Wednesday, December 29, 2004

A Fool Of A Man, Or A Man Of A Fool?

Would you forgive a fool for being a fool?

Would you forgive a man oblivious to anything else other than what he sees, because he was caught in blinding light?

Would you forgive a man immeresed in fragrant water, for liking the smell of the fragrant water?

Would you, forgive, a man perceiving something as the truth, when all he ever gets from his perceptions is just that?

In other words, would you forgive a man with a handicap for walking limply?

I am so small in the world, humbled by its size, its greatness, and more by its complexity. What can seem so true in my eyes can be a lie in others. What can be false in my eyes, could be true to others. So back to the frequently visited question, what is this all?

It is not a question of how, what, why... but more of a question of what to learn from it. The universe yields so many mysteries, and perhaps also the answers, so the absolute truth can even be interpreted differently by different people.

It's like... I know where I'm going, but.. I don't know how to get there yet. I can see the lighthouse, but I don't know what route to take yet. Time will tell, as it always does, and also as always, I jump in anyway.

Let's get it on, and get it over with.

Final word, quoted from a friend: Looks can be deceiving.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Massive Disaster

Ok, I just have to day something about the earthquake and tsunamis that wreaked havok in many countries around the Indian Ocean.

My heartfelt prayers go out to all those affected, directly or indirectly.

I did not want to talk about it, I don't even read any news about it, avoid the TV newscasts, and avoid the subject when talking with friends... because I could break down and go into one of my sad states for days on end.

But, keeping it tough doesn't mean being ignorant (although most people do it that way)... so... let's all raise our hands in prayer for them. It's the least we could do. I think I'm going to head to the ATM later to donate some money. Money better spent there, rather than a book that I'd finish in two days, or a CD that I don't listen to that often, or some sort of unneeded electronic device.


Every day, you learn bit by bit, all about the world, all about yourself, and all about others. Well, not exactly all, but at least, the amount of knowledge you gain is pretty significant over time.

The apparent favorite subject of my inner self, is of course, myself. But always a skeptic, it was always the study of myself through other eyes, hardly ever my own.

So, the more people I know, the more I find out about myself also.

Today, I think I learned a lesson of the human shell.

Sunday, December 26, 2004


Saturday night, was the night of the song.

After spending 3 hours doing mundane work at Lokananta, and a nap because I felt so tired, the standing plan for about a week or so was that I and a couple of friends were going out to karaoke; singing capabilities present or not, we were looking forward to it.

So I booked a room enough for 8 people at Nav Fatmawati, and came early (as usual) as the booking of rooms there is pretty strict. Alfa came early, too, so we had the mikes to ourselves for about an hour, before everybody else came piling in: Asri with her boyfriend and little sister, Rama and Ines, and Vira.

Even though I can't sing very well, screaming, yodeling, yammering and strangling songs is often a good way to get stress out of the system, escpecially if there's a thing that reminds you of the lyrics (I never had a good memory for lyrics). Money, and time, well spent.

Later that night, not feeling it was time to go home yet, me, Alfa and Vira headed to Citos to hang out and talk, and we settled at a nice place called Dixie (Dixie is actually one of my favorite watering holes, with branches at KTS, Aston Hotel and Kemang). And suddenly it was 2 am already, so we went home...

Thanks for the great night, guys.


After spending 3 days in a row, that's Friday 1 hour, Saturday 3 hours, and Sunday a whopping 7 hours, at Lokananta, I finally wrapped up the bulk and the most important part of the activity reports.

Lokananta is a nice medium-size cafe near my house, with moderately-priced drinks and food (but worth every penny), and an all-you-can-use internet connection (they provide the LAN cables to go to your laptop, but no workstations provided, so you have to have a laptop) for Rp 10.000. Yeah, that's right. I used the internet yesterday there for 7 hours and only had to pay Rp. 10.000. But of course, I ordered drinks and food to go with it, which added to the total cost, but the place was cosy, the food was great, and the internet was refreshingly fast, so it was a better alternative than your usual cyber cafe.

When on Saturday I went there by myself, yesterday Alfa finally joined me to do a little browsing of her own... and I must say, we should of looked pretty cool (or geeky) with the small table we had already filled with our laptops and other geeky accessories (and of course, the pile of work I had to go through).

Now, all that remains is uploading the photos that go with the survey reports, but at least the core data is up, and I have couriered the hard copies of the reports to head office. You should see the stack, cost me a pretty penny to send it overseas, but hopefully, the payment will come through soon. Thank God that this kind of work only happens about every 3 months, for 2 weeks to a month. I'm not really looking forward to the next project, but will accept with open arms anyway. It's a good way to spread the cheer, so to speak.

Anyway, although some in my faith say doing this is a sin, I'm doing it anyway; to those of you who celebrate, Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 24, 2004

Something's Gotta Give

I finally finished watching Something's Gotta Give starring Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton. Nice story, unique perspectives and twists, and veeeerrryyy pretty Amanda Peet.

Basically makes you think that love is a journey, not a destination... and in fact, that's why love is so compelling, so important to human sanity, to human life.

[Yes, I'm finally bringing up a topic about love.]

Somehow, I keep writing stuff down, from the completely frank to the standard dubiousness... but I keep going back and erasing it. I'm not sure what I want to say, and what I do think I want to say, I'm not sure the good readers of this blog would understand it.

Love, in its most general meaning, which is between a man and a woman, has always been the more, um, interesting part of my life. Lots of stories here and there, although when compared to other people's stories it could me pretty mundane, but the stories are there just the same. Short stories, even paragraphs or sentences, which sometimes never need telling, and nobody knows about anyway (and no, I'm not about to change that now).

And.. let's just say, the journey has more often brought 'disappointment' rather than 'success'. I was never sure why, and I'm still not sure. Hence constant contemplation and thought on my side.... (aaah... now you get it).

And now... sometimes it feels like I always get myself in the same problem, the same mousetrap, all over again. I guess, I never learn from that mistake... all I do is just learn on how to handle it better.

That sounds pathetic, doesn't it? Sometimes I wish things could fit in simpler... although, I must say, my life is a waaay lot simpler than a couple of people i know.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Growing Pains

You know what, I came to a sort of revelation yesterday, that maybe a lot of people have come to realize anyway.

You never really grow up.

What happens is, you learn more, you adapt more, maybe you change, but in fact, you never really do change. At a certain point in life, you just stop growing, and start living. If at that point you have not reached a certain stage where the general convention in society defines as "mature", then, well... you will never reach it.

I don't think that many of us even reach what was intended by our predecessors as "mature". Maybe close, but never quite close.

Yes, with the years, you obtain more knowledge, gain more responsibility, grow more independent; but do you, really? Is that what defines a "grown-up"? Is that what defines "mature"? Well, let me put an open question to whoever may be reading this: do you feel mature? Well, do you, punk?

I guess we really do just gain wisdom over the years, ever more so if you learn everything the hard way (my preferred course of action, or else nothing would get into my thick head). But having volumes of wisdom and knowledge does not necessarily mean mature, right?

Try it out for yourself: using Google's Image Search, using the keyword "mature" brings a lot of porn to your screen. Now is that what the 21st century society defines as mature?

So, essentially, only a part of everybody grows up, and the rest remains intact, whether it be the little kid in kindergarten, the punk from high school, or the deprived college student. And both parts define who we are, how we think and take action, and what we aspire to be. And what we aspire to be has more to do with what our little selves inside want.

So keep the little kid in you happy, he or she will save your life someway, someday.

Short Visit

One of our partners invited my company to Bandung to attend a launch of their services there, and I was sent to represent the company. So very early in the morning, I prepped my stuff and went to the train station early, just in case the train was packed; I wanted to at least get a seat, not a standing ticket. The night before had ben very tiring, because I had all this stuff to carry around from the office, and arrangements to go to Bandung were only done at the last minute.

