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Saturday, November 14, 2009

It Was... 1941 when Lady Day, otherwise known as Billie Holiday, recorded her version of "Georgia on My Mind".

More than 68 years later, her music reverberates anew in our room with our latest acquisition... TEAC's SL-D910 CD Clock Radio, from SM Appliance Center in SM City North EDSA. 12-months to pay with ZERO interest.

TEAC's SL-D910 CD Clock Radio
It was love at first sight for me and my wife... we love it!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Finally, Closure...

It was about two years ago (I think) when I first heard the news from my wife's friend, Jen. I didn't believe her at that time because I have not read or heard anything about it anywhere.

What bothered me though was that, due to budgetary constraints, I have missed out on one of their CDs. I'm thinking now that that may have also been one of the reasons why I was having a hard time believing the sad news.

That was until tonight...

Earlier this evening, my wife and I were at SM City Manila having dinner. Since I had a little extra cash with me, I was thinking what I could buy myself. Then I remembered... that album I missed.

So, after dinner, I told my wife I wanted to go to Odyssey (the record bar). She told me to go ahead and she'll wait for me at Papemelroti.

I tried to look around the store for the album on my own. Then, I realized that I was already taking too much time so I asked the sales lady if they had it. Unfortunately, she told me they don't have it anymore.

Defeated, I got out of the store and met with my wife at the store she was in.

We were about to head for home when I remembered that there was another record bar inside the SM Department Store. Coincidentally, she also saw some Christmas wares that she wanted to check out.

I approached the sales lady and asked (again) if they had the album. She nodded almost instantly and hurriedly went to one of the racks behind her.

Then, she handed over to me a bunch of CDs...

I've already got this one...

this one too...

aaahhh... THIS ONE!

I took it out of its plastic cocoon as soon as I got home and popped it into the player.

Then I went online... to look for proof... for closure...

And this is what I found:

By Pablo Tariman
First Posted 12:42:00 02/05/2007

Filed Under: Arts, Culture & Entertainment
THE SAN MIGUEL Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorale are dead.

Late last month, instrumentalists of the only corporate-supported orchestra in the country were summoned one by one by the big bosses who informed them of the non-renewal of their contracts. Same thing happened to the members of the San Miguel Chorale.

Many of the orchestra and chorale members did not get separation pay. It’s not known what happened to Ryan Cayabyab, the executive and artistic director of the San Miguel Foundation for the Performing Arts.

Insiders say that San Miguel Corp., the biggest food and beverage company in Southeast Asia, was “more inclined” to support basketball. San Miguel has four basketball teams in the professional league - San Miguel, Ginebra, Coca-cola and Purefoods.

The latest income statement by San Miguel shows the conglomerate in the utmost pink of health. In November, it reported that its nine-month net income grew 18 percent, to P6.17 billion from P5.22 billion in the same period last year, boosted by its strong local and international beer operations and strong sales by its Australian dairy unit, National Foods Ltd.

Both founded in 2001, the highly promising San Miguel Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorale were suddenly disbanded while no one was looking. No one is expected to drink to that.

It's on Track 9 now... just wonderful.

The organization may now be gone, but I'm sure the men and women that comprised it are still very much around. You people are the best! If any one of you guys happen to drop by here, please do leave a word or two. I'd very much like to hear from you.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

A Day to Remember

I wrote this yesterday while earnestly waiting and hoping for the rain to stop...

Tropical Storm Ondoy (International Code Name Ketsana)

It kept raining last night up to the early hours of this morning, but there wasn’t anything about it that could have warned us of what was to come today.

Heavy rain started to fall at around 9:30 am or so (I was already at the office at the time) and I thought it would last for only a brief moment as rain as hard as that usually does. But I was wrong… very wrong. It lasted for more than six hours non-stop.

It was my first time to see rain falling as hard as that last that long.

I have been told that there’s a section in Araneta Avenue where all the cars left on the street were submerged and that only their roofs were showing!

