Monday, December 9, 2013


On the Army Wife 101 facebook page, wives often discuss how they aren't making friends. It can be hard, I know, but luckily I know the right place to go, no matter where I am. It's also been my saving grace moving to Fort Rucker when I married my Army hubby and working in Birmingham during the week. Step in, The Hash House Harriers.

If you are a military wife and you want to meet other people in the area, puhlease, go to at least three of these. I guarantee even if you don't like it, you WILL make AH friend.


In Finding Friends Part 1, I discussed how to tell whether a person has your humor by utilizing fart noises. Here's something better- join a drinking club with a running problem. They will laugh at your fart noises every time.

But let's backtrack.

If you move around, travel for work or pleasure, and aren't a stick in the mud, then you absolutely must seek this group out.


An international group in most cities and every military base (yes even around the world. My husband starting going to his in Russia, and I know several people who started in Korea). You pay a cheap sum of money, usually 5-10$, for a decent if not excessive quantity of alcohol and a good time. If you don't want to drink (or drink much) you don't have to, but I certainly don't see why not.

The "Hares" or trail leaders, lay a trail by making marks with flour, which the pack of runners decipher, follow, and inevitabley leads to beer or other goodies.

Here's Wiki if you really need it. 

BN= Beer Near
T/E = Turkey Eagle Split. Turkey is an easier trail, Eagle is for the bad asses
--l-l-l-->  = True Trail, you're right on
YBF = You've been F*cked. We led you down a wrong path
O = the trail can go in 369 degrees, etc.
There are stops along the way where everyone gathers for a drink, and then you continue on until you reach the end of the trail which has more beer.

I know it sounds hard involving running and beer, but if people are doing it
while they're drinking how difficult can it really be. 

Going to a hash is a break from life. It's an opportunity to let loose, meet interesting people and have a good time.

It's a great way to learn a new city, or find places in an old city you never knew about. Each trail is led by a different hasher, and following them- or making your own trail, can lead to amazing discoveries.

After living in Seattle for a year, I had no idea this park, and amazing view, was
only blocks away from my apartment until I hared my first trail. 

It's also a fantastic way to find new activities and bars- besides yelp. There's always an "On-After" and often it's at a different place, since you're always in a new area of town.
This gathering happens the first Tuesday of
the month outside The Plaza Bar
Hashing on a Tues. With the Vulcan
H3 in Birmingham  we can across these

Boys can wear dresses without shame. There's several charity runs, like the Red Dress  Run (The New Orleans Red Dress draws around 10k annually), the Green Dress, etc, where all the profits go to charity. And what's funnier than a bunch of dudes running around the city in a dress? Tip: Ladies, if you meet a guy comfortable enough to do this, you should snatch him up. Confidence is a great feature in a dude. 
Seattle Red Dress Run 2011 Front Runners

Also, it's kind of exercise.

A Chicago Thristday Hash Trai. 3 Miles, 3 Beer stops. 
Some people walk, some people run, some people jog. The trails vary in length, but it's as much of a "work out" as you want it. Or don't, whatever. Because we're in it for beers and camaraderie dirty jokes and even dirtier songs. 

Did I mention guys get to wear kilts? We love kilts. 


Holy cow the people. They are from every walk of life you can imagine. Rich, poor, cell phone fixers, doctors, advertisers, therapists, cooks, bamboo fence and furniture builders, military etc. People have a zillion different interests from brewing to cycling to gaming to you name it. 

Everyone is there to let loose. You know, no matter what hash you go to, they are there for a good time, friendship, and will always help you out. If you make fart noises when someone bends over, they will likely laugh.

On that note, you can't be easily offended. If you are, this isn't the place for you (Hence saying you need to be "FUN" above.) And there is a lot of offensive, but funny stuff.

We are jokers. These are things we tell each other often. 
The network is amazing. If you're traveling, odds are one hasher will know another in that city, if not a non hasher who will hook you up with crash space. And if you don't need it, they will be your tour guides. 

INSTANT FRIENDS. I have no idea why there aren't more military wives that do this. There's always a hash around military bases. It's amazing.

