About DNA Test: What Am I?

I’d been eyeing on the commercial DNA test since I moved to North America, but was hesitant about the accuracy of such test. Not until recently my boss took the test and showed me how “fun” the results were. So I decided to grab the (discounted) kit and sent my sample to the lab. I chose 23andme as one of the commercial service provider here in North America.
So why would I splash CAD160 only to reveal my ethnicity compositions (the kit comes with traits, and health analysis, too). I’ve been asked by so many people my whole life, why I physically look different than common Indonesians, particularly than the rest of my family members. Very light (to fair) skin, brunette, hazel eyes. My most effective, end-of-discussion answer, would be “… because I have European ancestry…”. My parents also use the same answer.
But the truth is, no one… no one ever, can actually verify it. And deep down inside, I am never sure about having such ancestry. It just doesn’t make sense, because I am the only one in the family with such features (few cousins share common features, though, which is so random).
I also got so many questions about why I am always underweight, and my answer is “It’s genetics” only because my two brothers are also underweight. But we are not sure.
I took the test, to find out the truth. Of course I didn’t do it without research. I set my expectation by doing lots of reading on the service. The conclusion? It’s a “recreational science.” It’s not necessarily proven and their level of accuracy relies on their data set. it’s about percentile: how you are compared to the set of data they own. Meaning, the more data set of people who share the same genetics with me, the more “likely” the result corresponds to reality.
I finally received my result just few days ago. It displays so many interesting findings and details, from ancestry percentage, genetic-based health factors, and traits. I won’t elaborate everything (you should try it, it’s amusing!), but here’s two important highlights which (finally!) serve as the answer of some of the most pressing questions about my genetics:
  1. I am definitely Asian. No European. But, the result says that people who share similar genetics with me will have everything the opposite of my physical features. So why do I have all those features? I have no idea. Some irregular variations maybe? (Disappointing explanation, duh?)
  2. I tend to weight less than average. This explains why I am underweight my whole life. Weight has genetics factor guyss!
But it’s a “recreational science” after all. Those results are no way near accuracy nor reality. Why? The provider admits their analysis are based on estimations, and they particularly don’t have enough data set on people of my ethnicity. They even provide results on traits based on assumption from genetics of different ethnicity, which is not necessarily relevant.
Do the results serve as facts? I would say it gives some senses about my ethnicity, traits, and health tendency. It’s scientific, but it’s just for fun. At least for me, now I have better ammunition in dealing with questions about my ethnicity and weight.
But I think the test is worth taking. It’s a fun experience to find something new about yourself and something you are not aware of before. Lots of revelations, although don’t take it seriously.

Jadi Perempuan Itu…

Mumpung masih dalam suasana Hari Perempuan, sebagai perempuan saya mau ngoceh tentang perempuan ah.

Jadi perempuan itu…
Perempuan itu cantik. Cantik itu datang dari dalam diri. Attitude. Personality. Pembawaan harus baik supaya terlihat cantik. Inner beauty bahasa kerennya. Tapi jangan ngandalin pembawaan aja. Penampilan juga penting. Apalagi kalau mau menarik perhatian laki-laki. Laki-laki itu visual, fisik. Jadi harus merawat diri ya. Rambut harus diurus, jangan sampai kusam. Rawat muka, pake makeup kalau perlu, tapi jangan menor ya, kesannya jadi terlalu cari perhatian, yang biasa aja gitu, effortless beauty lah. Perempuan zaman sekarang harus gesit. Jadi berpakaian yang nyaman aja. Tapi perempuan harus anggun, perempuan bagusnya pake rok. Rok panjang gak praktis, eh tapi jangan kependekan juga ya, nanti dikira mau  merayu laki-laki, yang biasa-biasa aja. Pakai sepatu yang nyaman. Perempuan menarik kalau pake high heels, simbol perempuan kuat, tangguh. Tapi jangan ketinggian ya, nanti susah jalan, gak gesit kayak perempuan zaman sekarang.
Single? Punya pekerjaan? Bagus! Raih prestasi setinggi-tingginya ya, kamu kan gak ada beban ngurus suami, apalagi anak. Kesepian? Makanya cepetan cari suami,  sebelum jadi perawan tua. Nanti kalau kamu keburu sukses, laki-laki gak ada yang mau sama kamu. Takut. 
Tinggal di rumah jadi ibu rumah tangga? Bagus! IRT adalah profesi paling mulia bagi seorang perempuan. Jadi IRT itu harus pinter, berpendidikan, supaya bisa menciptakan generasi yang pinter juga. Eh tapi perempuan tuh harus punya kemandirian ekonomi loh, jangan cuman bergantung pada suami. Kok punya ART? Kamu kan gak ngapa-ngapain di rumah, cuman ngurus anak dan bebersih rumah ajah. Kesepian? Mana mungkin. Kan ada anak dan suami yang tiap hari kamu urus di rumah.
Sudah berkeluarga? Bekerja? Bagus! Kamu perempuan dengan aspirasi tinggi. Kamu bisa ngurus anak, ngurus suami, ngurus rumah, ngurus diri, dan punya duit sendiri. Kok banyak banget yang diurus? Ya gapapa lah. Perempuan masa kini harus kuat, tangguh, bisa multitasking. Capek? Ya siapa suruh kerja, ngapain sih punya aspirasi tinggi. Cari duit tuh urusan suami. Kesepian? Plis jangan manja. Kamu punya keluarga, punya banyak kolega, punya uang sendiri.
Single mother? Bekerja? Bagus! Kamu bertanggung jawab atas penghidupan kamu dan anak kamu. Kamu mandiri, tidak diatur suami, bebas berinteraksi. Tapi pasti kesepian ya? Cepetan cari suami, kamu pasti suka laki-laki mapan dan matang kan? Jangan coba-coba merebut suami orang supaya kamu bisa lepas tanggung jawab menghidupi keluarga ya.

