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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

It's Official: I'm Retro

(Courtesy of

For my friends who I've already told this snippet to, bear with me.

I was driving along C-5 one hectic afternoon, and when I turned on the radio, Waterfalls by TLC was playing. I got out my rusty pipes and started singing my heart out - I was in the privacy of my own car, anyway, and not mutilating a song over a videoke machine, inducing homicidal rage in the neighborhood cats - and when the song ended, the DJ then said, "That was Waterfalls, from the girl group TLC...part of our Retro Day!"


The first thing that shot through my mind was, this is NOT retro. Hello. Retro would be bell bottoms, Saturday Night Fever, ABBA...until the DJ continued her spiel: "This song is 20 years old...all the way back from 1994."

What the hell, indeed. And for this DJ - who might have been barely a toddler when this song debuted, this really was a blast from the past. I've mulled about this for some time, and I think the reason I reacted so strongly is because of what it means in terms of how many years have gone by in my own life.

When talk of retro and revisits are front and center, another R word comes to the forefront: relevance. Am I no longer relevant? Will I be replaced by someone more relevant? Are my contributions less relevant now that I'm older? As my birthday tomorrow signals the inevitability of time marching on, and this being the last year I can cling on to the statement "I'm in my thirties," I find myself wondering what the hell it is I've learned about life so far.

With no embellishments, or lengthy explanations, this is what I've come up so far.

1. Life isn't fair, and it doesn't give a flying fig. Suck it up.
2. Happiness/being positive about any SNAFU is sometimes a choice. Sometimes it's hypocrisy/a lie.
3. Feelings are more important than the pop treatment we see portrayed in TV and movies. Always listen to them.
4. Families come in so much, much, much more shapes and forms than the traditional mode. In fact, the "normal, regular" family - one pop, one mum, 2 and a half kids - might soon be like Caucasians in America, a minority. Not one is better than the other. Period.
5. We all have sh*t and baggage to deal with. Knowing this helps in imbibing empathy. But sometimes, people use it as their get-out-of-everything-free-card.
6. 1000 Friends in Facebook doesn't mean you have that number of friends. The real ones are extremely rare. Seriously.
7. I've knocked fashion and material things - but let me quote a friend: "When you're sad and crying, it's better to be and do so inside a Mercedes Benz than on a tricycle with 5 other people crammed into a space meant for 2."
8. It's not wrong to want more, earn more, have more. It's just politically incorrect to declare the same.
9. Never work with friends, if you value your friendship more.
10. If you've found the one, hang on until your fingernails fall off. Besides, kung talaga siya nga, you won't have to. 

Older, not necessarily wiser, but learning that even the most effed up experiences have their value. I can live with being labeled retro - while listening to some really great music.

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