pay back student loans. Exactly six months from my graduation date (two days ago), I received an e-mail saying my first payment is due Dec. 10. With this six-month mark, I would like to reflect on the dreaded “adulting” so far.

A lot is the same since my July blog about my job as an obituary writer at the Reading Eagle. At the end of that July blog, I said I was excited to see the next steps I would take in my journalism career and I have taken more steps. I write up the to-do list calendar for the Weekend section, published every Thursday. I also contribute to “My 2¢” columns. These columns are published every day and writers rotate, so I am published about every two weeks and it’s great that I can write on whatever topic I wish to cover.

These “My 2 cents” columns are also why I am not posting on here as much because I’m saving ideas for there. My portfolio page is constantly being updated with my latest Reading Eagle columns though. Topics include my first Eagles game, a ghostly experience, the Lantern Fest, which disappointed compared to last year, shows to watch on Netflix and more.

At the end of August, I also began freelancing for Lehigh Valley Style magazine. I interned there last fall and they did not find a fall intern this year, so they asked me if I would like to act as the intern, but get paid instead of college credit.

Um yes!

At Lehigh Valley Style, we work so far ahead that when I started in August I was working on the December issue so I can’t wait to see my writing in print next month. (This will also be posted on my portfolio page.)

I thought life would be easier after graduation. I do have more free time (helloNetflix and books and running), but jobs, relationships and other stress replaces college stress.

I remember being so stressed about finding a job after graduation. I wasn’t hearing back from a lot of the positions I interviewed for or heard the inevitable “need more experience” line of rejection. I couldn’t imagine where I was going to find a job, but I did find one that I am grateful I like a lot.

Before college I was stressed about where I was going to go to college and what I would major in. But I figured that out and I’ll figure out the other unknowns in my life as well.

I see my friends less now that we are all working. I’m also still sort of on the job hunt. The main goal is a full-time job in journalism. Right now, I would love to stay at the Reading Eagle, but there isn’t anything currently open. So I wonder if I’ll stay or end up somewhere else. I don’t mind being part-time for now; I’m only a few months in. I’m looking for other part-time jobs in my field that will allow me to stay at the Reading Eagle and to finally quit Marshalls. I was hoping to escape retail before the holiday season but no such luck.

Life doesn’t just fall into place after graduation like I daydreamed it would. There are constantly unknowns in life such as where I’m going and what the future holds. Eventually the hurtle is overcome and the next one comes into the line of view. Sometimes I fly over them and sometimes I stumble, but I always keep going.

Dove ad aimed for diversity, not racism

There’s a lot of pressure creating content these days when everyone is worried about being politically correct. The recent Dove ad fiasco is a great example. Dove released a three-second GIF showing a black woman taking off her shirt to reveal a white woman, who then takes off her shirt to reveal an Asian woman.

Many social medias users speculated that this ad represented the stereotype of a “dirty” black person being cleansed to white. Perhaps if the order was changed and the white woman took off her shirt to reveal the black woman (model Lola Ogunyemi) people would not be in such an uproar. Changing the order would have changed the negative perception of “dirty” to clean; however, Dove wanted Ogunyemi to be the face of the campaign and I think that is commendable.

People are  too busy looking for something to be upset about and it’s especially easy to jump on the bandwagon when everyone is pointing fingers that Dove is racist.

I looked at this ad with the preconceived notion that it was racist as an article headline said. I understood what everyone was complaining about, but more than that, I saw that Dove was trying to represent diversity. Three seconds and they feature three different races; that’s pretty good in my eyes. Overall, I saw the message that Dove works for all women with different types of skin.

Even Ogunyemi didn’t think the ad was racist and said she is not a victim. She and other women were very excited about creating the ad as well.

“All of the women in the shoot understood the concept and overarching objective – to use our differences to highlight the fact that all skin deserves gentleness,” she wrote in an opinion article on The Guardian.

She also noted that her friends and family loved the ad and congratulated her on being the first woman to appear.

The 30-second TV commercial featured seven women of different ages and races. Instead of the T-shirts, they were in a bathroom answering the question, “If your skin were a wash label, what would it say?” Having the variety of skin types answer this question was more effective at getting Dove’s message across than the three-second GIF.

