The new year

There was a bee under the fluorescent light. This was in my in-law's kitchen. Upon seeing it, the word popped out of my brain: Hymenoptera. Although I don't have a master's in animal behavior, to me, it was visibly stressed - it rubs its feet on its eyes the way people do when they don't have much sleep. It looked really lost and helpless. It was the first of January. I couldn't help but attribute the stress to yesterday's firecrackers.

Make Believe Melodies




Cycles

Interesting how I'm back to watching movies - and how I couldn't put myself to sit for longer hours to read the Italo Calvino book that I've been meaning to finish this year. Very odd. It's like entering in phases and cycles. I wonder what triggers this switch, or if there's a pattern behind it.

77

I have this friend, Y, who I get to see after a couple of years, but who I still feel close to, despite the distance. When we met at a sausage shack in Cubao last night I told him how we've actually met ten years ago online, during the heydays of blogging. We get to see each other once in a while: twice in a Korean joint near his university - when he was still a fledgling law student - while I was an advertising slave. I sometimes forget and had to remind myself that Y was one of those really quiet people at the get-go - laconic, if I may use the term. He needs some time to warm up to people. He's the type who wants you to do the talking at first, but alcohol loosens him up. He's still a smoker. We talked about a lot of things. In a way I always feel comfortable talking to him about things I would have never told anybody else - maybe it's the distance, that comfort you have with near-strangers. We went to two bars - one in Cubao, another in Timog. We talked about my family, his girlfriend. Our career. His car, a grad gift from his parents. Putting on weight. Past trips in Bantayan, in Bani, in El Nido, in Hanoi, in Osaka. Their skin regimen. Our bills and finances. We talked about our plans and dreams, our worst mistakes. When we saw a white Labrador I said I wanted to hug it. He said he didn't like pets in general. One difficult question: how does it feel to be a dad? I asked his opinion about the recent news about hazing in UST. His smartphone's wallpaper is an unflattering close-up of a very chubby face - his girlfriend's pic as a child. He never wears anything in his feet when driving - he wanted to feel the pedal. I had to bring up V and it fascinated him for as long as I could remember - When? How did it feel? What made you decide? Then there were more memories - my first cigarette, those night-outs we had with blogger friends in this bar in Katipunan, etc. Those were the days, I said, when we had so much time and little money.

Remarks

Begin as close to the end of the story as possible. - Kurt Vonnegut