By now I don't think I have to reiterate that lunch is the only time I get myself some much needed reflection. Depends, really. I either write article outlines on the back of the receipt, or concentrate hard on whatever my earphones are playing me, or - and this happen more often than not - contemplate on the food I'm eating. Since I eat later than most, I end up getting hungrier, and perhaps, more appreciative.
Yesterday was just one of those days. It's usually quiet (and empty) by one in the afternoon, which is why I prefer eating at that time. I can just stare blankly into space and imitate sleep without closing my eyes. Also, it's summer - although it doesn't feel that way - and there aren't any students who will loiter around Pearl Drive. They're not exactly annoying, but I'm annoyed at them anyway, partly because I'm done with what they're doing, and partly because they all look like my friends in DLSU
- one looked like Raymond, another looked like Gaille, and I swear one of them looks like Misha.
Alas, I think UA&P
has summer classes.
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I'm safe until you read this.
Right, so there are the conversations. A lot of them. With a lot of people. Some more often than others. Depending on proximity, availability and accessibility, the chats would vary from random spewing of annoying buzzwords to surprisingly deep discussions about human nature. Well, that always equates to what I said I'll do, what actually happened, and what it all turned out to be. That one, I have yet to figure out. Or, we have to.
If there was a mistake, it was the attachment. Unnecessary. Definitely unnecessary. Considering that it was all based on that stupid belief that something should've happened in the past, given that I wasn't exactly a personality that lived under a rock, collecting notoreities as the terms passed. Or, you don't believe in logic, instead choosing whatever the dragons send our way.
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Summer rain, summer programming, and The Suite Life On Deck
I don't really watch it. I don't even know when it's on, although my tendency to remember things somewhat vaguely means I have some idea when it's on. I chanced upon it when my sister was lazily flicking through television channels, and conveniently stopped in the middle of the usual funny scene set in a cinema, or, in this case, a big projector screen on one of the decks of the SS Tipton.
Since I've seen the predecessor, I've known a few bits about this one. It's on a boat. It's got no Ashley Tisdale, but it gets a Debby Ryan. I know that because I remember encountering that 15-year-old (supposedly) for work. "Oh, so she's the girl who replaced Ashley," I went, and then forgot all about it.
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Finally, I have succumbed to writing about social networking.
True, I'm quite an intensive user. I maintain a Facebook profile
, while my Friendster profile
is left to go the way of the dead. There's also my Last.fm page
, although it's just me being a statistics dork. Obviously I have a Multiply site
that saw its heyday during my college years. And if you're referring to communities, or whatever closely resembles them, there's me on the forums, and then there's LiveJournal
, and then there's Twitter
So that's a bit too much for someone at my position now - I'm done with college, supposedly busy with work and other stuff, and more importantly, supposedly over this thing and interacting with people in a more concrete setting, rather than posting barely-understood phrases that actually mean "I want to pry into your life for a bit". Then again, I'm not the type of person who spends so much time there either. My blogging is a totally different issue - being a self-described writer, that's harder to extricate - but I don't exactly go there to be amused. Not the very least playing those games on Facebook
- I just don't see the point.
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Having lived in Cavite for most of my conscious life, I always had a fascination for SM Megamall
. Shallow, sure, but I was a kid then, and it was just a stretch of walkway after walkway, a bumch of escalators and elevators, and rows after rows of shops. And a skating rink, and a food court, and three exhibition halls, and twelve cinemas, and a major road piercing through it, and spiraling pathways for cars.
But what got my attention was the elevators. There were two on each building, and each was a bookend to the the open spaces that made the mall brighter than it should be during the day. Or, it was a novelty when I was just two. I liked the way it gave people the ability to see the whole five floors from one viewpoint. Or at least it felt amazing to me as a kid. I've always wanted to be in there just for the view, that big feeling that kids always wanted.
