Thursday, June 28, 2007

If It's Green, Flush It

Jack Byrnes: "My Mother", by Jack Byrnes. You gave me life, / You gave me milk, / You gave me courage. / Your name was Angela, / An angel from Heaven, / But you were also an angel of God, / And he needed you, too. / I selfishly tried to hold on to you, / While the cancer ate away at your organs, / Like an unstoppable rebel force, / And now we'll meet in Heaven, / And I shall see you / Nevermore, nevermore, nevermore.

Pam Byrnes: Dad, that's beautiful.

Greg Focker: That's amazing, so much love, and also so much information.

* * *

I have read my share of really ugly poems. Trust me, there are very few things in the known universe more horrible than a really bad attempt at writing poetry; and nobody is more pathetic than someone who is harboring some sad delusion, in his heart of hearts, that he can actually write poetry. Or anything at all, for that matter.

(This eureka moment has somehow confirmed, in a really weird and sick way, that birds of the same feather really do flock together.)

* * *

The 70th season of the UAAP is set to kick off on July 7. Most of the games will be held at the NAS, which means that I will probably be watching most the games on TV. The theme is "Recreating the Values of Honesty Through Sports." I don't know about you, but that to me is a swipe, made with all the subtlety and finesse of Lintang Bedol, directed at idiots who are known to falsify public documents to win ball games.

Most of the games in the first round will be played on Sundays. Which is good, because, I am mostly unavailable on Saturdays. The game against the PEP Test Squad is scheduled to played at the Big Dome on Thursday, July 26.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Hi 165

"I do not mean to say that our liberty will be secured at the sword's point, for the sword plays but little part in modern affairs, but that we must secure it by making ourselves worthy of it, by exalting the intelligence and the dignity of the individual, by loving justice, right, and greatness, even to the extent of dying for them, -- and when a people reaches that height God will provide a weapon, the idols will be shattered, the tyranny will crumble like a house of cards and liberty will shine out like the first dawn.

"Our ills we owe to ourselves alone, so let us blame no one. If Spain should see that we were less complaisant with tyranny and more disposed to struggle and suffer for our rights, Spain would be the first to grant us liberty, because when the fruit of the womb reaches maturity woe unto the mother who would stifle it! So, while the Filipino people has not sufficient energy to proclaim, with head erect and bosom bared, its rights to social life, and to guarantee it with its sacrifices, with its own blood; while we see our countrymen in private life ashamed within themselves, hear the voice of conscience roar in rebellion and protest, yet in public life keep silence or even echo the words of him who abuses them in order to mock the abused; while we see them wrap themselves up in their egotism and with a forced smile praise the most iniquitous actions, begging with their eyes a portion of the booty -- why grant them liberty? With Spain or without Spain they would always be the same, and perhaps worse! Why independence, if the slaves of today will be the tyrants of tomorrow? And that they will be such is not to be doubted, for he who submits to tyranny loves it.

"Senor Simoun, when our people is unprepared, when it enters the fight through fraud and force, without a clear understanding of what it is doing, the wisest attempts will fail, and better that they do fail, since why commit the wife to the husband if he does not sufficiently love her, if he is not ready to die for her?"

- José Rizal, El Filibusterismo

Friday, June 15, 2007

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Travel Advisory

What better way to spend the weekend, and the last gasping moments of SCRA-free life, than to overexpose oneself to ultraviolet (UV) radiation at Puerto Galera. There, you can bask under the sun, enjoy the surf and the sand, eat, and maybe swim a little. Be carefree for a few precious hours.

We took the bus to the Batangas City Pier, where we will take a boat that will bring us directly to the White Beach. Once we arrived at Batangas Pier, we were welcomed by dozens of very boisterous locals, who incidentally, also happened to offer boat rides to Galera. Every fucking single one of them. They were all yapping at the same time, and were trying to outshout each other, making every single word they tried to say unintelligible. Well, except for the guy blocking the bus' only door, whose nostril was up my earlobe. You can almost swear they all had the boats up their asses.

It doesn't really change once you arrive at Galera. This time, they will be offering you places to stay. These people, for some unknown reason, cannot comprehend the word "No." (The armed forces should recruit these people.) They are a persistent and unrelenting lot. They are like the Energizer bunny, only less cute and a lot more annoying. In fairness though, the ones at Galera are the "gentler" kind. There is less screaming, but it is no less irritating.

We stayed at the aptly, and quite imaginatively, named "White Beach Hotel." It's not exactly Shangri-la, but they got cable TV, an A/C unit, and an electric fan. Once you turn on the A/C, you'd figure out what the fan is for. There is sufficient water pressure, and if you enjoy the smell of rust in your water, you'll love it there.

The scene at the beach is a virtual seaborne invasion, involving scores of tourists - like us - taking advantage of the three-day weekend, crossing the Verde Island Passage from Batangas to Mindoro. There are as many boats landing on the beach at any given time as there are hawkers back at Batangas. And they come every hour, most probably less. Since they have no other place to land but the beach, every single person on the water tries to stay alive by not becoming the iceberg to the M/B Commando 7's Titanic.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007


. . . is just another word for nothing left to lose.

- Janis Joplin

Salamat kay kelrudz sa pagpapakilala niya sa akin kay Janis Joplin sa pamamagitan ng kanyang sining.

Monday, June 04, 2007

I Know What You Did Last Summer

Technically, the break started last April 4. But, because of the uncanny ability of some people in our little corner in Diliman to bend time and space, in reality, it did not start until last Monday, when the last requirement was finally submitted. At least, I had the experience to tell me to enjoy it while it lasts, otherwise I would not have been able to get around finishing the following.

1. Watch the three threequels in movie theaters. In a span of a month, I was able to see Spiderman 3, Shrek 3, and Pirates of the Carribean 3, in theaters. That's three more than all the previous ten months combined. (I'm pathetic. Yes I know.)

2. Play as much NBA Live as I want.

3. Witness LeBron James in one of the best playoff performances of a basketball player since some guy named Michael Jordan. In a tight game 5 contest before a hostile crowd, James scored 29 of the Cavaliers' last 30 points, including its last 25, and all the Cavs' 18 points in the two overtimes to finish with 48 points. They won the game 109-107, and eventually finished the series at home in Game 6.

4. Finish the second season of Prison Break, and the first season of Heroes. Prison Break was a lot better when it was simply about breaking out of prison. But, yeah, Hiro is the Man.

5. Blog. A lot.

Unlike some of my more illustrious classmates, I did not get to dance onstage in my swimwear before thousands of screaming Mexicans. Though I sincerely doubt if anyone in his right mind would pay good money, or any amount of money, to see that.