Second Natal Decade

Assuming that the average human life spans around 70 years, plus given the fact that today’s lifestyle isn’t getting our health any better, I have already exhausted one third of my life without even really living it. Upon this natal day of mine, I haven’t felt the clichéd feeling of being happy, instead it just felt normal. Leaving the teen years behind, it makes me feel old and dying. Old because today’s the mark of the second decade of my existence; dying because if I’m lucky enough, I still have 4 decades left to begin living or just continue existing. Either of the two, it takes courage to do both. Lo and behold, I am now twenteen years young :)

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I just watched the movie It’s Kind Of A Funny Story, and I feel the protagonist so much. I feel the same way that he does. He’s basically depressed and wanted to take his life like I do at this point. It’s just that our source of depression doesn’t come from dramatic reasons like broken family, molestation, abuse, and the like. It comes from insignificant issues like being obsessed with a girl who in turn doesn’t even know the way I feel for her. For some pathetic reason it gives me a great amount of sadness when I come to think that she’s basically in love with another guy.

 

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Me Being Me.. And Mean.

People often say “Be true to yourself”, “Just be yourself”, “Don’t mind what others think”, and all the other ego boosting lines that tell you that you can do it, that no one else can do it better but yourself. But how far can those lines go? Are those lines supposed to encourage cultivate even the dark side of yourself?

Being you doesn’t mean that you’re perfect, or you should be perfect. Being you is a package. You are created unique. In that uniqueness, you have your strengths, shortcomings, imperfections, and blemishes. But the question is, are we supposed to entertain our imperfections just because people told us to be true to ourselves?

They say that when you can’t beat them, join them. It is indeed logical. Why logical? Logical because, if you are a hard loser, engaging your enemies knowing that you stand no chance against them, only means defeat. Why not turn the tables? Instead of facing sure defeat, why not join among their ranks and face victory? I don’t know if that strategy is acknowledged in the art of war, because it sounds like you’re giving away your dignity. But, to a man whose priority is winning, why not?

I’d like to propose another idea, or version about the beating one another thingy. If you can’t beat them, at least pull them down to your level. Does it sound close to winning? Yes, it is a no. Confusing, I know. Ha ha! It may not sound close to winning but, it do sounds like both of you are in the same odds of not winning. Does it sound familiar? It sure does, and it is called the crab mentality.

Why is the idea of beating one another involved in being true to ourselves? I’d like to point out that I have the mentality of “If I can’t get it, neither of us should.” Why should I suffer alone, when the two of us can suffer together? And to the question I’ve raised earlier, this is what I’m trying to point out. Should we continue to cultivate the “dark side” of the package, where in my case the crab mentality thingy?

I’d like to tell you a story.  It was during my Management class. During that period, we were to check our examinations. The examination comprises a 60 items for True or False, 5 items for Multiple Choice, 15 items for Identification, and a 20 items for Enumeration, for a total of 100 items. Instead of using the traditional way of checking for True or False, which was “Number 1, true. Number 2, false. Number 3, false.” He improvised it into a more efficient way, which was enumerating first all the items which were true, and then all the remaining items which were not mentioned were automatically false.

During that time, I was thinking that if I can’t get a high score, the owner of the paper that I was checking shouldn’t also get a high one. When my professor finished enumerating all the items that are True, I said a remark in which for me was just nothing, but audible enough to be heard by everyone in the classroom. I jokingly, or intentionally said, I’m not sure which, that “It’s so fun!” There, I got the attention of my professor and classmates. My professor got the hint that the paper I was checking had many mistakes.

My professor told me that, “Don’t you know it is immoral to laugh at someone’s misery?” Boom! I was hit head on. I don’t know if they can’t identify a sarcasm or they just took the remark seriously. I think they took my remark seriously, obviously. I may have thought of getting even with people. But, I never thought that what I did was immoral. Now, I’m starting to get confused with ethics and morals. Tch.

