Missed opportunity

9 September 2006     •     3 Comments
Tech Things

Sorry to “borrow” your post title, J, but I really can’t think of any. I credited you and gave you link love on that, so don’t sue me! Hehehe.

Anyway, the “missed opportunity” I was referring to is Anton’s Pampanga Culinary Tour this weekend. I have got quite a lot of work on the pipeline (ugh, I hate working during the weekend!), and I also need to help my dad prepare for my entourage’s gown fitting on Sunday. Since it’s not every day relatives and friends get together like that, my dad and I thought that we should have at least prepare food. Kind of like a mini party. Since my mom had a major stroke, it’s been my dad (sometimes me, but really, I’m not much of a cook) who’s been manning the kitchens. I know I gotta start learning cooking on my own (and as Connie said, I have to start practicing that before I get married this November)… I swear, I’m trying hehehe (I’m going to get me that cookbook of hers when it comes out, else I’m going to run out of ink printing her entire blog).

Based on the “itenerary,” the Culinary Tour sounds like fun. I really regret having to text Anton this evening that I couldn’t come (any chance of a third one?). I got to admit that the tour will probably do more damage to my increasing waistline (my wedding’s near, I NEED to diet!), I’d probably get fat enough that I won’t need breast augmentation to make my boobies look fuller hehe (it’s not like I have the money for it too, you know). But the food is not the thing that I’m going to miss the most out—it’s the chit chat part.

I’m not really the type who frequently attends “real life” gatherings of internet people unless it’s an educational-type thing (ie. iBlog Summit), but I’ve noticed lately I’ve been a bit “more active” than usual. Marc and I have actually met up with Abe and Jayvee the past few months more often than we did with our college friends.

Is it really just me or the Philippine blogosphere really is getting more social? Well, I hope it is. And I also hope more bloggers will join in the fun.

So, Jayvee, when’s the next meetup? :P

A night with bloggers

1 September 2006     •     11 Comments
Tech Things

Last night was the Globe Innove-sponsored dinner. And as usual, I was late. If I was rude, Markku was ruder hehe. He got there later than me!

Marc was shy, so he opted to stay at an internet cafe instead of joining us. Seriously though, I think he just didn’t want to get bored. I think blogger talks on Google Adsense and broadband connection bore him.

Anyway, I met quite a lot of fellow nerds there that I’ve been meaning to meet: Connie, Anton, Marc Macalua, Rico, and Jangelo. I wasn’t able to talk to Noemi, but I did smile for her camera hehehe. The Globe guys separated the bloggers into two groups, and since I was late, I joined group 2 (besides, Abe and Jayvee were there, and these two were the only ones I knew before the meet). So I really wasn’t able to meet everyone. Anyway, next time (if there is a next time) hopefully I’ll be able to talk to Kiven, Clair, and Vespinoy.

I really enjoyed talking to Connie (she’s so funny hehehe). Marc looks very much the same as the picture on his blog. Anton kept taking pictures of all of us that I begun to think I was a celebrity (email us a copy of your pics dude!).

It was basically some kind of a focus group discussion with chit-chats and food on the side (I drank a lot of that good mango shake! harharhar). From what I understand, Globe Innove (I just found out last night that it’s pronounced as “eeh-noh-veh”) wanted to get a feel of the blogging community. Research, basically. Then before the bar started to get really noisy with music, the Globe guys presented their services to us.

Their dialup service is actually a bit steep (there are cheaper dialup providers out there), but I think that’s because they seemed to be focusing their efforts on broadband more. Which, I would say, is quite a good deal. I pay around P999 for my ZpDee cable connection of 384kbps, but Globe offers their 512kbps at basically the same price (P995 I think, I can’t remember exactly). Although switching providers is far from my mind right now (I’m very satisfied with my provider’s service), I think Globe might be a good try for others. We made it quite clear to them that sucky customer service could be their downfall, and availability in a lot of areas could help them a lot. The Globe guys seem more than willing to listen and take our suggestions into consideration (heck, they were even taking down notes), so I think it might be safe to say that their service has a promising future :P

And this isn’t just a well-fed Gail (not to mention “happy with the KEWL reversible Globelines jacket” Gail) talking. The fact remains that Globe is taking the time to understand the techno-savvy blogging community. They’re actively making the effort to go beyond the “that’s so 80’s” notion of the internet where spinning logos are cool and uber-metallic buttons are the bomb.

