Sunday, November 15, 2009

I'm like a bird...


It took me an hour and a half to get to where I work near the airport. From Munoz QC, my route took one jeepney ride, the LRT, then a shuttle which I had to look for near Mc Donalds Taft Avenue station. It was a rough ride compared to what I was used to the past year. With the jeepney ride itself, I could already smell the difference from the places it passed through - the markets, the shanties, the overly crowded streets flocked by employees of sorts looping their way through the vendors that have set up their stools and fixtures over inadequate pedestrian lanes... But I made it, and I didn't get hurt or anything, nor was I too uncomfortable to complain. I think I had more of the observant behavior while travelling. I couldn't help but notice the structural, statistical and societal difference of the environment compared to the very comfy 3 minute, non-polutted, not overpopulated, skyway-taxi-ride I used to take.

It dawned into me that I actually have transferred, moved, migrated, or settled in to a new place in QC. Well we can actually call it "moved back" since I lived there on and off the past few years. But it is only now that the disparity has become clear to me - the difference in terms of physical, emotional, and psychological environment. It seems like there's a direct inversion...

Last night Georgie cooked a sumptuous dinner, a simple rice and pork/chicken adobo combo. "Ang Sarap"! It was her welcome dinner for us. Immediately we felt the change in emotional state as we ate after transferring our stuff from the move out truck into the apartment. It was gracious though very simple. It was happy...

2 days before, Kenji also cooked dinner for us, it was his farewell treat, and the "Sinigang" was phenomenal... Kenji was teary eyed when we left. I didn't wanna leave him there... it was as if saying goodbye to an old emotional structure called "condo unit". Very isolated, very restricted that the walls seem to dictate restraint on possible emotional connections- that's how I would describe my room there in Cityland Condominiums. I would go home, get inside my room, close my door and it literally isolates me from Zander and Juan, my housemates there. It Isolates me from Kenji and Karlo all the more since they live 2 floors below. It isolates me from Elbert who is 3 floors down. It isolates me farther away from Alex who lives just in the neighboring building beside ours. All the people I've mentioned here are my dear friends who I identify with as family, and I guess that at this point in our relationships, it is important to be able to connect.

While traveling earlier, it occurred to me that I moved back into a very simple apartment far away in QC where the aura is vibrant as the doors are always open and the air is kind of free; a set up where anyone could practically smell anyone's fart so to speak... and I left a comfortable place that seemed to have secured me in the silence of my own room.
I guess in another perspective, both will have their own pros and cons, its probably situational and very dependent on where you are as a person in terms of your needs, in terms of your financial capacity, in terms of all the factors that you have to consider... I am learning and discerning a lot, I never really used to think and plan carefully where I live. I fly back and forth like a bird... I guess I never really identified with one particular place/house since my biological family left. It could be seasonal, it could be the way it is...I could only guess... But I'm now moving on into an old place I used to live in, and tomorrow is another day :)...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

If you wanna view paradise, simply look around and view it...`

A few moments ago I caught myself singing - "If you wanna view Paradise simply look around and view it...". I caught myself happy, I am happy...I am surprised. Surprised not because I am a sad person in general, but probably because I saw myself handle a supposedly difficult situation in a very good way. I am emotionally stable despite how big a deal the problem presented itself. Let me lay it down for you...
I joined a pageant called Mr. Gay World Philippines. I joined because I wanted to make a difference. As cliche as it may sound, I really did searched within my soul for it. I asked myself if it was inline with what I wanted to do in life. As a gay individual, I thought, I have been presenting myself as, probably, a forerunner of exhibitions, juggling roles as a drag queen during events,

a hiphop dancer persona in the dance floor, or once, as Mr. Club Government title holder. Thus, I may probably have built a handful of audience, who, I assume, I probably can and probably have influenced... though I'm thinking, I'm probably just talking about my friends to the very least, or, not even hehehe... but one thing is for sure, I've been quite a fixture in the Manila Gay scene. And this is why I thought I could probably take it to the next level, and maybe do something relevant...

"It will put me in a position wherein I can encourage others who are like us to be more comfortable about themselves and feel proud of who they are..." that's what I told the organizers when I was asked why I wanted to joined. I took it very seriously.

