Tag Archives: writing

Should You Drop Out School?

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Facebook feed is definitely a source of writing inspiration nowadays. Especially if you have different kind of people in your list — people from different cultural backgrounds, age group, jobs or expertise, etc, who love posting statuses, or sharing stories. Or in this particular day, someone from my list shared a video.

It is not just a video. It is a video from a TED talk. A boy. A teenage boy. Talking about how — according to him — school is making us less intelligent. I couldn’t post the video directly from facebook, so I went to youtube and found it there for you — obviously to make your lives so much easier.

You’re welcome.

 

There. What do you think?

Do you agree with what he said? That school makes us less intelligent? So, should we all just drop the education and stop going to school altogether — for the sake of creativity?

Or, you can start seeing the flaw in his argument — when he started contradicting himself about the meaning of success, and that there are different kind of intelligences? I let him off for that one, mainly because he is still young, and probably he didn’t get the chance to learn that in academic writing such flaws would be heavily scrutinised by the professors.

But of course… That’s not the problem.

The problem is… I agree with him to a certain degree.

I too was a “victim” of how school tried to shape us into something that we are not. I remember quite clearly what happened when I told my teacher that I wanted to go to Language Department, instead of Natural Science Department. I remembered that I was coerced to change my option, because I was “too smart” for Language Department.

Now? Now I am working with languages, and I love it. I still wish I took that Language Class. If I did, I might be better now in my German. Maybe I didn’t have to start from the very beginning. Maybe I would have got a basic knowledge of German or French… Who knows?

I also agree with him that there are different kind of intelligences. I too have witnessed so many of my friends who were considered as stupid, or slow has flourished after they graduated high school and took art and design route, or music, or business. Something that they didn’t learn at school at all.

But how about people who don’t have that “specialities”? How about people who are just the average? People who needs to get a basic level of education to get a job — to get money — to feed their family, etc.

What this boy said about “school makes us less intelligent” is not unfamiliar for me at all. I have heard the same argument over and over again, only at that time when I was younger it was “school doesn’t make us rich” or “school doesn’t guarantee our success“.

But.. success…

This is what I considered as the hole in this boy’s argument. He started impeccably when he said that people are unique because they have their own unique intelligences, but he forgot that we also have our own unique aspirations. For him success is having a flourished company, that makes a lot of money — that’s why he argued that he is better at managing a company than those who graduated from Harvard. For some people it is being a president, or an MP. For other… it is having a happy family.

For me, it is mastering 10 languages, and writing books.

So, if you ask me if you should drop out from school… well… you probably might.

 

 

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Superbyq 6th Anniversary

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I can’t believe it is April already. I means, Superbyq is now 6 years old. Hurrah!!!

If it is a human child — a girl, definitely. Superbyq is a girl. If this blog is a little girl, she would probably doing her homework as she has to go to school tomorrow. Or not? Tomorrow is Sunday, isn’t it?

Anyway. If it is a little girl, she would be in primary school. Probably second year already. Anyway… it makes me wonder how old it is the minimum age for a child to be sent to school in the UK. I think it is 5 year old is the age when a child is sent to Primary School.

6 years.

Really.

This is definitely the longest serious commitment I have ever made in my life. It is personal, and I have invested so much — material and immaterial.

I know that I should have dedicated more time for this blog, and I do feel bad that I haven’t. But I don’t want to feel bad today, as this is Superbyq’s birthday, and… we’re going to have something to drink tonight…

 

Prost!

 

Meine Fortschritte Deutsch zu Lernen

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Hallo

 

Ich heiße Bybyq. Ich lebe in Großbritannien mit meinem Mann (Ich liebe ihm). Wir leben in einer kleiner Wohnung. Unsere Stadt Norwich ist eine schöne Stadt. Es ist klein, aber hat es alles was wir brauchen.

Ich schreibe gerne. Ich mag auch kochen, stricken, und häkeln. Ich lese viele Bücher denn ich lese gerne. Ich mag jetzt Haruki Murakami, aber ich mag immer Agatha Christie.

