A Segway of Sorts

Waaaah I’m horrible for being gone for 2 months and absolutely ignoring this blog. It wasn’t so much as ignoring but finding it difficult to find the time to actually write. I’m not into personal posts such as these since I’m good at talking but not about myself but I suppose it would be good as this would be like flexing my muscles (or more specifically, my fingers) for my unplanned hiatus officially ends today! Which means I get to go back to reviews and critiques and essays! Yey!

But moving on. Last semester was challenging. And it was challenging in the sense that my patience, self worth, and motivation were all tested on a day-to-day basis, or at least, moreso than usual. I wonder if I ought to be proud of myself for the things that I accomplished last semester but when I look back on it, I feel only distaste and disappointment for both myself and the education system I’m under. 

I was enrolled in 17 units last semester and although a majority of my classes had been core courses and majors of my beloved course, it was all lacking and dull for me. My classes held much promise in their course title and description but are frustratingly underwhelming when taught in the way that they were when I took the class. 

I remember the semesters when I was drowning in school work and flunking grades but felt so happy to be enrolled in that class underneath inspiring professors who taught me so much more than what was expected of them. And I miss that feeling, of being challenged yet enjoying it because it’s done so wonderfully by such wonderful educators. Last semester was very, very trying. My professors were, without a doubt, respectable people. However, I can’t help but wonder if perhaps their time as great educators had passed and I had just not been able to bear witness to it. 

Of course I, as a student, also poses a problem. I’m not a perfect student, in fact I am far from it, with moody anxiety and motivation spikes that far often make me into a really difficult student to teach. I acknowledge this and do try to work on it as much as I can. But it is difficult when your self worth goes down the drain while your anxiety hits the roof. Man, your motivation to keep going really struggles to keep itself afloat. 

I had a professor that I admired and respected but it was difficult for me to meet her standards. I struggled to climb the seemingly impenetrable fortress that is her expectations, and because I constantly failed to do so I felt as if I knew nothing and that I was nothing. It’s not my first time crying over my insecurities concerning my academic performance but it’s the first time I’ve ever felt like nothing, sometimes even less than nothing. Week after week of not feeling motivated but afraid to speak and write every time I was humiliated in class. Though I know them to be abstract and incapable of feeling, it was as if my words were paralyzed. I was muted and my fingers too heavy to type out even my name. 

Everything about me was contested, my intelligence, common sense, ability to write, think, feel. And to have that be done in a class I didn’t feel safe to speak out in, it was terrifying. I wish I could say I feel proud of myself for having survived that but to be quite honest, I don’t feel like I survived anything; I don’t feel as if I’ve gotten past anything. These doubts still resonate with me and my fingers are still heavier than they used to be. I miss the mojo or groove or whatever you call it that drove me. But hopefully, this, flexing my fingers, is the first step to standing up again. 

Well, there. What a totally useless post! But I did have to get this off my chest in order to move forward. Well, onward and forward we go. 

Alimuom, A Filipino Poem, by Manuel Balmeo

Walang bahid ng pagtangis ang mga ulap.
Ang langit kung saan sila’y nakalapat,
‘sing kulay na ulit ng kupas mong maong
Ang kaninang malamig na hangi’y
bumalik nang muli sa dati nitong init
Sa unang tingin, tila hindi bumuhos ang ulan.
Ngunit kung ipipikit nang saglit ang mga mata,
mararamdaman mo ang bigat ng hangin,
maamoy mo ang alimuom.

Source: An excerpt from Alimuom by Manuel Balmeo

Hi, guys! Check out a wonderful piece of Filipino poetry that my boyfriend wrote on his wordpress account.

Life Update: At an Impasse

I am busy yet again with school work and I have little to no energy or confidence to push through with my tasks. It’s been yet another trying semester, and I’ve gone through so many things that have shaken my esteem and my dignity, most of which are direct consequences of adults and professors who claim to be more mature than my generation but can still find the time to bully and take advantage of students and their authority just so they can feel better about themselves.