There's something about the cosmic world that if you are very focused on something, everything starts aligning into it. All that I needed in the pageant was provided for without much effort - a formal wear by JunJun Escario; my own make up artist Jet; extra trunks by ZON; shoes by Ernest; intelligent friends for the Q and A practice; teeth whitening gel from Georgie; and etc. Not to sound condescending, but it was quite easy. Even during the pageant night I was very calm, very in control. It was as if I was just watching myself perform, everything perfectly planned and executed. The words flew out of my mouth in the manner that it was suppose to as I answered the final question.

It was quite odd actually, I remember asking myself why am I not as nervous as I'm suppose to. I somehow had an inkling that something was wrong, though everything was going so right. And so it happened... I did not get the title, a lot of questioning followed, from the host himself Boy Abunda, the judges who approached me right after, and the director of the pageant who suggested to review the results. It led me to question it myself... to make the story short, I was unsuccessful in trying to get an answer I could trust. In the process I became jaded about the pageant...and sad to say that I may have done trouble not only to myself but also to the pageant organizers.

With all that has been said, I had to find a stop. I had to identify where I could put myself at ease and settle for something that will render me peace. I did become bitter, I did become hateful, I did become ungrateful... I can gladly admit. I just allowed myself, and I could honestly say I enjoyed it. But I didn't enjoy it that much for me to get stuck. I somehow knew there's a higher stage in the process of healing. So I stepped up the ladder fast! That's why I'm surprised, because I don't heal fast, I didn't used to. I guess its a coming of age, and I like it.

There's a lot of things I am hopeful for despite what happened. That I was able to spread the message of diversity, that I was able to set a standard in the pageant itself, that the pageant also learned their part, and so on. But for now I know I have learned a lot, I know I have given a lot, I know I have done well, and for that, I am happy...
I am once again amazed at how beautiful life many experiences to make, and this one is a very good one...

If you wanna view paradise, simply look around and view it...

Friday, March 6, 2009

Existential Shit...

It felt solemn that I was alone. As the universe flew around me I was reminded that I am alone, that's how it began and that's how it ends. I am stricken yet not overwhelmed with this idea, I am alone...

It is not a sad realization, it is a validation. My dependence to everything seems to have melted away into all the emotions I have explored. My need to feel and be felt have been expressed in all the forms I thought physically imaginable. I have been what I have become, in many forms, with all the intricacies I could have embellished.

I sit still remembering all the anger and pain and how they burst out of me in all the possible ways I knew. I sit still remembering all the happiness, joy and ecstasy and how they pleased and gratified me. I sit still feeling satisfied and comforted by my state of being...alone.

How lucky I am! Because the universe worked with me, with all my atrocities, with all my hunger for pleasure and pain. How lucky I am that it all happened at a time when they were all suppose to happen. How lucky I am that in the explosion of all these things put together, I am still here alone... existing.

How lucky I am to be alone and yet feel the most overpowering feeling overpowering me, overpowering my understanding, overpowering my inability to express it in words, overpowering my limitation to call it in the most simple term... LOVE. How lucky I am to be born of it and to be able to boastfully identify myself with it. How lucky I am to claim it, yet it is not mine. How lucky I am to love.

I am love...

And I am alone...

We all are...

Thursday, February 19, 2009

On Debt

I never really quite understood the world crisis that's going on, I only have a "not so clear" idea of why its happening and why it's happened. I mean how can the whole world go poor on its own. Poor against who? Who's rich now? How can the whole world have a debt on it's own? To whom is it indebted with? The World Bank? How can the world be indebted on it's own bank? I find it really absurd. To examine this is really a very painstaking idea on its own. I mean the visuals we see all over the news of the stock market - the graphs of the rising unemployment, names of companies that have closed, the recent countries that have succumb to recession - though hyped up, these are all very confusing for me. Not that it isn't confusing before, well probably not if you're a businessman. But I could truly say that in a way the stock market has taken center stage amongst the outstanding shows we watch everyday. It's like a TV series, with its own story and treatment. The people of the world - the protagonist, the world economy - the antagonist. It has a beginning, as we began evolving and as we learned business and economy, not to mention capitalism, which I think is the culprit. It has a middle, which we now are facing. And and an end? It probably should have, and that is what we are all waiting for I guess? It's all so strange for me, but at the same time, might be the greatest story yet I have ever encountered in my life.

