Sunday, November 30, 2003

What religion does to my people

I'm searching for interesting pages. Instead, I find what religion can do to people. It is as if the people arguing about God are in the medieval period. I suppose in some ways they are. They are arguing about semantics.

Saturday, November 29, 2003

Regulation of Thought

My absolute love for America lies in the promises of its Constitution and Declaration of Independence. Translated to my experience, this means that a colonized immigrant can come to America and wake up with respect to the history of the world and the actions and effects of American government. This means taking everything that is wonderful with everything that is blasphemous in American culture and politics.

However, I tend to believe that a majority of the people in the United States still need to wake up to the going ons at Washington DC promulgated by neoconservatives who would put forward their fears over the ability of America to address issues of world concern. And damn it, they have hijacked my beloved Republican party and made it into another monster.

While surfing, I found the this warning about HR 3077. A search of the internet resulted in the final write-up. The good news is that funding has been renewed. Bad news is that with all things that fucking Republicans create, they create another layer of bureaucracy which supposedly fucking Republicans HATE!!! What the hell is that???

Signatures on Degrees

I thought I was in bad shape when I received my degree without Chancellor Chang Lin Tien's signature on it. But slanderous has her degree with Herr Gropenfuhrer's handprint all over it.

I feel bad for slanderous, but damn I am high right now!!!

The Last Samurai

While waiting to watch "Matrix Revolutions," I saw the previews of the "Last Samurai" starring Tom Cruise. Unfortunately, I saw the movie in San Francisco which meant that many of the viewers did not appreciate the premise of the Last Samurai. The audience booed and hissed at Tom Cruise specially when it showed that Tom Cruise would be able to hit the sack with a Japanese woman.

Now, I am a fan of Tom Cruise. I saw his magnificent movie "Top Gun" as a freshman in college and the movie appealed to that warrior side of me. The warrior side values glorified death above everything else. A heroic death. Maybe that little part is programmed into every little boy through the actions of testosterone. I just know that ever since I could form thoughts, I had wanted to die a heroic death. I imagined dying on the football field as I crossed the goal line. I imagined dying on the battlefield holding down the line. I imagined dying from shopping at Safeway.

As I grew to understand mass communications and psychology and marketing, I realized that this warrior side is often the target of many ad campaigns. And so it is with the Last Samurai. Who wouldn't want to be the last hero left standing up? Everyone dies except me. Hey, I can go along with that.

However, some people have expressed their reservatiosns. The SO exasperatedly asks, "Why does Tom Cruise have to be the last samurai? Why is a white man the last samurai? Why does Tom Cruise end up shacking with the wife of the samurai that was killed? In real life, that woman would sneak up to Tom Cruise and slit his throat." Others have asked others to boycoot the film.

I will probably not watch Tom Cruise and the Last Samurai in the movies, but I might rent it. For one, there is a good looking Japanese actress in the film. Who knows? It might be another Lucy Liu who had to perform topless in one of her beginning movies. It's an opportunity.

An interesting tidbit was a casting call:


Casting beautiful Asian women for Warner Bros.' The Last Samurai PremiereAfter-party to be held in Westwood on Dec 1st.. Women will be dressed as village women from the film's wardrobe department and mingle 'in character'through the party, helping to create the ambience of ancient Japan, circa 1870's. There is no pay, but a chance to be part of this year's biggest Hollywood premiere with a guest list including Tom Cruise and the rest of The Last Samurai's fantastic cast!!

If interested please forward a picture and information ASAP to:

Cheryl Rave
Entertainment Producer
Obtained from slanderous' journal.

Ah yes, who says that capitalism is dead? If it will sell or make money, they will be done.

Here's a question. If I like women from Asia, does that mean that the exoticization of Asia has enveloped me in a cocoon of conspiracy? Crap, I have all this baggage of decolonization to take care of. Now, I also must deal with exoticization issues? Will it never stop?

Jumps, Starts and AAA

Last night, a cousin of the SO was stranded because of a dead battery. Since she is trying to develop a mature relationship with her parents, we have been coaching her on the art of communicating with the parents. Dead batteries is one of those topics which can set back the creation of mature relationships.

We pointed out to her that it was important to check to make sure that the lights in the car had not been left on. Check! How about the radio. Is it off? Check! And the lights in the inside of the car. Off! This makes sure that the dead battery was not her fault. And by the way, Northern California has been experiencing such cold weather that it is most likely a problem with the battery itself.

We tried to jumpstart the car to no success. We had to call AAA for a jumpstart. I recommend to everyone to obtain a membership to AAA if you own and drive your car. They have a battery service that services your car during daytime hours.

Barbara's Prayer for the Virgin Mary

I am anticipating that this poem will be part of Barbara's next book.

I have been trying to redefine the image of the Virgin Mary in the last few years. The difficulty has been to find the process. How does one change what one has been taught from the earliest age? How do you change what you see naturally?

Well, I read the angel-corpse who eats adobong aso at pusa. And visit houses made by Pin@ys.

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

Sophie, oh Sophie, where are thou?

Am I the only one wondering where the wonderful feline has gone? Did the corpse end up having Sophie for merienda or better yet for pulutan? One can simply imagine said corpse licking her wings after a delectable bite of pulutan followed by a case of San Miguel dark beer. (Which reminds me, now that I have killed enough taste buds perhaps it is time to taste San Miguel Negra.)

There used to be a black cat who just loved to go into my apartment and other apartments in the complex. She just loved attention. She purred and rubbed herself all over the denizens of said complex. Whenever I opened the door, she would come down from the second floor and happily meow to come in. While most other cats are snobs, this one was starved for attention.

Which now makes me think of cat adobo. Why do Pin@ys eat dogs and not eat cats? For the life of me, one would think that they would also eat cats. Is this just discrimination? Hmm, I better ask the corpse.

Unicorn with a Horn

Well, apparently, I am an innocent who happens to be a female exhibitionist who is banished to the 8th level of hell. I would prefer to be a voyeur, but in life you can't get what you want all the time. I've been working on the website and have been looking for photos and stuff that I can place in the website.

You are Form 3, Unicorn: The Innocent.

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

tests, tests and more tests

I simply am confused as to how Sunny is only 15.8% geek. I know that he programs in several computer languages. I know he definitely makes his own webpages. (By the way, mine will soon be up.) He's probably solved a Rubik's cube because he's Pin@y.

