This happened almost a year ago but my Christmas present to myself this year is to tell you all about it so you can laugh at/with me.
One time, I was looking to spend some extra cash because my wallet was getting too overcrowded and I decided to go spend an afternoon in Mall of Asia. I forgot why I was there, I was probably meeting with a fellow animator or something, but what does it matter, because that’s not the point. The point is: I was sipping lattes in Starbucks smoking, cogitating and totally minding my own business when all of a sudden this really hot chick took the table next to mine. I knew I had to talk to her, so I took a deep breath and approached her. Then I asked her if I could borrow the newspaper on her table because I’m smooth like that. She said it wasn’t hers anyway so I took it and walked away. Yeah, that’s how I flirt. No wonder I’m single. I thought I might as well read the newspaper because I had it now anyway and all the while I beat myself up inside my head because of how stupid my approach was.
A few minutes later, she walked up to my table and told me, “Hi, I don’t know you but I want you to father my children.” I choked on my coffee. Then she put her hands impatiently on her hips and asked, “Well?”
I probably misheard the first part of the question because she wasn’t really asking to have sex with me. Yeah, she was just asking if we could exchange cigarettes. She was smoking a different brand, I was smoking a different brand, she wanted mine, so on and so forth. I gave her one of mine and she gave me one of hers and then I said, “I would’ve just given it to you if you asked for it.”
And oh my God, she looked back at me, gave me the cutest smile I have ever seen in my life and then I died. The end.
I mean, who does that? Was she into me? Who asks to exchange cigarettes with a total stranger, that is, of course, if she wasn’t the least bit interested in me in the first place? Oh well. I’m only like this because half my friends and relatives are asking/pressuring me about marriage. I’m 22 years old ! What the hell, right?
My grandmother asked me when I was planning to get married. Then she proceeded to tell me about how one of the younger guys in the community (he’s 19) is married with kids now. She was all, “Look at Ace, he’s got a wife now,” and I was all “Yeah? Well, I have a future.”
Then two of my friends became a couple and some of my other friends told me I’m getting left behind. I told them, “I don’t think having a girlfriend means moving forward in life. Look at you, you’ve been with your boyfriend for almost a decade and you’re more miserable than I am.”
I’m single, yes, but I secretly don’t want to be single but I also secretly don’t want to be in a relationship. It’s like a chapel inside a hospital. The place saves lives but it makes space for the possibility that sometimes, it can’t. I know, it’s a horrible analogy but it’s the closest one I could think of.
For the record, I am not going to get married until I reach the ripe old age of 30 and I’m a millionaire. So next time you feel like asking me, why don’t you go f*cking die in a hole.
Here’s a recap of my life so far…
It all started while I was threshing some wheat in the backyard when I realized somebody was watching me all the time. He introduced himself as an angel of the Lord and told me I needed to free my people from the foreigners who were trespassing in our lands. So I gathered 300 men, fought the invading Midianites and cleverly defeated them.
Afterwards, I was considered a Master Artist and Sculptor of 20th and 21st Centuries, covering a broad spectrum of genres including Abstract, Impressionism, Modernistic, Portraits and Sculpture. I created almost 20,000 pieces of work, plus my world famous masterpieces, the Gideon Holocaust Collection which I did during most parts of the 1940’s.
Then I spent some time in New York. I got pretty bored with my life so I decided to attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where I earned my BSME back in 1956. I also took my master’s degree course from the Sloan School of Management, also in MIT. I became the CEO and Chairman of the Gartner Group from 1979 to 1991. After, I raised up to $15 million in several tranches to fund a new and innovative group I called the GiGa Information Group in 1995. The group was so successful I was able to generate profits from 0 to $65 million in a matter of four years.
Life being rich soon became tiring so I went out and ventured in the realm of medicine where I became so successful, they named a medical platform after me, the Global Infectious Diseases Epidemiology Network or GIDEON for short. As of 2005, I was able to catalog up to 300 infectious diseases and 250 vaccines for use in the world.
