Friday, September 24, 2010

Old Entry #4: Catch-22’s of the Dorm

It's past noon.  Yes, I'm done eating, but no, I haven't left yet.  I kind of said I would leave after breakfast and now it's about time for lunch and I'm still sitting in front of my notebook.  So I figured, "why not post another old entry?"  I need to, too.  You probably realize why by now.

WARNING: What you are about to read beyond the line below is full of profanity.  I was 18 and angry, so please forgive me.

Yeah, my old entry post today is amazingly full of profane expressions.  It's a condensed essay about my sentiments regarding my college dormitory way back in my freshie year at Silliman University.  Today, they call it Vernon Hall.  Back in my days, we just used to refer to the structure as "New Men's Dorm".  It was supposed to be the best men's dorm on campus.  I don't know what they were thinking boasting it that way.

So, yeah, here it is.  It's pretty long!

This was originally posted on Aug 18, '07 11:37 PM on


 The day before I left for college, I was all keyed up and ecstatic about it—first and foremost of what it would feel like living with two complete strangers in a dormitory miles away from home.  [“Gosh! Tomorrow’s the day my freedom begins!” I thought to myself.]  I double-checked my luggage (which I had finished packing three days prior), texted everyone my hasta la vistas, met with my then ex-girlfriend (who is now my girlfriend again) to hug and say goodbye, and had dinner with my dad at a posh bistro.  After that, all there was left to do was to wait for the next day to come.

Then, like a zap of lightning, it finally came.  After getting dressed and bidding my grandma and grandpa farewell, off we went—to the terminal and then finally onboard Oceanjet 2.  When the vessel started to move, I cried (of course, I now realize that was really, really stupid of me).  I sat there for two hours thinking of the people I was leaving, the people who were going to be missing me, and thinking of what would possibly be in store for me (of which, at that time, I hadn’t the slightest idea).  And then, the doors opened.  Getting down the ramp was a completely different feeling from those other days when I did.  I thought to myself, “I am now about to step into the land that will be my home for the next four years.”

Getting down, we were met by around more than ten people who offered us rides and to carry our stuff.  My mom didn’t want to be helped so she tried to shrug them off with her refusal, but they just wouldn’t let us be.  And when a man had attempted to hold my giant bag’s handle, she flared up.  She positioned herself to hand chop him, but, luckily, he made the wise decision of taking his hand off before she could.  And so the story goes.  We took a cab to my dormitory.

Arriving there was of such pure exhilaration.  Of course, I was silent to the others on account that I was a newbie in the place.  I hurried to my room and settled my stuff in.  And I met one of my roommates.  It was he who assigned me my bed, which was the upper deck of his.  Quite difficult for me but thought to myself, “I’m the freshman. He probably underwent the same hitch back then when he was.”  So, I just decided to bear with it.  What choice had I, anyway?  He seemed quite aloof but I thought that was just because we had just met.  [I would only later learn that he isn’t nice at all.]  After which, my mom and I went out for lunch, and then we went shopping for my stuff.  At the end of the day, my mom had checked in at a small guesthouse that called itself a hotel and I went back to the dorm to sleep.  That’s when hell began.  As I was about to sleep, I noticed a certain cracking sound when I knelt on my bed.  I looked down to see if anything was cracking.  And, indeed, something was—the plywood supporting my mattress.  I called my mom to tell her and tell her I couldn’t sleep there that night.  But she had none of it.  [Damn!]  Just the first day and I already started to dislike the place.  And because my mom had told me to report what was wrong with my bed, I did in the morning.  They assured me that it would be replaced the following week but until now (August 16, 2007), it’s still here.  [Fuckin’ crap!]

The next day, after more shopping, my mom went home.  Damn! I was now on my own.  But somehow, I was still optimistic about things in the dorm getting better.  After going out with a friend from home who was also studying there, I went home to the dorm.  It was barely dark.  I was the only one to respond to bed check since both my roommates weren’t around when it happened.  [And that’s been the case ever since].  Right now, as I write this blog, I’m alone in my room my roommates are both not here yet.

