The Hunchback of Rural High #MondayMemoirs #KwentongUPRural

I was never popular in high school. If I ever was, that could be because I was considered weird, which never offended me. I welcomed being voted as Weirdest Girl in Class two years in a row. For me, that meant I was not one to conform just to be called cool. Besides, when you’re a writer, people just tag you as weird. Hollywood fed us that idea.

Most probably, though, if I ever was popular, it was because I was the Hunchback of Rural High. I was the short girl looking like Quasimodo.

I didn’t use to be like that. I did not have a humped back prior to high school. I was a shy kid in grade school who only started coming out of her shell in fourth grade. By sixth grade, I was jumping from tables, singing the oldie La Bamba shamelessly…Then a teacher sent me back into my shell, accusing me in front of the other kids because she supposedly didn’t like something I said about her favorite student.

I was dumbfounded and confused. I did not even understand what she meant until days later! Worse was, she thought wrong as I was not referring to him. Unfortunately, my self-esteem already suffered because of it. Why a teacher should even get offended by a student practicing the right to choose who to like or not is beyond me. By the time I reached high school, I was starting to develop the humped back.

Well, that was my backstory, no pun intended. High school started and soon, boys from my batch would sing the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT) theme song whenever I passed by. But I never hid or ran away; I just passed by poker-faced. I knew they’d get tired of it one day. Thankfully, the bullying didn’t go further than that. But of course, I resented what they did; I had feelings, too. Some years ago, an old teacher reminded me of the time I had the guts to tell him to tell those boys, whom he was friends with, to get off my back (again, no pun intended).

The funny thing was, to be honest, I resented them because I thought they were referring to the “mutant” part, which, for me, translated to “uber-ugly girl”.  It was months after that I realized they didn’t exactly mean it that way. They meant something else. Surprisingly, that lifted my self-esteem a bit. I was glad they were referring to something else that I could do something about.

So, I did do something about it. I started trying to fix my Quasimodo posture. If you think it was easy, it wasn’t.

It took a lot of effort and self-awareness to prevent the slumping whenever I walked. I could actually feel the physical pressure every time I tried to keep my back straight. If you were near me enough, you’d probably hear me groaning a bit. It worked, though. I may not walk straight as a model, but I got my intended result. I didn’t know the reason for the humped back until Home Economics in the fourth year: a book explained that slumping was a sign of insecurity. I thought, Well, that figures.

The teasing stopped. A boy in senior year attempted to revive it by singing the TMNT song as I walked nearer. It was the classic case of someone bullying somebody else to compensate for his own low self-esteem. Instead of feeling hurt or getting mad, I was amused and tempted to say, “What, you’re still not over that?“ He never tried again.

 

My whole high school life was like everyone else’s. I had to struggle with different issues (body changes, grades, crushes, friendships, lack of confidence). However, if there’s one thing that made me different, it was this early experience.  It hurt emotionally and physically, but that was part of what made me, me.

I don’t resent those boys anymore. I forgave them a long time ago. I’m thankful they somehow taught me to stand up straight. Take it figuratively, take it literally, it’s up to you. Besides, I kind of liked the ninja turtles 😊

 

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Usually, I don’t follow the Philippine time when I post stuff. But I wanted this posted already before I forget or lose interest again. While it’s still Sunday in most readers’ part of the world, it’s already Monday here, so this counts as a #MondayMemoirs post.

I’ve already mentioned about my turtle “background” before, but this is a bit more revealing and personal. I wrote about it because our high school reunion is coming and I’ve been asked to write my HS experience for our unique souvenir programme. I was able to submit three write-ups (Rattling Cages and two trivia pieces). Unfortunately, this one did not meet the deadline. I was supposed to share this after the reunion, but since it’s not going to be part of the programme anyway, I went ahead and shared it. (By the way, my school was the U.P. Rural High School, ergo, the use of the “Rural” word.)

