i’ve been feeling totally uninspired for what seems like what centuries? so i’m taking all my cues from nike and pépé and this time i gonna lose my copulas wakakak aka blog about my personal reading experience. (((personal reading experience))) <– what the fuck’s that, sounds so stiff, must be hangover from my day job. maybe i meant, “am i still reading books or is line today too addictive?” so ya, me gonna take up pépé’s challenge even if nike’s already done it to perfeksyon. what they said? great poets steal? excuses excuses excuses.

“Btw bosque ide dung buat blogmu: your reading experience/habit,” so said pépé. hmmm.

i learned how to read on my own one summer in jogobayan, madiun, from one of those ubiquitous abjad/belajar membaca posters that all orba kids are all too familiar with.


zzz that’s for the millennials. hang on let me try that again.


not vintage enough but whatevs. too lazy too advance search too sexy and i know it.

the first reading materials i could lay my hands on were my mum’s tempo, femina and kartini subscriptions. so it was that my #mikaelreadsforlyfe career started with obsessing about tempo’s kriminal pages, femina’s… everything, kartini’s agony tante letters and this curious column i can’t remember the name of (also in kartini). it’s basically porn disguised as heartbreaking love stories. i remember vividly to this day one about a transexual looking for mr. right after her sex reassignment surgery (in bangkok) and another one about a man who caught his 7-month-pregnant wife fucking his best friend. the thing was that this guy first saw them fucking (WOT) when he came home from work a bit early and the window to their bedroom was slightly ajar. he didn’t barge into the room but stayed outside and watched the whole thing like the sick peeping tom that he was. then he kept doing it until his wife gave birth. then he wrote about it and sent it to kartini. (!!!)

(does anyone remember the name of this column)

and then rumah kecil di rimbabesarpadangrumputditepisungaiplummusimdinginyangpanjangditepidanauperakdjokolelonomylaf trio detektif lima sekawan empat serangkai st clare’s malory towers stop (that scene when they skinny dipped in a lake – HAWT) etcetcetc #mikaelreadscozheboredofvillagelyfestartofborzuaphase

me and me mum used to go to toko boxy in pasar kawak madiun (she driving her biru donker suzuki jimny with yellow decal on its roof) once every month to pick up the latest installment in the rumah kecil series, which was being released for the first time in indo by bpk gunung mulia, ave, gratia plena, dominus tecum, benedicta tu in tokobukuribus. o the tears of anguish when it wasn’t there (“telat ketoke cik”) in its special tall glass case, a new 0.5 boxy pen in its place! hhhrrrggggh.

those books were all in language.

the first english book i read was an illustrated version of stephen king’s pet sematary that my mum bought for me when i started my les inggris at elti kotabaru in jogja. i guess i was in year 5 then? i didn’t understand everything (most things) but i read thru it anyway becoz gengsi.

fast forward to when i was 16 and had just moved to CBR, straya. i had only just finished the full unabridged, no-illustration, version of pet sematary then but still scoffed at being put in an esl class and marched my way into the regular english class when they were reading fucking macbeth.

doube, double, toil and trouble! fuck that shit i ain’t reading these “mirthless jokes and wild ravings!” so i just watched the video that i rented from video ezy. polanski’s version. lady macbeth was fucking hot.

and so began my let’s just watch the video i can’t be bothered reading these doorstoppers career. chronicle of a death foretold, mr. darcy #1, mr. darcy #2, mr. darcy #3, lovely bones (great peter jackson adaptation!), brokeback mountain (you’ve all seen that and yes, i know it’s a cerpen), etcetcetc.

ffwd to 2018. i still can’t get into latin american lit, not for all the writers in residency in mexico city, not for all marjin kiri’s excellent translations, i hardly ever read indo fiction, though manifesto flora makes me so happy, and most of the times i can’t distinguish between aan mansyur quotes and pseudo-profound quotes.

so yeah, sue me. i’m watching the cricket.



2 thoughts on “#mekireads1990

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