Monday, August 24, 2009

More of the Same

Whenever I think of my current post-graduation state, I am reminded of D.H. Lawrence's short story, "The Rocking Horse Winner." Every waking day I spend cooped up inside the house--because I have no money for going out--serves to remind me that school's over. Ergo, I have no reason to ask my parents for money. Worse, I even hear the walls of our home whisper to me, "You are unemployed! You have no money! you have no money!" Damn walls.

Anyhoo, yeah, that's pretty much it; I have no money. I cannot ask for money without my mother nagging me about the value of hard-earned money. Mothers.

So, anyway, I guess all I'm leading to is that I'm going to try and be a studio contestant on Wheel of Fortune. I want some money, dammit!

Written April 9, 2008
Hah. The word money occurred eight times in this entry.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Portent

Okay, more of what I do best---whining.

Okay, so I've been putting off writing a "serious" post the past couple of weeks. Why? Well, it just so happens that I was the last person to find out that the whole community has actually been reading my blog. Like, oh crap. I've blown my cover big time.

But hey. Whatever. What did I expect, right?

Actually, aside from the fear that has constantly been nagging me, the reason I have also been kept away from blogging is... well, actually the "fear" is the only thing. I swear, I've contemplated deleting my blog a couple of times. And with the news that certain people are privy to my rude ramblings, the prospect of moving out to a new URL has become very tempting. Very tempting, indeed.

Oh well, I'll have to put off moving out until I think up a clever-enough URL. Or until my mother finds this.

Anyhoo, what's been keeping me busy lately? Nothing much, actually. Since graduating barely 1 month ago, I've done nothing. Nada. Zilch. And here I was imagining that, after graduation, I would totally freak out and leave home and go trekking somewhere.

A teensy weensy part of me even misses school. It's true, when you're a student you have a lot of justification for having a daily allowance. Now, I basically have to grovel and beg to mooch some money off ma or pa.

Man, being poor and unemployed sucks.

So anyway, I've tired of always having to show my parents my sad puppy face whenever I go out. So I'm thinking of getting a job. When I go online, part of my itinerary, aside from checking mail--and downloading off Limewire--is scouring and for job postings.

Anyway, I hate to say this, but I am so totally hating home right now. Mother dearest is again being characteristically mother-like and nagging me about the virtues of saving and valuing money. I think it's more of her subtle way of telling me to go get a job. I will ma, jeez. It's just that it's taking me forever to write a resume. Tsk.

Written April 9, 2008

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Farewell Post: A Draft

Like I said, I'll come up with a decent farewell once I've flushed out all the drafts I have lying around, half-finished or left unpublished for their explicit or potentially scandalous content.

I credit the beginning of my blogging career to Avy back in late 2006. She asked me through text to vote for her blog in one of the online polls hosted by another blog. Back then, I had a very cloudy idea of what a blog was. But then I was so averse to anything that resembled Friendster or social networking that I never caught the wave early on. I only decided to start my own after realizing that it could be good exercise for my then-atrophying writing muscles. I never intended to have a lot of contacts in my blogroll, nor did I ever intend to make my identity known.

I had wanted my blog to be a collection of entries I'd address to one person: a friend who, prior to my undertaking this project, had also collaborated with me on a writing assignment. By writing assignment, I mean we shared a notebook where we wrote just about anything that was on our minds. The notebook would go back and forth between us until we filled the last pages. By extension, I began my blog to address security concerns regarding our project, since a notebook was very hard to hide. Also, the days and weeks spent waiting for the notebook and the other's reply proved too impractical. To address that, I then began my blog.

At first---wait, I can sense the impending boredom this paragraph is going to induce upon us all. I'll discontinue the reminiscences then.

Let me just say that I'm undergoing some kind of funk right now. Perhaps this is a foreboding onslaught of my own seven-year blogging itch.

How shall I describe it? I'm in that phase where I'm trying to make myself scarce. The barrage of Twitters, Plurks, Facebooks, etc., has left me somewhat disgusted by it all.

And I did say that this year is going to be the year when I'll finally get over myself. That by and large would explain why I no longer wish to continue this blog. I just realized that I cannot get over blogging about my life. Somewhere in the middle--or toward the end, to be more exact--I had asked myself if my life was really that important that the whole Web had to know what I was doing.

