So, what do you do?

Nobody gets what I do – or at least nobody over the age of 40. Whenever my parents, uncles, aunts and other relatives always ask me what I do or what my job is exactly, I can’t always give them a definite answer ’cause I can’t simplify it. One thing, though, that I’m sure about my job is that I’m into it.

Why do I like my job? It’s unlikely for a young professional to like their job, right?

Well, first off, I have flexible hours. I am not a morning person, I am a night owl in a world that wants everyone to operate like larks. So, I’m thankful that I can work till one in the morning and wake up at ten. My energy spikes at midnight can be utilized to do work.

Second, there’s not seniority. Sure, there are older people at our company but we treat each other equally. I can call 30 year-old workmates by their first name and newbies can call me by name – so not “Pinoy” of us.

Another reason is career growth. I always get told by my parents to switch jobs – go work for the government or a big corporation. I know they’re just looking out for me and they mean well, but I always give them a “NO”. I don’t want to work in a corporate setting and wait for years just to move up the management ladder. If I work hard and always do my best, I help can run two locations and that’s a big deal.

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I’m thankful that I have a job that challenges me everyday. Being one of the very few people running the back end operations of our company and sort-of managing one of our locations is no joke. Not a lot of companies would trust 21 year-olds with this kind of responsibility so I feel very lucky.

The future freaks me out (yes, that’s a MCS reference) but it also excites me. Here’s to being better and going bigger! #

Recap: 2016

This year has been a year of growing up – not so much physically, though. I’m only 21 which really is not old, considering the fact that a lot of people are already in their 50’s or 80’s, but I feel as though I’ve aged a lot over the course of 12 months. I guess time is just an illusion after all. Because no matter how many days we count or birthdays we have, growing up and being mature cannot be quantified. You may be 30 but you still act like a kid or 15 but already wiser and thinks of the future ahead.

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Anyways, here’s a look at my year. All of the music, books and films I consumed in the past year. All of the places and people that make up the great experiences I’ve had. All of the learnings and realizations (and “stuff” hahahaha Kylie Jenner).

Listened to:

  • Moose Blood’s dicography especially their 2016 release “Blush”
  • Mat Kerekes – Luna and the Wild, Blue Everything
  • Seahaven – Reverie Lagoon: Music is for Escapism
  • Pinegrove – Cardinal
  • Modern Baseball – Holy Ghost
  • State Champs – Around the World and Back
  • Sing Street’s official movie soundtrack
  • Begin Again official movie soundtrack
  • Submarine official movie soundtrack

Special mentions: (albums that I come back to when things get tough)

  • Real Friends – Put Yourself Back Together
  • The Wonder Years – The Greatest Generation

I’ve also come to like the pre-made playlists on Spotify so here are links to those that I come back to listen throughout the year:

Aside from my alternative scene choices, I’ve learned to like pop music. Some standouts are Hailee Steinfield’s Starving and Rock Bottom, Mike Posner’s I Took a Pill in Ibiza (the stripped-down version), and Little Mix’s singles. My K-Pop self has been on the down low this year so I only really listened to mid-2000’s group’s releases or come back to early SNSD songs.

I also have this Spotify playlist that I constantly update so if you’re really curious about what I’m currently listening to, just drop by here:

Watched

Deadpool, Captain America: Civil War, Suicide Squad, Moana, Don’t Breathe, almost every big movie released this year. I’m not a movie person, and definitely not a movie-goer but this year I’ve watched a lot of movies inside a cinema. This is totally due to the fact that we do movie team nights in our company.

I’ve also been making an effort to finish through my growing list of to-watch movies before it overwhelms me (I’ve listed a lot of movies and I think I’m not even halfway done). Some of the movies I ticked off my list are the best movies I’ve ever seen/ experienced. I liked Submarine and Moonrise Kingdom but honestly, Sing Street is just great. The light-heartedness of the movie, the soundtrack, the actors. That movie is one of the best for 2016.

(photos are not mine)

I also fell in love with the Korean drama Scarlet Heart: Ryeo. I love the story, the aesthetic and the characters in the series. Please do watch it (if you don’t do it voluntarily, I’ll bug you until you do).

Read

  • Falling into Place – Amy Zhang
  • The Trials of Apollo – Rick Riordan
  • Happy Again – Jennifer Smith
  • Spinster Trilogy – Holly Bourne
  • The Lover’s Dictionary – David Levithan
  • Anatomy of a Misfit – Andrea Portes
  • Girl Against the Universe – Paula Stokes
  • The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho
  • Thirty-eight Series – Len Webster
  • November 9 – Colleen Hoover
  • Summer Days and Summer Nights – Stephanie Perkins, et. al.
  • Crazy Rich Asians – Kevin Kwan (so funny!)

I’ve mostly read YA and self-help/ learning books. Yes, I know they are not really the “classics” or “greatest literary pieces of all time” but I enjoy most of the books I’ve read. Also, I FINALLY got a copy of Charles Bukowski’s You Get so Alone Sometimes… book for my birthday. Got it in Davao, Fully Booked Abreeza on my birthday week. Yay!

