Monday, November 5, 2012

I cannot vote...

I cannot vote for a mentality that considers me less than important because I am a woman. I cannot vote for a mentality that says I was raped because I somehow provoked it because I’m a woman. I cannot vote for a mentality that says if I were “legitimately raped” – (as opposed to legally raped?) and a pregnancy ensued, I wouldn’t be allowed to abort.

I cannot vote for a mentality that dictates who I should love. I deserve to love whoever my heart choses to love even if my heart beats to another rhythm.
I will not support a mentality that says my autistic brother is included in the 47% who don’t pay taxes and therefore shouldn’t be encouraged. Money is not the standard by which life should be lead, money comes and goes, but dignity and respect is priceless.

God doesn’t participate in politics. Politics is a human affect. Look to Iran where the Ayatollahs have been raised to governing status. No faith is perfected, we are all human. That is why there is secular and faith. The United States was formed on a basis of separation of Church and State.

Politicians are what they are because they are politicians. I know they all lie, they make promises they will break, they will tell me what I want to hear. But when a candidate supports views that are a completely anathema to my life, I cannot vote for them. And it is with my conscience I am compelled to post this because I have to stand up for something I believe in.

I know God loves me for he gave me a family who has brought me challenges as well as joy, but above all, they give me love and through their love, I feel the love of God shine. For I believe in love, for the family and friends who love me unconditionally and whose love I try to return unconditionally. I cannot vote for a mentality of exclusion and derision. I am not subhuman and I will not be treated as one.

God bless us all.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Midnight Thoughts

There is something about sitting in the dark, remorseless from lack of sleep that makes every silly pain sharpened. As if our daily machinations dull our sensitivities to the inevitable gravitas that weighs upon each of us. Each day is a weight of experience that we carry, each moment of life another ounce of wisdom, thus the eventual slowness of our movements, the bending of our backs as if we drag ourselves to decrepitude.

It is to these morbid thoughts that I find myself on this dark and dreary night. Left alone to my thoughts, I lean to towards angst. I feel a keenness of emptiness, bereft of purpose other than to find a good night’s rest, I lack greater ambition for the moment.

Instead, I find myself, nay; I find my soul, uttering a soft keening and a susurration of surrender to admit that some things are forever lost to me. My youth, my vigor, my mind will eventually melt to time. Yet, as my conscience seems to have resigned its hopes for some mad last affair, my heart still seems to natter on believing that love is never lost, simply misplaced and will one day be found again.

I do wish my heart would shut up and let me sleep. Because that constant war between my heart’s hopes and my mind’s reality, leaves me torn, like pages from a journal full of lies.

Melodrama is the greatest injury this night when my only wish is to sleep. 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Fall Unrequited

Autumn or Fall, for some people is the most glorious of all the four seasons. I too adore the manifest colors of the season but for me it seems so indelibly marked with melancholy. For years I always thought I didn’t like Fall because it meant school was starting again. I was an honors student and on the Dean’s list for many years, yet I detested school.

I think what I really hated was the discipline of having to wake at a specific time during Mondays through Fridays, when I would much rather lie in bed daydreaming.  Then as the year marched on, the days would get darker, longer and colder. I really don’t think that there’s anything wrong with hibernating. The bears have got it right.

But as the years went by and I left school, gradually, there was no need to detest Fall for the forced discipline, instead I’m motivated by the primal instinct of self-preservation. I go to work to feed, clothe and house myself. There is no season(nor reason for that matter) for work. It is 52 weeks of the year and if you’re lucky, sometimes they tell you to stay home.

So why the melancholy at Fall? Why the incipient sadness? Is it because the eagerness of Spring has passed and turned sullen? Is it because the promise of Summer’s sultry nights went unfulfilled? Is it because as the year fades to its end, does Fall simply become the realization that all the sunshine of Spring and Summer were wasted on hopes and aspirations unrequited?

Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Case of the Missing Companion

After my last post my last entry, tired and distraught, I fell back to sleep, just exhausted. Again, sleep came like a heavy curtain call.

Whereas my last dream in the Savoy was bright and airy, taking place mostly in the common area, this dream is dark, taking place mostly in my room and in the hallway.

I am trying to check out but something is wrong. It seems that I’m being investigated. Detectives are in my room rummaging through my things, fingerprinting everything. The dream starts in medias res.

They are investigating the disappearance of my companion. Except my deep dark secret is that there is no companion, I have been splurging on room service, eating enough for two people that the staff has assumed there are two people staying in the room. Only now when I’m trying to check out, they are suspicious because I keep telling them there is no other person but they think that I’ve killed him.

