Archive for April, 2007


Sick.

Now I know there’s really something wrong with me.  I wrote about being wilted the other day, and hoped that bath and sleep will make me feel better.  It didn’t.  I left the office early today because I felt like I was running a fever.  Lagnat sa loob (fever that’s not quite coming out) was more like it.  I had cold, clammy hands and feet, but the rest of my body was so hot, though according to my officemates my neck and forehead didn’t feel hot when they touched it.  I still have that something in-between dizziness and a headache.  I feel a little bit better when I’m out of the air conditioning.  Based on the thermometer, I have normal temperature, but I still feel like I’m emitting so much heat.

My dad’s first instinct was to bring me to the doctor, but good thing our family doctor has no clinic today.  Did I ever tell you that I’m scared of doctors and any kind of medical procedure?  The only thing I’m comfortable with is X-ray.  Even the doctor’s stethoscope and throat thingy makes me nervous.  I go to the doctor only when I’m so sick I can barely stand.  I’m making a compromise this time.  If I’m still not fine by Monday afternoon, ok, I’ll go to the doctor.  That’s when her clinic is open anyway. 😀  And yes, I’m comfortable with one doctor only, the same one who has treated our extended family for around 20 years now.  At least I don’t have to recite a litany of medical history whenever I go to her.  Until tomorrow though, it’ll be Biogesic and lots of water and sleep for me.  Hope to have better news next post.

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Wilted.

I literally crawled up the stairs to my room when I got home this evening.  Seriously.  The heat and traffic really got me today.  My head felt weird – somewhere in-between dizziness and a headache.  On days like these I really wish we were in the Western Hemisphere so we would have four seasons.  Then again, it’s good that we’re not.  Just think of how many less fortunate and street people would suffer in the winter frost.  That sort of made me stop wishing for really cold weather.

If I were a Buddhist and believed in reincarnation, I would probably think that I lived in a cold country in a previous life – or was a cold-blooded animal. 😉  I have very low tolerance for heat unless I’m in the beach.  Bad for someone who lives in the tropics.  Oh well, I’ll just have to suck it up.  I just can’t believe that there are still people who aren’t convinced that our planet is warming so fast and refuse to do something about it.  Haven’t they ever experienced such intense heat?  And haven’t they noticed that it’s gotten hotter and hotter each year?

Pardon my whining, this is just another way for me to cool down.  I’m just waiting for my hair to dry after my bath then I’ll sleep already with the hope that tomorrow will not be as hot and traffic will not be as bad.  Oh, good luck about that!

I Wish

If there’s an OPM song that I wish I had written, this would be it:

Nais Ko

Nais kong maihip ng hanging walang patutung’han
Parang ibong wala ring hangarin kundi ang lumipad nang lumipad
Nais kong lumipad

Nais ko ring maagos ng alon saan man mapadpad
Kahit na isdang mumuntiin, hangari’y lumangoy nang lumangoy
Nais kong lumangoy

Nais kong malibot ang mundo sa kanyang kasuluk-sulukan
Nais kong makita ang paligid kong puno ng kagandahan
Nais kong makadama ng kakaibang damdamin kahit minsan man lang
Habang ako ay may buhay, wala nang hangarin pang tunay
Nais ko…nais ko…nais ko…

Nais kong maulit muli ang buhay
Kung may pagkakataon upang mamalas
Ang mga bagay-bagay na ‘di ko natanto sa aking buhay
Nais kong lumipad

(Written by Ryan Cayabyab and sung by Basil Valdez)

••••••••••••

It’s a song of an adult but expressed with child-like earnestness.

It’s sad that the golden age of OPM seems to have passed with no reemergence in sight.  Sure, the bands are hopping, but can their songs endure to become future OPM classics?  Then there are the solo singers, most of whom are products of talent search shows, who rely on revivals to build a name.  Only a few take the risk with original songs.  Even then, a lot of these songs are written by foreign composers.  They’re banking on the “international” appeal.  Some of these songs are good, and there are many, many great foreign songs, but in this Pinoy’s heart, nothing beats OPM, especially those from the 70s to the early 90s.  I wish I’ll live to see the second golden age of OPM.

My dad and I both didn’t go to work today.  I woke up feeling a bit woozy, but I made it through my bath and halfway through breakfast, then that was it.  I just sat around the entire morning.  My dad was another case altogether.  He was perfectly fine, and was already dressed to go to work.  He saw me on the sofa and suddenly decided to go to the office only in the morning and take the rest of the afternoon off.  Oh, the power of suggestion.  Na-inggit yata, hehe!  There must be something in the air at home.

Voting: A Right and A Privilege

I was disturbed to find out that some friends are actually planning not to vote, either because they don’t know anymore who is worth voting for or because they have totally lost faith in our political system.  Perhaps it was the lateness of the hour when I couldn’t form a coherent thought anymore, or maybe I was really unsettled by what I was hearing, but I just wasn’t able to speak up and share my side.  I just sat there, silently mulling what they were saying.

How many other Filipino citizens at the prime of their life think this way?  We have learned in Social Studies that it is our right to vote.  What we have to understand is that it can also be viewed as a privilege.  Just think of other countries around the world where citizens would love to have a hand in picking their government leaders, but are not allowed to do so.  Here we are, given the right and the freedom to vote for whomever we want, and some of us refuse to do so – and then complain about how the government sucks.

Even if the candidates we vote for do not eventually win, at least we can say that we tried, that we’re doing something to improve things.  Only then can we have the right to feel frustrated and to complain and to protest.  There are other ways to show displeasure with the government, but never by giving up the right and the privilege to vote.  It is just the height of apathy and resignation.  Change does not happen out of thin air.

