Houston we have a problem

*Among the permanent and temporary pieces displayed at Aphro Living, these framed ones by the entrance has piqued my interest since I first visited the gallery and in subsequent visits. I do love me some spaceman art. Haha! If you do drop by, try the slide. 

Timeless art always possesses the possibility of being timely.

Back in 2014, Emmanuel Santos exhibited some of these pieces in Immanent Geographies, a collection of both topographic and social landscapes by various Filipino artists. This featured familiar locations with stark twists.

Second Earth imagines a hyperreality where an astronaut finds himself in local terrain, however displaced and even out of place in these spaces—of all spaces—but the outer.

I’m partial to astronomical subjects 👽🚀🛰 and postmodern contexts 🤓 yet there’s a grimness to these that make me a little uncomfy but I can’t ignore it.

There’s also a bit of Foucault’s heterotopia in his work, as the astronaut searches for his place in a world that’s comprised of nature, the virtual, and what’s in between. This is relevant in our tech age that propels itself into a progress that could spell self annihilation with no signs of slowing down.

But what of children that wish to stay grounded and mounted to preserving life on the blue green ball of life? Earth born and earth bound dreamers 🌏🌍🌎

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Persisting I

*Passed by the Art Elements Asian Gallery weeks ago with my parents and we discovered Norlie Meimban. Boy would I have loved to take home a piece or have something commissioned. Given his animation background, his style is a lovely mix of techniques and themes that give it a very postmodern look. Would love to meet him someday and see more of his work and how else it can evolve

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that centerpiece!

I’ve been so fixated on his series of unbroken motion depicting ideas of perhaps of a persisting self. I’ll always be curious about the temporal and the causal facets of continuity. Much to read on. Art that makes you think, a feast for the eyes, and food for thought, y’know 😊


Featured images: © Norlie Meimban

Run the mile

schtudThere’s an impossible list of things to do before the paper of papers is due. If not for a fear of being intellectually inadequate as in not smart enough, it’s an even greater test of my discipline and ability to stay focused. I can submit a mediocre thing, but I’m not sure if I want to.

For the longest time I’ve been told and it’s occurred to me as well that I’m unfit and it’s often felt I wasn’t cut out for this. I may have taken a zillion detours to the many things I’ve wanted to do most in college and even in philosophy, but here I am and there’s an opportunity to make a little dent in our theories of thought. And maybe I’ll surprise myself.

You can go the distance,
you can run the mile,
you can walk straight through hell with a smile

Eco-promise

*For my last general class which is also my last science class ever, I had to make a commitment to the environment. We were required to do one of those take a picture with a cardboard message thing, post it on social media, along with an explanation. Not a fan of that so I just kept it private on Facebook, haha then took a screenshot. To my surprise I ended up taking the project a little more seriously because this is one of the social/global issues/movements I feel more strongly about. (Thinking of making a separate post to share some of my favorite clips on the topic and another one to expound on this maybe) This was the rushed essay I typed on my phone so forgive the weird formal reflection tone and my philo professors had been talking bout Aristotle so much that day so he got squeezed into this.

Lately I’ve been realizing much of our crimes against the environment, big and small, as a group or even just as individuals, are done mostly out of bad habit. Aristotle did say that to know the good is to do the good and that’s how it is to be virtuous. It’s funny how we already know what’s good for the environment yet we still out of pure stubborn habit, continuously practice otherwise. Unlike responsibilities and obligations in school and work, correcting these bad environmental habits don’t necessarily have to mean boring scientific methods. Much of what I know about tiny concrete ways to save the environment today comes from social media actually. It’s taught me that a lot of the process has to do with small acts.

We don’t necessarily have to live in a bubble and produce 0 waste just to save the environment and reduce that size ozone layer carbon footprint. I think it’s all about continuously pursuing daily activities just with a few curves here and there in terms of our lifestyle. The way in which we go about things as normal as choosing what food to buy, what soap to use, where to throw the trash can make a great deal a difference if done in large and more regular quantities. Getting rid of bad environmental habits all boils down to daily choices.

