Yesterday was my last day of internship at AARP The Magazine (Yes, I finally wrote that forbidden word and before I publish this post, I’m going to put AARP as one of the tag).

Owh, most of you probably do not know why AARP is such a forbidden word on my blog. The reason is because I used to be one of their interns and we, and when I say we that means all employees, contractors, etc., are not supposed to mention (almost) anything about the company on our personal blog. They have this alert that will tell them everything that says AARP. It’s not something uncommon in a big company like AARP. So, I should I understand that. But, because I’m so out of there right now, I can say whatever I want. And I guarantee you, I’ll be honest here. Ready??

***

I LOVE my internship.There is nothing not to love about being an intern at AARP The Magazine. I know, you probably think, “So, you like working with old people?” or “Do you write about your grandma and grandpa?” Well, it’s not that bad to research on topics that appeal to that age group. I wouldn’t know that you could actually improve you eyesight just by believing that you could see better, if I didn’t research on deteriorating vision .

But, what I like most about this internship are the staff. Especially, my supervisor. I know most of you are familiar with one of those supervisors who thinks that you are JUST an intern. But not my supervisor. He is the sweetest supervisor EVER. He doesn’t talk down to me, he said thank you all the time, and of course, he always said please when he asked me a favor.

I kind of have different expectations when I entered The Magazine, but I can’t always get what I want right? I mean, how could I expect five bylines if I can’t even think of the word “minutiae” instantly and always use the word “detail” instead.

Anyways, I met the nicest people during my internship. The editors always have their door opened for questions and ideas. They also treated me like I’m smarter than I actually am. They talked to me like I was born American. They really did treat me nicely and never looked down on me (see! I can’t think of another expression for “look down”). LOL. OK. Let’s put it this way, they treated me like, uhm… let’s say reliable adult??

So, yeah, I think the most valuable thing about my internship is the fact that I could meet and work with these awesome people. I can learn about where to put commas by reading a writing manual. I can do research in an instant on Google. But, I can’t meet these people if I went somewhere else for the internship.

Everyone was very helpful. There’s one day when I really need help with the archive and this lady (whose name I’m not going to mention) helped me find all the stuff that I was looking for and she actually stopped what she’s doing and showed me all the things that I needed. She didn’t look like she was in a hurry at all. I could tell that she was VERY VERY OK with helping me.

Also, as an intern, I was included in many of their stuff. At my previous intern site, interns were not part of meetings AT ALL. Here, at AARP The Magazine, interns are always going to be invited for regular meetings. So, interns learn the process of publishing an issue. I mean, at least interns know enough about the publication. Which intern wants to be clueless all the time? EXACTLY. Not here.

And you know what else I like? My supervisor never referred me as an intern on the phone. My supervisor always said, “Awis here will transfer you to the right person,” or “Awis will send you the issues.” I think it’s really cool because I felt like I was treated equally with the rest of the people in there. It’s a great feeling.

Bottom line… no one should be worried about what I’m going to say here in the first place. There’s zero negative thing to blab about here. Cool??

It’s nice that I don’t have to commute from Towson, MD to Washington, DC during rush hour ever again. But, it’s sad that I won’t be seeing these good people anymore. On my last day, when I said good bye to them, I literally had to hold a little bit of tears. I’m glad that I’m done but I just couldn’t believe that it’s over. =(

But, I’ll make sure to stay in touch with them. Maybe one day I’ll come back to America. Or maybe, one of them will travel to Indonesia. Who knows?

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I have always been a necklace-admirer. I have a small but pretty good necklace collection right now. Many of them used to belong to my mother and were handed down to me. I have to say my taste in necklace was influenced by my mother’s. She likes big necklaces with big stones or silver and bronze metals. She likes her necklaces to have beads that are un-identical because each of them were carved by hands. She buys her necklaces from odd places like a traditional market in Tanzania or a village in Borneo; she definitely does not go to Frank & Co. (she goes there only when she needs bling bling for a wedding that she doesn’t really want to attend but she just have to).

Because of those reasons above, I like necklaces that she likes too. Now, almost all my necklaces were made of non-gold material and no diamonds necessary.

