Wednesday, October 31, 2012

How I Feel in Photos

After the spooky, comes the merry! Let me greet you Happy Holidays in advance. I hope you're surrounded by everyone you love. And I hope this holiday is everything you ever wanted it to be.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

These Scary Toys

It is called "Baby So Real". Some are cute but others are, well, sort of really creepy. I think this one belong to the Smithsonian under the evolution of man.

And she can represent a baby Java Man.

And remember this Kid’s TV show aired early part this year at Channel 2? Um, am I only the one who thinks that Wako wako looks like he has emerged from an alien movie? he and his friend look like they have become some sort of mutant furry animals akin to that Chewbacca of Star Wars. Hairy but not cuddly. At least not to me.

And as if Chuckie doll is not scary enough, they have included his spawn to this next toy. I must point out that Chuckie Jr makes a really creepy child's toy.

If you haven't seen the movie Rango, this next picture is Ms. Beans, the love interest of Johnny Depp--er, I mean Rango. Johny Depp just does the voice for Rango. Anyway, she's supposed to be a Desert Iguana.

However, with the wig and the eyes? I think they are two different things.

So parents, if you are going to go to the trouble to buy your children a gift, don't buy them one that they will later need therapy for.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Horror Movies Leaves me Late and Zombie-Like

Which is a prefect start for Halloween! I have never made it a secret that I am a giant baby and thus it should come as no shock that while I love Halloween I loathe being scared. But there are some people who don't necessarily like scary things but they like the adrenaline of being scared. That is me. There is nothing more likely to cause my bipolar side to come out, you know, hearing and seeing strange and ghost-like thingy in imagination, which I get after watching those horror flicks. And when I’m with company, it is either I clam up in one corner or my fist to his face when I am terrified. Really, I can be that pretty unpredictable when scared.

And just because TV people see this occasion as a way to make more money, they ride on the idea of scaring people around. I watched Rated K where the whole episode centered on paranormal activities, ghost hunting, psychic works and stories between the dead and the undead. I continued on watching about spirits, ghouls, and lumbering ghosts from one program to the next. I stayed until I-Witness which was around midnight already. They focused on the horrific The Film Center incident. They showed rescuing a dying man who was buried half body. He was gasping for breath but died later. I switched to the next channel and watched Sunday’s Best where they featured haunted places in Baguio, Sampaloc, and other horror hot spots all over the country. I finished watching at one am already . I thought I did an all-time high on who can change channel and pushing mute button the quickest to avoid all the scary parts.

Even if I get through the movies and TV programs with my brave big girl face on I am storing those images, those fears, and those characters in my brain and believe me when I say they come back to haunt me. I have this incredible imagination. Every poltergeist, white lady, headless priest, and even mananangal meets me when my head hits the pillow. Every sound, breeze, shadow, or branch on a window becomes a threat to my life and sleep never comes. And every time I close my eyes I swear I hear them breathing right down my neck. If I turn my back to the door they could sneak up on me but if I face the other way the window is in my blind spot. Yikes...I'll just sleep on my back--but then all my vital organs are exposed and vulnerable...sleep on my stomach and I'm defenseless. See where I am going here? You know the one I'm talking about...don't pretend that you don't.

So I came to work this morning half awake. I almost missed the train. Almost because I did come to work 30 minutes early so I was not really late. (I only thought adding the late word on the title is nice). But I don’t think of ghosts and spirits anymore, only because I realize that there are far more frightening and scarier things in life. Like knowing that your paycheck is not due today but on Wednesday.

Very scary.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

On Why You Should Buy Haunted Stuff

First, because they are more challenging. Challenging enough to leave everyone screaming while running out of the house. Who wouldn’t get excited of having the whole house to your self even for one day? Second, they are probably cheaper. You get them at a fraction of the original cost. You know, stigmatized properties are a bit difficult to liquidate, not because they have ghosts living in there, but because they don’t usually go well with plasma TVs. So they are usually for sale with big discounts. But far too many people give up on something just because it’s not easy. I personally believe that people should consider the advantages of spook-filled, bemoaning creepy, crawly stuff that turn to lumbering Zombies who want to eat your brain when you are not looking. Lets look at their benefits.

Haunted Beds

It is soft and inviting to curl up on, and has comfort you can rely on night after night. Adore the big head board carvings, accents and draperies and all the designs that looked kind like well, old, like something you see, well, in horror movies. In the deep of the night, prepare to feel a weird kind of pressure looming over you, and watch the edge of the bed depress like someone is sitting there. But take heart, buying them and getting rid of these beds every 6 months is worth the terror. Our 2- year old bed, soaked in pees, dusts and bug is not something you will like. I tell you that’s a very good deal.

