It was a very good year

It was a very good year.

Perhaps many of us may share this sentiment. Perhaps it may not have been so for some. Yes, there were setbacks and trials and challenges and all those things that would make us think otherwise. Then we are brought to mind of all the disasters that cause death, destruction, and the like. I am remembering Dumaguete, Iligan and Cagayan de Oro, and many other places hit by the recent storms.

Perhaps we may not see it now, but saying “it was a very good year” is an act of faith. We have faith in other people, because they stood with us and made life this 2011 a wonderful one in spite of all that has happened. We have faith in our capacities, frail though they are, to change the world and change the way we see it. We have faith that a Higher Power has been guiding us and the world, even if we sometimes do not notice it.

“It was a very good year”: saying it is an act of love. We know that it is love that has sustained us, and has driven us to generosity, to friendship, to deepen our relationships with each other.

Most of all, it is an act of hope. We may have begun 2011 with the hope that it would be a good year, but as the year ends, it is a hope that no matter what, things have been good for us.

And maybe it was a very good year because we may have become better people in the process. We have become stronger people, wiser people, more loving people, more hopeful people.

If only for that, it was a very good year.

28 December 2011
Holy Innocents Day


Beyond the Sea

After reading books about government secrets, I found myself at a mall where a big band was playing standards. One of these was that venerable French ballad “La Mer,” which if I recall correctly was by Jacques Previn. It is better known in the English-speaking world as “Beyond the Sea,” made popular by Bobby Darin. (Pete Lacaba’s Salinawit group wrote a Filipino version, and during one memorable Printemps des Poetes I sang it at intermission while no one was supposedly watching.)

So what do these all have in common? My sister’s erstwhile favorite, The X-Files. FBI Agent Dana Scully, played by Gillian Anderson, had an admiral-father who liked that song very much that it was played at his funeral.

I have not, unlike my sister, bothered seeing anything beyond season three, but my thoughts turned to a classic episode from those early years which featured Peter Boyle as a cantankerous psychic whose reticence to make use of his pretty accurate powers provided much of the episode’s dark comedy. In one scene, Fox Mulder, Scully’s partner ( played by David Duchovny), tests the psychic’s abilities by asking how he, the agent, would die. The answer? “Auto-erotic asphyxiation.”

It was after reading a recent book about Area 51 that I realized that the truth was definitely out there. Of course, the author admits that a lot of stuff about the officially non-existent top-secret military base (which was at one point on Google Maps) has not yet been declassified so my fair advice is to “trust no one.” At least until they get around to telling us the truth about the consequences of Roswell–and yes, Roswell does have something to do with Area 51. (Knowing wink)

And on that note, off to Fete de la WSK’s final night.

Not twilight

Now listening: Fuseboxx performing “Twilight” at Hobbit House.

Yes, I was disappointed today.

Perhaps it marked a sea change, the final swerve that started in May when I first met the lead singer of a band who became in many ways a musical inspiration–they did change my mind about music and a few other things.

Well, what did also change was that I knew exactly what another friend meant–between two people, one of them was worth the risk. Taken together, the personal and the professional that is, what is happening as the year ends is that I am learning to regret and, yes, to move forward.

So thanks to the friends I had made in the last year or two, whether or not we will be parting ways or otherwise. In some cases, it will be for a space. In others, it may take far more time.

Trust and proof

Last night I discovered that some people were more concerned about maintaining their brand than trusting its future to others who may be able to keep its quality while taking it into the future. That is how I read the situation I am now facing.

I also understood why I am on the wrong side of the fence on some things. It is clear that I should be on the other side, the side that knows better than to confuse brand marketing with egregious self-promotion.

I now know better. It takes a lifetime to build trust. It takes minutes to charm someone. But just one incident, just one, and it’s all bloody over.

If I have misread the situation, I apologize. But it is clear: nothing will ever be the same. And all bets are off.

So there

It’s a different story now. I have been given a new responsibility and this time I hope I will not regret it. After all, unlike with before, I am in a position to draw some strands of my life together. And I will be setting more reasonable expectations of what I can and cannot do.

I need to learn that because with every surprise comes more surprises.

Next up: a story on “songs of the sacred.” Or what Bukas Palad, the Techy Romantics, and Peter Gabriel have in common.