Saturday, November 11, 2017

Dr Carlie is in

There's nothing like a funny family member to make me want to blog again. This latest story has a semi-new character, Carlie, the 2-year-old daughter of my younger sister, Mia. I sort of introduced her to you, my millions of readers, in this post from 2 years ago.

Me and Carlie, having none of this selfie nonsense
Anyway, little Carbaroni is in town for a while so we are all overjoyed. Carlie has grown up (well, sort of) to be an adorable girl who just won't stop talking until she gives in to sleep. Which can be good or bad, as I've learned from all my conversations with Carlie's cousins, Juancho and Martina, when they were younger. (I can link dozens of posts, but I chose just that one because it's past my bedtime. Please feel free to search my old entries from a time when I blogged regularly and furiously, and I was probably funnier. And thinner. *Sob*)

Today, I had to watch Carlie for a bit because her mommy was taking a much-needed nap. I was getting a bit sleepy myself so I had to end our catching and throwing practice (we used a tiny, fluffy dinosaur as our ball, but with my energy level, it felt like an oversized bowling ball ... on fire). We sat on the couch instead and she started to pretend to be a doctor examining me.

Oh no.

Because I've had countless experiences with too-honest kids and their evaluations of my body parts, I braced myself for the inevitable. After all, just a few months ago, a chatty and most entertaining 4-year-old girl told me – after a few minutes of careful observation and pinching – that my arms were, decidedly, 'too big'. She wasn't wrong.

Back to my niece.
Carlie: I look at your leg. 
Me: OK. It's big, right? 
Carlie: No, small.

(YES! Small victory! Literally!)

Carlie: The other one. 
Me: This leg is big? 
Carlie: No, small.


Carlie: I look at your tummy. 
Me (in mortal fear): OK. It's soft? 
Carlie: No, it's beautiful.

AWWWWWWW. Sniff. Thanks, Car.

Not all my blog stories have a weird ending, after all. 

(And I'll stop there before I tell you about the real ending of the night: her mini-tantrum during my futile attempt at brushing her teeth. When dealing with small children, just like the rest of life, you really can't win 'em all.)

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Martina is her mother's daughter

Even at the ripe old age of almost-11, Martina still gives me many reasons to blog. Yesterday proved it. And how.

I was hanging out with Juancho (who just turned 15! FIFTEEN!!!) and Marteens, each of us doing his or her own thing involving a screen of some sort. I was working, Juancho was watching a sitcom and Martina was playing some modern revival of the Nokia snake game (I hated that damn game).

Martina has never seen the cartoon version, can you believe it?
Then, without provocation, Martina started singing with all her might from "Beauty and the Beast":
Course by course!!! 
One by one!!!
'Til you shout ...
(To those who have no idea, the next line is supposed to be "Enough! I'm done!" ... but my niece thought it was ...)
Wahahahaaaaaa! Juancho and I couldn't stop laughing.

To be honest, I quite like how it rolls off the tongue. 'Til you shout tarantantan! "Do you want more bread?" "Tarantantan."

This really shouldn't surprise me because Martina is so much like her mother, my Ate, who also tends to mishear Disney lyrics. Three words: a pretty walk. (If you click that link, you'll see that this isn't the first time Martina has mangled songs either.)

Full disclosure: Martina cannot sing a single phrase of that movie correctly ("I need success!" is definitely NOT in the opening song "Belle" – figure it out), but life is short, and we must get on with the next story.

Another topic we discussed was Ate's height (hahaha sorry, Ate).
Juancho: What's Mom's height? 5'2"? 
Me: No way. I'm not even that height. I'm 5'1.75" and your mother is smaller. 
Juancho: She says she's 5'2". 
Me: Don't believe her. 
Juancho: Martina believes her. 
Martina: Of course I do. She buys me donuts.

End scene.

Happy mother's day?

Monday, January 23, 2017

Martina fires some shots

My 10-year-old niece Martina is turning out to be quite the loaded weapon. Of zingers. Not that this should surprise me, as I've documented many of these attacks in my blog throughout her life. But it's still quite shocking when I get hit.

Just yesterday, while I was in the car with Marteens and Ate, her mom, she fired two awesome shots targeted at very innocent victims – all within 5 minutes.

First victim: JUANCHO

Martina: Mom, Juanch has so many friends. 
Me and Ate: That's a good thing, Marteens! 
Martina: ... but I have more.


Second victim: ME

Me, longing for ice cream and aiming to make an announcement that I would treat them: You know what I REALLY want to eat right now? 
Martina: Everything. 
Martina: You like everything.


My advice? Run and hide. 

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Weekend radio tales, starring Mama

[Before you accuse me of bullying the saint who brought me into this world, please know that I told her I'd write about these. And I told her I look forward to her bloopers because without them, my blog would be dead. OK, now you may accuse me.]

On Saturdays and Sundays, I drive my parents to tennis at an ungodly hour. I get to listen to the radio only when I drive, so twice a week, Mama and Dad have to bear with my station choices. This was a particularly good weekend ... for blog fodder.

