Recent Thoughts

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Here freshie, freshie!

(The title should be read the way you would call you cats, "Here kitty, kitty!" Haha! =p)

Two weeks of classes have gone by and like other 1st semester starters, school has been pretty interesting particularly because of the newest members of the campus – the freshies!

I had my first encounter with a freshie on the very first day of class (June 13). As always, I rode an Ikot jeep to my first class. And as I sat down inside the jeepney, there was this young-looking guy seated opposite me, whose attire screamed freshie, freshie, freshie! Haha! His fashion sense was pretty okay and simple – he sure doesn’t seem to come from those science high schools, hehe! He was wearing a rebel-like shirt, a neat pair of pants and a cool pair of rubber shoes. It doesn’t seem so freshie so far, right? I mean, the average UP upperclassman wears the same pieces. It was the long brown envelope inscription: Mabuhay ka! Iskolar ng bayan! It didn’t help that he was holding a small towellete and a binder of mini-notebooks (whose number, by the way, is obviously more than the number of subjects that kid was probably enrolled in for the sem. There was like 10 of them).

On another Ikot ride to class, I was the only passenger. Then suddenly, the driver pulled over because 2 freshies were flagging down his jeep. I was so sure they were freshies because no upperclassman would flag down a jeep just anywhere – we all know there are designated waiting shed for unloading/loading of passengers. When the jeepney stopped, one of the girls asked the driver, “Manong, dadaan po bang gymnasium ito?” Haha! Of course, no upperclassman calls the gym in its non-truncated version and he would surely know that the Ikot indeed passes by the gym. Lastly, the other girl was holding a plastic envelope and inside was the UP Diliman campus map.

(FYI) In UP, student organizations have designated tables and chairs which we call our tambayans. It’s common occurrence during the first week classes when we would see random faces sitting at out tables. Obviously, these kids don’t know that the tables are exclusive for student members. We can't blame them of course, they probably haven't read their survival kits from cover to cover, hehe.

Last year, my morning class ended earlier than usual so I went straight to our AS tambayan to eat breakfast. There was this girl freshie seated on our table writing on a piece of bluebook. I didn’t ask her to leave, of course, I just sat in front of her and minded my own business, hoping she’ll soon realize on her own that she’s in an awkward situation. This year’s freshie tambayan blooper was funnier. Two orgmates of mine arrived at our tambayan with a boy freshie seated in one of our benches. As always, they didn’t ask him to leave. But when it was time for the freshie’s next class, he asked my orgmates if they had a ballpen. Thinking that he was just about to write something in a jiffy, they offered him one. Then the freshie asked, Nandito pa ba kayo ng 10am? Babalik ko na lang mamaya…” Haha! My orgmates were amusingly shocked so they just told him if they aren’t around when he comes back, he can just leave the ballpen in the table. O diba, hindi masyadong handa ang freshie na ito. At ang tapang pa niyang manghiram ng ballpen for 2 hours kung kani-kanino, haha!

Okay, You’re probably thinking I'm a rude, unwelcoming, freshie-bashing senior, haha! I'm just having a laugh at the innocent bloopers of these college newbies because my own freshie memories sort of come back. This is not a post to poke fun at them. This is just a reminder to all upperclassmen like me that for a time, it was us committing our own freshie bloopers.

When I was a freshie, I was trying so hard to dress as cool as I can. Syempre, first time ko hindi mag-uniform sa school. Of course, looking back on my own fashion sense then, I would definitely cringe. I was more conscious of how trendy I would look instead of how comfortable I am. Eventually, I realized that comfort comes first. Mind you, it’s no mean feat to like dress up for a party and walk long distances under the sun in between classes. These days, I prefer to wear any comfort-fit shirt and pants and a pair of sandals.

On my very first day as a college freshman, I was not without bloopers myself. I was in the Math building and I wanted to go to the Registrar (OUR) to obtain an ID-picture-taking appointment. My campus map says I had to walk around a block to get there. I didn’t know there was a shortcut for it wasn't on the map. From the Math Building, I had to walk to ASTEC, then the new NIP (back then, the new NIP building was non-existent) and passed by a few shanties to get to the OUR. For those who can't imagine what I'm saying because you probably haven't been to our campus – in short, I had to walk 3x the distance because I didn’t take the shortcut.

So there, to all freshies (lalu na yung mga Isko/Iska), well, welcome to college! Have fun in your first year. In terms of academic stress year and free time, this is going to be your best year in college! Haha! Make the most out of it! =p

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Entrance Exams Tips + Let's Go UP!

Isa na namang nakalkal na artik sa aking baul, haha! Pang-high school students na naman, galing din sa survival kit ng org namin last year. Obviously, biased ang tips na ito for UP and its UPCAT. Syempre, love your own diba? Kung love mo school mo, edi go post your own artik, hehe! Peace! Anyway, I'm not bashing any other school in this article, so I guess this should be harmless.

Entrance exams: major alalahanin kapag fourth year ka na. Syempre, hindi ka makakapasok sa isang matinong university kung hindi ka magte-take nito. By this time, only a few of your fellow seniors ang nakapili na ng course at college or university. Yung ilang naman, iniisip pa kung dito pa rin sa Pampanga mag-aaral or luluwas ng Maynila or aakyat ng Baguio. At mas marami sa inyo ay ni hindi pa sigurado sa kanilang napiling course. Although majority sa inyo naman ay napilit ng mga magulang na mag-Nursing, diba?

Anyway, hindi naman dapat katakutan ang mga entrance exams. If you think about it, wala naman silang itatanong na hindi mo pa napag-aralan nung high school diba? Problem is, naalala mo pa kaya lahat-lahat ng itinuro sa iyo mula 1st year hanggang 4th year? Haha! Isa pang problema ay kapag pataasan ng scores ang labanan. Kapag kasi marami ang gustong pumasok sa isang university, hindi enough na passing ang score mo. Dapat ay one of the best ka talaga – gaya ng sa UPCAT. Each year, more than 60,000 students from both public and private schools take the UPCAT, umaasang makapag-aral sa premiere state university ng Pilipinas. At dahil around 10,000 lang available slots sa lahat ng UP Campuses nationwide, kailangan na paghandaan mo nang maigi ang UPCAT. For example, alam niyo ba na sa mahigit na 14,000 applicants for BS Nursing sa UP Manila, 70 lang tatanggapin?

Most common preparation for an entrance exam are review classes like UP Aguman’s College Entrance Exam Review (CEER). I'm sure yung iba sa mga classmates mo ay nag-review lessons na nung summer pa. Hindi mo nga naman kasi ma-re-review sa isa or dalawang araw at gabi ang more than 3 years worth of lessons. Reviews are always a great help but they’re not guarantees.

Don’t expect that doing some studying the night before your exam will do you any good. The probability na lilitaw ang mga mismong ire-review mo ay napakaliit. Mas maganda na matulog ka na lang nang maaga or huwag kang mag-puyat para maganda ang feeling mo when you take your exam. Research studies have proven that when you feel okay during an exam, your mind will perform better and you’ll actually improve your chances of remembering and analyzing things properly.

Ang pinaka-effective na paraan to get flying colors sa iyong entrance exam ay dapat na sinimulan mo na 3 years ago pa: ang mag-aral nang mabuti mula 1st year pa. Aside from the fact that some entrance exams like the UPCAT take into consideration your high school grades together with your test scores, ang pag-aaral nang mabuti ay ang iyong ultimate review. A dependable stock-knowledge is a big contributing factor to ace your entrance exams. There’s a saying that only the real geniuses get into UP, not the bookish ones who know nothing more than what is in your textbooks. The inside joke is that while only the geniuses enter UP, ang mga masisipag naman ang nakaka-survive at guma-graduate on time.