Now, thanks to Style Bubble for giving me the knowledge about this limited edition jewelry by Muqliza Imroni, I have added a new necklace to my small collection. When I saw Style Bubble’s blog post about Sou Brette, which is a jewelry line established in 2005, I know I’m kind of behind ;), I immediately called my mom back in Indonesia and asked her to send me one. Of course, my mom said, “OK,” because I know she likes it too.

This morning the necklace arrived… take a look.

Sou Brette by Muqliza Imroni

taken from: shockya.com/ click for source

I have so many things in my mind right now. I have no idea what to say about this movie. Oh well, I guess “F@$#-ing awesome” are two perfect words to describe this movie.

I have never been this excited since JJ Abram’s Start Trek. Truthfully, I’m not a comic book nerd -not there’s anything wrong with that- and I have no idea what Kick-Ass was until last winter I believe, when I saw the trailer. I couldn’t wait since then.

Basically, Kick-Ass is about a kid named Dave Lizewski who dreams about being a super hero. Having himself mugged by gang kids many times, he wonders why can’t someone in this world stand up and defend the good guys from bad guys. So, he decided to buy a wet suit, make a mask and fight crimes.

He didn’t do very well in the beginning. I mean, he is just an invisible kid in high school who hangs out at a comic books store. He doesn’t have that many friends and no girl wants him (some romance in the movie but don’t feel like talking about it). He has no charm for girls, let alone super power. But, he got the guts and will. Who knows right? Those guts landed him on YouTube which later made him very famous.

In the movie, he was not bitten by a spider though, so he did not instantly become strong or know kung fu. Instead, his life was saved by Hit Girl and Big Daddy. I have to say this movie should be titled Hit Girl instead of Kick-Ass but Aaron Johnson’s cuteness had me on the defense that I think Kick-Ass as a title is OK.

Hit Girl, played by Chloë Grace Moretz, is basically the real super hero in this movie. Her way of fighting crimes always involve jabbing on the nose, stabbing, cutting and shooting (read: blood). All thanks to Big Daddy, her father played by Nicolas Cage, for not putting her in regular school but instead home schooling her by teaching her how to use deadly weapons. This movie is bloody, but in a good way. I guess what I meant was this movie is well made so the bloodiness does not look cheap at all. The director, Matthew Vaughn, also did a great job in moving this movie along so viewers are always on it and not get bored easily. The action parts are not all over the place. The movie is not a bombardment of kicking and punching but it actually tells a story.

And although Hit Girl seems to be the one with the real super hero ability, the movie stresses enough that Kick-Ass was the string of the movie. He was the one who brings all the characters together so they could finish their business.

I have to say my favorite character is Hit Girl. Why? Because she says all the dirty words and she gets things done. She’s bad-ass. I mean, which little girl would take three bullets from her daddy just to get ice cream afterwards?  I think Hit Girl character gets all the good lines, like “I’m just fuckin’ with you, daddy.”  Her potty mouth deserves an award.

However, Kick-Ass would not be forgotten because he is the cutest thing ever. Forget about Robert Pattinson! This lad, Aaron Johnson deserves 10 stars hotness rating. Who could resist those eyes and lips? Maybe 10 stars are not enough.

Red Mist has not received the spotlight this time. But, Cristopher Mintz-Plasse did a great job playing this character. He actually has more chances now to not be called McLovin all the time. He sets the character Red Mist as him. From now on, Red Mist is him and if replaced it would be odd. Red Mist is definitely not like Superman, a character that could be played by any guy with square face and dark hair color, because of Mintz-Plasse. I would call him the Red Mist guy from now on.

Bottom line… GO SEE THE MOVIE!

For full cast click here

When I was working at the library this afternoon, my buddy Niken from Houston, Texas, texted me and said, “G pngn shopping deh. Pngn ganti style gt lochhh.” (Note: that sentence was taken verbatim from the text. And yes, she used triple “h.”) Btw, the sentence means, “I want to burn my closet down because I hate my clothes.” *wink*

So, I asked her, “What’s wrong with your clothes?” Because honestly she dresses awesomely and almost always dress to “shut it down” <– inspired by Rachel Zoe. I mean really, she’s fashion conscious enough to not wear tennis shoes to hang out, or to not wear big (fake) gold earrings that has her name carved on it *wink* OR to not exploit the use of sweatpants and pajamas. Plus, I’m not really the person to ask about fashion because my closet looks more like a man’s locker than Carrie Bradshaw‘s walking closet.