I’m honestly so tired of people and my academics are slowly starting to disintegrate into a reluctant obligation for me as I no longer find myself motivated to learn or even attend my classes. I don’t know if this is because of my professors or me, if it’s me being bad again. Perhaps both parties are at fault. 

As I write this, I have a one-act play and its staged reading to finish and prepare for, a long exam for my Mathematics subject that is two chapters too long, and a 10-minute speech to write by Friday which calls for an interview first that is yet to be scheduled. 

I’m finding it hard to keep myself afloat, I feel as if I don’t have the skill nor heart to finish any of them. I feel as if I will inevitably fail and so there is no point in trying. But of course I haven’t got a choice. I must pick myself up from the ground and throw myself into the fire. I will still inevitably trudge through everything until I am able to finish it, because that it what I have always done, even in the face of fear. 

But I find myself at an impasse, for I am paralyzed by fear and shackled by doubts and insecurities. 

I hate them, the people who have forced me back into my shell just to broaden their comfort zone even if it meant taking mine. My territory, my dignity: all trampled upon. I barely have any space left to get myself back on my feet. Why did your pride and ego have to cost me my peace? I wish it was in humanity’s nature to be respectful as it is to be vicious.

This is the weakest I have felt in months, or perhaps I have felt this way ever since the semester started. Because the start of this semester has tired me out than the rest have, which is saying a lot since I’m always on the precipice of uncertainty, where I am unable to take control of anything in my life, including my education. 

There isn’t much of a point to this post, only that I really needed to get these things off my chest, in the hopes of allrviating the heaviness I feel inside my ribcage. Maybe that’s what science and technology needs to work on instead of guns and bombs. A cure to insecurities and doubts. A magic slate wherein if you wrote it all down, it would disappear as you erased it from the board. That’s what a good portion of humanity needs.

I am so, so, so tired. And if only I could get myself out of this slump. For now, I only wish to rest easy and breathe freely. Every morning when I wake up, I only wish to survive until the next day. May the gods grant me some piece of mind. I’m a thread away from losing it. 

Why ’13 Reasons Why’ Isn’t Worth It

To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t expecting much from the show since when I had read the book back in elementary, it did not strike me as deep as it could have. But I didn’t know whether to attribute my complete lack of empathy to the fact that I wasn’t socially woke yet or because it was just not a good book. So when Netflix and Selena Gomez teamed up to make a tv series adaptation, my curiosity was piqued but not enough to actually look forward to it.

But when people started talking about the graphic content the show had and all of the mixed reviews, I knew I had to watch it. So when I finally got the chance and time (university, release me from your clutches), I streamed it all in one night until the early hours of the next day. And I was sorely disappointed at how I spent so much time watching a TV show that I couldn’t even deem worth it.

The truth about depicting sensitive issues like mental health is that your imitation will always be under fire because there is no perfect imitation, only a close one. But 13 Reasons Why had not only been the farthest I had ever seen in depicting mental health problems, it had done nothing to give justice to people who suffered from depression and abuse like Hannah Baker, despite the show being entirely about her.

Before anything else, I want to mention that I do understand that the intentions of the creators of the show are ultimately good. In fact, I found myself enthralled by some of the scenes, and at first I even came to love the show. The cast were wonderful and the OST was great (except for that song Selena Gomez wrote because of how they made it out to be referring to the “could-have-been romance” of Clay and Hannah). The rare (yes, rare) scenes where the show actually calls out society on their hypocrisy were on point. But as things progressed, I had come to the conclusion that the show, in its entirety, was woefully inaccurate and ultimately not worth it and below are some of the points that I can’t help but call them out on that support my opinion.

TRIGGER WARNING: This show talks about suicide, sexual abuse, and rape so they will be brought up in this review. So if you are uncomfortable with any of those topics, please do not read any further. For a list of trigger warnings for the entire series (because Netflix only gave warnings for the last two episodes like what the fuck, Netflix), click here

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A Fortified Waistline

Note: This is an original piece I wrote last year, only ever published in my private tumblr whose link I have never shared with anybody else except perhaps one person. This was written at a time I had gained noticeable weight and was really very tired of hearing how this affected everybody else’s lives more than it did mine. To all the body-shamers out there, this one’s for you!

