moment of clarity

warning: this contains truth and fiction. the lines are meant to be extremely blurred.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

looking, forward

for sanity, fun and fulfillment, i wish i could:

* wall climb, bike, and throw threes
* go to the beach
* watch the Kami nAPO muna concert
* have the rain bathe me
* read leisurely the little prince and cathcher in the rye
* go to the mall and walk aimlessly
* jog or walk around the academic oval
* go to my favorite church, the one that looks like a spaceship
* have him sing chasing cars to me
* do some GMA-bashing in written, objective form
* learn more about Lebanon
* start playing percussions
* get serious about the sport of swimming
* do yesterday what i am doing now
* tell myself three months ago it's gonna be alright after all
* rest well, breathe easy, and sleep deep
* have my vinyl records guy take my breath away

for now i'd have to settle with, and do the following instead:

* walk in the garden and love the doggies
* sing uninvited in the shower
* watch mtv and dance to justin's sexy back
* take baths leisurely
* read maritime law like it would salvage me from drowning
* let my mind wander to Oktoberbest
* pray in this square refuge of mine
* learn chasing cars lyric and music by heart
* put on my apathetic hat when i feel like being seditious
* blog like it would heal the world
* promise myself i would not get to 30 without playing the drums
* do now what's left of yesterday's ought-to-haves
* tell myself that three months from now things might not be okay, again
* rest assured that shit happens but i happen to handle shit well
* know that my vinyl records guy would find me breathtaking

Monday, August 21, 2006

*

i've been hanging in here for quite a while, being the formidable person that i am supposed to be. i've been holding on and keeping my pace...lapping towards wholeness. everyday, i bear with it. everyday i push further and fight against lunacy...because i was told that that's the way to gratification.

if only i could halt, drop everything and run away from this tired day...i'd go and stay by the sea. there, i could freely feel all the pain that binds me and finally let go. the pursuit for security would stop because the stars will shine brighter than all doubt. my imbibed,phony toughness will reveal its brittleness against the sand. my soul will let its shackles fly with the wind, and the boundaries of the mind will flow with the waves. the water at my feet would tell me there's no need to catch up...because the world will not change despite failure and brokenness. that day by the sea would witness me shedding pretention and embracing fallibility.

the sun is as tired as i am. at the end of the day, the ocean fetches it and lets it rest easy. because every now and then the sun should break free from its proud brightness. because sometimes, damp and cold is how life ought to be. because we don't always have to feel warm and keep dry. because it's okay to have life suck. most of the time life is easy but it makes little sense. and there are times when it couldn't get anymore difficult but it makes perfect sense. it's just a matter of taking it all in, and letting go.

i will let go, maybe not soon enough...but i will get there. and when i do, pain would have settled down and taught me what it yearns to. that when you are given what you really need you tend to throw life away. that when you go after what you ought to be, you easily get distracted by what you want at the moment. i am still quite far from that day when i can romance with my past and welcome the freer version of me. for now, i'd content myself with the flicker of the candle light and the suffocating duty of self-assurance. i would take comfort in the not-so-gentle raindrops and the fierce habit of auto-correction.

the ocean beckons but i'm just too strong to give in. it won't be long until i let this world i'm keeping together crumble. it's gonna cave in...not just yet. but when it does, i'll be glad to finally feel small again. because having to be bigger than everything coming my way is just insane. because imposing wholeness upon myself just doesn't feel right. obligatory strength and prescription sanity just don't make me feel happy. and, what is sanity and strength good for if you ain't happy?

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

tired beyond recognition

in the history of my universe this, so far, has been the most tired i got. that rambling didn't sound as clearly as it should have. anyway, napakalapit na ng bar. i can almost taste the anxiety of the first sunday. unfortunately, my energy level took a nosedive 72 hours ago. the backpain got annoyingly persistent. the concentration got zapped by fatigue. the loneliness of weird sleep cycles outdid the hunger pangs by a mile. so, i try desperately to get back to "kill"mode.

i hope that happens soon enough, preferably after this blog entry. or after this edgy movie i'm watching. all it takes is a jumpstart, one moment of inspiration. and then life will be beautiful again. i hope that thing i last said could be half true, even for just a fleeting moment. right now, life is just mean and cryptic. "you know how life presents you with situations but they are not what they appear to be," it's been like that for a while. it's tiresome. whining is tiresome. but it sure helps in the unloading.

breaktime's over. i have to get back to studying. if i can't learn fast, i could at least try to learn well. i'd go with my own slowpoke pace and hope for the best. besides, the history of my universe says crap happens to everyone at some point. and that "the best things in the world are usually done by tired people".

