noypi - bamboo
tignan mo, iyong palad
kalyado mong kamay
sa hirap ng buhay

andami mong problema
nakuha mo pang ngumiti
noypi ka nga. astig!

saan ka man naroroon
huwag kang matatakot
sa baril o patailm,
sa bakas na madilim

* hoy! pinoy ako
buo aking loob
may agimat ang dugo ko
hoy! oh, pinoy ako
may agimat ang dugo ko

sinisid ko ang dagat
nilibot ko ang mundo
nasa puso ko pala
ang hinahanap kong kulo

ilang beses na akong
muntikang mamatay
oh, alam ko ang sikreto
kaya't nandito pa't buhay

oh, sabi nila
may anting-ainting ako
pero di nila alam
na ang diyos ang dahilan ko *

dinig mo ba
ang bulong ng lahi mo?
isigaw mo, kapatid
ang himig natin *

Unbreakable Bamboo
when news came in a car
and a messenger that you'd
somehow decided on your
own to leap into the inifinite
black abyss i remembered
leaping into your arms and
wrapping every appendange
around your trunklike physique
"i love you, i love you, i love you,"
and i knew you meant it too
even though it was all a joke
nothing was meant of it - you were
my brother and to have lost you
so publicly and suddenly, i screamed
bloody why that suddenly all the
lights and the free trendy house
on the pier jutting into the pacific
with the perfect sunsets every night
and the free publicity and the secure
dj stint in this town's hottest radio
station, yes, that one we said created
history, yes, all of that shattered

the way mirror crumbles to infinite pieces
tiny enough to induce bleeding in case
you choose to swallow, i could still
follow you, you know, i could still stop

just like you did, didn't you realize
just how endless the sunset now tarries
how limitless now the sky seems and how
inane every tune and blast of music has
turned every moment thereafter my sister
into the mouthpiece
i threw the phone down
and picked up another
and kept on screaming
"you're fucking joking."

they asked me to call a number in case
friends suspect friends want to discuss
throwing in pearls in exchange for some
unfathomable peace, why would you want
to go somewhere no one can reach you?

i made them their commercial for suicide.
i told them to call a number if they think
something is wrong, and i wonder how many
more dramas have i sparked, how many
more intimates have i frayed all because
someone thinks one way when in reality...

i was far so i didn't see.
framed selfishly,
a mobius eternally:
you gave up on me.

luckily, i haven't yet met anyone who's suceeded in suicide. i just thought about that girl on MTV's real world seattle who lost a best friend, and i wanted to capture her grief.

ethically, morally wrong for a writer, because i just wanted to practice photography in words. shortly after that episode, and still hurting, the MTV character did make the commercial, but seemed better then, starting to let go of those who want to leave.
Gisel (10:51:19 PM): oist
ulanmaya (10:52:53 PM): oist?
Gisel (10:53:00 PM): hehehe
Gisel (10:53:05 PM): oist = pssst
ulanmaya (10:53:59 PM): uhh ya...

everyone have a good three-day memorial day weekend! :-D
  cool coffee cards

coffee people are a lot more anal, thorough, rambly and organized than most other types i've come across. they often have more than one thing going on given a time of day -

they're on coffee break - they're actually ruminating the mysteries of the universe.

they're chatting on the phone, they're actually forming relationships with a client - for quicker return.

they're writing something - they're actually blogging.

but you can't fault them because they actually render their employers service, even as they cloak their actions well.
  seafood feast
as much as there is to celebrate about converging crabs, there's also much to mourn - yesterday, a 124-pound blue catfish was caught in the mississippi river near the southern illinois town of alton. it was deemed the largest ever catfish caught in illinois. today, en route to a restaurant where it was supposed to be on display, it died.

"our big fish died, so now we have big fry," said an alton telegraph editor.

i suppose the fish was really old and decided that years of dodging nets and ignoring dangling, squirming worm has made it succumb.

"We're baffled by this," Fred Cronin, a fisheries biologist for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, told The Kansas City Star. "We took a lot of precautions to see that the fish was comfortable." [ more ]

big fish... grandfather fish poor fish. i suppose i would die too if i'm being transported to a place where they fry your kind.

i should lighten up: we have crabs! we have fish!