That was when I realized I was immortal and a part of special form of mutants called the Externals and the adventure continues…
I haven’t seen Cinema in a long time and I was excited about going to Marj’s shoot, helping out and everything like old times. But things have clearly changed. Although I’m sure I’ll continue being friends with some of them, I don’t think I’ll ever work with any of them again.
I didn’t bug anybody during the shoot. I did what I was supposed to do as part of the production design team. I stayed out of the way on things I don’t know anything about. That was the start. My mood changed on the opening billboard shot. Everything was going well then we took a short break. Jed approached me about the problem with the Barangay permit we were talking about earlier, and I volunteered to help her. Next thing I knew, Razor-edge Redge was yelling my name across the set and accusing me of being a cause of delay. My mind went, “Motherfucker.” Well, she was the Assistant Director, so I understand it’s her responsibility to be annoying but she’s just so exceptionally good at it. I know it’s very unfair to judge her because she’s probably tired from being an asshole on other shoots so I just reminded myself that I was there to help Marj and that Redge was just the occasional bitch you have to deal with maturely sometimes, so I didn’t mind it and went back to work with a smile on my face and a song in my heart.
Then, I remembered I have to tell my mother I won’t be coming home that night because the shoot will extend up to early next morning. Unfortunately, my phone’s battery was dead so I had to find a charger. I already found a place where I could charge up. At the back of the set, there was a socket where another crew member’s phone was plugged. That was 5:30pm. I went back there and unplugged it at 8:45pm honestly thinking that its battery is probably full now, after all it’s been more than three hours. So I happily charged my phone so I can finally check messages and send a text to my mother. Two minutes later, I came back to the socket only to find that my phone had been kicked out and the other phone was plugged in again. I didn’t know the name of the motherfucker who owned the Motorola phone. I just know that he’s the asshole taking stills for the shoot. But he topped up the thrilling events of my night so A.D. Redge, I respectfully ask you to eat your fucking heart out.
Gosh, I wonder how difficult it is to carry around a clipboard and yell orders at everyone as opposed to, say, carry a sixty-kilo wooden cabinet up two flights of stairs!
Several sequences and takes later, PMS-Mode Assistant Director Redge wasn’t about to let the asswipe who took still photographs out-bitch her, so she decided to snap at me again. I admit, last time was totally my fault. I shouldn’t have helped Jed. I mean, gosh, why would I try to be helpful in a night full of stressful work? Why wasn’t I following Miss Redge’s exemplary grace and just be a bitch about it? I’m sure showing the hard working people around you how much you don’t appreciate them helps out a lot to boost their morale. We were doing the dining room scene and I snuck in quietly from the back to catch a glimpse of the climactic drama. Suddenly, Redge yelled angrily/normally at me, “GID, WAG KA GAGALAW!”. If I had a burning cigarette at hand, I swear I would’ve flicked it angrily/normally at her.
After that, I just pretty much stayed out of everyone’s way. I wouldn’t want to give Troll Queen Regina Regla a reason to find more faults. I was so good at what I was doing that when I was ordered to do something, I can casually say, “No.” But don’t worry, I wasn’t wasting any of the shoot’s budget. I didn’t take anything from the set after Redge have clearly showed me I’m dead weight.
I didn’t make a scene at the shoot because it was Marj’s shoot and I know she worked hard for it. The least I could do was show her respect and refrain from adding more worries to her already insurmountable level of stress. Besides, my role wasn’t exactly that big. I’m just part of the production design team, a crew from the art department, an anonymous cog. Compared to, say for example, the Assistant Director, my part is definitely trivial. What could I possibly contribute to the shoot except do heavy lifting and other manual labor? And what is the Assistant Director’s role? Let’s see, he or she helps out the director. Something that nobody else can do. Gosh, I wonder how difficult it is to carry around a clipboard and yell orders at everyone as opposed to, say, carry a sixty-kilo wooden cabinet up two flights of stairs!
I’m so glad I attended the shoot.
