Saturday, October 21

on marjorie {The Confessions of an Insomniac XII }

marjorie was my first highschool crush. yeah, my first highschool crush was actually a girl. don't look surprised, i too, was once in highschool. so, yeah {kiLL me aLdrin!}. i dunno why i had this huge crush on her. thing is, she was not even the hottest girl in my highschool. if you'd rank her, she'd be somewhere between numbers 31-40 on the top 100 girls in my school {that included the grade 6 elementary students {psycho}. ok. not bad. still she was not the hottest. but. there's something about marjorie. {no it's not the gel product she used from time to time! perves!} she was, well, kinda white. like pale white. like emily rose white. back in highschool, i had this fixation over white skin {sue me, i'm filipino and i was exposed to fucking whiteness all the time! white bread. white school uniform. white milk {?! duh}. white commercial models. white teenybopper heartthrobs. white chocolate. white this. white that. yadda yadda yadda}. and she had freckles. back then {well maybe until now, i really don't know} if you had freckles in a tropical country, yer a thing of beauty {freckled people all around the world move to me coconut republic! don't mind the mega typhoons and the political upheavals! bask in the adoration of well, UNFRECKLED PEOPLE}. and back then, when i was young, innocent {slap me} and pure {?}, she was my thing of beauty. marjorie.

first year highschool. i saw her. her section was just beside mine

{a note to the non-filipino reader: most schools in me republic have no homerooms, we have sections named after saints, flowers, trees, popstars, breakfast cereals, corrupt government officials, designer labels and historical figures}

so yeah, only a wall that held two blackboards {which were green!} seperated me and marjorie. that was romance for me. like you and me against the blackboards. i saw her the first time during recess of my first day in my freshman year. for the first time in my life - i did a double take on a GIRL. i was like, whoa. freckles... hmmmm. freckles... {imagine homer simpson thinkin about eating the 100 cheese slices of america in his fridge}.

i found out that she was related to some famous child actress who studied in my school and she transferred to this school yadda yadda because they had to move yadda yadda yadda.

marjorie. it sounded like margarine. she had long hair. cute button nose. about my height. and them freckles. hmmmmmm, 100 cheese sclices of america freckles. i wuz in lurrrve.

ok, lemme divulge a little secret. i was a big nerd in my school. i was lanky. scrawny {still am by the way}. athletically challenged. and catholic. in the great cosmology of my lil old highschool in manila, i was but a some peasant who secretly adored them gods and godesses and minor dieties - them varsity players, them cheerleaders, them guys rappin to vanilla ice {ew} and mc hammer {ew}, them guys who danced to venga boys music {!}, them rockers and pre-emo's who were considered stoners just 'coz they looked like stoners and the janitor {well, the janitor has a lot, i mean a whole lotta powers... so don't mess with the campus help!}. i was a geek who really wanted to be super kewl and secretly wished that i was one of them. but i was not. but marjorie was. there lay the big problem. even though a mere blackboard seperated us, we were very very much worlds apart. and it pained me.

i remember writing her a love letter. i didn't know how it got to her and i don't really remember if i gave it or left it or put it in a book summat or told a person who told a person who gave it to the other person and gave it to her whatnot but marjorie got hold of me loveletter.

she replied.

i read.

she said.

the usual spiel.

thank you for the letter... very flattered... you seem nice... somebody's courting me. mark... your classmate... i'd like us to be friends... if that's ok...

i didn't cry. coz i read it on my desk. i thought i wanted to cry back then but somehow, the primal male instict got a hold of me. never cry {beats chest and gives a masculine huff, then looks at the mirror to fix the bangs}. but it pained me. i was crestfallen. i put the letter in my backpack after i read it. coming dismissal at 4 pm, the letter would find its way to the trash can. the janitor probably read it.

my first year in highschool. my first crush. my first heartbreak.

