31 December 2010

TWO FIRSTS: ME GOT FISHIE (WEEEEE)

video

Okay, so this is my first attempt to post a video in this blog. This one here was taken right by my cousins' backyard fish pond in Barangay Maparat, Compostela Valley.

It was the first time in my entire life to try fishing. And I was so glad I was able to catch ONE decent tilapia. I am posting a snapshot below, just in case the video uploading fails. Apologies for the quality, my phone camera is uber advanced.

One tasty tilapia for lunch

WHEN I'M NOT DANCING

I just want to post my latest sketch. I made it right before I left for Davao. Here it is, an image of me:


The drawing isn't quite done yet. I planned to render colors on it using water color. And honestly, I'm quite scared of how it will turn out as it has been quite a while since I've used colors, much less watercolor. If I remember correctly, I have only had two watercolor pieces ever and both were Photorealism plates in high school Art class. Hope this one will turn out okay.

Below are other drawings I did that I managed to take pictures of before dissolving into oblivion.

This is supposed to be a midnight scene. [Pen and Ink]

Photorealism (R) of a model from a magazine page (L). [Oil Pastel]

My then concept of self. [Oil Pastel]

My costume in our SJ White Party, thanks to Athea Baraquio for doing the henna on my body. [Pencil]

A copy of an edited photo of me. [Pencil]
I missed drawing. My hands are itching to finish my current project. Wish me luck!

28 December 2010

THE FUNNIEST ROUTINE I'VE EVER PERFORMED

I have just watched the video of our New Hire's presentation in our company Christmas party last December 10. For my blog entry regarding the event, click THIS.

For the link of our dance number that evening, click HERE. HAHAHA!! Laughtrip. Been watching the video four times now and I still laugh at our craziness. Will play it over and over again tonight. *big grin*

Thanks Owen Cometa for editing and posting the vid. And thanks Mr. Jeffrey Ballares for helping us put together the whole set.

----

Choreo credits:
Just The Way You Are - Jef Ballares
Single Ladies - Cathy Leonidas
Alejandro - yours truly
Starstrukk - Jef Ballares

26 December 2010

MR. AND MS. RUNWAY TAGAY 2010

One Tropa hosted an event that I considered as one of the funniest pageants I've ever witnessed, live or on TV. And this one here I witnessed live, thank goodness, I had a really good laugh that evening.

To complete our (Urban Elite's) goal for Q42010 to have at least two gigs, we said yes to the Runway Tagay invitation last December 11; the first gig was at the World Aid's Day celebration in Tomas Morato. So we went there as performers but I and my co-dancer Dr. Edith Lasanas were invited to sit as judges. We said yes, oblivious to the enormity of the fun that was waiting for us that evening.

Just like other pageants, Runway Tagay contestants have to graze the "runway" with three sets of outfits (creative, swimwear, and fashionista). Then the top 8 per gender category (male and female) will then be chosen. All finalists will do a final walk, this time in their formal evening attire. With that, the winners will be determined.

Since it was a runway pageant, the most critical criterion for judging was how good they sashay on the catwalk. The runway design was very narrow, the width could fit only one person, thus every contestant would have to wait for their predecessor to finish before they can start their own walk. The runway was shaped like a letter T and the material was frail, thus the candidates, while trying to impress the crowd with their creative poses, would need to be very careful as they tread.


The Runway

Why was the pageant funny? Well it came with a twist. Whenever a candidate is called onstage, before they do their catwalk, they have to drink alcohol. Hah! That's why it's called Runway Tagay.


First Round: Creative Attire. Three shots of mixed different hard drinks. The contestants were all glamorous, some have capes, some have wings, some glittered and dazzled, literally. Each one has his or her own gimmick to win the crowd's attention. Be it party-poppers, semi-contortionist poses, peculiar accessories, everyone brought something on the runway to show that they want to win this so bad.


Second Round: Swimwear. Another three shots of another set of hard mixes, courtesy of the house bartender. In this round you can see the alcohol's effects setting in as some of the contestants were beginning to show signs of tipsiness. Say hello to nipples, lopsided bulges, and other wardrobe malfunctions.






