The World According To Kenn Tenorio and 77 Pieces of Advice On Life, Love and Everything in Between, Coming From the Old People

My Symphonies:

  • Drag / Day Wave
  • Nothing At All /Day Wave
  • Lanterns / Birds of Tokyo
  • Taking Over / Joe Goddard

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We are here, you and me, right now, in this wonderful and chaotic place called Earth. And there are so many of us. Sooo many. So far, the general approximation is 7.2 billion and counting. Can you imagine that? There are more than 7 billion people breathing in this oblate spheroid at the moment. And each day, an average of 353,000 babies are born into this world to join our humanity. On the other hand, roughly 160,000 people die everyday. Every.Day. Isn’t that crazy? The statistics alone are enough to disturb us, scare us and maybe move us in some way, whether positively or negatively.

But lucky for us, we aren’t just here to make up those statistics. We are alive, and each of us has his own story to tell. We aren’t just here so that one day we can either give birth or pass away in order for the statistics to remain interesting. We are here for a reason, regardless of what that reason really is, or if you even believe there is one.

So 7.2 billion. To me, that’s a lot. I mean, I go to SM City Bacolod (which is a relatively tiny mall in my tiny hometown) and I go ballistic over the number of people that make up the crowd there, especially on Sundays. I literally sometimes get excessively infuriated by crowds. There are just times when you’re like “What in the eff is happening right now? Like WHY ARE THERE SOOO MANY PEOPLE?!?!!” And usually I just rush to run whatever errands I need to run in that mall and then I go for the nearest exit. And it really fascinates me how I can be so overwhelmed and stressed out sometimes by the number of people strolling in a nearby local mall, but when I take a look at the bigger picture, it’s nothing compared to the total of people that comprise the human race at the moment… 7.2 billion people.

… 7.2 billion people, yet we are so far away. So far away from each other, so far away from other people’s lives, other people’s cultures, other people’s griefs and joys. But when you think about it, we are one. We are one yet we are separated, scattered. We have gotten so used to life being a cycle that can be lived by following some rules and standards. We have become so accustomed to this process of waking up and surviving each day, trying to make ends meet, or trying to become better than we were yesterday, or competing with others, or gearing towards being successful. Life has become more of a marathon – a race – where money and success is what globally matters. We pass by people on the streets never really acknowledging that they, too, are humans just like us. That they, too, have lives and stories and friends and lovers and bittersweet pasts. For me, it is safe to say that we are the most selfish generation to date. And there are so many things that serve as distractions and deception these days. Technology hasn’t been a big help, either. I mean, don’t get me wrong – technology is great. It really is. I think it’s fetch. Super fetch. But technology has gotten to a point where it is so much of a convenience that it is becoming an inconvenience. I think you know what I mean. If not, here’s a basic example: Ever felt the need to sleep but you just find yourself at 4AM still scrolling away at your Facebook or Instagram feed? Exactly.

We are so caught up in our own little world that we forget to live. We are all just so busy. Gosh, do you even see how busy people are these days? And the most depressing part about being busy for me is that it is actually being globally viewed as a form of an asset, or an appealing attribute. Busy people wear their busy-ness like a golden medal even on their off-day. As if being busy makes you better than someone who lives a less hectic lifestyle. You greet someone and ask how they’ve been, and then he or she instantly feels the need to say things like “I’ve been so busy lately, it’s driving me crazy. But, you know, I’ve been well”. I know I already talked deeply about this back in 2012 in my article called We Are Very Busy People, but I just have to say something just to reiterate the general idea: being so busy is absolutely unnecessary. People think it’s necessary, but it isn’t. It isn’t even attractive, for me at least.

I am just feeling so strongly about this because I know that when it comes to the way the world works and the way that society operates, the numbers are not in my favor. I sit on the minority side of this topic. Even my closest friends and family know this. But they are exactly the reason why I always feel so compelled to share my insights to the world and to a lot of people. The more I grow up, the more I realize that I will never be understood and accepted the way that I truly need to be understood and accepted. And the more I realize that I will never be understood and accepted enough, the more I am empowered to keep on living this life the way that I know I want to.

People have called me a lot of things: a spoiled brat, a directionless immature slut, a lost puppy, a loose air, an un-contained chaos and a disaster waiting to happen. And I’m not angry at anyone for calling me any of those names. Had I been in their shoes and had I grown up with their thinking, I would call me those things too. But see, I’m not them. I am me. And in this world full of outside factors just wanting you to do what everyone else is doing, I know how important it is for me to keep it real. To wake up each day reminding myself of who I am, so I can consciously stay that way.

