Recent Thoughts

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Singing Sensay-syon

Last Tuesday, me and my orgmates had a videoke session at a local 'beerhouse'. Yeah, I know, it's not a posh KTV lounge or at least a decent booth in an arcade but don't let the term 'beerhouse' influence you into thinking that we were in a, erm, 'bad place'. Well, it's a garage with a videoke machine, tables and chairs and they serve beer, so I called it a 'beerhouse'.

So what did I sing? Well, there's Smooth by Rob Thomas.. To Be With You by Mr Big.. This Kiss by Faith Hill.. Faith Hill?! What the! Yeah I know, but I only sang it to spite Porshe because the song reminds her of someone and it pisses her off! Haha! I tried to channel Sanjaya by looking for Something To Talk About on the songbook, but it wasn't there. Same with When The Stars Go Blue and all other songs performed in the current season of American Idol that I learned to love. That's what I love with American Idol - it introduces my to music beyond my generation, beyond my personal contemporary taste. I used to hate country songs whenever Papa used to play them back in my younger years, but thanks to Carrie Underwood, I learned to appreciate and even love country music.

We Filipinos, just to love to sing, right? Even if we're not really good at it. I am no exception. Music is my passion. Well, not in a I-know-to-play-an-instrument and I-want-to-be-a-rockstar-someday kind of way. It's just that I love listening to music - it's something I can't live without (so I guess I should've said 'Listening to music is my passion', eh?) More than 50% of the memory usage of my phone is attributed to MP3 files that I listen to whenever I'm on-the-go. I have a separate hard disk partition especially devoted to my MP3 files (because I don't want to lose them each time I'd have to reformat my laptop or in case of a viral attack on my C).

That night, I commented, "Mabuti pa si Argel (another orgmate and once a videoke-buddy), magaling mag-videoke.." A friend asked me to elaborate because I added that a good singer and a good videoke singer are two different things (though it usually follows that if you're a good singer, you're a good videoke singer, but not vice versa). I said, "Pareho kaming hindi kagandahan ang boses, pero sa videoke, nadadaan niya sa performance kaya ma-e-entertain ka pa rin.." (Yihee, Argel, this comment pimps you bigtime, eh? Haha!)
That's why I love videoke sessions, it's the next best thing to a singing career. But unlike Argel, I'm not even remotely good at videoke at the very least, given the (huge) handicap that I already have because I don't even have a good voice to begin with. So, I only sing in front of my friends (whom I know would still be my friends after hearing me sing), so you could say that each of my performances is an exclusive one, haha!

But my lack of videoke talent isn't going to stop me from practicing -- I've been bugging my Dad for ages to buy us a Magic Sing (I'm really convinced it will make a difference if I have something to practice on, haha!). For we're planning another videoke session this week and I've been constantly listening to the songs I am planning to 'perform'. Yeah, this early, I already have a repertoire, haha! Pati nga yung numbers nila sa machine, nakalista na. =p

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Dr. Quack Quack

When I introduced myself on the stage back in my Prep graduation, I announced that I wanted to be a doctor someday. I guess it comes with the innocence -- I hardly know anyone who never wanted to be a doctor when they were little. When we were kids, being a doctor is like one of the coolest jobs (along with being a lawyer). Of course, as we grow older and as we develop new interests, we eventually realize our true calling in this world.

I lost my interest in medicine in my late elementary years. While I don't necessarily faint, seeing blood, whether mine or otherwise, makes me cringe. I realized then, being a doctor is definitely a no-no. Even if my interest in life sciences (Biology, Anatomy, etc) surged during my sophomore year in high school because of my competent teacher in Biology, I still knew that medicine wasn't my true calling.

As you all know, I took up Computer Engineering instead of a pre-med course in college. My 5-unit Chem 16 course in freshman year further bolstered my resolve that medicine isn't for me. But recently, I'm having 'second thoughts', I am starting to think that I might make a good 'doctor'. A love doctor, that is! Haha!

An acquaintance recently told me that I'm better than Joe D'Mango. I laughed at the idea. I mean come on, Joe D'Mango is way way up there when it comes to giving advices on love. And then there's the two friends of mine whose respective relationships recently ended. For the past months or so, I've been 'treating' them. One time, one of them texted me and asked, "Doc, pwede pong magpa-konsulta ulit?" And when I said 'yes', a series of lengthy text messages ensued thereafter, hehe.

