Wow, long time no write. It's been a weird month and a half for me; have been feeling that I'm always behind, always late, always running to catch up. "How is that different from the past decade or so of your life, Luis?" a voice from the balcony queries. Well, first of all -- security, throw that bastard out of the theater. That'll teach him to interrupt my monologue. Where was I? Oh yeah -- late.
It's not just deadlines, and it's not just a matter of taking on too much work, both regular and freelance. I have a fair idea of my capabilities, and I know I could be doing even more than I'm doing now, and doing it well -- I guess I've been blocked, or low-level depressed, or something. There are times when I feel that there's nothing worth getting out of bed for, but this is usually coupled with the strong sense that staying in bed isn't a fantastically attractive option either. As you know, Kidlat and I figured that it was probably a matter of not doing the truly fulfilling, creative work we're meant to be doing. Writing for TV and magazines and such is great, and financially rewarding (relatively speaking, anyway), but it's been literally years since I finished a short story I was satisfied with, for example. So anyway, I'm jotting this down in this semi-public forum so that, a year or so from now, if friends of mine who have read this entry realize that I haven't come out with a new book or two yet, they have my permission to whack me upside the head.
The AMP benefit gig on Katipunan last Saturday was great -- remember that place we went to before, to watch Hellbender? It's even grottier now, but that somehow added to the rocking-ness of the event. Instead of sitting beside a fast-food stall a few tables away from the stage, we were on our feet, and practically in the faces of the performers. I could, for example, have reached out and gently pushed the somewhat out-of-it Ely Buendia over. Not that I would ever do such a thing, he he. It was great fun to hang out with Margie, Marnie, Jovan and her boyfriend Nico (master of the matter-of-fact observation: for example, "Nakakahiya kayo"). Seems like it's been too long since I've been to a gig, much less gone to a gig just to enjoy myself and not cover it for the magazine and not worry about anything.
Highlights for me included the sets by Narda (all fairly new, non-EP material -- really looking forward to the first full-length!), Boy Elroy (lead singer/diminutive bundle of pop-punk energy Conrad was approached after the gig by a woman who offered to adopt him; he declined, explaining that "I already have a mother"), and of course Sun Valley Crew, whooo! *does Sikatuna Village gang sign; busts a move* Finally got to talk to Ryan of SVC face to face; previous interactions for my MTV Ink piece were through texts and e-mail. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the Mongols finale -- as you know, their album didn't really grab me, and I was less than thrilled by their performance at the last Summer Slam -- but that night, they tore into their songs with an energy and a fierce joy that was infectious, and now I may have to dig out my copy of Buddha's Pest for a reassessment.
Am also interested in the upcoming release from one of Mongols guitarist Jerome "Bunny" Velasco's other bands, Daydream Cycle. Saw those guys perform a couple of years ago, in Sanctum. And btw, in the coincidence department: earlier today, caught The Mongols on MYX. Even greater, non-Mongols-related coincidence: days after I submit a Delays CD review which compares them to one of my favorite bands from my misspent youth, The Reivers, Thor writes about The Reivers in his blog. Got all happy and excited reading his entry. It was like when I discovered that Jing Gaddi was also a fan of that absurd and obscure cartoon, Tomfoolery. Now I'm sure that neither Tomfoolery nor The Reivers are figments of my fevered, pulsating imagination. I couldn't have dreamed up anything as good as Saturday anyway. Not to mention the collected works of Edward Lear.
4 days ago