Thursday, June 21, 2007

15 seen below

Heat + references to friends' homes + dreams

I have been trying not to complain about the heat in Manila. I'm thinking, It's Manila. What do you expect? The operative word is "trying." It's hard not to complain when the heat saps all of my energy and keeps me from doing anything productive. Surely, this heat is beyond normal.

In the Inquirer today, Conrado deQuiros writes that global warming "is not an environmental issue, (but a) survival issue."


Here is a product of a long MRT ride. I put together obscure references to my friends' homes:

My friend Zye lives in Carmona, Makati. There was this beer commercial (San Miguel, I think) where a guy takes his friends out for drinks and realizes that he forgot his wallet at home. He tells his friends he has to go and get it. As he leaves, one of his guests inquires after him:

Friend 1: Saan ba nakatira si (let's call him...) Eugene?
Friend 2: Sa Carmona.
Friend 1: Makati.
Friend 2: Hinde! Sa Carmona, Cavite!
Everyone in the beerhouse (in shocked tones): sa CAVITE?!!

My other Baguio friends live in Marikina, Metro Manila. The other evening, Nicole took me to Riverbanks Mall where we were to buy the ingredients for that night's dinner of fake crab and pechay. We finished our business at the supermarket and decided to look around for a bit. Apparently, Nicole had a surprise for me. At the very end of that stretch of mall is a shoe store that houses the World's Largest Shoes.
(Photo taken from the blog Welcome to my World by navigate53. Included in the post Explore Philippines: Marikina City.)
Incidentally, I am still homeless. My father didn't enjoy the idea of me living in a windowless room. I am currently shuttling back and forth between my lolo's house in Makati and Marikina. I'm living out of a suitcase. Very rockstar, but also very inconvenient. If you guys might point me in the direction of a cheap room for rent near Diliman, it would be most appreciated.
Last night, I dreamed that I revealed all of Maika's secrets through a text message. Apparently, I was exhausted and didn't know what I was texting. It was almost as if I was drunk. In my dream, I woke up (yeah, I woke up in the dream) with a bad feeling. I looked in my Sent Items and found I had texted all of Maika's deepest, darkest (Eh?) secrets to a certain Chloe. (I think the name Chloe stuck because last night, before I left Marikina for Makati, the people there were watching Match Point. Emily Mortimer's character's name was Chloe.) Maika, do you know anyone named Chloe? If not, we're good. Besides, in the dream, you forgive me. I give you a peace offering - a book called Myths Retold.

Read more: While searching for an article about the World's Largest Shoes, I found this site which includes some World Records the Philippines has acquired. Check out the Largest Loot in History. Thievery in high places. Very amusing.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

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Hey everyone. A quick one. In the MRT, I noticed a tall man slouching and I realized there are some people who are so tall, they're not sure what to do with all that height. Reminds me of a high school friend who grew up too quickly, she also compensated for her newfound height by hunching over. I wish they'd share. I'm so short that when I sit next to someone on the MRT, my shoulder fits snugly under their sweaty armpits. Gross.

Help! This sem, I'll be going to Internet shops to get my blog fix. I'm not sure how to keep up with all the new entries. Do you guys know if there's an online feed aggregator/reader I could use while using a computer in a shop?

Roger dropped of Halle. He says it's to reduce risk of injury. If you ask me, he's depressed about losing the French (Read more). Howard Fendrich says Roger needs to wallow. I agree. It's part of the healing process, says Billy Crystal in the Analyze This movies.

More soon. Lots to write about. Lunch with Emil. Bye!

P.S. Loved your jeepney comments. Isn't it great how one bad experience makes us all band together? :) Thanks for taking the time to comment. I promise, I'll be returning the favor soon.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

10 seen below

And the events today are...

