Monday, December 22, 2008

Tribute - Entry#1

I always feel that supporting women's right is a good cause. Women certainly has a unique position in our society, and while labelled with physical weakness, in general I think they are not weak.

I always admire my mom, not least that she is capable to support all three of her children by herself until today. For twelve years has passed since our family weep in his death. In my eyes, she reflects a strong figure, and I belive that there are a lot of women like her in far more unfortunate situations in various corners of the world, trying to make ends meet for their family.

I always wondered what's on their mind, how much have they earn for the night, what did their children and family feel when I see women on the street selling various goods. Most importantly, I wondered if they can provide enough for their family. It was almost 4 years ago that I first see women selling roses at Dago during the night. And I still feel the exact same way everytime I encounter them, riding past them on my bike.

I always feel weak whenever I'm around them, realizing that there is little help that I can do for them. So I pray. For the best of them. And for my mother.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Apa iya ini caranya memimpin?

Contoh Kasus B: Acara yang melibatkan pelantikan bertradisi. Di suasana dingin tangkuban perahu, c. 2006.

Kecapekan mengejar-ngejar pembicara agar berpartisipasi di rangkaian workshop pelatihan selama lebih dari dua bulan. Berputar-putar Bandung, berbagai macam panggilan telepon. Dan kegiatan kami adalah bagian penting dari organisasi yang dipimpin lelaki itu. Empat huruf nama depan. Empat huruf nama tengah. Diawali dengan huruf A.

Tapi semua berjalan lancar. Hingga datanglah puncak rangkaian acara.

Dan kami mengundang para alumni. Sayangnya salah satunya tak puas. Kamipun paham mengapa.

"Coba, yang di situ namanya siapa?" tanyanya sembari merujuk kepadaku.
"Emmm, Mateo Maleo?" salah satu dari mereka mencoba, dengan sia-sia untuk menjawab.

Dan dia pun murka. "Mereka belum belajar apa-apa! Apa iya pantas kita terima?"
Sang pemuka dengan huruf pemuka yang membuka itupun tiba-tiba berganti haluan, "Ya sudah, kita jangan lantik saja mereka sekarang."

Apa iya, di tengah-tengah acara yang kami harapkan jadi acara pamungkas hingga kami akhirnya bisa istirahat dia seenaknya memerintahkan agar kami menderita lebih lama? Tak hanya Ia tak pernah terlibat, namun ucapannya itu juga membuyarkan semua acara yang telah disusun dengan susah payah. Di tengah acara. Tidak memberikan dukungan. Para anggota yang letih. Apa iya ini cara memimpin yang baik?

Adu mulut tak terelakkan. Saya rasa Ibu Hijau ini masih ingat. Dan meski akhirnya acara bisa selesai, kami tak pernah lagi melihatnya dengan cara yang sama.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Certainly this is not the way to lead?

Exhibit A: The case with a Heroes-like poster for the event.

Time: Some half a year D-Day.
"I now delegate the power to you to conduct the following events for your division: sun observation, night observation, and a general lecture. All targeted for general public. And with a telescope training for our new members. You have full liberty to conduct the events on the available timeline, and I assure you I'll do my best to assist," so he says,* as the man of the highest power.

Time: Two weeks D-Day.
"I think we should borrow a room at Campus Center, as it would be very easy to grab people's attention. Can you do the administration needed for that?" then she politely asked me. After all, being a superior in this organization did not put her all the way above her equals. She needed me and a lot more people.

Time: A week before D-Day.
"You know, I think it's too much hassles to borrow the room there. let's just use the big one in our department. Definitely easier. I'll ask for the paperwork."
I agreed with her. Not really motivated.

Time: Day D-2
Then I said: "Here's the poster design you asked. Hope it's not too bad."
But she beamed excitedly, "This is good. What do you guys think about it?" She continues to ask the nearest group of people.

Time: D-Day, 0900
"Can you come over a.s.a.p. and bring your laptop with you? We had a glitch here, mine won't relay the sound, his won't connect to the projector."
She sounded urgent, and I understood the urgency. I am, after all, a part of this wobbly committee. That and I plan to attend an information session at campus anyway.

Time: D-Day, 1130
Me and her already in the campus auditorium, a different event altogether. Envying the thrown chocolate bars by people from McKinsey. Suddenly her handphone buzzed. It was a message from him, all power and wish-wash.
"Where are you? People are now dispersing. No chain of command. Did you really think you were capable of handling the event? If you weren't, maybe you shouldn't have hold the event today after all."
She was silent. Then she gather her act fast. But I can feel that the message is a certain buzz-kill. It came during the event. From a superior. Not a support during harsh times. And what good really did he hoped to come from the message?

Time: post-event, 2030
Over donuts and coffee and sodas and ice creams, we debase. A somewhat larger group of people has join us. Complaining behind their back. Venting off after an exhausting day. And it was all.
But tomorrow will never be the same.

--
*Diction, language, tone, and manner of speaking may not be accurate. This dialogue, and all dialogue hereafter, although put under direct quotation, served only to describe the chains of events. But you should've gotten that by now. This is, after all, a mere blog.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Miserable is an understatement

The journey home from Mataram is by far the most unpleasant part of the whole trip. It began in the morning with a queasy feeling from the thought that my holidays are over, the thought of having to haul a heavy backpack, along with the thought that my luggage has somewhat grown several kilos. around 8, I realized that I hadn't retrieved the feedback envelope from the Education Officer, and that the form detailing the NTB representatives for ISDC were still incomplete.

Yet I survived. although the half kilometer or so walk in search of tukang pulsa to load my cell pre-paid credit was note-worthy. 2 shops unable to give service, 3 others were suspiciously still closed at 9.30 am. also getting laughed at by the SPG in an XL-only shop (eh, it was worth a shot), and I finally able to reload my cellphone credit in a shady store, similar to those dreadful, soul-sucking girlie shop like you saw under the name of "Stroberi" or "Bunga" in Bandung/Jakarta/Jogja malls. Only less pretentious (it was named "Girlie", displays racks full of women underpants and bras (of various color and size) but has a strangely punk-like design for its banners). Surely double-take was the only appropriate reaction, and I did precisely just that. Waiting for a full two minutes before the shop attendant showed up just didn't help. At all.

And at precisely 10.02 I checked out of my room, went out in search of a decent taxi from the pool some 20-meters away and found none. Law of Murphy in work, Ladies and Gentlemen! Out of vanity from taking ojeg offers I then walked some 400-meters (remember the backpack!) and just right to after that I slipped and hurt my ankle. Right in front of hordes of motorcycles waiting for the red light to get green. Embarassment? Checked.

But I finally got a taxi and after a short drive (only IDR10K away), I found myself idly waiting for the check-in counter to open (5 minutes), then proceed to the deserted waiting room, where all the souvenir shop attendants were gathering and watching the cables from the public TV available. because I foolishly did not take out my Altered Carbon from the backpack checked in as luggage, then aloneness, and awkwardness ensued.

Only after an hour or so did the waiting room get crowded, a third of the people waiting are tanned caucasians, in various length of waist line. But the flight went just fine from Selaparang Mataram to Juanda Surabaya.