life went on in my highschool. then came my sophomore or junior year, i really don't remember. us geek peasants managed to find a way to climb the social ladder even for one notch. apparently, the supposedly "brainy" students can be trusted by them old people in the faculty room and the prinicipals office and even the citizen's army training office {we had paramilitary training back then}. i was one of them peasants who seized the opportunity. that i did. it helped me gain a bit of influence and a little amount of respect. still i bore in mind that i could never be like them... them gods and goddesses and deities. i'd still look at her from afar. she was already a hallway away from me. she still had freckles. she had more bust size. she colored her hair a coupla times. i'd try to avoid her in the hallways coz my mates form the student council and the army training would tease me like hell. we'd both be embarassed. so i avoided her. i had my own little world, and then i guess she had her own, but slightly bigger. i still love her freckles. and oh yeah, i was already coming to grips with my being, well, me.

then came the beauty pageant. she was miss venezuela or maybe mexico or panama some third world south american country i dunno. alls i know was that she was competing for the miss united nations pageant {i know, highschool kills you slowly! good thing it only happens once}. i was one of them ushers in the pageant. one of the judges was some up and coming actress on tv and film {i could still remember that actress spraying evian atomizer like she was gonna die or summat}. the whole school was watching. i could even see some college people stopping by to watch.

marjorie was one of the top 5 finalists. it was question and answer portion. there was a question, about abortion and her opinion of it {we were in a catholic school so don't expect so much}.

the host read the question.

silence. {you could here the janitor jerking off in the background somewhere}

then she answered.

"babies... babies..... god made babies."

silence. {even the janitor stopped jerking off}

i heard the 'thank you' bit of the host. then the clap came in trickles. then the snickers. some of them even looked at me. one guy actually had the audacity to laugh at my face and ask me if i was really in to her back in freshman year. i wanted to punch him.

i maintained a straight face. i learned my lesson. don't ever show yer emotions among lions. or else they attack. {national geographic baby}. she didn't make it to the top three, i think. i really didn't care {or did i?}. at the end of the pageant, i looked at her from where i was standing. she was still on the stage. she was still smiling. but what i saw something else. i dunno what it was. maybe sadness. or courage. or fear. or angst. or just plain happiness{?}. i dunno. i just saw something else. then i tried to shake myself from the trance. then i noticed that she had no freckles. her face was covered with make up and lipstick. i realized i liked her more with freckles.

the day ended. we had to clean up. tomorrow was another day. it'll be the talk of the campus for a coupla weeks or so. anyways. within a month it'll be history.

i learned a very important lesson that day.

i learned that highschool is just a myth - woven intricately and read and told passionately by all who participate in that myth. and in the end, when we are demystified by the myth that is highschool, we realize that we are all but the same. people.

she had to migrate to the states a year later. i was in my senior year, methinks. she actually talked to me before she left that month. she came looking for me and handed me a letter. she told me that she was leaving for the states. she wished me goodluck. i wished her the same. i forgot the contents of the letter. i really did. but what i never forgot was that she talked to me. we had a conversation {which was four years in the making}. and when i was talking to her, i noticed that she still had freckles.

post script about 6 {or 7 or 8?} months ago, i was browsing through some profiles in friendster. then i saw her. shit. man. it was really her. she's somewhere in california now. i sent her a message. i didn't tell her who i was. she replied. she had no clue who the heck i was. i didn't answer back. i'd like to keep her in my memory. the way i want to remember her. i guess she got rid of them freckles.

Wednesday, October 4

i have no fire in my loins

So says my Chinese doctor.

Being the gullible tourist that I am, I went to a Traditional Chinese Medicine clinic this morning right after gym. My Chinese friend and gym buddy {I so hate that word, it makes me sound like I'm some gym bunny who's on steriods... maybe I should change it to 'health partner'?} took me to this TCM {Traditional Chinese Medicine} clinic which was just conveniently placed beside the gym where I go to. Omar was giddy {why the fuck did I use that word?} since it's his first time to go to a TCM practitioner.

