There are times when Ryland would put his shirt with the back on the front especially when he wears those ones in which I cut the tag off. Those tags help Ryland tell which side goes to the back but they sometimes irritate the skin and so I cut them off. He doesn’t like messing his brushed wet hair when he pulls up his shirt over his head to wear it with the front facing the right way. So I showed him how he can flip his shirt without pulling it up over his head. He needs to pull his arms in through the sleeves one at a time and when both arms are in, he turns the shirt ‘round his neck the other way. And then he pulls out his arms out through the sleeves again.
At church yesterday, I noticed that he had his striped shirt back on. It wasn’t really that noticeable but I made the mistake telling him. He immediately pulled his right arm in through his sleeve. I told him, “No, you don’t have to. It’s alright.” But how could he pay attention (as if) to Brother Jorge now that he knew he had his shirt back on, right? There was no stopping him. So I just stood behind him trying to cover him up. I thought it was funny.
Ryland and I went with Reggie to McNally Robinson the other night. Reggie wanted to watch the free jazz concert at the bookstore where the Starlight Jazz band played that night.
Ryland was with me when I was leafing through some books and then he said that he’d go to his Kuya. I let him go but after a few seconds, this mother got worried. I took a peek where Reggie was browsing through the magazine section. Ryland wasn’t there.
Where did he wander off? I was full of fear for the next 30 seconds. They seemed like 30 hours.
I walked through shelf after shelf hoping that he was at the other end. My heart jumped when I found him there at the end of the third one. He looked like he was about to cry, but he said that he wasn’t.
What are you gonna do if you get lost, Ryland? He didn’t answer. Do you know Mommy’s name? Our address? Phone number? He recited them to me perfectly well. I told him that if he did get lost to tell those information to a grown up, preferably a lady, not a man. But then again, I thought that there are also lady kidnappers.
Was I just being paranoid? I hate the thought of losing my child. And yet I couldn’t imagine what the parents of all the missing children in this world must feel.
Movies such as White Oleander move me and make me weep. I was once again transported back to my childhood.
White Oleander is about Astrid (Alison Lohman) who was 15 years old when her mother, Ingrid (Michelle Pfeiffer), went to prison for murdering a lover. Astrid was then sent to a succession of foster homes.
I was barely a teen-ager when my parents separated and that’s when we started moving from one place to another. When Mama left for Canada, sis and I went to live with my aunt. Although we both loved Auntie and cousins dearly, it had been just hard to fit in.
Also, moving from one place to the next, we left behind belongings. And I guess the hardest part was leaving behind the friends we met. Like Astrid, there came a point when I got afraid of attaching myself too much to the people I’ve met. I just never knew when I would have to move again and then would have to let them go.
Although Mama didn’t control me like Ingrid manipulated Astrid, I told friends what Mama wanted me to tell them. That my father was abroad that’s why he wasn’t around. Being from a broken home was taboo back then.
I had a best friend during my childhood in Noveleta, Cavite. Olive and I had been friends since I was about two. We grew up together and shared our secrets and crushes. When Mama decided to leave Papa, she picked me up and Lina at school on a Friday afternoon. We left Cavite right there and then without going home to pick up our things. We didn’t even have the chance to say goodbye to anybody, including Papa and Olive. We saw each other again many times and we are still friends but we have both moved on.
When I was in high school, I met another dear friend, Estrella, who continued writing me when I moved to Manila from Imus, Cavite. I never told her the truth about my parents and when she realized that my stories didn’t tie up with one another, she started asking questions. I didn’t know how to explain everything to her. I was so confused that I told her that my life was a mess, she wouldn’t understand the situation I was in and that it was better if she stopped having anything to do with me. I underestimated her. She was hurt because I wasn’t able to trust in her. I never heard from her again. And I am sorry up to this day about what happened to our friendship.
