What Did Mark Twain Mean By “Good Books?”

As a bookworm, I am always bombarded with book-related stuff that I see daily on my Facebook newsfeed. Over the years, I have repeatedly stumbled upon this quote by the great Samuel Clemens a.k.a. Mark Twain, which reads:

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Source: Picture Quotes

The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them. – Mark Twain

This quote always makes me stop and question myself, what did Twain mean by “good books?” I bet many bibliophiles would agree with him on this one, but even then, I wonder what others think about this.

“Good,” in this context, is such a vague adjective that does not imply anything unless Mark Twain explicitly defined this in one of his writings. “Good” is one of those adjectives (like beauty) which meaning entirely depends on the reader. That said, this single word makes the entire quote irrelevant.

Think about it. If some self-aggrandizing bookworm who prefers non-fiction books were to use that quote to justify that her taste is better than those who prefer Wattpad stories, her statement wouldn’t make sense at all.

Wattpad Reader: Wattpad is life!

Self-Aggrandizing Bookworm: Really? You should read the good stuff! Did you know that Mark Twain said that the man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them?

Likewise, if a World Literature professor were to use the quote to back her claims that classic novels are better than young adult novels, she’d be making a fallacy.

World Literature Professor: So, what did you read over the weekend?

Student: Young adult books! Harry Potter is life!

World Literature Professor: Young one, you should be reading books with substance. Why not try classics? Mark Twain said that the man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them. Mark Twain is a legend. Believe him.

Student:

Young Adult Books:

Floor:

Simply stated, quoting Twain to justify our opinion about which books are “good” is total BS. In fact, the quote itself is a generalization and somehow demeans those who can’t read books. You see, even the phrase “can’t read books” in this context is too indefinite. Was Twain referring to the blind, illiterate, or impoverished?

I know some people who do not read books who are as smart as some bookworms I know. My point is, just because you are a bookworm doesn’t mean you’re smarter than those who don’t read. Although I believe well-read people have advantages over those who aren’t, being a bibliophile does not give us a free pass to insult the intellectual capacity of non-readers.

I hope people would stop using this quote from Mark Twain if their only intention is to humiliate others. Perhaps the better quotation would be from J.K. Rowling:

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Source: Pinterest

If you don’t like to read, you haven’t found the right book. – J.K. Rowling

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This Is How You Deal With a Smart Woman Based on Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl

After I returned the copy of the book to my workmate, I knew that I needed to put my thoughts into writing immediately. Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl has fucked my mind, perhaps not in the way that you think or the way it fucked yours, but it did. Hard. While critiques focused on the story, twist, structure, and the author’s style of writing, here’s me writing about the relationship advice I got from the book.

Here’s the thing: I believe that when we read a book, it is the book that reads us and not the other way around. Gone Girl has read my mind: I am like Amy in so many ways, sans the murderess and psychopath part.

No, I am not a killer. No, I am not a psychopath. But if having a brain with no switch, being an over-thinker, and hating on the subject of sexism, misogynistic men, cheaters, and Cool Girls mean being like Amy, then count me in.

When a Guy Falls in Love With a Smart Woman

You know the cliche, “men want her and women want to be her”? That’s the best way to describe Amazing Amy. And Nick? He’s good-looking, he’s hardworking, but he’s poor and has personal issues. He didn’t want to be like his father–the man who abused his mother, the man who calls all women a bitch. Nick was eager to prove that he was not like his misogynistic dad but things got a little out of hand after he married Amy–he lost his job, his mother died, he couldn’t give Amy the life that she wanted. Nick was a failure; he couldn’t be the hero in Amy’s life.

Amy was eager to compromise–to live in a lonely town in Missouri and leave her fabulous life in New York. Isn’t that what love should be? Unconditional? Amy was fine with all these until she was not. She found out that Nick had a mistress.