I do have a DISCLAIMER: I don’t, in anyway, hate my old school. This is not to speak ill of it. I shared this because (1) my growth was important to me, and (2) to show that things like this happen anywhere. Ultimately, it is up to us to choose which life lessons we’re going to keep and how we will use them to our advantage.

Any comments or thoughts? I won’t mind. Let me know below! Or maybe share your own experiences? 😉

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The End Justifies the Journey

It is easy to be depressed. It is easy to be mad. It is easy to just meet fire with fire. But the harder thing to do is to just sit down and let the fire burn till it dies…Today, I am reminded that you cannot teach others new tricks when they don’t want to learn using their hearts. I am not perfect, but I know I try to be the kind of person I have to be, not just the kind of person I want to be.

The End Justifies the Journey

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How to Spell the Ancient Filipino Way #atozchallenge2017

The written language is most important in writing.Without it, we’d all be like cavemen drawing stories, probably even opinions, on walls, tree trunks, leaves…I imagine there would be much more confusion in this already-confused world.

Of course, there would be the spoken  language, probably mostly grunts coupled with hand gestures. We’d probably be fighting over and over due to sound and gesture misinterpretations. I mean, cave paintings are now art, but isn’t art subject to various interpretations? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, in a manner of speaking.

So, without the written language, we’d be so far from the civilized world of today…Well, almost civilized. (Some people do seem to even openly and unabashedly show or express their Neanderthal tendencies.)

A Sense of History and Identity

An uncivilized society with no history, that’s exactly how the country’s Spanish conquerors made the natives, our land’s indigenous people and my ancestors, believe they had. After all, we all used to be made up of tribes that practiced pagan beliefs. For around 400 years, they called us ‘indios’, their colonial and discriminatory racial term for us. The conquistadors made us believe our forefathers were illiterate prior to their arrival. The better to reign over us, right?

“The colonial masters required the native Filipinos to swear allegiance to the Spanish monarch, where before they only had village chieftains called ‘datus;’ to worship a new God, where before they worshipped a whole pantheon of supernatural deities and divinities; to speak a new language, where before they had (and still have) a Babel of tongues; and to alter their work habits, where before they worked within the framework of a subsistence economy.” (Encyclopedia of Southeast Asia: Philippines)

Illiterate with no social identity, though? That was the biggest lie Spain gave us. Before they came barging in, we already had our own ancient writing system, the baybayin, also and more popularly known as alibata.

The Baybayin/Alibata

What is baybayin?

“Baybayin is a pre-Spanish Philippine writing system. It is a member of the Brahmic family and is recorded as being in use in the 16th century. It continued to be used during the Spanish colonization of the Philippines up until the late 19th Century.” (Mandirigma.org)

Pre-Spanish era, we were not yet Filipinos. I say this for the simple reason that Filipinas–the Philippines–was named after Spain’s ruler Haring (King) Felipe once they conquered us. The whole truth was, we were an already-learned people with our own history, as proven by our writing.

“History is impossible without the written word as one would lack context in which to interpret physical evidence from the ancient past. Writing records the lives of a people and so is the first necessary step in the written history of a culture or civilization.” (Ancient.eu, on Writing)

This is our ancient writing system, the Baybayin. Here you see when to make the characters sound with an “e/i” or an “o/u”, all depend on where you put the marks or dots. The cross has a different purpose and was not part of the original system

The Baybayin Advocacy

Back in 2008, when I used to simply call it ‘alibata’, I wrote about it in my old and now defunct first official blog. I said (with some edits here),

Alibata is slowly being re-introduced to Filipinos. A decade or so ago, some began sporting alibata characters, the Philippines’ ancient alphabet, especially as tattoos. Most popular of these is the ‘pa’ character to represent the letter P, to symbolize being ‘Pinoy’, slang word for ‘Filipino’ or ‘Pilipino’. Once in a while, I encounter people wearing shirts bearing some of the characters. In the ’90s, GMA (Channel) 7 came up with the action show titled Pintados. In our ancient times, ‘pintados’ were the tribesmen-warriors called so because they had their bodies painted all over. No, tattooed all over. Anyway, this show took a lot of liberty using alibata characters, but without educating the audience on what they meant…

I think I’ll call myself an Alibata advocate. I’ve been trying to practice it this year and I plan to use it in other things…(I do follow what I’ll call ‘Neo-Alibata‘, though. Old and ‘new’ must meet somewhere.)

