Solar Sailer in the Sea of Simulation
Life is something that happens when you can’t get to sleep.
— Fran Lebowitz
Orange ambiance bathed half-a-dozen of Classic Juice empty bottles — a habitual beverage in a solitary mood for cinema — the light streak in between the soft toy of old and new as I set an alarm for Monday morning wake up call. The radio-iPod player warm glow at the the corner of the room commanded an ambiance of warmth. I should sleep easily.
The led light blinking and slowly lost it warm glow to outside light, screened by the blue blinds curtain.
I’m awake for hours from midnight. I ended up shutting the buzzing alarm at dawn. I let tiredness drape me, as the warm sun drape me to sleep till noon.
I thought of her.
The 6 months of offshore paid leaves ended. It’s a been awhile I’m being accustomed to cubicle 9-5 life. Even though it’s a contractual work on building up a database for newly bought Saturation Diving System from France, I rather be in the old office than being alone with other distraction at home.
Creative work on cinematography on hiatus, at least until March, then again, I might end up to Turkmenistan if I got a slot as a Diving Coordinator from the company that called themselves Sigur Ros — but none of the older generation engineers are uninterested with the Icelandic post-rock band. Come to think of it, I never met one of them who are genuinely interested with the band or even post-rock. By them, I meant a group of engineers that stuck on board the flotilla of vessel or clunky oil rig in the middle of the sea or desserted town of post-communist bloc. A little appreciation of the melodic strings, percussion and synth might boost up the morale a little, that, and prayer.
I wanted to talk to her.
That sleepless night I thought of cold mechanical structure, sleeping in helium, bath in brine, work in abyss — translated in numerical database in a spreadsheets system.
Would she give me her number?
I got Numbers in my MacBook Pro, but they’re working in Win OS environment. Good thing I got Boot Camp installed — for MS Office, but more importantly for AutoCAD. Autodesk just released Mac version, but I don’t think I can spend a grand more on software. I’ve to make do with the old office’s version.
There’s countless version of scenario of how I should tackle the matter regarding her number, but which?
I spent the noon till evening crunching data from 7 boxes of manuals and technical books. It’s a mix feeling of elation meeting with the ex-colleagues and re-training my old engineering mind back to its track. 6 months break from engineering into creative work is an enjoyable months. From amateurish shot to professional production. I’m glad I’m given the chance to prove my strength in HDSLR cinematography, no matter how lack the skill I was when I first started out. It’s no wonder the ex-colleague are more interested with time-lapse question, choice of body and lens than answering my question to matter of the database work. It’s my first day. Be easy.
Getting her number won’t.
I was at the The Gardens’ Machines. It’s late. After three visit to different Machines store, finally I found a capable technician who are willing to take my Shure SE310 earphones.
Yuna, the musician just beside me with her errr, manly-friend. My mind said “Hi, I’m a fan!” My tongue uttered otherwise, slipping “uhm” and “ah” until it finally manage to change the subject of tongue slipping to more technical matter and economics: “It barely two years, the left ear bass driver are little off and why does it cost me RM1.2k in 2009 and now it’s RM800?”
Almost like bragging my audiophile attitude in front of her. While she’s more interested with buying an iPhone 4 for her (or her male-friend).
My ballooning audiophile technical jargon found its way to the the able Mac Technician, we talked about active-passive noise cancellation, treble and bass driver, stopping at vacuum amplifier, while waiting for my receipt.
I’m now less of one favourite earphones for traveling. At least for a month until they got it fix. Grado SR60i is too old school for a walk-about, and being open cans, not a good choice for public usage.
I like Sennheiser too.
Funny thing happened that night. I’m having my late fix of java at the Starbucks nearby and as the barista just about to pull the espresso shots — blackout. So there I was, coffee-less and with iPod without earphones, a MacBook Pro without wi-fi, a man without his night bath, a smelly guy sitting in the cozy cafe without air conditioner.
A guy trying to make a sense of this digital distraction and monologue affection.
Like any sane people in the deluge of digital world. I tweet on my handphone.
The timeline gone a little bit wild that night.
Instead of my smiling facial expression digitally bath with the white led, I’m now in a lit cafe. The power is back. Oh, the sweet barista troubled herself to Starbucks at The Borders to bring me to-go java.
I’m smiling a bit more and biting my lips as the timeline getting more visual.
I’m hungry. A hungry fat cat.
Semisonic’s Closing Time accompanying me home but not to bed.
I was wide awake till 8 am.
I started with compliment, gone half-through with half-joking intention. Ended up with embarrassment.
My tired mind failed me.
I was wide awake at noon, in the office. They’re formulating the work flow of repairing a hole at the strengthener of a Floating Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel. A converted tanker that work like an oil rig in deep sea oil field. There’s a hole smaller than iPhone inside the bow area. A work that only need 1 hour on dry land will took us 5 hours deep in the water. Welding in confined space always spells trouble. To make it worse it’s directly under the engine room and the waste collector. Oily and feces in the muddy dark cold water.
Oh, shit. I fucked up! I shouldn’t have asked her number!
There’s teleconference with a senior Inspection Diving Supervisor on the phone that involved with the FPSO’s last year Underwater Inspection in Lieu of Dry Docking (UWILD). He gave a pointer with the work flow, that shouldn’t be a problem getting a nod from Ship Classification Body like ABS or DNV. One of the engineer joke about sticking an iPhone with epoxy. Then the joke goes on from Corrosion Alarm App to Nanobots (my joke). We’re digressing. Back to the drawing board. Literally. The whole white board are blue lines of diagram and sea of red marks.
All it takes is time.
I can wait. Can I?
The underwater compartment will be flooded, the air bubbles from the air hose should gives the Welding Diver a few centimeter of clearance of open space and oxygen for the welding work. It took an hour to let the muddy water to settle down the sediments.
Settle down. The digital distraction may have wrought physical attention. It’s just classic Othello jealousy.
I was at the cafe. They’re a crowd of executives. Talking, sipping, eating, rowdy with laughter.
And all I thinking was is sleep (and finishing off this draft of entry).
Good night. Love.
Daft Punk’s Tron: Legacy drowned me to sleep with Solar Sailer and Sea of Simulation.