Beyond the Rhetoric


Grammar 101: Extract or Exact Revenge?

October 20th, 2014 by Michael Kwan

Grammar 101 with Michael Kwan

Perhaps you’ve heard the line in a Hollywood blockbuster involving a superhero and his quest for vengeance. Maybe you’ve heard it in the context of a video game or television show filled with explosive action and intense drama. When a character says that he will not rest until he exacts his revenge, what exactly does that mean? Or maybe he wants to extract his revenge instead?

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Sunday Snippet: Colin Grant

October 19th, 2014 by Michael Kwan

Sunday Snippet: Colin Grant

“And the old adage that with age comes wisdom is not true. With age comes the veneer of respectability and a veneer of uncomfortable truths.”

We all like to think that we get a little bit wiser with each passing day. We like to think that we learn from experience, gaining those extra touches of wisdom by suffering through our failures and celebrating our successes. We look upon the younger generation with a sense of quiet resignation, sighing over the ignorance and unbridled overconfidence of youth. Kids these days, right?

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Five Ways Adalynn’s Childhood Will Differ from Mine

October 17th, 2014 by Michael Kwan


The generation gap is obvious enough. For my parents’ generation, color television may have still been relatively new and the channel selection was certainly more limited. For my parents, it was a struggle to make a new life for themselves in Canada, whereas I’m firmly established and ensconced as a Canadian. When Adalynn showed up last month, it got me thinking that I’d be reliving some form of my own childhood all over again.

Except, this time, it would be completely different.

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The Android Apps I Used the Most in 2014

October 16th, 2014 by Michael Kwan

The Android Apps I Used the Most in 2014

Yesterday, my friend Bob posted about the iPhone apps that he used the most this year, so I thought I’d follow with the Android apps that found the most use on my smartphone in 2014. Some are for fun, some are for work, and most likely fit somewhere in between. Who needs work-life balance when you have work-life integration, right?

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What’s Up Wednesdays: The Blogging Life

October 15th, 2014 by Michael Kwan

Sunset blogging

This week’s speedlink kicks off with Paul Gannon explaining why your blog shouldn’t have a homepage. He disagrees with the many blogging professionals who say that your homepage acts like a storefront meant to entice customers through the door. A visitor reading your homepage is already in the store and your job now is to close the sale with a landing page instead. Give them what they want.

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Personal Interests I’d Like to Explore Further

October 14th, 2014 by Michael Kwan

Vancouver Film School Summer Intensives 2010

Life is incredibly short and that’s a big reason why you’ve always been told to “do what you love.” Unfortunately, life circumstances being what they are, I’d say a good number of people are “stuck” in careers that they despise. And even when you do have a job that you love, you’re going to encounter your fair share of low moments. And that’s why it’s even more important to dedicate some time exploring personal interests.

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I Am Thankful For…

October 13th, 2014 by Michael Kwan

Thanksgiving Dealies

American Thanksgiving isn’t until next month, but we like to celebrate Turkey Day a little earlier here in Canada. And with the scent of pumpkin spice in the air, we also take this time to reflect on what we are thankful for in our lives. As much as I may gripe about this or that, I also recognize just how fortunate I am to be who I am, where I am, with the people that I am.

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Sunday Snippet: John Steinbeck (1902-1968)

October 12th, 2014 by Michael Kwan

Sunday Snippet: John Steinbeck

“The writer must believe that what he is doing is the most important thing in the world. And he must hold to this illusion even when he knows it is not true.”

I suppose it’s not terribly surprising that I am oftentimes drawn to quotes by writers about writing, given that I make my living as a freelance writer myself. How meta. Language is an incredibly powerful tool that can move armies and document the human experience. Sure, a picture may be worth a thousand words, but carefully crafted words can be worth thousands of pictures too.

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