Friday, December 16, 2011

Pasko na pala?

Habang tumatagal, mas hindi ko na nadarama ang Pasko.  Am I turning into a Scrooge?  Hindi naman sana.  But I don't mind being visited by the three ghosts of time.  Maybe that is what i need.  A wake up call.

Or it might be just the weather.

Or the fact na next year due ang maraming papers and reports and mid-terms pa.

Hay ewan.

Sana 5pm na.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Dreams and Reality

Have you ever had a dream that you wish, upon waking up, that you can go back to and continue? I do. I have several. And although i can't remember the details, the feeling stays with me. They are not always happy dreams but they made me feel alive, even in my sleeping status. The emotions, though not real, lingers and make me yearn. If only some dreams can turn into reality. But maybe that's why they're just dreams... Because some things are just not meant to be, or shouldn't be.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Move On but Never Forget

Remember the cliche about forgetting so you can move on?  I realized that we shouldn't really forget our mistakes because if we do, we might end up doing it again.  Remembering our failures and shortcomings, I believe, would help us move on and be better.  Doing so will keep us on our toes.  Sometimes we need a constant reminder on why we are trying to do better, why we are trying to make ourselves better.  So when you find yourself remembering a negative past, maybe it's your mind's way of saying "Hey, remember when you did this?".  Pause for a while and reflect on where you are now.  Maybe in trying to forget the bad, you also forgot why you're trying to do good.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Why can't we get along?

I read an interview (I forgot what online article it was) of Maggie Q where she talked about her relationship with her on-screen love team Shane West and what struck me was she said something about being lucky that she's such good friends with West that it was fun working with him on the set.  She added that it was because she's not always that lucky with her partners.  It never entered my mind before to ask if cast members (i.e. tv series, movies) actually do get along with each other.  So now I am bothered with my discovery that the two main characters in one of the tv series that I love is not following each other on twitter.  It is sad because it's going to be their fifth season this year and I do love them both on tv.  I just wish that they're friends and there's a good and positive reason why they are not friends online.

On second thought, you don't always have to like your colleagues, right?  Preferably you should get along but then, i don't know. -_-

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Why Filipinos Lack Nationalism

This morning it dawned on me one possible reason why we Filipinos lack nationalism.  I think that we are too young as a country that it had not been fully imbedded yet in our "diwa" our being Filipinos.  Look at China for example.  Their history dates back to B.C. (Before Christ).  They experienced the ups and downs as a country for thousands of years already.  Now look at us.  We became aware of our existence as a country during barely half of the 20th century.  Even our country's name "Philippines" was derived from King Philip of Spain.  There was no unifying entity that held Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao together so we can call ourselves a country.  (Or is it because we didn't have good historians so we can only wonder what really went on before the Spaniards arrived?)

But enough with history.  Now I wonder why is it that we (and the rest of the world) have a lot of holidays (i.e. National Heroes Day, EDSA Day, Araw ng Kalayaan, UP 100 Years, Buwan ng Wika) but we don't have a day for celebrating our being a country (i.e. Philippines 500 years).  If we had The Day, I think it would be the biggest celebration every year (since it would be country-wide) and the second most exciting holiday (Christmas is the first).  Now THAT is a Party.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Prevention Is Better Than Cure

May demolisyon nanaman sa Quezon City.  At least when I heard about it this morning, all lanes of Commonwealth Avenue from after the Iglesia ni Kristo up to Fairview are closed because of the riot between the Old Balara residents and the demolition team.  Squatter's area pala yun, owned by the Madrigals.  Kung sana noon pa hindi na sila tumira doon, hindi sana sila paaalisin ngayon.  At kung noon pa sana ay pinagbawalan na silang tumira doon, hindi na kailangan pang pahirapan ang pagpapaalis sa mga residente doon.

This brings me to my next point. 

Kapag eleksyon bumibisita ang mga aspiring politicians sa squatters' areas pero not once may nagsabi na sisiguraduhin nila ang pananatili ng mga residente rito sa lugar nila.  Boto lang naman ang gusto nila.  Dapat kasi mabait sila dahil maraming taga-roon ang botante.  Then, pag nakuha na ang boto at hindi na pwedeng tumakbo ulit, kung anu-ano nang programa ang ipatutupad na di nila kayang ipatupad dati dahil sa takot na mawalan ng suporta.  A true leader makes unpopular decisions when it is for the good of the community.  Unpopular because you can never please everybody.  But when the community progresses, the people will thank you for it because in the end, everyone benefited and in a long-term duration.

