Friday, May 28, 2004

i should travel more...

i was reading TinTin's blog and thought this was interesting...

States I visited...

create your own personalized map of the USA

Countries I visited...

create your own visited country map

i bet AnP can make the world map bleed...

what name should i have?

was reading Justice's blog and thought this was cute...

i didn't like the name but I like what it said underneath... thought Jhoiey would have been a better name for a girly, confident, fun person like me

What Name Should You Have? by Lauren

Thursday, May 27, 2004

What is LOVE?

I finally get to go home early after long days and nights at work trying to meet deadlines....


Went to the library to return some books I finished (okay, okay --- books on tape) and met Chi there to go to Aunt Jho's house for R-Jay's 18th birthday. I use to babysit for him when he was a little boy. He was my pet-cousin. I loved him to death. He was soo cute, like Dynny and now he is a grown up bigger than anyone in the family, and when I say big, I mean muscle big! Time flies....

So, I called Gene and he said he'd come so I waited for him in my car and then we'll get a ride from Chi. He arrives, still not ready and wanting to go upstairs to our apartment and get ready. Now, here's the deal... It reallyirritates me that he thinks his time is more important than anyone, he pulled the same shit with me on my birthday! He makes you wait and wait and then when he needs to go, he needs to go! It made me so mad and I told him "you know-the world do not revolve around you! you can't make people wait like that for you all the time" and I left and went to Chi's. And I wonder... where did our connection go? What happenned? We are so far detached fom each other in many ways. How can two people live together and live entirely separate lives?

The eternal question.... When is love not enough? And then I ask myself... What is LOVE?

1 Corinthians 13
4) Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5) It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6) Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7) It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8) Love never fails.....
13) And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Need I say more. This has always been my guiding principles.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Birthday Dinner caught in film

BIG 3-0!!! yeepee

the Mother that gave birth to me 30 years ago
wish she was mine
dinner attendees (Tito Pabs & Mommy)

dinner attendees (Chi & Lola)

dinner attendees (Dynn & Jhosel)

dinner attendees (Aunt Jho & Tito Rolly)

i wish...

I wish I started blogging when I had the gallery.

Back then, I had wonderful things to say. Positive and hopeful. Unlike the me right now. I read back the stuff I wrote and damn! I sound like a depressed psychopath. I mean, those were real feelings and that was how I really felt the time i wrote it. But the me back when the gallery was up and running was fascinating, insightful, full of life, fulfilled and HAPPY!

More than a year ago, we lived in Venice, six blocks from the beach in a small one bedroom w/ 2 covered parking (most coveted part is the parking, since most apartments in Venice do not have such luxury). Our life was simple and blissfull. We got closer (we had no choice, no extra room to hide in when we fight!) and we walked to the beach every weekend. I was doing alot of side jobs in architecture and we were paying half of the rent we were used to. Previous to the Venice apartment, we were renting a 2-bedroom condo in Marina Del Rey. We were doing great financially and saving quite a bit after paying of credit card debts. Our landlord sold the place and gave us relocation money. He was a real estate broker, so he showed us some houses we could afford in the area we liked most, the Westside. We were happy that finally, we are eligible to buy a house and we actually have some cash for downpayment.

Then we got an idea in our heads. See, we are both in the creative side... Him being a musician and I an artist... So we thought, either we buy a house, or we start a business! Great! We started discussing what kind of business we can get into and we started looking around for a good location. We formulated a plan and decided we will open a multi-disciplinary studio that will cater to music, art and architecture. It was a perfect idea that needed a perfect location. We looked and looked and found several warehouse style buildings that have high ceiling and big open space. We factored in several qualities we needed and decided to make it profitable, we should look for a place were we could live and work at the same time. Even more perfect!

So, we told our landlord/real estate broker that we will not be buying this time, instead we will invest our downpayment money to start the business we agreed on doing.

We found a couple of location that addresses our needs. We ended up in Santa Monica in this rear building because it had parking compared to the storefront location in Venice that did not have parking. We decided that parking was more important than storefront, besides being at the rear building afforded us extra space for extending parties outside. And the Santa Monica location was bigger than the Venice location.

We met with the landlord and to make the long story short, we settled with that place and immediately started construction!!! I've never seen Gene work so hard. I was impressed, he did most of the construction himself with some help from my Uncle, his friend and myself of course. We were working day and night to make the deadline. The only people we had to hire were an electrician and a plumber. We had to add a 220V for the electric range and add some plumbing to make way for a new shower. We were so proud of ourselves. The place looked great and it felt great!

When we finished, we were tired but we have fulfilled one of our long time dreams. The place felt like a loft in New York but we were a few blocks from the beach. Our bedroom & closet were at the mezzanine and underneath that is our living area & entertainment system. Our kitchen was to die for with stainless steel appliances and modular cabinetries.

I cannot stress enough how this was the embodiment of our relationship and all our life's work.

We had opening receptions every month and our guestlist grew from 50 to 1000 people. The receptions were so successful and although we could improve on the sales aspect, we weren't doing so bad. All the artist that we exhibit were always happy with how there works were displayed. Gene and I curated every show together and we were at the top of our games. He was also making so many new and important connections in the music part and he finished producing a friends album. The design studio was profiting as well. We have some product lines that we were carring as well.

I was about to quit my day-job to tend to the studio full time and to plan a solo show for myself when shit started hitting the fan.

