Size or length?

Like us (humans), decisions continue to grow until they are killed by another decision, or by fate. Small things need small decisions – what candy to pick. Big things demand big decisions – which house to buy. As simple as that. But what if the thing is either small or big, or neither small nor big? What if it’s abstract, like faith and hope? What if it’s love? How do we measure that? Are we supposed to be talking size? Or length? Or size? No, not that green mind.

I know of a love story about a guy and a girl. It was a beautiful story of a beautiful love affair, and that’s tautology. There were times I might have wished to see myself in a relationship like theirs. Or perhaps to hold a purpose as strong – to kill a lifetime together, to live a lifetime with each other. I might have wished to hear myself confess my certainty to my partner. I might have wished to see myself planning the future, without doubt, or fear. Well, I might have wished to imagine my wedding day. But I’ve long learned the word, “Cut!” At least, I did try imagining the wedding day of this beautiful couple. Goodness, I was envious like hell!
Not really the longest in love’s history. But the way they loved each other, cared for and worried of each other, was like optical illusion. Years overly prolonged. I thought they bought some more years to add to the actual count. And I thought they’d let only a year more before exchanging “I do’s” and cheesy smiles, all to be frozen in their wedding photos.
Guy and girl both lived simple lives. No mansions and villas, no cars, no high-profile parties, not even the latest of fashion trends. Just life as it is without the pressures of this what I call social divide. Simply put, I could just recall Pinoy “telenobelas”, love stories of simple people in the provinces and barrios. Never anything complicated.
I’d see guy and girl around and just the sight of this lovely pair was enough to produce and reproduce good vibes. It wasn’t like they were, or one of them was popular. But I thought they had a fan club, count me in.
It was indeed a love story told by love itself. They had years. Not two. Not three. Now, I’m kind of talking length.
One day, that I didn’t know when, a decision was made. And now, I should be talking size. How big must love be to keep the years running, to keep the love alive? If I thought that story was beautiful, that affair was perfect, what more did it need? What slipped through it?
Six years was long but it had nothing to say to please love or to give love a good name. Six years all over in one quick decision. It was quick, so, it might have been a small decision. But it was about this abstract whatever called love. And how people supposed love to be, it should have been something big.
But every decision, big or small, finds its own time to grow, grow bigger. And a decision’s chance to grow is always embedded in its making. Until it is killed by another decision, or by a change of mind. Or by fate, if you believe in it.
We, people, always seek the right decision. But the thing is, every decision becomes right at the moment it is passed. Wrong ones come out later. Because it is only during its growth, when a decision can be judged. And when judgment is passed, it’s either you have to come fighting against the dreaded word – regret, or you’re safe and then you go on.
With all that, best wishes to guy and girl.
(*whistles*) Hey! Big fan (over here).
photo: superstock
Size or length?

The Story Of My College Life Part 2
Taking baths three times a day was the most that happened in my second year in college. And Bordo Burgers! And silogs. Darn, it used to rain graces coming straight from…the kitchen! (*grin*)


Anyway, college life was almost entirely new since that afternoon I left Men’s Dorm, except that I was still a UPLB student and a DevCom major. And I was still the girl who loved wearing jeans and shirts; who never cared about her hair; who spoke in soft voice; who ate with “princess-y” etiquette; who never enjoyed drinking water; coffee-lover; frustrated singer; frustrated guitarist; frustrated “shopaholic” and a lot lot more. And of course, I was still far away from home, so I was still the girl who had been missing her mom and dad.

SKADOOSH! Don’t call me “poor little girl”, I swear I enjoyed the freedom. “Give me liberty. Or give me death.” Right, brother? Oh, that’s another thing: I was still the baby sister who was a big fan of her brother and her sister. Just the way they write!

And importantly, I was still with one of my first roommates. (*smiles*) Thanks to you, Boy! So, after all, life wasn’t entirely new.

I was most serious with my schooling during my second year in college, believe me. School girl, yes! “Who’s the pro?” “Yes? Anything?”

Kidding. I couldn’t be any happier for myself whenever friends told me how down-to-earth I was for being able to hold back the cockalorum, keeping the big news behind my throat, and never caring to spill’em out at all. Oh dear friends, how would you know? You weren’t friends with my parents. They endured all of my bragging. I drowned them in my loud ways of self-glorification and left them no option but adore their little daughter more and more. Yeah, classical conditioning, right Ivan P.? It worked for me in a way like I was a puppy always begging for bones that sound crunchy, like an audience’s applause every time I took a bite. But that was all okay. I worked all that for self-fulfillment, anyway. And to make my parents happy, more than proud, was the big part of that so-called self-fulfillment.

