Sunday, February 27, 2005

Simple Lang

Nothing fancy" is the Pin@y Blog of the Day for 27 February 2005. Longevity and consistency in documenting her life is her mark.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Riches and Old Age

Sometimes, being rich is not enough. Read about Cathy's life and you will see another side of being rich. Sometimes, raising your children and creating bonds with them is a necessary part of life.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

What biological molecule are you?

For those of you not nerdy enough:

You are a pheromone. You are seductive and you know
what you want. You have something about you
that permeates the air and draws people to you.
You can get what you want almost without fail,
like some of the sexiest moths out there.

Which Biological Molecule Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Tuesday, February 22, 2005


Gizzoogle translates sites to a new form of English that is spoken in the rap world.

Drizzay Kings

The SO asked me yesterday if I wanted ta go ta a drag king show from tha streets of tha L-B-C. Initially, I did not want to fo shizzle. It was a Sunday in tha hood. We were going ta our financial group W-H-to-tha-izzich sometizzles stresses me out doggystyle. But, tha SO does not ask fo` th'n often. And oftentimes, her trips is interest'n, fun n straight trippin'. So although, tha Great Brotha was weep'n on a cold Sunday even'n, off ta Jack London Square we went ta see tha show King Heat at tha Oakland Metro .
What key am I in?

C major - the simplest key. You are content with
where you are now, you have what you need. Some
people are happy in C major, but it is up to
you to decide to push yourself further if you
want more from your life.

what key signature are you?
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Monday, February 21, 2005

Drag Kings

The SO asked me yesterday if I wanted to go to a drag king show. Initially, I did not want to. It was a Sunday. We were going to our financial group which sometimes stresses me out. But, the SO does not ask for things often. And oftentimes, her trips are interesting, fun and exciting. So although, the Great Maker was weeping on a cold Sunday evening, off to Jack London Square we went to see the show King Heat at the Oakland Metro.

Sunday, February 20, 2005
King Heat
featuring performances by:
Nappy Grooves
Simone de la Ghetto (of Harlem Shake)
Sile Singleton AKA Luster
Carlos Las Vegas
Roscoe D. Gitchoding
Show - 8:00pm Doors -7:30pm Tickets: $7-10 18+

The location is not on my top ten lists of places to visit in Oakland. The bar is located next to the restaurant strip on Broadway populated by Everett & Jones BBQ, a Chinese seafood restaurant and Nations Burgers. The building was dark; the tables were small; the stage was adequate. But, you must understand. This is not Broadway. This is burlesque if I were alive to see burlesque. This is Off-Off-Off-Off Broadway in New York terms. Minimal lighting, though more than a high school's. Movie house seating, which means that on one side are arrayed a series of metal chairs. An odd prelude to an odd evening.

Lesbians are interesting to me. On the one hand, we have something in common. They love women. I love women! Hooray! And, they are women who love women. I love women who love women! Hooray! On the other hand, some of them are masculine woman who love women. That is where I draw the line. If you start looking too much like a man, or smelling like a man, a buzzer goes off in my head.

Red alert! Red alert! This is a man. This is not cute. This is not sexual. This is not a woman!!!

So, call me Moby Dick out of the ocean last night. I did not know how to react. Should I be aroused? Let me tell you. It's pretty hard to be hard when you are looking at a bunch of females who look like men. Should I be bonding with the men? But in some ways, there were more masculine than I am. I just don't know. Call me Moby.

One interesting thing of note is how the women transform themselves into men. They wear facial hair. I found it interesting because in one way, it completes the illusion of how society sees men. Masculinity is more hair. The closer one looks to animals with fur, the more masculine a person becomes. Now, for those of you balding like me do not lose hope. You should remember that the hair follicles fall out because of an excess of a form of testosterone called DHT. Biologically speaking, if you are balding, you are an uber man. You are testosterone man unbound.

It was a drag king show. Essentially, a woman dresses up as a man and lip-synchs. Now, I am more used to draq queens who actually sing their songs. But I figure, drag kings must be relatively new compared to drag queens. Just wait a few more years. In Pin@y terms, these are women who like to sing karaoke.

