Saturday, November 27, 2010

I'll Excuse You While You Go And Retrieve Your Wits And Your Manners

A lot of people are afraid to tell the truth - to say "no". That's where toughness comes into play. Toughness is not being a bully. It's having a backbone. 

- Robert Kiyosaki

In the past few months, I found myself spending more time in the blogging world than in social networking websites like Facebook. Countless of times I have considered stripping down my account or going into a temporary hiatus or removing friends I don't really know IRL. But Facebook, slight and prejudice aside, is one of the inexpensive ways I can catch up on the goings-on of my tight social circle. So I held on.

Lately, I have been receiving a few alerts on a certain Facebook group I am a part of. And I have been reading quite a lot of vicious conjectures and joking remarks about a certain friend of mine. He is not actually a very close friend, per se. But he is one of the few people I understand deep down and one of the few people who share my penchant for poetic melancholy.

It is clear from the posts I have read that he is being made fun of. But knowing him, I'm sure he'd just shrug it off. If I were in his position, I'd probably be stark raving mad right now. Jokes are funny--until you become the recipient.

The problem with social networking sites right now is that people think they can say whatever they want to say because they are upholding their right to express their own opinion. They think they can talk crap and shit about you and get away with it. It's amusing, actually. I don't pity my friend because I know he can hold his own. I pity the people who make fun of him. It's been like what? 5, 6 or 7 years already? In all those seven years, haven't they learned a thing about simple kindness? Or simple consideration?

There's also this simple thing called tact. It's not rocket science. Trust me, this won't put a kink to your machismo. 

I'm sorry if I sound like a self-righteous bitch. But hey, this is my blog so I can talk about anything I want. But don't worry, I still have standards to live up to. I just tend to champion the mocked, the underdogs, the wallflowers because I have been one myself. I have been there. Believe me, It's not pretty.

For the record,  I'm not claiming to be starkly devoid of prejudice. I judge. In fact, I'm judging you right now. But I judge when it is my right to judge. And if i am not given such a privilege, I keep my thoughts in private, or in constant check so I won't end up hurting anyone. I have trained my tongue not to wag relentlessly and needlessly. I miss occasionally, but contrition is a part of my vocabulary.

I guess it's just simple maturity. It's a simple upgrade brought about by years of being harnessed in school and hours of being the underdog at work.

If you have something to say, say it. But you have to understand that there's always a better way of saying things. Don't just push and shove people out of your way because you think you are better than them. Besides, what made you think your opinion is worth more than his opinion? Conceited much?

To my friend (I still refuse to name you but I'll let you know that this is you I'm talking about), just continue being a pillar of strength. Someday, they'll come to terms with the fact that you are a force to be reckoned with. You go right ahead and ignore them.

Outfit Details:
top: style
polka-dotted skirt: unbranded from a local department store
shoes: Korean brand
bag: thrifted

The Corruptive Influence Of Shakespeare

This bud of love, by summer's ripening breath,
May prove a beauteous flower when next we meet

- Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare

Jeans, shorts, skirt or dress? Flats, wedges or heels? A woman's wardrobe choice is anything but vignette. While it easy to don textile materials over your meat suit, keeping an attractive facade while maintaining comfort is a never-ending dilemma. There's always your comfort, your mood, the weather and the amount of walking to do to influence your wardrobe decisions.

In my case, I'd always wear something pretty when I feel my worst. Like those days when I feel bloated (thanks to my unreliable pancreatic activities that make hormone imbalance virtually inevitable), or when I feel downright under the weather, I'd just get my pretty polka-dotted brown dress, wear a petticoat underneath (in addition to other unmentionables), curl my hair and I'm good to go. 

This day is a sterling example.

I have quite a few nasty pimples taking up residence on my face, hence the excessive use of the beauty shot feature of my camera. 

