December 31, 2011

New Year’s Resolutions

I’ve wanted to start 2012 with a clean conscience. I’ve apologized and made up with my high school friends who had conflicts with me. I’ve sent out a letter of gratitude to a friend of mine online who I haven’t spoken to for 2-3 years now. That one wasn’t an apology since I’ve stated that in the letter. It was a letter of gratitude, saying that despite the conflict that she and I had 2 years ago, without her as my friend, I wouldn’t be where I am today with my friends and my accomplishments. I even plan on personally apologizing to a friend of mine (or ex-friend of mine, since she’s blocked me on Facebook and hates my talkativeness) on January 3, the resumption of class.

New Year’s resolutions are overrated nowadays since they’re usually forgotten or broken after a week or so. So, attempting to join in on this clichéd practice, I’ve come up with a few resolutions. I’ve made empty promises before and these could be empty as well, depending on the situations.

First, I would focus on my friends more than I do with searching for a love life that’smost likely never going to arrive anyway. Back in 2011, I was focused on two girls that I had a huge crush on. For 2012, I want to focus on my friends and see if they’re worth having in the future. I’m grateful for the close friends that I have.

Second, I’ll use public transportation. I’ve already fired my driver just so I could do this. I’ll rely on jeeps and taxis from now on until I can actually get driving lessons. Public transportation is a little unsafe because with all the girls I’ve known and been mean to, I might get run over sooner or later.

Third, I would be a little nicer. This one is hard since being mean has been associated with me for the past year or more (Blame 10 years of watching Chandler Bing on Friends). However, I’ve noticed that I tend to be so bad that people get offended without even my realizing it. For Twitter, just so people I joke with would know that I’m still joking with them, I include #Mean with those tweets and when I’m being sincere, I add #NotMean. This is because people don’t believe me when I’m being nice anymore, as if the line between sarcasm and sincerity has been blurred and it’s all my fault.

And fourth, I would finish a short story that’s actually readable and original. Fan fiction doesn’t count despite my efforts to work on my old Final Fantasy VII story “Our Solemn Hour”. I want to write something that I could actually publish and be proud of. The problem is that it’s hard to be original and no matter what idea you have and think that’s original, someone out there has done it even better. So I what I tend to do when I write my stories is that I take ideas from several other movies, comics or TV shows and tweak them to the point that they might seem original. As legendary wrestling personality Jim Cornette says, “If you steal from one person, it’s plagiarism. If you steam from many, it’s research. “ I’m a horrible writer, I know.

December 21, 2011

Ralphisms – The Playbook

It’s been witnessed by my friends that I possess a certain book written by Barney Stinson from How I Met Your Mother – a certain book entitled “The Playbook”. It’s a collection of what the character Barney Stinson used on women to trick them into having sex with him. It’s a hilarious book actually

Now, in reality, I just bought the book for a laugh but somehow, in my sick twisted sense of humor, I’ve made people believe that I will actually use this book to have sex (even though that’s not the intention of the book, if taken seriously).

However, there was one trick in that book that I wanted to use called “The Fall in Love”. Google it, it’s on Google Books actually. I was nearly done with the play but rather than end it with sex, I wanted to end it with a relationship (Call me desperate). The problem is that the girl I liked was taken. Plus, she didn’t understand the Playbook (probably because it’s in English. HAHA! Mean).

The funny thing was that I actually used one of the plays on Valentine’s Day of 2011. The “He’s Not Coming” although I just used it for fun. Lover’s Lane in UST is a great place to find lonely girls you could use the “He’s Not Coming” on (Just try not to have a girl cry on your shoulder like one girl did. She got tears on my jacket, damn it).

Anyway, I only keep this book here just to make the façade of my being awesome a little closer to Barney Stinson’s. This is the reason that people consider me polarizing – they either get my act or they really think that I’m serious (which makes them stupider, if you think about it). 

December 18, 2011

Ralphisms – “I Think I’m In Love With Her”

This one is one of my favorites because it’s an exaggerated version of me in my first year of college. The origin of the “I think I’m in love with her” is from the first episode of How I Met Your Mother where Ted Mosby says “I think I’m in love with you” on the first date and basically ruins his chances with Robin, the girl he was dating. And during my first year, I can remember being desperately infatuated with a few girls (okay, a lot of girls). So basically, every time I say this, it’s a parody myself and my hopeless romantic ways from first year college.

Every time I see a cute girl with my friends. I’d say something along the lines of “Hey, look at that girl. She looks really cute—I think I’m in love with her…” Then they’d proceed to laugh or punch me in the arm. The way I say “I think I’m in love with her” is in the same tone as Ted Mosby said it, except my tone is obviously exaggerated.

It even works well with just one friend. When a cute friend of mine looks great, I say “Hey (insert girl’s name here), you look so cute—I think I’m in love with you.” That’s when they laugh.

It’s not even supposed to be taken seriously (as with the rest of my “Ralphisms”) but if somehow, a girl took this one too seriously, I’ll be prepared to either laugh at their gullibility or just run away because oh dear god, that girl is a more desperate hopeless romantic than I am.

