No Lonesome Dove

March 20, 2005 at 5:36 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

So yes, for the past few weekends, I have been engaging in a habit most unnatural for a society like the Philippines, which is very social and group-oriented. I have been dating myself. In a world in which they say you are judged by the company you keep, I chose to stand alone and have fun.

Which is not to demean the value of nights out with friends. In fact on Friday night, Tintin, Kit and Annie introduced me to Sangkalan, along Commonwealth Avenue, and after two glasses of bitter Tom Collins I was ready to croon “Insensitive”, “Won’t Last a Day Without You” and “Is It Okay If I Call You Mine” on the videoke. Yes, I’m sappy. But the waiter seemed to have lost my requests paper, so I was left egging Tintin on while she did a very nice rendition of “Time After Time”.

Such moments are not without their own value, but as I’ve promised myself a few months back, I need to look for myself out there. I can’t spend all my time here, when I could be missing out on what’s out there. This much I intimated to Kit on the cab on our way home.

You see, while Annie danced to it’s rendition of “I Will Survive”, I kept thinking why rocketman stood us up after saying he’d join us. See what I mean?

It just feels like there are times when I have to be somewhere else just so I would not find myself thinking about Rocketman, or He Whose Eyes Do Not Have It, or He Who Sleeps on the Wing, or any of those other guys.

Going out by myself — watching movies, smoking over coffee at Starbucks, browsing at POwerbooks, surveying the CD racks at Odyssey or Tower Records, and simply shopping by myself allows me no time to woolgather about non-lovers and all the love we never made.

So on those occassions when I would run off to Gateway to see a movie, I would make it a point to spend some time going around sans any companions, just to get a feel of how it feels like to not rely on anybody and yet see the world around me.

It could be mistaken for rampa, but I don’t mind. Of course a profitably pleasant chance encounter would be most welcome, but the raison d’etre of my wanderings is far more internal than perhaps even I am aware of.

I find a sense of excitement window shopping, when I can go into a store and pick out an item, and if I have enough cash, to buy it. Its encouraging, even if it sometimes feels like I’m falling into the trap of consumerist facetiousness.

After watching Robots yesterday, I walk into some of the shops at the lower levels and set my sights on a couple of items: a belt from Folded and Hung and a shirt with a breast pocket design from People are People. I also go inside Odyssey and make a mental note to take out the D’Sound Greatest Hits CD which I’ve been drooling over in the past few weeks. I also took note of a CD of jazz takes on some standards, including “First Time Ever I Saw Your Face”.

I get to thinking, as I downed my short cup of cold chocolate creme frap at Starbucks, how it is that simple pleasures such as this, even if they sound like brand bingeing, allow me to enjoy my senses and define myself as a person even if only as far as my taste in clothes, food and music is concerned.

I may not yet completely know who I am as a person, but I know who I’m not. I’m not someone who is no one without someone else. The affirmation is underlied by a question: how can I have fun with anyone, if I can’t have fun with myself?

Alone can be fun, as long as you do not lose sight of what you want. Self-respect starts with knowing that you can be all by yourself, and still be fine.

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  1. It did feel awkward walking around campus alone after being the other half of a couple for a few short months. After a while, though, the feeling of being ok just eating lunch by yourself while sitting at your favorite windowside table comes back and sometimes sorta forget that you were ever a part of a couple, that the very thought of it was weird to begin with.


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