When I moved to Seattle I only knew my Dad's friend/old boss and his wife. They sent me to a hash trail, and I made my first and best friends in Seattle (not to mention it's where I met my husband).

When I moved to Chicago, the hashers instantly set me up. I was invited to parties and happy hour, for runs and other activities. Then came Fort Rucker and Birmingham, and I'm sure by now you get the point.

And of course, the very first thing I did when I found out I was going to Fort Bliss was look up the Hash there- the Border Jumpers. 

After a year in Seattle, all of these people through me a goodbye party. They are all hashers. 


Hare: Trail leader

Hounds/Pack: The runners

Kennel: The "group" or club" for instance, Seattle has several Kennels- The Seattle Hash House Harriers, Rain City (only hashes the last sunday of every month, usually out of the city), No Balls (The all-girls, once monthly hash) etc. And each one has their own logo, patches, and "mis management"

Shiggy: Going off trail, or off side walk. My favorite trails and shiggyfilled. Unfortunately it depends on the Kennel you are at, because downtown Chicago you're not likely to find a lot of that. However, the more creative the Hare, the more likely you'll have something interesting. I've had "shiggy" that went under bushes and had people climbing over walls.

You don't wear new shoes for 2 reasons:
1) Shiggy. I have gone up rivers, through mud, forests, floated rivers, and mountains. It's awesome.
 2) By wearing a new shoe you are in violation and must drink your beer. 

ON-ON!- You'll hear this screamed from all directions on trail. It means they have found the correct trail (maybe)

Racist: No, you don't wear white pointy hats. If you're a racist, that means you like running, and probably run outside the hash. I'm a racist because I enjoy being FRB or FBI (Front Running Bastard/First Bimbo In) and thus race in the hash, run regularly and do races. You might be accused of racism and have to drink if you wear racist attire, such as a 5k shirt.

Nerd Name: Your real name is your nerd name. Because the group was originally founded by British Marines and there is a rule where enlisted cannot fraternize with officers, everyone gets nick names. After you've been hashing and done something stupid/funny, the group circles up and gives you a new name.

The naming of Aquaharious, a Vulcan Hasher.
You can ask her why she was named that.
Here I am "Christening" her with her hash name. 

IN CLOSING- I don't know why more military wives don't do this. Aside from the kids, and the husband getting deployed and that being possible "bad news" if you can't control yourself, and being easily offended and all. Whatever, if you can get crazy wasted and the marine corp ball and dance on a table, then you can hash.

Thursday, December 5, 2013


Yesterday I sat in the hotel room watching a 1000lb+ person in bed  on TV and feeling just as large and immobile. Even though I worked out I felt lazy and gross because I didn't run.

Running used to be my happy place, and my solace. I looked forward to it every day. During marathon training when I did those 16-22 milers it was tough but I was always happy once I got going.

For some reason I just can't get up the motivation anymore. 3 miles feels like freaking forever. When I used to do 10 a few times a week no problem, it makes me feel like a pansy.

The thing I like about running is the ability to constantly improve and see the progress. With Personal Records, there are things to conquer. And conquering is something I like to do. I'm a competitive person and in my brain I compete in almost everything. When I run on a well traversed path I call it "Lions and Gazelles" and consider everyone in front of me prey, counting the people I pass and silently laughing evily inside as I go by.

Weird? Yes. Nice? Probably not. Whatever. It's motivating! What happens when I get passed on the path you say? Well that doesn't happen often. Because that's what it's like to be AWESOME. BWHAHAHAHAHA.
This is me. At work. In a snuggy. Now there is no reason to doubt my awesomeness. 

Anyway, Lions And Gazelles doesn't do it for me anymore. Especially since, do to lack of practice, I've become slower and being someone else's Gazelle doesn't appeal to me.

I need a new activity. The problem is that when you're almost 29 years old, it's hard to pick up a new sport. It's not like I can join a soccer or LaCross team. Imagine all the swearing directed at me. I can barely walk without falling on my face and now there's a ball I'm supposed to hit with my feet?! Even if I wanted to play soccer, that would take decades of practice that frankly I don't have.  It'd end up like 2nd grade when my parents enrolled me in AYSO soccer and I sat as Goalie or defense picking flowers/getting hit in the face with the ball.

