Archive for December, 2011

A Dream

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on December 15, 2011 by Tales from UPD

These are times when doubt and worry must be shed away, for the time being at least, but something happened in which I must inevitably put a considerable amount of attention to. You see, dear reader, that I had a dream, a dream like any other mind you, but a dream about whom I have a profound attachment to. I have to share my thoughts on this blog so that the people concerned may know what I have to say about them.

I woke up finding myself in my hometown. It was apparently the Season, as is now, and the town proper was busy with people. Forgive me, dear reader, but even though the dream came just before I woke up this morning I am having trouble remembering all that happened ( partly the reason for my chagrin when writing about dreams). Nevertheless, I remembered going to a food stall with my brother to buy a full order of noodles. As it happened, my chemistry teacher from my third year in high school was there, too, with what I can vaguely remember as a mug full of halo-halo in her hands. She was wearing a velvet blouse with light pink flowers printed all over it, and pink woolen pants (in reality I know her to possess clothing of the sort, which she sometimes wore during class). She looked glad, quite far-fetched from the stressed face imposed upon her by the very unfortunate circumstances in the classroom, even blissful, if I might judge. Wanting to give her my best wishes for the Season, I told my brother to wait for the noodles while I talked to my former teacher.

Ma’am, kumusta na po kayo? I suddenly blurted out behind her. She was considerably surprised, but wasn’t cross with me since she remembered me as being one of her former students. We talked for quite a long time, about my life in the University, and her life as, well, a teacher. On the course of our conversation, she laughed so hard at a comment I made about her salary that she almost dropped her mug of halo-halo. I noticed immediately that her fingers where already blackened ( she had an ailment, the identity of which I DO NOT dare ask. She already has much stress as it is, so there’s no point in reminding her about it.). I was concerned. In reality, I did try many times to persuade her to lighten her load ( by no means coercive, mind you, it was a sort of “jokingly serious matter” when we talked about it). In my dream, as in reality, I once again tried to tell her to give up her advisory class, in a tone I never would’ve used at her in reality. Somehow, she wasn’t at all surprised or even angry. Instead, she told me that she wanted what she was doing and she has known no other way (what that meant I may never figure out).

I fear that discussing too much details would be a great disrespect to one of the best I have ever known to practise the noble profession of teaching. It is a profession, just like many other important things in life, that we fail to recognize the significance of. Practised by a person with the right mix of knowledge, skill, and devotion, this profession will prove to have the most significant effect on anyone,and maybe, just maybe, everyone’s life.

I take my leave.

Out for the Season

Posted in Uncategorized on December 14, 2011 by Tales from UPD

‘Tis the time. The season to which the timeless words of  “joy and cheer” refer to. To some who keep the Faith, a time of full devotion, for it is the birth of Someone very special. To many, a time of presents and gifts of material value. But for most, a time to move back to where they truly belong, home.

Home. A word all-too familiar, yet a truth we will most definitely cannot do without. As a very important song to me puts it, a home is ” where your love has always been enough for me…” (whomever comes into mind for the word “your” is up to you.). It is a place that for most is a safe haven, void of hate, full of completion and acceptance. It is where one can truly find a measure of bliss, even if at times there is tension even at the home itself. Nevertheless, a home will never reject you, it embodies the love and determination of your parents to give you a chance to live, and more importantly, to love. A home is a mother, always ready to share your joys and sorrows, to whom we find satisfaction in times of hunger, reassurance in times of turmoil, and resolution in times of doubt.

When I was but a child (and truth be told, I am still a child, but I have learned a few more than I did then), I seldom thought of home. I was busy with other trivial things yet at the time were matters of seemingly great importance to me. My mind always seemed to be preoccupied with such matters as who ran faster than me, or whether or not the one I had feelings for felt the same way, and yes, I know, that these instances cannot be helped. After all, we all have times of seemingly blissful ignorance. But I learned, and is still am, learning a great deal more about myself than I ever did before, and in the course of that growth, a profound respect for anything and everything that will come in my way, and of course, for where I came from. Suffice to say that you, the reader, will have to forgive me for this selfishness in which I must indulge myself in. After all, I have to attend to these simple, yet immensely important things in my life. Mind you that the time of crushes and vanities is, for me at least, a time of the past. Now, and as will always be, this season will an opportunity to reflect on what has been, what is being, and what needs to be done. And of course, dear reader, I will get back to you when I must, for even in holidays work is ever-present, as in compliance with the rules of life. Be it what you may, but you too must fly, for you have your own story to write, a new chapter that promises to be one of the most fulfilling chapters in the end of this twelve-month year-book of your life.