I just woke up thinking; I could eat enough food to placate two people.

I’m so grateful even my subconscious mind has a sense of humor.

Flowers, Poison and Good-Bye

It was a day of sunshine and the smell of fresh cut flowers.

I knew about the sunshine, because the weatherman had forecasted it. But I wasn’t expecting the strong smell of fresh cut flowers when I walked into the room. I asked brightly whose shampoo it was and the only replies I had were confused looks. Oddly, it was only when I mentioned it that the scent became apparent to everyone else. When I was asked, I joked, recalling a moment when I had entered my car only to smell strong and expensive perfume pervaded the space inside. I don’t wear perfume, my asthma doesn’t like it. I joked then; my car is cheating on me with a beautiful woman. I told the story and added, “Perhaps it’s the ghost of the woman who comes into my bed to cuddle.” Half-joking because my tone was casual, but when it does happen, I often react violently, jolting out of my sleep.

When everyone left and went home, I took my time to settle myself into sleep. Sleep, unlike most nights, came swiftly and came over me like a thick blanket in a cold night; welcome and I surrendered. But it wasn’t an easy night. Something disturbed my sleep, I dreamt I was awake but couldn’t move, while an insistent voice kept telling me to “…move…wake up…you’re poisoned ... if you don’t move you’ll die…”

But try as I could, movement was hard. But eventually I found myself opening my eyes with my breath fast and labored my heart pounding in panic in my ears. After a moment, I was finally able to move.

It’s a physiological condition. Have you ever seen a child sleep? They thrash, their arms wave, they kick, the roam around in bed, as if they are reenacting their activities in their dreams. As we get older, our brain sends out signals to our adult bodies to stop the thrashing. Supposedly when we’re in deep REM sleep, our bodies our stilled as our minds go through the various gyrations of our adult dreams. Then as we return from dreamland, the brain sends out another signal to allow the body to move. Night terrors is the body not quite catching up with the mind to move as quick, thus the sleep paralysis.

I think it’s because the dreams become more complicated, inventive and reactive. Our adult minds culling through our experiences of the day, dealing with the threats of our worries and the stress of the things we can’t control. I know if I were to act out my dreams, I’d be found on a roof preparing to fly.

So the first dream, whispering of poison and death, resulting in sleep paralysis wasn’t something new. When I woke, I was flat on my back, a position I often find myself in when I do wake from my worst night terrors. Again, it’s a common occurrence for those who’ve suffered from night terrors. It took a while, but I finally shifted to my normal side sleeping and again, sleep took me like a knock on my head, quickly rendering me unconscious.

The second night terror was a sound of crashing, something falling, or being dropped, something heavy. The sound reverberated through my brain and I rushed to consciousness -- fast, the paralysis a lighter feeling. I bolted up in bed when I heard the sound of a moan, as if someone had fallen and hurt themselves.

I stayed awake for another 3hours, fretting what the dreams meant, and the auditory hallucinations that lasted as I was fully awake and checking in with the denizens of the net. Even the stream sleeps.

It was 2am, but it’s Spring forward time so my electronic devices which are automatically updated for Daylight savings times, registered 3am. Then I mused, was I somehow stuck in some weird time shift? For I definitely felt lost in that lost hour.

Eventually, as the clock inched to 6am, I returned to bed, a prayer in my heart, that went unanswered.
It wasn’t a dream of dark terror, it was far more insidious.

I was in London for business and she was unexpectedly there too, in the same hotel, the Savoy. The first time I see her, I was in the lobby getting ready to leave for morning meetings when as I stepped out into the side walk, she was stepping out of her limousine. We greeted each other in surprised, but delighted shock. She smiled her radiant smile and made small talk to catch up during the week since we both were staying at the same place.

But during the week, I only saw glimpses of her as she raced from one place to another. Then there was the time we were standing next to each other, she was decked in impeccable pink and pearls. And she turned her head so as not to meet my eyes. Surely, this wasn’t happening, I thought. So I called her name, she turned her head and smiled a quick but insincere glance and raced off again. My heart shrugged. I often glimpsed her through glass doors, as if I were peaking inside from outside.

The dream felt like a week where I was slowly running out of clothing, my pants ripped at one point, I begged and borrowed another pair, only to find I had holes in the knees of those borrowed khakis. She was dressed fashionably and well-tailored in expensive woven textiles. I was dressed in tatters. 

