Saturday, September 2, 2017

Soon Finland

Music, can bring a particular feeling to your... let's say heart, said someone somewhere here in the universe. Well I prefer to believe: it is us, who bring that particular feeling to our heart whenever we hear a song. The song is just standing there, until we came and put some feelings (or suggestion? or anything?) into it. The song did not create the sensation, but we did. Our brain works incredibly fast to pick a certain feeling, memory, or thought when we hear that catchy notes at that first chorus.

And with this song called "Soon Finland" by the so-called-and-categorized-as-indie-band The Girl with the Hair, I experienced that moment.

The guitar welcomes my ear and all of sudden, the whole stuffs popping up and bringing a sentimental feelings to my lungs. And my heart. My brain has amazingly choose one or two memories to make me feel more dramatic when I'm just sitting (or jongkok sometimes) here in front of the laptop. And again, I cannot say that it is the music that got me this sense. It is me, and my fuckin old memories that I don't know why but it perfectly suit with the song.

The post is supposed to end right here but I have an additional information about what memories did come across my brain when I listened "Soon Finland".  I know it is not important that's why I suggest you to stop reading this post right now. But if you're insist---and only if you are insist---to read the rest of my words, I'd be appreciate it [insert bowing emoji/stickers].

It is not exactly a memory, it is just a kind of ambience that I'm not sure if I could describe it. It is like I'm on my way to new places with these people and I'm just so happy to walk out for awhile. I feel the clean air, the trees, the saltwater, and of course a glimpse of landscapes from the train and plane and car and motorcycle. Everything just mixed together so well that I started picturing those times I walk hand in hand with them, laughing over something ridiculous til my stomach aches so bad and tears fall down with no burden, having a little frustrating debate when you get lost and starving at the same time, telling some stories that you've never told before, and what else... screaming "I love you!" on the road with an high expectation that people would notice your happiness but, come on, you don't really care about it as long as the person behind you hear it clearly. And also many other things I couldn't even remember yet I can sense it right now.

I repeat the song over and over while I'm writing this post. You see, the song is practically just staying there, but as soon as the guitar starts to play, I flooded myself with tons of feelings and I put those into my words. I don't know why I'm writing this because I don't have any good closing statement for this post. Believe me, I've been thinking for half an hour so I decided to be honest to you all. Ciah.

This Saturday night, I choose to feel a bit philosophical/sentimental. And it turns well. More than well, I guess.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Is There Any Place for the Introverts?

I'm socially awkward.

I never know how to start a social approaches. With people. Like, real people. At first, back to those puberty times when I realized that I'm a terrible introvert (later on I'll state that being an introvert itself is terrible enough), I always blame my personality. Not only blame, but also make it as an excuse for my incapability to have a social life.

"Ah, gue nggak bisa ngobrol sama orang baru. Gue kan introvert," said stupid me.

And the older I get, the more I realize that words are so freakin stupid. Because at the same time, I also figure out that I haven't done much thing to fix my social awkwardness. Yea, this girl is a good example of talk more do less.

The moment that hit me so hard about being unable to do some social approaches with people (real people) is today. Well, it's past midnight so, yesterday. I'm in an internship program right now at the Museum Nasional. Two weeks ago, my friend Tya has done this with her group. She told me that, this thing called 'job' and 'work' is the dirtiest place you've ever seen. Not literally, of course. You know lah that jilat-menjilat-atasan kind of thing for the sake of your own benefit. It's happened in here, she said. You have to approach those higher people in order to (at least) being noticed.

Excitedly, I said, "Oh, yeah, I know. Oh, wow. Yea yea, I think I should do that too later. I think I can do that."

Then my internship weeks come. Aaand... if this social approaches was a range of 1 to 5 big, shiny stars, then I've only got one star. A single, tiny, not so shiny star. Of course, for an introvert like me, it was a hella big achievement. "Yay! I did it! I socialize with new people which is so great! Oh my god can't wait to tell my mom!"

I didn't say that, I swear to god, I didn't.

But you see kan, one out of five stars. I only know this bapak-bapak who always come to us and give us some works to do. Ah, even the fact that he came to us makes it worse. From many of employees who have higher positions, from many of them that at one time I could come and have a little talk with them, I only got one (or two lah) person. Even we didn't try to have a conversation with those high schoolers yang lagi magang juga. It knocks me out when Tya protesting us, "Seminggu magang di sini kalian nggak kenal siapapun???" (yes, with three question marks)

The rest of the day, I'm questioning my social ability. Until now.

