Culture

My Family’s Secret Recipe for Immortality

Though my mother’s no longer here to meet my son, he’ll taste his grandmother’s cooking though our family’s Sunday gravy, the one I make every week to keep her spirit alive.

“I should hate forever to be a burden to you”: Lessons in Love from Virginia Woolf and Vita Sackville-West

I don’t want to take time away from your book, she said, but the book could wait. My writing was always there. She might not be.

Jan 09, 2019
How Watching Asian American Dads Onscreen Helps Me Face My Own

Our fathers may never know us the way we wish they would. And if we learned that ignorance is bliss, it’s because we learned it from them.

Dec 18, 2018
How This Woman Celebrates Black History and Food in Salvador, Brazil

Miraci is being the one thing blackness has always been forced to be even when unwilling—political.

Dec 11, 2018
As a Trans Person, I Don’t Need You to Hug Me. I Need You to Fight for Me.

Trans people have rights because we’re human—not because we’re special. So why does having those rights recognized require a flood of trans tears?

Dec 06, 2018
Finding My Voice as a Filipino Through the Kundiman and Karaoke

It’s hard to negotiate how much of me is Filipino or American, but I realize this is only a question asked of me by people who seek clarity in their own definition of “American” identity.

What I Would See if I Looked in the Mirror of Erised

My heart’s deepest desire was to see my mother again, yes, but also to glimpse a portrait of normalcy that I had never known in the years of her illness.

Nov 28, 2018
Special Request: Why I Fought with My Family on Holiday

“I wanted to be present in Paris. I forgot to be present with my family.”

Nov 20, 2018
How I Learned the Craft of Going on Dates with Girls

I have dated long enough to see a change, and I am still young enough to work at the craft.

Nov 15, 2018
How to Survive a Disaster Movie: Be White. Speak English.

When Americans consume media that privileges white survival, what does it mean for which disasters earn our attention, our money, our likes, our grief?

Nov 08, 2018
What Wong Kar-wai’s Films Meant to Young Asians in America

Wong Kar-wai’s films showed me how to navigate that liminal space between tenderness and loneliness, connection and alienation, East and West.

Nov 07, 2018
Why You Should Be Watching Maangchi, the Korean Cooking YouTube Star

I used to imagine having a Korean mother, someone rich in stories and jokes about Korean food and culture. My Korean mom would, ideally, be Maangchi.

Oct 29, 2018
A Recipe for Survival

Your stomach hurts because all you’ve eaten this week is frozen yogurt—but it is a hurt you can bear more than hunger.

Oct 25, 2018
When Your Family Wants You To Be “All Boy”

I wanted to tell him that, if I could, I would give him my body to use however he saw fit. It meant nothing to me. If only bodies were like gloves you could peel off and lose.

Sep 12, 2018
How Truthful Depictions of Suicidal Ideation Help Me Resist My Own

If we’re going to spend so much time with suicide in pop culture, I do believe we are owed an honest reckoning with what ideation is, as well as depictions that are truthful rather than dangerous.

Sep 10, 2018
Is the Green You See, the Green I See?

As my brain absorbed these other names, the colors seemed to shift. The names themselves were changing how I saw the colors.

My Queer Chinese Comrades, in My Mother Tongue

Today tongzhi is seldom used in a political context, if ever: The Beijing LGBT center is called Beijing Comrade Center; 同志村, or comrade village, translates to gayborhood. So yeah, everyone knows what comrade really means—everyone except the president of China, apparently.

Sep 04, 2018
Imagining a Way Out of My Codependency

My codependency is always trying to convince me that it deserves to live. It asks me to keep the poison coming.

Aug 22, 2018
How Brazil’s Madame Satã Transformed His Life and Became an Icon

By day, he protected businesses from thieves and corrupt police. By night, he changed into sequined gowns to sing and dance in Rio de Janeiro’s cabarets.

You Bet Your Life: ‘Death Bonds,’ the Investments That Want You Dead

When a new drug regime gave him a renewed lease of life, Morrison began to receive irate calls from the investor who’d bought over his insurance policies.

Aug 02, 2018