Saturday, 29 December 2007

Just a thought



I'm just preoccupied with so many things.

Family crisis, personal stuffs, problems at work. I'm like a juggler struggling to keep his balance and grip.

I badly needed some sleep, maybe I can find peace in slumber.

I'm still hoping that tomorrow's going to be much more brighter.

One thing's for sure. I won't quit, never.

Monday, 17 December 2007

What's the latest, Eben?

What I'm up to lately.

We went to Lau Pa Sat to have a taste of Jolly V Fried Chicken – an imitation of the popular filipino fast food chain Jollibee. I will post a separate article about this.

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A Christmas Lunch was given for all filipino employees @ Awon Korean Restaurant. The food is delicious! I really love korean food, especially kimchi!

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Last Friday we had Christmas Party for the whole company. Lots of food, booze and gift exchanges. There's karaoke, too! (I sung James Ingram's Just Once for the nth time, haha). It's
a memorable night for me...

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Movie marathon Saturday. All Darren Aronofsky films (Pi, Requiem for a Dream, and The Fountain). Among the three, Requiem is definitely my number one Aronofsky film. It's a movie about addiction in many forms (it could be drugs, TV, food or sex). The main characters have dreams but in the end they succumbed in their addiction. Ellen Burtsyn's performance is just superb. The script, the acting, cinematography, editing, everything was like presented to the audience in a silver platter. The musical score by Clint Mansel (who also scored The Fountain) is really haunting. The main theme, Lux Aeterna by the Kronos Quartet will always be my favorite musical score. More about Requiem for a Dream here.

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I lost my ATM card and online banking device last Saturday. I remember I went to Lucky Plaza and had my lunch at Kabayan resto, I placed my wallet on top of the table and got busy finishing my sinigang. Then I left the place, and didn't realized that I forgot something. Good thing though, that my credit card wasn't inside my wallet! Or else I'll have another fever knowing that someone might be using it. I reported the incident to my bank's customer hot line and got a replacement card for 5 SGD this morning. My new online banking device will be mailed to me on Wednesday, that's another 20 SGD charge. *sigh*

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My friends and I are going to Kuala Lumpur on the 19th and will stay there until the 23rd. Just a time to relax after months of hard work. Our itinerary includes visiting the Batu Caves, Petronas, and going to Genting. I'm so excited now but...I haven't packed!!!


That's all for now. Ciao till next time!

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

The Fountain of Wealth

Tuesday night, still not in the mood to go home early, I decided to roam around and take a peek on some of the city's “eye candy”. I was heading to the City Hall MRT station when an idea popped into my mind, “why not go and visit Suntec City?”. And so the next thing I knew is that I'm walking in the busy underground path of the Raffles City Link going to Suntec.


Suntec City is Singapore's largest shopping mall. The convention center inside the mall is also the home of the annual IT Show. Situated at the hub of the shopping mall is The Fountain of Wealth, the largest fountain in the world according to the 1998 Guiness Book of Records.


Built in 1995 as part of Suntec City development, this giant fountain is made up of bronze, having a circular ring with a circumference of 66 meters supported on four slanted columns. The area covered by the fountain reaches 1683.07 meters, and a height of 13.8 meters.


At night, a laser and sound performance takes place in the fountain. Live song and laser message dedications can also be seen. During that night, the laser light displays “Love is the Message” in various animated way, while the background music is from the movie Moulin Rouge, Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor singing “Come What May”.


In Chinese culture, water is the symbol of life and wealth, and the inward motion of the water symbolizes the retention of wealth for Suntec City. Water that's flowing inwards represents riches pouring in, according to feng shui experts. I just noticed that during that night, the water isn't flowing inwards but outwards instead. Water was being sprinkled upwards into the air, I think that means “sharing the blessings”.


It is believed that a visitor who walk around the central base of the fountain three times and touching the water at all times will gain good luck. Too bad I wasn't able to do this, maybe on my next visit when the fountain is turned off.




Here are some of the pictures that I took during that night. I also recorded a short video clip of the laser and sound presentation (to be uploaded soon). The last photo is a christmas tree located at the upper level of the fountain.


Truly it is a feast for the eye, a beautiful sight indeed.












Reference:

http://www.sunteccity.com.sg/fountain/index.htm


Monday, 10 December 2007

Blog Readability Test

cash advance

Is this for real? Try it.

I dreamed a dream

I had a dream my life would be
So different from this hell I'm living
So different now from what it seemed
Now life has killed the dream I dreamed.

Friday, 7 December 2007

I...am...still...will

I may be shattered, but I'll be whole again.

I will not shed a tear.

I learn from my mistakes.

I am not blaming anybody.

I am accountable for my own actions, decisions, and choices I make.

I have to deal with its outcome.

I am not bitter.

I will not be a source of negativity.

I won't hurt anyone.

I will not let myself sink in the depths of other people's sadness, I will not let myself drown.

I need to go back to my senses.

I still have those people who makes me feel I am important.

I have purpose and worth.

I am still blessed.

I am still alive.

I am still here, walking in the face of the earth.

I am still battling to survive in this urban jungle.

I am still moving and looking forward.

I may be naive, gullible or plain stupid at times, but this is me.

I am imperfect.


I, nothing more, nothing less.

Thursday, 6 December 2007

A day of kindness

People from our client's office helped me a lot today. One of them lend her email account so that I can send some urgent information to the help desk. Another one helped me by giving directions on finding a nearby bus terminal where I can buy tickets going to Kuala Lumpur.


People at Tai Hwa Pork Noodle seem to recognize me already, being a patron or "suki" of their minced meat noodle, they're giving me large portions now.


It's been raining all day and I forgot to bring an umbrella. Luckily, an old man offered to share his umbrella with me as we walk to the bus stop.