I brought along one of my dad’s backup cameras, but unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get any pics. The seafood pasta was distracting :P Seriously though, I’m really not into the habit of taking pics while in a group thing or party like that. So again, you’ll just have to see the photos from the sites of other bloggers who did take pics:

Noemi | More pics from Noemi | Anton

Everyone seems to have this list of the other bloggers’ views on the meet, no harm in joining in! I am so late at doing this—I’ll whole-heartedly admit that I have shamelessly copied it from Noemi’s blog:

  • Noemi : The Globe-Innove Sponsored Blogger’s Meet at Temple Bar
  • Kiven : Globe-Innove Blogger Meet at Greenbelt 2
  • Bimbo : Globe Innove Blogger Meet
  • Anton : Power Blogger’s Meet and Unfulfilled Expectation
  • Abe : Link Building Strategy (Globe Innove Blogger Meetup)
  • Connie : The Globe Innove meet-up
  • Jangelo : A Missed Opportunity (My Thoughts on the Globe Innove Sponsored Bloggers’ Meetup)
  • Jayvee : Globe Innove Aftermath
  • Marc : Globe’s Blogging Adventure
  • Rico : What Happened at the Innove Blogger Meet?
  • Globe/Innove Bloggers Meetup: A Wasted Opportunity?

Que será, será

29 August 2006     •     1 Comment
Family Stuff

Never in a million years will I consider a career in wedding planning.

Marc will probably tell you otherwise, but really, I am very organized. To the point of sometimes bordering obsessive-compulsive. My desk and my room look like hurricane disaster areas, but when it comes to planning stuff, I like to make sure that every detail is spic and span.

It’s now officially three months before my wedding day (as The Knot kindly reminded me through email), and I’m beginning to realize the stress that comes with planning a wedding. Especially when you keep a hectic schedule like mine.

It seems only like yesterday when my dad was amused with my “excitement” on the wedding (ie. booking with a caterer as early as February for a November wedding). Now, he’s bugging me to get a move on with my invitations and entourage gowns.

I’m really beginning to feel the pressure. I’m so pressured that I sometimes feel the need to rip my hair out (no, scratch that, I don’t think I’ll have enough money to pay for Manhattan hair transplants hehe). Seriously though. I could already feel the tension building—so many things to do, yet so little things done.

I’m probably just torturing myself with more stress, but really, the fact that I will be Mrs. Marc Villanueva in three month’s time is kinda scary. It’s going to be a whole new shift in the life I’ve been so used to. I’ve always been the “careful” type of person—I would rather eat fish than some weird exotic dish such as fried frog legs—hence, this marriage thing will definitely bring about a big change, and “uncharted waters” that I don’t have contingency plans for.

My grandma and my mom used to sing to me “Que Será, Será everytime I got into this whole “worrying about the future” funk. It doesn’t really “solve” anything per se, but hearing “whatever will be, will be” from the two women who cared about me the most made me feel safe somehow. But as my grandma has been gone for more than two years already and my mom still can’t speak properly because of the major stroke she had last year, I can’t help but wish things were different.

This is one of those instances that I wish my mom could talk.

Bloggers and pinky-blinkies

24 August 2006     •     10 Comments
Tech Things

Hey look, I’m an Apostle of Globe Innove. Since Markku is going (which means, I’ll know somebody there aside from Abe), I’m in as well. Besides, who’d pass up the chance of free food and be called a “high-traffic blogger“? Flattery is one thing, feeding is another. And if you have both, you have one happy blogger :D

Seriously though… I’m really curious what this is all about. I’ll tell you guys as soon as I get answers, I think Globe Innove is serious about this “exclusivity” thing. My dad probably won’t lend me one of his Nikon cameras, so I’ll just bring my trusty old Panasonic one.

