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The Origin

This is the post excerpt.

I’m the upper bunk kid.

The one always on top.

When i was a kid. It seems like an honor, a privilege, who doesn’t like being on top? So I fought with my sister to win the space on top when our parents first bought a double deck in elementary (We have a younger brother but he always gets the solo, coz he’s a guy and all).

Eventually, I learned that being on top is such a hassle. It’s so tiring to climb down every morning when you wake up. It’s so annoying when you forgot something when you’re already down and the thing you forgot is way across the far edge of the upper bunk (although it drives your creativity when you’re lazy, haha).

I stayed on top until our parents, my mother specifically, decided to pull another of her “new-year-new-arrangement” motto which is like her subtle version of “room-is-dirty-we-need-to clean-up. But I have never silently thanked her that time because now the double-deck was sawed into two single beds so nobody will be on top, nobody is considered the bottom.

Fast forward, college time, starting 2nd yr specifically, I’ve once again found myself spending three years of college life as the upper bunk kid, and it seems not enough. Even right now when I am already working, as I write the origin of why I titled my page “The Upper Bunk Kid,” I’m stomach-faced, legs dangling, sprawled at my current upper bunk.

It may not be a big deal but realizing this inspired me to start this blog.

And just to let it have a deeper meaning (chos!), maybe I’ve always spend my time on top, and by on top, it does not necessarily mean that I am good at everything, coz i’m so far from that. On top, in this context, is having the “illusion” that everybody’s focus is me, where my every move, every decision I make will be judged and compared to others. I perfectly have it in my head that it’s no use comparing my Chapter 1 to other’s Chapter 20, but I still couldn’t help it. Although, I am trying hard to do so.

 

So yeah, this is me, the upper bunk kid and here is where I’ll share my story.

 

Speakeasy, Speak Love by McKelle George

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The title pulled me in, the cover made me interested in it even more.

My first thought was that it will be a novel touching on poems, you know because of the word speak, haha. I thought wrong though. I was not familiar with the word “speakeasy” and never bothered to read the summary of the book before actually reading it, so I was actually looking for something that is in relation to poetry til maybe around half of the book when I decided to research what speakeasy mean. haha.

According to Merriam-Webster, speakeasy (n) is a place where alcoholic drinks were sold illegally in the U.S. during the 1920s.

Not knowing what speakeasy means plus not reading the summary and no prologue nor date indicated made me confused altogether. I thought I was reading a contemporary novel all along when, in fact, it was set in the 1920s. hahaha. This is probably the main reason why I did not enjoy reading the book much. I was confused on the setting of what I was reading half the time.

The way it was written, you’ll never know it’s set in the 1920s unless you are familiar with the word speakeasy, you have read the summary before reading, and except for that one time in the book that a date in the early 1900s was given.

I did like the characters though, when I understood the setting, I appreciated the characters and how they are presented more. It kinda reminds me of Pride and Prejudice, maybe in the sense that the characters are so stubborn in admitting that they have fallen in love. Beatrice and Benedick, Hero and Prince. What I like about the book is the diversity of characters. Benedick’s your dreamer rich white guy. Beatrice is your opinionated, smart, fallen, white girl. Hero is your pampered, curvy, poor, white girl. Prince is your poor Italian guy working hard to survive. Maggie is a black girl whose voice is the sweetest. John is an Italian mafia with a soft heart. And Claude, well Claude is your typical rich guy who likes trying something new but still would choose richness over anything else. The characters are not typical characters of the 1920s.

I actually did not understand the main focus of the story. Sure, it has something to do with speakeasy of the 1920s or maybe how the Italian mafia works in the US during that period. I did enjoy the bickering of Beatrice and Benedick and because of that I read the novel til the end.

Overall, I didn’t like nor hate the book. It’s just a book good to read if your passing time. It’s not the greatest but it’s an okay book, an interesting one, I guess, since it touched on the concepts of the 1920s that are not much depicted in books. One thing it thought me though, I still have a lot to learn in history.

While You Were Sleeping Korean Drama Review

 

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It’s been a long, long while since I have watched a korean drama, or series for that matter. However, I’ve been really intrigued by When You Were sleeping. I have a love-hate relationship with Suzy, especially with her acting, but when I watched the trailer, I was sold.

