Thursday, May 31, 2007

I Call Shenanigans

.:JGL Assembles:.

It’s a rarity, but we managed to get together the JGL last night. Well, except for a few notable exceptions like Charo and Sean, who happened to be in Warsaw.

The attendance list was: Diane, Sacha, Clair, Peppy, Ranulf, JM, Mario, and Mark.

It was awesome, especially hearing how Mark and Diane are now engaged, and the food at Little Buddha was great. Ranulf’s trademark lemon chicken really took the cake, and of course, Diane solving the Rubik’s Cube I had with me in under a half hour was most impressive, in my opinion.

That being said, the JGL lives on, and we resolved that hopefully, before Sacha goes back to Canada, we all end up going outside for videoke, like at Music 21. I think that’d be real awesome, and really great for bonding purposes….

.:And Then We Hear The Truth Trickling In…:.

Well, according to quite a few other people who were there during that fateful day, no punching has occurred.

I guess if your only shred of “evidence” is a claim by the supposed victim and a supposed screencap that could easily be photoshopped, then you really don’t have much of a leg to stand on. Given a pretty good sampling of people that were asked, everybody else whom I knew and were there at Mangaholix claim they never saw anything. Guess which side I’m more inclined to believe. Here’s a hint: there’s more credible people on that side.

There’s also the fact that comparing one’s self to journalists and standing up for the freedom of expression of the Philippine blogosphere is really a stretch. If someone beat me up for being a jackass, I got beat up for being a jackass, not for being a DJ. The person’s issues are with me, and not with what I do for a living or for a hobby. For me to use something like that as a rallying cry for me to say that I am standing up for the rights of the media is incredibly laughable and should be outright ignored.

If one is genuinely campaigning for free speech, then maybe they should put their money where their mouths are. For someone who claims to be the staunch defender of free speech and greater justice, the lack of knowledge or involvement in this latest strike against the freedom of expression is most certainly amusing. Talk about picking and choosing the issues that serve only their own agenda

I’m done trying to sit on the fence on this matter, though I may remain civil and diplomatic. I know all too well that this was really just a ridiculous and bloated publicity grab, and I am not amused at having someone stand up and appoint himself as a representative of blogger’s rights when he’s far from qualified to do so.

You do not represent me. You do not speak for me. In fact, how you carry yourself is your business, not that of the entire Philippine blogosphere. Nobody died and made you the be-all and end-all of the Philippine blogosphere, so I’d really appreciate if you toned down the rhetorics a bit and faced the facts.

In fact, I don’t want to be represented by you. I don’t want my name to be lumped with a category of people who uphold what is legal over what is ethical. I have no interest in having my name sullied by a category of people who choose to gain publicity by twisting the facts to their liking. As a broadcaster for years and as a post-graduate Philosophy major, I stand for freedom and responsibility, and it’s an insult to me and to all other free-minded people that this one-man crusade to besmirch another man is being carried out in our name. Please. Leave us out of it. We didn’t ask you to represent us.

In whatever transpired that day, you represented yourself. He represented himself. Please don’t escalate a personal matter into a crusade against an oppressor that is not even there. Don’t pull a George Bush on me, this is your “war” on “terror”. There are no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Your attempts at skirting the issues do not impress me, neither does your fancy lawyeresque talk nor your shifty dramatics.

I believe in living and letting live. I have no personal quarrel with you, but I wish to make it clear that I in no way support you or how you carry yourself online. I in no way condone how you ride on the coattails of others and exploit their association with you. You’re not going to get a rise out of me and force me to lose the moral high ground, but I will gladly call shenanigans when I see it.

An attack on you is not an attack on the Philippine blogosphere. It’s an attack on you.

I rest my case.

.:The Purge:.

Thanks to a certain group’s pressuring, it looks like several blogs got suspended with next to no review and only now is Livejournal trying to make amends for it.

There have been a lot of people writing about this latest purge already, so I’ll spare you the bandwagoning, since I wrote a day too late.

Despite that, I just thought you should know that I did join the Innonce Jihad community to express my displeasure over this development as soon as I got wind of this event.

LJ has apologized, but I think it bears repeating that this was irresponsible censorship. While I in no way condone pedophilia and other such illegal and exploitative acts, I also recognize that not all mentions of such a word mean that the people or communities who talk about pedophilia or the like engage in it.

In fact, why would you suspend a discussion group on the book “Lolita”? These are literary enthusiasts, not pedophiles!

This is almost at par with the Jack Thompson witch-hunt on video games following V-Tech. Jack was single-handedly shut up by the fact that apparently, no video games were found in Cho’s dorm. I don’t know who this group is, and I willingly give them the benefit of the doubt with regard to the nobility of their intentions, but I know for a fact that overzealousness leads to fanaticism, and fanaticism is almost never good.

These crusades for setting things right have to be tempered by a clear understanding of what you’re looking for. If your only course of action is an indiscriminate suspension of accounts, then I think you have to review your battle plan before you set out to “right the wrongs”.

What LJ did was irresponsible, and while the damage has been done, I am at least consoled by a sincere apology on their part. The organization spearheading this movement though gets no love from me for their Puritan ideologies that they insist on shoving down people’s throats. What especially irks me about them and why I choose to not mention their name is that visiting their site actually installs spyware into your computer. As if it weren’t bad enough that their misguided zeal has led to a lot of grief, neh?

I am not a ficcer nor a staunch member of any given fandom. However, even if I may disagree with what people say or believe in, I sure as Hades would fight for your right to say it. As a friend to a lot of people in various fandoms, I am one with you in this.

Banner courtesy of Roaring:

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Monday, May 28, 2007

Ummm... Yeah...

.:Ummm… Yeah…:.

So Jonas recommended a new sideline for me, as a message board poster.

I should’ve known there’s an obvious reason why they needed to hire a message board poster.

Anyways, here’s an excerpt from her message for me…

“You will be required to create 75 posts a day. Posts can include carrying various conversations with people on assigned message boards, promoting our content in a not-force-it-in-their-throat manner, asking questions, help carrying discussions on board and giving INTELLIGENT advice. You can even start threads. As long as you can carry at least 75 posts as your daily quota, you'll be fine.”

Okay, fine so far. I guess I can do 75 posts in a forum a day. That doesn’t sound too hard at all…

Then, it gets messier… heh.

“You will represent a porn company. You will not use your name or your nick but a pre-assigned nick/avatar (Oh, thank Gawd! I'd hate for them to know it's me... - Marcelle). As a poster, you are our messenger,disseminating information in our sundry list of messageboards, forums, and even contributing in Wiki boards. You will also upload content on file sharing sites (like Porntube, Yuvutu.com, etc.) for webmasters and surfers to know what the company is doing. But as a message board guy, this isn't just the messages you can post. When we don't assign you anything, feel free to post INTELLIGENT messages on the boards.”

