I thought I'd break out from hibernation on one of the most important days of my life - Miguel's birthday!
I had him 17 years ago in the midst of Typhoon Gading. He was tiny at 5.6 pounds, but quite a long kid already at 18 inches. My friends said back then that he was the most peaceful looking baby they've ever seen. And it was true despite all the turmoil I was going through during that time.
It wasn't easy, but with support from my family and real friends things just fell into place. What helped though was talking to my Ate's friend who went through the same thing. It was like talking to myself ten years forward. It was what set me off to follow the path that would ensure that my son would have a secure and stable future.
Miguel has been the driving force behind whatever I have achieved. After I had him I managed to become editor-in-chief of our university's literary publication, garner a best thesis award (for my Political Science degree), get a job at the country's leading telco even before I graduate and now work for an international company. I just realized recently something profound (to me at least!), "You can mess up your life, but make sure you don't mess up your kid's!"
It's just amazing how patient Miguel has been with me (not the other way around). I've dragged him around so much (he's my official assistant too) in the last 17 years without any fuss, although now I've been giving him a choice to just stay home (now I'm being a good Mommy). In the past week that I've been sick he's also been cooking for me! (And I hear he's planning to make some leche flan this weekend).
Last weekend Clipper had new Angry Birds toys. They have a really huge plush toy (as big as the pillow) and I had a hard time keeping myself from buying it. I managed and just got myself a mouse pad. Haha.
I also contented myself by just taking photos and hubby took a photo of me doing just that.
Such lovely toys, I just don't have space at home anymore :)
When me and my blogger friends get together we oftentimes make up stuff (as what storytellers usually do). I remember I used to do that a lot back in college when I was part of our university's literary folio. Anyway, our banter revolved around crispy pata this time around. The reality though is most of us can't consume as much crispy pata as we used to when we were younger and some of us aren't allowed to eat crispy pata anymore. That didn't stop us from ordering one large crispy pata when we dined at Max's Restaurant last weekend.
So what is the crispy pata bloggers association? It's an organization of friends who love eating crispy pata (can you count the number of times I've included crispy pata in this post?) and well... that's just about it haha. And here's our pledge of allegiance (made by Sweetie):
The Crispy Pata Bloggers Creed
I pledge allegiance to the association of the Crispy Pata Bloggers And for which it stands, one nation, under pig
with crispiness and pata for all.
Please note that this post was just born out of boredom and fun.
It's been raining the past few days so I thought I'd put together a new playlist - songs that talk about rain. My friend, Jomar, said that most of the songs about rain are sad, but with help from Plurk and Twitter friends I managed to put together a good mix of happy and weepy rain songs.
I didn't know some of the songs so I had a grand time listening to them for the first time via Youtube.
Rain Rain - Nyoy Volante and the Mannos
Sukob Na - 17:28
Tuwing Umuulan at Kapiling Ka - Eraserheads and Franco & Ayen Laurel version
Ulan - Cueshe
Pumapatak na naman ang Ulan - Apo Hiking Society
Rain - Donna Cruz
Ulan - Rivermaya
Tag-ulan - Wency Cornejo
Tag-araw, Tag-ulan - Hadji Alejandro
Sa Pagpatak ng Ulan - Cesar Montano (never heard this song, I just got it from Sweetie)
Rain - Madonna
Storms in Africa - Enya
No Rain - Blind Melon
Crying in the Rain - Everly Brothers
It's Raining Men -
Laughter in the Rain - Neil Sedaka
Kiss the Rain - Billie Myers
Singing in the Rain
Rhythm of the Rain - Cascades
Bus Stop - The Hollies
Soldier in the Rain - England Dan & John Ford Coley
Belle - Jack Johnson
Banana Pancakes - Jack Johnson
Rainy Days - Ja Rule
Sunshine on a Rainy Day - Emma Bunton
Walking in the Rain - A1
Rain on Me - Ashanti
Thunder - Boys Like Girls
Purple Rain - Prince
November Rain - Guns N Roses (not the TV show!)
My curiosity was piqued when I first saw Nestle's ad on the Kasambuhay Habambuhay short film anthology and I was about to bug hubby to watch it over the weekend at SM Megamall. We got lucky though because my friend, Ricky, sent out invites to an exclusive screening at Nestle. I was bent on going despite the rains.