He's gotta be a fan of Star Trek (Trekkie). All FIVE series! All SEVEN movies! He must have seen them ALL! Multiple times! He must own the DVD and VHS of the Star Trek series! Like ME! I think he cut out in the middle of the test. Or else, he's not even trying. I bet you that a student probably knocked on the door for office hours.

We'll see what he gets in the Ultimate Personality Test. Hehehe. Shh, he's supposed to be grading papers right now. I'm just distracting him a little bit.

There is a certain charm however to taking these quizzes. It reveals a little bit of ourselves. For example, that personality test is probably more accurate than I would prefer. Moi? An exhibitionist? Perhaps an avenging angel. But definitely not an exhibitionist angel. Just because I dream of standing in front of a podium and giving a political speech does not mean that I am an exhibitionist. Sure, I love the limelight, but only when it's front of thousands of people. With respect to that political stuff, yes, I am trying to convince my friend to run for city council, congress, and the US Senate. How cool would that be? Hi Elaine!!!

Monday, November 24, 2003


I always thought that I was a voyeur. Man, I just love to sit and watch things happen. But instead, my personality is that of an exhibitionist. Maybe I should retake the test.


The ULTIMATE personality test
brought to you by Quizilla
Dreaming of Adobo

Well, after confusing myself, let's deconfuse by the power of cooking. The wilyfilipino has thrown the proverbial palayok of invitation into the wide world of the internet for an adobo blog entry . However, the SO asked if it would be possible to actually hold a physical gathering of the adobo hunter-gatherers preferably in a large room while they were bringing their adobo concoctions.

And if the party would hold up to the messed Pin@y standards of having a grand prize, first prize etc, I would have to enter the whole cooking frenzy. But, since we and specifically I am decolonizing, I have begun to think that being the best is not always the point. (Hell, look at Apo Marcos and where being the best brought him. Dictatorship. Sometimes, I think that there is a colonialist conspiracy which teaches Pin@ys all the messed up ways so that the Pin@y community will never gain the political and economic power which we can exert. Teach the Filipinos that being the best is important so that they will rip their country and their local communities to shreds.

So, we probably should not have a grand prize etc etc because it only introduces a sense of competition which is not exactly what we desire. Let's face it, we are no longer in grade school and don't need to build each other's ego. If you wanted to go do that, you should go to soc.culture.filipino. They have tons of people waiting to do just that. I am sure that your adobo is out of this world. Did you bring enough for twenty people though?

Thus, we have what you would call a taste test extravaganza. Does anyone think that there is hope for an adobo gathering? I have already heard that Barbara is ready to bring laing. The SO was thinking of hosting the event, so if you all ask nicely, she just might. We can ask the fallen angel what kind of wine goes with twenty pots of adobo. Who knows? The fallen angel might cook her own version of adobo. Wouldn't that be a sight? Mmm, corpse-adobo.

The one thing though is that people who are going to enter the adobo taste test extravaganza really should research where their recipe comes from. Is it something you learned from your mother or your yaya? Where in the Philippines were they from? Why do you put corn in your adobo? Heck, why do you put green peppers in your adobo? So, the fried eggs that are so tasty are also in adobo? Hmmm. Yes, we want titillation and ecstacy, but we also want to know if you are pulling our legs and winging it.

With the insistence of the SO, I ended up taking the gender test. I had always thought that I had a balance of female-male energy. Heck for the longest time, I was wondering about my sexuality. Was I gay or not?

And how can I not wonder about my sexuality? I used to cut out pictures of women in those beautiful long evening gowns. I would stare at the faces of models on Cosmopolitan and marvel at their beauty and make-up style. I yearned to style the hair of the models. But of course, while I fantasized about these models, I would also fantasize about them going to bed with me. Can you imagine me, the Seducing Hairstylist cum Fashion Designer?

(me, with a very high pitched voice proclaiming gayhood) Oh! Come sit down my deahhr!!! Are you call comfy? What hair style do we want? Oh, we want short and sassy? All the more to attract the boys? Wash the hair. Then, seduce the client with a deep voice saying, "You have very beautiful eyes. I haven't seen eyes such mystery since looking at this Mary Magdalene's eyes in my dreams."

Bwahahhahah! Hmm, I wonder if I can wear a cape as a hairstylist? Charing!!! But of course, just like with other aspects of my life, I would get bored with the drudgery of everyday life of a hairstylist. All that curling of hair, cutting of hair, seducing of clients. I am sure that it would all get too boring. Although, I certainly bought into the fantasy of Warren Beatty and his hair stylist who sleeps around in that movie Shampoo.

And yes, I was also interested in fashion design. What can I say? I love the female form. One credit to Andoy Cunanan was that he ended the career of the maverick fashion designer Gianni Versace. Now, I believe it was Bill Blass who said something like "Versace butchered the female form. His clothing was not flattering to the female form at all." But to be fair (not like those liars at Fox News who lie and lie and lie and toss red herrings all about), I believe Versace was also honored with an exhibit at the Museum of Modern art in New York City.

But back to my sexuality. To tell you the truth, if the measure of gayness was only limited to evening gowns, hair styling, make-up and making esctatic love to women, then hell yeah, I would be gay. But, there's just that one thing about being gay that I have no attraction for. Men. Who the hell would want to sleep with men? They are stupid, dumb and can barely think with two heads. Give me the softness of women, their gentle caresses and I can style their hair any time. Oh, by the way, apparently, the test could calculate with 86% certainty that I am female.

You know, for every question, we track very carefully what each gender answers. This allows us to guess with the utmost accuracy what you are. And in the rare case where we guess incorrectly (like now), we have the opportunity to learn from nature's mistake. You.

People like you, who walk the scary line between man and woman, are *very* helpful in understanding exactlywhat it means to be human. Thanks, and good luck.

Hmm, if I am a female who likes other females, does that mean that I am a lesbian? Shit, I don't feel the urge to buy myself a Harley-Davidson motorcycle or do other lesbian stuff. Well, except to sleep around with other women who are not lesbians. But then, wouldn't I just be a woman thinking she's a lesbian who does not like other women so in reality I am just a man who is really a woman?

Sunday, November 23, 2003

Barbara Pulmano Reyes

One of the recent additions to the links page is Barbara Pulmano Reyes. I have known Barbara for about five years and have been in awe of her for at least nine years. The first time I saw Barbara read was at "Flipside" a show sponsored sometime in the mid-1990's by Maganda magazine and Pangit, the graduate student group at Berkeley.

