oh captain my captain, by walt whitman – i first learned the poem in 2nd grade english class, 43 years or so ago. my english teacher, miss patao, asked me to join the school declamation contest after she heard me recite a few verses. i won gold.
i am now 50 years old and to this day, i can recite every line.
last night’s #SNL opening was epic in so many levels. first, it was a tribute to #LeonardCohen who passed away this week and what a way to calm a fearful nation with a song that’s ambiguous but hopeful. finally, i have to say, #KateMcKinnon has the fucking chops.
I did my best, it wasn’t much
I couldn’t feel, so I tried to touch
I’ve told the truth, I didn’t come to fool you
And even though it all went wrong
I’ll stand before the Lord of Song
With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah
sometimes i take it personally when people look over me because i’m the only brown asian guy in the room. i get mad when they talk to my subordinates when i am the person in charge… and then i doubt myself immediately because surely, there isn’t any racism anymore in the 21st century.
so the orange faced, pussy grabber won and gave the biggest FUCK YOU to the entire establishment and the whole world.
i wish him and the country well. i hope he brings in the smartest people he can find. i hope he governs decently. i hope the lives of the people in the rust belt who voted for him gets better. i hope he moves to the middle. i hope all the racism was just campaign rhetoric.
on the positive side, for the next 4 years, rock and roll and comedy is going to be subversive again. plus, recreational pot is going to be legal in california 🙂
i’m going to wear my brown asian helmet and give out a few observations:
seems like folks in middle america wanted to reassert themselves after eight years of obama. what does it mean for us minorities? hopefully nothing dangerous or life threatening. i know after this cycle is over, we’ll come out stronger and in bigger numbers.
there’s a large group of people in america who are hurting who have spoken out quite powerfully. these are the people who see life moving on without them as technology and automation make them redundant. they feel alienated in their own country as they see large groups of hungrier immigrants who don’t look like them at all, speak with strange accents who are willing to work more for less pay.
this is the first time i am voting as an american and i am so excited. i am 50 years old, an immigrant, just given US citizenship over a year ago. i come from a country that’s had its share of political bad luck. the philippines has shot its collective foot so many times by electing the worst leaders so i know what could happen when people are careless, subscribe to personality cults or don’t give a shit.
most americans don’t know how lucky they are to be born in the united states – a country that is generous, kind and values freedom and individuality even as it strives to be a perfect union. a country that is open to people who can be successful if they work hard. i chose to be an american and i don’t take this day for granted.
sometimes it’s hard to have a brown asian face in this town – it’s even worse if you have an accent. but who the madapaking flying fuck cares 🙂 it’s always nice to be underestimated because of how you look. makes the victory more satisfying. that i know from experience.
i’ve always been pragmatic and practical in my life choices. with my politics, i’ve even been more pragmatic. i think i know where it comes from. in the philippines, where i was born, a lot of people still haven’t given up on the idea of complete devotion to their feudal lords. we follow our leaders no matter what and believe in what they say even if we know they lie. i didn’t buy in. i am a rebel at heart and have never subscribed to blind loyalty
in the presidential election, i will be extra pragmatic. i know what happens to a country when its people don’t think things through.
i feel lucky to have been given the opportunity to be an american. i wasn’t born into it: i chose to be one. it’s different, i guess, when you go out of your way to be something. there is intent and there is purpose.
this is probably the main reason why i take the election seriously.
the first time i voted in an election was in 1986. cory aquino, ninoy’s widow, was running against ferdinand marcos. millions of people were on the streets during the cory rallies, all dressed in yellow, all flasing the “L” hand sign. L for Laban. fight. and fight we did. it eventually took a four day revolution to kick marcos out of the country. but that’s another story for another day. in the meantime, here i am… a veteran of countless elections. countless coups. dying a million times of heartache for a country i used to be a citizen of and still love. now, a citizen of a country that seems in a fight with itself. confused and in a lot of pain. i am voting for the first time, at age 50. i am still thrilled.
i keep hearing clinton and trump campaigning to minorities a lot lately. but i don’t hear them or their surrogates mentioning asian-americans. it’s always muslims, latinos, african americans and mexicans. why is that?
is it because our demographic doesn’t matter? that we’ve integrated so successfully that we’re almost invisible? that we’re so stoic and not as vocal as the other minorities that politicians don’t give a shit?
i became a US citizen on the 11th of august, 2015. that december, i turned 50 years old. this coming november, I will be voting in a US election, for the first time, at 50 years old. it thrills me no end.
it’ll be exciting. the presidential elections is historic in so many ways and here i am, an immigrant, an asian-american, born in the philippines, a radical rabble-rouser, subversive, troublemaker, loud, incendiary, provocateur, rebel. i can’t wait to vote.
We used to play Side B of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon at the parties in Novaliches back in the day because you could slow dance with the girl of your dreams for over 15 minutes. Tigas titi time indeed.