Now, being Moby, let us discuss what disturbed / confused me the most. When Papa Dino who is part of Kreatibo was on stage, he had a dancer. Now, I guess they were all getting hot because a nice young woman with a cowboy hat from the audience joined them on stage. Now here's the disturbing part. The nice young cowgirl did some hot and nasty things on stage. Though I should mention that this was with clothes on. Call me Moby ouf of the water. Errr, this is becoming like a sex voyeur thing. Err, shouldn't I be paying more for this? Hell, in San Francisco, it would be $50 at the door. Unlimited in and out. Heck, add the chatelaine in the mix and she would the whole San Francisco art world in a tizzy about a performance act show!!!

Now, the second thing that was disturbing about this was that the guy on stage was dressed like a cholo. Now, being from LA, the last thing I can think of is a cholo being a sexual being. Usually, cholos are packing some guns and getting ready to waste or beat someone up. The last thing I need in my head is a cholo with his belt whipping a nice young thin cowgirl and that nice young cowgirl riding the cholos thigh. Disturbing.

As if that was not enough, at the end of the show, one of the performers starts getting his groove on a woman. Initially, the woman was standing with some heavy breathing with the man. The man started rubbing and dancing Then she sat down. The man continued to rub and shake. Then, her back was being supported by the chair. One of the SO's friends had to push the chairback so that the woman would not fall. Did I mention that the man was about 250 lbs? yup, a rubbing dancing two hundred pound weight. On a not so skinny but apparently quite flexible and durable woman.

I figured, five minutes. Folks, twenty minutes later, it had become a threesome with the fresh young cowgirl. I did not know if I was supposed to be aroused or what. So I did the next best thing. I left for the evening.
Love Isn't Enough

As the SO and I prepare for our wedding, we have heard of statistics that say that 50% of weddings end up in divorce. Now a year or two ago, the stats were one-third. Needless to say I was intrigued by this jump. Hence the link. Nevertheless, the thought that one-third of marriages end in divorce still rattles my brain.

Recent research" suggest that money might not be the root of all evil. But I am not as convinced. I still believe that money becomes one of those things which people focus on for control and easy discussion of life's problems.

When I first started going out with the SO, I figured it would be a good run if I went out with her for two years. Yes, marriage was in the back of the head. But really, I did not have as much to offer her. So yup, yup, I was ready to let go because I already met her. If it was meant to be, I would find her again when I was ready.

Well, two years became three and then five years. Next thing you know, we were talking about marriage. I was stuck in a dead end job and could barely support myself. More specifically, while watching television, she suddenly asks me "Honey, is 2004 a good year to get married?" I felt the noose shrinking around my neck. Ladies, believe me, that nooose is real. The SO suggested marriage and I felt like I could not breathe. But since my Mama did not raise a fool, I quickly settled my poor butt down and talked to the SO about the plan.

I don't like surprises and neither does any man. My belief is open communications to expectations. You all need to talk to him and brief him on what you are planning. Otherwise, expectations fall and divorce comes a knocking. If he does not want children, and you do, pack up your bags. If you are twenty and think you don't want children, better do some research with your cousins who have children. Carry that baby around. Make sure you really don't want one of those cute little tykes. You are going against 10,000 years of evolution.

At any rate, the SO and I went through a planning of our future. I was feeling out of sorts at work. Haggard from all the crap. I needed to see where I was going. Believe me, it shooked me up pretty good to see that I could have children in two or three years. That we needed a house. That we needed this or that. Two children by four or five years. Three children after six or seven years. Yikes! With a progression like that, your fatherly instintcs kick in or you leave.

Fast-forward to last night. The SO and I are in a financial group. She tells the group that if I had gone one way or another with my life, I probably would not be waiting for the wedding bells. She never told me this in those precise words. I didn't even know that I was being tested. But in the end, just like when I determined if she is a good enough person to raise my children or when I determined if she had a good heart, she was judging if I could provide for the family.

There is no shame in saying that love is not enough. Many times, people marry for love. But if they have a bitterness welling in them, love is not enough. If the person is not money-smart, love is not enough. If the person is an addict, (and who isn't), love is not enough. Sometimes, the best thing to do when you love someone is to walk away and let them find themselves. They just might not be a large enough container for your soul.

Sunday, February 20, 2005

What obsolete skill are you?

It 's comforting to say that 'practice makes perfect'....
You are 'Gregg shorthand'. Originally designed to
enable people to write faster, it is also very
useful for writing things which one does not
want other people to read, inasmuch as almost
no one knows shorthand any more.

