Thursday, December 16, 2010

Burnin’ the Midnight Oil Again


I’ve noticed that I have been staying up late the past few days, sacrificing more and more sleep in order to straighten out the smaller details of work.

Right now, however, I’m busy bookmarking my website.

In the meantime, if anybody’s interested in buying a new amplifier, or is a typewriter geek, head on over to my eBay page. I’ve got some stuff up for sale. Photos for the curious.

Monday, December 13, 2010

The First Resolution


It hurts me to say this, but I think that, while I am still the size and shape of a fully-grown zeppelin, I can no longer claim ownership to the Zeppelin. Just like any concert hall that has seen better days, I guess you could say that the Tiger finally woke up, and the place just had to go.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Turkey Day!


Okay, I’m not really North American, and I still honestly don’t understand what the big thing about turkey is (I’d really much rather eat lamb), but the reason for giving thanks, I understand completely.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

That Small Window of Opportunity


One of the things I dislike about walking outdoors as an exercise is that you can only do it on certain points throughout the day. If you do it too late in the morning, you’re going to get burned. If you do it too early in the afternoon, you’re going to get burned.

No offense, Mr. Sun, but you’re one annoying sasquatch.

This is one of the reasons I want to buy a treadmill. So that I can walk bloody indoors.

Jeez. Guess I’m walking at 4PM later today.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

LSS LSS


You’d think that after a night filled with incessant, boisterously noisy singing, I’d be hard put to find something to (now, I’m not sure if you get LSS, or if you are LSS’d, so fill in that blank for yourself) with, but it happened.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

If I Named this Post “Enter Post Title”, would You Guys Read It?


I envy some of my former writer friends. They have the capacity—some of them even have the time—to write continuously. Now, this may come in as a shock for most of you who’ve been following my blogging history throughout Tabulas, that short stint on Wordpress, and finally, my multiple Blogger accounts, but for the record, for the past two years, I haven’t even had the chance to sit myself down and put a decent new word on any of my short stories.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Some Help, Please


I need help with two things. Note that these are either-or, but information about both will be greatly appreciated.

1. Where can I buy a cheap, 5 to 6-cup Moka pot in Metro Manila?

2. Barring #1, where can I get the gasket seal in my current 2-demitasse Moka pot replaced?

Any help would be appreciated. I cannot stress just how much I dislike percolator-made coffee.

On another note: the new version of Windows Live Writer is driving me insane. How much memory does this monster need??

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Robin X Arthur?


I had a rather odd conversation today with a friend. He was talking about making a Robin Hood – Camelot cross-over, and I couldn’t help but get absorbed into the conversation.

Let me explain. Back when I was a kid, I borrowed lots of books from the old school library. Some of the books were hardbound classics, while others were illustrated adaptations made safe for kids. I read every adventure-themed book I could find; my first love was whodunit stories, mystery novels ranging from the light and fanciful to the deep, dark, sombre world of Arthur Conan Doyle (at least for a kid).

Then I started running out of those books, and I moved on to reading fantasy novels and novels about the Lone Ranger. I don’t remember most of the books I tore through back in those days, but I know I read a lot. I wasn’t a member of the bookworm club for several years for nothing (it was also an excuse to keep away from sportsfest-related activities; you could hang at the library to hide from the booths and the “bullies” who made sure you were humiliated for the whole world to see).

I first read Robin Hood, and while I don’t fully remember the story now, I believe that it was one of the first chivalric tragedies I’ve ever read. The merry men they may be, but the eventual rise of King John to the throne, and the disbanding of the thieves of Sherwood forest, to the penultimate death of Robin of Huntington by bloodletting sort of wrecked the entire story, but in a good way.

And then I read Ivanhoe.

Ivanhoe was a bore, now that I think about it, but it got me interested in Prince Valiant, which in turn piqued my interest in Arthur Pendragon’s knights of the round table. I’m not exactly sure which version it was I read (it was an old, original hardbound book that smelled just like any old, hardbound book with plenty of pride in its spine should), and unless I did a little bit of research, I don’t think I can remember much about what took place throughout the life of Arthur.

But why does the memory stand so clear in my head? Because, good reader, the fact that I stayed up until six in the morning on a school day, reading the bloomin’ book by flashlight, is, up to now, still pretty amazing.

So, two books from my childhood. Two epic tales of chivalry, magic, and European honor. The story of an archer and a king, put together in comic form. And my friend wants to work on it for real.

Two questions, however, come to mind:

Who’s going to do the research? And how the hell is Arthur going to become the king of the Britons when Richard the Lionhearted was the monarch during Robin Hood’s time?

Two answers to the last question. First is Time Paradox. Second is a wizard did it.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Clashing of Bone and Sinew


One of the biggest problems of writing Pinoy lit in English is the fact that, if you’re trying to paint the actual life of your average Filipino in English, no word in the language can efficiently meet the rough, almost edgy, flow of the Tagalog dialogue. Notice how I didn’t language—proper Tagalog is flowing, lambent, and slow.

