Thursday, April 30, 2009


nothing prevented us from conquering this ancient marvel during our trip to mao's country in january. not even frost bites! the trek to the walls in mutianyu was the main highlight of our quick stop in beijing. although we've seen the forbidden city and temple of heavens, the great wall was by far the one place we all wanted to see. thanks to cath who made sure that our driver john would bring us to mutianyu rather than the tourist-infested badaling section.

well, as all of us know, the great wall is a simple fortification, not at all spectacular in terms of design and grandeur. but what it lacks in design, it makes up on history, extent and its overall significance in chinese heritage. from our dynamic discussions during my social studies class back in 2nd year high school (under the enigmatic ma'am dolores tabura), shih huang ti's engineering feat is really a must-visit. it's one of the seven wonders of the medieval world, and in july 2007, it was also included in the new seven wonders of the world.

we got an english-speaking drive (john) for a breezier trip to the great wall. he brought us to a resto near the walls, which served us fresh fish, altogether a nice but very expensive lunch. we then headed to mutianyu. as it was freezing, i added anothe jacket to my already 4 layered outfit. cathy's hands were already turning violet after applying petroleum jelly for some warmth. mark had his baul-fresh coat. cable car brought us to the top of the mutianyu walls. from there, we walked all the way to the end of the passable section, which are open to tourists. but cathy's old age prevented her from hiking the hundred steps up to the last watchtower of this section.

all in all, this was really a great trip. it could've been better had we got there after the bitter winter. but i guess, it's our way of surprising ourselves - that we can survive frigid atmosphere and still enjoy a trip to a foreign land. next stop, please.


after a whole lot of dilly-dallying, i decided to join the gang for tonight's trip to naga city. liezl, izhi and utoy won't join us anymore as it'll be a lot more difficult if we have with us kids. i feel bad for utoy coz he's looking forward to this trip and he badly wants to hit the beach before the summer's over.

i guess not even the threat of 3 low pressure areas will prevent us from trying our luck and conquer caramoan and cwc. i just hope that we won't get stranded on the road, especially as the national highway between quezon and the camarines provinces are being repaired.

if any of these low pressure areas become tropical depression or storm, we'll first go to cwc and then when the storm goes up north, we'll proceed to caramoan. crossing fingers! but this will also mean that summer will be officially over, so another blow to utoy's 2009 summer. so sorry.

Monday, April 27, 2009


"Choose Life. Choose a job. Choose a career. Choose a family. Choose a fucking big television, choose washing machines, cars, compact disc players and electrical tin openers. Choose good health, low cholesterol and dental insurance. Choose fixed interest mortgage repayments. Choose a starter home. Choose your friends. Choose leisurewear and matching luggage. Choose a three-piece suite on hire purchase in a range of fucking fabrics. Choose DIY and wondering who the fuck you are on Sunday morning. Choose sitting on that couch watching mind-numbing, spirit-crushing game shows, stuffing fucking junk food into your mouth. Choose rotting away at the end of it all, pissing your last in a miserable home, nothing more than an embarrassment to the selfish, fucked up brats you spawned to replace yourselves. Choose your future. Choose life . . . But why would I want to do a thing like that? I chose not to choose life. I chose somethin' else. And the reasons? There are no reasons. Who needs reasons when you've got heroin?" [Watch video]


another epidemic. this time it's called swine flu.

life really becomes harder each time. they say that each generation faces respective bouts of setbacks, may it be economic turmoil, war, pandemic, terrorism and/or social unrest... or worse, a combination of at least 2 of these. not too long ago, we were hit by th SARS scare. of course, with the ongoing economic meltdown, the threat of another global problem makes things even worse, as a whole country can standstill for a prolonged period of time due to the imminent threat of a full-blown pandemic. articles say that this started in mexico and the united states. as of now, cases have been reported in countries such as new zealand and spain among others.

surgical masks are a commodity once again, while flu vaccines becomes highly important even more. quarantine will be a byword, but they say that prevention starts at frequent hand washing with soap and sanitizing of the living quarters. i just hope that local authorities are ready and prepared to take on this nasty epidemic if and when swine flu enters the philippines.

last i heard, the philippines doesn't have any technological equipment to test whether a patient contracted H1N1 virus or just simple influenza. we still need to send the sample to either australia or u.s. for accurate testing. oh my... it's just another third world way of living.