If you’re not the honor student type, don’t fret na wala ka nang pag-asang pumasa sa UPCAT or sa mga ibang admission tests. Meron akong personal testimony dito. Out of the 15 who passed the UPCAT in our 180-strong batch, only 5 are medalists during our graduation. At eto pa, 3 sa kanila ay iyung tipo na hindi mo iisipin na may tinatagong talino, iyung paloko-loko lang. at huwag ka, ECE pa ang course nung isa while not even the 1st Honorable Mention awardee made it, kahit non-quota pa ang course niya.

Just so you know, UP Colleges don’t sort their applicants entirely based on the applicants’ overall UPG (University Predicted Grade – which is a weighted score of your high school grades and UPCAT results). Your UPG is divided into different subgrades – the different subjects included in the coverage of the UPCAT. Certain colleges sort their applicants according to subgrades more crucial to their academic fields. For example, Engineering students are preferred to be good in Math, so all engineering courses sort their applicants according to their Math UPG. Simply put, kung importante ang Math (or other subject areas) sa course mo, yun ang may mas mabigat na bearing sa final score mo. Syempre, sa mga medicine-related courses, mas importante ang medical sciences grades and scores like Biology and/or Chemistry UPGs. Sa mga social sciences and arts-related courses, mas importante naman ang English UPGs. And so on and so forth.

Lastly, hindi mawawala ang factor ng luck. Kaya samahan mo na rin ng taimtim na dasal kay Lord ang iyong exam preparations. If it’s meant to be, it will happen. Kung hindi ka man pumasa ng UPCAT, don’t worry. May kinabukasan pang naghihintay sa iyo. Mag-aral ka na lang muna nang mabuti sa ibang university at transfer ka na lang sa UP after 1 year. Hehe!

When I was in 4th Year HS, I only took 3 entrance exam tests: UPCAT, ACET and the UST exam (damn, I don't know what they call UST's entrance exams, hehe, sowee.. =p). I took the UPCAT at UPEPP at Angeles City, the ACET at the Holy Angel University and the UST exam, well, at UST.

For the record, (pero hindi ako nagmamayabang, ok), hindi ako nag-attend ng review classes except for the UP Aguman's CEER during my time (but only because 90% of the batch is attending, hehe). I did not review at all for the UPCAT and ACET -- I didn't have any of those MSA reviewers. Because I didn't take them seriously at that time. I only bought a reviewer for the UST exam because I really wanted to study there. Luckily, I passed all 3 entrance exams, under my respective 1st choice courses (Computer Engineering at UPD, Computer Engineering with Physics at ADMU, and Information Technology at UST). I also applied for a scholarship sa Ateneo, pero hindi ko nakuha yung scholarship. Pinaka-nahirapan ako sa ACET. Easiest for me was the UST exam.

Gusto ko sa UST kasi doon ang gusto ng mga barkada ko, hehe. I didn't have any idea that UP was the prestigious university. So when I was one of the few who passed from our school, casual ko lang na tinanggap ang balita, parang wala lang sa akin. Sa isip ko, so CoE pala ako sa UP, oh well, natural lang naman iyon, dahil iyon ang inapplyan ko.. I didn't know I won a slot versus 50,000+ other hopefuls, hehe. Tinawag pa tuloy ako na mayabang. Haha!

When my father learned I preferred UST over UP, sabi niya, "Kung hindi ka mag-UP, huwag ka nang mag-aral! Hindi mo ba alam kung gaano karami ang gustong mag-UP?!" O diba, may ganon?! Being the good son I was, I relented. In the end, nakasama ko rin sa UP yung isa kong kabarkada na nakapasa din sa UP. So ok lang!

And now, after 5 years in UP Diliman, well, eto lang masasabi ko:

U-nibersidad ng Pilipinas (8x)
Matatapang, matatalino
Walang takot, kahit kanino
Hinding-hindi magpapahuli
Ganyan kaming mga taga-UP!
U-nibersidad ng Pilipinas (8x)

Yak, ang yabang ko, parang kailan lang eh muntik na ako masipa sa UP, haha! ^_^
Haha! Excited na ako sa Cheering Competition! =p

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Senior ka na, ikaw na ang boss! Haha!

Eto, nakalkal ko na naman sa mga files ko. I wrote this article for my org’s survival kit supplement sa aming CEER for Kapampangan High School seniors a year ago. Napansin ko kasi na madami sa inyo eh mga high school students pa, so I thought this could help, kahit papaano. Hehe, sana! =p

Sa wakas! Senior year na! Surely, you were so looking forward to this school year. Bakit naman hindi diba? Kahit sumingit ka sa pila sa canteen, walang mag-rereklamo. At kahit pinakahuli kang dumating sa service, sa may pinto ka pa rin makakaupo. Kung ikaw pa ang pinakasiga, sa may harapan ka pa laging nakapuwesto. You get the prime roles during co-curricular activities. Mas malamang kesa hindi, ikaw pa ang Champion sa Intrams. At sa gabi ng prom, ikaw ang pinaka-maganda / gwapo. In short, ikaw ang bida at boss ng campus.

But, like Uncle Ben said, ‘with great power comes great responsibility’. With more and better perks, comes more and harder requirements and duties. Not to mention greater expectations. Andyan ang mas pinahirap na algebra at trigo; makikilala mo na si Engels, Smith at Marx; magiging idol mo si Newton; not to mention ang iyong sort-of thesis, atbp. Kamusta ka naman diba? Idagdag mo pa ang mga iba’t ibang entrance examinations at career orientation. You are practically driving into a rotunda of your life. Whichever avenue you turn to (ie, the course and school you’ll choose) will practically define the rest of your life. Kaya naman, there should be no room for mistakes. No pressure, right?

Your last year in high school is definitely a turning point in your life. It should be the best year of your high school life. Nasa iyo na yan if you’ll make the most and best out of it. If there’s a year where you can be yourself with the least inhibitions, it should be your senior year. Without breaking the school rules naman ha. Don’t make too many enemies din. If you want to change for the better, start now. Keep in mind that your reputation until you graduate to your peers will stick until you start your own families. Unless, of course, if you’re the type who’d still see each other in college and thereafter. Come to think of it, when batchmates whom you never talked to come across your yearbook and see your page, they’ll will think: ‘ah eto yung school snub nung high school!’ I'm sure you’d prefer ‘eto yung laging naka-smile at very friendly’ diba?

Siguro di ka na rin makahintay to get out of high school. You can't wait to get out of the clutches of your principal’s rules. You can't wait for college where you’ll have more freedom. Pero, the thought of you and your barkada going to different schools probably makes you anxious. You’ve been with them all these years of growing up from being kids to being adolescents tapos ngayon ay magkakahiwalay na kayo. Oh well, talagang ganyan. Kahit naman sino na-feel ang nafi-feel mo ngayon.

At the end of the day, eto lang ang ma-aadvise namin sa iyo: enjoy your senior year or should I say the rest of your high school life. What they say is true: that you won't feel the importance of something until you lose it. Feeling mo, ang 8 months to your March graduation is too long for a wait. Subalit ngunit datapwat, pustahan tayo, come January, kung hindi lang importante ang magkaroon ng high school diploma, you wouldn’t want to get out of high school. By this time, you’re having the time of your life. Feel na feel mo na ang pagiging Senior. More so, while you still can get a perfect score sa quizzes kahit nung lunch break ka lang nagbasa ng El Filibusterismo, seize the chance! Dahil malay mo, pagdating ng college, kahit mag-sunog ka pa ng kilay, babagsak ka pa rin. While you still always have the weekends for gimiks, treasure all those free time. When you’re in college, free time to just rest is already in itself a valuable treasure. Siguro ngayon, halos i-fast forward mo ang oras para makatuntong ka na sa college. Easy ka lang. Dahil believe me, kapag nasa college ka na, the freedom you were yearning for will make you wish that you were back in high school, where you have nice teachers to tell you what to do.

