FANHS-tastic Experience

The Filipino American National Historical Society (FANHS) held its biennial conference in New York City this year, under the theme, “A Pin(<3)y State of Mind: Building With Our Roots“. It was my honor to have attended the conference as both a performer and an attendee. Continue reading FANHS-tastic Experience

How To Recover from A “Holly Golightly Complex”

Original painting circa 2010.
Original painting, “Holly Golightly B&W,” circa 2010.

This is your first September as a non-student. It’s as weird as Harry Potter not returning to Hogwarts in The Deathly Hallows. The circumstances are different, but the reality is that you are now facing “the real world”. You have been guided through the necessary steps to be admitted into a higher institution and plan a course for your future. But you were not prepared for the emotions that come with these changes or how to deal with them.

You applied to several schools in Manhattan because you felt that it was your destiny to return to your place of birth. Throughout your life, you watched films set in New York City; read poetry by Frank O’Hara; idolized Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly more than her other roles; and dreamed of that apartment somewhere in Astoria (because Queens) or Harlem (because the Harlem Renaissance). You got accepted into four colleges in Manhattan, and all you had to do was choose one. Continue reading How To Recover from A “Holly Golightly Complex”

The Holly Golightly Complex

Originally written on May 20, 2013. The following text is a revised version of the memoir I wrote for ENGL 300: Intro to Creative Writing. No changes have been made to the text for this post.

The Holly Golightly Complex

I had hoped to be Holly Golightly some day (but as a Filipino version of her). Truman Capote’s literary heroine came to life in the 1960 film, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, starring Audrey Hepburn as the Manhattan socialite, in search of a rich husband and an escape from her rural beginnings as Lulu Mae Barnes. Around Manhattan, one can find Audrey Hepburn’s iconic look—black dress, pearl necklace, tiara up-do, and long cigarette holder—printed on shirts, bags, and posters at souvenir shops. The ubiquity of Holly Golightly’s image in Manhattan is reminiscent of portraits of the Virgin Mary in churches, reminding visitors to keep their faith in what is possible and what may come. Continue reading The Holly Golightly Complex