Red Chucks made from sin, shaved my face, uncovered my chin. Pop these pimples for these people, can’t hear my voice ’cause it’s too feeble. Getting late not getting laid, but that’s all right, I’m getting paid. Reading books while losing looks–what have you done? You’re off the hook! Refreshing pages converts to wages, wage my war as my face ages. There’s really nothing here, you see, just passing time and holding pee. Updating sucks, ideas flock to distant times you can’t get back. And when your hacks can’t get a Mac, you just sit back and rock and rock. Eat your chicken, a little smitten, come home from work, fuck–more kittens! I guess there’s mess and plenty pests for every day you can’t digest. But come, move on, and bang your head against the wall, forget the bed, forget the fall. Tie up those laces, too poor for braces, will never get out of life’s love mazes. So I just get up from my chair, brush my hair, it’s never fair. Perhaps one day I’ll see you grin, and then I’ll run and scream my scream. But when that day comes and you take the win, I’ll simply take a spin–I mean–while wearing my red Chucks made from sin.
Tag Archives: writing
Been lying here under the car since forever, bugs carelessly flying above my drooping ears, a busy community of ticks underneath my thinning fur, my belly warming the road and vice-versa.
Used to race back and forth along this dusty street, chasing cars, bikes, and strange people with unfamiliar scents. I never got tired even when my tongue was flapping out my snout, leaving a trail of drool in the rushing wind. Life was a never-ending chase then and I was the four-legged speedster behind it, unrelenting, hungry. I never got tired and realized I was spent until now…
Now I just lie here like a log long broken down by poison mushrooms. I watch the road, the cars, the bikes, and the people but the fire in my gut has been extinguished. They’re all begging to be chased screaming from one corner to another but my legs just won’t move like they used to. And so I watch them overrun this street–my street soaked in my sour pee–and I watch them helplessly.
These days, I am a pretty useless “pet”–if you can still call me that. Can’t even protect my home no more should a man with an evil intent climbs over the wall one of these humid nights. If I’m lucky enough to spot his shadow with my bloodshot eyes almost shut by sticky green grit, then I might let out a bark though my owners shouldn’t really count on it since I lost the demon in my voice years ago when a nasty piece of chicken bone got stuck in my throat. Sure, I’ll force myself to run after him and try my best to bite his leg but don’t count on it. Nobody should ever count on it anymore.
Look at these people with the smirk on their faces–how I long to wipe it off with a good growl. Men are arrogant–they think they know life because they live longer than us. A wise, old dog once told me that men live seven of our lifetime, and that makes them proud beings. What fools. If one has seven lifetimes, then that means it takes them seven times longer to commit life’s mistakes and to learn from those mistakes–seven bouts of the same pain from the same wound, which would never close even when it was licked to heal years ago. And from such an unimaginably protracted existence, you may be seven times the wiser but you’re also seven times the fool.
How many lifetimes does it take to learn what to eat? What to put in your snout and be part of your body? Do you really need such a lengthy life to know that your nose tells the truth? The food that nurtures smells good even if may not always look nice, and what’s rotten smells bad even if it’s often a feast for the eyes. The nose doesn’t lie–for it’s an extension of your heart.
How many lifetimes does it take to learn to establish your territory, to pee on the right wheels and scratch at the right trees? Surely once is enough? The independence and insolence of youth might drive you once or twice to cross the invisible boundaries that cut this space of earth but you learn from your first teeth-and-claw fight to respect others, to stay away from the sacred shrines they diligently guard.
In the same way, seven lives are too many to understand that you can never understand cats. Some things are better left misunderstood–and that’s a sign of respect, too, for cats similarly can never understand you.
You don’t need seven lifetimes to realize that the greatest kind of loyalty comes from humility–that there are things bigger than you and you owe your life to them. You bow your head in service to their greatness and transcendence, and when you’ve learned to bow your head low enough, you become great, too, for you have transcended yourself.
It is often said that freedom is overrated but it is more often misinterpreted. Gnash your fangs and howl all you want at cages and collars but nothing teaches the essence of true freedom as bitingly as limits.
And then there’s love–that primeval force that sends you scrambling desperately out the gates at night when all the unwanted eyes are closed or looking somewhere else dark. The unbearable heat of it, the madness that comes rushing through your veins! You can never rest and crawl in a comfortable corner until you’ve smelled her lovely scent and felt her warmest secrets. But you’ll never learn her secrets no matter how deeply you fall–and that perhaps is the greatest limit of all. For no matter how fast you run, love still runs faster–an unchasable car. And because your paws and claws can never even scratch it, you keep running like a rabid canine–irrational, insane, untamed, wild, honest.