I just finished watching the drama and over-all i loved it. It started with a bang. When I watched the first episode I was really thrilled and excited. It’s jam packed and fast-paced. Eventually though, it cooled down and went to the normal pace of korean dramas, but still, the interest is there.

While You Were Sleeping is about Hong Joo (Suzy) and her prophecy dreams. She dreams about the future and had a hard time accepting it until she met Jae Chan (Lee Jong Suk), who shortly after meeting her, started having prophecy dreams as well. Completing the trio is Woo Tak, a police officer, who got entangled in the story after being saved by Jae Chan from a car crash. Jae Chan helped Hong Joo, albeit unknowingly, accept her gift and acknowledged the fact that she can try to change her bad dreams but must be prepared to face the changes and repercussions on the flow of time.

While You were Sleeping also showed an improved Suzy for me. Her previous acting was just okay for me, not good, not bad either, although, there are some scenes of hers that I really could not connect and can very much feel that it’s just acting. Probably, her character matches her personality, but I really like what she showed here. Plus the ever brilliance of Lee Jong Suk’s acting, the combi was perfect.

But most of all, what I like with the drama is that the writer knows the story from inside out and presented it to the audience in a manner that the big picture was detailed into small frames, providing room for excitement each episode and a big hug at the end.

While You Were Sleeping is one of the chill, nice dramas. It may not be the best but it definitely won’t disappoint. Plus there’s the second male lead discovery. It’s okay that Woo Tak (Jung Hae In) didn’t end up with Hong Joo (Suzy) because he is mine. hahahha.

To The Boy Across the Globe

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You’re 18, I’m 25
God, if I’m committing a crime, help me, stop me, save me
I don’t know much about love
As i got zero, nada, no experience romantically speaking
But maybe someone could save me, help me, I’m falling.

I don’t know much about love
Only about heartbreaks, and pain, and suffering
And maybe that’s why I’ve avoided it for as much as I can
Never thought one day I’ll be entangled in one

I know the rules about love, that much is pretty etched in my heart
You know, I didn’t spend all my days reading mangas, novels, watching dramas for nothing;
I know we’re not meant to be; we’re not even supposed to be
So i don’t know what I’m doing, why am i falling… for nothing?

It started out with a chat
A “Hey there….What you doing?”
You asked if I had a snap, and I told you I have
“I told you I have” means I don’t have one right now but am willing to download one if that’s the only we could continue to talk

I am app-phobic but you made me search lessons on Snapchat101
We’ve exchanged snaps, and i got now 282
But still I don’t know your name and I’m afraid to ask
I’m afraid to ask your name because then it will get personal
Knowing your name will feel like there will be a chance, a hope, and i don’t wanna go there;
I don’t wanna prepare my heart from falling to the abyss when it is already on the edge of a cliff

A few hours became days and days became weeks
And now we’re red hearts for each other, keeping the fire burining;
We’re time zones apart but we still match as you go about your usual day and I work during the night

I don’t even know how or why it started;
We’re practically strangers and strangers we still are
But somehow you’ve brightened my dull days and made me look forward
to every vibration of my phone for it means you’re now free to talk
I’m feeling foolish feeling the feelings I mock all those years;
But maybe that’s just the way love is, intruding and all-consuming

So to the boy across the globe, and yes you’re just a boy,
I guess I am now on the process of loving you, even when I don’t want to.

My O.K. Experience

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Let’s start this blog by saying that I consider myself as an introvert ever since forever. I don’t necessarily have a problem with it but sometimes I just wish I was outgoing and friendly coz most often than not, I think I’m missing out on the fun (which is not necessarily true). This is my thinking especially regarding dating and relationships. I’m 25, never had a boyfriend, never been kissed. Again, it’s not a major problem for me since I believe that the right person will come when God says it’s the right time, but you know you can’t help wishing you’re with somebody at times. Haha.

This is where my online persona comes in. I take on a slightly different persona online. Maybe due to the fact that the other person can’t see me but I am more forward and friendly whenever I’m connected to the internet. I haven’t done much flirting online though until recently. A friend introduced me to Omegle. I decided to try it. I have nothing to lose and it’s easy to disconnect. This was two and a half weeks ago.

I didn’t really put much hope that I’ll be able to find a decent guy to go into a relationship  with when I tried Omegle. I know that no such thing can come out when you can lie your way all through out your interaction since you’re just basically strangers. What I did wanted was some interesting conversations and maybe possible kinda lasting conversations. However, it was really hard to find what I’m looking for.