"that fish would taste nasty," said my colleague.

but i'm not picky... what a feast.
  feeling crabby

i ain't the only one feeling crabby lately.

thousands of spider crabs have converged off the coast of melbourne, australia, forming a three-foot thick cover the size of a football field.

scientists have no clue why they formed a crab conference. they say the event is extremely rare.

of course it would be, especially if it's the first time scientists have seen such movement.

otherwise, compared to yesterday, today is a bore day for me! yay! ok, gotta go.
everybody pray to every god they know of!!!

someone just called me for a tip that is very good for me! please please keep me in your prayers because i need to pursue this and i am scared as hell!!!
i've finally used this piece of neat, uberhot technology.

the thing is, i haven't uploaded the pix he - some guy - sent to my baby. julytown has it in his documents folder. truth is, i haven't uploaded it from julytown to my photobucket coz it's not a pix i like.

so imma chose from over 250 images the brother burned me into a CD.

but compared to bluetooth? a CD is a tad clunky. i bluetooth.

  celebrating a decade
today i went to the 10th anniversary reception of the start of wright college's newspaper, diversity. some of the people i worked with were still in college. but i am sure they have all moved out of their houses and whatnot. it was a small gathering of about 60 people, mostly staffers of diversity, all dubbing themselves as journalists.

the old enemies were still my enemies, because even though i truly am indifferent to our past conflicts, i didn't make an effort to say hi to them any further than the group hi.

the evening didn't try to make a big deal out of what could have been, and i realize that to try to extend myself further to people who i only vaguely remember and who prolly never really remember who i am would be to fake it. so i stopped asking how everyone is, even though i was sincerely curious.

tom is one of the former editors-in-chiefs that i thought was strange then, and pleasantly, a happy marriage hasn't tempered his teddy bearlike demeanor. he blushed when his wife teased him into admitting that he said there was no AP office in chicago, ahaha.

carol pleasantly recounted how we watched a second city show, the only second city show i am ever to watch, and how the actors nicely posed for a photograph with us afterward. i still have black and white photos of that event in one of the photoalbums in my room.

steven, erstwhile graphic designer and my closest colleague at that time, still wore a leather jacket even in humid may, still tried to be articulate in his own way. except that now the jacket smelled of cigarettes instead of leather, ahaha. he says i've never changed a bit.

curtis is graduating from depaul university law school. he now works for the city law office. his top boss is city attorney mara georges, who i always see on TV trying to defend just what the mayor's done this time, ahaha. he talked about his adventures obtaining a scholarship being as he is hispanic.

victor, david, sarah, karissa were all there and it was great to see them. i remember victor's scathing editorial about mexicans disrespecting their flags. david's consistent news reporting - one of the most reliable there was during our tenure. sarah's commenting on my accent as i read homework to her. karissa's editorials about being directionless just like the rest of us.

rita, EIC after sarah, was nowhere to be found. even sarah didn't know where she was. i remember her asking for comment on her editorial, her first as EIC, and my giving it without having read it, and her finding out, ahaha. even then, i can't lie very well. i remember rita speaking portuguese, and sarah, at the dinner, half-jokingly wondering out loud whether she'd been deported back to brazil.

another girl who sided with me about tommy hilfiger's alleged disrespect against asian americans was absent. her name escapes me now, but i remember her long, wavy hair. i remember it most because it was so blonde. she was editorial page editor and later brought up the issues of race again when 15 of us got in a scholarship at northwestern university whereas she and the other nonminorities didn't. and northwestern actually took in a caucasian student from loyola university. i can't remember what happened to her after we returned from northwestern.

i don't really have all that much ahead of everyone else in there. i didn't get to talk to too many people. everyone actually left after the speeches were done, ahaha. it ended at 9 p.m., four hours after it started at 5 p.m. i didn't put in as much into the evening as i could have, but it didn't matter - with diversity, the newspaper, what mattered most was the time and effort you put into writing the thing. i noticed how no one seemed to mince words that evening.

