Sunday, January 30, 2011

the last nightmare

the memory of it is quickly fading, blame the efficient process of my over-protective consciousness. the emotions caused by it, however, remains. i feel bothered; irritated; and to a certain degree, angry. not really the emotions one would feel when you wake up from a nightmare.

i just had a nightmare not too long ago, one that i can still remember bits and pieces of, that it. strange about this particular unpleasant dream was, all i could remember about was the argument i was having with Irog. i remember tempers flaring, his and mine, and how it was strong enough to jolt me to wake up, fully lucid, despite how late it was already that i went to sleep the night before. i remember looking up into the ceiling, trying to control my breathing, my heart racing from rage. my head started to spin as i felt utterly bothered that i could be that mad, in a dream, against the person who has been giving me so much love this past 3 months. what bothered me even more was that, despite the efforts in dismissing the nightmare, my consciousness was not that willing to let go of it yet. there was nothing aberrant, nothing strange, nothing off about it. it felt almost like deja vu, or even a forgotten memory. processing it kept me awake long enough that when i finally fell asleep, my dream afterward was me having a long, wordy discussion with, i would presume myself since i dont recall any other character being there. it was like a british talk show, only i was walking around in this dark room, ruminating on my thoughts, fellowshipping with some other presence. it wasnt as charged as the nightmare and i remember i was calmer, more objective, even more serious. that dream ended finally, i believe, when my subconsciousness had it's vent. i woke up later feeling better, but still a tinge bothered and slightly irritated for what had happened....

all because, i honestly believe, i went to sleep close to BURSTING from my shabu-shabu dinner at a good friend's home. BEHOLD!!!!! our spread! none stop flow of every assortment of meatball, veggies and paper-thin slices of beef and pork, simmering in a hotpot, filled with a broth painstakingly made from pork bones, cooking over a coal stove for 3 long hours.... extracting its flavors and aromas. then, after you draw the cooked morsels from the soup, you dunk it into an intoxicating sauce made from garlic, egg, satay, soy sauce and almond butter before they inevitably end up in a welcoming mouth. o the joy and oh, the nightmares this feast of gluttony will bring, INDEED!

Friday, January 21, 2011

last night in the car

the realization dawned on me as you ran your fingers, rather awkwardly, through my hair. i have to admit, i initially found it rather strange since it felt like you were petting an animal more than stroking the head of your lover. you continued, unmindful of my growing reaction. it was a discomforting feeling, how your fingers seemingly struggled through my strands, managing their way with some friction through my waxed hair. you combed them with your fingers, pulling them down, flattening them towards you, towards where you sat, as if raking my mind. i eventually blurted out, "thank goodness you're not my stylist!", words of which halted your stroking as now, you pondered on what it was that i meant. it was a joke that fell flat on its own. it feel flat the moment i said it, as, now that i think of it, all jokes that don't begin as jokes always do. my feelings of discomfort, my ideas of perfection, this picture in my head and how the moment that we were having did not fit in it was the cause... because, it was a picture only i alone drew. a picture i drew for myself, without you. a picture only i saw from mine eyes, from my vantage point and mine alone. a picture whose sole focus was how perfect the world was if i had things done... my way.

a world, i realized, you had no part in.

hence, your fingers felt awkward as you ran them through my hair. your petting felt like you were stroking an animal, more than your lover. you struggled. you were not gentle. you felt unrefined, and thus, did not conform to perfection.

but there lies the great error, and here also began the wondrous mercy.

i saw you again. i saw you again in your purity of intention. how your every action stems from love and love alone. how you step out and go out of your way to express your love, and how i have forgotten that this was one of the reasons why i fell in love with you. your beauty, your uniqueness does not stem out of outward polish, nor of great poise, nor of impeccable demeanor. your beauty comes out of your fragility, your innocence, your simplicity. you are like fresh dew after a harrowing night, like a cool breeze to break the heat.

