2 May 2021


Listening to Barker ‒ Love Is a Battlefield

Earlier this year I told a couple of my friends that I wanted to treat everyone to a night out on my birthday at our favorite wine bar in Makati. But coming into March, COVID cases started to blow up in and around Manila, and eventually, restrictions started to come back. It was the one and only thing I could look forward to around that time; on top of a miserable relationship with my work and everyday social life, I came unhinged for some time.

The thing is, I wasn't even looking forward to my birthday per se; the occasion was just an excuse to have an occasion. I was and still am desperate to feel like life is worth celebrating. By the time it was already impossible to make that happen, I was still determined to make something happen out of nothing, so I decided on having dinner someplace nice. Then, I would have an excuse to dress up: I bought a Lemaire shirt off the Martin Ramirez collection (which was on the SS 2021 show! My first runway piece I believe).

My mother ended up being my date. While I don't like living with her, something about going out with her or being in a one-on-one space is still nice with her. It's not impossible to open up to her, albeit sparingly. She doesn't give great insights, but her pragmatism and just the fact that my mother is trying to connect with me can get me to stop and reflect on the conversation all the same.

I made a reservation at Antonio's, in Tagaytay. Conveniently, I live in the same province, so the drive to and from was a breeze, and wasn't complicated, restrictions-wise. Excellent space

Mama taking a photo of the sunset

This also happened to be my first time trying out fine dining. I didn't love it but it was a nice treat regardless.

Raclette with assorted jams and chutney

Lardo watermelon salad


Cream of cauliflower


40 days dry aged charcoal grilled angus ribeye steak & some gnocchi

Vin du jour !

Pavlova with kiwi, strawberry, and some other fruit I can't make out

I've always wanted to be surprised with a cake. I think it's a simple joy that goes a long way in helping me ascertain how it's like to feel loved. Since it's a bit of a faux pas for the celebrant to buy themselves their own birthday cake, I wasn't really expecting to get anything on my birthday dinner. So when the restaurant came around with a small treat at the end of dinner, I was genuinely happy to be able to do the whole candle-blowing ritual! :)

It's funny how I've been making the same wish at 11:11 every day, but the moment I was faced with supposedly the most important and appropriate time to make a wish, my mind went blank, then zeroed in on one simple thing.

Shirt from Lemaire; pants from Jil Sander; boots from CÉLINE; watch from Seiko

Before it was time to go, I got a little tipsy and asked my mother if I could open up to her about some things. I started crying in the middle of it all, and it didn't help that Mama ended up crying at the sight of me too. We have a strained past and a difficult relationship overall, but I do think I love her. I hope I can feel that with more conviction in the years to come. Whatever the case, I'm always thankful for her.

More of mama showing just whom I take after

Like I wrote on Instagram, somehow, I'm still here. So I guess, even still with a heavy heart, I have to keep going. I keep telling myself that I don't particularly want a happy and successful life; just a meaningful one. While that's still 99% true, I do wish to be happy. I want to stay happy and feel love in my heart.

Posted by Ken at 05:00
12 Apr 2021

What does it look like?

Listening to Alessandro Alessandroni ‒ Dialogues

I haven't been doing my work properly in over a month

Scratch that, I don't feel like I've ever been fully functional at work. That I'd much rather daydream and read and write about other things than what I ought to do

When I sit on my desk chair to start work my back starts to hurt, or I begin to itch in all places, or I would just feel downright sleepy. All the excuses it seems. To be anywhere but here.

Today, I found out someone from my high school class had passed away last year. Thought it was Covid or something, but he turned out to have struggled with his mental health


Posted by Ken at 23:43
29 Mar 2021

See: site name

Listening to absolutely nothing.