but i think everyone just wanted to go to the four seasons sheraton to party, ahaha - they had two hotel rooms, one for the keynote speaker and the other for the students to crash. that's one tradition that i hope never breaks ahaha - and my batch of editors started it. but i can't tell, ahaha - y'alls know the rules. what happens between writers stays with the writers.

one thing i could complain about though - one editor got up there and made a sort of a spoof of how our professor critiques the paper. it made me smile because she copied him well, but it also made me wonder. the students laughed when our professor compared the paper with what the new york times has done. he sees them as the future writers of the u.s., and the students laughed at that vision.

but i can't say, i didn't ask them why they laughed - they could be thinking of jason blair and the various other nuances that make people consider the new york times an "eh" paper as opposed to a good one.

but i don't think the NYT is that too far a shot for wright college students.

wright college was always a transitional place - no one stayed too long there, and the writers lived it up because the end of the month and deadlines don't go away. so even the thank yous were deliberate and sweet. and that's how i considered the new batch of editors and writers - they were starting something on their own. for those who want to continue, there's much to be done.

as for me, the school was a mere community college, but it gave me the start to everything - and the paper was no exception.

looking back now, what i needed most at that point in my life was space. for a writer, space is key. diversity was that to me.

but yes, even the keynote thought it was strange that the paper was named diversity, ahaha. but, being one of those who started usa today and only being invited to speak, he diplomatically only had good things to say about it. besides, with the 10th year dinner, the name's stuck.
  episode 3
star wars episode 3 spoilers ahead.

i immediately intensely disliked one of my friends when she cut off my raving for the movie, "garden state." she said that because she herself liked the movie just as much as me, but she just had to open her mouth and say, "it's just a movie."

totally hilarious and ridiculous to comment on right now, but i think you have to give space to someone when they start flying off in dreams like that. after all, you always hear people complain. you never hear them dream out loud.

so when both my siblings remained unconvinced about episode 3, i set aside my disappointment in them and just ranted about how interesting the plot twists were - but i won't spoil it for y'alls here.

i'll just drop hints:

my favorite, favorite scene of all involves the senate chambers and yoda hopping from one side of it to the other. to me, the entire ideological struggle subplot of the 6-part story is neatly summarized into that singular scene that lasts for only several seconds on screen.

there is a hellish scene involving fire and tears and the lone anakin skywalker.

there is an interesting use of telepathy between skywalker and the emperor, as well as skywalker and padme.

how interesting that one can hinge one's life on another, so that when that other turns on you, you seize the chance to escape when given it. but for padme, she knew that hope wasn't for her.

and there is a poignant scene of brotherhood and the role of women at the end.

and there are also several unmatched scenes - obi-wan in episode 4 looks waaaaaay too old if he were closer in age to anakin. and yoda seems waaaaaaay too young in episode 3 to only die in episode 6.

yoda dies. in episode 6, mean i. gone is, my master. the resurrection of the jedi, on luke, hinges. wonder i, if there be episodes 7, 8 and 9. hehehehehe. ...

and yes, i still wish i were a jedi-in-training and part of the rebel alliance to help bring justice and peace to the universe.
  with thunderous applause
it is often said that many people can write better lines for all five star wars movies. but i still believe in the power of the force... i mean, of reciting movie lines from memory.

The Emperor: [to the Senate] We shall change into the first Galactic Empire for a safe and secure society.

[Senate fills with enormous applause]

Senator Amidala: [to Bail] This is how liberty dies. With thunderous applause.

:swoon: oh, i cannot wait!

Episode III
  size matters in small towns
world's largest lightbulb
world's largest lightbulb

i'm planning what to do for my birthday. it falls on a friday this year, so it won't be for another two years until i get another three-day weekend!!! :-D so i want to make sure i do something fun whose memory will last me two years.

i came across this site: roadside america. and then i remembered that there was such a thing as the world's largest ball of twine.

world's largest ball of twine

"how cool!" i exclaimed, and i described it to my mother, who was the only one left awake in this house at 2 a.m. she was watching cnn. she wants to follow my first suggestion of going to milwaukee this year. and then i changed my mind and considered mackinaw island instead. and then i wondered that since i'm on a small town mood lately, might as well go for the ultimate in small town diversions: the race for the first, the best, the brightest, so yes - the biggest is a natural segway.