It’s interesting to note that more and more local companies are realizing that blogs aren’t just for angsty teenagers blogging about their angsty lives. This Globe Innove thing is definitely a great start, and I do hope more companies get into it too.

I won’t exactly call myself a “professional” blogger (I honestly don’t think Kutitots is near to being a Celebrity Blog)—I like to think of myself as a web designer more—but I like to think of my entries as “following” certain “blog rules.” Call me a blog elitist all you want, but angsty-bright-pink-with-blinkies-and-wrong-grammar blogs really do piss me off. It’s no wonder that some companies here in the Philippines still don’t see blogging as a good way of advertising online.

The common excuse I get (or read) from people with those stuff that annoy me, is, most often than not: “It’s MY blog.” Some even go to the extreme of calling their blogs as “their world.” So ok. Whatever. But you DID put it on the Net… for people to read.

Some will probably just ignore your bad grammar and continue reading, but some won’t. Others will like your pinky-blinkies, but some won’t. There will be people who won’t have a headache reading your yellow-text-on-fuschia-pink-background color scheme, but some won’t. Some will not like these things enough that they will point them out to you. I would think you’d be a total fool if you get mad that they did. You should be flattered that they liked your content enough to ask you to improve these things so they won’t need to stop visiting your site.

If you can’t live with your readers’ criticisms, then I think it would be better for you to not publish anything. Lashing out on people in your blog that “they offended you” by pointing out your bad grammar, annoying pinky-blinkies, or migraine-inducing color scheme won’t do you any good. Your blog will never improve nor evolve. Worse, people will stop visiting and just forget about your site.

When somebody corrects your grammar or points out how unreadable your site is, thank them instead of deleting their comments outright or resetting your database. Try to make an effort to do something about them, and stop making stupid excuses. If you really can’t handle criticism on your work or writing, then I think it might be safe to say that you need some growing up to do. Or better yet, see a shrink.

No, sorry, I won’t tell you guys for whom this entry is for :D

It’s mating season

21 August 2006     •     3 Comments
Family Stuff

I have two male dogs, and one baby girl. But since my family has 13 dogs, we have seven girl dogs all in all. You can just imagine what it’s like here. It’s mating season!

To date, I have certified that we have four of those seven bitches pregnant (well, they ARE called bitches you know… I’m not just being rude here). One has already given birth. I can’t help but scratch my head when thinking about the inevitable “labor season.”

There are three things that I hate the most when this season comes:

  1. My two male dogs, Harry and Choknat, leave my side.
  2. Dog fights.
  3. You see dogs screwing all over the place.

I read somewhere that male dogs are usually more loyal than female ones. That’s kind of true, Sheero (my baby girl… yeah, we named our startup company after her) stays with me whenever she feels like it. But when she’s off hunting (Sheero hunts for cockroaches, lizards, little mice and big rats), I’m left to fend for myself. Although she’d go running back to where I am if something does happen, she’s not attached to my side like the other two. Harry and Choknat have already stationed themselves under my computer desk (this annoys the heck out of Marc actually), and would accompany even all the way to the bathroom when I need to pee (they whine and gripe whenever I needed to do a number two LOL). But when it’s mating season, Sheero and I are left alone in the computer room. Which is too bad, I’m left with one furry rug under my feet.

Dog fights this season can be very annoying. You get to hear growling every night. Kind of like those fighting drunk men in the bars where one guy gets offended because the other can’t keep his eyes off “his” girl’s ass. It’s the same with dogs. They can get into fights with just one look. But that only happens here when it’s mating season.