My manager commended me for a job well done, then she instructed me to assist my fellow teammate who's having a hard time in resolving some technical problems in our system. It's an urgent task, but she's not putting all the pressure on me. After an hour, my teammate and I came up with a solution, and we're about to check it out tomorrow morning. It's a team effort.


It's all in a day's work as usual, but I didn't had the feeling that I'm all used up. It's like this day has been full of positivities, regardless how little it may be.


At least, I have a reason not to utter that I'm tired of being kind.


Tuesday, 4 December 2007

My name according to Numerology

Try it! -> click here.

You entered: ebenezer nicomedes dominguez

There are 26 letters in your name.
Those 26 letters total to 137
There are 12 vowels and 14 consonants in your name.

What your first name means:

HebrewMaleRock or stone of help. Famous bearer: the Old Testament Samuel gave the name Ebenezer to a stone set up in recognition of God's assistance in defeating the Philistines; miserly Ebenezer Scrooge in Charles Dickens' novel 'A Chnsitmas Carol'.


Your number is: 11


The characteristics of #11 are:
High spiritual plane, intuitive, illumination, idealist, a dreamer.


The expression or destiny for #11:

Your Expression number is 11. The number 11 is the first of the master numbers. It is associated with idealistic concepts and rather spiritual issues. Accordingly, it is a number with potentials that are somewhat more difficult to live up to. You have the capacity to be inspirational, and the ability to lead merely by your own example. An inborn inner strength and awareness can make you an excellent teacher, social worker, philosopher, or advisor. No matter what area of work you pursue, you are very aware and sensitive to the highest sense of your environment. Your intuition is very strong; in fact, many psychic people and those involved in occult studies have the number 11 expression. You possess a good mind with keen analytical ability. Because of this you can probably succeed in most lines of work, however, you will do better and be happier outside of the business world. Oddly enough, even here you generally succeed, owing to your often original and unusual approach. Nonetheless, you are more content working with your ideals, rather than dollars and cents.


The positive aspect of the number 11 expression is an always idealistic attitude. Your thinking is long term, and you are able to grasp the far-reaching effects of actions and plans. You are disappointed by the shortsighted views of many of your contemporaries. You are deeply concerned and supportive of art, music, or of beauty in any form.


The negative attitudes associated with the number 11 expression include a continuous sense of nervous tension; you may be too sensitive and temperamental. You tend to dream a lot and may be more of a dreamer than a doer. Fantasy and reality sometimes become intermingled and you are sometimes very impractical. You tend to want to spread the illumination of your knowledge to others irrespective of their desire or need.


Your Soul Urge number is:
5

A Soul Urge number of 5 means:

The 5 soul urge or motivation would like to follow a life of freedom, excitement, adventure and unexpected happening. The idea of travel and freedom to roam intrigues you. You are very much the adventurer at heart. Not particularly concerned about your future or about getting ahead, you can seem superficial and unmotivated.


In a positive sense, the energies of the number 5 make you very adaptable and versatile. You have a natural resourcefulness and enthusiasm that may mark you as a progressive with a good mind and active imagination. You seem to have a natural inclination to be a pace-setter. You are attracted to the unusual and the fast paced.


You may be overly restless and impatient at times. You may dislike the routine work that you are engaged in, and tend to jump from activity to activity, without ever finishing anything. You may have difficulty with responsibility. You don't want to be tied down to a relationship, and it may be hard to commit to one person.


Your Inner Dream number is: 6

An Inner Dream number of 6 means:

You dream of guiding and fostering the perfect family in the perfect home. You crave the devotion from offspring and a loving spouse. You picture yourself in the center of a successful domestic unit.

Monday, 3 December 2007

Camera Testing

Last Saturday, I bought a SONY DSC T2 digital camera at the recently held SITEX 2007 convention at the Expo in Tanah Merah. Today, I did some experiments and tests to familiarize myself with the features of this camera, so during my lunch break, I decided to took some pictures in the premises of my work place. Here are some of the pictures that I took in the vicinity of the ICA, where I'm currently working.























For more pictures, visit my multiply page.

Friday, 30 November 2007

Minced Meat Noodles

My preferred lunch everyday!

Tai Hwa Pork Noodle has been hailed as one of the best five "Good Food in Singapore", and I couldn't agree more. Their minced meat noodle is the best!


For the noodles, you have two choices. One is mee kia (thin noodles) and the other one is mee pok (flat noodles). The noodles are tossed with soy sauce and black vinegar (more vinegar, mas masarap). I think it's the vinegar and soy sauce that give's that punchy flavor.


The meal includes lean minced pork, tender pork slices, wonton, pork balls, and slices of pork liver. Garnished with crisp-fried dried fish (like daing in Pinas but not salty) and a bowl of soup made rich with pork bones and sea weeds.


They have a lot of customer's, so expect a long queue of hungry people especially during lunch time. I usually go to the place at around 11:30 AM to avoid this long queue.


Price ranges from 4SGD (Php120) for the smallest bowl, 5SGD (150Php) for the medium one, and 6SGD (180Php) for the biggest. I always go for the biggest.


Here's a glimpse of it. Spare me if the pictures couldn't capture the enticing taste of their famous Minced Meat Noodles. But one thing's for sure about this good food, "may sarap na babalik-balikan!".

Before the invasion...


...Mix it all together...


Woah! It's all gone! What happened??


Tai Hwa Pork Noodle is located behind the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority building, near Lavender MRT station.

