Archive | October 2004

Losing Sleep Over Something

Lately I have been losing a lot of sleep… my biological clock is totally out of whack. Sleepy hours come when they’re not supposed to, and when there’s nothing else to do but sleep, … I don’t. I play Need For Speed all night long… not to mention, every morning I have to wake up at 3 am for sahur. Maybe there are some things that are hanging in my head (or my heart, for that matter) that’s keeping the adrenaline going, and keeping me awake at the most odd of hours…

Oh well, nothing else to do than just go through with it.

The Trip To Bogor

Yesterday, me, Coki, and Tanti were planning to go to Bogor, to meet up with Sena, for a kind of work meeting; talking more thoroughly about our project collaborations. The plan was for us to go to Bogor just in time for fast break, so we planned to get together at about 3 pm at Citos.

Before, I had to go to the old office in the morning since there were a few people planning to get some stuff from the office; so I had to stand by until all the appointments came. So, off went one of the aircons, one small sofa, one chair, one Pentium III CPU, and one fax machine. Plus a lot of sweat; since the electricity unit had been shut down, I couldn’t turn on the aircon (or anything else for that matter) and by 1 pm, when I reached home, I was already feeling really thirsty. So, awaitin 3 pm, I just slept (as the night before, I didn’t get much sleep because I watched Starsky & Hutch way into the night…) and at 2 pm started to get ready to pick up Tanti and head for Citos.

When finally we were at Citos to rendevouz with Coki, apparently Tanti wasn’t feeling very well, something about her blood sugar going down, so she had to end her fast and get a super-carbohydrate drink (when I was telling her she should get more glucose)… So, when Coki picked us up, Tanti was still a bit weezy, and was thinking of going home, not joining us to Bogor. Before that though, Coki had to go to Ines’ house for something, so we tagged along, and Tanti finally got proper glucose there.

After, we picked up Coki’s girlfriend, Sarah and met up at the gas station with Rama and Ines to finally go to Bogor, after much delay… we eventually had to break fast at the gas station, and we all bought burgers at the AM PM store (one of those 24-hour convenience stores, with overpriced snacks)…

Reaching Bogor, we headed to the place where Sena said to meet, a place called Cafe Mangiare (pronounced mun-jah-ray, whatever that means) where he was also meeting his former high school classmates. So we all sat down and ordered dinner… with little success. Not that the food didn’t reach us or anything, but the food was absolutely horrid, and in incomprehensible portions! I only ordered french fries and ommelette, and that didn’t work out either. I took my chances with Sarah’s fried rice, since she was uncapable of finishing it, had it wrapped up for sahur.

Sena, Coki and me had a small meeting after dinner to discuss current affairs, do determine where we were going for at least the next 3 months; we decided not top pursue setting up a company just yet, and to just add on to our portfolio first. In light of new situations with me and Coki, we all agreed that this was the best course of action, and we would reevaluate our work in about 3 months’ time.

At 9 pm, we took of right back to Jakarta again, because we were going to catch the midnight airing of Sky Captain and The World OF Tomorrow at Pondok Indah Mall. Tanti was already really tired, so she went off there and took a taxi home (it was really cutting it tight, since the airing was at 10 pm!). The movie eventually started at about 10.20 pm, so we weren’t late…

The movie itself was okay, comic-book and movie buffs would of loved its homage to old-style 30’s styling and coloring, robots, machines and all… but the even story, in its simplicity, was a perhaps unintentional homage to movies of the 30s-40s era… so the audience spent a portion of the movie laughing at ‘unnecessary’ scenes (there were a lot of really lame scenes, but in hindsight, typical of movies of that era)… all said, I was very entertained by the movie, although I would be cautious in recommending the movie to anybody else…

Phone+PDA, Smartphone, PDAPhone, or what?

Ok, since I joined this new office, I have not been able to download my personal emails to my computer. Other than standard free web-based email, I also have a paid POP3 email account I frequently use, and have been downloading to my office computer at my former office. Now, as the policy goes here, you cannot access any other POP3 accounts other than the office account, and that’s through Exchange, not direct communication with the email servers (where you have to input the POP3 server and SMTP server addresses for account setup). Now what happened is, I have hundreds of emails in my personal account that I have trouble opening, since connections other than my now-defunct CDMA phone or a broadband office connection tend to time out while contacting the server. So… there have been stuff I have not been able to do, since I depend on the POP3 account for a lot of stuff.. for instance, a routine translation project got held up for 2 weeks or so; luckily the company that gave the project to me also sends to one of my web mail accounts, so I have been able to pick up the pace again. But I’d still need constant access to that email account if I am to continue doing other stuff…

