vnl on insee.me

Victor Nguyen-Long Photos & Videos on Instagram

@vnl  Creative Strategist trying to understand what the world needs and how I can contribute. Past life: Audi, Nike, 72andSunny, Red Bull Washington, DC

1 month ago

Today was my first time ever voting in a midterm election. Felt pretty good. I won’t take this right for granted again. Today, I voted for myself, my family, my friends, my community, and all the things I care most about. Unsurprisingly, I did not vote for any Republicans, but I also did not blindly vote for Democrats up and down my ballot for the sake of a party. I did my homework and I voted for who I believe will best represent my interests. Through this arduous process of trying to educate myself on the midterms process, voter rights issues, candidates, and measures, I was painfully reminded of how broken our system is — our “system” in general, but our electoral system in particular — for everyone, red, blue, or otherwise. It is unnecessarily difficult to register to vote, to find good information on candidates and measures, and to actually go vote — a right that should be among the easiest to exercise, but is constantly stifled by nefarious laws and policies that disproportionately impact a large part of our population. Regardless of tonight’s outcome, we must take a big step back and re-examine what civic engagement means to us today and completely rethink how we inspire action for a new generation of Yaras, Malalas, and Alexandrias — and how we take this unprecedented civic enthusiasm and channel it into real, sustainable change. Whatever it is, I know for sure it won’t be through a bunch of spam text messages and celebrities telling you to go vote — the cultural zeitgeist has dramatically changed, but we’ve been operating off a playbook built for a bygone era. Time for a new playbook. Who’s with us? #IAMVOTING

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1 month ago

The Midterm Elections are this Tuesday, November 6, 2018 and #IAMVOTING. As much as I hate to admit it, it will be the first midterm I’ve ever voted in. Statistically speaking, I’m in the majority. In 2014, only 37% of eligible voters and only 19% of 18-29 year olds voted. That means 63% of voters let the other 37% decide who represents 100% of us in government — the local and state representatives who decide on everything from potholes getting fixed on your street to access to affordable health insurance to how our neighborhoods are kept safe. I get it — it’s daunting AF. I didn’t know shit about politics until recently. I thought people smarter than me would make more informed decisions. But I realized only I knew what mattered most to me. This isn’t about parties, it’s about you, your families, your friends, and your communities and choosing representatives who will protect what you care most about. Just like people didn’t find the courage to protest or pick up the phone and call their Congressmen until they saw their friends do it, people won’t vote until they see those around them do it as well. So I got some friends together and decided we need a way to show that we’re showing up. So we created a simple Facebook profile pic frame that shows the world you intend to vote this Tuesday. Hit the link in my bio and add it to yours. And share why you’re voting. And hey — it’s OK if it’s your first time. It is for a lot of people. A few tips: 1. Check your registration status at vote.org before Tuesday. 2. Do some homework on who’s running and all the initiatives you can vote on. Honestly, finding this info is tough, but I used ballotready.org. Also, Google your local newspaper — they should have a good breakdown for you. 3. Look up your polling place and check the hours at vote.org. 4. If your state has early voting, avoid the lines! 5. If you have questions, ask a friend — they’re probably in the same boat. Or reach out to me and let’s figure it out together. Thank you to @peterhironaka @marcus_arman @reyerobles and @_chrxx for believing in this and for their help and hustle. More to come from us before Tuesday... stay up. 📷: @nickbrenglefilms