To say that Nick felt belittled when he couldn’t give Amy the life they both wanted was an understatement. Subconsciously, he wanted Amy to make him feel that he was still his hero, his man. But he refused to tell Amy this because he didn’t want her to think that he was weak. And then he met Andie, the Cool Girl who gave him everything. He chose to ran away from his problems by turning to  this girl who soon became his mistress.

Andie was the opposite of Amy: Andie was also pretty, yes, but mediocre. Andie would give everything to him. Andie did not challenge him. In short, being with Andie was easy. With no curves thrown on the road, he felt superior again. With Amy–his beautiful, smart, almost-perfect wife–everything seemed to be a challenge. Amy’s mind was always three steps ahead of him. Amy’s lifestyle was grander than his. Amy took charge of their life. All of these belittled Nick and hurt his ego as a man. Why would he settle for Amy when there’s Andie? Why would he choose the bumpy road over the empty highway?

This is the problem when a guy falls in love with a smart woman. It’s a matter of pride and ego. When a woman takes charge of your life and orders you to do this and that, of cours, you’ll feel like  shit. You think because you are the man, you should always have the last word, the final say. Gender role issues.

If your woman tells you that she loves you despite your flaws and imperfections, believe her. She wouldn’t be with you in the first place if that’s not true. You may be intimidated by her strong personality at times, but that’s just how she is, especially if her brain has no switch. If she loves you enough to accept your flaws, then you don’t have to try hard to level with her intelligence. What Bob Marley said was true after all:

“If she’s amazing, she won’t be easy. If she’s easy, she won’t be amazing. If she’s worth it, you won’t give up. If you give up, you’re not worthy. Truth is, everybody’s going to hurt you. You just gotta choose who’s worth suffering for.”

Remember that.

Here’s a letter of Amy to Nick to make you feel better:

” So we both have things we want to work on. For me, it’d be my perfectionism, my occasional (wishful thinking?) self-righteousness. For you? I know you worry that you’re sometimes too distant, too removed, unable to be tender or nurturing. Well, I want to tell you that isn’t true. You need to know that you are a good man, you are a sweet man, you are kind. I’ve punished you for not being able to read my mind sometimes, for not being able to act in exactly the way I wanted you to act right at exactly that moment. I punished you for being a real, breathing man. I ordered you around instead of trusting you to find your way. I didn’t give you the benefit of the doubt: that no matter how much you and I blunder, you always love me and want me to be happy. And that should be enough for any girl, right? I worry I’ve said things about you that aren’t actually true, and that you’ve come to believe them. So I am here to say now: You are WARM. You are my sun.”

How to Make This Kind of Relationship Work

When Nick and Amy first fell in love with each other, everything was all about hearts and flowers. They were attracted to each other; both tried their best to please the other. But then life happened and got in the way. They must now face the married life, and as it turned out, the true Amy was not a Cool Girl–the girl who laughs at your silly jokes, does silly things to please you, watches silly movies even though she hates the sexism and lightness of the story, etc.–she was a deep woman who can’t be pleased with mediocre, silly things. Still, Amy tried her best to compromise because she loved Nick so much. Nick loved her beyond words, too. But losing his job, the death of his mother, and the pressure of it all got the best of him. He cheated on his wife because that’s the only way he knew that could keep him sane.

When I reached this part of the book, I sighed and told myself this was too basic. Lack of communication, of course. I can’t stress enough the importance of communication in a relationship. Many couples take this advice for granted, seemingly oblivious to the fact that more than fifty percent of marriages fail because of lack of communication.

You see, Nick and Amy both loved each other but failed to communicate their innermost feelings and desires when they were at their most vulnerable. The inevitable happened. Nick found comfort in the arms of another woman who could give everything that his wife couldn’t. Truth is, Amy was willing to compromise further if he only told her. Nothing of this would have happened if they worked things out before their problems became too much for them to handle. Communication. Honesty is important, too. Obviously.

When you love someone, you should also be willing to compromise. Personally, I don’t believe in unconditional love. There will always be some things that you need to give up to make a relationship work unless you are a perfect couple. Remember what Amy said at the end?