Shit this is difficult.

Racist Or Not Racist…

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That’s the question…

Of course I am talking about one of Indonesian Ambassador who few days ago posted a tweet that is considered as racist. Well… Okay. He said “Cina” in his tweet.

And why is this a problem?

Some people don’t consider using the word “Cina” to refer to Chinese Indonesian as a racist comment. But, the word “Cina” is the equivalent of the N word in the USA. If it is said by an African American, it is fine (sort of), but when a White American said it… it is improper. Same with the C word in Indonesia.

It is historical. It is cultural. Lots of people haven’t gotten over it as it has a negative connotative for being used as a derogative term for minority group.

So… when someone with the position like this Mr. Ambassador said the C word in public space, with or without malice, it is considered as a political blunder. A huge one, if I must say.

But here’s the thing.

I, for once, am not a PC Police. I don’t go around the social media attacking people who made the slightest social or cultural faux pas. I don’t even care about political correctness if it is about telling facts. So, I am not going to follow the crowd and condemn this tweet. I consider this as a PR crisis. Told you many years ago that these politicians need to hire people like me to manage their bloody social media. But nobody listens *rolleyes*.

And what if it is not a PR crisis? What if it is not a political blunder? What if this tweet is not just a mistake, but a reflection of how racist this guy is? So what?

I can’t make someone to be not-racist. Nobody can make someone to be not-racist, and it is the same the other way around. Can you… if you are not a racist, be made racist? No.

There is a place inside your brain that nobody can touch. It is where you are truly free, to be yourself. There is no right and wrong about the thing in your head. And if you have a certain idea about something or someone, that is your perception based on your own experience, based on what you’ve heard or seen. There is no such thing as thought crime.

See…

Generalisation. Stereotyping. The kind of thing that you consider so bad is actually the way our brain work to simplify our lives. It is one of our basic instinct and survival tool. It is in the nature. It is been there to help us making sense of the world.

In the past mankind generalise animal as either prey or predator. That’s how they choose which animals they can eat and which one they should avoid. That’s survival. They classified plants to help them understanding the nature. Race, ethnicity… it is how we try to make sense of human’s uniqueness. It helps some people, to reduce the feeling of unknown.

This is humane. And this is what many PC polices don’t understand.

Some people just can’t help being racist. Especially in Indonesia where it is rooted, and where it is being taught from generation to generation. It has been drilled to people’s mind and being reinforced by radical groups. It is something that you can only hope will change slowly. It is not something that you can change overnight.

Heck.. we just start recognising this in Indonesia since 1998. We still have a long way to go.

Don’t get me wrong.

It does hurt when I read or listen to this kind of aggression. Micro or macro, it doesn’t matter. It still hurt no matter how much understanding you could give to these people. Sometimes even, I would retaliate, but most of the time, I’d rather write.

Like this.

Maybe today. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe, it could help people to understand too.

 

Prost!

Bybyq Had A Walk…

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Blogwalk…

The weather outside was not appealing enough for me to go out and physically walk. After all, I have not gone blogwalking for years now, and that’s probably I have not gained many blogging friends lately. Anyway, I stumbled upon this interesting blog, owned by a guy. I have not seen many blogs maintained by guys nowadays, so seeing one was definitely refreshing.

It was a nice, clean cut blog –which I like, since I don’t like blog with too many widgets that would confuse the shit out of visitors, no embeded video nor music — which is awesome, because there’s nothing more annoying than being forced to listen to something you do not particularly interested in, and still updated. Of course, written in Indonesian, with slight Raditya Dika’s Kambing Jantan humour, it has a lot of readers, and commentators. It was a very dynamic blog.

There was this other blog, written by a very young girl. I think I visited her blog a very long time ago. I was not sure why I did not end up talking or leaving comment at her blog, but when I read some of her articles, I knew why. This one is loud, abrasive, and it just sound… crass. I could not put my finger on it, but there is something that I do not feel fit about this other one. But of course, although she did not have as much comments as the male blogger I mentioned before, it seems that she has been writing for years too.

