Thursday, March 31, 2005
So is it possible to get a workout if you’re not in the gym, not jogging outside or not sweating to a video at home? My answer is a definitive HELL YEAH! Last weekend was proof of that because a bunch of us participated in a group work-out as we helped Cile transform her room from the confused Strawberry Shortcake Shrine/transitional young adult dwelling to a sophisticated budois for the rising artist that she is. The weekend barely grazed STEPS 1, 2 & 3 of many more to come, but man what a transformation already!
When I got there Saturday night, Cile’s room was cleared! I’ve never seen her room so empty. The carpet had been ripped off the floor and thrown into her balcony and, ‘lo and behold, what lay beneath her raggedy old used-to-be mauve carpet? Hardwood floors! Cile and Carlo came back to the house with a rented sander from Home Depot and it was then that the make-over REALLY began!
After the holes on the walls had been filled in and thereafter dusted, and after every single staple and nail on the floor had been agonizingly extracted, the sanding began. Wowie what a difference! That Sunday, after the 2nd coat of primer had settled in, we painted the walls green and haven’t looked back since.
I know Cile entrusted Melissa and Leia with her new bedroom furniture so I can’t wait to see the final results of our collective efforts. Here’s to new ambiance!
Check out our pictures on the link “WEEKEND WARRIORS.”
Tuesday, March 29, 2005
My favorite part of this show isn't the performers. It's my dad trying to get all their names straight and my sister not knowing who the heck is on.
Week 1 elimination:
DAD: Too bad for Casey, huh?
ME: Who's Casey?
DAD: The girl who was eliminated from American Idol.
ME: It's LINDSEY, Dad.
DAD: Ooh Lindsey.
TIN: Who the heck is Lindsey?
DAD: That Tina Turner and Jessica Simpson - they're going home tomorrow.
ME: NADIA Turner and Jessica SIERRA, dad.
So I just told ya’ll that Grey’s Anatomy has been added to my short list of must-see tv shows. I think I’m going to add another one on, HOUSE, M.D. on Fox which airs right after American Idol.
So, ER, Grey’s Anatomy and now House, M.D.? What is it exactly that draws me in to these medical dramas? What fascinates me so? Maybe the reason lies in a childhood vision of adulthood I had, when I thought I’d be wearing a white coat and stethoscope to work everyday. Maybe it’s because I was surrounded by doctors as a little girl. Aunts, uncles, cousins, etc all seemed to either be neck-deep in their medical careers or headed just that way. It’s funny how a 5-year old can go from “I wanna be a doctor when I grow up” to “I wanna be a published writer someday,” 22 years later. What the heck?
Or MAYBE, it’s an opportunity to have a peak at a world that’s foreign to my scope of knowledge; opportunities which I also find in CSI, West Wing and even LOST. All these shows bring me into this alternate universe of my life where I can conjure up the most detailed experiences in my head. I imagine myself in scrubs, running around the emergency room during a trauma; I can see myself giving a few test tubes of DNA a spin in the centrifuge to help nab a serial killer; Oh look! There I am doing a press conference for the POTUS (President Of The United States)…OH MAN I’M ON A DESERTED ISLAND AND THERE’S A STRANGE CREATURE CHASING AFTER ME! hahaha…
Hmmmm…THERE'S a story waiting to be told. I better go write it down…
Monday, March 28, 2005
I have an annotation due tomorrow. It's basically a paper where you analyze a piece through the author's techniques and how these affect the experience he/she is channeling by using said techniques. I haven't written about a poem in 5 years so I've been kinda struggling through it all weekend...and kinda still am, as you can see since I'M BLOGGING!
It's a really cool poem though. I'll share it with you guys when I'm done writing this thing. Our teacher's only asking for 2 paragraphs. Apparently he doesn't know how much I have to say all the time. We'll have to fix that I suppose.
Ok, back to the writing board (Microsoft Word). My sister's downstairs playing video games. She's on spring break. I kinda loathe her right now. =)
Hey, I have a new show to add to my short list of gotta see it programs for the week: Grey's Anatomy. I've only seen the first episode and I know I'm gonna love it already. Have a watch! It's on after Desperate Housewives on Sundays at 10 pm.