I think I have previously blogged about the rustic old stairway at Michael's place. There's something about the burst of wild plants, the unkempt surroundings and this make-shift gate that beckons to me. Come to think of it, I really do find it ironic that I get to live near the beach and Michael gets to live in an area with an overabundance of botanical life. I think he is more the beach type of person whereas I am more of a forest-lover kind of person. I grew up watching Mary and the Secret Garden and Alice In Wonderland, not Baywatch. Not that Michael watched Baywatch during his younger years, or did he? 

But anyway, I digress. 

I brought this old Romeo and Juliet book as a prop. It was a few of the books I managed to save from my Mom's old college stuff. At least I thought it was hers. I wasn't really expecting to use it but in between whipping up some epic Spaghetti, we had a bit of photo op. 

I have to say Michael's an excellent point-and-shoot photog. But he has to be considering the amount of cream puffs I am feeding him. And let's not forget to credit my admirable nagging skills. haha! Forgot to take photos of the cream puffs though. They look quite tasty although I can only finish one.  Myk seems to have a bottomless stomach for that stuff. 

I took some photos of Myk too just in case you're curious of his camwhoring skills. We had quite a few similar shots. Kindred spirits much? :) It's actually me demonstrating what I wanted the photo to look like. haha! See how my nagging skills worked?

He was actually traipsing all over the area barefoot so I had to crop this photo. But don't tell him I revealed his secret! XD jkjk.

Don't you just love old books, polka-dotted dresses, a supportive boyfriend and laid-back days? I certainly do. With the chaos that is my life pretty much from Mondays to Fridays, simple moments like these are really worth immortalizing.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thrift Shopping Is A Vice

I was out thrifting yesterday. Yes. On a Monday afternoon. I was restless the whole day and all I wanted was to work off the restlessness by thrift shopping. And I just remembered the vintage blue vest I saw (but didn't buy) and I wanted to go back and buy it. Unfortunately, someone else bought it first.

But I wasn't too disappointed because yesterday's haul was more than a bargain. I was able to find the cropped slouchy granny-like top featured in the photo, a white cropped sando blouse and utilitarian like navy-blue vest which, according to my sister, looks good with the flats she saw in another thrift shop. Naturally I had to cave in. Again. Me and my monumental lack of self-discipline.

I wasn't able to take photos of the other stuff I bought. I had a pile of work-related things to do today so I didn't get a chance to take photos until a few minutes ago when the sun has already graced the other side of the Earth. As it turned out, I managed to make a mess of my bedroom. I have to clean up the clutter later.

After scouring thift stores yesterday, I went to the grocery. I found Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar! The other grocery I went to last Friday didn't have Bragg brand of ACV. I have started my detox regimen today. As a result of the numerous reviews I have read about the miraculous health benefits of Bragg ACV regimen, I was actually expecting it to stink when I first opened the bottle. But to my surprise, it actually smells like sukang iloko. If you are a true blue ilocana like me, you wouldn't even bat an eyelash about the smell. When I was younger, I used to drink left-over sukang iloko like a drunkard in a tavern. I will drink it until my lips turn white and someone will scold me and stop me from further damaging my esophagus!

I have yet to see the results people are raving about. But hey, this is just my first day of ACV regimen. Hopefully it will work. I need the extra energy and the detox and the extra calcium.

So yeah, that's about it for today. Catch you later! Comments and messages are welcome. /spewing hearts to all <3 <3 <3

Friday, November 19, 2010

The Boy Who Lived

Photo epic fail. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is the only Harry Potter book I have. And I had to use it as a prop because I am corny like that and because I think it will be relevant to what I am going to write today.

I have to admit, I wasn’t really looking forward to watching Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. There’s a sense of unreality/denial that it is finally coming to an end. We are finally saying adios to the characters we have virtually grown up with. But what the heck. I have already read the book so…

The first part really did justice to the book. To divide it into two movies was a spark of genius. In doing so, they were able to capture the dread and the grief, the forbidding atmosphere, the hopelessness and despair. They are all there – it is almost tangible. 

