Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Independence Gone Undelivered

The problem with Independence Day is that you did something grand and you claim that there is no way you could go back to the time you were not independent. It is like a moment in time you entered, or a line you crossed, that brands you are liberated and no more enslaved.

But as it hit sixty four years last Monday, am I mentally imprisoned to think that I am more and more captivated with whatever it is not independent, that I become disillusioned with the claim “I am free”? One such is the increasing apprehension of freedom to expressing and practicing faith. Last Saturday Aug 15, 2009, the Post reported that a group of people in Tangerang threatened one minority who held their religious service move out of the area or get their consequences and this kind of anarchy seems to have just been replicated all the time with impunity. This is serious in its nature because how I express my faith does not have to be the same with another’s template for faith practices and this would not have been unbelievably prevalent were the government taking serious measure against those who threaten and vandalize in the name of God. However, here political correctness has not allowed the government to say what it has to say when it comes to the minority’s belief.

Then came security. Ten years ago, I worried the least about the security, my own security. I am not saying no muggers were lurking behind but at least I was secure to know that no one would blow off himself in a public place. With the bombing of the supposedly tight security of JW Marriot and Ritz Carlton, I, if not everybody, am made confirmed that no place is safe and now a prisoner of my thought of terror. You could never say this is Independence.

But what has been taking me away is that the so called increasing costs of living; they disown me more and more of my times as I commemorate this Independence. Prices of daily needs, health, education, and housing have gone up so sky-high they do not bother me catching up haplessly; no matter how many hours I spend making money. I found myself chained to barely survive the day by working longer hours day after day month after month. To my knowledge it takes so much more than it did to enjoy whatever level of life quality I would like to choose. Somebody raised kids and was not bothered by what I am like expensive baby diapers, expensive schools, expensive everything; some ads have even suggested that I put money down payment and make installment for my casket to anticipate my death; they say on the spot price is beyond my reach and I know they just knew how to worry me to death. This Independence is not liberating me , at t least from the anxiety about if I can live a decent life.

Monday, May 4, 2009

ILL FATED DADDY'S CADDY

Sometimes it takes the most vulnerable to bring down the untouchable and it could not be truer than knowing Antasari, man who has seeded fears and hatred in the hearts of those embezzling Indonesia's people's money, finally went down as the Police announced that he is the one responsible for the death of one of RNI's directors.

Nobody knew this caddy Rani; nobody would have wanted to know her either. But now she is everybody's talk of the town for she is believed to be responsible for the two married men fighting to win her that resulted in the death. Is a love game that one will always win because she or he loses? What I mean is, why should we finger point at only one of them for something that takes two?

True, the caddy should have known better that there was no way she could get into either man's life for BOTH are married. However, that knowledge too should have stopped the men from crossing the line. The men might say it was the woman who made the first move, but what counts is how they responded to it. And here we heard; one of the two won her and the other left burning and plotted his death.

My eyang Putri was right; it is always Tahta, Harta, dan Wanita.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

NOW AND THEN

Time is a funny matter; it just moves or flows like water unstoppably nonchalantly and along with the passed time grows our comprehension of meaning, life, and meaning of life...

If you want to know how time heals wounds, try meeting your old, very old friends. I have, and what comes after it's-good-to-see-you-again! is laughable recollection. Some pasts are regrets, complete failures, unbearable pains but what happened ten or so years ago just does not matter anymore when old friends meet. I have to agree to that saying, Time Heals All Wounds. Take my (past) pain as the example. Fifteen years ago I got this she-is-more-than-just-a-friend feeling sweeping me off my feet and did whatever I could to make her mine, only to learn very clearly her choice for that Pajak boy. But now, telling her, this Stella Duce alumnus, again how I was just makes it so nostalgically laughable and sweetens up all conversation we would have. If some say that even twenty years do not change anything, then they may need twenty one or twenty five.
The bottom line is, no one can stop the time from doing the healing.

You may recall that you thought some people you know would not make a bright future and some just would have it so easily. Those, you thought they would not, were the typical hanging out of the class too much, those not scoring well in school, or not having resources. Past assessments that some who would make them ideal citizens were those going to public university, hitting four for GPA, or having the hottest boyfriends. Whatever it was, some judgments had to be there to hail or to doom.
But look, time just surprises us. Those labeled Quasimodo (the despicable-looking character in Hunchback of Notre Dame) have turned up to be the hailed Prince Charming. And at the same time, those believed to be the most settled because of their money are now struggling for their basic survival doing menial jobs.

And with all of these we have come to learn the wisdom that time really transforms people and their understanding of practically everything. And judging (someone) is like denying haplessly what time obviously can do to his or her life.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

OBAMA UNLIKELY IN INDONESIA

And that is it; we watched last night all the buzz going on in Barack Obama's taking oath as President of the US. Everything was grand and many are still left so impressed how come a black finally becomes Commander in Chief in a country dominated by whites and how power transition have just run that smoothly.

But all the amazement aside, here in Indonesia we are like constantly being told that the things possible in the US are impossible.

Look at how aspiring candidates have learned their loss. In too many areas in Indonesia, like East Java and Maluku, for example, whoever wins, the losing candidate surely is the first to scream that the winning opponent rigged the ballot and consequently he demands a re-election. And the expressions have always been, well, violent to show the dissatisfaction. Supporters of the loser will take it to the street and disturb the public and its facilities, damage the winner's properties, and most likely harass his or her supporters. None of these aspiring leaders would learn how to express Mc Cain's statements: "I am the only responsible for the loss and "Let's help and work together with the winner to build our country".

The second impossible is if you are not one of the majority, that you are not labeled as a brother in faith, there is no way you are equal before the law, politically. In this great country one's religion is people's god. You know,if he shares the same faith with the majority, people have always been successfully made to believe that he must possess all the needed integrity, honesty, and commitment to advance this country. Only later, very shortly, will they have been made disappointed, by themselves, that someone's religion is not a guarantee for these desired qualities as their 'brothers' would turn up to be corrupt and incompetent governors, regents, camat, etc. Surprisingly, they never learn the lesson and when a new guy comes along, their first and only question is, "Are we talking with the same God?"

Enjoy. Keep cursing.