So off I went to Bandung with friends from another company, and arrived there at about 9 am. The event we were about to attend wasn't going to run until about 12 pm, so we just went to the location and hung out at one of the restaurants near the designated area.

The place was called Cihampelas Walk, or more popularly Ciwalk, a relatively new commercial area with a mall, dozens of eateries and cafes, and places you can walk around, or sit and chat. Pretty nice place, and it's open much later into the night than most places in Bandung, much to the pleasure of young couples in love or kids having the night out.

The event itself only started at about 3 pm, because of the rain, but it was pretty good. A few local artists sang their popular songs to the delight of fans and audience, and there was the share of games, door prizes and such.

After the show, I went over to Tanti's house, who had been sick in Bandung for about 2 weeks, to pick up something, and also lend her a book to wind away her recovery days. Later I met up with Pandji and Gamila for dinner... and apparently, I got carried away discussing anti-monopolism :P.

I crashed at Pandji's place, and took the 6 am train back to Jakarta this morning. So I have not reached home yet... when there is a lot of stuff I need to settle.... the project I'm doing has not finished the reporting stage...

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Random Thoughts (Reprise)

During the rather mundane routine of work today, I have had this urge to write something here other than my post below. Something more... of the mind, more transcendental... something more reflective. I'm still not sure of what, but I'll put it down anyway.... here goes...


Why does the word 'beauty' keep repeating itself in my head? But I can't make anything of it 'm not sure what I'm trying to say. I'm second-guessing myself on the subconcious level, so nothing really comes out.

Well, anyway. After the first round of uploads yesterday, I met up with an old friend, and we chatted over ice cream (ice cream that God must of created Himself, because it tasted like heaven!) about work, and the obligatory nostalgia. It's always good to reflect, not just the fun parts of nostalgia, but the more introspective part. I must say, the conversation was wholy entertaining, informative and at once good for the heart and mind. And the chocolate ice cream made it even better.

One of the points of the conversation was, you never really know how friends appreciate you, but you ultimately always know when friends are dissatisfied with you, even if they are talking about you behind your back. So, I'm trying to make it a point to show more appreciation to others, more than before, at least. It always feels good when you've made someone's day.

A few days before, a friend told me to smile more. At the moment, I was in a very bad mood, and if somebody comes along and tells you to smile, you just get more pissed off, right? Well, maybe it's right. More to smiling inside, rather than your average garden-variety plastic smile. Be more optimistic. Well... I'll try.

Ah.. here's the sentence that wanted to come out, finally...

Beauty emenates from the heart and the mind.

Okay, now what the hell is that supposed to mean? Isn't that something that ugly people say?

Hahahahah. Forgive my crudeness, because as usual, I'm writing everything that comes off the top of my head.

Now what?

Saturday, December 18, 2004


Today is supposed to be the deadline of my activity report submission. The problem is, the report from Bandung got strangely delayed in the mail, although my counterpart there already sent it Thursday; and the partner in Surabaya came dow with typhod fever to the point he had to be hospitalized, so the activities in Surabaya are delayed. Yogyakarta just wrapped up yesterday, and I don't know when she will send the papers to me. And here I am, in a freakin' cyber cafe, uploading all the data that I have before tomorrow.

The connection is damn slow as well. Takes a damn long time just to upload a freakin' photo.

The keyboard is shit, you have to press every key with extra power, or else the letters wont show up.

Friday, December 17, 2004


It has got to such a point that I have to squeeze in any moment I have to finish up the activity report due Sunday. I stole a couple of office hours (with the irritatingly slow computer and connection) to upload the reports, now I'm uploading while waiting for Sacha at her office.

Um... so, I better get back to work.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Rollin' With The Times

Aw, gawsh!

I just realized that my last post was this Monday!

There has been either so much to do or nothing significant to say the past few days, although I did keep track of my blog and others. There has been a ton of work at the office, and the project that I'm running on the side is nearing critical moments as well, because the deadline is this Sunday.

Monday evening, after work, I went to Sacha's office again, because she had some sort of problem with her PDA she described over the phone, and I had no idea on how to fix it by talking her through the phone... so I just went there. Maybe I should start charging by the hour for these things. Anyway, afterwards I chilled with Sacha and her office friends until about 1 am, since it was somebody's birthday.

Tuesday, was proposal-making day. Sent out a couple emails and proposals to prospective clients, and trying to pin down the technical side so that the user scenario would be feasible. Hopefully, some of the proposals would stick. After work, a friend asked to meet, needing to talk about break up, but didn't say much about it... so we just sat there eating pizza and talk about other stuff... and still, later in the night, had to meet up with some people regarding the project.

Wednesday, still project proposal day. Pinned down final specifics for a certain proposal, and distributed it internally for approval, so hopefully I can send it to the client today. Afterwards I went to Plaza Senayan with an office friend; she wanted to get a Christmas present, a doll, for her niece. And I was going hey, you don't have to lie, it's okay if the doll is actually for you, haha...

Somehow... I think I'm trading very carefully forward, because,... this is somehow new territory.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Dead In The Water

Since I came in this morning until very recently, the computer network at the office was down, specifically the uniquely elaborate internet connection. So all I could do was access my files on the local server and not much else. The thing is, most of my work depends heavily on communication via the Internet, so when that doesn't work, I can't do anything.

Good thing the files I needed for a morning meeting were on the local server, so I printed that up and went to the meeting with my boss, for a relatively very fruitful meeting. Back to the office after the meeting, nothing still could be done, so I went to lunch. After dawdling for at least half an hour, finally the computer network went back on-line, much to the relief of many (especially the IT manager, boy, did he have a bad day). The funny thing is, I was already planning to cut the day short when the network just popped back online... hahaha. I guess I really have to do some work today, as I was sort of feeling like lazing around instead. Oh well.

Back to work then...

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Out Of My League

Revisiting my past, replaying the days that have gone by, I have come to some sort of revelation to myself: I almost always go for something out of reach, out of my league.

Now, I've never thought of myself of such a person; logically, I always think that the best solution for anything is one with a feasible execution, something that can benefit the most people (including myself). Now, what happens when the problem or the goal potentially benefits (or causes loss) only to myself? Usually confusion ensues.

You know what I usually do, in hindsight? Do the thing that nobody expects me to do.

In high school, I played in a band, and was outwardly known to be one of the guys who stay at school after hours to play basketball or cards in some remote corner. Then I'd get my top marks in class. Or maybe the other way around, so to keep everybody guessing. I don't know why I do it.

Graduating high school, some people expected me to continue to a more science or technical course in college.... and I entered ITB's Design Department. Now that, my friend, was more to the fact that I had had enough with either the number crunching or social studies, and wanted to learn something that I wasn't really good at yet, that is drawing (I never was as good as my brother, who majored in architecture in university). Of course, also to learn something new. That itself is something out of my league, because I still can't draw properly by hand, although the good technology of the later 20th century provided me with tools to overcome it (if you don't know what it is, you're using one, right now). The good thing is Design is supposed to be about being a good planner, a good manager, rather than be a good artist. Even, a good marketer. Anyway...

Graduating from university with, I most humbly say, high marks and with a deep understanding of the concepts and theories around product design, and after at least 2 semesters serving as an assistant lecturer, everybody expected me to continue as a full-time lecturer there. I said to myself, I don't know why, "that's too easy". Easy, as in, so simple that the puzzle falls into place for me, and suddenly I could see far into my future. It's like the scene in The Matrix, before Neo is brought to meet Morpheus, he wants to get off the car. Trinity stops the car, opens the door, and shows him a vague street fading into the night. She says, "Do you really want to get off? You know where that road ends." Neo closes the door and goes on to meet Morpheus.

Now... I have the utmost respect for the profession of lecturer, but I couldn't see myself anytime soon in that position, with so much in the world I have to see first. So I declined the offer, and looked for an obscure job elsewhere, and finally landing in Jakarta in a job that even more people wouldn't of guessed I'd be in.

