Tuesday, November 29, 2005
I just discovered this morning that my left foot is smaller than my right because my left shoe keeps falling off when I walk. THAT'S SO ODD! My left side is weaker than my right in so many aspects: how I write, my vision and now MY FOOT! I think my left boob's smaller too (is that too much info? Sorry...he he...) Am I the last to know about this? That one side of the body is far more dominant than the other? Anyhow, THAT'S CRAZY!
And just now my co-worker said that there was a newsstory this morning about a girl who kissed her boyfriend after he ate peanuts. She was allergic to peanuts and wasn't seen by a doctor in time to remedy the reaction and she died. My goodness, how awful is that!
Monday, November 28, 2005
This started out as an email but then I started babbling away so I figured, oh what the heck I'll blog it.
I'm not gonna tell any of you that RENT (the movie or the musical) should be put on your must-see list and that you have to like it. I honestly didn't think much of the musical when I saw it 6 years ago, maybe because I didn't catch a lot of dialogue/lyrics. I thought it was about a lot of pretty worn out issues: 1) finding and then hanging onto identity 2) drug-use 3) life-threatening disease 4) the starving artist 5) carpe diem, blah blah. I liked it because the music was more contemporary compared to the classics (i.e. Miss Saigon, Les Mis and Phantom). I really didn't enjoy it so much for the content, but more so because they have a band on stage for crying out loud in lieu of an orchestra. That's cool!
Anyhow, I guess 6 years (that's 525,600 minutes times 6 - he he he...) is enough time to let naive experiences marinate in reflection until they're ready to roast in adulthood. I wasn't THAT crazy about the musical because I didn't relate to it back then, but I do now, more than ever. The movie is still about all the same things I thought were cliche back then, but which I find most valuable about it now: it's profound simplicity. No mistaken identities, no love torn apart by war, no haunting melodies heard through a magical mirror. It's a story about 8 friends who, while trying to survive a life they neither asked nor prepared for, find breath and respite in the face of death.
There's one part that really smacked me in the face - literally. Roger, a struggling musician, tells his roomate Mark, pseudo-writer-filmaker: "Who are you to tell me what I know? What to do? But who, Mark, are you? 'Mark has got his work.' They say, 'Mark lives for his work' and 'Mark's in love with his work.' Mark hides in his work...from facing your failure, facing your loneliness, facing the fact you live a lie. Yes, you live a lie - tell you why. You're always preaching not to be numb when that's how you thrive. You pretend to create and observe when you really detache from feeling alive....For someone who longs for a community of his own, who's with his camera, alone?"
It's all just making me think again. What's all this about? What am I doing? Blogging, taking writing classes, journaling - for what? What am I looking for? Waiting for? Am I any good at this? And who gets to justify my ability or potential? A magazine? A publisher? An editor? Am I seizing THE DAY? Or waiting for it? Holy shit, I'm fighting with reality (or what I think is my reality) and destiny (at least what I hope is my destiny) AGAIN. I hate when I do that. I think I'll just...belt out a Kelly Clarkson song in the shower, compose a corny poem or write a longwinded journal entry...
Friday, November 25, 2005
NO OTHER WAY.
NO DAY BUT TODAY.
I spent the day thinking of everything I was thankful for. Actually, I spent the day thinking of what I'm SUPPOSED to be thankful for. I folded my hands in church this morning and thanked God for everything I always give thanks for: my family, my friends, my home - my very fortunate life in general. But in between my perfunctory bouts of gratitude on Thanksgiving day, it all suddenly felt like a vain attempt to force the essence of this holiday into my system. It was a long day occupied by grocery runs, playtime with Kelsoe, chocolate covered marshamallows (which Tin cleverly called "chollows"), delicious meals and visiting with family. Fatigue chanted perfunctorily: "You HAVE to be thankful. You SHOULD be thankful. YOU are blessed." Don't get me wrong. I was grateful for the enjoyable start to my 4-day weekend. But at 9:45 pm, I was well-worn of energy and gratitude.
