I had extremely good reasons to beg my parents to buy me a new phone. When I was in Ortigas, my seven-year-old Nokia 3310 had problems with receiving calls and sending messages. I offered to pay them back when I can, as long as I have a phone suitable for my needs.
Because I’m an idiot when it comes to mobile technology, I laid out my specs: my phone must store music, it must have one helluva powerful battery, and it must not have a built-in camera. My sister, the resident expert in mobile phones, said that such a phone doesn’t exist: whether I like it or not, I have to have a camera in my phone.
So my mom called me up awhile ago to say that until such time that I can pay them back, I am now the proud new owner of a camera phone. Which basically means that like many camera phone owners, I will be taking pictures of myself in every conceivable park and comfort room in the country, and post the images on my Friendster account.
We all engage in rather strange, inane hobbies. Girls don’t understand why boys spend hours playing online RPGs, boys don’t understand why girls spend so much time at Marcella buying barettes. Men have sticky handkerchiefs, and women have those handy neck massagers at the back of their underwear drawers. But gender aside, the oddest hobby of them all has to be smoking.
It takes me two pesos and seven minutes to smoke a cigarette, which robs me blind of two pesos and seven minutes off my life. Like many smokers, I have lost touch with my seven-minute hobby: I don’t know, and I don’t care for, why I smoke. All I know is that a cigarette is a good way to kill seven minutes.
As a hobby, smoking is extremely strange and completely inane. Drug addicts can justify snorting cocaine: family problems, personal setbacks, depressive episodes. Nymphomaniacs can blame their perverted sexual behaviors because they have hyperactive strata in their id complexes. Smokers don’t… no wait, smokers can’t.
Some smokers give all sorts of reasons for smoking, and to be honest, I don’t buy into them. Flavor-wise, cigarettes are extremely unappealing: there is no “flavor” to speak of when it comes to sucking a burning rope. We smokers have diminished oxygen capacities, which means that we easily get tired. The myriad health problems associated with smoking makes tobacco a biological weapon in itself. More people have died from cigarette smoking than from World War II.
But for every reason that there is to stop smoking, there is no good reason to continue smoking. The only problem is that I can’t quit just yet. I could care less.
Yesterday, my good friend Bernard threw a despedida bash, before he heads off to Singapore. Just this morning, my good friend Nash texted me to say that it’s her last day in the Philippines before she moves to Canada. For the first time in my life, I felt all choked up: in a few short days, even I would have to say goodbye to people close to me.
It doesn’t have to be this way: had I not been confronted with the realities of life, I would have absolutely no reason to say out loud my least-favorite word in the English language. Every goodbye is a life-changing experience that requires you to start over.
And over. For every “goodbye” you make, you have to say “hello” to at least ten other people.