I was videotaping the whole event and was really critical in my head of the many Pin@y performers. I was still in my lack of Pin@y pride days (no excuses, I'm just slower than everyone else). Anyways, the show that evening featured :

A Pin@y folk song singer who blew everyone away with high voice.
Michella Gravange with guitarist who made me write poems.
A Pin@y urban cowboy, and some others and:
Barbara Pulmano Reyes

I should say that I was critical, but my brain was being blown away by the great talent of everyone. Then, Barbara hit like a storm. My first impression was "What the f*ck!?!" You see, Barbara had tatooes on her arms way before it became a fashion statement. She had huge tatooes of alibata or baybayin on one arm and another set of tatooes on the other arm. Barbara was not an ordinary woman. In fact, I bet you that she scared the shit out of every single guy in the room.

She then began to read one of those typical boy-angst-me-against-the-world poem that talks about the Pin@y's brown arms and brown skin. Again, early to mid-90's, this stuff was just fresh off the box. The meter was all OFF to me because I had been raised on Frost and the standard Western hegemonic poetics. And, more importantly, I did not have MTV. I was a twentysomething graduate student nerd thinking about Pin@y identity and Barbara Pulmano Reyes smacks me in the face. It was an epiphany.

The epiphany was not a eureka moment in which the whole world becomes clear for an instant. No, the epiphany was seeing a Filipina who was absolutely outstanding who has a brain to say something in poetics. My epiphany was not shared by my friends in Pangit. In fact, we watched the videos again that same night. Most of them were not aware that a supernova just exploded in front of their faces. Most of them laughed at the non-conformity and the appearance of Barbara. I only wanted to see her part on the video so that I could make sure that I saw a supernova explode. And you know what? I did, I did see a supernova explode.

One of the striking inconsistencies that is so apparent and so jarring with Barbara is that she writes love poems while she has massive tatooes on her arms. What is more contradictory in the Pin@y mind than that? It certainly made me wonder. You see, I did not see too many intelligent and visionary performers in the mid-1990's. So when someone reads like a woman in love, but that very same woman also has tatooes which is the symbol of prison life in the Philippines, well, my entire world has been turned upside down. You know, the inevitable questions arise. What makes her tick? Why does she do the things that she does?

After a few years, I managed to actually get to know Barbara and I was one of the first people to read her poem "Anthropological" which is in her latest book Gravities of Center . When I read Anthropological, it was like seeing that supernova explode in my mind once more. FINALLY! Barbara has written a poem that went beyond the raw emotions of angst, love and emotions and went into the tearful diasporic history of the Pin@y people. The poem was revealing and disturbing for the truths that are uncovered. It was the first time I saw the death of a thousand Filipinos in the letters of a poem. Pin@ys were skewered, Pin@ys were lanced, Pin@ys were shot in the middle of the page. Anthropological is a seminal work in poetry.

To end this paean to Barbara Pulmano Reyes, I'll tell you that she is working on a second book of poetry.

The Big Game

Well, Cal defeated Stanfurd 28-16 in the 106th Big Game. It was quite exciting watching the second half, although the first half of the game was plain misery because of the 0-10 score.

On Monday, the Rally Committee will parade the ax around the campus going to Sproul Hall, Dwinelle Hall, then 1 PSL which I believe they now call Pimentel Hall. If around, I will probably photograph that adventure.

To all those Old Blues which I am now a part of, can you believe that we beat USC? How about Washington? Wow, it has been a long wait.

Saturday, November 22, 2003

The Eight Level

Hehehehe. I am sure that Sunny will not outscore me on this one.

The Dante's Inferno Test has banished you to the Eigth Level of Hell - the Malebolge!

The Dante's Inferno Test has banished you to the Eigth Level of Hell - the Malebolge!
Here is how you matched up against all the levels:
Purgatory (Repenting Believers)Very Low
Level 1 - Limbo (Virtuous Non-Believers)Low
Level 2 (Lustful)High
Level 3 (Gluttonous)Moderate
Level 4 (Prodigal and Avaricious)Moderate
Level 5 (Wrathful and Gloomy)High
Level 6 - The City of Dis (Heretics)Low
Level 7 (Violent)High
Level 8- the Malebolge (Fraudulent, Malicious, Panderers)Very High
Level 9 - Cocytus (Treacherous)Low

Take the Dante Inferno Hell Test

Friday, November 21, 2003

How much of a geek are you?

I am 27.81065% Total Geek. I lost some points because I don't do my own computer programming.

Somehow, Sunny will beat me in this one. I know it for sure.
Farewell, Leroy

Gene Anthony Ray who played the dancer Leroy in the television show Fame passed away recently. In my analysis of lives, I always thought that Mr. Ray should have hit it big. But just like with anyone, sometimes I can be wrong. I always thought that all he had to do was play the character Leroy and he could pretty much do whatever it was that he wanted.

But I am limiting myself on the measures of success. Perhaps Mr. Ray was successful in his own right. After all, he was a star in the movie as well as the television show. Heck, he was larger than Janet Jackson during those years. Janet had not been knifed by the finest plastic surgeons yet. She was normal just like her brother. Well, normal in appearance, at the very least.

Leroy, I will remember your name.

Former Filipinos

Rodel Rodis writes an opinion column for the Philippine News. His latest essay is amusing.

America can learn a great deal from how Filipinos have dealt with the integration of various ethnic and cultural groups into the Filipino political mainstream.

Hmm, yes indeed. America really needs to know how Filipinos have dealt with the Itas and the indigenous people. How about the political power which have been given to the Muslims in Mindanao? Absolutely! We need more of that education to come to America. Of course, he does cite members of minority groups in the Philippines who eventually became presidents or politicos. I can only assume that this somehow balances out the current policy of the Philippines with respect to indigenous people and Moslems and non-Tagalog speakers.

However, Rodis does cite what makes one an American or not an American. Apparently, it's all about knowing how many homeruns Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron hit. In which case, I do not qualify as an American.

But give Rodis a fair shake. It's difficult to define culture in America and he's trying to encompass such a wide nebulous concept into a 1000 word opinion on "former Filipinos."

In case you are wondering, I'm Filipino, American, Filipino-American and Pin@y. Pin@y is my version of pinoy/pinay.

Tung-Yen Lin & Big Game

Have you ever wondered how freeways and massive high rise buildings are supported? The work of Tung-Yen Lin was a key factor in the development of construction technologies. He passed away this past Saturday.

I mention this as the Big Game is upon us. I passed on documenting the bonfire rally tonight to be contemplative. To think of other things besides a football game that dominates the minds of Berkeley and Stanford students.

