14 December 2010

of natural highs and eliminating lows

As I write this, it's two hours before the final rehearsals for this year's Hagikhikan 2010, or the University of the Philippines Diliman's annual Faculty Follies show where different UPD profs, instructors and lecturers show their lighter side to a bunch of eager colleagues, students, staff and whoever wants to watch teachers make a fool of themselves at the UP Theater.

This was us yesterday as we were rehearsing. Photo from my college film buddy and co-UP Film Institute colleague Melissa:

Hanep!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's soooo happening!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Fraaaaaakkk!!! December 15 3pm and 7pm at the UP Theater.
That's the day I become a Youtube sensation! Wooot :P

I just shook off my pending stage fright this morning by spending two hours at the gym downstairs where I live. Well, it worked! Working out lately has given me a new sense of natural high, one I've been missing for months -- nay, years now, actually. I'm glad to rediscover this, sweating out the bad vibes and kicking in on the endorphin supply to trick my brain and body to feel happy, successfully.

And goddess knows I need new supplies of natural highs these months, 'n
o? Yeah, the universe is telling me... and sending me some. Which is cool. I think.

One such natural high is having meaningful conversations with new friends from abroad, new friends I've been hanging out with lately, young ones who provide me a new sense of kinship in some strange way with the female power of the universe. I always like hanging out with new people regardless of age, as long as they exhibit that emotional maturity that is so lacking in some adults I interact with here. So imagine the breath of fresh air these idealistic youn
g thinkers are providing me. I miss having these kinds of discourses. Not that I'm not getting any from existing friends. It's an addition to that.

Ah yes, friends. That is another natural high I've been honing lately. The support they've been sending me, in any kind and any permutation, is very much welcomed especially during this last quarter of the year. Whether it's a special gym workout, beer buckets in Cubao X, dinner or lunch breaks from work and play, impromptu movie dates, momentary dancing parties, quiet chats over coffee or whatever whether person-to-person or via online means, they're all good, all welcome, all valued. Interactions give me personal highs. I heart my friends.

I guess this college participation thing at the faculty follies is my latest natural high in that regard. And again, goddess knows I need to have more highs in that space at these times. And I'm glad I'm getting it from colleagues, friends and allies there. Or as I'd like to term them, people who are not insecure of me (my intelligence? my beauty? my spunk? my energies? my in-your-face queerness? take your pick!) and therefore do not need or see the need to pull me down or malign me or stab me behind my back. Oh yeah, that's heavy, huh? Well, buy me some drinks and I'll tell y
ou about it sometime heheh...

But I guess that's the thing with having natural highs. I want to have more so I could eliminate lows, such deep lows, that I have been in danger o
f being trapped in. I guess I am thankful to the universe for showing me quite a few comets of opportunities that gave me much-needed inspiration and direction to just be, just act, just take it all in stride, and grab the bull by the horn. Hey, this bull is hearing it, universe. Send some more feelers!

One major low, one that I was expecting to be a low, was the latest pride
march. Sure, it was cool, it was closer, but somewhere along its preparation, I also decided that this should be my last. My last Manila pride march. I don't know; this is a helluva long discourse. Maybe some other time. But this is the reason why I borrowed a friend's DSLR and captured it the way I wanted to, this time digitally. And I got the 1,000+ pictures to fill me with enough memories to live with.

somebody, a friend of a friend, took this kinda stalker photo
of me during pride hahaha. but i love it! it's showing the good work
i've been doing for myself lately. this is the first time after 10 years
that i wore a tank top in public. dig that! i kid you not.
gotta love your own body! :)

No, this doesn't mean I'm dying or moving or whatnot. I just decided. Sometimes, you would know that enough is enough, and one should know when enough is indeed enough. That's called gut feel. And we should trust our bodies more, listen to what it's saying to us about a lot of things because sometimes, our minds don't have a clue and our hearts are just blinded
by emotions, mostly fear. Or maybe insecurity.