Ok for real...gotta go...ANNOTATE!
Friday, March 25, 2005
Dude, it's so quiet in the office. No one's calling in and no one's calling out because apparently every company is closed EXCEPT OURS! Booo...I was hoping that we'd be dismissed early, but we haven't heard from our corporate office so I guess I'm looking at 4 more hours of staring into oblivion contemplating the meaning of life...or thinking of other non-sensical wonderments, like "I wonder how many times I could run up and down the hundred steps at Diamond Head (or Mountain Head according to Ryan) before I collapse and roll off the cliff into the Pacific..."
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
Driving home from Providence High School after picking up my sister at 5:15 pm is sometimes a pain. Even though I can stay in one lane all the way from Burbank to Glendale, there are times when the usual 8 to 10-minute drive turns into 15 or 20 in the midst of rush hour traffic. I know what you’re all thinking, “Gosh Anna, 20 minutes in the car, how sad for you…suck it up!” But when you’ve spent 8 hours calming down rude customers, typing until your wrists are throbbing and wondering every second if life could really get much better than THIS, all you can ask for at the end of the day is a quick drive home so you can forget the madness and revel in the serenity of your home. On most drives, my sister is knocked out in the backseat, my mom is half-asleep in front and I’m behind the wheel with roadrage waiting to curse the first idiot who tries to cut me off. I push the pre-set stations every 3 seconds hoping for ONE or 2 good songs to get me through my drive home. By the way, how can 12 stations be on commercial at the same time?
Monday night, however was a rare exception as the wonderful 93.5 KDAY showcased a mix I appreciated more than anything that day. Boyz II Men singin’ “Motownphilly,” followed by ABC’s “Iesha” and then MC BRAINS closin’ the mix with “Oochie Coochie?” I was ready to hop out of the car and start dancing in the middle of the 134 East! An East Coast Family remix, are you kidding me? We performed a routine to “Iesha” in the 7th grade! You wanna see it? IYA AND I WILL SHOW IT TO YOU! Randy may remember it too. hahaha…
Anyhow, music is a real blessing isn’t it? It can bring about some of our saddest or happiest memories, but can also remind us of seemingly obscure, random moments in our lives. 10 years from now, with my insanely good long-term memory (which makes up for my sorry ass excuse of a short-term memory), I know that when I hear those songs again, I’ll not only remember 7th grade antics, but that moment in the car when one of life’s little snags (i.e. traffic) became just a tiny bit bearable.
Tuesday, March 22, 2005
STACY VEE CONCEPCION DIONISIO aka STACY
Vitals: Met when I was a big bad 4th grader and she was a tiny 3rd grader at wonderful St. Francis of Assisi elementary school = 17 years and counting
Role In My Life: Super Mommy – Stacy calls me “Modder” as in “mother” because I used to call her my daughter when we were younger and I guess I kinda took her under my wing. In actuality, SHE’S the real mom, taking on more than one can imagine for someone so young. She graduated from high school (we have the same alma mater – GOOO IMAC!), then undergrad and soon pharmacy school, all the while raising her daughter, and mine and Iya’s inaanak, Kayla. How does she do it?
Good Times: For SOME reason, which we will always wonder about, Stacy and I used to exchange song lyrics during lunchtime that year that we met. Random songs like Belinda Carlisle’s “Circles in the Sand” or Debbie Gibson and Tiffany tunes. Why the heck?! But one of my favorite memories is the surprise party Stacy, Iya and some of our other friends threw for me at the end of our 7th grade year. It wasn’t for my birthday, but because I won for president for the next school year! I was so suspicious because they were all acting so weird every second after that last day of school trying to keep everything a surprise, and they succeeded because I was shocked! I think the “planning committee” almost got in trouble with Mrs. V, our 7th grade teacher, because the guestlist got all political. Aaaw I’m never gonna forget that!