When I was in high school, being an antisocial is such a big advantage. You don't have to think about other people business, you don't have to be a part of something that soon you might regret join it, and you don't need to talk much to people. Stepping up to the college life, I'm partly being an antisocial because I took a part of some organizations and that little shit circle of friendship. Cie. I slowly started to open up a bit with those people I mostly interact with. It feels good, of course, especially the organization. Although I only spread my social spirit to sesama jurusan Sastra, but once again, it's a big thing for this introvert! Yay!

...But still, I found it hard to socialize with new people.

Some famous people said, semakin tinggi kamu, semakin susah hidup kamu. Okay, I made up that sentence. But you get my point, right? From elementary to junior high, from junior high to senior high, move to college, and then working, it all just getting harder and harder. We might think the last one is the hardest but, hey, don't worry, there is still marriage which I guarantee you---though I'm not married yet---will be very, very, very hard. Life is a stairway, you walk up in order to get up there; the goals. This 'walk up' is not just 'walk up'. You might have to crawl, climb, fall down, rise again, fall down again, go back in the stairs, balance your effort and du'a so you don't fall again, and etc etc lainnya. It's hard, but that's the funny part of life.

Go back to my issues. So I've been thinking, with the personality that I have right now (an ignorant, antisocial, weird, and cat torturers), can I survive the next stairs that I'm going to reach? Will I have a chance to do a social approaches with real people? Can I have at least a short-term relation with new people so that they won't see me as an ignorant-antisocial-weird-and-cat-torturers person? Well forget about those questions. I have one real serious question: how do I get started to decrease my social awkwardness and increase my social skill with people? What should I do firstly to start those two things? Okay, that's two question. Here, the very last question I'm going to ask:

If there's nothing I can do to help myself fixing my social awkwardness, then, is there any place for this introvert to show her social awkwardness in a decent and accepted way?

***P.S.: I don't know why I use many 'social approaches' phrase in this post. I think it sounds cool but feels a bit weird though when I re-read it. Anyone who has better phrase to replace that, I welcome you in the comment section.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Why I Always Look Like I Don't Give A Shit For This Country

I was going to write something about organization, remembering that I just got back from SLET couple days ago. But then I opened my Twitter, read some of tweets from those Indonesian public figures (I don't think I should call them public figure but never mind), and found out that Ahok is being jailed today. Well, to be very honest, I don't really care about it or any kind of our political situation. It's because a) when I was in 8th grade and I did a presentation about politic, I couldn't understand the topic and ended up embarrassing myself for not able to debate about that topic, so I started to hate politic and all things connected to it. And b) karena politik itu jahat banget sejahat-jahatnya orang jahat. Menurut gue politik itu hampir setara dengan membunuh. It can killed yourself, it can killed your friendship, your ideology, your dignity, and so on. So yeah, call me a bad Indonesian for not giving any shit on this country's problems. Karena Capricorn tidak suka terlibat konflik tapi suka menyimak konflik yang ada. Huahaha.

After I scrolled down my timeline, I started to think of myself as a part of this country:

"I've decided to hate our political and other situations for they are so damn wrong and never being done, so, what kind of contribution that I can (or I have) give(n) to my beautiful country?"

Gue sempat menjawab dengan berkarya. Tapi gue langsung sadar bahwa gue belum punya karya yang pantas mewakili Indonesia. Gue berkarya untuk diri gue sendiri, untuk kesenangan gue pribadi. Menggunakan produk lokal, oke, gue akui itu bisa menjadi kontribusi yang sangat besar di bidang ekonomi dan kreatifitas, tapi masalahnya gue jarang belanja barang lokal karena pertama, tokonya kebanyakan online dan gue agak males belanja online dan kedua, mahal. Hehehe.