At 1:30 am, about an hour ago, my thankfulness was rejuvinated. My cousins, my sister and I went to go see "RENT." I saw the live musical in London in 1999 and I listen to the soundtrack all the time. For whatever reason, I was drawn into the story, the dialogue and the lyrics moreso tonight and I cried more than the few tears I had shed before. The message of the Jonathan Larson's musical somehow hit a different part of my heart this time.
Though I sometimes tell myself that I've got control, and I tell everyone else that the road to my desires in life are laid clearly before me, I can't escape the doubt that I try to keep dormant: AM I EVER GONNA GET TO WHERE I WANT TO GO? TO WHERE I'M PREPARING MYSELF TO ARRIVE? IF I DON'T, HOW WILL I LOOK AT MYSELF IN THE MIRROR? WHAT VALUE WILL MY LIFE HAVE IF I DON'T ACCOMPLISH THIS? And then I heard it:
Seasons Of Love
525,600 minutes, 525,000 moments so dear.
525,600 minutes - how do you measure, measure a year?
In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee.
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife.
In 525,600 minutes - how do you measure a year in the life?
How about love?
How about love?
How about love?
Measure in love.
Seasons of love.
Seasons of love.
525,600 minutes! 525,000 journeys to plan.
525,600 minutes - how do you measure the life of a woman or a man?
In truths that she learned,
or in times that he cried.
In bridges he burned, or the way that she died.
It’s time now to sing out,
though the story never ends let's celebrate
remember a year in the life of friends.
Remember the love!
Remember the love! You got to remember the love.
Remember the love! You know that love is a gift from above.
Measure in love. Share love, give love, spread love.
Seasons of love! Measure, measure your life in love.
Seasons of love.
The worth of a person's life is measured by nothing more than the amount of love he or she emanates; emanates towards family, friends, strangers, self. Not the millions of books you sell, not the mansion in Bel Air, the sports car in the garage or the most popular friends. I think that's what made me cry during the movie, remembering everyone who really and truly matter to me; thinking of everything I waste so much time worrying about when most times, the comfort I seek is that which is most obvious to me if only I'd stop to see it: Love life the way it is presented to me. Stop fighting my reality as if there is a better one which awaits on the other side of my idea of "victory." I have THIS life, THIS moment to live and to love and that's it. Let go of what I think I should be saying, should be doing, be feeling.
And then I heard the clincher:
The heart may freeze or it can burn
The pain will ease if I can learn
There is no future, there is no past
I live this moment as my last
There's only us, there's only this
Forget regret, or life is yours to miss
No other road, no other way
No day but today...
We must let go to know what's right...
I can't control my destiny
I trust my soul
My goal is just to be
There's only now
There's only here
Give in to love
Or live in fear
No other path
No other way
No day but today...
Thursday, November 24, 2005
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Thursday, November 17, 2005
On Monday, my office had dinner at Gordon Biersch to celebrate my co-worker's upcoming wedding. He's leaving for the Philippines this Friday and he'll be a married man on December 10th. Through the course of the evening, everyone was giving the groom advice, warnings, etc. In addition to their anecdotal words of caution, though, they also provided him with insight to the new life he has to look forward to with his new wife. In between their stories of wedding day mishaps, elopements and such, they somehow found moment after moment to pound the pressure on me as the only one in the office who's never been married and who doesn't have any kids. It's Ken's night to get harrassed, people - LAY OFF ME! Hahaha...I wasn't bothered; a shocking non-reaction actually, because conversations that veer towards love and marriage used to make me feel uncomfortable, inadequate, lacking. But I realized they weren't hinting for me to hurry up and get hitched just to annoy me. They were doing it because they have such unique stories of love to tell, that they wish others could experience the same bliss.
Why wait for love to fall on your lap when you're surrounded by it daily? How, when I watch my friends from high school get engaged and then married, can I be angry at a world that has made them so happy? Watching Riza dance with Joe on Saturday caused all loquacity to flee from my tongue. This girl, who I used to eat lunch with on a school bench, whose pages in the yearbook I used to proofread, is a married woman! No words could have rightfully expressed my excitement for their Once upon a time... No such verbiage exists when the heart enraptures the whole of a person in love, as I've witnessed this past year.