Thursday, April 23, 2009


it took 3 months, but finally, the pics are here.
as mentioned in my previous entry, by staying in beijing downtown backpackers hostel, we were able to experience the very essence of beijing life. hutongs are the traditional neighborhoods in beijing, dating back to china's yuan dynasty. beijing is a cosmopolitan city, but the presence and our short stay in one of the remaining hutongs (and of course the ancient historical sites) made our stay more enjoyable and fulfilling. just across the inn, we were able to sample chinese streetfoods that cost 1 rmb per stick.
thanks to cathy's financial concerns, we were able to book a room at beijing backpackers - a haven for tourists like me that long for simple, yet comfortable amenities. on top of that, they served a nice american breakfast. overall, the feel and ambience of this backpackers inn is superb. if ever i'll go back to beijing, i'll stay here again.


Along the way you bump into people who make a dent on your life. Some people get struck by lightning. Some are born to sit by a river. Some have an ear for music. Some are artists. Some swim the English Channel. Some know buttons. Some know Shakespeare. Some are mothers. And some people can dance.

- Benjamin Button

i almost completely forgot to watch this movie, i guess another sign of aging! normally, immediately after buying any dvd from mai-mai, i'd have it nailed asap. but this one, counted weeks before being played. anyhow...

glad that i watched it. although it was really long (the movie's main negative point according to critics), i enjoyed every minute of it. the thought of living your life backwards, instead of growing old as years pass, you get younger and younger, is thought-provoking and was beautifully tracked in the movie. while it's an epic in its own right, the movie was simple, yet poses serious questions on life and death. what kept me glued to this is the feeling that while many always say that you should pursue whatever you want in life, there comes a moment that would just prevent you from doing so... like when benjamin decided to leave his family to live alone, as he can't allow the fact that daisy would take care of two babies in the near future. up to this moment, i can still imagine that particular scene... brad pitt's emotionless face and cate blanchett's luminous questioning of "where are you going and why". all in all, it's all about the celebration of life. life as a sum of all experiences, good or bad choices, luck, fate, missed chances, opportunities taken, love, family and the sense of being one's self.

scenes in the 20s, 30s and 40s were impeccably mounted. the film's visual effects and other technical aspects were superb. cate blanchett was stunning and brad pitt was ok, hehehe! i would've wanted to see other actors like daniel day lewis or clive owen in the title role, but i guess brad pitt's good looks help the movie better in presenting a younger version of him. although the way daisy told caroline about her real father was a throwback to cliche pinoy-style storytelling, the movie was successful in enveloping the third main character of the movie, the city of new orleans.

Saturday, April 4, 2009


after our gruelling but enjoyable trek of the great wall of china at mutianyu, we headed to this temple - the temple of heaven. a popular park for taichi and other meditations, this complex is also one of china's magnificent architectural sites. according to unesco:
"a masterpiece of architecture and landscape design which simply and graphically
illustrates a cosmogony of great importance for the evolution of one of the
world’s great civilizations..." as the "symbolic layout and design of the Temple
of Heaven had a profound influence on architecture and planning in the Far East
over many centuries."
at first, both cathy and mark didn't want to go in due to ticket fees, but of course, i won't let the bitter cold spoil my historical walking tour of then freezing china. and besides, if we don't go in, the whole trip would a little bit be pointless.


it's already april and the summer heat is on. but back in january this year, we braved the piercing winter of china, when we flew to shanghai and took the train from there to beijing. cathy and i were planning to squeeze in everything in a single day in beijing because we wanted to see the terracotta warriors in xian. but of course, due to the bitter cold and cathy's financial concerns, we decided to call off our trip to xian. my so-called mantra when traveling is to maximize our stay and see to it that we stop on all possible stops, even if it calls for additional expense. so instead of going to xian, our second day in beijing was spent on exploring the vast (literally!) and historic grounds of the forbidden city. i'm glad that we didn't go to xian. we had ample time to walk on this cheng's (walled city) palatial architecture and explore all surviving buildings and marvel at china's rich heritage. we entered the forbidden city at around 9 am and finished around lunchtime. and even if the winter air is freezing our noses and hands... i was still pushing everyone to look around and take pictures! nice!


"There what it takes to be.
Then we shall so be it because it is.
To do or not to is in the what,
now or what else.
Without which there never to you!"

- words of wisdom from
Senator Lito Lapid aka Leon Guerrero


linis ng mailbox. ito ang isa sa mga inatupag ko ngayong sabado. daming forwarded messages na kailangan nang mag-goodbye, pero marami rin naman ang katuwa. at kahit nabasa mo na dati... at napahagalpak ka na sa tawa, nakatatawa pa rin 'pag binalikan mo, tulad ng mga ito:

'dear te, dear te, dear te!!!'

