Sunday, October 9, 2005

My Korean Fling

Let me start by saying that I rarely watch Korean-novelas or Korean films. I can honestly say that I don’t enjoy them all that much, but people around me seem to be in a Korean-entertainment-frenzy. With all this hoopla around Korean flicks, one night, I find myself in a dream having an affair with a Korean guy. Definitely one of the weirdest dreams I’ve had in a long while, and that’s why I’m writing about it.

I don’t exactly remember all the details but it was a cute dream, with a sort of chick-flick-type storyline. If only I can remember all my dreams, I'd start my own film company which will produce comedies, romantic-comedies, sci-fi (yea, sci-fi, seriously), and action, or any combination of the aforesaid types (but no epics or drama please).

Ok, so the dream starts with me attending an outdoor wedding (a sort of beach setting) of a distant cousin. So there I am, dressed in itchy formal and around me are all of my relatives from all sides of the family, and we’re listening to a very dull priest rambling on longer than we had expected. We start to fidget and start to chitchat with each other, and then at one point, I get introduced to this guy standing close by. He’s the husband of another one of my cousins, and he is Korean.

Go ahead, reread the title again.

So our little group (including the Korean who speaks perfect English and a spattering of Filipino) continued to chat while the homily was going on, then at one point the Korean quips and I quip quickly back and this exchange went on through the entire ceremony. You know that feeling that you get with some people that you just know that you’re going to get along pretty well with that person? That’s what we had, me and the Korean, I felt we could be good friends, if not more. The wedding is over, and after all the niceties saying our “Congratulations!” to the newlyweds and hellos and kisses to all the other distant relatives, the Korean invited me to explore the place (the place was sort of Boracay-ish, so lotsa places to go to). And I agreed, I had no reason not to.

So we went to all the places (I won’t write about each and every place but think of a part of a chick-flick where there's a montage of scenes where the two leads get to know each other and there’s background music that’s supposed to make you smile) and one of places was sort of a Korean temple, but with monks and incense and the Korean was showing me their rituals and stuff.

Weird stuff, I told ya. Ok, so here’s the part where we’ve established that me and Korean clicked. When one said something, the other had a quick reply of assent or additional information on the topic. And at each revelation, we looked at each other with questioning and yet amused eyes thinking, “This feels right, this IS right.” In addition, I was thinking “Of course nothing could happen, he’s married, and to a relative of mine nonetheless”.

So after about a week of spending each day with each other and him bringing me home (the temporary beach house with my parents) each night, it was time for me to leave and go back to the real world. I knew that he knew that I was leaving soon. And in my heart, I was waiting for him to come by. As I was packing, the constant ringing of the doorbell kept me looking to the window to see who it was, my heart sinking with each ring that wasn’t him. The whole family is ready to go, there's no Korean in sight and I’ve resigned myself to going away without even saying goodbye. As I was about to board the plane, there’s a call from behind and I look on hopefully. It is the Korean, running towards me, and then finally wrapping his arms around my waist. No words, just two people, looking in each others eyes. The eyes doing the talking, his and mine, full of emotion, brimming with tenderness.

And… cut. The End.

It’s open-ended I know, but it’s better that way. I can form my own conclusion, or I can just wait for tonight’s dream, My Korean Fling, Part II. Stay tuned.

Monday, October 3, 2005

Do We Overpamper Ourselves?

I took a sort of personality test a few months back in a seminar where you get to measure the importance you give to different aspects of your life. The highest percentage I got was for the ‘self-pampering’ bit. Apparently, I give more importance to me and my happiness more than I give importance to family, religion, love, friends, career et al. What’s even more surprising was that there were a whole lot more of us who had this result and there were just a handful of those who gave the highest importance to career or family or religion. So now the question that has popped in my head quite a few times already is: Are we overindulging ourselves?

We buy clothes/shoes/accessories we don’t need, eat food we don’t need, drink drinks we don’t need, watch movies we don’t need, get massages we don’t really need. Quite regularly we spend too much for stuff we don’t need. You get what I mean? No? Well, all I’m trying to say is that I’ve just recently taken myself out of the box, and looking at my life from the outside, I see myself one day eating bread and drinking coffee that I bought for three times its actual cost. And I wasn’t even that hungry, I just wanted bread and coffee. And boy, I can name other instances like this.

This day and age, every damn thing is overpriced. And three most blatant examples of overpricing in my opinion are bread, movies, and coffee.

Bread: Why are there sosy bakeries everywhere nowadays? I say sosy because I believe try to create that impression. They advertise fluffy, freshly-baked bread in a delightful array of flavors.

Cost: P50/piece give or take.
Frequency: Once in a while. I admit I love them, and I used to hate bread.

Movies: They’ve added everything to give you the whopping movie experience you can ever have. THX, Dolby, a little ambiance, good food, good seats, uh-huh the works, baby. It doesn’t hurt that there are new films once a week, great for business. And add to the cost, the popcorn, tacos, nachos, burgers, hotdogs, sodas, juices and other junk food.

Cost: P200.00 give or take.
Frequency: Roughly once a week. Even movies like Catwoman don’t stop me.

Coffee: They have cappuccinos, frappuccinos, mochaccinos, and all those other ‘ccinos’. Whatever happened to good old black coffee? Underneath all those layers of sugar, cream, milk, mocha, cinnamon, chili (ok, maybe not chili), is that wondrous flavor from that little black coffee bean.

Cost: P100.00 give or take.
Frequency: Daily. Yes, caffeine is addicting, and don’t argue.

Why are they overpricing? Well, there is business where there are dividends. They go on with their business profiting as much as they do because we buy from them. We get sucked into the vortex of shameless overpricing. And for what? For ourselves? For our happiness? Bull.

We put much emphasis on our indulgences, we nonchalantly pay for stuff like these because we want to, we enjoy it, and we can. But another question is, should we? While there are others who can barely make ends meet, and others still whose ends can never meet at all, do we deserve to indulge ourselves regularly? (and that’s another story altogether) Looking at the whole nine yards, I feel guilty sometimes. One, because I pamper myself too much; and two, because there are others out there who cannot and I’m not doing anything about it. But the good of it all, things can change. I’m not sure I’ll be buying any of those crappyccinos anytime soon.
There was an error in this gadget