Coming for notebooks

A time for coming, you see. I don’t know what kind of convolution occurred at my neighbor’s brain, but they started acting like zombies, started walking like zombies, started talking like zombies.

Yesterday, they picked up the phone in the telephone booth, and started talking about really strange things. Actually, I was not sure if they were really talking about something at all, I was not even sure they were really talking:

“Hoophoop. UUUU SASASASASASA uuuuuuuuu bubububu uuuu shshsh uussh uussh uussh. Gagagagag uuuuu gagagaga sasasasasa.”

That, in nerve-wracking repetition. About six minutes of repetition, six minutes of that strangeness.

And then, as I kept walking, along the dead alleys, the poor straits of Magsaysay, I saw this man with no shirt on, an ukay-bought Lee pants, greasy hands and yellow teeth. He was awkwardly looking at me, I don’t know why. He must have been out of his mind. But I was wrong.

“You look strange Miss.” He said to me, despite two meters of separation and his teeth.

“From what place are you? I haven’t seen someone like you for a while now.”

Dementia or stupidity? Neither. I think he was wondering about my blue hair band, my “Philippines is for Filipinos’ shirt” and my journal notebook.

“What is that notebook for?”

Notebooks, keepers of memories, thoughts, reflections, opinions, grievances.

  1. I hate Math 1 and refuse to read Wellek and Warren.
  2. July 19 could be just another flop, you know, one-time big-time, spooky walk-out day. People should walk-out because they believe, not because it sounds cool for a UPian.
  3. My mom has not answered my calls, I guess it’s the profusion of rain and the betrayal of signals.
  4. Why an armed revolution?
  5. It’s a boring 7am class
  6. Because we can’t go on, we must not go on with impoverished minds, empty pockets, empty stomachs, empty souls. And private things only underscores the economic differences.
  7. Falcon is not so poetic.
  8. Lousy beatles, Bieber’s green

Love Oprah and Charlie Sheen

Everything today is america

So, asa Pilipinas ka pa ba?


I remember my classmate during high school. He had nice pens, a nice bag, an expensive highlighter, but no notebook. Even just one notebook. I envy him, US-made pen, US-made highlighter, US-made bag. But his having no notebook, and me, cheating on my teacher’s lame lecture, scribbling about Rizal’s possible homosexuality, Bush’s real terrorism, my mother’s books about Marxism, I feel like I am the more enviable. Notebooks are a space of creations for me, spacing against the currencies, spacing against the voices that are heard.

And my unenviable US-made classmate, he is fond of his little corner in the classroom, that corner nearest to the United Nations chart in the classroom.


“Ahm this notebook? This is for my memories, my thoughts, my reflections, my opinions, my grievances.”

“Oh I see. I don’t need that, I don’t have them, thoughts, reflections, opinions, grievances. I have TV Patrol and Mike Enriquez and Manila Bulletin doing that for me.”

“Ok. I really need to get going now, I need to buy some more notebooks. Nice to hear from you.”


And I gave a frown to the wind, and muttered tempered repulse with it, TV Patrol, Mike Enriquez, Manila Bulletin, I hope time will come when they don’t operate through filters, and they will be more honest. And so I return to my proud walk, brown america’s cold version is still asleep, but zombies are slowly emerging from a red death.





Fragments of Summer

March 18

I thought last days of semesters, I meant the end of exams and all, are supposed to be melodramatic. Supposed friends silently weep the departure of one another. Vacation is supposed to start. How charming is that, how our suppositions betray us, and what we really aspire for, and look forward to. Yes, commas make reading a little bit more, complicated, and yes, fun.

April 03

I had this blogging hysteria, teasing me to carve a world of my own language in the vastness of the Internet. The initial intention squares with the cliché of purging through writing, but I somewhat know subconsciously that I harbor this angst-ridden dream of creating something honest in the internet. I have been to how-to sites, Wikipedia and Formspring, and they reek with falsities and deceptions, subtly, also propaganda.