Haunted Rocking Chairs

Not where U2, Black Sabbath or Aerosmith peeps rock and sit. I speak of a type of chair with two curved bands of wood attached to the bottom of the legs (one on the left two legs and one on the right two legs) and rock back and forth thus rocking chair (duh?). Wait till it rocks on its own. At first a very slow rock, then a little bit slower, then a little bit faster. But don’t run yet. Be glad about how much you can save using it instead of buying the costly Lazy Boy you see in posh furniture stores. It will lull you to sleep faster. Double the points if it is painted in pink. How cute!

Haunted Clocks, Refrigerators, Vacuum Cleaners, Mixers, etc.

They usually levitate, open and close and choked or pinned you to death. Your grandfather clock rings will terrify you enough to doom. Add the thrill if the grand piano plays on its own. But worry not, they are as priceless as they are good power saving devices. You can actually cut your electric bill in half as they are not plugged to any electrical outlet. And they usually come to life when you least expected it.

And last but not the least..

Haunted Houses

Well they are scary and make you feel like “you are not really alone”. Just wait a short time and everything inside your haunted house like your haunted beds, chairs, clocks and piano are sure to get thrown across the room. Expect to hear bemoaning spirits, appearing in and out in thin air. But they do have their own benefits. I don't know how much CCTV and other home security systems cost, but they can't be cheap. I'm sure that the system itself is expensive, but then the monthly monitoring fee is probably ridiculous, too. Just imagine how much money someone would save if they had a ghost to keep the burglars out.

There are actually many other benefits of owning a haunted house such as having cool disco lights. Look at what happened to Kris Aquino’s house in Fengh Shui (even the undead have the right to party, right?). You can also charge for tours around the house during the Halloween.

These are, actually, nice ideas.

Have a happy spooky Halloween, friends!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The New Math of Relationships

Ever wonder why we can't easily get to the bottom of life's happiness, success and all that abstract ideas until now? Only if there's a way to take all the complexities and confusions out of relationships and break everything from arguments to honeymoons and down into simple, mathematical equations-you know- a way to "quantify the world", we will all come up to something like these:

{Source via morenewmath}

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Just Thinking: How Do You Define Success?

Have you ever met people who seem so successful? They have good paying jobs, living in posh condominiums, even their dogs have some breed of sorts. Their lives are so put together, their polished nails and branded bags are blameless. It’s an interesting notion, isn’t it? Just imagine how many people we randomly encounter in any given day- on the street, in a restaurant, in the checkout counter at the groceries- and half the time we often wonder is this fate or what?

Not in a jealous way, but in why-others-are-abounding- why-others-are-not kind of way. Does fate intervene in our lives more than we even know? I'm not even sure I have my own answer. The practical side of me said that what you think is what is what you are. I won’t pretend to know the science of success, happiness and life’s contentment. But I’m sure each of you who has ever peeked at your friend’s car or seen his latest Iphone Galaxy note has your own back story.

In my book, it’s not about material things that make one person fortunate. Those things that you think are "so for adults" -- managing your finances, taking your career seriously, being reliable and dependable -- are signs good enough to tell that you are taking charge of your life. Remember: learn to be self-reliant. Have faith in God but do hard work to achieve great things. Sadly, many people are still clueless as why scarcity and lack seem to run after them. And why hard work, sweat and tears are not enough. May be it's our attitude not only with success, but on how we face the challenges we meet along the way.

Francis Kong, a very good motivational speaker has mapped out these 5 different personalities and traits associated with each type…
    1. Cop-outs. They set no goals and make no decisions.
    2. Hold-outs. They have a dream, but afraid of the challenges. They’ve lost their childlike faith.
    3. Drop-outs. When the going gets tough, they quit. They don’t pay the toll.
    4. All-outs. They set goals. They never quit. They keep on keeping on, even when the toll gets heavy. They’re dedicated. They’re committed.

But I do hold out hope, friends. I hold out hope that all of you find real things that will make you happy. And real courage to make your life better than it is today.

Monday, October 15, 2012

How I Feel In Photos

As a sleep-deprived new dad adjusting to life with daughter, I find these pictures completely funny but totally relatable. The images are of Dave Engledow and daughter Alice Bee. What started as a single photo, became a viral hit in Facebook. The pictures, all 56 of them, are planned to make into a calendar. The goal of the project has always been to create something that, although funny, also offers lessons to both parents and non-parents. Really, I have yet to see a new dad too excited to be left alone at the house with a baby. They would rather defuse bombs than change nappies.

These father and daughter portraits are exactly as amusing as they are sweet. What could be more charming than a baby with a lit match next to a pile of fireworks?

P.S. Sorry for guys who are more excellent as mothers than their female counterparts. I know its not flesh and blood but heart that makes a good parent.