Sunday, August 13, 2006

didn't mean to

all i wanted was to be friends with you again. i swear, i didn't know it wasn't a done deal yet. i'm sorry but i can't force myself to want what you want. the world is cruel. it sucks to get hurt but it sucks just as well when you end up hurting a well-meaning person. so, much as i don't want to deal you this kind of pain, i would. because, as i've learned the hard way, it's the only way you could lead yourself to that next person...to that happiness which i couldn't give.

you're right. nine years is such a long time...to wait, to hope. but i was in the dark about everything. nine years is such a long time not to tell someone what you ought to. i guess it's useless to think about who's to blame. let's not make it anymore difficult than it already is.

some lives are meant to be lived apart from those you deem most important. it all ends here...i'm sorry.

balagoong

andami na nagsabi sakin, "baka gusto mong next year na lang magtake". hmm, kung pag-iisipan ko talaga nang matindi yan, may saysay naman yung ganung suhestyon. lalo na kung manggagaling sa mga taong nakakakilala talaga sa'yo at nakakaalam ng mga pinagdaanan mo. salamat rai at andrea sa lakas ng loob na kwestyunin ang kahibangan ko na maglakas ng loob. at ngayon, mas desidido na nga ako. dahil hindi naman ito tungkol lang sa kung gaano ako kahanda. malaking bagay rin kasi sa usapin na ito ang, "saan pa bako pupunta?"

kahit ano pang ibato sakin ngayon, tatawanan ko na lang e. sobrang manhid na siguro ako. o mas maganda sabihin na mas matatag na kasi ako ngayon. walang pagpapanggap.tanggap na lang ng tanggap, wala nang tanung tanong. hindi ko man maintindihan kung anung silbi ng lahat ng kaguluhan, masaya na lang akong malaman na masyado akong matapang para sumuko nang ganun-ganun na lang. sabi nga ng professor ko, "what is this snaffu all about?"

wala akong maisagot, kahit sa tanong na "bakit ka pa magte-take ngayon?" i just feel i should. di ko naman nararamdaman na papasa ako. hindi naman din ako hangal na tatalon na lang dahil lang sa pride. alam mo ba yung pakiramdam na parang sobrang olats ka na sa laro pero game ka pa rin? kasi mas gagaan ang pakiramdam mo kung sinubukan mo kahit na balagoong ka pa, dahil nga umpisa pa lang lampa ka na? yung tipong silent dignity of someone tired yet not defeated. ganun. wala nang tanung tanong, basta fight na lang.

makailang beses mang tingnan, hindi na nga talaga lohikal itong desisiyon na'to e. pero maraming bagay ang hindi naipapaliwanag nang rasyonal na pag-iisip. kaya mungkahi ko na lang sa mga kaibigan ko na nagugulumihanan, basta samahan nyo na lang ako kapag panahon na nang paghuhukom, abogado o hindi...hindi naman habangbuhay na lang taya, di ba? di ba! :) pero, habang may buhay pwede tayo mag mahaba-habang kwentuhan..at inuman.

(was about to delete this entry. then,i realized a lot of you send support and prayers my way...thanks.)

unbroken

it's not fair. life ain't. but the thing is, it's not fair to everyone. that's where the fairness comes in. so, in the end, what really matters is how you deal. and when you do decide on something, you better make sure you decide accordingly...or at least, according to what your heart really wants at the moment.

it's not easy to know what's right for you. what's right is not necessarily what's easy. it would have been convenient if handbooks were handed out to us just when we officially become adults, when the things we do could potentially ruin or build lives, ours and of those who care for us as well. just imagine..."how not to screw up", "how to make your parents proud", "how to avoid psycho boyfriends", "how to make things right", "how to keep good friends", and "how to avoid regrettable mistakes". that would be terribly convenient, and conveniently devastating.

