Category Archives: Review

Review: In a Jakarta Prison “Life Stories of Women Inmates”

Judul         : In a Jakarta Prison “Life Stories of Women Inmates”
Penulis     : Sujinah
Penerbit   : The Lontar Foundation, Jakarta, 2000
Halaman  : 172
Bahasa      : English
Harga       : Rp 72.000,00

Neneng, Inah, Leha, Asmi, Nyonya Hamid, Sri, Ita, Genuk, Checkers, Keling, Nyonya Kasim, Nunung dan Lian adalah beberapa nama perempuan yang hidup di balik jeruji besi bersama Sujinah. Sujinah merupakan mantan anggota Gerwani, yang dijebloskan ke dalam penjara pada masa pemerintahan Suharto.

Keberadaan Sujinah dalam rumah tahanan Tangerang agaknya menjadi corong bagi mereka yang selama ini bungkam akan apa yang sesungguhnya terjadi di balik tembok tinggi dengan jeruji besi yang mengungkung para tahanan dalam sel mereka.

Cerita dari Keling misalnya, seorang narapidana yang ditahan karena kelihaiannya sebagai seorang pencopet dari Sungai Ciliwung yang akhirnya tertangkap di Pasar Senen. Tentu saja, bukan karena tanpa alasan akhirnya Keling kembali ke pekerjaanya sebagai seorang pencopet setelah pernikahannya dengan Bopeng, memaksanya untuk pensiun dari pekerjaannya sebagai seorang pencopet, namun kehamilannya yang menuntutnya untuk hidup sehat, Mak Isah yang butuh perawatan di usiannya yang sudah senja dan Bopeng yang dipenjara, memaksa Keling untuk kembali beraksi. Terdiam, tertunduk dan merenung, sambil tersenyum Keling berkata pada Sujinah, “Isn’t life a bitch?”

Lain pula dengan Nyonya Hamid, seorang nyonya yang hidup dalam kemewahan namun selalu dirundung kesedihan ketika akhirnya ia memutuskan untuk menikahi Hamid, seorang pemuda sederhana dari keluarga sederhana. Kesuksesan Hamid dalam menjalankan bisnis yang telah diajarkan istrinya, kekayaan yang telah melimpah dalam rekening banknya agakanya telah membutakan Hamid, sanga pemuda sederhana yang akhirnya main gila dengan perempuan lain. Kesetiaannya Nyonya Hamid sebagai seorang istri telah dibalas dengan dusta yang begitu menyakitkan hingga akhirnya Nyonya Hamid memutuskan untuk mengakhiri hidup suaminya di suatu sore.

Dua cerita dari Keling dan Nyonya Hamid kepada Ma, begitulah panggilan akrab Sujinah, telah membuka kabut yang membungkus tembok-tembok penjara yang penuh cerita. Pintu penjara yang berada di balik kabut akan selalu terbuka bagi siapa saja yang telah melakukan kejahatan, tak peduli mereka kaya, tak peduli mereka miskin. Terkadang pula, mereka pun, terkadang tak peduli apakah mereka bersalah atau tidak. Yang ada hanyalah cerita yang tak ceritakan kepada masyarakat, kepada dunia tentang apa yang sesungguhnya terjadi.

Keberanian Sujinah dalam menuangkan pengalamannya dalam tulisan memang perlu diacungi jempol. Seorang tahanan politik yang bersuara akan kebenaran yang tak pernah diketahui orang hingga akhirnya dunia mendengar dan mengerti apa yang sesungguhnya terjadi di balik jeruji besi, ketika mereka mendengar kata penjara. Bukan hanya penjahat yang ada dalam penjara namun ada pula korban kejahatan yang dipaksa untuk mengakui sebuah kejahatan.

