Category Archives: Hodge-podge

Anything about anything

I LOVE BLACK

(Image Credit: wallchan.com)
(Image Credit: wallchan.com)

I love black

You know why? When something looks black, that means it’s the best absorb-er of light, yet it’s also the best emitter.  This is the reason why black is associated with calm, firm, but powerful and influential. I love black because it symbolizes strength and manful. When I wear black I often feel more confident and powerful. I walk taller and feel stronger (although I am physically small).

One interesting fact is that black is really not a color. It’s just an expression of any visual impression experienced when no visible light reaches the eyes. Remember when you’re in a darkness, that’s how visual impression of black comes.

(Orbiting alone in Jupiter, June 2012)

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Delicious stir-fry prawn

I prepare my meal usually using instant ingredients. Instant noodles, making rice with a rice cooker, chicken with instant seasoning, or anything in packages and ready to make within a few minutes.

Then, yesterday evening, all of a sudden, I wanted to cook something different and not instant for dinner. I wanted something fresh, spicy and fishy but simple. Thinking on what kind of food I was going to make, my mind went to prawn. Yes, prawn. I really like prawn and it’s been a long time I didn’t eat prawn.

Continue reading Delicious stir-fry prawn

WPAP? Sorry, I give up

Finally, after long time left untouched, I decided to give up on WPAP working.

Do you know WPAP? It’s an original pop art style from Indonesia. WPAP stands for Wedha’s Pop Art Portraits.  This art genre was developed by Wedha Abdul Rashid, a contemporary Indonesian artist.

WPAP is a style of portrait illustration. The main character is domination of vertical/horizontal/diagonal straight line with strong unusual color filling plane shapes. Portrait figure is composed from strong mosaic shapes without gradation color and curvy line. If you want to know further, just explore the website of wpap community. Here is the link http://wpapcommunity.com/wpap/index.php?view=category&catid=8&option=com_joomgallery&Itemid=29#axzz1nDHA0Wsj

I admit that WPAP is difficult for me. You can see my work below, and it is just bad. I ruined my own self-portrait. Even, somehow it breaks against WPAP’s basic rules. There shouldn’t be any gradation or realist color and curvy shape. I gave up to continue working on this “project”.

When you just see a WPAP’s masterpiece, it looks easy to make. Yet, I found it’s difficult, really, at least for me. Perhaps, the fact that I still don’t have a WPAP’s feeling makes WPAP work is just hard.

There two main steps for making WPAP. First, you need to do faceting. After you decide a portrait you’d like to make a WPAP, then you draw shapes in different forms to compose figure mimicking the portrait. Finish faceting? Then, the second step is coloring. You fill the shapes you’ve made with non-realist color.

If you are interested or curious, visit the website above, and try to make your own WPAP!

(Orbit Jupiter, Feb 2012)

Distance does Matter

It’s been 18 months since I’ve been away from my wife (and my son). We’ve been living apart. I’m in the Netherlands and they are in Indonesia. How far are we separated? It’s about 15 hours direct flight and their time zone is 6 hours earlier than mine. Sounds like time and space is separating us. Indeed, we’re separated, timely and geographically speaking.

Don’t think that our marriage is broken. In fact, we’re still in a very good relationship. I love her and (I know) she loves me too. I feel like our love is growing bigger and bigger over time. We never have any quarrel. Only few times have we argued, but that was not a big deal. I mean, there were just differences of opinion about some stuffs, which I believe it is normal. I think “discussion” is a better word to call that moment.

We’ve been keeping our long distance love for a relatively long time. Some people just think that we’re crazy. They are wondering how we can maintain our love or even make it grows bigger and bigger. On the contrary, other ones might say something like “distance doesn’t really matter if you really love the person…”. Well, that’s true. But speaking for myself, it’s not that simple (if you think it’s simple).

I have to say, it’s really difficult actually (but we make it). Distance does matter. It is not only about how to deal with loneliness and the feeling of missing family (note that I also have a 29 month-old baby boy), but also about being patience and to keep the spirit up for a long time.