What I loved about it was that it wasn’t overkill. Not even the music. There was this part when they Harry, Ron and Hermione were running from some bounty hunters (who eventually took them to Lucius Malfoy). I was expecting some sort of dramatic musical arrangement to build up the suspense. And they were like throwing spells here and there and the three protagonists were running for their lives. But there was no music. Only the hushed stirring of the exchange of spells. It was so effective. I was pretty sure that’s how near-death experiences feel like. You can’t feel anything except the rush. You can't see anything beyond the blur. And you can’t hear anything except the frantic beat of your heart. And you grip the edge of your seat in dreadful anticipation that someone might get struck by a green light and he or she will just drop dead. 

And Dobby’s death was nothing short of gut-wrenching. It brought tears to my eyes. I thought Dumbledore’s and Sirius’ deaths were a little anticlimactic. But for some reason, Dobby’s death was more heart-rending. Maybe it was because he was such a little hero who wanted nothing but to be a good friend to Harry. Or maybe it was the fact that it wasn’t his battle to fight but he chose to save Harry and his friends. Since his character was introduced, most people overlooked him because he was just an elf. And it was a touch throat-burning that though he could have been just a background character, he was given a special role. Harry cried, of course, having lost a special friend. But just silent anguish. Like he couldn’t cry anymore because of the deaths he had to witness (I mean seriously, he was like there in all the deaths of the major characters of the book—his parents, Sirius, Dumbledore, Snape).

I can’t wait for the next part. I would like to see more of Ginny and Neville. I’d like to see Harry, Ron and Hermione as grown-ups with kids. 

So, if you haven’t seen the latest Harry Potter film yet, you should get your butt to the theatre pronto!

PS: Gomen ne, I'm not the best medium for words. Forgive my lack of eloquence. As it turned out, I am still in awe of this movie.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Never Too Silent, My Dear

"they sometimes enjoy solitude,
and can be robbed of speech 
by speech which has delighted them.
The deepest feeling always shows itself in silence" 
- Marianne Moore 
photo source: Aleyn Comprendio  

Until last night, I haven't realized how much of a solitary creature I have become. I can be with dozens of friends or in a roomful of people and I'd still feel unwarranted loneliness, I'd still feel gauche and out of place.

There are weak moments when I would envy flighty people. I think it is easier to be around people sometimes. You can't hear your thoughts. You can't second-guess yourself. You just let others make decisions for you. I know a lot of people who seem to thrive no matter who they are with. I used to wonder how it feels like to be widely-acquainted. To know that no matter where you turn to, you always have a group to go to – to be with different people with different versions of personalities.

I think it is exhausting. It wasn't too long ago when I have dispensed with the need to fit in every group. I guess my social ineptitude has risen to the surface. Most of the time, I'd prefer to stand back and view the chaos other people seem to dwell and find comfort in. I'd be silently amused by the trappings of superficiality—of man's endless needs to please others, to do things that adhere to social norms.

I guess I'm a solitary creature by choice. I am drawn to others who are as solitary as I am. Perhaps it is because I know better now— that being alone is never tantamount to being lonely. Maybe this is just my peace and serenity-loving nature asserting itself. But I reckon I'd rather feel alone than flit from one group to another, thereby confusing myself in the process.  

Saturday, November 13, 2010


In a typical dasa-kawaii look, one can wear socks with a pair of formal or trendy shoes. As you know, wearing socks was hardly runway-worthy in the past. You wear it with sneakers or a pair of mary janes when you go to school. But today, you can pair it with sky-high heels, wedges, loafers or even oxfords. 

Quick Trivia: Dasa-kawaii came from the Japanese words Dasaii and Kawaii - two incongruous terms. Dasaii means unstylish or terrible looking ('baduy' in our vernacular). Kawaii is the opposite, directly translated as cute. 

I used to think I am confused when it comes to my fashion palate and preference. Having donned this ensemble today, I have pretty much removed all doubt. 