If anything, so much of us are limited to old ways because we aren’t presented with choices or better alternatives. I’ve actually been pretty stoked about moving towards this direction. It’s a direction that lets me choose local, choose organic, choose homemade, and choose sustainable. I hope Manila becomes more and more open to these types of alternatives for the sake of everyone and everything. It’s a cycle after all.

When we choose local and organic, it becomes an act of support. There’s usually a group of people behind these, which we end up supporting, hence sustainability. We support the brilliant risk-takers that invested in the non mainstream for the bigger picture. We support indigenous tribes, we support jobs and similar environmentally aligned projects. We support an old culture and perhaps even this new one—of sustainable living.

I’m happy to have learned online that there are a lot of communities around the world with people who in their own creative and very personal ways have gone back to the land. Whatever that means. Whether it’s manually brewing locally grown coffee beans at home instead of drinking out of that plastic or paper take-out cup or going off the grid like Alexander Supertramp, living off flowers and poisonous plants, this lifestyle is open to everyone. We all use each others’ help, and so can the Earth.

Some celebrities like Jared Leto and thousands of photographers in Northern America and Europe travel on foot or bus to capture the beauty of natural parks and wildlife. I love people like Mark Ruffalo for other reasons including how he uses his influence and milks amount of celebrity to spread the word about the things he believes in. This promotes the beauty that might motivate others to maintain all these wonders or to even do as they have and see it for themselves. I’d like to see for myself. It’s a collective, beautiful effort to make these alternatives and opportunities available to everyone. I’m beginning to see it as less of an obligation to the Earth. I think there might be no better way to live than by being one with majestic city skycrapers in urban jungles and the unrivaled magic and mystery of mountains, and maybe the wolf pack howl from a safe distance.

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don’t mind the blurry camera, awful lighting, and the I’ve been awake for 48 hours-look haha I was rushing to finish this before Friday and it was a long two days

We ought to know where we stand… In a pretty blue green, getting real old kinda world. So heal. Make. Save. And when what’s already perfect in itself is standing right in front of you, take a pretty picture and leave it for someone else to discover. Do the good. ✌🏻

Flowers for your thoughts

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was supposed to do something else for class and I ended up doing this

Safe to say my classmates and I have been thrown outside of our comfort zones for the rest of the term because of contemporary epistemology class. I’ll admit that although it’s been so daunting and stressful, the sort-of-Socratic method-entailing-actual-hard-work kind of teaching style will inevitably be for our own good and growth, hence you’ve got yourself some sun flowers for all that thinking and analyzing.

While reviewing the philosophy textbook for senior high school, one of the reviewers quipped that the book is not an easy read. She worries that teachers and students might not understand it. A colleague replied that unfortunately, there is no better way to teach or do philosophy. Though philosophy students generally think that philosophy is difficult, I think they often forget why it is so. It is not because of the language or the concepts, it’s because philosophy deals with the very realities we struggle with everyday, sometimes unconsciously, for others more deliberately. Philosophy is a loving struggle with life and its questions. Therein lies its value. So perhaps the best way to begin is to have a loving struggle with the text.

—M.A. Dacela, my contemporary epistemology professor

May the struggle prove to be fulfilling!


Featured image in collage artwork: © Chris Kolupski (2008) for his amazing representation of The School of Athens on canvas

The Sunday Currently Vol. 4

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R E A D I N G up on some companies before I write them, introduction to epistemology when I find the discipline, and more importantly Frog and Toad and the Self by The Atlantic aaaand I finally got to catch up on the previous issues of Northern Living & Southern Living, my favorite local publications earlier over lunch

W R I T I N G individual cover letters and editing my resume in my spare time

L I S T E N I N G to Change of Heart by The 1975, my favorite from their new album and a follow up to my other favorite song from the previous album, Robbers

T H I N K I N G about biking or walking around the village with Dad in a bit. It’s been a daily exercise the last few weeks with my parents

