Lester Liao
Lester is a physician in Toronto and a co-founder of Common Pursuits. He has written for CBC, National Post, the Globe and Mail, HuffPost, and his daughter's letter collection.
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Toronto
Encanto: The Miracle is You
Common Culture
Going beyond community expectations or individual-based achievement enables us to see differently, from a lens of merit to a lens of love. Love pierces through the veil of what we are for who we are.
8 min read
Soul: Doing What You Love Won't Save You
Common Culture
We must fit our passions under another overarching narrative that can bear the weight of our deepest desires. The artwork cannot stand alone; it needs a frame.
8 min read
Hercules: Finding Your Place
Common Culture
In a globalized, lonely world, we are all like Hercules. We all want to know where we belong. But is home in a place or a person?
8 min read
Nespresso Machine or Espresso Maker?
WALL-E: Looking Past Appearances
Common Culture
Herein are two approaches to life: technology as an end or technology as a means to the end.
6 min read
Aladdin: What's a Street Rat Worth?
Common Culture
What's a street rat worth, and what makes his life worthwhile?
7 min read
Second-Round Lockdown
Community & People
Toronto just went back into lockdown. It's frustrating. We are tired of this pandemic. But going into lockdown the second time is not the same.
3 min read
Ratatouille: Devoted to Delight
Common Culture
What is often called snobbery is potentially an ardent devotion to what is good, if only we have the will to see.
7 min read
Love Coffee — but not like that
Ideas & Culture
Coffee does much more than get us through the day (or night), but it can't be rushed.
4 min read
Mulan: Love Across Cultures
Common Culture
Some 20 years after Disney's animated Mulan release, my thoughts on the movie have changed.
9 min read
Learning from Used Books
Ideas & Culture
Used books, like the used and repair economies in general, call into question the value of production for production's sake.
3 min read
Music & Melancholy
Ideas & Culture
Music has a profound ability to shape our experience of the world.
3 min read
Finding Myself in the Stacks
Ideas & Culture
The shaping power of my little library goes beyond the suggestion to bury myself in Dostoevsky. The library is my life history collected across volumes; these are the ideas and stories that have formed me.
3 min read
Buildings, Rooms, and Anton Ego
Ideas & Culture
When you’re largely stuck indoors, even the building next door becomes special. And I see how this house blocks the sun, how it abuts the little walkway between our buildings that makes me feel cramped and unwelcome. No wonder I rarely step through here.
3 min read

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