Friday, February 25, 2005

Engineers vs accountants

Kenapa engineers suka bash accountants yeh.

I found it weird being the only non-engineer there and listening to them bashing us accountants. The usual tirade i.e. how accountants are too stingy-lah, berkira sangat-lah, tak tau technical points of view-lah etcetera.

Erm, mister, hello?

No, I guess they didn't realize that I am not one of them, but one of them, instead. Mueheheheh.

Come on la, are accountants so bad to your projects' health?

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

SePeT invites

SePeT invite

Have you got your tickets yet?
Yes, today is the day for SePeT (read my pseudo-review last March here) preview screening at TGV KLCC (general release date : 24th February 2005), the movie that local newspapers have been been gushing on and on about in the last couple of weeks. What? What do you mean you haven't heard of it? Where have you been? The moon? Narnia?
And don't be jeles at me for them invites-lah, those are for other people :)

Jom tengok wayang!

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Pseudo-review : The Year of Living Vicariously

Year : 2004
Running time : 63 minutes
Language : Bahasa Indonesia with English subtitles
Writer / Director : Amir Muhammad

Made with the assistance of The Nippon Foundation's Asian Public Intellectuals Fellowship.

pic source

Aku cinta
Kamu cinta
Semua cinta
Buatan Indonesia…..

(I love, you love, everybody loves, Made In Indonesia)

The Year of Living Vicariously wears the badge of being a socio-political documentary set around the making of Indonesian film Gie (Miles Film, 2005). Gie, directed by Riri Riza and produced by Mira Lesmana is based on the life of the late Soe Hok Gie, an Indonesian activist circa 1960s who plays a role in the student movement which many believe is an important influence towards Sukarno's fall. Filming of The Year of Living Vicariously also coincides with the 2004 presidential election (which instituted Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono as the new president replacing Megawati Sukarnoputri). In the film Amir was the interviewer himself and got the cast and crew of Gie to candidly discuss their thoughts on Indonesian politics past and current, among a couple of other topics. Each and every one of the subjects interviewed had his or her own words to say, and Amir let them do it in the most unobtrusive way.

Using a dual screen technique in a major part of the film (which I think is a clever thing, this play of images), we would see a person answering Amir’s questions at one side while the adjacent image will either show them in action of the film-making process or be of another image altogether that may either emphasizes what they were talking about or completely negates it. Or both. The fact that the documentary was shot over a period of several months is apparent in the visible date and time markers that were purposely left in.

The Year of Living Vicariously takes you into the picture of the Indonesian that wants to see change in the country but is only too aware of the many obstacles, the Indonesian that hopes against hope that there will be a better future for the people, the Indonesian that only wants to make a living and be comfortable, the Indonesian that has unrelenting faith in the spirit of the country itself no matter what. There are some differences in how they see things and how it is done over there, and then there are also some similarities with my own beloved Malaysia. What amazes me most anyhow is the depth and the strength of these people's opinions. Save for perhaps one or two, they have some very strong things to say about the local politics and seem to be very comfortable in telling it like it is to a foreign individual. And these are actors, actresses, film crew talking - which includes the more-recognized Nicholas Saputra (though it's open for debate whether the same group who watched Ada Apa Dengan Cinta here would also be interested to watch Gie). But then the political overtones of Gie itself must've helped in getting them in the 'mood'. And I then imagine questions of the same line being posed to our local stars. Hehem. While doing Anak Mami the Nth, perhaps. Or Cinta Sekolah Rendah. Or whatever. Yeah yeah... I know that's not being fair. Hehem.

Although I am not Indonesian I could still relate to these people on a certain level, partly due to being in a neighbouring country and partly due to having plenty of Indonesian cousins, aunts and uncles thanks to a paternal grandfather that hails from Medan. The film reminds me too well of a comment made by a cousin when Dad joked about wanting to be president of Indonesia -

“Ahh.. mentadbir Indonesia itu enggak enak Om… walau untuk siapa saja”
(Uncle, running Indonesia is not a fun thing to do, no matter for whom).

pic source

In consistent fashion with a lot of his previous works, Amir once again unfailingly throws in a surprise factor to make The Year of Living Vicariously a different sort of work – this documentary also has the interviewees telling their favorite local folklores. Local folklores alongside political thoughts? Somehow, it works. I didn’t know the story of Samosir Island before, and now I do.

Interesting film to see then? You bet. Very watchable.

This film together with Tokyo Magic Hour has been invited to the 34th International Film Festival Rotterdam (January 26 - February 6) and the 48th San Francisco International Film Festival (April 21 - May 5).

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

The system

The system works! It does!

I witnessed an example of its workings today.

But sadly, when a single individual decides to take things into his/her own hand, taking advantage over those who depend on the system, it doesn't anymore.

One (purposely) broken gear.
One (purposely) loosened notch.
One (purposely) slipped step.
- is all it takes to mess up another person's life for good.

And to put the whole thing right again? Nothing less than the attention of a Big Man at the helm would do.

It's so unfair.

Who would pay for the missing 12 years?

