A Typical Vacation Day

6:00 AM: Woke up and read.

8:00 AM: Made Vietnamese ice coffee and hit the skatepark to rollerblade.

9:00 AM: Rollerbladed again on the boardwalk while the kids biked.

11:00 AM: Relaxed then had lunch.

2:00 PM: Hit the beach with the kids.

6:00 PM: Had dinner.

8:00 PM: Hit the arcades on the boardwalk.

10:00 PM: Played Monopoly with the kids.

12:00 AM: Went to bed.

LinkedIn Recommendation for Matthew Krishnan

Matthew Krishnan joined George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School as Backend Web Developer in February 2017 and quickly became an essential member of our team. With his technical knowledge, including PHP, MySQL, HTML, and CSS, he played an important role in maintaining and managing our content management systems: MODX and WordPress Multisite.

His skills in communication were even more impressive. He worked well with everyone around him in a professional manner. He went out of his way to support any law school member who needed web-related help. He even offered WordPress training to faculty, staff, and students who would like to update their own website content.

As someone who had been working closely with Matthew in the past four and a half years, I appreciated his patience, independence, and reliability. These qualities were so crucial in a remote environment; therefore, we were able to work in an effective, sufficient collaboration during the pandemic.

In addition to his work for the law school, Matthew studied tirelessly to earn his BS, with Magna Cum Laude, in information technology from George Mason University Volgenau School of Engineering. I admire his hard work and educational dedication. I have tremendous respect for him not only as a colleague but also as a friend.

Chuyện đau lòng

Một người Việt sống ở Mỹ không tin vào việc chích ngừa nên đã không cho cả gia đình chích. Vài tuần trước anh tổ chức một buổi tiệc hoành tráng mừng thọ 85 tuổi của cha mình. Hai ngày sau, cả gia đình bị nhiễm COVID và cha anh đã không qua khỏi.

Nghe thật đau lòng. Đáng lẽ ra chuyện của người ta tôi không muốn kể lại nhưng hy vọng đây là một bài học cho những người Việt trong cộng đồng chúng ta không tin vào khoa học. Đừng nghe tin bậy bạ trên YouTube, Facebook, hoặc mạng xã hội rồi cho rằng chích thuốc là việc chính trị. Đừng đem mạng sống của mình và người thân ra để đặt lên Cộng Hòa hay Dân Chủ vì con virus chẳng tha thứ cho ai cả.

Nếu bạn vẫn chưa chích ngừa, tôi mong bạn hãy suy nghĩ cho thật kỹ. Cả thế giới hiện nay đang cầu xin được mũi thuốc dành cho bạn. Đừng lãng phí nó vì nó cứu được mạng người và mạng của bạn. Dĩ nhiên chích hay không chích hoặc tin hay không tin vẫn là quyền cá nhân của bạn và sự chọn lựa của bạn.

The Poisonous Agent Orange

Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai writes in the New York Times:

It is long overdue that we highlight the costs of wars beyond injuries and casualties, to include the damage still inflicted on our health, our families and our environment. It is long overdue that comprehensive actions be taken to help all victims of Agent Orange, regardless of their nationalities.

Watch the slideshow, “Please Give Me,” I created to raise awareness of the victims of Agent Orange the U.S. has never acknowledged.

My Book was Mentioned on One of My Favorite Podcasts

I look forward to every Friday to listen to “The Weekly Typographic with Micah Rich and Olivia Kane.” Somehow I missed the section where Olivia mentioned Vietnamese Typography in episode 52. You can skip forward to 22:00 to hear Olivia talked briefly about the entire free book on Vietnamese typography. Thank you, Olivia for the shoutout.

Making Complicated Site Less Complex

Craig Mod writes in the Wire:

A lot of this server work involved making complicated sites less complex. That is: Making the dynamic static. Gutting these sites of their PHP cores, Benjamin Buttoning them back into sleepy HTML and CSS, making them low maintenance and future friendly. It’s funny how even something as simple as a MYSQL database requires pruning, nurture. How a PHP script—so seemingly innocuous!—is rendered obsolete a decade later as deprecation creeps, mental models of languages evolve. But take a page of HTML from the early ’90s, and it renders as well as ever on most anything with a screen.

I concur.

Vaccinated

I received my first dose of Pfizer vaccine this afternoon. The process took three minutes plus ten minutes to make sure I was safe to leave. Before the nurse jabbed me, she joked that my birthday present had arrived a bit early. I smiled back, but deep down I wanted to cry. I wanted to tell her that my mother had passed away 101 days ago because of COVID. When I went back to my car, I could not hold back my tears. I wept uncontrollably. I wish my mother was still around to get vaccinated.

Instead of heading straight back home, I drove to Krispy Kreme nearby to pick up my free donut. A Laotitian lady gave me two. Her name was Noi. She had her first vaccine yesterday. I brought two extra dozens for the kids and an iced coffee for me. Today was a beautiful day. I am thankful to be vaccinated.

Thanks to all the security guards for directing the flow. Thanks to all volunteers for checking us in. Thanks to the medical professionals for administering the vaccines. Thanks to the Biden administration for keeping the vaccine promise.

I hope my wife will get vaccinated soon.

Spiritless Airlines

A reader shared with me his recent experience with Spirit Airlines. Here’s what he wrote:

Is this the new way for Spirit to bump customers?

I had the worst experience flying (or not) with Spirit last weekend. We got involuntarily bumped from their flight without any compensation.

Our tickets were booked with the correct information directly via their website. We checked in online, received our boarding pass, all with the correct information matching our IDs. Once we got to the gate we were denied boarding because somehow we aren’t in the system. Gate agents said there is nothing they can do and told us to call reservation. We called reservation and was told that there is nothing they can do except to rebook the tickets for another $200. I politely declined their “generous offer.”

I didn’t make a scene however though I did promise them that if we don’t get on that plane with our boarding pass matching our IDs I’ll do everything within my power to let everyone else know about it.

I have never flown with Spirit Airlines and I won’t even consider it based on this reader’s horrendous experience. Spirit does not live up to its name.

Vaccine Scheduled

Yesterday my wife informed me that Fairfax County’s vaccine registration has opened for some frontline essential workers in phase 1c, which included faculty and staff at institutions of higher education. I immediately registered and scheduled on Thursday. My turn is finally here and I can’t get my first shot.

A New, Exciting Project Coming Next Week

Around this time last year, I designed an interactive webpage exposing the corruption inside 15 federal departments under Trump. That page led to a new project I am working on with talented artists and smart activists at the Mural Arts of Philadelphia. The new site will use creative illustration and thorough-researched information to reveal the hidden connections between COVID-19 and Climate Change. The site will launch next week. I am excited about it and can’t wait to share it with you. I hope you’ll read it, learn from it, and talk about it.

Watch this space.

Word of the Day