Tuesday, 26 December 2017

Back from China!

Hi everyone,

I just got back from a one-week trip to China, covering Beijing, Shanghai and Nanjing. The trip, which started on December 17, was a business one - in fact it was semi diplomatic as I went with Foreign Policy Community of Indonesia (FPCI) China Foreign Policy (of which I'm a member), The Coordinating Minister of Politics, Law and Human Rights, The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and The Ministry of Trade.

We had seminars at Fudan University, Nanjing University, China Center for International Economic Exchanges (CCIEE) and China Institute of International Studies (CIIS), as well as visiting Yangshan Deepwater Port. In our leisure time, we went to Temple of Heaven and Nanjing Presidential Palace. We would have loved to go to the newly-opened biggest Starbucks in the world and the iconic Oriental Pearl Tower, both are in Shanghai, but our schedule was so tight there was no time to squeeze them in.

As this might be my last entry in 2017, I might as well conclude that even though 2017 wasn't as good as 2015, it's still better than the majority of my post-NZ years thanks to the two overseas trips I had this year. Here's to more overseas adventures in 2018!

Monday, 30 October 2017

A little explanation...

Hi guys.
I'm aware that attention has been given to my old blog lately, yes more than eight years after I moved to this current one. To satisfy your curiosity, yes my past writings haunt me. I've lost the password to my Pitas blog and even if I still had it, I wouldn't be able to log in anyway because Pitas is now on read-only mode. I have asked Andrew Smales, founder and owner of Pitas, to delete my blog and to date I have yet to receive a reply.

So there. It's not like I'm proud of my past ramblings and keep them online on purpose. I myself wish to do away with it, but the power to make it disappear is in the hands of Andrew Smales.

Apart from that, I'm alive and kicking. Just got back from Singapore for a long-overdue family reunion.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Another premonition (sort of) coming true

Alive and well, guys. Still in the same job. Just surviving for now, can't complain.

Remember an entry I posted on November 19 2016 about Moon Hyuna leaving Nine Muses and setting up her own label called Moongom House? I mused in that entry that Hyuna should bring together all the ex-members of Namyu under her agency.

Since her departure, Hyuna has released four singles including the very latest one on August 11 2017 with fellow ex Muse Euaerin (real name Lee Hyemin) called "Doong Doong", under Daynite Records. Now I can't prove that Daynite Records and Moongom House are one and the same, since some sources mention that Daynite Records is partially owned by the 30-year-old, but the fact that she's teaming up with Euaerin now sparks hope that she'll bring along more ex Muses on board. I personally hope it's gonna be Ryu Sera, whose music style post Nine Muses is actually starkly different from Hyuna's.

Celebrating freedom from uniform stage costumes and synchronized choreography...

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Shout out to someone!

Exactly 14 years ago in mid-2003, while still blogging on Pitas I received an e-mail from someone claiming to be half Japanese and half Caucasian and live in Australia. He introduced himself as Kevin Harten. He also sent me a picture.

We e-mailed each other for a short while. He said he religiously followed my entries, and even offered sympathy when I went through issues with some fellow Indonesian bloggers. Then suddenly he stopped writing me.

Around August of the same year (he'd already stopped contacting me by that time), I stumbled upon his picture on a website called hapas.com (RIP). His e-mail address used on that site was different from the one he used for our communication, and what was weirder was that he went by the name "Bryce" there. I remember telling him what I found, to which I received no reply.

So yeah, hi Bryce/Kevin Harten! Enjoy this blast from the past!

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Another dream...

Just when I was about to give up, you visited me in my dream.
You looked just as I remembered you, but seemed like you'd gained weight.
Just remember that whatever the future holds, you always have a soft spot in my heart.
And here's to the belated 15th anniversary of our friendship, I especially cherish the fact that we spent our late teens together, albeit miles apart.

Monday, 20 March 2017

My two cents on "Kong: Skull Island"

Hi hi everyone!
Just wanna let you know that I'm still alive and well. Actually planning to move to another host as I've been on Blogger almost eight years. I was on Pitas for six years so eight years on a blog provider is definitely way too long in my book.
So I just watched "Kong: Skull Island" yesterday and for those not in the know I have a penchant for stupid monster movies. I even watched that forgettable Dwayne Johnson and Vanessa Hudgens vehicle...
"Kong: Skull Island" won a favorable review from Time magazine, and nah I'm not going to talk about the latest Kong installment pays tribute to its 1933 predecessor by reprising a couple of iconic scenes such as the fight scene between Kong and a giant lizard during which Kong rips apart the lizard's mouth. Instead, I'm gonna talk about a certain character which, albeit visible, leaves audience wondering if this character serves any purpose whatsoever.
It's the only Asian character in the movie, simple called Miss San, played by Chinese actress Jing Tian.
So San is part of the expedition led by Monarch and the US army because of her expertise in marine biology. Throughout the movie, San is mostly silent. She probably only has a total of four lines, and when she says them you can't miss a slight accent...which makes you wonder about her background: she can't be American, nor can she be Chinese...The movie is set in 1973, the peak of Cultural Revolution so no Chinese could get out of the mainland. Or maybe the character is Taiwanese? If so, how the hell does she get into the expedition? At least the only Brit in the movie, James Conrad (Tom Hiddleston), has a background.
So I can officially argue that San is there to serve the current buzzword that is diversity amidst cries of white-washing that befall major, much-anticipated projects such as "Ghost in the Shell." Also, remember how everyone thought the 2016 Academy Awards was racist? Couple that with Donald Trump's presidential win, America needs to do all it can to make itself look cool again. She serves no other purpose.

At least this special feature gives an illusion that San matters at all.