Because at 7 I didn't know swear words yet. 
Unlike running, sports like soccer and lacrosse take a team to help you get better, and it's harder to see improvement. There's not really "milestones."

Right now I do Crossfit, which has PRs and you can see a lot of improvment- but while I'm interested in getting strong I'm not interested in getting bulky. Also, it's not a competitive sport, it's a tool that helps me run and swim faster, and not suck at the bike so much. I find it enjoyable, but it's not the end all be all and the Crossfit Games are never something I'll do.

Recently, drinking by our fire pit at 3am with a friend of hubbys, it was suggested that I try rock climbing. The great thing about the military so far is the free gym, and now the free climbing wall. I already have a harness from my first and last mountain climbing expedition, strong legs are key, and it's something I can work to get better at on my own or with a friend.

I'm going to head to the climbing wall this friday and check it out. Maybe this will be the answer to my problem- not to mention with all the climbing around El Paso it'll give me something fun to do, and a way to make friends outside the military (which is something I always look for).

The second thing I'm looking into is Muah Thai which is essentially kickboxing. I once dated a boxer and those work outs are TOUGH. The only problem I foresee is that I once did Karate and I didn't do so well. I tend to be very passive aggressive and it takes a lot, or alcohol, to get me going. Also fighting is not something I'm good at.

Sadly I'm not even kidding. Although I'm not afraid to bite. 

Senior year of high school this girl wanted me to leave a party because I was talking to her ex-boyfriend (even though my boyfriend was at the party too). She threatened me and said to leave but I'm a stubborn pain int he ass and I didn't. She made good on her threat and punched me. We were split apart immediately but if nobody had grabbed her I would have ran away. Also, I'm a pansy, and I cried (later, out of sight- I have a little bit of dignity).

Getting punched and kicked doesn't seem fun- but punching and kicking of course does. It's something to try and who knows, it may come in handy one day. After all, I'd rather get a punch in the face than be involved in a hair pulling cat fight.

If anybody else as any ideas, feel free to add!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013


At this time last year, I just got done doing a pin-up themed photo shoot. It was one of the best things I've ever done for myself- even though it was a Christmas gift for my husband-then-boyfriend.

In September, he left for three months of training, during which time we were not allowed to speak save for a handful of 30 minute phone calls (all which went by too fast) and letters. Because of his schedule he was only allowed to write me five letters, and I wrote him twice a day. 

And the only thing he wanted for Christmas was pictures of me, so I decided to go all and get boudoir photos.

I was a little worried because I'm pretty uncomfortable with my body. Even  though I had lost about 15 pounds for the shoot I still didn't feel all that good about it. I don't even like wearing bikinis, and I hate most photos of myself fully clothed-  how was I supposed to take photos half naked? 

I spent months planning. I gathered three outfits- One a corset from Victoria's Secret, one an "Army outfit" where I ordered a short camo skirt, pasties, patches with his last name on them, his old unit patch etc, and the last one was just an american flag and some starry underwear. Eeep. 

My friend came down from Milwaukee to do my hair and I learned how to do Pin Up make up from the girls at the Mac Counter at Macys (and bought quite a lot of stuff too as well as gained a fun new obsession for fake lashes). 

It was a lot of cash, but what I received in the end, to me, was mind blowing and priceless. It was more than just photos, it was self confidence I never really had. And for the first time in my life, I really felt pretty. 

Lori, the photographer, made me not only feel comfortable, but gorgeous while she was doing the shoot. It was amazing. I was at ease, happy, and excited. 
I think EVERY girl should go out and get these done. Whether big or small, short or tall, for a boyfriend/girlfriend/spouse or just for you. It is the best, most uplifting experience and gift you can give yourself (not to mention your significant other might enjoy them too!). 

I was a little nervous about posting these photos, especially the one with the flag, thinking things like "What would my mother say?, Would I want my family to see these? Will people think these are supposed to be private?" But in the end, I love them, I am proud of them, and they are just as much for me as they are for him. 

