Friday, September 30, 2011

Secret Obsession

I checked if my husband was looking before I discreetly called up the YouTube site on my screen. I typed a search filter, clicked on one of the links that appeared, and put my earbuds on.

He appeared on the screen. Handsome. Confident. Almost regal. Then he commenced with his speech. And I don't know if it was for the same reasons as before, but I was again in awe. Of my ex.

It's my dirty little secret, and I admit, it's quite bordering on obsession. Is this a form of cheating? I honestly don't know. What i do know is that in spite of this guilty pleasure, I don't love my husband less.

Some might say this is an excuse, but maybe I don't really need to analyze and justify what I still feel. Perhaps it is simply that love, even one that's all in the past, will always be beautiful to look at.

photo from here

Thursday, September 29, 2011


click to animate gif

"Mukha kang may sakit. Mag-ahit ka bago tayo lumakad," utos ng aking asawa.

Nagbihis ako pero hindi ko pa rin tinanggal ang aking designer stubble. Naman! Weekends na nga lang ako pwedeng magpatubo nito mula nang magkatrabaho. Siyempre masama na naman ang tingin niya sa akin pagkalabas namin ng flat.

"O, bakit?" tanong ko sa kaniya.

"Tingnan mo nga sarili mo sa salamin," matipid niyang sagot. "Mukha kang pang G-Men."

Eh di tingin naman ako sa salamin habang nasa elevator. Makapal na ang aking bigote't balbas. Malaki ang initim ako sa kabibilad sa sikat ng araw. Masikip at maikli ang puting t-shirt na suot ko dahil sa kawalan ng exercise. Bakat ang aking utong dahil sa lamig ng panahon.

Sumakay kami ng train. Pinagmasdan ko ang mga tao sa paligid, at tama siya. Naiiba nga ako sa putla at kinis ng mga tagarito kaya't conscious na naman ang aking closetang asawa. At dahil mukha daw akong Japanese porn star, pinakitaan ko siya ng aking acting skills.

Habang nakatayo kami nang magkatapat, tinitigan ko siya ng malagkit. Malaswa. Bahagya kong kinagat ang aking labi. Umastang gusto ko siyang sunggaban at bigla na lang pupugin ng halik. Namula ang tenga ng loko. Pati mga katabi niya'y nakatingin. Nakangisi. Parang gustong sumali.

Lumapit ang aking asawa. Idinantay nito ang kaniyang palad sa aking dibdib. Napapikit ako.

"Baliktad ang t-shirt mo," ang sabi ng kumag sabay hila sa nakalabas na tag nito.

gif file from

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Peter Holds On To His Tights

All of us were children once. We had toys - I still remember my favorite one. And we had our own little worlds. From a hidden one lit by a penlight under a blanket sky. To our dreams of never never land where children can fly and never grow up. But we did grow up. The toys disappeared. The blankets were washed. The penlight batteries ran out. And our young dreams were stripped of their innocence.

Slowly we became conscious of grown up things. Money. Career. Time. Responsibility. The same things that allow us to enjoy our grown up toys, live comfortably in this grown up world, and fulfill our grown up dreams. Toy, world, dream - blogging is all these to me, but now life is getting in the way. And the more I try to grow up, I find it all the more difficult not to let it go.

photo from here

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Useless Lump

On my first day at work last week, the office handed me a brick. A chunky paper weight. Well they said I can access my email account and do a hundred other things on-the-go with it. I don't exactly remember what, 'cause I kinda zoned out when I.T. started to speak in tongues.

As with the ones I had before my extended unemployment, I shoved the useless lump in my drawer and sealed its fate. Until it suddenly started ringing. It was our team's dragon lady of a secretary berating me for not having it on hand. I thought of denying it, but she was just behind me.

So here I am, trying to make sense of it. Slowly warming up to it, as I gradually learn which buttons to press. I somewhat understand it now, I know it will become useful in time. Because like me, it just needs to prove that it deserves having been given a second chance.

photo from here

Thursday, September 22, 2011



"Our cable subscription sucks. Chinese. More Chinese. Aaaaaand... still Chinese. Wait, this one looks Korean. Great. Dubbed and subbed in Chinese. For Confucius' sake! We have hundreds of channels, and I end up just quickly jumping from one to the other. If only these channels were boys..."

