Search and You Shall Find in My World

29 January 2009

It doesn't pay to be kind

I was very hungry this afternoon and decided to go to KFC at SM City Cebu. For all to know, I am a great fan of KFC for their food and good service. Just by scanning on what to order made my mouth water. 

When it was my turn, I ordered 2 pieces spicy chicken and a large Mountain Dew. I asked the girl at the counter to please, please give me any other part of the chicken except the leg portion. I mentioned to her I just don't like those parts. (It reminds me of chubby girls with fat legs. Imagine chomping on them.)

It became a problem. She told me they were not allowed to pair large (it was not large, my portion) with another large size. I told her to choose the smallest but never to select the leg part. She has to ask their manager first. O my God! I was flabbergasted! How many times I've been ordering like this and I never encountered a problem.

Instead of showing my irritation, I waited. I remembered the adage to be kind to people that served you. You know the rules. Get angry with them and they do something weird to your food.

Later she came back with a drumstick on my plate. I just smiled. My smile maybe has sarcasm on it and she saw it. She returned the item and finally was served right.

And meanwhile I read this news report-

By Erika Sauler
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 00:09:00 01/29/2009

MANILA, Philippines – Miguel Olaybar helped a man settle his bills in a karaoke bar and got stab wounds instead of a thank you in return.

Police said Olaybar, 26, was having a drink with his nephew at Marina Videoke Bar in Tondo Tuesday night when he noticed another customer who was having problems at the cashier.

Noting he was a fellow Visayan, Olaybar offered to pay his bills. The suspect refused but Olaybar still settled his bills then left.

But they went back shortly to have another round of drink. The suspect, who was still there, suddenly stabbed Olaybar with a fan knife.

The assailant fled on foot after the incident. Olaybar described him as sporting a long hair, about 5’4” tall and 26 to 27 years old.

Olaybar was brought to a hospital for treatment of stab wounds at the right shoulder and armpit.

The world has become so weird indeed!

Catbalogan's street kids

If you have nothing good to say- blog it!

From afar, Catbalogan is just one of the cities of the Philippines. Ordinary, laid back, nothing more. But when you are at the center of all of Catbalogan, the experience is entirely frustrating if not yucky.

The city (by all standards it is not!) is a place where everyone, from children down to standbys in the corner, from the padyak drivers to students and professionals, is a big wastebasket case. And I mean a real waste basket. If it is not clear enough to you- the place is a garbage lot. A big one. 

People (read- everyone!) just throw their waste just about everywhere! Streets. Open sewer. The sea.

I don't know if it is a cultural thing but they do and blatantly do it! Sometimes I consider Warays to be the dirty citizens of the world. But there is Tacloban too, and by affiliation, they are Warays, too. I bet they would protest! But Calbayog (also Warays) is just like that, throwing garbage everywhere, six or seven years ago, my last visit to the place.

I could have shoot several proofs on this matter but it would make myself unclean and I don't want to remember that.

One time, in one of the visits to Catbalogan, that city (which is not a city by all standards, I repeat) a whole mountain of garbages (sic, to make my point clear) could be found everywhere. The problem? The city government and the provincial government could not agree on whose responsibility it was to collect the garbage. Isn't that weird?

And Warays on that side of the world seemed to be at home with dirt and everything dirty! Ewww!

28 January 2009


Minsan sa may Kalayaan tayo'y nagkatagpuan
May mga sariling gimik at kaya-kanyang hangad sa buhay
Sa ilalim ng iisang bubong
Mga sekretong ibinubulong
Kahit na anong mangyari
Kahit na saan ka man patungo

Ngunit ngayon kay bilis maglaho ng kahapon
Sana'y huwag kalimutan ang ating mga pinagsamahan
At kung sakaling gipitin ay laging iisipin
Na minsan tayo ay naging
Tunay na magkaibigan
Minsan ay parang wala nang bukas sa buhay natin
Inuman sa magdamag na para bang tayo'y mauubusan
Sa ilalim ng bilog na buwan
Mga tiyan nati'y walang laman
Ngunit kahit na walang pera
Ang bawat gabi'y anong saya

Minsan ay hindi ko na alam ang nangyayari
Kahit na anong gawin
Lahat ng bagay ay merong hangganan
Dahil ngayon tayo ay nilimot ng kahapon
Di na mapipilitang buhayin ang ating pinagsamahan
Ngunit kung sakaling mapadaan baka
Ikaw ay aking tawagan
Dahil minsan tayo ay naging
Tunay na magkaibigan...

[Eraserheads will be having another reunion concert this March 2009! and I am hoping the group will savor once again the friendship they used to have. How about a group hug? ]

Wordless Blog

24 January 2009

Taking risks

I have to confess. I am not a risk taker. In fact I'm the most coward of all cowards I've known in the world. My world, to be safe. I procrastinate all the time.

