Tuesday, October 26, 2004

note to self: do not attempt to create a 12-course dinner with apartment food

it's true. we learn something new every day.

for instance, just last week, i learned that i am someone idiotic enough to forget to get off the elevator at her office floor, but poised enough to keep a straight face while the man who got off the top floor looked strangely at the pathetic dimwit who has to ride the elevator back down.

today i learned that i should not, under any circumstance except PMS-triggered depression maybe, consume the following in succession:

- 4 giant rice crackers;
- 1 entire tin of mackerel fillets in oil (even if it has the phrase "omega-3" emblazoned on the label);
- a huge 2" x 2" x 2"cube of dense, malaysian chocolate layer cake (even without the rest of this list, eating an enormous chunk o' chocolate is hardly a great idea);
- 3 pork and mushroom dumplings;
- one slightly large fuji apple; and
- too much iced tea.

(i started to write the food list hoping to convince myself that my tummyache is idiopathic but i should have known better.)

and if anyone even dares to comment along the lines of "that's still a light dinner. you didn't have rice anyway", i will personally see to it that this person will be the first in the world to have an entire dumpling (or a slab of chocolate cake -- he can choose) up his right nostril. or left. like i said, he can choose.

that is, as soon as this vague abdominal pain goes away.

maybe i should wash it all down with skim milk. after all, i haven't had dessert.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

6 days to go

there comes a point in every traveler's life when he or she asks himself or herself the painful question:


but he or she will learn from his or her mistakes of travels past, and will bravely move on, silently pledging to himself or herself that he or she will never ever attempt to bring too many office clothes, skirts (if traveler in question were a "she" or a kilt-loving "he") and/or socks.

(and this blogger is simultaneously pledging that she will never try to be too politically correct, because, really, the "he or she" crap is downright irritating.)

Monday, October 18, 2004

tomorrow is october 19

tomorrow is grossy's birthday. in her honor, i will post the rather dated writeup i made for her college yearbook (you'll see why she didn't submit it unedited). if you don't get or agree with any of the innuendos and inferences, then you don't know gross.

Only few of Mia’s friends know that she will never, under any circumstance, pass up the chance to watch a beauty pageant; or that she will never, even if her life depended on it, take badminton seriously. Taking on any endeavor (except anything that involves cleaning her room) with zeal enough for the whole cast of ASAP, Mia has consistently churned out school and nonschool projects grand enough to be praised by her parents and closest bribed friends. Mia is Helga of the “Hey Arnold” fame—a rough, tough, bony shell disguising (albeit unsuccessfully) a fan of “Tabing Ilog” (she’s a dead ringer for Eds), “Love to Love” (guapo pala si Cogie) and (gasp) “Meteor … (dare I say it?).” Although still confused about whose face she wants to be reborn with (Donita’s or Ashley’s?) or whose body she wants to morph into (Beyonce’s or Buffy’s?), Mia is 100% certain about her fate—to be a diva. Why not.

happy birthday to the girl i will always refer to as my younger sister.

note to readers: yes, the last punctuation of the writeup is really a period.

note to g.o.j.: i can change the writeup if you refuse to lend me clothes or shoes.

second note to g.o.j.: am kidding. or am i?

living on the edge

i'm not a risk taker. my secret middle name is "comfort zone" (note, not "... room"). bungee jumping and skydiving are not in my life's to-do list (but wearing gold shoes or a tube top sans the mandatory cover-up jacket/cardigan/blanket for no special reason is. will do it when i become a mother. mia can verify that i've declared this countless times.)

however, these past few days, i've discovered a brand new kind of risk taking: eating semi-spoiled food ("semi" implies the absence of discoloration, foliage or mindblowing stench).

in the span of a week, i've eaten two types of bread and two cups of yogurt that were past their expiry date. i slightly toasted the bread to kill ("invigorate", more likely) the bacteria that have started to reside in the multigrain goodness. as for the yogurt, i convinced myself that the slightly sour smell was normal (it is, sometimes, but not usually with the fruit-flavored ones).

refusal to throw out relatively expensive food
secret hope of contracting diarrhea to lose extra pounds gained through stress-eating
risk-taking behavior
a blog entry
soon on the orange express: "my horrendous toilet quarantine: why i regret buying too many perishables at the grocery"

Monday, October 11, 2004

cutting to the chase

there are tons of pinoys in hong kong: the relatively small subset of professionals and business people ... and the bigger population of servers, domestic help, band members (who are freakishly good!) and sexy dancers (i'm not sure what the correct term is nowadays, but i'm sure they do more than just dance. i'm sure they can also ... sing).

the dancers have a generic look: they're dark, curvy (again, another mild word, so just substitute your favorite adjective here) and have long, straight hair.

am going to skip a few unnecessary sentences and premises* (and only the smartest bloggers and alleged fans will understand why i don't want or need to spell out my realizations while walking along the streets of hk at night) and get straight to my conclusion:

when i get back home, i will get a drastic haircut. or a funky perm.

