I really thought it was radio drama. I was in the van on my way to work trying to contain my anger at the slow-moving traffic along Marcos Highway by listening to Testament’s Dark Roots of Earth… and here was this hysterical lady on the radio, really emotional, an actress gunning for an award. Then the words “Bilibid” and “arrest me” and “Mr. President” were mentioned and I realized, “Shit, it’s a De Lima presscon!”
Indeed, the government’s War on De Lima is getting uglier and uglier by the day. It has turned into another political shitstorm complete with a sex video and a wiggy, wig-wearing character, but notably missing an important ingredient: a case filed in court. It has dragged on longer than it should without proper complaints being filed and meanwhile the peso has plunged to its seven-year low vs. the dollar and vigilantes are running around offing suspected drug users and the streets are virtual car parks with no solution in sight and on social media people are ready to tear each other’s face off just because one is on the other side of the political fence.
So much for national unity. ##
A soundtrack album that is as good as the movie. If I were to pick the 10 best films from the 68 I’ve seen so far this year (target is 100), Sing Street will be one of them. It’s up there with Almost Famous, if you dig movies about growing up with rock music.
Indeed, since I’m not an outdoorsy person, movies dominate my weekends. TV shows, too. And books and graphic novels, and CDs and Spotify. I juggle them all like a deft carnival performer. Some mornings I bike, but only if I can drag my ass out of bed early, which isn’t often. Generally I just bum around the house doing nothing that can meet society’s definition of productive. That’s okay. I like my weekends to be quiet and ordinary. More so these days when the Duterte administration seems to be doing its darnedest to keep me gritting my teeth for an entire workweek.
What depresses me, however, is my inability to write. Try as I might, I just can’t. Inspiration won’t hit me. I’d agonize over sentence after sentence, until I abandon the whole thing in frustration, and just check out a movie. I blame the 40 hours of typing, editing and writing I have to clock in every week to earn my keep. I blame the pollution and the assholes and the terrible traffic that little by little are killing my brain cells. I blame my age: Show me a guy who is as passionate and good in what he does at 37 as when he was 18, and I’ll buy that guy a bucket of beer at Giligan’s. He should tell me his secret.
Meanwhile, I try. And try, and try, and try. And sometimes I hit gold, like when I’m able to crank out a blog, like today. ##
In 1965, Carlos “Botong” Francisco, the national artist, on a nature trip with a troop of Boy Scouts in the hills of Angono, stumbled into a cave with crude, primitive drawings on the walls. Unsure of what he just found, he reported the site to the National Museum. A research team was sent, and after an investigation where stone tools were recovered from the site, the drawings were found to be dating back to the Neolithic age — thousands and thousands of years before this mess we call civilization.
The place is now known as the Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs, and on Sunday it became one of the highlights of my morning bike ride with friends.