It was used in many parts of the country back then, especially in Visayas and Mindanao, so it’s not necessarily Tagalog, our most widely used dialect originating from Luzon. The Spaniards came and forced people to become Christians and the ancient letters began disappearing. The style I’m using isn’t exactly the original. I’m following some changes especially when I’m not writing in Filipino. There are letters in the English alphabet that we don’t have.”

The “Ka” character on a Philippine flag

What I meant by “the style I’m using” was that I was/is following the altered version created by a Spaniard that adds the cross sign to indicate that a character is to be read as a simple consonant–“pa” is simply read as “p”.  Meanwhile, our writing system did not have any R-sound so one of the usual things done, which I follow, was/is to use the “da” or the “la” character instead. I am very partial to the second one because I find it prettier, to be honest. The Mandirigma Research Organization‘s site should be able to tell you much more, so I recommend that you refer to it.

Another popular character, the “Ka”, is another fave of mine. It was used in one of the flags of the Philippine Revolution, by the revolutionary group called Katipunan. Now I know what that image on the flag symbolized.

Check out how I did my name (Jennifer Federizo Enriquez) and my alias (Li’l Dove Feather) respectively using a generator I just found.

Nice, eh? When I wrote the post mentioned above, I actually offered to write readers’ names for them if they requested it in the comments. It was a total hit, I tell you. That second image you see on this post is my handwriting in ali–oops–I mean, baybayin! 

“The term Baybay literally means ‘to spell’ in Tagalog…Some have attributed it the name Alibata, but this name is incorrect. (The term “Alibata” was coined by Paul Rodriguez Verzosa after the arrangement of letters of the Arabic alphabet  alif, ba, ta (alibata), “f” having been eliminated for euphony’s sake.” )…no evidence of the baybayin was ever found in that part of the Philippines and it has absolutely no relationship to the Arabic language. Furthermore, no ancient script native to Southeast Asia followed the Arabic arrangement of letters,…its absence from all historical records indicates that it is a totally modern creation.” (Mandirigma.org)

Like I said, I aim to be a baybayin advocate. In fact, in the story I am working on, the alibata/baybayin is mentioned.

“…It was proof that unlike what the Spaniards claimed, Filipinos were not an uncivilized race before they arrived and conquered. It was only what they made everyone believe.

Maya had scoffed at that in a conversation saying, ‘Ha! I was learning my A-Ba-Ka-Da loooooong before I met any of them. My father taught me that and his father taught him, and so on. If I had my way, I’d put learning alibata in the grade school curricula.’ She would, too, knowing her. In fact, her journal notebook was filled with things always written in alibata, one way to keep most people away, ironically.” (MAYA [CHAPTER 2: DEAD AIR, Scene 4])

The point made regarding including the writing system in the school curricula is definitely my opinion. And time may come that I shall write a whole story in our beloved baybayin. I can’t wait for other Filipinos to do the same (although there are those who have been incorporating it in their comic books). After all, according to the Mandirigma site, Baybayin was noted by the Spanish priest Pedro Chirino in 1604 and Antonio de Morga in 1609 to be known by most, and was generally used for personal writings, poetry, etc.”

Our literary world has suffered for centuries and it’s time to bring back pride for what we can do and continue our history!…But for now, you can bet that the writing system will figure more in my story’s chapters to come. We always start somewhere.

