Saturday, May 28, 2011

My Obsession with Lies

This can be handy
I've been kept busy by this series I'm following right now. It's Lie to Me, starring Tim Roth. His role is a scientist specializing in the study of lies. Yes, lies. Lies which shows unconsciously on microexpressions of the face. His company assists FBI and other legal teams on verifying suspects' guilt or innocence. 

I'm currently doing a marathon of its first season. I have copies until season 3. I got hooked! This show's actually enabling my cynicism and paranoia. It makes me wanna observe people more *insert evil laugh*. Oh, is that bad? But hey, really, I hope I get to learn a thing or two from this. Wouldn't it be so cool to be an actual human lie detector?

Friday, May 27, 2011

Baguio Lovin'

Forgive the photo quality, I'm trying to make a point. This is the rainiest Baguio photo I had.
It was announced that the summer is officially over this exact day. It was cut short by a typhoon, thus, shifting the season into a rainy one. Why am I, all of a sudden, interested on weather reports? Because of all the gloom around me! I hate the rain, it turns me into this nostalgic little fool. It makes me crave for things, people and places!

I miss Baguio. I always... always... think about it every rainy season. Why?

Circa 2007. I lived there for quite some time, 6 months to be exact. It wasn't for a summer vacation, but a time to review for board exams. It was rainy season the whole time I've been there. My boyfriend and I stayed on a cute little apartment (it was more like a room), on a quiet little village distant from the city proper. It was one of the highlights of my life so far. I experienced buying our everyday food from the talipapa. I learned how to cook. I learned how to fit expenses into our tiny budget. There was also this time when my bestest friends came over to celebrate my (and Dian's) birthday. That's the picture above. We had to sneak them into one of the apartment's room so that we can avoid paying for it! LOL. We spent the night drinking, eating and laughing. That's one of my memorable birthdays. And now I suddenly missed them.

November 2007. I went to PRC Baguio to check my board exams result and see its breakdown of scores. I met my boyfriend afterwards. I was about to go home that same day. Of course I didn't want to yet. It so happened that it was drizzling. It was a harmless drizzle, a far shot from an actual rain but called my mother anyway and told her it was raining cats and dogs. That travelling would be too risky. She let me stay there for the night. What I did was bad, but I thought I deserved a little white lie considering I gave them some good news with the exam's result.

Panagbenga 2008. I went there to visit my boyfriend who was still working there. The night before the main parade, we went out and got caught by the rain. I got an instant fever and never got the chance to watch the whole thing the next day. Could have been a total bummer, but I enjoyed the warm blankets too!

November 2008. Another lovelife visit. Lol. Guess what, it rained again.

August 2010. My boyfriend and I went there to celebrate our anniversary. It rained so hard for two days. Again, we got caught when we were about to go home, yet another instant fever for me! He even had to buy me a blanket to keep me warm in the bus because we were soaking wet! That blanket instantly became my favorite, I named it and used it everyday - even until now.

March 2011. After our Sagada adventure, we took the Baguio route on our way home. It was sunny the moment we left Sagada but drizzling in Baguio. Weird.

See the correlation? I was never there for the summer. It was all rain. That's how I knew Baguio. That's why I miss it now. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Food Quest: Buckaroo's Grilled Pizza and Burger

This is a segment where my boyfriend gets to review restaurants/burger joints for his quest of the best burger in the whole world. He has a unique take on burgers with some I don't find agreeable. But as a part of this blog, we will document every burger we eat until he gets to say he found it - the best burger ever.

We already had other burgers in the past. Let me just enumerate his ratings in a nutshell.

Brother's Black Angus Burger ------- 7/10
Big Brother's Burger ------------------- 7/10
Brother's Lamb Burger ----------------- 6/10
Friday's Jack Daniels Burger ---------- 5.5/10 (totally unbelievable! I would have given this a 10 without thinking)
Big City Burger -------------------------- 4/10 (i agree, lol!)
Kenny Rogers 9/10 ---------------------- 8.5/10
Mcdonald's cheeseburger -------------- 7/10

This quest took us to Buckaroo's Grilled Pizza and Burger Restaurant. It is a quite new establishment, located at SM Clark's Meeting Place. If you do not intend to eat there, I have 8 words for you "". I did! It was just a fraction of a second and then boom, a kind-looking staff approached me and just stammered the whole content of their menu. He managed to recite the whole thing while looking down as if he's talking to the menu itself. It was so awkward I knew I just have to give in. I decided to eat there just to put him out of his misery. Don't get me wrong, I was not irritated at all. I think it was pity. Really! I thought maybe he has some required quota of customers or something. 

