Archive for April, 2011

Good Friday 2011

April 23, 2011 4 comments

Today is Good Friday. The family and I went to Sta. Mesa for the Prusisyon ng Santo Entierro, translated as Procession of the Holy Burial. Basically, it is a funeral procession where devotees carry the image of the deceased Christ. We woke up a bit late today but we still managed to make it in time for the event.

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Image of the Deceased Christ

The image of the deceased Christ

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Before the procession started, I took the liberty of taking photos of the other holy images that were included in the march.

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It took us exactly three hours to complete the route which started and ended at our parish, Our Lady of Fatima Parish Church. It’s been a while since I joined a procession and it was a very nostalgic experience for me. I used to serve the church as an altar boy.

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The Altar of Our Lady of Fatima Parish Church

The altar of Our Lady of Fatima Parish Church

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After the long trek along the streets of Bacood, the people were asked to line up for the Pahalik sa Señor. The devotees venerate Christ by kissing his wounded hand. Once we had our turn, Ava and I decided to go home since it was already getting late and we still have a long drive home.

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Pahalik sa Señor

Believe it or not, this is what lining up means. I think we’re allergic to it.

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The celebration of the Holy Week is a very important event in a country where most people are born and raised as Catholics. I studied in Catholic schools all my life. I was taught that this was a time for reflection since this was the most significant element of our religion since Christ’s death and resurrection assures us of our own salvation.

On our way home, I realized that we don’t have to be Catholic or Christian to be able to reflect on the state of the intangible aspect of our being. Though I am Catholic, I believe we can never say that there is one true religion. However, I believe that there is one true God, the Creator of this universe and our limited perception of the nature of this entity as well as the cultural diversity of our race is the reason why there are so many versions of religion around. I prefer to think that two thousand years ago, a carpenter walked on the face of this earth and gave us an excellent idea on how life should be lived.

“He [God] still digs humanity, but it bothers Him to see the shit that gets carried out in His name – wars, bigotry, televangelism. But especially the factioning of all religions. He said humanity took a good idea and like always, built a belief structure on it. I think it’s better to have ideas. You can change an idea. Changing a belief is trickier. Life should be malleable and progressive; working from idea to idea permits that. Beliefs anchor you to certain points and limit growth; new ideas can’t generate. Life becomes stagnant.” ~ Rufus the 13th Apostle, Dogma


Happy Birthday, Shopping Queen!

April 21, 2011 2 comments

Happy Birthday, Bie! Today is your special day and I wish you a great and fun day despite the fact that today is Maundy Thursday. Don’t worry, if it doesn’t work out, we’ll party on Easter!

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With My Shopping Queen

Me and my Shopping Queen, Ava

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I believe in the things that you do and I know that you have it in you to be someone great in this world. As long as you remain true to what you want and never fail to lose faith in what you can do, then anything is within reach for you. Never let this world get you down.

I wish you happiness and love as you start another year full of opportunities to unleash your thoughts and talents. May you meet more great people who will help you and be with you as you continue to pursue to live your dream as an artist. Most importantly, may your relationship with God, your family and friends continue to grow with all the special moments that you will share with them.

Athan and I will always be proud of you and your achievements. Always remember, we’re always here for you. I love you very much!

Craving For A Final Fantasy

April 19, 2011 Leave a comment

I really can’t wait to get my hands on this! Epic!

Le Ching, Greenhills ‘Yan!

April 17, 2011 6 comments

Went out with the family today. We spent the afternoon at Greenhills Shopping Center since we haven’t been there for quite some time. I really love going there even though a lot has changed over the years.

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… except EDSA’s traffic!

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I practically grew up in Virramall and Shoppesville. Since I was just a kid, Dad and Ma always took me and my sisters there to dine and shop. Ate Maine and Ate Dior both studied at O.B. Montessori when they were in grade school. I remember tagging along with Ma everytime she fetches them. She would hang out with her friends, who were also the mom’s of my sisters’ schoolmates. I think I was just four or five then. I know. I’m getting a bit nostalgic here. Anyway, being at Greenhills is a family tradition for us and I want to share that with Ava and Athan.