So, the sadistic part of me, the part of me that enjoys the misery of others, would it still be me if I’d stop being it? Will I continue to do it just because it’s part of being me?

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Aphrodite’s Heart

A heart untamed that longs to acquire,
enslaved by the beauty it desires.
For lack of will to show restraint,
paved the way for love to cause some pain.

A love misconduct — an infatuation,
a biased heart when it comes to beauty.
The beautiful culprit and the naive heart,
conspired to blur the line between love and lust.

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Infatuation

Love at first sight.
Unexpected,
so sweet.

Superficial love,
impulsive,
so swift.

Naive heart,
yielding to beauty,
attracted to mere looks,
disappointed and torn apart.

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The Palawan Barrier

I dedicate this entry to: Twinsy
I should have PMed you this, but i think it’s better to make it as a blog entry instead. And I got tired of rereading it, so sorry for the grammatical errors along the entry.

Since I’m shifting to another course, you’ll wonder what course would that be. I’m the practical and ambitious kind of person. When we say practical, I don’t want to do something that would cost me great and then benefit me less. Or in financial situation, I want to earn something more than what I have paid for. And when we say ambitious, I aim for something that I think is impossible for me to achieve. Practical and ambitious don’t get along that well for me. I can’t be practical and ambitious at the same time. If I’d be practical, my actions greatly depends upon the current situation I am facing, thus leading me to do the things that would effectively solve my problems as of the moment. Of course, without risking anything. If I’d be ambitious, my actions greatly depends upon the future goals that I think would be promising for me. Of course, risking things that even I don’t know if the risks that I’ve taken would not be in vain.

I could not deny the fact that I’ve chosen the course Maritime Transportation because of the  great salary it could give me. Practical? Yes. It’s practical because first, the tuition fee is reasonable. Second, the salary later on is just overwhelming. Ambitious? Yes. It’s ambitious because I have to undergone so many trainings before I could earn the salary I’m yearning to have. In conclusion, the ambitious part of this course compromises the practical side of it. I’m not a risk-taker, and it kills me slowly every time I’m risking myself over its promising reward, given my physical condition, it’s hard for me to remain ambitious and be practical at the same time.

So what’s the alternative course that you have in mind?

The course I’m shifting to is BSPE or Bachelor of Science in Petroleum Engineering. Practical? Yes. Unlike any other engineering courses, this course does not conduct a board exam. That means after graduation, I’d be a licensed engineer. Or I dunno, that’s what it’s trying to say right? And it’s also ranked as the highest paid job in the world. But then again, that’s just an assumption because surveys across the internet varies regarding what’s the highest paid job in the world. But, let’s stick to the idea that it’s the highest income earner across the globe. Or at least, it’s belongs to the highest. Ambitious? Very. There are only 2 schools in the Philippines that offers that course. One is located in Batangas, and yes, you guessed the other one right, Palawan. It’s ambitious because basing on my family’s financial status, a plane ticket is already a hard-earned-money. And, that’s the first problem I’m encountering right now. Second, we have no relatives living in Palawan. The good thing is my father knows someone who resides there. Third problem is, I have to live there all by myself. I’d be paying monthly rentals for the boarding house, I’d be budgeting my allowance every month, I can’t be fetched by my dad whenever I’d be going home late. Fourth problem is, I have to do the laundries all by myself. Fifth problem is, I’d be a 520 miles (836 kms.) away from my friends and family. Sixth problem is, I’m not sure if I could avail an internet connection for myself. Which sucks big time.

Last Sunday (May 12, 2013):
I went to Palawan together with my dad. The time of our flight was 8:30AM, and that was the first time I’ve ridden a plane. When the departing time was almost there, I got tensed and so nervous that I had to go use the comfort room of the airport and defecate. haha! They say that the frightening part of riding a plane was during landing, but I beg to differ. I get nervous when the plane departs from the ground because I can’t decipher how the plane lifts itself from the ground and supports itself in the air. When landing, it relieves me when I feel the wheels of the plane softly impacts the runway.

