Saturday, July 17, 2010

What the stars mean?

Usually it would be a discussion about Horoscope... but I decided to blog this time because when coming in to the office tonight to browse I looked up at the stars. In an isolated island, with little light and a no air pollution, star gazing is at its best.

It's been a while since I've looked up at the sky at night and got lost counting the stars. I don't go out fishing anymore on this trip because the waters are a bit rough for such activity. But I realize, it's when I star gaze I feel very much close to God, feel in awe by his creation and how small and insignificant I am. It is then I feel I have no right to be arrogant, too proud, and above all. It's a feeling opposite to what I feel on top of a mountain which is feeling close to my creator and, although insignificant, I feel like a part of the universe, a speck that can not be neglected either. Everything mixed together and precipitates slowly in my mind.

It's at times like those days when I look at a certain star and wonder, is there someone like me on another galaxy staring back at me. Or am I just starring at a dying star... and then I wonder...

If a W is a double u, why isn't an M a double n?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

To Be Happy and Congratulated...

It was ma birthday ... it was ma birthday..... *doing birthday dance*

And yes, I finally hit the big 3. I'm 30 and actually quite proud to say it! Being 30 is... different. Usually, every birthday morning I chant my age to my self... 'Today, I'm ... '. OK it’s a bit tacky, but it’s my way to feel my age. It didn't feel much different throughout my 20’s, except for 29 because it was coming in 30. But on the 30th…

It was different, because it was more to...'ok ok... I kinda get the picture now' feeling. In a sense a bit wiser, in my own portion of course. I can see that there's more to life and there's not much more to it. Life is life, it's just what it is. I feel 30 although I still felt 22 just before my birthday. And I think I still feel 14 when I’m on weekends. Shouldn't everybody?

It wasn’t a smooth transition. I had a meltdown, shouldn’t you have one? Contemplating on what you have done in life, what you have achieve, what you wanted, what is in store in the future, your failure, your downside, the things you don’t want and avoid… shouldn’t you have a meltdown as part as the process?

Another thing that I learned was the meaning of congratulating someone on their birthday. In the Indonesian language, saying ‘Happy Birthday’ is actually ‘Selamat Ulang Tahun’ which means ‘Congratulations on your Birthday’. If it was a ‘Happy Birthday’ it would translate to ‘Ulang Tahun yang Bahagia’. That’s interesting. It’s a different context for Indonesians maybe. We congratulate those that have reached a certain age. Is this philosophically connected to the fact that in a developing country death is merely around the corner? Who knows? *shrug*

I thought it was all just BS. Now, never dreaming to be 30, I realize it is some achievement to reach such age. Think about it, you didn't get killed playing too much while you're a kid, you didn't kill yourself during hormonal teenage rage which was the hardest period of my life, you didn't give up when you had to feed yourself, and you didn't slit your wrist when the person you loved didn't love you anymore… you survived! We should all congratulate each other after passing so much.

So ‘Selamat Ulang Tahun’ to me. And a Happy Birthday to me. And to all that will and had a Birthday. It is no doubt something you should celebrate.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

And the neighbors are whispering…

I have underestimated the power of dangdut. I've never been so sure why the Indonesian people love it so much either than because the singers wear relatively  skimpy clothes and they move really sexual as in sex positions and moves :P.  But since I've been exposed a lot to it, I've come to realize, there is a whole different league underneath the shallow surface.
Singing to it in karaoke mode as loved by many Indonesians , I realize dangdut uses so much metaphores that even to my logic is geniusly exaggurated and still remain tacky.  Let me use an example:

-Bisik-Bisik Tetangga-
Originally sung by: Elvy Sukaesih
Bisik-bisik tetangga mulai terdengar selalu ditelinga,
Sehingga menusuk di kalbu
Mengapa engkau harus menyimpan sekuntum mawar merah dibalik kelambu hitam?
Pabila dirimu ingin mencari hiburan, tapi sekurang-kurangnya jangan jual kasih sayang
Walaupun cintaku kau anggap layu di tanggan, tapi sekurang-kurangnya tempat memadu kasih sayang
Dia memang cantik, merayu semakin menarik
DIa memang lincah, selincah burung merpati.