Wednesday, 28 November 2007

The 'Kapuso' in me

While most of my friends are hooked up with the latest episode of Heroes and other foreign shows, I on the other hand remained "makabayan" or should I say "jologs" by watching Philippine prime time series. Thanks to youtube and veoh, I won't miss an episode of Marimar and La Vendetta, though I hope the uploaders will never get tired of recording and uploading each episode. Aside from these series, I also watch documentaries (I-Witness) and infotainment shows like Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho and Pinoy Meets World. I also watch Eat Bulaga, because I miss their Bulagaan portion and Joey De Leon's rants. SOP (Sobrang Okay Pare) just to have a glimpse of OGRE (Ogie and Regine), Nuts Entertainment (mainly because of their Balakubak portion) and Bubble Gang for a dose of laughter, thanks to Bitoy. When it comes to news, I go to gmanews.tv, watching 24 Oras and Saksi.

I just hope that, by next year, GMA will launch their international channel here in Singapore. Kahit solohin ko na lang ang pagbabayad ng subscription. haha!

Saturday, 24 November 2007

Warehouse Sale

(My fever is gone, and so I'm back in the blogosphere. :D )


Last week, we went to Jurong East to check out Creative's Warehouse Sale.


I bought a Zen Microphoto for 180SGD (under 6000PHP), I know it's so 2005 but for an 8GB mp3 player with FM radio, photo, and voice recorder, I think it's a good deal. I also bought an optical mouse (with the Singapore Flag design) for 5SGD (about 150PHP).


There's a lot of Pinoys in the venue, buying “pasalubong” or gifts since the Christmas season is now just a month away.

Change of Blog...template!

As you can see, I changed my blog template to Minima, and I also tweaked some html codes so that I can maximize the space. Me thinks this one's better, I just need to add or change something on the header (an image perhaps).

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Fever

These past few weeks wasn't smooth sailing after all.


My parents are once again in the midst of a “shaky” relationship. This has been very nostalgic for me. When I'm still in the Philippines, I served as an “absorber” of my mother and father's grievances. Though I believe that they should handle it themselves as mature individuals, I have no choice but to listen, because that's the only thing that I can do for them. Somehow, if their marriage fails (which I hope not), I can accept the reality that our family is not as intact as I thought it could be - an idea that I used to reject few years ago.


The house where I'm staying at has been a shelter of never ending conflicts. I've been here for three months now, and since then a lot of things had happened in this place. We even reached to a point where one of my house mate was about to move out because the landlord was so furious. I cannot call this place a “home” - just walls, floor, windows and rooms.


Some personal matters that I don't know how to handle that it feels like I'm always left hanging with unanswered questions. Emotional roller coaster as you may call it. I hate the feeling...


In times like these, no matter how hard I try to cope up, I still feel helpless. I try to keep myself busy so that my mind can focus on some other things, but at the end of the day, when you're all alone, they're all coming back to you. I tried to talk to somebody, especially those who proclaim themselves as your “best friend”, but they're so busy with their own lives that they can't spare you at least a minute or two.


So I keep it to myself, most of the time. I have to deal with the same set of emotions over and over again as if I've never had enough. Until when? I'm not quite sure.


Friday, 16 November 2007

Garbage


Many people are like garbage trucks.
They run around full of garbage, frustration, anger and dissapointment.
As their garbage piles up, they need a place to dump it.
And if you let them, they'll dump it on you.
When someone wants to dump on you, don't take it personally.
You just smile, wave, wish them well, and move on.
You'll be happy you did.

Monday, 12 November 2007

Thanatos - If I can't be yours

listen to the song here. (courtesy of rgutierezd of youtube)

Now its time, I fear to tell
I've been holding it back so long
But something strange deep inside of me is happening
I feel unlike I've ever felt
And its making me scared
That I may not be what I think I am

What of us? What do I say?
Are we both from a different world?
'Cos every breath that I take, I breathe it for you
I couldn't face my life without you
And I'm so afraid there's nothing to comfort us
What am I, if I can't be yours?

I don't sleep, don't feel a thing
And my senses have all but gone
Can't even cry from the pain
can't shed a tear now
I realise we're not the same and it's making me sad
'Cos we can't fulfill our dream in this life

So I must let us break free
I can never be what you need
If there was a way through the hurt then I would find it
I'd take the blows, yes I would fight it
But this is the one impossible dream to live
What am I, if I can't be yours?

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The Eminence Orchestra performed this song in their 2005 concert, A Night In Fantasia. You can watch the video on youtube courtesy of dimix86. I think the orchestra version is way better. Viola Power!


This song goes to all of my fellow Evangelion fans. Enjoy!

Eben's Crib

One quiet sunday late night, I found this nice website. It calls itself "the real estate test". You'll draw your idea of a house, answer some questions, and an explanation of your personality will be revealed to you. Here is a drawing of my kind of house and its relation to my personality, explained:

You are sensitive and indecisive at times. You are a freedom lover and a strong person. You will avoid being alone and seek the company of others whenever possible. You love excitement and create it wherever you go. Once you have a problem, you need a friend with you. son.

When it comes to love, you shut yourself off. It's difficult to win your heart because you have decided to keep your feelings deep inside. You see the world as it is, not as you believe it should be.

You added a flower into your drawing. The flower signifies that you long for love. It also safe to say that others don't see you as a flirt. You don't think much about yourself.



I must say that the explanation is a direct hit! Here, draw your own house. Try it!

Friday, 9 November 2007

Ano bang latest, Eben?

Noong nakaraang miyerkules, muntik na ako masagasaan. Hindi namalayan na naka-red light na pala at wag munang tumawid. Abala kasi ako sa kakatext.


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Ngayon ko nadiskubre na may pagka Kengkoy yung manager ko. Napapasayaw pag may error yung program! Hindi siya ganun pag yung indian teammate ko yung kasama niya. Haha.


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Walang YM at Internet sa trabaho for the whole month of November (sad). Wala kasi nun sa ICA (Immigration and Checkpoints Authority).


