October 15, 2007


That's how we say "hi" here in Switzerland. This is my third week here and I'm enjoying it so much. Work is okay. I haven't really been doing anything stressful yet. I guess this is what they call honeymoon phase. But based on how everybody else is acting in the office, it looks like nothing very stressful happens anyway. I haven't heard any heated discussions, no shouting matches, no harrassed, stressed faces. It looks like we could all learn from the Swiss on how to handle pressure gracefully.

Not much to blog now, it's already 11:30 in the evening. I need to get some rest. Will post again as soon as I get the blog rhythm going.

Tschüss! (and that's how we say goodbye)

September 20, 2007


Tomorrow will be my last day with company A. As I am about to hand back my cellphone and laptop, I am drawn to contemplate on how the last two years had been.

1. I had so much fun travelling for the past two years. My work has brought me finally to East Coast USA. Boston and New York were exactly what I envisioned them to be. Also, I will never forget the time when I practically made Hong Kong and China my second home. Going back and forth to those places practically every other week was both fun and taxing. I still have my Hong Kong MTR card with about HK$500 credit left, so any takers, just send me a note.

2. I met some really interesting people. You know who you are. I am forever grateful.

1. I felt like an overpaid messenger. A lot of times I was just transmitting information back and forth between my subcontractors and my foreign counterparts. Not good. You guys pay me so much money and I wish you had given me the chance to use my brain once in a while.

2. Things went downhill when Mr. G was ceremoniously booted out of his job and was replaced by a data maniac. We were asked for lots of presentations, reports, and what-have-you's but we couldn't figure out how the data was being used and what was the resulting impact to the organization.

3. Ms. D continued to toe the line, so to speak. Not much help coming from her, as always.

4. I met some really interesting people. You know who you are. My message to you... I'm way past "I don't give a damn."

It was also interesting to know that, according to my Singapore mole, a lot of my Filipino colleagues based in Singapore are quite vocal about their sour graping at my move. Of course Zurich is expensive. That's the price you pay for the high quality of living. But please, before you say that I'm making such a bad move, go and do your research. Apparently, you didn't get to the part where Swiss employees are also among the highest paid in the world. And that Swiss taxes are among the lowest. But never mind. I just wish you'd be happy for me the same way that I've always been happy for you.

I also learned how excited Mr. D was to meet Ms. A, who like Ms. D is a toe the company line girl. Well Mr. D, I hope you have a great time with Ms. A. I'm pretty sure you'll have a fine time discussing how customer A's visit went. By the way, your problems with customer A are far from over. How you guys manage to tout your successes with customer A and reap lots of awards and yet, you still get a lot of field returns and lines down, is beyond me. Reality is, you and I are not aligned on the definition of success. Good luck. You all need it. And I don't really care if you don't want to meet me, or at least talk to me why I'm leaving the company, in spite of you being the head of our group. It just shows to me the kind of leadership you espouse. Thanks, but no thanks.

September 10, 2007


Everybody here using Microsoft Outlook raise your hand!

Okay. I'm sure you all know that there's a feature in Outlook that allows you to customize your emails with signatures. You know, that little snippet of text at the end of your email where you can add something like a quote, or your email business card. I'm sure, at one point or another, you've dabbled around with that feature. Or you've probably seen one from your officemate. I have my share of officemates who use that signature feature in Outlook. As far as I know, all of their signature suck.

Here's an example of a signature from some know-it-all jerk who thinks he's a hotshot:
"Da Mihi Animas, Caetera tolle." Now what in the hell does that mean? No, I'm not going to waste my bandwidth on translate.google.com trying to figure out what this means.

Another guy has this: "He who stops being better, stops being good." Oh-kay...

I've been thinking of using my own signature too. I want it to express sincerely how I feel right now. And right now, I'm seriously pondering on putting this into all of my emails:

Really. I don't anymore.

Have you ever bitched about something then, after a while, realize that your problems are nothing compared to what another person is going though? An hour ago, I was seething mad at the Land Transportation Office (LTO). As I'm now updating my documents, preparing for my move, I realized that you can actually exchange your valid driver's licence for a Swiss licence. All you have to do is to go to the local Swiss office and do the exchange. Sometimes, they will require you to do a driving test, but most often that not, they will just give you a Swiss driver's licence. Cool, huh?