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2 months ago

I’m OK, but so many people are not—and that’s OK. More than 80% of us will develop a diagnosable mental illness at some point in our lifetimes. We are more likely to experience a bout of mental illness than we are to acquire diabetes, heart disease or any kind of cancer whatsoever. We must be able to talk about mental illness openly and free of stigma. In America especially, we use “How are you?” as a forgettable pleasantry—rarely are we genuinely interested in what the other person’s response is. And rarely do we share how we may be actually feeling. Next time you ask someone, “How are you,” let them know you actually mean it. Tell them you actually want to know how they’re feeling. Take a moment to actively listen. Don’t be afraid to assure them you genuinely care. And the next time someone asks you, “How are you,” don’t reflexively say, “I’m good” if you aren’t good. If you’re feeling sad, tell them you’re sad. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, tell them you’re overwhelmed. If you have a lot on your mind, say it. Showing your own vulnerability often gives others “permission” to also be vulnerable without judgment. Life is hard. There’s no instruction manual. And society has created pressure and stress we could never have imagined. Let’s practice radical empathy and stop “othering” people who may be dealing with something difficult. This #worldmentalhealthday (and every day), call or text message a friend that you think might be having a hard time and let them know #itsoknottobeok. If you ever have something you want to share or get off your chest, but don’t know who to turn to, I am here for you. Consider this an open invitation that never expires to talk about whatever it is you have on your mind—good, bad, or ugly. 🧢: @hopefortheday

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3 months ago

With @Nike ’s multi-billion dollar @NFL contract that runs through 2028 at stake, @Kaepernick7 isn’t the only one sacrificing everything. If only all brands were this brave. Thank you Nike for continuing to stand up for justice and equality. #blacklivesmatter

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5 months ago

In 2016, I was lucky enough to be in Paris to witness @equipedefrance play in the #Euro16 Championship Final against Portugal as the host country. Despite the loss, the city was electric and the celebration never stopped even for the sunrise the following day. Can’t even begin to imagine what the streets of Paris, Lyon, Marseilles, Nice, and Bordeaux will be like tonight. On July 14, 1789, a mob of a thousand anti-Monarchists stormed the Bastille in defiance of the tyrannical rule of King Louis XVI. It was a catalyst for the French Revolution that would later usher in a republican democracy. Like Independence Day on July 4th in America where we celebrate our freedom, the French celebrate Bastille Day (or La Fête nationale) on July 14th each year to commemorate this pivotal and liberating moment in their history. Today’s victory — only France’s second @fifaworldcup win — was delivered by a group of men, half of whom are of African descent and half of whom are Muslim, but all of whom, above all else, are French. I can’t think of a more poetic way to demonstrate the French virtues of “liberté, égalité, fraternité” (liberty, equality, fratenity) to the world. Amusez-vous bien ce soir, France. Allez les Bleus! 🇫🇷

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5 months ago

Today would have been @beccathorsen ’s 31st birthday. This photo was taken on this day three years ago in front of her favorite restaurant with some of her favorite people. Not a day goes by where I’m not reminded of her joie de vivre and effervescence; her penchant for details or how much intention with which she lived her life. In an IDGAF world, B always did. Her dedication to her family, faith, and friends was unrivaled and it extended to a number of philanthropic efforts, one of which was putting an end to human trafficking. In her honor, her sister @yesiamagypsy and family have carried her legacy forward by working with @A21 , a non-profit whose mission is to end modern day slavery. If you swipe left, you’ll see images of their new campaign #canyouseeme , created to build awareness for signs of human trafficking in everyday situations. You may see these images the next time you’re at @dulles_airport because sadly Virginia is one of the top 10 states with the most calls made to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline, the majority of which originate from Northern Virginia. It’s been reported that police have seen evidence of teen sex trafficking at every high school in Northern Virginia and even some middle schools. If this alarms you and this cause speaks to you, please consider making a donation to A21 (link in bio) to support their efforts to put an end to these atrocities and help carry on Becca’s legacy. #A21 #walkforfreedom #walkforfreedomdc #humantraffickingawareness #sextraffickingawareness #humantrafficking #sextrafficking #moderndayslavery