At several points, I would see her at tables, in vibrant conversations with others and I simply walked on, unwilling to interrupt her enjoyment. At one point, she was at a table alone, she looked up, nodded in acknowledgement and looked away, dismissing me. 

There was a scene where I was sitting in a small bistro table, talking to some other people. I caught her out of the corner of my eye being led to the table behind me, she was with someone else. I was in the middle of a conversation as well. But suddenly I heard her voice; she was leaning across her table, telling me to please keep the volume of my conversation down to a low roar. I looked through her face for any hint of humor and found none.

The last thing from my dream was my exiting the hotel, through the glass revolving door, I see her crammed into a crowded Bentley. It was a sunny bright day, I caught a glimpse of blue sky as I focused on her. She had the window seat, the window open, as the car pulled away, she turned her head and saw me, shrugged and smiled as she was driven away.

The message unavoidable, there was no room for me.

I awoke with a broken heart and tears. Sometimes a dream is just a dream, but it still hurts the same.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A Dream Vividly Remembered

I set up this blog to talk about dreams half-remembered. I have great dreams that sometimes take me away to fantastical places with memorable faces. When I awake, I feel as I’ve been somewhere else on vacation.

Several dreams pop into my head as I wrote the abovementioned paragraph, all richly rendered in brilliant colors and sensations. I’ve awakened to songs in my head, promises to myself to return and consternation that my life isn’t like that now. I joke that I’m glimpsing an alternate universe. Some dreams really make me question reality.

Last night I had a very powerful dream, it wasn’t colored in rich vibrant hues; it was actually hued in greys and browns as if viewed at twilight. I woke up in the middle of the night with my mind reeling trying to memorize as much as I could.

I’m in a low ceiling room, but it’s not a basement because there are full windows. But now that I think about it, very much like a Japanese house, low ceilings and a staircase in the middle of the floor plan. It’s not extremely dark, which usually isn’t a good sign and there are several people in the room. I would call the lighting murky.

I am passing by the staircase when I see two women coming down, a younger woman, 40s blonde, short hair, holding the hand of an older woman guiding her down the stairs. The older woman is brought directly to me.

The older woman is in an old fashioned floral patterned dress, she seems very glad to meet me. She is 5’8”-5’9”, on the thin side, faint reddish hair. Now, here’s the odd part. In the dream I instinctively know that her father died when she was 3yrs old and her mother, Alma, raised her alone.

She hugs me fiercely and we fall to sitting on a step on the staircase. We rock as we hug because she thinks I’m her granddaughter and she is very sorry to have had to leave me too soon. I assure her that things happen for a reason and it’s all right. She is relieved and I lead her back up the stairs, we reach the first landing where I stop and she continues upward.

The staircase is very obvious, as I wake up I’m stunned by the level of detail in my dream. Oddly, I never got her name; she was just “Grandma”. I didn’t call my grandmothers grandma, I called them Lola as befitting my Filipino heritage.

I only post this because maybe somewhere, someone is missing their grandma and it’s why she ‘came down’ and she detoured into my dream. This is the first dream where I remember the smells, intimate and close as if the person was truly in my arms.

Whoever she is, I think she’s now in peace and hopefully her granddaughter knows it.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

10 Basic Rules of Office Etiquette

1) Put your phone on vibrate: It’s annoying to everyone around you when it goes off. You might think your ringtone is cute, but I really don’t want to hear something that sounds like music from a porno.

2) Don’t talk with your mouth open: We all eat at our desk at one point or another, give yourself a break and don’t pick up the phone or talk to anyone until you’ve finished eating. I don’t like getting food in my face.

3) If you see me eating at my desk, please don’t interrupt. Please don’t make me talk with food in my mouth. I don’t want you getting food in your face.

4) Just because the walls are elbow-high, it doesn’t mean you lean on it and talk to me. We are not neighbors that stand around and chat, I do have a job.

5) If you have time to stand around and chat with me and I keep my head turned to my PC screen and continue to type, my ‘uh huh’ means I didn’t hear you nor do I care. Move along.

6) When you walk up behind someone’s chair, make noise, because if you startle me, I will push away from my desk and ram my chair into your shins and that is totally your fault.

7) We all have PCs, we all have our own emails, unless your fingers are broken, even if you are my boss, type your own emails.

8) Don’t ever ask someone to Google something for you, see #7.

9) Don’t pick your nose at your desk, if I see that, I will never ever visit your area nor touch your desk, you might find a very large jar of antibacterial gel on your desk one day or smeared all over your desk and chair.

10) Don’t make up nicknames for other people that annoy them. Don’t continue using it even when no one else laughs except you. Then you look like a jackass. 

