Saturday, May 31, 2003

CRAZy WOLRd Balikbayan box is a Filipino invention. At the airport, you can easily pick out a Filipino face from a crowd of arrivals by the boxes loaded in the cart. This box is used to send or carry goodies from the Land-of-Plenty to the Land-of-not-so-plenty but they want Imported-plenty. Several jokes were spun about balikbayan box but nothing can top the joke about a casket use as the “box”. (whoever is the original author of the joke, raise your two feet. I got this in the e-mail several times, the latest of which is from Liza. I invoke the saying, copying from one source is plagiarism and copying from various sources is research BUT writing about it is a gesture of recognizing one’s talent of creativity (at least). For Filipinos the use of casket to send the goodies to the relos was just a joke (or is it? ngeee) For Russians, it is no joke. A family in the Philippines was puzzled when the coffin of their dead mother arrived from the USA, sent by their sister. The corpse was so tightly squeezed inside the coffin that their mother's face was practically touching the glass cover. When they opened the coffin, they found a letter from their sister pinned to their mother's chest, which read:Dearest brothers and sisters, I am sending you our mother's remains for burial there in the Philippines. Sorry I couldn't come along as the expenses were so high. You will find inside the coffin, under Mama's body, 12 cans of Libby's corned beef and 12 cans of Spam. Just divide it among yourselves. On Mama's feet is a brand-new pair of Reeboks for Junior. There are four pairs of Reeboks under Mama's head for Miloy's sons.Mama is wearing six Ralph Lauren T-shirts - one is for Manong Roy and the rest are for my nephews. Mama is also wearing one dozen Wonder Br! as (your favorite), just divide it among yourselves. The 2 dozen Victoria's Secret panties that Mama is wearing should be distributed among my nieces and cousins.Mama is also wearing eight Docker pants - Kuya Diko, please get one for yourself and the rest are for the boys. The Swiss watch you asked for is on Mama's left wrist, please get it. Aunty Sol, Mama is wearing what you asked for - earrings, ring and necklace - just please get them.Also, the six pairs of Chanel stockings that Mama is wearing must be divided among the teen-age girls there. I Hope they like the color. Your loving sister, Nene PS. Please take care of finding a dress for Mama for her burial. For the Russian balikbayan box version: Smugglers tried to smuggle caviar in coffin Russian smugglers have been caught trying to smuggle 250 kilogrammes of caviar in a coffin. The red caviar was seized at Krasnodar airport when a customs guard investigated the coffin that "just didn't feel right." Russian news agency Interfax said the smugglers were from the far eastern city of Khabarovsk. An Interior Minister spokesman said that the coffin, properly marked as 'cargo 200' - a military and aviation term for a dead body - had arrived in Krasnodar from Khabarovsk after a nine-hour flight. Police added the people accompanying the coffin had all the necessary documents on them, including the coroner's confirmation of death, the way-bill and a form stating the cargo had been checked before departure. AnanovaThursday 22nd May 2003 Names Revisited Filipino feminine names usually end in a. Masculine names can be made into feminine by adding a, like Juana for Juan, Melchora for Melchor or changing the masculine endletter from o to a, like Mario to Maria (oops), Toribio to Toribia. But there are exceptions to the rules. There are feminine names that end in o like Rosario, Ceilito, Ceilo, Cilito and Loreto. The last two were also used by some mothers for their male sons. Except for confusions as to the appropriate address for these human species carrying names that are supposed to be for weaker sex, in the Philippines, there aren’t worthy news that have been caused from resentment of the beneficiaries of the unwanted names.In Japan, according to the Associated Press, a judge sentenced a 54 year old Japanese carpenter 14 years for killing his father, who he claimed gave him a feminine sounding name.Kaname Yoshida has a phonetically feminine ending since Japanese female names often end with “e” “ko’ and yo. There is no direct equivalent to English but is comparable with such as names Francis or Leslie that can be used for both men and women. Akiko in Bicol is Anak ko. Do not start me with Japanese made up words please in the likes of ano sa hapon ang pangit..di MUKAKO. mweheee

Friday, May 30, 2003

TGIF Friday. I should congratulate myself. The carpet in the bedroom is still clutter free. Whoaaa. Must be that I am not reading. The books are in the shelves. Oops, there are two under my pillows. Must be that I am on-line most of the time. . Not into chatting. Like a cigarette, this is habit-forming. The only habit I want to be regular is my morning ritual. It takes me quarter of an hour to read e-mails and another half or hour to respond to some. It is not because I am a slow thinker. It is because I am not good in typing. My speed is one word per minute. I did not hone my typing skill when I was in College. The career counselor/adviser/visionary thought that I would make good as a manager with a secretary who will type my correspondence. Excuses, excuses. What's more with the replacement of the ever noisy typewriters with the user-friendly keyboards that allow even two finger-typing (is there such a word, okay, I a making it up) doing the job of the whole typing pool,who needs a typing skill of 70 words per minute. The other fractions of hours are allotted to reading newspapers and visiting some message boards. I try to minimize this last activity. Some people incognito in their handles pull my string and turn this dainty CAT into politically -correct- metaphor blurting ogre. This weekend, I am going to try what I have been thinking all week... Put two cups of dry red beans in the food processor and grind to a powder. Set aside. Mix one teaspoon honey, 1 egg yolk, 1/2 teaspoon olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon half and half or heavy cream. set aside. Mix the powdered red beans with little water to form a paste. Spread all over your face (except for the eye) as a mask. Leave the mask on the face for five minutes and then rinse thoroughly with water. Follow with the hydration mask made from honey, cream and yolk. (Above). Apply to the face including eye area and leave it for 20 minutes. Rinse with water. Get the phone and dial for pizza. Yum... So you think the CAT is cooking this weekend. That is a recipe for facial. Memories: The torrentail rains that brought Great Flood to Metro Manila and suburbs the past days brought memories...the plank of a wood that becomes an instant Bridge of Madison County saving a lot of expensive leather and rubber shoes of students in the university belt...ladies with their skirts up wading through the brown colored floodwater trying to avoid the open manholes...children swimming in the stalled...enterprising men offering the "tulak" service for cars that stopped breathing due to choking... My lady friend and I cannot forget that time that our car was stranded for hours. The traffic would not move.We looked for a short cut. We were in the vicinity where these lovers' rendesvouz can be found in almost all corners of the narrow roads. I felt I was going to the bathroom. The water was already inside the car. But the car was still running. We struck an idea. Bad idea. Why don't we check in and wait for the traffic to ease out or the flood to subside. Why not, so we drove in. Haaa. An attendant talked to my friend while I held any muscle movement that would make me go anytime. Sorry, they do not allow ladies unescorted. He threw us a sino-ba-sainyo-look. Gawdddd.....sabi ko sa kaibigan ko, ako sigurado ako, lady...Sabi niya, if I could just get out of the car, I could have given him a whack in his head with my stilleto shoes. So back to the problem. My friend suggested that I should do in the car. No way. What does she think of me a dog ? Do not ask me how I relieve myself. I have the right to remain silent. The CAT got her own tongue.

Thursday, May 29, 2003

SHORT BLOGS Getting older I like Christopher de Leon. He is a good actor. He was acting when he said that it can be tough being a man, with all the feelings, sentiments and frustrations kept within. I am not Christopher, neither I am an actor. (but I won a best actress award when I was in College in my role as a mental case. I do not to have to act anyway. hehehe). I am not a man either but lately, I try to keep frustrations deep within me. Not really. Not so long ago, I would have face the people and the things that frustrate me and address them first hand. I feel old already. I do not want to hurt other people’s feelings. That is how far this goes. Someone is reading my mind thru my writings. ========================================= The other day, I met one of our managers in the elevator. I gave my best smile. He just looked at me and pretended as if I was some sort of an invisible alien who is testing how antiquated our elevator is. It is not the color of the skin. Mas maitim siya sa akin. Itim na itim. Pati siguro buto. In my planet na bawal ang nakasimangot, I could have just ask him what bugs him. (ano ba problema mo sa mundo). Anyway, since I am growing more mature forcibly by the hours, by the minutes because of close encounters with people who are either cerebral or shallow, I just dismiss it with a thought, inggit ka lang sa jacket ko. (Shallow rin). ================================================ Talking about shallowness, I would have chosen to be in this category if I know I would be famous and my accomplishment will be chronicled in the Guinnes World of Record. From Ananova: Indian man creates new world record for longest ear hair An Indian man has set a new record for having the longest ear hair in the world. Radhakant Bajpai's ear tufts measure 13.2cm, or 5.19ins, at their longest point. The previous record was held by another Indian man, Anthony Victor, whose ear hair measured 11.5 centimetres. Bajpai, a 50-year-old grocer, said he'd been inspired to try for the record by B D Tyagi, an earlier holder of the record. He told the Hindustan Times: "Making it to the Guinness records is indeed a special occasion for me and my family. God has been very kind to me." Story filed: 11:03 Friday 16th May 2003 CAT: Nakakaiyak talaga. I am starting to grow my whiskers. Someone, please help me draft my press statement. ================================= A woman in California won the bid in e-Bay for a perverted cracker. Description is as follow: This Animal Cracker was found just like this out of the package.. It is not a fake.. I am the one that found it just like this.. It is a Goat riding a Hippo.. I have never seen anything like this before.. It would be a cool thing to have at partys and to show off to people.. I know everyone I have showed it to almost dies laughing.. Shipping is $5... CAT: I hope nobody accidentally/intentionally eat the cracker during a party. There goes the $ 38 inclusive of shipping. ================== Hmmm. Methinks I am going to bid for that clock at the e-bay..It is a beautiful conversation piece for get-together of people who find it difficult to be on time. Decription: Ever wanted to take those awful embarrassing moments back? Well now you can! Maybe you're 80 and want to feel like 18 or even be 18! Have fun with your friends and family as you watch the hours fly by in reverse! Disclaimer: the Backwards Clock is not a time machine - nor a fountain of youth! Takes one AA (Double A) Battery not included! All of our Clocks that we are selling are Mint in the Original Package. And have never been opened ================================= Package/Return Policy Talking about package, I bought a web page maker software together with two more.(I am becoming serious in blogging) that I want to have my own style. Three cds for $ 20. I installed the web page maker, only to find out that I got one in my computer. Anyhowhow, I read in the package that it may be exchanged for same item within 14 da......with orig.......ceipt and pac..ging. I have not kicked that habit of ripping off packages, wrappers and even envelopes. I realized I have been using the letter opener a lot not for its intended use, i.e. " to make tusok of retratos of humans". If there are humans who are allergic to cats. So are we, CATS. mwehhee