*thank you, gross of joe, for reminding me of this word. i can't believe i completely forgot "premise" after years and years of overusing it.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

divine intervention, divine comedy

last sunday, i had to get to a church using a map. as this was the first time i had to do this in my life, i set off early, wearing the most comfortable shoes i brought.

the "map" was a rough sketch i drew the night before, copied from the map posted on the web site of the church i wanted to find. i needed to reconstruct it because i didn't have enough foresight to print the map at the office.

life lesson: when copying a map, write the street names legibly.
life goal: learn how to write legibly.

as expected, i became the proverbial lost sheep. except with less fleece and more sweat. however, i didn't stop walking, except when i thought i heard church bells and it turned out to be the tram. or maybe it was the bus. but i was pretty sure that if it was moving along the road, it couldn't have been what i was looking for.

however, as divine intervention would have it, i chose all the right turns and found the beautiful church in the middle of nowhere (i'm in hong kong. every place is "nowhere.")

i was in such a great mood when i sat down and allowed my heart beat to slow down. so when i saw that the priest was a deadringer for mr bean (if mr bean were born in argentina), my cup of joy overfloweth.

i don't remember the last time i smiled ("grinned" is more accurate, really) throughout an entire mass. i kept expecting father bean to make a silly face or release a silly grunt. how can someone so seriously intense look so amusing? at the end of the ceremony, i approached him to say thanks. little did he know.

tomorrow, i have to find the church again. i don't know where the wannabe map is, so this time i'm going to find it based on sheer memory and pure intuition. and maybe father bean will help me pray that i find my way back to the fold.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

from what part of the US?

a conversation that happened during fireworks night --

new, possibly american acquaintance who just found out i'm from manila: you're filipino???

me: yes, don't i look filipino?

mr acquaintance who was allegedly an english tutor: you talk like an american. i thought you were american!

me, in shock: you must be kidding.

he wasn't.

this is what happens when one watches too much american tv. my ongoing love affair with cable was bound to bear fruit.


marti, if this doesn't make you believe in God, nothing will.

i didn't lose a single entry!!!

see below!!!

will eat to celebrate.

double *#(&!&*^!%$!!!

last night i lost 2 blog entries. one was a long, carefully composed and edited self-absorbed discourse on how noisy i am and how hard it is to be a noisy person in a silent office. lost that because the blogger site was acting up. so i made a second entry, mourning the loss of the first, saying that losing blog entries drives me to stress-eat (as if i need another reason). and i LOST THAT ENTRY TOO. (incidentally, the title of the second entry was *#(&!&*^!%$!!!, which explains the lame title for this one.)

so i just gave up last night.

today is a new day. if i lose this one too, i will go back to bed and cry my eyes out. and maybe eat some more.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004


i lost a long entry. i had spent an hour composing and editing and re-editing it ... and now it's gone. i lost it because the blogger site was acting up.

i have half a mind to finish the rest of the pringles.

there's nothing like a lost blog entry to make a woman stress-eat. as if i need another reason to eat.

the new me: quite quiet

spend a day in the editorial department of the "makati office" (now i have to specify the place [although maybe the quotes were a bit of an overkill], as i'm currently in the "hk office") and one of the first things you'll notice is i am one noisy person.

i walk noisily (i blame the heels), i laugh like there were no tomorrow (and i have the memo to prove it. think "excessive happiness" from patch adams), i tap my fingers on the keyboard while thinking, i bang my hand on whatever surface is available when i feel emphatic about something (smart officemates have learned to stay away), and i sneeze violently (i get "bless you's" from people at the opposite corner of the office).

so NOW that i'm in a different office, i have to change some of my habits just so i wouldn't call too much attention to myself (as if a stranger sifting through the pantry mugs would go unnoticed, but stay with me).

the walking has been solved for me -- the hk office is carpeted. the tapping and banging is under control, surprisingly -- i've managed to limit the wrist action to a minimum.

HOWEVER, controlling my loud sneeze and laugh is a bit of a problem. to say the least.

today, i had to control two sneezes by putting one hand over my face (fingers slightly squeezing my nose ... too much detail?) and the other hand over my sternum (note the use of an asexual term). the result? imploding lungs. i'll bet bits of alveoli are now scattered all inside my thoracic cavity.

as for the laughing: it's tough. very tough. especially when a certain british editor cannot help being witty on msn or just plain silly. YOU try maintaining your composure when your peripheral vision catches a 6-foot-3-inch man hamming it up, trudging (and grunting) slowly to the printer while assuming the slouch of a defeated man. i will bring duct tape tomorrow. still thinking if i should use it to tape my mouth shut or tie my favorite hk officemate to his swivel chair.

Saturday, October 02, 2004

smiley smiley night

yesterday was chinese national day ... or something. the important thing to remember about yesterday, in my opinion, is that it was a holiday that fell on a workday. and really, is there anything else i need to know about it?

(incidentally, i have great timing when it comes to holidays. there's always some holiday when i'm in town. i think of it as the cosmos cooperating with my laziness.)

the other important thing to know about it is they usually have fireworks on that day (and other days, i suppose, but this entry is not about firework-associated hong kong holidays). i was very fortunate enough to be invited to the flat of the friend of a friend of a friend (don't think about that too hard). his place was set on the side of a hill, and had a balcony with a great view of the harbor (harbour, if you please).

as someone who has never seen grand fireworks displays, i was stunned by this particular exhibition. there were the usual exploding balls, the great spheres of twinkly white lights (which i really like), the run-of-the-mill shooting light type of thing (i have the terminology down pat) ... but what was really spectacular and intriguing to me (aside from the immaculate state of this guy's flat) was the exploding smiley.

you see the ball of light zoom up into the sky and when it explodes, it turns into a smiley in mid-air. HOW??? i don't care about the concentric rings and the hearts (ok, now that i've mentioned it, maybe you can explain the hearts as well). just tell me about how you can get two eyes and a smile to find their way in the smoky air and stay where they are meant to be! my champagne-soaked brain and i couldn't let that thought go the whole night.

i, of course, wanted to talk about it some more, but being the only filipino in the group, i felt like i had to stick to the practical, sensible issues at hand (like if i was open to marrying a man who already had 10 wives. don't ask. they already did).