well, my mom looked at me and i can't look back. my family is used to my suggesting the craziest things. so i tried again, "cool! the world's largest coffee cup, mom!"

world's largest coffee cup

she gave one of her frowns and "hmms!" that ended the conversation. we're going somewhere, not just to all 'em small towns i just unearthed. but i persisted - one of my favorite books growing up was the yearly guiness book of world records, and the world's biggest ball of paint is actually in it!

world's biggest ball of paint

a couple brothers started painting a baseball decades ago, and they haven't stopped. you can actually contribute by painting a layer. when you're done, you get to sign a ledger and recieve a certificate to comemorate the occasion. you have to call in advance, of course - the ball hangs at one of the brothers' private garage.

i found more world's largest:

world's largest rubber stamp
world's largest rubber stamp

world's largest basket
world's largest basket

even canada is competing for the world's largest:

world's largest easter egg
world's largest easter egg

and my enthusiasm dampened there somewhat. ok, we're going north to another whole country and all we want to see's more of the same stuff? as if the world's tallest building isn't enough for me already:

sears tower by cardiss post office
sears tower and 311 s. wacker dr. building

and then i found another oddity that i stumbled across some years ago - and like the largest ball of twine and the world's largest potato, i didn't believe these things exist.

the writeup for the world's largest frying pan tried to be deadpan funny, but it ricochet from me:

"Rose Hill, North Carolina - World's Largest Frying Pan - Revisited

At first I thought that nothing had changed in the year since I last visited the World's Largest Frying Pan in Rose Hill, NC but upon closer inspection I see that the building that surrounds the pan has been treated to a new coat of white paint."

and i thought, visiting these places might feel like watching paint dry. i really don't have too many vacation days a year, ahaha. but i don't want to take things too seriously for this years' celebration of mine, either, ahaha.

well, my mom's gone to bed now, and my siblings and our pets have long left for dreamland, so i guess i'll hafta settle for the postcards for now. my birthday isn't nearly as unfortunate as christmas or new year, or better, leap year day, but it's still no fun being overshadowed by mostly more important things - the first day of school in manila, the first real storms, and later in chicago, the first real sunshine of summer. can't compete when the brilliant sun comes out like that. :-P

so hmm. mackinaw island i have to save for winter - i heard it's more picturesque when it's submerged in snow, and it gets so cold, lake michigan freezes enough to skate across. wonder what milwaukee's got to offer this time of year. if nothing else, there's always the milwaukee art museum whose buildings' wings flap every 12 noon.

... and then there's also the illinois capitol, springfield, and its new lincoln presidential library and museum. hmm. we'll see.
  from the 25th floor of the sheraton hotel in the afternoon
ulanmaya at flickr
from the 25th floor of the sheraton hotel in the afternoon
Originally uploaded by ulanmaya.

the best birthday gift we gave our mother for her birthday this year! :-D a night at the hotel sheraton and towers, from a floor that's just the same height as my office space, ahahaha. ... but the view is much, much more spectacular.

after feeding her all the seafood she can hardly recognize, our mom went into food coma, ahahaha... she also worked a double shift the night before, and only had a total of four hours sleep. so she did what she's been talking about for weeks and weeks now, that is, spending the night at a downtown hotel with the windows drawn and a view to look at. and this is her view. :-D

and then we, who rarely get a chance to roam downtown without thinking about travel time back to our house, went sightseeing and shopping. ...

  write a cafe story
hopping online looking for coffee cards when i stumbled on this page:

Write a Cafe Story.
Win $250 if you're #1.
Runners up will get their stories in print and get a copy of the book.

You must keep your tales under 1000 words. Be sure to note, or incorporate into the story, the name of the cafe and place where your story is set. By entering the contest, you give Caffeine Society the right to publish your story in our anthologies, and electronically, and you become eligible for the $250 prize to be paid on publication in a globally distributed book.

i clicked on the first name on a list of 85: "'A Mind-Brewing Experience' by Judi Silva."

After scratching his chin for the fifth time, he came to a decision.

"Finally," I thought.

