Watch Me Entertain Myself!

Sacha Guitry once said, "You can pretend to be serious, but you can't pretend to be witty." Oh yes, I'm the great pretender.
(pilot episode: 20 January 2004)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

At The End Of “Sa Wakas”

At the end of “Sa Wakas,” the new musical featuring the songs of Sugarfree, there was a directorial flourish at the end which (no spoilers here) made the mostly young audience gasp and exclaim, “Ooh!”

Outside, D and a friend were gushing over that particular scene, and I said, without much reflection, “Wow ha, you really fell hard for that? But that’s been done so many times before.” Which prompted D to exclaim, “Well, you’re so old, you’ve seen more plays and movies than us!”

That got me thinking. My friends in high school were the nerdy, geeky ones who listened to Kate Bush aside from Madonna, and obsessed more over Francois Truffaut’s Day For Night than Caddyshack. It was our way of forging an identity that separated us from the jocks whom we despised yet secretly envied. At first I just faked interest in subtitled, obscure films that was more interested in the human condition than blowing things up. But after a while I developed a healthy respect and interest in them (though I still like blow ‘em-up movies once in a while).

Of course, my DVD collection isn’t chock-full of obscure, highfalutin’ foreign films. (To be honest, I like having summer action blockbusters in my collection because I like how they sound in 5.1 Dolby surround sound.) But thanks to my Big Bang Theory friends, I have seen my share of classics films, the kinds that appear in all-time greatest lists. And thanks to my stint working at the CCP (and specifically, in my interest in theater), I have also seen a fair amount of stage productions, from straight plays to musicals to folk theater to what is politely called “performance art.”

Exposure is great, because one gets to appreciate all sorts of art that is out there. But with exposure comes familiarity, and with it, the danger of ennui. Worse, there’s also the danger of an inflated sense of self-importance.

That’s why I am amazed at those who retain their child-like innocence and genuine appreciation and surprise despite extensive exposure. And how does one avoid being a know-it-all?

I realize it all boils down to two things: humility and kindness. Be humble enough to not flaunt one’s knowledge. Be kind enough to appreciate other people’s appreciation.

For so many years I’ve developed my sense of pride and self-worth so that I can be a self-contained unit who is capable of surviving singlehood. But three years into a relationship with D, I am still realizing that what is more important than knowing your self-worth is the maturity to set it aside lest it bloats into self-importance.

Maybe then I can again watch with an innocent heart and an uncluttered mind. And maybe I can still grow to be more patient.

Ang bagong crush namin. You will fall in love with his voice. He actually can out-Ebe Ebe.


artistmonk said...

I love this -- "what is more important than knowing your self-worth is the maturity to set it aside." I enjoy reading your blog. Keep writing. :)

joelmcvie said...

@ARTISTMONK: Thanks to you, I've revised and refined that sentence, hahaha. Thanks again!

domiKnow said...

love it, humility and kindness :) #TRUTH! and yes, Enta-boy has a voice to fall in lvoe with :P