 

i live in a society whose culture dictates that this waistline

is owned and regulated by everyone else

on every pair of jeans i own is a tag that reads “26”

a tag that dictates whether i deserve a slap or a kiss

 

i don’t really know who it was

that decided that “you got fatter”

and “you put on weight”

were appropriate and accepted conversation starters

 

i mean, whoever it was

must have had nothing better to do with their time

and felt that the digits of your waistline

were direct translations of your worth in numbers

 

as if your waistline was proportional

to your own perception of self worth

equating to your meager existence being given the backseat

meaning that your weight was a license for others to treat you like shit

 

why was the weighing scale used to measure

the amount of respect a person was due

if i took this measuring tape and wrapped it around your ego,

the least i would get would be a three digit combo

 

for some reason i could never really comprehend

how it was possible for their massive fat hungry egos

to deserve a placemat on the table

gorging on a plate full of carb-filled lies and meaty fables

 

while you starve yourself by the bathroom floor

puking out your confidence on all fours

and as you flush it down with just a tinge of hope

hope that’ll carry you as far as the next joke

 

and really i’m so fucking over it

when people tell me off, “no, that has carbs in it”

and “that’ll go straight to your thighs”

as if it’s such a big crime to indulge in some fries

 

i mean for fuck’s sake,

why should we have to starve ourselves

for the sheer purpose of their comfort

and their comfort alone

 

what about the comfort i need

when it’s night and i can’t breathe

for the fear that my stomach will get bigger

and in those last conscious minutes, my resolve would almost waver

 

you can sleep through the stomach’s call

and pretend it’s but an irrelevant message

because really what kind of gall does it have to disturb your sleep

each time it contracts in pain and in pinpricks

 

why should you have to suck in a breath

each time one of them pokes on the rolls of your stomach

and calls you names that reach inside with a crack

your body isn’t theirs to compress

 

your body is a temple

a temple built from the strongest of marble

but not a temple to be desecrated by their gods

not a temple to be burnt by their mortals

 

listen, friend, the secret is this

skin will tear and crack and wither

with a few broken scars to consider

and flesh will decay and rot and whisper

 

“you are a roll too many,

and a pound too heavy”

but your bones are strong enough to carry that weight

your bones are there to carry on in that state

 

your bones will break and crumble to dust

but they’ll never give up on the scale of your bust

it’ll stick to your flesh and your flesh to your skin

this is your foundation that’ll carry on your kin

 

your bones will buck and tremble

but this is the strongest part of you that is able

able to move and duck and cradle

the flesh you carry that you are so ashamed of

 

see, the strongest parts of you are covered

by those prone to society’s prodding and curse

measured not by a measuring tape or weighing scale

but by how much it can carry and carry on

 

you are made up of so much more than just flesh

and after all this is over your bones will remain

with no sign of fats or waistlines or weight gain

so who gives a fuck about the weighing scale

 

i don’t really know who it was

that decided that “you got fatter”

and “you put on weight”

were appropriate and accepted conversation starters

 

i mean, whoever it was

must have felt that their opinion was worth our time

but what i really mean is fuck you

really, fuck you and fuck off

As Personal as Speeches Go

Below is a transcript of a personal speech I wrote for one of my classes this semester in speech communication. I wanted it to be one of the first things I shared in this page because it says a lot about me, as a person, a BA student, and an advocate of the arts

Note: Words and phrases indicating where I am and study specifically have been edited out. What I can tell you about my degree program, however, is that it centers heavily on the arts, humanities, and literature.

I know I won’t be the first one to tell this tale and I know I won’t be the last one either. First of all, I’m not a stranger to discrimination. As a woman. a member of the LGBT community, and a Bachelor of Arts student, discrimination is a lot like the fourth sugar cube in my morning coffee: unnecessary, but somehow always still there. So insensitive, prejudiced, and ignorant statements usually just roll off my back pretty easily. But a few days ago, I had been shaken to my core by an overheard conversation of three students, all younger than me.