"I'll have a brambleberry-filled muffin and a medium Caramel Blizzard Latte, dark with three sugars and extra shots of caramel and whipped cream. Oh, and can you put one of those chocolate covered maraschino cherries on it too please?"

I did a double take. He ordered his coffee the exact same way I did, along with my favorite muffin. "Make that two," I blurted out loud, not wanting the barista to waste anymore time.

The man turned around to see who shared his creative taste of gourmet brew and bakery delight. He smiled and said, "I don't think I've ever met anyone else who drinks their coffee this way and with the same muffin. Amazing."

"Maximum doses of caffeine and sugar," I replied, smiling back. "Sorry about jumping in and ordering mine at the same time but I'm kind of in a hurry."

"There's no need to apologize. Actually, I'm running late for an interview myself."

"An interview? You too?"

The barista broke into the conversation. "Is this all together?"

We both answered simultaneously. "Yes." "No."

"Ok, which is it folks? Do you see this line out the door," the barista asked in frustration.

As he handed a ten-dollar bill to the barista, he adamantly said "yes" and told him to keep the change for his troubles. Turning back to face me, he said, "I insist. Now, we should get to our interviews and allow some of these other people to get their 'cuppa joe' too, before they stampede us for taking so long."

We moved out of the ever-growing line with our carefully guarded items of sustenance. Precariously holding his in one hand, he held out the other in an introductory manner. By the way, my name is Rahul and yours?"

I stood there dumbfounded. How was it that I didn't recognize him earlier? I slowly reached out for his hand, still in a daze. "Rahul," I repeated. "Rahul Malhotra?"

"What a coincidence, that's my name too," he laughed. [ more ]

i imagined an east coast cafe, sunny outside but warm and cozy inside. they took a corner table and commenced chatting - the heroine was a writer late for an interview. interviews in cafes are highly trendy, but also highly intimidating. fools you into relaxing, ahaha, but truth is, the prospective employer might not have an office they can invite and show off to you, or they really just want to see how you behave out of the office. they want to work with a real person, ahaha, not a stiff, scared colleague.

The girl stood. He left a ten-dollar bill on the table for the check and a large tip. Immediately a young couple, smelling of the bars, sat down and called to the waiter to clean the table. Jonah walked away quickly. At the edge of the awning, he tried to give her his coat but she didn't take it. They began walking towards the river and passed Jackson Park. Jonah looked at the statue raised in the courtyard. The black horseman, the general with his sword drawn, the horse's front legs raised as to charge, stood silhouetted against the white cathedral. Jonah lamented that they closed the courtyard at night to keep out the bums. From a distance it looked only like a postcard in the rain. He wished he could address it to Ashley and send it first class. He thought that the cafe would not have been so crowded in France. The coffee would have been better there too. They actually knew how to brew coffee there. Nothing ever changed there. The girl began walking faster but Jonah wanted to sit awhile. He picked up his pace to keep up with her and they crossed the rail tracks, then walked up onto the path by the river. Jonah wished he had brought an umbrella for her. He wished she would take his coat. [ more ]

france! :swoon: need we say more? he didn't flush out descriptions of the rain, but rain is entirely how i imagine france in springtime would be. *sigh!* sunshine most of the time, but i imagine the rain to come in serious waves. the tone reminds me of americans trapped in france for writing lessons, ahahahaha. oh, but to follow hemingway and "trading spaces" designer hildi santo-tomas to paris, where english is considered crass in both language and manners... what a great adventure! :-D

When she'd finished half the beverage, she began to type her essay. In her research, she'd discovered that according to legend, the ghost of one of the murdured politicians, James Humphrey Carlton, haunted the old estate which had been preserved as an historic site. She rubbed her eyes and rolled her neck. Only 45 minutes had passed. She picked up the coffee and again was startled. There was only a quarter of it left.

"Something wrong?"

Jeanine looked up and saw the kind face of an elderly woman. She wore an old fashioned apron and a cap on her head. For some inexplicable reason, the woman seemed faded. Blinking, Jeanine shook her head.

"Enjoying your coffee?" The woman's face crinkled into a smile.

"Yes, I come here a couple of times a week." said Jeanine.

