Sunday, September 28, 2003

Battered Women 3

Dear Mouse, She is beautiful and smart. Except for occasional blurts due to clients’ unreasonable demand for attention in that small law office, she appeared to be normal. The pay was not that high but she was given other amenities such as lodging accommodation and flexible hours. She wanted to augment her income so she enrolled and finished her two- month course in caregiving. Soon, she was working part time as caregiver during the evening and as a secretary during the day. It was in the facility for old people when her disorder was observed. She would talk to herself relentlessly . It worsened when she had a spat with a fellow worker. Her eyes were full of hate as she screamed when the guards tried to pacify her. No one could touch her. She was transformed into an animal fighting her predators. Her employers, a kind couple committed her to a hospital for proper medication. She recovered and went back to her daily routine as a secretary after a few months. No more extra work for her. Less stress. It did not end there. She went home to the Philippines to visit the ailing father. Then she learned the truth. A dying man would not bring the secret to his grave. She was not their daughter. She was their granddaughter. Her mother is her ‘sister’ who begot her when she was fifteen. All those years, they bonded as sisters but when she got married, the illegitimate daughter was left alone with the uncanny feeling that somehow, something is wrong with her life, with their lives, with her family. She became a rebel and at a tender age, she too was involved with a married man. They planned to make their relationship legal. He has to get a divorce that was not allowed in the Philippines. So off they went to the United States. He got a divorce but could not marry her if they wished to legitimize their residence. He married a US citizen. She too should get married. Then they are going to divorce their respective spouses once they got the greencards. That was the plan. Then the unexpected thing happened. The man decided to stick to the Citizen wife. The woman married a good for nothing bum who abused her whenever he got a chance. Aside from physical abuse, she was constantly threatened to be deported. He claimed he could easily tell the authority that the marriage was a fraud. The toll of years' abuse did not manifest until she had the guts to leave him when she became a permanent resident. She relocated to a state where the husband cannot reach her. But her boy was left under the care of her in-laws. Her separation from her boy did a lot more harm to her emotionally. Upon her return to the Philippines, the tell tale signs that she was back to her old self became more evident. No amount of medication can save her. Now she lives in a world that she made up for her own. May be it is a lot saner than the insane real world that she came to know since she reached the age of reason. There are no more welts and bruises in her arms... Only in her memory. If she only knew that there was the –so-called self petition for battered spouse, she could have avoided being a punching bag of a blackmailer/abuser/ husband. But then there were other emotional issues that need to be addressed...the betrayal of her lover who she trusted her life coming to America and her mother who obviously left her on her own. The CAT Dear CAT, There is no family to support her emotionally and financially. She could have availed of the battered women services. Kris, you and me against the world live journal best suit her. The Mouse

Battered Women 2

Dear Mouse, I have friends who were battered. So abused that they are no longer capable of leading normal lives. One died in the hospital, DOA, the second has made a world of her own and the third is into hiding with her only daughter. They are young except for the woman who died. Before I go into stories of these women, let me reproduce a poem by -Carol Geneya Kaplan Today another woman died and not on a foreign field and not with a rifle strapped to her back, and not with a large defense of tanks rumbling and rolling behind her. She died without CNN covering her war. She died without talk of intelligent bombs and strategic targets The target was simply her face, her back her pregnant belly. The target was her precious flesh that was once composed like music in her mother’s body and sung in the anthem of birth. The target was this life that had lived its own dear wildness, had been loved and not loved, had danced and not danced. A life like yours or mine that had stumbled up from a beginning and had learned to walk and had learned to read. and had learned to sing. Another woman died today. not far from where you live; Just there, next door where the tall light falls across the pavement. Just there, a few steps away where you’ve often heard shouting, Another woman died today. She was the same girl her mother used to kiss; the same child you dreamed beside in school. The same baby her parents walked in the night with and listened and listened and listened For her cries even while they slept. And someone has confused his rage with this woman’s only life. The CAT

Battered women

Dear Mouse, After devoting five blogs to she said,/he said /and mother said-Joey/Kris tell all /tinutukan niya ako ng baril episode/ I join Rina Jimenez David in raising my right hand. MORE lessons from the Kris-Joey imbroglio, and then I will keep my peace. Promise... unless someone provokes me. This is not even about Kris. This is about battered women. This is about violence against women in countries where domestic violence is supposed to be a violation of international human rights as proclaimed by the United Nations in 1993. It is saddening to know that the Philippines has no law in order to protect women who are victims of domestic violence. As Rina has written,

But women's groups have long said that domestic violence should be declared a unique and special crime, occurring as it does within the setting of the home, where one should feel safest, and in the context of a supposedly loving relationship. Violence between partners -- people sharing an intimate relationship and living in a single dwelling -- violates a basic trust, precisely because the intimate relationship gives the partners extraordinary power over and vulnerability to each other.

I am astounded to discover that US , a country that leads in the promotion of civil and human rights fall short in this women rights category. The Violence Against Women Act was passed only in 1994 with the revised version in 1998. While the industrial revolution swept the nation to make it a first class economy, there were still laws that made it as primitive as countries where common laws promote wife’s beating. Before 1871, it was a legal right of men to beat wives in Alabama. isn't it horrifying mousey? A decade after, wife beating was made a crime in Maryland. punishable by 40 lashes or a year in jail. While technology that makes the household chores of women become obsolete as fast as new innovations were developed, the cause for protection for wives from abuse took a century to move in snail-paced to be propelled in motion. In 1980, ten states passed laws that make spousal abuse separate offense. Note mousey, it is spousal. It is not only for women but men as well. I can say Mousey, that the world had been unfair to women. It is not only the absence of laws to protect them but the promulgation of laws that made them vulnerable to physical and emotional abuses. Dating back to 13 century 'Rules of Marriage' written by Friar Cherubino of Siena promoted wife beating In 1500, Lord Hale, English Jurist, establishes marital exemption for rape. Sad, Mousey, sad. Excuse me, if I do not butter your bread. The CAT

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

What ? a national issue ?