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Review: The Magic of Homemade Rice and Coffee Scrub

Do know you that coffee bean and rice grain have a great benefit for your skin? [2014: EO]

Do know you that coffee bean and rice grain have a great benefit for your skin? [2014: EO]

In these last few years, I have been having a hard time to deal with my skin (oily and acne) problem. I have been seeing a number of dermatologist, purchasing the best a.k.a expensive skin care product and spending million rupiah to get rid of it but all I got was just a constant disappointment. Nothing worked well and caused me dependency! So, after the “innovation” of toothpaste face mask to get rid my acne, which works well and I still apply it to my face, I just discovered that I also can get rid of dull skin, black spot and to have a glowing skin by making my own homemade facial and body scrub with coffee bean and rice grain. How come? Below is the fun fact! According to my internet research, Dr. Leslie Baumann, a dermatologist at the University of Miami, was quoted by Elle Magazine Canada, mentioned that the caffeine in coffee can help to smoothen the skin and also remove the skin cancer cell by sun damage. She added that caffeine is an antioxidant, it helps to shrink the blood vessel and dehydrates fat cells.

Homemade coffee and rice scrub [2014:EO]

Homemade coffee and rice scrub [2014:EO]

Other than that, an article on Livestrong.com mentioned that coffee scrub can help to treat the redness and inflammation, get rid of cellulite and also smoothen the skin. In addition to that, coffee scrub also can help to get rid the dark under-eye circle. Meanwhile  Caroline Frazer, a skincare expert, was quoted by dailymail.co.uk, pointed out that that rice scrub helps to smoothen and brighten the skin because it contains pro-vitamin B5 and vitamin E. The article also mentioned that rice has been used by Japanese to get flawless skin for hundred years.

Applying the homemade rice and coffee facial scrub [2014: EO]

Applying the homemade rice and coffee facial scrub [2014: EO]

So….. since I found out about the great benefit of coffee and rice for my skin, I have been continuously making my own homemade facial scrub from coffee and rice on daily basis. Everyday, I scrub my face with it especially after I did an outdoor workout or used a make up, i.e powder. And guess what? After a month I applied it to my face, I have started to see the result of it where my facial skin is brighter, smother, firmer and glowing. Of course, I have been aware that it DOES NOT give me AN INSTANT best result but I see that the result comes GRADUALLY. Nowadays, I can start to see that the result coming, where I have so much less acne comparing than before. If I do have acne, it usually comes only 1 or 2 before my menstruation comes. On the top of that, I also can confidently go out with  my face naked, i.e I don’t have to use any foundation or bb cream to cover up my dull facial skin anymore. However sometimes I am still using powder, it depends on the occasion.  You can see the different on the picture below!

Before using the magic coffee and rice scrub! FYI, I wore make-up in this photo [2014: E O]

Before using the magic coffee and rice scrub! FYI, I wore make-up in this photo [2014: E O]

My naked face! No foundation, no powder, no heavy make-up! [2014:EO]

My naked face! No foundation, no powder, no heavy make-up! [2014:EO]

So how do you make your homemade rice and coffee scrub? It is very easy! Just grind two table spoon of rice and a table spoon of coffee bean together. Mix the powder with either mineral water, olive oil or honey. For me, I usually mix it with water only as I don’t particularly believe that the olive oil or honey that I bought 100 percent organic or natural. I am worried if it might contain some chemical, which might be harmful for my skin. You know … business people are tricky. They claim their product to be organic meanwhile some of them are not. So I rather to use mineral water. Lol! FYI, I also use the rice and coffee scrub for my body. I am glad that I found this great secret natural beauty recipe, which costs me small fortune and works well. I also don’t have to be worried with any chemical side effect for my face anymore because it is all organic and so far I have no side bad effect from it. Now I can save my money that I have been spending for skincare treatment product, which never worked, for something else.

Goodbye expensive skincare products! [2014: EO]

Goodbye expensive skincare products! [2014: EO]

It is amazing that actually we can find a health treatment in our own home. It is natural, organic and inexpensive. And you know…. this great “innovation” really helps me to minimise my spending  on cosmetic as well as helps me to minimize my consumption on chemical products, which tend to have a negative effect to my body. So farewell expensive chemical facial skin care products! signature

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Review: Han Gang

 

Han Gang Waltermongisi [2014: E O]

Han Gang Waltermongisi [2014: E O]

Lately I have been hearing many people saying how delicious Korean food are especially the barbecue one.  Honestly, I have never been really interested to try it until few weeks ago I was writing about Korean restaurants and look at the Korean food image at the website. It looks so tasty and tempting.