However, the only caution to this is that you never (and I repeat, NEVER) say this to a girl you like because if you do, she’d realize that you’ll never be able to say it to her seriously. With something as serious as the word “love” and the rising assumptions of other hopeless romantics, you shouldn’t take any chances. That’s why you should only say this to friends that would only remain as friends. If you say this to the girl you like and she doesn’t get that it’s a joke, consider your chances killed. (And I'll have you know, I've never said this to a girl I like so I'm not speaking from experience here.)

Valentine’s Day Expectations

This coming February 14 is alternatively called “Single Awareness Day” because as the couples show their affections for each other, we single people are made aware of just how single and romantically unlucky we are.

Now being a hopeless romantic (wow, that word’s probably losing its meaning with how many times I’m using it), I’ve planned out Valentine’s Day since May of 2011. Seriously, I did but it was for another girl and that’s in the past.

Mediartrix, a wonderful theatre organization in UST, offers this awesome promo where they would serenade the person you like and would give them a rose as well. That romantic gesture costs only 100 Pesos at least. Although I’ve been told that other desperate people pay to have themselves serenaded and pretend that it’s from an anonymous admirer (Jesus H. Christ, even I wouldn’t stoop that low).

I’m going to pay the organization to serenade a girl I like. The song? “Teenage Dream” by Katy Perry except it’ll be the cover version done by Boyce Avenue, which is actually sweet and better for a guy to use.

Perhaps one of the serenading people could knock on her classroom and asked her to come out. When she does, they sing the song and it’ll be totally romantic. I’ll then come out from the corner and say “‘Hopeless romantic meets beautiful girl’ would make a great short story, wouldn’t it? I know things are still a little awkward between us but I hope this clears it. Happy Valentine’s day.”

Okay, maybe it’s a little pretentious for me or a little too dramatic but hey, it’s just a first draft. And it’s just my expectations. Eventually, reality will come in and kick my ass for expecting too much or being too dramatic. Or maybe, instead of reality, that girl would kick my ass herself since she could actually beat the living hell out me in a fury of feminine rage and high heels.

The Grand Romantic Gesture

We’ve all seen it in the movies. The guy does something extraordinary for the love interest just so he can show that he loves her. Given that the guy’s desperately in love with her, he wouldn’t mind getting a cup of coffee some time (okay, I paraphrased that line from Friends). Now, flowers are cliché. Giving her chocolates is too common. Saying “I love you” is not as good since actions speak louder than words. The most exaggerated way to show that the guy loves the girl is by doing some grand romantic gesture.

It could be simple. From the first season of the show Friends, Ross gave Rachel an expensive pin that looked like what her grandmother had. Not really “simple” but it’s the simplest compared to the others.

Now, most grand romantic gestures would be excessive and somehow impossible. Ted, in the first season of How I Met Your Mother, actually made it rain for his love interest Robin. Okay, maybe you don’t have to defy the laws of physics because that’s a little hard but still, the grand romantic gesture is something that seals the deal in a relationship. In the movie Big Fish, the protagonist (I forgot his name) actually called five different states to have a whole park planted with his love interest’s favorite flower, viewable outside her window. It’s a romantic scene albeit really, really expensive.

In my stay in UST, I’ve encountered dozens of hopeless romantics. The difference between us is that they don’t bitch as much as I do about having a significant other (and I bitch about it a lot). Personally, I’ve always wanted to do some grand romantic gesture sooner or later for a girl I like. Plus, I even planned it but I’ll talk about that later. If I like a girl enough to make a grand romantic gesture in public for her, I’d make it simple yet effective.  Although I assume several people have thought I made a grand romantic gesture since I gave a girl a plush pink puppy last December 15 (I’m only assuming that since I gave it to her in front of her entire section) but more on that later.

In actuality, doing a grand romantic gesture is a risk. Timing is always the key. Do the gesture in public in a bad time and you’ve just made a total idiot of yourself. However, with the right timing, nothing could be sweeter. What a great moment to remember, right?

December 15, 2011

2011 in review

That was the year I had to take summer classes. It was the year I had major crush on a girl from sociology. The year I got slapped the first time. The year I lost out to being Mr. Literature. The year I adapted Barney Stinson's traits into my life. The year I tried to be romantic and did things for girls that I like.

And damn it if it wasn't the best year of my life!

December 14, 2011

The Mean Factor

The current adjective being used to describe me is “mean”. I get that from my friends in my literature course, my professors in my literature course, the officials in the organization I’m in, and even the girls I’ve had crushes on so it’s not really odd for people to call me mean.

I could remember one of the meanest times I had was in the TomasinoWeb organization room when I totally unleashed joke after joke to my org-mate named Alyssa (pronounced “Eliza” apparently). And for some reason, her reactions are totally hilarious and just add fuel to the fire. It’s really awesome when she whines like a cute little girl (only not cute. HAHA! I’m kidding). It’s actually simple to be mean to her. When she’s with her friends, I could simply say “Hi girls. …Alyssa”, which really makes her seem like a new gender. It’s hilarious and then she calls me mean for some reason (stating the obvious, really). My god, looking back at that paragraph, I actually do sound mean. Oh well.