But as you can see, it's still in the back of my mind.
The King of Pop

Once more, Michael Jackson has grabbed the headlines again. And once again, the allegations are for child molestation. The first time I saw Michael Jackson with Emmanuel Lewis and Brooke Shields attending the Grammy's or some other award show, I immediately had my suspicions about Jackson being a pedophile. But, suspicions are just opinions.

Ten years ago, there was the first allegation of pedophilia against Mr. Jackson. That was settled when the two kids entered into an agreement to not disclose what happened. Michael was never prosecuted for that incident most likely because of a lack of witnesses and proof. Geminiwalker has written a very good discussion on the Mystery of Michael Jackson if you are interested in knowing more.

Sidenote: I heard rumors that the butler and maid were Pin@ys. When the police was getting ready to interview everyone, the butler and maid supposedly went back to the Philippines. If anyone out there knows if this is true, create your own blog and link back to mine.

But let us discuss money. Here we have once more a trial of sorts for the power of money. We had a trial with the power of money with the OJ Simpson case. Verdict: Money makes OJ not guilty; Power of Money 1, Law Enforcement 0.

This is great for those who are capitalists because it supports the theory that in America, race will not matter if you have enough money. I would like to think that this is true because it is the last place where I think minorities can go for equal protection.

Michael had his first pedophilia case and it was resolved with multi-million dollars. What I remember from the case was something like $10 million to $17 million. At any rate, if you had invested that since, you would have made a lot of money so long as you were not so greedy. Verdict: Power of Money 2, Law Enforcement 0.

So now, with a $3 million dollar bail, Michael Jackson is out and about in Las Vegas. That is a lot of money for bail. But, it is just another methodology in which money is used in society. It will be interesting to see if the District Attorney Tom Sneddon is able to get Michael Jackson. If he can not, he's just another incompetent in civil service.

Run, Michael, run! They are after your black hide. Wait, you no longer have a hide. You have a synthetic WHITE fabric stretched out over you. Hmm, yet another instance of money being used to change appearances.

Thursday, November 20, 2003

Preening Fallen Angels

From the corpse that turned into an angel that fell from the heavens:

So I preen not just because I'm vain (though enchantingly so, don't you think?). I preen because I am a decolonized Filipino!.

You know, only the avant corpse can get away with preening like this in front of 9 million peeps staring.

Does this mean that as a decolonizing pipit, I can also begin to preen and strut in front of my barkada of manongs? Hmm, I bet you more and more of the resting figures of Pin@y history will start to drop on by to this little karinderia by the sea.

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

The Fallen Angel on Hay(na)ku

The post avant speaks about hay(na)ku

... notwithstanding having concocted it with Richard Brautigan's and Jack Kerouac's help -- Thanks for the shout-out, Tatang Rhett, but the form wasn't cooked from just from the Flips Listserve...and, hey, the involvement of these American poets -- seems apt since it's a Filipino but "diasporic" form.

Thanks for the clarification, Fallen Angel. I should mention that I have joined the hay(na)ku craze in the blogpage called Hay(na)ku, Tatang! I'm celebrating life's simplicity.

The Colonized Marrying the Colonizer

I was having dinner with a friend when she asked me, "What should I tell my students when they see that I am dating a white guy?"

My initial reaction to this question was "It's none of their business." But then again, if a student asks a professor this question, they have brass balls and they deserve a proper answer.

The SO thinks that there are actually two types of Filipinas who marry white guys. The first type is the woman who wants the green card (mail order brides). America is the saving grace/bread/last hope so if the only way to get to America is to marry someone with a green card, then so be it.

Now, I personally don't look down on this type of woman (mail-order brides). I lived in the Philippines and can remember looking at the songhits magazine and wishing that men could put ads so that some beautiful white woman would pick me and fly me off to America. Poverty is so rampant, and life is so difficult in the Philippines that America is more preferable. I still believe this thought to this day. (Now you know where I stand when it comes to immigration.)

The second type of woman is the Pinay who is so powerful, so smart, so intelligent that she intimidates the living hell/bejesus/daylights out of Pinoy men whether they be from the Philippines or the US of A. You know they type. They don't take any non-sense or bullshit from the guys. They look at the man and instantly know that they can't cook, clean the bathroom, or take care of the kids, or get a job. So, why should they consider them as a life partner?

In general, I believe that Pinoys (from the Phil or from US of A) want women who will serve them, never tell them that they are wrong and will tolerate their stupid ways (alcoholism, gambling, philandering). On the other hand, I am of the lazy type of man. I personally want a woman who is smarter, faster, better than I am because the world is a mean and nasty place to live in. The better my woman warrior/protector is, the better off I am. I am lucky to have a Pinay who actually accepts me for who I am.

There are certainly some issues with marrying the colonizer. Thankfully, I don't have to face such challenges. I believe though that the goal of life is to be happy. If you are faced with marrying someone who will abuse you and marrying someone who will die to give you the world, it's a no-brainer choice to me.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Hehehehe. I am an antithesis.

You are Agent Smith-
You are Agent Smith, from "The Matrix."
No one would ever want to run into you in a
dark alley. Cold as steel, tough as a rock,
things are your way or the highway.

What Matrix Persona Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

I always thought that I would look good in black. Now I know that I do. If I change some of my answers, I end up being Neo. But I think this suit fits me well. Don't you?

Monday, November 17, 2003


Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

I took the science fiction character test and I ended up with Elrond. Not bad. But there were a few questions which made me blush because sometimes, you just never know.

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

Do you see what I mean?
I can't believe it!!!

This just shows you how well you can do when you can eliminate some of the choices in a multiple choice exam. I pretty much guessed on 7 of the questions.

As Good As Your Word: A Vocabulary Quiz
Fantabulous! You know how to get your words' worth. Congratulations! You got 10/10 correct.

Check out the vocabulary quiz.

Hay(na)ku: A Poetic form Invented in the 21st Century

One word
Two words
Three words

The Hay(na)ku is that simple. The genesis is from the flips list of Pin@y writers steeping in the rice cookers around the world. Each writer a delightful seed that feeds empty souls surfing the internet for a semblance of culture. Oh, luto na! Kain na tayo!!!

Pinoy Sexuality; Pinoy Religion

After dinner, we had dinner with two friends last night at Sinugba. While waiting to go to what can only be described as a haven of Pin@y food in Daly City, I got into a discussion with them about possible antholigies on writings by Pilipino men. We were thinking that we should come out with something.

