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What I’ve Been Busy With

It has been nearly a month since I posted a ‘real’ blog post, and even this one can not be considered a ‘real’ blog post. I did not write anything about Christmas, New Year, and even about the Israel-Palestine never-ending conflict. There were no posts or even quick tweets. Therefore, hereby I want to say “Merry Super-Belated Christmas” and “Happy Belated New Year”. Also, I would like to say “Happy Belated Islamic New Year” and “Happy Upcoming Chinese New Year”. Shortly, “Happy New Year on whatever calendar you have there”.

There are 2 things that made me occupied: first is the final report of my internship to PT PERTAMINA UP II Dumai which thankfully made me eligible to take the final comprehensive test so that I can graduate. Frankly I don’t want to tell you anything about my final report. And second is the heavy, labor-work redesign of ColorLabs Project, both at the outer front-end look and the membership system at its back-end.

Here is my latest work in WordPress and Design. Thanks to WordPress, Adobe Photoshop (my daily design mate), PNG-24 Image Format (that is how real transparency should look like), and Internet Explorer (for being so stupid, inconsistent, incompatible, and worthless - thanks, you’ve taught me that good web designers are them who successfully tell you, who happens to be the worst Internet browser on the planet, what to do).


Bottomline, what I’m trying to say is: “Seriously, there are Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and Opera. It’s already a broad choice so you don’t have to count IE in.” Hahaha.

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Woman “Privileges”: Honorary or contempting?

What is your opinion on this issue? All the women privileges that we know in our society; are those really meant to respect them because they are women? Or perhaps it’s just a euphemistic way to tell them that they have some certain “stereotypically nature-born” incapability? Let’s say: female parking?

And for women, will you feel honored having such a great ease when parking your car or perhaps you might feel irritated because in your mind, you think that they’re just saying: “Your existence here will bring a catastrophic sluggishness in the parking queue line, so please park here, get out, and go shopping now.

Please mind the phrases inside the quotations above, “stereotypically nature-born”. I do believe in equality of men and women, but I do also believe that there are some commonly accepted stereotypes about women, and so does it about men. And there is where the interesting part lies: how women react to those honorary privileges (considering the stereotypes), and what actually is in our mind, men, when we treat women in a special way.

What is in man’s mind?

It is generally believed that women are humans to be respected and they deserve to be treated specially in order to honor them. Let’s say some examples in daily live: women are to be seated when there is only one seat left in the bus, and men are to open the door and to let women walk into a room before themselves. Gentlemen do that, how noble.

But, in fact, there are some undeniable viewpoints, mostly from men, which do not really feel so noble. “Women as a slow and easy-to-panic driver” is one example. Men, have you ever been in a totally unreasonable “local” traffic jam, as it was caused by only one car that took a very long time to turn her car in the U-turn? And you ended up saying, “Pantesan.. cewe sih yang nyetir..” Men who called himself gentlemen do that as well.

Do you see the inconsistency? The man in the first example did such noble things to honor women, but the man in the second example explicitly shouted out his negative stereotype about women. Then, what if I say that perhaps the gentlemen in the first example acted so noble because they do believe in some “incapability” that women have and they wrap in some way so that it will look noble from the outside? I believe some men have it that way.

How does woman react to those honorary privileges?

I once asked my girlfriend about her point of view on this issue; specifically about the female parking. And lucky me, she said that she will feel very happy to be given such privilege. It would take less time to park her car and more time to do her activities. But imagine if she is a woman who is being oversensitive to gender issues and take it the hard way. I guess she will feel contempt and humiliated, then will probably end up finding another “equal-to-men” parking sites.

Being equal, how far can it go?

I do believe in the equality of men and women, we all should have the same rights in every aspects of life. But, how far can it go?

Dian Sastro herself prefers to use the word “actor” instead of “actress” for the sake of gender issues. Well, I can’t image if she were French. A pronoun for a group of 1000 people consisting 999 women and 1 man is called “ils” (“they”, in English) and is considered masculine. And not to mention about all the adjectives and nouns that have masculine and feminine forms. It is indeed ultimately sexist. But, is it something really essential and needed to be “equalized”?

Those are the three examples: female parking, U-turn unreasonable local traffic jam, and Dian Sastro being linguistically inconvenienced.

OK, let’s get back to the main topic of the discussion.
Men, what is it in your mind when you are acting like a gentlemen? Do you do that because it’s the right thing to do? Or do you do that because it will make your life and everything easier?

Women, what do you think about gender issues and equality? What will be in your mind if you are provided with some “specific-gender” privileges? Will you feel honored, or humiliated? And how far that we all need to be equalized? That “linguistically inconvenienced” far?

Illustration was taken from here.

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Do we have the ideal idealism?

The title is rather self-explanatory. Let’s see, we are twenty-something, starting to walk through the path of an adult, learning how rough and miserable life can be, getting accustomed to conflicts in our personal life, family life, even to conflicts in things like politics, religion, and business. Furthermore, we are getting the idea of living life with certain principles, or with that what we call ‘idealism’. Do we have the IDEAL idealism?

Nationalist or Chauvinist? Religious or Fanatic? Green or Blinded? Independent or Big-Headed?