When I worked for the government in 1989 or so, I was a casual employee for years. I was a college dropout and my immediate supervisors maybe could not find me a position my course being AB Philosophy. Later when HR finally got the Computer Programmer position, I didn't tell them I don't have a bachelor's degree. It was not a calculated risk. It was lying.

After 10 years of being a regular employee I resigned to save myself from the consequences of my lie.

I was jobless and was not planning to get my savings from GSIS, Pagibig, etc. So much paper work. Someday, I said. So I was basically broke when I came to Cebu.

Cebu has lots to offer being an urban center, has more opportunities than Bohol. So I settled here. It was a risk but I didn't know that. I was relying on dole-outs from friends and acquaintances. Cebu has taught me how to live on the edge of a sword.

Almost always I didn't have a decent meal for days or weeks. I nibbled bites on bread to sustain myself and followed it with lots of water because it was the only thing free. I holed myself up in my room so I would not spend a peso, which was nonexistent, by the way.

In one of the saddest and lowest times of my life, I almost took it so I could rest from the internal pain. Both my arms were already bleeding when my housemates intervened, saving me from further destruction.

I haven't seen the beauty of life.

But then friends helped me out, literally dragging me out of my drab environment.

I changed apartments. I used my network to look for a job. I hooked up with friends. Started blogging. Travelled.

Yes, I still owe money from friends who helped me setup OrangeSun. I will pay them of course. Yes, I still don't eat regular meals. I'm getting used to it. My life is basically different now.  But one thing is sure- life is good to me.

I am now involved in a relationship that I would fight to keep it forever. I am in love!

As what Frances Leflowitz wrote- Believe you have a say in your destiny rather than being dominated by your circumstances. In that way, every chance we take teaches us something about ourselves.

from Worth the Risk, Why taking a chance may be more important than you think by Frances Lefkowitz

follow your desire, not your fear To take a risk is to accept a challenge, not to act foolishly or carelessly. Find things that make you feel slightly uncomfortable but still intrigue and excite you. Pick one to pursue. Don't throw yourself into it all at once; start with the bunny slopes- sing for your friends, say, rather than audition for a band. Take it step by step, backing down a level if you feel panicked rather than excited.

enjoy the ride One of the benefits of risk-taking is simply that it's fun. Discover new opportunities to awaken your senses and enjoy something for its own pleasurable sake.
  • Try a new sport or activity that appeals to you, like in-line skating, windsurfing, or scaling a climbing wall at the gym.
  • Go skinny-dipping.
  • Break out your wardrobe rut, and wear something out of character.
  • Chat up an attractive stranger.
  • Forgo your usual lunch and order something you've never tasted before.
  • Give your hairstylist free rein with the scissors, and totally change your look.
  • Treat yourself to a solo dinner in a nice restaurant.

23 January 2009

Wordless Post

Quote from Wanggo Gallaga on The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Some things last


In the full blossom of your youth, at the height of all your frenetic energy, you spend your time doing things that, as you grow older, you may find yourself regretting. All that wasted time! But as you get older, wisdom sets in, you properly define yourself, and there are things you wish you could do, but you are now too old to do so.

An amazing line from the film: “Life can only be understood looking backward. It must be lived forward.”

It would be wonderful if life were made that way. But as the film illustrates, whether growing older or growing younger, it doesn’t matter if you end up not doing what you’ve wanted to do in life.

Everyone’s life is just a collection of moments and memories. People will go away, people will die, you will love and you will fall out of love.

At one point, Benjamin says, “Nothing lasts.” Blanchett’s Daisy replies, “Some things last.”

They would include memories—what we leave behind and who we leave behind. Knowing that, growing older doesn’t seem so scary anymore.

Sonnet LVVI by Pablo Neruda

[This is all for you. No matter what.]

I do not love you--except because I love you;
I go from loving to not loving you,
from waiting to not waiting for you
my heart moves from the cold into the fire.

I love you only because it's you I love;
I hate you no end, and hating you
bend to you, and the measure of my changing love for you
is that I do not see you but love you blindly.

Maybe the January light will consume
my heart with its cruel
ray, stealing my key to true calm.

In this part of the story I am the one who
dies, the only one, and I will die of love because I love you,
because I love you, Love, in fire and in blood.

22 January 2009

"Health is wealth"

[Goodbye Mariana Bridi da Costa!]

My mother would always remind me- Health is wealth. She would admonish us when we seemed to forget that our bodies were so fragile.

A healthy body is our only hope, she would tell us. For how can you earn money when you are always sick? Indeed she was right- once again.