Di mo ba napansin na your teachers are always telling you to learn to be more independent as preparation for college? Kesyo you’ll experience the ‘real world’ daw when you’re in college. It’s absolutely true, except for the fact that the ‘real world’ is always the next level. Sa college naman, the ‘real world’ is the professional world, where you’ll have to earn a living for yourself. In short, kanya-kanyang oras lang iyan. Lahat ng ito ay kailangan pagdaanan, dahil lahat ng experiences natin sa bawat stage ay magagamit natin sa susunod na level. Magsaya ka habang nasa high school ka. Pero syempre, don’t neglect your studies dahil may effect ang grades sa magiging course at university mo. Don’t worry, pasasaan at ga-graduate at magiging college student ka rin. For now, enjoy bullying the lower years, haha!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Tagged!... Again

Been tagged by Charlene! So now I have to share 6 weird things about me. Actually, matagal ko nang nababasa sa mga blogs tong chain na to eh, nagtataka nga ako bakit ngayon lang ako na-tag, haha! =p

1. I'm a geography freak. I actually find fulfillment in memorizing world capitals and knowing the right pronunciation of cities and countries. Haha! When I was a child, the volumes of letter F, W and U are always missing in the cabinet of our 1975 World Book Encyclopedia set – F as in flags, W for world and U for United Nations. One summer dahil wala akong magawa, I read the articles of each country in the encyclopedia volumes in alphabetical order, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. Grabe, it’s actually my idea of fun, haha! Plus, it actually amazes me when I look at maps. Ewan ko, I'm able to imagine things more than what the map shows, hehe.

2. I maintain an Excel file of my expenses. I always get the bewildered and amused look when friends see me accounting my daily expenses on my laptop. As in ultimo pinang-paphotocopy ko na worth P1.25 ay nakalista. In my ‘book’ (that’s what they call tables of expenses in accounting, diba?) is divided into weekly expenses, weekly savings, monthly savings and others. Why do I do it? Para alam ko kung kailang ko na bang mag-skip ng lunch dahil kailangan ko nang magtipid dahil malapit nang maubos ang pera ko for the week, haha! I get my allowance on a monthly basis eh, so I have to check how much I spend the practically all the time, if I don’t want to run out of money before the next remittance from my parents.

3. I have the gift for making people tell. Haha! Kaya ang tawag sa akin ­­– Chismis King, hehe! It’s not like I approach people and say, “hoy, ano na ba ang latest!”. More often than not, people approach me themselves to share sensitive stuff. A lot of times, I'm not even involved in the issue. Minsan naman, kung may gusto talaga ako malaman, madalas napipilit ko yung tao, hehe. I'm not aware of this curse/gift until a friend pointed it out when I asked if it’s my fault that I know a lot of stuff about a lot of people (kasi kung minsan, hindi ko naman ginusto na malaman ang ilang mga bagay). She said that I have this aura that one can tell me anything. Parang nang-hihypnotize daw ako na ‘come on, tell me!’ Haha!

4. I remember people’s clothes. Matandain akong tao, though minsan ay mga useless information lang naman tulad ng kung anong suot ng isang tao sa isang okasyon. Haha! Usually, on significant occasions or events, natatandaan ko kung anong suot ng mga friends ko. But I'm not the type who intentionally memorizes the wardrobe of the people around me. Ewan ko ba, basta unconsciously, I am able to recall what people wear. Kahit sa sarili kong damit, marami akong naaalalang pangyayari. For example, I still know the shirt, pants and shoes I was wearing when I was dumped by ****. That’s why whenever I wear that shirt, I feel the sort of negative nostalgia about the shirt. Hehe. =p

5. Hindi ako nagpapatis or nagtotoyo. Hindi naman sa maarte ako or what ha. Pero sa mga ulam na usually patis or toyo ang perfect na ka-partner, iodized salt ang gamit ko. Haha! Allergic kasi ako sa patis, nag-dadry at nangangati ang lips ko. Hindi naman ako allergic sa toyo, pero hindi ko lang talaga nakagisnan na gumamit nito. Sobrang rare lang ako mag-toyo – kapag ang ulam ay inihaw na bangus. Napipilitan din ako mag-toyo kung walang barbecue sauce at barbecue ang ulam. And another thing, I prefer Worcestershire sauce than soy sauce. O diba, sersyal! Haha!

6. I watch movies alone. Alam kong nasa About Me sa left sidebar ko na ito, so eexplain ko na lang. So yun nga, I am able to watch movies alone. Hindi ako yung tipo ng tao na malulungkot manood ng sine na mag-isa. Minsan nga, mas okay yun eh. Basta may pera ako and I feel this sudden urge to watch a certain movie, manonood ako kahit wala akong mayaya na kasama.

Like previous tags, hindi na rin ako mag-tatag nang kung sinu-sino. Comment kayo ha! Gusto ko madaming-madaming comments, haha!
Kahit weird comments! =p

Sunday, June 18, 2006

My Personal Idol =p

It’s your daddy’s turn to receive his yearly honors today! Hehe! Since I featured a song for my Mother’s Day post for Mama, I figured I should do the same for Papa. I would use Dance With My Father Again since I love the song anyway. Pero napag-isip-isip ko, buhay pa ang ama ko, hehe. So I've decided to just skip the chorus. Hehe.. =p

Back when I was a child
Before life removed all the innocence
My father would lift me high
And dance with my mother and me and then

Pa, I did some Math and I realized that we've only been physically together for only about 2 years and 11 months. That’s roughly about only 10% of my life. Geesh, that sucks, huh? We must admit, you weren’t there during the important milestones in my life. In fact, I barely have any childhood memories with you. Pero oops, bago mo isipin na ito ay isang sulat nang panunumbat, I want you to know that I will never ever hold it against you for being away most of our lives. NEVER. =) It’s because you chose a better life for all of us. At iyon ang isang bagay na habambuhay kong tatanawin ng utang na loob sa iyo. =p That’s why I love movies like Anak and Dubai. I release litres of tears when I watch them, hehe. Because I remember you. I remember your great sacrifices. I remember your own brand of heroism. I remember your love.

Have I ever told you that you’re actually my idol? Oh so ngayon, nasabi ko na, hehe. You’re good at almost anything! The only thing that I can beat you at yata is English, hehe. I was never the jack-of-all-trades that you are. I actually suck at the things you most excelled at – electronic and mechanical stuff. Well, syempre, naturally, given the age gap, I'm better with computers. Haha!

One of the things I managed to inherit from you is your principled demeanor. You are one of the most passionate people I know when it comes to their beliefs. You're a good person Dad, you really are. And that’s what I love the most about you and Mama. It’s what I always try to emulate from you. I turned up the way I am because of the way you brought me up. You’re like my own version of Jonathan Kent.

Spin me around till I fell asleep
Then up the stairs he would carry me
And I knew for sure
I was loved

Sometimes, I wonder how you do it – to be our father, 7300 km away. Mahirap yun ah. Yun iba nga, kahit kasama na nila mga anak nila, nahihirapan pa, iyun pa kayang tulad mo na malayo. You do it so well, it actually scares me if I’d be able to do the same when I'm a daddy myself. You're the pillar of our family. Without you, the whole structure would crumble.