The thing I hate about dogs screwing all over the place is the fact that I sometimes trip over them. The dogs inside the house are a relatively small specie, so it’s easy not to notice them until it’s too late and you already have your face on the floor. We’re used to seeing dogs having a huge orgy in our living room, but some people aren’t… You can just imagine the look on our guests’ faces. Some are already too shocked when they see the number of dogs inside our house.
Well, at least our dogs only become lewd and horny once every few months. Real people aren’t like that… Some people are lewd and horny every day :P But then, when you really think about it, you get some striking similarities between people and dogs in mating season.

One would be the typical bar fight and a dog fight. Another is throwing loyalty out of the window and screwing somebody else with a “too-too” gone wild. And last is probably one of the things that you’d typically see in extremely deviant societies: sex all over the place. Actually, the societies need not be too deviant to do that… I’ve heard of stories of couples doing it in strange and public places just because they suddenly felt the “urge” and don’t have the money to check in a motel (or maybe they’re just too hot already and had to “release it” anywhere?).

During the time when my late grandma was young, they’d probably be shocked to hear that. Now, when you do hear something like that, “What stupid fools and got themselves caught. Should have just checked-in at a motel.” I’m only twenty-four (hey, it’s still rare that a girl admits her real age!), and yet, I can’t help but notice how morals change in our society.

I remember having this same discussion with one of sponsors on our wedding. He was telling me that “tomboys” in private schools are no longer “just tomboys,” most of them are already practicing lesbians. A girl’s private school have already added a clause in their set of rules that anyone caught in PDA (Public Display of Affection) will be dealt with severely. And to think I went to that very same school a few years ago. That kind of thing would have been scandalous.

Now, I can’t imagine the society that my future kid will be into. I’ll be getting married in three months’ time (omg it’s getting near!), and this is one of the thoughts that entered into our minds. I’ve been brought up well by my parents (well, at least I like to think so), and I would like to do the same for the kid Marc and I will have. But seeing the society now and how morals seem to be “mutating,” we’re facing one hell of a challenge.

Let’s just hope that our society won’t evolve into something like a dogs’ mating season… I wouldn’t know what to do (at least for now, I wouldn’t).

“Gift from God”

15 August 2006     •     12 Comments
Family Stuff

Now, I’m REALLY beginning to feel Marc and I are accomplishing wedding requirements. We’re almost through with the Church requirements, can you believe that (I know I can’t). We finally got through the pre-Cana seminar, and up until now I’m still scratching my head in confusion over it.

The main reason Marc and I have only gotten to attending this seminar just now was primary because of sleepiness. Marc’s in the night shift, and I work best in the evenings (so technically, I was in the night shift too). The seminar starts at 10am, and you really can’t blame us for doubting our bodies to stay awake an entire day without any sleep. And when I think of pre-Cana seminar, I think of religious people with Powerpoint presentations on a projector screen droning on and on about what-is and what-not’s of marriage. Blame it on my tertiary education. I went to a Jesuit-run university, so it’s really not that far out to think of religious stuff in such an academic setting.

Marc and I argued who would sleep first on the earlier parts of the seminar (yeah I know, we’re evil). One of us had to be awake, you know. Just like in a classroom… Anyway, we got there at the Parish a few minutes after 10am (we’re evil AND we’re rude, we’re going straight to hell). We filled up some forms and waited for the priest to arrive, which is kind of annoying since we worried about getting late for nothing hehehe.

When the priest did arrive, we noticed that there was only one other couple with us (so much for sleeping through the thing). Which is strange… Why would you waste electricity on setting up a projector for ONLY two couples?

Duh. Because it wouldn’t be needed. The “seminar” doesn’t even come close to being a seminar (not even “counselling” for crying out loud), it was more like… CONSULTATION. And a really quick one at that. The priest just gave us bullet points of what should have been a paragraph each. His message was simple, really:

“Sex is a gift from God to married couples. Experiment! Don’t give your partner a reason to leave you.”

Ok… And then he became more specific:

“If your wife/husband wants oral sex, give it to her/him.”