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Kelangan labanan ang antok sa trabaho, kelangan ko ng mp3 player.


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Nabawasan yata ang timbang ko, yun sabi ng tita ko. Yung isang friend ko naman ang sabi, mukhang bangag daw ako palagi sa mga pics ko. syet!


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Kinakabahan ako sa deadline ko!!! November 16. Sana lang matapos ko lahat ng enhancements at unit testing. Yung unang batch ng Test Script umabot ng 45 pages, at may susunod pa dun. Naiiyak na ko. Haha!


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Masakit ang ulo ko. Para akong magkakasakit. Siguro dahil kulang sa tulog, kulang sa kain, wala lang makausap sa opisina (kasi ako lang ang naka-deploy sa kliyente, walang pinoy na makausap), o dahil....


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Ang worry ko, I'll be hitting rock bottom this November. Kaya lahat ng pagtitipid ginagawa ko na. Dalawang araw ko na nilalakad mula MRT station hanggang bahay kapag umuuwi ako para lang makatipid sa pamasahe. Ah basta, kaya ko 'to.



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Kailangan ko ng Time Machine.

Thursday, 8 November 2007

TV Links Signing Off

Gloucestershire police have confirmed that a 26-year-old Cheltenham man at the centre of an investigation into the website TV-Links was arrested under section 92 of the Trade Mark Act, on suspicion of supplying property with a registered trademark, without permission.


read full article here.


So this explains why I can't access the site for weeks! Is linking illegal?

Tuesday, 6 November 2007

My SG Random Facts


I've been here for three months now, and so far here are some of what I discovered:
  1. Tampines got its name from the word tempinis, a tree that once grew abundantly in the area. Tempinis means ironwood. Tampines is the largest residential area in the city-state.

  2. Sengkang means “prosperous harbour”.

  3. Hougang means “river end”.

  4. Kopi Tiam is a breakfast and coffee shop.

  5. Hawker or Hawker Centre is their version of the pinoy “karinderya” or eatery.

  6. I noticed that for every hawker centre, there is only one stall that sells drinks.

  7. Pinoys here loves to eat Chicken Rice....count me in.

  8. Take away means “For Take Out”.

  9. Having here means “For Dine”.

  10. “-la” is always present in every sentence when the locals are speaking. (i.e. Yeah, la! Take away, la!)

  1. Can? Can!

  2. A number scheme is used to determine buses. For example, route of Bus 72 is from Yio Chu Kang to Tampines and back. (I wonder if the buses in EDSA can adapt this scheme. :D )

  3. The first time I experienced to ride a double decker bus.

  4. Right hand driving.

  5. They follow british english in spelling words. (i.e. Organise, organisation)

  6. No gravy in fast food chains.

  7. No bubble gum.

  8. Cigarette smoking is discouraged. Pictures of diseases caused by smoking is printed in every cigarrete packs.

  9. If you are not in a hurry, you must keep left in the escalator. The right side is for people who are in a rush.

  10. They use smart cards in riding buses and MRTs for a cashless, no hassle trip.

  11. Favorite pinoy hangout? Lucky Plaza!!! Crowded during weekends. This is where pinoy products are being sold, SIM cards/E-loading stations, remittance centers, and Pinoy pubs.

  12. Uncle and Auntie are your "Manong" and "Manang" respectively.

I'll try to add more soon.

Sunday, 4 November 2007

LSS: Start of Something New

Music from the Disney Channel Original Movie, Highschool Musical starring Zac Efron as Troy Bolton and Vanessa Anne Hudgens as Gabriella Montez. (IMDB Info)


This is one of my favorite songs from the soundtrack, including "What I've Been Looking For", "We're All In This Together" and "When There Was Me And You". Kind of 'jologs' kasi hindi na ako highschool pero...Walang kokontra. lol. Enjoy the video!



Living in my own world
Didn't understand
That anything can happen
When you take a chance
I never believed in
What I couldn't see
I never opened my heart yeah!!
To all the possibilities
I know that something has changed
Never felt this way
And right here tonight

This could be the start
Of something new
It feels so right
To be here with you
And now looking in your eyes
I feel in my heart
The start of something new

Now who'd of ever thought that
We'd both be here tonight
And the world looks so much brighter
With you by my side
I know that something has changed
Never felt this way
I know it for real

This could be the start
Of something new
It feels so right
To be here with you
And now looking in your eyes
I feel in my heart
The start of something new

I never knew that it could happen
Till it happened to me
I didn't know it before
But now it's easy to see

It's a start
Of something new
It feels so right
To be here with you
And now looking in your eyes
I feel in my heart

That it's the start
Of something new
It feels so right
To be here with you
And now looking in your eyes
I feel in my heart
The start of something new
Start of something new


Youtube video courtesy of cutefluff.

Thursday, 1 November 2007

The Long String of Patience Broke

Note: What you are about to read is just the tip of the ice berg.


Carrying my laptop and a travel bag, I was rushing to the bus stop in the middle of the night. Sweat falling down my face, catching my breath as my heart pumps ceaselessly, there's anger burning inside me.


I had a quarell with the alleged antagonist of the house. I now baptize him with a new name, Freakazoid.


He was accusing me of “spying” on his personal life, particularly his alleged residence in Quezon City, Philippines.


(Dinner time. In the kitchen, Eben took his second helping of rice from the rice cooker, Freakazoid was busy making his fruit shake)

Freakazoid: Pare anong meron sa Quezon City?

Eben: Huh?

Freakazoid: Narinig kita sabi mo Quezon City...

(Eben went to the living room, ignoring the nonsense blabbering)


I ignored him, because I honestly don't know what he's trying to insinuate. And what's the big deal about Quezon City in the first place?