When I and my mother would disagree
To get my way I would run from her to him
He’d make me laugh just to comfort me, yeah, yeah
Then finally make me do just what my mama said

Anyway, on a lighter note, why do fathers tend to be the spoilers? Hehe, wala lang. I just remember the times whenever I ask things from you. You almost always give them eh. Pero syempre, laging andun yung linya mo na, “Sige, sabihin mo sa nanay mo..” Haha! Kasi nakay Mama yung pera, hehe. One of the best suprises you ever gave me was the very laptop from which I'm typing this piece from. I could still remember that night very clearly. It was during your regular overseas calls to check up on me when I sweet-talked to you for a laptop. Ginawa ko yun nang hindi nag-eexpect. Sabi mo pa nga, “Sige, titingnan ko this week, kung kasya sa budget.” I actually forgot about my laptop request after the call. Imagine my utmost surprise when you call 4 hours later telling me you just bought me my laptop! I was like, “HUWAT?!” Haha! Not counting the fact that this laptop is the most expensive single material you gave me, the surprise that accompanied it was indeed one of the sweetest. Wala lang, alam ko kasi na hindi ka naman namumulot ng pera diyan sa Bahrain, kaya nagulat talaga ako na walang anu-ano’y bumili ka kaagad. Ni hindi mo man lang tinanong ang mga gusto kong specs! Haha! But in fairness, even if you weren’t that much of a computer literate, astig ang nabili mo sa para akin!

So, like my message to Mama a month ago, I would like to say sorry for being such a disappointment just recently. For the many times I cried during my sorry state, most of it I cried not because I was pathetic and helpless, but because I disappointed YOU. If you only knew, how bothered I was when I got the long overseas sermon from you. Madalang mo lang kasi akong kagalitan, and when you do, I know it’s one of those times when I really did something wrong. But despite that, I deeply appreciate the unwaivering support you had for me. Astig nga eh, one moment, you were so disappiontingly mad, the next moment you sounded so sympathetically supportive. Haha! Thank you so much for not giving up on me.

You seldom offer me advice on anything, given our physical set-up. Mama would always be your representative. But on the rare times you do, your wisdom is so priceless. At least I know where I got my I-know-the-right-things-to-say genes.

I know we were never given a chance to celebrate Father’s Day together. But heck, we know that distance has never been an issue in our family. Hehe! We manage to send our love all the way to and from the ricefields of Pampanga and the sand dunes of Bahrain. Happy Father’s Day, Orland Manalo Dizon! =p Actually ito lang naman point ng post ko. Pinahaba ko lang na naman. Hehe.. =p

Saturday, June 17, 2006

A Fresh New Start

Whew! The first half of the 2006 is already nearing its end. And Looking back at the events of the past 6 months, I can safely say that it’s the worst 6 months of my life. It’s practically my own life’s version of the Dark Ages! Haha! But the past week, I feel like my own Renaissance had started ushering in.

There's some things that I regret
Some words I wish had gone unsaid
Some starts that had some bitter endings
Been some bad times I've been through
Damage I cannot undo
Some things I wish I could do all all over again

Whoever wrote this song for Carrie Underwood, must've known what I've been through the past 6 months! Haha! There’s no better way of saying what I went through – the regrets, the bitter endings, the bad times, the damage WE cannot undo and even the things I wish I could do all all over again! Haha! Perfect!

But it don't really matter
Life gets that much harder
It makes you that much stronger

I must admit, 6 months worth of problems, betrayals, pain, failures, disappointments and rejections took its toll on me. Nangyari na to last year eh, (but on a lesser degree), naulit lang at mas tumindi pa. The first time things in my life got outrageously out of control, I still managed to weather the storm because I could still see the disguised goodness in the tragedies. But this time around, I was completely clueless. Iyong mga bagay na akala ko ay pinanghahawakan ko, well, wala na pala sila sa akin. Yeah, you could say that I was a fool in thinking I still had the things I thought I had.

There's mistakes that I have made
Some chances I just threw away
Some roads I never should've taken
Been some signs I didn't see
Hearts that I hurt needlessly
Some wounds that I wish I could have one more chance to mend
But it don't make no difference
The past can't be rewritten
You get the life you're given

I had to learn major lessons the hard way – twice. I guess He realized that I didn’t learn the first time so He had to teach me harder the second time around. So I asked for a chance to correct my many mistakes. He gave it at the last minute. I guess He just wanted me to pray hard enough for it. Haha! Kung anu-ano pa tuloy pinromise ko na gawin! Don’t worry Lord, I will stick to my end of the bargain. =p

And all the things that break you
All the things that make you strong
You can't change the past cause it's gone,
And you just gotta move on
Because it's all lessons learned.

So now, in line with the new school year (and hopefully me last), I feel like it a whole new lease not only in my academic life but in my whole life in general! Siguro, ganun talaga kapag naramdaman mo na malaki ang nawala sa iyo tapos bigla kang binigyan ng pagkakataon na makuha mo itong muli. Para akong Keanna Reeves – I feel like I've been reborn!

Anyway, this post might not mean anything to you, especially if you have no idea what exactly I've been through. Basta, convince yourselves that when I say ‘it was the worst 6 months of my life’, it was indeed so. I just wanted to share how happy and relieved I am that finally, the storm is over. What I should focus on now is how I would survive after the storm, diba? There's no use lamenting over the damage. Geesh, I've been overdoing it the past 6 months. It's time that I do something about it. =p

For those who are undergoing something similar in your own lives, well, just keep believing. Nyaks, corny naman masyado no? I can't think of any other way of saying it eh! Basta pray ka lang ng pray hanggang mamatay ka, hehe! Just make sure though that you pray for the right things. In my case, I was so ready and willing to give up everything, even the better things in my life just because of the seemingly endless problems. But with the help of family and real friends, I just prayed for courage to face my own personal monsters, the strength to fight and defeat them, the hope to keep my spirits up, the wisdom to lead me to where I should be and what I should do and of course, the chance to make things right.

Let me end with the anthem chorus of the featured song in this post. It says it all eh. I need not expound, lest I start sounding like a preacher. Haha! =p

And every tear that had to fall from my eyes
Everyday I wondered how I'd get through the night
Every change life has thrown me
I'm thankful for every break in my heart
I'm grateful for every scar
Some pages turned
Some bridges burned
But there were lessons learned

The featured song in this post is LESSONS LEARNED by CARRIE UNDERWOOD. Its meaningful lyrics is powered with a hopeful arrangement. You might want to give it a try. =p

Monday, June 12, 2006

Top 10 Independence Day Edition

10 Religiosity – Before you raise your eyebrows, take note of the word I used. The dictionary says it means ‘excessively or sentimentally religious: excessively, sentimentally, or affectedly pious’. What I don’t like about us Filipinos being too religious is we tend to become bigots.
9 Crab Mentality – sino ba kasi nagpauso nito? Haay, if only we’d help each other instead. I don’t have much to say about it, it is what it is – destructive.
8 Lack of respect – May tendency kasi tayong masyadong palaban. Yung tipong ang gusto natin eh laging tayo ang masusunod. We don’t respect each other as much as we should.
7 Lack of long-term memory – it’s been said a lot of times in history. How could we forgive the people who are the reason we are in such a bad state economically? How could they roam the streets, living in luxury, while the rest of us struggle?
6 Lack of discipline – it’s the little things that give away our lack of it – we throw our garbage everywhere except in the proper places; it’s normal to be late; di tayo marunong pumila; we don’t follow rules. Rules are made for many reasons – for peace and order to reign is one of them. Unfortunately, it takes discipline to follow them.
5 Lack of honesty – ang pagpapalusot ang isa sa mga pinaka-nakakainis na ugali natin. We’d rather try to get away with things than be honest in the first place. We cheat inour elections; we cheat taxes; we cheat in our business.
4 Compromised principles – a lot of us, especially our leaders lack integrity. We tend to compromise our valued principles a lot, more often than not, for our own vested interests.
3 Lack of sense of country – we don’t value our country as much as we should. Again, it’s the littlest of things. Many of us don’t watch Filipino movies. Many of us would rather change citizenship than stick it out and succeed with each other. At the end of the day, nationalism is an vague concept when we should be passionate about our own heritage.
2 Colonial Mentality – while it is true at times, the belief that anything foreign is better than anything local sucks a lot. It where our lack of sense of country seeps in.
1 Self-pity – our worst problem as a people is our huge tendency to wallow in self-pity at our state as a nation. Why? Because it keeps us from concentrating on solving the problem. It prevents us from moving forward, improve and grow as a country. It makes us settle for mediocrity, because we’re convinced that it’s all we can achieve.

