Chivalry Is Not Dead


Dear Sarah,

Last night I (nobly) defended you from one of the most fearsome eight-legged menaces that I have ever encountered. Please see the evidence of my protective love on the kitchen floor by the rice cooker. Yours, Richard (xoxo).

P.S. If you feel like cleaning the beast up, I should be most grateful. But if you have to leave the house, I definitely understand, too. After our battle last night I may be too afraid to touch it.


Dear Richard,

Thank you for bravely defending my slumber.

Yours gratefully,


My friend and former mentor, David Swanson, waxing eloquent about his slow journey towards becoming a pastor (he was installed yesterday):

At the same time I was being convinced of the purpose and importance of church, I was also coming to understand consumerism as one of the main forces at work in shaping the American landscape. To be American is to be a consumer. We are defined and valued by what we purchase & own. We are marketed to so constantly that we are usually unaware that it’s even happening. We are trained to be dissatisfied because content people don’t buy stuff they don’t need. One of the most devastating effects of consumerism is that we see come others as consumer goods, objects that can be used to satisfy a need.…

And so, at the same time God was teaching me to love his church, I was observing pastors succumb to the needs & expectations of people who had been formed not by the sacrificial love of Christ but by the selfish & empty promises of the American Dream. These pastors experienced the incredible pressures of our consumer-driven society: pressures to entertain; pressures to market a relevant message; pressures to fine-tune the spiritual sales pitch and close the religious deal; pressures to command respect like a business leader, to heal dysfunctions like a therapist, and inspire happiness like a self-help guru. I have known these pressures and succumbed too many times to count. So while I learning to love the church, and was beginning to discern a call to serve the church, it was increasingly hard to imagine being a pastor.

So what happened?

Congratulations, David. You can read about the rest of his journey here.


STERN in Kowloon

So thankful to see this crop up in my own city, Hong Kong. Thank you, “Stern” — it means more than you know.

The most damning element here is not that George Zimmerman was found innocent: it’s the bitter knowledge that Trayvon Martin was found guilty. During his cross examination of Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, defense attorney Mark O’Mara asked if she was avoiding the idea that her son had done something to cause his own death. During closing arguments, the defense informed the jury that Martin was armed because he weaponized a sidewalk and used it bludgeon to George Zimmerman. During his post-verdict press conference, O’Mara said that were his client black, he would never have been charged. At the defense’s table, and in the precincts far beyond it where donors stepped forward to contribute the funds that underwrote their efforts, there is a sense that George Zimmerman was the victim.

O’Mara’s statement echoed a criticism that began circulating long before Martin and Zimmerman encountered each other. Thousands of black boys die at the hands of other African Americans each year, but the black community, it holds, is concerned only when those deaths are caused by whites. It’s an appealing argument, and widespread, but simplistic and obtuse. It’s a belief most easily held when you’ve not witnessed peace rallies and makeshift memorials, when you’ve turned a blind eye to grassroots organizations like the Interrupters in Chicago working valiantly to stem the tide of violence in the city. It is the thinking of people who’ve never wondered why African Americans disproportionately support strict gun control legislation. The added quotient of outrage in cases like this one stems not from the belief that a white murderer is somehow worse than a black one, but from the knowledge that race determines whether fear, history, and public sentiment offer that killer a usable alibi.

Jelani Cobbs in his New Yorker article, “George Zimmerman, Not Guilty: Blood on the Leaves.”

Word. (Via Ta Nehisi-Coates)

"We can play anything in the world!" — Ariel Huang, slightly overestimating our abilities. A good, light-hearted track to counterbalance the last two. 

I can’t help myself. Here’s another from the same session. Definitely darker and more sophisticated, but we still accidentally end up in a major key. (My bad.)

A casual recording (from 2010!) of Ariel Huang, Silas Lee, and myself jamming at a studio in North Point.

I must warn you: this is a rather monotonous track — chill, but monotonous. The best part is probably toward the end, when Ariel starts experimenting…

11 Signs That You’ve Left the U.S. and Returned to Canada

  1. You order a turkey sandwich from a fast-food restaurant at the airport and it comes with real vegetables, a whole wheat bun, freshly cooked bacon, and a dash of sweet honey. (It’s also warm.)

  2. You order a doughnut and it is half the size of its typical American counterpart, significantly less sweet, and made from whole wheat bread.

  3. You notice that the customs officers screening you are of Middle Eastern descent.

  4. You hear immigration officers chatting with travellers about their families and personal lives. (“I have 3 children too! Hope you love Canada!”)

  5. You step off the plane and the gate opens into a towering rock wall with a sunlit waterfall cascading down the middle.

  6. You breathe in deeply to savour the crisp, fresh air — and then remember that you’re still in the airport.

  7. You notice a striking number of male security officers with tall, slender frames, perfectly coiffed hair, hipster glasses, and well-maintained beards. None of them looks the least bit threatening.

  8. Similarly, you come across a group of young, Canadian soldiers (both male and female). The men are looking at each other peacefully. The women are shopping for makeup. They look unjaded and nice.

  9. While walking to your gate, you notice that beside you is a 200 metre-long photo display showcasing hundreds of international foods — including kimchee, dim sum and chicken feet.

  10. When you leave the airport, you pass by a bright pink car covered with heart-shaped flowers, advertising a home nursing service.

  11. You are happy to be home :)

Vancouver in the spring. Having my longboard with me has paid off tremendously.  Vancouver in the spring. Having my longboard with me has paid off tremendously.  Vancouver in the spring. Having my longboard with me has paid off tremendously. 

Vancouver in the spring. Having my longboard with me has paid off tremendously. 


My intent with this project was to illustrate the grandeur of Hong Kong that most people would never get to see.

Well, you definitely succeeded. This is spectacular.