If you're looking for the lady who did my photos, her name is Lori  and her studio is called Revival Pin Ups in Chicago. I also hear the lady who did my wedding photos, Beth - Endless Expressions Photography By Beth does some too and she's in Pensacola. 

It's only been a year and I'm already thinking about when I want to do one again. 

Get on it girls! 


Every once and I while I bounce around military wife websites out of curiosity. As  prepare for the move to El Paso I wonder about the lives of the women postings, how they deal with moves, making friends, and what they do to keep things interesting.

Yesterday I came across this article about keeping in shape during the holidays, and it's the most vague useless information I've seen in awhile. Honestly it makes me angry because as someone who is learning to write a blog, I try to only write about things I know about, which she clearly doesn't know much about working out.

Anyway, I left a comment on her page and I decided to put it on my blog and add to it a little bit:

It's hard to get motivated during the holiday season. It's hard to get off your butt and leave the house and it's hard when you're visiting somewhere and don't have a gym- so here's some ideas where you don't need any equipment. You can do it in a hotel, in a house, or on a lawn.

1) Get the "Just 6 weeks" app. It's a program to improve your squats, sit ups, push ups, pull ups if you can do them (or have a bar and a band), and  dips. It's supposed to get you to 100 push ups, 200 sit ups, 150 dips, 200 squats in 6 weeks. While it's harder for women to achieve those goals because our bodies don't work that way, it's a great work out you can get in quick and doesn't require any equipment beyond a bar or a table.

2) Do a lot of balance work and stability training like lunges - backwards and forwards, and wind mills and jumps

3) Remember you can do burpees anywhere. They are awful but great.

4) If you're traveling in a car, or just at home, buy a kettlebell. They are the BEST work outs and incredibly versatile. Here are 22 work outs you can do with kettlebells. WOOT! 

5) Make up your own work out circuit. For example when I'm bored I do 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 of burpees, jumping squats, push ups etc, (so you would do 10 burpees, 10 jumping squats, 10 push ups, then 9 burpees, 9 jumping squats, 9 push ups and so forth).  You can really do that with any excercise. Maybe in between each "set" you run around the block as fast as you can.

And please, please do not listen to that woman in the article and "dial it down." Dialing it down because it's the holidays is stupid. You can get hurt at any time so Cowboy Up and get out there. You'll feel better about eating fudge and those delicious pumpkin spice lattes if you do!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013


A lot of people don't understand what advertising people do.What they do understand is the show MadMen, which is how I usually explain my job.

But nobody really wants to know about my work. They want to know if the alcohol, sex, and craziness are all true. Fortunately, and unfortunately, it is.


This is what I get asked them most. In almost every episode everybody is drinking whiskey or beer during all hours of the work day.


100% true. At one agency I worked at, 3pm was beer 30. At another it was usually around 4. Whiskey and hard liquor were reserved for later in the night. And there is ALWAYS free beer. I loved one particular agency because we always had a cooler of really nice micro brews. At another they filled the fridge every Wednesday with Coors, High Life and Miller. My current agency has a keg going at all times.  If it was a late evening, we might go through a half a bottle of whiskey. There was one night my partner and I went out and bought bottles of wine and just drank straight out of those. We might sound like alcoholics, and we probably are, but at least we're functioning.


Roger and Don have a lot of drunken, philosophical conversations. Their's usually revolve around work and women and it doesn't get more out of hand than that.


Our philosophical conversations are a lot like what you think a teen age boy pot head would talk about. They are often random and get disgusting fast. Two of my Art Directors and I had a reoccurring one where we discussed our plan for the end of the world. We had a boat and the three of us had jobs. The guy would captain our boat and grows the weed and farms food on a secret island which we will use to barter. I'm heartless and would take care of the killing. The second girl on the boat would get pregnant over and over and her "magic power" would be a constant supply of breast milk, which since we clearly wouldn't have a fridge we would keep in a bag nestled within an old alligator head in the water to keep it cool.  Because pregnant people have out of control hormones we'd keep her in a cage at the top of the boat, with a stripper pole because we hear that's great exercise.