Third Round: One bottle of beer, bottoms up. Contestants bade sobriety bye bye. A couple of them even barfed on the floor, for all the audience to witness, and for all the other contestants to slip on... gross. Anyway, more wardrobe malfunction occurred. This time however some contestants were even aware of it but they could care less. They just carried on and made fun out of it.

And then there were eight. Per category.

Final Round: Five (!) flaming shots plus one tall glass of cocktail (Tequila Sunrise i think). The event became a drunken carnival. Me and Edith couldn't stop laughing our asses off. Some contestants were too drunk to even stand, much less do the runway. Some weren't able to finish their drinks. Some took off their shoes. And some either wobbled, slipped, or fell from the runway. What made me laugh harder was the fact that each contestant continued to beam at the audience, flashing their sweetest drunken smile, and fighting for that last ounce of sobriety, or consciousness to some, still hoping to impress the crowd. Man, it was a hilarious scene, you should have seen it yourselves.

Well anyway, the night ended with One Tropa announcing the winners. I wasn't able to take pictures at this point and I didn't even care who won. I was so full and satisfied and I knew that my night has been completed. Edith and I took off after we got our tokens, yummy biscuits from Marcs & Spencer.

I can't wait to watch Mr. and Ms. Runway Tagay 2011. Hope we'll be invited again.


------

Wait, if I'm not mistaken, the names of the crowned Mr. and Ms. Runway Tagay are Sigmar and Ella. Congratulations!

24 December 2010

MORAL: WHEN YOU TRY TO DIG UP THE PAST, YOU GET ALL THE DIRT THAT WAS BURIED WITH IT

I have just ended a phone call with my travel agent, Miss Glecy. I was asking her to quote me a trip to Boracay, anytime in 2011. Yes, I want to go back there. I have to. Alone.

Isko conquers Bora in 2009

Anyway, our conversation was cheery. I was glad that she still recognized me. We were exchanging courtsies - me commending her expanding business, she asking me about the new company I am working for. It was like keeping in touch with an old friend - me talking about how neat their website has become (view site here), she trying to pick hints on why I suddenly resigned from my previous job. She was curious since my work changes whenever I get in touch with her.

The phone call went on - me was haggling for cheaper rates, she telling me about new spots she discovered and would greatly reccommend to clients. It was all a string of positive exchanges until...

"So how's <insert your name here>?"

But of course she remembers you, dumbo!
She arranged our first Bora trip.

Me was dumbfounded.
Lightning struck.
Ouch.
Gloom. Gloom. Gloom.

<Entry Title>

18 December 2010

I NOW DUB THEE THINE

I have just wired the last two installments for my laptop. Weeeeeeeeeeeee!!! After more than a year in my possession, it is now officially mine. One hundred percent mine.

my Acer laptop

--------------------

I woke up this morning late, and limp.  But five seconds into consciousness I felt an odd rush inside that I immediately recognized as excitement. For the first time in my work life, I felt so excited to go to the office. Not that there's anything special waiting for me today. Nada. Just plain old work. However I was really excited. I wanted to see my reports right away, do some analyses, follow ups, and conduct some meetings. I was very eager to do pieces of my work, and somehow contribute to the company. What's more peculiar is that I am dreading the coming Christmas vacation. Just thinking about it makes me start to miss my desk, my colleagues, and even my work.

Hmm.. Maybe this is a good sign. Or not? Well whatever it is, I'm sure it means I am having fun in my new work.

Channeling good vibes to everyone.

Cheers.

15 December 2010

ELIMINATING BOREDOM

I just learned from my friend that you can play Snakes on the Youtube screen while waiting for the video to buffer.

How?

Heres the trick:
When you open a Youtube window to load a video (see image below), press any of the four arrowhead keys (< or ^ or v or >) and the Snakes game should start by then.


Did it work?

Enjoy!

13 December 2010

BRINGING VEGAS TO MAKATI


Two days into the weekend last week, my work schedule was packed with meetings with our counterparts from Hong Kong doing a roadshow for a new initiative in our industry. The whole experience was tight and a bit fast-tracked, plus I have to occasionally pitch in practices for our presentation and normal work that was totally unrelated to the roadshow topic. It required a lot of energy and effort but it was fine, since the finish line marked the start of our much anticipated company Christmas party.



