Wednesday, May 30, 2007

What About the Death of Thirty Thousand Fishes?

thirty thousand fishes is a working title of a current pastime where I try to recollect all the memories of a past that had probably inked into my consciousness forever. That past was so powerful and vivid and I thought it was worth coming up with a story initially but the experience had seen me writing a good number of words, paragraphs, chapters and so on. . . am posting the pambungad of an experiment I started for about two years now. . .an experiment which seems to last a lifetime. . .

What about the death of thirty thousand fishes?

It marked the end of a smooth sailing passage into life’s tumultuous moments.
The bulwark of water coming from the water pump reflects the silver moon that hanged in the night. It was way past midnight and my father and I were busy salvaging the repugnant breathing of every fish that’s populating the pond. The froth created by the endless panting by the little fishes was creating an enormous white island in the middle of the pond. My father was standing still at the bank which made me chill more with the damp and cold wind passing from the north. He was a resolute man; resolute and firm. This was summer and he knew very well the danger that is brought by the season.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Muning reads Umibe no Kafuka

I heeded to the call of Mr. George Moore. . . Muning got to read Murakami’s Umibe no Kafuka and her reaction was like “the pregnant cat was caught wobbling around under a ‘violent, metaphysical, symbolic storm’” Her master joined her: “indeed Muning. . .indeed!”

The rawness of the thoughts of Haruki Murakami; fresh from his subconscious tunnels delivered me somewhere in between the linen bed sheet and the protruding lumps of cotton appearing from a century-old foam bed. I was like hidden from the real world down into the recesses of an unknown world where cockroaches, their eggs, and gazillion of dust moths dance to the rhythm of the movement of lovers carousing their night away on the comfort of this love-bed and the melodious howling produced by a filth of satisfaction. On the warm night of July 25th, I was like thrown away from this world to get to know my repressed thoughts. . .of why a recurring dream during my seventh year of existence hounded me like a persistent apparition behind the enormous acacia tree at noon day; of why I’m so obsessed with slippers and the filth it produces at the end of the day after liters of perspiration stuck and blended to the smell of rubber. . .of why I took psychology in college at the peril of my lifetime’s security. (And by reading Kafka on the Shore all of this mystery was unlocked? . . .and with the effect of an opened Pandora’s box?) No. Actually, all of the mystery just remained in me. They are still there turning the confusing pattern of a mosaic into an infinite and changing and swirling and drowning mirages of color, shapes, etc. like what your kaleidoscope is doing. (I’m a bit confused!) Likewise, the world is but a metaphor. And so don’t fret.

There’s always transference in reading Murakami like no other book has hit me. And after reading Kafka, I never hesitated to peek more into Murakami’s subconscious thoughts like knowing my own. Slipped into Norwegian Wood, drowned myself in Wind-up Bird Chronicle, and soberly squeezed the life of next month’s budget to satisfy such weird addiction. . . and I am more happy, happy and satisfied.

A critic of Murakami’s prose alleged that there’s excessive profundity and name-check. . .of him joining the fanatical bandwagon of authors’ using titles that strike a note among readers. . . The Da Vinci Code, The Dante Club. . .blah, blah, blah could be the ponderings to achieve a marketing ploy. On why she finds Umibe no Kafuka “a book most certainly obscured by weeds and metaphorical ferns” is not in itself a mystery. ( Almost all readers admitted they were lost. Mine was like that experienced by Satoru Nakata when he saw the silver light in the sky and fell into a deep sleep and the whole period of amnesia and fantasy after that. Murakami told in an interview that his novel is one full of riddles. But the critic insisted, if this is one of riddles. . .the answer to this riddle is a riddle and the riddle a riddle and so on. And as to why she’s persistent is quite evident in her choice of character: Hoshino. Yes, more than Kafka and Satoru and the talking cats.

On why I love this book more than anything else is because it defines heaven amidst doldrums. I can definitely say that in a degree of transference this one has traveled the long journey from the hidden part of the iceberg to the obvious and patent. And who will give his second thoughts in empathizing with Kafka’s reason. “There’s a void inside me, a blank that is slowly expanding, devouring what’s left of who I am. I can hear it happening.” We will always be prone to the subconscious pull and it would be often trampling upon logic and norm. The result would be gawkish more likely and you would be more likely to detest it unless you see, at the least, some subconscious outbursts to be normal and useful. Unless one would heed to Kafka’s resolve : “I head for the core of the labyrinth, giving myself up to the void.”

