Saturday, January 22, 2011

A Long Overdue Farewell

I haven't been checking in with my blogs lately. I don't know if it was because I didn't have time, or simply didn't want to make time for it. In fact, my bf was the one who reminded me that I have this account and that I kind of ditched it several months ago. Recognize this upfront, as a farewell post. You may or may not care, but this is what this is. So here goes.

The first thing I did when I logged in, was to check on everybody. How are they doing? Are they still writing? What’s new? Then I realized, everybody’s…moving on. I came across posts and posts about everybody’s life. Where have I been? Have I been working? Nope. Most of my closest friends know I’ve been meaning to, well, linger here for a while until I feel I’m ready to devour paperworks and desk-duties as a corporate slave.

Have I been happy?

Now there’s a loaded question. Have I? I’ve been... trying to be, I guess. I do laugh on a daily basis. I cry less than I did last year. For instance, I haven’t whimpered as much in this account for… I don’t know, six months?

But do they count as the indicators of being happy?

Let’s count the factorials here :

During the past months, in which I have been abandoning my virtual life in a blog, I’ve discovered new loves. A love for my oldest and newest friends. For once in a gazillion years, I feel wanted again. I feel like I was exactly where I should be. I should be happy for that. And I am.

I have accomplished so much : academically, socially, creatively, and in so many other ways I could possibly imagine. I’ve managed to graduate with a 3.35 GPA. I’ve done more creative works in the past six months than I did in the total of 21 years I’ve lived and breathed art. I finally know what my future’s going to look like. I should be happy for that. And I am.

I’m finally heading somewhere in my relationship. I’ve learned to set some boundaries for myself, define who I am and be accounted for it, I’m an independent woman in a very dependent relationship. That oughta count for something. And it does.

But something is still missing. I’m still left hanging in the middle of the night, mind wandering everywhere, reminiscing the past. What am I still searching for? Because the knight in shining whatever is either here already, or he’s never going to come at all. The fairy tale I keep telling myself to help me get by is still a fairy tale. So here’s what I think I’ve been doing for the past months : I’ve been selfish.

Because this blog, is all about me. In disregard of everybody else’s feelings and concerns, I have made this blog the best and worst part of me, and it can’t be both at the same time. So I hereby, cutting a mole in my life. This blog account has managed to accompany me through time travels, emotional roller-coasters, and everything else in between.

Yes, I was happy. But I was never content. I’ve learned to be selfish, now I need to learn to be otherwise.

So good bye.

Who knows maybe one day I’ll be worthy of your time.

PS. Thank you for the time travels, Alana. Scents of him will forever loiter in the back of my mind.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Before Everything

It has been almost a month, since Al went from being an excellent student to an unemployed couch potato. She couldn't say she was bored, but there was really not much she could do. She usually just sit around all day, watching whatever is on TV, or doing the occasional designing projects--which don't come very often either. She began to have this plentiful of spare time, and that means, she began to have the opportunity to reminisce.

That day, her thoughts wander few years back, about a long conversation she had over an afternoon walk in some strange town with not-so-strange man. No, she was no Julie Delpy and he was no Ethan Hawke. But the situation came very close to the one they shared. Come to think of it, the voice... the deep and heavy voice, resembles much of his voice.

"People are strange, you know," Al strolled down the street in her loose white top and worn-out jeans. It was warm that day.

"Strange how?" he asked. He was texting, but it was as if he was so ready to get involved in this conversation as it started.

"I mean, we are socially-induced creatures, right? So there's no way we can live without one another. We will need our friends, our family, and all of our actions depend on their actions and their thoughts, their point of view. Even though we declare we don't care about what they say, even not caring is a response of society's expectations toward our traits, right? We desperately need other people to justify our very existence in this world," Al's eyes wandered toward an ice cream stall across the street.

"Yes, of course. Social-constructivism. I exist because everybody says I do." he sneaked his phone into his jeans pocket.

"Exactly! But the strange thing is," Al paused. "...we get really tired of each other sometimes."

Her legs made a right turn, despite the fact that she didn't know where she was going. But he didn't seem to mind. He would have enjoyed getting lost, if that means he could spend more time with her.

"If I were to make up a disorder to explain who I am, I would say I'm a compulsive competitor." Al chuckled. "Like, I have this huge urge to satisfy myself by being better than everybody else. Even a tiny reward like a simple compliment would be my booster. You know what I mean?"