People complained when the media gave so much importance to the Joey-Kris affair. Maximo Soliven scolded a seemingly unrepentant editor for bannering the gun-poking -incident of the lovers' quarrel and some criticized the lopsided news presentations even in more respectable broadsheets. It is interesting to know however that the Philippines is not different from other more developed Asian countries when it comes to newswriting business. In the confessions of a foreign correspondent in Japan, he averred that the famous titles such as the Christian Scinence Monitor, Chicago Tribune and a host of others have downsized if not downright closed their operations. He noted that articles dealt more about cults, suicides, gangs and geishas. The CAT

Kris -take 3

Dear Mouse, Once upon a time, someone told me that the reason why he hurt me is because I allow it. From then on, I made a resolve that nobody can hurt me again, ever. Watching the interview of Kris Aquino and listening to her woes about her tempestous affair with Joey that result into violent altercations make me reflect on the importance of respect and self-esteem in a relationship whether it is marital or extramarital and my resolution. The absence of these two elements should send the woman blinded by love to make choices as to what to do with future.. banish the man in her life, suffer the anguish and move on or wallow in self-pity and hate everytime the partner physically and verbally abuses her to inflict pain. My favorite part of the interview is when she discovered that the boyfirend brought her and his other girl friend to the US at the same time. Muttering some more words that I failed to catch, she faced the camera and said. Napakatanga ko talaga. Did I hear a chorused response of "TALAGA?". The CAT Dear CAT, It seems you are joining the media people cashing in on the hot news. I heard that newspapers were sold out. The Mouse

Kris -take 2

Dear Mouse, Oo totoo, selos ang pinag-umpisahan ng away. It was a text message. I said ' why don't you turn on your phone, pumunta ka, pumunta ka na dun sa meeting mo. Binuksan n'ya ang phone n'ya, sinabi ko 'Tawagan mo na ang Kuya mo, sabihin mo papunta ka na para sabay tayong umalis.' When he turned on the phone, s'yempre when you turned on the phone papasok ang messages. The name was M. It must be a code. I just read parts of it. It said 'Hindi ako makapaniwalang nagawa mo.' Binura n'ya. Nagmadali s'yang burahin. Dalawang beses pumasok yung text, nagmadali s'yang burahin. Nagmadali s'yang mag-scroll dun sa letter M. Binato n'ya yung cellphone nung nag-aagawan na kami ng cell phone. Kung hindi ka guilty sa laman ng cell phone na 'yun, bakit mo ibabato. Bago kami nagkatutukan ng baril, inaamin ko, tinapunan ko s'ya ng fluid. Tinapon ko dun sa kama, yung fluid ng Lampbergé, yan yung scented fluid yan na may amoy. Lumiliyab 'yan. Oo pinaliyab ko yung kama, pero pinatay ko ng pillow na flame retardant. Tumayo siya sinabing, oo totoo. OK. I admit it. Sinasabi nila that I grabbed at his genitals. I did. I wanted to crush it. Then sinabi ko 'Ano pa ba ang kulang sa akin?' Ilang beses mo ba akong kailangang gaguhin. Tumayo s'ya he went to the closet and grabbed my August billing statement for my cellp hone. Binato n'ya sa mukha ko at sinabi n'ya, 'Ikaw ang mapapahiya ngayon. Ikaw ang guilty.' Yun ang parati n'yang ginagawa 'pag siya ang nalalagay sa alanganin, pinalalabas n'ya na ako yung nanlalaki. But if I have any sins, it is the sin of telling too much. Yun ang sinabi ko na 'Tama na 'to. Tama na. Ano pa ba?' Sabi ko, 'Ayoko na I just want out, I'm leaving.' Dun n'ya kinuha yung baril at kinasa n'ya sa 'kin. Kinasa n'ya yung baril. Tapos siguro nakapag-isip, ni-release ang magasin. Tinapon yung baril. Yun ang pangyayari. Do not get me wrong, mousey. this is not about me. This is not a a draft of a love story that I will be writing. This is an excerpt of an interview of an ex-presidential daughter about her much -publicized love quarrel with her mayor-boyfriend. SO sensational that it was bannered in leading newspapers eclipsing other important news. People asked if this is a national issue worth landing in the front page. The CAT Dear CAT, Am I supposed to conclude that the occupants (current and past) of that Palace by the River are hounded by scandals brought about by illicit affairs. The Mouse

Kris crossed

Dear Mouse, Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. Excuse me for the cliche but I like to believe that the Kris' intense love was turned into rage that a woman who claimed that she had sacrificed so much for a man she loves is turned into an avenging Greek deity. Her last statement in her live journal holds a threat for one who crossed her. The mood jealous however tells me that once the tempest weakens, so are the warning signals. Ahh love... The CAT