Churning out advices is no big deal for me.
I actually get a lot of thank-yous because of the advices that I give my friends. I mean, I have a brain that could think, it's just natural for me to have an opinion on anything. Whether an opinion of mine makes actual sense is another story, right? But when my friends tell me how helpful I was, I must admit, it feels flattering. But not to be arrogant or something - because I don't claim to be an all-knowing person, but if my mind's two cents worth turns out to be actually helpful, why not. I just feel glad to be of help to my friends. To by able my duty as a friend is what matters, and not the fact that I know more about things.

Now that I think about, it looks like I am the go-to-guy. How I come up with meaningful advices is beyond me. I actually am amazed at how I am able to advice friends of mine when it comes to their love problems. For starters, I've only been in one relationship. It was back in junior year (take note, high school pa to!), and I don't even consider it to be a serious one. Not that it was a fling or what, it's just that considering how short the relationship was, I feel that I couldn't really consider it as a decent experience of love. I fell in love a number of times after that though, but my success rate is 0%, hehe. Therefore, I am actually a loser when it comes to dating, haha!

What's more amazing in a weird and ironic but amusing kind of way is that the most of the friends I give advice to has had more experience when it comes to love. I mean, how could a perpetually single like me become a love guru to someone who's been in at least 2 serious relationships, the latest of which lasted for 5 years? Where do I get all the ideas? I don't really know. Cupid probably whispers to my ears or something. Some of my friends say that it's like I could 'see through them', that's why I almost always give sound advice. I supposedly know the right things to say, at the right time. Again, I have no idea how I do it.

I guess it helps to be a third party observer with no ulterior motive whatsoever in the situation other than wanting the best for my friends. I am capable to see things in a clearer light for them because I am not the one in love. I am not the one with feelings. Feelings, especially the love kind, clouds our judgment and defies all logic. It makes us compromise things we never thought we'd compromise.

So, if you happen to have a problem on love, just contact me at your own risk -- I give out advice for free. But know that I'm just good in theories and concepts, but when it comes to methods (in layman's terms, hearththrobs and players use the term 'diskarte'), I am just as clueless, haha!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Beach Thoughts

Summer is very much equated with the beach, right? Well, I guess it's fair enough that one wouldn't trek to the beaches during the stormy season.

I've only been to the beach twice in my whole life. One in Zambales (2005) and one in Hawar Island Bahrain (2000). My beach sojourn in Zambales was with my orgmates and it was an actual resort. The sand on the beach itself was not what I hoped it would be. The sand was gray and a little rocky. Think construction sites, hehe. But the sand on the nearby island was way way better! Too bad we could stay there for a little while only. My orgmates tried to teach me how to float. Perfect venue, eh? Kamusta naman ang mga waves na humahampas sa ilong ko, haha!

My beach trip in Bahrain wasn't exactly a relaxation type of visit. Hawar is the military island where my Papa works and that afternoon, we were just driving around, sight-seeing. Since it was a military island, the only settlements present were the military camp and the plant that Papa manages, the resort hotel and some a few buildings that I really had no idea what they were. So imagine all the free stretch of sand-and-sea rendezvous at my disposal. The beach where we stopped by wasn't exactly resort material. Although the sand was smooth and white, there were pearl-sized rocks everywhere. And there were all these little baby crabs that were threatening me with their clamps. (Ke-liit-liit, antatapang, parang nag-yayaya ng suntukan, haha!). We still went for a swim though, the water was only shallow for the first few tens of meters. It was my first time and I didn't know how to swim (up to now) so I wasn't really able to savor the moment. My fears got the best of me, so it wasn't long before I 'walked' back to shore. And the school of white jellyfish ahead of me wasn't exactly welcoming, haha!


I love swimming, but beaches were never my thing. Don't get me wrong, I would enjoy going to the beach but I wouldn't be exactly jumping for joy when it comes to the swimming aspect of the gimik. My lack of swimming skills is definitely a huge constraint in exploring an unconfined and huge space of water. I would enjoy the sunset view though; and making weird structures in the sand; bonfires, if ever. The company I'm with would matter more than the quality of the sand.

