The kind of food I eat in America

It may come as a surprise to most of the Americans, but yes, people in Asia do wonder what kind of food do Americans eat.

Do Americans really eat burgers and fries and steak as is seen in their McDonald's culture?

Well to tell you the truth, the fast-food is only a partial of what Americans do eat.

Americans do have McD and Starbucks takeouts, but those are mainly limited to around twice a week for ordinary people like most of us (excluding the urban executives, who munch on Subway and drink Starbucks espressos on nigh daily basis).

And as for me, here is an unexhaustive list of my daily diet:

  1. Macaroni and Cheese
  2. Lasagna
  3. Mashed potatoes with grilled meat and kernel corn
  4. Beef stew
  5. Chili soup
  6. Hot dog (Three ways)
  7. Rice with Sweet&Sour Chicken
  8. (bland) Beef/Chicken Noodle

However, unlike their Asian counterparts.... Mind you, all of the above meals I listed are preprocessed and instantly cooked, either with a microwave or a pour of boiled water.


on the Kentucky-KFC association

To my surprise, the people of Kentucky do not know that the rest of the world associates their home state with the KFC restaurant franchise.

They think that Kentucky is well-known outside America for its "hill billy", one term with a definition I haven't quite had a grasp on.

But yes, if you're wondering... That term "hill billy" comes from the Kentucky state.


Indo-lyric: Sendiri Lagi (Beage)

English translation:

Lonely again

Finally I'm alone once more
after passing my days with her
finally I'm musing once more
how this love just went away like that

Never before I've gotten a faithful one
is it because I'm imperfect
it's always me who's at fault
and in the end I'm the one who has to suffer

Again and I'm lonely again
bcoz my lover has gone away
leaving millions of yearnings
which are still buried within

This pain that makes my heart hurt once more
bcoz it goes away and isn't coming back
leaving millions of yearnings
which are still buried within

How sad this love story of mine is
how fragile the state of my heart is
How sad my love journey goes
and finally with all that has happened today

back to Reff

Yearnings which are still buried within

Original lyric in Indonesian:

Akhirnya ku sendiri lagi
Setelah lewati hariku dengannya
Akhirnya ku termenung lagi
Cinta berlalu begitu saja

Tak pernah ku dapat yang setia
Apa karena ku tidak sempurna
Selalu saja aku yang salah
Dan akhirnya aku yang menderita

Lagi dan akhirnya ku sendiri lagi
Karena kekasihku yang pergi
Meninggalkan sejuta kerinduan
Yang masih terpendam

Perih yang membuat hatiku sakit lagi
Karena pergi dan tak kembali
Meninggalkan sejuta kerinduan
Yang masih terpendam

Sedih kisah cintaku ini
Rapuh hatiku saat ini
Sedih jalan cintaku ini
Dan akhirnya yang terjadi kini

kembali ke Reff

Kerinduan yang masih terpendam


Lack of ethical code in American commercials

One blatant thing I notice from American commercials is their lack of ethical code.

In Indonesia, it is unethical for shampoo commercial of A company to make a mockery out of shampoo B.

Hence, if the A company wants to make a product comparison, they have to totally blur the image or logo of the B company due to ethical reasons.

But in America, such a mockery is completely fine.

Let me mention some real examples here.

I have seen a commercial on TV of several guys eating on the same table... Several of them eating a $5 meal combo of KFC, while one is eating $5 Subway sandwich.

That one guy who is eating a $5 Subway (and obviously had to pay more for his drinks and fries) was obviously made fun of. The commercial then ended with the catchy line of "Taste the UnSUB side of KFC".

Find it hard to believe? Then google it.

There are also multiple examples of insurance commercials of Allstate, Geico and Statefarm pitting themselves against one another in terms of which one is the most economical insurance company.

I thought the American ethical code (and law) is tough, but apparently, what is permissible in one society may not be acceptable in another.


Diet recommendations for different blood types

In his book, Eat Right 4 Your Type, naturopath Peter D’Adamo prescribes diet, exercise and lifestyle plans for each of the four blood groups. Based on the theory that all food contains lectins that are compatible or incompatible with each blood type, the diet recommends that certain foods should be included and others avoided in order to minimise negative reactions to lectins.

Blood Type A – The Cultivator

For A Blood types, a suggested diet would be a predominantly vegetarian diet including soy, grains, fruits and vegetables.

However, type As have particularly sensitive digestive systems and should try to maintain a fresh and organic diet.

They should avoid dairy products and red meat.