You see, I've been telling my Chinese friend about me being interested in Chinese medicine and acupuncture and I told him that I wanted to try it sometime. And since it was a holiday {National Week in China, sorta like their Independence Day - fuck the Chinese are waaaaay too lucky to have a one week holiday}, my friend and I decided to go to the TCM clinic right beside the gym.

And so there we were, apparently the ONLY patients for the day {slow day I guess, but it made me wonder that MAAAAAAAAYBE this was a wrong idea. But it was the holidays anyways}. Anyways, the doctor {or practitioner or shaman or whatever you may call her for your very own convenience} checked me out. No, not THAT kinda checking somebody out {perves!She was nearly in her 60's for cryin' out loud!}. She did the usual stuff - checked my pulse, made me say "AAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHH", checked my eyes and my skin tone and then asked some random questions like my age, weight, and which cosmetics I used {hehe... kidding... fuckin' Freud}. the whole time she was asking me questions she was speaking in Chinese so my friend had to translate.

Then after five minutes she gave her diagnosis.

I have no fire in my loins.

And I was like, uh-huh...

Then she goes on explaining to me that my kidneys were rather cold and lacked the necessary fire. Then she asked me if there was anything wrong with me for the past days or weeks or months.

I wanted to tell her that I was an emotional wreck becuase I was an unwanted child and that I was gangraped by aliens in their space pod when I was twelve and that nobody believed me when I told my story to people which resulted to a major serious damage to my inner child - which was the main reason why I couldn't commit to someone even if my very life was at stake, thus giving me no other alternative than to commit myself to masturbating with my left hand on Tuesdays and Thursdays and with my right on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Saturday's are laundry days and Sunday's the Sabbath {duh! I'm still Catholic, you know!}.

But I digressed. I told her that I have been having major neck pains and I was feeling a bit lethargic these past coupla weeks. And guessed what she told me:

I have no fire in my loins.

She then gave me a prescription, well more like a concoction of 20 ++ something herbs and shit {she says they're all natural} which I would boil for 40 minutes and then drink twice a day. She prescribed three packets of that mixture {one pack I can 'reuse' for 3 times. YAY! ugh}. So I went to the 'pharmacy' to buy them herbs and shit which was also INSIDE the clinic {nice M.O. they have here, coz I just asked for the list of herbs so I can buy it in a drugstore that also sells TCM shit and whatnots but she insisted that I buy it here because there are some secret herbs that she does not want to reveal to the general populace}. So I had no choice but to buy from their stash. But I had fun watching the attendant mix the herbs. She goes to the 'pharmacy' where you can find a huge cabinet filled with drawers {think Dewey Decimal System cabinets in old libraries} and she has this weighing scale in her hand to measure the exact amount of herbs that I need and then she lays all the herbs on a big brown piece of paper and voila! - you have your own prescription drug, TCM style.

Soooooooo, I'm sitting here right now typing this blog while I'm waiting for the decoction {the by product of the herbs when boiled} to cooldown a bit. Yep, I just finished boiling it in an earthenware pot which I just bought from Walmart {hey, I was excited! It's my first time to take Chinese medicine so why not go the whole nine yards?} and put the decoction {why do I seem to like that word?} in a not-so-big-but-big-enough glass bottle {Walmart} and I could smell the scents emanating from me kitchen...

By God it smells like CAT PISS!!!

I'm thinking of chasing it with brandy or maybe loads and loads of water. Dear Lord I'm having goosebumps just thinking about it. What the fuck was I thinking?

Hell, I payed for it {quite expensive mind you, but I bet my ass it's more expensive if I buy them herbs in the States or even in the Philippines}. And besides, Chinese Medicine has existed looooooong before Western Medicine and there must be a goddamn reason why it's still here and practiced by millions, no, BILLIONS of people [including a good number of non-Chinese people}. So Im'ma try it {Go Ninja!}. You only live once so why not try everything, eh? {although drinking the shitjuice might give me sudden death}. Meh. Hell, it might even cure my erectile dysfunction.

It still smells like cat piss.

God I hope I don't O.D.