I was thinking about this the other night, and I couldn’t wrap my thoughts to believe the following lines, had they been written in English:

Tumayo ang matanda mula sa palanggana kung saan siya naglalaba, at hinabol ang kanyang anak sa kalye, kung saan ito’y kasalukuyang naglalaro ng piko.

Hoy putragis na bata ka talaga,” ang kanyang unang isinigaw, kasabay ng batok sa ulo niyong bata, “ang tigas ng ulo mo, lintik ka! Pumasok ka sa loob! Sige na, wag mo na hintaying matuyo pa ang dugo ko sa ‘yo, kundi matatamaan ka na naman sa’kin. Ang tapang tapang mo, pero pag napalo ka naman, iiyak-iyak ka ng parang tanga. Sige! Pumasok ka na sa loob.”

I can’t write Tagalog for shit, but this is something you can easily see in the streets of Manila. I hear one of my neighbors say something like this on a regular basis. From inside my house. You’d think she had a megaphone or something.

Notice how each syllable of her words sounds like a cracking knuckle that’s ready to hit somebody in the face. There’s a sense of urgency that you just can’t see in the English language:

Hey, you damn kid,” shouted the old woman as she hit the boy squarely on the head, “stop being such a hard-headed git and get inside the house. Haul your ass, now, before I get any angrier; you’ll just be asking for a good spanking. You think you’re so hot, but once you get hit by your mother, you’ll go on crying like a little shit. Come on! Get inside.”

It’s just not the same. In a way, I can see how native English-speakers find it easy to stand up to their parents; they don’t sound threatening. At all. At least, when compared to the classic example of the Pinoy housewife.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

And the Star Sheriffs


So I wasn’t able to stick to my end of the bargain. There goes my 100-words-a-day-challenge. But the important thing is that after this past week, I’m slowly getting back into my groove.

(a little too late to save the week, but y’know. It ain’t so bad.)

Anyway, because I’m at a loss for something constructively complete to say right now, here’s a list of some things I (re?)discovered this week. I’m not going to try and say that these are in any way universally meaningful, but right now, these are the thoughts that coalesce in my mind whenever I’m caught in the bathroom without a book (which is increasingly becoming the case, much to my alarm).

1. Sometimes, there’s a region in a relationship wherein you can’t fill in the spaces with talk, pillow or otherwise. That’s when, just like a good musical sheet, the quarter, half, and whole rests make themselves important. It takes a while to get used to, and if you get too used to them, they’re a curse (just like anything that isn’t taken into moderation). But that doesn’t downplay their importance. And how sweet it can make your life.

2. Sleeping in bed for the first twelve hours is good and restful. Anything beyond that will act like a psychological trap, locking you into a world of your own creation, and dragging you into the depths of depression, destroying your sleeping patterns, and generally adding to whatever bacteria-induced fever you’re having at the moment.

3. Even clinical morons have their moments of biting brilliance. Then they go back to being morons, and you just can’t help but shake your head at how caustically unruly the universe can seem.

4. I like direct narratives. The story doesn’t have to flow in a direct plot, but the narratives that I like use straightforward language. To illustrate: I am currently reading Shirley Jackson. She’s a reprieve from Thomas Pynchon, who is a brilliant pain in the ass.

5. I get irritated a lot. By things that shouldn’t irritate me. Especially on certain days. At least, this week. I don’t know why.

6. I like writing so long as it isn’t for work. I don’t want to have to write for work ever again, because I’m way too anal for my own good. This is why I’m trying to get this little firm up.

7. In connection to #6 – holy crap, is that ever oh so difficult.

8. In a tangent connected to #7, I miss watching classic Nick cartoons such as Hey Arnold! Jim Lang is a jazz sleeping giant.

9. I’m becoming addicted to (four panel) comic strips. Thanks to you. You know who you are.

10. Not getting your weekly dose of exercise is like psychological warfare as illustrated in the Asterix comics by Legionary Magnumopus: hitting somebody over the head with a billy club. Unfortunately, you’re on the receiving end.

11. And finally, I like mango jam.

On a completely unrelated note, it has been discovered that love actually makes you lose more friends. Except that you do it voluntarily, because love is (ironically) sweet like that.

Who commissions these studies?! (that was a rhetorical question, for those who can actually answer that).

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

You Know that Feeling you get when you’re Looking for a Word and you Can’t Remember what it was?


The Internet’s abuzz with this study that supposedly sets a baseline (of sorts) for how much you need to earn to really be happy in today’s world.

I’m not going to write about that. Lord knows, I’m personally poor enough to be worrying about how to keep happy with what I already have. Instead, I’m going to tell you readers how my day went. Which is unusual, since I never keep a diary, much less try to make a blog post seem like one. And yes, I’m stalling. The idea is that appalling.

