An Interview with Reza Chandika: Beyond The Crack Jokes and Snapchat Drawings!

I could still recall the good laughs I had from watching his first video that went viral about a year ago. In that video, this funny big guy ate a whole KFC’s chicken thigh in one big gulp and spitted out the bone in just two seconds! The authenticity mixed with his entertaining persona have got me hooked ever since. Next thing I knew, I found my thumb tapping the following button in each of his accounts on varied social media platforms. 

The most unique quirk from Reza Chandika – aside from his crack jokes that always got me thinking “Where in the world did he get that from” – is his ability to draw on Snapchat with only his index finger! Yeap, no stylus is ever involved.

Plenty of friends were fussing about our meeting with this convivial guy, who just celebrated his birthday last Wednesday, at his favorite coffee shop, That’s Life Coffee. They simply couldn’t wait for the interviews to be posted on this blog. So here it is!

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Meet Reza Chandika.

TPOB20: Who is Reza Chandika in your own eyes?

RC: For me, Reza Chandika, is actually just a decent guy who grew up in South Tangerang, which explains my sense of humor that, thankfully, is considered as entertaining by most people. He weighs about 158 kg and never knew what it feels like to be skinny. He doesn’t like to play the pretentious card as he would always leave honest remarks. He’s simply the “what he thinks, he says” kind of guy.

TPOB20: What is it exactly that you do at the moment?

RC: After being a radio producer for three years, I finally have my own radio show called “Duo Jomplang” on 98.7FM Gen Radio, every Saturday and Sunday, from 6 – 11 AM. That’s pretty much what I do on weekend. I also take on MC gigs and host a food experiment Youtube show called, “BDSM”. And, I draw on my snapchat every now and then hahaha…

TPOB20: Speaking of Snapchat, how long does it normally take for you to finish one drawing?

RC: One hour. Yeap, one whole hour just for the drawing. I simply turn on the airplane mode and start drawing. If I don’t do that, the snap could disappear and that would be frustrating. One of my early drawings on Snapchat was for GAC (Gamal, Audrey, Cantika) group. Recently, I just created a more enhanced drawing version of them, and yes, it took me one hour to draw each person. The last drawing for Cantika was gone when I almost finished it, so I had to do it all over again! Sigh.

And how many views do you normally gain for each snap?

RC: Not much. Probably about 6000-ish views per snap.

TPOB20: Wait, is this a humble brag, or what?

RC: No, I’m being serious. It’s completely nothing compared to other people who might already have about 20 thousand views per snap.

Said Reza with a complete serious expression. This is definitely the other side of him that I never got to see on Snapchat. I got even more curious to dig out his dreams, values and struggles. And, finding out what could get this “all-time-cheerful” guy angry or upset .

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TPOB20: Can you tell us about the early days of your career? How did it all started?

RC: Since elementary school, I have always wanted to be a fashion designer. It’s a real challenge for a big guy like me to find nice clothes that actually fit. So I was determined to learn about fashion design and make my own clothes. That explains why I enjoy drawing.

However, the path of life brought me to the broadcasting world instead. I took broadcasting as my bachelor degree and dreamed to be a radio announcer. I did try to join this competition to be a radio announcer, but I didn’t win it. I did try applying as radio announcer, but I was positioned as a producer instead.

At that point, I thought probably this is the path that I have to take. Maybe I couldn’t get what I’ve been wanting in an instant because I had to learn the “behind the scene”. And, that’s how it all started. Things started to unraveled since then. I started to build a network, met a lot of influential people, until one day someone offered me to be a producer for Raisa‘s Youtube video series. Then, they offered me to host the series. And, I ended up being the MC for Raisa’s concert this year. What started small had gradually led me into a bigger platform.

TPOB20: What are the values that you always hold firmly in delivering your work to the client?

RC: To simply be my own self. And, to deliver the best version of me. This might sound very basic, but I do believe that sometimes people want to be the best by copying others, pretending to be others and lose themselves in the process. For example, at the early days of MC-ing for wedding events, as I intended to give the best, I came to a conclusion that to be a great wedding MC I have to be formal and inflexible. Even though, it is totally the opposite of my traits. People who know me failed to see the real me as I was busy trying to be somebody that I’m not. From that point on, I learned to bring out the real Reza Chandika, the funny and flexible person, and give it my best.

TPOB20: Most people know you as a funny guy who is never sad or angry because you are always laughing and making people laugh at the same time. Out of curiosity, what could anger you? Do you even get angry?

RC: I do get angry because of this one thing that I really can’t tolerate. I dislike people who tell lies. Once you lie to me, I would lost all my trust and it would be difficult for me to rebuild my trust towards you.