Meanwhile, here are samples I personally made:

If you found this blog’s landing page, this surely welcomed you

If memory serves me right, this was my first attempt at doing baybayin. I mixed images and using a mouse with an unsteady hand, I tried to write down my alias, Li’l Dove. Though the “B” didn’t look that right, I think it was okay because the effect I was going for was a “smokey” effect

For my then blog, I made this for fun. The girl was supposed to be me, only with better hair and with earrings (well, only one visible) when I am not the type to often wear them. I spelled out “kopi kat” in baybayin and added a personal logo I created

 

These were just some of the many names I spelled out in baybayin, as requested. I have deleted the others

My own personal logo, in various renditions. It honestly does not strictly follow the writing system’s spelling rules. I’ve just stylized my logo. The above character, yet another one of my favorites, says “G” (meaning me, Gi); the one below says “pi” because no matter what happens, I’m proud to be Pinoy!

 

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I hope you enjoyed that one and learned a thing or two! Come back on Monday for the next A to Z post! Maybe I’ll have something nice again for you again 😉

By the way, all rights reserved to me, J.Gi Federizo, except for images and quotes that are linked to the right sources. I had original sources in 2008 as well, but the links are gone, and Mandirigma.org shares enough and proper information already, so my thanks to the whole research organization.

Also, DISCLAIMER: This post does not aim to spread hate against Spain or any other country. We are not accountable for whatever bad deeds our forebears did during their time.

A is for “Alibata”, otherwise known as “Baybayin”.

This piece serves as my Letter A post for the A to Z Challenge 2017.

The Legend of the Fifth Turtle

Times like this, I think it’s okay for me to reblog a post like this. For you to hopefully understand me a little better; for ME to understand me a little better…

The End Justifies the Journey

Did you know that aside from Michelangelo, Leonardo, Raphael and Donatello, there was a fifth Teen-age Mutant Ninja Turtles member?

This fifth member was a shy little girl in gradeschool. Then high school happened. The fact that she had to make new friends with kids who knew each other since gradeschool, were mostly more outspoken and liberated, were mostly more well-off, seemed like a smart lot, and mostly lived in the same freakin’ town…Well, that was a lot to bear. Hey! She was thirteen! Just starting her teens. Psychologists are right when they say that the teen-age years are times for a lot of confusion and insecurities.

lonely-turtle

She soon again proved psychologists right. A change in her became noticeable. Short kid that she already was, she became shorter and developed a kind of humped back. She didn’t even know. So her parents would say, “Stand straight! You’re slumping again.” She…

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Listening with Your Soul #TuesdayTunes

It’s amazing, isn’t it? You’d think great musicians grew up all normal but with exceptional musical abilities. But in actuality, a lot of them have impairments that could have stopped them from becoming great. Beethoven was deaf and is an excellent example of how anyone can overcome such a grave challenge and, in fact, use it for the better. Boy, did he use it! Eric Clapton, Sting and Bono? Also hearing-impaired.  Andreas Bocelli, Stevie Wonder and Ray Charles? All blind.

It’s like wonderful armless painters who have found a way to use their mouths and feet,  painting their obra maestras. It’s like Stephen Hawking using his genius mind over his physical matters. Or how about Nick Vujicic? No arms, no legs, no problem. He’s become one of the most influential life speakers of today…

Oh, but here,  we go back to music. I thought I’d share this TED Talks session to you (I told you I like TED Talks).

In this soaring demonstration, deaf percussionist Evelyn Glennie illustrates how listening to music involves much more than simply letting sound waves hit your eardrums.

It’s a very enlightening and entertaining talk. I’m pretty sure you’ll like it and her, too. I wish I could actually see this wonderful artist perform!

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Hope you guys enjoyed that and learned a thing or two. If you have similar talks to share, please share. I love listening to stories of triumph like this 🙂

 

Finding Grace in a Grilled Ham & Cheese

I had been waiting since last week to reblog this and I think this is the right time. We all can relate to this. I personally feel that it is the primary caregivers in the family (like I was) and those who can’t go home to be with their ailing loved ones (like my sister was) who feel the regrets the most.

This was what I had to say, though:

“In 2012, I tried to do the best I could for both my ailing parents. Still, I ask to this day if I really did. Maybe it’s really that Angry stage of the grief. There is no deadline or proper schedule for each stage of grief–it could be for months or a year, it could even take a lifetime. It is important that we do acknowledge the anger and learn to forgive the ‘sinner(s)’ (either yourself or others) little by little…”

If you are at that stage right now, don’t be too hard especially on yourself. We must always remember that we are not God and that there are things that our mortal powers cannot any more handle.