"So do I." confessed the woman. "Sometimes it seems like forever before I can enjoy a cup of coffee."

Jeanine didn't know what to say.

"What are you working on?" The woman was very chatty.

Jeanine quickly explained her history essay, hoping the woman would leave her alone so she could get back to work.

"Now that was a tragedy." Ignoring the surprise on Jeanine's face, the woman sat down and began to talk. "You know, James Carlton was the only honest one of the bunch. Unfortunately, he was at the wrong place at the wrong time." She waggled a finger. "He was a fine upstanding man. Good ideas. Good morals. He left behind a wife and 4 children."

This was new information to Jeanine but she made a mental note to 'google' it further. After a few minutes, the woman finally stood up.

"Nice chatting with you, dear." She inclined her head and in the blink of an eye had disappeared.

Jeanine cried out and again drew the attention of the same attendant.

"Can I help you?" asked the attendant politely.

What could Jeanine say? Silently she shook her head, packed up her belongings and decided to leave.

Later that night, she researched the info the woman had given her only to find it totally accurate. [ more ]

now, who doesn't like a really good ghost story?! :pleased: purty neat. i chose to read this one coz of the writer's unique last name, ahaha. and i think of all the three, and without having read all 85, 1000-word short stories, this is my favorite.

there is a similar chicago starbucks to the one mentioned in this story, in the old irving park neighborhood, on irving park and kostner roads. it's in front of an old church, i think a methodist church. in summer, there is hardly a free seat outdoors on the sidewalk tables. neighborhood kids play around their parents talking over cups of coffee. teenagers scream laughing at each other inside. couples talk, friends stand against the walls or sit on the sidewalk pavement until a table frees up.

the location gives the cafe an old world feel, but it is old irving park - even if the district wanted to gentrify, they can't. the neighborhood is crowded, the historic mansions off-limits to realtors. if a family moves out from there, no new one can afford to take their place because developers will tear down the house and build condo units in their stead.

curiously, across irving park road, the neighborhood faces row upon row of used car dealerships. the only apparitions to further haunt the neighborhood will be realtors looking to tear down more old houses to build condos. ghosts might become further agitated because they can't recognize cold steel and clear glass.

and unfortunately, the contest ended may 1. :-)

that's all i got to say about this week. everyone have a good weekend! :-D
  hair crazy
so a friend of mine decided to go mohawk with his hair. i went, "that's not a mohawk, that's really his hair!"

AHAHAHAHAHA :laughing:

this is why i have no friends. :silly:
  behind the scenes
the fun photographer is walking away. before that, i heard him packing.

he hoisted a computer, a supply bag, a camera bag, two cameras in his right shoulder, and a telephotolens camera on his left shoulder.

"don't i miss lugging all this stuff around for an hour out there," he said, referring to coverage of the two girls in suburban zion. i looked at him and smiled. his face was red and he was huffing a little.

"that's why we love it when a reporter comes up to you and says, 'do you have a pen?'"

one skill i've become very good at while working here is stifling happiness. if you know me, i don't do that. ahahahahaha.

"i'll remember that," was all i could say, nodding, but i can't help it - i grinned one of my huge grins.

mikee's expression never changes as he walks away, the straps of cameras and bags swinging. but his eyes loose focus and you know he's moved on from the joke - he's scouring the room to see what else he's left behind. he's looking for something else to poke fun at. he nods back.

the desk he left was spotless.
  fallen angels

First Night, Chicago
Set List from last night's opening show in Chicago.

Love and Peace
An Cat Dubh / Into the Heart
City of Blinding Lights
Beautiful Day
Miracle Drug
Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own
New Year's Day
Sunday Bloody Sunday
Bullet The Blue Sky
Running to Standstill
Pride In The Name of Love
Where the Streets Have No Name

Zoo Station
The Fly
Mysterious Ways

All Because of You

wasn't quick enough to grab tickets. this is what happens to unfaithful fans who pay attention to things other than the gods of rock and roll.
  pix while errands
most of my errands needed to be done downtown today. i should just move in around here, heehee! so of course i took pix:

pidong's mugs
sears tower and mugs

chicago harbor
chicago harbor

fog over lsd
fog over lake shore drive
  happy friday
oxnard, calif.