In her own words: Actually, Stacy’s a lady of very few words. If she’s not sitting there listening and smiling, she’s usually asleep, wherever she is. Borderline narcoleptic, I’m telling you! Especially during movies, no matter what time of the day we watch! There are certain words and phrases though that will wake her up. Words like, “Let’s go shopping!” will almost always do the trick.
Friday, March 18, 2005
Thursday, March 17, 2005
SEEING AND HEARING, BUT NOT BELIEVING
I just finished reading He’s Just Not That Into You: The No-Excuses Truth To Understanding Guys by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo, a writer and consultant from Sex and the City. Thanks to Miss Mac, for bringing this insightful book into my life! I've always believed that everything happens for a reason. Every sound or song I happen to hear, every word or book I happen to read, every person I come into contact with, every occurrence I happen to witness or experience I know has a purpose for some aspect of my life. And having this book placed on my bedside table has been no exception.
I suppose the book is subjective, as most written works tend to be. The message of the authors will either be greatly appreciated, or greatly misunderstood depending on who’s reading it. As a single, 27-year old woman, here’s my take. The clearest theme of the book, obviated by the mere title, screams out “TAKE A HINT LADIES! HE’S NOT INTERESTED IN YOU!” And the pages that follow dissect the excuses from every angle.
I understand what the authors are saying, that sometimes we women are so caught up in the possibilities of love, commitment, etc that we don’t know a dead end when we see it. We strive to find (or concoct) logical explanations for rejection so we have a solid “this is why he doesn’t want to commit to me” reason. But sometimes, it’s NOT a complex question of reason or logic, just simple disinterest, and I guess that’s difficult for us to believe. “He’s not into me, why? Cuz I’m not pretty enough? Not smart enough? Not witty enough?” The number of explanations are infinite, but give me SOMETHING, right?
Joni Mitchell sings a beautiful song called “Both Sides Now,” which creates a metaphor for love in the form of clouds. She talks about how, when we look at clouds, the possibilities of their shapes are endless. One person can see one thing, while someone else sees another. That’s the cunning that clouds provide, its ambiguity. So, I suppose something will appear to be love to the person who WANTS to see love, but it doesn’t always mean that love is there. Interesting…
** By the way, someone not being into you, doesn’t necessarily mean only romantic potentials. That’s what I learned most from this book.
BOTH SIDES NOW
By: Joni Mitchell
Bows and flows of angel hair and ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons everywhere, I've looked at cloud that way.
But now they only block the sun, they rain and snow on everyone.
So many things I would have done but clouds got in my way.
I've looked at clouds from both sides now,
From up and down, and still somehow
It's cloud illusions I recall.
I really don't know clouds at all.
Moons and junes and ferris wheels, the dizzy dancing way you feel
As every fairy tale comes real; I've looked at love that way.
But now it's just another show. You leave 'em laughing when you go
And if you care, don't let them know, don't give yourself away.
I've looked at love from both sides now,
From give and take, and still somehow
It's love's illusions I recall.
I really don't know love at all.
Tears and fears and feeling proud to say I love you right out loud,
Dreams and schemes and circus crowds, I've looked at life that way.
But now old friends are acting strange, they shake their heads,
they say I've changed.
Something's lost but something's gained in living every day.
I've looked at life from both sides now,
From win and lose, and still somehow
It's life's illusions I recall.
I really don't know life at all.
Tuesday, March 15, 2005
Monday, March 14, 2005
TATAY’S FIRST LADY
My grandmother cracks me up…
Actual Conversation in Tagalog:
ME: Hi ‘Nay! Wow! Bagong gupit po ang buhok?
NANAY: Oo, pinagupit ko sa Ninang mo.
ME: Maganda po!
NANAY: Thank you! Pinagaya ko yung buhok ni Laura Bush.
ME: Hi Nanay! Wow, new haircut?
NANAY: Yeah, I had your ninang (my godmother) cut it.
ME: It looks nice!
NANAY: Thank You! I had her model it after Laura Bush.