In addition, Type As should engage in gentle and calming exercises such as golf, yoga and tai chi.

Blood Type B – The Nomad

Those with the B blood type have relatively tolerant digestive systems and can enjoy almost all foods including dairy, meat, eggs and vegetables.

Grains, lentils, nuts, tomatoes and processed foods should, however, be avoided.

It is recommended for Type Bs to take moderate exercise that requires mental balance, such as hiking, swimming, tennis and cycling.

Blood Type AB – The Enigma

Type AB’s dietary and exercise requirements are a hybrid of type A and type B requirements.

Its diet especially recommends seafood.

It is also suggested that tofu, dairy foods such as yoghurt, and green vegetables are beneficial. Type ABs also should eat smaller, more frequent meals.

Those of blood type AB have a long list of foods that should be avoided including chicken, beef and pork as well as smoked or cured meat. Also on the to-avoid list are beans, corn, wheat and seeds, as well as caffeine and alcohol.

Like type As, type ABs are recommended to take calming exercises.

Blood Type O – The Hunter

It is recommended that those with the O blood type eat foods high in protein such as red meat, fish and poultry.

They should also include fruits and vegetables in their diet.

However, they should avoid grains, breads, legumes and beans as well as dairy products, caffeine and alcohol.

The health regime for O types includes vigorous exercises such as aerobics, running and contact sports.


Peanut butter cup

Here, I've developed a new craving. For Reese's Peanut butter cup.

I wonder why they don't have it in Indonesia.


Why Americans only speak one language

In America, if you are able to speak more than one language (in this case, English) fluently, then you are sure to strike an awe in most of the people here.

But that's simply because their first language is English in the first place. Having known that their own native language is a globally recognised lingua franca, they feel no need to study other languages than their own.


Loud music on Blacks

One thing I notice about cars driven by Black Americans (whether they're African or Jamaican descent) is that most of them have loud music.

And I really mean a loud one, which attracts attention from other drivers and pedestrians.


Trip durations

During my entire trip from Jakarta (Indonesia) to Miami (FL, USA), I happened to take note of the exact trip duration down to the exact minute...from taking off in one airport to touching down in the next.

The following note has also eliminated any length of taxiing or technical delays, hence could prove to be more or less accurate duration.

Jakarta-Batam = 1 hours, 10 minutes (with Sriwijaya Air)
Batam-Singapore = 50 minutes (with Penguin ferry)
Singapore-Tokyo = 5 hours, 20 minutes (with Japan Airlines)
Tokyo-Los Angeles = 9 hours, 20 minutes (with American Airlines)
Los Angeles-Miami = 4 hours, 25 minutes (with American Airlines)


Indo-lyric: Aku cinta dia (Gita Gutawa)

English translation:

I love him

When you passed by
in front of my house, with all that style
I was so preoccupied with you to the point of getting bewitched
who are you, I wanna know quick

this flowery heart
on the first sight
oh God please help
I love, I love him

where do you live
what's your name, tell me
I wanna get to know you, accept my greetings
your face and your style, brought into my dreams
me, has been drunk with love

Original lyric in Indonesian:

di saat kau berjalan
di muka rumahku, penuh gaya
tersita pandanganku hingga ku terpesona
siapakah dirimu hatiku ingin tahu segera

hati yang berbunga
pada pandangan pertama
oh Tuhan tolonglah
aku cinta, ku cinta dia

di manakah rumahmu
siapakah namamu, sebutkanlah
kuingin berkenalan, terimalah salamku
gayamu dan wajahmu, terbawa dalam mimpi
diriku, dimabuk asmara


Devoid of meaning

The following text is originally lifted from

  • Orange, month, and purple are the only words in English that don't have another word that rhymes with it.
  • The clown fish has the ability to change its sex. If a breeding female dies, the male fish will change its sex and mate with another male.
  • 70% of the poor people in the world are female.
  • A chicken once had its head cut off and survived for over eighteen months, headless.
  • The number one fear of Americans is public speaking. Number two is death.
  • 50% of female polar bears also have a penis.
  • When the divorce rate goes up in the United States, toy makers report that the sale of toys also rise.
  • The Declaration of Independence was written on hemp (marijuana) paper.
  • A female donkey's milk is closest to human milk.
  • An average person farts 16 times a day.
  • It only takes 7 pounds of pressure to rip your ear off
  • Humans and dolphins are the only animals whom have sex for pleasure.
  • Annually, the amount of garbage that is dumped in the world's oceans is three times the weight of fish that is caught from the oceans.
  • By age 20 we lose 20% of our sense of smell. By age 60 it is 60%
  • The most overdue book in the world was borrowed from Sidney Sussex College in Cambridge, England and was returned 288 years later.
  • Dueling is legal in Paraguay as long as both parties are registered blood donors.
  • Shakespeare invented the word 'assassination' and 'bump'.
  • The brain continues sending electrical wave signals for 37 hours after death
  • 45% of Americans don't know that the sun is a star.
  • Every year approximately 2,500 left-handed people are killed by using object or machinery designed for right-handed people.
  • In ancient Rome, when a man testified in court he would swear on his testicles.


