Monthly Archives: February 2015
Have you ever been deceived or bashed? Treacherously treated? Cheated even? Were you bullied and taken for granted? Have you been ignored, uncared for or maltreated? Were you deserted by your friends and those you hold dear became disloyal to you? Were you envied and continuously made a slave to jealousy? Were you fooled most of the time and felt that the world is conspiring to bring you down? Note that these are but trivialities, or in plain language, inanities.
Dismiss it. You were born to be yourself and not a specimen of anything.
Better, forget all those that were thrown at you. At best, look at your situation from a different perspective. Those matters you felt you were subjected are all but nuisance no matter how grand you perceive them to be. You will just be weakened by it.
Place yourself therefore at the centre of the universe. Never mind your environment for a while. But don’t be selfish, just be yourself: generous, thoughtful and unaffected. Push irritating thoughts out from your consciousness and begin to reinvent your mind to accommodate only what in your perception is enjoyable.
Let us have a term for every enjoyable moment. Now, take time and focus on the following simple acts:
- Eating (even if it is just a snack size for your meal)
- Travelling (even if its just a walk in the corner of your neighbourhood)
- Bantering (even if its just a simple street corner soiree, or break time gathering )
- Reading (if you have a penchant for literature)
- Writing (if you have not lost yet your desire for diary keeping; this may also mean posting in your favourite cyberspace site)
- Gardening (if you have a space)
- Watching movies (even on DVD)
- Sleeping (if there is any chance to take a nap anywhere)
- Tinkering a hobby (anything that brings about concentration, it could be arts or sports)
- Praying (just be thankful for everything)
If there is a recipe that could be made to make man fully aware of himself, it is never found on anything dictated from elsewhere. It can only be found within the inner self of a person.
The list above can be expanded to include others depending on the person. But I tell you this, if any of the above enumeration is not enjoyable, try to disturb a person while he is doing it and you get a hell of a frown or some unfortunate reaction.
Annoy him while eating, impede him while travelling, interrupt him while bantering, hide the book he is reading, lose the pen he is using, ruin his garden, conceal his DVD player, shout while he is sleeping, bother him while tinkering or make a scandal while he is praying. I tell you that the agitated person is capable on calling all the demons to get back at you!
One can only live once and there is no encore. Disregard trivialities or benefit from them if possible but don’t forget to take pleasure in everything there is.
“My dear child” said Thetis, mother of Greek warrior Achilles while counselling her son who was asking for blessings before going to war, “be happily married. You can live in peace with a wonderful family, a doting wife and wonderful children. They will love you truly. Their children will always remember you with fondness and their children’s children…. and then, your name will be forgotten. If you go to war, your courage will be remembered, your greatness preserved even for thousands of years. But in that war, while you will be celebrated and honoured, will be your doom. That day you fought would also be your last.”
I never, even for a while, entertained the thought of being remembered for ages. Much more so, believe that I am one of those characters I constantly would look up to with reverence. Suffice it to say, I merely wanted to be remembered as a good child, a doting son to a wonderful mother. But mothers are all the same, whether mythical or common place.
And just like in mythology, I remember mother counselled me sometime ago which nearly corresponded to what Thetis said to her son who was on the way to battle the Trojans. My mother directed me, “My dear son, I will always be with you and I will always guide you everywhere, just be obedient. Study well and be a scholar someday if you can. It will be your legacy and mine.”
Like Achilles who got into war, I went to school. I tried to be an obedient child but it was, by far, a great effort to be a scholar. I merely contented myself instead on recalling that which I read about a Chinese sage who wrote,” If you want to be remembered, do any of this: write a book, plant a tree or sire a son.” The sage never mentioned any reference to war and so, I took note of it and heartedly committed his aphorism in my mind. Later in the day, as I thread life’s convoluted paths, I was able to write several books. Not contented, from the proceeds of my works, I was able to buy a parcel of lot where I planted trees. Not contented still, I sired children. That way, I can fulfil what Achilles tried before but got doomed but in my case, I am still alive to see what the world had intended as far as my accomplishments have amounted to.
And, with everything thrown along the way, from rusted nails to shards of broken glasses and occasional dead cats, this time without any shade of threatening spears and swords, although there were bits of painful glances and innuendoes, there is fun.
