Missed List (Part 1)

Today, is the birthday of my daughter, and well, there is just something about birthdays that tug at the hearstrings of our lives (fade in Sunrise, Sunset from Fiddler On The Roof, fade out). There. I just acknowledged I am...old. And growing older by the minute (and yes, Jerome, you do not have to rub it in any further).

Anyway, I have been thinking about some of the things I truly miss, or have missed last year.

First, what I missed...

1. Any of the movies of the 2005 Film Festival. Forgive me, Direk Joel and Mother Lily, I can not empathize with your cause. Besides, I have given up on Direk Joel after that over-emote bit at FPJ's necrological service (he did it again on TV in over-emote mode, voice breaking..."ka-ta-ru-ngan!"). I do have this soft spot for Mother Lily partly because I was with Solidbank for seven years - and she was a diehard fan of the bank ("Akin lahat issue tseke Solidbank kasi hindi talbug, swerte.") and mostly because I find her an interesting character.

2. Other movies I missed...Starwars 3 (Revenge of the Sith), Spiderman 2, Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros (mea culpa, I know this is utterly unforgivable). In fact I think it would be easier to just enumerate the three movies I managed to watch last year: Phantom of the Opera, Harry Potter 4, Can This Be Love (yes, I watched that film! Now you can pelt me with tomatoes). All the others, as in ALL others shown on regular moviehouses, I missed.

3. I only went to one and only one play last year: R'meo luvs Dew-liette (jologs adaptation of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet). And I am truly grateful I caught that one. I would have wanted to watch Once On This Island (with my friend May Bayot on it), Aspects of Love, Saint Louis Loves Them Filipinos (with my friend Miguel Castro in the lead), Man from La Mancha, etc., etc., etc.. I missed all the other productions of PETA, Repertory, Tanghalang Pilipino last year. Sigh.

4. I missed attending the graduation of any of my students last year (all three terms!). Okay, to be honest, I have not attended any of the graduation ceremonies at Benilde; and I really should. After all, it should be fulfilling to watch your former students in their black gowns.

5. I missed all my derma appointments last year. Arrgh. People tell me I should really do something about the fat deposits on my face (not that it would bring any more pogi points, ehem, and maybe I do not really care anymore about raking up pogi points anyway). I promise I will try to make an effort to meet my derma appointments this year, I swear.

6. I missed all appointments with my hairdresser last year. Ooops, this is not entirely correct. I did went to one shop to have my hair "relaxed" last April and it was a horrid experience. What I mean is that I intended to have my hair cut last year and I didn't get to do it. So I am still sporting long hair which I intend to shorten before the Chinese New Year.

7. The visit to the Philippines of my dear friend Weng. Well, not entirely my fault, since I did not even know about it at that time.

8. Needless to say, I totally missed my financial targets. Am still indebted to credit card companies, etc. etc. Sigh.

And what I miss.......

1. Friends I haven't seen in ages: Olan (in USA) Arthur (at Louisiana State U), Franz (at Bicol U), Sean (in USA), TJ (also in USA), Aldy (in very very far Makati!!!) and Jojo (in very far Malabon).

2. Performing in a serious play. Honest. The last time I acted onstage was...god, so long ago. I miss my college days (and early career days) when I was very active in theatre.

3. I miss eating greasy, decadent food. Eversince I became hypertensive I have stayed away from fatty, salty and overly sweet stuff and my blood pressure has since become stable at 110/70 so I guess it is worth it. Still, there are times when I have this hankering for...aahhhhhhhh...kaldereta, chicharon, balat ng lechon, sugpo, alimango, chocolates.

4. I miss the rituals associated with smoking. I do not miss the feel of cigarette smoke going through my throat and lungs. What I do miss is the feel of a cigarette on my fingers, the act of lighting it with a lighter or better still - a match!- and then the sight of white billowy smoke emanating from one's mouth. I know this does not make sense to non-smokers, but for one who started smoking at 18, there are certain things that become part of your life's rituals, like drinking coffee in the morning while reading the papers, or reading at the throne, or arranging your pillows in a particular order before turning in for the night.

5. I miss the Binondo environment. For two years, I held office at Binondo and to this day, I have fond memories of the place. There is nothing quite like having lunch at restaurants that you know have been there for 50 years like Sincerity or Savory still serving the dishes that have become comfort food to many. Too bad Smart Panciteria has since moved to Libis - this was the restaurant that was the setting for too many FPJ movies in the 70s. Of course, there is always Carvajal St., which is mentioned in Noli Me Tangere, and to this day still sells the most exotic finds: dragon fruits which they always had even when they were still uncommon, fresh cherries, plums and peaches when in season, and lots and lots of ingredients used in Chinese cooking. And let is not forget that Divisoria is just a few blocks away.

6. I miss the old Malate - the days when we could still drink outside the bars on Adriatico Street without being sideswiped by vehicles or count on our fingers the people walking by - and these were mostly tourists who just wandered by. I miss the old Penguin Cafe where "artists" - both real and pseudo congregated. I miss Khaki Bar with its pebbled floor, Blue Cafe and their chairs which had pictures of famous stars on it - one could sit on the face of Marilyn Monroe or James Dean, and the old Library before it sold out to commercialism. Today, Malate is simply the ghetto for the underground party scene - but the culture is gone.


walang paki said…
oo nga. di ka man lang umatend ng graduation namin ni isang beses!

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