APW Happy Hour

meg keene delivering keynote at alt

HEY APW,

Heyoooo! We, aka four members of APW (Meg, Maddie, Najva, and me) have been at Alt Summit all week. It’s my first Alt, and I’m going to go out on a limb and say it’s the best Alt, because hello! Rainbow walls and good vibes, unicorn floats and emoji hats, keynotes who keep it real and encourage your inner Hermione, and like, you know, champagne.

I’m going to take you guys on a bit of a journey here, a little behind the scenes, a little let’s-hold-hands-and-talk-about-why-we-love-APW time, cool? Cool. I have been working in weddings for a little over eight years, and have known about Meg and APW for a little over six years. I’ve worked for other wedding sites, I’ve always circled the bright orb of the center of the wedding universe that is APW, but until Meg casually asked if I’d want to work 5 hours a week while she was on maternity leave (word to the wise: the baby is 18 months and I’m full-time in Oakland these days), I had not tapped into APW, like, officially. I was, in other words, appropriately fan-girling.

Yesterday Meg gave an interview as a keynote at Alt.We had casually all spent a lunch discussing various talking points she might want to hit, and during that conversation there was a push to get a little political, dig a little deeper, to ask more of her audience than they might expect—but also to include plenty of how-to in the wedding industry, how-to in the real life, how-to make sure you always get to wear what you want to work, and to work from wherever you want. Because, you know, #dreams. #Goals. #Hashtag.

So Meg gets up there, and she’s kind of amazing already because APW, because she managed to perfectly coordinate her shoes with her lipstick (I still don’t wear lipstick, I’m 32, I guess there’s time?), and at like approximately minute ten, second eighteen (check it on Instagram stories, y’all), she begins to talk about the Why. The why of APW, the how, the who, the everything.  As you guys know, in this new political atmosphere in the US, this god-awful environment, this heightened experience of #whiteflail (I’m trademarking that one, y’all enjoy), APW has drawn a pretty clear line in the sand: we’re here to give you wedding inspiration, to motivate you to have the wedding you want to have, but we are also here to get shit done. We are not fucking around. The phrase “dude bros” was dropped multiple times to great glee, emphasis was placed on not shying away from putting your political views out there, and the moral of the story was hey: if you have a platform and you’re being silent, you’re still telling people something. And you know? That something is not the something we are in the business of.

And guys? I cried. Because obviously a) I really love my job, but b) I felt really proud of my job. I felt proud of my team, proud as hell of my boss, and proud of what has been built, what we are still building, and what has yet to come (sidenote: Najva felt the same way). And I’m writing all of this because I want you guys—whether you showed up here nine years ago or nine seconds ago—to feel equally proud. Because while I know we say it here and there, right now, in 2017? We all have serious skin in this game. And it was… it was just validating as all hell to hear my boss, my friend, this cool person calmly tell a group of people why they need to fight, to #resist, to take a stand. I have been writing online since 2000 (!!!) and working officially online since 2010 and you guys? This is not common.

This is a thing we’re doing. It often feels casual to go to my boss and be like, “Hey, I have an issue I really need to write about, can I do it?”, but yesterday made me realize: it’s not. This is a good space. This is a motivated space. This is a I’m-mad-as-hell-and-I’m-not-going-to-take-it-anymore space. I dig the shit out of it.

So, hey you. Hey girl (in a non-gendered way). Hey, thanks for being here. Thanks for coming back each week. Thanks for showing up, for speaking out, for supporting us while we do what we do. It’s good, it’s solid. I know when you read a site for years and years it can get to be like “OMG HEY this site! Glitter! Yay!” but trust: I am picky as all hell, and I am proud as fuck to work for APW. Dig.

We are doing this thing.

XO

stephanie

PS: If you haven’t watched Terrace House on Netflix, holy cow you need to. Najva and I have had one gigantic sleepover all week, spending our evenings watching Terrace House and drinking hibiscus margaritas in between rallying our moral and figuring out how the fuck to defeat Trump. Trust, it helps.

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JFREJ

New York Immigration Coalition

African Communities Together

Arab American Family Support Center

National Immigration Law Center

Legal Aid Society

AID Foundation

Mercy Corps

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Frederick Douglass is continuing his streak of recognition.

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How to #stayoutraged without losing your mind.

In the new White House, female staffers must “dress like women.”

Arkansas has a new law that would allow family members to sue to prevent a woman’s D&C.

Medicaid blocks are a bigger threat to U.S. healthcare than ACA reform.

It may only take 3.5 percent of the population to topple a dictator.

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Whether or not you believe in climate change, the laws of physics will continue.

Yesterday’s #BodegaStrike was powerful.

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