Wednesday, November 28, 2007

i should tell you

I just realized that I just picked a bad habit.

You see, the ideal thing to do after carefully composing an SMS so that it won't exceed 160 characters is press the send button, select the number to send, and then press the confirm button.

After this routine is done, my cell will return to the composing window as if I was still composing the message. But unluckily I have two other habits that made the current state of the screen ambiguous.

1. I delete delivery reports immediately.

2. I like to re-read what I just sent out. In this case, I have to go back to the composing window.

The problem is, sometimes I leave my phone BEFORE I press the send button just because I thought I hadn't finished composing OR I leave my phone just like that AFTER I re-read my freshly composed message. By then, I don't know whether the message I was reading was already sent.

For those of you who sometimes received double identical message from me, one a while after the other, now you know why.

Or maybe sometimes I just can't wait any longer for a reply but too cheap to call.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

about a four-letter-word titled book that i'm currently reading

Michael Crichton's latest book titled Next is still as compelling as ever and (for an intrigued mind like mine) still sparks a "Really?". I haven't finished reading it. But I can already say that it is more boring than its predecessors, like Prey or Timeline. Perhaps will be far less controversial than State of Fear.

Boring? Well, I mean, I, for one, expected that halfway through the book we will learn more about the people involved with the issues and how the problems materialize before their eyes. Next, however, continues to introduce new minor characters that made me confused. It's almost often I said to myself, OK, who are the main characters again?

Right now, I, third-quarter-way through the book, don't really care anymore how the story will end for the characters.

But anyway, what drives me to write this post is the passage I read in page 273.

"Wait a minute. Height isn't genetic?"

"For individuals, yes. If you're taller than your friend, it's probably because your parents are taller. But for populations, height is a function of environment. In the last fifty years, Europeans have grown an inch every decade. So have the Japanese. That's too fast for a genetic change. It's entirely an effect of environment - better prenatal care, nutrition, health care, and so on. Americans, by the way, haven't grown at all in this period. They've shrunk slightly, possibly because of poor prenatal care and junk food diets. The point is that the actual relationship of genes and environment is very complicated. Scientists don't yet have a good understanding of how genes work. In fact, there's no general agreement about what a gene is."

With all due respect to my parents', my older sister's, and my own generation, that kinda a validation for her, one of her friends, and me, who think that there are more cute Indonesians nowadays than there were before.

Seriously. Look at people at the malls nowadays.

Friday, November 16, 2007

today's one liner (was supposed to be the title, but there isn't enough room and to somewhat end the trend of long titles)

I still can't quite figure it out why after such great pun-ish titles like A Long Way Down, How to be Good, and (of course!) High Fidelity or The Polysyllabic Spree, the latest novel from Nick Hornby was titled a simple search-engine-unfriendly Slam.

PS: Can't wait to read it.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

one minute silence mourning the departure of Djokovic from the 2007 Masters Cup

09:59 AM - [...]

10:00 AM - I seriously envy everyone with StarSports or Eurosport or whatever like those at their home.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

i was tied up in sorrow, lost in my soul at

The test:

What's Behind Your Emotions?, which is free until November 18th.

The questions:

It's very tempting to answer with that word, innit?

The result:

Yeah. It's true. So true. See? I used "true" as the adjective for the result.

The report:

I kept waiting to read the sentence that says, "I Feel Pretty should have been your theme of life." [Barney Stinson-ly] Please. (click picture to have a better look)

Saturday, November 10, 2007

i ain't romantic fool

All I did was using the best of the right side of my little grey cells and wrote

Apt xx04
I hope the rain won't pour
Will you be waiting at the door
with a towel and nothing more?

And they said I was a romantic fool.

Seriously? You wanna see romantic? Don't make me romantic. You wouldn't like me when I'm romantic.

On that note, it's Saturday. Grr..

Friday, November 09, 2007

to run or not to run (or no, it will still take a freaking long time for me to get over this already overused Hamlet thingy, so shut up)

Since 1999 (I remember it clearly because at that time I was wearing a red ribbon on my right collar, only to be asked by an ignorant lab partner, "Is it someone's birthday? Why are you wearing a ribbon?" Yeah, he got lucky I didn't go home and change to the "I'm with stupid" T-shirt.), there is always a mark in my calendar on December 1st.

This year that mark can even be bigger and bolder because yesterday I got the invitation to join a Stop AIDS! Start Running - 10K Run & 5K Walk 2007 (click picture to see whole flyer).

There is only one problem: I couldn't really say right away whether I would run.

Not to run: despite my skinny build and all those physical activities, (Mel, get this) I have low endurance when it comes to running.

To run: I know, endurance, schmendurance. It can be built and trained anyway.

Not to run: But training for a 5K means introducing a large amount of cardio in my workout regime.

To run: It's a good training anyway. Not only physically, but one can also train one's discipline and commitment.

Not to run: That amount of cardio can easily destroy my bulking-up keeping-the-weight-on program.

