Wednesday, February 24, 2010

the tides, part 10

Note : The following is a continuation to a story this author started writing last year. While he believes in the idea of intertextuality, he is also a firm believer of the concept of intellectual property, and will invoke his rights under the Copyright Law to the full extent, should his story be subjected to acts of plagiarism.

With nothing but the sun’s slow descent from the zenith to keep Theo company that afternoon, he watched with growing interest the blur of activities taking place near his perch, by the jagged rocks along the beach. It had already been more than an hour, when, from the six village men that had appeared by the curve, setting down the life-sized statue of the Blessed Virgin on the sands which was followed closely by this year’s hermana mayor—a woman with greying hair and a loud mouth— the spot had become a veritable hub of religious activity, this side of the island. Little girls clad in white, carrying baskets of red and white petals, formed a neat little line beside the hermana, who’s now caught in the heat of an argument, driving her point at the reverend with clenched fists as to why the cantores should go ahead of the altar boys the minute the procession starts. Filling the air with voices badly in need of fine-tuning, are the cantores themselves, practicing the hymns that will accompany the procession to the small chapel just a little way after the bend, on the island’s other side.

Theo watched all of these with the curiosity of an outsider; amazed at how even though the event badly needed the expertise of a professional events organizer from a city-dweller’s viewpoint, the whole affair still managed to retain an air of wonder and mysticism. He only had to look at the faces of those in attendance to see—fishermen’s wives with their kids and dogs in tow; all wide-eyed with excitement. Even the men of the village were present—standing by their boats adorned with triangular pieces of paper especially made for the occasion—in rapt attention as the hermana issued her final instruction : to haul the statue of the Blessed Virgin over to one of the boats. And, finally, sealing an hour’s worth of preparation, the loud clanging of hand bells from two altar boys going around the crowd amidst the persistent yapping of dogs.

A hand tentatively brushed past his right shoulder. He looked to see Manang Linda smiling. Behind her, Manong Gerry is busy getting his candle lit by someone from the crowd. “We told you its gonna be a special one, didn’t we? It’s sad that Clem couldn’t be with us this year. He should have gotten a vacation too and came here with you. Come now, the procession’s about to start”.

Theo smiled the sanest one he could muster, and motioned for the couple to go ahead. He looked in the direction of the sea. In just a few minutes of losing himself to the preparations, its waters had turned golden in the light of the setting sun. Boats have become mere ashen wraiths plying its waters, swallowed by the magnificence of its glittering tides; and the songs, just as they were starting to get sung, instantaneously receded with each step, as the procession started to make its way to the chapel.

to be continued

Sunday, February 14, 2010

happy, reprised

my valentines day turned out to be ok afterall. and that is saying it with a lot of smiles. :) i'm just one big drama queen. told dee i wrote the preceding entry out of sheer frustration at the turn of events, but told him i left out the details [to keep the fans guessing, haha!]. he told me i better make up by telling here that "i punished him, and punished him good last night", but that is too much information already, if you get my drift. hehe.

dee, thank you so much, that were still us. for exercising constraint in times when i take centerstage. for seeing me in my good times and the bad, and still loving me anyway. and though you keep on telling me that i have many "fans", kaw lang ang nagmahal at nagmamahal sa akin ng ganito at ikaw lang ang mamahalin ko ng ganito.

now, to say it again, properly this time : happy valentines day dadee.


i know what we have is not perfect. but time and again whenever something upsets that delicate balance, we somehow always manage to meet halfway and do the necessary talking til we are both satisfied and the balance restored. what really irks me now is that this has to happen today. of all days, sheesh. and i thought i've so much to blog about, so many ideas and events in the past days that needed blogging--things that are sunny and bright--and when free time finally visits my doorstep, those will be the things i'm gonna write about. not this. fuck. happy valentines day.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

the tides, part 9

Note : The following is a continuation to a story this author started writing last year. While he believes in the idea of intertextuality, he is also a firm believer of the concept of intellectual property, and will invoke his rights under the Copyright Law to the full extent, should his story be subjected to acts of plagiarism