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Two weddings and funerals

Dear Mouse, I really do not want to think about death. My bonding with a friend back in College brought me joy and grief. We were a happy lot then. We were seven, the magnificent seven, so they said. Now, two of them had already passed away. I still cannot believe that they are gone. Was I too busy that I postponed touching base with friends? The days turn into years and suddenly they are gone... forever. Strange, but they had the same monicker that we identified them as "Mother" and "Daughter." "Mother "was a conservative, religious and simple woman. She did not use any make-up that she thought Clinique is a place to have a check up; neither she wore fancy clothes. She was soft-spoken but with a very powerful voice that I always teamed up with her in poetry reading. Her old fashioned ways made us thought that she would not attract even a fly. (it was mean for us to think that nobody would pay attention to her). But then somebody took notice. He was young and handsome. I almost dropped my jaw when I saw him being introduced to the group. The more, I was surprised when I learned that they had gotten married even before we marched for graduation. I was happy that she was happy but I got that strange feeling that she was not. She died young. Stroke. She had already a congenital heart disease but I know she died of broken heart. Was she the one who recited Tennyson's famous "T'is better to have loved and lost and to never have loved at all". "Daughter" was the opposite of "Mother". She was the flirty type with big round beautiful eyes . She got a boyfriend way back in high School. They were a happy couple. The boy friend became a member of the group by affinity. No need for adoption. After college, they got married and separated. I cannot find a reason why two indviduals who made commitments to each other while they were in late teens would simply walked out from each other when they had sealed their relationship with rings and vows. Now she is gone.. Cancer. So young and so beautiful. Both had loved and lost. Their lives were not wasted. The CAT

Saturday, September 20, 2003

Cat , Mouse, Granny

Dear Mouse, Humans becoming more humane to the cats by banning veterinarians to declaw them. San Francisco's animal welfare commmisioners are looking to make the ctiy safe for cats' claws, urging veterinarians be banned from removing the part that the animals use to defend themselves and to shred their keepers' furniture. Read here I cannot wait to grow my nail and painted it pink. The leather furniture is just too beautiful... Meowwrrr. The CAT Dear Mouse, I did not know that your ancestors were as big as buffalos. Researchers say that they have found fossils for a 1545-pound giant that thrived million of years ago in a swampy South American forest. Read more. What happened mousey? Were you "downsized" by Noah? The CAT Dear Mouse, Women kill their husbands or lovers in a fit of anger or passion. This grannny strangled an 80 year old male friend after a drinking session. As to why, I will let you guess after reading the news. The CAT

Friday, September 19, 2003

Number three

Dear Mouse, The result of the survey of Transparency International is out. We are number three according to the news from my favorite broadsheet. A question was raised in my favorite forum, how corruption is tracked in these countries. The corruption is not tracked. The survey is based on the responses of 15 respondents, locals and expats. Our newspapers carry news day in day out about accusations of graft and corruptions that have never been proven. We bring the damnation to ourselves, so why ask why we were ranked high. Columnists say so, disgruntled corrupt senators say so, pexers say so. Who are these 15 respondents to dispute. The corruption in the Philippines makes some people rich. The corruption in the developed countries make the poor countries poorer. The CAT

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Good Meowning

Dear Mouse, I overslept again that I have to cut short my morning rituals. I just realized that I applied the body lotion in my hair and my hair/sinscreen revitalizer on my face. Is ohkay, now my hair will have more body and my face will be protected by the sunscreen. Ew ew The CAT ===== Dear God( children's prayers-when they were still children) 1. Dear God, My mom told me that you can see everything. Do not tell her where I hid her broken vase. Promise I will be a good girl. bless my ... Jude 2. Dear God, My mom told me that you can see everything. Did you see my new shoes last Sunday? Len 3. Dear God, My mom said that your commendment(sic) tells us to love our neighbor. Can there be exception. I hate our next door neighbor Dexter. He put a tape in my cat's tail. Gie 4. Dear God, Is it included in your commandment to love our teacher too? Not when you see mine. Luis 5. Dear God, Bless us and the food that we are about (except for the brocolli and the spinach.) W 6. Dear God, I saw a saint with a dog. Why not CAT ? The CAT meow meow meow

Tuesday, September 16, 2003


Dear Mouse, I saw the eyes. They were sad. The boy approached my friend seated next to me. He called him daddy. Realizing that he was not, the boy asked "where is my daddy". I know his mother. I always bump into her whenever our common friend has family occasions to celebrate. For the last two years, I have been wondering how come she does not relocate the family to the city where she is working. It was money issue. No more question. The boy followed me to the car when I went out to the restaurant to get the gift for the new Christian. He asked the same question while running around the car to avoid his mom who dashed outside to bring him back to their table. For a few seconds, I stopped her and asked where is the father. People in denial of a problem would always skirt the issue by responding negatively or by rationalization. I can see that something is wrong with the kid. He grew up with the father taking care of him while the mother was away earning a living in another State. Now, his parents are separated. It was abrupt according to my friend. The boy was just whisked away from the doting jobless father. I know someone who talked to his parents like an adult when the separation was emotionally unbearable. According to him, he was just six then and his classmates were teasing him as Putok sa buho( fatherless).His parents relented. A couple of professionals, they knew that there was no more love that bound them except for the love to the boy who wanted to grow up in a two-parent household. Despite the absence of a cat-and dog-squabble, their lives were miserable but then they lived together in one roof not necessarily in the same bedroom until the boy grew up to understand that there is no perfect marriage. My friend realized how selfish he was. He witnessed that it was a torture for both his parents to acknowledge the reality that they were drifting apart and they had come to dead end of their relationship. But rationalizing that he was a kid then who did not care about other feelings except for his own, he thought that his demand was just right. Now that he is married and have two young kids, he is too careful not to subject them to the same anguish . The marriage is not solid as a rock. There are a couple of times when he ponders on separating from the wife. Just the thought of his son asking him the same request he did years ago makes it unbearable to toy the idea of repeating the cycle. Good, if the kid can articulate to the parents what he wanted. For one who cannot, like the kid I met in the Christening, the pain will remain in the his eyes, hoping that the next person that the will see in the sea of faces is his father. The CAT Dear CAT, Here is a kleenix. Don't drench me with your tears. I might short circuit and start talking to myself too. The Mouse