And the dream went POOF --- suddenly became a nightmare....

As I go back to those days, I try and remember --- did I do anybody wrong to deserve such punishment? The answer is NO! I have been as generous as I ever was, more so that I had the means... All logic ad reason were mssing on this turn of events. And now, I am left bitter and resentful still stuck in this nightmare....

Monday, May 24, 2004

Morning After turning 30!

What was I thinking? I had this insane expectation that I will wake up after turning 30 all rejuvenated and exhilirated for another promising year that life has to offer. That all my depression and frustrations in life will miraculously vanish in thin air and never be felt again...

Was I mistaken? I woke up still freaking unmotivated as I was last week and dreading going back to work and with a Browne Pain Scale of about 6!

This has got to END!

Sunday, May 23, 2004

the BIG 3-0! weekend...


Got up at about 10 a.m. and saw that I had 12 missed calls on my cellphone. Chi and Aunt Jho and Mom have been calling me all morning!

Eric was on an early start playing his X-BOX and Gene was just getting up too.

I hurried and showered while Chi pcked up Aunt Jho from her Beverly Hills home. As I finished getting ready, they were outside waiting for me.

Gene arranged to follow after running a few errands that day and will bring Eric with him.

Instead of having steak n' eggs breakfast at Norm's and proceeding to my Mom's house to finish some painting... Mom called and said, "it's your birthday weekend, it's not right to make you paint today, just come over and we'll do something"... After a few phonecalls between family members, we proceeded straight to Mom's house in Carson where we had a yummilicious Pinoy meal consists of: rice, string beans in coconut milk, fried fish (galunggong, i think)and copped grren mangoes with thinly sliced tomatoes and bagoong (shrim paste). We then watched some old Pinoy movies (my Mom subscribed to TFC for my Lola). I was still in low spirits and bummed out and completely tired from the long hours this last week. Gene called and said he was ready to come over, when I asked him to pick up R-Jay and he said NO... I got more irritated and he said, if I was gonna act all pissy with him, he'd rather not come --- so I hang up on the bastard and he didn't show up. My dear family didn't let this ruin the day, they proceeded to make dinner plans with or without the bitter-half. We went to Nico's, a fancy french restaurant. That place was the bomb! The escargot was good and still in shells (but the one in Paris was better, of course). I ordered a seared scallops served with couscous and creme brulee for dessert.

We proceeded to a Kareoke Bar afterwards but it was only Jhosel and myself enjoying... everyone was pooped out! I love my family!

I got home and Gene and Eric were still playing X-Box.... ayayayayayayyyyyyyy

Since I got home at around 1:30 in the morning. I was tired and I overslept as usual. I was suppose to get up no later than 10 a.m. to do everything I wanted to accomplish on my special day. Since I know I had no money to go out of town like I planned to. I just decided to do some Architectural Home Tours. I had no money for that either, so I volunteered to docent on one of the homes. I got accepted and I was assigned the afternoon shift. There were four homes in that Sunday tour, so I figured if I give myself at least an hour or hour and a half, I'll see all four homes and go to my shift that starts at 1:15 p.m.

I left the house at 12 noon just in time when Melissa called and had a nice long chat with her while I drive. Of course, I can never go somewhere for the first time without getting lost. So I got lost. By the time I figured out where the hell I was, I was running out of gas. I didn't think my car would make it through all those hills if I don't fill up my tank, so I proceeded to look for a gas station... That wasted about all the time I had. I drove around each house and looked at the facades with much disappointed because I cannot see the inside. So stupid! I went to my shift and I was glad that it was the best house out of all the four. It was designed by LOh/a. Well published and house with amazing details. The four hours went by quick since I was digesting all the architectural details in the house and socializing with other folks who loved architecture.

I was starting to feel some pelvic & lower back pain but it was bearable.

I got home, rested a bit and got together with Chi. Chi, Gene & myself dropped off Eric at their house in West LA and went to Wild Thai (one of my favorite Thai restaurants). After the yummy meal and my blatant announcement to Gene of how bitter and resentfull I am of him. It was kind of rude that I did that in front of Chi and it surely shut him up of his attempts to reminisce the seven years I've lived in LA with him. Chi ignored it as usual to avoid embarrassing Gene further. We proceeded to watch a movie at the Bridge to see Van Helsing. It was very entertaining.

We got home and Gene and I watched Sopranos. If there is one thing Gene and I get along with, it's watching our favorite shows on tv....

Over all... people I loved made sure that I had a good weekend regardless of how low I was feeling. And that was the BIG 3-0 weekend.

Friday, May 21, 2004

Busy Bee

I haven't worked this hard for this firm but I had no choice this time but to do it!

I have an impossible deadline to make and I am determined to do the best I can to meet the deadline. A miracle sort of happened because eventhough the date didn't change, the scope of the submittal did. Instead of going out to bid, it will just be a check set for everyone to review. Ths would allow for a chance to straighten up the mess that is inevitable when you are rushing to meet the deadline...

This did not change the need to finish it the same way...

Let's see - Monday to Wednesday, I stayed at work till 8 p.m., Thursday I stayed till 3:30 a.m.... YES! I was going to do an all nighter but I started smelling my self and the thought of buying a toothbrush just didn' sit right so I went home, took a nap, took a shower and went right back to work bright and early today, Friday--- when I envisioned only staying till 5 p.m. I ended up staying till 9 p.m. instead... There goes my night.