Sadly, our house was not spared. It’s currently flooded inside to almost knee deep."

Well, the water inside our house would rise to about a meter deep after I wrote that. To see a more detailed version of this entry, please go to my other blog.

Anyway, here are some photos that my good friends Joy Cuales and Francis Casupanan took yesterday. These photos are all taken at the EDSA-Quezon Avenue Area.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Seek and You Shall Find

Angels and Demons... the illustrated Angels and Demons... hmmm... The Da Vinci Code... vaccant space in the middle...

Again, again...

Angels and Demons... illustrated A&D... vaccant space... Da Vinci...

Oh no... this cannot be... again...

Angels and Demons... illustrated... Da Vinci... blank space in the middle... poster of The Lost Symbol above...

This can't be happening! This just can't be happening...


Flashback to roughly 26 hours earlier...

At around 4:00pm, my officemate Lito and I were heading towards Ace Hardware (from the SMX) to buy some supplies for our exhibit. Crossing towards the second building, I saw copies of The Lost Symbol stacked high at Fully Booked's window display and thought to myself "Hey, it's out..."

Since we were going to pass by Fully Booked anyway, I told Lito that I was going to check it out real quick.

We went in and inquired about the price. "P975..." the saleslady said.

I thanked the lady and we got out of the store. At that moment, a war was waging in my mind... "should I or shouldn't I buy the book?"

We proceeded to the hardware store, bought the things we needed, and headed back to SMX. As we were nearing Fully Booked again, Lito asked me if I was going to buy the book... I told him that I was still thinking about it... and think about it I did.

We would go back to the hardware store about an hour and a half later to buy some more stuff. And, quite expectedly, Lito asked me again whether or not I was going to buy the book. Still undecided, I told him that I needed more time to think it over.

I eventually went home without buying it. And it bothered me well into the next day (that was last Wednesday, September 16).


So there I was, at the National Bookstore Quezon Avenue branch last Wednesday night, standing motionless in utter disbelief in front of the Dan Brown display stand for what seemed like forever, scanning the covers of the books on display, thinking to myself that it's impossible for me to not see it.

After several times of looking up and down and left and right at all the books on the stand, I kept noticing the vaccant space at the middle. And, it dawned upon me... "they've been all sold out!"

Taking my chances, I called the attention of a saleslady and asked her if they had copies of The Lost Symbol to which she said what to me at the time were the ugliest words one could utter... "we've ran out".

I thanked the lady and headed down stairs, almost prepared to head for home, defeated.

On the escalator, I thought to myself "there's just got to be one more copy lying around here somewhere..."

And so, upon reaching the ground floor, I rushed to where I thought/know the New Arrivals display was... and... there it was, smacked at the middle of the pile of assorted newly-arrived books... The Lost Symbol!

I hurriedly yanked it off of the display and headed towards the cashier while inspecting it for any defects and damages... there were none.

When it got to my turn at the check out counter, the cashier asked for the supervisor's ID and scanned it along with my book... 20% off!


Friday, August 21, 2009


We went to see Disney's Up earlier today... me, my wife, my son, and our househelp (who has never been in a theater before in her life). Although it wasn't able to get my son's undivided attention, we three grown-ups give it a six thumbs-up.

It's way up there on my list of the best animated movies ever made, closely following Toy Story 1 and 2. The story's great, the animation... well, what else would you expect from Pixar? Even the animated short shown before the movie is highly entertaining!

I'm not going to give a blow-by-blow evaluation here as I can't think of anything to dislike about it... all I'm going to say is GO SEE IT, it's going to be worth your every second and every cent.

Oh, by the way, I almost forgot, this trailer was shown also...

I CAN'T WAIT! Let the countdown to June 18, 2010 begin!

Friday, August 7, 2009

To all you Brits out there...

I don't know how to put this properly as I'm not very knowledgeable about timezones and geography, but this goes out to all of you who use the dd/mm/yy date format who happens to be in the same timezone as England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.