Jadi perempuan itu…


Backstreet Boys’ DNA World Tour: A Night To Remember

Ok. I am a HUGE fan of BSB on their very first album but DNA World Tour is my first ever BSB concert. Why?

Back in the days when they took off, Indonesia was no where on their list. They were not as popular as British boybands, but they did have loyal fans myself and few friends as well. And when they once (or twice) came to Jakarta, of course, a teenage girl (without privilege) like me couldn’t afford a penny to go to a international artist concert.

This post is a review to the recent BSB concert I went to in Ottawa as part of the RBC BluesFest on 14 July 2019 (but trust me, it’s a full concert with 33-song setlist). Before I begin, I have to reiterate that I have been a fan since the very beginning, so my opinion will be mostly relatable if you know BSB since their first existence as well.

Call me cheesy, but I literally cried as they showed up on stage, bringing such an epic opening with those uber-large screen and lighting effects, they sing non-hit singles “Everyone” (Black &Blue) and “I Want to be with You” (Backstreet Boys) in medley. Seeing them live was my dream since I was 10 years old. It’s really hard to contain my emotion when it finally came true. It’s one bucket list checked: it completes me. (I’m being such a drama but it’s true).

Backstreet Boys DNA Ottawa
First time watching BSB and got this close from the stage. I’m a lucky b***h.

In a nutshell, the DNA World Tour is all about walking down the memory lane. If you are a fan in recent years, you might be disappointed as they only sang selective songs from the new album DNA, with many being only in parts (not the whole song). Even if you recognize many of their biggest hits, you might find some mute moments as they sang several songs which are never their hit singles which are never played on the radio, but for a loyal fan who owns ALL of their albums, it really brings up the memory of growing up with the BSB.

I will try to wrap up my opinions in points. I will try not to spoil but spoiler alert!!

1. Their biggest market is their loyal fans

As the biggest-selling boyband and being around for 26 years, they are aware they have strong and large loyal fanbase and they really try to entertain (=to cash in from – it just business, girl) these fan category. Most of their fans grew up together with them, who are currently at the edge of productive age. We, the fans, can afford to spend quite an amount of dollars compared to we were 20 years ago. So yes, demographically speaking, their biggest audience are their longtime fans.

2. DNA World Tour is not their fanciest concert, but it is made to be memorable

Don’t compare their stage performances with those years ago when they were literally “boys” who spent overbudget video clips and stage settings. As a music group hanging around in the showbiz industry, they know what they are after: walking down memory lane with the fans.

The crazy 33-song setlist is not merely a list of songs. The setlist tells story about their journey for the last 26 years, playing with our moods with a mixture of upbeat and slow beat songs, singing medley all of their acapella songs, and save the best most energic last 2 songs as the closing.

They don’t miss any, ANY – of their hits. They even and some upbeat non-hit songs such as “Get Another Boyfriend” “Don’t Want You Back” to add the mood!

Intermezzo: they sang two closing songs wearing Redblacks (Ottawa’s Football Team) shirt. They’re really serious when it comes to building connection.

3. I love the way they embrace the way they are

They’re definitely not flirting around to the ladies the way the used to be. I feel like they present themselves as good friends who have always been around for us. All of them have families, have been fathers for sometime, just like many of us who are now parents as well. That’s how they build connection with us, their longtime fans.

Every single member present themselves as an adult. They age the way we age, at least that’s how they try to show us. They look super comfortable singing and dancing on stage, even laugh at their cheesiness, laugh at being old and still dancing. Everyone was just being so cool.

4. They sing really well

I had a low expectation over their performance on stage, I doubted they can still nail high notes and “Larger than Life” dance move. I was wrong! They sang 33 songs non-stop, while still manage to entertain us with the original dance moves in the most amusing way. It might not look as energetic as it was 20 years ago, but I can tell they enjoyed doing it. In fact, the way they enjoyed it that makes the performance is so fun to watch.

5. They attract new, younger generation, fans

Even is the DNA concert is sort of a romanticizing their past success, the DNA album is no way an overnight project. I find some of the audinece are also younger generation, who genuinely enjoy their new songs. It sounds so BSB, with modern, today’s music style that it attracts new fans and reengage longtime fans like myself.

As a final note, I must say they do a really great job in establishing their current brand. As a long time fan, I find they are still the BSB with all the singing style and dance moves, but at the same time acknowledging themselves being grown ups, no longer the young, free-spirited boyband members. They touch our heart with their songs and the connection as “the good friends who grow up with you”, and that’s why the concert is truly a night to remember.

Ottawa, 15 July 2019

*late post