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July 31, 2002

the loudest...

...sound of silence is ignorance.

July 30, 2002

solved! :D

and it was quite unexpected, too! not only was the flash compatibility issue solved, but the templates were also reduced from 6 to only 3 and the number of pages are thus reduced by half!!! SO happy!!! :D

July 28, 2002

we don't understand what we can't create.

and thus we can't fully appreciate them and take them for granted.
like trees, for example.

July 25, 2002

trees

ahhh... this reminds me of barton springs... i wish i could be there right now...

energized!

for some unknown reason i feel very happy and energized today...

could it be:

1) the improved weather?
2) the fact that i haven't smoked a cigarette for nearly 5 days and don't even crave it?
3) the afterglow of watching "the road to perdition" last night?
4) the newly recycled design for my portfolio site?
5) the intense morning coffee consumption (2 cups already and it's not even noon yet)?
6) the completion of 4 out of 6 online tours?
7) because it's thursday, and it'll be weekend again soon?
8) or could it be... it's because of ... ? ha! :P

anyway, contribute your words + images to born magazine...

July 22, 2002

"orang asing"

(a friend sent this today... very interesting stuff...)

Tempo - 1 Agustus 1999
goenawan moehammad

Ketika persatuan menjadi kesatuan, sebuah negeri pun menjadi totalitas, dan orang asing akan terusir dari ambang pintu. Totalitas adalah sebuah kehendak, mungkin sebuah ambisi, untuk merangkum apa saja yang lain, yang berbeda, dalam satu kesamaan.

Totalitas adalah sebuah mimpi tentang kebersamaan secara khusus: kebersamaan sebagai kesamaan.

Bukan kebetulan apabila ada sambungan antara mimpi semacam itu dan tata yang "totaliter." Ketika Supomo, ahli hukum dan pemikir utama yang menyusun Undang-Undang Dasar 1945, membayangkan Indonesia yang akan lahir, ia dengan bersemangat memakai istilah "totaliter" untuk Republik yang datang. Ia mencita-citakan persatuan Indonesia menjadi kesatuan Indonesia. Seperti sebuah keluarga. Seakan-akan sebuah republik adalah sebuah unit yang alamiah. Dan ketika sebuah republik dianggap sebagai sebuah satuan yang alamiah, sebuah kehidupan yang rukun pun mungkin akan terbayang, tapi akan selalu ada orang asing yang terusir dari ambang pintu.

Orang asing: ia sebenarnya tidak pernah jauh. Ia dekat dengan urat nadi kita. Orang asing adalah siapa saja yang tidak bisa tenggelam dalam ambisi kesamaan. Siapa gerangan yang tidak bisa tenggelam itu? Jawabnya: setiap wajah. Wajah, seperti kata Emannuel Lavinas, bukanlah sekadar gabungan hidung, dahi, mata, dan seterusnya. Wajah adalah "sebuah cara yang tak bisa direduksikan, dengan apa makhluk dapat menghadirkan diri dalam identitasnya".

Dalam pandangan ini, wajah lebih dekat dengan pengertian "raut muka" ketimbang pengertian "paras", yang hanya menyentuh permukaan, tempat tata rias digoreskan, sering dengan cara yang sama dan hasil yang mirip. Namun, "raut muka" juga lebih bersifat jasmani. "Wajah," sebaliknya, mengandung sebuah rahasia. Tapi ia juga sesuatu yang hadir, yang muncul, seakan-akan mengandung sebuah inspirasi, bahkan mungkin wahyu, yang diwedar: ada sesuatu yang menakjubkan dalam manusia. Sebuah enigma. Juga sebuah "epifani".

Ia tak bisa diringkas. Ia tak bisa diringkus. Ia tak bisa diketahui, bila pengetahuan adalah sesuatu yang menguasai rahasia yang tak terbatas dalam sebuah konsep yang terbatas. Ia tak bisa dikuasai oleh penalaran, ia tak bisa diobok-obok oleh analisis, ia tak bisa dirangkum oleh pemahaman. Setiap wajah adalah orang asing, dan dalam arti tertentu liar, tapi Lavinas mengemukakan lebih jauh: setiap orang asing adalah bebas. Aku tak punya kuasa atas dirinya. Ia senantiasa mrucut dari tangkapku. "Ia tak sepenuhnya berada di tempat yang kutempati". Ia mungkin bagian dari kebersamaan, tapi ia tak pernah bisa jadi bagian dari kesamaan.