This post will be made public on the 7th of August, 2009 at exactly 12:34 pm BST. As much as I want to post this at exactly 12:34:56 pm BST, I can't, because Blogger doesn't provide for it.

Anyway, this is to mark the moment in your timezone where the time and date would read 12:34:56 07/08/09 (that's 123456789). CHEERS!!! :)

Thanks to Morgan who commented on my original 123456789 post for calling my attention to this. :)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

This Made Me Smile for a Whole Five Minutes

Plus goosbumps!

Wonderful! One of the most beautiful things I've seen in my life! See for yourself...

It's a YouTube vido, by the way. :)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

July 22, 2009 Solar Eclipse

Thanks to my good friend, Arnel, and his trusty infrared filter, I was able to take a couple of photos of the solar eclipse this morning.

I couldn't be any happier. :)

Photo taken in Quezon City, Philippines at around 9:40 to 9:50 am, July 22, 2009.

For more on this, click here.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Goodbye (PST)

I'm very disappointed to find out this morning that one of my favorite websites has gone kaput. At first I thought its owner had become a victim of the worlwide economic crisis and had to give up his site.

However, that was not the case.

As he pointed out in his explanation dated June 9, 2009:

"To my deepest regret I have to inform you that the PST server had a major hardware failure and everything on the hard drive was wiped."

To keep a long story short, because of that, he had to redo the entire site from scratch and decided to give it a new name,

The good thing is MisterMonty and his wonderful site (despite the new name) is still around... and it looks like he's going to be around for a long time.

The sad thing is, all the points/credits I've accumulated before are now gone. Likewise, two of my tutorials were also wiped out.

What's sadder is that there are those who've posted at least one of my tutorials on their sites (particularly my "How to Make a Realistic LCD HDTV in Photoshop" tutorial) and claimed it as their own.

Unfortunately for them, they posted the tutorial with the images/screen captures still referenced to And since photoshoptalent is now gone, so are the screen captures on their sites.

Check these out...

Here are portions of their source codes...
Anyway, because of this, I've decided to post those tutorials here on my blog (give me a few days for that). I didn't do that before out of my respect for MisterMonty and his site. Anyway, I will also be sending the tutorials again to MisterMonty so that he'll be able to put them back up on his new site (that is if he still wants them).

Goodbye photoshoptalent... Long live pxleyes!!!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Third Time's in 3D!

Yes, it's the third installation of the Ice Age franchise... but that's not what I'm hinting at in the title...

It was my son's third time to be in a movie theater. His first one was at the SM Mall of Asia's Imax Theater (Madagascar 2) and the second was just two weeks ago in Trinoma (Transformers 2 - Revenge of the Fallen).

Then, yesterday, it was at Trinoma's Cinema 4... Ice Age 3 - Dawn of the Dinosaurs... IN 3D!

It's quite an experience, and that goes for all of us (myself, my wife, my brother and mother)... with the exception of my son who didn't seem to be impressed with the 3-dimensional magic. But I believe it was because the glasses bothered him (more on this later).

The 3-dimensional trickery was pretty impressive, really.

We were seated at Row "N" (the farthest from the screen, as far as the "ordinary" seating is concerned) and, as soon as the movie started, my wife said "parang ang lapit..." ("it feels so near...").

Take note, the glasses do not have any magnifying qualities. I tried taking the glasses off a few times to see what the images looked like. All I saw were blurry images... or, to be more precise, "double images". But it's nothing like the 3D illusions we have been accustomed to seeing in some children's books (with the cardboard red and blue glasses). It was (almost) void of any visble and distracting misaligned blue and red images.

However, I strongly believe the trick is quite similar since when I looked at the glasses from an angle, I saw traces of very thin red and green films in the lenses. In addition, I think the glasses also have polarizing qualities which separate the images and allow only one set of images to be seen by each eye.

Anyway, the only problem I had with the glasses is that they don't fit very well and kept on sliding down my nose. My son held on to his glasses to keep them in place, but he eventually took them off about two-thirds of the way through the movie.

