Friday, April 29, 2005


First, the real one. Former Philvolcs chief and current PNRC governor Punongbayan was killed when the helicopter he was riding crashed. Most everyone else on the chopper also perished, including people I think were close to my aunt, former executive secretary for the Red Cross. It's sad when people die in war, and even worse when people die in projects such as this, as they were on their way to survey sites for the Red Cross when the craft crashed in Nueva Ecija. God rest their souls.

Now, for the more flippant side... Unfortunately for millions of gurls, smoldering idol Constantine Maroulis has been booted out of American Idol. Sorry Bespren D and Appleby. Nins and I really thought that Scott would go. And then when it was down to Anthony the Wonderboy and Constantine, I really thought A-Fed would go. But it was Constantine. Where were his legions of fans? Did they get tired of voting? We were really hoping for a Bo-Con showdown in the final two (hihgly unlikely but we could dream). No matter, I believe that Constantine will enjoy his moment of fame--further fame, post-Idol. Just hope it doesn't disappoint like Tamyra Gray's career. That girl could still go places, though.

Things are not yet back to normal. I haven't caught up on other people's blogs. Just dropped by Fast Fingers to see what was up. G-boy's Fables 3 and 4 are also with me, but I haven't had time to finish them (of course I already read 3-Storybook Love, because Snow and Bigby are gonna get it on! haha!). IntlConsultingFirm and I are locked in negotations and it looks pretty favorable... a 25% increase for a lateral move with opportunities for travel looks good indeed. No overtime pay, though. Ha! Will be in seclusion for the next few days because I have an exam coming up on May 9. If all goes well, this might be my last exam for the industry org--because I'd then be shifting industries. Oh well. Who knows? Fingers crossed.

Last Song Syndrome : How You Remind Me - Constantine Maroulis

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

rob and amber... ang bidang kontrabida

The New York Times > Arts > Television > On TV, Reality Loves a Villain

I have fun watching Romber romp through The Amazing Race 7. They are scheming, conniving, manipulative, and also very street-smart, think fast on their feet and have a good grasp of psychology. I can't say I'm not rooting for them to win, because of the remaining teams (aside from Joyce's voluntary head-shaving) I think they deserve to win. Go Romber!

Sunday, April 24, 2005

one night in bangkok

Am logging this in from an overpriced internet cafe at our hotel (technically, a serviced bed-and-breakfast, really). The past two days have gone by in a blur, and tomorrow the zeester and I are flying back around noon. Between shopping and temples, we are definitely exhausted. Just logged on tonight to check on the ex-SO (!) and send some messages. Just realized that people younger than a certain age will not recognize the title of this blog. Hee! A sign of aging.

So far, Bangkok has been sweltering heat, paranoia re: con artists, wondrous temples, hearing Filipino at the strangest places, lots of ice(!), Buddhist monks in the street, different kinds of ferry rides, really cheap clothes+bags+shoes, wondrous temples, photo-ops, and did I mention the sweltering heat? Hee!

One night in Bangkok

Bangkok, Oriental setting
And the city don't know what the city is getting
The creme de la creme of the chess world in a
Show with everything but Yul Brynner

Time flies -- doesn't seem a minute
Since the Tirolean spa had the chess boys in it
All change -- don't you know that when you
Play at this level there's no ordinary venue

It's Iceland -- or the Philippines -- or Hastings -- or --
or this place!

One night in Bangkok and the world's your oyster
The bars are temples but the pearls ain't free
You'll find a god in every golden cloister
And if you're lucky then the god's a she
I can feel an angel sliding up to me

One town's very like another
When your head's down over your pieces, brother

It's a drag, it's a bore, it's really such a pity
To be looking at the board, not looking at the city

Whaddya mean? Ya seen one crowded, polluted, stinking town --

Tea, girls, warm, sweet
Some are set up in the Somerset Maugham suite

Get Thai'd! You're talking to a tourist
Whose every move's among the purest
I get my kicks above the waistline, sunshine

One night in Bangkok makes a hard man humble
Not much between despair and ecstasy
One night in Bangkok and the tough guys tumble
Can't be too careful with your company
I can feel the devil walking next to me

Siam's gonna be the witness
To the ultimate test of cerebral fitness
This grips me more than would a
Muddy old river or reclining Buddha

