I say there are only two things constant in this world: change, and my life in a perpetual state of disorder. Often I dive deep into this gigantic and unforgiving self-pity sinkhole. I am old and ugly and essentially as useful as my mom’s appendix. Oh right, she doesn’t even have one.
Isn’t life like an endless game of Tetris? Whenever all the blocks fall into place, they also always automatically disappear.
But ah, it is what it is. I just think of victories: clean floors, a new job, the free tuition law. I take a warm shower. I go out and buy groceries, drive to the liquor store for a six-pack, then go home only to be greeted by my roommate as I unpack the produce out of the reusable bag.
“You’re having a party?” she asks, intrigued by the cake and the bottles of Alley Kat on the counter.
“No,” I answer. “They’re just for me.” Stuck in my larynx is a self-deprecating joke that dare not come out.
She reminds me that I will be alone for the night. She hands me a Häagen Dazs bar before leaving and I head to my room, a bottle of beer in one hand and a platito of cake on the other. The ice cream remains in the freezer.
I plan to read John Berger’s Ways of Seeing and anything by Susan Sontag. Some other day, not tonight.
I realize that I am in constant search for something to read and re-read.
“The best books are meant to be read more than once,” V said a long time ago. Patti Smith, Oscar Wao, and poetry. Ronaldo Tinio has kept me company through the years and so has Benilda Santos. I envy friends who have had them as mentors.
I listen to Quest and to Ang Bandang Shirley. I listen to “Maginhawa” over and over and over. I miss our old apartment. The memories are becoming a haze: the people, the places, the stories. I need to write to remember.
(Also, I need to be a better writer.)
My eyes are tired. I put on Friends to lull me to sleep, “The One with Mac and CHEESE.” I shut the world and find solace in the laugh track. This too shall pass, I tell myself, refusing to let go of the deep long sigh caged in my chest.
The featured image is Edward Hopper’s Morning Sun.