Ummm… damn. Now, I’m flummoxed.

So I'm going to promote a pr0n website? Well, it's not exactly the nicest thing to add to my resume. Philo teaching assistant? Check. Radio personality? Check. Magician? Check. Marketing director? Check. Segment producer? Check.

Porn Promoter? Uhh... pass. I don't want to... dissemen... err... disseminate information about new products and upload pr0n, pr0n, and more pr0n, since at some point, I know I'm bound to get sick and tired of it.

The pay is actually good, and increases incrementally with each month, but fer crying out loud! I’m going to represent a porn company?!?

Still, if anyone wants the job more than I do, feel free to ask me about it...

Contrary to popular belief, that’s not something I’d be proud of doing, much less on a daily basis. Besides, video sites are blocked here in IAS, so even if I wanted to do the job, well, I won’t be able to.

Gyeh. I cannot possibly just write and write day in and day out about porn, seriously. I’m not into the whole genre, to begin with… I guess with stuff like the latest Heroes For Hire cover, my distaste for objectifying women and completely stripping them of their power is just really something I’m not very comfortable with.

Wow. I'm rallying against pr0n. Who'd have thought they'd see the day?

A Brief Update...

.:When I Look At Those Old Pages…:.

… it makes me wonder how I let things just get so out of hand.

Is it too late?

Or is it too soon?

Sigh… I can’t ever afford myself peace of mind, can I?

.:Verbal Jousting:.

Well, I guess it’s easy to shut someone up who refuses to shut up when you shut him down without having to resort to (Amusingly enough, very authentic.) ad hominem attacks on their person.

I have nothing to prove about myself. I’m simply confident in the fact that there are people who know better than to feed the troll and ultimately get them the attention that they want.

Freedom of speech is a double-edged sword.

.:Cloud 9!:.

“Hey you! how are you? i don't know which is your email address or if its even right. i get your texts and sorry i can't text back. thanks. they really brighten up my day. haven't seen your card yet. but i miss you. take care, bye mwah! love you”

I am beside myself with joy! My Beloved decided to send me an e-mail, and I can’t thank her enough for making my day…

Wheee!!! Marcelle so giddy!!!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

What What (In My Butt)

.:The Greatest Music Video Evarrr...:.

Ganked from someone named C.C. on MySpace...

This video is beyond description. It is a thing of awesomeness people should never do without.

Feel my pain!



.:I Need To Take A Chill Pill Myself...:.

Emotions are running high in one of the more controversial posts I've seen online as of late, about how one JM Chua allegedly punched one Mike Abundo.

Now, while I am admittedly only involved in this affair superficially as I was also at the Mangaholix event, I think I’m entitled to my opinion in saying that this matter has been just so incendiary and polarizing and there were times I wished everyone took a chill pill about it.

But then, I understand it’s gotten deeper than that. Notwithstanding the sexist comments that JM Chua supposedly “hits like a girl”, I feel that the entire issue over the course of the 200++ comments on the topic has been effectively derailed into another one of those discussions about Philippine Cosplay.

Quite frankly, it’s tiring already. I’m in no position to do a bloody thing about it, but I see friends of mine who get affected by this whole matter, and it can sometimes affect even people who aren’t supposed to be involved in this stuff at all.

Well, I guess some people do know all too well that controversy creates cash. Sure, you make a name for yourself, but at what cost? There are easier ways to get people talking about you without having to step on other people’s toes.

Well, having said that, I can leave my thoughts on it to rest and slowly back away from this whole mess. Back away r-eal slowly…

Saturday, May 26, 2007

More Dimensions...

.:One More Dimension...:.

People can solve Rubik's cubes in seconds nowadays. Are you one of the elite few who can solve four-dimensional Rubik's cube?

According to Wikipedia, only about 70 people have solved it as of January 2007.

Once you're done solving that...

.:Two Dimensions!:.

... it's time to give this work of art a try.

Five dimensional cube, bah Gawd!

.:I'm Gonna Miss My Beloved...:.

My Beloved leaves for Singapore tomorrow...

Separation anxiety ensues. Gah.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Randomicity On A Weekend....

.:Bushed:.

Had a lot of work to do, but all in all, I'm managing.

It's really hard working when you just don't feel any motivation whatsoever. Boarding

at these ungodly hours is really taking its toll on me. I guess you can't really blame me

if my blogging gets more and more incoherent until I finally get out of this rut.

.:Been A While...:.

Found time to hang out with Camy today,

which was pretty nice, considering how busy the both of us have been. Marketing Jonas and his comics isn't difficult, but getting

people to actually check his site out is a bit... challenging.

Talking to her has proven most comforting. With all the crazy stuff going on with me

right now, she ironically told me to "uncomplicate" myself, which is good advice, even

if it does seem a bit weird coming from her. We talked about stuff on my way to work,

and I dropped her off as she pretty much gave me sound advice in finding the fine line

between a lot of things.

I guess I just have to appreciate having a friend like Camy. Never a dull moment with

her.

.:A New Video...:.

Well, after buying quite a stack of videos from sir Bing, I ended up having another

video on YouTube.

I'll embed the video next time, or better yet, when I can direct all my discussions on

magic exclusively to my Magi-Kel weblog...

heh.

.:Separation Anxiety...:.

My Beloved is leaving for Singapore tomorrow, and already, I'm missing her so much.

I can't imagine how much more I'd miss her the moment either of us left for abroad...

sigh. I love her so much, and it does boggle my mind how we got to this point,

knowing all too well that when we started off, the idea of the two of us getting

together was probably laughable at best for her...

My Beloved, I hope you enjoy yourself in Singapore. I love you so much, and do stay

safe! I'm thinking of you a lot...

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Biorhythm Reading: Low

.:There Is This Deep Longing…:.

… for clarity.

There have been a lot of things going on in my life the past few days. From the rejection of my application at ADMU, to the fact that it’s been so long a time, and yet some things still remain the same when I worked so hard to change them, to how acts like these make me lose faith in humanity, to the fact that my Beloved is going on vacation in Singapore for a while by Saturday, well I guess I’m walking wounded as of late.

It’s a point on my biorhythm where I personally feel it’s at one heck of a low. Moments like these, I end up contemplating how the grass would seem greener on the other side…

But then, when I think about it, it really isn’t. It’s just really me trying to make sense of this crazy world I’m in right now, hoping that somehow, someway, it would all fall into place.

My Beloved, I’m sorry if I’ve been giving you a hard time these past few days. It’s been rough, and while I recognize it’s not an excuse for not treating you as well as I should, I still hope that you would understand that it’s just really all the stress getting on my nerves. I love you so much, and I know that despite all these setbacks, you and I are still there for each other.