-sigaw ni Anabelle Rama kay Lorin at Venice (mga anak ni Rofa) habang naglalaro ng tubig sa kanal.
============ ========= ========= ========= ========= ==

Pulubi: Palimos po ng cake.
Ale: Aba, sosyal ka ah! Namalimos ka lang, gusto mo pang cake.. eto pandesal!
Pulubi: Duh! Ate?! Bday ko kaya today?!?
============ ========= ========= ========= ========= ==
ANAK: Tay mag-ingat kayo sa DANKTRAK!.
TATAY: ano ung danktrak?
ANAK: Yunn pong trak na 10 ang gulong na karga buhangin.
TATAY: Tanga inde danktrak un...TEN MILLER!!!
============ ========= ========= ========= ========= ====
BOY: Wala akong kwentang anak para sa inyo! Lahat ng ginagawa ko puro mali! Lagi nalang ako mali!!! Di 'nyo na ako mahal!
AMA: Nagkakamali ka anak.
BOY: Shet! Mali na naman ako!!!
============ ========= ========= ========= ========= ====
Nanay: Ang lakas mo kumain pero di ka mautusan. Ang kapal mo!
Anak: Kapag yung baboy natin mlakas kumain, natutuwa ka. Sino ba talaga ang anak mo, ako o ung baboy? Umayos ka Nay! Wag ganun!
============ ========= ========= ========= ========= ====
Magsyota naglalakad sa park:

GF: Hon, ihi muna ako
BF: Dyan ka nalang sa damuhan...
Habang umiihi, kinapkap ni BF ang legs ni GF nang may mahawakan syang mahaba sa gitna nito...
BF: Anak ng?! Bading ka ba o nagpalit na ng kasarian??
GF: Sira! Nagpalit lang ako ng desisyon. Tumatae na ako.
============ ========= ========= ========= ========= ====
(Sa loob ng Mall)

