Steal Like An Artist

“Achoo! Achoo! Achoo!”  Those were my involuntary, thunderous and embarrassing sneezes. A young lady, running towards me from the far corner of the bookstore, holding a box of tissues, said “tissue for you”, with a beautiful smile. I was very touched, “This is very nice of you. Thank you so much.” I took one piece, […]

The Creative Habit

I had a couple hours of gap at Stanford after touring the photonics and quantum computing labs, and before an evening programme on campus. Habitually I walked into the bookshop and found Twyla Tharp’s The Creative Habit. Reading the first couple of chapters was the best way to spend that time. There is always something […]

How to Win an Argument

How to Win an Argument – An Ancient Guide to the Art of Persuasion is by far the best book I have read on oratory. James May translated Cicero’s words into enlightening and pleasing writings. Thanks to May, the rhetorical wisdom of Cicero is comfortably accessible to us all. The rest lies in “师父领进门,修行靠个人”. The […]

Big Magic

When I picked up Big Magic – Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert, I was concerned that it might miserably disappoint me. A few writers unknowingly did that to me in the past. Usually the first book was fascinating, so I went on to read another one or two of their works. Sometimes they […]

Der Ring des Nibelungen

      San Francisco Opera offered a new production of Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen this summer. I went to the full cycle constituting four operas: Das Rheingold, Die Walküre, Siegfried,  and Götterdämmerung. As my first cycle, the whole experience was very intense and overwhelming. Compared with clips from other productions I saw […]