A King Stays a King

I seat myself by the window, where the sun is casting warm rays through the panes. As I was sneaking glances in between my sips, I found the perfect candidate, the next victim for my writing scheme. I dug quickly into my gray purse to withdraw the journal, but to my misfortune, he fled with the winds; but I can write of him from memory.

 

He sat outside the coffee shop accompanied by what seems to be a cappuccino, given his age. He wore a cap: maroon, navy, and beige in color, and it read: A King Stays A King. He held his mobile phone under the table, his back arched, as if secluding himself from the group of loud ladies sitting nearby. A cigarette was muffled between his fingertips, and his face was barely visible, mysteriously hidden under that cap.

 

I’ve convinced myself that he must be in the final laps of his 20s, if not, early laps of 30s. I will search for him next Tuesday in the same spot I found him; I need to see him again to continue this unfinished draft.

 

But then I worry that I’ll not be able to know it’s him due to time and my forgetfulness. What if he wore a different cap? I’ll remember him. I’ll remember him from his bulged veins.

Tuesday. January 23, 2018. 11:38AM

 

A part of me thinks that he must be a Libra. I don’t know which part of him pulled me to continue gazing askance without a shame, but I loved studying him to what has felt like hours but in reality they were only a few minutes. Something about his beautifully-aged facial features appeared so comely in my eyes. There was this unspoken mystery that I was suddenly dying to decipher.

 

It seems to me that both him and I winded up here due to the same quarter-life crisis that spearheads us into lounging in cafes alone. I’ve convinced myself that we both held our addictions cupped in our palms, he, his cigarette, and I, my novel.

 

Were I to shed my skin bare, I’d admit that I’ve always held this captivation toward men of Mirdif. Every stolen glance and skip of a heartbeat took place in that thoroughfare that I’ve been swearing by since 2013. Every love at first blush occurred there, and I took what I knew so little of and wrote tirelessly until I became so mad in the head. So help me God with this one.

Tuesday. January 23, 2018. 4:49PM.

 

 

Do I keep this muse to myself? How will I find the words to describe someone I’d forgotten the shape of by now? But Gosh, I cannot stop thinking about him. Should I name him? Sigh, people-watching is perilous for a writer.

Wednesday. January 24, 2018. 6:40PM

 

So perhaps excitement dragged my feet here again, or perhaps I am officially the habitue of this coffee place?

 

I promise you that it was my pen that was frantic for another scan. I promise you that the sun was itching to peck your skin sun-kissed. I promise you that the ashtray was missing your cigar debris too. But I? I wasn’t looking for you; I promise.

 

Thursday. January 25, 2018. 11:17AM

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This Red Journal

I dread the day this red journal winds up in someone’s hands for I’ve written unconscious, tipsy on coffee and dark chocolate. Every trace of doubt and every glimmer of feeling were recorded here; some published, and some humiliating to be shared. The majority of the pages have secret initials adorned by cloud doodles and broken stanzas.

 

As the years passed by, I wrote with the journal half-closed, in fear the words might jump to a stranger sitting next to me in the coffee shop. Anxious dump on blank pages merged with unexplained infatuations toward men older than I am. I pity myself for putting those emotions in print, when I could have talked to someone about my undying phases.

 

As much as this journal tugs at the heart, I am afraid someone might rummage through the pages one day only to discover that they didn’t know me well. I am afraid they’d be surprised by the identity I hid deep within my uncensored entries.

 

I fear they’d beat themselves up for not decoding my sighs soon enough. I fear they’d detest themselves for deciphering the loudness of my stares too late. I worry they’ll embrace the journal, hoping those permanent words could rebirth me.

 

Hold tight onto this red journal; let it elongate my memory when I leave.

Come to my happy place?

Let me paint you my happy place; it’s technically not one place, but it’s a fusion of tiny guilty pleasures. Living minimally has kept my bitsy heart so full, quick to saturate with a sip of coffee or a hint of a passing cloud.

 

And though my unintentional attempts at sentimentalizing the small specks on this planet always induced pity and sympathy, that hasn’t stopped me from following the clouds with two cameras wrapped around my neck.

 

Gripping my cup of cappuccino with both hands, inhaling its scent and warmth, brings me an indescribable joy. Browsing the aisles of a stationery store and scribbling on loose paper until I find the perfect black pen is a tiny victory to me.

 

Putting my book on the side and petting my kittens is just pure happiness; life doesn’t get any better than this. My God, their fluffiness and their small legs as they skip around the grass is a sight so pure and precious that my heart inadvertently shatters and gushes with empathy.

 

Happiness is jolting across my bedroom with my favorite songs on both good and bad days because dancing always heals. Dancing is my therapy and my escape.

 

Happiness is reflecting and taking time away from my day to appreciate the friendshipversaries, the birthdays, the former fall season, and how life was on this particular date two years ago. It’s wearing makeup after neglecting it for a week or switching back to an old bag and recalling the thought process behind purchasing it.

 

I find joy in laughing away life’s troubles and keeping files in archives in case a former friend decided to come back to my life because there’s room for you; there’s always room for you in my heart.

 

My guilty pleasure is buying a new journal. My guilty pleasure is running out of space for my new poetry books. My guilty pleasure is turning red because I love feelings and I love emotions and I love love.

 

My guilty pleasure is the flower crown section at Forever 21. It’s my seven-year dedication and loyalty toward Costa Coffee for all the memories and conversations that took place there.