Writing made me write more (prose and poetry) and encouraged me further to publish so much. Planting trees was so enervating that I even tried to miniaturize nature. And of course, the familial way, multiplying my clan. That would make any Greek hero a run for his money. That in itself, again, is doubling the fun.
I even upped the ante by honing my skills in fine arts, like caricatures, portrait sculpture and painting. With a space in between time, I tried my hand and trained my ear in music, playing the guitar, the electric organ and the drums. I never auditioned in media but there I was for almost a year on airwaves as an opinion broadcaster. I exerted efforts too in automotive, photography, culinary science, acupuncture, drafting, surveying, publishing and in martial arts, just about anything my hands could lay on.
That was of course my way of expressing my devotion to my mother whose affection to her son cannot be equalled.
Compressing everything in a short lifespan just to be remembered at times is the curse of mythical figures which to a large extent is a recipe for enjoyment. It could be copied, it could be a template, it could be an inspiration. This is what every mother wanted for their children in the first place.
Mothers indeed can push their children to the limits of their capabilities. Had it not for Sta. Monica, the Church would not have a St. Agustine. Had it not for Nancy Hanks Lincoln and step mother Sarah Bush Johnson, Abraham would have been one of the bums in slave infested USA. Had it not for Sarah Chaplain, Charlie would not have contributed his genius to the world of entertainment. So on and so forth.
All mothers are the same, well, except that their children had a choice to be different.
I could not believe when my precocious neighbor said that a 45 day old chicken is more accomplished than a 27,375 day old man! Well, I was not actually surprised. I was stunned!
I immediately got hold of my decade old calculator and began a mathematical exploration on man’s lifespan.
For this purpose, let us presume that man is given a period of 75 years as his average timeline. Translated into hours, it means that man has to consume (75 (years) divided by 12 months = 900 (months) x 30 (days) = 27,000 (days) x 24 (hours) = 648,000 hours. Yes, that is right, 648,000 hours. Now, let us do some subtractions and divisions along the way. Let us deduct the time he spent sleeping, eating, relaxing, the so called unproductive period.
Average period a person ideally spends in sleeping: 8 (hours a day) x 30 ( days amonth) = 240 months x 12 months = 2,880 (days) x 75 years = 216,000 hours.
Average period a person normally spends in eating: 1 (hour per meal) or 3 (hours a day) x 30 months = 90 (months) x 12 (months a year) = 1,080 (months) x 75 (years) = 81,000 hours.
Average period a person spends in relaxation: 2 (hours per stretch) or 6 (hours a day) x x 30 (days a month) = 90 (months) x 12 (months a year) = 720 (months) x 75 (years) = 54,000 hours.
All in all, a person normally consumes an approximate total of 351,000 hours sleeping, eating and relaxing during his lifespan. If we will deduct this period from the total hours he is given (648,000 – 351,000), he has a balance of 297,000 hours to consume actively. Translated into years (297,000 hours divided by 30 (days) = 4,120 (months) divided by 12 (months) = 34.375 years. It means that a person during his lifespan has an active 34 years to spend inhabiting the sentient world around.
Let us go further. Let us presume that a person enters school at 5 years old and graduates at around 20 years old. That easily translates into a 15 year education stretch. Let us assume that a person spends an average of 7 hours per day in school ( 7 (days) x 365 (days a year) = 2,555 (days) x 15 (years of schooling) = 38,325 (hours spent) divided by 24 (hours per day) = 1,596 (days) divided by 365 (days a year) = 4.37 (years).
Now let us subtract 4 years (of schooling) from his 34 years, it would easily yield us 30. The lifespan of 75 therefore has a quality 30 year period, an expansive window so to speak, to apply in appreciating everything the world could offer—from family ties, to accomplishing something , from travelling to serving, from fighting to loving. Lose it then the chicken has everything to crow about.
This 30 year period, I suspect, is the same timeline the law applies when appreciating a penalty of Life Imprisonment to mean 30 years.
Moral lesson: Be a law abiding citizen therefore.
The national average lifespan of a Filipino is 75 years old. It could be broken down into 912 months, or 2,281 weeks or 27,375 days. This means that a person can manage his life within the purview of years, months, weeks or days, depending on his preference or lifestyle. In excess of the national average, it is already a bonus, something given providentially or at times perceived as a curse. Less than that is a completely different story.
