Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Metal Beasts of The Paved Path

Recently a good friend of mine was in the situation of driving way under the influence, and as all bad stories go, he got into the accident. Crashed alongside a road divider at a high speed, and while him and his passenger were unscathed, thank the gods for that, the car though was another story. Yes, this is a sequence of bad decisions all adding up for an explosive conclusion, but the morality of the story is another issue. This event just got me thinking about something a little more general.

Automobiles ain't nothing to fuck with.

I'm not talking about Transformers, but the actually Carl Benz invention. Just think about their weight, one to two tons of steel that can travel up to speeds that things of that size should not be able to go. It moves along roads that get inches near pedestrians and just other pieces of property. Also the amount of power, or effort, it takes to put these massive machines into motion, is so minimal, sometimes we forget what they are capable of.  Also all it takes one malfunction within the dozens of parts that makes up the machine, for a situation to get a hairy. Or one judgment call.

It is terrible that our lives nowadays rely on them so much, and don't even get me started on the Fossil Fuel standards that car makers have been skewing for years so their comrades in the oil industry can be happy men. It is a vicious circle. Also the environmental impacts, heartbreaking~

It's the worse in the United States, where land has never been an issue, there is plenty of it in the mainland, as people staked their grounds as wide as the eye can see. Look at San Diego, where the suburbia there is sprawled out for miles. Unless you are in a metropolitan area that needs a public transportation to function, you have to gas up and shut up. So reliant on it for work and just personal needs, it is just how our lives are mapped out nowadays.

So recently I have been just noticing the cars around me a lot of more, and just being a defensive driver. Consciously I noticed this a few days ago, but maybe just hearing about what happened to my friend, it just got me putting my guard up driving around. I know these cautionary thoughts will slowly dissipate, and I will go back to being the careful driver I am without the extra worry.

But I think this story is just griping for a simpler life like the old days, where people would walk, ride the carriage, catch a train or tractor, and take time to converse with the people around them.  When I hear my sister in LA has to drive 2-3 hours to work, or wake up at the crack of dawn, that is just disgusting!

Been writing more though, really working hard to finish a decently edited draft of my novel of working on, by the end of the weekend. It is so much fun, I know the end product will be satisfactory. 

Thursday, August 22, 2013


Mark Waid's Empire is a brilliant devised comic that shows the aftermath of a world, where the villains have "won." Golgoth, the book's main character who is the supreme architect that manufactured the fall of every country and hero on Earth, is now faced with the challenges of running what he has conquered. His villainous allies are his cabinet members, and so the citizens of world are blessed with people like a axe-wielding medieval executioner as the minister of interior affairs and the minister of information is wired up to watch and record everyone, "Big Brother"'s wet dream . My favorite character though is Lucullan, the minister of war, to deal with the small pockets of resistance that pop up time to time, and Golgoth's right hand man. Every time he talks, he uses big and fancy words to showcase his supreme intellect no doubt, its so great. Like this panel~

 1. To use evasions or ambiguities; equivocate.
2. To change sides; apostatize.

What a word to use in my writing. The whole story really does explore what these bastards are, like the characters are not anti-heroes, they are villains with wants, desires, and bad habits (deadly would be a more apt description).  So of course, their conduct while running the Empire, is full of scheming, backstabbing, baseless accusations, and sucking up to power. It is Waid's deconstruction of the superhero genre at its finest. 

Monday, August 19, 2013

Getting Old

Recently, I have been pretty physically tired just due to the sheer amount of work that is on my plate but that's ok, it's something that a little sleep can't fix. Mentally, pretty good, but this past Sunday, I kind of just was in the crossfire of so much shit from my grandfather that I honestly just stepped out my house and cried for a good 20 minutes. To hear him complain to my brother about me, all I could think of does he really want to alienate the few people around him so he can really die alone? That thought did cross my mind, while I don't believe it, the things he says does warrant that kind reaction. When he is mad he always says stuff like "When I die it is your fault..." or "when I'm gone you all will regret it..." or "without me you would have nothing..." To quote my holistic aunt, he is a ball of negative energy. I usually just ignore that kind of silly talk from him but Sunday I just had to step away for a second, take my niece and nephew outside and watch them pick all the flowers they can found, and be a bit separated from that attitude.  

