Growing up it seemed that every house on the block decorated and participated in Halloween. Tonight I see about 1 in 50 houses in my area participating, and all that one house did was throw an uncarved pumpkin out on the porch that will probably double up as decoration for Thanksgiving. This depresses the hell out of me. Where’s the community festivity? Maybe my area is just lame, I don’t know. But the energy definitely isn’t the same.
February 17th, 2012.
That was the day that I realized my life was in need of a change.
Before this time, I was merely going through the motions of my life. I felt a strong sense of depersonalization, with the belief that I had no control over any situation. Every night I looked forward to the same thing; to hit the bars hard and forget about anything else. Microbrews were my only source of pleasure, something that gave me solace against my misery.
How lazy was I? Sure, I worked over 50 hours a week, but that was just a front. I used the long hours at work to justify my lack of ambition towards a life, post-graduation. I maintained that I was too exhausted from work to conduct a real job search, but of course, I’d always catch a second-wind when it came time to go downtown.
How did I get to be like this? Looking back, you could say it was a number of things. It was the fact that I was past my 5th year of college, barely getting my degree and having nothing to show for it. It was the fact that I was involved in an abrupt breakup and coped with it the wrong way. It was the fact that I gravitated towards alcohol to heal my wounds, without taking on my problems with a clear mind.
It was the fact that I believed I deserved more in life without actually doing anything to earn it.
How did I get a grip on reality? By sitting down and having a long look at myself. Instead of being fixated on what I didn’t currently have, I made a list of things that I had going for me:
Come on dude, you have a degree from Virginia Tech, your dream school since you were a kid! That can get you a job if you search hard enough! Although you’re a fat piece of shit now, it’s okay. You’ve worked your way back into shape before, start hitting the gym again and take care of yourself! By the way, what the fuck are you still doing in this area? Go home and focus on your future. Plus, you have a family there that loves & misses you. And oh yeah, you can’t handle your liquor, so quit fucking drinking and thank me later.
And that is precisely what I did. I put in my two weeks notice and bolted the hell out of Blacksburg… and onto my new life’s journey.
I have not felt compelled to create a Tumblr post in awhile. With two lengthy papers on my plate, I have gotten into the mindset that my writing comes at a cost; the time and effort I put into writing posts means resources away from my papers. And if you have any clue about my life, then you would know that there is nothing more I want than to get the hell out this area. Simply put, I’ve been here for too long. And the completion of my Field Study is my one-way ticket out of here.
But because I’m a walking paradox, I’m thinking to myself, ‘would the next step be all that great?’
I always think about my future solely through the way I envision it, and I never take into the account the process in which I’ll get there. All I do is daydream. I create benchmark dates where I envision my life will magically turn into the way I want it to be. I can’t wait till the end of this week… this month… this summer …this year. And at every mile-marker at the road of my life, I become disillusioned with the way things actual are.
You see, my dreams are scenarios that involve other people and how they will perfectly fit into my life. And when the people closest to me cannot align themselves the way I imagined, I’m left all by myself and disappointed with the way things are. In order to move on, I envision a new ideal life for myself with arbitrary dates where I’ll finally be content.
That’s bullshit. That’s not the way I can continue to live. It just sets me up for the big letdown. I need to recognize that the only factor that I can control in life’s scenarios is: myself. And I need to put greater effort in deriving my life’s pleasures from reality, not far-fetched dreams. I’m wasting my time thinking too much. From here on out, my dreams are going to be dynamic, with the short-term complimenting the long. I simply want to enjoy every day as a new journey and not as another step towards a dead end.
Don’t you love it when your ethnicity puts you in awkward situations?
While driving my co-worker home, he kept softly saying: cervezas? Cervezas! After playing a cross-lingual game of charades, I deduced that cerveza meant beer in Spanish. Nice, he wants to kick back a couple brewskies with me after work. But I politely declined his advances and dropped him off at his apartment.