It was as if my morning coffee had spilled all over me and the fourth sugar cube hit me in the face as I sat there in front of them in our Math class, and this was how their conversation transpired. As we were waiting for the class to settle down, my classmates were chattering amongst themselves and their turn of conversation suddenly piqued my attention.

Student number 1 had asked his two friends: “What’s the easiest course in [our university]?”

And student number 2, the only girl, replied by saying: “[my degree program]!” with such unapologetic vigor, in a voice that seemed to have tried very hard to keep the, “Duh!” out of that sentence.

And they continued to go on and on about how easy it was until I couldn’t help but turn around, and say with the calmest, kindest voice I could muster: “It’s not easy. I’m a [my degree program] student.”

And the girl, with the dripping Duh in her voice, does it again as she says: “I know.”

I couldn’t understand their prejudice, how they could talk about something so easily with such little basis, or their nerve to talk about it so loudly when I was seated right in front of them. Did their course earn a start every time they ranked it above another? Did they feel smarter and better about themselves knowing that they didn’t get the “easiest” course available? Was the belief that BA [my degree program] was the “easiest” course the comfort they needed in order to get through another take on Math? If they could only see past their self-serving bias and stop to think, then maybe they would actually be able to form a logical argument.

It irked me so much that I didn’t know what to do.  Should I tell them of all the sleepless nights I’ve endured trying to understand each line Aristotle wrote? Should I tell them of how heavy your shoes could feel every time you had to walk up in front of class to deliver a speech and hope that you’ll say something that won’t make you hate yourself for the rest of the day? Should I tell them of all the essays and all the papers and all the critiques that have rendered me mirthless and drained at the end of every semester?

Maybe I should have. But I didn’t. Partly because I didn’t want to start a scene in class and partly because I knew it would be futile, given the context. Even if I told them, how could they possibly understand? They, who had no appreciation for the arts or for Machiavelli or Shakespeare, how could I expect them to even begin to understand?

How could they understand the wonder in being able to grasp what art means to one of the most important personalities in history? How could they understand the exhilaration of being able to make your audience laugh or cry? How could they understand the feeling even I have no words for when you’re actually able to write a paper that you can 100% be proud of?

So I ignored them, pushed them to the back of my mind, throwing their words like gasoline into a fire for when I need something to keep me going on those cold sleepless nights spent on papers and readings. I am by no means conceding, nor am I accepting that the humanities and the arts are as meager as they believe them to be. I ignored them because they mattered very little to me. And they should matter very little to you. They mattered very little to my passions and dreams. I ignored them because I’ve got bigger problems to solve with Marx and Nietzsche than the few who won’t even take the time to form valid arguments that aren’t designed to uplift themselves. I ignored them because no matter how many more insensitive statements they throw at me, I’m still going to be a BA [Insert undergraduate degree here] student, and proudly so.

To the people I mentioned in my speech and somehow stumbled upon this, hello. I do not see any of you as bad people and do not mean to malign or offend you (even if you had done so to me) but I do stand firm with the things I’ve said here. I hope that one day you’ll stand witness to the beauty and wonders of the humanities and arts, and come to respect them as they should be.

I won’t add anything else because I kind of want my speech to just speak for itself (and because I’ll most likely write a separate entry on this subject further) but I hope that before people open their mouths, they realize who and what they’re putting down with their words, and for such meager reasons too.

Reaching Far and Backwards

In my English play writing class, our first assignment for the semester was to write about any person in our life that has, at some point, caused us to feel great hatred or love due to something he or she had done to us. At the time, I had nobody in mind because it had been so long since I felt greatly wronged by anybody else. It took me a long time to write this despite it being just a one-page paper because of how difficult it had been for me to reminisce and place myself back in the mindset of when I was still in high school where I still felt that feeling, at least enough to write about it.

Having said that, I no longer feel anything towards the person I chose to write about and anybody else mentioned in this entry so I hope nobody tries to make a big deal out of it. The purpose of this assignment, as was later revealed to us, was for us to figure out if we were capable of empathizing with the person we wrote about. As a playwright, being able to empathize with people, even the ones we greatly hate, is a skill one has to master in order to be able to come up with a good and realistic play.