Precisely after landing did it get to the most miserable part: I am hungry, and I see no western fast-food franchise in sight. I am craving for MSG. I don't dare enter to one of the restaurant, knowing whatever I would have bought there wont sate my need. thankfully the Alfamart there provided Cheetos, and my 20K there was well-spent. Too bad there's no Kusuka available.

around 2 pm, I checked in at the Merpati counter, this time remember to pull the book out of luggage, I head to the waiting room, which in 10minutes was completely deserted as all Air Asia passengers to Cengkareng went aboard.

And that is NOT the scariest part. because after I boarded the plane to Husein Bandung, I noticed that:
1. the plane looks old.
2. It seems that there are more people on this plane than on my previous flights.
3. the wings is visibly battered. some screws seems to be missing (but I might be wrong)
4. it CREAKS! the seat right in front of me creaks! the seat right next to the emergency exit creaks and squeaks!

The fact that halfway on the fight the plane was visibly shaking also did not help. I can sleep just fine on the reportedly superultrabumpy Cebu Pacific flight from Manila to Cengkareng, but my heart clearly pounded extra hard on SBY-BDG flight.

Then we landed. on the pitiful Hussein Sastranegara airport, which in contrast to Juanda, did not host a colorful range of aircraft with various airlines logo on their tails, but an even more battered-looking Batavia craft, and two intimidating planes with TNI-AU writing in it.

But fine, it only has one baggage carousel and the sugarcoating did not help much (two girls greets us in the arrival gate). The manner is typically indonesian while waiting for the luggages. Rude line cutting, carefree smoking, well, I can say no more.

Though even more pathetic was its airport taxi fleet. Old. With fleas in side. Ridiculously expensive (40K for airport-tamansari?). and the driver uses the safety belt on his side to prevent the seemingly inevitable collapse of his chair to the backseat area. and tying it up on the handbrake lever on to his gearstick.

If anything, the only improvement is the long-overdue repair of the trafficlight in the Tamansari intersection. and the comfort of getting to someplace I can call my room to write this. hopefully more on the next writing.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Laptop and RSS

And this day finally come.

The day my laptop begin its journey downhill. the left Ctrl key is now officially beyond my repairing capability (not that I have the expertise anyway). The actual incident did involve a knife, a bad habit of laptop at the foot-side of the bed, and a bad room layout. Que sera sera..

There are dead pixel on the screen already, back from a few months after the purchase. Not a nuisance.

The strange thing is, I dont feel the same attachment with my laptop the way I have with my phone, though it is capable of so much more (obviously). Perhaps because it weigh 2.5 kilos, for one.

but then if there's a good thing from this is that I found a blog worthy subscribing to its RSS, after a quick search using keywords "keyboard acer rusak". A nice blend of gadgetry-related writings, social observation, it even has some quantum-mechanics and philosophy. Hmmm, I might use some of his material for Filsafat Sains A. And better yet, I suspect we share the same absurd campus (it would explains some of his observations), similar age group, albeit different interest and stance on japanese culture. and football. He writes mostly in Indonesian, which is a big deal for me, as I dont have enough grace to write something good enough in my own mothertongue. It honestly crossed my mind that had he been into debating, he'd make a good debater.

And looks like he updates his blog frequent enough. Hopefully it will be enough while sanggar cerita, and Morning Coffee with Dimas had their hiatus.

postscript: Kalo mau lebih jauh lagi, sebenernya saya kangen sama Sinema Indonesia, Spitting the World Politely, dan Whodoyouthinkheare. Vipertongue, The Fool Has Landed, Bertanya atau Mati! dan kolomnya Dave Barry gak diupdate terlalu sering. Jadilah Nguping Jakarta, Vittachi, sama The Naked Traveler jadi top-3 RSS feeds saya sekarang. It's a pretty decent mix on Tabbloid.

postpostscript: apa kabarnya MemorabiRia sama desperate exasperation ya?

Thursday, October 9, 2008

rambling #3: The honeymoon is over.

If I am to choose seven words to describe myself at the moment, I’ll definitely go with "utter lack of conviction in absolutely everything". To make it even more bizarre, this epiphany come during Idul Fitri; and to say this openly is both somewhat exhilarating and terrifyingly disconcerting.

Exhilarating, because by saying this openly I’m trying to come to terms with myself. Though it's also somewhat sad, for all this time I ponder who might be the one best to talk about this, and found none. I see myself live in between two extremes, one religious left with all its religion-bashing conversation, and religious right who are harshly strict and uptight and pretentious. I do see some moderates but none as confused and lost as I am. I sense that I am flirting dangerously close with the earlier extreme, and finding ground is not easy.

Even so, it is deeply disconcerting. For one part, acknowledging that seven-word phrase somewhat gives the sense of disownment to my own upbringing, as my father was a local religious leader. While i barely remember him, his reputation remains, creating a burden to live up to society's expectation of being his heir.

Other than that, I do remember there was a time that I can say as the time where I was most religious. Some seven years ago. Now all I can remember is perhaps my grandma death, some 5 years after my father's, clearly was a shocking motivation. Strangely, the recent death of my grandfather did not bring the same amount of closure. Most probably it's because I was in Manila at the time, disconnected and depressed over the miserable last debates. No second honeymoon with religious conviction as it was seven years ago. The honeymoon is over, for a long time.

But now I’m still lost. Seeing life mundane, bitter, and hardly make any sense at all. My flirt with the left might have yet to come to an end, all the while dancing with the right and putting a mask of serenity. Care for a dance?

Sunday, September 21, 2008

euphoria? not so much.

Pada suatu senin siang yang cerah, saya pun berjalan gembira ke kampus. Bukan apa-apa, hari senin saya memang hanya ada satu kelas saja. Dan tidak seperti senin sebelumnya, kali ini tidak ada makalah, dan langit cerah, yang berarti jemuran saya akhirnya bisa kering. Tapi harusnya saya tahu...

Karena senin tersebut adalah awal dari malapetaka. sebelum saya menjalani serangkaian kenaasan, saya dan Uphie sudah berencana untuk ikut UIDC Software Freedom Day di UI sebagai satu tim dari ITB. dan di lima menit pertama kuliah itulah kenaasan itu dimulai.

karena beliau-yang-namanya-tidak-boleh-disebut-tapi-diawali-dengan-Bo-dan-diakhiri-dengan-bby-dan-memiliki-inisial-nama-tengah-E-dan-dengan-nama-akhir-Gunara yang mengajar Teori Relativitas Khusus memutuskan untuk menjadwalkan kuis di hari sabtu yang lalu, bertepatan dengan UIDC. Tak dinyana-nyana, asa pun tercerai, terserak! *heheh* Kelas TRK ini sendiri sangat menyebalkan, karena Prodi Fisika dengan anehnya membiarkan satu kelas diisi oleh 138 anak di ruangan yang hanya berkapasitas 100 kursi. kelas yang satu lagi? tak lebih dari 20 orang, namun konon dikhususkan untuk program internasional. Berasa di SMA lagi yang mengejar pengadaan program-program prestisius yang mendongkrak gengsi macam kelas akselerasi dan imersi.