I've been aching for a getaway for the past few weeks. But alas, I don't really have enough savings to do something outrageous and adventurous, like going to a faraway beach by myself (or with someone). You know, 'hahanapin ko ang sarili ko', like they always say in the movies, hehe!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Upgraded!

I've decided to upgrade my template and finally use widgets. And by doing that, I had to choose one of the default template in the meantime. I would have to personalize the whole thing all over again! Aaargh!
So, if while you get to read this and see that my layout's a mess, forgive me, 'cause this blog is under construction, hehe. Balik kayo in a day or two. Ayos na to! :)

I must say, medyo naninibago ako. Twice na ako gumawa ng template sa old Blogger, kaya medyo nasanay na ako sa brute-force approach pagdating sa mga HTML tags and all. Kaya, good luck na lang sa akin!

In the meantime, naibalik ko na ang Cbox at HaloScan ko. Kaya mag-comment na kayo kung hindi pa kayo nakakapag-comment sa mga posts ko, hehehe! Try reading my post this time last year.

April 24, 2.35am

Yikee! I finally finished my new layout! Finished the whole thing in 4 hours, ehehe. Pero hindi pa siya tapos. Di ko pa nabalik yung pagka-haba-habang About Me sa sidebar na source ng 90% ng aking hits dahil sa mga naghahanap ng lyrics or download ng mp3 ng mga kantang nasa "Current playlist favorites" section ko, hehehe! Sa footer ko na lang ilalagay, para naman may laman siya.

So what do you guys think sa bago kong template? Summer mode - beach and header ko. Ni hindi man ako marunong lumangoy, haha! I've switched from Flickr Badge to a slide show that I got from Maan's Friendster. Anlaki nga eh, para namang sobrang gwapo ko pa ipangalandakan ang mga pics ko, haha! Anyway, the people I'm with on the pictures are more good-looking than me, hehe!

Someone I used to know is celebrating his birthday today, napansin ko lang. I wish him hell, este I wish him well pala, haha! My bad. *devilish grin*

Friday, April 20, 2007

Finally!

I'm sure the bloggosphere will be filled with posts related to Sanjaya's ouster on the latest season of American Idol. This blog will be no exception! Haha! The current season is already halfway in its running, but this will be my first time to blog about this season. Here it goes.

My bet for the Finale at the Kodak Theatre are Jordin Sparks and Melinda Doolittle. While Mindy Doo is hands down the best singer and performer in this batch, Jordin isn't far behind in terms of talent and appeal.

Obviously, Doolittle is lacking in the looks department, but whatever, we all know what extended exposure in bigtime TV can do to you. In fact, her stylist has finally nailed the perfect look for her in the Top 7 Performance Week. They finally found a way to divert attention away from her neck (or lack of it).

At present, I'd have to say that Jordin is my personal bet for the title. And it's not because she looks better. It's just that Jordin's song choices appeal to me more than Melinda's. But if Melinda wins it, I would still be jumping for joy. But when it comes to buying their eventual albums (or rather, downloading them on Multiply), Jordin's would be my first priority.

Blake would by my #3. But I have a feeling that he will be this season's Chris Daughtry. His unique and contemporary musical style should translate to huge records sales, despite lagging behind Jordin and Melinda in terms of vocal power.

Lakisha is also a joy to watch, but apparently, I don't have this feeling of attachment to her. You know, that kind of attachment that avid fans have towards their singing idols. I don't really know if it would be considered 'lack of personality'.

Despite my tendency to go back to my boy band preference roots, Chris would only place 5th in my book. Simon's right, he can be very 'nasal' mos of the time. I like his song choices though.

Phil should be next. He's probably the most vocally powerful male left in the competition. But I don't really like most of his performances. There's is no awe or fondness at all. Ironically, I'm more fond of his pretty wife Kendra, who always watches in the studio each performance and results show, always clapping for her man, regardless of whether or not he nailed his performance.

As for Sanjaya, well, it's about time he gets the boot. He and his wild but entertaining hairstyles have milked their popularity enough. (Yeah, his hair is a different entity, haha!). But I gotta hand it to this guy for his witty play with the lyrics of his exit song -- singing "let's give them something to talk about.. other than hair" instead of ".. how about love". Sanjaya dear, you will not be missed. There is still justice in the world, despite the tragic shooting at Virginia Tech.

