Today marks the second week of my liberation into unemployment. Half of the time I am happy. The other half is spent feeling guilty for being unproductive. This is purely self-inflicted since my parents have so far made no comment, or even so much as implied by their actions, anything about my being home again. I didn't think it would be so hard to shut down the capitalist slave app in my brain. Maybe I am trying too hard to be alternative and it's not the lifestyle for me. More likely I am not trying hard enough. You know things are shit when you can't tell the difference.
But really I feel like I have accomplished nothing of significance. You could say I am in a state of somnolence although that wouldn't be very accurate as my mind is on overdrive. Lethargic passion if you can reconcile the two would be a good way to put it. Here is a track to illustrate what I am trying to get at:
At least I haven't been completely adventureless and I am glad because if there's anything worse than being unproductive, it is being counterproductive. Duh.
Mission No. 1: Install Ubuntu. They make it sound like a breeze to switch and maybe they are telling the truth, but things are never easy for me and this was no different. It took me a whole day to get the spare PC in our condo running on Ubuntu, in the process carelessly locking everyone out of my sister's computer.
Drew - 1, Machines - 1
Mission No. 2: Say goodbye to my boys. Neil, Santiago and his interim girl Victoria, and I drove to Makati for some "authentic" Japanese food. Tucked away in a nondescript corner of Makati, on the corner of Pasong Tamo and Amorsolo streets (across Makati Cinema Square, which ironically has no cinemas) is a place called Little Tokyo. The entrance is a small fake bridge and a tori facing the street. Through the traditional Japanese gate is a driveway which leads to a courtyard hidden from street view. We chose the busiest (and cheapest, I think) restaurant and it wasn't bad at all. The waitresses all chorused a Japanese greeting as we entered and led us to a private room with sliding panels and a low table. Some unsolicited advice: don't order the rice toppings you can find in Japanese fast food menus, it tastes the same. Try the ramen instead but only if you're prepared to finish a ginormous bowl of it! Afterwards we checked out MCS cos I'd never been and I wanted to see the DVDs. The selection is good but I thought the hawkers, almost half of whom were trannies, too aggressive and almost scary.
Drew - 0, Trannies - 1
Mission No. 3: Return to Cebu. This should have been straightforward really but I did not count on both my eyes still being bright red on the day of my flight. I wasn't thinking at all really and when I checked in the woman at the counter asked me to drop by their clinic and get clearance from the doctor, a middle-aged woman who probably was kindly but was unfortunately a stickler for rules and therefore immune to my pathetic groveling. I felt like dying right then and there. But I have a very important job interview tomorrow, I said as hopelessly as I could. Tell them you need to defer it for medical reasons, that's all. Some people have no heart at all. But I am not so easily deterred. I went back to the flat to rally my spirits and come up with a plan of attack.
A few hours later, armed with dark sunglasses and a different outfit, I tried to check in again. My heart was beating so fast as I walked up to a different counter and a different girl. I handed her my ticket as nonchalantly as I could. She looked at it and said to the man beside her, I have a no show on the morning flight, shall I check him in? But the man waved her on and she went on typing away. I still could not breathe. She handed me the boarding pass and smiled. Mister, can you please remove your sunglasses for a while, I need to check your eyes. HOLY SHIT. So it was back to the clinic and I almost felt like giving up. It would be humiliating to face the same doctor again. I could almost imagine her clucking as she ticks DENIED BOARDING on the clearance form and saying, so you think you can sneak through just like that? But the door opens and I walk in and it's a man sitting at the doctor's desk. I mutter a quick prayer of thanks to whoever decreed that doctors should pull several shifts at different clinics.
I hand the man my forms and explain that he needs to clear me for boarding because my doctor has informed me that my conjunctivitis is past the contagious stage. I see, I see, he tells me as he scans my forms and then, you aren't Stephen's son are you? And I could almost jump for joy at that moment for the man sitting in front of me is Dr. Dolittle, who used to be assigned in Cebu and play golf with my dad. He shines a light in my eyes and after I inform him that it is the eleventh day my eyes have been red and that I have been applying meds for five days he decrees that the infection is subsiding and I should be good to fly home. Sometimes it surprises me the things that doctors don't worry about. Anyway we chat for a bit while the nurse applies a cold compress to my eyes, ostensibly to lessen the redness but I maybe just so he could be said to have done something.
Drew - 1, Airlines - 0
Mission No. 4: Job interview. So the first interview here was with the area sales manager and it went well. Maybe it was a bit too easy leaving me completely unprepared for the next round which was with the national sales director. To illustrate:
NSD: What was the last book you read?
Me: Well the last book I finished was Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis...
NSD: Was it a good?
Me: Yes, in fact they made it into a movie back in the 80's. (Yes because books are good if they make them into movies, like Twilight and The Notebook)
NSD: Who is Drew when he is mad?
Me: Growing up, the most sacred rule we had at home was no hitting and until now, when I get mad, I just shut up and internalize the anger. (What the fuck?)
Just to stay positive, I feel like I am so getting hired. We'll see.
Drew - ?, Job - ?