I realized one thing this Tuesday. I have become really awkward in social occasions.
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GMA dared, the headline said
. Get Ampatuans.
I've already heard quite a lot about the Maguindanao massacre since the news first broke on Monday morning. I was at work, supposedly disconnected from the world, but I was on Twitter
too, and that's how I first learned of the disappearances. Ten hours later, the worst were confirmed, when the cars were found, when the bodies were found, one after the other, day after day.
That's how I also realized the possibly bigger implications of the crime, whose name is still being debated on. Maguindanao massacre? One of the poorest provinces in the country? Makes sense. Ampatuan massacre? Possibly, with the Ampatuans dominant in the region's politics, with two of its members occupying powerful positions in local governments. "Political warlords," they are called. Private armies at their disposal. Possibly, the hundred people who blocked the convoy of Esmael Mangandadatu's supporters. Possibly the police, God forbid the military.
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"So you aren't out yet? Ah, fine."
"What, you are or you are not? I just got in an elevator..."Read more »
Two phone-related bits came on the mail yesterday. The first was my bill, which apparently ballooned 300% (do I have my math right?) after all of the text messages I sent when I was in Singapore. That'd be a thousand bucks for a month's use. The second was a new SIM card.
That, honestly, was unexpected. I obviously still have a working SIM card, and the only time they've been replaced was when my phone got stolen. But I've been using this particular number for, I'm guessing, five years already. It's a corporate account, which is why I've been paying half my supposed phone bill for the past few months or so. Loyalty privileges, they say. So I figured, the new SIM card is a loyalty privilege, although the letter accompanying it was suggesting it was a necessary upgrade.
Perhaps. 780 contacts? More messages than ever? Cool, I would say, but I've been using phone memory for both my contacts and my messages. Whatever's left on my current SIM card is a remnant of whatever happened, let me check, two years ago. But I'm a sentimental git, the sort who gets extremely amazed at how much things change in a short time, and upon seeing the messages that I've forgotten about, I'm a little smitten at how far we've gone. Or, better yet, how much better those days were.
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The sucky thing with online friends is, after a couple of years or so, you'll cease being their friend. I'm looking at twenty people on my list right now, some of which I've met as far back as four years ago. Since then, I've only kept consistent contact with a few of them.
Let's be clear with that, though. I've deleted some people that are not in the list of twenty, when it was certain the conversations weren't going to last for more than a week. Some of the twenty, I've met personally. I just moved two named to the "friends" list, so that's a list of eighteen. Some of the eighteen are people who I knew through people I actually met - say, Daniel
's connected to Ella, or Erik
's connected to Valerie
. Some of the remaining sixteen have firmly entrenched themselves into the psyche that you can, more or less, call them friends, although I'm not sure how Alyssa
But the thing with online friends is, after a couple of years or so, both of you will realize that it won't go anywhere, and you both decide to spend time with your real-life friends. I have, after all, deleted around five on the list, not to mention the sixteen people collectively known as the shiny happy people. But I don't really have many real-life friends to speak of. Maybe it's the discontent with where I am right now, or maybe it's the fact that all I have are connections rather and friendships, and that means I still get to see all the stuff they do, and obviously, I don't.
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No, I'm not complaining about me not being able to write as many blog entries as I should. One, it's the November sweeps, and I find myself a bit busier than usual. Two, I came from Singapore, so I have a little bit more to work on, although thankfully it's all finished. Three, I actually have a lot of things to write about, and I've gone as far as outlining my thoughts on paper.
The catch, however, is this: I shouldn't write about those ideas just yet, because there are more pressing matters at hand. And that's where the problem is. "I want to write a blog entry but I just can't," I wrote on Twitter
. I knew I had to write something but I just couldn't. It's nothing really urgent, but it's one of those times when certain things around you trigger certain things inside you, and your brain flicks a switch and tells you to go write something. I managed at some point, but not today. "Unfortunately," I eventually told Stella
, "we are not encouraged to express ourselves, because it will 'hurt other people'."
There was, after all, some hesitation on my part to put those things into words. Part was, admittedly, because I couldn't articulate what I had in my head. But it's also because I've written so many things that way before, and always, the pay-off is pretty severe: things get cut off, people get cut off, and you've made more damage when you try explaining yourself, or just letting out. "But it's your blog," Icka
once told me, after reading one of my angrier blog entries, when I expressed anxiety over my intended subjects reading it and lashing back. More or less, she said, nobody should care about what I write on my public private space, because it is my private space, however public it may be.Read more »
One of the things I like about my two trips to Singapore so far is the breakfast buffet.Read more »