So life is pretty much a battle for me these days, simply because it is a constant struggle between following my heart and following what is “normal”, “right” and “rational”. To be completely honest, I am very solid in my ultimate life goal of becoming a ‘beach bum’ one day. It really is my only goal in life. I can write a whole book about this, but the basic, most straightforward explanation behind this is this: I love the beach, and I love sunsets, and I love tropical drinks and people whose best talents include meaningful conversations and appreciating the little things in life. I just love it. So why would I wanna live a life that I do not love?

But it’s not that simple. Contrary to popular belief, living the simple life is actually the toughest goal to achieve, especially if you come from a middle or upper-class family. Upper-class children are born into wealth and are therefore used to luxury and excess and most of them don’t even have an idea of what “simple” really means. Middle-class children, on the other hand, are mostly the most driven children on this planet. They aren’t poor, but they don’t have a lot of riches, either. So the general notion is that they wonder what it’s like to be on the greener side of the fence, to be rich, to have it all – they wonder what it’s like to have unlimited credit cards and unlimited yacht parties somewhere in France or Italy every summer. But that’s the thing: Middle-class people always wonder what it’s like to be “up there”, but they never wonder what it’s like to be “down there”. To live simply. To wake up not to jobs and a list of people to impress, but simply to wake up to the sunrise, the clouds, the birds and the trees. To breathe the fresh air in and look up to be reminded that you are whole no matter what.

That being said, becoming a beach bum requires a lot of work from me. But hey, I’m on it. Every single day that I affirm to myself that I am still the me that I know, gets me one step closer to my goal. I’ll be honest, I wanna leave everything behind sometimes. Just drop everything and continue on to the life that I want to live. For my own. For myself alone. If it were just completely up to me right now, I would literally pack my things right now and go on a really cheap tour to nowhere and let life happen to me. I think that’s where most people go wrong. They always feel like they should do things – a lot of things – so that their lives can matter. But what they don’t realize is that your life DOES matter. And it always will, whether or not you kill yourself over the obligations and goal-chasing that you think you need. You don’t need shit. You don’t always have to be the one that makes the waves. Sometimes you just gotta ride the waves and take time to enjoy the beauty that is our planet. Nature. Love. Poetry.

So why am I still here somehow trying to do some of the things that are expected of me? Simple. I love my friends and I love my family. When it comes down to it, their presence in my life matters to me. And even though they do not exactly share the same perspective on life, I love them to bits and pieces, and I just don’t want them to think that they failed as a parent, or a brother, or a friend to me just because I have life goals that to them seem silly. I need to take this process slowly because not everyone has the instant capability to connect with me about this on a soul-level. The general assumption would be that I am a hipster, which is what I am most irked by. Just because I love the beach and hate society doesn’t mean I’m a hipster. Ok, people? But if you really are THAT obsessed with labels, knock yourselves out. Call me whatever.

So in the mean time, while I’m waiting for that perfect time and that adequate amount of strength to reach my ultimate life goal, I’ve decided to do a research on old people. There’s really something about old people that has always intrigued me. If there’s a specific group of people that I openly label under some category, it would be the elderly. And nope, it’s so not under a derogatory light in any way, whatsoever. Here’s the deal. I love old people. If you come to think of it, they are the only ones around here that have lived long enough to know shit that we don’t. That’s just the most basic logic. With age comes wisdom. Generally speaking. And in one way or another, I do believe that old people are the most trustworthy of all of the age groups. Both them and little children.

So I’ve been reading a lot of articles and watching a lot of interviews about the elderly, specifically about their thoughts on life, love and the way that our world works. I happened to come across really interesting findings, so I decided to compile herein quotes I’ve gotten from my research. Fellas, I now present to you… The Top 77 Pieces of Life Advice From The Elderly:

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77  Pieces of Advice On Life, Love and Everything in Between

(from the elderly’s point of view)

1.“Invest in moments and experiences, not in things or properties. It’s not like you can be in your death bed someday and go “why is my condo unit in The Century not here with me right now?! I need it. I’m dying”. Invest in moments and experiences. Because moments and experiences become memories. And memories will never leave you, even when you’re old or dying. It’s the one thing that will be with you until your last second of consciousness, I believe.”

2.“Don’t look at the calendar. Just keep celebrating every day.”

3.“I make myself go out every day, even if it’s only to walk around the block. The key to staying young is to keep moving. Besides, later on in life, you will only wish you went out and moved more often”.

4. “Exercise, to me, is totally unnecessary. I think it’s mostly overrated. Stay active, and try to do it through experiences that you will remember someday, not some workout routine that you’ve memorized like the back of your hands.”

5. Have as many sex as possible. When you grow old, it is your sex drive and sexual capability that leave you, so take advantage of it while it’s still yours to have.”

6. “Fall in love, get married. Sex is to be encouraged.”

7.“Even if you feel hatred, keep it to yourself. Don’t hurt other people for any reason.”

8.“Don’t ever give up on love.”

9. “Nobody else controls you.”