 

Thank you to Lori Greer for this.

Lori Greer in Portland

“But when from a long distant past, nothing subsists, after the people are dead, after the things are broken and scattered, still, alone, more fragile, but with more vitality, more unsubstantial, more persistent, more faithful, the smell and taste of things remained poised a long time, like souls, ready to remind us, waiting and hoping for their moment, amid the ruins of all the rest; and bear unfaltering , in the tiny and almost impalpable drop of their essence, the vast structure of recollection.”   excerpt from Remembrance of Things Past by Marcel Proust.

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Moms, we are with you…

It’s also Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month, did you know? I didn’t, until I stumbled upon Ashley Anderson‘s article last Friday.  Now you know what that means to me, so I won’t delve much into it. I do want to express my deep sorrow through her words.

Our experiences were different, but we were on the same boat. And now, we’re learning to swim, maybe in a different way, too, but we’re both surviving in our own ways. The way a lot of mothers who were on the same boat as well are coping with life.

To our fellow moms, I only have to say that we must strive to enjoy life every day, enjoy even the tiniest bit of things. And never, ever lose hope…

Pregnancy & Infant Loss

Awareness Month

October is pregnancy and infant loss awareness month. For those of you who know me, it’s something that is near and  dear to my heart. Not everyone is comfortable with talking about their journey and loss, but I’ve found that with speaking out about pregnancy loss can help with healing, open up conversation and help connect people who have been affected by loss. 1 in 4 women experience pregnancy and infant loss. It’s time we talk about it.

pregnancy-awareness-monthHere is my story:

My husband and I decided quite early on that we wanted children. It was something that was never really discussed seriously, just something that was important to both of us. We decided in early 2012 that we would start trying (a few months before our wedding) because things like that never happen right away. Well, it did. I conceived the first time in early February of that year…

Read full article

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If you need someone to talk to privately, even just to listen, feel free to email me at j.gi.federizo@gmail.com.

I do advise that you first turn to your loved ones because in such trying times, they must be your first line of support. Grief and sorrow can be lessened when you have a strong support system. If it is a depression that is way beyond the powers of your loved ones, consider getting professional help. It is never wrong to ask for help.

Cancer? Schmancer! ~ Fran Drescher #MondayReviews

Cancer? Schmancer!

Cancer Schmancer
By Fran Drescher
260 pages

cancer-schmancer-franCreator, executive producer, writer, director, star. But cancer survivor? Certainly not something Fran Drescher would have wanted on her resumé! Yet in year 2000, while the whole world celebrated surviving the millennium bug, she of TV’s The Nanny fame was in a battle no one would’ve predicted for fit, healthy, lively “Miss Fine.”

In reality, things were far from fine. Her almost twenty-year marriage abruptly ended; her beloved dog Chester would soon be put to sleep; worst of all, she finally confirmed what she had somehow suspected all along. After years and years of consulting doctors who mostly told her she was probably just going through the perimenopausal stage—ouch, her ego!—Doctor #9 told her otherwise. That “otherwise” was uterine cancer, stage 1.

So after her first bestseller Enter Whining, Fran was back writing about her life, love, libido, and cancer that really didn’t need to be in her life, but there it was anyway. Why Cancer Schmancer? Writes Fran: “All I’ve got to say is to he** with cancer! This book’s about schmancer! Laughing at the crazy things life offers when it’s biting you in the a**.”

The book basically revolves around Fran’s two-year, 11-doctor journey as she tries to get second, third, fourth and so on medical opinions regarding her health. She knows something is wrong—the staining between periods and cramping after intercourse would have been tell-tale signs of uterine cancer, but she didn’t fall in the risk groups category—yet always, she gets misdiagnosed until Doctor #8 refers her to #9. Meanwhile, her ordeal is changing her into someone she hardly recognizes. Fran eventually recovers with the support of her family, friends, and two different loves.

