Wednesday, April 26

Confessions of an Early Riser Part 2

7.19 am Beijing time

Elton John is singing right now in my room. "It's a little bit funny..."

I'm smoking my first fag of the day and drinking my first dose of caffeine. My usual shower meditation was uneventful. Jesus kept staring at me while I was trying to reflect on the things that happened last night. And like the steam in my bathroom, my reflection of last night was rather hazy, unclear. I'm still kind of numb about last night. Last night was, I should say, highly surreal. Surreal, but nice. "My LIFE is brilliant...", says James Blunt right now. I would beg to disagree but I can't argue with James right now. I'm way too focused on trying to figure out how to finish this prose then go move on to something more mundane - my work, for example. "But it's time to face the truth..." Meatloaf would have been much a better companion this morning, but the circumstances don't seem to permit me. I feel like Forrest Gump sometimes - only that he's kind of misplaced like in a Twilight Zone.

I remember Shaz telling me about a scene in Wong Kar Wai's 2046 where Toney Leung's character told Faye Wong's character what he thinks about time, circumstance and the right and wrong opportunities. Somehow, even after 2 days, I still can't get it out of my head. Diana Krall is telling me this right now "I could drink a case of you, a case of you, darling... and still be on my feet. I'd still be on my feet."

My sleep was good, albeit only 3 hours. All thanks to someone who tried fighting sleep just to talk to me. Tracy Chapman is singing now... I don't know what to write next.

All I can think ofis Elton John's last words in his song - "How wonderful life is..." I guess Elton's right - "How wonderful Life is"


Friday, April 21

Confessions of an Insomniac Part X {a letter unsent}


I do not know where to start my friend. I guess I should start by apologizing to you for two reasons - the first is for writing you such a belated letter (I am even considering of not sending this to you), and the s

I do not know where to start my friend. I guess I should start by apologizing to you for two reasons - the first is for writing you such a belated letter (I am even considering of not sending this to you), and the second is for writing to you in this form. I have to confess that I have found it easier to express most of my thoughts with a keyboard instead with a pen and paper. I can always delete the words that I find inappropriate and there is no need to use another paper and waste ink. I know it seems less personal, Allan, but I hope you will still see the effort that I have put in writing you this letter. I guess I am digressing. Back to the point. I am sorry for these two reasons. I hope that you will still appreciate this letter albeit typewritten and belated.

I am in great debt for the letter that I received dated December 20th of last year. I waited a month for it to arrive. A whole month Allan. Every time I go out of my building, I keep on asking the porter if there’s a letter for me with your name on it… I kept praying that it would come safe in my hands, and it did. I was so happy. It made my day, my friend. Your letter, sad as it is, made me so warm and happy that cold day. And I thank you for that gift. No amount of material thing can ever replace what I felt when I first saw your letter. I keep your letter close to me. Somehow, it makes me feel safe, my brother… grounded to this earth that I am so jaded of. I miss you. I hope you know how much I wish to hear your voice right now, to hold you, and to embrace you and touch you. I miss the short spaces that divide us. We used to have that, my friend. I long for the short distance that used to separate us before. I used to ache so much thinking about that, the distance, the physicality between us that can never be crossed or transcended by anything material. A pain that could only be comforted by our conversations, our silence and by our common understanding that what binds us together is deeper and thicker than the blood that ran through our veins. Now time and space has its grip over us. But I keep hoping that somewhere and in some distant future, I might get to embrace you again, and hear your voice. Life, I think, has such a bad taste in humor, my friend. What she finds amusing, I find absurdly unkind. But who am I to complain for we are all swimming in the same cesspool? I try to find the humor in the irony, my friend. I am only comforted by one certainty, and for this I am really certain… that I will always carry you in me where ever I go. You are always in my heart… ever present… continuing… and alive.

I do not know why I call you brother (for you are more than that). But it gives me comfort when I call you my brother. You have always been my protector, in so many ways. You may be younger than me; but you are far older than me in spirit. Michael and I are like infants compared to you. I hope you do not take offense in that, for I believe that you will always be
my elder brother. Someone who will be willing to punch me in the face when I am too much of an asshole. Someone who will be willing to embrace me in public when I am too ashamed to face life. Someone who will be willing to shed his tears when he sees me shedding mine. You.

That is why I carry you always with me.Believe me, my friend you are changing. The words in your letter can attest to that change. You may not see it but I do. Call me foolish, but I still hold that the universe is not that cruel or random to give you a mountain of tribulations that is more than enough for one lifetime without something waiting for you in the end. I have to believe in that Allan. I have to hope. Or else I there will be no use for me existing in this cesspool we’re all swimming in which we call reality.

Sometimes I wonder why life would do this to us, to you…

I began to have arguments with God(orwhatshisnamewhoeverheorsheoritis). Why? I even gave him the finger one time. God never answers of course; it’s not his style. Sometimes, I think that apathy really becomes him.

I try to be thankful for what I have now. For I know that all what I possess now (little as it may seem) may well be taken away from me tomorrow (or rather me taken away from it). Life may be beautiful (or so it seems), but it is clearly devious and cunning. Maybe that is where the randomness of everything comes in. Maybe that is where evil comes in, the randomness in the chaos.

But I believe there is good in the chaos. A painting (even an abstract one that is made up of colors in chaotic motion) becomes beautiful when it is seen as a whole picture. Details maybe important but it is still the whole picture that matters. The entirety. I honestly do not know why I am saying this, but I had this feeling that I should tell you this.

We are but mere carbon based mortals, Allan; swimming in this cesspool we call life. But one thing is different; we know that we are swimming in it. With that knowledge, we move and we exist. And we try to be happy.

---------- but we hope, my friend…----------

If I ever have all the power in the world to change things I hope you know how much I wish to change things for you. I think I can never truly be happy if I know that the people dearest to me are not.

Never stop swimming, brother. Never.

You may have no control of the earth and skies, or the elements. But you are in control of your limbs. I have never prayed much… I find no use for it lately. But when I do, I always pray for the ones I carry in my heart.

The ones that keep me sane.

The ones that keep me moving.

The ones that keep me from shooting myself.

You are one of them brother, friend, beloved.

Remember that I carry you in my heart.


Your brother.

March 8, 2006


I never did send this letter. I honestly do not know why. It's been almost ten years since you became my friend on that hill. Ten years. I wanted to go back to that hill where I met you and Michael. I wanted to pay my respects. He{ll}aven knows I owe her a lot. I have made many wrong decisions in my life Allan. So many wrong turns that I have become regretful of. But climbing that hill wasn't one of them. For it brought me to you.

It's your birthday today. But I guess it isn't that important, knowing you. You'd be tending your farm and probably looking at the pond. But I hope that today you'll stop for a while with whatever it is that you are doing. and just breathe... just for a while... and allow the universe to work for you my dear brother.