And thank God I'm only watching the game -- controlling it --

I don't see you guys rating
The kind of mate I'm contemplating
I'd let you watch, I would invite you
But the queens we use would not excite you

So you better go back to your bars, your temples, your massage
parlours --

One night in Bangkok and the world's your oyster
The bars are temples but the pearls ain't free
You'll find a god in every golden cloister
A little flesh, a little history
I can feel an angel sliding up to me

One night in Bangkok makes a hard man humble
Not much between despair and ecstasy
One night in Bangkok and the tough guys tumble
Can't be too careful with your company
I can feel the devil walking next to me

Wednesday, April 20, 2005


An ultimate geek and keeper of a multitude of my secrets, JDJ goes online (finally!) with aftermath. Meanwhile, J&J's wedding site is here.

Monday, April 18, 2005

back in business

Office internet is back up. I just hope NewTechDude doesn't go all dictatorial and take it away again (especially since I went through a few weeks' worth of LJ backlog today). Blogging from the office. Just like the old days.

Spending more waking hours at the office than anywhere else is taking its toll. I just realized this a while ago, when I used the restroom and started unzipping my pants before entering the cubicle. Feh. What the hell was that?

my inner European

Your Inner European is Italian!

Passionate and colorful.

You show the world what culture really is.

Last Song Syndrome : Linger - The Cranberries


80% off on imported pocketbooks at Goodwill. I bought five, therefore, for the price of one. Stocked up on those strange collections of sci-fi stories that I only find in Goodwill, adding KnightFantastic and PharaohFantastic to my CastleFantastic, CatFantastic, and other titles. Also got Single White Vampire Seeks Same (been eyeing that for a while) as well as a Harry Turtledove book (Departures) and Secrets of the Ancient Goddess. Brain candy.

Here's the book meme I got from g!
you're stuck inside fahrenheit 451, which book do you want to be?
Why would I want to be stuck inside Fahrenheit 451? Well if I would burn for being a
book, it would have to be either as the Bible (seriously!) or, on a less serious note, it would have to be The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Wala lang, fun.

have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?
Of course... Legolas Greenleaf (based on a special edition illustration in 1991); then of course there's Sirius Black; and Jules Bartolome (and then Piolo went and played him and all was lost). And Spike. Nuff said.

the last book you bought is:
@BookSale: Sense of Evil by Kay Hooper, per aurie_slayer's recommendation
@PowerBooks: Irish Girls About Town
@Goodwill: see above

the last book you've read:
I hate to admit it but it's The Time Traveller's Wife. I haven't had much time to read... :(

[Too lazy to look for links now.]
what are you currently reading:
A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson, Irish Girls About Town

what will you be reading next:
It's on the list at the right -->
[And then, if the G-boy lends me his new Fables books (and I agree, graphic novels are books), those would be next on the list. Whee!]

next 5 books on your To Buy list:
1. Collected Stories by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
2. Stardust by Neil Gaiman
3. Amber and Ashes by Margaret Weis
4. Friends: The One with All Ten Years
5. The Gospel of Mary Magdalene

five books you would take to a deserted island:
1. Robinson Crusoe
1. Einstein's Dreams by Alan Lightman
2. Ulysses by James Joyce (I might finally get to finish it there)
3. Books that Changed the World (I know, I'm cheating)
4. One Hundred Years of Solitude
5. the Harry Potter series (including the upcoming Half-Blood Prince)... hey if g! can bring the entire Sandman series...
[wala bang Complete Idiot's Guide to Surviving on a Desert Island?]

who will you pass this quiz to:

Saturday, April 16, 2005

it's all over but the haggling

IntlConsultingFirm said in no uncertain terms that they wanted me on board. We are haggling though because although StingyCo is StingyCo, it is also JP, Maleen, Rea, Direk, Dencio, Helen-a, Bang, JennyVi, Lei, Cath, Kath, Bunsoy... not to mention pension vesting, profit sharing, and something that has been very comfy for the last five years. This requires a great deal of thought. There are some things that a rightly nice compensation package cannot compensate (hee!) for. Shyaks.