having to consult manuals to navigate life as an adult would probably make me more freaked out than i already am now. i guess i'm thankful that, as it is,i only have to compete with myself, to get better the next opportunity i get. besides, opportunities come in bundles when we really try to be aware. it would have really sucked had i been forced to gauge how i was doing based on the next guy's performance. screwing up just seems a lot better when i do it on my own terms, and not when i have to be careful not to be a bigger loser than everyone else.

that's just it. it doesn't matter if i lose every once in a while, long as i stay in the game. there's no knowing for sure what's ahead anyway. this life was not meant to be like basketball. just like rico of rivermaya said, "hindi lang naman iisa ang pwede maging champion, di ba?"

i don't have to be too strong for failure just to prevail. i can't screw it up too much such that it can't be fixed. people who care about me will be done proud when i take those unsure steps just to try. unstable boyfriends might try and wreak havoc in my rather sober life and i will cope just in time. unplanned events might distract me from relationships that matter most but i will not let the grasp get too loose. there will always be might-have-beens and shouldn't-haves but i will not let the learning escape me. things can't always be made right but i can always keep my heart still, knowing i did what i could. and that tomorrow i will work more on the woulds than the shoulds.

apologies to those who tried to put me down, it just ain't gonna happen. i am king of this life, even if i don't have a crown to show for it...even if i still struggle to make myself a litlle less broken each day. lately, a lot of life sucked big time yet i am still king. how fair is that?

*lovingly written for good friends and family who help keep me together. god bless you with strength.

i gotta have

around this time of the day i stop and drop whatever im reading because my brain stops functioning...because i fail to find relevance and purpose halfway through the reviewer i'm cramming into my brain. because my mind flies off into things more fulfilling and breathtaking. translation: i need to get inspired. and so, i write...or read anything that serves as testimony to the wonder that is life.

though my life has not necessarily been amazing,i can't stop thinking about how everything else is. screened and censored as my thoughts are, they circle on why each new day is a testament to the power of new beginnings. i feel detached from the rest of the world, from myself, when i don't get to express how my waking moments teach me how faith could change everything and why change can be good. nerdyak as it may sound, faith is such a powerful thing and love and all the crap that come with it are actually for real.

these days a lot of people are running on nothing but faith and whatever else it is that keeps the world from destroying itself. because of it, hanging on which might otherwise seem stupid becomes a brave thing to do. because of it, the rather thin line between courage and foolishness becomes a defined boundary between success and failure.

but of course, faith is just a key that leads to a bunch of keys (as the author of my reviewer quotes from Roger Williams). faith brings with it courage and appreciation. courage to battle because "this too shall pass", and appreciation because when all this is over the more important imprints come from the journey. when you believe in tomorrow you won't tend to live like today's all you've got. and so, you get to slow down and cherish not only the ephemeral. (haha, very "The Little Prince").

becoming aware of the great need to overcome and the greater need for changing oneself in order to overcome has been the best awakening so far. but an awakened mind entails a heart strengthened and a soul renewed. and, all that can thrive on that piercing though puny hint of believing. believing that one glorious day i will be able to fulfill my purpose. and that one fine day, some other believer will allow me to let him take my breath away.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Ligaya

Cutterpillow Album Launch, 1995
Third year high school pa lang ako nu'ng ni-release
ang "Cutterpillow." Sa unang pagkakataon ay nakatungtong ako sa UP
Diliman. Kabado akong pumayag na sumama sa mga kaklase pero atat
akong sumakay sa bus na tayuan. Sa kahabaan ng Quezon Avenue pilit
kong kinumbinsi ang sarili na tama ang desisyon ko, "may libre namang
album kasama ang tiket e." Masaya naman e, bahala na ang sermon.

Matapos ang dalawang oras na biyahe ay nasa Philcoa na kami.
Maraming tao, mahaba ang pila sa sakayan ng jeep. Naglakad kami
papuntang Sunken Garden, at doon tuluyan na akong na-in love sa
musika ng Eraserheads. Kasabay nito, lutang akong nahumaling sa ganda
ng UP at namangha sa ambiance at kultura.

