Public Scholarship and Private Pedagogy, Oh My!

This past summer (2020), I was part of Tadaima! A Community Virtual Pilgrimage, a massive digital undertaking intended to hold space for the many in-person pilgrimage programs put on each year at former World War II Japanese American incarceration sites. I was honored to have been asked to participate in two programs, where I ledContinue reading “Public Scholarship and Private Pedagogy, Oh My!”

NASCAR, Nikkei, N—–

(N → ∞) Late on Easter Sunday 2020, NASCAR driver Kyle Larson said the N-word. Yeah, that one. He was participating in a virtual charity race, trying to get ahold of his spotter. Thinking he was speaking on a private channel, he said, “Hey, n—–.” I don’t think his spotter was Black; it doesn’t actuallyContinue reading “NASCAR, Nikkei, N—–”

Keep the Lore Wild: Why I Love MONGRELS by Stephen Graham Jones (2016)

Books build worlds by making rules, but what turns me off so much fantasy/supernatural fiction is that even after eschewing “real life rules” for their own shiny new ones, these books seem to think that they’re then obligated to follow those rules all the time, to the letter. No diverging, no slippage, no chaos. And that’s the part that’s just not realistic about fantasy, frankly. In what world are the rules infallible?

Review: The Farmacist, Ashley Farmer

I wrote a review of a new book out from Jellyfish Highway Press: The Farmacist, by Ashley Farmer. Jellyfish Highway Press, November 2015. 80 pages. Ashley Farmer’s The Farmacist suggests by its title an affiliation with digital contagion—perhaps as an offering, a written prescription for our complicated diagnosis. Yet there is nothing prescriptive about its approach. RatherContinue reading “Review: The Farmacist, Ashley Farmer”

When I’m Critical It’s Only Because I Love You: Growing Up in California and Pixar’s INSIDE OUT

I’d read a review that found the film disturbingly existential, even nihilistic, because–according to the reviewer–the film told its viewers that the happiness of childhood would eventually fade away and in adulthood we were all destined to be sad. If you’ve seen the film, you’ll know that this is a complete misreading. Its message isn’t that we’re all destined to be sad and increasingly so as we become adults–it’s that it’s okay to be sad; you shouldn’t have to (and indeed, shouldn’t, period) banish sadness; sadness is a part of the human condition and it is the part of you that can ask for help when you need it. To be sad is to welcome the idea that life holds troubles, and to open oneself to assistance from those around you. The film is a destigmatization of sadness, not a harrowing picture that that’s all we’re destined for as we age, or that it is something to be championed at all times.

Adventures with Russian Books and the People Who Read Them

I just finished reading Elif Batuman’s The Possessed: Adventures with Russian Books and the People Who Read Them, on the recommendation of several of my Russian literature teachers/professors several years ago. Now that I’ve finally read it, I’d like to recommend it to everyone I know, in the hope that in the next several years,Continue reading “Adventures with Russian Books and the People Who Read Them”

Mourning from Cali

Morning from Cali! — Paul Walker (@RealPaulWalker) January 28, 2013 I miss Paul Walker. When he wasn’t filming, or on press tours for Fast, he would post the most adorable, endearing Tweets–the kind of adorability that comes from having, at best, only a tenuous understanding of the medium. You could always tell when it wasContinue reading “Mourning from Cali”

“The Muckleshoot Tribe is spreading traditional food through schools” | NWIFC

As someone who can attest to the power of elementary school lunch as a defining aspect of my K-6 experience, this is such an excellent program. In the Pacific Northwest, The Muckleshoot Tribe is introducing traditional foods into the school lunch program– salmon, halibut, and other seafoods (and occasionally also venison and elk) are backContinue reading ““The Muckleshoot Tribe is spreading traditional food through schools” | NWIFC”