Room Messes

UntitledI clean my room, well, once in a blue moon. Sometimes, twice a year. A while ago, I did it and managed to accomplish about, err, 15% of the tasks.

Each time I do this, things I’ve accumulated over time resurface and amaze me. Most of them do not make sense, actually, like empty boxes and wood planks. Sometimes, I suspect that I’m a witch. But there are moments, though, when I find artifact that rekindles memories and melts my heart.

Tonight, for instance, I found Nick’s body spray. Olfaction. I sprayed it on my hands and almost 3 months after he left, once again I stumbled upon his familiar scent.

Olfaction. It was olfaction that brought back the nervousness I felt when I fetched him in the airport last December. It was olfaction that brought back the feel of his hands intertwining with mine, the feel of his lips on my right temple for the first time. It was olfaction that brought back our four rambling months. Together.

You see, we have both good and bad days, and olfaction brought them back to me tonight. We have travels and adventures and nasty fights. We’ve exchanged romance and poetry and cruel words. We furnished each other with reassurance as well as cusses. Especially when we had enough. Time and again, we have pulled and pushed one another. We shared lots of break ups, both staged and hasty.

Our relationship, you see, is clattered, like my room. But hey, there are artifacts, symbols, that I find once in a blue, and that never fail to melt my heart. Adventures. Acts of kindness. Date in coffee shops. Favourite tea flavours. Book passages we’ve highlighted. Poems we have written, recited and dedicated to each other. Half-eaten plates. Butterflies for our firsts.

So yes, contrary to the popular trend of couples announcing perfect lives in Facebook, Nick and I are not like them. We’re composed, basically, of good and bad days, but that is life and that is being human — finding good things in retrospect and reliving them. And hey, guess what? The bad things did not spoil them and make them unimportant.


Phone Line

I lost my phone the other night. Those I’ve told that I’ve lost the thing, of course, asked me how I lost it. I tried to relate the circumstances prior to the loss to lessen the uncertainty, as well as pave way to theories and rationalization, but at the end, that was all I could tell them. The knowledge of how I exactly lost my phone — exactly how, when, whether someone stole it, or I simply dropped it by accident, and all the infinite possibilities — is beyond my prowess.

I guess, ganoon talaga ang buhay. Kadalasan, nawawalan tayo sa paraang hindi natin nalalaman at napaghahandaan. Basta isang araw, o isang gabi, malalaman nalang natin na wala na sila. Minsan, cellphone. Minsan, pangarap.

Claws Between a Mother and a Father

When I was 11, my Mom told me about the naked women hovering around the pool, each carrying a cat with eye sockets full of soil. The women were required to sing, she said, as they walked around, their feet never touching the water.

A long-haired man, standing on the corner of the pool, was checking the movements and sounds of their mouths. He was holding a knife — a thin, long, rusty knife with fish hooks on the edge. When the women reached the corner where the long-haired man was, they were obliged to ask the man to cut their fingers bit by bit — first a quarter, then half of it in the next round of their stroll around the lyrics of the song.

Those who squealed, she said, were stabbed in the opening of their mouths.

When I was 11, my Mom told me about the naked women floating on the surface of the pool with intermingling legs, unblinking eyes, and gaping holes on their heads. It was the time when she related to me the horrors of the inevitable, but she never mentioned — not ever — how she met my father, why he left before I was born and where he went. It must have been too painful for her.

Until now, I do not know what really happened between the two of them, but I’ve learned that the cats with soiled eye sockets ran frantically about, the dirt sinking to the depths of the bloody water.

Ferri’s Paper

xxThough highly technical and written in the language of neuroscience, Ferri et al’s (2013) paper is very interesting, I must admit. It was able to present a view in contrast with the mainstream misconception – that emotion is not irrational, is not inferior to reason, is not insignificant and should not be dismissed. Rather, it plays an integrative role in our everyday existence and day to day actions.

In the case of Mary Jane, for instance, reason dictates us to respect the supremacy of law – thus blinding us of its loopholes, of its inherent flaws and contradictions, of its cruelty, rigidness and inhumanity. This is how they define civilization – a beastly, artificial world that drags people to the gallows of heartless execution.

