about the talking fish

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Writer. Wheelman. Occasional DIY mechanic. Walking collection of hang-ups. Hopeless romantic. Old-school. Analog soul in a digital world. I am all of these things and more.

Sunday, June 27, 2004

This month's HCP EB seemed a little different from those of recent history. True, the venue was new (Blue Wave instead of The Fort), but other than that this one seemed a little more special.

Rain did not spoil the EB this time around, so members and newbies were free to mingle out in the open. Came across a few new faces myself and I got to venture outside my usual Tropang City barkada. Some new dude in an EK Civic sported a brand new Top Secret Gold paintjob (what a damn cool color!), with a sweet-looking Momo steering wheel and gorgeous Recaro SR V bucket seats in red and black. A couple of old-but-sorely-missed members made their welcome return appearances as well. A few petrolheads tested their cars on the free roads.

Racer Mikko David was on hand to record the proceedings for the local motorsports show "Slipstream." He toted his camera and tripod around, hovering around the crowd and the more notable engine bays of some of the members. Later on he asked for a white Honda of every model (EG, EK, ES Civics; CB Accord; RD2 CR-V; SX8 City) to be arranged in a semicircle around HCP president Juno Ongteco, while the latter explained to viewers what HCP was all about and invited members to join in.

After the shooting was done, Mikko and I talked at length about the situation of the show and the local circuit racing industry in general. He told me he was looking for a scriptwriter and any other help he could scrape up, as he was basically a one-man production house as of the moment and he still hasn't been paid for his work (4 episodes' worth). I expressed interest in the show a couple weeks ago, and he invited me to come along on the race weekends to watch and get a feel of how the Subic races were held. He also requested a little creative input on my side, and if my schedule permitted, some scriptwriting duty as well.

Mikko's a likeable guy and it's obvious he loves circuit racing. As we may all know, though, the guy also has to earn from what he loves and he needs more than a little help and support. I'm mulling his offer over, actually. I'd like to help project local motorsport as something accessible to everyone and not just some rich man's hobby. If "Slipstream" can also encourage people to get their adrenalin rush from the racetrack and NOT on public roads then I'm game for it as well.

Only concern for me now is how to break this to my parents. Going to Subic is no joke as it's kinda far, but Mikko assured me there's a house where we can stay overnight there. My dad's aware of how much I love cars and so he's encouraged me to look for a career that revolves around them. This just might be it. It might not pay well, yes, but the experience is what counts, no?

After the sun went down we trekked over to Gerry's Grill for dinner. There were a lot of us HCPers on one long table and it was really fun having all these people around to talk to. Had to split at 8pm though.

Thursday, June 24, 2004

"Kapatiran," the annual DLSU Pops Orchestra welcoming, was held today as Manila Day exempted us from class. I can't say I enjoyed it 100% but I learned a few things from today's experience.

Somehow I've lost the ability to trust others. I've become quite sullen in the way I approach people, opting to be stubborn and obstinate than to be open-minded and easygoing. I know I shouldn't be the type to take bullshit from others but I can't seem to distinguish between some things are actually lessons for my own benefit, and the negligible remainder of those that are actually things I have the right to defend myself against. With Pops I should realize I won't last long if I stubbornly stick to my guns all the time. I need to stay back and listen to what the other members have to say as they've been around far longer than I have.

I feel ashamed and immature compared to the rest of my peers there. I have 5 terms to turn things around.

Monday, June 21, 2004

Mela and I have been talking lately over YM. Nothing special, just the usual chitchat. When I asked about how things were with her boyfriend, I was surprised to know they were off since summer. Turns out his mom didn't approve of her being a Filipina because he came from a Chinese family.

Honestly I thought this sort of case made it impossible for Chinese women to date Pinoy men. I didn't know it was the other way around as well. And it doesn't stop there. Judging from some HCP friends' experiences, Chinese men also are pretty much discouraged to date Filipina women too.

Year after year I hear the same stories about this sort of thing going around. What is it with Chinese families and this obsession of keeping their bloodline pure? I've heard of so many reasons, the most convincing being that the Chinese simply consider themselves a superior race. There was this other thing that Filipinos might just cheat Chinese families out of their wealth.

