#5SmartReads - April 28, 2022
Madison on certifying Impossible meat, the first female manager in MLB, and fears around flying a trans flag
When she isn't playing Let's Go Eevee or Animal Crossing on her Switch, Madison works as a freelance writer for startups in the healthcare and fintech spaces. She lives in her hometown of Kansas City, Missouri: a place she never thought she'd return to, and one she's embracing as an opportunity to slow down.
One of my undergraduate degrees is in Religious Studies (even though I'm incredibly not religious, but that's a story for another day). Combine that with a passion for sustainability that stems from Mrs. Vernon, my 8th grade science teacher, and my ongoing interest in how socioreligious beliefs intersect with climate change is (I think) understandable. In a world where we're manufacturing more and more meatless, meat-like products, questions like these are going to be raised time and time again; there will likely never be hard and fast answers that apply to all religious people, but contending with these questions is still a critical cultural process.
Rachel Balkovec has an incredible history with the games of softball and baseball. Although her name is now synonymous with being The First Woman in multiple roles throughout the MLB’s extensive web, I’m most obsessed with the fact that she isn’t currently focused on working in the majors (mostly because I don’t think they deserve her, honestly). Instead, she’s working to make the minor leagues far better than they have ever been.
The Dentist Who Treated My Divorce (The New York Times)
*gifted NYT article*
As a memoirist and poet who is well-versed in grief, I have a soft spot for essays that marry these three worlds. This Modern Love essay does just that, in the most healing way. Two questions in particular have stuck with me since reading it: “I trembled in the plastic-covered chair, staring at my scuffed boots bolstered pitifully in front of me. Was I broken? Was medicating myself more or less the same as medicating a tooth in pain?” If nothing else, I hope this read prompts you to assess what external support you’ve been putting off or avoiding and maybe, just maybe, take a step towards accessing the care you deserve.
Any note or insight I add is wholly unnecessary here, so I've pulled a quote from farmer Lee Hennessy instead: "Part of the farm’s mission is for me to be visible as a 40-year-old trans man. But I’ve been really struggling with how to balance keeping myself safe and high-functioning, while at the same time doing what I want to be doing with my life, which is being that trans person that’s just living and doing cool shit."
The Radical Experiment To Saving The Lives Of Drug Dealers (Intelligencer)
Armed with a few months of suburban, whitewashed, and police-sponsored knowledge under my belt, I gave a speech at my fifth grade D.A.R.E. graduation. Whew, I'm thankful that people have the capacity to change and grow! I believe wholeheartedly in the critical nature of supervised-drug-consumption sites, and I am hopeful that they will become increasingly common over the coming years. This article is a narrative-centric deep dive into the realities of these facilities, covering the day-to-day experiences far more than any political talking points.