Tuesday, 31 May 2011

the *kiligers* list

For two special people across the globe =)
I'm not very romantic. I hate Valentines Day, I cringe at public proposals and I laugh at random sweet nothings. Very few things give me the *kiligers* rush. Take me to a movie and I'd choose a crime-thriller over a romcom/chick flick (although admittedly I'm on the One More Chance and My Amnesia Girl guilty pleasure bandwagon). Take me out to dinner and I'd probably be more excited to eat and analyse the meal than listen to your story (unless you're absolutely interesting). I like cheese, but when I say this, I mean the kind of cheese you have with vino and crackers and not the one you'll need vino for and crack up about.

This is a bad thing, I know. I feel like I rarely give love a shot these days. I reckon it's because I used to wear my heart on my sleeve and when I fell off massively, I decided to be protective of it and just be more cautious about feeling too much. But hey - I'm not exactly THAT cynical. I still believe in good old romance, good old love and other *kiligers* things you associate it with. It just takes a lot to push my buttons I suppose.

The *kiligers* list:
  • Handwritten letters - The art of love letters faded significantly in this age of everything gone digital that's why I find people who exert effort to use pen and paper to express how they feel really amazing. One of my goals before I hit 27 is to send friends handwritten letters, just because I think special people deserve to feel special. It's not baduy to express yourself through signed, sealed and delivered messages. Mas baduy kaya to see 'I luv u. U & I 4evr.' on your phones.

  • Homecooked dinners - I'm pretty sure most of you know that a date involving a good meal means a good date in my book. However, to make it great, I do admire guys who prepare the meals themselves. Hindi naman kailangan that the dishes are extra extra difficult. I mean, we don't expect guys to be as skilled as Alain Ducasse after watching Master Chef, right? As long as you've taken time to prepare and to make the meal extra special that's a winner for sure!

  • Steady walks - Living in London without a driver/a car made me appreciate walking more especially in parks. I like meaningful convos whilst walking (pegging Before Sunrise/Before Sunset). People seem to articulate themselves better and seem to be more vulnerable to deep questions which makes them more susceptible to raw honesty. Plus, there's always something romantic about being in a 'journey' with someone, no matter how long and winding the roads are.

  • Handmade presents - I like pressies that are custom-made for you especially. When someone puts in the effort to conceptualise, create, cut and craft out something for you to put a smile on your face... wow. It gives a deeper meaning to gift giving, does it not?
  • Getting to know family - Perhaps this is for the 'next step' after establishing good rapport with someone. But family's important to me and if a guy gets along with my family (of course vice versa) that really gets me all cheesed inside.
See? I can be quite romantic. I can be into cheese. Except I really prefer the kind of cheese you put in your mouth more. =D

27 before 27 blog countdown: 34 more to go!

    Thursday, 26 May 2011

    Old journal entry: on moving on

         Cynicism once taught me that relationships can only give you anything but good stuff. Exhausted tear ducts that cause emotional baggage evident in bulging eye maletas. Prescription drugs (abused or misused) to lessen anxiety attacks. Beer belly. Petitions to close down radio stations that play all those not-so-mainstream songs you once dedicated to 'the one who could've been'. A box of junk - his CDs, his shirts, movie and concert tickets when he once rocked your world. A bunch of bittersweet memories that leave you sleepless during the witching hours.

         Having tried a few relationships which didn't fare as expected, I once believed that enough is enough. Compulsory nights out with girl friends (where you shun the male species out of your world, or at least try to get new ones in your world) and waste-away time through dancing-slash-alcohol went on for a few weeks until it got tiring. I hit rock-bottom when I realised how miserable I was. Despite knowing and feeling that I was okay, there was something in me that felt.. empty. It's not the idea of being alone, e. It was just really hard to control emotions, to hold back and turn ice-cold towards every new opportunity that comes along. Bitching was therapeutic but equally painful. Especially when I had solitary contemplative moments that almost threw me off to the border of insanity.

         Screw cynicism, then.

         I do not believe in your 'passed/failed relationship' theory anymore. You won't get an 1 or a 5 in the end, anyway. No INCs too, because surely, I've learned that the presence of something can't always make up for the absence of another. Relationships do not have removals either because you can't take back what was already taken away, nor what was never there in the first place.

         The beauty of trying in love is that you get to learn a new thing every new time. You get to be the scientist working on the equation or formula of happy-ever-after. The key variable may be hard to define, but you'll be aware of it once it reaches you. Trust me, honey. There's no harm in trying again. Because when you do, it'll all be worth the wait.

         Give yourself a chance. You deserve it (and who knows, he might just deserve you).

         No harm in trying, dear. You've once said it, yourself - it's all just a game, an experiment. You be Player 1, you be the scientist. Game over, try again.