All these years, I have met many other friends but never had one I would consider a best friend until now. I finally found one who I can talk to about anything. Elaine is one who I can confide to, share my innermost thoughts and secrets, even my personal demons and I know that she wouldn’t judge me. I hope this one stays. Even if she doesn’t, I’ll treasure our friendship forever.
Sometime in 1990, when I was still new here in Winnipeg, this Asian guy at the bus stop approached me. I was then on my way to my part-time job at McDonalds. We were the only ones on that particular bus stop. He seemed harmless and I didn’t get nervous when he started talking to me in a different language. I told him, “I’m sorry, what did you say?” Realizing that I was not from where he was, he said, “I thought you were Vietnamese.” I said, “No, I’m not.” At that time, I thought, well, I am Asian and I must have similar features with other Asians like the Vietnamese.A few years later, I was at a local Vietnamese store when a lady started talking to me in that foreign language once again. She mistook me for a Vietnamese. I politely said that I was not.
Vietnamese and Filipinos do have striking physical resemblances. And I learned that there are more similarities than that when I saw Tran Anh Hung’s The Scent of Green Papaya, Winner Camera D’Or 1993 Cannes Film Festival. This movie was set in 1951 Saigon, Vietnam.
Summary:Mui (Lu Man San) is only 10 years old when she leaves her family to take up residence as a servant-in-training. Hired by a merchant family, she is the victim of the son’s torment and a witness to both the father’s strange disappearances and the mother’s misery over her lost daughter. Yet Mui takes to her job with an almost spiritual devotion. She performs the most ordinary tasks with a delicate grace. The family’s old servant woman, Thi, teaches her how to prepare food – especially the green papaya which, when ripe is considered a fruit, but when green, is a vegetable.Ten years later, Mui has grown into a radiant, graceful woman. Dismissed by the merchant family, she is sent to work for Khuyen, a wealthy composer, for whom she harbors a secret passion. Now under Khuyen’s roof, Mui’s service becomes mingled with love. Their seduction of each other begins with slight touches and chance encounters until little by little, they become indispensable to each other.
I enjoyed watching The Scent of Green Papaya because I can relate very well to the people, the scenes and the culture. They are very similar to those of the Philippines. Rice is also their staple food and we cook our ulam very much alike. They also use mosquito nets at night. And that servant thing reminded me of the house helpers we had back home.
The young Mui was very cute and graceful. The Scent of Green Papaya is subtitled but it won’t bother the viewer that much because there weren’t a lot of dialogues anyway. Told from Mui’s point of view, I think it focuses more on her observations of life. I loved that scene when she was watching the sap drop from the papaya stem, that one when she was studying the papaya seeds, and that one when she was watching the ants carry their heavy loads. And I also liked that the seduction was shown very subtly. It was very artistic, no vulgarity.
The Scent of Green Papaya is “a wonderful and touching story critically acclaimed around the world.”
Big Fish is a story about Edward Bloom (Albert Finney) who had been known for his tall tales. As a child, his son, William (Billy Crudup), was fascinated by his stories, but when he grew up he wondered which of his father’s stories really happened and which ones were just fabrication. All through his life, Will had heard his father tell people the story of his birth – the day he caught the uncatchable fish with his gold ring. This was the story Edward was telling Will’s guests on his wedding reception. Will got upset because it was the one night that was supposed to be about him but his father stole his thunder. They didn’t speak for three years after that night.
When Edward got ill, Will came home and asked his father to tell him the true versions of things. Because Will felt that he had no idea who his father was. Now that he was about to be a father, himself, it would kill him if his son wouldn’t know him. So Will tried to piece together the stories of his father.
The young Edward Bloom (Ewan McGregor) was a man of big dreams and ambition. His adventures began when he met the giant, Karl (Matthew McGrory), and left the small town of Ashton with him when he was 18 years old. Edward came to the town of Spectre – the first time he was early and the second time he was too late. He worked in a circus where he first met the woman he was going to marry. He was drafted to the war and was sent to Vietnam where he met the “conjoined twins.”