Namun satu set dengan jadwal kuis, beliau-yang-namanya-tidak-boleh-disebut itu juga memutuskan untuk mengganjar setiap orang yang kehadirannya di bawah 90% dengan nilai E. dengan berat hati saya pun mencoret NED dan menipiskan harapan untuk bisa ikut CMDC lagi..

Awalnya saya kira ada secercah harapan dari batalnya saya ikut UIDC, karena saya jadi bisa menolong pengurus Himastron mengadakan Garden Party untuk melantik anggota muda 2007. Saya sendiri selalu senang kalau ada yang mengemis-ngemis ke saya, penting untuk meningkatkan image diri soalnya. walaupun saya tahu mereka sebenarnya lebih cinta dengan sepeda motor saya kemampuan saya di berbagai bidang terutama untuk angkut-angkut .

Tapi ya sudahlah, toh saya cuman kebagian tugas jaga mess saja. Yang tidak saya perhitungkan adalah bahwa pulang dari Lembang, saya masuk angin! Muntah, perut mual, dan nafas bau naga! kalau begini caranya sih kacau. [Bleaaargh]. Urp. Permisi...

P.S.: Selamat buat anggota baru H* 2007 yang jumlahnya sedabreg! Semog.. urp.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Answers, Questions, Glitters


Just some more random shallow thought of the day? Why is Yahoo!Answers Indonesia sooooo irritating? Exclamation and question mark everywhere. ABG-SMS lingo all over the place. More often than not, it's utter rubbish: shallow, hotheads, orang-orang caper, answers that are totally irrelevant. Urgh.

This is sickening.

And yes, the same thing is just ubiquitous. Heavy empphasis on Friendster with all its glitter.

Hysteria

Black hole button at LHC? Now we're speaking.



"In case of imminent world destruction, break glass and push CMS abort button"

Friday, September 5, 2008

Yuck of the Day #2

When Abraham circumcises Ishmael and his household, for example, “he set up a hillock of foreskins, the sun shone upon them and they putrefied, and their odor ascended to the Lord like sweet incense.”

-taken from Abraham: A journey to the Heart of Three Faiths, by Bruce Feiler, page 75

Eww. While the very thought of mutilating one's limb is shuddering enough, making a pile of the dismembered organ is just sick. I won't even go on the odor. Urgh.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

On August 28th

It is now official. I hate cheerful people in the morning. And people trying to be nice at 2 am.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

On August 27th,

I'm having a good time at the 2nd international olympiad on astronomy and astrophysics farewell party. Music. Food. Dancing.
Bersama orang-orang paling norak yang bisa anda pikirkan. Who means the world to me.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

What I think on 'What the World Think of God'

For a politician, Imran Khan certainly is not compelling, nor persuading or convincing. How did he get elected? Meanwhile, nun Wendy Beckett is certainly more concerned on packages than on what really matters on discussion. And I found that simply distracting. And frustrating.

Regarding the poll numbers, for Indonesia, we pray a lot[1]. but mostly its because we're in poverty, similar to Indian novelist Sagarika Ghose's point of view to why Hindu ranks highest on praying frequency. 

Interestingly, only about one in four people in Indonesia claimed that they had studied religious text[2]. This may explain the reason why we're short minded and easily agitated in regard of whether a particular thing offend our religion(s). 

However, most of the reason why people in UK don't believe in God is because of the sufferings in the world[3]. Conversely, we're in Indonesia seems to be the ones who live through the suffering but we ranked top 3 as the most religious nation[4]. Is watching more painful than living? 

As the show progressed, the blame game question puts UK as country with highest proportion of finger-pointing people on the poll, while Indonesia has the lowest, with a mere than 8% agree to "I blame people of other religion for much of the trouble in the world."[5]

A very good show from BBC, overall. I'd recommend it to all of you, reader(s).

----

Bonus: complete snapshots of the statistics and quotes shown at the show, here.

And apparently I have trouble putting link from each reference point to the respective image, so you can just head off to the album. Hope I can fix it asap.



And apparently it was not a recent show. but still a good show, nonetheless. see their website here

Rambling#2: non semper erit aestas

Me: Everything that can possibly go wrong went wrong.
Farah: N What was that? Ss (spesial sambal-red) tutup? :p
Me: Now that's a scary thought. 

But really. on July 31st, one of my friend told me that I need to reach Bandung by Aug 4th at the latest to process my final project plan. Seeing no need to hurry, I arrived aug 4th in the morning. At precisely 9am, I was told that the administration closed on Aug 1st. A good waste of energy and money for train.

I began distributed translation works to some at July 27th, giving a week deadline for everyone. Made an exception to one particular, being promised that he would have done it by Aug 4th. Not only did he did not finished it, on precisely Aug 4th, he just began to transfer the work to someone else without me knowing! Effectively deterred the completion of the work by 2 days.

All parts of translated document sent back to me to be compiled before final submission. Found two pages left untranslated. She insisted on her claim that she had translated it all. After two weeks' worth of haggling, it turns out that she had mis-attached the document.

Assigned a paper for me to read since two months ago. After cross-checking, apparently I downloaded and printed the wrong paper. Though it's not like I already able to digest the content just yet. 

Humming happy songs when found out that my leadership workshop application got through. Happily confirmed my attendance in the next workshop. Only after got in Bandung again I realized that the workshop will be hold in the same date with the series of events accompanying the Astronomy Olympiad, one I'm highly expected to participated in. 

Return back to klaten on Aug 10th, hoping cheery thought, fun with everyone else. But then found out that cheery hope is futile. Danti is being hospitalized. Arry is swamped with his last week of work. Cindy is stuck with KKN. Meanwhile, the TV tuner I brought for my sister was rendered useless, as one very important piece of cable missing.

Had it not been because The Dark Knight and the fact that now I officially no longer SEF president, the last two weeks of holiday would deserve a special tag of hell on Earth. 

Manila Misadventures #3: Fruity, Fishy, Feisty

Selama kami tinggal di Makati, kami berjalan-jalan ke banyak tempat (benar-benar jalan kaki!), tersasar ke lebih banyak tempat, dan nge-mall di berbagai mall yang ada. Namun ada satu tempat yang patut disebutkan disini: Balikbayan Handicraft (hereafter BBH), yang mirip kayak Mirota Batik gitu lah. Barang-barangnya juga banyak yang mirip kayaknya (ga pernah ke mirota batik juga sih, tapi mestinya ada patung-patung kebo, mangkok2, kerang2 dll).

BBH ini punya cabang dimana-mana, kami sendiri lihat-lihat yang di dua tempat: Makati dan di dekat Ilalim Ng Tulay (literally under the bridge, dan tentu saja, kami sempat nyasar lagi pas menuju tempat itu). Ilalim Ng Tulay ini adalah paduan antara kolong jembatan Pasopati di Jl Kebon Bibit Bandung (karena di bawah jembatan), Pasar Balubur di Tamansari (karena di sebelahnya ada pasar basah), Malioboro di Jogja (karena kiosnya berasa di Malioboro, tapi lebih lengkap Malioboro), BNI cab. Tamansari (bau deket TPS) dan Pasar Ikan (karena baunya amis-asin ikan asin dari pasar basah).