I did not regret giving in to this particular staff because he, later on, was uber attentive with our every needs. There was some point when I thought I saw him literally ran just to put a hot sauce on our table because he noticed we were looking for some. He ran! 

Moving on. So, where were we? Oh the food! 

First stop, the Buckeroo's Red Iced Tea. My boyfriend is very particular with his iced teas. He just loves them. To hell with the tea's color or origin, but tea for him has just 2 classifications - brewed and instant. 

The verdict? INSTANT. 
Score? 2/10

Taco, Php 165.00
Next stop is the Taco. It was surprisingly huge! Let me just do a quick verdict on this one. Price is 9/10 (mad cheap considering its size) and Taste is 7/10. I hate the fact that they used red onions and honey mustard. It was just not right to my taste buds. It won't even go well with Tabasco because of its weird sweetness. Also, the meat has no spices at all, it was just browned. They could have used a little help from McCormick. 

Buckaroo Burger (I forgot its real name), Php 165.00
First thing's first - the bun. The bun was dry, nothing really special, typical buns you can buy at any sari-sari stores. The patty, well hahah, according to him, was a like a huge cdo ulam burger! Though I thought was just a bit of an exaggeration, but I got the point. The veggies... the veggies ain't complete without their leader, the heart and soul of burgers - pickles! It has no pickle. The sauce was A1. The price was just okay, since it did not come with siders. Overall score for the burger was 6/10. Not that bad.

Fried Marshmallow
I was no fan of sweets but I had to order this out of curiosity. It was fried marshmallow! It was fine though. Nothing to rave about, but it was fine.

The Ambiance. Loved the Cowboy feel.
So the final verdict? 

It's a MUST TRY... once.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Sharpening the Saw

Popularized by Steven Covey, "Sharpening the Saw" is about a habit of self-renewal. This is an analogy of a woodcutter who is sawing for several days straight and is becoming less and less productive. The process of cutting dulls the blade. So the solution is to periodically sharpen the saw. By sharpening, not only he maintains the quality of the blade, but also gives himself time to rest and regain strength. 

How can I relate into that? Hmmm.. Let's see.

Covey's Analogy
Activity: Sawing woods
Tool: Saw
Solution: Sharpen

My analogy
Activity: Resting (yes, that is my daily activity)
Tool: Brain (or should I say mind?)
Solution: Sharpen

How? How do I prevent my little brain from dulling, without actually frying it? 

I just realized, I am actually sharpening my mind all along. Great! I don't have to go back to employment acting like Patrick the Star. Several activities kept me busy, kept me sane and kept my brain intact. 

First, I improved my Adobe Photoshop skills. And when I say improved, I really mean it. I can only enhance photographs before, now I can trace and draw. Yay! I also made some profit out of it. I design shirts and sell them online. Not bad for a hobby to kill time. 

Drawn from scratch, used 3 layers. It's a DOTA item if you're wondering.

I also wrote technical reports online. Yes, I've made homeworks and projects for lazy foreign people and earned from it as well. This fried my brain a bit but it's all worth it.
Blameless Amplifier - hardest one so far.

I'm about to finish Anne Rice's fourth installment of the Vampire Chronicles, Tale of the Body Thief. Again, genius work from her. But this book took me some months finishing it. The first half was quite a bore. I dragged myself for months to actually reach the exciting part. But hey, once I reached it, I was unstoppable! Her characters are never ideal but I love how she makes them all seem perfect.
All worn out from months of abuse.

I'm also about to finish Portal 2. It's easier than Portal 1, though it's obviously longer. It's equally fun and mind-boggling too. I played this game because of a dare. My brother promised to treat me to Italiannis if I were able to finish both 1 and 2, turns out I enjoyed the game more than he did! Yay!
My brain lost a thousand calories from working out through this game.
So yes, my brain is still working. Glad to know that. How can I test if my bitchiness is still working?

Saturday, May 7, 2011


Life gave me lemons once again. I already have so many lemons, I don't exactly know what to do about them anymore.

Last December, I lost my phone and my only pair of gold earrings. Before the month ended, I lost my business. January, I lost the job I wanted. Today, I just realized, I lost my personal ATM card.


