Tuesday, April 29, 2008


Yes, I have a daughter. In my fantaserye days. Heh. Kidding aside (not to be mistaken as serious talk), the Sims2 loving, persona in me has ‘this child’ by the name of Stella. Not her complete name, of course. She’s close to turning four, hates the idea of going to school, and likes to tag along whenever I travel for my field research. I don’t think it’s because she’ll miss me or anything, it’s just that she takes after her mom—she loves to go places, and explore. I tried leaving her with the Mangyans before, but these friends of mine had to run after me when they found out that she’s got an appetite enough to feed the village. Stella is the quiet type (like her father)--your typical kid who like toys and running around, but smart enough to give you 101 reasons why she can play instead of take her naps in the afternoon. She invents words, and has a sketch book full of ‘invented words with pictures’. She said she’s bored ‘to (the) d-word’(yes, the d word is banned), and has been too comfortable to sit around in my office she felt like it’s her second home. Im beginning to wonder how, on earth should I explain them creatively: milo stains on some of the department's maps, mini, plastic cooking pans inserted in expensive books, butterfly drawings on my claim form.

Anyway, our department held a family outing at the zoo last weekend, so you can imagine how excited she was, and well, how things turned out.

While at the 'Animal kingdom' show...

Host: whats your name?
S: Stella
Host: okay, stella—can you give me one of the ‘r’s to help save the environment?
S: Oh. Okay—reduce--
Host: Very goo—
S: Reduce carbon monoxide and other gas emissions
Host: oh...okay... thank you, here’s a fridge magnet..

Now, all she wanted was to get a particular animal, so I can sense her disappointment when I she went back to her seat, in front of us. We congratulated her, and her father had to explain the morals of being contented with what one has been given. She was silent for a while, then decided to just raise her hands again for the Q&A on stage. We thought she wanted to try her luck on the fridge magnet again, but after all three ‘R’s were given, she was still raising her hand eagerly. ‘Tapos na anak’, I told her. ‘No, not yet, there are two more’. My husband and I exchanged looks—bordering contempt and ‘yang anak mo ha’. ‘Anu pa ba, ha?’ her father jokingly inquired. She looked at him with surprise and muttered ‘Restoration. Tsaka po ‘Reclamation’, diba po?’ she looked him straight in the eye, waiting for him to say ‘Why, yes.’ Instead, he looked striken. Hehe.

Oo nga naman.

Friday, April 25, 2008

makeup-less, mother ship, etc

DATED: 8 April 2008

Uminom para kay Brenda*
Shamelessly. Hah. I hate to admit it, but count me in as one of those Pinoys who have nothing but raves about the Southeast Asian Studies Head –slash- Asian Diaspora and Migration Research Leader- Prof Brenda Yeoh, and have lived to blog about it. Oh, for chrissake, she’s my boss. There you go. And no, I wont be posting this entry until I get everything official (I get my staff ID. hihi). Gee, why do I sound funny? Im just soo happy and thankful. My former colleagues think its my new job description, but really—I call it ‘BY’. With sommersualts and backflips. I hope I dont sound like a gloating jerk. Hay... when was the last time I felt so thankful, and just happy? I can even write a poem about it, for crying out loud. Hay! Dyos ko po...Salamat. Sometimes you really have to be utterly hopeless first, before the heavens give you what you badly want (and need). Im just grateful. And for all I care, my boss might come across this post at some point of her life. All I wanted to say, as cliche as this may sound: 'while everything happens for a reason, good things come--to those who wait. And hell, it was worth the wait. Too early to say, I know. But I like what Im doing right now. Who gets to say such things at certain points of her life, if not at all?

How about a PhD in Geography? :)

*a colloquial term which means 'lets drink to Brenda', pretty much similar to 'hats off' or 'cheers'.

p.s. ay, oo nga pala. may bago akong kasama sa bahay. Hindi ko nga kinakausap, at naiilang ako. Anu kasi eh--anu kase....medyo weird sya. Parang alien ba. eep!!
Abduction na itoh!!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


whereabouts galore. will post more pictures soon.
(top) me, with the 'disloyal' mug, very yellow file folders on the background, and that blue chair I wish to throw away, if no one takes it out by next month. this concludes my office. heh. (bought this nice 'half' of a jacket at Zara (on sale, of course!) last year. I think it looks good on me, although sometimes I think Im getting 'Ate Guy' vibes somewhere. Ugh.)
libreng mangarap, hija!


