!Boo! Archuletta and Castro !Boo!

I love discoursing with people, especially if both of us have good insight on the topic at hand. These kinds of discussions have given life to several of my posts. Some of them being my post on Mainstream, Being an Irregular Student, and The Top 10 Jologs Songs. I can talk about almost anything. I have fun exchanging thoughts about movies with Shinji, My chats with Juice are not only engaging but also informative. (Last time we chatted, we talked about Business Ethics!)And of course I can depend on Rex for a stimulating conversation on just about anything!

Lately however, I’ve been having fun arguing with Mr. Fishbowl with our short YM chats.

We have similar POVs but we also have so many dissimilar likes. I don’t know, I just somehow manage to like things he doesn’t seem to. Therefore, we have a good time back sassing each other about them. It’s fun because he manages to make fun of me and my likes while I’m completely nasty towards his. A good current example would be our short cynical discussion about our AI bets…

paolo m: i'm gonna miss American Idol today.

paolo m: darn! i wanna see David and Jason. Those are my top 2

paolo m: i hate David Fuck'n Cook

Jigs: he's my bet!! :D

paolo m: i hate you… you just ruined my day

Jigs: Then my job here is done…

paolo m: why do you like him? He's a loser

Jigs: he's cool!

paolo m: oh c'mon. he's a dork

Jigs: and he's arrangements to the songs are great!

paolo m: ok ok... everyone of them can sing. Jason and David are cool and humble

paolo m: David is just an arrogant fuck. Lolz! I love cursing him

Jigs: Puh-leaze! Your David is just milking his naivete!

Jigs: And come on, Jason knows the ladies love him! That's the only reason he is still there!

paolo m: and david?

Jigs: David COOK, has talent!

Jigs: Plus, his brother has cancer man!

paolo m: you've been brainwashed… Come to your senses Jigs!

Jigs: I may be brainwashed, but you're heartless! Think of his brother!

paolo m: O c'mon David Archuletta couldn't sing for a year! And, david winning the competition
won’t exactly heal his brother

Jigs: Boo-freaking-hoo! Archuletta can’t sing for year! How tragic that is… You can't hate on a guy who dedicates his performances to his brother with cancer! Now that’s just heartbreaking.

paolo m: i dedicate his non-winning to his brother as well. Now we're even…

Jigs: Now that's just crazy…

paolo m: I know…

He’s funny, I’m nasty; he’s a bastard, I’m chaotic; he’s for change, I’m conservative (forever!); he likes Zac Efron, I loathe him. Yes, we have a multitude of differences and we constantly debate over them, but this weird comradeship thrives because of it. Personally, I think this is the stuff my friendships are made of…

So, got anything you want to talk about? Then just buzz me on my YM ID, and I'll do my best to chat you up and start a great conversation!

The Merlin Club

If you want to join, please visit Paolo's Blog. Thanks!

To Cook

In every family, there are those few people who you admire their knack for cooking. Be it your grandma, your mom or your bbq king uncle, you just can’t wait for the next family get together so you can once again savor their signature dishes. I am so lucky that I belong to a family that knows what good food should taste like. Only the freshest ingredients and never settle for mediocrity.

My Lola Mercy is one of the best cooks ever! But, I’m sure we all have grandmas who are the best cooks. She makes one mean Sisig, her Lasagna is out of this world and her Cherry Cheesecake is heaven! She also makes a wonderful Avocado Ice Cream.

If there is another person who can match, even top my lola’s cooking, that would have to be my lovely mother. Her Kare-Kare is addictive, her Chicken Cordon Bleu with a side of Cauliflower smothered with white sauce is mouth-watering, and her take on the classic Spaghetti is the best I’ve ever tasted (Italliani’s can kiss my butt!). My mom’s Escabeche is just…amazing (my dad loves it!).

“Voila! A pot pie. Wholesome, warm, healthy. That's, of course if you can live without the cream sauce. Personally, I can't. I mean, what's the point?