Omegle, a platform where two strangers can talk to each other, and wherein you can just disconnect when you don’t feel talking anymore, is a horny person attractor. Whenever I was lucky enough that the stranger did not disconnect onset of the convo, I will later find them to be just horny and looking for a hook up. Then, it would be now me that will disconnect. I did was able to have interesting and fun conversations a couple of times – one with a nurse who’s gay, one with a gay who’s in love with his classmate, one with a weird guy with interesting theories about why the world is the way it is now, and one is with a grandfather who has interesting stories about the time when he was still a firefighter.

Usually, the stranger will also ask if you have Kik. I was not familiar with the app but downloaded it nonetheless. Kik is a messaging app where you cannot be traced (hopefully). It’s also easy to block someone. Messages are also not saved and older messages are deleted from the conversation.

I had some fun interactions, some I went along with their kiks, played with the game, enjoyed while it lasted. I sent some pictures but when it’s getting too personal and I can’t keep up, I immediately block the other person. Two and a half weeks later since I started, I have been conversing with three guys (but soon I think only one will be left). I enjoy especially talking to this one guy, we haven’t exchanged pictures at all and it was only after a week and a half of talking did we know each other’s names but I think our conversation will soon halt, since I’m not that good in keeping up with conversation.

Over all though, my Omegle-Kik (O.K.) experience is a good one. You just need to know your limits and don’t be persuaded easily by the strangers. My experience boosted my confidence and happiness these days. Hopefully, it continues.

Bad Genius (Thailand movie) Review

I NEVER THOUGHT A STORY ABOUT CHEATING ON AN EXAM WILL MAKE ME FEEL SO MUCH!!!

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Bad Genius, known in Thai as Chalard Games Goeng (ฉลาดเกมส์โกง), is 2017 Thailand heist movie that broke records left and right. (Well deserved, if i may add!). The film was released in Thailand back in May but only released in the Philippines this October.

*******************************WARNING: SPOILERS*******************************

Bad Genius is about mass cheating in STIC (SAT) scores of hopeful high school students. The story centers on Lynn, the straight-A scholarship student, Bank, another smart scholarship student, Pat, rich and scheming douche guy, and Grace, the wanna-be-actress-but-too-dumb-for-it student. Lynn and Bank flew to Australia to take the SAT exam first (earlier timezone than Thailand). They then sent the answers to Pat and Grace in Thailand who printed the answers via the Grace’s family’s printing press as an encoded bar code in the pencils that the students who paid for the answer sheet will use.

The movie is ingenious. Never thought that I would feel so much from it. I’ve heard positive reviews but I didn’t know that I would completely be blown away by it. The story is simple but there’s a lot of messages regarding our society that can be fleshed out.

Small things must not be overlooked. The massive cheating wasn’t just planned overnight. It started out as a mere gesture of sincerity. Lynn met Grace on her first day in school and quickly became friends due to Grace’s outgoing and fun personality. Grace opened up about her desire to be in the school play but she needs to have at least 3.75 in Math to participate. And the thing is she’s far from it since she’s dumb. A gesture of “friendship” during the exam, Lynn sincerely wants to support Grace and her passion for acting, so when Grace told Lynn that she doesn’t know the answer to the exam questions, even if they have reviewed the EXACT set of question, Lynn decided to provide the answers to Grace via eraser.

Once you start doing something, even if it’s just a small step, it will be hard to stop. So you must not just dismiss thinking twice before doing it.  Small things can get pretty big overtime. For example, you start stealing small things — hair clips, plastic bags, coins — nothing alarming at the start. But it’ll build in you a habit and decreasing satisfaction. Thus you must go the next level — stealing bills, big changes, lying through all of it when asked. When this does not even satisfy you, you’ll then go for the big things, pick pocketing, stealing big things, large sum, etc. In other cases, we always have “this time only” excuse. We’ll just do this at this time. But then that’s what we have been saying for the millionth time even before we realize we are doing it. This is building in us the habit of justifying  the not advisable thing we are doing. It started out small but snowballed, factoring in various elements, into a massive scale of cheating when money became involved which brings us to the second point. Everything boils to money.