When I read the news about a Brazilian model who got her arms and legs amputated because of severe infection, I was sad. I didn't know her of course. But earning money from a modelling job and suddenly your arms and feet are amputated doesn't make sense anymore. When can she recover from that? If she could.

Or I am just a pessimist!

Brazilian model’s hands, feet amputated 

Agence France-Presse
First Posted 09:39:00 01/22/2009

Filed Under: Health treatment, Diseases

SAO PAULO -- A 20-year-old model who was a finalist to represent Brazil in the Miss World contest has had her hands and feet amputated after contracting a severe urinary infection, media reported Wednesday.

Mariana Bridi da Costa was sedated in a hospital in Serra, in Brazil's state of Espirito Santo, and on artificial respiration following the procedures, according to several dailies.

Bridi was diagnosed with infection by the Pseudomonas aeroginosa bacterium, which can often prove fatal. Septicemia set in in her limbs, cutting off circulation and forcing doctors to amputate.

Her boyfriend, Thiago Simoes, told the G1 news website that Bridi fell ill on December 30, but was initially misdiagnosed with kidney stones.

The infection quickly spread, causing her to go back to hospital for tests that revealed her condition. Surgeons had to act to remove her damaged hands and feet.

Her father, Agnaldo da Costa, told the Folha de S. Paulo newspaper that "the concern is over her life."

Bridi twice made it into the national finals for the Miss World contest, and last year traveled to China to participate in the Miss Bikini International pageant, G1 said.

News from Photo from

21 January 2009

So very Filipino

We were craving for beer and wanting to check on the new tambayan here in Cebu called The Strip. The former Food Street now renovated and spanky clean has a 24-hour store and crowds of young professionals and students frequent the area. It used to be a smelly place near the Capitol building but we heard it was foreclosed and now the bank is managing the area. 

Well- when we arrived there, some moneyed patrons, judging from the cars that parked there, have already convereged on the area. We barely have a table and seats available.

We have consumed about ten bottles of the newly introduced San Miguel Premium All Malt beer when the sudden urge of the call of nature, also known as peeing, a result from the beers that bloated us, was inevitable. I asked the counter girl where can I go. She told me to ask the guard.

The guard was nowhere to be found so I sat still. When he appeared I was more than happy. Smiling, I asked him the directions to the comfort rooms. He told me plainly, Wala man mi CR diri sir [We have no CRs here sir]. Sa kilid-kild lang sir. [Just pee on the sides].


20 January 2009

The Roman Catholic Church Today

I was shocked when the parish priest of the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral announced during one of the masses that the parish has spent millions of pesos to renovate the parking space of the cathedral and would like to ask for more donations from benevolent parishioners. 

Meanwhile so many homeless people surround the premises of the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral. So many people in Cebu could not even eat a decent meal much more buy a kilo of rice. So many children in the streets begging for a few centavos.

Is this a sign that the Roman Catholic Church is really numb to what's happening to the real world? 

Let me know your comments.


HOST: When will your regional conference be held?
Guest: It will be on the second year of January.

Host: What will you be sharing with our viewers in this portion of our show?
Guest: For the store owners out there, we have tips on how to attack your customers.

Host: What do you like to do to relax?
Guest: I like to go to the beach, listening while relaxing to the wiping of the water.

Host: What is your order to your people during this military mission?
Guest: If they fire us, we will fire them!
(Fire away!)

Host: How was your last concert—was it successful?
Guest: More than! All the people watching, their faces were clapping!

Host: Why did you choose her for your model?
Guest: To showcase my hairstyle, she’s the best, because kanyang personality, napaka-humane and simplicity.

Compilation grabbed from

18 January 2009

Sincere Apologies to Everyone

from an email I received today

Over the past few months I have forwarded some inappropriate pictures and jokes to friends who I thought shared the same sense of humor.

Unfortunately this wasn't the case and I seem to have upset quite a few people who have accused me of being sexist and shallow. If you were one of these people, please accept my sincerest apologies.

From now on, I will only post or send e-mail with a cultural or educational content such as old monuments, nature and other interesting topics.

Below is a picture of the Pont Neuf Bridge in Paris. It is the oldest bridge in Paris and took 26 years to build. It was completed in 1604.