It’s kinda sad that these days, one of the things that can complete my day is the fact that I was able to inch my way closer to sealing this deal with a potential client. I’m not saying anything concrete, because I might jinx the entire thing, and lord knows that we need as many clients as we can get, but I’ll say this much: I’m rather proud that the details of this possible contract, while not a complete departure from the usual menu served by my firm, is something that we’ve never really tackled full on. It’s something that I’ve been wanting to sink my teeth into for a long time now, but never really had the chance. Well, now here’s an opportunity, and if I play my cards right, who knows. We might actually get it long-term.

It also warms my heart to know that my business partners are (because of one situation or the other) slowly opening up to the idea of learning my trade. It could be the start of something really fruitful. Fingers crossed?

Wow, so I was actually able to pull off a diary-like entry, after all. H-uh. And to think it hardly took ten minutes of my time.

One last thing. The realization that you’re genuinely happy, because somebody else is happy today, is enough to double the aforementioned emotion. There’s a term for this, I just can’t remember it. It’s at the tip of my tongue.

Monday, September 06, 2010

One Hundred Words a Day


I haven’t been completely honest here lately. Well, I actually haven’t been posting, so that kinda makes the first statement a little bit of a moot point, doesn’t it? But I had a short conversation with a friend the other day, and she mentioned that my recent posts have been more, shall we say, aloof than what I’ve been used to.

Which is, I guess, due to a lot of things. But mostly, I think it’s because I’m out of practice. Has life gotten so much of my attention that I’ve forgotten, slowly, how the art of facing a blank canvas?

Oddly enough, I do blame writing for my lack of updates. Which is why, from today on, I will try to post at least 100 words every day. Even if all I’m writing about is pretty much nothing.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Macho Gwapito


Back when I was in (and out, and in again) of college, there was this little TV channel that made the circuit in and amongst the universities in Metro Manila. The channel was UnTV31, and one of the more impressive shows was a (possibly) doobie-induced reality documentary called Strangebrew.


If you watched TV (and/or drank as much as I did) back in those days, you probably know of this show, and of the characters Tado, Erning (both of ‘em), and the occasional diwata by the name of Ramon Bautista.

Now that I think about it, if it weren’t for the downright questionable nature of some of the segments, this show’d be a great tool to get jarheads and lazyboy students to actually learn something, because the vehicular wavelength of the show was something that they could relate to.

But yeah, the shows were really out of whack sometimes, and I only realized today that watching an episode of Strangebrew was a good way of unwinding after a long day at work.

Not to mention the fact that it introduced me to the truly awesome source of the show's intro:

Friday, August 13, 2010

Bo Got Bo’ed


There are very, very few things I find interesting in American baseball, being the Filipino that I am.

This is one of them.

Taken from the Youtube description:

Boyfriend chooses the better part of valor and ducks a foul ball, which strikes his girlfriend, earning him the nickname "Bailer"
HOUSTON -- A young female Astros fan got a painful lesson in chivalry Monday night at Minute Maid Park.
The woman, identified only as Sarah, was struck on the right arm by a foul ball off the bat of Chris Johnson in the fourth inning while sitting down the left-field line -- a ball that she didn't see coming because her boyfriend ducked out of the way at the last second.
"As soon as we got here and I saw where we were sitting, I said 'Baby, we're going to get hit,'" the woman said when interviewed during the game. "He said, 'No, I'll catch it if you do. We just had this conversation and sure enough, the ball comes at me. He just bailed."
The boyfriend, named Bo, wound up retrieving the ball, but he had one of the oldest excuses in the book as to why he lost flight of the ball.
"The ball was coming up and I was going to catch it and it was in the lights and I lost track of it," he said.
Sarah was standing -- or, in this case, sitting -- by her man, even if she had a bruise to show for it.

Priceless. I can only imagine the fight they had after that game. I’ll bet you it involves a cast, and ends with a ration. I mean, what is that crowd even screaming?

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Seven Days


Some time ago, I had a Sting / The Police phase, and it all began witn “Seven Days”. I was trying to date this girl via long distance at the time, and the song resonated with me. Not that I had a rival who was a neanderthal, because I only know of one caveman in my life, and he deserves another post altogether.

“Seven Days” was originally given to me by a friend I used to jam with back in the days. Being a drummer, he’d given me a record that featured Vinnie Colaiuta, and that more or less started my love interest in the drums, and the Sting-Colaiuta pair-up.

sting1

See, the thing about Sting is that he’s such a talented man. I don’t think you often see an artist of his calibre. I’ve only ever heard another voice like his (that’s Steve Conte, fyi), and the fact that he can play the bass at varying time signatures while singing boggles my mind. I don’t know about other bass players, but singing the main vocal piece of a title while following the rhythm and the beat is difficult, and I’ve botched up quite a lot of performances because I tried to do just that.

vinniecolaiuta_20000303

Colaiuta, in the meantime, is legendary for having made Terry Bozzio toss his sheet music away in frustration. The man’s drumming style is simple and straightforward. The gem in his style, though, is that he inserts a lot of syncopated and off-time beats into the empty spaces in between notes, much like a fat man would fill up a Subway sandwich.

