Monday, January 31, 2005

The Things I'd Do For Watching Jennifer Garner

I'm a fan of Jennifer Garner. Really. Well, I have this thing for tough chicks with still strong feminine sides, and she fits the bill perfectly; at least, her character in the series Alias. Another favorite is Jessica Alba, of series Dark Angel fame, but that's another story.

I usually stay up till late every Sunday night to watch Alias on TV (it runs on cable as well, but I don't have cable at my place and all I ever watch on TV is... Alias). The show only starts at about 12 pm (until about last week, where it just simply disappeared), but I wait for it nevertheless, going through an oldies song show hosted by Bob Tutupoly and one of those martial arts series that I never can tell one from the other. Here's where I usually catch up on my reading.


Yesterday, after work I went to see Elektra.

After watching.... well... it's a comic-book adaptation, and tended to have a strong comic-book cultish feel to it. I liked it, but I'm not sure other people will. Then again, I liked it because Jennifer Garner was in it. The story was, um, simple, the action sequences were cool, but I think if anybody's thinking "franchise", the movie is a dead duck. Well, they did a worse job with Catwoman. Elektra still comes off as a must-see for comic lovers.

Friday, January 28, 2005

The Ghost In The Other Room

First of all, I like the mornings.

The mornings are usually devoid of her, and for at least an hour I'm by myself, enjoying my music, and sitting there. Waiting for her.

I like the way that the door kind of announces her arrival; how the fingerprint machine ultimately refuses to read her thumbprint, and always protests. I hear the protestation. Then I hear when the finger machine gives up and lets her in.

I like the way she never does anything with her hair until she arrives, and after passing by me and saying a small hello with her nose and a small wave, she hurries into her room and starts her ritual.

I like the way she spends at least half an hour with her hair, doing whatever it is she does, and it always comes out great. Usually women are worried that people see them when their hair is half-done, but she never minds me knocking and coming in to chat while she does her ritual. I like that too.

After that, I like how she checks her make up to the mirror than could never be placed right, forcing the user to bend over a bit to get a closer look.

I like how I tease her ritual by just smiling at the door, and she always says "well, you know me."

If I don't tease her, I like how she calls me on the intercom (when she can actually yell) to ask if I have had breakfast or not. And I like going to breakfast with her. I wait until 10 o'clock to have breakfast with her, because that's usually when the ritual finishes.

I like how she's never fussy of what to eat, so usually I can choose what I want; although most of the time I'm also indecisive of what to eat anyway.

I like how her room smells after she has put on her cologne, which frankly can sometimes be smelled from just outside the door as well.

I like how we always try to go to lunch together, and always tell each other if either of us is going out for lunch elsewhere.

I'm not much of a talkative person, so I like to listen to her talk about anything, even though sometimes I think it could be bullshit or wishful thinking.

I like how she talks, and how it always grabs your attention, even though it could be something boring, or just plainly talking about herself.

I like how she shares such unecessarily intimate things, like how successful or how long her latest toilet visit was.

I like it when we walk together, she always walks close to me and sometimes our hands brush together, and how she always walks as fast as I do and never asking me to slow down; to the point that if we chat while we talk she sometimes loses her breath, then I slow down.

I like how we make-believe any single topic of discussion, expanding the possible stories from the mundane to the ridiculous. Any small topic will do.

I like it how she's usually hungry in the afternoon, so we go for a quick snack break to the store below. Well, not only in the afternoon, for that matter.

I like it when she seems so helpless with her computer, and always asking me to come to aid.

I like the fact that she's gadget-concious, but sometimes not knowing of the more specific information, which she always ask me. Always. And I like how she sometimes envies my gadgets.

I also like daydreaming with her of what we'll do when we're rich, what we'll buy, what we'd be doing to get that rich, and what we do with all that money.

I like it how from the moment I knew her, she has always talked about some scheme on how to make a profitable business or simply make money, that it was at first irritating, and now adorable.

