The Joys of Texting

Texting is one of those pleasures in life that I can’t do without. It is a necessity alright but the exchange of messages (especially those funny, or should I say hilarious, ones) also makes my day.

With texting, I discover friends, I get to know acquaintances and friends better, I learn, and I grow. But it is the sad stories that kills the joy. What the heck, life must go on.

There were stories indeed. Friends who become lovers. Enemies who become friends. Friends who become better and greater friends. Broken marriages that were healed. Lovers that were given a second chance. Good deals that were closed. Ambitions that were realized. Etc, etc. The opposite is what kills the joy.

No matter what others think about it, I enjoy the text messages I receive. I cherish each heartwarming message though I get to erase some if the inbox gets loaded. They matter though they were erased. The thought is here in my mind, and in my heart.

Would You?

It was this interesting post of Banzai Cat that had me thinking these past few days. What if one day my daughter goes home crying and telling that she is pregnant? I was once asked by a cousin doctor what I will do if something like this happens. I felt something inside me flared up. I was caught-off guard. She continued her query as if assessing my character, “Would you still support her?”

Without thinking, and flaring, I told her, “I had this clear to them: What happens to your life is your decision. Life is a matter of choice. So, if you choose to get pregnant, or impregnate a girl, then by all means, do it and stick by it. But you won’t be going to school, everything stops.”

My cousin doctor argued, “But, Ate Bing, you will put her/him in deeper shit. How will he/she recover from it all?” After a few seconds, I admitted that, of course, you cannot really abandon your children in such situations. You will always be a mother, or a parent in that case, who will always be there to support no matter what. But you don’t tell them that. Or else it would really be easy for them to do all the things they wanted to do, including getting pregnant, or impregnating a girlfriend.

So here is my question, would you still support your child in a situation like this? How would you do it?

Would You?

It was this interesting post of Banzai Cat that had me thinking these past few days. What if one day my daughter goes home crying and telling that she is pregnant? I was once asked by a cousin doctor what I will do if something like this happens. I felt something inside me flared up. I was caught-off guard. She continued her query as if assessing my character, “Would you still support her?”

Without thinking, and flaring, I told her, “I had this clear to them: What happens to your life is your decision. Life is a matter of choice. So, if you choose to get pregnant, or impregnate a girl, then by all means, do it and stick by it. But you won’t be going to school, everything stops.”

My cousin doctor argued, “But, Ate Bing, you will put her/him in deeper shit. How will he/she recover from it all?” After a few seconds, I admitted that, of course, you cannot really abandon your children in such situations. You will always be a mother, or a parent in that case, who will always be there to support no matter what. But you don’t tell them that. Or else it would really be easy for them to do all the things they wanted to do, including getting pregnant, or impregnating a girlfriend.

So here is my question, would you still support your child in a situation like this? How would you do it?

On My Way to Work

There is this private road which had become a common road to motorists, in search for easy routes, and to avoid traffic. I usually traverse this road to get to work. The area has a part where factories were built side by side. In between are small areas for residence. This is probably where most of the workers in these factories reside or lodge. There is also a part that is mostly and unlawfully residential.

Most of the journeys along the road are spent in a tricycle or in a car and from it you can see people trekking the road to their respective work, forklift trucks hauling up raw materials for these factories, ten-wheeler (most of them) trucks parked alongside the road, and carts pushed by individuals selling fruits and vegetables, and the like. Along the residential area, children (as young as one year old) and adults swarm the streets. One can observe that they are not afraid of the vehicles. It is the other way around.

What is also observable in this part of the road is the number of mentally ill individuals hovering. One of them, at one time, raced with a car while chattering indistinct sounds. You can see him hopping, running, or walking without direction, clad in oversized shorts or pants fastened with a string, or pulled up with one of his hands. There is also this girl, about 18-20 years old, who had a bloated belly when I first saw her (at present the bloat’s gone), walking along the road, with no footwear. You can see her holding a piece of bread, or playing with the kids. An adult, on the other hand, can be seen talking to herself, or silently watching people pass by. She has this big-beaded rosary on her neck. At first glance, you would not know that she is mentally ill.

There was this scrawny man in this part of the road that caught my attention one morning. His wheelchair is parked alongside the road and waves to passers-by every now and then, saying “Good morning, ma’am (sir)! He does this with a salute and a (innocent) grin. It was this last Mother’s Day when I saw him again. To my surprise, he greeted me, “Happy mother’s day, ‘te!” Smiling, I said thank you. I thought that was sweet. For some stranger (who obviously looks older than me) to greet , though he seems to be a happy, mentally ill man, that was really surprising and touching. I know that being emotional is uncalled-for but I was really moved. Some people I know did not even care greeting me on that special day.