15 January 2009

My love affair with Sinulog

Most of you non-Cebuanos would excitedly flock to Cebu and see the Sinulog celebrations. Mine is a love-hate relationship with Sinulog. Here are the reasons why-

Why I hate Sinulog-
  • People everywhere would cause massive traffic jams.
  • The usual 15-minute ride would almost become an hour of intense struggle.
  • During the Sinulog parade, all you could do is walk. Jeepneys are re-routed. Taxis won't bring you to your destination no matter how near because of very slow traffic.
  • Noise pollution becomes intense! Beating of drums even in the evenings can be heard. Karaoke in the houses are on the rise.
  • Our favorite hangouts suddenly become full and nowhere can we sit in.
  • Bars, even those unknown, would cordone off their premises and impose an entrance fee even if they have nothing special going on. You pay the entrance fee and drink a beer. Shucks.
  • I have to search for hotels and pension houses so that friends could be accommodated. But at this time, even the dirtiest pension house are doing well. So I have to scout even outside city limits. Tiring!
  • Pickpockets, swindlers, snatchers would be in season.
  • Muggers and trippers also abound. Just be careful.
  • And I am quite sure only a few souls would go to the Basilica del Señor Santo Niño and at least light some candles there.

Why I love Sinulog-
  • Friends connect. Even long time friends suddenly remembers you. Especially if they need a place to stay.
  • Friends from abroad comes home. If you are good to them you can have a pasalubong.
  • So many freebies from companies offering new products and discounts!
  • Stores would offer sale and discounts.
  • Sinulog is eyecandy. Aside from the colorful costumes of dancers, so many yummy people can be seen around as if some magic spell comes to Cebu.
  • Some people come to Cebu to get laid. So be always ready, just in case. Remember to bring other safety gadgets.
  • The celebrations would bring in lots of food and drinks. Some friends would invite you to eat at their house.
  • Sinulog is a good reason to be drunk until the morning.
  • You can visit the whole province if you take time to see the big displays on the Sinulog routes.
  • Christmaasss is extended!

Picture grabbed from

13 January 2009

Idol season once again

American Idol is back and hopefully will bring in fresh talents from America. I wonder why the Philippine version is not that exciting to view. Don't tell me that colonial mentality crap because this is about talents.

Anyways- here are some memorable Idols as compiled by the staff of I wonder why they did not include Elliot Yamin here on the list.

Kelly Clarkson—Former cocktail waitress and first winner in 2002 who sold more than 20 million albums and had eight Top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot 100; double Grammy and four-time American Music Award winner; currently working on a fourth album due out in March.

Clay Aiken—2003 runner-up but one of most successful males in “Idol” history; recorded four studio albums and had a Broadway run in “Monty Python’s Spamalot”; admitted he’s gay in September, after the birth of his son with female friend and record producer Jaymes Foster.

Jennifer Hudson—Placed 7th in 2005, then won an Oscar, Golden Globe and SAG as Best Supporting Actor for her role as Effie White in “Dreamgirls” (2006); also appeared in “The Secret Life of Bees” and the movie version of “Sex and the City”; 2008 debut album earned four Grammy nominations. Her mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew were murdered in Chicago in October.

Taylor Hicks—2006 winner whose debut album went to No. 2 on the Billboard charts, but was described as “the lowest selling album by any Idol winner”; played role of Teen Angel in “Grease” on Broadway in 2008; currently on US national tour in that role; new album “The Distance” due out on his own label in March.

Sanjaya Malakar—17-year-old Top 12 finalist in 2007, best known for variety of hairstyles and pitchy singing; in 2008, mocked himself in an insurance commercial; released a memoir in January and a five-track EP called “Dancing to the Music in My Head.”

David Cook—2008 winner whose debut album in November 2008 entered at No. 3 on the Billboard charts and is currently in 10th spot; plans a US tour in 2009.

William Hung— [I really hate this guy!] Chinese-American civil engineering student who shot to fame in 2004 after toneless audition performance of “She Bangs”; released three albums, appeared in TV commercials, starred in 2005 movie “Where is Mama’s Boy” and makes occasional appearances in Hong Kong and the US.

Carrie Underwood—2005 winner and multiple Grammy and Country Music Association Award winner; has sold more than 11 million records worldwide; third album expected in late 2009.

Chris Daughtry—2006 4th placer made chart-topping debut album and won three American Music Awards in 2007.

Jordin Sparks—At 17 became the youngest winner in 2007; debut album spawned three hit singles including “No Air” with Chris Brown which is in the running for a 2008 Grammy.

Fantasia Barrino—2004 winner whose debut album was Grammy-nominated; starred in a TV biopic of her own life as a teen single mom and won rave reviews as star of “The Color Purple” on Broadway in 2007.

David Archuleta—2008 runner-up who released a best-selling single, “Crush,” in August 2008 and a debut album in November that peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard charts. Expected to appear in Nickelodeon’s “iCarly” show in early 2009. [Reuters]

For a complete list of Idol winners follow this link.

May tama ang nanay ko

My mom wasn't able to finish her elementary. Obviously, she has no doctorate, no knowledge of scientific data. She doesn't know how to use the technologies being introduced now.

And yet she has used practical things in life long before scientific studies came out.

Colds, for example.