GUY: Love, yan ang dati kong girlfriend.
Jowa: Ang pangit pangit naman!
GUY: Wala akong magagawa, yan talaga ang weakness ko ever since...
============ ========= ========= ========= ========= ====
NARS: doc, bat tinanggihan nyo yung pasyente?
DR: alin, yung bakla?
NARS: opo. Baka sabihin namimili tayo, porket bading siya.
DR: ano naman raraspahin ko sa kanya?
inspiring quote of the day:
"hindi ako tamad. Hindi ko lang alam kung saan ko ibubuhos kasipagan ko."
TEACHER: okay class our lesson for today is science. What is science?
PEDRO: ako ma'am! Ako ma'am!
TEACHER: okay Pedro, what is science?
PEDRO: science is our lesson for today.
AMO: inday, paalisin mo nga yung pulubi sa labas ng bahay.
(nilabas ni Inday)
INDAY: off you go! Under no circumstance this house would relent to such unabashed display of vagrant destitution!
PULUBI: oh! I'm so ashamed! Such a mansion of social climbing freaks!
(nakakuha na ng katapat si Inday!)
NOSEBLEED!!! .hehehe
BOB: nakakamagkano ka sa 1 araw?
PULUBI: nag-uumpisa kasi ako ng 8am. Ngayon 9am na. naka 80 na ko.
BOB: hindi din masama noh? Ano mabibili mo niyan?
PULUBI: pwede na tong isang espresso macchiato sa starbucks!
DOC: umubo ka!
PEDRO: ho! Ho! Ho!
DOC: ubo pa!
PEDRO: ho! Ho! Ho!
DOC: okay.
PEDRO: ano po ba sakit ko doc?
DOC: may ubo ka.
Why God invented menopause:
Once upon a time, a 70 year old woman gave birth.
BISITA: pwedeng makita ang baby mo?
MOM: mamaya na.
30 minutes after.
BISITA: pwede na bang makita?
MOM: oo, pero hintay muna tayo na umiyak kasi nakalimutan ko kung saan ko linagay.
Sexy girl nagkukumpisal:
PARI: iha, ano ang iyong ikukumpisal?
SEXY: father, pag nakakarinig po ako ng lalaking nagmumura di ko mapigilan sarili ko na yayain siya magsex!
PARI: 'tang ina! Di nga?
TEACHER: ano ang pambansang ibon?
BOY: chicken?
TEACHER: hindi! kulay brown ito!
BOY: fried chicken!
TEACHER: hindi! mas maliit ito sa chicken.
BOY: knorr chicken cubes!
TEACHER: get out!
when your lips are silent and your eyes are closed and your ears are deaf. It only means one thing. May discount ka sa jeep. Disabled ka 'tol, disabled!
============ =
Divorced father: anak pag-uwi mo bigay mo sa nanay mo itong cheke at sabihin mo 18 yrs old ka na, huling cheke na makukuha niya for child support tapos tignan mo kung ano ang expression ng face niya.
Anak: mom, sabi ni dad bigay ko daw sayo itong cheke, last support na niya ito sakin kasi 18 na ako. Pagkatapos tignan ko daw expression ng face mo.
Mom: sa susunod na pagbisita mo sa kanya paki sabi salamat sa suporta kahit di mo siya tatay! Pagkatapos tignan mo expression ng face niya!
TEACHER: mga bata, alam niyo ba na ang bawat butil ng palay ay galing sa dugo't pawis ng mga magsasaka?
MGA BATA: eeewwww!
BOY: is this your first time?
GIRL: (angrily) oo naman noh. You guys talaga. So kuleeet! Always asking me the same question. Paulit-ulit. Hmp!
magsyota sa motel.
BF: alam mo love, ikaw ang first girl na dinala ko dito.
GF: sinungaling. Sabi nila lagi ka dito!
BF: oo, pero ikaw lang talaga ang girl!
PARI: halika sa sulok
MADRE: bakit po?
PARI: sara mo pinto.
MADRE: wag po!
PARI: patayin mo ilaw!
MADRE: diyos ko po!
PARI: tamo rosary ko. Glow in the dark!
why was white chocolate invented? So little black kids could have dirty faces too!
isang araw sa may tindahan.
PULUBI: palimos po.
TINDERO: wala po, patawad.
PULUBI: sige na po, kahit magkano.
TINDERO: sya sige! Eto, dos.
PULUBI: salamat po ng marami. Isang Malboro nga po, yung menthol.
TITSER: bat ka na-late?
EDWARD: nawalan ho kasi ng 500 yung lalaki.
TITSER: tinulungan mo siyang maghanap?
EDWARD: hindi po, tinapakan ko lang hanggang umalis siya.
sabi nung friend ko, nakakalaki daw ng tiyan ang beer. Kasi noon minsan nalasing siya, nabuntis siya!
a thirsty city girl went to a barrio
GIRL: where galing your water manong?
MATANDA: sa ilog ineng.
GIRL: ha? You drink that water manong?
MATANDA: duhhh! Why, sa syudad ba chine-chew?
NOEL: ipapangalan ko sa aking anak " LEON " baliktad ng Noel.
NINO: sa akin ONIN baliktad ng NINO.
TOTO: wag niyo akong maisali-sali dyan sa usapan niyo!
MR: hon promise simula ngayon, iiwan ko na ang mga kabit ko.
MRS: wow. Thank you love. Ako naman, I promise, ang susunod nating anak, ikaw na ang ama. Promise talaga.
NUN: mother! I was raped. What shall I do?
Mother SUPERIOR: here, take this calamansi.
NUN: will this ease the pain?
Mother SUPERIOR: sipsipin mo! Nang mawala ngiti sa mukha mo, gaga!
ATE: pabili ng pilis.
TINDERA: ano po?
A: pilis po!
T: ha? Dilis?
A: pilis po.
T: ano? Philip?
A: pilis nga! Yung nudols.
sa sabungan, walang entrance fee ang may dalang panabong. Si Juan para makalibre pumasok may dalang inahin.
BANTAY: [sinita si Juan] ano yan?
JUAN: [galit pa!] manok!
BANTAY: alam ko, eh bakit inahin?
JUAN: may laban ang mister niya, siyempre moral support bobo!
sa loob ng mall....
GUY: love, yan ang dati kong girlfriend.
JOWA: ang pangit pangit naman!
GUY: wala akong magagawa, yan talaga ang weakness ko ever since.
GF: magaling! At sino tong baby na nagtext sayo?
BF: ah eh kumpare ko yun! Lalake yun! Baby lang palayaw.
GF: oh eto replyan mo. Hindi daw kayo tuloy at may mens daw ang tarantado!
PEDRO: niloko ko yung tindera kanina.
JUAN: paano mo naman niloko yung tindera?
PEDRO: nagpaload ako eh wala naman akong celfon. '
what's worse than finding a worm in the apple you are eating? pag nakita mong kalahati na lang ang worm.
Overheard from a girl na galit sa kararating na boyfriend sa starbucks:
GIRL: my God, you're so late. Where did you . . . where have you. . . where do you. . . san ka ba galing?


