Friday, March 30, 2012

Photojournalism entry #2: How to convert yourself into an anime character using nature

I love my bangs (that's 'fringe' to British folk?). I've had bangs for a while now and I don't see myself letting them grow out anytime soon. I know I have a particularly large forehead (many people have pointed it out to me – thank you, many people) so bangs are also quite useful in my efforts to cover up. 

This is me. In my head.

I'm not saying that wide foreheads are ugly, OK? I don't want Tyra to get all up on me. ('All up on me' – who the heck am I?). 

For some people, having beautiful bangs comes naturally or is the result of having enough money to have stylists on hand. 

For instance:

Acck! Please don't hurt me.


New girl, new bangs era


Beautiful bangs with a beautiful guy
on the side

Or even:

... with a beautiful monkey on the side

I, on the other hand, need maximum effort and time just to make my bangs behave, stand in line, and not look like they are having more crazy fun than their human owner (me).

So this is a pic of me taken in Macau, where it was cold and blowdrying was a breeze. Note the decent bangs. Note the smile. 

Little did this smiling tourist know what was ahead

Now here's what I discovered: a little frigid rain can turn one into a rather disgruntled-looking anime character. I didn't know my bangs had run amok until I saw my sister take one glance at me after our outdoor adventure and burst out laughing.

You can tell I was holding back some expletives

You are also allowed to laugh. Loudly, if you please.

And now to cancel out the Dora and Pinay anime images from your head ...

Are you SURE we don't look alike? Fine.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Watching the first 80 minutes of a movie is overrated

I feel like I have to apologize for another blog post about my niece Martina. So here goes: Sorry to all accidental readers who hate children, especially smart, cute children with squishy cheeks. I hope you can find something else to read online. I hear the Internet is big.

Now that that's out of the way ...

Martina and family have been spending a lot of time here, on account of it being summer and all, and probably because a certain sister is tired of cooking for her family (no judgment). They were here again yesterday in full force. After lunch, Martina watched a movie in my room because ... I don't know. Maybe she wants my work to be extra challenging, or maybe she likes my bed. Just like me when I was about her age, Martina has discovered the comfy joy of surrounding herself with pillows and calling it her 'house'. I remember those simple days ... *nostalgia break* ...

Ridiculously cute
Her movie of choice was 'Lilo & Stitch 2', in which I wasn't particularly interested (Did YOU know there was a Lilo & Stitch 2?) I asked Martina to keep the volume down (she was in my 'office' after all) so I couldn't really follow the story even I wanted to. After about an hour and a half of work, I decided to take a break and joined Martina on the bed. Unfortunately (as it eventually played out), I caught one of the last scenes of the movie. Let's all keep in mind that this was a movie I knew nothing about.

In the scene, Stitch (the alien) was unconscious and Lilo (the ridiculously cute Hawaiian girl) was holding him (is Stitch a boy?) in her arms, saying 'No! Please don't go, Stitch. No!' This was followed by a lot of heart-wrenchingly childlike sobbing and sniffing from Lilo and a lot of non-movement from the alien.


I knew it would happen. I felt the all-too-familiar lump in my throat, threatening to make me burst into hot, painful tears. Meanwhile, I noticed that Martina was tense beside me. Suddenly, she covered her face with a pillow and shouted, 'I'M GOING TO CRY!!! I'M GOING TO CRY!!!'

So we cried and wet the pillows. Because that's what we do.

What I learned today: Martina is not devoid of human emotions and might be a sap like her aunt.

Another thing I learned today: Never stop working. Never ever stop working.

(Spoiler alert: Stitch didn't die. I mean, seriously – It was on the Disney network! Did you really think that ... oh wait ... Bambi was a Disney flick, wasn't it? So much for that.)


[Warning: this next bit has a spoiler. Sort of.]

The above anecdote takes me back to the time I took a nap in my parents room, just when Mama was about to start watching 'The Notebook' on HBO. I refused to put myself through that torture again so I went to sleep. I slept soundly for most of the movie.

Unfortunately (again, as it eventually played out), I woke up just before THAT scene. You know, when the present-day elderly wife realized it was HER and it was HIM and there was hugging and crying and ... you know what I'm talking about. The second I saw it, I started sobbing like I earned a living from crying at useless stuff.

One thing I learned that day: Never stop sleeping. Never ever stop sleeping.


So ... what was Lilo & Stitch 2 about anyway?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

It's going to be a blah blah blah summer!

It's officially summer in these parts. Seems like just yesterday when nephew Juancho started grade 3 and niece Martina, kinder 1. Wasn't it just last week when I was tearing up at the sight of Martina in her first-ever uniform? I had the sinking feeling at the time that it would be all downhill from there. Soon enough, Juancho would be too cool to like me (I'm needy and chock-full of childhood issues) and Martina would stop asking for naptime stories. *SOB*

But wait, maybe all is not lost just yet.

Just the other day, Juancho (9 years old but knows how to fix his hair with clay – take note, not gel) and Martina (5 years old but still wears her clothes from 2 years ago) were playing some hidden clue game, which, if I understood correctly, involved Juancho hiding drawings of family members throughout our house and giving Martina clues on where to find them. Side note: it was the kind of game I would've invented and loved playing in my childhood. Why was I not invited to play this game??? (Like I said, chock-full of issues, man)

Anyway, I accidentally saw Juancho's drawing of me and immediately did what any touched auntie would do in this day and age: I shouted THISISSOCUTEJUANCH!!! ... and posted it on Facebook.

I can handle 5 tennis balls without even looking

There are so many things I like about this drawing. First of all, Juancho drew me with bangs, which, for some reason, makes me think he's really smart (obviously, I have my own unique logic-generating apparatus). Next, I love the smirk and crazy eyes, which were most likely unintentional yet so accurate. Oh and the tennis racket (I am assuming it's a tennis racket on account of the round balls spewing out of it)! How detailed is that???

I love this kid (Juancho, not the kid in the sketch).

That same day that I saw Juancho's drawing, Martina asked me for a story before we took a nap. She wanted a loooooong one this time, she said. She wanted it to be as long as (*big gulp of air*) "like if Lolo Jesus stood on top of Lolo Rene and on top of Tatay and on top of Mom and Tita Mia and you and Juancho and EVERYBODY!!! THAT'S HOW TALL AND HOW LONG I WANT MY STORY!!!"

I said no.

(Well, no to the tall/long story but I did end up telling her a short-ish story later on. I'm not heartless.)

To distract her from the idea of a story that could possibly go on for 2 weeks, I asked her what her kinder teacher wrote in her goodbye note (Aww! Did my teachers ever write me goodbye notes?). Martina knew it by heart:
"Dear Martina,  
Be a good girl ..."

I cut her off and asked, "Wait, do you know how to be a good girl?"


"So how do you become a good girl?"

"Um, you do blah blah blah things."

"What are blah blah blah things???"

"Ask mom. She knows."

*Staring contest with Ms 5-year-old Smarty-pants*

Not the actual staring contest but a pre-enactment

It's going to be a long summer ... really long, like if Lolo Jesus stood on top of Lolo Rene and on top of Tatay and ... you get the point.