I was into one of my usual monologues. I honestly think I'm turning into a caricature of a mid-age housewife, sans the colorful duster, large hair curlers, and Swarovski crystal-embellished nail art. Hubby eventually tired of my bitching and kicked me out. I think he just wanted to watch China's answer to Mara Clara in peace.

I decided to go to one of my favorite streets, where the entire stretch is lined with local crafts. Armed with broken Chinese and Kapwa Ko Mahal Ko hand gestures, I was able to negotiate two large paintings, matching wooden frames, two huge stone statues, a delivery van, and two hunky guys to help me with my stash.

I walked into our apartment with the musclemen in tow. When they started to bring my valued purchases in, I had to help my husband pick his jaw up off the floor. I was so excited, I didn't know where best to place them. I had to ask the guys to move them around a few times. Also a great excuse for keeping the men there longer.


Hubby had a satellite dish installed.

photo from here

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Phad Thai

"Takbo Sean! Tangina! Bilisan mo't magtago ka!" sigaw ko sa aking sarili.

Kumaripas ako palayo. Hinawi ko ang mga kamay na pilit na kumakapit sa akin. Kaliwa, deretso, kanan. Di ko alam kung saan ako susuot. Nagkubli ako sa dilim. Humihingal. Pakiramdam ko'y sasabog ang aking dibdib.

Malas! Gusto kong i-umpog ang ulo ko sa pader. Unang beses kong pumasok sa ganitong lugar. Nangibang bansa pa ako nang magkalakas loob. Pero hanggang dito'y meron pa ring nakakilala sa akin.

"Wag kang matakot. Sa atin-atin na lang ito," bulong ng aninong katabi ko.

Muntik na akong mapasigaw sa gulat. Buti na lang at napigilan kong magmura. At sa kapiranggot na natitira ko pang presence of mind, pilit ko pa ring itinuloy ang aking pagkukubli.

"Sawasdee krub," matipid kong sagot sa kaniya.

"Aw c'mon, Sean. Look around you. Tayong dalawa lang ang tuli rito. Anyway, see you back in the office," ang sabi niya bago siya lumayo. Dali-dali akong nagbihis at bumalik na sa hotel.

Wala namang nagbago sa pakikitungo namin sa isa't isa sa opisina. Tulad ko, nagtatago rin siya. Sikreto ko'y mismong sikreto rin niya.

- = o 0 o = -

"Alam mo ba kung sino ang nagladlad na sa Amerika?" tanong ng kaibigan kong babae sa dinner namin kaninang magkakabarkada. Nangilabot ako sa isinagot niyang pangalan.

Halos isang dekada na ang nakakaraan mula nang gabing iyon, ngunit bigla ko pa ring gustong kumaripas ng takbo at magtago sa dilim. Buti na lang dumating ang waitress at naputol ang usapan. Inilapag nito sa mesa ang inorder kong Phad Thai.

"Kop khun kha," ang wala sa sarili kong nasambit sa kaniya.

photo from here

Sunday, September 18, 2011


The last time we were in Manila, I dragged my husband to the usual places. I had this mesmerized look on my face and blurted exclamations of wonder the whole time. I didn't even notice, until he said that for someone who grew up in Manila, I was acting too much like a tourist.

I was about to say that it has changed significantly from the last time we visited, which I then remembered was barely a month prior. Fine. I hailed a cab to Greenbelt. Maybe lunch would lift his mood. As we were combing through the line of restos, I kept on snapping our pics among the greenery.

"See? There you go again," he said.

Of all places, we ended up in Max's. Again. He ordered sinigang, crispy pata and extra rice. After the meal, we headed to Levi's, where he meticulously picked only the Philippine-made jeans. We then crossed to Landmark where he hoarded bottles of calamansi, Close Up, Rexona, and Tide.

As I now file the neglected photos from that trip, I find myself browsing through our pictures from years ago. We have aged since then, but that wasn't what caught my attention. The once distinct-looking boys (one Chinese, the other Pinoy) on the screen now look so much alike.

I smiled at one of the photos. Somewhere in between Landmark and Glorietta, the tourist and his local companion stood patiently in line for a cab. As to which one was which, now I couldn't really tell.

photo from here

Friday, September 16, 2011

Lazy Bus Ride

We've all heard it before. How one appreciates things more once they become less accessible, lost, or unattainable. Neighbors who've moved. Family and friends. An old flame. A suitor turned down, and now taken.