So again, I went against everybody's expectations, and decided for the bigger challenge of trying to find a job in the private sector.

During my 6 months employment in Bandung, mid 2002, a close friend once told me, she didn't think I'd be suited for Jakarta life, and at that point I tended to agree. I was very much in love with Bandung, and I could be set for life there, with all the friends, the connections, a house (my family's house is in Bandung, while my Dad's job was in Serpong, so I lived in Bandung by myself), a car, and basically a pretty good job. The problem was, the pay was not much, the job was pratically dead-end in my view, and, I got restless again, and the only place left to aim for was Jakarta. So after going through a couple of job applications, interviews, salary negotiations etc, I started my new job in Jakarta in January 2003. Nobody saw that coming, either...

Now I'm with the second company I've been with since coming to Jakarta, accepting an offer from my former boss at the old office. I'm not going to elaborate any details there, but that action itself, was somehting that nobody expected me to do. Something that at points I myself, thought I could not do for various reasons.

Now, it's not that I always intentionally go for the bigger challenges. I mean, if I'm playing any sort of computer game, I always pick the 'easy' level. Other than the fact that I suck big time with any sort of computer game, I never felt the need to try the 'bigger' challenge of going straight to 'expert' mode or something, which would sometimes reflect most of my decisions in real life. But then again, games for me are for entertainment, not challenging myself, so if I'm not entertained, I forget about it. Thus, I suck big time in playing games.

I always thought of it that I should stick to something that would be more beneficial in the long haul, rather than get a quick fix (thus I have never averted to drugs and such, as they never help out solving anything, but would just create more problems). I don't like problems, I don't like puzzles, I like everything just going smoothly. But if problems do arise, it's always better to look for a solution that would be beneficial in the long run as well.

So generally it's always been about making the harder decisions that would only be fruitful in the long run, rather than something that could be evident right now. Thus, the bigger challenge.

Now that I realize that I have always gone for the bigger challenge unbeknowingly... I'm like, "So THAT'S why I've been in so much pain! This is only beginning!"

Like I mentioned to someone yesterday, growing a wisdom tooth is painful enough, not to mention growing pains...

Here's the clinch: sometimes, even though I know without a doubt the outcome of something I pursue would end in utter pain, I still go through with it if deep inside I know it's the best thing to do for me, or it's the thing I really want to do.

So, I guess I better stop complaining about everything and start blaming myself for everything.

Hmm, no, that didn't sound right, did it? Better if I just slap myself in the face and say "SNAP OUT OF IT! YOU ASKED FOR IT ANYWAY!"

The conclusion: I am stubborn as such that I really need to learn everything the hard way. Better that than not learn at all, I guess...

Thursday, December 9, 2004


I don't know if this applies to any other city in the world, but most drivers in Jakarta, in many aspects, are mad. Mad as in mentally ill. Nutty as a fruitcake.

Before going further, let me define "driver" as "a person who controls an automobile on the public roads". So it applies to any car, motorcycle, bus, bajaj, and everything else with an engine and wheels cruising the metropolitan roads of Jakarta.

First of all, people are in such a hurry, and they really make big noises about it. This applies especially when somebody is cutting them off, or the movement of traffic stopped for a fraction of a second (even at traffic lights), and when they finally get released from traffic gridlock to more sparse roads. In the first two cases, a generous helping of honk and horn sounds fill the air, perhaps with occasional profanity here and there. The third case, it's usually the engines being revved up for maximum noise, either for high speed to get away from the gridlock... or just plain being noisy.

Another strange thing is that at a traffic light, the moment the light goes green, tens of horn sounds go off, usually behind the first few cars in the line. It's like that they think that the pure energy coming from their sounds can actually make the cars in front go faster. Same in the case of traffic jams, or momentary hold ups; people generally don't look around for what is causing it, they just honk their horn and hope the sheer power of the horn will make it go away. Press the horn longer, and get a louder horn, for better effect. All for the benefit of some unlucky pedestrian in the area, getting a free hearing test (and losing some at the same time).

In Jakarta, there are 2 monsters of the road: the public transport buses and the motorcycles. Before I go on, let me put in a disclaimer that the next sentences are not meant to offend anyone in particular, it is just a casual and general observation. But on the other hand, if you're offended, that may be because you're a culprit as well.

Man, these buses. They go about thinking they're as small as your usual sedan or minibus, and take even less caution when changing lanes. Also the case when stopping, I mean, there's only so much space on the road that a car or motorcycle can pass through, and buses usually stop a bit diagonally or even in the middle of the road to pick up passangers. The passangers are also to blame, I guess... and whenever there's an empty home stretch in front, these buses would not hesitate to speed through there, for the sake of trying to get more passangers. So there go those buses, as big as a house, down the street, at breakneck speed, and leaving souvenirs in the form of carbon monoxide in its wake.

And you'd think that buses in Jakarta have unlimited capacity, because, that's what the operators of these behemoths think. So don't be suprised, for those of you who have not been to Jakarta, to see buses packed to the brim with people of various shapes and sizes (with at least 2 pickpockets inside) and still calling people aboard, claiming that it is still 'empty'. This must be a general delusion, because it works every time.

You'd think that companies who do service for their buisness, who carry people all around everyday to get their money, would think about treating their clients better? Well, no sirreee, doesn't happen here. The buses cut their routes whenever they feel like it, transfer their passengers or simply yell at them to get off whenever they feel like it, and hardly ever respect the letter of the law (not that the law is being enforced effectively either).

Second monster, motorcycles. Motorcycles are like water, with the roads as their rivers. Any empty space on the road must be filled by a motorcylce, even overflowing to the pedestrian sidewalks, forcing those crazy people who still actually walk in this polluted metropolis (me included) having to step aside, or give up the pleasure of walking for the cursing of motorcycles. These motorcycles can't seem to see an empty space go unused, even if when the rules say it's supposed to be empty (like say, the empty space of an intersection). They just go their in droves. Sometimes it's like insect intelligence, the drivers do it without thinking, they just do it, because everybody else is doing it.

That's still the majority of motorcyles still abiding to the law, staying on the proper side of the road, wearing helmets (for everybody's sake, I must add) and just trying to survive on the road to get home soon. There's also motorcycles with no license plates, drivers with no helmets, no headlights or taillights, no muffler for maximum noise, either going down the wrong side of the road or taking up the wrong lane to get ahead of the traffic. And for what? If it's just to piss people off, it certainly worked on me.

To be fair, I have to say that sometimes life is so tough in Jakarta, that you do anything to survive. And these (mostly) men who drive these cars, tend to carry over their survival instincts, the same instincts that served our ancestors well in the wild, to their driving, in the midst of the urban jungle. All the frustrations, the pent-up anger, and the unfulfilled goals of men in life, are sort of played out on the road; somehow like "if they're gonna push me around in work, they're not going to push me around on the road. Yes, that means YOU!".

So... a lot of people are having problems, being depressed, and having a hell of a life. Well... I can respect that, but as mentioned before in this blog... all you need is a change of attitude.

[By the way, I got the image above from I think the picture is a bit old, though, at least 10 years old. That's the Bunderan HI area, if I'm not mistaken.]

[Update: since there was trouble with the former image, I changed the image to this one from That's Jalan Thamrin, in a more recent photo.]

Wednesday, December 8, 2004

Corporate Schmoozing

I spent half the day Wednesday in corporate meetings and such. At lunch time, there was a gathering of a couple of companies working together for a project, so it was lunch first, then a meeting. Of course, with all the usual corporate mingling and schmoozing involved.

Next, there was a launch of a local airline with an overseas partner, and since both me and my boss had previous ties to the company, we dropped by to say hello to everybody. Another set of schmoozing. All these bosses in suits, ties, or any other presumably neat attire. And there I was, with my denim jacket.