on Hiring in USA

Most American companies put up a sign like this on their hiring policy:

X company does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, color, ethnic or national origin in its admission or hiring policies....

Yeah right. Those American companies and their bullshit.

What's with their non-nationality-discriminating status? I wonder, would any American company located in Denver willingly hire an Afghanistan national as one of their employees?

Would any American company willingly hire a Sikh with turban?

They should reconsider those basic issues themselves, because till these days, racism and discriminatory acts do prevail in American corporations.


The IE6 legacy in USA

One thing I notice about public computers in America --whether it's in the government offices, libraries, or offices-- is the fact that IE6 legacy really prevails here.

Everyone loves IE6. Gee, I wonder why...perhaps due to its simplicity?

It couldn't even provide a tabbed browsing experience, for one.


Where is the restroom?

"Excuse me sir, can you tell me where the toilet is?" I asked a security guard in Southern Miami.

"a what?"

I spoke a bit louder, "Toilet. Where's the toilet?"

"Sorry I don't get you..a what?"

Then I articulated slowly, with my voice louder "To-i-let. Can you tell me where the toilet is?"

"What's that?" he looked dumbfounded.

On the next second it struck me.

"Ah! Restroom! Can you tell me where the restroom is?"

"It's right down this hallway, turn left and go to the second floor..."

What a buffoonery. Being educated with British English my entire life, it would still take quite a while before I could speak the same language with Americans, haha.

Americans don't use the word "toilet". They use "toilet bowl" for the lid you're s(h)itting on, but they use the word "restroom" for the actual room that they go to when they have a call of nature.


Indo-lyric: Salah (Cokelat)

English translation:


My effort to ward off the feelings
of the desires tormenting the soul
you made me tortured

[hooww wooouuu...]
weak I am weak

Is it wrong
if I don't stop desiring him
[hooww woouuu...]
though in the end
I know he'll only made me hurt

Original lyric in Indonesian:

Usahaku menepis rasa
Rindu yang mendera jiwa
Kau buat aku tersiksa

[hooww wooouuu...]
Lemahku lemah
Tak berdaya

Salahkah bila
Ku tak henti mengharapkannya
[hooww woouuu...]
Meskipun akhirnya
Ku tahu dia hanya membuatku terluka


I've been to nine countries

At a young age of 19, I've been to nine countries. Quite an achievement, I daresay. Haha.

Here are those countries, in chronological order since my birth. The age when I first stepped foot on the country follows in parentheses.

  1. USA (Age 0)
  2. Suriname (Age 2)
  3. Indonesia (Age 3)
  4. Singapore (Age 6)
  5. England (Age 6)
  6. Bahamas (Age 6)
  7. Vietnam (Age 15)
  8. Malaysia (Age 16)
  9. Japan (Age 19)


Amuses and Muses (1)

by Catherine Lim

… Amuses

A psychiatrist conducting a test
Drew a picture of a sun;
His patient studied it and said,
'Wow! A couple having fun!'

The psychiatrist then drew a table
And beside it added a chair;
The patient said, 'By golly, look,
They're doing it in mid-air!'

A stick, a circle, a tree, a cat
An apple, a steeple, a door;
The patient saw only sexy stuff
And kept asking for more.

Said the psychiatrist very sternly,
'You are preocuppied with sex;
Your mind's in an unhealthy state,
It's like you are under a hex.'

'Who, me?' protested the patient,
'Hey, Doctor, cease your lectures;
Just tell me who's been drawing
All those lovely dirty pictures?'

… Muses

Money the root of all evil?
The guy who said that was clueless;
For money is the sixth sense,
Without which the five are useless!


Indonesian election and Jacko's funeral

In Indonesia these two headlines above make two news of equal parallel.

First thing first: the election.

Well done Indonesians, well done.

