The Sunbaked King

I Am The Sunbaked King

the_king

thesunbakedking.wordpress.com
June 16, 2008 – September 22, 2009

Baked under the sun:
Out of embers and ashes
Came the dark-skinned king

(Click here to see my latest reincarnation.)

Filed under: Helios, Ra

Breaking the Silence

I’ve read every blog entry, I’ve gone through every Tweet, I’ve seen every Facebook status. My chest tightens at every reference to me; my heart goes into overdrive at the words with which you express your sentiments. You know how good you are with words. You can use them like a spread of soothing balm… or brandish them like deadly weapons. Weapons that could jab and sting and hurt. Your eloquence, once the source of appreciative awe, is now the source of melancholy. Over the past few weeks, what was once subtle releases of emotions have transformed into bolder declarations. The cross-references are quite hard to miss, and I am more feelingero than I am dense.

But I chose to remain silent.

My silence may have been misinterpreted as something that constitutes cessation. The operative word there is “misinterpreted.” The operative syllable there is “mis-“. You have declared, time and again, that the people worth keeping, those who are for keeps, are those who stay. You have stated, time and again, that it is time for you to move on, to become a stronger person, to be the one who’s won back this time around. I agree. But only when you are certain that those who left, really left. Only when you are sure that the person you’re saying goodbye to has severed his ties with you. Let me assure you, this is not the case. I chose to remain silent, but it did not mean that I had burned down months of friendship.

The reason for the silence is simple: I had to recover from the weight of the admission. The admission in itself wasn’t bad; nothing about the entire thing was. Like you said, it was getting difficult for you not to say anything, and it was unfair for the both of us to have the issue hanging over our heads like a ticking time bomb. Sooner or later, the whole thing would come out– neatly or explosively, depending on the situation, and you dealt with it neatly. But like with every thing in this world, there is a trade-off. Once the admission was made, the landscape has changed. We cannot move forward as though nothing occurred, na parang wala lang. That would be awkward and weird and highly restrictive. Only time could remove the innate awkwardness of the situation. That, AND a healthy dose of conversation, which we’ve never had the opportunity to have.

I apologize for not addressing this sooner, because my silence appears to have led you to a dark place. It was never my intention to depress you. It was never my intention to push you away. But I needed the time. I sincerely hope you understand.

I do not need to re-extend my friendship, because it was never lost in the first place. But for the sake of re-establishing the intelligent and mindbending conversations, the laughter over the likes of Miley Cyrus and Vanessa Hudgens, the long long trips to faraway places, and, generally, just the good times, let me now shake your hand and ask:

“Friends?”

Starbucks is just five minutes away, and last I’ve seen, they’re still selling Kettle chips. It’s good to share these things with someone.

Filed under: Ra, Untamed, Utter Sadness

I Am Not Who You Think I Am

I am human.

I am flawed.

You cannot impose an identity on me, because the boy that you think you know, you really don’t know very well. What you have in your mind is an Ideal. That Ideal is not me; I am Imperfection.

Cease to pin traits that I do not have. I am neither as intelligent, nor as responsible, nor as happy, nor as nurturing, nor as good-natured as the person you have envisioned me to be. First impressions, while characteristically positive, do not last and shouldn’t. Facades, while innately appealing, must be ignored.

This is for you who voted me vice-president back in second grade. This is for you who elected me group leader in the fourth. This is for you who persuaded me to join trivia contests. This is for you who coached me in math. This is for you who paid me for calculus tutorials. This is for you who fed me when I was hungry. This is for you who lent me money when I had none. This is for you who gave me gifts to show you care. This is for you who trusted. This is for you who loved.

Do not consider this a pity party. I am not fishing for compliments, I am not looking for sympathy. I am simply stating the truth. And the truth is this: I am not who you think I am. It is unwise to think otherwise.

Expectations can only lead to sadness.

Filed under: Ra, Them, Untamed, Utter Sadness

The Sunbaked King

The realm of fiction is vast, and the reach of fantasy is wide. When everything else has left us– our virginity, our sanity, our pride– only the imagination remains. Even our faith can waver in the face of compelling evidence, or in the aftermath of a tragic end. Even our love can turn to hate upon the sight of a tremendous betrayal; or worse, turn to indifference after the fiery waves of vengeance have died down. But imagination, yes, that construct of the human mind, remains resilient, indomitable, indestructible, no matter what.