Text on the sticker reads:
Warning: For in-theatre movie-viewing only.
Glasses do NOT block sunlight. Outdoor use
may be hazardous.
Dolby and the double-D are registered trademarks
of Dolby Laboratories, Inc. Patents Pending

But generally, it was great fun seeing the show pop out of the screen.

As for the movie Ice Age 3... well, much of the characters' comedic antics were really funny (especially Sid and the saber-toothed squirrels Scrat and Scratte). But the story... hmmm...

Three-and-a-half stars out of five.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Free Green Apples for Free

Saw this at the fruits section of the supermarket in SM City Manila...

I have learned to accept the phrase "free gift"... but this one's a bit too pushy!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


I'm pre-scheduling this entry to be posted/made public at exactly 12 hours 34 minutes of July 8, 2009 (local time). I was intending to set a more precise time... unfortunately, the post-scheduling feature on blogger/blogspot doesn't allow for the "seconds" to be set.

Anyway, this is simply to mark something which will never happen again for a really long time.

If you haven't noticed it yet, exactly 56 seconds after this entry goes public (I hope it will do so on time) the time and date will exactly be the 9 consecutive numbers that is this entry's title.

12:34:56 07/08/09

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Presidential Implants

Yes, the President's got breast implants! And yes, I'm talking about GMA.

In this day and age when cosmetic surgery procedures have become as common as circumcision, why am I so surprised to hear about this news?

After initially denying it, Malacañang (in the person of Press Secretary Cerge Remonde and deputy spokeswoman Lorelei Fajardo) has confirmed that the President did undergo a boob job back in the 80s. She would've been in her late 30s or early 40s back then.

Unfortunately, something went wrong. Lumps and abscess were said to have been found on her breast(s) which she have had removed at the Asian Hospital and Medical Center last week "while on a two-day self-quarantine". This eventually led to the leaking of the news of her boob job (no pun intended).

Now, the obvious question that comes with this news is WHY. Why did she have a boob job?

GMA's deputy spokeswoman said it was a "medical necessity".


At this very moment, I'm tuned in to ABS-CBN's TV Patrol and it's reporting on this very issue.


The latest development? The NBI is now conducting an investigation, apparently to find out WHO it was that leaked the news.

Seriously, the President had a boob job?!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009


I went to the National Library this morning to claim my "Certificate of Copyright Registration and Deposit" (for my ambigram design). Having dealt with a handful of Government Offices in the past, I am quite surprised and delighted that the entire registration process was a breeze, even if I had to wait for a month (from the time of my application) to get my certificate.

Disregarding the month-long processing time, the whole process took only less than an hour. That includes the submission of the documents, paying the dues (P200.00), and claiming the certificate. There were no lines, no "surprise" requirements and fees, no repeated frustrating trips to the office, none.

To each and everyone of you at the National Library's Copyright Section, I give you my two thumbs up and a BIG heartfelt thanks!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Autobots, Roll Out!

I went to see Transformers (Revenge of the Fallen) yesterday with my wife, son, and mother at Trinoma.

Summing it all up, I enjoyed it. My wife liked it quite a bit (despite not being a fan of robots), and so did my 63-year-old mother. My three-and-a-half-year-old son... well... he fell asleep about halfway through the movie.

Here's what I liked about the movie...

