Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The Ants in the Garden

PREVIOUSLY (June 10, 2014):

Dad was pumping water from the well awhile ago. And I was down by the kitchen, as I had to hide one of the snacks that came from the Philippines for fear that I would finish all of it within one week. (Because I'd only tasted this one after three years, more or less.) I laid it down on our dinner table, and heard electric sparks from the bug-killer badminton coming from outside. Whirring sounds were in the background, which was some working of the pump. It usually goes unnoticed as I go about my day, like my pulse or blinking.

This was quite a hot afternoon, despite rolling grey clouds that blanketed the sky. Maybe there was a break of it over the west and behind the mountains, because the sun bounced off our neighbour's houses, especially the white wall in front of our little garden. 

Then, I heard Dad call me to go outside. "Issa, come out and bring the camera! I found a funny shot," he shouted in a mix of Filipino and English. I was curious, wondering if it was some deformation of plant from a pot, a stray cat bounding off the abandoned doghouse, or some other oddity that made its way into our garage. I skipped toward his Borealis North Face bag by a couch and fished for the camera.  

I burst out of the brown door, and handed him the camera, searching for the thing he vocally beckoned me for. "Here," he said, and went near the electric pump. He directed the camera to the wall. "Ants carrying something heavy." I squinted, and searched the white wall. There was a thimble-sized yellow particle of food, circled by tinier ants. Probably a disintegrated lemon. 

I chuckled, and watched Dad move the camera as close as he could to the ants, and at the ants who were sturdily lifting food for their colony. Some other ants skittered up and down, occasionally stopping to deliver messages with their antennas, but no stop too long. So it seemed like the circle of ants were on their own. Yet they crawled onwards, upwards.

They progressed on higher up the wall, and Dad took some shots. I regretted not being able to take some on my own camera, because it was gathering dust atop my desk as the battery was uncharged: a subject of procrastination. The camera had a crisp image of them, it was so precise that I could see their tiny little legs, mandibles and many other things I couldn't have observed with the naked eye in full detail. I was amazed. Although, seeing the pictures on the camera's screen itself is pretty different than seeing it on a laptop. Now, the pictures seem blurred and discoloured, unlike the first time I saw them.

Few more seconds passed, and Dad lifted the camera and said we could go back inside. Then, because of a childish urge, I asked, "Can I flick them off the wall?" An expression of mischief flitted for a second on his face, and then grew stern. He shook his head, frowning. I gave one last look at the ants on the wall, and trotted back into the house. 

Taking my slippers off inside, I began to think up some lessons and deeper observations concerning the ants from outside. The points I thought of were:

A.) What bad would it be if I take them out, they are just small, there will be many more ants and more food.
B.) I am big; the ants are small.
C.) Forager ants risk their lives going out to take the food like the scouts who preceded them. In fact, they face bad weather, enemy ants, and predators while gathering food. It is a suicide mission.
D.) Small things shouldn't be underestimated, they become big to us too on a level. 
E.) As a person, I can empathise with them on a human scale.

So, A. first. What bad would it be if I take them out, they are just small, there will be many more ants and more food. Why not, right? It would be fun seeing their reaction after they've fallen off four feet and crashed down on the rocky ground. And also, it would be interesting to feel the piece of yellow food on my fingers, and the ants furiously skittering, trying to defend it and themselves. But would I feel them bite me, smell the sweet acid they release when in danger, or, because they were a different species than what I saw in the sugar cubes they would do something I did not expect? 

Even if they were to be hurt because of what I did, wouldn't there be so many other ants deployed by their queen to gather food? The food that they carried was quite sizeable, but there would be more food, and after all, there is enough for everyone on this earth. 

Then comes B., I am big; the ants are small. Which is also like: I am a superior to them on so many levels. That means I can do whatever I want with the ants. I can govern them, help them bring the food higher (that one is quite difficult), take them away from the wall, crush them with my fingers, or bring out one of the ants and see what happens to the others. 

Nevertheless, I want to be a good superior, and good superiors have respect for those under them. Sometimes, it's because their respect for others that earned them up to that high place. But I was born this way - a human, and I was appointed by God to be a manager of those below me. Yeah, yeah, sometimes I slack off and am not aware of that when I get angry at my younger siblings or not throw the trash in my room, 

but nonetheless, I am appointed. The ants are also not an exception.

Which leads us to C., which is a very important thing to everyone. Small things shouldn't be underestimated, they become big to us too on a level. It's been tested and proven that little things are sometimes catalysts for change. For example...
One pebble can kill a nine-foot giant. A simple word can cause a city-wide riot. One drop of liquid can cause an explosive reaction. A short fifteen year-old boy revolutionised in the area of computers and programming, and today the operating systems he developed is running on almost every computer today (Trey Gates ;) you know). One sentence of affirmation can uplift a person's rainy day. And, one ant is just as important as the whole colony. One piece of yellow food will also be a good contribution to their food supply.

