A Birthday Greeting from Manila

 

35xxxv. one ok rock.

Photo by Nessa Gabrillo.

 

Dearest Taka,

First of all, I want to call out to the great Suzaku-sama, Byakko-sama , Genbu-sama, Seiryuu-sama, Zenki-sama, Kame-sama, Son Gokou-sama, Sailor Mars-sama, Clow-sama, Lupin-sama, Kenshin-sama, Belldandy-sama, Tamahome-sama and to Voltes V to grant me all the chakras, nens, and good luck I need to have a 100% probability that this letter can at least catch your attention.

As of the time of writing, I am only able to muster 0.0001% probability from the said Gods. Maybe I also need to call on all the Mushi, the Kyojins, maybe even Escaflowne, the Gundams and Evas to send some positive vibes to this letter’s crusade.

But kidding aside, and no matter what the odds are, whether this eventually reaches you or not, I am still writing it.

And before anything else, I just have one message for you on your birthday on the 17th:

just enjoy it.

Well I know you are currently on tour so I am sure you are having the time of your life. Just continue to smile to attract more positive karma. This year, I know that the sheep will continue to bless us, those who are born in the year of the dragon.

And by the way, please do keep that smile, I like it when you do that. 🙂

Alright, I already said a lot but I haven’t introduced myself. My name is Sheen from the beautiful city of Manila in the Philippines.

I was introduced to your music from “The Beginning,” thanks to the first Rurouni Kenshin Live Action movie. I was such a fan of the anime that I was thrilled when the live action was released in the Philippines in 2012.

I started listening to your songs then. That was the time when it finally began.

Two years after, in around mid-2014, I decided to quit my second job. And I was depressed again afterwards. Well, I was always depressed whenever I quit my job. It seemed like what I finally found wasn’t what I wanted. It’s that so-called quarter-life crisis, which is making the life of 20-somethings miserable.

And I continued being a useless human being and locked myself up in my room for the next two months.

One gloomy evening, as all the rest were, I was listening to your songs and was struck by these words:

Can’t take your time what are you waiting for? It’s a waste of time for you blaming yourself.

Just hold on tight, it can be all right. Yes, try to try, keep moving on.

Are you ready now? We are ready now for tonight.

And it was like I was awakened from a bad dream. There came a realization so strong that I was instantaneously headbanged back to reality.

Yes I was wasting my time and blaming myself for things that I shouldn’t be worrying about. And yes, all that I needed to do was to hold on.

And then the positivity continued as Otomo-sensei, your friend Takeru and the rest of the cast visited Manila for the Asian premiere of Kyoto Inferno. I found something that I want.

Keishi Otomo

Posting for the nth time. 🙂 Photo by Ami Gatchalian.

Right there and then, I knew I had already overcome my karasu and finally was living again in the real world.

But real world had not lost its cruelty.

2015 came. The first quarter of this year was actually a roller-coaster ride of emotions. And it ended with another mighty long fall down to the bottomless pit of hell. It seemed that all the negative emotions from work, health, family and life converged to give me my fifth wave of quarter-life crisis. Now, I’m stuck in the middle, again. Ugh.

And just when I am back to black again, and can’t see what’s around me anymore, I heard your voice again:

GET UP! GET UP! GET UP!

And again:

It’s another day, another life. You gotta live it to the fullest.

WE’LL NEVER BE AS YOUNG AS WE ARE NOW.

And again:

DREAM as if you’ll live forever and live as if you’ll die today.

And then that was it. Suddenly I was breaking past the lies. I was depressed again because I had completely forgotten how to DREAM. When did I stop searching for miracles?

All I could say is that you never fail to take my hand and help me make it back again.

Everything will be alright tonight. Let’s start it now. It’s not too late.

You keep on reminding me of that very reason that keeps my heart beating, that thing that I’d risk everything for.

And then you released your seventh album.

We can be the change we needed.

We’ll fight fight till your fears go away, whatever it takes. We’ll fight fight ’til we see another day.

