Category Archives: Familia Poets

When I hate to be right

Eons ago, I hated it when someone would tell me, “I told you so” because that meant I was wrong, and I hated to be wrong. That was how stubborn and proud I was. I still have remnants of those stubbornness and pride. Medyo nagmellow na nga lang. Pero meron pa rin. Gabungkos pa.

Inaamin ko, hay naku, ang yabang ko kaya bata pa lang ako. My thoughts when I was barely even kindergarten was of superiority. Mas magaling ako sa mga kalaro ko. Mas mabilis akong tumakbo sa kanila sa harangang taga. Mas tago ang pwesto ko sa taguan. Mas marami akong bahay sa piko. Mas marami akong mahuhusay na pato sa teks. At pag natatalo ako, o tinutukso ako, naiinis ako agad. In fact, may isa akong pinsan na tinukso ako, parang “manok” o “ulikba” yata, ayun, hinabol ko at binigyan ng right hook. Umiyak! Taas ng pamewang ko nun. Pakiramdam ko, lalaki ako. Kala mo ha! Pero natakot ako nung tumakbo siya na takip-takip yung bibig na may umaagos na dugo. Takbo din ako pauwi. Baka magsumbong. Masisinturon ako tiyak ng ama ko.

Pero di nagsumbong. Di ko alam kung bakit.

And then I started kindergarten. Ay, etsa pwera ako. May mga kaklase akong hindi ko maintindihan ang salita. Nag-iingles. E hindi naman kami kinakausap ng ingles sa bahay. Ang alam ko lang sagutin, “What’s your name?” at “How old are you?” kasi siguro, noong panahon na yon, yun na yun. Ingles na yun. Matalino na ang bata pag nasagot yun. Kinder pa lang, sa harap ng buong klase, naramdaman ko ang inferiority complex. First day ng klase, may tinanong yung titser ko, di ako sumagot kasi hindi ko naintindihan. Nakipagtitigan lang ako. Pakiramdam ko nadismaya siya.

Saka Tagalog talaga kami sa bahay noon. Walang kiyemeng tonong Bulacan. Naalala ko nga, pag pinapagalitan ako ni madir, lagi niyang sinasabi, “Napakalikot na kristyano ka!” At naaalala ko rin, minsan, hindi ko talaga natiis, nagtanong ako, “Inang, ano ba yung kristyano?”

Sa murang edad din na 6, hindi ko alam paano ihahandle yung pakiramdam ng pagiging outcast. Naalala ko, PE, yung titser namin, sabi, “Boys, choose your partners.” Napansin ko na lang, ako yung naiwang walang kapartner o hindi pinili, pero ang inaalo ng titser ko ay yung kaklase kong nagtatantrum kasi hindi niya napili yung gusto niyang partner. At yung isa naman, ayaw pakawalan yung pinili niya. Gusto kong sumigaw, “Andito ako, o! Piliin nyo ko, o!” Pero super timid nga ako nun. Tapos ayun, nadagdagan pa nung alienated feeling na sa PE. Kaya hindi ako excited pumasok noon sa school. Mas gusto ko pang maglaro, kahit tirik na tirik ang katanghaliang araw. Tutal ulikba naman ako.

Pero sa Grade 1, bumilis na akong magbasa. Ah, sobra naman akong naging voracious reader. I devoured all my books. Nung nabasa ko na lahat ng libro ko, I turned to komiks. Naging tambay ako ng komiks stand. That time, hindi yabang pag sumasagot akong alam ko na yung ituturo ng titser kasi nabasa ko na yung mga libro ko kaya ako nagbabasa ng komiks. Naiinis ako nun pag wala akong binabasa.

At nahumaling akong magsulat. Nagsimula sa diary. May crush kasi ako nung Grade 2. Then I turned to poems. Dinala ko sa tula yung ibang emosyon ko. Pag naiinip ako sa lessons, nagiiscribble ako ng rhymes. Pag naiinis, nakatula pa rin.

Nang magkaroon kami ng theme writing, lagi akong nake-carried away kumbaga. Yung ibang mga kaklase ko, nilalakihan yung sulat para mapuno yung isang page. Ako, kulang ang isang page.