However, I think this could be a good way to kill time until my shift is over. So, I took Niken’s statement as a 30-minute project and here you go Niken:

  • From what I’m seeing on Style.com, spring is all about flowers and COLOURS <– imagine a British male model pronouncing that word. Aaarrrggh, so sexy! Anyways, you might want to add some colours to your collection. I think, for you, you could add more colours on your accessories or shoes. Have you ever seen the flowery lace-up sandals at Urban Outfitters? Get that!! Or, you could get the American Apparel’s Amanda shoes. Pick the ones with brighter colour though. I’m getting a pair too!
  • Harem pants are everywhere! AND, denim too! So, you might want to buy a pair of Harem pants in gray, medium denim, or military colour.
  • Patterns!!! Have you ever wished that you have unlimited $$$$$$$ to buy stuff with famous names on the tags? <– I meant designers stuff. Well, you don’t have to spend $$$$$$$$$$ on pattern-play dresses or bottoms this time. You could wear our lovely batik or make something out of kain tenun Toraja. From what I’m seeing the colourful kain tenun Toraja is similar to the pattern used on Trussardi 1911 suede beaded bag.

NOTE: But, when you have the money (when I have the money) definitely get this bag!!!

Trussardi (click pic for image source)

My shift is over… to be continued?? Maybe??

I made a trip to National Aquarium in Baltimore with a few friends yesterday. It was quiet a “fishy” day. Because, we ate at Bertha’s Mussels afterward and each of us left with a stomach full of sea creatures – cooked of course! I took some pictures with my lame camera (planning to get a good one soon though). And this morning when I woke up, I made these…

Spring 2010 Trend from Style.com - Louise Gray

Spring 2010 Trend from Style.com - Alexander McQueen

Spring 2010 Trend from Style.com - Fendi

Runway photos were taken from Style.com. Others were taken by moi.

So, I have spent a lot of time reading some fashion blogs and I came across a lot of “New York” on many of the posts. Well, the countless mention of that culturally diverse, awesome, crowded, polluted, stylish, full-of-character city made me want to check out my friend’s band, Jirapah, on MySpace; not that I have forgotten about them.

According to MySpace, Jirapah is a Rock/Pop/Indie band. If I have to name a genre to describe this band, I have to say “I’m not sure.” All I know is, the guitar, bass and drum are not in sync, but for some reason they manage to create dreamy/odd songs; the odd part is not a bad thing though. When I listen to Jirapah, I get the Oh-I-Just-Want-to-Lie-Down-and-Stare-at-the-Ceiling type of feeling, which is perfect for a very hard working individual like moi.  I REALLY NEED a moment (actually a lot of moments) to chill and to daydream.

I may seem ordinary and normal…AND boring but my brain wonders about peculiar stuff sometimes. Like now! I just listened to Jirapah and all I could imagine about is the Weather Underground. LOL. *I Love Peace*

Wanted, taken from: terroristplanet.com

Protest, taken from: eviltwinbooking.org

Bernardine Dohrn, taken from: austinchronicle.com

When you have to read hundreds of letters and make a report… you tend to experience what most people called “Sleepiness” or worse, “Headache.” So, when those two things happen to me… I open this blog

my mid-day obsession...

By the time the snow stopped falling. My neighbors, Danur and I walked outside and checked out the situation. Danur and a neighbor made pathway for Muttley and my neighbor’s dog, Boss.

At times like this, you have two options, be miserable or just go with it and make the best out of it. Danur and I chose the second option. It is after all, nature, and you can’t fight nature. You just have to deal with it – I know it’s not the easiest thing to do.

Danur got a chance to work together with the neighbor and they actually had a medium-length conversation, I would say. If it’s not because of the blizzard, that’s not going to happen.

I, as a girlfriend, got a chance to help Danur clearing the snow on his car and around it. I mean, I showed him that I’m not always a brat. If it’s not because of the blizzard, I’ll be a brat – like usual.

But let me tell you what made me feel a lot better amidst the horrible weather condition. Most people in the neighborhood are actually “making lemonade out of lemon that was given by life.” They were not complaining. They were not miserable. They’re actually having fun and laughing together. Take a look.

People trying to make rail for snowboarding.

So, what do you want to be? A miserable person or a fun one. I suggest, be a fun one. You know why? Because the snow is not going anywhere, anytime soon.