Since lately it has started being impractical to have a Bluetooth-enabled phone to become a modem for either my PDA or my computer, because sometimes the connection breaks off (I still don’t know whether if it is caused by bad GRPS signal reception or faulty Bluetooth), I have begun thinking about changing my hardware to better suit my changing needs. The choices are:

1). upgrade the T610 to a K700i or something, and the PDA to one with built-in Bluetooth and a mail program capable of reading HTML (my current one cannot);

2). just upgrade the PDA, built-in Bluetooth, maybe a camera as well;

3). Sell both the phone and PDA and get a smartphone, like the P900; or

4). Go for a PDAPhone, like the HP Ipaq 6300 or Treo 600.

Let’s compare the prices: if I let go of the T610, I would probably be able to sell it for Rp 1.3 million maximum; and the PDA, an ancient Palm m515, probably less than Rp 1 million. So, that would mean at least Rp 2 million as initial capital for future purchases (assuming, of course, I could sell both items quickly and at the same time, which is unlikely).

The K700i is currently priced at Rp 3 million, but I still think it’s an unnecessary upgrade unless my line of work starts requiring me to test master tones (ringtones which are actually cuts of the real sound recording). So probably, forget about selling the T610, I still like it anyway, and perhaps forget about selling the Palm m515 if I don’t want to sell it at a very very low price, so, forget about the Rp 2 million initial capital. Back to zero.

So the option is actually smartphone or PDA phone, where I’d have to let go of both of my former gadgets… and generally both classes of product are priced at least Rp 4 million, usually around the range of Rp 6 million.

Ok… now I’m starting to sweat. I don’t think I have the power to spend such money, not when there’s no direct benefit coming from the purchase (say, I can make at least Rp 6 million again after investing Rp 6 million for the new gadget)….

So I guess, I’ll have to find another way around…

After The Media Briefing

Whew! The first day of the media briefing is finally over. 4 sessions, with over than 40 medias invited (actual number that came was about 20). Boss did most of the talking, I supported by answering technical questions and showing off samples from the laptop, hehe… otherwise, it was damn hard not to get sleepy in the generously-airconned meeting room…

The reaction of the media was pretty receptive, considering that the information that we gave them was pretty new to them; and it gave a lot of insight for the industry in general.

And no, it doesn’t feel like the first day of school anymore…

Before The Media Briefing

Today, is another big day in my infant career… the office set up a media briefing (as opposed to a press conference) for various media to educate the market on what the industry is about and the current developments going on… so.. today, I’m in the office earlier, and I have my hair slicked back, tie, shirt tucked in, everything!

Feels like one of those ceremonies in the US where a kid at a certain age is officialy introduced to society.

Old Friends

Yestarday, after a relatively strange day at work (it began slow but the pace just increased by the hour), I was going to meet Nelly, Pitty and Chieq, three friends from my old workplace at Kafe Tenda Semanggi. Since my boss was also a friend of them (and we all did work at the same place not long ago), he tagged along, waiting for a dinner appointment at about 8 o’clock.

So there we were, old friends, gathering at the table, eating, drinking, updating each other on what we were up to now, trading gossip… It’s always a good feeling to gather around friends, especially if you haven’t met them for a while… (maybe i should rethink my non-involvement in the buka puasa thing for my classmates… we’ll see.)

Afterwards, I joined up with Asri to eat at Izzi Pizza, well… I only ate half the pizza, because I already ordered some food at Kafe Tenda Semanggi… Asri paid me her outstanding debt to me, hehe, when I covered the bookings for a couple of people when we went rafting last month. (That was last month, so you won’t find stories about it here, at least, not yet). Again, the discussion was lively and fun, a mix of everyday events and compulsory gossip, hehe…

On the way to Kafe Tenda Semanggi, Daniel (my boss) asked me, hey, since you’ve been single again, you’ve always had all sorts of activities coming home from work… and I said, well, most of the time, it’s better than going home on time to an empty room…

Fast Break

The Bahasa term for ‘fast break’ (no, not a basketball term), which is the time where we end our fast for the day, is ‘buka puasa’. C’mon, say it with me, boo-cuh poo-uh-suh, or something like that. When on Monday I had the fast break with Vira, at Blok M Plaza, yesterday it was with Tanti at Ambassador Mall, much nearer to the office, not to mention the multitudes of electronics, PDAs, cellphones, and DVDs that can be found there.