what a crazy week. monday and tuesday i actually worked. the rest of the week i felt like all i did was cry and drink. AHAHAHAHAHA. coz of my work sked i wasn't able to go with my colleagues after they closed rivers restaurant at all, but some of them closed a bar in chicago's greektown. to show their grief the medical writer cried uncontrollably while the cops beat reporter cracked jokes incessantly. the gen assign reporter left a crowd of 5 without saying goodbye, we don't think he knew whether he said goodbye to peeps, and i blogged with my face and hands red. warm all over. ahahaha. but s'all good.

i just want to be a normal person.

so that when people explode all around me, i could still see a clean way out of our situations that keep everyone happy.

i don't want to be any sort of roadblock for anyone, and i don't want anyone standing in my, either. i don't get people who're like that. that's what happened to me in socal, and it's not a reflection at all on the region, mind you. it was an uncle trying to be protective and sweet at the same time, but doesn't he realize i'm no longer the 4-year-old he last saw running around our old house in quezon city? apparently, not. so he said no to everything we asked we could do.

the reason i write this now is coz though my uncle did everything to curb our happiness, he drove us everywhere and paid for everything, ahaha. that was hella nice. i haven't heard of that happening anywhere at all - except maybe in the province. you don't let people know you've struck out on your own when you visit relatives in the province. you get yelled at and given the speech of what if something happened to you, ahaha. you live their lives. that should have been entertainment enough.

but we don't live in the province, we live in the city, and in the city are diversions of every imaginable stripe. in the city, not only can you live someone else's life with them, you can live the lives of countless others too, through the various entertaining things available - the beach. the food. the activities. the movies. the theaters. the books. the music. the conversations. the colors of shopping. the heady traffic. the quiet concrete. the singing trees. the watching sculptures. the waiting paintings. the steady sunrise. the glorious sunsets.

and yes, living in a big city doesn't necessarily mean living elsewhere is less. sometimes it makes no difference at all.

i am so looking forward to the weekend. time to find out if my life is still waiting.
free drinks all around for the news editor who's leaving tomorrow. i am recovering from two malibus in celebration of our news editor's leaving. malibu with water? someone's wife laughed at me. so she flagged a waiter and i had to order something. i'm still dreaming california, so i ordered the same thing, but with orange this time.

much better. ahaha.

but sitting here trying to complete my shift, i just drank a lot of water.

we had the party along rivers, a restaurant with an outdoors patio, literally, over the river.

if not for the free food and drinks, i would have thrown myself into the water. james webb is highly regarded as a competent and fair leader throughout this business, and what's more, he's a nice guy. so to prevent mass hysteria that would deprive chicago a competitve wire service, he strategically brought along his wife and kids, and it was great to finally meet christine, ahaha. i know of her only through the phone. as i said goodbye she's heard that i will go places some day, ahaha. that's kinna unsettling, especially from my editor's wife.

but on my very first day, the person who trained me sent a private message to someone across the room using our software's IM system. it reminded me of the various lovely ways of how gossip travels, ahaha.

friday is webb's last day. it should be a fun farewell. :-)
  the news editor is leaving. ...
and in his card and on the picture frame for his farewell gift, i repeated my thanks. and even though i repeat that thanks for millennia to come, it still won't capture all my gratitude. i wrote that on the frame, too.

this gig is my first-ever job out of college. there have been a few concurrent, but this is the main source of my income, ahaha.

my mother benefits mostly, but even as i hated, HATED it here in the beginning, i learned to appreciate it. it took me three years to soften. ahaha. i can go, take all the money, mom. the things i learn in here cannot be priced. but of course imma take those words back.

james webb is a poet when it comes to colorful combinations of curses. you should hear him when he checks email after coming back from vacation. no one can duplicate that, i won't dare attempt it here. he was there when i was intereviewed for the job, there when office leaders were scarce and everyone needed to be evaluated, there when every news bureau in the country was short staffed, there when i wondered whether i'd need to stick around, arrive early, arrive where, for assignments embarrassing and important.