10.”Travel while you’re young and able. Don’t worry about the money, just make it work. Experience is far more valuable than money will ever be.”

11.“If you are embarrassed to be dating someone, you should not be dating them.”

12.“Do one thing each day that is just for you.”

13.“Forgive.”

14.“Find your passion and live it.”

15.“Most time things will figure themselves out.”

16.“Have a pet. Life gets lonely sometimes. Pets are reminders of how we’re all living things.”

17.“Take time to mourn what you’ve lost.”

18.“Keep going and never give up.”

19.“Life is fun. It’s all up to the person. Be satisfied. You don’t have to be ‘happy’ all the time, you need to be satisfied.”

20.“Love people. Find something to like about the person—it’s there—because we’re all just people.”

21.“Get a great education. That is something that no one can take away from you.”

22.“If you’re positive you can get through it OK. When you think negatively, you’re putting poison on your body. Just smile. They say laughter is the best medicine there is.”

23.“For years I would not take any medicines at all. I don’t think they do much, and lots of times the doctor is using you as a guinea pig.”

24.“Just go ahead and do your thing no matter what.”

25.“Have lots of people in the house and lots of different kinds of people—young, old, black, white, people from all over the world. People have always energized me.”

26.“I attribute my longevity to a great extent to walking, not being in the back of the car strapped down.”

27.“We all remember how as children, when we were having fun, we often forgot to eat or sleep. I believe that we can keep that attitude as adults, too. It’s best not to tire the body with too many rules such as lunchtime and bedtime.”

28.“My inspiration is Robert Browning’s poem ‘Abt Vogler.’ My father used to read it to me. It encourages us to make big art, not small scribbles. It says to try to draw a circle so huge that there is no way we can finish it while we are alive. All we see is an arch; the rest is beyond our vision but it is there in the distance.”

29.“Pain is mysterious, and having fun is the best way to forget it.”

30.“Science alone can’t help or cure people.”

31.“This is some advice for the ladies. Don’t marry an older man, marry a younger one.”

32.“I try not to worry. I just try to live.”

33.“I don’t eat very much, but I always eat a fruit, a vegetable, and a little meat, and always make sure that I get sardine and salmon at least once or twice a week.”

34.“Try not to eat anything that’s healthy. It’s true. I eat whatever I want. The secret to longevity is ice cream.”

35.“Quit while you’re ahead.”

36.“[Humor is] a life force, a way of surviving the difficulties of living.”

37.“When you laugh at yourself, you prevent others from laughing at you.”

38.“I think [people] have to be curious. They have to be interested in life outside their little aches and pains. They have to be excited about seeing new things, meeting new people, watching a new play—just passionate about life.”

39.“I don’t care what you’re passionate about: maybe saving Dixie cup covers. But if you do it passionately, you’re alive.”

40.“Age is not a disease.”

41.“Keep an open mind, and things seem less strange.”

42.“Always listen to the other person. You’ll learn something. Try to sit back, because you will learn a lot more listening to others than telling them what you know.”

43.“You have to love what you do. if you find a job you love, you will never have to work a day in your life.”

44.“Take naps every day.”

45.“You get one family, so stick with them. But it depends if these hardships are financial or emotional or other types. Stick it out. Some days are worse than others, and you have to be ok with that. The night is darkest before dawn.”

46.“I try to take the time to look at and appreciate the smaller things that make this life beautiful. When I do that, time slows.”

47.“Do something interesting every day; otherwise you disintegrate.”

48.“Learning new things makes you happy and keeps your mind active.”

49.“Sleep well, try not to worry, and enjoy good dreams.”

50.“Be lovable. I’ve lived a long life because there are so many people who love me.”

51.“I take a drink of Scotch every day. And I feel great afterward.”

52. “I don’t like stress. I can’t stand arguing. If anybody is fussing, I’m gone. I like to be around positive people, people who lift you up not bring you down.”

53.“Mind your own business, and don’t eat junk food.”

54.“Laughter keeps you healthy. You can survive by seeing the humor in everything. Thumb your nose at sadness; turn the tables on tragedy. You can’t laugh and be angry, you can’t laugh and feel sad, you can’t laugh and feel envious.”

55.“Have a good wife, two scotches a night, and be easygoing.”

56.“It is very important to have a widespread curiosity about life.”

57.“Take one day at a time, and go along with the tide.”

58.“You have to be lucky, but I made the best of things when bad things happened. I also ate prunes every single day.”

59.“Do what you have to do. Don’t analyze it, just do it.”

60. “Take it easy, enjoy life, what will be will be. Sleep well, have a Bailey’s Irish Cream before bed if you have a cold—you will wake up fine the next morning.”

61. “I wish I hadn’t spent so much time worrying.”