Hay pulitika.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

My Summer of Love*

Warning:  Contains spoiler.  Not for the conservative and homophobes :)

Seeing Emily Blunt in The Adjustment Bureau made me decide to search for all the films that she is in.  I realized that she was actually Emily in The Devil Wears Prada but maybe because she was not her charming self in that movie, she did not make a mark in me.  Then I remembered that she was the princess in Gulliver's Travel but it was easy to overlook her there.  In Sunshine Cleaning (with Amy Adams), she was also really good (and no, she was not a lesbian in that movie).  Then from reading her biography, I came across this article that mentioned a movie that said opened more doors for her in the movie industry -- *My Summer of Love.  She was probably 21 at that time and together with Amanda Press.  I was a bit shocked with what I saw and I don't know if the culture I saw in the film is true even in my country.  But that's beside the point.  The following are my thoughts on the movie and answer to some of the questions posted in the movie discussion board in IMDb.

1.  Tamsin (Blunt) loved Mona (Press) but she had a lot going on inside her mind (and probably heart) that she lied (i.e. about her sister dying of anorexia) and did some other stuffs that the viewers can only wonder if it's real or not (i.e. Tamsin being interested in Phil).  Meanwhile, Mona might be the naive one in the relationship but she was pure and true.

2.  I don't know why someone asked what the ending of the movie was all about but here is my answer:  Mona was so angry with being lied to and manipulated that instead of answering, she tried to choke and drown Tamsin in the river but she did not intend to kill the latter.

3.  Too bad that Phil's newfound faith crumbled right before Mona realized that her brother was right in warning her off from Tamsin.

4.  Tamsin got a brilliant mind and sometimes so brilliant it's scary.  She should be checked by a psychiatrist.

All in all, Blunt gave a superb performance.  It's no wonder that she received an award that goes something like "Promising emerging new actress".  She should have more movies that will allow her to display her full potential as an actress.  I don't know why but I like her best in drama and not so much in comedy (although she's great anywhere).  Anyhow, I look forward to seeing more of her in the big screen and I hope it's soon. :)

*posters from

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Three things that made me smile yesterday

1.  It was so hot and I was so sweaty when i rode the Rockwell shuttle.  The driver probably took pity on me because he positioned his little fan so it was blowing in my path.  I said "Kuya ok lang po" to which he replied "Hindi, ok lang ma'am."

2.  It's not only the prices of goods sold in Power Plant that are "ibang level" but also the security guards.  When I entered the mall I opened my bag so the guard can check it.  He told me "Sige ma'am, go ahead."

3.  (Parang highschool lang.)  I was feeling anxious for the past few days because I might be the only one who submitted the complete assignment in one of my classes and I might be labeled as "hindi nakikisama".  Well, when the teacher returned the papers, not only was I not the only "bibo" person in class (there were 2 of us) but the prof graded my homework as well.

A lot of other things made me smile yesterday but these are what I consider as significant because it affected my disposition for the rest of the day.  Let's all be thankful for the little good things that happen to us because we often times forget that we always have a reason to be happy.

I wish I will remember the previous sentence when I feel sad ;-)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Dirty Yogurt*

My first attempt in eating yogurt was traumatic.  I bought a snack type yogurt (looks like nata de coco) but I spat out the first bite.  It's not the taste, it's the texture.  It's like eating clams and I don't like it.  Then I was introduced to the yogurt ice cream.  My mom bought one when we ate at a restaurant and I didn't like it too because it was sour.  But I really wanted to learn how to eat it because they say it's healthier than the usual ice cream (and I need to eat healthier food but I feel sad in giving up ice cream altogether).  Then last Sunday, my family and I discovered this new store called *Dirty Yogurt along Dona Soledad Avenue in Betterliving.  I am now a believer.  It tasted better, costs relatively cheaper, and the location is great because it's beside Army Navy.  So now I am excited to go back there and buy my own cup of yummy, yummy yogurt.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Me Day

At least once a month, I celebrate "Me Day".  There's no specific day but it's usually on a Saturday when I am not busy with work and school.  It's fun because I can do what I want and go where I want by myself.  I also indulge in things that I can't usually do/have because of time and financial constraints.  So yesterday I went to SM MOA because they have lots of bookstores.  I ate at Mexicali where I had the grilled vegetable buritto and it was so yummy I licked the juice off my fingers afterwards.  Then I went around looking for books (textbook and pocketbook) and window shopping for a coat and boots.  Unfortunately, I can't find plain boots anymore.  All we have now are those fashionable ones that is not practical in a tropical country like ours.  They also have very high heels, frills, holes by the toes, etc.  So I'm wondering if I need to call the warehouse of these shoe stores to inquire if they still have the plain, formal boots that I can use for work.

