personal


This is my first blog post for weeks. The reason is because I decided not to write any until I passed an agent for the monitors I’ve been doing since I was promoted. Luckily, either for the agent or for my weeks-long ignored blog, someone managed to get 93% for her quality score. And now I’m back here.

The past weeks were rollercoaster rides in all aspects. From learning how to cook pochero to dating a self-confessed bitch, from appreciating practical spontaneous poetry to letting someone mess up with my hair, it feels like I was born a hundred times more. It does not even include the several firsts of my new office and some others that , however worth posting, seems not proper to be mentioned here.

While incidentally enjoying life, not a few people asked me the past few days if I am happy. Well, given that their question was asked in different situations and contexts, I gave no standard answer. The only thing that keeps on being delivered by my tendency to overanalyze and be talkative is my dichotomy between—- and relativity of —-pleasure and happiness. But that is, of course, another story.

Pondering further though and an inspirational message from a friend led me to something. Another complex concept is conceived and it is something worth asking everyone; Are we here to make a living or get a life? Tell me your answer people as both are worth an explanation from either side of your gray matter.

I know that the title sounds like a daydream but it is the place that I have to find after being promoted to a Quality Coordinator position.

Influenced by the famous fastfood TV advertisement, everyone that heard of the news has a single message, burger shouted (or sent through SMS) three times in a very jubilant manner. Now, death is threatened as this world’s equalizer.

Well, this new job has a lot of challenges. The Spidey movie quote echoes everytime I think of the many things to be done.

Now, back to my question, if you know any place where burgers are cheap, I’ll buy you a drink. Sorry, I definitely need to devour on capital Z’s.

Ms. Goodman,

You know who you are. Your proposal, I admit, is a bit tempting. Years ago, such a possibility actually lingered in our minds.

The possibility of living together is actually a dream we once aimed to realize until you found out something that changed your mind. I only knew it when I saw a photo from one of our common friends. You may ask him about it and he’ll tell the smile he saw on my face that day.

You know for sure that your seduction still works on me. Actually, that same day you came to my place to talk, we did something that will surely make your husband mad or, worse, a murderer.

But it actually came from you, I am a rational person. And I’m sorry if I almost rejected you. I know that some of my clarificatory questions may have doused water on your fire but somehow it is necessary. Especially that our world is going too emotionally mindless recently.

I considered your proposal, I already confessed that. But not after thinking that I should not make decisions during high moments of emotion; happy, sad or angry. May be, we’re too happy that moment. Good thing both of us just need some taps to be awakened. And you understood me.

Don’t worry. Unlike others, I don’t consider your predicament as a point of no return. I just want you to be more circumspect as we can never afford to be consumed by our own desires.

By the way, tomorrow’s a Tuesday. I’ll see you again.

William

I have to explain to my team leader and teammates why I can’t attend the Batangas team get-away. And I told them the truth. I won’t miss this year’s Labor Day protests. As our teammate (and future team lead) Jeremy puts it, “Wala na pala tayong no choice.”

My shift ends at noon that day so I had to rush downstairs to call anyone from the march to updated where should I proceed. I immediately called Aaron of Sanlakas Youth after grabbing my phone out of my locker.

Pa-Mendiola na kami. Recto daw ‘ata ito.”, the Cebuano student leader, sounding not too sure, answered when I asked where they are already. His stay for 2 semesters at the San Beda College of Law before seems not enough to learn the confusing streets of Metro Manila’s urban jungle.

I, then, rode a cab thinking that heavy traffic is expected along the usual jeepney route. As always, I navigated the cab through Quezon City and Manila’s inner streets and I was already at Mendiola right when the frontline is about to cross the Recto-Legarda intersection.

The sun is hot enough to give other teams back at work the impression that I attended our team’s beach activity. The heat is really scorching that not a few protesters can’t fight the temptation of going to the sidewalks, where there are a lot more shade than in the streets, to rest.

The Mendiola program is short. I greeted several comrades, waved and danced with a flag and sang the Internationale with the rest of the working class on our birthday. Yes, I am officially a part of the labor sector.

After the program, we, nearly all of us in our 20’s (except for Rasti… hehe), ate at a nearby hole-in-the-wall carinderia along Gastambide. We rested there for a while and with our stomachs full, walked towards España as all of us are QC-bound.

Pia Montalban, the blogger-activist from the group PUNYAL that I met at the Student Summit weeks ago, went with me at home to drink a couple of Super Dry with some political pep talks as pulutan. She actually requested a talk back then regarding my take on several issues, mainly political and some organizational about the left.

She went home at about 8pm and I proceeded to a new hang-out along Kalayaan Avenue to dine and drink with a Aaron, Rasti, Jofti, Rhodz and Job. Sato, Iris and Jan of UP Diliman came along afterwards.