I do not actually recall how or when but as I checked earlier, it's just not in my purse. The last time I used it was February. I needed to use it earlier, but it was just not there. I doubted the option of misplacing it in my other bags because I never take it out from my purse. I checked online and I was so horrified with what I saw.

It was emptied. Judging from the transactions made, I already lost the card since April. It was so unlikely, my grievance over a lost belonging was a month late!

So now, I am officially depleted to the last drop. I still have some on my PayPal account, but those are for travel and other future things, so those are negligible. Me and my boyfriend are planning to open a joint account now, well at least some good news for me. That is a milestone. Us, officially saving for our wedding, but I think we'll have a passbook this time.

Hmmm.. so lemons.. what can I do about these lemons. Lemonade, anyone?

Pizza Date

Every month, we make an excuse to indulge a little. It somehow happens on days near 27th. 27 is our monthsary, cheesy I know. We've been together for almost 6 years now and we're still celebrating it (except for the days we unintentionally forget about it). Last April 28, we went for a pizza-themed date. 

He went out from work at 5pm, we met afterwards. After an hour of non-stop walking and fake shopping (we picked clothes, decided to come back after dinner, then totally forgot about them), he suddenly felt hungry, as in sudden can't-walk-any-longer kind of hungry. We both agreed to eat at Yellow Cab, after all, it is our favorite pizza place. 

I think it was the hunger, for as we waited for our food to be served, he suddenly turned oh so cheesy! Kidding! He's always sweet, hungry or not, LOL. So sweet that he gave me this line:

"Sometimes, I have to treat my life". 
Attempting to correct his grammar, I said "You mean "I have to treat myself, not life"" 
Answering back, he said "I mean exactly what I said." "MY LIFE" then he pointed at me. 

I melted. 

The photo is not mine by the way. I was so hungry that I did not give a damn capturing it. 

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Interview

It was July 2009. I was being interviewed for a job position. It was fast-paced - a written exam, interview, yet another interview, actual exam and then start after two days.

That was the last job interview I had until the next story. I kept that job for just 3 months.

Fast forward to April 26, 2011. I was in Makati for a  job interview. Recap: I was suffering from a hangover the day before when the company informed me the scheduled interview. I had no time to prepare whatsoever. My real problem was how to reach the building without getting lost. I am so damn clueless when it comes to NCR. I had to force my bf to file a leave just to accompany me. It took us an hour just to wait for the right bus to arrive in the terminal. I even saw my highschool crush, he looks old now though (totally irrelevant, i know). So there, just in the nick of time, we reached the venue.

I fell in line to be called. Technically, we were sitting on some comfy chairs. My bf  left me and killed time strolling around Greenbelt. There I was, surrounded by zealous fresh graduates as my competition. I eavesdropped on some interviewees' answers. I was like "Whoooaaa? Do you really have memorize that line?"

I remembered my interviews from the past. That's when it came clear to me. Yes, we really have to do that as fresh grads. We really had to oversell ourselves, enhance truths and never bargain. So now what? Do I have to act oh-so-interested and beat the hell out of those fresh grads?

As we all waited, some of them already became friends. Me? Being the big snob that I am, just sat there in the corner, eavesdropping. They were so enthusiastic and friendly! They were even practicing how to answer usual interview questions. They were so updated that they knew all the hiring companies, which university topped the board exams and which review center did the topnotcher go to. It was like surrounded by people of a secret society. I felt so out of place. Before I got so annoyed, I realized that there was absolutely nothing wrong with them. I was exactly like them 4 years ago. I have been out of the loop for quite some time now that I totally forgot what it was like to be young again. To strive doubly hard just to prove something to yourself.

I got so absorbed by my own issues that I did not recognize the time. It was past lunch time. There was only one HR lady assigned to our position. I think she got so hungry and just called three of us to be interviewed all at the same time. I believe that was not fair but that was her prerogative. I witnessed how one of us, an experienced engineer, owned our asses. She totally dominated the whole interview. I answered just satisfactorily while the other girl almost cried out of nervousness. How the hell did that happen? I knew how fierce I am when it comes to interviews. But I sat there like a lost puppy, totally starstruck by my co-interviewee. I acted so uninterested when I knew that company was to die for!

Then I realized, interview skill can really get rusty, even for the most spontaneous conversationalists. Now do I have to expect to receive another call, for a technical interview perhaps? It wouldn't hurt. Let's just see where this will lead me.