Except that he wasn’t offering me cervezas. Once I parked my car, he said, nooo… 7-11! Oh, he wanted me to drive him to buy some beers. I get it now. Kind of rude, but whatever.
Once we get to the store’s parking lot, homeboy hands me a twenty and says: Yo no tengo ID. No ID? No shit. I understood that from the time you said “7-11.” I felt like being charitable this evening, so of course I was buying the beer.
We proceed to go into the store and he looks at the Coronas for about 5 minutes. Finally he says, “no 18-pack?” I tell him, “no cabron, they only have a 12-pack.”
"Oh, si. We go to Kroger? Maybe Wal-mart?”
At this point I put my foot down. “No, we buy now. You’re lucky they have limes here. Not a lot of convenience stores have this kind of fruit selection.”
He eventually settles on the Coronas and now it’s time to pay at the register. Our cashier was a tatted up white chick, maybe in her late 20’s. From her vantage point, we were simply two Hispanics trying to buy Coronas, which she assumes is our National drink. And how she tried to communicate with us will stay with me forever:
"HOLA! You two want to drink BEER-O to mucho RELAX-O ?! Coronas are very good…no wait, what’s the word in Spani… they are BUENOOO!"
I wanted to play dumb by nodding & say “Siiiiiiiii.” But she would be expecting that. So I decided to throw her off-guard and speak back in my whitest voice ever. ”Yes. These Coronas will serve us good after a hard day’s work. I can’t wait to drink a cold one, responsibly of course!”
After that, this chick’s jaw was down for about two minutes. She agreed that I should enjoy my beers responsibly and alas, our transaction was complete. Once we got into the car, I thanked my co-worker for having my back in 7-11 by letting me do all the talking. He stayed silent even in the car. Ahh, he’s still in character, he’s one of those method actors…
Once I dropped him off, he offered me ten dollars for all the driving. I normally would’ve accepted because I’m a dick, but this particular night I declined. The opportunity for that memory was payment enough.
I love doing those student-run sobriety tests downtown. It gives me a nice reference to how much alcohol I actually consume on my drinking nights.
Anyways, they introduced a new trick to their repertoire - a field sobriety test! Now, one can simulate getting pulled over for drunk driving without the consequences of failing. Nicely done, Psychology department - except for the fact that during this test, they pitched a curve ball my way.
While walking the “straight line” test, I looked down at my first steps to make sure I was performing this routine sufficiently. And hell yes I was, because
I’m so coordinated when I get my drink on I was pretty sober. All of a sudden when I looked up, an armed cop was standing there, monitoring my every step. Why did they boost up the intimidation factor?!
I’m not going to lie, I can’t perform under extreme pressure. After seeing this cop, I suspiciously stumbled & then gave clichéd excuses for my misstep. Fuck, now the officer is staring me down. Uhhh officer you gotta understand, it’s these flip-flops! Yeah, that’s it. You see, they’re a size too big for me, fucking Old Navy can’t mass produce for shit. They’re the ones you gotta arrest. Sir, SIR, why are you reaching for your cuffs?! Fuck this, I’m making a run for it.
And I would’ve ran off if I wasn’t limited by my cheap flip-flops. I would’ve ran 5 steps before tripping over my feet and falling into a bush. Anyways, the cop left (why was I so paranoid again?!) and I ended up blowing a BAC level of 0.033. That’s not even high enough to qualify for one drink.
I love being a lightweight.
I posted this on my Tumblr last year. Not a day goes by where I don’t think about my fallen friends. I miss them all. And through their lives, I always strive to be the best person I can be & to never take any day for granted.
"The greatest thing that I learned from Virginia Tech did not come from any textbook. It came amidst the adversity during the coldest day of my life, on April 16, 2007.
