I am a self-denial romantic. I’d bashed anyone’s head who would say that I am a hopeless romantic. The only head I’d be bashing today is mine because, there is no denying it, I turn gooey and sappy when my heart flutters. I am five steps away to the land of the uncool.

The thing is I am a selective, hopeless romantic. I don’t melt in every puddle of sweetness and cuteness. There are exceptions. One, I don’t cry at weddings. I almost snicker behind the bride although I am, suspiciously, always attending weddings for the past two years. It is a bit unnerving. I am not a hundred percent (just ninety eight point fifty four percent) scared of losing my independence and reliance to a man. What I am terrified of is the wedding itself. GAH! The stampede of relatives, the cost of the dress, the shoes, the entourage’s outfit, the reception, the food, the cooperation of the weather… It is just sheer horror! I cannot go through that. Of course, there’s always the sparkling possibility of eloping. Less cost of almost everything may make my eyes sparkle but what about the aftermath? Not the wedding’s aftermath but the marriage itself. The upkeep of a house, the bills, the kids, the almost obligatory daily conversation with your husband, the shared bedroom… Oh yeah, I’m scared alright. I’m not totally against marriage. My own parents are about to celebrate their 32nd wedding anniversary. There is an almost zero incident of annulment, divorce, separation (pick your poison) from the family. I have very good examples. Marriage is good. Marriage is great… for other people but not for me. Different folks, different strokes sort of thing is kind of my philosophy.

It’s just not for me. I would drive the man crazy which leads me to number two. It’s not driving the man crazy or driving or crazy. It’s the man. I don’t have a man (Go ahead, snicker!) and finding one is not on my immediate and future plans. There is one or two or maybe three, possibly four, I am eyeing as potential DNA donors but unless I look like an impossibly sexy goddess blessed with bee bitten lips, photo shopped body, immaculate heart, clever monkey brain, a dazzling career and a money tree, I can only resort to my saved photos and run my fingers on the flat screen memorizing every contour of his face, his neck, his chest, his stomach trail and it stops there. Unless he’s a porn star (which my potentials are not), I can leave the rest to my over active imagination. So, yeah, no man sighting is number two.

Now we’ve come that part. The secret, now not-so secret, things that make me “Oh snap! I am such a girl!” and then I feel this almost feverish tingle on the tip of my fingers and toes, that diarrhea-like-churning-I-must-not-fart-with-happiness in my belly, that warm glow (There is no other way to describe it. It is warm and it glows…in the dark) and that curious sting in the eye. Here’s the list (How are you interested with this? No? Well, I guess my dog’s reading this anyway.) of stuff that might, just one day might, make you ask why I’m running away from a crowd to lock myself in the bathroom so I could melt in private.

1. Japan


This is harder to explain than I originally thought. How does one country make one girl giggle? Really! A country? Japan? This is really difficult to put into words. I have an unexplainable affection, an emotional connection, for Japan. I am Asian with Filipino-Chinese-Spanish roots. I am a big fan of Asian entertainment, South Korea, Japan, and Taiwan to be specific, for more than a decade now. I have a favorite Japanese actor, a Japanese band, a Japanese movie and a Japanese drama, all of which may be used to justify this feeling but they’re not. Before I even discovered the sweet, guilty pleasure of Asian show business, I just have this really soft spot for Japan. I know they invaded our country before and that they have these really scary triads and ghastly films but still, I was unable to stop the surge of affection for a country I have never been to. I don’t even have a Japanese friend. I have an imaginary Japanese boyfriend though, I hope that counts. When I was in 4th grade, the teacher wanted to dress me up as a Chinese girl for the United Nations Day because of my ancestry and probably because I looked like one. I asked to be a Japanese girl so I could wear the kimono. She said they look the same anyway and still made me the Chinese girl. Inevitably, I was The Chinese Girl until college. I have an unspeakable love for anime for two decades and counting. Anime just… it just gets to me you know. Wow! That was so eloquent of me. And the language… I wonder if this happened to anybody. Whenever I hear somebody speaking in Japanese (Yeah, they could be talking about shit and stuff.), I could almost feel my feet melting on the floor. That harsh, almost angry, stacatto tone is like a melody to my ignorant ears. And yes, it took me two decades to decide to learn the language. No, I am not fluent…yet. I could not understand… yet. But I will get there my friend. Yes, I will. When tsunami hit the country almost four years ago, I cried. I know a lot of people around the world cried but I cried, in secret, with total agony like I just lost my home. It was so heartbreaking. I can still feel the pain. This country, with all its national quirks, makes my kokoro flutter for reasons, as of now, I am still unclear. Though in my heart, I do believe that in my past life I was a geisha.