62. “In relationships, sweat the small stuff. how you respond if your partner interrupts you while you’re doing something is very diagnostic of how good the relationship’s going to be. If you’re actively involved in reading the paper or doing something, and your partner wants to show you something of interest to him or her, whether you respond dismissively or you briefly stop what you’re doing and engage with your partner is very diagnostic of positivity in the relationship.”

63. “People who share core values typically have better marriages.”

64. “Communicate with your partner as often as possible.”

65. “Towards the end of life, what’s really important to people is to be able to see how their life mattered, how it was meaningful, how there was a story to it that wraps up in a good way.”

66.”Your life is not as serious as you think it is”

67.”When you meet someone for the first time, realise that you know nothing about them. You see race, gender, age, clothes. Forget it. You know nothing. Those biased assumptions that pop into your head because of the way your brain likes categories, are limiting your life, and others’ lives.”

68.”Remember that life is like a bank account: You don’t want to spend everything you have right away, but you don’t want to be a miser and save every penny. Yes, you’re only young once, but, with any luck, you’ll also be old at some point. Plan on a career, but don’t let it overcome the rest of your life. Take care of yourself, but don’t make it an obsession. Focus on your kids, but leave room in your life for yourself. Save enough money so that you’ll have enough for the future and for emergencies, but spend enough now to avoid looking back with regret.”

69.”Books. Read them. All the cliches apply (sunblock, flossing, travel). But don’t stop reading books, lots and lots and lots of books. Crappy ones, disturbing ones, difficult ones, fun ones. You can only live your one tiny life, but with books, you can live thousands more”

70.”Don’t marry young. Live your life. Go places. Do things. If you have the means or not. Pack a bag and go wherever you can afford to go. While you have no dependants, don’t buy stuff. Any stuff. See the world. Look through travel magazines and pick a spot. GO!” 

71.”Don’t chase with your hormones. Attractive people, because of their attractiveness, are seriously overrated. Choose the woman or man for your life by the quality of their character, the warmth of their heart, the kindness in their soul. Really, even if she or he is not the hottest, seek the company of others whose company you really enjoy. The person you marry may be the person who keeps you out of a nursing home. Bodies age and fade, but a deep and abiding love lasts a lifetime”

72.”People will always remember how you made them feel”

73.”Stuff is just stuff. Hoard time instead”

74.”Floss regularly, dental problems are awful”

75.”Collect experiences. I don’t have many regrets, but I do wish I would have travelled more when I was younger”

76.”A friend will come running if you call them at 2am; everyone else is an acquaintance”

77. “Work less. And try to live more.”

The Most Phenomenal Fact

My Symphonies: 

  • Chandelier / Sia
  • Collapse / Vancouver Sleep Clinic
  • Flaws / Vancouver Sleep Clinic
  • Poison&Wine / The Civil Wars
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Kenn Edward Tenorio. 22 and notoriously crazy.

You know what the most phenomenal fact is? The most phenomenal fact in my life and in the world that I live in? The most phenomenal fact about everything and everyone that I have ever crossed paths with?

The most phenomenal fact, ladies and gentlemen, is that I am right now sitting here and  writing to you with the knowledge that when it comes down to it, this life is my own and that there’s no one else to be thanked or blamed. It is the knowledge that time is ticking away like a madman with every breath that I take; the knowledge that I am tiny and enormous at the same time, because of how the universe and this planet came to be billions of years ago. It is the knowledge that a day will come when none of this will really matter. Do you know how depressing and brilliantly liberating that is? To know that you can write and express your raw thoughts and articulate your raw emotions to a blank space without having to worry about the great future significance of whatever the hell it is that you are writing? Let me tell you: it’s motherfucking great.

You know how in movies the main character starts narrating his story through a voice-over while the opening credits are being flashed on the screen? That’s kind of how I feel right now. I feel like my life is on its opening credits, and here I am talking to an inanimate object so that people will later on hear what I have to say. I think it’s one part of being a writer. A lot of great writers in the history of literature didn’t get to see their work earn millions of dollars and millions of readers because they passed away before that happened. It’s depressing and also wonderful, I think. And I’m not saying that I am the next Sylvia Plath or Ernest Hemingway, I’m just saying that I am a fucking boy living in this sort of fucked-up but somehow amazing planet, and I am feeling somewhere in between alive and dying at the moment.

I am not naive, and I am not dumb. Well, sometimes I act like I am. Well, most of the time, actually. It’s actually like a form of self-entertainment for me. But I’m not naive or dumb. I know that I am often lost, and people always feel the need to put some sense into my head. You know what, let me tell you something rather explosive:

I am notoriously crazy, in the fiercest sense of the word. I am a lot of things, and people know that. For starters, I hate society. I’ve always been a nonconformist, but it’s not because I wanna stand out. In fact, the major reason why I hate society is that I know that it doesn’t exist. Society is a state of mind. It’s not like someone just woke up one day and decided he was gonna invent society and then Hello, bitches! Here I am! Yours Truly, Society xoxoxo! No. Nobody just simply got bored one morning and thought of ways to create society. Society is really all in the mind, and I am aware that as long as I hate society, I am self-injecting its existence into my life. It’s almost like acknowledging the fact that it is still somehow stronger than I am.