Of course, the first thing we thought was the topic. What should it be all about? Well, we could discuss colonialism and how it continuously affects us. How about sexuality? God knows that I eventually have to throw out into the world how I daydreamed about the paradox of the Virgin Mary. It is the underlying foundation to my obsession of capturing the image in the faces of Pin@ys. Well, speaking of the Virgin Mary, why not religion? What have been the effects of religion on the Pilipino male pscyhe?

One of these days, I would like to see that anthology because it will explain all the paradoxes about Pinoys. As Pilipinos, we do some unkind, confusing and very messed up things to our family and our community. It's probably a residual of having been hunted in the plains of Africa 10,000 years ago. But, it would be interesting to find and shine a light on so that we don't continue our saga of being out of focus.

Sunday, November 16, 2003

Going Home to a Landscape

Tonight was a reading for the anthology at Bindlestiff Theatre in the heart of the Mission district. Ahh, yes, the Mission, where men wounded from life's wars go to disappear and hide. Bindlestiff is located in one of the seedier areas of San Francisco. Amidst the drunks sleeping/delaying the inevitable hangover, amidst the crack-induced delusions, amidst the Pin@ys walking to and from work, Bindlestiff stands as one of the few Filipino theatre centers in the US.

The studio will move at the end of the year across the street. To complete that move, they will need $11,000. If you can. please give till it hurts. A year later, more likely several years later what with the way construction of buildings go, Bindlestiff will move into a new theatre. For that, they will need $1.5 million. You should give some money because Bindlestiff is one of the few venues which feature Pin@y artists. It is the place where I saw Pin@ys in theatre for the first time.

The current chairperson of the Bindlestiff collective is Olivia Malabuyo, poetess, actress, videographer, artist, all-around great person. Her vision and dedication has focused the group for the move. It is mind-boggling to think what they will have to accomplish in the next year or so. You can help make it happen with donations.
Ron Silliman

One of the earliest people who attached a link to karinderia is Ron Silliman. To tell you the truth, I don't know why he linked to my website, but when I see the people in his blogroll, I feel honored.

If you ever want to discuss poetry to the bones, check out his blog. His discussions, logic and writing is simply beautiful. A work of ordered art. A gift from God. Writing so clear even a simple man could understand the essence if not specifics.

At this point in my life when I strain the bonds of colonialism to eventually break the chains which hold my spirit and soul, I look for writings like Ron's.

Poetry as a way of life!!!

Philosophy, anyone?

Did I hear someone complain that the only type of reading they get from the karinderia is of the light variety?


Well, get your boots off, sit back, get your diapers on, and read the Council for Research and Philosophy. If this web page does not make you cry, you certainly belong in graduate school in philosophy. There is a link there for the philosophy of the Philippines. It's in Series III.

Rediscovering some Old Friends

This is the reason I like corpsepoetics so much. Just when I have forgotten a link, up it comes once more. Check out Our Own Voice.

Every time I look at the web address, I get choked up by the "oov." I suppose it's the prude in me. OOV, it's like an egg... OVA!!! Oh, those are bad thoughts! Bad thoughts! You will burn in hell for thinking of sexuality.

Decolonization & Poetry

The avant-garde poet Eileen Tabios deals with decolonization in her poetry by subverting the English language. To explain it more fully, check out Leny Strobel's view point.
What is Decolonization?

I have been analyzing PCN through various frameworks. One of those frameworks is that of colonization/decolonization. I must admit, this is one that makes most sense to me with respect to my personal experience. The following paper is written by Laenui and contains perspectives by Ver Enriquez, a Filipino Professor of Psychology.
God Help Kalipornya

Herr Gropenfuhrer is now the governor of Kalipornya. God help us all.

The term was first read in Gary Treudeaus' political commentary "Doonesbury."

Saturday, November 15, 2003

Pilipino Cultural Night

I have been researching PCN because I have to prepare for a lecture on it. While surfing the internet, I found Hitting Critical Mass which is a journal devoted to analysis of Asian-American culture.

One view on PCN has been raised by Theo Gonzalves.

Although the intent of the show varies according to the organizing group (perhaps to demonstrate the cultural significance of the Filipino in America) the effects of the shows leave viewers with a static notion of "culture." In this sense, the political aspects of subversion, defiant cultural assertion, and a vibrant re-articulation of the racial order are left behind, in favor of increased technical mastery of performance and concomitant symptoms of spectacle and extravagance a 16 Cecil B. DeMille

I have to further digest the paper to make a comment on it.

Friday, November 14, 2003

Elynia S. Mabanglo

I have been reading the poetry book "Invitation of the Imperialist" by Elynia S. Mabanglo.

The poems discuss the current situation of diaspora for Filipinas. The topics range from imperialism to letters home from Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, and Singapore. The poems are rich in the language of Tagalog and the emotions of a Pin@y.

I suggest to everyone to purchase the book. A note of caution. The English translation does not completely capture the beauty of the poems. It is a sad fact that translations from Pin@y languages to English are inadequate. But if you know some Tagalog, with a dictionary, you will see some of the soul of the Pin@y people.
In Memoriam

Beng Hernandez was a young poet/activist killed in Arakan Valley, Philippines in 2002. The article can be read in the kilometer64 yahoogroups.

I read the her Philippine native language poem (sorry, I don’t know what language it is in) and immediately made a connection. The translation helped, but the raw power and message in the original was quite strong.

Thursday, November 13, 2003

Privilege and entitlement

Professor Leny Strobel said the following in her November 6 entry:

A more thoughtful Pinay told me that perhaps given his limited knowledge and experience in Filipino America, my question was beyond his i thought more about it, i relented and felt that I had reacted in an imperial manner - "how dare he not meet my expectations!" -- and was exercising my sense of privilege and entitlement to a "proper" lecture by someone who claims to be an expert.

After much thought on the subject, I must admit that there are a thousand and one possibilities as to why Dean Almario did not give an example of balagtasan. You need three people. A topic must be raised. The topic/responses must be memorized. A performance must be shown. And so on and so on.

I suppose what bothers me or what is still in the back of my head is this lingering thought that the educational system in the Philippines was created to induce a glow of ignorance. That is, memorization is emphasized instead of synthesis. Dates and names carry weight instead of concepts. The details matter and not the theories. Thus leading to a lecture on the technical aspects and the structure of the balagtasan but not to an epiphany.

It's like giving a lecture on sonnets and saying the rhyme scheme is abc-bca-cab-aa. The poem utilizes iambic pentameter. The good sonnet writers are Browning and MacCall. See you all tomorrow.