Dear Mouse, There were original seven wonders of the ancient world. These were: 1. Pyramids of Egypt 2. Pharos of Alexandria 3. Hanging Gardens of Babylon 4. The Temple of Artemis 5. Statue of Zeus 6. Mausoleum at Halicarnassus 7. The Colossus of Rhodes Banaue Rice Terraces was listed among the forgotten wonders but Filipino historians claimed that it is the eight. Only one of the seven wonders survived, that is the pyramids of Egypt. The rice terraces on the other hand are slowly eroding due to underground insect infestation. It is sad that these man-made memorials of once-great civilizations are slowly disappearing from earth. There are seven cardinal sins. These are: 1.Envy 2. sloth 3. wrath 4. greed 5. gluttony 6. pride 7. lust We have also the EIGHT cardinal sin but he has retired effective yesterday. The CAT Dear CAT, Now what ? The Mouse Dear Mouse, What, now what ? The CAT Dear CAT, I do not know what you want to say about all these sevens. The Mouse Dear Mouse, I am just informing you that JAIME "CARDINAL SIN has retired already but the seven cardinal sins are still there, very much alive to our politicians and government leaders. The CAT

Monday, September 15, 2003

Are you talking to me?

Dear Mouse, Remember this blog of mine: REWIND For me, listening to people talking to themselves is a regular occurrence whether I am riding in a public commute or just watching people in the sidewalk absorbed in talking turkey, talking back or talking sense to their imaginary friend. The preacher/doomsayer/repent for it's the end of the world prophet does not faze me a bit. I know that Asian people particularly Filipinos are not afflicted by this kind of disease. If you see them talking or shouting; they are in conversation with some guys several meters away (hoy- kumusta-ka na-dalaw- ka- o- tawag- ka- ha ).But not this young Filipina. She was standing a few inches away from my side. Her eyes on me, she blurted out..".You look stupid with your dress" Whaat ? She was wearing a thick jacket and faded jeans. Her hands in her pocket. She ignored my " are-you-talking-to-me look". Then the cell phone earpiece thingie fell from her ears. Look ma no hands. Proverb of the day To each his own. Well, yes but stop using that cellphone acccessory, will you? Stop talking to yourself. CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW ? // posted by cathy @ 6:37 AM This CAT talks to itself too but she thinks she is already queer talking to a mouse. In pinoyexchange forum, a question "do you talk to your self ? elicited positive and funny answers. This busy forum requires membership so I am afraid that some may not be able to read the responses. I took the privilege of reproducing some of them in this blog. All responses are interesting though. enchiladas:aside from the looney ones aiyt? Understood na yun. But do you guys find yourselves talking to yourself? uptowngirl:All the time. BuDwEiSeR#8:Yup! nangyari pa nga sa akin na narealized ko na nagsasalita na ako,as in me voice na lumalabas sa bibig ko,hindi lang yung sa isip ko kinakausap yung sarili ko. Madalas ko kausap yung evil twin ko, at pinapagalitan ko pa, hindi kasi nakikinig sa akin eh! danicalstix: yes, in front of the mirror....masaya rin palang kausap ang sarili.. doc_02: yes. i do. pag im reflecting dun sa mga pinaggagagawa ko or sa mga situaitons na nangyayari.... minsan ako rina ng nagchecheer sa sarili ko.... littlegurl:what if while talking to yourself may biglang sumagot..??hekhek eeww..spooooky.. pagan:LOL! with matching facial expressions and thigh slapping pa yan! wahahahha! chill_2029:kaya alam ko best angle ko kasi napractice!! pati facial expression practisado!! CAT:Ow, I do talk to myself. I say...gaga ka talaga anoh? and myself answers back...gaga ka rin. The CAT

Sunday, September 14, 2003


Dear Mouse, An e-mail about memorable quotes of Ahnoold from my friend Liza gave me a feeling of deja vu when once upon a time, in a far away country, an aging actor dreamed of being a President of a nation. He was known for his "quotable quotes " that one would doubt if his intelligence quotient is higher than his pulse reading. An enteprising p.r. practitioner/politician/government executive made bonanza from compiling these quotes, passed them off as dumb jokes and raked in more money as the actor rode in popularity on this dumb image courtesy of his imagemaker. Like the President abovementioned, the moment Arnold Sch- opens his mouth, his political advisers/gurus must be wishing that the speech be TERMINATED, or pray for him to RECALL the scripted question and answer routines;and never never resort to TRUE LIES because he is a RUNNING MAN for governorship in California. These are some of his memorable quotes: 1. On decision to run for gubernatorial position "It's the most difficult [decision] I've made in my entire life, except the one I made in 1978 when I decided to get a bikini wax.- "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno". 2. On unemployment problem "We have to make sure everyone in California has a great job. A fantastic job!" 3. On economic issues "The public doesn't care about figures." 4. On the environment issue "Don't worry about that." 5. On gay marriage "I think that gay marriage should be between a man and a woman." 6. On taxes "From the time they get up in the morning and flush the toilet, they're taxed. Then they go and get the cup of coffee, they're taxed....This goes on all day long. Tax, tax, tax." 7. On Clinton's impeachment "That was another thing I will never forgive the Republican Party for. I was ashamed to call myself a Republican during that period." 8. On bodybuilding "The c**k isn't a muscle so it doesn't grow in relation to the shoulders, say, or the pectorals. You can't make it bigger through exercise, that's for sure." I have to end it here mousey, you need parental guidance to read other quotes with sexual innuendoes. I will be back The CAT

