March 3rd – National I Want You To Be Happy Day with Juleyka Lantigua-Williams

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Podcast Recommendations for National I Want You To Be Happy Day

Today’s guest is Juleyka Lantigua-Williams, executive producer of many wonderful podcasts including 70 Million. 

Use #IWantYouToBeHappyDay for all things related to this day. 

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Podcast Gumbo is produced weekly by Paul Kondo. Paul also writes the Podcast Gumbo newsletter where he recommends 3 unique podcast episodes every Wednesday.

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Paul can be found on Twitter at @paulkondo.

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Hey. This is Paul Kondo. This is the Podcast Gumbo podcast and I’ve got a rhetorical question for ya.

Are you like me and find those things we call National Days, like Cheeseball Day or worse, Moldy Cheese Day, amusing? Yeah, me too. So each week, I’ll have one of my podcast friends challenge me to find an episode related to one of those days and I’ll be releasing it on the actual day it occurs. 

So, let’s get to it. What is today’s National Day?

Hi Paul, it’s Juleyka. I just learned that March 3rd is National I Want To Make You Happy Day. And, you know, it’s podcasting where everyone is pretty much cheerful all the time. So, I dare you to find a podcast episode that really really goes out of its way to make someone happy. Thanks.

Hang on to your seats, people. We have a special episode. Not that they aren’t all special but we have something a little different today.

As Juleyka said, March 3rd is National I Want You To Be Happy Day. And when she agreed to be a guest, she made me feel really happy especially since she picked this day.

I don’t think I have to say too much about this day because it should be quite self-explanatory. If not, go celebrate by making someone happy. Maybe it’s calling someone that you haven’t spoken to in ages. This, of course, assumes they would be happy to hear from you. 

Maybe it’s letting a co-worker steal your lunch from the company fridge and not writing that nasty note to them. 

Or maybe you do something as simple as putting the toilet seat down. You know that will make someone else happy.

So do something to make someone happy and share it with the I Want You To Be Happy Day hashtag.

For my recommendation today, I went with tried and true. If you read my newsletter, I know this sounds like a broken record. No podcast makes me consistently happier than the Kind World podcast. It’s usually an ugly cry after ugly cry. 

My favorite episode is When The Sun Came Out about a chance meeting between a 4-year old girl and an 81-year old man in a supermarket. I don’t want to spoil it and I also don’t want to risk crying so just go listen to it. There’s also a follow-up episode that I’ll post in the show notes. 

My guest today is Juleyka Lantigua-Williams. I tell people that if you don’t know Juleyka, your life is not complete and I don’t say it with some smirk on my face. 

Juleyka is the creator and executive producer of the 70 Million podcast, which is a documentary podcast about criminal justice reform. It’s important to note that this is not a true-crime podcast – this is so much bigger than that.

The episode called How New Orleans Could Set a New Course for Bail Reform is ridiculously enlightening. It’s informative but also maddening to learn about how the bail system works. 

Ok, so I said this episode was special and here’s why. When Juleyka sent me her audio, she first sent me this which is her recommendation for this day. Maybe she didn’t trust me to come up with something myself. So I could just tell you what it is or I could let you get one more earful of Juleyka. 

Hi Paul, it’s Juleyka. Thanks for inviting me on your super cool podcast. I have chosen an episode after overthinking it in typical fashion. It’s called I Can Die Now. It’s from The Moth and it is one of the few pieces of audio in the last few years that completely stopped me in my tracks. I literally could not do anything but listen and listen more intently as it played the first time I heard it. And I couldn’t stop smiling the entire time, so as the storyteller unfolded the deeper and deeper layers of the story, leading to that unbelievable ending, I just felt myself being transported which is what a good story should do. I felt transported and for those seven or so minutes that the story went on, I was somewhere else. And it restored me in a way that very few pieces of audio have done in the last few years. And so, it’s a perfect thing to share today on our national day of making other people feel good. I hope that people who listen to it enjoy it and get taken to another place that I was when I first heard it. Thanks again for having me on. Bye. 

That ends our recommendations for the day. Now for a little extra hot sauce. March 3rd is also one of the biggest holidays in Japan as it’s Girl’s Day. It’s easy to remember because it’s on 3/3. Boy’s Day is on 5/5 but for some reason, it doesn’t get the same amount of love. 

As always, take a look at the show notes for links to all the podcasts mentioned in this episode as well as other life-altering information. To make it easy for you, there’s also a link to a podcast playlist that will contain all the episodes ever mentioned in this show. 

See you next week sometime for another round of recommendations. 

Are you still listening? Do you still want more podcast goodness? If so, get on over to and subscribe to my newsletter today. 

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