In journalism, the introduction of a story that makes you want to read the rest of the article is called a "lead-in." Dating is kind of like the foreword, a hint of things to come. Weddings are more like the lead-ins to marriages. As a guest ("the reader") you're drawn into a couple's first page as husband and wife. I got drawn in SEVEN TIMES this year, and I was hooked every time, hoping and praying thereafter for their stories to be filled with more than 3 wishes, the occasional rescue and the conversion of malice into blessing. Love's oral tradition moves beyond the happy ending in a fairytale. Most times, the ending is just another beginning...
Monday, November 14, 2005
So after 3 months of preparing, I finally took my GRE's this past Saturday and out of a possible 1600, I scored a 1450! AM I A GENIUS OR WHAT?...YEAH RIGHT I WISH! I SOOO didn't even come close to that score! In fact, I scored close to what I scored on the SAT's which is pretty fair, I suppose. I guess I didn't get any smarter. It asks, after you're done taking the test, if you'd like to forfeit your scores and take it again, or see the scores and have it sent to the schools you're applying to. I thought about it for about 15 seconds and decided...NO WAY AM I GONNA STUDY FOR THIS THING AGAIN! So I closed my eyes, clicked on "SUBMIT SCORES" (or something like that) and braced myself for the worst. I couldn't add fast enough, looking at the verbal and quantitative scores itemized on the screen. I added in my head about 5-10 times before I let myself smile. I was done. I'm disappointed that I scored 150 points higher on the quantitative section than the verbal. How is that even possible? Ha ha ha! Anyhow, I'm glad it's done. I get my writing section scores sometime in the next week. To be completely honest, I don't look forward to it. 45 minutes to discuss my side on an issue and then 30 minutes after THAT to analyze an argument? I couldn't get myself to write coherently on Saturday. I HATE timed writing! I'm sad because it should've been the ONE part of the test I felt comfortable in. Unfortunately, the opposite was the case and I'm just going to have to suck it up and find other things that'll give me some sort of credibility on the application. I really appreciate all your prayers and good wishes, everyone! Thanks so much!
Now I get to: catch up on class reading, work on my final project, look for a new job, take more classes, see more schools, suck up to old professors, APPLY and then pray some more. Wow, that sounds like a lot, doesn't it? But a friend of mine said recently, "You know sometimes, you have to juggle and struggle, until you find yourself." And so the search continues...
Sunday, November 13, 2005
Ate said that her class was learning about the letter "O" and they had a brainstorm on words that began with this letter. As visual aid, Ate drew these ideas for them: Orange, octopus, and then there was the owl. Here's what Ate's drawing of an owl looked like. It looks like a freakin' duck, with its wing on the side that looks like a Nike swoosh! My sister said you could call it a "dowl" and it could be a new pokemon! That bump on its neck, I asked her, is that an adam's apple? A cist maybe? And then when I asked her why the owl had a happy face she said, "Because everyone in pre-school smiles!" Apparently owls in Ate's world don't have beaks. She said that after she drew it, her kids looked all confused and said, "Uhhh, Miss Christine, THAT'S not an owl!" HAHAHA!
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Just wanted to take a break from all the rapid inundation of esoteric information. A person can only injest so much at one time. D-day's in less than 2 days, can you believe that? I CAN'T! So in order to ameliorate the perfunctory task at hand, abate the anxiety and attenuate the stress, I thought I'd blog a little. If I do badly on this exam, at least my vocabulary's been aggrandized...he he he...dumb GRE words!
Peaceful, poised and understanding you do not let anyone or anything disturb your innate calm. You are tolerant of others no matter how their behaviours or beliefs differ from your own. Not attached to material or worldly affairs you are free to express your true self. Displaying great wisdom and serenity people are naturally drawn to you for guidance and counsel.
Courage and presence of mind...I SO need to regain that right now. And in order to do this, I must carry on. So until next time, probably after my test, I ask for your prayers. Happy weekend to all!
