Everything started in the smocket during freshman year. You looked like Wednesday Addams personified, but a friendlier version. Of everyone there, I didn’t expect you to be the nice upperclassman who’d go out of her way to talk to the awkward girl and make sure that she wasn’t out of place. But that’s how it happened, and it didn’t happen just once. It continued until the day you graduated.

Black was your color, as seen in your goth fashion sense and winged eyeliner, but there was nothing dark about your personality. Sure, there were times when you were snarky, but always in a funny way. I’ll never forget the way you always poked fun at everyone that they became running jokes. It was boobs and uptightness in my case. I can’t keep track of how many times you told me that I was a third wheel to my huge twins, and that I needed to let loose and break away from the good girl image I try so hard to keep.

I eventually did. In fact, I clearly remember the night you played my unplanned wing girl. It was at this shabby bar along Xavierville Avenue. The boy I liked was in love with you, but you had a boyfriend at the time. Even if when I was absolutely certain that my juvenile infatuation would lead to nowhere, you still made something happen between us. It lasted for about a minute and I went home feeling giddy that night, all thanks to you. Never did I imagine myself doing something like that in front of so many people I knew. Not without you acting on it and pulling me out of my shell like always.

Our friendship wasn’t always smooth-sailing but you never failed to find a way to resolve things and keep our friendship intact. I’ll never forget that day you spontaneously sat me down and apologized for everything that’s transpired between us. It was supposed to be a secret between the two of us. Particularly, you said that you were sorry for breaking girl code and that you would understand if I chose to distance myself from you. At first, I was extremely weirded out, and all I could think about was you overreacting and overestimating the extent in which I liked the boy, the same boy I liked who was now the person you were dating. I didn’t see it then, but this is what you wanted to say: I care about your feelings and I don’t want you to be hurt because of me. In truth, I should be the one saying sorry if I’ve ever made you feel like you didn’t deserve to be happy. But I honestly don’t blame you for capturing his heart. You make it so easy to love you.

The last time I saw you was at Starbucks the Monday before you died. You had no make-up on and you looked like you were blooming. Seeing you again was a breath of fresh air on that dreary morning, especially with the way your eyes lit up as you were telling me how much you enjoyed your work and master’s classes. More than anything, I was glad to know that you were finally happy. Before I left, you invited me to go to this party on Friday because you would be there. But I ended up not going and am now feeling the heavy impact of my decision. If only I had known sooner that it would be the last night you would ever have on Earth, I would have went in a heartbeat. Later on I find out you asked our friends to invite as much people as they could. It all makes sense now.

All I want to say is that I am extremely blessed and thankful to have known someone like you in this lifetime. I’ll say my final goodbyes to you soon. Too late for regrets now. I miss you and love you very much Bianca. Rest in peace.

Things I’m Thankful for

  1. Having your thesis advisor tell you that she sees drastic improvement your work.
  2. Late night Nihonbashitei runs with family at midnight.
  3. Receiving an unexpected birthday gift from your first and closest college friends- in the correct size and a style you like.
  4. My new grenade shaped lighter.
  5. A common hatred strong enough to form new bonds.
  6. Being told “I wish everyone were like you” after taking on something for the first time.
  7. The opportunity to experience what law school is like.
  8. Successfully bullshitting a presentation you crammed a night before in front of critical panelists.
  9. When your working friends spontaneously drop by your school and invite you to hang out.
  10. Filipino indie movie screenings at an accessible place and affordable price.
  11. An opportunity to bring down a group of people you’ve hated since day one.
  12. Bumping into your crush on days you didn’t expect to see him.
  13. When schedule clashes are resolved on their own, sparing you the necessity to choose which one to attend.
  14. Hugs so big they swallow you whole from people you love.
  15. Satiated yearnings for affection you’ve been craving for a while.
  16. The act of sitting down and writing a letter on paper.
  17. Coffee Bean’s tropical sunrise iced tea.
  18. Knowing you’re the class favorite.
  19. That feeling of smugness when you know you’re not the only one who feels this particular way.
  20. Newly cleaned sneakers.

I act all nonchalant but really it bothers me how

  1. At the back of my mind, I know you only agreed to eat out with me because you knew I’d be footing the bill. I didn’t want to assume the worst of you, but as soon as we got back to school you proved me right.
  2. All your encouraging words strike me as sorry attempts at making me feel less bad about my inability to write. None of my feedback is ever positive, just points of improvement, and don’t even try to say otherwise else be called a liar.
  3. Some people get away with acting cute without even actually doing shit, yet get full credit for others’ efforts.
  4. Regret is eating me from the inside now that it’s too late to reverse it. I knew shifting into a fine arts course was the biggest mistake I could ever make in college.
  5. The most effective way for me to feel better about myself is by comparing myself with people who have it worse and justify it because it’s done secretly.
  6. If given a chance, that I would be ready to give up on a cause I love and care about because of the dirty politics that comes with being a person in position.
  7. Despite 21 years of living, I still haven’t found a solid group of friends to call my barkada and don’t think I’ll ever find them.
  8. Pathetically insecure I am about my outward appearance because of the fact that I’ve never had a boyfriend or anyone seriously court me.
  9. You always complain about being unrecognized, that you’re tired of being so kind, yet reject the love that reaches out to you.
  10. I am writing about these repressed feelings like it’s no big deal.