Another kid throws a ball at me. I don’t even flinch. I’m tired and lazy like a young cat. The world now has to forgive me for every little thing I can’t do for I’ve paid my dues, barked my blues, and done them all before. People have this saying that old dogs can’t learn new tricks. They’re wrong. We can learn new tricks anytime–but old dogs don’t play no games. Not anymore.
I don’t know. What should I tell you?
That I’m typing this half-naked in the most Third World of settings, which makes it more ironic because of the obvious desire to be bigger and more “cultured?”
That despite this squalor, I’ve somehow just bought this cool tablet computer but purchasing it felt like sacrificing one of my kidneys to the Chinese capitalist god? I’m actually in trouble of blowing my end-of-year bonus in a week and having nothing for Christmas. Terrible possibility: must avoid at all costs!
Hmm. I don’t know. What should I write about?
Perhaps I should write about the Christmas party of my former team in the office. I had so much fun I wasn’t quite the same guy the next morning. Didn’t sleep, by the way, because we had a family reunion following that wild night of Christmas partying.
At the party, there was the usual talk about love and relationships with other guys–not that I’m complaining or cringing in any way. And yep, guys do talk like girls. Frankly, that’s one of the few conversation pieces I’m interested in. Everything else seems like a waste of time and a futile exercise of jaw muscles.
One guy talked about patience, caring, and understanding. In a matter of minutes, I knew we were both confused over the meaning of all three. Thank god for alcohol. I told him I understand him completely though I’m not really sure if that’s a good or a bad thing. An addict understanding his fellow addict doesn’t make them clean for shit.
Another guy told me to basically rewire my brain. Now that’s hard. That kind of advice is music to the ears but it’s almost always a Houdini to pull off when you’re already on the front lines. God knows how many philosophies, socializations and re-socializations I’ve gone through my entire life.
But I believed him and I think he’s right. Maybe it’s not enough to think you’ve moved on. Maybe there should be a conscious and constant effort on your part to move forward and attack your brain so that it demolishes everything you’ve perceived as basic, unassailable realities before.
Maybe there isn’t any template for the right girl. And what if I can truly convince myself that I’m a–what’s that cliche term–tabula rasa? Man do I hate that term.
But I’m sure I’m just bored. This is what happens when I can’t think of anything to write about because my head is filled with half-baked plans and fears. And someone.
Maybe you can’t really write about the things that you truly care about, deep inside, without all the bullshit that somebody somewhere successfully funneled into your brain? What if I just wasted my own time with these words and the one thing I should say–need to say–on this blog and to myself is impossible to say?
I’m pretty sure all that alcohol I ingested during the Christmas party is gone from my system by now, so no, I’m not drunk.
I guess I’ll just return to tinkering with that expensive tablet computer and wring out the value of my money. Comicbooks to read and movies to watch and all.
Or I’ll just think about her again and plan a better article another time.
Yeah, maybe I’ll write about it.
I wanted to shave. But the woman who will truly love me would not care if I shaved or not. So I grew a beard as long as the Taliban’s.
I wanted to comb my hair. But the woman who will truly love me would not care if I combed my hair or not. So I never looked in the mirror again.
I wanted to treat my pimples. But the woman who will truly love me would not care if I were the biggest pizza face in the crowd. So I let the nasty green buggers spread down to my neck.
I was planning on getting fit. You know, jogging, gym and veggies? But I realized the woman who will truly love me wouldn’t care about my weight. So I scratched out “healthy living” from my vocabulary.
I was meaning to read this novel my friends recommended. But then again the woman who will truly love me wouldn’t give a damn about what I read. So I stuck with comicbooks and started mocking all the idiots reading that stupid novel. Sad, unloved hipsters.
I was looking to visit some old friends. But the woman who will truly love me may not be friends with my friends. So why bother? Let those bridges burn, I told myself.
I was wondering whether it’s time for a wardrobe switch for something more elegant, professional–something girls would find dashing. But then I remembered I don’t need other girls or their taste in fashion. The woman who will truly love me would like me whatever I put on. So I just wore the same 3 sets of jeans and shirts every week ’til they smelled of rotten cheese and onions.
I wanted to save. But the woman who will truly love me wouldn’t do so for my money. So I spent every penny before the next payday and fell into debt with my boss.
I used to envy guys with cars. But the woman who will truly love me would gladly walk with me to the train or bus station every day even if we both end up sweaty and stinky. So screw cars.
I used to use deodorant.
I used to dream about being a lawyer. But why go through all that trouble if the woman who will truly love me wouldn’t give a rat’s ass if i were a bum? So to hell with lawyers.
