Friday, September 30, 2005
Looking at the nominees, it doesn't seem right. Pacquiao, Aquino, the Dalai Lama... all behind some 23-year-old upstart? His first album was titled Evil Man, for heaven's sake.
Far be it from me to define "hero," but this is just wrong. So why don't y'all head on over to the Time Asia's Heroes Poll and set things right, hm?
Three related links:
Corazon Aquino - Wikipedia
Manny Pacquiao Online [Pacland]
Rain bio (It's hard to find decent info on this guy.)
Thursday, September 29, 2005
Ms. Philippines Precious Lara Quigaman doles out a smile in her Philippineapple-inspired national costume.
Philippine candidate Precious Lara Quigaman was crowned 2005 Miss International in Tokyo, Japan, Monday night, becoming the fourth Filipina to win the crown and the first Filipina to bag a major international beauty title in more than 25 years. Lara Quigaman becomes the fourth Filipino to be crowned Miss International after Gemma Cruz, Aurora Pijuan and Melanie Marquez (who, incidentally, was also Supermodel of the World second runner-up, and a Mrs. of the World contestant, if I'm not mistaken - truly beautiful woman, Mimilanie Marquez).
Miss International Precious Lara Quigaman, a freelance web designer and model, does us proud in this beauty pageant-crazy nation. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, the Manila Bulletin, and the Philippine Star devoted generous sections of the front page to crowing about Lara Quigaman's triumph, a surprise for most, as the dusky 5"6 charmer was not even considered a frontrunner, apparently.
Faux Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo sent a letter of congratulations, where she's quoted as saying that Ms. Precious Lara Quigaman "...joins a long list of Filipinas who have brought our country honor and prestige, not only for their beauty, but also for their intelligence, charm and grace."
Oh, please. Precious Lara Quigaman Ms. International 2005 deserves all the honor for taking home that title, and she's uniting Filipinos like Pacquiao did a few weeks ago. Faux President Gloria's issuing that statement, however, absolutely soils the moment. Thanks to her cheap press release, Ms. Quigaman's victory is is tainted, stained, dirtied, sullied. GMA's move positively reeks.
There's a second list, though, a long list of Filipinas who have brought our country dishonor and infamy, not only for their preoccupation with their looks, but also for their cunning, sleaze, and disgrace. Thankfully, it's a list that most beauty queens don't fall under (unless y'all remember Sharmaine Gutierrez's involvement in the Metro Manila Filmfest scandal). Lady politicians, however, seem to be privy to making that list. In a way, I'm glad she did issue that release, because it serves to highlight the fact that we have a chance to edify things once that power-hungry Arroyo is no longer Philippine Chief Executive.
Long live people like Ms. International 2005 Precious Lara Quigaman!
Three related links:
Quigaman's Ms Philippines bio
Sun Star's Breaking News
Miss International Official Site
Wednesday, September 28, 2005
Norman has been a Christian for less than eight months, and but from the content on his blog, you'd think he was a seasoned believer! Every post is a joyful testimony to God's goodness, and I can't help but be uplifted by every thankful post, every informative digression, every thoughtful discourse.
While I've always known Norman to be an intelligent and creative individual, Normz is a surprising glimpse at a person who has yet to witness the fullest potential of God's greatness. As his walk with God continues, I am sure he will be blessed - no, SUPERblessed! - as you will be when you swing by his blog.
The Normz. Visit Norman today.
Link Du Jour is Superblessed's recommended site of the day. It appears at least three times a week. When you're linked on the right-hand side of this blog, you're linked because yours is a quality blog that superblesses me in many ways. This is my way of saying "Thank You" for playing an important role in helping me grow and become a better person.
To Superblessed visitors: the Link Du Jour comes highly recommended. Please find time to visit the recommended blog and see how it (and its author) can be of benefit to you too.
Ganns started as a truck driver, Nix started as a nurse and I started as a lawyer. Guess who got out of the rat race first. It was not the lawyer or the nurse who earns more but the truck driver! How did this happen? Well, the truck driver has less expenses so his hurdle is smaller. Nix ended up winning the game after about 3 hours. Still, we had a good run because everyone was able to get out of the rat race. Hopefully, this translates to real life.
With no background in business, I learned so much from playing Cashflow. I learned how to record my assets and liabilities, determine how much my passive income is and where the money really is--real estate and businesses! This reminds me of the definition of wealth used in the bestseller The Millionaire Next Door. Millionaires are not those who live in the posh villages. Millionaires are those who can live comfortably for ten years even without a job. I can't wait to play Cashflow again!
My dream, by the way, is to donate a huge amount of money to a church.
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
Needless to say, we were duped BIG time. The base ice cream was not the one used for the Blizzard. It was soft serve ice cream! Although soft serve ice cream is healthier, I didn't go there for that! I went for a real Blizzard! It was after I had the dessert when I realized that there were no logos of Dairy Queen anywhere in the store! Twist had blatantly mislead me into believing that I'm getting Dairy Queen when all I'm getting is soft serve ice cream served the "Blizzard" way. Dairy Queen ought to sue these people! Obviously, I'm never going back!
