Hello folks! Kai here. Some of you may be familiar with my writings, ramblings, and riddlings — especially if you’re the type who prefers to chill on the other side of the tracks where levels of melanin and capsaicin seem to increase in tandem. By which I mean, communities of color and spicy foods are my comfort zones. I’ll be slummin’ it here for a couple weeks, though, crashing on the futon and rifling through the pantry. Let’s see what we can cook up.
When I started blogging in 2004, I didn’t really have a clear idea of what I was going to focus on. I knew I wanted to explore the craft of polemical writing from a subversive Asian American perspective, so I named my blog Zuky, an anglicized version of a word used in karate meaning “hand strike”. At first I started posting online the Iraq anti-war essays I’d been printing as colorful leaflets and plastering in train stations and bus stops in the middle of the night. However, it quickly became apparent that the so-called progressive blogosphere was plagued by a particularly foul, airborn strain of white liberal racism; so I started pointing my linguistic arrows in that direction, and ever since then my writings have been primarily associated with anti-racism and my blog has found a home amid a kind cluster of melanin-rich online offerings.
Last year, I also became one of the founders of a community blog called The Sanctuary, which focuses on immigration and which I’m proud to say received a 2009 National Ethnic Media Award from New America Media in the category of Best Blogger on Ethnic Perspectives. My friend and longtime blogmigo Nezua (who incidentally has also previously done a guest-blogging stint here at Feministe) flew to Atlanta to accept the award on behalf of our crew, and as you can see from the official photo of all the award-winners, one of these recipients is not like the others. Yep, the one wearing shorts and a Felix The Cat hoodie, sitting on the floor — that’s us.
Anyway, this is probably a good moment for me to thank Jill, Lauren, Holly, and the whole Feministe crew for extending the invitation for me to spill my unpredictably seasoned words on this platform. It’s a questionable move as I’m well-known to have a heavy hand on the Hunan heat, but I’ll do my best to balance the flavor profiles I bring to this table. I’m not going to bother rattling off a catalog of personal identifiers at this time because I’m an old-school believer that you will know me by my words and actions in real-time rather than the banners I fly in downtime. Be forewarned that issues of race and immigration will inevitably come up, and if these subjects confound you in any way, well, don’t worry; they’re not supposed to be easy. I’m a 38-year-old dude of color from an immigrant family and these subjects often continue to confound me. So I only ask that you approach my words and thought-forms with open hands, not clenched fists, and we can work on this tangled knot together.