Appreciation and Affirmation

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I realize that I might not be good at photography — yet. Nevertheless, I know that I can do better, so while I’m learning, I’ll compensate with what’s native to me — words. It all started with “monkeys go bananas for.. bananas!” Actually, it started when I started this conversation with angelicamereu:

Passenger on Foot says: Hi! Thanks for frequently visiting my blog! Sorry that it took me this long to go to yours, and boy! How I wish I got here sooner! The monkey’s fur seems to melt with the background. It looks almost surreal, but I’m not sure if that’s the right word. A picture is worth a thousand words; somehow, that one out of that thousand eludes me. I hope you get how much I like this photograph!

angelicamereu says: thank you so much, i’m really stunned, it’s great to read your words!! wow! and thx!!!

Passenger on Foot says: Ok, I think I now have the right ones: prismatic aura.

That’s it! 😀

angelicamereu says: wow, great definition!

Then, I browsed through angelicamereu’s blog and found “blue bird,” and continued the conversation here:

Passenger on Foot says: Are you based in Africa?

In my other comment, I got lost for words, but this time, I have more than “beautiful” to comment. It’s dlight-fully iridescent! Again, amazing!

angelicamereu says: no, i just spent 3 weeks in south africa last june, my guts and dreams are still there! and wow again, i love your comments, really appreciate it. i can’t find the words to tell you how much, so, just thx!!!

Passenger on Foot says: I see! Well, congratulations for having the ability to travel! I’m afraid that I’m locked in my location at the moment, but I’m trying to find good things to post and photograph.

I more a writer than a photographer (gulps at the brash declaration). I like alliteration, too. That’s why! Followed your awesome eye and perspective!

They have emotional charges — electric even — the same stuff that makes our hearts beat, making us feel alive. Alive to revel in each other’s brilliance, which is really how we can proceed in our journey through life.

Judging from her replies, I think that she was smiling when she typed them in — I’m certainly hoping so. When I comment on other people’s blogs, I always try to elaborate on how they touched me because I know that it will make them happy. I know that it’ll motivate them to keep on doing what they do. I know that it’ll inspire them to do better. I know this to be true because I feel the same electrifying and exhilarating feeling after reading comments on my own blog. Am I that different from other people to be the only one to feel this? I don’t think so. In fact, I think that at the core, we’re all wanting the same thing — affirmation, if not love.

By sharing this post, I hope to send a message to everyone: use your words when you well up with emotions, especially if you liked it. While I’m really wired for writing words, anyone can do it as long as the comments are written with sincerity. More than the like button, which is a recent invention to express affirmation, words have been around for ages. They have emotional charges — electric even — the same stuff that makes our hearts beat, making us feel alive. Alive to revel in each other’s brilliance, which is really how we can proceed in our journey through life.


After drafting this post, I got replies from other bloggers, specifically Lisa and Jav3d, and I’m glad that I was able to express my appreciation for their works sincerely.

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Will and Willingness

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It might not have been bravery — my declaration that I’ll start a photoblog. It may have been brashness. What do I know about photography? Point and shoot. The rule of thirds. Perspective. Framing. That’s about it. All the rest is like a statistics book; I know it has a lot of useful information for me to learn, understand, and apply, but I haven’t accessed it yet.

I think that I have the will and the willingness to see this through.

I know that I have limitations, so please pardon me if I can’t work on getting a better camera yet. Got to pay the bills first, especially my mom’s medication, so I’ll focus first on technique before the technology.Good thing that I’m willing to learn. I hope that you — my awesome visitors — could help this amateur learn. What works in my snapshots? Why? What doesn’t? How can I make it better? What tips can you give me? Oh! You can even give me an assignment and check my work. That might be fun.

I really hope that you can help me turn my brashness into beautiful photography. I think that I have the will and the willingness to see this through. And if you help me, I would be grateful from the bottom of my camera apps.

Christmas Celebration

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I’m still not a fan of Christmas as a holiday, but I am all for what it should be representing.

I was raised Catholic, so it initially makes me think of the birth of Jesus. When I grew older, it soon became a time of getting gifts. Time passed by and I got to that awkward age — too old to give gifts to, too young to have the money for giving gifts — so it became that time when I’ll either be happy to get cash or feel envious for not getting a new shirt or some article of clothing. Finally, when I got a job, I felt like it’s a time to prepare bountiful feasts for my family while giving gifts to selected people. Looking at how my perception of Christmas has changed over the year makes me feel a bit sad; it looks like a tale of how I lost my innocence.