Why do I have such a strong resistance towards work? And then there’s also how I can’t see a clear-cut pattern across the kind I turn obstinately lethargic and indignant towards. I know I can’t have myself too deep into ruminating about ideology. But I feel apathetic and act out of that apathy just the same. Is it part that I have an awareness that I know how to get myself out of sticky situations (having lived them all my life) that I push myself to live on the edge of everything? Part I know I can get away with things because my parents are far from turning me away? It’s not that I can’t imagine myself to be a more functional version of myself, and I have even been that person in reality through some pockets of time in the past. My understanding of myself leads me to believe it’s always a disappointment, a disillusionment, that consciously or unconsciously triggers me to abandon genuine concern for my obligations, but simultaneously putting me in a state of anxiety and self-loathing, because I am not a guiltless person. I know my sentiment could be more lenient, but I really hate that I am this way. I hate that I don’t have it in me to tough it out through suffering in the way most people resign themselves to. I don’t think I deserve special treatment. In fact, looking back, I ironically have overwhelmingly more memories of suffering I had to endure than times I actually had the luxury of taking the easy way out.

I am unashamed to say I can be an excessive, indulgent, and materialistic person. This pandemic has only made this worse in the absence of more invaluable coping mechanisms and a generally more purposeful life. My parents and friends have expressed their concern about my spending and why I don’t save my money. Frankly, my feeling is that, however irrational and easily argued against, I simply don’t see the point in doing so. Fundamentally, I feel so jaded about my life, especially in this climate and in this country, that I’d rather throw myself away with some fleeting pleasures down a path of ruin that is my choice, than to preempt any circumstance beyond my control, which is what I assume most people save up for. That or to set a solid foundation, but I can’t imagine myself living in a country that is running itself to the ground, so if ever I live on to see brighter days, I am desperate and determined to see my life through elsewhere. Of course, I’m aware that to even be in this position to think about these things is a luxury permitted to me by my privilege, but what then? I don’t feel grateful to be participating in a system that places me a few notches higher than people who suffer more than I do. If I had to fight tooth and nail for my life, I know I would & could because I have that in me. So it’s not like I'm pompously unaware of what I have going for me, in practical terms. I don't think it's inconceivable (albeit perhaps it is uncommon) that someone like me would feel apathetic and lethargic towards life and work, all despite the things I have that others don't. I would not say this in a public platform because obviously I’m not tone deaf like that, but I absolutely don’t feel grateful being able to work from home, and to have a livelihood that is (arguably) less taxing than blue-collar jobs. We’re all suffering from the same evil, just at different degrees, and I guess I’m personally at a place where I have the space and luxury to say that I don’t want to participate in it at all. Most people from all walks of life want to win, because of what I assume to be a result of this system's indoctrination. I just want out.

I wish I had enough balls to kill myself. Truly. But I don’t. And having lived through worse days, that kind of tells me that I never will. But what persists is a desire to disappear; a cessation of existence. I don’t see any point in life than to live out experiences that could ultimately bring me joyful meaning (only through laughable imagination at this point) or to help further what I know to be good for those I can reach in my life (ambitious at best, insignificant at worst). But even these feel like a stretch. I feel like I continue to live primarily because I feel too scared of the pain of death, and unwilling to pass the burden of grief to those who happen to care about me. Especially to my parents who despite their grave shortcomings, do deserve acknowledgement and respect for the work they did in raising me. I do feel that throwing my life away would be the biggest fuck you to all their hard work, but I digress.

So what the fuck was the point of writing all of this? If my past statements in passing weren’t enough, I wanted to express my supreme tiredness of life, this country, and humanity at large. I am already looking for another meaningless job I can already foresee loathing. I simply do not want to exist. If there was a painless, guiltless, inconsequential way out of life for me, I would give every bit of willpower and passion that lays dormant in me towards getting to the front of the line to that opportunity.

Posted by Ken at 21:11
18 Mar 2021

Again again again

Listening to Shed ‒ Warped Mind (Original Mix)

It's all just whatever

Posted by Ken at 06:34
22 Feb 2021

I'm partly to blame

Listening to ANOHNI ‒ Drone Bomb Me

People make me lonely, not my solitude

People take me out of myself. And in my folly often I scramble to reel myself back in. Then I am emptied, bitter, self-less, ugly

Just like my mother taught me. From day one I've not known love. My friends would claim to, and I claim to believe them. But maybe only because I owe them the sincerity they offer to me. But I can't possibly know when I've not a loving feeling to recall

I'm very angry and sad that I lend myself so easily. That even so people have no idea who I am

But it's not that I'm such a myth to uncover. They just don't care to bother. Then me, I treat people how I would wish to be treated. I always care to bother. Then I feel robbed.

