Confessions of AttyArj

25 chuva

February 13, 2009
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A few days after I came out of my rock, I got tagged (uso ‘to ngayon sa Facebook).  At dahil kinarir ko na rin lang ang pag-iimbento pag-iisip ng 25 random things about me, naisipan kong i-post na rin dito. 

 

Here goes… 

 

1.  I’m overly critical and a very keen observer. 

2.  Music is the least of my obsessions.  I don’t own an I-Pod or an MP3 player.

3.  I’m quite talkative but not a very good listener =(

4.  I look ‘mataray’ but I’m actually very friendly.

5.  I’m super “inggitera”.

6.  Despite my age and my work, I’m still idealistic.  I’m still waiting searching for “the one”.

7.  My most memorable birthday present was a phone call from Piolo Pascual.  Thank you Ge (and Joji). 

8.  Except for PMS, I have a very high tolerance for pain.  I survived our sorority initiation without shedding a tear. 

9.  I don’t profess to be grammatically correct all the time but I really can’t stand grammatical errors in blog entries and facebook status updates.  Shout out na nga lang wrong grammar pa.  Grrrr!  Kainis!  Magtagalog na lang kasi. 

10.  I went to a lot of blind dates and have a lot of horror date stories.

11.  My grocery list is never without hotdog and SPAM.

12.  While in a friend’s house, I (accidentally) used church oil (the oil that grandmothers use/apply to cure pains and maladies) to cook ginisang corned beef.

13.  I can dress like a tramp but can’t act the part.  

14.  A psychic/feng shui expert once told me that I was destined to marry at the age of 28.  I was already 31 when I met her =(

15.  More than the intricacies of law, law school thought me how to have fun. 

16.  My Mama’s too much of a character and (sometimes) a little difficult to handle.  I’m beginning to think I’ll be exactly like her.

17.  I dress, walk and act like a lady but curse like a boy. 

18.  I love the colors purple, red, green, yellow and orange.  I hate pink and will never (ever) wear pink.

19.  I can live without a cellphone but not without TV.

20.  I’m very patient but fishing is definitely not for me.  It’s too f***ing boring!

21.  I’m still trying to convince myself of the benefits of a keeping healthy lifestyle.

22.  A friend apparently lost hope and stopped asking me to train and run marathons with her.

23.  I hate it when insensitive people ask me “why I’m still single” like it’s a highly contagious disease.   

24.  I’m Aquarian so I have this preconceived notion that everybody likes me.

25.  I am a middle child. Enough said.

 

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my mom the debutante

December 4, 2008
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Here’s the thing, gustong mag-debut ng nanay ko. 

Problema ‘to.  Problemang malaki.  Kaya naman nananawagan ako sa mga kapatid kong tumakas sa katotohan at nangibang bansa.  Hoy mga ungas, magsi-uwi kayo dito, tulungan nyo ako!  Gustong mag-debut ni Mama! 

Bakit at paano ako nasadlak sa problemang ito?  Kasalanan ni Bonifacio Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

Here’s the story.  Last Monday, while I was lounging at home, enjoying Bonifacio Day (a November 30 holiday thing which was, absurd as it was, moved to December 1.  Go figure!  I already stopped analyzing and questioning Tita Glow’s holiday economics thingy).  Anyway, there I was enjoying a couch potato moment when my makulit na nanay asked if we’ll throw a party for her birthday.

Here’s how our coversation went:

Mama:  Gusto ko may party sa birthday ko.

Arj:  Huh?  Ang tagal pa nun.  February pa.  Let’s think about Christmas muna.

Mama:  Siempre naman dapat special yun, 60th bday party ko yun.

Arj:  Okay lang.  Eh ‘di magpaparty tayo kung gusto mo.

Mama:  Kayo gagastos?

Arj:  Tingnan natin.  Sige.  Saan mo gusto?  Gusto mo sa Jollibee?  Okay dun, walang hassle, babayaran na lang (LOL).

Mama:  Hello!  Ayaw ko nga dun.  Nakakainis ka naman.  Mag-mumukha akong tanga.

Arj:  O sige, sa McDonalds na lang, mas sosyal konti (laugh again).

Mama:  Ayaw ko dun.  Basta gusto ko bigyan mo ako ng magandang party.

Arj:  Oo na nga, may party ka na, pero ikaw ang mag-aasikaso.  Hindi ko makakayang mag-plan ng party kasi busy ako sa work at nasa Pasig ako most of the time.  Ikaw, dito ka lang sa house, ikaw na lang mag-asikaso ng details tutal mga bisita mo naman yun.  Ikaw mag-plan kung anong gusto mong handa at kung sinong gusto mong i-invite.  Tapos, tsaka tayo mag-usap. 