We were always being nagged when we were late to bed. My mom would always tell us we would be prone to colds when we lacked sleep. I always laughed at her. Who told you? would be my usual answer. I just know, she would retort.

After 35 years, my mother finally has a scientific proof. May tama si Mama! Why do mothers are always in the know?

Agence France-Presse
First Posted 08:31:00 01/13/2009

WASHINGTON -- People who get less than seven hours of sleep at night have a three times higher risk of catching a cold than people who sleep eight hours or more, according to a study released Monday.

Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania studied 153 people by documenting their sleep habits for two weeks and then administered nasal drops that contained the cold-causing rhinovirus.

"Participants were interviewed daily over a two-week period, reporting how many hours they slept per night, what percentage of their time in bed was spent asleep (sleep efficiency) and whether they felt rested," said the study.

"The less an individual slept, the more likely he or she was to develop a cold," said the findings published in the Archives of Internal Medicine's January 12 issue.

People who reported poorer quality of sleep had an increased likelihood of catching a cold, it said.

"Lower sleep efficiency was also associated with developing a cold -- participants who spent less than 92 percent of their time in bed asleep were five and a half times more likely to become ill than those whose efficiency was 98 percent or more. Feeling rested was not associated with colds."

The subjects were all in good health and their average age was 37.

A possible explanation for the link between sleep and cold susceptibility was "that sleep disturbance influences the regulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines, histamines and other symptom mediators that are released in response to infection," the study authors wrote.

Previous research has linked sleep deprivation to reduced immune function, but there has been limited evidence that lack of sleep increased the risk of catching the common cold.

The study was led by Carnegie Mellon University's Sheldon Cohen between 2000 and 2004.

Cartoon from News from

12 January 2009

Hindi mo ba ako kilala?

Those words might be attributed to the Pangandamans as of this time. (What? You haven't heard? To start with, read this link.) But in reality, most politicians and the heirarchy who insisted that there are higher echelons in the society would repeatedly abuse those lines to remind us in the lower strata that they are the superpowers of this ailing nation that is called the Philippines. Those are the words of arrogance.

Hindi mo ba ako kilala?

That line was used by the undersecretary of tourism when they illegally park their vehicle and being asked by a hotel security to move because they were blocking the area.

Hindi mo ba ako kilala?

A mayor who was refused drinks because he had had enough of too much.

Hindi mo ba ako kilala?

A police brandishing his firearms to insist his power.

Hindi mo ba ako kilala?

Opo di kita kilala. Sino ka nga ba?

To know the other side of the story of how the Pangandamans show their power, follow this first hand experience by Bambee dela Paz. To know the Pangandamans' side, you have to go to them and ask their version. But before doing that be sure you are acknowledged by the Pangandamans or else.

Quotable Quote: 

"The offspring of riches: pride, vanity, ostentation, arrogance, tyranny." [Mark Twain]

The gay side of me

I received a text message from a girl-friend asking me where they could see nude men dancing. In short- a gay bar.

This reminds me of an incident way back years ago when a group of gay friends suddenly decided to bring me to a gay bar somewhere in Mandaue City. Why Mandaue City? That city is the only place in Cebu where girlie and gay bars are being tolerated.

I resisted at their invitation but later go with the crowd since the group started to harass me. If I am confident with my sexuality, why bother? 

We entered a dark place named La Marinero where a man danced to the tune of an old song. Nazareth's Always Somewhere? I could not remember though. I was thinking to myself that dancers should be muscled and young just like in the movies but the performer might have drunk so much beer he only had a one-pack abs and neither was he young.

I started to get dizzy. Maybe because of the lights or the lack of them. Or maybe because of the smoke. Whatever, but I felt light-headed. I told the group I need some fresh air so I be excused to go out. They would not let me.

The different dancers on the stage must have the same cheap choreographer because they always have the same type of music, the same type of dance steps, the same style. Even the lighting on the stage were the same all throughout. And they were not even sexy.

I excused myself to the toilet. There I thought I could get some room but the dancers where already busy snorting something inside. How cheap that place could be. Well- I could not compare though.

I went back to my group. But the dancers already started to swarm our table like they may have smelled something. I sat down and a young dancer showed his penis right near my shoulders. I was aghast!

I went out.

Honestly I puked right at their door. I just did. I didn't know why. I almost ran towards the small stalls right outside and ordered a bottle of Red Horse beer. Gulped it down.

When my gay friends went out an hour after, they castigated me with the you-are-some-hypocrite-friend sermon and you-are-a-gay-bashing-friend-who-would-not-consider-the-joy-other-gays-want theme. 

I was just shocked. I joined them for the heck of it and thought it was fun, but it was not! And being called hypocrite while I was only being true to myself was unacceptable! I hated those gyrating men! How hypocrite could that be?