Sunday, March 13, 2005
Why is it I can blog 350 words with one, uninterrupted train of thought, in one 1-hour sitting? Because no one's gonna grade it that's why! I've been working on this darn piece since Tuesday night and I keep changing everything around cuz it doesn't sound right to me!! AAAARRRRGGGGHHHH! I refuse to call it writer's block. Guess it's one obstacle of many in this profession that I haven't even really begun yet. What have I gotten myself into?...A true exploration (or potential) of my abilities I suppose...hmmm, we'll see...
Thursday, March 10, 2005
Wednesday, March 09, 2005
I started a blog entry yesterday, but then I remembered I had to start an assignment for class, a piece of creative non-fiction, so I decided that I’d just turn that blog entry into homework. Hahaha…It’s my first assignment, due next Tuesday, and I figured that since I rambled on for 300 words (I counted), I’d save myself the stress of trying to figure out what I could write about and just tweak what I have just enough so it’s decent enough to hand in.
What a relief it is to have been given lots of creative freedom. We’re not specified a length or subject, just genre: non-fiction. I appreciate that like you wouldn’t believe! No research? Doesn’t have to be 5-10 pages long? On anything we want to talk about? I’LL DO IT, WHEN’S IT DUE! But the part of me that’s OCD finds this a little hard to deal with. How will I know if I’m rambling on for another 2-3 pages when I could’ve nipped it in the bud 4 pages ago? Guess we’ll see what happens.
Color me weird, but I was really excited to start this assignment. I can’t remember the last time I was EVER excited to do an assignment. And it’s not because I think I’m gonna turn in something that’s gonna blow my teacher away. I’m just really anticipating what he has to say about my work. I haven’t done anything like this since 2000! The last English class I took was “Craft of Fiction” during my 4th year at UCI (with best-selling author Alice Sebold as my instructor, thank you very much!) so I’m excited to see how much my writing has changed in the last 5 years – I HOPE it’s changed! That and I’m waiting to hear “you suck at this why do you wanna be a writer” so I can grow accustomed to the criticism that this career involves. We’ll just have to wait and see I suppose. After I get the paper back, maybe I’ll blog it. hee hee hee…
Monday, March 07, 2005
Random celebrity sighting: I stepped out of the bathroom at the Universal Ampitheater (we watched Lea Salonga’s concert. Dang that lady can sing!) and Rochelle was standing by the concessions stand putting cream and sugar into her coffee. She saw me and started waving all frantically to walk faster.
“Banana banana, come here hurry! Isn’t that the girl from ER? Mulan’s voice? What’s her name?”
Oh man! It was Ming-Na Wen! What the heck? Ming-Na at a Lea Salonga concert. How random is that? A family was talking to her so we waited, and she seemed SO nice and approachable that we decided to tap her on the shoulder to say hello. She chit-chatted with us for a few minutes as Bobbers and I gushed over how much we miss her on ER. She’s pretty petite because we were practically eye-level with her. And she’s so pretty. Can’t believe she’s freakin’ 42 years old!
Ok that’s it. hahaha…that was cool! I don't like walking up and trying to talk to celebrities because sometimes I feel kinda bad for them, and because I'm scared they'll act like asses or bitches and my nice image of them will be shot. Thank goodness she was nice...el fin...
Sunday, March 06, 2005
That’s right people, on Saturday morning and into the afternoon I experienced 4 hours of uninterrupted, genuine glee. My soul was uplifted, my mind was awakened and my heart was a-flutter. I’ve truly fallen in love…with writing. I’m head-over-heels for its freedom, at the same time finding myself engulfed in its intricate techniques. This one’s a keeper, folks, and my only hope is that the feeling is mutual. Allow me to tell you my story…
I went to the UCLA Extension Writer’s Program Open House yesterday. I didn’t even get lost going there! That would’ve been enough to make my day, but blessings, not wanting to be outdone by the light drizzle, continued to pour. I didn’t even have to pay for parking because, as I was waiting in line to enter the garage, a car on its way out pulled over next to me and the driver stepped out to offer me his parking permit for the day. He saved me $7! What a random act of kindness! Allow me to take back what I said about the lack of kindness in strangers. That guy made me eat my words yesterday.
