Category Archives: Mixtapes and Memoirs



The weekend that just well, ended, has been the absolute definition of berserk. This is ironic because I’m supposed to be on some faux cerebral holiday (I filed eight days leave off work and was approved) and yet I know deep-down in my gut that I’ve got no room in my head for vacation. Fine, I confess to spending the first three days just bumming around the house like how my good ol’ previously-unemployed self used to do daily prior to me being corporate slave ver.2.0—movie marathon like there’s no tomorrow and sleeping for hours on end like it’s nobody’s business. Eight movies later and I’m already feeling rewarded and wait for it—relevant! Although who am I kidding, I know very well that I’m just bracing myself for a crazy 48-hour schedule of non-stop commitments and long-awaited life plans.

So to give you a good idea of what I’ve been through, here’s everything in a nutshell sequence: ‘Dawn Watch’ Church Worship Vigil on the wee hours of Saturday morning gave me a good jumpstart, and then I went straight to a Christening celebration of a family friend’s kid as I promised to be a ninang, and then I went all around Cubao searching for Camp Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo High School. I got stuck with the metro traffic for three hours and had to head-straight for the mall to do some shopping and to have Dinner by myself at Kenny’s while reviewing. And then I went back to the office in the evening to get some stuff from my locker. I’m so dead-tired that I ended up sleeping at the lounge and decided it’ll be better to spend the night there. Sunday Morning at 3am, I got up and had to wait for half an hour before I found a cab which took me to back to CGEAHS. At thirty minutes past four, I’m having some last-minute breakfast at the nearby 7-11 feeling nauseous with anxiety and my entire body hurting from sleeping uncomfortably at that strange bed at the office lounge. 6:30 am was my D-Day. There I was, sitting at Room number 5, shading circles on my answer sheet for three hours, praying inside my head, ‘Lord, please, let me pass my Civil Service Exam.’

But I still think that the most amazing part of my weekend is still the peace and calm that filled me all throughout that crazy 48 hours. Sure, I blacked out the moment I set feet on my bedroom when I got home, but wow, I’ve never been so grateful for such energy. Nine months ago my life has been all over the place, but I’d like to believe that now I’m finally heading somewhere—someplace beautiful.

Also, another mixtape after ages! These ten songs I’ve had on repeat are great mind-stimulators and stress-relievers so you might wanna try ‘em next time you’re having a berserk weekend too!  Read the rest of this entry


Myself, Homewards



I know I have ignored and avoided you like the plague, but Blog, I still love you, and I hope you understand that my life right now is the messiest it has ever been by far in my twenty-one years of existence, so I needed time away to become a better, more improved edition of myself.

I don’t like divulging details and any unnecessary drama because I’m no celebrity; I am only a blogger who likes to share my musings on things that charm me. But I guess sometimes we all need our special platforms of healing, and in my case, I hope this could be one of my avenues to pick pieces of myself back. Here are ten songs that helped me got through the many weeks of anger, sadness and vulnerability. Here’s to liberty, endurance, and faith! Read the rest of this entry

The Mayhem and Magic of Weddings


Zaquita-Obra Nuptials (December 10, 2011)

I’ve been ranting repeatedly on twitter a few weeks back about suddenly getting an influx of wedding invitations, like there’s a national conspiracy being brewed against me. Well, if you ask a girl who just had a boy haircut and has been perpetually single all her life to be a bridesmaid thrice, chances are she’ll get pretty cranky, you know.

But anyway, I’m glad I made it through all of three weddings in one piece. The last wedding was actually one of the most beautiful I’ve ever seen in my life. So grand yet so intimate. I actually had to choke back a few tears during the moment that the groom was giving his personal speech of vows to his bride. “Salamat, kasi pinili mo akong maging first and last boyfriend mo. Kahit wala kang sense of direction, binigyan mo ng direksyon ang buhay ko,” he says in between tears. And yeah sure, cheesy stuff is cheesy, but it just totally killed me. Sapul sa puso eh. Will I ever hear those words from a guy?