So in a way, going against “society” is like battling my own demons inside of me. It’s like telling that part of your thoughts that you don’t enjoy to get the hell out and go fuck itself. And I’m telling you, it’s not easy.

It’s not easy to have to walk along the streets and exchange hi’s and hello’s with people who may or may not be aware of the same things that you are aware of. I mean, I am not judging anyone. We are all different because had we all been similar to each other, the world wouldn’t be as alive and interesting as it is right now. We all make up this kaleidoscopic world, where each of us plays his or her role in the affairs of the universe. So it’s not that I want people to think the way I do, it’s simply that I wanna be heard. Sometimes. Like today.

All I’m saying is, there are so many facets to me that not a lot of people understand.

I am the friend they love to hate. Because I am so unapologetically expressive, and I am loud, and I am outgoing, and I am unpredictable, and I am hyperactive and sometimes unreasonably enthusiastic. And I do things that they take as an insult simply because we do not all share the same values and priorities. Sometimes I do things that I believe are fun but are already grave and derogatory for some people.

I am the whiny misunderstood bitch who’s lazy and erratic like hell. Because that’s just how I am. I am honestly either the best or the worst companion. I don’t do anything half-ass, and I think that I have established that. I like extremes, and I really just live in the moment. I am ill. I can be vindictive and irrational. I can be very over-the-top with anything that I do. I piss people off, and it’s usually the people I am truly close with. Because when I am really close with someone, I tend to show them all parts of me. I don’t spare them the gory details. Why should I? Do you have any idea how rare it is to find real friends nowadays? Real lovers? even understanding family members? Let me tell you, it’s effing hard. So when you know for a fact that this or that person gets you, and you feel like you’ve both connected to that point where you can share anything with them, even your deepest darkest secrets? You let loose. You let go, and then you explode. You let them watch your lava pouring and skyrocketing all over the place. I don’t know about you, but I like to think of every day as the last day I get. That’s why I love the extremes. I always try my hardest to live on the edge because really, there’s no other place I’d rather live but on the highway and the fast lanes of my own little world. People always say things like, oh my gosh I can’t wait for my bucket list to get crossed out entirely. Or Someday, I’m gonna do it. I’m gonna fuck this shit and live the life that I want to live. Or Someday, my life will be great. Not today, nope. But someday, I am gonna be fucking rich/famous/significant. Someday I’m gonna change the world. Someday I am gonna meet the man of my dreams and I am gonna marry the fuck out of him. Because someday I am so gonna be in love that none of the gods can do anything about it. Someday I am gonna be happy. Someday I am gonna get a dog and walk him in the park where I can say that hey, I have a stable 9-5 job and I have a 6-digit income, so look at me being so fly at the park walking my super expensive dog along with the other stable people here. Like, one day, I am gonna be living my dream. I am gonna be an inspiration to others one day. Maybe next year, I’ll go on a trip to Rio where I can finally go crazy and be myself without being judged like I do in my tiny little hometown. Maybe next month, I can finally do this and that. And maybe, in the next decade or so, I can finally go on a hot-air balloon ride in light of my Bucket List Crossing Out Event.

Fuck.

It’s always Someday. That Someday, I tell you. Damn. It’s your worst enemy. Does anyone else out there wonder deeply about this sick obsession of people about the future?

Look at your friends. Look at your lovers. Your family. Your brothers, sisters, your batchmates in high school, in elementary, your workmates, your boss. Your community leaders. Et freaking cetera…. Everyone is so attached to this idea that someday, life will be good. The idea that someday, all of the hardwork and the sacrifices and the endless burning of the midnight oil will finally pay off. A bright motherfucking future. That’ what everyone cares about these days.

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In beauty pageants, one question that never goes out of style is this:

If there is one thing you could change about the world, what would it be and why?