So perhaps, my critique of Alma Rio's lecture does not really address him so much as it addresses how Filipino professors teach. That the way in which Pin@ys are taught emphasize a memorization of the facts, but no analysis of the process. In this manner, the Philippines is able to find and nurture students who are gifted in the fields of math and verbal utilization. But there are many more types of intellect which are not addressed. These types of geniuses are then left to be on their own.

Almario and becoming a National Artist

As with all things that are Pin@y, becoming a national artist takes a tremendous amount of work. I found the following site which discusses the process for becoming a national artist like Rio Alma.

Leave it to my countrypeople to make sure that all the I's are dotted and all the T's are crossed. Legitimacy is gained through the process of questioning the presenters. The whole thing sounds like a thesis defense from the old days of academia. Questions will come for three hours. Then, the whole career will hang on the opinions of three or four wizened professors.

Now, I just have to find myself copies of the poetry books.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003


Made from bronze in the old days, kulintangs are now poured into shape from molten padlocks. The constant efforts of the Philippine government to subjugate and control the Southern Philippines contributes to the continual destruction of one of the last remaining symbols of resistance to colonization. The kulintang is an indigenous instrument predating even the Moslem religion. With very few narratives that are distinctly from the islands of the Philippines, the kulintang stands as a testament to a group’s desire to maintain its cultural identity and values.

My love affair with the kulintang began while photographing Philippine folk dancing. At first, the notes that I heard were foreign, shrill and ear-splitting. But as time passed and I watched the singkil being performed again and again, those shrill notes evoked in me curiosity. What is the origin of these metal pieces? What is their story?

My search led me to eventually take a class with Master Danongan Kalanduyan. I loved the class because it introduced me to a Filipino culture I did not know. As a side note, I had to go to the land of milk, honey and baseball before I could learn about an indigenous Filipino instrument. Seems awfully perverse that the schools in the Philippines do not teach anything about the kulintang or the Igorot kubing. Both forms were taken to be OTHER in Manila.

What is the ensemble cast of a kulintang? Let’s discuss my favorite – the gandingan. The gandingan is made up of four hanging gongs that form the base for the music. I personally like it because I get to beat things with my left and right hand. But the coordination that is required to keep in time with the rest of the instruments is just outstanding. When I first tried to beat it, the beats I played sped up, slowed down, paused, sped up again to catch the train, and then stopped because of confusion.

My other favorites were the agongs. Two large gongs in the shape of bowls. Depending on where you hit the gongs, you created different sounds. There is a lower tone agong and a higher tone agong. It seemed I had more of a match with playing the agons because I could count and keep time. But as I learned later, keeping time for thirty seconds is absolutely different from keeping time for two minutes.

Then there is the bambadir or the timekeeper. Well, obviously, this was not my favority because for me, time is relative. Depending on how you look at it, slow time can be fast time. Yup, I learned that form physics. But in the music world, time must be kept. Otherwise, chaos and disorder reign. I remember, I was doing the bambadir and I was so off that someone who was reading a book asked me to stop playing.

The last instrument is the drum. Playing the drums means a consistent and timely set of patterns. In learning to play the ensemble, I learned very quickly that I march to my own little music which is set on a relative time scale. For the life of me, I could barely, barely reach the end of the song with the drums.

In the first concert that I played in, I ended up playing what I lovingly call air kulintang. I looked like I was hitting the instrument, but I was really playing the air and hoping I looked like I knew what was going on. It takes a certain amount of dedication and obsession with the kulintang to be able to make it sing. There is memory for the pieces for sure, but there is also an overarching reach for perfection.

As a photographer, I needed to play the kulintang to understand its various moods and emotions. It is only through interaction that I can try to capture the kulintang’s song.

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

For those who wish to contact me, the e-mail is from the domain The username I use is retong999. The contact shown is gobledegook because of e-mail harvesters for spammers.

Monday, November 10, 2003

My future father-in-law will be celebrating his 60th birthday this Friday. As part of the surprise, we had to find a photograph that can be scanned and placed as an edible decorative layer for the cake. The SO and I spent thirty minutes looking for a suitable photograph. It was like traveling through time and space – 1950's college years of the SO's mother, late 1960's wedding nuptials of the SO's parents in Pangasinan, 1970's in California with young children, 1980's with teen-aged children, and 1990's with children graduating from college.

The photo that was eventually chosen featured the SO's father when he was thirty years old. Mr. B is wearing a red shirt with black pants. He has a look of courage in his face. He is confident about his future, yet he has some worries. He has one child. How many more will there be? How long before he can buy his own house? How long before he can be certain of the future?

Thirty years later, Mr B has three accomplished children who can take care of themselves. He has found his peace in this world.

I photographed Palabuniyan Kulintang Ensemble last week at San Francisco State University.

In the last three years, I wondered how to photograph the music of the kulintang. It seemed to me that the static/focused photographs just did not capture the spirit and the movement of many of the songs that I knew and heard. In this series of photographs, I have tried to capture the feeling and the emotion of the music. Some of the photos are long-exposure shots that capture the movement of the songs as they are played.

For those who are interested: Nikon F3HP, Tokina 80-200 f2.8 lens, Fujicolor 800 film. Exposures from 1/4 sec to 8 seconds. F-stops from f2.8 to f8.

Sunday, November 09, 2003

1. Kulintang-Conrad

2. Caroline-Dance1

3. Caroline-Dance2

4. Kalanduyan & Begonia

5. Kalanduyan & Kulintang

6. Kalanduyan & Kulintang 2

7. Kalanduyan & Kulintang 3

8. Kalanduyan & Kulintang 4

9. Kalanduyan & Gandingan

10. Darryl - Dance1

11. Darryl - Dance2

12. Gandingan singing

13. Gandingan

14. Mandirigma 1

15. Mandirigma 2

16. Muse & Warriors 1

17. Drum & Time

18. Michelle - Tiruray 1

19. Tiruray 2

20. Warrior 1

21. Warrior 2

22. Jazz 1

23. Jazz 2
The presidency and a defense of the war

How many days has it been since the war in Iraq started? Was it April of 2003? Since the war has been over, can we now call it the Occupation of Iraq by American forces? Or how about, the Bush war in Iraq so that Bush Jr. can be re-elected?

