Whatnot, Writing 101: Class of 2014
Comments 6

My Twelve-Year-Old Library

The Loneliest Book Shelf in the World

It is non-existent. It only has a few fairy tales bought from the supermarket’s school supplies section that could pass as books. Let me race through my dimming memory to fetch all the titles:

  • Aladdin (comics)
  • Bambi (hardbound)
  • Beauty and the Beast (comics)
  • Dinosaurs (not a fairy tale but an informative book about the title, hardbound)
  • Dumbo (hardbound)
  • Oxford World Atlas (hardbound)
  • X-Men Adventures, Volumes 1-3 (comics)

There are other fairy tales but I couldn’t remember them. Seriously, I think I have written a lot about this topic already. I’ve written about it in the past years and in the recent past. If I’m boring you, I’ll just go ahead, stop twisting the Writing 101 challenges, and answer it. It wouldn’t be too personal, I promise.

Tell us about the home where you lived when you were twelve. Which town, city, or country? Was it a house or an apartment? A boarding school or foster home? An airstream or an RV? Who lived there with you?

Today’s twist: pay attention to your sentence lengths and use short, medium, and long sentences as you compose your response about the home you lived in when you were twelve.

When I was twelve, we lived in Balibago, Angeles City. It was the left half of a duplex. I suspect that these were one of the houses that the Americans left when they figured out that Mt. Pinatubo would wreak a record-breaking havoc in 1991. It had three bedrooms, and two toilets and baths. Big yellow ceramic tiles. The living room is too spacious that we managed to have two living rooms side by side, one which we used for visitors and one which we used for TV time with the family, which wasn’t that often because my parents preferred to watch rented VHS tapes in their bedroom and these were often R-rated.

My sisters and I shared one bedroom. There were the occasional cousins who stayed for the summer, and they also stayed in our bedroom. This house was welcome to all cousins. Here’s a list of cousins who lived with us all throughout our stay there:

  • Ate Lai (1992-1997)
  • Kuya Jeff (1992-1994, 1996)
  • Ate Weng (some summers, 1996-1997)
  • Ate Anne (not really a cousin, 1996-1997)
  • JC (some summers)
  • Gia, Mia (one summer)
  • Ate Michelle, Jericho (one summer)
  • Errol, Tyrone (occasional sleepovers)

Ate Lai occupied the third bedroom but it was too spacious for her. So half of it turned into a stock room. My mother said that I was supposed to own that bedroom when I turn thirteen but I that never happened because my parents split when I was thirteen.

I’ll stop right here as promised.



  1. Monique says

    Hmm. Twelve years old. That would make me a 6th grader. I think I’ve already met Oz that time, and my YA Sweet Dreams, but I had no library yet because I didn’t have enough allowance to buy books, and asking my parents didn’t seem like a positive idea. Haha. :)


    • Why not? The idea of a library didn’t really occur to me when I was twelve because there wasn’t an Angeles City book store to inspire me until the mid 2000s.


  2. Did not read much back when I was twelve. Save for a bazillion Archie Comics. I also remember this big, thick collection of fairytales with various short stories of German, Russian, French etc. origin in them that my mom bought from a peddler. My 12 year old self was a cartoon watching, doll and video game playing person.


    • Oh, we were the same type of kid! Yes, including dolls. My sisters’ dolls, hahaha!

      My classmate from Grade 4 had this thick fairy tale book and I was so jealous and pissed because she wouldn’t let us read it. I bet she never read it.


  3. LOL! I remember a friend from my childhood days, he would bring his sister’s Polly Pocket (those pocket-sized plastic doll house thingies) and we would play with it in school. And I clearly remember us doing an X-Men role playing game. And who did he pick to play? Not Cyclops of Gambit or anything like that, but the most powerful, gorgeous, fiery, divaesque Phoenix. Hahaha.

    Now I remember Kill Your Darlings again. The library girl telling Allen that she bets he doesn’t even read. And Allen sort of whispers. “I do” Still obsessed about that film. Haha.


    • Yiiih, if we hang out, one of the things that we should do is watch Kill Your Darlings. Did it ever show here in the Philippines? I doubt.

      I don’t remember who was my character during our role-playing in class. I wasn’t out then yet, haha! But at home, I’d tie a blanket to my wrists and be Storm. XD


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