Month: December 2008

Strange Christmas Wish

Every year at least 2 weeks before Christmas day, I would ‘text’ my younger sister (Jocel) to send me a list of names of all my nephews and nieces. I would usually ask her for the list for me to have a reference when I go shopping for presents that they would open during the Christmas Eve. Every year, I am blown away with the long list of names that my sister would send me!

Never did a Christmas season pass that I fail to give a Christmas present to all these monster pamangkins. This year, apart from my usual wish for peace of mind and healthy being, my other Christmas wish is for these monsters to visit me at “Golden Acres” or “Home for the Aged” when I grow old and turn grey.

Hoy! Bisitahin nyo ko dun. Kung hinde, pandidilatan ko kayo!



Kuya Wreigh was the one responsible how I first learned about the Eraserheads.  I remember him bringing the band’s first album ultraelectromagneticpop in cassette format borrowed from his college classmate.  These were the days when CD was not yet invented or still considered rare and high-tech.

When Kuya played it in our massive cassette player (with built-in 3-inch tv) I initially didn’t liked it.  It was like noisy dudes playing their hearts out in a recording studio.  However, after a couple of times listening to it, the songs in the album was like enchanting chameleon in which the beat naturally grew in me.  Their lyrics were very contemporary which a typical youth like me uses during those times.  Also, the message they convey smacks right into my generation’s psyche.

I was unaware that I so loved the Eraserheads that I was able to buy each of the cassette they released in the market.  More than 10 years later, here comes Kuki and Matet giving me (as a birthday present) a CD audio copy of Eraserhead’s reunion concert held a couple of months ago.  By the way, the eventful concert was cut short hen the lead singer Ely Buendia suffered from a mild heart ailment/condition due to fatigue.

When I played and listened to the reunion concert, I unexpectedly realized that I missed a very big event, an affair that signified my being youth.  I knew I let pass a momentous event when I heard people in the audience stridently singing along while the bands were playing.  It made me envy.

I was literally teary eyed when the song “With A Smile” was played.  This song was revived by a lot of singers but the band’s  original version was very special.  Hook line and sinker Ely’s timbre and tone truly fits the genuine sentiment of the song.  The emotion for each of the line he utters and every tremble in his throat indisputably exhibits what the song conveys.  What added to the lump in my throat was hearing the audience emotionally singing along.  It was such a goose bumper!

Eraserheads definitely added some spice in my youth.  Now, I promised myself that in the event they will redo their cut-short concert I will make myself present in the affair.  No matter what it takes!

Salamat sa mga Pamburang Ulo! Yu rak!

Macau Adventure

It was an amazing weekend! I never thought that my trip and weekend vacation to Macau would be very enjoyable. Macau is a place that a lot of people have yet to discover. The air was surprisingly clean, there was literally no traffic, the people are okay and the infrastructures were great.

Prior to leaving for Macau a lot of people relayed that why should I and my usual tour-mates (Karen & Denton) go there when there are only few places to go to. Well, our Macau adventure proved them wrong.

First hour was already an adventure by trying to look for a restaurant that would fill our empty stomachs. Not all restos in Macau have English-translated menu. Nevertheless, we ended up in a rickety restaurant with somewhat cleanliness problem and non-English speaking servers yet the food they served were superb. We enjoyed it so much we decided to dine back after 2 days of touring around the metro, 2 nights of casino playing and before retreating back to our hotel. Too bad I don’t know the name of the restaurant. It’s written in Chinese characters!

It was in Macau that I ate a fried pigeon for the first time – authentic bird-flu-free kalapating mababa ang lipad. Poor pigeon, even the head with its beak was served munched to the delight by Denton. A true Lutong Macau experience!

All nighs we spent in Macau were in various casino-hotels trying to compare one from the other. Macau adventure would not be complete without playing the casinos. We played every single night that we were there – Ponte 16, Hotel Lisboa, The Sands, The Venetian casinos. We also entered Wynn Hotel & Casino and Casino Jai-Alai but did not played there. The most majestic from my own point of view was the Venetian followed closely by Wynn. The place truly lived up to its name being the Las Vegas of Asia.

