Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Ticking Time Bomb


Woke up this morning and it was raining. It was just the right strength for me to decide to sleep again. On a work day.

Finally I got up. Still relatively early but had enough sleep to feel quite fine. Had a nice breakfast of cold rice and boiled, canned vienna sausage. While channel surfing.

Took a nice hot bath. That woke me up even more. Despite the fact that the rain was falling I was feeling calm and happy. Strange. Normally the rains bring me to a sort of quiet angst. Or maybe I was just too damn relaxed to bother worrying about all the useless crap I worry about.


Took the car to work today. It's going to be a long work day. I was supposed to go back to working on the game we were doing (which I am advertising right at the bottom of this page) because the project I was doing was almost done. I say almost because it still hasn't received final approval. But its getting there. Don't wanna jinx it. Knock on wood and all that brouhaha.

I encountered typical Filipino drivers. Swerve here, cut there. Defend all lanes so no one overtakes. Right. And yet I didn't get pissed at them (my, my I'm so calm all of a sudden). Just went my merry way to work. No hassles.

Even in the muddy parking lot. I usually park in the "idiot area", which I called that way because most of the people who park there just park anywhere. Our parking lot is an empty lot with security guards. All free, of course. The section of the parking closest to our building has organized lanes where cars park. As it goes further away less clearer lines of cars are seen. Sure it's an empty lot with no painted lanes but c'mon, use your friggin' heads once in a while. If they can do it in the front area why not the back?

Fortunately I park WAY back. So no one can block my car. I'm at the edge nearest the sidewalk. Haha. Who cares if its a long walk? That's why I've got legs with feet. To walk.

Anyway I'm waiting for my officemate to arrive so I can start working on the new project. It's going to be a bit rush-rush so I'll probably be working late here. But I'm ready. I don't know why, but I'm ready.


Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Down Time at the Office

Today was a relatively calm day at the office. Little to no revisions on my project. Rather than wasting my time surfing the net I decided to try and draw once again. It's been years since I last drew because I wanted to. And even longer since I tried to draw while having a reference material. I have to admit I don't know if my skills got better or worse. I can't even compare my drawing style now with before. But I have to admit, I'm pretty happy with what I drew.

This is the Guyver III. It took me around 30 or so minutes to draw him.

The Guyver III



* Note: I've pretty much been writing negative posts the past few times so I thought I'd liven things up a bit with a video game rant. Besides I'm feeling a lot better already. Fr. Charlie was laid to his final resting place yesterday, the project's almost finished, and I got a three-day weekend. So I'm feeling pretty fine. I can't wait for my next bout of negativeness.

Got Need for Speed Most Wanted. Really wanted to buy it (Third sending me SMS all the way from Australia telling me how great the game was also helped) and so I did. Got me a copy and started playing.

To be honest I've re-started the game three times. The first time was okay but I had no strategy about choosing the Markers of the Black List opponents I'd beaten (I was going to go up against Black List # 10, Baron, at the time) so I tried again but made some stupid moves the second time. So three's a charm. I've beaten Baron, and Earl (Black List # 9). And what a great game it is - though somewhat monotonous.

I started with a Lexus IS300. Got it because it was the best handling car available (what is it with me and handling? I'll always take a slow car that handles well rather than a fast car that can't turn... except for the Ford GT I own in GT4 but that's another story...) and because it was one of the cars I could afford. I beat Sonny (Black List # 15 or "BL" - typing Black List is too long and, as you can see, I've spent way too many words trying to explain what the hell "BL" means) but didn't get his car. I beat the next guy and got his Lexus IS300 (which I promptly sold because his car handles worse than mine). Then BL # 13 was beaten and I got his Toyota Supra which I immediately souped up.

The story goes on and on. But to make it easier, I won Baron's Porsche Cayman S and all the unique performance upgrade markers I had at the time (5) were immediately dumped into said car. Comparing my Porsche's stats to other cars in the car lot, the handling is way up there with the Lambo Murcielago. Top speed and acceleration aren't quite up there but who cares. I love the Porsche. Nice engine noise and great handling.

Indeed it is a great game. However, it does get tiring. The races are somewhat repetitive and as you progress along the way the opponents become less racers and more demolishers. They keep ramming into you rather than racing. Plus the cops become more aggressive... which is a perfect segue for the next paragraph.

My record for longest police chase in NFSMW (go figure out what NFSMW means) was over 12 minutes using my tried and tested Lexus (if you think I'll intentionally use my Porsche Cayman S for pursuits you're dead wrong) and 50 plus cops chasing me. Amazing. My target bounty that time was 790,000 and after that chase it was up to 840,000. Wow.

