Originally posted on The Fem:

I am throwing out all of the clothes you touched me in.
I am burning every poem with your name in it.
But I am still holding onto some of the letters you wrote me.
I tell myself it’s to remember.
I tell myself it’s because I am afraid
of forgetting the early warning signs.
I tell myself I’m not sentimental.

I’m not sentimental.
I’m just afraid of throwing every burning thought
I have about you into the trash
and starting a wildfire.

I am shaking on the ground in my bedroom,
realizing that it is two years until I turn the age
you wanted to marry me at.
I am using the candles on my
twenty-first birthday cake
to burn “grow up” into my knees.
I am in the front row at a show,
realizing that if I heard this song two years ago,
I would have thought about…

View original 240 more words

satisficing, gerund/present participle.

  • a decision-making heuristic in which we consider only some options one by one and stop at what is good enough (not the best)
  • aim is just to meet the minimum level of acceptability
  • we assume we lower our standards if too many options fall short
  • what i’ve been doing with my blog/academic requirements/life as of late

i’m at that really confusing part of life where there are so many choices presented to me and i want to do everything–but ultimately freeze up, fold upon myself and end up not doing much at all. you’d think having a lot of options would be more freeing, but to the indecisive, it’s the most limiting thing ever.

Went through hell and back for Vantage Magazine. I’m reposting it here because I want to add my own photos + a link to its Storify. Check out our site and my co-staffers’ reviews, as well!

[View the story "Rissa x Oatmeal Diet" on Storify]


There’s a particular psych experiment that comes to mind when I look back on my diet. The Stanford Prison Experiment is exactly what it sounds like—a simulation of prison conditions where people played the role of prisoner and prison guard. Although it was set to run for two weeks, it had to be cut short on the sixth day due to how seriously the prison guards took their roles. The prisoners were subjected to hazing and other emotionally scarring acts of cruelty.

What am I getting at with this? You think you are consuming the food, but it will ultimately consume you.

I promise it will all make sense once you read my diet log.


In all its simplicity and fiber-rich goodness, oatmeal has become a household staple. I chose the oatmeal diet because, based on my inability to cook anything that isn’t preceded by the word instant, it was sustainable and realistic.

The plan—which I copped from Livestrong.com—is simple enough to follow: I’d have a one half-cup of oatmeal for breakfast, another half-cup of oatmeal for lunch, and any kind of low-calorie dinner.

I aim to eat almost exclusively oatmeal throughout the day; the plan was to constantly think up ways to make the wonder-grain taste at least a little interesting to the palate.

DAY 01: Off to a good start!

The diet is starting off well enough, what with all my determination to get the two weeks over with as soon as possible. Googling for the results fellow fad dieters got, I found a lot of people who were happy with eating oatmeal twice, nay, thrice a day because they liked the warm, satiated feeling it gave them.

I have a plethora of supplies in the kitchen to enhance the flavor (or lack thereof) of what is to be my life-source for the next few weeks; we had cinnamon, yogurt, apple slices, raisins, honey and brown sugar, just to name a few of my favorites.



My first breakfast is a half-cup of plain yogurt mixed with a half-cup of apple-cinnamon oatmeal, paired with my ever-present cup of black coffee. This isn’t a bad way to start the diet at all. It’s a visceral sort of pleasure to have the warm goop slide down one’s digestive tract. Kind of like being hugged from the inside, if that makes any sense.

Seeing as I am a student for most of the week, I’ve also decided to start bringing oatmeal to school. I’ve prepared two small jars, just the right size to hold half-cup servings, of raisin-cinnamon oatmeal. I threw in an apple into the lunchbox, for good measure.


Reactions from seatmates range from curious (“What is that?”) to pitiful (“I’m so sorry for you, your meal looks so sad.”) but with the common denominator of disgust, because oatmeal isn’t the prettiest whole grain there is.

Dinner is what Parokya Ni Edgar would lovingly call tortang talong. I’m going to sleep happy and well fed. Read More

the wrought-iron fences i’ve built are actually decrepit veneers.


“we’re doing this–

they examine the new material, unimpressed. they themselves had come from the forge. they have an eye for weaklings. familiar with its oxidic darkness, backs burdened with decades of ache, knotted, emblazoned with lashes


that should have healed over ages ago. proof that they’ve had it much worse; it’s masochism and an odd notion of pride that keep them reopening. each wound a medal, an example set; each weapon smote, every shield borne out of pain. of course they feel–how can they not. they cannot lay on their backs after a day’s work without convulsing.  they actually have the gall to say

–we love you.”

“too weak. add more copper into the mix. try again tomorrow.” so be it. the flawed cast-iron is melted, back into formlessness.


you’re inexorable, stuck in the medieval age.

In middle school, I attempted to capture my immense admiration for this singer-songwriter. I spared no “role model” scrapbook project and no planner cover to do what I had to; the cacophonies of (unencumbered, numbered) words + scary-detailed photo collages were litanies of my adoration for you. I mean, just look at that flow chart down there. (Not to mention this entire category.)

You brightened up the better chunk of my childhood, and still are the undisputed champion of my Most Played list. You may never see this, but I hope you have the best of birthdays. Thanks for the inspiration, Jason Thomas Mraz.

Love, the Professional Clockwatcher.

P.S. Countless references on my blog have been made with your songs in mind.


There will always be certain characters that you can tell have amazing stories. Some of them, like these gentlemen, wear their stories on their sleeves–or on their skin, and with whatever they’re immersed in doing. The puppeteer wasn’t putting up a show, by the way–he was just spending quality time with his friend.

I really want to know your stories, but damn my shyness.

(On a sort-of related note: I miss having an actual camera. My phone can only take so much zooming.)


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