10 Adaptive – we are one of the most adaptive people in the world. We have this gift of adapting in style to any kind of environment. Kaya nga nagkalat tayo sa lahat ng bansa sa mundo, diba? Marunong tayong makisama.
9 Sense of humor – for us, laughter is the best medicine. We know how to balance business and pleasure. It’s an efficient coping mechanism that helps us get through the each day. Kaya natin tawananin ang mga problema, kaya natin tawanan an gating mga sarili.
8 Industriousness – one the reasons OFWs are such in demand. I guess it’s one of the better effect of years of being a poor country. We sure know the value of hard work. Todo-kayod tayo para lang maabot ang mga pangarap natin. We believe that in the end, it will all pay off.
7 Hospitality – we are a happy people, in spite and despite of all the bad things that life throws at our side of the earth. It’s the way we smile and the way we welcome strangers. Kasama ng galing natin sa pakikisama, kayang-kaya natin iparamdam sa kanila na pwede natin sila maging kapamilya o kapuso. =p
6 Faith – as a people, we sure know the power of prayer and keeping the faith. How many times have we relied on our unwavering faith to survive the worst kinds of tragedies? Madami na diba? Hindi tayo madaling mawalan ng pag-asa.
5 Creativity – we sure know how to deliver, even at limited resources. We have a good sense of what is beautiful and what is not so beautiful. Our knack for creativity helps us survive. In short, maabilidad tayong mga Pinoy.
4 Talent – it’s similar to creativity. We are a nation of world class achievers and performers. Our Champions can match the pipes of the American Idols. We’ve recently been at the top of the world, literally, 3 days in a row. Magaling naman kasi talaga tayo. Lahat kaya nating gawin. Diba nga minsan, tayo pa mismo ang nabibigla sa kakayahan natin?
3 Resilience – we’ve been wronged many times, we’ve suffered from oppressors for like forever, but we’re still standing as a race. Malakas kasi at matibay ang loob natin. We are experts at handling sensitive and heavy situations. Powered by our talent and faith, it is what makes us a country of survivors.
2 Compassion – as a suffering nation, we do know how it feels. We never fail to lend a helping hand not only to our fellowmen but also to other people. Sometimes, we don’t even have enough for ourselves, but we manage to give. May konsepto kasi tayo ng utang na loob. Alam natin, na baling araw, babalik din sa atin ang lahat ng naitulong natin.
1 Family values – it’s what defines us as human beings. We have close family ties. Hindi ba’t ito ang isang bagay na hindi maaalis sa pagkatao natin kahit saan tayo mapunta? Our love of family is what drives all of us to do the things we do. At the end of the day, what’s important for us is the family we go home to.

So there, enumerating these things down made me realize that if one will look closely, it’s the same basic values that strengthens and weakens us at the same time. More often than not, the same things drives us to do the worst and the best of things.
In the end, what really is essential is what each of us can contribute. Ayan, dito na pumapasok yung kadramahan and kabaduyan na kailangan natin magtulong-tulong, mag-kaisa para sa ikauunlad ng ating bayan. Diba? Hehe. Pwes, corny na kung corny, pero yun ang totoo. The problems we face as a people are real and serious. Nakakatakot at mahirap ba? Well, we can all start, again, with the little things. Little things become big when done by many. Ikaw, gawin mo yung parte mo. We’re more than 90 million people, for crying out loud! What if each of those know how to fall in line, follow traffic rules, do an honest day’s work, respect the people around them, help each other out (may isang sikat na libro tungkol dito, diba?). Mas gugustuhin mo pa bang tumira sa ibang bansa? Hindi siguro, diba? =p


My blog is nominated again for Filipino Blog of the Week at Composed Gentleman's Poll. Vote mo na ako! Sige na, sige na! Hehe! Maraming salamat! =p

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Blogs Galore! 7: New TV shows Edition


Inspite of it being dragging and boring most of the times and top that with an ill-considered host, it's a guilty pleasure that I'm hooked at this show, hehe! =p
*I'm actually a fan of Kris Aquino, but I don't think she's the perfect host for the show's format. Not that she sucks for me, pero basta, hindi niya bagay. I like her best of PGKNB sans the times she gets too nosy of the pyramid round contestants' personal lives.
*If you think about it, DOND is just a sophisticated and prolonged version of Laban Or Bawi crossed with Pera O Bayong. The all-important decision is made at the start of the game -- and that is to choose the box with the jackpot amount. What happens between the time when the player chooses which box he or she wants up to the time we learn what's in that box is the 'exciting' part.
*I'm still at awe at how Kris manages to get each of the 26K's names correctly. Wala naman siyang papel na hawak. Medyo malabo din ang teleprompter kasi half the time ay diretso ang tingin niya sa mga babae at hindi siya lumilingon kung saan-saan pa. Well, she probably met them weeks ago, and knowing Kris, she must've memorized their faces by then.
Anyway, gustung gusto ko pinapanood to pag kasama ko ang 3 kong pamangkin. Ginagaya nila kasi ang mala-April Boy gesture ni Kris whenever she shouts "deal or no deal?!" Kakatuwa nga eh, pag-uwi ko kahapon, nadatnan ko sila, playing their own version of the game. Nasa gate pa lang ako, naririnig ko na si Jasper shouting "deal or no deal?!" Tawa ako nang tawa pagpasok ko sa kwarto nila. Bakit? kasi nilabas nilang 3 magkakapatid ang mga briefs nila to serve as 'briefcases'. Haha! I know, kung matanda ang mag-jojoke about it, corny ang concept na gumamit ng brief as briefcases. Pero naman, maiisip ba iyon ng mga ordinaryong 7-year-old, 5-year-old at 4-year-old? Haha!


It's the new youth-oriented sitcom aired on the time slot used to be lorded over by TGIS, Growing Up, Gimik and Berks. Hehe. So ABS-CBN 2 decided to bring back the timeslot to teenagers, eh? On it's pilot ep, in fairness, tawa naman ako nang tawa, especially with the friendship bracelet thing. Ansaya kasi, medyo may pagka-UP ang feel ng cast ensemble. Kaya nga ba sa AS Steps shinoot yung isa sa mga commercial nito? Ewan. =p Sayang naman, I eventually read that it's a copycat from an old Korean series. Pero ok lang, since hindi ko naman napanood yun, edi feeling ko naman ay orig 'to, hehe. Tsaka nakaka-miss din yung may inaabangan ako tuwing Saturday. Nung maliit kasi ako, one of the weekend's highlights ang Saturday, 4pm. Pinapanood ko talaga ang mga teenybopper na palabas sa TV, hehe. Pero syempre, when I was a teenager myself, nacornihan na ako sa Gmik at Click. Paano ba naman, what they present on these shows is nothing like what I actually experience as a teenager.
Anyway, sana maging orig ang show na to, at least in terms of plot. At wag ka, may mall show pa pala ito, hehe. =p