Tuesday, December 7, 2004

Random Moments

Tuesday, was relatively a big day.

One of the projects that I'm running finally got launched, with a couple of other partners; although the work is far from finished, the final haggling of business terms and legal stuff had ended, so now we can concentrate on what's more important, the commodities themselves. There was a bash of a party yesterday morning, with a few celebrities coming, big bosses all around, and the press. And some sushi.

Now, back to the tedious job of selecting content and uploading. I should be doing that today, but there's trouble with the web interface.

Along later that day, a close friend suddenly called me to ask, out of all things, if I had a draft of a resignation letter. Her current workplace, although relatively prominent and with a good position for her, apparently was too much; sometimes the management and those under you just don't click, and sometimes work like idiots, but most often that they just don't appreciate you enough. Anyhow... she had just had it, got fed up, and wanted to move on, since the project that was her baby was basically done (insert your own frustration story here). I told her to settle down, take deep breaths, and talk to me later tonight.

Later she called that she'd rather work it out of her system by excersizing, and that she couldn't say anything yet... so, I gave her time... and I'll call her up later to see how she is.

So later that night, I met up with Meong and her boyfriend, followed by Tanti and Asri, at Plaza Semanggi, and then we ate at Frankfurter, the place with the notorious burgers and hotdogs bigger than your average mouthful (not to mention the price!).

And I had reached home by 9.30 PM... and it was a bit strange, you know? I don't know why. Couldn't go right to sleep either.

This Will All Make Perfect Sense Someday

this will all make perfect sense someday

i'll be A-ok....

this will all make perfect sense someday

there’s got to be a reason for the rain

all my bills have all gotten paid

i saved the bad, i broke the bank

this could have been a slow song

a laundry list of all the wrongs

but at the end of the day

this is my beautiful disaster piece I’ve made

and it goes, and i quote, and i never would lie:

this will all make perfect sense someday

i'll be A-ok....

this will all make perfect sense someday

there’s got to be a reason for the rain

i don't understand the numbers

but my faith is in the math

and the odds are all this pain will even out in the end

and we'll look back and laugh

and to all the hearts i've broken

and the ones that once broke mine

i've got suspicions all will be forgive in time

all you gotta do is call them up and say:

this will all make perfect sense someday

i'll be A-ok....

this will all make perfect sense someday

there’s got to be a reason for the rain

and if it ever gets bad, i mean really bad

i'll move to Nova Scotia and forget the life i had

be up at nine each morning down by the shore

collecting things that fell off boats in storms

Okay, so i might never but it’s nice to know the options there

the options there...

this will all make perfect sense someday

i'll be A-ok....

this will all make perfect sense someday

there’s got to be a reason for the rain

a reason for the rain, a reason for the rain

the reason for the rain, for the rain

and it doesnt help that i keep biting my lip in the same place

[As sung by John Mayer. The song is empathic in a way.]

Monday, December 6, 2004

It Probably Was Just A Dream

Ever wake up with that strange feeling of uneasiness? That you're searching for something, that something hasn't been done?

I think a lot of people who work in fast-paced high-stress work enviroments get that feeling some time or other. There was one time, though, in my college years, there was one day that reeeallly felt that something's wrong, something's out of place, and the feeling just endured for the whole day. Somehow, this morning, there's the same feeling of uneasiness.

Must be a bad dream, because, I still remember. Before I woke up, the dream ended with me still in search of something, either digging in the ground, or looking in the skies above with my aircraft (er... don't ask. My dreams tend to get similar to reality, on the other hand, they sometimes get a bit SF. Haha.). Perhaps with that feeling of unfulfillment, even though it was just a dream, I woke up with a small frustration that the mission had not been finished.


Yesterday, everything was going n a bit of a slow but hectic pace, with things going last minute here and there, with nothing to do in the intermittent moments. Not to mention, the people who were supposed to meet me later that night at home for the project brief, didn't show up, only one did, at least, so I could settle the project with her.

I've been kind of frustrated with the way people just throw away my projects. First they say they want to do it, then they don't show up without the slightest bit of courtesy of mentioning so; it's happened to me 3 times already the past week, including yesterday. I don't want to be a nuisance and chase them around, since, in proper perspective, they have the obligation to tell me. I mean, they get the bulk of the money involved anyway. Ah, maybe I do have to call them up one by one again. Real waste of time. Personally, I don't want to give a project with money involved to those who cannot put the effort into it. At the least, to make the initial phone call to follow up after my first contact.

It's hard to find good help these days. Perhaps good help is a pipe dream as well...

Sunday, December 5, 2004

For Once In My Life

I don't know why I'm putting down these lyrics here, but the song has been playing in my head for a couple of days. If the song is supposed to refer to someone, I haven't the faintest idea who... but in general the song itself, specifically the version sung by Michael Buble, has some sort of uplifting spirit that goes right in line with my mood...

I have often been so depressed, sometimes it's hard for me to recognize a happy moment.

Well, anyway...

For Once In My Life Lyrics

For once in my life

I have someone who needs me

Someone I've needed so long

For once unafraid

I can go where life leads me

And somehow I know I'll be strong

For once I can touch

What my heart used to dream of

Long before I knew

Someone warm like you

Could make my dream come true

For once in my life

I won't let sorrow hurt me

Not like it's hurt me before

For once I've got someone

I know won't desert me

I'm not alone anymore

For once I can say

This is mine, you can't take it

As long as I've got love

I know I can make it

For once in my life

I've got someone who needs me


I think many people go through some point in life, some sort of phase in life, where everything is just flat. No happiness, no sadness, no nothing. Maybe because of the extreme highs and lows of the past days, once the sinus wave settles back to a more or less straight line, everything seems uncanilly irrelevant. Unfazed by anything that could happen, more of the fleeting moments of silence are observed by a blank state. Staring out, nothing in the head, nothing in the heart, nothing in the mind.

Somehow it's a bit of a blessing; nothing can stop me now.

Saturday, December 4, 2004

I Hate It When A Plan Doesn't Come Together

{The title is a partial quote of Hannibal Smith, the leader of The A-Team; he always says this at the end of most episodes: "I love it when a plan comes together."]

I had arranged so that today, Saturday, a day that most people use for leisure or sleeping in, for taking care of a long overdue project. So I printed the necessary documents (with my new printer, of course) and prepped the files necessary for briefing the people who were supposed to come by for the project. They should have come at about 11ish.

Only one showed up, and he only consitituted 1 project of the 2 projects I was supposed to handle. The other 2 people, who were supposed to do the bulk of the other project, didn't even bother to tell me if they were not coming. So I had to move on, since I had another errand at my old office.

Someone was supposed to pick up the photocopy machine at about 1 o'clock, so I was there by a few minutes to 1. I have to tell you, everytime I go there, to that empty, messy room with all the unused and unwanted hardware and leftover files... it just gets me depressed. Not to mention since they already shut down the electricity line, the room was as hot as hell. And there was no sign of the guy who was supposed to come by...

Chieq came over at about 2 pm, as she called earlier for lunch... so while we chatted in her thank-the-heavens air-conditioned car, the guy who was supposed to pick up the photocopy machine finally showed up at about 2.30... so I let them rock the boat themselves; I didn't want to worry about lifting the ten million ton machine from the 3rd floor down. Enough of that.

Since they only brought along 2 people, they gave up, so I left behind the key to the main door with the landlord, and went to lunch with Chieq.

Right now I am at the cybercafe at Ratu Plaza, online with my laptop, sending those stubbornly large emails... I figured, if I wanted to go here and get a comfortable spot, it would be better to go Saturday night as nobody would be there. Right now, I think that it's one part good thinking, in another part pathetic. Alone on Saturday night.