For me it's time. The hours that I took for granted in over a year as a sloth. I woke up late. Slept whenever I wanted. Enjoyed movies and telethons. Read. Blogged when I felt like it. Time didn't need to be managed. I had too much of it.

But now I'd find things to pass up on. Breakfast. The gym. Sleep. Just so I can fit in things that now matter more. TGIF and everyone's rushing to catch a quick train ride home. I walked to the bus stop instead. I wanted to indulge myself with a few more minutes, and be able to finish an entry in this lazy ride home.

photo from here

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I Got Mooned

The Mid-Autumn festivities exploded over the long weekend. There were bright lanterns everywhere. Restaurants were full. Shops quickly ran out of fruit baskets. And people were in a celebratory mood.

Since the holiday is also known as the Mooncake Festival, countless boxes of this pastry were going around. It's one of the few Chinese sweets that I enjoy, and I was over the moon when a friend brought me special ones from a recent trip.

Let me share a few of these with you, albeit online. Cheeky, yet fitting, delicacies for the Moon Festival.

photos from and the G.O.D. lifestyle store

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Summer's End

Yesterday felt like the last day of the school summer break. On one hand you feel excited. You pick out what you'll wear the next day and make sure that everything is ready. On the other hand, something gnaws at you. You worry unnecessarily and can't sleep as soundly.

And then today comes. The day you've been expecting. The same one you've been dreading. After all, what happens today can make or break you. You walk through the door, and you're finally in. Yet as the day advances, you realize you've never felt more out.

After a while, I decided to take a short break to escape the cold in the office. I stepped out of the building, and decided to draft this entry out here in the sun. Sweating in this suit. Trying to catch even just the tail end of the summer that I now so desperately miss.

photo from here

Monday, September 12, 2011


Today I walked. And walked. Then walked some more. Leisurely. Aimlessly. I didn't care about street names and directions. I thought maybe you don't really get lost if you don't have a destination.

I loved the warmth of the sun on my skin. The way it made my skin prickly before the beads of sweat came. And with the arrival of the mid-autumn and its festivities, the weather was slightly cooler. More pleasant.

I even welcomed the dust in the air and the smell of exhaust fumes from vehicles on the road. For like the sun and the cool breeze, their unseen choke has been a part of my days.

I stopped under a large tree, and steadied myself against it. I looked around. Listened. Inhaled the scents around me. Felt the rough bark against my hand. Committing what came to my senses to memory.

Tomorrow I will again be confined within the padded walls of a workstation, with its artificial lighting, air-conditioning, and the smooth feel of modular plastic. And so today I wanted to make sure I'll remember all this, for those times when I'll feel the need to escape.

photo from here

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Panda Invasion

I think they're called pandas, the eastern equivalent of bears. In a place that is overrun with either twinks or mid-age men who dress and look way beyond their years, they are an interesting sight. Beefy in their tight Abercrombie tees, they are about as cute and cuddly as, well, pandas.

I don't know where they're from. My guess is Taiwan. They speak the same language, but their accent and the way they carry themselves are both different. I have never seen so many of them together in one place. If this is an invasion, let me be the first to be tied up and taken away.

I tease my hubby. He's actually the one who's into them. Frustrated that I can't bulk up enough to meet his standards. Kidding. A number of them look our way. Good thing I am wearing a tight Hollister shirt. Fake nga lang, but it will do. I inhale deeply to add bulk to my torso and smile.

The hubby looks at me, playfully pokes my side, and laughs. Unable to control my giggling, I immediately start to deflate, as I watch the pack of pandas pass me by.

photos from here

Friday, September 9, 2011

Libreng Pangarap

Tumaya ako ng lotto. Yung equivalent nito sa bansang ito. Malabo mang mangyari, malay mo manalo. Hindi ko na kailangang pumasok sa bagong trabaho sa susunod na linggo. Pwede na kaming umuwing mag-asawa at sundin ang talagang gusto.

Dati akong guro sa isang pampublikong paaralan. Saglit lang naman. Hanggang inabutan ng responsibilidad at pangangailangan. Napadpad ng Makati bago dito nakipagsapalaran. Nakalimot sa unang bokasyon, dahil sa buhay na nakasanayan.

