Friday, November 26, 2004

Again, The Stupid Procrustean Bed

Pussyfooting. The damned letter won't write itself while you're doing inconsequential stuff, Dex. Meanwhile you can't sleep and the other stuff you need to do just piles up in front of you. Damn.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Oh, Joy. La Dee Da.

From a friend's blog. Took it twice and varied results within a reasonable range. Turns out I'm still the George Clooney wannabe.

You Are the Peacemaker

You are emotionally stable and willing to find common ground with others.
Your friends and family often look to you to be the mediator when there is conflict.
You are easy going and accepting. You take things as they come.
Avoding conflict at all costs, you're content when things are calm.

Friday, November 19, 2004


The Green Mile(s)

A few weeks ago, I swung by Los Banos with the double-goal of seeing my friends and fixing those dratted loose ends from my early collegiate life that still haunt to this day. Happily, I got to do both. I talked shop with some of my old friends-- too bad I couldn't round up all of them.

I don't go to Los Banos often anymore, as doing odd media-related jobs doesn't bring in the money it used to. I'm also paying for my Tai Chi training, so what used to go to my travel fund goes to Sifu Russel's gas, coffee and pie. It was a relief though, seeing miles of nearly unbroken green whizzing by at eighty kilometers an hour, from the inside of a Laguna-bound vehicle, and not have to pay for the voyage. (Thanks, Mom!)

I stopped by Nelrose Place, site of so much intrigue and one of my Los Banos retreats. Host Nel was considering enrolling in an aerobics course, or at least going swimming on a regular basis. Meantime, he'd be laying groundwork for let's just say... family-related economic affairs.

Nel fed me tofu for lunch-- great for the soul, lousy for the joints-- and let me proceed to the new registrar's office. Surprise, surprise-- they lost their much-villified inefficiency and produced for me a new copy of my old transcript on time! I fondled and caressed my reborn transcript like it was a beautiful woman I hadn't seen since our first date.

The Green Mind

Then I swung by the Anker's, where I met with Kervin and Gar-Gar. From there, we phoned Homer, and told him via text message to stop wanking off to his (currently downloading) porn.

Disclaimer: For the record, Homer does not delve in porn for a living. Otherwise we'd see him haunting the halls of the reconstructed Virra Mall. None of us knew what Homer might have been doing at the time we called him, but we like harping on Homer's somewhat undeserved rep as Hentai Lord, because we're such sick sons of our mothers. Happy birthday, Homer!

We played several mean rounds of Soul Calibur 2 at a nearby gaming place that reminded us eerily of --

Homer and Gar-Gar: "The set of Silent Hill 4. Creepy."
Kervin and Dex: "A tick-infested brothel in Cubao. Creepy."

Green Costume

Perhaps it's because we were all geeks marked by social troubles at one time or other in our brief lives that our Soul Calibur battle turned into a nearly all-female kumite. No shocker there. Even considering that Kervin is an imposing gay guy who likes beary men.

What surprised was the sheer proficiency and brilliance that Gar-Gar displayed while playing Soul Calibur newcomer Talim. He paced his games according to the skill levels of his opponents. The fights were interesting until Gar-Gar knocked us out of the ring or poked and stabbed us senseless. And we were such masochists...

I was no slouch with Seung Mi-Na, even after all the time I didn't play her (owing to the fact that I don't own a PS2) but I was always beaten soundly. It was a relief to hand the controller to the next waiting player, since I didn't have the stomach to see my favorite CG Korean lass get slammed into walls, raked by multi-barbed whips or pummeled by visiting Tekken characters. But it was joy when Mi-Na kicked ass (as she sometimes did it literally). Too bad she didn't have her green costume-- the one that showed off her legs and featured her short hair-- for this iteration of Soul Calibur.

I ended my brief preoccupation with "green" after practicing Tai Chi with Homer. Even now, he is still the better practitioner, having a better grasp of the forms-- but I may have the dubious distinction of being gradually versed in an older iteration of the style we were practicing. He is a joy to watch when he practices his Tai Chi sword forms and I never miss a chance to pester him for an exhibition. We had dinner (Homer's birthday gift, on me), talked more shop and decided to call it an evening. I hope to be able to practice with him again the next time I'm in Laguna, with more forms added to my repertiore.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Contrary to my smiling countenance and my easygoing banter, my life is not "okay." There is more that can be done to "improve" it, make it more "productive," more "profitable." Sadly, the solutions to my problems-- while within my power to carry out via the two C's, commitment and compliance-- are never within my power to forsee. Others are always more than qualified to diagnose what's wrong with my life and formulate solutions because they've lived longer and are earning more in a week than I ever will in two years of honest work in the fields I know.

That's the conventional thinking in the Quezon City farmhouse. That is also part of the thinking that informs Honey's life choices.

To be fair, I haven't been very open about where my life has been leading; what my plans are (if I have any). It still annoys me, the often abused question-- "Where do you see yourself in five years?"

* * *

It galls that my achievements are often overlooked in the mad, if belated, rush to develop a Dexter Lira who can take on the world and win. (My "achievements" are of the modest kind: there are literally kids out there running their own successful businesses, mounting their own assaults on high fashion and the status quo, et cetera, ad nauseam. ) It galls more that I never wanted to be rushed to begin with.

When I was young, I was creature of boundless impatience-- there were whole worlds to see and discover. (Shine, young man, shine!!!) After years of being slapped down, bullied and walked on, I ended up asking myself "What's the point?"

Artists become great only after they've died. Scientists are generally vindicated long after they've been crucified by people afraid of changing their worldview. Writers (here) are never really respected, only reduced to making speeches for people they don't respect. And intellectuals exist only to provide amusing brain teasers for the people who don't have time to think. This blogger can't even rant without attracting derision.

You can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

* * *

It galls that for very life well-lived there are thousands of others so senselessly wasted. Well, one is only a loser so long as one loses. And one winning or losing streak does not a life define.

I am, after all, not dead. Yet.