  1. This song- My Sweet Baby by One OK Rock 

Yes, this might be connected to number one. It’s a song by the Japanese alternative rock band One OK Rock and yes, they’re my favorite band. I died a thousand times when I very, very, very reluctantly said no to my friend who went on an Asian trip to see them perform live. Economy is down so it’s a very good reason. This song is not my favorite One OK Rock song but this song makes me sigh. It’s the kind of sigh that’s from the soul, gripped tight, squished and released. There is sweet pain whenever I hear this song. I always said that this song could be THE apology song. It feels like an apology for every sweet flaw and I use sweet a lot in this paragraph. Before I read the lyrics’ translation, the melody of this song feels raw and real to me. Oh boy! I haven’t mentioned Taka’s voice yet. Morita Takahiro, or Taka, is the band’s vocals. I don’t care about anybody’s opinion but his voice is pure eargasm. I would marry that voice if I could. Right, back to the song. My Sweet Baby’s lyrics, at least its English parts, are all so typical, clichéd cute, sweet words but why oh why does it melt my heart every single time? It’s another unexplainable phenomenon or I’m just a terribly unoriginal, boring, normal romantic.

  1. Nora Roberts and her men


Nora Roberts is another guilty pleasure. My favorite book genre is somewhere between crime thriller and horror but Nora Roberts has a very special place in my heart. The plots are admittedly typical. However, the characters she creates are so endearing, funny, dreamy and altogether impossible. Especially the men, they are so relatable yet so unreachable. I cannot count the times I wished the men would jump out of the pages so they could curse at me and kiss me at the same time. The butterflies come when these impossible men would take love *cough* in stride. There are a number of nights I would curl at the edge of the bed reading, discreetly wiping tears and voicelessly moving my lips trying to imagine the voice behind the words. I am a sucker. And this is another reason why marriage is a little impossible for me. I could never find the right Nora Roberts man for me. Never.

  1. Animated Kisses (Disney and Anime)


Kisses. Yum. Animated Kisses? Downright gut-wrenching, heart squeezing, melt in a puddle, toe curling, deliciousness. There is just something about “drawn” kisses that hits me so bad. I just can’t explain it. I watch shoujo anime and every single time there is a kiss, and usually it’s just these little mesh of animated lips, I squeal. I just squeal with delight and anger. The anger comes from the explanation that this is not happening to me. Disney kisses hit me hard too. When Demetri FINALLY allowed himself to kiss Anastasia on the boat, I died. There is no Demetri in my life, how is this worth living? (But there’s food, so there is that. I love food.) Then Eugene or Flynn wakes up from death after being saved by Rapunzel’s tears, he reavels his thing for brunettes and voila! That kiss again that never happens to me. The closest I get to this is a kiss from my dog. Not bad.

5. Really bad and funny poems/speeches

Remember Ryan Atwood’s “poem” in The O.C. Season 4 for Taylor in the bookstore? “Seven four seven seems too tight…Please stay because someday I might.” Oh God! Why can’t somebody do that me? No matter how ridiculous the words can be, I’d really appreciate it if somebody wrote something special to me or basically anything that somebody would do just for me. Some days I just stare at the mirror and wonder why my face could never inspire anybody to write something. It must be the body that’s destroying the inspiration. Anyway, words desperately pulled out from nowhere just to make you stay… may make you stay.

6. Hugs


This is pretty simple. Hugs are warm. Hugs give love. Hugs are therapeutic. Hugs make everything better. I love hugs.

  1. Armpits


May I just specify that I am referring to real men, really cute men, with real man armpits. Armpits that are not shaved but still smell unbelievably good. I know they sweat but there’s that man sweat that makes me giggle. Yeah, that doesn’t sound good. This is another difficult thing to explain. I only found two people in this lifetime that has a thing for armpits like I have. We’re pretty special. When I see a really cute guy dancing or just moving around, I always try to see if the armpits would make me smile. There are only a few who passed this stage. Then there’s that smell. It’s not the disgusting smell you all are thinking about. It’s that mixture smell of good sweat, cologne and altogether captivating man smell. So far, I have only cuddled and sniffed, to his unheard protests, one guy’s armpits and boy! He smelled good. He smelled really good and I have a yearning to repeat it to another attractive male if this lifetime permits it. Attractive armpits equals a happy girl. Yes, armpits make me a romantic. The worst there is.


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