Sting’s a legend in himself, and Vinnie’s an urban legend who commands respect even from Chic Corea (and that’s a tall order). But I think whenever I think of Sting and Vinnie, I will always come back to the statement that “Seven Days” was one of the best songs ever conducted and performed by these two.

Time Signature: 5/8

It makes me think. Perhaps I need a drink.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Chucked


Wow. I can’t believe I finished the entire Chuck series in a month. For those of you who have yet to see even an episode of it, check it out. It is pure geek hilarity.

And of course, the reason why I started watching Chuck? Adam Baldwin, a.k.a. John Casey.

Seriously. Fun.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

This Just In: Coffee is Useless


Oh man, somebody’s going to kill me for that post title. Anyway. I haven’t written anything in a while. Life’s busy catching up to me. Who’d have thought that 27 would be so hectic?

Anyway, I am currently dressed and ready to head out to work, so I’ll keep this short:

  • I am disappointed by The Last Airbender. M. Night, you have failed me.
  • I haven’t gone out to see any of my close friends for a little r&r for nearly three months.
  • Somebody I know is having a pink week. Much to her chagrin.
  • I am drowning in (paper)work.

That’s pretty much it. Let’s hope the month picks up from this point on!

And just between ourselves, here’s to hoping that modern science soon develops a LEGITIMATE drug that can give coffee a run for its money. Seriously. I dropped to sleep at the office right after finishing a cup of 3 in 1. Either the sugar’s not helping me any, or I have developed an immunity to coffee.

Either way, I wish there were a cheap coffee place in the area I work in. I can’t make decent black coffee from an instant sachet to save my life.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Nighthood


A huge part of my childhood was spent watching cartoons on the TV. Some of the more memorable shows include The Uncanny X-Men, Batman: The Animated Series, Saber Rider and the Star Sheriffs, Voltron, and of course, The Visionaries.

Who could forget the Visionaries?

But I digress. One of the best parts of growing up during the 80’s and the 90’s was the fact that quality cartoons were produced during that era (some of them were even developed here in the Philippines!). I don’t know what my generation’d be like if we didn’t have the regular Friday and Saturday morning shows to look forward to. Back then, we kids didn’t have access to cable and Cartoon Network, and Nickelodeon was only a two-hour slot on (I think) RPN 9. We didn’t have the luxury of wall-to-wall cartoons, and we had to content ourselves with what we got.

And, truth be told, we were generally pretty happy with what we did get. Ain’t that right, fellow 80’s kids?

Nighthood’s a gem that very few Filipinos know (or remember) from the golden age of Saturday morning cartoons. When you start talking about Lupin these days, you usually either talk about Maurice LeBlanc’s character, or the anime spun off from the aforementioned property, Lupin III. I generally don’t have anything against the former, and the latter is like white noise filling up the gaps between Arsene Lupin and Sherlock Holmes. What I don’t get is why very few people remember that, for a short period of time, Arsene Lupin, the most critically-acclaimed gentleman thief who is said to rival Holmes in both intellect, and bedside manner, was immortalized in a short-lived but nonetheless impressive Saturday morning (or Friday evening, as it were) cartoon?

The series, if you look at it closely, resembles the lines and grittiness that the Batman: TAS was known for. Except that where the solid polygons on Bruce Wayne finished, the wispy, Alfons Mucha-esque lines on Arsene Lupin began. If you watch Lupin closely as he emerges from the shadows, monocle first, you’d see hints of anime and Batman; I’d even go as far as to say that for a French-produced series, Nighthood featured a lot of salient qualities that, despite the poor quality of technology back then, made Saturday morning cartoons worth watching.

What were these qualities? Good pacing, a decent storyline, and characters that you could really get into. Those are some things that we rarely encounter in cartoons these days. And I can’t help but feel that my nieces, my nephews, and my future kids (if any) are missing out on something that made my generation extra special.

Or I could be waxing whimsical here. It doesn’t matter. I could say, with utmost certainty, that my cartoons were awesome, and I believe that Nighthood was a good example of what the TV had to offer back when I was a kid.

Friday, July 02, 2010

This is what I did on the first day of 27


Spent it in bed. Sick. Watched Chuck. Will now go to a meeting in a little bit. At nearly ten pm.

It’s a Friday. I should be watching my shows, with a couple of beers with me. Or playing Runes of Magic. Instead, because of this bug, I had to stay home from work. Curses!