Terus gue jadi inget essay-nya Jonathan Swift yang dibahas di kelasnya Miss Dhika, tentang ide gila si penulis untuk mengatasi masalah kemiskinan di Irlandia dengan cara menjual setiap anak umur satu tahun untuk dijadikan makanan dan bahan pakaian. Oke, sebentar. Tentunya gue nggak bermaksud untuk ikut melontarkan ide gila gue untuk negara ini seperti yang dilakukan Om Swift, nggak. Tapi yang gue tangkap dari essay itu adalah, itu negara udah bobrok banget cuy pada saat itu (essay-nya keluar tahun 1729) and there was nothing easy to solve that problem. Even if there was something very logical, very easy, and acceptable for everyone (which is very impossible), it would take a long time to resolve the problem. And people didn't have a long time to wait the result of that logical solution. People would running out of patience and I think probably they would get angry at each other and then things would just getting worst.

When we discussed the essay, gue teringat salah satu dosen gue pernah menanggapi satu isu tentang buku cerita anak yang mesum dengan bilang: "Pilihannya cuma dua, seleksi atau menyesuaikan." (Sumpah, gue lupa detail jawabannya apaan. Jadi ini tuh dari grup yang di-cepu-in sama Lutfia, terus di share ke grup gue. Tapi sayang bukti fotonya udah ilang jadi gue agak lupa jawaban si dosen itu kayak gimana. Tapi mudah-mudahan kurang lebih intinya begitu.) Gue menangkap jawaban dosen gue itu adalah, secara garis besar, masalah-masalah di Indonesia nggak akan selesai dengan lo berkoar minta sana-sini untuk mengatasi itu semua. Kalaupun kita pengen bertindak, hasilnya nggak akan sesuai dengan harapan kita karena kita cuma orang biasa yang suka nongkrong di belakang kampus sambil main catur. Oke lah kalau kita adalah seorang yang punya influence tinggi terhadap orang-orang, tapi apakah masalah buku cerita anak itu bakal selesai begitu aja? Face it lah yah, Indonesia itu gampang ke-distract sama satu hal. Lagi ribut ngurusin yang A, tiba-tiba muncul yang B. Yang A belum kelar, tau-tau udah ngurusin yang B. Lagi sibuk nyelesain yang B, yang C malah muncul lagi. Begitu aja terus sampe Dora jadi presiden Spanyol. Jadi ya, ngurusin hal-hal begitu cuma buang-buang waktu dan energi. Daripada begitu, lebih baik urus diri sendiri aja dulu. Kalau tau ada buku cerita anak mesum udah beredar dimana-mana, ya jangan dibeli. Pinter-pinter pilih buku buat anak/saudara/keponakan. Karena percuma juga nge-anjing-anjingin oknum itu kalau kita nggak tau pasti siapa yang bikin. Iya, kan?

Balik lagi ke essay Jonathan Swift, gue melihat situasi yang digambarin Swift hampir sama dengan di Indonesia. We have so much problems here, like, a lot. And things would not getting better if we continuously put the blame on each other, on the government, on some people who we think is the responsible one. No, definitely not. Instead of doing that, why don't we try to bettering ourselves by doing good to everyone we know and everyone we meet. Why don't we try to make ourselves useful for those who need help. Why don't we see everything not only from our own perspectives but also from OTHERS' PERSPECTIVES, so we don't have to become that person who always think he/she is better than the others.

It might be sound selfish, sounds like you don't put so much effort for the country you live in. I do think it is selfish and egoistic, but to be honest, I have nothing more to give for my country. I don't think my thoughts or my speech, or my tweets, or my post on timeline Line, or even this blog post will change Indonesia (I believe those last three things are only to gather people attention and gain some likes or retweets. Don't be so naive, a little part of ourselves would more care about that rather than the purpose to encourage or inform people. Even I did that to myself sometimes). I prefer to start to do something from the closest place I can reach. I prefer to help my friends to study. I prefer to stop using plastic bag not because I want Indonesia to be free from plastic garbage, but simply because I don't want to make myself get used to use plastic bag. I prefer to use public transportation not because I can't ride a motorcycle or car, or I want Jakarta to be free from traffic jam, but simply because it is cheaper and healthier for me. I prefer to not getting involved in many issues in Indonesia because I know I'm not able to give some helps or solutions and also---I don't really care about it.

So why do I have to spend my time and my energy for something that I know would not be affected by my acts, when I'm capable enough to do something for my surroundings and, for myself?
© based on a true story.
Maira Gall