Everyone’s a little bit racist…

…even against their own race.

Subconsciously, even.

Including me.

Last month, the Northeastern Vietnamese Student Association held a design contest. They wanted to print some custom hoodies. Photoshop-user as I am, I decided to enter with my own designs, which you can see here.

I entered my design and the VSA members voted on it. And I won! It was very exciting, until my dear roommate noticed something was a little off…

No, they couldn’t. As a result, I was asked to redesign the hoodie with the dog outside of the bowl. But when I did…

The VSA e-board decided to have its members vote again. This time, a different design was chosen– one that, in my opinion, is equally cool if not more cool!

But what about me? The winner of the design contest was promised a free hoodie. Except now, not only had I not won, I wouldn’t be able to get a hoodie of my own design. So the NUVSA e-board cut me a deal.

Was that okay? Hellz yeah it was okay! So I ran off and made another design, just for me.

I guess I didn’t learn my lesson.

If job interviews were graded, I would get an F minus.

So I’m trying to go on co-op next semester.

Or should I say, cooperative education. It’s when a school tries to integrate classroom learning with real-life work experience. Northeastern, which is built on the philosophy of “experiential education,” drives this point hard with its students. The majority of kids at NU get some sort of work experience while going here, whether it be an internship, volunteering, or, of course, the famous co-op.

In this context, co-op refers to a 6-month long time where a student doesn’t take classes and works full-time instead. There are a lot of variations of the co-op (like, 4-month co-ops, part-time co-ops where kids pick up a second job as well, etc.) I want the full shebang, though. 6 months. Full-time. Working in a company.

Last I checked, NU actually has the #1 Career Services in the nation. We’ve got lots of resources to help kids get jobs, not to mention a lot of connections to potential employers. However, this doesn’t mean that an NU kid will be handed a job on a silver platter.

Like with finding any job, we have to go through the whole process. Including:

That’s right. I’ve been interviewing. It’s been a, uh, terrifying process, to say the least. I mean, the only other time I’ve interviewed for a job was when I applied to McDonald’s. And that doesn’t even count as an interview.

So I went to my first real interviews last week. The company I was interviewing with happened to be a larger one, with several different departments. However, candidates were not told which branch they were interviewing with until the actual meeting itself. (The job description was just a very generalized “Research Assistant.”)  In other words, I went with really no knowledge of what exactly I was interviewing for.

Thus, I had an interview that looked like this.

This was off to a good start. And then it gets even better.

And to kick it off:

So I didn’t get that job.

(But never fear! I actually got hired for that company, under a different department. That guy seemed to like my rants about the importance of organization and how awesome research is. And I took the job. Coming in January: Vy is gainfully employed!)

So I walked into class this morning to find a little old lady posing naked on a table.

So I went to my 8AM art class this morning and had an unexpected surprise:

That’s right: Today, I woke up, went to class in a haze of sleepiness, and walked in to find this tiny old lady standing on a table in her birthday suit.

I mean, okay, I’m in college. I’m a girl. This is a drawing class, so I was expecting it eventually.

But man, combine sleep deprivation with unexpected nudity and you have one very confused Vy.

And I proceeded to sketch her for the next 3 hours.

(Still, I think we all got over it pretty fast.)

I get to meet another one of my heroes! (Chris Ware, author of Jimmy Corrigan)


Please excuse me– iTouch photos aren’t the best.

This is turning out to be the best year.

I mean, this spring, I actually met another one of my cartoonist heroes, Art Spiegelman. And I actually talked to him about how much I loved Chris Ware, another cartoonist. To prove this, let me cut-and-paste a bit out of that blog post (written way back in March) to here:

I’ve loved Chris Ware’s stuff for years now. In fact, one of the very first blog posts I’ve ever written was actually about his work. His comics are extraordinary. Lonely. Beautiful. Tormenting. When I first read one of his graphic novels, Jimmy Corrigan, the Smartest Kid on Earth, it haunted me for weeks.

How, then, did I get to meet this amazing cartoonist? I credit this one to my roommate.

I had to go. I HAD TO GO. THERE WAS NO NOT GOING TO THIS EVENT. So, last Saturday, I biked recklessly to the venue, an old church in Copley Square.

There was a long line, and the church filled up fast. Graphic novels are trendy, after all! There were four authors presenting this panel: Gabrielle Bell, Chip Kidd, Charles Burns, and, of course, Chris Ware. They all talked about their inspirations, most recent publications, and experiences in the world of “serious” comics. (Well, except for Gabrielle Bell, who instead read us two short stories she illustrated herself.)

Her story went a little like this.

Chris Ware went last. By the time we got around to him, he didn’t have much time to speak about much. However, he did give us a good 15 minutes of powerpoint slides and witticisms

I ended up purchasing his monstrously large new book, Building Storiesto get it signed. Let’s just say: I have never dropped that much money on comics, ever. But it was so worth it

Because I got his autograph. And a photo. And I got to talk to him!

If you did read my post about Art Spiegelman, you can see that I get starstruck pretty easily. It’s just a symptom of meeting the people I admire more than anyone else in the world. As a result, I got a little bit, uh, nervous. So I had a nervously awesome conversation:

Am I a cartoonist? I wasn’t sure how to answer that. I mean, I draw cartoons. I blog comics. But I’ve never really thought of myself as a cartoonist. Cartoonists are the ones who go publish books and cool webcomics and make money and go to art school and are famous. I am a biology student who is a nobody and is struggling in her basic drawing class.

I should just do it, huh? But, isn’t that easy for Chris Ware to say, successful cartoonist as he is? And I’m not a particularly talented person, bursting with creativity and ideas every minute.

And that’s how I met the amazingly brilliant and humble Chris Ware.