  • Megan Fox (I know this is rather unfair. We all know the main reason why many people... errm, men like her, it's definitely NOT because of her acting. And Wheelie couldn't have made the point any clearer!)
  • Shia LaBeouf
  • the giant effing robots especially Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Devastator, the "Ancestors", Megatron, Demolisher, Sideswipe (he deserves more screen time), and (I-didn't-expect-liking-him-but-I-did) Jetfire
  • the ONLY true comic refief (in my opinion), Wheelie
  • Optimus Prime not being the ultra "clean" goody-two-shoes anymore
  • the voices of Optimus Prime, Soundwave, Jetfire, Megatron, and the Fallen

My dislikes:

  • some of the main robot characters in the first movie were pushed to the sidelines (ending up as sort of extras)
  • many robots were needlessly added (including the twins... I loved Wheelie though)
  • was it just me or did the movie score also take a back seat?
  • how the "Matrix of Leadership" worked (C-H-E-E-S-Y-!)
  • the three sisters (motorcycles)
  • a few cheesy lines here and there

Anyway, the story... well, it was fine. It was DEFINITELY NOT a five-star two-thumbs-up kind of thing, but it was generally ok. But really, for me it all came crumbling down with the Matrix-of-Leadership bullcrap.

Some notable scenes - in no particular order, I'll list them as they come into mind (contains spoilers, stop reading if you don't want me spoiling the movie for ya):

  • transformation/union of Devastator
  • Devastator climbing to the top of the pyramid
  • chopper flying above Mikaela as she was crying over Sam
  • union of Optimus and Jetfire
  • Soundwave scenes
  • the forest scene
  • chopper dropping Optimus at the airbase
  • destruction of the aircraft carrier
  • Demolishor scenes
  • Sideswipe scenes

One more thing I'd like to mention, I like what they did to Jetfire. I can still remember what I thought of him in G1... a pushover. He's now got my respect... too bad he had to go.

My personal rating... four out of five stars (largely due to the awesome effects and nostalgic quality). There's a 50/50 possibility that I'll change my mind on some of these if I would watch the film again.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Guess Who Wrote This...

Read this and try to guess who wrote it:


Now the black foul deed is out.

Absolute power—not just decree making power—but ABSOLUTE UNLIMITED POWER was after all the final objective.

This was the ultimate sordid plan after all.

Blacken Marcos. Destroy him with propaganda. Even having won the elections push him out from the beginning with charges of hidden wealth and massive fraud.

Falsehoods and fabrications to immobilize him from using the military power under him.

Simple scenario enough.

Then drive him out or kidnap him from Malacañang Palace, the seat of power.

Hidden wealth, torture, insurgency.

Thrive after grabbing power to steal both government and private wealth.

So today the unabated looting of both public and private wealth, each one pointing to the other as the culprit.

Looting by the rich and powerful. Looting by men in uniform. Looting by hoodlums. Looting by the poor.

For the dictator who is no less a looter protects her kind.

The dictator is in full control and the dictator has unsatiated appetite not only for private vengeance but for sheer viciousness and masochism--inflicting pain on others to soothe her poor troubled mind and conscience.

Cry my beloved people. So easily and quickly did we lose the freedom, justice and dignity or self respect for which so many millions of our lives had been sacrificed.

Now we must war again against the monster who imposes slavery anew.

Death, yes—perhaps.


I cry for my people and country.

Here's part of the original document, maybe you can recognize the handwriting:

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Before there was Transformers, there was Diaclone...

And, I was fortunate enough to own one. :) AND, moreso, to still have it with me after 24 years and with everything still intact!

As you will probably notice in one of the pictures, there's a price tag stuck somwhere on its box that has the figure "70.00" printed on it. I can't say for certain if that was its selling price back in 1985 but it's possible since G.I. Joe figures were sold for only 45 to 60 pesos at the time, and now they're selling for like what... 300? 400 pesos?

Notice that the miniature guy is sitting
inside the car in the above photo.

Anyway, I believe this guy's name in the G1 Transformers series is "Tracks", an Autobot, and he transforms into a Chevy Corvette. He's colored blue in the Tranformers, by the way.

From Wikipedia:

Diaclone was a toyline by Takara Toys launched in 1980. It consisted of transforming vehicles and robots piloted by miniature, magnet-shoed figures spun off from the prior Microman toy line that were in turn called an Inch-Man.

