Yellow Paperclip with Bright Purple Spots

July 7th, 2007 § 10

A few weeks ago, I posted about our paperclip project, asking you, my dear readers, what you think about paperclips. A week later, I blogged about where that paperclip project brought me.

I never really got around to disclosing how our little paperclip quest came to be. It was merely a dare: I blog, he writes a song. (And yep, we were fully aware that there’s something unfair about that dare, LOL.) Consequently, the helpless random object we thought about was, yup, you got it, a paperclip. The rest was history. Anyway, you can navigate over to that post again to listen to the song my friend, David, made ;)

On another note, look what I found.

I wasn’t really looking for it but spending time in Powerbooks last night unintentionally brought me to the children’s section, and lead me to this.

Yellow Paperclip with Bright Purple Spots
Yellow Paperclip with Bright Purple Spots by Nikki Dy-Liacco

I’m excited to start my next great adventure.
Where will you take me?

I’ve read the paperclip story online already (thanks to Jun for pointing me to that direction), but I knew I just had to get myself a copy. For only 65 pesos, I got myself a keepsake. I love it! ♥

Simple joys, that’s what this is about, definitely. :)

Meanwhile, Lots of blogging to do. Up next this weekend, my date with them lovely ladies, and something about the latest gaming thing in the net today. ;)

Edit. Miss Nikki Dy-Liacco just gave us a heads up on her blog, which you can view here. Wee. We’re famous. LOL. :P She’s right, what’s more interesting here is the simple truth that worlds continue to collide. Yup. I couldn’t agree more.

You Didn't Have to Know

July 4th, 2007 Comments Off on You Didn't Have to Know

I’m stressed. (Ok, Ganns, you got that one right.) And I’m hurting. And it’s sad that sometimes, the very thing that used to unload your stress, or the very thing that protects you from pain, becomes The main source of pain.

I’ve tried a lot of ways to deal with pain, trust me. I’ve done drinking (ain’t gona happen again), wasting away money over unnecessary shopping, wallowing in depression and ranting about it over coffee with girlfriends, getting myself overly preoccupied with work, feasting on carbs and junkfood over some chickflick marathon.. you get the picture. In the long run, however, I’ve learned that nothing really cures pain more than this: to be still, be acquainted with that deep longing inside, and know, in spite not understanding, in spite not having a full grasp of the picture, that He is God.

It’s not the easiest road to take. Sometimes you wish there’s some medicine that you just have to take and all the pain will simply go away. Sometimes you feel that it’s less painful to be distracted with other things, than trust a God you can’t see or understand. But a time just comes when you know there’s no point concealing it, no point pretending you’re okay when you’re not.

This afternoon, I faced pain head on, no turning back. It wasn’t easy, opening up wounds that never did mend, allowing frustration to sink in, and acknowledging the reality that there are things that just.. can’t be. And it hurts big time. It involves a lot of crying, and a lot of shouting inside an empty apartment, and a lot of questioning if God hears.

For the first time in a long while, I wanted something so bad and I know I couldn’t have it.

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Paper Clips Brought Me to You

June 27th, 2007 § 16

Paper ClipYou know how some people collect paper clips they find lying around? I seriously tried it. I walked around the mall, along Ortigas Center, and all the way back home just to get one (just one!!) paper clip sighting so I have something to say about my paper clip experience (or, now, the lack thereof).

And I kind of made it a point to go out of the office as I didn’t want to consider it a valid place to have an extraordinary paper clip encounter. You see, I have a box of paper clips on my drawer, some on my folders, a couple hanging by my cork board, and I’m sure there’s a pink one somewhere in Camille‘s jungle of a desk too — in short, one is more likely to see a paper clip lying around in an office than not. I wonder how Markku and Nikki just find paper clips lying around — along the side of the road, in a park bench, etc? It’s even more interesting how Nikki finds one all the time, anywhere she goes! (Gaah. Maybe if I stop trying, if I stop looking, I’ll find one. When that happens, I’ll let you guys know.)