Written in a candid manner, Fran talks about her cancer with a mix of reflection and humor. There are anecdotes worth retelling to make one smile and even laugh. However, Fran gives more than a dose of humor. She shares the pains and the sorrows as well including a particularly short but sad story so tragic, it spirals to the end of her marriage with Peter Jacobson, her best friend, childhood sweetheart and Nanny co-producer. After the harrowing experience, they will never be the same again, Fran realizes, as they feed off each other’s neediness and fears that are close to paranoia. She just has to get out of the marriage, for both their sake.

As personal and entertaining as it seems, this book is not for the uptight. Language may sometimes be a little too much for some (the first quote is a preview of that) while certain subjects like sex, which is essential to the author, is taboo. But hey, that’s Fran! Take them all away and it wouldn’t be her. One can only appreciate her honesty.

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Fran with members of the Cancer Schmancer Movement

The book, primarily written to make women more aware of their health and the importance of early diagnosis especially of gynecologic cancers, is now on the bestseller list. In fact, it created enough impact that on June 21, 2007, Fran celebrated her seventh year of being cancer-free and topped it off with the launch of the Cancer Schmancer Movement, an active policy-changing movement serving the same goal.

Time to sound off the alarm! As Fran says, “Once you wake up and smell the coffee, it’s hard to go back to sleep.”

 

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NOTE: This article was published in The Big C magazine (July-September 2008 issue). To see more reviews, please visit my CRITIC’S CORNER….Thank you!

Thank You for the Music #MondayMemoirs

Hello, folks! Hope you’re having a nice Monday. I am just posting this now (if you’re from abroad, time is just right; here, it’s almost midnight). Wanted to make it a scheduled post last weekend, but I wasn’t feeling well. Then I was way too busy at work today. And then, I was planning on posting something else then realized I hadn’t really saved pictures online. The good thing is, I have this!

dzlb-mural-art

THIS was the mural made by me and my “colleagues” when I was still in college and working as a college radio DJ. I have very fond memories of my days as a DJ. Of course, sometimes, there are bad apples with good ones, so needless to say, not all those days were good ones. Cases in point:

A. The others were teasing me to Someone, a fellow DJ whom I wasn’t particularly interested in. They just naturally assumed it because Somebody Else said so. I got to talk to Somebody Else, who never really liked me, and he based the assumption on how I passionately commented on why Someone, who was appearing on national TV as one of the hosts of a show, should have been…I don’t really remember now what it was about, really, but it was clear I preferred Someone to do the hosting. Now, if you knew me for real, you’d know how passionately I gave my opinion at times (still do). But he/they didn’t know me and simply thought, “Oh, how funny, she has a crush on Someone. That would be good for laughs.”

It wasn’t a fun time to be teased, having been the brunt of jokes at certain phases of my life in the past, and especially when I knew they were laughing at me, not with me. I wasn’t blind: I could see the expressions, the exchanged looks. They would imply things (at least, nothing hurtful or insulting) and treat me like a gradeschooler: “Hey, see here, Someone’s here” or “Someone’s playing a nice song, listen.” I never liked being the center of attention so I knew I was blushing like crazy, which just worsened the situation for me. I just got too shy that I did not say anything, after all, no one actually said they were teasing me because of it. I just did not like being made fun of.

Looking back now, I regret not really standing up for myself that time.

B. When I like doing something, I work hard for/on it. That was how I was when they took me in as a DJ. I knew some jocks (not all) were not looking at me and Another Girl as equals before because we started out as newscasters, so we were like “seen” as temporary replacements when they’re busy with their studies or just feeling plain lazy. The agreement was temporarily, Another Girl and I would prepare and give the news while the station tried to see how to give us all shows. We were to sit in at times if a jock couldn’t make it. So there we were, preparing our playlist for the next show we were to sit in for, and the current jocks would just get something from what we prepared because they felt entitled to it, because we “weren’t” really jocks. So then, it would be our problem to fix because we’d have to find something else for our playlist. To be honest, I don’t even know if it was just me and not her. Did I carry a sign on my forehead that said, “Bully me, please, I won’t mind”?