Monday, November 07, 2005
I always look at pictures whenever I'm in need of ANY type of emotion. This weekend I needed some comic relief. Looking through hundreds of Hawaii pictures from 12 different cameras, I caught this series of images. Just look at the progression of Cile trying to drown me!
And then I feel something tugging at me from below and I suddenly lose my balance and begin to sink...
And then she goes in for the kill! HELP CILE'S TRYING TO DROWN ME! But see all that playfulness? NO ONE CARED! So what if my feet were touching the floor? He he he...
Thursday, November 03, 2005
We all have them. These are some of my favorites. I'm sure there's more that I just don't remember. But these are the ones that stick out in my mind. Everytime I remember them, whatever it is I was worrying about seems to go away.
ME: So my sister asked me if we ever get a dog what I would wanna name it.
IYA: What WOULD you name it?
(Iya gives me a look as if to say, “oh man.”)
ME: Or maybe ARAGORN!
IYA: Aragorn? That's where they’re from, right?
(Now I’M looking at her like, “oh man.”)
ME: Really Iya?
JHOETTE: Man our Rav is so slow now.
CARLO: What do you mean?
JHOETTE: Dude, it’s got no kick.
CARLO: What about Anna’s Rav? Hers PRETTY KICKS.
After 8th grade graduation, Iya went on vacation to the East Coast for about a week
ME: I miss Iya, dude. How long has she been in Philly?
JHOETTE: Philly? What the hell! PINAS MAN!
ME: Philly means PHILADELPHIA DUDE!
Freshman year in high school
ROCHELLE: Wait, 69? So like, are there positions 1 through 68?
Terry, Cile and I are cleaning up our apartment (Exeter).
CILE (cleaning the bathroom upstairs): ANNA!
ME (Terry and I are cleaning downstairs): What!
CILE: Where’s the Formula 405?
TERRY: Formula 409? 405 is a freeway, Cile!
Watching ER at Exeter
LEIA: Hey! It’s that girl!
ME: Kelly Martin?
LEIA (all excited!): Yeah! Becca! From MY SO-CALLED LIFE GOES ON
ME: Ummm, there was a MY SO-CALLED LIFE and a LIFE GOES ON?
Playing word association with Pat, Isa and Andrew at like 2:00 in the morning
ME: LINK! Not Blink silly!
ME and ISA: Ummm…fingerbanking? I think you mean something else, Drew.
ATE TIN-TIN: I’ve never seen ANY of the LORD OF THE RINGS movies
ME: Really Ate?
ATE: Yeah, the only character I know is a guy named Bagley Bagel.
ME: Who the heck is Bagley Bagel?
ATE: That hobbit. Elijah Wood’s uncle in the movie right?
ME: Bilbo Baggins?
ATE: Yeah that’s it.
Edwin tries to be a jackass all the time, but sometimes we victims of such bullying can get our revenge:
ME: It’s so hard to find pants that fit me cuz I’m so short!
ROCHELLE: I know! Whenever I buy pants my mom always has to chop off like 5 inches!
EDWIN: HA HA! I bet you guys can’t even wear BELLY bottoms!
EVERYONE IN THE ROOM: BELL bottoms dumbass!
(Refer to a March 8, 2004 entry for Edwin’s BIGGEST DOH moment)
*****And for the mother of all DOH moments, let’s re-visit one of my most awful ones:
Eric wanted to go ice skating for his 19th birthday and he asked me to help him call ice skating rinks. My friend told me there was a Pickwick Ice Skating Center in Pasadena so I called 411 and asked for, verbatim, “PICKWICK ICE SKATING CENTER,” and they gave me a phone number and I called to ask how late they were open and they said, “midnight.” I was like WOW, there’s an ice skating place open until midnight!
So we had dinner and then headed to PICKWICK according to the directions they gave me. We’re driving from Glendale, down the 134 East…then the 210…then we exit and we’re driving and driving and (I’m in the car with Ryan, Markie, Mark’s bro John and Iya) everyone in the car except me started to worry. “Dude, Amar Road? We’re by Randy’s house!” Mark said. Randy lives in West Covina. So we stopped at a Burger King asking for this one street we couldn’t seem to find and the lady was like, “Oh, you’re almost there.”
