Sunday, August 05, 2007

When Love Sucks

I always get asked, "Don't you miss the Philippines?" And the honest answer is No. After the initial period of adjustment, I'm finding that what my sister Bel once said is true: "Pareho-pareho lang yan kahit saan ka magpunta." I'm living exactly the kind of life I had wanted for myself in Manila after quitting my old job, except that here I'm not eating as much rice. My family? They're a YM Buzz or a phone call away. Pinoy food? I can cook it up whenever I want to.

Pressed about it, I would have to admit that there is one thing I occasionally look for, something I can't recreate over here. "Gutom" is what I call it. Hunger. It's this fierce energy you find amongst artists' circles back home. In a country where most everybody has to fight just to survive, every time you create something, you're proclaiming, Hey, I'm still here, taking up space, breathing in as much oxygen as I can, hanging on even if it's just by the soggy threads of Lucky Me Instant Noodles. I suppose you can't have that attitude if you know that even if you don't sell a painting, at the end of the month, you still get your RMI*.

So as a way of again tasting that energy, and because we really should be paying more attention to talent, every now and then in this blog I'll be telling you about the works of Filipino artists.

Today it's Wasted, a graphic novel by Gerry Alanguilan that delighted me when I first read it in the 1990s. It's angry, violent, insane, bloody, and some parts are hilariously funny. It's all about love. Go see for yourself. Wasted is being serialized online.

And I'm going to do the same as Budjette (from whose blog I also stole the image above) and say that if you haven't ever read Wasted before, then you should click here for your introduction. Afterwards, for your daily dose, it's here you want to go.

By the way, speaking of Filipino komiks, I was a big fan when I was a kid and one of my favorites was Mantisa, about this gorgeous woman who would seduce a man to her bed and then turn into a giant praying mantis to eat the hapless stud. I have absolutely no memory who the artist was. Do you?

* financial aid from the government given to unemployed French citizens


armovil said...

Hi Apol, Im Arlan regularly checking out your blog entries.Keep it up!

apol said...

Hey, Arlan! Thanks for the encouragement. Say hi more often :)

Budjette said...


oh man... that's just begging for a re-make!!!

Maybe starring Gretchen? or Kris?

apol said...

BUDJ, tough choice, but I think I'll be going for Kris. The voice alone is a killer.