Painting Black: August 2006

All because of Prada

"Cheers to the job that pays the rent." So was the toast Andy and her friends made in Devil Wears Prada. The moment I heard it, I couldn't fight the urge to raise my coke and click it to Eden's and Ercel's, my movie buddies. It turned out my copycat toast was the highlight of our movie moment...well, second only to the lamb Gyros from Cafe Meditterian that we devoured before the movie even started.

Truth is, as much as I feel that I am blessed, I can somehow relate to the movie...err..maybe just that single line. The movie came across as blah only sprinkled with Hollywood glam here and there to raise it to the level of "watchable." Unappealing as it was, that single line stood out to me the most and got me to thinking that I should somehow make a pseudo-assessment of my so called life.

My job pays the rent, along with other things necessary, and sometimes, some things that aren't as necessary...but I'm not really sure if this is where I should be. For one, I could swear my brain is relapsing here. On the contrary, I don't hate my job. In fact I adore it. Who wouldn't love a job that lets you come in anytime you want? Or at least, most of the time. I guess the loose, lenient rules and the long period of idleness after a toxic project is put to bed, is seriously getting to me. While most people would kill for a job setting like we have, I think I need a break from my catatonic state. I probably need a bit of challenge. I need to be least once in a while. To boot, I thinkI am losing my communication skill as well. It feels like I'm not in my element anymore.

Buuut after saying all that, I think I'd have to antagonize myself since I perfectly know that I am far from being a TW guru and I may be a little too off in saying I need challenge. Dang, life is indeed a complex bitch. I used to joke that my employment loyalty has an expiration date. I'd hate to see the joke materialize but when I get tired of something, I do lose focus and interest, and all things essential to making a solid career. It's probably not such a pretty good image to take on, but I think I am still searching for my own niche, for my special place in the sun and all that bullcrap (pun intended).

I am somewhat like C, we both claim that we aren't ambitious. I don't really give much thought about climbing the corporate ladder. The weather down here is just fine. But of course, it shouldn't hurt to roll my sleeves and play the game. But the million dollar question is, do I really want this game in the first place? Sure it pays the rent and gets me through the day all day of my yuppie life, but how do i know if my childhood dream of being a Bayanihan dancer is my eternal happiness all along? Argh, midlife crisis, why do you have to come too soon?

Picture picture

The first camera I've ever seriously handled was a Pentax SLR film cam way back in college. I chose it myself for the school paper's use with no apparent professional photography reason apart from the fact that it fits the paper's budget of 15-20k. What I loved about it is that you can dismantle the flash and the lens for easy carrying and storing, plus, you can do amazing effects by just adjusting (or changing) the lens.

That's all about everything I know of college photography. As long as the subject stays in the middle, the clicks are stable, and the shots come out clear, there's no fretting to be had. But even with my short attention span, I love photography...or at least I appreciate nice photos.

As a late birthday gift to myself, which goes without saying that it falls under the category of DEBT, (Nick, thanks to the nth power!!!). I got a digital camera (although Myk puts it as "just one of those nice-to-have things"). Quite pricey for my taste, but I love it, so no regrets from this girl ;). My new Nikon Coolpix 5400 is quite old (oxymoron bring it on!) as it is a 2003 release, but I got it way cheaper than the Canon Powershot A620 that I had hoped to buy (thanks to David's connections). I specifically love the flip-out LCD similar to Powershot, although a tad too small. The black finish gives it an SLR look and feel (feeling!). I love the auto and scenes features for easy point and shoot moods. And I love the fact that Nikon is good at macro shots. You can actually come as close as 1cm to your subject and see the details come out perfectly defined.

Here's a play at Nikon's macro mode.



Rubber slipper

Pebbled counter

Comfort drink

We called off our Avilon Zoo adventure since it is quite impossible to commune with the animals on a wet, rainy, day like today. With no Gabbie to accompany me, I thought I should finally catch up on my reading, instead. A Million Little Pieces still lays half-read along with all the other books I brought home from the Powerbooks warehouse sale several moons ago, and it is my bad that these books lay idle on most occasions (I half-blame them addictive TV-series DVDs).

To further evoke that I-feel-like-reading-today sensation, and to complement the unperturbed, relaxed, monsoon atmosphere, I thought of making myself a nice, thick, hot chocolate :). Mind you, by thick I mean serious melt-in-your-mouth thick. The first time I made a hot chocolate, I let the milk-tablea mixture simmer for a good 20-30 minutes by accident. This lovely, yummy, kitchen accident made Leo and our friend, Eva go gaga over my hot choco. I, on the other hand, always make sure that there's a glass (or tea cup) of milk available to wash down the chocolate. Normally, I use one sweetened chocolate tablea to one cup of fresh milk, but since I already have a half kilo of premium chocolate (tastes a tad sweet, much like your regular choco bar) sitting on my kitchen counter (bought from Deutche, a chocolate stall in Mega Mall), might as well embark on another kitchen adventure and skip the tablea just this instance.

I heated two cups of fresh milk (I used CowFresh) and made thin slices of chocolate from the big slab, about 150-200grams.

