Friday, January 16, 2009

The man with the face of heaven

I used to think neighbors come to my house only because they need something from me.

Indeed, they do.

For the past three years, neighbors have been coming and going out of our house. But they do not come here to borrow or beg for money; neither to borrow carpentry or garden tools; nor to have someone listen to and help them solve their domestic or international problems. They come here for only one reason. They come to see me. No, let me correct that. They come her to see my face.

No, I do not have a face shattered by bazoka. I was not hit by posporous gas Israilites rain on the suspected Hamas militants in Gaza. I have no scar in the form of letter Z on my forehead. I am just another ordinary guy with an extraordinary look.

Of course, you must be demanding for a discription. Sorry, you will never have it. Otherwise, even the Muslim militants who kidnapped the Red Cross volunteers will also kidnap me thinking I have millions simply because I have so much fan from around the world.

To see a hunk (translation: handsome and sexy guy), my neighbors need to either stroll the commercial capital of Manila (Makati), the working district of Pasig (Ortigas), or they may stroll the malls (Sy's Mall, Ayala's Mall, Gokongwei's Mall, et al). To get there, they need to have money for transportation, except the wealthy who have their own sedans. Aside from that, they also need to have their pocket money. People do get hungry not just for beautiful things or human beings to look at; they get hungry for the basic reason that they need food--don't you know that?

The price of food in the places mentioned is no joke. You must have at least a hundred pesos to eat a decent and full meal in a fastfood chain, two hundred in food courts, or at least fifty pesos to buy food in the side walk. But who buys food from the sidewalks when you are inside the mall?

Instead, they come to my house. In here, they have all they want: we serve them merienda, one or two glasses of water--or if the visitor is a baby or a small child, we serve him or her a glass of luke warm milk. Which means, when they come to my house they do not have to spend anything for food.

But there are drinks we avoid serving for obvious reasons: like wine, beer and other alcoholic drinks. We reserve those drinks for the most sane of my fans.

So what do those peole do in your house, you may ask. The truth is, I do not do anything nor do I need to say a word. My neighbors say nothing also! Neighter do they move when I am with them. They just sit there prostrate looking at me. If you look at their eyes its safe to assume they are somewhere else in a beautiful garden--surely not the memorial garden--strolling while holding my hand.

So that the merienda we serve will not be left untouched, we do a little trick to catch their attention and to remind them to stop fantasizing about me instead of spending time with me.

To do that, I need to kiss them. And, just like a flash of light from an instrument used my Will Smith in the movie Men in Black, they shake their head and descend from heaven to earth, in our sala.

The humility of these people is stunning. Where can you find neighbors who are willing to accept and be subjected to harsh criticism for believing almost to a point of insanity that their neighbor has the face of a god? Nowhere else. Only in my place.

You might have noticed I have been trying to avoid revealing my location. I am sure you understand why. I am sure you have heard about me and been looking for my location for a very long time. I am sorry I cannot reveal my place to you. I am glad my neighbors respect a little of what is left of my privacy, and I was able to convinced them not to put up a fan website for me, the same way Chief State Prosecutor Jovencito Zuño convinced the Prosecutors from Central Luzon from staging a mass leave next week. You heard of that? The prosecutors got insulted because Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) officials accused them of taking bribes for the release of Richard Brodett, Jorge Joseph and Joseph Tecson more popularly known as The Alabang Boys.

Anyway, going back to what we were talking about: you may be curious how do I let these people go. Or how do their visits end. Well, I just tell them I have to go write some articles so that I can earn my living. Amusingly, they do not delay me for another second. They tell me they understand the economy is hard and every one of us needs to have some source of income.

Of course, they will be sad every time I say good bye. They just convince and remind themselves that they can go back every day to look at me and adore my face.

Talk about vision. These same people have vision that is why they do not resort to acts of dispair. They believe in their hearts that there will always be tomorrow, another day to celebrate by seeing the face they believe is the face of heaven.

If they were just some other ordinary men and women, before you could ever say good bye they would pull one of your arms close to them and beg you not to leave them. How selfish! But no, my neighbors are extraordinary people. Poverty, hunger and distress could not crush their spirit. Not once were they ever hopeless. All these they owe to one man. The man who has the face of heaven.

Too bad for you who cannot see the face of heaven.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Not easy having a brilliant mind

A dumb's mind is stocked inside his skull. No matter how hard his mind moves it will not get anywhere because it is like a car stocked in the mud. No amount of will power can make that mind escape the prison of his skull (where his hair grow and sometimes don't, his nose, two eyes, two ears, and a mouth are located), like no amount of horse power can kick a car off the mud where it stocked.

But let me tell you about my mind. My mind works this way: when I see a paper for example, may it be in a newspaper, magazine or a book, I do not get excited because I have something to tear, or burn. And if I live in a city, I have something to sell, or if I live in the mountains, I have something to clean my butt with. I am tired--yes TIRED!--because, when I see a piece of paper I remember the Chinese who not only invented the paper, but also the first printing machine, the gun powder and lastly, the the compass. Not only that! I would start to imagine how the Chinese was able to think about the process for making paper, what were the materials his first experimented with; how he discovered the right material and the perfect (as the technology of that time would permit) process to make the paper; what were his expressions when he found out--or did he find out?--that he invented paper; did he also shout "Eurica!" as the legend says about Archimedes when he discovered a way to measure the amount of gold in a king's crown; where was he when this happened; who was with him--was it his wife? If it was his wife, which wife--the first, second, third, forth, fifth, sixth, seventh, or eight? Was his wife, whichever was it/them, with a son, a daughter, grandson, granddaughter?

Was he able to sleep on the first night? Did he also wake up in the middle of the night to check on his invention? Was there a moon that night? If there was a moon, did he light his cigarette, smiled and blew smoke to the moon? or did he ever smoke?

How was his life affected by his invention? Did he become richer? was he acknoledged by the Emperror and given another wife? Did the Chinese people placed a wreathe on his head?

When he died was he placed in a coffin made of paper? When he was alive, did he use tissue paper?

Repeat all those questions to the other three inventions, and search for the answers in the encyclopedia or the internet. Can you handle that?

There are other times my mind also works this way: I see a firefly and I imagine the the chemical called Luciferin, produced by its body, inter-act with the oxygen in the atmosphere to produce the glow; I see a bat and I imagine seringes filled with the chemical called Draculin extracted from the bat's saliva and injected to a heart attack patient to prevent his blood from clutting, and for the patient to survive;

Dogs were domesticated before cats; cats do not have nine lives;

The most nutritious food is the avocado;

The nearest star is called Proxima Centauri, discovered in 1915; the largest is Sharon Coneta.

Earth is not round, and neither is your head.

There is an earthquake in the sea as well as in the land. And shiver is the name of the earthquake in the body when it is sick with fever.

All these knowledge come to me effortlessly, without me doing anything. My mind sour in the sky of ideas and it is not stocked inside the mud in my skull.

Admittedly, it is not easy sometimes I wish I were some one else--Einstein maybe.