Hmm, it makes me wonder, was Sanjaya voted out because the gunman of the Virginia Tech shooting was also Asian? Hmm..

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Blogs Galore! 17: Luid ya ing Kapampangan

KAPAMPANGAN KU

If you care to check my profile on this blog's left sidebar, you'd know that I am a Kapampangan. I was born and raised in City of San Fernando, Pampanga. When I had to live in Quezon City for college, I was literally a 'probinsyano' in the city. But adjustment wasn't so hard of me. Because firstly, San Fernando is pretty urbanized, and secondly, there were a lot of other probinsyanos around me in the university. Of course, during freshman year, the topic of where one came from and from what high school one graduated from often comes up. Of course, I would proudly say that I am from Pampanga. I didn't mind if all these kids from the metro seem to be the cooler ones because they know the ins and outs of the city. I never felt that us people from the province where the strange, backward people that local movies often portray. For I knew that we have a huge advantage over these more urbanized spoiled brats -- we can speak 3 languages, Filipino, English and our native dialect (Kapampangan in my case). Ha! It sure is fun whenever me and my Kapampangan orgmates would converse in Kapampangan and the people around us do not have any idea. Sometimes even, we talk about them! Haha!
To be a proud Kampangan, it sure helps that there are a lot of famous Kapampangans - the Aquinos, Jose Abad Santos, the Macapagals, Apl de Ap of the Black Eyed Peas and Efren Bata Reyes. And of course more recently, Aljur Abrenica of Starstruck fame and Ronnie Liang of Pinoy Dream Academy.

If you want to know more about the Kampangan culture in a not so boring way, visit the blog of Jason AKA Kamaru. At such a young age, he's such an advocate of our rich culture. At wag kayo, malayong pinsan ko pala siya, hehe!


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AMONG ED for GOVERNOR

You've probably heard in the news that a priest is running for governor in our province. Yes, the Church's intervention in state affairs and politics can be irritating at times, but not in this case. For almost a decade now, Pampanga has been ruled by supposed leaders with questionable competence. And in the upcoming elections, two shady and powerful characters are running for the top post at the capitol. It seemed that us Kapampangans had to choose the lesser of two evils. That is, until Among Ed Panlilio decided to run. Of course, it's pretty obvious that I'd be voting for this guy. I cannot stress enough how detrimental the Quarry Prince and Jueteng First-Lady are to the Kapampangan people. So if you are reading this and you are a Kapampangan, please vote for Among Ed. Unless of course if you're underaged or you weren't able to register as a voter. Nevertheless, ask your family and friends to vote for him. Please help us do a Padaca in Pampanga.

For more information:
http://edpanlilio.blogspot.com
http://www.amonged.org

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IRREPLACEABLE

I am sure that you've heard of Beyonce Knowles' Irreplaceable. It's such a catchy R&B tune, right? It never is easy, but it's such an enjoyable song to sing along to. Imagine my surprise when I stumbled upon the Kapampangan version of Irreplaceable thru Kamaru's blog. The version was performed (and probably translated as well) by a female duo who calls themselves Mernuts.

Check it out:


If you're not Kapampangan, I am sure you won't understand and you probably think it's baduy and you wouldn't appreciate it. But coming from someone who can understand it, it actually is quite cool. Ampo syempre, buri keng pag-maragul, diba?

Friday, April 13, 2007

Top 10 things about the #7

SEVEN is..

1. ..the number of spots on a common ladybug

2. ..the number of bones on all mammal's necks (with very few exceptions)
3. ..the neutral pH - the pH level of pure water
4. ..the number of layers in the OSI model of computer networks
5. .. the number of Deadly sins. Pride, Anger, Lust, Envy, Gluttony, Avarice, Sloth. But, there are 7 Virtues: Chastity, Moderation, Liberality, Charity, Meekness, Zeal, and Humility. (Hindi ko natutunan 'to sa Catholic school ko ah! Siguro mahirap gawan ng acronym, unlike PALEGAS!)
6. ..the 'most magical number' in the Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
7. ..the number of the super secret agent, James Bond.
8. ..a lucky, safe and happy number.
9. ..day when God rested after 6 days of creating stuff.
10. ..is the number of years I would have to spend in undergraduate college, instead of 5. Or even 6. (I actually thought it would be 6 at the maximum. Apparently not). *A big, exasperated sigh*

Please don't say 'Okay lang yan'. It's such a nincompoop cliche right now. Na-tribute na ako sa org, nag-pa-gradpic, nag-apply sa mga companies at lahat -- all for nothing. I've known for weeks actually, pero para wala nang nagtatanong, eto, ina-announce ko na.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Candy! Candy!