Tired and frustrated, I called Chi to see if we will still go out even if I am about to pass out. This kind of schedule was fine 3 years ago but with my chronic conditions and mental instability, this is killing me!

Chi didn't pick up, I figured she fell asleep surfing the net...

I got home, tired and hungry... we picked up Eric (nephew from Gene's side) to do our family duties for the weekend... ate at Chipotle... yummy but the spicy food didn't sit righti n my tummy... stayed awake for awhile and saw CSI recorded by Gene from the previous night (we do that for each other, we are both TV addicts but can't afford TiVo for now)... Fell asleep on the couch and decided to call it a night...

I pray that the weekend is better for this Busy Bee...

Wednesday, May 19, 2004


3" x 3" oil on canvas

When there are no words...
There are colors...

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

jumping ship

Last week I got an e-mail from an old friend who was also a previous employer. I worked with him at my second job here in L.A. I was an all around person in his ceramic studio. I mold, paint, glaze, gild and load the kilns. I also helped develop some design ideas for new pieces and did some packing, shipping and general office work. I enjoyed it alot even if it was alot of work. He was a great guy who was very supportive and fun to work with. The only problem is - that career in general does not pay well compared to architecture. So I had to leave and go back to architecture.

We lost touch and last year when I had the gallery, I found him again and sort of rekindle the friendship. I always make sure to leave employers in good terms and maintain a certain friendship with them that comes in handy most of the time.

He never went to the gallery because of his schedule on his own studio which have developed to something more exciting now.

I saw him last night and we caught up on life's stories and he told me alot of his plans about the studio and about opening more studios. He invited me to jump to his ship in a way I deem fit.

That was a welcome opportunity for me. I've been looking for ways to get out of full time architecture and start a new career in the arts, and ceramics is one of my passions in life. We could get to product development and such other exciting new facets of the arts.

I need to think this through and have some sort of proposal for him on how I want to join in. This could be the way out I have been waiting for. We'll see. We did not discuss money at all and that I hope will not be an issue.

Monday, May 17, 2004

Driving Paranoia

Friday night I left my house at around 9 pm to go to Chi's and from her drive to my Mom's to pick up Jhosel. Ate dinner there and spent some time with the cutest little princess - Dynn...

Then off on our road trip. Three sisters, one van, 380 miles to go off to Arizona to pick up the life that Jhosel auspiciously left behind. Chi started the drive from Carson and I conveniently slipped into the back seat with my neck brace and bundled up with a bunch of blankets... I was trying to start Jhosel to speak up and understand what goes beyond the facade of everything is better like this . See, of all the relationships I've had - I find goodbye very difficult and divorce is almost a word that does not exist in my normal dictionary. So, to watch my youngest sister go through it with such amazing grace is very weird to me. Anyway, she was distant even if she was in the same van as the two of us. She was mostly texting her friends or on the phone with them. I didn't want to make a big deal of it because that's precisely the reason why she distance herself. I figured, she'll open up when she wants to. As for Chi, I wasn't worried with her driving, she have driven longer distance by herself and always got home fine. I fell in and out of slumber and our first gas station stop, Chi's gas card didn't work and she decided to wait till the next gas stop. A CHP (California Highway Patrol) stopped us and issued her ticket that says "straddling lanes" - never heard of that before, but she didn't argue it - she was just glad she was the one driving, for it would have been double trouble if she get caught having someone else drive the company car.

We stopped at another gas station shortly after and I offered to drive (against my will!) and Chi still decided not to get gas, this time because the place on ly takes ATM cards and cash, no credit! We've only covered a mere 100 miles... Shit! The furthest I've driven is to San Diego which is about a 100 miles...

So, I took over being the eldest and very protective sister that I am... Before crossing the border of California to Arizona, the gas meter was lit up proclaiming that we are near empty!!! I was in a panic! We still have about 40 miles before the next town that has a gas station. I decided to take action early enough since preventive measures is better that waiting for something to really go wrong. I ask Jhosel to call 911 and ask to be connected to CHP. So she did and she passed me the phone. I told the operator our situation "We are 3 girls in a van driving and we are almost out of gas and the next stop at Blythe is not in another 40 something miles, what should we do in case we actually ran out of gas...?" the operator responded and told me to make note of the signs we passed and count the call boxes after each exit sign, that will give our exact location when we stop and will be easier for them to find us... she then asked "Where are you now?" as I looked out the window to see the sign that we are about to pass, I responded with a shrivel in my voice "State Penitentiary - DO NOT STOP for hitchhikers - DANGER", she didn't now if I was joking or not but I wasn't! Why else would I freak out. I mean we were all trained self defense and I am sure we can all protect ourselves but shit, this one is for the books! The operator assured me that if I follow her instructions, CHP could get to us in no time, "meanwhile" - she said... "try to get to Blythe cruising without using much gas"

I did just that, thank God the road was downhill and didn't take much to keep it running without really stepping on it. I could feel the engine about to die any minute though. I ran out of gas before and I can feel the telltale sign of the engine dying. I prayed hard and drove easy. I was driving my sisters insane though for my paranoia was overwhelming... We made it to Blythe at the gas station and I had to pee all that anxiety that I built up.... sigh

I thought Chi would drive from here on but she sat at the backseat and went back to sleep... I bought some energy drink, played the Dharma Bums on tape told them to go to sleep and I will brave this one out. While they were sleeping, thought went through my head I didn't even hear my phone ring at 3 am when Gene was calling to check up on me.