You know how important it is to do things
efficiently and on time. You also value your
privacy, and (unlike some people) you do not
pretend to be friends with just everyone; that
would be ridiculous. When you do make friends,
you take them seriously, and faithfully keep
what they confide in you to yourself.
Unfortunately, the work which you do (which is
very important, of course) sometimes keeps you
away from social activities, and you are often
lonely. Your problem is that Gregg shorthand
has been obsolete for a long time.

What obsolete skill are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Wedding Rings

Today, off to Lafayette we went to get our rings made at Ware Designs. Steve is an artist. The first time we spoke, I was impressed with his honesty and his appraisal of engagement rings. When I told him that I was willing to pay for $X amount for an engagement ring, he said that the price was too much. He could make me an engagement ring, a wedding ring and earrings and necklaces for that price.

Today, we saw the platinum comfort rings we asked for. Two weeks ago, we requested that and another set of ring in which the platinum had an edge of gold. I did not particularly like the look of the other set. I thought that the comfort ring was designed so that it would not be a painful burden to wear the wedding band through the years.

When it is meant to be, it is meant to be. Steve informed us that the other company only made the ring when it was ordered and paid for. Bwahahahah. Figures. However, Steve was nice enough to tell us that he could modify the comfort rings just like we wanted to.

When he calculated the price for both rings and he gave me the price, I almost fell on the floor. I was shocked. I could not move and I passed the piece of paper to the SO. She just nodded. I should not have been surprised because Steve did warn me that it was expensive. After the going to the store, I could not stop thinking about the price. It disturbed me.

However, after speaking with the SO and looking at where I am in my life, I realize that it is okay. God will provide for us. I keep thinking that there is only one, me. But I have to realize that there is now a team. US. It is hard to stop thinking in a way of poverty.

Joel Osteen's book says that I should really give myself in the grace of God. He will provide. He will guide. And you know what? He does. Just as we were eating at Bo's BBQ in Lafayette, I realize that I still have to do my taxes. Refund city, here I come!!!

So, as I take steps in the process of one becoming two, I change my perceptions from poverty to prosperity. I need to keep things that remind me of prosperity. These wedding rings will be one of those.
Breaking down the metaphysical

Last night, I picked up the SO from a woman's Kali class. Tuhan was teaching on his philosophy. What amazed me is how Tuhan has integrated biology into feng shui into martial arts into life. Truly, the secrets of the universe are knowable. The answers are there. One does not need initiation. One simply needs to pay attention.

What intrigued me the most is that while my teacher spoke abou truth, I realized that truth had many different faces. In the search for truth, the ancient philosophers looked at their situation of being born, killing to feed, procreating and dying as a basic to life. The ancient philosophers did not believe that this was it. The point of human existence can not be just this. Thus was created philosophy to understand the purpose of man and woman.

Tuhan on the other hand deconstructed last night so many thousand years of philosophy into his truth: We are born. We kill to eat. We procreate. We die.

In the end, man came back to the original observation.
Plouf on 05FEB05

Plouf: The sound a stone makes when it drops into a French stream.

Plouf: The trendy French seafood bistro on lively Belden Alley in the Financial District. Specializing in mussels, unique appetizers, salads, seafood dishes, and grilled meats, we invite you to join us for a truly Parisian dining experience.

After the poetry reading, we were hungry. Though we had some food at Polopo's, it was just appetizer. In fact, while sitting at Polopo's, I noticed the lights strung up on the top of an alleyway across the street from Polopo. It was like a decoration for a Pilipino town fiesta. It drew me in slowly. I nibbled at the flat bread, look around and inevitably, I was drawn back to the alleyway. I told the SO that we had to check out the alleyway.

So, we enter the place at something like 10 o'clock. It was how I imagined a European city would look like. A row of restaurants with outside seating highlighted by twinkling stars. Well, you know the thing about shiny stuff and monkeys. I was amused. I wanted to eat at all of them. I wanted to plop myself down at the very first table where a cute greeter was waiting. In fact, I believe that's how the first restaurant grabbed diners. The cute greeter would greet the man and the man would be awed by the shiny teeth and the smile and the twinkling eyes. Next thing you know, you are eating pasta next to five smokers.

Thank God the SO knows my aversion of smokers. She led me down past three other restaurants to the middle step-child of the alleyway. Not too many people dined here. But unlike the other restaurants, it was a FRENCH restaurant called Plouf. We sat down in the middle of the alley where the bumps crescendoed to a stop. Nice comfortable chairs. Steady table though a bit light. I could imagine my food spilling with a slight mistake.