“I was told love should be unconditional. That’s the rule, everyone says so. But if love has no boundaries, no limits, no conditions, why should anyone try to do the right thing ever? If I know I am loved no matter what, where is the challenge?”

True love is always challenging. If everything is about hearts and flowers, how would know if he or she is the one? How would you appreciate the sunshine if you haven’t seen the rain? True love is always hard; it’s always difficult. When you get past all these challenges, only then will you see that he or she is the person worth waiting, fighting, dying, and above all, living for.

Communicate, compromise, be honest with your partner and everything will fall into place. It might sound easy or hard–it ‘s up to you. But if you’re both determined to make your relationship last, everything is survivable. Just look at how things ended up for Nick and Amy. This might be a work of fiction, but it fucking happens in real life. And no, I’m not talking about the killing part, but the failure of a marriage? Yes, that happens. Gillian Flynn has been kind enough to destroy the lives of her characters to teach you a lesson; be modest enough to take it from her.

Book Giveaway: What’s A Christian To Do With Harry Potter

Hello! I’m hosting a book giveaway for the first time and I can’t contain my giddiness right now.

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Item for my first book giveaway

I love  books more than people, so why am I giving away one of my prized possessions?

I have always been the type of person who likes to lend the books that inspired her or changed her perspectives in life. Unfortunately, I’ve been victimized by careless borrowers who did not baby my babies and evil people who did not understand my love and passion for books too many times. As I’ve mentioned in one my previous posts, I’ve had enough of these people.

I’m giving away this book because I want to inspire other people and I’m feeling a bit generous ‘cos it’s Christmas time (duh). I haven’t read it yet, to be honest, but I’ve read The Gospel According to Harry Potter (which was borrowed by one of my ‘friends’ and was never returned to me) and they were kind of the same. Also, I’m not in the mood for a religion-related book right now (or for the years to come).

REQUIREMENTS:

  1. You must be a Potterhead.
  2. You must be Catholic/Christian.

I’ll announce the winner on December 18. Good luck!

UPDATE!!!!!!

And the winner is… Kim Gracia! Kim is a smart seventh-grader from Tanay, Rizal who loves to read books. She is also a Potterhead and a Christian. I gave the book to her when we visited them to celebrate their father’s birthday. Kim is my boyfriend’s younger sister (hehe).

Stay tuned for more book giveaways!

Harry Potter Visits My Bookshelf

Harry was eager to win the Quidditch match and beat the Slytherins to the finals when he saw these seven giant books that bore his name in shining, shimmering gold letters.

Like a boy enthralled by the beauty of a veela, Harry could not take his eyes off of these towering books. He flew up to the sky until he reached the top of the enormous books when he was hit by a bludger. Before Harry could turn around and find out what happened, the Slytherins cheered as Draco, a boy with sleek blond hair and ice gray eyes, was lifted in the air.

Draco was holding the golden snitch, a tiny ball the size of a walnut, as he stared at Harry with a condescending sneer on his face. And just like that, the Gryffindors lost their last chance to win the house cup.

***

Confessions of a Dumb Girl: My 2016 Anvil Grand Christmas Sale Experience

Note: the following are confessions of a dumb girl who loves books and learns a lot from them but is stupid enough not to learn how to prepare for a book sale event like this.

I have always been a fan of book sale events and discounted books in general. In fact, half of the books on my shelves are hauls from different book sale events. That’s why when Anvil posted this photo on Facebook,

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Photo Souce: Anvil’s Facebook Page

I saved the details on my phone immediately. But then, life happened and got in the way.

Tip #1: Don’t let life get in the way of your dreams. (wiw)

So there was I, three weeks late for the grand opening of the grand warehouse sale. I’m not really a fan of sharing my stupidity with other people, but here’s my confession: I went there without knowing what types of books they publish. When I heard about the event, I pictured the National Bookstore warehouse sale where you get to bring home books of different genres like foreign classics, foreign young-adults, and foreign everything.

