4 Doses of Reality

In a matter of three days, I got more than one dose of reality — reassuring, irritating, humorous, and depressing.

Reassuring:

I, together with the missus, decided to pick up our son from his college today.  While this Friday had been declared a holiday by the president, our son chose not to come home Thursday night.  Admittedly,  I had that feeling, at the start of the week, that he’d come up with a sudden excuse not to go home as planned.  He claimed that his teachers required their class to see a musical event at the last moment.

As we drove to his college, I had this feeling that he’d be in one of the buses in the highway alongside our vehicle.  I had this feeling that he would underestimate us and abuse his convenient distance from home — binge drink at some bar in the city and come home pretending he had a tough day in school.

The day started as not looking good for him since our calls to his phone went unanswered after several attempts.  We found out later on that he was still asleep…at 1:00 in the afternoon.  Personally, I’d rather have that scene than seeing him scurrying up the dorm, trying to outrun us to a not-so-pleasant alternate version of the truth.

Irritating:

My friend from a previous employer informed me that a big chunk of my last pay would be paid out exactly three months after I left them.  I find it rather unfair since I’ve long been cleared of any accountabilities from them — three months, in fact.  I find it rather irritating that it is my money that the company is holding.  I guess the business of adhesives is too sticky for its own good.  Maybe they’ll fold up because of the HUGE amount of money I am getting from them.  Silly management leads to silly policies.  Sheesh!

Although the company was there during my time of need, I believe I played the role they required of me quite effectively.  I’ve paid what is due to them; it’s time that they do the same.

Humorous and slightly irritating:

While I had jokingly claimed that Mentos is the new one-peso currency of this country, the same entity that brought me to make that silly conclusion became the first entity to disprove it.

The Ministop branch near my office usually asks for loose change from its customers for them to give the exact change.  If you don’t give them one, two, or three pesos, then they’ll give you Mentos in exchange.  They claim that the Mentos candy is valued at one peso.  I don’t know if their practice is legal or not.  At least they should accept Mentos as payment.  In fact, I got a couple of Mentos candies as change again last Tuesday.

After buying a pack of cigarettes, I handed a 50-peso bill to the clerk.  I assumed that there were not enough coins in the register since he asked me for two pesos.  He said “Sir, meron po kayong dalawang piso (Sir, do you have two pesos?)?”  Since I didn’t have any coins on me at that time, I politely said “No, but I still have the two Mentos candies you gave me the other day.  Would that be okay?”  The clerk probably felt embarrassed by my straight question.  He decided to just give me money instead of Mentos.

Depressing:

After deciding to go on hermit mode in 2008, I ended up doing part-time and work-at-home jobs.  While working at home allowed me a certain freedom, which was invigorating, it also gave me a feeling of loneliness since my entire family was always out of the house in those times.  I was left alone to do my work in front of the computer.  It was a good thing that I had a goldfish to keep me company.

We had one goldfish in a tiny tank.  My youngest son, imaginative as he is, decided to name this lone goldfish as Joe.  Joe kept me company in long days.  During those days, I admit that I talked to Joe a lot.  I was in charge of feeding him and I loved how he reacted to his chow time.  I guess giving a pet a name increases the owner’s attachment to  them.

I found it depressing to see my fish lacking in energy and looking sick.  I know that I cannot even do anything to help Joe.

All living things will eventually expire, including my favorite goldfish.

I hope Joe recovers from this one.

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