One last point: the latest album from U2, despite my disappointment with the first single, Vertigo, has promise in the song Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own, at least in my view. It sounds like one of their Joshua Tree era songs, with the same touches and everything... but with sufficient attention-catching slow riffs, but of course, in the right mood.


It's been a few days since my last post. Other than having a lot on my hands at the office, and no time to go online at home, somehow... there wasn't anything significant to say.

I most often say a lot if I am complaining about something, in some state of depression, have a lot on my mind (or hands)... but somehow, the past few days didn't warrant any expression on this blog. Believe me, it's not that the past few days weren't without their share of drama and suprises, but, being the narcisst self-centered person that I am, I tend to write more about myself and what's directly relevant to me, and leave everything else for other discussions. (See?)

Let's see...

December 1st, was officially the last day of a co-worker I had only known for about 2 months, but I have come to know and love; she was a ball to hang out with, in the moments we actually did get to hang out. That's the second person to leave since I joined the company. THe strange thing is, the first person was also great to hang out with; we could talk a lot about anything, work or unrelated.. but then she moved to another company. Other than that, the day was more marked with emails and such.... but dinner at Izzi PIzza with a couple of friends afterwards that really made my day.

December 2nd, my boss was back from HK, and something very important disappeared from my desk. Expensive thing. I thought i misplaced it at home, so I decided to search at home later before sounding any alarms. The boss asked me to join him at a meeting outside the office, and that basically took a lot of my day, with the rest of the day getting him up to speed on what I've been doing.Later, dinner and meeting up with Oettie, Yudha, Sacha and Sashie at Bakmi Jogja. Sacha gave us the story of her trip to Singapore.

December 3rd, another day filled with meetings until after lunch. With all these meetings, who has time to do actual work? haha. And on that day, I found out that yet another 2 of my office friends were resigning... one was a friend from college, and I figured he'd be leaving sooner or later, but the other was a veteran of 4 years, perhaps already dispassionate of her job... I don't even know how my boss took it, I don't think he saw it coming. Oh well.Later in the day, I went to Electronic City to buy a NEW printer! I finally need one for my room/home/office... so i bought a mid-end one, and at the same time hooked up with Nelly for dinner and the usual share of gossip and other stories. I went home pretty early that day, as I was pretty tired with everything going on.

I think that pretty much sums it up.

Wednesday, December 1, 2004


Premise 1: You never get what you want.

Premise 2: You never want what you get.

Somehow, although sometimes uncannilly real, the premises above seem very depressing. Let's work on those sentences.

Juxtaposition 1: What you get is what makes you civil, and you have to be grateful for it.

Juxtaposition 2: What you want is what makes you human, and you have to aspire for it.

That sounds much better.

Monday, November 29, 2004

Premature Review of Holden Caulfield

I'm reading Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger, and I've been reading it without end for the past 2 weeks or so... the characters and the storyline are just not compelling enough for me to finish reading it in one night. Usually, with any assortment of SF or thriller novels, I'd finish them in days.

At first, how Holden Caulfield, comments on his life and those around him, and how he views everything in life, was somehow that maybe most of us could identify with, going along through the story, I can't help but think that this kid has no clue about what life is really about. Why there is school. Why you should save money. Why you should generally be nice to people.

Maybe it's my age; if I read the book way in high school, maybe I would of identified with it more. I guess now my priorities, my ideals, have changed, have traversed to values that in many views may be called as 'mature'. The striking thing about Holden is he tends to do everything without even considering consequence. As in his vernacular, "That kills me".

Otherwise, the book is an interesting window to the vernacular of the era, a window of the cultural background and habits of those people. I still want to finish the book, although Holden is frustrating me by the minute, just to see if he wises up a bit somehow. No spoilers, please. And... this could take me another week or so.
One last thing... he refers to almost everybody over his age as "phonies". I'm familiar with the intent of the phrase... I just can't help wondering if I would also count in that category. Nobody wants to be a phony.

Sunday, November 28, 2004

Working Over The Weekend

Ok... work is eventually starting to overflow into the weekend. Well, most of the time, I do other stuff on weekends anyway. This time, I had to make a Flash presentation for a client, who wants to spread the program to about 250,000 clients, and the material submission deadline is Monday. Damn. There goes the weekend.

There were supposed to be 2 weddings of my high school friends on Saturday, in Bogor, no less (about 60 km from Jakarta), so if I went, it would of been a whole day affair. So with utter regret I scrapped that plan, and had to stay home until I could finish the project. Mom and Dad had to stop by anyway, because they had a wedding in Jakarta to go to after Dad's lectures, and it would of been a waste of time to go from Serpong, Jakarta, Serpong, then back again.... so Mom hung out at my place while Dad went to campus, and I gave her a dose of Monsters Inc. on the laptop while I worked on the Mac.

When at about 6 pm, Mom and Dad were ready to go to the wedding, I felt I had sufficiently finished enough to leave it for a couple of hours, and I needed to get out. Coki and Tanti had been smsing me anyway about later plans, so I went with Tanti to Plaza Semanggi, to give her the IKEA thing she wanted (a CD rack), grab a bite, and browsing at QB World, before we joined Coki and a couple of others at Hotel Mahakam. Eventually, I only got home at about 12.30, and went straight to bed so I could start early the next day.

I spent almost all of Sunday at home, finishing up the Flash presentation, and at about 5 pm went to Ratu Plaza to plug in my laptop at the cyber cafe there. Unfortunately, I did not manage to send the 5 emails that I really needed to send because of the slow connection; I only managed to post the previous blog posts and a bit of browsing and chatting.

The good thing is I managed to finish the Flash presentation in good time, with certain limitations to the program and graphics, of course, because I did not see making more advanced graphics possible considering the time limit.

Somehow, there's a 'feel good' spirit hanging in the air.

Occasional Disconnection

Sometimes I hate it when I'm home. A large part of my life has a big dependence on the ability to go online, to be able to browse the internet, to chat with friends who I'd otherwise never meet, to post something on my blog... maybe the occasional dose of porn... but at home, hardly any of those points could be done.

I mean, it is possible to connect to the internet at home with either of my cellphones, but the signal strength and the data speed have become increasingly unreliable...

So again, I have to look for another solution. Not just for my addiction, but also for some work stuff I can only do over the internet.

With the internet... even if I'm alone in my room, I'm never actually alone... so when the occasional disconnection happens... it's a real drawback.

Damn, I really am addicted to the internet. Oh well. I can live with that.

I Left My Heart In Petaling Jaya

Petaling Jaya is an area about 10 km from Kuala Lumpur, with a pretty hilly landscape, but relatively developed, with high-rise buildings dotting the landscape, but not as closely packed as central Kuala Lumpur. This area is where my company’s office in KL resides, and also where the hotel that I stayed at, the Eastin Hotel.

It’s a pretty decent hotel, nice facilities and all, and since I was booked into the executive rooms, there was complementary use of broadband internet and swimming pool (well, I only got to use the internet, as it is my primary food group). But then I realized, after passing through Central KL, there’s the upscale Westin Hotel.. urm, as opposed to the Eastin hotel. Well, names aside, it got me thinking twice about the hotel. Well, anyway, the hotel was good, the staff were nice, although they couldn’t exchange rupiah to ringgit, forcing me to spend the first 2 days with only about RM 180 in my wallet (that’s about USD 47 or Rp 400.000).

I did not manage to reach the hotel until well into Tuesday night, however, because I was stuck in meetings then a late dinner. I checked in, went to my room, and attempted to connect to the internet, while sorting out my stuff. I only managed to log on close to midnight, as there was a verification page first before logging on to the hotel network, and that page took ages to load. So after a bath and change, and watching useless TV, I made my last post, before turning in.