April 16

The initial plan was a week in Cebu. Romanticizing resulted to the best days of my life, at least so far. No, there was no Sinulog and posh travels. There were only cute nipa huts, inihaw na bangus, crunchy otap and tasty danggit, some middle-class wine and good Bisaya music. And yes, I find it interesting as well, how my Visayan father wrenches his head to turn Bisaya to Tagalog, the unabashedly folkloric to the short-range civilized. Again, how language screws us all.

April 28

My sister has this really intimidating course, but well, only at first take, which disturbs me while seeing what it is doing to her. The seeming complexity of the name, “Medical Technology” does not commensurate with the heaps of paper she has to read almost every night, and the desserts she had to skip, and the movies she could have watched, flings she could have had. That is another hilarity, how we are impelled to move by mere designations, like how I should live as a BALL student, or as a UP student, how celebrities are supposed to behave for being such, how Noynoy should not do this or that because he’s the President. And can we look back at my terms? Impel is more haggard than compel; it is closer to coercion. And “mere” designations? I doubt it. I am no mere Kitty Maria.

May 07

I texted this friend from long ago, asking her how she’s doing. She said she’s doing great, beaming with cheerfulness I can almost hear as a heartfelt smile. I asked her what that greatness in her feeling and condition is. She came up with a four-page reply. This, again, I find interesting, how, despite a challenging virtuality, text messages imply connections between people. How length implies efforts (texting tires fingers), some commitment, some importance, and seriousness. We know how an “Ok lang” reply resonates with laziness, non-commitment, and boo, disinterest. Things done for their sake.

May 27

And how happy my younger sister and I have become after seeing our older sister’s rare jubilating mood after the Heat ousted the Bulls in the playoffs. NBA was not one of my interests, but I’m sweet enough to have my ate’s mood in them.

June 01

So I welcome myself back to the fray, the boons and banes of UP Baguio, the crevices of human tragedy, and how we resurrect every after small deaths. I never imagined to stay here, in this space I truly consider sacred, with flirtatious letters asking us to keep asking about ourselves and our world. Yet I am somewhere else too, so visit my blog at and we’ll get insane dealing with words and the worlds where they inhabit.


Saying the unsayable

There are seemingly unsayable terms, unsayable words, unsayable names; teasing designations that wound even the seemingly most impenetrable presence.

Whereas “puta,” ‘tanga: or “son of a bitch” could be unsayable for supposed angels, names that reverberate with and gush with pieces of sad memories are unsayable because they evoke that precisely, a sadness so deep one needs to swim in it before getting over it. Whereas “inscrutable” is too sacred to be told, “unsayable” here is too painful to be told. Where it takes everyday to say “Hi” or “Thank you,” perhaps it will require a torture to say the unsayable-name-that-reaps-sadness.

In the fake glimmer of summer, I forced myself to rub out from my vocabulary this person’s name who was never really like a meter apart. In the challenge of a monotonous May, I invited a nocturnal specter to force me to avoid mentioning and declaring a new, verbal taboo. That is like murder, although definitely of a different type. Killing someone with your mouth is like killing someone in your consciousness, forcibly excluding the person in the frame of things one can recognize, much more value. The words that come out of our mouth, being a product of a process which had an earlier stage in the mind, have this great significance. Like what I say is intertwined with my memory, my feelings, my knowledge, my desires, or what else, my consciousness. And banishing a name from the realm of what I can say, how is that? That is difficult, especially if you are trying to abandon a name which belongs to someone that is, shit, special.

But feelings and situations are not stable. And while feelings amplify, situations can be unfavorable that they disappoint the feelings.

And we usually end up in that, disappointments, frustrations, and those other words that are overflavored with glum. So I keep rehearsing in front of the mirror, doing away previously typical sentences where I speak of the unspeakable, say the unsayable. This looks like it will be of great hypocritical fun.