Month: January 2014

Best Classic Burger

imagine? this beauty is not even the plated version.  this is a "take-out" which i enjoyed inside my office.
imagine? this beauty is not even the plated version. this is a “take-out” which i enjoyed inside my office.

Some would put truffled wild mushrooms, others would add blue cheese or cream cheese.  Some would enhance it with expensive foie gras while others would swell it up with smoked bacon.  Some would insert it with organic sunny side-up egg while others would intensify it with thick slices of chorizo.

Everyone should agree with me when I say that choosing the best burger in the universe is a personal choice.  Therefore, it is but an opinion based on the chooser’s sense of smell, sight and taste.

For me, I want my burger simple.    No intricate, diverse or complex byzantine flavours are needed to be added for me to enjoy it.  My burger must stick to the classic.

Thus, my favourite burger in the universe is the Classic Burger served and found in Café Adriatico. It’s unpretentiously thick, mouth-wateringly juicy and uncomplicatedly tasty.  The look, the texture and of course the taste can simply be described as a magical harmony for the senses.

Iikot ang pwet mo sa sarap…


Winter in Manila

match this with a stylish scarf and chic knitted winter hat, this fashion ensemble would be very appropriate for the would-be mild manila winter...
match this with a stylish scarf and chic knitted winter hat, this fashion ensemble would be very appropriate for the would-be mild manila winter…

The Manila weather in the past two weeks has been unusually chilly.  This is especially true from late afternoons until the late mornings.  Between these time periods, considerable number of people in the metro as I observed are surprisingly sporting jackets and sweaters.

Temperature in Manila has always been hot and scorching all year round.  Very cold countries would actually announce a heat wave in case they would experience the regular and prevalent Manila temperature.  That is why, temperature has never been a topic for a Manila-based conventional conversations.  But for the past two weeks, people are now talking about how chilly it has been.  Also, there has been a slow down on the sales of halo-halo while sales of hot lugaw (congee) has gone hotter!

With this surprising weather changes by freaky and fickle mother Earth, I will not be surprised that in a couple of years, international weather bureaus will announce that hot tropical Philippines will already experience winter.  I guess this is not farfetched because just last month snow actually fell in hot and sticky Vietnam.

What will be good in case scorching Manila will experience winter is that it is not the bitingly cold and bone-penetrating type of a winter similar to those countries away from the equator.  It would be tempered type where people can simply put on a piece of scarf around the neck and will no longer look silly in case they would sport layered outfits out on the street.

Though it is a bit worrying (of course, because of treacherously distorted climate changes), for me, winter in Manila would be a welcome change.  Why? Here are six advantages of having a mild chilly winter in Manila:

  • There would be downright decrease in electric bill since there will be lesser usage of airconditioning units;
  • There would be a decrease in the stench of body odors in public places – inside trains, malls, buses and jeepneys – because people will sweat less;
  • Fashion industry in Manila would finally take some transition.  There would already be a winter collection for local fashion designers.  Fashion Weeks held here in Manila are inappropriately pegged as summer and spring collections when in fact it should be labelled wet and dry season collections since these are the only seasons of equatorial Philippines.
  • There would be no atrocious diaphoretic beer-bellied shirtless people on the street (in Tagalog: wala ng nakahubad na malalaki ang tyan sa kalye);
  • Celebrities wearing jackets and layered garments who performs on TV during their Sunday weekly variety shows will no longer look stupid; and finally,
  • I can wear my Bershka leather jacket and Doc Martens leather boots!

Brrr… gininaw lang, kung ano ano na naisip!

Nengkoy and the Shoe World

nengkoy's super comfy nike
nengkoy’s super comfy nike

It’s been more than a year that I have been searching and researching for an appropriate geriatric shoes that would be most appropriate for Nengkoy, comfort wise and fashion wise.  But the search has been very unsuccessful.  It is because there are very limited sources and style that the senior populace can choose from.

