Can't What Now!?  

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This isn't exactly the spectacular literary comeback that I was hoping for, but posting from a mobile phone on a dinky wireless connection is not one of my brightest ideas. Frankly, I was just checking to see if blogging-on-the-go was even worth the effort. The typing experience does leave much to be desired, but unfortunately, my computer's sort of in pieces right now. I love that old bucket of bolts, but just like yours truly, it's far too old and too tired to be of any significant use now. 

Well, that's my excuse.

The Hunger Pains  

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God I missed this. 

It's been quite a while since I last wrote, owing largely to the fact that there wasn't really much to write about; nothing I would personally consider publish-worthy at least. But for those who care, I've recently quit my job for reasons I am not at liberty to publicly discuss. Besides, I'm sick of talking about it anyway. And I've been happily bumming around ever since, although that empty wallet in my back pocket and this growling stomach hints at another life of humdrum subservience in my very near future.

Anyway, I've picked up on an old habit. I have started reading again. I figured, since JK Rowling's new book isn't coming out any time soon, and I haven't illegally obtained my copy of Dan Brown's latest page-flipper yet - a situation which will shortly be corrected - I decided to run my fingers through the virtual pages of Suzanne Collin's hit in PDF format, The Hunger Games.

Truth be told, If I could put the book down I would, but I couldn't. Not because I'm enthralled by the fast-paced action the book has to offer, but for a less thrilling reason: I just have to see it through to the end. That doesn't mean I like the book, in fact I would describe my feelings towards it as somewhere between slightly amused to utterly revolted.

You see, I hated the Twilight saga with a passion even before I read a single word of it. Judgmental as it is, I've seen plenty of movie trailers and read enough book reviews to know that "the saga" is just oozing with something I'm not too fond of - teen romance. I see Twilight as the unholy spawn of Underworld and Sweet Valley High. Yakfest written all over it. All you little girls out there may hate me now, but you'll thank me when you get older and eventually grow out of your teeny werewolf fantasies. 

So when I started reading The Hunger Games, I was at a point then where I had little to no expectations about this particular trilogy. Big mistake. From the odd little bits of information I've gathered, The Hunger Games was supposedly a story about survival, and fighting against oppression. And yes, it was. What I didn't expect was that the whole action-adventure scheme revolved around a sappy love triangle between sixteen year-olds. I mean, everything draws from how the heroine, Katniss Everdeen, struggles to find direction, and a sense of certainty about how she felt towards two strapping young dudes, Peeta and Gale

First of all, who gives names such as Peeta, Haymitch, or Cinna to their kids? And to be honest, reading the whole thing feels like reading Katniss' diary because it is written from a first-person perspective, thus spewing heart-stopping lines such as:

Impulsively, I lean forward and kiss him, stopping his words. This is probably overdue since he's right, we are supposed to be madly in love. It's the first time I've ever kissed a boy, which should make some sort of impression I guess, but all I can register is how unnaturally hot his lips are from the fever.

For crying out loud! They were in a fight for their lives, and the boy had a freakin' fever! And Suzanne Collins thought it was obviously the perfect time for a first kiss. This more or less confirmed my suspicion that The Hunger Games was nothing more than a teen romance novel cleverly disguised as an action flick. This might be one of the few times I'll ever like the movie more than I liked the book. 

For those who loved the book though, I offer my sincerest apologies for my rant. Don't get me wrong, The Hunger Games does make for good reading, but it doesn't place high in my top ten list of reads. I'd sooner wipe my ass with it if it weren't in PDF format, and I know I'd look stupid wiping my derriere with my phone or my laptop. But as I said, I'll give it a fair shake and I'll read it all the way through to book 3, Mockingjay. Who knows? I might even like it. I'll just be ready with my barf bag for now I guess. 

Oh God they're kissing again!

Out of the Frying Pan and Into the Fire  

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This is another one of those moments when I find myself caught between a rock and a hard place, and all I could do right now is bury myself in tacky cliches and idiomatic expressions as a way of telling myself "I told you so!".

So here I am, again in an uncomfortably familiar situation. It's that time of the year when I once again look at my career options, and with the utmost disgust and self-loathing I go "Ugh, not again.". Things at work have gone from bad to just plain awful, and I am once again staring down that fork in the road. One path has a sign telling me to stay, while other one says go. To be honest I'm inclined to take the latter. I'd like to believe that I am not the kind of guy that just calls it quits when the going gets tough, but I honestly feel like l may no longer have a choice.