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One standout that I recommend from the young adult genre is Holly Bourne’s Spinster Trilogy: Am I Normal Yet?, How Hard Can Love Be?, and What’s a Girl Got To Do?. I don’t want to spoil you guys so I’ll move on to the other parts of this post before I start typing out specifics about the books. Read and know for yourself! 🙂

I’ve not really finished a lot of self-help books. I’m halfway done with the New One Minute Manager so that would be the first one I’ll finish reading from cover to cover.

Places with people

I can honestly say that this year is the year I went to a lot of places and be friends with new faces. I got a new set of people in my life, “work friends” and honestly, all of them are good company.

  • Osmeña Peak, Dalaguete
  • UP Diliman – tour around campus with Dara
  • SM North EDSA Skydome, Manila – Neck Deep concert in the PH with Wes
  • Sumilon Island – Holy Week trip with tita Jossan and Gegen
  • Tubigon/ Bohol – reunion with the fam on Mother’s side
  • Davao City – work roadtrip
  • Samal Island
  • La Chevrerie Resort and Spa, Batangas – EQ Ph bootcamp
  • Bantayan Island – finally visited it after being in Cebu for 5 years!
  • Shercon Resort and Ecology Park, Batangas – EQ Ph Christmas Party!

Highlights

This year, I got to experience many things but some experiences are better than others. These are the adventures I’ve had that stayed with me and made 2016 a great year.

NECK DEEP concert in the Philippines. Come on, if you know me, you’d expect this already. This is the first legit concert I’ve been to and it’s honestly one of the best things that happened in my existence. I got to see one of my favorite bands perform their songs and it was there that I realized that watching from a screen was nothing compared to seeing them live. I even got to meet the band (minus Fil) up close and give West a locally-made bracelet. Still gives me the feels, this experience.

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Getting promoted. I’ve never worked so hard in my entire “adult life” than during this time and seeing it pay off was fulfilling. It made all the body aches and mental challenges go away for a long time.

Asian History class trip. I’ve been out of the university for almost a year now. Luckily, the history class by Pep was opening slots for non-students to join in the tour so I grabbed one. Learning once again about Asian religions and their philosophies made me appreciate the diversity of our region.

Chicken Pox. The disease that I have dreaded to catch had finally come to pay his visit. I can say that I was disappointed (which really, I shouldn’t be) because I feel like I did not get the entire spectacle. I was curious since most of the stories I heard about people getting chicken pox paint a gloomy picture – constant itching, fever, loss of appetite, etc. I got close to none of those, not so much itching (only the first two or three days) and that was it. It sucked that I couldn’t eat chicken and recipes with it as an ingredient, though.

One day tour of Cebu city. I did this as a treat to one of my work friends. Stephen and I went to the Taoist temple in Lahug, Museo Sugbu and Magellan’s Cross before going to work the p.m. shift. It was a hot day and we were both sweaty from all the jeepney rides and walking but for me, the experience was one that I have always wanted to do so I was happy to tick that off my bucket list.

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Sugbu Mercado and introvert times. The times I go to the weekly Sugbu Mercado is always with friends and I do love their company. Food, music and friends always make for a good time. On the other hand, my introvert self is always in need of some alone time to recover energy and those times spent alone in coffee shops or Jelly Citea are so worth it.

EQ Ph ganaps: Bootcamp and Year-end Party. Work events are always great. The company always manages to incorporate business with fun. I get to learn new things and reinforce old learnings to be better. Also, just seeing and interacting with new and old work friends is a blast.

 

 

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Honestly, I’m still an in-betweener. I believe that I have more growing up to do and XP points to earn before I become a full-fledged adult; but I also believe that those days of throwing emotional tantrums out of nowhere, answering my parents in a “pilosopo” way, etc. are almost behind me.

Adulting is hard. You need to learn life skills AND apply them. Don’t be afraid to do it and always expect to make mistakes. I always believe that it’s better to make mistakes early on in the journey so that when you encounter them again, you already know what to do.

 

Issues: The desire to be white

It saddens me to think that society (or at least, the Philippine society) is so obsessed with having that white skin. Pills, tablets, whitening soap, scrubs and whatever shit people do or use to have white skin are all over the Internet and supermarkets. What are you trying to prove or achieve? That being white is better than being of color?

Even worse, teenagers are pressured to get that white glowing skin because their celebrity idols said so in some TV advertisement. What happened to teaching kids to be confident in their own skin?

An old nursery song I learned in Sunday school may remind adults and kids that skin color is not that important.

Jesus loves the little children,
All the children of the world.
Brown and yellow,
Black and white,
They are precious in his sight.

Jesus loves the little children of the world.

Entry: July 14, 2015

As of 17:55, I have been sitting in someone else’s cot for about 20 minutes now. I was bored and didn’t want to keep looking at the people in the ship’s balcony so I decided to write (also, that Muslim lady was looking at me badly for 2 incidents now). And now I don’t know what to write about.

