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HONORING MY MOTHER| In the wrong place or time

Inside a coffee shop, a lone woman, apparently waiting for her companion is watching Tiktok videos without earphones at a loud volume, drowning out the piped-in music in the place. In the end, even as she catches sight of a few irritated looks directed her way,  she just shrugs them off with a tiny hint of a smirk. In another instance inside a spa, a man looked at me menacingly because I suggested he turned his phone’s volume down as he watched a rap showdown.

Inside our piece of suburbia, a dog owner leaves their poor pet leashed to a gate post, oblivious to its incessant barking and whining, while they attend to a small business a few block away. On one occasion, you would have thought there had been no one home early evening to hush the noisy one at the gate, until the house lights were all turned off. In still another scenario, a group of young office workers go at it loudly cracking jokes and wildly laughing non-stop inside a filled public transport with nary a care at all, while other passengers, who just appear glad to be homeward after the day’s work, sit quietly as they bear with the ruckus.

Even though there’s a lesson here somewhere, the rule of the day seems to be pay them no mind. It’s not your battle, definitely not your business. Apparently, this stance seems to be the standard procedure in today’s instruction manuals at life. Breaking all these little scenes down, firstly, it is really a little beyond me how some, with what appears to be expensive mobile equipment and tablets, would not be able to afford a simple set of head or ear phones. I remember in the 80s, those quintessential huge boom boxes playing loud tunes and carried on shoulders were evenI frowned upon openly and not allowed in many quarters.

Much like crying babies, barking dogs indicate something is amiss. In the case of dogs, their bark not only alerts us to unwanted presence. For some, this seems to be the only reason why they keep them. Barking can likewise show us their discomfort or ails. If one were a real dog lover, as many people claim, they should then be sensitive to this. More important, because we all share whatever limited space we have, it’s also civil that we become mindful if their pets are being a disturbance to others around them.

In this time when all have become conscious of either being politically correct or gender-aware, the concept of personal space has become more esteemed and respected. However, demanding our own space and rights comes with the added responsibility that all should also be empathic of other people’s personal spaces and rights too. It is never enough to just simply state, “walang basagan ng trip” (much like “don’t burst my bubble”). In the bus, the coffee shop, the spa and even in our streets, we brush through the  personal spaces of others.


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