Everybody on the show hates the account dudes, especially Pete Campbell. Why? Because they deal with clients who, most of the time drive creatives insane. Pete's job is to make the client happy, which pisses off everybody else on a regular basis.

We fight alllll the god damn time. We might like each other out of work, but at work is a different story. Account people think Creatives are babies, we're drunks, complain about everything, don't care about what the clients wants and just what we want and are hard to deal with. Creatives think Account people are just working for the client, they don't care about the work or creativity, are uptight pains in the asses and zero fun. I've been in places where I've hated the account people, but I've been at places where I have loved the shit out of them and it's been amazing. But there're ALWAYS fights. 

Ex 1: A head account guy didn't like the creatives wearing snuggies. Especially to meetings. They were no longer allowed on the "meeting/account" floor so the head creative director told everyone to wear their snuggies to every single meeting possible.

Ex 2: A Creative Director and Account Guy got into a fight. The Creative Director told the account guy work would not commence until he left the floor and never returned. He never returned. 

Ex 3: An account person asked for a creative director to increase the logo by 10%. The CD yelled at her to get out of 1985. 

Ex 4: A head account guy flipped out on a creative team because they were completely off strategy. A notoriously drunk art director tried to clear the mood with a snarky comment and told the account man "John your suit looks nice today"  and he responded "No it doesn't. It's a shitty fucking suit. It doesn't even fit right" and left. 

Ex 5: I once told an account person I don't care about "the target audience" and to "fuck their face"

Nobody has every gotten fired because of any of this. 



Ok, it's the era where everyone wears suits. Even the Creatives look nice in their fully buttoned up flannels and slicked back hair!


The above photo is of me, at work in the lobby, in my snuggy. I wore this every where. We are not a very groomed crowd. At least the creatives aren't because we don't usually deal with clients. I've known Creatives who keep nice shirts folded in a drawer just in case a client comes in. At an agency I interned at we once got an email that said "even if you are at the office for 2-3 days straight you NEED to bring a change of clothes and at least shower."

Also I have a dollar pinned up by my desk from when I was sleeping on the subway in the morning, curled up on a seat wearing a ragged hoodie hungover. Someone thought I was homeless and put a dollar in my lap.


There's constantly tired creatives at the office. Peggy and her partner are always there late at night, being either bribed or yelled at by Don to get it done because that's their job.


100% true. At one point I realized I had worked almost 100 hours in one week. Weeks like that are insane and rare, but working till 2-4am isn't unrealistic. Neither is sleeping at the office. At one agency my partner and I made bunk beds out of my desk. At 5pm we'd turn off the lights and nap for an hour. He slept on the top of the desk and I slept underneath, George Costanza style with pillows stolen from various couches. 




It seems like every episode the execs head to lunch to talk business but mostly to drink. This is my favorite three martini lunch, where Roger through up after consuming a lot of booze and a lot of oysters. I'm pretty sure this is something that would happen to me. 


Oh wait. That has happened to me. Only it was muscles and whiskey instead of oysters and martinis. That said, three martini lunches and drinking lunches don't happen all that much anymore, although it depends on where you work. At a small agency I worked at if it wasn't crazy we'd go out for 1-2 beer lunches maybe once a week. If it was the germany place it was more like 2-4 beers if you actually count the size of the glass. I've heard of people going out more regularly but the truth is we're so slammed during the day it's hard to get away to eat lunch anywhere besides your own desk. Not to mention it's difficult to drink at lunch and then stop. At least for me, I go into nap mode and it's difficult to get any work done. I suppose this is why people smoke a lot more pot in advertising than drink. 


We didn't start seeing drugs till the later episodes, but that was more a sign of the times. Especially Roger and his acid trips. But hey, it looks fun right?


I would say 8 out of 10 people smokes weed. A lot of weed. And because of the wonders of technology and e-cigarettes, you can now smoke weed in the office.  Not to mention the coke. It depends on the agency, the client you have and the hours you work, but there's a lot of it going around. I have never, and will never do coke, but I can understand why Creatives do it. Besides that it's apparently fun, we work in a high pressure industry. The demand to constantly come up with creative ideas, each one better than the next, on top of a lot of hours is stressful. It's not an excuse, but probably no worse than all those authors who are drunks.