Friday, October 12, 2012

How I Hold Myself Together

Female or male

30 years and above

No kids

Don’t get confused – this is not an ad for a job or a contest. These are actually risk factors for Breast Cancer. “Risk factor” means being prone or being a candidate for having an illness. Family history, early onset of menstruation and late menopause are also included.

My mother, a single parent, with 3 adult children, had it at 68. Whatever the cause, the outcome is clear: this evil monster gives us all unsettled lives since then. I look at her and she’s not getting younger. I wonder how her frail body bears her sickness every single day. It's been more than 3 years since she was diagnosed with it. The symptoms started out innocently enough -- a sudden pain here, a slight fever there. We thought simple allergies were the culprit. If only life -- if only anything, really -- could be that simple, right?

So what's behind all this cancer talk? Because mother never really tell us how she is taking it. And I never really processed my feelings about it until now. On that day. Over the phone. Barely a month after I gave birth to my youngest. With my sister breaking the sad news of her biopsy. It all got to me now. Looking back, I wonder if I ever tell her how I managed to hold back my tears at the hospital bed. Not too sure how I managed that, but I did.

As we get closer to the time of year when she got sick, I so wish she had trusted me enough to describe how it felt. To actually hear her say she’s not feeling well and something is not right. She all sucked the fear and terror, the dreadful thought of a growing lump in her right breast all to herself. May be that’s how single mothers are. They face their battles alone. I actually liked her hospital room at Bulacan Provincial. It was airy and clean, well lighted and spacious enough for us. But I did not like the smell. It smelled of death. As I watched her sleeping, I was slowly breaking into pieces. And I cried the instant I had the chance. It wasn't blubbering exactly, but truth be told, I could almost choked my self between sobs.

For all the times that she has it, never at any moment she blamed anyone, even God. Breast cancer is not her waterloo. It takes a more aggressive tumor to kill her strength. She was never on chemo and was never hospitalized again. I say, at 71, she is still the same offensive and stubborn mother we have all these years. And it is comforting to know that she, for whatever reason, didn't actually want to give up yet, that she will do everything in her power to stay with us as long as her health could.

Writing it makes me feel better. To actually believe that there's something else out there, that there's some sort of rhyme and reason why things such as sickness and death happen. Really, you can never be too happy in this life.

Here’s a song of Taylor SwiftRonan”. She wrote the song after reading Rockstar Ronan, owned by Maya Thompson, a US female blogger who describes her honest, raw and heartfelt experience about her four-year-old son's battle with cancer.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Probably My Most Meaningful Prayer Ever

Lying on my side, eyes closed but not asleep. Half of my body lying awkwardly outside the bed, and my sleeping daughter’s messy hair just above my own messy hair. There’s just the two of us. And the house, silent enough to hear my own thoughts. It occurred to me that this must be how God wants to talk sometimes. You will know its coming. You know that any moment there’s nothing more to do but face Him up. So I didn’t move a bit.

I had wanted it to be emotive and yes, slightly melodramatic as I usually do when I pray in front of people. But when I came down to it this morning, I didn’t feel like my words belong to me. That’s when I realized that my prayers are borrowed. All the fancy verbose I hear and read and copied from great writers, speakers and pastors, although astounding to the ears, but they are not from my own heart. It’s no wonder I don’t feel the power some days. And sadly there I realize that I can never float away for as light as my head feels, my heart is like a lead, keeping my words and my praises heavily chained.

And in that moment, I came to Him in this simple worship.

My Father in heaven, I worship and adore you with the kind of love and reverence my imperfect heart can love you. You own everything I have and I am in great awe of what you have done, been doing and will do for the rest of my life. I don’t deserve it but your blessings continue to pour in.

My loving Jesus, my Savior and Redeemer, I will bless your kindness and goodness to my family, my mother, and siblings. We are not the kind of people you will like 24/7 but in your unconditional heart, your love traverse all our shameful acts of selfishness, neglect and lack of commitment.

I come to you in deep desire to look upon my husband and children in their everyday errands. Thank you for giving them to me because they lend stability and genuine happiness to my life. Bless them with good health and life in all the days of their lives.

Although I didn’t want to go back to the day my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, but the life you’re giving her is more than enough I could be thankful for. You are bigger than any cancer cells. Stronger than any tumors that grow, enlarge or swell. May she continue to live comfortably, happily and strong for what is left of her senior years.

And I know it’s hard to raise kids alone, whilst husband working overseas, I rest in your unfailing mercy that you will bless my sister with peace of mind, strong arms and solid faith to get through chaotic days of raising stubborn teens. May you bless them and keep them in your sake.

My words are cheap and flawed. But my heart means it.

This is my prayer in the sweet name of Jesus. Amen.