I wonder what is going on in Bush's head with respect to the war in Iraq. Granted, he was disturbed (as shown in television) with the destruction of the World Trace Center and the damage done to the Pentagon. He was also probably deeply perturbed that the plane that crashed in Pennsylvania was meant for the White House. But anyone who becomes the President of the United States should have already come to grips with the possibility of death. How much do you want the power to be President? Would you give up your life?

Each president I have seen has aged dramatically while occupying the White House. I look at it as a way in which the President is paying for the sins of the United States. It's just like the old tribes who choose a king who will rule for a period of time. After his rule, usually one year, he is sacrificed to the gods and a new king is chosen. It's the same thing with the presidency. You die figuratively if not literally while occupying the White House.

I can not see whether or not Bush Jr. will be reelected. However, what I see is that he is following the same pattern that his father did. Hell, he is even trying to finish off what his father started.


And how about that war? You know what, I might not like the fact that we are in Iraq, but I do realize that this is good/great for business and the economy. The structure of capitalism is predicated on the stimulation of businesses by government. What better stimulus is there than a war? Sure, sure, there can be technological fronts, but the manufacturing centers just are not up to date with respect to technology. We still need the steelworkers and the farmers and the middle of America to be doing something or else the economy will go into a recession in the United States. Want proof? Just look at how the California economic downturn has affected just about everyone in Asia.

And I will give another perspective on the war. Ever since man and woman came into conciousness in nature, it has been a fight and a war for survival. Now that we have nation-states, it will still be a war. Don’t blame the United States for the fact that we are technologically advanced and can kill people by pressing a button. I’m sure that if some other nation state could kill people by pressing a button, they would do it too. Oh, wait, China does it to Tibet. Russia does it to Chechnya. Take it to a country level, the Philippine military kills the poor. That thread also runs in the African continent where instead of a government sponsored murder, there is instead a tribal inspired mass murder. (Of course, there is the troubling double-speak which is used by the US government such as Secretary of War Donald Rumsfeld (“We are not in Vietnam.”).

Peace is the period between wars. War is the period between peace. Conflict is inevitable because humans desire and want things. The only question is whether or not you will be the victim or the oppressor.

The only way I see that the world will come together is if some alien descends from the sky and wants to communicate with earth. You can be assured that the earth will suddenly organize a world government who will have to deal with those aliens.

Saturday, November 08, 2003

Just saw the Matrix Revolutions. It's a good movie, but I'm a tad bit disappointed.

I think that the first and second movies were so good in presenting problems that the producers/writers/directors had a difficult time closing off the questions that were raised in the earlier movies.

Here are some examples of thought lines:

1. How was Agent Smith created after Neo destroyed him?

2. What is the meaning of restarting Zion? If Neo had not come back to rescue Trinity, how does he restart civilization?

3. Where in the world will all those humans who want to get out go?

4. How can two programs create a third program? Sita reference.

5. How long will the peace last? Knowing that there are humans plugged in, how long before the humans try to free the others?

6. How come Bain was not tied down? Considering he was a suspect, why not put him in a brig? Why did the machines let Bain live? They killed everyone else. What's up with that?

I thought that a better resolution is that Neo should have figured out how to destroy machines in the real world through his thought. Then, he teaches everyone how to do it. But I suppose, then Neo would not be the only ONE.

I'll probably stick to Movies One and Two. I heard though that they will have a massively multi-player online game that will show the continuation of the Matrix. Perhaps I'll see you there.

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

While reading the San Francisco Chronicle during lunch, I saw an article about the attitudes of minorities with respect to discrimination in the workplace. No big deal because racism does not exist, right? (Or so most people of the dominant group maintain.) At any rate, the employer is the US government's Department of Justice. This is the same group of people who are supposed to protect people's rights in the United States.

Check out the report at The Memory Hole.

Monday, November 03, 2003

The Arm of God

The significant other (SO) is included in the anthology
Going Home to a Landscape, which is published by
Calyx. As part of the book launch, the SO read in the first of a series of public readings at Pusod this past weekend.

The SO read several poems about Angel Island from her chapbook "My life as a duwende." I sometimes do not try to read the SO's poetry because I am often confused by the duality/multiplicity of her life. Sometimes, I wonder just how many people inhabit the SO's body. The following is a list of the many aspects of my future wife.

There is the woman that I fell in love with. Then, there is the kali master, which is the first personality that I saw in a Maganda magazine issue launch. Then there is the kid who likes to ride the shopping carts in the parking lot of Costco. Of course, there is the poet. And how can we forget about the aspiring culinary chef who neither keeps time nor uses measuring cups or spoons when cooking? Oh, oh, how about the cerebral mechanic who lovingly takes care of a 1969 Mustang?

Are there more? Well, there is the testosterone-filled driver who curses at the slightest hint that a car will merge into the same freeway lane that said driver occupies. There's a sports lunatic personality which will play with guys in a game of touch football that will degenerate into tackle football. Then there's a personality of a child who watches two boxers pummel each other at the feet of her grandfather. And since we're discussing sports, there's the SO who enjoys a great game of basketball, specially the playoffs when her schoolmate Jason Kidd is beating the pants out of the Eastern conference.

What does surprise me most of all is that in the midst of all these personalities/people there is the Poet. I don't really get to see the poet unless of course it's a poetry reading. The poet manages to see things that I do not see. The poet understands where those wrinkles in a person's face comes from. The poet knows exactly the cry of the old woman weaving the banig. The poet knows the strife in the land of Mindanao. The poet knows the desperate gasp of Tagalog in the Philippines. The poet sees the great turtles of the oceans and feels the freedom of flying in the air. The poet sees the past and writes a poem that will wring the tears from rock. The poet will make you uncomfortable with her words of truth. The poet says, "Yes, you have a good life. Now why are you not out there helping others?"

I suggest you visit her blog and download the chapbook. Then, turn to page 22 and read the poem "this building."

I was happily going along during the night of "Araw ng Patay" when the poet started reading "this building." Now, there are a few times when I look at the SO and suddenly, it's not the SO I know. A different personality has replaced the SO that I know. It happened last Saturday while she was reading the poem.

How can I describe this? It's like everyone is reading their nice poem. We are all celebrating a book launch. Then out of nowhere, all these ghosts from angel island came in through the doors and the windows to watch their story be told. There was silence after the poet read the poem. There was no applause. I myself felt disturbed by it. It was not a nice poem to celebrate a book launch. It was a poem written for the future so that the future can know what it means to live in this world.

Sometimes, the poet scares me because of her ability to see things beyond my ken. Sometimes, the poet confuses me because of her ability to open up to things. Sometimes, the poet makes me happy because she picked me like a bumblebee choosing a flower.

