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January 29, 2003

winter blues

not sure why, but i've been so restless these past couple of days... i started smoking a lot again, like half-a-pack+ a day. my normal intake was at the most 3 cigarettes a day. and the worse thing is, i smoke in bed while watching movies for hours. now my poor bed stinks of cigarette. yuck.

i was just counting the cold months we still had to go through last night at dinner with siska... it's not gonna be anywhere near an acceptable level of warmth until june. so four more miserable months in this bitter cold. before i moved here, i could never really appreciate warm weather and sunshine. now i finally understand why tropical places with a lot of sun all year round like indonesia is such a popular destination for tourists, esp. those who came from wintry climates like this.

moral of the story is: don't take your normal everyday things for granted. often you don't realize how lucky you are to have them until they're gone. cliche but true.

but, man, i still can't get over this damn weather! how my poor nose and ears have to suffer every morning... i hate it! hate it hate it hate it!

anyway, talked on the phone with my mom for 2 hours just now, which made me feel a lot better. but i think i drank too much coffee today, cuz it's 1:30am and i'm still so wide awake. i don't even have any more books to read. nothing to do. thus, this pointless ramblings just to pass time... :P

January 23, 2003

a good day, afterall

it was 3F this morning when i was getting ready to go to work and checked the weather. 3F!!! i immediately called a cab. there's just no fuckin way i was gonna walk to work in this insane single-digit weather.

but today turned out to be a really good day, afterall.

my supervisor worked from home today, and i got the final approval from the big boss to use the colors i wanted instead of the ugly blue my supervisor forced me to use a few days ago. i also got a new project to design some premiums that includes a mousepad, notebook, and various other little things for this new product that we have.

after work, i went to the AIGA show & tell presentation in cambridge with jen's friend, matt. all of the pieces had similar themes: complex data visualization and patterns. one of the presentations was really interesting; it's titled: "The Shape of Song --- What does music look like?". another one demonstrated a type of project management application built in flash and xml that was pretty impressive, and yet another one was kinda intriguing... it was about ambient devices. physical objects existing in our periphery of vision that are less intrusive, but give us information we wanted without requiring much effort. hmmm, i can't explain it properly... go here for more details.

but my favorite was the presentation from wgbh that talks about contextual learning, featuring this really amazing site about the history of world economy. check it out here.

wendy came towards the end of the presentation, and then she drove me home. it's too bad we didn't have time to talk more. she had to go to a friend's place, and was not feeling very well after her trip from indonesia. a few minutes later, evi came by and we chatted for about an hour. she also brought me mg2, episode 9-20! yay! :)


today i've been feeling a very strong urge to write just about anything that comes to mind. i don't know if it's because a) i'm bored; b) i have a lot of things in my mind; c) i'm feeling guilty for not writing in my blog for so long.

it might be the combination of all of the above.

in any case, these past two days i've been obsessed with the idea of getting a master's in the netherlands next year. i already know which program at which university i'll be applying to; the interactive media program at the frank mohr institute in groningen.

why netherlands? i guess i'm just fed up with living in the states for so long. i need a change of scene. a new beginning. something exciting and adventurous and completely new. i've never gone to europe before, and netherlands seems as good as any other place in western europe. plus the fact that some of my mom's relatives are still there, and there are a lot indonesians living there. not to mention relatively easy access to indonesian food.

another supporting factor is that schools in the netherlands are much much less expensive compared to the ones in here. i just need to save more so that i have enough money to ship myself to groningen fall 2004.

by the way, i found this beautiful collection of writings today (most are in indonesian)... check it out.

and speaking of links, try blogfodder when you're sitting there in front of your computer and have nothing to write on your blog.

January 22, 2003

friday five jobs

another one for friday five:

1. Where do you currently work?
an educational publishing company in boston, as a web designer.

2. How many other jobs have you had and where?
my first real job was doing web design for a 3-person web company in austin, followed by another design job at this huge internet consulting company called marchFIRST that went bankrupt in 2001 as the dotcoms crashed. then i moved to boston for my current job. but before all of these happened, i had a part-time job doing publicity for an art gallery, two waitressing jobs at japanese restaurants, an internship at an ad agency in jakarta and then another in austin, plus various countless freelance works.

3. What do you like best about your job?
its summer-hour policy, where i could get off at noon every friday from june thru august.

4. What do you like least about your job?
maybe it's just me, but it seems like most of the company has this unhealthy obsession with the superficials.

5. What is your dream job?
have my own company that creates and produces interactive learning tools for children, with headquarters in bali.



can you believe this weather? translated to celcius, it is -11C, but feels like -21C! and it's going to be even colder tomorrow... i don't even wanna think about how i'm gonna have to walk to work tomorrow in that icy wind... hmm, maybe i could just cab it? oh, why did i ever have to move to new england?

on a slightly better note, i bought another thievery corporation cd from amazon, and pre-ordered the harry potter 5 book to console my winter blues... but "order of the phoenix," that's the name of the 5th book, wouldn't come out until june 21st. well, i've already been waiting for 2 years now, so waiting for another 6 months shouldn't be a problem...

i'm submitting my annual performance review today... i guess we'll see what happens... but i'm really hoping the bonus wouldn't be taxed that much... rumor has it that tax for bonuses will be about 40%... yikes... i really wanna get a digital camera. i'm eyeing the nikon coolpix 4500... sweet, eh? so cross your fingers for me and hope that there will indeed be a bonus in 3 weeks...

January 02, 2003

new year's eve

we were hoping to see boston's first night fireworks from billy's roofdeck... but turned out that there was a building blocking our view to the harbor where the fireworks were launched. we could only see the sky turned into different colors, but couldn't actually see the fireworks! damn building!

personal vs commercial

hmmm... just finished watching episode 8 of meteor garden 2 (yup, i'm one of them :P) and read some of the postings about mg2 at the indosiar online forum. seems like the fans are very disappointed in the main character's drastic change in attitude and love interest (me included), and the gossip is that they're boycotting the tv show in taiwan that the rating dropped... the screenwriter then had to revise her (his?) storyline to satisfy the fans' demands....

which made me think... where do you draw the line between personal expression and necessary commercial purposes?

i guess when you're writing a sequel to a popular tv series, esp one that is almost becoming (or has been?) a cult to its fanatic viewers all around asia, you should know better what you're in for. it's impossible to escape the fact that the main idea behind the whole thing is nothing but pure commercial, and so of course it has to be tailored to what the consumer wants, just like an ad or any other form of mass communication where target audience is king. so it's not so much a question whether the director/screenwriter sell out, because i'm pretty sure it was meant to be a commercial product from the start.