So I paid a visit to the new LTO Satellite Office in Hypermart, C5. There they told me that I had to go to the main office in East Avenue to get it renewed. Now I don't want to do that. The office in East Avenue is just reeking of corruption. You haven't even told anyone what you're there for and they're already haggling with you that the best way to get it done is through someone from the inside, with a little (fuck me if it's really little!) grease money, of course. No amount of pleading will make them hear me out. Darn, if I had known it will be this tough, I should've just went there with my wife. She can get away with almost anything, when it comes to dealing with government morons. So seeing I have little choice but to either try another day at that office or go straight to LTO, I just went home.

Then I got an SMS from my sister in Beijing, asking me to call her ASAP. So I did and I learned that her husband had a terrible accident this morning on his way to work. He was riding his bike on the way to the Embassy when he got hit (by what, I still don't know. My sister wasn't in the right mental state for her to explain what happened.). She had to take him to the hospital and there they found that he had fractured his arm. He has the option to undergo a surgery where they will have to insert a titanium brace for his arm, or just have it in a cast, which is a cheap option but they couldn't guarantee that the break will heal properly. So now they're flying back to Manila tomorrow evening and going straight to St. Luke's.

All of a sudden, my problem with my driver's licence ain't worth shit. I just feel so sorry for my sister, having to go through that all alone in China. Makes me want to go there now and be by her side.

September 03, 2007


Grabe, lumalala ata ang pagiging makakalimutin ko. Kagabi, bago ako umuwi, bumili ako ng tatlong bote ng Cerveza Negra. Ito kasi yung favorite beer ko. Sa mga hindi pa nakakasubok, Cerveza Negra yung dark lager beer ng San Miguel. Parang katulad ito nung Guiness, yung dark beer na gawa sa Ireland. Kakaiba ang lasa nito. Para sa akin, medyo mapait-pait na parang kape na may halong dark chocolate, na may halong beer. Masarap. Subukan nyo.

So ayun, bumili ako ng tatlong bote nito. Nilagay ko sa freezer lahat tapos nagsimula na akong magcheck ng email. Hala! Nakalimutan ko. Ngayong hapon ko lang nalaman na may nilagay pala akong beer sa freezer. Pagbukas ko ng freezer, okay naman pala sila. Feeling ko kasi baka pumutok tapos kelangan ko pang maglinis ng ref. Ang dami pa namang laman yung ref ngayon.

So eto, Cerveza Negra muna ko habang nagi-email tsaka naga-update ng blog.

August 24, 2007


"You take the chance and go and all you need is your passport in one pocket and enough money for a flight home in the other pocket and life will take care of the rest. If you don't go, you may forever regret it." - Anonymous

No better time to break this than now. I'm leaving Manila next month. I accepted an offer from a company in Switzerland last June. Two weeks ago, my residence/work permit was approved in Bern. Last Monday, my entry visa was issued by the Swiss Embassy. Today, the company has emailed me my e-ticket.

Am I doing this for the money? Most likely no. Yes, I'll definitely be earning more there, but cost of living is pretty steep too. Still, the money left after taxes, rent, commute, utilities, and food is still a couple of times more than what I'm making before taxes in the Philippines. But as it is, my wife and I are already doing quite well here in Manila. Why fuck with a good thing, right?

The real reason why we're leaving is that we're tired. I'm tired.

I'm tired of dealing with the bureaucracy that is called the Philippine government.

I'm tired of daily two-hour commutes. And that's only one way from office to my house.

I'm tired of getting ripped off by the taxes here in the Philippines only to see those in government benefiting from it.

I'm tired of getting it up the arse everytime a public jeep crashes into my car and the driver brazenly tells me, "Wala akong insurance eh. Sigurado naman meron ka. Dun mo na lang pagawa yang bangga."

I'm tired of having to save up months and months for my simple extravagances here in Manila, our only passion that keeps us sane, when I can (almost) buy whatever I want with this new job.

