The first post for the month shall be dedicated to my SO, whom I lovingly call Adverbs.

The nick came from a conversation about a “novel” called Adverbs from the guy who wrote the Series of Unfortunate Events books. I was immediately drawn to the title; what English teacher wouldn’t be? I initially thought it was a book of essays on writing and grammar, but I was in for a then-pleasant surprise when I discovered it was actually a novel. 

Well, that pleasant surprise soon turned to disdain when I realized that it was actually a series of short stories. I was confused at the sudden shift in character perspective from the first to the second character; I thought that the two stories were related. I was sorely mistaken. The first story bored me; the second was meh, and the third? Let’s just say that the third’s not always the charm.
I ranted about this so much to my SO when we were just friends that he joked about calling me Adverbs on a daily basis. I told him I’d call him the same thing. It stuck. Aside from the usual terms of endearments, we use adverbs because it is our own crazy name for each other with an equally crazy love story behind the name (but that’s for a separate blog post).


2015 in review

My favorite teacher, Rica Bolipata-Santos, posted this writing assignment on her FB account:


Ma’am Rica said that it wasn’t really important to follow the number but that we should “Write [our] year, in honor and in supplication.”

So I choose to write my year in months, with these highlights and disappointments and game changers and things I focused on and forgot remembered in the order they happened.

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Para kanino tumitibok ang puso mo?

Translation: For whom does your heart beat?


Art by JJ Agcaoili

Art by JJ Agcaoili

Who was I kidding? Other people may have believed me, but the armor wasn’t there to protect my heart. It was there to keep people out. Who wants to let in the evil of the world? Who wants to let in scumbags and scoundrels? I had no time for those. My vision for myself was clear. IS clear. SAVE THE WORLD, ONE SHITTY BRAIN AT A TIME.

Oh, I know you want to protect me. But I can’t breathe in here, cried my heart.

Shut up.

You ruin everything, you know. You make me cry when I should have a brave face on. When I should have a stern and scary face on. You make me weep.

Weeping makes me tired. If I’m tired, I can’t work.

But the tears cleanse you. They get rid of the bad stuff.






They don’t take me seriously. Not my bosses. Not my students. Not my friends. Why? I cry easily. When I’m mad, I cry. When I’m sad, I cry. When I’m happy, I cry.


But look, you’re hurting now the more you keep me here.


I love you.



Who am I kidding?

Slowly, I unlock my heart, remove the armor, zip it wide open.

I love you.

I love you.


Written as a response to a writing prompt posted by the artist mentioned above.

the original writing prompt

the original writing prompt

I don’t think the title and the piece have any obvious connections. I’m not quite sure I know, either, but it was the first thing that popped into my head when I read the prompt and saw the art. What came next was… a surprise to me. I haven’t written creatively in YEARS, and I’m not sure this qualifies as a poem or a short story, but it’s mine, and I’m iffy about this but… That’s all I can say.

Also, JJ said I can only use this in class if I post my own response to the prompt haha. 🙂 Thanks for the challenge, JJ. 🙂


The other thing I hate about today is that all of a sudden all these embarrassing moments I’ve had–even those where I think I shouldn’t have said or done something–came crashing down WHILE I WAS WORKING. So all of these things I’ve done that I believe now I SHOULDN’T have done came back to haunt me. Believe me, these are just small things like using high heels instead of flats for class or biting someone’s head off because you had a bad day. But these came by the droves, so it took all my willpower to not bang my head on my desk.

Can you imagine? I had a wonderful work rhythm and routine already and I was NEARLY DONE then ALL OF A SUDDEN this brain decided to screw with me. Or itself. Whatever.


Someone tell me: what is the point of blogging if there isn’t even anybody who will read your work?


Today was actually pretty okay.

I had free lunch, free afternoon snacks, I got rid of things I needed to get rid of, was able to finish half of what I need to finish, and basically had a decent day.

It was just all the thinking that kind of ruined things for me.


Writer-me is frustrated because Teacher-me wants to censor everything I post here.

It’s a constant battle and I find all-of-me losing.


21. How does the sun feel when it looks down at the Earth?

F****ng bastards. You have no clue, do you? Zero clue that you’re about to die (courtesy of yours truly), but instead of living or ensuring that you leave a positive legacy, you just go on killing each other. Stupid, stupid, stupid Earthlings.

Aw, well. That Malala girl deserves that prize. Too bad she got shot first. I wish I could burn those shooters. I wish I could burn the entire Earth and rid it of the evil, but that would mean ridding it of the good, too. I’ll have my way with you, Earth. Just you wait.

Oh look, that desert now has plant life! Is that Africa? Good job, old man, whoever you are, for reviving what used to be dead land.

New York, you’re a mess. Where’s the Philippines? Where’s Boracay? I need the sun worshippers.*

Oh, Earth. You incite such feelings of anger and love within me. I feel sad for you.


n.b. I write this 8:28 p.m., which is 8:28 a.m. in New York. So. The sun can see New York. I think.

TPPB: A Stormy Heart

Screen Shot 2014-10-05 at 2.01.18 PM



Yesterday, I woke up to three messages from XSSJ all asking for things I “owed” them in terms of articles and recordings. Yes, it’s my fault that I haven’t been on top of them, but honestly, it’s not my top priority compared to all the other things I have to accomplish.

So yes. The weather in my heart has been scary.

Some months ago I woke up in the middle of the night to find dust being blown all over me and it was coming from the cracks in the wall where the aircon unit was installed. The wind howled like crazy; I could hear branches of trees banging against windows and each other, and it was the most horrific sound I’ve heard since the signal #3 typhoons of my childhood.

But that’s an angry kind of weather. Scary, yes, but it is an angry kind.

The kind in my heart is just plain scary. I don’t know how else to put it into words. It’s like when thunder rumbles in the distance, signalling the coming of a deluge of rain. You see the dark clouds. You feel the atmosphere go from extremely humid to eerily cool in a span of minutes. And you shiver at the thought that something horrible is on its way.

That’s how my heart is now.

It is reminiscent of last week:

Screen Shot 2014-10-05 at 3.09.58 PM


It’s probably just stress again, but there you have it.