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6 months ago

Yesterday, my mother turned 82. Today, we celebrate #fathersday. I never talk about it, but my mother is an accomplished writer and poet (and artist!). She likes to share life lessons with me through long letters and poems she writes from time to time. Today she sent me a poem that I thought might resonate with a lot of you as you celebrate the fathers in your life, so I translated it from Vietnamese to English in hopes it inspires everyone to relentlessly prioritize family above all else. • A GIFT FOR MOTHER’S DAY AND FATHER’S DAY By Trương Anh Thụy • For Mother’s Day, don’t send flowers my child. For Father’s Day, don’t make a big feast. Your parents are old. There’s but so much we can eat. We only wish for one small gift. That’s the ring of the phone and the sight of your name. We catch up on life, like birds when they chirp. No need for a story, a topic, or reason at all. But it brings us such joy for the rest of the day. • The following day, as we crawl into bed, I hear your father ask with concern, “Did our child call today?” I console him and say, “Let’s lay down and think of the past… So we may plunge into a dream, where we were still in our youth… Back to the days when we ran after you and played.” • My dear child, The day has but twenty-four hours, that’s it! For how many hours did you sit… On the Internet, on Facebook, on your phone? To spend time talking to Jenny, to John… To track thousands of “friends,” over thousands of miles. Why not spare a few minutes just for your parents? Who sit alone and count time in a big empty home. • Your “friends” will live with you for many years to come. But your parents, who knows how long they might have! • Swipe ⬅️ to read the Vietnamese version.

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6 months ago

Leave it to an American to teach me to be proud of my Vietnamese heritage. When you grow up as a child of immigrants, you desperately want to assimilate to white people — well, at least I did. It all came from a place of insecurity about being different in America. Friends who came over rarely stayed for dinner, not because they weren’t welcome, but because I was afraid they'd think the food my family ate was weird. I could never imagine a day would come where I could take a date to Phở 75 the way I can enthusiastically do now. While I’ve always been in touch with my Vietnamese roots, I can’t say I grew up genuinely proud of them. That is until @anthonybourdain shined a light on my people’s food. There he was on the @travelchannel on TV, in my motherland, showing the western world the intricacies of a proper bánh mì sandwich (if it doesn’t have pâté, you played yourself). From what I saw, Anthony Bourdain approached his travel and work with a profound level of respect for the communities he was visiting, with genuine curiosity and a level of integrity that preserved the authenticity of each culture. When he chose Hanoi to break bread with @barackobama , he took him to the most local of joints, Bún Chả Hương Liên. There he was again on TV, sitting on tiny plastic stools, throwing back beers while eating a dish I’ve grown up eating my entire life, with the leader of the free world. Overnight, he became known in Vietnam as “Mr. Bún Chả.” The visit was so momentous that the restaurant encased the table and stools the two sat at, a memorial that will take on new meaning after today. His love for Vietnam was inspiring, saying, "Going to Vietnam the first time was life-changing.” Thank you, Tony, for opening the world’s eyes to the beauty of my culture and in the process teaching me how much there is to be proud of, being Vietnamese. On one visit he said, "For me, a good bowl of phở will always make me happy. Take me to that special place where everything is beautiful and nothing hurts.” Tony, I hope you’ve found your aluminum table, low plastic stool, and a bottomless bowl of phở and everything is beautiful and nothing hurts anymore. RIP Mr. Bún Chả.

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6 months ago

I took this photo during the final legs of @thespeedproject , the fourth iteration of a grueling, unsanctioned, no-rules 340-mile relay race from LA to Vegas — the insane brainchild of @nils_hh and @blue_benadum. It was 30-some hours into our adventure that started at 4:00am the day before, just as the leaders exited the blistering hot Mojave Desert and began their fast and furious descent into the city of Las Vegas. Throughout the night, @tracksmithrunning , pictured here, had been duking it out with the @sunchasers.tsp team from France for the lead, giving us the most exciting TSP competition we’ve ever seen. Leg after leg, they’d manage to steal the lead from one another. We’d later find out that @tracksmithrunning had been doing so with one man down through the night, leaving them with only five runners. My friend, their teammate, @bromka had succumbed to heat exhaustion during the first half of the race and was taken to the hospital where he thankfully recovered — here you can see him in the distance puking his brains out. At the very end, @sunchasers.tsp managed to pull away and go on to reach the Welcome to Las Vegas sign first with an unbelievable time of 35 hours and 49 minutes (avg. 6:19/mile... for 340 miles). @tracksmithrunning came in just 10 minutes later, both smashing the previous year’s record by more than 20 minutes. This might be my favorite photo I’ve ever taken and feel it perfectly captures the inspiring lengths to which runners will push themselves for this sport. If you’re in NYC Friday, June 15, join @tracksmithrunning for “Heaven or Las Vegas” at @Ludlow_Studios , a photo retrospective of this adventure featuring the photography of @emilymaye. The exhibit opens at 7:00am that morning and will be open for 35 hours and 49 minutes with a party at 6:00pm that evening. Hit the link in their bio to RSVP. Happy #globalrunningday ! #TSP4 #thespeedproject

