Wednesday, March 30, 2011

city life 1

i was on my way to pilates class last monday night when the lady beside me in the jeepney nudged me.  i thought she was simply adjusting the way she was seated, and i let it pass.  she nudged me again, and i looked at her.  she was clutching her bag with her right, and the more she clutched it, her elbow would hit my left side.  i sensed something was wrong in the way she held her guard and slanted herself away from the man beside her.  the man would look at her looking incensed, and i felt she was daring him to make a move.  at first i thought they were a couple in a fight, but changed my mind when physical judgment got the better of me.  the lady could have picked someone with better looks, i thought.  so i hugged my own bag and prepared myself to jump off (i was seated closest to the entrance/exit) should 'something' happen.  i became extra alert and looked at the man, hoping his face would get imprinted on my memory should the need to recall how he looked like arise.

he was dark-skinned, skinny, had a white cap on, and looked a bit like, or a cross between, muggsy bogues and gollum in peter jackson's adaptation of the lord of the rings.  he was panget.  or okay, i'm sorry--he looked like someone who couldn't be trusted.

he got off at araneta avenue, and i heard the lady beside me say something like, "kapal" to which the (ugly) man spat back, "heh!"  she followed him with her gaze.

"magkakasama pala silang tatlo o."  i must have been daydreaming a lot because i didn't notice the other pangets she was referring to.

"nakita ko kasi may dinudukot siya dun sa ano (demonstrates by pointing to her side pockets), tsaka sa ilalim ng bag nung lalaki, kaya nilayo ko 'yung bag ko," she explained.  "ewan ko lang du'n sa iba kung may nakuha."

she said she was too scared to warn the supposed victim, because the criminal might hurt her.

if i tripped the guy as he was getting off the jeepney, what could happen next?  if i kicked him as he went out, would he come after me?  i really wanted to hurt him. 

araneta avenue corner quezon avenue.  a lot of people got their pockets picked, wallets stolen, and cellphones snatched over there.  once, a woman carrying a baby bag and her infant boarded our jeepney going to fairview.  as she reached into the pocket of her bag to pay her fare she found her purse missing.  she remembered a man near her before she climbed the jeep--she thought he was going to help her up then board the jeep himself.

deep thinking: how can we be "one" as a nation when you can't even trust other people?  who do we blame for this: the government for not doing its job (providing jobs, catching thieves, laying off corrupt officials, cleaning up its ranks), the church for failing to instill good values among its members, parents and relatives for crappy child-rearing, the schools for not giving proper civic education, everyone and everything else ?

i asked because it seems it's what people here are good at: hating and blaming other people (and circumstances?).  but really, it's what you do under those circumstances that matters, right?

(la la la.  i'm just wondering a lot these days.)

before i say let's unite by holding hands and singing "if we hold on...together", let me just say i really, really hate thieves.  i hope snatchers and pickpockets everywhere would get their eyes picked by crows, and their innards slowly, painfully eaten away by flesh-nomming bacteria.

Monday, March 28, 2011

march-ing on

My Lomo LC-A camera had a bit of a sticky shutter problem.  During the weeks of my denial of the situation, every time I took a photo, I would always try to see if the shutter clicked (the LC-A can be misleading sometimes), which explains the numerous exercises in photographic vanity.  When it was obvious that yeah, the dust and gunk from its years of existence finally got to the LC-A's shutter mechanism, I sighed and handed the camera over to Mike, who kindly offered to have his camera technician fix it.  The transaction went well, with us bartering the old-fashioned way: goods in exchange for service.  In our case it means I gave him a few rolls of Fuji Sensia slide film.  :)

Presenting to you my March in lomo, or, how often I took my own photo just so I could see the shutter open:

 cheeky morning on my way out of our "gated community"

 i think i was daring the shutter to fail me.

 lunch break snooze


 i like...foliage.

 at the dance studio. yeah.

 the poster ige made for my birthday, on my door.  curtain's shadow.

 the said curtain and the little kid who likes to hide in it.

 the little kid also likes to play with the little cat.  the cat is still getting used to butt-grabbing.


 buen and ige.

 the photo is upside down but i kinda like it this way. (too lazy to replace it)

 we had just come from our artists' talk at the Lopez Museum, and buen had this marvelous idea to get some beer at the foodcourt...


 oh, my birthday again.

 there's a fire

 behind right: the little jukebox that could!

 we're not too creative with "couple shots".  i think we're kinda awkward with having pictures like these taken.

chewy junior.  really good but i wish it was less expensive. oh well.

March is coming to an end (what a long but fast month eh?), summer's here, and it's that time of the year when work piles up and then suddenly it's June and classes begin again.  And I still don't have a thesis.  Better get my ass moving then. 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

i miss doing long exposures

one of the features of my (now defunct because of the busted lcd screen) panasonic lumix fs4 is the "starry sky" mode, which allows for a long exposure that can be set at fifteen, thirty, and sixty seconds (so you won't have to keep your shaking finger on the shutter button).  

this afternoon i came upon the website of photographer kevin cooley, and i was completely awed.  "holy--" i said in my head, as i flipped through his work.

the one above, captioned "Down the Street From Buffy the Vampire Slayer", made me miss doing long exposures and also triggered a desire to look for my old long-exposure photos.  they're online here somewhere.
the trees at blanc compound in mandaluyong

 the sky brewing something (i was walking home from work)

playing around with a flashlight (a.k.a. lightpainting on people lightpainting). it took us three tries to get the photo "just right" (even if i almost had my head cut off)

from my aunt's house. a van passed.

for last year's office outing, we went to a resort in the province of pangasinan, where fishing was allowed.

ige during last year's earth hour.

and that's it for now.  i'm saving up for a new camera that can take long exposures as well.  initially i lusted for the canon s95 (so pretty), but i *think* i would have to save a little more for the lx5, if i wanted to have the programmed long exposure mode (and more, and more!).  however, at the (saving) rate i'm going, i think i'll be able to have the lx5 as a christmas (or halloween?--i wish!) gift to myself, if stocks haven't run out yet. ha ha.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Why I love my Instax

It is magical.

 It looks like a spaceship.  And spaceships are very, very cool.

I can take it out of my pocket, wallet, notebook, or ID sleeve anytime I want to reminisce the good ol' times!

Sadly, I don't get to use my Instax as much as I want to, as the film packs are kinda expensive (each photo costs around mmm...thirty-five pesos?).  I bring it with me on very special occasions though, and I usually give the prints away.  Yup, of all the prints I've done, I kept only these two that you see in this blog post.  The others are with friends and grandmothers.  It's my way of giving them something photographically special! :)

*This is my entry for Instax Manila's Summer Giveaway! If you would like to join (well I hope you don't, because it lessens my chance of winning, haha just kidding, let's spread the analogue love!), do visit Instax Manila's site right here.  :)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

thursday, inspired

a grumbling stomach, a grammar consultation, and a dream project have brought me to that "inspired" state of mind again (okay, the bad-tempered stomach has nothing to do with this; it does, however, keeps me seated in my office chair).  unfortunately, the moments of inspiration come and go quickly, and usually none of them has anything to do with finishing starting my thesis.

i have this urge to create.  i've been putting snippets of my daily life in a notebook, filling it with receipts, little pieces of paper, random thoughts.  things i would no doubt enjoy looking at when i get bored ten years from now.  it's a scrapbook minus the fluff.  it's coming along fine so far, and i wonder what my thirty-seven-year-old self will think of me when she is reminded of how much i spent on a meal, or how much a taxi ride (from home to work one day i was running late) cost me.

i have another notebook for doodling purposes, but uh, i think i have to get over the fact that *it's a really nice notebook, too nice to ruin with my sketches*.  every time i discover a "new" artist (whose work i really like) i have this feeling, like a bucket of warm sparkly honey suddenly gets poured all over my insides and tides me over in a great rush of inspiration.  i grab my pen and open to a blank page in my notebook, and that's when the fuzziness stops.  i stare at the page and feel guilty for even attempting to draw.  thus my notebook is saved from desecration. (slashes wrist)

but a girl's gotta believe she can, right?

and so i have another channel: writing.  you see this blog? can you not see how much i haven't written?  i blame myself and tumblr for the short attention span and the desire for little pockets of information instead of long good reads.

while on my lunch break today an acquaintance buzzed me up, asking for sentence construction advice.  when i had given her what i thought was a better phrase, she casually asked if i would be interested to give a tutorial on writing in english to three adults.  are they non-filipino? i asked, expecting korean students about to take an english comprehensive exam.  she answered that actually, she and a couple of friends had been wanting to brush up on their writing, as they were getting rusty.  i said the best tip would be to practice writing / keep on writing, and to read a lot.  and write more, even short, everyday sketches.  then i realized i haven't been doing that myself, which brings me to why i'm blogging right now.

in college my pals thought i was a good writer because i had a flair for language (ohmy my head is so big like, wait okay lemme go on), and that i would be a good children's fiction writer.  i did try, but i think i've forgotten how it was to be a kid and so didn't know what a good story would be for them young 'uns.  i thought i would be better off writing nonsense-with-sense (or, confused) prose pieces, because fiction was just too...structured and serious.  it didn't help that two of my exes wrote good fiction--gaaah i just didn't want to compare my work with theirs, there's too much familiarity in this small writing community, etc. etc. etc. (insert other insecurity, relationship issues here), but really i'm just making lame excuses for not writing.

wait, keeping a blog counts as writing, right? ha ha.

what's the point of this whole post anyway?

i'm still alive, and i am thankful to the universe for keeping me inspired (yeah it also takes a dump on my face every now and then, but hey i'm keeping positive here).  when i'm really lucky, i get inspired enough to summon up some discipline to sit and write, to craft, to draw.  i am awed at the work and dedication of other people, friends, friends of friends. i'm sounding overly emotional now, and i keep saying i'll do this and that, but what i've actually accomplished so far is accumulate a number of not-even-half-filled notebooks.  impressive hoarding, i must say.

the dream project i mentioned at the beginning of the post is a collab between this wannabe writer and her artist partner.  let's give kidfict another shot, hmm?

oh, and i've also ventured into another field of interest, a physical one, but more about that some other time.  :)

thank you for reading.  i don't make sense sometimes but it's good you understand i don't have to make sense all the time anyway.

Monday, March 7, 2011


one of these days the boyfriend & i will compile all the covers we did in a neat blog (or a great image-hosting site).  for now, let me share with you our recent creations!

for the following covers: photos by me, layout & design by ige trinidad.

this one is all ige's, which he made for our second anniversary birthday:

 another one he made, a movie poster for my birthday! :)
(it is now tacked on my bedroom door; my parents thought it was a 'real' production we watched on my birthday!)

it's awesome to see him pen-and-inking again. 

Saturday, March 5, 2011

March 4, 2011

My 27th birthday in photos.  

I saw this spider on the other side of the wall.  It was BIG.

 I call her Sophie.

 Sophie with brother Bugoy.

 The youngest kittens (Barnaby's babies) have no names yet.  The little one in the background looks terrified of the camera, while the one up front is more curious.  :)

 I had my birthday lunch at diner-style Johnny Rockets in Tomas Morato. 


 The strawberry milkshake was sooo good.  There's more in that tin container.


His. "Route 66."  Mushrooms!

Hers. "Smoke House." Bacon! 

 He requested for a wheat bun.

 Onion rings inside the burger.

A little digital jukebox by lets you play songs for a peso each.  I must have spent almost fifteen pesos requesting, and since we were the only customers requesting (we were the only customers at 2pm), the songs played one after another.  The Sixties (+ Motown) ROCKS.

 Ige sketching the jukebox.

Another interesting thing about Johnny Rockets:  every fifteen minutes, the crew (serving crew, kitchen staff, managers) stops whatever they're doing, makes their way to the dining area, goes in a formation along the aisles, and DANCES to hits from the Sixties-Seventies.  And boy, they can really dance!

We were so full.

We headed to Trinoma and walked around to digest the late lunch.  Afterwards headed to the Cultural Center of the Philippines for
Zsa Zsa Zaturnnah, Ze Muzikal!
[In the photo: Gabe Mercado (Didi), Eula Valdes (ZsaZsa), and Tuxqs Rutaquio (Ada)]

It was AWESOME.  We laughed with our not-hungry-at-all-even-If-our-last-meal-was-at-two-and-it-was-already-ten-pm bellies!

 (Because it's my birthday and he can't refuse) I had Ige pose with Wilma Doesnt, who played Dina B.  She was fantastic.

Eula Valdes = timeless sexiness.  

Midnight dinner.

 I got this stamp set at the CCP gift shop during intermission.
It's from a vintage alphabet (typeface) series, and it's in sign language!
I would like to believe it's the universe's way of greeting me.  :)

Thanks to everyone who gave me birthday greetings, gifts, kisses, hugs, and thoughts!