I started our early the next day to catch up on my emails, before going down for the complimentary breakfast. I stayed at the hotel with my associate from HK, so we had breakfast together. The funny thing is, I came to KL with some of my better shirts, and also my unique homemade suit denim jacket (Mommy dearest made it a couple of years back).. and this guy from HK, who technically is my boss, and I assumed to be older… looked like a kid (not that I don’t look like a kid) and wore t-shirts to the office. This always happens to me. When I started my previous job, I always wore these ultra-neat shirts, occasionally with a tie, when everybody else was wearing standard day-to-day clothing like t-shirts, jeans, sneakers etc. It just never felt right going to the office without at least some degree of neatness, so I always go to the office with casual shirts. And there goes my boss in his t-shirt.

Anyway, Wednesday was also filled with meetings here and there, punctuated with lunch at a restaurant called Madame Kwan’s, in an upscale area called Bansar. The food was pretty good, some tasting relatively familiar, as most Malaysian food is similar to some traditional Sumatra food in Indonesia. The thing that surprised me was if in Indonesia, girls would eat only half a portion of rice and be satisfied, in KL they’d eat 1.5 times the amount and never think it was too much; another thing is that KL folk (like Singaporeans), if they have had enough to eat, they would leave any leftovers just like that, without any qualms of unfinished food. Compare to Jakarta, where virtually everybody finishes their meal, the portions are smaller, and food going to waste is generally frowned upon.

After going back to the office, and having good chats with everybody, I went back to the hotel, as I had a 6.30 appointment for dinner with a couple of other friends, people I knew from previous projects, but never had the chance to meet. They took me out to a Mediterranean restaurant still in the Petaling Jaya area; the food was fabulous! Except for the liver pate. Ugh, I hate liver. The rest of the food was great, especially dessert…

Afterwards, they took me for a drive around KL, so I could sightsee and take the tourist-standard photo of the KLCC (also known as the Petronas Towers). I’ll spare you most of my pictures in KL, just this one would suffice as representative.

The next morning, I got up early, finished some work due to be sent to the Jakarta office, and finally went to the one place I had been wanting to go to since I arrived: IKEA!

It’s not that I am a big IKEA fan, but I always find they have well-designed products at relatively cheap prices, so off I went… and browsed there for about 2 hours, before I finally got together a couple of things to buy, either for myself or some friends back home. Unfortunately, I did not manage to take any pictures.

The bummer of the trip back to the hotel was, it was really hard looking for a taxi, and all you could do was wait around in a designated taxi zone… I tried walking to the main road and getting a cab there, but it didn’t look like standard procedure there, and I didn’t want to get into trouble or anything for getting a cab. Finally I got a cab, almost missing my check-out time at the hotel, so after some quick packing, I checked out and headed straight for the airport for another appointment.

I have to tell you, KLIA (Kuala Lumpur International Airport) is one of the best airports I’ve been in, design-wise and function wise. But well, I haven’t been in to many other airports anyway…

Anyway, I had another meeting with someone who works at KLIA, and we chatted on work and anything else till it was time for me to board…

I have to say, everything that the Lebaran holiday didn’t give me, I think I got during this supposed work trip… feeling much more refreshed, I have a lot of ideas to expand the business I’m in charge of… and, I guess I can’t complain about the opportunity that I had going overseas, which a lot of people do not have.

Now, you know what I’m thinking? KL is a nice place to live.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Sudden Trip

I had to stay late at the office yesterday, until 9 PM, as there was a layout that I had to supervise and distribute to the other partners on that exact day, as promised... because, the next day, which is today, I had a sudden business trip to Kuala Lumpur.

Originally it was planned for Wednesday, but suddenly, Monday morning, they bumped it up to Tuesday; the original plan itself I only knew last Friday. So I had to quickly finish my work for the week, as the journey got extended to 3 days, Tuesday to Thursday, packed with meetings, discussions and such.

In the midst of a near-panic on not being ready, leaving work behind, and so on, I still had time for a late-night discussion with a trusted friend. A much needed discussion, and a well-timed one as well.

I needed to borrow a small suitcase for the journey, as mine was still in Serpong, but I couldn't manage to find someone who could lend to me in such short notice. Actually, there was someone, but I don't think it would be appropriate given recent conditions...

Anyway... after not succeeding looking for a money changer in the morning, I finally had to convert some money into ringgit at the airport (at a rip-off rate, I might add) before finally departing to KL.

Often when I go alone to strange new places, I always wished that I could share the experience with someone... share those fleeting moments looking out the window on the plane, those moments of slight confusion when you lose your way in the airport or in the strange city itself...

I'll have more on Kuala Lumpur later, when I get the chance to take more pictures.

Monday, November 22, 2004

The Coin

The seemingly endless and exhilirating sensation called human experience; the actual physical sensations, the emotions, and the psychological adventures; all the virtues of our mind and body. The strange train on the railroad that never plots a straight course, but always seems to go somewhere, always has purpose.. God forbid the train to seemingly stop, or seem to go without direction. Also, the human experience seems to introduce us to two entities of constant conflict, neither of them having a name, or rather, named differently by different people.

My entire life has always tended to be based on bipolarity, two extremes always at odds with each other. Everything broken down into two extremly different solutions, everything diluted into two inherently different aspects of view. Such is the coin, the multi-faceted one, if you will, not just consisting of two sides, but always seemingly so for a human.

The dualism of the human mind must be something very intrinsic, very instinctive to us, since whenever we can, we try to process the information that comes into our minds from the universe into two discreetly seperate pools, at least seemingly seperate, when in fact the contents of those pools always trade with one another. It has a lot to do with the symmetry of man, the subconcious drive to divide everything into two parts, and not necessarily with physical objects, but metaphysical as well. Those two parts must have some sort of opposition; right and left, good and bad, God and Satan, black and white, yin and yang, happy and sad; and with equal opposition of forces, a state of balance is achieved. Thus being human, is a constant struggle between two opposing forces to attain balance. Issac Newton couldn't of said it better.

Thus, sadness, or happiness, are just two sides of a coin... depends what side you are looking at. The actual concepts themselves are abstract at the least, of course, because it would depend on how you see the matter at hand. Success, failure is an illusion, is only a concrete concept of events differing in point of view, differing only, at the flip of a coin. Emotions, however real, or vague, are illusions, because they are the product, not the process. Emotions can also be a process, but as with everything else, it can all be different, at the flip of a coin.

The nature of the human psyche always strives to strike a balance of basically two opposing forces, depending on the person. The conflicts are usually chosen by us, either conciously or subconciously, the 'actors' of such conflicts, and the matters of opposition, all illusions created by us to attain a state of balance.

Alas, balance must be the true illusion.

Have you ever tossed a coin, and see it land on its side, rather than one face or the other? It's virtually impossible. Almost always, one side faces you, the other shuns you. That is real, that is not the illusion. But then, what you can do to change your reality is, flip the coin again.

Then what would the purpose of the inherent instinct to achieve balance in humans be? It sometimes feels sad that we all are victims of our own illusions, but then again, flip the coin, we should be glad that we are the victims or our own illusions. Better that then become slave to other people's illusions, or having no illusion whatsoever. Our goal in life is to chase the illusion, to maintain the illusion... but as they say, living is not a result, it's a process. Who cares if you reach balance or not. That's not the point.

Lives can change just like that, at a flip of a coin. Attitudes can change, perspectives altered, insights revelated to other insights. At the flip of a coin. Failure can be Success, with the same terms, with the same conditions, only differing from what the eye of the mind sees. Happiness and Sadness, Pain and Joy, are just more of the same thing. Opposition is the illusion.

Thus everything is virtual, everything is a non-entity, nothing is real. Everything is in your head, in your heart, and in your gut, everything you just know is real and true, is your own figment of your imagination. On the other hand, everything is real and true, but you live in your own illusion, convincing yourself that nothing is real. Always two sides. Always, two opposing forces. And, again, always, humans will try to find common ground, neutral ground, the middle path. So the two poles exist to define the middle path, yet the middle path also defines the two poles.