Amazingly, albeit my failure to find a wandering paper clip, this experience has virtually brought me to places, and people, and ideas (and dreams) I never thought possible. One thing that surfaced in this paper clip project is that, what paper clips are for different people has gone beyond what they were originally made for and what their very name implies (you know, to clip papers together). Simply put, paper clips have become more than just, well, paper clips. There’s the manly habit of using paper clips as tooth pick, cotton buds, or something to pick your nose with (come on guys, couldn’t you be any more disgusting? LOL). There’s the rare fashion of using paper clips to adorn the hair. There’s the usual OC method of organizing files with color-coded paper clips.

And then there are those whose lives were changed because of one paper clip. There’s this guy who started with one red paper clip, which he traded until he ended with a house in Canada. And there’s this Filipina who wrote a story about a yellow paper clip with bright purple spots, which ended being published, and eventually became an award-winning children’s story book.

Paper clips mean a lot of things to a lot of people. And if we would spread our imagination, there’s more to paper clips than meets the eye.

Prior to this, I didn’t have any extraordinary paper clip experience. I don’t collect paper clips like Nikki or Markku. I don’t have a bad childhood memory that has to do with paper clips like Mikey or Ade. I don’t know how to make hearts out of them like Tina. I do remember that Maid in Manhattan movie and the little paper clip moment the little kid and the man had, but unlike Mae, I never once tried if it would work for me. And I definitely WON’T use paper clips for the purpose of personal hygiene, ok, TJ and Jake? (You have jobs! Buy cotton buds will you?!)

Perhaps I just didn’t have any reason to sensationalize what paper clips are for until now.

It’s true what they say.. there’s always something extraordinary about the ordinary, in the same way you find beauty in the most trivial of things. You ignore the fact that you share the world with billions of paper clips, until this one point in your life when it created for you a way to reconnect with an old friend. Which in turn became an excuse to connect with all sorts of people: People who use paper clips to take wax off their ears. People who have traumatic experiences with paper clips. People who collect paper clips, and use them to define moments.

Now, I have every reason to see paper clips in a different light. This could be it, my paper clip story preserved in a blog forever. It may not be as grand as Nikki’s, or Oneredpaperclip’s, but who knows, this could be, for me, the beginning of something else. I’m excited to find out.

Hey David, your turn. ;)

Here’s more link love to the rest of you who commented and shared their thoughts on paper clips: ♥Joni♥, Jun, Jayvee, Rob, Romz. Merci. ♥

Edit. A bit too late but here’s the challenge: I blog about it, he makes a song. (I know there’s something not fair about that, LOL.) For what it’s worth, he “won” the dare because I missed deadline, but really now, I’m confused. (Why did you win again? We both missed deadline, didn’t we?) Anyway. Here’s his song which you can also find here.

And think when trials come
Like heavy weights they press you down
At times it seems it never ends
Just bend along and change again
to gather all life’s sheets again
And remember there is strength in you inside
Like paperclips we hold life’s one big bind
One big bind.

Paperclips by David Oyos © July 2007

Missing Dad on Fathers' Day

June 18th, 2007 § 32

I dreaded Fathers’ Day to come. I was scared to find out how I was going to feel being father-less in an occasion such as this for the first time. So let me tell you how my celebration of Fathers Day went.

In church, I’ve always been the designated person to do audio-visual presentations, so by default, I was tasked to make one for Fathers’ Day (which was shown in church yesterday). I hesitated at first, jokingly said “why would I? I don’t have a Dad!“, but decided to do it because I know that that’s what Daddy would have wanted me to do. Besides, SBC dads have always been like second fathers to me. It was a privilege doing something to honor them.

