writing about not writing

There are inchoate blog ideas floating in my head, but none seems stubborn enough to take form. One glows for a few seconds and then goes pfft! Buh-bye. Another dances and dazzles, only to pirouette to nothingness even before I can say hello.

I am fearing a dry spell.

I just went through my blog archives midway into writing this post and found this, written just around this time of year in 2005! What’s with June that seems to stop me in my writing tracks?

I dread living through another no-writing season! It’s bad for the heart. Like a lump in the throat that doesn’t go away for days even if you bawl away or scream to high heavens. Like an itch that taunts you because you can never scratch exactly where it is. Aaagh!

But I will not go without a fight. Let this post be my declaration of war.

No to writer’s block.


I’m back from Lamut, Ifugao! I joined friends from The Navigators and TRUMPETS ArtReach in donating used books (some new ones too!) to the local science high school and conducting workshops on reading and stage performance. Much thanks to our hosts from the Tribal Gospel Mission!

I miss the fruit shakes, the mealtime humor (‘Dontcha!’ and ‘lactating cows’), the fresh air and animal sounds, the smiles on the locals’ faces, the amazing stories of the Bible school students, the impromtu bonding sessions with old friends, the delight of making new friends…

More stories after I unpack the backpack and apply liniment on my sore back. Will post pics as soon as our able photographers Dan and Roovin upload them 🙂 No doubt, this was a weekend well-spent.

warning: random

Life isn’t as organized and neat as we would have it. And so I write this post without a clear sense of where it’s going. I beg your indulgence for a little randomness.

It’s interesting how small things can light up your day. Like a free train ride. On my way to work after a three-day weekend, the security guard at the MRT station is waving to passengers to just swing through the station’s toll gates. I don’t hear exactly what he is saying (I have earphones plugged in), but it doesn’t take long to realize that, hey, he’s telling people that the ride today, 109th Philippine Independence Day, is free. Woohoo. Our heroes didn’t die for nothing after all…

Long chat with my sis in Japan tonight. She has a cold and is staying home. Throat no longer sore, but the nose is still a bit stuffy. Drink lots of fluids, I admonish her; and sleep – lots and lots of it. I send her the drafts of articles I’ve written for, well, a writing project. Sister transforms into my personal cheerleader, praising my writing and making younger bro feel like he’s the greatest wordsmith of all time – better than whoever you can name! For a second, it doesn’t matter that one of my pieces needs heavy revisions per editor and reviewer’s comments. I try to tinker with the words here and there, but nothing great seems to emerge. And so I decide to write another day.

We chat about gifted people (like the 27-year old Pinoy who gave the commencement address at Harvard Law and another lawyer who had the same distinction in 2005, who turns out to be the same bedimpled lawyer who was once part of a lawyer team that sis fought against in a case in Davao, which sis won! Hah).

We also chat about family (anecdotes about nephew Tim, a brother’s predicament, keeping things from our parents). We chat about pimples and how she thinks pork and Coke are the culprits of her acne outbreak. If that were the same case for me, I say, I’d rather pop my zits every morning than shun pork and Coke forever.

We chat and chat until I realize that it’s almost midnight (and therefore almost 1AM in Japan). We both need sleep now. Especially her, because of her stuffy nose. Wasn’t I the one who told her to gets lotsa sleep?

Rewind. Before our goodnights, we talk about something insightful that minister brother said – about a bodega, a bicycle, our nephew Tim, and people God keeps in the bodega. It’s amazing and inspirational. But I’ll write about that another day. That one won’t sound well written in random mode.

Meantime, why is a drunk man screaming outside the gate? Is the woman with whom he is in a screamfest his wife or mistress? Why do I care?

Because they’re noisy and I can’t sleep when it’s noisy!

Neither can I write with any semblance of sense or order when I’m supposed to be sleeping but can’t. Hence, the randomness. But I warned you already.

‘one little two little three…’


Pinoy household has more gadgets than Indians

Is it just me, or is there something, er, odd about this headline? Hmm…

I don’t know about your household, but I thought I’d check mine. Three computers (one is a dead desktop), one or two portable audio players, cellphones (of course), a TV set with a busted DVD player, a stereo component gathering dust…

Searched under the bed, in the closets, in the toilet, under my pile of dirty laundry…

Nope, no Indians there.