In other news, I think I may be pushing the bar on microblogging.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

So. Twenty-seven.


Let’s list the things that happened on my birthday (or thereabouts):

  1. I became a bit (!) richer.
  2. We ate a 20”……pizza. With four different flavors.
  3. A new president was elected.
  4. Said new president received his first impeachment complaint.
  5. Former president lodged a campaign for charter change.
  6. Somebody died / killed herself in Shangri-la.
  7. Nina bought me a cake.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Ondoy Memories


I remember back when Ondoy was happening. I remember the aftermath. I know people who were affected by that natural disaster, and there’s no way that Metro Manila can take another Ondoy in 2010.

 Taken from Susa Caparas 

The problem is, you look out in the streets, and very few things seem to be different. There’s still trash out in the streets, the Manila drainage system still sucks, and we’re still very much the hotbed of humanity that we used to be. Needless to say, the government and the people of the metro have done very few things to address the very problems that caused Ondoy to happen in the first place.

The only differences?

- In Manila proper, there are now waste receptacles in almost every corner. That’s saying a lot.

- Whenever it rains, people tend to get paranoid. For myself, I can say that every time I look out from the back of a jeep and see puddles on the ground, I can’t help but wonder whether I should head to Nina’s house, or not.

That’s pretty much it. Which leads me to say that if ever another Ondoy rolls around, and what with the new government still trying to get a feel of things, all those memories of 2009 might come back to haunt us.

Here’s to hoping that that never happens. At least, not during our generation’s lifetime. In the meantime, stay safe, everybody.

Testo


I’m five blog posts short, around 25 articles worth to edit by morning. There was a power outage earlier, just around the time when Nins was supposed to interview Elaine for the practicum.

This was a slow Sunday, though. The best way to end it? Find out after the jump.

A couple of beers. And a dose of Testostallone.

I can't believe how much I'm waiting for this film. It's even got me more excited than the Avatar movie.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Degrees


If you think about it:

1. I am connected to Manuel Legarda by two degrees (me >son of> mom >teacher of> Manuel).

2. In the same token, I am connected to Mimi Gates (Bill’s mother, yes) via my sister (me >brother of> ate >friend of> Mimi).

3. And (this blew my mind away) I am connected to Queen’s Brian May by seven degrees (me >related to> my sister / my niece >studies/ student of> St. Scholastica’s College >school of> Cory Aquino >wife of> Benigno Aquino Jr. >topic of director> Robert Markowitz >hired as musical director> Brian May).

Brian May is cool. Seriously. And it’s amazing what the mind can think of when it is sleep-deprived.

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Political Scenery


In the Philippines, we value our politics as much as we value our beer. That said, the effects of both politics and beer in this country are similar; it could lead to fights that are circular and tedious at best, and childish and utterly unproductive at worst.

Which isn’t to say I abhor politics altogether. It just so happens that I’d rather watch than have much of a say, because I discovered that the minute you say something, you automatically take sides. And it’s never good for anybody with even an iota of journalistic training to take sides. At least, that’s what I’d like to think.

Cop out? Maybe. I'm not going to defend myself. But I will say that this is why I have tried, as best as I could, to remain neutral throughout the entire political debacle that is the (automated!) elections in the Philippines this past month. Of course, there’s no way one could remain completely neutral, when clowns like Bong Revilla and Juan Ponce Enrile cling to the senate with a death grip, when anomalies like Manny Pacquiao, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, and that Ampatuan guy (hereafter referred to as TAG) all get elected into public office. But I think that considering my country’s long history of scandalous, bureaucratic, and downright corrupt past elections, I’d have to say that I’m pretty happy that my generation (the last one that made sense, according to Facebook) took a very active part—either in the debates, in the campaigns, or in the elections themselves—in the ushering of a new age.

Sabi nga nila, “iba na ngayon”. Is it, really? We’ll have six years to find out.

To the candidates who won / will win, don’t act like morons and get your shit straight, especially you, Noynoy. If you crap up, the people will have your head, and Bongbong Marcos will be leading the charge (full circle?). To the guys who lost, shut yer traps and accept your defeat. I’m ashamed to say that I know some of you, and these are the guys who are crying foul play like babies (so to speak). To the voters—if your manok won, good for you. If your manok didn’t, then that’s the way it is. I don’t think it’s worth stressing yourself out over the choice of millions of people. Just support the upcoming government, and watch them like a hawk at the same time. That's your job as the citizenry, after all.

In other news, I’m glad the elections are over. That means we won’t be seeing ads of Manong Johnnie in my blog anymore. And my, but aren’t the streets quieter these days?

Monday, April 12, 2010

The New Doctor Who


Holy schneider. I really can’t express just how excited I am by this season of Doctor Who. A lot of people doubted Matt Smith, for good reason—David Tennant was an AWESOME Doctor.