We obtain the menus and there is a column of appetizers with just condiments. The SO is confused. These are appetizers? It turns out that they were all clam dishes served in different ways. I believe the SO chooses butter and garlic. I was after a more substantial fair. Give me the mackerel.

And folks, let me tell you. The secret to French cooking is butter, garlic and salt. The food was fantastic. Great Maker, it was good. However, the mackerel was was salty! The clams were just basking happily in some soup liquored up with butter. I think rubber marinated with salt and butter would taste good. After the meal, I decided that France was just another province of the Philippines because they ate clams and snails! Great. I am finding all the lost provinces of the Philippines.

Oh, I almost forgot about the dessert. The So picked the sampler. SIX types of dessert in one tray. The people next to us thought that we were barbarians because we ate so much for two people. There were four in their group and they got half the food we had. There was flan, some type of cake, and some more flan. Yup, the stuff was delicious but I did not have my camera. That's one thing about European dishes. They have presentation. Pin@ys just drop the food on the plates.
In Search of mr. pogi

You become Pin@y blog of the day and then you delete your blog? What the H*LL? Listen, you need to be able to withstand all the popularity that this world gives you. Believe that you have the grace of God / Universe and no one can touch you. But of course, if you blaspheme so much in the Philippines, all the aswangs might try to get you.

Get your damned blog out. Get the angas out. Get another moniker. Get another alias. Hide if you have to. But write something. You need it. Otherwise, some young one thirty years from now will be blaspheming a pretend-writer instead of blaspheming you.

The new overturns the old. This is the way of things. I respect this.
"Michael Corleone in Godfather III"
Are you a Pin@y writer?

The Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) Literary Arts Division is accepting contributions to ANI 32.

The theme of the volume to be released in 2006 is “The Global Pinoy”. It will contain poems, short stories and familiar essays on contemporary Filipinos as they, wherever they may be, are affected by world events, international goings-on or global phenomena.

Works must be in Filipino, English or any Philippine language with a translation or gist in Filipino or English. They must be encoded in Arial 12 points for 8 1/2” x 11” paper, double-spaced for works in prose and single-spaced for poems. They must also be accompanied with a 3-4-sentence biographical note on the author, including contact numbers and a TIN for payment purposes. Deadline for submission is September 30.

Manuscripts may be sent to The Editor, ANI 32 through any of the following addresses: (by e-mail) or; (hard copy with a diskette) Literary Arts Division, 4/F Tanghalang Pambansa, CCP Complex, Roxas Boulevard, 1300 Pasay City.

For more information, CCP Literary Arts Division may be contacted through telephone number 832-1125 locals 1706, 1707.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Prosperity Party Prep

One week ago, the preparations were in high gear for the prosperity party. The SO was going to cook leche flan. For those who are veterans of leche flan preparation, this task is not something trivial. Boiling sugar, Boiling water, Hot ovens. The chances for pain and suffering in the physical realm are very real indeed.

I expected that the SO will make one containers worth of flan. Not a problem. Maybe two, maximum. I'm happily lazing along when she calls for help. I look and see that she has a whole large bowl of leche flan mixture. My heart starts calling 911 for help. I can't eat all that flan!

Anyways, apparently, she was going to cook the flan on top of a wok. Nope, that is not going to work because the electric wok was heating unevenly the water. The result was bubbles which unsettled the container of flan. Need to go to the classic way of doing flan which involves the oven, water and container.

Problem. The SO did not plan on doing it that way. I had to come in to the rescue by finding a container that is large enough to hold pyrex bowls. Hmm, where oh where? Ah, I finally found a nice cookie baking sheet that could hold some water. This is how I saw my mother cook leche flan. The system to cook flan worked, but she ended up waiting till 1 AM to finish everything.

Also, I was stupid enough to think that the SO did not turn the oven on. I stuck my hand into the oven. I now know what 400 degrees C of steam feels like. Luckily, it was a first degree. I was howling with pain. I had to stick the hand under the cold water faucet to do anything else. I learned another lesson. Don't be too arrogant because you found a cookie sheet to use in steaming leche flan.
Prosperity Party Prep

One week ago, the preparations were in high gear for the prosperity party. The SO was going to cook leche flan. For those who are veterans of leche flan preparation, this task is not something trivial. Boiling sugar, Boiling water, Hot ovens. The chances for pain and suffering in the physical realm are very real indeed.

