Friday, June 30, 2006

Friday's Feast 100

Appetizer
On average, approximately how many times per day do you yawn?
Three hundred sixty five. I'm always sleepy.

Soup
What was your most memorable school field trip?
Tough question. Field trips invoke memories of packed lunches and bags of junk food, big buses, buddy system, and getting home all hot and tired and cranky. Not very memorable.

Although, there was that one school trip in college (if you can call it a field trip) to Cebu which was very memorable for me. I was a student assistant in college, I worked at the Registrar's Office handing out report cards to bratty high school kids, in exchange for tuition and monthly stipend. The university arranged for some sort of bonding trip for all student assistants, we went to a sister school in Cebu to meet with other student assistants. It was the most fun time ever, even if I slipped on stage (some idiot poured water in the trash can beside the stage and it spilled over the stage) and got a very bad bruise.

For three days we met new friends, learned Cebuano bad words, and stayed up all night singing along with someone who brought his guitar. I didn't relish that Way of the Cross trek though, because all that's missing was a crown of thorns and a cross and we're Jesus. There were whips and evil guards, I swear.

Salad
Fill in the blank: I was extremely __________________ this week.
I was extremely paranoid this week. Although it's not paranoia if someone's out to get you.

Main Course
Which color do you think of when you hear the word "soothing"?
Peach. I read somewhere that if you're stressed, you should visualize yourself inhaling peach air and exhaling bile-green filth. It's supposed to cleanse you.

Dessert
What is something that, if you had to, you could save up the money to buy within one month?
I don't know, I'm not good at saving. But if there is one it's probably a trip to somewhere.

How to Kill Your Parents Slowly

1. After graduating from your degree, you announce to them that no, you can't find a job with that. Is it possible to enroll in another degree, even though you know perfectly well that they have to send three more kids to school?

2. About not finding a job, you really didn't try very hard. You just withdrew your allowance every week and dated your stupid girlfriend.

3. You got your degree, passed your board exams, and left home to find your place under the sun. With one condition: you will not be pressured to look for a job you don't like. You will take your time finding that one job meant for you, even if it means ditching job offers from perfectly good companies.

4. You're perfectly ok lying down in bed all day watching TV, because your board and lodging are being taken cared of by Mom. And hey, your allowance is late, maybe you should give them a call to remind them?

5. A week before enrolment, you tell your mom you owe your girlfriend sixteen big ones for all those dates you weren't able to pay for. So you gave her your tuition money because God forbid if she hates you for that.

6. You don't care if your father gets buried alive in debt, working halfway across the world away from his family, as long as your needs are met.

7. Your mom is on anti-depression medication already, and still you find ways to torture her psychologically.

8. You feel as if your parents owe YOU, for whatever it is you have done. You don't let them forget it.

9. You don't do your school obligations, because so what if you took that subject again? Mom and Dad are rich, right? You have all the time and money in the world to sashay through college.

10. You really believe, although you don't say it out loud, that your parents are going to be there forever "supporting" you with their unconditional love.

Well guys, let me tell you now before you hear it from the neighbor: they're not. One day you'll find yourself without Mom and Dad. You will realize that it will be up to you to get your shit together and get off your ass in order to lead a somewhat civilized adult life.

You don't know what it's like to wake up with fifty bucks to your name, with rent coming up and no food, not even a pitiful can of tuna. Still, you resist asking for help from your parents because you chose to live that life, and hell will freeze over before you admit defeat. So you do your best to do well, and basically come up to your own expectations on being independent. I hope you don't come to the no food part, but I think a little of that will do you all a world of good.

I'm sorry for writing this, but really, what you're doing to them is too much already.

UPDATE: Please see this post.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Professionalism in the Hands of Amateurs

People who know me well might say that I have a problem with authority. Well, I do not. When it might appear that I generally resent having to follow orders, it's not just that simple. I know I put up a fuss, mud the waters, and sometimes kick and scream in protest -- but that's not because I don't want other people telling me what to do.

I have no problem doing things for people who are superior to me, if I did I will be perpetually unemployed. In life, there will always be people who are higher than me, whatever the name of the ladder is.

I really can't afford to be unemployed, given the state of my bank account. When I was younger, I said to a friend that I might never be able to hide what I truly feel, even if the situation warrants it, I will never be plastik. My friend said that sometimes, it's not called kaplastikan, it's called diplomacy. He never spoke truer words (aside from the one where he said there's too much of me in the world already). I do diplomacy, but I still don't kiss ass. A line has to be drawn somewhere.