Saturday, September 13, 2003

Population-bane or boon(Whew at last)

Dear Mouse, I hate analyzing things. When my professor gave us the paper on Brain Drain: boon or bane, I morphed into an absent-minded, stressed and don’t-talk-to-me subhuman. The paper would be due after a week and I had to arm twist some of my classmates that I chose to become my respondents in the mini-survey that I conducted in order to get their perceptions. The professor did not require us to make a survey. He just wanted our honest to goodness views about brain or brawn leaving the Philippines to seek greener pasture (pardon me for the use of much abused description of a first class economy country)whether it is twisted, surreal or hair/wig-raising opinions. I went beyond that. I was more confident if I can shore up my argumentation with injections of other people’s thoughts. A reader may think that there is no need for debate…hands down, population boom is bane. Too many mouths to feed, resources being depleted faster than they can be replenished and unemployment results as more people of working age join the work force. Japan, a country that solved the problem of shrinking land spaces due to growing population half a century ago, by expanding its territory thru conquest learned the lesson the hard way. So instead of increasing the Space variable, it decreased the population factor that resulted into zero growth for many years. It did not realized however that time would come when working people would retire and a new generation has to take over. That time has come. The country’s labor pool is shrinking. One solution offered is to welcome laborers from poor nations in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Can we say therefore that population is boon and not bane. The highly populated nations provide labor force not only for their own production requirement but for world as well . I do not know, mouse. I consumed a lot of megabytes writing this article and my brain has lost a few ounces in this mental calisthenics. I said, I do not want serious topic. It makes me delirious. Thudddd(sound of body falling due to exhaustion). The CAT Dear CAT, How about relating these two topics of brain /brawn drain to population boom. The Mouse Thudd...

Guilty, obsessed and tickled pink (not in that order)

Dear Mouse, Okay, guilty as charged, I digressed. This is not supposed to be my blog for today. It was more of a discussion of serious topic-population. I have been carrying the disk where I stored my first sentence about the topic to the workplace>home>workplace>home for a week now but I have not added anything not even a word... just a comma. I hate to admit it, I cannot be a serious writer,(wannabe). So Metropolitan, a guy who posted in my private message that he likes my blog...( this cat is tickled pink...ahaaa someone took notice of my blog) other than my brother, my friends especially Wxyz...that sometimes they can be funny...oh yeah, I chose to be funny in the midst of the hopelessness, the chaos and the political turmoil that my country is undergoing right message is i am really funny. :) It is not because of the writer's block that I was not able to update my blog because I am just a wannabe writer...but it was due to my obsession to have a Filipino Channel installed... I am missing one fourth of my life...missing the alternative entertainment from the Senate-the fact-finding comiittees discovering talents...comedians...drama queens...crying gentlemen and dancing queens. I saw an ad about one month-cable service and installation-free for Filipino channel from the cable company, I am subscribed to. I called up the toll-free number... me: heylo (got to adopt their accent so they would understand me)...this is the CAT, i am interested in your promo regarding..blah blah.. csr: are you calling the right number? me: yes, if this is 1-888 blah blah. csr: yes, it is but i never heard of such a promo? telephone dead. resurrected it by dialing the same number... csr: heylo, i am... how may i help you today? me: i am ...about the promo..blah blah blah csr: ow, may i direct you to...please hold... me: sure ring...automated machine message: all our csr are busy right now....blech... The cat decided to multi-task by arranging the stuff in the pantry while waiting for a customer rep to be available......i was in my fifth "carne norte" pyramid level of arrangement when a human voice piped in the speaker-phone of my cordless...speaker phone.."yes, how may i help you?" Avoiding to yell, i put my earphone and plugged it in the cordless hanging conveniently in the cabinet's door..."yeah about this promo of yours...but im still yelling...(groan). csr: i have never heard of such a thing but I will direct your call who may have info about it...please hold...( i thought, I am going to ask where ?) It was man's voice who is tasked to respond to my simple you have this promotion about TFC, yes or no. Csr: ma'am, can i get your last name, the service address and the tel. phone.... me: for goodness sakes, just tell me if you have this promotion. Csr: we do not have the promotion that you are talking about. me: ow, that is more like it. BUT WHY IN THE HELL DID YOU RUN THIS AD...( I do not want want to be bitchy, I AM A CAT). csr: ma'am , i would like to advise you to bring that copy of the ad and demand from the nearest to give you what is stipulated in the ad. me: are you kidding? i still have to look for the store. click Direction-challenged as I am, I am pretty, it may take me a half day just to find it, argue with some real people and it will not make my day. But then, I said, i have this obsession, just like fatal attraction...or a stalker to his stalkee...I called up the number again. This time, a woman answered...and ..maybe she was already oriented that a crazy obsessed CAT has been inquiring about a promo...that she readily asked me to read the fine print of disclaimer of sort (is that the right word) new customers only...and i thought I am a new customer for the Filipino channel...owwwww..... now about that population...ew...time for me to go...Christening again.... The CAT

