Monday, August 4, 2008

Life, last week

'seryoso itich': second row view, you get Prof Wong's glorious head. :)

My usual self is never really good with celebrating. I think I have this penchant for ‘delays’—delayed reactions, letting feelings sink in first, what have you. Im not really sure why (--yet! But Im getting there), but I think it has something to do with how I would like to project myself as—to myself (make believe) and to others (bad habit). I don’t want to be called an easy reveller—I don’t want to party while the rest of the world is not really doing well (guilt), and I tend to position myself in situations wherein I have to move on ‘right away’—‘I have other things to do’ chenes chervarlin. So, in short—I have this ‘I started a joke’ syndrome (the song)—I always keep my feelings delayed, with hopes that I won’t get all giddy and do something stupid—what the usual spur of the moment usually entitles people to. Okay, so enough of this psycho-analyse me (well, for the moment), because I was able to do two things that are just up my alley last week. And boy oh boy! It was heaven! Sa totoo lang, (to my non Tagalog readers, Im so sorry—but this is where you’ll have to indulge me with my Tagalog. Heh) hindi ako makapaniwala—para syang mini grammy’s (or oscar’s, or nobel prize, or gawad urian) para sa aketch, kasi I was able to conquer my fear (yes, Im not even referring to the event itself). Over the years kasi, para bang ang feeling ko ‘oo nga, lumaki yung mundo ko, pero naman—gusto ko rin namang maki-partake, mag contribute’. I mean, yes—Im here in Singapore, doing research and all those academic and international relations cherva, pero I can’t help it—I used to wish that I’d be more eloquent, more knowledgeable. Ako kasi, hindi ako magsasalita hangga’t hindi ako sigurado. And by sigurado, I mean alam ko yung sinasabi ko. May iba kasi, ewan ko, para may masabi lang. Some people can get away with it, pero haller—in less than a year in this industry, you can tell the difference between those who are just making conversation, and those who know what they’re talking about. And I don’t want to be known as that smart aleck ass who just love throwing in their weight in the guise of a ‘clever question’. That you can do in a class discussion, pero when it comes to a scholarly audience, it is way different. After my M.A. graduation, a new job and some bumps on the road, I had my confidence tarnishing more than ever. Walang practice, walang lahat—thats 2 years after graduation. As in mega low. While attending several conferences, I keep telling myself na kaya ko rin yon, and that I myself can be in front, setting a research agenda, answering questions thrown on the floor. Pero hanggang ganon nalang. So when I transferred to this new job (and after a few more life changing experiences), naisipan kong mag-all the way. Ang lukaret na ako, feeling ko kasi kelangang madami akong magawa ngayong taon kasi nga eh—well, mag iiba na ang buhay ko next year. O diba? Death row ang dating!

Nag submit ako ng abstract, hoping na i-aaprove yung balak kong pag aralan, tapos kahit kunin man lang ako na taga-panuod. My lucky day: na-conference presenter ako. Syempre, ang napili ko pang conference ay hindi pang graduate students (dahil hindi na naman ako nag-ga grad school). Kulang nalang atakihin ako sa puso nung nakita ko yung mga co-presenters ko. Parehong taga Hilagang Amerika. Shit—anu ba ang iniisip ko?? Yung 2 ay head na ng kanya kanyang departamento sa kanilang ‘OMG, sikat at kagandahang’ eskwelahan (okay, fine—Toronto U at UC Berkeley). Lahat sila ay mga PhD holders (meron din namang mga candidates palang. Naknangtokwa—as if that can make me feel beter) AT hindi pa ako tapos sa paper ko. So, ayun nga (taena, humahaba na itong entry ko)—in short, maganda ang kinalabasan ng presentation ko. Ehrm—magandang maganda. Nagustuhan nila yung conclusion ko, na para ba daw ni-set ko yung tone ng migration on a perspective na hindi gasgas. Na cite pa ang study ng lola nyo, na kulang nalang mahulog ako sa upuan nung narinig ko. Ayan. Kaya super thank you kay Lord, at sa lahat ng taong sumagot ng online sarbey ko.

Si Bb Zaide, si ako at si Resto Cruz (na malapit nang maging big time). 'Para tayong asa ibang bansa ah! duh.'

Sa mga bumatikos sa aking mga metodolohiya, mga pananaw, at naging praktis target ko (ikaw yon, Jay). Andun sa kwarto nung nag present ako ang mga hinahangaang iskolars ng rehiyon at ng buong mundo (Wong Gungwu, Shirlena Huang, Filomeno Aguilar, P Cassirino, Ho Kong Chong), at sa totoo lang, hindi ako nanliit. Alam ko ang sinasabi ko siguro. Matatapos ko na ang unang draft ng sinusulat ko, at mailalagay syang working paper sa ARI. Feeling ko naka quota na ako for this year, kaya aasikasuhin ko na yung kasal ko this time (wahaha). Eto nga pala ang mga bagay na nagbigay ‘power’ sa akin nung mga nakaraang araw. Hindi ko na isasama dito sa listahan si Bb Zaide dahil mukhang hindi sya matutuwa kung ihehelera ko sya sa isang uglydoll at zapatos. Pero salamat din, Bb Zaide. Isa kang mahusay na taga pektyur at time keeper. Gudlak sa kangaroos.



ROLL CALL:

kay uglyworm. Madalas ko syang bisitahin dun sa may anthropology shop sa may amin, at hindi ko sya mabili dahil mas gus2 ko sana yung mas maliit na version nya. In fairness, sa kanya ako unang natuwa dun sa hilera ng uglydolls na naka display (sabi ko pa, ay, amoeba! tanga tanga), kaya naman todo na touch ako nung nabasa ko yung description nya (pramis, nakakatawa silang lahat):
UGLYWORMS:
Uglyworms want power. The power to do great and wonderful things.
They want your power. You know that thing you do? Uglyworms want to do that. And you know those things you think you can’t do? Uglyworms now you CAN do those things. They think you’re bluffing. Oh what power!

Some Uglyworms are sneaky. Some are crafty. All are hungry...For knowledge...Like where do you keep the carrot cake? How long before ice cream goes bad? Knowledge is power.
I was going through my ‘self doubt’ mode nung nabasa ko sya, kaya medyo naluha ako. Slight lang naman. I know-- Im such a hopeless sap. Im so getting an uglyworm asap.

ADIK SEYO:
I ‘gifted’ myself an Onitsuka Tiger shoeses. Yay! I call it a ‘preemptive measure’, an alternative to eating 'cake' (I have this weird notion na you should give anyone a cake, bad news man sya or good news). Hindi pa ako tapos sa paper ko that time, at parang hindi na ako ginaganahan (matapos kong tumawag ng last minute sa ARI, at sabihing male late NA NAMAN ang paper ko. Tsk tsk). The smaller processes like making tables and formatting references were slowing me down, kaya naman naisip ko, ‘Kung ako si Flo (ng Dinner Dash), or si Belle (ng Belle’s Spa), ano ang gagawin ko??’ (tantarantannnn...) bumili ka ng sapatos, para mapabilis ka. Logical!


at syempre, sa boss kong si BY. She's a genius. Without her support (and suggestions), I wouldn't have made a coherent ekek. thanks, boss.

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