Still Distracted

I was home earlier than usual and a tiny part of me was hopeful I could finally publish a post or two in my drafts folder. The coherent ones, you know? But after business-related communications (naks, see, my little online bookshop is making traction plus some Cooperative training opportunities), my fingers found themselves typing Netflix.

My watch list has a lot of unfinished episodes because my attention span has always been really short when presented with plenty of options. I finished the 4th episode of Broadchurch though. It’s been on my list for a time and only managed to start it when the Jodie Whitaker news hit. Right now as I type the half of my screen is playing the pilot episode of The 100. Heard a lot of great stuff about it beyond the book. My motivation to finally start? Been seeing The 100 Funko pops! Hahaha!

I need to be in bed in 45 minutes so let’s see what other “crazy” shenanigans I go into. Grabe, this life. Pero happy naman ako. Hahaha! How are you today?

Steady

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It’s been a long time since I felt this kind of steady, this kind of calm. I cannot fully say I’m over whatever demons I got because that’s an entire encyclopedia of conversation to dabble in, so I’m enjoying each day as it comes.

The desire to go is still there and I think it’s never gonna go away. Maybe it was sidetracked a bit because of people. My kind of introversion sometimes finds solace from being pulled in by people. And finding someone to potentially victimize, errrr, fall in love with must have contributed. Whatever it is, I’m not daring to poke the fragile balloon. Not when I’m kinda enjoying life again.

No Reading No Care

No Reading No Care.

Except not completely.

It’s a new high for my reading slump this year. The other difference is that I do not feel as bothered by it. I thought developing an affinity for comic books and graphic novels will offset the lack of novels in my reading progress, but turns out 2017 is just not a reading year for me. And it’s okay.

Of course this desire will never ever go away. As in other pursuits, this feeling taught me that it’s okay to go with what I feel like doing and not stick to what I’ve been accustomed to. What it gives is an opportunity for me to miss the activity and something for me to look forward to doing in the future.

But the itch to buy is another matter. These tweets were in the last 48 hours. I have not sold a lot in my online store yet I’ve been getting more than what I have let go. Which is not new to you, if you’ve been following me long enough.

I can channel my overall indifference into plunging into reading but real life hardly agrees. Thus my wish, which I believe have always been mine, since I became an adult:

 

Picasso Once More

My mother requested for a city staycation because we lost our power supply last Thursday night and we were told it won’t be fixed soon. As soon as we left for the hotel, my uncle messaged us that the electricity was restored. Ang galing di ba? This kind of sudden gastusan makes me wanna pull my hair out of my head, but I realized, nanay ko naman ito, that I will also be enjoying it, and hello, I  can shell out more for toys and collectibles (my new crack — but that’s for another entry), so why not just enjoy this stay?

My go-to booking app for hotels has been Agoda since 2015. So far, I got good rates and no hidden charges upon checkout. For this weekend, I chose to stay in Picasso Boutique Serviced Residences. First stayed there in 2011 and went back again late last year. It’s the cheapest option considering the location — smack dab in Salcedo Village, a few steps away from Salcedo Market if you opt to stay on a weekend, and walking distance to great restaurants and convenience stores.

FullSizeRender 2 I also like their gym! It occupies two floors, loft-style. They have the basic gym equipment, almost identical than the ones we have in the office gym. I went twice and I was almost alone both times so it worked well (pa-unsocial kunyari) for me. Iba din pala ang feeling when you have a not-so high view of the Makati BCD landscape. A breather from trees and waves of the Manila Bay breakwater, hehe.

We got the very same room we stayed at last time so it feels familiar. Hehehe. The first two stays I was with R, this time with my mom, and with the comfort this hotel gave me, pwede bang next time, jowa naman? Hahaha!

If I don’t let my kuripot side guilt-trip me over small luxuries like this, I can get used to this. It’s like getting a massage or a good mani-pedi We did not go far but seeing that we’re in something different can do good to the body and soul (whaaaat). I will do this again soon.

Say It

Someone shared this tweet of a fictional character over Twitter. So timely.

No matter how loud, how “confident”, how put-together someone appears to be, you must not forget that asking someone out still requires a certain amount of courage. It’s a form of putting one’s head on the chopping block. Remember Anna Scott’s question to Will Thacker?

The thing with a yes or no question is that it could go either way only. So when you find yourself saying no, sometimes in the form of not saying anything, still be kind. And still be there. Do not go away. You might change your mind. Even if you don’t, when the dust settles (aka when the question/invite/expectation stops), you may even get a laugh out of it. Life’s like that.

If you find yourself receiving yet another no, sometimes in the form of not saying anything, understand and accept, and still be kind. Still be there, but not in an insistent kind of way. Do not go away; there is nothing wrong in asking. You might change your mind and find yourself not wanting to ask anymore. When the dust settles, you may even get a laugh out of it. Life’s like that.

One day, you will muster the courage to ask again and you will get that elusive yes.