"Some might say you're an overachiever." He smiled gently.

"No, that's the point. I'm not. I don't come top in class, I don't excel in every subject I could put my hands on--hell, I don't even put my hands on much subjects. But I have this constant need to do great in things others can do okay. The need to be praised, to look good. It's... exhausting."

"Aren't we supposed to feel the way you do? I mean, us youths, who have this big burden on our shoulders to do better than our predecessors did?" he brushed her hand a little, to make her know they were turning left.

"If we are, I think it's sick," she said. "You know, I used to have these terrible nightmares in which I am an assassin or an outlaw, or something, just running and running and running like something was chasing me. But then I came to this alley, a dead-end, with brick walls around me... and there was a person. That person was kneeling in front of me, I couldn't see the face clearly. Then I reached to my back and the next thing I knew I was pointing a gun to that very face. And I pulled the trigger. Just like that."

"That's pretty haunting," commented he.

"Yeah, and I always woke up sweating and my heart was pounding hard. Like I was really running, and the gunshot I heard really came from my gun." she could feel the nightmare creeping up to her vividly.

"Maybe every one of us has this sort of reality we always would want to run from. I have this dream of running, too, every once in a while. And I'd like to think it's normal. Because, face it, life's full of shit. It doesn't always come around the way we want. Sometimes it even goes, thousands of miles from what we expected it to be," he walked slower, like he was deep in thought. "I think we are entitled to run away sometimes. Calm ourselves."

"But what if, it's not the reality I'm running away from? It's the dream. The ideal world created by society?" Al spoke in a soft voice. "What if, I'm running away from society itself? From my friends? It's like, I am in fact an outlaw because I didn't do what their ideal norms expect me to do?"

"Then the best you can do is try. When you get really tired, then you outcast yourself. Re-prioritize. Create your own comfort zone, and succumb to it. Until you're ready and you'll start from scratch." he shrugged. "Though as cruel as it is, the world doesn't wait for you to get back on your feet."

"Yes. So this is what I do. Alone. Because nobody else can feel what I feel, and I have no right to expect otherwise. All we can do is take care of ourselves."

They came to an intersection. It was getting dark and it got pretty quiet. Out of nowhere, Al felt a hand holding hers. He murmured something she couldn't make out, then he guided her across the road.


Al sighed. The sun felt gentle on her face. She planted her feet into the short grass below. She shut her eyes, reliving every scene once again. She was running. With him. She opened her eyes.

And there he was.

The voice.

In flesh.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Color Me Wild

How much of a difference can two people have until they're just plain... different? If God were a fan of uniformity, wouldn't he had just create clones of Adam instead of pairing him with Eve so they can mate and produce a variety of children?

Forgive me for being forward, but God loves colors. It is proven in all His creations, all the different types of insects, of mammals, of fishes, of bacterias, of everything! Then why, oh why, do we defy God's will to preserve those differences in one big harmony that completes one another in His grand design?

Al acknowledge within her heart that every single piece in this giant puzzle is unique. This, she didn't learn the easy way. It took most of her high school era, throughout her college life. There's no low or high, things are just different. But like all the differences there is, this piece of mind she couldn't share with everyone else.

A certain part of her life insists to be more like her. It's flattering, sure, but at the same time, it's bothering her. Because now she has to live with discontentment coloring her world. She doesn't go well with discontentment. For her it's just a relentless journey that leads nowhere.

"Why would anyone try so hard to be someone else, when they can use their time and energy trying to be the best of themselves?" she whispered to the void.

As the gentle fall breeze strikes her cheek, she tries to understand it all. "And why do I have to be the one preaching when it's really not my responsibility?"

She thought about the voice again. Pan. He hasn't been around. No matter how hard she tries to think of him, he never shows up. It's like, he evaporated through the air she breathes and becomes a part of herself, always telling her what to do. But she'd like to hear his voice again. To know that certain things she knows are actually real.