The toys in the 1980 line were designed by future Macross designers Shoji Kawamori and Kazutaka Miyatake (both contracted from Studio Nue), who designed the mecha and the figures respectively. Unlike Microman, which featured "full-scale" toys of its 10 centimeter tall alien cyborgs, the figures in Diaclone represented full-sized human (and enemy alien Waruder) pilots, and were in approximately 1/60th scale.

In 1982, the line later featured the Car-Robots set of transforming robot toys, invented by Koujin Ohno with some initial designs by Kawamori and others. While the original series featured fanciful robots and vehicles, Car-Robots added the feature of the robots being able to disguise themselves as various late 20th century-era contemporary vehicles. In 1984, Hasbro licensed the Car-Robots toyline along with the Microman "Micro Change" toyline from Takara and merged the two series of toys to create the Transformers. Most of the original Autobot vehicle-based characters came from the Car-Robots set of Diaclone robots. Other Transformers characters that came from the Diaclone line included the Dinobots, Insecticons (from the enemy Waruder toys), the Decepticon planes (originally from 2 "JetRobo" toys, produced in the colors of future Decepticons Starscream and Thundercracker) and the Constructicons, who also came from the Car-Robots set. The Constructicons came from near the end of the series, at which point Takara was starting to abandon the Inch-Man pilot figures and being limited to the 1/60th scale. The 6 TrainRobo were also produced in the same sub-line as the Constructicons, but would only become Transformers (as the Trainbots) in Japan's 1987 line.

Takara eventually discontinued the Diaclone and Microman toylines in 1985 in favor of the more successful Transformers rebranding.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

How I Wish I Could Have Caught This on Tape

Kids cry. Naturally. Some kids cry adorably, while some... well... annoyingly.

This afternoon, while working on something, my wife heard our three-and-a-half year old son, Magnus (who was at a neighbor's house playing with some kids), cry the annoying type of cry (yeah, the one that sounds like a broken fire engine siren ). Since he was with our trusted helper who's been very good at taking care of him, and knowing that he can at times be quite an actor, my wife didn't pay it much attention.

When the duo came back home a couple of hours later, my wife asked our helper why he cried. Turns out, the kids, including our son, were playing with this one ball and Magnus wanted to keep the ball for himself.

After giving Magnus a lecture on sharing and telling him that the ball wasn't his, my wife told him: "I don't like to hear you cry like that... don't do that again, okay? Only babies cry like that."

"I'm not a baby..." he said, "I'm Magnus."

"Yes, you're not a baby anymore..." my wife stressed, "...that's why you shouldn't cry like that. You're a big boy now."

"I'm not a big boy, I'm a small boy... I can't reach, see?"

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Rally in Makati

It's been quite a while since we last had a "big one". As a matter of fact, I can't remember when the last "big one" was or what it was all about.

If the news is to be believed, there's going to be one tomorrow, in Makati, starting at 4:00pm to protest against the House-approved constituent assembly to amend the Constitution. Sounds exciting.

But, then again, there hasn't been one (big or small) that has really made an impact lately... and by lately I mean five-or-so-years.

For every rally/protest that has been held over those five-or-so years, there'd been talks (or rumors, if you may) about the participants/protesters being "hakot" or "hired". True or not, protests held over those years seem to lack the "umph" factor. Yes, the protests are shown on the news, they even become front page headlines on the next day's papers. But give it a couple more days, it's as if nothing had ever happened.

There's one group who started their protest early this evening at the Welcome Rotonda, encouraging motorists to blow their horns and join in the noise barrage. Sad thing is, when I passed by the area on my way home from work, no one seems to be taking them seriously and the only people making the noise are the protesters themselves.

Let's see what happens tomorrow.

Update: June 10, 2009 - Some estimate 21,000 people participated in the rally, while some say only 6,000 did.

Thieves From Within, Ghost in the Machine

ATM Usage Safety Tips
ATM Usage Safety Tips
Ok, so you've been doing all that... and so far you haven't had any problems except, probably, for a few times when the darn machine ate up your card or went offline when you needed it most.

