#5SmartReads - August 4, 2022
Hitha on a constitutional convention, Wedding Season, and when you lose your passport
The more I read this article, the more terrified about the future of this country I became.
It doesn’t matter that we passed common sense gun reform and could even find a bipartisan way to federally protect same sex marriage, abortion and contraception access, and enact necessary climate change and healthcare reforms.
If the GOP gets 34 state legislatures to pass their call to convene a constitutional convention (and they already have 19), they could rewrite the Constitution.
And while it’s never been accomplished in this country’s short history, they have momentum and a solid ground game established to make history.
This is why voting in every single election - especially local and state elections - matter so much.
This is not an easy read - but it is an important one that I hope you take the time to read, share, and make your voting plan for it. If you live in New Mexico, South Dakota, Iowa, North Carolina, Virginia, or New Hampshire, call your state reps to log your opposition against a constitutional convention.
On ending things (Madeleine Dore)
I have yet to write a farewell post on my old blog (honestly, I find it somewhat comical that the final post is a gift guide from over 3 years ago). Every time I sat down to write what Hitha On The Go has meant to me and that this wasn’t goodbye, but a shift in what and how I wanted to write, I just couldn’t find the words.
After reading Madeleine’s beautiful piece as she sunsets Extraordinary Routines (which has been one of my favorite sites to get inspiration and new ways of working), I’m even more intimidated about writing such a post. But I also felt her words and feelings so deeply, having been there myself almost four years ago.
We often view endings as something to mourn or be sad about - and yes, many of them are. But endings can also be beautiful - closure on projects or relationships that have run their course, or creating space for new projects and opportunities.
“Something doesn’t have to last forever for it to be successful. Some things end because they’re finished. Some things end because we’re finished with them. Some things end because they just didn’t work out.
It’s not a failure to declare an ending, rather it can be an opportunity. As the writer Sarah Manguso put it, “Perfect happiness is the privilege of deciding when things end.””
Here’s to ending things because it’s the right thing to do, and to experiencing and appreciating that perfect happiness.
What happens when you’re robbed of your passport and luggage - while you’re traveling internationally?
One journalist found out firsthand, while on vacation in Sicily. And he reported a woefully outdated, incredibly expensive system that feels like it has no place in 2022.
“When it wants to, the U.S. government can quickly and accurately verify the identity of people who wish to enter the U.S. But it doesn’t put those tools to use to help out Americans stranded abroad, who instead are asked to travel long distances to buy new passports — no matter how difficult that may be.”
If a candidate ran for President on a platform to make the IRS issue tax bills of what you actually own and to modernize the passport fulfillment/replacement process, it would be a winning platform.
And, you know, take decisive action on student debt. But more on that later.
Pallavi Sharda on Why ‘Wedding Season’ Feels So “Rare” (The Juggernaut)
While I have no interest to delve into the heated debate of Netflix’s Purple Hearts (frankly, I found the script and the directing to be wasted on two incredibly talented actors), I am ALL IN on Wedding Season and will be watching it the second it’s available for streaming.
And not just because my dear friend Ari is in it, though I am excited to see her on the screen instead of on-stage.
This interview with Pallavi Sharda (whose journey to Hollywood is a fascinating, winding one) has me even more excited for the movie, and not just because of the apparent Taco Bell references.
“But I continued to do Bharatanatyam through university and was teaching it. Law was [me thinking], “What’s the most intellectually rigorous thing I can study being a lover of liberal arts?” But it was very clear to me that I wasn’t really into practicing. I was a bit of a fish out of water. Law was also a very white space at the time. I was one of the few Brown kids in my school. So it made me really start to think about where I wanted to be and what I wanted to do. So I went to drama school part-time while I was at law school. It had been a childhood dream to work in Indian cinema, just because of the dancing. It was a child-like fantasy. And then I got to 17, and I was like, “Wait a second, why not? Why not go after that?” So that’s when I secretly took off to India, telling my parents I was doing some subjects at a university in Delhi as part of my law degree.”
Wedding Season is available on Netflix tomorrow, August 4. I hope you’ll join me in streaming it this weekend.
Disclosure - I am an investor in The Juggernaut.
Based on a lot of conversations I’ve been having, it would seem so.
And it looks like interest forgiveness and future loans being interest-free has some bipartisan support (along with interest forgiveness having a more clear path via executive order than debt cancellation).
There are two bills introduced in Congress - Senator Rubio’s LOAN Act, and the Zero-Percent Student Loan Refinancing Act introduced by Congressman Courtney and Senator Whitehouse in their respective chambers.
With federal student loans payments on track to resume next month, a bill like this is urgent and, I would argue, doable in this Congress.