And right there and then, I told myself that I would continue to support your band, so that you could continue creating songs that help people like me, millenials like us, to fight the challenges brought by this b*tch called life.

I guess I’m ending this letter here. And I’m really wishing you could drop by Manila some time. Filipino fans are dying to meet you in person. If not, I’ll just find other ways on how I could hear these fascinating words of encouragement, and the music accompanying it, live.

So to ONE OK ROCK, to you, to Toru, Tomoya and Ryota, どうも ありがとう ございました for keeping me sane.

And once again, happy birthday, Taka-kun. 🙂

 

 

 

 

Dreaming with you,

sheen name copy

 

 

 

 

 


All songs and lyrics by ONE OK ROCK:

The Beginning
Stuck in the Middle
Kimishidai Ressha
Karasu
Mightly Long Fall
Decision
C.H.A.O.S.M.Y.T.H.
Suddenly
Memories
Yes I Am
Cry out
Fight the Night


 

The author had also posted this open letter in another site called “Nimotsu Counter.” To access the post, kindly click here.

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The Wall

At Fuerza de Sta. Isabel, Taytay, Palawan.

 “What do you think you are doing?!”

 There’s the female voice inside my head again.

“Hey! Answer me!”

I cannot remember a thing. All I know is that my eyes are widened, as if shocked and staring blankly onto the blue sky above. Tears are flowing non-stop, making my sight more and more defocused.


This post had been transferred by the author to another blog named “Nimotsu Counter.” Who is the female voice? Who is the girl lying on the ground and crying? To follow the article, kindly click here.

Caloy’s Battle

mouth copy

It turned out that the incident with Auntie Beth (can be read in Caloy, The Infamous Master of An Infamous Art) had other effects on poor Caloy.

At an early age, Caloy learned that words, specially spoken ones, could hurt him.  And these words came after he made something not pleasing, at least to Auntie Beth’s eyes.  And so from then on, he tried to perform things that would produce only positive remarks from people around him.

Through the years, Caloy learned that acts close to perfection yielded the most sympathetic remarks.  Everything must always be right.  Everything should always be the best.

At first, he was glad he was able to sustain perfection and the wonderful words about him. And he started loving it.
Along this road to perfection, Caloy learned that failure is a threat to the continuous flow of perfectionism and compliments.  So from then on, failure was ousted from his vocabulary.

And if spoken words, can hurt, they can also cause failure.  So from then on, Caloy became cautious about each word that came out of his mouth.  Because of this he developed a filtering system that would select only the best words to come out of him.
At first the filtering system did a great job of making Caloy sound very intelligent. It helped his perfectionist side a lot.

Here’s how it works.  When Caloy has something in mind, he would feed that to the filtering system, and then the system would choose the words or rephrase it before letting the mouth blurt it out.

One day, Caloy was surprised that what came out of his mouth was completely different from what he meant.  He wanted to say that things were not ok with him but his mouth blurted out that he was just as fine. He tried to check the filtering system but it simply won’t allow him.  And the more he tried to resist, the more his words were being rephrased as to none of the original intention was left.

Caloy, being convinced that he already cannot do anything about the filtering system, decided to target his mouth.  He tried to feed his thoughts directly to his mouth. But it was not easy.  The filtering system had already occupied it, even building a strong defense around it.

Caloy did not give up.  Soon the filtering systems’ defense was damaged.  But this only made the system mad.  As revenge, it shut the mouth completely, not letting any word come out of it.  And to not generate any suspicions from the people around, the system implanted a large smile on Caloy’s mouth.

Because of the smile, people thought that there was nothing wrong with Caloy.  And that was the start of thoughts being unspoken and feelings being unexpressed.

It went on for a lot of years.  For some time, Caloy became tired of fighting against this filtering system.  But I am glad to say that he resumed his battle just recently, and this time, there is no stopping him from regaining his mouth and the power to push words through it freely… words that come from the deepest parts of his heart.

And I am glad that he is very determined now.

 


Day 41 of the 365 Challenge