Mela was right. When it all comes down to it, two things are painfully clear. One, this is racial discrimination, and two, this isn't even valid as most Filipinos would have Chinese blood in them anyway.

Chinese girls have got to be some of the cutest I've run across since I started college. I admit that much. The problem lies when most if not ALL the girls you run into are Chinese and you can't even court a single one of them.

Women and their little mind games. I'm sick of constantly falling for the deception card they play all the time. Now I won't take any of that bullshit, not anymore.

If being true to myself means ending up a bachelor my entire life then so be it. At least I ain't the one digging up my own hole to fall into.

Sunday, June 20, 2004

H'wag ka nang mag-alala
Hinding-hindi ako inlab sa iyo
Bakit ba pakiramdam mo pa yata
Lahat kami ay naaakit mo?
Miss miss pakitigil lang plis
Ang iyong pagpapantasya
Di ka na nakakatuwa
Papagulpi na kita sa gwardyang may batuta!

Hindi ko talaga ma-gets kung bakit ka ganyan
Ang feeling mo'y sabik sa iyo ang lahat ng kakakalihan
Sori pagpasensyahan mo na
Mali talaga ang iyong inaakala
Lahat kami ay nandidiri sa iyo
Ikaskas mo na sana ang mukha mo sa semento!

Di kami natu-turn sa kutis mong kulay tsamporado
Di kami naaakit sa labi mong garabutso
O please naman pakitanggap mo na lang ang katotohanan
Na ganyan ka pinanganak
H'wag ka nang magpapanggap
Na ikaw ay isang dalagang ubod ng ganda
Kahit na
Alam naman natin na ang karakas mo
Ay ubod ng sama

Siguro nga naman ay may mga mas pangit pa sa iyo
Ngunit hindi sila nagpapa-cute katulad mo
Nakakabadtrip ka,
Nakakairita t'wing ika'y nakikita
Di ko alam ba't ang laki ng ulo mo
Mag-ingat-ingat ka baka ikaw ay sagasaan ko!

--- Parokya ni Edgar, "Silvertoes"

Ahh, I feel BETTER already.

Women can't fool me like that again.

Friday, June 18, 2004

I have serious beef against CR-V drivers.

I don't mean to generalize, but the CR-V drivers I've encountered tend to be the nastiest private drivers I've ever come across. This is proven from months and months of being on the receiving end of their malicious moves. They swerve, they cut you off, they deliberately compromise one's legitimate overtaking maneuvers...and they just keep on doing it.

It's gotten so bad that whenever I see CR-Vs in my field of vision, I immediately anticipate bullshit driving coming my way. Of course I can never talk about this in the confines of HCP (and I believe my CR-V-driving clubmates are responsible drivers) but this mayhem has just got to stop.

I'm finally inside the DLSU Pops Orchestra's marketing committee. Cool. Sleepless days and nights await me from here on in, I guess.

I've noticed there are a lot of seriously cute girls there. I particularly dig this drummer chick from Assumption College Makati that plays kick-ass drums. She's so cute everyone can't help but look at her and stare.

I've spent my first 7 hours of residency there and I seriously enjoy all the jam sessions the guys go on to. I finally get to join an org that can fulfill my hunger for great music. Best to consider myself really lucky.

Feeling a bit better now. The semi-fevers have gone and my nose has stopped running for the most part. All I'm left with is an itchy throat and a raspy cough.

Wish I could say the same with my lovelife. Ha ha ha!

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

I'm sort of sick. My head hurts, my nose leaks mucus as if it's a leaky faucet (wasted an entire roll of tissue during QUATECH) and I'm generally just feeling weak. Yesterday I played my first game at Villamor and I noticed I was definitely not feeling well. I don't have a fever yet though, which is good news. It's a busy time right now.

On a side note I am glad I'm now part of the DLSU Pops Orchestra's marketing committee. Finally got into the org I've dreamed of entering since high school. The people have been nice so far and I love hearing these gifted musicians jam along. I kinda wish I could learn a bit of drumming from the "masters" while I work there.

There's a mad rush for yearbook writeups because most of us just decided to get working on it at the last minute, ha ha ha. That includes me too. Heheheh.

