This is basically a list of the people, who had influenced me one way or another, whom should I be thankful for, and whom should I blame (!) for making me who I am today. Haha! This is something I’d tried doing eons ago but apparently, it was never finished (until now?).
This part is dedicated to those people who has/had been with me during my SSC days. Next part will be on my UP life and college years.For Pacquiao’s sake, forgive my grammar, Math people hate English, ok? Besides, I never really wanted to be a writer, a journalist, or whoever writes! Warning, this is too long!
1. Mama – She asked me once during my senior year if I would graduate as the class valedictorian. During that moment, I never really knew what would happen so I told her,” Sana, pero wag na lang tayong umasa.” But I knew then that I had a crack at that goal. She never thought I could make it. Until one day, she saw my name on the top of our batch list.
2. Papa – Pap would be home by 6 PM, every Friday, after duty, so I should come home earlier. He would do me some favors i.e. skipping chores if I could come home earlier than Ate Jika would. That’s how Fridays go back then – a race for favor. Also, he allowed me to spend some overnights, watch some concerts and travel to some remote places. My mom never did. Haha!
3. Ate Ines – We shared the same Grad party but I don’t care. She’s the closest to me so i didn’t mind. She handed me her cell phone once because I lost mine. For a couple of times. Am I clumsy or what?
4. Ate Jika – She belonged in the top section in her batch for three straight years. But in her last year in SSC, she was displaced to another section. My mom was pissed, of course. Mama went to Ate’s adviser and tried to talk it over. But to no avail, she stayed in the 2nd section. I was in my 3rd year then. Mama was so pissed off she never really talked to her. And me. I don’t know how I was dragged into the problem but that incident became the turning point of my SSC life. From then on, I knew I needed to prove something. And the rest is history.
5. Sir Regala – Speaking of History, he was my history teacher during my 1st and 3rd year in SSC. He always believed in me. Mon dieu, he basically told the whole school my dilemma on which university I should enroll in. Haha! During the announcement of UPCAT results, he told me,”Kung hindi ka papasa ng UP, ipapasara ko na ang SSC!” This guy really had some serious confidence in me. Thanks sir!
6. Angel – I firmly believe that she was the only one who truly knows me back then. (Meron pa bang iba?) Haha! One simple stare and voila, I knew what she was thinking. I helped her in every possible way I could. And she did the same for me. For some time then (Dyordz vs Stabilo?), she hated me for acting childish. But I never did.
7. Kei – He made me look cool when every thought I am the geekiest kid in town. Haha! I used to sing *ahem* in a band with Kei and that was really one of the few moments people knew I had some singing prowess. I used to sleep over in their house to do our final papers and reports because we (me, kei, lobo) are the only one who takes the project so seriously. I felt really close to his dad then because I used to hang out in their house with our classmates and sing and relax and chill.
8. Kristian – Kamute as we fondly call him. He consoled me during my lowest points, when I was struggling with my acad stuffs and my acadteam stuffs. He always tried to make us smile and fair enough, he did well. We did share some Ateneo memories and Baluga Village treks. Haha! I recently stormed my friendster inbox and saw a message from Mutz and he was saying sorry. I don’t know what happened then and for whatever that is, you’re forgiven.
9. Erin – I am two years her superior but the age gap never really interfered us to get close. We (Ruth and I) started this AcadTeam summer camp which aims to prepare AcadTeam members in their future endeavors. Apparently, Erin was one of those who trusted us and we became instant friends since then. That summer camp was a pivotal point in our SSC life because it provided 3 valedictorians, 2 salutatorians, and countless honor awardees.
10. Zenjie – I was a father to a child a year younger than me. And he followed his father’s foot steps to become another SSC valedictorian. One memory I couldn’t forget was when we conspired to be teammates for a competition. The competition was intended for pairs, not for a team, so Ruth, Steph, moi and Zenjie needed to split up into two groups. We tried to manipulate the random selection but I ended up with Ruth as my partner. Eventually though, we won in that competition.
11. Ruth – We shared some crying times when we slid down in the rankings. She cried when I tried to use and finish our unfinished Research paper onto our Physics class. Being AcadTeam teammates, we tried to defend our right to compete to Sir Wendell but we failed. But we never showed we’re beaten. And I should be thankful to those dramatic moments. But more than the drama that was, we shared the most triumphs I’ve had in my SSC life.
