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Archive for July, 2009

Untitled…

A week has already passed since that “senior moment” episode, and I still can’t get over the thought that I may have inadvertently squandered what was probably one of the very few opportunities that I will ever get to talk to her.

I am truly ashamed at myself, in addition to being disappointed, for being such an idiot. While I do pride myself on being able to talk my way in and out of almost any situation, a little thing like that should have been a walk in the park. A piece of cake if you will. But it wasn’t. It was as if my gift of gab — sharpened in the cutthroat environs of the corporate jungle for nearly two decades — had suddenly, and inexplicably deserted me that day.

Ah well, another day perhaps? Hopefully. Then again, maybe this whole thing is a mistake. Heck, maybe I shouldn’t even be thinking about it, lest I end up doing something even more stupid — something that I’ll regret for the rest of my life.

Oi! why do everything in my life have to be so complicated?

So I saw her again yesterday, and I was hoping I’d get another shot. I was primed and pumped, and ready for action. But alas, no such thing happened. She was busy, and as always, surrounded by colleagues. Why do women always flock together anyway? for protection? To keep predators at bay? And why am I even writing this entry? Oh yeah, now I remember… to remind me how big an idiot I was.

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Switching sides…

For the past four weeks I’ve been blogging, emailing and surfing the net using this nifty little gadget…

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That’s right folks, I’ve made the switch to Sun’s broadband services. Though not as efficient as I was hoping it would be, it still delivers on its promise of lightning fast connection… SOMETIMES, that is. My main gripe is that everything starts to slow down or worse, grind to a halt, during the evenings when internet usage is at its highest, and when I’m usually found roaming the www and blogging.

I’ve already complained to their CS department and they promised (as usual) to look into it. I’m not gonna hold them to that promise though, because like everything else in this country, it’ll take an act of Congress or even God, to make these telecom companies move their collective butts.

Good thing I opted for an account without a lock-in period, I may have to pay a bit more at P799 a month — which by the way is P200 cheaper that what I’ve been shelling out for SmartBro — but at least I’m not tied to a contract. Should things become unbearable, connection-wise, I can ditch this thing anytime without going through the pre-termination hassles, and maybe switch to their pre-paid broadband connection so I can still use the little USB modem whenever I feel like going mobile.

And speaking of those pesky lock-in period, my one year contract with SmartBro will expire today, July 13. Since I’ve no intention of maintaining my broadband account with them anymore, I decided to drop by their business office, last Saturday, to inform them of my decision.

Me (talking to a customer service rep): Hi, my lock-in period expires on Monday, July 13, and I’ve decided to discontinue my subscription, so I’m requesting to have my account terminated.

CS: Okay sir, but you will have to come back on the 13th to formally terminate your account.

Me: Huh? What’s wrong with doing it now?

CS: Sir, if we terminate your account today, we will have to charge you with a pre-termination fee…

Me: What? but the 13th is only TWO days away, and since it’s a Monday, I’ll be very busy. And I seriously doubt if I’ll have the time to drop by any Smart business office, that’s why I wanna do it today, while I have the time.

CS: I understand sir, but that is the company’s policy.

Me: So, what if I can’t make it on that day, or the day after that?

CS: You can still drop by any time at your convenience, sir.

Me: And what would happen if I suddenly forgot to do it? Would Smart continue charging me for the service?

CS: Yes sir.

Me: See? That’s why I WANT TO DO IT NOW instead of the thirteenth! I will be busy the whole week and I cannot squeeze it in my schedule!

CS: Sir let me check your account information first.

He started typing on the keyboard, and a few seconds later…

CS: Sir, it says here that the cut-off date of your account is on the 24th of every month. So if you cannot make it next week, you still have a few more days to spare.

Me: Ah ok, that’s good news then. But what if I suddenly have to go abroad, or get hit by the H1N1 virus and I cannot make it on or before the 24th, what then?

CS: …. err, then we will have to charge you for the following month’s service.