The excuses just keep pouring in. One reason why I was so eager to blog a long time ago was that I always found something in my day that was worth writing about. Now that life has become a routine--wake up, work, go home, sleep--it's so hard to dig through the drudgery and find something valuable enough to share. And that's how egocentric blogs implode.

That was the long version of my farewell speech. This is the condensed one.

This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang
But a whimper

T. S. Eliot, "The Hollow Men"

The Seven Deadly Sins Meme

As said before, I was never too keen on answering memes (and yes, up until now I still don't know how exactly it should be said).

Ah, goody, a reason to sign in and blog.
Tagged by Ami.

Okay, I'll try to answer this as honestly as possible. So if I step on someone else's feelings, then I'm not sorry for being honest.
Here goes...*rubs palms together*


who did you last get angry with?

Oh, sheesh, I really can't remember the last time I got angry. I think it was with my father, 'cause he woke me up too early last Sunday, and I wasn't feeling well and really needed sleep. I told him that, but he's always so inflexible and he always has to get his way. Plus he never takes me seriously when I pretend to be deathly ill--so
ill that I cannot be roused from bed.

who did you last get pissed off with?

Our househelp. I don't mean to sound oppressive or snooty, but I'm just not a big fan of Ate Ofelia, no matter how sold Mom and Pop seem to be at her. Oh God, I sound so mean and coño, but really, there's just something about her that just gets to me. I feel she's intentionally trying to be inept and inefficient just to get me to pop a blood
vessel. Anyway, for her latest attempt, she woke me from slumber just to tell me
that father called to tell us to unplug the rechargeable lamp that he was charging. She knew where it was, but apparently she'd feel much more secure if I performed the actual unplugging from the socket. Hmmm.

who was the last person who got really angry at you?

This one should be easy. My father was the last person to get really angry with me (yeah, "with me" should be just right, cause I was pretty angry myself). That happened on Sunday, 'cause he wanted us to attend mass early, but I didn't want to 'cause I slept late and I have this thing where I believe I'll have a really bad day if I don't get my seven to eight hours of required sleeping time. Anyhoo, I was pretty pissed off at being woken up early, so, to get the message across, I took my sweet little time eating breakfast and doing my morning rituals. I took a bath but I
unfortunately encountered some digestive problems so I took a little more time
in the bathroom.

Long story short: they went to church without me. Hehe.

do you keep grudges, or can you let them go easily?

I don't really know. I'll convince myself that I don't hate this person anymore, but
occasionally, I'd be reminded of that person's "crime." But I always try to give
the person the benefit of the doubt--y'know, take the higher road. But sometimes
it just doesn't work.

2. sloth:

what is one thing you're supposed to do daily that you haven't done in a long time?

Do exercises for my back. That's what the doctor tells me everytime I visit, which is every four years. But somehow I just caaan't. Don't worry doc, I'm saving up for my

what's the latest you've ever woken up?

5:00 PM. This was when I was still doing the thesis. Didn't sleep for 24 hours.

who have you been meaning to contact, but haven't?
My prospective employer?

how many times did you hit the snooze button on your alarm clock today?

School's out. I don't set alarms anymore. I don't even take note of the days anymore.

3. gluttony:

meat eater?

Yeah, but I try to eat more fish. Ever the frustrated vegetarian. Always making excuses for myself.

what is the greatest amount of alcohol you've had in one sitting, outing or event?

A bottle of San Mig Light. Not really much of a drinker, though.

have you ever used a professional diet company?


4. lust:

how many people have seen you completely naked?

The entire family, plus the doctors, nurses in attendance at my birth.

ever caught yourself staring at the chest/crotch of a member of your gender of choice during a normal conversation?

Yeah, but not intentionally. Some guys unconsciously rest their hands down there, and my gaze unintentionally follows.

what's your fave part of the body?

Fave part. I'm fixated on mouths, hands and eyes. And the hollow in the collar bone, 'cause I find it sensuous.

have you ever made a proposition with a prostitute?

Not yet.

5. greed:

if you had $1 million, what would you do with it?

