The cheat code to Fancyland. Also: I'm engaged! This is Yenta.
Must love dogs. Specially Jamie's dog. His name is Ozzy. Must love Ozzy.
Table of contents:
We start with some updates about my life.
Then our featured look at a friend who is: single, hiring, with an interesting job
Lots of other people want to hire
Other people are looking for housing (or have housing). Including us!
Other people are looking for project friends
Lastly — people are looking romance! I have leads.
First — some sahar updates
Since we last talked, a lot has happened, gang.
Because Sarah proposed!
Engagement rings are old and busted. Instead, she gave me a book! A book full of letters from friends wishing us the best. Delightful.
Integrity Institute remains cool, thriving.
We hired a few people, full time!
I’ve been sick with at least two illnesses for about a month and a half. It sucks.
I also spent fun time in the press and talking ideas.
My alma mater put me on the front cover of the alumni magazine! I really liked the story. The reporter spent a lot of time getting to know me and really trying to figure out my life.
I was on a few podcasts, including a really fun one with someone who is a city planner. I learned a lot! Really recommend it.
And a bunch of other stuff.
Oh, and Sarah and I are moving to Brooklyn soon. Got any leads for apartments? We’re thinking: near a climbing gym, near a park, has dishwasher, commute-able to downtown Brooklyn.
Next — our feature: Jamie
You can date her. You can be hired by her. You can learn about her life. (Probably only try one at a time, please)
Once in a while I like to profile my friends who have some combination of:
Have a cool, strange, or off-beat job
Bonus: Are hiring
Meet my friend Jamie. I had a few long talks with her recently to learn about how she fits in all three buckets.
The work/life/career story of Jamie:
Right now, Jamie is an executive assistant in some corner of the Harvard Kennedy School. Her life is pretty fancy! She’s in meetings with powerful and interesting people, she’s learning a lot, and her voice is in the room and respected over and over again. She’s talking to everyone: faculty, staff, students, honored guests. Right now she’s conducting bespoke research Jacinda Arden, the PM of New Zealand, in preparation for welcoming her as the commencement speaker for Harvard. Yesterday she ran a workshop with 25 faculty to synthesize their ideas on what “public leadership” means. Seems pretty great! And what did she to do get all that? A fair amount of scheduling. (Maybe that’s a fair trade! I have done a fair amount of scheduling in my life, and it is Not Fun).
You could say that being an executive assistant is a cheat code to moving to the land of Fancy quickly. And once you’re there, I’m told you tend to stay.
But what was she doing before entering the land of the bigwigs? A major in international relations and women and gender studies. 5 years in Buenos Aires working for the UN and playing ultimate frisbee. Some itinerant time in the US, before a friend recommended she put her hands to a part-time job being an admin assistant for a different Harvard person. It was fun — and then people realized she was good at it. Now here we are.
Being an executive assistant sounds like it might give you an interesting perspective on workism. You have proximity to people who sacrificed a lot to be at the apex of their careers — perhaps we can use that as a case study to learn if it was all worth it? To put it another way: I asked Jamie about Workism. You know, the big problem in the lives of many of us. Where you put your career identity at the center of your life, to fill the hole where perhaps your friends, your loves, or your god should be. She had some interesting things to say, mostly drawing from her time in Buenos Aires.
Some pearls of wisdom about workism and careers:
“Trust the process, work doesn’t doesn’t have to define you.” Jamie spent a lot of time worrying about “what next for me careerwise?” turns out, the answer was completely outside of her planning and the only thing she really needed was patience and more time playing frisbee.
“Fancy titles can help, even if they are random”. That first part-time admin assistant job? It was also, officially, managing director at a management consulting firm. Titles can mean anything and that means, among other things, not to feel to jealous of your friends with fancy pants roles on their business card.
“People with jobs that look on paper might not be happy. There’s a false idea that if you have a good idea and make a lot of money, you figure it out. But those people are also struggling in their own way.” Jamie was happiest in Argentina, making friends with people dancing, not knowing what her friends jobs even were. There are ways to live that aren’t the way that you are doing it. (And a lot of it, let’s be clear, isn’t your fault! it’s about capitalism and public policy — the choices that governments make about social insurance, public transportation, access to free education, and so on. Those big choices make our little choices much easier or harder).
The story of Jamie the person you can date:
The first man Jamie ever dated was the president of the women’s rights club in Amherst Regional High School. He was a dancer. He was also half Puerto Rican, and his parents loved her so much that they sold her a car for $1 after he went to college and broke her heart.
The next man Jamie fell for was Alejandro, in Argentina. (College was “that typical blur of hookups”) (“SAFE and CONSENSUAL hookups” she hastens to mention). He was a dancer, and Colombian. Yes, lads, that is a pattern.
I asked her to think up an imaginary perfect person to date. Be specific. Here’s who he is. Does he sound similar to you?
He’s smart, latino, and really good at frisbee. He is extroverted — maybe not as much as me, but enough to fend for himself at a party. He’s down to randomly take a day off and road trip to Acadia and hike in Maine, or a beach in Rhode Island, or amtrak to NYC for a show.
He’s got a good group of friends who all love each other and laugh a lot together. He is a positive person with a little bit of baggage — enough to understand depression and anxiety, but not so much that I need to support him through them.
He’s emotionally mature enough to be confrontational. He might tell me: “Hey, I notice you need to remember to schedule yourself more alone time. What if we put time on the calendar to read books on the couch next to each other?”
He loves dogs. He loves Ozzy. Maybe has a best friend dog for Ozzy.
