Thursday, December 31, 2009

Because We Live In The Stone Age

The year was marked by profound changes. It began with uncertainty over my choice of career. It was followed by the defense of the heart. By fending off nightmarish remnants of a downtrodden love affair, I succeeded in keeping myself away from taking new romantic interests seriously. Deciding to quit the academic pursuit in exchange for creative liberation had allowed me to soul search my own artistry. Then as I settled to a state of life mellowing to a standstill, a series of twists and turns had placed me toward the path of ascension.

I was promoted to become a team leader reliever. Standing tall among colleagues I've once seen as equals, I began to harbor thoughts of mortality. My leadership was time-bound. I know that when the one who left comes back, the power I enjoy must be surrendered. It was foresight that made me use such power sparingly and I was seen as someone modest. I invoked it only when necessary. So when the day of judgment finally came, I was thrilled to take my former life back. But just when things are beginning to return to its old order, there I was promoted as a permanent poster boy of the company to the client.

Right at the home front, funds were dwindling. Its main source - the Sikyu Agency - finally ran out of ammunition just when I'm about to learn to accept that help will never come. Its loss will spell hardship and nobody dared speak of tomorrow. Not even the utol who's entrenched in her hammer and sickle crusade never gave a damn. We have given up and have accepted that she will never atone for her errors. There was nothing wrong with ideas to begin with - unless you're stirring the pot of revolution by shoving your beliefs on everyone's throats. Hers was a calling I could not interfere. The last time she turned down an intervention to find a means of living, I resolved to let her figure out her own fate.

Months fell like leaves of an old tree. Dipping steadily towards the ground, its gentle descent allowed for reflection. I was harvesting days like it was about to be ravaged by storms. There was no room for missteps so I had to face it with a one-track mind. Routines were placed so I would remain focused. Everything became a choreographed obligation. Monotony was life and the only real freedom I enjoyed was with the company of good souls on a booze-full Saturday night.

But time was catching up. Too much fears of tomorrow and too much regrets over the past made me forget the joys of living the present. People around are turning back to pick up the things they left in their childhood, while I, of all the people slipped in and out of contemplation just to chart the direction I would take.

To find my place in life.

The passage took lots of U-turns and soon I grew frustrated going around in circles. December was the most difficult for I was confronted by the accomplishments of those I have met. Despite the huge jumps in my career, my passionate struggle against all forms of attachment, and for steering the home front away from a total economic collapse, it still felt like never achieving anything at all.

And so in secret I saw the hopelessness of dreaming.
I thought I was sick and was counting days before my body reveals its imminent breakdown.
Confidence was corrupted and for days I was withdrawn and unfocused to see things through.
And the heart of matter was, I started comparing my earnings.

And I knew I was living less than I deserve.

Self pity would have been the theme of my year-ender. But it is the refusal to bow down to the pervading staleness that kept me from losing my core. Realizing that my strength lies with the obsession of accomplishing tasks only the boldest would attempt conquest, I learned that the fire remains.



I was asked to report for work two days ago. New agents were hired for my ever-demanding account and immediate training was needed. Coming out of a holiday hibernation, I showed up without any protestations. Vacation was cut short, but there is work to be done. On the second day of training, I had to go undertime. Trading off a 4 am shift the next day was the only reason I was allowed to leave. I learned that same afternoon I would be the Bestman in my friend's wedding. No wonder, he sent slacks and a Barong Tagalog the night before. It was already late and the reception hasn't started. I promised to show up at a friend's party in the south that same evening. I had to leave. From Tandang Sora to Dasmarinas in Cavite, I covered in two hours on a bus. I was lucky to catch the last trip in Cubao. Drained and with no energy to spare. I was there to welcome my friend's birthday with his lover and another friend. It was already 2 the next morning when we decided to separate ways. Returning to Manila was no easy feat. I had to take a jeep from the highlands going back to the plains. From the sleepless crossroads of Baclaran, a bus that will take me to Ortigas waited. There I was, able to steal an hour's nap before the solo training performance before sunrise.

The training went well and my inspired delivery covered all concepts that must be explained. Going home to finally rest, I was up again before evening. I had to prepare for the last reunion before the start of a new year. In that party, in the company of the first non-straight friends I found on the Internet, I found the courage to speak. To speak to the people I seldom acknowledge and complement the way I'm learning to complement the people I walk with at work. I sang songs I would never have the courage to sing in other parties, but who cares if my voice fails me. At least I heard myself sing.

And yeah, I learned that I'm not an RnB or a Boyband or a Diva person in front of the microphone. I am Rob Thomas and the Speaks combined.

The night wore on and I was having fun at the KTV Party. Friends were surprised I stayed long in their company when I used to leave their gatherings at way past midnight. Who would have thought I would accomplish so much in just two days: The boldness to dream, the boldness to reach out, the boldness to try new things and the boldness to set things as words have promised, would actually become the prelude for the coming year.

And just when I was having this itch to tell the cab driver to head straight towards my dancing grounds in Malate.

"Manong, Santa Mesa na lang tayo."

I chose to go home.


Despite the depressive thoughts of embracing the new year broken, uncertain and searching, I found enough courage to cross the last hours of 2009 confident that tomorrow will not be as bad as I thought it would.

Much as I would like to believe in new beginnings, I prefer to keep walking.

Happy New Year... everyone!


thecurioscat said...

Happy New Year! What a year 2009 fo you. I'm sure 2010 will be so much better

engel said...

what's good about new years is that somehow we have another clean slate.

Happy New Year Joms!!!

ika said...

happy new year joms.

I'm not sure if I should wish you out of the monotony you are subconsciously complaining about, but yeah, cheers to an amazing 2010!


the fourth paragraph was written beautifully. so many delicious words. no mixed metaphors anywhere. galing.

Eternal Wanderer... said...

It is always good to spend the new hear at home where the heart is :)

happy new year, mugen :)

lee said...

continuing to walk is ok, just as long as you stop for a while and take a breather :)

have a happy new year!!!

anteros' dominion said...

wishing you more love, happiness, good health and prosperity

in times when you feel like giving up

you know who to call...

Him up there

and when you need someone to cheer you up

you know the clown in me will be very happy serve his master

god bless

hope to be with you soon

Darc Diarist said...

yey for courage! keep faith. the new year promises great things. and you're too gracious not to be blessed. :)

blagadag said...

yeah. you survived 2009 beautifully. and i know, you will rule 2010. just keep your feet on the ground, bebeh. continue harvesting the happy days ahead as the new leaves sprout to colored dreams. have a happy one.

john stanley said...

2010 is here. whatever happened in 2009 is now but a part of our history we look back upon to guide us as we chart our new course.

you fought great battles in 2009. look forward to this year as it can only get better, joms. i know it will.

happy new year to you, my friend.

Yj said...

happy new year Joms..... :)

f. jordan said...

Just remember to decide wisely. Weigh everything well and you'll get a lighter load on your shoulders.

Merry new year!

Anonymous said...

happy new year knoxxbro!

Anonymous said...

around dec, i tried to access your blog. wala. akala ko, evacuation uli. last time na nagvisit naman ako, i wanted to post a comment, pero dinisable mo yata. hehe. so i guess this is the time to say my greetings in one. ^_^

1. belated christmas

2. happy new year

3. i miss you, bro, hehe..

keep safe! thanks for dropping by.

Padsiefoot said...

"tomorrow will not be as bad as I thought it would."

- Opkors! I should know, and you should know wht I should know.

Ano daw?

Padsiefoot said...


Andrei said...

yes. mortality. you deserve it.

have a nice day. keep on rocking my day through your writings.


thank was an honor having you among us