To run: Bulking up is so 1990's anyway.

Not to run: Based on an edition of Fitness RX that I have, the crash course for a 5K takes 6 (damn, six!) weeks to complete, with some prerequisites that I don't know if I have, when I only have 3 weeks or perhaps less, and the run is 10K anyway.

To run: This could be my The Mr. Bowmont.

Maybe I should stop weighing stuff and start looking for a running mate.

PS: Which will be the better running soundtrack actually? Whitney Houston's Run to You, or Bee Gees' Run to Me? And nah, the theme from Chariots of Fire is far overused.

PPS: Nah, I wasn't inspired by the alleged publicity stunt from Mrs. Cruise.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

i'll cover you

Once in a while, not too often though, there were times, like last weekend, when I met someone on a par with me on many levels. This someone specifically was on a par with my pop culture knowledge and musicals.

After he confessed his obsession on some things, he asked me what I was obsessed with. I said, "Musical theater. Clearly, since I spent the whole SATURDAY NIGHT staying in and not sleeping listening to some of them and having marathon on my DVD." Suddenly he sang a number from Les Misérables, which luckily I kinda know every word, since it is the music of the people who will not be slaves again.

Then he asked me, "Have you ever watched Rent?" I informed him that Rent was actually one of the musicals (movie, this time) that I marathon-ly watched Saturday night. Without any cue, he sang, "Live in my house / I'll be your shelter / Just pay me back / with 1000 kisses." I replied with ...

"Shit. I know what that song is, I don't know the next line is, I don't know how to sing it. Damn!"

Rent - I'll Cover YouAnd later on that night, as we approached that vile franchise that starts to take over the world, I said sang, unfortunately off key, "I should tell you / I should tell you [that I prefer not to have a drink in that place that shouldn't be named]" Of course I got the appropriate reply, which was, "I should tell you / I should tell you."

I was too embarrassed to sing it off key and stick with my inability of continuing the previous number. So. With God (and the collection of my pirated musicals) on my side, I know that I am chosen to do one thing and one thing only this Thursday.

Learn how to cover songs from Rent. My repertoire will be:
  • Light My Candle
  • Another Day
  • I Should Tell You
  • Take Me or Leave Me
  • Without You
And of course both versions of I'll Cover You. So had there been a next time, I could reply with, "Be my lover / and I'll cover you."

Well, maybe not "lover" lover though.

Monday, November 05, 2007

climb every counting

I was hanging on to my dear life at least six meters above ground only using all fingers that I have but both of the thumbs. It had stopped raining. The wind was cool. But intimidating. My slippery right shoe try to hold on to a very narrow, jagged, protrusion. My left hand was getting sore. "I can't [hold on]!" I yelled to myself. There were shouting that I understood from down there, but I just couldn't really process them. "Let go of your left foot! Reach the one on your knee!" were only two of other yelling. It sounded a bit panicky. With the last "I can't!", this time it meant I could not reach it, I let go. And fell.

The failure, third time in a row, started to sink in as I was hanging there, six meters mid-air. On the way down, I started to see that damn slippery boulder that could cost me my life. When my feet was on the ground, the yelling voices turned to a softer tone encouraging, "That's OK. You'll make it next time. Yeah, wall climbing isn't as easy as it looks."

Damn right it isn't.

When I got to the climbing area, I had a difficulty approaching the wall with humility. First, I climbed the jambu tree in front of my house daily. I got to the highest branch. Second, I think I have a better-than-average upper body strength. I can do koundinyasana 2, sirsasana, bakasana, astavakrasana and parsva bakasana for a full five breath on a good day. Third, I had strong legs.

I didn't think that it was gonna be easy. I was just fully prepared.

On the first three levels, which I insisted that I tried to conquer these first to brush up my ego, I was doing fine. Despite having zero hours of sleeping on the night before, I got to the top. I was advised to take a break and learn how to do bouldering, moving horizontally using grips which comprises fifty percent of what climbing is all about, before move on to the most difficult one.

Bouldering helps me a lot to learn that most of the time you do have to do series of maneuvers like throwing your body to the sides or quickly change your leaning foot, or reaching for a grip. It was the first time that I realize that I had longer limbs than I want them to be and despite the countless yoga (and, psst don't tell anyone, but in-front-of-a-mirror dancing) sessions, it is still difficult to tell your body to get to a certain position.

This can not get to a certain position is the reason I fell.

"It's like dancing." one of the instructors said. "You have to take your time. Just follow the counting. There are times that you need to go fast there are times when you need to take things slowly." he continued. "You, take things too abruptly. Far too rushed. Just stay cool. Left hand up. Right hand up. Left foot up. Right foot up. Right hand up. Right foot up. And so on."

On the last try, I tried to emulate this take your time philosophy. And surprisingly, I got to higher grips than the previous attempts. However, this time, my forearms were spent, my fingers were aching, and I know that there will be a next time when I am much more prepared and will be back to conquer the level six wall anyway, so I let go.

