Amidst the Smoke and Booz (Circa 2001)

(from the pages of my diary…)

I said nothing upon hearing Miles frantically professed how she still badly wanted Kaye back in her arms. I didnt even bother say any word of encouragement for her to at least manage to feel relieved and eventually function well once more. I did nothing. Not that I was droopy towards the episode. It was just because Miles – my best girl budd and steady emotional partner in life,love and crime, unintentionally made me reminisce a vivid picture of what was it like to be left alone by someone who told you would stand by your side no matter what, someone who told you that love would conquer all.

Miles was crying loudly while relentlessly drinking a bottle of draft beer and continuously puffing her cigar. For almost five extensive years of solid and unadulterated friendship, that was the only night I saw her lost herself. I can’t blame her. Kaye, her girlfriend for over two years, apparently exchanged her for a japanese social nightbird.

I said nothing upon hearing Miles frantically professed how she still badly wanted Kaye back in her arms. I didn’t even bother say any word of encouragement for her to at least manage to feel relieved and eventually function well once more. I did nothing. Not that I was droopy towards the episode. It was just because Miles unintentionally made me reminisce a vivid picture of what was it like to be left alone by someone who told you would stand by your side no matter what, someone who told you that love would conquer all. I remembered when I was in the same situation, trying to be hard-hitting for my own sake even though deep within, the twinge was too much to endure and swallow. Fragment by fragment, both quixotic and appalling memories of this Guy (lets just hide him by the pseudo name John), my ex-partner, twirled into me. It was the summer of 2001.

I must confess it was a fast-paced relationship. We met through a common friend. We exchanged numbers. He called me up the night after. I drove to his place. We had fried chicken and pizzas for dinner. We kissed. We slept together. The next day, we were officially a couple. It was like a horse race. Mikee Cojuangco can make a run for her money.

John’s condominium unit in Makati became my second asylum. Since it was a summer and I was about to be part of the working class ofprofessionals back then, I got to spend myriad hours with him since his work in one of the premiere makers of succulent and vigorous pineapple products both in the Philippines and abroad wasn’t really a tedious and demanding one.

Oftentimes he would wake me up after a strenuous night just to ask me to properly tuck his long sleeves in his trousers. And since I am not the type of a human being that can suitably get back to slumber after being disturbed, I would sometimes make his coffee, work on his laundry, organize his much disorganized closet, or at times cook for him the dishes I learned from taking basic culinary arts when I was still in high school. In return, I would criticize his indolence when it comes to doing household chores. Nevertheless I can’t blame a guy who grew up with ayaya until the age of 13 and a person extremely allergic to detergent soap. But then again, I never felt I was domesticated, even a bit, for I cherished how he actually appreciated my simple efforts to become a good partner to him.

On the other side, I also did appreciate his very own way of showing me his passion. He several times drove me to fancy dinners that there were occurrences that I silently grumble to him about the price of each plate, but money never really became a large deal for him. Also, he gave me dozens of stuff toys that we each named after our childhood sweethearts . He even knew the birthday of my mom and my sister until this year, he greeted her.

He is a perfect guy and we were a perfect couple..

Whenever we were free, we do movie marathons. He told me that he was crazy about Julia Roberts. He was so engrossed that within the span of our relationship, we watched Pretty Woman for eight times. John had already mastered some of the movie’s lengthy lines delivered by both Julia and Richard Gere. One time while watching the mentioned film, he recalled that the first time he watched the movie was way back mid 1995 in Quad together with his ex-girlfriend in high school. I simply ignored his recollection of it and instead thought that John was just really a huge aficionado of the physically big-mouthed yet competent Hollywood actress.

Speaking of competition, John and I battled things a lot. I would never forget our encounters over play station. We even considered having eating contests and the one who finished last takes care of the mucky dishes. John and I were so tough and so competitive that in some instances, even the smallest sparks lead to destructive forest fires just like what we see on the Discovery Channel.

If Sandra Bullock became the Ms. Congeniality, Chris was the Mr. Congeniality and his portrayal of the role would definitely hand him a Golden Globe nomination. He was extraordinarily congenial that he flirted with different guys and went home with the “others” when I wasn’t around. I knew that awful truth when I got to read from his mobile phone’s inbox a message from another person, thanking John for a wonderful and amazingly erotic night at his house and he even asked my John when would be the next saga. I retained my forbearing stance and calmly asked him about the guy. “It was just sex. I’m sorry,” he said upon realizing that I had discovered his duplicity. With those words of admittance, I just considered it a removed pebble that got inside my loafers. Then came twice. And thrice. I tried to keep my temperance. “I won’t care if other people would get a taste of John as long as I know for a fact that his heart is still mine,” I firmly told myself. On that particular moment, I knew I was in love. Unfortunately, it was also the similar moment when John lost his love for me.

The judgment day came. John called me and he asked if we can talk. In his unusual sinister tone, I felt a sudden rush that pulsated all over my system. Still, I overcame the uneasiness I have had inside and after a few seconds I agreed to talk with him. Blah…blah…blah…and he finally said, “It was not you. It was me.” John wanted me to react. But I decided to ask or retort no more. I dropped the game, I gave up the competition.

After a few days of hearing John’s farewell antics and eventually getting separated with him, nobody even had an inch of clue of how much pain I went through. I still loved John so much that I endured dialing his number even though he kept ignoring my calls. I still loved John so much that I would send messages to him, telling him how much I missed our time and how much I longed for everything even though I got no reply from him, even though I would start feeling tiny pains in my thumb. I still loved him so much that I incessantly left messages to his answering machine even though I knew he was home and just purely didn’t want to talk with me. I loved him so much that I almost lost my sanity.

When the wound was still fresh, I decided not to live in the past. Yes there were memories that I just wanted to linger forever, but sometimes some memories just don’t. It was not really me. It was not really my fault. Sometimes, it was really just how life went for me. After some sighs and sobs, there were lessons learned that helped me continue my life. The “it-was-not-you-it-was-me phenomenon” soon became over.
Its was many years years ago, I was crying loudly while relentlessly drinking a bottle of draft beer and continuously puffing my cigar. That was the only night Miles saw me lost myself. She can’t blame me. I just fell in love…truthfully and faithfully… without conditions… one hundred and one percent, if it was possible…

Source: http://www.blueunicorn.blogspot.com/2008/04/amidst-smoke-and-booz-circa-2001.html

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