Ah, the economic recession. In this time of times, when everyone is in dire need for that ‘extra’ cash, one just cant help but wonder how, in his lowly ‘office worker’ life is he gonna get some. His time is tied on the bundy clock, by the time he’s done for the day he’s just so tired a ‘night shift’ part time job is not that promising (unless all he has to do is test matresses). This leads him to work on something: a) natural for him to do (so he dont sweat it out) and is b) very flexible.
Someone I know just cashed in on his ‘investment’ hobby to the tune of a hundred grand. And thats just the beginning. Having seen it myself (the moolah and the goods), I was all of a sudden inspired (well, its more of a realisation that Im in dire need as well, and I have to do something). I wondered, what on earth do I have to offer? The last time I checked, reading as a hobby (or buying expensive books for that matter) is not really that profitable, unless Im talented enough to make Huntington or Fukuyama sound like epic legends, with interchangeable voices (oh, and I dont even read out loud). Cooking takes up too much energy, time and more money, while babysitting—lets not get there. This leads me to studying—which Im afraid I have cashed on for quite some time now so Im leaving it alone, and writing. Ooh.

Ah, the lure of words. Ever wondered how you can actually put your creative writing juices to good use-- and I mean ‘good-goody-good’ in financial terms? You’ve probably heard about ghost writing, or contributing to magazines or newspapers—the classic sidelines for creative writers. In this age of bloggers and new media, paid advertising via posts can be a quick way for you to earn some money, and some love (love, thats important!). Hell-- for all I know, a friend of mine, may have paid her maternity bills via her sweet little posts which can range from furniture, game reviews, referrals and beauty products. Wow, right? Its called PayPerPost, honey. You get to choose a topic you are interested in, write about it, blog it, and voila! Ka-ching.

No fussy talks here, you have the prerogative to stay personal, and you get paid in the end (very important!). So if you think you've got it and ready to roll, read the blog ethics and off you go!

I wonder how many posts to go, to fund a weekend in Macau... Hmm...

Friday, April 18, 2008

Random (again)

A colleague of mine retorted: ‘Well, Im not really channelling ‘Chubby Huggy’ or anything. I just felt like Im a foodie these day?
Me: Im sorry?
Colleague: Chubby Huggy lah. You know him right?
Sino si Chuggy Huggy?? Napadami lang kaya sya ng kain nang wages??

Ah. Chubby Hubby.


Patawa 101:
You were almost done with a juicy blog entry when the object of your ‘kwento’ gives your phone a ring, in pronto. You almost jumped up from your seat, and with sweaty hands you try to make pleasant conversation. Afterwards, you’re just so paranoid, you decided not to post the juicy bit of story. Not now. Not yet.


Food Review#1: Olio Dome's Capellini Miso Salmon Fillet Pasta

Where: Holland V. When: 15 April, 8ish pm.

Place: was okay. very few people (ugh. tell tale signs)

Service: was quite good. tin and I were seated further back, so whenever we wanted to ask for something, I had to wave, like crazy.

Ordered: the Thai Chicken Salad chorva for aperitifs, then the said main course, becuase--well, its their 'chef's recommendation' (so said the menu)

Servings: As looks can be decieving, it looked small. But I can't seem to finish mine. Why? becuase...

Taste: Its sweet. yes, like dessert! I can't believe it--I know it is a 'somewhat glamorised' Carbonara with Salmon and caviar, but I ve tasted other versions before. I like Carbonara as much as Putanesca, but this is too much. Instead of eating the thing to the last pasta becuase it tasted good, we finished it becuase we didn't want to waste. The Salmon was ok--not that compensating. Frankly, it was an all-in-one meal: main course and dessert. Ugh.