Last Song Syndrome : Bulong - Kitchie Nadal

Friday, April 15, 2005

Thursday, April 14, 2005

for the first time

I actually thought Constantine gave a better performance than Nick Stahl Bo. He had a little Faramir thing going with the hair too. These two guys are both my age, huh. That's a thought. And we are as old as Lynyrd Skynyrd's Free Bird and Bohemian Rhapsody. I think Bo's going to be in the bottom 3 this week. I hope I'm proven wrong. Bottom 3 forecast: Nadia, Carrie and Bo... three of my early favorites. But Appleby, I'm still not rooting for your lust-object Constantine.

the big break
CSI Las Vegas' night shift is officially broken up. This was a good episode. And of course Jason London was guilty. Guy as cute as that...? Well, next week's episode looks like it's going to rock. That Ecklies dude is such a snake. Hee!

the little boy chronicles
Little Boy suddenly had to go to the province because it was BigShotTito's birthday and he had to drive his political parentals (nice ring!). Apparently he had forgotten about this when he said he would come with me to J's party on Friday. It's not that it's going to be difficult to get there; it only throws a wrench on some plans. Well. No expectations. And be prepared for curveballs.

Last Song Syndrome : Eternal Flame - M.Y.M.P.

Monday, April 11, 2005

my sister, the lawyer

Bar exam results came out late Friday afternoon and squashed among the throng at the Supreme Court was 85-pound zeester#1. She passed.

The Bangkok trip we planned a while back now becomes celebration#1, while celebration#2 is still being planned. Apparently it's going to be a rather big event, somewhere along the lines of my initial plans for my wedding with ex-S.O. Haha. Seriously, since I will probably be event coordinator, I am not amused.

Last Song Syndrome : Harana - Parokya ni Edgar

Thursday, April 07, 2005

work is a four-letter word

The other day, I played hooky. Even if I'm not actively searching for other employment, I went on a job interview at IntlConsultingFirm, which, should negotiations fall through, will up my annual compensation by a significant 30 percent. After the interview, which ended by 3pm, I met with Mader at Greenbelt 3, and stayed there until 7:45pm, when the zeester was to be picked up from her nearby office. That was almost five hours of... bumming around, consuming a ton of nicotine and balancing that (!) with fruit juice, bemoaning the lack of eye candy, watching the set-up for the Ayala Merchant Awards and Sybil doing a soundcheck. It was a whole lot of fun. I've been doing that a lot lately, bumming around: going on leave for interviews, half-days off to help with the preparations for that golden founding anniversary thingy, going home early to see the little boy, chatting 'til the wee hours of the morning, staying up to visit graveyard shifters or watch the American Idol and CSI replays, leaving home in the nick of time and sometimes actually being late for work (a rarity, for those who know my working hours and my supposed-morning-person-ness).

Whereas I regularly log about 15 to 20 hours of overtime within a month, this month I've so far only logged two. I know that the lady in Sales is doing all she can to stop herself from wringing my neck because of an issue we have not yet resolved. There are outstanding items to which I haven't replied, something I could not have imagined myself doing a few months ago (yes, employee of the year and all that crap). Some aspects of work have definitely deteriorated and become bland for me; aside from the internet withdrawal symptoms, the eyestrain from countless hours in front of the monitor here and at home, the growing dependence on caffeine and nicotine, and the frequent trips to 7-Eleven for junk food trips, work has even become quite unhealthy. I would rather veg out in front of the TV or re-arrange my room yet again than work sometimes. Heck, most of the time.

I know: I'm whining. And I'm bored. I sure hope it's just a phase that will dissipate soon. The thing is, for the past few years, I've let my work define me; and it goes against everything that I believe, in totality, in spirit. It doesn't help my self-esteem that my work pretty much sucks sometimes. [I believe] I'm underpaid but I haven't done anything concrete about it, until of course this series of interviews with IntlConsultingFirm. If anything, I've been complacent, mainly because I've grown accustomed to and comfortable with the motley blend of camaraderie, eccentricity, bellyaching and mirth that I experienced everyday here at StingyCo--Reg's antics, Pretty Girl's cute kasungitan, JP's obsessions, cigarette breaks with Direk. Sometimes a bright idea or a novel project comes along and I attack it with gusto, and at those times, I love my work. I would work without being paid... er, no, not really. They say that if you could find work that you love enough to do without getting paid and actually get paid for it would be perfection. Meanwhile, I find that to do the things that I would love to do, I still have to work the daily grind, and work hard at it. Come to think of it, it's not that bad--only, I have to remember that I am not my work, and I am much more than this.

