Friday, May 27, 2005

i became a zombie on my way to german class

It is that time of day when the sun, or what’s left of it, yawns in exhaustion. I am on my way to German class, in a passenger jeep that speeds through the surprisingly clear stretch of Mabini. Sugary drizzle tingles the asphalted road. The entr’acte of a full-blown summer storm, perhaps. The barely-there sun and the nimbus clouds render the whole scene in muted sepia tone. The perfect time and perfect weather for the blues. Turn up the sentimental music and bring on the pain. Get ready with sacks of anti-depressant pills. Or valium. Or pot. Or tofu. Or Chinese plastic cats that eternally swing their hands to and fro like a retard.

On a normal state of mind, I will have sunk into a fit of slight depression. But that day, I am not normal, and so I feel something worse. I feel detached. Floating. A zombie without a soul, but nonetheless riding the jeep to get to his zombie German class and endure the annoying “Fragen Sie Ihren Partner” of his zombie teacher.

No, I cannot force myself to feel sad even if I see an old woman sitting by the gutter, wearing oversized red boots, sporting a wrinkled expression of blankness and pain. Not far from her, in front of a seedy bar tended by scantily clad girls, an obese Caucasian guy is being pushed on his wheelchair by two locals like he were some white, flabby idol on a pagan procession. Everywhere I turn there are barbecue stands clouded with smoke. And beside them are street children flashing their toothless grin as they go high on rugby. All these while a bar girl belts out a Barry Manilow anthem in some dingy joint.

I cannot wallow in depression with a sight like that, on a delicious street like this where, at the rumor of rain, the bars shrink and the smug old houses sneer. So I wallow in my zombie detachedness instead. Silently observing. Wickedly flirting with the allure of the banal.

I get off and walk along Williams Street, still a zombie, the rain delicate on my zombie head. To my right is a Chinese school called The Pear Tree from whose grounds grows a gigantic mango tree. As I turn around the corner, a young gay guy goes “Pssst! Boy, pssst!” I walk past him, thinking that he is calling out to an acquaintance. Then he goes “Pssst, hey you, the guy with the Vans bag!” I turn, surprised. And he waves his hand frantically and goes “Hello!”

Now, maybe I should get depressed.

10 Comments:

At 6:03 PM, Blogger rmacapobre said...

if i wasnt learning french (and im really slow) it would have been german. i know spanish is taught at the instituto cervantes. and french is taught at the french alliance. where is german taught?

 
At 6:24 PM, Blogger slim whale said...

Goethe Institut along aurora blvd corner gilmore.

but i'm taking german somewhere else.

 
At 9:46 AM, Blogger transience said...

well, fuck me, this made me laugh! any chance of you knowing latin?

 
At 2:45 PM, Blogger slim whale said...

transience,

taught myself latin once but i stopped. had no one to practice it with. not unless i'm willing to hang out with seminarians.

would be nice, though, to study it again. :)

 
At 12:46 AM, Blogger bullish1974 said...

guttentag!
(or something like that)

 
At 7:19 AM, Blogger DLAK said...

I'm playing the new res. evil and I just spent the last 2 hours blowing zombies heads off with a shotgun. Therapy comes in many forms.

 
At 1:54 PM, Blogger transience said...

is latin righfully dubbed a dead language? considering it's only classic literature and religous institutions that seem to utilize it to a greater degree?

 
At 2:49 PM, Blogger slim whale said...

bullish,

Guten Tag auch.

DLAK,

'can't blow my zombie-head off. i'm scared of blood.

transience,

yup, it's as dead as dead can be. it has stopped evolving and creating/acquiring new words centuries ago. Even ecclesiastical latin, which is widely used in formal vatican documents, no longer develops linguistically. (hmmm, does it say something about the church, too?)

 
At 3:56 PM, Blogger transience said...

interesting thought. they say the institution evolves, but i don't really think so. most of the basic doctrines are written in stone, or else catholicism wouldn't be such a pervasive power. authority requires very deep roots. and to retain power: one of the reasons why latin was confined to such a limited number of users.

oops. sorry for being pedantic. i love how you know your languages.

 
At 8:19 PM, Blogger slim whale said...

yup, i agree.

but sometimes, the deeper the root goes, the more detached it becomes from reality, thereby forcing some people to fell the tree because of its utter irrelevance...

or it may die a natural death.

just thinking aloud.

 

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