I’m telling you, one day I’m gonna join the fucking Miss Universe just so I get the chance to be asked that question and I will say (and no I won’t be giving any amount of fucks about the time limit or how the crowd’s gonna react or if they shut the cameras down, coz I’m just gonna explode):

Thank you for that wonderful question, Ms. Someone Who Is Supposed to be Worldly Significant Enough For Me To Shake Out of Nervousness Because It’s Supposed to be a Big Deal. 🙂 (of course, I’ll be smiling the entire time because that’s how a Miss Universe contestant should act, right? They should always be skinny and smiling, as if representing the universe is all about that.) If there is one thing that I could change about the world, it would be the way humanity worships the future. Like honestly, that’s the only thing I would like to change about this world. I just wish we could all give less of a damn about what the eff will happen next month, next year, or 5 years later. Why is it always about the future? You always hear “Someday, I will be happy” but you never really hear someone saying “Right now, I am happy. This is great. This is amazing. I feel alive”. Tell me you hear or read that across social media sites on a daily basis and I’ll be the first bitch to axe-kick you across the face to wake you the fuck up. Because nobody says that. Nobody believes in the present anymore, when it’s technically the ONLY thing that we are certain about. Why can’t the HERE and NOW be amazing? Why does it always have to be a trip around the world  or a job promotion or money that will make you happy? And why does it always have to be SOMEDAY? I’m sick of that word, actually. Someday is the worst scammer you will ever encounter in your life. Sure, you can choose to believe so tightly in the future, but what if none of what is on your bucket list happens? What? You’re never gonna be happy then? That you’re gonna die sad and miserable because you didn’t get to do all those fancy things that you were once so sure were gonna happen? I mean seriously, ladies and gents. Look around you. You are all breathing and you all have a reason to believe that right now is the best time to live, because this is the current time that we are in. For a change, try focusing on the now. I don’t know about you, but now is lovely. Now is beautiful. Now is birds chirping, now is oceans running deep, now is breathing and caring and dancing and loving. Now is friendships that are flourishing, now is rivers rushing. Now is fireworks and parachutes and gummy bears and pugs. Someday isn’t the time. NOW is the time. Now is literally the only time that you are alive. Okay? And yes, three servings of STL for me at the backstage after this please, thankyouverymuch!

And you know what else? 

The most phenomenal fact is that I get to live these days with you even when I know that we aren’t meant to be together. Look at me. And then look at you. We are two different people with ideals sitting on the opposite ends of the spectrum.

I am happy, though. You know I always am when I am with you. It’s kind of hard to rationalize what we have because everyone knows that what we have is anything but rational. But you know what? I am fucking grateful. Being with you has taught me a great deal about myself and about love. Being with you has made me look at the tiniest of things and feel like I can still hold on to them. Being with you has proven that even air and water can make a wonderful harmony at one point… even just at one point. Remember that night I told you that this is the kind of love that can kill us? The kind of love that can bleed and maybe never heal? I meant that. I realize that in this crazy world, it is possible for two people to have a connection so strong and so real that no amount of hardcore differences and hardcore battles can make them let go so easily. When two people have a really strong bond, it takes more than just a heated argument or a Bible-thick list of differences to make them realize that they should let go. And that’s what it’s like with you…

We make hurricanes, thunders, lightnings and earthquakes, but I love that.

I love that for now, I get to kiss you good-night and see your lazy face in the mornings. I love that for now, when I look into your eyes, I still see the you I fell in love with. I love that for now, I get to hug you and smell your natural scent right down your neck. I love that I get to laugh with you, and smile with you over the stupidest things. I love that I still get to reach for your hand in the dark and feel them open up, like a flower in the dawn of Spring. And I love that for now, you are mine and I am yours, and in this little tiny world of Here and Now that I built inside my head, we are forever. I know that forever doesn’t exist in the long run, but it does exist in the present. That’s how I feel, and that’s how I have been feeling with you… Call me crazy, but I am glad I am. Because if I weren’t, I wouldn’t be here… I wouldn’t  be here breathing the same air as you. And I probably wouldn’t be the one you gave your heart to at this point in your life.

Your mouth is the mouth that says the harshest things to me, and the same mouth that kisses me.

Your eyes are the eyes that look down on me, and the same eyes that say how much I’m loved.

Your hands are the hands that brutally give me bruises, and the same hands that delicately hold mine.

Your arms are the arms that push me away, and the same arms that keep me close to your chest at night.

Your mind is the mind that doubts me, that hates me, that kills me. And the same mind that believes in me, that loves me, that thinks I’m alive.

And if that Someday will come when you think you’ve had enough of this plethora of mess that is myself, and you decide to let go, know that I truly do love you. You know how I know that? Because I’ve always known this was irrational, but it never mattered. I genuinely didn’t give a single heck about how messy, and how irrational, and how crazy this was because for once, I wanted to experience how it really is to FALL. How it really is to love someone not for the good times, but for the whole package – the good, the bad, the ugly and the brutally grotesque.

I know we do not have a tomorrow, but today is still here. And I am here while it lasts, my love.

The most phenomenal fact is that I don’t love you, but I always will………………… 

To The Starving Artist

I am really proud of all of the artists out there who keep on doing what they’re doing despite the financial instability that usually comes with the Artist Life. For those artists who have been lucky enough to make it big “up there”, I am happy for all of you, and I think that [some of you] really deserve the financial success you have in your lives today. However (and this is me speaking from the very depths of my heart), I am way prouder and happier for those artists who are not “up there” but are still practicing their art – not for the sake of money or social status, but for the sake of art itself.