And also one particular blog that I visited, because I knew the owner — but have not talked to her for years (which is maybe a good idea). Apparently she has not yet changed much (in writing), still as literate as before, and now I think she developed interests in Korean beauty products too. Hmm… I noticed she is just getting even prettier than the last time I saw her. Oh nom nom.

Aaaaanyway…

Blogwalking made me think about my own blog.

I realised that most people that is still blogging today, has been blogging since the day before blogging was considered cool — and not cool again. They have changed. They evolved. As a human being, and also as a blogger. Somehow I feel proud that I have maintained my blog, and hoped that as a person, and as a blogger, I have grown up too.

Yes, I know Superbyq’s Birthday is still few weeks away, but I think this is just the perfect blog entry to celebrate superbyq’s 5 year anniversary.

I have a bottle of Bailey’s. You know what I am going to do next…

 

Cheers x

Migrating to Blogger?

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I have been thinking about it for awhile now. Superbyq.com will be 5 years next month and I realised that I have not yet used this blog maximally. Or at least, as much as I wanted to. Keep maintaining this blog feels like contraproductive right now, but I love this blog, and love wordpress. 

I could have moved this blog to wordpress.com instead but it does not give as much freedom as blogger does. But blogger’s lack of mobility makes it difficult for me to maintain from my phone. Having these two options in mind gives me a big dilemma. Should I? Should I not?

So today, I decided to browse a little bit more about migrating my blog to a free blogging platform. Apparently it is very much possible to export the whole blog to blogspot as well as to wordpress.com. How enticing, how tempting. It really makes me think now. 

But, am I ready to lose the convenient and the freedom self hosted blog has offered me for this last 5 years? I seriously considered log in to an admin page from superbyq.com is very comforting. It seems like having my own house, walking through my own door. Not renting an apartment, walking through blogger.com or wordpress.com. They could delete my blog anytime they want, you know? They did it before, and I know they could do it again in the future…

But of course I need to be sensible too. Paying for both domain name and hosting is too much for me right now. I have too many hobbies and too little income. So migrating to a free blogging platform needs to be seriously considered.

I don’t really want to ask Mr. Fix-It foe his opinion about this. First of all, he would offer me to pay the blog maintenance, knowing how important this blog is for me. That would, of course, make me feel even worse. And second of all, this is my blog. My personal life, and Mr. Fix-It hasn’t even been here much. So, why now the maintenance of this blog should be his problem?

I need yo give some thought about it, while maybe finding out when the next time I need to extend the hosting service. I’ll buy myself some times before a decision. 

Oh Dear

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I haven’t posted anything since three months ago? Well, almost… but still, it’s unacceptable, and embarrassing.

So, first of all. I am writing in English again.

Yes, that’s the first embarrassing thing I must admit. I have been trying to post something in Bahasa Indonesia for the last few days, but apparently my brain cannot compose anything in my mother language. I could write few sentences, or paragraphs at most, but then I stuck. No story came up, and finally I gave up.

In times like this, I felt like I am losing my identity, and that’s rather scary to admit. It made my mood swing for the last few weeks, especially when Chinese New Year was approaching. So I impulsively decided that going to CNY celebration held by the Indonesian Society might be able to reconnect me to my root, or at least make me feel better, even temporarily.

It did not work. The so called party was probably the most awkward gathering events I have ever gone to. Luckily, Mr. Fix-it was with me, and he somehow saved the situation from being overly awkward. And he somehow was my way out too. I am so happy that he’s around in this kind of situation.

This is probably the first after so many years, I wanted to go home and could not. Not only because I have just been home few months ago, but also that in the next few months I will be back to Indonesia. This time is for my sister’s wedding. Gee, it would take me a whole blog entry to talk about her wedding.

