{ Hello }

You guys seem nice, so I'm going to be real honest with you. Here goes:

My name's Daniel. I was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY and am a proud and outspoken half-Asian. I turned 21 in August and can assure you that, no, your life doesn't change, but yes, your liver does begin to loathe you. My goals in the next five years are to go skydiving, become fluent in four languages, and to graduate.

Transitioning to Oberlin wasn't as hard as I had imagined, and that's saying a lot for a person who, prior to enrolling, had scarcely been outside the city. There's a lot to love about living in small-town Oberlin - stars are actually quite pretty now that I can see them, grassy fields are lovely things to lie on, and a hill-less landscape makes biking a breeze. But I must say that at heart, I will always be a consummate New Yorker - jaywalking, subway-riding, wise-talking, Gray's Papaya-eating, and all.

I'm a senior, Creative Writing and East Asian Studies double major. My hope is to use my liberal arts degree to become a travel writer (slash) foreign broadcast correspondent in Asia. I've taken Japanese for five years and spent the fall of my junior year studying abroad in Osaka, Japan. I lived with a host family that barely spoke any English and made food that was criminally delicious.

At Oberlin, what it is that I do is hard to narrow down. It's amazing how effectively friends can convince you to "get involved" over the course of three years. I have taught local elementary school kids about the wonders of manatees, edited and laid-out a literary magazine, washed dishes for a year at one of the campus dining halls, co-hosted a weekly jazz radio show on Oberlin's own WOBC, helped to plan two biennial Asian American student conferences, and was the captain of an 0-10 intramural basketball team (who said Oberlin students weren't sporty?). I was an RA for two years, worked in the Multicultural Resource Center, and practically live in the classroom at Mudd library.

I have an unnatural obsession with white rice, and if I could, I would eat everything with chopsticks. My interests include parentheses, '90s one-hit wonders, marzipan, endorphins, juggling, love letters, and pontificating on my life (read: this bio).

I may simultaneously be the most interesting and most boring person you'll ever meet.



{ Entries }

07.24.09

Life After Oberlin: New Blog

Think of it as essentially this blog (more long-form stories, anecdotes, photos), but with a slightly different focus. Now that I have graduated from my dear alma mater, I figured it was time to branch out a little on my own.
06.16.09

Have Diploma, Will Travel (Back to College?)

It turns out that for a pair of liberal college campuses, both boasting large feeder populations from elite(ist) NYC high schools, Cornell and Oberlin couldn't be more different.
05.20.09

The Joys of Cooperative Dining

Thankfully, there were senior members who talked me through the best ways to peel garlic, fry potatoes, and make an omelet. Never would I have imagined that a group of students could be efficient and capable enough to orchestrate what functioned like a self-contained dining hall.
05.10.09

Liberal Arts Meets Big Business

In high school, due surely to a lack of adequate allowance, I sold cans of soda that I bought in bulk from Costco and kept stored in a portable cooler to students just coming out of gym class. It would follow that a lifetime's worth of amateur experience culminated in my participation in the Entrepreneurship Scholars program.
04.19.09

On Team Sports and Team Shirts

Incredibly disillusioned by my middle school experience--finishing my season on the second string basketball team with a total of two rebounds and a steal--I was hopeful that college could renew my muddled notions about playing basketball for something bigger than myself.
04.05.09

Getting Lucky in Kentucky (Part II)

The experience served to strengthen my conviction as an omnivore and made me truly realize the importance of the hunter-gatherer culture that had been passed down by our forebears. It didn't hurt that the chicken was also some of the best I had ever eaten.
04.04.09

Getting Lucky in Kentucky

If someone told me six months ago that for spring break of my senior year I would be living on a farm in rural Kentucky for nine days with scarcely any internet or phone and sharing a room with eleven people I had never met before, I would have laughed in their face. All I can say is what a difference a week makes.
03.10.09

Teaching English as a Second Language

The challenge over the month came in donning both roles--as both a teacher and a student--all while being reassured along the way that we were likely to catch dengue fever, get taken hostage at a Jakarta airport, and be heaved out of a moving train on our way to Moscow.
02.19.09

Making Modern Art at the Museum of Modern Art

There's more to the New York art scene than pretentiousness and Andy Warhol, but you certainly won't find it in this post. What you will find is a retrospective of some of the various art--both deliberate and not--that we happened to come across during our afternoon visit.
01.31.09

Almost Famous

Not impressed? Well, I bet you won't believe what arrived in my mailbox this morning.
01.29.09

Pizza Night at Keep

I learned that there is a certain art to pie-making, kneading from the center out, making sure that the middle isn't too thin, and being careful to leave a slightly raised border along the outside so there's some semblance of crust after it bakes.
12.30.08

The Long Road to a Graduation Speech

I don't know what it is about giving a speech that makes it so affecting, its ability to connect with and instill hope and pride in the hearts of listeners. All I knew at the time was that it was something I had to experience doing.
12.22.08

Two Years in Rural China

It is fitting that even in my last semester here at Oberlin, I am fortunate enough to be taking advantage of one more opportunity that this school has offered--one that is wholly unique to graduates of Oberlin. For two years, I will be teaching English in the northern Chinese province of Taigu through the Oberlin Shansi two-year fellowship program.
11.18.08

Like a College Visit with Less Clothing

Over this past weekend, I decided to make a trip out to Tufts University in Medford, MA to see a group of friends perform in a Burlesque Troupe that they helped to found on campus. Little did I know that I would get the added bonus of recreating the lore of my junior year college trips.
11.06.08

"Obama-rama" Strikes Oberlin

It is hard for me to describe the atmosphere I witnessed that night, but it was certainly nothing like I had ever experienced before. Surrounded by friends and strangers, new faces and old, it hardly mattered whether you knew the person standing next to you or not--but you were inevitably going to give them a hug.

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