Senior year is taking its toll on me. I’ve barely been stressed out throughout my stay in college. But I can’t even put into words how emotionally taxing these past few months have been. Give me a break. I need a breather. Someone to talk to would be nice but knowing me, I never speak up when I’m bothered emotionally because I don’t want to be a bother and I sincerely mean it- don’t take this as passive aggression. Feelings can be dismissed, life can’t. This blog is my only refuge.

Beautiful woman

Today during another interesting discussion about Socrates’ play entitled Meno, the main point of inquiry was the source of virtue. To further explain it our professor gave a simple example and asked us where blueness could be found. He said we could see blue in our school lanyards, our clothes, but there is no one thing that we can point to as the source of blue. That got me thinking. At first I thought it was the sky or sea but then realized that they were reflections of each other. Right after he raised another similar example concerning beauty. Same inquiry. What I didn’t expect was when he called me a beautiful woman. Just when I was beginning to think I fully understood the lesson the thought that ran through my mind was the feeling of not knowing. Didn’t know if he was serious, how he meant it, if he even meant it, what it was supposed to mean, and if it was appropriate that I secretly felt giddy about it. Nobody’s ever called me that before, at least not in the way I wanted.

It was around 11:20 in the morning when Sam and I decided to come up to the department to wait until it was time for oral exams, only to find out that our professor was nowhere to be found. We didn’t expect that especially because he gave cuts for every tardy we had. Allison’s been prolonging her agony for twenty minutes since we arrived. To kill time, we resorted to peeping inside his private office like it was a forbidden realm us mere students were suddenly given access to. There was an open laptop, a neon green lightning cord, rows and rows of books, but what stood out the most was a navy blue couch with pillows and a blanket that gave the academic nook a homey touch. Along with his name plate, stickers from the foreign universities he attended continents away were plastered on the glass window, as if to say I’ve gotten my doctorate, earned the right to have my own place and to control your time, so now you wait here until I finish the conversation that dragged on at the cafeteria longer than expected. Pictures and selfies were taken to commemorate the case of the missing teacher and the brief moments of lightness that alleviated the nervousness we were all probably feeling before the ten minutes that would soon define thirty percent of our grade started to elapse.

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Can you steal something that is rightfully yours? I once had a voice, a voice that was taken away under the premise that much more would be taken away from me if I used it. Now I ask: was it really seized or was it surrendered, was it willingly or with hesitation? The internal dialogue that occurs within me whether to speak up or remain quiet, to identify as minority or not, has gone on and on a million of times in the hopes of finally coming to an epiphany but it has only brought me deeper and deeper into the abyss that is my cowardice. Times I felt like Ariel from the Little Mermaid; she can only choose one: to talk or walk, when I didn’t need to: I could eat my cake and have it too, yet chose to remain mute. Behind my back, my mother asked my younger sister who behind her back asked me if I was indeed such to which I replied in my mind with questions of why this was being brought up, if it really mattered, even if I already knew the answers to them. I had every opportunity to answer the question but the dull sound of the electric fan in our silent room did instead.

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For you to suspect a rumor’s subject of being its fountainhead says plenty about what you really think of me. Both of us are aware of the power of words. I know you’re upset about what it’s done, but what happens now? We were associated long before the both of you were. Indirectly calling me out for something I haven’t confirmed I did or didn’t do just shows your devotion, or should I say obsession with this megalomaniac you don’t even realize, indeed has the upper hand- something you claim to have, and willingness to trample a friendship we both thought was genuine, at least I did. Tell me if you think it was worth it. Sure, it hurt you, it hurt him, but have you considered it hurt me the most?


It’s weird, how I know how it feels like to be treated like a daughter-in-law when I’ve never had a boyfriend. We were both taught in class that each action has an intrinsic meaning and sometimes I  worry our friendship doesn’t follow that principle. Your parents break the boundaries you’re supposed to, and while it’s flattering they’re willing to do that, I wonder what you’d be willing to do for me. This poses the question: where do I really stand with you? Would you at least answer that? If you’re worried I’m expecting anything, or that I’d get hurt, don’t. Some clarity from you is the only thing I want. This is not a joke.


We’ve both identified as the betrayer and the betrayed with respect to our favourite book but something you don’t know is that in our case, the roles have been reversed without malicious intent. Plenty people know the story and I’m surprised it hasn’t reached you yet, given we’re in the same social circles. Times I wish I could just come clean, but as you’ve said, one wrong move can cost you everything. In fact, you’ve written about loss so eloquently I know you’d empathize, but I’m scared you won’t forgive me. I could choose to make the confession once we graduate from college; we’d probably laugh it off then, but what if things don’t turn out that way and regret ends up eating me alive?


The funny thing is that you’ve antagonized me without others knowing and you think you’ve won everyone over. I’ll give credit where it’s due, you know how to play the game of power but you’re forgetting your opponent is someone better at it.  Too bad, because you’ll need the looks to pull that winning move off. We all know I’m the innocent Chinese good girl who’s both the mom and baby of our friend group. Some of the naivete has worn off, but nothing too drastic to change my general perception. Believe me, while Math isn’t my strongest suit, I do know how to calculate my moves. Now, let me ask you again: do you really want to pick a fight? Because if that’s what you prefer, I’ll take it public and see how you fare.