Sunday, May 25, 2003

Erratum: (see Band and On the Run - Looking for Joe posted 16 May 2003)

Where's Joe's female member is named Sharmaine and not Kathleen as reported earlier. My apologies.



In my earliest blog entries, I mentioned that I had no definite reason (execpting my own self-importance) for keeping a blog, and that I'd let you know if I found one. Turns out I have.

When I sent an article to the Youngblood section of the Philippine Daily Inquirer last, oh so many months ago, I was more than miffed that my work did not see print. Some of my friends --up and coming literary titans in their own right, but nowhere near my level of ...competence-- had gotten themselves published in that vehicle. Deciding I bloody hell needed to remedy that situation, I took a good long look at myself, and saw that I had (since Culture Crash) not really been writing. Really writing.

Dex Lira, internationally published and almost-awarded poet can't even break into the local paper. How ironic. How appropriately Dexter Lira Cursed.

I knew that practice and persistence were the only means available of beating that aspect of the curse. But until the Bodega blog, there was no immediate, easily accessible and psychically rewarding method of forcing myself to oil the ol' brain cogs and writewritewrite. provided writing incentives in the form of prizes and very encouraging (sigh) form letters, but the writing needed to get into broadsheet commentary was not the same writing needed to churn out respectable poetry in decent quantities. I hadn't even done that much in months!

I also needed a locus in which I could periodically look at the trends and thoughts defining and influencing the evolution of my writing style (was it evolving in the first place? or was I officially a stagnant hack?). I needed a place to be able to switch between the "write-because-you're-interested" and "write-because-it's-assigned" writer's mindsets.

Turns out the blog was ideal for what I had in mind. It forced me to think of new stuff to write about on a more-or-less regular basis. I'd be able to write about the things I knew. I was also forced to really plan what I'd put on the page...

I even type faster now. Yay. Go me.

I owe Ian another one for getting me hooked into this blog business.

Dex Words for the Week

Bodega A Spanish term, according to the American Heritage Dictionary, Fourth Edition. A noun derived from the Latin apotheca, meaning, "storehouse". Two meanings-- 1. A small grocery store, sometimes combined with a wineshop, in certain Hispanic communities. 2. A warehouse for the storage of wine. In the Philippines, it just means-- 1."storehouse;" 2. "sweatshop, front, bogus address, drug factory" or any place you can cram unsavory things in; 3. That sleazy place in Cubao (or was it in Pasay City?) I keep meaning to go to but can't seem to have the time for.

The word "apotheca" also spawned "Boutique" and "Bodthegue" ("workshop"-- like the one il maestro da Vinci mucked about in. I hope I got the spelling right) which I believe is the direct ancestor to "Bodega."

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