We did prove our worth, though, so some of the not-so-nice jocks became nicer, hopefully sincerely. I’d like to think sincerely. The Program Manager and some staff did take notice of how hard I worked so they decided to make me Student Assistant. Naturally, I became more hardworking, which unfortunately, pissed some people off because they did not want to be reminded how wrong they were treating the equipment or that they should read the news or mention local ads. I guess people hate it when you do your job, huh?

One guy, newer jock from the newer batch, was so rude (and should I mention, friends with some of those who were teasing me before?), he treated me like trash during a show that we were supposed to both host. He wouldn’t let me talk and would cut me off while I spoke, on air, in front of his friends who were there lounging around watching and idolizing him. He would give me the evil eye like saying, “Go away.” I admit, I let my temper get to me — but I felt really insulted. How dare this newbie who just sounded like a lazy *something* on air treat me that way! I think every time I put down my hands on the table, they were not put there as lightly as they should have been. And I never forgot that the mics were very sensitive…

The next day or a few days after, the Program Manager talked to me and said “others” were complaining about my behavior. Again, I knew I should have said something and complained back about the others. But I just said sorry. And I said sorry because I was kind of given an ultimatum — wise up or go out the door. I wised up, that’s what I did.

I wanted to stay despite the fact that they were not treating me nicely and I ended up not treating them nicely as well at times. I stayed because it was the music, the songs I played that soothed my soul.  I stayed for the experience, not for them. Why should I let a bunch of bullies decide what I did with my life? I stayed because it was important to me, it was my therapy that they did not know about and wouldn’t even care about, because that was after my father had his stroke and he never really recovered  properly from it. If they wanted to act like children, then fine. I would be the mature one and despite their protestation in case they get to read this, even if they don’t agree, I was the mature one. I endured their treatment with a smile, joked back, helped.

Finally, I was fine. Not sure if they felt differently about me, but I felt differently about me. I didn’t care much about what they thought anymore. I found my own friends in the group. If anyone didn’t like me, who cared? I cared more for my listeners. I wasn’t playing for them but my listeners who knew how to appreciate me without judging me.

And I was playing for me. I think that’s what mattered most. Music saved me.

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Thank you for reading my #MondayMemoirs. If you have any comments or questions, negative or positive, just lemme know. 🙂

Presenting…FIDO BOB!!! #ThrowbackThursday

I have changed my mind. On Tuesdays, it’s going to be #TuesdayTips, which I will do twice a month, in the same week as #FeatureFriday. #ThrowbackThursday comes out every two weeks as well, along with #AskWednesday. So now that that is out of the way, as some (who am I kidding? I should say “a few”) of you know, I have been taking care of my “new” blog. This post is something I encountered again and I now, finally, feel like really sharing:

Presenting…FIDO BOB!!!

This morning, the driver of the tricycle I boarded was Fido Bob. “Bob” because I can’t remember his name and I think this suits “Fido”, which isn’t just for dogs, but my own version of “Pido”, my own short term for – (*gulp*) – pedophile!!! Yup, he is. Or was, maybe, though I’m not sure. When I was a freshman in high school, on my first days, my mom used to accompany me to the city proper early in the morning so I could board a jeepney bound to Los Banos, a town an hour away, where my school was. Fido Bob worked as a barker, someone who called out to people, urging them to ride the vehicles (in that case, jeepneys). He was short, just about my height, maybe even a bit shorter. He was in his late 20’s already, I gathered…

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Fido Bob

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If you’re heading to the actual post, thank you in advance. I am redirecting you there to avoid redundant pages. Feel free to give a comment here or there, whichever suits you 🙂

*NOTE: Not all pedophiles are child molesters, according to research. I now know better (I wrote the post back in 2004 and the experience happened much earlier,  too).  “Child molesters are defined by their acts; pedophiles are defined by their desires.” I do wonder what would have become of me if he continued…