And then as I stood there outside the lot with my map in hand, wondering how the heck I was gonna find my way through this city of a college campus, a girl came up to me. We were going to the same place and I had found my buddy for the day, Dana. My fear of feeling like a loner at such an event had been discarded.
Soon after, the real excitement began. I walked into the lecture hall and sat among a kaleidoscope of people. We all listened as instructors and students alike spoke about their love for this program, and most of all, their love for a craft they’re so passionate about that they wish to share it with others. I can write screens and screens about it, but I won’t bore you with details. All I can say is that I came out of Westwood with a really good feeling inside; like everything, moment by moment, is starting to happen for me and I’m paying close attention. No I’m not a published writer, nor do I have that M.F.A. on my resume…but not bad things to aspire for huh?
I got in my car and I couldn’t, for the life of me, remember what was in my cd player, but then the following song started playing and, well…cut to me groovin’ all the way to Glendale in my Rav. It couldn’t play at a more appropriate moment because I’m ready to come out of hiding. Nothing like true love to test your fear. FINALLY! Someone whose love for me will show in the form I’ll always cherish: words.
by: Swing Out Sister
When explanations make no sense
When every answer's wrong
You're fighting with lost confidence
All expectations gone
The time has come to make or break
Move on, don't hesitate
Don't stop to ask
Now you've found a break to make at last
You've got to find a way say what you want to say
When situations never change
Tomorrow looks unsure
Don't leave your destiny to chance
What are you waiting for?
The time has come to make or break
Some people stop at nothing
If you're searching for something
Lay down the law, shout out for more
Breakout and shout, day in, day out
Friday, March 04, 2005
Friendship is a tricky thing, isn’t it? There are times when you feel like you have to have this person or these people in your life forever and that there’s no way things would be the same without them. And then there are times when you look back at certain relationships and wonder why they ever existed. I’ve been blessed with a great number of friends. Some I’ve known since I got to the states in 1982, some I met during my most awkward adolescent years, others I encountered at a party called “undergraduate studies” and some I’ve barely met in the last few years.
We, me and these friends of mine, have seen each other through almost everything: first (and sometimes second and third) broken hearts, first shot at politics, first jobs, first dates, movie-opening nights, graduations, car accidents, “study breaks,” a loved one’s death, a quarter-life crises – you name it, we’ve probably supported each other through it, all the while managing to live our own lives. But things don’t always remain this way because people change, often growing tired of the same company and the same attitudes, losing interest and tolerance for the seemingly mundane way of life. Where we used to find comfort and peace, we now see uneasiness and discord.
“There is no growth without change.” I’ve heard that said to me over and over again. I’ve always welcomed change, but I realized that it was only under the condition that things change the way I want them too so that I wouldn’t have to be the one who has to grow accustomed to something new. I’m a semi-creature of habit, what can I say? But I understand now that the things we want most to stay the same, are the things most likely to evolve. Friendship is one such thing because they involve the most complex people of all time: us.
It doesn’t matter how long you’ve known someone. The amount of time you’ve spent with one another isn’t the only thing that maintains friendship’s bonds through the years. It’s the amount and direction of growth you experience together, not to mention the love and respect you share for one another, that keep those bonds protected, even through life’s most tumultuous weather. Unfortunately sometimes, even THAT isn’t enough. It’s these times when we realize that not all bonds are unbreakable. Some chains choose to become loosed or unlinked. This is when we have to accept that growing up sometimes cause friends to grow apart. It’s not sad. It’s just reality, so what's the use in fighting it?
Wednesday, March 02, 2005
I just came from taking something to the mailbox downstairs. I walked out of the building to discover it's raining (AGAIN!), onto the non-slip mat and as soon as I stepped off it, I SLIPPED AND FELL ON MY ASS with a big loud THUD! It all happened so fast, but my right leg literally slid and flew into the air and I landed on my left side. Oh man it was painful to get up and walk to the mailbox! There was a guy at the ATM behind me, a young man at the bus stop in front of me, and the security guard inside the building and NO ONE EVEN BLINKED! So much for the kindness of strangers!