It’s alright to be mean as long as you’re hilarious in doing it. Well, not really alright, since you’re being a bad guy and all. But still, being mean is just throwing jokes at someone as if you’re like being friendly with them. It’s a form of communication mixed with humor at the expense of your friend and even yourself. Why? ‘Cause it’s fun!

My big tool for pulling off this meanness act is sarcasm. People who can’t detect sarcasm are the ones whose minds are on a dial-up connection while everyone else is on DSL. The problem is not your jokes but rather the people you’re directing them to. A good joke is only good by the reaction it gets. It’s like this: If a joke is told and no one is there to laugh at it, is it funny?

Use sarcasm when it’s appropriate and on a person who would actually understand that you’re being sarcastic. An example is how I made my friend Miho Octobergloom (that’s her nickname) laugh a few months ago. Since she was an exemplary writer and a member of the Thomasian Writers Guild or TWG (“TweeGee” as it’s pronounced), I would often joke with her and scoff “Oh look, Tweegee girl’s here. Ugh! I gotta get out of here!” But for all intents and purposes, I did that to make her laugh and thankfully, she did. Had she not understood the joking sarcasm, she would have been angry and hit me with a chair or something.

Sarcasm is a hard thing to master because you need to time it. It should only be used at the right time with the right audience who you know would actually get your sarcastic jokes. Your classmate makes a joke? A good time to use sarcasm. Your classmate opens up to you seriously? Bad time to be sarcastic. At a funeral? Really bad time. Being held up by a mugger? Really, really bad time. (Dude, why would you be sarcastic when you’re being held up?! That’s just stupid, man!)

If you master sarcasm or at least good with it and know how to use it, you’ll be ultimately mean. All you need now is the material or the fuel to add to your flaming desire to mock somebody.

December 13, 2011

Ralphisms – To “Ralph” somebody

Ralph (v.) – to confess your feelings to someone you like but too soon and not in person.
Used in a sentence: "He just Ralphed her through Facebook! Jeez!"

Now this is something that isn’t supposed to be proud of nor should it be used at all because if you Ralph someone (yes, it’s a verb now created by me), it means you’re a hopeless romantic who wants to be loved but the girl you like isn’t feeling the same thing or the timing is wrong. Then usually, it’s done through text or through a social media site.

There are two parts on how to Ralph someone. First, there’s “too soon”.

I can surely say this because I’m an expert of doing things “too soon”. I’ve written papers on “too soon”. I’ve posted blogs about “too soon”. Heck, I even gave a talk about “too soon” (only not really, I just wanted to sound like Dustin Hoffman in Stranger than Fiction). “Too soon” is when you ignore timing and do whatever the hopeless romantic you see in the movies does. It usually ends in disaster. For example, Ted Mosby in the first episode of How I Met Your Mother said “I think I’m in love with you” to a girl he just gone out with in one date. That’s “too soon”. At least it was done in person, which meant Ted had the guts to say it and face the reaction.

The second part of Ralphing someone is to not do it in person.

Now saying “I love you” in the first date is popularly called Mosby-ing someone. To Ralph someone, you have to do it through non-personal means. For example, you confess your infatuation on a girl through text. I mean, come on! Who does that?! (*Ahem*) I mean, at least have the guts to say it in person! (Yeah Ralph from July 2011, have the guts!) No one says they like someone unless it’s the only form of communication they have, like the girl is on the other side of the world or something. Say what you have to say in person and face the consequences. Don’t text “I lied. When I said I have a crush on other girls, that was a lie and I’m sorry. There are no other girls. Only you.” (Wow, where did that come from?) Say it in person! It sounds more personal that way.

Basically, to Ralph someone is to text someone you like them when you know that it’s not the perfect time to say it or you two just aren’t on that level yet. Never, ever Ralph someone.

December 11, 2011

Ralphisms – “So, how’s the weather?”

Now, before we get to why the title is like that, I’ll address this. This is gonna be some sort of series just so people can understand my jokes and see what’s actually intended. This is something like an explanation of my jokes and how they can be considered as mean. And maybe even a playbook for you mean people out there looking for new mean things to do to others.

This is one of my favorite mean things to do. This is really simple but it involves at least three people in the conversation. Here’s how it goes. Three of you must be in a conversation and after your friend finishes his or her long sentence, take a moment of silence and ask your other friend “So, how’s the weather?” Here’s a demo.

Karina: (Finishes story about a band or something)
(Silence)
Ralph: …So, Jonah, how’s the weather?
Karina: MEAN!

Now how is that mean? Simple! By asking “Jonah” or the second friend in the conversation about the weather, it would imply that you didn’t give a damn about what “Karina” or the first friend said in the conversation, no matter how insightful it was. You would rather talk about something as dull as the weather, of all things.

Try it out and prepared to be punched in the arm.

December 4, 2011

Growl A Bit More, Tiger Radio

When Tiger Radio is on the air and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?