After enduring this year full of problems , mainly my mom getting sick all the time, I now see Christmas as a time to really treasure my family. My mom, of course, for taking care of our family until now; my dad for not leaving my mother’s side; my aunt, who’s like our second mom, for assuming the care of our house; my sister for treating me to small joys throughout the year like popcorn, ice cream, and milk tea drinks; it also includes a copy of Jewel’s poetry book, which is in the picture above. I couldn’t have gone through this year without my family, and that’s what I’m celebrating Christmas for.

Hallway

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I’m in transit — at least in my mind. I’m trying to make the best choices that I can, but like what I learned in college, I can’t please everyone.

One of my so-called friends in the office got mad at me, and it led me to think that maybe, I should reassess my list of friends. It’s not because they are mean, though; it’s more on the idea that I might not really care enough about them to keep calling them friends. That thought led me to realize that being a good person isn’t the same as being a good friend. Even if they can be done at the same time, being generally nice doesn’t mean that I would stand by them all the way. On the other hand, being a good friend would sometimes mean that I should not be nice and condone their behavior. Sometimes, I should give them a piece of my mind for them to stop doing bad things.

Like what I said when I stated this post, I’m in transit. I need to arrive at a decision, maybe not right now, but still, a choice needs to be made. Hence, the picture of the office’s hallway.

Virtue, Truth, and Wine

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image I’ve been meaning to post something last week, but I got sidetracked. I rambled about excellence, and that might have been foolish of me because I fell into a trap. According to Paulo Coelho, a warrior of the light can talk to his demons and win just by letting it do the talking; afterwards, he should just walk away. I didn’t do that. I brandished the virtue of excellence at my demons, and accosted them with dagger-like words propelled by righteous indignation. Perhaps, they learned Paulo’s trick; they just sat there and listened. Then, they put the naked truth — that people won’t seek excellence the way I would because they’re not me — in front of me. It made me fume. I swore. I slandered others. And I swore some more. Thus, I’ve lost the good fight. It’s not a total loss, though. Through that day, I realized that instead of criticizing others, I just need to accept the harsh truths. Also, I need to turn my theoretical virtues into real action, not just proclaiming them. It could have saved me a lot of anguish. Now, I’ll resolve to do better. On a lighter note, I went out for drinks with a lady friend. We talked. We shared some intimate details, and though I know it was platonic, I felt glad that I can still get a lady to go out with me.

Owls and Excellence

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I’ve visited the local zoo with my adoptive daughter (well, she adopted me as her dad, really, so how can I refuse an angel’s request) and the rest of the family. I was glad to have the chance to visit the animals; it brought back a lot of good childhood memories.

However, I digress. So I’ll cut that story short, and get onto my actual topic.

I’m consumed with the thought of excellence since Friday, last week. Mostly, it’s because I see people in our office who just gets by through mediocrity. They slack off, and they even have the guts to complain about getting poor evaluations from me when they know for a fact that they didn’t do anything stellar. It just makes my blood boil after it has curdled. I was raised with an Opus Dei philosophy, so it just makes me feel indignant when I come across a culture of mediocrity. As part of my protest, I’ve been putting quotes about excellence as my chat status message, hoping to inspire even just one person to strive for excellence.

I say “strive for excellence” and not perfection because excellence is not something permanent — at least as far as I know. One day, I might be excellent, but if I’m not careful with what I do, I can fall in the same traps that mediocrity seems to lay out in front of everyone. It might be a simple headache, a shiny red balloon, or blinking at the wrong time, and what we have can be spoiled. Could we really account for all those minute variables when we sometimes forget periods after sentences or feel angry at bird poop on a newly washed car? I think not, so we can’t really be perfect — just continuously striving for excellence. Nevertheless, there’s always a vanguard for excellence, and that is vigilance.

For me, it’s vigilance against the illusion of perfection. Yes, I admit that I pride myself with my achievements, but I realize now that it’s unattainable because it’s either the absence of fault or the completion of all requirements. Saying that someone is perfect is just simply turning a blind eye on a minute flaw or saying that a high standard was met when in fact, it’s just partially fulfilled. It’d take an infinite amount of energy for us to really achieve that, making me think that it’s just God who has the capacity to achieve. So really, we can only strive for excellence.