According to Julie

Leave a comment

Moselle: A backpack that fits my life

Moselle backpack from Côte et CielI do not travel light. Leaving the house without water, an umbrella, sunglasses and an extra sweater makes me feel unprepared and vulnerable. My wallet is usually stuffed with receipts, coffee shop loyalty cards and really random mementos (never cash though). I never know when I might need dance shoes. And although I chose my own laptop because it was lightweight, Burson-Marsteller did not take this into consideration when they chose my work computer.

So I tend to lug a lot of stuff around back and forth between the office, dance class and home. Several well-meaning adults have told me I should trade my shoulder-bags and briefcases for a backpack. But backpacks make me feel like a tourist, or a little girl on her way to school or someone who thinks they’re going hiking when really they’re just taking the tram to the office. I see those people every day, with their water-proof jackets and sensible shoes, dressing like their children. We call them “allværsjakker” in Norwegian, those unnaturally colorful, weatherproof tents that some people just wear with everything – and wearing a big backpack feels like a few steps away from joining the allværsjakke-enthusiasts.

I’ve blogged in Norwegian about the allværsjakke style rules

Call me a vain, superficial person, and I will respond that I actually need to look like an adult when I’m so often the youngest person in a meeting. And feeling like an adult on my way to the meeting helps.

Enter Moselle, the backpack my dad got me for Christmas last year, and which I still take to work every day. It is to a standard backpack what my white trench coat is to other people’s “allværsjakker” – the fancy, professional, feminine, French version.

Côte&Ciel / Moselle Backpack / Paris from Côte&Ciel on Vimeo.

This is what I love about it:

– It has room for a laptop (in an inner pocket designed for 11” to 13” computers), my dance shoes, and all the other things I think I might need during the day

– It doesn’t make me look like a hiker or a tourist – although the jury is still out on whether I look like a little girl going to school

– It’s lightweight, small and fits close to my back, so I can turn around on public transportation without hitting someone in the face. Just look at how flat it is when it’s empty:


– The color goes with everything I own

– The zipper is positioned to be slightly more of a challenge for pick-pockets, compared to most backpacks

– After spraying it with the same protection spray I use on my shoes, it has stayed water-proof for the past seven months – although I plan on respraying after this week’s downpour.

– My dad was really excited about giving it to me, so I think he put a lot of thought into it, and it’s feels good to really, really appreciate a gift

One drawback so far: the zipper is a bit weak.

Moselle is from the French company Côte et Ciel. They make other backpacks and bags that look nice too. They didn’t pay me to write this, and they have no idea I am doing so. I just want to spread the word about something I like – and answer the “Where did you get that?” question once and for all.

I won’t be offended if we match, but you could always get the black version.

Related post: Dressed for anything

Update: Well Dressed Dad appreciates stylish backpacks as well and has plenty of recommendations on his blog. One post mentions Côte et Ciel and includes a photo of the boring backpack look.

Leave a comment

Links according to Julie

illustration photo of laptop and cocktail

I’ve been offline a lot in July, but here is some recommended reading:

“I was seven when I discovered that you were fat, ugly and horrible.” I wanted to blog about this open letter from Kasey Edwards to her mother who called herself fat. But it all felt too personal and weird, so just read Edwards’ writing instead. And then maybe read this other blog post I wrote about when our bodies make us feel fat, ugly and horrible.

16 exclusive perks of being a teenager around the mid-2000s This post made me think about how my media habits have been shaped by having experienced the evolution of social media.

Do you see blue I the way I do? This is the qualia problem, explained in cartoon form in Rookie.

The rich have less leisure time than the poor. This article in The Economist was part of what made me commit to getting more sleep.

This interview with a couple who have been long-distance for 3,5 years really put my own ten months of LDR into perspective. I also just found a recently-started blog chronicling a long-distance relationship. I love the blog title “Dancing long distance.”

Yes, you can even. The internet is changing our language.

The image in this post is from picjumbo, where you can get free high-res photos that you can use for your blog, presentation, website etc. Thanks, Viktor!

Leave a comment

Sitater fra gode norske bloggposter

Magnhilds Antiblogg:
“Det er én ting vi, og da særlig vi som lever priviligerte liv med perfeksjon, posisjon og prevensjon, bør innse. Og det er at de vi kjenner sjelden er representative.”

Olves blogg:
“Om jeg skal få realisert mange av mine ønsker og behov, koster det mye penger. Jobben min skal ikke primært tilføre livet mitt verdi, men finansiere alle disse andre tingene som gir livet verdi. At alle kan tjene godt på å gjøre nøyaktig det de vil er også en eksepsjonelt tøvete påstand.”

Vann og tårer i termosen:
“Også er det egentlig ingenting, bare ord. Og plutselig er det alt.”

Anette Basso:
”Jeg vet ikke hvor fri eller ufri min rosa kremrouge fra Max Factor gjør meg. Jeg føler meg ikke noe modig uten mascara. Bare mindre stilig og mer selvbevisst.”


English: These are quotes from Norwegian blog posts I recommend.