Wednesday, May 28, 2003

UPDATES ON PIGEONS ERRM DOVES? I forgot to tell you that the next morning, I saw a dead pigeon or dove on the same spot where the first bird was. I am not sure whether it was its mate or another bird. Regardless of the negative thoughts about pigeons as "rats with wings", poop all over the place, noisy, dirty and spread diseases, this CAT was gripped by a sad, sinking feeling seeing the dead bird. I need to make a visit to that place where humans are addicted to some substance and stuff, they call coffee. Oh, its been a while that I have not visited these people who would chat about topics randomly as an excuse to drink coffee. Talking about pigeons. Jude:Some doves (which are often mistaken for pidgeons) do mate for life. I have one morning dove that's lived alone in my back yard for years ever since it's mate was killed. I don't know how but we found it in our drive, extremely dead. Poor little survivor.... but, life must go on. Wander :J, I am one of those who don't know their birds. Will you tell me the difference between a dove and a pigeon? CAT: methinks, a dove starts with d and pigeon with p. bwahahahaha Jude: Wander - a dove and a pigeon are really the same thing. Pigeons are larger and do have the propensity to carry fleas and I don't know that doves do. There are many varieties of both - but you could reasonably call a dove a pigeon and a pigeon a dove and be correct. CAT: and I call a mouse a rat and a rat a mouse. Wander: When you say they are differentiated by their largeness or smallness, do they both carry normal sizes with them? Can a pigeon mate a dove? How would you know that a birdling is that of dove or a pigeon or when it is a she or a he? CAT: Methinks that Victorian crowned pigeons are the biggest...they are as big as hen turkey. Talking about turkey, can I have turkey sandwich please. meow. The smallest is the pygmy dove. Methinks, it has a bone in its beak.hehehehehe. Jude: Well... I'm not sure what you mean about the first question, but doves are much smaller than pigeons. As to the second question.... I had to do a quick look up on that. It seems that there are many species of both and they do not interbreed unless they are kept alone together (a male and a female) and this is a rarity. CAT: Methinks turtle doves that do not look like a turtle. Quail doves that do not look like quail…mm yum…turtle soup and quail eggs. What am I thinking ? Wander: DC, talking of Pigeons and doves, one good lesson that I learned of them is the fact that they do mate for life and the survivors normally find mates in a very slow pace. Let us ask Jude if this is true in as much as she seems to be knowledgeable with pigeons. Edgarbb: Call it monogamy. Pigeons practise monogamy. You reminded me of a murder I committed when I was young that until now gives me a twinge of conscience: I killed the mate of a pigeon. CAT: Now they are talking about murder. Methinks effect of coffee. Edgarbb: My dad back home had a flock of pigeons, and his pride was a beautiful white pigeon with a long tail which it loved to spread open when strutting around in the backyard- It really looked so beauiful, so handsome walking around like a peacock with its tail spread like a fan, my dad had taken to calling it "Prince". CAT: I hope it did not change its name to TFKP. Edgarbb: It was definitely different from the rest, and dad was looking forward to having some more when it breeds. But for unknown reasons, it took as its mate a drab, unkempt-looking frowsy female which hardly groomed itself so that its feathers was always a mess. CAT: Methinks, he should have brought it to a vet for grooming. Edgarbb: (Reminded me of a housewife in a threadbare bathrobe and hairs in curlers, hehehe...) To top it all, its eggs were infertile. CAT: Must have taken a lot of birth control pills. Edgarbb: Many a time, my dad would stand guard near its nest under an eave to make sure nothing happens to its eggs-- in vain. Long after the eggs of other couples had hatched, her two eggs would still be there, with Prince solicitously hovering around. CAT: Methinks, Under the Saya pala. (rolleyes) Edgarbb: I decided to take matters into my own hands: I decided that Prince needed a new mate. (Admittedly, it never entered my mind that "the problem" could have been with Prince and not his mate!) Knowing that pigeons are monogamous, I knew that the floozy had to be removed from the scene before Prince, the dang fool, would take up with another female. CAT: Methinks, sounds like the evil mother who wants to get rid of the daughter-in-law. Background music please. Edgarbb: When I saw her standing alone on top of the roof with Prince nowhere in sight, I took my .22 pistol, aimed, fired- and she rolled down the roof and plopped on the ground- dead. (I still am a good pistol shot.) CAT: Bloody... Edgarbb: To my chagrin and dad's great disappointment, Prince disappeared. I wish I could say "for reasons known only to pigeons", but somehow, I've got the feeling that it had something to do with the death of his mate. Prince left because he didn't want to be reminded of a place where he had spent many happy hours with his love. We never saw him again. DC: Home busted that lovely love affair! And that show-off of a Prince...he must had been so broken-hearted! .. CAT: Methinks, only people become broken hearted.

Tuesday, May 27, 2003

WHAT'S IN A NAME ? According to the South China Morning Post, a couple from China named their baby boy Saddam Deng Sars. The baby was born when the war in Iraq broke out; thus the first name SADDAM. Deng is the family name while SARS obviously came from the deadly virus that claims hundred of lives in several countries especially Asian. Whatever motivated this couple to name the baby after a man and a virus who and that were responsible for the deaths of many people is beyond me. During the trial of OJ, many of the babies born were named after his murdered wife. I cannot find in Psychology 101 a logical explanation why humans immortalize a name of a person who was a victim of injustice and violence. Call me biased but I think Filipinos are more creative by using different methods of naming the children shun the book of names of babies. I had a classmate whose name is Magtanggol D VIII. It sounds like a royalty, the VIII. They are eight boys in the family and every one is named Magtanggol. They are called by the number…One, Two, Three etc. The father wished that he could have a dozen. He must be thinking of forming his own contingent. Magtanggol is the Tagalog word for Defend. Theirs is a family of lawyers. Magtanggol, Magtanggol, LLP. Some families use the number only when it is the third generation like the grandfather is the senior; the son is the junior and the grandson is the Third.Most often, the father who is the junior would assume a pet name June or Jun, just like a friend, Jun2be which reads Junjun. It is interesting if this family has girls named April, May and sons July (Julio) and August (Augusto). They cover spring and summer in the calendar. The name January is also in the calendar ; a name of a martyred bishop who was born in September. Talking about calendar, my friend’s brother was born in Oct. 6. His name is Bruno. He was named after the Saint who founded the Cathusian Order. His parents named their siblings by consulting the calendar. I guess my friend’s brother did not like the name. Bruno is often associated with villains and ugly guys. Must be because of a character actor named Bruno. His pet name is BOY. My friend calls him Kuya Boy. He does not like this monicker either. Some parents get the names of their children from the bible. However they use the Tagalog equivalent of the name like Esteban for Stephen. Pet name is Steve when young and Teban when he starts growing a belly and the hair becoming bald. The old wannabe young wants to be called Tebs. Luke is Lukas, while Peter is Pedro;and Paul is Pablo. Who wanted to be named Hudas for Jude? Some couples want to memorialize their names. They name their children from a combination of their names or part of their names, like Loree from Loreta and Ray. Sometimes some letters are changed in order to make it sound nicer. The girl such named may hate her parents if they name her with LORAY.(translation please…) My friend’s maternal relatives were named with Tagalog words. His mother is Ligaya; his aunts were named Liwayway and Liwanag. ( I am not kidding). I just forget to ask him if he has an uncle named Lapu-lapu. The fans adopt the names of their favorites. I think I got nephews who are named Elvis, Ricky, Clint, Fernando, Joseph????I wonder why my brother did not name her daughter, VILMA. Hehehehe An old neighbor is named Cirilo. His mother’s favorite was Shirley Temple. He could have been named Shirley if he were a girl. Art is the most common name. Maybe from the name Arturo. The book lovers and the history buffs would always pick up the name of King Arthur. Art is a very common name that a friend wished he had his name changed when he became a C. He could have changed it to --The man whose former name is ART. I could not blame him. Wherever ytou go, you will see the name...ART MUSEUM, ART IN STONE, ART SCHOOL, EYE FOR an ART, ART and FRAMING, etc I wonder what ART4 MEV stands for.Heheheheh If you think, that the cat’s name is CATHY and I was named after St. Catherine, you are wrong.I was named after my grandmother. I did not like the name that when they brought me to school for enrollment, I refused to be registered not until my mom changed it to a more beautiful sounding. I thought it was just as easy as changing a hair style, clothes and boy fr(eeek). In the later years, I realized that it would take tons of papers to remove the legal entanglements that I could have opted to retain my name and just box one's ears who dare make fun of it. Do not ask my original name. When my brothers are mad at me, they call me by that name. Others say it sounds Italian….

Friday, May 23, 2003

DO YOU FEEL LOVED I saw a pigeon in the middle of the road. It won't fly. It won't move. It was just there. It seems saying, kill me. It was looking at what appeared to be the remains of another pigeon that might have been run over by a car, as to when, who knows.Only a few feathers left. The pigeon looked like, it cannot get over the death of a friend or a lover. The grief must be so intense that it did not bother if it too would be the victim of a hit-and-run driver. We waited until it finally walked to the side of the street. It did not fly. It must be thinking of coming back for the fallen friend. The fallen bird was loved; some people aren't. Mood: Mixed What mixed? halo-halo ? We, gurls used to say, "gwapo sana, kaya lang..(insert some dumb, dumber. dumberer situations)". I was falling in line in the bank. I noticed the guy, two bodies away. Ehhmm great profile. Neat attire. Shoes...leather...clean ...Then I saw the casual trousers...and the long tape....34, 34, 34 , 34, 34, 34. My lady friend who pretended to be *dumberer* commented. Must be his age ? Gagaahhh measurement yan in inches. Owwww, that long ? Gusto kong manampal and she isn't even blonde. ew ew ew.