My grandfather has good intentions, is caring, and is a hard-working man but has made many mistakes that he still regrets to this day. I know this because he constantly talks about and reminds me and my grandfather pretty much every day. It is just a sad sight to see, because his body is slowly giving out, 93 years old for a Chamorro is a long life span, and instead of just accepting a few truths he rather project his pain and dislikes. I feel very sad for him, I do, the person who he cares about the most in life, his eldest daughter, treats and yells at him like a 8 year old kid even to this day. My grandma tells me he likes her the most because she is exactly like her, and when she met his family for the 1st time, they were all like that, constantly talking and criticizing each other. It sounds like such an ugly environment, and is prevalent in some Chamorro household families back at that time and now. But me, I don't do much talking back because if I do, it just gives him an excuse to complain and get equally excited back, a process which has fueled that negative energy for years. My brother tells me that I shouldn't tip-toe around him and just face the music and tell him he needs to treat me with respect or else, if it gets worse maybe, but now, it is manageable. And at his old age, I couldn't even fathom of doing so. Just wish I could get more time away from home, so  the time I am here I am in a positive attitude. Hopefully soon things will change.  

It can be tough but there are many good moments that I will cherish and always remember with him, like he can really make me laugh with stupid jokes from out of nowhere hahaha and be kind, considerate, all the normal grandfatherly things, I just wish that more people can give him the attention that he wants, because in the end, especially when age is getting the best of us, that is what some people desire, the fear of being alone is strong.  He is so scared all the time, when I'm pushing in the wheel chair down a hill he thinks he's going to flip over or roll down and slam in the fence, even though I have wheeled him down that hill thousands of times in the last 3 years. Like a broken record, he says the same things every day, and then complain how I don't do it right, I can take maybe 10 hours of this a day, but recently, with people off-island and busy with stuff, my full day tackling's have been at times a struggle.  

Good to get these feelings off my chest, I've always use my relationship with my grandparents as an excuse for stopping me for something I wanted. Because in the beginning I thought that devout loyalty and responsibility was the right thing to do, but I was not even sure what that meant back than because the way I interpreted was something that would was unhealthy, but wiser and smarter people have helped me make important self-realizations. I was kind thrown into the thick of things the past of couple of years and did a lot of self-discovery in the process.

This song really cheered me up too, that dancing, too awesome~

Friday, August 16, 2013

A Revisit

When I 1st started this blog and was trying to think of title, I took the famous Forrest Gump movie line, "Life is Like a Box of Chocolates, you never know what you get," and gave it a cold and pessimistic spin, a belief that I would feel more so than not during that time. Yes, I perverted a statement that is supposed inspire life and its journey. If I was a character in that classic movie, and sat next to Tom Hanks in his white suit waiting for the bus, and he offered me chocolate, I feel I would sample a piece and found some sort of peanut in it that would trigger a harmful allergic reaction. That's how life was rolling along for me, negative news piled upon negative news. My home and work are at the same place, and it bore down my soul as I could not differentiate amongst it and could not physically leave because I might need to help whoever is helping.  Every moment I had during the more turbulent times, I had to worry about something. When I woke up, when I went to bed, when I get fucked up during "my free time," when I am worrying about something I had to worrying about something else. It was a vicious circle that might not have been started as an exercise of mental self-flagellation , but it became that. I know everyone has shit on their mind, but when myself was the one being the passed up, I knew something was up.

But I put a front and rolled with those punches because the situation I was in. I worked my ass because I care for my grandparents, and I have natural affinity for old people, probably because of my grandparents are the ones who raised me. One of the saddest things I ever witnessed in a movie was that scene in Godzilla, the American version with Mathew Broderick which is pretty much universally disliked, where an old geezer is fishing in some sewage infected pier in New York. He casts out his rod, and his ecstatic to get a catch. What he soon learns though is that he just caught Godzilla, and he gets eaten up by the large mutated lizard. As a 12-13 year old, I fucken cried my eyes out. Holy shit, it was so sad, I remember his toothless smile so clearly, when he realizes that his rod has snagged something, than moments to be killed, it was heartbreaking. My love and devotion allowed me to a 3-person job, as quoted by the family doctor I visited last year, but I sought out help to help put myself back in my own picture.

