That word gives me the prickles. Aren’t they the ones with faded clothes, scruffy hair, black-rimmed eyes (due to lack of sleep or….gasp! eyeliner), yet look effortlessly cool? Aren’t they the ones who have pot sessions and whirlwind romances? Aren’t they the ones who didn’t do so well at school, don’t so so well at work, yet go through life with their genius and charisma? Aren’t they the brooding types? Aren’t they the ones who live in (self-imposed, self-made or self-imagined) poverty? Aren’t they the ones who pursue and are consumed by their passion (for whatever fancy they may take)?
I am none of those things. I have no eye for design or fashion (although my brothers, artists both, will say that they’re anti-fashion, but whatever). I am so straight-laced that people laugh at my dorkiness. I did well in school and I do well at work. I’m not exactly likeable; I only have handful of friends. I cannot be passionate about anything. I am a capitalist-minded, conservative conformist who loves money.
I can’t draw. I can’t paint. I can’t dance. I like reading but I am not well-read. I’ve heard of, but have not read, Nicholas Sparks, Neil Gaiman, JK Rowling, etc. I love music but I don’t know the history of blues, jazz or rock music. I sing, but I’m a terrible performer. I like looking at paintings but I don’t know what they mean.
And then my boyfriend calls me a Toreador (a fancy-pants Moronic-Byronic wimpy Anne Rice type)… i.e an artist. I was taken aback. The nerve !
He explained that, to him, that an artist is simply someone who needs to express herself so bad that if they don’t they’ll explode. I’m not exactly the exploding type.
Is it because I blogged about Angono? Is it because I blog (with a severe case of oligo-blogia)? There’s nothing artsy about blogging. The crassest people can be found on the blogosphere.
I was a writer in high school. But everyone knows you can’t stay in high school.
My friends and teachers from high school tell me they’re surprised that i took the corporate track. They expected me to be a bohemian, an artist, an activist. Just because I wrote news in the schoolpaper.
The truth is, I knew I would have never been successful in that path. And they knew it.
I can’t write anything of my own. I had to have someone tell me “Please do an article on the newly elected student council. Leave it on my desk by Friday.”
None of “Omigosh your love requiem was so hardcore it made me cry blood! and I’ve never liked poetry before!” I wasn’t “Such an insightful editorial I wanna march into the Senate with you now!” I was just OK. Good, but not great.
I was old reliable. And I still am.
Maarte lang ako. Hindi ako artist.