Back in first year, I almost lost myself to Math. D*mn those numbers! And x. And y! I’d rather watch old Pinoy action movies like “Papunta Ka Pa Lang, Pabalik Na Ako” than an hour with college algebra.


Oh, I see! I see. I’ve never known what I’m allergic with. Not until now. College algebra (*scratching hand*). College algebra (*scratching right leg*). Oh, amen to that!

I hated Math because it hated me. That was my way of paying obedience to the golden rule: “Do not do unto others what you don’t want others do unto you.” But of course I ended up in no fair game. I had to clip up my nose while pouring out a glassful of love potion into my mouth so I’d fall for Mr. Math because I had to. Else, I’d fail ECON 11, STAT1, and my thesis. Summed up, that would be…failing my college education. So, I placed the bulk of my attention to ECON 11, and I kind of enjoyed my choice. I could only count the times I failed to review previous discussions or do advance reading before going to my ECON class. Like…one or two. Three at maximum. No, I’m not a braggart.

It often felt awkward entering a huge lecture hall where everyone was a stranger. Well, at least later on I got to talk with my groupmates in the recitation class. “Hi!” “Hello!” “Here’s your part. Answer numbers 2 and 3. Then we meet up on Wednesday afternoon, after class. Alright?” And one more thing was that our professors prepared seating arrangements so I didn’t have to worry and bother anyone asking if someone was sitting in this and that chair. Good enough.

Thanks to the love potion, I passed my exams in the lecture class, and my exercises in the recitation class. I thought I just made a good deal with ECON 11. At the end of the semester, guess what! I got a…2.0. Told you I’m not a braggart. With a flat 2.0? Nah, never mind. But I swear that flat 2.0 was precious, like piso to make for my jeepney fare, saving me from walking my way home. And working hard for it made me look like a pro! (*lol*)

It was a long year then. Things happened. I made a lot of new friends; a lot of new favorites including Bordo Burgers and silogs; lots and lots of sleepless nights, bad hair days, eye bags…and courage…and then -SKADOOSH!- good grades.

That year, I was able to actually see and operate an audio console. I mean, an old audio console. And it was extraordinary feeling I had after I got my ‘corrected but uncorrected’ DJ’s spiel with a flattering combo remarks of flat 1.0 and “Very good!” on it. No, I’m not bragging my FLAT 1.0 and my “VERY GOOD!” Anyway, in that broadcasting class, we were each given an hour to air our music program. I compiled like eight Disney songs and went on air, with a medium pack of Holy Kettle Corn, until my signing off as the hour’s DJ. That was a lot of fun, I swear to that old audio console! So, I thought I could join the jocks. Unluckily, when it was my turn to audition: D*mn words! Why are you guys so little? -_- C’mon, grow big, let me read you… -_-

But I just immediately got over it. I just thought it wasn’t written in my fate. Perhaps. Or…

“Dear Fate,
Can I just mind my own life, and you mind yours?”

That same year, I almost auditioned for official membership in SJ or Street Jazz, a famous dance group in the university. But even sooner than my second practice session with an SJ friend, I decided not to. It would require me to stay at the Baker Hall until 10:00 PM everyday. That was a no-no. ECON 11 was my thing.

Although I didn’t find myself in SJ’s late night practice sessions, I caught myself at free fall, my back landing flat on my bed, shoes untied, after an extraneous warm up and an evening-long dance rehearsal for the Loyalty Day. Cramps. And cramps. And cramps. But they paid off! The rehearsals made a good stretch to my muscles and refreshed my dance moves. I regained my winning poise, which made me look like I was on high profile.

Dancing was definitely my thing!!! Despite the paralyzing cramps, the several rehearsals and the final performance during the celebration of the UPLB Loyalty Day 2007 surely took me on a high. I was there. I danced. Front line. At first, I had to repeat it to myself that I was placed at the front because I was small. But no, it wasn’t that. The next thing I knew was that I had to stop my ears from flapping, ’cause I just heard the assistant DI said to our DI: I want her in front and in the middle. She’s effortlessly graceful. And then, I died of liver enlargement and suffocation in flattery. (*lol*)

In December, I danced again, that time for my college’s presentation in the UPLB Faculty Follies. After the program, I went out for dinner with the other performers and a few of our college instructors. At the resto, one of our college instructors was invited by his Japanese friend to his table, and not long he came back to our table with his Japanese friend next to him.