When someone is a figure of authority, be it a president of the country or a mother, he/she has to be able command respect. To command respect, his/her constituents must believe in their heart of hearts that that figure of authority deserves to be respected.

This is where my problem lies. If in the past you were my superior (or not) and ordered me around and have witnessed some of the kicking and screaming mentioned above, that means I didn't see you as someone who has the right to make me do things. This can be due to a variety of reasons:

1. You're basically a social misfit with no people skills, an asshole if you must.
2. Actually, I can forgive the lack of people skills IF you have the brains to justify it. I'm a sucker for intelligence.
3. You don't even understand what you're making me do.
4. If you're making me follow rules, make sure you do the exact same thing.
5. Don't gossip with other people in front of me. I'm supposed to look up to you, and gossiping in my book is so aliping sagigilid. We can do it, but you can't. You're paid so much more you should be working your ass off.
6. Don't conduct blatant displays of affection for your significant other in my line of sight. I don't care, but there is a place for everything.
7. This is an important one. When you screw up, just say you screwed up. I will respect you more. Don't look for escape goats, it's just pathetic. Especially if you're thinking about putting the blame on me.

There, just mix and match. Don't tell me to be something that you're not. Make me like what I see (you don't have to be nice to me) and I'll make your life easier.

Monday, June 26, 2006

It Kinda Defeats the Purpose


For the last time, I refuse to have a word war with somebody who can't even spell. Pity is P-I-T-Y, not P-I-T-T-Y.

Also, if you insist on talking in English, at least have the decency (and pride) to have correct grammar.

Lastly, I refuse to fight with anybody who acquired speaking skills from a call center that hawks credit cards.

Not really my drift. Go hawk more credit cards.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Friday's Feast 99

Appetizer
On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest, how much do you like your job?
I would give it a 7. It's not perfect, but I have time for other things, I'm not stressed out, and it pays well.

Soup
When was the last time you think you were lied to?
The whole fucking month of May.

Salad
Share some lyrics from one of your favorite songs.
What can I do, to make you feel secure
Remove all your doubts
So that you'll know for sure
That you're the only apple of my eye boy
(Time Will Reveal - El DeBarge)

Main Course
What do you do/take when you are in pain?
Painkillers, baby! I take them like they're popcorn -- ibuprofen, mefenamic acid, Buscopan, paracetamol -- I'm a painkiller junkie. I rationalize however, that even though they kill my liver, it's what they're there for, to eliminate my pain.

Dessert
Fill in the blanks: My __________ is very __________.
My hair is very unruly.
My filing backlog is very high.
My To Do list is very long.
My procrastinating is very bad.
My IQ is very low today.


PS: This is the first of my Friday's Feast. Expect something like this every Friday.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Not the Marvel Kind

When I was growing up in the 80's my mother kept my siblings and I entertained with the local komiks. Since I could read at three, they took it upon themselves to imbibe me with the only culture available within reach.

My father was very stingy, he didn't see the need of having a decent radio or TV in the house. The only radio we had in the house was one of those cardboard boxes that was powered with six D batteries, and when those batteries gave up he would put them out on the sun for a second round. Needless to say, it can't pick up FM stations so no music, except when the Sunday AM program would play Nora Aunor or Frank Sinatra.

Our television was the usual black and white thing, with a dial for channeling. We didn't even buy it, I think his employer gave it to him for fear that we would lose our minds in the middle of the mountains of Tagaytay. Nevertheless, we enjoyed the TV. But since I was the geeky kid I took to reading more rather than watch Weng Weng and his ilk throw punches with soundtracks. I only watched Sesame Street and Batibot, and only during weekends.

My mother was the more fun-loving of my parents, so she understands how it is for kids to be living in a remote area with almost no contact with the outside world. She would skimp on other things just so we can buy our weekly ration of komiks -- Pilipino, Weekly, and of course Funny Comics. My father was not very happy with this, but eventually he gave in and included it in our weekly marketing budget.

Thus I grew up reading the icons of my childhood, Niknok, Superkat, Planet op di Eyps, Pokwang, Bampy, and other characters that grew up with me. My favorites were Niknok and Pokwang, Niknok because he was the usual kid with the usual troubles, and Pokwang, because she and her Inang were so damn funny (kandirit, kandirit). I could even draw the two of them from memory.