I have another pair of this same style of oxfords but in black. I tend to buy things in different colors especially when I know I can pair it up with a lot of outfits. The black one killed me the first time I wore it. I did a lot of walking that day though so i couldn't really put all the blame to it. Surprisingly, the brown pair was more comfortable--that or my feet have suddenly developed a taste for constricting footwear.

I bought the faux straw hat for only 50 PHP (1 USD). I snipped off the tacky mesh fringe and got myself a makeshift can can hat! The price for can can hats has ridiculously soared since it became a popular fashion accessory. There was a time when it was only considered a part of British/Australian high school uniform.

I wish I can wear dasa-kawaii outfits all the time without garnering awkward stares which I honestly think translates to "what the heck is she wearing?". But whatever. Dressing up is all about making yourself feel better. And if feeling better means not being one of those who succumb to the commonplace, by all means I'd be the odd-man-out-who-gets-awkward-stares forever.

Anyway, I spent my afternoon with my boyfriend, Michael. After eating a hefty late lunch, my stomach suddenly waged war. We went home early and spent the rest of the afternoon learning new songs to play on the guitar. I *think* i'll make a cover soon. Hint: something country. something Taylor Swift. haha!

That's all for today. Do let me know what you think. Comments, e-mail are welcome. Goodnight world~!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Love In The Afternoon

Love In The Afternoon, Lisa Kleypas

Perhaps the most poignant and heart-rending historical romance novel written by Lisa Kleypas is the last book in the Hathaway series, Love In The Afternoon. It stars the youngest Hathaway sister, Beatrix, who has a profound love for animals and Christopher Phelan, a celebrated war hero.

I was quite reluctant to read this book mainly because I didn't want to let go of the family that has captured my heart--the Hathaways. In comparison to the Wallflower series, I felt more attachment to the characters in the five books.

I actually prefer Poppy's story but there is something about Bea and Christopher's story that snatches a piece of your soul. It is like one of those Shakespearean love stories we have come to love in the past century but without the tragedy.

It all started with a letter. Christopher signed up to become a solider and join the war against Germany in Crimea. He wrote a letter to Prudence, Bea's best friend. Prudence, known for her shallowness, could not get past the lurid details of battle Christopher described in his letter. But Bea, being very receptive to deep emotions and hidden feelings instantly knew Christopher's need for someone to talk to. She urged Prudence to reply. But Pru being a shallow girl couldn't summon any interest to Christopher's plight. She then gave Bea permission to write a reply in her stead.

That precipitated the exchange of letters. You can feel Christopher's transformation from a carefree British nobleman to a hardened and embittered soldier who has seen and caused a lot of deaths. His need for someone to heal the cracks in his soul is palpable in his letters. He craves for the normalcy and peace of the life he has left behind. And letter by letter, Bea has sought out to create a semblance of hope and happiness to his battle-scarred existence.

And that is when you fall in love.

Christopher didn't know it was Bea writing the letters. He thought it was Prudence. After the battle, he went home to find the woman he loved in the letters. But when he arranged for a meeting with her, he was disillusioned because he couldn't find the Prudence he loved in the letters in the Prudence he met in real life.

He eventually found out that someone else wrote the letter.

At first I thought it was going to be anticlimactic. I wasn't expecting anything more comfortable than the first book, more passionate than the second, more heart-rending than the third or more entertaining than the fourth. It was a surprise to find a different tone to this book.

What Christopher has gone through is very real in this day and age. Most of us have to deal with emotional scars that take a long time to heal. Most of us have to go through difficulties to become someone else--someone better. It takes one war (literally or figuratively) to change a person entirely, to create a new perspective in life.

I was also feeling melancholic for Beatrix. Surrounded with her siblings' happy family, she is the odd-man-out. Although her brother and her 3 sisters are quick to include her in their life, you can still feel her loneliness. And the fact that nobody is offering for her hand also adds up to that. Men cannot appreciate her vitality and exuberance and they also do not share her love for animals.