But who could win with an argument with gays? 

From that time on, when gay friends suddenly decided to go to shows of that kind, I politely decline, avoiding another disaster.

So when my girl-friend asked me where they could see those kind of shows, I told her I do not know with an honest to goodness remark.

Picture from

All men are the same

A man was leaving a cafe with his morning coffee when he noticed a most unusual funeral procession. A funeral coffin was followed by a second one about 50 feet behind the first. Behind the second coffin was a solitary man walking with a black dog.

Behind him was a queue of 200 men walking in single line. The man couldn't stand his curiosity.

He approached the man walking with the dog, "I am so sorry for your loss, and I know now is a bad time to disturb you, but I've never seen a funeral like this with so many of you walking in single line. Whose funeral is it?"

The man replied, "Well, that first coffin is for my wife." 

"What happened to her? " 

The man replied, "My dog attacked and killed her." 

He inquired further, "Well, who is in the second coffin?" 

The man answered, "My mother-in-law. She was trying to help my wife when the dog attacked and killed her also. " 

A thoughtful moment of silence passes between the two men. Then the first one asks in excitement "Can I borrow the dog?" 
The man replied "Join the queue."

(from an email)

11 January 2009

Quote of the Weak (grabbed from The Professional Heckler)

“My son is a social user but not an addict. It’s no big deal.”
~ Radio announcer Johnny Joseph a.k.a. Johnny Midnight father of Jorge Joseph, one of the “Alabang Boys”

[This quote reminds me of a city mayor in Cebu who constantly defended his adopted son who is also constantly bringing wreck and havoc among their constituents' lives. The son is an epitome of fear amongst city-folks. The mayor-dad acted a defender living up to his previous job as a Catholic faith defender, only this time the Catholics wanted to help him. He is so desperate he showed proof that his son is God-fearing, a pathetic defense. I am so glad my father is not a public figure hahaha.]

Feeling Greek, eating Greek

We all watched Mamma Mia! and wondered how to go to Greece and enjoy everything Greek. But aside from Christine who works in some private yacht touring Europe, all of us could not even afford to seat in a plane to Greece.

So Christine pampered us to a Greek cuisine, my choice actually, and brought us to Cyma at The Terraces in Ayala Center Cebu.

Although they were on a limited menu, Ice, our waiter, recommended some of the available fares which all of us found mind-boggling even with their names. But our mission there was to explore. And taste Greece. 

We ordered the weirdest of names and later was amused with their taste. Mora man lang nig burito kung wa pa ning lime ug white cheese. (This is just burrito with lime and cheese.) Some of us later quipped. We ordered different food and later share them so as to maximize the experience.

I like the sweet melon and lamb salad best over a bottle of Hardy's white wine.

Now I am not the food critique type but I found the food served actually exciting and full of flavors. I wondered why our Filipino cuisine lacked the tang from the herbs Mediterraneans would put on their cuisine. But then again we all have different tastes and each region is distinct from the other. 

And so this experience.

And while there, be careful with anything that comes with fire- the staff at Cyma would usually shout OPA! upon serving. If it is your first time there, I am sure you would be shocked.

10 January 2009


Everytime I go to SM City Cebu, I could not help but go to Jonie's for their Pork Ribs Meal. I just don't know why. I'm not a big fan of pork but I just love their version.

I was eating one of those when the manager (so I thought) approached me with a big smile. She was giving me a free buko pandan because she always (her words) see me eating at their restaurant. You always ordered for the ribs, she told me. I was impressed. How many clients were there during the whole week and she remembered all the time that I love their pork ribs!

I asked her if there would be hitches aside from the free buko pandan. Well, there was actually. She asked me to purchase their Sizzling Card at the price of 50 pesos. It was like a privilege card. Free sizzling chicken steak or sizzling chicken barbecue for a minimum purchase of 150 pesos single receipt. Valid until December 2009.

I could have said NO. I hate those sizzlers because many times I've been asked if my perfume was sizzling sisig. But by the way she approached me I took my fifty without resistance.

I took the card, I devoured the buko pandan with gusto and plans to go back there soon.

The Sea Gypsies have become Sea Beggars

While inside Weesam Express I was startled by a knock on the windows. I looked through it. The Badjaos were all extending their hands as if I could open the windows of the fast-raft.

Camera: Sony Ericsson W810i, natural light
Location: Tagbilaran Pier in Bohol

09 January 2009

Sign of the Times

SEOUL (AFP) - - A jobless scientist with a doctorate in physics has applied for a street sweeper's job, reflecting the severe economic slump and rising unemployment, officials said here Friday.

The 36-year-old physicist was among 63 people who applied for five openings as sweepers, Seoul's Gangseo District Office said. Eleven of the applicants were university graduates, it said.