So we head out again and then get a phone call from Joe and Eric. I’m not sure how because I can’t remember who had a cell phone back in 1997. Anyhow, Joe and Eric called and said, “Hey, we’re here. When you get to the parking lot, LOOK UP AT THE SIGN.” All of us were like WHAT THE HECK DO THEY MEAN?
So we finally meet up with them and there we saw the sign: PICKWICK WINES AND SPIRITS. I had been given information for a freakin’ LIQUOR STORE!!! I don’t think I’ll ever out-do that little fiasco. But it’s okay because we just went karaoke after and Eric likes to karaoke right?
Oh well...nobody's perfect...
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
Riann, Iya and I took to an Eagle Rock coffee house called SWORK tonight to continue our individual educational quests together. How much studying can three girls really get to these days, right? Before anyone's like, "oh Lord why do they even bother to study together?" I will say that we DID get some studying done. But along with pounding more information into our brains, we had another one of our famous intuitive conversations.
For curiosity's sake, Riann asked me and Iya to think of a guy we "liked" who somehow didn't "fit" into the mold of the others we became interested in. It made all of us ponder our track records, our habits, our "types." Do any of you have "a type?" A certain character of girl or guy who possesses qualities that you're drawn to? To some people this may seem like an easy question. She likes tall guys, funny guys; he likes smart girls, girls with long hair, etc. But to others, having "a type" is a conventional practice they neither care for, much less analyze. But provoked by a surprising curiosity, we sat in silence and seriously thought about it (books, notes, highlighters and pencils laid out on the table of course for later use).
One of us learned that intelligent guys who showed that hint of "dorkiness" are a commodity. Another found that subtle confidence, attached to a certain swagger were attractive. And then there's the girl who seems to fall for the typical "nice guys." So what was it about these boys that made us so crazy? You can't really talk about it in so few words. A blog entry would probably not suffice, but it got the wheels in my head turning. WHY are we attracted to certain qualities, certain types? WHAT does it say about us? WHAT does it make us do?
I told Iya and Riann tonight that when it comes to these things, I'm a masochist. I've fallen for the same kind of guys in the same kinds of circumstances and I reacted pretty much in similar fashion with ALL of them. And as if the hidden desires were not enough to fulfill the painful requirements that unrequitted love entailed, I sought additional suffering; like trying to maintain platonic obligations (i.e. listening to them talk about other girls) without flinching and then crying about it when I realize how crazy I was to think THAT WAS OKAY! Why is that? I may never know. The situation has become less frequent more recently as I make attempts for sanity and growth. To achieve this, those molds have been tucked away for less use. New...NEW IS ALWAYS GOOD.
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
I haven't been inspired to write much these days. Or actually I HAVE had things to write about but as fate would have it, I really don't have the time. I know, I've heard it all before. If there's something you REALLY want to do to, YOU MAKE TIME. But I'm gonna be honest with you all and say how tired I am.
At the risk of sounding like a whining fool, allow me to vent just a little bit if only to get it out of my system. I work 40 hours a week at a job whose vices have overdrawn my patience, I have a 3-hour/week magazine writing class that, truth be told, is not THAT demanding, I've got the GRE's to study for, plus all the social events that I participate in at the VERY MINIMUM.
My only concern is that this is nowhere near as demanding as it COULD be, yet I'm about to keel over cuz I'm so tired! If, by some miraculous circumstance, I get accepted into a writing program, how could I survive when I can hardly handle what I've got on my plate right now? I hear that Christina Aguilera song, "Fighter" playing in my head as well as that old skool favorite, "Give It All You Got" and I just gotta say, it helps sometimes.
Ok, that's enough worrying for tonight. As always, we'll walk as far we can with what we've got and what we can handle, and then cross whatever bridges we come upon. I just pray that what lies beneath is a current of warm water and not a field of razor-sharp rocks.