Am I conveniently being the person everyone wants me to be?

Image for post
Image for post
Photography by Kentaro Takahashi on The New York Times

After observing my own patterns of reading, I came to the realization that I love reading Asian female authors’ work. From Yiyun Li to Mieko Kawakami and Sayaka Murata (the author of Convenience Store Woman), their characters represent boldness against a world that questions their nonconformity. “You are not normal,” they are told.

I stumbled upon the latest book from the list of suggestions by the Haruki Murakami Book Club. As I finished Mieko Kawakami’s Breasts and Eggs about a month ago, the powerful aftertaste from reading that book in some way drew my attention to the Convenience Store Woman


Thank you for the 3R's proposal. It's true that what we are looking at will be based primarily on humanity; if we succeed in maintaining the virtue while harnessing the power of AI, we can expect so many opportunities. Just wondering about your thoughts on how lower and middle-income countries (LMIC) and their governments can work this out? I believe when jobs are displaced, many of these countries will be affected as the "production" lines are usually in these countries - to supply for the developed nations. And what do you think about the ethics in AI? Would you say we need to "relearn" about how ethics can be "practically" used in AI and other futuristic implementation? I'm planning a post-doc in that area and hope to get your kind inputs on that if possible. :) Thanks and stay safe!


Hi Patsy, thanks so much for reading it and raising this question. Indeed, I absolutely agree with you that Chinese especially those from People's Republic of China care a lot about education and many have sent their children abroad to pursue better education if lacking the opportunities to enter top universities in the country. I think the difference raised by Min Jin Lee relates a lot to the history of Korea (both South and North) when they fought in the wars and how their geographical context makes Korea being "pressured" by the mega power nations surrounding them. As for China, I am unable to give a very comprehensive explanation on that but I would argue that the situation would be even more complex - history, economy, political factors etc.

May I know what should I do if I would like to publish this on Fourth Wave? :)


From the award-winning K-drama Sky Castle to Pachinko by Min Jin Lee, this is why Koreans give us powerful narratives

Image for post
Image for post
Source: https://asianwiki.com/SKY_Castle

I am not going to lie: I did not finish watching SKY Castle before I wrote this, and have yet to read Pachinko. Last year, as a matter of curiosity, I started watching SKY Castle and left it at the 6th episode. Reason: It was too “cutthroat” and gave me a sense of extremity. Too often in the drama, I was perplexed by how far the parents of young children could go: competing to enroll their children into the top universities in Korea and snatching away their childhood. (Trust me: The traumas are far more intense than what I’ve written…


What is left of a woman after a traumatic loss?

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Manki Kim on Unsplash

“Hey, my mom said, this tea if drunk too much is not good for a woman’s womb.”

Coincidentally, I watched Pieces of a Woman after I heard this advice from a friend. To be exact, from her mother. You might have heard this from your mother, someone’s mother, or just literally from anyone if you live in Asia.

The Most Valuable Part (MVP) of a Woman

That made me wonder yet again, on a very intense afternoon, not about the amount of work I have to do but the message from Pieces of a Woman (now streaming on Netflix). While I was preparing for a gender awareness workshop…


Hint: It is not the distance that matters.

Image for post
Image for post
A little more than 5 years ago, I learned to move, walk, and run. (The photo was taken by the author.)

I learned about running in 2014 when I started a one-year-contract job in Putrajaya, the federal administrative capital of Malaysia. It was a perfect place to start a habit due to the nature of the jobs available are highly 9-to-5. You will not get better scenery for your eyes during your outdoor workout. Sometimes you might spot a cruise ship or ferry passing by at dusk. My work was repetitious and I used to walk to the lake behind the office during lunchtime just to get some air.

That was when I started walking. Everyday. At 1pm with my office…


“We are more than saving lives.”

Image for post
Image for post
Source: https://www.kdramapal.com/drama/doctor-john/

I watched Hospital Playlist (2020), Life (2018), The Doctors (2016), and Dr. Romantic 2 (2020) in the last five months. Subsequently, I have chosen Doctor John as my December’s hospital TV series. It turned out that its genre, themes, and tone are truly satisfying for my tastebuds. While juggling between research and running online workshops in the span of two weeks, watching the story of Cha Yo-han (Doctor John) unfold was a slow burn. Just like what the show was trying to tell about “death”.

Death is a process. It doesn’t happen in a moment.

For many people who embrace…


Image for post
Image for post
放了十天,一個小時里就讀完的回憶紀錄。


Is your self ready to do more than innovating?

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Sara Codair on Unsplash

As educators, we always believe that the path of learning about innovation will open the window to innovation. For the last five days, I have discovered, unlearned, and relearned about the social innovation iceberg. As a mentor for five young changemakers in the Youth Co:Lab Malaysia Bootcamp, I witnessed how young innovators challenge the boundary between being a social innovator and creating innovative solutions.

Based on Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, social innovation is the process of developing and deploying effective solutions to challenging and often systemic social and environmental issues…

Yong Yee Chong

I am a fellow at University of Malaya and I write about reflective learnings through the lenses of gender and sports.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store