Within one page, one must be able to introduce who the person is, what they did, and why you think they did it. I suppose I’ll just leave it to you to decide whether or not I did treat her with empathy, and whether or not I actually got the assignment right. Although I think it’s far reach.

To put in the kindest way, she was unbelievably boring. There was nothing special about her that made her stand out from the crowd for me. She was of average height with unsightly curly hair and a dark complexion. We had never been given the opportunity to be classmates, and I knew her simply because she would occasionally be a part of the top ten awardees of our year level but that hardly made her interesting in the least to me. In fact, even though we went to the same high school for four years, she had never interested me in such a way that would compel me to strike up a conversation with her. I would have probably gone through the rest of my high school days without having even paid her the slightest attention if she hadn’t taken an interest and continuously flirted with my ex-girlfriend in our junior year, shamelessly doing such bold things that made me feel disrespected, infuriated, and unsure of myself.

There were a lot of moments that made me feel so horrible that she and my ex-girlfriend were responsible for. They both liked sports, had the same kind of music taste, and clearly enjoyed each other’s company so much so that they bestowed each other with chocolates as gifts and kisses on the cheek as gratitude. I trudged through the remaining days of my high school experience, still clinging onto a relationship that was doomed from the beginning and even more so when she came into the picture. Even just seeing her pass by the hallways triggered me into a fit. Her very existence irked me and every time I saw her I wished the ground would swallow her up and that she’d stay there because I found even just her breathing offensive. But even so, at the time, I couldn’t blame her or call her out. How could I when she simply saw what I would see in that person? We were somewhere along the ripe age of fifteen or sixteen, young and naive and careless of our actions and thought nothing of how it would affect other people. She was the same as I, hanging onto the empty words of another person that kept you hoping for something because neither of us had ever been told to stay away or to give up on our childish feelings. I understood her, wanting things whether it be selfish or forbidden, and I no longer fault her for that anymore, but still I wish that the universe would keep her away for her peace of mind and mine as well.

Passengers (2016): 7/10

Starring two already established Hollywood Stars, namely Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt, Passengers is a sci-fi film taking place entirely in a spaceship that is set to arrive at its destination within the next century. The starship Avalon is boarded by 5,000 passengers and crew members, all sedated into an induced coma for the duration of the century-long journey. Jim Preston (Chris Pratt) and Aurora Lane (Jennifer Lawrence), however, find themselves woken up with 90 years left before the ship lands at a fictional planet called Homestead II. Passengers, which premiered last December, has been nominated for Best Original Score and Best Production Design at the 89th Academy Awards.

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Passengers perhaps may already be a cliche, and every possible stranded-on-a-spaceship film has already been written and produced. However,  I still happened to have found the film to be enjoyable which, to me, is a pleasant surprise seeing as I like neither science fiction nor cliches. The reason for which I liked Passengers was more than just Chris Pratt’s naked butt being flashed at the screen in all its perky and flushed glory, but because of the struggles of Jim in trying to cope with solitude and how the film showed that his selfishness was an inherent part of human nature. It was interesting to see how here was a man, all alone surrounded by nothing but lifeless machines, was not in a struggle of trying to keep his own humanity but to cope with it.

Jennifer Lawrence as Aurora was alright but I have to say Chris Pratt had totally stolen the show, not just because Chris Pratt’s character was given more screen time but because it was his flaw and humanity that really got to me. Jennifer Lawrence as Aurora was also well-written but wasn’t all that striking or interesting.

The writing in the film wasn’t the best I’ve encountered but it wasn’t unpleasant at all. Chris Pratt’s acting was commendable. His sadness, his loneliness, his guilt, his shame, it was all on point. It was very hard to pity Jim the mechanical engineer but it was also very hard to blame him for it either, for it was the very nature of human kind that brought him to that decision and I think, given the chance, many of us would act on as well. Because, truly, what lengths would we go to just to ensure our survival?