Sayangnya, level persuasi menawar kami dimentahkan oleh ibu-ibu penjaga kios di sono. saya mencoba menawar pin bendera filipina kecil-kecil dari 35 peso ke 15 peso dan ibu-ibunya ketawa dong. Terhina, dongkol, dan jaim, saya meninggalkan si ibu pedagang itu, bersumpah tidak akan merendahkan harga diri dan membuang-buang uang saya untuk hal-hal trivial seperti oleh-oleh! (25 menit kemudian saya deketin lagi nawar jadi 20 peso tapi beli 15 biji dan tetep diketawain lagi). Jadilah saya tidak membelikan oleh-oleh massal semacam gantungan kunci kayak pas saya dari Thailand/Singapura dulu. Ya sudalah, ga bawa oleh-oleh ga patheken.

Tapi omong-omong oleh-oleh, waktu di Makati, jarak 5 toko dari BBH ada semacam toko suvenir juga (lupa namanya), yang mengaku sebagai toko suvenir pertama di Manila, kalau saya ga salah inget. Dan di toko inilah Uphie menemukan benda ajaib berlabel Peni Fresh seharga 50 peso. Yang dari labelnya sudah jelas kalo itu adalah allusion buat peni(s). disamping gambar tangan yang merogoh.. uhm. Ada juga pasangannya, sabun warna pink berlaber Fem Tight. Gak perlu dijelasin deh disini, hohoho.


Namun yang bikin kami penasaran dan ketawa-ketawa ga jelas selama kami di Manila adalah rasa heran, kenapa TUTTI FRUTTI nya dicetak kapital. dan kenapa pula rasa Tutti Frutti? hehehe.

Belakangan baru saya tahu jawabannya, dari blogpostnya Liza: poin #14. Tahu begitu kan saya beliin satu buat Liza biar dipake Fajar deh. heheheh. *kaburrr*

----
Bonus: complete album can be found at My Opera, or at my Facebook photo album.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Earlimart - Hymn and Her

This was my best find for last month, when the album literally accompanied me everywhere, including the Manila Misadventures, and the trip back to Klaten afterwards. I know I'm a sucker for song with 'oohs' and 'aahs',  notably on track "Time for Yourself."

One better review of the whole album. It seems that the original page has been removed, for whatever reason I don't know.

Although the excitement has somewhat waned, I found this just in time. One that I can heavily associate with myself. Worth quoting from its lyrics, 

"In my heart, I've always known/I gotta be happy alone/So burn the mail, destroy the phone/I'd rather be happy alone"

But why happy alone? I'll say that

"Love is difficult.
For one human being to love another human being--that is the most difficult task
that has been entrusted to us. The final test and proof, the work for which
all other work is merely preparation."

Though the last quote is from Brothers and Sisters, a serial I've been meaning to write about. But that would be all from now.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Manila Misadventures#2: A Midsummer's Night

Dalam banyak hal, Manila sangat-sangat mirip dengan Jakarta--atau bahkan Bandung, terutama dilihat dari sisi perlalulintasannya, mobil dimana-mana, taksi dimana-mana, dan kalo di Bandung kita punya banyak angkot yang ngeselin, di Manila banyak jeepney berkeliaran. Jeepney ini:
1. Kelihatan seperti kaleng rombeng yang ditempeli mesin. beberapa jeepney kelihatan seperti kaleng rombeng yang panjaaaaaang, hampir sepanjang limosin kali, cuman yah, kaleng rombeng.
2. Orang2 bergelantungan di pintu karena jeepneynya penuh, mirip banget kayak angkutan pedesaan atau bis-bis damri. Baca: kaleng rombeng yang dicinta.
3. Menggoda buat dijajal. sayangnya buku sakti australs menuliskan "Take jeepneys for the sake of novelty, but it's probably a good idea to bring a local." Sayapun mengubur niat ini dalam-dalam.

Karena ternyata menggunakan sistem transport di Manila bisa menjadi sangat-sangat-sangat menakutkan.
Selesai australs, kami tinggal di Lucid Tower, suatu penginapan bernama aneh, dan sebenarnya tidak memiliki menara, malah nampak kayak hotel pinggir jalan saja. Dari Fort Bonifacio Global City, kami naik taksi, yang nampak biasa saja, dan bilang ke sopir taksi kalau kami mau ke hotel di Makati, di Vito Cruz extension. Si sopir taksi, yang ternyata tidak bisa bahasa Inggris, menjawab,
"Brerrrlgh! Braughbraugh baraugh!"
Dan kami pun masuk taksi tersebut, senang habis muter2 Bonifacio High Street, dan mall-mall lain di sekitarnya.

25 menit, dan 80 peso kemudian di argonya, kami mulai berbisik-bisik dengan suara keras dalam bahasa Indonesia, "Kok kita ga nyampe-nyampe ya?"
Ke sopir taksi: "Sir, we're going to Shopwise. Do you know Shopwise Makati?"
Sopir taksi: "Bleaurgh. Brautgh!"

Dan 7 detik kemudian, dia menunjuk bangunan terang di depan kami:
"SM mall"
"We’re not going to SM, but Shopwise."
"Bleaurgh. Wrahsjsf!"
"Sir, are we in Makati city?"
"Bhrajgtuys Malate? Braiushd Makati?"
"We’re not going to Malate, we're going to Makati city"

Dan ternyata kita disasarkan oleh supir taksi ke Malate, distrik di City of Manila, bukan Makati di Metro Manila. Ohhh, paling tidak 40 peso lagi melayang!

Dan kami pun berputar-putar melewati daerah tak terpetakan (uncharted territory), sampai pada suatu waktu tiba-tiba si sopir taksi mengulurkan tangan ke depan leher penumpang yang ada di bangku depan (that would be me, thank you) dengan gerakan yang mencurigakan sambil menggumamkan mantra-mantra tenung yang diwariskan turun-temurun sejak pertama kali digunakan untuk menyantet pelaut spanyol yang pertama kali datang di filipi.. ehm. Ternyata dia cuma mau mengunci pintu kami saja. dan yang dia gumamkan ternyata "lock the door". Uhk. Eh, tapi kan kami sudah naik taksi ini hampir 30 menit kunci ga masalah...

Ternyata kami melewati jalan yang melintasi daerah kumuh, dimana setiap orang nampaknya kepanasan dan memutuskan untuk keluar dari bedeng mereka dan main basket, nongkrong, ngrokok, bergosip, sembari telanjang dada. Kalau perhitungan saya akurat, maka ada sekitar 598 orang di jalan itu yang semua bisa saja mengalihkan perhatian mereka sejenak dan mulai mengerubuti taksi kami seperti di I Am Legend, atau War Of The World. Mereka semua memandang dengan tatapan tajam mencurigakan ke taksi kami yang merayap perlahan, dengan penumpang yang berharap taksinya ga nabrak orang. Kami langsung mengerut perlahan di kursi penumpang.