As Will tried to learn more about his father, he learned that there was more to Edward Bloom than his tall tales. He was “a man with more determination than any man you’ll ever meet.” He was an honest and generous man who helped a town when all it’s businesses went bankrupt. He made everyday a new adventure. And every “adventure was as big as life itself.” This is the lesson that I am getting from Big Fish. We should live our life to the fullest.
Will’s questions were also answered. When Will was growing up his father was gone more than he was there and he wondered if his father ever had another family. He discovered what really happened on the day he was born. His father told him about the witch with the glass eye which revealed how Ed was gonna go but he had never told Will because it was supposed to be a surprise ending.
As Big Fish starts, Will narrated, “My father didn’t see himself in me and I didn’t see myself in my father.” I think in the end, Will did.
Ewan McGregor was very charming as the young Edward Bloom. I enjoyed watching him with that whimsical smile. Alison Lohman was very pretty as the young Sandra Templeton. And what a striking resemblance to Jessica Lange, who played the older Sandra. Big Fish is another cinematic masterpiece from director Tim Burton, the same director who brought us Edward Scissorhands and The Nightmare Before Christmas.
My favourite parts of the movie are:
The first time Edward laid eyes on Sandra and he narrated, “They say when you meet the love of your life time stops and that’s true.” Then the frame froze except for Edward. The performers stood still, the peanuts floated in the air, Ed brushed away the peanuts as he walked towards the lovely Sandra. And then everything, except Ed, was in fast forward motion. And then he told Mr. Calloway (Danny Devito), “I just saw the woman I’m going to marry but I lost her.” I felt his pain.
When he finally tracked down Sandra in Auburn and told her, “You don’t know me but my name is Edward Bloom and I love you.” I just melted.
When the young Sandra opened the window of her dormitory and there stood the young Edward outside in a yard full of daffodils, professing his love for her. Edward had learned from Mr. Calloway that her favourite flowers were daffodils. “You don’t even know me,” said Sandra. “I have the rest of my life to find out,” said Edward. How romantic.
There are also many memorable quotes in Big Fish. These are some of my favourites:
The biggest fish in the river gets that way by never being caught.
There comes a point when a reasonable man will swallow his pride and admit that he’s made a terrible mistake. The truth is… I was never a reasonable man.
The more difficult something became, the more rewarded it was in the end.
A dangerous path is made much worse by darkness.
It’s rude to talk about religion. You never know who you’re gonna offend.
The most things you consider evil or wicked are simply lonely or lacking in social niceties.
There’s a time when a man needs to fight, and a time when he needs to accept that his destiny is lost… the ship has sailed and only a fool would continue. Truth is… I’ve always been a fool.
The thing about icebergs is you only see 10%. Ninety percent is under the water where you can’t see it.
Have you ever heard a joke you heard so many times you’ve forgotten why it’s funny? Then you hear it again and suddenly it’s new. You remember why you loved it in the first place.
There are more memorable quotes here.
Big Fish is rated PG13- Parents strongly cautioned. I was alarmed by the phrase “some images of nudity” so I told my children that it’s not for kids. I guess I could have let my 15-year old watch it because it was just the naked butt of the lady in the river and that of Devito’s that you’ll see. Oh yeah, there’s a silhouette of a naked lady swimming. “A suggestive reference” may pertain to Calloway’s shaking trailer, which could suggest that someone’s doing it there, but no, there were no scenes of that kind.
- About Me
- Birds and bees
- Books, movies, music, TV
- House Hunting
- Kids say the darndest things
- Life is a game
- Memory Lane
- My guilt trip
- My life as a mom
- My Sweet Ryland
- New York
- Quotable Quotes
- Raising the 3Rs
- Reggie and his music
- Ryan in the middle
- Single Mom
- Special Occasions
- That's not even funny
- The Twilight Saga
- Working at home
- Working mom