Waw, totoo ba ito? Am I really posting about a Kapuso TV show? Hehe. Well, di ko naman talaga siya pinapanood, lalu na't katapat nito ang KDOND. But that didn't prevent me from getting curious about the show that been burying its competition alive with 40%+ ratings almost everyday. From what I've read, it's an extreme copycat of one of my favorite TV series - Smallville. Grabe daw ang pang-gagaya to the point na hindi na daw siya faithful sa story ng comics. (Sa mga CB fans, totoo ba ito?). So tuwing commercial, sinisilip ko ang GMA 7 for CB. Pero syempre, asa pa ako na ma-analyze ko nang husto ang worth ng show sa ilang segundo diba? So I'm going to say if it is indeed crap or not. What you'll read are just my observations, this isn't really a review.
*Si McDonald's Coke Float girl pala ang leading lady? Haha! Months ago lang eh lagi kong inaabangan yung commercial dahil nagandahan talaga ako sa kanya (to the disagreement of my friends, hehe). Aba, malayo na narating ni tell-me-is-it-love girl ah!
*For one, I don't really like Richard Gutierrez. Since his Click days, I've always considered him to be over-rated. Yeah, he's good-looking and all, but he doesn't deserve such volume of fans. At least si Angel Locsin (na I suppose ay kasing sikat niya, in terms of how much TV Ratings Power their TV starrers have), kahit papaano ay may acting talent.
*The $50,000(?) costume is impressive ah! But then again, alam kong medyo nagpalaki ng katawan si Richard (nasa Cosmopolitan yata siya, diba?), pero hindi pa obvious na hindi talaga ganoon ka-defined ang muscles niya? Gwapo si Richard Gutierrez kay Vic Sotto at Mark Bautista, pero at least alam nina Lastikman kung ano ang bagay sa kanila at hindi! Hehe. =p
So there, that's my 2 cents worth on CB. Nakakalungkot pero kung magka-square off between Teng and Clark, kahit Filipino si Teng, Clark na ko noh! No contest. Besides, at least Clark has decent surname. Teng 'Magtanggol'?! Anong nangyari sa magagaling na writers ng Encantadia at Etheria? Nasisante ba sila? =p It's sad that for a copycat, this show is having the lion's share of the ratings. Maybe because most of the GMA's loyal viewers don't watch Smallville, hehe.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Top 10 Types of Friends

Eto, nakalkal ko lang sa My Documents ko, isang lumang artik. Naalala ko lang na hindi ko pa pala ito naipopost sa blog ko, hehe. Winawarningan ko na kayo, medyo corny o madrama ang topic. But while you're at it anyway, isipin niyo na rin kung ilan sa mga kaibigan niyo ang ganito. Kung marami, ang swerte swerte mo. Especially yung mga lower number, kasi in order to. =p

10. High school friends
High school friends will be forever special in your life whether you will maintain contact with them or not after you graduate. They’re the people who had a big impact on your adolescent years – the time when whatever you’ll experience will greatly affect your future personality, ideology or outlook in life and the time when your hormones were raging (still raging up until present, I suppose, hehe).

9. The type who share your interests
What’s the latest NBA standings? Hey, let’s play Dota! Let’s watch MYMP this Saturday at Hilaga! Let’s play 123 Pass! Let’s have a Desperate Housewives marathon! Birds of the same feather flock together. When you’re together, it’s like your in your own little world talking about your common denominator and you could go all day. Iyung tipong makukuha pang ma-OP pati mga syota niyo kapag nagkita na kayo! =p

8. The type you don’t see often yet you still keep the bond
There are friends who see each other less than 5 times in a year, sometimes only during special occasions and therefore aren’t really updated on each other’s lives. They may have heard about general stuff like your most recent heartache or achievement, but they don’t really know the details. But when you do see each other, it’s like it was only yesterday since you last saw each other. It’s like there this Globe-like ribbon that keeps you connected despite the distance or silence.

7. The type whose company you enjoy
Acutally, katulad lang to ng #9 eh, pero iba pa rin. Enjoying each other’s company when you do a common hobby is one thing; enjoying each other’s company outside your common world is another. One of life ironies is that while birds of the same feather flock together, unlike poles attract. Sometimes it’s your chemistry together that makes you good friends with someone, despite and in spite of your differences.

6. The type who helps in problematic situations
Sa oras ng pangangailangan, doon mo talaga malalaman kung sino ang kaibigan mo. Whether it’s as simple as installing your new motherboard when you don’t even know what it’s for; as hard as getting P6,500 credited back into your ATM account (because the damn cash dispenser didn’t work!); or as painful as mending a broken heart, our people support would surely come in handy -- lalu na kapag walang kapalit.

5. The type who can be blatantly honest to you
Who can tell you to your face (without a violent reaction on your part) that what you’re wearing isn’t very flattering? Or hat you’re too arrogant or rude? Or that what you’re doing is stupid? Not too many, right? Iba kasi kapag kaibigan mo ang nagsasabi ng mga ganitong bagay sa iyo. It’s because we are assured that they only mean well if and when they frankly jolt us back to reality from time to time.

4. The type who sticks with you through the bad times
Most of the time, friendship is about the companionship it provides. It’s the point of having a friend – to keep you from being alone, especially during the bad times. It’s during these times when you realize who’s for real or who’s fake. In short, someone who’ll be there for us through thick and thin -- yung hindi mang-iiwan.

3. The type with whom you can entrust your life with
Being responsible for another human being is no joke. If you have lots of friends to whom you can entrust your life with, then you’re very lucky for friends like these are rare. Diba nga, sila ang nilalagay mo sa contact-person-in-case-of-emergency sa mga index cards na pinapa-fill-up ng mga professor mo? You can tell them your dark secrets, without fearing you’d be judged or betrayed. They’re more like your brother or sister instead of simply a friend – like family.

2. The type who knows you inside out like the back of their hand
You can never lie or deny things from these people, because they’ll know. They know that you're allergic to eggs. They’ll know when you’re already in love even if you deny it. They’ll know that you’re not okay even if you’d say “I’m okay”. They know your dreams, secrets, the things you hate, the things you love. They can predict your behavior to certain situations. Kilalang-kilala ka nila, alam nila ang gagawin nila sa iyo sa tuwing masaya o malungkot ka.

1. The type you grow old with
Marriages that last for decades are truly remarkable and admirable, so are friendships that last for the rest of your lives. Time is one of the ultimate signs of genuine friendship. Kunwari may isang handaan tapos dadalhin niyo ang mga apo ninyo. Syempre, sama-sama silang maglalaro. Then little angels would come up to you while you’re chatting with old friends and ask you innocently, “Lola Jong Jong, ilang taon na kayo friends ni Lolo Wexie?” Ansarap isagot na, “Haha! Ever since we can remember, apo..”, diba? The whispers of ‘wow’ whilst you see the admiration in their eyes will definitely elicit priceless pride on your part.

Sa lahat ng friends ko, para sa inyo 'to! Aylabyu ol! Haha! Wushu.. =p Kilala niyo na kung sino kayo.

My blog is nominated for Filipino Blog of the Week at Composed Gentleman's Poll. Please vote for me! Sige na, sige na! Hehe! Maraming salamat! =p

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Life according to Mary Alice Young 2

As promised, here's another batch of meaningful quotes from the Season 2 of Desperate Housewives. Hope you pick up more lessons here! =)

"Control – it’s extraordinary the tactics people employ to obtain it. Some rely on deception while others engage in outright trickery. Then there are those who resort to extortion. Why do we fight so hard for control? Because we know that to lose it, is to put our fate in the hands of others. And what could be more dangerous?"

