Category Archives: Life Bites

New Year and the Surreal New Normal

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary’s word of last year was “surreal”, which perfectly sums up how 2016 was pretty much worldwide and, like it or not, prepares us for 2017 onward. I personally think Merriam-Webster was being kind, because I would have … Continue reading

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The Acehnese Man Guarding Chinese Manuscripts

Believe in momentums? I do. After reading an ethnographic book I discovered the author’s Twitter handle, on which I found a link to someone’s blogpost about a museum of diaspora Chinese literature in Indonesia.   Museum of what?   Yeah, … Continue reading

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71 Years On: The Crossroads of Identity?

It started off years ago as Independence Day lunch with some diplomat friends; they’d just returned from State Palace for the ceremony, I’d just finished watching it on TV. Since they’d be in formalwear, I’d dress accordingly in variations of red-white … Continue reading

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Patriotically Going On A Spending Spree

A common conversation topic nowadays is how slow the economy has become. Friends in media and show businesses find it difficult to obtain advertisements and sponsorships, pals in fast-moving consumer goods and telecommunications (typically easy to shell out dough) confirm … Continue reading

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Digital This, Auto That… Reality What?

(ring) H… hello? Is this dotstoredotcom? Yes. I wanted to buy bandannas on your website but the system kept failing. Whatsapp message me, then. I’ll get back to you tonight. Tonight? You’re available now. (tentatively) Actually, umm… I’m working. In … Continue reading

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Incredible India, Indeed

Last year I spent Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day confined to hospital bed due to nasty dengue fever, caught from a pre-sunrise hike near Borobudur Temple. The funny thing is, while lying in pain all I could think about … Continue reading

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Year 2015: Under the Ever-Engulfing Virtual Spotlight

Has it really been another year? That’s pretty scary, my dear. It’s even scarier when your ups and downs throughout the year are played out under the spotlight. And in these days of 24/7 news cycle on digital media, reverberated … Continue reading

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Hot, Hazy, and Heavy Affairs in Between

Sorry, boys, not a column about sex. Carrie Bradshaw does that. It’s about how God-awful hot it’s been in months for all of us, and how inhumanely hazy it’s been in weeks for some of us. Let’s start with the … Continue reading

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Blissful Paradise Here, Biting Reality There

“I’m going away for a while. I need to disconnect.” Rat-racing while being wired 24/7, only urbanites, like yours truly, can get burned out and suddenly need to temporarily disconnect. For years before Eat Pray Love book and movie brought in gazillion bliss-seeking tourists, my … Continue reading

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Has the Humanity Been Warned of Its Own Demise?

Oh, relax– this is not about US Supreme Court granting civil marriage right to gay couples. I’ll leave that hot debate to others. This is about the larger picture of humanity, gays and straights alike. Way over a decade ago … Continue reading

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