Of course, the family rarely went there. Christmas shopping almost always happened in Makati, with the more usual malling happening in the Las Piñas area, and when it got more accessible, in Alabang. And my fascination for that kilometer-long slab of concrete at Ortigas died down, but more because I already saw many other malls, and they're all pretty much the same. Getting an Ortigas-based job didn't even spike things up - it merely meant I'll find myself in that mall more often than I expected. A kilometer-long slab of concrete. I never get tired of walking.
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I don't exactly hate being optimistic, but I don't see myself being one. It's weird being the bringer of positive angles to those who need it the most, much like what I did to Valerie today
. It's weirder considering I myself need more of these positive angles than, probably, anybody else I know, after getting nothing with the risks and failing when nothing's been done. But, believe it or not, I've been giving myself that same dose of misplaced positivity - and I don't notice it most of the time.
For the past few weeks, the three have left for lunch together more frequently. It's become a daily habit - where have the packed lunches gone? - and it's forced me to delay my lunch until, at the earliest, one in the afternoon. I just don't like the idea of bumping into them; I'm that bent on skirting a nyaha kind of event. Sometimes I wait longer than usual and end up languishing on my desk in hunger for an hour, by which time I decide to go down using the stairs rather than the elevator.
What's more common, however, is them buying fastfood - I can smell wet burgers where I am - and me using the time to think of surprisingly positive work-related stuff. Earlier, I planned on holding off an episode preview until after lunch, since I still had to gather my blogging nature to write my thoughts on the last episode. With me grounded at my desk, I decided, oh, what the heck, I'll just do it now. Within twenty minutes, I was finished, with extra time to think about where to go to lunch, since I like to have things all planned out.
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I'm a touchy-feely person. Everybody knows that. Never mind if people find it annoying, or invasive, or half-homosexual. Never mind if it feels desperate bordering on loneliness; besides, Scott
always wanted a hug when he was called safe until last week. If that's the best way for me to feel that a certain connection's being made, then so be it. Don't ask.
It hasn't been bad lately, really, nine months of relying on words to feel the few hints of appreciation the world has left. I can't complain, or better yet, I shouldn't complain. It's something I should've seen coming, from the moment we let go of everything just to move forward. We made it through, we coped, but some have become more successful than others, and some still struggle.
My story has, of course, been elaborated virtually everywhere, and people probably find it annoying.
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I love my friends, and I will do almost, perhaps, practically anything to help them.
You can blame that on the desperation, the feeling that for the past years or so, I never really had anybody to lean on. The family's always there, or so society dictates, but there are just some things that you cannot discuss with them, especially in a world where you can't trust anyone. You just need someone else that can see things for you.
Maybe there's that, then, and maybe there's exasperation over why people treat you differently. There are groups, and there are those who go in between them, or in a more negative mindset, those who are left behind. I never really had groups; somehow I never related entirely with a certain experience, and although I got by most of the time, I still felt something was missing. Either it's just society dictating my tastes again, or I felt I deserved more.
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If there's one law of conversation, it's to listen, and listen attentively. It's to take interest in anything whoever's with you says. It's to treat it with respect, treat it with dignity, and see where it will lead you. It's to respond in a manner that fits the subject accordingly.
Whatever happens afterward isn't exactly as relevant as you think. Should you take a friendly stance, try not to offend, look accepting and be generally nice? Should you pick out a minute detail of what you heard, break it apart, point out the mistakes and insist that it gets changed? Should you underestimate the situation, distract the party and ease things up, if only temporarily?
What's the deal with asking these questions? All that matters is that you listen attentively. They asked for your time, and you asked for theirs. They have stories and problems and observations to tell, and you have questions and answers and distractions to provide. You think one thing, they think another, and it doesn't matter whether nothing meets halfway. The fact that it happened means they were paying attention, defending what the believe in, willing to take the hard way, and hopefully make everything better - or, at least, make sure the time they gave you is worthwhile, however flimsy the conversation is. It may, and will, change depending on who you're talking to, but the rule remains universal. Listen, and listen attentively.
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