I want to live life the way they do it. I want to enjoy life. I'm 32, and if I'm lucky enough to live until I'm 60, I might as well spend the rest of my life with a solid chance of actually enjoying it.

I know it's not going to be easy. It's a predominantly white country, and they speak a different language. But I'm taking my chance. I don't want to spend the rest of my life with another "what if" thought lingering at the back of my head.

August 22, 2007


Pinanood namin ni misis 'to last week. Magandang pelikula. On the surface, it looks like your usual misis versus kerida versus babaerong asawa movie. However, there's a nice twist in the how your usual keridas are portrayed, and for that reason alone, this movie is worth watching. Of course there are the usual cliches. Like Angelica's role as a jetsetting flight attendant. In the movie, you'll get an idea that flight attendants are pakawala: all night partying at their ports of call, getting laid by guys they meet in elevator. Goddamnit. In my ten years of flying all over the world on business trips, how come I've never gotten in bed with a flight attendant?! Not one!! There must be something wrong with me. Or maybe I should just accept the fact that I do not look like Aga Mulach. Whatever.

Anyway, I didn't feel too comfortable watching this movie with my wife. Is it because I felt guilty? Siguro nga. Though I've never banged any flight attendants, the whole idea of watching a kerida movie with my wife was simply too unsettling. It was like watching my life and Aga was playing my role. I found myself remembering those times when I was in the same position. Grabe, if they asked me to be a consultant in planning this film, or to take part in developing the story and writing the script, I know I would have done a terrific job of doing so.

It's a good thing I'm now over that period of my life. I'm not saying that I'll never do it again, or that if given the chance, I would. I'm just saying that my life is so much more peaceful now that I've gotten out of on the side relationships. Mas nakakahinga ako nang maluwag. Wala akong kabang nararamdaman everytime I leave my cellphone out of sight. Hindi ako nag-aalangan pumunta sa malls at nag-iisip kung sino ang pwedeng makakita sa akin. Life is so much better without having to worry about a third party. Tsaka sobra akong tinamaan dun sa sinabi ni Aga. Papano pag di ko na kayang ayusin yung mga nasira ko? Sobrang tama yung statement na yun. Ayoko nang bumalik sa situation na ganun palagi yung nasa isip ko.

August 21, 2007


This is it. Wala nang urungan to. Finally, nagkalakas ako ng loob para ipadala yung resignation letter ko sa boss ko. Actually, bago ko gawin yun, nag-usap muna kami sa phone. Syempre kelangan ganun. Alangan namang sa email ko lang gawin yung resignation ko. Mahirap na. Baka mamaya magkrus uli yung mga landas namin ng boss ko. Sabi nga nila, don't burn the bridge when you get there.

Anyways, ayun. Nakakatawa nga eh, kasi nung tinext ko yung boss ko kung pwede ko syang tawagan sandali, yun pala delayed yung flight nya mula San Jose papuntang Detroit. Tinanong ko sya kung okay lang ba na pagdating na lang nya sa Detroit ko sya tawagan. Eh sabi nya tawagan ko na daw sya so tinawagan ko na. Paligoy-ligoy pa ko nung simula. Lintek, hindi ko alam kung papano ko sisimulan eh. Tinanong ko muna kung ano gagawin nya sa Detroit. Maya-maya pa, binanatan ko na. Nung una di sya naka-imik. Nabigla siguro. Pero nung malaon, nagtatanong na kung san ako lilipat, pano ko nahanap yung trabahong lilipatan ko, at kung na-meet ko daw ba yung expectations ko dun sa trabahong binigay nya.

Nakapagtataka lang, ni minsan hindi nya tinanong kung anong problema. Pero okay lang kasi gusto ko ring iwasan yung usapang ganun. Kung tutuusin, wala naman talagang problema. May mga opportunities lang talaga na kelangan sunggaban mo, or else, buong buhay kang mag-iisip ng "what if". Ayoko ng ganun. Lalo lang akong hindi makakatulog pag ganun.