See, here's the thing. I just can't answer seemingly impossible hypothetical questions. I don't know if it's on principle or just because.

I'm the eternal pessimist. I know I'll never have a million dollars, so I don't even want to imagine what I'll do with it, 'cause I don't want to disappoint myself.

would you rather be rich, or famous?

I'd rather be famous.

6. pride:

what is the one thing that you've done that you're most proud of?

Finished that sumbitchin' thesis.

one thing you have done that your parents are most proud of?

Oh dear, I really don't know what goes on in their heads. They don't really tell me if they're proud of me for something.

what would you like to accomplish in your life?

A lot.

what did you do today that you're proud of?

I answered this meme? That's the only heavy activity I did this day.

if you could be anyone else in the world, who would you be?

I'd want to be the woman Christian Bale is absolutely crazy about. Well, I'd also want to be Christian Bale, but I don't think people would approve if I marry myself.

have you ever wished you had a different physical feature?

Yeah. But I guess I'm stuck with poor little old me, so that'll be that.

That's it?!?!?!?

Okay, this is a lame meme (no offense to
the one who tagged me, of course, hehe peace), and so I'm tagging no one.

Written March 28, 2008

Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Man named 3.1416...

He told me, the first and last time I met Him, that I was cute. And, more
often than not, He called me "cutie cute cute" rather than by my name.

The first and last night I spent with him, He told me that I had a lot of thoughts, unnecessary ones, in my head. And that I just had to let go of these thoughts. "...because...a lot of these don't matter," He said, His eyes closed, as He stroked my limbs with His rough, oiled palms, and led it in graceful circles in the air.

He was right, I know. But I couldn't let go of "these things." Dammit.

Earlier that night, we were having dinner, along with a handful of strangers. But I led myself to believe that He was paying more attention to me. He was interested in me. He proferred plates of food in my direction because he noticed that I was too shy to reach for anything uncomfortably outside my grasp. And I took everything He handed to me.

After dinner, when the six of us, strangers all to each other, retired to our cottage in this strange place somewhere in Southern Mindanao, he revealed His true identity.

He was a healer.

And He thus proceeded to heal us all, one by one.

First, our guide. His touch turned this grave-looking, smart-talking, 30-ish man into a child suspended between consciousness and unconsciousness. Pretty soon, he was like a puppet controlled by the invisible strings of His brilliant and mystical mind.

Meanwhile, we--I, and two other students--all of us uninitiated to
this spectacle before us, stood, awed and, at the same time, scared. What witchery is this we had stumbled upon?

But much later, my two companions had fallen prey to His enchantment. And He was whispering in soothing tones--with that unforgettable lisp--words that seemed to come from a gentle prophet. "You are filled with so much anger," He told him whilst holding him in the throes of healing trance. "You must forgive this person."

All of a sudden I was afraid. He could go inside your mind. What if He went inside mine and saw the dark and evil thoughts it held?

I went last. My eyes widened as He stared at me and signalled me to come hither.

My mind was uncontrollably bothered. I didn't want him to see me without my mask. I didn't want Him finding out that underneath this childlike and innocent facade
hid a hideous monster. I blocked His words from my unconscious. I refused His
gentle invitation for me to drop my reservations and step into the zone of vulnerability and, eventually, of wondrous healing.

I think it worked. It took Him close to two hours, and I was able to hold up as long. Until He finally sighed and laid down the judgment that I simply had too little
energy. So He lent me some of His.

He didn't chide me for laying waste to his efforts. Instead, He ended the night with parting words that continue to echo in my ears each time I think about Him.

"You're movements are so graceful and childlike. I love it."

He waited for me to say whatever it was that was preventing Him from reaching me. But I couldn't possibly tell Him. Tell Him that I had entertained unspeakable thoughts as His hands made contact with my skin. That it was precisely His touch--His very existence--that was causing this internal disquiet.

It's been more than a year since I saw Him. Now all I want is to see Him again' 'cause this time I think I'm ready to be healed. If I do get to see Him again, I hope I will be brave enough to bare all.

Written November 9, 2007

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Post Titled "Commercials"

Written one afternoon when I was probably so bored and uninspired that I just decided to type from memory all the commercial jingles I've heard as a child. I'm such a geek sometimes.