“I probably won’t.” said the pregnant cat. “I’ve been there before and my memory of it is quite murky and hostile.”

“The writer seems to hate cats and likes felicide.”

No. Actually, he’s a fan of your type that’s why you’re always a part of every story he makes.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

An Apostasy to Mr. Gump's Creed

I rubbed my eyes in clear disgust over my clock’s hostility. It’s the 16th of May and I never had an all-night’s sleep but it’s time to get up again and prepare my body for another ordinary day. An enormous cat bristles over the the rooftop of our neighbor’s house signaling that everybody’s up except for indolent beings who remain undaunted by the day’s requirements. I shouted at the cat aghast over his overbearingness of the laid-back life of the animalia kingdom. “You may never know Mr. Cat but destiny may betray you. There’s this news last night that there’s a shortage of meat in the city!” . . .(only to be embarrassed) The cat shouted back in shrill voice: “How are you today? You look grumpy and pale!”

Mr. Cat clearly scored against me. I may never know he is rejoicing at the back of his head. A fact is never understated by those who never had insecurities like Mr. Cat.

Sometimes, or if I may say always, we hoped and prayed for the better. But destiny-wise, many hoped and ended up dying in hope. Life’s philosophy, that according to Mr. Gump, is oblivious and all but passe. True, life is like a box of chocolates. But most of the time it’s only the box that’s left and you’re down to choose from empty and crumpled foils.

Today, the schizophrenic who always passes by our office was in a tight-fit denim shorts. As usual, he does his routine relentlessly: walking to and from his area; the corners of the veranda. He’s thinking deep and prostrate. I could only wish for his sanity. But his tics confronted me intuitively. “The world’s getting bigger and better,” he jostled.

“Tell me, is happiness pervasive there?”

Monday, May 14, 2007

On Atty. T's Pedantry and Cannibalism

I just don’t know what happened today. It’s just queer finding myself infront of many people looking very stupid, very, very stupid; as if I’m the only one who doesn’t know what’s happening. As if I’m in front of learned people-inquiring about what happened, which I totally forgot in broad daylight. The moment I stood up my body is in terminal trepidation. As if I am very much frozen in the arctic chill of Agnus. I don’t know if someone or something poked me insisting that I will never answer the question correctly. I grabbed my book leafed through the pages quickly, looking to the provisions in wanderlust. I wandered in wonder.
The teacher recited all that happened: “blah, blah, blah. . ..” She was there ignoring all portents that foretell of a sudden mishap. She was there sitting on the royal chair assuming power or kingdomship in an ephemeral space. She gazed imposingly at me to kneel down before her majesty. She gloated at every yes, at every no. She sounded blabber in my thought. Does this pedantic woman remember anything about the social web? That strictness would result to perversion? She kept me standing there for the whole period; taking charge of the flip-flop drama flick of the night. She manipulated all of the consequences and the laughs and the curses. “Disorientation prevents me from your arrogant assertion.” That it is easy to know if Art. 1357 and Art. 1358 will apply when you already mastered what is a valid contract and what is an unenforceable contract. She always mutters that with a devilish grin intruding up to the recesses of your soul and the privacy of your consciousness. “Here, all is prone to being eaten alive. We are all cannibals in our own simple way.”

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Summer's Ending

The smell of rain constantly effuses a feeling that resembles those days in June. This is not the rainy season maybe but the drizzle for three consecutive days makes us feel that we’re up to days of tripping down damp passages and eternal longing for lukewarm baths. The teacher said it was too early for summer’s ending and that if there are really sunny days to speak of for the past months this should not be the time to end it. He has a scheduled vacation in
Palawan next week he boasts. And everybody was envious of course.

Back at home, the memory of summer’s ending is quite downbeat. It was like a mourning of the complete departure of solitary walks to feel the coarseness of the warm sand during afternoons and the endless dipping in the brackish waters of the nearby river during high tide. It was also because of the grown fear of tempests that brought long days of heavy rains and the necessary in-door predilections that breathe a momentary discreet attitude among souls. Continuous outpouring would make dams overflowing with rain water and because we’re near the outlet rivers our lives became prone to soak-yourself-in-floodwaters-in-eternity life. Part-smile and part-frown for the devastation and it makes us love the place more. I don’t know why.

Once in days of childhood, an enormous water spout that visited the community ravaged some houses and uprooted some of late Tinio’s bananas at the back of his house. I saw him came close to the water spout with his bolo swinging in the air like a desperate man trying to outdo the troop of hundreds with his lone bolo in a heroic stance: fighting to death. I confessed such incident to my mother hoping that she would do something to cure Tinio’s psychosis. She only responded with cracks of laugh. I came to know that such is not a sign of madness it was an attempt to shatter the swirling water spout.