So everything is nothing. Nothing is everything. Only one thing remains real; your mind, and the analogy of your mind, and heart, as a coin. Your mind is and illusion of dependency as well, when everything is defined by our subconcious. Thus, only the subconcious is real, what else is there, before getting into utterly metaphysical discourse?

I know what's real. I know that the mind that writes these words is real. I know, that the heart beating inside my chest, although I have never seen it, is real. I know, the sensations, the feelings I feel, are real. I am human for what I believe to be real, whether it be an illusion or not. What actually is real, for humans, is irrelevant, because we live on so much planes of existence we never realize it.

Illusion or not, I always keep a coin in my pocket to remind me. Life is what you make of it.

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Random Thoughts on Sunday Night

Some say, you never get what you want. Well, sometimes, you never want what you get, either. Talk about human nature, never satisified with what they already have. Vanity at its best. Thus, vanity may well be my undoing.

Every step of my life, I've always tried to do everything based on what I think is right, what I think is the correct course of action. (Once again, with emphasis. I do a lot of that too.) What happens when you don't know what's right anymore? What do you do when the reasons are all gone? What do you do, when you know nothing anymore?

This blog may well be on to becoming a place of my exaggerated fears, wants and worries... just look what I've been writing the past few weeks. Ah, who cares. Read it or leave it.

It always helps when you know that everybody else has their own problems. Or not.

Pain came by this afternoon. Joy was nowhere to be found... I'll look for her tomorrow. At least, somebody's keeping me company. That and a dozen of useless DVDs.

I watched It's All About Love, starring Joaquin Phoenix and Claire Danes. Rather morbid and dystopic, set in the year 2021. Cheered me up a bit, because it practically said the whole world is going to hell anyway. In the context of the movie, the whole world wass turning to ice, as in another Ice Age. Everybody dies. Some fly. Well, wouldn't want to ruin the story for you, although you'd get the drift as you watch (actually, from the first 5 minutes). Still a compelling story. Watch it... it might cheer you up as well. If what they say in the movie really happens in 2021, well, forget about all the money you'd have piled up by then, would be meaningless.

Dystopia is in. The whole world is on a Prozac binge (well, at least where they have it sold). I remember everytime I was in a bad mood, I'd just pick up one of those news magazines, and I'd feel better right away. There are a lot of people having worse of a time than I am; like in the US... four more years. Well, you asked for it anyway. Let's see where that gets you. Anyway, I just bought the latest edition of The Economist, after a straight run of strictly fiction for a couple of weeks.

Fiction is my escape from reality. Movies are my escape from reality. Hmmm... get the drift? Got any other bright ideas? But that's easy, and fleeting. Reality's not so bad I guess. They're making more TV out of it lately. Maybe many people feel their lives are so fake, they need a prod of reality coming from the place that usually spouts fantasy and fiction. It's either that, or the human race has truly run out of original ideas. Or money. Oklah. I just have to pinch myself to stay awake, or I'll sleep forever.

Justice for all, they say. We'll just have to wait and see. But I guess, everybody feels that justice is going the wrong way on the street. You know what I think about that? Justice is overrated.

I just noticed, I always have a crush on these strong-jawed females... like, Diane Kruger, Sharon Stone, Jessica Alba, Jennifer Garner... Sophia Latjuba. Haha.

Hey, are there any chili afociandos out there? I am too. You know why I like it? Well, other than the taste, it's the sensation. Drowns out everything else because it's so damn hot. (FYI, I never could elicit such a sensation from alcohol... not to mention the taste! I hate Bitter!) Drowns everything out... another escape from reality? What's with all this escaping?

I think everyone takes an escape from reality, at least once in a while. When they're doing their hobbies, taking a dip, going to a club for drinks or dancing, browsing the internet... What's wrong with reality? Are our lives so routine, so tiring, so boring and so ... so... BAD that we have to escape from it? Ever wonder what the people did in the Middle Ages? Stare at the sheep, I guess. Or the rice paddies. Well, nowadays, especially in the cities, they're making all this money, just to save up and get away from it all. Pointless, right? Or maybe buy something useless. Let's just save money and stare at sheep. But then, what do you do with the money? Buy sheep I guess.

I can't help feeling utterly weird and stupid. For good reason, I guess. For both points, with no explanation I guess. But I hate it when they say I'm unique; I know it and it's one thing I wouldn't like to be reminded about.

Trying to uphold pride, honor, and dignity is a very male thing. Maybe because... we lose it so easily all the time.

Ah, let's stop. I could write well into the morning. I've got work to do.

Once the waves subside, once the rainclouds go away, usually a sunny day awaits. I'm waiting for the sun to come up, but in the meantime, somebody lend me an umbrella. Mine's broken.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Back To Reality

After spending a week at my parent's house, and hardly logging any time on the internet (one reason is because the signal strength for my mobile is very weak). I finally returned to my place at Dharmawangsa. Return to Jakarta, return to reality, and shortly, return to the demands of work and life in Jakarta.

So Friday, morning, Mom and Dad dropped me off at my place, because there was a ton of stuff I carried to and back from Serpong; among them, I finally brought along my beloved acoustic bass guitar. And then there's the assortment of clothes and food, hallmark of the Idul Fitri holidays.

Not long after, I prepped to leave again, for Friday prayers, and after, meeting an old friend that I haven't seen for more than 6 months. Yeah, I know, the past weeks have been filled with a lot of 'meeting up with old friends'... I guess at times like this, I need to be reminded of who I am, what I stand for, and who better to do it than old friends; because friends that I meet everyday would not recognize the constant flux going through my head.

There is one reality that has hit me squarely in the jaw, and to quote from another blog: "the true lesson of love, is to let go."

Another fact that hit me again is... as most readers of this blog might know... I'm not like a lot of other men.

Another thing good about meeting old friends, is that you know that they actually want to see you, and make the effort... not just use you or take advantage. (Hey. let's not jump to conclusions. You know how I play with words).

I just pray that this will get easier somehow, because I just know there will be a tough week ahead...

Renewed Wisdom, Of Old

Not to sound cliche, ungrateful or condescending or anything, but I've come upon some sort of resolution or discovery. There are two companions that have always been with me from the beginning, loyally staying at my side through the strange journey called life.

One is called Pain/Suffering.

The other is called Joy/Happiness.

Both of them have always been around, although, through some sort of arrangement, taking turns in accompanying me. Depending on how I look at it at a certain point in time, one tends to invest more time than the other.

Both have always been there, as undeniably reliable companions, and all this time I have taken them for granted. I should, at least, give them the credit of my true, lifelong friends, if I ever knew such a thing.

Here's the strange thing: even they have somehow disappeared, or appear unconcerened, lately. I'm sure they're busy, as with namesakes like them, they should be accompanying everybody in the world, with varying degrees.

I think they forgot about me. It's that, or I'm becoming as deranged as ever...

Monday, November 15, 2004

Idul Fitri, and the Aftermath

Idul Fitri is the day celebrated by Muslim people to mark the end of the Ramadhan fasting season, to symbolize our victory over our humane drives, and, accordingly, to open a new leaf of life, as we are born anew. We forgive each other for the mistakes of past, and hope the cleansing of the body and mind, that supposedly took place during Ramadhan, would make us out into better people.

I have to say, the fasting season for me, this month, was depressingly meaningless. Most people think that during the fasting month, you should get more religious insight, or do much more contemplation on yourself... well, that can happen if you're not trying to hold up your job all month, and for that matter, trying to hold up your life.

Too many days went by only waiting for logging off time, too many weeks yearning for the weekends to come, and thus I forgot to look for the meaning and wisdom that supposedly Ramadhan would give me. On the other hand, if I say that the season went by uneventful, and not gaining any new insight on anything, that would be a lie.