Right now, my head is just swimming. I don’t know what to say, much less what to think. The only thing I’m certain of is that I love you and I do miss you a lot…

Sorry if I can’t blog more substantially today. I’m really at a loss right now…

It's A Downer...

.:Nice E-Bayer…:.

So I ended up not completing a transaction on E-Bay with someone despite the fact that I won his Mox Jet.

Despite that, we still exchanged positive feedback because he was so cordial in keeping in touch with me as we tried to thresh out the sale of the item that I couldn’t help but appreciate the effort he exerted in replying very promptly to me every step of the way.

Unfortunately for the both of us, PayPal didn’t protect him because the confirmed address is in the Philippines… I hate that.

But hey, I suddenly found myself saving money and now, I can buy a Mox Sapphire instead, which turns out to be more important to my deck than a Jet…

.:Check Him Out…:.

Jonas has a nice archive of his comics. I think you should try and check it out. You just might like it.

.:Still A Loner...:.

As the celebration here goes on, I feel that I'm still a loner to this day...

I just can't bring myself to enjoy this party here at IAS... I just can't.

I'm such a square.

Or maybe I was just meant to be alone.

.:Meeting Sacha Again…:.

Ranulf and I fetched Sacha at the airport this morning.

I have to say that while I don’t have much to say about our meeting each other again, I am very happy that one of my best friends is back in town, and looking very happy at this point.

I’m happy for her, and I hope that the next two weeks will prove to be rejuvenating for her.

We missed her. All of us here do.

.:“Prudence Is The Better Path To Take”:.

Quite frankly, this changes the rules of the game significantly. Getting the job was supposed to completely supplant the need for WAVE, and would allow me the breathing room I needed as I went back to the academe.

Now, the English department pretty much rejected my application on the strength of feedback from other departments. Or should I say, another department?

It is no secret that I haven’t really been seeing eye to eye with the Philosophy department in quite a while, even if I do happen to be taking my Masters under them. One of the biggest points of contention is that when I was a teaching assistant for Ethics class, I met someone who ended up being my girlfriend after she graduated.

I think it is imperative for me to make the emphasis here: after she graduated.

In spite of that, that whole issue became one of the main reasons I was not hired as a teaching assistant the following schoolyear.

It was devastating to me because it threw my whole M.A. plans awry. I couldn’t afford an M.A. on my own, so I had to stop my Masters indefinitely, and only now did I find a prime opportunity to do so.

The English department was a logical fit for me. I went ahead with the whole application process, and after the teaching demonstration and even the panel interview, the prognosis was good.

It was almost a foregone conclusion that they were hiring me. I started building my plans around that fact, and then the ill-fated letter of rejection showed up in my inbox.

The moment the letter started with the word “while”, my heart sank.

I knew I wasn’t going to be teaching this semester, and most likely even, this schoolyear.

You know, it would be easy to accept if I felt I wasn’t qualified enough. It would be understandable if I didn’t do well during my teaching demonstration, or during the subsequent panel interview.

But it wasn’t any of those reasons that kept me from getting hired. What the letter of rejection told me was that “further deliberation and consultation with colleagues in other Departments of the Loyola Schools strongly suggest that prudence is the better path to take”.

Hogwash, I say to you.

The obvious reason why they are rejecting my application is the laughable concern that I am at risk of dating my students. That has never happened, since I never dated my ex until at least a month after graduation. For them to use an unfair “precedent” that should have no bearing on my current status is a clear-cut bias that is only masked by the word “prudence”.

There is nothing “prudent” about shafting someone who has demonstrated a willingness and an aptitude to do his job. There is nothing “prudent” about some other department completely turning around one’s fortune by making so negative a recommendation that it is enough to override a strong demonstration and interview.

Didn’t the Philosophy department already do enough damage to my hopes in the academe by repeatedly rejecting my applications to teach for them? Why do they have to stand in the way of my applications for other departments?

Marcelle is fuming simply because he got shafted by a department who had no stake in this application. It’s almost as if they are actively seeking to screw him over and keep him from ever getting the kind of experience he would need in teaching.

At this point, even going back to finishing my Masters in Ateneo is in jeopardy. Do I really want to be in a place where I am clearly not wanted? I may just completely abandon this whole pipe dream of teaching altogether thanks to the fact that my own home department can do nothing more than continue to hold me back.

I have it up to about here with this already. I simply can’t get a fair shake.

.:Don’t You Think It’s Time?:.

Don’t you think it’s time we let bygones be bygones?
That we just live again and ignore not what we had once?
Don’t you think it’s time you and I just moved on?
Beyond the hurtful words, and the metaphorical guns?

Don’t you think it’s time Plato had his opportunity
To prove to us that there’s still life after you and me
Don’t you think it’s time to see that truthfully,
We simply didn’t do right by each other, honestly

Don’t you think it’s time we let cooler heads prevail?
Let us not have our time have been spent in vain
Don’t you think it’s time we stop the pain?
Forgive ourselves… perhaps lovers we were doomed to fail

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Rejected...

.:Rejected…:.

=(

Dear Mr. Fabie,

While consideration of the recommendation of the members of your interview panel, of your submitted documents, & of the observation notes on your demonstration teaching had initially pointed out your strengths as a serious teacher candidate in the Department, further deliberation and consultation with colleagues in other Departments of the Loyola Schools strongly suggest that prudence is the better path to take. It is therefore with deep regret that I inform you that your application for a teaching position with the Department at this time was not accepted.

A hard copy of this notice will be mailed to you soon.

Sincerely,

Dr. O

M.R. ORENDAIN, Ph.D.
C h a i r
Department of English, School of Humanities
Loyola Schools


Sigh… more on this next time. Boy, do I have a mouthful to say about this.

World Comm Day And Something More Important...

.:It Was, Officially, Our First Month Together…:.

My Beloved and I celebrate two monthsaries… on 21, then on 28. Yesterday was our first official monthsary. Unofficialyy though, we are celebrating our 5th month next week. Hehe.

.:Delivering The Talk Yet Again…:.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Happy World Communication Day!

Last April, my talk at I-Blog 3 resulted in a lot of further notoriety for me in the blogging circles, for all sorts of reasons. In line with my imminent launch of the still-dormant Magi-Kel weblog, I’ve been pushing my magic to the forefront as of late.

The hope, as most people know, is to become sort of an ambassador of Philippine magic to the internet community, as I continually update them about the goings-on within the magic community in the country, from the point of view of someone who is not affected by partisanship, hence the insistence on not being officially affiliated with any magic group.

That being said, one of the people I ran into during the second day was Sister Ding Paloma, a nun affiliated with St. Paul. She asked me to deliver my talk for other sisters and some other guests at the celebration of the 41st World Communication Day, and I happily obliged since for the most part, my talk was really done on the fly. I only came in there with a bare-bones outline, and my own unique, *ahem* visual aids.

That being said, I got to the Pauline press in Pasay raring to go. I had even less of a specific script to go by as I decided to just do away with a Powerpoint Presentation to underscore how creativity works even on the fly.

There were three other speakers, one was the former station manager of Radyo Veritas; the other was a blogger who compiled a video library of 2,200 videos for education purposes; the last one is a dubbing director for GMA-7. Each one of us had different takes on the idea of educating the youth and communication, and I have to say I was glad to have heard their ideas.

Rest assured I’ll get their full names soon enough, because at the moment, my memory is really fuzzy…

Anyways, when it was finally my turn to talk, my talk went like this…

I started by telling them what blogging is about. By establishing to them what a blog is and what a blog can do for them, I then told them that given their objectives for a blog, they have to have two things for them to be able to sustain a blog with an intent of educating the youth. The first is foresight. The second is an ability to think outside the box.

I discussed at length about writer’s block, and how it can be avoided by paying heed to the Artist’s Way. When it all comes together with exercises like looking at something and seeing it as something else and the Morning Pages, I then told them that the culmination of that is you would be able to write with a force of will that will allow you to really make an impact with your blogging.

I noticed that I tend to go on a lot of tangents when I spoke, though. I had anecdotes about everything from Chuckie Dreyfuss and Isabel Granada to Chavit Singson and Victor Wood. It was funny, really, but I should really learn to outline my talks better in the future.

Anyways, I performed three simple effects to get my point across:

1. When talking about foresight, I used Max Maven’s Disposable Color, followed by his Nile Derivation.

2. When talking about thinking outside the box, I used Charlie Justice’s Prohibition.

3. And of course lastly, when talking about force of will, I performed Morgan Strebler’s Liquid Metal.

I had really powerful reactions from the people, especially during the Nile Derivation and Liquid Metal. All in all, my presentation worked well, and the magic got my main points across excellently.

After the whole bit, I ended up having several photo ops with the other guests and Sister Ding as well, and a few other people got my calling card for further talks in the future. Well, let’s hope that pans out well enough by then.

Biglaang Kathang-Isip

Two attempts at Filipino flash fiction. The second one is a trimming down of the original story, that I personally found too wordy for my tastes.

.:Makabagong Pagtangka Sa Biglaang Kathang-Isip…:.

Paalam
ni Kel

Hindi ko alam kung bakit ganyan na lang siya kung makatingin sa akin. Ilang linggo na kaming halos walang imik sa isa’t-isa. Nakahiga sa iisang kama, ngunit mistulang dalawang estrangherong magkasama sa iisang bubong.

Isang umaga, sa gitna ng almusal, bigla na lang niya akong ginulat.

“Ayoko na,” ang kanyang sabi. “Mag-eempake na lang ako. Aalis na ako dito.”

“Pero bakit?” Tanong ko sa kanya. “Ano ba ang kasalanan ko sa iyo?”

Nakita ko sa pungay ng kanyang mga nagluluhang mga mata na may itinatago siya sa aking malalim na sikreto.

“Diego, patawarin mo ako. Ayoko na talaga. May iba na akong mahal.”

Nagulantang ako sa kanyang pag-amin. Sa tagal ng aming pagsasama, hindi ko man lamang siya pinagdudahan, samantalang gabi-gabi siya kung magselos sa akin noon dahil madals akong gabihin sa pag-uwi.

“Ano? Paano nangyari ito? Saan ako nagkulang?”

“Hindi ikaw ang nagkulang, Diego. Ako! Ako ang nagkulang.”

Nanikip ang aking dibdib. Hindi ako makapaniwala sa kanyang sinasabi. Nanlisik ang mga mata ko dahil pinagtaksilan ako ng aking pinakamamahal. Hindi maari ito. Hinding-hindi.

Habang umiiyak siya at unti-unting naglalakad papunta sa kwarto para mag-empake, kinuha ko na ang kutsilyo mula sa kusina.

Nandilim na ang aking paningin.

Paalam, mahal. Paalam.



Si Bantay
ni Kel

Mga ilang buwan ko na ring nakikita ang tutang iyan sa pet shop. Araw-araw, dumadaan ako sa harap, at nakikita ko siya sa bintana. Nakakaaliw siya. Hitsura niya tila’y nangungusap sa aking bilhin ko siya at iuwi.

Sa unang pagkakataon na napag-ipunan ko na rin, binili ko rin siya. Isa siyang Beagle na maliit lamang at nakakaaliw pagmasdan. Ang amo ng dating. Tila ‘di makabasag-pinggan. Ngunit bibung-bibo kung makipaglaro sa sandaling nakarating siya sa bahay. Mabait at maasahan si Bantay.

Ang naisip ko lang ay kung makakasundo niya ang aking pusa, si Sofia. Nabubuwisit man ang mga kasambahay ko dahil sa hilig ni Sofiang mangalmot, mahal ko pa rin siya. Minsan, naiisip ko, baka ako ang alaga niya, at hindi siya ang alaga ko.

Natakot akong baka kung ano ang gawin ni Bantay kay Sofia kapag nagkasama sila, subalit noong unang pagkakataong nagkasama sila, si Sofia pa mismo ang nangalmot kay Bantay, at ang kawawang aso pa ang tumakbo sa isang sulok, ni hindi man lamang tumahol.

Ngayon, kailangan kong lumuwas ng Maynila upang magtrabaho. Kailangan kong iwan ang isa sa kanila.

Narito si Sofia: ang pusang hindi maunawaan. Hindi siya gusto ng mga tao, subalit natuto na rin akong pagtiyagaan siya. Narito si Sofia, ang aking “amo”, kung siya lamang ang masusunod.

Narito naman si Bantay: napakalambing na aso. Napakabait, at handa akong ipagtanggol sa kapahamaka. Narito si Bantay, na tila’y nangangakong ako’y hindi niya iiwan o pababayaan.

Madaling magpasya kung sino ang aking dadalhin sa Maynila.

Pasensya na, Bantay.

Saturday Recap...

.:Mangaholix Explosion…:.

Mall Of Asia was where the launch of Mangaholix, a new Philippine-made manga magazine, happened.

It was a load of fun, as I was part of the IAS delegation, and although I was so underslept and all, I still found the time to hang out there and just really have a good time for the most part.

There was a cosplaying event, as expected, and of course, one of the judges was Alodia, and that caused quite a photo-op frenzy throughout the event whenever she was visible.

All things considered, this was a good event, but there weren’t too many costumes that stood out. Is it just me or am I just seeing too many repeats of the same costumes? The ones that get the biggest reactions (LotR, Mecha, etc.) seem to all look alike, and most of the best cosplayers worked with the strength of their personality, not just with the costume. To their credit, that’s a good thing, though. I especially loved the group cosplay presentation of the Street Fighter group who really wowed the crowd with their presentation, even if their costumes were not necessarily the most stunning of the lot.

I took the time out to do a bit of street magic here and there, and I did get some pretty good reactions from performing Liquid Metal and my Ambitious Card routine. Surprisingly, the Lightning Box didn’t really get the reactions I hope.

Now, the obvious question would be, why the Hades is Kel doing street magic in an anime convention? Well, in my opinion, it’s mainly because I like the audience I work with. You have the perfect mix of skeptics, hecklers, captive audiences, and outright fans. With all the people approaching cosplayers for pictures and autographs, it’s nice to have someone approach them to entertain them and not the other way around, which is my widdle contribution to the Philippine cosplaying community, since I don’t cosplay myself.

That being said, days like this remind me that I really ought to purchase a camera for myself soon. I should really upload pictures of the event, since I had loads of fun with the people there.

Hanging out with the IAS people definitely made my day, as they kept me sane in the face of all the crazy stuff that’s been going on. I was running on pure energy that day, as I was awake for almost two straight days, just doing work.

All in all, the day went pretty well. Here’s hoping though that I would finally shake off that nervousness I get when trying to perform for someone. I take too much time standing there and waiting for the right moment until my potential specs finally do walk away. Happens way too often for my tastes…

.:The Sequel…?:.

The calm before the storm that was The Challenge Of The Super-Duper Friends is upon us.

Fortunately or unfortunately, the next big thing won’t be a direct sequel, but another parody, so it seems.

Well, let’s see if we can work the old marketing magic back on it when the time comes.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Thoughts And Love...

.:What A Long Day...:.

While it's true I've been having loads of fun with Gia when we go on the air, the fact of the matter is that I am still dissatisfied with where I am in the radio industry. What really gets to me is that they would schedule a meeting that is horrible for the graveyard jocks.

What compounds this is that prior to this meeting, I had an agreement with management that a meeting at this time means a free pass for me to not board on the day in question.

With them ignoring that, well, there you go.

Nonetheless, Jean and I are pretty happy with how our show has been going lately. The rapport we have is definitely interesting to say the least, and not too many people can fault is with how real we are when we go on the air.

.:Monthsaries Are Important...:.

My Beloved believes monthsaries aren't that important. To me, they are.

You know why?

Because with each monthsary that we have, it means I've actually managed to survive another "time of the month" for her.

You have no idea how moody she can get during that time... =P

I love you, my dearest! (Saying "I love you, my Beloved" just sounds weird.)

.:She'd Fight For Me...:.

One thing I will forever treasure from my Beloved is the fact that lately, she's been practically unfazed whether or not her mom would find out about us.

As you all know, my Beloved and I kind of have to keep our relationship a secret from her family for a variety of reasons, so when she told me that if her mom found out and they asked her to leave home, she'd gladly pack her bags and go, I melted on the spot.

I guess I can never quite underscore how grateful I am that she feels this strongly about us. It feels wonderful to know that she cares about this relationship enough to want to fight for it now. Never in my life did I feel this conviction in the face of adversity from someone I love.

No words can express my happines..

Thursday, May 17, 2007

I give up.

You win.

Congratulations.

Finally, I Managed To Be Coherent For Long Enough...

Expect another post or two soon as well... one about politics, the other about my Beloved, and maybe even a third.

.:Wave-oke Wednesdays!:.

Just because we felt it, Gia and I decided that we should just go ahead and sing along to the songs we're playing.

Yes. On the air.

It's a riot, to say the least. Gia and I are having a blast with this new little development that will definitely get people talking, for better or for worse. Gia sang "You're In Love" by Wilson Phillips, while I tried my hand at "When I Met You" by APO Hiking Society.

That being said, we only sang a few lines of the song, really.

W-ell, this is assuming it does catch on, really. And before I leave WAVE, obviously. But I don't think that's gonna happen, truth be told. We know that much...

.:The Nail In The Coffin:.

Joe The Mango has already relinquished his position as station manager of WAVE, and has turned it over to the former program director.

I think they couldn't have done a dumber thing, to be honest.

The man is a lot of things, but leadership material is not one of them. Not only does he not look the least bit presentable as a station manager, he is also, pardon my saying so, a blithering idiot.

You see, I'm not saying *I* should be the station manager, or Hades, even program director. I'm about as good as gone from WAVE, to begin with. What I'm trying to hint at is that quite frankly, the current guy leading the charge for WAVE is not competent enough to do the job. He is not something you'd be proud to show as the man in charge of WAVE. Neither is he the one you'd turn to if you wanted to wow people over through a presentation for the station.

I've been working for WAVE for going on three years already, and as I see myself being repeatedly bypassed for a better timeslot while I've been languishing in the graveyard shift, I felt less and less enthusiastic about the station.

Clearly, they weren't giving enough respect to the people in the graveyard shift, simply by virtue of their timeslot. Their opinions apparently don't matter, nor does it have any relevance to them no matter how well the graveyard people perform simply because they are little more than second-class citizens. Their welfare is merely an afterthought to this station, even if one of their jocks is actually anemic and therefore should not even be medically cleared to do graveyard.

I've given up so much for WAVE that it irks me how little I've been accorded for it. From choosing them over QTV-11 when I was there, to giving them ideas for their student DJ program relaunch, I've been there. Yet what happens? For starters, I'm still stuck at the same salary as I started with three years ago. To top it all off, I'm not even going to be involved with the damned student DJ program despite all the time and ideas I've invested into the relaunch.

The straw that broke this camel's back is when they decided to "reshuffle" the jocks' timeslots, only for me to discover that the timeslot I lobbied to get is being handed to somebody else... and I wasn't even asking for primetime.

I'm tired of all this politicking in WAVE. I joined this station and stayed loyal to this station for long enough in spite of the fact that I grew up on RX 93.1 all these years. I didn't step on any toes, and in return, I was walked all over.

Well, now, my days of giving my all to this station are done. Whether or not I remain with this company, I have no desire to render the best service I can for them, and am merely in it for the pitiful but reliable money. That is, unless I find something far more worth my time.

I have valid and undeniably plausible gripes with WAVE. I've had enough, and it's high time they realized that they are losing one of the few people in the station capable of doing anything creative at all.

Oh. And if this stupid computer I'm typing from now isn't hanging every five or so minutes, itsstupidspacebargetsstucktomakeupforit.

Gah.

.:Finally, Under My Belt...:.

Well, last Friday was my teaching demonstration, where I was going to take over Dr. Orendain's class and go over some poems for the students. Poetry, especially analyzing poetry, is far from my strongest suit, but nonetheless, I went ahead with it anyways.

I had three poems to take up, all with a feminist slant... "Revolt from Hymn" and "Querida" by Angela Manalang-Gloria, and "I,Your Wife", albeit I forgot who the author was on that one.

It wasn't easy, because I needed to put my neck on the line and really offer an interpretation for each poem, and the moment I make a single mistaken interpretation, then I would pretty much be screwed.

That being said, I won't go into length over how I went over the poems anymore, but I know I really captivated the class' attention, and even managed to work in a bit of magic as I went over the lesson, methodically at that.

I ended with having them compose a quick freeverse based on the theme of "empowerment". All in all, the class seemed to enjoy the whole bit, and I think for the most part, it worked.

.:The Interview...:.

During the post-panel interview, I felt I did particularly well in addressing the worries of the faculty. I noticed though the funny discovery that one of the "students" I called on during my teaching demo turned out to be one of the teachers who grilled me during the panel interview.

After the panel, I had a one-on-one interview with Dr. O where she brought up her worry about me and the prospect of dealing with impressionable female students. I assured her that at this point in my life, that is definitely a non-issue. She wasn't the only one I had to assure about that fact, though...

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Whetting Your Appetite...

.:Belated Happy Mother's Day!:.

Well, mother's day has come and gone, so I'm glad I spent time with my family on that day.

It was great, although lying down on an inflatable bed felt mighty weird...

.:I Know, I Know... Backlogged:.

Well, I owe you guys a ton of updates, to be sure. That being said, I have to apologize because I've been buried in work so much lately, thereby explaining the lack of updates.

Nonetheless, I'll give you an account of my teaching demo AFTER the decision regarding whether or not they're hiring me is handed down.

.:Security? Hah!:.

I am horrified that the concept of WAVE 89.1's "security" is stationing a security "guard" inside the station who is asleep the entire time I'm doing my show.

Tell me again how I'm supposed to feel "secure" when I have to deal with crud like this day in and day out.

.:Playing Angels...:.

Well, Kathy and I hung out with Hrbs today since his wife, Krisette, who's on a Writer's Workshop in Dumaguete.

It's been cool hanging out with them, especially when you see how much Kathy has changed since she got with her boyfriend. She's just all the better for it.

.:Some People Take Things Way Too Seriously...:.

Avengers: The Initiative #2 featured a measly four panels depicting George W. Bush on the comic, but starting page 12, this thread at Comic Book Resources shows how some people can just really take things seriously, expecting nothing but a negative portrayal of Bush, when even the portrayal in question is itself open to interpretation.

The guy in the thread hijacks the discussion into one over politics, going as far as assailing Dan Slott, the writer, as being partisan and indulging in political propaganda in favor of Bush. What utter hogwash.

.:I Hate That I Didn't Get To Vote...:.

... Gah. I guess I'm happy I managed to talk ample politics and hopefully influence enough voters to make some more educate votes, then.

It's the least I could do...

.:Success!:.

After three weeks, it can be said that The Challenge Of The Super-Duper Friends experiment was a huge success.

That being said, expect the next project to be in the same vein, albeit most likely on a different topic now...

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Off My Chest...

Teaching demo done, and it was a blast.

I have high hopes on this one.

More on this next time. Maybe tomorrow, if I'm lucky.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Politics Again...

.:Chiz Facts!:.

According to Chiz Escudero facts, si Chiz lang ang tinantanan ni Mike Enriquez.

Find out about these and more facts on their site. As most red Magic players would say, “Chiz is the answer”.

You know, I was tempted to be shameless, but I decided that it’s in poor form to throw around a Challenge Of The Super-Duper Friends link just because I can.

.:When I Think About It…:.

Well, Victor Wood may still not be getting my vote this coming elections, but he made a valid point that I hope would be a springboard for people to follow up on.

During last Sunday’s episode of Isang Tanong, it was clear that Victor Wood was unaware about a lot of issues plaguing the country. He was working under a very simplistic but practical platform of reforming the electoral system, and I must say that he had a valid point.

Currently, we have mid-term elections, the presidential elections, and the Barangay elections. I’m not fully aware if the SK elections are a different part of the equation, but every single election is costly and daunting as an undertaking. Billions of pesos are being spent for logistics, and it would make the most sense if these expenses are minimized to a once-every-six-years event, as Victor Wood has been harping on.

Let’s face it. The biggest winners in these coming elections are the TV networks where we see television ads like the infamous GaGO Ang Oposisyon ad, among other stellar examples of advertising.

With Over a hundred million being spent by Pichay alone in his campaigns, wouldn’t it make sense if a mere fraction of that instead went to some cause? A mere 1% of 100 million bucks is a million bucks. Imagine if that went to some charity instead of for more political ads.

It’s ridiculous how this campaign turned into a money game, where the biggest amount of money is now being spent on advertisement, and it’s not even merely for pushing for awareness about a candidate. A good chunk of these advertisements are for bringing down other candidates, in fact. It’s tacky, especially since the attacks have been mainly ad hominem, and issues only come second.

Victor Wood made a valid point. Over a hundred million from Pichay alone. Split that between the television networks, and they just made a killing. Meanwhile, other candidates who may or may not be good but are lesser known like the guys from Ang Kapatiran are heavily underrepresented and unable to gain a foothold in the public consciousness simply because they can’t afford it.

One must ask, then… with this kind of money being thrown around, why is there such a big deal over a job that only pays a so-so amount of money? Regardless if the campaign funds are donations, isn’t this huge amount of money being collected clearly worth funneling elsewhere instead? Shouldn’t the government networks simply give free air time to all candidates instead of virtually killing the chances of people whose pockets aren’t nearly as deep?

Victor Wood will probably never win as senator. Heck, he won’t even win my vote. But he speaks the truth. There’s too much money being spent in elections. Money that could go to better use.

It Feels Weird...

.:After Practically Three Weeks...:.

... I'm sitting here inside the WAVE booth once again.

It feels weird. It's like I shouldn't be here...

Ah,well. That's what I get for having been suspended, I guess...

As usual, my brain is fried at this hour. Posting more sensibly next time, I hope...

Monday, May 07, 2007

Here Comes The Sun...

.:Spider-Man 3 Random Observations:.

+ The movie had awesome action sequences.

- The movie was too long but didn’t mesh together too tightly.

+ Topher Grace as Venom. Didn’t even realize he came from That 70’s Show!

- Too many contrivances that relied on people being at the right place at the right time, e.g. the symbiote, Brock and Parker in the same church, etc.

+ Gwen Stacy. Makes me wonder what Peter and Harry ever saw in MJ.

- Mary Jane Watson. Whiny, egocentric, and made out with Harry(!).

+ Music numbers.

+/- Peter’s emo-bangs.

+ Sandman’s scene with the locket.

- Spider-Man’s story of responsibility being diminished by the revelation that the killer he confronted in the first movie was apparently not the killer at all.

+ Bruce Campbell. ’Nuf said.

- Not enough of Venom.

+/- When Spidey used those pipes to rattle the symbiote, I was half-expecting him to say “Let’s bring on the pain. Let’s bring on the noise…”

- The stupid expository butler. You mean it took two movies for him to tell Harry this?

All in all, a good, fun movie. Unfortunately, it doesn’t have the kind of resonance the first two films had, especially with the diminishing of the power and responsibility storyline as far as Ben Parker goes.

However, you know what I think they needed? I think they needed to Samuel L. Jacksonify this movie. You’ll find out what I mean soon enough. It’s high time there was a follow-up attempt at humor from the guys who brought you The Challenge Of The Super-Duper Friends

.:Isang Tanong:.

GMA-7’s special on the senatoriables where they are all individually asked questions by journalists and fellow senatoriables alike may prove to be too short to pass for anything with substance, but it gives a genuine insight into a lot of candidates, and should be required viewing for anyone who insists on voting these elections.

Isang Tanong, for the past two weeks, has given a very good, albeit truncated, view of our current senatoriable field, including even the likes of Victor Wood and Zossimo Paredes, lesser-known candidates who are given opportunities to let the people listen to them and find out why they are deserving of being voted.

I only saw parts of last night’s episode, and I must say that I found Prospero Pichay to be very eloquent, and I felt that he had a very sound platform to work with. The Kapatiran faction was middling, as they didn’t particularly stand out when it was Zossimo’s chance to speak.

Victor Wood rambled on and on and simply did not answer any of the questions asked of him. His other fellow KBL candidates resorted to making backhanded compliments that were tantamount to taking swipes mainly at the media, and the other senatoriables. Cesar Montano was banking on rhetorics to carry him through the day.

All in all, if there is an archive of sorts I can go over, then I’d love to go over this two-episode special. I am all for more opportunities for the candidates to reach out to the people and let them know what their intentions are.

.:My Beloved…:.

It was such a wonderful time spent with you over lunch today. I know we have very little time lately because of all the things going on, but I’m glad I still choose to be with you and you feel happy that I do…

It’s too bad the halo-halo I got for you was melting, though… it’s unavoidable in this kind of heat, sadly.

I love you so much, and I really hope that you’d keep on feeling that I am becoming the kind of boyfriend you envisioned I could be for you…

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Finally, A Sensible Post!

.:Today’s Krisette’s Birthday:.

Happy birthday! Drunk videoke = sober videoke. Apparently so, since I hardly drank anything alcoholic that night, and neither did Peppy. Hehehe.

Kathy pretending to be crying to surprise Krisette at their place was a brilliant touch, though.

.:Two:.

I guess I can only continue feeling disappointed this is how it all ends up being. One would think that after all this time, things would be a lot less messy than they still are.

There’s still a lot of matters to be put to rest. That much, I recognize. At least, things aren’t that bad…

Let sleeping dogs lie.

.:My Mind Is Boggled…:.

Thanks to Peppy, I am now educated on the finer points of the Alanis version of “My Humps”. Gasp.

It’s quite a hoot, truth be told.

.:To My Beloved…:.

Thank you for being patient with me despite all the crap you and I have been going through lately. I love you so much, and I hope that someday, you and I can overcome all these obstacles and prevail in love.

.:The Tirade Against Scapegoatism:.

“If there is a lesson to be taken away from this horror, it is that we, as a society, are becoming too tolerant of the aberrant . . . At Blacksburg on Monday, we learned that there is such a thing as too much tolerance.”

- Pat Buchanan, Too Much Tolerance

You see that bus? Common sense is on that bus, and it’s speeding far, far away.

I got this story courtesy of a blog I found a week ago while trying to plug awareness for the Challenge Of The Super-Duper Friends, and I couldn’t help but be struck at the idiocy of one Pat Buchanan, to put the blame on Virginia Tech on “Tolerance”.

From the same blog, I managed to discover that people have blamed everything from video games to liberalism to the fact people were too distracted by the “hoax” of global warming.

But this point on “tolerance” really just makes me scratch my head. I know I might be echoing Rick (The owner of the blog I cited up there.) when I say this, but if “too much tolerance” was a problem, what exactly were people too tolerant of?

Were they too tolerant of an Asian minority? Of warning signs of instability? Of autism? What? How vague can they get here?

What would the proper response to this excess of tolerance be? Intolerance? Should people have ridiculed Cho more? Should they have oppressed him more and hurt him? Maybe bullied him more and tied him up to let him know that he’s not welcome because he’s an autistic weirdo? Is that it?

We know that most killings and suicides within a school setting have occurred because the people in question were bullied or ostracized or loners. Clearly, people didn’t tolerate a good deal of these people, precisely because they felt alone. These people had their own reasons to do what they did, but what Mr. Buchanan seems to be allowing to fly over his head is the fact that the very lack of tolerance for their behavior is more likely to have caused them to withdraw more and more into themselves, where they found it in themselves to commit these horrible crimes.

Seriously, I can’t figure it out. How the heck can too much tolerance be the cause for V-Tech? If these people didn’t tolerate Cho by forcibly putting him away or oppressing him, don’t you think he would have snapped sooner? Heck, does that mean that any weirdo we run into who has behavior similar to Cho should outright be maligned and put away as well? What if they’re not killers like him? What if they’re simply autistic? Autism >< Psycho Killer. Yeesh.

It’s easy to put the blame on something like video games, or tolerance, or liberalism. Heck, it’s even easier to pick and choose arguments, no matter how contrarian. For example, because of liberalism, people supposedly become violent killers because of their mode of thinking. At the same time, liberalism also “aggravated” the tragedy because thanks to them, gun control laws prevented any of the students from V-Tech to carry weapons so they could kill Cho the moment he tried opening fire.

Wow. I’m a moderate, as I have both conservative and liberal views, but I don’t think that one side can turn you violent and turn you into a putz at the same time. For crying out loud, be consistent! Does your latest scapegoat make people too violent or too cowardly to do anything in the face of the violence?

One writer, a Mr. Boortz, was even tacky enough to blame the kids for not trying to stop Cho when he opened fire! How utterly tasteless was that? It’s just as poor form as our DOJ chief blaming that poor Peace Corps volunteer for getting killed because “she was too careless”.

Virginia Tech was a tragedy. It was a needless loss of many lives. The least people could do, be they liberal or conservative or whatever the heck they may be, is to simply respect the people who died and not use their corpses as stepping stones for whatever agenda they may wish to serve.

On a personal note to Mr. Buchanan, who really sparked this whole tirade to begin with, I hope that someday, you realize that tolerance is really the only thing that keeps people you offended with your tacky speech from strangling you with their bare hands.

Thank tolerance you’re still alive, Mr. Buchanan.

And please, please, please. Enough with this ridiculous blame game! Kayo kasi, eh!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Well, Whaddya Know?

.:Good News...:.

Well, The Challenge Of The Super-Duper Friends, as of today, has achieved almost twice the target number we were hoping to achieve.

Pretty awesome for a two-man marketing team, eh? Hopefully, this is the news that ensures that more of this stuff gets produced. Looks like we really have managed quite a feat, well before the three-week deadline, no less.

Let's hope that things keep going on the up and up, then.

.:Sugar High, Sugar Crash...:.

It never fails. I can never understand why this eternal see-saw just keeps on going on. It just feels so pointless and unnecessary, and yet it persists.

The more you push me away, the more I feel the need to exorcise demons I fear are rearing their ugly head because of our circumstances...

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

A Long Update To Make Up...

Up to now, I still haven't written my follow-up regarding Virginia Tech, Cho Seung-Hi, and yep, the new guys blaming something new, trying to sound like they knew how to prevent tragedies like these from happening...

.:Magical Malate:.

Last Thursday, I ended up hanging out with Honey and her band again at Malate, and here was the debut of Coinci-Cube, which I've been working on for a while already.

I've achieved quite a lot with the slightly updated routine. Now, with Coinci-Cube, Hallucination, and Taste Conditions, I now have three new and powerful effects to shuffle along and build a pure mentalism routine.

That being said, it was nice doing magic for the people there. One table actually gave me a tip, which took me by surprise, since I don't ask for tips when I do magic.

.:Fragmentation:.

My biggest problem with magic as of late was the sinking realization that there's a lot of factions from within, and it's so hard for people to get along because of a lot of fundamental differences.

For instance, classic magicians look down on "crashing", or street magic for no other motivation than fun. Crashers, on the other hand, are more in their element approaching total strangers than having people come and pay to actually see them.

Egos get in the way, too. It's not unlike any other industry, for starters, from egos to politics, and it's really hard to get in the middle of a clash among magicians, and I wouldn't be naive to say that these dynamics make magic unique, but they are issues that need to be dealt with at all times...

My dream contribution to magic in the Philippines is to find a way to bridge that gap by making the world in general see what Philippine magic is all about. At some point, I have to branch out, network, talk to other people, and figure out how to reach out and show the world how we do it.

I'm proud of the magic industry in this country, regardless of all the hurdles and all the in-fighting. I recognize it's not exclusive to this industry, so it's inevitable, but in due time, my hope is I can just bring this industry to the forefront through my writing.

If there is one title I wish to earn, it wouldn't be "the best". I simply wish to be "the ambassador". That isn't too much to hope for, isn't it?

.:More Super-Duper Friends Madness:.

Y'know, fact of the matter is, while The Challenge Of The Super-Duper Friends is fun and all, but I really feel that doing it in a Filipino context would really get people talking. Unfortunately, in this country, that's not necessarily a good thing, which is too bad, because as Eric Bischoff would say, "Controversy creates cash".

The video has been posted in a lot of new places lately, but still no new content. My boss has been stoked about making new videos though, so that’s good news for all people concerned. Nonetheless, you can see the video at this point in Revver, Google Video (Which reminds me… if Google bought YouTube, why do they still have this?), I-Film, Brightcove, and Boreme.

Still the same content, though. Nothing new thus far, but a lot of new ideas have been in the works, so hopefully, this thing doesn’t just become a one-hit wonder.

In any case, one can hope for a follow-up. That's the most important thing that could really make this work, truth be told...

.:The VTR...:.

Well, I had two. I was asked about working out to have abs for a tuna commercial, but the realization was that I have to deal with a... third of something people usually only have two of. Heh. I have a lot of other things to audition for, though. Hey, you never know...

Like after a hilarious time with Elbert, Alex, and Jonas at the office, I actually went ahead and had a VTR that involved acting. Gah. I think I did horribly with that one.

.:Warning!:.

I got outbid for the auction at E-Bay, but what I discovered was that being a bidder on an auction that you lose means people will message you through E-Bay somehow and pose as a chance for you to bid on the item a second time. From there, they'd ask your details, and hope to fish for you to give them your password so they can pretty much dupe you into giving them access to your account.

I can't believe how E-Bay allows itself to be this easily manipulated. The e-mail contains authentic-looking banners and links that allow you to contact the sender of the e-mail, and it actually seemed like a perfect opportunity for me to get the item on a second-chance auction. Unfortunately, it was a ruse. A really elaborate one.

Guys, watch out. Don't fall for the dupe.

.:Happy Birthday, Sean!:.

Well, we had lots of fun, having a mini movie marathon and lots and lots of food. Highlight of the day was the fact that yes, while the usual suspects were there, my Beloved (!) actually went to the celebration and got to know my friends!

I was especially chuffed due to the fact that all of them liked her. They were very happy that my Beloved looked very happy to be with us, and more so very happy to be with me...

.:I Belong To You? I Belong With You...:.

To my Beloved, a happy four months to us! You have really made a difference in my life... thank you for putitng the color back into my life, for giving me a reason to strive to be better, and most of all, for being there for me through good times and bad.

I will never forget when you told me that you were mine, and I am yours. You know how hesitant I am to call anyone "mine", simply because I don't want to sound possessive at all, and I'd rather err on the side of caution and simply just say I am yours, but avoid calling you mine.

Yet she told me something that just really struck me. While yes, it is quite a big deal to say someone belongs to someone, what really stands out is when it becomes clear that someone belongs with someone. With a simple word, I realized how special what we had really was. It's different. It's meaningful. It's something I can't quite help but be grateful for, knowing all too well that this is someone I truly love with all my heart, and someone who loves me so much in return. In my wildest dreams, I can't even begin to fathom how she ended up loving someone like me. It still boggles my mind...

It's easy to belong to someone. It's easy to be a possession and for someone to hold you and keep you. It's special, and there's no denying that. At the end of the day though, as wonderful and rare as belonging to someone, what is even rarer is when you belong with someone.

It's not everyday that there's someone you want to belong to because it just feels so right, because it doesn't feel right to be with anyone else. It feels so right, because there is not a single other person in the world you'd want to be with. It feels so right, because it seems like every single circumstance in the cosmos lined up to work in your favor, as improbable as it might seem. It's as if the universe conspired to make it possible, and taking that chance is the difference between a possibility and reality. It's how I feel that I'm simply not in this alone that really spells out the certitude in my heart...

Four months, my Beloved. Four months with you, and I pray that our love would continue to grow with each passing day.