Verdict: Nah--not for us probably. Not coming back. Sorry.
pic (inset): tintin, before learning the sad truth.

Brunch, Fridays and Gerls

A couple of girlfriends and I had a sort-of brunch (very quick, as it was a weekday—name two people who ‘brunch’ on office hours and I’ll hand you four. Hah!) and for some un-academic reason, our conversation led to what ‘wiffs’ we wear:

C: Kiehl’s, and its giving me a headache. I still wear it though.
L: You should borrow Rica’s scent—its called whiteflower. No headaches for you.
(well! Someone’s been making fun of my ‘auntie’ smell)
F:Rica, I read your blog, and tried NR. Geez—was it a deodoriser?
Me (mgaputangina nyo): My sister said ‘hospital’, or ‘alcohol’. But it really depends on chemical reaction. The NR has musk, so it takes time to settle.
F: Oh. Well, no way am I getting one.
Me: You shouldn’t (smiles warily). Whats your scent?
F: None, I dont wear any. I smell like me.
(everyone snickers)
G: I dont know why some people like wearing perfumes.
C: Ah, is this an annex to your ‘i dont shave my armpit hairs’ philosophy?
L, F: (to G) you dont??
G: The French dont. Its a cosmopolitan thing (note: everyone looked bewildered)...and whats the point? Does it bother you?
C: Well, yeah...I mean, no offence to you as a person, but make sure I dont see it. Ever.
Me: Okay...smelly, hairy, migraine and bitchy—off you go, you have work to do. Its a Friday, goodnessake—dont have anything else to do, aside from –brunch?

No racial stereotypes will be supported by this blog (entry), so no further queries such as ‘kababayan ba ito?’ or ‘anong lahi’? will be entertained. Then again, I just shot myself. In the head.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

A Major Rant

Singapore opens matchmaking institute in May
SINGAPORE : Singapore will have a new institute that provides
matchmaking services from next month. Called the Matchmaking Institute Southeast Asia, it also provides training to matchmaking companies. Finding love is
getting more difficult because many Singaporeans simply do not have the time. So
the new matchmaking institute aims to give singles a hand.

The Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE) received 44
feedback and queries about matchmaking agencies in 2007. This was up from 37 in
2006 and just 16 the year before. Most were complaints about unsatisfactory
services. A key concern among customers is how their personal data will be
used. So the institute plans to have two databases, both accessible with
consent. One will hold all the personal information submitted by interested
singles, and another will be shared with companies.
"All the companies or matchmakers (...) have to let their clients know that some of the information, but not (their) personal information or contact information, might
be shared with other matchmakers," said Violet Lim, Executive Director, Matching
Institute Southeast Asia. The new institute aims to raise the standards of
matchmaking service in Singapore. It is offering a S$1,000 scholarship to the
first 10 people to sign up for the courses offered. Currently, more than 200
businesses are registered with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory
Authority providing friendship, matchmaking and dating services, up from 192
in April last year. —
CNA /ls

Serious? Are you freakin, kidding me?

caveat: Ive toned this down a bit, because I am very much aware that it might hurt some sensibilities (to the tune of 'langhyang babae ito, porke't may jowa na't masaya, ayaw kaming mga single na biyan ng chance' (in english: we're single, you are not. why are you complaining?)). Anyway, the only piece of advise I can give to 'those' people who claim they can't find the right person, and have not much time doing so, 'therefore fill up the matching making agency forms' pay lots of money and trust a computer can generate a good match is this: if you dont have the time to search for one, what made you so sure you'll have the time to keep one, anyway? Getting the right person does not equate to buying an expensive plant (on one hand, plants need attention as well). You can't just buy it, display it, and leave it in your house while you go about being busy, expecting it to be at its best whenever you're around. Anu ka, hilo?