There was this movie I saw of 2 guys in a road trip and played with a radio pretending they were girls and hooked up the same frequency with this wacko who drives a truck.... then I glanced by my side mirror and then there was this 10 wheeler truck racing me for a few miles already... I was again in panic mode trying not to glance over afraid to see the driver looking out his window right at me....

At about 4:45 am before dawn breaks, we reached out destination. I parked the car and we all went to sleep for 2 hours. Went to breakfast, back to the storage place and started loading the van with Jhosel's previous life in boxes. My heart was aching, I don't know how she is handling all this, it's all too sad. Wedding pictures, baby stuff... too much. I wasn't suppose to life anything but I ended up helping a little bit.

We were out of there in no time, about 30 minutes. Back on the road again, Chi started the drive and I slumbered in the back seat. We stopped many a times and Jhosel took over the wheel and stopped even more times than we did when Chi was driving. I tried to read a book but I was mostly snoozing. We finally got to Cabazon where the Dessert Hills factory outlet was located. We stopped by the Coach were Chi broke her wallet and then the Gucci where I wish a had a wallet to break. We thought it would be nice to have a guy buying us stuff (one girl at the Gucci store had this guy always saying, "looks good on you, I'll buy it") It was a lengthy discussion about azucaleras but I am not sure if I should blog about it just yet....

We reached Riverside and Jhosel can't drive no more, so I took over again... We got home safely and there was Dynn, product of that broken life we picked up the pieces of...

Life is tragic... or am I just paranoid

Friday, May 14, 2004

Gene on stage

manny, troy, gene

Gene getting into it...

They played at the Derby club... the band played well of course but the club and the crowd had no vibe... oh well...

Thursday, May 13, 2004

"The Belle Browne Pain Scale"

© by EBBrowne, R.N. All rights reserved. Please leave copyright intact when sharing the "Belle Browne Pain Scale" with other sufferers. Thank you.

Pain Level Symptoms:

0. No Pain.

1. Slight annoyance, irritation or both; even a slight dull ache. The pain comes and goes, is very mild and slightly effects concentration. Still able to perform all tasks normally and pain is easily forgotten while attending to something else. No pain meds required.

2. Slight pain which lasts a bit longer; still able to perform usual tasks and again, if concentration is shifted away from the pain, the pain is forgotten about. No pain meds required.

3. Pain is more noticeable, twinges come and go. Still able to perform usual tasks, but with a bit of effort. Panadol or Tylenol usually will help with this type of pain.

4. The pain lasts for longer periods, is much more noticeable and is starting to bother and interfere with concentration and tasks requiring more effort and concentration. Panadol or Tylenol taken should alleviate this type of pain; a 4th to 6th hourly regime may be required. A hot pack or ice pack may also help alleviate the pain.

5. The pain is now very noticeable, it is interfering with everyday tasks and a pain reliever is now required at 4 to 6 hourly intervals. Depending on the patient, someone with acute pain may still respond well to Panadol or Tylenol 4th hourly, maybe with added codeine and even heat or ice may help with some relief of this level of pain. For the chronic pain sufferer, this may be the start of breakthrough pain and breakthrough pain meds may start to be thought about, especially if the pain continues to get worse.

6. The pain level is medium.... heading towards strong now and it is becoming more constant and is not easily forgotten about. Pain relief is now required and it may need to be stronger than just Tylenol or Panadol, maybe added codeine may help with level of pain relief...this all depends on whether the pain is acute or chronic and on the patient's actual level of pain tolerance. A chronic pain patient may be still at this level with strong pain relief. Heat or ice may still help lessen the pain.

7. The pain level is now medium to strong and the pain is continuous. It is not relieved by Panadol/Tylenol with codeine, stronger narcotics are required for pain relief. Chronic pain patients may be at this level even with strong narcotic pain relief. Heat may also aid with relief. It is becoming harder to concentrate due to the strength of the pain and its getting harder to relieve the pain.

8. The pain is becoming unbearable, strong narcotic pain relief is required. The chronic and acute pain patient will be irritable, hot and maybe flushed, perspiration maybe noticeable or may not. Blood pressure may also be elevated. Patient may start to shake a bit. If the pain has been going on for too long, then nausea may start to set in and the patient appears to be in a lot of pain and suffering.

9. The pain now is unbearable, only strong narcotic pain relief for the acute patient will help with the pain. The chronic pain patient will be irritable, perhaps flushed and patient's palms are usually sweaty. Blood pressure is usually raised; pain relief needs to be increased and reassessed. Nausea or vomiting may be present. The patient may be trembling or shaking due to the amount of pain, moaning and groaning may be present. Whether the pain is acute or chronic, the patient is usually unable to sleep or concentrate on the smallest task.
10. The pain level is totally unbearable, the patient maybe vomiting or even lose consciousness. The patient may also become delirious, even moaning and groaning without making any sense. The blood pressure may still be elevated or by now may have dropped and the patient may go into shock. The patient must be treated symptomatically...if cold, then the patient should be kept warm; if hot, they should be cooled down. Pain relief is needed urgently. The patient may even become incontinent.

I am usually in the 8-10 scale!


(taken from

Endometriosis is a condition where endometrium (the lining of the uterus) is found in locations outside the uterus.