Dove took down the ad and released an apology saying they “missed the mark.” Their apology has upset people as well. Ultimately, I agree with Ogunyemi that Dove should have backed up their creative vision in the apology and explain their choice for choosing Ogunyemi as the face of their campaign.

Throw some glitter, make it rain: Kesha’s comeback with album “Rainbow”

Not knowing when Kesha would release new music again, animals were left to play her most recent 2012 album “Warrior” on repeat. After many battles in court with her longtime producer Dr. Luke, who Kesha has accused of sexual, physical, verbal and emotional abuse, a new album “Rainbow” finally dropped on August 11.

In order to avoid Dr. Luke, former CEO of Kemosabe records, as best as she could, Kesha did not work collaboratively with Dr. Luke but instead worked with other producers while he approved the music. Kesha still has to produce two more albums with Kemosabe Records until the contract is over.

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Cover art for “Rainbow.” Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

“Praying” was the first single released off of “Rainbow,” a 14-track album. The piano ballad has emotional lyrics about finding strength after abuse and gives many listeners chills. The song features Kesha’s raw talent throughout and she hits an impressive high note after the bridge.

Kesha’s second single “Woman” featuring The Dap King Horns has fun and catchy lyrics that her animals have become accustomed to and acts as an anthem for women.

“I’m a motherfucking woman, baby, alright. I don’t need a man to be holding me too tight,” she sings in the chorus.

In an exclusive Rolling Stone essay about the song, Kesha writes, “It was such a beautiful experience to write such a strong female empowerment song with two men, Drew Pearson and Stephen Wrabel, because it reinforces how supportive men can be of women AND feminism.”

The album opens with “Bastards,”a tame, slow-sounding song with untame lyrics about not letting the assholes in life win. The song introduces the fact that this album is a result of all the hardship Kesha has dealt with for the past three years. Her life was all over the place and so is this album, so it’s not exactly the classic Kesha people were used to with past albums “Animal,” “Cannibal” and “Warrior.”

Mixed in with the pure pop songs are “Let ‘Em Talk” featuring Eagles of Death Metal, which gives a punk/rock n roll vibe while “Hunt You Down” and “Old Flames (Can’t Hold a Candle to You)” featuring Dolly Parton and is full of country tunes. “Old Flames” was actually written by Parton and Kesha’s mom, Patricia Sebert, in 1978.

Despite not quite sounding like a cohesive album, it shows off Kesha’s range of what she can do and is held together with cohesive messages. Kesha is learning to move on from her past in “Learn to Let Go,” “Rainbow,” and many other songs throughout the album.

“The past can’t haunt me if I don’t let it. Live and learn and never forget it,” she sings in “Rainbow’s” third single, “Learn to Let Go.”

She’s also looking on the bright side in life in “Boogie Feat,” another song featuring Eagles of Death Metal, and “Boots.”

“I’m walking on air, kickin’ my blues,” sings Kesha in “Boots.”

Overall, Kesha has made quite a comeback on “Rainbow” with new sounds and bold, inspiring lyrics.

Her “Rainbow” tour kicks off Aug. 19 through Nov. 1 with many locations already sold out of tickets. Find all her tour dates at Kesha Official.

Why Freeform’s “The Bold Type” is a must-see show for women

Freeform’s “The Bold Type” revolves around three friends, Jane (Katie Stevens), Kat (Aisha Dee) and Sutton (Meghann Fahy) who work at Scarlet, a young women’s magazine. It’s been called the “bubbly ridiculous dramedy you need this summer” by Vanity Fair and “100% fresh” by Rotten Tomatoes.

Reasons to love the show:

(Small spoilers episodes 1-6 ahead)

It’s loosely based on real life

The drama/comedy series is loosely based on Cosmopolitan and is inspired by Joanna Coles, who serves as one of the executive producers for “The Bold Type” and was the editor-in-chief of Cosmo from 2012-2016. She is currently the chief content officer of Hearst Magazines, which owns Cosmo and also Good Housekeeping, Food Network, HGTV magazine, Esquire and many more.

