BREAKING NEWS: Just like the punk, Chillspot is not dead!

If you’ve been following me on Facebook then most probably you knew what happened to my blog last week. Refresher course: The admins purposely/accidentally deleted my Blogger account (including this blog) without any prior notice. Pero naibalik din naman siya after about 2 hours.

I know some of my good-for-nothing friends thought that my reaction to this was a bit overreacting but they wouldn’t understand a thing ‘cos they’re not bloggers themselves. Nasayangan lang talaga ako. We have great times together, moments I will always cherish and I’d hate to think that there would come a time that we will no longer be together. *sobs*


Sunday, January 22, 2012

6:40 pm. I was blog hopping when suddenly Blogger asked for my password again which was unusual ‘cos I know I was log-in with my Blogger account at that time. But what more unusual was that hindi ni-recognize ng system yung account ko after I entered the password. It’s just a technical problem, I thought, so I opened my blog. And then - “Ang blog na ito ay natanggal na. Hindi na ito maaring magamit in the future”. It made my heart beat faster. I tried again but to no avail. There and then, I began to panic. Pinagpawisan ako ng malamig. I don’t know what to do ‘cos that was the first time it happened to me evarrr.

6:53 pm. I posted my dilemma in U-Blog pero I think no one was online then ‘cos I didn’t get any replies.

Around 7 pm. I pm-ed Mei (@meichagas. com) to ask for help but she’s also clueless. According to her, she doesn’t know how blogspot works. Shikes! Malaking problema ito, I thought. At that time, I was teary-eyed na and I was shaking. I felt so helpless. I can’t relate my problem to Mom (who was also in the living room at that time) ‘cos: first, I am she doesn’t know what to do as much as I do; second, baka magtatalon pa siya sa tuwa (read Living Inside A Pressure Cooker).

7:16 pm. The dust began to settle and it became clearer to me that my 3 year-old blog is gone. And so, followed a period of disbelief – what happened? Where did I go wrong? With no tangible answers, I consulted my 5th personality (Detective Awesome) and he came up with these 3 theories:

A. Maybe I violated a rule in the terms of services of Blogger. Breach of contract, ganun? Hala ka diyan! But I don’t think so naman. (According pa naman sa mga feng shui experts, lapitin ako ng mga court cases. Sheet!)

B. You guys know how much I love incorporating profanity, spiteful commentaries and lascivious insinuations in my articles. Maybe some of my articles raised some eyebrows and had hurt someone’s feelings.

C. Or, maybe someone is just plain envy with my awesomeness. Like an old saying goes,“ang punong hitik na hitik ng bunga ay pilit na binabato”. :D

Honestly, I shed some tears (but it didn’t have the balls to turn me into cry bitch mode).It’s probably worse than any heartbreak I had in the past. But just like any relationship that comes to an end, I need to accept it and move on. I grieved it for a while, yes, and then took the first step in moving on. I grabbed my notebook and pen and started to plan for my next blog.

Monday, January 23, 2012

1:00 am. I went to bed. I was barely able to sleep that night err morning brought about by the difficulty of absorbing all that had happened during the last 6 hours.

2:15 am. I woke up, opened the computer and attempted to log in again. And guess what happened next?

Hello there, gorgeous!

It’s back! It's freaking back! My spirits soared to an all-time high and my enthusiastic self went back on track once. Gusto kong tumambling. P%&*#$ @!= niyo Blogger, you scared the hell out of me! I thought I’ll never get to see my dashing dashboard again. But still, thank you. This incident made me realize how much I treasure this blog.


Living Inside A Pressure Cooker

I don’t know how to entitle this piece so it ended up as that. ‘Less you find “My Monster Mom” a more fitting title. Well, I don’t.

I’ve been down the past four months because I felt like I had no specific directions in my life. I felt that I’m one of those 20 years old whose clocks were ticking. As much as my family perceived that I know what I want to do in life, the only clear thing to me now is that I’m clueless.