Mama:  Okay.  Gusto ko dun sa Reception Hall nung Tita ni “D”.

Arj:  HA? (heart attack) Eh bakit dun?  Ang layo naman.  Tsaka, baka mahal bayad dun.

Mama:  Kesa naman sa Kuhala Bay, mas mahal dun.

Arj:  (still shocked) Ma, ano ba balak mo, mag-debut? 

Mama:  Ah basta, gusto ko bongga, yung naka-bihis ako tsaka yung mga bisita ko.

Arj:  Eh di mag-bihis ka.  Eh what’s wrong ba with having the party here?  Kasya naman ang mga friends mo dito sa bahay natin.  Parang nung 60th bday party ni Papa, dito lang pero masaya naman.  Sayang kasi yung ibabayad natin sa place ‘Ma, isama na lang natin sa handa para siguradong masarap.  Enjoy ang mga bisita.

Mama:  (medyo nakukumbinsi na)  Sabagay. 

Arj:  (para makumbinsi pa lalo) Tsaka ‘Ma, pag dun ka sa reception hall nag-party, mag-uuwian agad yung mga bisita mo, wala ng kwentuhan at inuman after.  Walang bonding kasi may time limit yung lugar at may distance from home factor. 

Mama:  Oo nga.  (hayyy, finally!)  Sige, dito na lang.

Arj:  Oh sige, tawagan mo yung caterer para makapag-set tayo ng menu at budget.

After non, nakahinga na ako ng maluwag, umakyat ako sa kwarto ko at natulog (sayang ang bakasyon kung hindi itutulog).

Akala ko tapos na, okay na, nagkasundo na kami.  Mali pala ako.  Makulit pala talaga ang nanay ko.

Nang dumating si “D” for our usual weekly expedition (from Rizal to Pasig), humirit na naman ang debutante kong nanay.  Akala yata hindi ko naririnig yung kwentuhan nilang dalawa.  Here’s what I overheard:

Mama:  “D” alam mo ba kung magkano yung bayad sa Reception Hall ng Tita mo?

“D”:  Naku, hindi po.  Pero pwede ko pong itanong.  Bakeeet?

Mama:  Birthday ko kasi sa February.  Gusto kong mag-party.

“D”:  Ahhh!  Parang debut ba ito Tita?  May cotillion ba?  (laugh) 

OMG!  Seryoso sha.  Gusto nya talagang mag-debut.  Anong gagawin ko?  Pipigilan ko ba sha?  Magpapatahi na ba ako ng gown?

Ano kayang motif?  Kelangan ba yung cake may bumababang manika sa hagdan?  Dapat ba may 60 roses? 60 candles? at 60 gifts?  Naku, 180 guests na agad yun.  Ano kayang magandang give-away?  Hayyy!  This is precisely the reason why hindi ako nag-debut!

Mga inaanak, pasensha na, wala kayong christmas gifts ngayung pasko, kelangang mag-save, magpapa-debut ng nanay si ninang.


(3) ShoeMart

September 17, 2008
4 Comments

 

As a resident of Pasig for the last six years I became accustomed to being just a stone’s throw away from everything.  With no less than five malls around the corner, my hunger pangs, coffee fixation, bag obsession and shoe addiction are easily satisfied, if not cured.  These malls kept me sane (who ever invented retail therapy is a genius), fit (walking burns calories) and, of course, fashionable and happy (again, retail therapy is the key).

 

Because of the proliferation of malls in the country, not just in the capital city, kahit saan ka lumingon may SM.  In fact, in the Ortigas area alone there are two SMs (SM Megamall and SM Hypermart).

           

Noong 80’s, wala pang SM.  Noon, ang tawag sa tindahan ni Henry Sy ay “ShoeMart”.  Lima (5) pa lang ang branches ng ShoeMart noon and they are strategically located in Manila, Makati, Cubao, Cebu and Ilo-ilo (I can still remember this because the names of the 5 branches were written at the bottom of their plastic bags and I used to recite, correction, sing about it.  No kidding.).  Since the branch in Araneta Center Cubao was the nearest to Rizal, that’s where we go. 

 

Sa loob nang isang taon, siguro mga apat o limang beses lang kaming pumupunta sa ShoeMart para mag-shopping.  Naka-schedule na yun and, usually, in preparation for a special occasion.  Here’s our usual schedule March, before Holy Week (to buy Easter Sunday dress); June, before the start of classes (to buy school supplies); November, before All Saints/Souls Day (to buy candles and sementeryo outfit, hehehe, pag pangit damit mumultuhin) December, before Christmas (to buy Christmas clothes and Christmas gifts).    

