11/10/2007
Lightning confrontations

Of all the things Marcia and I would discuss last night, it was two years ago. Saliksik, to be exact. It's funny remembering that, at one point in my life, I thought that I have ruined it for me, and for the rest of my existence in college. It only took one word, one answer to Clarence's question, to make me think that I have become what I called a "block hate figure" - but, of course, you know what happened after.

The day after, I arrived on campus feeling very terrible. I climbed up Miguel's third floor and sat on the bench nearest to the stairs, just waiting for the class to start. Twenty minutes passed by, no trace of regret showing on my face, but deep inside it was there. I think it was Jino and Tracy who dragged me to M308, and when I took my seat, I was busy waiting for Sir Marasigan to come. Inevitably, I'd hear the noise of friendly chatter and laughter, and I was all the more uncomfortable.

That was two years ago. Actually, more than that, and by now - without rubbing it in - I'm pretty much considered up there. I remember receiving a comment about me having the "magic" when around people, and of course, being a bit cynical, I was a bit surprised to read that. I managed to crawl my way out of what initially was a very big hole, and now, well, people turn to me whenever they need me.

Sounds very idealistic, sure. It feels a bit horrible thinking that they want you for the benefits. Marcia put it very succinctly - college friends, she says, are temporary. If you're allowed to be clingy in high school, because that's being extolled to some extent, when you move on everything exists for convenience's sake. I don't know - maybe it's something about being independent, before you get out into the so-called real world - but, well, that's how things happen.

It's a frustration with myself. People go to me for questions, and being a bit altruistic there's a sense of happiness with realizing that I answered one's question. When I ask questions, though, they're usually at a loss for answers. Not that I take it badly, really. I don't think anybody's aware of that, either. During advanced radio production class I end up looking like the music geek when we were discussing what goes into our final project. You could take it positively, the way people glorify (and not in an ill-fated manner) being a music snob.

And, of course, I'm out to "use" people as well, but I'm not aware of it like everybody else. Think of my physical "attachment" tendencies, and you'll probably figure out why. Everything, from excuses to dropped phone calls to insistent emails, is made for some function, eventually. And all of us, we're all unaware of it.

Two years ago, you could say, I used everyone to make myself clear.

I think that's what's missing in my life, I told Marcia. I haven't really been to a regular high school setting, which is why I am surprised at all the exploitation (that's a buzzword in class) I've seen and experienced. My parents have regular nights out with their high school friends, and only email their college friends. Surely if I look ahead I'll be living the bachelor's life, not being invited to things, and only because there's no more need for me! That's it, it's all over, thank you very much. But it's a blessing in disguise - you have more control over your time, your energies and your ideas, and much more in a world where anyone can just swipe what you have and make it their own. But somehow I made it through - and now, well, things are much clearer. Derek said there must have been a reason why I decided to tell the world that I'm faking it. Now we all understand each other a little bit more.

Faking it. Echo, echo, echo. Actually I really wasn't being fake to everybody else - what they saw was Niko at his prime. I meant I was being fake to myself, that I thought everything was well when it actually wasn't. Imagine one who's relentlessly clueless about everything, released into the wild, and seeing how evolved everybody is. Sociology says we strive to adapt, and that was my ill-fated attempt to do so. Well, two years later and I see normal, only a bit more annoying that everybody else.

Faking it isn't really good, though. Lying isn't either, but it's so ubiquitous you accept it as a way of life. You just never know what to say to anyone, until it takes so long for you to think of what there is to say. Well, the extremes of, err, making the most of your benefits. But it won't last, really, and you better be prepared for it. I'll be stepping off college in hopefully less than a school year, probably as clueless about the world as the moment I stepped on, but I think I'm prepared. Besides, nothing gets you into a job more than being true, or your potential employers are very adept at it.

Come to think of it, I wasn't really faking it that fateful day. It may sound impulsive, but when I answered in the affirmative to Clarence's question and got everybody crying and exposing each other, things were moving. It takes a catalyst, and let me rub it in - it somehow had to be me. Now things are better.

How about you? Are things better for you? Or are you faking the essence out of everybody to keep the benefits?

And your responses...

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