Archive for October, 2008

My Favorite Diagram

Friday, October 31st, 2008

Hi… I am reading some articles on Coopetition. A very small yet significant step to conquer my reluctance and sluggishness  in getting touch with my thesis.  All the articles I read keep mentioning, quoting, comparing and discussing their research frame works with these articles: Bengstsson and Kock (2000), Aftuah (2000), Gnyawali, et al. (2001) and even the earlier as Lado, et al. (1997) and Dowling (1996).

            The first is my favorite, the diagram is the center of  magnetism.  I once called it the structure of coopetition, or the coopetition structure.  What then I found is it missed the dynamic of a relationship.  Galvano and Garrafo (2008) in their working paper add the element of time and movement direction to the two-end-continuum. Hmm, can I  include the term in my study?  I wonder! I’m searching of (a) theoretical perspective(s) still! 


 Coopetition Structure


Have you got your number?

Tuesday, October 28th, 2008

Being in a new milieu means learning a lot!  Some things particularly done in a very weird way compare to one at home… Strange way doesn’t always means  illogical, instead it brings new view-angle to appreciate how other people value things including one that we think is a common sense…

            Some time before leaving Jakarta for Catania, I have already anticipated the new-ness(es).  Being in Catania is a life-time worth experience, so I should absolutely find ways to survive.   Survive in a very narrow meaning, finding room and food and things alike.

            Finding a room considered done when I finally got in touch with a friend (*) through the web of  She even picked me up from the bed & breakfast at Vialle della Libertà the next morning of my arrival to go to the apartment at Via Caff, the place where she arranged to be my home during my stay in Catania.   

            They then were (and I really know will be) followed a bunch of kind, friendly and helpful people. Some of them are with me in the Campus, the all beautiful and smart doctoral students in Stanza 19 Dottorandi.  Many more remain nameless: nice and patient people at the supermarket, caffetteria, gelateria (Oh… the unforgettable gelato), pizzeria, the panificio (the bakery), the kebab shop, the bank, the bar/chiosco (coffee and soft drink kiosk), the market, the tabacchi (the tobacco store who practically sells everything) who every time I stumbled when describing or just pointed the thing  I needed, responded with kindness.  I was practicing my motto: “I’m here and I won’t ever let myself hungry!” Just pointed things I want to eat…

            Later, My very-loving Landlady taught me some simple phrases which can be used in the cafe, caffetteria or gelateria… Vorrei questo, per favore. (I would like that, Please).  It is suitable for the shop with the things displayed in the glass shelves.  But to the bank, to change money, was change considered the right term? or fracture into smaller amount?  Uhhh!

            At the end of a discussion with the  Professor, I  just snapped the question.  “How am I able to change the money…. I mean….. my home university gave my living allowance in 500 Euros. The money seems too big to be used in the supermarket…….” (It’s so me… using word ineffectively…).  The kind Professor  immediately called his friends in a bank across the campus.  He wrote a memo describing my urgency and names of his friends at the bank.  After reassuring himself that I knew the bank location, he started to explain the procedure entering the bank: “You have to put all your metal thing and cellphone that are with you in one of the lockers near the entrance.  Lock them, the key for every locker is available and can be brought inside the bank.  Next, you come in the glass cabin, press the green button to let the door open, when you are in the closed cabin you must put your finger (your thumb) in a slot”. The fingerprint became the “Alakazam!”  mantra to open the door. “When you already inside the bank, please ask for the name(s) on the memo”.  I got my money fractured in no time at all.

            An almost similar entering procedure happened when I went to the post office, only fingerprint was not necessary this time.  Yet, as soon as we were inside the post office, we had to fetch a number from the machine… Different code for different services we needed. There were A, C and P.  After getting the number, the waiting begun.   Where did I know the procedure? Of course, from a kind man who demonstrated it as soon as he knew I was confused.  Barely with words, just by pointing out and fetching  the number for me… There were eight counters and it seemed they could serves every kind of services, there was also a LED board displaying the number in turn, one of the attendant even shouted the number: “C  cento ventisette…” (C 127).  “O boy, I’m the C165!” An almost-an-hour waiting! 

            Number is also become crucial at the meat division of  the supermarket.  My room- tenant-fellow  and I decided to walk around the neighborhood one evening.  After a cone of lemon-chocolate gelato and a pizzatte con funghi (mini pizza with mushroom) for each of us, we ended up in one of the major supermarket.  The meat department provides also the cooked meat and chicken.  One man also the customer who overestimated us as Erasmus scholars suggested us to try some cooked meal served.  Hmmm everything looks delicious. My friend decided to buy the chicken. Since, She has ever lived in Catania before, she knew what to do next,  she went to fetch the number.  The attendant will only serve you as your number appears on the LED board.

            It also happened in the Kebab kiosk the next afternoon.   Right after the door of the little shop was the preparation desk of kebab completed with three big meat being grilled. Yummy!  So, I thought I just asked for a kebab.  But then a woman said… “biglietto….cashier…!”  Oh, I had to get the ticket (the number) at the cashier and pay for my meal.   After that, I had to wait… At the little shop, the number systems also run… OK my number is 58… Cinquata-otto.  I placed the ticket bearing the number and the order.  After three kebabs, the attendant came to me.  She asked something I considered… “would you like to put all the vegetables inside the kebab?”  I already planned my answers… “Senza Cipola” (without Onion)”.  She prepared the kebab, and I heard something sounded like “portare via?” (take away?).  I nodded… Si… My kebab then wrapped nicely!

            The number brings fairness… First come, first served…  Fairness is not always fun… Yet, I learned my lesson…  Have you got your number? Hope, your number suits you well!


(*) All names have been omitted due to privacy causes


Sunday, October 26, 2008

An hour had been added to my life!

Thanks to the day light saving time :-)

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