This is Ozzy:
Jamie is looking for someone:
Probably male: “I think women are hot. I just haven’t dated them seriously before”
Looking for a relationship: “Eventually, I will want babies. But I’m not looking for someone in a rush”.
Maybe 25-40 years old
Living in the Northeast: “Look, I am down to move eventually. But I need to spend time in person with someone for a while. You can’t start a relationship with a stranger long distance”
She is hiring!
Jamie works at the Center for Public Leadership. It is a research center at Harvard that provides scholarships for students to go to grad school so that they become great leaders — the plan is that people go do the work they want, rather than the work they need to do to wipe out all the debt.
There are also faculty affiliated that research “what is good public leadership? How do we make it happen?” and also a bunch of social impact, nonprofit management, assorted questions.
So: there are jobs! Here they are. If you’re interested, you might want to hit her up.
What to do with all this info:
Interested in learning more about the life of working in academia or admin assistanting? Email Jamie at her work email.
Interested in applying for these specific jobs? Go for it! Also, feel free to email Jamie.
Interested in a very cool person who might be your soulmate? Email Jamie. But this time, use her gmail.
Jobs from friends
See something you like? Reply to this email and I’ll connect you. Or go directly to the source.
You could work at Token Transit with Ekate:
- We like public transit a lot. We work with around 170+ agencies across the US and Canada to get more people on board the bus. (Also, the train, the ferry...)
- We help universities and social service providers distribute hundreds of thousands of free bus passes a year. This makes a difference in people's lives, and we are looking to beef up this infrastructure.
- We are still small at less than 10 people, so you'll have a huge impact and influence our culture a great deal. We are based in San Francisco and have a dope office in the Mission, but we are remote-friendly.
You could intern with Mek for the Internet Archive!
The non-profit Internet Archive is offering a paid "Summer of Code" fellowship to support one early-career UX Designer or Front-end Engineer in re-imagining the core experiences of OpenLibrary.org.
This paid fellowship position is 2 months, fully remote, flexible, open source, and is open to international applicants.
Contact: Mek <email@example.com>, Program Director @ Open Library
Jacob Edelman says "work with me!" Here's the job: https://www.linkedin.com/jobs/view/2985405580/
It's called a [Creative] Traffic Manager, but it sounds more like a PM to me. It's for a firm in Boston that gets contracts from the state to standup high quality nonprofitlike/governmental functions. That is, if I (Sahar) remember correctly.
Over a decade ago, I was a little baby intern in DC. Causten and I would get lunches and he’d tell me all sorts of stories. Now he’s hiring someone for a fancy social movement job on behalf of a wonderful organization, the Movement Voter Project. (I wrote a whole essay on why MVP is dope back in 2020!)
I'm hiring a Sr. Learning and Evaluations Manager. I need a super savvy person who can leverage data and experiments to help us prove the political effectiveness of our investments and partners
Jonathan Sclarsic is hiring an IT manager for the Democratic Attorneys General Association.
Kayla Blado is hiring a Communications Specialist at the National Labor Relations Board.
Lizzie Grobbel is hiring numbers people to do LCA (what is that?) at her environmental sustainability consultancy.
Mari has a friend who is hiring a senior enforcement officer for the US Treasury department. Specifically — the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network. Fancy! And the pay is … actually quite nice. Closes on Thursday.
See something you like? Reply to this email and I’ll connect you. Or go directly to the source.
Sarah and I are moving to Brooklyn! We’re looking for a place to move into that is close to a climbing gym and a park, and has at least a dishwasher if not laundry.
Ben H has a place in Rochester. “We might be renting out or selling our home with an urban farm in Rochester, NY near U of R.”
Charles has a Brooklyn Williamsburg apartment. “There's a lot of availability and flexibility for one person or a couple to rent one or the other of the two rooms for some weeks or even months, starting idk, and ending whenever. Offer is only to friends or friends of friends, there is no link” (Reply to this email to get connected)
Ekate is looking for a place near Boston / Cambridge / Somerville. “I'm looking for a space to sublet in Cambridge / Somerville for a month or so this summer. Preferably, July, but June could work. Doesn't have to be on the month boundary or anything.”
Jenny R is looking for a 1-month-ish sublet in Boston in August for a research trip
David L is looking for pet friendly housing in the Bay Area. (We have 2 cute and friendly doodles.)
Ibrahim is looking for an apartment and maybe furnitures in Boston. Recommendation for a coast to coast moving company.
Caitlyn is looking for a summer sublet in DC! If anyone has student friends who want to rent out their place.
Projects, friends, misc
Albert in Oakland has an intriguing offer.
I write and I want to meet other writers, specifically funny/fiction/surreal writers!
also looking for ppl who want to host small culture events (panels, book release, magic shows, card/board games) to fill my house calendar, we have room for 30 ppl seated/60 standing!
Are you looking for romance, flings, something in between? Well, many of my friends are single and/or ready to mingle.
Concentrations of people in NY, SF, Boston, and DC
But also smatterings around the country, especially Austin and NC
Mostly but by no means exclusively women
Mid-20s to late 50s but a concentration of people around their late 20’s to late 30s
How do you find these people? Fill out the romance form.
This email is, in a real way, just a fancy way to remind you that the latest yentathread is up. So, feel free to just jump there.
If you’re getting this email, it’s probably because we know each other and are friends. It’s also likely that we haven’t seen each other nearly as much as we’d like over the last few years. I miss you! Hope you’re well. Please reach out any time.