This morning, I saw him parked again on the usual location. I nearly burst laughing when he said, “‘Te, baka naman me barya ka d’yan (‘Te, you must have some coins).” So I gave him a coin and he willingly said thank you with that small amount I gave him. But what boggles me is why he was left alone in that part of the road unattended. Since the time I first saw him, I had never seen anyone with him. Where are the relatives? Where is everybody who should have been taking care of him? He could be accidentally sideswiped by a car. He could even be a prey to raucous individuals.

My thoughts will be interrupted afterwards by the sour-and-pungent-smelling new street food that is becoming a trend nowadays on the roads and streets. The squid rings (the main ingredients) are dipped into a basin of flour before dip-fried. Customers pick one by one the squid rings with a (wooden) stick then dip them into a concoction of vinegar, soy sauce, diced onions, garlic and siling labuyo. The aroma is quite annoying. I cannot stand it even with the sight of those seemingly satisfied customers.

The road ends where the main road lies, which is currently under construction, and which is causing very, very heavy traffic (Thanks to them, ‘good’ and ‘venerable’ government officials for the timing!). This is the portion of my everyday affair on my way to work that I hate most. Can you imagine how I cross the main road and jump into the excavated portion and then jump out again to finally get over the other end of the road? And I am dressed in uniform. 😦 Pretty sight, eh?

Nexus: Sa Araw-araw Bago Pumasok

On My Way to Work

There is this private road which had become a common road to motorists, in search for easy routes, and to avoid traffic. I usually traverse this road to get to work. The area has a part where factories were built side by side. In between are small areas for residence. This is probably where most of the workers in these factories reside or lodge. There is also a part that is mostly and unlawfully residential.

Most of the journeys along the road are spent in a tricycle or in a car and from it you can see people trekking the road to their respective work, forklift trucks hauling up raw materials for these factories, ten-wheeler (most of them) trucks parked alongside the road, and carts pushed by individuals selling fruits and vegetables, and the like. Along the residential area, children (as young as one year old) and adults swarm the streets. One can observe that they are not afraid of the vehicles. It is the other way around.

What is also observable in this part of the road is the number of mentally ill individuals hovering. One of them, at one time, raced with a car while chattering indistinct sounds. You can see him hopping, running, or walking without direction, clad in oversized shorts or pants fastened with a string, or pulled up with one of his hands. There is also this girl, about 18-20 years old, who had a bloated belly when I first saw her (at present the bloat’s gone), walking along the road, with no footwear. You can see her holding a piece of bread, or playing with the kids. An adult, on the other hand, can be seen talking to herself, or silently watching people pass by. She has this big-beaded rosary on her neck. At first glance, you would not know that she is mentally ill.

There was this scrawny man in this part of the road that caught my attention one morning. His wheelchair is parked alongside the road and waves to passers-by every now and then, saying “Good morning, ma’am (sir)! He does this with a salute and a (innocent) grin. It was this last Mother’s Day when I saw him again. To my surprise, he greeted me, “Happy mother’s day, ‘te!” Smiling, I said thank you. I thought that was sweet. For some stranger (who obviously looks older than me) to greet , though he seems to be a happy, mentally ill man, that was really surprising and touching. I know that being emotional is uncalled-for but I was really moved. Some people I know did not even care greeting me on that special day.

This morning, I saw him parked again on the usual location. I nearly burst laughing when he said, “‘Te, baka naman me barya ka d’yan (‘Te, you must have some coins).” So I gave him a coin and he willingly said thank you with that small amount I gave him. But what boggles me is why he was left alone in that part of the road unattended. Since the time I first saw him, I had never seen anyone with him. Where are the relatives? Where is everybody who should have been taking care of him? He could be accidentally sideswiped by a car. He could even be a prey to raucous individuals.

My thoughts will be interrupted afterwards by the sour-and-pungent-smelling new street food that is becoming a trend nowadays on the roads and streets. The squid rings (the main ingredients) are dipped into a basin of flour before dip-fried. Customers pick one by one the squid rings with a (wooden) stick then dip them into a concoction of vinegar, soy sauce, diced onions, garlic and siling labuyo. The aroma is quite annoying. I cannot stand it even with the sight of those seemingly satisfied customers.

The road ends where the main road lies, which is currently under construction, and which is causing very, very heavy traffic (Thanks to them, ‘good’ and ‘venerable’ government officials for the timing!). This is the portion of my everyday affair on my way to work that I hate most. Can you imagine how I cross the main road and jump into the excavated portion and then jump out again to finally get over the other end of the road? And I am dressed in uniform. 😦 Pretty sight, eh?

Nexus: Sa Araw-araw Bago Pumasok

Times of Desperation

Juan woke up at 8:00 am today, May 14, elections day. He would have wanted to rise up earlier than 8:00 am but he was too tired out from work even on a Sunday that lasted ’til 9:00 pm last night. He must take advantage of the overtime pay which is just a fraction of his regular 8-hour pay. At past eight, after a mug of coffee and two pieces of pan de sal (he couldn’t afford to eat more because there are only ten pieces of pan de sal and they are five in the family), he rose to his feet and trekked the path to the public school which is only less than a mile away.