Cakap.... cakap!!

(read topic a la the movie director in that P. Ramlee movie, complete with appropriate hand gestures)

Jeremy may have spoken in class today, but not me. I lost my voice yesterday and now can only croak at best, and even that would take so much effort already. And whenever the phone rings, come the frantic gestures to rein in the assistance of one of my colleagues to pick it up and explain 'She lost her voice la, sore throat, can you communicate thru email instead'. Thank God for emails.

Very true how we take so many things for granted.

Did you ever even think about the fact that you have a voice to speak with?

I hope I'll get it back soon. This whispering and gesturing business is not a very effective form of communication. Sis is having a ball at mocking me, and kept asking me to "Say Aaaaahhhhh???"


Friday, February 04, 2005

Apt pupil

"Source from PPU Sime Darby, system 33kV HT ABC O/H line."

One year ago, all I'd recognize from above is 'Sime Darby' and the word 'line'. That's all. And it wouldn't make much sense anyway. Sime Darby, erm that company, right? Line, what line? Telephone line? Article byline? Line-up at recess?

Being among people who always seem to know what they are talking about, with all sorts of terms and abbreviations which I can make neither head nor tail of in the beginning can be quite unnerving. There they were, prattling about SAVRs and SCADA readings and PECUs and sub-metering and fuse cut-outs while I grapple with the terms, always making notes and whispering to my more senior colleague, "Apa tu?"

Today, though, thankfully, I could raise my head in the meeting and pipe,

"And how many PEs?"

But there's so much to learn still, no doubt about it.


12.05 pm

+ Ey, N, your dad works at the XX office, right?
- Yeah, why?
+ At which department yeh, I have a question la about blabla procedure thingy.
- Uhm, well, what is it about actually? Tell me first la.
+ Well it's like this, a cousin of mine got this problem with some procedure blablablablabla then blablabla. After so long still not settled yet lah. So maybe if you can mention it to your dad, maybe he can point towards the right person or department, ya'know, to finally get it done?
- Oh, like that. Well okay, I'll try to ask him.
+ Thanks a bunch ya. Hopefully yer dad can suggest something.

2.00 pm

*Google google*
Search : XX office chart
Results 1 - 10 of about 315 for XX office chart.

Err... wait.... is that N's dad's name?

Whoa. The DG himself. Whoa.

*Ip msg a couple of friends*

N college mate : Ya la, that's her dad la, u dunno aa?

Ouch.... and imagine me asking, "At which department eh?"

Heheh. Ouch.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

WGC-ku sayang

Aku baru sedar keretaku yg berplet WGC masih boleh pergi laju lagi, itupun setelah 'dilenjan' oleh Ad dalam perjalanan mengejar masa tahap dewa waktu nak ke screening filem Amir Muhammad di Institut HELP bulan lepas (as usual, nobody should hold their breath in waiting for the pseudo-reviews) . Selama ni aku bawak kereta tu slow motion aje, 100km sejam dah rasa laju sangat dah, heh.

Tapi sebenarnya memang aku bawak kereta macam tu... perlahan (si Ad tak percaya aku perlukan sekurang-kurangnya 40 minit untuk ke pejabat pada hari biasa), penakut dan selalu tersesat jalan. Siapa pernah naik WGC dengan aku mesti dah arif pasal perkara ni. Sedangkan pagi tadi nak ke tempat kerja aku boleh sesat 1/2 jam... hahahahah... siapa suruh adventurous sangat nak ikut jalan alternatif padahal tak tau jalan sebenarnya.

Apa-apa pun aku tetap berterima kasih kepada beberapa individu yang telah banyak membantu aku dalam hal-hal memandu ni, seperti berikut:
1) Abah dan Mama (sebab benarkan aku guna WGC, jimat tak perlu beli kereta sendiri, ajar parking)
2) Bro (sentiasa tunjukkan contoh memandu berhati-hati, ajar cara ambik corner)
3) *Sis (sense of direction nombor satu, pegi mana pun tak sesat!)
4) *Ad (navigator utama dan juga menunjukkan teknik2 melenjan kereta e.g. dengan drop gear dan sebagainya)
5) *Ramli ("jarak biar jauh dengan kereta depan, nanti dia nak summersault pun kau sempat elak")
6) *Poje (pernah selamatkan WGC di Menara KL, di Lebuhraya Cheras, dan macam-macam keadaan lagi)
7) *Selemang (pernah selamatkan WGC dari terbabas masuk lorong kanan)
8) *Live (ajar aku bawak laju sikit hehehehe, tak tu dulu aku bawak kereta 70km/j je)
* - menunjukkan pernah berfungsi sebagai navigator aku ke pelbagai tempat

Sekarang mereka yang di tangga 5 hingga 8 dalam carta dah tak lagi terlibat dalam pemanduan aku, itu zaman dulu-dulu punya cerita. Apa-apa pun aku tetap berterima kasih kepada semua :)


I have to do it this way, or else it'll go down the drain.

1. Tokyo Magic Hour - revisited
2. The Year or Living Vicariously here