"Everyone enjoys a game of make-believe every now and then. Of course the ways in which we play can vary greatly. Sometimes, we tell ourselves work won’t interfere with our family life. Sometimes we imagine that certain relationships are more than what they really are. Occasionally, we put on a show, as if to convince ourselves our secrets aren’t really all that terrible. Yes, the game of make-believe is a simple one. You start by lying to yourself. And if you can get others to believe those lies, you win."

"The world is filled with good fathers. How do we recognize them? They are the ones who are missed so terribly that everything falls apart in their absence. They're the ones who love us long before we’ve even arrived. They're the ones who come looking for us when we can't find our way home. Yes, the world is filled with good fathers. And the best are those who make the women in their lives feel like good mothers."

"Everyone in this world needs someone they can depend upon. Be it a faithful companion, a trusted confidante, loyal friend, determined advocates or a loving family. But occasionally in life, the people we thought would always be there for us leave. And if that happens, it’s amazing the lengths we go to, to get them back."

"Cameras are simple tools to capture images that tell us more about ourselves than we realize. They remind us of the long journey we’ve taken, the loved ones who traveled alongside with us, those we lost along the way and those waiting for us on the road ahead. Yes, cameras are designed to capture images, but in truth, they can capture so much more. They can uncover hidden longing of people who should no longer care. They can reveal the most extraordinary secrets of the most ordinary people. Most amazing of all, cameras can quietly but clearly reveal to us our dreams – dreams we didn’t even know we had."

"In a world filled with darkness, we all need some kind of light – whether it’s a great flame that shows us how to win back what we have lost, or a powerful beacon intended to scare away potential monsters, or a few glowing bulbs that reveal to us the hidden truth of our past. We all need something to help us get through the night, even if it’s just the tiniest glimmer of hope."

"Good guys wear white and bad guys wear black. This is how children distinguish between good and evil. But they soon learn that the bad guys don’t always look so bad. In fact, sometimes, they even seem downright friendly. That is, until you know them a little bit better. It is not always easy to distinguish the good guys from the bad guys. Sinners can surprise you and the same is true for saints. Why do we define people as simply bad or simply evil? Because no one wants to admit that compassion and cruelty can live side by side in one heart, and that anyone is capable of anything."

"The stories are as old as time itself. The prodigal son who returns to the father that forgives him. The jealous wife who tricks the husband who trusts her. The desperate mother who risks everything for the child who needs her. And the faithless husband who hurts the wife who loves him deeply. Why do we listen to these stories again and again? Because these are the stories of family. And once we look past the fighting, the pain and the resentment, we occasionally want to remind ourselves there is absolutely nothing more important."

"The act itself never varies, but each kiss carries with it a meaning all its own. It can convey a husband’s eternal devotion or a wife’s enormous regret. It can symbolize a mother’s growing concern or a lover’s growing passion. But whatever its meaning, each kiss, reflects a basic human need – a need to connect to another human being. This desire is so strong it’s always amazing when some people don’t understand."

"Illnesses can take on many forms. Those of the body are easy to treat. Much more difficult are the hidden maladies that are festering our hearts, increasing addiction that consume our souls, and the diseases we deny which affect our judgment. To survive, we find that special someone who can heal us. But we can never predict who will have the cure for what ails us or when they’ll show up."

"Everyone understands the nature of war. We also understand that victory depends on the cards that we’ve been dealt. Some, when faced with a bloody battle, simply give in. But for some, surrender is unacceptable. Even though they know it will be a fight to the death."

"The world is filled with unlikely friendships. How do they begin? With one person desperately in need, and another willing to lend a helping hand. When such kindness is offered, we can finally see the worth of those we have previously written off. And before we know it, a bond is formed, regardless of whether others can understand it. Yes, unlikely friendships start up everyday, no one understands this more than the lonely. In fact, it’s what they always count on."

"Now and then, we all need a little help. So we ask for small favors. But it’s always best to be wary of those who are eager to come to our rescue because even the smallest of favors carries a price tag. Yes, everyone has an agenda, no matter what they tell us. And in those rare instances when there is no ulterior motive, we’re so taken aback that we may fail to recognize the truth – that a loving friends has just done us an enormous favor."

"Temptation comes to all of us. Whether or not we succumb depends on our ability to recognize its disguise. Sometimes it arrives in the form of an old flame flickering back to life, a new friend who could end up being so much more or a young child who awakens feelings we didn’t know we had. And so, we give in to temptation, all the while knowing that come morning, we’ll have to suffer the consequences."

"We’ve all done something in our lives we’re ashamed of. Some of us have fallen for the wrong person, some have let go of the right one. There are those who have humiliated their parents, and those who failed their children. Yes, we’ve all made mistakes that diminish us and those we love. But there is redemption if we learn from those mistakes and grow."

"There is a prayer intended to give strength to people faced with circumstances they don’t want to accept. Its power come from its insight into human nature – because so many of us rage against the hand that life dealt us, because so many of us are cowardly and afraid to stand up for what is right, because so many of us give in to despair when faced with an impossible choice. “Lord, grant me the serenity to accept what I cannot change, the courage to change what I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."

"When the truth is ugly, people keep it hidden because if revealed, they know the damage it’ll do. So they conceal it within sturdy walls, place it behind closed doors or they obscure it with clever disguises. But the truth, no matter how ugly, always emerges. Someone you care about always ends up getting hurt. And someone else will revel in their pain – that’s ugliest truth of all."

"If I could, would I tell them what lies ahead? Would I warn them of the sorrow and betrayal that lie in store? No. From where I stand, I can see enough of the road to understand how it must be traveled. The trick is to keep moving forward, to let go of the fear and the regret that slow us down and keep us from enjoying the journey that will be over too soon. Yes, there will be unexpected bends in the road, shocking surprises that we didn’t see coming. But that’s really the point, don’t you think?"

My blog is nominated for Filipino Blog of the Week at Composed Gentleman's Poll. Please vote for me! Sige na, sige na! Hehe! Maraming salamat! =p

Saturday, June 03, 2006

You are what you forward

It's been almost 10 months since Globe launched TXTNONSTOP and now that it is for good, it has been renamed UNLIMITXT. I know that I'm one of those who have been tirelessly forwarding all sorts of text quotes, syempre, sayang naman ang Unli ko diba? But lately, I've been a little kinda annoyed by it.

My cellphone number is 5 years old already -- I only got a phone when I graduated in High School. Hindi naman talaga ako pala-text na tao. Of course, aside from the usual communication with your friends and family, I also send quotes from time to time. Dati, ang prinsipyo ko ay 'I only forward what I really mean'. I don't forward quotes with mushy themes like I'm so thankful you're my friend to my mere acquaintances just for the sake of forwarding anything. I'd rather forward a joke or random words of wisdom. I save the more serious text quotes to my real and actual friends. Syempre, sayang ang piso no, at saka baka isipin pa nila feeling-close ako. But when unlimited texting came, it changed things a little. Well, my principle of forwarding only what I mean remains intact, but of course, I get to forward more jokes and random words of wisdom. But after almost 10 months of forwarding texts, some messages are starting to lose their meaning. I am not flattered at all when someone whom I haven't seen for years (but has remained in my phonebook, nevertheless) suddenly texts me, "when you're gone, my world will never be as happy." Aargh! Hindi ko alam kung kaplastikan ba iyon or kasinungalingan. Haha!

I have around 11 subfolders in my inbox just to organize the many texts I receive everyday. I have a subfolders for messages sent by orgmates, schoolmates in college and schoolmates in high school. I also have separate subfolders for jokes and love quotes. So one time, I realized that a select group of friends send me my daily dose of love quotes. Same is true for my funny quotes. Haha!