we speak a different language, you and i. while i grew, accustomed to a world obsessed with outward appearances and control, you however speak a language far more relaxed and sincere, and how i now look forward to hearing you, and if you would be patient enough, learn how to speak your language as well.

all of this, i realized, just because you messed up my hair.

i love you.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

happy me (pardon the sarcasm)

it must be that time again when, maybe exacerbated by a day's worth of fatigue, that my serotonin levels drop to a week's low, leaving me again in state of, though despair is too strong of a word, well, maybe just persistent gloom. breathing is unexciting, food becomes bland, and things that often stimulate me now find themselves struggle to even make me take notice. though i am writing about it, i am not keen to agree that i am wallowing. just merely acknowledging it, and stating a fact. i have learned that i do have moments like this, and no, it will not be the death of me, nor would it lead me to ponder on the liberating feeling of how having a blade slice through my pulse points finally rid me of these very tiresome emotional oscillations. thankfully so, more than my penchant for drama, i have a stubborn will and, a irrational sense of vanity since, suicide is such an ugly way to die. so messy. then again, there's the pill. but then again... how unoriginal.

i am not typing feverishly on my slowly draining laptop, watching tweets pop up on my screen, reminding me of how other people's lives carry on, unmindful of mine. i used to have this notion that i was the center of the world, that i was the unique consciousness, that apart from me, nothing else exists, and when i expire, everything disappears with me. it was an interesting theory i have to say. more than a extreme case of egomania, it was more of me playing with the perception of reality. what if, i wondered back then, if i, like truman in the truman show, was the star and the entire world's activities were orchestrated around me. of course, this idea is simply too preposterous, now that i think of it, but i do miss that part of me, that part who conjured up this stupid notion in the first place. i miss him. his crazy ways. his out-of-the-box ideas, and his almost limitless curiosity of the world. it was an insatiable appetite for knowing and seeking. i dont see him so often anymore. i guess, when you reach a point in you life wherein you are content with knowing everything, even if you really know nothing, then you unknowingly begin to die.

this is my type of suicide.

i will sleep this off. tomorrow, will be another day.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

tinapa fried rice

it was last night's dinner's fault. it really was.

mom was wondering who brought the tinapa since it seemed no one could recall who it was from. it wasn't the usual smoked bangus that we often would have. this fish wasn't as salty, however, what it lacked in taste, it made up in flavor. it smelled utterly divine. the smokey aroma was neither too weak, nor too pungent (the latter is often the case with bangus), and the fish, the outer crust was toasted golden while the meat inside flaked to touch. the skin was a crispy amber and the fat... holy. it no longer needs to be said, that fish disappeared in almost an instant as even my dad, who often dismisses eating anything filipino, could not resist. i think he had the most actually.

i was in my usual lazy-eating mode and was picking on what was left of the fish, having my fill even with the burnt, caramelized skin when my mom asked what i wanted to have for my lunch tomorrow. ever since working for my uncle, i always brought lunch to work and the only instruction to them was lunch was always veggies. so for the past two years, that was all i ate. however, while i was licking off the wondrous tinapa juices off my oily fingers, i found myself say... i will make tinapa fried rice tomorrow! mom didn't immediately understand what i said, so i repeated myself. I WILL HAVE TINAPA FRIED RICE TOMORROW.... and I WILL COOK IT MYSELF :)

i immediately went to the fridge to rummage for ingredients. to my dismay, all we had was garlic and onions. not enough for the recipe slowly forming in my brain. it was ok, i thought. one day to prepare was not too long of a wait. a grin slowly formed on my face. it was dubai all over again, this gleeful feeling i was having when i KNEW what i was going to cook was going to be good. i listed down the ingredients to buy and gave it to our help. by this time tomorrow, my tinapa fried rice will be born....

