Thursday, August 17, 2006

The God in Me-a

My co-worker surprised me once again. She did the equivalent of reading my palm, and quite accurately too-- she asked me to draw a person and a tree and she told me stuff about myself. While I didn't appreciate her going into shrink mode-- I've had a sh!tload of people falling all over themselves to judge me and chart the course of my life-- I did appreciate the sudden epiphany I received. I was appropriately thankful.

There wasn't much that's changed in me since the time my wife left me. I'm reserving judgement about whether or not that's a good thing.

I'm thinking maybe the Universe is trying to tell me something with regard to the broken, needy thing that is my heart. Let you know what else I discover in the coming days.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

On Friends


My friend is still a sanctimonious jerk. But I love him and I'm not about to lose him because he has to be right all the time. Neither do I want to lose him because I dislike how cavalierly those who are right treat those who are wrong. His viewpoint is not the only valid one in the universe.

I am upset because he continually sees me as a basket case. If my peer group was Asia he'd be Taiwan and I'd be Bangladesh in his eyes.

I have to keep in mind that his universe revolves around him as mine does around me. He is my friend regardless of how we see each other.


We were lovers. Regardless of what people say or think or do, that is what we were. I just wish she would acknowledge that. Am I so loathesome that to say we were once joined at the hip is an embarrassment? an affront to nature?

I am beyond asking her to love me back now, even if that is my dearest wish. Her actions have spoken volumes about who she cares for, who she chooses for a mate, what she seeks in a man (obviously not me).

I only want two things now-- that she speak to me again; and that she acknowledge even if only to herself that we were lovers once. I have slandered myself enough; I've no desire to have others tarnish who I am pereceived to be.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

It's All About Me

I've been asked, at the Quezon City residence, why I'm so selfish. It's only dawned on me a few days ago why this is so. It's 'cause I'm pretty selfless everywhere else. At the end of the day or the bleeding work week I just want to go someplace where all I'll do is eat and sleep and be oblivious to everyone else's pain.

I guess this also answers other people's questions regarding why I'm so "needy."

Anyway, it's a sh!tty situation, being too tired to spread warmth and cheer where it's needed most (the home) because you're expected by everyone else to be cheerful outside of it. I don't exist to be someone valued for just my skills--at least not in the home-- and certainly not when those skills can be easily learned by the people at home who need them.

Yes, no one really has the time to do all that learning, especially when the computer is involved. But then that means the people concerned will have no choice but to put up with me being a very reluctant, irritable and very condescending old sourpuss.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Nobody bothers to visit this page anyway, so:

I am no longer part of your clique, your subset. You won't miss me, not if your actions are anything to go by. It'll be as if I've never been. Damn bleeding shame. But maybe it'll be for the best.


Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Everybody Thinks You're Crazy (2)

I have to add this as a companion piece to the last post.

My friends cite their overwhelming concern for me as a motivation for their badgering me. Because they don't like seeing me "like this." They forget that there were only a few times when I was "like this." That maybe there's an overwhelming reason why I'm moping like an idiot.

I'm not always like this. And I'll come out of it when I'm damn good and ready to.

Everybody Thinks You're Crazy

They do think I'm crazy. My friends, gentle readers. It's not the first time and it certainly won't be the last. Normally I wouldn't mind. "Crazy" is usually a badge of pride. Means forward-thinking, off-center in a cool way. It's just that right now their definition of "crazy" is the kind of crazy that, if knocked up a couple of notches, gets people locked up and on medication for depression.

It's because they see me "suffering" and "miserable," hung up on a girl who-- for one reason or another-- will never return my affection. Dex has fallen and fallen hard and is therefore on his usual trainwreck ride to his special hell. He must therefore be saved from himself, barring having him committed, by means of friendly if exasperated and angry unsolicited advice. Really, it's the Angelica Wars all over again.

Quite a few of them forget that years ago they were also moon-eyed over an uncooperative someone or other. How hard was it to convince them that they had to just let the matter drop and move on like they want me to? It was like wringing blood from a stone, to listen to the accounts of others who tried vainly to dissuade them.

