I Just Couldn’t…Not Really…

Because I lived those days. I was in the middle of it. I knew what was happening and we were ecstatic about something we do not fully understand. All we know was the tyrant in Malacanang is finally being deposed, and that a new era of hope was being ushered in by the people. My feeble comprehension only reaches as far as getting to class without fear of sniffing tear gas around Mendiola, or being mistaken for a radical protester along Recto. At the time, a yellow ribbon meant something.  And that Cory, along with Doy maybe the start of something  that will unite the country, bridge the gap between rich and poor, stop the senseless war in Mindanao, and pave the way for a true archipelagic state, closer to the utopian society my professor was adamantly discussing in our Humanities class.

It was somehow kickstarted with Ramos and Enrile, the tough military hands of Marcos turning against him and Ver, but we were yet to know then because television and radio can only guess what was unfolding. With what was only shown on tv, we saw pictures of the manly Honasan, or at least images of him leading the elite group of the new breed of heroes. I had to visit my uncle, then a Major in the Philippine Army and was aghast at the yellow pin I had on my fatigue vest ( he gave that vest to me) and was told, in a very forceful manner that under no circumstances am I going to leave the camp with the yellow pin on it. He was fuming mad, but apparently not at me since he was sporting a white arm band.

And when I got back to Lincallo Street a small alley connected to Legarda in San Miguel, Mendiola is already devoid of students, most have taken to closing their doors and windows, in our rented rooms, and boarding houses, and it was a kind of euphoric expectation that somewhere, somehow, the palace is going to fall.

And we were so sure everything is gonna be alright, just like Bob Marley says.

Or so we thought.

My Flag2

30 years is along time to stay  deluded to the concept of liberation from oppression. Epifanio Delos Santos Avenue witnessed an event that could have been bloody and turned out to be the something worthy of getting down in history. The standing ovations they gave Cory when she addressed the US Congress, the irrational name-changing of Manila International Airport into NAIA, the ugly statue in Makati. What are all these things for?

I could have sworn there was a hint of hope somewhere back then.

30 odd years, never have I celebrated EDSA. Because all I see are ghosts.

Just a vestige of something that might have been. We owe it to ourselves to choose better leaders, yet every election we get the same names, the same families, the same treatment.

And we watch the same lame ceremonies on tv nowadays. Only now we get livestreaming on the web.

Mindanao has drifted farther, Visayas is still slumped and Luzon, well Luzon is doing well if the mushroom like appearance of Condominium Buildings are to be the gauge of its pomposity only equal to the Houses it accommodates.

I mean , really , people, what is there to celebrate?

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There’s Something Wrong With Me

Cover Image

Something I have been noticing as I get older.

I’m not normal.

Let me put it this way. My existence is something of an enigma even to me. To prove the point – I have never liked basketball. Which is, by far, what most manly, semi-athletic males aspire to be at a young age. Didn’t go for the basketball shoes that players endorse, was not excited to wear a favorite team’s jersey, nor follow the games religiously, like a penitent during lent.

I never read any Shakespeare. Not for the lack of trying. But growing up in Paete, Laguna, my literary choices border on the lewd and pornographic to the absolute crazy stories like Flowers for Algernon, or the novels by Clive Barker and Stephen King to name a couple of writers I am really familiar with. I even read The Lord of the Rings on the dusty, darker side of the school library while my friends are busy harassing the girls elsewhere.

A deviant.

Tv program choices, even that makes me think I am  somewhat off kilter. I was watching Sesame Street and The Electric Company in my elementary years. Three’s Company, Mork & Mindy, Saturday Night Playhouse, The Wacky racers, just some of my boob tube favorites. Not the soaps and That’s Entertainment. Even the movies I like are not quite mainstream. Because I seldom trust movie reviews and prefer to make my own view of the movie rather than bash a movie I haven’t seen. Come to think of it, why bash a movie when you can just recommend what you like about a film you just watched?

Never liked AlDub. Outgrown Eat Bulaga. I laugh at people reacting vehemently when they feel nsomeone has besmirched their name or their school, or their company, online. I cry at sad parts of movies. I love old school illustrations and drawings, even woodcuts I place in high regard.  I like to get to an appointment an hour early. I don’t like people waiting on me. At the same time, I am loathe to wait for people who are never on time.

I’m an aberration.

I don’t care for Kanye West’s recorded music, but I love every bit of track Moz Def put out. I can listen continuously to Rammstein, Metallica, Rivermaya, The Dawn and maybe throw in a few Classics and Tom Waits in between playlists. I cover my ears on every Nicki Minaj sound on radio. Rishloo, Enigma and Crystal Method I play on my laid back hours. But I am extremely annoyed with videoke singers singing the same song every chance they get. Gimme some live music, but please don’t make everything Bossa. But I like singing.

Not normal.

Am I too radical to declare I do not care for religion, but still believe in God?

Abomination

I have this strange fixation with ramen, boiled food and lots of soup. I once enjoyed a plate of Pasta Carbonara lavishly garnished with salty, spicy bagoong, and it got me hooked. And I don’t care much for fine dining. Street food, turo-turo works for me. But when I eat at someplace expensive, I eat everything. I don’t subscribe to that train of thought of leaving something on your plate, lest they think you a patay-gutom. Fuck you, I love food.

I’m one of the few who still insists on using email for professional transactions, social media is just for advertising and online ranting. If there ever was a reason or cause to rant. I don’t put too much value on titles given to you at work. Hell, I’m a Graphic Artist, yet I can clean the office, run errands, make coffee, and while all of these are occurring everyday, I still manage to handle uploading articles to the entertainment website I used to hold, create collaterrals for print, you know, stuff I’m underpaid for.

Heck.

I even created some video clips for a very special friend for free. What could otherwise have netted me five grand (pesos, friends, in pesos) I gave away for free.

Because I can.

Not normal, I tell you.

I cringe every time someone comments how good my drawings are, asks how much for this and this, and then stands aghast and spews these utterly abhorrent words “Para drawing lang?” (That much for just a drawing?).

I am an alien. Of sorts.

There’s definitely something wrong with me.

2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 3,200 times in 2013. If it were a cable car, it would take about 53 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.