But now, it seems, those safety guidlines will no longer be enough to keep you safe.

I know posting about this may/could cause panic to some people but, really, my only purpose for posting this is to share the information. Quoting from the 80s G.I. Joe cartoon... "...knowing is half the battle".

I've read a news article early this morning (on Yahoo) about a malware that's infecting Automated Teller Machines (ATMs). The article wasn't specific in telling which country's ATMs have been infected. However, it did mention "Eastern Europe" and "outside of Eastern Europe". Hmmm...

What the malware does is this... when an ATM card is fed into the machine, the malware records the information stored in the card's magnetic strip... including the PIN. Then, with the use of a "master control card", the thief can either print the collected data using the ATM's receipt issuing system OR store the collected data in his/her "master control card".

Experts working on the malware said that the malware has no networking capabilities yet. However, there is the danger of it being engineered into a worm which will enable it to spread through ATM networks.

Authorities are suspecting that the malware was either done (and planted) by an industry "insider" or by someone who was able to pick the lock(s) of ATM(s). This is because the malware can only be installed on ATMs by someone who has the capability of gaining direct access to the ATMs internal hardware.

By the way, the malware samples gathered in March (2009) by SpiderLabs and Sophos are said to be designed to target machines made by Diebold.

Update: June 26, 2009 - This was reported on ABS-CBN's TV Patrol tonight.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Angels & Demons... the Verdict...

Everyone I know who's seen both Da Vinci and Angels has been telling me that Angels is a better movie than Da Vinci (which I've been hoping will be the case). But, I kept my expectations at bay for fear of getting disappointed come the time I would go and see it...

And saw it we did, my wife and I, yesterday, at Trinoma. Well, I couldn't agree more that it is (by far) a lot better than Da Vinci, despite the slight changes in the story.

The musical score, the cinematography, the effects... all very nice. The acting was pretty good too, though I got a bit bothered by Ewan's... I don't know, he seemed a bit stiff and unnatural.

The catchphrases were pretty good (IMO)... as a matter of fact I got a couple stuck on my mind (though they may not be 100% correct):

"If you're going to write about us, and surely you will write about us... be gentle."

"Religion is flawed, and that's because MEN are flawed..."

I'm giving it 4 out of 5 stars.

By the way, does anybody know why they changed the fifth brand/ambigram???

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Bumaligtad Pa Man Ang Mundo (Even If The World Would Turn Upside Down)...

Finally, after more than a month of being just a rough sketch/idea on a page of my notebook (the spring-bound paper kind), I got to refine it digitally last night. And here it is, in .png format and with transparent background, for all you patriots out there to download/copy and place on your blogs/websites (that is if you like it as much as I do, hehehe).

Bumaligtad Pa Man Ang Mundo, Pilipino Ako!

If you should so desire, you are very much welcome to use it whichever way you like as long as it's for your PERSONAL and/or NON-COMMERCIAL USE.

For anyone interested in using the design commercially, just leave me a comment. By the way, make sure to provide your email address when you do so that I can get back to you. Thanks. :)

I would VERY MUCH appreciate it if you'd provide a backlink to this particular post whenever and wherever your usage of the design permits. The link of this particular post is:

It's up to you how you're going to use the link with the image... use it to make an image link or put the link somewhere near the image... as I've said, it's all up to you. I'm not asking much, am I? I would appreciate it a great lot also if you'd also leave a few words of love.

I've also posted a 1024 x 768 desktop wallpaper bearing this design on my flickr account if you're interested.

Bumaligtad Pa Man Ang Mundo, Pilipino Ako!

By the way, if you haven't noticed it yet, the sentence "Pilipino Ako!" is an ambigram... turn it upside down or right-side-up, it'll say the same thing.

Update 1: May 26, 2009 - Brought the design to the National Library for copyright registration.

Update 2: June 6, 2009 - Mugs bearing the ambigram design will soon be available at SugarPrints.

Update 3: June 17, 2009 - "Pilipino Ako!" Ambigram Mugs and Memo Pads now available at SugarPrints!