The party was held at the Quezon Ballroom of The Makati Shangri-La, and the theme was Showstoppers, a Vegas-inspired night. Everyone donned their glitzy outfits, and some were even sporting new personalities reminiscent of the Sin City. As for Showstoppers, I had observed five that night; at the least these were the highlights of my evening:

First is the food. One should expect nothing less than superb from a five-star hotel, however Shangri-La was really showy on us that night. They prepared an abundant buffet of perfectly cooked dishes, it reminded me of a Swedish smorgasbord, only the food were edible. My favorites were the salmon, roast beef, seafood soup, some pastries and cheese, and the souffle. It was the first time I had tasted a souffle in my life and it was really good. I almost wore the same expression when I had my first lasagna back when I was seven.
Me and Melai from Finance

Me and Karen from Finance

(L-R) Me, Jef, Karen, Kim, Jane, and Bryan at the hotel lobby



The second highlight for me was the performances of our CEO. He started the night by putting up a band of his own, together with another executive (or ex-executive?) and a group of hired professionals maybe. They played groovy songs and they were really good that we weren't able to help but sashay to dance floor and jiggle some moves. Our CEO has shown everyone how good a sport he is, and a talented one at that. We applauded cheerily after their last song. However, he wasn't quite done yet as later that evening he had another performance. It was a hiphop dance number with the rest of the Executive Committee. Yes people, the normally stern top-ranking people in the company showed us their fun side. They were led by our Marketing head, Miss Belle, who I admit was really good at dancing, especially for her age.

the playful male new hires

Next highlight is without bias the best one that evening. It was the New Hires' Presentation, of course I was part of it. We brought the house down with our little gimmick. The crowd went gaga when us boys, with all our blinking shutter shades, grinded to the tune of Lady Gaga's Alejandro.

the foxy female new hires

Another highlight were the raffles and games. I think more than a hundred employees (including contractual and utilities) won cash and gadgets in the raffles, while each player got a thousand bucks if he wins in the games. Well, I can say that the company didn't just do well this year, but it also wants to make sure that the employees are well-rewarded. If you weren't lucky in the raffles or games, you at least have a sure cash gift like everyone else, which was credited in our accounts that same day.

The last highlight for me was the party after the program. It started a little lazy though as the house band commenced with 80s OPM songs, thus only few were dancing. The scene reminded me of the tv commercial of RJ Bar. *grin* However, when Ne-yo's Closer was played, all the youngsters joined in and the dance floor sizzled until the band bade farewell. It was a fun fun night that ended with a blast and i saw that everyone else was really having a good time.

A big applause for our company and congratulations to all the employees for a good 2010 performance. That's how Pru rolls. Job well done. :)

------------------

After the party, us new hires had a bonding at a cowboy-inspired bar in Greenbelt 3. Weng-weng, Mai-Tai and tequila shots completed our evening.


(L-R) Jef, Melai, Ralph, and Cleo

(L-R) Me, Karen, Bryan, and Jane

TRIO FEAT

This weekend was a blast for me. I got less sleep as I was out having fun three nights in a row. Just now, I finished watching Repertory Philippines' adaptation of Louisa Mae Alcott's Little Women. The show was unbelievably great, the performers were sublime, and the set was just cunningly designed. Not to mention the well-executed classic atmosphere, nostalgic of the best-selling novel, which was put together by the director Menchu Lauchenco-Yulo. The outcome? High-level finesse and artistry, and a sincere standing ovation from the audience. The show ran for two weeks, and sad to say, the one I witnessed was the final run. You may visit their website though for more info.

the ticket


The other two events I was in deserve individual entries as there were a lot of stories to tell. But since I'm too sleepy now and I still have work tomorrow, I'll just mention the two events. Saturday night, I was a judge and one of the guest performers in the Runway Tagay 2010. Friday night, the biggest of the trio feat, was our company's Christmas party. It was one hell of a night for me, and that's all I can say for now.

Good night.

06 December 2010

ANNIVERSARY

Today marks the day of our break-up. Can't believe it has been a year. Maybe because in the first few months into it I was too proud to admit to myself that I was hurting, so I didn't cry. I didn't cry even on that night we broke up. I didn't cry even when I got home after that. Nor when I was dealing with Christmas. You see, it irritated me to no end when I was carrying that heavy heart the whole Christmas season. And what hurts more is that I can see my family worrying about me as I kept on refusing to leave my room even when my relatives and friends were waiting outside, so excited to see me. That Christmas eve, I drank a few bottles of vodka and rhum my mom bought me, while hitting the karaoke machine we have at home, hoping that alcohol will somehow drown that heavy feeling even for just a moment - It didn't. At past midnight, all the other persons in the house including my cousins and visitors were already asleep, but I kept on singing and drinking and dealing with the pain. I finished around 11am the next day. Still I didn't cry. The only time I cried and grieved and admitted to myself how my heart still yearns for you was months after that, inside the restroom cubicle in my previous office. And it felt good and bad at the same time. I knew it somehow helped me lift myself up.

Today marks the day of our breakup. I have no idea when my grieving will end. But I am positive and hopeful that it will be soon. Can't wait to be where the bluer skies are.

-----

I talked about this to a lot of people because according to the books it will help me grieve. The most relevant advice I got though was this one:

If you have decided to move on, YOU SHOULDN'T LOOK BACK. You have to move forward without looking back, that's why it's called "moving on".

Maybe I am finding it really hard to move on because I kept on looking back. I am that kind of person, I always reminisce about the past.

*sigh*

Someday I'll find the guts to burn these material things you left here with me. I'm one step nearer as I have already gathered them and placed them in a plastic bag, ready for ignition, or maybe donation to the orphanage. :D

04 December 2010

KEEP ON POURING

My current favourite commercial is that of Nestea’s where a boy Nicos, portrayed by Neil Coletas, was fuming on how the girl of his dreams broke his heart. Below is the transcript that I have been fond of reciting together with Nicos every time the ad is being aired. :D


Mom: Nicos? O bakit? Teka-teka. Sige anak, ibuhos mo lang.
Nicos: Binasted ako ni Mattina... thru text! Ang sabi nya, “You and I are kindred spirits,”.
Sis: Kindred spirits?
Mom: Ano yun?
Nicos: Konti na lang, soulmates na yun! Hmf.. Yung ilong naman nya, to the left, to the left. Although ang smile nya... meron. Pero ang puso nya, WALA! Wala syang puso! Ito! Pinag-ipunan ko pa sa maliiiiit kong allowance. But that’s another issue.
Sis: Wawa naman Nicos... Haha.
Bro: Basted na naman.
Mom: Ssshhh...
Dad: Tama na yan.
Mom:  Sige Nicos, ibuhos mo pa.
Narrator:  Buhos lang ng buhos. Ganyan ang love ni Mommy. Ganyan ang saya sa Nestea. Bottomless.
Nicos: Haaaa... ayoko maging member ng SMP, Samahan ng Malalamig ang Pasko.
Mom:  Halika, hug kita.
Sis: Awww.. basted!
(end of script)

This ad never fails to make me smile. It is so heart-warming, so Filipino. I didn’t even notice that the model who played Nicos is that same irritating guy in the Voice commercial. Remember, “Absence. Wala nang Voice.”?



Anyway, here is another fixation I had recently. Not that I liked it but I can’t help but recite with the girl in the ad:

“Bawal-bawal ka dyan! Eh, so what kung gabi, magkakape ako kung gusto ko no. Decaffeinated naman eh. So makakatulog pa rin ako. Masarap kaya. Try mo!”

Sometimes I really wonder what fun do I derive from irritating myself.

----------------

Here is my ticket home this Christmas. *big grin* Finally, I am assured that I’ll see my family for the Yule. Sad thing though, to avail the cheaper rates I have to spend my Noche Buena here in Manila. *frown* Alone. *frown*

30 November 2010

RANDOM RAW RANT

I know you sometimes think that we look good together. And I'm most certain that we do. I know that because whenever you are at my side I feel peaceful and ecstatic and delighted and calm all at the same time.

You remind me that even if life is harsh, it is mostly about the happy times.

You made me feel tingles that I have already forgotten I could ever feel. Being with you makes me warm and light and juvenile, it kind of reminds me of my prom night.

You are like a piece of heaven sent to me as reward for all my good deeds.

Sometimes I imagine the two of us strolling at the mall, or have a good dinner in one of your favorite restaurants, or perhaps have a few drinks together while listening to a live band. And I know we will both have a good time.

You are someone I can be with in any setting, any period, any lifetime, and I won't be bored.

You just made me believe in weddings. And for the first time in my life I imagined myself wearing a groom's suit, feeling both excited and anxious to see my bride walk down the aisle.

But of course, in every story there's always a catch. For reasons only I can comprehend at the moment, I can't make you be mine.

So for now, I'll just live my life and let you live yours. I will definitely keep on looking at your pictures. And believe that I was behind that smile.




And for what it's worth, I think I'm in love with you.

OUTRAGED

Around 2pm today at Puregold Shaw Boulevard foodcourt, I wrote this down at the back of my softdrink receipt:

WOW! I have just finished ranting in front of my co-dancers and it felt really good. I was so pissed off that I wanted to let my angst out this time. Normally I will just cushion my emotions and kid about it to avoid channeling negative vibes. But this one is a different case. I believe they should feel the guilt this time. I want them to realize that it wasn't easy being in my position. I want them to understand that I was just trying to make things easy for everyone.

*sigh*
Now that I wrote it down, I feel bad for raising my voice earlier. I really don't like being mad. It's not one of my favorite things to feel. Nonetheless, I guess I still needed to do that.
Gotta go back now and work with everyone to complete the routine. Crunch time!

Sometimes, outbursts are a good thing. it lets you let other people know how you exactly feel. I actually felt good after my rant earlier. And I was pretty sure I made my message come accross this time.

On the brighter side, kudos to my team! We were very productive this weekend. We were able to put up a decent routine for an upcoming gig, the probably most significant gig of Urban Elite to date. Hope we can finish it and perform it perfectly next weekend. I'm excited!

28 November 2010

RE-BLOGGING

I initially created a blog in a different site. However, an alleged violation (by me) in their Terms and Services led to the blog's archiving and/or suspension. So I tried to re-create my blog here, but sad to say, I can no longer access my previous articles. (weeping icon)

I tried my Multiply articles just now but I also couldn't find most of them. The articles that were left are no good. So I guess I will really have to do this blog from scratch.

And with that, I would like to post these pictures I took while I was having dinner at home (included in my previous blog). I chanced upon these two cucarachas doing the nasty-nasty while I was having my daily dose of Mara Clara and Imortal. Immoral exhibitionists! Talk about taking gross-ness to the next level. (disgust)


Here's a closer shot of la cucarachas doing the deed.  (disgust again).
Well at least now we are certain that these creatures don't just undergo binary fission to propagate.

26 November 2010

MY TIME YOU TAKE


I was intending to write about the latest movie (3D movie at that) that I’ve seen in the big screen, My Soul To Take, and talk about how rubbish it was. However, I realized it was too crappy to be discussed. It was supposed to be a horror film, one of my favorite movie genres. Only it wasn’t.

Much to my surprise, I discovered just now that it was written and directed by Wes Craven, the same cinema legend who brought us the classic horror series The Nightmare on Elm Street, Scream, and The Hills Have Eyes. I wasn’t pretty much conscious during Freddy Krueger’s haunting era. However, the latter two movie series are some of the most memorable for me.

Rotten Tomatoes rated My Soul to Take a whopping 9% and commented that Craven might have come back from his filmmaking rest too soon.

With this, I’d like to post the pictures that I took right before I watched the movie. I was with my childhood friends Allen Jay and Allen Jeff dining at Teriyaki Boy at Trinoma.




Allen Jay resides in Valenzuela while Allen Jeff is currently finishing his IT studies in Cebu. He paid a visit to his now Manila-based family, thus the occurrence of our childhood circle’s mini-reunion. The rest of the gang didn’t make it as they are all spread out in Mindanao when this happened.




24 November 2010

TODAY IS THE DAY

FB Status: is oh so melancholic at the moment.

"going back to the corner where i first saw you, gonna camp my sleeping bag i'm not gonna move"

i hate my heart. it doesn't forget. how can it not? F*CK!!!

  


Someday I'll hear the word Central Bank and I won't feel pain.


Someday I'll go back to this post and I'll laugh hard at how pathetic this was.


Someday I'll bump into you at some corner and I'd be able to smile and not run.






I so hate myself right now. I wish I were a stone or something inanimate and void of emotion. Something dead.

IT WAS A BLUE SATURDAY

Last weekend was a momentous point in Philippine hiphop history. It was the first time that another group beat the UP Street crew in the most prestigious inter-school hiphop competition, the Skechers Street Dance Battle.


At 5:00pm the gates of the big dome opened for street dance aficionados, family members, schoolmates and supporters of the delegates of the hiphop battle. Waving their school banners and clappers, the crowd went berserk when their respective bets paraded at the start of the event, where twelve high schools and sixteen colleges competed. I don't have the high school roster but the college finalists were as follows:


Ateneo de Manila University- Company of Ateneo Dancers
Colegio de San Juan de Letran Calamba-Letran Street Dance Crew
De La Salle University Taft- La Salle Dance Company - Street
La Consolacion College Manila- Synckupado
Martinez Memorial Colleges-Martinez Dance Club
Our Lady of Fatima University QC- Perfoming Arts Guild of Fatima Dance Troupe
Our Lady of Fatima University Valenzuela- Fatima Dance Troupe
Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila- PLM iskolars Dance Incorporated
Polytechnic University of the Philippines- PUP Danz Company
Siena College Taytay- Rythmycs Dance Company
Technological Institute of the Philippines QC- TIP Talents Guild
Universidad de Manila- UDM E.Stars
University of East Manila- UE Extreme Squad
University of the Philippines Diliman- UP Streetdance Club
University of the Philippines Los BaƱos- UPLB Street Jazz Dance Company
University of the Philippines Manila- UP Manila Indayog Dance Varsity


The hosts were Iya, Shivaker, and another guy whose name I didn't catch. The judges were Georcelle Dapat-Sy of G-Force, Lenny Len (hiphop choreographer fresh from the U.S.), et. al.


Due to extreme excitement for my own alma mater I failed to notice most of the high school entries. But I remember how good the Aglaia and Claret dancers were. These kids are just setting the bar higher and higher each year. As for my favorite, Dance X from Xavier School, I didn't see much from them this year. They have always been a crowd favorite and have even won open competitions where they get to battle college champs and non-university based crews. But this year, I think they became complacent. What took my attention though, and I believe they were the single most entertaining crew that night, were the dudes from La Salle Greenhills. There were a lot of funny moments in their routine. My favorite was the Tootsie Roll(?) piece... "to the left, to the left, to the right, to the right". HAHA!! You should have seen it. Wait, try youtube.


The winners in the high school division are St. Paul - Pasig (3rd place), Claret Hataw (2nd place), and La Salle Greenhills (1st place).


The college event was heart-wrenching. Most crews brought it hard that night. You can see that everyone really eyed the top spot - no time to relax, no time to be mediocre. The winners are UP Manila Indayog (3rd), UP Diliman (2nd), and Ateneo CADS (1st). I felt bad for UPD as they have always been champions; well except for year 4 battle where they decided to take a hiatus. But still, they are the ruling dynasty in this competition. However, CADS deserved the win, it was a little obvious. UP Street just didn't take a lot of risks this year, unlike in previous years. And I missed that. I guess I'll be expecting it next year, I'm pretty sure they'll take back the throne.


If I were to judge that night though, without bias, my top three would be Ateneo CADS, UP Diliman, and UPLB. I have a couple of friends from Indayog and I know that their performance was really tight. However, UPLB (for me) gave a better performance and a better routine. But that's just me. Of course the judges thought otherwise.


Well, all in all, it was a fun night. Another Philippine hiphop milestone had just taken place and the bar has once again moved up. It was very inspiring for us audience. And as an alumnus, I felt really proud for our resident competing team who battled that night. I couldn't have wished for a better performance. I just wish we'd be able to snag a place next time. Any tips anyone?
 
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