see through me

A bit of my thoughts about life in general and things that keep it worth living...


Nuit blanche...

I can’t sleep.

You know how annoying is insomnia. It always hits you when you expect the least, when you’re at the peak of your fatigue, when all you desire is a long dreamless sleep… when you don’t want to think about anything in your life.

But no, it ambushes you just like that.

Some say that maybe I have too much thoughts in my mind, some say that my sleeping habit is shifting once again. I don’t know. Maybe it’s just me.

I am quite familiar with insomnia. I had a long friendship with it. It was a love-hate relationship, because sometimes you’ll have to agree that it helps you when you have to meet a deadline or something. But recently, it disturbs me quite a bit.

When you can’t sleep, you do everything to try to close your eyes. The list goes on from drinking milk, watching TV, reading a book to pleasuring yourself. Yes, masturbation is one of the best remedy – I’m sure 90% of you guys will get a good laugh reading this. Sans shame I admit I do all of the above, but niet… me no win.

So I start to think about all that happened or would happen in my life, you know, sort of self-analysis, being a cheap shrink for self.

And I was surprised.

My life had taken many different turns these last months. So many things did happen to me, so many unexpected crossroads that I’ve taken, so many people that I met… and after all these times, so many things I didn’t even give thoughts about.

After those thoughts hit me, my inability to sleep actually helped me to ponder a thing or two. I was able to sort out my problems – and God knows I have few of them –, I was rearranging my thoughts back in their proper place. Sounds bizarre, but eventually, I am quite grateful that this old friend of mine came back. It helped me to discover certain buried things.

The French have a name for a sleepless night, Nuit Blanche, which stands for White Night. I think they’ve got it right, because in that very moment, few things could become clearer…

Because in the darkest night, the most insignificant light becomes your guiding lighthouse.

Until then, sleep tight.


Good guys go to heaven and where do I land? Pattaya... Vol. Deux...

As you probably have guessed... yeah, indeed... Walking Street is a road full of bar and clubs and stripclub with gazillions girls and was-a-man-but-cut-my-thing-then-be-girls. It was quite scary actually... everyone was shouting and calling you, inviting you to enter their club with the menu in hand (boy-girl, girl-girl, boy-boy, boy-armadillo... arrrrgh!), the background filled with loud techno music. It was scary indeed.

We were a dozen of foreign people, who came to Pattaya to attend the biggest advertising festival in Asia, and suddenly we are faced to that kind of debauchery. And what would every good ad people do? Blend into the background of course...

First mission was to find a cool place to hang and have a chat. Quite hard, since every café and bar pumped the volume to the maximum level. Then suddenly, among the crappy techno beats, we heard the familiar intro of "Smoke in the Water"...aaaah, what a relief... So we decided to hang in that bar and Azli, the insane srilankan, order a bottle of Samsong Rum, the local assassin. Yes, the drink was murderous. I think you could clean your face with that liquid. Talk about a multitask drink. After few glasses of coke and rum, we headed to the nearby club and tried to see what the dance scene in Pattaya looked like...


The place was packed, and somehow, the club didn't have a dance floor, so they put tables everywhere. There are barely room to move. The songs was crappy, you know, hyper speed trance. But after few shots of Jack Daniels, your body kinda follow every beat. And yeah, that first night was quite hallucinating. We were still quite drunk in the morning when we started the workshop. As Alex Lopez, the president of Beacon Communication, said... "I pity the guys who would present after lunch... because that'll be when the shit gonna hit the fan..."

He was right of course... the hangover came at noon.

Nevertheless, the workshop was excellent. The said Alex Lopez talked about inspiration; how to get your idea from here and there, detaching yourself from your work, meditate to find an idea. Then Yasmin Ahmad, the famous CD from LBKL, talked about honesty, toward your clients and of course, yourself. That was enlightening. Angela Koch gave us some tools to get a big idea, and more importantly, how to sell it - one thing that we, in creative department, lack in knowledge. After lunch, Linda Locke tried to make us understand on how to breakdown an ad, some sort of being a reverse engineer. It was cool. you see an ad, then you try to guess what was the idea behind, strategically, creativily and business wise. Tay Guan Hin from Singapore gave us some tricks to get an idea for our layouts, it was more in the zone of art direction. Then Alex Lim guided us to play with words. This is a session for copywriters, but I enjoyed it much, as I always have that little penchant of writing. He made us write something about a perfect day, with a chilling background soundtrack. I liked it. It's kinda like writing in "oneword". To finish the day, we had Kazoo, a manga influenced CD from Beacon. He talked about how japanese culture had started to spread globally in the advertising industry. The guy was very cool... he and I had a long talk about anime, since I grew up with that thing in my television set.

We didn't do anything when the night came, we basically just ate and drink beers at the poolside. We knew that we needed our energy for the morrow.

