a decade under the influence


Taking Back Sunday – A decade under the influence

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So I’m marking my tenth year with The Paper today — true to form, I’m doing so at work. It seems fitting. Can you imagine ten years going by? I have a hard time fully grasping it myself, but here I am. I still remember introducing myself to class as someone who has been with the same company for the past ten years and getting more gasps of disbelief than that time I told them I was in a relationship with a woman for eight. Haha.

our printer did a thing.

A photo posted by kate pedroso (@thegshift) on

Wipe you clean with dirty hands

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May has been a good month. I have been sending out Tinyletters instead of blogging, and writing a ridiculous amount of things that never see the legitimate light of day. My sister graduated from med school the other day. I’m all right. Everything’s quite all right 🙂

this is a panda post

Was cleaning out the SD card I brought to China two weeks ago and found these absolutely adorable panda photos and thought, Why haven’t I uploaded these?!

Here you go. All of them were taken at the Chengdu Research Base for Giant Panda Breeding, the world’s largest, with at least 70 pandas on-site, including nine newborns. YAY.

Panda says hi
Panda says hi
Push mo yan teh! Go for it!
Push mo yan teh! Go for it!
This panda is my spirit animal.
This panda is my spirit animal.
Yes, I know that panda's a great climber, but check out that STURDY TREE yes?
Yes, I know that panda’s a great climber, but check out that STURDY TREE yes?
Look at this frolicking cuties omnomnomnom--
Look at this frolicking cuties omnomnomnom–

hello october: china, pt 2

We spent the rest of the trip breezing through Nanning City in Guangxi, and the cities of Haikou and Sanya in Hainan. From Chengdu, we took a plane to Nanning on the 21st, and over the next couple of days we took a peek at the province’s poverty alleviation projects which involved relocation of minority groups from the mountains and visited the actual areas where the minorities lived.

The area we visited was in Guangxi’s Du’an county, one of Guangxi’s poorest. The officials we spoke with related their efforts at relocating minorities from the mountains and moving them to the flatlands, where it was easier to provide them with electricity, water, livelihood. We visited a clan belonging to the Yao ethnic group, who greeted us with a traditional brass drum performance. The skies were sunny and clear and the dancing made the visit all the more festive.

Here’s a video of Nanning City at night:

We were here for roughly a couple of days. After Nanning, we flew to Haikou in Hainan. I faced this city with a sort of intimidation, as I expected our visit to Haikou’s National Institute for the South China Sea Studies to yield some interesting stories. (Indeed, my story on this briefing was the first to come out among my China stories: China expert expects better ties after 2016)

From Haikou, we spent all day driving to the seaside city of Sanya. Along the way, we visited the site of the Boao Forum and the Li and Miao Ecological Tourism Area in Areca Valley. We had the last of our briefings in Haikou, but in Sanya we still had a lot of writing to do. We were also pleasantly surprised to meet two Filipino entertainers! (I think my story on them is lined up for this Sunday.)

Also: We went to the Nanshan Temple, which has the biggest Buddha I have ever seen: