Results and discussion

INTRODUCTION

Many times, I try to make a new post in this blog, but fail. There are days when the story or the vignette gets delivered in the morning, a package waiting at my doorstep, despite the fact that we don't count on our doorsteps.

OBJECTIVES

1. To come across the great Inspiration while playing on iTunes the Destiny's Child album, "Survivor";
2. To drop hints as to what the creative process is, or the lack of it; and
3. To get acquainted with boredom besides scanning wooden veneers in a class.

METHODOLOGY

My mother e-mailed. She said I should stay away from cigarettes and beer, which I've been doing for a couple of months. She also said she sees my arrival three months from now a "threat", especially in her credit cards.

My sister doesn't reply to e-mails regarding a new camera from Fujifilm I've been eyeing. It doesn't have any price yet and, according to a source, will be distributed this coming February.

A story I wrote got published just this Sunday, here. I'm hoping my father wouldn't know anything about it. The night before it was published, I was thinking of slaving my life away on an office, making layouts for a magazine on fashion or art.

I am constantly gaining fat, and it's worrying me.

Ablutions

image by Teun Hocks

1. Two girls were talking about gyms and trainers, what's cheap, why go? Vanity, one of them said matter-of-factly.
2. My finger bled a while ago, in the tricycle, on my way to a 9AM class. The skin on one of my fingers was chafed from one of those straps in my backpack. It bled a lot. I really panicked because I didn't know how to deal with blood.
3. Here is the sound of shells in a pot on a stove in a Friday evening. It's for pasta.
4. I'm stuck reading Zorba the Greek, in between Frederick Barthelme's Law of Averages. I hope I can read a lot tonight.

Long way

One of David Lynch's sketches; can be found here.

In the jeepney, with others: four Korean exchange students, two construction workers, three sexagenarian professors, a student, another construction worker, and the driver in front. One of the Korean girls, around eighteen years old, pony-tailed, tried imitating Tagalog words upon her hearing it, and the two construction workers did their best in instructing: Ba-yad po.

Then: sa-la-mat po.

We found ourselves laughing about finding ourselves in the situation, as if we were on our way to one of those field trips expecting a picnic, like that I had in Museong Pambata or Nayong Pilipino (I even remember my Mother had fried tapa for me for lunch in a green Tupperware, the oil awash on all sides, and sat near the fake Mayon Volcano). 

Now that tupperware I shall frame and put in a museum, suppose that it doesn't have molds or anything bacterial yet.

The Delayed Christmas Post

Before anything else: I found this in my drafts! It's a really belated post (December 28), but I'd share them just because.

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A summary of a beautiful line from what I read from a short story from Zyzzyva: that feathers are beautiful, that when you spread them like a fan, it's like seeing all the sunrises in the world.[1]

I do have my version and it's not really about feathers. I don't have any interest in ornithology, though I really think the opening lines of the story was superb.

This one, though, is about flavors. I was doing the typical experiment in the kitchen, spiffing up meals with awkward sauces. I made these and it was quite an explosion, a sunrise of sorts. Of course, Christmas is all about sharing.

MAIN COURSE:

3 bratwursts (or veal sausages)
Indian mixed pickle
Thai satay sauce
Korean kimchi
White rice

The really tricky stuff is where to buy these in the Philippines. Santi's makes a good bunch of sausages (with strict expiration dates, so mind them), and Trinoma (and I guess other Ayala malls) has a delicatessen worth mentioning.

The Indian mixed pickle costs Php90 in an Indian store in Magallanes. The store name: Incredible India! They really have a lot of legit sauces and Indian stuff, and I'm really into their flavors lately. They sell fenugreek leaves and cardamom and masala.

Both Thai Satay sauce and Korean kimchi are easy to find.

1. Grill those bratwursts for a few minutes.
2. After slicing the bratwursts, in a toothpick, or on a spoon, pile all the ingredients in this fashion, for the desired explosion: rice first, as the base; then, the kimchi; the sausage; the satay sauce; and the mixed pickle.
3. Yummy. Like a war going on inside the mouth.

DESSERT:

Edam cheese (or Queso de Bola)
Walnuts
Port wine
Apples

1. Just munch all these and do your own thing. The three others are the essentials on enjoying a port, but you can experiment and try biscuits, too, or anything sweet. Port wine is really sweet and strong, by the way.
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1. I don't have the book with me, and I'm in this computer shop renting a unit for 40Php/hour. Unbelievable. I shall credit the writer and will write the quote in verbatim as soon as I get back to my college apartment with hacked Wi-Fi!

A shot of espresso

1. There's that lucrative option of throwing everything away when it's about to be completed, just because you're against with its completion, or you're just not comfortable with its finality. It's probably a form of separation anxiety.

2. I had a deal with myself. If nothing happens in the span of five months, I guess it's high time to jettison the entire plan. This deal expires on the 1st of April.