Same Page

I no longer like the guy I pined for in the last two-and-a-half years. I checked and waited if it will change for about a week when I first felt the “meh.” Now it’s not just confirmed. It’s confeeeeeermed. And it’s a wonderful thing. My prayers were answered. I can say that our feelings for each other are now mutual. We are now on the same page. 😂

Two-Prong

Some say in order to know someone’s or something’s real worth you have to detach yourself from it. Whether by choice or you were made to, doesn’t matter, so long as you take that certain amount of time away from what you’re used to.

After the break, you will realize how burnt out you were. That purging something out of your system was an awesome idea. From there you can start fresh. See familiar things in a clearer, more rejuvenated lens. You will also find yourself thinking, “Oh my, I missed this.”

Or…you will feel how much you’ve wanted to be out of it all along. That the break you took was the catalyst, your push, that without it you’d probably still be there until you — unconsciously — continue to self-sabotage by doing things out of character (does not make it neither negligible nor justified) because maybe, deep down you really just want to be out of there. That your occasional social media statuses of discontent for years were signs that if culled can provide a clearer picture than an actual long-ass declaration.

Perhaps you’ve just reached the threshold. There’s nothing wrong with it. Other people felt it way earlier. As an adult though, there are considerations and concessions. And this is where common sense and passion must gel extremely well before taking any crucial step.

At this juncture, it is more agonizing because you already have figured out what you do not want, and there’s no way to deny it, you can only delay what you want to do about it. As compared to when you haven’t really mulled it over, you can simply chuck it to needing a break or forgetting it exists when little changes come or a reward is reaped. Now it’s no longer an elephant in the room. It’s an actual looming feeling day after day. Fear of the economic unknown creeps in, too, just to spice it up. 
What a stressful but very interesting time to be in.

More Books, More Fun – The Online Store!

After years of planning it in my head, I woke up one morning with a desire to find some of my books a new home. I thought of it as early as when I discovered I bought duplicate titles not on purpose, and when I visited storage boxes and having had no memory at all of buying some books (the dreaded “Meron na pala ako nito???” bookhoarder lapse.)

Thus the birth of More Books, More Fun. I am used to managing Facebook pages but it turns out handling a virtual shop isn’t all I easily thought it would be. I’m having fun though, don’t get me wrong!

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My small bookshop in the vast Facebook sphere.

I uploaded close to 300 books and truth be told, they didn’t make a noticeable dent. In time. After almost three weeks, sales are picking up, and by the end of June I may just donate the ones left unsold. The reason for this is, no matter how insignificant the space they made in our tiny home, there’s no returning to shelves or boxes anymore. There’s a plan to do another do-over of the books that didn’t make the “ibebenta na ba kita?” cut, and a tiny part of me is excited.

Parting is so bittersweet, you know? This may seem so dramatic, and I know it is. For one, a friend who can only shake her head with my hoarding once told me good thing I don’t move every two to three years. It’s gonna be hard to hoard with that kind of lifestyle. While it was fun, when the reality of urban living hits you hard, you really have to.

So if you are into welcoming second hand books for reasonable prices, please visit the page and drop a comment or two!

Maybe Next Time, Marathon.

In a few hours the class of 2017 of The Bull Runner University will officially run their first (or second) marathon and a small part of me (yes, there is a small part of me) is sad that I won’t be a part of it.

I signed up for the TBR Dream Marathon back in August. The motivation was laughable and shallow, although I don’t include it in my reasons why I’m not joining the event. I was wait-listed and then got in in a space of two days, paid the fee the next day, and the week after that, I started going to the office gym. It was a very good start.

The next weeks saw me in my regular running routine. Pikit-mata, I invested in a Garmin and in more decent workout clothes — before that, my “workout” clothes were the free singlets from the races I joined in years ago. I read on techniques and training schedules. Like many first-timers, I worked on my stability and endurance and planned on my speed next. I did not get to the focusing on my speed this time! part because, well, my routine started crumbling down.

Before it did, I managed to run one 16km and one 22km. Slow but nonetheless successful. My biggest achievement there was not feeling overly exhausted — hey, I was sllooooowww) and was able to go to work the next day as if nothing happened.

On the first week of December, I got acute gastroenteritis (that SM Aura restaurant and their lousy handling of greens was my culprit, haha) and was unable to train for a week. After that, the holiday season was in full swing and it was also a busier time at work, so I didn’t go back to training. In hindsight, they were all excuses. Then January came. I could have gone full blast in training to make up for it, hey I even found a shortened training calendar leading up to February 19, but the momentum came crashing down. It was disheartening but it was a battle I was sure I already lost.

I paid for runs to cover long distance training for January and February, but had to sell them. Good thing I was able to! Sayang din yun pera, ha.

Then just when I thought I was just extremely undertrained, and perhaps, I can still go and run on marathon day (the cutoff was 9 hours after all!), I was faced with a more serious medical emergency that totally put my marathon plans off the table. I was even scheduled sana to join a mountain hike so as not to feel bad for missing the marathon but even that was prohibited. My take is I am really not meant to do any physical activities during this period.