12. Rae – I envied her once because she was most loved by my best friend then. But we remained good friends ever since. Ironically, I felt closer to her more than to my best friend during our senior year. We shared some abortionist hunting experience, plus the effort group’s most effort projects ever! Haha! I really thought this girl (or boy?) helped me achieved some of my personal goals. Alam mo na yun!
13. Mike – My SSC life would never be complete without mentioning Mike. He used to be my closest friend then. He was my shock absorber then, sucking up all the negative energy around me. He was a perfect friend except for one thing. He was way too passive. I acted bullish, he never complained. I did something wrong, he never complained. And the shock absorber thing backfired against me. Kumbaga, quota na ko! And I was sorry for that.
14. Nina – We got along pretty well. She really saved me quite a few times when I spent all my money for food and she’d end up paying for my fare. I always thought she was the “deepest” girl that I ever knew. The deepest insights came from her. She always tells me when I am mean. She was my emotional guard then. And I missed that emotional guard thingy.
15. April- I usually call her Apjoy. She was the first person to approach me and ask my name when we were freshies then. I, mike and Apjoy are best friends then. We would sing “Cry me a river” during breaks in the Math Park. She was my badminton companion. Badminton made us closer. We played Badminton during Intramurals and we won. She was my coach, on and off court. She tells me to relax and have time for myself. She called me desperate once, and I know I was. Haha! We remain good friends up to now.
16. Anthony – Wala lang! We had an epic fight over these words. And the he-bitch in me prevailed so I fought back though I knew it was my fault. But we got over that thing, getting back to our usual selves. Before, as I made a shift from Dyordz to Stabilo, we remained good friends. Now, I’ll admit, we did cheat during quizzes. Everyone does. But we helped each other then. Cheating (in quizzes) was never a good thing, but we believed, it wasn’t that bad either.
17. Steph – She always amazed me with her work and study habits. She taught me how to be principled yet humble and to stand for whatever I believe in. She was my other AcadTeam teammate and we shared some winning moments together. Though she was my closest competitor for the top honors, we never really talked about that thing. We remained good friends throughout our SSC years.
18. Monica – In a place full of Grade Conscious and Overly Competitive individuals, isn’t it great to find a friend loyal and understanding. She always lends her ears whenever I needed someone to talk to. She was my seatmate for three years. We always talk about stuffs and our future plans and our teachers and our classmates. Basically, tsinismis namin kayo! Haha!
19. Mam Mye – She wrote me a letter about me giving up easily. I knew she would understand me well for she was an Ate to me. She was very kind to me and she would be very malambing at times. She once told me she would fail me so that I would not leave SSC. I never really wanted to leave SSC.
20. Mam Amy – She was the other mother I wished I had. Though no one could ever replace my mom, she somehow managed to make me feel so much loved and so great. She always believes in me and I do thank her for doing so.
21. Mam Bognot – She gave strong words so annoying and yet I believed her and I listened to her. I was never the listener type but with Mam Bogs, I managed to survive the whole period without my mind floating somewhere else. There was one time when she almost caught me eating inside the class. I pretended my head is aching while chomping the last bite of cookie I am eating.
22. Joed – He was my Da Vinci mate. I would call him every time I need to go to Angeles. He would go out of his way to wait for me in front of our house cause if not, I would be so late. He would make tsismis about SSC stuffs and I would feed on the info and tell some others as well. Haha! I remembered when we were rejected from watching The Da Vinci Code because it’s an R18 film and we were young then and we would fake our age. We ended up watching X Men III though. Haha!
23. Gail – She would pinch me in my cheeks and would call me baboy but I never got angry to her. Cause I get free food from eating her lunch! Haha! I consider Gail to be one of the nicest friends I had. Bad thing, she never really went out during Saturdays (because of her religion) and she missed all of the Saturday fun! Haha!
24. Tipay – He was my twin brother when I could still catch up with his height. Though he was the bully, he never tried bullying me. We were close then. Ateneo bullying trips? Haha! Had he been a little nicer, he would be as good as I was. Joke! Haha!
25. Cindy – She listened to me every time I am trying to say something. We would go home together with Gail and other Mabalacat people and share some bonding moments together. Once, I felt lonely inside our class because of the decisions I made in the past. And she made me feel I belong in our class.
More people I should be thankful for…
Dennis, Jerome, Mam Elsa, Lobo, Ate Kaye, Eguia, Venny, Gela, Joar, Rhoma, So, Kata, Claud, Mam Leigh, AJ, Suyen, Magju, Janine, Ielle