So ayun. Bago matapos yung usapan namin, sinabihan na lang ako na ilista ko yung mga current projects ko tsaka kung ano yung mga dapat ilipat sa iba kong kasamahan sa grupo. Actually, wala naman nang masyado akong ginagawa lately eh. Sana wala namang aberyang mangyari.

Countdown na. Last day ko na sa September 21. After nun, panibagong chapter na naman ang mabubuksan sa buhay ko.

August 15, 2007


Ayaw nyong maniwala ha...

Jeon Ji Hyun para sa Samsung DNA Printer

Jeon Ji Hyun uli, for Giordano

Jeon Ji Hyun for Laneige

Jeon Ji Hyun for Olympus

Niraket talaga ni Jeon Ji Hyun ang Giordano!

One more time!!

Mala-sineng commercial ng Giordano starring who else?

Marami pa nyan sa Youtube. Grabe. Love ko na si Jeon Ji Hyun.

Grabe. Ang lakas na naman ng ulan. Nagising ako kaninang umaga na medyo makulimlim pa. Wednesday ngayon, at dahil color coding ang sasakyan ko, mamayang pasado alas-diyes pa ako makakalabas ng bahay. So habang kumakain ng agahan, nag-check muna ako ng emails at nakapag-attend pa ng phone meeting. Hala, ilang minuto pa'y dumagsa na ang malakas na ulan. Buhos talaga! Halos pader na ng tubig ang bumababa galing kalangitan.

Isang oras na ang nakakaraan simula nang mag-umpisang bumuhos ang ulan. Wala pa ring humpay. Kung gaano ito kalakas kanina'y ganun pa rin ang lakas ngayon. Malamang baha na sa C5 at sa SLEX. Pwede na rin ako sigurong umalis na ng bahay kasi sino namang MMDA traffic enforcer ang nasa tamang pag-iisip na magpakabayani pa at mag-traffic sa ganitong kalakas na ulan? Ay... wala nga palang taga-MMDA na nasa tamang pag-iisip.

Pero ano naman ang gagawin ko dito sa bahay? Kahapon pa ako naka-telecommute. Nabuburaot na ko dito sa bahay. Oo nga, masarap. Panood-nood ka lang ng TV habang nagtatrabaho, pag nagugutom ka, magbukas ka lang ng ref at may pagkain ka na. At kadalasan, pwede akong makipagsagutan ng maaanghang na emails habang hubo't hubad ako. Pero nakakasawa na rin. Gusto kong lumabas. Maglakad. Makakita ng ibang tao. Nagsasawa na kong puro mga taga-Yahoo Messenger at Skype lang ang nakakasalamuha ko.

Teka. Wala na yatang ulan. Medyo tumila na. Ano ba, papasok ba ko o hindi na lang?

August 07, 2007


Shet, Sisig. Sikat ka na naman! Sino kaya yung may IP address na 69.153.213.# (AUSTIN EXPLORATION-040824003934) at nag-aksaya ng halos isang oras kakabrowse ng blog mo? At naka-39 page hits pa ha! Tinignan talaga lahat ng pages sa blog mo ah!!

Pootah, pare... Isa lang ibig sabihin nyan. May stalker ka na naman! May naglalaway na naman sa mala-Adonis mong katawan! Wahahaha!!

Hoy!! Stalker!! Kilala kita!! Hanggang dito ba naman eh hindi mo ko tatantanan? Kung may gusto kang malaman sa akin, text mo na lang ako o kaya mag-YM ka. Pakilala ka lang kasi simula nung malaman ko kung gano kasama yung ugali mo, pinagtatanggal kita sa Contacts ko!! Ano ba kelangan mong malaman at hindi mapakali yang daliri mo sa kakapindot sa mga links sa blog ko? Miss mo na ko noh?

Pwes, ikaw, hindi ko miss!! Nyahaha!!

August 04, 2007


Kakatapos lang namin mag-grocery sa Shopwise kanina. Konti lang pinamili namin. Shampoo, deodorant, green papaya facial cleanser, ilang kartong gatas, gulay-gulay at pansahog para sa uulamin sa darating na linggo. Syempre, ang walang kamatayang Pepsi Max din.

