Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Memory Part 1

In college, I often brought two umbrellas. There's always a girl in campus who forgot to bring hers and you never know when it'll rain.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

All It Takes...

On some days, you're simply looking for a compliment... from the right person.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Confidence, Or Lack Of It

I just realized I'm someone who needs constant words of reassurance. Failing that, the demons start attacking.

Friday, March 20, 2009


On some days, I feel like an idiot. I can only hope in the bigger scheme of things, there's not a lot of those.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A Change of Scenery

Sometimes, you need to do an activity that's vastly different from your current train of thought. It could be a hobby or a monotonous task. Mine is running. It gets me out of the house, see the sights, and exercises my physical muscles.

When I get back home, the problems might still be there, but I'm looking at it from a fresh perspective.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A Beautiful Name

I just realized the other day that my current crush has a beautiful name in the sense that it's wonderful to pronounce. Her first name and last name has a certain alliteration thanks to hard consonants. Unfortunately, in this tug of war between what's private and public, the former wins out.

What interests me about names is that they're part of Philippine society. Even with naming conventions, there's a clear divide. For example, most Filipinos have names derived from Spanish, Maria Theresa being one of the more common female names. So far, I haven't met any Filipino-Chinese whose first name is derived from Spanish (although I have met some Maria Theresa's). It's always Western: John instead of Juan, Peter instead of Pedro. I'm sure there are exceptions but majority of the Filipino-Chinese will take their names from Western sources.

And then there's the occasional weird but beautiful name. My first crush's name was Erin and that's a rarity. Even more interesting was her nickname, which was Nissie. I don't know which is better, although there's something demure about Erin (the reality however is something entirely different).

Going back to my present crush, well, her full name is a unique package and again, if nothing else, it's wonderful to pronounce. There's probably even something metaphorical in it.

The Curse of the Imagination

Sometimes, a lot of heartbreak is self-inflicted in the sense that what causes it is what you imagine rather than actually what happens.

For example, my crush is honestly just an acquaintance. I brought up the concept of falling in love with a phantom because when it comes to the details I don't know (or even those that I know), I invent them and become attracted to that part. That's how some people "fall out of love," when they actually meet their crush and find them to be the opposite of what they imagined (or fall short of their standards). And honestly, no one's telling you to fill in these gaps. But I think it's normal human curiosity to fantasize and create these "phantoms" in much the same way the Greeks created their pantheon.

And then there's the fear that arises from lack of communication. Again, these are all imagined. It might be the boyfriend who starts worrying because his girlfriend isn't responding to his calls or text messages (never happened to me because I never had a girlfriend in the first place). Or a wife worried because her husband is late (i.e. is he having an affair?). And this isn't limited to lovers. It could be anyone in a relationship, such as parents and their children (i.e. why didn't you immediately come home from school? You could have been kidnapped!). These worries tend to be flights of fancy, unlikely possibilities, and it's our creativity that gives rise to them.

Oh, and the one time our fears are actually true, we expect that all the rest to become true as well.

You do know that the stereotype of the writer is that they have fertile imaginations right? I wonder what they're thinking of their absent significant other right now.

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Irrationality-Powered Engine

The euphoria of falling in love (as in the love-at-first-sight kind of love as opposed to the let's-get-married type) isn't logical. We might rationalize it afterwards (i.e. it was her eyes...) but more often than not, the experience is an ambush, something you didn't expect and you're abandoned to deal with the consequences.

It's amazing how our body reacts to such a state. You're confused and you act in the most unexpected of ways. Even more interesting is the enzymes and chemicals that our bodies secrete. Whether it's the ecstasy or the depression kicking in, you transcend your normal limits. You might subsist on little food and little sleep. You shrug off concerns that would otherwise alarm you. You manage to accomplish physical feats such as jogging that extra mile or lifting a few additional pounds.

For good or for ill, this heightened state doesn't last long. It goes as easily as it came. I mean no matter how much you will it, it won't suddenly manifest itself (or go away). For me, it's like attempting to trap lightning in a bottle. Some things, however, cannot be tamed.

"There Are Other Fishes in the Sea"

It might seem like a consoling statement but it's not. Imagine entering a restaurant and you browse through the menu. You're hesitant as to what to order and after much deliberation, you settle for the prime-rib steak which is the house's specialty. You anticipate tasting the juicy meat and your mouth salivates. You tell the wait your order and he tells you it's unavailable.

At this point, anything else is damage control. That's not to say you can't enjoy the rest of your meal but you're not content when the waiter says "We don't have it sir/madam but there are other delicacies in the menu." It's simply not the same and your heart feels just as gutted. That's like saying the other person can easily be replaced when they're not. People are unique.

The Moment in Between

Throughout the decades, there's been numerous technlogical innovations that have facilitated communication: mobile phones, email, chat rooms, Twitter/Plurk, etc. In certain ways, it facilitated relationships (i.e. a phone call as opposed to mailing a letter to someone thousands of miles away) but the anxiety is still there. It could be the email that's unanswered for the past few days, the text message reply that didn't arrive in the next 10 seconds, or the lack of a Twitter response despite the other person updating his or her Twitts. Those moments of anticipation seems like an eternity and one's reaction is exaggerated. All sorts of suspicions start to creep in--and I'm not saying they aren't true--such as thinking that the other person is angry at you, cheating on you, or finally lost interest in you.

There are times when I simply want people to be direct and transparent but that's honestly not human behavior. Even I'm not always direct and transparent. And sometimes, I simply don't know what I want (much less need) and my actions are dictated by chance and circumstance.

The Replacement

The moment your heart is broken, you feel like an open wound. You want to patch it up, cover it with something. When a person I know breaks up with their significant other, I can sympathize why they suddenly look for someone else. It's a way of coping, of making the pain hurt less. But it's also not what I would condone.

During this fragile mental state, your senses are clouded. It's akin to picking up the next guy or gal or you meet in a bar when you're drunk. Sure, all's well at the start--you think that you've finally found someone, although in some instances a part of you knows that this isn't the "one," someone you simply happened to settle for. And then you slowly become sober and the shortcomings of this new person become more and more apparent. Perhaps you were too hasty in committing. Or maybe you meant the words that you said to him or her, but it seems so far away now.

I've been to that place and I know that's the point in time when I need to be the most skeptical. It helps that I'm unappealing and no one is usually intested in me.