For obvious reasons, I cried doing the AVP Saturday night. And while it was being shown during the worship service, I cried watching it even though I’ve seen it over a dozen times already. I cried thinking about Dad, and how incomplete the occasion was without him. I cried thinking about how different things would have been if he was still around — he would have given me a big hug after the AVP was shown, told me something like, “Gawa mo ba yun, nak? Ang galing talaga ng anak ko! Kanino ka ba nagmana?” (even though the AVP was nothing spectacular). I cried seeing some of his pictures being flashed on the screen, and having people come up to me to tell me how great a person and a father Daddy was. I cried while Pastor Lito was praying for them fathers, thinking that it would have been Daddy doing that special fathers’ day prayer. I cried playing the keyboard up front, and seeing the monobloc chair where Daddy always sat, empty since he died, as if no one wants to occupy it because of an unspoken agreement that the seat was supposedly Dad’s.

As the worship service came to a close, I hugged my Mom and my brother, and while we jokingly greeted each other, “Happy Father-less Day to us”, we know, and we need not say it, that we have a lot of reasons to celebrate Fathers’ Day. Specifically this reason: God has blessed us with a great Daddy, and even though he’s now gone, we still have The Great Father in heaven, the same one who’s keeping the whole universe together, who holds our lives in His hands. For us, that’s more than enough.

As I said, I’ve learned that crying does not change the situation, but simply a release so that one has more room to fill with strength to cope, and to move on — at least that’s how it has worked for me. Come to think of it, no occasion will ever be the same again. There will always be that empty seat in Christmasses, and birthdays, and anniversaries, to come. As Miss Noemi always puts it, I’m entering my “new normal”. This is how it’s always gonna be from now on, and I need not be sad about it. We will always miss Dad, but there will always be that unexplainable joy that comes with knowing that even though he’s not here with us anymore, his memory lives on whatever happens and wherever we go.

I told my Dad I want this song, Butterfly Kisses, played on my wedding day (fine, if there’d be any, that is). We even practiced dancing to this one already, one Saturday afternoon in his church office, only we ended up banging our heads ala Beatles’ style, dancing variations of cha-cha (my Dad sucks at dancing hehe), and laughing throughout the music. *sigh* I miss him.

But at least I can always play this song and be remembered of that afternoon. :) And at least I can always close my eyes, think of that dream wedding, and picture Daddy there, dancing with me for the last time before he gives me away.

Happy Fathers’ Day, Daddy. I am who I am now because of how you and Mom raised us up and how you lived your lives. I love you and I thank God for you.

And to all the fathers out there, Happy Fathers Day! And to all the daughters, and Daddy’s little girls out there, this song, that my Dad and I would have danced together with on my wedding night, is for you. Listen away. :)

Audio: Butterfly Kisses by Bob Carlisle. Lyrics after the jump.

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I’m a Writer, Really

June 10th, 2007 § 17

At this point, I’m left without a choice but to accept that I am a writer. Coz sometimes, I wonder.. if I’m not a writer, then what am I? If I’m not going to write, what else am I to do? If I can’t be good at writing, where else can I be good at?

It actually takes a lot of courage to admit these things to myself (which I have to do every single day by the way), much more to disclose these thoughts to an audience that includes professional writers and bloggers around the world who are brilliant at what they do.

I am what most people would call a jack of all trades, master of none. In wikipedia, this means

A person who is passably competent with many skills but is not outstandingly brilliant with any one particular skill.

Let me explain further.

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Year 24, Week 1

May 26th, 2007 § 10

My first week as a 24 year old passed by in a breeze, leaving me with a lot of things to be thankful for, and knowing that inspite of missing my Dad more than ever, there’s no better way I could have celebrated my birthday. After all, you only get to turn 24 once. Then again, fine, whatever number you put in that sentence still applies anyway. Hehe.

Last year, when I turned 23, I remember blogging about some of the reasons why I was glad I was turning 23. Now, I feel as if there’s a big leap somewhere between years 23 and 24. Suddenly, you feel old. Titos and Titas would come up to you and say, “I got married that age!” College people from church would ask you how old you are and when you tell them you’re 24, they would stare blankly at you, pause for a few moments, and say, “uhm, hindi nga Ate?”. So yeah people. I’m 24! Bring it on!