It is just such a disappointment that the Lapindo mud affairs would never get finished with this president. He befriends corrupt people such as one of his ministers (hint: starts with 'B') who eats up the country's coffers yet gives little.

Where's the promise that Lapindo mud victims would get those 80% compensations? Those folks are all shit and little else.

Suramadu bridge project was JK's idea, while KPK was founded during Mega's. SBY acquired much more foreign debts than during Mega's term.

What a choice for a president.

Now on the late legend, there's one thing I'd like to comment. In Indonesia it made quite a news that Michael Jackson was going to have an Islamic funeral.



Perhaps those Indonesians who reported such news should have their faith double-checked...are they really Muslims?

Because one thing I know for sure is that Islamic funeral is a ceremonial conducted within 24 hours after one's death.

Anyway... It may have been a bit late, yes, but may his soul rest in peace... He had had an unhappy life despite bringing the world a new sense of peace with his songs.

A legendary musician indeed.


Indo-lyric: Lagi dan lagi (Andra&The Backbone)

English translation:

Again and again

I was wrong
it was unacceptable of me
forgive me for all

that has happened
would not return
now I'm alone once more

coz you don't deserve
to get hurt again and again...
sliced again sliced again...

coz you don't deserve
to get hurt again and again....
coz I've passed the limits
of paining you again and again...
and I was unable to put a cease...

coz you don't deserve
to turn me
now I'm alone once more
with nobody to accompany
and don't return....

Original lyric in Indonesian:

Aku memang salah
aku memang hina
maafkanlah untuk semua

apa yang terjadi
tak mungkin kembali
kini ku sendiri lagi

karna kau memang tak pantas
tersakiti lagi dan lagi….
teriris lagi tercabik lagi…

karna kau memang tak pantas
tersakiti lagi dan lagi….
karna kulewati batas
melukai lagi dan lagi….
dan aku tak bisa tuk mengakhiri…

karna kau memang tak pantas
buat diriku ini
tak tau diri
kini ku sendiri lagi
tak ada yang menemani
dan jangan kembali….


Time zones

For the differing time zones which are relevant to me and you my readers (most of whom reside in western part of Indonesia), I have put up two digital clocks on my blog sidebar.


Women: A chemical analysis

A tongue-in cheek e-mail

Element: Woman
Symbol: Wo
Discoverer: Adam
Atomic mass: Accepted as 53.6 kg but can range from 40kg-200kg
Occurrence: Copious quantities in all urban areas
Physical properties:

  • Boils at nothing, freezes with no known reason
  • Bitter if incorrectly used
  • Found in various states, ranging from virgin metal to common ore

Chemical properties:

  • Absorbs great quantities of expensive substances
  • May explode without warning
  • Most powerful money-reducing agent known to man

Common uses:

  • Highly ornamental
  • Can be great aid to relaxation

Potential hazards:

  • Illegal to possess more than one
  • Highly dangerous, even in experienced hands

General advice:

  • Avoid contact wherever possible as cures can be expensive!


Watering the leaves

When I was a small kid, I used to think that the most vital part of a plant is its leaves.

Hence every time Mom ask me to water the yard for her, I took a meticulous care (yes, I suffer from OCD) to water the plants’ leaves one by one.

And it left the roots with little options other than the drippings from above.


Only found in Indonesia: Food stalls located beside garbage dumps

One of the main oddities of Indonesia (or perhaps in some other developing countries too) is that we have the street side food stalls (commonly called Warteg or Warnas) located just beside garbage dumps.

You don’t need to look far, just have a look at our biggest city here, Jakarta. My apologies for no pictures everyone…but perhaps any of you would like to upload one? I’d appreciate it, and would link to your picture (or blog, if you happen to have one).


When Japanese film actors speak fluent English

I find it odd (and annoying too) for Japanese film actors to speak fluent and coherent English when playing Japanese roles in Western movies. For example, in The Last Samurai or Silk, those Japanese roles speak English fluidly despite the fact that a coherent English is something you would rarely heard from a Japanese’ mouth, even by today’s standards.

Suppose that it’s for the world audience’s understanding. Then why did not the Western actors speak Japanese instead, and putting subtitle in order to be understood?

By speaking English, those historical Japanese (albeit Hollywood-made) movies had lost their real nuance. They gave in what was supposed to be originality for the sake of audience comprehension.


When things get tough...

When things get tough and it seems like there's no longer happiness in limiting communication thru internet means, keep in mind always that Mandela was only allowed one letter every six months.

Which means only four letters in two years. At least we're still having things much better than he had.


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