I expected that the SO will make one containers worth of flan. Not a problem. Maybe two, maximum. I'm happily lazing along when she calls for help. I look and see that she has a whole large bowl of leche flan mixture. My heart starts calling 911 for help. I can't eat all that flan!

Anyways, apparently, she was going to cook the flan on top of a wok. Nope, that is not going to work because the electric wok was heating unevenly the water. The result was bubbles which unsettled the container of flan. Need to go to the classic way of doing flan which involves the oven, water and container.

Problem. The SO did not plan on doing it that way. I had to come in to the rescue by finding a container that is large enough to hold pyrex bowls. Hmm, where oh where? Ah, I finally found a nice cookie baking sheet that could hold some water. This is how I saw my mother cook leche flan. The system to cook flan worked, but she ended up waiting till 1 AM to finish everything.

Also, I was stupid enough to think that the SO did not turn the oven on. I stuck my hand into the oven. I now know what 400 degrees C of steam feels like. Luckily, it was a first degree. I was howling with pain. I had to stick the hand under the cold water faucet to do anything else. I learned another lesson. Don't be too arrogant because you found a cookie sheet to use in steaming leche flan.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Living and Loving

The beauty of life is that mysteries abound. Sometimes, the mystery is right there where you are sitting. It's you! You are the mystery. How you handle life's little surprises and little curves is a great mystery. From a bunch of molecules to neurons to the brain, it is a great mystery how you handle death, happiness, loss and pain.

Rundmb writes about his time of loss. He poses the question: Does the pain ever go away? He answers that for him, it does not even though it has been nine years.

Nine years is a long time. My mother passed away about seven years ago. It was very painful for the first couple of years. It was such pain that it looked like a blackness that could engulf your soul. At the risk of losing myself to the pain, I realized that I had to create a philosophical framework to rescue myself from drowning.

What I created is as follows. It is for those of you who are in pain. Maybe it will help you ease the pain. I decided that so long as you keep people who have passed away in thought and in your heart, they never really are far away from you. Sure, the physical body has gone. But the world is full of mysteries in which matter beyond physics might be containing the essence of those who have passed.

I subscribe to my teacher's story. When someone dies, they have set you free to be who you are and who you can be. Rundmb is a great example of this. Go read his blog and bring Kleenex.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Wine Tasting

From the SO's blog, you already know that we went wine tasting. I always wondered why Eileen and her husband Tom only took us to one winery. After hitting nine wineries, I now know why. Badly made wine. Nasty phenolic wine. Wine that tastes like water. Wine that made me cringe. Wine that made me disgusted. Yup, yup. Eileen and her husband were just showing us the cream of the cream.

At any rate, we were in amador valley which produces wine from Viognier, Zinfandel, Sangiovese, Muerverde, and others. The trip was worth it because it exposed me these other varietals. I am usually more of a Cabernet Sauvignon type. I like the strong flavors which slap your tongue. I want to wake up. I want bold fruit, snappy comebacks and explosions in my mouth. None of this white wine for me. In general, white wine tastes like water.

The first time I heard of Viognier, it came from Chatty's Blog. I thought that she was making up the varietal just to keep her 6 billion (and counting) voyeurs honest. What is it about France and words that are difficult to pronounce? It worries me for the SO and I are planning a trip into the land of twisted tongues and sunken cheeks. VEE-UGH-NEE-YER is how I would have pronounced it. Just like Tagalog. How you pronounce the word is how you spell it. Instead, I must twist and turn my tongue into a priest's jewel.

Back to Viognier, the varietal that only drunks can pronounce. Didn't like it. Big thumbs down on all of the wines produced from this varietal in Amador Valley. No body. No smell. No taste. No structure. The Chatty must be consuming Viognier from some very good wineries. Only great winde makers can make something out of this varietal.

The other varietals like Sangiovese, Zinfandel and Muerverde were also huge, huge disappointments. One location's Muerverde had "cassiss" as a flavor. Now, the dictionary says it is a type of spice that is close to blackberry. As I tasted it, it was phenolic. Nasty, nasty, nasty. Think of cough drops that soother a sore throat. Remember that numbing feeling which was bliss? It was caused by phenolic substances which inhibit some nerve endings. YUCK!