Things to remember when I'm feeling this way:
  • I am not my work.
  • Have I offered my workday to God today? If so, what is this crap I'm offering?
  • There is that exhilarating spark upon the completion of certain projects or tasks that makes me feel real (ala-Velveteen Rabbit).
  • Despite everything, this job keeps food on our table and SkyCable on our TVs.
  • Going on leave sometimes and just fooling around are essential to remaining sane.
  • Remaining sane is not essential to working, but rather is essential to enjoying life.
  • Despite all the whining, I know that it is in me to make the most of where I am and what I'm doing now. Sometimes I just forget.

    Last Song Syndrome : Leaving You Now - Session Road
    [Again, another song applicable to the little boy.]
  • Tuesday, April 05, 2005

    remembering the vinyl

    When I was a kid, we had a turntable (which self-respecting music lover didn't? so my dad had one). The turntable would alternate with the television; one of the two was always on. In between his LPs of Matt Monro, Engelbert Humperdinck, ABBA, and Shirley Bassey, they would play songs for me too. By the time I was in first grade, I had memorized the multiplication tables because of this series of 45s (the small vinyl records, with the bigger holes, the ones that you had to have that plastic attachment to play--I have to explain for the younger generation?), this series of 45s that each had 1 multiplication table. And so each day I would go through at least three numbers. It was pretty catchy, and up to now I can still recall that sing-song chanting of "six times one equals six"...

    Another album that they used to play was something like Children's Songs from Around the World. This song was one of my favorites, and at least by the time I was five, I knew what a solar plexus was:
    O Senor Don Gato was a cat.
    On a high red roof Don Gato sat.
    He was there to read a letter,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    where the reading light was better,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    'Twas a love-note for Don Gato!

    "I adore you," wrote the ladycat,
    who was fluffy white, and nice and fat.
    There was not a sweeter kitty,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    in the country or the city
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    and she said she'd wed Don Gato!

    O Senor Don Gato jumped with glee!
    He fell off the roof and broke his knee,
    broke his ribs and all his whiskers,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    and his little solar plexus
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    "Ay Caramba!!" cried Don Gato.

    All the doctors they came on the run,
    just to see if something could be done.
    And they held a consultation,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    about how to save their patient,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    how to save Senor Don Gato.

    But in spite of everything they tried,
    poor Senor Don Gato up and died.
    No, it wasn't very merry,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    going to the cemetary,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    for the ending of Don Gato.

    But as the the funeral passed the market square,
    such a smell of fish was in the air,
    though the burial was plated,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    he became reanimated,
    - (meow, meow, meow)
    he came back to life, Don Gato!

    And so multiplication tables and a reanimated cat, not to mention a whole lot of ABBA, were an integral part of my formative years. Wonderful. I can see what that got me.

    Monday, April 04, 2005

    farewell, john paul ii

    In 1981, John Paul II made his first papal visit to the Philippines. My sister had just been born and looked like a little Caucasian siopao: we joked that the Santo Papa was her grandfather. During the World Youth Day celebrations, we camped out at Roxas to catch a glimpse of him and hear him say Mass.

    The world mourns the passing of a great man. It is the end of an era, and the Roman Catholic Church has lost one of its greatest Popes. Some say it was like losing a family member, a beloved patriarch. The Lord has called back his shepherd—we are all mortal, after all—but in the end, Karol Wojtyla became one of the world's greatest men, who became the staunch, reforming, unifying leader of a sometimes-wavering faith, and he will always be remembered as such. He was the only Pope I knew, and his impact on the church and on individual lives will be felt for ages to come.

    Last Song Syndrome : the Breakfast theme

    Saturday, April 02, 2005

    when it comes to little boys

    Sometimes it's hard but I think I'm learning: Don't expect. Don't assume. Don't give in. Don't let yourself fall.

    Had a good evening with the little boy. Made up for the fiasco yesterday. If I don't over-think, I actually have fun.

    Last Song Syndrome : that last Christina Milian (a.k.a. Linda Moon) song from Be Cool