I updated my top ten emerging influential blogs of 2007 list (that was a mouthful). Be sure to check that out. If you haven’t seen the rest of the list, munch on that too. Blog hopping is a worthy hobby because: (a) you read all sorts of interesting things about all sorts of kooky characters; (b) if you are suffering from malaise and stuck in a slump, other people’s blogs get your creative juices flowing again; and (c) it’s great to laugh. Thank god for blogs.


The other day on my way home, the jeepney I was riding on nearly fell on its side. PUJ drivers find a certain pleasure in cooking up clever ways to beat the traffic. My driver wanted to break a couple of Physics laws and squeezed our ride into an almost non-existent sliver of road. He didn’t notice that the rotonda (with the big Christmas tree at the foot of Session Road) we were just passing was breaking a couple of Physics laws itself. It came out of nowhere. He drove right over one of its corners, and the jeep tilted precariously to the left. I was sitting on the right side, so I was the one who got thrown around. The two other girls opposite me just got a front-row seat to witness my temporary departure from gravity. I don’t get embarrassed by that sort of thing, but I was incensed when I saw the plastic bag carrying my santol was ripped. One of them could have fallen out, for chrissake. My bag also found its way violently to the floor, but was returned by one of my audience. It was an interactive show.

My heart was beating out of my chest, but I didn’t show any outward sign of being rattled. Those two other girls were lucky, because they could laugh and talk about it afterwards. They even had a little role play going about who could make the best walang reaction face. She was sitting across from them. I had to prematurely shrug the whole ordeal off and comfort myself by hugging my santol a little tighter. The driver, on the other hand, looked mortified and kept knocking on his rearview mirror, probably wishing it was wood. His colleagues were sniggering in their own front seats. They’re harsh. And we were still stuck in traffic.


I saw Ocean’s 13 yesterday and I have to admit, sequels sure are getting better. It was a good decision to bring them back to Vegas for this one. The humor was sharp, not like Ocean’s 12, where they were trying too hard. There was wit and cleverness, and the slapstick wasn’t too shabby either. Lately, it seems complicated plots are rubbing me the right way. Like the two other Ocean’s flicks, this one had the trademark planning and scheming…and canoodling (yeah, there was canoodling c/o a Cyrano-ed Matt Damon). I’m not sure if this one beats out the first, but it certainly leaves the second one in the dust.

I’m taking it slow today. It’s time to enjoy the ease of Baguio life while I can. Tomorrow, it’s off to the sweltering heat of Manila.

Lei and our other nursing friends are taking the Board exam today. They need our mojo. Channel, people!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

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Top Ten Emerging Influential Bloggers of 2007

Update, June 10, 2007 - I know I said I didn't have any time to finish the list, but now I do. These are the blogs occupying the remaining four spots on my list.

7. Fruity Oaty – I like the random-ness of it all. In Finding Forrester when William Forrester edits Jamal Wallace’s journals, he writes “Where are you taking me?” That’s exactly how one feels with Massa P.’s posts, and what a grand way to get lost.

8. Nick (Untold Pinoy Stories) – I don’t know where Nick the Author gets his very provocative stuff, but his blog is better than E! True Hollywood Stories. Talk about cracks in the parchment. Throw away your television, because this is the 4-1-1. And it’s written with such panache, I could cry.

9. Kikong Kalikot (Pinoy at ang kanyang musika) – The writer of this blog advocates for World and Earth music and tips readers to check out cool music events. If it’s a blog about music, then it’s okay in my book. Then I kept reading. I have an inkling that he might think music is the answer to depression. *That* makes the blog even more worthwhile.

10. Kubiyat (Baguio Below) – Ah, what the hell. It’s just like voting for the Pirate King with the eight other pirate lords. Savvy?


Janette Toral came up with a great writing project to generate a list of the Top Ten Emerging Influential Bloggers of 2007. This is my contribution to the effort. I would have liked to complete a top ten, but time has not been on my side. The blogosphere is boundless, and I've barely scratched the surface. The blogs I include here are some of my favorites and fit the bill.

