Novel excerpts: My herbalist father

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On this Father's Day, 2023, I'd like to share two excerpts from my forthcoming novel about the Chinese immigration experience through Angel Island in the early 1900's (Bridge Across The Sky, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, Fall 2024) that were inspired by memories of my father.

The opening stanza of the novel is based on the only story I ever heard my father tell about his younger days.… [more]

Social butterflying

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Starting in 2023, I'll be expanding my social media presence to include two promising would-be Twitter/Facebook replacements: Post and Mastodon.

Update 5/23/2024: Post is shutting down! So I'm replacing it with Bluesky. I've also ended my Haiku Diem and Trumpbert posts to Twitter/X due to its…well, Elon Muskiness.

I'm especially interested in the potential of Mastodon. You can read my thoughts about it here.… [more]

The Company We Keep: Abortion

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This is the first of a series of posts I'll be making about how political positions we hold compare with the policies of the other countries of the world. Often, the propaganda of the political parties within this country can give us a distorted view of what's normal, and the "echo chambers" that we create for ourselves through our social media circles and our choice of news sources can distort that view even more.… [more]

Twin Monarchs Chess Problems

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I've invented, or maybe just reinvented, a new kind of chess problem that is (I hope) immune to being solved by chess engines. It involves one or both sides having two kings!

Other than that, all the other rules of the game stay the same, so these problems still feel like normal chess problems. They just involve these two extra rules dealing with the new situations that can arise when you have two kings:

  1. The only way to checkmate a player is to checkmate both kings simultaneously.

All the USPS petitions (and more)

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This is a list of all the biggest petitions I can find related to saving the Post Office from GOP attacks that Donald Trump recently admitted (in another of those classic blurts that must make his team cringe) are intended specifically to suppress the November 2020 vote.

Please sign them all, and let me know if I missed any.

Another good idea I've seen passed around is to directly support the USPS by buying stamps.… [more]

That The Power Might Take Knee

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In the course of the protests sweeping our nation, police in many cities transformed potentially incendiary standoffs into powerful visions of unity and hope by kneeling, marching, and mourning with the protesters they swear to serve and protect. Not all of them maintained that stance, but many did. I've written this anthem to celebrate the moments they created. It can be sung to the tune of our national anthem.… [more]