First, you have to have a strong motivation/goal why you need to live apart. Better future plan, make a living, or whatever, you must have the motivation. It can be anything but selfish motivation. So, your partner must be involved in the plan. This is important because at some point, you’ll have moments with bad mood, feeling down or tired of being apart. When that moments come to you, just remember the motivation why you’re doing that. Your partner may also support you as she/he is involved in the plan.

Secondly, you really need to put extra efforts on being faithful. People tend to be unfaithful when there is distance between them and their loved one. It’s natural to find yourself attracted to others, even people other than your spouse. But don’t get yourself into any situation where there is a risk of cheating. However, being faithful would help nothing if there is no trust between both of you. Faithful and trust are like two sides of a coin. They have to be always together and prevalent to keep your long distance relationship doing fine.

Furthermore, faithful and trust are not enough. What is also important is that you have to always keep in touch with your spouse in any situation. Share your feeling, your situation, anything about yourself but don’t forget to be a good listener. Each of you should be able to allocate time dedicated for talking with each other. Intense communication makes both of you are emotionally connected, although you’re physically apart. Nowadays, technology really helps to communicate and there are many choices; phone call, SMS, chatting, skype, messenger, e-mail, and etc., unless you are in a remote island, far from civilization and technology.

Those are three important basic points (motivation, faithful-trust and communication) needed for maintaining your long distance relationship. Those should be the framework from which both of you can develop your own practical steps to deal with any situations related to a long distance relationship (i.e loneliness, feeling of missing, etc).

(Eagle flies alone, Feb.2012, Marbee Lab).

Rain

As usual, it’s rainy all day long in Groningen. No sun, gloomy. Even worse, strong wind brings chilly temperature.

In this situation, I can see two types of people’s attitudes. The first is the ones who are complaining. When they got to do something outside, and suddenly rain comes, then things don’t go well. Complaining is the first thing spontaneously coming up.

The second is the ones who are, instead of whining, being grateful. In contrast with the first type, they can enjoy the situation. Naturally, they don’t like the situation as well, however they cannot change it. So, what they do is simply changing their attitude, replacing complaining with gratitude.

Complaining or gratitude is just ways of seeing the world. It’s like a rhetoric question, “Is the glass half empty or half full?”  And the answers depend on what you intend to do. You can either answer “half empty” or “half full”. Both can either mean optimistic or pessimistic.

After all, it’s better to be grateful and optimistic, isn’t it?

(Sambil nunggu hujan reda, Januari 2012)

The Road Not Taken

(by Robert Frost, from Mountain Interval, 1916)

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Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.

————————————————

This poem is by Robert Frost, published in 1916 in the collection of Mountain Interval. It consits of four stanzas of five lines and the rhyme is ABAAB. 

It is very narrative. The story starts when a traveler stood at a fork of the road in the wood. The road split into two ways (one goes one way, the other goes a different way). It took a long time for him to decide which road he should take. He looked at the the first road, yet he could not see the end of the road as it bent curvy into the horizon.  

Then, he decided to take the second one as it looked more deserving for him to walk by. Although, both roads were equally worn down by people walking down them and equally overlaid by un-trodden leaves. However, he walked by on the second road anyway, telling himself  that someday in the future he will go for walking down on the first road. Yet he knew, that it will be impossible for him to have the opportunity to do so.  In the future, he will reminisce the decision he made by saying, he took the less-traveled road and that made a big change in his life (?). 

I like this poem. Perhaps, it is because the meaning that can express our feeling. Though, we may have different opinion on the poem’s meaning. Speaking for myself, it tells us that at some  point we would face the same situation. We often face dilemma in which a difficult choice has to be made between two or more alternatives. Making it complicated is that the alternatives are sometimes equally desirable, or even equally undesirable. Even worse, we do not know how it is going to be before we make the actual decision. Still, we have to decide anyway, and we are free to choose.

One important thing we should know is that there is no “Wrong Path” or “Right Path”. Both have their own consequences, this is the nature of decision. Perhaps, both decisions would make big differences in our life but in a a different way. Once a decision has been made, whatever it is, never go back. 

(Menunggu hasil sequencing di MarBee Lab, 20 January 2012)