Anyhow, my left butt and thigh hurt and so does my left arm. It's bruised as far as I can feel. We'll see how I feel in the morning. DAMN THIS RAIN!!!
Tuesday, March 01, 2005
In two sessions of English 103, I’ve learned that the basis for most, if not all creative writing is experience. We’re asked, as writers, to observe and internalize the world without judgment and preconception in order to produce a piece that, rather than convey information or position, renders experience and emotion. We’re told to create pictures so vivid that the reader is not only TOLD to feel a certain way, but is guided, through specific imagery that appeals to the senses, to experience emotions themselves.
However, there are things called “abstractions” that are difficult to envision, such as love, friendship and deception. Friendship, for example, is a concept that can be exemplified and understood, but can’t be drawn or painted. A group of people laughing in a coffee shop is sign of some sort of platonic relationship, but it’s not friendship in and of itself. Then there’s deception, which can be signaled by a cunning series of lies or signs of guilt, but those are factors of deception, not deception itself.
This class isn’t just about learning how to be a good writer. It’s about observing the world around us through a non-discerning eye. It’s been about finding the extraordinary in the mundane, the exceptional in the ordinary, the potential in the impossible. It’s about understanding the world around us, not as spectators, but as participants.
*You know what can really kill this unbelievable class for me? That's right, Joemama, I've got one of those smart-ass students too! The thing I appreciate most about community college is the varied demographics of each class. I've got classmates who look 18 or 19 years old mixed in with much older people, clearly in their 50's and 60's, and us 20's and 30's members in between. However, sometimes the older generationers feel they know EVERYTHING. There's this lady in our class who's about 50+, talks whenever she has something to say (and sometimes when she has NOTHING to say) and when I walked into class today, she had her BARE FEET propped up on the seat of desk in front of her! GROSS LADY! PUT SOME SHOES ON, THIS AIN'T YO HOUSE! And she sits right next to me so I'm all nastified out! Boo!
This semester, I’m taking English 103: Creative Writing at GCC. It took me 3 tries to get into this dang class! Attempt #1: I tried enrolling on February 1st at 4:00, which was my enrollment window and it wouldn’t let me add the class because there is a freshman English class pre-requisite. I was like, c’mon let me in! I have my bach already! I was asked to fax my UCI transcripts to the academic counselor’s office (weird looking at that thing. Still can’t believe it took that F in ChemEngr 40, my 4th semester in college, to get me to change my major) and they gave me clearance shortly after. Attempt #2 seemed almost successful because I enrolled in their STARS (kinda like UCI “Tele” or UCLA “URSA”) easily, paying my tuition and fees via Mastercard. That was until the day before classes when I checked online to see what room I had to look for that first day of school and my enrollment for Spring 2005 WAS BLANK! WTF! But I would not waiver! I went to class that first day, got an add-card signed and enrolled the next afternoon. I had bought my textbook and journal and I was all ready to write like a monster for 16 weeks.
But wait I need a parking permit! I sat there in my car last night at the parking lot across the street from school where they have metered parking. Unfortunately, since it’s the lot closest to campus (I REFUSED TO PARK ALL THE WAY UP THIS HILL, WITH A STAIRCASE 4 STORIES HIGH w/o a permit at the risk of getting a ticket) it gets fullest fastest. But, again, I would not waiver. I sat there, waiting in patient anxiety and watched car upon car race angrily out the lot. It’s so funny because I was staring at this one particular car on my left and said to myself, "I want THIS space!" ‘Lo and behold, 25 minute later, a lady walks up to this car, gets in SO I SIGNALLED! Patience really works sometimes I guess.
Why, why has it been so hard to settle in this semester? Iya suggests that maybe it’ll make me appreciate this class more. Second day today, we’ll see. So far the hardest thing I’ve had to do since I started is maintain a journal. Our professor specifically asked us to take ours wherever we go and write whatever and whenever we feel like it. Now when something happens I don’t know whether to do an entry in my class journal, my REAL journal which I keep by my bed or MY BLOG! Hahaha…oh what a dilemma, Anna. =)
Happy March everyone! WAIT! Didn’t we just celebrate new year’s day?