Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Obama Hotline

No, this picture doesn’t paint a thousand words but it shows US Democratic Presidential candidate Barack Obama speaking on the phone while holding the receiver upside down which became the stuff of urban legend early in the year which of course as expected proven to be fake.

But this photo is genuine and this is a flier for a phone sex hotline. No, this post is not because I patronize those sex hotlines being advertised on late night TV but this is because of what the Democrats in Michigan re-defining the hotline concept in this year’s presidential campaign.

Here’s an excerpt of what the Associated Press reported the other day--

DETROIT -- A flier sent by Michigan Democrats featuring a photo of Barack Obama that urged voters to submit an absentee ballot application includes a telephone number connecting callers to a phone sex line...

Now, that's a real hotline to Barack, if you ask me.

Say again, Ooh- Bah- Maah?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Crazy 8

Allan Caidic, once one of the most feared shooters in the Asian Games as well as in the Philippine Basketball Association’s history, is also my favorite local ball player next to the Skywalker Samboy Lim. Oh yes, the number 8 is the Triggerman’s number.

On a parallel note, like him I can also hit those shots from downtown. I’ve won some moolah in friendly bets and also hit some game- winning shots in pick- up games, too. But no, just to crush whatever notion in your mind, I am not NBA- material that is worth your while (although my 3- point shot is within its standard range). I am not a qualified Liga ng mga Barangay hotshot either.

I can’t outrun the youngsters anymore and would find myself huffing and puffing just minutes into the intense basketball skirmishes that characterize the Filipino brand of basketball in my neck of the woods. I am now actually more comfortable in trying to unseat Richard Gomez as the image model of that Philippine clothing company that he endorses and I’ve been warming up the seat for the longest time now in actual B-ball games in preparation for that eventuality.

But this entry is neither about basketball nor modeling, but it is more about a higher calling, of looking deeper into somebody’s life, in trying to find some answers to some questions.

This is about what the Ladyship of 12th Sanctuari has commanded me to do, which is to make a list of 8 random facts about myself; a task that is quite hard for this mere mortal. So, I need to face the odds lest I will be condemned to eternal damnation in the form of not letting me lay my hungry eyes again on her wonderful and delightful gastronomic creations.

Although I live in Motown, Slim Shady I am not and will probably get lost in the dozens of strip clubs along 8 Mile in dangerous Metro Detroit. The Eminems I know are not Marshall Mathers the rap star (and his posse) but a bit more on the sweet side, the multi- colored M&M’s that I usually ingest if I happen to skip breakfast.

Also, I don’t wield the power and influence of those people in the City of Man running around town with bodyguards and riding in super-sized vehicles fueled by the power symbol of that lucky number 8.

Anyway, to make the long and winding story short, let me just re-learn how to count again. So, let’s go and do the 8- list, pronto!

One for the money…
I will never get rich even if I die tryin’ since I was born with a hole in my pocket. I guess you could say that I am not a boxer but an Okinawan practitioner, more at home with an open palm than a clenched fist. The word spendthrift really suits me.

Two for the shoe…
I don’t have a blue suede pair like Elvis but I am a certified shoe- hog. I have a collection that is more than the average Juan but less than the notorious Filipina butterfly during her time in Malacanang. But I am not a sucker for the dear and expensive ones. I buy my Nikes and Jordans from various online and in- store sale from Finish Line. My shoe mantra is- if it’s more than 40 bucks, I will never wear one.

Three to get ready…

Ready or not here I come! Yes, I am an impulsive lot and sometimes I get into trouble because of being one. I can’t say that it was all that bad since the rollercoaster ride was actually better than I expected it to be although I can honestly say that the road less traveled is not for the faint- hearted.

Four- tune…

This is not a misspelling that you sometimes find in a fortune cookie. This is about how I can carry a tune. They say that anybody can whistle but I just really can’t and it’s the main reason why I never dared singing John Lennon’s Jealous Guy even if I’m drunk. And 4 stands for the musical instruments that I can manhandle even in my sleep.

Five for Fighting…

I grew up in a tough neighborhood and “sport” usually means a way of settling scores by way of the fists. I cannot count in my fingers the times that I have found myself in those situations but I guess it’s safe to say that I've had my fair share of blood and bruises while growing up. Some funny lessons that I learned along the way-- that some people fight with their eyes closed, the loudmouths were always the cowards, and to always have a back- up plan if things don’t go your way including the age- old discipline of Bitbit- tse. He-he. Funny, but I’ve also learned through experience that the people that I fought against with are the same ones who end up being your trusted friends and allies that will also fight for you and along side you until the very end.

Six- pack…

This is not about my abs although I wish to have one like Bruce Lee’s or the Pacman in my own sweet time. A six- pack is a six- pack and it’s a good way to drown your misery or be high in glory. Nah, I am not that much of a drinker anymore. What used to be a penchant for hard alcohol in my youth is now mellowed by the fine taste of wine. Nowadays, I’ll pick a pinot over a martini anytime. But beer is an old favorite of mine. I do drink a bottle once in a while and boy I miss those ice- cold SMB. Someday, I plan to go to Bavaria and experience Oktoberfest, first hand. I do have a lot of tales to tell during my time with a bottle to pass me by and hopefully I can share them with you when the spirit in the shot glass wakes up.

Lucky number Sleven…

7-11. My Japanese name has seven letters and I was born on the 11th day of the summer in the year of the dog which reflects why many girls think that I am so hot- NOT! --Having led a checkered one half of my life, I guess "too hot to handle" is probably the more apt description here. He-he.

Although I can give the Filipino comedian Bayani Agbayani a run for his money in the waist department, he will definitely kick my butt in the dance craze that he popularized since due to my bulging tummy, it will be a struggle for me to do the crazy Ocho- ocho.

I could go on and on, ramble some never- ending trivia and facts about my so- called life but the royal edict by the ruler of 12th Sanctuari limits the freedom of this jester to excrete more juices than he already had. Be that as it may, I think therefore that the eight random facts about myself that I spilled here is fairly enough in this case.

Now, let's do the Ocho- ocho...

Note: If you're wondering about the photo above, click here and be amazed and enlightened.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Still Crazy...

In my mind, I’m back in the place I love the most, a place where whenever I think of, brings a lot of memories. Of sweet memories that will forever be a part of me no matter where this vagabond life will take me.

Back in the day, I never even thought of being in this cold, cold place that’s been my home for the last 5 years, most of all, of packing my bags, of leaving the old country for good and of being thousands of miles away from “home”.

I guess I am/was just a simple man, more at home in the simple life. I am/was a man with simple dreams wherein deep inside abhor the bright lights of the great country. That’s why for the longest time, I tried to shy away from its pull. But like the nymph dangling her magic potion to her unsuspecting victim, I finally succumbed to her allure.

And if you ask me now that if I could turn back the hands of time and do it all over again, would I still do it the same way? Yeah, sure. I don’t know. Maybe. Who knows? Who cares?

I had my reasons back then and I still have my reasons now.

But in those days, I had this mind-set that you can always blame to youthful idealism; where you feel invincible, where the fire in your heart drives your every decision, where your own life is nothing compared to the common good, where everything you do is being romanticized in your mind…

…Until the sorry state of everything you hold dear stared back at you in contempt and disdain. And that’s the hardest thing to accept. Even now.

So, here I am in the wee hours of the morning, writing this little nonsense while stuck in the old couch in front of the old console TV, while under the influence of that sweet wine from Leelanau.

The place is so quiet and dark except for the light coming from this old laptop that obviously has seen better days. Alas, the weatherman proclaimed earlier that we might just get some frost early tomorrow. Nice. Too early, actually. Not good.

So you ask me now, what I have become?

I still long to be back in the old country someday: I still want to walk the lonely walk in the narrow trails of the barrios in the Bondoc Peninsula; I still long to be around the bonfires with the the peasants somewhere in the quiet nooks of the Cordilleras, Samar or Margosatubig.

I still love the simple life; the smell of fresh air and the orange sunrise, the sight of beautiful flowers and the sound of the birds chirping in the morning.

I still love the feel of a quiet moment, the serene mist that blankets the river, the feel of the cold grass on my bare feet, the distant stars, the silvery moonlight and the dancing fireflies in the evening…

And yes, I am still crazy.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Marka Demonyo

“Hindi rin ako nayamot sa tren gaya sa bapor ngunit ako’y masiadong nag-iisa kaya halos lahat ng aking mga kasama, nagsisilapit at minsan-minsan akong hinahanap. Mayroon tuloy akong nakilalang isang Ingles na may gustong pumunta sa P.I. [Philippine Islands] at dalawang Amerikano na doon ang tungo. Ang isa ay sundalo at madalas akong kinakausap ng Kastila at Tagalog. Ang unang tanong sa akin ay ang Sampaloc at ‘Mucho bueno ba ang puki Espanol?’

“Mayroon namang isang matandang Americano na sa dining coach ay kinausap ako agad ng Kastila. Nang sinabi ko na ako’y Filipino ay agad tinanong ako ng opinion ko about our independencia. Sina [not legible] siya na kung ako’y gagawing Presidente ay dapat na ngang maging independiente tayo ngunit kung hindi ay huwag nang ibigay kahit kelan. Sapagkat kung hindi rin ako gagawing presidente o emperador ay hindi mawawala ang partido ng mangkukulam.

“Bago kami makaraan ng Salt Lake ay nakakita ako ng mina at conejo.

“Ang hindi ko gusto ay ang aking pagtulog. Magbuhat Chicago hindi na ako nakatikim ng lower berth. Maraming Amerikanang magaganda ngunit walang libre banat.

“Kahapon ng hapon pinasial ko ang city sa bus. Nakita ko ang Cliff House, Golden Gate, Presidio, etc.

“Kaninang umaga higit na tatlong oras ako sa Museo sa Golden Gate. Very poor ang Museo. Dito pinapakilala ng Amerikano ang kanilang ignorance in art taste. Sa sculpture room wala akong napili kundi dalawa o tatlo (ang isa’y itong postal). Halos lahat na ay amanerado tila mga yari ng isang fabrica de marmol o escultura para restaurant o pangadorno sa mga salon de club.

“Tumagal lamang ako ng konti sa room ng last War at sa Spanish-American War. Dito ko nakita ng ilang nauukol sa Revolucion Filipina, etc.etc.

“Pag-alis ko sa Museo ay nabasa akong mabuti at gutom na gutom ako at natae ako ng matigas.

“Kamusta na lang sa kaluluwa mo."

--Excerpts from the letter Fernando Amorsolo wrote to his buddy Guillermo Tolentino about his US trip in the 1900s. I nicked ‘em from Ambeth Ocampo’s Inquirer Column.

They say that you can get a glimpse of a person's soul by reading his writings. The letter in a way, gave us a piece of the esteemed painter’s mind. He-he.

The Philippines' first National Artist in painting known for his beautiful portraits and evocative rural landscapes also had a hand behind the famous and ubiquitous Ginebra San Miguel logo that portrays “St. Michael Vanquishing the Devil” although if you’re a member of the “tumbang- baso” gang, you can argue that it's always the other way around once the spirit of that stainless liquid find its way into your bloodstream.

Anyway, if I am in Manila, I will not miss this exhibit dubbed “His Art, Our Heart- The Amorsolo Retrospective” that showcases the master’s works in various museums that runs until next year.

Manila, Manila...

Friday, October 10, 2008

Let's Talk About S-E-X

Sex a 'hassle,' says 105-year-old virgin

Agence France-Presse | 10/10/2008 7:05 PM

LONDON - A British woman who celebrated her 105th birthday this week said the secret to long life was celibacy, adding that she imagined sex was a "lot of hassle."

Clara Meadmore, who marked her birthday with a drop of wine at the Perran Bay nursing home in Cornwall, southwest England, also received a card from Queen Elizabeth II.

"People have asked me whether I am a homosexual and the answer is no," Meadmore said.

"I have just never been interested in sex.

"I imagine there is a lot of hassle involved and I have always been busy doing other things."

Born in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1903, Meadmore lived in Canada and New Zealand as a child before returning to Britain in her 20s to work as a secretary and housekeeper.

She served with the army in Egypt during World War II, and subsequently lived in London and New Zealand before retiring 40 years ago in Cornwall.

Hmmm, let’s just forgive the Lady…

---For she obviously doesn't know what she's talking about. :)

Monday, October 06, 2008

BBC: Harry & Paul's 'Mating a Northerner with a Filipina Maid'

If you find the film clip below funny then there must be something wrong with your head.

In this day and age, this kind of show which pokes fun at other people, races or statures in life has no place in a civilized society especially if the main aim is to earn some cheap laughs or two.

I say, SHAME on the British Broadcasting Corporation (or shall we say, the British Bigotry Corporation?) for ever allowing this sketch to be shown on TV. It may be funny for some especially for the kind of people who patronizes this kind of comedy being served on their laps by Harry & Paul, but for every decent citizen of the world it leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

If the people behind Harry and Paul think that they can get away with this particular brand of "British Humor" then they are mistaken for in reality the JOKE is really on them.

Ernest Hemingway once wrote in his book and I quote,
“Ask not for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee.’

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