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HONORING MY MOTHER | Ways to go before I slip

I HAVE long held a deep fascination for year-enders. You know, it’s that unique format of news reporting wherein all the significant events that has transpired in a year are bundled up into one flowing diorama-like presentation. As I remember way back in the 80s, I always looked forward to Time-Life magazine whenever they came up with their special December issue which highlighted all the memorable world events in the year that was. As one would expect, the issue was cleverly-captioned LIFE IN PICTURES and not only did it showcase a rich collection of beautiful and poignant photos taken by award-winning photographers, these were accompanied by beautifully-written cover stories as well. Because of this vivid presentation of the year that was, I was instantly drawn to collect them year after year. As there was still no internet then, this small compilation slowly grew to become a special trove which I took out, from time to time, like a favorite comic book.

Little did I realize that later on, my growing fascination for year-ends would almost become like a mindset. I noted that during every end of the year, I would automatically be playing back all that had happened and then organizing them in my mind, ala the Time-Life special issues. Not to get it wrong, it was only later when I realized, this means of harmless fantasizing had actually been like a learning process for me in order to be familiar with subject presentation and styles of writing by those geniuses at Time. (May this also be a shoutout to Fr. Rooney who in high school taught also us, imitation is one of the basic forms of composition and writing.)

Aside from the magazine, I was also constantly on the lookout for other year-ender reports on TV, aware that these evening specials were only aired once at specific hours. Then, during the early 90s,when I discovered a copy in our family library, I requested my mom, who was still with Philippine Information Agency, if they still had those discarded compact discs from CNN that featured their yearly closers. Like Time-Life, these were also rich in stories in videos and pictures. I was able to get two more. In so many ways, this craving for anything about year-end reports has become a personal closure of sorts to the just-concluded past. One question I usually played with in my mind, what was I doing during these times?

Incidentally, here we are again, approaching another year-end. Like Christmas stockings, what have you included in your own collection? Surely, nobody can refute, what a year this was. If we were even to include, as in a package deal, years 2020 up till 2022, their three-piece CD presentation would probably be in everyone’s personal collection. Presumably, all one has to do now is rearrange everything that’s been written in our personal version of the wall of 2020 and its two predecessors and voila! 

My Tolkien LOTR collection would surely pale in comparison.



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