Why am I always the one to blame? To take responsibility? To be tough, to be... able? For once in my life I want to take a back seat, to see where the driver's going and really trust him that he would bring me to places I will most enjoy. Sometimes, there's a great chance I really desire to be taken care of, for a change.
-Alana Stidenick

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The Lovely Bones

It's easy to spot one's flaw when you're standing in a distance, right?
For Al, it was as easy to spot her own flaws and derangements. She never thought she would be this bitter poison, going around hating people because they seem slightly more successful than she is. No, she was always optimistic. She never needed the strange colorful dream she had a couple of months ago. But then again, everything feels overwhelmingly different now. It was as if, somehow, she had managed to destroy herself, blame everyone else for it, and stay put.

"I don't understand the state I am in," she said to someone, once, as she quietly whispered to herself, "who are you?"

It's like losing directions, like standing in the middle of an opening, the sky above and endless grass field below. With no limitations, no street signs, no trees, no stars, nothing to guide her. Not even a voice. That voice she had been waiting to hear, but never did for quite a while. For a split second, she thought she was angry. The promise he had made for her, seemed to have been flushed down the drain.

But no.
She's not angry. She's just... at loss.

It's just like grieving, you can't really get yourself up but the world doesn't have the intention of waiting for you either. And she had never thought, that change would be this perplexing.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Observing the Observers

So, I attended Indonesia's 1st Hot Air Balloon Adventure at Sentul City yesterday (27/3). Crowdy, yet cheerful. There were only two balloons on ground when I get there, whereas the other 16 were airborne. I love seeing the colors against the clear blue sky. The anticipation of waiting the 16 balloons to get back and be displayed on a corner. It was pretty hot, I tell you, I had to squint my eyes very hard every time I got out of the shade. My bf was sweating his ass off. I'm sure everybody felt the same heat. It was only 8 o'clock and it felt like 12.
There's something else I notice from the crowd. The way everybody was holding their cameras, man, it could as well be a camera exhibition. So out of the mere excitement of seeing a lot--and I mean A LOT--of cameras, my dad offered a suggestion. Why not observe the observers? And so I did.
Here are some of them.

... and this is my very own personal favorite

What a weekend. I get to see the parade of balloons, spend time with my loved ones, and freshen my eyes with beautiful, beautiful gadgets. ;D

Until next time,

Friday, March 26, 2010


If Al said she never think about that crazy guy she met that one afternoon, she'd be lying. No matter how hard she tried, he was all she thought about. No matter how preoccupied she was with her life in college. But he was always there. In the corner of her eyes, in the back of her mind. He was there. With bright colorful hair and dark blue eyes. Sometimes she swore she could hear his voice. No, not the cheery one. The deep, heavy voice. Yet she hadn't seen him again. She had walked that narrow path every day for quite some time but he wasn't there.
Until that day.

Al saw a balloon floating above her as she walked the same path she walked yesterday. And the day before. And the day before. A bright red balloon. Al didn't want to follow it, but it went where she went. Almost like him.

Exactly like him.

Because there he was. At the end of the path, with his hands behind his back, a mysterious smile on his face, and his colorful outfit. Al didn't expect to see him, but now that she did, it almost felt.. familiar.
"Hello," he greeted.
Unsure, Al stayed quiet.
"Oh, don't act like we don't know each other, now." he started his last ritual, moving around, circling Al like a carousel.
"I still don't know your name." Al stated.
and with that, he stopped, grabbed her hand without giving her time to react, and pulled her.. upward. Or downward. Or sideways. Al couldn't decide which way they were moving. She felt her head spinning. Her body was tingling all over the place. There was a sense of suffocation in her throat, her heart began to pound really fast. She closed her eyes, but she could still see hints of colors from all over the place. A shade of red. A touch of blue. A sparkling yellow. A splash of magenta. Everything. She spun, she spun, she pun.

And she stopped.

She felt gravity began to take hold of her. Her arms were throbbing. She must have hit some kind of pavement.

"Open your eyes." a deep, heavy voice whispered in her ear.
Al obeyed. She didn't expect what she was seeing. A land of balloons. Of rainbows, of rain. Yes, it was raining something that looked like paint, but didn't tint Al's body as it hit her.

He helped her up. Al saw the pavement she hit. It looked like a dance floor.
"I," he began leaning away from her, making the floor glow as he stepped on each tile, like in one of Michael Jackson's video clip. "am your wildest imagination."

Al looked around. She saw a desert of canvas on her left. With mountains of charcoal pencils, trees that looked like paint tubes. In her right was a stage, with full band instruments. They smell funny, though. Like... vanilla.