To show you how extensive it is, at an office party at a bar one creative proceeded to buy coke using a credit card, and did a line off the bar. At the last minute he realized this was bad because EVERYBODY was there, and had an "oh shit" moment. The following week he came in to work and kept his head down. Our boss came by, touched his nose, and asked if he had a good time, then walked away.


I don't really have to go into this, I'll just leave you with this quote from Roger that I got from "ROGER STERLING'S 25 MOST SEXIST QUOTES" - When God closes a door, he opens a dress.


If there were cameras and video recorders half of every office would be arrested. Except at my agency in Alabama, because southerners are polite. There aren't that many women creatives, and even though it'll anger ladies to hear about it, we don't think of it as harassment. It's normal, and even laughable. One of my bosses used to say "I only hit on the women I know won't act on it." But that didn't stop him from coming up to me when I wore my warrior princess boots and say "oh the things those boots make me want to do."


In this episode they get super drunk at an office party, ride the lawnmower from the John Deere client, and chop of someone's foot. Throughout the office parties on the show, they tend to get super wasted, go home with each other, have sex in office rooms, etc.

While I've never seen anybody lose a limb, the rest is true. We know how to throw a party. Whether big agency or  small, things tend to get out of hand. My two favorites are the Crispin Porter Holiday Party, which is a MASSIVE and all out costume party. They have brought in major bands and singers, and the year I was there it was 80s themed and hey transformed the entire agency. Young MC played and there was a room made of candy.

 My favorite party though has been, hands down, the Leo Burnett Breakfast, which takes place the first week of December.

"The Breakfast" as it's called was started by Leo Burnett himself. He used to gather everybody in  a room, and give a speech. In later years extra police as well as Macy's workers staffed the streets around the agency. The police because of thousands of out of control drunkness, and the Macy's staff because the bonuses were so big, the wives would meet their husbands in the lobby, take the cash, and go shopping. The bonus's don't happen any more, but in the hey day of advertising I've heard of people buying boats with it. 

Here's what happened last year: The night before my bosses put a bar in the elevator "The Up Down Lounge. Lifting Spirits Since ____" Some people have a drink on their way out of work or going to another floor, others stay in there, drink and socialize till it's over. If you've never gotten drunk in an elevator I suggest you try it. 

At 730am the next day my group shows up dressed to the nines- this is crazy considering most of us don't show up to work until 10-11am for work. We drink a lot of whiskey/cocktails and take a swig of green liquid out of a big golden fish. That year, at 10 we smuggled bottles of champagne into the Chicago Theater where our bosses put on a 2 hour original musical for us tat most of us didn't pay attention and got in trouble for continually popping champagne bottles. Next we went to a bar and drank more. At 1230 the entire agency filed into The House Of Blues where we ate and drank as much as we could from the open bar. On the dance floor masks and feathered hats fell from the sky as live bands played and we danced for hours, drinking more liquor and if you were me and my account person, getting threatened to be kicked out for dancing on the stage. At the after party, my boss put a 1000$ bounty on a man's pants. After drinking for 15 hours I had no problem storming into the men's bathroom and demanding the pants. He gave them up. They were rainbow sequined overalls. I put them up and danced around a stripped pole in front of my boss to prove I had them. Then I found out it was the CEO's pants I'd stolen. I did receive $1000 check the next week. Oh, and most everybody went home with somebody. Like Vegas, what happens at the Breakfast, stays at the Breakfast and spouses/significant others are not allowed. In any other industry many of us would have been fired. 


Maybe it was just the sign of the times, but people just don't seem hungry in MadMen. Maybe it's because d student loans didn't exist to completely desolate your finances, but for whatever the reason no one seems to scavenge. 

When a client comes to town, catering comes. The entire day, we walk by slowly, sniffing at the air to see. Are their sandwiches inside? A jackpot of burritos? Or the worst. A fruit plate and coffee. WHO THE HELL EATS FRUIT ANYWAY. I have survived days by eating nothing but leftovers from client meetings. 