(the following night... which is, just a few hours ago)

so i finally made my tinapa fried rice... well, most of it. i only got to prepare the first part since "plating" will come tomorrow in preparation for lunch. i first had the tinapa re-fried. since it wasn't really salty enough, i had to salt it a bit more just to help the flavors give taste to the oil. after frying the fish, i drained a bit of the oil and added in the garlic and the onions. i love the smell of frying garlic. so aromatic. as the garlic slowly turned golden and the onions, translucent, in goes the brown rice. i decided to use brown rice for the rustic texture and flavor it has, almost like grilled corn. i then started to stir the rice frantically since my wok was in high heat. i wanted to evaporate as much moisture as i could so that the tinapa-flavored oil would be able to coat all the grains evenly. as the rice slowly toasted and the GLORIOUS smell of the tinapa oil fill the kitchen, in goes the flaked tinapa meat. little by little, i added the meat in, just so they dont get all mashed up as i mixed the rice. salt, pepper and finally, the burnt bangus skin. i continued to stir the rice at high heat, flipping it from the bottom to keep in from burning, and fluffing it to further help in its drying. the popping sounds were my cue that my rice was now beautifully toasted. the meat was also now crispy. the fish fat had melted into the rice and now gave it the most divine taste.

tomorrow, i will plate it with salted egg, diced tomatoes and scallions.... drizzled with chili vinegar from RL Lapids chicharon.....

i think i am going to die...... smiling :D

Monday, January 17, 2011

i'm in love

i have a secret to tell.... i'm in love... and her name is design. i'm so in love with her, it kills me that i cannot honor her with beautiful creations. it seem everything i churn out lately is a pile of crap. yes, crap, and what eats me even more is that i charge people of crappy work, hoping that they wont realize how that they actually are paying for crappy work.

nothing is more frustrating. i dont really consider myself as an artist, but my approach to design is like that of a scientist. probably why i dont feel so attached to my work as much, as long as it serves a purpose and it's logical. design for me serves a function that is more than just something pretty. maybe this would explain why architecture appeals to me, since structure is based on physical laws unlike interior design wherein most is really reliant on subjective taste. ive been practicing for years now, and despite how i LOVE full, maximalist, classical, eclectic, sensual interiors, whenever i design, all, and i do mean ALL my works are minimalist, bordering in brutalist, simple and bare. i don't understand why, to be honest. all i can say is blank is beautiful. sparse is spectacular, and empty is em-pressive (nye!)

either way, design is love, and this intoxication is driving me crazy!!!!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

musings of a flatlining brain

ian wright said it best, that the curious would always have stories to tell. i was curious once, very curious indeed, and true enough, i had something to say about almost everything. that, however, was before.

i am rather afraid to say it, but nothing seems to excite me anymore these days. nothing enticing, nothing stimulating. everything, it feels, is lost in a state of utter blah. its almost as if i took a rather communist view point onto everything, where everything is equally interesting and thus, nothing anymore is.

maybe i've gotten too used to my surroundings, maybe ive seen everything that is there to see. maybe ive been bombarded by so much already that i'm numbed to the bone. maybe i'm just turning into a really, really boring guy.

my brain feels like mush right now, a product of fatigue, both physical and mental, and maybe lack of sleep as well. constructing sentences is become more laborious, more so having full intelligent conversations. speaking of full conversations, my beloved and i were sharing a moment over cups of coffee, as well as decadent portions of glorious cake (i just love cake). i love moments like this, where we are lost in each other's attention, deeply focused on each others voices, and just bonding.

on other less interesting notes, i have now a stupid reason as to explain my recent episodes of bitchiness... i'm now a leo, and no longer a virgo. funny no? explains a bit why im short fused and a bit more vocal than normal. can't say im not adjusting to this sudden bursts of bluntness, but to be quite honest, i don't mind it at all. maybe learning to be more direct is the lesson to learn this 2011. it certainly would help me save on time.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

the puzzle

dahil maraming lumpo sa mundo, at maraming tingin sa mga nakakapaglakad ng matuwid-tiwid, saklay. di lang nila taimtim na pinapansin na ang matuwid-tuwid ay di pa ring ganap na tuwid, at ang mga inaakala nilang mga saklay ay umiika-ika rin.

