The real reason I speak Spanish: how trifles can transform your life

People are often surprised and curious that I am fluent in Spanish. It is a random language for an Australian – let alone an Asian Australian – to dedicate themselves to. We’re a multicultural but otherwise monolingual kinda nation and learning Spanish presents you with just the one job prospect: teaching Spanish. I enjoy surprising and impressing people with this. I enjoy that it’s a … Continue reading The real reason I speak Spanish: how trifles can transform your life

Under (or over) the influence

The difference between a celebrity and an influencer I’m not sure when we stopped using the word celebrity in favour of the word influencer, but I feel like it happened around the time Instagram took off. It seems that once you have several thousand followers, you’re an influencer. Which means you’re kind of a celebrity. Which means you’re famous. Which means … what exactly? For … Continue reading Under (or over) the influence

The H is silent

My first name begins with a silent letter so alliteration exercises in primary school weren’t fun. “Happy Hsu-Ann” doesn’t alliterate and “super Hsu-Ann” looks like it doesn’t alliterate even though it does. Yet the silent H is a familiar and essential part of who I am. (So is the awkward pause and ensuing mispronunciation every time someone realises they’re going to have to read my … Continue reading The H is silent

Nomad no more

Australians boast the inglorious irony of being the best off people in this pandemic and yet we’re potentially the most resentful about travel restrictions. Gap years are standard before and after uni, many of us look forward to our annual overseas trip and retirement will often consist of cruise ship hopping. But before COVID-19 derailed everyone’s travel plans, I was already wrestling not so much … Continue reading Nomad no more

Lost in leadership: why we need to talk about following well

Leadership I’ve written previously about the first time I was told that I had demonstrated leadership. It was both surprising and super gratifying – for most of my life it has not been a word used often to describe me. You see, I am a beta kinda girl. When other people make comments about my leading well, they mean it as a compliment – as … Continue reading Lost in leadership: why we need to talk about following well

To tweet or not to tweet?

Sometimes I wish I was good at Twitter. It would be proof that I’m not just intelligent but super witty and have something to say about the state of the universe. There may be no “I” in team, but there is definitely “wit” in Twitter.

If I was a tweeter, here’s what I would tweet

Here are a few things that have crossed my mind to tweet but never made it to the Twittersphere … Continue reading To tweet or not to tweet?

On recovering Anglicans, vegetarians and nomads

I like to say my boyfriend is a recovering Anglican. He’s actually not even Anglican, he just happens to go to an Anglican church and I just happen to enjoy having a go at Sydney Anglicans. What I really mean when I say he’s recovering is that he is no longer doctrinal about his faith and how he practises it – in fact, he’s ardently against legalism.

Similarly … Continue reading On recovering Anglicans, vegetarians and nomads

Harmony vs conformity: thirsting for things that fit

I truly believe an element of the divine can be experienced in a stationery shop. Kikki K, surely, must be a shadow of heaven. This is me with the old manila folders that I ordered by colour, just because, when we were clearing out our archives at work: I know many of you understand. There is something hugely satisfying about order, about making things fit … Continue reading Harmony vs conformity: thirsting for things that fit