This misplaced tissue may be found on the ovaries, uterus, bowel, bladder utero-sacral ligaments (ligaments that hold the uterus in place), or peritoneum (covering lining of the pelvis and abdominal cavity). On rare occasions it can be found in other distant sites.


Pain may be felt :
* With period
* During ovulation
* In the bowel during menstruation
* When passing urine
* During or after intercourse
* In the lower back region

Other symptoms may include:
* Diarrhea or constipation
* Abdominal bloating
* Heavy or irregular bleeding
* Constant tiredness
* Increasing PMT


Endometriosis may also be found: During the investigation of infertility.

-If any of you have this symptoms, consult your doctor about it. Endometriosis is a serious illness.

no 911 call this time

Whenever I have a bad endo attack month. The pain is not any ordinary pain. It is comparable to labor pains, when you scream and yell and gasp for air and cannot get up! I know labor pain because I had a miscarriage once and this pain was worse than that. I fold into a fetal position and that helps me cope with pain. When I feel it's a bad month, I don't go to work because the past years, my employers have put many a 911 call because they don't know how to help me. 911 brings me to the E.R. and boom ---an instant injection and the pain is gone and I'm in heaven... That cost about $500 each drill...

Two years and many absences in this present job and they never needed the swift guys of the fire department (usually responds the quickest for 911 calls). Of course, they never get why I am always out at least 2 days each month... Until yesterday, when I made a mistake of coming in. Prescription pain pills are never meant to be taken when you leave your house because drowsiness is always part of removing the pain and I already made a mistake once of driving under the influence of Dharvocet and man!!! It was messy! At first I just went to my car and tried to rest it of, I didn't want to take any more Advil (well, aside from the fact that I finished the office supply of Advil - I am nauseated)... Two hours later, our office manager went down to get the mail and I called her, desperate at this point, I ask if she could find any more o-t-c pain reliever... All hunch over and trembling in the back seat, I waited for her come back with water and pills. That really didn't help. Another hour passed, I called her up to help me up the ladies room... So she did and I rested in there another hour or so, taking 3 more pills after the 4 I have taken in my car. I am consciously overworking my liver but what the heck--- I am in dire pain. It hurts to pee, it hurts to poop, it hurts to do nothing.

Eventually, the 7 o-t-c pills worked its miracle and I can finally manage the pain enough to drive myself home. Our office manager offered to bring me to the ER but I calmly explained to her that although I would love a shot of the injected potion, I am not willing to shed another $500 out of pocket for it and that I just need to rest it off and it'll get better (till next month that is).

So, here I am at work --- blogging, taking 2 Motrins every hour, virtually no energy, brain a mushy pile of green mess, liver screaming 'no more pills, please!' female internal organs tender and bleeding, rest of me - numb and trembling...

I have to get better... a shot of mind over matter please.... must get better.....

Gene is playing tonight at the Derby... yeepeeyeyoh

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Pinoy Soul

I have to admit, I am not so patriotic in many ways and I love the fact that I now live in Los Angeles and I don't really miss the Philippines all that much.

But, when it comes to supporting my kababayans --- that's when my true colors come out --- my Pinoy Soul comes out!

I have been a couch potato, addicted to reality TV --- that's really worth another blog... And one of my favorite shows is American Idol... Save for the first season, I have been watching it religiously.

So this season, two Filipinos who hailed from Hawaii were talented enough to make it to the final twelve and they are both beautiful and great singers, yet I have never voted even though I am a fan of the show, I let the rest of America decide their fates. Camile Velasco got voted off awhile ago and Jasmine Trias is still in the competition.

camile velasco voted off: 04.07.04

jasmine trias

Tonight, four remains and since my husband's been to band rehearsals every night since last week, instead of watching it twice (I tape it while watching and then I watch it again with him when he gets home) I decided to keep the tape rolling while I have dinner with my sister. So when Gene got home, we watched it and homegirl needs some support! Major! So, I decided my one vote would be much needed, actually 3 because we have 3 lines (1 landline and 2 cellphones) but shithead me didn't realize that viewers only have 2 hours after the show to cast their votes. Man, was I upset with myself... I wanted so much to support her even if my real favorite is Fantasia Barrino.

I think its about time that we Filipinos represent. The international mainstream music scene needs some Pinoys badly! Damn! Filipinos are great performers and amazing singers. I think American Idol will see more Pinoys in the coming seasons and I believe that that show can raise the bar for Pinoy talent recognition immensely!

I hope Jasmine gets enough vote to stay in the game. It'll be tough competing with the soul sistas but what the hell. She can do it! She got beaten up by the judges tonight and she actually cried... I wanted to hug her. She's only 16 and I am sure, if she doesn't win, she'll still get a record (or even acting gig) deal and if not here, I am sure Filipino record labels are already offering her deals --- after all, she is a finalist in American Idol.

side note: Gene's been convincing my sister Jhosel to audition and I hope she does...
See... I am quite the Pinoy deep within...

Spring in New York in pictures

in the W

hugh jackman in the background

Jhoiey and Agnes

new york night out at Whiskey Bar

spring time on 5th avenue, upper east side NY

beautiful colors of spring

it's an afterthought, but I finally learned to put pictures on my blog...

Vicious Cycle of Insanity

When I was younger, I use to laugh at women who blames PMS for their psychopathic nature during and around their menstrual period. Now, I can't laugh no more because I finally realized what the hell is wrong with me!