You can read Scartlet’s articles

In the first episode, Jane is starting her first day as a writer for Scarlet after working as an assistant for four years. In each episode Jane writes a new article and faces different challenges in her writing from interviewing a stripper and almost being sued to revealing she’s never had an orgasm. Jane’s articles can be read on Freeform as well as articles by Jane’s love-interest, Ryan, also known as “Pinstripe,” who works for a competing magazine.
Read Jane’s article “Never had an orgasm? Me neither” here.
Read Ryan’s article “Why girls fake it and do we care?” here.

The show teaches you to follow your dreams. . . 

Sutton, like Jane, also starts out at Scarlet as an assistant. She knows she needs to move up in her career and applies for an advertising job, but realizes her dream is fashion. She works twice as hard to prove she is capable of being a fashion assistant without any fashion school experience.

. . . while remaining realistic

When Sutton is offered the fashion assistant job, the pay is cheaper than her old assistant job. Although her salary is not negotiable, Sutton negotiates other benefits in order to have her dream job while still being able to live in New York City.

Diverse characters

Kat, who is Scarlet’s social media director, becomes romantically interested in Adena, who calls herself a “proud Muslim lesbian.” Adena is a perfect balance between sweet and strong, which instantly makes audiences root for her. She is just the character America needs with the anti-Muslim sentiment present today.

Additionally, by having characters like Kat, Adena, Alex (writer at Scarlet) and Steve (Sutton’s boss in the fashion department), “The Bold Type” opens up other imperative issues like racism and deportation.

Tough yet vital issues

In addition to the topics already mentioned, “The Bold Type” discusses online bullying, breast cancer prevention, legality issues, and more. Despite these serious topics and drama-filled situations, the show is also full of funny and light moments, romance and friendship that make it a joy to watch.

Friends that last a lifetime

The bond between Jane, Kat and Sutton is what everyone wishes their friendships were like. Would you dislodge a yoni egg from your friend’s vagina? Exactly.

Another endearing friendship in the show is between the editor-in-chief Jacqueline (Melora Hardin) and Jane and Kat. Some may have expected a harsher editor like Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep) in “The Devil Wears Prada,” that audiences love to hate, but Jacqueline was a pleasant surprise. She is still a hardworking and intimidating boss; however, she genuinely cares about Jane and Kat by being supportive in what they do.

Lastly, but most importantly: feminism

Each episode revolves around feminism, or equality among men and women. Each of the six episodes aired thus far features Jane, Kat and Sutton standing up for themselves and topics they believe in. Whether they are negotiating salaries or launching a #FreetheNipple campaign, “The Bold Type” is truly inspiring, empowering and makes women want to take the “boldness” they see on screen and use it in their own lives.

Watch “The Bold Type” on Freeform, Tuesdays 9/8c.

My new job as an obituary writer is the opposite of depressing

I am a few weeks in at my new job as the obituary writer for The Reading Eagle newspaper. I know, I know, the job sounds depressing. That was my first reaction as well and I initially wasn’t very excited about my first job post-graduation.

First of all: death. Everyone is uncomfortable talking about it, but my job is actually positive. I get to read about the most impressive accomplishments these men and women have achieved in their lives and all their great and great-great-grandchildren who love them.

My job title is also misleading because I don’t actually write the obituaries. Family members often write them and funeral directors e-mail them to me. I edit the obituaries for AP style rules and style rules that are particular to the newspaper. I am also a fact-checker in a sense. For example, I check that a World War II veteran was born within dates that makes serving in the war possible.

Obituary writer is also an interesting position because although I work in the editorial department, I mainly work in the computer program AdBooker since obits are technically classified death obits.

Yes, my busy days at the paper rely on people dying, but I enjoy editing the obituaries. They make me wonder what I will accomplish in my life.

I never thought that I would be an obituary writer after college. I was hoping for a more exciting job title like investigative reporter or something where I could write more than I am now, but I am happy to have the opportunity to be working in the journalism industry. I applied to marketing positions and other jobs related to my communication major, but more than anything I wanted to end up at a newspaper or magazine, so I’m very thankful to be where I am.

One of my professors started out as an obituary writer and she has accomplished so much in her life as a journalist, author, and professor. So I know that this is only the first stepping-stone to my journalism career ahead of me.

I started at the bottom of journalism in high school and again in college and I know I can work my way back to the top to one day be an editor-in-chief again. But for now I’ll be working as hard as I can to shine as an obituary writer and welcome the next steps in my career that come my way.