UST, my current college, actually has a studio in the library where they broadcast several programs for TV and radio. Of course I respect them for their efforts but I do have some several nuances (or “difference in opinion” in simpler terms). I want them to succeed but it’s like no one even watches their shows at all.

The problem is that they only broadcast around UST and on the internet. I know broadcasting on the internet is good but there's a problem: the audience that they're appealing to is having class during those times or basically not caring since they seem to have better things to do. So basically, it's like that earlier question: When Tiger Radio is on the air and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?

I have other thoughts that might help them. Of course this is just a guy who watches too much pro wrestling so what do I know, right? I’m just thinking like an amateur wrestling booker here so hey, you guys don’t have to take my suggestions since I don’t know what the staff does or how hard does it take for new ideas to go through.

I like how the DJs are lively. The guests, however, not so much. I find it entertaining that the DJs are the lively ones while the guests sound like lifeless entities. The guests should be just as lively, if not livelier, than the DJs themselves. I want to listen to someone worth listening to and I want to be entertained (I’m just part of the latter – I’m entertaining but not worth listening to. HAHA). I don’t want to listen to someone who sounds more boring than the speech function on most PCs or shy as a little girl.

Also, I just wish they’d allow downloads or at least replays. Professional wrestling personality Jim Cornette has his podcast called “Who’s Slamming Who?” and it’s been downloaded for over one hundred thousand times already (Seriously). Not just because it’s very entertaining, but because people can catch up to whatever they’ve missed and enjoy the show. When someone says “Oh you wouldn’t believe what he said”, you could just go to the site and download it.

I wish they’d avoid being like the soap operas on TV where they don’t show replays and show episodes daily, so when you’ve missed an episode, you’re lost. The downloads don't even have to be on UST's servers. Megaupload or Mediafire works fine. This way, people can follow what you guys are doing by downloading previous episodes of the show.

So basically, just a few observations that I’ve had for months now (before apathy kicked in). To quote professional wrestling genius Paul Heyman, “You have to make the audience almost uncomfortable with the progression rate because you want them to be afraid to miss a single episode because otherwise, they might miss the spectacular growth of their favorite characters.”

I want those guys to succeed with their radio shows at a rate that people will feel guilty for missing out. Call me crazy.

November 13, 2011

Hopeless romantic? Just hopeless

For almost 2 years now, I've been a real hopeless romantic. Why? Well, I made a deal with myself in high school - that I'll find the girl of my dreams in college and have a future with her. I know it sounds really, really stupid but hopelessly romantic people are stupid when it comes to this kind of thing. 

Maybe it was from watching too many romance movies. Maybe it was the crazy yet constant thought that a girl might somehow genuinely like me, which is total shit after two years in college because that's never gonna happen in this lifetime. But in some sick, twisted, and stupid form of desire, I wanted to look for that certain girl. Maybe I could’ve gotten lucky (No I didn’t).

I’ll admit that I was jealous whenever I saw a couple holding hands or sharing a moment. I wanted that. I wanted to have a girl I could do those kinds of lovely things with. But after a few months, I was asked if I actually wanted someone or just the idea of being in love. That was quite a question. It took me quite some time to figure that out. I wasn’t like Sam Rothstein from the movie Casino – I couldn’t buy the affection of some pretty girl. I wasn’t like John Cusack’s character from Say Anything – I couldn’t play a girl’s favorite song from a blaring boom box outside her window. But I wanted to do that but not with a certain girl. I wanted to do those kinds of things with any girl that I was infatuated with. That confirmed it – in love with love.

Include the envy-inducing stories that my godfather always tells me whenever he visits. His stories were about the times he hung out with my dad and my uncles and all the girls that they’ve dated. This was something that I didn’t have. I didn’t have a close group of male friends because I just didn’t mix with them. They were culturally different, let’s leave it at that. And I didn’t have wingmen or a group of friends to help me out with girls so I had to do my search on my own.

At one point, I tried to go overboard and exaggerate. Maybe that was what the girls wanted. I’ve read books “written” by Barney Stinson from the show How I Met Your Mother, namely “The Bro Code” and “The Playbook” to see if this could actually help me out with my luck. Turns out, what works in fiction only works in fiction. I tried the suits (or jackets, rather), the charm (I still have it, except I’ve just gone mellow and low key), and the confidence (I’ve stopped that because it got redundant, let’s leave it at that) but in the end, they all didn’t work. Of course I was disappointed but looking back, why, how, and in what way did I think anything from “The Playbook” would work? Maybe “The Fall in Love” after trying it out on a classmate from geography class last May but that didn’t work out so well. That was my problem. I tried whatever worked in fiction and it’s fiction for a reason – because those kinds of things would never work in reality unless you were crazy (I am) or desperate (I was).

Sometimes, I wanted the opposite to happen. I wanted to be the one to be pursued by some girl who’s probably just as crazy and desperate as I was, if not even crazier. I wanted to see what it was like to be pursued. I wanted some cute girl to get giddy whenever I passed by her. I wanted some cute girl to obsess over me and try to spend time with me. And perhaps eventually, some cute girl will go to all the trouble – maybe she’ll have her friends help her out – and confess her feelings to me in a grand romantic gesture like cherry blossoms in the air with a song playing in the background. Basically I wanted to be the main love interest in a high school anime. Obviously, none of that ever happened and would never even have a possibility of happening with those details but I mainly wanted to have some cute girl actually like me.

