Wednesday, March 31, 2004

Today's Philosophical Question

"Was Internet designed for people who have waaaay too much free time?"

Answer: Yes.

Worth quoting:

Q: I jam a pair of scissors into my crotch every day. Do I need help?
A: Only if your aim is bad.

Tuesday, March 30, 2004

The Notorious BIGS's Competition Entry

Today is the deadline of the competition held by Bandung's Institute of Government Studies (BIGS)(1). They're going to reward the best article that portrays the topic "If I Were a Politician." The rules of competition state that the entry HAS to be at least four pages with single spacing. Well, here's mine.

A Decent Proposal

Dear Esteemed Judges,

I've read the rules in your competition, about the article must be at least four pages long with single spacing. Knowing that the first prize is two and a half million rupiahs, I sympathize for your plight in reading hundreds of entries.

How about you stop right now? If you name me the winner, you can immediately rest and spend the 50% share of the prize.

Think about it. Isn't this exactly what a politician would've done? Never play by the rules. Unless, of course, to his advantages.

Sincerely yours,

Isman H. Suryaman

1: It's a good thing the Institute's not located in Padalarang. People wouldn't be able to say the acronym with a straight face.

Saturday, March 13, 2004

Stop Laughing, Indonesians!

It's not like we're a nation of good English speakers, ourselves.

Exhibit A(1):

  • A menu in a Bali's cafe offers a breakfast special of "toes with butter and jam."

  • A manufacturer in Kalimantan produces welcoming mats that say, "Melcowe."

  • Here are actual menu selections in Sumatran restaurants and bars: "Bawels in cow sauce," "sour soup juice," "coffee and egg," "green sand bottle," and "green sand tin."

  • Inside many intercity buses in Sumatra, there's a sign that says, "Recleaning Seat."
Exhibit B:
Google around for "looser Indonesia." On the top two entries, you'll find the term "Top Looser" and "winner and looser." Both are, supposedly, written by Indonesians.
And not just grammatical. We also have semantical cases. Here's what I found on an official tourism website.

Exhibit C:
"North Sulawesi is Diving!"
"North Sulawesi is Culture!"
"North Sulawesi is Adventure!"
"We're waiting for you in paradise!"
Dunno about you, but that last line sounds like we're trying to invite tourists to die, instead of having fun.


"...the funny thing about living in bali is because this is the main tourist destination in the country, people seem to feel compelled to write everything in english, without the effort to do so properly. In result, you'll see a sign like this on the street (this is I think part of the local government's anti drugs campaign)."
(Submitted by Affi)

"To me, the hardest thing to do in Bali is keeping a straight face when reading signs like this one:"
You must be well dressed on the road. Violating this rule you will be seized and confiscated.
(Submitted by donna)

1: Information taken from Miranda Kenrick's "More Gems of Japanized English."

Friday, March 12, 2004

At Last...

...a complete guide to Bathroom Etiquette.

Worth quoting:

Never pee beside someone. Instead, it is best to wait while busying one's self with activites mentioned under the Ideal Situation, with the possible exception of moonwalking, for which breakdancing should be substituted.


Today's topic is "cow." Just click here now!

Thursday, March 11, 2004

Places That Make You Go 'Ungh' #27

Kiek in de Kok.

Worth quoting:

The Kiek in de Kok tower was at one time the tallest defense tower in Eastern Europe.
...Until somebody took a mighty swing and...


Just your luck. No fortune in this cookie. Try again.

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Killing Me Softly With His Bong

With his--WHAT?

No, you're not alone. Just visit the Archive of Misheard of Lyrics.


The water element runs still and deep. Treat your office boy well. You don't want extra, unwanted liquid in your coffee.

Monday, March 08, 2004

A Good Office Productivity App...

...for those who like to bleed their brains out.

Quoted from Trivia Challenge II:

"Quick! Name three Grimm's Fairy Tales that don't showcase the murder of one character as the prelude to the happy ending for another!"
From the Hangman Challenge:
"Guess 5 words in a row and enter your name on the nationwide Record Board!"
Just don't hang yourself (or your coworkers) in the process.


They start playing this.

CAUTION: Sexual innuendos ahead! You may never look at Lego the same way again.

Friday, March 05, 2004


Below are actual menu selections from various restaurants, coffee shops, stalls, and bars in Japan.

Oots Meal
Corn Frake
Fread Eggs
Om Lat Eggs
French Toost

Wild Bore Soup

Sofut Cream
American Dog
Good Burger
Grilled Winner
Fancy Dog

Steamed Vegitable Bums
Steamed Damplings
See Food with Plan Rice
Dice Beef Steak
Caab Meet Batter Rice

Cold Condomme in Dish
Flying Oil Prawns
Fried Flesh Water Shrimps

Oreange Juice
Mix Juice
Hot Coke
Rose Wine Squash

Strawberry Crap

(Inspired by Henry Alford's "Cafe Manhattan." Information taken from Miranda Kenrick's "More Gems of Japanized English.")
Still hungry for more Japanized English? Try

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Caption Writing Madness #2

Who Let the Cats Out!

  • Signs of Overworking #7: Even your cat's also stressed out.

  • "Who Let The Cats Out!?"

  • Exhibit A: Reincarnation does exist

  • Alcoholic Cat Anonymous: Meow for help now!

  • Catnip is a thing of the past

  • "Nine lives are too short to spend on chasing mice."

  • "I'm not lazy, I'm just multi-tasking."

  • (Thanks to pip.)

  • "Come on Baby, light my fire..."

  • (Thanks to lei.)

  • Ever wonder why cat-owners hesitate to leave their cat home alone?

  • Bad Advertising Case #45: Promoting a Book

  • (Thanks to enda.)

  • Attention, Students Who Smoke, Drink, and Fall Asleep during Class: A bright career as pets awaits!

  • (Thanks to Dian GReTaN.)

  • Lazying around spending other people's money? He's a cat. What's your excuse?

  • (Thanks to snydez & umar.)

  • The joy of having nine lives.

  • (Thanks to emil.)

  • A good cover for the upcoming book: "Rich Pet, Poor Pet"

  • "I only do this because my owner wants to show off on the Internet."

  • (Thanks to Nita.)


  • No animals were --hic!-- harmed during the process.

  • (Thanks to Affi.)

The above picture was taken by and belongs to isman. Click here to view the previous entry.

Want to know more about the cat in the picture? Visit his blog.

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

March Travel Tips

1) Before peeing in Zambia, arm yourself with a nail clipper.

2) Or a pet spider.

3) During a visit to Iraq, beware of falling bullets.

Worth quoting:

Due to a quaint national habit of firing rounds into the air to celebrate or beat boredom -- Iraqis have a special problem: falling bullets."

"Among Arabs, we believe that if a person owns a gun nobody will harm him," explained a gun shop owner. "Looters will stay away, troublemakers will stay away."
But not bullets, apparently.

(Thanks to pip.)

Monday, March 01, 2004

Are Indonesian Mostly Visual Or Verbal?

Here's a hint: In almost every bathroom doors, underneath the small icons of a person and another wearing a skirt, there will be labels that explain "Men" and "Women."


A Kompas article dated February 28th 2004 told about supporters of a local football club. Their official fan club costumes display the iconic face of Ernesto Guevara. And that is only one example. Many apparels exist displaying the famous picture taken by Alberto Korda. You can spot many Indonesians of various background wearing them.

But when asked whether they knew who was the person in that picture, there were various answers;

  • A revolutionist.
  • Nobody they know.
  • Bob Marley before sporting dreadlocks. And...
  • A superhero like Batman or Robin.