The definite recommendation is Dobra Zmelja which means "Good Earth." The winemaker knows his wine chemistry. Flavors linger. Good structure. Good legs. Excellent zinfandels.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Gung Hay Fat Choy

Happy New Year to everyone! It's the year of the rooster. I am looking forward to the future. With focus and faith, the future will be bright and fun. Happy New Year!!!
Angas ng Kurimaw

Anyone, and I mean anyone who has managed to offend as many people as he professes will become the Pin@y Blog of the Day for the 10th of February, the year of TatangREtong 2005. Check out mr. pogi and his alter ego. He blasphemes everyone i would blaspheme, and he even adds some who I figure would be holy. So if you want to stretch your imagination, or maybe you want to reconsider life, go read his stuff. It blows him away.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

What gun am I

I really wish they had a rifles. Instead, I am forced to be:

You are old school. Fat Sheriff Deputies fancy you. Reliable but not too practical.
Smith & Wessen .44 Magnum. You are old school. Fat
Sheriff Deputies fancy you. Reliable but not
too practical.

What handgun are you?
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Superbowl Sunday

It's the thirty-ninth Superbowl if you can believe it. It's the third quarter and time slowly passes by. During today's pregame ritual, there were references to Janette Jackson's nipple bare last year. I swear, Americans are such prudes. So hypocritical when it comes to morality or the apparent lack of it.

Americans would never complain about the implied sexuality in ads for alcohol, cars and god only knows what else. But see a nipple say hello to the world and it's a fucking end of the world scenario. Call in the FCC, ye christian fundamentalists. Time to start packing the Supreme Court with 60 year old white men whose idea of sex is going to a hooker in the middle of the night.

And we wonder why there are so much perversions and amoral criminals out there. Maybe we don't teach them how to deal with sexuality at all? Maybe because they repress every impulse that they have developed over thirty thousand years of evolution? Maybe because it is human nature to copulate and populate the earth?

I can't wait though until that piece of shit singer who ripped the nipple star from Janet Jackson disappears into oblivion and simply becomes an answer to trivia questions. Talentless hack! May you disappear as your courage and honor did in leaving Janet Jackson bare and unprotected in the media and from the politicians.

Seiko SNA 429

Seiko watches have been a constant desire in my life. You could say they serve as milestones of my life. The very first one I ever received from my parents was a simple blue dial 17 jewel watch. It was my first year in high school in the Philippines. Very soon after that year, we went to America. When I went to college, for some reason, I lost the watch. All I can remember is that it was with my collection of coins.

It took me nearly fourteen years before I bought another Seiko watch. Being a poor graduate student, I could afford the forty dollar and the fifty dollar watches. But the plastic bracelets always seemed to break. I remember buying several of them during graduate school.

To mark the end of graduate school, I bought my second Seiko watch. A white dial 17 jewel automatic just like my first watch. While wearing the watch, it ripped every single hair on my left wrist. Good Lord! I should have shaved my wrist instead of enduring the pain over a period of weeks. The second watch was with me during my post-doc years. It served as a nice reminder that I got through graduate school in one skin. Maybe I can do it again in the post-doc.

The advent of cheap cellular phones changed my thinking about watches. I stopped wearing the watch since I began carrying the cell phone. Why carry jewelry when you don't need it? It wasn't my persona anyways. I was a happy go lucky scientist who dressed in jeans and t-shirts. Who needs a high class watch?

In 2004, for some reason, the bug hit me again. For some reason, my obsessive-compulsive self began to desire and lust after Seiko chronographs. It got so bad that one time, I went to downtown San Francisco near Union Square to buy the watch. I looked at the displays. The daughter of the owner sensed an opportunity. She began talking and I pointed to a blue dial stainless steel chronograph. The suggested retail price was $375. She said that it was on sale for that day only. She took off $50. I said that I could not afford that. What I was really doing was thinking about how to get the money from two bank accounts that I had.

When I made a move to leave, she insisted that I should buy the watch. I said that I had to consult my wife. Those were magic words. Realizing that the decision was not on one person alone, she took off another $50. Wow, the price was now $275. I left the store and went to the two banks and withdrew $300. But while I was going back to the store, I got a call from the SO. The short end of the conversation was that I should try to connect my watch with an achievement. I walked the streets of San Francisco for about two hours trying to talk myself into buying the watch. But the obsessiveness had already left me. I ended up redepositing my money.