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El Driver

Ava a.k.a. El Driver

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El Tambay

Athan a.k.a El Hilata!

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We ate at Le Ching Tea House (One), a Chinese restaurant located at Shoppesville. They serve excellent Chinese food at affordable prices. Here’s a list of what we had:

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Spare Ribs Rice
Php 122.00
Coke (in can)
Php 42.00
Ravioli Noodle Soup
Php 128.00
Coke (in can)
Php 42.00
Chicken Noodle Soup
Php 128.00
Sprite (in can)
Php 42.00
Php 504.00

The Bill

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Spare Ribs Rice

Spare Ribs Rice

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Ravioli Noodle Soup and Chicken Noodle Soup

Top: Ravioli Noodle Soup, Bottom: Chicken Noodle Soup

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Not bad for three people. They also renovated the place a bit. It now appears to be brighter and cozier than before.

Le Ching's newly renovated ceiling. Bright lights!

Le Ching’s newly renovated ceiling. It would have been cooler if it had a pentagram!

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We then went around the bazaars since Ava wanted to do a little window shopping. She’s very into satchel bags these days and she wanted to see the one’s that were on display there. She found one which tickled her fancy: a brown satchel. However, she opted not to buy it since she wanted to practice a little self-control. Proud of her, I am! Done with bag-hunting, we went back to Shoppesville to buy Athan’s milk and nappy at Mercury Drug, which surprisingly remains untouched.

I kinda prefer how Virramall was back in the day and I sometimes wish the owners conserved a bit of the old feel instead of discarding everything that made it the Virramall the kids of my generation loved. I have no qualms with the revamped look. I guess it just stings to see the material remains of the special moments of your life get torn down and replaced with a very commercial shopping district. Now, they’re starting to work on Shoppesville.



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Overall, it was a great and fun day. Though I’m a sentimental person who clings too much to the past, I still think Greenhill’s development is an excellent business move. For me, it still is one of the best places to dine and shop with the family.

If change is inevitable, then progress is possible.

New Material!

April 15, 2011 Leave a comment

While I was on my way to work, inspiration suddenly hit me and I thought of some lines, which I think I could turn into songs as soon as I get to my guitar. This seldom happens to me, since most of the time, I only come up with something if I’m strumming and doing some progressions as I think of what the song is going to be about. Hopefully, they turn into something decent. Here goes:

Tell me, are we free
Or are we living in somebody’s fantasy
Maybe it’s not just me
Who knows what the world’s got to be
Look around, don’t stare at the ground
Seeing’s part of the new philosophy
Maybe we can turn the world around
And free it from all the clowns
Wait, they say it’s fate
That shapes the face of our society
Maybe it’s not that profound
It just depends on you and me
Hey, it’s never too late
To make the needed change a reality
I’m longing to get to see
The world that’s meant to be
Sumisikat ang liwanag
Na kumakalat sa lupang bulag
Lantad ang kulay ng hinagpis
Sa mga matang nakatitig sa dilim
Tumutunog ang himig
Na nilimot ng mga pipi at bingi
Bigkas ang mga mahalagang salita
Sa mga tenga’t labing pinilit manahimik
Sa ano mang paraan
Sa ano mang dahilan
Kailan ma’y hindi mananaig
Ang kasinungalingan sa katotohanan

It’s depressing to listen or watch the news, be it on radio or television but for some reason, I’ve been exposing myself to it recently. I guess the negative vibes just rubbed in and I realize this is how bad I want to see some change happen in this country. Things are getting more and more ridiculous and unreasonable every day: natural disasters, price hikes, political turmoil, corruption. When will all this shit end? We spend everyday working our asses off and this is what we get from all the taxes we pay. Woosah.

Anyway, I can’t wait to get my hands on my guitar and put some melody and rhythm to them words especially on the first one. I’m still new to writing songs in English. Every song we have in Manaha is in Filipino and I think that’s a good thing. I believe writing them in our language makes the delivery of their messages sound more sincere.

I really want our country to change for the better. It’s the only one we have and the only one we can truly call our own. Too bad that most of us and maybe the best of us have forgotten that.

To end this post/rant, I’ll leave you with something I’ve been pondering for the past weeks. To those who read my online journal, I wish you a happy weekend!