Dunlop Socks

Dunlop Socks,
Computer designed
great style and
we all love our dunlop
designed for the future
its the socks
of the future

(ENTER voice-over)

Dunlop socks! Maximum style
maximum comfort
you can count on it--DUNLOP!

Mark Premium
Menthol Cigarettes

It's a great great feeling
great outdoor feeling
the taste of adventure
the fresh new world of flavor
enjoy the
outdoor freshness
with mark premium menthol
smooth exciting flavor
new world of freshness...
Mark Premium
A new world of Freshness (in a breathy voice)

More Cigarettes

of magic
in your tips [tits?taste?]
catch the taste of magic
the magic taste of more
more international cigarettes
catch the
taste of magic...

magic Caress...Caress
color every magic moment


This commercial, I think it was for Green Cross cologne,
where two young kids find a bunny and...I dunno, maybe it was for Close Up? The
weird thing was, a saxophone was playing in the background.. i think it was
something similar to Kenny G's "Dying Young"...shudder! Creepy commercial!

Dear Diary
Carlo sat beside me today
he was sooo cute
i'm pretty
kaya lang i'm fat
i eat too much daw kasi eh
mula ngayon
goodbye chocolates
goodbye spaghetti
goodbye hotdog...

(To the tune
of "Living on a Prayer")

O-woh! way to go Zest-O
Cool and refreshing
that's the way to go
O-woh! Way to go Zest-O

Written December 2, 2006

Monday, August 10, 2009

Last night, I had a dream.

We were seated on a bench, his back to me. He looked troubled. Either that,
or he was just being his usual distant self.

Then he lay down on my lap. And I held him. Just cradled his head in my

There were no butterflies in the stomach. No reddening of the cheeks.

All I wanted to do was make him feel that I cared. I could be a good

But he didn't cry.

His head felt smaller.

I woke up, feeling somewhat disappointed that nothing happened.

Written November 3, 2007

For the life of me, I cannot remember who I was writing about.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Taking Out the Trash


Saw that I had a hefty number of drafts still lying around. Before closing my blog down for good, I figured I might as well publish these. The plan is one for each of the coming days; by the time I get all of these out, I'd have been able to write an appropriate farewell. I apologize in advance if most of them are half-written; there's a reason they were on the back burner all this time. Reading through some of them, I cringe at the fact that most of what I've written does not conform to the punctuation guidelines set by the Chicago Manual of Style and the spelling standards of Merriam-Webster. Still, I think it's best I publish them as is, as editing them will be too much (unpaid) work. Heh.

I have just returned from a one and a half day stay at Sarangani Province--not to mention a butt-killing 3 hour bus trip from GenSan to Davao. No, I wasn't there for a respite; rather, I was there to work--specifically, to interview a couple of Sarangan personalities for an article.

It all started with a text message(from a previously unidentified source) last Sunday, asking if I was available from Monday to Wednesday. Intrigued, I asked, "What for?" And so I was informed by a guy named Kit that they had a sideline: they were asked to write for a travel/promotional magazine, and were wondering if I would be willing to come along to Sarangani with them. My first impulse was to say "no," since I have yet to come up with my interview and article for Sir Don's class. But(unfortunately), I thought it over, and figured, "Ah what the heck, I need the experience anyway." I had grand visions of diving expeditions, whitewater tubing, caving, being taken on a tour of the province and being fed with native food. So on Monday afternoon I went to the Tambara office for the briefing with Ms. Maya, the convenor of the, ahem, writers, and my former teacher in English
11 and 13.

At the meeting I was acquainted with my two fellow division mates, Kuya Kit and Ate Krizza; a fresh graduate(who is now working with an NGO), Ate Ayi, and a guy whose long hair was held up with a chopstick, Kuya Pi(as in the Greek symbol π). I also learned that, aside from being a last-minute-choice writer, I had to fill-in for another writer who had fallen sick and begged off from his assignment. Meaning, I had to write two articles. The worst fate of all was learning that the two articles I was assigned to cover were business articles. Aww man! I hate writing business features! It's not like I know anything about it--I mean, come on, have a heart, I'm only a student! But anyway, I just nodded and convinced myself that this is a necessary obstacle I must overcome, blah blah blah. In other words, napasubo na ako.