I like it that although she seems like a well-to-do person, she values hard work and the value of money itself (maybe thus her love of it).

I like it that apparently money isn't really everything to her, that apparently there are more things that are important. She just doesn't show it much.

I like it at the end of the day, we usually try to go home together on the bus, if not going somewhere for dinner and window shopping.

I like it when she sends an sms at an unexpected hour about something insignificant. Then I reply something insignificant as well.

If there's one thing I don't like... I don't like that I don't know how long it will last.

[PS to readers: think what you want.]

Tuesday, January 25, 2005


Hi, my name is Barijoe, and I am an addict.

To many things, that is; I am such an addict to technology some people call me a technosexual (a person who derives pleasure from getting the latest and most state-of-the-art in technology).

I am an acute addict to sambal, chili sauce, Tabasco and the like.

I am right now eating chocolate, another one of my uncured addictions.

Of course, there's my addiction to the internet, including surfing, email, chatting, peer-to-peer downloading, blogging... and of course, pornography. Ha ha.

I am addicted to music, to the point I seriously considered purchasing an MP3 player, I specially bought Altec Lansing speakers with subwoofer for my Mac, and the hours I spend in a CD store.

I have one more addiction, one I think is truly bad for me sometimes: an addiction to a person. At least, spending time with that person.

Now how do I weasel myself out of this one?

Shuffling Priorities

Since my post about gadgets, apparently the hype surrounding the Ipod Shuffle has raised somewhat, inducing me to make a special post about it.

Now, here's my take on the latest jazz of the fazz:

the Ipod Shuffle, coming in 2 different memory sizes, 512 MB and 1 GB, is decidedly a good product with a comparatively good price. We've seen many flash-based MP3 players in the market, and when the largest size they come in so far is 256 MB with about a Rp 2 million price tag, the 1 GB Ipod Shuffle comes in at about Rp 1.7 million. So for under-1-GB MP3 players, you get value for money, and perhaps, if important to you, the prestige of owning an Apple product (apparently).

This product makes accessible a product once only belonging to those who could afford it, since the cheapest Ipod, the Ipod mini, still comes at a price of around Rp 2.4 million; a pretty hefty price for something not necessarily a daily need. So those longing for an Apple product, perhaps even specifically an Ipod, can get their own affordable version (with prices comparable to a mid to low-end cellphone). And due to the distinctively different design, and even marketing approach, those already owning a larger-sized Ipod would not lose prestige; I think even they would buy a second Ipod in the form of the Ipod Shuffle for just the fun of it.

So Apple has finally released products for the budget-concious, but not letting go of style and prestige, in which Apple has put in huge efforts in building since the advent of iMac.

Now, the downturn is, as mentioned above, you can get a 4 GB Ipod for double the price of a 512 MB Ipod, and even a 20 GB Ipod for triple the price. See? For those who don't understand the technology behind these MP3 players, the math doesn't add up. The Ipod Shuffle, and other similar-sized MP3 players use flash-based memory, which is typically a computer chip. Every time you want to increase the memory size, you have to double the miniaturization and thus almost double the cost; hence, if you notice, flash-based memory always comes in factors of 2 (16,32,64,128,256,512 and the 1 GB Ipod Shuffle should be acutally 1028 MB). The larger Ipods use more or less the same technology as computer harddisks, hence the capability for storage space up to 60 GB in the latest Ipod Photo. It just costs a bit more expensive than your usual computer harddisk, even a harddisk for a laptop, because it's even smaller than standard harddisks, and you also have to consider the hardware and software for running the Ipod itself (notice that it took a while for other electronic vendors to make a harddisk-based MP3 player).

So, if you just want an MP3 player, and you're not too worried about storage space, get the Ipod Shuffle. You get value for money. But if you need the extra space, forget about it and save up for at least a 20 GB Ipod. Both have the same functions; it's all a matter of storage and budget.

You choose;... for now, I'm putting my lust for the Shuffle on hold, as I already have a flash disk, and an MP3 player on my P900. We'll see lah...