TPOB20: What kind of activity do you do to refuel your creative tanks?

RC: Me time. By me time, I mean getting a full-body massage, watching a movie, and sitting here. It’s been my comforting place since 2010, by the way.

TPOB20: What was the biggest struggle so far in pursuing your dream? What made you kept going?

RC: I shall say that 2012 was the lowest point in my life. I was 21 back then. Before I encountered this broadcasting world, I was actually a singer. Unfortunately, I never got the chance to do solo. That year, I auditioned for a musical, got accepted, but again reality struck, the event was cancelled. So I joined this competition that I mentioned before but I didn’t get it. I was confused and started to think with so much insecurity about my talents.

In 2012, I thought I could get everything I wanted easily. Apparently, I was wrong. So I started 2013 with lower expectation. I interned as a producer to complete my thesis material. When my internship program was about to end, one of the existing producers in that radio resigned. And I was offered to fill in the position.

A year passed by. After gaining quite a network, I moved to another radio and became the producer for two radio announcers that hosted the number one radio morning show in Jakarta. Being their producers for two years definitely an eye-opening experience for me as I got to learn so many things. I absorbed too many precious knowledge about the broadcasting industry and I got to meet more people. After three years, I didn’t immediately become a radio announcer and have my own show. I still have to wait for seven months since I resigned from my job.

But, through all this, I learned that even when you don’t get what you want, even when things don’t go the way you want it to be, you just couldn’t stop. Time never stops. So you might as well just pull yourself together and continue your walk. Otherwise, you would only be wasting your time.

I also learned that when God wants to give you something, He will not give it to you all at once. He will give it to you through stages, through times, and He will lead you to get to your destination. I love this quote from the movie Evan Almighty:

“If someone prays for patience, you think God gives them patience? Or,  does he give them the opportunity to be patient?”  

Life is a process. When you have reached one point, don’t get satisfied easily, because the next point awaits. Although the timing is a mystery for us, we just have to believe that the future, the next point, is always better than our current point.

For example, I now understand why I had to be a producer first before I am an announcer. All the knowledge I have as a producer has helped me a lot in preparing my material, in finding the right person that I need to contact for my show, etc.

You also have to be diligent in prayer, because that will help you to get through the process faster. I might not be the most diligent person, but I do believe that I could arrive at this stage because my mother has always been consistently praying for me.

If you could see my face after Reza finished answering this question, you would understand how “WOWED” I was by every single thing that he said. This is exactly why we chose to interview him because we believe that beyond his funny snaps he has so much inspiring stories to share!

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RC: Is that inspiring enough? (He asked, again, with a serious expression).

TPOB20: Are you kidding me?? 

He chuckled before he agreed to move on to the next question.

TPOB20: What is your biggest dream that you haven’t achieved until today?

RC: Well, I just got my biggest dream accomplished this month, which is being a radio announcer and having my own show. However, if you asked me what is my ultimate big dream in life, it’s to work hard until I have financial freedom. Because, I want to take my mother for a trip anywhere and anytime she wants it. Since my dad passed away, my mom raised me and my two brothers as a single parent. She worked really hard to make sure that we go to college and supply for our needs. She always puts us first, so every time she got money she never spent it on herself. I still remember the moment I got my first salary, I used it all to buy a bag for her as my gratitude for putting me first all this time.

TPOB20: Who is your inspiration in life?

RC: That is an easy question. Definitely my mom. Can you imagine being a single parent, a woman, who has to raise up and provide for three children and all the household needs, yet at the same time still living her life joyously? I can not. Put me in my mother shoes, I might gave up halfway. Another thing that is so inspiring about her is that she has such a kind and sincere heart. She could treat people carrying bad intentions towards her, or talk bad things behind her back with so much sincerity. She teaches me by setting an example that it is not a difficult thing to live as a kind-hearted person.

TPOB20: Lastly, what is the perks of being 20 to you?

RC: You can do everything you want. Literally. When you are in high school and you wanna skip class, the school will call your parents and ask about your whereabouts. But in college, especially when you hit twenty you suddenly gained this privilege to take care of your own self. However, with so much freedom also comes great responsibility. You gotta know the boundaries. You might want to try some things out, but you can’t be too naive or too ignorant. Because, in every single thing you do there is a consequence. And you can’t escape it. 

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And so my Sunday was well-spent. We got what we were looking for from Reza Chandika, but it would not be complete if we didn’t wrap it up with some photo opps!

ps: leave us a comment below if you have any thought on who to interview next month.

Write to you later,
HG. (@gersonhenry)

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