There are no taxis in Palawan, only tricycles which could also serve as a taxi if you happen to need one. There are also jeepneys that leads you to their designated routes. The place is peaceful. In fact the peace and order of the city which is Puerto Princesa is somewhat similar to Davao’s. The city is soooo clean. You can’t see any rubbish lying around.

There are malls in Davao which could also be seen in Puerto Princesa, Robinson’s and NCCC.

The Palawan Barriers:
Communication:
The dialect that is used there is Filipino or known as tagalog. It ain’t really a barrier because I am fluent in speaking Filipino. Although, I found it awkward because when me and dad were conversing to one  another, I’ve gotta use tagalog because it’s unethical if I’m gonna speak using my native tongue. It gives me the chill listening to myself when I speak to my dad in tagalog whenever there are people around. The real communication barrier in Palawan is myself. I’m not the kind of person who communicates that often. At times, I’m already contented to know that the people I care about are safe and still kicking. Unlike my father, he communicates mom every now and then, updating her almost every move we made while in there. Informing her this and that. There’s also this other thing, I don’t know if I could have my own internet access if ever I’d pursue the course. Having no internet connection there is like missing half of my life. And because of my personality, I doubt that I’d have a great time communicating with people. I mean befriending them. What lies ahead of my future?!

Finances:
This would really be a huge barrier. Like what I’ve said a while ago, the number one issue is plane ticket. Let’s say the cheapest is 5k. Where the heck would I get 5k? The board and lodging would also be expensive, that would be 3k monthly. Plus my daily transportation fare. My daily allowance. Daily food allowance. Not mentioning the tuition fee, books, and other school related materials. Laundry. We were estimating that it would cost more or less 30k per month.

Distance:
Distance is obviously the most painful barrier. Painful because I’d be too far away from my family and friends. Finances and communication barrier would not be a big deal if somehow they’re just one jeepney ride away.

And yeah, I kept on saying the word barrier. What do I really mean about that word? A barrier that blocks me from what? I dunno, I think barriers that block me from my comfort zone? And yeah, since it’s an engineering course, I don’t know if my mental capacity to analyze and solve many challenging mathematical equations would help me. This situation is really a 50:50 or do or die. If I survive this 5 year course, then I’ve hit the jackpot. But if ever, God-forbid, that I won’t really make it, it’s like all the efforts and all the money would be put to waste. The time, yeah, the precious time would also be in vain.

My parents are pressuring me to decide now if I would pursue this course. I have only less than 2 weeks to decide and comply all the lacking requirements I needed for requirement. If ever I’d pursue this path, more or less I’d be coming back to Palawan on May 31, 2013. They want me to decide now. They want me to have an alternative course to choose on if ever I won’t pursue the promising offers that that course brings.

I’m afraid, I’m nervous, and I’m frightened. I’m undecided, I’m indecisive. It’s like I don’t want to go to school na.

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Let’s Talk About Frustration

I am currently enrolled in Bachelor of Science in Marine Transportation. I chose this course because of practical reasons. First, the tuition fee is not unreasonable (read: über-expensive ). Second, I’m not enrolling for a course that the work/job later on could not compensate the expenses that schooling had put me into. Third, the maritime industry is the only industry wherein the title of profession is acknowledged. Please elaborate. If you are a licensed nurse in the Philippines, your title is not credited there in Canada, or as I assumed. Hence if you’re a Captain or a Master Mariner in the Philippines, you’re also a Captain by the time you arrive in Russia. My point is, Maritime’s title of profession could be used internationally.

This course has only three years allotted for studying, while the remaining one year is for apprenticeship, meaning for the 4th year of this course, we’ll be on board the ships.

