Monday, September 18, 2006

Reveling in the Ordinary

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Sign at the Bengali white tiger enclosure at the Singapore Zoo

During the weekend, I learned several valuable lessons:

1. The Singaporean government is not as omnipotent as we all think. They never managed to stop the sky from raining the past few days. The weather is now the complete opposite of what it was when I first arrived, and so far several people have complimented me on my choice of umbrella: a baby blue umbrella patterned with tiny white flowers, courtesy of the SM Department Store. ^_^ Apparently, no such umbrella exists in the country.

2. It is difficult to photograph an otter underwater. They are nature's equivalent of kamikaze divers - without the hassle of having an ideology or dying, of course. They also make a weird sound when they want something: kind of like a cross between a nosy canary and a cat in heat.

3. Tram drivers can drive through the zoo with the speed and panache of Michael Shumacher. O_o I have no idea how much wildlife we actually ran over.

4. Contrary to popular belief, warthogs are not smelly.

5. I have to go back to the Singapore Zoo Gardens again. One day is not enough to go through ALL of the enclosures.

(Animal photos over at Multiply, of course. ^_^

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Poetry mentor Gandalf (Joel Toledo, for those who aren't on the inside joke) won second prize in the Bridport Poetry Awards for his poem, "Same Old Figurative" - the first Filipino to actually place within the competition. He was chosen from over 5,600 entries all over the world. ^_^ Send your congratulations over his way.

I told him about my inability to produce anything of value, at least in the poetic vein, ever since I finished my undergraduate degree. (In fact, I am suffering this inability to finish ANYTHING CREATIVE right now, except for the occassional hack article and school requirement.) And he told me, "Whatever you see there (referring to my first collection of poems) that's distinctly Froda, pursue it and write the next poem."

Sigh. Same old figurative indeed.

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Things that are currently waiting for me:

1. A response paper to be drafted for Wednesday
2. Finish reading Chinua Achebe's Things Fall Apart
3. Re-read Aghda Shahid Ali's The Half-Inch Himalayas (which I am not enjoying - he seems distinctly pretentious and trying too hard to be poetic)
4. Eat dinner

Things presently occupying my mind now:

1. Dinner is on the kitchen table
2. America's Next Top Model: Cycle 6 is on in thirty minutes
3. I have to write that damn response paper O_o

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