Monday, June 14, 2004

Tell me if I can afford to be with you
I find it hard to think that you are gone
Is it okay if I run after you
To push myself, just to be
With you?

--- Sugar Free

Sunday, June 13, 2004

I've said this once and I'll say it again...I can never seem to find a perfect pair of spectacles. No matter how hard I look for sunglasses there isn't a frame that suits my face 100% well.

Things aren't getting any better for my eyesight. My eyes will slowly but surely deteriorate (my eyesight isn't 20/20 as it is) and I'll need a good pair soon enough.

My mom got a new phone yesterday, a Nokia 6600.

Weird thing is, for all its sophistication, I can't seem to find a way to up the size of the typeface for text messaging. That'd help my mom a LOT. Everywhere else the typeface is readable at half arm's length; the text messaging window necessitates bringing my face very close to the phone. What more for my mom?

Nokia are you reading this?

Relationships...they're all that I think of in recent times.

I have to admit I got very lucky with my generous ex in all the 5 months we were together. I doubt if I'm 100% over her, but I am convinced that the ghosts of the past aren't haunting me as strongly as they used to. Although I get the occasional mild shock seeing someone who looks eerily like her, I can shrug it off now and leave it to coincidence.

For now I want to prove to myself that I can make a relationship last with genuine effort on my part. I want to teach myself self-temperance. No hot and heavy stuff right off the bat; I'd like to work for it. I don't want to force my future partner to do things she's not ready for, nor do I want her to demean herself for me. I want to do what I can, as much as I can, to make a relationship last and last well.

Trish did say I was a sucker for love...the eternal hopeless romantic. I guess that's true. It's an addictive feeling, being giddy in love with someone, but I know that's not all there is to it. Keeping a relationship intact concerns many ups and downs, so I've read in an old issue of Redbook, and the key is to make "honeymoon" phases return over and over.

I've been fortunate enough to meet and mingle with some pretty attractive women recently. None of them are attainable yet though. That's just as well; I might not even have enough time to enter and maintain a relationship in the first place if I do make it into Pops.

Love is only a feeling (drifting away)
When I'm in your arms I start believing (it's here to stay)
But love is only a feeling anyway

Love is only a feeling (drifting away)
And we gotta stop ourselves believing (it's here to stay)
'Cause love is only a feeling anyway...

--- The Darkness, "Love is Only a Feeling"

Friday, June 11, 2004

Out of nowhere, JM Ibañez buzzed me last night on YM. It's been years since I'd heard from the guy and it was quite the welcome surprise.

Turns out he was out of UA&P and now in AMA as a freshman, while juggling his time with developer work. Not bad. At least he's a proper member of the workforce now. He seems fine and dandy, and like me he missed the halcyon days when working at our high school magazine Counterpoint was all that mattered.

He's also quite the driver these days and I gave him some tips on how to better harness the power of his 1.3 Ford Lynx. I'd like to meet up with him someday and have one of our long friendly chats.

I am so pissed off with teachers that presume their students can learn everything without them putting an effort into teaching. I now detest MARKCU1.

Personally this major subject has been nothing more than a major insult. I do all the readings, I listen to what Greek my prof feel like spouting at the moment yet it never seems to satisfy her.

What an insatiable sadist.

Applied for membership into the DLSU Pops Orchestra's marketing committee...again. This time Rachel and Tantan handled the interview and they seemed pretty impressed and bewildered with some of my answers (especially that one on appeasing a disgruntled sponsor, HA HA HA!).

I don't mean to be boastful but I think I stand a good chance of getting in, as my rusty-but-still-good layout skills can probably do wonders for their print materials. They mentioned I'd have to go through hosting duty and with enough practice I can probably do that. As for pleading with company execs to get into their mounds of money for sponsorship...I'll have to do some work on my diplomacy but I think I can do that too.

If I do get accepted into Pops, I'm going to sacrifice a lot of things. Badminton for one might be reduced to just a once-a-week thing and that's kinda infrequent, given that I play twice a week nowadays. Flexibility might screw with the set sked for fetching my sister home. Moreover I'll have to figure out how to squeeze in the thesis shooting. But I'll work something out.