i've been slowly putting in the pieces, parts taken from different sources, from the looks of people to the energies they emit to my own personal experiences. the picture is not yet full, and i don't think it will ever, but that doesn't mean it doesn't tell me a story, and what a story it is.

i'm building a multifaceted puzzle, bound together by people whose paths seemed to have intertwined in an interesting web. you strummed them all, it seems. some lightly, the vibrations having quickly dissipated. some harder, to the point that their strings fail and they fall. it is highly interesting to see how all these people's stories interlocked because of you. it almost feels as if you created them, their stories sprung out from the genius of your great handiwork... or maybe, their hopes and their dreams and their wishes were the ones that created you, their underlying need for acceptance and guidance fueled you and your identity.

the gaps will never be filled. there really is no point for it, but a pattern emerges still. wise and gifted as some would say that you are (and i don't see any reason why i should not agree with the truth), i cannot help but feel that you will never be someone i will aspire to become. maybe this would explain why the gaps exists, why the picture is never complete, why the puzzle will always remain unfinished. makes me now wonder why i hold on to putting things together still.

Friday, January 7, 2011

barefoot running

i first caught wind of barefoot running a little over two years ago from my cousin. she used to run marathons as well and commented how some runners, due to monetary reasons run barefoot. though it was rather a saddening thought for her, i however found the idea quite fascinating really, especially since, living in ghettosville, seeing people run around barefoot is not that uncommon.

i chanced upon my first barefoot runner when i ran my first marathon. i distinctly recall taking a second glance at what i saw, since, you really just have to! he was a middle-aged man running a 10K. i was trailing behind him, running the 5K distance and saw from afar, a pair of surprisingly pale and clean soles. i have to admit, i was taken aback with what i saw at first. then i recalled what my cousin said and poverty was the thought that stuck to me, never mind that his soles looked pristine and that he was running faster than the rest of the pack.

fast forward to last year. i had just finished running the Singapore Marathon and was at the airport waiting for my flight back home. while killing time, i usually loiter at the bookstore, hoping to find something to spend my remaining foreign currency on. i saw this Men's Health book and upon perusing its contents, decided that it was well worth the SG$19. inside was a regimen on anaerobic training, something that, at that time, i was interested in. there was however also an article about this french man named Erwan Le Corre, founder and chief proponent of MovNat. the premise of his practice was achieving a new level of fitness by changing one's lifestyle by going back to how we used to live before we became "modern". his minimalist approach went beyond simply just going back to basics, he went WAY back, coining the term "Paleo Man", or something to that effect. i have to admit, it sounded kinda crazy when you first read it, but again, living in ghettosville and near the pier where people cant really afford gym membership made me reconsider erwan's "insanity". where i live, people are lean and cut, some even buff. what they do? they work in the textile warehouses or are fruit vendors, or in the rice dealers. they haul, lift, sort, carry, throw, drag, all these produce and basically, get the best workout than any gym can provide.... exactly what erwan's training program entails.... minus the tree climbing and free diving courses, of course. o yeah, he also runs barefoot.

so.... we fast forward further to the more recent present. barefoot running seems to be growing popularity now in the local running community. by this time, i had been training for brief periods in my vibrams FF, my oddest pair of footware. i had been reading a lot about the benefits of barefoot running and how it actually strengthens your legs and feet, and even prolong your running career. now, i really can't say i plan to make running a career, but strengthening my legs, as well as preventing future injuries were, as barefoot running claim to achieve, were things i was eager to look in to. so far, besides the strange stares i would get when running around the block, to loud comments about how stupid i looked, i can say that barefoot running, so far, has been truthful to its promise. my legs do feel stronger, sans the blisters and post-running soreness, but that really is expected from a beginner. my ankle injury still bother me but i'm hoping in time, that too will go away.

i'm hoping to run my first full marathon barefoot, or at least in vibrams by the end of the year, either in singapore or next year in HK. i'm also hoping i could incorporate some of erwan's training regimen to my own, well, since gym is getting really old and boring now and that i want to look like these guys as well....