So here I was… going to Han Gang restaurant in Jalan Walter Mongisidi, South Jakarta to try my first Korean barbecue. As I never tried Korean barbecue before, the waitress suggested me to order modeum gogi, an assorted beef. My ooo my… what a big menu?! I even felt so full to the next day!

I was really glad that finally I had the Korean food after craving for it for few days and it was super good. However I would not have it so often as it is so filling! It is not that expensive for that big menu, my friend and I spent nearly Rp 700,000 (68 USD) for a good quality Korean barbecue. It’s worth!

Anyway, I was wondering who the owner of Han Gang Mongisidi is because on the ground floor of the restaurant is a luxury car showroom called “Leo Auto Cars” :-D

Free authentic Korean appetiser at Han Gang [2014: E O]

Free authentic Korean appetiser at Han Gang [2014: E O]

Modeum Gogi [2014: E O]

Modeum Gogi [2014: E O]

The beef were grilled with  Korean charcoal to bring an authentic taste and distinctive aroma [2014: E O]

The beef were grilled with Korean charcoal to bring an authentic taste and distinctive aroma [2014: E O]

Ready to eat! [2014: EO]

Ready to eat! [2014: EO]

 

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Review: Toothpaste Mask For Acne Treatment

White toothpaste works just like clay mask, it reduces excess oil and dry out the pimple [2014: E O]

White toothpaste works just like clay mask, it reduces excess oil and dry out the pimple [2014: E O]

Have you ever heard the beauty myth that toothpaste therapy to treat your acne? Well…. I have a story to tell you!

Few weeks ago, my maid told me that instead of wasting my money to go to doctor and buy for an expensive cream (which honestly it doesn’t work), I should use toothpaste to treat my acne. What? She gotta be kidding me! I said to myself. Toothpaste to treat my acne? What about if it gets worse?  And why on earth should I believe my maid, who barely could read? Where did she get the information from? It’s weird! 

Despite the fact I asked such a question to myself, I started to do some research in the internet, be it in Indonesian or English. And surprise… surprise! I found a lot of article about the benefit of toothpaste for our face especially if you have acne problem.

It was said that WHITE toothpaste such as PEPSODENT or COLGATE, can help to dry out the acne. But you must not use white toothpaste with blue or pink line or even gel toothpaste such as CLOSE-UP. It was also said DO NOT use WHITENING toothpaste because it contains high levels of hydrogen peroxide that may irritate or burn the skin. So please the ingredient before you buy or apply the white toothpaste in your face!

According to the article that I read, it said that “Toothpaste contains certain ingredients — baking soda-which can be used as a skin exfoliation-, hydrogen peroxide, alcohol, menthol, essential oils, triclosan -which is an antibacterial ingredient that cause pimples to dry out.

White toothpaste mask works just a clay mask. It reduces the excess oil and control the sebum production. But it needs to be noted that  it is actually suggested to apply it on the acne only (NOT WHOLE FACE). Why? It is because toothpaste can dry out your skin and cause irritation.

Pepsodent Therapy [2014: E O]

Pepsodent Therapy [2014: E O]

I have been using the toothpaste mask for three weeks  in my whole face.  I am really satisfied with the result because my skin is smoother, less oily and I don’t have as many acne as I used to do.

So does it mean that I should stop going to dermatologist to treat my acne problem? Honestly I have spent millions rupiah to treat my acne for more than 5 years and it didn’t  work, be it in Indonesia or Singapore. I bought any kind of acne treatment product, it also didn’t work.  Surprisingly enough that  it works with white toothpaste.  But I guess lets see how it works within a month or so.