Me: Even if I had already informed you guys about the termination?

CS: Yes sir, that’s why you have to be here in person before the cut-off date so we can process everything…

Me: Kaya nga I want to do everything in advance eh! Just in case I become unavailable in the following weeks…

By this time I was already losing patience. I cannot for the life of me understand why this company chose to make it difficult for its subscribers to terminate their account. I’ve already wasted fifteen minutes of my life waiting for my number to be called, only to be told to come back on another day — all because of “company policy”.

And before I could blurt out some unprintables about Smart and its stupid termination procedures to the guy in front of me, I left. I gave up, because there’s no use reasoning with a company that refuses to be flexible with its policies. I mean, TWO f**king days? Come on…

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Mental lapse…

Stupidity can really get the best of me sometimes. More so, when it comes to the affairs of the heart.

I was busy filling out one of those forms required for new samples at a client’s office, the other day, when this girl that I’ve been fancying (no, she’s not the one I blogged about some months back) for some time came out from one of the conference rooms and went straight to the counter where I was standing.

Although we’re both familiar with each other, we, I mean… I, have never had the chance to talk to her personally. Not that I didn’t have the courage to, I do. It’s just that she was always surrounded by colleagues, or is busy talking to people.

Oh yes folks, it’s the same old story.

She was asking for something from one of the attendants behind the counter when, for about a second or two, our eyes met. It wasn’t one of those long, lustful gaze that one often see in the movies, but a rather meaningless blank stare that can hardly qualify as a “moment”. Heck, I cannot recall now if I had even managed to smile at her or not.

Anyway, after finishing my task I promptly left the counter and sat down on one of the sofas in the lobby to rest a bit. She also left not long after that, and headed back to the conference room, but not after stealing a glance towards my direction.

It was then that I realized that had I just missed a rare opportunity. She was ALONE, and the timing couldn’t have been more perfect. What the heck was I was thinking then? I could have said something for Pete’s sake — perhaps even something as innocent as, “Hi!”.

Man, talk about having a senior moment…

Know what? I am hopeless, and I deserve be shot. Better yet, they should dip me in a vat of boiling tar first before putting me out of my misery.

Now if you will all excuse me, I need to bang my big fat head against the wall…

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Going classical…

Fusion, or the blending of different genres of music may be okay for many people but there are some, like classical music instance, that are better left the way it was intended to be played by the master composers.

Call me old-fashioned, but I like my classical music the way it is.

Taking a cue from JJ, AKA Atticus’ recent entry, I’m posting that very same piece, Canon in D (which by the way happens to be one of my all-time favorites ) by Johann Pachelbel in it’s original version, which is of the 17th century Baroque style of music, courtesy of the San Francisco-based Voices of Music.

Also, the musical instruments used by the ensemble for this performance are the very same type of purely wood-based instruments used during the German-born composer’s time. Now THAT’s what I call being true to the original…

Beautiful, and flawless… I don’t know how else I can describe this harmonious blending of stringed instruments. It is truly a heavenly-inspired piece that made me appreciate classical music the more.

Sad to think that this 320 year-old masterpiece was totally forgotten for nearly three centuries, and was almost lost to the world were it not for its discovery in the early years of the twentieth century. Since then, it has become a staple in every classical recordings, and a perennial favorite during church weddings.

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I just wish…

Pink fences, half-exposed urinals along EDSA (also in pink), and now this:

Footbridge exposes students to peeping toms
Lawyers seeks changes in structure

By Allison Lopez
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 20:31:00 06/24/2009

MANILA, Philippines — A lawyer has criticized the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) for building a footbridge in the university belt area that he claimed “exposed” instead of protected female students, especially those wearing skirts.

In a June 21 letter to MMDA Chairman Bayani Fernando, lawyer Ernesto Francisco Jr. complained that the design of the crossover steel-type footbridge on Legarda Street corner C. M. Recto Avenue violated the right to privacy and even contributed to the “indignity and humiliation” of its female users.