Thursday, May 22, 2003

CLAY and FRIENDS I lost the bet. Clay did not win. My friends are pestering me. Lunch that is. Ewwww. I should send this poem about Friendship that was e-mailed to me by Jun2be. He is not a writer of the poem. He just asked me to forward to two friends. Are you tired of the mushy "friendship" poems that always sound good but never actually come close to reality? Well, here is a "friendship" poem that really speaks to true friendship and truth itself. When you are sad, I will help you plot revenge against the sorry bastard who made you sad. When you are blue I'll try to dislodge whatever is choking you. When you smile . I'll know you finally got laid. When you are scared will rag you about it every chance I get. When you are worried, I will tell you horrible stories about how much worse it could be and to quit whining. When you are confused I will use little words to explain it to your dumb ass. When you are sick.. stay away from me until you're well again. I don't want whatever you have. When you fall, I will point and laugh at your clumsy ass. This is my oath, I pledge 'till the end. Why you may ask? Because you're my friend! Send this poem to ten of your closest friends, or else you will have bad luck and go to hell and get depressed because you realize you only have 2 friends, and one of them is not speaking to you right now anyway. P.S. A friend will help you move. A really good friend will help you move a body.

ONE MORE C From my brod NES, this story about CHARACTER reminds me of a story back home. A lady in a faded gingham dress and her husband, dressed in a homespun threadbare suit, stepped off the train in Boston, and walked timidly without an appointment into the Harvard University President's outer office. The secretary could tell in a moment that such backwoods, country hicks had no business at Harvard and probably didn't even deserve to be in Cambridge. "We want to see the president," the man said softly. "He'll be busy all day," the secretary snapped. "We'll wait," the lady replied. For hours the secretary ignored them, hoping that the couple would finally become discouraged and go away. They didn't and the secretary grew frustrated and finally decided to disturb the president, even though it was a chore she always regretted. "Maybe if you see them for a few minutes, they'll leave," she said to him. He sighed in exasperation and nodded. Someone of his importance obviously didn't have the time to spend with them, but he detested gingham dresses and homespun suits cluttering up his outer office. The president, stern faced and with dignity, strutted toward the couple. The lady told him, "We had a son who attended Harvard for one year. He loved Harvard. He was happy here. But about a year ago, he was accidentally killed. My husband and I would like to erect a memorial to him, somewhere on campus." The president wasn't touched.... He was shocked. "Madam," he said, gruffly, "we can't put up a statue for every person who attended Harvard and died. If we did, this place would look like a cemetery." "Oh, no," the lady explained quickly. "We don't want to erect a statue. We thought we would like to give a building to Harvard." The president rolled his eyes. He glanced at the gingham dress and homespun suit, then exclaimed, "A building ! Do you have any earthly idea how much a building costs ? We have over seven and a half million dollars in the physical buildings here at Harvard." For a moment the lady was silent. The president was pleased. Maybe he could get rid of them now. The lady turned to her husband and said quietly, "Is that all it costs to start a university ? Why don't we just start our own ?" Her husband nodded. The president's face wilted in confusion and bewilderment. Mr. and Mrs. Leland Stanford got up and walked away, traveling to Palo Alto, California where they established the university that bears theirs name, Stanford University, a memorial to a son that Harvard no longer cared about. You can easily judge the character of others by how they treat those who they think can do nothing. --------------- A TRUE STORY --------------- by Malcolm Forbes A very business minded friend invited me to have lunch. She came late as usual. Oras Makati raw yon. She tagged along an old man wearing a faded shirt with some stains on the sleeves. He was wearing a pair of Japanese sandals. At first glance, I thought he was a handyman in her office whom she made as alalay or gofer boy. She introduced me to him as MR. ____________. Very polite and formal, I thought. Usually she used the word MANG. My friend told me that she was accompanying him to buy a car. Oww... He did not speak much while eating and so us ladies dominated the conversations. He paid the bill and I looked at my friend. How dare she, inviting me and letting someone else spent his last few pesos in that expensive restaurant. I offered to pay but my friend stopped me. We went to a car dealer. He picked up the newest model. I asked my friend, what he will do with the car when I think, he cannot even drive. My friend kept on chuckling.(sasabunutan ko na sana eh) The agent was ignoring the old man and was trying to convince him to go to a used car dealer. He said he has other customers to attend to. My friend approached them and asked for the price of the car. The agent responded that the old man may not even have the capacity to buy a liter of gas for the car. The old man said he is going to buy it. The agent almost choked. Eh Mang...paano ho ninyo babayaran ? He got his small dilapadated tote bag and got a bunch of bills wrapped in an old newspapers. Pahiya yong agent. In short he was able to buy a car and I asked my friend, who he was, what he does etc. Dahlling. He is a millionaire. He owns several condos in Binondo. He was a victim of kidnapping and he was always a simple man. May anak ba siya ? Puwede bang magpa-adopt ? Uunahan mo pa ako. mwehehehee ------- A true Story of the CAT...sumpaman.

Wednesday, May 21, 2003

MORE Cs COMING CLAY I am rooting for Clay Aiken. He sang a favorite song of mine, Bridge Over Troubled Water. CAT: Care for a bet ? COCKROACH FOR A PET CANBERRA (Reuters) - Dog too demanding? Allergic to cats? Then how about coming home to a lovable, giant cockroach? Would you believe that demand for cockroaches as pets have risen in Australia. But before you say YUCK CAT: YUCK YUCK YUCK the major suppliers of this unusual pet said that they are very low maintenance.They are not referring to the critters that inhabit the moist places under the sink, inside the cupboards but they are marketing the world' biggest cockroach that is native to Australia. . The marketers claim that these really are charming creatures. They're clean, they're not stinky at all and there really is nothing horrible about them except for the name cockroach. CAT: What about CATs as pets. Yuck. I thought boys were weird when they tie a thread to the biggest fly that they caught to play with it until the buzzing sound was heard no more. CUSTODY FIGHT FOR A BIRD DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla. - The object of the court battle was a very colorful 18 year old MACAW. The suit was to decide to whom the bird was going to be awarded, Southby and Vaughn or Accadi. Accaedi bought the bird three years ago but was forced to leave it to Southby and Vaughn when she moved to a place where no pets are allowed. During the court hearing, cranberry juice was served to make the bird stop from squawking and displaying an attitude of pacing on his branch. Invoking the case of Solomon and the two mothers, the udge awarded custody to Southby and Vaughn. Accardi did not plan to appeal. She thought that the custody battle was CRAZY. CAT: Cuawk COFFIN made of wickerDead warm to wicker coffins By Katie Allen SHEFFIELD (Reuters) - An undertaker who provides hand-woven wicker coffins says he has tripled his sales after pop star Adam Faith was buried in a basketwork casket in March. Demand soared after newspapers showed Faith's wicker coffin covered in flowers, said John Mallatratt of Peace Funerals in Sheffield where wickerwork coffins cost 409 pounds, around twice the price of the solid pine option. CAT: Humans... If you find me CORNY today SLAP me.

THE FIVE Cs of the DAY This does not pertain to 5 C's of Credit nor to Five C's of Diamonds. This refers to news around the globe with C's in them. CANNIBALISM At Bunia, Congo, UN officials are investigating reports that cannibalism is being practiced by fighters. Civilians and combatants who got killed during clashes were being cut open and their hearts, livers and lungs were eaten while still warm. CAT: Ahhh must be kins of Hannibal. CANADA It took 15 weeks for Canada to prove that an underweight cow died of mad cow disease. The cow was slaughtered in a licensed meat packing facility in January 31 and was intended for sale in Alberta. Despite the negative news from Canada, a friend sent me the reasons why he will chose a Canadian as a wife. Maganda raw kung CANADIAN ang asawa mo kasi puwede mo nang sabihin........ Maglaba canadian; Magluto cana dian, Mag-plantsa cana-dian at higit sa lahat, Maghubad cana-dian. CAT: Erase? CHOCOLATE According to the prestigious British Medical Journal, chocolates may extend your life. The researchers say that antioxidant phenols in the chocolate portion probably are responsible for adding more years to people’s lives. CAT:Em ? CORPSE For days, the corpse was stuck in the water pipe of the Manila Water that residents feared the contamination of water supply. CAT:Ekkk CENTENARIAN An old lady in Nicaragua claimed that she is 116 years old that makes her one year older than the known living oldest man, Kamato Hongo of Japan. According to her, the only problem she had was when her husband had a mistress. But she outlived her while her husband died when he was 78. CAT: bwahaahaha Quotation of the day: Creative people know how to make something big out of something small.

Tuesday, May 20, 2003

DEDICATED TO LIZA, A FRIEND WHO IS A LOVE STORY FREAK Kumuha ka muna ng Kleenex or paper towel o toilet paper. Iiyak ka na naman. This story was e-mailed by Len to our group. FOREVER KIND OF LOVE By Christy M. Martin One of our favorite patients had been in and out of our small, rural hospital several times, and all of us on med-surg had grown quite attached to her and her husband. In spite of terminal cancer and resulting pain, she never failed to give us a smile or a hug. Whenever her husband came to visit, she glowed. He was a nice man, very polite and as friendly as his wife. I had grown quite attached to them and was always glad to care for her. I admired their expression of love. Daily, he brought her fresh flowers and a smile, then sat by her bed as they held hands and talked quietly. When the pain was too much and she cried or became confused, he hugged her gently in his arms and whispered until she rested. He spent every available moment at her bedside, giving her small sips of water and stroking her brow. Every night, before he left for home, he closed the door so they could spend time alone together. When he was gone, we'd find her sleeping peacefully with a smile on her lips. On this night, however, things were different. As soon as I entered report, the day nurses informed us she had steadily taken a turn for the worse and wouldn't make it through the night. Although I was sad, I knew that this was for the best. At least my friend wouldn't be in pain any longer. I left report and checked on her first. When I entered the room, she aroused and smiled weakly, but her breathing was labored and I could tell it wouldn't be long. Her husband sat beside her, smiling, too, and said, "My Love is finally going to get her reward." Tears came to my eyes, so I asked if they needed anything and left quickly. I offered care and comfort throughout the evening, and at about midnight she passed away with her husband still holding her hand. I consoled him and with tears running down his cheeks he said, "May I please be alone with her for awhile?" I hugged him and closed the door behind me. I stood outside the room, blotting my tears and missing my friend and her smile. And I could feel the pain of her husband in my own heart. Suddenly from the room came the most beautiful male voice I have ever heard singing. It was almost haunting the way it floated through the halls. All of the other nurses stepped out into the hallways to listen as he sang "Beautiful Brown Eyes" at the top of his lungs. When the tune faded, the door opened and he called to me. He looked me in the eyes then hugged me saying, "I sang that song to her every night from the first day we met. Normally I close the door and keep my voice down so as not to disturb the other patients. But I had to make sure she heard me tonight as she was on her way to heaven. She had to know that she will always be my forever love. Please apologize to anyone I bothered. I just don't know how I will make it without her, but I will continue to sing to her every night. Do you think she will hear me?" I nodded my head "yes," unable to stop my tears. He hugged me again, kissed my cheek, and thanked me for being their nurse and friend. He thanked the other nurses, then turned and walked down the hall, his back hunched, whistling the song softly as he went. As I watched him leave I prayed that I, too, would someday know that kind of forever love.

