Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Oh come on! We're friends!

meme from
My wife has been bugging me about the number of friends I have in Facebook. In a way, she was wondering if the ones in my list are really my friends outside Facebook. Do I really have to share my life to virtual friends that I barely know of, or in some sense, that I never really met personally?

So far none of my virtual friends, I say friends that I never met, have been worrying so far. I got a lot! Some are G-shock retailers, fake sneakers resellers, some are from the photography sector and all that... I don't know, maybe I am just as friendly in the real world as in the virtual world.

But, let's face it. Social media has changed old the rules of relationships... and I am not really against it. That's why Ella was bugging me all about it last night.

Well, at least I didn't find them annoying nor they are abusive. In fact, I find most of them very interesting. Nap Beltran, a virtual friend from the photography world, I find him amusing and intellectual in so many ways. I can disagree with his political views as much as I can agree with some of his. But the persona that he is (or she) is just as ideal for a friend. Real life friends on the other hand can hardly get to his standard, I believe so. Well, I could only hope I could meet him someday and scratch some of his fingernails... And well, Nap is gay and I don't mind. I would rather have gay friends who are truthful and trustworthy than have them straights who lack balls.

Internet retailers. Most probably we wouldn't trust them. That's why potential buyers would research about these retailers before purchasing from them. Or we would probably just buy from the legitimate stores in a mall. Kenneth Yu, a watch retailer. I trust him. Not that I am an advocate for underground businesses... but this guy is really trustworthy. With the transactions that I have with him, and hundreds more like me who would like to catch a really good discounts, he is the man. Real life friends, some will charge you "extra" until you probably rot in hell. Trust is an ultimate issue and sadly, the real world lacks of it as much as in the virtual world.

Eric Acosta, of pinoyguns. He's my go-to person when it comes to FA ownership. I asked a lot of questions about guns and he wouldn't mind answering all my queries with a "Bro." before my name. That's an extra mile... In the real world, them so called friends would even mock you for that silly question you were asking and most like will call you "tanga naman..."

Does it matter really to have more virtual friends than one must have? Does it matter really that one must have more real friends than "who-the-hell-they-are" friends? 

Nah! I wouldn't mind having them hanging around my timeline and enjoying their intellects than them people who would encroach to my life, to our lives... making a mockery out of me.

These past few months is a realization for me, and probably for my wife too. Some friends come, they hang out, make a mess... and they're gone. My virtual friends? They are hanging around in my timeline having a very good time... and so am I.

Monday, June 29, 2015

A Birthday Memory

This past year have been quite difficult for us. Of course, we have seen a lot of beautiful things too, but going through deaths of loveones is really heartbreaking. We celebrate life to its very fullest for once and then death just took away all the joy, the laughter and all that was worth. What leaves us are nothing but memories.

Exactly a year ago today, papa celebrated one of his happiest birthdays. Ella made sure that he's having his favorite dishes, my brother made sure that his all-time favorite lechon is served, Joy made sure that all of his friends were coming. It was an awesome day. One can see the happiness of a child celebrating a birthday by the look on his face. Seeing him like that was happiness and it was unforgettable. 

He was happy that he had palm reading sessions with the ladies that night. It was his first palm reading session in about a year... when he somehow predicted my father-in-law's health on a father's day. I am a skeptic but I am still amazed at how papa would simply catch or predict one's fate or past or traits or wahtever. I thought it was all trickery. Well, could be coincidence... until some of his readings were quite accurate and the last were with my in-laws. Mang Boy had a heart attack about five hours later. Papa was depressed as if he was blaming himself for reading Mang Boy's "fate." When Mang Boy recovered, so did papa... but he promised himself not to have palm reading sessions again. 

Exactly a year ago today, he had his last palm reading session. His usual ladies were lining up for some future insights. Well, it was all ladies that night though and I won't forget how he made them ladies happy and he was too! He had his usual laughter, a drunk kind of laughter, after each reading. That "hahahaha! Ho!" was really tempting. Happiness, you know.... Can't take that away from him that night.

Who would have thought it would be his last birthday? He was strong! He could take two to three liters of red horse beer in one sitting. He could sweep out all the rubbish down the street like he was the official block street sweeper. Who would have thought?

There are times when I get to see memories of him while alone. I still see my man the last time I saw him alive. I can still see my man the last time I sent him for a checkup. I still see my man the last time I saw his face turned read after I pulled the plug... To be honest, it is hurting me still. I still can't get over his passing. To be honest, pulling the plug was quite an experience. I'd be damned if I didn't feel chills until today. It was pretty aweful. People would say a few things like "it's okay, he was gone way before you unplug him..." or "you freed him of suffering..." and all that... But I could only say in silence that the feeling was not really good that it hurts still.

But he was gone. I know he is in a better place. I also hope that he is enjoying some heavenly beers on the other side. It's his birthday, he deserves some celebration, yeah! I could only pray for myself, that one day so soon, I will get over his passing and move on. I could only pray for my mom, that she be healthy. I could only pray for my siblings that they may find happiness in everything that they do. I'm sure my old man is very proud of them. I hope he is proud of me too!