S M E L L I N G the failure of my daily skincare, sensing the calm before the storm of allergic reactions lol. I’m smelling a very temporary lotion that I splash around exposed areas for when I jog later. Nonetheless the bugs still tick me off even as I move but I can’t find any effective insect repellent around the house. Also smelling the pale yet distinct chemicals and artificiality of cakey and probably expired makeup in my bathroom. I had just attempted practicing on my face once again but I ended up looking like… let’s just say, nothing close to the YouTube makeup tutorials. I was feeling really icky after 10 minutes so I wiped it out with some remover wipes I happen to be likely allergic to, so I’m smelling the residue of that too, haha

W I S H I N G for a longer summer break (not gonna happen)

H O P I N G to paint later? To take my online course on collage art more seriously heehee. And that the incoming term in school won’t be so painful to get through or anywhere near as painful to get through as the last one

W E A R I N G the super faded college PE shirt my mom borrowed from I-dont-know-who years ago and we never returned and I fortunately got away with never buying a uniform for my PE classes, haha. Now it’s really worn out and comfy

L O V I N G a very funny Hugh Grant who can’t speak in an American accent in Mickey Blue Eyes, my parents, lattes, rosey cheeks, and the color lavender all of a sudden

W A N T I N G to look like that PONY makeup Korean girl in these videos hahaha how how how, plus a bigger bicycle perhaps

N E E D I N G to have the discipline to send out some applications and to learn photoshop forrealz

F E E L I N G a summer hangover just because who wants to go to school, right? The medium sized Iced Breve from Seattle’s Best take effect quite calmly

C L I C K I N G through Hugh Grant videos and some sites so I can properly understand what a breve is just out of curiosity

The Sunday Currently is a blog link-up by siddathornton.

From behind the typewriter

So much of my dislike and disappointment towards my own previous blog posts are mostly because of the scattered-ness and negativity of it all. It started to seem like an Aidee Ever Downwards spiral, actually. I have my reasons behind each and every post but I’m not proud of it all the time. I wondered if I was just always sad or something in real life. I then realized I only do a majority of my writing on the blog when I’m really really sad. I’ve had a habit for years to only do a whole lot of writing when I’m down in the dumps like an angsty teenager awake past 2am. Although we all hear a lot about how the best artists are always depressed and cuckoo. I have to admit that negative emotions seem like a powerful fuel to make, write, and create, but my lack of creating when I’m happy is out of both fear and carelessness.

I can reason by saying, I don’t write when I’m living out my happiest moments simply because I’m busy living them out. But really, I don’t write about the happier bits of my life because I feel like jotting them down at the end of the day just might jinx em. I have long feared admitting simple joys because that might just spoil all the goodness in it. In fact I just let moments happen to me, let them pass like any normal individual, and look back fondly in silence without realizing they’re really ever gone.

It might have been my task to gruelingly capture the gone-ness in my life. I did this to both hold on and let go. And it might continue to be so, but I would like to add a new task to even more challengingly capture the nowness of my life. For years I’ve dreamed of writing bits of a Murakami-like novel in my head because I seemed to fulfill every formula of his lead characters: sad, regretful, never really getting over anything, and absolutely flawed, usually above 40. I’m not yet above 40 though. I thought I had a fair amount of experiences that would vouch for a gripping novel filled with prose about nature, city life, and a love you’ll never get over. That certainly made up for the crappy experiences themselves.

Sadness had therefore become power. I would collect the broken pieces of everything I’ve ever broken and gotten broken for a rainy day at home. I would type away to make magic out of magic that’s gone by. I can resurrect the gone-ness in front a blank screen. I can turn the goodbyes I lived through into a fictional hello and fiction gives you the power to add a little twist and maybe decide to give everything alternative endings or no endings at all.

But I’ve realized I’m only ever so sad about all that’s ever gone away because they for the time being made me so happy. Otherwise, I typically wouldn’t care. I have only been in so much pain because I have known so much joy too. The only difference on paper or rather on this blog, is that I didn’t try just as hard to capture happiness while it encompassed me.

I promise to tell some happier light-hearted stories too. I’ve given it some thought and figured since I’ve gone through worse, it might not be such a bad thing to write about little joys too. It’s just as tough to be truthful about the good and the bad equally. But what’s the truth if it’s not a lot of it or all of it at least? I will strive to create from a balance of my many truths.

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sprouting from behind the typewriter