Pero ngayon, as much as possible, I would opt to keep my mouth shut. If I need to say something, I want to be succint, straight to the point. Pag hindi ko alam, hindi ko alam. Tipong hintayin mo, aalamin ko. Sometimes, I would be cryptic. Although sa kwentuhan, ah, patagalan tayo. (Mahaba na ba tong kwento ko?)

And there would be times when regardless of good intentions, nakakapagprangka, I would be misunderstood. During those times, I would only explain myself once and simply listen all throughout. Nasanay siguro ako sa ganoon kasi ang ama ko, nabansagang “bakal”. Walang makakabali ng opinyon nya. Wala kang panalo. Hahaba lang ang diskusyong paulit-ulit hanggang mapaos ka na. Sarado daw ang isip. Pero napatunayan kong hindi. Matagal lang magsink-in sa kanya.

Baka kako ganoon din si Pang. BS Aquino III. Baka, this time, makinig siya sa sentiment ng mga pinaglilingkuran niya.

The open letter I wrote to him yesterday morning was one of those sentiments. And this morning, as I catch up with the news and events, I felt anguished. Wala pa naman akong outlet. Kaya heto, blog naman.

Sakto din, nasa chat si utol. “Don’t burden yourself,” sabi niya. “Wala naman talagang maaasahan kay Pnoy… Manhid… Ganyan din nangyari sa Hacienda Luisita” at sabay singit sa pagendorso sa kanyang presidential candidate. Halakhak to the max. Naibsan kahit paano ang sentimyento ko.

Pero ganun pa rin pagkatapos maubos ng tawa, sa huli, naisip ko, tama pala ko, este yung hula.

Kasalanan ng mga militantent grupo, kasalanan ng mga taong nagbibigay boses at sumusuporta sa dinaranas ng mga apektadong magsasaka. Kasalanan na ng marami pang iba, pero hindi ng gubyerno. Walang kasalanan ang gubyerno. Walang kasalanan ang kapulisan. Katunayan nito ang natanggap nilang medalya dahil nasugatan sila sa engkwentro nila laban sa mga kriminal na rallyista.

Tama nga ba ang hula? Hindi papanig ang Pang. BS Aquino III sa mga magsasaka. If it was the right side for him to take, then I can’t blame and I am grateful that there are those who take the left.

Advertisements

The Wake Up Call

I’m in my new corner. Somewhere on the 23rd floor. Near the window. Very very near the window. I can see other buildings (and other windows, at that) from where I’m sitting. New cubicle, but old faces.  Old smiling ones.

Daddy Elms once joked, “What will you do if you see an airplane about to come crashing through the window?”

I told him, “Paparahin ko, Daddy.” Others interjected with different answers but none came close to his supposedly correct one. We should “Turn off the remote!”, he said.

It seems that I keep moving to places, too — locational changes. Two months back, we have to move out of  5437 (or was it 5947?) to be closer to work. Then, a month after, work called for transfer from M2 to DS. Ahhhh! What timing!

And as October goes, November comes. The late rainy season has coincided with the incoming December breeze. So hard to wake up with the cool wind tightly hugging every pore in my body. I always wish I could sleep longer… Just like last Sunday when everyone’s spending the holiday in the “hacienda”.

I was still recharging from my night shift from work and was on the bed when the Buen Family arrived. In short, I was dead to the world then. I just realized that they’d finally come because my nephews, Yno (aged 7) and Deen (aged 5), came into my room and told me that they brought pizza. Yno even placed a plate of pizza on my hand (which I told Yno to place it back on the box and save me another slice too… which, well, unfortunately gone “missing” when I woke up). I lazily sat up from bed and hugged them both, as customary whenever I meet them.

I told the boys that I just got home from work and would need to sleep. And they said, “Ok, Tita Jaja!”

By dinnertime, Yno was waking me up again. He said, I should get up or else everyone would be finished with their meals. I told Yno, my head hurts and that I need 30-minute more of sleep. He then placed his hand on top of my unruly bun of hair while insisting that I really should get up and join the rest for dinner. He was so makulit! He kept telling me, it’s lonely taking meals alone, that I won’t be able to join EVERYBODY if I don’t wake up ASAP, that I really need to EAT! I didn’t know how long Yno was trying to wake me up, until finally, he said, “Tita Jaja, I know! You can wake up now and then after eating, you can go back to sleep!”. That revved me up, and so I woke up.

The thing was, everyone’s done with their dinner.