 

I love singing, and I could spend the rest of my life just singing my heart out, in bathrooms, kitchens, even as I walk up and down the aisles of my local grocery store. It’s pausing in the middle of shopping upon realizing that the store is playing a song of your favorite underrated Youtube artist.

 

My happiness is trying on a dress for no valid reason, and setting up my camera on a tripod to take pictures for, again, no reason. It’s that swift run to make it in frame after setting the DSRL on self-timer. It’s commemorating every passing second and putting a timestamp to every moment, even when people question your strange urge to take photos of everything.

 

The weirder the shoes, the more I am intrigued. The macho the clothes, the more I am driven to purchase them. That’s me; that’s my delight. That’s my happy place.

 

Happiness is stopping to smell the flowers, people-watching on a harbor, and living life as if you’re on a never-ending honeymoon with yourself. Where’s your happy place?

Why I’m obsessed with blogging

It’s 11:50PM (well already November by the time I post this). I am lying in bed, immersed in my pillow; one eye closed and two hands typing on the phone.

 

I was tallying my blog posts a few minutes ago, and the number somewhat disappointed me. I was expecting more from myself, and it got me thinking: why am I so obsessed with my blogs?


Given that the majority of my readers come from social media, it’s very apparent to them how obsessed I truly am, and a part of me decided to run here to explain.
This blog, along with my shared blog, is entirely created, designed, and run by me for me. And I became attached to it only recently, and I will elaborate on that soon.

 

This blog–believe it or not–was more than just a place to contain my word vomit. Within these published words, I felt liberated, heard, and understood by international readers. You can say I felt unstoppable because I got support from everyone and with every compliment, I just wanted to try harder and harder.

 

But my recent obsession stems from nothing but emptiness. It’s not views or validations that I seek. I come here–as sad as this may sound–to fill in the voids in my heart. I keep challenging myself to push 100 blog posts a year because what else can I do during my miserable unemployment? I swear it has kept me full, and sometimes even yearning for more.

 

This space is my very own product; I never hesitate to pronounce even the words I usually fear to speak. I am free here. The more I write, the more my mind is too busy to be overthinking about everything that’s wrong in my life.

 

I view this as nothing but a healthy obsession. I will never stop posting. This project is my baby. 

Mi Hermano featuring Mario Rodríguez

This blog post is a writing collaboration with fellow writer, Mario Rodríguez.

Mi hermano,

I am writing you today with a head dense with burdensome thoughts. What has the world come to, I ponder? I have noticed that kindness, unfortunately, has become a sly scheme, and shyness is sympathized. Talk is easy, music is provocative, and men are vile. Is that what you observe from your bedroom window too? It’s as if decency and courtesy are a foreign concept, but when you do come across a decent person, you can feel it in your bones that their cordiality maneuvers in a path of ulterior motives.

 

Kardeşim,

It’s a scary world we live in, isn’t it? It’s too advanced for my old soul that wishes technology only came in gradual doses. But I know, we’ve got vinyl record stores and antique boutiques in every town; however, it’s not the same tranquility. Somehow, even the beaches aren’t the same with color-matching teens posing in piers, conversing about utter nonsense, when the shore is gushing placid waves, and it urges for our silent admirations.

 

Akhi,

Even love is becoming a cheap term in this era. And God forbid you chose not to be a part of it, and suddenly you’re singled out from your group. The concept of love makes every bit of me tingle, and I bet it does for you too; except, I only want to admire it from afar. It’s not for me, it’s not the perfect timing for it either. My detestation for men only grows deeper by the day, which I heard offends your kind. You know it’s only a generalization, right? But in any case, do you get bombarded by that topic too? It’s quite the burden!

 

If I am ever hopeful, it’s God reassuring me that this is all normal and expected. But hey, at least we’re here, and we’re alive.

 

 

Algo es algo; menos es nada.

 

Yours respectfully,

Sophie.

 

 

Minha Irmã,

I question the course of this world in its near future. If the wickedness witnessed today is as bad as we both experience, there is no telling what is to come except that it will be worse. People become ridiculed for being respectful towards others and to themselves. Women too have adjusted to the foul way by knowingly using their appearance as a lure to the innocent few left on my side. I have learned to not pay attention and openly ignore good and bad gestures.

 

Meine Schwester,

It is a frightening globe we live in! I love the concept of technological inventions; although, electronics are the particular culprit to the rapid decadence of this world. The only places in which I find a remote sense of refuge are in the forests. The lack of others’ presence satisfies the sense of silence needed from the spoken atrocities of which you speak. Sitting on the rock near the pond in the middle of the night is how to get away. This is my oasis.

 

Moya Sestra,

Every day, I am the center of attention on the topic of solitude when I am with my friends. The idea of love is not understood by me. I see what people mean, but I believe myself to be incapable of love other than being at most a brother. Even then, I still wish to get away. All these relationships I witness seem to be about women taking advantage of their resources. This I find to be what barricades me behind the barbed wire that would enable me to want someone should it be taken down. I do understand that it is a generalization, but it happens so often as well. As for being bombarded by this topic, yes. And burden should be an understatement.

 

If this is what is to be expected indeed, then God may keep all his creation and leave me as I am. I am in no need of any of them.

 

Besser allein als in schlechter Gesellshaft.

 

With heartfelt sincerity,

Mario.