Surprise me

Photograph one from sequence eight: what's the next giveaway?

Thinking that they have annoyed him, Rozette and her classmates decided to write an apology letter. Although nothing bad really happened - he was just away, as was originally planned - they got chocolates.

In our case, there was no need for anything - it just popped up. At the beginning of each documentary film class, everybody is waiting for what Sir Doy will bring next. The first time it happened, everybody never had an idea that he actually had something up his sleeve - a bag that served as a giveaway from the Media Congress sometime last year. Malia got it, after plainly raising her hand, still in disbelief.

The next meeting, he started asking questions about Citizen Kane. Leslie got it, and received - you guessed it - a Citizen Kane keychain. So was the state of affairs during the beginning of each class: something, dug up from the del Mundo shelves, gets given away to one member of the class. One time it was a notebook. Another time it was an ID strap. Another time it was another bag, from the same event, only with an ID strap in it. It even happened that he gave away some sweet delicacy whose name escapes me. And today, Loui got a mug, from Viva Films, among all things.

Initially it was a surprise. That Tuesday before my birthday, nobody thought it would happen, but it did, and when it continued, the element of surprise diminished, but never disappeared. It's a matter of putting a slight stroke of glee on most faces whenever they realize that another giveaway has been brought to M208. Never mind that they don't get it - it breaks the tension, while building it up at the same time.

This past week I have been complaining about ubiquity, and if you're into things for quite a while, you'll very much understand that I'm alluding to someone. (These things do happen, apparently.) The fancy thing with attraction is the element of surprise - you'll never know when it will happen. If it doesn't happen, you long for it initially, but sooner than the next time you hear the words "hello to eleven o'clock" it's gone. Obviously I never had the privilege of experiencing just that.

I sort of built it that way, actually. Some might know that I have expected a bit too much from this term - that now is the time when things move away and I prepare for departure. I think I conditioned myself a bit too smoothly; the moment it broke, it slipped. And it couldn't have come at a worse time: it's the moment I thought it was over, to the point that I have sort of begun the process all over again. There she is, typing away, without a care in the world. Sure, earphones are attached.

Today, though, I finally realized what it actually means. I still come to school without expectations, most probably because I learned that I shouldn't have any. I get along with my work and my friends, often causing confusion, but nevertheless being coherent all the same. And then, out of the blue, it pops up - she pops up - when you least expect it. Better yet, when you're thinking of something completely different.

Maybe that's the power of surprise. It just gets you through the right amount of anticipation - that thing that nobody can deny, nor define - and when it hits you, it hits you in the right spot, giving you a half-terrified smile in your face. It still works to my advantage, if you look at it in a different way. The thing is, the moment my first expectations - that of a slow fade - were broken, I was pleasantly surprised, and for some reason, I still look forward to it being broken every single day, because the moment greetings become reality, and actions become flutters in the wind, you can't help but be helplessly smitten - even if there's no chance in the world - and smile.

Let's face it, though. The best surprises don't happen when you set yourself up for a surprise.

I might as well set another expectation. No more blog entries about...

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