In the end of the session, aching fingers and all, I thanked the instructors who invited me to come again and the only reply that I can think of was, "Of course!" I have a feeling it even came out an octave too high for I was too excited.

On the ride home, I told my climbing partner that I must have looked really awkward trying to utilize my legs the way I did the whole night. He begged to differ. Well before anyone sees any picture, he replied (and I'm not paraphrasing), "I think you looked cute as a button up there."

Just those words made me determined to climb again.

Wanna try?

Panjat Dinding Pondok Indah Mal
Mal Pondok Indah 1
Jalan Arteri Pondok Indah
South Jakarta

Sunday, November 04, 2007

the terracota warriors

  • Roger Federer
  • Rafael Nadal
  • Novak Djokovic
  • Nikolay Davydenko
  • Andy Roddick
  • David Ferrer
  • Fernando Gonzales
  • Richard Gasquet

Three Two Spaniards (Update: didn't realize that Gonzales is Chilean). Hmm. My money is on Nadal. Vamos! Djokovic is a serious contender. I would like to see his and Ferrer's game. I would try my best not to bash, what's his name? Ah yeah. Roddick.


Saturday, November 03, 2007

towards Survivor: All-Stars 2 part 3

Following up (again) what I have written part 1 and part 2, and realizing the fact that season 16 will indeed be an All-Star edition, it's only fair if I finish this long due entry.

Let's pick up where we left before.

Survivor: Panama - Exile Island

The 12th installment of Survivor was actually the third Survivor shot in Panama. However, what made it unique is the fact that the castaways were initially divided into four tribes: younger men, younger women, older men, and older women. Through survivorian true testaments, the final four was surprisingly comprised of one member from each original tribes.

Memorable Castaways.

Terry Deitz

Terry was determined to dominate this season Survivor. He was successful in doing it physically by winning five individual immunity challenges consecutively. Mentally, he was actively trying to shuffle the game only to find his plans fail again and again. He also found the hidden immunity idol buried in Exile Island that kept him safe until final four. On one point of the game, he tried to lure a member of the opposing alliance to jump ship by giving up the hidden immunity idol. The move was considered to be the best strategic move in Survivor that never happened.

Cirie Fields

Cirie, everybody's darling. It was amazing seeing Cirie and Terry in this season. For these two players are each other's opposite and worst enemy. Cirie is definitely one of the weakest contestant ever when it comes to physical strength. But she is the only one who's smart enough to do strategic maneuvers in the course of the game. There are some points in the game where Terry tried to gain control by shifting numbers into his side. Almost every time Cirie came to dismantle Terry's plan. In one sentence, everything that Terry is, Cirie isn't.

Survivor: Cook Islands

This season was a risky one. First, the castaways were divided based on race. Four tribes were conceived: Asian American, African American, Hispanic American, and Caucasian American. Second, most of the castaways were actually recruited rather than selected via audition tapes. However, Survivor: Cook Islands turned out to be one of the best seasons of Survivor to date. For me personally, the game play, the twists and the conclusion was very entertaining to watch.

Memorable Castaways.

Ozzy Lusth

The runner-up from this season, Ozzy, was a dominating force in challenges. Candice, a fellow competitor, once described him as "half animal, half man, part fish, part monkey, part lord knows what." That pretty much sums up his performance in challenges. Not only that, Ozzy was also a strategic and loyal player, which is proven to be a great asset to his alliance.

Parvati Shallow

In the first episodes of Survivor: Cook Islands, I honestly thought Parvati was there solely to be one of the eye candies of the season. It turns out, that Parvati was a force to be reckoned with. She was one of the strongest female competitor in Survivor history. Her demise was the fact that she was in a bad alliance. She needs another chance and perhaps more spotlight this time.

Survivor: Fiji

Overall, Survivor: Fiji is kinda boring to be honest with you. For me, this season was memorable for one thing only. The ugliest final tribal council to date. If you remember the rat-and-snake speech by Susan in the first season, try imagining it came out of each and every jury's mouth. It was gruelly disturbing.

Memorable Castaways.

Yau Man Chan

Just watch the season. He's definitely an all-star worthy. One of the best players ever to play Survivor. The producers are absolutely losing their minds if they decided to do an all-star without Yau Man.

Michelle Yi

Michelle is one of the key players responsible for the success of the eventual winner of the season. Earl Cole, the winner of Survivor: Fiji, had never watched Survivor before. Eventhough Yau Man who was the one who approached Earl to make an alliance of two and later on recruited Michelle, she was actually the one who explained to Earl how the game should be (or is usually) played. Besides she had one of the best Survivor moments on episode 7.

So far, I have 7 female contestants and 9 male. It means there's still rooms for Survivor: China contestants.

As a backup, also memorable:
  • Scout, Eliza and Julie from Vanuatu
  • Coby from Palau
  • Brian, Cindy and Judd from Guatemala
  • Becky and Candice from Cook Islands

Now I can sleep well and see the spoiler.