Pagdaan namin sa chicheria section, nanumbalik ako sa panahong suot kong pampasok sa eskwela ay puting short sleeve polo at khaki shorts. Nakita ko yung lagi kong binibili sa tindahan sa tapat ng bahay namin tuwing hapon.

Hehehe... Naaalala mo rin ba yung panahon ng kabataan mo? Ako, ito yung madalas kong merienda tsaka Coke 500. Kaya hindi na rin ako nagtataka kung bakit ganito ako kataba ngayon. Kung wala nito, Peewee crackers yung kadalasang pamalit. Pero hindi ako masyadong mahilig sa Peewee. Dati pa man, hindi ako nahilig sa maanghang na chicheria.

Bumili ako ng apat nito kanina. Bukas dadalhin ko sa office para sabay-sabay naming sariwain ang panahon ng kabataan namin.

July 31, 2007


Kakatapos ko lang kausapin si Mommy. Binalitaan ko sya na nagkausap na kami ng kapatid kong babae. Bakas sa salita ni Mommy yung pagkasabik na marinig muli ang boses ng kapatid ko. Sabik syang malaman kung ano na ang lagay nya, kung okay naman ba sila dun, at kung may nahanap na ba silang malilipatang apartment.

Talagang nami-miss na ni Mommy yung kapatid ko. Dahil siguro kasi sya ang bunso, alalang-alala si Ma sa paglipat ng kapatid ko sa China. Nariyan pa't kung anu-anong masasamang balita ang naririnig mo tungkol sa China ngayon. Mga siopao na may lamang hinimay na karton. Mga batang babaeng namamatay dahil sa expired na gamot. Mga asong nagkakasakit dahil may hinalong kung anong gamot sa pagkain. Tapos lately, pati yung paborito nating lahat na White Rabbit, yung malambot na nougat candy, meron daw halong formalin.

Buti na lang may Skype. Murang tumawag sa China pag gamit mo Skype. More than 30 minutes kami nag-usap ng kapatid ko pero parang US$0.50 lang ang natanggal sa prepaid account ko. Pero ang hirap ipaliwanag kay Ma kung papano ko nagagamit yung laptop ko para tawagan yung cellphone ng kapatid ko sa ibang bansa. Sabi ko na lang susunduin ko sya sa Sabado para matawagan namin yung kapatid ko. Sana naman, magkaron ng kusang loob yung kapatid kong lalaki na magpakabit ng DSL sa bahay para madalas silang makatawag sa China.

As usual, pag nag-uusap kami ni Ma, hindi mapipigilang hindi namin pag-usapan yung kapatid kong lalaki. Medyo iba kasi mag-isip yun sa aming tatlong magkakapatid. Siguro dahil sya ang nasa gitna, at lalaki, lumaki syang may taglay na inggit sa akin at sa bunsong kapatid naming babae. To make the long story short, medyo may pagka-pasaway si bro. Hayaan na lang natin sa ganun. Siguro naman kayong may mga kapatid dyan, naiintindihan nyo yung ibig kong sabihin. So ayun, naglabas na naman ng sama ng loob si Ma sa akin. Hindi daw nagkukusang bumili ng grocery. Hindi daw nag-aabot sa mga gastusin sa bahay. Hindi daw pinapaliguan yung mga asong binili nya. Ang masama nito, hindi ko alam kung papano sasagutin si Mommy. Gusto ko mang tumulong, papano? Kaya nakinig na lang ako.

Ang dami na namang umiikot sa isip ko, lalo na 'tong mga nangyayari sa pamilya ko. Mga problemang hindi naman ganap na problema. Mga gustong gawin na hindi ko naman alam kung papano sisimulan. Malamang hindi pa matatapos itong ganitong sitwasyon na lahat ng tanong sa isip mo, ewan lang ang kasagutan.

