Contributed by: Mendy Grace
“This is not a test.
This is your emergency broadcast system announcing the commencement of the Annual Employee Purge sanctioned by your COMPANY.
Commencing at the siren, any and all work, including non-payment of OT, finishing 1 week work into 1 day, will be legal for 12 continuous hours.
Taking a break not more than 1 hour and eating on your workstation have been authorized during the Purge. Taking more than one break is restricted.
OT Foods will not be provided until tomorrow morning until 7 a.m., when The Employee Purge concludes.
And for the first time since its inception, no rank and file employees has been granted special immunity for the Purge. No personal emergency will be exempt.
Blessed be our New Founding Fathers and Philippines, a nation reborn.
May God be with you all.”
— Purge Emergency Broadcast System
It was one mundane weekend afternoon at home, a time of the day where I’d usually rush in front our TV and watch my mom set up the VHS player whilst Uncle was preparing the table for lunch. Gazing intently at the blue screen, I read the title say, “Child’s Play”, a movie about a dead, psychopath serial killer who viciously murders people (which I didn’t know at that moment) by possessing a good-guy doll called Chucky, and while being kept by a six-year old kid named Andy. And of course, being the gullible seven-year old kid that I was, I almost believed in my Uncle when he wryly told me that even kids were allowed to watch that movie. Mom on the other hand, being the typical protective mom that she was, warned me that it was rather a horror movie not suited for kids. I listened to my uncle instead. I watched the movie until the end, got mentally feeble for a while, and deeply regretted finishing it. It was horrible having to grow up and play with my dolls at that age. Since then, I desperately wished I could just dispose and throw them away without Mom minding, but I also dreaded they would come back at our house and silently slaughter me during my sleep, just like how Andy attempted to scorch Chucky to ashes on part 1 and how it kept haunting him on the next movie series. I was afraid I’d share the same fate with Andy. But on top of all his ruthless killing, I was afraid he would kill my mom, my dad, my uncle, my cousins, and my entire family. I trembled. Tears welled into my eyes while imagining such things happening to me. I was terrified I’d be left alone, defenseless and helpless, let alone continuously live with a vicious doll that I’d actually rather die than accept the latter.
Second instance, there was this famous horror story you could hear from the students chattering along the school hallway. It was about a group of Satan-worshiping cults wearing black, hooded-cloaks, rumored to knock on your gate or door and take the life of whoever owns the slippers left on the doormat. After hearing all those dramatic narration and psychobabble, I rushed at home after dismissal and immediately secured all of the slippers inside a washing machine (That’s right. I did not just hide my slippers. I hid ALL of them, which again included my mom’s, uncle’s and cousins’ slippers.) Mom caught me in the act, possibly perplexed and agitated why in the world I would do that. “What an oddball, I don’t remember being taught in school that slippers should stay inside the washing machine. Go back inside and change clothes!” she berated me. Of course, I got more anxious realizing that I failed my mission. If mom only understood my intention to save the entire family, I would have stood a chance. But I didn’t. That night, slippers stayed outside the house, on our doormat, and I was left reciting my guardian angel prayer before I attempted to sleep safe and sound.
It took me a while to realize all this time, how the fear of losing my family would incite a stronger fear towards these paranormal entities. I could be scared of Sadako, Kayako, Annabelle, Freddie Krueger, Slenderman, or even Jason Voorhees for a period of time and let them scar my childhood. But that same fear that heightens when I imagine these nasty things taking my loved ones away from me, will cause real misery and emptiness inside me. I’m glad I have a different insight today. I’m 24-years old now, strongly convinced that the grownup world is much, much scarier and more powerful than all movie horror villains combined. While they can make you paranoid for a while, grownup world is more ruthless. It could list many things that can possibly be taken away from you aside from your childhood, your family, your friends, and your life, and here’s why.
“Boss: I’ll let you choose between termination and forced resignation.”
Imagine yourself messing up your current job for reasons (breakup, change of heart, mixed up priorities, indolence etc.). Imagine yourself screwing up the deadlines, getting the projects halfheartedly done, being rude towards interns, or being late for appointments, or basically, ruining your company image. How would you feel being seen as incompetent and unprofessional? How would you feel about the entire team rushing towards the deadline because you delayed a single paperwork? How would you feel seeing your supervisor, who used to root for you, now disappointed with your inconsistencies? How would you feel losing your credibility and be rather seen as a second-rate employee? How would you feel about your colleagues, who used to entrust you with major tasks, now hesitant to even ask of your insights about the project? How does it feel having those mistakes pile up to a fault that you won’t be able to redeem yourself? How does it feel to be deemed useless by your company? How does it feel failing this job of yours? How would you feel if the only option it gives you is through forced resignation? How would you feel if your boss unceremoniously yelled at you while he’s stating these lines, “Please. Ayusin mo ang trabaho mo kung ayaw mong mawalan ng trabaho.”
“ATM: Transaction cannot be completed because of insufficient funds.”
Imagine yourself being jobless at this point. How does it feel to be incapable of sufficing for your basic needs, for paying the rent and bills or collecting backup supplies? How does it feel confining your leisure activities and small pleasures in life? How does it feel to deplete your bank account and savings to nought? To not be able to get up shortly? How does it feel to have your list of long-term goals come to a screeching halt? To not be able to continue your monthly dues? To watch your loved ones get sick and you can’t do something about their deteriorating health? How much will it crush you to realize that you can’t be bankrupt because you’re the breadwinner? How much time is left for you to brood over your financial crisis? To be financially crippled? How desperate can you get that you’d have to end up selling your properties, assets and whatnot and still get sunk by debt? To be homeless and watch your loved ones starve to death? How worse could this ending get? How would you feel asking this to yourself? – “Kung nagipon sana ako at nabasa ko ang blog ni wwid.co hindi ito mangyayari.” Haha XD
“You: Tinatamad ako pumasok.”
Let’s say you’re not losing your job right now, but you know you should be doing something else. How does it feel spending all of your time and resources to a job you do not truly want? How does it feel going to office everyday like a soul-deprived employee who keeps second-guessing his cubicle job? How does it feel to not figure out your true purpose in life? How does it feel to gradually lose your passion? How does it feel wasting time, chances, and opportunities? How does it feel halting your true potentials? To stop committing and go back to chapter 1, a.k.a start messing up your job? How does it feel to not be able to get back up? How does it feel to be stuck in this loop?
I’d honestly go crazy and lose my sanity having to place myself in those scenarios. These are the real horrors. These will take away your loved ones. These will kill your passion and sense of commitment. These will gradually steal your blessings in life and stop you from succeeding. Now I understand why mom finds my childish horror stories rubbish. I could see she had a different story in mind, which in this case, could be me not finishing a college degree and be financially hard-pressed and dependent on my 20s. I now understand why some people would find it difficult to leave their safe zone in fear of swooping towards the grownup world.
Go forth and enjoy this season. There’s a good reason why kids are more gullible than grownups, and you’re probably aware of that by now, fellow young adult. Scare the kids they can’t have candies if they don’t save and not by a mumu under their bed. Awooooo! ~