Dalam salah satu sajaknya, Baudelaire menyebut orang asing sebagai extraordinaire yang dari asal-usul katanya berarti "di luar yang tatanan lazim". Sebab itu, orang asing menyulitkan siapa saja yang hendak membentuk totalitas. Totalitas itu, sebagaimana galibnya, mempunyai sebuah bentuk yang kurang-lebih final, dan pada gilirannya, tak hendak diganggu-gugat. Tapi orang asing adalah wajah, dan setiap wajah mengandung sebuah gugatan. Orang asing, kata Lavinas, mengganggu kejenakan kita dengan diri sendiri, le chez soi.

Dalam sajak Baudelaire, orang asing itu tak punya bapak, tak punya sanak saudara dan handai tolan, juga tak punya tanah kelahiran ataupun kekayaan. Jadi, apa yang kau cintai, hai orang asing? Jawabnya: "Aku mencintai awan, awan yang lewat." Seperti dirinya, awan itu berada dalam transit, sudah berangkat, tapi belum sampai. Tak ada yang sudah dipatok dan dikatakan dengan buku yang ditutup. Bisa dianggap mengganggu, memang.

Tapi haruskah sebuah republik menjadi sebuah buku yang ditutup? Di bawah buku yang ditutup, di luar lajur, selalu ada yang tak terduga dan tak hendak dicatat, yang extraordinaire dan pada gilirannya tak diakui. Di buku tertutup orang harus punya kategori: punya bapak, sanak saudara, kampung halaman, milik. Yang tidak punya akan merupakan unsur yang harus dicampakkan.

Ganjil dianggap sebagai antitesis dari genap, dan "genap" seakan-akan sama dengan sebuah pencapaian, lengkap, penuh, selesai.

Tapi yang ganjil selamanya berteriak, meskipun tak selamanya terdengar. Bukan selalu teriak kepedihan. Keasingan adalah sesuatu yang menyebabkan manusia menghormat, dan pada saat yang sama berendah hati. Orang asing di ambang pintu kita dengan segera mengingatkan kita bahwa kita juga orang asing baginya. Ketegangan di saat itu pada hakikatnya justru meletakkan aku dan dia pihak dalam posisi yang senasib, menjadi "kami", bahkan menjadi "kita" dan dengan demikian, apa yang menakutkan dalam "asing?"

Sekian dasawarsa yang lalu Chairil Anwar menulis, "aku ini binatang jalang, dari kumpulannya terbuang", dan ia mengasosiasikannya dengan heroisme dalam luka. Pada hari ini sudah begitu banyak luka, begitu banyak yang terbuang dengan atau tanpa heroisme dan hari ini kita mulai tahu: setiap aku adalah binatang jalang. Ambisi totalitas mungkin menembakkan peluru. Tapi paras bisa hancur, wajah tak akan bisa ditembus.

July 21, 2002

friday five places

it's kinda late, but oh well, here it is anyway...

1. Where were you born? Jakarta, Indonesia

2. If you still live there, where would you rather move to? If you don't live there, do you want to move back? Why or why not?
I left Jakarta about 8 years ago. Now I'm in Boston, Massachussetts. I miss Indonesia, and I'd like to move back there in a few years, but not to Jakarta, if I can help it (even though most likely I'll end up there, anyway). Jakarta's becoming too congested even for me and I absolutely can't stand the traffic!!! I'll go insane if I have to be stuck in traffic 4 hours a day everyday (which is what will happen if live there)... I'd give anything to move to Bali, though...

3. Where in the world do you feel the safest?
This is gonna sound really lame, but I feel safest with my mom.

4. Do you feel you are well-traveled?
I guess so. I've been to several major cities in Southeast Asia and to most states in the US. I want to go to Tokyo again, cuz when I went there I was only 12 years old, and my only memory of it was about Disneyland. But I've never been to Europe... sniff... sniff... It'll be my goal for next year...

5. Where is the most interesting place you've been?
I would say Bali is the most interesting, cuz there are just so many different things you could see and experience... I went there last year, and I just loved talking to the people... it amazed me how open and honest they were in telling a complete stranger like me their life stories!

July 19, 2002

confusion

"An assumption developed that you cannot understand life and live life simultaneously...
I would say that life understood is life lived. But, the paradoxes bug me,
and I can learn to love and make love to the paradoxes that bug me,
and on really romantic evenings of self, I go salsa dancing with my confusion."