1. Lei (Cheese to go with my whine*) – When I hang out with Lei, I get to indulge the kid in me. Her blog is a lasting testament to all things only our inner child would admit to liking.

2. Paolo Mendoza (The Philosophical Bastard) – I can’t stay away from a blog whose author kills Peter Pan, laments the impotence of the most important piece in chess and obsesses about immortality.

3. JJ Junio (Unsent) – This is where I get my politics fix. It’s not something I normally talk about, but he makes the whole thing rather enjoyable.

4. Utakgago – I only started reading his blog, but get the impression that he *writes.* Who does that anymore? On one post, he ended with a post-script: “Nyeta, minamadali ako ng tatay at ate kong maligo. Sorry kung bitin or may mga errors. Promise i-rerecheck ko to!" That pretty much got me sold. I like people who edit their work.

5. Alternati (Sarcasm Aside) (Unfortunately, I have to take Sarcasm Aside out of the list since it started before August 2006. It's still a great read, though, so mosey on along over there and enjoy!) I found her blog a couple of weeks ago, and was strangely drawn to a blogger who might harbor ill-feelings towards Roger. I kept reading to find out that she’s from Baguio and a big TV buff. Anyone from Baguio and likes tennis is a friend of mine.

6. Eloiski – Naaliw ako sa post niya tungkol sa mga bagay na kina-aadikan niya. At dahil iiyakan pa niya ang anime, bentang-benta nako sa blog niya. Tapos malaman-laman ko pang takot siyang makahawak ng butterfly dahil ito ay nakakabulag. Totoo 'yon.

7. Poli (Gagopolis) – I share his addiction to The French Open and extremely enjoyed the post where he recounts stuffing a tabloid down his underpants.

Friday, June 1, 2007

7 seen below

Don't sweat it

Just got back from Manila last night. I managed to find a room and get my admission slip over at the College of Science. Boo-yah!

I'm having second thoughts about my room, though. It's cheap, but incredibly cramped. I was told to call it "cozy." But really, it's cramped. When people ask me to describe it, I say it's like Harry Potter's cupboard under the stairs. There isn't a window either. I wonder if a fan is enough to conquer the heat. Or one day, I just don't wake up. I get baked alive in an oven for a room. That is a very messy way to die. *knocking on wood*

The lady at the CS Graduate Office was very nice but raised an eyebrow at me when I couldn't produce the original copy of my transcript. I didn't think I would have to bring it anymore, since I'd already sent in a copy (I had to grit my teeth through all the threes and fours) with my application. Despite that, I don't think our relationship has soured. I feel she and I have struck up the beginning of a very fruitful friendship. (Anyway, the next time I see her, I'll have my OTR.)

My friend Joyce was kind enough to accompany me all over campus to get things done. I noticed that apart from her and me, everyone else seemed fresh and unbothered by the heat. The both of us had sweat running down the sides of our faces and we were sticky icky. How girls in Manila keep their faces oil- and sweat- free is an impressive feat.

The girls who've been in Manila long enough to unlock the secrets to sweatless skin look as if they'd just come out of the shower. Whereas there are the other girls who might as well have beads of sweat on their foreheads forming the words "I'm not from around here." You can tell who's used to the heat and who isn't. It's a strange dichotomy.

Joyce and I were talking and have decided that the reason girls from Baguio sweat more is because our pores feel deprived. Pores aren't vestigial organs merely awaiting their evolutionary end. So in a hot place, they tend to overreact. They are desperate to show that they are actually worth keeping around. In Joyce's best singsong voice, the pores cry: "Yey, useful na kami!"

Another friend Aimee thinks the reason for all the sweat is the six-hour exposure to airconditioning on the bus traveling from Baguio to Manila. The airconditioning sucks all the sweat to the surface. Or something like that. By the time you get to Manila, all the sweat just overflows to the surface.

Got a better theory about where all the sweat is coming from? Let's hear it, friend!
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