 

Pag December, super-special ang trip namin sa Cubao.  Kasi, in addition to our usual ShoeMart visit, pumupunta din kami sa COD, to watch the Christmas window display, at sa Araneta Coliseum, to look at the giant Christmas tree and to watch Disney or Holiday on Ice. 

 

Dahil sa ShoeMart kami namimili, akala ko sosyal ako.  Akala ko mayaman kami.  Hindi pala.  Hindi pala kami “well to do family”.

 

Noong 80’s, ang politically correct term para sa mga mayayaman ay “well to do family”.  Let’s use that in a sentence.  ‘Michelle is a beautiful girl, she hails from Antipolo and comes from a well to do family’.  Oh ‘di ba, politically correct at pang textbook yan.

 

Anyway, na-discover kong hindi kami ‘well to do’ kasi yung family ni Sheila, my grade school best friend, sa Rustans, Ansons at LandMark nag-sa-shopping.  “Saan yon?”, I asked.  She told me, “sa Makati, near ShoeMart Makati”.  “Ahhh”, sabi ko.  I pretended that I knew what she was talking about kahit, sa totoo lang, hindi pa ako nakakatapak sa ShoeMart Makati. 

 

When I got home that day, I asked Mama why we don’t shop in Makati.  She told me it was far from our place and that it was a bit expensive to shop there.  That was the end of it.  I didn’t ask her to bring me there.  Hindi ko na rin siya kinulit about the different shops in Makati, after all ShoeMart Cubao is good enough for me.  Kahit halos kalahati ng mga girls sa class kapareho ko ng damit at sapatos pag Christmas party okay lang, mas maganda naman ang ipit ko.


(2) “My First” Barbie Doll

September 4, 2008
4 Comments

 

One Christmas morning I woke up feeling excited because I’ll finally be able to open my Christmas gifts. I was so excited kasi hindi ko nagustuhan yung na-exchange gift ko sa class. It was a book. Okay sana kung book talaga kasi I love books. Ang kaso isa lang syang lalagyan ng tsokolate na nag-papanggap na libro. It was a Christmas cardboard book full of Goya candies and chocolates (from the Goya Fun Factory!). Although it was a step up from the plastic Christmas candy stocking that I got the year prior (ganon ako kamalas!), I was still very upset. Kasi naman I prayed hard and chose a really nice gift for my Monito (para good karma) tapos candy na naman. Hello, madaming candies and chocolates sa bahay namin, imported pa kasi nagpa-door-to-door si Lola. To make matters worst, ang natanggap ng Ate ko eh six pieces of Sanrio glasses (medyo mamahalin yun at nabibili lang sa Gift Gate), tapos si Gee Marie got a shoulder bag na hugis at mukhang toothpaste (super uso yun noon). Haaay, halos mamatay ako sa inggit.

Anyway, when I opened my gift I was so happy because I got my first Barbie doll and it was actually named “My First Barbie”, says so on the box. Maganda pero simple lang si “My First”, naka pink siyang tank top and pink and white plaid skirt. Pink din ang undies nya. Tapos yun na, wala nang ibang kasama sa box. Sabi ko nga I’ll save my allowance para maka-bili ako ng spare clothes ni “My First”, ayaw ko kasi ng pink.

At that time, akala ko my parents got me “My First” kasi they are planning to give me a head start on my collection. Inisip kong mabuti kung anong klaseng Barbie and ipapabili ko pag pumunta kami sa ShoeMart (SM Cubao na ngayun). Boy, was I wrong, very wrong. “My First” was my first, last and only Barbie doll, hindi na yun nasundan.

Hindi ko na matandaan kung kina Mama at Papa or kay Santa Claus nanggaling si “My First”, pero ang alam ko share kami ni Ate. Siya din, yun lang ang nalarong Barbie.

Nang mag-grade 5 ako, madami na akong friends, ung iba feeling dalaga na pero ako umaasa pa rin na mabibigyan ng bagong Barbie. At that time uso yung pag-i-invite sa house. Lalo na pag may project or presentation na kailangan i-rehearse. Parang opportunity mo yun to show off your Barbie or Sanrio collections. Padamihan, pagandahan, payabangan. Pasarapan din nang handang merienda. Pero yung mga friends ko, hindi sila mayayabang, they don’t show off, kaya lang inggitera at mahadera talaga ako.

I remember seeing Almira’s Garfield fone and vast Sanrio collection pero hindi ako masyadong na-inggit, wala pa kasi kaming telephone line and besides, meron din naman akong mini-collection ng Sanrio, Strawberry Shortcake at ET Memorabilia, mga padala ni Lola at Mommy Cely. Ang tumatak sa isip ko eh yung Barbie collection ni Cristina. Grabe, I was green with envy, she has 20 Barbie dolls ata (that’s probably the entire Barbie line back then). Meron siyang Barbie na may singsing. Kumpleto din siya sa accessories, merong kotse, vanity set, pang-kulot (twirler ata tawag dun) at, ang pinaka-importante sa lahat, meron siyang Ken (sigh!).