A few quaffs of a German beer, the name of which I can’t pronounce and the spelling I can’t remember, capped my first May 1 as a salaried slave. Happy birthday to me!

Several warnings, from word-of-mouth to text and email, about the dangers of consuming processed food in general and instant noodles in particular seems to be ineffective to me. My appetite just has some kind of an addiction to such types of food. And add to that my lifestyle which sometimes require me to eat in a 12-minute eat-and-run fashion.

And because I saw at Hi-Top that the more affordable Yakiudon (only at P17.50) could be an alternative to my favorite Yakisoba, I bought a cup each flavor and tried it for the next three mid-shift hunger at the office.

I must say that except for the Garlic Chicken variant, which tastes like garlic rice if not for the obvious noodle texture, Yakiudon is really a good buy. Though nothing can beat Yakisoba’s Spicy Chicken, Yakiudon’s Beef BBQ (the sweet one) and Chili Crab (the seafood variant) flavors are good enough to be considered as alternative especially that most of us are slowly learning the value of economy in these trying times.

I hope that the next time I visit the supermarket to buy several cups of my new favorite instant noodles, it would still be affordable as the price of rice tends to pull all food prices up.

For the past few days, I got the chance to visit Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila for a couple of reasons. As an employment requirement, I have to get my Transcript of Records from the University Registrar. And I also volunteered as a facilitator for a Student Summit co-organized by our resident members from the Bukluran Student Alliance.

Regarding my academic documents that our HR Department requires me to submit, I was, at first, bad trip for having to go through the hassle of not enjoying a rest day. Just the mere idea of commuting from Quezon City to downtown Manila is discouraging enough especially these hot days of summer.

But when I landed in the place that housed my scholarly, activist and fraternity activities for a few years, I never thought that it’ll nurse some sentimentalism and inject enjoyment in this tiring world.

The offices that I need to visit gave me the chance to reminisce some scenes especially of arguments with the PLM powers-that-be, learn of some new people in some old positions (a few are even contemporaries during my PLM days) and get long lost friends’ contacts (as two employees as moms of former orgmates— which I have to admit somehow hastened the usually tedious process of getting a clearance… hehe).

One of the best scenes, albeit trivial, was the part when I saw English Professor Adil (not to be confused with Opposition Spokesperson and PLM President Adel Tamano ;p) at the Celso Carunungan Library. The story of a friend that submitted I Will Survive lyrics in prose style to Prof. Adil as an essay assignment almost made Conan D’ Librarian (yes, that mood-swinging librarian is still there) mad at me. What’s worse is that my friend’s “essay” got an uno!? Dumb Adil. The same dumb Adil, I must say, as she still looks clueless on what she should do. She is actually standing in front of a table looking around the library the whole time that such a wacky scene is flashing in my mind.

The second part of my “homecoming” is more political than the first; a student summit entitled Youth Challenge. But as we’re enjoying the intermission by folk singer Noel Cabangon, another scene flashed cerebrally that if I remember it right, it seems that it was decade since a nationally-relevant activity was held at the Justo Albert Auditorium. I think it is due to Manila Mayor Lito Atienza’s Pro-Gloria politics and his cohort former PLM President Tayabas’ conservatism.

I can still remember that then Anakbayan Secretary-General Renato Reyes was one of the speakers then together with Senator Raul Roco. Imagine that Nato is now the spokesperson of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan! That reveals my age. Hehe. The same activity actually persuaded me to go find another activist group other than LFS (Anakbayan failed to establish a chapter in PLM until this day) because Reyes can’t answer simple questions straightly then, way far from his eloquence in his present TV interviews.

Back to the summit, the chance of being one of the facilitators also led me to the conclusion that there is still no radicalization among the students. Yes (to my and a lot of people’s dismay), that is even after the NBN-Lozada-bubukol po ito-probinsyanong intsik-soap opera.

Some of the students are still sharp and intelligent though, I must say. I can’t even dare assert that they are passive as attending a political summit while their friends may be enjoying Boracay or Puerto Galera is being active in itself, or actively curious at least.

Well, at least, it is better than the time of ebb. Student leaders and social movements, in PLM and in other schools, should capture the youth’s imagination for them to be aroused into progressive action for social change.

If they can’t do it, they might as well go back to school and assess what made them act when they’re much younger or mere students before.

I stumbled upon a website entitled Hacking the Sony Ericsson W810i. The site looks promising as it claims to help everyone not just in “hacking” but also in pimping (modifying and customizing) that particular model of the Sony Ericsson product line.

I will have to check the site everytime though if it’ll effect any brand change on my fingers affected by the Nokia-is-the-most-user-friendly kitikitext culture. We’ll see.

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