Okay, what's my point? My point is that people deal on different levels, in different ways. And most times, simply telling them what ought to be done hardens them to the idea of it. Some people learn their lessons the hard way. Often the people who are in these messes are so mired that they cannot simply disengage even if they wanted to. What they need is for their friends to be with them whatever happens.

They never got that one reason why the Angelica Wars lasted six whole years was that everyone I'd talked to was doing my thinking for me. Dex, do this. Dex, do that. I just needed time to process my own thoughts, to know that whatever my choices, I would still be able to return to the safe harbor of their regard.

I remember promising only that to two friends of mine playing a courtship tug-of-war. Guy loved girl. Girl didn't like the idea. Guy talked to me. Girl talked to me. I could not take sides (but I was secretly rooting for the guy). I only did three things--

1. I listened.
2. I wished for each of them the best, praying for each as he or she asked.
3. I told each of them I would still be a friend regardless of what happened.

Guy won girl.

So how can this same guy tell me to quit when he didn't? I could have told him the same thing years ago when the girl was giving him a tour of the special hell. No guarantee I'd get the same result of course, but I have to see it through on my own.

There are no words more foul to someone who's had to turn the other cheek on issues important to him when he finally decides he wants something bad enough to take a stand, than the words "move on." He knows why he may have to, but the point is he doesn't want to have to. Not until he's fully convinced himself that the effort is futile. Eventually if the effort is futile, he'll come to accept the need to walk away from a bad situation. But he has to come to it on his own terms or his decision will always feel tainted. He'll never know any peace.

Monday, May 01, 2006


I can barely remember happy.
I'm used to these trysts being
exercises in futility, excuses
to burn me at the stake
for the heresy of loving you.
Half the time you didn't even
show for these witch trials.
Nevertheless your perpetual crowd
would dunk my heart in water,
gleefully waiting for it to float
so they could shoot at it
with rumor and innuendo
to assure themselves
that all was right with the world.

I can barely remember happy.
Happy was long talks, long walks with you;
Happy was midnight taxi rides in your arms;
Happy was kissing your hand good night;
Happy was putting a blanket over you;
Happy was falling in love with you
When loving you didn't have a name.

Happy was half a year ago.

Now-- another tryst I'm not
so sure you'll come to.
Another witch trial with
all the motions mapped out;
Likely the same tired verdict.
If the charge is still heresy,
I'm pleading guilty to save you time.

But maybe this time it won't be bad,
won't end with a charred corpse,
won't end with a heart full of holes.
Maybe you'll actually get it--

that the world is really round;
and that I'm in love with you;
and that maybe,
just maybe (heresy!)
it's not such a bad thing.

Friday, April 28, 2006

I'm tired of hiding behind innuendo and comments on the sly. I am. But I'm stuck posting this stuff in nooks and crannies you're not likely to look at because of something or other that involves other people who should have absolutely jack to say about the way we run our lives.

Duday, I love you. And it hurts that we aren't talking.

Look: You spent the better part of two weeks trying to ditch me. And so for lack of anyone to talk to, thinking loving you is a lost cause, I decide to talk to the one person I haven't talked to in months-- our ex landlord, my oldest confidante and your ex-friend.

A few days later you suddenly want to talk to me--likely to chew my head off-- because I've up and told him seven words, through text: "Nel I am in love with Duday." But our timing stinks because you're headed to Nueva Vizcaya for a week and I'm headed to Cebu for two.

Now you don't want to speak to me at all.

You know I'd make the time for you-- I always have, even when it inconvenienced, even when it hurt. If I had the money and all of time at my disposal, I'd do a lot more if only so you'd smile. You know I'd walk through fire for you.

I'd always find a way to be near you because you make my heart sing. It isn't easy seeing you hugging everybody else when we used to hug a lot. It isn't easy being so close and having to restrain myself because you don't want me touching you. And like an idiot I keep coming back for more of the same. The contortions I had to go through-- to hide behind my glasses, to take the snide whisperings of people who shouldn't even have a say in what's between us, to stuff my feelings down my throat when what I wanted most was to shout them out on every mountaintop. To sing them to you.