During the period, a person can prepare on how to spend or use time. He can have as many skills or assets he wanted to accumulate to devote his given period or merely spend it, unmindful of any span or stretch he needs. It’s an individual choice.
In 1999, New York Times featured an article which explained the seven stages of man: Infancy, Childhood, Adolescence, Young Adulthood, Middle Age, Early Old Age and Later Old Age. Each stage is memorialized in his specific situation. Education is therefore critical in the formation of each; for it is in training that man gains a number of concepts that would determine the quality of his life. One of the concepts is time.
The world in all its expansive glory is divided also into time zones.
Basically, time is what we perceive in terms of how our planet moves. We use several ways to determine with precision what time it is—-from the ancient sun dial to recent day digital watches. Not only is day or night determined according to hourly calibration but to date, man can even measure it through milliseconds. Profoundly, time can also be seen according to Biblical albeit philosophical considerations like “There is an appointed time for everything; and there is a time for every event under heaven—a time to give birth and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.” (Ecclesiastes 3).
What time has given us is for us to use it in the most appropriate way according to how we define what is appropriate. There are those who dilly dally and there are those who are in a hurry. There are those who vacillate and there are those who are punctual. There are those who do not mind time at all and those who are always conscious of it. At the end of the day, it defines how we lived life or how we spent time. Wasting it is disregarding life’s grand meaning.
There is a school of thought that says time is a gift. In China, it means present, something given not as a token but as a reward. It is up to the receiver whether to keep, use or lose it. Gifts are memorable depending on how it is appreciated. In other Asian countries, it is something to play around with; something to evade, something to depend on.
In the animal kingdom, there is no such thing as time. Everything is guided according to its lifespan, not measured by time but by instinct. Hence, a cat eats only when it’s hungry not because it is meal time already. A fly achieves its maturity and fades away on the 13th day of its existence. Time is not an essential part of their lives; it is their lives that guide the time. For the plant kingdom, time varies according to environment. There are those that wither not because of its lifespan but because of the climate and there are those that live for thousand of years.
For man, there is always Father Time. His existence depends on its application; the quality of how he will live is based on how conscious he would apportion it. Time is at times a blessings, to a certain extent a nuisance. But it is constant and not even the heavens can alter it.
For the greater mankind, time is measured as an absolute consideration that contains everything that exists in the universe. It waits for no one. It is the most potent force that cannot be equalled, much more so challenged by wealth, power and pedigree. It has no center and no side. It is fleeting and just; objective and cold. It is always here, there and everywhere.
At best, it can only be observed in a respectable manner.
With both boxers called into the square and the referee introduced, the so called Fight of the Century has begun. Three major boxing belts are at stake, WBO, WBC and WBA. It goes without saying the prestigious Pound for Pound crown too.
It is May 2, 2015, a Saturday. The main event: Mayweather the early favourite with no loss in his 47 fight card and Pacquiao, the acknowledged people’s champ with 57 wins and 5 losses trailing as secondary favourite and also the toast of the gambling world. The moment has come. The bell rings for round one.
ROUND ONE: Mayweather walks into the middle of the ring with Pacquaio approaching, both legs moving and arms jabbing. Both fighters are trying to figure out the angles. Mayweather gives a doting jab, he has the longer arm. Pacquiao ducks and gives a one-two blow. The audience is agitated; shouts are heard from both corners. There is a clear partisan divide. Both fighters make a margin in between trying to size each other up. Pacquiao tries to move forward with punches then side steps. Mayweather retreats and makes a shoulder roll. Mayweather tries to attack Pacquaio with a sudden right jab. The jab hits home. Pacquiao felt the blow. Pacquaio repays the blow with successive blows, each blow hurts Mayweather. Mayweather retreats and positions himself in the middle. Pacquaio aiming for the body, side steps and jabs. Mayweather carefully watches Pacquaio and jabs to keep his opponent from a distance. The pugilists want to showcase a clinic but they have as yet to collide. Both Mayweather and Pacquiao want to wear each other down by constant moving. Mayweather backtracks then jab, Pacquiao moves forward then sidesteps. Round One goes to Pacquiao.
Instant replay: Pacquiao’s volume punch is showcased in slow motion.