I can just imagine how hard it is to make a "centennial ad". How can you cram 100 years in a short television ad? Nestle said that they just "aimed for the heart" and I must say that each and every time I see their ad I couldn't help but relate to it. Here's the epic TV ad if you haven't seen it yet -
Anyway, so Nestle went a step ahead and created a 100-minute story of lives intertwined with Nestle products - Bear Brand Powdered Milk Drink, Nescafe, Milo, Nido, Nestea, Coffee-Mate, Maggi, Bear Brand Sterilized, Nestle Ice Cream, Nestle Koko Krunch, Nestle Fruit Selection Yogurt and Nestle Fitnesse (have you checked what's in your cupboard lately?). They worked with directors who have done their TV ads - Raul Jorolan, Henry Frejas, Jeorge Agcaoili, Carlo Directo, Sid Maderazo, A/F Benaza, Jun Reyes and Stephen Ngo.
Here's a rundown of the ten short films:
The Howl & the Fussyket - directed by Chris Martinez, the Howl & the Fussyket tells a story about a boy who joins a declamation contest. He wasn't the best choice of their class, but his mother and sister realized that he had a "f" and "p" speech defect they enlist a couple of people to help him. With Eugene Domingo and Kiray, this anthology was really hilarious and a must-see for Moms with their kids.
Unplugged - directed by Raul Jorolan. This is one of my favorite films. The story is about a coach who brings his team to his grandpa's place. Seeing that the boys were more enamored with their gadgets, the grandpa (played by Eddie Garcia) confiscates all their devices so they could reconnect back to life. Being someone who is always connected I oftentimes wish that there would be days that we can just stay offline and enjoy what's out there more.
Silup - directed by Jun Reyes. Sid Lucero plays the role of a tough, role-model policeman who keeps his gun in the cupboard beside cans of milk. The story shows what is essential in life: love.
Isang Tasang Pangarap - directed by Sid Maderazo. Comedienne Ramon Bautista plays the role of a "coffee psychic" (Elias) which brings hope to people. The film was really funny and everyone burst out laughing when Elias proclaimed, "Walang himala!"
Sali Salita - directed by A/FBenaza. We all get caught up with work and oftentimes we forget that our children need our undivided attention. The story is about how words managed to reconnect a boy and his Mom. You'll also be surprised who played the role of the grandfather.
Oh! Pa Ra Sa Ta U Wa Yeah! - directed by Jeorge Agcaoili. The film is an extension of the Nestea TV ad "ibuhos ang saya" where Nico shares to his family his dilemma in courting Mattina. Nico's father shares a family heirloom, a 100-year old manual on how to court women. It's a musical comedy, so I'm sure you'll be entertained. Will Nico finally get Mattina's sweet yes?
Downtown - directed by Stephen Ngo. I was swinging from being teary-eyed and giggling throughout the film. The story unfolded mostly through actions and I love the twist at the end. It's one of my favorite stories especially since it integrated life in Binondo.
Tingala sa Baba - directed by Henry Frejas. The two kids really pulled off their roles well in this film. Two kids, one rich, one poor, are on a see-saw and their problem was how to get the chubby kid to be on top for once. Both lead very different lives, but find friendship while playing. Another one of my favorite films!
Cooking Mo, Cooking Ko - directed by Chris Martinez. A simple Romeo and Juliet story told through rhyme. Would love (or Maggi Magic Sarap) bring peace to the warring families?
Sign Seeker - directed by Carlo Directo. The John Lloyd film. `Nuff said.
Watching the short film anthologies would make you feel a myriad of emotions, so bring tissue, water and Kitkat when you watch the film this weekend (for free!) at SM Megamall.
Crispy Pata bloggers (a.k.a. my blogger friends) with Ricky Baizas of Nestle.
Thank you Nestle for this experience and thank you for the cookbook! I can't wait to try out the awesome recipes!
We've been seeing news about how exploitative foreign companies with local partners have harvested corals twice the size of Manila. This made me really sad because I love going to the beach. I was just 8 months old when my parents started bringing me to our place in Pasacao, Camarines Sur eveyr summer. During low tide I would usually explore the reefs that would jut out from the water and I do that year in, year out.
What's alarming though is how our lovely beachfront has been ruined by a neighbor who built an illegal pier. Their area used to show a bed of coral reefs during low tide. My Dad tried to fight them numerous times by reporting the illegal port, but the local government did not do anything about it. My Mom called me up the other night to tell me that there are now three illegal ports in Pasacao and that's why the government port isn't earning anything.
The illegal pier.
When our neighbor built the illegal pier I observed that the number of fish and sea creatures I used to see lessened significantly. I have also witnessed them dump water (probably dirty) into the sea from the ships (not small bangkas) docked at their pier. I know my Dad did his best to report this illegal activity, but the local government in our area has just continued to ignore it.
Our small place in Pasacao is my home. A place that holds happy childhood memories for me. Unfortunately today it's now part of a statistic of places that need saving. But how can we possibly save a place that's being exploited by people with money?