“The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows”

I Timothy 6:10

Money is indeed the root cause of all evil, but this is backed by inequality and unfair circumstances that we are born with. When the rich and pompous Pat offered the poor scholarship Lynn to cheat for him and offered to pay 3000 Baht per subject, Lynn declined at first but then decided to accept it when Pat mentioned that there’s a “Tea Ceremony” money which the students must pay for supposedly administration costs of the expensive school they are in. One thing led to another and we have our story (see Point #1). On this second point though, we can see that even the “good” and “moral” people can forget their beliefs and morals when faced with a large sum of money. A great example is Bank. Bank was the straight-laced guy who couldn’t tolerate cheating. Going so far as to reporting to the headmistress that Tong was cheating off Lynn during their exam. But in the end, wanting to end the dirt poor life he is living, and providing her mother a better life, he dropped his morals and joined the heist. WILL YOU CHOOSE MORALS OR MONEY?

Third point that we can see is the inequality of society and how it plays a big role in the decisions we are making. We can see inequality and unfairness of life (social status quo)  that drives “good” people to grab hold on to the money offer even if they know they are bending and even betraying rules of their principle and morals. We see here the typical stereotype — RICH but DUMB and SMART but POOR (although i honestly don’t believe the rich are really dumb since they know how to use their resources *money* to their advantage) — and how the RICH EXPLOITS THE POOR. And in which at the end of the day, the poor will always be the scapegoat. In a sense, in this battle of Rich VS Poor, the rich always wins. No matter what the circumstance is. Inequality can also be seen when Lynn’s father was lobbying Lynn into her acceptance into the school. He only wants what is best for Lynn and decided that the school can provide that because it’s one of the known schools connecting graduates to study abroad programs which can lead to a brighter future. Lynn’s father is wanting only what’s the best, but it became the worst instead. Here, we can see that access to education is not equal to all. Thus, if you’r born into money, you’ll already guaranteed with available resources, no worrying about where to get the next meal and thus you have the chance to focus more on your study. But the poor needs to struggle with everything they have just to have a decent meal and be able to study. The image below shows this point.

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Photo credit: @banksy

Lastly, a strong support system is what we all need to go ahead and face the consequences of our actions. Lynn, in the end, decided to confess everything to her father and report it to media. And in the last scenes of the movie that her father never left her. We can see that we really need a strong support system, family, to get us through our mistakes, our bad decisions because, if not, we might just make more wrong choices.

Bad genius is a bad ass film that everyone must watch. The story reflects our society. It’s a good movie to make you think. It also tugs at your heartstrings. The actors are also good!!! They have portrayed the characters well especially LYNN!!!

If you haven’s watched it yet. WATCH IT NOW! You’ll definitely won’t regret! 🙂

Without Merit by Colleen Hoover

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Hi! I’m back! 🙂

Without Merit is the latest book by Colleen Hoover which was just recently released. I was excited and had been waiting for this book ever since I got to binge read Colleen Hoover’s books a couple of months back since I really liked most of what I have read. However, maybe the excitement and build up was too much as I did not enjoy the book as much as I thought I would.

Don’t get me wrong, the book is still good. I prolly just expected more. Plus it’s short. Without Merit is kinda like a deviation from the usual build up that is seen in Colleen Hoover’s previous books. Everything was laid out in the first few chapters of the story. Each character introduced.

Without Merit is about the crazy, weird Voss family who lives in a refurbished church which they call Dollar Voss. The story centers on Merit Voss who collects trophies she did not earn to relieve stress, and to keep up with all the secret of her family that she is keeping. And when her failed attempt to end it all, to leave everything WITHOUT MERIT, leaving a note with all the secrets, she now have to face the consequences of her action and try to keep the one boy that she loves.

The Voss family is one of the craziest, weirdest family I have read so far in my entire YA reading career. From the head of the house, his ex-wife, current wife, to the eldest child, twins (Honor and Merit), and the youngest, coupled with the current wife’s younger brother, and the unrelated boy who’s love interest of Merit, they all are weird and are full of secrets. The fact that they live in a refurbished church with the image of Jesus still in tact is weird enough. But knowing that the father, ex-wife, wife, and all the kids are living together makes it even weirder.

Without Merit is a short read, jam-packed with crazy characters, each with a lot of baggage to deal with. Like her other novels, Without Merit makes you ponder and think about the greater issue that is incorporated in the novel. The underlying themes this time is depression.

