Friday, August 29, 2014

Going Down

I'm now becoming a lazy blogger. I blame not having a laptop for this wherein I can just type away my thoughts on the whim. 

So what do we have lately? Traffic is really bad here in the metro. I was born with traffic being bad and currently experience it to being awful. Let's see a few more years from now when it notches the "unbearable" status. Can't even bike or have other forms of transportation because the roads are unforgiving and the air is so close to giving us lung cancer. Guess we're just waiting for a miracle to happen or when teleportation is made available now. 

Then the taxes. Check Facebook and your feed has either exploded with the comparison of income taxes of the different nations in Asia or you just ignored it because you have felt so hopeless already you just microwaved something from your parents' refrigerator because you're too functional to cook for yourself. 

Where do our taxes go? They actually go to a lot of places. They are properly and smartly allocated, we can see that in budget reports. Basically, in paper. We can see that in paper. Only in paper. Then the money probably gets lost in translation. A million pesos allocated in paper, gets a quarter of it in reality. The rest just go to blackholes. It's just so funny this is all too common even in high profile politicians - those whose faces you can see everywhere, even in your worst nightmares. What does COA do? I think they're not doing their job or they probably are doing a good job but corporations or dirty politicians threaten the daylight out of them. "Good folks don't last too long" type, I guess. You remember this whenever you go out. The roads are horrible, the traffic is just depressing, the news gives you a wrinkle or two in an instant. 

Oh gosh. There's Manny Pacquiao joining PBA, too. As coach and a player, people! This just proves how ridiculous we are and how much we value freedom. Everyone's free to do everything here, especially if you're a sports icon or a politician, or the kid of a sports icon or a politician. You can be a professional boxer and a professional basketball player here. Oh, plus coach. Don't forget about that. Be a professional thief while you're at it, too.

In a way, our country just killed a huge part of whatever hope I have that we can still do something about our situation and not abandon ship. 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Barber's Tales: Mga Kuwentong Barbero

Barber's Tales (Mga Kuwentong Barbero) is a 2013 film starring Eugene Domingo, written and directed by Jun Lana (of Bwakaw), and is currently enjoying a commercial release just this August 2014. It runs for 2 hours and is being showcased at select cinemas particularly at Ayala Cinemas.

Patriarchal Society, Gender Roles, Politics, and Freedom

It was set during the Martial Law era, so the crew had to be smart and gather memorabilia and props that are well-thought of. There should be no slips of anything modern (just like the more recent Downtown Abbey failed promotional teaser). The film was shot tastefully, it shows how women were treated both in their familial roles and by society, how men look down on women both explicitly and implicitly with hints that no one would have his hair cut by a female barber, and that women should take care and concede to their husbands' needs and desires.
grabbed from
In spite of all the gender role tones, the film showed that women in their own ways (if they want to) can challenge the notion that men and the society have on them. they can fight back their libido-filled husbands, they can prove that they can cut hair as good as their male counterparts, and that they can make a change on their own - whether through a societal or political rebellion.

Eugene Domingo has really established herself on being a very versatile and effective actress. Hands down, she can bring out different emotions and pass them to the audience without difficulty. She is that good and is always a delight to watch whether in a comedy or drama environment.
grabbed from
Barber's Tales is not a comedy. The title might mislead you into thinking it's a funny movie (Mga Kuwentong Barbero - who won't think it's not a comedy??) with Eugene Domingo (yes, Kimmy Dora?) billing it, but it's not. It's an irony. It is a sad story of a compelling truth beautifully told by classic performances of artists and talented filmmakers.

Saturday, August 09, 2014

Sariling Sikap Hakaw - Shrimp Dumplings

Hakaw or shrimp dumpling is an all-time classic favorite by everyone with or without allergies from seafood. What's that on your hand? Anti-histamine?! Drop it, lady!

What is hakaw or shrimp dumplings?
Minced shrimp with other ingredients put in the middle of a wrapper, formed to perfection and then steamed on bamboo for your pleasure.
Best paired with chili garlic.
And lots of steamed rice.

So. My dear friend, Kathy, who believes we should all learn to cook (she says we can start by watching Cooking with Dog in YouTube) has embarked on this journey of making hakaws. Hakaws from scratch. Yes. She wants to make everything herself. I was fine with being the audience but I realized there is audience participation required that is not just taste testing. :( 

Ingredients for Wrapper:
- Tapioca Starch (note that after research, we found out that it's the same as tapioca flour)
- Wheat Flour (if you only found whole wheat flour, your hakaw is going to be brown and that's weird)
- All Purpose Flour (we used this instead because whole wheat flour made our hakaw brown :( duh )
- oil
- sweat salt
Healthy Options is dang expensive.
Go to Ongpin instead!

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Your Own Roasted Tomatoes with Basil Pesto and Mozzarella Cheese

How about Starbucks' Roasted Tomatoes with Basil Pesto and Mozzarella Cheese on Warm Italian Bread? What about it?
One focaccia serving can have 3 slices. Just to fool yourself that you're
eating small pieces but you're really on the way to being fat. Nyuknyuknyuk.
It's the only thing I can eat at Starbucks. Sweet sugary drinks are not real food. They are not real coffee either. They are sweet treats with forgettable espresso. Okay? Anyway, here in the Philippines, the roasted tomatoes with basil pesto bread costs Php115. I love it. I'm poor. I don't love being poor. So what do you do? You try to make your own version of it!

What to do? Prepare basil, dried oregano, mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, blender, and a few garlic, salt, and oil to saute your basil. Saute them and then dump into the blender. Whirrr whirrrrr. Blend blend. Chop chop smash smash kapow! Slice your mom's ciabatta or focaccia then spread lots of pesto on one side. Place sliced tomatoes on top and then murder it with mozzarella cheese. Be generous. The world is your oyster. And theeeeen, offer them inside the oven toaster and then when cheese already melted, "close" your sandwich and there you go!!!!

The only problem here is that when you're in Starbucks, you're contented in buying just one order. However, when you're the one making this one, you'll be eating 2 servings easily. Pair it up with your hand-brewed coffee and then laugh at Starbucks. Or you can forget about the laughing part so people won't think you're crazy. Obese is fine, crazy is not.