But last week, this intention has finally been concluded.  Not because I found the right geriatric shoes for Nengkoy but because I purchased her the trendiest, most expensive and most comfortable shoes Nengkoy has ever had.

To test its ease, comfort and snugness we let Nengkoy wore the shoes right away upon purchase.  The result? It was indeed comfortable since she never complained and was able to tour by walking the whole SM Mall of Asia (one of the biggest malls in Asia).

Talking about SM Mall of Asia, while I was paying for the shoes, it dawned in me that Nengkoy can actually be considered one of the key elements and components in the initial success of taipan Henry Sy, the owner of the SM malls.

sm logo (has the same font of shoeworld)
sm logo (has the same font of shoeworld)

This is through the initial store of Mr. Sy located along Carriedo and Rizal Avenue called ShoeWorld.  Wikipedia does not acknowledge nor name the first shoe store of Sy in Carriedo/Rizal Avenue.  I suppose ShoeWorld was the store.  The only basis I know and clearly remember is that it’s located in Carriedo and the ShoeWorld’s logo font or lettering is the same as that of the present SM formerly known as ShoeMart. Imagine ShoeMart logo in which the M in inverted as W and the letterings are in the same navy blue shade with white strip in the middle.

I can still clearly remember the classy shoe store especially the red carpet of the stairs that leads the customers to its second and third floor. I can also still remember the hole on the ceiling in which ordered shoes based on size, model and colour as desired by prospective buyers would plunge down as dropped by people mysteriously inside the ceiling.

shoeworld circa late 70's (left building). the only photo of shoeworld available on the net
shoeworld circa early 80’s (left building) before the advent of lrt trains. the only photo of shoeworld available on the net

As I recall, Nengkoy was some sort of like an accredited sales agent for ShoeWorld.  Before the advent of gift certificates, credit cards and even the now popular Sodexho certificates, Nengkoy in the early 70’s here in the Philippines was already into this type of system.

She would be issued by the store manager with bundles of ShoeWorld business cards.  These are the same cards that Nengkoy would sign at the back and issues to her client.  The business card would serve as a voucher that buyers (sent by Nengkoy) can present in the store to purchase their desired shoes.  Buyers with the business cards with my mother’s signature at the back need not pay anything when they get to ShoeWorld.  Instead, would have to surrender the card to the cashier as their initial form of payment.  These clients would then pay Nengkoy the corresponding amount in trickles or instalment basis.  Nengkoy in return will have to remit her collections and would in turn get some sales commission.

This simple yet ingenious system, I believe, in some way led to the success of Mr. Sy’s business.  Thus, if indeed ShoeWorld was the first SM store, therefore, if I were Henry Sy I would definitely buy Nengkoy the most comfortable shoes ever created!

Though I am no taipan like Henry Sy, I would of course not settle for my mother to feel those foot aches and leg twinges.  Thus, I bought her the most comfortable shoes I could find.

Bongga di ba?

Change For The Better

It’s January 1, the day considered to be the first page of this year’s first chapter.  A fresh new year could mean a fresh new start to a lot of us.  May it be a healthier new you, a more mature disposition, saving lots of money or a total make over for an amiable personality, changing for the better has always been a good preliminary and starting point for a day like this.

Change for the BetterAn effective change for the better will not take just a day, it would I guess be more effective if it be done one day at a time.  Little by little.  Can you just imagine what we would be at the end of the year if in each day of it there are some positive changes in us?  That would be 365 little changes and improvements that we could have.

I have to have these changes because I feel that I owe my own life the very best that I could personally offer.  Also, I believe that these changes can eventually lead to positive prospects and possibilities.  I don’t intend to be a perfect person since that would literally be impossible.  But looking at each day as a new chance at being the best that I could possibly can would be my ultimate agenda.

May it be about the changes in my body, improvements in my pocket, enhancement in my personality, progress of my brain or the upgrading and rebooting of my soul, “Change for the Better” would be my 2014 aspiration, target and intention.

Magbago ka na uy!