In the fall, I was featured on the popular blog, 8Asians (www.8asians.com). Among the interview questions, they asked: “What’s your personal motto?” I had never thought about that so I had none. But, I figured the closest thing to an answer is sharing my life philosophy – what guides who I am, the decisions I make, and how I interact with others. It was to live as truthfully as I can: to be transparent and honest with myself and others. We often create goals or resolutions at the start of the year and make big promises to ourselves. I never make resolutions. I hope to just be a better, wiser, more fulfilled, and courageous me each day. What more can we ask of ourselves? That alone takes a lifetime to fulfill – and I’m appreciating the journey. To me, there is no beginning of the year or end.

To kick off the New Year issue, we cover significant stories that loom like a shadow over the heart of the community. There’s the threat to the most vulnerable APIs in the state due to the governor’s proposed budget cuts. In part I of this two-part series, we uncover exactly who will be hit hard. The CenturyLink stadium’s north parking lot development is underway. Its design was unveiled in December. Since the massive commercial/residential development is located across the street from the Chinatown/International District, I wanted to know how it will affect the thousands of people who work, live and visit the C/ID.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. The Lunar New Year season is upon us! Your holidays are not over yet. In this issue, readers can enjoy our annual Northwest Guide to Lunar New Year 2012. We call it “Enter the Dragon.” The Guide features a history of the centuries-old celebration, a Q&A with children, asking: “Where do you think dragons come from?”, a dragon year astrological forecast, and famous dragons in history.

We also feature a piece on a young Filipino American man’s rare battle with gout and his use of medical marijuana to keep the pain at bay. And two special op-eds discuss where APIs will draw the line at derogatory roles in popular media, and what the legacy will be with the conclusion of the Iraq War.

We all wish you, our readers, a happy and blessed New Year. We hope we can all appreciate the journey we’re on – whether on a bumpy one or not. Actually, they’re all bumpy. But as I mentioned, in my opinion, there is no beginning of the year or end. So you have plenty of time to smooth things out.

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