In case you may not know this but October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Very quickly I'm going to give you the basic three things about breast cancer to be aware of: 1-a new lump or mass in the breast that you can feel. A lump that is painless, hard, and has uneven edges is more likely to be cancer. But sometimes cancers can be tender, soft, and rounded. So it's important to have anything unusual checked by your doctor. 2--Often, an abnormal area turns up on a mammogram, so have yourself tested. I know its horrifying to finally know you’re sick, but the earlier the better. There is help out there. 3--Your biopsy show you do have it. Now what? you got to know cancer specialists. If you developed a good relationship with these doctors, you may want to stick with them. But go ahead seek second opinions if you must.

But most of all, don’t forget that Jesus is our help. More potent than any Tamoxifen Citrate that you can get.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

In The Heat of the Moment

Let’s check out some funny quotes found on Twitter regarding the much talked about Anti-Cybercrime Law.

Again, I invoke my right against self-incrimination.

Cute Sommeecard eh?

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Let's Talk Anti-CyberCrime Law

As I’m sure most of you all know that the Anti-Cyber Crime Law is in full swing starting today. I usually don’t care about things unless if it will cost me my dear life. So if it is not about me, I could sit around all day and not have to worry about any thing. But in very, very brief terms, I'm going to tell you, my fellow bloggers, why you should be fight tooth and nail to get this act revised, modified, amended or repealed.

The full name of the law is the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012. As a normal citizen, I’m all about Copyrights. Claiming one’s material you do not own is next to theft and robbery. So hackers in a way, are close cousins of thieves and stealers. As bloggers, I know that we bust our heads to create the stories that we write and will unleash holy hell on anyone who steals them. And I also know that it’s difficult to think that with millions of file sharing sites there are, that we would actually “waste” money to buy, for example, a music album. Why do it if we can get it so easily? However shame on me if I tell the whole world I love Regine Velasquez but cannot shell out five hundred pesos to support her to make music that I love.

I am for one appreciates the backbone of the anti cyber-crime principles. They are up against:
  • child pornography
  • computer-related fraud
  • identity theft
  • computer-related forgery

The question is: Is the whole thing a good thing?

The Anti-Cybercrime Law may have been crafted with the best of intentions, but the final version of the bill poses nothing less than a most serious threat to our freedom of speech.

What it does is expand the coverage of libel.

Imagine a young man who has just turned 18. He is now legally an adult. In a fit of anger, he blasts his neighbor in his Facebook page, or in his Tweeter and calling that person all sorts of names. Under the anti-cybercrime law, he can be imprisoned and may not be released until his 30th birthday.

Ridiculous perhaps, but it’s the law.

I am speaking as a mother – one who is concerned not just for her children but for all the other young kids out there who spend so much of their free time on the internet and are unaware that they are covered by some repressive provisions of this law.

Let’s look at some possible scenarios:

    Scenario 1: An allegedly libelous status is posted on Facebook. Your child ‘likes’ the post. The offended party can claim that by ‘liking’, your child seconded or gave approval to the libelous post.
    Scenario 2: An allegedly libelous status is reposted/shared/retweeted by your child. That may be considered, under this law, to be republication or re-publishing, and your child can be held liable.
    Scenario 3: In an impulsive, angry moment, your child could post something online against a classmate or friend. The angry parents of the offended child cry ‘Libel’ and bring a case against your child. Your child is faced with possible jailtime.

What should be done instead?

Well, first of all, there are several other acts that are already in place to protect copywritten materials.

Art. 353 of the Revised Penal Code of the Philippines defines libel as follows: “a public and malicious imputation of a crime, or of a vice or defect, real or imaginary, or any act, omission, condition, status, or circumstance tending to cause the dishonor, discredit, or contempt of a natural or juridical person, or to blacken the memory of one who is dead”.

The thing with libel is that it isn’t whether what you said or wrote was true or not. Truth is NOT a defense. Something is libelous if MALICIOUS INTENT is shown. With all the slipups, defects, blunders our present law against libelous act, would we want to make our lives harder by adding the Anti-CyberCrime Law? This law is so loosely constructed that any person including any site with any kind of copywritten material on it could be shut down as a violation. And kids, in their lack of knowledge, can also be incriminated.

As one blogger said, the social media is so intertwined in our children’s lives but it can be misused and abused. But shouldn’t this be addressed differently? After all, if no one bothers to teach the youth proper social behavior online, how can we fault them for crossing the line from non-libelous to libelous?

As a mother of 8 year old boy who is active on Facebook, who clicks and likes and shares and plays anything that caught his attention, I can limit his use of computer. But he can always go to his cousins anytime and watch actual normal child birth via You Tube.

The thing is, we really can’t stop the changing times. And I believe that our children are this country’s future. And the way to make them future leaders is to shape and form them in body, mind and spirit and that includes their online lives. As parents, we should take conscious effort to help them realized that no one should be maligned, bullied, disrespected, stolen with, gossiped, or insulted in any manner. That they should always be responsible for their actions, with or without the Anti-CyberCrime law.