Sadly NFSMW does get tiring (didn't I say that a few paragraphs ago?). Last night I played Way of the Samurai 2 for a couple of minutes and my interest level in NFSMW dropped. Horribly. Which is a good thing too so that I won't get too bored with the game.

One thing that scares me about NFSMW is that there's a Ford GT available there too. What's scary about that? How about this: In GT 4 when I found out that you could buy a Ford GT I played the game tirelessly until I acquired the GT. Then I stopped. This could happen in NFSMW too. Because I don't really care about beating the game. I just want the GT.

Oh by the way, the acting in NFSMW is superd. I really did get pissed off at Razor and Sgt. Cross. The actors delivered. Plus Josie Maran's there. 'Nuff said.


Friday, November 25, 2005


It's been a long and tiring week. I am drained. Exhausted. Physically. Mentally. Emotionally. Spiritually. Anything and everything has been drained from me.

Sure I may look and act fine. But I'm not. Deep down inside I can feel it. And I do not know why. I am drained.

I can sleep earlier and sleep in the afternoons. Physical drain is not that hard to recover from. All you have to do is pamper yourself a bit. Sleep, get a massaage, eat. Whatever.

Mental drain? Hmm. Read a book, play games, be dumb. Shut off your mind from thinking. Though I don't think that's the cure for brain drain.

Emotional? After all the shit that happened to me this past week (what with two uncles passing away days apart) I really have no clue how to fix this. Maybe shoot photographs. Maybe hang out at the mall. Maybe. Maybe. Maybe.

Spiritual? Death does that to you. Saps you of joy, real joyl. I can still laugh and make jokes (and be the butt of jokes) but am I really happy? Now? Not quite.

So I'm drained. Just don't know how to recharge.


Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Fr. Charlie Cruz, SVD

Yesterday I went to the wake of my uncle, Fr. Charlie Cruz, SVD. He passed away Monday, Nov. 21, 2005 of pancreatic cancer. This was the man I was talking about in one of my previous posts.

It felt surreal to see him inside a coffin when (here we go again) exactly one month ago yesterday we were in Bataan celebrating his Silver Anniversary of priesthood.

I've felt sadness at what happened but two things helped lift up my mood. The first came from Fr. Jerry Orbos' article in The Inquirer last Sunday about Fr. Charlie. Since they were classmates he left a few kind words about him and I really felt lighter inside when I read them. I don't know why.

The second came from Fr. Dan Isidro, SJ. He was my teacher / thesis advisor / confidant when I was in Naga. He gave me a passage to read from the Bible. Wisdom 3:1-9. After reading it I also felt better. Plus he was the only person to tell me that's its alright and natural to question why things happen that way. Everyone else I spoke to (who incidentally weren't priests) told me that questioning is bad and stuff. So if you're reading this, Fr. Dan, thanks.

Anyway rest in peace, Fr. Charlie. Thanks for everything.

May 24, 1945 - November 21, 2005.


Friday, November 18, 2005

Shit Happens

Yesterday morning I found out that one of my uncles had stage 4 pancreatic cancer and had but a few days left to live. Shocking since less than a month ago he was celebrating his 25th anniversary as a priest. Full of life, full of cheer.

Now there are two ways to look at this.

The first would be to thank God for the time He allowed His son to be with us here on Earth. After all, my uncle did live a beautiful life. He was a missionary priest in Africa before returning here due to illness. And what better way to thank God than to try to emulate the life of my uncle, his kindness, humility and charity.

The other way is to think that God has a strange sense of humor and that He loves to torment us by doing stuff like this (extreme happiness one moment then extreme sadness the next). I mean, my uncle JUST CELEBRATED 25 YEARS OF PRIESTHOOD LESS THAN A MONTH AGO and now he's dying?!? What the fuck, God? Why?

Me, I choose to do the first. Not because it's the Christian thing to do. Not because it's a sin to think the second one. But because if my uncle were in my shoes he'd do the first. No bitterness, no hate. Just kindness.

My uncle and I were never close. We rarely see each other but the past few times we did see each other I always felt so light inside. Being near him made me feel calm. And I always wanted to have a long chat with him about my beliefs, maybe just so I could get a clearer understanding of God. Guess that won't happen now.

I was even the photographer at his anniversary. And, sounding redundant, its not even one month past and he's on his deathbed? C'mon.

On a darker note, last night I also found out that the father of my mother's cousin (who I think was also her godfather) passed away for as yet undiscovered reasons. They just found him on the floor of his garage in the US.