I was wrong.

Tip #2: Mag-research muna tungkol sa publication house.

Rey Christian (my boyfriend), Eca (my friend), Arsen (her boyfriend), and I haven’t been to Kapitolyo before, so we had a hard time finding the exact location of the warehouse. Eca and Rey, who both happen to work in Mandaluyong, were also not familiar with the place. Yes, they both know that Kapitolyo was only one jeep away from SM Megamall, but they didn’t know exactly how to get there. I was the one who invited them in the first place and I knew that I must be solely responsible for the directions and all. Sadly for them, I was never the street-smart girl. (Excuses. I was really not prepared.)

Tip#3: Alaming mabuti kung paano pumunta sa pupuntahan (?).

We all met at SM Megamall. We asked a random kuya how to get to Kapitolyo and he told us that it’s only three stoplights away from where we were. We could commute but were greeted by a long line of commuters waiting for the next jeepney. So, rather than waiting in vain, we walked. And walked. And walked. When we reached the third stoplight, we asked yet another random kuya if we’ve reached our destination. He told us that we were still two stoplights away from there. So, there. We walked and walked until we lost count of how many stoplights we’ve passed. After what seemed like forever, we asked a random ate if we’ve accomplished our mission. We did.

Tip#4: Wag maniwala sa random kuyas. Magtanong sa random ate para may chance na tama.

So this was the #Kapitolyo that I’ve been seeing on the Instagram posts of my pa-cool kid friends. As procrastinators, Eca and I checked our phones for the warehouse location for the first time. We asked a random tricycle driver where Bo’s Jungle was, but all we got from him was “Malayo pa ‘yun” before he turned his back on us. We asked three more random tricycle drivers before we finally discovered that we needed one more tricycle ride to get there.

Tip#5: Ask the fourth random tricycle driver to be safe.

We’re finally there! I never imagined I would blog about this experience, so I didn’t bring any camera. Eca brought hers, but I never thought I would need pictures for my blog. To make a long story short, I won’t be able to show you pictures of us at the Anvil warehouse.

Tip#6: Magdala ng camera kung may blog ka, you know, just in case (sad face).

It was a long journey, but when we saw the poster outside the warehouse and realized that it really was a warehouse, Eca and I couldn’t contain our giddiness. I’ve been to a few warehouse sale events before and I remembered that the NBS ATC Warehouse Sale in 2014 was not held in a warehouse. A bigger location means more chances of scoring more amazing finds. Yay!

Tip#7: Kapag sinabing warehouse sale, i-expect mo na sa warehouse gaganapin.

After we left our bags at the guard’s station, we immediately reached for a basket. Eca, having heard stories from her friends about the kind of books there, dropped her basket as soon as she laid her hands on it, saying that she would never need it anyway. Judging by the Facebook poster, I expected to see classics and YAs and some textbooks perhaps, but what greeted me were mostly textbooks and reference books, textbooks, and reference books.

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Photo Source: Anvil’s Facebook Page

Anvil also posted this photo on Facebook, which set my expectations for the warehouse sale. I’m a fan of classic novels and I really wanted to buy an Anne of Green Gables book. But when we got there, I realized that maybe if we went there earlier, we could have laid hands on more great books.

Tip#8: Refer to tips number 1 and 2.

Then, the quest for books that spark my interest began. As I scanned the place and browsed through the titles, I found several (14 to be exact) that piqued my interest. I haven’t heard or seen these books before but I don’t judge by title either – I read the synopsis or overview on the back and scan the pages first before I buy a book. Let me show you my haul:

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I got these 14 books for P410.00 plus the eco bag that costs P15.00. Not bad, especially because I got this treasure, which was also the most expensive of all (P100.00).

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I never really bothered with history or politics when I was a student. I only became a concerned citizen when I became a registered voter, but I have always been anti-Marcos. I hope this book would enlighten me about what really happened during the Marcos era and teach me what students won’t learn from textbooks and history books in school.