It also doesn’t help that I’m currently staying with Mom. As odd as it may sound but sometimes I feel that our house is this huge pressure cooker with mom being the regulator. And me? The chicken that is being roasted. Don’t get me wrong. I love my mom so much and everybody, even our dogs, can attest to that. She’s wonderful. She loves us so much and do her best. It’s just that my mom is a total nagger (and this is where I disintegrate and crumble for calling my mom a nagger). Every time she nags, it puts pressure on me to do something. I’m like “I need to do this ‘cos Mom wants me to do this”, sensing that if I resist, I will hurt her feelings. The problem is it doesn’t give me much fulfillment. Yeah I know, as her son I have the obligation to please her but I also have the right and responsibility to make decisions on my own.

She always find something negative to comment on whether it be from couple of years ago and worse, something that didn’t even occurred. There’s so much to say about me I know – my eternal laziness, my messy room, my things all over the living room. But when she starts to talk and elaborate about it, oh forget it. Every time I do something wrong, she’ll scold and nag me for it so badly like I never did good in my entire life. And she’s going to recall that over and over and over again. What’s pissing me off is that she does not listen to my protest. If I’d speak out, there will be a big blow-out for sure. So now when she nags at me, I just put my mental mute button on (Shh. That’s a secret.). Was I being too arrogant and disrespectful for not listening to what Mom has to say? I am actually open to hearing opposing sides as long as that side has valid reasons which my Mom quite evidently doesn’t have.

On blogging. My Mom knows I have a blog. Actually, the whole family knows. She even commented when I published (the highly-controversial) “Dear Mr. President” which pushed me to do a little editing so all this time I thought she’s cool with this whole blogging thing. But I was wrong. The last time we had an argument, she blurted out, “Ano ba ang nakukuha mo sa pagba-blog? Ang layo naman niyan sa kinuha mong degree. Kalandian lang yan”. She doesn’t know how much pain that few words caused me. It hurts so much. It’s like she can’t fully understand that blogging makes me happy. If my younger sister prays for Blahniks at night, I pray for more blog views and comments. Seriously and please refrain yourself from laughing.

No matter what, I wouldn’t trade my mom for anybody else. I love her so much for the life and love she gave me. One thing I learned from this: Be MORE careful of my words. I realized that I need to weigh down my words and consider their impacts on others.

The other week, she was nagging about my sister’s excessive use of her cellphone. She was nagging and nagging and nagging. I increased the volume of the television to level with her voice. When all of a sudden, she turned to me and said: “Ikaw naman, ano ang balak mong gawin sa buhay mo”?

I’ve contemplated on it for days. Tomorrow I’ll tell her my decision.

Papasok na lang po ako sa showbiz. J

Shameless plug-in again. ^


# ItsMoreFun: It's not who made it first, it's who made it better

When I first saw the new tourism brand, It’s More Fun In The Philippines, I was like “wow, that’s funny!”. After a year of research, the DOT boys can only came up with this? I was totally dismayed. It seemed too plain, too lame and too generic - at least, until I saw the promotional photos, the leaked video, the website and read the future plans of Mr. Secretary. It may not be as brilliant as “Wow Philippines” but it’s not cringe-worthy. Being too generic could actually work out in our advantage if done right.

Then someone released the bomb: a Swiss poster using the same tagline, well, “It’s More Fun In Switzerland”. As expected, passed on by tweets on Twitter and statuses on Facebook, the old Swiss poster suddenly became the toast of town. Angry, flabbergasted netizens flooded every social networking site there is. I read some comments that they find this mediocre; some say a copy cat. But I think some people (read: haters) overreacted over that old Swiss ad. Seriously, I don’t think there’s need for us to make a big fuss out of it.

First off, like what I said, the line “it’s more fun in” is too generic. Anyone can use it. So it’s not surprising if it may have been used before. And it was.

Second, the Swiss poster is not even a campaign; it’s just for an advertisement. And anyone who went to school knows the difference between the two. It’s not that hard, right?

And my gosh, the ad was used in the freakin’ 1950s. That’s more than half-a-century ago for crying out loud! Seriously, who remembers that one? I doubt that the Swiss knows that they used that before.