Fast forward to Thanksgiving weekend of 2004. I was ready to leave my miserable job. But the word on the grapevine was that a bonus was coming up in January 2005. Imagine, the photofinishing business was making so much money that they wanted to share the wealth. Truthfully, the work load was so big that I had a difficult time imagining to stay. The SO suggested that I attach my watch to getting the bonus. I did not want to, but it made sense. how much did I want that chronometer? How much suffering could I go through?

Well, by doing a seminar for a company, I got $200 of Amazon bucks. The seminar was something like ten minutes. When the bonus came, I was off to the races. I could finally buy the watch. But since I waited this long, I searched some more. The SO suggested looking at Amazon for a watch. I did not think that they would have any. Boy was I wrong. I was able to buy a great titanium chronometer for only $90. The amazon bucks helped me out. Now, I have a blue dial chronometer which is better than what I would have gotten six months ago.
Truth Hurts

When I grow up, I want be like the Chatelaine. Go to her entries for 12JAN05 and 13JAN05 and the truth and honesty will smack your face. And if you're into that sort of thing, here are some virtual leather whips. Go out there and whip some of her 5 billion voyeurs hiding beneath the canopy of poetics.

Cut to the chase. Get to the meat of the problem. Say why you are here. I wish politicians, journalists and everyone could learn from the chatelaine. If she were in the Babylon 5 universe, she would have her own disciples and her own church. Hmm, her own church...

Sometimes, my gift of seeing people's lives disturb me greatly. Their possibilities appear to me all at the same time and the images, emotions and their lives are difficult to contend with. Sometimes, there are those whose life is so clear that it serves as a beacon to everyone else. Such is the life of the chatelaine. She forewent the joy of parenting one person (18JAN05 entry to her blog) to become the parent of thousands of poets and artists and creators. The loss of one individual is the gain of thousands. Perhaps this thought might help a bit in the hours when the muse flits by.
A sphere is a square

Sometimes, the laws of physics and the universe does not apply. In the life Butch, you can see this phenomena. Fresh from other parts of the world, watch Butch as he adapts and learns to become an American of Pin@y ancestry in America. From his opinions on immigrants and his loneliness to his perceptions of race relations, this is a blog full of honesty and heartfelt observations. For good or bad, this is one side of god and the universe that everyone must see. Oh, and by the way, he writes in Tagalog. So bring out all your Tagalog to English dictionaries. Kuwadradong Mundo is the Pin@y Blog of the Day for the 6th of February, 2005.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Pizza and Poetry

The fiancee performed last night at Poetry and Pizza. A monthly event holding two guilty pleasures together. On the first Friday of each month, free pizza and the opportunity to hear the bright spots of poetry in the Bay area are offerred to anyone and everyone. It is a fantastic opportunity for everyone to support the arts. The proceeds from a donation goes to a local arts organization.

Driving in San Francisco is not one of my favorite things to do. The one way streets, the narrow streets, the hills that reach out to the sky, and the dumb pedestrians who wait on the streets so that they can shave one second in their travel time just plain drive me nuts. Oh, and let's not even get into the potholes. Manholes is more like it.

At any rate, I got to "Escape from New York" a pizza joint a little early. So I walked up the block to find a place where I could eat. Popolo Restaurant is at 375 Bush St. in the financial district. From the SF Chronicle: " For the past six years Popolo Restaurant has served the Financial District with their fine Italian Mediterranean cuisine. Owned and managed by Ladan and Farhad Jalali, Polopo's offers exquisitely delightful fare for both lunch and dinner. Fine food coupled with classic ambiance and a friendly atmosphere make Popolo a perfect setting for client lunches as well as happy hour cocktails."

I was lucky enough to get there during happy hour and to convince the SO to join me for a brief repast before the evening's performances. I ordered the smoked salmon and a plate of flatbread. The SO had chicken wings. The meal was light and delicious. The flatbread was surprisingly flat. I really should pay attention to details like that. I thought they were coming out with some nice bread that was poofy. My bad. The salmon was just right. The salt was not overwhelming. The chicken wings were fried properly. No red blood here. Just crispy skin with tender meat.

I thought about going back to Popolo later in the evening but those were preempted because right across Popolo, there were some strings of light which caught the So's and my eyes. It looked like a fiesta in the Philippines. it turned out that there were about four or five restaurants in the alley.

