Transatlantic review of my book from the UK

One of my blog readers, “Dark Tales,” read my short story and gave shining 5.0 out of 5 stars in Amazon UK! Thank you so much! It’s such a great encouragement and supports out of the blue! I have quoted the delightful description of my book herein:

“A dreamy, engrossing short story well worth the read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 4 January 2021
Thoroughly enjoyed this short story from an author with a unique and characterful style that lends her prose an almost musical quality. Fans of folklore and mythology, in particular, will enjoy the host of references from a writer with a clear passion for fables and a talent for weaving them into her work.”

Turkey and Thanksgiving

This year’s lucky pair of turkeys that received a presidential pardon for not being sent to a slaughterhouse is Chocolate and Chip. The turkey symbolizes American festivity and character distinguished from all other birds of feathers, such as the eagle, the dove, or even the phoenix. So then it’s only natural to find out why the turkey has become the signature bird of the Thanksgiving holiday on Thanksgiving day.


Benjamin Franklin, the amiable and ingenious American polymath founder, associated a virtue of morality, bravery, and strength with the natural characteristics of the turkey native to the American continent. He proposed that the bird be an emblem of the New Country. While the mystical implication of the bird with the New World has traditionally embodied in the cultural context of the pilgrim’s attributes to the nation’s founding in search of religious freedom from the Old World, the real stories about the American bird encompass the endorsement from the historical figures. George Washington proposed a Thanksgiving in 1789 as a day of “public thanksgiving and prayer,” which was chimed by Alexander Hamilton’s acclimation: “No person should abstain from having turkey on Thanksgiving Day.” But the Thanksgiving tradition began in 1863 when President Lincoln proposed the last Thursday in November as a “day of thanksgiving and praise to Almighty God, the beneficent Creator and Ruler of the Universe.” The regular Thanksgiving dinner menu culminated with one Sarah Joseph Hale, a magazine editor. She wrote Lincoln to urge celebrating the day with roast turkey, savory stuffing, gravy sauce, and pumpkin pie in memory of her beloved New England style of feast staple.

Patriotic Turkey: Detail from a vintage Thanksgiving greeting card.


In Europe, the turkey was a poor man’s fanciful feast because it resembled the peacock, a dish fit for the rich. The turkey occupies a dinner table alone as if it could stuff all the hungriest souls for days and nights. I agree with Benjamin Franklin that the turkey is a fit bird to become a bird of national symbol. The eagle may look regal and lofty, but it has no ingenuousness particular to America, which will always be a young country that is still growing and will grow as long as the tradition continues from generation to generation. Happy Thanksgiving.

Beggars can’t be choosers?

Have you ever felt why you are here facing the ugly realities of life, enduring insults right in front of you after you are invited? I have, and the experience is still so fresh that if I don’t manifest it in writing, the grief will knit up the overwrought heart and bid it shatter to pieces, which has already been cracked, broken, then repeated. Job interviews are arguably the most tricky and adrenaline-inducing passage of livelihood for which some introverts have to give in at the expense of our fairy-like stealth, Sanity. You can either win or lose at the impression on the interviewer, who is more often than not less cultivated, let alone understanding humanity, no matter the social status. But then, you should not let your dignity and Sanity be ripped off or broken apart because you deserve a good one.

It all started when I got first called in for a zoom interview last Thursday. It was for the position of part-time legal assistant at a small family law office in Downtown Los Angeles (not to be confused with Downtown Abbey, LOL). The office proprietor, an old man lawyer, was a typical lawyer who must have inspired Shakespeare to exclaim, “Kill all the lawyers!” It was not so much a job interview as an immigration or any bureaucratic interview, I gather, because of the following: 

(1) His question of whether I had any family member or friend with divorce experience is irrelevant, knowing that I had no experience in divorce law. When I said no, he cast a doubtful glance at me;

(2) After the zoom interview, what was the need for a second interview in the office for a part-time position in such a small law office?; 

(3) I referred him to my blog as writing samples at his request, but he never gave me feedback on them;

The interview reminded me of a police interrogation I am familiar with by watching British and American procedural detective TV dramas. He questioned me and observed my facial expressions to find faults. He was cross-examining me with the questions he had already concocted in his petty lawyer mind and insulted my sensitivity. He seemed to be of a typical victorian/Edwardian bourgeoise (not even peerage) would-be employer pleased with himself for being so rich, so successful by his so clever lawyering. 

I am seeking employment to make a living, but I don’t want to work for/under such a rude and unpleasant employer. I wasted my time on earth because of yet another traumatic experience of failing humanity. What change has been improved since the labor movements in the tacit relationship between the worker and the employer when I cannot speak my mind because ignoring it in the oblivious land of forced amnesia will make me fall apart, and I can’t take it anymore? And it didn’t end on that day. He dared to inform me of my not being hired the next day at NIGHT. Thank God for not giving me the job. And I wish it was all just a nightmare, and that’s all.

‘Just So Stories’ by Rudyard Kipling – book review

I believe history is a branch of literature full of events and stories made by artists and artificers weaving facts into myth, and vice versa, into a timeless tapestry of the world that was, is and will be. In that regard, Kipling is an artist who spins beautiful tales of how animals became what they look like into a poetic wheel of ear-delighting and cadenced words aided by gorgeous illustrations distinctively graceful and dazzlingly beautiful.

Kipling’s evolution of animals explains why they look the way they are, such as a Leopard with spots, a Carmel hump, and many more. The stories become a fable and a history of its kind. It’s a literary version of Darwin’s Origin of Species, the wonderful menageries of Man and Beast that cannot live alone despite the differences in species because we are the inhabitants of this world, Earth. But, above all the fantastic tales of wonder, the Cat’s tale stands out in the story and the subject. Kipling’s Cat is proud but not arrogant, independent but affectionate, and vain but graceful. It’s a cat who walks by himself, and everything is alike to him and nothing else. The Cat is a beautiful stranger even if he likes to be a family, a kind of forever loner, the Puss in Boots with a cowboy hat and an empty holster. Kipling’s writer’s eyes saw the romantic solitude in a cat, and the result is one poetic Cat that rhymes well like the graceful way cats do their amazing somersaults.

Just So Stories are not just for children even though it is classified in Children’s literature on the shelves of libraries. It’s a book for everyone who loves legends and magic, who still has a childlike innocence that refused to put away as an adult because it’s in nature. The stories are not for academic analysis or psychoanalysis but simply for the enjoyment of the mind and the delight of the heart. Remember Freud’s saying, “Sometimes, a cigar is just a cigar.” So are Just So Stories, so delightful and so pleasant.