ROUND TWO: As soon as the bell rings, both fighters immediately move into the center of the ring. Referee backpedals and the two boxers engage on a one-on-one jabbing. Pacquiao’s jab is intended to hit the side of Mayweather. Mayweather’s jab is aimed at Pacquiao’s jaw. There is an exchange of jabs and uppercuts, Mayweather is targeting Pacquiao’s head, Pacquiao is aiming at the belly of Mayweather. The exchanges make both fighters entangled for a while, the referee steps in and both retreated to size up again each other. Referee gestures to both fighters to engage once again. Mayweather retreats and backpedals to lure Pacquiao to move forward. Pacquiao approaches Mayweather on the side. Mayweather attempts a straight punch which landed on Pacquiao’s eye brow. Pacquiao was stunned but becomes aggressive. Pacquiao heads towards Mayweather for another one-on-one but Mayweather dances away and eludes confrontation. Pacquiao trails Mayweather, Mayweather dances away. Round Two goes to Mayweather.
Instant Replay: Mayweather punches Pacquiao on the eyebrow, perspiration exploded away in slow high definition motion.
ROUND THREE: The bell rings and both fighters engage immediately. Pacquiao extends his right arm straight to the face of Mayweather, Mayweather gives a two successive puches which hit Pacquaio’s globes. Pacquiao gives four successive blows and another at the body of Mayweather. Mayweather smiles and punches back with the left. Mayweather’s right hand encircles to ready another punch. Pacquiao counters it with successive blows to the head and body. Mayweather dances to his corner and faces Pacquiao sideways. Pacquiao sidesteps but was hit by a wild blow. Pacquiao tries to recover by engaging Mayweather to another one-on-one but Mayweather opts to dance away. Round three goes to Mayweather.
Instant Replay: Mayweather sidesteps to punch Pacquiao in slow motion.
ROUND FOUR: Both fighters square in the middle, Mayweather on his side, Pacquiao sidesteps. Pacquiao swings a blow to the body hitting Mayweather. Mayweather gives a left hook but misses, a right hook this time connects. It glazes the eyebrows of Pacquiao but Pacquiao easily recovers and mounts a flurry of several punches to Mayweather’s face. Mayweather retreats, Pacquaio senses weakness on Mayweather’s knees, tiptoes for the jugular. Pacquaio backpedals to check whether Mayweather is just feighning a la Marquez, dances to the sides and moves forward then dances backwards. Mayweather moves forward and engages Pacquaio on another one-on-one, Pacquaio gives a flurry of punches each hitting Mayweather’s face and body, Mayweather thereafter retreats by dancing away towards the corner for some breathing spell. Pacquiao is aggressive tries to cut corner but Mayweather slips through and dances away. Round four goes to Pacquaio.
Instant Replay: Pacquiao gives Mayweather a flurry of punches which Mayweather could not shield in slow motion.
ROUND FIVE: Pacquiao’s face has signs of bruises on the eyebrows and left eye, Mayweather’s cheeks are already fluffy, the right eye bulging to a slit. Clearly both fighters have given punches that really matters. Pacquaio weaves in and hits Mayweather’s body. Mayweather issues a blind punch and hit the head of Pacquaio. Both fighters engage in a tit-for-tat punching. Pacquiao weaves to the right, Mayweather is disoriented but finds his target, makes a shoulder roll and is hit below his rib cage. Pacquaio relently gives a flurry of punches but Mayweather further backpedals to evade being hit. Mayweather springs back to give a right and left hook, each finding its mark but is met with equal ferocity in the flurry of punches Pacquiao is dishing out. Blood is oozing from the nose of Mayweather and on the cheek of Pacquiao. Both fighters are bleeding and become ferocious for the kill. Pacquaio proves to be more aggressive, Mayweather weaves in and out and jabs a one-two combination. Both fighters have found the range. Both fighters receiving equal hit. The round is a tie.
Instant Replay: Pacquaio dishing out a flurry of punches. Mayweather hitting Pacquaio with a right hook. Shown in slow motion.
TO BE CONTINUED.
From the standpoint of the universe, there is no such thing as death. Everywhere there is life. Whether it is minute or gargantuan, whether it is a particle or galactic, it is life in its infinite formation. What has been referred to as death is merely a stage, even that which has been said of birth. Life is everything that animates and that which is composed in every place from a smallest microbial pit to the entire cosmos.
