s m o r g a s w o r d

Archive for November, 2009|Monthly archive page

mommy, i wanna go home!

In Uncategorized on November 30, 2009 at 2:01 pm

we went to jersey for the long holiday (i don’t understand why they call the celebration of the rape of the land of the american indians “thanksgiving”. and while we’re at it, why did pocahontas and co. not make a scene? at least we have lapu-lapu who circumcised the neck of the spaniard who almost circumnavigated the globe).

the peeps were joy’s batchmates from e&y manila in jersey assigned to e&y philadelpia. beer, vodka, and food. to the tune of dinuguan at puto, crabs, fried chicken, tokneneng, kilawing tuna, pancit, bistek, sinigang na salmon, bbq, inihaw na liempo. leche flan and cassava cake for dessert. i devoured them all and still have the space for the philly cheesesteaks from the two stores that are literally competing against each other.

the usual laid back long weekend with booze and stories and gripe. the gripes were mostly about the emperor of this great empire, the king of rhetoric and nothing more (there are now anti-o buttons in central park, if we are feeling this disappointed, how much more the locals). they are already settled on the life maybe because of the jersey atmosphere and the jersey cost of living. they are really worried as to what the future may bring, with kids and cars and all. me, i just hated new york and all its artifice and its con all the more. blinding lights indeed. i can’t wait to go home where there’s real beer and real smiles and real problems.

winter snuck up on us and it was freezing when we grabbed some famed cheesesteaks after a mini tour of downtown philly – benjamin franklin’s grave, the liberty bell, a real quaker meeting hall. the whole touristy shit. at least the cheesesteaks where superb. this alone made the weather warmer.

pat’s. for me this is the real deal. brimming beef slices and better bread. the staff were very nice and easy going too. the atmosphere was a lamon one – no attempts at gimmickry and attitude. you come here for the steak, you get the steak of your life.

geno’s. screams like a challenger brand, behaves like a challenger brand. as if for lack of any other worthwhile claim to pat’s king of steak, they just surrounded the place with neon. very american. the redneck kind. signs are all over the place about supporting the police force. there are even names and pictures of policemen as if it would somehow add what the flavor lacks. the best part: the sign that says “you are in america, speak in english”. ayos. yes, sir redneck nazi sir! now how about improving your grammar and diction first? if not for my scientific motives, i would have walked past this primitive place.

* * *

if by any chance, i become the president of the republic…

the first thing that i will do is form a 12 man covert hit squad. each will be housed and paid handsomely. all they have to do is to make sure that anyone putting the country in a bad light (massacres, scams, corruption) will get what they deserve: dead and disappeared. down to the last apo of the second degree of affinity and consanguinity. no media coverage, no police involvement, no nothing never.

tingnan natin.



In Uncategorized on November 26, 2009 at 10:59 am

the one habit that i can never seem to shake off is reading the papers (alcohol too, although there are days when i can make it through without a single drop. quitting cigarettes out of lack of choice because i am not yet prepared to die, is one of the best things that i’ve ever done).

i prefer the physical kind where ink is impressed on the fingers, and opinions, on the mind. this is how i read the papers, the way my father reads it too: first go to the opinions, then the sports, then the comics, then the news. in that order.

nowadays, due to geographic divide, i settle for my fix from the internet. and, because TODAY folded, i am left with no choice but to go to the philippine daily inquirer. while that particular paper’s news reporting cannot be questioned, its taste on aesthetics is shit. everyday, the way the masthead intrudes in the layout sends my blood pressure upwards with around 50 points. the good side is that i am reminded to take my meds daily. also, its website is still on the web 1.o. there are no comments and the link “contact us” doesn’t work. i’ve tried 3 times contacting them, first, an opinion, then a plea, then a godsdamn insult about the shitheads manning the websites. all 3 messages bounced back.


the headline this week is easily one of the worst ever printed. suddenly, all the euphoria from pacquiao’s victory is forgotten. perspective: when you are out of the country, any news does something to your pride a hundredfold. imagine making small talk and when someone asks you where you’re from and then they “educate” you about the latest news they’ve read from the new york times. motherfucking shit indeed.