Every so often, I feel blue! Depressed and full of anxiety... even suicidal at times. Every minute negative feeling is amplified like a hideous monster in front of me. I cry a lot not knowing why. I find reasons to get upset and withdraw from normality.

By no means am I normal in every sense of the word. But, behold when hormones boil... I am unredeemable from my own biased sorrows...

A few years ago, I was diagnosed with Endometriosis. This was after a few calls to 911 by co-workers who can't figure what to do with me when my pain starts. I can't stand up and walk straight, and my whole body trembles with debilitating pain. Coupled with insuppressible depression. To control the pain from endo, I had to take the pills but when I do - it makes my period less painful but it gives me major migraines. Now, if I have to choose the lesser evil. I'd take the endo pain which lasts about 2-4 days, a week the most but it only occurs once a month, while the migraine happens at least 3 major times a month lasting 4-5 days straight and all the migraine medicine I've tried so far have made me fall asleep.

I've been noticing that before the pain starts, I go through this insanity and psychopathic tendencies. One doctor wanted me to take mood altering drugs but I refused to be legally drugged everyday of my life. I have happy moments. I don't need to be artificially happy all the time. It's enough that I become dependent on pain pills when the physical pain becomes unbearable.

Happiness is but fleeting and so is any other emotions for that matter, be it positive or negative.

I just worry that this vicious cycle never stops....

Monday, May 10, 2004

Rediscovering the Library

It's been years since I visited a library.

A few weeks ago, when we were walking in the neighborhood--- my sister Chi decided to drag me inside one. The Donald Kaufman Brentwood Library which is part of the Los Angeles Public Library system. Boy was I surprised on how advance its been. It never dawned on me till then that the public libraries have entered the 21st century! That may sound naive but I just never thought!

Anyway, I have since then became a member and have borrowed my first audiobook. Vittorio - by Anne Rice. I am almost done listening to it during my morning and afternoon commutes.

Everyday, I go to the libraries website to search their catalog and place books on hold and get this --- it doesn't matter which library has it, you can arrange for it to be picked up from the library of your choice. How f***ing kewl is that! I can finally catch up in my readings...

Salute to this great new system. Salute to the Internet that made all this possible.

Weekend for Women Only

Revlon Run/Walk for Women Los Angeles was last Saturday. I didn't go with Gene to a party the Friday prior so I can sleep early and be able to get my ass of off bed and do something I really wanted to do. I went to bed at around 1 a.m. and Gene rolled in home at around 2:45 a.m. I first opened my eyes at 6 a.m. but decided to get a few more minutes sleep. I finally rolled out of bed by 6:45 a.m. took a quick shower, grab a quick microwave breakfast and a glass of orange juice. I was suppose to meet a couple of people with their other friends by 7 a.m. but I decided that I am doing this for my own cause and I don't need to be with people I now to do it. I left the house at 7:30 a.m. Traffic wasn't so bad until I was about to exit the freeway and of course everyone was going to the venue. Parking proved difficult to find but I eventually followed where the crowd of hurried walkers were coming from. Into a parking structure I went and convinced myself that I have always done things by MYSELF and actually enjoyed doing it ALONE. A few deep breathes and I was on my way.

The runners were suppose to start at 8:45 a.m. while walkers at 9 a.m. I was just walking pass the start line on my way to the t-shirt pick-up when the clock hits and the runners were sprung to action! I was late, but I was THERE! As I was trying to find my way around the coliseum compound, this lady who wasn't registered yet, saw the lost look on my face and asked me if I would like to look for the registration area with her. I polite nodded and asked her name. Diane, my new found friend. We stuck together through the whole walk. I waited for her to register even if I was already registered. She was a lady of 55 and full of words of wisdom. Now, I asked myself "why do I always make friends with people who are about my mother's age and never my own age?" It seems like I level with them more...

Needless to say, we finished the race with good time, a medal (well, everyone who crosses the finish line gets it! But I am still proud of it) and a new found friend! The Eagles were playing at the coliseum while we gathered our complimentary snack packs and water bottles. I saw the 2 guys that I was suppose to meet and they were still waiting for their other companions. I quickly said my hellos and introduced Diane them. They didn't think I made it there. Oh well... Diane and I decided to walk back together to the parking structure and exchanged contact info, promising each other that we'll walk again together. Must keep in touch...

When I got home... Gene and Eric (Gene's brother's son - our nephew) were playing X-Box... The rest of the afternoon were spend lazily and uneventful... Why do I let it so?


mother's day lunch @ san antonio winery Posted by Hello
Happy Mother's Day! I woke up early enough to prepared some potatoes for breakfast for Gene and Eric before I got ready to meet my sister to go to San Antonio Winery for our Mother's Day Brunch. Oh, and I made sure to call Gene's Mom and ask if she got the package I've sent from Cherry Moon Farms. I usually get her and my Mom flowers but this year, I got my in-law a farmer's basket with fresh fruits, healthy candies and a bottle of sparkling peach and my Mom a gardener's tote with hand-care products and tools. So were on the phone for a while with Mama Rose, she misses her dear son. She'll be in town for a couple weeks for the nephews' summer break.