I have amassed such a great amount of Funny Comics that my mother bound issues to form one big volume. Then some stupid kid borrowed it and we never saw it again. Don't look at me, my mother was the one who lent it.

Some of the more mature storylines I also read from komiks. I remember vividly Vincent Kua's illustrations of those angel and demon boys (I forgot the title), Velvet, and of course the classic Pokwang. I just recently learned that Mr. Kua has passed away last year. There goes another icon.

When I got to highschool I was still reading komiks, but by then a hundred different titles had mushroomed, and the choices were overwhelming. I tried to stick to my favorites, but sadly everything changes, and my Funny Comics wasn't that funny anymore.

Now they all have died, replaced by PlayStations and GameBoys and DVDs and what else. I had no choice but to move on, but how I miss Pokwang and Niknok.

Grating

Is there a more irritating text message than this:

"Hir na me, w8 lng u"

This usage of the words me/you as alternatives to the perfectly acceptable Tagalog equivalents when speaking in the vernacular is just annoying, as in shoot-you-in-the-head annoying. Remember Sharon in her teen movies ("Kawawa naman us")? Isn't she the most irritatingly sweet girl that you would have loved to shoot in the mouth just so that she would shut up -- well at least before she got pregnant.

It annoys me even further when my own friends text or write this way; it makes me want to reevaluate the basis of our friendship. To take it a degree further, when they email that way. It induces a migraine, to read something like "Tnx 4 adng me up, luking 4ward 2 a gr8 tym wd u ppl" that is not on a cellphone screen. And it's worse when it's the professionals, the educated, the well-informed who are writing this way.

Sorry for being anal about this, but THERE IS NO LIMIT on the number of characters you can write in email. Feel free to un-abbreviate, use long words, whatever. Because the point of having email is to communicate, if people wanted to break codes we would be using Morse code to forward jokes.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Barbellino the Ridiculous

Listen, I'm all for developing our own and such, but with the latest abomination of a comics classic Captain Barbell I can't help but get my knickers in a knot.

When the production staff was brainstorming for the show, what was it like? Did they wake up one day and decided that they would take one part Smallville, one part Spiderman, one part Batman, one part Superman, a generous sprinkling of all other superhero movies (including The Incredibles), put everything in a blender, and serve?

It's like watching Scary Movie, but without the funny part. At home, half of the time we try to identify which movie are they spoofing, except they try to pass it on as dead serious writing. And acting. Don't start me with the acting.

The only passable acting in that series is mostly from the supporting characters (Gloria Sevilla, Ricky Davao, BUT NOT John Regala who acts with his gums), and from Camille Pratts, and only because she's always exasperated about something. Maybe she's really exasperated in real life, like "What am I doing uttering these lines" kind of exasperation. Richard Gomez is a sham, we've entertained his i'm-not-old-i'm-still-cool stance for too long now, somebody ought to slap him hard so he'd wake up to the fact that he's not THAT Richard Gomez anymore.

Is it that easy to worm your way into acting these days, because look at who are they allowing to have camera time recently. Jeremy Marquez, with no other virtue except being the son of Joey Marquez (and I doubt if that is a virtue in itself); that Leah character who has only three facial expressions - constipated, about to cry, and a combination of both.

I hardly follow soap operas because I'm all for instant gratification -- I want to know how it ended in less than three hours -- but there were some that I really liked. Encantadia was one, at first I thought there were too much Lord of the Rings stuff, but then again it's a classic and countless other mutations of LOTR have appeared everywhere. But as the story progressed I realized how they really tried to infuse their own brand of originality in the story-telling and character development. Of course, it still has the token predictability, but all in all it was a refreshing change from all the bitch-slapping we see all the time.

I hope Mars Ravelo isn't spinning on his grave right now for all the injustices his classic is suffering at the hands of these money machines.

When Looks Are Not Enough

I heard this lady here is Alyssa Alano, one of the Viva Hotbabes. Oh pity pity, how can she do this to herself?

Thursday, June 15, 2006

This is What You Get When You're a Cab Addict

A few days ago, even though my wallet was breathing its last breaths I still hailed a cab to get home. I'm tired and sleepy and hungry, and that my friend is a lethal combination, not suitable for taking the bus. The driver had the radio tuned in to this AM program by a certain "Lakay". Now I don't know him, or any other programs for that matter because I rarely listen to the radio (I don't have one).