Thursday, September 11, 2003

My Dream Wedding

Dear Mouse, The judge asked for the rings. Funny, I cannot find them. Funnier, the judge gave us golden hoops that looked like rings. Unperturbed by my reluctance to accept them, she resumed her monologue-like recitation of the I DO prologue... do you accept...the groom ...a Jim Carrey, look-alike- hunk said I do and slipped on the ring to my finger of my right hand ? ?????Bad omen, I thought. It is a ring on a wrong finger. Wrong partner ? It was my turn...Do you accept...this is crazy, but the judge looked like judge judy to me. She has to repeat the question three times. I guessed, I was not paying attention. I was distracted by my pair of shoes as I looked down on th floor. I was wearing a pair of canvas shoes... How come the floor has grasses instead of carpet.? She repeated the question again, this time she got a bell on her hand....i thought ... what is she doing with that bell ? Is she going to ring it the moment, I say yes...Weird.... Then she was a long sound but it does not sound like a bell. It sounded like my alarm clock...Ooops. just a dream. Yes, mousey, the antihistamine that I took to deal with my allergy had a strong effect that gave me more hours to sleep and additional hours to have a dream. My dream once again gave me the opportunity to see the future. My classmate in College called to invite me in her wedding this Oct. 11. Give me one or two more dreams that predict the future and I am ready to wear a turban and charged a fee for one who wants her dream interpreted. The CAT

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

Do not try this at home-erm in going home

Dear Mouse, Many hardworking Filipino employees lost their jobs when the government ruled that only USC can get employment in the high security risk airports. Ladies cannot bring their favorite vanity stuff such as manicure sets, needlesets and other pointed objects that can be used as lethal weapon inside the plane.There was a time when the security was so strict that shoes were required to be removed for inspection.--- But a shipping clerk outsmarted all the security precautions by being stupid. From the Associated Press- DALLAS (Sept. 10) - A homesick shipping clerk had himself shipped from New York to Dallas in an airline cargo crate, startling his parents - and a deliveryman - when he broke out of the box outside their home. Charles D. McKinley, 25, was arrested and jailed on unrelated bad-check and traffic charges after his overnight odyssey. Federal officials are considering additional charges of stowing away on a plane. Uhhhm, don't try this in the balikbayan box. The CAT

Sunday, September 07, 2003

A stick

Dear Mouse, Shame on me. I keep on praying to win a lotto so I can start a kitchen soup for the poor (don't mind me mouse, I am just running a temp) while Mother Teresa started her apostolate with one stick and the ground. Some people may think that it was her early exposure to the poverty in Calcutta that inspired her to get out of her religious order to be able to work outside the convent but it was not. In fact, she started her life as a novice in Darleejing, a fashionable resort where balls and fetes were attended by British officials, bejewelled Maharanis and Maharajahs. According to her biographer, she worked as a teacher for 17 years and later on became a principal of a girl school run by the Church.Then the CALL came. As to what really motivated her, was the same question I attempted to ask a group of nuns in the province, I visited. Living simply, these nuns try to make a diffrence in the lives of poor people they serve. They are not the conventional nuns that many people know. One can drive, the other can be a poor mechanic and the rest teach the poor children in the community.They still wear their white habits though, although the hemlines are a little higher. Their lives are so simple that many of them did not have the opportunity to own ordinary stuff that we take for granted because we have more than one too many. One nun had the, I-wish-I -have-one-too-look when my sister brought the pair of shoes she had promised during her previous visits. Everytime I get inside a Wallgreen store and see those inexpensive made in China umbrellas, I am reminded of the young nun trying to shield herself from the onslaught of rain and wind with her small broken umbrella, the only property that she can claim as hers. I cannot forget the facial expression of the nun who for the first time rode a plane. It was a mixture of delight and fear as she prayed the rosary throughout the duration of the flight. It was not her fear of flying that made her request that the fare that was supposed to be for her flight back to the City be donated to the convent. She felt guilty for enjoying the ride while her "sisters" endured the uncomfortable road trip in a rickety van. Mother Teresa felt the same way when she was offered a bed for a night. She thought of the poor people sleeping in the cold concrete . I never thought of it when the Mother Superior assigned me the only airconditioned room that was meant for Visiting Important People. She thought that being used to cold weather, I might not be able to tolerate the heat. I could have declined and stayed in an ordinary room. I guessed I am not really cut out to be a nun. My older brother thought so too when he saw my notebook filled with my handwriting, I want to be a NUN and started teasing me 'till I cried. Anyhoo, I cannot imagine a CAT and a mouse in a convent. The nuns can break their meditation to shout.eeeek a mouse. The CAT

Up and Down

Dear Mouse, I cannot understand these humans. In the Philippines, coup or any news about government destabilization attempts would bring the value of the peso against the dollar-down. Bad economy. My friend whose retired mother receives dollar pensions in the Philippines would quip "naincreasan naman si Mama" every time the currency exchange rate is favorable to the dollar. In Japan, on the other hand, the appreciation of the value of yen gives them jitters. It goes up against dollar, bad economy. Yen gives cause for jitters The Asahi Shimbun Japanese financial authorities are watching nervously as the yen appears to resume its ascent against the dollar.Upward pressure on the yen has been growing as more foreign investors buy the currency for purchases of Japanese stocks, which look more attractive with the Nikkei 225 index hovering above the 10,000 line.So the influx of the world's money into Tokyo stock markets could, ironically, become a negative factor for an economy still threatened by deflation and the question of nonperforming loans.``Should the yen rapidly appreciate under these conditions, it could hurt the expectation for recovery,'' a Finance Ministry official said.Takashi Yamanaka, senior economist of UFJ Bank, said, ``The current scenario of economic recovery, which is mainly based on the assumption that exports will increase, could collapse at once should the appreciation of the yen go on further.'' Mousey, I better leave the issues to the more cerebral group of bloggers. In the meantime, let me finish the book about Mother Teresa. The CAT

Pets or Pests ?