Monday, September 26, 2005
1. Go into your archive.
2. Find your 23rd post (or closest to).
3. Find the 5th sentence (or closest to).
4. Post the text of the sentence in your blog along with these instructions.
I lost the SIM more than a month ago, but the folks at Smart were only able to provide me a new SIM today.
Taken from a blog entry titled The One with the Sore Throat and Smart SIM, I was basically in pain from inflammed tonsils and a month without a mobile phone SIM.
"Today, I picked up my new Smart SIM at the Smart Wireless Center in Alabang. I lost the SIM more than a month ago, but the folks at Smart were only able to provide me a new SIM today. Oh, well. To their credit, their service personnel were extremely accommodating. If you'd like my mobile, please email or YM me, and I'll gladly give it to you." It was a mundane post, really, and I'm superblessed and surprised that Deb Sawyer even bothered to wish me well.
Picked up from Sister's Weblog.
Saturday, September 24, 2005
Tonight, however, is the party. We've booked the Taft Avenue/Vito Cruz/La Salle Jollibee for Nathan's celebration, and from the looks of it, we're expecting around 130 people. Man! That's a lotta family and friends.
Will post pictures tomorrow. God superbless!
Thursday, September 22, 2005
CSB-Hotel, the only hotel-school in the Philippines, is located at Estrada street.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
The standard traffic violation scenario goes, more or less, like this: citizen breaks traffic rule. Cop pulls citizen over. Citizen tries to talk it out. Cop issues citizen a traffic violation receipt with corresponding prohibitive fine (PHP500 and up) and confiscates license. Citizen goes to City Hall to pay prohibitive fine and gets license back; in relevant cases, citizen attends driving seminar given by City Hall.
Here's what usually happens: citizen breaks traffic rule. Cop pulls citizen over. Citizen tries to talk it out. Cop reminds citizen of repercussions and results of violation (lost time, inconvenience, etc.). Citizen offers grease money of anywhere from PHP40 to PHP300, depending on violation. Cop accepts. Citizen gets away, government gets nothing.
Given the inconvenience and prohibitive fine, I wouldn't be surprised if I were to learn that there is actually little money turned over to government bureaucracy from traffic. The high price of the fine, the inconvenience of going to City Hall and waiting in line, and the sheer gall of many crooked cops, make it so much more convenient to just pay the policeman a little bribe (in the Philippines, it's called tong). That's a lot of lost revenue.
Here's a cockamamie suggestion that's crazy enough to work.
1. Lower the cost of the traffic violations and allow the driver to pay for the violation on the spot.
2. Like meter maids, allow the cops to issue traffic violation receipts (collected in numbered receipt booklets) and collect the money. Each transaction is worth two receipts (original to the driver, carbon-copy left in the booklet), and the cop turns over the entire booklet at the end of the day.
The pro's of the scheme?
1. Lesser chance for bribes. Because the fee for the violation is lower, it is more likely the driver may pay the fine instead of offering the cop a bribe.
2. Lesser chance for graft and corruption. Because the driver receives a receipt (and the other is in the booklet), and each receipt is numbered, the odds are less likely for a traffic cop to pocket his collected receipts at the end of the day.
3. Increased funds. Because the cops turn over the cash at the end of the day, the government is likely to earn more money.
1. Difficult to monitor repeat violations. Because the local traffic enforcement agencies are largely offline, it can take a long time to determine if a certain driver is guilty of repeat violations. However, this is a problem that is a problem today anyway.
I'm sure I'm making this sound more simplistic than it is (plus, I'm posting thus during my lunch break, and I'm starved!), but at this point, the government is set to implement another set of taxes that will raise gasoline prices to ridiculous levels (diesel prices have gone up 18 times since the start of the year, almost P9 per liter!), and I'm just looking for alternative ways to increase government income. Since corruption is so prevalent here, we need to be more creative to get past the sleazeballs and slimebags (but I love you with the love of Christ).
Tuesday, September 20, 2005
Oh, and the kind, generous folks behind Michael Passons's MySpace site are allowing the free download of Just Keep Walking, a truly amazing, amazing song, only until Tuesday night, so run and download it quick!
Monday, September 19, 2005
1. (2) FOR THE MOMENTS I FEEL FAINT. Reliant K.
2. (3) FORTY KINDS OF SADNESS. Ryan Cabrera.
3. (4) YOUR HOUSE. Alanis Morissette.
4. (5) CHARIOT. Gavin DeGraw.
5. (1) WORDPLAY. Jason Mraz.
6. (6) SHAKE IT OFF. Mariah Carey.
7. (11) ALL THE WAY. Craig David.
8. (9) LETTERS FROM WAR. Mark Schultz.
9. (new) JUST KEEP WALKING. Michael Passons.
10. (14) DON’T’CHA. Pussycat Dolls feat. Busta Rhymes.
11. (19) GROWN AND SEXY. Babyface.
12. (8) HEALING RAIN. Michael W. Smith.
13. (7) WITH YOU I’M BORN AGAIN Vonzell Solomon & Billy Preston.
14. (20) TRIPPIN’. Toni Braxton.
15. (10) KARMA (Superstition Remix). Alicia Keys.