Sunday, January 23, 2005

What Planet Are You From?

This is from a quiz i tried out a while back, but didn't have time to upload to the blog...

You Are From Neptune

You are dreamy and mystical, with a natural psychic ability.

You love music, poetry, dance, and (most of all) the open sea.

Your soul is filled with possibilities, and your heart overflows with compassion.

You can be in a room full of friendly people and feel all alone.

If you don't get carried away with one idea, your spiritual nature will see you through anything.

Um.... I don't even know what to comment on this one. Just try it out.

Off To The Battleground!

Today, I got together with my former high school friends and went to a place called Brigade 3234 in the Gunung Putri area, West Java. What is this place? It's a battleground. A battleground for paintball games; and we sure had a lot of fun!

After a briefing on how to use the weapons, basic rules of the game and so on, and divided us into 2 teams, we were given uniforms, masks, helmets, and our weapons... and off to the battleground we went! The first session was 'take the enemy's flag'; and after a brief strategy session, our team effectively took the enemy flag with the home base safe from attack. The second session, there was no flag-taking, just basic kill-em-all, with anybody with the paintmarks having to get out of the game. I took a hit early, and got out of the arena, but apparently there was no paintmark, so I went back in, unfortunately for an early demise as well. Oh well, so much for playing soldier.

After that, some of us went for a swim at the pool in the complex, and then we all ate sate kambing at Sentul, before heading home. I crashed by Yadi's place, as my friends dropped me off near his house, and quickly dozed off before tagging along him and a roomate for some dinner. I didn't eat, as I had so much sate kambing.

I must say, the paintball game was really fun, and I'd love to do it again sometime. All in all, I had a pretty refreshing weekend. Tomorrow, back to the boredom... or hecticness.


After spending Idul Adha with my parents, I hitched a ride back to my place Saturday noon, and not 5 minutes upon arriving, I put everything down and went to Vira's place, because I had to transfer some old data from my Palm Desktop program to my Outlook program, and I had to use her PDA to do that. Her PDA, which is still technically mine :D.

So yes, over the process of the last 2 weeks, I sold my trusty Palm m515 to Vira, and finally got a second-hand Sony Ericsson P900. Why second-hand, do you ask? I got a good deal, the condition was still good, and I got a bonus of 2 memory cards and the card reader. These things have been very useful so far; in fact, the photos on the previous post about my trip to Bali were taken by the P900. To top things up, my ancient digital camera, which is cumbersome to carry around practically... has the same picture resolution as my new phone. So... perhaps, once I get the CF card reader from Sacha, which she has been borrowing for some time, I am going to give the camera to my parents (which should be easier for them to use, as Dad now has a computer running Windows XP). Which brings us back to the main story.

So afterwards, I had lunch with Vira, then went to Sacha's place, as we planned to go to Ambassador Mall, a mall filled with stores selling virtually everything, and with 2 floors with lots of electronics and handphone stores. As you might gather, a favorite place for me. Sacha wanted to upgrade her phone firmware, but as it took a while, we had a few hours to wander around. So, we thought it would be best if she started to ask around about memory card prices, for use with her PDA, a palmOne Zire 72 (one of my favorites). Eventually, she bought a 256 MB SD card with the card reader, so she could use the memory card both as external memory for her PDA (for listening to MP3s, for instance) and a USB flash drive; thus making her use of the CF card and card reader she borrowed from me useless, and returnable to the owner. Afterwards, her phone was ready with the new firmware, and then we went to her office so I could see what was wrong with her Palm Desktop program (which I fixed in about 5 minutes).

I'm pretty happy and satisfied with my phone, albeit that I seem to have some trouble transferring the Palm Desktop data to Outlook, with the issue unresolved until now. I still have some backup data on the Mac, as the data on the laptop seems to have disappeared, but I'll deal with that later. I can always grab the data from the office computer anyway. Otherwise, it's a good phone, with all the uses I need, and I just need a to work out a few quirks.

