A Series of What Ifs

It is almost 2 months from the last time I wrote here. I’m glad and sometimes wonder if you’re still visiting this blog. Either by random Google search or through the link somewhere on the internet. Nonetheless, I always hope my writings can help you find something interesting, or maybe satisfy your curiosity on something.

A few months ago, I finished watching Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why with my sister. A series based on Jay Asher’s novel with the same title, telling the story of why a high school student named Hannah Baker killed herself. Hannah recorded her own voice through tapes, detailing every single person, including herself, who is responsible for her suicide. The series has been received a lot of criticism toward its depressing tones and mental health concern, but I bear myself to watch it until the end. Though I don’t recommend you to watch the 2nd season because its disappointing storyline, the series has been a topic of discussion for myself.

I realized that as a human, our existence has always links to each other. We might not realize that our tiny bit of action can matter a lot to others or result in almost nothing. Our simple comment can hurt someone, or maybe don’t even worth to remember for others. The complexity of human action and its impact can be a matter of life for someone else. In the series, there is a moment where some of Hannah’s friends contemplated whether they have given enough attention or care to Hannah. If they had been done something different, would Hannah still be alive? Asking ‘what if’ is always an easy way out.

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Hari Ini, Di Sana

Tanggal 21 April kemarin, seperti biasanya, masyarakat Indonesia merayakan Hari Kartini. Waktu kecil dulu, saya terbiasa merayakan hari tersebut dengan memakai baju daerah, kemudian berubah menjadi kebaya atau rok semasa kuliah dan bekerja. Di tahun-tahun tersebut, saya merasa tidak memaknai Hari Kartini yang sesungguhnya karena saya pikir, hari tersebut hanya gimmick belaka. Sama seperti hari simbolis lainnya, hari tersebut dijadikan beberapa toko (termasuk toko saya) untuk meraup keuntungan lewat iming-iming diskon. Saya juga tidak pernah (dan belum tertarik) membaca buku Habis Gelap, Terbitlah Terang selama ini. Tapi, selalu ada yang menggelitik di setiap tahunnya. Hari Kartini tidak pernah luput dari perdebatan.

Kenapa Kartini?

Pertanyaan tersebut selalu ada setiap tahunnya. Selalu dibahas dengan cara yang berbeda, tapi intinya selalu sama: “Apa yang membuat Kartini mendapat hari tersendiri di kalender dengan segala privilege yang dimilikinya?“. Kartini tidak mengangkat senjata. Kartini lahir di keluarga berada. Kartini hanya menulis surat. Sementara itu, beberapa orang akan membela Kartini dan mengatakan bahwa di usianya yang sangat muda dan budaya Jawa yang sangat ketat, pemikiran Kartini sangat maju pada zamannya. Jika dilihat lebih dekat, tidak ada yang benar-benar salah.

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The Lines We Make

I have other writings to finish and other priorities to-do, but I decided to sit down and write this.

My friends have sent me links since morning, about the Inter Korean Summit that is still happening today as I write this. The CNN reported that Kim Jong-Un has been the first leader of North Korea who crossed the demarcation line of North Korea and South Korean at the DMZ. As I watched the 5 minutes clips, I don’t know what triggered me, but I cried for a mere 10 minutes or so.

I have the privilege to visit the DMZ couple years ago. When I look back, I only remembered that I wanted to visit it, because it is interesting. But when I actually visited the place, it was more heart wrenching rather than exciting.

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Reflecting Back in Black Mirror

These past days, I’ve been writing two similar pieces titled After This Night and After Last Night. If you’ve been following Black Mirror series, you might notice I’ve been inspired by one of the episodes titled San Junipero. While I understand how well written it is and why the episode got an Emmy, it’s not one of my favorite episodes. I’ve finished the entire season of Black Mirror at the end of last year. So, I thought I will write something out of it. I’m not going to write any detailed review nor any spoiler. So feel safe to read it even if you haven’t seen it.

San Junipero (Season 3, 2016)

Black Mirror is a science-fiction anthology series created by Charlie Brooker, tackling the issues of technology within the modern society. Reflecting its name, Black Mirror often use satirical and dark tones, portraying the consequences of vast technology. Though its popularity skyrocketed after the series bought by Netflix, I still like the earlier seasons better. The first season of Black Mirror, I think, is the strongest season yet. Making no room for a useless episode, tapping the right issues to its core.

“If technology is a drug – and it does feel like a drug – then what, precisely, are the side effects? This area – between delight and discomfort – is where Black Mirror, my new drama series, is set. The ‘black mirror’ of the title is the one you’ll find on every wall, on every desk, in the palm of every hand: the cold, shiny screen of a TV, a monitor, a smartphone.”

(source: Charlie Brooker: the dark side of our gadget addiction)

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