Beyond the Wings: May 2019

Being busy is hardly anything to be proud of, but despite still being underemployed (I missed out on a book translation gig I really wanted), I am managing to fill the days with activities I find meaningful or expect to bear fruit in years to come.


Every day I plug away at Spanish and can now make out bits and pieces of conversations I hear. I am also exercising regularly and keeping abreast of dreams and reflections in the manner of ‘A Life of One’s Own’ by Marion Milner.

This is all very therapeutic. It’s a cultural taboo, but to suggest that psychotherapy is only for mentally ill people is like saying only unfit people should go to the gym, or only stupid people should read.

I also turned down an offer of a very good job in China. As tempting as it was, returning to Asia at this point would probably cause more problems than it solves.


This month I have made very pleasing progress on my novel. I expect to finish the first draft this year. I have also plugged away at my MBA thesis, encountering a lot of game-changing ideas and facts along the way.

Researching a novel involves reading a lot of stuff one would read for pleasure. An MBA involves a lot of books and academic papers that nobody would read without having an exam to pass. Both have already proven to be worthwhile activities and may even make some money someday.

On the lighter side, I have had a very successful open mic night performing this song among others:

Lastly, my latest for LA Review of Books China Channel is on translating Tibetan literature.

Wider World

 I was and am a remainer and am not the slightest bit surprised by what a shitshow Brexit has been. But, remainers can also be annoying sometimes.

Tulsi Gabbard gave a very impressive interview on The Joe Rogan Experience. As presidential candidates go, she is certainly one of the more electable democrats. However, I still think Trump is the favourite for re-election at this point.

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