Do I regret everything? The constant longing or whatever it actually was? The sick need to see a certain girl just to make the day complete? Basically, being crazy about a certain girl? Do I regret all of that? Of course not. The thought of what could happen is not worth it and it may hurt but why not take a risk? For all you know, that's your love story and it's waiting for you to turn the pages.

But I've stopped believing in that. I've stopped believing that my love story will ever begin. Yet I'm happy for everyone else who's in their own romantic quest and I wish them all the best but for me, I’m through with anything romantic. And this is the last time you’ll be hearing from me about this kind of thing. Am I a hopeless romantic? No. Just hopeless.

November 9, 2011

"Like this and I'll answer" challenge - For Denise Ann V.

Oh thank goodness someone else liked that status update. I thought I was done for the evening.
-----

• Name I call you: Denise and "moe girl". Okay, I haven't gotten around to calling you that last one but I'm planning on using it.
• How old you look: 16. And you act like you're a 13-year old fangirl. Haha!
• Rate 1-10: 9. In chibi form, 10.
• Are we close: Our social link rank is 6, according to my social links menu. D:
• Are you worth my time: Of course. You're few of the people in 1Lit that I actually like and worth spending time with. The rest can all go jump off a cliff.
• Would i talk to you: Yes, because that's what we do almost everyday unless we're being dubbed by awesome voice actors.
• Would i hug or kiss you: Hug, sure. Kiss? No, you have cooties! HAHA!
• Do i ♥ you: Only if you're chibi. Then I'd fawn over you.
• What are we: Social links. I need to max yours out but I don't know how. Maybe I'll get a cute shota doll for you or something.
• Do i like your profile picture: Yes. Unicorns~!
• Do i trust you: I trusted you and Camz with the sarcasm sign, does that count? HAHA!
• To be honest: I actually thought you were another boring literature student that seems quiet and all that regular introvert stuff. Turns out you're the exact opposite. Shows what I know about being a sociologist, right? HAHA!
• Have you ever made me laugh or smile: Yes. Lots of times. Especially when you're acting in chibi form.
• Have you ever made me mad: Nope. So far, no, so don't start now. HAHA! :P
• Should you put this as your status: Yes! DO EET!

"Like this and I'll answer" challenge - For Nicole C.

Maybe I'm enjoying this too much. I just love babbling on about my friends. Call me crazy.
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Like this and I'll answer:
• Name I call you: Nicole, "Anak", (former) "Favorite college daughter"
• How old you look: 17
• Rate 1-10: 10. See? I can compliment you~ :P
• Are we close: Yes. (College) Father-daughter relationship.
• Are you worth my time: Of course and always. :D
• Would i talk to you: Yes.
• Would i hug or kiss you: Hug, of course. Kiss? Eh. You have cooties. HAHAHA! Kidding.
• Do i ♥ you: Yes. ;)
• What are we: A college family.
• Do i like your profile picture: Yes, of course. I have to like it to be a good father. HAHA!
• Do i trust you: Of course. :)
• To be honest: Without this college father-daughter thing we have right now, I would not even be talking to you that much because we have nothing to talk about back then during first year.
• Have you ever made me laugh or smile: Yes. By laughing at "Love Hurts".
• Have you ever made me mad: A little. You made me cry in poetry class by making me listen to "Pakisabi Na Lang" by Aiza Seguerra. I hated you for a minute there. Haha!
• Should you put this as your status: Yes you should. Listen to your college father! :)

November 8, 2011

"Girl in the FX" By Ralph Corleone

I was in my stalker mode when I wrote this at 6:30 in the morning on the way to class. Hey, it's not like I actually knew that Engineering girl that I was writing about. I just felt like trying to be sympathetic or something close to that.

---

“Girl in the FX”

There you are, in the FX
sleeping, 6:40 in the morning
A girl from Engineering
your hair waving by the air conditioner,
Here I am in the confines of my car
looking at you, from a distance
A guy from Arts and Letters
used to the background,
You seem so close
sleeping near the window
The FX makes you shake
yet you remain unstirred
With no one to lean on,
you’re still in light slumber
but here I am, so far away
looking at you, from a distance
Perhaps I want to be the shoulder you can lean on
Perhaps I just thought you’re cute
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps
What am I saying?
And now the time has come to say goodbye
I notice you’re awake, finally
Stirred by the sudden pothole in the road
My car overtakes the FX
Your face fading away among the crowd of passengers
Never will I see you again
Perhaps I wanted to be the shoulder you can lean on
Just for that moment, as I was
looking at you, from a distance

October 18, 2011

"The Things I Want" by Ralph Corleone

I decided to post the poem I had to write for poetry class last semester. Yes, it's original so I'm a little proud of it.

I had a really hard time writing it (since I'm a blogger and not a poet). But hey, the professor approved of these lines any thank goodness she did because that raised my morale about writing poetry (for a while).