Anyway, I am here again now. Hopefully I could post more regularly than before. Shame that I cannot keep my promise to blog in Bahasa Indonesia, and I sincerely apologise for that. However, I am proudly tell you that Mr. Fix-It has developed an interest in Bahasa Indonesia, so now I am teaching him few words and phrases to help him interact with my family for our next visit to Indonesia.

Now he could not only ask for coffee and milk, but also can confidently thank people, and giving my grandmother compliments about her tasty cooking. He also decided to learn the most mushy love expression, knowing that in Indonesia we don’t usually express our feelings in public, just to embarrass me. How thoughtful.

Actually, I found his fascination in learning Bahasa Indonesia quite comforting. Somehow teaching him Bahasa Indonesia has helped me to keep in touch with my root. It is not the same with interacting with fellow Indonesians, but I am not good around these people from Indonesian Society anyway. It was just weird.

Maybe I am just getting old. Which should be fine as it means I am getting closer to my lifetime goal: being a cougar.

Maybe I should start exercising. I don’t want to be a fat cougar.

Oh dear, I have started talking bollocks, it means I need to stop typing right now. See you soon, live long and prosper.

The Byq Life

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Ya ampun ya ampun ya ampun…

Rencananya sih makin rajin ngeblog, tapi ternyata sebulan lebih belum ngepost apa-apa. Maap…

Minta maap sama siapa? Kaya ada yang baca aja blognya?

Eniwei…

Sejak balik dari Indonesia tanggal 7 kemarin, saya belum selesai-selesai kena penyakit. Pilek selesai, tiba-tiba batuk menyerang. Baru selesai batuk, lalu berlanjut ke radang tenggorokan selama beberapa hari. Sampai akhirnya pilek datang lagi. Saya bahkan sudah tiga minggu ini tidak datang ke acara knit and natter di perpustakaan kota 😦

Apa kabarnya ya nenek-nenek itu?

Oh ya, saya mau mengucapkan terima kasih kepada teman-teman yang sempat datang, atau sekedar menyampaikan ucapan selamat karena tidak bisa datang ke acara resepsi saya di Solo kemarin. Terima kasih banyak. Maaf kemarin saya tidak bisa menemani sepanjang acara karena bukan hanya ternyata tamu yang datang melebihi prakiraan, namun juga karena padatnya jadwal acara selama saya berada di Indonesia. Mudah-mudahan tahun depan saat saya balik lagi, kita bisa ketemuan di acara yang lebih santai.

Cerita tentang acaranya nanti saja, karena panjang :p Sekarang update dulu…

Kerjaan saya sehari-hari sekarang ini adalah sibuk job hunting, dan juga nyambi nulis product review buat duit ga seberapa buat jajan :(. Mending lah daripada nggak ngapa-ngapain. Saya juga nyambi jadi ibu rumah tangga, bersih-bersih, nyuci baju dan masak. Cuci piring sama bersihin WC urusan Mr. Fix-It.

Kangen punya pembantu?

Nggak terlalu. Mungkin karena rumah kami kecil, dan kami tinggal di sini cuma berdua, jadi nggak terlalu banyak yang harus dibersihkan. Dan juga, rasanya enak juga punya privasi. Seandainya pun saya mau berkeliaran di dalam rumah cuma pake beha sama kolor, tidak akan keihatan oleh pembantu.

Yang saya kangenin dari punya pembantu adalah ada yang bisa dimintain tolong buat belanja ke luar rumah. Maklum yah, di sini sudah mulai dingin. Mau keluar rumah harus pakai baju berlapis-lapis buat jalan sepuluh menit ke supermarket terdekat. Belum lagi kalau hujan. Mendingan duduk manis di rumah nonton tipi atau main komputer, sambil minum teh panas daripada keluar sana.

Ah…

Sudah hampir tahun baru lagi.

Saya baru sadar kemarin kalau itu berarti sudah hampir setahun pula saya dan Mr. Fix it menikah. Entah apakah kami masih dalam periode bulan madu atau apa, tapi rasanya cepat, hampir tidak terasa. And I am glad…

Sudah ah, saya mau mandi dulu sebelum udara mulai makin dingin. Ciao…

Akankah Blogging Jadi Trend (Lagi)?

