Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Fine, She Said

I must confess: I haven't read a book since new year. Which is rather odd, or downright appalling, especially since I typically finish a paperback in a day on a good day. On bad days, I usually have to burn two to seven days just to drag myself to mince through the pages of a decent novel. As for novels with drab narrative, or plot, whatever, I drop them immediately --- no, I bury them beside my neighbor's bones. I kid. I just leave them in some remote corner where I wouldn't be able to find them again. Like a bad memory I wish I can sacrifice before the great altar of amnesia, because some things in this world are better off completely forgotten, as if they never happened. If it's a sin to not read anything, my mortal coil would be begging for hellfire by now.

I can't remember now the last book I was able to read from cover to cover, and most of them do not even have covers. I'm sure it was neither Salman Rushdie's Midnight's Children nor his The Enchantress of Florence. I was done with both since September last year, if I remember it right, and god knows how forgetful I can be sometimes. Or most of the time, because I have the propensity to choose what to remember. You should try it, but that's an aside, silly you. Going back, it's definitely not Junot Díaz's The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao. It was anything but brief, though to say the least --- and to be fair because nothing in life is --- it was wondrous. Book titles rarely live up to their names these days, and exceptions often come under the radar. What about Murakami? Was it a Murakami that I read the last time? I guess not. I haven't read one since A Wild Sheep Chase, and that was around two years ago, which feels like as far back as a lifetime. The hours and days fly fast. Like a wild sheep chase. Ha!

The reason why I can't recall is that I left my books in the city. All of them. Piles of them. Which also means that I'm not in the city. I'm back in my home province, some five hundred lonely miles away, I suppose. I'm not good at guesstimates so I'll settle with five hundred. As for the lonely bit, well, it has been that way since I don't know when. I'm afraid I won't be able to explain it thoroughly, so I'll spare you the agony of having to extricate the explanation from lines of onscreen text that have nothing, absofuckinglutely nothing to do with the future of the planet. Or with that guy who recently got free facial reconstruction in a condominium unit somewhere in Taguig. Yes, that guy. What the fuck. I can't believe his fate is a matter of such transcendental importance, or of utmost national concern, that people are willing to devote their time debating online the fine I'll stop right here enough about he-who-wanted-to-get-laid-so-bad-what-an-absolute-dickhead.


So, about that book I can't recall. As I'm typing this, I'm trying my best to remember. I might pop a vein from squinting. It's not Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things. Not Charlson Ong's Men of the East and Other Stories. Not any one book in F. Sionil Jose's catalogue. Not Leo Tolstoy. Not Milan Kundera. Not John Updike. Neither Nikki Alfar nor Dean Francis Alfar, or any other Alfar for that matter.

I give up.

"Don't give up yet," I told her. "I'll help you remember."

"Fine," she said.


Anonymous said...

It would be interesting to have a conversation with a guy and he'd be ableto say all that by virtue of remembering the book :)

SPLICE said...

I hope you're right. After all, there aren't too much of them around. They are an endangered species, I suppose. :)

kae said...

Yes. You're right. Vhong is a complete dickhead, if not a slut. I can't believe the raging fanaticism here in the Philippines.

And yes, it's a sin not to read novels at least once a month. I devote myself to reading at least 2 per week. But that's me. Book whore me.:)

And also, I'm a sucker for guys who read fiction. And guys who can really write.:))

kae said...

And hey, I thought, you're supposed to be in the city? You're studying Law, right?

SPLICE said...

Hi Kae! I'm done with both, the city and the law, for now :)

kae said...

Oh. Good for you.. Was hoping to get a glimpse of an amazing writer here in the city. Lol