For the Poet. Because she dedicated duwende to me.

Sunday, November 02, 2003

Araw ng Patay

Yesterday was “Araw ng Patay,” a holiday celebrating those who have crossed the veil of life. On the way to a one year birthday party, we had the opportunity to stop by at Tatak Pilipino. I always enjoy visiting Tatak and always spend much more than I can afford. This particular store is located in Union City in California. The store is barely the size of a university classroom, but its offerings are staggering.

On the wall to the left are the latest books imported from the Philippines. Twenty years ago, there was an excuse for Pin@ys to have children ignorant of their culture and heritage. Not anymore. From childrens books to outright academic books dealing with sociology, Tatak offers these tresure trove of knowledge for a small fee. I might even say that for general books, Tatak has an even better selection than most Asian bookstores.

The 20% reduced price books caught the eye of the SO and she gladly pointed them out to me. And so I find myself inundated with the following:

“Man of Earth: An Anthology of Filipino Poetry and Verse from English 1905 to the Mid-50s” Edited by Gemino H. Abad and Edna Z. Manlapaz.

“Efemerides Filipinas” by Mariano Ponce and Jaime C. de Vera, translated into Tagalog by Edgardo M. Tiamson, Terisita A. Alcantara, and Erwin L. Bautista.

“The Discovery of the Igorots” by William Henry Scott.

“The 1980’s: One Act Play,” An Anthology of Winning Works from the Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature.

“The 1980’s: Poetry,” An Anthology of Winning Works from the Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature.

In “Man of Earth,” there is an entry for my uncle Benjamin Ma. Pascual. 13 Sept 1918; Laoag, Ilocos Norte, of peasant parents. Wrote verses and stories; contributed also to the Iloko weekly Bannawag, and translated the Rubaiyat into Iloko. Took up law as a working student. A bibliophile, he was also into painting and clay molding. Was section chief in the bureau of Public Schools; later, professor of English at Philippine Normal School where he took charge of publications at its Language Study Center.


Repulsed by celibate harbors, hills, drydocks,
Frightened by drunken cities, hostile farm,
Night longs for comradeship.

Let her seduce us with her metaphors…
How know her loneliness
When our feet are imbedded in sandbars?

We must have scaffoldings to stand upon
To peer at the still faint-limned loveliness
Across the naked shoulders of the stars.

( Benjamin Ma. Pascual, 1946)

I wonder what in my karma made me feel much closer to my uncle than my father. Perhaps it is the way he loved books like I do. His reality was a wall of books. My dream is a wall of books. Perhaps, it is because all I have from my father are the photographs he took of me as a child on a red blanket. My memories of my father are those made from beer cans, cigarette ashes and chemotherapy. Whereas my memories of my uncle are the wall of books.
There is a response from a.t. (titled chopsuey, dated 2 November 2003) in the angas blog with respect to my comments about Almario's lecture on balagtasan at UC Berkeley.

A.t. makes a valid point. Balagtasan is supposed to be an impromptu version of a showdown of poetry. If in asking for an example of balagtasan, Almario interpreted this as a full throwdown of two opponents and a lakandiwa, then yes, it would have been impossible to stage a balagtasan. There would have been a lack of participants and a lack of preparation for the topic.

In my interpretation, however, what the students really just wanted was an example of a short reading of balagtasan. The thought occurs that Almario had written a book on balagtasan. Arkipelago was supposed to be at the UC Berkeley reading, but unfortunately, representatives were not there. Thus, I would have to wait to examine the book to determine if balagtasan or examples of balagtasan are present in it.

By the way, for those observant readers, I must explicitly state that Almario lectured on balagtasan. The comments directly related to balagtasan were taken by yours truly during the lecture. When I write my personal opinion with respect to balagtasan, I set it off with parenthesis so that it is clear that I hold that opinion and not Almario.

It is ironic to me that the lecture given my Almario contradicts the statements of the writers in the angas blog. Specifically, the nature of an impromptu poetry contest. Almario lectured that the participants had one week to prepare for the event and that the participants actually memorized the material before the event. Yes, I know, this is at the level of splitting hairs. But if we are going to make commentaries on writing, should we not pay attention to the lecturer? I did. [raises the arm... uh-uh... me teacher, me] And I took notes.

Saturday, November 01, 2003

Post-colonial, Other & Object

In reading the angas blog, I came across references to "post-colonial," "Other," and "Object." Since really, I am not an expert on this, I searched the web for some references. I found this essay/primer which might bring to light to those like me, uneducated in the liberal arts.

From what I have read in the primer, KantoGirl says that I am the "Other" and not the "Object" when writing about the Philippines. In contrast, I consider myself the Object and the United States the Other when I am writing about America and the World through my eyes. Isn't it great how I can be both Other and Object at the same time? Who needs drugs when you can just discuss post-colonial theory and blow your mind away?

For those who don't know, my purpose in this blog is to document my experiences in America. I believe that I see the world very differently from Caucasians, African-Americans, Latinos, and other Asian-Americans. I believe that this perspective of seeing must be represented in the knowledge base in order for other people to understand that their actions in government (USA) has varying effects on the population because the population is hetergenous. I write not only about the US but also about the Philippines because American government policy has a direct impact on the world. I choose the Philippines because it is the country of my birth and I can easily research facts and data about the topic. It also does not hurt that I can use my personal experience.

I still have to deal with the statement that I will never know much about the Philippines because 1) I don't sit in traffic for two hours in EDSA and 2) I have an American visa, therefore I am priviledged.

Funny, I don't see myself as priviledged. But then again, there was always this tension about Pin@ys who are in the Philippines and those who have left and try to point out the problems in the Philippines. Philppine Pin@ys always say that those who left are now not part of the Philippines. I must delineate more clearly my thoughts on this.
The newest of our menu is Angas a writer from the Philippines who sees the world very differently from the way I see it. And that is always a good thing because the more diversity we have in the way we see things, the better off we are. Unfortunately for all you uneducated masses out there, if you don't know Tagalog, you are shit out of luck. Her posts are mostly in Tagalog. Perhaps, dear readers, you should go to your parents and ask them to teach you Tagalog. There is just plain no excuse for you not to know your language. [Oh, but if you know another Pin@y language, pardon me.]

Angas, I hope you don't mind my linking to your site. We might differ on opinions, but publicity is always a good thing to increase site traffic.

To all other readers, I suggest using technorati to check out incoming blogs connected to your site.