I used to help in the house. Not anymore.
I used to care about what my colleagues would say about my work. Sorry, they’re clearly not the woman who will truly love me, so they can go ahead and talk behind my back. While they’re at it, they can kiss my hairy crack.
Used to play the guitar even if I wasn’t good at it. The woman who will truly love me wouldn’t force me to be musically pleasing in any way, though. So I ditched the guitar and now I couldn’t play you the G chord even if you put a gun to my head.
Used to write poems. Became virtually illiterate.
Used to sketch. Stick figures.
Eat on time. Ulcer.
Come to work early. Suspended. Fired.
Brush my teeth. Cavities.
Let old women take my seat in the train.
Tickle other people’s babies as if I really like them.
Well, the woman who will truly love me would accept me as I am. So I became me and fell down the rabbit hole.
Drowned myself in alcohol and dove into first-hand, second-hand, third-hand, fourth-hand smoke. Slept with every skank in search for a slob for the night. Feasted in fried chicken forever without an end in sight. Checked out some nifty booze and got high as fuck. As Spock. And cracked. Door’s locked. At home. No Luck. Collapsed onto the roadside slobbering drunk.
But the woman who will truly love me would always call me back. Whatever I do. She’d welcome me back to her arms.
She’d tell me it’s all right to be imperfect. Nobody’s perfect.
And she’d hold my hand and tell me I’m enough. And then she’d hug me. Kiss me. Sing to me.
So I got lung cancer.
Began to wheeze and sneeze everyday ’til I freaked out everybody in the new office. The woman who will truly love me would’ve understood.
Started spitting out huge blobs of toxic green sputum all over the place. The woman who will truly love me would’ve given me comfort.
Coughed my blood out ’til my gums were soaked in red. The woman who will truly love me would’ve puckered up and sucked my big, fat lips dry.
Ribs quickly rose like a mummy decomposed. Skin dried up pretty fast. Eyes sunk like somebody’s sucking them out the other side of my huge skull. The woman I’m talking about would’ve shagged me still. She’d shag me hard while I’m coughing up ooze in her face. Oh, she’d shag and I’d cough, shag and cough, shag and cough, and then we’d do it all over again.
Of course ’til my boner gave way.
But something tells me she’d still try to stroke it. She’d love me that much, you know?
And then in my final days, I’d write my will. Wouldn’t be able to give my mom anything–not a single dime. She’ll curse me to hell but the other woman won’t.
I won’t have anything for anybody.
Except my undying love for the only woman who will truly love me back all the years of my short life.
Then I’d die.
Unfortunately, I won’t have money for a good burial, too.
I’ll tell my dad to throw my disheveled bag of bones in a river like the way he did it with our dead pet dogs and cats.
The woman who will truly love me would cry the only tears I long for, anyway.
She’d get down on her knees and cry. She won’t be able to help herself.
Let’s write again.
And let’s hope I haven’t forgotten how to stitch up with words what’s usually left gaping in life.
Let’s write about stuff again. My favorite petty things that have occupied so much space in my mind. Let’s write about work and home and the MRT; if you’re me, you almost always find yourself occupying one of the three.
Let’s write about thoughts again. Thoughts that dance so wildly they’re often more real than what I can touch with my oily fingers. The same thoughts that are so lethargic they make me sleepy just thinking about them. God they’re boring.
Let’s write about politics again and limit it to a single, icky sentence.
Let’s write about writing again and secretly gloat over the playfulness of the words–the inverted reflection of an ego so serious it abhors playing. Let’s express our love for words. My bread and butter. My feeding tube and others as well. The reason I’m digesting a huge piece of grilled meat right now and going to the bathroom to take a huge dump later. The reason why somebody on the Internet today, right this very moment, is probably cashing out while gladly taking my bullshit in. It’s a craft.
Let’s write about a girl again.
Oh, there’s always a girl–and that’s the first excuse. The first strokes of a craft well executed.
Yes, there’s always a girl. And the truth is, when everything coated with bull crap is wiped spotlessly clean, the only thing worth writing about is a girl.
There’s always, always a girl.
The one who breaks your heart walks away, another one comes creeping in. Freakin’ creeps they are. The new one’s not the same girl but something indescribable moves you to think she might still be the same, exact one.
Strange but maybe she’s even the same one you thought you got over with years and years ago. Sometimes, it seems to me, she’s all the girls in my life just wearing different masks and costumes. A trickster par excellence.
Maybe her ultimate role is to keep me chasing after her skirt–and you know how much they’re a killer when they’re wearing skirts. Maybe she’s a fishing line and I’m a fish. Only she’s the kind of line that doesn’t end and I’m the kind of fish who’s addicted to hooks. The endless whirring of the reel goes on.
