Thursday, June 14, 2007

Tracing the past

Couple days ago in a chilly night i sat down at one of stairs in my backyard having a fag. Cigarette smoke and a mug of long black were only my loyal company. After 10 minutes i enjoyed my serenity i began to question why am i here and how could i be here right now. When you start thinking of your being, there is a tendency to look back at some moments from which you could make great leaps into the future. One of the moments have something to do with your obsessions or dreams. Whether they are in your grip or not, no doubt they are essential to determine which direction your life will head toward.

Having pondered these moments, i recalled my dreams in the past. It was quite brutal i would say as though i just pulled them out and chucked them on the floors and began to enjoy this self-observation.

Once i was dying to be a guitarist. Nearly two years, the only thing that floated around my head was the obsession of being a guitarist. I hung out a lot with some dudes whom i thought were perfect guru for me. The risk was that i can get easily immersed in things. So i picked up the created-images as musicians such as long hair, alcohol, drugs as a package of truth. I grew my hair regardless my parents' mouth foaming because my bogen hair style. I popped pills, smoked join and stayed up all nights at music studio. Youth Gone Wild once Sabastian Bach of Skid Row proclaimed.

I was in a band two times. One was super amateur and happy enough with glam rocks' ballad and TOP 40's song. More Than Words, Creep and To Be With You were amongst our repertoire. To Be With You was kind of my signature song actually. Normally teenage girls are impressed and fascinated with band boys. But that canon did not work for me even though i tried hard to impress them with my hyper average guitar skills. I have another band later on but this one was more into hardrock such as Bon Jovi. The drummer was the owner of music studio. When the equipments were hired we normally prepared ourselves and tried to have a word with the organiser if we could play some tune on stage. First gig was awful as we didn't get a chance to perform. But we went on and said: fuck it. Let's do it. It was quite embarrassing actually if we realised that we played as the crowd set off the building. Amphetamine kicked in pretty quickly and gave nothing than an excitement feeling of being a superstar (I stopped this habit ages ago). Once it finished, i wished i could say to my self: superstar my arse!

The idea of being a guitar player was slowly out of my head after i left high school. Having another crowd and preoccupied with new environment were some of the reason apart from being told by some guru that i needed to work more as i have some basic skills. Feeling discouraging perhaps.

My next obsession was to be an urban planner. So i went to uni in Jakarta and attempted to major urban planning. I didn't last long there. For two years what i did just hanging around with friends although i successfully submitted my assignment. Another reason why i picked up urban planning was my parents who convinced me this kind of course would be good for my career. It would be easier to get a job when i am graduated and most importantly i was told that i could earn more money. Money was the only way to gauge success. I was actually interested in studying philosophy at that time but my dad said, "What? Are you going to ride a bike for the rest of your life?" What he meant was clear that i couldn't afford to buy anything luxurious except bike.

After two years, i asked myself whether i really wanted to do this. Was money more important than anything else in the planet? These questions drove me mad and I struggled to find satisfying answers. From there, i began to find the answers through philosophy. Maybe i would find them. Having immersed reading profound stuff, i've decided to study philosophy. After a break from uni for about two years, i enrolled philosophy course. My dad was alright with this idea as i told him that he would be free of having responsibility to pay tuition.

Spending my time in a boring school and befriend with priest-wanna-be was one of my routine for two and half years, apart from working as volunteer in a social organisation. I was quite enjoying it actually. Maybe because i can talk bullshit in a very sophisticated way and people could be impressed. The only thing i loathed was to see my uni mates from congregations who liked to wear their coats. No joking, their coats are similar to what secret sect members in Eyes Wide Shut movies wear. Creepy!

Alas, my dream of becoming philosopher ruined as i've met my Australian girlfriend and fled to Sydney. It's not about her that i discontinued my study but something else. After these failures, i dread to dream again sometimes. I thought if i let my life flowing like the water in a small creek it would not be disappointed if something happened in the future against my will. Yet i am not saying that i don't put a lot of effort into what i am aiming now...but just don't want to put high expectations on it cause I like to change my mind pretty often. Inconsistent? No, i would say. I am just getting bored easily with things. Who knows, i might get bored blogging soon...

Here i am now learning to be historian in Australia. If my dad was still alive, i would say: "Dad, you told me that i could only afford to buy a bike if i am studying philosophy. Now i am not a philosopher anymore but a would-be historian and i can't afford to buy a bike." Worse than that...i can't even afford to dream.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Black Males and their sexual myth

How does anyone see black men sexuality? Exotic? Hyper masculine? Perhaps. But one thing that black men are often associated with is their size and sexual capability. Many already rubbish such claim that size is rather important to get sexually satisfied than anything else. And more than dozens would go deeper into this superficial perspective when they see black men sexuality. Yet, it seems that wild, exotic and big size are still attached to people sexual whimsy.