At first glance, there’s really not much of a difference — I’m still the same Riz, with the same surname (lol), and the same height, and the same God holding my life together. Still the same daddy’s girl who loves hugging people (fine, not ALL people), whose wardrobe’s 60% pink, who dreams of going to Oz, and of a happily ever after.

But looking deeper, I know that I’m a very different person from how I was a year ago. For one, I’m one year away from turning 25 (que horror!), and a whole year of drama was added to my life — defining moments, new set of people, new job (which is not so new anymore), new opportunities, bigger responsibilities. Twentyfour years made me this, and I’m glad. :) I just hope that when people look at my life now, they’d appreciate what they see — “some bruises here and there”, but still going, still thriving, still trying (and hoping) to make a difference one day at a time.

On a lighter note, a few interesting things happened this week: I had (1) an intimate birthday celebration at Fontana; (2) a lot of sweet surprises when I came back to work, day after my birthday; (3) a date with an agnostic (whose identity I shall keep anonymous as requested hehe); (4) a pseudo-date with my highschool best friend; (5) a get-together with three of my most favorite people in college, Jam, Drew, & Iking; (6) pizza party (photos to follow) with my most favorite people in the world (I know, I’m soo full of superlatives lately); (7) a new guitar (!!!) I named “Jar”, which I got as a birthday gift *swoon* and..

Click Happy (7) Tadaaah! A new addition to my growing list of cyber estates. ;)

So to wrap up my week-long birthday bonanza, I invite you to hop to CLICK HAPPY, my pseudo-photoblog (not really photojournalistic but simply a space to store photos that speak a thousand words, or something like that), partly inspired by Liz‘s Whats and Woots, but mostly my way of freezing memories when I’m not in the mood to be wordy. ;)

So go go go. And know more about those sweet surprises, and Jar, there. ;)

Love Letter

May 21st, 2007 § 21

Dear Daddy,

Hi! I didn’t cry today! Proud of me? :) Er, except for that one time when Ninong Dave prayed over lunch, and, well, I’m sure you heard his prayer (thanking God for another year, and for all those people He brought into my life, and all the blessings, and well, the rest I won’t blog anymore because they’re un-bloggable and of course you already know them hehe). Did you see how all of us were giggling while we prayed? Was God laughing too when He was listening to us? :D So okay, I cried a bit there. But I don’t think that should even be considered as “crying” because I was just teary-eyed. You saw how I was able to hold the tears back and dry my eyes before everyone else opened theirs? Pretty clever huh. :)

I miss you, Daddy, today most especially. This morning, I woke up and found my mobile blinking with 27 text messages, waiting to be opened. 27, Daddy, 27!! You see how many people remembered? Not counting pa those who texted before I fell sleep the night before, and those who texted and called during the day! I am soo loved. But as I went through the texts and replied to each of them one after the other, I couldn’t help but wish I received a text message from you too. I can imagine it now. It would just be the usual, and you’d still be sending it even though you were just in the other room, or even when you already personally greeted me. It would simply say “hapy bday nak! luv u!“. But it would mean the world to me.

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I Love You, Daddy

April 4th, 2007 § 55

It was a Monday, and as always, Mom and Dad drove my brother and I to ABS-CBN where he work, and to the apartment (in Ortigas) where I stay on weekdays, respectively.

I had my laptop on in the car that time, and was excitedly explaining to Dad how I can now access the net anywhere through Globe Visibility. I’m sure Dad didn’t understand a bit of what I was saying but he nodded as if he did, and teased me about how her little girl has turned into an “anti-social geek.” At some point he even joked, “Nak bili mo rin ako ng laptop,” and in my head I was already considering the possibility. » Read the rest of this entry «

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