It fills the spaces of a lonely heart. It keeps him awake at night, preoccupied with thoughts of a happy ending. In a world that is just and fair to all (and therefore just as fantastical), he sleeps beside a loving warmth, their fingers intertwined in matrimony. Sunshine enters the windows in steady ethereal lines, lightly kissing them both before they bestow the same blessing on each other. They smile and read each other’s minds: he’ll have coffee; the other’ll have toast. Today is going to be a good day, and everything is going to be all right.

He sees this vividly as he hugs his pillow and stares at the ceiling. The warmth of his blanket will do for now, but– a smile drifts across his face– there is hope.

Imagination feeds the seeking soul. The emptiness of an existence so bleak is filled with the desire to escape, to see a promised end that has been created, nurtured, and etched in his human mind. While the quest may seem futile, he will not falter. His thoughts shall guide him. In a world that is both merciful and forgiving (and therefore just as fictional), he reaches the end of his journey with bruises on his back and cuts in his hands, but this pain does not last. Across the godforsaken landscape, someone comes to him with water. When the water touches his lips, he is immediately refreshed.

In his dreams, he has reached his destination, and he has found his heart’s desire.

On June 16, 2008, this lonely heart saw that there was hope; this seeking soul found his heart’s desire. What was once known as The Dark-Skinned King found solace in a new heaven. On June 16, 2008, The Sunbaked King was born.

Baked under the sun:
Out of embers and ashes
Came the dark-skinned King.

Filed under: Helios, Mindlifting, Ra

A Return to Form

Hiatus over. I’m back. One note about the exam before we bury it in our memories until results day: never go back to your textbooks after a test to check if you got the answers right. You will always end up disappointed, because you will always find that you answered more questions incorrectly than correctly.

DUM DEE DAH.

Writing is true therapy. In the one month that I’ve gone AWOL on all virtual outlets (save for Twitter, but that barely counts as a conducive medium to write prose or poetry), writing is the one thing that I missed the most. There’s something liberating in the pit-pat of keys as my fingers move across the keyboard, something fascinating about watching the words form on the screen. While writing itself may not relieve me of this utter sadness, while blogging may not be the perfect solution to end a vicious cycle of doubt and regret, it does its freaking best to help. As thought flows from the mind to the spine to the arms to the fingers to the keyboard to the screen, a little bit more of my self is extracted, released, piece by piece. The process empties me. The process sets me free.

In two days’ time, my blog, The Sunbaked King, will celebrate its anniversary. Created out of a desire to impress, nurtured out of a need to write. In these bleak and dreary times, this is one outlet I’m glad to have regained.

This is a timely return to the blogging form. I’m happy to be back.

Filed under: Helios, Mindlifting, Ra, Utter Sadness

Sun Setting, King Leaving

Just for a month. But in the blogosphere, a month is a pretty long time. You’ll get pushed back down in those auto-updating blog rolls, and before you know it, your last post was “1 month ago“, and people will have forgotten about you. No matter. You have to make certain sacrifices in order to succeed. This is one of them.

Before I leave, however, a few words:

1. I am going on a study break. Serious this time. Jel has imposed a ban on the Internet for me, thinking it might be for the good. I concurred. Although my interest in games such as Restaurant City has waned somewhat, the allure of Facebook is still too strong, and I can spend hours browsing forums and TV show recaps and blogs.

2. My next two weekends are “booked,” and as much as I want to study full-time, I would have to make a special excuse for these two. This Saturday, I will be going to the Archuleta/Cook concert. The price of cancellation is not even worth discussing, so that’s that. The weekend after this, I will be attending the AJSS reunion. It’s just the best summer of my life, and I haven’t seen these people in years… it’s a no-brainer.

3. This is actually the only ban that’s been approved by myself and my roommate. He’s conceded to the idea of Twittering, so I still have some connection to the online world, but I wouldn’t be able to access it through the Internet. Which means that I have to do it by phone, which costs some sum. In other words, if I want to have an online presence, I have to pay for it. There is no free lunch. (Shameless plugging: I want to thank Gravity for their wonderful Symbian program. Nothing else compares.)