The next day was filled by serious workshops. We had Juan Carlos Ortiz from South America to talk about the ad in his region and how Leo Burnett judge an ad based on spesific criterions. Always have a 7+, that was what he always said. Then Valerie Cheung from Singapore opened our eyes on viral and interactive medias. She was a very intelligent person, not to mention cute as a button. You'll want to click it... har... har... Finally, Paul Kemp-Robertson, editor of CONTAGIOUS magazine, gave us the insights on creative medias and the oh-so-dreadful brief... we had to promote his magazine at the Cannes Festival with low/zero budget... arrrgh.

After a sleepless night and hard work, they announced the winners. And the honour went to Wen and Ben from Ogilvy and Mathers Hong-Kong. They truly deserved that. It felt nice to see that you lose to the best. You guys rock!

As for the after party... well, basically just the same as above. Crappy club and more drinks.

I'll write more later about Pattaya and Adfest... now I have to do some works, otherwise I'll get my ass kicked once again... and me no like that.



Good guys go to heaven, bad guys go to Pattaya... part one.


I've been in Pattaya, Thailand for a week to partcipate in the Asia Pasific Advertising Festival, or most commonly called Adfest. My partner and I were to compete in the Young Creative Competition and also to attend the YC workshops. It was a very interesting experience and it certainly opened my eyes of the present world of advertising. Let's recapitulate my trip.

We departed from Jakarta the 7 march, and we arrived grossomodo at 13.00. To our surprise, our organization in Jakarta didn't arrange the transport from Bangkok to Pattaya. So we had to find our way to reach that place. After few calls and flirting with the tourism office lady, we decided to take the bus from the airport to Pattaya, via Bangkok terminal. It was the cheapest way to get there. It costed us about US$7 each, in comparison of a taxi drive, that would cost us about US$30 each. Good save.

We arrived in Pattaya around 18.00, all tired and sore. We had to dine with the other participants at 19.00, so after a quick shower and shave, we went down to the lobby and finally met them, sitting in the couches. The first guy I talked was a Srilankan, Ryan or Holli as he likes to be called. Then I started to make a round of "Hi my name is blablabla from blablabla." All of them were young and burning to create. I could see the fire inside their eyes. Then we all went to this place called Sharkie to have our welcome dinner.

It was a cool place by the sea. They served excellent thai style seafood and guess what, free flow beer and wine... guess what were Rangga's drink of choice... seafood always goes with white wine, that's the rule. I chatted with some other guys, from Thai, Vietnam and Hong Kong. We basically talked about how was life in our agencies. You know, sort of sharing war stories. After the dinner, I spotted some guys who looked like partygoers, so I nonchalantly introduced myself and shamelessly asked them where were they going. One bloke, bald as an egg, big as an oax called Azli greeted me and said that they were going to have a drink in town... some place called walking street. In my mind, walking street is just somewhere where they have some pubs or such...

Boy, was I wrong...

-to be continued due to some works...-


Touristical View...

My two good friends from Switzerland, Yann and Andréa, are visiting me few days ago... now they are in Bali, enjoying the beach and the sun -j'espère il fait un temps splendid là-bas... et dites bonjour à Simon de ma part-. They plan to go to Flores and maybe Celebes afterward. Lucky bastards...

But that's not what I wanted to write now.

During our nocturnal discussion in a Café in Jalan Jaksa, with loud crowd and few bottles of the famous Bir Bintang, we brought up a subject that tickled my mind, as usual. Because alcohol sure could bring profound stuff and before you know it, you start rambling about useless things in life. The subject was how our view on our hometown could be changed after a long trip abroad. How something banal and taken for granted could be different after you see other places.

I lived in Geneva for 8 years and during all those times, I played the tourist every single day. I liked to take the bus to unknown places, the distant suburban areas and the Old Town. I enjoyed window shopping at the antique stores, flipping pages in used books vendors, buying some fruits from a marketplace... I did see that city as one of the most beautiful city to live in the world... if you don't mind the exorbitant prices, that is... There are so many things to do in it. You could visit the Vieille Ville, go on top the Cathedral to see the breathtaking view of the whole city, buy cheap things in the Flea Market in Plainpalais, having a beer or two at the downtown bistros in Carouge, dance your night away in underground clubs like L'Usine... in short, you could never get bored there... and in the summertime, hundreds of free concerts at the lakeside.

But even genevans forget how beautiful their city is. As I forget how interesting Jakarta is.

7 years I've been here, I never went to Museum Fatahilah, I never walked in the Fish Market, never appreciated the beauty of the Chinatown... I did go to the Monas -the towering national monument in the heart of Jakarta- one sunny afternoon, and it was a grandiose experience. It was like seeing another facet of my hometown.

Now, days after the discussion, I promise myself that I would start to explore my city. Being a visitor in my own house, seeing things that I take for granted under a new perspective.

Playing tourist in own city, that could be the cheapest way to travel, right?

Anyone else interested?
eXTReMe Tracker