the headline came with a supporting picture and the cut did its duty of telling a thousand words. as usual i went to the opinion pages and agreed with the editorial 100%. the picture needed to be there to show how horrible and horrifying the what happened was.

and now the question that is on my mind is: who should the public hang?

there are the cowards who pulled the triggers.

and there are the motherfuckers who gave these cowards the false sense of security to pull the triggers.

i suggest we start with the second.

headbanging my way to manila

In Uncategorized on November 23, 2009 at 11:41 pm

this month and the next should be about a jethro tull retrospective. then some the cure and lycia. a sprinkle of tom waits. but no. i am enjoying the better albums of slayer (reign in blood and diabulos en musica) and death (leprosy and individual thought patterns). nothing like overspeeding grindcore and growl vocals to mime the cold. it’s college days revisited once again. i just want to go home and stay put in manila. i have had it with this weather.

i am counting the days and listing ways to go about my beer offensive. pale, redhorse, premium, and maybe super dry if i can find one. there’s also food of course that are too many to mention.

yesterday, louie dropped by and we walked and talked at the park. three bands are jamming at strawberry fields. hey jude was played and some women literally cried (john lennon contemporaries, i presume).

tomorrow, maia might drop by. momofuku and brother jimmy’s time.

these are the little things that provide much needed warmth.

time for laundry.


In Uncategorized on November 22, 2009 at 1:31 pm

there is no escaping “new moon” so earlier in the week, i also watched “broken embraces” by pedro almodovar at angelika after “mammoth” by lukas moodysson.

and this afternoon, i also watched “bad lieutenant: port of call new orleans” by herr werner herzog right before pluging into the tween movie. just to steady my nerves as there are no alcohol in the vendo.

of course these atonements could never be enough for spending precious dolyares and even priceless time on the atrocity that is “new moon”.

turns out that this is even laughable than the previous installment. even the chicks are laughing. maybe it’s because of the hairless werewolves in human worm. did anybody say metrolycans?

things and thoughts at 2.23 ayem

In Uncategorized on November 20, 2009 at 2:38 pm

just finished a little gun-for-hire writing. my mind needs to slow down. the rhum is helping, of course, but the book is making it wake up with every sentence. cory doctorow is becoming the william gibson of YA.

also, i am recognizing a pettern here. is the chapterless novel making a comeback? this is the second in a month. “sandman slim” was the first.

next, elizabeth hand’s “generation loss”. there’s still a lot of other books that must be read and i think this will become a marathon if i am to finish every book before we fly home.

* * *

times square is no wi-fied for free by yahoo.

* * *

saw “mammoth” written and directed by a swede film maker starring gael garcia bernal. set in new york, thailand, and manila. a theme of personal sacrifices corporate demons. very interesting. and the pinoy cast were superb. i hope it gets to be shown in manila (here, it’s only running in one cinema, the IFC theater at the village–maybe the US have no time for guilt tripping during this troubling times, yes?). also, the weird thing is that it took a foreigner to do outdoor shots the right way (the only other time i’ve seen it was HBO’s 24/7 but that’s a docu). maybe it’s a pinoy thing, ang karpentero walang bahay, ang nanay na teacher, out of school youth ang mga anak, and our filmmakers can’t shoot location shots right in their own backyard. quick, name me a pinoy film that happened outdoors, and by outdoors i don’t mean the lahar area or some undecipherable warehouse.

* * *

praying to goods for one email. just this one, quick and painless please.

patapos na ang taon, may humirit pa

In Uncategorized on November 18, 2009 at 9:12 am

cory doctorow’s latest. 30% off through borders’ membership, even cheaper than the strand. i can wait for stephen king and jonathan lethem from the library but cory doctorow–the brain behind boing-boing and the creative commons license and the author of one of the weirdest shit i have evah read (think a boy with a mountain for a dad and a washing machine for a mum, i shit ye not)must be read. pronto. geekgasm na ito!

the concert

In Uncategorized on November 16, 2009 at 1:14 pm

i’m having too much of a boner to think of cute titles like “shamen” or “worship” or even “men in black”.


metallica in bullets.