image taken from

jusko.... kung magbubuhat lang ako ng tela at sako ng bigas at maglalako ng prutas sa divisoria, then GOW!!! ahahahaha. erwan is the tallest, eric bana-looking chap in the back row. diba? PWEDE!!!! (pero masgusto ko yung nasa kanang dulo. nyahahaha!)

ehem... sorry. nalurkey lang ako. ONG LILINOMNOM kasi, and i'm fasting rin today... hehehehe

Thursday, January 6, 2011

bitchesa moment number one for 2011

i'm making my new year's resolutions as i go. besides making an effort to be more mindful of what i say, i will, however, also make an effort to say things now, because they have to be said... and here is one of those things...

mader mcvie pointed it out, and rather than comment on his post, i'd rather rant in mine... well, RANT is such a negative word.

"life is unfair." on the contrary "life is very much fair. those who can't seem to see that are just too self absorbed or myopic... because stupid is such a negative word." and i believe this to be an absolute truth. i have had my fair share of misfortunes come about me. so many that i believe that it had affected my general view of how my life rolls, in which case was down in a rather steep hill. that view however was back then, back when it was far easier, and even, shall i say, empowering to feel justified in my misery. how could life be so unfair, i thought, that i was stuck and others were not? that i was unhappy, while others were not.

mcvie said it aptly, it really boils down to choice. in this case, a choice of perspective, the entire "half-empty, half-full" cliche. that's one way of seeing it. here's another way, life is really fair. life is fair, as joy can be fleeting, so can sorrow. as misery can be deliberating, love and passion, empowering. light and night, darkness and day. intelligence and... well, that other negative word. see, balanced and fair.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

in brief

the drive to makati was surprising short that evening. i had expected the usual rush hour traffic to greet me on certain parts of my route, but it seemed that the usual hoard of commuters and crazy drivers were still on their holiday hiatus. good for me, i thought. i would reach my destination with enough time to spare to actually, decompress.

bruno's at greenbelt was not as full at the one in rockwell. kuya said that people often get their haircut during the first days of the year, since, its supposed to bring them luck... or something to that effect. i wasn't really paying that much attention. i asked the reception for my favorite barber, but, just my luck, he had left for home already. i was kind of disappointed since, i have to admit, i have had the stupidest crush on my barber from the first time he cut my hair. i can't really say what was it about him that makes him so... UGH! :) all i CAN say is, i would always have a stupid smile on my face every time i rise from his chair, my hair, freshly cropped. in this occasion however, i was led to a different chair, to a different barber. a part of me was half-guarded, my loyalty in check for my one-true-barber.... that was, until i saw who was going to cut my hair. i had already noticed him from the mirror as i was at the door. he stood out primarily since, he was tall, lean, and fair. interesting, i thought to myself. then the reception called for him to attend to me. surprise, surprise, the fates were at their teasing games again.

up close, there was nothing distinctly remarkable about this new barber, besides the ones i had already mentioned... that was until he was already cutting the top of my head and had casually pushed my head down so that he could have a better view. let me just say... I HAD A GOOD VIEW TOO. as i was staring right at HIM, i could not help but remark on how strangely disproportionate IT was compared to the rest of his lean built. my goodness, does he keep a SOCK in there? i tried to find something else to focus my attention to, however, with his proximity to face, there was nothing much else to me to see. i felt a nervous lump begin to build inside my throat, made worse as he pushed my head lower still. the phrase "so near, yet so far" breezed through my head for a split second, but of course, i had to dismiss the thought IMMEDIATELY. my situation and my lycra polyblend shorts could spell a rather embarrassing episode if things were to continue this way. thankfully so, he finally was satisfied cropping the top of my head and i was able to raise gaze off his member, FRANTICALLY now looking for the ugliest thing i could find.

he ended my haircut with a scalp massage, and a VERY good one, i have to say. he took the barber's cape off me and patted my back in thanks. i looked at him briefly, smiled, and quickly walked to reception to pay, head bowed down and mindful not to stare at ANYTHING. as i exited, i caught sight of him smiling. either i looked obviously embarrassed for some reason, or he knew exactly what he was doing... and then some!!!!