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Pertanyaan saya itu muncul, tidak lain adalah karena mulai disebut-sebutnya blog milik putra bungsu presiden Republik Indonesia, Kaesang Pangarep di banyak media massa. Blog yang diberi nama Mister Kacang, yang diunggah di platform blogspot itu rupanya telah menarik banyak perhatian pengguna internet di Indonesia, bukan hanya karena blog itu milik putra orang nomer satu di Indonesia, tapi juga karena kontennya yang lucu.

Kaesang memang sudah beberapa lama terkenal dengan celoteh kocaknya di media Twitter sejak lama, tapi setelah akun twitternya ditutup untuk publik (hanya bisa diakses oleh user tertentu saja), blognya yang diberi judul Diary Anak Kampung itu pun menjadi target netizen selanjutnya. Jurnal digital yang sudah ada sejak 2011 (lebih muda dari superbyq) itu pun jadi populer mengikuti pergantian statusnya yang semula anak gubernur, menjadi anak presiden.

Tidak ada yang terlalu politis di tulisan-tulisan Kaesang. Kisahnya tidak jauh berbeda dengan apa yang dulu kita baca di Kambing Jantan milik Raditya Dika, yang sekarang tidak lagi terkenal sebagai blogger kocak, namun sebagai penulis dan stand up comedian. Cerita yang ditulis tidak jauh-jauh dari kehidupan anak muda jaman sekarang, lengkap dengan curhat-curhat yang dibumbui dengan self-deprecation joke, seperti mengatai dirinya sendiri berwajah ndeso.

Nah…

Kembali ke pertanyaan saya tadi, apakah popularitas Mister Kacang akan menyaingi Kambing Jantan? Tentu saja saya penasaran…

Kambing Jantan– terlepas dari apakah kita suka dengan humor ala Raditya Dika,telah menjadi tonggak sejarah per-bloggingan Indonesia. Atau setidaknya itulah yang saya rasakan. Blogger tidak lagi hanya sebagai platform curhat, tapi juga batu loncatan menjadi penulis betulan. Setelah Kambing Jantan, muncul pula blog-blog lain yang kemudian dibukukan seperti Naked Traveller, atau Sepoci Kopi. Bahkan Dewi Lestari, penulis buku kawakan yang sudah menerbitkan novel-novel berkualitas tidak ketinggalan kereta dengan memulai mempublish bukunya Perahu Kertas, bab demi bab di blog.

Tentu saja, berbeda dengan Kambing Jantan, Mister Kacang tidak diupdate secara reguler. Mungkin ada hubungannya dengan upaya untuk mengamankan keluarga presiden maka Kaesang tidak bisa seterbuka Dika dalam membeberkan detail kehidupan keluarganya. Tapi, entah kenapa Mister Kacang mengingatkan saya pada Kambing Jantan di masa jayanya dulu.

Laki-laki yang mengaku (atau merasa) tidak memiliki kelebihan secara fisik, curhat melalui tulisan di media digital, tidaklah lagi dianggap sebagai jomblo ngenes atau bahasa internasionalnya: forever alone. Sebagai celebrity blogger, mereka sekarang dimasukkan dalam kategori eligible bachelor dengan self deprecating humour yang menawan. Blogger tidak lagi dilabeli sebagai pecundang dunia nyata yang mencari fame di dunia online, tapi sebagai pribadi yang terbuka dan menarik, dan juga melek informasi dan teknologi. Geek becomes the new sexy… apalagi kalo pake ngegym kaya Kaesang.

Moral of the story: Kaesang, jangan putus asa. Ngebloglah lebih sering, seize the momentum. Inget yang jelek-jelek bisa dapet Sherina Munaf? You’re on the right track, Dude

Mengeluh Di PATH Bisa Dipenjara?