Saturday, Mellow 94.7 FM (Hahahaaaaaajudgeme):

Just some random cute photo of a car radio ...
and the right station!
The Star Wax jingle is a song that's particularly hard to get out of your brain, which makes it a very effective, very irritating commercial. When Mama heard it (apparently, for the very first time) yesterday, her reaction was:

"Wow, I didn't know they had commercials like this now."

Which was a strange thing to say, given that most of the local brands feature original songs in their radio spots.

But I know how Mama's mind works. So I said, matter-of-factly:

"Ma, Star Wax. That's not an ad for STARBUCKS."

"Ah. So that's why."


Now sing it with Starbax in the lyrics. Go. I'll wait.

By the way, the previous link was an older version of the song. This is the newer one. If you click this too, I admire your courage. You're a star (wax). (I apologize.)

Sunday, Magic 89.9 FM (Throwback! I don't know if this station's as cool as it used to be.):

Speaking of "hard to get out of your brain," Nicki Minaj's Super Bass was playing softly in the car this morning. I didn't think Mama was listening until she heard part of the verse that said something like "yadda yadda yadda American guys."

"American guys again?! I heard a song yesterday with American guys. American guys, American guys ..."

I was just quiet, because I had a feeling this was going somewhere absurd. And of course, Mama didn't disappoint.

"Oh no wait. It wasn't American guys. It was QUEEN ELIZABETH."


Wrong country, wrong sex! Christmas came early this year! Thank you, Mama!


PS: I was curious so I looked for the Queen Elizabeth song. It might be this one. As to where and how Mama heard it, don't ask. Or ask her, and tell me if something funny happened. I'll need the material.

Friday, December 02, 2016

My first taste of Starbucks pee-et-el

In late 2015, I stayed with my sister Mia in New York for a few months to help her out with baby Carlie. Despite the long semi-vacation in the Broadway state, I wasn't really able to fit in much theater. So I was happy when Mia's friend from Chicago, Patt, was in town to watch one of her favorite musicals, multi-Tony-award-winning Fun Home, for one of its last shows with the original cast. My sister couldn't join us, what with motherhood and all, but relieved me of nanny duties and even treated me to a free ticket.

(L to R) Little old me; the amazing star of Fun Home, Beth Malone;
and the equally amazing Patt!

After watching and thoroughly enjoying Fun Home – which was, for something with "Fun" in the title, so unexpectedly heartbreaking and emotional – Patt asked me if I wanted to join the lottery for Hamilton. I had two questions: what was the lottery and what was Hamilton? What was HAMILTON?!? That was the same day I found out I was living under a rock. (I included the link for those who are still under it.)

As it turns out, theater ticket lottery is super fun. Every day, ultra-discounted seats are raffled to people who show up just before the show. Thrilling! Especially if you're on a budget and/or couldn't get seats for really popular plays (read: Hamilton) and just want to try your luck.

So Patt and I went to the theater venue and waited in line to drop our names into a bowl. There were 10 front-row seats up for grabs, so chances were slim that we were going to be picked out of the throng of people who were also there for the lottery (and, unlike me, actually knew about Hamilton and how impossible it was to buy tickets).

Oh and here's an important fact I need to stress about that fall day: It was effin' cold. If I remember correctly, it felt like about 5°C according to my weather app. And the wind was blowing because, apparently, the world hates me. Aaaand because my brain doesn't always work, I wasn't wearing a very thick jacket. Which was bad. Considering I'm a tropical girl who gets cold in Philippine malls.

We were outdoors for 2 hours.

Don't get me wrong – I don't regret a minute of that mini-adventure (OK, maybe I regret the choice of jacket). I loved the excitement just outside the theater, and I'm happy that Patt brought me to that lottery. But ...

Two. Hours.

In. The. Frigid. Wind. Of. Manhattan.

So after we found out we didn't get the tickets (aww), Patt asked if I wanted to get coffee because she knew I was freezing. There was a nearby Starbucks, and I got excited all over again because I'd never tried their pumpkin spice latte (PSL, if you want to be cool and acronym-y). And maybe more than that, my gloveless hands wanted to hold something warm.

Entering a building after being outdoors for 2 hours (have I mentioned we were outside for 2 hours?) was nothing short of glorious. I felt my body start to warm up and was happy to feel my forehead move again. Little did I know that some parts of my body had yet to thaw.

When the barista asked me what I wanted, here's what my frozen lips and tongue came up with, to my horror:

"A punggin spite latte."

"Excuse me?"

After a long inhale, I attempted again: "A pun ... kin ... spite ... latte."

I don't quite remember if Patt read my lips and helped me out, or if the barista saw my mouth desperately trying to function and guessed correctly that the cold foreigner wanted the most basic fall drink out there. Embarrassing? Maybe. Entertaining? Definitely.

And if you're curious, that latte, like that whole day, was za-may-zing.


(I remembered to blog about this because of my first taste of Korean bingsu in a cold mall. My stiff tongue brought back all the PSL-after-lottery memories.)