Anyway, here's "The Things I Want"

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The things I want,
A beer with cola
A whiskey with ice
The day to leave with its sunshine
The night to drink with as company
The radio on a loop
“Strangers in the Night”
The dining table’s glass
The chair’s support

The things I lost
The window’s condensation
The sweat off my skull
Dripping
Down to my suit jacket
The lights glaring at me
The air conditioner slacking off

I see deep within the half-empty glass
The face I don’t want to remember
The face I’ve buried
With shadows and everyday people
Her smile flashes before my weary eyes,
Drawing me in like flame
A flame to my moth
But before the tip of the fire
Comes even close, her face is gone
The girl I like, the girl I once desired
The things I want
Wouldn’t even come close to her

Why do I want her?
Perhaps it’s her smile
Shallow, but sincere
Beyond common tabloid smiles
Or Stepford grins
Lust doesn’t seem present
Just whiskey and the heat

I have everything I want
Except her,
The girl whose beauty is beyond looks alone
With a smile as lovely as a flower
In full bloom,
She was my virgin, my empress
But she was distant
As far as the starless sky,
She was non-existent
From my sight and from my touch
As if she were on the peak
Of the world’s tallest mountain
But her smile still haunts me
As if it were a ghost hidden in the night
Slowly making itself visible

To her, I was a mere shadow
Hidden within the crowds of everyday
She brought sunlight to everyone
But I was on the other side of the world

Until I could exist
To her, somehow, someway
Her smile will haunt me
A reminder of the things I want
And how they can never replace her

-----

Well, that was average, right? I'll do an explanation of it on a later post. Until then, thanks for reading my first original poem.

October 17, 2011

Karina

Back in my first year of college, I didn’t think I’d make as many friends as I have right now. I mean, back then, when I walk in the hallways of the AB building, I felt a little out of place because I didn’t know anyone in campus but after a semester, I finally had a decent amount of friends around. Little did I know, there were others that had it worse.

In order to make sense of how I even began to talk to Karina after a semester of not doing so (she was once the most quiet one in class), we have to go back a month.

In this delusion that I could pick up girls in college, I bought a book to help me. The title? The Playbook by Barney Stinson. Yes, I bought a book “written” by the womanizer from the show How I Met Your Mother. Consider me desperate. Although there was this one trick in that book that nearly worked called “The Fall in Love” and I did that play on this girl last summer 2011. Oh wait, we’re getting a little sidetracked.

Anyway, back to Karina. Using The Playbook, I was pursuing this girl (“Sprite” as she’s known from my “How I Never Met Your Mother” series from my Tumblr blog) and one time, during practice for the Philippine Literature class project, I found out “Sprite” was near the guy’s bathroom. I needed a wingman to help me talk to her but I knew that most of my guy classmates were either incompetent, ignorant, or just busy at the time so I “recruited” Karina. I said “Karina, you’re not doing anything, right? Join me! We’ll talk to this chick that I like.” And that’s how it all started. I could remember what she said about it (the gist of it at least).

Ralph: I have a crush on this girl but she doesn’t know I exist.
Karina: Oh, it’s like an anime! An anime of unrequited love with cherry blossoms around the hallway!

Call it weird but it was the start of a weird friendship that mostly involved jokes about her being lesbian because of her hair.

Karina: It’s not lesbian hair! It’s Tegan (from Tegan and Sara) hair!
Ralph: Let’s use syllogism, shall we? You have Tegan hair; Tegan is a lesbian; Ergo, by the power of syllogism, you have lesbian hair!

It was actually quite hilarious but then she’d punch me. And when she punches me, I’d insult one of her favorite bands - Paramore.

Ralph: Hey, I bought a greatest hits CD of Paramore and all I got was a blank CD.
Karina: This is for Hayley!

Then she proceeded to punch me. Her punches were actually harder than mine, which means she’s freakishly strong or I just hit like a little girl.

Every time someone would ask “Are you two together?” Karina and I would basically tell them no. I’d say “No, no, no. She’s not even pretty” then Karina would threaten to hit me, causing me to hesitatingly say “She’s not my type. Yeah, that’s right!” It’s funnier in person. And it doesn’t sound mean at all.

What I really got from her was some recommendations on which bands to listen to. Thanks to her influence, I started to love musicians like the duo of Tegan and Sara. That’s what I owe her the most. Thanks to her recommendations, I got tired of listening to hard rock and actually appreciated indy music. Not really a big fan of all of them but I garnered respect for the genre (if that’s an actual genre. I’m not sure).

I know I can say more things about her but I can’t just type that in words. It’ll be a whole series for that to be completed. So let’s just end with this.

Karina’s one of the sanest people I’ve met in class (yes, somehow saner than the rest) and really a breath of fresh air to talk to. She’s a great person to hang out with and one of the people that surprised me the most once I got to know her. Who’d have thought that the quietest girl in class (at the time) had so much depth and talent in writing? I believe that she’ll be a successful author in the future but she believes that her poetry books would go for 165 Pesos (I told her that her books could go up to 170. Haha! I kid, I kid).