4. Partay-ing, as far as I know, is still within the allowable terms of the deal. It’s weird how this one got through, but I guess the old college adage still holds: you can only do two out of these three things effectively at any time– study hard, party hard, sleep hard. Guess which one’s getting thrown out the window.

5. Don’t be shocked if posts appear out of nowhere in spite of the ban. I may not be able to use the Internet, but I can still blog. That’s highly unlikely, though, so in retrospect, scratch that: be shocked when posts appear. Also, be mad at me. It may not be cheating, but it kinda defeats the purpose of avoiding distractions, don’t you think?

6. Speaking of distractions… let’s leave it at that.

I guess that’s it for now. I’ll still be following the American Idol finale, but I’m not sure if I’m going to post my thoughts on it anymore; after all, it’s pretty obvious who I want to win. (Year-to-date [?] rankings as of last night: Adam Lambert – 2; Kris Allen – 2.4; Danny Gokey – 2.8. I can’t resist, sorry!) 

When I come back, I will deal with issues I’ve been avoiding for quite some time now. It’s time to make a stand.

Exam’s on the 11th. See you then.

Filed under: Helios, Ra, Rat Race

Here We Go Again

Here we go again. On this familiar ride.

This can only lead to madness.

Filed under: Eros, Ra

Seventeen

A COMMENTARY ON 17 AGAIN
Zac Efron, Leslie Mann

17again

At seventeen, Mike O’ Donnell (Matthew Perry/Zac Efron) was a god. Back then, his future was a very, very bright one. But one fateful day, his girlfriend came to him with news of her pregnancy and a choice. It was a difficult decision: he had to sacrifice his college scholarship for a life with his girl, one who he really truly loved. He chose the latter… and blamed her every day for 20 years for not being able to live the life he had sought for himself. When faced with a divorce, a shunned promotion, and two alienated children, he wished that he could redo his life over. One that perhaps ended with a happy ending, one that would salvage his life from the pit of depression it was now submerged in.

A spirit-guide granted him that wish.

This got me thinking: what happened when I was 17, and was there anything then I wish I could redo? Thanks to a nifty blogging “device,” I got my answer. Seventeen was one of the best years of my life.

When I was seventeen, I wrote my ideas on a Blue Feather notebook. Sometimes I used a black gel pen; sometimes I used a blue ballpen. Whatever color or type I used, I remember being happy putting down my thoughts on paper. Blogging then was almost non-existent, except for those who knew HTML and subscribed to sites such as Geocities. Longhand was the way to go if you were keen on immortalizing your angsty, testosterone-loaded, 17-year-old self. And that was what I did.

And this was what I wrote [I tried to replicate how the first page really looked like]:

guaranteed to jack you up — the faculty, zeke *

kerwin ray escape sentillas * kerwin, kerker, ker, min, wing, wingwing, ray, win
17 (as of the moment) yrs old * plans to die at 30, changed mind, now 50 to 60
 august 13, 1984 * 081384 * 13-08-84 * 13th of august, year of our Lord, 1984
5’4 and a half, less than 120 lbs * black eyes, big nose, huge head, thin stature
. . .
blue, brown, gray (fave colors) * hates violet, likes orange * idolize Joshua Daniel
Hartnett and Mark Wahlberg * infatuated with Britney Spears *
likes to be a model, seems like there is no hope * What
Dreams May Come, The Matrix, The Others, Lion King, Blair Witch Project 1 & 2, 
Liar, Liar, Entrapment, Hearts and Souls, etc., etc., etc., * never that honest *
Stephen King, Anne Rice, Clive Barker, Christopher Pike, Edgar Allan Poe, Peter 
Straub (authors) * Pizza Hut, Greenwich, McDonald’s, Jollibee * wants to be a
psychopath * wants to be a millionaire * openly closed book * Nokia 3330 *
contact me at raker_17@hotmail.com * 09177019896 * … * Globe
Telecom, Personal plan * Boy Meets World, Friends, Sliders, WW2BAM, TWL, Battle
of the Brains * mathematics freak, so they say * writes badly or nicely * the
spark.com analyzes and I am a Dreamer * submissive, introvert, abstract, feeler *
pop fan (boy bands, etc., etc.,) * Linkin Park fan * fan de sal and fan de leche *
corny, childish, cheesy, corrupt, careful, careless, contradictory, callous *