But I just finished watching the latest episode of the new serial, and I was blown away. If there was anything missing, it was the fact that this new Doctor doesn’t have as manic a laugh as Chris Ecclestein or David Tennant did, but he’s still getting into the shoes, so you never know.

I mean, he doesn’t even have a catchphrase yet!

The critics were right; Matt Smith might be one of the best Doctors yet!

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Holy Heart Attack, Batman


Apparently, when people started hearing rumours about the KFC Double-Down—a chicken sandwich where the bread is made of chicken, and the filling is made of bacon—the powers that be weren’t kidding around.

Now, lemme tell you something. Once upon a time, I tried a delicacy from Wendy’s that they affectionately called the Baconator, a monster of a sandwich that hit your stomach (and your arteries) as hard as Ahnuld would have hit an opposing flunky back in the day.

The Baconator was really good. If I were an athlete, I’ll bet you anything that I would have been able to use every single calorie in that burger with no trouble at all.  But I’m no athlete, and I felt the hugeness of that burger eight hours after I finished eating it.

It was humongous, and it knew how to make its presence felt.

Now, here comes KFC with the Double-Down. Check the picture to see just how mouth-wateringly lethal this sandwich is:

 doubledown_hdr

 

Doesn’t it look deadly? There’s supposed to be a grilled version, but I’m not too sure if local stores will carry those (I’m not even sure if local stores will even carry the item, really).

Now, it has less calories than most of the other big burgers out there (less than the Angry Whopper, definitely), so it might not actually be that bad for you, even if you’re no athlete. But the salt content is enough to put your kidneys on a fix. I think that when I do try to eat this, I’ll be chewing on it for half a day, then revert back to a purely vegetable-based diet (or if worse comes to worst, steamed fish-based) for the rest of the day just to make up for the salt.

You can read more about it on this post.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Open Letter to Smart Broadband


Profanity follows. You have been warned. If you still feel like reading this, please—knock yourself out.

Dear Cocksuckers who (supposedly) Provide me with Internet,

 

Firstly, I would like to congratulate you for giving me a reason to write the very first open letter in my blog. I have never openly addressed an entity, individual or otherwise, via the worldwide web aside from Twitter because I (used to) firmly believe that service problems are the kind that could easily be taken care of by the said service’s respective support team.

However, during the several times that I have called you to complain about the quality of your service with my account, I have experienced the following:

  • Annoying advertisements that SCREAM into my ear. Didn’t anybody ever teach you guys that it’s rude to shout?
  • A service system that CONSISTENTLY times out. Either the agent cuts me off, or your system absolutely sucks. Whichever the case, you guys rock (and by rock, I mean you suck).
  • Annoying advertisements that SCREAM into my ear.
  • A technical support team that is composed of an arrogant bastard and his twin brother who doesn’t even show his face, contenting himself with sitting outside, on his bike, smoking a cigarette. Or mentally masturbating. In any case, he is a disgrace to society.

How difficult is it for me, an end user, to ask for a new radio antenna and several feet of new copper cables? Isn’t that what we’re paying you guys to provide us with? Isn’t that why, for PhP999.00, your supposedly able technicians will risk life and limb to climb up to our roof, replace the radio antenna, roll out a few feet of cable?

If you didn’t think that 999 was a good asking price to require such heroic feats of service (which is what your service technicians apparently consider them to be, after observing the hesitation in your crew’s faces when I asked them to climb up to the roof), then maybe you should have considered that back when you were thinking of providing Internet service in the first place.

To end this letter, I would like to inform you, Smart Broadband, subsidiary of the Philippine Long Distance Telecommunications Corporation (PLDT), that I will be researching for other ISPs that don’t suffer from such HORRIBLE SERVICE. Fuck you, Smart Bro. You just broke the bro code, and will be losing a customer in the process.

 

Sincerely,

Your Ass.

Friday, April 02, 2010

That’s a Lot of Money


Here’s a quick question: what would you do if you were a billionaire for five hours?

This guy did the sensible thing (or at least I’m guessing he did): he reported the fact to the bank.

We don’t often get surprises like that—more often than not, we discover that the bank actually deducts from our accounts (of course, if they deduct by the billions, that’s a lawsuit waiting to happen).

But what would you have done if that were you?

I like his idea of depositing it in an interest-earning account. Nobody knows if the man would have given the interest to charity, but owning a bank account that can earn a monthly, even quarterly, interest of $7M is no joke.

As a matter of fact, a friend of mine and I were discussing what one should do if one actually won (sorry for the alliteration) any of the Philippine Lottery jackpots.

“If you place it in a time-deposit bank account with a 6% monthly interest,” says my friend, “the jackpot prize of P10M can earn you a monthly interest of P600,000.”

And the 10M is tax-free. That’s insane.