But there is one dish that every time I taste reminds me of home, and of my mom and my lola (because they cook the dish equally well). The feeling I get is kinda similar to the one Anton Ego gets after taking a bite of the Ratatouille. Lolz! At first, I didn’t want to learn how to make the dish because there was the feeling of comfort when somebody else cooks that meal for me. But then I realized, why not share the same feeling I get with the people who matter to me? It took time to prepare, but the result I got was completely worth it.

Lengua Con Champignon (drooling right now)

I know it’s a once-in-a-year kind of dish to eat because let’s face it, it’s not exactly figure friendly. But that only adds to the appeal of the dish, the desire for it. I’m so happy to finally be able to cook it and continue the family heritage of cooking excellence! Yeah! Lolz! You know, I wasn’t supposed to be the next cook in the family. It was my younger sister who got to receive all the training (being the constant helper during parties and meal preparations) from my mom, lola and aunts. I think it’s the passion that pushed me to learn how to cook even if it was all by myself. The kind that if I was asked, what do you want to do for the rest of your life, I would confidently answer, COOK. I’d probably be the first male cook in the family (but I do have uncles who can cook).They say, there are certain reasons why men’s cooking tastes better than women’s. One is that men aren’t so parsimonious when it comes to the ingredients. Another is that a woman’s emotion goes into their cooking which can be a pro-and-con kinda thing. I mean, based on my observation, male chefs right now are more popular than female ones. Lolz!

“I like to cook -- it's my meditation. One aims for perfection in one's life, but one doesn't find it very often. For me, this is about as close as it gets.”

But, I am just that, a cook. Not a chef. There are so many people who are good cooks, but so few who are good chefs. It’s become my dream to become a chef, but being a cook right now is satisfying in so many levels. However, being a cook, one of my weaknesses is baking. I don’t bake. If I did, then I’d be a baker. Lolz! Unfortuntely, not being able to bake limits my ability to create desserts. But that won’t stop a good cook! So here’s one of my favorite desserts that I’ve made in a while. I didn’t have strawberries so I used bananas instead.

Panna Cotta (with an extra, extra drizzle of chocolate sauce and slices of Bananas)

Tasty, delectable, scrumptious, saccharine, gastronomical, and luscious; some of the nicest, boldest, sexiest and best sounding adjectives are found when describing good food. They don’t have to be expensive, they don’t have to be gourmet, they don’t even have to be calorie laden. Good Food is whatever tingles your taste buds and gives you a feeling. Food, and cooking for that matter, is just as simple as that...

“You know, people can sleep, or they can gamble. Or they can even make love when they're miserable.

But I think that most people eat when they're happy. I like to see people happy…

P.S. Next time, I’ll tell you about how hard it is to take a good photo of food! Lolz!

P.P.S. Quotations are by Mr. Linderman of Heroes

P.P.S. I’d like to thank Paolo Mendoza for the letter “Z” in my Lolz!

A Diamond In The Rough

I found myself completely out of my element this month. Honestly, I have been delving into uncharted waters that have proven to be uncomfortable, challenging and at times unsettling. What I’m trying to say is, we all handle things differently. Our experiences and acquired knowledge gently shove us into these “comfort zones.” Humans, being a creature of habit cling to these situations because we find safety and competence in them. We avoid, fear even, those unfamiliar territories because we are stripped down to our barest. All our knowledge, all our experience count for so little that it scares us. It scares us to discover how ignorant or inept we are in the grander scheme of things.

I have been involving myself in activities I never imagined I would ever participate in. These activities may seem so provincial to you, but oh so foreign to me. I felt so deficient, so to speak. I was somehow barricaded to the world I chose to enclose myself in, and now, breaking out is unnerving. I sometimes get so paranoid that I think people think of me as weak or slow on the uptake. Maybe I feel this way because I can see that what comes natural to them is conversely as difficult for me. It gets to the point that you feel your introverted self creep in and think this would be much easier if I was left to my own devices, that I do not need anybody’s help. When in fact you do…

It can be disheartening, forcing yourself into a world which seems to reject the “staple-you.” But, I found out, there are those special few that know and see who you are, acknowledge that what you’re doing won’t be easy, and still stand by your side. Thankfully, I found those few who can get me through it all.

For the Diamonds in my life…I hope to become one…