Chi and I headed to meet my family at the winery's restaurant. It was crowded and we had to wait even with reservations. It was very pleasant inside despite the location. We all enjoyed the food, the wine and the company. My Mom devised a game for the kids! Four of us (myself and 2 sisters and cousin R-Jay, Marc and Aunt Olive didn't join the group). The party was consist of Mom and stepdad Pabs, Lola (Mom's Mom), Aunt Jho, Tito Rolly and R-Jay, sister Jhosel and daughter Dennyse, Chi and myself. Now, the game was to write a poem in Tagalog for Mother's Day. Jhosel and I started writing right away and R-Jay and Chi took some cajoling. R-Jay finally wrote one in English and Chi wrote a one-liner! Chi is taking the role of the rebellious one... Granted she was sick that day but she could have just let it be our Mother's Day... Whatever? One of us always take this role intermittently. I suppose, I should just let it be. Lola was suppose to judge, but being the Lola that she was, she wouldn't choose just one winner and insisted that we all won. Funny! The party was short and sweet, unlike when we have it at Mom's house. It was better that way. Part ways before we start having silly arguments amongst one another. We all ended up buying some wine... I hope Mom was happy! We just wanted it stress free. This was the most inexpensive we've done Mother's Day in the past years. But I believe it to be the most special, coz it ended without major arguments and NO tears were shed. Except Aunt Jho's when poems were read.

Home was uneventful specially coz Gene left quite early for band rehearsals. Me and Eric left at home watching movies. I would have had a kid his age if it weren't for my miscarriage back then. I have forgotten of that, except when I spend time with Eric who recently started questioning why I stuck around married with his uncle all these years despite of the many incidents. I wonder where kids get all this things from... So impressionable at 13!

Beth (sister-in-law and Eric's stepmom) picked him up at 8:30 p.m. I was all of a sudden overcome by melancholy once more....

I tried calling people but no one was available to talk...

What do I do with myself?

I painted... I painted the colors of my sadness... Another canvas was born out of my very own dominion over sorrow.

Friday, May 07, 2004

L.A. Song


She hangs around the boulevard
She's a local girl with local scars
She got home late
She drank so hard the bottle ached
And she tried
But nothin's clear in a bar full a flies
So she takes
She understands when she gives it away
She says
Man I gotta get outta this town
Man I gotta get outta this pain
Man I gotta get outta this town
Outta this town & out of L.A.
She's gotta gun
She got a gun she calls the lucky one
She left a note right by the phone
Don't leave a message 'cause this ain't no home
And she cried
She cried so long her tears ran dry
Then she laughed
'Cause she knew she was never comin' back
She said
Man I'm gonna get outta this town
Man I'm gonna get outta this pain
Man I'm gonna get outta this town
Outta this town & out of L.A.
It's all she loves
It's all she hates
It's all too much for her to take
She can't be sure just where it ends
Or where the good life begins
So she took a train
To a little old town without a name
She met a man
He took her in
But fed her all the same bullshit again
'Cause he lied
He lied like a salesman sellin' flies
So she screamed
It's a different place
But the same old thang
It's all I love
It's all I hate
It's all too much for me to take
I can't be sure where it begins
Or if the good life lies within
So she said
Man I gotta get out of this town
Yeah now I gotta get back on that train
Man I gotta get out of this town
I'm outta my pain
So I'm goin' back to L.A.

This song I dedicate to all people burnt out of LA ---or any big city for that matter....

Today is another day...

I am on the verge of finishing 2 side projects that I want out of. Feeling of relief that it's almost finally over is bathing me with hope that this dark chapter of my life will be over soon.

The landlord case is over, we didn't win as forewarned by lawyers who told me that landlords always win in situations such as ours. Even if we have lost the case because of the unfair justice system. We know in our hearts that we lost fighting for our principles and we didn't just sit there and take it from them. It is a true malady of sorts but the knowledge of TRYING even in the hardest circumstance made us winners in our hearts. It still hurts to know the outcome of course, but we can finally put it behind us and move on. I still believe that there is better justice served in the afterlife.

Gene said the other night, "Don't worry baby, the worst is over, it'll start getting better from here..." I whispered, "Wake me up when it gets better..." He didn't hear that and it's better that way. The strength of this partnership was always with me and showing how weak I feel now will not help him conquer the battles we are fighting.

So many supportive words have been uttered and each have been appreciated in a hopeful day as today.

Tomorrow will be another day....

Thursday, May 06, 2004

LOST in the City of Lost Angels

Through the years I have become more sensitive, envious and jealous. The once care-free, fun-loving, no-holds-barred, happy-go-lucky person that I was, is gone! I try to look for her once in awhile, I know she's hiding in me somewhere. The glitter in my eyes that was so apparent when people look at me is now hazy with doubt and guilt at the same time. My once uninhibited demeanor is now calculated. These are facts very hard to admit to. But I find myself looking at others and asking why am I in the predicaments I am at and they seem happy.

What is happiness anyway? A euphoric state of mind, temporal in nature, yet everyone's everyday goal...

The few people I call friends are distant and indifferent. The one's near by are more distant and apathetic mostly. Shrouded with cynicism and confusion.

I am more conscious now than ever before of what people think and react, which in my early years would be laughable, really! What happened to my "I DON'T FUCKING CARE!" attitude towards life and people in general. When did I start caring if people accept me or not? When did I start looking at the mirror and not liking what I see? When...? When...? When...?

When I discuss such concerns to my other half, he simply would say - "L.A. would do that to the strongest of human being." What does that mean? What can L.A. or simply a place do to a person that could turn you in some disgusting-green-eyed-dwarf of what was suppose to be human? This is insanity.

I use to know what I want and better still, I use to know how to get it. Now, I feel like a sorry loser who cannot answer what I would need tomorrow. I never left anything to chance and now, I am floating in space hoping someone would rescue me. All my dreams are on a standstill, in infinite retribution, unsalvagable from the unknown.

Yesterday, in an office get-together for "Cinco De Mayo" --- I yearned to be a part of them, like I always was... but instead, I felt left out... I even made an effort by cooking chicken adobo for the afternoon's potluck with margaritas and cerveza. As if it was not obvious enough, even my food got left out. At least we'll have more food at home. There was no conversation I was let to join in. It was nothing short of miserable realization of how I don't belong...

I am thankful to God still, for giving me sisters who will never judge me, no matter what. What will i do without them?

These are days I wish I don't exist. It's not good to feel LOST. Lost in the land of opportunity. In the land of milk and honey. In the land of other Lost Angeles...

Monday, May 03, 2004

Spring in New York City

We left Long Beach Airport at 5 p.m. and got to Aukland a little after 6 p.m. waited there till about 9 p.m. to see if we could get in to the flight to JFK but there was too many stand by's for that flight and we didn't get the chance to be one of the lucky ones. We left the airport and went to Day's Inn to stay the night to try again Friday morning for the 7 a.m. flight. Chi's ex picked us up from Day's Inn and drove us to SanFo for a late dinner. We went to a diner with a waiter that sucks and decided not to tip him because, not only did he suck, he was rude and abrasive. He ran after me! All of us made that decision together, but they decided to run ahead of me to the car since we saw the waiter ran after previous customers. I had to tell him what was wrong and he gave me the minimim wage speech to make me feel guilty. I wasn't guilty because I believe that no matter what your job is, you have to give your best specially to customers/clients because they could make or break you. I blame what happened that night for my bad karma today... but I want to talk about New York....

New York is like my mistress... I am passionate about the city but would not leave L.A. to live there.

We took a cab from the airport which was a first since we either rent a car (which we did 10 years ago!) or we take the shuttle to the subway and take the subway to Manhattan. Which we thought have more character... My sister's friend Patty lost her camera in the cab... We stayed at the W Hotel in Time Square (47th & Broadway). The center of the action. The W was everything I expected and more. It was cool! I think it's a pre-requisite for their employees to be good looking cause each and everyone who works there were either so handsome or so pretty!!!! We got there at 4 p.m. and after checking out our room and facilities, we went to the TKTS across the street from our hotel and bought same day tickets for "The Boy From Oz" which stars Hugh Jackman, had a cheap lunch and met Paul's brother, we then went straight to H&M for some quick shopping and of we go to see our Broadway show, it was 2 blocks from our hotel!

The Boy From Oz was better that good! Hugh Jackman was amazing in it. It's the first time I didn't fall asleep watching a musical. It was that good! It wsa the life story of Peter Allen, great songwriter, ex-husband to Liza Minelli, turned out to be gay and died of AIDS in the early 90's. The song "I Honestly Love You", sang by Olivia Newton-John was one of his. We tried to wait outside to see if we could get a glimpse of the hot Hugh Jackman but it was taking too long and we had to get ready for our next itinerary... So we just took pictures in front of the wall where he had a larger than life image on it.

We asked the concierge of what the hottest clubs in Manhattan are because we were going to club hop... The old Limelight is back but with a different name, he mentioned a few other but I could remember now. We just ended up below the W which was simply called the Whiskey. Normally a $20 cover but because we're hotel guests, we get in free! We got drunk and we went crazy on the dance floor. I behaved though, a just danced with Chi's gay friend Paul, so I could be as wild as I want to and not worry about leading him on. It was so nice to just go straight upstairs to our room and not needing to take a cab or the subway. The Dj was great that night, too! We got hungry afterwards so we went downstairs and had some hotdogs and kebabs on the street.

The following day, we got up late... I can't remember the last time I slept that good. The beds and pillows were all down feather and very soft and comfy. We went straight to China Town and had some dimsum and off we go shopping. Don't even ask me how many purses I got!!! I am embarass to even say! We went back to another H&M location, the one on 5th and 51st. Did more shopping there... Aaaahhh! Why did I not marry rich? This is soooo much FUN! It's been awhile since I shopped like this... I am very guilty but who cares... I work my ass off...

Back to the hotel and my ex-coworker/friend from Lor Calma called to meet for dinner. She lives and works in Manhattan. I was excited to see her. Except for longer hair, she looks exactly the same as I remember her. We went to Blue Fin (restaurant at the ground floor of the W) and had some fancy meal. We talked alot about architecture and everyone we know. She's doing well. She's got her own architectural rendering firm! Cool! She left and it was already about 1:30 a.m. I was just going to flake on my sister and her friends but they saw me when I walked Agness out the hotel. We ended up just going back to the Whiskey since it was too convenient... I didn't stay long, I didn't even drink that night. We had to get up at 5 a.m. to go back to the airport. Chi was the last one to come up and I had to come down get her to give her our room key. Patty got a call from the guy she met at a french bistro and so the 7 a.m. flight got moved to 11:20 a.m. More bedtime for me!!! I love that bed! I ordered in and had breakfast in bed... nice!

Back to reality and to a sucky life in hot weather L.A.

Soon I will see my mistress again and her perfect four season weather...