Update 3: June 24, 2009 - "Pilipino Ako! Car Decals now available at SugarPrints!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Buy Any Fern And... D'oh!

I first saw a sign, like the one pictured above, about a month or so ago somewhere near the Elliptical Road.

Dumbfounded, I struggled to make sense out of the sign(s)… “U-turn Slot” translates to “Likuan U” in Filipino… check… “Likuan U” sounds like “Lee Kuan Yew”… check…

But still, it didn’t make any sense. I wondered, “is it really necessary to translate ‘U-turn Slot’ into Filipino?”

I ended up thinking that some wisecrack may have put it up as a sort of joke.

I saw the sign again at the U-turn slot near Trinoma last Sunday (pictured above) and, to silence my questioning mind, I turned to Google for insights.

So far, everything I’ve read points to the MMDA (itself) as the “culprit”, and most are saying that the (ridiculous) signs are part of Mr. Bayani Fernando’s campaign/puro paganda, er... propaganda for the 2010 Presidential Elections.

So, what does “Lee Kuan Yew” have to do with Mr. Fernando? Well, according to what I’ve read, the man idolizes Lee Kuan Yew, the former Prime Minister of Singapore who is often credited with being the architect of Singapore’s present prosperity.

If all these are true... *Place mile-long sigh here*

Friday, April 24, 2009

My first time…

"I’ll try anything and everything at least once, and if I like it I’ll do it again.”

Such is my philosophy in life, most especially when it comes to food. And today, I got to try something for the very first time, and I’m very happy about it.

I remember, as a kid, playing with an insect that we (my cousins and myself) called “suksok lupa” (earth borer). It’s about an inch long (though, according to Wikipedia it can grow up to 2 inches long), primarily brown-colored, and very powerful.

Young as I was at the time, I remember not being able to keep one in my hand no matter how tightly I held on to it. It somehow always manages to dig its way out of my hand. It has these powerful forelimbs which it uses as sort of anchors to pull its body through tight spaces (in this case, my clenched hand).

I never bothered finding out what it’s really called, and so I grew up knowing the insect by the name we called it (“suksok lupa”).

Today, at the office, my boss asked us one by one if we eat insects. Thinking that he just had an altercation with someone, I just smiled at him and took him for joking.

Turns out, he was serious. He brought out his baon (packed lunch) and showed us the dead bugs with tomatoes and onions, all turned brown with soy sauce. Adobong Kamaru, he said it was called. My mind, however, was yelling “Suksok lupa!”

I’ve heard so much about insects being served on the dining table just as I’ve seen so many videos about it (especially on documentaries and on Fear Factor). But contrary to the usual reaction that many people get with this sort of thing, I always find myself wanting very much to try it, with my mouth watering.

“This is my chance!” I thought to myself.

Excited, I asked him if I can taste it. “That’s why I brought it,” he said “I wanted you guys to taste it.”

I suppose he wanted to assure us that it’s safe, he picked up a couple with his fingers, put them in his mouth and chewed.

Without a moment’s thought, I followed.

Most of you probably won’t believe me but it was Y-U-M-M-Y! It’s WONDERFUL!!! It tasted like kilawin, actually (to me, at least).

For the purpose of blogging about it, I did a quick research on the proper name of the bug.

Using “kamaru” as the keyword in my search (on Google), at first, didn’t get me anything pertaining to the insect. I didn’t try “suksok lupa” as I was sure it’s not going to do me any good (well, I tried it just now and I was right). And so, I added the word “Kapampangan” and… voila!

Mole Cricket… that’s how they’re called in English (if you’ll ask me, I think they look more like tiny lobsters than crickets).

This experience surely has changed the way I look at and think of these bugs…

As they say in Kapampangan…

Subukan mu at ng kanyaman! (“Try it, it’s delicious!”)

Note: If you want to try it, this is the styro that the yummy treat came in... hope the contact information is legible.


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