***

After we checked out at the counter, we realized that our hands needed some TLC. Eca brought her alcohol but there were only a few drops left. Luckily for us, his boyfriend brought his monster-sized alcohol.

Tip#9: Bring a friend who has a boyfriend who has a monster-sized alcohol.

We ended our day with a few beers. It has been ages since we last met and we figured we might as well drink the night away, just like the old times.

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From Pasig, we went to Malate to satisfy our cravings for Erra’s famous ramen and shut our growling stomachs. Despite the long journey from our offices to Megamall to Anvil to Malate, we had fun.

Tip#10: Pay for the buttered chicken that you all devoured, motherfuckers.

***

On a serious note, here are some useful tips that [I wasn’t able to use but] I want to share with you so you can have a fun, stress-free book shopping experience:

1. Since it’s a warehouse sale, expect stains, creases, torn covers, and tanning pages on the books. Bring one or more of the following because your hands will need some major TLC after scanning the dusty shelves, boxes, and piles:

  • Alcohol
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Tissue
  • Wet Wipes

2. When you find a good book that sparked your interest, don’t settle for that copy right away. Books inside the warehouse are scattered everywhere and you might find a better copy with less physical flaws after a while. I always do this whenever I visit warehouse sales, so I end up with copies that look good, if not as new. Below is a picture of the books in my haul. These copies have less tanning pages and spine creases compared to other books that I found there.

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3. Bring an eco bag. If you don’t have one, they sell eco bags at the warehouse for P15.00 each.

4. Research about the books that they publish so you know what to expect.

5. Don’t judge a book by its cover. Anvil offers readers like me a great opportunity to get to know Filipino authors and their works. I expected to see good YA and classic reads but the treasures that I found were so much better than I imagined. If you are a student, you can score a variety of textbooks that are hard to find at very low prices.

6. Be there early. I’m not sure if they restock books because it’s a warehouse sale, but I believe you’ll have more options at the warehouse’s opening hours.

7. Avoid the rush hours (and Fridays, too) for obvious reasons. (But if you’re dumb like me and you went there during rush hours, you’ll do better if you walk the distance from Megamall to Kapitolyo instead of waiting for a jeep. It’s faster and more hassle-free.)

8. Always be prepared. If you want directions, Google is always at your service, thank you very much. #AlwaysChallengeYourself

The event runs until December 10, so grab your eco bags and wallet now, visit the Anvil Grand Christmas Sale, and score amazing books from Filipino authors.

The Evolution of My Bookshelves

Before my father built my hanging bookshelf and turned my dream into reality, my books were just carefully stacked on top of my study table.

March 2014

I started collecting books in March 2014. I was reading John Green’s Looking for Alaska when an inspiration hit me: I wanted to create my own version of Alaska Young’s Life’s Library. Here’s what my books looked like back then:

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The Beginning Stages of Airen Petalbert’s Life’s Library

The Airen Petalbert’s Life’s Library included The Morganville Vampire Series, a thesaurus, dictionaries, Dan Brown books, English language books, and some Norman Vincent Peale books, among others.

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My friends and I at the ATC Warehouse Sale

When National Bookstore announced that a warehouse sale was about to take place at their Quezon Avenue branch, my best friend and I grabbed our almost-empty wallets and went on a book shopping spree.

However, it seemed that NBS was desperate to clean their warehouses before the year closed. They launched another series of warehouse sales at different branches, including Alabang Town Center. The previous warehouse sale made a hole in my wallet, but thanks to my friends who lend me some money, I was able to take home a bagful of books.

December 2014

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The Domino Effect

After many visits to different branches of Book Sale, nine months’ worth of savings from my daily allowance, and Scholastic Publishing’s warehouse sale, my book stack couldn’t hold the weight of my babies anymore. On my Instagram post, I called it the “domino effect.”