A lady correspondent was reporting over the phone about the National Artists' Awarding Ceremony which happened earlier that day. Lakay was, of course, asking questions about the ceremony and the lady was answering as best as she could. I admire the lady, because if it was me, I would have hung up on Lakay.

The conversation went like this, as best as I could remember:

Lakay: O, sino ba ang mga awardees bukod kay FPJ?

Lady: Babasahin ko po ang complete list ng mga awardees. Fernando Poe, Jr. for cinema, Ildefonso Santos for architecture...

Lakay: Bakit, ano bang mga naitayo nyang Santos na yan ha?

Lady: Lakay, landscape architecture po sya.

Lakay: May ganon pala.

Lady: (continuing as if she didn't hear anything)...Bienvenido Lumbera for literature...

Lakay: Ay kilala ko yan! Kung di mo naitatanong eh writer ako dati. May sinubmit akong tula dyan aba'y kinatay!

Lady: Talaga ho, Lakay.

Lakay: Aba'y oo! (blah blah blah)

Lady: ...Ramon Obusan for dance...

Lakay: Magaling ba yan? Tinuruan ba yan ni Lisa Macuja?

Lady: (giving up already)... siguro ho...Ben Cabrera for visual arts...

Lakay: Ang mahal pala ng mga painting ni BenCab ano? Ang pinakamura daw eh 300,000 pesos.

Lady: ...Ramon Valera for fashion design...

Lakay: Yan ba yung mahaba ang buhok? Gusto ko ang mga kanta nya eh.

Lady: Si Rey Valera po yun. Si Ramon Valera po ito, nagdedesign ng mga damit.

Lakay: Magaling pa ba yan kay Inno Sotto?

Lady: Idol po sya nina Inno Sotto.

Lakay: Ay ganun ba.

Then I was in front of the house and I had to get off. Didn't hear his comment about Abdulmari Asia Imao for sculpture. Should be fun, based on that 10 minutes of sharp commentary.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Freaky Milby

I saw the newest Close Up commercial, the one with the crazy girl auditioning for something. Then I saw something that really freaked me out, like I always do when I see Mahal. (Digression: doesn't Mahal scare you? I swear, if I ever see Mahal and she comes up to me, she better not touch me or I will scream my lungs out. The keyword is IF, because I know Mahal is not interested in meeting me either.)

Sam Milby as the Skull.

[I would have put a pic in here but I can't find any.]

God, what happened to him? He's so thin he's all teeth now. I guess that's good for the commercial, but really, when he smiled it was close to scary. Think Hilary Duff with anorexia, just prettier. Cheekbones jutting out from a head too small, and I thought he's all into burgers and fries now since he's endorsing Jollibee as well.

I was never a fan of Sam Milby, even at the height of that schizoprenia-inducing Pinoy Big Brother mania. I can't deny though that he's cute in a stuffed toy kind of way, adorable at first but give it a little time and the word you're looking for is "cloying".

Somebody fatten him up, or one day he'll star in Sam Raimi's the Evil Dead series.

Stupid Cheap PC

At the height of my self-imposed hibernation, a.k.a. Day 2 of the long weekend, I can't stand staring at the TV anymore. So I switched on my PC which I got for a few thousand bucks from my old office. It hasn't been turned on for over a month, and the computer table I was using was broken, making it wobble. I was worried that it wouldn't turn on, but yey it did.

I was feeling a little pissy at that time so I just wrote and wrote and wrote, while at the background Julia Roberts smiled her toothy smile for Dermot and Hugh. Yeah, I can write while watching TV.

I think I've written a good five pages of my angst of the day, intended for at least four blog entries. I stopped only when my back and wrists started to ache - after all, you can't expect a thousand-peso computer table paired with a monobloc chair to be ergonomic.

The next day, armed with my ever-reliable flash drive from some drug company, I tried to turn on the PC so I can transfer the document for uploading (my phone got cut off so I don't have Internet at home). Well, it wouldn't turn on. It can't read the hard disk, I think.

I'm starting to hate that effing table, it makes the CPU wobble so maybe, just maybe, it loosened up some of the connections inside hence the toot-toot-toot sound of death.