3. Maybe it's really not a good idea to exert so much effort on a paper when you don't really get what you deserve. I'm not talking about grades. I'm talking about respect from professors. I may be one of the stupid students, but I'm trying to do my best. I just don't excel that much, alright. There were probably rumors about my drug dependency (which is so untrue, since I came out clean last October, or September, though I partially agree with those accusations, I just want to get things done without any further arguments, thankyouverymuch) or my being someone who can really make a difference but who didn't, because of drugs, or stupidity. Unbelievable.

Reader #2

Jeep bound to UPLB. Sky-blue collared shirt, shorts. It was raining. The man looked like in his thirties. He was reading Luke Short's The Feud at Single Shot. It looked very much like my copy of Salinger--from the browning down to the typeface. The rain surprised everybody, even the driver, who forgot to bring his trapal, so the rain came inside the jeep in strong gusts. A woman besides him opened her umbrella inside the jeep in desperation. The two of them were in a dubious relationship, probably with their conversation:

Man: "Why did you open the umbrella?"
Woman: "It's the cool thing to do."
Man: "You're funny--"
Woman: "We shouldn't have paid our fare. We're already wet."

Later, the driver apologized by saying he just really forgot the trapal, that's all. 

"No matter--it always rains, these days," I said, my voice straining for the driver to hear, amidst the rain. 

Workshops

  • "Oh yes I navel-gaze a lot, it's a lovely piece of attraction."
  • "I am never going to be someone who can write something as enchanting as this."
  • "Today, it's all about the futility of writing a genetic criticism, which recalls the preface (argument) of Derrida's Of Grammatology."
  • "There are mangoes and mangoes and mangoes, all resembling the dream last night, which I forgot."
  • "Come to think of it, cockroaches are drugged when sprayed with Baygon."
  • "3:45 AM is a PNR train from Bicol."
  • "Don't ever use the words 'shattered', 'something', 'heart' (as in the anatomical part), and 'love' in a story."

Berdeng Kometa

Lasing na lasing ako 'nun. Kumakain kami ng pinya. Sinabi ko sa kanya na magpapaanod na lang ako sa kanal na dinuraan ko, baka sakaling may patunguhan ako. Naisip ko 'nun kung bakit nga ba pinagtaasan ng kilay ang sagot ko noong tanungin ako kung saan ako pupunta: ang sabi ko, bahala na, kung sa'n ako dalhin ng paa ko. Tumutunog ang mga Christmas lights na parang Nokia 3310 ng nakalipas. Tumawa siya.

Warehouse

I was thinking about a warehouse the other day. The story would be written by an eleven year-old, and it would be all about this huge warehouse he had locked away for some time. He kept on forgetting its contents, so he kept skipping the day he would open the warehouse once again. When he did, the entire contents of the warehouse fell. He almost didn't make it. There were boxes of airplanes and computer keyboards and ID pictures and envelopes and a dancing ballerina and the sound of mosquito hitting an electric repellant, like fireworks--and everything occurred. He found himself feeling like a sixty-six year old man standing on a chest-deep of detritus.

#1

I imagine a book entitled The Confessions of a World Class Horse and how it would go about discussing different neighs on different occasions. It's probably the stress I've been experiencing before I graduate.

The Year of Growing Up

I'm not buying the idea of summing up my year, but it seems wonderful to summarize a year in what's remarkable, in books, etc. Here it is:

1. John Ashbery, in his novel-length poem Flow Chart.
Still in the published city but not yet
overtaken by a new form of despair, I ask
the diagram: is it the foretaste of pain
it might easily be? Or an emptiness
so sudden it leaves the girders
whanging in the absence of wind,
the sky milk-blue and astringent?
Ashbery opens the book in these lines, and from it the poetry never ends. What I did here seemed an injustice, since to put an excerpt is like exhibiting dentures without the complete set of teeth. His words are incisive, his objects encased in amber, then hammered until the entire thing breathes.

I've never seen this kind of poetry until I found this at Booksale for Php10. It's worth sitting down with a cup of coffee on a Friday night.

2. The first sip of port wine deserves a place here.

3. Drive is phenomenal. It's a good action film: not much of the stunts, and it's still pumped with adrenaline from heists and love affairs and the entire West Coast terrain (gritty and grimy). Plus the soundtrack is superb. I wasn't expecting anything good from Ryan Gosling, really--but he was Time Magazine's Coolest Guy!

4. Donald Barthelme and his wit! I've read City Life and Come Back, Dr. Caligari, and both are phenomenally funny and witty, without even trying hard. Also, his brother Frederick's Laws of Averages is a good read, too.

5. Reeder 1.0 is the app of all time.

Cellar doors

  1. sultana
  2. dulcimer
  3. gabardine
  4. bismuth
  5. anemone
  6. wren
  7. bergamask
  8. turpentine
  9. jewel glue