July 26, 2007


Di ko maipaliwanag ang nararamdaman ko ngayon. Malungkot na masaya na ewan. Kaninang umaga kasi, umalis na papuntang Beijing ang kapatid kong babae. Communications attache ng Philippine Embassy sa Beijing ang asawa nya. First time nilang mapo-post overseas. Ganun pala sa DFA. Six years nang six years ang mga assignments. So ayun. Six years sila sa Beijing. Ayos. Next year may libreng hotel na kami para sa Beijing Olympics. Saya diba?

Pero kagabi, di maipaliwanag na lungkot ang naramdaman naming pamilya habang kumakain kami ng hapunan. Bawat subo, ang hirap lunukin. Parang kasing laki ng meatball ng Sbarro's spaghetti yung nakabara sa lalamunan ko. Kahit anong inom ko ng Pepsi Max, ayaw dumiretso sa tiyan ko.

Napapatingin ako sa Nanay ko. Namumula na naman ang ilong. Ganun si Ma pag gustong maiyak. Alam ko pinipigilan lang nya pero siguro ayaw nyang ipakita sa amin yung lungkot na nararamdaman nya nung time na yun. Yung kapatid kong babae kasi yung naging kasa-kasama na nya ever since mamatay si Daddy. Kasamang manood ng sine, magshopping, magmall. Pano na to ngayon.

Bago magboard ng eroplano yung kapatid ko, nagawa pa nga mag text sa akin. Sasakay na daw sila ng eroplano. At sinabi pang dalasan ko daw ang dalaw kay Ma. Panay daw ang iyak kanina nung paalis sila ng bahay.

Masaya ako para sa kapatid ko. Biruin mo yun, makapunta ka ng Beijing at malibot mo ang China at anim na taon mong gagawin yun. Marami sigurong masha-shopping yun dun. Tapos makaka-experience pa sya ng snow ngayong Christmas. Pero at the same time, nalulungkot ako sa Mommy ko. Para siguro syang naputulan ng isang paa. At siguro, ganito rin ang nararamdaman nya ngayon. Yung pakiramdam na ewan.

July 18, 2007


Yup. Buhay pa ko. Medyo inis lang sa trabaho, pero kaya pa naman. Matagal na rin pala hindi ko napuntahan tong blog ko. Kadalasan kasi hindi ko rin alam kung ano isusulat ko. Pare-pareho lang naman ang nangyayari sa buhay ko araw-araw. Papasok sa opisina. Internet buong umaga. Kakain ng lunch. Tapos sisimulan ko nang basahin yung mga work emails ko.

Oo. Pasaway ako sa office. Kasi naman halos wala na ko ginagawa. Hindi naman ako binibigyan ng bagong assignments. Hay. Ang hirap talaga pag hindi ka peyborit ni boss.

May 06, 2007


Alas dos trenta na ng umaga pero hindi pa rin ako makatulog. Ewan ko ba. Ba't ang hirap akong dapuan ng antok nitong mga araw na 'to. Parang takbo nang takbo ang isip ko pero wala namang tinutunguhan. Namomroblema ng mga problemang hindi naman dapat problemahin. Ano ba 'to? Pangitain ng pagkasira ng ulo? O dala lamang nang sobrang pag-inom ng Pepsi Max?

Natatawa sa 'kin si Freya kanina. Addict na daw ako sa Pepsi Max. Isip tuloy ako... Ba't nga ba ang sarap ng Pepsi Max sa panlasa ko? Kung tutuusin, lasang gamot naman. Aba. Di kaya Pepsi Max ang sanhi ng panimula ng pagkasira ng ulo ko? Hahaha... Lagot sila sa 'kin pag nangyari yun. Idedemanda ko sila tulad nung nangyari sa Pepsi Scam maraming taon na ang nakakalipas.

Hay. Makatulog na nga lang. Pero bago yun, inom muna ko. Tubig naman.

March 14, 2007


Nabasa nyo na ba to?

Nakakasawa na.

Nahihiya na kong tawaging isang Pilipino.

February 13, 2007


I'm too angsty enough to do any serious blogging lately. Things are not falling into place the way I want them. Midlife crisis has set in early for me.

Fuck you. Fuck the whole world.

And no, Valentine's has got nothing to do with this. Let's leave Cupid out of this shit.