Every once in a while I still go into this emo (short for emotive or super ultra emotive) state which gets me in the mood for songs which sing about how horribly depressing life is. It doesn’t linger. Not since I discovered some new bands whose songs greatly redefine emo. The lyrics are a long way from optimistic but their riffs and hooks and their overall music are generally just too catchy and upbeat. I don’t know what works for you but to me, it’s a good way to get out of my sad and sorry emo-ness and go happy hardcore for the rest of the day.
While Fall Out Boy and Panic! At the Disco’s songs are great for this purpose, let me introduce you to their fellow label-mate and equally rocking band: The Academy Is… (no seriously the ellipsis is part of their band’s name and not my emo way of ending sentences). I like them because their songs are catchy, that’s it. End of story. I don’t care about how they can really capture the true meaning of heartbreak or how you can really feel the anguish in their lyrics, personally I think being sad is a choice and I hate being sad so I choose not to be. Now, anger, as destructive as it may be, gets results better than being perky or morose and I consider it a way to move things along, you know, shake things up a little bit. But I’m talking about The Academy Is… and not about how ridiculous it is to be emo so let’s move on.
If you like the musical stylings of Fall Out Boy or the borderline histrionic vocals of Panic! At the Disco, then I recommend The Academy Is… which is basically a combination of both. I once saw this online forum that compared FOB, P!ATD, Paramore and some other emo band with TAI. The verdict was unclear but who cares? To me their music takes me away from being sad and that’s a good thing. I think the reason why these bands write and sing these songs about love, loss and hate is so you, the listener, won’t have to. Just listening to them release is a kind of release for you too. So it’s therapeutic in a way.
Anyway, they don’t really fit the qualifications to be considered Rocket Powered Stuff. Actually, this is more of an FYI for those out there who are tired of girls pants and black nail polish and are really desperate to get their greasy hair out of their face. You should try out these bands and wear something happy tomorrow. It’s not the end of the world so continue living and reading my blog for more Rocket Powered Stuff from around the world!
I think I’m old enough to know that sometimes, no matter how much we plan things to go a certain way, there’s always a chance that it won’t. There’s always something that gets in the general way of our plans. It could be some small overlooked detail in the preparation, an unexpected event that takes precedence over the current state of things, or it could be some drunk A-hole who decided to take a piss on your new pair of shoes, but whatever obstacle fate sends our way, I’ve also learned that nine times out of ten, there’s nothing we can do about it but accept it and find a way to get around it. I have looked forward to several things I planned for the past weekend and, as always, the disappointments were disappointing, the frustrations were frustrating, and my moods were supernaturally annoying.
My brother and I were supposed to have a one-on-one match last Sunday, the showdown that was always meant to be: Defense of the Ancients! I looked forward to it because I really thought my brother was good at the game and I was so excited that I can finally have someone to face me besides the usual AI, which after several weeks gets so predictable and boring. So anyway, three hours, four rounds, and thirty-three embarrassing losses later, I got bored because my brother turned to be such a weakling. I thought when I finally faced my brother on a DotA battle, it’d be exciting. Oh well, Mai was right, victory is boring.
Meanwhile, the little girl I’ve been tutoring at Math came by while my brother and I were out playing at some computer shop deep in the heart of Dasmariñas. I didn’t think she’d come over because it was a Sunday night. Apparently she did, and so I missed her. She’ll be back tomorrow, I know she will. Besides, when I agreed to her mother when she asked me to tutor her at Math I didn’t give guarantees about my schedule. My conscience is clear.
By the way, I think I need to share this abysmal Math textbook that little girl has. She’s eleven years old and she’s studying in one of those mushrooming private schools all over the rural world. I’m helping her with fractions and when I took a look at the book the school issued her, I thought it was as helpful as a spoon for slicing. The instructions were plainly too confusing for any eleven year old to understand. It was like, “In dividing fractions in mixed form, we take the whole number and divide it by the other number from the dividend. The quotient should be equal to the product of the divisor’s numerators and the reciprocal of the dividend’s denominator… etc.” Ever get this feeling that its textbooks like these which make studying so goddamn fun? Me neither. No wonder, Filipino children are getting dumber and dumberer every year. It’s so ironic that the textbook which was supposed to make a kid smarter is making the same kid feel a hell of a lot dumber. And the blame goes to the scholars who write these books as testament to their scholarly scholarliness, instead of as tools to help un-scholars make it through a single day at school learning something new. I forgot the name of the author and the publisher but don’t worry, I’ll put it up next post so you guys can stay away from it, or burn it, whatever you think is fitting for garbage like that.