I probably heard "Candy! Candy!" a million times yesterday, thanks to my campaign motorcade experience yesterday at Sta Ana, Pampanga. An orgmate of mine, Neslee Pamintuan, is running for Municipal Councilor there. She's only 23 years old and although I know she is very capable, I didn't expect she the type who would want to be a public servant.

So as a gesture of support from her AguFamily, we joined her first town-wide motorcade yesterday -- and it was a great experience, sans the sunburn. You see, we weren't able to realize beforehand that the motorcade, was well, going to be that hot and sunny, hehe!

Naturally, the candies were intended for the kids, who can't vote anyway. But it was really amusing that even the grown-ups were asking for the assorted sweets. Even the manongs & manangs were literally shouting and craving for candies. But since there was limited supply only, there were times when Ness wasn't able to throw enough candies everyone. Some adults would even sarcastically quip, "Nuko, karakal namang kende!" (Rough translated to: Naku naman, andaming candy!) There was a time when Ness commented to herself, "Humihingi pa ng candy, eh andaming candy sa tindahan niya," when we passed by a sari-sari store manned by a 40-something woman. Haha!

On a shallow level, the motorcade experience was fun, because I rarely experience being looked at as a celebrity of some sort by strangers. All eyes were on us. One grandmother even thought I was Polo Ravales because an orgmate overheard her, "Ay ba, kayabe ne y Polo.." (Roughly translated to: "Naks naman, kasama niya si Polo.."). Haha! Not to be braggy about it, because the truth is, I don't see the Polo Ravales angle in me that other people obviously see.

But on a deeper level, I was humbled by the experience. I wasn't the one running for public office, but as Neslee shared some campaign anecdotes, I realized how much power she would have if and when she wins. She will actually have the power to make a change in the lives of her townmates.

Such power, and doing something positive with it, is one power I would like to have someday. But I don't think I am going to be in local politics though -- at least not any time soon. My leadership experience with Aguman back when I was an active leader was a major training for me. So I can fairly say that my noble desire to serve the public and the strong principles that my great parents inculcated in me are enough qualifications for a public office. In fact, I can say that I am more qualified to run than my high school batchmate who is running for Councilor
1 at my own city. But alas, I am not good at sucking up, haha! Because unfortunately, to win an election in Philippine politics, one must be willing to do a lot of sucking up - to the other candidates, to the people, to the voters. I don't have the charisma required of candidates, hehe!

Joining Neslee's campaign sortie meant I had to wake up early in the morning, despite having only 3 hours of sleep. But the wonderful, eye-opening experience was well worth it. Naks, puyat na ako't lahat, napagkamalan pa rin akong artista. My pair of shades sure came in handy! And deceptive, haha! =p

1 Thanks to Rotary Club of San Fernando (P), I was actually able to become our city's First Councilor back in senior year in high school. We were youth government officials at our city hall for a week, doing company visits, meet and greet with our real government official counterparts, free lunches and snack and some actual city council work. And I got P1,000 stipend, hehe!

Monday, April 09, 2007

Holy Week Thoughts 2

So this time last year, I posted this. It was just my Holy Week reflection post last year. Which is what I am about to do right now, thus the title.

Palm Sunday - Nothing spectacularly holy except for the Holy Mass I attended in the evening. It was a rest day for me, the past few days have been stressful -- seriously stressful, this is not a random immature rant where it's as if I am the unluckiest person in the world.

Holy Monday - Stressful days resume. My semester wasn't over yet, and I had this machine problem I had to finish with a group mate but wasn't able to.

Holy Tuesday - A day of reckoning. It's the day the Lord has made. Haha! I had to take a Comprehensive Exam for a major. It was supposed to be easy. In the evening, I had to finish a take home exam for another major.