Change happens only if we accept the fact that we are a crucial part of it.

Public Service 101

April 7, 2011 2 comments

Lately, I’ve been spending a portion of my mornings listening to Senator Dick Gordon and Ms. Cheryl Cosim’s radio program, Akson Solusyon, which airs from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. daily at Radyo Singko 92.3 FM. The show has a public service format which aims to provide helpful solutions to the woes that trouble common folk. The hosts present complaints brought to their attention then they hear the thoughts of the parties involved, which eventually leads to a fair conclusion as both sides compromise. Aside from that, they also disseminate important information regarding public heath and welfare.

Yesterday, Sen. Gordon briefly talked about patriotism. I was still hungover with my previous post and I sent a message to their text hotline. It read:

“Good morning, Sen. Gordon and Ms. Cheryl. I heard you briefly discuss the love we should have for our country. I believe most of us have lost this sentiment and are driven to a state of indifference and inaction. It’s important to regain this sense of affection for our nation since it’s the spark that will give birth to the concern which eventually will turn into actions that will start the change our country needs.”

It was the first time I did something like that and surprisingly, Ms. Cheryl read my message. It really felt great to hear my thoughts on air. Sen. Gordon even agreed to my point and reiterated how important it is to have that love and concern to make good things possible for our country. What made my day was they both got my name right! Most people pronounce it as ‘Jersh’. Can’t blame them though. Think Germany.

I voted for the good senator during the last presidential elections. I think he is currently one of the most promising figures in our country along with Vice President Jejomar Binay, who is manning up his post pretty well. Though he lost the election, he has remained visible in the public eye through his current advocacies. We really need more leaders who share his vision and desire to shape the Philippines into a more stable and competitive nation.

Stuck In A Rut

April 5, 2011 Leave a comment

Last weekend, I had an interesting conversation with an old friend, Rochester Uy. He was one of my best buds from college. He was the type who you can talk to about anything without having to shy away from an awkward topic. Some people can really take the bullshit and I admire them for that. We shared our insights regarding pressing issues in our society: global warming, the irresponsible elite and corruption in our country. Talking to him made me accept the fact that we are indeed getting old and the world around us is not getting any nicer.

There were some points where we failed to see eye-to-eye, but there were instances when our perception of how things are complemented each other. Though neither of us mentioned it, we both knew that at the rate of how the quality of life in our country is diminishing, we are all FUBAR. It’s depressing to think that a country with great potential is forced to remain in a state of disarray since the attitude of its people prevents it from achieving true progress

Our country is in shambles because we have lost our love for it. I think that is the simplest explanation why we are stuck in this rut.

In almost every relationship we engage ourselves in, there exists a certain degree of love which dictates how much we can give to the one who’s at the receiving end of our affection. Our goal is to make that entity be in a state of wellness, which in turn, gives us a sense of fulfillment. This amount of love is inversely proportional with our reward expectancy for the efforts we exerted. Simply put, if we love someone or something greatly, then we expect almost nothing in return for the services we have given. Otherwise, we expect a great deal of compensation for all the time and resources we have exhausted. When it comes to our country, we have lost this honorable affection that allows one to go beyond the line of duty without having to consider the cost and consequence of standing up for the sake of our nation.

I don’t know if the last paragraph made any sense. All I’m saying is, the only way we can save our country and ourselves from going to the dogs is to learn how to truly be in love with it again. It all starts when we begin reflecting on the miserable state we are in and how we can turn it into a more suitable scenario. As long as we have that concern, there is still hope for this land and its people.

Sorry for the rant. I’m a parent so I guess I’m entitled to have these thoughts. I just want the best for Athan especially when he grows up. I want him to be able to walk the streets without the worry of being somebody’s prey. I want him to be able to fulfill his dream without being constricted by the ridiculous setbacks in our society.

They say our future lies in the hands of our children. That may be true. I prefer to think that it greatly depends on how we and others belonging to our generation will shape our present condition. I believe that our country is plagued by a lethal outbreak which forces its people into indifference and inaction. Our love for it is the only potent remedy capable of healing it from this meaningless disease.