You are currently browsing the monthly archive for January 2007.

I literally read my newspapers at night. What seemed like a good day for me turned out otherwise. Yesterday’s main story was about the SMART tunnel. Samy Vellu said bullshit throughout his entire life which I couldn’t avoid to care less. Inside yesterday’s The Star, page 15, the whole sixth paragraph was, “Samy Vellu said his ministry would come up with the toll rates in the next two weeks, based on construction, maintenance and the bank loan costs.”

Bank loan costs? We have to pay for the construction costs AND bank loan costs? Logically, the appointed concession company made bank loans to cover the construction costs. If what being said is true, toll payers will be paying more than the appropriate amount. Who cares if the tunnel is the first of its kind in the world? As always, we are the brainless people who always agree with the rotten people in power.

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aku

Kalau sampai waktuku
Ku mau tak seorang kan merayu
Tidak juga kau
Tak perlu sedu sedan itu
Aku ini binatang jalang
Dari kumpulannya terbuang
Biar peluru menembus kulitku
Aku tetap meradang menerjang
Luka dan bisa kubawa berlari
Berlari
Hingga hilang pedih peri
Dan aku akan lebih tidak peduli
Aku mau hidup seribu tahun lagi

(Chairil Anwar, March 1943)

Hey, where are you going? The Rolling Stones will be performing in a minute.
“My girlfriend is on the line. I gotta take this call upstairs.”
What? Can’t it wait for a few minutes?
“Babe, I ditched Pearl Jam in Reading last year just to be with my girlfriend. This is small potato.”

Real people with fate (?) written on their palms.

What happen if you spend 7 days with 6 guys you barely knew, who were unmarried, in their mid 30s, in a foreign land? With their lust for life, desperate to get laid, yet pure hearts and divine free souls, I get to experience the true meaning of having fun.

The real art of adult fooling around. I owe you guys big time.

According to Marco Kusumawijaya, both are true. Both don’t contradict one another. It is just a matter of area. A city is not necessarily be modeled after New York or London. Intensive development for at least the past 3 decades made Jakarta a victim of urbanization shock. Developments are not done 3 dimensionally. The city grows rapidly, eating up all the small villages surrounding it and left the people in a cultural misunderstanding. For some people I know, they can always feel at home inside Plaza Indonesia with Starbucks and Debenhams while a few feet away, people are washing their hands in street puddles. A city is not just about functionality but also expression. The expression that Jakarta was trying to tell me, “Help me, please!

My first day in Jakarta, I was all alone. The rest of my fellow backpackers were delayed for a whole day. I remember the first advice I got from a taxi driver just before I set foot at the infamous Sudirman-Thamrin roundabout, “Hati-hati ya, ini Jakarta”. But that doesn’t stop me from seeing the real face of Jakarta.

Early in my lifetime, the old man, within his first 4 years tenure, had launched the Proton project and the Penang bridge project. Some called it mega, but enough to put oohs and ahhs in the people’s mouth. Now, apart from growing larger holes in the people’s pocket, what has he done for us lately? Something significant and tangible maybe?

Stop fiddling with the John F. Kennedy quote in your mind because that just can’t accommodate you with your lust for better living.

Siang itu ku duduk berhamparkan debu,
bertungkus agar diri tidak jatuh,
dikala sekeliling menjadi gelap,
dikala matahari semakin malap.

Si Teja keluar menjual bunga,
si Tuah gelupur rakus membeli.
Lampuan palsu rancak mengerlip.
Si buncit galak menelan, meneguk.

***

Kelabu selubung pepohon batu,
kuning menghambur aliran kali,
tempik mengabur kicauan burung,
terasa kepedihan, keseksaan dirasai bumi.

***

Si Teja memerah, menyusu anak,
si Tuah berkerah, berbeban, berpeluh,
harapan palsu rancak berbisik.
Si buncit galak membolot, merodok.

Sesekali ku mengintai, melihat,
berfikir untuk menidak,
berazam untuk mengelak,
menjadi musafir dilaman sendiri.

Malam itu ku duduk berhamparkan rumput,
berlumus agar tidak gelincir,
dikala sekeliling sudah gelap,
dikala matahari telah padam.

Sebuah penghargaan buat seorang seniman.

The Eye on Malaysia costs RM30 million according to Adnan Mansor (I neglected the Tengku because I heard the title was made up). Hong Kong press Oriental Daily reported that the cost was really RM43 million. Anyway, it was expected to attract 2 million passengers throughout 2007. Whether the ferris wheel will be a permanent structure after Visit Malaysia Year 2007, I don’t know. If say it would be dismantled after 2007, with RM15 per ride, the business will either lose RM13 million or breakeven. This is not the point of my entry.

Remember Adnan’s brilliant idea of opening entertainment centres/discotheques until 5 in the morning just to provide more pleasure to tourists? I’m sure the majority patrons of such premises will be our local youths. More Malaysian drunks on the street early in the morning. This is also not the point of my entry.

I read an article on the BBC, “Incidents may mar Malaysia’s tourism bid”. It’s about black tourists being harassed by the Royal Malaysian Police just because they’re black. Black oppression in Malaysia? Lucky Zainal Abidin Hassan.

Welcome to Malaysia, people of the world!

Yesterday was my personal quest for inner solidarity. I took train rides around Kuala Lumpur, searching for some inner solidarity items.

At an almost well-known music store in Pertama Complex, I asked the hippiest, MTV influenced, trendy looking employee for the latest cd of the band Rivermaya. He asked me if it’s a local or an international band. I told him that Rivermaya was from the Philippines. With an arrogant look, he replied, “I’m sorry bro, we only sell rock stuff.”

Assuming that I know what the guy was assuming about me, do I look like I enjoy listening to the sensation of Kutiyapi rhythm in my past times?

At least I got new pair of sneakers!