SEBELAS PATRIOT – Bacaan Wajib Calon Pemain Timnas PSSI

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Patriotisme dan nasionalisme bisa tumbuh dari mana saja, termasuk dengan membaca. Mungkin celah ini yang dimanfaatkan Andrea Hirata untuk mendongkrak patriotisme anak muda Indonesia.

Jika dalam novel Laskar Pelangi Andrea Hirata (Ikal) berperan sebagai anak yang gemar bulutangkis, maka di novel Sebelas Patriot ini dia berperan sebagai seorang anak yang gemar bermain sepakbola. Kisahnya berawal ketika dia menyibak tabir sejarah ayahnya yang ternyata adalah seorang pemain bola mumpuni di Belitong pada jaman penjajahan Belanda.

Novel ini terdiri dari dua latar: pertama, pada jaman penjajah di mana ayahnya yang saat itu bekerja sebagai pegawai tambang berjuang melawan kolonialisme dengan cara membela klub sepakbola pribumi melawan klub sepakbola kolonial. Yang kedua saat ikal remaja berusaha mewujudkan mimpinya untuk menjadi pemain timnas PSSI demi membahagiakan sang ayah.

Dari segi cerita, novel ini sangat menarik dengan bumbu patriotisme anak muda. Di sini dipaparkan bahwa perjuangan melawan kolonialisme tak semata hanya bisa dilakukan dengan cara berperang mengangkat senjata di medan laga namun juga bisa dilakukan oleh seorang pemain sepak bola kampung. Novel ini juga mengajarkan semangat pantang menyerah untuk meraih impian: digambarkan betapa gigihnya si Ikal berlatih bersama teman-temannya untuk menembus seleksi Timnas PSSI mulai dari tingkat kabupaten hingga tingkat nasional.

Alur yang lambat dengan rangkaian peristiwa nan detail akan membawa pembaca tenggelam dalam cerita, seakan terlibat dalam peristiwa. Hal ini tampak dalam ilustrasi pertandingan sepak bola antara tim primbumi melawan tim kolonial. Pilihan kata-kata melayu khas Andrea Hirata juga menambah indah bahasanya. Tak ketinggalan, Andrea Hirata juga memasukkan cerita-cerita jenaka dalam novelnya.

Satu hal yang membuat novel ini jadi kurang greget adalah penebusan kegagalan meraih mimpi si Ikal untuk menjadi pemain tim nasional PSSI dengan “hanya” mendapatkan kaos tim Real Madrid yang ditanda tangani oleh pemain favoritnya, Luis Figo. Seakan tak sebanding memang, tapi di luar itu novel ringan itu (112 halaman) sangat layak dibaca oleh generasi muda kita tuk menumbuhkan semangat nasionalisme yang mulai tergerus zaman.

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Mobile Phone Addiction

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I often get told by my wife that I spend too much time with my mobile phone.
Actually, I use my mobile phone mostly to connect to the internet. Reading news and searching information in google are the most “wasting” time I do. Furthermore, I also spend a lot of time by connecting to the social media: facebook, twitter and whatsapp (chatting application).
I realize that it is not “healthy” to spend all day long by holding my mobile phone. However, it is not easy to change this habit. All I can do is to steadily reduce my addiction to it and give more attention to the real world.

The Region I live

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I was born in Gunungkidul, the most remote area of Jogjakarta. It lies in south east Jogja. While it is true that it is a dry region, Gunungkidul has so many beautiful tourism spot.
Gunungkidul is known for its beautiful beaches and caves. There are hundreds of beach and cave there. Even though you can not surf in it, it provide you amazing scenery.
The government has built sufficient infrastructures to support the tourism. The roads toward the tourism area are so smooth. More over, like another Jogja area, the people are very polite and kind and the price is also quite cheap.
Finally, if you visited Gunungkidul caves, Jombang and Grubug for example, you would experience in viewing amazing view of underground rivers.