Talk about institutionalising three things which frankly, I dont think should be related: bad taste, finding love and governance. As if getting a partner from an agency assures you eternal bliss. Hello—if you dont have the time to find a partner or even better, get into a relationship, who says you can afford to keep it? Any reasonable person can see that match making is not the key to this special case of first world countries called ‘underpopulation’. Its called improvement of quality of life, honey. Business execs call it time management, but really—its just about improving your social skills and freeing up some time in your hectic schedule to accomodate a relationship. Its not just about getting some ‘institution’ to fix you up with someone, anu ba. People who are perfect for each other even have troubles in keeping it together. Im not sure if this is ‘baby’ propaganda, and if it is—sadly, they are not getting the point. Why would governments venture into ‘pairing up’ their citizens in the first place, if not for a certain purpose? Boosting the population rate via match making may be cute, it its myopic. How many dysfunctional families can result to such measures which involve speed dating or filling up a form indicating all your likes and dislikes? Getting your people to have kids and have a family is not even supposed to be your business. Relationships, like economic tools are complicated, and believe me—they take time. They are more complicated than birth rates and economic statistics primarily becuase, well—they are not bound by figures and goals ‘towards building the thriving national economy’. They are based on long term decisions which bring about ‘valuables’ that no monetary absolute can peg against, like happiness and love which then again are not as simple as they seem. So please, let your citizens mind their own business, and provide a better life for families instead. Thats basically it. Kung hindi naman kayo parang teenagers mag-isip. Its not just about getting one—its about keeping one.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Its called maternal instinct

I love kids. Not just becuase they are cute. (no, Im not going to justify myself this time. hah.) I grew up with siblings waayy younger than me, so not only did I act as a big sister, I was a surrogate mother, pro bono tutor from preschool to (goodnessake) college, guidance counsellor and cheer leader. It was a very hands on experience, I tell you--I made sweets for a class of 45, made bookmarks for an entire student population, had a say on what book to review and on whether the girl of their dreams is just stuck on traffic (and that, my friends is why she hasn't come along).

Just when I thought Im done with glue, glue stick and anything that can hold anything together (includes rice), I realised that with the recent additions to the tsoleyt brood, plus newbie 'god sons and god daughters (see tsoleyt brood)', Im am no way retiring. My goodness--good thing I love kids.

As for getting one (getting one?? anu yan, grocery item??) on my own--heh. Maybe not anytime soon though. Lets see....

Gee, my fallopian tube made backflips upon seeing this.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Random and Co.

scene from NUS deck:
cutiepie: can you give me some potato (as pronounced) wages?
auntie: you?
ako: oh no, I prefer cash. And some waffles please?


My kumare Meng is in labour. Like now, now na!
At this very moment. 3:35 pm, Thursday, 10 April 2008.
Lets all support her. Lets join our hands and do the hokey pokey while chanting:
'Kobe, Kobe, Kobe kami!'
Akin ang kulot. Papangalanan kong 'Panyang'. heehee.
Breathe Meng, breathe! :)

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

In the News...

Good Morning America has finally caught up with our very own 'Papaya Dance', care of Edu Manzano. Cant help feeling fuzzy all over. Its not even supposed to be relevant or whatever, but it feels like 'good news'. I reckon either one of their writers is Pinoy (very likely), someone's been watching too many youtube videos, or they just find it too funny. Like we all did. Wow. I wonder when this little sunny island of mine (ownership, ika nga) will feature something of that sort--something 'light and fun' under the banner of the Philippines. Their cameran and reporters apparently have this penchant for showing the slums and dirty streets, so any news is bad news.
Newsanchor: In the Philippines, the lavapalooza event is slated today at the...
(Camera: shows CBD, with soldiers and guard dogs milling about)
(Reporter: Will probably say something irrelevant and negative, if not use the dismissive tone)
Me, watching: Say it! Filipinos know how to party. Say something upbeat.
Newsanchor: In other news, people infected with HIV is on the rise in...
Relevant. Great.

Here's the Video:

I remember a good friend of mine, Prof Kirpal Singh of SMU telling me rather animatedly how he was, on his recent trips in Manila--shown how to dance the 'Otso Otso' by (heheh) his gracious hosts, the San Beda Professors. He said we should get it patented, as it might be our own answer to the Indian Bhangra. I love the guy.