I don’t think it’s plagiarism. I think it’s a mere coincidence that really means nothing in the end. Some stupid people just wanted to find holes in it. They search deep into details that are not significant and unnecessary. Some even came up with a brilliant idea: drop the 5.6 million-worth brand. *start of rant* Seriously people? Are we gonna spend the six years of this administration trying to come up with the most brilliant tourism brand? Why not we just let this one go so that the DOT can start with the campaign? *end of rant* Seriously the intellect of some of these people is totally questionable.

Some also suggested to just revive the old “WOW Philippines”. In my opinion, we shouldn’t. Though I admit that it’s the more creative slogan with all that wow acronym stuffs, the line seems to be a jargon to some foreigners. “The Philippines went with WOW Philippines which said absolutely nothing about their country. WOW WHAT? A few more words won’t hurt. Wow naman pare. Wow talaga. LOL. I’m almost pretty sure the one who came up with it was holding a bong! The old Pearl of the Orient is one of the best I have ever heard.” ~ Pisanu, Thai-Belgian blogger (bisean.blogspot.com). Besides, the campaign was poorly executed. I barely saw its ad spots on the television unlike the “Amazing” or the “Truly Asia” ads that were being advertised every 5 minutes and 36 seconds. And besides, the former website makes me wince.

Hell, enough with the bad vibes. I told you that I wasn't satisfied with it at first but slowly fell in love with it as I walked through the possibilities and here are the reasons why.

7 reasons why I think the new brand and the campaign could work out

1. With billions of words tossed every minute of every day, I’m glad they chose “It’s More Fun In the Philippines”. The idea of making a tagline is pretty brilliant. It’s what will make us stand out. It is not as conservative as what you might prefer but it does set a different tone than existing slogans. So thumbs up DOT.

2. The slogan itself is a good punch line. It can be an actual part of a conversation. It comes out naturally, not forced. And what I also love is how I can use a bunch of lines as a segue into the slogan. I’m just wary that some stupid people may end up using it to a negative or sarcastic effect.

3. And the banig-inspired logo? Ah, I can’t think of a more perfect logo. I really don’t mind if the country is in color yellow. It’s well designed and not a pain the eyes. It gave the whole look a different effect on the viewer. Again, a breath of fresh air.

4. The website is also commendable. It gave me a festive-vibe. I dunno, maybe because of the banderitas and all which I think totally captures the feel of our country. I can’t wait for it to be officially launched. Excited much. I hope they would provide more-specific information about our attractions like tour packages, hotel accommodations, convenience of transportation and stuffs. Online reservations would be a plus, too.

5. What I personally love about the new campaign is that it encourages people to be part of the whole campaign. It’s a silly but a brilliant idea. Personally, I had fun tweeting about it. I can extend it anyway I want. Yes, we may not have the tourism budgets of the Thais, Singaporeans or Malaysians but we have Twitter and Facebook userstons and tons of it.

6. Mr. Secretary himself. I love the way he defended his work, no “yung satin mas makulay, may tarsier at may sun” bs. It shows maturity. This only happens when you have competent people in the government and not a bunch of air-heads. Hear that President? And he has a twitter account, yay!

7. And if you people don’t know, there's such thing as “truth in advertising”. The line maybe simple but it’s honest and direct to the point. No bs or whatsoever. Overly pessimistic netizens won’t succeed for the simple reason that the line is so real, it’s so us. I, and every Filipinos around the world, knows that “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” so don’t argue.

I think this is worth giving a try. Of course, it takes much more than a catchy slogan to bring tourists to our shores but I think if the slogan is the start, then this is a great start. I’m really excited for the international launch in April. I can’t wait for the promotional vid to be released. (For the record, I love “Forever Young” and “If you’ve waiting, you’ve been waiting for long” ads, both from NZ.) I hope that they can come up with a song that can go viral. And if “It’s More Fun In The Philippines” is shouted by a celeb at the end of a highly-stylized commercial, all the better!

Give the new slogan a rating: (+/-)

A. I can’t think of a better slogan. Two thumbs up DOT!
B. It’s million times better than the previous attempt but still WOW Philippines is the bomb.
C. Nice try guys. Back to the drawing board.
D. WTF, Pilipinas Kay Ganda for the win!
E. Fuck you DOT! Bow.