"I am your simplest thoughts, your most childish wishes." he approached a grand piano on the stage. Stroke a note, creating blitzes of multiple shades. "I am your craziest behavior. Your complicated life."

He moved around again, lights followed his every step. And so did she.

"I am your sanctuary. I am your remedy. I am your pillow." he stopped short, in his typical way, and started walking toward her. "I am you."

"But how could you be me if I am me?" Al asked.
"How could you be you if I am you?" he responded. His cheery voice began to fade. His rigid posture softened. It was almost as if the colors in his clothes were fading. He took Al by the hand, guided her to the nearest hill facing the canvas desert. A tree of paintbrushes standing tall behind them. He asked her to sit down with him. She obeyed.

"I am your deepest thought, Al. I don't exist unless you think of me. I am here to help you." he said.
"Help me what?"

Al took a deep breath, and as she let go, she drew her eyes off of him, to the sight in front of her. The grand masterpiece of colors, of shapes and sounds, and smells. "What else do I need to understand?" she whispered, feeling the urge to choke back the tears that were about to come out.
"Me." he answered gently. "Call me whatever you like."
Al fell silent for a while. "Peter?"
He smiled cryptically. "That sounds catchy. I'll be your very own Pan."

They were silent. They were silent for quite some time. Al was enjoying the cool breeze against her face. How it made her feel like she was underwater. She embraced the smell of sugar and vanilla in the air. The touch of soft grass on her hands. The marmalade sky. It was her sanctuary. It was her wildest imagination. The world of the abstract. Of possibilities. Every possibility on earth, and beyond.

"How can I come back here?" she felt tears running down her cheeks.
"Think of me." Peter put his arm around her shoulders. His deep, heavy voice was beginning to get very gentle. "I'll always be here. This is my home."

Al closed her eyes.

Friday, March 19, 2010


Al sticked up her earphones. In the mere knowledge of how this day was just another bad day like she had predicted, she scoffed, picked another song by Paramore and walked. Like always. Rewinding the tape in her head, she played that day’s scenario all over again.

She woke up.

Had breakfast.

Got a shower.

Put on some cutting-edge outfit to impress her classmates.

And walked. and walked.

And walked.

And played the same old role, the same old smile, the same old pretenses. The day went by, same old Al. She scoffed again, kicked some gravels as she strolled down the narrow path to her house and tried to let it go.


She almost couldn’t hear it.


Al stopped short. She removed one of her earphones and looked around. “Hello?” she stretched her ears, trying to listen. Usually, she never had been so bold. Her iPod was almost like her sanctuary, immersing her thoughts in rhymes and loud guitar sounds. Somehow, today was different.

“Hello? Anybody here?”


Al almost jumped backwards when she saw him—or it. A tall figure. A very colorful tall figure, was standing in front of her, grinning. It had hair like a very strange rainbow-flavored cotton candy. Its teeth were white, with a hint of pink gloss all over it. It was wearing a suit, a green jacket and yellow trousers. Its big red shoes looked like it belongs to Ronald McDonald. Its posture was… masculine, with a touch of vanity. Maybe it was fair to say that IT was a man. A slender man, bold in appearance but gentle in his gaze. He was standing with his hands behind his back, as if he was holding confettis and was ready to throw them at Al.

She was uncertain as to how to respond. She just stared.

“Aren’t you going to greet me back?” asked the man.

“I only greet whom I know.” Al answered. Her eyes fixed on his dark blue iris. The darkest color she could find in him.

“Well, what’s your name?” he asked calmly, in a cheery voice, almost like a voice of a seventeen-year-old boy who has just reached puberty. But Al was sure she could detect depth in his tone.

“Alana.” She said. “Who are you?”

“Well,” he started circling her. “I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together.”

Al scowled. “Did you just quote The Beatles to me?”

“I don’t know, did I?” he stopped moving, leaning his face against hers.

“Okay,” Al pulled back, started to walk away. She plugged her earphone back to her left ear and cranked up the volume. She didn’t have time to indulge a mad man.

But then again, there was something intriguing about him. Something… more. And as she hasten her steps, she could hear a distant voice in her head.

“We’ll be seeing each other.” A deep, heavy voice.

Al looked back for the last time, to find that the man was gone.