So, by the off-chance that Karina’s reading this, I’d like to say: Karina, you’re a great friend. You’ll be successful so don’t worry about what the people who say negative things about you because you’re talented and they’re not. You’re good at writing – something people consider easy but when it’s their turn to write, they couldn’t come up with anything worth reading. Talented and with a good personality? Ha, you’re everything a person could ask for in a friend.

BETRAYAL.

Karla

For the next few posts for this blog, I, the guy who never shuts up, will use that never-shutting-up skill (or curse, whichever) to say good things about the friends that I’ve always enjoyed talking to. And then there’s these people. HAHA! Kidding! Yeah, these are my friends that I’ll blog about.

I could remember in the first day of History 102, otherwise known as Asian Civilization, there was this little (no, really, she was little) student who entered and sat near the door. For the first 2 weeks, this little girl was silent and talking to no one. I thought “Poor girl, 2Lit doesn’t like her. Maybe I’ll go and talk to her” but before I got to even getting up from my chair to try and talk to this literally little girl who I thought was just in her 2nd year. More on that later (Wait, this isn’t my Tumblr so I don’t have to say that).

So when I finally spoke to her, it was all casual. Nothing out of the extraordinary or anything silly. And I could remember a friend telling me “Ralph, don’t flirt”. I wasn’t! Ha! Jeez, it’s like everyone thinks that I flirt with every girl I talk to. Anyway, I digress.

Occasionally, I’d try to make her known to my classmates in 2Lit through the question “Haaave you met Karla?” And then she’d hit my arm and say “Don’t do that!” Hey, I always tried to make my friends connected with my other friends. It’s fun that way.

When she first told me she was 22, I thought “Whoa, you have got to be kidding me. With that size? You’re, like, 4-foot-2!” She wasn’t really that short but I exaggerate (because I can and I still do). She even showed me her driver’s license to prove it (but she covered her picture though. I wonder why). And I remember giving her a tackle hug (or a “glomp” as it’s called nowadays) and it was like hugging a stuffed animal with cute hair. It’s not insulting because I tell her that and she doesn’t seem annoyed by it.

After the finals of the first semester, I said goodbye to her and wished her good luck (through a text message because she left before me). Perhaps I might never see her again since she’s graduating on March of 2012 but hey, she’s awesome and that’s what matters. It’s always fun to make a few friends along the way.

So Karla, if ever you're reading this, Godspeed to you!

October 13, 2011

Philippine TV

Usually, the TV shows from the US are the ones we wait for, the ones we fawn over, and the ones we remember fondly. At least most of us with access to the internet (like the ones currently reading this right now. Hi, you!) would be aware of those shows. Heck, if the local syndicated channels here in the Philippines don’t show them, those episodes would be available through download – torrent or otherwise. That’s how dedicated the viewers are for a show that airs weekly.

Compare that to what we have in the Philippines. We have nightly dramas or teleseryes and the occasional Korean drama dubbed in Filipino. See a common trait there?

When was the last time you heard someone say “Hey, let’s download that episode of Mara Clara” or “That new episode of 100 Days To Heaven is up on a torrent website”? Of course not as much as you’d hear “Hey, let’s download the new episode of How I Met Your Mother” and if someone does say they should download Filipino shows, the people surrounding that person would laugh.

Now why don’t we Filipinos like our local TV shows? There’s no “colonial mentality” or any term that we throw around as if it’s wrong to say anything negative about Philippine media. Hasn’t anyone considered that the shows just, without a better work, suck? Or at least, from years of experience of the constant inferiority of the shows, the viewers have developed some sort of pessimism regarding these TV shows and anything advertised “exciting” is basically a lie.

One reason could be that these shows (Yes, the soap operas) are broadcast from Monday to Friday with no replay whatsoever. These are always the most advertised shows for some reason (Is the demographic “lovelorn people between ages 18-45”?). The daily showing of these TV shows diminishes why people should be excited about them. That’s why people expect the episodes from the American shows more because of its weekly format. If one US show leaves a cliffhanger, people have to wait until next week for the conclusion, but in the Philippines, people just have to wait 24 hours. Now that doesn’t sound like a bad thing for diehard fans but leave a cliffhanger every episode and people are going to get tired of it. And since these programs are shown everyday, they lose the effect of genuine suspense because the viewers don’t have to wait for anything. If they miss one show, they’d just wait 24 hours and there would it be again. And since each show lasts 3 to 6 months at least, the viewers wouldn’t care at all if they miss an episode and eventually, they’d stop caring altogether.

Another thing to consider is the writing. Not all of them are bad but somehow they are nothing out of the ordinary. And when they do try to go out of the ordinary, it’s usually based on an idea of a something popular in the west (Imortal = Twilight, which is too obvious an example). Simplicity is fine but if you have seven shows having the same simplicity in their scripts, the point of being simple is lost. Simple is good but only if every other show is filled with distinguishing traits like how one show is about a group of loud people in a bar while another show is about a guy going back to community college. But no, in the Philippines, you see a love story between two lower-middle class people again and again for months and then it simply ends with the lovers going together (Usually. Sometimes writers add a twist to that but still unforgettable). Then you forget the title of the program because another show is taking its place with the same basic premise. It’s a never ending cycle of redundancy.

