Sunday, April 29

Brighter Later

I'm wide awake, it's Sunday morning. Sleepless from cigarette-withdrawal coughing. I'm only cutting down sticks per day and yet I'm hacking to kingdom come.

"Make a plan to love me sometime soon." Soulful, with swelling strings. Bright Eyes does a Cat Power, all smoky bar cliche. All hung-over sunrise. Just beautiful. I forget to cough.

Maybe, I forget to breathe.

The rest of Cassadaga is folksy blues, distant stories but easily poignant. Sweeping. And surprisingly light-hearted. Oberst rambles above guitars, fiddles, dusty landscapes. Like flipping through postcards until one is warm all over with memories. Memories I don't have but the songs somehow conjured.

Get the album. The melodies are catchy but fleeting. So just continue spinning the record over and over. On quiet, sleepless, Sunday mornings.

Saturday, April 28

Friday Night Light a flickering TV screen. And a computer screen, without the flickering of course because that would mean spending. Spending is the enemy right now. So I could spend more in the very near future.

W's away on a trip so I teach myself how to add headers to my blog, I sing along to Tilly and the Wall's "Rainbows in the Dark," and catch up on the third season of Project Runaway. I'm really getting good, very good, at wasting time. I can practically teach it to a class, write a book about it---wait, there's a book out on that topic already and it's called The Seven People You Meet in Heaven. Or Want to Meet in Heaven. Why not The Gazillion People You Want to Meet in Heaven? One practically has his entire after life meeting up with dead people. Waste of time to read that book is what I'm trying to say.

Exceptionally temperamental today. It's the trying to cut down with the smokes. Bought nicotine chewing gum and I'm almost done with the first pack. Helps a lot with the craving. But not with the irritability, which is a scientifically acknowledged symptom of cutting down on cigarettes. Yay, me! License to bitch at this guy from another agency who wanted "edgy" on an SM ad. Shoe Mart, mga friendships. Kahit na hindi edgy ang copy ko, bungal ka pa rin.


Great. Worked myself up to a hissy fit. Time for take-out food. You all have a great weekend.

Thursday, April 26

Wednesday, April 25

Werewolves in Their Youth

I was silly once. I remember sharing a joint with a couple of friends in the university, and like most defiantly naughty deeds, it was done, the smoking, under a tree, sitting on the grassy ground, buzzing bugs circling our heads like halos. We giggled mostly. Giggled and giddily ate crackers. And then we started running. In circles. All over.

“Let’s pretend that we’re Vietnamese girls and we were being chased by G.I. soldiers,” F said, already getting ahead, lifting up his imaginary skirt. We had just seen Heaven and Earth.

And so we did. For hours it felt like. Laughing and stumbling, circling the tree like insects. Buzzed.

I miss it. Guiltless abandon. Relaxed rebellion. And I had almost forgotten how that felt like.

"I laid on my back, let the punk record spin
The sloppy guitar, it was shooting out stars
It all went to my heart, yeah some rainbows in the dark

Beautiful, innit? Tilly and the Wall's growing pains and misbehaving is anything but rock and roll dumb cool. No drug-dazed walking dead fuck ups. No sunshiny languishing either. It's clever without being precious; incisive without plans. I'm a lyric kind of guy and the kilometric strings of words---practically streets of stories---are a pleasure to explore with quick turns to rousing disobedience and hidden alleys to heartbreaks.

Musically, it's still Bright Eyes meets Rilo Kiley with tap dancing for percussion though everything is bigger on this second album. Bigger harmonies, bigger sound, bigger choruses. The stomping, clapping and tap dancing are more delirious in the soaring riffs and tiptoes on the slow burners.

"So I thank the city, the lights that it's spinning
The friends that I have and the shoes we’re not shining."

If there's anything that being in my thirties taught me, it's to inject a little silliness in everything: work, love, the books I read, the music I listen to, the memories I choose to guard.

Tilly and the Wall is a feral celebration of our youth. Invincible to irony. Enthusiastic in crumpled clothes. Exultant as we race down the street. Or run in circles. It doesn't really matter.

Friday, April 20

If I were a book

You're Prufrock and Other Observations!

by T.S. Eliot

Though you are very short and often overshadowed, your voice is poetic
and lyrical. Dark and brooding, you see the world as a hopeless effort of people trying
to impress other people. Though you make reference to almost everything, you've really
heard enough about Michelangelo. You measure out your life with coffee spoons.

Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.

(Nicked this from Is It Safe.) Stuck with...Though you are very short. Man. But yeah, sooo tired of all the deconstruction, -isms, meh. So early 90s. Heh.

Tuesday, April 17

Bohol! Bohol!

Quite literally. The nightly gin drinking has made those five days blurry, in a time-jump sense, only little is chronologically playing out in my head. There's the arrival, the solemn Friday, the search for pork, and the first of many guzzling down of gin shots, err, bottles.

First day high. And the search for inihaw na liempo. Kaya mga nakasimangot.

Flight was crazy early, 6:30 a.m. Dizzy for the most part, smokes and coffee not really helping. Sleep walking in a strangely quiet place. We've been forewarned that Boholanos are highly religious and touring the place on a Good Friday was close to sacrilege. So I mostly slept while the others started plotting the quickest route to the beach.

Bohol air, almost sweet. The closest to ecstasy in a biblical sense. Really. Breathe it in and you know there is a God. We would walk aimlessly under the heat of the sun (which wasn't painfully hot unlike Manila's evil sun) and there was no tightening of the chest, no catching of breath. The tour was just great fun and for the first time in years, I felt tireless.

The complete cast, from left to right: Word, Tristan, Mark, Sam, Me, and Arne

First time in 7 years that I joined a sorta company outing. Partly due to a few people that I cannot get along with, mostly because it's usually an overnight thing. Me, I'm the stay-up-late, wake-up-late guy. So five days was perfect. Relaxed. Loose. Hours to wile away.

And these guys are incredible company. Kwela pero masipag mamalengke at magluto. Mahilig din sa alkohol kaya panalo talaga. So yeah, we're planning to make this a yearly thing. Maybe Palau?

Monday, April 2

Hot Chip — Colours

There's "Boy from School," instant, shiny loops. Top of the Pops stuff. Then there's "Colours," bottled longing that bubbles over. It takes its time. Teases sunshine. And delivers hot white blisters.