At Leo Burnet they have the most awesome thing ever, which takes all the fun out of stalking but turns every day into something like Black Friday at Best Buy. It's called the Food Alert Network. When there is leftover food, someone posts it to the facebook page. And then you have to get there first. There are 35 floors in that building, and elevators that only go from 21-35 and 0-21. It can get ugly when two starving 23 year olds, surviving on nothing but ramen, both go in for the last sandwich from Hannah's Bretzel. 

Monday, December 2, 2013


In the few short months I've been a military wife I've quickly learned I'm an anomaly- and by that I mean at age 28 I don't have, and not sure if I want, any children. From here on out it seems like the majority of couples have kids, and have had them at what I consider to be a young age. 

And I don't have any problem with that. Your life, your choices. And the life of a military personal naturally attracts certain types of people. As a wife you're encouraged to stay at home because of the constant moving- and because of free health care and housing often you can. Personally, I struggle with the cost of raising a child and right now prefer to spend money on traveling, Sephora, etc. That doesn't mean we won't have a child one day, but right now it's a good time to be selfish. 

Life in advertising is quite the contrast to military in terms of family (and everything). It's a young, free-for-all world. It averages an age of 28-30, the hours are crazy, the parties are insane, and alcohol and drugs are a constant. The majority of people are young, single, and childless.

Of course the older you get, the higher you go in the chain the easier it is to get married and have children, and there are plenty of people in advertising who [eventually] do just that. They just happen to be men. 

In my entire career so far, I've only known one other female Creative who is married, one who is engaged, and none who have children. To get to the top of our field you have to put your job first, and these days men are still afforded that luxury more than women.

Like the military, you move quite a bit. We don't stay at the same agency for very long because leaving is how you get a raise and a promotion. Most people only stay at the same place 1-3 years unless it's a big agency and they switch clients. If we're offered the right job we'll move to wherever it is, no matter what your significant other says. It might me once in a lifetime. And who's going to say no to a job in Portland, or Amsterdam?

All of this, on top of never knowing what time you'll be home causes a lot of break ups, and a lot of divorces.  When a guy wants to have kids, he might miss a lot of their childhood. Once, a Creative Director's daughter asked over Skype where he was living. His answer was the office. When a woman wants to have children, most of the time she leaves her career entirely. 

That said, beyond family, family friends, and older co-workers, I don't know many people who have kids. The friends that do I have known for years, and when I see them it's been a planned visit at least a month in the making since I live out of town.

 In becoming a military wife, I've done a complete about face.

Here, while there's still a lot of young people, they feel MUCH younger to me. The majority of people have children and most women are stay at home moms, believing that being a military wife is a job (I won't get going on this, I'll just say that it's not a job. It's marriage and love and it's a choice. Sometimes its work, but it's never a job.).

Most of the women make friends through play dates and events, and at house parties hang out in a separate room with the children away from everybody else. It feels weirdly segregated from the rest of the world and I have no idea how to interact within it let alone walk INTO it. 

I realize becoming a parent doesn't make people aliens or lepers and it's not that I'm not good with kids or don't like them- I do. But, when a child is born social circles change. Life revolves around youth sports, play dates, and outings together. When you have a child, you have made the commitment to become selfless, and the way you live reflects that. 

Right now, as someone who is still selfish, that is all far from my understanding, and I honestly wonder if I'll find anything in common with these women. While it's not true, for some reason I imagine them all attached to their children by handcuffs, unable to come out when I call, come on fun vacations, or drop everything for happy hour or an afternoon hike. 

I suppose part of me is worried it will be harder to make friends since I won't be in the same social circles or share the mentality that children are the greatest thing to happen to you. I also feel like an ass because I don't want a bunch of kids bouncing around me when I'm trying to have a conversation. Really I just want to find people who'll jump at going rock climbing/hiking, happily have happy hour, get a mani/pedi with a bottle of wine, or come out on a weekend vacae. 

In the greater scheme of things, when I really think about it, it's really just wondering how my puzzle piece fits in to the army wife life.