Anyway, I know it’s not going to be the only opportunity to run 42km. If the chance presents itself, I know I’m not going to be a total noob anymore. I did not regret the time and money I spent in the past months, even with a whisper in some hidden space in my heart that I won’t be able to do it anyway. In fact, one of  the things I miss is the great feeling after working out. I thought that sluggishness was endemic in my system but apparently it’s not! Hahaha! If only for that as a basic motivation, it might be great to poke the territory again.

For now I can only wish that all the marathon dreamers finish strong and safe. I was witness to the amount of hardwork and dedication they had. The friendship they formed is also something to be proud of. Perhaps someday, I’ll meet them, and it would be nice if it’s at a marathon route. Let’s see!

Where I Ate: Bacolod’s RIBSHACK and LORD BYRON’S

I recently went to Bacolod and one of the highlights of my trip was indulging in the back ribs craze of the city. I love meat and a big bonus in Bacolod is that their food there is relatively cheaper. And it’s not as if they scrimp on size and taste because oh boy, they don’t.

I scoured food blogs about Bacolod and back ribs were popular posts. I tried two of the more popular ones and was so impressed.

First, Ribshack. I read it’s originally from Cebu and opened its first branch in the city in SM Bacolod. The one I tried is in the 2nd floor Food Court of 888 Chinatown Mall which is very near the inn I stayed at. Ribshack also offers other grilled foods like chicken and fish, but ribs are, of course, their specialty. My Instagram post said it all.

The next day I specifically hunted Lord Byron’s newest branch nearer the city proper. Lord Byron’s original and bigger one is in Homesite which is a place I haven’t gone to, but a jeepney destination anyway (which is one of the best things in Bacolod, imho, mobility-wise — almost all places can be reached via jeepney!).

I went to pray at the Redemptorist Church and walked a few minutes and found its location in San Agustin Street (basically an extension of the street opposite Colegio San Agustin – so if you see the school, turn right and you’re near the restaurant). A bigger landmark — Riverside Hospital. The restaurant is beside other dessert places which are also very popular in the city.

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Another shot of my Lord Byron’s plate. Partnered it with cold Pepsi Max for good measure. This ribs meal plate is 159 pesos only.   

More than sumptuous chicken dishes, Bacolod is also strong in the backribs restaurant game. 🙂

 

 

 

Lunch Joke

I hardly regret the amount I spend on food and books. My taste in food is also very easy to please unless onions are involved. However there are days that will get you. See, I paid 100 pesos for this plate of food. You can tell how the serving is as I put a bill beside it. Hindi talaga makatarungan minsan. And it’s not as if it’s melt in your mouth liempo. 

Some say when I complain about how much something costs it just means I am not its target market. I agree with that but this joke of a lunch is to me a clear exception. 😂

Tolerance is not Indifference

I would like to think I am tolerant but not indifferent.

These are two different traits which are prone to be muddled when you are perceived to not care about, well, many things. I do care, it’s just that it’s a personal preference to let people live their own lives. When you apply it to family and close friends, it can very well be misconstrued as indifference. Deadma. Kebs. Walang pakialam, walang puso, to an extent, walang utang na loob. Hurtful, in a way.

I can give my thoughts on issues and situations but I deliberately make it a point to leave the last decision or conclusion to whoever I am talking to. How to move on from a breakup? Here are my thoughts based on what I know about your situation BUT up to you. Do you think I can do this? I think I do, BUT ikaw, you decide if you really want to. I read a blood relation on a warpath in social media — I ask if he/she is okay and perhaps may wanna tone it down BUT then again, bahala ka kung anong gusto mong gawin.

I may be crazy chatty and noisy and jokingly condescending but my closest friends know it’s all for fun. I personally do not feel comfortable having a say on someone’s life other than my own. At the end of the day, buhay mo yan. That’s just my reason for my being perceived as walang pakialam when the jokes are over. Maybe sometimes I overdo it that they think I just choose to forget. Well, minsan (lol), but I notice things, I hear laments, I read about situations — so my conscious and subconscious do know, I just choose not to react. The bahala ka sa buhay mo in a good way, you know what I mean? Of course, it’s common sense that when danger or a threat is looming, that becomes a different story.

More importantly, and this is where it becomes “complicated” allegedly, I simply do not want the same done to me. Tricky, as many will say (had said!) akala mo kung sino na ako na hindi na pwedeng sabihan. THAT’S NOT IT. Iba ‘yon. You have the freedom to speak to me, but to take them in, ako na ‘yon.

Life isn’t supposed to be a quid pro quo stance all the time. But I don’t opine on your life so I respectfully request you not give unsolicited advice and pass them off as what’s best for me.

I have a very limited number of people whom I allowed to have a clout in my life. My mother tops this list. Even then, it’s not completely true — because I only ultimately decide what I want, when I want to do it, and why. It’s really very simple. Harmlessly simple.