5SR - March 18, 2024

Hitha on coral reefs, Bre-return, and hysterectomies

A quick refresher - I’m Hitha Palepu, the founder of #5SmartReads. If you’d like to connect with me elsewhere, I’m most active on Instagram and write a weekly newsletter about smart, random things (check out the most recent issue). Looking forward to connecting there!

The case for Great Britain’s return to the EU is fairly obvious, but it’s never been more wittingly made than in William Keegan’s essay.

His premise is simple - while joining the EU didn’t impact Britain’s economy much, leaving the EU has caused significant damage that the nation continues to deal with today.

The data is clear in a recently published study conducted by the Centre for European Reform, and this move has the support of former prime ministers and some parties. But Boris Johnson’s potential return to 10 Downing is dominating Britain’s political news cycles instead of this - and it’s by design, not by accident?

Those who don’t learn from their mistakes are doomed to repeat them. And there are powerful forces who will gaslight you into thinking a mistake is actually the best outcome - and that’s even more terrifying.

It’s been a year since I met with my oncologist and was told I needed a hysterectomy. And while I spent the three months between diagnosis and procedure mentally spiraling, I have to admit I rarely think about my missing uterus and cervix after I physically recovered from my surgery last summer.

And if I do think about it, it’s with immense gratitude and grateful for the improved quality-of-life I have now.

I really loved this interview (in one of my favorite newsletters) centered on another woman’s hysterectomy journey. While her circumstances were entirely different from mine, I share her joy in no longer having a period and generally feeling free from the energy we both spent on dealing with our reproductive systems’ issues.

Coral bleaching is becoming far too common and destructive to our oceans’ health.

But in Southeast Asia, there seems to be hope in the massive spawnings still being observed - a beautiful moment where coral releases hundreds of balls (containing eggs and sperm) to propagate new coral in the surrounding region.

What makes the coral in this region different and more resilient to the rising ocean temperatures?

This region has a greater diversity in coral species and within species, which allow for the spawning rates and coral cover to sustain and thus resist the higher temperatures better.

If only we could figure out how to help the coral species outside the Gulf of Thailand and bring them back to their health baseline.

Irish Wish was the cheesy, frothy, delightful film that I needed. And honestly, I’m here for Lindsay to take the throne as the Netflix rom com queen the way her Mean Girls co-star Lacey Chabert did on Hallmark.

We need more of these happy, light films. And my millennial heart needs these two women to be the leaders in them.

I had no clue how intense Lindsay’s schedule in the early aughts were - filming 5 studio films while recording 2 studio albums (often recording on set of a film - damn) - and keeping up with the promotional schedule during filming and recording. And think of the tabloid’s obsession with her during this frenzied time gives me the ick and makes me want to go back in time and never pick up an Us Weekly or In Touch that I would fervently purchase and read.

We know better now. And Lindsay’s doing much better now - choosing a more peaceful life in Dubai and taking a long break before returning to acting - in an effort to make her work the center of folks’ focus.

I’m here for it. And for the return of Lindsay in general.

…for buyers, that is. For realtors - perhaps not.

Should federal court approve the settlement between the National Association of Realtors and the sellers who filed the original suit, the former will pay $418M in damages over four years, and could usher in lower the commission rates.

I’m here for greater housing affordability, given the high interest rates and increased cost-of-living these days. I also feel for my realtor friends, as such a cut will impact their own livelihoods.

I hope there’s a way to protect both.

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