What initially bothered me from this day was that Cho would never have to answer to the crippling pain and hurt that he inflicted on our community. With his last bullet, a blatant coward revealed himself, afraid to answer for his own personal demons. No fair justice could ever be served upon Cho, but at the very least he should have never been allowed to seal his own fate.
I dwelled upon this side of the tragedy for a while, but then I quit. There was no point in trying to find meaning from a man with a disturbed mind. The answers I hoped to get would inevitably never add up.
Instead, I found solace by learning about the lives of the victims. I personally knew three of the thirty-two victims, and their lives and tales were quite extraordinary. Each one of my friends were gifted individuals who carried special traits that I can only aspire to have.
And so now, I have decided, I am going to try to possess the positive qualities that defined my friends’ lives.
Because of them, I will demand my best efforts from myself in everything that I do. Because of them, I will try to be a positive presence around others. Because of them, I will embrace every second of my waking life as if each day, each moment, is a new journey.
I must not cheat this life that I am fortunate to have. I know that each of my fallen friends would have continued to do amazing things with their brilliant lives. I must live for them. I must live for 32.”
Yesterday, FASA E-board had a discussion with two ladies that interviewed us for their paper on a “Cultural Immersion Experience.” It was a surprisingly interesting conversation that could’ve gone deeper had we all been more prepared for discussion. But that’s neither here nor there.
Anyways, one of the questions was pertinent to me and went something along the lines of: “Was it hard to identify yourself exclusively with both of the races you are a part of?!”
Answer: Hell-to-the-motherfucking-yes. Although I can get along with everyone, I have never been able to identify myself as purely white or purely Filipino. But again, that is neither here nor there. So how did I explain myself? My answer:
"It’s funny, because if you broke down my high school in a simple pie chart, then 1/3rd would be white, 1/3rd would be Filipino, and the other third would be black. Growing up, I felt that I wasn’t white enough to be a part of the Caucasian crowd & I didn’t have the physical traits to associate myself with the Filipino crowd. So that left only the blacks. And it was at this point that I decided to join a gang."
I don’t think they’ll be writing that in their paper. BECAUSE IT’S RACIST.
This recipe comes courtesy of my roommate, Scott. Here it is:
- 1 Tub of Cool Whip
Buy some cool whip. Take off the seal. Open tub and eat the contents. Enjoy!
Eating Cool Whip plain is fucking awesome. Trust me, you’ll enjoy its simple yet complex taste. It can also be calorie conscious. If you eat one-fifth of the tub, then you’ve only consumed 125 calories. If you indulge and eat half the tub, then you’ve consumed roughly 300 calories - you can recover from that.
If you eat the whole tub, then you have an eating problem that calorie-counting won’t fix, you fat fuck.
“Taylor shows athleticism, struggles while passing
Virginia Tech’s Tyrod Taylor had the fastest 40 time among quarterbacks at 4.51 seconds and tied for the best broad jump at 10-foot-6, but he looked timid throwing the ball and had one of the most underwhelming passing performances of the day.
Taylor seemed nervous and appeared to aim the ball rather than driving through and letting it fly. He is determined to be a quarterback in the NFL, but the team that drafts Taylor is likely to put him in a versatile role while he develops. He has the build (6 feet, 217 pounds) and athleticism to transition to wide receiver. His 40 time would have ranked in the top third among wide receivers, and his broad jump would have been ninth among wideouts.”
I know I’m biased, but I still believe he’s an NFL QB. I really do.
I normally don’t share dreams with others because dream stories usually suck, but the one I had last night must be published.
Ready? Okay. Last night I had a dream that my mom was trying to murder me. Not even by drowning me in the bathtub, which is a popular choice with housewives. I was to be murdered with a gun at point blank.
Is this my mind’s way of subconsciously telling me I was supposed to be aborted? Fuck, I need answers. I’m going to call my mom soon.
Hey mom… was I a planned pregnancy? No? So you tried to kill me, didn’t you? I know about the gun, ADMIT TO WHAT YOU DID!