Anyway, moving on… Weeks later, I was stuck in the internet café doing research on two term papers due the following day.  It was just 2130 hours when I finished my work so I was confident that I was still going to be back at the dorm on time.  But when I arrived, they told me I was late.  And when I asked the guard why, he told me that the curfew had been moved to 2130 hours.  [Oh, that’s just comforting!]  They’re so hell bent on imposing what’s printed on the contract but they themselves are not even abiding by it.  The contract clearly says “curfew: 10:00pm Sundays through Thursdays and 10:30pm Fridays and Saturdays.”  But they cut it short 30 minutes short.  [FUCK THEM!]  It’s bad enough for me that there’s a curfew.  But 9:30pm?  This is just ridiculous!

Now, let’s talk about devotions.  Devotions are supposed to strengthen our faith in the Lord.  But how in the blue hell called Earth would that happen if we’re being coerced into joining devotions.  They’re once-a-week starting at 9:30pm and ending at 11:00pm—10:30pm being the earliest.  Hello!  That’s my study time.  And when it ends, I’m always too tired to even touch my books.  Every single week, I sacrifice a night of study all for some gratuitous palaver of all-knowing declarative sentences and periphrastic questions.  On some nights, we’re called to the dining hall to discuss about meetings.  Still, with our attendance checked pedantically.  And what for? T-shirts, presentations, and what not.  Well, there’s nothing wrong, at all, with deliberating about those things but why not just leave it to the people who care.  They don’t have to force everyone to join those stupid meetings!  [I really, really abhor this!]  We’re paying for our stay only to be put against our will.

Now, let’s talk about something else.  Let’s talk about the food.  Not that I’m choosy or anything, but this is just plain torture.  They serve us different food each day but they just feed us the same things the next week—just in a different daily order.  I’m really sorry my parents have to pay for most of the meals that I don’t eat but it’s become a teensy bit sickening for me to bear.  I haven’t even started about specifically what they serve yet.  Oh, it’s just awesome!  Let’s start with breakfast.  On some days, we have hotdogs (a single small piece each), sometimes they serve us two slices of either canned luncheon meat or meat loaf, and other times they serve blue scrambled eggs.  [Eeck!]  How the hell do they turn those eggs blue?  It reminds me of the first episode of “Courage the Cowardly Dog” entitled “The Chicken from Outer space” wherein Eustace and Muriel at blue alien eggs laid by an alien duck that turned them both to zombies.  Ugh! I don’t even want to think about it.  [Scary!]  Ok, so much for that, let’s go to lunch and dinner (since they serve us the same food interchangeably).  Well, there are days they serve us beef (the rubbery part), on some days they serve us pork (the bony parts with cartilage), and on some days they serve delicious chicken (with sand-like texture).  My six-year-old cousin could cook better.  [Bah!]

Another thing, the noise here is just intolerable—guitars, drums, and loud unfathomable tracks repeating over and over each single day.  Plus, they do a derby at the lobby on some nights where they yell and shout like they’re in some sort of cockpit or something.  And there was one time when they ran around the hallways, chasing each other with water guns loaded with human piss. [GOD!]

Oh, and there’s more!  There are these upper class punks who walk around calling themselves big brothers.  [FUCK THEM!]  They bother people like block the way down the stairs (one time, this almost caused me to no-show on my departure).  And they come with seemingly imposing presences.  [TO HELL WITH THEM!]

And Oh, I’ve been late a couple of more times.  Twice, I didn’t even sleep here.  I’d be quite happy if the manager tells me I couldn’t stay here anymore.  That would be much more like it.  I mean, I’m really a “night out” person so I often come back late on weekends.  I remember this certain one time I was late.  It was 3am when I came home after drinking with a couple of friends.  After logging in the tardiness record, I knocked at the glass door for them to open it.  I was clearly visible to them but they just sat there.  There were two.  One was on the phone and one was reclining his sagging ass in front the TV set.  I had to get the guard to get one of them to open the door.

For me, real life begins at 10pm on weekends but how can that be for me if I need to be home even before it comes.  It’s like getting killed before even being born.  I liken it to abortion.  [SHIT!]

So, with that, I’ve come to the conclusion that I am definitely moving out next semester.  I can’t live like this!  It’s bad enough not being able to come home anytime you wish, but not having a kitchen is just HELL!  I’m a chef.  The kitchen is my haven.

What do you think?  Well, it doesn’t really matter what you think.