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An Awkward Thanksgiving

Last year we had a wonderful Thanksgiving in Brooklyn with our friends Max and Jill, so this year is the first time I’ve really experienced a true American Thanksgiving with family and in-laws. We spent it at Mike’s mom’s boyfriend’s place in Southampton. His house is very cute, with brown wood shingles; sort of like Nantucket-style.

thanksgiving

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Best story ever?

I was out for dinner last Friday night at the Waverly Inn with my husband and another friend. It was a great scene, a who’s who of the fashion & media elite. Rumors have swirled that the Waverly had lost it’s cache, but it certainly seemed to be it’s normal celebrity-heavy self that night. We walked through the maze of closely aligned tables, nearly butt bumping everyone along the way. Which is saying something, because I’ve got a pretty small tooshie, LOL.

waverly

It felt so nice being there. The fire was lit, the room felt warm, and the ivy on the brick walls added a lovely feeling of being outdoors. As always, the food and wine were amazing, and the young modelesque boy who served us was very charming. The night had been amazing up until that point, but the best part of the night was yet to come. I can’t recall what we were talking about, but my husband began telling two inspiring stories that had me and our friend teary by the end. Read more

Will You be Part of History?

Last night I went to a great event at the Harvard Club in midtown. Everyone was decked out, including the two drag queens in attendance (they were rocking killer heels!). I love going to gay events, everyone is so nice, and so well dressed! Edie Windsor was the guest of honor. If you don’t know who she is, you should really find out. Basically, she’s the Martin Luther King Jr. of our time, making huge changes for the equal rights movement.

Edie Windsor and Hilary Rowland

We had a chance to listen to Edie’s personal  history, and whats changed since the momentous marriage equality victory. Most of us in the crowd had a hard time not tearing up when Edie spoke of her wife (who had passed away four years ago) and the love they shared. SO sweet!

I was lucky enough to speak with Edie, and for a woman in her eighties, she has remarkable presence. And so much energy! Read more

Matt Damon, Chris Rock, Kids and Happy Marriages

About an hour ago, at 9 AM, I went for a little walk to the Green Bean to get my interns some organic vegan muffins (they are so delicious!) On the way, I must have heard about five different kids screaming for one reason or another. Now, I know that having (or not having, rather) kids is a delicate subject. But here’s the thing: I think I would be a lot happier being childless. I like my life how it is. I don’t want it to change. My marriage is a happy one, and I don’t usually subscribe to this philosophy, but if it ain’t broke, why fix it?

Don’t get me wrong — I wanted kids until I was 30. Then I realized that I live in NYC where marriage-minded men are scarce, and marriage-minded men that would click with me (I may be easy to get along with, but let’s be real – I’m a strong woman) and my values and genuinely love me felt like finding a needle on an island of haystacks. So I started thinking: what would I do if I didn’t meet my soul mate? So being 30 and single in NYC forced be to evaluate my life. What did I really want, and how did I know that’s what I really want? And most importantly: why do I want that?

What I came up with is this: Read more

To be, or not to be….?

Hilary Rowland

I got a call today from an agent asking me if I wanted to do a photo shoot for a high-end jewelry brand. It’s been a while since I’ve gotten one of these calls, and my initial reaction was to say yes. The money was good, it wouldn’t take much time, and the idea of someone seeking me out for a shoot was very flattering. But then a funny thing happened. I realized that something inside of me was saying, “don’t do it…” I’ve learned over the years that my gut is pretty good, and I usually benefit by listening to it. So why was my gut telling me to say no?

As many of you probably know, I used to model when I was younger. I started working for Ford at the tender age of 16. However, it was a brief career, one that I ended just after my eighteenth birthday. The truth is, the initial excitement of being a model wore off pretty quickly. The constant traveling, endless castings, and many other factors made me want to focus on something else: having a true purpose in life. I’ve read a lot about happiness over the years, and have learned that one of the easiest ways people find happiness is by having meaning in their life. Read more

Sexy Isn’t a Costume

Every girl that has hit puberty has dressed as a “sexy” something at least once on Halloween. Maybe you were a “sexy” tampon, “sexy” highlighter or a stack of “sexy” pancakes—yes, the costume industry is getting really creative—but I assure you it was not sexy.

halloween sexy

I have five reasons why you thought you were being sexy and why you completely missed the mark:

1. Freezing isn’t sexy. It’s almost November and last time I checked, shivering was not sexy. Those freakishly intense goose bumps you have all over your thighs could be a symptom of a disease. People would be complimenting your creative, “sexy” Pope costume if they weren’t suggesting that you Web MD your wild goose bumps. Let’s say you did bring your giant coat just in case. You thought you were being super smart weren’t you? Well, you didn’t even wear it! You were too desperate to show off your super sexy costume, so you ended up holding your giant coat all night which turned out to be a huge burden.