Holy Wednesday - I passed my take home exam in the morning and immediately went home to Pampanga so as not to be caught by the massive traffic jam that will be caused by the 5-day Lenten weekend.

Maundy Thursday - I was finally able to do something 'holy'. I went church-hopping with an orgmate for the traditional Bisita Iglesia. Mind you -- we had to commute. It was tiring, yes, because of the riding and riding of different jeepneys. But it was still fun. Besides, I had our itinerary all planned out so as to visit 7 churches with the least hassle. I used Djikstra's Algorithm to solve the minimum cost problem of visiting 7 unique churches. Weeeh. Joke! Haha!

Good Friday - Stayed at home the whole day because I started reformatting my laptop. I had to transfer my 20GB+ files to the desktop PC before I could reformat.

Black Saturday - I watched Ang Cute Ng Ina Mo and Sunshine. Alone. Yeah, watching movies alone is an activity I actually enjoy. Both films delivered by the way. ACNIM was very funny and Sunshine was, err, very shiny? Haha!

Easter Sunday - I finally finished reformatting my laptop, so now, it's the equally arduous task of copying back my files. It took me 2 days to back them up, by the way.

So there, strictly speaking, my Holy Week was not as holy as it should be. To be honest, it's because I am still in a daze. As to why, just wait for furthur announcements in the coming days. It's going to be a sad one.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

When I Say "I Am A Christian"

When I say, "I am a Christian," I'm not shouting, "I've been saved!"
I'm whispering, "I get lost! That's why I chose this way"

When I say, "I am a Christian," I don't speak with human pride
I'm confessing that I stumble-needing God to be my guide

When I say, "I am a Christian," I'm not trying to be strong
I'm professing that I'm weak and pray for strength to carry on

When I say, "I am a Christian," I'm not bragging of success
I'm admitting that I've failed and cannot ever pay the debt

When I say, "I am a Christian," I don't think I know it all
I submit to my confusion asking humbly to be taught

When I say, "I am a Christian," I'm not claiming to be perfect
My flaws are far too visible but God believes I'm worth it

When I say, "I am a Christian," I still feel the sting of pain
I have my share of heartache which is why I seek His name

When I say, "I am a Christian," I do not wish to judge
I have no authority -- I only know I'm loved


I first encountered this poem by Carol Wimmer at Kuya Milben's blog. And I was moved by it ever since because it is exactly what I feel with my faith. I am a practicing Catholic by the way, but I acknowledge that I am not that religious. And neither am I perfect. So here, in time for the Holy Week, I just wanna share the poem. Hope you're having a meaningful week! =)

PS. Sa mga textmates ko, finorward ko na to diba? Apparently, yung na-forward ko ay yung shortcut version. Eto daw yung original, naka-copyright pa sa author ito. Check out the story behind it here: www.carolwimmer.com.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Plirting and playing

So! The supposed 'dangerous' and 'flirtacious' behavior by Dionne and Zeke is deemed a big deal that the people behind PBB2's editing gave ample airtime to their 'thing' for the episode that would air opposite Starstruck The Next Level's Final Judgement last week. And in the Entertainment Section of PDI today, Dionne and Zeke's 'thing' is featured. Apparently, PBB2 was reprimanded by the MTRCB for the two housemates' behavior.

Just yesterday night, Zeke was evicted via the voting public's decision. And barely escaping eviction was Dionne herself. So does this mean that the modern Filipino hates flirting? Maybe. Maybe not. Haha!

'Plirting' is not my cup of tea. In fact, I hate it. Why? Because I don't know how to plirt. Haha! *Cough* Bitter dork!
*Cough*

But seriously, I am not fond of plirting -- or plirts for that matter. Especially when people who plirt are in relationships. Therefore, their plirtacious behavior proves how much of a player they are. And I hate players. Why? Because they get all the fun, whereas people like me, don't get any. Hehe! Bitter talaga eh no?

It's just that for me, feelings, especially the romantic kind, are not something to be played at. I don't think anyone would argue that the consequences can be really destructively painful once we toy around with other people's feelings. Much so when they deserve to be treated better.

But, like what they say, "Kung ano ang bawal, yun ang masarap.." eventhough in the end, we all know it's going to be all pain. "Play with fire and you'll get burned.."

Quick Thoughts