My collection now includes the John Green Boxed Set, the Hunger Games series, some Oxford classics, complete Jane Austen books, Pride and Prejudice fan fiction books, some YAs, and more classics. The books on the first layer were all classics. The stack on the right side were all English language reference books.

When I posted the photo above on Instagram, one of my friends suggested that I buy a bookshelf. I knew beforehand that that was the most practical thing to do, but I liked seeing my books stacked up like this on top of my study table. Also, I didn’t think my room could accommodate another tenant–my room was already cramped with my and my sisters’ stuff. It was only when my friend debated the pros of having a bookshelf that I  finally considered it.

My Malnourished Book Tree

As the plan was not attainable at the moment, I settled for an out-of-the-box idea that’s also a space-saver. And since Christmas was just around the corner, the timing couldn’t be more perfect. I turned my stack into a book tree and embellished it with low-cost Christmas decorations.

I know that the tree looked malnourished, but this was the best I could do after so many failed attempts. I had to call my younger siblings to help me figure out which books should go where. Stacking up books of different weights and sizes to form the shape of a pine tree was easier said than done, to be honest. It took a lot of blood, sweat, and tears to build them up. We spent almost three hours for this poor thing only to come up with a malnourished tree. Poor me (and poor tree).

November 2015

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When the new year came, I became so occupied with school activities. As a graduating student, I had to prioritize my school requirements and this meant less time and money for books. Time went so fast–I graduated and became employed, but all those times I had no new books.

Thanks to National Bookstore and their desperation to sell flop books at discounted prices, the book hauler in me was finally able to get back in the game. They held a warehouse sale in August, which allowed me to bring home 16 books for just  P1,100.00. Here’s my haul:

2015 NBS Warehouse Sale Haul

December 2015

It was December once again and Christmas was only a few weeks away. After a one-year hiatus, I tried to up my book decorating game once again. This time, the result was satisfying. First, let me take a selfie.

Selfie sa Book Tree

I also bought Christmas decorations at Divisoria to breathe life into the tree. On the following day, I bought fake flowers, a star, and Christmas lights. Here’s my masterpiece:

My Beautiful Book Tree

July 2016

My father returned from Saudi on July 2016. On my graduation day, he promised to give me a Harry Potter book set, but we had to prioritize my graduation fees. When he arrived home, I was surprised when he handed me a big Duty Free plastic bag and said, “Di ko alam kung meron ka na niyan.” I didn’t have the slightest idea what was inside the plastic bag so I was at loss for words when I saw books. And mind you, they were not just books–they were THE Harry Potter Bloomsbury Edition books.

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My Harry Potter Bloomsbury Edition Books

On the following day, I decided to stack my books on top of my cabinet. Here’s what the pile looked like:

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My Book Pile

As of writing, my collection includes more than 250 books. Some books were never returned to me by ex-friends. Yup, I burn bridges with people who do not understand my love and passion for books. My high school best friends never returned my copies of The Book Thief and Looking for Alaska, two of my most treasured books. Since then, I decided it’s friendship over for us.

Some people who borrowed my books did not handle them with care. There was one girl who even left a ketchup stain on my copy of Paper Towns. One girl returned my paperback copy of The Fault in Our Stars with a torn cover. I unfriended them all on social media.

“You can’t buy happiness but you can buy books, and that’s kind of the same thing.”

For me, happiness = books and books = happiness. I’d rather have books than friends.

September 2016

Two months later, my father started working on my bookshelf. My mother suggested a hanging bookshelf and I agreed without hesitation. I could only imagine how beautiful the result would be.

One day, I came home from work exhausted, but my mood was instantly lifted when my new bookshelf welcomed me. I was like a kid in a candy shop when I saw the spectacle before me. I also loved the new colors of my walls. It was worth the wait, after all.