Although I was not in full support of the ending as I found it to be just a tad bit impractical, it is, however, ultimately believable and realistic (especially for the romantics). I still find the entire plot to be tragic with some very interesting points that I’ll discuss later on.

Overall, the film did pleasantly surprise me. If you’re looking for an adventurous and romantic sci-fi film with two white and famous Hollywood stars that isn’t too heavy with a happy ending but can be dissected and analyzed deeper, Passengers is definitely the film to watch.

Note: From here on, this will not be a spoiler-free review. So if you have not watched the film and do not wish to be spoiled, then do not read further than here. 

I’ll now dive deeper and discuss certain points of the film that have interested me and have garnered a few insights and comments from this judgmental brain of mine:

  • Jim’s time in solitude

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For the duration of a year and three weeks, Jim Preston is left on his own to inhabit the ship with only an android named Arthur to keep him company. Although Avalon is a high-class ship, Jim is not a high-class passenger. He, however, makes a home for himself in one of the ship’s suites by breaking into one with his convenient mechanical engineering skills and hammer.

His first few weeks at the ship is blissful, enjoying all the amenities offered by the ship to its passengers. The sleekness, the technology, and the access to such: these are all glorified during the beginning of his stay. However, the novelty of these things soon disappears, leaving Jim in a state of loneliness and dissatisfaction. This is because even though he may have satisfied his physiological needs, his need for affection and love and company is one that remains unfulfilled and therefore leaves him restless. At one point he stops taking showers, shaving, and lets his hair grow in full homelessness fashion.

He constantly craves for the company of his own kind and his loneliness eats him up from the inside out. Jim at that state reminded me of a neglected Sim with his social and hygiene need at its lowest point. It was almost comical had it not been so pitiful to see how Chris Pratt acted it out, especially when Jim had literally been standing on the edge, one pull of the lever away from taking his own life and ending it all. And this leads him to waking up another passenger, Aurora Lane, a writer he had taken an interest in a few weeks prior to his suicide attempt.

  • The Contemplation and the Action

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By no means do I condone nor support the act Jim did (which was to wake Aurora up and therefore, sentence her to a life stranded aboard the ship) but I do believe that it was a very human thing for him to do. I say this in the sense that Jim, on the brink of taking his own life, had to wake Aurora up because he knew that not doing so would lead him to his death.

Backtrack a few weeks where Jim first notices Aurora, suitably named so as she was Jim’s Sleeping Beauty. This is where his obsession with her starts. He looks her up, finds out she’s a writer, sits beside her pod as he eats while watching her  interviews. He begins to romanticize her and ends up deciding that he has fallen in love with her without so much as a conversation passing between them, not taking into account that a person’s TV personality is a lot different from who they really are.

He goes back and forth contemplating whether or not to wake her up, knowing that if he were to wake her up, he would be sentencing her to a life on that ship with him, stranded, never to land at Homestead II. His morality and desire give him a new reason to be in a constant state of unrest. Eventually, he decides against it and wills himself to forget Aurora and to leave her be in her slumber.

However, on the day he almost killed himself, a state wherein he was at his lowest, at his most vulnerable, when he no longer thought he could survive, his morality wavered and he programmed Aurora’s pod to wake her up with 90 years left on their voyage. Jim wasn’t an inherently bad person but his momentary lapse in judgment sentenced Aurora to a horrible fate. He was given the opportunity to play God and in ensuring his own survival, he risked the survival of another. And acting upon his desires, Jim’s loneliness is then replaced by guilt. The man can never win.

What really gets to me is that there had been 5,000 passengers on that ship and Jim takes an interest in Aurora and only Aurora, beautiful and young and perfect. Had it been companionship he were looking for then the other 4,999 passengers would have been alright but he chose Aurora, forced upon her his own survival. Jim didn’t want companionship, else he would have just woken up the rest of the passengers sleeping. He wanted someone to share in his loneliness, in his fate, in his sentence, and he found Aurora to be someone who could give him that, amidst the love that he craved for.

