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Tuesday, January 06, 2004

Six days into the new year and here I am taking stock of what made the past year a real blast. There were a lot and I'm so glad I started blogging near the start of the year, that makes remembering a lot easier:
It was a year of unforgettable movies. Not a lot of them are native to that year but they made their mark there. These includes Radioland Murders, The Three Stooges (Mel Gibson's tribute bio-movie), Dekada '70, X2, The City of Lost Children, Grave of the Fireflies, The Way Home, Treasure Planet, Ang Tanging Ina, Finding Nemo, Alex and Emma, View From the Top, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen , Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days (where I first got a crush on Kate Hudson), Uptown Girls, Matrix Revolutions, Unheimliche Geschichten (the first silent film I saw on the big screen, a foreign one at that), Intolerable Cruelty, Crying Ladies, and Return of the King.

It was a year of great comics. Like Arnold Arre's graphic novel, After Eden, online comic strips like General Protection Fault, Hound's Home, Kevin and Kell, and Pearls Before Swine.

It's also a year for extreme weirdness. Like Stellar Blue ketchup, discovering Linkin Park via their album "Meteora" (and letting my goatee grow like their drummer Rob Bourdon's), having some very detailed dreams including one about musical Spaghetti Westerns and John Goodman being my uncle, my old blog conks out after making some fatal html mistakes. I began to hate Friendster after everyone began trooping to it, had my very first costume party at the New Worlds' Alliance Halloween party.

It was a year of sadness and setbacks. Like the time I lost my Nokia 6210 (but was replaced with my dream phone, a Nokia 3650). An acquaintance took her life (but received salvation before the end), our internet cafe business closed but not before having 3 replacement assistants that bore heavily on me, and I was depressed and lonely the first half of the year.

It was a great year for achievements too. The dormant Artists' Den started meeting again, planned a lot of projects including our first campus tour in UST, an appearance at the Toy Con in Megamall, SWP's Mos Eisley Night and Ayala Town Center Convention, and other gigs thanks to the untiring Az. We got to visit Sydney, Australia for four days. I started a new and better blog which lands in Dean Alfar's and Carlo Vergara's links to mention a few. I also started experimenting with artsy-fartsy pictures and putting them in my phlog. This was also the year that started and finished my comic strip tenure in Fusion Magazine launching two titles in the process: Always Saturday and POParazzi. I also appeared on TV care of abs-cbn's Magandang Umaga Bayan. I also started having some driving lessons again and having my non-pro license.

And it was also a year of greater changes in terms of friendships. Two college friends got married to their long time girlfriends, a high school chum got married and got to spend some more time with them than never before, a high school barkada dropped by in the country after a long time's absence, another became a father, a churchmate finally got married after years of praying, a couple of online friends got married, and got to be part of those who planned our 15th high school graduation reunion. Whew!

This list is by no means complete but they contributed a lot on what made 2003 a blast. Last but definitely not the least is that I've matured a lot in 2003, I'm speaking emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. I had a lot of struggles in the first half of the year with all those changes happening left and right. Struggles with the question of loneliness, dead end occupations, ability to maintain the job I was being called to, and other crummy what-have-yous, not knowing that these would be redeemed in the latter half of the year. I also learned a lot regarding my personal relationship with Jesus enabling me do away with encumbering religiosity and bowing more to His will. Also the once strenuous relationship I had with my dad improved starting in the second half of the year too. It may be good, it may be bad but it what's made me who I am today: more confident, more positive, and a lot more understanding that all things do happen for a reason thereby eliminating all forms of regret permanently. The remaining question now is what am I looking for this year. Well for one I'm looking forward to even greater things to happen in my career as a cartoonist. Things are starting to pick up for the local comic industry and it would be a shame to be left behind. There's the further strenghtening of old ties and putting life into clearer priorities. I have to be clearer on this so's I'd know what to look for.

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