i love me some geek

Sunday night and I can't sleep. ISC's resident celebrity boyfriend is crooning in the background. And oh, isn't it wonderful that he loves the sun too? And he adored his grandma who "would bring to life with her paints all kinds of kitschy creations to place...." And he admits to being shy. And he wrote You and I Both which is easily one of the sweetest songs ever.

Yes, for those of you who don't know, I'm rambling about Mr. A-Z. That boy who sings and writes like no other, the same one who made me think and contemplate about life and universality and connectedness (Is this even a word? Clearly, I need to get some sleep if I can't figure this out, hee) just after reading 10 or so paragraphs of his random musings. Mind you, earlier during the evening I was feeling particularly angsty about the fact that tommorrow is Monday already and I have to keep up with my infinite number of reports, mentally checking off my list of things to do. And then I read his journal entry and viola! I felt so much better. Just like that.

Its not even that his writings are brilliant and mind-blowing. But there's just something about him that is essentially good and real and unpretentious which shines through his words. It doesn't matter if he wrote about a beesting or about a friend who passed away, everytime I read his journal I always come away with some insights about the things that matter. Like agape and oneness. And being grateful to Life and to "the me that is you".

And yes, I'm grateful. I'm grateful for a certain geek in the pink and his beautiful thoughts. For Sunday nights when I couldn't sleep and its just me and the whole possibility of words dancing with my pen, even if all the time I kept telling myself that I'm finally gonna sleep early, force myself to lay down in bed and close my eyes 'till I drift off to the land of REMs and all those other stages in between. I'm grateful for Life who gave me friends, crazy ones like me, who also plastered their Zoology textbooks with photocopied images of someone they all used to love, who were sent out of Ms. Serrato's sociology class because they were "shouting", and who ate a bag-full of marshmallow chocolates in a movie theater 'till they felt very sick, not really understanding what the movie was about because all they could think of was that surprise encounter of one friend's high school crush and his then-girlfriend. I'm grateful for memories of carefree times and belly laughs and shared loves.

So once again ISC girlies, here's to sharing:

taking the road

I have a confession to make. For a long time I really had this silly and irrational fear of driving. It started back in the Philippines when I was about 18. My father bought me a brand new stick-shift car. I was very excited, only a few people from my class had a car, and I felt like I could finally prove to myself that I am not as dyspraxic as I thought.

That was until I backed into someone else's car while driving my sister to school. It wasn't even that big of an accident, we were at a hilly intersection and I had a hard time manipulating the stick shift, but it was enough to scar me for awhile. And just like that, my driving days were over.

What followed was a long history of excuses just so I couldn't drive. When I got here in the States, my excuses were a little valid. I was a poor grad student, I couldn't afford a car. My last job was in a non-profit organization and I didn't make much money, ergo I couldn't afford a car. But I also kept postponing my driving test, coming up with a thousand reasons which I couldn't even remember now. My poor friends had to drive me around so much I'm surprised they didn't abandon me then. Although now that I think about it, most of them are also occupational therapists, so they are naturally inclined to help someone with special needs. Like me. Hee.

Finally, last August, I got my driver's license. It was one of those now-or-never things, I was already 26 and I thought that if I wouldn't push myself to face my fears then I'll never be able to drive again. Plus I was sick and tired of waiting and chasing for the bus although I did have some classic stories to tell about the characters that I met using the Torrance Transit.

But why am I telling this story? Well, aside from the fact that only 4 people read this blog so I can make fun of myself and no one will ever read it anyway, I spent the rest of my spring break on the road (a la Jack Keroauc). Yes, I went from 'not driving at all' to 'driving all over the place' in just 7 months. After my weekend in L.A., my friend Irish and I drove all the way to San Francisco, then drove down to
Yosemite National Park and back again to SF in just 4 days. Its funny because eventhough I was absolutely stunned by the beauty of Yosemite, the only thing that I could think about now is the drive to get there and back. Even Irish wrote about it in her blog.

Thousands of feet above sea level, with steep and rugged cliffs all around, it was just us and the winding road. It was the scariest drive of my life but I couldn't help but feel exhilarated. We drove back to SF in time for sunset and watched in awe as the sky changed from blue to orange-red then finally to purple. The changing sky made the mountains look straight out of a fairy tale, and right there, I felt like everything is possible. That if I could do that drive, then I can do whatever it is that my heart sets out to do.

Have a glorious spring everyone! And 'till the next adventure.

while i was gone

It's been a hectic spring break. I went to L.A. to attend the OS Symposium, saw some of my 'SC peeps, said hello to Tommy Trojan and felt ancient walking around the main campus with tons of college kids in their Juicy sweatpants and Hollister tees. Its been 3+ years since grad school but it seemed like aeons ago already.

Downtown L.A. is still flat and hot, the freeways were congested and it took forever to get from point A to point B, reminding me why I left in the first place. But despite its layers of smog and heavy traffic, L.A. still has a charm all of its own. I visited some of my old stomping grounds, Mitsuwa Market and Redondo Beach topping the list, and braved the Metro system for the first time. They say that the Metro is so ghetto but it really was not as bad as most people think. And it certainly beats sitting in traffic at the parking lot that is the 405 freeway.

Of course, its the people that makes a place special and I'm so lucky I was able to spend quality time with my original girls again. And who would've thought that eventhough I live in San Francisco I would actually go to a gay club L.A? Its a long story, Dae and co. wanted to support their Papi Edgar, so we went and had some good laughs.

Neeha and I, being the dorks that we are, went toy-shopping at Target. How dorky can we get? Its actually for the kids that we work with but we really did raid that toy section, grabbing games like Don't Break the Ice and Ants in the Pants like its gonna go out of style (they were on sale!). We also went to The Grove, which believe it or not was my first time going there and I lived in L.A. for 3 years, watched the movie The Namesake, and surprise, surprise saw one of the actresses while we were walking out of the theater. Only in Hollywood.

I stayed with Dae and Phil in their apartment in Long Beach for two days and I still can't believe that these two are married already. How time flies. Their apartment is beautiful, right by the ocean and at a walking distance to all the shops and restaurants on Second Street. On my last night in L.A. we had our "Chinito dinner" (according to Roy), Korean-Filipino style. Poch, whom I haven't seen in ages, even came our impromptu get-together. Everyone say ceviche! :P

R to L: Roy, Moi, Irish, Poch, Neehu, Phil and Dae