Leave a comment

Links according to Julie

laptop candle

Things I read and enjoyed online in the month of November:

Nurse reveals the top 5 regrets people have on their deathbeds.

My favorite contribution to the “having-it-all” debate so far, written by Stephen Marche (yes, a man):

The solution to the work-life conundrum is not “enlisting men” (as Slaughter puts it) in the domestic sphere. The solution is establishing social supports that allow families to function. The fact is, men can’t have it all, for the same reason women can’t: whether or not the load is being shared 50-50 doesn’t matter if the load is still unbearable.

How to live in London for under 5 pounds a day

Bad excuses for stealing photos on the internet

Business cards are old-fashioned. I once laughed in a guy’s face because he gave me his business card in a bar, confirming that he was too old for me (this was about four years ago). More recently, I have just told guys my full name and suggested they figure the rest out on their own (you’ll find 20 different ways to contact me if you Google my name). Even more recently, I’ve gotten actual business cards, that I only use in client meetings, to show I am an adult and people should listen to me.

Using Google glass for all the things you shouldn’t do with Google glass, like cheating.

People already think I’m angry all the time, because I don’t use enough of these: Smile Now my reputation as an angry person will get worse, because I also end my sentences with periods.

This blog post explains my writing is an addiction I’m glad to have. I wrote something very similar a while back.

why write

Source for candle and laptop image and source for quote-image.

Leave a comment

This Twitter bot just wants to give you a hug

feelbetterbot - Copy

@feelbetterbot finds people on Twitter who need a hug, or a compliment, or some other form of encouragement and automatically tweets them a friendly message. Or it used to. The bot keeps getting suspended.

The screenshot is not this Julie, although I do need a hug this weekend.

I love that someone is using awful spam techniques to spread joy.

saturday coffee

If you need a hug too, here is my advice on how to feel better.

Leave a comment

Links according to Julie

read instead

My online favorites in the month of October:

Massage therapist Dale Favier about what people really look like (naked).

Alli Read for Cracked on The 5 weirdest side effects of moving to a new country.

Maggie Mason – aka “Mighty Girl” – wrote about her definition of friendship – the comments have plenty of suggestions for what “friend” means.

Rachel Hills on rich people financing “cool” people:

This dynamic between rich people and less-wealthy-but-rich-in-youth-and-cultural-capital people isn’t anything new. Until the last century or so, patronage was one of the few ways artists and intellectuals could make a living. Nor is it necessarily sexual – at least, not always in a direct sense. My friend’s sixty-something multi-millionaire friend, by all accounts, didn’t try to have sex with her. He just wanted to be around her; to experience the ego-boost of being at a table surrounded by young women.

Someone found a secret surprise dungeon under their new apartment.

And a useful guide to saying no to “everything ever” by Alexandra Franzen.

You can buy the image as a print.

Leave a comment

Hele familien er bloggere

Jeg kan nå si at hele familien min er bloggere – til tross for at ikke alle oppdaterer like ofte.  Jeg har nemlig oppdaget at lillesøster Helene også er en blogger!

Helene skriver bloggen HelseHippie, og det handler om ernæring, supermat, hverdagsglede, naturlig hudpleie og husmortips. Her har hun skrevet i et år, men det er først nå hun har lagt ut bilde av seg selv og så lagt ut en screenshot fra bloggen på Instagram.

Pappa blogger på norsk på Tversover og på engelsk på Applied Abstractions. Begge steder går det i teknologi, bøker, nerding og pappas nerdete hverdag. Litt som min blogg, men ikke helt.

Mamma blogget før på Lena’s Knits & Pieces, men for tiden er det like greit å gå til nettbutikken Bare må ha det.

Lillesøster Jenny Marie skrev bloggen Made For Fun da hun var i USA i ett skoleår. Nå bruker hun mest Instagram.


Links according to Julie

I’ve had a very busy September – I can tell when my list of things I’ve read online is this short:

What if we treated every illness like mental illness? The cartoon below is from Buzzfeed’s surprisingly thoughtful collection of cartoons about depression. Cartoon by Susie Campbell.

every illness like mental

You might have heard of the Stanford Prison Experiment, in which students were divided into “guards” and “prisoners” to see how they would treat each other. The experiment had to be stopped early when it got out of hand. This website has the whole story.

Quora, where I procrastinate when I want to learn something, has a list of amazing knots/coincidences/events in the Harry Potter universe.

Ministry of Sound sued Spotify to stop people making playlists similar to Ministry of Sound releases. Is it time to stop expecting people to pay for playlists? If Ministry of Sound albums can’t give you anything more than what a Spotify user can, then maybe they’re not providing a good product. On the other hand, my boyfriend gets paid to play his Spotify playlists at dance venues, so that is definitely possible.

Slate-writer Amy Webb doesn’t post anything about her kid online – and neither should you:

“Knowing what we do about how digital content and data are being cataloged, my husband and I made an important choice before our daughter was born. We decided that we would never post any photos or other personally identifying information about her online. Instead, we created a digital trust fund.”

More internet recommendations here