Suddenly, this Japanese man pointed at me and said: You. You. It’s you! Surprisingly, I saw myself on the screen of his laptop. It was a medium shot of me during the dance performance. Surprised, I just smiled, speechless.

I’m getting lots of flashbacks now. But this is already going too long so I should cut it here. All the rest of my 2007-2008 remain in here —> ❤ (*wink*)

The Story Of My College Life Part 2

Running Through Chapters

Of all the characters, who are to stay…until the last page?

Cliche is that, life is like a book, running through chapters. Words written, and then they happen. Words read, and then the story seems real. But of course, life is far more exciting, without question, and with all the fun, all the pain never surreal. Just real. Where would authors take their stories from? Life, of course. Or death. Somehow.

Characters abound in books. They’re elements giving life to every page while taking the readers to a breathtaking ride to the playful mind of the author. But of course, life is far more exciting, without question, as characters are countless and oftentimes…very unpredictable.
As for this book I’m reading, I’m now in a chapter where the cast is beginning to change. Just a bit. Or just a lot. I wonder what would happen to this crazy circle of girlfriends. Are they to stay until the last page? Well, maybe. Maybe not.
Kayla’s from Greenville, Mandy’s from Gothenburg. Oddie and Demi are both from Georgetown. Cait’s from Gainesville, Kim’s from Gallivare, and Farrah’s from Gambell. All in all, they come from the G World, so they’re called the G Girls. G World? Pfff, I mean, some places starting with G.
There’s one thing common in these girls (except Demi) aside from letter G. They’re in the same university – University of Pennsylvania, one of the oldest universities in America, said to be “a place to pursue knowledge beyond traditional boundaries” [1]. Besides that, they’re all in UPENN’s Annenberg School for Communication. Yeah, “comm” people, learning the art and science of human communication.
So what’s three years compared with all those years you had with your good old friends? Count from kindergarten or prep, to high school graduation. But things change. “What matters” changes. And the matters change. Age, changed personality, changed attitude, new environment, brand new experiences, what else? Perhaps, these were some of the things that started to matter at the moment our ladies realized that all they had were each other.
Nah, that’s overreacting! Of course, they had a lot of other friends besides fellow G girls. But, I suppose there was at least a reason to justify the overreacting – the candle-lit night, told in chapter 20.
The candle-lit night, as the girls called it, just happened out of the blue. It wasn’t that there was power-off. They purposely switched the lights off and lit a candle, placed it at the middle of the table, where they sat around. Sat around and talk.
Whoever spilled first, I couldn’t remember. The evening session went on like a peer evaluation, or a firing line. Well, it proceeded through the mechanics of CSC (constructive self-criticism) sessions. A name was called and she had to sit at the edge of the table where the candle stood. And then the firing line brought it on. Everyone had to say her say about the subject on post – likes and dislikes.
It rained smiles that night, both full and hesitant. Laughs and a lot of it. The OMG’s and the bad words…and the…speechlessness were like seasonings. And of course, the drops, which tried hard not to lose grip from the crimson eyes, and which failed to do so.
Kayla was never so courageous to tell the big things about herself until she met Cait, who was never less than a confidante to everyone of them. Kayla’s story was…”huge”! Huge? Yes, huge, everyone could hardly contain it. Oddie went on with the little stories of her little experiments, plus her little frustrations, if boys and love were two little things. As for Demi, she’s youngest. So, she had not much to share yet, at least, about being in college and the life attached to it. Oh, but L4D!
Cait, at that time, was almost as young as Demi in terms of experience. I mean experiment. I mean…in terms of…things. But she was actually older than Demi. So, she settled at telling about her happiness and madness with the girls. Kim had a little secret too. Not that she was once a drug addict. And although Farrah wasn’t there, she gave up her secret later on, during the girls’ slumber party where alcohol was substitute to water.
And Mandy? Well, Mandy has to keep on reading, so she could answer that question at the top. (*smiles*)
Running Through Chapters