If one should have the desire to become a sailor, one must be physically fit. Upon enrolling, all aspiring Captains (read: enrollees) are going to experience meticulous health examinations. The list below are the medical requirements needed upon enrollment.
Medical Requirements:
- Ishihara Test
- Hearing Test
- Visual Acuity
- Medical Certificate
- Dental Certificate
- Chest X ray
- ECG
- Complete Blood Count (CBC)
- Blood Typing
- Urinalysis
- Stool Examination
- Hepa B Antigen
- Hepa B Antibodies

Have I mentioned it is to be complied yearly?

First of, during my first year I almost haven’t passed the Hearing Test. At first, I was so confident that I’d be able to ace the Hearing Test because my ears are trained for music. What I had failed to realize is that the long exposures I had from loud music from band practices made my hearing ability poor. I was and still am diagnosed with mild hearing loss. I was referred to the EENT specialist to have my ears checked. To God’s mercy, I had passed the said ear examination. During my whole freshman year, I was so fearful that I won’t be able to enroll the following year. The words medical examination haunts me every time I hear them. I think I have developed the phobia of not being able to pass the Hearing Test, or anything listed in the Medical Requirements.

During my second year, I was already convinced that I’d be able to finish this course, that I’d be able wear the gala during graduation, yet the fear of not passing the medical examinations still remained in me. I had been cautious when it came to band practices, I now use ear plugs that helped minimized the decibels that passes through my ears. The Hearing Test was just the same, I was still referred to the EENT specialist. But against all odds, I was able to pass it again. Then came the visual acuity, another thing that later on became one of the things I dread the most. During the visual acuity, I had only managed to get a 30/25. That means the precious 20/20 vision I once had was gone.

The supposedly last year of schooling as a Maritime Student, became the point wherein I had to stop and shift into another course. As I went to the optometrist to have my eyes checked, the complication on my eyes became worse, now I have to wear glasses. I had even managed to secure a Visual Acuity Certification of 20/20 which is good. But, I haven’t had a Hearing Test yet. I said to myself that if I’d pass the Visual Acuity, the Hearing Test would not be a hindrance anymore, and I’m all the way for enrollment, I’m all the way for becoming a third year, and I’m all the way for graduation.

The schedule for our enrollment is scheduled from May 6 to May 11, 2013. As early as May 1, I was already processing the requirements for enrollment (read: medical requirements). Upon that night, on the day I’ve had my eyes checked, we had discussed the issue regarding my eyes together with my parents and my, what’s the male term for aunt by the way? We had discussed that since the issue regarding my eyes is given, finishing my studies won’t do me any good if later on I won’t be able to get on board the ship anyway. It would be useless if I can’t even use my schooling to get a job. See the point? As early as now, we’re taking preventive measurements to avoid further casualties.

During those 2 years of studying, I had learned to make the most out of every day. I learned to maximize the remaining days I had, because somewhere deep inside me, there’s a voice that’s telling me that sooner or later, I won’t be able to make it. There are these people upon learning about the career I’ve chosen would say, “Oh! So you’re going to be a Captain someday.” I just sheepishly responded to them, “Oh, yeah, of course. A Captain.” Deep inside, I’m telling myself, how I wish that I could be a Captain someday. It’s frustrating on my part because people are looking up at me as a future Captain. But now, now that I’m not even able to finish my schooling, I have failed my parents. I have failed their expectations on me. The reason why I was not convincing myself that I’d be a Captain someday every time they comment about me being a future Captain is because I’m not buying myself some false hopes.

It’s really frustrating to leave my close friends behind (Chloe, Lincold, Khristian, Ivy, Donna, Ralph, Venroi, Jayson, Nelson), as well as my Peer Facilitators family, and the instructors who made my Scholastic Records a decent and presentable one. I would miss the chance to wear the 3 stripes on my shoulder board. I would miss the chance to benefit from my classmate who’s now a Core Commander. I would miss the chance to be with the people who gave me worth, the people whom I know won’t leave me midair, the people who I’m not afraid to show the real me.

I feel depressed.
I feel sad.
I feel alone.
I feel pathetic.
I feel frustrated.

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