BELATED HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY SISTER, EM. Very short name for a sister taller than I am. She had her nursing internship in UP-PGH. She used to commute from Taft to our place in Quezon City. The moment she was seated near the driver's seat, she always fall asleep. The driver who knew her already would wake her up telling her. Oy nandito ka na. She would reply. EM ? But frankly, she is fond of MM, not the the singer, the cute lovable round choc candies.

Monday, May 19, 2003

FROM THE MOUTH OF THE BABES ermmmm BABAES (translation women) LEN: I courted him at school. I had to make the move because he was sooooooooooooo tsope ! I 'd wait forever if I didn't , ha ha LMYE LOL!!! (biro lang, darling) . Philamgypsy: LOL!!!! love your authenticity...How empowered. Itong mga stories na ito ang gusto kong marinig. I find a woman so desirable when she comes across confident and sure-footed. Gandang-ganda ako sa babaeng alam ang pupuntahan. He must be an exceptional man to see what's before him. Some men don't know what's in front of them. I remember when I was only I think 16, I asked my Mom why should a woman wait for a man to propose marriage??? Why can't a woman just do her own checking as well??? I think its unfair for us to wait...My MoM couldn't believe her ears. I think that was one of the many reasons why I was locked in, and never had the guts to do anything. By the time I became gutsy, my desire was not there anymore, but again, ITS NEVER TOOO LATE!!!! I tell my nieces the same thing....Learn how to send the right signals to the right man and body can tell you which one is right/wrong for you. Kayo ang makikisama, but time has changed, its almost a miracle to fall in love with a whole/complete person. LIZA Secrets To A Perfect Relationship 1. It is important that a man helps you around the house and has a job. 2. It is important that a man makes you laugh. 3. It is important to find a man you can count on and doesn't lie to you. 4. It is important that a man is good in bed and loves making love to you. 5. It is really important that these four men don't know each other. HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA (sidebar: If only Ridson know what you are e-mailing to me..bwahaahahaha) CAT: What if they know each other. (mysterious grin)(don't give me that look. I am just asking Okay?) JUDE Translation please. Quotation: The truth is the opinion that survives.

Sunday, May 18, 2003

CAT on CHIMPS My brain is frozen. I need a lot of heat to thaw it. Since that write- think- write- you are logged- off episode last Friday, my brain seems not working. To borrow Philamgyspy’s statement - " My brain went on strike and it will work when it wants to". If I am going to believe all the researches conducted, I would say that my human pet/companion/alter ego is an animal cousin of the chimps.I am a CAT. I have a different culture from those swinging movie bit players of Tarzan. (excuse me). Humans are believed to have evolved from lower form of animals. This is an outrage for me as a CAT, knowing that millions of money is being spent to research about the traits of some animals that closely resemble those of humans but I have never come across a serious study of our species. Even me, a simple cat does not have to spend months and years in the forest to observe that chimps most likely will live at the top of the tree if I know that hungry lions will devour me if I stay in the low-lying places in the forest. I do not need a scientist to come up with that conclusion. Baahh. I myself would not dare to go near the house dog of a neighbor when I know, it has been salivating to get my tail since I refuse to join it in a dog-chase-cat game. I am too classy to engage in such a game. When a scientist concludes that the chimps are inching their way into becoming more humans just because they were found to be cracking nuts with a primitive tool that had long been discarded by humans billions of years ago, this CAT is confused. Can I infer that we, CATS are close to becoming more humans because we are civilized enough to do our stuff in a litterbox and to eat in a cat’s dish rather than go into barbaric killing of a mouse……..While these scientists are talking about chimps and apes capable of becoming a Shakespeare given a computer, this CAT which is using a mouse to be able to write not only a sentence but also an article can hope to come up with a novel "THE POLITICAT IS A LIAR" .Have you read about a CAT peeing a computer ? Cats have the decency of doing the call of nature under a bush or in the dark corner of a house but they would not get caught with one leg up against a fire hydrant. They got culture you know. While chimps are found to be using sticks to pick noses (blech), CATs do the grooming subtly that even in public view; humans would not find it revolting. So what is significant knowing that chimps dance when it rains?.... Dogs look for shades or run inside the house when it rains like humans do.Does it require for the whys and the whats and the wherefores to explain this behaviour. ? Simple explantion is it is just being scared to get wet. Isn’t it enough to realize that the dwindling of the number of the apes and chimps is not because they have evolved to human beings if the evolution theory is to be believed…but it is because of the carnage of these animals by enterprising hunters who sell the meat as exotic food. I do not need these researches to become fond of chimps. I like them in the commercial especially that one that mimics an endorser of a wireless carrier. It is better though than the research made about the sexual lives of insects. No scientist so far is able to offer explanation why CATS make a lot of noise when they make love. Do not ask me, I am not a TOM. Besides, I think I have evolved into a higher form of animal. See, I can use a computer to write something for humans to read. SHE: What is this ranting about chimp, CAT? Are you fishing for assurance that I will not replace you with chimp as my pet or floating the idea of getting a dsl line because you believe you are pursuing life-enriching activities by blogging which others regard as time wasting behaviour aka internet addiction. CAT: I say, it is better than hooked up in Reality TV programs and considering a-food-begging poodle a genius. You humans are so complicated but shallow.haah Quotation: Self-praise is half-slander.

Friday, May 16, 2003

CAT IS MAD I am here. Do not talk to me. I am pissed off. I was about to post and publish what I have written for today's post when I was logged off. Did I not remind myself to type and save it first before posting and publishing it in my journal? Now I could not remember a thing. It was all about culture of chimps, forked tongue, etc.etc. Thank GOD, it's Friday...Meow.... Quotation for the day: A nail is driven out by another nail; habit is overcome by a habit.

Thursday, May 15, 2003

CONVERSATION WITH STEFFI Was it Maya Angelou who said that only equals can be friends ? I've got a friend. (Incidentally, that is my favorite song). She is a beautiful eightyish woman. We are not equal in terms of age, social status, experience and wisdom. She is a polished diamond and I am only a small cubic zirconia. Nevertheless we are friends. Unlike Mitch Albom of Tuesdays with Morrie fame who learned the lessons in life inside the classrooms and later on in the house of his professor, ours are entirely different. There is no mentor-student relationship; just simple exchanges of vibes; fuzzy and wispy sometimes but yet give clarity about some things that’s going on inside of her, what she feels and what she wants. . Steffi: hello CAT: good morning Steffi: How are you ? CAT: Good, what about you ? Steffi: Same everyday. Life is boring. There is nothing but the four walls of my room. CAT: I agree. Steffi: Yours too? CAT: There is nothing but the monitor of my computer glaring at me. Steffi: Well, you are much younger than I am, your life should be full of fun. CAT: Age is not what determines the quality of life, is it ? Steffi: If not, then what ? CAT: Am not sure either. Steffi: So what are you doing today. CAT: Am waiting for the manager to finish counting the money.. Steffi. Good for you ? CAT: It is not mine. It is the office’s. Steffi: What are you going to do with it. CAT: There are two options: one is, to have it deposited in the bank and another is to bring it home and take a long vacation. Steffi: Oh my goodness, will they allow you to do that ? CAT: depositing the money, yes but to choose the other option, I will have the entire police force after me. Steffi:you are crazy..ha ha ha ha, I thought all the while you are serious… CAT: If I get serious, I will be in the hospital...hehehe.Anyway. It think it is time for you to go to the dining room, Madam. Steffi: I haven’t gotten dressed yet. I am a mess. What time is it ? CAT: Time to get dress ..cuckoo cuckoo. It is eleven o cleckkkk Steffi. is that a tall order. CAT: I do not think so, I am only 5’2: hehehe Steffi: hahahaha CAT: you need some help? Steffi: No thank you. CAT: Because, if you do, I am going to send you my hair dresser. Steffi: You have a hair dresser ? CAT: Yes, but I warn you, she is shorter than I am, so short that she needed two stepladders put one top of the other so she can reach your back.. Steffi: that must be a joke again. You are making it up. hahaha CAT: She is also so ugly that a friend gave me a banana for my baby monkey when I brought her to her house.. Steffi: hahahahah CAT: okay, I will hung up now so you can get ready for the dining room.. Steffi: bye, bye, thanks for the call. CAT: thank you too. My conversation with you gives me also joy. Quotation of the day: A sense of humor is the pole that adds balance to our steps as we walk the tightrope of life.