It might seem easy to pick, but if we dig a bit deeper, we will see idealism and absurdity are only separated with a thin, invisible layer. In fact we’re somewhere in between; we can even be both at the same time. But still, the question keeps resounding in my head, “do we have the IDEAL idealism?” What if what we believe to be ideal is not ideal at all? What if we don’t realize that we’re doing something which is actually against what we believe in? Or perhaps, what if idealism is something that really depends on one’s opinion and therefore there is no such thing like ideal idealism inasmuch as everyone will probably see idealism in different ways and perspectives?

What do you think?

Illustration (The Thinker - Paris) was taken from here.

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1 Year blogging. Thanks to you!

You have 89 posts, 2 pages, 1 draft, contained within 8 categories and 34 tags. You have 1,921 total comments, 1,921 approved, 0 spam and 0 awaiting moderation. You are using the Platformate theme with 3 widgets. This is WordPress version 2.6.1. Akismet has protected your site from 3,595 spam comments already, but there’s nothing in your spam queue at the moment.

Your blog covers your personal stuffs, stupid inessentials, thoughts about your deeply-beloved Indonesia, those nerdy chemical engineering articles, and the popular (here, at least) WordPress and themes posts that brought more 50GB traffic a month and forced you to do several hosting upgrades. In the end of July and September, your blog was inaccessible because you have exceeded your bandwidth limit and then you decided to move your blog to an unlimited web hosting.

You started everything without any sufficient knowledge and skills. You had been familiar with image processing software and you had already loved graphic designing so much. But back then, you had no idea how to deal with WordPress, web hosting, domains, and FTP. PHPMyAdmin and MySQL were something bizarre. You were inspired by a friend to have your own domain and he convinced you that domains was not something expensive and you could have it for a very low price.

Started with michaeljubel.com, you wrote totally-insignificant personal stuffs here. I mean, it’s totally inessentials, thanks for the name. Please recall those 2 articles wrapped-as-a-movie-review but inside, you’re grumbling about your unique lecture at school. And also those 2 articles stating that TU Delft was your dream. A month after, your nationalism was about to burst and you decided to write something about Indonesian tourism. There were some, some, some, some Indonesia-related stuffs back then and finally at the end of the year, you decided to launch your first WordPress theme, Linoluna.

Oops, one thing, don’t forget that you ever wrote several funny articles regarding the Durex ad, your pathetic theory of life, and those sexy models posing for Diesel ad stating their own perspective of global warming.

On May, you launched your second Worpress theme, Arthemia, and a month after, in the middle of your compulsory internship at PT Pertamina UP II Dumai (it’s in rural Sumatra), you decided to design a new WordPress theme and named it after the platinum-based catalytic reformation process: Platformate. Well, you really had a bad taste for names. And anyway, what were you doing there? Shouldn’t you be busy with school stuffs?

Anyway, on August, you moved your blog to a new domain, michaelhutagalung.com, for two personal reasons. Several days after, you launched your WordPress premium theme: Arthemia Premium and you’ve been so happy with the sales. Just now, you’ve launched your second paid theme: Platformate.

You really want to thank Rumahweb.com, Qwords.com, and Hostmonster.com for providing you the web hosting service. You learned a lot from them, their system, and everything. You also want to thank the online documentation of PHP and MySQL for being such a huge life-saver. And your biggest and deepest thank goes to WordPress and their WordPress Codex that is constantly showing up at your laptop screen every day.

You also thank your readers for coming by to your blog, commenting your posts, giving trackbacks and linking you from their websites. Please don’t give up giving theme support even though the issue has been asked 7749815345 times and there is already a solution to that issue. In addition, you want to personally thank some people: Hanna (for being such a lovely girlfriend; your blog to me and you to Michael), Sherwin (“horas Lae!”, I believe Michael will say that), Mya, Andika (your English impressed Michael a lot), Calvin (you have an unbelievably-impressive twisted mind), Christin, Yonna, and Marisa (your English makes Michael crazy). And especially for YanYan; although ydoea.com is expired already because he is now busy with his job at Halliburton.

Michael, I know you’ve been so busy with everything that you do not have time to congratulate me for this my belated 1st birthday. I wish you good luck with your school, with the comprehensive examination in March, and please finish that PT Pertamina UP II Dumai internship report. You must thank God for everything you’ve accomplished and for every single cent you’ve earned. Never stop learning again and again.

Happy birthday to me.

PS. Ah finally, this blog becomes personal again. At least this time. :D

Illustration by craftaholic.

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New Domain: michaelhutagalung.com

I am moving this blog to a new domain michaelhutagalung.com. Every content from the old domain are still available and can be accessed without experiencing any broken links (I hope). Beside that I am getting older and older and starting to put my concern on this first-name-last-name thing, I hope I can be clearly identified as an Indonesian person. This blog is proudly created in Indonesia by an Indonesian 22-years old guy living in a beautiful city called Bandung.

Ahh, I am so proud of Indonesia, and being Indonesian as well.

NB. Michael Jubel ini orang Indonesia lho. Michael Jubel Hutagalung, lengkapnya. Beberapa pemikirannya, curhatannya, celotehannya, dan WordPress Themes buatannya tersedia di sini dan semuanya asli produk orang Indonesia.


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