Now, I don’t know what the custom is in other Muslim majority countries, but in Indonesia, buka puasa is a big deal. It’s an integral part of socializing; during the duration of Ramadhan, you could get all sorts of invitations, official or personal, large party or small, for buka puasa bersama somewhere. Usually it is combined with a reunion of sorts with old friends, classmates, or ex co-workers, whatever… and the event itself is from the simple (people just meeting at a restaurant to eat) to the elaborate (asking a cleric to give preaches, and extended to Tarawih time); it has become such a tradition in Indonesia that even non-Muslims are invited to join, as it is a big deal and a required part of socialization. In other words, it just becomes another excuse to do what Indonesians do best, which is get together and eat. haha.

I have been having thoughts of organizing another buka puasa with my former college classmates, as I did last year, but it’s been a bit hectic for me the past few weeks to even discuss it with anybody, and I was kind of hoping that somebody else would step in the role of organizer this time. Well… apparently, to this date, nobody has, and I still don’t have the will to properly prepare something like this. I hear from Tanti that some are actually hoping that I would step in again; well, sure, I’ll help, but I don’t want to feel like I’m working alone again (although I did get help last time). So guys, anybody game? This time I’m purely support, not initiative, hehehe…

Maybe I’ll change my mind during the course of the week, but it’s already almost the middle of the fasting season, and no plans have been annouced. I talked it over with Tanti, maybe we’re gunning for November 6th for something, but we’ll see lah… maybe next year I’ll be back on the scene. All said, buka puasa is always a good opportunity to meet up with old friends…

So the highlight of the fasting season in Indonesia, for a lot of people, is not the fasting, not the Tarawih, but the buka puasa! hahaha…

Well, That Wasn’t So Bad, Was It?

Ok, note to self: conference calls are the same thing as group discussion. It’s just that you can’t see the other people of the group…

I prepped all the notes i could, wanting to make a good first impression, wanting to be able to present the current business at hand; but, i forgot the main goal of these things are: sharing. So, since i’m new, and business still has not been able to show much for itself yet here, all i talked about was myself, for a brief minute or so. Some people call it ‘the introduction’. I thought it was… unnecessary. haha. Well of course it’s necessary, how else would the others know me? And with all the others sharing their side of the business in their respective countries, i was able to grab a few ideas here and there, and refresh on old ideas i had forgotten about.

Needless to say, I sat idly during almost the entire duration of the conference, mostly taking notes, making sounds of acknowledgement or approval at the right moments, and basically be a good listener. It was just like being a student in class, listening to the lecturer blabber on about who knows what. Well, the conference call only takes once a month, and is still necessary anyway, just in case some information didn’t reach one another through regular channels.

Ok.. with that out of the way, and forward as the only way for me to go… I think I’m getting used to it here.

Waiting On The Line

Maybe I’m nervous. Maybe I’m scared shitless. Or maybe… I just feel I haven’t done anything.

The thing is, every 3rd Friday of every month, there’s a schedule of a big conference call for all the Asian offices, everybody calling in from everywhere… and at 2.30 pm today, it’s my first one! It feels like the 1st day of school all over again. I already felt that when it was the first day here… now, it feels like that again… all these hotshots and experts from all over, including the general manager for the Asia region, all would be listening to my every word, and I’m afraid I’ll screw up. I’m afraid that they’d go “Ok, who the hell hired this guy? He doesn’t know jack!!”

But on the other hand, I’m not really worried about that. Although I am a man who tends to worry about what others think of him, the feeling has been kind of watered down through the years anyway, and I think it better just to go ahead, and be prepared with what’s in my head. This is still just an internal conference; I’ve been in worse predicaments, I guess (like my interview at a rival company, hahaha…)…

To add to that, much of the work I want to follow up on depends on information I’m waiting from other people, and I can’t exactly move ahead until i get some sort of response, so I’ve just been tying up loose ends here and there, and waiting, brooding for the time of the conference call.

Now.. back to waiting…


I’m not sure why, but today, after staring at the screen for about 15 minutes, no words could come out, except these, stating the fact that I have nothing to say today. Nothing that wants to be told, nothing that is compelling me to write about. Just blank.

There are stories to tell, actually, stories I haven’t shared from days or ages ago, but… I think it has more to do with the feeling of… not wanting to type. A block either in my head or in my heart is preventing my fingers communicating what’s going on in my head…

So let’s leave that for now, and let this be the post of the day. Maybe later I can elaborate more.