Heyday makes me feel better about the world

Ramona Itule-Patigian was a Sales and Marketing Intern at Heyday during the summer of 2012.

Just before I started my internship at Heyday, my non-Californian hometown of Tucson, Arizona, made the headlines. Unfortunately, it was for something that I found deeply upsetting. The Arizona Department of Education had forced the Tucson Unified School District to ban any and all Mexican-American studies, including a wide spread ban of books by Mexican-American and Native-American authors. As I watched footage of my own old high school on the news and read tear worthy articles that told stories of books being literally swiped out of students’ hands (whether or not this was a media exaggeration or not, I really don’t know), I was shocked and deeply disheartened. I was sure then and I’m sure now that the people who made this decision must not understand the repercussions of such a historical and cultural denial, not only for students of Mexican and Native-American descent, but for all students. The selective elimination of chunks of history and suppression of diverse voices has detrimental, innumerable consequences for everyone. Basically, the whole thing made me want to cry.

“So what does all this have to do with my internship at Heyday?” you might ask. Well, it is simply and yet, profoundly this: Heyday gives venue to the voices and histories that have been suppressed or forgotten. Heyday makes me feel better about the world. Maybe this sounds a little over the top, considering my time was mostly, but never futilely, spent on less than glamorous office tasks, but it’s the truth. There are many other things I could say about my time interning, like all the new skills I learned, the violins carved into the rich wooden floors, the realization that I’m clumsy on the phone with strangers, and sometimes having to move my car every two hours, which wasn’t actually as annoying as it sounds. What I’ve truly enjoyed the most though, is feeling good and purposeful about all of those tasks. What Heyday does really matters. So thankfully, while our sometimes forgotten words and worlds are sadly threatened in Arizona, places like Heyday in California continue to give them life and it’s been awesome to be a part of that.