Tuesday, July 25, 2006

i really only meant to step out for a moment. i didn't expect to come back almost a full year later.

many things have changed, but i'll be brief.

i'm older, of course. i moved out of my beautiful childhood home and into an apartment in makati. i cried buckets before i left, but when i actually got here, this little room with the tinier kitchen, my own view of the street, the korean grocer around the corner, and my crate of books beside the bed, it wasn't as bad as i thought it would be. i know how to cook a little now, and have continued baking, yes in the tiny kitchen which i think i'm beginning to love quite fiercely.

i got out of a relationship that was poorly put together. enough said.

i'm slowly dipping my toe back into singing. well, actually, i've been doing more than dipping. and i'm trying to do it now for the right reasons, and hopefully it'll come together nicely. but, yes, i am a mike whore, and i do so admit it with much gusto.

my sister and i won the first Philippine graphic/fiction awards for the comics category. Neil Gaiman said our names aloud and said we were sisters and announced that our little asthmatic fairytale "The Mad, Sad, Incredible, but True Adventures of Hika Girl" was the first prize winner. which is just fantastic, because it just brings everything together so nicely. he came and blew us all away, and we blew him away, and he left us this wonderful opportunity to see what strange stuffs we're made of, and if we'd only made it to the awards, and if i'd been allowed to speak, i'd thank neil, but i'd also thank kitch who lived out that gaiman weekend with me, luis for lending me my very first sandman, to my mother who didn't allow me to give up on hika girl, to all those people in that wall of sound that screamed at neil, , all of us not quite believing he was there in front of us, you could hear it in our voices as we yelled at mr. gaiman, knowing this might never happen again. we were starving and you came.

i don't want to forget that weekend, so i'm glad i wrote all my weepy worship words down in this blog, glad it floated around her in space for a year, glad i could come back to it, and maybe, now, stay a little longer than two days.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

stalker exhaustion...

Still recovering from a very long weekend. My sister and I both sick from all the late nights, early mornings, and emotional upheavals that I just plain didn't expect. I plan a full on, blow by blow account of the gaimanerd (coined by sister) weekend I was so happily a part of. But not now. Now is a time spent for rest, for reflection, and as much calamansi juice (gaiman approved) as my body can handle.

I think I'll settle down and watch my new vcd of the superfriends. Bought it out of pure nostalgia. I remember this was one of my favorite cartoons when I was little. I just loved the idea that all these super heroes got together and formed a group. I loved the scene breaks with those stars going "hooowa!!! hoooowa!!!" higher note on the wa!!!! Or is it dooowah? hoooongwa? basta, it's like a big disco flourish, wa bam and pang!!!

top five animation I want to see again:
1. Flight of dragons

I especially loved the moment when the knight bids his sword to strike true one last time...And then...farewell...sniff

2. bakshi's fire and ice

la lang, lupit siya, especially the opening sequence when evil white blonde guy starts getting migraines, thus releasing ice bergs from the earth...

3. Light years

doomsday stuff involving great big evil gurgling gooey gelatin brain matter thing slowly destroying the alien world that created it.

4. unico in the island of magic (something my sis borrowed when we were kids. You think it's about a cute little unicorn, but it's actually about GENOCIDE!!! The land of forgotten toys was particularly haunting as well)

5. The mighty orbots

(don't kill me. That series just reminds me of Saturday mornings, when the family would go rent vhs from such establishments as junction video, video bug, and my especial favorite, the bijou. And we'd stock up on the orbots, max headroom, and eighties teen flicks with lots of gratuitous nudity. ah, those were the days...

Sunday, July 10, 2005

I'm starting this blog on a Sunday, a beautiful Sunday, a Sunday belonging to a glorious weekend when one of the most maddeningly glorious things happened to me, and I'd rather start bubbling with hope and cheer and ridiculous giggling rather than with my original first entry, which was all about worry and death and the sad things that just nibble at the corners of our brains and, make life, well, not really what we want it to be.

I wanted this blog to be about the simple stuff that makes me smile and makes me happy, but I'm starting the ball rolling by describing something incredibly huge for me, a day in my life which just might change the rest of it, I don't know, depends on where and how I take this, but I'm still on a very happy high, and I don't care, so here goes.

Neil Gaiman came to my city and my country. This is a miracle. I live in a far away, turbulent country, and Gaiman was a pseudo mythic figure in college, the enormously cool dude who somehow got everything right and made stories that were strange and scary and funny and sad, but above all, familiar, somehow. And now, he actually comes here. Here!!!

Now, I can be a proud and snotty girl, but yesterday, I let it all go and just allowed it all to happen. I stuck fast with three thousand others to see him in a big white tent, and we waited and waited, standing, hoping, weeping through a horrible set from a goth band, and finally finally he arrived and we all screamed and yelled and cameras were flashing and sparkling all over the place. He was there!! Leather jacket and all!!! He was actually standing in front of us, and he was speaking to us, and we screamed some more.

These things almost never happen to us way out here in the Philippines. Even in this global community we live in today, to actually have someone like Mr. Gaiman grace out shores seemed next to impossible. Yet there he was, speaking to us. And I guess, the knowledge of how rare and terrifyingly precious this visit is made us all scream even more. We wanted him to know how happy we were to see him. I think he was a bit taken aback. Apparently we outrank the Brazilians in terms of noise and public display.

The entire exhausting day, I waited and waited, 524th in the line, wondering if I would ever actually get my book signed. There were so many of us. He hugged and kissed some of the girls. They were crying and giggling at the same time when they got down from the stage. He looked at every single person and talked to them and made little pictures for them and told the weepy ones it was all right, and thanked the ones who brought gifts. Not one time did he seem tired or surly or impatient with anybody. He was just as kind and attentive to the 600th person in the line as he was to the 1st.

Finally it was my turn, and I was partly glad I was so tired, because I didn't have enough energy to pretend to be cool. He mispronounced my name, apologized, and I told him he could pronounce it any way he wanted. He signed my books, he drew me a rattus rattus, and then I gave him my gift. It's a CD of western pop songs translated into Filipino by one of our national artists, recorded by my mother back in the seventies, and I thought it would be a nice souvenir of his trip here, I told him, carefully enunciating each word, then blurting out that I had rehearsed the little speech the whole time waiting in line in my head, and i think i was very close to nervous tears.

but he said the gift was cool!!! And he reached his arm out, hugged me and kissed me!!! He looks at you straight in the eye and you don't feel stupid and silly for having said what you said. or thinking what you're thinking, which was 'thank you thanks so much for being here, actually here, you just destroyed some deep sad beliefs that we never seem to count in the big scheme of things and will all be left behind, you take away the bad taste of star wars, you make me want to pick up a pen again, you make me want to grow up just like you'

glorious magical weekend. My sister said it best, when she stumbled in a daze from the stage, all smiles, all teeth, eyes big and disbelieving:

"Neil Gaiman for Emperor of the World"