he was the one that gave me the craziest, dirtiest and busiest assignment ever!!! ahahaha. um. let's not talk about that. i can't anyways. but i can tell you it is a hella fun assignment. when redemption smiles upon me, and all this is far, far behind me, i'll muster up the courage to consider telling, ahaha.

stanley swieton, photo by columbia college chicagohere is the photo that we take him for.* the bureau chief is splicing a pix of webb's face on top of swieton's.

webb's farewell party is tomorrow. he is getting a pix of him on that bike, framed and dedicated, ahaha. we call him homeless. we hope he hates his new job at the trib. we hope he never changes, because in a business that sups up people and turns them into dry twigs, he's somehow remained human.

so, being human, he can only do so much, that's why he's leaving, ahahahaha. ...

i think i'm going to be all right. everyone's suffering. the entire company is coming down on this office. the bureau chief's office is party central with people coming to sign the frame. for a whole year jim webb was the only thing standing in the way of me and the door, ahahahaha. i will remember his passion for the business most of all.

* Trib photo caption: This photo of Stanley Swieton was mistakenly identified in Wednesday's [April 27] Tribune as being of Joseph Lombardo. [ trib site ]

this character exists. i saw him cycle past the brown line washington/wells stop as i descended the station's steps yesterday. he wore a short green jacket that day and i considered whipping out my camera to prove to y'alls. but as he cycled slowly away, obviously just enjoying the downtown views, he turned left on madison street, and looking a little lost but curious, cycled away from my sight. on TV last week, he says he won't sue the tribune for mistaken identity. what a nice gesture. you never see the characters on TV cycle past you in real life, but i thought he looked familiar, ahaha. i recognized his bike.

on the web:
Photo folly: Columbia student’s picture of “mobster” proves trouble for Tribune, triggers battle between Chicago dailies
  all the leaves are brown. ...
san francisco

i had just received two postcards from california, one from san francisco and another from rodeo drive. and i've come to the conclusion:

if you're not from california, i won't talk to you. i only associate people from the golden state. i can't trade in silver for gold, that would be silly. why would you do that?

and no no no, no city looses its luster after a while. not california. that's so impossible. with all that sun, how in the world can you run out of glitter? even the moon showers you with its silver, as if to say, here, raincheck for now - until the sun comes back. here, look at the ocean, see how pearlescent the waves become?

here, look at the ocean, you can see the oil rigs in the distance. they're saving all that oil so when the middle east dries up, we can keep on driving our cars up and down highway 101, the wind in our hair, the sun on our backs, the convertible's top down, back and forth rodeo drive and the golden gate bridge.

ahahahaha... thank you!!! :-D
damn cali. making me look unoriginal!!!
ahahaha... hay. :-)
  malibu never gone
the backstreet boys are back! aptly, with their cd, "never gone." brainwaves all around!!! ahahahahaha - and then i hopped online on their web site. eek! but aren't we all suckers for the sentimental now,

the BBoys had filmed their latest video on the beaches of malibu - and i reminded again of socal. grrrrr!!!

the main reason why i hated my last trip to southern california was because i was kept from exploring the region. hello. we had come all that way only to be stopped?!?! it makes absolute no sense, nay, it softens the word INSANE. if you were me, you'd get incensed, disappointed and boiling mad each time you remember, too. ahahahaha.

listening to the bboy's web site clips right now. they're such eargasms as always, ahahahaha - but what's really creepy's i know ALL the songs. i mean, i can sing along. "the shape of my heart......" ahahahahaha!!!

and the classic,

i am holding you all through the night
i'll be the one (i'll be the one)
who will make all your sorrows undone
i'll be the light (i'll be the light)
when you feel lke there's no where to run
i'll be the one

woot woot... i used to belong to a band... there was a joke... "dedicated for all those who (didn't) make THE CUT"... ahahahaha... and but of course we were "more than that" ahahaha

ok bye. imma go run errands now. ahahahaha.

... i want it that way

tell me why
ain't nothing but a heartache
tell me why
ain't nothing but a mistake
tell me why
i never want to hear you say
i want it that way


welcome, and thank you for boarding the ulanmaya transit express. tickets, please. mind the gap as you depart. have a pleasant experience.

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