You would always ask us “When are y’all coming down here?” A Gulf Coast drawl reaching out to us from the other side of the internet.

The rest of our friends got to meet you, that time you came up to Toronto, but I had left the city just a few months before. We always told the story about how we just missed each other in Pearson Airport by a few hours once, when I was flying to Massachusetts to visit my family. The universe couldn’t allow us to be in the same room, you joked. …

I think it’s weird for us, being the centre of attention.

There’s no such thing as a typical East Asian diaspora story, except that the vast majority of us are either first- or second-generation immigrants. No account one person gives can ever be comprehensive.

Many of us are rich, probably the most beloved data cluster by people who would argue that minorities have it pretty good in America. Some of us are very poor, and generally ignored. What separates these two groups is frequently how rich and educated they or their parents were before being allowed to immigrate.

Many of…

My mom told me to write this. Well, she told me to write something. “I write when I have something to say,” I told her. But I’m not going to e-mail a realtor, and I’m not going to call the bank about changing my address so they can set up my RRSP, so I figure I owe her this W. …

I think I was in fifth grade when I read a novel for school set during the Tiananmen Protests, and, eventually, the Tiananmen Massacre.

My mother, though almost never a dogmatic Communist, took issue with the novel, and the fact that I was being assigned to read it. A ten-year-old Chinese-Canadian has little grasp of the philosophical complexities of being Chinese in a western, democratic country — this conflict was my first hint that there was anything complicated about it at all.

I was told that the People’s Liberation Army had no choice but to disperse the protesters in the…

Here are some things I think about baseball in no particular order:

1. There is far too much baseball, and for that reason there is exactly the correct amount of baseball.

An MLB game clocks in in the neighbourhood of three hours, the longest individual game time of any of the four major North American professional sports organizations. On top of this, each MLB team plays 162 games in a season. There are probably people who watch every game played by their favourite team in its entirety, in the way that one would follow, say, football (American, that is; I’m…

“Can I help you find anything?”

You look up. “Just say ‘No,’” runs through your head. “She doesn’t need to know what you’re looking for. Nobody has to know.”

“Yeah, I’m looking for Crazy Rich Asians, by Kevin Kwan.”

Her lips purse as the corners of her mouth roll up. “Yeah, that’s right,” You think. “I’m an ASIAN dude looking for that book that ASIAN people like about ASIAN people written by that ASIAN dude. Oriental.”

She shows you to the appropriate shelf. “So here’s that one,” she says, handing the tastefully peach-coloured volume to you, “and here are the…

That’s how we write dates in the Forces.

As you level up a character in World of Warcraft, you make your way through many storylines. From levels 40 through 50, closer to the beginning of the ordeal than the end, there are two stories that mean a lot to me. In one, you ride with the caravan of a travelling werewolf saleswoman (she doesn’t sell werewolves; she is one) and her two paladin companions (one an elf, the other a dwarf; they call themselves the Paladin Pals) through a wasteland infested with the undead. …

Feeling not quite conscious in broad daylight in a half empty car just makes the public transportation experience feel somehow more fantastic or romantic or something. …

Ichiro readies himself before his 3000th hit.

Ichiro Suzuki tugs on his sleeve. It’s the same every time. It’s been the same every time for 15 years now. He brandishes the bat at the pitcher, pointed straight up toward the sky. Every time for over 10,000 plate appearances. He brings it in, holding it behind his head, parallel to the ground. It flutters lazily. Every time for 3,000 hits.

They call him simply ‘Ichiro.’ As it is with kings and conquerors and messiahs, we need only his given name to identify him. As it is with legends, lore about him abounds. It’s small wonder that, faced with…

People put candles on painted hearts with the Belgian colors to mourn for the victims at the place de la Bourse in the center of Brussels, March 22, 2016 (AP / Martin Meissner)

I hate doing political science.

I spent four years learning how at what they insisted on repeatedly informing me was one of the most prestigious institutions of learning in the world, and I can’t stand doing it. Even thinking about politics frustrates me. Talking about it is almost physically painful. And I wish you the sincerest of luck if you want to get me to write about it.

I hate doing it, because, like every other navel-gazing presumptuous genius saviour-of-mankind before me, I am always wrong.

If you’ve taken maybe three university-level political science courses in your life, you’ve almost…

Theodore Yan

I like history and baseball

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