Monday, January 30, 2012

The Rose vs. The Sunflower

With St. Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I’ve noticed an increase of angst. Valentine’s Day is a brilliant marketing idea that took a little legend and turned it into a celebration of guilt. It should really be called “I Listened To The Hype And Got Shamed Into Buying You a Bunch of Roses Day”. Suddenly, people run around making all kinds of elaborate displays of affection for their beloved. It always struck me as silly because if you have someone in your life you love, shouldn’t every day be an opportunity to shower them with affection? Why would you need a day marked on a calendar?

Then there is the usual symbol for love and Valentine’s Day, the red rose.

“My love is like a red red rose” – Robert Burns

But I think about it and find that if you really look at a rose, it’s true charm and attraction is its incipient symbol for expectation. Have you ever seen a rose when it is just a green polyp on the end of a bush? It has a lovely shape, then slowly the green leaf starts to unfurl and the flower petals are unveiled. It is a study of contrasts; the green against the red. The petal has a similarity to pursed lips. Perhaps that’s why it is such a symbol for romantic love.
Then as it blossoms, the petals unfurl but there is a point when it becomes past its bloom. The petals fall like tears and the ground looks like it’s covered with broken hearts. There is nothing as sad as a dead rose, its head bent, broken and bald.

I like to think as love more in keeping with a sunflower. A sunflower grows tall and proud, I’ve seen them as tall as 7 feet, their proud faces straining at the sky as if they could, they would fly up and disappear into the sun.

Which leads me to this poem by Thomas Moore:

Believe me, if all those endearing young charms,
Which I gaze on so fondly today,
Were to change by tomorrow and fleet in my arms,
Like fairy wings fading away
Thou wouldst still be adored, as this moment thou art,
Let thy loveliness fade as it will;
And around the dear ruin each wish of my heart
Would entwine itself fervently still.
It is not while beauty and youth are thine own,
And thy cheeks unprofaned by a tear,
That the fervor and faith of a soul can be known,
To which time will but make thee more dear.
No, the heart that has truly loved never forgets,
But as truly loves on to the close:
As the sunflower turns on her god when he sets
The same look which she turned when he rose.

“As the sunflower turns on her god when he sets…” That’s a great line, because whosoever captures my heart, will capture it completely. It strains to fly, as love should fly. When it dies, its petals whither, the head drops forlornly, but it still stands. Yes, I’ve simplified it, but love shouldn’t be complicated. Love should be easy and simple. 

Sunday, January 29, 2012


It’s been a very lazy weekend for me, so I surfed the channels and found myself caught up in the movie “The Day The Earth Stood Still” with Keanu Reeves and Jennifer Connelly. The basic plot is that an alien, (Reeves) lands on Earth, to make the final determination of whether he will destroy the human species.

If the Earth dies, you die. If you die, the Earth survives. There are only a handful of planets in the cosmos that are capable of supporting complex life...” - Klaatu

Seeing that the immediate reaction to his arrival brings a very strong military response, the world panics and looting begins, he decides it’s time to pull the plug. The hostilities toward the unknown is mirrored in the response of Jacob Benson(Jaden Smith), Jennifer Connelly’s son. The boy wants to just kill the aliens. But the decision is changed when Klaatu sees the other side of humans. Our ability to empathize and the possibility of changing our self-destructive behavior, convinces Klaatu to stop the destruction to the species.

“There's another side to you. I feel it now.” - Klaatu

Then I watched the movie “The Help”. This isn’t my review of these two movies; it’s simply my observations of what each movie says about us.

“The Help” takes place during the turbulent 60s in Mississippi when, segregation was institutionalized and ingrained. Threaded through the personal stories of the characters are historical references to the civil rights movement. At one point a character says to the lead to hurry up and write her story before the whole civil rights movement blows over. They refer to Martin Luther King’s call to march on Washington and the killing of Medgar Evers.

The movie was brilliant as was the story it told. It was not preachy; it had its funny and profound moments. It was a peek into a world that has hopefully disappeared forever.

As I watched the end credits of “The Day the Earth Stood Still”, a simplified hope that man can change its self-destructive ways, I looked at it with a personal meaning. I wondered if I could change my own self-destructive behavior. Will it need a life-threatening situation before I do the right things or will I just devolve into a meaningless slug? Or could I even change?

Then as I watched the end credits of “The Help” it dawned on me that the 60s really wasn’t that long ago, given the grand scheme of things. So if an entire nation can change, I can change myself to be the person I want to be, the person I know I can be and be proud of myself.