2. Complaining isn’t sexy. Obviously, you were complaining about how cold you were or how annoying it was to hold your jacket you should’ve been wearing. You were mad that your opaque tights weren’t keeping you warm. Yea, those stupid tights—it’s definitely not your fault that you wore ass-less chaps and a Read more

Interesting Revelations About Entrepreneurs and Smart People

I’ve always been a serial entrepreneur. Ever since I was 15 and started my two first dot com startups. Not only that, but I always have several other business ideas I’m working on. Part of me wondered if the fact that I’m interested in so many things and have so many ideas has held me back. I mean, wouldn’t it be simpler and more efficient to focus on one thing at a time?

Well, apparently not. Funders and Founders (a great info-blog) analyzed all 1,426 billionaires in the world. From there, they segmented out the 960 that are self made and determined that 830 of them earned their wealth from more than one business (see the cool infographic below).

Also, according to separate study, I just learned that people with high IQs tend to set goals and read avidly (does online news count?), they lost their virginity later (ermm, yup), and think about thinking (ie. philosophy major – check and check). I must say, I’m happy to learn that I’m only freaky in a good way… Read more

Hey old people, what’s the deal with moth balls?

old people and moth balls

I was having tea at the St. Regis yesterday and ended up sitting next to an elderly couple. I watched them interact for a few moments before my guest arrived. They seemed really sweet, and I’d guess they have been together for 50 years or more. I hope all of us are that lucky! When my friend finally showed, I meant to move my attention away from them; however, I couldn’t ignore the pungent scent of moth balls coming from the husband. It was brutal!

It made me wonder Read more

When do muscles stop being sexy?

muscles

I was coming down 2nd avenue today and walked past a guy who was totally “jacked.” At first I thought it was fake, as though he was wearing a muscle suit or something. Once I could see it was real, I was too blown away not to take a picture. Good thing he didn’t turn around, I probably would have burst into a fit of nervous laughter, right before bolting. But it got me thinking…when do muscles stop being sexy?

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My 10 Best Bits of Life Advice

advice-teenage

If I could give my younger self some advice, I’d tell her a couple of things:

1. Stay open. Don’t be closed-minded. If someone has a different opinion than you, genuinely listen to it. They might be ill-informed, or they might have different values than yours, or  they might actually modify your opinion on a topic. Either way, part of growing is staying open and keeping your ideas somewhat fluid. That said, if someone says something based on contempt, feel free to tell them to shut the hell up.

2. Don’t take people’s opinions (of issues, politics, other people, etc.) as fact. Ask pointed questions – dig! – to find out what a person really believes. Often, you’ll find that people are just repeating things they’ve heard without really understanding it. For example, if they say they’re “fiscally conservative and socially liberal” ask “why fiscally conservative?” – what specific things do they think the government should cut back on? What social initiatives do you think the government should fund, and why?

Which brings me to: Read more

Is it unethical to watch (and therefore support) football?

So here’s the reality of the situation with football:

Besides the fact that kids in college often don’t feel like they have much of a choice regarding whether they play or not, for a long time the industry had/has been trying to hide the facts about the severe brain damage playing football often causes.

football-unethical

The NCAA makes almost a billion dollars in profit annually off the backs of these kids (while the kids unwittingly deteriorate their brains and shorten their lives) and yet they Read more

Feminism: a Dirty Word?

When Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer said she doesn’t consider herself a feminist, I thought: How is it possible that such an intelligent woman could say that? To be honest, I immediately lost a certain amount of respect for her.

Then I started thinking: WHY would she say that?

feminism

Let’s start with this: What does feminism make you think of?

Burning bras? Extremism? Hairy arm pits?
A jaded and unattractive woman in a pant suit? A beautiful women in a sundress? Read more

Danger in sending your kids to college…

college-loansSending your kids to college has to rank pretty high on the wish list of most parents. Much like owning a home, a college degree has been sold to the American public as a “dream.” Few would argue (including me) that attaining a degree provides an advantage for graduates to get the job they want. That was before I read the articles in Mother Jones and Rolling Stone (by Matt Taibbi, one of my favorite investigative journalists) on the college loan scandal playing out before our very eyes.

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Lessons Learned

Hilary Rowland

Hilary Rowland with possibly the best advice-giver on the planet.

  • In times of great and heady success, you are most vulnerable to failure… Stay humble and work even harder.
  • You don’t accomplish great things without audacity… You always have a choice between thinking big and thinking small… Why bother thinking small?
  • Despair and despondency are your greatest enemies and must be fought with dogged determination… Don’t get down on yourself. Read more
25
Sep
2013
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