After dinner, while I was sitting on the couch, my brother and I were exchanging chat messages, we were talking about DotA and I was jotting down some notes on how to effectively use Rhasta as my new found Hero. When suddenly, Freakazoid came out of the kitchen, spilling these lines from a distance:


Freakazoid: Pare yung sinasabi mong Quezon City, may bahay kami dun sa kamag-anak ko...

(He went back to the kitchen, now talking with our guest housemate who's washing the dishes)


Then I heard him saying, “...nag-iispiya sa personal life ko....”.


He's now getting in to my nerves, I changed my Yahoo! Messenger status to “napupuno na ko”. This draw attention to some of my online friends especially officemates. They know what I'm trying to say, and so I told them that something's not right in the house as of the moment.


Still, I let it pass, because I don't want to make “patol” on some nonsense jibberish. I took a deep breath, and I told to myself, “Isa na lang”.


He went out of the house, carrying his bag and two tennis rackets. It's now past 9 in the evening. This time I know something's troubling Freakazoid again. And any moment, the talks that we had before, will be repeated once again, but this time, I am the accused.


I received an sms from him, he was waiting for me on the building grounds and he wanted to talk to me. This time I told my other housemates that no matter what happens to me, they are my witnesses. And so getting my keys, I unlock the main door and took the stairs going down to the ground floor. There he was, standing, a tennis racket in his right hand and a green ball on the left, waving at me as if ready for a rally.


(Eben approached Freakazoid)

Freakazoid: Pare ano ba problema? (with the conio accent)

Eben: Ano na naman ba pag-uusapan natin?

Freakazoid: Kaya nga tinatanong kita kung may problema ka ba sa akin eh?

Eben: Wala akong pakielam kung may bahay kayo sa Quezon City, at wala rin ako pakielam sa personal mong buhay

Freakazoid: Teka wag kang defensive pare. Tinatanong kita, kung wala, eh di wala (playing with his tennis racket)

Eben: Next time wag mo 'ko uumpisahan ng mga nonsense bullshit talks mo! (voice rising)

Freakazoid: Nonsense? Bakit matalino ka ba? (He is pointing his tennis racket on my face)

Freakazoid: How many times ko sinabi sayo na invite me kapag kumakain kayo (seriously this made me laugh)

Eben: Di ba nasalubong ka namin dito sa baba kanina, sabi mo kakain ka na sa labas, ibig sabihin kumain ka na eh. Bakit pa kita yayayain?

Freakazoid: (Ignoring me, playing with his tennis racket) Nung Sunday ka pa ganyan eh, bakit ka nagpapapasok ng ibang tao sa room?


***FLASHBACK***

Two days ago, my pinay colleagues and I had another badminton session, and after an intensive fat burning game, we decided to call it a day and returned to the house to have some rest before taking a hot shower. I let them in our room, since they just wanted to cool down a little bit while the aircon is on. They were sitting on my bed, and we were having a chat. Then suddenly came Freakazoid, he was greeted by my pinay colleagues but he just responded blandly, as if he is not in any way happy with what he just saw after entering the premises. When my colleagues left the room, Freakazoid said, “Pare next time wag naman tayo magpapasok dito sa room, lalo na yung mga chismosa...”. I replied but obviously I am not happy with what I've heard, “Oo sige next time”.
***END OF FLASHBACK***


Eben: Nag-uusap lang kami, at isa pa, may karapatan ako sa room na yun dahil nagbabayad ako at hindi naman nila pinapakielaman ang gamit mo, dun sila nakaupo sa kama ko.

Freakazoid: (Not looking at me) I don't care...nakalagay sa contract of tenancy lima lang (ang nakatira sa bahay)

Eben: (WTF???? Anong konek?) Alam mo wala namang patutunguhan 'tong pag-uusap na 'to. Nahihirapan na ako makisama, ang hirap mo pakisamahan, magpapalipat na ako. Ayoko na.



Then I went back to the house, leaving the speechless Freakazoid and his tennis racket. I phoned my “Nanay” (our Resource Specialist) and I told her that it is a must that I can speak to her personally. She knew what I'm up to, and she told me to spend the night at her house in Sengkang. So I packed my things, grabbed some clothes, shoes, and other necessities. I told my other housemates that it is necessary for me to leave the house for a while because it's not “healthy” anymore. I can't stand to share a room with a psycho. I am always the one whose catching all the crap that comes out of Freakazoid's mouth, and it has to stop.


I was waiting for the bus, sitting on the bench, thinking. I was trying to justify my actions. Am I doing the right thing? After three months, my long string of patience broke. It's as if I've had enough of all these negative vibes around me, adding stress from what I'm getting at work and other personal stuffs, that I badly needed an escape, to relax, to breathe and once again rejuvinate.


From Tampines Central, I took Bus 72 and after 20 minutes I reached Hougang. The bus aircon helped me cool down a little bit. I dropped off at Hougang Central, few minutes has passed and there came “Nanay” and my “Uncle” (my dearest friend). I told them what happened. “Nanay” said that I need not worry, and that I can stay at her place for the meantime.


And so here I am, writing this entry at “Nanay”'s house here in Sengkang, this is my third night. I just want to let Freakazoid realize that of all the Tampines housemates, I was the only one who remained calm and patient and understanding for the longest time. He broke the last line of communication that bridges the gap between him and the other housemates. Somehow, I pity him. Nobody wanted to talk to him. I remember the first time we talked, I was thinking how he might have spent his childhood, was it happy? On how his mind functions, what's troubling him? On what brought him to be the kind of person he his right now, I wanted to understand. But I gave up.


These weekend, I need to go back to Tampines, I have to do the laundry! Haha. But seriously, my other housemates was planning to have another forum. I'm still hoping for the better, I still have nine months to endure...



