1/08/2016
Two of three requirements

Belonging is hard.

If you've been reading this blog for an extended period of time - I don't expect anyone to have stuck around throughout the past ten years - you would know that I haven't exactly had the best luck with belonging. I just seem to rub people the wrong way, whether I don't share the same interests, or I'm just plain obnoxious. Or, well, they're idiots.

Well, okay, I know I'm being overly dramatic. Yes, I have made friends, and yes, I'm still very good friends with some of them. But when you've seen so much volatility in the things you believed will last forever, you learn to become quite apprehensive - and, at the same time, you strongly hope that you will find your crowd soon. Then again, I'm getting older, and finding a crowd is increasingly hard these days, because people calcify into their habits, more or less.

Yes, it's nice to meet new people. It's nice to find yourself in a new place, slowly get used to the awkwardness everybody inherently possesses, and then kick the hell out of it. Okay, that sounded harsh, but you get the idea, right? You're sitting in a room with five hundred other people and you just make idle chit-chat with someone picked not-so-randomly, and then you exchange Twitter handles (because phone numbers are sacred again) and hope for the best. But then, you know, people, again, calcify into their habits. Your chances of being let in - your chances of belonging - slowly go down, and somewhere inside you, you start to get desperate, unless, of course, you have calcified into your habits, too.

This year, though, is different. This year, I will belong, and I will try my hardest to belong. There's this rare opportunity; the window is short; I have to make the most of it.

Tomorrow, I turn 27.

I only have a year to be part of the 27 Club.

And the 27 Club is a cool club to be in. I mean, look at the people in there. Jim Morrison. Jimi Hendrix. Janis Joplin. Moving away from the J's, you have Kurt Cobain. (Okay. I just moved one letter away.) Richey Edwards. Amy Winehouse. Sure, they're dead, but up to now people still look up to them, because they're insightful people and great musicians.

Err... okay, sure, I'm not a musician. I merely write about them (and not legitimately at that). But my friends from elementary school would know that I attempted to write songs when I was a kid. I barely finished any of them, sure, but there was this one song that I finished. It was a campaign song. I was running for class president, and during the miting de avance I did not make a speech about what I would do if I was elected. Instead, I sang that song.

I lost the election.

To my credit, I did not vote for my opponent, like I did a couple of years before. In my defense, I had a crush on my opponent that one time.

All I'm saying is, yes, I was a musician. I may not have learned a musical instrument, nor am I not able to read notes (to Shalla's disappointment, perhaps), but I was a musician at one point. That's one requirement ticked.

I'm turning 27 tomorrow. That's another requirement ticked.

I have two of three requirements. I just have to set about working on the third: actually dying.

I only have a year to do that. If I'm to become part of the 27 Club, I have to die in the next 366 days. But - and I say this despite having entertained such thoughts in darker days - I am afraid of dying. I am afraid of not being aware of what's happening around me. What would my friends say once I die? Crap, they actually never liked me! See? Belonging is hard.

So that removes suicide from my options. Faked car accident? I can't be a reckless driver overnight, not when I have a brother who's more reckless that I am. So that's not an option, too. Sticking my finger into a circuit box? My reflexes still work. Nope, can't be that.

Long-term options. Okay. Drug use? I'll be arrested first before I die. We have no death penalty. Maybe Duterte will bring it back if he is elected president, but our judicial system is slower than molasses - by the time I am sentenced to die, I will be 37, maybe 47! Can't be that. And then there's the fact that I'm not cool enough to find a drug dealer so soon.

Maybe I should start a fight. No. I am actually too chicken for that.

That all leaves me with one option, an option that I can actually do: I'll drink myself to death.

I'll have to step it up, though. I don't drink a lot. On average I drink one beer - and that's on social occasions. I don't get invited to drinking sessions, nor do I go out clubbing or partying or doing what you idiots do on weekends, so me drinking happens rarely. The most I've had in one sitting was seven bottles of San Mig Light, and while I did have a bit of a headache, I still remember most of what happened that night. In other words, I don't get drunk, or at least not easily.

So, maybe I should drink fourteen bottles of San Mig Light in one sitting. Or seven bottles of Red Horse. One whole bottle of whiskey? I like whiskey, I learned. As long as I get drunk. I'll just have to get drunk every single day, throughout my 27th year, until my liver gives up and I stumble to the sidewalk and refuse to wake up. Or until I stagger down the bike lane, thinking I'm riding a bike, and get hit by a government garbage truck who does not care for such things.

There. I'm dead. And when I die, I can finally say I belong to the most exclusive club of all.

Or not. Because I'll be dead by then. So you'll have to do the declaring.

What do you mean you won't?

And your responses...

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