Author: Michael Kwan

Sunday Snippet: On Fools and Wisdom

A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer. It’s April Fools’ Day, so anything you read on the Internet today should be taken with a grain of salt. Actually, that’s probably true every day and it’s probably not in your best interest to automatically take everything at face value. Someone might tell you that they got hired by The New York Times or something. Only fools would believe that story. That’s not what I’m doing with this foolish edition of the Sunday Snippet. Instead, we’re turning our attention...

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Word of the Day: Apocryphal

As a professional writer, I have a rather intimate relationship with words. I am deeply passionate about the power of language, particularly when it comes to storytelling. Naturally, I can’t possibly know everything (and I never will), but that won’t stop me from trying. And that’s how I happened to come across “apocryphal” the other day. First, a little bit of context. How many words do you think are in the English language? Estimates vary considerably, as there is no official count to be found anywhere. Merriam-Webster puts the number somewhere around one million and that includes scientific terms...

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What’s Up Wednesdays: I Need a Break

As I mentioned in yesterday’s vlog, it’s been almost a year since we last went on a proper vacation as a family. With that in mind, let’s kick off this month’s speedlink with some travel-related posts before digging into some other topic areas, shall we? Looking for a peaceful getaway from Vancouver that’s only a short ferry ride away? Valley Mom Kristyl Clark shares some of her thoughts on finding serenity in Sooke, B.C. Located an hour’s drive away from downtown Victoria, Sooke is a charming, quiet community with stunning views, talented local craftspeople, and some perfect hidden spots...

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Vlog #69: 20 Questions and 20 Answers

I’d like to think that I’ve always been pretty open, honest and authentic in this space. I’ve invited you into both my personal and my professional life, giving you a glimpse into what it’s like to be Michael Kwan. And yes, I’ve even let you get into my head a few times too. Well, last week, I got tagged by Joseph Planta from The Commentary to answer 20 questions about myself. Rather than simply answer these questions on Facebook, I decided to make a video about it. So, here we are. It was some time last summer that I...

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Sunday Snippet: Carol Shields (1935-2003)

We’ll have good years and bad years. And we can afford both. Every hour will not be filled with meaning and accomplishment as the world measures such things, but there will be compensating hours so rich, so full, so humanly satisfying that we will become partners with time and not victims of it. Most of us end up seeing our lives not as an ascending line of achievement but as a series of highly interesting chapters. As someone who makes his living from writing (and has been doing so for over a decade), I am admittedly not terribly familiar...

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Grammar 101: Gibe and Jibe Are Not the Same

A couple of years ago, I wrote a Grammar 101 post outlining the difference between jibe and jive. If you get along or agree with something, you might say that you jibe with it. The look of this car really jibes with my personal style. But did you know there’s another word — gibe — that is pronounced exactly the same way but has an entirely different meaning? And to further add to the confusion, the word “jibe” also has the alternate spelling “gybe” (though it is less common). In this way, if you say that Harry and Sally...

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Stop Telling People “It Could Be Worse”

I get it. I mean, I catch myself doing it too. You want to be the good friend and want them to feel better, so you do your very best to provide some sense of comfort. I know that I catch myself going into advice-giving mode, because sometimes it’s the only way I know how to help… even if it’s not actually helping, even if it’s not what my friend actually needs right now. Sometimes, all your friend needs is a sympathetic ear to listen as they talk their way through their situation. Sometimes, they just want to feel...

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Vlog #68: The PAW Patrol Pup-tacular Program

A lot of things change when you become a mom or a dad for the first time. I don’t follow professional sports nearly as much as I once did, for example. Instead, my world has been overrun by all sorts of children’s programming. Far and away one of the most popular shows in this household, like so many other households, is PAW Patrol. And now we’ve added to our PAW Patrol toy collection with some new transforming vehicles for 2018.   You might remember when Addie and I went through a grab bag of Goody hair accessories a couple...

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Sunday Snippet: William Hill (This Is Us)

It feels like all these beautiful pieces of life are flying around me and I’m trying to catch them. When my granddaughter falls asleep in my lap, I try to catch the feeling of her breathing against me. And when I make my son laugh, I try to catch the sound of him laughing. How it rolls up from his chest. When This Is Us first debuted on NBC back in the fall of 2016, I didn’t really take note of it. For a number of reasons, we don’t really follow network television all that much anymore. By the...

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Grammar 101: Someday or Some Day

Sometimes, it’s not spelling that makes all the difference. It’s choosing whether or not to write something as one word or two. That extra space (or its absence) is important, just like how a simple hyphen can transform “recreation” (an activity you do for fun) to “re-creation” (the act of creating something again). So, what’s the difference between writing “someday” as one word and “some day” as two? The Indefinite Someday When written as a single word, someday is an adverb that refers to something that will happen at some indeterminate and indefinite time in the future. It’s some...

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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.