Wednesday, May 14, 2003

IT IS THE END OF THE WORLD May 14 May 15…boom ...The news said, the human race is going to be destroyed in May 15. I am a CAT. I am spared. I like to warn my human companion so she would be saved. All she needs is to pay 1 million yen so she can enter the dome that would protect her from electromicrowave that will cause the disaster. From Mainichi Daily News, Japan In Oizumi, Gifu Prefecture, Panawave Laboratory members are constructing dome-shaped structures, which they claim to be resistant to any kind of natural disasters. The cult's publications indicated that its members are convinced that the human race will be destroyed on May 15 this year because of a dramatic change in the angles of the Earth's axis.People wishing to enter the domes and be saved from Armageddon are rumored to be asked to pay one million yen. They claim the domes can withstand earthquakes with a magnitude of up to 15 on the Richter scale. The cult leader is a cat lover. Yay. According to a tobacconist, Chino (name of the leader) would walk with a retinue of 20 to 30 cats. But they found also dogs, pigs, crows and even igunanas and their pay –to-be-saved modern Noah’s Arc. Other than being animals advocate she is regarded to be a weirdo and so are her followers. They all dressed up in white and they drape the walls of their laboratory with white unblemished cloths. Lately, with the clock ticking for the Armageddon, they drape the trees, the highways and the roads with white cloth as shield for the electromagnetic waves. The leader does not take a bath and is dying from cancer. SHE: Hey Cat, you like me to believe this crap? Some years ago, this was also a bunch of cultists in the USA that committed suicide en masse on the belief that they would be transported to another world thru a space ship that would pick them up. Unfortunately, the space ship never came and their bodies were found very dead by the police authorites. CAT: Who sez, I believe this news.BTW, can you get me a ticket to Japan ? meow. Quotation: The illiterate wise are not half as dangerous as educated fools. Some more reads: Food for the Brain: Coffee Break Do you know that the white collar coffee break became official in 1950 when a restaurant was invited by a big insurance company with close to 2,000 employees to serve coffee from one desk to another. **************** LYING Are you joking? An ordinance to ban lying? An ordinance to ban lying? Somebody must be lying.More credulous people may think it has been proposed in China, where there have been false reports about the highly infectious respiratory disease SARS, or in Japan, where false labeling on food was rampant in recent years. But these people are wrong about both countries. The move to legislate the ban on lying has actually been made in the United States.The Associated Press and other media picked up the story, and The New York Times came up with a detailed account the other day.When I first read the story, ``a troublesome country'' was the thought that crossed my mind. If the ordinance has been proposed in ``that country,'' I thought, it makes sense. After all, America is a country that has enforced the prohibition law. As this example shows, U.S. politics has a streak that unhesitatingly forces what is perceived as right on its people.With liquor sales banned by law, black-market transactions flourished during the Prohibition era. The mafia had the backdoor liquor trade under its control, and a behind-the-scenes society bloomed. To legislate the ban on lying, I thought, would only bring back something like that.With lies going underground, a behind-the-scenes society with only committed liars as its members might come into being. While the society might not be controlled by the mafia, what would happen if lies embellished by its members flooded into ``normal society.''Pondering this and that, I realized that perhaps I was going too far.The idea of an ordinance prohibiting lying has been proposed by Jo Hamlett, mayor of Mount Sterling, a small town in Iowa. He says he is tired of extra-tall tales he has been hearing in the town. Explaining why he proposed the legal ban on lying, he says, ``I just feel it would put a little more Midwestern honesty back in these people.''Hunting and fishing are the main leisure activities in Mount Sterling. According to press reports, many of the local people who go for the hobbies seem to be blowhards who come up with extra-tall tales, such as ``killing a dozen deer with a bow and arrow.''Tired of these tales, Hamlett informally proposed the ordinance to ban lying to the City Council. The council is split 2-2 on the idea. One of the council members against it says, ``I think it was only done for publicity. ... It's silly.''Mount Sterling is inhabited by only 53 people, and only four members sit in the City Council. So, the move to legislate the anti-lying ban is just a ripple. But I do not have the confidence to say definitely that this move could not spread across the United States.--The Asahi Shimbun, May 5,2003) Kababaw na dahilan. In the primitive days, lying is not only a crime punishable by cutting the tongue. Siguro maraming pipi ngayon. Quotation: Better a lie that soothes than a truth that hurts-Czech Sampalin ko kaya ito.--CAT ************* Update on the doomsday news Police raid bizarre "white cult" Police raided locations connected to the bizarre "white cult" Wednesday for minor offenses amid persistent resistance from its members, investigators said. . Law enforcers are determined to take the opportunity with Wednesday's raids to launch full-scale investigations in a bid to get to the bottom of the activities of the mysterious cult.A 66-year-old man, who is believed to be the second-in-command of the Panawave Laboratory, said the cult is poised to respond by taking legal action against law enforcement authorities."We're no harm to society, and regularly report our activities to police. We'll take legal action. We only grow stronger and more powerful whenever we are bashed. Our group will never disband," he said in an interview with the Mainichi Shimbun.The high-ranking cultist corrected a prediction that a major disaster will devastate the Earth on Thursday. "I think it will be delayed till around May 22. (Mainichi Shimbun, Japan, May 14, 2003) Ayyy meron palang postponement.-CAT

Tuesday, May 13, 2003

STAGES OF LIFE How many of us can live out parts of our personality and what parts are we suppressing ? The crucial shift in the inner part which consists of our values, goals and aspirations can throw us off balance signaling the need to change and move on to the next stage of life. The life of an adult is not easy as it undergoes the stages of development. With each stage, some magic must be given up, some cherished illusions must be cast off for what is right in one stage may be restrictive for growth in the next. There is no one right chair. As we outgrow one, we should be willing to change that is more compatible to us. In between changes, an individual has to stand up. Some manage to stand straight without wobbling. Some wobble but manage to stand straight again. It is these disruptions or crisis that make individuals Grow and Develop. You may be wondering where the cat is. She is having a nightmare for being sleepless. Fifty-four percent of women don't sleep properly, The causes, though various, are all rooted in stress -- the stress of working, the stress of not working, the stress of raising children, the stress of having no children to raise. For the CAT, it could be the stress of thinking not being able to sleep. Quotation: There is more to you that you will continuosly discover yourself and you have lots and lots opportunity and the gift of time to do so. -Wanderlust

Monday, May 12, 2003

Today is the birthday of my brothers. Nes and Ner. They are twins. Happy Birthday---

Sunday, May 11, 2003

I have discovered over the last year how much of what is inadmissible to myself I have suppressed. Not too long ago, I completely erased someone in my life. This morning, I realized there is no way, I can take him back. He hurt me again. I vowed never to be hurt again. Nobody has the right to hurt me.

MOTHER'S DAY HAPPY OR NOT PART 2 I have more mother stories to write but let me take a pause to lighten the mood of this nook by presenting an edited version of a humorous collection of words of wisdom of a mother by Mr Edgarbb to suit the occasion. >(Jude: How well Big Brother and I remember the joys and sorrows that we shared while living with ma and pa. Especially the beautiful lessons in life that ma imparted to us!) 1. Mother taught me that cleanliness is to next Godliness. "If you guys are gonna kill each other, do it outside. You lazy good-for-nothings- I just finished cleaning the house!!!" 2. Mom taught me how to pray. "If that shirt stain doesn't come off, you better start prayin to your favorite saint!..." 3. Mother taught me LOGIC. "That is so 'coz I say so!..." 4.Mother taught us more LOGIC. "If you fall off that roof, I'm going to the movies alone!..." 5. Mom taught me that vegetables are really no veggies.. “And don't stand up till you've finished your veggies!!!" 6. And mom showed us what a WEATHER DISASTER is ? "Holy cow, look at your rooms! Did a tornado touch down???" 7.Mom showed us the meaning of GRATITUDE: "There are so many orphans in this world, you oughta be grateful you've got parents like us!" 8. Mom taught me HUMOR. "If you don't stop playing with that lawn mower and you cut off your foot, don't you run away from me!!!..." 9.And my favorite bit of wisdom from my mom is the meaning of karma. "One of these days you will have your own brats who will give you same trouble.

MOTHER'S DAY HAPPY OR NOT ? The word Sisa became a byword among us friends calling each other Sisa instead of “baliw" (crazy). Sisa was the mother who had gone crazy looking for her two sons, Basilio and Crispin in the novel of Jose Rizal. Upon the invitation of a nun-friend, I visited a small town in the South of the Philippines. There I saw a Sisa. She is a permanent fixture of the town; often seen with some food handed to her by some kind citizens; humming and sometimes dancing with an imaginary partner. Gloria’s dream all through childhood was to help her poor family and have a family of her own. She finished high school and despite her wish to go to college, her mother with some more mouths to feed cannot afford to give her education that she needed in order to get a job other than being a sales girl or a maid. It was the period when nannies or governess were in demand in the United Kingdom. With all expenses paid, it was a dream job for those who do not see any career blossoming in the financial district with CPA licenses and MBA certificates. She was one of the lucky ones. She became a baby sitter for two boys whose parents traveled a lot that most of the time they were out of the country. She was loved and trusted by the couple and the children. They increased her salaries without asking her for a raise. During these years, she postponed her vacation in order to save more money. She asked her mother to have a new house constructed in a lot that she bought from the savings. The mother obliged. She would ask for more money for the construction materials. All the while she would send her photos of the dream house under construction. She was happy with her life until her employer informed her that they were moving to the USA and much to their regrets they would not be able to bring them as nanny since the boys were already past the age of being baby-sat. She was however referred to an old couple whose grown up son visited them every time he found time to be away from his job in the city. He was good and he got a girl friend. He got also a vice, liquor. It was in one of these drunken moments when the son barged in in her room. After fifteen minutes of maximum exertion of kicking and fighting, she was subdued. The old couple was kind enough to allow her to stay until she delivered the baby, who they thought was a result of a relationship that soured. The son, however, liked the baby but was already engaged to be married. It was at this point when she saw herself at the dark corner. She was looking at herself being an unwed mother and reaching a crossroad to decide what options were available to her. She got savings. She got family back home. She got a house. Yes, she got a house. She planed back to her country with the baby without even a short notice. Everybody was surprised. Her mother, her mother’s lover, her brothers, sisters and other relatives. She looked for the house. She was expecting a big beautiful house. She saw the house; exactly the house in the photos she received from her mother. She was about to get inside the gate when her mother told her the bad news. It was not hers. They just took its photos. There was no money in the bank either. The mother's lover was a gambler. She had not recovered from her shock yet, when she received the news that the father of her child was in town. She traveled to the City in order to consult a lawyer regarding her right over the baby leaving the latter under the care of her relatives. Travel time was equivalent to a day and a half in the bus or three days for the entire trip. She spent three days to look for a good lawyer; a total of six days, enough for the Father of the child to stuff some bills to her relatives' pockets in exchange for the baby. He did not waste a day more to leave the town and another few weeks to get the necessary papers to bring the baby back to his country. The woman disappeared for a few months. Every one thought that she flew back to UK but she did not. She was confined to the hospital after she was found sprawled in a sidewalk, bleeding. She never talked again. On this Mother’s Day, a young man must be greeting a mother, Happy Mother’s Day. The real mother would not hear it. She must be hearing some voices. Voices that make her alive but not sane. Quotation: No gift to your mother can ever equal her gift to you-life.