Good Sites for Learning English

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There are so many sites that we can use to learn English via internet. Here, I will name some of them which I consider very good to improve our English.
1. esl-lab.org
For those who will blast their listening, they have to visit this site and try the rehearsals. It is contained sets of listening materials including the recordings, the questions, the script and the vocabulary indexes.
2. abcnews.com
You can either hear and read the news. Its combination will lead you to have good pronunciation.
(To be continued)

Save Indonesian Football!

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Many people think Indonesian football has recovered from an injury. A saviour has come through the form of La Nyala Mataliti (LNM). The National Team has been rebuilt which consist of the best players.
However, I strongly believe that it is entering an extreme danger. The Mafias have already comeback.
Have a look at the men behind LNM: Joko Driyono and Hinca Panjaitan. All of them are the “old player”. It is a reincarnation of Nurdin Halid regime with the same man behind the gun, Nirwan D Bakrie (NDB).
We agree that Djohar Arifin regime is incapable, but by giving LNM the authority is a clear blunder. Apparantly, Djohar Arifin don’t has ammunition anymore since Arifin Panigoro go back down.
Corruption and game fixation are the real threat. PSSI may be the most unaccountable body in this country. Law enforcement in this body is very weak. Moreover the NDB would set the champion of the league. So we already know who will win the leage? Who else.

For information related to mafia in PSSI, please check @footballnesia favorites.

Together We Can

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6.30 am, December 24th 2010, we had succeeded in reaching top of Mountain Semeru, the highest land in Java. It was rather late from our plan to reach the peak before sunrise. It was not easy to step in this spot. We had to struggle more than five hours in scrambling more than 45o sands slope, one kilometer before the peak.

Even, the difficulties had rose since in the planning when we had to arrange the transport, logistics and equipment.  As an expedition starter, I had to ensure this trip would run well. It was difficult enough to divide the portion of work for nine expedition members, which came from five different cities. In order to ease the work, we pointed some members to be responsible for preparing each section.

However, we could tackle the problems, and in December 21st 2010, all team members gathered in Tumpang, the last town that we would pass. We completed all the requirement here and we were ready to start our journey.

The hardest problem emerged in “summit attack” day. Early in the morning, at 01:00 am we started to move headed the top. Three of the member has made a leap in the front, far away from the others. Meanwhile, six of us were left behind because one of the members was suffering from hypothermia. He kept vomiting and trembling. In that time, it was crossed in my mind that we would not succeed to achieve our goal. My determination was that we had to reach the top together.

We had been walking for three hours and there were no signs that the peak of the mountain was close to us. The horrible moment happened when one of us unintentionally touched the head-big stone and dropped it. It was rolling and hit my friend’s leg who step in the lower slope. Luckily, it was not cause serious injury.

The sun had risen and we still struggling in the middle of sea of sand. Fortunately, my friend was getting better and he could walk steadily. We kept giving him support and motivation.

Finally, at 06.30 am we reach the peak. Some of us were crying soon after we step in this highest land in Java. It was a great moment when we saw the surrounding view. The sea of clouds was so amazing. We were the one above the clouds.

If I Could Go Back

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If I could go back to the place and time in the past, I would go back to my senior high school period. I think I did not do anything in that period.  I just realized this after I went to the college and saw the other students had a lot of experience during their senior high school period. They had done many extracurricular activities and contributed more to the society instead of sat only in the class and became a geek.

As an example, my friend in college experienced in interchange student program. He lived in Australia for one year. He got priceless learning with different system, could learn another nation culture and of course he could improve his English significantly. My other friend had climbed most of the high mountains in the island, even he had succeeded in reaching top of Mountain Semeru, the highest mountain in Java and top of Mountain Rinjani, the 3rd highest mountain in Indonesia.

I am very envy to my wife. She had done so many extracurricular activities in her senior high school time. She joined Girl Scout and became the commander. She also became a member of art group, which actively produced and performed poems and dramas.  Furthermore she joined adventure club and marching group.

On the other hand, in my senior high school time, I just only concentrated to achieve good grade in all subjects. I went to school in 06.00 am and went back home in the afternoon. It was such a boring activities because I did it every day, six days a week.

All in all, if I could go back, I would join my senior high school football club, active in adventure club and doing something that have benefit to the society such as involved in student science research.

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