-Speed Levitch, Waking Life

it's weird how the older i get the more confused i am about a lot of things a lot of paradoxes that couldn't be solved, no matter how often and how hard i thought about them... but mostly, the main thing that bother me is this continuous, persistent feeling of always being a stranger who just kinda float along a random road each time.

i guess it is dangerous to base your decisions on relative truths, cuz they don't really help you get to any conclusion... you just get more confused... which is exactly why i think people need an absolute in their lives... and to me, that absolute is God, who provides me with both purpose and hope... purpose, so that i know where i'm going and why (this is useful at times when i feel everything is meaningless); and hope, so that i can go on... well, it's true, there are times when my confusion is greater than my faith, but i am working on it... the problem would be when i stop.

July 16, 2002

not a good day

blah! x(

lots of shit to do at work...

miscellaneous annoyances...

and yet another friend is leaving today for good...
goodbye, audy! :(

July 12, 2002

perk up those meetings!!!

a friend sent this joke today, i thought it was hilarious!

Do you keep falling asleep at meetings? What about those long and boring conference calls? Here's a way to change all of that!

1. Before (or during) your next meeting, seminar, or conference call, prepare your "Bullshit Bingo" card by drawing a square. I find that 5"x 5" is a good size. Divide it into columns - five across and five down. That will give you 25 1-inch blocks.

2. Write one of the following words/phrases in each block:
synergy
strategic fit
core competencies
best practices
bottom line
revisit
take that off-line
24/7
out of the loop
benchmark
value-added
proactive
win-win
think outside the box
fast track
result-driven
empower (or empowerment)
knowledge base
at the end of the day
touch base
mindset
client focus (ed)
ballpark
game plan
leverage

3. Check off the appropriate block when you hear one of those words/phrases.

4. When you get five blocks horizontally, vertically, or diagonally, standup and shout "BULLSHIT!"

The following are testimonials from satisfied "Bullshit Bingo" players:

"I had been in the meeting for only five minutes when I won!" Jack W., Boston, MA

"My attention span at meetings has improved dramatically!" David D., Tampa, FL

"What a gas! Meetings will never be the same for me after my first win." Bill R., New York, NY

"The atmosphere was tense in the last meeting as 14 of us waited for the fifth box!" Ben G., Denver, CO

"The speaker was stunned as eight of us screamed "BULLSHIT" for the third time in two hours !" Kathleen L., Atlanta, GA

waking life

my new favorite movie! and the setting was in austin, too! hmmm... i miss austin... :(

i have three favorite scenes/topics: 1) the never-ending, no-resolution, hundreds of years old debate about free will vs predestination; 2) there are 6-12 minutes of brain activity after your body shuts down, which explains why you could have this really long, detailed dream, and yet you only slept for 1 minute in real time; 3) fear and laziness --- the two reasons why humans can't reach their full potential.

i need to rent the movie again... there was just too much to absorb in one viewing....

long weekend

it was a very busy weekend for me... went to see fireworks at the esplanade on the 4th... it was at least worth the heat + humidity we had to suffer... will post pics soon... afterwards we went to 711 Boylston for some jazz + wine... the band was really nice, complete with cello, violin and trumpet... and the vocalist sang sinatra... mmm... :)

next day went to newport w/ kunto and ralph, and saw "the breakers," vanderbilt's mansion by the sea... one word: excessive! some of the stuff were impressive and beautiful, but combine them altogether, and they just lost their beauty in a jumble of bad randomness... then again, maybe that's just me.

but the scenery outside of the house was just awesome! we just sat on the grass and looking out at the sea and the sky.... you could also see the skyline of the city across... very pretty and soothing... the clouds are very similar to the simpson's clouds... took a lot of pictures of yellow seaweed... i just like the brightness of it and the texture... later that night we went to 711 again, but there was no band this time... :(

on saturday, me, sisca and kiki decided to do a weekend painting project... so we went to the art store and bought some paint and canvases... not sure what got into me, but i painted this really depressing (or contemplative, depending on how you look at it) cigarette butt surrounded by dark red walls... which didn't really match my mood that day, cuz i was having fun and practically bouncing off the wall with bursting energy i got from all the food and sweet stuff i kept eating all day...

anyway, on sunday i went drinking (again!) at barcode with audy, kiki + martin... i didn't plan on it, i swear! but for some reasons we drank a LOT... like 8-9 glasses each, which wasn't too surprising, really, cuz we stayed there for about 5 hours, until the place closed. i don't even really remember what we were talking about anymore... :P

July 03, 2002

zelda

i just got a new zelda ringtone for my cellphone and it's really really cute...!!! here's how it sounds (much shorter than this, of course, but you'll get the idea). i would even let my phone ring for a while so that i could listen to the entire tune before i pick it up... :P