Credit: Ruth Chan (

A friend asked this of me: “Please let me know if you have suggestions for how I could be a stronger ally. I’m always looking for ways to improve myself. I don’t want you to just be seen and heard: I want you to be safe and well. And his words really moved me.

I want to share the response I gave him in case anyone else feels helpless this week and wants to do more:

  • Elevating minority voices is a good first step as an ally (which is why it means a lot that people re-shared my last post)…

Credit: Jennifer Spraguea from the art exhibit “What Were You Wearing?” at the University of Kansas.

The cruel murder of Sarah Everard and the shootings in Atlanta have hurt me to my core. It’s been a brutal week for women and for Asians, and as a member of both affected groups it serves as a reminder that I am not safe.

Feeling safe is a privilege that not all of us have.

I think about this every time I’m in a white friend’s car and they honk or shout angrily when someone cuts them off. Growing up in a town where most people didn’t look like me, I was taught to always be aware of how…

A lesson on compassion

Just now, I arrived home to find a drunk older woman falling asleep on my doorstep with a bottle of vodka in hand. I greeted her with my usual salutation (“how’s it going?”), assuming she’d grunt, scoot down a few feet, and let me enter my house before going back to sleep. Instead, she took my greeting literally and began to speak. Her mumblings often tumbled into tangents—she interrupted herself several times to tell me I was beautiful, for instance—and I had to coax her to string her thoughts together. It turns out things were not good. She had cancer…

Reflecting on a life worth living

The entire Facebook community was shaken today when we found out we lost one of our own in a motorcycle accident. Josef Desimone (more affectionately known as “Chef Josef”) was not only our executive chef and a known-presence on campus, but also a bold personality whose laughter and mischief will be remembered from Menlo Park, CA to Dublin, Ireland, from Austin, TX to Hyderabad, India.

I had the joy of drinking with him and chatting with him several times, but I won’t wax poetic now and pretend we were closer than we were. …

Michelle Fang

Daydreamer, nightdreamer.

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