* sad, happy, scared, nervous, exalted, tearful, hateful, smiling, friendly, Kerwin

That gave a little peek into the person that I was seven years ago. Aside from the glaring fact that I was less than 120 lbs, a lot of things have changed about me. Some of which were for the better, and some of which were for the worse. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter, though. The wake-up calls, the enlightenment, the changes in mindset all contributed to the person who I am now, and the person I am now is one I am happy to be associated with. Mike O’ Donnell eventually realized that he didn’t regret the decision he made that day; he just forgot. It’s good that some things never really change. It’s good that some people never really leave you.

[Beneath all the gratuitous shots of Zac Efron, there’s a coherent story about second chances, and how we never really need them. It’s a feel-good movie best shared with friends who share the same “interests.” Hehe.]

Filed under: Cinema, Ra, Sunshine, The Couch Potato, Utter Joy

On The Road to Being New

I’ve been assessed two ways by two different people this past week, one in the form of a statement, and the other, a question. The first person told me that what she liked about me was that I’m optimistic. She was just referring to my totally positive outlook regarding the results of our gymming, but the assessment came across as real at so many various levels. A few days back I wrote that I wanted to renew myself, to make me a better me. It’s a resolution that’s quite difficult to achieve. It’s going to be less reachable, however, if I faced it with a negative stance. Several famous people have uttered immortal statements about “believing in one’s self” and “conquering your fears” so there’s no need to rehash them here. But it’s true: on the road to being new, one has to put on the happy face. It’ll make things easier.

The second person asked me if my sudden drive in blogging (check out the numbers at the side, you’ll see what he means) is a way of overcompensating for something. He was quoting a line from Dollhouse: “People who are overachievers are overcompensating.” This comment intrigued me. A lot. I wondered, long and hard, what it was that I was trying so damn hard to mask. Because it isn’t just the blogging. There’s the gymming, there’s the dieting, there’s the bitching (by my standards, people, by my standards), there’s the trying-hard-to-do-work thing, there’s the trying-hard-to-go-out thing. I’m trying hard to do so many things at once– with my body, with my lifestyle, with my attitude, with my mindset– that it’s possible I’m doing this for some other reason. Or maybe that’s precisely it: on the road to being new, one has to overcompensate for his oldness, for the fact that he’s being the same.

On the road to being new, one has to soar above all expectations. One has to take flight.

Filed under: Ra, Untamed

100 Words

heaven + ground + storm + archuleta + happening + rejection + pasok + flapjacks + forgotten + incredible + california + hermit + games + good + journey + taipan + cows + single + knight + kaban + sunday + boob + four + wall + aisle + august + tomb + chris + iphone + entry + history + sassy + wall-e + birthday + way + breakfast + clone + sumosam + study + darkness + competition + poem + jacques + death + coffee + eavesdropping + contented + corollary + catch + atenista + eagle + embers + other + recovery + melancholia + retreat + one + sidebar + thunder + q + hush + coat + waltz + letters + exam + know + family + musical + incomprehensible + leche + minutes + comeback + comeback + universe + blast + joke + brothers + yearend + series + 2008 + 2009 + goodbye + forgotten + sing + united + nations + avenue + honeymoon + american + hopeless + rest + idol + night + honors + honesty + hot + half-empty + hee + hope + 100 =

100 posts in 100 words.

I’ve gone a long way, and there’s no sign of stopping.

I will never tire of writing.

Filed under: ...And Others, Being Blue, Bibliomania, Cinema, Domesticated, Eros, Fiction, Yes?, Gadgetry, Gastronomy, Geekery, Helios, Mindlifting, Ra, Rat Race, Sunshine, Testimonial, The Couch Potato, Them, TV, Untamed, Utter Joy, Utter Sadness, Vanity, Yearend