Dear Mouse, Isn't it sad. When pets lose their usefullness, the humans regard them as pests and they dump them if they can. Pet dumping in Japan is a problem. According to a survey,about 60 percent of the pollees complained that "too many dogs and cats were discarded" in the streets.Among pet owners, 73.6 percent of dog owners and 28.1 percent of cat owners said they have not had their pets castrated yet.When asked about what they would do if they couldn't look after their pets anymore, 55.3 percent said they would search for a new owner, followed by 25. 4 percent who said they would take the animal to a public health center.About 70 percent of them said that they would accept the fate of ownerless pets which had to be destroyed. (Mainichi Shimbun, Japan, Sept. 6, 2003) In the Philippines, the askals would not live for 24 hours in the streets. The big-bellied devotees of San Miguel would treat them as manna from heaven. CATS would, as long as they do not wander near a siopao factory(oops). In Wyoming, a cat wanderer was held hostage for $ 50. Neighbor hold trespassing cat for ransom Associated Press GILLETTE, Wyo. -- Deryl Miles is accused of cat nabbing. Miles, 55, allegedly kidnapped his neighbor's cat and held it hostage for $50 after the animal wandered into his yard. Surrounded by police, Miles called a local newspaper from his trailer and said "I've taken (the cat) legally because it was trespassing on my property." Miles refused to release the cat, and was arrested after leading police on a brief chase around his yard, court documents stated. ©2003 SF Gate Do not worry about me, mousey, if ever I wander, the humans in the coffee shop will look for me …will they? Meow….yes, they did one time. The CAT

Friday, September 05, 2003

Walang lang

Dear Mouse, I believe in miracles , so was my mom. If she were in the Philippines, ten years ago, I am sure she would have joined the multitide who went to La Union and witnessed the visionary knelt for hours; eyes focused on to "SOMETHING" and dictated the messages that he received from the "LADY". I did not go, despite the prodding of some friends. This is not the kind of " miracle "I believe in. Years after, that visionary is in the show biz. Read the excerpt of a write up about him/ her. Nieva now a show biz star Posted: 8:48 PM (Manila Time) | Sept. 04, 2003 By Mozart Pastrano, Contributor Inquirer News Service YOU think being a teenage "visionary" who could see the Virgin Mary and receive her messages was the greatest performance of Judiel Nieva's life? Well, where were you Sunday night? During show biz-y ceremonies at the University of the Philippines Film Center in Diliman last Sunday, Nieva -- now 26 and going by the name Angel de la Vega -- made his screen debut with the premiere showing of the film "Siklo." In it, he plays Angel, a woman who falls in love with her new neighbor, a young man named Mark (played by the boyish VJ Mark Ocampo) who loves to toy around with a video camera. A crucial scene showed the two making love: sensual shots of flesh, sweat, and passionate kissing in the grassy outdoors. "Nahihiya nga ako," Nieva said after the screening. "May love scene ako, may kissing scene, may violent scene pa." In "Siklo," his character wakes up in a hospital room. A doctor exclaims, "It's a miracle! You're alive!" Excuse me, if I say shi..oooops, shoot. The CAT

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

Barbaric ?

Dear Mouse, Some self-loathing /deprecating Filipinos wrote in one of the forums, how barbaric the Filipino culture is. These culture bashers will always blame culture everytime one or two Filipinos did something bad. Someone has to tell them that the Pinoy who is accused of the killing his whole family did not decimate his family because it is the rotten culture of the Filipinos. Hello....if ever he did the heinous crime, it could have been due to extreme emotional disturbance or aberrant behaviour that any individual from any race may be suffering from. I wonder what these Filipinos would think about this news about a gang of girls in SF . Hill gang preys on women Police in S.F. surprised by savagery of attacks Anastasia Hendrix, Chronicle Staff Writer They call themselves the Hill Girls, a violent clique of about 20 young women who live in Potrero Hill's public housing and who have been attacking women in San Francisco's toughest neighborhoods since the beginning of the year. "These women are extremely violent, and they are not locking themselves into distinct boundaries the way many male gangs do," said Inspector Tony Chaplin of the police department's gang task force. "These are mostly crimes of opportunity." In one instance, gang members drove to a victim's home and tried to get inside. When they failed, they damaged her car by breaking the windows and bashing in the rest of it. One victim's elbow was shattered with a baseball bat as her 5-year-old son looked on. An infant was torn from another woman's arms and thrown to the ground. "Some of them just said they don't really care about the children," Broberg said. "Some said, 'We have kids, too, and we left them at home, and you shouldn't be out here with kids anyway.' " Another woman was bitten repeatedly on her back, breaking the skin and requiring a tetanus shot. Barbaric ? The CAT Dear CAT, I saw a barbaric killing yesterday. That mouse in the glue trap did not have a chance. It could have survived if it was given more time to wiggle itself out of the sticky situation it was in. The handyman did not give it a chance to have another lease of life. I cannot write what he did. It was gruesome. Arggghhh The Mouse

Tuesday, September 02, 2003

Divorce, anyone ?