Neighbours are whispering in my ears,
and they're starting to bother my concience
Why must you hide a red rose behind a black mosquito net?
If you're looking for entertainment, at least don't sell your love
Even though you think my love is dying in you hands,
But at least you have a place to share love
She is beautiful, her teasing is seducing
She is frisky, as frisky as a dove

Exactly.!! WTF??? What does this mean? I didn't understand it either. Red rose behind a black what? Entertainment by selling love? A person moving like a dove? Really?
But to the Indonesians this means everything:
Why look for another when you have me (wife/husband) to love you even though I'm your compromise love.

The entire song is telling us about the neighbours gossiping because the significant other is having an affair somewhere.

That's all it's saying. And although it's saying a simple message, it's expressed to the max in sentences that will definitely lift your eyebrowse. There is so much more metaphors used in dangdut, things that would never EVER pop in my mind EVER! Did I say ever?

Dangdut is very melancholic and poetic. A poetic level that is so tacky as if there is nothing else there is in this world either than Love. (And isn't that what this world suppose to be?) It's written by simple minds, head over heals by Love may it be happy or sad, rewarding or disappointing, betrayal of others or by gold or the parents will.

Not to mention the technique of singing dangdut is really hard. They have what you call a cengkok. Pop singers always have difficulty to sing dangdut because of this. It's like R & B singing with all the vibrations and modifications. It's a Melayu thing. Because Wetar and this dangdut antics, I have a bigger appreciation towards dangdut. I understand more of what the Indonesians are about. After a dangdut session, they're all happy and ready for the next day. It's a story and remedy for us. And who ever wants to understand Indonesians, should always start singing dangdut. Seriously!

I use to say that I like the old dangdut songs, but I delete that. I like all dangdut songs because they mean so much more on a different level. And I will always love it as long as I don't have to listen to it too much. 10% of my whole music genre would be enough :D

Eventually I enjoy singing to it, especially if the other employees join in and dance to it. I feel like a dangdut singer, in a corset, miniskirt and boots, ready to be thrown money at. I feel special :).

Sunday, July 4, 2010

I stopped running for a night...

I watched 'The Runaways' a few nights ago. I felt like staying in for the night since I was quite fatigued uploading indohoy. So I watched The Runaways...

Needless to say... I loved it. And I recommend you to watch it. It's a classic tale of a rock band to the end. Well except for Joan Jett that rocks on \m/.

The original Runaways

One of my favorite character was Kim Fowley. Kim knew how to make a rock and roll band. He knew how to evoke the spirit of such raging little bitches.  He knew what to say and everything he said about rock and roll and the male dominated industry was true. He said the truth. He knew how to rock! \m/ I didn't really like the movie version so much as imagining how the live person would be.

But what I felt after watching the movie is my point. I cried. I cried on the 2nd of July 2010, 5 days before my birthday becoming 30. I cried in bed, in my pillow so that the guy in the next room couldn't hear me sobbing. I weeped my eyes out. I cried because I was tired.

Joan Jett had a strong spirit. She had a empowering spirit for all aged women and she kept on going. Sure she probably was a bisexual, but a spirit to spread emancipation all the time is still a spirit to be praised for. A spirit that I wanted to have, and that night, a spirit that I let go off...

I was tired being such a tough girl. I was tired being one of the boys. I was tired of protecting myself of male danger. I questioned why I ever did so? And I question if I will ever continue to do so? Why should I? Empowering women? So guys see me as equal? What is the fucking point? It got me nowhere, and I didn't know if it will get me anywhere else. I was a bit damaged in the past, but I know I can't dwell on this forever. What is my point all this time?

I couldn't answer my question. And I cried harder. I was just exhausted to contradict every male trait and comment passed at me and all women kind. Most women probably wouldn't care if I did anyways.

And untill now, I still can't answer my own questions.

I praise Joan Jett and all her fellow emancipator for doing what she does and having the strength to keep on doing it. For maybe I can not :)