As I Am

As I Am is a unique collaboration of PAAC writers. Together, our writers explore broad themes related to our identities as Progressive Asian American Christians. “Who are we? Where are we going? What do we have to say?”  We give shape to these questions through the act of written creation. All forms of writing are welcome.

No, What Do You Really Do?

No, What Do You Really Do?

“So what do you do for a living?” I low-key hate this question, because I never know how to respond. I’m a web designer. And a copywriter. I’m also trained as an email strategist by one of the best in the field! Plus I’m a blogger, but...not that kind of blogger...?...

Why Not?

Why Not?

If you were asked to come up with a list of occupations that would induce the most amount of fear and shame for a traditional, conservative Christian Asian parent to a firstborn male son, you could do no better than some combination of “Pastor – Photographer – Stay At...

An Ovation

An Ovation

This outfit is the victory in a long war I’ve been waging with my Mom about church clothes. We’ve negotiated a tenuous compromise where I don’t have to wear a dress anymore, but I have to wear something that we both agree is “nice”.
Stories of Hope, Murmurs of Pain

Stories of Hope, Murmurs of Pain

“I loved going to school,” my grandma always says when she’s about to recount one of her favorite and oft-repeated memories of her elementary school years. Signaling to me with her hand softly grasping mine, and a nostalgic twinkle in her eye, my halmoni is letting me...

My Father’s Words

My Father’s Words

“The only reason you’re not class president is because you don’t have a penis.” My mother said this to me when I was 6 years old. Well, she didn’t say ‘penis’, she said ‘pepper’, a Korean euphemism. I was only in the 1st grade, but it was a big deal. Competition to be...

The Yellow Woman’s Burden

The yellow woman’s burden is holding.We Hold family expectations of perfection. Silence.To uphold tradition is asian. Culture.To uphold progress is American. Innovation.To hold the family & others is asian. To hold the self & career is American.To hold...

Of Love, Legacy, Resistance, and Rainbow: A Stonewall Reflection

Of Love, Legacy, Resistance, and Rainbow: A Stonewall Reflection

[TW: mentions of depression and suicide] During a police raid of the Stonewall Inn in New York City on June 28th, 1969, queer folks threw broken bottles and bricks in an act of resistance and love. This outpouring of frustration after years of violence upon their...

It’s Okay to Say No

It’s Okay to Say No

Learning to say no to my mother saved our relationship. You have to understand, my mother is a freight train. She will steamroller you with her thoughts, opinions, and judgments. You can feel her searing intensity, especially when she’s getting worked up. Did I...

Kneeling for My Parents

Kneeling for My Parents

As we knelt and as the orchestral recording blasted on, I thought of my parents; I thought of how they had spontaneously dropped off a beautiful bouquet of flowers before this game, before they knew what we were planning to do,
I Am Your Legacy

I Am Your Legacy

I’ve made peace with the tenuous understanding that we have. I’m scared of imagining a relationship with my family that’s not fraught with shame and misunderstandings.
Letter: As I Am

Letter: As I Am

“Tribalism” has taken a beating in the lexicological landscape these days, and for good reason. To be tribal is to be unthinking, violent, mean. It’s been invoked to describe the growing divisions in our body politic. A tribe is an echo chamber - isolationist. To find...

First Date Worst Date Party Post

First Date Worst Date Party Post

To round out our blockbuster month of first dates and worst dates, here's a crowd-sourced party post of dating stories. Enjoy the schadenfreude but please refrain from trying to guess (publicly or privately) who wrote each story, unless the author chooses to reveal...

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