16. (15) EXCUSES. Jasmine Trias.
17. (new) CRAZY CHICK. Charlotte Church.
18. (new) THIS IS HOW A HEART BREAKS. Rob Thomas.
19. (new) BECAUSE OF YOU. Kelly Clarkson.
20. (new) MOVE IN MY DIRECTION Bananarama.
In my head, I'm thinking: simple, healthful food, probably with decent prices (hey, men and women of the cloth don't have that much cash to go around, this isn't 18th century Manila). I wasn't too far off the mark, and suffice it to say that Monasteryo is an experience in left-of-center eating.
My meal consisted of a light Greek beef broth spiced with lemon juice that was tart and heartwarming, a flavorful rosemary and chicken-stuffed tomatoes (three half-filled tomato cups) baked in butter and cheese, and a delightful alcohol-spiked gelato (Mompo? hwekhwekhwek). It was delicious, filling but not too much.
Other points: the two-page menu was interesting: each dish came with descriptions of the priests/nuns behind the dish. Service was excellent, with communion-type bells on each table for patrons to ring their already-attentive waiters with, and the interiors were stark, with faux-antique paintings of saints and other religious memorabilia on walls and shelves. [Idols? Whatever, you guys.] Music consisted of Bukas Palad-type Christian music blared from a poorly placed stereo system.
I don't know if it's a psychological thing, but knowing I was going to eat food that was simple in its nature and history was very good for me. Eating the food became an exercise in eating: savoring each bite, enjoying the hour that I had, and stopping to appreciate the nuances of the flavors working with each other (a real joy, especially with the tomatoes, as the rosemary's herby flavor drifted in and out of the pungent cheese, baked chicken, and red tomatoes).
Would I return? Most likely. I think Monasteryo's one place I would like to enjoy, though, by myself to return to what's important: the knowledge that food is also a gift from God.
His message was taken from Matthew 6, a continuation of the series on Teach Us to Pray. His verse? "Forgive us our debts," from which he took the content, the Four Powerful Qualities of God's Forgiveness. The fact of the matter is this: the power, penalty, and presence of sin was broken by Christ on the cross. In six agonizing (but short) hours, Jesus paid the price, and in breathing his last, "It is finished," called out a triumphant message to Heaven (We did it!), Hell (I have saved my children from your evil!), and Humanity (I love you this much!).
No matter how crazy we may be, we can and will be forgiven if we ask for it in sincerity.
The four qualities of God's forgiveness are these:
God's forgiveness is instant. 1 John 1:9 tells us that God is willing to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. He doesn't give us a time limit, doesn't set borders or strict rules, and doesn't let us simmer in guilt (we do a fine job of that ourselves, don't we?).
God's forgiveness is ready. Available and inexhaustible, there's nothing we can do that God cannot forgive if we're truly sorry. [Interesting point: if one is a believer who turns his back on God, isn't he supposed to be beyond God's forgiveness? There's a Bible verse or two on that, but I think God can look even beyond that and forgive.] Ps 103:11-12.
God's forgiveness is free. Unlike local policemen, you can't bribe him, buy him, or beg from him - because there really is no need to anyway - we're forgiven and justified by grace. Roms. 3:23.
God's forgiveness is complete. It's all you'll ever need. Jn 19:30.
Saturday, September 17, 2005
1) Have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Savior?
2) Maintain a blog where the content is largely Christian in nature (e.g., no profane language, at least one weekly post on your relationship with God or how He makes himself known in your life)?
3) Have Filipino blood?
4) Not be afraid to let the world know that you love Jesus?
If so, I want the blog URL, because I want to link up, and also because I'm covering Filipino-Christian blogs for Blogs4God, a semi-definitive list of Christians who blog.
Pass this around to all your online brothers and sisters in the faith, and tell them to either post on this thread, or send me an email at superblessed at gmail.com. Please have this in by the end of September, because I plan to begin twice-monthly updates on Blogs4God starting October. God superbless!
Interesting comedy nominations. Here are my two cents, because I don't really watch dramas.
Outstanding Lead Actor In A Comedy Series
1. Arrested Development's Jason Bateman as Michael Bluth
2. Everybody Loves Raymond's Ray Romano as Ray Barone
3. Monk's Tony Shalhoub as Adrian Monk
4. Scrubs' Zach Braff as John "J.D." Dorian
5. Will & Grace's Eric McCormack as Will Truman
This is an interesting race, considering that four out of five nominees are previous winners already, with Bateman the most recent winner. Development's ratings notwithstanding, this doesn't look likely to be Bateman's year. With Shalhoub's ratings also sinking and Dorian an also-ran whose work seems unlikely to ever generate the kind of buzz necessary to win an Emmy, it looks like it's shaping up to be a Romano vs. McCormack race, and with Raymond off the air this season, it looks like Ray's all set to show that everyone truly does love him. Emmy to Romano.
Outstanding Lead Actress In A Comedy Series
1. Desperate Housewives' Marcia Cross as Bree Van De Camp
2. Desperate Housewives' Teri Hatcher as Susan Mayer
3. Desperate Housewives' Felicity Huffman as Lynette Scavo
4. Everybody Loves Raymond's Patricia Heaton as Debra Barone
5. Malcolm In The Middle's Jane Kaczmarek as Lois
Now this category just got interesting. While the ladies of Wisteria Lane may be wishing for a four-way slam, the Emmy voters decided to show up poor Eva Longoria (ironic, since she's always on tops with search engines); Nicolette Sheridan, despite a cunning move to Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series, was also locked out. Given this, Hatcher, Cross and Huffman are up against previous winners Heaton and Kaczmarek, the latter most unlikely to take home the trophy, strangely enough, given Malcolm's dismal ratings. Hatcher's character having won her a previous acting award, it appears most likely that she will take home the Emmy, but I wouldn't count out a surprisingly strong and effective performance by Cross as obsessive compulsive neatnik Bree Van De Camp. Assuming the Housewives' votes cancel each other out, I think this one's up for grabs between Cross and Heaton, who gets sentimental votes for the recently deceased Raymond. Emmy to Cross.
Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Comedy Series
1. Arrested Development's Jeffrey Tambor as George Bluth Sr.
2. Entourage's Jeremy Piven as Ari Jacobs
3. Everybody Loves Raymond's Peter Boyle as Frank Barone
4. Everybody Loves Raymond's Brad Garrett as Robert Barone
5. Will & Grace's Sean Hayes as Jack McFarland
The men of Raymond are arguably the best male ensemble on primetime comedy, and this category deserves to go to one of them, with my personal preference being Brad Garrett. Tambor and Boyle go way back, and while the former is truly brilliant, I tend to think that his performance as not-really-there father figure George Bluth Sr. is simply not as compelling as Boyle's Frank Barone. Jacobs is lucky to receive the nomination, and McFarland, a previous winner, while consistently good as Jack McFarland, has at least one more season to add another Emmy to his collection. Emmy to Garrett.
Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Comedy Series
1. Arrested Development's Jessica Walter as Lucille Bluth
2. Everybody Loves Raymond's Doris Roberts as Marie Barone
3. Two And A Half Men's Holland Taylor as Evelyn Harper
4. Two And A Half Men's Conchata Ferrell as Berta
5. Will & Grace's Megan Mullally as Karen Walker
I still think Sheridan deserves to be in this list, but since she isn't, I'll have to give standing ovations to both Taylor and Ferrell, whose nominations boggle me. Regardless, Walker's performance as Lucille Bluth is a delicious counterpoint to Mullally's socialite Walker. I think both actors' characters tend to cancel each other out, leaving previous winner and sentimental favorite Doris Roberts left. Emmy to Roberts.
Outstanding Comedy Series
1. Arrested Development
2. Desperate Housewives
3. Everybody Loves Raymond
5. Will & Grace
Emmy to Desperate Housewives. Enough said.
Thursday, September 15, 2005
Take that, Andrew. :p
FIX AND MIX FROSTY! Mmm-mm!
It's my regular Frosty, topped with white chocolate hard syrup and chocolate cookie crisps. You can also choose buttermilk or dark chocolate hard syrup and honey rice crispies or M&Ms. It's irresistibly good, the only reason why I go to Wendy's.
Sweet tooth? You can't resist. You can't resist. You can't resist.
Two nights ago, Cathy and I dined at a new restaurant at Glorietta 4. Located beside Bread Talk (replacing Pazzo, was a brightly lit, straight-out-of-Kansas-style restaurant called Heaven and Eggs. A second branch, apparently, the restaurant specializes in steaks, eggs, and all-day breakfast offerings. It was blue, mostly, with swing sets in the middle of the restaurant. Cute!
Cathy ordered a Tuna Steak meal that came with eggs and pancakes. I ordered a meal that came with bacon, meatloaf, eggs, and fries (I could feel my arteries clog).
The meal wasn't altogether bad - it actually was quite delicious, on the same level as Country Waffles for sheer breakfast chutzpah. What thrilled Cathy were two things: 1) homemade soda (they have some kind of feature that provides for special soda flavors, like bubblegum and vanilla, the latter of which she ordered), and flavored syrups.
Service was decent, food was terrific but not that memorable, and the look was quite pleasant. A nice place to take family and friends to.
Foreground L-R: Blueberries; apples and cinnamon, for toppings. Background, L-R: Syrups in maple, Coconut, Pineapple, and Peach flavors.
I admire Dove for starting the Campaign for Real Beauty. For years, women have been pressured to look a certain way in order to be considered beautiful. One has to be tall, slim and in the
Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty allows for renewing of the mind in relation to our concept of beauty. Bobbie Brown, the famous make-up guru, expressed it perfectly when she said in the Oprah Winfrey show that women must “Stop looking at what's out there. If you are constantly comparing yourself to people around you—trust me—there are people that are better looking than you, taller, skinnier, richer, nicer, more talented. Stop! It's not important. It's really about yourself."
I personally believe that beauty is not what we see on the outside. Our physical body is ephemeral. If Jesus is inside one’s heart, love and joy simply emanates outward making one breathtakingly beautiful.
Wednesday, September 14, 2005
Needless to say I was pleasantly surprised. Jay-R is a great performer. His R&B background and US upbringing makes him perfect as Ren McCormack. His vocal stylistics transformed a pop musical into a cool modern R&B show. His dancing skills reminded me of Michael Jackson and Gary V. He is a joy to watch on stage. One cannot help but admire that kind of talent. As for Iya Villania, I would say she has a good but not exceptional voice. It was obvious that she had reservations on stage. She was unable to present the rebellious spirit of Ariel, the Reverend’s daughter. In fact, she came across as a sweet farm girl trying hard to be rebellious. In a musical, one cannot be reserved. Her stage presence was so-so and she got lost in the big musical numbers.
Theater greats such as Audie Gemora and Carla Martinez were of course, excellent but Agot Isidro-Sandejas surprised me so much. I never thought that her singing voice was so pure and perfect for the stage. I think she is one to watch out for in the coming years.
The show, even with Iya Villania, was still a joy to watch because the other members of the cast were great on stage. Those among us who were teens during the 80s will recognize many of the songs including “Let’s Hear It For The Boy”, “Almost Paradise”, “Holding Out For a Hero” and the title song “Footloose”. There are also other songs to look forward to including “Learning to be Silent”, “Mama Says” and “I Confess”.
In these troubled times, watching a musical may be considered an unnecessary expense but if you have the dough and wish to be entertained in a different way this September, Footloose is a good option for you. The show is staged at the Meralco Theater and the schedules are as follows:
8pm shows- Sept 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, 17, 23, 24
3pm shows- Sept 3, 4 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, 25
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
In a nutshell, his points boiled down to the following:
1. GIVE US. God is a giving God who does not want to hold anything back from us. We, however, have the responsibility to ask. Matthew 21:21 and Deut. 8:2-3, 18 tell us what happens to people who express their desires in faith.
2. THIS DAY. Hebrews 11:1. What's holding us from asking today. This is very relevant to my devotion this morning, which comes with a memory verse from Hebrews 3:15 that tells us to listen to God - TODAY.
3. OUR DAILY BREAD. The pastor divided this part into four areas:
3.2. Purpose. (2 Cor 9:8)
3.4. Others (2 Cor 9:11, Gen 12:2-3)
When the series ends, Cathy and I will try out Christ's Commission Fellowship (across Ortigas) then Greenhills Christian Fellowship. Depending on the series we happen to catch in those respective churches, we will decide hopefully within a month's time or two, as to which family of Christ we will commit ourselves to serve Him fully.
Wow. Coming from yesterday, where I was reminded to "open the eyes of my heart" and see God for what He is and what He wants to do in my life, I'm feeling so empowered and strong! I found out that my prayer today lasted almost 30 minutes, which is highly unusual for me, because I never really saw myself praying that long. I was just burdened for so many people.
"Today, please listen; don't turn a deaf ear as in the bitter uprising." - Hebrews 3:15 God wants to talk to you, so listen up. When? TODAY.
Included in my prayers (and should be in yours, too!) are Brent Higgins Jr. and Susan Wilson, who I just found out today is pregnant! Yay oh yay! Congratulations! I promised her I would keep her in prayer daily for the safety and development of her latest bundle of joy.
If y'all need any additional prayer, just leave me a comment and know when two or three gather in His name, great things happen and prayers are answered, according to His perfect will and in His perfect timing.
Monday, September 12, 2005
Every single member of the group - Jody McBrayer, Janna Long, Melissa Greene, and Greg Long - has outstanding talent, and for them to come together is truly amazing. However, Greg replaced "Father Avalon" - the incredibly touching and talented singer Michael Passons.
Well, I just discovered the Michael Passons Official Website - he has a solo career! Yay for Michael! Someone this superblessed will be used mightily by God. I'm glad to see that he's doing great things, and still making amazing music. May God be praised.
Swing by his site, check out his blog, and please listen to his music! You'll find it refreshing, I guarantee it. Classic Contemporary Christian pop-rock with a twist.
Simple Buco Pandan Recipe
4 boxes of Ferna Gelatin (Pandan Flavor)
1 small bottle of McCormick Pandan Essence or Flavor
5-6 coconuts, meat shredded into strips (It is best to buy a “salad” coconut with meat not too soft and not too hard)
2 boxes of Nestle All-Purpose Cream
¾ cup of Milkmaid Condensed Milk
Pandan Essence or Flavor
Cook gelatin following package directions. To enhance pandan flavor of gelatin, pour in a teaspoon of McCormick Pandan Essence. Adjust the amount of essence you put in judging by how the gelatin smells. McCormick Pandan Essence is very light so you will not be in danger of putting too much. Once the gelatin is ready, pour into a square mold and cool. After the gelatin has hardened, cut it into small cubes. Fun!
To prepare the dressing, combine the cream and condensed milk. Taste for balance of sweetness. Normally, your dressing has to be sweeter than you would like because once you mix the main ingredients, the sweetness goes down. Add pandan essence to enhance the flavor of the dressing. Once satisfied, add it to the gelatin and shredded coconut. Chill and serve.
Variations: You may add small sago pearls to your buco pandan for extra texture. Cook them first, of course. :) Adding a scoop of vanilla ice cream makes it even more special. Enjoy!
1. (1) WORDPLAY. Jason Mraz.
2. (2) NEVER UNDERESTIMATE MY JESUS. Reliant K.
3. (4) FORTY KINDS OF SADNESS. Ryan Cabrera.
4. (5) YOUR HOUSE. Alanis Morissette.
5. (3) CHARIOT. Gavin DeGraw.
6. (7) SHAKE IT OFF. Mariah Carey.
7. (9) WITH YOU I’M BORN AGAIN Vonzell Solomon & Billy Preston.
8. (8) HEALING RAIN. Michael W. Smith.
9. (12) LETTERS FROM WAR. Mark Schultz.
10. (11) KARMA (Superstition Remix). Alicia Keys.
11. (15) ALL THE WAY. Craig David.
12. (17) PON DE REPLAY. Rihanna.
13. (6) IN CHRIST ALONE. Brian Littrell.
14. (10) DON’T’CHA. Pussycat Dolls feat. Busta Rhymes.
15. (20) EXCUSES. Jasmine Trias.
16. (14) INSIDE YOUR HEAVEN. Carrie Underwood.
17. (13) BEHIND THESE HAZEL EYES. Kelly Clarkson.
18. (18) TELL ME WHERE IT HURTS. M.Y.M.P.
19. (new) GROWN AND SEXY. Babyface.
20. (new) TRIPPIN’. Toni Braxton.
The Babyface album is a revelation. After the hiccup that was Face2Face, the master producer and chanteur returns to his romantic roots and rocks the house. My wife is so in love with his music, it's not even funny.
As for Miz Braxton, well, she's always been topnotch, and this collection underscores her club connections as well as the next diva. Her new album, Libra, is due out soon, and the first single, Trippin', is good enough to at least dent the Hot 100 (it's harder to do when you're on an indie label. Come on, Arista, dump Bobby Brown's drug-addled spouse and get with the Braxton program!).
Download Trippin' here. Ssh. ;)
It's a catchy song (as expected, I've always maintained Darkchild Jerkins is an underappreciated genius), and he makes Banks sound like a cross between Beyonce Knowles and Jennifer Lopez. Hopefully, radio will pick up on this because I like the track. Good to go, Darkchild!
Download Shake Ya Body. Ssh. ;)
Friday, September 09, 2005
15 years ago, Carnie and Wendy Wilson and Chynna Phillips went to #1 with their second single, Release Me. They would later on set a record: the only group to hit #1 with three singles from a debut album. It's a record that hasn't been broken to date.
Update: Andrew's back! And maligning Wilson Phillips, as always. Welcome back, ya old coot!
By now, you all must've heard about the delicious new I-Pod Nano!
"Take everything you love about iPod and shrink it. Now shrink it again. With 2GB (500 songs) and 4GB (1,000 songs), the pencil-thin iPod nano packs the entire iPod experience into an impossibly small design. So small, it will take your music places you never dreamed of!"
Read more about the I-Pod Nano.
Now, my mother's coming back from the US on September 15. Kung gusto ninyong magpabili ng I-Pod Nano, my mom is willing to pick one up for you. The 2GB Nano retails for US$199 (P11,144, converted at PhP56 to a US$1), and we'll take home Nanos for whoever wants at US$215 (P12,000). I don't know if Apple Philippines is already selling the Nanos, or for how much, but this is what my mom and I are offering to friends locally, so before you make pabili from my mom, please do your research; you may find it cheaper elsewhere, I don't know.
The awesome thing is this: the Nano is coming out TODAY in the U.S. That means you could have your Nano by next week, ahead of most everybody else locally. That's kinda cool. :)
Obviously, these are good faith orders, so if you're going to make pabili (shucks, I'm so conyo, ha), please have the money ready. No installment bases, please.
Let me know through email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or mobile (0920-9073962) on or before September 13 at the latest.
Last night, Cathy and I bought a pint each of our favorite Magnolia flavors: she the classic Vanilla, and I the Gold Label Dulce De Leche (Milk Candy), which is basically Vanilla with caramel ribbons.
Both were heavenly! We were just ooh-ing and aah-ing in our car.
The quality of the ice cream had significantly improved. It turns out that Magnolia "uses 100-percent milk-derived fat, which gives its ice cream the smooth texture and richer flavor. " Well, that explains it. Moment on the lips, forever on the hips, but man, I will gladly do my sit-ups, because this indulgence is worth it.
Aside from Dulce De Leche and Vanilla, other flavors we saw at Mightee Mart last night include Chocolate under the Magnolia brand, and Double Dutch and Rocky Road under the premiere Gold Label brand. Mmm.
Thursday, September 08, 2005
This year, I celebrate my sixth year as a blogger. This particular journey has probably been one of the most fulfilling of my life. How many others can say they've connected with so many people across the globe, sharing experiences, living, loving, and just being? I'm so superblessed to have met so many people along the way. Superblessed has survived four different versions (Mere Madness, Superblessed.net, the ill-fated Friendster blog) and, in the words of Barbra, I'm still here!
This year, Jesus and I celebrate our sixth year together. Ours is a stormy relationship, admittedly; I cheat on Him a lot, and it hasn't been easy telling Him sorry, every single time. He forgives me, though, I give Him credit for that, It's an amazing love, I tell you, and I am unafraid of standing on my soapbox and blogging about His goodness until the day I die.
This year, the Superblessed Christian Blog Awards turns three. Those who've been around for the whole journey know I first launched the Christian Blog Awards in January 2003 to honor the God-bloggers who blessed me immensely in 2002. At the time, when it was known as the Mere Madness Christian Blog Awards, it created little buzz but did bless Christ-bloggers who were in my immediate circle of blogs.
In 2002, these were the winners:
Most Inspirational/Encouraging Blog. Craig Tanner. Avoiding Evil.com.
Most Educational Blog. Mark Byron (MarkByron.blogspot.com) and David Heddle (He Lives).
Best Designed Blog. BrownPau. How Now Brownpau?.
Most Humorous Blog. Mark. The Gospel According to Mark.
Most Introspective Blog. Irene Q. The Musings of Irene Q.
Most Feeding Frenzy Blog. Esteban DaCubanGuy. Bakura.org.
Most Enjoyable Filipino-Christian Blog Keren. Keren.
Favorite Christian Blog of 2002. Bene Diction. Bene Diction Blogs On.
In 2003, I transferred to Superblessed and renamed it the Superblessed Christian Blog Awards. I added more categories and expanded the nominees' list; I also introduced a People's Choice option for regular visitors of the blog. I further remember a bit of controversy in the Feeding Frenzy blog category, but that's all water under the bridge, and I'm sure we're all raring to look past that. These were the winners in 2003:
Most Inspirational/Encouraging Blog. Tanya of 7 Day Holy. People's Choice: Tanya.
Most Educational Blog. Craig Tanner of Avoiding Evil.com. People's Choice: David Heddle.
Best Designed Blog. Mikks of The Son Seeker Chronicles and Keren Tan of Keren Tan. People's Choice: Mikks.
Most Humorous Blog. Michael Main of Michael Main.com and Christopher Wright of What in Tarnation.net. People's Choice: James Watson.
Most Introspective Blog. Irene Q of Irene Q.com. People's Choice: Irene.
Most Useful Christian Resource. Blogs4God. People's Choice: Bible Gateway.
Most Feeding Frenzy Blog. Josh Claybourn of Josh Claybourn.com. People's Choice: Josh Claybourn.
Most Enjoyable Filipino-Christian Blog. Jax of Jax Place. People's Choice: Rick Manzano.
Most Enjoyable Male Christian Blog. Darren Rowse of Living Room. People's Choice: Darren.
Most Enjoyable Female Christian Blog. Susan L. Prince of Sisters' Weblog. People's Choice: Irene Q of Irene Q.com.
Favorite Christian Blog of 2003. Christopher Wright of What in Tarnation.net.
Last year, these were the winners:
Best Designed Blog. Mikks Maducdoc, Mikkan.
Most Humorous Blog. Michael Main, Michael Main.com.
Most Educational Blog. David Heddle, He Lives.
Most Introspective Blog. Susan, What a Beautiful Day!
Most Useful Christian Resource. Blogs4God. (Props to Martin Roth and Dean Peters).
Best Blog with Online Discussion. The men and women of Spare Change.
Most Inspirational/Encouraging Blog. Darren Rowse, Living Room.
Most Enjoyable Male Filipino-Christian Blog. Arnold Gamboa.
Most Enjoyable Female Filipino-Christian Blog. Jax of Jax Place and Maan of My Silverchair.
Most Enjoyable Male Christian Blog (International, Non-Filipino). Galvin.
Most Enjoyable Female Christian Blog (International, Non-Filipino). Tracy, Tracy, Tracy!
Favorite Christian Blog of 2004. Bene Diction Blogs On.
This year, all categories stay the same, except for Best Blog with Online Discussion, which I'm renaming to Best Group Blog. I'm also adding an additional award: Best Photo Blog. Nominees will be announced on the last week of September (giving any of you visitors a chance to nominate someone who isn't in my blogroll, but has been superblessing others for quite some time).
Wednesday, September 07, 2005
Imagine my pleasure to find the Greatest Hits 1985-1995 compilation there at Radio City Robinson's Place Manila Ermita! The sticker on the cover said P250, so not only did I find it, I found it at half price! Yay for me, right?
Well, when we paid, the cashier typed in a different price: P280. When I protested, I pointed out the sticker in front. They then pointed out the price tag sticker at the back and said it was inventoried at P280, not P250. The Radio City Robinson's Place Manila Ermita cashier then proceeded to rip out the P250 sticker (like it made a difference!)!
Before he could rip out the entire green tag, I told him, never mind, took the CD away, and walked away. As we did, I told the entire staff rather dramatically: "I am not returning here to Radio City Robinson's Place Manila Ermita." I mean it.
Why keep the P250 sticker on the CD if you're going to reprice it? That's just going to make people (like me) feel bad! It's not about saving P30 (although frankly, it can be). It's about telling your customer two different things and deciding in favor of the customer-unfriendly thing. I was buying a legitimate CD instead of going to the pirates. This album is ten years old. Who else was going to buy it?
One of the Radio City Robinson's Place Manila Ermita salesgirls kept on apologizing profusely. If you want to show you're truly repentant, missy, go through your entire catalog and take out all conflicting price tags, so the next Radio City Robinson's Place Manila Ermita consumer buying a CD that will probably never sell again, won't have such a hard time.
They don't accept credit cards anyway, and most of the stuff they have there is back issue. I strongly encourage everyone to NOT buy from Radio City Robinson's Place Manila Ermita because they obviously don't care much about the customer there.
Tuesday, September 06, 2005
Ten Years Ago:
1. I was listening to Jagged Little Pill by Alanis Morissette.
2. I began the weight loss program that would succeed in dropping 40 pounds from my frame.
3. I began singing with ReVerse/Release.
4. I missed the Dean's List by 0.03.
5. I got my Calvin and Hobbes tattoo.
Five years ago:
1. Cathy and I celebrated our 2nd year anniversary as a couple.
2. I gained back the 40 pounds I lost ten years ago.
3. I quit Release.
4. I was promoted to Acting Director of DLS-College of Saint Benilde's College Communication Office.
5. Jesus Christ found me.
One year ago:
1. Cathy and I celebrated our 2nd year anniversary as a married couple.
2. I began the nth diet. Lost nothing.
3. I started to write songs for Christ.
4. I started Superblessed Media.
5. Nathan turned one.
1. God reminded me "love begets love."
2. Cathy made me a pasta dish that I ate today.
3. Bounce and I jammed at his house.
4. Found and bought a copy of Cher's Gold.
5. Finished four modules for work.
Five Snacks I Enjoy:
1. Pringles Salt and Vinegar.
2. Wendy's Frosty.
3. KitKat Chunky White.
4. Ruffles Sour Cream and Cheddar.
5. Kahluea Walnut Cake from Tazza.
Five Songs I Know All the Words To:
1. Hold On. Wilson Phillips.
2. Galileo. Indigo Girls.
3. Place In This World. Michael W. Smith.
4. Everything To Me. Avalon.
5. Big Yellow Taxi. Joni Mitchell/Amy Grant/Counting Crows.
Five Things I Would Do with 100 Million Dollars:
1. Tithe 10%.
2. Set aside another 10% for immediate and extended family.
3. Start a literacy program for underprivileged children.
4. Invest in a good portfolio management program for Nathan and all future Deens.
5. Donate money to stem cell research.
Five Places I Would Run Away To:
Five Things I Would Never Wear:
1. High heels.
2. Black nail polish.
3. Leather pants.
4. Sandos while playing basketball.
5. Pink socks.
Five Favorite TV Shows:
2. Perfect Strangers.
4. Desperate Housewives.
5. Will and Grace.
Five bad habits:
1. I worry.
2. I nag.
3. I complain.
4. I bite my nails.
5. I eat when I'm stressed.
Five biggest joys:
4. Mom and John
5. Cable television
Five favorite toys:
I don't really have toys.
Five Fictional Characters I Would Date:
Sorry, I really don't see myself dating anyone now that I have Cathy.
I'm tagging Ariel, Keren, Phoebe, Tina, and Boris.
Monday, September 05, 2005
I remember the points but don't remember the actual title of this three-step process. Score one against not bringing the journal to the Sunday service.
1. Recognize God's Plan. This is taken from the "your will be done" verse. The unusual thing about a lot of Filipino-Christians is that we tend to think it's difficult to ascertain God's will, when this is in fact untrue. God wants to show His will and reveal it all the time. He's our Father - it doesn't make any sense for our father not to tell us what His will is... how will we ever learn? I found that part amusingly true.
2. Rely on God's Will. Whatever His will - good and perfect as it is - is for us to take in and obey. This is very difficult to do, admitedly, especially if you're the type who likes to "set a course" or path for yourself, but I think learning to depend on God's will implies so much more than just blind faith. It's an understanding that what He wants is in fact best for you. A lot of times, I get myself in trouble because I insist on doing it my way. Ang tigas naman ng ulo (we are hardhdeaded), as the old Filipino adage goes.
3. Request God's Power. This inspires me the most. God's power is amazing, yet we always turn to prayer as a last resort, when it should be the first instinct. I look forward to God molding me more in this manner, as I develop a closer relationship with Him and draw closer to Him.
This morning, while I was in prayer, God gently rebuked me for how I handled a certain situation yesterday. He reminded me, "love begets love," just as I was asking for His forgiveness for how I dealt with two people yesterday who needed love from me and didn't get it. I felt so ashamed of myself (as most people do when shown the error of their ways). I was told specifically that these two people did not get much opportunities to be loved, and as a result, couldn't manifest love either.
If there's someone who should know what it's like to show love, it's someone who's received it unconditionally. That'd be me (and all y'all out there who know what Jesus has done for you).
Well, that's in the past, and I know that He has forgiven me for that. I look forward now to making a better impact on those two people by really showing them God's love made manifest. By His grace, I know I can do it, and you can, too.
Who do you know who needs God's love today, manifest specifically through you?