By the way, Freakazoid is 28 years old, making him 4 years older than me.

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

Sa Iskinita


May iskinita malapit sa aming opisina
Na ang makikita'y hindi basta-basta
Nakahimpil ay isang sasakyang panlupa
Na tunay namang napakagara

Walang pagaatubiling aking kinuha
Larawan nito, bunsod ng pagkamangha
Subali't ang modelo'y hindi ko tanda
Baka alam ninyo? Parang awa niyo na.

Sunday, 21 October 2007

Loaded Weekend

Saturday - Munggo, DotA, Badminton, Zombies

And so i miss eating ginisang munggo. Thank God my mom's friend went here for a vacation, and so the munggo found its way from the pearl of the orient to the lion city, (pinaki suyo na lang na dalhin yung munggo at ibigay sa akin). Added some chicken, leaves that I am not sure what kind, and some thinly sliced bitter gourd, my craving for ginisang munggo is finally served!

In the afternoon, we played DotA. Not yet a pro not yet a newbie or as we call it in tagalog, "bano". According to my house mates it's not difficult to master, maybe it has something to do with my learning curve.

For a change, since no one in the house seems to be interested for some fat burning activity, I invited one of my pinay colleague to come over and play badminton at a nearby court. But it seems like the badminton session turned into a "chikahan session". Haha. Though we managed to complete 2 rallies of alternating A-B-C's. We are planning to do it again next week, but this time less talk and more action.

Night time, it's movie night! Since watching movies at a cinema would mean slashing 10 dollars from our pockets, we decided to do it at home, thanks to torrent. It's 28 Weeks Later, the same old story about zombies multiplying rapidly and man's quest to terminate the undead. The funny thing about me when watching horror and gore, is that I would cover my ears instead of my eyes during those nerve cracking scenes. Stupid me.


Sunday - Job Fair


A job fair was held at the Exhibition Hall 404 of Suntec City and Convention Center . It was hosted by Job Central. Many private companies and Singapore government agencies participated in the event as job hunters both local and foreign seek for employment, submitting their resumes, signing online forms, and collecting freebies (oh yeah!). I am quite surprised to see booths of government agencies in a job fair because in the Philippines I never encountered a booth for PNP or NBI or Department of Finance or even the Malacanang recruiting fellow filipinos. People working at the Singapore Government, especially those under the Singapore Police Force, are very snappy looking in their dark blue uniforms. They even have a booth for those who are interested to guard the prison cells of Changi!

Meanwhile, in our company's booth, I participated in the handling out of flyers, talking to some job seekers, mostly filipinos and indians. I think 70 to 80 percent of submitted resumes are from filipinos who just came here to seek employment, leaving their loved ones back home to look for a better source of income. Some of them have been staying here for as long as two months looking for a job, but still no luck. One of them, even begged ("nagmamakaawa"), for today was her last day of staying here and that she needs to return to the Philippines asap or suffer the consequences of overstaying. I just realized how blessed I am, and now I value my work more than ever.

On a lighter note, let me write this down in tagalog. Marami din anaps na nag-apply. At sa sobrang dami nila, pagnagsama-sama sila, sobrang lakas ng pwersa! Kahit lumayo na ako, gumuguhit pa rin sa lalamunan yung amoy na nasinghot ko. Ika nga sa Ghost Fighter, ang isangdaang porsyento ni Toguro. Haha.

After the event, we managed to collect some 270+ resumes and application forms, excluding the online sign up. Unfortunately, when the screening process begins, half of these will just be shelved for future references. Reality bites.

The next Job Fair, according to Job Central will be August next year. Somehow I have this guilt because I wasn't able to inform my friends in the Philippines about this event...eh di sana nakapaghanap din sila ng work dito, ang problema nga lang is yung pamasahe nila.

For a full list of participating exhibitors, click here.

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Youtube Unveils Anti-piracy Protection

from igma.tv

"Online video leader YouTube on Monday rolled out long-awaited technology to automatically remove copyrighted clips, hoping to placate movie and television studios fed up with the Web site's persistent piracy problems."

read full article>>



Sad. I think my Vixy article is useless. Much worse, Vixy IS useless. Anyway, masama naman talaga ang piracy eh *spoken without conviction* lol

Sunday, 14 October 2007

Heypi Bertday Housemate!

Today, one of my house mate celebrated his 24th birthday. A few days ago, he was planning to set a lunch party in our humbled flat and he wanted to invite our pinoy colleagues, but his main concern was his tight budget. And so to show my camaraderie(“pakikisama”), I volunteered to do the “marketing” for him(“pamamalengke”) and ultimately, to do the cooking. Yes, it's Eben to the rescue.


Asking for his suggestions, we agreed upon the following:


The Menu

Pancit

Spaghetti

Bread Rolls

Adobo


The Budget

Originally set to S$50 (about PHP 1,500).


The Preparation and Cooking

Saturday morning, my other house mate accompanied me to the nearby market to buy the stuffs that we'll be using for the next day's event. We bought some vegetable, meat, spices, etc. Unfortunately, even if we bought the cheapest ingredients, we failed to remain at the S$50 budget margin, and we had to allot an additional S$30 to cover all other expenses. This includes the aluminum trays, paper plates, plastic spoons, forks and cups.


Saturday afternoon, I was preparing the bread rolls. The recipe is easy actually. Flatten the tasty bread, put some slices of chicken franks and cheese, roll it, dip it in egg wash, and dip it in bread crumbs (the one that's used in making tempura, the katakana in the packaging says, “Friers”). I did this to save time for the next day, since this spaghetti-compatible finger food took plenty of time to prepare but lesser time to cook.