The idea of a laptop is starting to sound very, very good. If somebody offers a very good deal I might just take it.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

I Don't Want This Even if You Paid Me

My trust has been compromised. Not to say that I have been fully trusting all this time (and whose fault is that), but now there would always be a reason to look behind my shoulder.

It's just so tiring to be constantly worried and vigilant, and I don't know what kind of reassurance I'm looking for, right now I just want retribution. I'm not even sure if that's what I really want. It doesn't help that the source of my irritation is not letting up, making me want to practice the lost art of hanging, drawing, and quartering.

I need help in healing the wound, and I need it from you. It will leave a scar, but for now stopping the bleeding would be enough.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Shuffled

From J, because I'm a loser with nothing better to do. You have to set your music player to shuffle and the song that plays is the answer to the question.

How are you feeling today?
Hard Core Poetry - Tavares

And if my words don't make history
Just call it hardcore poetry

Will you get far in life?
Tell Me - Joey Albert

Tell me, where did I go wrong?

How do your friends see you?
Hanggang Ngayon - Kyla

pag sa hatinggabi sa pagtulog mo hanap mo ba ako hanggang sa paggising mo

Will you get married?
Getting to Know Each Other - Gerard Kenny (so jologs, and anong connect di ba)

Ev'ry time that your eyes meet mine
I light up like a neon sign

What is your bestfriend's theme song?
Satisfy my Soul - Bob Marley

I said, "Baby, never let me be a loner"

What is the story of your life?
If I Ain't Got You - Alicia Keys (how true, how tanga)

Some people want diamond rings
Some just want everything
But everything means nothing
If I ain't got you

What was high school like?
I'll Make Love to You - Boyz II Men (nyek, wala nga akong jowa nung HS eh)

How can you get ahead in life?
Fast Car - Tracy Chapman (how appropriate)

And your arm felt nice wrapped 'round my shoulder
And I had a feeling that I belonged
And I had a feeling I could be someone, be someone, be someone

What is the best thing about your friends?
What You Got - Justin Timberlake

Too late to come or shy now
You've already gone this far

What is today going to be like?
King Porter Stomp - Glenn Miller

Outside the moon is beamin'
Inside the joint is steamin'
Them folks can really, really party
All night long

What is in store this weekend?
My World - Avril Lavigne

Take some time, mellow out,
Party up, don't fall down,
Don't get caught, sneak out of the house

What song describes you?
Take Your Hand - Usher

You're killin' me on the inside
And you're the only one I want

To describe your grandparents?
Harana - Eraserheads

Tumutunog ang kampana
Halika na sa dambana

How is your life going?
Bluer than Blue - Regine V. (ang saklap naman)

I don't have to miss no tv show
I can start my whole life over

What song will they play at your funeral?
I'm a Fool to Want You - Billie Holiday

To seek a kiss not mine alone
To share a kiss that Devil has known

How does the world see you?
Don't Look Down - Go West

One more heartbeat and you walk the wire
Why wait? It's too late to put out the fire

Will you have a happy life?
An Olive Tree - Basia

Hug an olive tree!
I take it--things are looking good

What do your friends really think of you?
Gaya ng Dati - Gary V.

Ako'y nabulag ng mandarayang mundo, ako ay patawarin Mo

Do people secretly lust after you?
Let the Pain Remain - Basil Valdez

Love comes, love goes
But a sudden feeling never lets me be

How can I make myself happy?
The Trouble with Hello is Goodbye - Sergio Mendez (bakit parang ang lungkot yata ng buhay ko)

What should you do with your life?
Fado Portugues - Amalia Rodrigues (what the hell)

Will you ever have children?
Do It to Me - Usher (syempre kelangan munang mag-do bago majontis)

Thursday, June 01, 2006

You Did a Bad, Bad Thing

Define a bad day. What about a very bad day?

Is it when the sun is shining hot, but you're shivering from the cold seeping out of your bones?

Or when you constantly want to throw up?

You can't swallow food, even though you haven't eaten since the night before. The only thing that would pass through is water.

Your legs are wobbly, in a bad way. But then again you hope it's a good thing, maybe you'd fall and hit your head on the pavement and die.

You can't breathe. You try to stay still, but the shivering won't stop, you have to walk.

You can't focus, yet you can't just stop because the moment you free your mind, thoughts will start pouring in.

The urge to break something is getting stronger, but since you think of yourself as a civilized person, you don't give in. Instead you grit your teeth and think about stapling your fingers together.

You wonder whether it's all worth it.