Friday, May 09, 2003

Story 7 LIFE IS BUT A DREAM Friend : Here we are. Tell you what, I am going to leave you for an hour. I am going to get something from the store and I will be back to join you for lunch. My mom asked Aling Ising to cook your favorite. CAT: Wow, but I smell something. Friend: Okay, okay. Got to tell you the truth. My mom is currently suffering from hormonal imbalances…and.. CAT: Speak Tagalog, my dear. Friend: Okay, she is in okray-okray mood again. Love sick. You know mom. CAT: And… Friend: Among the friends, I think you are the best who should be with her now. CAT: Why, if I may ask ? You are the shrink in the family. Friend: Because you have perfected the ART OF LISTENING. What she needs now is a good listener of her imagined woes. If I am going to be her shrink, I cannot promise I would not react and call the man, Jerk, dude and I know it gonna hurt my mom. Maghirap magpalaki ng MADER. CAT: In short, STOIC personality. Believe naman ako saiyo. So when did you become mature enough to understand your mother. Friend: Since the time I realized, that except for her being madrama na feeling niya CELIA RODRIGUEZ siya, she is a good mom. Single parent, single all her life but never been alone. Somehow, sometime, the role will be switched from parent taking care of the children to vice versa. It just came to me sooner. Not financial support but more in the emotional aspect. CAT: Okay, before you drench me into tears and give you MOST OUTSTANDING DAUGHTER AWARD, let us get out of here. FRIEND’s MA: Hello, my dear. Good to see you again. You have not changed a bit. It seems you hardly move from your seat the last time, I saw you. CAT: Thank you Mom. (Among us friends, we call our moms, mom). Friend: Mom, I have to run. Be back in an hour. Friend’s MA: Okay, ATE S. Friend: Ow, that is how my mom calls me. We are supposed to be sisters. I am the older one. CAT: Okay Ate S. My friend’s mom still looks young for her age. She is a Vicky Belo disciple. Being in advertising business, personality counts a lot. Besides, she became a mother to my friend when she just graduated from high school. CAT: Kumusta po kayo. Friend’s MA: Masyado ka pa ring polite. Your mom brought you up to be a fine lady. I cannot say, I am good. I got puffy eyes. I will be lying if I tell you that it is due to my allergy to make-up. CAT: Thank you for those nice words. I hope it is not that serious…that whatever cause the puffiness. Friend’s MA:: NO I have been crying for hours and I am drained. CAT: (Nice dialogue for a story, shall I make her lie in the couch or drat. I better sit still) Friend’s MA: Let me ask, when should you end a relationship. CAT: (to herself: You are barking up at a wrong tree. Malay ko sa relasyon but this is where my readings come handy.) May be when the relationship does not give you anymore the companionship, security and love that most oftentimes are the goals of the two individuals who want to spend their lives together. (WOW, did the cat say that ?) Friend’s MA: I know it is a waste of time to continue a relationship where there is no more trust. I was hurt, I am furious but I still love him. He told me that I am the greatest woman he ever has a relationship with. He sent me dozens of flowers even there is no occasion at all. We were a perfect match. Tapos nakakita lang ng bata, biglang may I turn about siya. The jerk. If he ever calls and tell me that he wants to come and he would not be able to survive a day without hearing my laughter…I would tell him go to hell.. I f he ever calls me and tell me that that was only a fling and nothing more… I would call him a…h.ole… If he ever calls me to ask me if I miss his massage of my feet, I would tell him, the foot spa is a better subsitute. CAT: Why would you not listen to him first. We have weaknesses of our own. Men think that lust is love and women think that physical attraction eads to spiritual communion. Ringgg…. Friend’s Mom: Hellow…(deep silence). Excuse me, while I take this call in my room. CAT: Okay with me. I will say hello to Aling Ising and see if the bulalo is cooked. As if on cue, my friend came. Friend: You do not have to tell me. I think the big Jerk called. If I were my mom, a karate chop and a poke in his eyes would serve him good. CAT: Remember, we can only be children to our mother . We cannot give them the company they want especially if we have our own lives to live. Friend: Tell me, how do you end a relationship ? CAT: By stop talking.

Story 6 LIFE IS A JOKE A strange thing happened to a friend of mine yesterday. Friend: Hello, I am...Do you have the copy of the book by a certain missionary who became a hostage of a rebel group in the Philippines. Phone: Let me check..can i put you on hold ? Friend: Sure. Phone: Lucky you, we do have that title hardbook cover. $ 22.99 Friend: Is there no paperbound? Phone: It's a new release and it will take a year before they are printed in paperbound edition. Would you like me to reserve a copy for you for pickup. Friend: Oh no, thank you. I will just come down and see it is worthwhile reading before I decide to buy. She checked the book in It is 5 dollar less but the shipping will make it more expensive than when it is picked up from the bookstore. Friend: (to the inofrmation) I cannot find the book I am looking for. The guy from groundfloor told me it can be found in the Inspirational. Information : What is the title of the book ? Friend: In the Presence of My Enemies Information : I cannot find it in our list. Did you say you talk to one of our sales staff ? Friend: Yes. Information: Did she tell you that we have a copy or copies ? Friend: Yes, why? Is it sold out ? Information: Am sorry lady but I do not seem to see that we carry that title. Friend: Must be another book of the same title that she thought I was interested in. Thank you anyway. hhmmm

Thursday, May 08, 2003

Story 5 LIFE IS NOT A BED OF ROSES I was ushered in by the governess ( pagandahin ang salitang maid). My friend was sprawled in her big luxurious leather sofa. She motioned me to sit down but she did not take her eyes off the TV monitor. You guessed right. She was watching a soap opera. HE: God, part of me died when you said that you are leaving for good. (Cat thinks it is highly improbable and impossible. Which part could it be?) SHE: This was not planned. This is a decision that is difficult to make. HE: But what about our relationship ? SHE: There was no relationship. If ever there was, it has nowhere to go. It is the thin line between hate and love. Hate for myself-- why I have to fall for a married man and love for a man who loves only himself. He does not think of the consequences of this stupid feeling… She reached for the remote and shut off the TV. CAT: So this is your new diversion, watching soap opera. The CAT made a gesture of beso-beso (KISSING CHECKS) by slightly touching the cheek of the friend and make a kissing sound. FRIEND: what do you expect me to do during this stork-waiting.period I have been useless since the third month of my pregnancy. Nakta mo yang sofa. Yong depression diyan sukat sa ko. CAT: Weren;’t you my friend who made dusta dusta (insult) to our friends who watched Lovingly Yours and its likes ? FRIEND: Hey, we already imported soap that does not make bubble but makes us teary-eyed. Besides, I can identify myself with the heroines. And I can put alias to my enemy using the names of the characters from the cast. CAT: Saan, alin. Battered wife ? If I know ikaw ang nagbubugbog sa asawa. (physical abuse) FRIEND: No, naman. Yong mga heroine na nagkacrush sa mga asawa ng best friends nila. CAT: Ay, not heroine, villainess. FRIEND: Doesn’ t that episode ring a bell. Ting-aling-ting-aling. CAT: Masyadong active ang imagination mo. FRIEND: Para bang gusto kong sumulat ng drama..true to life story. CAT: Baliw ka pa rin. FRIEND: because you make good material for a soap opera. Huwag nga lang may bathing scene at baka magsuot ka ng fatigue. Pero ang dialogue runs this way: CAT: Got to go. I just brought your pasalubong. I know you cannot go out without-your bp shooting up-to-the-ceiling. You are too young to have an alta presyon. FRIEND: Family disease yan. Matataas ka si ang presyon eh. Thank you. I am not thru wih you yet. Abangan

STORY 4 LIFE IS STRANGER (WEIRDER)THAN FICTION CAT: “It should die or be away forever. “ In time, I will be rich and this house will be mine”. bwaaaaahahahahaha. It was 1 a.m. The CAT could not sleep. She was sitting at her desk staring at the white screen of her laptop.”. The words were very softly spoken in a sinister voice; they reverberate to the four walls of the dark room waking the human/companion/alter ego of the CAT. SHE: Who gave you the idea that I will give this house to you when I die. This house is not mine. It is rented, silly. Besides you are not a stray cat. You are just my thought astray. Reading too much news of ‘CAT’s interest make you journey to your make-BELIEVE WORLD. MSNBC NEWS SERVICESLONDON, May 6 —Trust fund cat laps it up in London Stray feline inherits house, $160,000 fund from elderly widow He has a house and a trust fund — but will it last all nine lives, especially in a down economy? Time will tell for Tinker the cat, whose wealthy owner died recently — leaving the feline the bulk of her estate worth just under $700,000. BUT FOR NOW, it’s the lap of luxury for the former stray, who now lives in a London house valued at $500,000. Margaret Layne, 89, left the house and the $160,000 fund for his care after Tinker befriended her, the Times newspaper reported on Tuesday. The childless widow made it clear in her will that Tinker, who has lifelong residency at the house, should not stray again. “If Tinker abandons the property permanently the trustees shall at their discretion be entitled to bring the trust to an end,” the will said, according to the Times. Since Layne’s death Tinker, aged about eight, has acquired two housemates at the three-bedroom property in Harrow, north London — two other cats, Lucy and Stardust. When Tinker dies, the estate will pass to the trustees, Ann and Eugene Wheatley, who deliver Tinker’s food and milk each day. CAT: I am annoyed, exhausted and the system froze. Tomorrow the first agenda of the day is to search for rich, lonely and relative-less old people. The search for the prospective adoptor officially starts now. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Tuesday, May 06, 2003

