Author: Michael Kwan

Sunday Snippet: Dave Chappelle

Good people of Detroit, hear me. Hear me now. You will never get your [expletive] money back. I said, “I’m like Evel Knievel. I get paid for the attempt. I didn’t promise this [expletive] would be good.” After far too many years of shying away from the spotlight, Dave Chappelle propelled himself back into the public discourse by hosting Saturday Night Live last December. More recently, Netflix bought the rights to three stand-up comedy specials, two of which are available for streaming right now. Maybe he needs the money. Maybe he craves the attention again. Maybe it was something...

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Fraser Park Restaurant and the Epic German Breakfast

As frustrating and as stressful as the week may be, all of those worries melt away — if only for an hour or two — when you get to enjoy a terrific weekend brunch. This place has been on our “we’ve got to eat here” list for far too long, so it was about time we went to see what all the hub-bub was all about. Fraser Park Restaurant is located at 103-4663 Byrne Road, south of Marine Way in Burnaby, tucked away in the middle of an industrial area. You really wouldn’t know such a treasured local gem...

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Why I Blog (2017 Edition)

Every once in a while, I get asked why I blog. Admittedly, it’s a question I ask myself now and again too. Not including all the writing I did before on my old websites or the blogging I’ve written from my freelance clients over the years, I’ve published 3,500 blog posts on Beyond the Rhetoric alone. That’s a lot. And I keep doing it, more than ten years later. Count those old sites and I’ve been “blogging” for almost two decades. So, why do it? An Insatiable Compulsion to Create For as long as I can remember, I liked...

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Vlog #16: Adulting Is Hard (So Deal with It)

About a year and a half ago, I addressed some of the harsh realities of adulthood. I talked about being the main point of contact for our realtor and our mortgage broker, for instance, and how I took on many of the responsibilities for my dad’s final arrangements after he passed away. It’s like I had to grow up overnight, but maybe growing up was well overdue. In this week’s vlog, I ponder about such things. It’s a weird feeling, to be honest. There is a monumental divide between what I understand intellectually and how I see myself in...

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Sunday Snippet: Greg McKeown on Essentialism

In the many hours Geoff spent resting he came to see an interesting paradox in his addiction to achievement: for a type A personality, it is not hard to push oneself hard. Pushing oneself to the limit is easy! The real challenge for the person who thrives on challenges is not to work hard. He explains to any overachievers: “If you think you are so tough you can do anything I have a challenge for you. If you really want to do something hard: say no to an opportunity so you can take a nap.” I have a problem....

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Kombucha vs. Konbucha vs. Kabocha: What’s the Difference?

As I dive deeper and deeper into this increasingly confusing world of health and wellness, I am bombarded by more and more terminology. By now, most of us have grown familiar with labels like GMO free, gluten free, reduced sodium and organically sourced. And then you start to come across words that sound remarkably similar, but refer to entirely different things. That has been exactly my experience with kombucha, konbucha and kabocha. What’s up with all these Ks and buchas? Kombucha Is a Fermented Tea If you’re looking for a little pick me up that’s arguably healthier than coffee...

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Idiomatica: Batten Down the Hatches

English is filled with all sorts of idioms and phrases where the original meaning is mostly lost on the general population. We’re not talking about actual eggs and chickens when we discuss nest eggs, just as we aren’t illuminating a dark space when we hold a candle to something. But in both these cases, it’s unlikely you’ll struggle with the spelling. That’s because we still use the words “eggs” and “candle” in their non-idiomatic forms. Spelling becomes more of a challenge when you have a turn of phrase where the words aren’t so commonly used, at least among regular...

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Vlog #15: A Little Foodie Adventure

I like to eat. This is hardly a secret. In fact, when I asked my Facebook friends to name something I love, they came back with two main answers: my daughter and food. There’s a reason why I call myself a “voracious foodie” and why my Instagram profile lists me as a “foodporn aficionado.” One of my favorite things to do is to try new restaurants, so we decided to go on a bit of a foodie adventure for this week’s vlog. For the first stop on our culinary journey, we enjoyed some weekend brunch at The Gray Olive...

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Sunday Snippet: Robert Waldinger on Happiness

So what have we learned? What are the lessons that come from the tens of thousands of pages of information that we’ve generated on these lives? Well, the lessons aren’t about wealth or fame or working harder and harder. The clearest message that we get from this 75-year study is this: Good relationships keep us happier and healthier. Period. I’ve written extensively on the topic of happiness. The single greatest reason why we do anything, when you boil it all down, is that we think it will make us happy. We think we’ll be happy when we buy that...

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Trying to Explain Flow to Non-Creatives

Let me preface this by saying that people who work in creative fields are not necessarily any smarter, better, or harder working than people who work in non-creative fields. It’s just that the approach to work is an inherently different kind of beast and requires a wholly different manner of thinking. This is perhaps best explored through the ethereal concept of flow, which oftentimes doesn’t make much sense to anyone. Around this time last year, I talked about flow in the context of the third shift. I was solo parenting that night and after putting the little one to...

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Michael Kwan
Hi, I'm Michael. By day, I'm a freelance writer. By night, I'm still a freelance writer. I'm also a proud father, a voracious foodie, an avid traveler, a gadget geek, and a thinker who thinks he might be thinking too much. Beyond the Rhetoric is a reflection of my eclectic entrepreneurial life.

Read more about me and what I can do for you.



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