Let's takes example in porn industry. Under the category of interracial sex, black men are partnered with blonde girls or viva versa. Their skin colour and body features are believed to have been sexually appealing and potent. This notion was rather new i think. It came along with imperialism and the idea of white supremacy.

I am not sure what makes such representation prevails. But i assume that the answer of such question could be traced back in history.

About a century ago, white women who went to colonies where most black people lived were strictly disallowed to mix with black men. For instance, study of John Pape about sexual regulation in Zimbabwe revealed that imprisonment was imposed to those engaged in interracial sex under a law which has passed in early 20th century. White women would be sentenced 2 years whereas black men will serve 5 years imprisonment. Meanwhile, white men either missionaries or traders had non-marriage relationship with local women. The reason was that they saw black men as such a threat to the purity (beauty) of whiteness which was represented through the women bodies. Their physical strength and athletic feature were suitable for force labor, but also might have shaped the creation of images of black men sexuality.

What interesting about the law, i think is somewhat telling the crisis of white men masculinity. The physical strength of black males threatened white men masculinity. They may have feared that black insatiable sexual desire would put any white women in danger. By passing such law, they enabled to emphasise stronger the power relationship between white and black through race and gender.

Study of Gary L Davis and Herbert J Cross (Sexual Stereotyping of Black Males in Interracial Sex) offered an interesting point as their research showed that undergraduate students linked black males with large size and sexual potency. This research could also tell us that educated people are still holding a belief of black sexuality. It may be fair to assume that the representation of black sexuality was influenced by the politics of differences carried out by colonial power.

Here i am not saying that this myth is a primary motivation for those who engage in interracial relationship. What i am saying here is that the myth does exist in white society. It even becomes one of sexual fantasies. In term of sex, sometimes we tend to try something which is seen taboo by popular norms. What is forbidded is always sweet once Nietzsche said. And having sex with black people is perhaps sweet whimsy.

Next time i will try to post about Asian fetish...

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Let It Be

I like the Beatles and so are many people in the world. I could happily sing along when i hear any song from this Liverpool's boys playing either in shopping centre or anywhere else. As the Beatles fan, i would not be as clever as the judge in England who delivered the verdict using songs from the Beatles.

As quoted from Dailymirror, the judge was handling the case of stealing. Gregory Todd used 21 Beatles songs in his verdict. Check out his brilliant work.

But Montana's Judge Gregory R Todd, 56, went one better by replying: "Hey Jude, Do You Want To Know A Secret? The greatest band in history spelled its name B-e-a-t-l-e-s.

"Your response suggests there should be no consequences for your actions and I should Let It Be so you can live in Strawberry Fields Forever.

"Such reasoning is Here, There And Everywhere. It does not require a Magical Mystery Tour of interpretation to know The Word means leave it alone. I trust we can all Come Together on that meaning.

"If I were to overlook your actions I would ignore that Day In The Life on April 21, 2006. That night you said to yourself I Feel Fine while drinking beer. Later, whether you wanted Money or were just trying to Act Naturally you became the Fool On The Hill.

"As Mr Moonlight at 1:30am you did not Think For Yourself but just focused on I, Me, Mine. Because you didn't ask for Help, Wait for Something else, or listen to your conscience saying Honey Don't, the victim was later Fixing A Hole in the glass door you broke. After you stole the beer you decided it was time to Run For Your Life and Carry That Weight. But the witness said Baby It's You, the police said I'll Get You and you had to admit You Really Got A Hold On Me.

"You were not able to Get Back home because of the Chains they put on you. Although you hoped the police would say I Don't Want To Spoil The Party and We Can Work It Out you were in Misery when they said you were a Bad Boy. When they took you to jail you experienced Something New they said Hello Goodbye and you became a Nowhere Man.

Later you may have said I'll Cry Instead. Now you are saying Let It Be instead of I'm A Loser. As a result of your Hard Day's Night you are looking at a Ticket To Ride that Long And Winding Road to prison.

"Hopefully you can say both now and When I'm 64 that I Should Have Known Better."

Imagine if the defendant is aU2 fan, his reply might be like this:

I know i've made a mistake and I WILL FOLLOW whatever you've said. This is ONE moment that i will always remember about how BAD i was and i will not have PRIDE of it. When i stole that beer, DESIRE of doing it was stronger. My common sense could not work as if it was NUMB. I was completely lost like a traveller stuck in town WHERE THE STREETS HAVE NO NAME.

Then the police came and say: ALL I WANT IS YOU. The police arrival gave my no choice but my SURRENDER.

Soon i come out of the prison, i will be STARING AT THE SUN only to see that a BEAUTIFUL DAY is waiting for me. Although I HAVEN'T FOUND WHAT I AM LOOKING FOR, but that won't make me finding it in MYSTERIOUS WAYS.