23 days

random rumination number 4 - friends
i have an unusual talent, or skill, or gift, or whatever you may want to call it. i am unsure how i might accurately describe this uncanny skill, but this might serve as an accurate illustration: in a crowd of complete strangers, i am more likely to end up knowing more people by the end of the evening than most. just last week, i worried about going to a certain party where i might not know anyone, but someone assured me that being left out is something i am most likely to be incapable of. i relate greatly with nearly everyone, regardless of persuasion or status. unlike a lot of the people i know, i am not saddled by the insecurity of classifying people into boxes with discriminating labels such as "people i like" and "people i don't like". on rare occasions that i do lump people on the second box, it is likely that that person must have an extremely offensive or derisive personality.

given this general predisposition, i rake in friends like leaves in the woods at the start of autumn. i am generally known as a good guy with a knack for comedy. i've been told that i am "magaan kasama". people have described me as extremely gregarious and giving.

but regardless of these descriptions, i have one major flaw: i do not know how to keep friends. i don't shove them away. but unwittingly, i slowly, but most surely, walk away, and don't bring them with me. i have gone through different stages in my life, and each time, i have made very very good friends with a diverse group of people. and i have even had very very close friendships with specific people. but each time i move on, either to a different workplace, a different environment, a different school, a different passion, a different organization, most of these friends fade. they don't totally disappear, but they do become less conspicuous in my life. each time my universe revolves around something different, my old friends, regardless of how close i may have been with them, become other galaxies: existing, but far away.

now, my current set of friends consists mostly of mountaineers from AMCI. in a way, my getting involved in AMCI has expanded my world. but in entering this bigger room, i have had to step out of the smaller ones, and allowed the door to close behind me. i guess what i regret now most is that i am unable to find time to spend with my other cherished friends. i miss them a lot, and while i cannot say honestly that the feeling is mutual, i hope it is. i really really do want to renew ties with old friends: people i have met and who have made great contributions to the kind of person i have become. friends from elementary and high school, friends from college, artist friends, friends from law school, friends from kulê, friends in the debate team, friends i met in singapore, friends i met in my journeys, friends from sierra, friends whose intellect i admire, poet friends, friends i've met under suspicious and questionable circumstances, virtual friends.

i have no trouble making friends. that part is easy. i must learn, though, how to keep them.

random rumination number 5 - inspiration
one thing that i lack in my life right now is a solid source of inspiration. since after law school, i have not had any reason to do anything, or at least, my purpose has been fleeting and ever-changing. i am in dire need of a muse: something, someone, an idea, a goal or a mission. the problem is, i don't know. i have written in many entries in the past that i often feel empty, that what drives me seems to be something overly material. i work merely to get paid so i can address my personal caprices. it's just that, i have wandered off: i have tried pursuing what i thought was my calling. and i've failed. not just once.

i need to snap from this dreary, purposeless existence.

random rumination number 6 - hobbies
of course, mountaineering tops the list, and i've extolled its virtues many times in this blog. what else do i do?

i run and i exercise. i've never imagined it was something that i'd enjoy a lot. i've recently purchased my second pair of running shoes from new balance. and i think i'll be getting myself another pair soon.

i play badminton, with little success of course. my reflexes just aren't fast enough.

i am currently addicted to the game called sudoku. it is a logic puzzle involving numbers. i play it at least 10 times a day. i'm actually pretty good at it, and my average time is ranked in the upper 28% of a certain website. and it may be partially to blame for some of the headaches i suffered last week. so addicted am i with the game that i actually got myself an electronic version for a little more than a grand. it's much like the game & watch of the 80s. it isn't even backlit, but at least i have a mobile distraction that exercises my brain.

i love to dance. i miss doing jazz and hip-hop. i'd like to do capoeira.

i am a photography enthusiast. although lately, i've been very disappointed with my output. strangely, i've lost the patience for looking at small details. sure, people still say i take good pictures. but ever since i went digital, my photos have been forgettable. the type you send out to people via email, but don't bother to bring to the lab to have them printed. i think the volume of pictures i take has something to do with it. i tend less to be attached to pictures when there are too many of them. that's why i value the medium of film. more on this later.