One time, I was with my friend when I received yet another tragic love quote from an acquaintance. I asked my friend, "Bakit ba may mga tao na ang hilig magforward ng mga sawing love quotes, no?" My friend only managed a shrug and a smile, "Hehe, eh kasi, nakaka-relate sila.." Oo nga naman. When I look at the brand of texts I forward, I realize that each quote I forward contains indeed a piece of myself. Exag ba? Haha!

Sige, isipin niyo tong mabuti. When you want to forward a joke, would you forward something that wasn't even funny to you? Hindi diba? So in effect, each text joke you forward represents something that made you laugh, which is therefore a little piece of your mind, of yourself.

When you receive a tragic love quote, mapapa-'awwww' ka ba when you're happy in love? Hindi masyado diba? The tragedy might thug a string in your heart, but since you know first hand how a blooming lovelife feels like, you'd probably erase the text after reading it. Instead, you'd prefer to send love quotes with happily-ever-after endings, right?

As for me, I try to put some variety to the messages I forward. OC talaga ako! Haha! I like sending jokes because I know how good it feels when somebody texts you a funny joke in a random time of the day and it so happened that at that very moment, a good laugh is what you needed the most. Pero syempre, hindi naman puro joketime ang totoong buhay. I also love sending meaningful messages that I get from the stuff that I read, the shows that I watch (especially Desperate Housewives) and sometimes, from the lessons I personally experience. You'll never know what good effect each lesson-packed text you send could bring to the people in your forwarding lists.

I rarely send love quotes nowadays. Why? Maybe it's because love isn't a very appealing topic for me right now. Haha! Bitter Ocampo! Hehe! Plus, I don't receive a lot of love quotes that are worth forwarding for me. I don't really like those tragic love quotes that I get all the time from the same people. The message I get is bordering on depressing and miserable -- that it's better to not love at all because you'd just end up getting hurt. Love is one of the broadest topics in the world, its being painful is just a portion of it. Can't they forward any positive things about love? Pwede naman diba? =p

It's also then I realized that we are what we forward. Comment nga ng friend ng Ate ko, may kalokohan din pala ako sa katawan nang mabasa niya ang mga finoforward kong messages sa kanya, akala kasi niya lagi akong serious. When you mass-forward text messages, you don't only proclaim to the texting population that you are on UNLIMITXT (aminin mo, nagfoforward ka lang, kasi sayang ang UNLIMITXT mo? Hehe). It's as good as letting people know how you are feeling or what you are thinking at the moment. Tama ba ako? You forward something you want to share, especially when it's virtually free. Haha! Something made you laugh -- so you decide to share the laughter! Something made you awwww -- so you decide to share it! Haha! Something made you learn a lesson -- so you decide to share the good realization. Naku! May naisip tuloy ako. So what does it means when you forward too much green jokes? =p

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Life according to Mary Alice Young

At the start of the week, I watched the second season finale of Desperate Housewives. It was 2 episodes worth and it was a thrilling end to a generally boring season, hehe. Nevertheless, the wisdom of the late Mary Alice Young has never been better. I guess, when someone's already dead, it is then when we learn a lot more about life. =p So I thought I'd share some meaningful words that Mary Alice say at the end of every episode in Season 1. I'll post the Seasons 2 quotes next time. I hope you pick up a lesson or two from these -- because I sure did. It's what I like the most about the series -- many times, it makes me see things in life in a different but better way.

Nothing is forever. The time will come when we must say goodbye to the world we knew, goodbye to everything we had taken for granted, goodbye to those we thought would never abandon us. And when these changes finally do occur, when the familiar has departed and the unfamiliar has taken its place. All any of us can really do is to say hello and welcome."

"Marriage is a simple concept. Basically, it’s a contract between two people and binds them together for life, in the hopes that they can live happily ever after. The vow is simple really, those who take it, promises to stay together for better or worse, for richer or for poorer in sickness and in health, to honor and to cherish, forsaking all others until death do us part. Yes, the vow is simple, finding someone worthy of such a promise is the hard part. But if we can, that’s when we begin to live happily ever after."

"Life is a journey one that much better traveled with a companion by our side. Sometimes, we lose our companions along the way and then the journey becomes unbearable. You see, human beings are designed for many things, but loneliness isn't one of them."

"Children come into the world with agendas – some to brighten our days, some to test our patience, some to give us purpose, some to take care of us. Yes, when they come, children change everything, especially when they're not invited."

"It is often that good news travels fast, but we all know that bad news, moves quite a bit faster. Yes, everyone loves a scandal, no matter how big or how small. After all, what could be more entertaining than watching the downfall of the high and mighty? What could be more amusing than the public exposure of hypocritical sinners? And if for some reason, you're not enjoying the latest one, the next one is always around the corner."

"Each new morning brings with it a new set of lies – little white lies, told not to hurt but to make life more pleasant. They tell these lies to protect themselves and their reputation. Of course, every now and then, someone finally decides to tell the truth. The worst lies are the ones we tell ourselves before we go to sleep. We whisper them in the dark telling ourselves we’re happy, or that we can change, or that other people will change their mind. We persuade ourselves we can live with our sins. Yes, each night before we fall asleep we lie to ourselves in a desperate, desperate hope that come morning, it will all come true."

"It’s impossible to grasp just how powerful love is. It can sustain us through trying times or motivate us to make extraordinary sacrifices. It can force decent men to commit the darkest deeds or compel ordinary women to search for hidden truths. And long after we’re gone, love remains burned into our memories. We all search for love. But some of us, after we found it, wish we hadn’t."

"Even the most responsible among us have mistakes in their past -- mistakes they’d like to forget, mistakes that sometimes come back to haunt them. Sooner or later, time will come that we must become responsible adults, and learn to give what we won't so we can choose what is right. Of course, a lifetime of responsibility isn't always easy. And as the years go on, it’s a burden that can become too heavy for some to bear. But still we try to do what is best, what is good, not only for ourselves but for those we love."

"We are all searching for someone, that special person, who will provide what’s missing in our lives -- One who can offer companionship, assistance or security. And sometimes when we can search very hard who can provide us with all three. Yes, we are all searching for someone. And if we can't find them we can only pray they find us."

"Trust is a fragile thing. Once burned, it affords us tremendous freedom. But once trust is lost, it can be impossible to recover. Of course, the truth is, we never know whom we can trust. Those we’re closest to can betray us, and total strangers can come to our rescue. In the end, most people decide to trust only themselves. It really is the simplest way to keep from getting burned."

"People are complicated creatures. On the one hand, capable of great acts of charity, and on the other, capable of the most underhanded forms of betrayal. It’s a constant battle that rages within all of us, between the better angels of our nature and the temptations of our inner demons. And sometimes, the only way to ward off the darkness is to shine the light of compassion."

"There is a widely read book that tells us everyone is a sinner. Of course, not everyone feels guilt over the bad things they do. In contrast, there are those who seem to take more than their share of the blame. There are others who soothe their consciences with small acts of kindness or by telling themselves their sins are justified. Finally, there are the ones who simply vow to do better next time and pray for forgiveness. Sometimes, their prayers are answered."

"Competition – it means different things to different people. But whether it’s a friendly rivalry or a fight until the end, the results are the same, there will be winners and there will be losers. Of course the trick is, to know which battles to fight. You see, no victory comes without a price."

"The search for power begins when we’re quite young. As children we’re taught that the power of good triumphs over the power of evil. But as we grow older, we learn that things aren’t that simple. Traces of evil always remain."

THIS DAY IN 2005: it's the first day of enrollment at UPD! I ended the tiring day of pilahan, sikskan and kunsumisyon that is typical of UPD enlisment by watching MADAGASCAR with my high school friend / fresh graduate (at that time) Kiks. We also had dinner at Wendy's, kasi may discount card siya doon, hehe.. =p

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