Just the other day, there is news that the election supervisor, assigned in this public school, told the teachers who will assist that he will not be giving anymore the P300-allowance. He will be taking in-charge of the PUJs which will take them back and forth to the school. Juan agreed in his mind the teachers’ clamor that the plan seemed anomalous. Why does the election supervisor need to hire PUJs when the school is less than a kilometer away? Majority of the teachers live nearby. Besides, paying P4,500 per PUJ is too much. It is not justifiable to spend that much when the P300 per teacher can be used for some acceptable purposes.

Walking to the school, pieces of sample ballots are scattered on the way, various people handing out these sample ballots are also scattered (and one is just sleeping in a secret place between two vehicles), and young boys are scattered along the narrow paths having a good time handing out leaflets. What a waste, he thought. After all these, anyone who wins (and who would be kaput after the much spending) will get even and will probably make everybody pay back for the lost funds or resources, he thought.

Reaching the public school, which is already swarming with people from different walks of life, he looked at his voter’s ID for his precint number. He recalled a COMELEC official saying that all Filipinos today are pantay-pantay (on level pegging, or on equal footing) – no rich, no poor, no intelligent, no stupid – all are the same casting a single ballot. But then he thought about the corrupt, those in power (and power-hungry), the shameless, the rotten, who make other people feel that they can do anything they want, even exterminate those who vote for their opponent.

The queue is long and it is very hot. He thought he could have brought his anahaw fan, or a folded newspaper instead, to cool himself. He noticed, too, that the line is moving in a snail pace. He discovered at last that there is only one set of election personnel (they are three) attending to the voters of two precincts (each room accomodates voters of two precincts). He was told COMELEC cut the number. Probably cost cutting measures, he thought. And as if one in the queue had heard him, “So that they could put the savings in their pockets!”

With crossed brows, he sits on the little chair and prepares to write. Finally, here he is – about to vote, to cast a ballot, to exercise his right. But he could not make himself write. He is getting confused. Everybody in the list has this bad tale about his person. How does he know who is sincere? The ads did not do any good to all the thoughts running wild in his mind.

Thirty minutes after, he had made up his mind. He wrote in all the slots for senators his name – JUAN DE LA CRUZ – in bold letters.

Times of Desperation

Juan woke up at 8:00 am today, May 14, elections day. He would have wanted to rise up earlier than 8:00 am but he was too tired out from work even on a Sunday that lasted ’til 9:00 pm last night. He must take advantage of the overtime pay which is just a fraction of his regular 8-hour pay. At past eight, after a mug of coffee and two pieces of pan de sal (he couldn’t afford to eat more because there are only ten pieces of pan de sal and they are five in the family), he rose to his feet and trekked the path to the public school which is only less than a mile away.

Just the other day, there is news that the election supervisor, assigned in this public school, told the teachers who will assist that he will not be giving anymore the P300-allowance. He will be taking in-charge of the PUJs which will take them back and forth to the school. Juan agreed in his mind the teachers’ clamor that the plan seemed anomalous. Why does the election supervisor need to hire PUJs when the school is less than a kilometer away? Majority of the teachers live nearby. Besides, paying P4,500 per PUJ is too much. It is not justifiable to spend that much when the P300 per teacher can be used for some acceptable purposes.

Walking to the school, pieces of sample ballots are scattered on the way, various people handing out these sample ballots are also scattered (and one is just sleeping in a secret place between two vehicles), and young boys are scattered along the narrow paths having a good time handing out leaflets. What a waste, he thought. After all these, anyone who wins (and who would be kaput after the much spending) will get even and will probably make everybody pay back for the lost funds or resources, he thought.

Reaching the public school, which is already swarming with people from different walks of life, he looked at his voter’s ID for his precint number. He recalled a COMELEC official saying that all Filipinos today are pantay-pantay (on level pegging, or on equal footing) – no rich, no poor, no intelligent, no stupid – all are the same casting a single ballot. But then he thought about the corrupt, those in power (and power-hungry), the shameless, the rotten, who make other people feel that they can do anything they want, even exterminate those who vote for their opponent.

The queue is long and it is very hot. He thought he could have brought his anahaw fan, or a folded newspaper instead, to cool himself. He noticed, too, that the line is moving in a snail pace. He discovered at last that there is only one set of election personnel (they are three) attending to the voters of two precincts (each room accomodates voters of two precincts). He was told COMELEC cut the number. Probably cost cutting measures, he thought. And as if one in the queue had heard him, “So that they could put the savings in their pockets!”

With crossed brows, he sits on the little chair and prepares to write. Finally, here he is – about to vote, to cast a ballot, to exercise his right. But he could not make himself write. He is getting confused. Everybody in the list has this bad tale about his person. How does he know who is sincere? The ads did not do any good to all the thoughts running wild in his mind.

Thirty minutes after, he had made up his mind. He wrote in all the slots for senators his name – JUAN DE LA CRUZ – in bold letters.