As for me, well, my chapter is just like billions of others, I do not know as of the moment what to write in it. Anyway, time will always tell the story. It’s up to you on how you will write about it. But, one things for certain, In the seventeenth book of my life, I will know how to start twelfth chapter.

I’m going home.

The Salesman Dilemma

Posted in Tell-tales from UPD on December 8, 2011 by Tales from UPD

He watched them as they took a whiff of the stuff and coughed their lungs out. What the hell do these guys like about these things?; he thought, throwing away the stick they gave as he tried to get a grip of himself. “Honestly guys, get a life” he mumbled under his breath. Feigning urgency, he told them he had to go. ” Guys, it’s already nine o’ clock, I have got to go, so you can take these damn things and stick them to your gut for all I care, just leave me out of-“; a sudden burst of panic cut short what he was about to say. He really had something to worry about. After composing himself, he stood up and left James and Tristan, who were still smoking their lungs off at the foot of the stairs.

Damn, I really gotta get that reading or I’ll be…well, damned. He looked at his wristwatch. I really ought to clean this thing. Wait, what the hell am I saying? I’ve got to focus! Pull yourself together, you poor, sad idiot. If only you’ve…. He stopped and took a moment to figure out what he was thinking. Was he really worried more about his watch than about the time?  This is not happening to me, he thought, almost aloud. Kindly pull yourself together, dear sir, or else you’ll have nothing to show for all this talk of doing a better semester, capiche? That shook him. He looked at his watch again. Nine-forty, right, on it. And he was off to the photocopier upstairs.

At 11:35, he was in front of a class, yapping about things called assumptions, but his mind was busy juggling some other topics. “I’m sorry about my hand writing…”; Yeah, right, and what are syllogisms? “An assumption is…”; Damn, I pray to God I’m not the only one without a copy of the “Death of a Salesman”, I’ll be gutted out for sure. “…and that’s what an assumption is.”; Logic is such a load of bull, my brain hurts just thinking about that test. He sat down, and looked at the time.  Only ten minutes? My freakin’ report only took about ten minutes? God, I must be losing my mind. My brain hurts. And so he spent the rest of the class thinking about a salesman, his oncoming test on logic, and two women, one in a place called Laguna and the other in a semi-obscure corner of the Philippines called Marinduque.

The class ended and he went straight to the College of  Arts and Letters. He was confident now, because this one was in the bag. He was already ‘in the know’ about what they were going to discuss, thanks to some last-minute ‘research’. He had hope to borrow a copy from one of his classmates in creative writing, but what the heck, he found another, more pocket-friendly solution.

Two hours before, in front of a photocopying machine, he took a look out a of a window. He went into one of those “moments” when he felt that he had the world all to himself. It’s a bit like insanity, although he swears to himself that he’s sane (although we all have some bit of insanity in ourselves, don’t we? So this is his ‘particularity’, for the lack of any word), and that he is completely conscious of his surroundings, even the birds that seem to be flying in slow motion, and the sounds around him being muffled somehow…

“Hello? Sir? Hello? What do you need?”. He fell out of his daze. He hadn’t realized that he was the one being talked to by the photocopy lady, who was by this time getting annoyed. It seemed that everyone in this university had their own measure of importance, some measure of discontentment in their own tales of life. Anyhow, he had the presence of mind tell the lady what he wanted. “Death of a Salesman” please, Professor Quina, if you may”. But something was off. The lady didn’t start browsing through the papers immediately, as she usually does. He braced for what the she had to say. “Sir, Professor Quina just pulled out those readings earlier…” Crap. “…but he left a new set, that you might be interested in.” He looked in horror at the title of the paper at the top of that lump of readings: “Magnificence” by Estrella Alfon. Once again, he looked at his watch. Ten o’ clock.

A few minutes later, he was on a jeepney, on the way to the College of Mass Communication.