I’m probably listening to the Hamilton soundtrack right now, or Slumdog Millionaire, for the 500th… 510th… time. If it’s very late in the night, I’ve got Nina Simone on repeat.
I care a lot about good design, especially applying psychology and behavioral economics to digital design.
I’m totally on that whole mindfulness wagon, I even lived in India and became a yoga teacher.
I often find myself precariously climbing up things.
A long time ago, in a galaxy far away… I got a B.S. in Informatics, a B.A. in Business Information Systems, and a certificate of International Studies in Business at the University of Washington in Seattle. I spent my sophomore year hopping European trains (going anywhere), buying cheap wine and expensive cheese, and studying French literature and history at Université de Nantes in Northwestern France.
I’ve worked for two huge corporations: Boeing and AT&T; two startups: Appature and Trakstar, and two consulting companies: Avanade and Slalom. In the spring of 2015, after working and doing User Experience Design for 10’ish years, I took a break.
In my travel, I’ve become highly interested in access to education, especially for girls and women.
I got to know more about my Vietnamese heritage, and inevitably, the Vietnam war. Being in South and Southeast Asia ignited a curiosity to learn about colonialism and feminism.
Traveling also awoke an old dormant interest: the design of cities and public transit.
Wherever you came from, and wherever you’re going, happy trails to you.
This is one of my favorite poems by the Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko.
by Yevgeny Yevtushenko, 1955
and idle too.
I have a goal
and yet I’m aimless.
I don’t, all of me, fit in;
shy and rude,
nasty and good-natured.
I love it,
when one thing follows another
and so much of everything is mixed in me:
from west to east,
from envy to delight.
I know, you’ll ask:
‘What about the overall goal? ‘
There’s tremendous value in this all!
I’m indispensable to you!
I’m heaped as high
as a truck with fresh-mown hay!
I fly through voices,
light and chirping,
and butterflies flutter in my eyes,
and hay pushes out of cracks.
I greet all movement! Ardor,
and eagerness, triumphant eagerness!
Frontiers are in my way.
It is embarrassing
for me not to know Buenos Aires and New York.
I want to walk at will
and talk with everyone,
even in broken English.
I want to ride
through Paris in the morning,
hanging on to a bus like a boy.
I want art to be
as diverse as myself;
and what if art be my torment
and harass me
on every side,
I am already by art besieged.
I’ve seen myself in every everything:
I feel kin to Yesenin
and Walt Whitman,
to Mussorgsky grasping the whole stage,
and Gauguin’s pure virgin line.
to use my skates in winter,
and, scribbling with a pen,
spend sleepless nights.
to defy an enemy to his face,
and bear a woman across a stream.
I bite into books, and carry firewood,
seek something vague,
and in the August heat I love to crunch
cool scarlet slices of watermelon.
I sing and drink,
giving no thought to death;
with arms outspread
I fall upon the grass,
and if, in this wide world, I come to die,
then it’s certain to be
from sheer joy that I live.
Translated by George Reavey (revised)