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6 months ago

W A I T I N G by @kaws. @ween_11 for scale. • “KAWS is one of the most widely recognized artists of his generation and that expanded the definition of contemporary art through accessibility and an unprecedented abstraction of the language of contemporary culture. KAWS has created a visionary body of work over the last 20 years that has attracted brands, designers, galleries, young and old alike, and his openings across the world draw thousands of fans. • “WAITING features a figure know as COMPANION who has been part of KAWS’ vision since the early 90s when the artist first assimilated him into bus shelter advertisements and billboards around New York City. • “COMPANION is a nostalgic character in the process of growing up, and the figure’s relationship to its maker falls somewhere in the realm of avatar or inner child, often mirroring aspects of KAWS’ personality and journey through life. WAITING stands tall at 17 feet outside One Campus Martius and marks the first placement of this new design: a parent and child in a moment of pause, composed of over 2 tons of bronze with black patina finish. • “WAITING is a personal acquisition by Jennifer and Dan Gilbert for the Detroit Art Collection, which includes works on public display throughout @bedrockdetroit ’s portfolio and boasts works by and international artists alike.”

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6 months ago

Never leaving.

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7 months ago

Happy Mother’s Day to the woman who taught me to stand up for those who don’t have a voice. • In the wake of the Vietnam War, hundreds of thousands of refugees would flee Vietnam on boats to escape the Communist regime over the ensuing two decades. They would come to be known as “boat people.” An estimated 1/3 of boat people died at sea; those who didn’t often became victims of pirates and human rights abuses in refugee camps. In response, my mother, along with other academics, founded Boat People S.O.S., a non-profit that would dedicate itself to rescuing boat people out at sea, defending the civil and human rights of those refugee camps, preventing involuntary repatriation, and aiding in their settlement. • Here, my mother, Trương Anh Thụy, stands front and center in bright red with my grandmother sitting on the ground behind her in a head scarf. This was one of many protests during my childhood she would organize in Lafayette Park directly in front of @TheWhiteHouse to demand the Reagan administration help in this humanitarian crisis. • While I stood by her side at some of these protests growing up, I can’t say I’ve always been civically engaged let alone call myself an activist. But it’s clear it’s in my blood. • Thank you, mom, for inspiring me to use my voice to help others.

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8 months ago

#airmaxday is best spent with friends.

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8 months ago

Yesterday, I had the privilege of taking photos for @marchforourlives in DC. Of all the photos I took of this historic event, this one shook me to the core. I found myself tearing up as I spoke to @dymaris._ Butler, the 14-year old freshman at Wilde Lake High School in Columbia, MD holding this poignant sign. When I asked her what compelled her to join in this movement to end gun violence, she said, “Before this all started, I didn’t think kids had a voice. People always think we’re always lolligaging and don’t take anything seriously. But this shows that we can be serious. And I want to do my part.” • I think we can all learn from Dymaris and the hundreds of thousands that joined her yesterday. • Thank you @jburstofa for allowing me to take part in this moment in history. For allowing me to share the stories of these fearless young leaders. And for reinforcing my commitment to stand up, speak out, and fight for what I believe in and for those who can’t. #neveragain

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9 months ago

Beautiful night to see the cherry blossoms in DC. • When @bellvisuals isn’t protesting the administration, he makes some beautiful things too. • Peak Bloom by @bellvisuals for @thelinehotel. See it from 8-10pm Friday, March 16 and Saturday, March 17.

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9 months ago

Thank you for all the birthday love, friends. Sliding into my 39th journey around the sun like... • 📹: @musa

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