Mahirap magturo. Pero nang makilala ko ang aking mga alaga, mas mahirap palang matuto. Lalo na kung ikaw ay nagugutom. Kailangang tumulong kumita sa hapon. Bago matutukan ang gawaing bahay. At walang mapagtanungan sa di nakatapos mong magulang.

Kailangan mong tiyagain. Unti-unting pagsikapan. Hanggang makita mo ang kanilang kagalakan, na di lang dahil sa kanilang naintindihan. Kundi dahil na rin sa nakita nilang pagmamalaki ng kanilang tatay-tatayan.

photo from here

Monday, September 5, 2011


Gasgas nang mga linya. Katipo ng "where have you been all my life?" Di ba't nakakasuka? Pero diyan nagsimula ang lahat. Kasama ng ilang order ng lychee martini na nainom ng loka. Blame it on impaired judgement. Di nagtagal ay naging sila.

Umabot na rin sila nang mahigit sa isang taon. Isang taong madalas na magkagalit-bati. Isang taong ako ang binubulabog sa tuwing sila ay may problema. At heto na naman sila. Going strong pa rin sa takilya ang teleseryeng madrama.

Luhaan na namang tumawag ang bilat. Pagod na raw siya. Lagi na raw ginagabi ng uwi ang kaniyang kinakasama. Overtime sa trabaho, sumaglit sa pamilya, gimik ng barkada ang inirarason sa kaniya. Ano na raw ba ang gagawin niya.

Napabuntong-hininga na lang ako. Paano nga ba isalba ang pagsasamang nag-umpisa at patuloy na nabubuhay sa gasgas nang mga linya.

photo from here

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Enchanted Kingdom

click to animate gif

Medyo late na kaming nakarating na magkakaibigan. Masaya na ang mga tao sa loob, kaya't naisipan naming sumali kaagad at humabol sa kasiyahan. Mabagal sa umpisa. Unti-unti ang iyong pag-usad paakyat. Hindi mo mapapansin. Hangga't nasa itaas ka na pala.

At bigla ka na lang bubulusok. Lilipad. Habang lahat ng bagay, in slow motion. Bigla kang dadagsain ng sari-saring emosyon. Saya. Lungkot. Kilig. Takot. At pagdating sa puntong akala mo'y tapos na ito, muli na namang magsisimula ang lahat. Ipinikit ko ang aking mata at itinaas ang mga kamay.

Nang bumaba'y tagaktak na pala ang aking pawis. Basa mula ulong hanggang paa. Humihingal. Tumingala ako't pinagmasdan ang mga sumasayaw na ilaw. "Fireworks!" ang sabi ko sa barkada. Lahat kami'y napatulala nang nakangiti. Bakas sa mukha ang kasiyahan na dulot ng kapirasong E at K.

gif file from here

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Window Shopping

Sobra akong busy sa pagwi-window shopping. Sapatos sa Tod's, kurbata sa Hugo Boss, maong sa A|X, sport shirt sa Fred Perry. Malapit na kasing magtrabaho, may aasahan nang sweldo. Kaya walang ginawa kundi ang mangarap. Tingnan kung saan lulustayin ang perang di pa kinikita.

Araw araw din naman akong umuuwing walang bitbit. Nakukuntento na sa patingin-tingin. Mature na nga siguro ako. Di tulad dati na takaw tingin, bahala na bukas. Pagkadating ko sa tinitirahang building, nagkalat ang mga gamit sa ibaba. May naglilipat, at may mga movers na tumutulong.

Bumukas ang elevator. Mag-isang binuhat at ibinato ni kuya ang nakabalot na queen-sized mattress papasok ng elevator. Akala ko'y mababasag ang mga salamin sa loob. Ganun siya kalakas. Ganun din siya ka-maskulado. Dahil nakabalandra ang kama, isa na lang ang kasya sa loob. Pumasok ako.

Sumara ang pinto ng elevator. Pinagmasdan ko si kuya sa mga salamin. Wala siyang pang-itaas. Ang ganda ng katawan. Masarap haplusin mula dibdib pababa. Gusto kong pindutin ang emergency button at ibalibag ang hubad naming mga katawan sa bagong kama. Nang mabinyagan ba.

Biglang bumukas ang pinto ng elevator. Umibis ako at tumuloy sa flat naming mag-asawa. At tulad ng mga nakaraang araw, umuwi akong walang bitbit. Muling nakuntento na lamang sa patingin-tingin.

photo from here
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