Monthly Archives: September 2006


Chalk it up to the typhoon statistics: one broken umbrella, suffered at around 8 am, September 28, at that street from Pasong Tamo going to Makati Med. It was a new umbrella at that, bought it just last Saturday. I liked it, it was one of those nifty folding ones that opens and closes at the push of a button. Now it’s well, shattered.

Imagine having this bearing down on you:


I read that Milenyo was compared in intensity to the typhoon Rosing in 1995. I remember Rosing. Somewhere in my old journals, there’s a clipping of a news article chronicling its effects, accompanied with a picture of a man wading neck-deep in floods. “It was a like a typhoon that had a chainsaw,” one government official described Rosing, as he conducted an aerial survey of the damage. And indeed, in the wake of Milenyo, the streets of Manila are littered with branches – even entire trees – felled by the winds. It’s a nightmare for urban greening advocates.

But good news, of course, for anti-ugly-billboard advocates, as the huge things proved to be no match against a – well, Signal No. 3 Storm lang naman. But I’m wondering, can anybody tell me if that lurid giant TV in southbound EDSA-Guadalupe made it? I wish it’s been smashed to smithereens by now. The thing is so bright and ugly and hazardous you’d think it’s got to be illegal one way or another.

We spent the day at the office yesterday doing what we can without electricity – making phone calls, reading up on stuff, paperwork – while my boss worked feverishly, racing against the battery time of her laptop. It was late afternoon by the time she gave up and sent us home. I later learned that after leaving the office, she and the admin officer went around looking for a temporary office space with a generator where we can move to just in case the power’s not restored by today. We came this close to holding offices at Starbucks, or some hotel nearby. I think I would have liked the change of scenery. But come morning, they’ve managed to restore electricity at least in the Makati central business district, and we’re off at our usual feverish working pace, with a little more dash of panic added in as we struggle to catch up with the previous day’s delay. We’re organizing a conference which will happen in China, of all places, in a couple of weeks, and so things were understandably hectic.

And so here I am, at 5:30 in the afternoon, sneaking in some blogging time while the fax machine hums beside me sending its gazillionth invite of the day. Talk about multi-tasking. Talk about coping mechanisms, te-hee.

I really miss those days when, at this time, I would be thinking about going home. These days, at this time, why, my day’s practically just halfway through.



I couldn’t believe it when I saw it, but here’s what’s in the banner story of today’s Philippine Star:

Lawmakers’ P21-B ‘pork’ restored
by Jess Diaz



Happy days are here again for both senators and congressmen.

The chairman of the House appropriations committee revealed yesterday that the congressional pork barrel fund — cut drastically two years ago — has been restored to P21.3 billion for all members of Congress.

Albay Rep. Joey Salceda told a news conference that under President Arroyo’s proposed P1.136-trillion 2007 budget, pork barrel funds have been restored to P70 million per congressman and P200 million per senator.

And here’s the kicker:

“Given that 2007 is an election year, I think those are reasonable amounts,” he said.

Whaaatt??? Garapalan na ba talaga? Using public funds for election purposes? Everybody knows that this is happening, of course, but it was just a bit jarring to see it stated so cavalierly, almost as a matter of policy. Is there some convoluted or noble legislative-executive-governance-policy explanation here that I’m missing? I don’t think so.

Continue reading

exhaustingly satisfying… i want more!

We’re inundated with projects left and right, I haven’t had more than 4 hours’ worth of sleep at a time in more than a week, my allergies are acting up because of the stress, my eyes are turning red for no particular reason, I just received what arguably was my worst tongue-lashing at work yesterday which I haven’t really gotten over yet – all these are going on, and yet I just have to stop for a few minutes and write about the humongous food trip that was my Bacolod weekend.

One of my priorities was to go back to the Pala-Pala Restaurant in 18th St., and come dinnertime I dragged Mika and Nini over there to partake of a delightful – and, admittedly, excessive – feast. There were three of us, and we ordered sinigang, calamares, sisig, and grilled tanigue (at least I think it was tanigue. Can’t remember. It was a heady time). The sinigang came in this humongous bowl one can practically swim in – and while I preferred the sinigang I had the first time I came there (different kind of fish maybe. Plus I didn’t do the ordering that time), it was still marvelous. My favorite was the grilled fish. And oh, we had gallons of the bottomless iced tea, served diligently by the ever-attentive waiters who kept filling up our glasses, until Nini finally said, in an almost tearful voice, “Tama na po,” to the waiter who asked us if we wanted some more.


Having had our fill of the dinner, we headed out to the next destination in the agenda: Calea, located just around the corner from the Pala-pala. We knew we were too full from the dinner, and realized we should have paced ourselves, but we just couldn’t miss going to the city’s most famous dessert place (thanks again for the directions, jules!). And oh. my. god. When we got to the place we spent like ten minutes just gushing over the display at the counter, going back and forth from the main counter to the refrigerator display, just exclaiming “wow!” “gosh!” “pretty!” and more of such inanities. You’d think we’ve never seen cakes in Manila. Of course we have. It was just, I don’t know, special. The giddines was just slightly marred when the waitress stopped us from taking photos of the counter display. My mouth, which was already opened and gaping from all the gushing, fell open a bit more as I was struck speechless for a moment. Bawal daw. Okay, then, what about when the cake’s already at my table? Surely we can take pictures then, right? I think I would have stood there and argued about my constitutionally guaranteed right to take pictures of my own cake till kingdom come, but thankfully I didn’t have to because the woman immediately said that we could take pictures at our table. We finally settled on these beauties: Continue reading

in desperate need of chanel

I have no fashion sense whatsoever, I’ll never be caught dead wearing stilettos, and I eat loads of carbs – but nevertheless I thoroughly enjoyed watching The Devil Wears Prada.  Meryl Streep, as expected, is such a gem – that last frame is such a winner – she was so good one can hardly imagine anybody else playing the character. As for the story, my inability to even recognize designer names notwithstanding (I don’t even see what was so horrible about Anne Hathaway’s clothes prior to her fashion transformation), I was able to relate to some – well, truths that can be gleaned from the movie. 

  • On certain especially stressful days, gritting your teeth and muttering “I love my job, I love my job, I love my job” will not always work.

  • Coming from a very demanding boss, the I’m-disappointed-at-you speech never fails to turn you into a complete sobbing pathetic wreck. My boss is not exactly the devil, but – yay.

  • Work ethic-wise – it’s one thing to do what you’re supposed to do, but there’s a different kind of satisfaction that can be experienced from going the extra mile and surpassing expectations. 

  • If you don’t like the person that you’re turning into because of your work (or any undertaking for that matter) and you’re actually fortunate enough to recognize it, there’s nothing wrong with walking away. 

  • Going from size 6 to 4 is easy – in movies.

  • You can walk dogs, dodge traffic, take subways, talk on the phone – while wearing three-inch designer heels.  Well, this one might be a little bit suspect, but of course, I don’t know anything about it. 

Surprisingly, the movie goes beyond your usual chick-flick breeziness and actually manages to make viewers think, question themselves, and oh, yeah, laugh out loud in the darkness of the movie theater. Fun, fun, fun.

Alas, it’s still not enough to turn me into a fashion fanatic. Tsk, tsk, my girlie gene, it seems, is not only recessive, it’s non-existent.