The few hours before the early morning bus trip to Sarangani I spent lying wide-awake in my bed. I have never gone to Sarangani before, but that was not what was keeping me awake. Rather, it was the prospect of having to interview strangers(that and the fact that I have to write a business story). How I dread interviewing. I really couldn't sleep, so I just tried coming up with good questions. I was able to sleep for, I guess, around 30 minutes, before my alarm clock sounded off.

I came to the bus terminal and boarded the bus at 4:35 a.m.--a chilly dawn coupled with blasting air conditioning--with me sans jacket. The whole 2-3 hours inside the bus I spent hiding my cold, lifeless hands inside my armpits,in between the seat and my gluteus maximus, trying desperately to keep warm. Meanwhile, my four other companions were blissfully nodding off in their seats. I kept staring at Kuya Pi as he would occasionally wake up, and then start making these weird twirling movements with his hands. "Must be a yoga practitioner," I thought.

Around 7:30 a.m., we stopped in front of the Caltex station in Lagao, GenSan, where Ms. Maya told us Dodoy would be waiting for us with the service vehicle. I was only too happy to get off the bus with its arctic conditions. As I stepped off and headed towards the other side of the road, I could barely put one foot in front of the other--they were that stiff.

As we neared Star Mart, I caught site of a smallish man, sporting shades, and wearing what appeared to be a colorful barong of sorts (like the one the Dencio's Kamayan mascot wears, sans the buri hat). He introduced himself as Dodoy, and proceeded to shake every one of our hands. The minute he did that, my eyes were instantly fixed at his totally hairy-to-the-point-of-being-wiry arms. I have to say, I have a natural distrust of hairy men. I decided to regard him with sly hostility after that.

We were herded off to Jolibee for breakfast and briefing for the day's itinerary. There, we also met with the rest of our Sarangan guides. There was Coco, a tall,twentysomething lady who was to accompany Kuya Pi; two middle-aged women, who were going with ate Ayyi and me to our respective destinations. While eating our breakfast, Sir Dodoy took out a laptop and presented a slide show showcasing everything about Sarangani, from tiger prawns, to Mt. Matutum, Sarangani Bay, various indigenous tribes, and the youthful Governor Miguel Dominguez.

After breakfast, the two women, Tita Taqs and the other Tita went with us, along with Pi and Coco towards a L300 van which would take us from GenSan to Malungon, which I figured wasn't that far since I faintly remember seeing it while we were still on the bus towards GenSan.

Lack of sleep finally caught up with me after we dropped Kuya Pi and Coco at the Capitol. On the road towards Malungon, I couldn't help but doze off with the warm breeze wafting in my face. I must have slept for thirty minutes, before I woke up and saw the van turn towards a small dirt road marked by a signpost that was painted with a big "H". "There's a Hospital here?" I thought, still groggy with sleep. The dirt road led us to a 4-tiered, pagoda-like tower, which appeared to be in the middle of construction. I had come to the Diamond Head Mountain Resort, whose owner, a certain Mr. Ben Figueroa, I was supposed to interview.

The resort was a bit small for someone who has grown used to spending summers at Eden Nature Park, and the facilities were a bit wanting,too; aside from the concrete pagoda which currently serves as a seminar hall, there were only a couple of huts
around the hills. But the view of winding, landscaped hills was beautiful, and the air was cool and fresh, too--it made me want to breathe full and deep...haaah.

A couple of minutes after, I finally met Mr. Ben. He walked around the resort with bare feet. He asked to be excused since he hadn't taken a bath yet.

Around 40 minutes later, after Ms. Taqs was half-way through her life story, Mr. Ben arrives. I was nervous as hell as this was my first time to interview someone. It didn't help that he threw a tiny tantrum at my first question 'cause he said he couldn't understand where I was getting at.

Originally written on December 20, 2006

. . . And it ends there, as I eventually realized the post was too long to finish in one sitting. I did finish the article for the magazine though. I never saw the actual magazine (I doubt the project ever pushed through), but my article did get printed---more than two years later---in a local magazine, with the help of my editor, Ms. Maya. Ah, memories.