What has been understood as life is consciousness however. Man and every living creature have it for that matter. It is consciousness which makes a living matter survive and evolve at a glance. And just the same, consciousness is nothing but an element which is a mere quality but never a significant part of existence. It is a major component of life though and it by itself has limitations but expresses no end. As a matter of fact, everything in the universe is eternal has no conclusion. It is never bound by anything.
Time and everything are but minor concerns and those which have been considered as natural laws were merely labels defined by Man to provide parameters in his quest to understand everything in his environment. But that environment is still restricted in scope, that is, up to where his mind could reach only. That is the miracle, some kind of a mystery, a phenomenon which can never be determined even by the most advanced technology known to mankind. Even Professor Stephen Hawking, a genius of a scientist could only define a glimpse of the scientific truth.
From the time life evolved as we understood it to be in this part of the universe, nothing was left to accident or chance. Everything is shaped according to how it should be. Billions of years on earth may only be a millisecond compared with the period flashed on the galaxy.
Even for a while if Jupiter, the biggest planet in the solar system would be weighed against that of the third smallest, the earth, the match is almost incomparably be immeasurable. But there it is, Jupiter contributes to a designed fixture which earth needs to fulfil its role. Jupiter serves as a shelter to various threatening comets that might have ruined what is believed as life on earth.
In contrast, the universe of, say, the ants may seem different from that of Man. Or, from that of vegetation. Viewed on the most powerful microscope, the smallest particle would look almost similar to that of the entire galaxy. The smallest, that which would never even be seen in naked eye correspond neatly to that of the grandest in the heavens. From this equation, there is life in between the invisible and the largely visible; hence there is life everywhere without death at all.
Man should rejoice at the thought that he has never left at all and that he merely continued life as it started somewhere before and would last as long as it should be in a perpetual motion. Life not elsewhere as contemplated in some life hereafter configuration but on the ground within the universe itself.
Man, like everything everywhere, continues to live forever!
There are as many a novel writers as there are novels. Their stories may look the same, the plot, the theme, the suspense, the tragedy, the comic side, the works. Most were done in fiction although one cannot dissociate its projections since it came from a reflection of reality than that of imagination unless it is exaggerated to drive a point. But what gets the cake is the time one must consume in the process of writing. Not so much on the style or the technical side like grammar and syntax, but in the conception of the story. There is also the element of time to be used, a lot of time as a matter of fact, for contemplation.
A textbook writer once said that one cannot call himself a real writer unless he has written a novel. And yes, true enough, a novel writer must crack his brains out to fill up a minimum of 200 pages of pure thought unlike technical books which could be prepared through hodge podge of lifting ideas from several references. In writing novels, it is more of characterization than compilation.
I realized this when I began to embark in writing one. It was more fun than I realized it. While I was for a while overwhelmed by the style of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, winner of the Nobel Prize for literature; impressed by the works of Paulo Coehlio, John Griham, Umberto Eco and Mario Puzo, not to mention the classics by Homer, Miguel de Cervantez and Shakespeare, I went through the rigors of writing for writing sake. And after a period of hibernation, came up with a personal obra. It may not rank in the same league as the masters but who cares, in the library, my novel will be arranged as one of them.
I took a cue also from movies, where novels were usually applied. In a recent film pageantry, the silver screen featured “Bonifacio” among others. It was hyped as a blockbuster with veteran thespian Robin Padilla as the main star. At the ceremonies, it even cornered a lot of awards, from best picture to best directorial consideration. Nonetheless, it flopped at the tills. Movie goers are not fetish on history even if the story has an intelligent side. They would rather go for the bad, usually, the zany side. It was the Vice Ganda starrer that clobbered the moolah.
In my estimation, if a novel would present something like that, as what Manuel Quezon III tried in his seminal novel “Illustrado”, it may, as it has, suffered marketing setbacks, let alone winning an award as one of the best written novel in his time.
The same can be said in song writing. The song “I got you under my skin” took 30 years before it becomes a number one hit in the billboard. Or the “Jungle Book” by Rudyard Kipling which took almost two generations before it became a rave.