Did you know, in the dead of night, whenever I'm alone, my blood still burns and my body still shakes because it remembers-- it rememebers!--what it was like to hold you? Don't you wonder why despite all the crap I've had to take from you, the club, Dacs, our well-meaning friends, why I still stay?

Simple math. I love you.

For the last time, it's not bleeding rebound. But it won't be much more if you shut me out.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Awfully Tired of Someday

Porn is not helping. Neither is booze.

Monday, March 20, 2006

The View from the Fourth Floor

Stopped by last night at the Heart Center to visit my mom. As I stumbled and felt my way around the building, I realized how maddeningly simple and convoluted a hospital built this way was like. Think of the view from right above the building. The Philippine Heart Center for Asia looks like a four leaf clover with a large, hollow, square center. Every few meters you had to turn and turn again. There were signs and markers aplenty, but you could still miss the room you wanted because you're so used to a building with four (not twenty-six) corners.

I'd only been here a few times. Twice on two art workshops--yes, I was a Fernando Sena* baby and so was my ex-- and two more times visiting my Mom.

Despite the decrepitude affecting infrastructure and technology in the Philippines, the place looked and (very importantly) smelled good. The last time I was there (my mom was also confined for something or other) there were signs of bad funding and shoddy work-- construction debris piled up in one or more of the least-visited corners of the Glorified-Red-Brick-Four-Leaf-Clover.

Wards and triage areas are usually not the best places to be stuck in, in a hospital. Even if they're in the Philippine Four-Leaf-Clover for Asia. The suites--I don't have a better term-- though, are another thing entirely. There was air-conditioning, ample privacy, a teevee and a decent fridge. There was table space. Clean, well-smelling bathrooms with color-coded trash cans. And cute nurses. They needed more windows, but the cute nurses and medical staff more than compensated for the lack of scenery. Besides, if one were ambulatory, one could easily walk to one of the corridors connecting the four-leaf-clover petals of the building, and take in a night view of Quezon City, or bask in the city's available sunlight. It's not so alive with commerce, but that's its chief appeal.

As I entertained thoughts of living in a room similar to the one my mom was confined in, I seriously contemplated getting real health insurance. Who knows? if my he(art) is what ails me, I may have to get confined here myself.

*Fernando B. Sena --painter, artist, teacher, father of Philippine Art Workshops.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006


I don't want to put up another blog. I've too many as it is. But the demands of a smaller electronic universe are keeping me from writing freely.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Puerile Comfort

My sister, being overly wary about walking short distances in our less-than-posh neighborhood, hired a cab to take her from Banawe Street to our own... a few measly blocks away. Cabbie decided that my little sis was likely an easy mark... a woman, alone and carrying a big piece of luggage. He tried to gyp her by insisting she pay a hundred bucks for the short journey after she'd entered the sedan and gotten herself strapped in. She said "No." Cabbie proceeded to turn off the fare meter on the sly to muddy the issue of just how much she was s'posed to pay, and to better insist on the price they did not agree on. No dice though, my sister noticed and informed him of the fact. The cab stops in front of my house and the cabbie still insists on being paid a hundred bucks.

My sister tells me about this lowlife as she enters the house sans bag, which cabbie was holding. My eyebrows violently come together. I'd just returned from a long training day, hands bruised and muscles aching. If someone was gonna mess with my sister, it'd be over my dead body. That's when I go out into the front yard scowling and slapping two sticks together so that the cracking sound is pretty much heard across the neighborhood hubbub. Cabbie promptly accepts my sister's proffered P50 and hands the maid her luggage.

It's not something I'm proud of, and part of me was afraid of a confrontation (I don't like hurting people and being hurt myself as a rule). But my little bit of posturing got the job done and I'm not about to argue over results.

Sometimes it's a good thing to be an ass.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Command Decisions

We need that damned streamer and the earliest we could get it was Monday. The art & signage people were recommending changes that, in my heart I agreed with. There's simply too much damned text, and yes the streamer should be bigger, if only slightly. When Mom wanted a flyer -- which I made for her-- she didn't say she wanted the design to be good enough for a streamer too.

Happy new year, all.