Untungnya daerah yang kami lewati tersebut hanya berkisar 10 km, dengan perkiraan kesalahan pengukuran jarak 9.5 km, dan hanya berlangsung selama 15 menit yang sangat menyiksa (pikiran-pikiran seram melintas di kepala kami: "Are we going to be mugged? We are, right? Is my first question gramatically correct? What is the passive form of mugging? Isn’t mugging a noun?"). Kami akhirnya mencapai perempatan McD di seberang Shopwise yang kami tuju.

Tapi khusus buat saya, ternyata saking leganya sampai hotel, saya ngasih uang sopir taksi itu kelebihan satu lembar 20 peso! Aaaaaargh! Udah nyasar, ditakut-takutin, dan tidak sengaja dirampok lagi 20 peso!

Manila Misadventures#1: It smells funny

It began with a gleaming hope and excitement, not unlike the one I had when I set out to go Worlds 2008. But unlike Bangkok, what I encountered as the Ninoy Aquino International Airport was definitely not anything in the same league as my expectation.
Why?

1. It smells funny. It smells old.
2. It does look old. Even more grim than cengkareng - something I thought not possible, given that Cengkareng was described as "inferior to many international airports in the region" by Wikipedia.
3. It has no fast food chains. I know that is ridiculous, but we couldn't help wondering, as "we've been in Indonesia too long and we instinctively rate 'human development' in various cities according to the franchises established there, i.e. from least developed to most developed: CFC, KFC, McD, Starbucks. Thankfully the city has plenty of fastfood, a curse in disguise of blessing.
4. We actually called it Bandara Palangkaraya, with no knowledge whatsoever what lies upon the ground of Palangkaraya. For all we know, Palangkaraya might have a better airport!

And off we went to an ill start..

Bonus: snapped at the check-in hall

"Offenders will be prosecuted by Hongkong Police upon landing in HongKong"
Ahem.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Lo and behold! The mighty cat is gna... euuuh!

Just how this cat can snatch a flying bat? Even when we consider a cat's ability to jump, I suppose bats can fly higher.Unless it was flying under influence.


As there were no female feline responding its wooing, the cat just grab and began to gnaw on the bat. And that conclude our nature lesson for today, ladies and gentlemen.

Oh, btw, the above photos are snapped at campus center ITB, at one point of our practice, just as dusk approached us..

Manila Misadventures#0: Discordant and Discontented

I'm truly disappointed. Mostly to myself, but I also have a fair share of blame on the others. Though of course, I kept it to myself as I stifle my disagreement from the others. Pretty sure it left a scar. But there's no good in whining, is there? Aside from relieve the pressure a bit for me, of course.

If you don't follow my rambling at the moment, then that's good. But if you bear a bit, some stories from our Manila Misadventure will shortly follow. And some snapshot of it as well, if connection permits.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

interoperabilitas

Banyak orang bilang ga suka blogspot karena ngasih komentarnya susah. Saya sendiri ga tau, tapi kalo punya akun google mestinya sih bisa (dan kayaknya udah banyak juga yang punya).

Tapi saya baru tahu kalo ternyata saya ngga bisa post komentar di blog yang ada di livejournal.com, meski ada tulisannya login dengan OpenID (yang selama ini saya kita ada buat tujuan meninggalkan komentar di blog dari host lain). Haih.

Does God exist?

I certainly hope so. After all, wouldn't it be such a shame if centuries of war, violence, and hatred were all committed in the name of... a mass delusion? Oh we certainly wouldn’t want that, would we?

sumber dari sini

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

After Sex

Rasa-rasanya film After Sex yang baru saya tonton semalam di laptop ga bakal tayang di bioskop Indonesia. Sayang, padahal judulnya provokatif, dan di kumpulan vignette ini 'adegan' yang ditampilkan tidak ada yang benar-benar 'full-frontal nudity' juga. Namun secara konten, mungkin masih terlalu provokatif sih, dari delapan potongan yang ada, ada 2 vignette gay, dan 1 vignette lesbian. Sisanya hubungan heteroseksual. Favorit saya? saya sendiri paling suka vignette pertama dan terakhir.

Vignette pertama (Christopher&Leslie), karena meski temanya tipikal (soal gengsi, "We're [just] friends who fuck."), eksekusinya bagus. Vignette terakhir? Tentang one-night stand, dan coba baca saja sendiri transkrip percakapan mereka dibawah:

[Guy and Girl finished having sex in roof, and then dressed up]
Guy: Uh...
Guy: What's your name again?
Girl: Alanna.
Guy: Ah.
Alanna: What was yours?
Guy: Uh, Marco.
Alanna: Oh. It's nice to meet you again.
Marco: Yes. You, too. R-Really.
Marco: Where, uh--Where are you from?
Alanna: Arkansas.
Marco: Huh?
Alanna: This little town outside of Little Rock.
Marco: Um...Little Rock?
Alanna: Yeah, it's one of the bigger cities in Arkansas.
Marco: No, no, never heard of it.
Alanna: Where are you from, Mexico or something?
Marco: Uh, well, I'm Spanish, and, uh... I'm from Madrid.
Alanna: Is-- What part of Mexico is that in?
Marco: Oh, no, it's--it's in Spain.
Alanna: I know, but isn't that in Mexico?
Marco: No, it's in Spain.
[blank look from girl]
Marco: It's a country?
[blank look from girl]
Marco: In Europe?
Alanna: Oh! Okay, like, by England.
Marco: Y-Yeah, kind of.
[awkward silence]
Alanna: What, um-- What language do they speak there?
Marco: Spanish.
Alanna: I know, but isn't that what they speak in, um--in, uh...Mexico?
Marco: Yes, but the language--uh, the language originated in Spain.
Alanna: Are you sure?

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Blueberry icecream for desert, anyone?

Now, Stardust might not the movie you'd expect to make you pandering the philosophy of the life. But watching the witch dragged the star as she prepares to eat the star's heart does make me think: if you know that today will be your last day on earth, what would you do?

Or to rephrase the question, will you eat your last dinner, while all the while know that it will be the last meal you'll have ever? Will you ask for second?

Now seems to be the right time to think of one theological hell. or heaven, if you please.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I'm truly humbled

And just a few days ago I received an invitation to a meeting from a reputable consulting company, inviting me to a meeting where they'd present their program on building leadership among high performing youth of Indonesia (hey, they did use the phrase high performing students).

So I prepared to attend the meeting, as the idea of exclusivity always appeals me. A good part of my mind thought it wouldn't be a good idea to dress down and my good ol' blue swallow is definitely out of the question. Shoes it is. Part and parcel with all the stains. After all, I don’t want to look like I’m overdressing and overdoing effort there. Hence my decision to wear a sweater. Little did I know that its collar is crooked all along. :-|

When I got there at 10 in the morning, I was slightly daunted--there were hundred or two attending the event--and I remembered myself silently mouthing "wow". Anyhow, they handed me a box embossed with "kartika sari" and I am happy.