That’s what I love about art, actually. When it comes down to it, there is no “up there” in the artist world. Because when you really consider the essential things (the truly essential things) like honesty, pain, love, chaos and beauty, you will realize that when it comes to art, “up there” doesn’t exist – only “in here” does. Because that’s what an artist does – to speak from what’s within him, to write, or sing, or play, or draw, or act, or paint, or dance whatever truth it is that he has in his heart; to communicate to the world the naked reality that society constantly and blindly rejects; to find in his soul and in his heart the fiasco that makes this world go ’round and the beauty that occasionally makes it still and smile.

So it doesn’t matter where you are in life right now. The point is you are alive. I don’t care if you are a bassist playing in a next-to-nonexistent local band in a rural area in a third world country; I don’t care if you are a frustrated writer who has tried a million times but never gets published; I don’t care if you are an ambitious actor who waits tables and mops floors just so you can afford that theatre workshop; I don’t care if you are a painter whose works have only been seen by his immediate family and friends; And I definitely do not care that you are not “up there”. Because let me tell you something: you don’t have to be rich and famous for your art to matter. 

Keep doing what you’re doing. Keep dancing, keep playing, keep singing, keep painting, whatever. Just do not stop. Because as an artist, you can never find your success in any pay cheque, bank statement, Twitter and Facebook followers or your boss’ mouth; you can only find it in your heart. That, my fellow artist, is your success. That, my friend, is your ticket to a life not only survived, but lived.

If I Were A Sentence Written In The English Language

My Symphony: Luxury Of Loneliness by Her Space Holiday

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If I were a sentence written in the English language, I would be compound-complex with lots of nouns and even more verbs. I would have five dependent clauses speaking slightly about my schooling, my job, my salary, my possessions and my wants. Only two of my clauses would speak of love, romance, beauty, poetry, chaos and adventure. But these are the independent clauses, and they’d speak with clarity, certainty and passion.

My structure wouldn’t always be considered conventional as my commas sometimes induce confusion. Even my appositives could be quite misleading. I would often end up being laughed at by people who judge me as ungrammatical without even giving me a second read. They would grab the upper right corner of the page I’m written on and turn it over, unsympathetically missing the meaning behind my gerund phrases masquerading as little juvenile outputs of  irrationality behind my overtly reticent figures of speech.

I would have infinitives that I truly hold close to my heart and a couple of onomatopoeic mixtures of syllables that give music to my life. I would often be misunderstood, but I’d never be boring.

Intellectuals and achievers would dislike me, though, because they’d be disappointed to learn that I am full of simple words – words they’d never have to refer to a dictionary to check the meaning of. They’d even go as far as telling me I am a waste of ink and, more especially, a waste of space. They’d critically ridicule me for not being popular, successful or bankable. They would cringe at the mere thought of my existence not contributing anything to the modern day society. I am never quoted in any book, magazine or newspaper. My strokes and my edges have never been seen in university halls and on office walls; no one finds me significant enough to be framed or published. Basically, most people think I am simply silly. Childish, lazy, rebellious.

But that’s just the majority.

On the brighter side, I would occasionally have readers who are more emotionally inclined. Now I don’t mean emotional alcoholics who regularly walk around with their broken hearts’ blood on their sleeves, or people who cry over everything about their lives 24/7. What I’m referring to are the people who treat it as a priority to read between the lines; people who know how to look at one’s conjunctions and transitional adverbs not as a convolution but as an opportunity – an opportunity to ask more, to know more, to understand more. And these are the people that I would be holding on to. There wouldn’t be many of them, but they’d be more than enough to bring my syntax to life.

So every now and then, I would be lucky enough to be situated right in front of kind and compassionate eyes. These eyes wouldn’t necessarily have to be that educated in Semantics, Psychology or Literature. These are simply eyes that have seen sentences like me in a less blinding light. These are eyes that know I’m not childish, but childlike; not lazy, but idyllic; not rebellious, but alive (and kicking).  These are eyes that have the ability to read a compound-complex thing like me and see the simplicity in an instant.

And if I were a sentence written in the English language, I’d be translated to all the other languages there are in the world. Nope, not because I am so great and influential, but simply because just like all the other sentences out there, my only goal in life is to be written and read

…and maybe even loved.

To My Next One

My Symphony: Amsterdam by Coldplay 

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(photo source)

There you are. Wiping the sweat off your forehead after another long and torturous day of wondering where I am.