Shameless plug-in. :)


21 Things I'll Do Since I'll be 21

Inspired by Ate Chyng’s “A Goal Without A Plan Is Just A Wish” list, I started off 2011 by writing down 11 random things that I have to accomplish within the year. The legit goal is to completely finish everything on the list by 11:59 pm December 31, 2011. The list went like this.

○ Learn Photoshop – PARTIAL SUCCESS! My sister downloaded Adobe Photoshop CS5 a few months ago but I just started to use it last month. I started with basic, Tumblr-worthy stuffs. In fairness, I’m quite satisfied with the outcomes but I know I can do better. So practice, practice, practice. Next project: a new blog banner.

○ Grab my second license – SUCCESS! Passing the test really means a lot to me. I’m not just satisfied with my score. Ewww, ang baba lang. I kind of deserved it though. Anyway, I got another license this year – DOH-HEMS Basic Life Support Health Care Provider. Bongga!

○ Get a job – PARTIAL SUCCESS! I won’t go into detail anymore, I know you’re just too sick of that story. Me too! Lol, I’m so bitter.

○ Give Mom a decent gift on her birthday – FAIL! I was broke then. I gave my mom a grocery spree last Christmas but I think it didn’t count.

○ Watch 20 movies in theaters – FAIL! I managed to watch only four movies this year, 2 local (No Other Woman & Praybeyt Benjamin) and 2 foreign (X-Men: First Class and Real Steel). Still, 2009 is my best “movie-watching” year.

○ Get a phone – SUCCESS! It’s not a high-end phone but it’s definitely thousand miles better than my old one. My former phone was so overused and outdated, I used to refer it as the “jurassic phone”, that I’ve wanted to get rid of that phone (without feeling guilty) since 2010. So just imagine my delight when I accidentally lost my phone on a bus. That’s a valid reason for Tita O to buy me a new one.

○ Buy a DSLR – PARTIAL SUCCESS! Tita A bought a Nikon D3100 as a reward to me for passing the NLE. The thing is, she has yet to ship it from Dubai. Sheeze. And the LBC people are charging her too much. Double sheeze!

○ Learn Bisaya – NO PROGRESS! I can only manage to speak a few phrases. I didn’t expect that learning Bisaya would be so damn hard. And it’s so hard to find free Bisaya tutorials online. Lol. Walang basagan ng trip, kuripot ako. Thank God, I have Bisaya friends who are ready to help me out. The only problem is I’m not a fast learner. :P

○ Corregidor & Calaguas/Caramoan – DOUBLE EPIC FAIL! But then, I haven’t travelled as much as I have this year. In a year, I went spelunking with friends in Hoyop-Hoyopan cave, enjoyed a beach in Cebu, climb Mt. Mayon, attend the Penafrancia Festival in Cam Sur and splurged with the family in a 5-star hotel. I even experienced my first airplane ride ever to Cebu City!

○ Invest in a good pair of shoes – SUCCESS! I bought a pair of black MFG shoes last September. The first time I saw it on the racks, I just HAD to buy it. I knew it was a good find. And true enough, it’s worth the money I paid for. And the 10% off was a bonus.

See? I messed up big time this year. It was barely completed, it’s pathetic really. It’s heartbreaking that I had all this time in the world to do these stuffs but I made a terrible job out of it. This year, ‘cos I still believe wholeheartedly in the power of telling the universe of what I hope for, I’m starting over. I will put those failed/partial success goals on the list for 2012, again, with a note to myself to try harder. I’m also gonna add 21 new, random things to do. I know some of the stuffs that I have in my list are too common for others and embarrassingly it may sound but I haven’t done them before.

# 1 Gain at least 20 pounds. I really, really have to do this year. I’m planning to enroll myself in a gym class (please refrain yourself from laughing); but I still have to study and choose the best program. And in connection with this, I really have to work on my discipline. Masyado akong tamad!

# 2 Read at least one book per month. My only problem is that I tend to read a lot of books at the same time and it takes me forever to finish one.

