Electability, moms at work, and being mistaken for the other Indian
|Nisha Chittal||May 5, 2019|
Hello! This newsletter might look a little different this week, and that’s because I’ve moved platforms from Tinyletter to Substack, a much better newsletter platform. But the content will still be the same as it has been: interesting things I’m writing, reading, listening to, and other recommendations. After months of no name, I’m calling it Nisha’s Internet Tote Bag since it’s a slightly random grab bag assortment of things from around the internet each week.
Lots of good stuff to read this week, but in particular I want to call attention to two important pieces in the Washington Post this week on the frustrations of being a person of color in the workplace and being mistaken for that other person of color in your workplace:
“She’s Asian and she’s female. But she’s not me,” by Michelle Ye Hee Lee
“It ‘makes you feel invisible,’” by Rachel Hatzipanagos
I imagine that for many people, it probably seems like an innocuous mistake. But for people of color, it happens so often that it’s exhausting and yeah, it’s racist: it reduces a person to just their skin color, as though that’s the only distinguishing feature they have. I’ve often been mistaken for the other South Asian woman in the workplace, been called Priya and Neha and many other names of other co-workers, so these two stories felt all too real for me.
What I’ve been reading
Women did everything right. Then work got greedy, New York Times. A must-read from Claire Cain Miller on why so many highly educated, professional women still feel like they have no better option than to go part time or otherwise pull back from work after having kids, because of the ways our working culture changed.
First-time moms see a 30% drop in pay — but new dads get a bump up, NBC News. And people wonder why more millennial women aren’t having children?
What ‘good’ dads get away with, New York Times. Even today, men are still doing less childcare in relationships where both partners work full-time. And at the current rate of change, it will take 75 more years before men are doing half the domestic work.
The productivity pit: how Slack is ruining work, Vox/Recode. I spend all day Monday to Friday on Slack, and check it on evenings and weekends, so this one hit home a lot. I sort of shudder to think about the ways Slack has changed my workflow, productivity, and attention span.
Unconscious bias is running for president, Lithub. The great Rebecca Solnit on the frustrations of a presidential race where there are five accomplished women running, yet the white men still get all of the attention.
And even more: Men invented “likeability.” Guess who benefits, New York Times.
A bookstore, finally, comes to the Bronx, New York Times. When the Barnes & Noble in the Bronx closed five years ago, the borough had zero bookstores. Now, with the opening of The Lit Bar, they finally have one.
Why is framing a picture so expensive?, Vox. “Framing is now a service that communicates, ‘I have my shit together,’ and this is partly because it is a notoriously expensive service.”
The delights and discomforts of The Bold Type, a woke fantasy of magazine journalism, The New Yorker. The Bold Type gets pretty much nothing right about working in journalism! But I still can’t stop watching it. (Can they PLEASE stop referring to their site as “the dot-com” though?!?!)
Stuff I cooked this week
I had a busy week (I adopted a dog!) so there wasn’t much cooking, but yesterday I hosted some friends for book club brunch (we read Sally Rooney’s Normal People, which I highly recommend), and I made Smitten Kitchen’s cinnamon toast french toast and home fries, plus NYT Cooking’s shakshuka with feta, a classic that I’ve made many times before.
P.S. If you have any tips for a new first-time dog owner, let me know!