Wednesday, March 28, 2007

second time's a bitch

Federer loses to Canas in Florida.This is RFed's second defeat against Canas in less than a month. The Argentine, ranked 55th in the world, showed the victory was no fluke. "I guess he played well against me both times, and I couldn't put him away unfortunately," the world number one was quoted as saying.

I like Federer a lot but I like him more when he loses.

Photo courtesy of AP

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

happy ending

As a HP fan, I am very pleased to know that the Potter trio will graduate together after all. The threesome finalised their deals to star in the last two screen versions of JK Rowling's bestselling books.

Just last week, rumors about the actress playing Hermione quitting the franchise were all over the internet. I'm sure, Potterites are glad that the rumors turned out to be false. So yeah, we can all heave our sighs of relief now.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

the other senatoriable

Who is a nuisance candidate?, the PCIJ asks. My cousin Lala recently joined the esteemed organisation as a writer/researcher. The said article is her third to date. You can read her previous works here and here. You can also access her personal blog here.

Just when you thought we've finally put the joke that is Eddie Gil into oblivion, comes a much bigger mockery. With Cantal's incredible achievements(?), he should've been president already. But we are not stupid. However, what's puzzling me is the inability of the distinguished(?) men and women of COMELEC to see that Cantal is more fiction than fact. If this absurdity goes on, why don't we give them a dose of their own medicine? I say let us humor them all by running for president in 2010.

Ano, call?

Monday, March 19, 2007

hermione to quit hogwarts

The actress playing Hermione in the Harry Potter movie series has yet to sign a contract committing herself to the last two film installments. Rumor has it that she's quitting. Apparently, she's tired of being known as that girl from Harry Potter.

Poor little thing is clueless. No matter what other roles she tackles, she'll always be known as that girl from Harry Potter. The sad thing about portraying a well-loved character in movies is that unless you're a big moviestar, the character will always be attached to you. It's like a stigma. Anyway, as a fan of the franchise, I hope it's not true. I like her as Hermione. And I can't wait for the Order of the Phoenix to come out.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

i see hooded people

The Da Vinci victim: obsessed art expert took deadly overdose. This headline from today's issue of The Daily Mail left me distressed for a few seconds. I sat in my stool motionless, my eyes transfixed on the paper and my mind was flooded by memories from the night I finished reading Dan Brown's best seller almost three years ago.

I read the book non-stop on my journey from Manila to Sablayan in Occ. Mindoro. To say that the experience was gripping is an understatement. I was at the edge of my seat and it wasn't because of the rough roads of Mindoro. I don't write reviews because I'm just not good at them. No, make that because I can't write, period. My suggestion is for you to read it yourself so you can have an idea what I'm talking about. To sum it all up, the book left my mind racing.

There were too many questions. And the questions, instead of yielding answers, produced more questions. I was raised by pretty religous parents. All my life I went to Catholic schools. I even went to the mother of Catholic schools - the Royal and Pontifical, The Catholic University of the Philippines, University of Santo Tomas - to get my bachelor's degree. Everything that I believed was being challenged. My faith was under attack. Okay, I'm exxagerating. But it sure felt that way. I know it's only fiction. But my God was I shaken! As soon as I reached my parents' house, I went looking for the family's old Last Supper to scrutinise the painting. I also grabbed an encyclopedium and examined the other works of Da Vinci. All these happened before I even kissed my mother's hand; she telling me later on to mind my manners.

Anyway, I couldn't sleep that night. The information that I learned from the book made me feel privy to something dangerous, thus it should be kept a secret. I got really paranoid. Whenever I close my eyes, I saw hooded figures coming at me. I was shit scared! I remembered texting my cousin Lala (she lent me the book) and Sir Vic, telling them about my paranoia. Both of them humored me with their replies. I can't recall how I finally slept. But it was a long and peaceful slumber, I'm sure of that.

I've always known that my imagination is a bit mad. But today I just couldn't stop asking myself, was it really just my imagination?

Thursday, March 15, 2007

how's that for an answer?

Brown Brother: "Hi, I'd like to cancel my phone insurance."
Operator: "Okay. But before I do that, could you please give me your name, post code and the first line of your address."

The Brown Brother obliged.

Operator: "Did you say you wanted to cancel your insurance policy, Mr. _______. May I know why?"
Brown Brother: "I just want to cancel it, that's all."
Operator: "I can see from your information that you only have four months left on your contract. I don't understand why want to cancel it."
Brown Brother: "Like I said, i just want to cancel it."
Operator: "You realise that once you've cancelled your policy and your phone gets stolen or lost; you can't have a new one back. And you still have to pay the monthly tariff. And that if somebody uses your stolen or lost phone to make phone calls, you'll have to pay the bill. You do realise that, don't you?"
Brown Brother: "Yes."
Operator: "Are you saying, you're willing to take that risk?"
Brown Brother: "Yes."
Operator: "Clearly, this is a mistake sir. You're willing to pay, say 10,000 GBP for calls you didn't make, when the policy is only 9.99 GBP per month. Actually, I can get it down to 4.99 GBP for the basic policy. If that's what you want. "
Brown Brother: "No, thanks. I just want to cancel it."
Operator: "It doesn't make any sense. You're making a mistake, sir. Do you know that?"
Brown Brother: (Sighs) "I know that La Paz in Bolivia is the highest capital city in the world. I also know that in 1681 the Dodo became extinct. And that Helen Mirren's real name is Ilyana Mironov. Oh, and I also know how to say asshole in Spanish. Do you still want me to answer your question?"