The characters are each given just enough time to know what’s their secret and the reason behind. The father’s reason for buying the church and living with his ex- and current wife. Utah, the oldest brother’s reason why he kissed Merit when they were younger which had been the start of the discord in their relationship. Honor, Merit’s identical twin sister, and why she only kinda goes for guys who are almost at the end of their lives. Luke, the current wife’s younger brother, and why he suddenly turn up into their doorsteps and why he had sex with Utah. Sagan, the love interest of Merit, and why he always drops everything when somebody calls him.

Maybe I expected for Merit’s story to be more fleshed out. Maybe I expected to understand why she was depressed, although she fails to recognize it. I know that being the talk of the town for having a crazy family can be overwhelming and having to bottle up a lot of things, especially heavy secrets, since young, can take a toll on one’s mental health. However, I could not relate to Merit and her struggle with all the secrets she keep. It’s like I want to scream at her “Why not just open up? Why not talk to someone?” But maybe this is where the problem with depression, from an outside perspective, the solution might be so easy but for someone experiencing it, easy things might be a luxury. It’s like I want to know more, understand more, but the book is already ending.

On the other side, the book shows how each one of us is struggling in one way or the other. We can never really judge the actions of another person unless we know the full story behind it. Even the most ridiculous action might have a sensible reason behind. So don’t judge things and don’t hold prejudice before knowing everything. And maybe, just maybe, open communication is just what we need to overcome our baggage. When all the Voss’ secrets were laid out in the open, it started the healing process. Readers will be able to make sense of the actions of the characters and Merit’s relationship with her unconventional family also got better. The reason? They were able to talk.

Still, Without Merit shows Colleen Hoover’s prowess in delivering a story that will tug at your heartstrings. The underlying theme might be heavier than her previous ones but it was told in a manner that’s enough for me to stop and think about but not really pierce deeper unlike the others. Nevertheless, it’s still a book to be recommended.

Breaking the Rules of Revenge by Samantha Bohrman

breaking rules.jpgThis is like Parent’s Trap gone wrong.

This is the book I read after Warcross, I was trying to find a light read after the awesome Warcross. I was okay with cliche at that point. I just want to feel swoony. But this might not be the best book for that.

Breaking the Rules of Revenge is your typical, teen read. Even though I’m okay with cliche, this is such a messy one for me. The plot is a typical one. Twin sisters – Blake – the popular one – and Mallory – the shadow wishing to be her sister. So when the opportunity came along to switch their roles one summer, she didn’t hesitate to do it. Mallory attended the summer camp punishment disguising as Blake. She met Ben, one of the hottest guys in school, who happens to hate Blake to the core. Ben decides to take advantage of the summer camp to get revenge on Blake. But the more he sees Blake (Mallory), the more he wants to stop his revenge. And you know the rest, enemies to lovers, and they live happily ever after. The end.

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This is the first book in a while that I finished for the sake of finishing. I’m not really against cliches but somehow the writing just didn’t appeal to me. There was some swoony moments but those weren’t able to keep me entertained for long.

I find the characterization of Mallory kinda irritating. If I ever meet her, I’ll scream straight to her face, “Girl, make up your mind!” She’s insecure that she’s not getting the attention of people, especially of boys, but she’s not really doing anything about it except pinning to be like her sister. There is a part in the book as well wherein Mallory was called as Mallory by her camp friends when they should not even know that Mallory exists!

Stereotype, ugh, I uber hate it. One thing I hate in most cliche books is the stereotyping going on. You need to be a girly girl, a cheerleader, to be noticed by boys. If you’re stuck in a band or is a nerd, you’ll never be noticed unless fate pull some strings. Stereotype thinking is clearly seen in this book.

There are some cute moments in the book between Mallory and Ben. However, in my mind, those were overshadowed by thinking, like how is she comfortable falling in love with Ben knowing she’s supposed to be Blake (the worry came later than I expected).

We crave for love. We crave for attention. But in the end, we won’t be happy unless we do something about it ourselves. We cannot always just be jealous of somebody else. Somebody will always, always, be better than us. But it is when you accept yourself, flaws and all, that you’ll start to shine. It’s definitely not easy but this is life.

Overall, this book has potential but has room for improvement. I suggest reading this if you really have nothing to read at all.