Guided by this, I prepared myself for a longer ride. I prepared a story not based on history and its heroes, but based on an untold incident with anti-heroes as its moving characters. Not the kind of Bonifacio with Robin Padilla, or Rizal with Ceasar Montano, good movies but seldom viewed, but the kind of Nardong Putik, Waway and Baby Ama bio flick which racked so much. It even made those who played the role. Nardong Putik catapulted Ramon Revilla up until he became a Senator. Waway gave Ceasar Montano a banking name. Baby Ama pushed Rudy Fernandez to the apex of his career in the entertainment world.
The novel I wrote is not only a story of one wayward personality; it is a story of several persons, what the public, even what the judiciary has confirmed as anti social. My story is about all the celebrity prisoners who are, or once, have served time in the national penitentiary. It is a conglomeration of various stories one could imagine as if Asiong Salonga, Ben Tumbling, Jack the Ripper, Mr. Hyde were lumped in one prison cell.
It was an enjoyable ride, an adventure only imagination could provide. My novel is based on the truth of what is obtaining in the National Penitentiary but taken on a whole it becomes fiction. The characters are as real as I can take note of, their persona, their means, their idiosyncrasies. The incident with which they were made a participant of is likewise as real as the sun. Except for the fact that all of them, never even for once, blended into something factual as what I have intended them to be. That is where fiction came in.
In my novel, people come alive even their true calling and the events around them. I never hid them with different names. It is only in the context that their presence is something imagined and unreal. And that what makes my novel some kind of a novelty compared with the rest. Some would even ascribe it as libellous and outrageous.
If my novel becomes controversial, it is only the courts of law that could determine if it is worth the circulation.
“There are places I remember
All my life though some have changed
Some forever not for better
Some have gone and some remain
All these places have their moments
With lovers and friends, I still can recall
Some are dead and some are living
In my life I’ve loved them all.”
A person is remembered not for what he has done to himself or to his life as a whole, he is remembered for what he has accomplished.
And for the next 50 years, thereupon a full generation, a person’s name can still be recalled haltingly, his life can still be reckoned as footnote, although like an impression of his foot on the sand, in time it would be washed away by the coastal waters. Until such time, he would be taken aside, completely ignored and forgotten as if he never lived at all.
I was trying my best to check who the grandfather of my father was. I was also trying to check every relative to determine who the grandparents of my mother were. I would always face a blank wall. I wanted to know where I came from, from where my genes emanated. Just a way by which to preserve mine and supply my successors where we originated. In my research, I found one accomplishment by my greatgrandfather, Benedicto Centeno, the grandfather of my mother. It was a monument he sculpted at the Plaza of Vigan, Ilocos Sur that reminded of his existence. After all, he was the tutor of a studious kid who would become the President of the Philippines. And yes, my grandfather , father side, Eufemio Pili Tesoro. His name remained in SCRA as a convicted felon challenging the authority of then Director of Prisons, in re GR No. L-46437 dated October 10, 1934. That is the farthest I could reach. Their pompous and for a while an embarrassing life may have been preserved through records or in the memory of their immediate family but also for those down in the generation that followed, they were no longer a part and parcel of reminiscence.
How fleeting time is. One day, a person is born, nurtured, schooled and would become an active part of the world. And after a while, he is gone and what is left are titbits of incidents and some anecdotes on how he lived. It is fleeting and flickering. The Kings of olden times while yielding considerable power and fame would also be forgotten after a turn of a generation. Alfred Nobel was the inventor of dynamite and now reduced to a medal. At least his name is still reckoned but no longer as significant as when he was during his prime. Well, no one else actually had a chance to be remembered until the digital age has arrived.
We are a fortunate generation because we are now concerned with knowledge and have now the capacity to preserve it for a number of generations more.
It is on this note that I submit my take on my immediate family, addressed to cyberspace if only to have a record of them somewhere within reach.
Hence, the following:
For a while, my loved ones passed away one after another. And their memory lingers on not on what they have accumulated, not on how they understood life, not on how they tread the earth, not even on how they loved but on the passion they gave on something significant for them. These apply also to all.
My father (who passed away at the age of 86) is simply remembered for saving the lives of truckloads of his town mates during the Japanese time.
My mother, 59 years old, is simply remembered for resigning from a high paying job if only to take care and nurture her growing children.