Dear Mouse, Lately, the humans in the coffee shop were spending extra time now that there were new customers. Two of them even dragged one of the the tables outside and engaged in mudpie-throwing. The other day, I digressed by writing about my friend's favorite statements to parry questions about marriage. Now, I digressed again by recording the conversations of my favorite humans on divorce. Len:. Divorce and separation are financially devastating. Money problems usually drive a wedge between two people who are otherwise in love with each other. Wander: There are many number of reasons why separation and divorce happen but I am stressing the point that money problem may not be the number one issue but it could be an integral part... Philamgypsy: Now money is of course an integral part. How can you meet even the basic needs kung walang pera??? It becomes stressful ...Like a domino effect, it is the beginning of the end if one is not solid or strong, or if one is emotionally/mentally weak, or immature. Ibs: Separation incurs two sets of overhead in a reduced income. The worldly matters will all eventually matter. Details from/to the nitty-gritty of couple's finances will be in the hands of a ticking money machine. The more emotional the divorce is, the more expensive it will be --- harsh reality. Len: For others where money is not a problem, emotional hunger may come between them too. One or both fall out of love, one gets to meet another at work and falls in love with another person, one discovers a character flaw that he / she finds unacceptable ( commonly called irreconciliable differences or incompatibilities ) , or one is too busy to meet the other's emotional needs.Yes there are hundreds of reasons. Philamgypsy: Emotional Hunger.....a person at times is not aware that he/she is emotionally hungry. Cannot articulate, as again culturally, di yan pinaguusapan, or EGO will block it all, kumapa ka sa dilim, or read my mind. Lollololol I don't mean to be insulting here, but even some "educated" people are not aware of this one. Dadaanin yan sa passive-aggressive, padabog dabog, or walang kibuan till doomsday, matira matibay, Gie: I couldn't have said it any better, Gee. Yes, when a couple cannot see eye to eye and refuse to compromise, it is the beginning of the end. Combine that with all the little annoying things and sum it all up. The sulking and the one who knows it all, not listening to each other, etc., etc. I like how Len described it, emotional hunger which when not filled is the worst hunger of all. W: Perhaps, laziness of a partner drives one to fall out of love but unfaithfulness is the more mitigating factor, don't you think so? Ibs: Unfaithfulness engenders mistrust. When trust is broken in a marriage, problems fall like dark shadows across the harmony path. The pain is real and it constantly interferes with the couple's daily activities. Moneyed or not, couples start arguing about finances. Walls are created instead of bridges and distance separates. Philamgypsy:There really should be a class in Marriage/Parenthood. They should offer this class before college. They should teach Foresight 101 and Survival 101 before entering college. Jude: There are classes... not in college but they can be found in the actual classroom of life. My husband and I took the course for long years. Philamgypsy: Psssttt...somebody might be reading this, matatakot magasawa....Pls. don't, If you're fortunate enough to run into this section....Just take some good notes, trust me, there are many happy marriages out there because they've got the basics in place and yes, prayed along the way. Mousey, can you understand a thing? The CAT Dear CAT, Not a thing because I refuse to understand. Excuse me while i take a drink from your cup. slurppppp The Mouse

Back to salt mines

Dear Mouse, Last Friday, one of the executive assistants told me not to spend the long weekend in one place. I did what he said. Saturday morning, I slept in my couch in the living room. Yawn.... Saturday afternoon, I had my nap in my bedroom. A total of 6 hours for the whole day. Yawn... The culprit is the time released pain killer, I am taking for my back pain. I really have to stay away from this pain killer. It makes me drowsy all the time. Sunday, I spent three hours talking over the phone. Yes three hours, talking about politics, blah blah blah. Damn that Filipino channel. I have it uninstalled after the Erap trial. Now that the political circus is in town again, my masochistic streak drives me nuts for missing the whole telenovela series fully captured by the television and other media. I cannot blame my favorite sassy lady-lawyer-writer for expressing despair over what is happening in the Philippines. As usual, I have expressed hope. I found the reason why I still hold on to this thought. At the end of the second sequel of the Lord of the Rings, the friend of Frodo, the fat, short , loyal friend assessed why the heroes died when they could have just run away and avoid the violence, the killing and the war but they held on and fight because of the goodness that they see and hope would triumph at the end. Kaiyak ano, mousey. The CAT

Monday, September 01, 2003


Dear Mouse, I just received an invitation-again-Christening of my friend's firstborn. This time, it is a small crowd, limited to close friends and relatives only. It will be held in a fine restaurant. This is the third Christening that I am attending this year. In all these celebrations of a baby becoming a Christian, I tag along my bachelor friend hoping that he can meet a nice lady for a wife. ( Yes, mousey, that is how desperate he wants to get hitched but fall back the moment, the woman is hinting commitment. argggh Martians). The FAQ would come up again, I know. So how come you're not married yet. Who? me ? Ow, he you mean? Saiyo pala F. mas matanda ka kaya ikaw sumagot. Some of responses that are meant to say...hey stop it or ... 1. If I get married, I am depriving you the joy of asking similar questions everytime we meet in a a guy whose breaking the ice statement is ikaw kailan...magkakababy-- 2.I do not want to contribute to the population explosion---to a guy whose question is- napag--iwanan ka na-kailan ba kami maiimbita sa binyag---( it is just me talking to myself like Gollum, kasal nga wala pang imbitasyon...binyag pa...hehehehehe) 3.Yes, I am married to---my house mortgage, my car amortization...blah blah- to a guy whose questioning is designed like a survey with close-ended statement answerable by yes or no...-hey, are you married already..put a check to your answer () yes () no. 4. I am waiting for my future bride to have her a guy whose question is..wala ka pa bang nakikita ? 5. I might be disinherited by my mom. I do not want to miss that little island she owns in a guy whose question is-- time to get yourself a wife... 6. I eat at my mom's house. libre na ..I don't even have to be nagged to do the dishes-for a statement that assumes that a wife is homebody and can cook... 7. At least,nobody tells me to get my ass off bed except the alarm clock...-to a question-how can you manage being alone.... 8. Are you kidding...I am in the internet for hours while watching a DVD and eating my favorite ice cream - to a are you not lonely question... 9. I also share my credit card--to a statement that poses no question but more of encouragement - para may katuwang ka sa pagkita... 10. No, thank you...the interest in the mortgage is a tax deductible that does not whine- for a statement that pertains to lower income tax liability... What about you ? who me ? Hindi pala effective ang gayuma.... The CAT