Then I slowly added the strips of chocolate to the milk, mixing it using a whisk. To give that extra-thick texture to the drink, I bring the heat up to medium and let the mixture simmer some more. When you get a faint tug in the consistency of the mixture, it is a sign that your hot chocolate is thick enough. You can always pour in more milk if you like it a little more soupy. Serve in a mug or tea cup, add some marshmallow bits, and enjoy with your favorite rainy day book :).

(If you want a silky, gooey texture, you can bring the mixture to simmer some more, and you'll have the perfect chocolate dip for your churros. One of these days, I might try making churros myself :p)


I went to Robinsons Galleria to get myself lunch to go before i fetched Leo from the airport last Friday. Just fronting the mall entrance was the Greenpeace stall encouraging mallers to sign up and support the organization. Having visited the Greenpeace website a couple of times before, I thought of signing myself upand pledging my support. The catch is, by support, they mean monetary support (i think it was the main purposeof putting up a stall, in the first place). I thought of backing up right then and there, but I realized that this is a chance for me to really help the environment, and small contributions from random people will definitely go a long way in protecting Mother Earth. I debated with my thoughts a little and decided to go on with my pledge, anyway. Besides, what is a few hundred bucks debited quarterly from my credit card, right? Erm, it's actually quite a bit for a scrooge like me, but hey, this is Mother Earth we're talking about. After all, I can stop my pledge with a simple phone call to my credit card company should I decide to do so. Besides, it's also a nice way of giving back something to this planet we call home. It took care of me for 28 years, and I think it's just fair that I do something to take care of it somehow.

The famed Greenpeace ship, Esperanza, is in the Philippines, and a free invite to tour the ship is given to those who sign-up for support. Also, if you plan to go there for a look-see, you may just catch Angel Aquino as she holds a story-telling session for kids. Visit their website by clicking here for more information. You can pledge any amount that comes from the heart, which you can instruct to be debited from your credit card or bank account via monthly, quarterly or annually deductions :).

I am 28!

Another candle, another year, none the wiser :p. I just turned 28, yes, 28 (there's some kind of eerie feeling to it when one says's like wisdom should be dawning on me or something to that effect). Anyhoo, the years may continue adding up to my age, but i will still probably feel like I haven't grown mature one bit. Erm, I'm not even sure if that thought is good or not, but what the heck, I know myself. I am still 100% childish. Exceptions of course, include life and death decisions, and the like, where maturity comes effortlessly natural.

Officemates ask me how it feels to be 28 (i know this is one silly question), and i simply tell them that it feels exactly like what I felt the day before my birthday. It's not like I am expecting to feel a whole new level of undiscovered feeling I haven't felt before. After all, age ain't nothing but a number.

Oh yes, the birthday celebration...erm, there's no time for one this year and will probably have a late celebration next week at the Avilon Zoo with family :). Leo and I were busy peddling live crabs to unsuspecting churchgoers in the Sunday flea market. Leo brought 25 kilos of them from Capiz. I'm not so keen about selling, I am one bad crab tindera, I'd rather eat the whole bunch than sell them. Despite that, only 3 kilos remained and it was, after all, a fine day (erm, actually, if it counts, I tried the Karaoke Hub in SM Bicutan while waiting for the rain to stop on our way home, aliw hehehe).

On hindsight, I am more thankful than I have ever been. I have been blessed and able to bless back the people I love in my own little way. Honestly, I am not yet where I imagined myself to be a couple of years ago, but I am working on it :) and I have my family and my friends to thank for making the journey worth taking :) Love y'all!

And just for the heck of it, I made the following wishlist. Not that I am expecting anything from my family and friends, but creating one makes me want to *cough* save up. Here goes:

5. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
4. A bookcase to decently store my books
3. Sounds too red-neck but I want a fresh linoleum on my floor
2. Lotsa ornamental plants for my balcony
1. A digital camera that can convince myself to afford (either Canon Powershot A620 or Nikon Coolpix 5400)

Lie to me

Metrobank Emerald sucks! What kind of customer service lets you wait on the queue line for a full one and a half freakin hours?!! If i didn't need to deposit money, I wouldn't have gone through that agonizing wait. I arrived at 2:30 in the afternoon and finished up at 4pm. They see the throngs of people and only two tellers are open to accomodate all of it. Man, man, so frustrating. And their sales pitch says "you're in good hands." Yeah, lie to me.

Full Moon

He mesmerizes her, she captivates him. He amuses her, she charms him. They could have been satisfied suspended in that sweet limbo, but he was made weak. Was it the moon that lighted his flame? She can never tell. But that one stolen embrace stirred everything out of place. They both know they can never be, and the more they try to wish it away, the deeper it sows a feeling that feeds on them…until they catch a different light in each other’s eyes…until a smile kindles longing…until a simple touch burns.


She breathed him and stopped living. Though he will never know, he was her master and she, the slave. Time and space tamed her desire to be owned by him. But the phantom in white, her omen, her salvation, kissed her enchanted world away. In the fullness of time, her feelings will ebb…but the full moon never forgets.

Sinong Sosi?

I read a comment thread gone crazy on shopcrazy about Topshop's Preview fashion show collection. The girls were arguing which topshop location (and clients, needless to say) is more sosi like it's the most important topic in the world. Hello? We are living in a third world country!!! It's just so frustrating to know that well-off people (supposedly!) are kicking each other's asses off just to prove who is the most sosi of them all. People can really get so disgustingly self-absorbed.

Painting Black

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