Month: November 2008

Thanks!

gift from kuki and matet
gift from kuki and matet

It’s official! I am now 38 years old.  I know that the secret on being 38 is to reach 37.

 
As early as 2 weeks before my birthday I have been receiving text messages, simple notes and e-mail message greetings from lovely people.  If you sent me a message, feel free to find your name below…
 
 
  1. Dr. Jing Perez and Muy Muy (ang doktorang cool at ang taba-ching-ching)
  2. Berna Asunto (ang kulot kong casino-mate)
  3. Matet Arranguez (ang sosyal ng Marketing)
  4. Kuki Catindig (ang Reina Delas Flores)
  5. Erwin Miranda (ang pare, bro at dude)
  6. Betchay Teodoro and AR (ang mag-syotang seldom magkita)
  7. Mimi Quibedo (ang maingay na reyna ng text-load)
  8. Chef Onille Caballero (ang mommy ng bayan)
  9. Karla Ann Sulit (ang hopeless romantic)
  10. Chef Diony Oguing (ang maton ng Trinoma)
  11. Frankie De Vera (ang piratang hearth-throb)
  12. Gie Abainza (ang sexing matanda)
  13. EBB (ang sexing mas matanda)
  14. LCA (ang boss)
  15. NMH (ang maingay)
  16. Grasya Villadolid (ang totoong Survivor)
  17. Eds Tenioso (ang gentle giant ng resto)
  18. Tito Galvez (ang gentle giant ng hotel)
  19. Baby Angeles (ang byahera sa madaling araw)
  20. Karengkeng Teotico (ang wacky usual tourmate)
  21. Joeselia Javier (ang diwata ng Qantas)
  22. Ariel Ycong (ang hari ng kalsada)
  23. Willie, Ate Gaying and Louie Clamor (ang pamilyang mayaman)
  24. Vice Mayor Emie Calixto (ang susunod na mayor ng Pasay)
  25. Jhun, Jojo amd Angel Abubo (ang simple pero rock na pamilya)
  26. Ikang Langit (ang gimikerang pamangkin)
  27. Lito Salamanca (ang yosi king)
  28. Avi (ang Italyanang negra)
  29. +63919***7102 (kung sino ka man, salamat)
  30. +63915***8339 (kung sino ka din, salamat)
  31. Edgar Ong (ang singkit na classmate)
  32. Vlad (ang bata sa katawan ng hunk)
  33. Benedict Casimiro (ang best apprentice ever)
  34. Ayee Montano (ang kolokoy)
  35. Suzette Cuerpo (ang empress under-the-sea)
  36. Erick Angeles (ang reyna ng disyeto)
  37. Chanky Tiangco (ang sweet devilish)
  38. Rico Panghulan (ang kusinerong cool)
  39. Jo Cerrera (ang prinsesa ng Graphics)
  40. Honey Ballesil (ang madre sa hotel)
  41. Dr. Beth Alo (ang full-time world traveler & part-time doctor)
  42. Avic & Bokyo’s Angels (ang mga babae at kambal ni Kuya Bogis)

I would also like to thank all those who greeted me personally.  You know who you are…  You just don’t know how much it meant to me.

Salamat Lord! 

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A Morning View

a view from my window
a view from my window

I never knew that rainbow still appear in polluted Metro Manila.  Early morning today after a short rainfall, I looked out my window and saw a fast fading rainbow.

It put a smile on my face and made me hum to the tune of Kermit The Frog’s song “The Rainbow Connection” while having my shower.  I presumed that this is a lovely sign from heaven for a beautiful day ahead.

While preparing my breakfast I wondered how come the Tagalog word for rainbow is “bahaghari”?  Bahaghari when translated in English means king’s g-string.  Imagine?  That would be a very colorful yet sexy undies for a king.

Also, according to western belief there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  Therefore in Tagalog if the king wears a colorful g-string, what then is at the end of it?  It’s not a pot of gold definitely but two hanging balls! Hahaha!

O sha! O sha! Ang aga aga.  Itlog at hotdog pa naman ang breakfast ko.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower – NOT!

I was intrigued by the title that lured me to seek for it.

Every time I would have the chance to go to a mall, I would always drop by a bookstore to find “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky.  I also entered numerous book-sale shops to ask about the existence of this book.  I even took the effort of calling all bookstores listed on the yellow pages to inquire its availability.  When all attempts were made, I had no choice but to order for the shipment of a copy from USA via Powerbooks – pay a considerable amount (reservation fee included) and waited patiently for the notification that it was already available for pickup.

It took me months to finally got hold of this elusive book.  Upon opening the package I was surprised that it was such a small thin paperback.  It only took me two short nights to finish reading it.

I hate to say it but the story was a big disappointment.  Though I do not consider myself to be one wallflower, I was not able to relate to the main character, Charlie.  Or, I was too much of a wallflower during my adolescent days (like the age of Charlie in the story) that I know what it was to be one and I wonder why he was like what he was in the story.  I believe everyone got at least a single gene of being a wallflower that would enable to correlate with the main character.  Unfortunately, I did not!

It was not worth all the sweat, blood and spit of searching for it.  I personally do not believe that the main character was a wallflower.  A wallflower is somebody boring, unadventurous, geeky, introverted and with uptight moral fiber due to being shy and meek.  However, Charlie an adolescent in his freshman year is somebody who is weird but not a wallflower.  Charlie in the story had sexual experience, attended parties (and was even an exciting wild figure in one), did drugs and had cool Senior high school students as close friends – an unlikely characteristics of a wallflower.  It is rare for a freshman – a wallflower at that – to have friends already in their senior year in high school.