And just when I think to myself that I got it poised and dignified--graceful, if you wish--I realized that there are crumbs all over the front side of my sweater and jeans. Ouch.

Moving on from my gracelessness, I myself think that I’m no natural leader, but more one that have seen and experienced being led by many. Of course, I have had several formal positions that put me in charge, and I’d say it can be grouped into two distinct categories:

(1) Resentful, non rewarding position that was handed involuntarily, so to speak. This goes a looooong way from my childhood, when somewhere in third or fourth grade of my elementary school year my teacher assign the role of class leader on one person. Ordinarily, the criteria are as follows: (a) a boy, and (b) have a good grade. The fact that I’m the youngest boy in the class doesn’t really bother them at all, while it does create problem as I don’t command people at all. Not when they're older.

I finally did evade this position in junior high, second year. Phew. Come to think of it, I’d love to blame my social inhibition to this scarring experience. Heheh.

My agony began yet again when i was asked to assume the leadership of a Remaja Masjid organization--I don’t quite know how to translate that--in the hood. Some of you readers might have seen one article mentioned me as a member of Rohis, and some of you might have seen me laugh heartily on the subject, but this was different. My sister had a really good time sneer me for my inability to refuse. Do remind me to write some other post of Javanese politeness. It was also another good reason for me to choose ITB over UGM.

And when i began my freshman year at ITB and people look up on me to--again? please--lead AS05 I just said to myself: "Ha ha. Ha ha." Along with rolling my eyeballs. See above for record on refusal inability.

But that was past. Phew again.

(2) Semi voluntary, less scorned position:
And of course I’m speaking of my presidency here at SEF, one that's going to be concluded in two month. And an earlier similar position in high school. Needless to say that I assume the position only because there's no one stepping up when the elderly graduates. And I simply care too much. Hey, come to think of it, that's too similar, isn't it? Hmmmmm.

All in all, I’d say I yield some friend from my involvement in organizations in the category (2). and it taught me so much i cant help but care, and stepping up. But really, it wasn’t that dreadful, save for the time when there's simply no one around.

Now can I interest you in a contrast from another organization, a lethargic one I’m also joining at the moment? I do pity our current leader, but I guess there's simply nothing that binds the member together aside from a tradition. Which is just sad. (For those it may concern, let it be noted that I don’t feel exactly at home there, and it began all the way from how they do the recruitment process. sorry to say but I just simply can't see more than the self-centered value it imposed). Urgh.

Monday, May 19, 2008

only so much better

There's this person in my head. He's exceptional, brilliant. He can argue flawlessly, wittily, passionately. He can deliver elaborate points and killing PoIs. He can speak high morale unfettered. He's really a good debater. A really great one.
He's me.
Only so much better.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

I-N-T-P

Yep, above are my favourite album covers, and the songs listed under the album will have a high play count, if only walkman counts how many time those song are played on the phone. upon further inspection, I'm sure you can easily find a common denominator of those seven covers: the parental advisory label, as some of the songs contain explicit contents.

If you encounters me on a regular basis, I'm hope you never see mee as a potty mouth, while I myself have a tendency to list pacifist under my characteristic. and javanese101 will teach you not to confront anyone directly, thus lessening the occassion to employ such words.

While it would not be baseless for you to say that my favorite list is somehow made to compensate my characteristic (and maybe it is), I'd like to contend that it's more to the rhythm of the musics that made them to my list. just google up The Bird And The Bee, and then it'd be pretty easy to say that this is a view shared by many; while Nellie McKay's Get Away From Me sure has a witty lyrics.

what i would like to offer as a lesson is a well-known idiom, and for people it is easier said than done: never judge a book by its cover. Sure, some books (or movies, or music albums, or institutions, or people) are crappy and their covers (or posters and trailers, or covers, or logo and taglines, or faces and attires) communicate much of its their crap inside, but it is none of an assured parameted to deduce a quality of work. there are countless stories told where people like you and me deceived to buy an item or two that should be listed as mediocre at best but its advertisements or packages are so damn compelling. of course, it also apply on the contrary, where out of utter chance we tried (or read, or listen, or watch, or order, or acquaint) things we would never order in usual circumstance, and on some special occassion, surprised by its quality.

this is where the folly of absolutism label lies: it simply is dangerous to put the world in a 1-bit mode of black and white, as things inherently have its good and bad side. i personally believe you cannot disregard both extremes of features. and if the recent brouhaha over Roy Suryo's remark on blogger, and the new UU ITE, and on Fitna is of any indication, it shows that at the very least, the world is absurd: some people will fervently reject any imposition of absolutism towards them yet in the very same time seeing the world in a black-and-white perspective.

and i guess there's next to nothing that we can do to alter that. you may call me a pessimist, and i'd happily list it on my index of character, just below pragmatic, several lines below pacifict, and well above affectionate.

ITB EXPO 2008 Debate for High Schools

Amidst the excitement offered by the booths and the main stage in the previous ITB Expo, I guess it'd be pretty easy to miss the completely different amusement at Plano classrooms, where the ITB Expo committee held a parliamentary debate in Indonesian language for high school students. Yes, apparently there are parliamentary debates using indonesian language. And it was indeed an honor for SEF to be able to participate in the tournament as adjudicators for the tournaments.

The tournament itself used asian format, where there are two teams in each debate, each defending or opposing a motion offered, a basic format. During the tournament, as there were no preliminary rounds, it offered the participants added thrill, in addition to the lucrative prize money available (I don't have the details here, but rumour has it it was in order of millions of rupiahs). there were lots of interesting and vigorous debate on nuclear power plants, foreign investment and so on. 

On a side note, the grand final debate was an epic one, as it was a battle of sexes, boys (Tarogog) versus girls (3 Bandung); as well as battle in the manner of speaking, of fast-paced speech (3 Bandung) and deliberate demeanor (Tarogog). Finally concluding the tournament, SMA 3 Bandung speaking on behalf of opposition bench emerged champion of the tournament, defeated SMA 1 Tarogog in the motion of battle between modern market and its traditional counterpart. Congratulation!

As for us, it is very heartening to see our high school students involved in more debate competition which hopefully will then be more involved on issues surrounding them by invoking their critical thinking ability for the greater good. On behalf of SEF, I'd like to express my warmest gratitude to the committee, who had been so kind to provide the very opportunity to take part in the competition.

Monday, April 7, 2008

rambling #1

This is what I wrote Sunday last week, when bad mood kicked. But now I'm good again.  Really.

Cranky, testy and grouchy. Chronic and perpetual when it's the time of the semester: exam.

What's more, you can never expect any solace in any organization you join, as they're more likely to aggravate your stress and bad mood.

Which is what happened to me these days.

It began with Thursday, when I have a lab schedule to observe as a part of astronomy lab course. Curse it! The preparation needed was tedious, wearisome, exhaustive and rigorous in its literal sense. And yes, my lector is part of it. Which is the reason why I partially detest him at this point. My bad mood at the observation session was enough to make me thinking of starting an anonymous blog just for the cause of defamation. Thank god my mood got better after a plate full of food and a sachet of Antangin JRG (thanks, Lucky!). Now at least I can refrain from saying ugly things of him.