    Old journal entry: beyond the partition

         I've been geeking myself a lot, relating even the most trivial of everyday things to what I've learned in uni. I cannot not look at people without thinking of cross-cultural business, not listen to any advert without figuring out a company's marketing structure, not listen to ideas without thinking public relations, etc. Surely some time ago life was fun and spontaneous. It was so laidback you'd think it's a lazy sunny day in the summer. Wasn't it?

         To justify the previous paragraph, let's be slightly academic and use Nancy Adler's stages of culture shock model (yet again). I should be in the acculturation phase already - which does make sense. It's not so hard to fit in because people are quite welcoming and Bournemouth is so beautiful (especially now that Spring's arrived). There were times that I almost felt at home. I think I actually forgot that I'm in an entirely different country. But I forget about the things that make it beautiful. Sometimes, when I'm overly stressed about uni stuff I feel my aura become as grey as the English weather.

         This morning was slightly different. I woke up from an 8-hour power nap feeling like I haven't slept in ages. The sky was so grey and it wasn't such a lovely spring day. I wasn't in the mood. Grudgingly, I went to uni and prepared my dissertation draft for a while before meeting Dr. Bobeva, the programme leader herself. I realised that I still had a few hours to spare before our meeting, so I just drove around for a bit.

         The drive was quite... similar to what I've been feeling about my life since I moved away. I don't remember the journey. I have pictures to look at, so I remember a lot of things but I seem to have left out a lot of details and now I don't know how I got here. Sporadically, small chunks of memories pop in my head and I'd think, "oh yeah!" but it's not the same. And on the surface, I don't think I am the same. The past few days have been dragging me into a black hole of coursework. I feel a bit more technical, like a wind-up toy - people had to push me to function and when the time is up, I just stop.

         Anyway. So I met Dr. Bobeva. I was a nervous wreck but we went over my research study and surprisingly, she liked it. Very much. Very, very, very much. That, I think, was the tipping point. After the praise-filled session I went to the quad, sat on the bench and looked at the sky. As if on cue, the clouds parted and the sun shone. It was a rather beautiful awakening, the clouds made Bournemouth so grey but in contrast, the sun shone brightly in the middle. I just had to say one thing: Hallelujah! Thank you Lord.

         I realised how much I missed God in my life. I was too caught up in all the senseless brouhaha in the material world and I tried to conquer life on my own. I forgot that I'm not strong enough, that no one ever is. And so I asked Him back into my life.

         I've just finished seven long hours (straight) doing more uni stuff. I still feel like a wind-up toy, but I know I'm not going to stop. Because this time I let God do the pushing, and I know He'll lead me back to the me that I love. I know He'll eventually lead me back home.

    Monday, 23 May 2011

    hair we go again

    I love my hair. The state of it decides the state of my mood. I don't claim to have the nicest hair in the world but admittedly, it's my favourite part of my body. I don't really do much to it, except for daily conditioning and the occasional colour. I don't blowdry it, for fear of getting my ends tangled. I don't straighten it because it's naturally straight already - any form of straighening will make it flat. I don't curl it for fear of burning (although I've always announced how much I love wavy hair and have thought of digiperming it once). I don't use brushes or combs because I fear I might go bald. And I love my hair too much - I'd die if I go bald.

    Because of this I'm quite picky when it comes to salons. Azta in Katipunan was the only salon I really liked. When I moved to the UK, I was pretty doomed. But I had no choice when my hair had to be trimmed - wala kaming lahing Edward Scissorhands. I've had a few cuts here and there but even Toni & Guy didn't quite cut it for me (pun intended). I remember spending way too much on three haircuts until finally some cheapy salon managed to get it right. Since then I'd always wait til my next Manila trip to go to good old trusty Azta. 

    The past few months though, I've been bored of my hair - I've had it cut and done last January and my ends needed trimming. Last Saturday, I finally decided I wanted a change in colour and a bit of a trim...

    Sunday, 22 May 2011

    to sir, with love

    When I attended college, I still wasn't sure whether I chose the right course. Because of this, I had my eye on attending Humanities 1 (Literature, Society & the Individual) to immerse myself in lectures that actually interested me and not my parents/ mates. However, when UP introduced the Revitalised General Education Program, I realised I couldn't take the course because our block was assigned KOM 1 (KOMUNIKASYON) as opposed to other BA blocks who got COMM 1 which was a pre-requisite of another pre-requisite of the elective.

    So unless I waited another year to take the pre-requisites or exerted more effort and give up training time with the UP Street Dance Club, there's just no way. During those days, dancing was such a huge part of my life (read: sanity) and despite the long hours of training after classes I was not willing to let it go. So I weighed my options and realised I can actually take Humanidades 1, the Filipino version. The only thing about this was that... I read the syllabus and got a pretty good mindfuck. Pucha naman and all that.

