I Listen To…
Jay-Z and Kanye West when I’m angry.
Beyonce when I feel like a woman.
One Direction when I’m feeling girly..
Carly Rae Jepsen when I’m feeling like a flirt (which I’m not).
The Beatles when I need inspiration to write.
I want the world to shine the way it was supposed to, when I knew me and I knew you.
When I understood what ‘love’ meant and smelled ground diamonds like they were as precious as the salt of my soul.
I wish I could live in that time and allow myself to understand everything the way I was supposed to.
I found her letter wrapped in a tie-dyed bandanna soaked in white powder, wedged in between the gun she used to shoot up the building where I slept and the guitar she broke in half.
She lay on the bed with her shirt open and her shoes bloodied.
It had been hard, I could tell.
But she didn’t look dead.
Selma once told me she knew a girl who sold shampoo.
“Summer-only shampoo,” she called it. “Sold only in the summer.”
I asked Selma what made that shampoo so special. Why was it sold only in the summer?
“She tells me it’s made of sunlight,” Selma said. “Of the rays in the early morning.”
“But why would we need shampoo made of the rays of the sun in the summer when we encounter them every day?”
“I asked her the same thing,” Selma replied. “The rays make us happy in the summer. They remind us to rest and relax; and to wait for the days when the moon will be up for long and the nights will be cold. They remind us to stay positive in the moments when it seems like the only thing we’ll ever want in our lives is to stay positively miserable about everything around us.”
Acceptance is the gift of maturity. With it, you can wake up feeling so much more… positive about the things around you that you forget why you even cared so much in the first place. Why you put so much time and effort into something that was never even worth it.
Now that hurts.
But then, there comes a point when things must end. When you must force yourself to be agreeable to the reality of goodbyes. Surely, it may be quite hard to do so at first… but the rewards are endless. Maturity is one of them.
Maturity is something that entails letting go, and leaving behind the times of our innocence for the times when we will find ourselves struggling with the worst of what life has to offer. Surely, such unfortunate realities are not meant to exist… but they do. Idealism is no cure to the challenges of everyday life, and it is with maturity that we are able to face these things head on, and without a worry in the world.
The best time to do it is when no one’s watching.
When it’s late at night and everyone’s asleep.
Take the nearest one you can find and sit down.. calm yourself.
Stay relaxed in between heavy tears.
And then, slice.
Force it in as hard as you can. It doesn’t need to bleed.
Bite your tongue if the pain is too much.
Hide the knife when they come in.
Pretend to smile
Even when your eyes are red and puffy.
Take it out when they leave
Blood is no object.
In the morning, the scars are gone.
But the pain is forever.
Dear people who want to increase the LRT fees by August,
First of all, do know that we understand that you have been subsidizing our train fees for too long, and in some small way… we thank you for that (I guess). Or should we… considering the money you used to pay does come from our taxes, doesn’t it? Anyways… that’s a whole other story.
Back to the point. Even though you fine people have been subsidizing our fees all this time, that doesn’t mean you’ve been giving the Filipino commuter a five-star train ride.
Case/s In Point:
a. Turnstiles that don’t work —> What is the use of having 8 turnstiles wherein commuters can insert their card and head to their respective destinations if only THREE of them work? Small problems like this can cause quite the congestion during rush hour. Surely, you may say that inserting your card in the turnstile and leaving happens to be something that takes less than a minute, but that doesn’t excuse the fact that it’s a problem that NEEDS to be solved. You may not realize it, but those couple of seconds that commuters spend waiting to insert their card in the turnstiles during rush hour can equate to them being late for school or for work. And being late is NEVER GOOD.
b. Bathrooms that are either too little to support rush hour crowds that need to pee/too dirty and too darn dark… –> Look, I’m not asking for Rob Magnolia standard toilets here. I’m sure it’s going to be too much to demand things like toilet bowls that automatically flush and automatic faucets and soap dispensers. So I’ll just say this: toilet paper, toilets that flush… more lights, more stalls (kahit dalawa man lang.). Did I forget to mention annual cleaning, maybe? The fact that LRT toilets are public is no excuse for not keeping them hygienic.
c. Choppy sound systems –> It would be of great help to the tired commuter to actually be guided on the train. Hindi yung siya pa yung titingin sa labas para lang malaman kung anong station na. Besides, what’s the use of having some disembodied voice play between stations if that voice isn’t even clear enough to be heard by commuters?
d. Vendo ticket systems that actually WORK. Ticket booth lines would probably not be as long as they are in the mornings if those automated ticket booth thingies which supply commuters with cards aren’t all out of order. Consider fixing these machines. PLEASE.
Now I’m going to be understanding about this. I don’t want to be misconstrued as one of the many complainers present in social media, so I will say this. I’ll be very much willing to pay the increased fare if I see changes/improvements in the problem areas I’ve mentioned above. But if I don’t, and these price hikes continue.. then I’ll be very, very, very disappointed in this government…. know that my regard for this government is not positive. Why?
I think it’s pretty obvious. If you’re stupid enough to not understand what I’m trying to say, than consider rethinking why you’re in the government in the first place. All I’m saying is that I’ll be very much willing to do my part… if you’ll be willing to do yours.
P.S. In fairness, the employees of the LRTA happen to be some of the friendliest people in government. Amalayer was nothing short of stupid when she decided to bitch around in Santolan 😉