Here are the insights gathered:

A person once very close to me said, and often said, I might add, that I tend to be very ungrateful for what I have. I think I have to change that. I think I have to be grateful that I can go online with this laptop through a CSD connection on my handphone, connected by Bluetooth, because not many people can use their phone for bluetooth, not to mention browsing (or blogging!) with the laptop connected wirelessly to it. I think I have to be grateful that I am sitting at my parent's house, both in relative good health and spirits, in an air-conditioned room in a city that some people swear has more than one sun. I think I have to be grateful that I have clothes on my back, food to eat, a roof over my head (at more places than one, I might add), and money to spend for unnecessary stuff like hair gel or um, gadgets. Touche. I think I have to be grateful I have family, although most of them I only meet a few times a year. I think I have to be grateful that I have friends, good friends, and even enemies (God forbid, but well, we all have our share), even if I tend to be a pain in the ass at most times and a nuisance at others. I think I have to be grateful for this nation I live in, because, despite it being always precariously on the edge at times, it's... still here, with hope of a better future. Most importantly, I have to be grateful that I, myself, am in relatively good health physically (mentally? I'm not so sure... haha), have a brain that people tell me is smart (well... sometimes), and have a good job and position at the office. Also, last but not least, I don't know why, but I'm grateful that I have the capacity to love all those who are important, or maybe even not that important, to me, never mind the fact that sometimes it's misunderstood or taken for granted.

Another thing about occasions like this, you tend to contemplate (yeah... only 2 days to contemplate, when you're supposed to use the whole month for it) what and who is the most important to you, to whom to you feel the most gratitude, to whom do you feel the most love, to whom do you feel the most affection, and all that mushy stuff. At the times where everybody tends to send mass SMSs to each other with a general greeting, I spent the most of the first day of Idul Fitri writing up personal messages to those who are important, and replying personal messages to those who did send me and SMS greeting, personal or not. I felt that I had enough of those SMS blast greetings, because they tend to be very impersonal; and the recipient would treat them as such anyway. I spent time making long, personalized messages to those who are really important to me, because even though the recipient may not realize it, I felt that the extra effort I put into it marked my sincerity.

The one thing that I did feel missing this Idul Fitri, was that there was usually someone special I called, to ask for forgiveness, among other things... this time... it just feels different.

And of course, the regret, the guilt, sometimes tend to wash over you. But it wasn't particularly anomalous, because I tend to feel guilty about everything every time... so, Idul Fitri, breaking from tradition, had become a reminder that I'm not responsible for the world, I'm not responsible for everyone I love (although I do my darnest to be), I'm just responsible for my own actions (or inactions). This Idul Fitri has more become a reminder of; stop worrying, start living!

I wish it were that simple.

Sometimes, holidays can get kind of lonely. Good thing books by dead guys can keep my mind busy, to keep it from thinking so much in that area.

So, just to sum up the activities of Idul Fitri: first day we gathered with my Dad's family, the second day, with my Mom's family. That should be enough information. Oh yeah, it involved a lot of eating, and the occasional relative asking what grade I was in. Yeah, still happens.

I just wish...

Before Idul Fitri...

By golly, it's been a few days since I've posted. Erm.. excuse the 'by golly' phrase, must of stuck to my brain from all the books I've been reading since the start of the holiday.

On Friday, after finishing what I could at the office, the office was already empty by 4 pm anyway, so I went home early because there was a lot of stuff I had to bring home. A loooot of stuff. Not counting the assortment of gadgets that found their way to my office one by one, there's also my bag of CDs (with about 40 CDs in it, but who's counting?), an assortment of groceries I got from a parcel sent to me... and... well, my ever-heavy bag. It was a long trip standing in the bus, mind you.

I met up with Nelly later in the evening for dinner, and her boyfriend dropped us off at Izzi Pizza, the one at Mahakam. Now before I continue my story, those of you who have been following my blog may ask, I tend to get together with a lot of girls with boyfriends don't I? That must be because I'm such a good friend, a trustworthy friend. I guess. It's that, or I am soooo ugly men in general wouldn't even think of growing jealous. I'll leave it at that for now...

Soooooo later, I went home walking, since Mahakam is near where I live; and my original appointment that night with Sacha had not been confirmed, only later that night Sacha called to say she was done, and we met up at Dim Sum Kemang... there, a lot of her co-workers piled together there, and eventually we shared a table and talked until about 2 am, sahur time, anyway.

The next morning, I got up at about 9 am, despite serious sleep deprivation, to get a proper haircut, because it was time, and traditionally you cut your hair and get some new clothes for Idul Fitri (I bought a new pair of trousers the night before), and my parents were going to pick me up at about 12 pm.

I planned to stay the entire week there, so I brought sooo much stuff, Mom thought I was going abroad or something. Well, sometimes Serpong is in another time zone, considering how long it takes to get there on your usual workday, haha...

So, after arriving at Serpong with a quick stop at Pondok Indah Mall for some groceries, I slept the last day of fasting away. Bliss...

Thursday, November 11, 2004

One Day Till The Holidays!

Ok, today's the last day of office before the Lebaran holidays. I predict a relatively empty office, with a lot of people going home early, or not doing much of anything. I still have to submit some late files to a production centre, but once I get the CD writer working, I can get those files burned on a CD and I'm on my way.

There's actually also the matter of a proposal I have to put together, which is supposed to be discussed by the consortium the first day after the holidays (as usual, it's up to me to get it running). I'll put that one together in the afternoon, I guess, after delivering the CD... but that means going home at the usual time. That's ok, not that I have somewhere else to be anyway.

Yesterday, after a meeting at Indosat, I got dropped off at Telkomsel to get my new HP number! It's necessary, because by the looks of it, most of my office's services will be running on Telkomsel first. But it hasn't been activated yet, because I had to fill out some forms and give them back after the holidays. Anyway, afterwards, I saw that I had some spare time before getting back to the office, Vira's office was nearby, and I promised to return some DVDs to her before the holidays. So I went there, gave her the DVDs, and got a trade of J.D. Salinger's Catcher In The Rye (yeah, I know, but I haven't read it! I wanted to know what all the fuss was about). Once the trade was done, I intended to go back to the office, and I waited for a taxi outside Vira's office... for over half an hour, approaching fast break time. I gave up, and had fast break with Vira at Spice Kitchen nearby (erm.. not recommended) before moving on to the next appointment.

I met up with an old friend, one that I have been chatting with a lot through YM, but hardly ever in person, so we both finally decided to get together last night, and, continue chatting, haha. Before heading home we went to Duta Suara, and on a whim I bought a 3 CD set of Frank Sinatra, in my opinion worth every penny...

I am always amazed on the speed of how things go up and down for me; no wonder people call me very 'moody'. But I must say, it was all necessary, and the speed actually helps to get everything resolved faster, so I can move on to other issues. That always has to happen, moving on. Can't stay in one place for long. So, the past few days have provided me with a lot of perspective and insight to all that's around me; what's important, who's important and in what way, and why, overall, I should be happy with what I've got. The number one human weakness I have is ungratefulness, and I intend to change that...

So, a week of holidays with my parents, a few books, food, and a lot of sleeping should do me well. At least, hopefully, that's what would happen.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

It's Lame Quiz Time Again!

Got this off Vira's blog. Gave it a try... and uncannily, we both have the same results for both quizzes. Either that, or the quiz is so lame, there are only so many outcomes.

Here it is anyway.

Take the What Fruit Are You? test by Ellen!

Your Icecream Flavour is...

Cookies 'n Cream!
Smooth and creamy with a few rough bits mixed in, you are a real treat! You are probably very popular amongst your friends. Remember too much of a good thing is not always good! Don't lay it on too thick!
Ok, very insightful. Well, anyway, this sort of gives you the picture that my workload has subsided a bit, so i could do something as unimportant as this on my blog. Go ahead, try out the quiz! And get the earth-shattering results posted on your own blog.