The only good thing about the book was the title.  Now I know why this book is no longer available in the market.

Parang gusto ko batukan yung sumulat.

Nengkoy and the Provincial Wet Markets

Every time the family would go out of town, Nengkoy never fail to drop by at a town’s wet market to purchase the local produce of the province.  She would buy vegetables from kalabasa to ampalaya.  She would buy herbs and spices from bawang to sili.  She would buy fish from bangus to tuna.  She would buy meat from longganisa to bulalo.

This practice of Nengkoy always makes me fumingly irritated.  I always thought that this is such a waste of time since all the things that Nengkoy buys are actually available in Manila supermarkets.  This makes the journey back to Manila a very long and tiring process.  Nengkoy’s inevitable practice would eventually physically drain and wear out everyone not only because of the long ride home but also of the corporeal necessity of either waiting furiously or going around the busy wet market, carrying all the purchased stuff and fixing everything inside the car.

One classic example was our ride home from Manaoag, Pangasinan.  Before leaving Manaoag, me and Nengkoy went out of the church yard to buy bags of Calasiao rice cakes and the native “tupig”.  When we reached Villasis, Pangasinan, she instructed Kuya Willie to make sure to park the car at Villasis public market for she wants to buy stuffs for her kitchen stocks.  At this point, I tried to compose myself, control my tantrum and eventually agreed on stopping for I wanted to light a cigarette.  in due course, she bought kilos of the following produce: onions, garlic, squash, bitter gourds, Dagupan milk fish, cucumbers, broccolis and leeks – as if these perishables are either extinct or are hard to find in Manila.

After the tedious haggling for a cheaper price (which by the way Nengkoy is an expert of), carrying the heavy loads and fixing everything inside the van, the whole family continued its journey back home to Manila.  During the course of the journey, only then that I realized that Nengkoy’s habit is actually a good thing.

It is a good thing for it provides opportunity for folks in the provinces to earn and be able to sell their products even though they are miles away from the busy metropolis.  It is a good thing for it provides them income that would pay for their everyday needs.  It is a good thing because it enables provinces to receive a portion of the economy’s pie.  Nengkoy’s practice help disperse wealth and money to the outskirts of Metro Manila and not just to the bank account of either Gokongwei’s supermarkets or Henry Sy’s super malls.

This is such an enriching realization.  Thus, next time Nengkoy would go out of town and would like to stopover and buy some stuff, I would just shut my big mouth and try to enjoy the experience.

Sige palengke kung palengke! Go!

The Lady of Manaoag

It was my first time to step in the majestic church of our Lady of Manaoag.  The first thing I felt was tranquility even if there was presence of a lot of pilgrims.  The Lady standing at the altar was very peaceful and serene.  It gave me a warm feeling.

Being in the church premise gave me the feeling of old Pinas where mendicants are present just right outside of the church yard.  Unlike here in Manila mendicants are everywhere out to harass everyone.

What did I prayed for?  Certainly, I prayed for peace and simplicity on the complexities of life ahead.  I prayed for all my relatives, friends, co-workers and myself.  I also prayed for all the requests and desires of all people inside the church.  Of course, I thanked God for all the blessings that came and will come my way.

There is a belief that a person should wish for something when entering a church for the first time.  Without doubt, I did wish for something which I would not want to reveal.  Only God knows.  It’s one thing that I would like to keep as a secret between me and Him.  I know that through the intercession of our Lady of Manaoag this wish will eventually come true.

Actually, spending the whole day with Nengkoy and the whole family going to and from Manaoag talking about life experiences is already one great wish that already came true.  I’m looking forward to returning and visiting the Lady.

Simpleng saya, simpleng ligaya. ‘Yan ang gusto ko!

Aunt Lidya

It was a long ride going to Manaoag, Pangasinan.  It is inevitable that the whole family would talk anything and everything under the sun.  Call it – quality bonding.  Anyway, since Pangasinan is the home province of my father, it is impossible not to talk about family.  One topic that truly amazed me was how my Aunt Lidya (eldest sister of Nengkoy) got married to Uncle Manong.  It was all because of a bisikleta (bicycle)!

Pretty Lidya who had a boyfriend then was abducted by Manong, one of the manliligaw (suitor), using a bisikleta.  Call it tradition, custom or idiocy but during the old days, when a lady will be tanan (abducted) by a manliligaw the lady would have no choice but to marry the guy – may the lady like him or not.  This is to save the face, decency and reputation of the woman who already spent some time alone with a man.

Lidya was abducted by Manong using a bisikleta.  He pedaled their way from Pasay to Luneta (now Rizal Park), which is only approximately 5 kilometers apart.  The two spent the late evening in the park.  The following morning, my grandparents had no choice but to arrange an immediate marriage between the two.

This episode would be hilarious and outrageous if it would happen nowadays.  But talk about love and destiny, Lidya and Manong never got separated as a couple.  True love eventually bloomed between the two.  During the last breath of Manong, who spent his last years in Canada due to old age, Lidya was by his bedside.

Grabe! Ang haba ng hair ni Auntie! Pang-tanan material ang ganda!