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My Hanging Bookshelves

[Update] October 2016

The photo above was taken last September. My shelf now includes these amazing finds that I bought (at a discounted price, of course) at NBS Tutuban:

Classic Libraries

[Update] November 2016

On October, my friends, boyfriend, and I went to Pasig to check out the Anvil Grand Christmas Sale. Here’s what my shelves looked like after adding my hauls. Read my blog post about the event for more details.

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My Hanging Bookshelves Plus More Books

[Update] December 2016

Instead of embellishing my room with Christmas decorations, my family decided it would be better if we invest on something that would last. I chose this The Beatles mural, which my siblings painted on my wall. For more information about this family project, see my blog post about this.

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My Hanging Bookshelves & The Beatles On My Wall

[Update] July 2017

So, I finally decided to arrange my books by color (hue, actually). I have two words: hirap, bes. It took me nearly three hours to accomplish this but hey, admit it: it’s worth it, right?

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AAAAND, here’s me gracing your screen with a bunch of photos featuring my face. LOL

 

Until next time, folks!

To be continued…

​Singletons Come Together to Watch Bridget Jones’s Baby on the Big Screen

(Spoilers Ahead)

By way of introduction, I am not a Singleton by any means. But Singleton or not, I’ve fallen head over heels for Bridget Jones’s love and life story ever since I read the first two books: Bridget Jones’s Diary and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason. I was lucky enough to get into a fight with my boyfriend (ironically) when the third movie came out, so I took the opportunity to go to the movie theater alone. I did not regret a single thing. In fact, I actually loved the experience. Here’s why:

Bridget Jones’s Baby was screened in selected Philippine cinemas and I chose Robinsons Place Manila because it was the nearest mall to me. When I found out from ClickTheCity’s website that the movie was to be screened in the mall’s Cinema 1, I knew right there and then that this was the perfect place to be. The cinema houses only like a hundred seats and it rarely ever gets full. As an introvert, I would NEVER watch a movie in a theater if it’s full of people–annoying and pretentious people to be exact–which is always the case with mainstream films (Star Cinema, MMFF, Marvel, and the likes) and mainstream indie (yup, it’s a thing nowadays) films like the movies in Cinemalaya.

As you would have guessed, the cinema was not even half full. There were only like 30 of us and as expected, ALL of us were WOMEN. I was not surprised at all. When I pictured myself going to the cinema house earlier that day, I saw a place full of Singletons who see themselves as Bridget Jones in real life.

The Bridget Jones movies were not blockbuster hits in the Philippines, so I guess the people who came to watch the third movie were either those who have read the books, those who have watched the first two movies and loved it, those who have both read the books and watched the movie and went head over heels for them, and those who review movies for a living.

As I scanned the place, I saw women who went alone, women in groups, and even one pregnant woman who went on her own. I think these women went to see the movie because they can relate to Bridget Jones for a number of reasons. I did. In fact, I think we all did.

I think it’s safe to say that majority of us who watched the third installation can see a reflection of ourselves in Bridget Jones: the clumsy, awkward hopeless romantic who keeps a diary to keep track of her accomplishments but life always gets in the way to ruin her plans so she ends up being alone most of the time (even, as she stated in the movie, when she and Darcy were together). When our favorite heroine appeared on the screen, I knew. In that moment, Bridget Jones was all of us.

In that moment, Bridget Jones was all of us.

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Bridget’s Big Comeback and Her Big Problems: Two Boys and a Big Bump

Enter the new and improved Bridget Jones on the big screen. We all felt sorry for Daniel Cleaver, but laughed our heads off when our favorite heroine started acting like her normal self: the woman who speaks and moves awkwardly in front of people. When All By Myself started playing in the background on her 43rd birthday, we knew that our Bridget Jones was back.

Things are going quite well as Bridget celebrates her 43rd birthday. She’s single again, but her life has been fine without Darcy–Bridget is now a big-time television producer. But no matter how hard she tries to be happy in the company of her friends and family, Bridget must face the truth this time: she is not getting any younger. At the age of 43, she might lose her last chance to conceive a baby. All of her friends were already married and having children. Though she won’t admit it, our poor heroine is alone again.