There is more to the memories of the start of the rainy days.

But, could the premature downpour be brought by global warming? Oh, and there’s the little child surmising the indelible fact of divinity in the offing. Oh I see, yours is a life of dreams and comic interpretation of phenomena that beat old wisdom and false truths in this world.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

V for Vertigo

Not V in the movie V for Vendetta, the champion of the oppressed in 21st century England (minus the bloody way of vindicating oppression, one just hopes that there would also be a staunch V who would tame ineptitude in the government), but V for vertigo.

Vertigo is the sickness you feel when you’re already pissed off with the sing-songy slogans of politicians running for elective posts this coming elections which bounds from the outmost to the idyllic good. Call them great talkers! Some say they’re pro-poor but, how could anybody believe him when the cheapest value of the things that clothe his being is P20,000++. Some say they’re pro-labor when their big corporations are the blatant violators of labor laws – offering below minimum wage rates and not complying to other minimum labor standards laws. Some say they’re pro youth- and as one senatoriable fervently insists , she’s the voice of the youth (probably the one who’s deaf-mute) not to mention the vendors, women, men, and cats and fishes and worms and leeches like she is, etc. – when in her past terms she hasn’t authored any law or bill on the sectors she’s allegedly advocating. Sycophants! I just wish they would all disappear; all these faux and living paradox in our time.

Election season in the Philippines exudes the most tragic of comedies where the price of even the lowest of positions in the minutest political unit is blood. Elections also make the most comic of characters among candidates. I went home last weekend and was entertained by the campaign slogans of local politicians. One says he’s the “Big Brother” of his kailians. Did he ever come across George Orwell’s 1984? I hope he does not mean what he say. Another lady who posed like a toothpaste model in her ad with all the glittering teeth carries the slogan “Lokin Good” and she runs for Congress. Whoda! Guess why? (Correct!) Her family name is Lokin.

And the cherry of the cake is no less than the COMELEC itself. How tragic! And now the pooped Abalos and the stern-looking Borja might want to do their respective mea culpas for making the most fatal of errors in the interpretation of the law; for “veritably advocating a system of blind voting” according to the Supreme Court in its recent decision declaring as unconstitutional the non-disclosure of nominees of party-list groups seeking representation in Congress. And now, last Saturday in the Inquirer you can make out why such reluctance on the part of Abalos is so. . .his brother Dr. Arsenio Abalos is a nominee of a certain party-list group representing tricycle drivers 0_0 Whoda??? Oh, and there’s General Palparan under the party-list group BANTAY!!!(er, Salakay?) Everbody’s suddenly scared.

Most people I’ve talked with tell about finding themselves in tangle between the devil and the deep sea. According to them, when you’re in a dilemma like this choose the lesser evil.

* * *
Special Thanks to Kuya Cabo (kah-boh)
Not the prohibited act under the Labor Code nor the namesake/pseudonym of those in the progressive block. Kuya Cabo is Rommel Santos, the in-house graphic designer/lay-out artist of PHSSA, the kantatero/guitarero of Emanon, the hunk, the former frustrated lover, now the beau of various Chinese women, the certified PHSSA-jester now in exile in Shanghai, and the designer of my blogger header, a close friend.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Trail-Walking Sagada

It took us six hours and a half of convoluting trails to reach a dreamy and solitary place. In between miles, a constant yearning arouses in my mind a distant and moribund thought. The unending visions of a sad and gloomy memory take me back to a commune which had complicitly made this return trip part of a piece in a resultant and conspiring circle.My travel companion woke up to ask in curiosity if the trip would be for eternity as the bus slowed down to submit and traverse a sharp curve. The whispering wind would tell us later on that this trip was indeed for eternity.The bus parked beside a lonesome inn devoid of any soul and spirit. I knew that beneath those yearning souls lie buried in the earth forgotten memories of tranquility and comfort. A friend once told that the feeling could never be explained because it will always be forbidden. And indeed as we walked, passed tombs and epitaphs that remind corporeal beings how life recedes into whitewashed graves, a tender feeling gently harps into the unaffecting heart which would inevitably allow a person to ask to himself if the moment would endure.Yes, the moment would endure. . . forever. It clings steadfastly among barren worlds like mine reverberating the height of the experience into one soulful and nostalgic dance.