I had a great time at Villamor yesterday despite losing two of my games and winning only one. Even with that, I have to say I think I'm getting better at this sport as I can react faster and smash deeper and with more direction than before.

A couple of these games were played against Caren, an attractive young woman whom I thought was older than me at first. Turns out she was just in her first or second year at San Juan de Dios, taking nursing. I thought she was older than me. I guess it was the way she acted.

She asked me the same thing. I told her I was 21; she said she thought I was 17 or something. She added that maybe it was the way I acted.

Now upon hearing this I didn't know what to make of it. Was this a compliment or a nicely hidden putdown?

Thursday, June 10, 2004

Bumped into Nicole again the other day. She's still as cheerful and as beautiful as ever. Seems like she was delayed coming to school because she came from the US from summer vacation.

Turns out she had Atty. Dimayuga for COMLAW1 too. She clued me in on some details. As long as I was active in recitation I'd get a good grade. He doesn't really teach though so we wouldn't really learn. I told her Dimayuga was okay so far, despite coming very late on a few occasions (lawyer working hours I guess).

She asked me to enroll in Economics 3 next term; I said sure, why not. I'd make it so that the two of us can be classmates again and we could help each other out. I miss that girl's wacky demeanor and jokes. As always, Nicole was badgering me to watch more movies. Heheheheh.

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

It's just the second or third week of class and I already see things I don't like.

There's this girl who seems to be my classmate for two or three subjects. I was introduced to her via Johnas, Bianca's friend from high school. At first the two of them wanted help on MARKCU1, which I offered willingly.

However it's gotten pretty annoying. I can sense this girl does not do any thinking of her own. She doesn't read the assigned chapters, she doesn't do her homework...I'm pretty much amazed at how she managed to enter DLSU at all, waht more last through 2 years. I found out it was mostly through cheating.

Truth be told this girl doesn't have a brain of her own, so she makes "friends" out of her new classmates and wants them to do the thinking for her. She's got a bevy of "friends" from QUATECH and MARKCU1 to help her out and heaven knows if she has more "braintrust" doing her shit for her. Personally I find it offensive and disgusting. She should at least put in some effort into her studies, like my STAT102 classmates did, but she doesn't. What an airhead.

I ain't helping you out of the pit you're digging for yourself.

GENDERS (Gender Studies) has been an eye-opener so far. It's been interesting and it's forced me to rethink and reconsider how I look at other people, especially those of the LGBT variety (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender).

I admit to being quite the heterosexist and homophobe. I guess it wouldn't hurt if I tried being more tolerant of LGBTs though. I got three months to get started.

I have to admit the local bading language is a work of art, though. Not to mention it's actually a little funny to listen to, with the most unlikely terms used to mean something else.

On my ridiculously long break today, I managed to bump into my old Vietnamese MARKET1 classmate, Thai, in the library. I'd seen him studying in the carrels a couple times before, and I decided to say hi and exchange a few words.

He was beginning his major subjects for his Management of Financial Institutions degree, so he was pretty much in the library all day despite his classes beginning at 4:50pm. Seems like Thai likes the library a lot; he says he gets to study there a lot better. On a typical day he's there from the early morning coming from his condominium at nearby Kassel.

I told him our common MARKET1 classmate Wujin (he's Chinese) was my classmate in QUATECH this term as well, and the two of us were pretty much doing well under our professor. Turns out Thai also had Mrs. Umali for QUATECH last term too and he had nothing but praise for her.

Mentioning that a book I was looking for was upstairs, I said goodbye to him and wished him well on his quiz.

'Tis nice how Thai's very appreciative of the DLSU library. It kinda inspired me. I brought home a couple of F. Sionil Jose books for personal consumption.

On the way home drivers seemed to be a little crazier tonight than they were on any other night. I can't say I wasn't part of the culprit but I certainly wasn't an accident waiting to happen.

Most notable was an experience I had on the Expressway after overtaking slower traffic. I let my speed climb to 105 km/h to pull away a little. I was surprised to see two round headlights tailing me at a distance way closer than is safe.