Vira is getting along fine with her PDA, which I have already given to her awaiting payment, as I wanted to detach my dependence on it, and Sacha is entering deeper into the world of gadgets. I'll be teaching Bluetooth uses soon to Vira. Looks like the PDA, or gadgets in general, has become more popular and acceptable in today's world, whereas when I first used a PDA, a Palm m100, in 2001, hardly anybody knew about PDAs, and tended to be a 'geekish' or 'male' trend or interest.

Now.... I'm setting my sights on a simple Ipod Shuffle.

Friday, January 21, 2005

A Furlough To Paradise (Or Something Like It), Part 2

It's been a really crazy 2 weeks, and I have not been able to update my blog; now it's a long weekend, and finally I have time to breathe... so here it is:

I went to Bali for a business matter, a partner company launching a product, and so me and a couple of other friends from other companies were also there. As the event was only on Friday afternoon, we had the whole Friday night and Saturday to go around Bali, sightseeing and shopping (not that I bought much).

A much-needed break from routine.

Sunday, January 16, 2005

A Furlough To Paradise (Or Something Like It), Part 1

It's been almost a week since my last post. Earlier in my blogging days (which was only about 3 months ago), that would have been strange. Now, work at the office is really picking up speed, especially last week, where I had to chase a lot of stuff to the finish, and didn't have time for updating my blog; and I was too tired when I finally got home to post something from home. You see, it's not that I'm spending tons of time at the office, but last week was filled with a lot of get-togethers and the sort, leaving me with hardly any time to update the blog.

Now that I'm feeling the usual "holiday lag" or "Monday laziness syndrome", I thought I might as well post something to clean up the information overload in my brain.

So, last week, everything was a little bit more hectic than usual because I had to finish everything by Thursday. Because, on Friday, I had to go to Bali! Finally, a chance to go to the so-called "Island of Paradise" or "Island Of The Gods". And what a fun trip it was...

More on the trip later, maybe later today or tomorrow morning.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Breaking Promises

I broke a long-standing promise last week. I promised something to someone, which in the end I gave to someone else. The decision was more based on practical purposes, as the second person involved needed the object in dispute more. But still, the first party was pretty pissed, as the first party wanted it more than mere practical values.

I guess that makes me a bad person.

But you know what I think? It's about time I did something bad. Trying to be a good person all the time tires the heart. Because you can never make everybody happy.

Friday, January 7, 2005

Hold That Thought

I feel weird.

I don't think I've ever had to go through what I have gone through today, and the day is not over yet, apparently. I am not sure what it is, but judging from what I feel, what I think, and the sensations going through me, I'm pretty sure I've never felt this before.

What is it? I can't even begin to try to break donw the components, to try to analyze what's going on.

In some ways, as human nature tends to do, I hate it, because I do not recognize it. In some other ways, I like it, because it's like a drug you've never tried before, and you're getting the first pang of kicks.

This post must be really surreal and ambiguous. Because I really don't know what I'm writing about myself.

Thursday, January 6, 2005

Being Helplessly Stubborn

You know the saying, "I'm surrounded with fools!". Usually that's what the baddies say in some B-class action flick or cartoons.

You know what I say? "I'm surrounded by stubborn people!".

Well, I'm one of those stubborn people myself, but for once, this post is not about me.

A lot of my friends are very successful in their careers, which is due to diligence, persistence and a share of stubborness. I don't think any of us got where we are now without that.

The downside of this is stubborn folk tend not to listen to others, even when those people have their best interests at heart. I again must also admit that I also have this affliction, thus supposedly I cannot make an objective opinion about this subject. Who cares. The blog maybe one of the most democratic mediums on the internet, but still, I think I'm entitled to also share my subjective views.

Back to the topic. I have concerns for a friend, I cannot talk about it here, but let's just say his or her pride, and definitely stubborness, makes it hard for me to convey my concerns.

