Big Time

Things just change, I guess. Hindi naman pwedeng ganun nang ganun na lang parati. Siyempre, tumatanda tayo, so nagbabago ‘yung mga role natin sa mundo. So nagbabago ‘yung mga priorities, ‘yung mga pangarap, ‘yung mga pangyayari.

In an earlier post, I promoted the Mangaholix Convention ’08. And I said that my friend J and I wouldn’t be able to go because we both had classes that day. I had a Nihongo class in Makati, and she had review classes in UST for her impending Board Exam. But as it turns out, she was able to go. She got there at 7PM, and the convention was almost ending, but she still paid the Php100 entrance fee. I told her that if she talked to the organizers, she may have been able to get in for free (Note: Some of the organizers are our friends from high school), but she said she didn’t want the hassle, and that she wanted to go anyway, “Even if alam kong lugi ako,” she said.

If only she’d told me sooner that she was going, then I probably would’ve gone as well. Of course, I wasn’t able to because other than my Japanese class, I also had to work that day (I’m talking about last Saturday, May 31, by the way). It’s not because our company’s a slave driver, the overtime is really due to my own irresponsibility. Ayoko nang mag-elaborate dahil baka kung ano pa ang masabi ko. So I’ll just stick to the topic. The Mangaholix Convention. Right. So, I wasn’t able to go, but from the looks of the pictures posted in my friends’ Multiply pages, and from J’s story, I’d say it was a lot of fun. But other than that, it looked like a really big thing, nearly as big as the Hero Channel Convention (perhaps because the venues were the same?), and that was organized by a big TV Network.

I guess because we started so small, that’s why it’s hard for me to believe that my friends have gone this far, to actually being hosts and organizers of a big event, getting famous bands (like Urbandub and Kala) to perform, and famous celebrities as their hosts (I don’t know who the host this year is, but last year it was the model, Sabrina Asano). Did I ever think that our after-school hangouts at Carl’s Jr. in ATC would get them to where they are now? Not even when they began to hold weekly art workshops in Ortigas did I ever think that they’d ever be able to get this “big time”. Maybe others think they’ve “sold out” (it’s usually the case in the art world, right?), especially since their material is more inclined to cater to the mainstream, rather than the serious artists (I say this because they have a lot of articles featuring mainstream stuff that I think are more for publicity rather than the “art” value, but of course I could be wrong), but I admire them for sticking to what they like to do, and making it this far anyway. I don’t think they ever compromised their integrity as artists anyway. Even if they have a lot of “publicity stunts”, the art they produce is still very good art. Although personally, I would’ve been happy even if they just published at an indie-comic level and people got to know them from that. I’m a fan of those “underdog” stories, after all. But again, this isn’t about that. What am I talking about, really?

I guess I just feel weird, because I wasn’t able to attend the convention. I haven’t attended one in a long time (It’s been exactly half a year, today, that I haven’t gone to one.) you see, and I kind of missed it. J said she had a lot of fun because she saw a lot of old friends and acquaintances, and she felt like she really belonged. Although we’re really close friends, she really knows more people than I do, mainly because 1) She played Ragnarok and so has an entire “guild” of friends, and 2) She’s really a lot friendlier/sociable than I am. There was a time when I did feel like that, like in the Mangaholix Convention last year. I didn’t have a Staff ID (don’t ask me why), but hung around the Mangaholix booth. One volunteer (I don’t know who, he must’ve been new), called my attention and told me that only volunteers were allowed inside the booth. I raised an eyebrow and the friend I’d been talking to at the time said to him that I was with him, so it was okay. Before the other guy could react, other staff members of Mangaholix showed up and they all greeted me by my name, thereby proving that I really was friends with them, and therefore it was okay for me to be there. I wasn’t just some random convention-goer, trying to get access to something I shouldn’t have access to. It actually upset me when he told me what he did, because he looked like he was asking me to leave. Hmph. Didn’t he know who I was? (Obviously not. Well, I’m not that popular anyway, and I didn’t have an ID, so yeah, it was an honest mistake, but I’m a brat. Haha.)

Well, it seems like I’m just rambling on and on without a point. I guess what I really want to say is that I feel bad that I wasn’t able to to go the convention, but at the same time, for some reason, I do feel sort of like, I don’t belong to that world, at least, not anymore. I don’t think I’ve “grown out of it”, because I don’t think I’ve grown at all, and it’s not like I’m no longer interested in anime and comics and toys and games. I still am, but somehow… maybe… I was content with just sitting on the sidelines, watching the cosplayers, and just going around the convention having fun. I don’t think I’d have any fun if I had responsibilities (like if I were an usher or a cosplay judge (not that I’d ever be one.)). I never really want to make it to the big time, after all. But I am real happy for my friends that they’ve achieved their goals (or at least one of them).

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