What I wore for a week of virtual job interviews, plus resources for talking about race with family

It’s Friday and I have just finished teaching my 3-week summer course on job interviewing. It was a strange time to teach the class with many students out of work due to coronavirus shutdowns, and then a sad time to teach the class with the country mourning George Floyd and rallying for racial justice, but we made it and I am SO PROUD of my students! I loved hearing about their career goals, talking cover letters, and practicing interviewing with them. I did, however, have to interview all 25 of them this week. Which was a lot of video conferencing. Don’t worry, I decided to change outfits like twice a day to deal with having to sit for so long. Here’s what I wore…

I can’t be the only person who changes 4 times a day while working from home? I have my morning walk clothes, my work clothes, my “the video calls are over time to be comfy clothes” and my workout clothes, which explains all the laundry I guess.

One thing I did this week was start adding inspiration images to my Stylebook app–you can add basically pinterest pins in the app and then use them to build the same outfit from your own closet. What I learned from doing this is that I love to pin “sporty” business casual–dress pants with t shirts and work dresses with sneakers overwhelm my pinterest boards yet I never dress this way! Why? So I decided this week to try it out.

I definitely loved dressing this way. I felt smart but also comfortable. Comparing my pinterest closet to my real closet, I noticed that my priorities don’t add up–I pin a lot of cute sneakers and lately more midi skirts for summer but when I go online browsing I always gravitate toward more shirts, which I definitely do not need.

I also had some fun with outfits that in my head I would wear out to dinner or a bar because it doesn’t matter if you wear shorts on a video call. My face is covered in most of these because at a certain point I just clicked “touch up my appearance” on Zoom and stopped doing makeup.

And I made some outfits that I didn’t totally love based on pinterest pins but at least I can say I tried.

Does this need a belt? I was unsure.

Anyway, I end these posts with what I read for the week. This week I want to highlight some resources for talking to other white family members about race. This is a very very sensitive subject with a couple of members of my family, and wading into what will certainly not be happy conversations is hard. But I’ve also been thinking a lot about how family is often one of the obvious places we confront different views while the rest of our facebook/instagram feeds are filled with similar opinions to our own:

-Unpacking the invisible knapsack is a great start that I also give to first year students because the question format invites white people to consider their unacknowledged privileges (you can also just ask family members the questions in conversation). One of the best strategies I’ve read this week is to discuss your own privilege and times you were unaware in the past as a way to get through to family.

-Here’s a good list of scenarios and how you can invite family to share common ground while thinking about the harm their comments can cause.

-Here are Ibram Kendi’s (How to Be Antiracist) tips.

-The main things I’ve been thinking about: empathy (yes, you have problems, but they aren’t caused by your race), repeat messaging (how can we talk about race casually and not as a special topic–plus, persuasion requires many repeat attempts), and imperfect messages (it’s important to think about the big picture but people often reject messages that are too “extreme” for them so small steps are a place to start with family).

-Finally, today is Breonna Taylor’s birthday–please consider signing the petition asking that the police officers who killed her are charged and fired.

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