  • Arthur the Android Butler

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It was such an interesting thing to have witnessed Arthur. Props to Michael Sheen for such a pleasant and realistic portrayal of such a role. Arthur had not been the cliche android that would magically acquire human emotion despite being devoid of any humanness and I think that Arthur being like that was a central piece of the film. Had he not been so human in looks yet machine in thought, then the entire film would have all been for naught.

Arthur understands only little of any form of ethical systems that Jim and Aurora abide by. He is capable of neither guilt nor shame, and fails to see the bad in things which is why he is unable to empathize with Jim in his struggle of loneliness. Arthur contrasts so much with Jim that each interaction between the two only fuels further Jim’s need for human companionship. Jim is unable to find someone that is able to connect and relate to him, and as such he feels lonelier, as Arthur is only able to offer him a shallow reprieve from social deprivation.

  • Aurora’s Forgiveness

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12/10 did not expect them to live happily ever after on the ship. However, they did live together happily for about a year before things went sour and I suppose Aurora had unavoidably fallen in love with Jim within that time frame, given that he was literally her last option if she wanted any form of love or affection whatsoever before she died. I suppose in desperation, people can forgive other people for grave mistakes. Except still I can’t fathom how one could forgive a person for deciding your entire fate, basically giving you a death sentence, dooming you to a life of solitude and sailing but never landing, and then lying about it. I didn’t know exactly what I was rooting for, if it had been Aurora’s forgiveness or Jim’s redemption but I suppose I can never bring myself to hate Jim, especially given how he was portrayed. Damn you, Chris Pratt!

  • Homestead’s Capitalism

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The last point that I want to mention is how the film did not exactly center on capitalism but was still seemingly built around it. The starship Avalon is one that is luxurious and high-end. However, its complete amenities may only be experienced by those who paid the price for it. Both Jim and the chief deck officer Gus are subject to a small cabin with acceptable living accommodations and mediocre meals while Aurora, a gold-class passenger, receives a beautiful suite with luxurious meals all the time.

A conversation between Jim and Aurora transpires wherein Aurora tells him of how the Homestead company has made millions of billions off of people from the first planet they made, whereas Jim replies with how he is willing to pay such a price for the chance at a new life. This is where perception plays a part in determining one’s reality.

Aurora, despite herself having boarded the ship and paying for a gold class ticket, is aware of the capitalistic practices of the Homestead company. Even still, she boards the ship in the hopes of fulfilling a goal she sets for herself as a writer. Jim, a working class mechanical engineer, who did not see through the profit-oriented goals of the company, merely saw it as an opportunity to build a new life. He saw it as a fair and just deal, even if he has to give up 20% of his profit when he starts earning at Homestead II.

This doesn’t differ much from the reality we face wherein people are attracted by the city lights and let themselves be consumed with the idea of a promising and fulfilling life, only to be victims of a society that only benefits the ones on top. What’s ironic is how even though you’ve already paid the price for the destination, you end up getting stranded in the journey, losing a lot more than what you bargained for.

A Digital Outburst

I have been no stranger to the world of the internet but I must admit I never truly did let myself fully discover all of the wonders that the digital pages could offer to a deprived writer (I use this term very loosely nowadays) like me. This isn’t my first blog. In fact, this is probably around the 10th or 11th one I’ve made during my lifetime and this is most likely due to the fact that I’ve never truly been comfortable in writing about myself in such a personal yet publicized manner.

I hate giving myself away and I suppose, as an aspiring writer, I have no choice but to do just that. I will keep this blog to remind myself to continue on writing about anything I wish, all purely based on my whims and musings because that is the beauty of blogs (and writing, really): you owe nothing to anybody and are free to succumb to your desires. Until such a time that I have gathered enough courage to publish my poetry and other forms of literary works in a public platform such as this, I will have to make myself get used to that through here and through this. I suppose I just need an outlet wherein these fingers can let themselves flow freely and the words in my mind can take form, for if I suppress my need to write any longer I feel as though I may lose my mind completely (if I hadn’t already in the past).

And so I write, I write, and I write!

Here’s a hopeful toast to a year of growth, of more writing, and more opportunities to hit the snooze button, resulting from a late night post on this blog. Cheers!