This is a story on my time playing on Charles Windsor’s Windsor East Bay Chess Academy (WEBCA), the only competitive Black-founded chess club in Oakland at the time, and the lessons he taught me about what it takes to compete in spaces where not many people look like me or shared my background.
How do you do justice to a moment in your life when you found your Ikigai: when what you were talented at and what you could be paid to do collided with what you deeply love, and what the world truly needs?
I sometimes reflect on the consequences of growing up broke, the decisions that kids have to make to secure a future for their families, and the dreams and art they give up in doing so. I have met these kids and I know them because they are me in tech, film, or politics.
I initially approached this film with intense trepidation, bracing myself for potential jokes that would come at the expense of ridiculing Asian culture as opposed to celebrating it. I cannot count how many situations I have been in where I would cringe at various Asian American artists or performances depicting Asian Americans.
There is a day in the Munchery office that I will always hold dear in my heart: it was the moment when Conrad Chu, one of our cofounders, invited his parents to tour our office here in SF. I suddenly heard an exchange of Cantonese flying around as his parents marveled at the office shindigs and the efforts of what their son built.