    Wednesday, 18 May 2011

    Cool Original

    I love crisps and you know, much of a foodie I am, I’d choose a bag of Walkers and cuddle time with you over a decent meal for comfort. But you know how much I hate Doritos Cool Original. Too salty.

    The other day while food shopping I missed you so I bought a bag, tore it open and devoured every single triangle. So that I can feel close to you.. so that I can remember the taste of your lips after movie night.. so that I can feel comforted by something to remember you by.

    I was down to the crumbs and realised that despite however many corn chips I’ve consumed, I still felt empty. You’re still far away. And that I never really liked Doritos Cool Original.

    Saturday, 14 May 2011

    in your love, my salvation lies

    day 30 - a song that makes you want to help the world

    Alexi Murdoch - Orange Sky

    One of the most beautiful songs I've heard (and possibly one of the most used songs on TV). I love how calming the tune is, how simple but strong the words are, and how simply great this song makes one feel. In a world full of unfortunate events, this song pretty much makes me believe that we are all connected children of the sun - and that we will eventually find salvation in each other's arms.

    And so this 30-songs-meme challenge ends. I hope yous all wake up to an orange sky. =)

    Friday, 13 May 2011

    what in the world can make a brown eyed girl turn blue?

    day 29 - a song from your childhood
    Roxette -The Look

    My dad loved Roxette. I remember listening to their albums on repeat during roadtrips. Uso pa casette tape that time, no CDs yet. I wasn't really into them and was absolutely disturbed by Per Gessle's hairstyle. I learned to appreciate their songs and other than good old Pretty Woman's It Must Have Been Love, I'm sure everyone's familiar with Dangerous, Listen To Your Heart and Joyride. This one's my favourite, though. Such a catwalk favourite then, I'd imagine. And if you're unlucky enough you'll probably hear me (trying to) sing it in the shower. Har.

    Thursday, 12 May 2011

    What a wonderful life now all aligned

    day 28 - a song that makes you feel inspired and creative
    Greg Laswell - What A Day

    I just love how this song feels so hopeful and inspirational despite the uncertainties and wordplay - when I listen to it I can't help but be reminded of how much some of us have and how much we can all give to those who have less. 

    The first line never fails to bring a smile on my face and to uplift my spirits (what a day to be alive). It makes me feel that all the drama I'm getting are just mere bumps on the road and that I still have more things to be grateful for. Like being alive for another day to actually be able to make some sort of change, or to touch someone's life. Like surviving tragedy and being able to rise from the fall. Like having a day off to do something productive or nonsensical or whatever tickles your fancy. 

    Every new day is different, I suppose. And every new day is a chance to do something to make your life better. ;)

    Wednesday, 11 May 2011

    i need someone to put my trust in

    day 27 -  a song you wish you can play
    Newton Faulkner - I Need Something

    Newton Battenberg (not the cake!) Faulkner may not be one for looks but he's an amazing musician. His debut album Hand Built By Robots (includes Dream Catch Me, a cover of Massive Attack's Teardrop, the shamefully short but brilliant Sitar-y Thing and All I Got) is ace, with his straight-on vocals and beautiful lyrics and his modern folky-alternative vibe. I heard this song ages ago whilst shopping at H&M Regent Street (good tunes!) and I was kicking myself because I didn't have Shazam or TrackID on my berry so I just had to track the words down and Google them when I got home. Loved it. And love the whole album too!

    Speaking of great guitar hits, another tune I'd love to play would be Prince's solo on the Beatles' classic While My Guitar Gently Weeps. Check out the suit, and the rockstar attitude. Amazing.

    Tuesday, 10 May 2011

    What would you say if I took those words away

    day 26 -  a song you can play on an instrument

    Extreme - More Than Words
    When I was 11 I asked for a guitar for my birthday because I was so in love with this song. Nevermind Nuno Bettencourt's and Gary Cherone's nakaka-insecure na long hair (uso naman yun before!) in the video. I wanted to play this song. I (painfully) taught myself how to read chords and bought heaps of song books and sheet music. The first song I ever played in confidence was not even a song, but an advertisement jingle. When I finally got better I decided to tackle the guitar tapping bit. It's quite easy naman pala if you're really dedicated and passionate about learning.