And no, I didn’t get back to bed after eating. It was movietime, and it was Ditseng Ellen’s birthday salubong, too! But I really couldn’t keep my eyes open. They were begging me to go back to sleep! So I went to bed ahead of everyone else, again, which made me missed the lambanog shots. Nonetheless,  I’s too “drunk” from lack of sleep. One shot would instantly punch me out anyway. 😀

Let there be light!

Popsy had to remind me that i was in darkness, literally.

since i am without the ever dependable laptop that i got used to having for almost three years, i am back to the pen-and-paper scribbling. i started drafting a friend’s wedding program flow at noon right after getting the confirmation that i’ll be doing it.

nonetheless, it seemed that my brain was still wired to a computer network and in frantic freeze! i couldn’t get it to work! there i was, absentmindedly doodling on my notebook anything that came to mind — a poem, a prayer, and about to start on drawing pretty little hearts (hahaha! yes, hearts!)…

that’s when Popsy came into the room and turned on the lights. he said, “ba’t hindi ka nag-iilaw?”

after giving dad my sweetest smile and thanks, i couldn’t stop laughing at myself. how come i didn’t even notice that it was already dusk?

i really was warped, and saved by the light… and i believe it’s a good thing. 🙂

Buti pa ulan, malakas… ako, hindi.

Iba pala yung level ng stress ‘pag bigla kang nagkasakit at alam mong may red alert (mas red lang ng kaunti sa red alert sa opis).

Last Wednesday, June 3, sobrang excited ako non. After 5 looooonnngg months, uuwi na rin kasi si Mumsy at ang mga Buentots. Actually, dapat June 2 pa sila dumating (at ako naman, excited siyempre) kaso hindi sila naka-board ng flight due to some issues. Niweiz, June 3, delayed pa rin yung flight nila ng almost 2 hours kaya June 4 ng madaling araw, alas dos ng umaga na sila nakapag-checkout.

Galing pala sila ng Virginia, US. Healthy naman ang dating nila. Rosy pink cheeks nga si Mumsy at superhyperactive din sila Yno at Deen.

Kaya alam ko na hindi swine flu yung nagumpisang lagnat ko noong Friday (at okay na ang pangamoy ko ngayon… hehe… di pa ko naliligo, obvious to myself). Giniginaw lang naman ako noon, at may konting chill. At ayon sa slides na inemail sa akin ni KJ, kasama sa symptoms yung stuffy nose (negative), cough (negative) at shortness of breathing (nyeta, e nung binabasa ko yung slide, hinihingal ako. sira kasi elevator sa building namin at kakapanik ko lang! sa 5/F kaya kami… waah!).

So wala akong swine flu. Ang culprit, ako din!

Sobrang natuwa kasi ako sa ulan these past few days. Haay, naiinggit kasi ako dun sa mga batang naglalaro at nagtatampisaw sa ulan. Kaya sumisimple lang ako. Lakad takbo ako pag umuulan. Every chance I get. Hehehe.

Kaya heto, recuperating.

Pero feeling ko, pwede na kong maligo.

Under the shower. Imaginin ko na lang na ulan.

Smiles of a Tot

My Ay! Phone!‘s photo repository is full of tots. Luv kids. Can’t blame me. They’re so… naturally kids — honestly without sugar coating. WYSIWYG. Even with tantrums! At least you have an idea why their into a fit.

But most often, kids are sure fun to be with.

I have these two pics taken when I accompanied my nephew, Deen, to his Christmas Party last year. Deen is another tot, a 3-year old brilliance who can already read. In fact, he was the one who read the opening prayer before their party began.

As a toting Tita, since his parents where both indisposed at that time (sis was in US and bro-in-law was on an urgent business call) I asked Deen to pose for a souvenir picture.

Like a photo pro, I said, “Ok Deen, give me your brightest smile… 1, 2, 3, Smile!”

Deen's Smile #1

Deen's Smile #1

Cutie right? This pix is my screensaver. A real day brightener. That smile.

Anyway, I took another photo. This time, I want to see Deen’s eyes smiling too. So I simply instructed him not to close his eyes when he smiles. I even showed him how to do it. And this was how he smiled…

Deen's Smile #2

Deen's Smile #2

This forced smile of Deen made me laugh really hard! Oh kids!

%d bloggers like this: