I love a good impression when I see one:

Aside from the song, I liked the dog in the vid.

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Last weekend my wife and I dropped by Eastwood City to visit a restaurant she wanted to do a review on. Originally we were supposed to go to Flying Pig but ended up eating at Cookbook, her other choice. After lunch, we decided to hang out a little more. Normally we would have gone someplace else since I work here and we didn't think there would be much to do or see. We also dropped by the local pet shop to buy my dog Jazz some needed meds since he has some problems with his liver.


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One thing I like about Pet Central is the small yet cozy atmosphere. I have been thinking of taking Jazz to Eastwood for a long time if it weren't for the fact that he had this tendency to herd other dogs that he sees. Although a local breed, he has the appearance and nature of a Border Collie with a loud bark to match. Maybe when the time is right I will be able to bring him along and add a picture of him in the shop's collection of "family" photographs.
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As I said I thought there wasn't going to be much to see so I was surprised when there was a Gundam convention of sorts where fans and collectors could view other people's creations or even make their own. I'm not exactly a fan but I did do scale modeling before and seeing these colorful works brought back memories of sheet styrene stems all over my desk and floor, reference material scattered on my bed, and the smell of paint and thinner all over the room.
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One thing I noticed about the latest kits is the level of detail has certainly improved. Gone are the days when one would have to live with approximations leading one to just put up with what was available or DIY something. Not to say that this is no longer done, it's just most kits nowadays come with what you expect to see.
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Our day ended with a mini concert of rap artists from overseas. I wasn't able to get any shots as I preferred to watch rather than take pictures.

And so that is how that weekend went. The following day I went to play airsoft with my friends to take out some chips on my shoulder.
One of the things I like about my work is the opportunity to speak to people from other countries. I often get to talk with folks from Europe like France, Italy, Germany, and Spain. Despite the language barrier, I feel that most, if not all my conversations are likened to either a doorway to another world, or a simple mirror image of ourselves.

One may ask what it's like to speak to someone who lives on the other side of the world. One thing I can say about my experience is that we are more alike than different. For example, I enjoy having open discussions with people from Italy. They are never without anything to say and you can "hear" the passion in the sentences they make.

The French are a bit reserved when you meet them the first time, but once they get comfortable with you, they make you feel welcome every time you talk to them. One nice thing I learned is their love of taking walks in and around the city, or in a forest near their village. It makes me realize that simple pleasures are one of the best ways to let go after a tiring week in the office.

Germans are very punctual, they are always there when you call them, ready for the day's work. They also like to talk about every thing under the sun and sometimes a bit adventurous when it comes to picking places to have a telephone discussion. One colleague of mine surprised me when politely interrupted me because he had to shift gears. It turned out that the number he was using auto directs his calls to his cellphone and we were talking while he was driving along the Autobahn!

When I had my first conversation with a Spaniard, I had no idea how their telephone numbers were arranged much like the local cellphone numbers in my country. Since my native language uses a lot of Spanish words, there were times I could make sense of some the things my colleagues says in his native tongue. Like the Spanish, I too like hot cocoa, relaxing afternoons reading or just lounging around watching the everything around me move.

Thinking about what I just wrote made me think of how lucky I am to have this kind of work. I have always wanted to visit other countries, to see things I have only read in books or seen in television. By having these conversations, it gives me a glimpse of what it's like out there. But what about what I said earlier regarding mirrors images? Simple. We are all people looking for the same things in life: to earn an honest day's pay, have fun with friends, and come home to family.

Bowler Wild Cat - Top Gear - BBC

Posted by Benji On 1:15 AM 0 comments
I find vehicles like these to be cooler than sportscars. Maybe I just got tired of sleek bodywork and a chassis just an inch above the asphalt. I hope in comes in black though.

There comes a time when feel that we are prepared for anything that comes to us. We are confident, dare I say cocky, ready to take on any challenge. Then comes "real life". We become stronger or assume the fetal position because of the experience.

If I had the opportunity to talk to myself when I was younger, I wonder what I would say. Would I go on talk down on the person that I once was, tell him that half of the ideas he has in his head are worthless and to start being more practical? Or would I instead tell him that those are good ideas that may or may come true but dream anyway?

I guess we all wish we can go back, to fix what we think was wrong with ourselves. Just when you think you are beyond self pity, you suddenly feel that all that you have done doesn't match the grand design you envisioned many years ago.

Seems I'm just as guilty of this as anyone else.

Every now and then I like to hear something other than the news. I'm glad there are vids like this:

Ross Kemp: Middle East Gaza 1/5

Posted by Benji On 2:25 AM 0 comments
The conflict between Israel and the Palestinianshas been going on since the time the state was established. I found this vid with host Ross Kemp who has been to the middle east to cover several stories about what is happening over there. It is a complex situation, one that raises a lot of opinions.

"http://www.youtube.com/v/pWeiAmr_atA?fs=1&hl=en_US">

Favorite Movie lines...

Posted by Benji On 12:23 PM 0 comments
I couldn't find the movie scene, but I did find the poem Viggo Mortensen used in the movie "G.I. Jane".  I like the poem, it was direct without being brash, it criticized but it did not condemn.

Self-pity


I never saw a wild thing
sorry for itself.
A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough
without ever having felt sorry for itself.

David Herbert Lawrence
Working in an office has always been likened to a microcosm of a society. Each member is a "sample" of a personality type we encounter. You also have different social groups and hierarchies.

I consider myself either a wallflower or the talking rock. I don't really go to work for the exclusive activity of being able to share something. Neither do I go there just to make a day's wage.

A friend of mine once asked me how I would deal with situations where friction occurs between colleagues and how it can affect one's personal performance. My stance in this has been to always stay away from topics or subjects that may turn a professional relationship into something else. NO, I am not talking about having an affair. With my personality, I have better luck seducing a computer monitor rather than going out with an office mate.

What I'm referring to is when conflict arises when you start to know too much about someone. I sometimes see people carrying a chip on their shoulder because they heard from someone who learned from someone else about something that in turn affects the first person I started off with this sentence. Hey, if you're having trouble understanding this, imagine how hard it was for me to follow this since the names of the "guilty" were withheld to protect their identities.

It makes me wonder in turn, how awful and in some cases downright violent we humans are. We like to smite but try our damnedest to get the sympathy of others. We say we want attention but hide in the shadows when we screw something up. We want to have our cake and eat it too. We say there are lot of immature people out there who are so shallow because they spent a ton of money on buying an iPhone 4 and learn the antennae sucks. Yet we also turn kindergarten when it comes to our own wants and desires.

Now that I have regained my sense of direction after writing those confusing paragraphs, I answered my friend I often don't encounter conflict. Why, I tend not to deal with anyone on a personal level. Sure, it sounds very "Vulcan", "Data", or just plain anti-social but at least I don't have to worry about something I know I won't be able to deal with in the first place. So yes, I too have some inadequacies. In fact, I would say that I may need a lesson in the so-called social graces.

Speaking of dealing with people everyday, I also question this long tradition of needing to be involved in everything about a person. I mean, in a professional environment, we are taught that we should respect others and we must not interfere with anything outside what we were hired to do. Yet we still like talking about stuff that is outside our "capabilities" because it's so much juicer to learn who slept with who and how they did it (now that we have Youtube, we can also watch it).

I don't see this as me looking down the mountain wondering what the hell happened to society and should I send another flood to cleanse the earth. Rather, I feel like a spectator confused at why someone in the stands decided to throw his plastic cup at someone else for no apparent reason.
I like it when I hear a song that doesn't follow rules when it comes to composition, music, or even the message. I heard this several years ago when I had a lot of questions. I still do, but I'm more comfortable now with the lack of answers.

Aftermath

Posted by Benji On 3:48 PM 0 comments
So the country has experienced another storm, this one the strongest in years ( I'm referring to Meji also known as "Juan"). My area was not as affected compared to the storm that ripped through Marikina last year, but this doesn't mean the rest of the country was just as lucky. With 10 confirmed dead, nature still has a way of letting us know that we are still under her control...

I read in my facebook how some parents got really pissed off at the fact that the government doesn't suspend classes until after they have sent their kids to school to be stuck there waiting for someone to pick them up. I can't really understand why we have to wait until it's too late. Wouldn't it be better to play hooky rather than get stuck in traffic with the wind lashing out on the street?

No vids for me today, I think it is time for me to put some of my thoughts, whatever they may be, on this blog of mine. To tell you the truth, I am not much of a writer like my wife is. Now that I have this, I can see what motivates her to put her thoughts into writing. No, I won't be making any best selling novels any time soon, but I will say something every now and then.

Shoots wife. Cool as hell.

Posted by Benji On 6:35 PM 0 comments
As the video presents, there are "strange" things happening nowadays:

Slashed Throat Halloween Tutorial

Posted by Benji On 2:32 PM 0 comments
Since halloween is approaching I was looking at some vids on what one can do to scare the heck out of people. Now this won't really put your blood pressure in the red, but it is cool to do.


I'm a lot of people have read this book. When I stumbled on the made for television version, I just had to share it.

Much has been reported about the rescue of Chilean miners. What I did not know since I did not keep tabs on the news, was the "conflict" regarding Johnny Barrios. Apparently while he and his colleagues were trapped, he commented that if they were going to be rescued, would his wife or mistress be there to welcome him. I'll let the video do the talking.

Monday morning...or afternoon.

Posted by Benji On 3:22 AM 0 comments
It's a slow day today at work with not much to do so here I am writing this. Sifting through my photobucket I realized I had some pictures from photowalks I attended with my wife. Between the two of us, she is the photographer although I used to do this many years ago. 

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I must have been living in cave for a couple of years. When we visited the Quezon City Memorial circle, I was surprised to see they now have a small amusement park. The last time I was there, more traditional forms of recreation like biking jogging, and other sports were the most common things to do. They did have a skate park but I'm not sure it really hit the mark.

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Funny how there is something like this in a memorial. I mean, it's cool and fun but isn't already someone who could be walking around when you least expect it? And no, I'm not referring to folks who like to take midnight strolls.

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Like any amusement park, this one has a small roller coaster ride. My wife who once told me she would never ride one, literally ran to the ticket booth to get us seats. It wasn't a long ride but the loops were sufficient enough to make you scream if you've never been in one. I thought of bringing my camera during the ride but was vetoed on the grounds that it might go flying out of my hands and hurt someone on the ground.

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I'm not sure what this ride is supposed to be and I lost my shot of the name. Looks fun though and not as twisty as a roller coaster.

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I wonder if they had to pay for any trademark or copyrights to use the Alien in one of the many decorations in the park.


But for those who come to the memorial for a nice afternoon, the memorial itself is still the landmark. It certainly looks better now since I last saw it.

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One may say that a memorial is there to let us remember important people and events that influenced change in our country. I agree and we should definitely preserved it as it was meant to be. However, I can't help but wonder how Mr. Quezon himself feels about seeing a place that is bustling with activity every weekend. I think he would enjoy that too.

Handywork: idle hands not allowed

Posted by Benji On 3:20 AM 0 comments

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I just took a look at my calendar for the umpteenth time to see what day it is. I'm sure I am not alone in this universe when it comes to that tingle knowing that the last day of the week. Three years ago Fridays never mattered to me. Being part of a BPO back then, I was used to revolving schedules where my days off could fall in any day of the week.

But that was then. I like how my schedule works now. With a regular weekend to look forward to, I get to do things I didn't I could do before: do housework, and work on a hobby.

I've always loved doing things with my hands. To be more specific, I love to tinker with things. Curiosity about how things work was something I never got over since I was a kid. I lost count on how many television sets met their grave when I tried to do some "improvements". Now that I have airsoft, I am able to omit household appliances from my "deadly" touch.

A fellow hobbyist and forum member once asked me what is about why I could not stop taking apart something that is working perfectly fine. It took awhile for me to answer as I had some scripted answers to choose from in my head. In the end I told him it was not just to improve something or wanting to reinvent the wheel. For me it was about understanding and learning. I like the challenge of making something work not only efficiently, but also to beyond one's expectations. I also like to experiment, to see how one small modification will affect the overall performance of a device.

Like it or not we all have some sort of compulsion to do something right. Or to improve something beyond what it is designed to do. We always look for a magic formula, like alchemists making gold out of lead. Sometimes it works, other times it ends in spectacular failure, leading us to think of what went wrong or what made us decide to take that particular route.

As I write this my hands are getting itchy again. Time to do another experiment.
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