Sunday, December 27, 2009

On Leave

First thing, I wanna greet you lovely people a belated Happy Christmas! The bountiful festivities had been overwhelming for me (especially my tummy) that I wasn’t able to respond to your thoughtful greetings. You guys rock.

Now, this post was totally unplanned. I was actually considering lengthening my hiatus up until the turn of the year but I deemed making one last entry to give credits to the year that has been (or at least in a few days time).

You see, this year has been totally AWESOME for me. I cannot point my finger on what made it so; it’s just that every aspect of my life had been simply…awesome. I cannot even remember the negatives that happened to me (save for that recent footbridge incident, but that was almost suppressed in my psyche).

But right now I wanna give some kudos to my new and enduring blogging friends. You know who you are, guys. Thank you for keeping up with this lousy blogger. Till next year!

At this point, let me be one of the first to say, “Happy New Year!”

Saturday, December 12, 2009

How Cholo and Jodi Almost Made Me Cry


LOL.
I have never seen an entire episode of the local adaptation of Stairway To Heaven, not even if I was a semi-regular viewer of the original thing. But since I have this strong fetish for tragic endings (especially on love stories), I bothered to take some time to catch the last few moments of its final episode aired last night.

Tragic endings.

I simply love sad endings as much as happy ones. I scavenge for stories that conclude with goodbyes or better, death. It all started with Jack and Rose, and then amplified hugely by Jamie and Landon. Here comes my emo side. Gah.

Now back to Stairway To Heaven. I actually assumed the ending would verge on being cheesy to trashy, but I was pleasantly surprised that it wasn’t that dreadful. Had Rhian Ramos acted better, I think the ending would be a grand slam. My eyes almost welled up. Just almost.

So I was really getting into Jodi’s death scene (with Jodi bidding goodbye and Cholo telling her to hold on just for a couple more seconds) then the maddening voice of Regine Velasquez suddenly played on the background. Hate that part right there. Worse, a CGI-ed ‘stairway to heaven’ materialized and some glorious rays of sunlight and floating orbs to match. Er, what was that, seriously? I almost felt like a heavenly being would descend to fetch Jodi up, or a sea creature would emerge from the vastness of the sea to strangle Cholo down back to Atlantika.

I cried of laughter.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

On Time

I don’t usually wear a watch as it makes me very uncomfortable. Save for those instances that it was presented to me in gift wrap, I never really had much use of this useful, little contraption. I pretty much rely on my handy dandy phone to keep me updated of the time.

So just imagine my agony yesterday morning when my phone’s battery suddenly went off while I’m waiting for a jeepney to work. Thirty minutes or so of waiting for a PUV with a vacant space was sheer torture, especially if you have no sense of time at all. Add another thirty minutes or so of being stuck in traffic almost took away my sanity. At that point I know I’m going to be late. No, I wasn’t worried about being reprimanded by my superiors. It’s just that I detest not beating the clock.

Filipino Time

I hate being late. Have I said it already? I simply hate it. And I abhor people who are always late. Especially those who are even PROUD of it.

Have you encountered such lowly beings? I sure know a few of them. Setting up a meeting time with those imps would be a futile effort as proven by these instances:

Mr. Punctuality: OK, so we will meet tomorrow at 7 AM. SHARP.

Mr. Tardiness: Alright. But I’ll probably arrive at 8 so don’t expect too much.
OR
Seven? I normally wake up at around that time. But yeah, sure! Seven!
OR
Sure thing! I’ll leave the house tomorrow at 7 AM. SHARP. *grins*

Know what’s irritating in those situations? It’s when those beings cheerfully proclaim to the world that punctuality is not in their dictionary. Like they deserve a medal of valor or something. Like it makes them cute. Fudge you.

No, I’m not being self-righteous here. As stated above, I’m not always Mr. Punctuality, but only on three kinds of situations:

1. I slept too much;
2. I don’t feel like going to my appointment and;
3. Friggin’ traffic jam.
*4. (Bonus) I know I would be dealing with Mr. /Ms. Tardiness (Baaad!)

Please, don’t blame it on Filipino Time. The sustained existence of this habit results from people’s conscious recollection of the deed. There is Filipino Time because people think that there IS Filipino Time. There are tardy people because they think that there WILL be tardy people.

Bato- bato sa langit ang tamaan wag magalit.

Monday, November 23, 2009

On Constipation

This reminds me of an article written by our high school paper’s editor-in-chief. Constipation – not that pesky digestive problem – is when nothing, nada, nil, not even an iota of idea or inspiration would emerge to push you to continue nor even start writing. In other words, writer’s block. For the past few weeks I’ve been straining every neuron in my brain to produce anything, just ANYTHING worth reading. Epic fail. Well, almost.

Is the world running out of interesting things to write about? Am being less observant?

They say one way to counter this problem is to write about it. So that’s exactly what I’m doing now. And it’s helping me, but not fully. I mean, how can I start writing if I am downright uninspired? Or am I just too idle initiate? I don’t know.

Two-Ball

And now for the real thing. Honestly, I have constipation – that pesky digestive problem. Again. Now what really causes this sh*t? It’s seriously giving me a HARD time.

Now I need fiber as much as I need inspiration.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Why I Would Never, Ever Cross A Footbridge Again

It was the last day of my OJT for this week. Thank you very much. I have all the eagerness in the world to go home today so I can have that well-deserved rest for tomorrow’s big day at school. All seemed well during the jeepney ride to Cubao, but for some twisted reason, our effin’ jeepney driver (Bless him) dropped us at the other side of Aurora Blvd, which meant my friend and I had to use one of those acrophobic, wild pink footbridges.

To avoid spattering rainwater on my pants, I cautiously walked my way across the wet, ill-illuminated overpass like a cat walking on a tightrope. I safely got thru. Yey. We immediately flagged down the first jeepney to Marikina that we saw and just when I was about hop on I noticed that my bag’s front pocket was open. Freaking out, I quickly scanned if my ancient phone and mp4 player were still present. Luckily, they were safely sitting there at the bottom. Sigh of relief. So feeling secured already, I groped for my pouch to get my fare. And I groped. And groped again. But the pouch wasn’t there. Aw, fudge. Now I’m dead.

Goodbye 1k. Goodbye memory cards (of my classmates. Ouch). Goodbye, movie tickets. Goodbye, BDO cash card. Good bye National Library card. Goodbye…

I’ve been often told my parents and peers that that particular pocket was not a safe place to put my valuables. But my stubbornness tells me otherwise.

On the positive side, I wasn’t harmed at all. That is something to be really thankful of. If I was robbed face-to-face I might have wet my pants. In addition, I get to follow my tight-fisted budgeting practices once more. It’s been a while since I last saved money, you see. Oh well, that's life.

Moral of the story: Don’t cross the EDSA-Aurora footbridge at night.

Friday, October 30, 2009

When You Live In A Haunted House…

In the spirit of Halloween, kwentuhang nakakatakot muna tayo.

Have you ever had any ghostly experiences? Like have you ever seen one? Feel one perhaps? I’m not afraid to admit that I am a big scaredy cat myself. When I was a kid (sometimes until now), the dark always frightens me. Whenever we have to pass through a dark street or go inside a dim-lit room, I walk as fast as I could or close eyes so tight as if their sealed with epoxy, afraid of whatever I might see – or what might see me – in the absence of light. Ironically, I love everything that is terrifying. I love listening to scary tales, watching horror films, reading ghost stories. I live for those things.

Luckily, I’ve never seen a ghost face to face. But I had a lot of close encounters, if you may call it. And it all happened here, right inside the walls of our house.

I cannot say that our dwelling is truly ‘haunted’. For one thing, it’s relatively new (only a few years older than me) to be one. However, it’s dead quiet most of the time. And as paranormal experts assert, hushed spots are favorite thriving spots of these eerie entities.

One afternoon, I was watching TV in my room with the doors left open. My grandmother, whose room stands adjacent to mine, went out to go to the bathroom at the end of the hallway. After a few minutes, I heard her bedroom door opened once more, and there she was again, walking in the hallway, heading towards the bathroom…

There was also one time when my cousins, my sister and I were sharing ghost stories in my room. I was about to tell a story about my aunt’s room when my sister suddenly butt in and exclaimed, “Ay oo sa kwarto ni Tita! Dati nasa kwarto ako ni kuya, ako lang mag-isa dito sa taas, tapos narinig ko yung monoblock na upuan ni Tita na gumagalaw, parang may humihila!”. That creeped me out big time. It was exactly the same story I’m about to tell them…

And just recently, we celebrated my grandmother’s brother’s 40th day of departure to the living world. A short ‘padasal’ was held in our house but I did not even bother. That very night, I had a terrifying yet sad dream about my dead relatives (at least those whom I know). They were in a hospital, all in their deathbeds, crying, begging me for help…

In between are stories of my dead grandfather turning off the TV that was left turned on, of one of our dead relatives sitting comfortably on the sofa at midnight, of feeling a heavy weight pressed on my shoulders while sleeping, and of the infamous moth flying around our heads every November 1 and 19 (my grandfather’s death anniversary).

The weird thing is, during those moments that I experienced them, I didn’t feel scared like I thought I would be. Maybe because it really takes a while before something sinks in to me. Like my mind is just too slow or too tired to react and tell me, “Hey stupid, that’s a ghost!”

Forgive me guys for sharing this generic topic. You see, I grew up watching Are You Afraid of the Dark? and had always fancied the idea of a group of friends surrounding a bonfire, telling frightening tales to each other.

This is the new Midnight Society. Do you have any tale to share?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Extra Challenge

Busyness is next to haggardness, sabi nga ng kaibigan ko noong high school. Makailang ulit ko na ring nasabi dito sa blog na binabasa mo na sa loob ng ilang buwan ay mamartsa na sa entablado para kunin ang pinaka-mi-mithing diploma ang inyong abang lingkod. Sana lang po. Tiwala naman ako sa sarili ko na makakatapos ako, pero hindi ko lang talaga maiwasang mapraning, mangarag at magpaka-hilong talilong sa mga pinag-ga-gagawa (sana tama ang spelling) ko. Partikular na itong linggong ito. Halos hindi na naramdaman ang presensya ko sa blogosperyo dahil mismong pagtulog na ang isinisingit ko sa iskeydyul ko. Pero hindi naman lahat e paghihirap. Marami-rami rin akong natutunan sa mga nangyari sa akin nitong mga nakaraang araw. Sana lang ay tumimo at kumintal sila sa isipan ko ng mas matagal.

Enrolment

Puro pila, puro pila. Apat ang pila sa cashier. Dun ako humanay sa unang window. Nang mapansin kong mas mabilis ang pag-usad sa katabi kong pila, lakas-looob at garapalan akong umalis at nakisingit sa kaklase ko. Ang problema, ganun din ang ginawa ng iba. Oo nga’t mas mabilis ang kahera namin. Pero mas mabilis ang karma. Dahil pasimple ring nag-lipatan ang mga tao sa linyang siningitan ko, ayun, natubunan din ako. Naunahan pa akong magbayad ng kaklase kong nasa likuran ko sa unang linya.

Moral of the story: Always be faithful.

OJT

Huwebes ang itinakda kong araw ng pagha-hunting ng kumpanyang maaari akong mag-OJT. Miyerkules, iginugol ko ang buong gabi para sa paghahanda sa mga maaaring mangyari kinabukasan. Taimtim kong inaral at isinapuso ang mga dapat at hindi dapat gawin sa interbyu, pati na rin ang mga tanong na posibleng ibato sa akin. Binalak ko ring mag-review kung saka-sakaling biglang may itanong tungkol sa mga napag-aralan ko, pero tinamad ako. Sa kaba at pagod ko ay baka wala ring pumasok sa aking mumunting utak. “I can feel the pressure, it’s getting closer now…” sabi ng Paramore sa isip ko.

Kasama ang dalawa pang kaibigan, una naming pinuntahan kinaumagahan ang isang malaking ospital sa Quezon City (dahil sabi ni Jobstreet). Nangingig na inabot naming ang aming mga resume kay kuyang naka-blue at may braces at saka naghintay na tawagin para sa interbyu. Pero naghintay kami sa wala. Makalipas lang ang ilang minuto ay lumapit siya sa amin sabay sabing, “Kelan niyo pwedeng i-submit yung dalawang 1x1 picture, letter sa school na may pirma ng practicum adviser at X-ray?”

Nagtinginan kaming tatlo. Pasok na tayo? sabi ko sa isip ko. Walang effort.

Moral of the story: Believe in yourself. Wala lang.

Sa darating na Martes ay simula na ng bago kong pakikipag-sapalaran sa magulong mundo ng HR.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Badong Updated

The past two weeks have been totally different for me. And with the current flow of events, it seems that this divergence will continue on for a little while. For instance, I’ve been on idle mode doing blog-hopping or even logging in on Facebook (since some of my close friends are still gravely affected by the flooding that they have no time to go online at all). And add the case of the rotating blackouts in Metro Manila that causes me even more sleepless nights. But apparently, it’s just a phase, so they say. I’m slowly returning to my usual self again. For now, here are some quick updates sa buhay ni Badong:

Blackouts

Yes, not brownouts. One thing that I’ve learned finally is the difference between black out and brownout. I know for a fact that the former refers to total electricity outage (the one Filipinos fondly call ‘brownout’), but I never seem to know the latter’s exact definition. The case is it completely slips out of my mind once electricity recommences and I only remember it once there’s another case of brown, err, blackout. And two straight nights of complete darkness seemed to engrave the task of researching in my cranial region so now I am proud to announce that ignorance is not my best friend.

New Header

I’ve been thinking of changing my header for so long now but my friend Procrastination tells me to do it some other time. And so I didn’t object. So for a while, I let other bloggers think that my blog’s name is Sino Si Badong? rather than Bahay Ni Badong. And I actually received two awards and one nomination under that mistaken blog name. Shame. At least it didn’t make the recognitions invalid.

PBA 3

I shamelessly nominated some of my entries in the Top Ten Posts of the Year category of the third Philippine Blog Awards. Luckily, two of them qualified as finalists.

“To see my name in the lists of nominees alone is a great honor already.” – [put actor’s/actress’ name here.]

It’s actually true, those things you see and hear on TV. Before, I thought it was a tad hypocritical of those people to say that they are totally happy to not win an award. That being nominated alone is a feat to cherish already. Of course, who wouldn’t want some recognition? Who wouldn’t want to bag those trophies, those medals home with them? Are they serious?

And then being put in their own shoes makes me realize that yes, they are serious.

When I saw my posts in the list of finalists I felt sudden surge of euphoria ran thru my spine. My initial reaction was, ‘SERIOUSLY?!’ And it’s also somewhat true that once you see who you’re competing with, you wouldn’t really expect that you could win. Nakakatakot, I said to myself when I read some of the entries. All of them are so well written and some are in fact done by pro-bloggers. But, it would also make me a big hypocrite if I say that I did not hope that I could win. Optimism doesn’t hurt, you know. It attracts positive vibes, too, hehe.

But I did not win. But it’s totally OK. I admit it’s heart-breaking, as I said who wouldn’t want some recognition? But then again, it’s a start. A sign for me to do well, to do better. And it’s not about the recognitions anymore, but a task for self improvement.

By the way, another loads of thanks to Kuya Nebz of Isla de Nebz and Mar of Taympers for telling me that I am one of the finalists. I don’t visit the PBA site that often, you see.

CTRL + S

Amidst the blackouts and the awards, I learned one valuable thing: Always remember to save your work every minute. You’ll never know when MERALCO will cut your electricity.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Surprise Visit

Sigurado ako naranasan niyo ng maligo sa ulan. E ang mag-swimming sa baha? Ako oo! Dalawang beses pa.

Una, noong nasa elementarya pa ako. Ang saya-saya naming mapi-pinsan habang feel na feel naming inaanod kami ng tubig baha. Walang pakialam kesyo may mga lumulutang na mga ipis o kung anu-ano pang mga bagay na produkto ng tiyan ng tao at hayop. Pangalawa, heto at sariwa pa sa alaala ko. At siguradong habang buhay nang tatatak sa aking gunita.

Araw ng Sabado, nagising ako sa tunog ng ulan na walang tigil sa pag-patak sa bubong namin. May bagyo nga pala, sabi ko sa sarili ko. Sumilip ako sa bintana. Lampas talampakan na ang baha! Napangiti ako. Sa buong Marikina kasi, isa ang lugar namin sa mga bihirang bahain.

Pagkatapos mag-ayos at dumiretso ako sa kusina at tinulungan sa pagluluto ang Mama ko. Habang nagpi-prito ng tosino ay aliw na aliw naman akong pinagma-masdan unti-unting pag-akyat ng tubig sa labas.

Mga nasa limang pulagada na siguro ang lalim. Ilang minuto ang lumipas. Nasa binti na ng Tito ko. Ilang minuto pa ang nagdaan. Halos maabot na ang tuhod niya. Ilang sandali lang ay papasok na ang tubig. Hindi rin nagtagal at nangyari na ang kinatatakutan mg Mama ko. Dali-dali naming inangat ang mga gamit sa baba ng bahay, kasama ang washing machine na nakaligtaan naming meron pala kami.

Pero walang mababakas na pag-aalala sa aking mukha. Totoo nyan, naka-ngiti pa ako. Sabi ko nga, bihira lang kasing mangyari ang ganito.

Walang tigil ang pag-ulan. Wala ring tigil ang pagtaas ng tubig. Mabilis. Ilang minuto uli ang lumipas. Hanggang tuhod na ang tubig sa loob ng bahay. Hindi na namin alam kung ano pang pag-angat ng gamit ang gagawin namin. Pinabayaan na lang naming lumutang ang sopa.

Dahil basa na rin, lumabas kami ng bahay. Hanggang hita na ang tubig. Sa galak ay nakuha ko pang kumuha ng mga litrato.

Umakyat na sa bewang ko ang tubig.

Nawalan na ng kuryente.

Nag-patuloy kami sa pag-salba ng mga gamit.

Hanggang tyan ko na ang baha.

Nawala na ang tuwa.

Nanginginig na ang buo kong katawan. Pakiramdam ko lulan ako ng barkong Titanic at pinagma-masdan ang unti-unting paglubog nito.

Nagpasya na akong umakyat. Wala na rin kaming magagawa nung mga panahong iyon. Nakuntento na lang ako sa pagma-masid ng mga kaganapan mula sa terrace. Naaawa kong pinag-masdan ang mga pusang nilalamig sa bubong nga mga kapit-bahay, ang mga batang inililikas ng mga magulang. Isang kapitbahay ang dumaan sa tapat at nag-dala ng masamang balita – meron na raw namatay. Nalunod.

Muli kong binaling ang atensyon sa ulan. Hihinto rin yan maya-maya, sabi ko.

Lumakas ang hangin. Tumaas pa ang baha.

Hanggang sa dumilim. Naalala ko, wala nga pala ang Papa ko. Nandun sa kaibigan niyang nag-iisa at may sakit. Sabi ng Tito ko, hanggang balikat na raw ang tubig sa labas. Wala namang second floor dun sa bahay ng kaibigan ng Papa ko, naisip ko bigla…

Lumalim ang gabi. Hindi ko na alam kung gaano na kalalim ang tubig sa labas. Pumikit ako at nag-dasal. Di nagtagal, naramdaman ko na lang na uminit ang hangin. Tumigil na rin ang ulan. Tahimik akong nag-pasalamat at nahimbing.

Kinabukasan nagising ako sa sinag ng araw na direktang tumatama sa aking mukha. Tapos na. Sumilip ako sa bintana at nasambit ang, “PUTIK!”. Andyan na rin si Papa. Balik na uli ang lahat sa dati – o siya nga ba?

Buong araw kaming nag-ayos at nag-linis ng mga bakas na iniwan ni Ondoy, ang di inaasahang bisita. Bakas ang pagod sa mukha ng bawat isa. Bawat pag-buhos ng tubig at pag-kuskos ng namuong putik may kakambal na buntong-hininga.

Gabi na ng muling bumalik ang kuryente. Agad kong binuksan ang TV at naabutan ang mga balita tungkol sa nakalipas na bagyo. Libu-libo ang na-apektuhan. Hindi iilan ang nasawi. Marami pa ang kailangang tulungan. Muli akong napa-pikit. Sinabi ko sa sarili, maswerte ka pa talaga.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

092389


For almost a month now, I’ve been drowning myself with songs from the 90’s and early 2000’s. Those are the songs that I grew up listening to as a kid. Songs that never fail to give me that poignant, nostalgic sensation that I’ve always loved.

Sigh.

Backstreet Boys, Westlife, M2M, Alanis Morissette, Steps, The Moffatts, Hansons, Joan Osborne, Oasis, Aqua, Switchfoot and a whole lot of them others keep on repeating in my playlist. What the heck happened to them? These dudes and dudettes remind me of the old times when all I have to care about is…now what did I care about when I was a child? TV? Ah, how I miss those days!

It’s really wonderful going back to those memories. Makes you laugh about the silly things you did before. And makes you laugh harder after realizing how sillier you’ve become. Truly, maturity doesn’t correlate to age.

So what’s the story behind the drama? Hmm, nothing really serious. It’s just my birthday. Yeah, I’m twenty. Two-Zero. Bente. I feel ancient.

But mind you, I’m not on Emo mode right now. Not even depressed. Why should I? It’s my friggin’ birthday! I guess I’m just starting to feel more like an adult now, though still not psychologically ripe. I simply feel like I really AM an adult! I feel like I should take charge, be more responsible for my life, not that I am not before. But my excursions to the past prove I’m not ready. Not yet.

Another cause could be the fact that in a few months now I will be – guess I’ve said this before – bidding adios to the portals of my alma mater. Graduation. Before, I’m scared of entering college. But now I don’t think I’m prepared enough to leave it. But that’s how life goes. Everything has to end. But as Semisonic puts it, “Every new beginning comes from some other beginnings end.” Brilliant. I can’t wait for that new beginning.

Alright! So much for the drama. Just want to extend my super thank you to my uber amazing friends who gave me the best surprise ever. You really got me in my most vulnerable. Fudge you guys. You’re the ‘awesomest’ creatures of all! And now time for my birthday cake!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Offline

Now that I’m counting only a couple of months till graduation, it’s not unusual for me to be exposed to a lot of tasks and responsibilities necessary for me to get that friggin’ piece of parchment called ‘diploma’. Stuff like studying for our exams, creating a unique, innovative, marketable product for Consumer Behavior, making a novel-based comic book for that effin’ World Literature, catching cockroaches, mosquitoes and all them disease-causing minute creatures for Microbiology and Parasitology, finding a reputable company where I can have my OJT, and most importantly, accomplishing our thesis which, until now, is only half-way done, and so forth (mind you, my major’s Psychology, though the subjects don’t reflect).

So yes, I’m exposed to a whole lot of stressors. But that was it. I’m only exposed, not really stressed. For I’m not doing everything I have to do to ‘feel the stress’. Some people blame it on my slothful tendencies. But me? I blame it on the Internet.

I know it’s not right, but I’m starting to notice that my whole life’s slowly being taken over by technology, especially the WWW. I feel edgy whenever I fail to go online to blog-hop, or check my Facebook and email accounts, or even get trivial updates on Yahoo! I go online more often than I should perform more essential duties. Internet addiction? Well, I hope I’m not there yet.

So, trying to break the habit, I had a self-imposed Internet-free day. That is one whole day of not clicking Google Chrome on my desktop and doing those things that I’m trying to, wanting to, and should do. And the outcomes were quite satisfying (Note that I got home yesterday at around 6:30 PM):

1. I was able to re-read and re-edit our thesis;
2. I was able to clear out the junkyard that is my room;
3. I was able to read several chapters of the book I’m trying to finish;
4. I was able to edit the uber TH (trying hard) music video I made; and
5. Again, I was able to make a blog entry!

So the attempt was an epic success. I felt thrilled by the thought that I could last a day without the Internet. And by 12:01 AM, I’m back to the online world again.

Monday, September 7, 2009

How Facebook Enhances Self-Esteem

Now allow me talk about this whole new frenzy in the World Wide Web — Facebook. In the beginning, it appeared to be just one of those ubiquitous social networking sites teenagers addictively talk about. But apparently, FB serves more than just finding long lost friends or playing games or answering unbelievably stupid personality quizzes. Moreover, it boosts one’s self-esteem!

Friends For Sale

“I feel self-actualized because of Facebook, specifically with FFS,” says Jake, one of my friends.

One FB application I really don’t grasp the essence of at first is Friends For Sale (FFS). Now the idea is to buy your contacts and make them your ‘pets’. Doing so, it will increase their worth and at the same time, when another person buys your pet, your money will be returned with added bonus. It’s a win-win situation for both the owner and the pet, if you’re going to think of it.

So how does it enhance your self-esteem? you ask.

Take a look at the explanation above. When someone purchases you as his/her pet, your worth increases. So the more you get bought, the more you get a higher value. The more you feel you’re appreciated, accepted by many. The more you feel you’re popular. Sense of belongingness magnified.

I actually know a lot of people (which includes moi, hehe), who impose on others to buy them as a pet. And why not? If it satisfies their self-image. Their virtual self-image.

We live in a virtual world. Some live in a virtual life. Someday we will all be robots.

***

Honestly, I still don’t get FFS. And as of this writing, my worth is $22M. Shameful compared to my $400M friend. So does that mean I’m unpopular? I don’t think so. I’m priceless simply. My real worth cannot be translated to numbers.

Anyone who wants to add this friggin’ bastard on Facebook? It’s orleans.joel@yahoo.com. And oh, I almost forgot. Buy me as your pet.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

A Short Greeting


MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!

Ha! I know it’s just the first day of the ninth month but for us Filipinos, it’s the first signal that Christmas is just around the corner. I’ve written here exactly a year ago about our unique habit of celebrating Christmas right on the very day “Ber” hits our calendars. So, allow me to be one of the first persons to greet you my dearest friends.

I also would want to take this opportunity to apologize to you guys. Been productive lately with tons of school work and Facebook-ing (Vajarl/JCCaduldulan, I know you feel with me. hehe), cutting my precious time posting blog-worthy entries and visiting your wonderful blogs my dear friends. Please bear with me. Also, please pray for yours truly to graduate on time! School’s a extremely fun but it’s so damn suffocating. Good thing there’s Christmas. Whoopee!

Aren’t you guys excited? Don’t ask me because it’s sure obvious. Spread the love!

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire. Jack Frost nipping at your nose…

Monday, August 24, 2009

UPDATED: Four-Point Plan for a Successful Miss Universe Campaign

Ever wonder why Filipinos love beauty pageants? From the smallest barrio to the most prestigious competitions, from girls to guys to the in-betweens, from humans to animals and even lechon, believe me, walang pinalalampas ang Pinoy. However, recent years have shown that our dearest country isn’t having much luck on the most celebrated beauty contest in the world, the Miss Universe Beauty Pageant. So, trying to break the black drought, I propose four simple ways on how to have a successful Miss U campaign:

1. Naturalization of Venezuelans, Puerto Ricans, Brazilians, etc.

Admit it, but the competition has an obvious fetish for Latina beauties. Don't agree? Check Wikipedia. In our case, finding Latina-looking Filipinas could be a great option but when scarcity prevails, let the law take charge. We have a whole lot of Brazilians thriving in our country so make use of them!

2. Mandatory online voting for the Miss Photogenic Award.

One evident sign of the lack of unity in this lovely country is our failure to bag the highly coveted Miss Photogenic award for two consecutive years. That’s TWO CONSECUTIVE years of dearth preceded by a legendary THREE-PEAT. Common guys, make those fingers working! If we couldn’t make it in the top 15, then at least we are assured of a special award. Added exposure is very important.

3. Do it the Miriam way!

Now this goes to the delegate herself. Hold your head up high, toddle on the catwalk as if you’re a ghost floating on air and throw a banana peel you secretly hid behind your sash. Make sure to step on it. Then do the Miriam Quiambao move! See to it that you stand up as graceful as possible and at the end extend your arms to the crowd as if you’re saying “There you go, folks!” Two Miss USAs did it and it proved effective on them so why not give it a try? Audience impact din yon.

4. Use the ever reliable interpreter.

I know we Filipinos are very adept with using the international language, but just for this special event, let's pretend otherwise. For obvious reasons,it will benefit our representative big time. She will have ample time to think and give a very good answer as the question will be posed on her twice. Strategy!

Someday, the Philippines will conquer the universe.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Father or Brother?

[Note: Long, religious post ahead. Hope you read it still.]

“I want to be a priest” I said. My closest friends stared at me in wide-eyed disbelief, eyebrows angled at 90°, and after doing a couple of somersaults, told me encouragingly, “Utot mo!!”

Their reaction did not take me by surprise, really. If you’re someone close to me, you’d know that I am anything but priestly. I only hear the gospel during the first Friday mass at school or during Christmas Eve. I don’t pray the rosary. And I only knew my Bible stories because of Flying House.

But it doesn’t mean that I am a man of little faith. In fact, I am a man with a lot of faith. And my self-imposed recollection in my room last Holy Week just magnified every bit of faith I have in my soul. I realized that God almost always gives me what I pray for. It’s my turn now to give back the glory and serve Him on a higher level.

That’s when the idea of priesthood entered my mind. Only with one big dilemma: I’m not sure if I can live up to a celibate life. I want to have a family of my own, of course.

Now that’s when the idea of converting my religion from Catholicsm to Born Again Christianity came into view. “If I can’t be Father Joel, then better be Brother Joel” I said to myself. And being surrounded by a lot of Christian friends, I somehow have the gist on how it is to be in their group.

I religiously followed Bo Sanchez’s blog, listened to Hillsongs music, and started reading the Bible by heart. For a time, I somehow thought I wanted to be a true Christian.

Then one day, one of my friends told me to read a particular book written by a Christian pastor. Interested, I obliged. I was enjoying reading the first few pages of the book, but for a certain reason, I felt the urge not to continue.

What I don’t like (not that I hate it) about some Christians is they sometimes try to impose on others that what they believe in is right. That the other religions are spreading falsehood among their men. That their OWN interpretation of the Bible is the RIGHT one and should be the one to believe in.

I know I’m not the right person to talk about religion but I can’t help but feel disconcerted. It’s not only an attack to my religion, but a personal attack on me, as well as the other followers of my religion.

Now please, don’t get me wrong, I’m not planning to start World War III here. Kristiyano ka man o Iglesya o kahit pagano, nire-respeto kita. I just want to get my message across: We all believe in ONE God. In the end it’s not about who’s got the better religion because there is NO such thing. This is not about religion. This is about FAITH. And faith is not something you impose on others. It’s something you find for yourself. Something you find IN yourself.

So what now, Father or Brother? I still don’t know. So help me God.

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Oh, My Nose is Bleeds!

Noong unang panahon nagbibiruan kami ng mga kaibigan ko tungkol sa isa naming kaklaseng mali-mali ang grammar pag nag-i-Ingles. Ang lakas ng loob kong sabihin, “Haha! Wrong grammar naman siya!” Biglang sumagot ang isa kong kaibigan at sinabing, “Mali! Dapat grammatically incorrect.” Kabog.

Tayong mga Pilipino, ang lalakas manlibak ng kapwa lalo na sa pagsa-salita ng Ingles. Mamali ka lang ng pronounciation (Hep! Hep! It’s proNUNciation) o kaya ng gamit ng subject-verb agreement para ka ng lumabag sa batas. Kala mo kung sinong kay gagaling.

Meron din akong mga kilala (karamihan mga artista) na ang fluent mag-Taglish, pero kapag pinag-salita mo ng purong Ingles na nagkaka-buhul-buhol na ang mga dila. At kadalasan, sa kanila rin nagmumula ang mga matatalas na komento tungkol sa pagsasalita ng ibang tao.

Tulad nga ng nabasa niyo sa itaas, aminado rin akong gawain ko yun minsan (para kila Marvin at Jericho, please forgive me). Pero hindi, as in, HINDI perpekto ang Ingles ko (kaya nga pinili kong isulat itong entry na to sa Filipino). Sa katunayan, hindi na mawala sakin ang pagiging wrong grammar, este, grammatically incorrect kung minsan. Patunay nyan ay itong mismong blog na binabasa niyo.

Bakit nga ba ganon tayo? Sabagay, second language natin ang Ingles. At minsan na rin tayong naging pinaka-magaling sa paggamit nito. NAGING pinaka-magaling. Noon, kapag may nagtanong ng Ingles, merong sasagot ng purong Ingles din. E ngayon? Kapag may nagtanong ng Ingles, merong nino-nosebleed.

Hindi ko sinulat to para pangaralan ang ibang tao. Sinulat ko to para “sipain sa pwet” ang sarili ko. Ganyan na tayong mag Pinoy e, past time na natin ang manlait ng iba. Pero ang sa akin lang, sinisimulan ko ng baguhin ang ugali kong yon. Sabi nga, tignan mo muna ang sarili mo bago mo punahin ang ibang tao.

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Saturday, August 1, 2009

Goodbye and Thank You

I woke up today with high hopes for this brand new day. It was a little bit gloomy, though, as it has been raining for hours now. I turned on the Internet to check for some updates when I found this very depressing news: Corazon Aquino, Philippines president, dead at 76 (AP).

I stared in front of the monitor in wide-eyed disbelief. Tita Cory, the good, passionate, demure and strong-willed woman who once governed this country has now surrendered to her true master. Then I instantly knew the reason behind the gloomy weather. The heavens must have been mourning for her too.

A lot of public figures have retreated to their final resting place already but none of them had blown such an impact on me than Tita Cory. How could someone be so lovely, so full of heart and so gracious like her be gone? Siguro totoo nga yung kasabihan na “Kapag masamang damo, matagal mamatay”. Tita Cory is far from being one.

I want to keep this post short. And as a final salvo, I want to say, thank you President Corazon Cojuangco Aquino. THANK YOU.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Harry Potter and the Theater Imps

Yes, this is intended to be a Harry Potter post but I decided not going to make a review about it. Let’s just say the movie was superb. Probably six times better than the previous one (Order of the Phoenix; Prizoner of Azkaban remains on top of my list). Instead, I want to tell you about the ‘theater imps’.

They hide themselves inside the cold, dark corners of every movie theater. They are the small, shrill voices you hear in the background that definitely ruin your watching stint. No, they are not ghosts nor are they supernatural beings. They’re completely human and they’re utterly irritating.

They are more likely to show up in novel-based movies. But they could also spread doom in practically any movie, provided they are highly anticipated. They often express their grudge over the distorted story-telling (“Oh, bakit yun na agad?” or “Ganito dapat yung sasabihin niya…!” ) but more often they will spoil the next scene (“Tapos ang mangyayari dyan…” or “Ayan na, ayan na!” ). And like an over-eager Lola Basyang, they will tell the rest of the story to their innocent member and devastate the moment of their neighbors.

Hey, theater imps, do you really think you’re cute? Fine, you loooove the book. You know every inch of the novel by heart. But do you honestly expect the producers to translate it to film word for word? Maybe you misinterpreted the word ‘adapted’ and thought it’s synonymous to ‘verbatim’? Or perhaps you’ve already seen the movie or read the synopsis and reviews beforehand. But do you really have to spoil it? If you couldn’t help your mouth, then please, help it. Fudge you.

So to the hardworking law-makers of this wonderful country, I propose you pass a law regarding illegal chit-chatting inside the theater. ‘Illegal chit-chatting’, to avoid ambiguity, refers to re-telling the story of a novel-based movie and spoiling the next scene in the movie he/she already watched. Law offenders will be required to recite the whole film verbatim. Failure to do so will put them to eternal damnation. What a lovely country this would be!

But then again, we are all guilty.

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Thursday, July 2, 2009

Pieta

Everyday is an exceptional day, isn't it?

This day seemed to be ending in a mediocre fashion already. I was on my way home, riding a Jurassic old jeepney. I was thinking how lackluster this day is when an unexpected sight caught my attention.

In front of me was a mother carrying her sleeping child on her lap. All is looking perfectly normal between them. Then at the drop of a hat, she started weeping silently while gently caressing her child’s forehead. I don’t know who they are. I have no speck of idea what their story is. But that plain and unforeseen sight moved me big time.

For some reason, mothers have always had some special connection to me. I could watch a girl or a child whimper and still be apathetic about it but not with a mother. Laging may kurot sa puso. If it was somebody else I saw my mind would’ve run haywire surmising the reasons for her weeping. But at that moment, no presumptions entered my mind. Just the thought of how powerful and unrestricted the love of a mother to her child is.

So why am I writing this? Mother’s Day is way behind the calendar and there’s still two months to go before my mom’s natal day. But do we really have to wait for a special day to tell our parents and make them feel how we value them?

Everyday is an exceptional day, so don’t waste it.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Bagyo, Baha, Buhol

[Note: Kagabi pa talaga tong post nato kaso dahil sa nawalan kami ng Internet connection, ngayon ko lang siya na-publish.]


Saktong uwian na namin nang parang on cue na bumuhos ang napakalakas na ulan. Dahil atat nang umuwi, lakas-loob naming sinuong ang nangangalit na kalikasan, walang kamalay-malay na may bagyo na pala. Wala pang 5 mminuto at nandyan na ang ka-tandem niyang baha. At kapag nagsama na sila, isa lang ang kalalabasan – trapik.

Magta-tatlong oras na kong nakasakay sa dyip pero malayo pa ko sa dapat kong babaan. Wala naman akong reklamo sa trapik, pero nung nagsimula na kong murahin ng pwet ko, parang bigla kong ginustong maging chairman ng MMDA.

At para naman maibsan ang pagkabagot at para masabi kong worthwhile ang biyahe ko, sari-saring mga bagay na ang nagawa ko:

1. Matulog.

2. Picturan ang mga kasamahan kong tulog.

3. Maki-sing along kay Akon at Cris Brown na pinapatugtog ni Manong Drayber.

4. Gumawa ng mga sentences base sa mg plate number (ex. ILY = ‘I Love You’; UMD = Ur so Maarte, Duh).

5. Wag isiping baka hindi na mapanood ang Boys Over Flowers.

6. Wag isiping naje-jebs na (torture to).

7. Mag-isip kung paano isusulat ang article na to.

Pero sa huli, nauwi rin ako sa paglalakad.*buntong hininga*

So what did I learn today? One word: PATIENCE.

Naalala ko tuloy yung passage na natutunan ko nung high school: “…I asked for patience and God put into situations wherein I have to wait…”

At least ngayon masasabi ko na, patience is finally one of my virtues.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

On Having Mild ADHD

So now I’m diagnosing myself.

No legitimate Psychologist has ever diagnosed me but ever since the term ‘Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder’ (ADD for adults) lodged into my understanding, I hadn’t stopped thinking that I might have the disorder. For one thing, I manifest most of its symptoms, only less prominent. Besides, isn’t it grand to know that you are in the same boat as Albert Einstein, Leonardo Da Vinci, Benjamin Franklin, Michael Phelps, Tom Cruise and all them others who have the same affliction?

Here are just some of the telltale signs of ADHD/ADD and the reasons behind this suspicion. Take note of them; you might have it as well. :

1. Inattention/ Lack of focus
You cannot place me at the back or beside the window of the classroom for I tend to forget that there’s an authority figure in front. Time limits are my worst enemy, ‘coz I have this inclination to shift my attention every 10 minutes or so (guess how long it took me to finish this article). I cannot seem to settle on whether I’ll finish the task I’m doing or watch TV or do another task or do yoga or sketch pictures or play badminton inside my room. I call it multi-tasking, though.

2. Impulsiveness
I am the most unassuming person you’d probably meet. I do unexpected and clearly unprompted acts in the most unexpected situations, e.g., slightly pulling the hair or clothes of whoever’s walking in front of me. Even I do not know why the hell I do that. Giving nasty side comments while someone —whoever that someone is— is voicing out his thoughts or opinions is an equally nasty trait that I have, something that I’m really working on.

3. Difficulty following instructions
This is the part that I hate most: when people think I’m fat-witted whenever I find it hard to follow a certain instruction that has been repeated for several times. For the record, I am far from being stupid. Only on certain occasions, though.

4. Being unorganized and Forgetfulness
My room is close to looking like Ground Zero whenever I’m working on something like a school project or even writing an article for this blog. I also mastered the art of cramming for assignments, minor projects, and even reviewing for short quizzes; things like these, for some reason, easily escape my mind (except for instances that I really feel slothful doing them). I remember buying an organizer once but it didn’t work for long. I always forget that I have it in my bag.

5. Restlessness/ Fidgetiness
If Devon Sawa has Idle Hands, then I have Idle Feet. If my parents have no love for me, they might have amputated me a long time ago. It’s either because I can’t seem to stay firm on one place or I can’t seem to help my feet from doing…things. And seriously, I’m really, really worried that I might have ADHD/ADD…

Paranoid.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Face-Off: Promil Vs Nido

Have you ever wished you were gifted?

Just recently, news spread about this boy who already managed to graduate college at the tender age of 11. Amazing kid, but then I started wondering how his college life went. At 11, I was still playing patintero on the streets and anticipating every Batibot episode on TV, but this kid was already studying about astrophysics and others that I might not even know how to pronounce. Surely his college mates wouldn’t want to play hide-and-seek with him? I just felt that his childhood was taken away by his intelligence.

In addition, we are all aware how these so-called ‘gifted children’ can be exposed to a lot of stress and pressure. They are like magnets that attract the public eye. They are expected to perform well in everything that they do, for their intellect is deemed as ‘faultless’; trivial blunders are enough reasons for derision. Just the mere fact that you are ‘smart’ seems to separate you already from the rest, so what more for them? Ang hirap maging matalino.

Remember the times when there was so much hype on the emergence of these gifted children in the Philippines? Back then I also wanted to be a gifted child myself (at some point I felt that I am, he-he). Modesty aside, I know I am blessed with a good brain and a couple of talents to go with it (simpleng yabang), but I wanted it at a higher level. Yung pang-Promil commercial! But seeing this kid just made me think otherwise.

I remember my 5-year-old self asking my Mom what brand of milk was used to feed me. Without dithering, she replied, “Sorry anak, Nido lang kasi pinainom namin sa’yo.” When she saw the disappointment on my then-innocent face, she quickly retracted and admitted that I was breastfed all the way. But either way, it doesn’t really matter to me now. I am unique and gifted in my own way. Mas maganda yata yung napupuri ka dahil sa natural na talento mo at hindi dahil sa epekto ng gatas na pinainom sa’yo.

Besides, does Promil really work?

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Mga Gawain Sa Dilim

Brown out.

Isa sa mga pinaka-ayaw ko sa lahat ay kapag brown-out. Pinaka-matinding dahilan ay dahil walang kuryente (obvious?), ibig sabihin, hindi ako makakapanood ng TV, hindi makakagamit ng electric fan, hindi makakapag-computer, hindi makakapag-radyo (buti na lang meron sa cellphone) at hindi makakapag-charge ng cellphone.

Kaya naman kapag mga bata, kanya-kanyang gawa ng paraan para maibsan ang pagka-bagot. Hindi syempre pwedeng mawala ang taguan. Da best yan lalo na ‘pag gabi at madilim! Syempre mas mahirp ang hanapan, kaso, kaso mas mahirap din ang maghanap ng tataguan.

At dahil nga madilim, kasama dyan ang kwentuhan ng nakakatakot. Mas nakaka-kilabot kasi ang ambience. At pagkatapos ng kwentuhan, tuloy naman sa ‘aswang-aswangan’ (wholesome an laro po ito!).

Nasubukan na rin namin ang maglibot sa buong village na para bang nagpi-People Power. Nag-karera na rin kami sa dilim. At kapag pagod na ang lahat, gagawa naman kami ng show mula sa mga anino ng kamay naming kinorteng mga hayop. At kapag wala pa ring kuryente, yung luha naman ng kandila yung pag-iinteresan. Hindi namin gusto ang brown out pero masaya kami.

Pero ngayon iba na. Mas boring na ang brown out. Ako, walang ginagawa kundi matulog. Yung mga dati kong kalaro naman, ayun nagtataguan pa rin kasabay ang pag-aaswangan’. Na-realize ko na kapag bata ka, mas naa-appreciate mo yung mga simpleng bagay sa mundo. *buntong hininga*

Pero hindi naman ako laging tulog kapag brown out (nakakapagod din kasi minsan matulog). Tulad ngayon, walang kuryente ¬¬¬(pesteng ulan yan), nakagawa tuloy ako ng post ng biglaan.

UPDATED: 10 Emerging Influential Blogs of 2009

UPDATE: Alas, here's my complete and unadulterated list of the Top Ten Influential Blogs of 2009. This list was actually completed weeks ago but only I updated now, being the gifted crammer that I am. I was in fact, having second thoughts on posting this, 'coz whether I do it or not, these guys were already assured of the spot. And I guess I don't have to say 'Good luck' but 'Congratulations!'.

***
One of my newest blogger friends, Snow of Dear Bloggery, courteously asked yours truly to nominate her blog as well as others in Ms. Janette Toral’s list of the Most Influential Blogs of 2009. I’ve been reading Bloggery for quite some time now and I deem it worthy of my vote, thus, this post was made. Sadly, as much as I want to nominate Bahay Ni Badong (hehe) and some friend bloggers’ blogs, circumstances don’t permit me, as one criterion for nomination is that a blog must be conceived between May of 2008 up to the present. Sorry! For more information, just follow this link.

1. Writing To Exhale
2. Dear Bloggery
3. The Struggling Blogger
4. Barrio Siete
5. Zorlone
6. Jologs na Yuppie
7. Palipasan
8. Isla de Nebz
9. I Am Xprosaic
10 Kelvinonian

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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Face-Off ver. 2 -- Bong VS Hayden

[Note: Nerdy portions ahead.]

Time for another head-to-head match-up! This time, between the honorable Bong Revilla Jr. and the 'perverted' Dr. Hayden Kho.

This is so ridiculous, seeing Revilla almost red-faced with anger, complaining about Kho's alleged disrespect for women. Bong Revilla -- the sublime womanizer. Funny. Allow me to use psychology on this one but I think Bong's in a compromise situation called 'reaction formation' -- disguising one's motivation and conflict by believing that the motive is exactly the opposite of his real motive (Gaerlan). In this case, it's Bong battling with Hayden's misconduct towards women because he, himself is trying to battle his own unconscious desires. Forgive me for the geeky-ness.

Here's my point, if Bong wants to cancel Haydens' license, then why is he not pleading for the lifetime banning of Ethel Booba. Criselda Volks, Mahal and all them others who have been in this sticky situation before? Why, because he's a doctor and he's supposed to be an educated and respected person? Ang mga artista ba hindi?

I also heard that Katrina Halili's got the support of the activist group Gabriella. OK, I get the point. Katrina is the wretched one. But isn't what she did morally unacceptable? She (flirted) with the doctor while he's still in a relationship, for crying out loud. And she must not dare say, "Tao lang po ako." She had her --here foes the nerdy part again-- superego at the back of her mind but she let her id impulses overwhelm her. Hope you got that.

Say hello Absurdity.