Rude Awakenings: The Hunter and the Hunted

Honestly, I was prepared to dislike you the moment you walked towards me. I didn’t know that that momentous encounter would change my fate forever. It’s crazy, I know but I cannot help but tell you that I am now obsessed.

I don’t know if it started with how I immediately disliked you. I hated your unkempt self. I hated how you seemed to lack any grooming skills. You were clean-smelling but that was not enticing at all. You were simply someone who won’t be able to hold my interest for very long.

Unfortunately, I had already paid for you and decided to give you a try. You could never satisfy me that night. And as you cried on my lap, I couldn’t help but be moved by your tears. “It’s not your fault!” I said, trying to console you. Yet you still cried your silent tears despite my best efforts. When you looked up at me with your dewy brown eyes, I saw to the depths of your soul. Then I began to be awed at the tears that looked like sparkling diamonds on your long lashes. Or the freckles that glistened all along your tear tracks. Or the quivering lips that, even if pursed together, still remained so soft and kissable.

When I first saw your face, I didn’t know that it would lead me to this. Months after that first encounter, here I am following your tracks. Sniffing out your scent. Staking out your habitat. Learning your habits. I have done all that and yet it is still not enough. I thirst for your company and so I seek you. Time and time again. Always on the lookout for any glimpse of you.

Today, I refused to follow you around. Today, I did not listen to my urges. Today, I decided to free you. It is the nature of the hunter to kill his prey. I did not want to kill this obsession of you by satisfying it to the fullest.

Then at a different bar. Across a different dance floor, I felt your presence. Then I saw your piercing stare. I decided to turn tail and run. Run away from you and my obsession. You. My obsession. This happened several different times at different places with different people. I was always caught unawares by your stare. You were haunting me. I was being hunted.

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It is interesting how my writings surprise me. Truth is, this story was inspired by a burger that I ate for lunch yesterday. I hated it when I saw it because the price was SO exhorbitant, being a little over about US$3 (and that is JUST for the burger, no drink). To make it worse, it had a side serving of the ugliest and greasiest fries in existence. Then it was topped off by the banana-ketchup-and-mayonnaise nightmare that I just hate but most of my friends love it. Basically, I don’t like mayonnaise and I just wish that they didn’t assume that I would even touch that atrocious sauce by pouring a generous amount over the greasy fries. I think I ate about five pieces, with the sauce crap. I really hated the fries, but the burger! Oh that burger… Oh that BURGER! It was simply ORGASMIC. Which really surprised me! I love a pleasant surprise. I thought, okay for this surprising delicious burger, that was worth it.

Then a story started forming in my head. Now, I can’t believe the other story (nonfiction this time) that this piece had reminded me of. I am not particularly proud of the memories or the experience but I guess, if you’ve done something in life, it will come out. One way or another, the secrets will be revealed. Although I didn’t reveal much here–I think that I revealed a lot more to the memory than I was every willing to remember.

Strange Commutes

Have you ever been to the Philippines? Have you ever ridden a jeepney (formally called public utility jitneys or PUJs)? For most Filipinos, riding a jeepney is a regular occurrence that doesn’t even bear a second thought. However, we all know that each jeepney ride is unique in the sense of the things that you notice, the things that you do and the things that happen. Whether it was an annoying seatmate, cramped spaces or heavy traffic a single ride is an experience worth going through for itself.

Unemployment

Clutching the white folder and the red plastic envelope in my fist, I could not care less about ruining what was in my hand. I gripped the handle above me and tried to hide my face. I was hiding my face because I am crying.

I see a woman across from me. She looks sympathetic. She’s the only one who knows that I’m crying. All the rest are minding their own business. I want to rip her judging eyes out so that she can stop staring. I’m grateful for my restraint that tears are not falling. However I know that my eyes are watering up…and that staring woman is making it worse!

Sitting in front of me, judging me. God I hate her. I stared back down at my hand and I see that goddamned white folder again. Along with my red plastic envelope. The envelope contains my life and the white folder is the ticket to my dreams. Unfortunately, the plane to the dream had crashed and there’s nothing I can do to save it.

That’s why I’m crying. And that’s why that woman keeps staring. She knows. Fortunately, she’s the only one who knows. And I don’t know her. So she doesn’t matter. Not really. But she knows. Who cares if she knows? I don’t!