Maraming taon na rin akong nasa UP. Ilang taon din naging
inspirasyon ang panulat ni Ely Buendia para sa'kin. Ilang kanta rin
ng E'heads ang naging tagapagkwento ng mga eksena sa buhay ko,
tagapaglahad ng mga damdamin. Hindi ako pantas sa musika pero alam ko
na tulad ko, marami sa henerasyon ko nag nakahanap ng solace sa
lyrics at tunog ng kanta ng E'heads. Ika nga ng artist, "[Ang mga
kanta nila ay] soundtrack ng buhay ko."

Bagamat walang extraordinary sa mga ito, ang mga kanta nila
ay nagsilbing ugnayan -ng mga taong uhaw sa kung anuman ang
makapagbibigay ng buod ng mga concerns nila, ng ubod ng ng existence
nila. Ang mga lyrics ay honest, raw, at walang pagpapanggap kaya
madaling maka-relate kahit sino. Simple pero may saysay. Mahusay
nilang nailalatag ang mga angas at simpleng kilig sa buhay. Dagdag pa
rito, hindi maikakaila ang tatak UP, ang impluwensya ng kulturang UP
sa lyrics at mood ng musika nila.

Ultraelectromagneticjam, 2005
Makalipas ang sampung taon nang paglagi sa UP at apat na taon
matapos i-release ang huling album ng Eraserheads (Carbon Stereoxide,
2001), nag-release ng album ng covers ng ilang E'heads hits,
performed by various artists. Niyaya along manuod ng Law blockmates
ko, may libreng album daw. Parang dati, kaso ngayon cd format na at
sa University Theater na ang concert. Ngayon, matatapos na ang formal
education ko sa UP at ang E'heads ay icon na- nagpatuloy na sa sari-
sariling gawain at binibigyang tribute ng mga kapwa musikero at mga
fans.

Hindi madaling ipaliwanag ang significance ng E'heads sa mga
tumatangkilik sa kanilang musika. Marami ang nalungkot sa pagtatapos
ng E'heads era, at higit na mas nakararami ang nagbibigay pugay at
pasasalamat sa kanila. Sabi nga ni Ebe Dancel ng Sugarfree, marami
ang umiyak nung araw ng formal announcement ng pag-disband nila.
Karamihan sa artist na nagperform sa "Ultraelectromagneticjam" ay
nagsabi na ang E'heads ay nagbigay daan para maging successful ang
ibang Pinoy bands. Naging instrumental daw ang E'heads sa pagbukas ng
kamulatan ng mga Pilipino sa panibagong tipo ng tugtugin. Dahil sa
kanila, tinanggap ng Pinoy audience ang alternative Filipino music-
orihinal at may sariling kakilanlan.

Sabi nga ni Mcoy Fundales, ng Orange and Lemons, ang E'heads
ay nagbigay inspirasyon sa isang buong henerasyon at sa sangkatutak
na mga banda. "Just keep on writing original songs," payo raw ng
Eraserheads sa Orange and Lemons nu'ng minsang nagkasabay sila sa UP
Fair. Marami pang ibang artists at banda ang nagbigay testimonya sa
legacy ng E'heads. Hindi mabibilang ang laksa-laksang taong hanggang
ngayon ay nagpapatunay na ang mga buhay nila ay hinubog at binigyang-
kulay ng E'heads. "Iyon bang tipong pwede mong kantahin habang nag-
iinuman kayo." "Ang E'heads naririnig ko kahit sa pagtulog." "Sana
may gumawa rin ng thesis ko." "They gave other artists a chance in
the Filipino music industry." Ganyan kalaganap ang music at influence
nila. Ganyan kaigting ang passion at appreciation para sa E'heads.

Para sa Eraserheads, na naging importanteng parte ng buhay sa
loob at labas ng UP, isang pasasalamat. Para sa UP, na patuloy na
humuhubog ng karakter at sining ng mga nagdaraan ditto -icon man o
hindi-isang pagdadakila.

"Naaalala n'yo pa ba, binigyan namin kayo ng ligaya."
--Ely Buendia, Para sa Masa