I could be wrong, mistaken, I could be assuming something that I don't know much about, but, come on, at least hear me out, and if you can't accept my concerns, at least think about why I have these concerns. I can easily just forget about it, forget about you, and pretend nothing's wrong, and I'm sure that's the better way for you also. Now which would you prefer, me leaving you alone, or continue to be your friend and listen? For God's sake, don't be paranoid, or have your pride feel threatened or anything. Just look at the years past in hindsight, what have I ever done to take anything from you, to undermine you, to make you look bad, or any other thing that might be hell for you? Nothing. And frankly, that's something I can't say applies to you.

It's always saddening when you know you're not appreciated, even though you have put out your best efforts.

Phantom Of The Opera

After work yesterday, I met up with Alfa and Vira ad Plaza Semanggi for dinner, and afterwards, catching Andrew Lloyd Webber's and Joel Schumacer's rendition of The Phantom Of The Opera. I'm not familiar with the original story adapted for the play, then for the screen, but story-wise, there are a few holes in the script.

Nevertheless, an entertaining movie, although I don't think I can sit through the actual Broadway show, or even a second viewing. Seemed pretty long to me. Forgive your uncultured friend here, but I guess not all parts of the movie were interesting to me. I do admit, though, the movie was entertaining, and the songs are still recorded in my brain.

Well, you have to watch it anyway, although maybe not necessarily on the big screen.

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

New Composition

As promised, here are the photos of my room:

Here you can see my 26-year-old TV (on the left with the dials, partial), my water dispenser and fridge, my beloved acoustic bass guitar, my shoe rack (with the beloved shoes), my Zero Gravity lamp, the towel hanger, and the cat-shaped clothes hanger on the wall.

My very feminine clothes cupboard. C'mon, it came with the room. Notice a stack of boxes on top of it... it gets higher every month.

My king-size bed. I can sleep any position I want, any angle I want. On the headboard there's a few books, my minimal CD collection, and the radio. Also, a reading lamp me and Djepun made from Rp 20.000 worth of material, glowing in the corner. It's actually just a lunchbox with a lightbulb inside.

The "work corner". There's my desktop computer, a PowerMac G4 400 Mhz, ancient by today's standards, but sufficient nevertheless.. for DVDs and digital music. My printer, a Canon iP1000, and a better look at the 26-year-old Toshiba TV set. Yes, it works. Yes, it's color.

A closer look at the acoustic bass guitar and the Zero Gravity lamp.

The Mac... again. Nuff' said.

Well, I know it doesn't look like much, and it seems messy and full with stuff... but it's home, and sometimes a workplace when needed. Come by sometime, if you can. :)

The Apparent New Reality

I'm sitting here in my new office room, waiting for prayer time before I head home, accompanied by soft songs from my laptop, and I just remembered something that was one of my initial reasons not to move into the room in the first place: the apparent solitariness of it.

With only the desk lamp on, the tunes, and a window overlooking the nearby buildings, it just suddenly struck me. This place is but a small window from the world outside, and I don't think I'll ever be able to pick out which window is mine if I looked at the building from the street. I am resisting the cliche urge to sit on the table next to the window and just watch the sunlight drain from the city, replaced by hundreds of small specks of light here and there. But I do lean over and look; the over-priced apartment building next to my office building, the unfinished (and never will be) hotel building behind it; the cars and buses, the pedestrian crossing bridge, the ubiquitous garbage....

I recall something I heard somewhere; I think it was a movie, but I'm not sure what: It gets very lonely at the top.

I just realized what such change the move into this room has; other than the obvious step forward in my career, but also a slight shift in everything else: a new perspective, a new outlook on reality, a new energy. But also, the realization that despite my desires otherwise, sometimes a moment just can't be shared. Sometimes that's a good thing, but right now, I felt I had to share my thoughts of this minute.

I need to share. I guess that's why I have a blog.