Those scholars are the reason why I don’t ever want to be successful. At least not in the way most people view how success should be. I just want to find something that I enjoy doing. You know that old saying that goes, find a job you enjoy doing and you’ll never work a day in your life? I’m really betting all my luck on that. Unfortunately, I had to cancel my job-finding expedition the next day because when I called Shenna in the morning, she was sick like I was. She has had a cold which was turning to be a really severe cough and she just couldn’t make it. That was a little bit disappointing, because I was really looking forward to it. I even printed my resume on scented paper and everything! (Not.) And to top it all off, yesterday, my mother and my sister went to Cainta for a visit and when they got home they brought with them some of the stuff I left there except one. You guessed it, they didn’t bring my Superman shirt with them.
Disappointments add flavor to life. Without them, life would be fast filled with people’s success stories, it’s going to be nauseating. So hooray for disappointments and keep on reading for more on My Life in Exile.
I have recently decided to exile myself to a remote village in Cavite for selfish reasons. I had a room in Cainta, Rizal but I locked it up and packed my bags so I can be here. I wanted to get away from all the influences around me in the city, I figured if I remove all these things I would know who I am better and know myself better I did. For example, I have been living with the knowledge that I can’t reach my toes while my knees were straightened out, apparently I can and I just wasted all these years depressed because I was the only boy in PE who couldn’t. But I’ve come to discover more important things than just that and I’m not going to talk about it. Because as soon as I knew myself better I bored me so I decided to think about my future instead.
I want to be a writer. A really good writing writer. I have an idea for a novel that I want to write and so far I have started working on it. Right now it’s still inside my mind but self help books (which I’m not going to plug because they’re not paying me) say that knowing what you want to do is step one of having a clear future. So I’m on step one. It took me several weeks to take that step but the old Milo slogan says great journeys begin from a single step, or was that Confucius? Anyway, it doesn’t matter because I took it and that’s that. You can expect plenty of updates about this on following posts.
When I left Cainta, I took most of my clothes with me and left the other bulky stuff like my dresser and my TV because it’s such a hassle to ride the bus with those things with you. Unfortunately, I also left my old clothes in there (the dirty ones which I never got around to washing) including my favorite Superman shirt. I don’t like Superman. I just like that shirt because it’s blue and that’s my favorite color. I found out it wasn’t with me two weeks after I got settled in my new house in Cavite and oh boy was I mad at myself. I was riding my bike one day through the fields and it just hit me like Invoker’s Chaos Meteor: “Where’s my Superman shirt?” I went back to Cainta but I met my old friends and we went out and they weren’t gracious enough to remind of it so when I got back to Cavite, I realized I left it again.
During the past few weeks I was writing something for the Graphic/Fiction awards because I needed an excuse to look busy so I wouldn’t have to do household chores. I wrote something two years ago about the old Filipino legend of the fireflies and I thought it was good enough to be submitted but it was around 8600 words and there was a 7000 word limit to the contest so I tried to cut it short which was a complete waste of a good three weeks. Then I wrote a new story about an anti-social fairy and a manic-depressive boy in Marikina but that was over the limit too so I scrapped the idea. Then I showed my friends something I wrote one disturbing afternoon while I was listening to Coheed and Cambria’s song, Mother Superior, about a guy killing his best friend and they liked the homicidal story better than my other attempts so I ended up submitting that to the contest. The story was so R.L. Stine I’m not even anxious to win.
Then I made a new resumé for myself which was pretty embellished so I liked it. I’m planning to work at some coffee chain and I’m going to use that to get in.
Wish me luck!