Today would have been papa's 77th birthday. But he came short of waiting for this day. He looked forward for this day. He's got plans... but it's not meant to be. It would have been so much fun. Just not meant to be.

I really missed my old man. I missed kissing him. I missed hugging him... I missed the times when he shoo me away because I was so annoying already when I hug him. It was something I looked forward to when I got to visit him. Never got to happen again, I guess.

Happy birthday me old man! No more hugs but I'm pretty sure you look better now. No more pains yeah! Rest. Well. I love you so much, papa!

Saturday, May 09, 2015

Dear Papa

Dear Papa,

I just want to thank you for the man that you were. You were not perfect, I know, but it made perfect sense to me that you were my old man. You had always taught me the essence of forgiveness, of just being happy, of just being simple, of just being broke and not giving up, of just being loved and to love more in return... and for breaking me and starting to pick-up the pieces as soon as you left.

I remember those days as a teen when I used to hate you. You were the person who I love to hate. I used to curse you for being my father. I used to pick you to fight me but you chose not to. I used to blame you for my fate. I used to hurt you. I did papa, I know. I knew it broke your being. It seemed that love was gone.

But I also remember when things changed when we had a good talk. When you asked me for a pair of shoes and I brought you to the shoe store for fitting. Your feet were so small Papa, we had to go to the kids section. I remember I was in tears trying to find you a pair. I still remember the feeling Pa. You had me realize how grateful I was to be your son. You suddenly changed my perspective in life. You suddenly made me realize that I was all wrong about you. I am not perfect Papa, but you made perfect sense to me that I am your son. We talked about being thankful and forgiveness that day Papa... It was a fine December day. Promise I won't forget that.

There were more days that I didn't visit you even when we were very near. Perhaps I was busy trying to make a life out of what I have. Maybe I was ignoring you. Last December we had a good talk. You asked me why? It broke me Papa and you knew what I suddently felt. I cannot answer you back because it felt so bad. I asked you "kumusta pa?" while I hugged you. You answered back... "I am old Jeeh. My days are gone and numbered..." You broke me that day Papa. I went home in tears that night Papa. It really felt so bad. It made perfect sense to me how you were so forgiving without even me asking for one.

You were sick Papa after that talk. You were feverish. You were complaining about your leg pains that you thought were just arthritis. You made me worried. You made everyone worried. I remember how worried you were about the expenses, how you told us that you were worried about JR having to spend all his savings for your bills. How you were worried about the money spent for your hospitalization... But it was more worrisome Papa when we were told you had cancer. I remember how it felt Papa. You were in pain. But it made more sense to us Papa, that we everyone learned the joy of just being with you. Mama really took care of you 24/7. All those years Papa, you guys fought almost everyday... but I remember the sight of mama taking care of you and it was wonderful.

We asked your firstborn to visit you last February Papa. I remember the expression of your face when you saw her. You cried Pa... but you told us you cried because your legs hurt. How we laughed so hard pa. How you brought joy to my heart that day Papa and to ate Melen too.

Papa, the past months, we used to joke around each other. You were stronger. You looked better. You looked the happiest. You looked healthier. You posed for selfies. You appreciate more of the small things. That fifty pesos or a thousand more didn't matter to you. You showed us Papa that joy of giving unconditionally and it made perfect sense to me now. Your pains and gains didn't matter to you anymore but the mere presence of your loveones did. I will always remember Papa the joy you felt when your best Ella came to visit you. You were the happiest papa. And until the end Papa, you made Ella realize that she moves on with her lost too, for good.

My siblings are the happiest too Papa. They got more stories to tell. Mama is the happiest too papa. She's got more love to share and tell.

These past week, you were sick again. We utter few words. I asked you to come with us but you didn't want. You were quite serious when you told us last Tuesday you wanted Joy to get married soon because you were going. I remember I didn't say a thing. Something was off that afternoon Pa. I kept my distance at the clinic. We stared at each other sometimes. I try to smile Pa, you kept your silence. I never thought that was your last Tuesday.

Pa, I saw your struggle. Pa, I heard the doctor said that we might lose you. But Pa, your heart still gave a chance to stay with you. Your mind was no longer there but your heart Pa was so strong and I could only hope I have that strength... it was beating still pa. You gave us a chance to stay together beside you. You gave us a chance to pray together Pa. And most of all, you gave a chance to look at the brighter side of life when we decided to let you go. It was painful Pa, but we had to let you go. You know Pa, you left surrounded by the ones you loved. You must be very proud Papa.

Papa, I have always told you how much I love you. I will miss kissing you Pa. I will miss hugging you until you complain that you had enough hugs from me. I will miss teasing you around. I will miss those jokes and banters Pa and you were good at that really.

It makes perfect sense to me now Papa... you had lived through rough rides but you were gracious every step of the way. You loved us best. We love you more Papa.

Kita ta sunod didto sa pikas, magdala ko ug redhorse. Padayon na Pa. Padayon na.