And on our Polynesian Day, we speak in different words but we feel the same way.

~”One Love, Our Love” – Sabyu ft. Chief Javi

More than just behind-the-scenes, this page takes a closer look at some of my community involvement and social justice work.

Memories from a UW First-Year

It’s been a long 10 months. During my first year at UW, I traveled over 1000 miles on public transit, spent 2500 hours in class, spent much more for studying, took at least 50 days to learn a 20-minute Samoan dance number, and served three quarters in Dream Project—not to mention encountered a countless number of new friends and smiles. Along the way, I reached many milestones that marked my growth into a full-blown college student. Here are some of the highlights.

Of State Farm and People of Color

He is an islander—bless his soul—and self-proclaimed businessman. That’s not all though—I’ll add a qualifier: “hard core.” See, from what I remember from his conversation, he didn’t exactly get off to a good start in his youth. Long story short, he eventually got in the business field, all because he was a “hustler.” I started to lose interest in this dude’s narrative, not because the dude is an owner of a small business, but because all his talk about “hustlin'” didn’t seem to me that he is who he is. Y’feel?

Stories from a Seattle Afatasi: Good Mana

Perhaps the most memorable night of my university career thus far was an ‘ava ceremony at an undisclosed spot somewhere in the middle of campus. Based on my own observations, there were good things, and there were things that could have really set this whole ceremony awry. As an adult, I can spare my mother the burden of listening to me explain why my group got visited twice by university cops that night. None of that stuff mattered to her: as long as it seems that I’m ‘making-good’ on getting that piece of paper, I had plenty of leeway in taking a risk or two.

Appointment Details – 5/17/1999 8:20 AM

This was something I recently discovered online while setting up an appointment at UW Hall Health Center. Prior to my adoption several years later, this is basically what landed me a trip to the doctor’s. Some of the details are intentionally omitted, obviously because it’s personally-identifying information.