Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Siopao and Mami for Lunch

The few times I am in Manila I spend it with my parents and Ria.  The other day, when Ria had to do some chores, I accompanied my Dad and step-mom to lunch in Ma Mon Luk restaurant (along Quezon Ave.)
The last time I went Ma Mon Luk Ricky Martin was still with Menudo, Cory was President and Richard Gomez was still a geeky looking teeny bopper actor:

This picture frame was just one of over a dozen others plastered on a wall as you enter the restaurant.  If the owners wanted to maintain an 80's look, they succeeded.  Everything looked liked it did over 25 years ago.  It's a piece of nostalgia right in the heart of Quezon City.

Anyhoo, my dad insisted on going here for lunch because he loved the siopao and mami.  Here he is enjoying both:

Notice the concentration on his face in pouring asado sauce on the siopao (which really is the best I've ever tasted):

Nothing could stop my dad with his meal.  He continued to savor his mami while answering a text message:

My dad really enjoyed his meal over in Ma Mon Luk.  In fact, we brought home a bag full of siopao for merienda.  As for me, I fell in love with the siopao.  Masarap talaga.  grounded ng mabuti yung meat, at konti lang ang taba.  I highly recommend it.  I wish I could say the same for the mami.  Ria loves it.  I personally didn't notice anything different with its taste.  Its like all mamis I've eaten.

This entry by no means whatsoever tries to poke fun at my dad, not at all.  I just wanted to show the politicians are people also, that they do regular everyday stuff like all of us.

And at the end of the day, I don't see him as a congressman.  Rather, I see him as my dad.

Belated Happy Birthday, Dad.  Love you lots!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

An Afternoon with Carlos Primero

The faces have been blurred and the names changed in order to conceal their identities.

In my 5 years as a resident fellow of my fraternity, with all the parties and drinking binges that go with it, I had never gotten drunk.  The brods understood my situation (I had a long drive ahead of me and more importantly, I had work the next day) so they let me off with 2 or 3 bottles of San Mig Light.

Not turning into a drunk bastard after law school, I thought I would never drink more than 3 bottles of beer ever again.  I thought I would never get lasing in my life.  After all, if there's a time to be a drinker, that'd be college and law school, right?

I spoke too soon...  Story of my life.

The other day was my dad's birthday.  As usual, there were many politicos, including my fellow board members, mayors, vice-mayors and councilors (no congressmen or senator this year since Dad's birthday fell on a session day).

We had the usual birthday rituals: short program, messages from prominent personalities, the birthday song and lunch.  After having dessert, I looked at my fiance and nieces to signal them that it was time to go home.  And then someone called for me.  Oh, no. It was LCE, my boss.  He signaled for me to come over their table.  I left sina Ria and headed over there.

"Kris, come join us.  Stay here and drink with us."  LCE was with my sister Annette, 4 mayors, 2 Board Members, 1 Vice-Mayor and 3 Councilors.  I looked around the table for a can of San Mig Light.  There was none.

They were having Fundador Exclusivo.  Oh, sh*t, hard drinks.  Now unlike in the fraternity, I couldn't wiggle myself out of this one.  Not with my boss insisting that I drink with them. 

Oh, boy.

I had no choice but to drink the hard stuff.  And when we finished the bottle, one mayor brought out Carlos I, another brand of brandy.  The mayor explained to me the different levels of brandy.  At the low end is Fundador.  Next is Carlos I.  And on top is Exclusivo.  Cognac naman is a sweeter and more expensive brother of brandy.  And its not Cognac unless it was made in Cognac, France.  Most of them were not fond of whisky naman.  My colleagues just drank and drank and talked and talked.  After we finished a bottle, a new one would be opened.  My boss checked on my glass from time to time, making sure it was full.  That stuff is strong.  I had to dilute it with ice.  Anyway, this went on for 7 1/2 hours!  I think we were able to finish 5 or 6 bottles.  I couldn't drive home after that.  Ria had to fetch me.  And when I got home, I didn't eat.  I didn't take a shower.  I just went straight to bed and dozed off.  When I woke up the next day, my head was still throbbing.

That was my first official drinking session as a politician, and I'm sure as hell not looking forward to the next one.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Help me complete the list!

We always complain about the corrupt officials of government, blaming them for everything that's wrong with this country. They're the reason why the Philippines is the perennial basket case of Asia, they are the snakes, the crocodiles, the lowest of the low, so on, so fort, but have we ever thought about the honest and principle ones? 

They exist, you know. Government officials, whether elected or appointed, who believe in the system; who strive to make it work; who try to be leaders by example.

I created another multiply site to identify all those honest and principled public leaders with the desire that the list will inspire the corrupt officials to turn in a new leaf, and for all of us, to keep on believing that there is still hope that our nation can be a peaceful, unselfish, just, god-fearing and progressive nation.

Please, help me complete the list.  Click on:

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Of Circumcision and Tooth Extraction

Today, I accompanied a team of doctors, dentists and nurses in my dad's umpteenth medical mission in far-away Pallas Valley, Vintar town.  I really feel like a 5th wheel in these activities because I have nothing to offer to the patients.

To pass the time I walked around and took some pictures.

You know what they say, 'Summer Time is Circumcision Time.'  And rural Ilocos is no exception as you can see all the young boys lining up to get their pototoys snipped.  I have never seen kids so eager to have their little manoys trimmed than in this place.  It's like they woke up this morning and thought, 'I feel like having a circumcision. Hey, let's go to the doctor and have him make me a man!' Nooh-neeh-nooh-neeh-nooh.

This is a mean picture, but I couldn't help it.  The kids just walk in, put down their shorts and lie on the table.  'Ey, doc, how you doin'? See my pecker?  Care to circumcise me?'

And speaking of the tables, I wouldn't want to be the student who'd have to work on that table next school year.  Imagine all the 'loose ends' that plooped all around it. Ugh!  'Ma'am, anong klaseng eraser 'to?'  'That's not an eraser, iha...'

Another popular thing in med missions are tooth extractions.  I guess oral hygiene is not a priority for farm folk.  Our dentists had a hand full of teeth to extract today. God bless 'em.

And so that wraps up another med mission where yours truly couldn't do diddly-squat for anyone.

I am so looking forward to take up nursing so that I can be useful next time.  

Monday, April 07, 2008

Flower Economics

What is the difference between the bouquet of Malaysian Mums on the left and the one on the right?

Well, the one on the left cost me P30.00.  The one on the right costs P195.00.

Their prices differ by a hundred sixty pesos.  Thats a mark up of 500%.

Why the huge difference?

Well, the one on the left is on sale in Baguio's Public Market.  The bouquet on the right is displayed in one of Glorietta's Flower Shops.

I was in Baguio recently canvassing flowers with Ria in preparation for our wedding this October.  I had to ask the saleslady if she meant P30.00 per stem.  I couldn't believe it was just thirty pesos per bundle! OMG!  I've been cheated by H#ll@*d T*l!p$ all these years!  Ang laki naman ng patong nila!  Sobrang bukol naman yun!

... ... ...

Well, as a management student, that's just business and economics.

Anyhoo, the next time I give Ria flowers, I'll make sure both of us are in Baguio. : ) 

Saturday, April 05, 2008