Quote of the Day

“If I live on longer,
shall I again, I wonder,
yearn for these days?
The world that I once saw as
bitter, now, is dear to me!”

– 12th-century waka poem by Lord Fujiwara no Kiyosuke in the Shin Kokinshū, translated by Joshua S. Mostow.


Quote of the Day

“I wanted to sound like an entire record when I played.
You got a sort of vocabulary in your guitar, you know. How to play how you feel. You can sort of express that, kind of voice it without all the hassle of turning it into words or concepts.
Do you know what I mean?

Music’s less, kind of, for me, you don’t have to translate to make a point. Or just, you don’t have to be making a point. You just kind of, like, it’s like turning your daydreams into sound.”

– Johnny Marr, talking about Rickenbacker and his guitar work in The Smiths. Apparently, repeated viewings of him layering the guitar of This Charming Man with a 4-track recorder are good for the soul. Oh, Johnny.

Bim-bom, bim-bim-bom

Around 1956, João Gilberto composed Bim-Bom, one of the first bossa nova songs. His eccentric way of singing and refusal to have a ‘proper’ job upset his family. Deemed mentally unstable, João was sent to Salvador where he went through several psychiatric interviews.

“Look at the wind depilating the trees,” he told one psychiatrist, motioning out the window. “But trees have no hair, João,” she responded, to which João replied, “And there are people who have no poetry.”

He was released a week later.


“Wabi means that even in straitened circumstances no thought of hardship arises. Even amid insufficiency, one is moved by no feeling of want. Even when faced with failure, one does not brood over injustice. If you find being in straitened circumstances to be confining, if you lament insufficiency as privation, if you complain that things have been ill-disposed—this is not wabi.”

– The Zencharoku (Zen Tea Record, 1828)

Quote of the Day

“Let the credulous and the vulgar continue to believe that all mental woes can be cured by a daily application of old Greek myths to their private parts. I really do not care.”

– Nabokov on Freud.

Like Thomson and Thompson or Mac and Cheese

A: how is it that you keep going from one relationship to another?
A: and enduring the same kind of fights over and over again?
B: maybe I’m just stupid
A: or courageous
B: or a fucking idiot
A: or a fucking braveheart
B: well
B: it’s because of that high
A: what high?
B: that high feeling
B: being in love
A: ah
A: and the low feeling?
B: unfortunately, they go hand in hand

(…or Pinky and the Brain or Mulder and Scully or pre-divorce Sonny and Cher or Beavis and Butthead or or pre-Keene Act Rorschach and Nite Owl II* or pre-breakup/post-reunion Simon and Garfunkel or Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde or Dr. Jekyll and Ms. Hyde**)

*apparently Rorschach and Nite Owl II slash fictions exist in this world, to which I say, in the words of film-version Nite Owl II, “NOOOOOOOO!”

**awful 90s comedy home video that tainted my childhood innocence

Quote of the Day

“I wasn’t born this way. One creates oneself. I believe whatever I dream. Whatever I dream, I want to do.”

– (Ladies and gentlemen, Miss) Grace Jones.

Quote of the Day

“I learned early that crying out in protest could accomplish things. My older brothers and sister had started to school when, sometimes, they would come in and ask for a buttered biscuit or something and my mother, impatiently, would tell them no.

But I would cry out and make a fuss until I got what I wanted.
I remember well how my mother asked me why I couldn’t be a nice boy like Wilfred; but I would think to myself that Wilfred, for being so nice and quiet, often stay hungry. So early in life, I had learned that if you want something, you had better make some noise.”

The Autobiography of Malcolm X: As Told to Alex Haley
Bought this book secondhand for only Rp 10.000 (cheapskate, I am) around two weeks ago. So far, it’s been a real page-turner, rising on top of all those unfinished books in my reading list.

Quote of the Day

“Do you smoke? If you want to be a good photographer, if you want to be, let’s say, a good lawyer, if you want to be really good at anything, you have to be addicted to what you do. I am addicted to photography as I am addicted to cigarettes.”

– Said Adi Weda, a guest lecturer in class today, when asked about tips for being a successful photojournalist. He is an Indonesian photographer working in EPA (European Pressphoto Agency), after having worked before in AFP. Rephrased for clarity and dramatic effect.

Quote of the Day

“…and man is nothing else but a construction of his – limited, underdeveloped, and definitively stupid – imagination of himself in its relation to universe.”
(Feb. 12, 2009)

Dedy Nur Hidayat. Professor DNH, as he is widely known, passed away yesterday. Though I have always deeply respected him, I regret not knowing him better in person. It is very touching and beautiful how his kindness and brilliant mind have moved so many people. A great person and a great educator. Rest in peace, Prof. Dedy. May your legacy live on.



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