i love to travel. if only there were a cheaper way to experience other cultures, to see other places, to experiment on exotic food, to hear a strange language.

i read. not as much as i should or used to, but it is still something i try to do. i sometimes think that i am more a bibliophile than a rabid reader, since i have more books on my shelf that i have not read entirely, than books that i've actually pored over from cover to cover.

i am drawn to gadgets. i've recently started collecting T3. i hope to get myself a macbook soon, if the temptation to get an MTB wears off.

i love to cook. actually, i like looking at cookbooks and imagining myself preparing a meal. i'm seriously considering taking up classes on pasta dishes.

i blog. but i used to have a written journal. until my last one was stolen along with a friend's car. i read my old journals and i often am embarrassed at myself.

i should finally decide to pursue a very specific collection. i used to have quite an extensive pin collection that i've neglected.
Sudoku addict
Wow! gusto ko rin niyan, saan mo nabili?Ü
Re: Sudoku addict
ay nako don't remind me. going to that place is pure torture. i wanted to buy the entire store! hobby shops are not for me. hiramin mo na lang yang sa akin. :D
let me give you a bit if advise since your my friend: make time with your other worlds. i have amci friends, i have diving friends and some of them from different groups, i have my regular barkada from 20 years back, i have my old college and high school friends and we even see each other once a month and we text regularly. its really up to you how you keep in touch with them. my tuesday dinners are with my bakada from way back. my thurs are for divng friends. my weekends are for everyone. but i make sure i stay in touch with a simple text.
gosh you make it sound so easy TB. i've tried to do that. but with my friends from elementary school, well, who knows where they are. my high school friends. more than half of them are nurses working abroad! college friends? a lot are teachers, some are artists, a few went with me to law school. the others are mostly technorats. friends from law school: good luck if you can get at least 2 to meet with you for dinner or a movie. busy making money i guess. but yeah: it's an honest sentiment. i really want to reconnect with them, and as i've told jenny, make the reconnection feel less awkward. meron naman kaming pinagsamahan.
ay naku...i know exactly how you feel..i too have a problem of keeping friends. its not that i burn bridges. pero everytime i venture into something new, i make a new set and tend to lose touch with the old ones. i have lost touch with my highschool friends. i have only 1 college friend left (although i try to keep in touch through our e-grp. thank God for egroups), i don't hear from or see any of my DTI friends anymore, my only real friends are my two friends from CRC/UAP who happen to also be AMCI members. Apart from the two, the only real friends i now consider are my AMCI friends, present company included (kunwari magkausap tayo in person hehe) and syempre the sweepers.

So i guess, everywhere i go, i collect friends but i don't necessarily keep them. siguro it has something to do with moving on...of course when you leave and go off somewhere different, its almost like you want to start off fresh and new. Kaya siguro we tend to suspend or freeze the past and concentrate on the present without realizing that while suspending the past, we're slowly but unintentionally letting go of it.

ay i making sense? hehe...basta i get you. i've been feeling like that for so long now. i'm beginning to think that maybe it's normal hehe..
yes, you are making a LOT of sense. i get you completely. it's not that i change friends. it's just that we lose touch of each other. you and i lived in an era when connecting with friends did not have the support of egroups, mobile phones, and internet. we lived at a time when PLDT's zero backlog was a big joke. so keeping in touch was really hard. now that it is possible, it almost seems awkward trying to "reconnect" with your old friends. yes, you've searched for their names in friendster and added them up to your list. but now, your worlds have changed and you seem to have outgrown the friendship. yes, it's a pity. i miss my old friends. they're about my age now. i wonder how many of us have married. hmmm...
Purposeless existence?
Tone somewhat reminds me of the closing line from the movie Alfie which goes like this . . .

"And I'm single. Unattached. Free as a bird.
I don't depend on nobody. Nobody depends on me.
My life's my own. But I don't have peace of mind.
And if you don't have that, you've got nothing.
So, what's the answer? That's what I keep asking myself.
What's it all about? You know what I mean?

Maybe your purpose is to write. As we enjoy reading your logs.
Re: Purposeless existence?
i wonder whether my writing will change the world. where is my narf? my sea nymph? my lady in the water?

thanks though. would you know how i could possibly make a killing (financially, that is) with my so-called talent? thanks. :D