I also prepared the chicken for the pancit, two chicken thighs boiled until tender.


Chopped some garlic, onions, red bell pepper, baguio beans, cabbage, carrots, and kintsay. I also prepared the meat for the adobo by slicing it into chunks.


Sunday morning, first to cook was the pancit. I had a hard time mixing all the ingredients together because the “kawali” (like a wok) that I'm using is a bit small, but still I managed to cook all 1 kilo of bihon and canton. I added some deep-fried fish balls, too. (yummy!)


Through the help of my other house mate, I let him fry the bread rolls which I have prepared yesterday.


With regards to the adobo, the birthday celebrant's girlfriend did the cooking, but still with my assistance and supervision (how 'bout that? haha). We just let the meat boil in garlic and soy sauce, waited until tender, then added some potatoes, and garnished with sliced boiled eggs.


Spaghetti was cooked last. I'm a Filipino and we make spaghetti the Filipino way. Yeah, with hotdogs and a little bit of sweetness. Hehe. I Just mixed some fresh tomatoes, tomato sauce and tomato paste, let it simmer, and the sauce is ready!


The Party

People started coming in at around eleven in the morning. Some brought their laptops with them (to play Warcraft and copy some downloaded movies and mp3s!), a colleague was watching her favorite koreanovelas, I on the other hand was playing O2 Jam, and then later on had a poker session with the others.


We also had some soda, cakes (4 birthday cakes mind you), and non stop booze.


However, I over estimated the quantity of food to serve and so we had leftovers. On a positive note, this is a good thing for we don't have to buy breakfast, lunch, and even dinner for the next day. Haha.


Seriously, this is my first time to cook for fifteen heads. I was so relieved that everybody seems satisfied with what they had devoured. (I hope).


I'm kind of tired right now but at the same time proud of myself for this accomplishment, well if that's the proper word to call it. My bed is calling me but I still need to press some of my clothes for this week. Today I wore a toque, tomorrow I will need to wear my thinking cap again. Oh yes, another week of brain cells exercise. U_U


On to the next birthday party!

Friday, 12 October 2007

Introducing Vixy: The Online FLV Converter

Watching streaming video is what some of us do whenever we surf the net, and there's no better place to watch our favorite videos than the ever popular Youtube.


But have you ever felt the need to save your favorite videos direct to your PC, mobile phone or iPod?


I found this very useful online service that converts FLV files (Flash video) into several media file types. Introducing vixy.net, an online FLV Converter that converts FLV files from video streaming sites, such as Youtube, into several media file types like AVI for Windows, MOV for Mac, MP4 for iPod, 3GP for Mobile, and even MP3 to extract the audio. I've been using this site for quite some time now, and so far so good. Here's a brief information about vixy:


This service allows you convert a Flash Video / FLV file (YouTube's videos,etc) to MPEG4 (AVI/MOV/MP4/MP3/3GP) file online. It is using a compressed domain transcoder technology (outline in Japanese). It converts FLV to MPEG4 faster and less lossy than a typical transcoder.

When you submit an url, it will download and convert to the video format. Then you can download the converted file.

FLV to MPEG4 Conveter engine is now OpenSource. You can download the source code via subversion: http://sourceforge.net/svn/?group_id=183657


Too technical? Nevermind, what's important is that you know how to copy and paste the URL (in Youtube, you will see this on the right side of the screen just above the Embed textbox) of the video you want to convert, then select the file type of your choice, hit the Start button, and vixy will do the rest for you. Just dont forget to save the converted file to your hard drive.


As for me, I tried using vixy to download live performances of Regine Velasquez in her Twenty concert and Evanescence AOL Sessions, both in mp3 format. And also, the Final Fantasy Concert in AVI format. I haven't tried using it to convert video's from other websites though(i.e. Veoh, TV Links, etc), so I might as well give it a try.


Just some reminders, vixy cannot convert the FLV file if Youtube is down or under maintenance, also, the conversion speed varies depending on how fast your internet connection is.


So what are you waiting for? Christmas? Try it now!


Related links:


Disclamer: I am in no way paid by vixy to post an article about their service (how i wish.hehe)

Wednesday, 10 October 2007

LSS: Good Enough by Evanescence

From their latest album, The Open Door. I just can't get enough of this song! Been playing this over and over even in the office, haha. The video is awesome too, and Amy Lee's voice is just...ethereal. Such a beautiful ballad.

Other favorite tracks:
- Lithium
- Lacrymosa



Lyrics:


Under your spell again
I can't say no to you
crave my heart and its bleeding in your hand
I can't say no to you

Shouldn't have let you torture me so sweetly
now I can't let go of this dream
I can't breathe but I feel

Good enough
I feel good enough for you

Drink up sweet decadence
I can't say no to you
and I've completely lost myself and I don't mind
I can't say no to you

Shouldn't have let you conquer me completely
now I can't let go of this dream
can't believe that I feel

Good enough
I feel good enough
its been such a long time coming, but I feel good

and I'm still waiting for the rain to fall
pour real life down on me
cause I can't hold on to anything this good
enough
am I good enough
for you to love me too?

so take care what you ask of me
cause I can't say no



For the first time, a happy song for Amy Lee.

thanks to evanescencevideo of Youtube

Tuesday, 9 October 2007

Good work!

Masarap talaga sa pakiramdam pag alam mong nasisiyahan ang boss mo sa ipinapakita mong kasipagan.

Kapag pinapalakas niya ang loob mo kapag nakikita niyang medyo nahihirapan ka na.

Kapag nauunawaan niya ang mga kahinaan mo at tinutulungan ka niyang mapagtagumpayan ito.

Ang marinig ang mga salitang "Good work", "I appreciate your effort" at "thanks a lot!", talagang masarap sa pakiramdam.