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PATH adalah mobile apps yang saat ini sedang booming di kalangan pengguna smartphone di Indonesia. Path menawarkan privasi, dan keamanan dengan menghilangkan fitur repost, retweet atau share status yang memungkinkan seseorang untuk menyebarkan keluh kesah orang lain. Banyak orang berpikir bahwa hanya karena tidak adanya fitur-fitur ini, maka mengeluh di Path itu aman.

Tapi realitanya tidak begitu. Dengan fitur sceenshot yang dimiliki oleh smartphone, memungkinkan seseorang untuk tidak hanya menyebarkan isi keluhan, namun juga nama. Di saat kita dengan waspada atau dengan menggunakan nama alias di twitter atau facebook bisa berbicara dengan kesadaran bahwa apapun yang kita katakan dapat dibaca publik. Kewaspadaan itu hilang saat kita memposting itu

Apa yang salah?

Saya percaya bahwa keamanan berkeluh kesah di Path seharusnya dapat terjaga. Masalahnya adalah orang-orang mulai menambah orang-orang yang mereka bahkan tidak kenal ke dalam lingkaran pertemanan mereka di Path. Bagaimana kita bisa tahu siapa yang bisa kita percaya dengan keluh kesah kita kalau kita bahkan tidak mengenal orang-orang ini.

Btw, itu kenapa saya tidak meng-add beberapa orang yang sudah berada di friend request saya selama beberapa bulan. Antara rasa tidak enak mau menolak, dan rasa tidak aman menambahkan mereka ke deretan orang-orang yang bisa mengetahui di mana saya berada, ngapain, dengan siapa, dan apa yang saya pikirkan tentang seseorang yang lain, partai politik, pemerintah, kelompok, organisasi masa, figur publik, dan lain sebagainya. Saya hanya bingung apakah ini tidak pernah menjadi pertimbangan mereka yang tiba-tiba saja sudah punya 200 orang di deretan teman di Path. Apakah mereka percaya dengan semua orang itu?

Saya yakin itu pulalah yang terjadi pada seorang mahasiswa bernama I Wayan Hery C. Mahasiswa di Kota Palu ini mengeluhkan bahwa dirinya merasa terganggu dengan suara takbiran pada perayaan Idul Adha kemarin. Keluhannya di Path ini dicapture seseorang, tentu saja salah seorang yang ada di Path friendslistnya, dan disebarkan di facebook. Alhasil dia diciduk dengan tuduhan menghina dan menyebarkan kebencian di social media.

Ya, pastinya saya merasa sah-sah saja seseorang merasa terganggu saat mendengar suara berisik. Sama seperti saya merasa terganggu dengan tetangga saya yang sering menyetel lagu sangat keras, atau saya yang merasa terganggu kalau ada bayi menangis di transportasi umum di mana saya tidak bisa kabur dari situasi itu. Tentu saja terlepas dari pendapat saya mengenai betapa konyolnya tuduhan itu, saya merasa sangat tidak bijaksana menambahkan orang-orang yang tidak bisa kita percaya di Path.

Berita lengkapnya ada di sini:

http://www.merdeka.com/peristiwa/tulis-status-di-fb-terganggu-takbiran-pria-ini-ditangkap-polisi.html

http://www.antaranews.com/berita/457618/keluarga-tersangka-penistaan-agama-minta-maaf

http://www.republika.co.id/berita/nasional/daerah/14/10/09/nd51y4-hina-takbir-idul-adha-pria-ini-terjerat-pasal-penistaan-agama

Ya… ya..

Saya sudah kehilangan kepercayaan pada media-media di Indonesia yang suka membesar-besarkan masalah. Orang bilang “terganggu suara takbir”, diberitakannya “menghina agama”. Memang orang-orang golongan tertentu suka sensi sendiri kalau dibilang berisik. Wapres saja pernah mengeluh terganggu suara adzan di pidatonya, tapi beliau tidak pernah dibilang menistakan atau menghina agama kan? Namanya saja orang terganggu polusi suara…

Yah…

Baiknya yang seperti ini jadi pelajaran saja. Saya jauh-jauh saja dari sana. Daah…