Why does it have to be this way, Theo? This boat, this trip—what else am i to endure just to reclaim your heart? I don’t deserve you walking out on me just like that. i don’t deserve all the hurt feelings you hurled at me—coz i have, and i am, hurting too; hurting still, as much as you are. You think you’re the only one who’s losing sleep over all of this? You think you’re the only one dying a little each day, when you realize you’re all alone, facing and greeting the wall good mornings upon waking up? God knows, i haven’t asked for this. It all happened so fast; i bet you didn’t see this one coming, too. It seems to me he just appeared out of nowhere just to mess up our perfect little world. I won’t claim complete innocence and say i didn’t fall for his charms, even for a bit. Yes, he is attractive; yes, he pulled me in right away with his devil-may-care attitude. But you have to believe me when i say i won’t exchange our years together for a mere wink, attitude or charm. All the pretty boys in the world could easily have those and flaunt them, but none of your tenderness that make you beautiful; none of your caring, none of those loving looks you throw at me from across our dinner table after our teasing bouts. Whatever you think you saw that afternoon, it’s not what you think it was, Theo. Come back to me, please. Come back..

The sudden surge of the shrieking instantly pulled Clem out of his stupor and into the present. The gulls have appeared, seemingly, out of nowhere—carried by the gentle tides that now began a tender, rythmic rocking of the boat. Laced with the noise of the gulls flying overhead came another sound, faint at first, then steadily gaining ground with his consciousness. He had heard this before; at a time when he was happiest—in this exact same place, about a year ago. Ave Maria. Ave Maria sung with passion by the faithful throng gathered at the beach. Closing his eyes, he could very well see hundreds of candles lit, thrust to the heavens—their combined light slowly gaining prominence against a darkening sky; he could very well feel that familiar hand taking its place beside his, the warmth of its palm and fingers locked with his, in one glorious moment just before the rain of red and white petals eclipsed his view of the Blessed Virgin; local children running barefoot in the sand, squeezing through the crowd to get a closer look of the spectacle; beaming, happy faces. The din of the song echoed loudly in his ears. He somehow knew that if the sound and these images stayed inside his head even for just a mere second longer, he’d lose his outward calm. He had to snap out of it, and fast. He willed his eyes to open. The boat is now inching its way towards the shore, gently carried by the tides and the memories of the place. Just a little ahead, towards the direction of the boat’s mast, he could see tiny dots of light slowly coming alive in the gathering dark.

Candle lights.

to be continued

image source :

Sunday, January 24, 2010

sirang plaka

Yesterday was “alone time” with mother again. My sister, brother-in-law, and the kids went to Pampanga for a quick visit to that branch of the family there. My mom usually talks in circles. There’s no topic in our conversations that hasn’t been touched already, at one point or another, in past chit-chats. So its kinda boring, [but could you really tell that to your mom now, can you? hehehe] but it’s also kinda convenient for me, knowing what to say before she even finishes, coz I really know those topics like the back of my hand, so to speak.

Whenever we’re alone, she also makes it a point to bring out the topic of “when are you gonna bring a girl here, for me to meet?” or a variation would be “when are you gonna start looking for someone to marry, so I can still see my grandkids with you?”. That curb in the conversation is already part of the routine, but it never fails to surprise me, whenever she would go to that topic. I start to get uncomfortable and look in different parts of the table, or the refrigerator (‘coz it’s usually during lunch she brings this out), but not directly in the eyes because I might be tempted to spill the beans. I already wrote in the past that I’ve decided she will not know of my “little secret” for it will cause her great sadness. It’s already enough that one soul in the family knows—my beloved sister—and she too has been suffering in silence, I can tell. Well, I don’t know how I managed to evade her questions this time, but proof of successful evasion is that I’m still here, typing my thoughts away, hehehe.