Emotion, on the other hand, made us see that the supremacy of law is not absolute. That it can be revised through compassion. That if the dictum of the law is oppressive, anger and dissent becomes a necessity. It makes us hope that kindness would take over and the executioners will not pull the trigger and Mary Jane could go home to her children in flesh and blood and alive.

I think the uncontested notion of reason’s superiority made us savages, cowards and barbaric in its own way. It made us fear disobedience, even if it is the right course of action in the face of adversity. Military men resort to different methods of torture in extracting information from a prisoner, reasoning that it’s their job. Landlords grab the lands of peasants, appealing to political power and reasoning that legally it belongs to them, thus resulting in the unequal distribution of wealth. SM Corporations displaced the communities in order to build condominium units that majority of the populace cannot even afford, reasoning that expansion is needed for profit generation; disregarding homelessness.

Certain international organizations refuse to take a stance about significant issues, such as the execution of Mary Jane, reasoning that it could harm their brand or human life isn’t included in their core values. It made them cower in the illusion of press release and good images in this exploitative system. Reason made people create this new trend of contentedly providing band-aid solutions to the diseases of society, and it made us fear the precise requisites to cure the root causes of these horrors.

To obtain oil, surplus market, new territories and other natural resources that would be commodified to satiate the demands of consumerism, reasons make us tear a hole in our flags and let it bleed. It blinds us from understanding the degrees and depths of the struggle and bravery of people residing in the margins of this exclusive society.

Reason made us cynic and skeptical and arrogant, and drowned us to the belief that we, humans, are rational being – we are not. Reason even failed to make us realize that the act of falling in love is one of the tragedies a person could ever encounter in this lifetime.

Emotion, however, makes us long for places that doesn’t exist, for the times gone past, parallel universes and second chances. It makes us kind and genuine and compassionate, as if life did not break us, time and again, along the way. It retains, deep within, our inherent goodness, people as soft as water.

Perhaps due to mirror mechanism, emotion even makes us smile back to a stranger who smiles at us while we were walking in some alleyway. It translates comprehension even without summoning a phrase. It makes us ride random buses, and it makes us hope to end up in some strange and unfamiliar places.

Things like these make life worth living.

Between Two Minds

You asked me to tell you why you should or should not get married within this lifetime. Well, I honestly don’t know, as I do not know the specifics between the persons involve and I have not been married yet. Both, I guess, in a general sense of the matter, have its own perks and downfalls.

So, get married if you want a companion — this is assuming that you have found the meaning of companionship in its most profound sense. Companionship does not simply mean having the physical presence of someone; it also means having the comprehension of someone who can conceive & deal with your inner-workings. Because in life, as Craig said, there is no greater distance than the distance between two minds.

Get married if you can battle acceptance. The degree of relationships and proximity will expose yourself to other people, and will expose other people to you. You will discover defects, flaws, graveyards and corpses under your and their skin, and fundamental errors in your and their being; over-familiarization will make you develop contempt. Along the way, you will learn that acceptance is an internal battle and a lot of people have lost this war in the battlefields within themselves.

Get married only if you find the person who can listen to you over and over and over and over, without resenting you. Get married only if you find the person who can accept you in your monotonous and random rantings and boring self. Get married only if you find the person who won’t dismiss your sentiments as mere, invalid drama. Get married only if you find the person who knows the sound of your breaking heart more than your laughter, and who can discern the critical difference between the two.

Marry that person who is complex enough to understand that finding happiness is not as simple as crossing the street. That this universe is full of indefinite darkness and misery, and happiness is not a fucking choice and is not always somewhere close-by and easily attainable. Actually, it’s not about promises of happiness and cure and all those bullshits — marry that person who can guarantee to patch you up and support you in your most frail and bleeding version. Marry that person who can stand your wounds.

Under no circumstances should you get married without sufficiently comprehending the tragedy of love. That no one is actually complete. That along the way in our lives, piece by piece we lose ourselves.That parts of us — passion, innocence, years, or human heart — has been extinguished, or made obsolete by time, or handed to someone else and cannot be taken back. That in turn we gain something else — experiences, mistrust, cruelty, heartlessness. That we have no demons within, but we, our very selves, regardless of the distance, are the very demons capable of dismembering a fragile human being.