Apparently it's not okay to want to die so maybe I'll just try to be alone, because people kill me just the same.

Posted by Ken at 03:34
17 Feb 2021

A haircut, then Jane

Listening to Róisín Murphy - Narcissus/Royal T (Live @ Home)

I didn't expect to be back here so soon, but a turn of events brought me into a good mood, so I thought it was a good time to leave this here while I'm at it.

I had more days feeling really agitated by how my hair looked and felt on my head than days where I felt like I looked good with it. Couple that with a gnawing urge to feel something in the face of a morose everyday life, and you have a boy spending indulgently on a simple hair trim.

I looooooooved it. What a great way to debut my CÉLINE boots

I was REALLY satisfied with it though. And I enjoyed the bit of small talk I had with the stylist, Dimitry. He said his parents were something like Russian diplomats and that he'd grown up constantly moving across cities in the world. He enjoys Filipinos and their humor and honesty. I think he just enjoys BGC. But I digress. He knew what he was doing & gave a good haircut ♡

Dimitry and his space. I will be coming back

Best believe I strutted out of that place feeling the fuck out of myself in my overpriced shoes et trés chic ensemble ♡

The masks are all right but good Lord rid us of these f*ce shields

For the rest of the day I caught up with my high school friend, Jane. We hadn't seen each other since idk, 2017? I've always liked her around

Some yoghurt cake she'd insisted on buying me at this new dessert bar her boyfriend oversees in Glorietta. It was okay

Of course, I wanted to eat in Poblacion. I hate to say it but I really enjoy that neighborhood. So Jane wanted us to try this new restaurant there, which was funnily a two-minute walk away from where I used to work. Then, some pictures en route. I especially liked how I looked that day, head to toe ;)

Overshirt from Uniqlo U; t-shirt from Q DESIGN AND PLAY (Bangkok); pants from Gap (thrifted); boots from CÉLINE; watch from Seiko; tote bag from IDEA

I love Jane! We weren't the closest in high school, but we have always found it easy to share a great laugh. She starred in my FYP video in college, shot her and another schoolmate once, and would definitely love to photograph her so much more. This day was particularly special because we had finally gotten around to drinking together after having put it off for so long

The restaurant almost couldn't squeeze us in because they normally only take in reservations, but one can really count on this bitch to charm her way through anything! Hah

They sat us by the front door but it was still a nice spot. She said I looked like a top in that photo (a rare one of me in a grin!); I don't really see it, but maybe I kind of do lol

Food was great. I just wish we'd had more than one bottle, but obviously, one doesn't have the luxury of time to indulge themselves outside these days. I'd say we caught up substantially but with an old friend it's never quite enough. She insisted that I talk some about my life these past few years & despite being all right now, I did almost cry. I then gave her a reading with a small tarot spread which made her cry. We hugged for a quite a bit after that. I hadn't hugged anyone in a while. It was all very nice

Then I came home and felt lonely all over again despite all that. I told another friend a few days ago that with these friends whom I love, in spite of every good thing that I sincerely feel around them, I more often than not feel like I'm squatting at their home when I spend time with them. And the thing with that is, I would have to leave or be forced to leave eventually, because, however welcome, I'm only ever a guest at theirs & I don't really have a home to call my own. I hope my friends don't feel like I'm being ungrateful when I say that though. I treasure them very much

Posted by Ken at 03:15
16 Feb 2021

Barely feeling

Listening to Julia Kent ‒ Transportation

I feel miserable, and empty. These days I don't have it in me to convince myself that I do have something to live for. In an effort to come up with something to abate this sadness, in true Ken fashion, I thought of turning to vanity

But it was going on 5 AM and I was too tired to get up, much less begin dressing up. I will save it for next time. Now, I have here after all

So then, the compromise was as above

I was surprised; I had really thought I would think of myself as ugly then. I had every reason to.

Though it appears that I wear my misery well.

& I feel just enough to have hope that it doesn't live on to wear me.

Posted by Ken at 01:08