My sister, 57 years old, is simply remembered for her sacrifices to make technical vocation training a major educational course in all colleges and universities in the world.
My wife Fely, 65, is simply remembered for her staunch loyalty to government service, never allowing any day of absence just to serve public service even to the detriment of her parental duties or for health consideration.
My uncle Gred, 77 years old, is simply remembered for his tenacious loyalty to his friends.
My uncle Ben, 68 years old, is simply remembered as a one of country’s foremost musician who excelled in music through his rhythm guitar.
My best friend Romy, 68 years old, is simply remembered for surrendering himself in the altar of friendship.
My loyal garderner, Jojo Viray, 57 years old, who stayed in my garden night and day, volunteered his labor, until he was felled by a bullet from an unknown assailant.
My loyal mechanic Junboy, 63, who is simply remembered for maintaining my first car (and still is running after 40 years).
My school mate and best friend Sonny Miranda, 58 years old, is simply remembered as a family man who wanted to celebrate his birthday, no matter what, beside his family.
They may have gone to the other side, their deed may not be earth shaking but it was an accomplishment which they have dedicated their lives no matter how historical or trivial it may be.
HIS MUSIC LIVES ON.
He loved playing the guitar even as a toddler. It was the first real toy he got from his father when he was five years old. And it was a love affair that would take him to several places, several stages, several films in a span of almost six decades. He was the country’s best guitarist for a long time. He was the counterpart of the most precocious musicians that ever graced the planet and he was almost a perfect match for their skill. For a time, he occupied the top of the music world as one of the most sought after instrumentalists in the country.
He is Benjamin Tesoro, the youngest brother of my father. Personal equation dictates that I must be partial and patronizing to a fault because of relation. But no. The man has received enough accolades to be recognized and no amount of boot licking can…
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Man is cuddly when he was a baby. Like a cat, the kitten is the cutest thing next to the most expensive kiddy toy. As man grows older, he exudes beauty and proportion. Youth is the foundation of his life. As he matures, he gains wisdom and becomes accomplished in whatever it is that he would lay his hands on.
And then, he reaches the twilight years, assuming that he survived the treacherous side of the elements. What happens next is almost a foregone conclusion. He becomes sedate, demure and sensitive to a fault. He is no longer part of the unfolding world. Technology would skip his attention. He would rather breath the air of retrospection rather preoccupy himself with whatever the future holds for him. It is no longer his concern because science has leapt exceeding more than his imagination.
In his estimation, he has already seen and tasted everything. He has been in one place too many. He has known the world and everything around him. He knows that anytime he will no longer stay around to inspire life but would become a food for the multitude of microbes, another form of life in need of sustenance. While he imagines life hereafter, he is in reality a menu waiting to be served in life here-and-now.
He would just content himself with whatever that amuses his state of mind. After all, the brain has limited lifespan than his physique. He may exude strength but his thoughts are no longer consistent. He would better be in the sideline waiting for nature to claim him later.
Only memories and sentiments animate those around him. In a few years, he would be forgotten. Those who are still on the lips of the people would undergo a series of review. Jose Rizal during his prime was a symbol of nationalism. A few years after his death, he would become a popular brand of matchstick! Add a few more years, his name would not only suffer in debate but his reputation would also be questioned. For once Rizal’s monument was a sacred spot in his country’s devotion. Now, it is photobombed like an ordinary selfie. Such is life after death.
William Shakespeare was the best writer known and quoted seriously in every scholarly piece of literature. He was considered one of the gods in the intellectual world. Well for a while though. After a few years from his demise, his reputation was in tatters, rumoured as copycat and worst, suspected as a sexually deranged person. Such is what death has done to life.
The only pristine recollections which would defy contrast and impurity on the beloved person who crossed over are those musings held dear by his family, by his spouse, by his children, by his children’s children. And then it stops until oblivion creeps in. Nothing survives in perpetuity unless the name is fixed in power or in martyrdom. And just the same, in a few generations ahead, it fades away and blown in the wind of consciousness.
Life goes on and death follows. Or, it may be rearranged as death goes on and life follows. Whichever, there is no end and everything begins somewhere. For sure, not even science knows which came first if it is day or night. What is certain however is that, there is night and day.