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Review: Uncle Dogg Show in Jakarta

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Review: American Hustle

American Hustle

American Hustle

Last weekend, I watched American Hustle (2013), an American crime film about two con artists (started by Christian Bale as Irving Rosenfeld and Amy Adams as Sydney Prosser), who were caught by an FBI agent (Bradley Cooper) in loan scams. The FBI agent offered to release the two if only they were willing to help him to  investigate a dirty operation on corrupt politician in the late 1970′s and early 1980′s in USA. 

American Hustle, which won three Golden Awards, is basically a story about ambition, love, loyalty, duplicity, greediness and also corruption. Took the setting in the 1980′s, the movie appeared  pretty classy to me.  However the 138 minutes film soon become pretty boring because it moved pretty slow.

There were three parts of the movie that I like a lot

  1. Irving, who owns a laundry chain in New York and sells stolen art on the other side, met Sydney in a pool party. After Irving, who fall in love with Sydney, told the truth to her that he is a con artist; she accepted him as what he is and agreed to work together. She created a persona as Lady Edith Greensly, a British lady with a banking connection in London. Since they work together, money roll in like a water. As a con artist, Irving believes that most people (prospective clients a.k.a victims) would believe what they want to believe.
  2. It is clear to see that Sydney, who is  a former stripper, has a ambition to get out of poverty, be rich and be somebody’s else. In the middle of the movie, Sydney, who is apparently tired to be somebody’s else, said that she does not want another fake life anymore. “No more fake shit!” she screamed in tears.
  3. While Irving and Sydney  were working for the FBI agent to investigate Mayor Carmine Polito as the part of corruption circle in New Jersey. Somehow, Irving found a genuine friend in Carmine.

I would say that I am not particularly a big fans of action and/or crime film. But there are three lessons to learn from this film, which are

  1. Poverty is not good for anyone but there is always a positive way to get out of it even you would not be rich instantly. So don’t let the greediness manipulate yourself to manipulate other people for your own fortune
  2. Living a fake life is tiring
  3. It’s not easy to find a genuine friend who will accept you as you are so learn to be truthful about yourself.

So have you watched this film? What do you think about it?

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Review: Couchsurfing

La RepublicaFew years ago, I was introduced to courchsurfing.org by a friend of mine, a blogger from multiply.com (I was still active blogging with multiply.com platform back then, too bad that it has been shut down now because I love that platform so much as I have been blogging with that platform since 2005 : ( ).  I found that couchsurfing.org was interesting because I could meet many different kind of people with different kind of stories such as where they have been to, how they saved money for traveling, how much money they spent in certain country, where to stay, listen to their point of view about other cultures, etc. I would say that it is fun.

So in 2009, I decided to sign up and create a profile in couchsurfing.org to get new friends and meet new people from all over the world. Unfortunately, I was not particularly that active because I started my job in Jakarta and did not really have time for myself. My work and the Jakarta traffic made me lazy to attend some gatherings because I was too tired

However luckily, I had the opportunity to meet number of amazing people and young travelers, which opened my eyes about life. I met four European girls, who studied in Singapore in 2010; a 21 Australian boy who has been traveling to 70 countries after he managed to save for two or three years since he was 16 (he didn’t go to senior high school if I was not mistaken); an Italian photographer who stayed in hundreds of couch while he was traveling and many more. Most of them have great story and are very down to earth. 

I was amazed but jealous at the same time with their ability to travel around the world. So why am I jealous? It is not because of their financial flexibility but Indonesian citizen doesn’t really have an easy access visiting a country, especially European, American and also Australian country.

We have to apply for tourist visa, complete a bunch of document, pay a lot of money for the visa with the possibility of losing it if we were rejected. While most of Westerner (Lucky you people!) have the privilege to  come and go visiting the developing country very easy such Indonesia, India, Thailand, Vietnam, etc. Right?!

I actually have a hell lot of things to complain about but I will leave it there because I know that I am luckier than them, who comes from third world country or African country. I am grateful with what I got.

But anyway…. so here I was being profiled by an Italian couchsurfer in La Republica, an Italian newspaper on August 2010. I think I will activate my couchsurfing profile again to find a new activity in 2014.

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