We can also remember that it's the ants who help our soil become aerated, clean the ecosystem by taking what food we don't need and the dead animals into their nests, and controlling the pests on our crops. 
On the other hand, ants can be a hindrance to the buildings they intrude with a fleet of themselves, cause economic losses if they invade, say, a food factory, and of course, when we don't store our leftover food into the refrigerator. So, we have to be good stewards of them, as said earlier, and muddle in a little bit when things get too out of hand. 

Now, D. "'Forager ants risk their lives going out to take the food like the scouts who preceded them. In fact, they face bad weather, enemy ants, and predators while gathering food.' It is a suicide mission." I think that speaks for itself… 
I learned this in Science last year. I was a self-studying homeschooler, so I got to think a lot then. And I also remember being inspired and motivated by the tiny little beings that God put near us, and thanking Him for them, because of things stated in the point prior to this.

Finally, E. As a person, I can empathise with them on a human scale. Possibly in every person comes a point where they think, what if that occurrence would happen to me, or the people that I love? This happens to me quite a lot. 

So I imagine, what if one day I was going to the grocery to buy some snacks for a long-planned road trip, when suddenly, a giant deadpan humanoid takes me on its hand and drops me down from the 3rd floor grocery? (The conclusion is my untimely death, or serious injury taking me out from the road trip. Ants are lucky, they've got exoskeletons to prevent this, I guess). And what if, like in dystopian books and films, I was one of the persons selected by some drawing of straws to leave the refuge barricaded by a strong, tall, white barrier to hunt for food outside in the overgrown, treacherous and post-apocalyptic world unknown? (I don't know what will become of me on this one :c). Haha, that was awesome, Imagination. But seriously.


I know, the ants don't have any souls, but out of God-given mercy I sometimes empathise that way. Like Ender Wiggin. And on another turn of my mind I remembered our wars of today, the MH370 plane crash, the refugees from Syria and Iraq, White House Down (yes lol), and suddenly it's too strong that I want to finish the debate with myself.

This was the final point that sealed the other good ones in my mind. 

Now I had wrapped up on a decision… to leave them be. 

Yes. I viewed them in the impersonal way, and looked on with the personal. The premise of the small group of ants just another face in the population of an ant specie I couldn't decipher, versus the whimsical notion of pretending they were us, one of us people. The subject of leadership and persons responsible for someone else's belongings was also considered. Philosophies of "less is great", noble sacrifice, and empathy went around in my head. 

In addition, people are relational beings, so I related with the ants and with their way of life. Eventually, that understanding about the band of ants weighed down to the conclusion of me leaving them alone. 

After all that thought while shaking off my slippers (elaboration came in later), I continued on with my schoolwork, upstairs, and added a mental note to write the event of my Dad calling me to see some ants climbing up a wall with some food on my blog. 

And the ants on the wall, unseen by anyone, crawled up on their path to get home to their colony, deposited their findings to the food supply, rested a bit, and headed out again to collect the food directed by the shouts of the scout ants as they headed out into the great unknown.

A/N: YEEEEEEEEES!!!!!!!!!! Finally, after more than two months, I was able to curb writer's block (and my procrastination) to complete this autobiographical/persuasive essay :DDD I probably just need to do a little brushing up on some stuff I'll spot that's off with this, because, I've spent more than 2 hours on the thing and have more agendas. (And sorry for the gifs. I…just can't help but add them…)

Thanks for reading my essay.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

13 days left to be 13!!

Which means, birthday is soon!! *does happy dance*

just look at that spiderman tshirt

(notice, I'm not saying all this on September 4, cause man I wanna live it out 13 more times and not go out with a crash-bang :o plus I toned down on so many gifs but blast it they are distracting enough -_-)

Well, I guess it's right to say that I've only turned 13 on my 14th birthday, because of everything that I've experienced, gone through and accomplished before that time. 
13 had cast me unto the shores of another world, the teenage world, which is both exciting and terrifying at the same time. Exciting, because of the new horizons, new realisations and awarenesses, more privileges, enhanced abilities, and I'd become taller :p. Terrifying, because of the heightened responsibility, infodumps, pressing empathy and moods, I could see my past flaws in a way I hadn't before, and most of all, I'd been unclassified as a child (eh, sometimes I still am, but most times it's not there. I think this one is pretty hard to understand…).