STORY 3 ANG LIFE PARANG LIFE Many of us unconsciously write the drama of our life. Daily, we battle from crisis to crisis' drowning in the misfortunes that we have authored. Battered and bruised from these struggles, we do not realize that we always have options. Some resigned their fates to their favorite saints. Some cannot just break away from the family tradition and religious mores that whatever is bound by the Church should stick thru thick and thin to each other until death do them part. The following is a phoned-in story. Pardon me for not translating them. Ring..ring… CAT: Hellow, this is she, may I know who’s calling….. Phone: tita naman (she is not my niece nor a relative. Tita is an alias she gives to close friends. She is a fan of the comedianne/ model who popularized the word in the gay lingo) Accent Estados Unidos ka na. Si. (insert name) ito…. CAT: Ayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy(this is a softer version of the scream from the movie with the same title) bruha….Tindi ng pang-amoy. How did you know that I am in town ? Phone: Tita, tagalog tayo. Wala ako sa mood gamitin ang lengguwahe ni Shakespeare. CAT: Oksi…so saan mo naman nasagap ang alimuom (Tagalog yan) na nandito ako ? Phone: Tagalog ang sabi ko, hindi lengguahe ni Florante at laura. CAT: hindi ka pa talaga nagbabago, kikay ka pa rin. Phone: Pag nagbago ako, magkakaroon ng dilubyo, babaha, uulan . Pero bago tayo magkabahaan, kumusta na ang beauty mo. CAT: Mabeauty pa rin.. Pano ka napapaniwalaan ng mga students mo na professor ka nga? Phone: Iba ang persona ko sa klase, iha. Ako ay mayuming Maria Clara na kasing higpit ni Carp. CAT: Sinong Carp. Phone: Yong prof natin sa English na hindi marunong ngumiti. CAT: ow…so anong siyete ? Phone: Naalala mo si C. CAT: Yong kaklase nating palaging in-love pero wala namang magpakasal. Phone: Sinabi mo. May-asawa na siya. CAT: Ay ay ay, sandali, ibaba ko lang itong mainit na kape at baka matapon sa aking pagkabigla.Paanong nangyari yon. Saang Santo siya nagdasal. Ang alam ko bago ako umalis nakasabay ko siya sa St. Jude. Phone: Bakit Tita, ganiyan ka ba rin kadesperada? CAT: ‘cuse me. Iba yong ipinagdadasal ko. Balik tayo kay C. Sino ang kawawang lalaki ? Phone: Siya ang kawawa , sabihin mo. CAT: At bakit ? Phone: Kasi Tita, atin atin lang ito. Pag sila lang daw dalawa, at tumatabi siya tumitili. CAT: Sino si C? Phone: Hindi yong mister. CAT: Bakit tumitili ? Phone: Bakit ba tumitili ang mister? CAT :Malay ko. Bakit nga ba ? Aaaahaa, ibig mong sabihin? Phone: sinabi mo. CAT: wala pa naman akong sinasabi. Phone: Alam ko ang ibig mong sabihin. CAT: At paano mo naman nalaman ito. May surveillance camera ka ba sa kanilang bedroom Phone: Tita, kinuwento niya kay D at si D naman kinuwento kay E… CAT: AT kinuwento ni E saiyo. Phone: hindi si V. CAT: Ang tsismis talaga mabilis pa sa virus ng SARS kumalat. So bakit hindi siya magfile ng annulment. Phone: Pamartyr effect siya Tita. Ayaw niyang masabing hiwalay siya. CAT: Pero por dos por kuwatro, bakit ba martyr image lahat ang naririnig ko palagi. Eh pareho silang nagsusuot ng night gown. Phone: Ewan ko. Kung sa akin yon pagsasampal sampalin ko para matauhan. CAT: Hindi ba naman niya napansin na magiging kaagaw niya sa night cream yung mapapangasawa niya ? Phone: Tita, tsismis ko yong magulang ng lalaki ang nanligaw. CAT: Pero sa panahon ngayon, kahit ang mga walis na lang ang nagtatago sa closet. Phone: Hindi pa rin dito sa Pinas, lalo kung mataas ang katungkulan mo sa opisina o kaya sa gobyerno. CAT: Pero kailangan ni C, magdecide kung gusto pa niyang dumami ang lahi nila. Phone: Mahal ang magpa-annul at matagal, tingnan mo si ATE Sharon. CAT: Ate mo ? Phone: Nakarating ka na sa States, gaga ka pa rin sa mga artista. Si Sharon Cuneta. CAT: Eh di feeling artista rin siya, pagnagpa-annul siya. Phone: Sandali, tita, nabalitaan mo ba ang nangyari kay M, biglang nawalang parang bula. Di ba best friend kayo noon? CAT: Tawagan kita after an hour ha. Masama na ang tingin sa akin ng isang gagamit ng phone dito. Feeling ko kung makakain lang ako nito, matagal na akong nanguya . Phone: If I know . O sige, sige na nga. Click Quotation: I rather have them say, "there he goes' rather than, here he lies.

Monday, May 05, 2003

STORY 2 ANG LIFE PARANG SOAP OPERA Place: Tagaytay City Time : 12- 3-00 PM CAT: Utang na loob , m’re..paki rewind nga. Do I get the impression that you want to be shot in the park. Only martyrs do such a thing. (translation for m’re- an abbreviation of kumare..or mare for short. This is how you address a woman who stood as a sponsor for your child in the baptism or the mother of your god child. To my friends, this is not so. This is how we call each other instead of using our first names. The age gaps do not matter. I am not used to calling someone older than I am Ate or kuya). M’re: It is true, Mar’s.(this is her version of Mare) If ever my husband comes back, I would welcome him with open arms. We were at that resto in Tagaytay since 12 noon and my watch showed that it was half past two. A record of 2 and one half hours doing nothing but eat. Cups after cups of coffee and tea were ordered in between the never ending stories among three friends whose bond was to be a qualified single for reasons of our own. CAT: Naaman…hey Tita (a lady lawyer friend) who was busy texting her professor boyfriend. Can you knock some sense to our friend here. I can’t believe it. It is not butter. M’re: What ? (she did not get my punchline of the Flavio’s endorsement of the product of the same brand name). CAT: Wala , sabi ko maganda ka sana kung hindi ka nababaliw. M’re: I found enlightenment, Mar’s. I joined a trip to Jerusalem and although my companions are already senior citizens...some of them were even in the wheelchair, I realize I am living. CAT: But you do. You answered my calls. You responded to my-e-mails and you have traveled a lot when I was away. You are not dead. M’re: No Mars, I realized that the reason I was not living is because I was unhappy, angry, resentful and envious. CAT: Wow, who are you. What planet are you from ? Not Venus definitely. Where did you hide my friend ? She is a fast talking lady whose favorite expression is Sampalin kaya kita ng pera ko. Lawyer friend: You should add…Talk to my lawyer.(butted in while texting). M’re: I am reformed. I found out that life is not all money. CAT: Ow kaya pala..marami ka pa ring projects…But going back to the ex of yours, I heard he has already two girls. M’re. Yep, that is true. Cute babies and are commercial models in the TV. I am willing to adopt them if there is a need too. They will be my babies. CAT: Really…wow what a torture. What a martyr. Now tell me, which part in Luneta you want to be shot. I could not believe that you can even appreciate the commercial. Are you a candidate for sainthood. Just tell me what color of candle, you want me to light for you. Arghhhh arghhhhh Waiter, can you give me mineral water. Suddenly, my throat became dry. Okay, I believe you. Now can we have a drive, I want some fresh air. Lady Lawyer: Hey that is true love. CAT: Sige na nga. Pag-ibig na nga. The question is, is he coming back ? M’re: pagkahaba haba man ng procession, sa simbahan din ang tuloy. CAT. Wow, M’re, kasabihan pa yan ng mga ninuno natin. Mas matanda ka nga sa akin ng maraming tulog pero hindi ka pa naman sa categoryang Catholic of Women’ s League. Anyuway, I salute you for being that faithful. You are a gem as a wife. Hay buhay, parang soap opera. Makabili nga ng mani. (the cat approached an old woman with selling boiled peanuts outside the resto) Magkano po ? Old woman: Isang takal po ? CAT: Hindi ho, lahat ng peanuts. Lady lawyer: Are you still hungry ? CAT: Nope..Ang mani raw pampatalino. Baka madagdagan ang katalinuhan ko, maintindihan ko ang drama sa buhay ng aking kaibigan.

Sunday, May 04, 2003

THE CAT'S CACHE OF STORIES Story 1 The cat mentioned that she has a lot of stories to tell and share. The travel has made her poorer in cash but richer in resources of reflection. Bad hair moods; nothing to wear days; illness, day’s work exhaustion are nothing compared to the miseries of some people who went downhill and still feeling so discouraged that they do not have a clue where to go next. Substantial investments in stocks, penny or blue chips and plenty of money in the banks do not necessarily assure one of secured future. This was a bitter lesson for millions of people who lost their lifetime savings in the once beautiful Wall Street that has made people undergo the reverse cycle of rags to riches for many. One writer likened this to a Big Bad Wolf huffing and puffing in order to blow down the house. It turns out that even the houses that were made of sturdier materials were not spared from the huff and puff. The couple in the story lost their millions too. Not because of bad investments but because of a tragedy.I met them thru real estate agency owner-friend. They are selling their last piece of property. To protect the identity of the couple, suffice to say that they were able to belong to the millionaire’s club due to the creative talent of the wife. They enjoyed prosperity until their children grew up and have their own families. Then the tragedy struck. It came without a warning. The death of a member of a family was slow. It drained their resources. As if it is not too much, two members of the family died after incurring huge hospital bills. The woman confided that her son said that it hurts to be poor again, to be ignored by former friends, whispered about , shamed silently behind smiles. But what hurt most for her, was the separation from her grandson who was taken back by the parents who migrated to another country in order to seek greener pasture. The child pratically grew up with them. The boy slept in their bed. The husband shamelessly said that he cried when he left and he is still crying every time he misses his hugs. To the couple, the money and properties that were gone are nothing compared to the loss of the boy. The parents must have also difficulty getting the boy to love them. Time heals wounds. Years after when he comes back, he may not even remember the life shared with the grandparents. Quotation: Riches are gotten with pain, kept with care and lost with grief.

THE CAT IN A CHILDREN'S PARTY What is the cat doing in a children’s party ? This cat together with a bachelor-looking-for-a-wife-friend attended a friend’s girl first birthday. We cannot say no. Lately, the two of us have been attending christening, baby shower, weddings and birthdays of little children of our single-who-are-now-married-and-are-building-nest friends. The party is not a good hunting ground for singles-without-commitments. Most of those who came are already married and have their own “ litter” in tow except for the odd couple. One such friend has two tiny tots. One, a 3 year old hyperactive boy and the other one is a cute little girl who looks like a Japanese doll. The husband of an expectant mother “borrowed” and cuddled the baby as dry run for his father role in June. He wished that he would have the same cute baby but not as coronary-risk as the older boy. A father with a crying 2 -year old girl approached the table and asked for the parent of that boy-who played-the-question-and-answer-game-exploration-will-she-cry-if-I-pull-her-pony-tail ? The mother of the boy asked this cat to hold the baby. Meow… she does not know how to hold a baby. Shall I make her face me, oh her dress was made of slippery material……somebody, she was slipping fast my arms…The “expectant ‘father grabbed her and the baby smiled. Aw… I looked at the guilty boy. His ears had cake icing. Ahaaa…he was conducting the first taste test…with his ears ????? Curiosity made the cat asked the mother of her blood pressure readings. It seems it is still within the normal level except during times when he tried to climb their aquarium to put his plastic fish inside. Call it divine intervention, but she woke up at the nick of time before she saw the GREAT FLOOD’s comeback in her living room. Her bp hits the ceiling when he pokes the baby girl with something in order to wake her up. The cat is tempted to look under his mane those for the four magic numbers…s.x-s.x-s.x Quotation of the day: Spare the rod and spoil the child.