Wednesday, April 1, 2009


it's april fools' day! this makes for an apt time to read on some of the best and most popular april fools' day hoaxes ever (according to museum of hoaxes)! (",)

Sheep Albedo Hypothesis

2007: posted about the work of Dr. Ewe Noh-Watt of the New Zealand Institute of Veterinary Climatology, who had discovered that global warming was caused not by a buildup of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, but rather by the decline of New Zealand's sheep population. The reasoning was that sheep are white, and therefore large numbers of sheep increase the planet's albedo (the amount of sunlight reflected back into space). As the sheep population declined, the ground was absorbing more solar radiation, thus warming the planet: "It can be seen that the recent warming can be explained entirely by the decline in the New Zealand sheep population, without any need to bring in any mysterious so-called 'radiative forcing' from carbon dioxide, which doesn't affect the sunlight (hardly) anyway — unlike Sheep Albedo."Noh-Watt also warmed of a potentially destabilizing feedback mechanism: "As climate gets warmer, there is less demand for wool sweaters and wooly underwear. Hence the sheep population tends to drop, leading to even more warming. In an extreme form, this can lead to a 'runaway sheep-albedo feedback,' which is believed to have led to the present torrid climate of Venus."

Flying Penguins

2008: The BBC announced that camera crews filming near the Antarctic for its natural history series Miracles of Evolution had captured footage of Adélie penguins taking to the air. It even offered a video clip of these flying penguins, which became one of the most viewed videos on the internet. Presenter Terry Jones explained that, instead of huddling together to endure the Antarctic winter, these penguins took to the air and flew thousands of miles to the rainforests of South America where they "spend the winter basking in the tropical sun." A follow-up video explained how the BBC created the special effects of the flying penguins.

Sydney Iceberg

1978: A barge appeared in Sydney Harbor towing a giant iceberg. Sydneysiders were expecting it. Dick Smith, a local adventurer and millionaire businessman (owner of Dick Smith's Foods), had been loudly promoting his scheme to tow an iceberg from Antarctica for quite some time. Now he had apparently succeeded. He said that he was going to carve the berg into small ice cubes, which he would sell to the public for ten cents each. These well-traveled cubes, fresh from the pure waters of Antarctica, were promised to improve the flavor of any drink they cooled. Slowly the iceberg made its way into the harbor. Local radio stations provided excited blow-by-blow coverage of the scene. Only when the berg was well into the harbor was its secret revealed. It started to rain, and the firefighting foam and shaving cream that the berg was really made of washed away, uncovering the white plastic sheets beneath.

Derbyshire Fairy

2007: In late March 2007, images of an 8-inch mummified creature resembling a fairy were posted on the website of the Lebanon Circle Magik Co. Accompanying text explained how the creature had been found by a man walking his dog along an old roman road in rural Derbyshire. Word of this discovery soon spread around the internet. Bloggers excitedly speculated about whether the find was evidence of the actual existence of fairies. By April 1 the Lebanon Circle website had received tens of thousands of visitors and hundreds of emails. But at the end of April 1, Dan Baines, the owner of the site, confessed that the fairy was a hoax. He had used his skills as a magician's prop-maker to create the creature. Baines later reported that, even after his confession, he continued to receive numerous emails from people who refused to accept the fairy wasn't real.

PhDs Exempt From China’s One-Child Policy

1993: The China Youth Daily, an official state newspaper of China, announced on its front page that the government had decided to make Ph.D. holders exempt from the state-imposed one-child limit. The logic behind this decision was that it would eventually reduce the need to invite as many foreign experts into the country to help with the state's modernization effort. Despite a disclaimer beneath the story identifying it as a joke, the report was repeated as fact by Hong Kong's New Evening News and by Agence France-Presse, an international news agency. Apparently what made the hoax seem credible to many was that intellectuals in Singapore are encouraged to marry each other and have children, and China's leaders are known to have great respect for the Singapore system. The Chinese government responded to the hoax by condemning April Fool's Day as a dangerous Western tradition. The Guangming Daily, Beijing's main newspaper for intellectuals, ran an editorial stating that April Fool's jokes "are an extremely bad influence." It went on to declare that, "Put plainly, April Fool's Day is Liar's Day."

oh and today, zel gave birth to a healthy baby boy, who'll be called "hunks" francisco. this is no hoax at all! hehehehe!