Monday, January 16, 2012

“You know you've read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend.”
- Paul Sweeny

My idea of an awesome summer vacation is to sit on a warm sand of the best beach in the world, reading a New York Times bestselling novel, with a Coco Water shake on my side at 7:00 AM.

So far, "reading a New York Times bestselling novel during a summer break" is the only thing I've got. And I get. Every year. Hoorah.

I can't remember exactly when I started to like books. I'm not even sure what's the first book I've read or finished. Maybe it was a Hardy Boys book. Or The Book of Mormon Stories. I don't know. But all I know is that the first time I went to National Bookstore, I was around 8 years old, I guess, I got butterflies in my stomach. And having no idea what that feeling was, I even thought I just wanted to poop. Good times. That was the time I knew that life without books, is life not worth living. Or at least for me.

I don't have a specific favorite genre. I read from Agatha Christie's books to J.K Rowling's, from Almanac to Edith Hamilton's. Though I must say, I wasn't particularly interested with self-help books before. I used to find them lame and that only old, unsuccessful people who are lost and unhappy are the ones who read them. Well, that changed when I got this copy of some second-hand Teenage-Guide-to-something-I-can't-remember book and realized how really helpful they are to open your mind to new perspectives. That's the time I had the desire to own more SHBs like Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and How to Win Friends and Influence People. But oh boy, I never thought they're expensive as heck. Thankfully, e-book was invented. But I don't know, sometimes it still feels different for me when I read from a real book compared when I read in front of a screen. I'm the kind of guy who likes to smell his books before reading it. I'm weird like that.

Lately, I've been having this unnecessary craving to read YA novels. I believe it started when I read The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky. Man, I was so into it that I almost memorized every line I liked in that book... and it never happened to me before! My memory is so bad I know I wouldn't be able to memorize even my girlfriend's number. If ever I'll have a girlfriend soon. Then, it followed when I read A Separate Peace by John Knowles and Looking for Alaska by John Green. And so right now I'm actually wishing someone likes me so much that they'll buy me a copy of The Failing of Our Stars by J.G. or How They Met, and Other Stories by David Levithan. PLEASE. PLEASE. PLEASE. I'll even let you sleep with me. Next year. Or not. Just please buy me a copy!

Somehow, they're becoming my new SHB. Like, I feel I must apply the life lessons I've learned from those stories. And that's great for me. I mean, entertainment plus a desire to change, who would think SA fiction would be my drug for depression and discouragements?

And speaking of which, I also love Nicholas Sparks. I know! That's so gay. But I can't help it. I'm such a sucker for tear-jerkers.

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Thursday, January 12, 2012
Debugging Backstage

"I can't imagine anything more worthwhile than doing what I most love. And they pay me for it."
-Edgar Winter

The Leadership Training went good; I was so energized and inspired to do better, just what I need for my remaining five months of work here. I say it's one of the best training sessions I've attended so far.

The food that was served was better than expected. I actually proposed to our President last Staff Meeting to replace the caterer due to previous problems we had with their choice of entrée and utensils but, they definitely revived their reputation yesterday.

My workshop went perfect. I actually felt a guiding hand when I was preparing the outline at 5:00 AM in the morning and while doing the actual workshop. It's so good to know that I got some divine help, for I know I could never deliver such a discussion relying on my talents and abilities alone.

I discussed three possible reasons why some people aren't doing the things they should be doing and not being who they should be, namely:

First, they don't know "it". Second, they don't understand the point. Third, they don't love "it". ("it" being the thing they should be actively engaged in and/or the person they should be)

To be able to empathize with those kinds of people, I thought of a part of my life when I've been, more or less, acting like them. And quickly, I remembered my college days.

They Don't Know "It"
I took up BS Computer Science in the University of Santo Tomas. It wasn't what I really wanted but my dad and sisters greatly encouraged me that I take it up and being an all-too-dependent person I am to my parents and siblings (even when it comes to decision making), without courage to say "no" to what they say I should do, I chose it.

I like doing things in cyberspace, i.e blogging, chatting and social networking. However, I was never interested to use the C Language (for I cannot even master the English language yet) nor debug a program which is like finding a needle in a haystack. I think I wasted my first few months in college whining about my decision and asking myself, "Why am I taking this boring and nonsense course?", even though my sister always tells me how much I could get paid someday. I didn't really know why Computer Programming was (and probably, still is) such a good course. Never did I done any research to at least know the standpoint of my concerned family. So, I ended up not being serious to my studies and just trying to make my way through the exams without really understanding Computer Programming.

They Don't Understand the Point

After several months of attending lectures and seminars, I finally came to realize how good BS CS is. However, like any Filipino soap opera when the premise is about to be concluded yet the show is at it's peek and gaining much fan-base, another barrier entered my mind. "Okay, now I understand why I should take this course. But what's the point of taking it? I mean, so what if I'll get a high-paying job someday? Would it really matter? All I want is a simple life in a suburb."

I was such a myopic teenager. Slow, I've been, to get the point of what my family wants for me. I wasn't really thinking how hard life is nowadays; that normal paychecks of the old world has turned meager income in the new world; that simple life now comprises of necessities which used to be called luxuries.

They Don't Love "It"
As I have mentioned, I'm not a computer person. I actually prefer Theater Arts or Speech Communication than printf and brackets. So even though I have learned many things about how marvelous PCs were made and how fulfilling it is to create an ATM-like programs with all its creative designs (after taking a few pills of Isometheptene), my heart still yearned for stage performances and radio dramas. I continued to watch Hamlet than Howe and Howe Tech , read 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens than The Complete Idiot's Guide to Java. That, I believe, is the biggest reason why I never excelled in my major subjects yet aced my English 101 and English Lit classes. I knew, even before, that I won't be able to exert much effort studying things I don't love.

I was actually happy when doing the workshop because 1. I really love giving out talks, seminars and lead discussions and 2. I did not just learn from others' answers and ideas but, surprisingly, 3. learned some things even from myself that I didn't know I knew before.

Surely, I'm ready for BYU-Hawaii. (if you find that totally unrelated, well, I believe you're right)
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Monday, January 9, 2012
Color me Opposite. Color me Red.

“When in doubt wear red.”
- Bill Blass



Red is the most ironic color, yeah?

Speaking of which, I would like to give a shout-out. Alex, you definitely inspired me to be "out there" and to chase my dreams. A million thanks to you, genius!

Also,, thank you (too) for being a part of my 2011 no matter how many islands apart we are from each other right now. See you soon.

Need to travel to Ozamiz City tomorrow afternoon. Will check-in at the Royal Garden Hotel for a night then have to deliver a workshop by Wednesday. And yep, I'm still unprepared. CRAMMING, you make my life so exciting.

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Thursday, January 5, 2012
New Year, Old Stuff

“I've got a great ambition to die of exhaustion rather than boredom.”
- Thomas Carlyle

I'm back in the O-building.
New People, Same Job, Old Attitude.

I e-mailed my sister this morning, telling her how unhappy I am to be back here. Of course, she told me I'm being pessimistic again (for the Nth time) and definitely ungrateful with this so-called position of trust... which I totally believe is true. But then again, with this oh-so great and wonderful UNPRODUCTIVE day I'm having, I surely wish I stayed in The City of Good Life.

I guess I should repent now.

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