My thesismate, Johannes, who heads the marketing communications office of De La Salle University called me up the other day and asked if I was going to attend any of the centennial activities. So I thought I'd look for some info and get my college buddies to go to some of the events! Here's a list and some resources:
There's something about Boracay that makes you want to go back again and again. Each trip for me has been unique and bitin! There's just something about Boracay that makes you want to stay and become a beach bum.
And I guess I'll just let the photos speak for itself.
Almost 2 decades ago my friends and I kidded each other one hot summer day that in time we'd be in touch with each other through our PCs. During that time we had no idea what the internet was (it wasn't commercially available), so we had no idea that one day we'd indeed be in touch with each other through this platform. We knew that we'd eventually part ways because we were going to go to different universities (me in DLSU, one in UST and one in UP), but we swore to keep in touch with each other.
We did, through snail mail then eventually through email, Friendster, chatting through YM, then came Multiply, calling each other through Gtalk, then Facebook and Twitter. Each iteration allowed us to share more about our lives (despite the distance) and collaborate on the cloud (especially during my wedding!). We also hopped on different ways to connect online - first through dial-up, then DSL and now through mobile internet. Usually though the means to connect to the internet can't catch up with what we do online.
I am online most of the time because of work and I'm quite dependent on the "cloud" so I'm really fussy about internet speed. I had to upgrade my DSL plan last year because my requirements weren't being met by the lowest DSL plan. So I jumped on the chance to try out Smart LTE in Boracay. Smart LTE stands for Smart Long Term Evolution. It just essentially means that we can experience much faster internet - up to 25x faster (assuming you are using 2Mbps connection) and up to 50x faster in the future. A 4 gigabyte file which usually takes hubby 16 hours to download (his log files for his website) would just take approximately 30 minutes. Or uploading a 320+MB file which would take an hour or two would just take about 5-6 minutes. To me it just means humaharurot na internet!
I asked Allan Siao (Smart's technical lead) why they chose to showcase this new technology in Boracay. He said that it was marketing's idea to challenge them to implement it there. He showed us a diagram which compared how 3G/HSPA vs. LTE technology worked. 3G/HSPA required more transpo and access gateways versus LTE which was essentially flat (or straight). Both though have trouble with obstructions (walls/rain/fog). Speed is also dependent on the device you are using, so that meant my 3-year old jalopy of a laptop wouldn't be able to maximize the available capacity of LTE.
Anyway, here's the first glimpse we had of Smart LTE. Speedtest was done using a newer laptop using Firefox. Download speed was 44.49Mbps, upload speed 2.94Mpbs.
I asked Allan if the browser you use would make a difference and he said that it would, so I asked them to do a speedtest using Google Chrome. Download speed was 52.67Mbps, upload speed 2.85Mbps.
I thought I'd test Smart LTE using sites built using HTML5, so the first thing I did was to play Angry Birds on Google Chrome on HD! It brought me great joy to be able to play Angry Birds on a high-speed connection because there wasn't any lag.
And then I tried playing around with some Google Chrome Experiments.
Watched Youtube Movies.
Watched Janette's live stream interview of Anne Binuya (Smart Bro team).
And the an online book, "The 20 Things I Learned About Browsers and the Web".
For the rest of my stay I tried out Smart LTE by doing my daily routine - opened 3 browsers (Chrome, Chrome Incognito and Firefox) and opened more than 10 tabs for each browser, accessed my data on the cloud, checked mail, chatted, Gtalk voice calls, uploaded photos, and hopped from one social networking account to the other. I can say that I was more productive since I wasn't worried about the speed even though I was using my 3-year old laptop.
I hope that Smart LTE would be available soon (they said late 4Q 2011 or early 1Q 2012). Pricing isn't available yet and I hope it would be very affordable! This would also be awesome for schools that would be using tablets this schoolyear (ask Mr. Jun Lozada and Neil Andrew Nocon about their two separate projects) and since was able to do it in Boracay perhaps they can also make internet connectivity better for schools in Mindanao. :)
With bloggers Van, Az and Mark.
With Rezza, Az, Anne, Gay, Kyle, Janette, Mark and Van.
Thank you Smart for allowing me to experience the future of the internet!
I ended up sleeping in the wee hours of the morning the first week I played Angry Birds. The last time I got so addicted to a game was a year ago when I started playing Plants vs. Zombies. I can't explain it, but obliterating pigs using birds has been a great stress-buster. After I finished the first game I managed to curb my addiction. Anyway, now I'm trying to finish Angry Birds on Chrome and discovering the Chrome dimension made the game super fun too.
My collection was waiting for me when I got home from Singapore the other day.
And then got a couple of keychains from Clipper the other day. They're just PhP55 each. Perfect excuse to change old keychains!