12/14/2007
His little love affair with the celluloid girl: the term in review

He's tired of going after the rich girls. He doesn't even know why he goes after them. Why would they spend so much on a dog collar, or maybe a single fingernail, he doesn't have an idea. But he knows he will have to rely on them at one point. I, on the other hand, don't know why he turned to me.

They call him the boy who never got anything. He's well-provided, though - he's just naïve with the ways of the world. He was asking me about all those people he saw, and why they always seem to shun him, for some particular reason. I didn't really have an answer, but entertained him nonetheless. I figured he needed it more than anyone else.

One day he went to me. He says there's another one he's seen.

They call her the celluloid girl. Why she was called with something schmancy off science, I don't know either. He says she's got all these obscure interests that he'd also like to get his hands on, but eventually she feels so dominating, he ends up running away. But being him, though, he doesn't know why he likes her in the first place. He just told me about a time when he had three choices - he shunned one because she's too high-brow, and shunned the other because she's ordinary. And so he sticks to the celluloid girl.

Of course I was confused. I don't know what he's exactly talking about, half-relying instead on obscure stories and hand-me-down anecdotes. I knew I had to see her for myself.

One time, I finally did. Little did I know that the celluloid girl was among us! Same batch, same course, same mindset like everybody else. I see her attend her classes when I finish mine. I see her hanging out with, say, Fran somewhere near EGI, or with Misha somewhere on the second floor, or with Kat somewhere at Z2. The time eventually came when I talked to her, and I understood why that boy would go head over heels for her: she is different. Eccentric, maybe, or eclectic, but accessible all the same. Or, maybe too accessible.

I saw him a few days later and told him about the celluloid girl. With every story I tell him, he swoons, and swoons a lot. He wanted me to become some sort of bridge, and I decided not to. Besides, I told him, I am also busy with a lot of things - thesis, thesis partners, other thesis groups, and the many expectations people have of me. I think I let the guy down. But somehow he decided to do it himself. And so he did.

The celluloid girl, meanwhile, started to become very ubiquitous. I started getting used to seeing her around, and we'd talk occasionally - once in the third floor, once in the second, once in the classroom, once while waiting. I figured out she was like everybody else - too similar to some of my friends, for instance. She isn't really that extraordinary, I thought, but there is something with her. For once, that boy got it right.

The pain with ubiquity is that you'll know far too much. Eventually I saw her go with some other guy while I was working on one of my required screenplays. Then the boy rushed in. He is jealous, so jealous. He thought things were going perfectly. Obviously it isn't.

Finally, he has reverted to being naïve. I can't help him - he's conjured up all these dream sequences, him with the celluloid girl. He's known far too much without actually asking her anything. Stalking, simply said. I eventually relented, and let him down some more. It's a requirement I'm supposed to work on, not someone else's life. He's better off repressing his dreams rather than taking that first step. And besides, I thought, she is taken, to much of everybody's dismay, including mine.

Time then flew so fast. Screenplays gave way to videos, gave way to thesis proposals, gave way to speeches, gave way to research papers - everything gave way to everything. People changed affiliations, ideas, relationships, and whatnot. I only heard the boy on the radio, calling himself "celluloid boy", dedicating a sappy love song to the girl he claims to love. He hasn't done anything yet, obviously. Celluloid girl is still with her man.

And I forgot about the boy, as I spent sleepless nights dealing with my own sort.

Eventually I didn't hear a word from the boy who never got anything. The last thing he left me was a note. "She will forever stay in my heart," it said. "Let me live my dream."

The funny thing is, now I am friends with the celluloid girl, and I did not have to act out as weird as that boy did. Now he's so far away from her, and I figured out why they call her the celluloid girl. Never mind the rich girl presumptions - everything he fed on - she happens to be like us, only a little more introspective, a little more wicked with her humor, and, well, a little more lovable than the rest of us. The last time we talked, she could've just taken a camera and recorded everything with it. All her aspirations on one small videotape.

And, for once, I didn't get it.

And your responses...

this is a fucken good post. it's got to be my favorite. tell me, is this a true story? well it doesn't matter. i love it.

Blogger lizlan12/20/2007     

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