Then, before the weariness wane, we had to participate in ITB Expo, which require us to decorate our booth. A. Lot. Of. Work. Shall I say I am overwhelmed? You're a useless slug if you haven't figured that out.

For the next two days, I gracefully evade the hubbub in our booth by signing up to adjudicate the debate tournament, hold as a part of ITB Expo itself. Little did I know that it's not a saving grace. The debates were awful. Hideous. Dreadful flaws of logics. And the food was too salty on day one.

But finally it ends, with a relief I prepared for my midtest on stellar physics. Again, it did not go well. Means there'll be a lot of hard work on final exam. Yukk. As far as the chains of exams went, interstellar matter was a decent one. The same can be said for galactic astronomy, but not for cosmology and astronomy lab, where I cannot recall anything I memorize the night before.

My anguish did not end there, because shortly after my last test or the week ends and I prepare to immerse myself with the bliss of all-night online to cheer myself up, I was barred from happiness! Aaargh! Because I have to pay attention on the meeting for the astronomy students association, hereafter shall be known as h*, one of the most lethargic body I joined as a part of tradition. As usual, delay and late was to be expected, and a scheduled one-hour meeting has to be extended to 3 hours!

In order to preserve my sanity, I get away, to embrace a sound presentation of logic at SEF's training for upcoming alsa ui ecomp. But I did not get what I seek, instead, I got provoked by the pricks working for campus bureaucracy, as well as by my peers, particularly with one’s attitude.. Little fool! Miserable miscreant! And total hypocrite. I have no other word to label someone that can openly say demeaning remarks of "dia kan bego" on jobs requiring English proficiency while in the same time do not know what the word entitled means.

And walked back ho h*, my little hope of get-together escapade to a cinema dissolved into thin air. And I found myself brazen and blatant, kicking things, made a mess on my room when I got home.

So, now what? I've done four ice creams today, and hardly feeling any better, yet painfully aware of the rapid thinning of my wallet. Tons of laundry to do, a room to clean, assignments to do. I feel the very need to punch somebody's light out right now. Can anybody blame me for choosing Get Set Go – I Hate Everyone as my song of the week?

One last thing: help me to refrain myself from saying or writing ugly things about these same people in the near future, will you?

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Mari belajar geografi!

Pernah dengar tebak-tebakan ini?

Q: negara apa yang dilarang masuk bis?
A: maroko, soalnya di bus suka ada tulisan 'dilarang maroko'

atau
Q: negara apa yang jarang perempuan jawanya?
A: Sri lanka

Jayus dan agak garing yah? Tapi waktu saya pertama kali baca tebak-tebakan itu di Lupus, waktu itu rasanya pengen ngakak guling-guling. Tapi bahasan soal negara memang menarik, dan saya pun (biasanya) paling suka motion soal masalah internasional kalo lagi debat. Yang menarik, biasanya ada satu negara yang sering kita (atau orang lain) kutip sebagai contoh favorit.

Anda pembaca Donal Bebek? Kalau iya maka mestinya anda memperhatikan kalau Donal kabur dari Paman Gober, kaburnya pasti ke Timbuktu. (Timbuktu dimana ya?). Kalau soal kelaparan, maka jelas negara Ethiopia paling sering disebut-sebut, seperti kalau bilang ada orang yang kurus-kering kayak orang Ethiopia. Padahal mereka juga ga semuanya miskin lho. lebih ngenes di Sudan gitu. Tapi mungkin sudah nasib Ethiopia. Ada yang tahu kenapa ethiopia jadi negara Afrika paling populer di Indonesia? Kayaknya bisa jadi bahasan menarik tuh.

Sementara itu, kalau bicara tentang bangsa-bangsa ras kaukasian, jelas yang paling sering disebut itu londo, a.k.a Belanda. Nggak salah juga, wong mereka udah lama banget menjajah kita. Ato sebutan kaukasian=bule=londo itu lebih prevalen di jateng-jogja ya?

Yang paling menarik, dan (agak) kasihan juga sebenernya, itu Hong Kong. Entah bagaimana asal mulanya, dalam konteks bahasa sehari-hari, anak-anak muda jaman sekarang (haih!) suka bilang 'ganteng dari Hong Kong?' untuk mengomentari seseorang yang agak kurang beruntung perlu permak wajah. Pertama kali sadar tentang hal ini waktu saya baca tulisan Unspun tentang Adam Air, yang didalamnya ada kliping dari blog-nya Ndoro. Pas pake bahasa Indonesia wajar, tapi kok waktu ditulis pake bahasa Inggris kok rasanya menggelitik aneh ya? Atau itu perasaan saya aja? Saya juga sering pake Hong Kong dalam konteks yang mirip contoh di atas sih, tanpa menyadari bahwa secara implisit, penggunaan Hong Kong diatas itu contoh peyorasi (iya gitu nama majasnya peyorasi?), dan menganggap bahwa yang dari Hong Kong itu selera murahan (cakep dari Hong Kong? (implikasinya, kita menganggap standar cakep di Hong Kong jauh lebih rendah)), atau jauh (deket dari Hong Kong?), atau mahal (murah dari Hong Kong?).

Duuh, kata Indonesia direndahin juga ga ya sama orang luar? Wahai warga Hongkong, maafkan kami! Hongkong keren kok, saya juga pengen ke sana, pengen ikutan Hong Kong British Parliamentary Open bulan Juli nanti, kalo ada rejeki sama temen yang mau diajak. Ada yang berminat membantu?

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

previously, in 2007 (part 2)

As the holiday ends, SEF were busied with preparation for OpenHouseUnit 2007, which went well and there were as many as 200-something people signing up. Talents were spotted and hopes were grown. The air of optimism leads to decision to send newbies as part of ITB contingent to Capital Market Debate at STAN, with Danti leading the newbies, Tizar and Azi to form Team ITB A while the more familiar faces of Uphie, Elfa, and Masyhur joined team ITB B. ITB B managed to advance to Grand final, having defeated team UI B at semifinal, and were defeated by UI A. However, in addition to being Runner-up, Uphie and Masyhur succeeded to seize the 1st and 3rd Best Speaker trophies as well.

Considering into account that talents in newbies should be developed, we arrive at conclusion that more tournament experience is vital, thus sending two teams to UI’s Newbie Tournament was more than fitting. Although the participation was unyielding, it was definitely a good way for Pandu, Gilang, Raisa, Nik, Eling and Nogi to grasp the experience of a varsity-level debate tournament, particularly given the coaching sessions that comes part and parcel with the tournament.

Aside from minor activities like adjudicating in some high school debate tournament and national polytechnics English debate competition at poltekpos, the last major tournament available was Founders’ Trophy at UI, where team Emil-Pandu broke to the Quarterfinal round and team Uphie-Elfa progessed to Semifinal. Pandu was awarded Best Novice Speaker of the tournament.