I was just talking to a good friend about this last night over some vodka sprite. How do you conquer lows? I shared with her how I've managed to wake up from this decade-long slumber, that my interaction with new people, especially her, roused me up from this deep sleep and made me realize that who I really am is this person that's buried deep down in some emotional quagmire that was suddenly built around me, most times without my consent but sometimes with my permission. And after flagellating myself for letting that happen to me, I came to realize that it's time to take it back, take me back, TAKE THE REAL ME BACK. And thus, I am putting her back in orbit, in circulation, and
whoever wants to hang out in this universe is most welcome to make contact, for it is not an awful waste of space as Carl Sagan once wrote, but it is a reclaiming of a once-awesome space I am reliving in this new time-space continuum we call today.

Yes, sorry I'm a geek lyk dat :P

Welcome to my universe. Feel free to orbit around.
(taken by my sister at the Griffith Observatory
in LA, California April 2010)

Maybe that's all it takes for one to discover one's self again -- having new interactions, new conversations, new ways of looking at old(er) things. That's what's happening to me right now. And recent conversations with former students also affirm me towards that direction. Sometimes it's just so heartwarming to realize how you've taught some of these great kids well, and they're now the ones who are teaching me back the lessons I taught them. Funny that.

Full circle. I love it.

And perhaps other highs to replace some lows will be rolling in in a few weeks or so. Contributing to much appreciated security of sorts in other parts of my life. That's cool. The first one already kicked in, and I hope there's more to come. But that's another blog post altogether.

So there you go. And that's where I am, and that's where I'll be heading, I guess. Like my headline says in DL, I'm just revolving around four-letter words. Whatever those words are, they don't matter, as long as the spirit or essence behind them are the ones ruling me, making me happy, checking my gear in order, guiding me. And they need not be literally taken as well.


Sometimes, there's just too many four-letter words. So we take them one day at a time.

As always.


  1. "So imagine the breath of fresh air these idealistic young thinkers are providing me. I miss having these kinds of discourses. Not that I'm not getting any from existing friends. It's an addition to that."

    Adults lose their most meaningful insights as soon as they step into the real world. I realized this when I looked back at how I wrote back in college...was deeper then than now. Hehe.

  2. that's sooo true! that's also applicable to me heheh. plus there's also the fact that adults do a lot of self-checks even if it's unnecessary most times. stream of consciousness rules! :)

  3. as they say, the corporate world doesn't just kill the activist in us - it obliterates it. well maybe for my case since i work corporate. but am trying to be afloat, not suck it all in.

    being in college is the best time to learn about life, passion, ideals, etc, because you have your studies to be concerned with. once you graduate and work, the concerns shift from ideal to practical. tragic. this is so little prince. but there's always hope for the flowers. hehe. college readings :)nostalgic.

    since you've been working out, running? hehe. i know you said you don't. :)

  4. maybe it's not a tragedy but, ahem, "a reorientation of pragmatism?" aarrggh coping mechanisms. haha! i dunno. :P but like what jo march said in little women, hope and keep busy :)

    haha no i still can't run. just some gym stuff, mostly muscle toning stuff and a bit of treadmill walking. brisk walking at the sports park if i could, and now biking around the academic oval.

  5. i like that reorientation thingy :)

    abt the spam, i had that too. what i did was add filtering to the shoutbox. on the Options menu of Cbox, click Posting options and go to "Anti-spam protection" then check "Require CAPTCHA!". that shd do it :)

  6. beautiful entry! however, i was just wondering if you could provide me with your working definition of "idealistic"? ;)

  7. firewomyn thanks for the spam tip!

    ei staps, by idealistic, i mean "keeping/retaining/sustaining a positive outlook/nurturing an affirmative attitude-slash-"fighting" spirit despite being aware of/having seen the negativity around and hoping to turn these things around" or something to that effect. cool? ;P