Long pause.

Operator: "Uhm, right. Did you want you the cancellation for immediate effectivity?"
Brown Brother: "Yes."
Operator: "Do you want the cancellation number?"
Brown Brother: "No, thank you."
Operator: "Is there anything else I can help you with?"
Brown Brother: "That's all for now. Bye."


PS. The Brown Brother takes the MSN Daily Quiz everyday at work.

Monday, March 12, 2007

believe it or not

Roger Federer ousted at Indian Wells tennis. Now that's something you don't read often. This sort of newss will most certainly put a smile on Andy Roddick's face, no doubt. See Andy, Federer is not invincible. You can beat him again, you only have to play better.


Tortang Talong.

Say it out loud. And repeatedly.

If this doesn't make your senses tingle, you got your priorities all wrong. Loosen up a bit. It can't be that bad.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Ang Kapatiran

A lot of Filipinos say that this year's senatorial election is a choice between two evils. I couldn't but disagree more. In case you haven't been looking closely, there is a third force. Ang Kapatiran (or The Alliance of Common Good) promises to be the party that upholds virtue and answers the call of duty. It was founded on the ideology of the common good based on 10 ethical principles:
1. Belief in God
2. Respect for life and human dignity
3. Strengthening of the family
4. Community participation
5. Basic rights and responsibilities
6. Preferential option for the poor and the vulnerable
7. Dignity of work and rights of workers
8. Care for nature as God's creation
9. Peace and active nonviolence
10. Solidarity

To be honest I don't know much about the party. I first heard about them a few weeks ago when news of the Administration and Opposition's scramble for candidates were at its peak. What caught my attention was the fact that their candidates know from the start that it is more likely for them to lose. It seemed to me that they have no grand illusion of winning. They just wanted to make a difference and to let the Filipino know that the coming election is not a choice between two evils. That there is a better alternative!

The party is fielding three candidates. Dr. Noel Bautista, a physician, who after 17 years in the US went home last year. When a significant number of our doctors go back to school to study nursing so they can live the American dream, he packed his bags and uprooted his family from Oklahoma to start a new life in Manila. When he was asked why he never applied for a green card; his reply was that he always knew he'd be coming back to his native land.

Jess Paredes was a director of the presidential commission monitoring the Philippine-US Visiting Forces Agreement. When Cpl. Daniel Smith was transferred to US Embassy custody from the Makati City jail, he resigned in protest. Other government officials staunchly defended the blatant disrespect of Philippine law just to please Uncle Sam. He didn't! Now talk about integrity.

Last and definitely not the least is Adrian Sison. One of the country's top lawyers, Atty. Sison is also a broadcaster and an author. He participated in the drafting of the 1987 constitution and is working for the abolition of death penalty. It is time to clean up our politics and bring hope to our people, he said.

A single vote is all I have. I cannot make them win. I just wanted to make a difference. And at least, I will have the satisfaction knowing that my vote will not go to waste. Because I am supporting those who are good and better.


Please read Conrado de Quiros' column today here.

Also, you can access the blogs of Dr. Baustista and Atty. Sison here and here.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

i walked his way

When I'm excited, I can't keep my mouth shut. If something caught my fancy, I make it known to everyone how much I love it. I rave about it! So it was really an agony not to tell Ketty when sometime in October I decided on what I was going to give her for her birthday last December. Occasionally, I'd drop hints about it, and she would always tell on me. "Ayan ka na naman, di ka mapakali." I'd always reply, how much I can't wait to be in Manila so I can finally give her my present.

My gift was a walking tour of Intramuros by Carlos Celdran. I hate to say this but I probably enjoyed it more than Ketty. Not saying that she didn't enjoy it because she did. It's just that its impact on me was so huge, that I was left bewitched, bothered and bewildered. I've been on a few guided tours before, but this was different. Tour guides normally are just tourist information in flesh, Carlos Celdran is a tour guide in love. Manila seemed like a misunderstood, battered but nevertheless beautiful woman. When he was dishing out facts about the tour, he was telling it with so much passion that it almost felt like he was talking about his lost paramour. There was a sense of longing. Throughout the tour you'll be left laughing, reflecting, heart-broken, and wondering. Sometimes all at the same time.

In honor of the hundred and so thousand Filipinos who died, Carlos chose the San Agustin Church mausoleum to talk about Manila during the Second World War. He couldn't have picked a perfect setting. What I heard was heart-breaking. The new information weren't in our books, much less taught in school. Amidst the countlesss tombs, our group was enveloped by melancholia as we reflect the atrocities of war. The haunting ambiance added to the drama. Candle lights danced while the air carried the smell of wilted flowers. He showed pictures of a devastated city that left us pensive and contemplative. A moment of silence was all we could offer for everything that was lost.

After the tour, I sort of wished that Manila is a person. Somebody I can touch and look in the eye because I want to give her a hug.

Click here for more photos.