I tried adding a bit more speed, to give me and my pursuer the acceptable 2-second gap, but the driver just matched my speed and kept that unreasonably close gap. At this point the C-5 offramp and merge point was upon me and I decided to set up for my exit. I braked and signaled a lane change to the right as the pursuer streaked past.

Imagine my surprise when I saw that my pursuer was an OWNER TYPE JEEP! Now I know owner jeeps can be quick because they're lightweight (one of them humiliated drag Civics with a 12-second quarter mile a year back), but this maniac was doing 120 when busier traffic was looming---and there didn't seem to be any effort in major braking (or maybe that was because his brake lights were indistinguishable under braking?). The driver just kept swerving, not mindful of the consequences of crashing the relatively flimsily built car.

Even more concerning...I got to tail the silver jeep a little later and I saw that there was a full load of passengers inside.

Some people just keep looking for ways to die earlier...

Friday, June 04, 2004

Lately I've turned into quite the chocolate junkie.

After years of steering myself away from frequent consumption of the brown stuff, the past two months have seen me craving more and more of it. Recent faves have been classic Toblerone, Kit Kat Chunky (basically a huge-ass Kit Kat finger), Snickers, Nestle Crunch and whatever else I happen to see in the fridge. I steer away from Cadbury's and diabetes-inducingly sweet candy bars though.

Even more unusually, I seem to understand now why girls love the stuff. No, I don't feel anywhere like I'm head over heels in love whenever I dig my teeth into a Kit Kat Chunky, but I do feel a little more sober and relaxed.

I feel like I need more chocolate...hmmm...

There's always one thing I never fully understood about myself after all these years, and that concerns my seemingly endless obsession with self-pity.

I can never somehow give myself enough credit for simply being human and imperfect. It's as if I've fooled myself into thinking I should be very hard on myself, for things that aren't even my fault. It's been the cause of a lot of my pains and heartbreaks, and I should note it's gotten in the way of some relationships as well. Wherever I go, I carry the brunt of all my regrets and I can never seem to let go of them.

I wonder how I should stop feeling sorry for being me. Where do I start? How do I give myself a healthy dose of self-appreciation and banish this masochistic ghost forever?

I'm open to suggestions.

Thursday, June 03, 2004

I've been getting better at badminton, I guess. In my recent games, I've felt more and more confident of myself and the moves I perform, despite not having properly trained for quite a while now. Experience on the court counts a lot, I suppose.

This Tuesday I got to play twice, and I won twice. Today I played thrice, won twice and lost once. My track record's getting better. I admit I still have to test my mettle against many more opponents better than I am, but this is a good start.

While I'm on the subject, I managed to improve my footwork a little bit too. No longer do my shoes have to experience being dragged by their sides when I lunge to return a shot. That means my Adidas Stratos 3s can last longer looking as dapper and as white as they are.

I've gotten pretty lonely the past couple weeks. My schedule just sucks. I got way too much free time. I'm actually applying for membership under the Student Council, preferably under Mela's office. It'll look good on my resume and it'll take care of some of that stupid free time too.

It also didn't help that I haven't been able to talk with Cher for what seems like forever. I finally got to talk to her again last night...and it felt so great hearing her voice again. I guess I'm taking the business of missing her too seriously, but she's my friend and I really do consider her special.

Amishu always, fwend. *HUGS*

Yaya Cora's mother died yesterday. :(

It's disappointing how her relatives seem to have every reason in the world NOT to take care of her ailing mother. Yaya Cora's left to take the brunt of paying for her medication.

The only relief I can think of for her is that she won't bleed as much of her much-needed money anymore.

Rest in peace.

I decided to get an application form for the college yearbook. If all goes well I'll get it by July 2006, half a year before I end my stay in DLSU.

Damn...this is probably the biggest indicator that my time in college is almost over. In five terms, God willing, I'll probably graduate. What have I done with all the time I'm here? Not too much I'm afraid. My resume won't be an org-seeker's wet dream, that's for sure.

I guess maybe I should make up for the time I wasted. I've been mulling over joining the badminton team lately. I even got the cellphone numbers of the two coaches and asked them when they're having tryouts.

I know I'm still a ways from being varsity-player material, but hey, there's no shame in trying right? I'm proud that I get to play with pretty good players 80% of the time.