Very short, but very concise. He went STRAIGHT to the point (and I thought I was lazy hehe). But you got to admit, this priest isn’t someone you’d forget in a jiffy. You won’t forget what he SAID in a jiffy.

Now that’s what I call a “unique” pre-wedding seminar! I wouldn’t have slept through it even if I tried.

So boys and girls… Remember, when you get married… Sex is a gift from God to married people, so EXPERIMENT! :D

Busy bee and Daddy’s birthday

4 August 2006     •     2 Comments
Family Stuff

I’ve been as busy as a bee again the past few days. I had to take care of some invitation orders and SheeroMedia projects, not to mention completing wedding requirements. Marc and I have FINALLY completed step 1 of the Church requirements, by the way :) Now we’ll just have to haul our asses to the required seminar. Ugh. I can’t wait to get this stuff done. Really, it’s more fun planning little details like caterers and all that than filing marriage certificates and getting documents. Whoever said marriage isn’t easy wasn’t kidding! Oh wait, I think that one meant being married, not GETTING married. Nonetheless, it’s the same :P Both aren’t easy!

Yesterday was Daddy’s birthday. Happy birthday, Daddy! We had work to do, so my sister and I just bought Dad a Peking Duck from our invitations earnings. Well, we didn’t TECHNICALLY buy it, Dad was the one who went to the restaurant (we got the Peking Duck from Chinatown’s Best Food in Banawe… A bit pricey, but really good), we just paid for it. I think Dad really deserved this treat. We’ve gone through a lot over the past few years, and he went through crap more than any of us. We even got to the point that we considered selling our property (there are actually pretty good reads on renting or buying property up at La Jolla real estate, you might want to take a look if you’re considering renting or buying property), but thank goodness we got through that.

Ah well :P It’s the thought that counts right? Anyway, as soon as we’re not too busy with work anymore, we’ll have a late celebration at a restaurant with Lola Polly.

Work can such be a hindrance to eating out :P

Lady in the water; Wedding update!

28 July 2006     •     6 Comments
Daily Dose

It would done more good if she had just stayed in the water.

Yeah. I didn’t like it. The story is a bit lame, and I might even be doing you a favor by spoiling it. This movie seems like an outpost of M.Night Shyamalan’s ego. I mean hello. The story is about a sea nymph “awakening” the creative drive of a writer who was destined to change the world with his book. Guess who was playing the writer? You got that right: Shyamalan. Of all the roles he could have played in the movie… Ah well. How vain is that!

I don’t really see the point of the movie. It’s basically just this group of people in an apartment complex helping the nymph get back to her world. That’s it. Nothing more.

What a waste. The only nice thing I could probably say about that movie is that Bryce Dallas Howard has nice nose (if I had money, I’d get Toronto rhinoplasty so I can have a nose like her! hehe). Yeah, the movie was that bad. Marc and I might have done better if we just saw “Sukob,” at least that one would have been a laugh. Yeah I know it’s supposed to be horror flick, but Kris Aquino’s there and I think she’s irritatingly funny (she makes horror funny). Besides, it’s a wedding-related flick. It might even teach me and Marc a thing or two (yeah, RIGHT. Hehehe).

And speaking of weddings…

Marc and I have completed HALF of Church Requirements step 1. We’ve acquired our baptismal certificates already, and will just need to get the confirmation certificates. I know, I know, we’re still a long way to go. But hey, at least there’s SOMETHING. Anyway, if we haven’t seen this on my email, we’re probably still slacking off:

Oh my. Still a lot to do!!!

I know this site meant no harm, and was probably intended from brides and grooms excited about their weddings… But man, seeing this freaked me out! Just goes to show how many stuff we still need to do. Getting married sure is a LOT of work :P

So by now I should be personalizing my wedding details. Personalizing? It’s not even complete yet. Damn! My wedding gown is still non-existent (heck, even the attire for my entourage doesn’t exist yet), and our wedding rings are still fragments of our imagination. Ah well :P I guess Marc and I will always be buzzer-beaters hehehe.