So... Why is this happening? All I've been hearing about lately is death. Whether its people I'm close to (relatives) or people I see on TV (Eddie Guerrero, Jason Collier, Michael Park) people are dying. Because what? In the span of this year alone I've experienced more deaths than last year. This can't be the law of averages.

If this is part of growing up, then I want...


Thursday, November 17, 2005


Once again...

Once again I met a deadline. Passed the work, few revisions.

I know I can handle projects, that I've got enough experience to do what has to be done to finish a task. Whether it be doing it myself or asking others for help. So...

How come I still get so damn paranoid before a presentation? I still feel like everything's going to get f*cked up, that everything I did was wrong, and that I'll crap on my pants?

I don't know. But at least that keeps me on edge to perform well. At least I'm not complacent. At least I know I still give a f*ck about what I'm doing.

I don't know.


Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Various Stuff

First off, R.I.P. Eddie Guerrero. What is it with death and athletes lately? If my count is correct first it was WRC co-driver Michael "Beef" Park, then NBA center Jason Collier. Now WWE Superstar Eddie Guerrero has passed away. I still don't know how. And despite the fact that I really wasn't a big fan of his I appreciated the way he worked the crowd. If he was a heel you really hated him and when he was a face you really wanted him to win every match.

* * * * *

Anyway. I was looking at some pics from my Japan trip and I just wanted to reminisce and stuff. So here are some pics with a few comments...

Some pics of me and the Nissan R32 Skyline of my friend, Marco...

In the driver's seat Marco's Skyline

... and here are some shots of me, my dad, Marco, his wife Gracinha, and their son Atari...

Dad, Gani, Gracinha, Atari, and Marco Pinoy Flickr Meet - Japan

... I met Marco and his family through and they were kind enough to give me a pro account even if we didn't know each other personally. And I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to visit them in Japan. Dad and I both had a great time with them and we enjoyed seeing things you normally don't get to see in Japan.

And since we're in the topic of cars in Japan, I was able to go to Toyota's Megaweb where you could play Gran Turismo 4 for free!!!

IMG_0498 Road Warrior I

All you could use was a Toyota Esso Supra on Fuji Speedway '05. One lap. It was worth it anyway (since it was for free). I was also at the Tokyo Motor Show 2005 but that's worth another blog.

Anyway that's all for now.


Thursday, November 10, 2005


Read the receipt wrong. Gas is only P39++. The P45++ was the tax. But still. I remember a few weeks ago Velocity was "only" P32++.


Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Velocity, Drivers in Manila, Et Cetera, Et Cetera...


Just had the Mazda gassed up for this week. And I think I had to pay P45++ for a frickin' liter of Shell Velocity. For those of you not in the know, the Mazda will only run on said gas. Because it's a lemon. Because of some unknown reason which could not be remedied by mechanics.


The stupid E-Vat. Sure I understand the purpose of tax, but the real reason why taxes collected are never enough is because a lot of people cheat on their taxes. Or the corrupt government people steal them and report lower tax collections. So how does our brilliant government fix the problem of lack of taxes collected? Do they fix the way it is collected to ensure higher collections? Nope. Do they hunt down all corrupt people who steal our money? Nope (Of course it would be stupid to hunt yourself down). They penalize the people. They tax us more. And they wonder why we look down on the government. Sheesh.

Anyway, I just realized that driving in Manila will improve your reflexes. Why? Because jeepneys and buses here just turn at their pleasure, without looking at the side mirrors, and without signaling. Last Saturday I saw an L300 Truck planted into the grill of an 18-wheeler. I thought the L300 was turning left from a corner but when I saw the crash again the angle of the L300 was too far off from the corner. My theory? The L300 wanted to do a U-turn, banked right and turned left. Instantly. Without checking his side mirrors and/or rear-view mirror. The truck smashes into the L300 because it was either going too fast or it was too late to brake. End of theory. Who's at fault? I don't know. All I know was that if people were less stupid and greedy with driving less accidents would happen.

What else, what else? Hmm. Christmas is almost upon us. For the past two months we've been reminded of that. And for what? To buy, buy, buy. Buy stuff and let stores survive for one more year.

Happy holidays, y'all.


Thursday, November 03, 2005

A Quick Post

Got back to Manila Sunday 1am. The plane trip was fine.

Pretty depressed now that I'm back. Not because I have to go to work or anything like that. I just feel sad that Japan (and Hong Kong) are two amazing Asian countries both really progressive and high tech.

And The Philippines? Sad to say we've got so much potential and nothing to show for it. We're screwed. Effed up. Sad.