At last, year 2007 was concluded with participation in Worlds 2008 that starts at December 27th, 2007. As events progressed, team Uphie-Masyhur collected 13 VPs of 9 preliminary debates and broke to ESL Octos. While none all four Indonesian team who broke the ESL round advance to ESL Quarterfinal rounds, it was a remarkable achievement, nonetheless.
Hence ends part two of year 2007, a mere stepping stone. Vivat, crescat, floreat.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

arguendo, omnibus formosior

It's been awhile since I looked up my name in the Google. And this evening, out of boredom, I Googled it up in a different combination: my first and last name only. To my surprise, it listed the page from smoothtournament.com as its first result. This is definitely a good change.

As far as i can remember, the last time I Googled up my name was in 2005, when my friends at astronomy got curious. It was pretty embarrassing, I don’t know why. Perhaps it's the way those journalist and reporters wrote about me, the whole 'from zero to hero'-thingy, simply because i came from a little town where science, let alone astronomy Olympiad is no-one bothers. However, during the course of the events, I was not special; in fact I merely go with the flow. This is why i never listed that achievement as The One.

Rather, I’m more fond of debating, where it's not a one-man show. Naturally anti social, I was forced to forge a solid group; hence the socialization. And to some extent, it worked. The little clique that I formed at high school with several others may have its origin traced to debate. And the ESL breaking, as much as I like to downplay it, I bear it to certain significance.

However, it should be noted that I’m not the star, and even in debating I have had my ups and downs. My initial participations surely can be categorized as downs, where i score a persistent no-good-single VP. It changed at NED, with Wiliam and Ella as my teammates, we broke the single-VP curse. In retrospect, I can see the miserable result as a learning point now. But it was not until AUDC that we come to a relatively stable performance, which can be classified as ups. Breaking to AUDC EFL semifinal, ITB double break at JOVED, breaking to semifinal at PIMNAS, advancing to grand final at CMDC, and lastly, breaking Worlds ESL Octos.

While content with that list, there's one undeniable fact: I always had the best teammate in the pool. As demonstrated by being in a team with Uphie 5 times, who constantly grabs all best speaker awards in sight, and Aino (4), who had endured zero VP at her first tournament with me. Special note also goes to Tyson (3), Wiliam (3), and Ella (3), all three of them were the best available in 2005 debating pool. There are also numerous others who helped in the practice, to list them here for the sake of my debating track record will be simply demeaning. This also applies for my training buddies at high school. I humbly thank you all.

As for now, adjudicating IVED grand final does mean something, and if any of you seeking an interpretation of it: I will cease my activity in debating, limiting myself in coaching and adjudicating, and concentrating on the very thing that brought me to ITB at the very heart: my academic life at astronomy.

I thank you.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Previously, in 2007 (part 1)

The first tournament of 2007 was IVED UnSoed Purwokerto, where ITB team of Uphie-Tyson-Masyhur finished 18th, while Aino was accredited B. Little did we know how the IVED encounter leads to one of many surprises revealed at JOVED. The tournament was so-so, and there's a large room for improvement at food and ceremonies department. However, we did found a place that served a very delicious grilled chicken. Deep fried chicken was also available at that restaurant, where it was surprisingly cheap. 

NTU Dorothy Cheung, as the debaters sought for more competitive yet affordable training ground. Norman was the DCA, Will tried tab for the upcoming AUDC, Bahana scored 4 at the accreditation test, and both teams performed poorly; Team Ella-Safir-Emil managed to steal a VP higher than team Aino-Elfa-Masyhur. The result did scar us. Lots of good debates to be seen, though.

Even so, it was not until the end of the tournament when we found ourselves re-enacting the amazing race, when four out of seven people who left Singapore earlier, all Industrial engineering students, misses the Citilink flight from Batam to Bandung. The three who made it, Ella-Emil-Masyhur were filled with survivor's guilt for at least fifteen minutes. We did have a taxi race, running breathless and lots of panting on the plane.

ALSA UI E-Comp: the plot thickens, some bans the others from being in the same team. Which lead to decision to acquire Dito SBM after Aino's endorsement, who then sent to ALSA E-comp as adj, along with Uphie, while Ella-Safir-Elfa represented ITB as debating team. Sadly, similar result with IVED was seen again.

Amidst the hubbub, along came a request from LPKM to debate and represent ITB at NEUDC Semarang. Fueled with hope of securing a seat at WUDC funded by Ministry of Education, confusion that follows afterwards should come as no surprises. Nonetheless, good surprises came when both teams of Wil-Tyson and Emil-Safir broke to the quarter finals. Rumor has it that the ITB teams, with Martha as adj had a lot of talk with teams from Jogja. UGM emerged as the champion at this tournament.

Finally, May come, and for the first time, an international debating tournament was held in Indonesia. Three teams for ITB finally were arranged: Safir-Ella-Dito for ITB A, Wiliam-Tyson-Elfa for ITB B and Aino-Uphie-Masyhur for ITB C. ITB C broke to EFL Semifinal and faced a five-love defeat from Nando-Engel-Novel from UGM. In addition to Bahana ,Martha and Norman who was the DCA, Faiz and Ragil also adjudicate under ITB umbrella. History was in the making as UI broke to the Octos and later Ateneo crushed NUS at the final in Gedung Merdeka. the T-shirt business, however, was a fiasco, and currently there's still some XS-sized female AUDC Slug T-shirt available. Interested? Contact us. 

As event progressed, more tournaments were coming, and we found ourselves busy preparing for JOVED UII, and eventually we sent two teams: Norman-Aino-Masyhur as ITB B and Elfa-Tyson-Uphie as ITB A, while Safir was sent as adj and Wiliam was invited as adj. Both teams advanced to the Semis, and unfortunately, UGM ruined the hope of all-ITB final. However, ITB A emerged champion, and Uphie stood[1] as the 1st best speaker while Norman trailed in 3rd position.

Rushing to PIMNAS, we--Aino-Uphie-Masyhur--were disappointed with the lodging, and most of all, the adjudicaton. more on the bizarre adjudication can be found here. We did manage to advance the semifinal, though, before we were defeated by UGM. 

Hence ends the first half of 2007 with three semifinals, two quarterfinals, two best speakers and one champion title. A good first half, that is. Appareo decet nihil munditia? 

---
[1] or sit, actually. he was in the taxi to Tugu Station with me and aino when the results were announced.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Inefektifitas dan gimmick

Bandung-Dalam lanjutan RA Himastron dari sesi sebelumnya sebelum musim uas natal, suasana sepi familiar kembali menyelimuti ruang seminar 2 prodi astronomi ITB.
(Terjemahan: i'm dead bored di kosan setelah cuci baju dan memutuskan untuk ikutan RA)

RAKL kali ini memiliki 7 agenda, diantaranya adalah pelantikan ketua baru himastron untuk periode 2008. Pelantikan ini ditunda.
Selain itu, juga direncanakan pelantikan DPM. Akan diselesaikan hari Senin.
(Terj: I really don't get what the hell am I doing here. Lethargic. Setengah jam milih 2 opsi yg sebenernya ga ada bedanya.)

Aargh!