ASH AMBIRGE

Author, CEO & Founder

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Paper In Your Coffee

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

There are some people who don’t get the whole concept of an assembly line. You know who I’m talking about – those hanyacks at the Starbucks who come up beside you at the milk station, their panties in a bunch, tapping their foot, doing the hokey pokey at 8 o’clock in the morning because they are trying! to get around you! to use! the creamer!

And then the pressure’s on. Oh is it on! You start to get flustered. They’re staring at you. You’re holding them up. You’re holding everybody up. You drop your keys. Put the elbow of your suit jacket right in the puddle of non-dairy soy. Say “shit” out loud instead of under your breath. And just as you’re about to finish up—just one last packet of sugar to go!—it happens.

The corner of the sugar packet goes-a-floatin’ right into your coffee. It does that wet paper thing and then sinks, so now you’ve got to take your hand, make the universal stop sign to the feral dogs behind you like you’re some construction worker on I-95, and reach over to grab one of those bullshit little red wannabe straws, all so you can try and fish out this ridiculous piece of paper before they start a mob scene behind you and Starbucks burns to the ground.

There’s always going to be somebody on your ass, pushing, pleading, demanding, needing—whether you’re in Starbucks, in a business meeting, at a family reunion, or on a first date. (Though after that third bottle of wine, it might be you who’s doing the pleading.)

What matters isn’t who they are or what they’re doing—what matters is how much you let them distract you. You might just be making coffee, but you also might (finally) be writing that book, chasing those dreams, taking those steps, or doing what you’ve always secretly wanted to.

In other words, don’t let the hanyacks of the world step on your toes.

Because every chance they get, they will.

And every time you let them?

You won’t.

Jun 14

2019

If You Ain’t Feelin’ Your Work Anymore: HONEY, BURN THAT ISH DOWN.

Jun 14, 2019

So, here’s an idea: making money is not courageous. Anybody can ring a bell for twenty years. “Look, ma—I’ve been standing over here ringing this bell for two entire decades—durh, durh, durh—and I finally got a sticker!” Making money is a relatively straightforward consequence of showing up to breathe in the right place. Cause and […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life, Hate Your Job?

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May 31

2018

If Somebody Told Me to Pick a Husband at Age Twenty-Three, I’d Likely Be Waking Up Next to Some Guy Who Can’t Spell “Lemon.”

May 31, 2018

You know why we’re all unhappy and restless and jaded and depressed? LIFE IS BORING US TO TEARS. Boredom is the devil, but most people don’t realize they’re bored. They’re busy working. They’re busy running. They’re busy doing ALL THE ERRANDS and keeping up with those fucksticks, The Jones’. It doesn’t feel like they’re bored, […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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Nov 22

2012

Lust, Turkey Gizzards + A Ladylike Toast

Nov 22, 2012

I blame my bleak and very unpromising cooking skills on Thanksgiving, you know. You’d think I would have gotten better from helping my mom prepare such a yearly feast for me, her and my dad. (Mashed potatoes were my sworn duty. Probably because they’re mashed, requiring heavy amounts of manual mashing child labor. Not to […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Apr 17

2017

Change Is Fucking Messy (Thank God)

Apr 17, 2017

Change is fucking messy. You’re effectively molding yourself, and re-molding yourself, the way a sculptor would a piece of clay. And yet, nobody says to the sculptor: Shame on you, butter fingers, for not having it perfect the first spin. Rather, there’s an expectation of process. Of trial, of error, of slow transformation; of forming, […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Jun 25

2012

A Tearful Birthday

Jun 25, 2012

Yesterday was my birthday. I flew from Ecuador to Chile on Friday so I could spend my birthday with my best girl friends in the whole wide world. Sure enough, they surprised me in the airport with glittery welcome back posters, prompting me to scream like a hyena. I had no idea they were coming. […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Mar 9

2012

Blow Off Work Today. That’s An Order.

Mar 9, 2012

I’ve been thinking about joy lately. I don’t particularly care for the word; every word has its own personality, and the word joy seems to conjure up an image of an old lady with dentures and pearls. The word just feels outdated. Mothballesque, if you will. Nevertheless, the concept remains. It’s stuck in my mind ever […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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I'm a Bad Influence on Women

Hey, I’m Ash! Twenty years ago I was a small town girl growing up in a trailer park in rural Pennsylvania. Fifteen years ago, I lost my family and everything I knew right as I became the first to graduate college. Fourteen years ago, I found myself leaving everything behind for a new life in the city where I could be “normal.” Ten years ago I realized normal was the most disappointing thing that ever happened to me. Nine years ago I quit my job in advertising and pursued my dreams as a creative writer. Eight years ago, I built a 6-figure business doing what I love using nothing more than the Internet and my voice. And now, today, I’m the founder of The Middle Finger Project, an irreverent media co. that helps other women find their voice and teaches them to use it to build whatever the f*ck they want to. With a book coming out with Penguin Random House in February 2020 (YASSS, WE’RE A PRODUCT IN TARGET!) I’m proud to be a bad influence on women and guide them into doing something disobediently brave with their life and their career.

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