Ben

Apparently, I invest more emotionally in what I write than in some people in my life. One of my friends said that I am very emotional, but only in writing. People sympathize with some of the things I write because I am able to explain it clearly, but it’s been pointed out to me that I am nowhere near clear or emotional in person as I am in paper. She told me that there is a big chance I will grow old alone if I don’t start connecting with people. And by people, of course she meant men.

But I’ve never felt the sense of urgency in being in a relationship, even at 26. Many of our friends are already married, others are expecting babies, and I’m more concerned about Doctor Who than about who I’m going to end up with, if ever I do end up with someone.

But seriously, I’m not a robot. If I could meet someone as adorable as Benedict Cumberbatch, who knows T.S. Eliot and John Keats poems by heart, and whose favorite book is also Catcher in the Rye but isn’t the personification of the neurotic Holden Caulfield, I’d date the hell out of that guy. That is, if he also wanted to date me. See, I’ve felt very strongly about different people. Sometimes I told them, sometimes I didn’t. But I’ve always written how strongly I’ve felt about them. Nonetheless, feelings fade, minds change, and at the end of the day, what’s left are words written by a once-smitten girl.

My friend keeps telling me to be more proactive in establishing healthy relationships. Evidently, a long distance relationship over Facebook chat, with a friend, is neither healthy nor a relationship. She says actions speak louder than words, but I am not a woman of action. I am a woman of words. Writing is my weapon, an escape, perhaps an Invisibility Cloak. People may look at me and decide that there isn’t enough excitement going on in my life and that I’m dull as a brick, and maybe that’s true on some level. But in my mind I am always battling with something, whether fictional or not. I guess that’s the problem with being a writer. And I don’t mean writer as a type of self-important, know-it-all, prick that I know others are when they refer to themselves as being writers. When I say writer, I only mean someone who is always looking for a story and how to say it properly.

I may need to start speaking up soon about how I feel. But for now, writing about it should suffice. Shouldn’t it?

A Goddamn Pleasure

It’s pretty fucking simple. You should be with me. All the love songs in the world couldn’t even begin to describe how much I fucking adore you. And I fucking adore you. With all my messed up shit self and the wickedly weird shit I’ve got going on. How do you wake up each fucking day and think that you’re not good enough? You’re more than enough. Your goddamn beauty astounds the shit out of me. I’ll go through hell and back just to be able to look you in the eyes and tell you that you’re beautiful. You don’t even have to hear it. You don’t even have to know I’m fucking there. I just need to be near you and tell you how goddamn adorable you are when you think nobody sees you; the way you cross your legs and tuck a pencil in your ear. It fucking blows my mind. Goddamnit. You’re so perfect, it’s fucking annoying already. No one should be that fucking perfect.

But there you are. There you fucking are. In your goddamn perfect self being amazing as ever without so much as a smile, and you still think that you have to do anything other than exist to melt my heart. I’m telling you, it really is goddamn simple. If you were a font, you’d be fucking bold, because you stand out from everything else. If you were a locked drawer, you’d stay that way if it were up to me because no one would deserve the fucking key and I’ll be the only one who knows what’s really inside you. If you were a book, I’d fucking rip the last pages so that your story won’t end, and I can spend forever figuring you out. And that would be a goddamn pleasure.

So if it really were up to me, you’d be here or I’d be there. In any case, we’d be at the same place at the same time and the rest of the world could go fuck itself.

City Fiction

This is the first time I wrote flash fiction this short. This particular batch I wrote is for the recently held Fiction Writing Masterclass at Ayala Museum. I found it very challenging because the limit was 100 words, but also fun because it forces you to rethink your words a thousand times over to cut down the length but still stay sensible. I submitted three entries, but only the first one was chosen to be discussed at the masterclass. At the end, though, I wasn’t able to attend. But it was interesting that the judges chose the saddest story among the three. I wonder if that says something about me as a writer? What do you think?

The Morning After

The truth is, I had known long before I found out. Unsurprisingly this morning, everything seemed amiss. I do love this place, though.

The rickety bridge past 14th street where we used to drink morning coffees. The hump along Portobello Road that you always forget to watch out for. The beautiful unbalance between high-rise buildings and centuries-old establishments. I will miss them all.

And I will miss you, I think rather bitterly, as I drive along the city we called ours, leaving the all-too familiar ache, ignoring the humps, going straight for the bridge and onto the welcoming end.

Under My Umbrella

God must really love me, I considered silently, while you stood beside me under my umbrella in the pouring rain. The pavement seemed to glitter as the yellow street lights shone on tiny puddles. It felt like the scene in Singing in the Rain right after Debbie Reynolds kissed Gene Kelly. But even without the kiss, it was a glorious feeling.

“Thanks for the umbrella,” you said, smiling at me before getting in the bus. “See you at work tomorrow!”

Meanwhile, I just stood there, unable to speak. Tomorrow, I thought with utter resolve, I will absolutely ask you out.

Central Perk

He adjusted himself in the corner of the coffee shop where he sat, almost willing himself to nothingness. Never has a simple introduction been this mortifying.

He tried his hardest to look her in the eye, but couldn’t, lest he blushes uncontrollably; attempted to stand up and just approach her, but she kept popping up out of nowhere, not giving him time to prepare. Someday, he thought.

She watched him closely, hoping he would notice her. She smiled at him, passed by his seat more than she needed, even deliberately dropped her pen near his table. Nothing. Someday, she sighed.