Maybe–just maybe–it’s her purpose to keep creaming my heart until there’s no more and I’ll take the first woman I see by the hand on a drunken night in front of the altar just to fuckin’ get on with it and die.
Maybe her ultimate reason for living is to make me live.
But I guess I’ll wait for her and try to set an appointment despite her impossibly unpredictable schedule. I’ll search for her masked face in the crowd who don’t really give a shit about me and her. Keep on looking ’til I pick up her scent, that familiar fragrance of a kind of fear that has to be met like a man in order to feel like a man. And if I can’t sniff her out because she’s so elusive and rare, maybe I’ll wait some more and grow old some more. I’ve done it before and fairly recently.
In the meantime, I think I’ll tap on the keyboard.
Tap on it like a modern mating call ’til she shows herself–the love that won’t leave.
But come on. Let’s just stop this madness and write again.
Step on a pile of dog shit on the street. It’ll get stuck in the grooves of your sole.
And your soul witnesses a pedo at work. What even led you to that porn site? So deprived, and dried, and dead of you to do so.
So you give a few coins to the beggar on the foot bridge. She’ll pocket ’em. Buy with ’em. And they’ll ride the silent hand of economics but may not show on the statistics. Most good deeds don’t show on official papers. But you hope they’ll turn around and they will.
Work on a file of work sheets. You’ll get stuck in your chair ’til Saturday.
And your gray day hinges on a core of hot, steaming love that radiates warmth to the littlest corners of your ageing being.
So you send a few sweet messages over cyberspace. She’ll receive ’em. Hope with ’em and dream with ’em. And that love will ride the frantic hands of time but may not show on her replies. Much of love doesn’t show on instant messengers. But you hope it’ll turn around and it will.
Celebrate a day on Christmas Day. You want to be stuck in the stupid, raucous party ’til next year.
But in your heart thrives a fear for the future doesn’t recognize man’s celebrations. The future ignores them. Goes on and on and on, riding the merciless hands of history with you helplessly dangling on its tail. The future doesn’t reveal itself, not even its cruel eyelashes, on Christmas Day. But you hope things will turn around and they will.
Dig on a pile of spaghetti. Ground beef will get stuck in the grooves of your teeth, which you should’ve taken care of with more consideration for when you’re 50.
So you suck that succulent, spicy sauce all night long–what a sucker you are. Sucking on that tangly spaghetti, putting it in your intestines and putting on the weight. Intestines threaded with noodles.
Happiness is over.
Your gray day hinges on a core of hot, steaming love that radiates warmth to the littlest corners of your ageing being.
We’re like fire born by firewood. Life goes to ridiculous extremes to make our young embers ignite only to douse us with water or shower us with sand to put us out when we’ve already grown hot enough to become a roaring flame. Then it’s all over as we quietly send our farewell smoke into the traveling wind.
Remember, as a child, your life was measured by what you can do? You could run around the playground without getting tagged and tired unlike your fat playmates who just couldn’t keep up. You could swing like a real monkey at the monkey bars unlike your frail nancy-boy schoolmates. You could play with X-Men action figures unlike your cousin who only played with cheap plastic toy soldiers, which were boring as hell as they’re all painted the same color. You could numb your red lips with ice cream everyday while the dirt-poor street kids only watched with their drooling mouths agape. You could also probably house your Barbie doll in a huge white house and make her flirt with Ken; totally unlike your bestfriend who merely had a stinky hand-me-down ragdoll from her grandma.
Think about it. Back in those days, you could do a lot of things.
Armed with this knowledge that you could do a ton of stuff, you entered school. At school, in that classroom as silent as a bathroom and as uniformly dreary as Sunday church, one thing stuck out: all of you runts in there thought you should rule the place. Those plain, crisply ironed uniforms were the most deceptive of all, for they concealed the fact that some of you were better than others, and a handful were unfairly “gifted” gits. This innocent-looking room would suddenly turn quite violent and stressful as this shared knowledge of egoistic invincibility resulted into fierce competition — manifested by hands shooting up into the sky to catch the attention of the bespectacled, big-bellied arbiter known as the Teacher.
In all subjects, you were always trying to trump someone else. It’s either that or the other guys stomped on you. No field was free for you to conquer. No monkey bars there, nor ice creams or Barbie mansions. Every goddamn place was a battleground: the track and field, the canteen, even the bathrooms. There was always some prize to strive to win, whether graded or not. Even your crushes didn’t come easy and things would get really disgusting when your own cunning seatmates got them first.
In school, you learn that there are things you can do and things you cannot do. Continue reading