As time goes on, I am more and more amazed by the performances of the SO. The poems she read were apt for the circumstances of the day. The poems about the Philippine-American War was quite apt considering the current Iraq War. And of course, the point that the Library Congress called the Philippine-American War the Phillipine Insurrection was a good lesson to teach Americans.

The So's performance of the poem "Angel Island" elicited a great response from the audience. The man sitting next to me enounced a guttural sound at the end of the poem. It was as if to say that no words could come out because of the poem. Just emotions evinced by the most primitive sound of man's heart.

Barbara J. P. Reyes was one of the other four poets that evening. She is about fulfill a journey this coming spring when she is to be MFAed. She read from her book "Gravities of Center" and from some from her manuscript. Barbara's direction in poetry is going towards the creation of mythology, specifically Philippine mythology. The "diwata" has been visiting her off and on for the last few months. Unfortunately, the diwata sometimes does not give as quickly or as easily as other muses. In one of her poems, the SO was collaborating as the bakground agong beater. I was the stand. Imagine five minutes which seemed like an hour. I was standing there holding a bronze agong and I was hoping that I did not faint from all the attention. Bwahahhaha.

Elz Cuya set up the whole affair. From the Youth Speaks website: " Elz Cuya is a San Francisco native, born to immigrant Filipino parents. She graduated from U.C Berkeley with a Bachelor's degree in Mass Communications, then worked in the broadcast industry for nearly 10 years, eight of which spent at the all-news radio station, KCBS. In 2000, Elz founded The Poetry Mission, the Mission District-based literary collective that presents poetry, performance art and music. She joined Youth Speaks in 2003 as co-coordinator for the annual Friendraiser, and the organization couldn't get rid of her since. Elz enjoys Argentine Tango and opera. She is also working on a collection of poems to be published in the Fall of 2005."

Ms. Cuya is at the beginning of her poetry career. As a friend of hers remarked, her poetry has gone from Kraft cheese to provolone. She is planning to publish a book of poetry in late 2005. The poem which intrigued me the most is the one about her father. She wonders why it is that her father always seems to give her money. Is money the great symbol for her father? A symbol of what?

The last performer was Joellene Buccat a freshman at USF. "Joellene is an 18-year old Filipina poetess from Daly City. She works closely with Youth Speaks as a member of their youth advisory board. She is currently working with several other female writers from Youth Speaks on a publication to be released this summer. Joellene studies at the University of San Francisco." Her poem about the city of San Francisco and its inhabitants captured my attention. Good detail and great turn at the end of the poem. Everyone needs to look out for the time when she publishes her book.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Up and Down

Sometimes, I lose track of the fact that life is a series of ups and downs. I have been trying to readjust my perception so that the workplace does not affect how I think. I am trying to surround myself with good things and good charms to that end. My plants are doing well now that I found a place in which the sun can bless them. Chlorophyll!

I have to try and give up ownership of reports and just get people to sign it. It is amazing the amount of time I spend on the darned things, but the folks at the photo place are not too bright.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Which Greek God am I?


?? Which Of The Greek Gods Are You ??
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You are most like Raven. Quiet and usually soft
spoken, you don't like crowds and can be
slightly gothic. You try to repress your
emotions for one reason or another but one of
your most powerful emotions is your anger. Your
temper sometimes gets the best of you and when
that happens those in your way would wish they
weren't. You seem somewhat creepy to others and
you earn a few odd stares but who cares? You
aren't an outdoors person and avoid venturing
outside when you can. You are generally the
smart one and maybe not by trying to, the most
cynical and sarcastic of the bunch which can be
good or bad. You don't like anyone invading
your privacy and you don't seem to be all that
social. But for what it's worth you can be
quite handy in a tough situation. You are drawn
to the darkness or night most of the time. You
appear mysterious and/or potentially dangerous
at times and not everyone trusts you right

Which Teen Titans Character Are You?
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?? Which Alcoholic Drink Are You ??
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In your eyes, people see life... You see yourself
as just an average person! You enjoy life, love
wildlife, but also enjoy time with those who
know you best. You like to get outdoors and let
your mind wander over all of the mysteries god
gave to you. You don't really have a certain
sanctuary because you're so well-rounded, but
you like having fun and adventures, but can
also be found sitting quietly about, reading a
book. You have a pretty good life ahead of you,
never trade it for anything else :)

What Lies Behind Your Eyes? (With Pics, See All Results!)
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