“Greening” my computer room

19 July 2006     •     5 Comments
Daily Dose

Hey cool. I’ve actually had time to blog in two consecutive days! :)

I’ve been meaning to write some kind of a review for Superman Returns or Pirates of the Carribean, but I’ve seen so many posts wondering how in the world the Man of STEEL screwed Lois Lane (oh, that’s a spoiler hehe) and how utterly repressed Elizabeth was in Pirates, that I decided I didn’t want to jump in the bandwagon and just abandoned the idea. So there. I’m just going to talk about my new plant.

Without Marc knowing (he only found out AFTER I bought it hehe), I got me a cute bamboo plant. A real, live one.

My bamboo plant

Between you and me, I think the main reason why I bought this was because of the water gel’s color. I really, really liked the color, and thought it could liven up my computer work area. Marc wasn’t too happy about my purchase, for the simple reason that I’ll eventually kill it. Ah, well. Time will tell. When it dies, he’ll be the first to know. Besides, it WILL eventually die, you know. The plant will probably just die before it’s expected life span, but who knows? I might have gotten a bit of my late grandma’s talent for gardening (eventhough this thing can probably live without me intervening too much).

I remember that the only plant I’ve managed to sustain for some time was a monggo plant… And I didn’t even mean for it to live, it was really an accident. I bought some monggo seeds for a school art project, and left the extras on my desk. I must have spilled water on them or something, because the next thing I knew, there was a greeny growth on my desk near the window. Since it was alive anyway, I just watered it when I had the chance (well, monggo plants are kind of low maintainance, aren’t they?).

I haven’t really had the best of luck maintaining live stuff on my desk… I was so bad, I even killed my colony of sea monkeys (what are those friggin’ things, anyway?) I bought from HongKong with grandma. Well…. Let’s hope for the best for my bamboo plant, shall we?

Anybody out there who knows how to take care of a bamboo plant? Tips will be much appreciated.

I think I’ve been so happy having plants in my work area that I let mushrooms grow on the edge of my door hehe.

Gail's squatter mushrooms view 1

Are these poisonous? I took their picture first (they looked pretty, honestly) before removing them. I didn’t want to risk having my dogs make a snack out of them, so they’re gone now. Here’s another one:

Gail's squatter mushrooms view 2

Don’t ask me how they got there… I don’t know how. Probably because the door’s edge gets wet frequently? Oh, well. I think I’ll be seeing a lot of these during this rainy season.

Bloggers’ dinner aftermath

18 July 2006     •     7 Comments
Tech Things

Marc, Arelle and I went to the bloggers’ dinner Jayvee organized last weekend at Italianni’s in Greenbelt, Makati. Luckily, we had a meeting at Oody’s before it… And I do mean LUCKY. Damn, Italianni’s is EXPENSIVE. The food there is damn expensive that you’d think it was made of platinum (ok, I’m exaggerating… and yeah, maybe I am a bit stingy hehe). Well, anyway, it was more on the chitchat we were after so what the heck.

The bloggers

The people who attended the dinner were the ones looking at the camera. Jeez, my hon really doesn’t like smiling at cameras :P Oh, and yeah… The guy wearing an orange long-sleeved shirt in the foreground wasn’t with us… I think he was just ordering.

Me and Marc!

Abe took this pic. I just HAD to repost because he was so proud of it. Hehe. This photo was one of the “products” of Markku‘s photography tutorial for Abe. I have to admit, it is a good shot :)

These two were shamelessly stolen from Abe‘s site. We asked him to put our pics up there for us to steal. Hehe. Anyway, if you’d like to see more, just take a look at Abe’s gallery.

I’m really not the type who goes to EB’s (eye-ball) like this one, especially when Abe was the only one we knew personally, but I got to admit I was curious about the people behind the blogs. Besides, I’m going to have this WordPress “project” with Markku, and I wanted to meet him first so we could discuss the details (hush, it’s a surprise hehe).

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