Happy snowed in! Or out!

When I woke up this morning, the snow in front of my apartment has reached almost 26 inches. When I stepped on it, half of my legs were buried – note that I’m a very short person. So I thought, “This got to be a very hard day for me and other dog owners.”

But, because of my huge love for my puppy, Muttley, the blizzard (yes, blizzard, I said) would not be a reason for me not to take Muttley out. So, just like any other day, I put on my winter jacket, a really warm sweatpants and a pair of snow boots. And for the first time in my life I walked around outside DURING a blizzard. It was not a bad thing at all because when I think about it again, I am lucky for having to experience one of the snow-related histories in the United States. According to forecasters, this could be the heaviest snowfalls that Washington and the surrounding states have seen.

However, despite my optimistic and grateful attitude, this heavy snowfall has caused several weather-related accident in some places already, such as, Wythe County and Maryland.

“This extremely dangerous storm is expected to produce record snowfall for the Baltimore and Washington, D.C., metropolitan areas,” the National Weather Service said. (Taken from CNN.com)

When I was little, I never dreamed of going to any country with four seasons. Let alone experiencing a blizzard. Today, I sat in my room, next to the window and I saw huge snowflakes falling down from the sky. It’s beautiful.

It is unbelievable when I think about the now-and-then of my life. I never thought I could experience anything more than the sand on the beach. But now, I live in the middle of a historical snowfall. I’m not on a vacation. I live here. I live in an apartment, NOT A HOTEL! I’m not leaving anytime soon either, I’ll be here watching the snow melts in spring. And that would be another experience.

Danur and I took Muttley for a walk.

Towson, Maryland

Two weeks ago, I started my internship at AARP the Magazine, Washington D.C. Because I live in Baltimore, the commute is quite a challenge, especially for my boyfriend who drives the car.

We chose to commute by car because the expense would be doubled if we decided to take the train.
Parking at Penn Station : $12
Amtrak to Union Station DC : $14
Metro to Gallery Place : $1.65 (one way)
Well, you get the idea. It’s complicated and expensive.

Anyways, we decided to take the car to get inside Washington, D.C. Usually, my boyfriend drops me off at Farraguth North or Cleveland Metro station. And there, my enjoyable ride begins.

I love riding the Metro. Despite the fact that there’s a chance for me to be trapped inside it with some bad people (like the ones you see in the movies), I love taking the Metro on weekdays in the morning. You know what’s my favorite thing to do when I’m in it?

I like playing guesses. Well, when you’re taking the Metro in the morning, you usually see different kinds of people. So, I like to play guesses in my mind, like, guessing what their jobs are, whom are they going to meet, or even how are they feeling at the moment.

I saw a girl the other day, in the Metro. She’s probably about 19 or 20 years old. She wore black leggings, medium length skirt, and a matching blazer. She accessorized her all-black-look with a maroon scarf. I could tell from her face that she’s very excited. So, I made a guess:

She’s a new intern at one of the government offices and that day, was her first day.

I also saw a young male, who looked very anxious. He wore a pair of skinny pants, a plaid shirt, a grey pea coat and a pair of casual leather shoes. He was holding a folder and he kept reading what’s inside the folder. I paid attention to him five seconds too long. So, he looked back at me and gave me a smile. So, I made a guess:

He’s a very kind teenager-ish male who’s going to a job interview. And, he couldn’t wait to get this part-time job because he would need the money to spoil his girlfriend (once he has one). My guess, he’s the kind of person who’d do anything for the one he loves.

Typically, one trip allows me to guess two persons because the rest of my time, I use it to wonder about what‘s waiting for me at the office.

After a while, two weeks, I feel like I know the people who travel together with me. I’d have a short conversation with them. Nothing serious, just weather or how sleepy we are. One time, a guy offered me his newspaper because he’s done reading it. I mean, that’s random but kind.

When you ride the Metro, you basically share a lot of things with others in it. You share the space, sits, oxygen, and even the worries. Like, when the train is delayed, I’m pretty sure almost everyone in that train is worry about getting late, whether it’s for a meeting, a breakfast or just simply getting to work.

No, they’re not my friends. I don’t even know their names. But, yes, they’re my fellow commuters, the ones whom I share the moment with in the train. So, I’d like to say. Good bye and enjoy the rest of your day.