What is the difference between Indonesians who spent 1-5 years abroad, say, USA, and Indonesians who spend their whole life in Indonesia?

Depends.

If it’s some privileged Jaksel Orba kid who stayed within the safe familiar PERMIAS/KBRI bubble for the entire time he/she was there… then no difference whatsoever.

Or, if it’s some nervous Jakbar kid who arrives and gets sucked in by the Indo church youth groups… then biasanya jadi close-minded religious zealot.

Those two types are basically two sides of the same coin. And you know ’em when you see ’em.

Hey Vipey, I confessed to some of my college friends that I am no longer religious. They didn’t really take it easily and I.. don’t know how to react about that. I hate that I have to defend my point of view, but it seems like hoping them to accept me as I am is too much to ask. Suggestion?

One: Don’t defend your point of view. You don’t owe anyone an explanation, and neither do they owe you anything. As I always say: semua orang berhak deluded sesuai keyakinan yang diturunkan orangtua masing2.

Two: If you can accept them for whatever their parents made them believe, but they can’t do the same for you, then don’t worry about it. Strive to have the serenity to accept the things you cannot change; the courage to change the things you can; and the wisdom to know the difference. (Yes, I copied that off the Serenity Prayer).

Vipey, but aren’t you the one who told us to accept the temporary nature of friendship? Doesn’t that mean friendship and friends are just as temporary as the current date bumi hanguskan semesta gf/bf?

Yes, but friendships generally last for much longer. And despite my views on the temporary nature of friendships, I still have friends that go back 30 years and are still in touch in a monthly basis. And just because I don’t fling around the word “forever” (like most younger people), it doesn’t mean I value my friends any less.

So compare those “temporary friendships” that to some person-of-the-month you fall for. You abandon your friends, make no time for them, and can’t shut the fuck up about this new person you happen to be klepek2 for. How long is she/he gonna last? A year? Two years? Or from what I see around here… dalam 3 bulan juga udah ga mikirin.

It’s easy to assume apapun is The One, and Forever… when you just don’t know any better.

So, what do you think about, and how do you deal with, your friend who intervenes your personal business? Like, intervening your relationship with your significant other. – F-R-I-M-A

I would listen to what he/she has to say.

What if my significant other is a controlling maniac? What if she treats me like dirt, and I am too stupid to see it? What if I turned into a miserable person since I’ve been with her, without realizing it?

You might be blind to these things. You might be in denial of it.

We all need friends who won’t hesitate to bitchslap some sense into us.

So, here’s my biggest insecurities : I’m afraid about not having friends. This maybe sounds weird, but I do, really. How if someday they just gone and leave me here, because I have nothing left? How should I deal with this?

What makes you think you won’t be the one who leaves them? You know, when you meet some guy or girl and go bumihangus semesta and never make time for your friends anymore? We all think that we are enlightened and “above” abandoning our friends, but when it actually happens.. ya sama2 aja kok semua. You’re all the same.

You know all those wisuda pictures captioned “FRIENDS FOREVER”? The only reason why they think it’s forever is because none of them are married yet.

Accept the temporary nature of friendships. Enjoy it while it lasts. If it lasts til the day you die, fine. If it doesn’t, be thankful for the good times once shared and move on.

hey om vipey, i’m 18, mahasiswi kampus ekonomi swasta yg surrounded by temen-temen yg udah pada buka bisnis (clothing line, online shop, you name it), and i just start thinking to open a new business with my 2 best friends. any tips for us? since this is our first time and clearly we’re an amateur

Sure, here’s a tip:

Don’t start a business with friends.

“Kenapa tidak?”

Ya kenapa harus? I bet that if you sit down and really think about it, there is NO reason why you need your friends in starting the business. Do they offer specific skill sets that you do not have yourself? Or simply karena ‘ih kayaknya lucuk juga ya kita bikin bisnis bareng’?

“Ya karena modalnya kan harus kumpul2..”

Think again. Can you start with a lower investment that does not require ngajak2? Can you borrow money so that you can be the sole owner?

“Ya aku kan ngga ngerti pembukuan.. temen aku yang ngerti…”

Then pay someone who does. Or learn it on your own. There is always a way that does not require sharing ownership with someone else.

I’m not saying that starting a business with friends is a bad idea. All I’m saying is, the reasons should go beyond ‘ih kayanya lucuk juga ya kita bikin bisnis bareng’.

That’s all.

Om Adrian, ketika om kumpul2 sama keluarga besar ato teman2 yg religious, apakah om akting menjadi religious? I’m not a religious person, so ketika kumpul2 keluarga or teman2 saya harus akting supaya mereka ga ngeribetin saya dan itu ‘melelahkan’. Kalo saya jujur ke mereka, pasti saya agak dijauhi.

Duh, emangnya ngapain sih kalau kumpul sama teman2 dan keluarga sampai harus “acting” urusan religion? Assuming you are not shoving into people’s faces that you are a non-believer, I don’t see why kenapa mesti menjadi masalah. Especially when it comes to friends. You CHOOSE who to be friends with. If they can’t accept you the way you are (assuming you accept them and their imaginary friends), then I’m pretty sure you can find a circle of friends who have no issue with personal choices.

Kalau perihal keluarga besar, ngga kok.. saya tidak pura2. Sepertinya juga sudah well-established among my extended family kalau my family (kecuali my brother, yang masuk Islam) memang tidak religious. Apakah ada yang berani challenge us? Nope. But then again, we live our lives properly dan tidak merugikan siapa2 including ourselves. And maybe the fact that they know there is no way they can win the argument. 🙂

Mas, I read that you did not converse in daily basis using terms such as “gua” and “elu” and used formal bahasa instead. Does that mean you actually joke around with your male friends using “saya-kamu”? Somehow it is so strange to imagine Male to Male jokes with the use of formal bahasa :X

Ngga laah. Ngga segitu kaku-nya in person kok.

Kira2 sih ya, my rules go like this:

Male buddies – lu, gue.

Females (platonic), regardless how long we’ve known eachother: saya, kamu.

Females (romantic, past – current – potential): aku, kamu.

My indian textile importers: I, you. As in “You punya katun printing sudah masuk belum? I lagi ngga main di brokat nih.”

Call me old fashioned, call me uptight, call me anak daerah kagak gaol… but yeah, definitely ngedrop sih when a female uses “elo, gue” with me. It just doesn’t sound right.

The same way I disagree with how Ahok uses “elu, gua” in national magazine interviews. You’re a frickin’ governor, fer chrissakes… not some pecicilan skinny guy in a fedora you see in those advertisements conjured up by those ahensi guys. Gokil, sob!

Pernah kehilangan best buddy? Does the “people come and go” and “life is to short to wait around for someone to change” also prevail in friendship?

Pernah. Bisa karena saya melakukan kesalahan, bisa karena sekedar drift apart. People develop and change overtime, and “fall out” of compatibility. As I’ve said before, I’ve come to accept the temporary nature of all relationships. If a friendship lasts a lifetime, that’s all good. But if it doesn’t, then be grateful for the good times shared and move on.