“This is because the steel footbridge is designed in such a way that there are open and uncovered spaces between the steps of its staircases and also, along the sides of the staircases and main bridge. These open and uncovered spaces expose the privacy of female pedestrians, mostly students and employees in uniforms, using the footbridge,” he said in a three-page letter.

Read the rest of the article here.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for public safety and convenience. That footbridge on Legarda street is a very welcome addition, and has been a long time coming — what with the thousands of students that pass through that street each day. But exposing female pedestrians to those voyeuristic freaks for the sake of security just doesn’t make any freaking sense.

While the MMDA should be commended for doing their job inspite of criticisms left and right, I just wish they’d leave the planning and designing aspects of public structures, such as that footbridge, to the REAL experts and not to the color-challenged people in their organization.

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Man, I was so wishing I had that “I Park Like an Idiot” sticker on hand when I saw this…

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Transformers 2

Hot cars, cool visual effects, and a hundred and fifty minutes of mind-numbing CGI-rendered metallic mayhem. It’s pure, unadulterated escapism. What more could you ask for in a popcorn movie?

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Oh, and let’s not forget the SSSSizzling hot as ever, Megan Fox, AKA Mikaela Barnes in the movie. What, you think I’d shell out my hard-earned moolah just to watch a couple of over-sized metallic changelings duke it out on the big screen? No freaking way! I need my eye candy.

That was the good part, and now for the bad…

While it is undoubtedly a highly entertaining flick, with plenty of adrenalin to satisfy even the most hard-core of action figure fanatics, I found the plot rather flimsy and, well… full of loopholes and inconsistencies. Oh yes, there are quite a few of them and if you just pry your eyes away from Megan Fox’s long luscious legs for a moment, and open them (your eyes, I mean) a wee bit wider, you’d see them staring right at you… point blank.

Now, I’m not gonna go over Ms Fox’s white pants that miraculously remained clean and unsoiled (and I bet they smelled good too) all throughout the action sequence, it’s been discussed to death already. What did bother me the most was the fact that, even after the explosive downtown rumble between the Autobots and Decepticons (with of course, the humans in-between) in the first transformer movie, the public is still unaware of the existence of these alien robots on their planet. Don’t you find that odd? I mean, in this day and age of CNN, instant messaging and camera phones, the chances that it will go unnoticed is, well… Infinitesimal.

Can you imagine a herd of elephants rampaging on a New York City street, in broad daylight, without anyone noticing?

Okay okay, I know, we’re supposed to suspend our disbelief for just a few short hours. It’s science fiction after all. But dang, even in a make-believe, alternate reality, transformer universe, that’s asking way too much…

Niggles aside, I still enjoyed the movie. And that is what’s important, right?

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Untitled…

Since moving to this God-forsaken corner of Manila six years ago, going to bed and waking up to the non-stop blaring of those cursed loudspeakers (yes, the very ones parked outside my bedroom window, four stories below, churning out an assortment of Michael Jackson songs as I’m typing this) has become part my everyday life. Silence it seems, has become such a rare commodity in this place that, if I do get it, I’d probably have Mother Nature to thank for the favor.

And so it was that I thought I’ll be enjoying another one of those rare moments of “quietness” last week, when typhoon ‘Feria’ threatened to make its way towards Manila. Minutes prior to the hours of the evening (between 8 to 10 pm, announced PAGASA) that the typhoon was expected to pass through, the street was miraculously cleared of its “trash”.

Vendors and sidecars had already sought shelter in whatever nooks and crannies they could find. And save for a few hardy souls who preferred to wait it out in the open, the street was virtually empty, and more importantly… quiet.

Nothing like the fury of nature to strike fear in the hearts of these intrepid entrepreneurs…

But alas, ever the finicky woman that she is, mother nature decided, at the last moment, to take a detour. And no sooner than PAGASA announced the not-so-good news, out came the dvd vendors in full force, with their makeshift stalls, and yes… those dang loudspeakers.

And so the torment continues.

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