Silence

You’re probably wondering why I haven’t written anything at all about the Virginia Tech shooting when just about every other blogger has some analysis.  I’ve actually started something several times, but I just had no clear thought.  I was just full of questions and confusions…and a heavy heart.  I don’t know any of the people involved and have never been in a situation remotely close to that, so I can never say that I “know how they feel”.  All I can offer is a prayer for the families of the victims, as well as the students who will be returning to the school after this.  May they have the courage and strength to live as normal a life as possible again…and to eventually forgive the shooter.  I’m also praying that in death, it would somehow be possible for Cho Seung Hui to be held accountable yet still be released from the torment in his mind.

Figuratively and literally. We were at Shangri-La Mall last night and had dinner at Green Tomato. Yummy pasta! Rebs kept on insisting that we’ve already eaten there before. I kept saying no, we haven’t, or maybe she had but definitely not with me along. I think the attendant was quite amused because it was bordering on a heated debate. Gosh, put two stubborn people together, one with poor memory and one with a dizzy brain, and there you have it. We moved on to Starbucks after Tin arrived, and ate a delicious chocolate truffle cake (or something like that; it was Tin who ordered). While we were there, one of her gay friends called and invited her to meet them at Arya in Greenhills. So off we went. They were such jolly company, as most gay people are. One of them was a gym instructor – the same gym instructor who taught the Body Combat class that I walked out on after only 30 minutes due to sheer exhaustion! Good thing he didn’t remember me…probably. We had a funny time alternately dissing and complimenting the waitresses. One waitress was very pretty, so Donnie told her so outright. She was very flattered since he said it with such sincerity. Then he acted panicked and said, “Oh my gosh, I’m liking girls now!” The other waitress wasn’t so friendly and accommodating, so Donnie had lots of side comments that were really funny. I think she even heard some of it…ooops.

Last night was a great ending to the work week, a good balance between seriousness and silliness. We also planned our itinerary for June, which is: Day 1 – beach at Antulang; Day 2 – beach at Antulang; Day 3 – beach again at Sumilon; Day 4 – Dumaguete City. Rebs said, “Yun lang yun?” Haha! I guess she got used to our much more complicated itinerary last summer when we went to Bantayan island, Cebu City, Dumaguete, Valencia and finally Bacolod – all in just 6 days. I can’t wait for June. Crossing my fingers that I can really go. Oh yeah, a lot of things are hanging in the balance right now. I’m excited to see which way they’ll land.

Playing Hooky

Once again, I find myself with pretty much nothing to do at the office, and it’s only 4:27pm (I get off at 5:30).  This usually happens to a Copywriter especially during projects when close collaboration with an artist is involved.  Artist is busy with more urgent project –> Copywriter left idle.  So I changed my blog template.  Ok, ok, I know you’re thinking, “There she goes again…”.  So, I’m no longer promising that this template will stick.  Just resign yourself to seeing a new template every few months. 😀

Thank God for YouTube and this other site where I watch current seasons of TV shows (ssh! heehee).  It’s funny, but when the office is so quiet, you’ll know that most of us are not very busy.  We’re all probably just on YouTube or any other sites on the Net.  Or group chatting. 😉  Goofing off has now also gone the high tech way.

There’s no gross factor here, promise. I’m just wondering how come I get my best ideas in the bathroom – or when I’m sick. I know Ernest Hemingway writes best when intoxicated. I wonder if many other writers (both literary and advertising alike) also get their best ideas and do their best writing under extraordinary circumstances.

Once, while working on a brochure, I went to the bathroom and wham! An idea to make it more special and meaningful hit me. I went out immediately to share it with the Art Director. She ended up laughing at how I thought of the idea…and the brochure ended up winning a Gold Quill Merit Award. Not really sure if it was because of that idea, but still…

It happened again recently. I went to the bathroom at work and another solution popped into my head. At home, a lot of other ideas (not necessarily connected to writing) also crop up whenever I’m in the bathroom. Maybe it’s the isolation or the nothing-else-to-think-about atmosphere, but bathrooms can be great brainstorming places. If I ever build my own ad agency someday, maybe I’ll put a bathroom inside the conference room, haha! Or at the very least I’ll put a pen and pad paper on the bathroom so people can write their ideas so they won’t have to rush out to tell someone before they forget. This scenario could get ugly. Use your imagination.

Some of my best works (in my humble opinion) have also been written during times when I felt like the room was spinning. When we were bidding on a big project, I unfortunately became ill, with my blood pressure going as low as 90/60 or even lower. I had to stay horizontal, but had to go back to work after two days since we had that bidding deadline and I was nowhere near being finished. Well, the show, er, the writing must go on. I wrote everything barely able to see straight. Guess what, we got the project, and it became a finalist at the CMMA (Catholic Mass Media Awards)!

When we were bidding for another, even better project, I stayed overnight at the office to keep the Art Directors company. Team spirit, you know. I thought I would be done with my part by midnight. Not so. At around 2am, when we could barely keep our eyes open, we went out to buy some snacks and watch the eclipse. When we went back to the office, my head was spinning from lack of sleep, but then the words kept flowing. Again, we got the project and it won another Gold Quill Award.

Of course I’m not taking full credit. It’s the combination of great artwork and good copy, whose initial ideas came out of unusual places and circumstances.

When it comes to copywriting – and probably any other form of writing for that matter – sometimes it’s better to not take it too seriously to the point that you’re over-focusing. When stumped, get out of it for a while and go do mundane stuff. Goof off a little with the rest of the team. But always, always respect deadlines and even if everything else is going bonkers, keep writing short of literally being unable to use your hand to write. Then again, you could always dictate. 😉

I hope all the angels and saints in heaven give you a nice party!  We miss you very much but you are now in the best place that you could ever be.  Thank you for praying for us and continuing to guide us.  Mwah!