My phone is charging so I cannot leave it here. It’s still at 55% and 1 hour and 24 minutes before it’s fully charged.

Here are some observations (due to the lack of subject matter to write about):

  • I was not a weirdo for taking a selfie and some Instagram-worthy photos. Other people are now at the balcony taking selfies even when there are a lot of people around.
  • A lot of people are eating at this hour. I guess I should too because it’s hard to eat outside when the ship’s moving. But I’m still full from the spaghetti earlier so hmmm… guess we’ll see when I will get hungry.
  • I find that my goal to talk to at least one stranger will be difficult to achieve because:
    1. I am incapable of talking to strangers casually
    2. Some, well, the people that are near me, are scary… stranger danger!
    3. I don’t want to seem like a weirdo/ creep.
  • It’s both scary and freeing to travel without a companion.

2015 Recap

Year 2015 was full of transitions and changes. I think it deserves a recap so I don’t forget about the important things, events, people and accomplishments that happened over the entire year.

Things I am thankful for:

Another year in added to my existence

The world not ending

GOD who has always been there for me

My family, friends and awesome acquaintances

UP and En Banc

The Wonder Years and the other bands that I listen to

Not-so-secret crush

Graduating on time

A very chill yet “naning” thesis partner (God bless Dara’s soul)

Tita Jossan and her family

Kinect/ Youtube channels/ Internet

Team Logistics

#AchievementUnlocked

THESIS! – This was one of the things that really kept on running through my mind during the first half of the year. I remember self-diagnosing myself as “depressed” during the last semester of college because of thesis work. Timeouts were really important to me because they kept me sane during these times. After everything, seeing the hardbound copies of our research definitely made me feel triumphant and proud (maybe this is how pregnant women feel after seeing their baby for the first time).

Riding the Ceres bus (day and night trips) to Cebu North – This may seem like nothing to other people but to me it’s an achievement. One, me and Dara (thesis buddy) are not from Cebu so we have no fucking clue how to do this with only the two of us travelling. Two, we did not get lost and encountered dangers during these trips.

Booking an online flight for myself – People are already doing this, some of these people are younger than me! I felt like I did a little growing up when I successfully booked two flights for myself by myself. J

Buying a concert ticket – same as above

Going to a club/ bar – because I am over 18 for 2 years already, I felt like it was time

Getting drunk/ drinking – same as above

 

Highlights:

Handlettering/ using watercolour – During college, lots of my doodles were words in different fonts or writing styles so after I graduated college I had plenty of time to work on this hobby. I really hated using watercolour before but now I have developed a love for the medium. Looking at Abbey Sy as my inspiration definitely helped because she sends so much positive and good vibes. I think I’m am getting better (positivity!).

College graduation & unemployment – I lumped these two together because they happened chronologically. Graduating from college IS a huge accomplishment, especially in the Philippine society. Filipinos see the college diploma as a ticket to bigger things and opportunities and yes, it is. However, after finally transferring my Sablay from my right shoulder to my left and marching to receive my diploma, I took some time off. I did not mean to be unemployed; it’s just that I felt I need to take a break after four years of exhaustion. Now, I kind of regret that timeout, but not really. I think it did me good.

Volunteer work – APEC 2015 Cebu Organizing Committee – The APEC Summit 2015 was one of the biggest things that happened in our country last year and having a small participation in it was super cool. Plus, I met fun people and got to sleep/eat/enjoy at the finest hotels in Cebu. I also learned what it was like to be in a (sort-of) working environment where there was a lot of adjusting – working with strangers (at first), dealing with persons in authority, etc.

Places I visited:

Funtastic Island, Medellin

Oslob, Cebu – Whale Shark watching, Tumalog Falls

Sumilon Island

Bogo, Cebu

Palompon/ Villaba, Leyte

Cebu Hotels – Marriot, Waterfront Lahug, Movenpick, Radisson Blue, Shangri-La Mactan

Artists/ Albums I listened to:

Modern Baseball

Turnover – Peripheral Vision

Citizen

Turnover/Citizen Split

As It Is – Concrete, Dial Tones (LSS)

5SOS

Brand New – Deja Entendu

Set Your Goals – Burning at Both Ends

Handguns

Ramshackle Glory

Seaway

Neck Deep

Transit

Man Overboard

Somos

All Time Low

Hit the Lights

Homesafe

Knuckle Puck

Taylor Swift

Movies:

Star Wars Original Trilogy

Harry Potter movies

Avengers: Age of Ultron

Guardians of the Galaxy

Jurassic World

The Hobbit 3

College required films

TV Series-es I started watching:

  • Game of Thrones
  • Mr. Robot
  • Daredevil

(lists are subject to change, stuff may be added later next year)

 

“Life is the climb but the view is great”.

The past year had been a journey through a mountain range – climb up, reach the peak, enjoy the view, go downhill, repeat. There were plenty of problems and things that seemed insurmountable during 2015 which made me want to give up and stay on the ground. However, I pulled myself together and continued the journey from one mountain to another until I conquered the last one (hopefully, I did).