    Unfortunately my attention span flew off to sports and erm, boys, haha. So my skills are undercooked. I can still read chords, but like my old guitar gathering dust in my parents' old attic, I'm quite squeaky and in need of tuning. This song, as well as other songs I can still play the intro to, but I'll need a song book to remind me of the chords. Otherwise, I think I'll forever be your intro-girl ;)

    Monday, 9 May 2011

    i would like to be your girlfriend so i could dump you

    day 25 -  a song that makes you laugh

    Darwin Deez - Bad Day

    I love the redemption line in the end. =D

    Sunday, 8 May 2011

    And I will never, never, never grow so old again

    day 24 -  a song that you want to play at your funeral

    Van Morrison - Sweet Thing

    Van Morrison's Astral Weeks is a music library staple at my parents' house and this track is possibly one of the songs I've been constantly listening to since birth. I think I've pretty much I want this played at my funeral because the words are just so apt and because death, albeit sad, really is a sweet, weet thing.

    The Lewis Brothers' cover is an awesome piece too, with a more subdued, mellow feel:

    Saturday, 7 May 2011

    sleight of hand and twist of fate

    day 23 -  a song that you want to play at your wedding

    Vitamin String Quartet (Tribute to U2) - With or Without You 

    U2's version is definitely one of my top 3 favourite songs of all time. I wrote this snippet somewhere some time ago after watching Bono make every other girl jealous for pulling an awesome stunt in one of their concerts in Boston:
    The Right One will sing this to me, making me feel a million times luckier than the girl Bono handpicked and sang to because even if he can’t sing like a million quid I know that he will mean every word, and that out of the six billion people in the world he will always, always choose me.
    I heard the String Quartet version off a bootlegged CD in high school and have heard different songs from bands they've paid tribute to but this has got to be my favourite. Love love love this song - and though I'm not sure when I'd be ready to walk the aisle, at least I've got my wedding march figured out. ;)

    Friday, 6 May 2011

    well are you getting over while I'm getting by

    day 22 - a song you listen to when you're sad
    Chungking - Following

    In truth, when I'm feeling the blues, this list comes to mind:
    That album is an awsome downer-slash-pick me upper. You feel sad because the songs wail for you in a way you can't imagine but you feel slightly safe because someone else has been in your shoes. Chungking's Following is one of my favourite tracks. Because usually, sadness comes with knowing that things won't go your way even when you've tried your hardest. And no, it's not just love I'm talking about.

    Thursday, 5 May 2011

    inside my head a giant screen plays every scene

    day 21 - a song you listen to when you're happy

    Francis Magalona - Girl Be Mine

    I was going to post an entirely different tune for this entry until this song blasted off my speakers and then I realised... oh yes. This was THE ONE. I remember hearing this when I was too young to even comprehend what the song was about (okay, perhaps I had an inkling but yeah...) and loving it because of the tune. One of those songs you listen to when you just feel good. Like waking up with the sun on your face and it's breezy outside. Like having a late night out with your friends and crawling under your sheets sober enough to remember everything. Like falling in love for the first time. Like happiness. =)

    Wednesday, 4 May 2011

    now double your money and make a stack

    day 20 - a song you listen to when you're angry

    This post deserves a few songs not because I get angry a lot, but because I go through stages when I'm angry - and by angry, I mean really really angry. It takes a lot to push my buttons but when they do I am almost not myself.

    Tuesday, 3 May 2011

    But I said it so you'd feel involved with the song

    day 19 - a song from your favourite album

    New Radicals - I Hope I Didn't Just Give Away The Ending

    Maybe You've Been Brainwashed Too was such an epic album. I saw You Get What You Give on MTV and bought it the next day. I remember playing it on loop for ages that my dad would often say I should really get a new CD to listen to. I did buy more CDs but I always end up playing MYBBT when I get tired of the new ones. Very few non-'best of' albums have that effect on me (K's Choice - Almost Happy '02 Release, DMB - Crash, Bamboo - Light Peace Love, Eraserheads - Circus, U2 - The Joshua Tree to name a few).

    The band was long gone after MYBBT and this song, albeit unreleased, has been one of my favourites from the album. Excuse the long as blurbing on the intro. It actually is part of the song. ;)

    Monday, 2 May 2011

    faster than you'll ever know

    day 18 - a song you wish you heard on the radio

     Citizens - Avalanches

    I wish the Citizens get signed already! I used to work w/ bassist Ed Smith (spot him in his onesies and his beautiful wife dancing in fishnets) and when he said he was in the band A and I made sure we caught them at their gigs. I've been to a few and I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised with their sound - commercial enough but distinctly relevant. One day maybe we'll all hear them on the radio. Can't wait to catch them at their next gig. =)

    Sunday, 1 May 2011

    take your time, take your sexy time

    day 17 - a song you hear often on the radio

    Chris Brown feat. Benny Benassi - Beautiful People

    With the Rihanna issue and the tantrum on Good Morning America, Chris Brown is now officially resident douchebag of the RnB world. But you can't blame the guy for blasting catchy, radio-play-worthy tunes. This one's different from his tracks and clearly a favourite.