Again, the constant soap operas get tiring for most people. It’s like a buffet: if it serves one kind of dish all the time, would you go for another round? The shows should have variety. Drama and comedy should have a constant run in the timeslots. Too much drama and the people would just stop expecting anything different, no matter what kind of plot twists and celebrity guests these shows would have. And the comedy shows are either viewable past 11pm (where people are usually asleep) or at 9am (where people are usually at work/school/both if you’re a teacher). If a comedy show airs but no one is around to watch it, does it cause laughter?

Usually, a show with something different gets watched the most (enough to be trending on Twitter for a day or two) – such as Agua Bendita (in its first run before it started to suck when they got rid of the kid. Poor kid), May Bukas Pa (the one with Jesus Christ), 100 Days to Heaven (old rich bitch has 100 days to do good things while in a kid’s body or else she goes to Hell), and Budoy (Guy with mental problem. I actually like that show because I sympathize with the character). Why? Because they’re different! It’s not the angst-filled guy whining and pining for a cute girl! We’ve seen that! We’ve been desensitized from that for many years now! It’s something new, something fresh! Something to actually get excited about! (And now I’m textually shouting! Come on!)

Now so far, there is no cure for this pessimism. Most of us Filipinos would look down on these shows or at least not watch them as religiously as we would with shows like Community or Vampire Diaries because we’ve been desensitized from what the networks offer despite how hard working the production crew are on the show. A bad show here and a bad show there. Unless the writers could convince us otherwise, that’s how we see it and that’s how it’ll remain.

Writing and Blogging

As a literature major, I can definitely say that I love writing. Not exactly reading because that would involve thinking which I don’t do often.

I could remember my friend from deviantART telling me this “It’s easy to write, but it’s hard to write well.” She had a point. It really irks me whenever some idiot says “Oh, writing a novel and a poem are easy”. Bullshit! Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit!

I’ve had friends, online and whatnot, try to deliberately lie to others by saying they’re poets when in actuality, all they write are sentences with enjambments and they pass it off as “free verse poetry”. Well, no, that’s not how it works. It’s much harder than it sounds, goddamn it!

…Wooo, stressing myself out there. Easy, Ralph. You’re sweating on the keyboard.

A writer is creative in more ways than one. A writer would be someone who writes news articles, poems, scripts, lyrics, and all that. It requires thinking, originality, and a little more creativity.

A blogger, as defined by the WordWeb 6 dictionary software, is “a person who keeps and updates a blog”. Alright, so what? That would mean anyone with a Tumblr blog who would keep “reblogging” funny pictures of kittens and Korean boy bands is a blogger.

That’s why I get tired of Tumblr at times but occasionally I do reblog but mostly for Deadpool – the most awesome talkative mercenary of Marvel comics, which is a really shallow superlative if you think about it. Sorry, I digress. I tried to see what was the hype about in Tumblr but every time I open it, all I see are reblogged pictures that don’t make sense. I tried to post things that would try to spark some hilarity but apparently, my super-long posts get buried by the animated pictures and stuff. So I go along out of boredom (You can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em, right?).

It’s one thing to write whatever’s in your mind. It’s another to write it in a way that would not only differentiate it from others’ work but also show what you really want to say in creative detail. For example, I have a blog that I call the “Backstab Blog” (I’m the only one who calls it that. It’s that special) where I would vent out my frustrations then there’s my Tumblr blog that I use, aside from “reblogging” stuff, to post my college stories in the ongoing blog series known as “How I Never Met Your Mother”. The title alone will give you which show I ripped off. Exactly. I ripped off Friends.

It’s not really that bad to be a writer. Sigmund Freud says, if I could get the gist of it, that a writer is like a child at play where he/she would exert emotion and seriousness to what he/she was doing. That’s actually true. When a person writes, he doesn’t simply spew out characters and storylines like they were used bubblegum. He goes deep into the characterization of these fictional people as if they were real and as if he were God developing humans for the first time. The storylines are like the most crucial parts of a person’s life, as if they were the characters’ destiny.

If simply anyone sees a novel – not read. Just simply see it – that person will tell you it’s just another story. However, a writer would tell you that the novel would be another world molded by another creator for everyone to explore its inhabitants from the outside, like tourists to a creative mind. And what writers do is create worlds and characters for readers to see and to explore.

So basically, writing is a creative process not to let us escape from our bitter reality, but rather create our own reality. Why? For some sick, twisted reason, it’s fun. It may not be the fun that everyone expected but still, we make our own fun. And look at that! “We make our own fun”, emphasis on the “make”. We made our characters, we made their setting, and we made all the convoluted storylines that we want to happen as if we’re playing with these characters like they were action figures. That’s what’s fun about writing – the execution of creativity. The fact that we are actually creative after all, that we can actually show a bit of creativity where creativity isn’t as lauded as it once was and looked down upon.

Whoa, got a little verbose there. Maybe next time, I'll post in fewer words (not at all likely).