Tuesday, August 25, 2009

the downsides of being a cassette tape collector

i was raised in a home that listened to a lot of music. i wouldn't say that my parents were that passionate about it. i rarely heard them sing growing up. but there was a lot of music around, in the form of vinyl and cassette. there was the engelbert humperdinck collections, the best of matt monroe, tom jones, and of course, the beatles. before david cook, my father was already mastering his own version of hello (is it me you're looking for?) and i would also hear perpetually the song release me. as i grew older, hearing the song over and over, i said to myself, why can't you just fucking leave?

i had my first album when i was either 13 or 14. janet jackson's rhythm nation 1814. all those dance steps drove me nuts.

right now, i have about over a hundred tapes or more and about 50 or so cds. i can't really keep count since some of them are with other people on loan. tapes were cheaper back then compared to cds. i'd like to think that the collection i have at home is diverse: from new wave (a-Ha, U2, Depeche Mode, Tears for Fears, The Sundays), to grunge (Pearl Jam, Nirvana), local indie (Ciudad, Sugarfree, Sugar Hiccup), angry girl music (Alanis, Jewel, Fiona, Sarah, No Doubt, The Cranberries, Garbage, Paula Cole), OSTs (Roswell, Felicity, Great Expectations, Pretty in Pink, I Am Sam), one-hit wonders (Swirl 360, can't remember the other ones since, well, they only had one song that i liked and it was on sale), classics (Fleetwood Mac, Lani Hall, Chicago, M lost my Best of Air Supply, of course, deliberately) to the more sappy ones (Regine Velasquez - and i have finally come out!). i have lots of tapes which i can't seem to find in cd format now, like Sandwich's first album, Grip Stand Throw, Wolfgang's debut album and FrancisM's Mga Kababayan, which they should be redistributing since the man died. i'm not saying they should capitalize on his death, i just wish it would be out there for the new generation to listen to. no collection will be complete without the Eraserheads, Rivermaya, Parokya ni Edgar, The Dawn. i even have Madonna.

of course, when the cds got cheaper and almost the same price as tapes, i went out and got the ones i really liked. the foreign acts are still more expensive than the local acts and i've always been a big follower of local independent music. it's just too sad not too many people distribute the ones i am fond of.

fortunately, music has been made accessible to all and there are people out there who venture into producing their own music without the capitalists. the internet has also become a great source of music. local productions allow you to watch the band that you like and introduce you to one or two bands that you haven't heard of. technology has allowed us to listen to music when we want it, where we want it.

my dilemma? i can't transport my music where i want to be, especially the ones that are not on the market anymore. even if i can, it's too bulky, too embarrassing. if only i can find a way to convert them so i can bring them where i am so i don't have to be subjected to crap when i commute to and from the office.

but i love my collection. i pick out one tape from the many that i have and listen to them when i feel like cleaning my room. or when i have a big bag. or going on a trip where i'm driving and i don't have a passenger who'll complain that the music is crap. or when i just want to cry.

i don't really have any regrets. maybe when technology does wage war against humans, i have my old tapes (i keep them in good condition - no moists) to keep me company and the music i love as my radar.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

stories about finding self in the form of an abs match



by the time that i write this, most of you have already seen the romantic comedy starring Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds.

The Proposal is about a canadian editor-in-chief of a book publishing company, played by Sandra Bullock, who proposes/blackmails her assistant, played by Ryan Reynolds into marrying her, just so she wouldn't be deported.

i can relate to the film because: 1) i'm an EA; 2) i'm a writer who wants to touch other people's lives through the written word; 3) i am not in good terms with my father; 4) i've been so used to being alone.

jeez, and people saw it because of the love story and the fact that both lead actors were naked in the film in one scene.

i have to say that Betty White stole the show on this one. the woman's comic timing is impeccable. i enjoyed her so much, i watched it twice.

***



another movie i saw was Wanted, which starred Angelina Jolie and James McAvoy. the movie had a good run on cable and since i never really got to see it on the big screen i saw it every chance i got. i didn't even know it was adapted from a graphic novel.

Wanted is about an account manager named Wes, (James) who is perpetually nagged by his overbearing boss (they really have to put an overweight woman for this character, huh?), he takes medication for panic attacks and has a live-in girlfriend who cheats on him with his jerk officemate/"best friend". he finds out through a woman named Fox (Angelina) that his father has been murdered and he is an heir to a legacy of assassins. they train him, well, they torture him at first before he gets it and the real training begins.

now, i do have a penchant for crying at the weirdest of times in the most unlikely movies. i cried watching Wanted. you know that part where Cross helps Wesley, they were on the verge of falling off a deep ravine, then Wes feels so bad about shooting him because Cross turns out to be his father? yep, that scene.

you search yourself your whole life because of that one part of you that's missing. just when you thought you've found the truth about you, it turns out to be a lie. yeah, that's happened to me too many times too.

***

so who do you think has better looking abs? Ryan Reynolds or James McAvoy?