That, my friend, is a lot of money. A LOT of money. Now, how to make that 10M—that’s a completely different ballgame altogether.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Life and Lemons


Just when I was about to say, “Hey, I’m finally blogging again!” I inexplicably stop blogging. I can explain, really.

Well, not really. I blame work. Ahh, work, the universal scapegoat. Second only to life. Because when work isn’t happening, life happens.

Thus, we forget to blog.

Sometimes, don’t you just wish that work would just…go away? In Black Books, Bernard Black complains about all the people going into his bookstore.

Bernard: Look at them. What do they want from me?

Manny: Well, they want to buy books.

Bernard: Yes, but why me? Why do they always come to me?!

I think anybody who’s faced the concept of a full nine-hour workday has faced this same sentiment. Unlike Bernard, though, who refuses to face the reality that he sells books for a living, the more sensible people living in the here and now know that we need to work in order to survive.

But sometimes, it’s a lot easier to just ask why?

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Noynoy and his Achievements


I’m not voting, but for most of you (Pinoy) readers out there, you probably will be. So while I don’t think anybody (aside from JC de los Reyes, who probably wouldn’t win, and Mar Roxas, who decided to run for VP instead) in the presidential running deserves to get my vote, I believe that the safest candidate we have is Mr. Aquino.

But he hasn’t done SHIT for our country. Has he?

Goes to show what you know (and until recently, what i knew). But several friends of mine who advocate the yellow cause have pointed me to a blogger who has generously posted a quick list of Noynoy Aquino’s achievements during his stay in public service.

Since, again, most of you people who’d like to vote for NoyMar but don’t know what it is they’ve achieved would probably appreciate this list, I’m reprinting it now. More after the jump.

SENATOR BENIGNO “NOYNOY” S. AQUINO III ACCOMPLISHMENTS IN PUBLIC SERVICE

Senator Noynoy Aquino is vigilant in his pursuit of truth, justice and freedom, the fundamental principles that make democracy work in this country that his parents had likewise fought hard to restore. His commitment to preserve, strengthen and continue their legacy is evident in his accomplishments.

I. Positions held

Chairman, Committee on Local Government
Co-chair, Committee on Justice and Human Rights

II. Committee Membership
• Accounts
• Economic Affairs
• Education, Arts and Culture
• Environment and Natural Resources
• Government Corporations and Public Enterprises
• Justice and Human Rights
• National Defense and Security
• Peace, Reunification and Reconciliation
• Public Works
• Trade and Commerce
• Urban Planning, Housing and Development
• Ways and Means
• Youth, Women and Family Relations

III. Senate Bills
Senate Bill No. 1370 – an act granting an annual productivity incentive to all workers in the private sector, establishing
mechanisms for its implementation, and for other purposes

Senate Bill No. 1719 – an act limiting the re-appointment of presidential nominees by-passed by the Commission on Appointments (CA)

Senate Bill No. 1710 – an act banning the re-appointment of a regular member of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) who has already served the full term

Senate Bill No. 2035 – an act requiring the regular maintenance and preservation of all public infrastructures, establishing mechanisms for its implementation and for other purposes

Senate Bill No. 2036 – an act increasing the penalties for non-compliance of the prescribed increases and adjustments in the wage rates of workers, amending for the purpose Republic Act No. 6727

Senate Bill 2159 – an act adopting the doctrine of superior responsibility to all actions involving military personnel, members of the Philippine National Police and other civilians involved in law enforcement

Senate Bill 2160 – an act amending Section 4 of RA 9184, otherwise known as the Government Procurement Reform Act to further restrict exemptions to the requirement of public bidding

Senate Bill 2978 – an act amending the DILG Act to further clarify the relationship between local chief executives and their respective local police chiefs

Senate Bill 3121 – the Budget Impoundment Control Act, which seeks to strengthen legislative oversight over executive spending

IV. Senate Resolutions
Senate Resolution No. 190 – investigating the exercise and implementation of the powers of local chief executives under Republic Act 7160 otherwise known as the “Local Government Code of 1991” in relation to Republic Act 6975 known as the “Philippine National Police (PNP) Law” and Republic Act 8551 known as “The PNP Reform and Reorganization Act
of 1998”

Senate Resolution No. 205 – investigating the bomb explosion at the House of Representatives, condemning in the strongest possible terms the recent bombing at the House of Representatives, extending sympathies to the victims and calling on authorities to conduct a swift and thorough investigation into this incident

Senate Resolution No. 229 – directing the appropriate Senate committees to conduct an inquiry, in aid of legislation, on the circumstances leading to the arrest and ‘processing’ of journalists and media personalities after the Manila Peninsula standoff on 29 November 2007

V. Fiscalizer
The responsibilities of a senator go beyond the drafting of legislation or the creation of policies. As a true representative of
the people, Senator Aquino has consistently voiced his concerns on several issues, drawing attention to the anomalies in our current administration.