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Photo Source: Google

But life has its own way of reminding us of our past in the most unexpected ways. Bridget bumps into Mark Darcy for the first time after their breakup–only this time, he’s with his wife. We all thought that the quiet Mark Fitzwilliam Darcy, whom we fell in love with in the first two movies, is the one true love of our much-loved protagonist. Sadly, they broke up because Darcy had been busy with his work, leaving Bridget feeling alone most of the time.

When Bridget’s friend Miranda takes her to a music festival for a birthday treat, they made a deal that Bridget would have sex with the first man that she stumbles upon. Here comes our dashing debonair who goes by the name Jack Qwant, the billionaire who owns a dating site that matches couples according to the algorithm of love. And knowing how things come and go in Bridget’s life, they met in the most awkward (and disgusting) way–by falling into the mud.

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Photo Source: Google

Bridget and Miranda let their hair down at the music festival until they get drunk and accidentally went their separate ways. Miranda finds herself making out with Ed Sheeran, while our Bridget finds herself entering the wrong tents trying to find her lost friend. Thanks to the Gods above, she ends up in the tent of our handsome Jack. As expected, they had passionate sex between the sheets. Next morning, Bridget again finds herself alone.

Like the past two movies, the film made me feel a roller coaster of emotions. I laughed so hard, especially when Ed Sheeran, one of my favorite singer-songwriters, appeared. I personally liked how Bridget, a 43-year old woman who tried her best to act cool, to look and feel young, and to let her hair down at a music festival, failed at the “look young” part when she did not recognize Ed Sheeran. I was amazed at how the writers and director presented the irony and the truth–that Bridget is getting old and that she already needs to settle down but there she was: enjoying life and setting aside the loneliness that comes from being alone but still worried that she might end up like this for the rest of her life. It was also the choices of songs like Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran and Gangnam Style by Psy that helped present the irony of the situation.

Things go back to normal as the two ladies go home. A good news welcomes Bridget this time–one of her friends invites her to become the godmother of her child. As it turns out, the godfather is the one and only Mr. Mark Darcy.

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Photo Source: Universal Pictures

Here comes the most kilig moment for me: Darcy kisses Bridget instead of the baby when the photographer urges them to try to look happy because it is, after all, a christening and not a funeral. I even made the screenshot of that scene my cover photo on Facebook because you see, I’m at a loss for words until now.

Being the only godparents in the event, the past lovers are forced to talk to each other. Things are awkward until Darcy invites Bridget to get some air. Now, we see the sparks of an old flame coming to life again. Bridget finds out that Darcy and his wife divorced and they kiss and kiss and kiss and kiss and kiss and kiss and make love upstairs.

Bridget Jones's Baby
Photo Source: Universal Pictures

Bridget Rose Jones is now pregnant, and she’s never been happier in her entire life. Now the big question is, who is the daddy? Is it Jack Qwant, the sweet debonair, or Mark Darcy, Bridget’s could-have-been-hubby?

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Photo Source: Google

I won’t go into details now because I don’t want to spoil you (if you want to know the ending, go watch the movie). I’m ending this by giving you a hint:

Jack Qwant is the prince charming that every woman wants to marry. Rich, handsome, sweet, and affectionate–it’s all things beautiful rolled into one. He even asked Bridget to come and live with him to start a family. Mark Darcy, on the other hand, loves Bridget beyond words, but his responsibility as a dedicated lawyer always gets in the way. The differences of Mark Darcy and Bridget Jones made their relationship even more difficult to handle. But whoever turns out to be the father of the baby, our favorite heroine is bound to get her happy ever after. She deserves it, though. We all do.

If you are a Bridget Jones at heart, continue to be yourself because there are so many of us out here who believe in the good and beauty in you. If Bridget Jones can find her own happy ending, so can you. Believe me, so can you.

If Bridget Jones can find her own happy ending, so can you.