That afternoon, I was at the bus going back to Manila. There was a young couple in front of me, a bit younger than I am, I think, and they have their baby travelling with them. Young daddy is cute, but I’m totally beside the point. Hehehe. What I’m trying to say is I think I can be a good father and provider to a kid. My kid. But question is, would I be fair to whoever she is who will bear my child? if only gay marriage is legal in the Philippines, Dee and I would get our own kid for ourselves, set-up a real family, and help each other out in raising our son into a God-fearing, good citizen of the country. Who knows, his lola might even love the idea of visits during the weekends, and playing with her apo.

haay. nangarap na naman ako. :)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Every time I go home to the province, it seems to me that Cj is getting taller and taller. Taller and wider, hehehe. takaw kasi nung batang yun. He’s face is also changing. Not the smooth, blemish-free face I so love to pinch back then; for I notice he already has pimples. Well, nagbibinata na nga siya. Which is but normal. Twelve years old na sya this april. It only saddens me that he will never experience all of these changes on the social level the same way we did. Autism has taken Cj away from us. took, and is still taking. May sariling mundo ang pamangkin ko. even at twelve, he still behaves like a pre-school child. all of us in the family have already adjusted to the special needs of Cj. We always think of his needs before seeing to our own. He’s the darling of the family. Even Geloy understands that. He’s become a very understanding kuya to Cj and I’m sure Ate is very proud of her first-born. Kita naman eh, that he loves his brother so much. Alam nyang dadalawa lang sila sa mundong ito, like me and his mom. and no one will care for each other but themselves. so I’ts safe to assume that he’ll take care of Cj when he’s old enough to do so, and we’re no longer around to look after them. My only fear is that, if old age or sickness gets us all to the ground before Cj, who will take care of him when that time comes? Surely, may mga kamag-anak naman, pero iba pa din kung immediate family. I dread to see that day come true.

Monday, January 11, 2010

a krissy year its been.. brace yourself for more servings

Sunday, its six in the evening and i’m on my way back to manila. Tomorrow will be the start of my second week at work, this new year. I still can’t believe a week has passed and no untoward office incident has happened—yet. Well, at least to me. i can’t say that exactly for my other officemates—it seems we’re all taking turns, incurring the ire of krissy. I just had my serving of krissy’s tender loving care last December, involving a word called “sarcasm”, the details of which i’d rather not discuss. You pretty much know her capability for emotional torture, based on previous postings, i trust those entries would pretty much make a solid characterization of this creature from hell. Its my first post this year, and much as i would have wanted to write more, i kind of busied myself with other things during the holidays, so forgive me if you’ve missed dear pie so sorely. Anyways, before leaving for the province on my last day of work last year, i managed to write something on a sheet of paper—as my office pc brokedown the last minute. I normally find it more convenient writing my thoughts as they come, preferring the use of MS Word more than dear plain paper. But since the hurt needs to be clearly documented, i elected to write my thoughts and feelings that time on paper, saving it for a time like this when i finally find time to visit the dreaming attic once more.

Here it is :

This is not good. I had several bouts of near-outbursts at Mc Donald’s and Jollibee in a span of two weeks; the causes, as trifle as the cashier unable to give my change for a transaction right away, or the crew making me wait for ten minutes for a single order of my favorite corned beef for breakfast. I didn’t ace my psych 101 back in college for nothing; i know there is a cause to all this. For a greater part of five years i’ve been under constant stress from one single person. Krissy the insatiable. You probably know her from the many entries i’ve posted, speaking of the unspeakable, so i won’t bother anymore, eking out a juicy character study for this megalomaniac of a being, except stressing the point that despite knowing the stressor and having researched on its (IT’S!) inherent qualities, i still couldn’t find a weak spot which i can exploit to my advantage. She has learned to guard all the gates and bolt all the doors; making her one solid impenetrable fort that just won’t budge. I have tried all the tricks in my stress-management bible. I went for massages, weekend tours, or quiet time at the province, all for nothing. The last two events i described earlier are cries for help. The inner, gentler me is screaming, kicking, wanting to be finally rid of all this—just him out in golden streams of light, in an endless field of green and rainbow-colored flowers; finally breathing free from that all-consuming darkness that plagued and continues to plague him for five years now. Somebody out there, help me. God help me.

The outbursts, well, they’re contained, for now. the psyche work, i’ve dee to acknowledge for. He did a wonderful job, text-counselling me, December of last year, hehehe. He’s in Australia right now, training for bigger things, for when he finally gets back here a month from now. i miss him terribly. One month is kinda long, but when i think of the years behind us, its pretty tolerable. Well, tomorrow’s another day of taking chances with krissy, i just hope i make the right steps that will help me cross the seven o’clock pm gridline.