When I got home, I immediately told Mama about Cristina’s Barbie collection. Naawa siguro kaya she promised to buy me a new one, nothing fancy kasi nag-papabili daw si Keith (my younger brother) ng Match Box. Kaya lang, nung bibili na kami, Cabbage Patch Kids na ang uso, mas mahal, mas sosyal. Ayaw ko na ng Barbie. FYI, Cabbage Patch is the pudgy looking doll that usually comes with a Birth Certificate. Hindi gaanong cute nor cuddly yung doll, pero bongga, kaka-iba, akalain mo, my Birth Certificate! I think the idea was – – you don’t buy a Cabbage Patch, you adopt one. Luckily nag-balikbayan si Lola Luz at si Lolo Emong, isinama nila si Mama sa Duty Free kaya nag-karoon ako ng Cabbage Patch. Again, that was my first and last.


(1) The Red Tamaraw

September 4, 2008
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When I was 10 or 11, I discovered the Filipino family class system. It was then that I realized that we are middle class and not as well off as most of my classmates in Siena (dating St. Catherine).

 

The not so obvious signs*:

 

(1) The red Tamaraw school service.

 

Back then, although Papa has a (secondhand) 1980 Toyota Corolla DX car, a school service had to bring me and my Ate If (short for Ifchelle) to and from school which is a good 30 to 45 minutes away from our place. However, unlike my classmates who have real school buses, our school service, owned by a family friend, was a red Tamaraw jeep with a dilapidated tarapal (the plastic window rain cover usually seen in jeepneys).

 

Although there are a few school services similar to our red Tamaraw, yung sa amin ang pinaka-luma at pinaka-mukhang kawawa. Siguro dahil ang layo ng biyahe namin araw araw. Feeling ko nga kaya hindi ako napansin ni Jay eh dahil amoy usok na ako pag-dating ng school.

 

Dahil ganon nga ang aming school service situation, I remember being so envious of some classmates because of their rides. Merong naka-Hi-Ace (FYI, sosyal yun dati), merong naka-Benz at merong naka RV, no kidding, may kitchen ang service nila at sa parang sofa sila naka-upo. And, of course, there was Margarita. Who would forget Margarita? I was envious of Margarita not because she has her own car and driver, madami naman kasi sila na hatid-sundo ng kotse. Na-inggit ako kay Margarita dahil artista siya (meron siyang soap opera sa TV), may yellow sports car at madalas dumi-diretso siya sa shooting after class. Bongga!

 

Kahit medyo bulok ang service namin, laging masaya ang biyahe namin pauwi. May nag-ge-Game & Watch (gamit ang Game & Watch ni Emerson), nag-su-super Trump (si Buking at si Jun), kumakain (si Catherine of course), at nag-co-cold war (si Ate at ang kanyang not so secret admirer na si Edsel). Problema nga lang dapat lagi kaming prepared to hide under the seats, “kolorum” (meaning, hindi registered sa LTO as service or utility vehicle) kasi yung red Tamaraw. Para kaming mga boy scouts, lagi kaming handa, handang magtago sa mga taga_LTO na nanghuhuli ng kolorum.

 

Minsan, excited kaming naglabasan, maaga kasi natapos ang exams namin, problema, nasira ang red Tamaraw, ayaw mag start. Kahit anung pukpok at kalikot ni Apo ayaw umandar, mukhang namama-alam na. Buti na lang kasama ko si Brenda (yaya ko), nag-jeep na lang kami. Napagalitan ni Mama si Brenda, dapat daw hinintay namin yung sasakyang ipinadala ni Ka Lilian, yung may-ari ng red Tamaraw.

 

The year after that, iba na service namin. Pero, sa totoo lang, favorite namin yung red Tamaraw. Edsel, Jun, Emerson, Buking, Nicki, LetLet, Mylene, Gee Marie, Maureen, Catherine, me and the others (I forgot their names, sorry) had a lot of fond memories in that re Tamaraw. In fact, kahit napalitan yun nang Owner-type Jeep, nang Pampasaherong Jeep at nang iba pang sasakyan, yun ang favorite namin. Lalo na si (now Kuya) Edsel dahil doon nabuo ang love team nila ng ate ko. Now that’s another story.

 

 

* this is going to be a series so please watch out for the others. I will number them consecutively so readers wouldn’t get lost.

 


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