I personally loved the Macau Wine and Grand Prix Museums. These tourist spots we learned were being manned by Filipinos. A close second was the Senado Square with lots of shops and tourists trying to find the best bargain. I also enjoyed the fabulous St. Paul Ruins and the amazing Mount Fortress.

One let down though. Chinese people have not over come the habit of “dahak” and yucky spitting. Never did the day passed that we did not hear the local men – with all their might – trying to disgorge their sticky phlegm out from the deepest pit of their nasal cavity so as to spew it out even in the public.

Pinoys will never get lost in Macau. There is always a Pinoy somewhere – inside the resto, the boutique, the plaza, the bus, the hotel, the street, the casino, the restroom. We’re everywhere!

O basta! Hindi lutong makaw sa Macau…

Pinoy Nickelodeon 2008

It is not Famas, Urian, MTV Awards nor the Oscars that I have watched an awards night live for the first time. Ironically at my age, it is the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards Philippines held last November 29 at Aliw Theater.

Surprisingly, I enjoyed the show. But shame to those who won but did not showed up to receive their award, it’s the kids who voted for you for crying out loud! I believe this award is such a big deal considering that it’s the people of the world’s future who has selected the winner. Thus, those who have been nominated should take the effort to be present during the awarding ceremony even if he or she is in the deepest pit of hell.

However, there seem to be some awards which were obviously rigged like the Favorite TV Show won by Marimar beating the more kid-popular Going Bulilit. It will not be a Filipino awards night anyway without this controversy. Evidently, Going Bulilit when announced as a nominee the kids went crazy with ear-splitting screams but when Marimar was announced as the winner the kids went pretentiously hysterical and hysterically pretentious.

I was happy that Chris Tiu won Favorite Athlete beating Manny Pacquiao and Efren “Bata” Reyes. When Chris appeared on the stage to receive his orange blimp award in front of the screaming-gone-crazy kids, it dawned in me that this may signify the creation of a new and/or future religion called “Iglesia ni Chris Tiu”.

By the way, I was with Nengkoy, my sisters and a couple of pamangkins. Let me bet my skinny pwet (butt), Nengkoy at 71 years, 8 months and 26 days old is the oldest person ever to have watched a Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards live!

Ang sarap maging bata. Yahuuu!

Pedro Zamora, PWA (A World AIDS Day Special)

pedro zamora
pedro zamora

December 1 is World AIDS Day.  One person with AIDS that made a tremendous mark on me was Pedro Zamora.  He is one of the casts of MTV’s The Real World San Francisco shown in 1994.  This was before all more popular reality shows were created like Big Brother, Survivor, Fear Factor, America’s Next Top Model, Biggest Looser, etc.  The movie Reality Bites which starred Winona Ryder was actually based on this ’90s TV show.

I remember one weekend in 1994 when MTV cable channel made a marathon feature of the said show.  All episodes were shown without commercial.  It took me at least 6 hours to be glued in front of the television to watch the interesting blow by blow events that happened.

One interesting character was Pedro Zamora, a PWA (person with AIDS) who lived with 6 other strangers in one house in San Francisco to try to develop an interesting housemate relationship in front of the camera – a breakthrough social experiment and controversial TV show without-script-concept back then.  Being a PWA, Pedro was able to reach more people with his message and touched more people with his life than anyone could have imagined.

I’d never personally seen the face of AIDS and hopefully never will.  I’d never known it in such a personal way until I watched Pedro.  I felt like he was walking me through the disease, the way a close friend might take your hand for a stroll.  It gave me a totally different level of awareness than anything I might have ever experience as a person regarding the disease.

Pedro being a typical youth in the ’90s taught so much about what it’s like to live with the disease.  He taught how to stand up for what he believed and was not afraid of what others might think.

He did not die in the show but according to news, he passed away in November 11, 1994 hours after the last episode was aired.  He did a great job about HIV/AIDS awareness and was so inpiring among the youth that even former US President Bill Clinton named a street after him in Miami Florida called “Pedro Zamora Way”.

Ako kaya? May mag pangalan kaya ng eskinita sa ngalan ko? Why not? Peklat.