But the faults and the cracks in their personalities drew them together. The war has thought Christopher how to value the things that an average man might have overlooked.

This book is a keeper, like all other Lisa Kleypas novels. I *might* insert snippets of the love letters Christopher and Bea sent to each other in the future for your reading pleasure (or not :)).

I Am Currently Reading

Currently reading Lisa Kleypas' Only With Your Love.

I wanted to take a photo of the book with an afternoon sunlight. I like how romantic and soft photos look in the afternoon. But to my dismay, it started to get gloomy and after a few minutes, it started to rain! As I write this, I can smell the pungent odor of wet dirt. I don't know about you but I like the smell of dirt. It always reminds me of summer days in May. The air would be filled with the strong scent of damp soil. It is the kind of atmosphere dreamers fit in.

I digress.

Last week, my sister and I purchased 5 Lisa Kleypas books. I have to admit, I am such a sucker for regency romance. I don't know where I have gotten my addiction to 18th century era. It probably has something to do with the emancipation of women, which I believe started in this century (no, I don't believe it started with the emergence of washing machines!). This era reminds me of how resilient women have become--how tolerant of so many absurd things. Since antiquity, we have been regarded as creatures with as much importance as a satchel--useless and dispensable. It is nice to read a few novels where women are given freer rein.

Anyway, I'm about to finish this book. I think it's a good read, a keeper. But don't take my word for it. I tend to moon over dashing-hero-damsel-in-distress kind of plot. On the other hand, it is Lisa Kleypas. She manages to break the commonplace expected in historical romance.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Nicole Warne

Gary Pepper Vintage's Nicole Warne.

The fashion industry is bursting at its seams with creative people. I wonder what young people have been eating these past few decades. There seems to be a massive influx of talented fashion bloggers, stylists, illustrators and designers. I couldn't be happier being inundated with all things pretty on a daily basis.

It is such a thrill to find fashion bloggers like Nicole. Her style is soft, feminine and romantic. I may have been born a female but I actually find achieving ethereal feminine looks quite challenging.

To add up to her burgeoning list of accomplishments, she is also an entrepreneur. Check out Gary Pepper Vintage for more of her photos and vintage-style dresses.

Pretty Dresses. Want


Please be mine. 

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Photo Inspirations

I'm featuring these photos taken by Romeika Cortez. Her photos are proofs that you do not need an upscale DLSR camera to take good photos. She used her trusty Canon PowerShot A710 IS for these.

Lately, I've been gravitating towards vintage-esque fashion style and photos. It's an instant way to prettify yourself especially when you are feeling icky or hormonal (i.e. before and during your period). The romantic style actually lifts up your somber spirit.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

For The Roses

Greetings dear readers! As you might have noticed (or maybe not and I am taking this opportunity to inform you because I'm annoying like that), I've had a bit of hairstyle evolution. So yeah, I've been meaning to change hair color since last year but I had to wait for my inverted bob to grow. I'm not too crazy about the color. I think the hairdresser didn't do a great job copying the hair color I really wanted. I think the top got a bit too light and the bottom is just not that noticeable. I'm an albino nao! T___T.

*insert long sigh* But you know me...If there are quirks, I will surely embrace them. I'll probably sport this hair color until my friend Jemalyn comes home in January and drags me back to the salon to spend some moolah.

I recently downloaded a workout video. haha! I've been gaining lbs like crazy. And I needed the extra boost of blood circulation too. I probably have anemia or something. 

Me and Michael had a small shopping expedition earlier (him scouting for a new guitar and me scouting for...anything nice). Just when I thought I'd end this day without spending anything, I saw a polka-dotted light blue skirt. I just had to have it! I'm consoling myself with the idea that I haven't really spent anything on clothes in the past 2 months. hehe :). I'm spending a lot on books though. Just recently, me and my sister completed Lisa Kleypas' Hathaway series. I'm such a sucker for regency romance. I know! Shoot me!

So anyway, hoping to hear from you guys as well. But no haterade please! Send me some love <3

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