Friday, November 26, 2004

Blonde and innocent

I remember when I was in high school and there was this joke I just didn't get until I was well into college. You meet someone who's a college student and you ask him (always a he) "What's your course?" and he replies, "Inter," with this silly smile on his face.

And I'd usually go, "Huh? Ano yun?"

Thursday, November 25, 2004


I went to a reunion recently. I mentioned a few posts ago that I spent a significant part of my childhood in a sandbox. I'm extending childhood into early adolescence, mind you.

Adolescence almost always involves awkward moments with crushes. I was twelve when I saw a pair of sparkling eyes that rendered me speechless and immobile for a full five seconds. Speechless and immobile. Can you imagine what was going through my head during those five seconds? I heard angels singing, the wall behind him turned into clouds and a brilliant light showered his fine features. (I know. Our Lady of Guadalupe.)

Anyway, this guy was my first serious crush. There was no unique friendship to speak of, just a really serious crush that consumed me well into high school. And it's not like I saw him everyday. I saw him exactly twice after that, before i turned 14.

Fast forward from the party to sixteen years later, to the big reunion. I put on makeup, my Samantha Jones outfit, and memorized my I-invented-post-its lines. My mantra that night was, don't faint, don't faint, don't trip, don't trip.

And there he was, just as I remembered him. He hasn't changed. Not one bit. Not even his height. I know I grew maybe five or six inches since we last saw each other. He didn't.

And you know what else? He totally ignored me. Dead-ma.

So there, I ended up ignoring him as well, not without (drunken) comments to my small circle of friends about his height.

The reunion may not have turned out as I planned it to (read: the guy flirting with me and a quick romp at the back seat of his car) but hell, it was even better. I was fully made up, in my Samantha Jones outfit, impressing old friends with my I-invented-post-its lines, guzzling beer after beer and reminiscing old times, when we were all young, awkward, and momentarily speechless and immobile.

Mad Max - ten points!

I'm re-posting this blog I did a few months ago. I just find it really amusing, and yes, I don't have anything more amusing to post. The situations which have been leaving me with sleepless empty-sex drive nights aren't particularly interesting.

So here's a short stroll down memory lane:

On our way back from church yesterday, we ran over a drunk. And we realized that the human spirit will always be stronger than the force of an SUV going 25 kph.

I'm telling you, it was frightening at first. But the ass proved to be more annoying than anything, I'd have run him over in reverse had I known.

It was late afternoon and the sun hadn't even set yet. It was a crowded street (not a pleasant neighborhood, really) and we noticed this man laughing and pointing at people and walking as if his legs were made of jell-o. Then he walked right onto our bullbar.

The sound of the impact was weird. It sounded like BLOG.

Anyway, so there he was, sprawled on the street. Bystanders and tricycle drivers ran to the scene. In the commotion, there was only one common thing they were saying: The guy was drunk, loud, picking fights with everyone, and that it wasn't our fault, good for him.

His companion (almost as drunk, Jesus!) had to be prodded to pick him up and to go with us to the nearest hospital. As we drove hurriedly to the hospital, the guy we drove over came to his senses, and wow, he started talking about love, religion, Ilocanos, etc., etc. Didn't say or ask anything about the blood dripping from his head. And his companion? Just as coherent.

Both guys proved to be a real nuisance in the emergency room. Not a danger, really, just a nuisance, since they behaved, well, drunk. They didn't even want to be examined. The doctor, fed up, advised us to just let them go without the usual medico-legal x-rays and examinations. "They're fine, believe me," the doctor insisted. "Just have them sign an agreement relieving you of further responsibility."

So they did, and we gave them 300 bucks to buy painkillers and to go home.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

elementary school

I'll be sending my kid off to Kindergarten next year. If I only had my way, I'd have her stick it out with a small, non-traditional school and have her start first grade in a "big" school. But circumstances (and practicality) dictate that I get her into a big school as early as Kindergarten.

So I had my choices whittled down to three, the names of which I will not disclose. (I don't want to run the risk of vicious comments over which schools have the skankiest girls, dumbest girls, etc.) School A, School B, and School C.

School A is my top choice. It is, in every sense, a Chinese school. Kids from this school excelled in college, at least during my time. I admired them so much because they (usually) were very masipag and, for lack of a better term, unaffected.

School B has a nasty rep for being sosyal . But I've heard enough good things about their fine graduates to at least try to secure an application form from them.

That leaves School C. I went to School C. From Kinder to the first quarter of fifth grade, when my dad relocated us to the big sandbox (Saudi Arabia). I must say School C has excellent facilities and inspiring teachers. But School C was my last choice.

Why? there were mean. There were the cliques, the teachers' pets, the rich kids (who were always part of the cliques and who were usually teachers' pets), and then there were kids like me who didn't have Cabbage Patch dolls who'd always get picked on. Who would want their daughter to experience such, right?

I almost started to hyperventilate when memories of School C flooded back. The shrink in me took over and calmed me down. Then I thought, what schools aren't? What schools don't have cliques and teachers' pets and rich kids and kids whose parents weren't into buying butt-ugly dolls? What schools don't have bullies and nerds? What schools don't have artists and math whizzes?

And you know what? School C accepted my daughter. School A waitlisted her (I suspect it's because she doesn't know how to speak Chinese) and School B hasn't even started processing applications yet. We're sending her to my school.

And no, I'm not worried about her going through the same things I did. Well, not as much, anyway. I know she'll be smarter and stronger than I was, that she'll be able to transcend the cliques and teachers' pets and butt-ugly dolls.

Monday, November 22, 2004


I feel sorry for one of my friends. He just got axed from his job. What makes it worse is that it's his birthday tomorrow.

A super-salesman in an IT firm, he joined the company a little over two months ago. Last week a new VP for marketing came in. Even with no background in IT (her previous stints were in banking and shipping operations), her very close friend (the company owner) hired her. On her first week, she decided she didn't like my friend and axed him, after which she pulled in two people from the bank where she used to work.

My friend, whose status was on probation, couldn't do anything.

I really feel sorry for him. And to think I owe him 500 bucks.

Friday, November 19, 2004

grateful applicant

One of the rewards of being a terror interviewer is in the satisfaction of knowing that you made a difference in someone's life. Or at the very least, left such an unforgettable impression.

I got an email a few days ago from one of our applicants. She graduated magna cum laude, majored in accounting. Her transcript was glowing with A's. The interview, though, was disappointing. But here's the email:


You've recently interviewed me last November 3. I know I did not do well in the interview. You may already have had the position filled. Anyway, that's not the point why I emailed you. I emailed you because I wanted to thank you for pointing out the things I did not generally think of until I had the talk with you. Over the past few days, I've been looking for the answers for the questions you asked of me. It's been really enlightening. For instance, I now know why "Cash is King" (I even found a whole article on this.) I now can relate to the issue regarding SSS and Equitable PCI shares. I now can tell you that it was a "fiscal" crisis Pres. Arroyo was talking about and that she gave a statement about it being over (despite the budget deficit and the all-time high inflation of 7%).

Again, thank you. You've changed how I looked at finance. It some ways, it has helped me. I now regularly read BusinessWorld and study finance in a different light. It's another world but it's been fascinating."