Mas gaganahan ka magtrabaho. :)

Monday, 1 October 2007

It's draining me

Uncertainties.

Matters to be addressed back home.

An empty pocket.

A room shared with a psycho.

Your nearness.



Recharge, watanuki.

Sunday, 30 September 2007

House warming and the neverending conflict

Saturday, I was invited together with my housemates to attend a house blessing late lunch – early dinner party. We hit the road around 1 'o clock in the afternoon, took a bus then a 45 minute train ride, then dropped off at Admiralty station. Thanks to the travel instructions in StreetDirectory.com, we were able to reach the place quickly. And so we were welcomed by the owner (or should I say the tenant) of the house, an officemate of ours (we work in the same company, but we, the consultants, are deployed somewhere else). Haven't eaten anything for lunch, we dived into the table to take a bite of mouth-watering delicacies, mostly pinoy food, thank God! There's sisig, tokwa't baboy, chicharon, spaghetti, grilled chicken, among others. The food is fantastic.


I dont know, but I didn't eat much. After draining a can of soda, and two glasses of red wine, my stomach was already full. In as much as I wanted to participate in the demolition of that vanilla ice cream, it's like I lost my appetite. I remembered something. That same feeling again. That sudden change of mood. Why...


I was quiet the whole time, until we bid goodbye and regarded our thanks to the hosts of the party.


The first time I set foot on this country, I don't know what to expect. Let alone sharing a house with four people. Having different sets of beliefs, environment and up bringing, some adjustments must be commenced in order to achieve harmony. I told myself that for as long as I keep my nose clean and away from any trouble, I'll be alright. But I guess I'm wrong. This is going to be a real-life Big Brother season that would run for over a year.


Conflict, is a disagreement through which the parties involved perceive a threat to their needs, interests or concerns. Cat versus Dog. Israel versus Palestine. Administration versus Opposition. Bush versus Bin Laden. Angels versus Demons.


In our case, it's house mate versus house mates. One versus four.


I don't want to elaborate any further, but the bottom line is that there are some conflicts that can't be resolved in just one sitting like a forum. Backstabbing, below the belt comments, name-calling; these are just a few of what comes after a conflict was triggered. As much as possible, all I wanted was a peaceful stay here. I'm not interested in these kinds of childish games.


That night, the alleged antagonist of the house approached me and asked if we could have a walk, he's got something to say. I said yes. I'm the remaining house mate whom he can talk to since we're sharing the same room.


He is someone who likes to be alone, who had so many personal struggles in recent memory, like death in the family. He acts weird, in my honest opinion, and talks as if he knows everything just because, according to him, he came from a very good environment. An environment of civilized people, again according to him.


It's really hard to talk to a person who wanted to be heard but never interested to listen. For me, that conversation with the alleged antagonist of the house is just a waste of time. I tried to be positive, to at least give him the message that could change the situation, telling him what might be the root of all this misunderstandings and my personal take on this issue, but he keeps on rejecting it. Butting in everytime I wanted to talk. The words became burning lava inside my chest and all I wanted was to throw it all out on his face. LISTEN YOU BASTARD! IT'S MY TIME TO TALK! I'VE GIVEN YOU ENOUGH TIME TO SPEAK TRASH! LISTEN!


“You don't know what I've been through”. He thinks the world is on his shoulder. I reminded him that he should not make any assumptions on how other people take things in their lives. That he's not the only person in this world who suffered from a loss. In short, WAG KANG PAAWA EPEK!


He wanted respect, fairness, acceptance. Again I reminded him that respect is not something that can be imposed, but is earned. He's talking about fairness, but is he fair? Cleanliness in the house is like a basic rule for every human habitat in this planet. He couldn't even flush the toilet after taking a pee. He talks about how disgusting the way other people talks. But isn't it more disgusting to say that people living in Cavite are all drop dead poor? He wants acceptance, but does he really wanted to be accepted? I think not. It's the way he interacts with other people, it's like he wanted to repel anyone whose breaching in his self-contained barrier.


The conversation came into an end. Nothing was resolved. The conversation, or should I say "unidirectional communication" is a waste of time, energy, and saliva. I don't want to talk to that person anymore. Do I deserve this? Definitely NOT.


And so I was writing this blog, it's 3am, just wanted to release the stress brought out by this person. I owe it to blogger! Hehe.


Somebody told me, “well just play neutral”. OK, I'm playing it right now, but I don't know until when? I was thinking that maybe there will come a time when I'll have to choose a side or a faction. Or perhaps, I'll just stick to what I believe in and remain a mediator between the clash.

Monday, 24 September 2007

Lullabaaaaah!!!


Sleepless nights.

Counting sheeps doesn't work anymore.

I don't know why, but recently I'm having difficulties to shutdown my brain and let my physical self lie in slumber. My body want's to rest, but my mind is always occupied, spinning like a restless mechanical gear.

God I need some sleep!


Maybe I should try counting goats...or cows... or pigs...all the animals in Old McDonald's farm...

Inaasam-asam




Nais kong maniwala

Na ang buhay ko'y may pag-asa

May liwanag, may ligaya
Buhay na puno ng saya

Sa kabila ng pait

Lungkot at pasakit
Alaala mo man ay di mawaglit
Nais kong lumimot
Nais kong magbago
Nais kong itama ang mga pagkakamali

Burahin ang marka ng kahapon
Mamuhay sa kasalukuyan
Isara ang pintuan ng nakalipas
Mag bagong bihis
Gaya ng isang bagong silang na sanggol
Tulad ng namumukadkad na bulaklak
Wari'y hamog at simoy ng hangin sa umaga
Katulad ng bukang-liwayway.


ca. 12-oct-2006