It also had me thinking about my future other half, should there ever be a chance for us to meet. On the drive home that night after the wedding, I was so lost with this thoughts but ended up thinking about songs instead, about what defines me at the moment and what I want to be played in my wedding, in case I’ll be married someday. Yes, definitely just for emergency purposes.

So here’s my wedding inspired mix tape, ya’ll. What’s yours?  Read the rest of this entry

Fictional Farewells


Yes it’s pretty much a joke, but that’s my official birthday cake for this year, courtesy of my uber-honest girlfriends who dropped by at my place minutes before midnight to celebrate the countdown to my turning twenty-one last September tenth. Oh, how I love them to pieces.

Still, getting another year older makes me cringe a bit despite all the goofball-cheer effort I’m exerting to welcome it with arms-wide open. There’s just something so plain scary with growing up that feels maddening sometimes; like I’m being pulled away towards another far-away; like I’ve got a time-bomb waiting for me to say goodbye to being a kid. And this makes me secretly sad. Ah, look at me getting all philosophical and pensive again!

And when was the last time I made my last mixtape, by the way? Goodness, I feel so ancient. Here’s the set of songs I’ve been abusing on my playlist for the last couple of weeks. On a totally irrelevant sidenote, though: Forgive me, my dear blog, for having abandoned you too long. I swear I’ll make it up to you. I swear.

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Monotony versus Messy



Besides the fact that I do have alarmingly-high potential levels on Bipolarity, is it scientifically possible to feel very happy and very worn-out at the same time?

I asked myself this question one Monday while I was having late lunch by myself on nearly-empty diner. Truth be told: I have a freakshow relationship with monotony that I find it excruciatingly hard to swing between one emotion to the next. How do I love and hate thee? Let me count the ways. I like round-the-clock security, my comfortable patterns, healthy habits, strongly-structured optimism, consistency with life in general; the firmness. But I hate monotony for a couple of reasons too: the addiction, the tyranny, the can’t-live-withouts, the dependency bordering on parasitism, the tiredness, the sudden desire to breakaway from the steel permanence of things. Hence, this failed attempt at articulating my bi-monthly existentialism through a song set without a theme.

This playlist is a mumble-jumble of epiphanies that kept my mind safely at bay for the last couple of Mondays, midnights and mornings. Themeless as it is, they run from feel-good happy to soul-haunting sad. From one song to another, I could almost hear a whispered answer to my dilemma: Yes, we humans are such messy creatures when it comes to feelings. And I just woke up one day, grinning at myself, realizing—messy, the alter-ego of our monotony, makes us beautiful, too.  Read the rest of this entry

Look, Happiness is making a comeback


Mixtape: July 1-15.2011

Time is such a cheater. I just woke up a few days ago, flabbergasted at the reality of my own swift life; Christmasy thoughts are still fresh to me and whoah, we’re halfway through the year already? It’s funny what we forget. Most days drag by, but in retrospect, I think it’s mostly the other way around: moments fly and so much of our prayers have a lot to do with begging time to go on a standstill.

These days I feel like dancing. And I know, I know, how cliché of me. Warm July gives me good vibes, and I really like what’s happening lately. Sure, I’m still struggling to keep my social life in balance, but it gets better. I believe it will get better. Here’s some of the songs keeping me hopeful and, on a grateful note, happy.

And yeah, that’s a picture of my mom eating ice cream on a beach shore. She’s the cutest.  Read the rest of this entry

Of singsong-induced shivers: Why my heart always goes back to OPM


MIXTAPE:  June 1-31.2011

Sure, even musical boundaries have to bleed a little; it gets a little embarrassing to admit how we are such screaming-hot devotees of the international music scene when all along we’ve been conceited strangers to the home-grown sound forever serenading us from the backyards of our brains. I, like most Filipinos are, am profoundly guilty of this crime—we’re always judging; we’re always thinking our bands are not good enough; our lyrics, shallow; our style, conventional. This is not always the case, I’m learning, as I find myself leaning closer than ever to OPM these days. We’ve all had our childhood, our prepubescent phases and whatnots. Hey, I may not be a Mozart nor a Morissey, but even I could tell that nothing hurts better than words spoken by the very language rolling off our tongues. Heartstrings breed on Familiarity, methinks. And I guess at the end of the day, the songs that matter most will always be the ones hardest to shake off your head because it lingers in the heart for too long. Admit it or not: Old and new OPM songs are sung in the plainest of words with a clarity so painful, a purity so intimate.