# 3 Purchase DVD of “FRIENDS”. Yes, the complete 10 season. Shikes! That would cost me a lot, like thousand bucks but I don’t care. This is for Phoebe and her smelly cat. :>

# 4 Seriously start with my savings program. I have to think of the future ‘cos I’m not getting any younger. I’m 20 for crying out loud and still, I’m broke. I have 3 ATM cards but only one has funds (if you call a few bucks a fund). Shikes! I also need to be more frugal whatever that word means. I’m a compulsive shopper, just so you know, and I’m not proud.

# 5 Be published in a magazine. I never really thought about this but after a friend asked me to write for their college magazine, I gave it some thoughts. But because I’m ambisyoso, I want to write for a widely-published magazine. Hello Garage Mag, I’m here!

# 6 Meet a blogger. I’ve been blogging since junior high but I’ve never met even a single blogger’s soul. Shame on me. So I’m really looking forward to meet my blogger buddies. Really.

# 7 Write for a cause. I’ve been writing loads and loads of nonsense stuffs in my blog. I think it’s high time for me to incorporate my passion to write in supporting NGO’s. #TheAwesomeGivesBack

# 8 Take part in a charity event. In college, I’ve been involved in a lot of outreach programs and charity works. I really miss that. Nothing beats being a help to others. #TheAwesomeGivesBack

# 9 Learn how to use a DSLR. I have to start with these, I’m thinking of three; one, buy photography books (pricey); two, enroll myself in a photography class (again, pricey); three, talk to a travel photographer (afford!).

# 10 Go to Manila Ocean Park. Don’t you know that I’m a fan of underwater creatures? I want to go and see the wonders of the Tubbataha. But for a broke man like me, this is the closest thing I can get. I hope to bring my family with me.

# 11 Join a fun run/marathon. Trust me, I’ve been wanting to take part in the Milo Marathon since 2010 but to no avail. I really admire their advocacy.

# 12 Watch an Azkals’ game live. If you’ve been following/stalking me for a while now then you prolly know that I’m an Azkals’ fan. But I’ve never been to one of their games. Shame on me, again.

# 13 Refresh my wardrobe. My current wardrobe is rather monochromatic. My clothes aren’t colorful. I try to minimize my look and I’m boring like that. I hope to add, at least, some colors in my classic black-and-white (+ gray) wardrobe.

# 14 Get a Blackberry/Samsung Galaxy S. *drools* Honestly, I don’t know how to get one of these. (I’m broke nga, di’ba? Paulit-ulit, paulit-ulit? UNLI?!) Maybe I just need to be a good boy. Di’ba Tita A?

# 15 Go back to my birthplace and see the Hot-Air Balloon Fest. We used to go to Clark to watch hot air balloons when I was a kiddo but since the time we settled here in Bicol, we never got the chance to see the huge balloons again. *sigh*

# 16 Write for another blog. I want to get out of my comfort zone and write in someone else’s blog. I think it’s pretty cool. Besides, it’s also one way of promoting me. Lols. Who wants to be my host?

# 17 Try lone backpacking. Because, hell, why not? I love doing things alone. I often go to the movies or shop alone. So, why not travel alone? I would like to go somewhere I have never been to before like Batanes, Batad or Palawan. This is where the saving program is badly needed.

# 18 Learn how to cook, at least, 3 dishes. If you think that I’m the typical lazy teenager who doesn’t know how to cook, then you’re right. But I don’t want to be a cliché anymore *with full conviction*. And someone told me that “a way to girl’s heart is through her stomach”. I agree.

# 19 Go out on a date with an old friend. We’ve been planning this since October but, for some reason (my fault actually), it didn't push through. I don't want to call this a date before 'cos I have a girlfriend then, but now it's really a date. (Newsflash: we both had a crush on each other in 6th grade. Aww.) Let’s see how this goes.

# 20 Go ziplining somewhere. Thank God, I'm not afraid of heights! And besides, ziplining fees in the country are quite cheap.

# 21 Decide on my future. This is maybe the hardest thing to do. Honestly, I’m pretty clueless now. I don’t know if I’ll pursue a master’s degree, change careers or just enter showbiz. HEEEELP!

This is a longer list compared with last year. For real, I’m going to take a serious whack at it this year to make up for my pathetic attempt last year. I’ll give myself until 11:59pm December 31, 2012. The ultimate goal, though, is to have fun!