There you are, just sitting there with your signature poker face. You are holding that Humans of New York book that you’ve read from cover to cover for about seven times now. In front of you is a wine glass full of orange juice. You’re not gonna be getting drunk tonight. You’re not gonna be in the club dancing with sixty other strangers and contemplating each soul that’s potentially breathing inside every person in that room whom you find cute. Because tonight, you’re staying in and cooking your own dinner. Tonight, only for tonight, there is no time for any interaction aside from that which you are having with yourself. You’ve decided to just sit there, in front of your overcooked salmon and lukewarm orange juice, and think.

So there you are. Thinking. Not the kind of thinking that you normally do when you answer your major exams, or the thinking that’s required in planning those summer vacations you go to with your friends in spring; it is rather the thinking that you do when you think about love.

There you are. Beautiful as the sunrise. I don’t even understand how someone can be as stunning as you are. I mean I didn’t even know it was possible, but there you are – a breathing, shining proof that somewhere out there lives a higher power. Something that is way larger than any of us earthlings can imagine; something that’s ethereal, superhuman.

There you are. You have said you’ve been single your whole life because none of your past relationships seemed right. There are days when you wonder what love feels like, looks like, smells like. Does it feel the same way the palm trees feel the ocean-catapulted breeze? Does it look like the view of the city from the rooftop of your apartment building? Does it smell anything like green tea and vanilla extract? You do not know. But you wish you did.

There you are. You have gone to at least eight different countries by the age of twenty-four. What are you looking for out there? Nothing, maybe. Maybe you’re just sort of walking around this entire time, subconsciously hoping to finally bump into me. You have spent a significant amount of time with your friends. And they’ve been really good friends to you. They’ve laughed at your jokes, smiled at your happiness and waved at your moments of randomness. They’ve been with you on all those long walks, all those food trips, concerts, live theater performances and sometimes even on Valentine’s Day. And tonight is no different. They’re still the ones that fill your phone inbox. They’re still the ones that flood your Facebook timeline. They’re still the ones that witness your life as it unfolds dramatically. The only difference is that tonight, the unsatisfied longing for the presence of that one person – that one person whom you will love with all your heart – has definitely hit the deadline. You want love, just as much as I do. But the universe has had a funny way of creating two like-minded individuals who are a perfect match, and then putting them so far away from each other.

There you are. Where have you been? It’s actually quite funny. I’m impatiently asking you this when you have every right to ask me the same question. So where have been?

I’ve been here. Not sitting like you are right now, but floating. I’ve been dreaming a lot and sleeping a lot. I’ve been here and there, and I’ve looked for you too many times in too many places. I’ve been in this dozy tourist village that is my bedroom just writing about you, reading about you and thinking about you.

And now here I am. Jaded after all the rollercoaster rides in my life so far. I am bruised and scarred but smiling. Just like you, I had spent the whole day somehow hoping that our paths would finally cross.

Here I am, visualizing the numerous awesome moments we will be making.

Inside my head, here we are. I’ve never felt this special with anyone in my life. I adore the dimples that form on your cheeks each time I smile at you. I adore that. I adore the fact that I can be certain you will always smile back. Because when you smile, your eyes somehow disappear but your joy doesn’t. And I adore that. I adore that we can be foolish and intelligent with each other without having to apologize for anything. I adore that we are so the same yet so different. I adore that you like dogs, Katy Perry and dim lighting. I adore that everytime the wind brushes through your hair, it dances just enough to create the illusion of us hovering above the ground. And everytime I hold your hand, I adore that it fits perfectly. When you’re far away and I see you, it doesn’t take you long to see me; we don’t yell or wave, and sometimes we don’t even smile – we just look at each other as we approach the center point. There’s all this percolating love and passion underneath the calmness. I adore that. I adore that because all those years of trials and errors have led the two of us to this point. And there’s so much inside of us that we can just explode at any given second. But I adore that. I adore the idea that we are now standing face to face like two active volcanoes ready to erupt. And I adore that the eruption would be an eruption of love.

But here I am. And there you are. No amount of thinking and visualizing can realistically put us right next to each other any time soon.

I like to believe that you are out there, Next One. And if you are, I hope that at the very right moment, you will finish that orange juice of yours and take a walk along the beach.

I will be there. And I swear, you will be the Last One.

Strange

An excerpt from Kenn Tenorio’s mental diary, written on the same day he decided that orange jellybeans aren’t too bad after all:

These lives we live. This world we live in. Sometimes it’s amazing. Sometimes it’s scary. Other times it’s depressing. Other times it’s quite enjoyable. There are days when it’s hollow, days when it’s cold. And there are nights when it’s warm, nights when it’s gray. In some seasons, it is full of joy and happiness. In other seasons, it is filled with misery and sorrow. There are moments when it’s making sense, moments when it doesn’t, and moments when it just simply is what it is: blank, void, flat, mute, empty and seemingly flavorless. It is a hundred different things that bring a million different emotions. But one thing remains constant: it is always, always STRANGE.