My era of being 13 has been a multi-coloured coat that has no perfect edges, but when you swirl it around your back and the sun sparkles on it, you forget about everything else. (what XD). To recount it is gonna be real hard, but you've probably gone through it, are going through it, so you know bits and pieces (except if you are just gonna go through it). Let's just say it was brilliant adventure with Bollywood music.

I had been inspired to live a good, better life in more ways, and to help others travel on that path too. My God, my family, my friends and influences are the ones I wholly thank for being the fuel that makes my hollow gas tank go on. 

God, you are always there and you are my everything, thank you a thousand suns (real thank you, I owe ya one). Family, you are mostly there but you sometimes disappear into the walls of our house but that's alright, you are cherished and forever emblazoned in my heart. Friends, I know that some of you might be roads away or even countries away, but you always make a way for us to connect and communicate to be healed, have fun, spout out words or listen with full attention. You are held in high regard and I love you for being who you are and loving me back. Influences, (yeah, book authors, musicians, actors, artists, people in History, game developers, crown princes, etc.) of course you don't know I'm here (well, except for one book author) but in the essence of the word, you make a part of me. Thank you for doing what you love. Guys, really I just wanna

OKAY I really wanna sleep now so heres the real business O AO 
hahahahahahahhahahhaha, I'm joking :L 
Really, I have a lot of stuff already. Lol I don't want to be materialistic and be a toff or anything, but yeah I have too much. I'll probably just write down a list of things I'm gonna give away for my remaining 13 days bc ain't receiving too mainstream.
Eh? What's that I hear? You still wanna see my wish list? Srsly!? Okay, okay, just because you asked. (ahahahahhahaha)

I'll only put ten, you sweet chocolate biscuits, though my IRL list has 29. (few recycled from last year)
  1. Fancy notebook (old one's in ruins, but still has enough until October though)
  2. Marie Curie biography
  3. Artemis Fowl
  4. All seasons of Sherlock/Numb3rs
  5. Money xD
  6. A 3,000 word or more short story (Misha, I'm counting on you)
  7. Red t-shirt with a robot (Hiro Hamada cosplay :3)
  8. Let It Snow (winter is my fav season, yo)
  9. Framed art by you
  10. Sherlock's scarf
And ya. I'll take suggestions from anyone to put on a list of 13 stuff to do before I'm 14 hahahahaha wat. But I like checklists T_T 

Standing in Brooklyn just waiting for something to happen,

Saturday, August 23, 2014

O Ulan (o rain XD)

The rain is pouring so hard, and some might say life is tough because of that. Yet, the rain heralds the beginning of life, frees the seed from its bondage, returns what it has taken, beckons the adventurous and the ones with hearts of children to dance in it because no one has done it before, and is a sign from God that His blessings will arrive just as it gives itself up freely, with no bounds. So then, let us celebrate the rain with shouts of joy.

(thanks to Kyle Andaya for listening to me so I wrote that^ haha that was what I really meant I am so confusing bro (◕‿◕✿) you are awesome man)

Friday, August 22, 2014

"Memories are like a box of sweets ... once it opens then you can't eat just one piece."

I know, I haven't posted in AGES. So here is a consolation

He wants the stars in the night sky, 

but you are the sun.
He is yours, and you are his,
when everything comes undone.

inspired by a poem of Sachinee Seneviratne

and Premier League started! I cannot believe I hadn't posted anything related to it

btw this is my edit *so much proud*
Dear Oscar, Eden and Fernando, Why are you all married.

Lovely. Preseason I guess, didn't get a chance to have seen this.
Chelsea's first season game was at 12:45 AM, and sadly my schedule nowadays does not allow me to stay up for those games. My days of freedom and frolicking are dripping away as life chugs on.

And also, how come I didn't post anything about THIS^^^^^!!!!!! Shame, Samantha, shame!! I stayed till 4 and tweeted a lot but no one wants to read my tweets anyway, so.

 Still missing these baes :'( You know, one of my dreams was to play table football with David Luiz somewhere in Stamford Bridge. 
It's really sad when your favourite players leave your club. And now I hear Petr Čech might transfer too. But such is life.

The quote in the title is from Naina the scholar girl from the Bollywood movie, "Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani", which was absolutely marvellous. 9.5/10 I recommend, with English subtitles, if you don't speak Hindi, of course. Coming-of-age, scenic cinematography, dance-along music (it's Bollywood.), and so many philosophical quotes so I am really happy. Wow, I'm actually trying to convince you guys to watch a film… okay, bye.

P.S. My blog birthday was twelve days before this post. *nostalgic* So in honour of it, I am (hopefully) bringing back the tradition of posting everyday.