Monday, January 3, 2011

overcoming inertia, again

despite coming home past midnight last night from what i hope would be THE LAST GLUTTONOUS SUPPER in honor of the holidays, i still chose to wake up at 530am, the usual time i would wake up on a workday since, well, it was a work day. i could have actually had about an hours worth more of sleep but i opted not to. instead, i hauled myself, more like rolled actually, off my delightful bed and threw myself into my gym attire and headed out to my neighborhood gym.

walking around the delightfully safe streets of tondo (notice the underlying hint of sarcasm, in case you haven't noticed), long before the first pot-bellied cop has stirred from his (probably) mistress's mattress, was certainly not the most ideal way to start the first work week for the year, but, i reckoned, surely even the criminals are too suffering from the laziness that many people were feeling at that moment. besides, i thought, nothing much there to take from me except for my stinky shoes and my torn towel. needless to say, today was just any other day... so i was trying my best to be convinced. live today like it was any other day and hopefully, the hurtful realization that i would have to go to work a few hours from now wouldn't make me THAT miserable.

gym was as cruel as i had expected it to be. the holidays had wrecked havoc of months of good progress and i now find myself struggling once more, as if i hadn't done any work at all, this the harsh realities of what is the product of poor genes and a very slow metabolism. defeated as i was, however, i did not rest too long in my discouragement. it was a new day, and new opportunities were at hand.  there were only three of us who were insane enough to go to the gym the first thing in the morning. even the sun, it seemed, thought that it was crazy to rise that early, especially on such an overcast and chilly day. none of the usual gym folk were there. no happy mommy voices cackling about the latest gossip, nor the usual arrogant banters of the bulky gym rats (who, despite their aggressive regimens, don't seem to look like they're loosing their guts). just me, and two other sorry looking blokes, slaving away on machines and weights, which, from how they felt, didn't really like the fact that we disturbed them as well from their slumber.

i huffed. i puffed, and strained my poor, heavy body. stagnated blood eventually moved. plugged sweat glands finally got a flowing. i was a reawakened machine... now, if only i could keep myself going.

Saturday, January 1, 2011


ah, a fresh new year, hoping that it would be a fresh new start as well.

seeming like it's my new year tradition already, first thing i do as i get up from bed, besides evacuate my full bladder, pick my nose... to check the damage of what the past night's fumes had probably done to my slowly smothered lungs. often, i expect the darkest of hues once my finger emerges from their exploration. today however, my... MALINIS. this unexpected discovery prompted me to think back and take notice as well, my, i slept way past midnight last night and don't recall suffering from tinnitus from all the incessant noise. could it be true??? i guess it is... this year was the quietest new year's day celebration yet.

we had our annual new year's eve dinner last night at my lola's. we were only 13 that evening, the smallest number of my family gathering together. we all fit in just 1 dining table when often, the grandchildren would overflow to kiddie tables. it was half sad since we were quieter this year, less a few voices, less a few personalities, less a few stories, but still, we try to compensate. this year, my lola asked everyone to say grace over the food. this is the second time that she has done so, and i must confess, there is something intimately beautiful hearing the personal prayers of relatives. often, it would just be my lola and one of my uncles who would pray, since, i guess they have the strongest spirits in my family. but this time, upon hearing everyone pray (even my dad), i could not help but feel moved and feel blessed that i am part of this family. small is though my power, i know its not a matter of what i have now, but by God's mercy, what i should aspire to become and gain. hearing the voices of my uncles, my cousins, my parents, even myself, saying grace and being thankful, was a great bonding experience. it tied us all together as a family again, and i could not help but smile. i told my brother after that i loved the fact that i heard dad pray. he agreed, tho he wished dad would do it more often. i have faith that in time, he will.