2009 General Appropriations Act (GAA)
By vigorously examining the General Appropriations Act for 2009 submitted by the Executive, Senator Aquino was able to propose key amendments to the 2009 GAA that seek to tighten congressional oversight on the executive’s use of public funds.

Champion of Human Rights and People’s Participation At the heart of all legislative and policy-making initiatives is the development and welfare of the people. Senator Aquino has sought the proper relocation of informal settlers and the delineation of authority of parties involved in demolitions such as the MMDA. The bill amending the UDHA is currently underway.

Through his privilege speeches, Senator Aquino has drawn attention to the plight of desaparecidos and victims of extra-judicial killings. He introduced substantial amendments to the Cooperative Code to make it more responsive to the needs of the marginalized sector for which the code was enacted. They are meant to strengthen the cooperative movement by providing for transparent measures for members and officers of cooperatives.

He is also part of the bicameral debates on the Anti-Torture Act.

Accountability to the People
Senator Aquino actively participated in the hearings that investigated a number of reported scandals involving the alleged misuse of public funds, such as the ZTE-NBN deal, the Euro Generals and the Fertilizer Fund scam. These hearings brought to light the need for increased transparency and accountability in the disbursal of taxpayers’ money.

Integrity of the Senate
The series of scandals that stain the reputation of our government has also challenged the Senate of the Philippines as an institution. The recent attempts to amend the Constitution, for instance, have compelled our Senators, including Senator Aquino, to firmly assert their defiant stand on this issue.

Energy Sector
Senator Aquino has been vigilant in the hearings regarding the sale of TRANSCO and PNOC-EDC. Much of his time and energy was spent on the EPIRA and TRANSCO amendments, questioning the sale of revenue-generating assets prior to the privatization of key government corporations. Senator Aquino sought clarification as to whether the sales of these assets were part of a long-term energy development plan or not to ensure that the long-term impact of losing these assets have been considered prior to their sales.

National Integrity
Senator Aquino voted “NO” to the controversial JPEPA because he believed that the Filipino people deserved a better negotiated and mutually beneficial treaty.

VI. Institution builder
Last but not least, Senator Aquino has dedicated his life in public service to strengthening our democratic institutions. Principal among these is his commitment to a genuine party system in the Philippines, as reflected in his membership in and strong commitment to the Liberal Party.

• Executive Vice President, December 18, 2007 to present
• Vice Chairman, March 17, 2006 to December 17, 2007
• Secretary General, 2004 to March 16, 2006
• Vice-Pres. for Luzon, 2002-2004
• Secretary General, 1999-2002
• Chairman of the Board, Central Luzon Congressional Caucus

VII. Accomplishments as three-term member of the House of
Representatives:

A. Positions held

Deputy Speaker, 13th Congress

B. Committee Membership

13th Congress
• Banks & Financial Intermediaries
• Energy
• Export Promotion
• Public Order & Safety

12th Congress
• Civil, Political & Human Rights
• Good Government
• Inter-Parliamentary Relations & Diplomacy
• Public Order & Security

11th Congress
• Agriculture
• Appropriations
• Banks & Financial Intermediaries
• Civil, Political & Human Rights (Vice-Chairman)
• Natural Resources
• Peoples’ Participation
• Public Order & Security
• Suffrage and Electoral Reforms
• Trade & Industry
• Transportation & Communications

C. Priority Bills
• House Bill No. 4251 – granting annual productivity incentives to all workers in the private sector

• House Bill No. 4397 – strengthening the regulatory power of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to effectively enforce consumer laws

• House Bill No. 4252 – increasing the penalties for non-compliance of the prescribed increases and adjustments in the wage rates of workers

• House Bill No. 3616 – extending the reglementary period for the educational qualification for PNP members

• House Bill No. 1842 – providing for the codification of criminal laws

D. Resolutions
• House Resolution No. 65 – inquiry in aid of legislation into the policies and processes of the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) in granting rate increases to electric utilities

• House Resolution No. 788 – creating a select Congressional Oversight Committee on intelligence funds to check and study the use of intelligence funds by government agencies to ensure that funds allocated therefore are utilized for the purpose they are intended

E. Other legislation
a. Introduced an amendment in the General Appropriations Act requiring public bidding in the purchase of petroleum, oil and lubricant products for the Department of National Defense

 

Source: http://barriosiete.com/noynoy-aquinos-legislative-record/
Thanks to Barrio Siete and Reyna Elena

Source: http://celdrantours.blogspot.com/2009/09/this-is-what-noynoy-has-done.html
Thanks to Carlos Celdran.

Source: http://haringliwanag.pansitan.net/?p=809
Thanks to Jim Paredes.

You guys might like to check those links to read the original posters' articles. Some of them have even provoked a pretty lengthy, albeit at times circular, flame war. Still, a pretty decent read.