Monday, January 3, 2005

Fresh Start

Three months into the job (and three months on this blog as well), I am finally settling in my own office quarters. No more cubicles for me, at least for now at this office. Now, for a person of my level, usually they are entitled to get their own office space, because the need to have meetings and such; but I never really bothered because I usually meet people in my boss' room or outside the office anyway.

One of the rooms had been empty since December, because she moved to another company, but I didn't quite want to bother with moving until yesterday I finally started to move stuff. The room was still a mess, so one of the office guys helped me tidying up, and I moved my still minimal office belongings to the new 'crib'.

And the walls are purple. I guess I'll have to live with that.

With the new room, comes a higher level of privacy, and responsibility, but I feel that it should be giving me the necessary kick to start the new year with a bang. Bang.

Before I know it, I'd have a dozen stuff from home here already.

Sunday, January 2, 2005

Putting Everything Together

Sometimes, when it's the holidays, or the weekend, or your day off, a few hours, possibly the whole day, spent for quality time with yourself, is refreshing. In between going to Serpong on the 1st, and lunch at Plaza Senayan on the 2nd, I had quite a lot of time to myself, either to just simply sleep in, read a book, or do other stuff.

My room is looking a bit nicer (and certainly cleaner, too) now that I have tidied up a bit, reorganized some stuff; I must admit, on occasion it still looks like a used electronics store with a bed, but the new layout, albeit with minimal changes, is suprisingly refreshing. I stacked all the electronics in one line, to free another corner, where I can put the towel hanger, the shoe rack, and my Zero Gravity lamp. Then I attached the cat-shaped clothes hanger Djepun gave me with some Blu-tak to the wall by the towel hanger... I won't be hanging anything there, but it looks nice anyway. (I'll post a few photos later).

The room is also well-stocked with food, albeit some junk food, from previous stockings and leftovers from new years'.

I just want to start the new year just right. Let's see what happens this week...

Let's See What Happens Next

First of all, happy new year. May the new year bring wisdom and joy to everyone.

It's a bid sad that the new year passes at the moment when so much sadness and suffering is going on in Aceh. I still can't bring myself to watch the newsreels on TV, with bodies everywhere, devastated cities, and people crying. Everybody crying. Nothing happy on the news (well, there never was anyway.. but this time, it's different).

It's comforting to see how the nation just came together and at least made some small contribution for helping the tsunami victims; all these companies, albeit with the obligatory public broadcasts, donating very large sums of money... and it's a bit sad, that at this time of sorrow, only now the nation is more united than the past few years. A disappointing note; a group of students held a demonstration at Bunderan HI today criticizing the government for being inept at handling the crisis.

Here's my take: with a catastrophe of this magnitude, who can really handle it?? I doubt that even if this happened in the US, the government would handle it better. This thing was BIG. And considering that the existing infrastructure before the disaster was already minimal, now it is virtually non-existent. I see the fact that the government actually was already able to start giving out rations 1 day after the disaster as already a good effort. You know what those students should do? Shut the fuck up, and use their demonstration warchest to go to Aceh and help with the relief efforts. Hope you guys are reading this; take a look at what's going on yourself over there then make an opinion if the government is inept or not in handling this. I'm not usually a pro-government kind of guy, but give them a break; nothing like this has happened for over a hundred years. (Well, at least that's my take on the facts I have).

Well, anyway.

I invited a couple of friends over to my house for the new years' , to watch DVDs, eat junk food, perhaps get drunk or get high (I will not confirm anything here :D). It was fun lah. In some way, it was necessary. Sometimes you just need to be reminded which people are the closest to you, and I'm glad that a lot of them were there at my house. Even if I only got 2 hours sleep as I had to pick up my brother at the airport the next day, I had fun and I was happy.

My brother was only in town for 1 night, but we made the most of it; lunch together, hanging round the house... and this afternoon, lunch at Chatterbox before he had to check out at his hotel.

And, after a bit of the usual depression-related moods before the new year, the days after are refreshingly emotional-baggage free. Don't know what that means, though. I guess I'll just enjoy it for now.