I did see a therapist a few times, free sessions provided by the National Caretaker Association, and he did help me give me tools to deal with the situation. The man is a marriage counselor, and one of the most frequent visitors is wife's who watch and take care of their kids all day. He used adjectives like overwhelmed, confused, worried, tired, and self-doubting their skills as a parent.  It is a stressful job taking care of people. Then he pulled out a therapist buzz word in expectations, and having realistic ones, particular ones that you can control. Ok Doc...

Expectations? What are even fucken expectations? The concept is so dirty, it can be the greatest high or the rock bottom nest low. But the point that I got from the therapist is that you can be in control of it, since it is prediction of your mind. That was a concept I could get behind. Why worry about anything at home, I mean like the way I did before, I have been asked this year a few times by people.. "Do you do a good job?" At 1st I think that's is an odd question, but than I just instantly answer "...Yes." I do an amazing fucken job, my mom taught me the crash course to be a caretaker in one day because she had leave and go back to work. This backhanded question to me just, which I don't care people say the shit they want because they think I'm a irresponsible person due to I have no idea, but it just kind took me out of the equation and looked at the big picture. Even the nurses who visit commend me on my performance and my mom, auntie, and cousins thank me on countless occasions. My expectations as I looked at it than, is to keep on doing what I'm doing, because it is doing the job. I really thank those family friends/relatives who really think low of me that really got me thinking differently, because it really improve my well being and think about other things.

Even though I only did 3 sessions, I felt it was useful.. I can't remember when I saw him, but it was sometime 4-5 months ago but I will say what was the most thing that came out of this venture was the fact that I even took the time to call and make the appointment. Sometimes I feel like I'm part-Irish because Freud once said that they are the only people who impervious to psycho-analysis, while this sure ain't psychoanalysis, the idea is that therapy was not something that I would never consider for most of my adult life. Free helpful services should have been a big blip on my radar but I just ignored it. The act in itself was attempt for me to reach out to people, converse, and communicate and that is great. Even to familiar faces, people you see every, just try talking to them, in a little bit more detail. If they respond, well it is a great thing. If they do not respond, I am sure those 40 seconds it takes to ask will be wasted on some sort of digital or electronic device. 

These positive changes did not happen overnight, as most things in life, but I slowly did do shit that made my day worthwhile, instead of just drinking soju and playing video games until the crack of dawn whie feeling like shit the next because of lack of sleep.  Writing, while my commitment to this blog did expire my love of writing did not, and reading have been things I have been just enjoying. When I read that sentence it does sound really generic and vague, but the way I can absorb and immerse into these ideas, it just speaks to the creative part of my mind. I work diligently on my stories, and I will create something that I can be damn proud of,  and if others like what they read, well that is fucken fantastic. As an artist, I truly believe that "you" are your primary audience, I mean if you do not like, or like is too subjective, but if you do not care about something you are creating, than how the hell is somebody else? Of course this is just a principle as when more parties are involved, or money, things can be a little more complicated,  but the idea still stands somewhat.

 I when you start take care of yourself in one way, and it is a positive thing, it is likely to spread to the other facets of your life. I see this has definitely happened.

 I see my classmates from college on SKYPE talking and now they are all playing DOTA 2 together, and while it does seem fun, I have not even downloaded Steam yet. I mean  I still play a few games every few days, but not to the extent I used to, 4-6 hours a night, and it is usually just to play with my bro or when some of my gaming buddies ask me to play with them, but on my own accord, don't have the fire I used to have. Still love watching professional matches though from time-to-time when it is hyped, I invested too much time and knowledge just miss these storylines for players that I have been watching for a long time.

I've also getting to know someone who is quite spectacular, she is so down-to-earth, intelligent, talented, beautiful, funny, passionate, genuine, dorky, caring... and countless other adjectives. This song has been on the daily playlist for the last month or so.