What I do at work is relatively easy, so it's not like I'm completely overwhelmed with stress and stuff. What bums me out - or should I say, one of the things that bum me out - is the repetitive nature of this business. Sure, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to explain why some old lady's cable bill went up this month, or why  some sweaty perv can't watch their smutty adult pay-per-view, but to do it over, and over, and over, and over every single day can seriously burn one out. Maybe I just bore too easily, or that I'm simply a lazy old fat-ass that can't keep a job for longer than two years, but I think I've had it this time. Plus, it doesn't help that my boss is an absolute plant when it comes to motivating people and creating a fun and pleasant working environment.

So my boss isn't exactly everybody's favorite person in the office. She can sometimes be a bit overbearing and condescending, but I know she has a good heart. I understand that she's making an effort to be more people-friendly, at least that's what I've been told, but it might just be a tad too late for me now. Don't get me wrong, she is a very competent and knowledgeable team lead with years of call center experience. When it comes to company policies and the intricacies of call center management, she definitely knows her stuff. It's her people skills that bother me. Or, her utter lack of it. I know she means well, and she's probably gravely misunderstood by a lot of people, including yours truly, but I can't shake the feeling that the two of us just can't seem to get along professionally. But I'll take a big chunk of the blame on this one. I haven't exactly been around often enough for us to really develop a harmonious working relationship, with the sick leaves and hypertension and all.

Now I won't be a hypocrite and say that I have zero fault in all this. This is as much my shit as anyone else's. Okay, so maybe it is more my fault than anything. I'll even go on record and say that I am probably the worst agent a team lead could ever have. But shouldn't that be all the more reason for a team lead to take it upon himself to try and help this pathetic excuse of a human being? Come on, don't we all love a challenge every now and then? But hey, I won't pretend to know how to do your job. I don't want both of us to fail in all this.

But it's really not about allocating blame. I just want to get all this behind me and just look towards the future. Problem is, there isn't really much of a future to look forward to. Tell me, what does a college undergrad, who has worked for more than ten years of his life without a single penny in savings to show for himself, and by all standards is getting a little too old and sickly for the fast-paced call center lifestyle, going to do when he finally puts down and retires his headset? Fallback? I guess I must have called in sick too on the day they taught us the meaning of the word. 

I could lose my job this Tuesday, so Wednesday ought to be a very interesting day for this tired old fool. 
So what the fuck now?

In Retrospect  

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I was gonna do it anyway so stop nagging! I'll write that obligatory 2011 recap post! Seriously everyone, don't yell at me all at once! Seriously. Anyone?

Maybe next year.
Nah, there was no clamor, no insistent public demand, not even a whisper asking me to write again. Not that I was looking for some reason or motivation to start writing again, but I just thought this blog could use some fresh reading. Yeah right, fresh.

So twenty-eleven wasn't exactly the spectacular year I was hoping it would be. If anything, last year to me was a year of comings and goings. In a sense, it was just like every other year for me. People came and went. I earned stuff, I lost stuff. I'm just grateful that I was blessed with another year, and I have to say I'm looking forward to another 365 days of adventure. 

So in line with that thought, I came up with my personal up's and down's in 2011:

UP's
  1. Became a team lead intern and had the chance to handle my own team
  2. Won an HTC Surround Windows phone
  3. Regained some degree of athleticism by joining a basketball team
  4. New career-high: made three 3-pointers in one quarter for a 100% 3PT FG clip in one game. 
  5. Met new people and built lasting friendships

DOWN's
  1. Zune closed
  2. XBox closed
  3. Lost above-mentioned phone
  4. Got separated from team mates
  5. Health issues resurfaced

All things considered, 2011 should have been a great year for me. I guess you really can't have it all. With that in mind, I'm looking towar 2012 with an open mind. I'm starting the year rough, what with this blood pressure at an all-time high, but I am hoping that the good balances out the bad, just like the bad evened out the good in 2011. 

Yeah I didn't get that last sentence either. Nobody does.

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Stories from the Simian Crease by Binchee is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Philippines License.
Based on a work at binchee.blogspot.com