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Stuck inside this weekend? Make the most of cold weather hibernation by binge-watching You (Season Two's coming soon!), listening to new music from Broods and Cherry Glazerr, and breaking into your Girl Scout cookie stash. Grab the Thin Mints, then get reading.

MEET TODAY'S CLOVER, @judyxykam: Judy's an NYU student and tennis star who combines sports with activism. 

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🏈 Whether you’re rooting for the Pats, cheering on the Rams, or couldn’t care less about grown men who make million-dollar salaries by tossing around leather balls, this year’s Super Bowl is worth watching. The commercials are shaping up to be the most political and ~woke~ ever—here are the ones to watch out for—and there’s a good chance that half-time is going to be bonkers. Maroon 5 is (controversially!) performing alongside Travis Scott and Big Boi. Tbd if that much-rumored proposal is actually going to happen, but either way, things are bound to get weird.

🍔 A whopping 40% of Americans eat fast food on any given day. And it’s not just our president indulging in Big Macs; more than 70% of college students are lured by dollar menus on the reg. But is it really their fault? It’s complicated. As one expert told The New York Times, cheap chains benefit from being on campus because they're building brand loyalty when consumers are young. Students benefit, too, because fast food's convenient and, OK, good—especially on a college budget. So despite the many downsides, don’t expect it to disappear soon.

💪 Speaking of junk food: If you want to eat healthily, you *could* take Beyoncé and Jay-Z up on their offer to go vegan (and score free lifetime supply of concert tickets!). Or you could work out. A new study of 18 to-35-year-olds found that hitting the gym positively influences eating habits, even if we don’t realize it. Even moderate exercise can reduce preferences for high-fat snacks (after all, a greasy pizza often seems less appetizing after a bunch of cardio). Food for thought?

💸 Corporations can’t stop taking advantage of teens. Following a week of massive media layoffs, Buzzfeed revealed that its “second highest traffic driver worldwide” was a teen girl in Michigan who's an ace at making quizzes. She was compensated not with paychecks, but in swag. Even worse: Facebook has been paying minors for data. Which, sure, at least they’re preying on paying, but just $20 a month for such valuable intel is insulting—and it could soon be illegal.

By Liza Darwin
 
Marissa Smith spent much of her career working her way up as a fashion editor at magazines, eventually landing her dream gig as the Senior Market Editor at NYLON. But when the print mag folded, she re-evaluated and found a new, equally dreamy calling as the in-house stylist at OBEY. She moved to California and now styles all the brand’s photoshoots (and hasn’t looked back since). Get Marissa’s best advice—from finding your passion to finding a great mentor—below.
 
What were you like as a teen?
That's a loaded question! I was a cheerleader but also "scene," and I hung out with drama kids. I was all over the place, but mainly I was pretty normal. I'm straight edge—meaning, I never partied in high school and was very responsible (designated driver for life). I went to a lot of movies, hung out with my best friend at her house listening to music and taking photos for MySpace...you know, the usual for a teenager in the early 2000's. Looking back, I'm pretty happy with my teenage years. I was confident enough to get through high school and move on with my life. I can't really ask for anything more out of a teenager from New Jersey.

As an adult, what do you wish you could tell your teenage self now?
Falling in love as a teenager was the one thing I never experienced. I'm sure my teenage self would be stoked to know that a year out of high school, I found my true love and married him. But mainly, I just would tell my teen self to trust her gut and that she's going to be OK. I swear—if I knew how much I was going to be able to travel, write, create, and get my dream job, I probably would have had a heart attack.
 
How exactly did you get to where you are now, professionally?
It all comes down to my internships and the relationships I made during them. I interned in college for Glamour (twice) and ELLE. I landed an amazing mentor (hi, Rachael Wang!) and she’s helped me through all of my jobs since. Out of college, I couldn't find a full-time job, so I freelanced for GQ and Glamour. I eventually landed at NYLON as a fashion assistant a year later, with my mentor Rachael as my boss. I worked my way up at NYLON through the five and half years there and ended up as the Senior Fashion Market Editor, which was my dream job. It was the biggest accomplishment of my work life (and still is). In September of 2017, the magazine unfortunately folded—with that, my dreams were shattered. I had to re-evaluate my career goals and what I wanted for my life long-term.
 
I was lucky enough to have my mentor and a lot of friends who helped me figure out my next steps. That led to a cross-country move to California and a job with OBEY Clothing, a brand I've always been a fan of. As the in-house stylist, I work with the marketing team, styling and producing all photo shoots for both the men's and women's collections.
 
What's one thing you wish you had known then that you know now about having a career?
Once you get the job you've always dreamed of, you stop dreaming. I wish I would have known to keep thinking about the future and keep dreaming, bigger and better things. Also: Fight for yourself always. I'm very timid (and still am!) about fighting for myself. If I would have started when I was younger, this would probably be a non-issue now.

What work advice do you have for teens just starting out?
Find what field you're interested in, and then try everything you can within that field. Intern in multiple areas within the industry if you can. Test everything until you find the right fit. Don't get discouraged if things don't go your way in your twenties—there is so much time, and so much out there to do.



This letter is brought to you by our pals at Underlined, a teen book community by Random House Children’s Books. This month, we’re highlighting Two Can Keep a Secret, a new novel from the New York Times bestselling author of One of Us Is Lying, Karen M. McManus.

Watch the AwesomenessTV Underlined Book Club on IGTV, where our host Dahlia breaks down Two Can Keep a Secret and why you should read it ASAP. Watch the book trailer here!
 

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