And say it with me now: OPM brings on the nostalgia like no other. It’s amazing how songs can bring you back memories so differently woeful and refreshing all at once; you’re not holding onto them—they’re holding you.

Here’s a mixtape of my favorites: some of the most heartbreaking anthems, odes to oddity, requiems to sadness, myths and memories.  Read the rest of this entry

Like a Late-night Train Ride


MIXTAPE MAY 1-31.2011

Like a Late-night Train Ride by dardenitaaa

How the month of May happened to me in fragments: I painted my toenails red. I procrastinated way too much. I splurged on summer dresses and immediately regretted it because I should’ve spent it on books. I overslept. I wrote really short poems. I wanted to watch sappy romantic flicks but changed my mind before I downloaded anything. I thanked God for the heavy rainfall. I came back to school to have my graduation picture taken. I missed all my friends. And I tried—to reconnect, to fight the gaps and to feel like everything mattered again. I really did. Above all, I listened—to hearsay, to 6 o’clock news, to sobs, to thunder, to my own pulse, to music that made me feel strangely surreal and infinite. Perhaps that’s why May has been like a late-night train ride in so many ways—tiring, pensive, quiet. And no matter how pretty the blurry metro lights are from my moving window, there’s always that oddly alarming and all the while comforting solace in being alone in a thick sea of strangers; like I’m lost in nowhere, but I feel like I’m almost home.  Read the rest of this entry

Bummer Summer


MIXTAPE: APRIL 16-30. 2011

Bummer Summer by dardenitaaa

Tsk. I know this is horribly late and I know I’ve been seriously out of the blogging loop these days; Thanks to Climate Change and to the randomness of my life, my moods lately have been just as lukewarm as the alternating weather. Seriously, Hard rainshowers this week, recordbreaking Metro heat the next. Yeah, even my mental umbrellas are having an identity crisis. Whatever happened to Constancy? Oh well. If there’s anything steadfast about my current patters, it seems to be my recent inclination with overly-sentimental, cheesier-than-thou love songs, which is odd cause I’ve never been too fond of them, because there’s no reason for me to. So there, please pardon the romanticized playlist I’ve got this time, and let’s all indulge in singing our hearts out, yes?  Read the rest of this entry

Designing Accidents


MIXTAPE: APRIL 1-15.2011

Designing Accidents by D.Av

Sometimes, learning comes with neatly-ribboned revelations. And sometimes, it comes in ugly bandages and bloody knees; The little lessons of life, as I’ve come to know it, is in the everyday madness of blissfully mundane routines and the once-in-a-while snippets of unpredictability. So okay, I’ll stop sugar-coating the motorcycle accident I got into two weeks ago, but hey, I’m grateful I’m safe and still somewhat sound—I’m recovering fast, although my left arm is still basically useless at the moment. Ah, the price of wanting to be a badass biker-girl. Sadface. Some things can wait—God tells me this every time I impatiently rush for shortcuts. Often, I get long roads, scary bridges, confusing directions, faulty brakes, and yes, painful scars, only to arrive at another point in time for the sweet truth to glisten clear before me: that a traveller should always never lose faith to get to the destination.

My playlist this time around is an odd selection that clashes from retro hippy, to rainyday jazz, to summery and spiritual, to heartbreaking and to feel-good. There’s no dominant mood in my system as of current, but I feel like singing a lot these days, and these songs are really really awesome to sing-along to, especially when you’re a bed-ridden, frustrated biker who can’t do much but laze around and daydream how productive the days could have been, if only you’ve been just a wee bit careful. Ouch.

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