Saturday, May 03, 2003

HOW TO HEAL A BROKEN SPIRIT I was cracked, broken when I came to the States not too long ago. The fissure in my spirit was imperceptible to the naked eye. There were tremendous pressures for me to leave for the States. The last straw that broke the camel’s back was my failure to get the fruit of my two year sabbatical. I almost got the degree. The panel gave a passing grade . The visa had been approved but I postponed my decision. My mother and siblings were wondering what kept me from flying. Not until, I marched and wear the hood. I have to meet the members of the panel for their suggestions that need to be incorporated in the paper. One member invited me for lunch. I felt the rage as soon as I heard him insinuate to go to a place conducive to a more relaxed and intimate discussion. There was that part of me that could easily spiral out of control but surprisingly, I held control of my demons. I could have slapped him and walked out of that restaurant. The thought of the hard work, sleepless and hungry nights to finish the paper in my timetable made me cling to my other side…the part of me that does not show myself…the pain, the anger and the sadness inside…BUT the courage to say NO despite the risks. The ocean of hope broke and flooded my world. He recommended for further deliberation of my paper. The letter of congratulation from the office of the dean was nowhere to be found. The person in charge simply filed an indefinite leave. I felt discouraged. I pleaded. I hoped. The manipulative actions, the conspiracy and the cover-up not only sickened me but served as lemon juice of life to give more pain to the bruised feeling. I crawled, fought back …My adviser resigned. I felt the wall caved in and swallowed me whole. I left with a broken spirit.. It seems like yesterday. A friend mentioned to me that the person responsible for my disappointment had a stroke that left him paralyzed. Would that heal the spirit that he broke? I am looking for that side of me that cries for relief. There is much to be fixed. A new wall with fresh paint. A new floor with new tiles….An old garden with new flowers.

THE CAT's COIFF The cat badly needed a hair trim. Unlike in the past when the first thing she does in visiting the Philippines was to go to the old place of Jun Encarnacion (RIP) in this latest vacation she hardly had enough time for her “hair beauty ritual” except for the skin laser treatment “something." (this topic would be discussed separately). During the hair rehab sessions, she would endure for two hours, inhaling all the chemicals that would make her unwanted curls disappear; “ cellophane and wax” hair strands to give them a shine that remind the cat of her spinster aunts’ long stresses shining and smelling like the native delicacy that had just come out from the coconut vat (you read it right, not bath but vat). This is similar to the favorite kitchen gadget that made a barely-can-cook- Chinese become a celebrity as an instant chef/host of a cooking program. This comment came from a Jackie Chan-look-alike Chinese friend whose father is a good cook. During the cat’s pre-USA days and his pre-Australian migration, he would pick her up at home, asked his father (he can barely speak English) to cook and together with his brother who was then a student in the International School; the trio would eat noodles the Chinese way and slurped the soup noisily to compliment his father's cooking. (What is the Chinese way ? uncut noodles brought to the mouth with the help of two thin sticks called chopsticks. The longer the better, never uncut. Chinese considered noodles to signify long life. Never cut them for serving and never twist them in a fork like you do to your spaghetti). (Great and the cat wandered off again. She is supposed to be talking about hair). The feline discovered Jun Encarnacion (RIP) not knowing that he was a beauty consultant of movie stars so UTANG NA LOOB, do not think that her visit to his beauty saloon in Sampaloc was merely an excuse to see some ageing stars who had their beauty regimen for free in exchange for their thank you speech…"thank you to Jun Encarnacion for my hair and make up … thank you to (insert a name of a couturier ) for my dress…A thank you speech that the cat would mimic to distract her college" barkadas" who were busy cramming for a quiz… Thank you to (insert name of a funeral parlor-ngeek) for my hair and make up…thank you for the bag of butong pakwan from Aling Emer sa kanto,etc etc.thank you for allowing me to copy …(insert the name of the most studious and conscientious member of the clique). As this cat was saying, she discovered Jun when her hair stylist of more than five years decided to move back to the South without saying good bye. (translation: umalis ng walang ni HA, ni HO). She faced a dilemma. She developed loyalty to the lady hairdresser who she thought was the only one who could tame her rebellious hair. She tried a beauty parlor near her school. Great leaders made wrong decisions. This wrong decision of her to go there between her classes made her think that she would be a good leader someday. (wishful thinking) She thought it would just be a few minutes of nip and zip and hair blowing and the doo would just be fine. The ageing gay hair stylist was in the bathroom taking a shower, so please, if the cat may take a seat, his assistant would do the works before the “cutting ceremony”. First she shampooed her hair. Then she gave her a whole bunch of magazines after wrapping her head with a big white towel making her look like a sheik or something. (This cat realized that this was one good strategy to hold the customers from leaving. Who would dare leave with a towel and dripping hair from a beauty shop ?). The next hour was a torture waiting for the entrance of the great hair specialist (that was how he called himself). If not for the damp towel, her hair curls must have sprung up due to dryness. The trimming took another one hour. Grrr, she missed her Philosophy class. But the finished product was good. It gave body to her hair that after several months, she did do not have to bother herself thinking of where to go for her next hair coiffure. Then a friend brought her to Jun. She saw him in person. Haah and he gave her a hair cut even if his staff could very well do the service. He complimented the cat to look like somebody given a hair cut that would make people take a second look so he was doing the styling himself. He gave her the perfect bangs and a hair style that may not make the cat purr like the lady in the commercial oomphing sensuously after using a particular shampoo but it gave her the kind of Sylvester smile when he just swallowed Tweety before it is rescued by the old woman or by that angel dog of her. Her classmates thought that they were seeing Cleopatra minus her beautiful jewelries. She would have believed them if it was not end of the semester. This was the time of submission of papers. Her friends knew how to avoid the crime of plagiarism when they recycled papers that she had written without nary an evidence that these have been used by many "aspiring" writers. Until now she sports “the bangs”. Before her flight, she needed a trim and off she went to a beauty parlor. Her favorite hair counsellor (take note, the titles are glamorized…the hair must be seeking counsels for their depression…when they stand on ends because of SARS scare…hehehehe) …got to slap my hands…they kept on diverting away from the topic…so many things to write but so few minutes to write them in one sitting…) went vacationing. Half heartedly, the cat consented to have her hair done by another beauty(whatever title they want). This lady is talkative. She talked without let up…to me…to the new arrivals….to her co-workers… Gosh..this cat wished she had a masking tape. She was so incensed of the chatter-box that she closed her eyes. And boom….when she opened her eyes, she could have cried “murder” or declare war unilaterally. The bangs were cut 2 inches shorter ..making her looked like Uma Thurman in that movie Pulp Fiction with that ugly hair piece or she could be a Chinese doll except for the fact that she is not fair skinned and her eyes are bigger than those Japanese animated cartoons. She was hopeful however that it was not worse as she imagined it to be. But after that humiliating remark from a gay impersonator, she knew that she was wrong. Her friends brought her to a stand up-comedy... the latest craze in the country where humor cannot be eclipsed by war or by SARS scare. She just realized that it was a comedy at the expense of the people who paid to watch these drag queens mimic the singing divas while uttering their colorfull anguage termed as "swardspeak/gayspeak lingo oh “diva “mama and all of those sorts. They sung. They got good voices. If they lipsynched, no one would notice. Admittedly these new generations of transsexual hopefuls outdid their old predecessors whose definition of show business was a carnival with a white mouse that dizzily brought good luck to a person who picked the winning number. After their intro numbers, they welcome the audience; greet celebrants of any occasions, birth, divorce/death of love anniversaries and for a generous donation (tips to the uninitiated) to their association of mga B…., they would sing a requested song. When it was our turn to be acknowledged, a friend who was still wearing her office clothes told the trio that the group was entertaining a balikbayan and that was me, the poor cat . Poor because for the whole duration of the night, the cat was the “object of affection” by the three “gay” people…(gay as happy bading)…and their favorite was her hair do. Was it the new style in the US ?…The most beautiful of the three offered that for a a few bucks, he could give my beauty counselor a few punches…for my revenge…he added that he was once a boxer before he realized that he preferred a cleavage than a hairy muscled chest. Another one quipped that should he be given a round trip ticket, he would charm his way to get a visa so he can give her some beatings that she would not forget. The third one consoled me that in the group, with the bangs, the cat looked young that she could still passed off like a juvenile who still wears bobby sox. Translation…mukha akong bata…batang isip….hehehehe..really funny….I could have given him a pinch in his restructured nose after several rounds of green mango shake. That is the reason for the cat's need for hair trim. Excuse me while I answer the phone. It must be my new hair stylist for my appointment. Careful...I got three goons masquerading as gays. Quotation for the day: The cat in gloves catches no mice.

Thursday, May 01, 2003

YOU MAY BE WONDERING This cat can feel that the minute cells of her body are trying hard to break the seemingly regular sleeping pattern that she adopted since her vacation. The normal sleep nowadays start from 3:00 am to lunchtime the following day but since work hours start late morning, the cat has to drag herself out of the bed, do the morning rituals and try hard not to fall on her face in her desk due to sleeplessness. Upon coming home, she would pass out as soon as she hits the pillow. Two or three hours later, she would wake up. Unable to fall back to sleep she would lie awake in the dark with her mind wandering.. leaving her exhausted…Her attempt to write leaves her emptier.. No creative juices flowing…she cannot justify her sleeplessness due to creative endeavour/intellectualization like her college days when she can write a paper shortly after dawn of the day it was due for submission. She watched reruns of old sitcoms and wondered why a nanny does not look like a nanny. Tired of watching the channels showing non-stop army operations updates in Iraq, she would click the channel where guests in a talk show were hurling insults and trash to each other. Even in her passivity, she learned a lot knowing the sordid details of the underside of the culture of the country. Quotation for the Day- It is easy to learn anything because they understand everything too soon.- Emmons