"I doubt whether any doctorate degree will be of any help to become a sweeper," Chung Young-Ik, an official in charge told AFP.

"He must have been in a very desperate situation to seek this job but we are selecting new sweepers, not scientists," he said.

07 January 2009

Texting etiquette: Some people just need this

I  received a text (SMS) message today from an unlisted number. All he/she/it (for purposes of brevity I will refer him/her/it as it) said was HAI. I don't know what it meant by that. I believe it was some hoax again. I did not reply. Yet it sent me the same message again. Irritated, I asked who it was. It texted back- Marken got ur numbr frm sumone.

Now this really blew me up and so these basic etiquette for those people who wanted to annoy other people.
  1. Never annoy other people just because you have nothing to do.
  2. If you don't know who you are texting and it is your first time to text him/her, please introduce yourself including your purpose of texting and where did you get the person's number. It has been proven that by doing so, you will get a reply.
  3. If someone asks you other people's number, please take extra effort to ask or tell the concerned person that someone is asking for his/her number. 
  4. Never ever give other people's numbers without their permission. It is very rude.
  5. And if by chance you are bored, horny or just wanting to make other people's lives miserably difficult, rule number 1 still is the most effective way.
Privacy still counts despite the encroachment of technology in our lives.

Photo grabbed from

06 January 2009

It's all about LOVE

We are rich

The holiday season brought us a very talkative 6-year old kid from Cavite. Innocence and amusement filled our household everyday during the holiday season.

One time she blurted out- Mayaman pala kayo Lolo, Lola! (You were rich Lolo, Lola!)

We laughed and we asked why.

Mayaman po kayo kasi may hagdan kayo. (You are rich because you have stairs.)

I never knew that a simple staircase could give meaning to a child. And she saw it as a status symbol. Now this staircase of ours is not the flamboyant type you can see in some rich man’s mansion. Our staircase is a compilation of wood slabs 6 inches wide and 24 inches long. I was suddenly conscious about it that I measured it up and counted them. They were the ugliest staircase I could find in the whole wide world.

I asked the child why the stairs made us rich. Her simple answer was- Wala po kaming ganyan. (We don’t have one at home.)

We were not rich just because we have a staircase. Yet those stairs were rich in memories of love and pain, of joy and sorrows. Looking at it, you could see it has survived time. Been polished many times to hide its deformities. Some parts have succumbed to termites and other calamities.

Many children loved playing on this staircase. Us. Our children. Our neighbors. Our nephews and nieces. Many a child got his foot sprained because of the undersized slabs. It was here that a loving and motherly love was shown to ease the sprained foot or a bruised head.

It was here when a sister sat and announced to the family that she was getting married. It was also here that she sat crying over her lost husband who died due to illness.

It was on the railings of the staircase that artworks were displayed by proud parents. It was also on those railings that a sister displayed her autographed picture of the first woman pilot of Cebu Pacific bearing a greeting for her because she worked at that same company. 

The alcoholic brother sat at those stairs not minding that the whole family was looking at him heaving a sigh full of pain and regret.

Yes, the child is right! We are rich!

05 January 2009

Unang araw ng pasukan at walang magawa sa buhay

1. Ang squidballs ba ay bayag ng pusit? Ang squidballs ay hindi bayag ng pusit ngunit bayag ni Tiya Pusit.

2. Pwede bang uminom ng softdrink kapag coffee break? Pwedeng uminom ng softdrink kung coffebreak ngunit kailangan itong lagyan ng asukal at kopimeyt. kopimeyt dapat at huwag gatas. (Milk in my cereal, kopimeyt in my Pepsi. Sounds good to me!)

3. Pwede bang gamitin ang AM radio pag gabi na? Maari lamang gamitin ang AM radio kapag gabi kung ang iyong pakikinggan ay FM.

4. Ang fire exit ba ay labasan ng apoy? Ang fire exit ay ginagamit lamang bilang labasan ng apoy kapag may sunog. Ito ang kanilang daan upang sila'y makatakas o ang tinatawag na "fire escape".

5. Ang uod ba pag namatay ay inuuod din? Ang tao kapag namatay ay hindi tinatao. Malamang ang uod ay hindi rin inuuod. Kung ang tao ay inuuod kapag nalaguatan ng hininga, siguro ang uod kapag namatay ay tinatao.

6. Totoo bang ang mga manok na pinatay sa Jollibee ay masasaya kaya sila tinawag na Chickenjoy? Ang mga manok na pinatay sa Jollibee ay masaya kung kaya't sila'y tinawag na Chickenjoy. Ngunit hindi inakailangang sa Jollibee patayin ang manok upang maging ito ay maging masaya... ang mga manok ay nagiging masaya kapag sila ay may kasama sa buhay. Kapag ito ay nag-iisa lamang, ito ay hindi chicken joy kundi... McChicken Singles.