But there is a kind of saving grace that I feel while trying to understand this whole chaos. And that is that I feel a bit secure knowing that it's happened, I'll explain to you why. I have debts on my own, so it makes me feel a bit better to know that I am not alone. In fact, the world is on my side. I and the rest of the world are equals. Of course thats a silly idea. But that's how I truly feel. It makes me really wonder if the mechanism of how the world got indebted might be similar to how I personally got indebted. Can I truly compare and simplify the world problem as being similar to mine? Because I somehow have a good idea about how I got indebted, I somehow know the psychological or even emotional foundations of why I never learned to handle money, property or possession very well. I somehow understand the reasoning behind the way I value material things. It's pretty presumptuous, but I stand by it. I can actually pin point specific experiences in my life that exhibited corruption, or where I got corrupted, or even where I was being corrupt. Still pretty presumptuous but I still stand by it. I don't think that I need a shrink or a hypnotist to bring me back to those experiences. I know them by heart and somehow I bring them with me all the time, specially at times when I truly indulge myself on things, when I'm unable to discipline and limit my want, or wants.

No, don't start with me with the self help stuff, if thats on your mind. Been trying to, I'm telling you. I can truly say that I'm trying, I am. The good news is that as I have been trying, I have slowly realized how hard and how complicated it really is. How intertwined it is with whole person that I am.

Oh how the world works!

Funny how I say that because it brings me back to the very topic I was trying to understand - the world crisis. How do we recover? How do we go about it? Where do we go to when everywhere will become poor as have been widely expressed? Can we truly transcend debt?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

To Gym or Not to Gym

My muscles hurt, specifically my biceps. I worked out 2 days ago after a 3 month hiatus from the gym routine. But it feels better now compared to yesterday when it was really hard to stretch all over making me feel sluggish altogether. I had to aide myself with Alaxan FR, its a pain reliever. I don't actually know how it works. Does it clear and drain away the toxins causing the pain in the muscles, or does it block the pain receptors from the muscles itself, disabling it to send signals to the brain, thus no pain?

As they say no pain no gain, so I have to get back to the gym. The thing is, I actually have no legitimate access to go to this specific gym where almost every gay guy I know goes, yes, Fitness First. I have a friend in one of it's mall branches, who apparently, has the power to push a button under the front desk counter so the gates would open and let me in. It's been like that for quite sometime now, even before my hiatus. I haven't been prioritizing payments for the gym, thats the truth, and it's only maybe now that I'm starting to realize why. Aside from it being expensive, there are other reasons. We'll go into the that in a short while.

I think I gained more than 7 lbs, from 135 to 142, it's alarming for me. I'm 5'6" and 3/4ths and my ideal body weight is actually 135-140lbs. But, I still am alarmed. Yes, I am so vain. But it's not a breaking news that most gays are. That's why the gym business is quite successful in my opinion, because we constitute a big percentage of their clientèle and our numbers are growing if you've noticed.

We all want to look good. You know why? Because looking good is feeling healthy. When you're healthy you look good, when you look good, it raises up your chances of being noticed, thus more chances for sex! Quite very stereotypical of me right? Well let's just say that that is just one of the reasons why gay people go to the gym. There are other reasons - the cruising, the straight guys, and oh! The sauna! But just to be fair, let's not forget the actual workouts and classes.

Let's get to the point. I think I've figured out why I haven't been paying fees for the gym. It's because it doesn't suffice my pain anymore. The 9 years of working out has already paid off. I've already poured out myself into all the sweat my body has produced, in the hope that I would look better, that I would have better sex encounters, and that my life would seem better. There was something hidden in every single contraction of my muscles, something I wanted to express, or get rid of. And I cant help but think that it could have been really my insecurity. The form of pain which I could only guess to be the bi-product of all the other pains I've had in my life. I've got rid of a lot of that PAIN, therefore I have already GAINED. So the saying "no pain no gain" is actually very true in this perspective. I have less pain so I have less to gain in the gym. That's probably why Alaxan FR is more relevant to me right now, because it takes away body pain, and its only at an already marked up price of 15 pesos compared to the 2,300 per month fee for the gym.

But then again it doesn't really pain to be working out again, or maybe there are other pains? Hmmm? They always come anyway.