Showing posts from October, 2013


Falling debris, crashing bridge, and all the other objects of fear are far and unreal. Nothing scars like words words words.

So maybe a silence and Paulaner. As it is wont to work, draft dries tears.
Bartender: Are you waiting for someone?
Me: No. (Yes.)


—Good morning, moon.
—Same moon in between two cats on the wall walking toward each other.
—Cheap bars nearing closing time, drunken men not quite done partying.
—Stench of uncollected garbage.
—Jeepney half-filled with women in uniform, reporting for factory work maybe.
—20-minute walk to the country club.

—Sporting event starts. Kids play, I work.
—No appetite for breakfast, craves coffee only.

—Work done. Heads straight to ATC.
—Bought Alex Garland's The Beach.
—Full-body massage.

—Late lunch, starts reading The Beach. Exciting. Wants to go to the beach.
—Spots a cat.
—A mother approaches, asks if she and her kids could share a table with me. Sure. Let's share the cake as well?
—Vow of endless love: 'I shall love you until cats stop being cute.'

—Watched Carrie. Film's pretty tight, I don't however see the point of remaking it.

—Goes to Mama Lou's to meet past office mates.
—Too early, reads The Beach some more…

Forever, in an instant, from sunshine to shadow

I made my way up the east staircase, one slow step at a time. At the top I stopped to rest, perching for a while on the last step like a bird on a bough.

Only here at the top of the house did I feel myself removed, in a way from the crushing burden of being a de Luce. Up here, above it all, I was somehow myself. Buckshaw is a Georgian house which size is commensurate with its history. It is home to the de Luces—widower Colonel de Luce and his three daughters: Ophelia, Daphne, and Flavia, along with the colonel's trusted steward, Dogger.

The bird perching on the bough was Flavia, a young girl with a passion for chemistry and the dead. She is the lead character in Alan Bradley's Flavia de Luce Mystery series, which I only recently discovered but quickly fell in love with.

I finished the fourth title, I am half-sick of shadows, this afternoon. The country is observing a holiday and this was a chance for me, like Flavia, to feel myself removed, in a way from the crushing bur…

The ecstasy of yours

Three things I love: coffee, snail mail, books. Two more things I love: surprises, giving.

A lot of my friends celebrated their birthday in September; so it was, for me, next to Christmas, the month when I handed out the most number of gifts. And I wonder what makes gift-giving so pleasurable. Does it have to do with the desire to please someone or gain something in return? In my case, all I want is to see a positive reaction from the recipient once the present is unwrapped. So there's selfishness in there, too—needing an acknowledgement of your good taste, attention to the other's lifestyle and quirks, and resourcefulness.

That said, it's also wonderful to be on the receiving end. Yesterday I was bedridden, nursing a cold and tortured by the thought of wasting the entire weekend at home. But happiness soon arrived at the gate, a surprise package from J:

How many things do you plan to buy but couldn't get around to buying even if it's easily available and …

Posterity is not our business

Last month, The Guardian ran a Q&A with James Bond. I'm no idol, but the questions are fun to answer. So here's my adult slam book post.

When were you happiest?
In college.

What is your greatest fear?
Secrets exposed, privacy invaded.

What is your earliest memory?
Life in our house at Agoncillo in Malate, Manila.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
I can be passive and passive-aggressive.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

Aside from a property, what's the most expensive thing you've ever bought?
A 20/20 vision.

Where would you like to be now?
In bed with this guy I met early this year.

What do you most dislike about your appearance?
Scar at the back of my right lower leg.

What is your most unappealing habit?
I retire to my little space and become very quiet, expecting everybody to understand, forgetting that people sometimes actually seek and enjoy my company.

What is your favourite smell?

What is your favourite word?