Plans for November

Posted: September 11, 2006 in All and Sundry

Last year, when we commemorated Naked Lunch’s death anniversary, I was honestly not in the mood to do so but was forced to arranged everything anyway because (1) Carol and the organization needed help (2) I promised his parents and friends I’d lend a hand in organizing the photo exhibit. But what I really wanted that time was to disappear, hibernate, and not show my face ever in those long hours of prayer meetings, masses, and group get-togethers. I told myself, I have gotten sick and tired of thinking and talking about him.

But unfortunately, I didn’t get to hibernate and so ended up helping put up the photo exhibit and preparing the website and writing a long review article of his ouvre (read: photographs he took when he was alive), which took real pains writing for reasons that writing about photographs is difficult especially when you are writing about a dead person’s works. The article got published, of course. People talked, reacted positively and negatively. But I didn’t care. The unrevised version landed in Naked Lunch’s website. During the exhibit opening, I read the piece in front of a crowd of people who also knew him, including one person from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts who later on approached me and encouraged me to write more reviews of photographers’/ photojournalists’ works. I nodded and pretended to agree with her, but at the back of my mind, I knew it is a daunting task. Photographers are the most egotistical people amongst visual artists.

The whole thing went on with me feeling ambivalent and numb.

This year will be his 2nd year death anniversary, this coming November 12, exactly. And people in MindaNews are already thinking of ideas to celebrate his life.

Here are some ideas:

1. I came up with an idea of a chapbook project three nights ago after I realized November is nearing. Inspired by my friends in KL, who are such adventurous people that once they have a brilliant idea like say, the 365 Merdeka epic, they’d go on do it right away, I thought I’d push through with my concept anyway and tell Carol about it.

My idea was to come up with a small chapbook project of poems about sunrise and sunsets as tribute to Naked Lunch. He died shooting the sunset and he always had this love affair with the setting and the rising of the sun, so why not pay tribute to that through poetry. Carol said: “sure.”

2. But Walter had a different idea in mind, which I think is sooo FUN to do, I almost felt my idea was too serious.

A collection of anecdotes about Naked Lunch! And I tell you, there are so many of them because he was such a colorful character. Every person in the media world has their own stories about him. Walter told me that he came up with the concept while he was drinking with media buddies a few nights ago. During that night, they all shared funny anecdotes about Naked Lunch; stories I am not even privy too.

One story struck me the most:

A week before he died, Naked Lunch had a drinking spree with three Davao journalists and during their drunken conversations, they began talking about what makes a “real” journalist or reporter in Mindanao.

Naked Lunch, half-drunk stood up and passionately told them all: “Dili jud ka tinuod nga reporter kung dili ka makaad-to ug Jolo, buhi or patay.” (You are not yet a real reporter if you haven’t covered Jolo, Sulu. Dead or alive, you have to go there.)

A week after, Naked Lunch went to Jolo, Sulu and got shot there.

This is interesting tidbit for me because I’ve never heard this story before. And it says so much, in fact, reveals of the man, we never knew very well to be this passionate about covering Mindanao. At least for me. He was always nonchalant about his job as photojournalist even when we were very emotional about certain events that happened.

It will be 29 anecdotes about Naked Lunch. 29 because he’ll be 29 this year. Just like Walter and me. At the brink of a middle age crisis. *smirk

These are just two ideas. I think more ideas will come pouring in the next months. My guess is that due to “lack of funds” we would just be able to implement a few things. But that’s okay. At least, we get to talk about it. And this time, I’m enthusiastic.

P.S. My dear friends, if you have any suggestions, please feel free to comment.

  1. kaladkarin says:

    claire, 29 rounds of beer, pwede pud. hahaha.

    sometimes i get tired in the same way as you too, but i guess we’ll still be seeing each other huh? =)


  2. reefer says:

    yeeeeeeeees! twenty nine rounds of beer. of course! i’ll buy the first two cases. and this time, i promise i would hold on till the last drop.

    i guess, we’ll be seeing each other indeed.sigh.

  3. JerryWho says:

    pictures of naked people having lunch?

  4. reefer says:

    hahaha. that’s funny. 29 pictures of naked people having lunch! now that’s something. but then again, the board of censors will have a reason to run after us. 😦

  5. jerrywho says:

    but… in the name of art?

  6. reefer says:

    true. in the name of art. *grin

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