So going back, I think having a Me Day is a great plan to refresh yourself.  It's good to have at least one (or half day) when you can just run free and enjoy a stress-free existence.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

What I learn from little kids

During one of the Sagip* sessions I handled the activity was for the kids to learn a song and create their own actions.  While observing them I noticed that although I was 14-17 years older than them, they mirror some of the behavior of my generation.  Some kept talking to their teammates about non-related stuff, they do not listen while others are performing in front, they kept on practicing even though I told them to take their seats already, etc.  Not that I'm trying to put down my fellow elders.  I was just amused to realize that some things do not change even as we grow old.  Some do grow up to be more behave, more disciplined, or mature but there are things that might be hard to stop.

Another lesson I learned is that there are times when the output will not be what you expected.  Although I told them to create actions for the Hail Mary song, some asked if they can just perform other songs.  At first I tried to help them but in the end, I had to give in because I realized that if I wanted them to perform confidently, I have to let them feel comfortable and happy with what they are doing.  I mean, these are kids ages 6-12 and my role was to teach them something good.  So I let them do Papuri sa Diyos and Kordero ng Diyos and they were happy.  One group even had a repeat performance because they wanted to do better.  Maybe if I had insisted that they do the Hail Mary (they already had actions for it but decided to do Kordero ng Diyos instead), they would not have felt the need to exert their best effort.

Although I was a kid once like them, I think I have already forgotten what it was like to be one.  Maybe I better get in touch with my inner child so that I'll be able to connect with them and be a better Ate to them.

*Sagip is a volunteer program under the Gawad Kalinga which aims to teach kids ages 7-12 about good values, etc.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Why I no longer like syringes

     I think nurses who do injections should undergo rigid training.  My mom said I was brave as a kid.  She said that while kids cry or even scream while getting their shots, I was silent.  Then I grew up and had to be injected on by nurses who didn't do their job well.  Imagine this, I was undergoing MRI scanning and my whole body (head, arms, legs) was harnessed into the bed  Then after a few seconds, the medical team stopped, a nurse approached me and said "We'll have to inject you again because your vein ruptured."  If my hand was not tied to the bed, I would probably have done something I would regret (or not) someday.  In another situation, another nurse was trying to take blood sample and she stuck in and pulled out the syringe about 2 or 3 times and I felt my eyes popping out in disbelief.  If I wasn't too overwhelmed and scared I probably would have done something I would regret (or not) someday.

     So I think that nurses who do such tasks practice well or undergo re-training to make sure that no other patients will be traumatized with similar experiences.

One Earth

     I watched a documentary film called Earthlings.  It's about how humans use animals as Pets, for Food, Clothing, Entertainment, & Science.  Except for keeping animals as pets, the rest showed one thing:  cruelty to animals.  Using hidden cameras and videos from other "contributors", Earthlings vividly show what happens behind the curtains in preparing meat so we can eat, animal skin so we can have leather clothing, training animals so we'll enjoy the circus, and testing medicines & medical procedures so that sick humans can get better.

After watching the film I thought, so what now?  The film proposes 5 solutions and it says:

1.  Adopt from shelters.  Spay & neuter your pets.  Never buy from pet stores or breeders.
2.  Become a vegan.  Avoid animal products, including dairy and eggs.
3.  Stop wearing leather, fur, down & wool.
4.  Refuse to support animals in entertainment including circuses, zoos, rodeos, etc.
5.  Never buy products tested on animals.  Only support research where animals are not used.

I admit that it would be hard to follow all five solutions.  I remembered when I was still in school, we had brainstorming session in class on how to solve the jeepney-traffic problem in the Philippines.  Two recommendations that I remember were:  1) remove all jeepneys; or 2) transfer them to the provinces.  The problem with removing jeepneys totally is that thousands of Filipinos will lose their source of income.  The problem with transferring them to the provinces is that we might also have to transfer all the stakeholders (i.e. driver renting the jeep and the family).  The point is, a jeepney is a cultural symbol for the Filipinos.  It's deeply ingrained in our system that changes will be very difficult and will take a long time.  It's the same with, for example, turning vegan or not going to the circus or zoo.  The lives of many people are at stake i.e. dependents of the slaughterhouse employees, the circus trainers, the zoo caretakers, etc.  I'm not saying that it's impossible, it's just that it's going to be very, very hard and would require all humans to work together.

To watch the film, copy & paste this link to your browser:

Be warned that although the film is for everyone to see, not everyone will like it.    There were times when I flinched and closed my eyes because looking at the gory truth is difficult.  It's no wonder the film is not shown in the mainstream theaters.  But change begins with awareness and I hope that after watching this film, there will be even a tiny change in you.  Tiny changes can go a long way.  Maybe we won't be able to enjoy the results in our lifetime but at least the future generations can.