7. Mayroon bang kahit isang langgam na mahilig sa maalat? Alam na ba ninyo iyong patawa na "itlog maalat"? Nakagat ako minsan ng langgam...

8. Kung ang 7-11 Store ay bukas 24 hrs a day , 7 days a week , at 365 days a year, bakit may lock pa ang pinto nila? Bakit? Dalawa ang dahilan: Una, may coffee break (tingnan ang katanungan bilang 2 hinggil sa maaaring inumin kapag coffe break) din naman ang mga nagtatrabaho sa 7-11. Pangalawa, mayroon tayong tinatawag na leap year.

9. Bakit di mataas ang highway? Dahil kung mataas ang highway, walang paglalagyan ang skyway.

10. Ba't alang lumilipad na sasakyan sa flyover? Hindi lang natin nakikita ang mga nagliliparang sasakyan sapagkat hindi tayo tumutingala kapag tayo ay nasa flyover. Ang pagsalin ng dayuhang salita na flyover sa katutubong wika ay "fly"-lipad, "over"-sa ibabaw. Ibig sabihin nito na ang mga kotse ay hindi lumilipad sa flyover ngunit sa ibabaw ng flyover. Ngayon kung titingala ka naman kapag ikaw ay nasa flyover ang tangi mong makikita ay ang kisame ng iyong sasakyan. Alam kong wala sa inyong mayroong sasakyan na Miata, Boxster, Kompressor, Z3, Z8 at kung ano-ano pang kotseng pangmayaman kaya't huwag na kayong magpumilit mamilosopo... ako lang ang may karapatan! Kung idadahilan niyo naman na mayroon kayong sunroof, hanapin ninyo ang inyong tinatawag na "sense of humor". Namamatay ng maaga ang palaging seryoso.

At lagi rin natin sana tandaan ang dayuhang salawikain na "ask a dumb question and you'll get a dumb answer."

Kinopya ng buo galing sa isang email na natanggap ko.

04 January 2009

Can't sleep. Could not sleep.

I slept earlier actually. 8 pm. Unusual.

But I felt cold the whole day. Very unusual again. Must be the weather. Must be the stress I encountered yesterday when my bag with checks and important documents and keys to the house was carried by an unknown passenger leaving me with her bag of unwashed undies. Or just because I sent off a very close relative and her family to the airport today because they are leaving for US. Whatever.

But today was unusually cold.

Maybe because I still have the rashes from my til-as (tell me the English term please) encounter in Batuan. Didn't knew why those greeny oval-shaped things with lots of toxic pricks in their bodies and found in plant leaves suddenly was in my right arm and it hurts like hell. Til-as. Why not tell me. Or you. Why tell us? I'm babbling.

I felt cold. In fact I am shivering to the bones. My body is not even hot. No cough. No colds. I think I have no fever. But I'm cold.

I woke up at 12.30 this morning because somebody miscalled me. Damn! I ignored it. Went to the john only to find a cockroach waiting for me. FYI roaches can kill me, I believe. I abhor them. Those creepy dirty whiskery flying idiots who could survive a nuclear holocaust. Am I just envious? Once I have a bug spray in my bag and friends made fun of me because of it. Roaches tensed me to the maximum level. I sprayed him ( hope he is a he because he would be dead) and it was a bad decision. He/It flew and ran all over my place. 

The more I'm stressed out!

Glad he was dead later. But still I could not sleep. And I am cold! Brrrrrr.

I covered my body with my good old habol (blankets).

The sound of termites eating my door reverberated my room. The clock's ticking joined in like there is a countdown ongoing.

I could not sleep.

I'm cold.

And so this blog.

Portrait of a prodigal father and son

My brother. An alcoholic. A father. A prodigal son. Irresponsible. Doesn't care if the world ends now or never. This portrait was taken by his son during the New Year 2009 using my Sony Ericsson W810i.

Happy New Year Everyone!

Despite the threats, the political issues, the crisis all over the world, we have survived 2008. May we have the eagerness to start anew and make this year and the years to come more peaceful, more bountiful, more generous and more meaningful.

Let's sing our blues away. Happy New Year!

Guys you see on the pics are the happy traditional carolers of Batuan, Bohol.

Goodbye Lola Idad

Born November 23, 1905
Died December 23, 2008

Our lola passed away at the age of 103 last December 23. She died peacefully after requesting one of her daughters to hug and kiss her. Just like that.

I have fond memories of her during my younger days. She was the only lola (she was the sister of our original lolo from my father's side) that would kiss and hug us when we were young. Sarap ng feeling.

Rest in peace lola.