• if the band can be reduced in a song, that would be “master of puppets”. the song that comes very close is “seek and destroy”. the rest just pales away.

• i think i am the only one not wearing a concert tee when i came in. at least i was in an all black ensemble.

• *volbeat*, a danish band, opened. heavy and trashy.

• *lamb of god* came next. very pantera of the year 2009 with the usual growl and speed. of course, the attire should match the sound. camo cut-offs and boots and wifebeater tees. i understood zero words from the lyrics except the word “motherfucker”.

• this was the most expensive 4 hours of my life. counting the ticket, the expense would come around 260 dolyares. hotdog, stella (11 per fucking glass, times 7 – and this was when i lost count), taxi, and concert tee.

• got the best seat in the house. one storey away from the moshpit. to my right and behind me are aisles so no trouble taking a piss and buying a beer. the way ticketmaster seats its customer is beyond beyond. the french chick one seat ahead of me, also alone by herself (feeling romantic to the tune “…as i wish for dead?” perhaps?) is also, of course, seated near the isle. how very considerate not to seat single ticket holders smack in the middle of groups. bravo!

• to my left was a hardcore fan who’s seen metallica around 9 times. this tour alone. the last time he’s seen them was last night. big man, long hair, tattoos, wifebeater shirt, mustache. muscle. “go wild, man, and sing to the songs,” he said to me. that was just before he checked his blackberry for an email this sunday night.

• metallica knew how to work an audience. the pauses were as loud as the noise. the blackouts were as blinding as the pryotechnics.

• the setlist were half classics, half “death magnetic”.

• they gave away drumsticks and picks almost every time a song ends. maybe it’s because tonight was the last night of the north american tour.

• they acknowledged the old ones (like my seatmate) and the virgins (like me).

• they took the time to thank everyone after the show spending some 15 minutes onstage just expressing their personal gratitude. also, the last song was rendered with the house and stage lights in full force so that “we could see each other”.



* * *

just when i thought that the blind morons pretending to be art directors at the philippine daily inquirer can’t outdo themselves, they just did.

today’s cover was the worst ever that i have ever seen. an idiot with a stick and a piece of mud could do so much better. PDI is like the windows of newspapers, they just don’t fucking care how things look.

t-minus 1 day and counting: all nightmare long

In Uncategorized on November 15, 2009 at 9:20 am

2012. a big, dumb movie that’s fit for a friday. it’s so refreshing to find a summer movie in the fall, the bait season of oscar wannabes.

woody harrelson was hilarious. the girl that’s supposed to be john cusack’s daughter looked like golum’s bastard child–she’s even creepier than esther.

*  *  *

okay, pacquaio time. stella, wings, pizza, rum. for the first time, we are hosting manny’s fight at the house over pay-per-view.

please manny, win this one. then retire.

* * *

tomorrow is metallica time! more beer!


t-minus 3 days and counting: sad but true

In Uncategorized on November 13, 2009 at 3:32 am

i wish i saw this inside a theater. with sunny.


based on a teleplay by david j. schow (author of the seminal “black leather required” and the sublime “rock breaks scissors cut”) this is a kick in the ass of horror movies.

three cinephiles set out to find a rare horror film. as students of the cinema arts, they know the tropes of horror flicks and as such, make sure that they have a cellphone (even checking for reception), gun (with bullets) and flares (plural). but everything goes down a bloody hill anyway.

what’s really cool is how the cliches are turned upside down. like the sex scenes and the nudity are shown 1/8 into the film and not as a preclimax obligatory scene, although there is that too. also the  the girl puts on her jeans first instead of running into the woods in her panties.


“you know the only thing i hate more than bad timing is actors who think they can direct.”


“that’s the worst form of transition —  a cliche — you blacked out! a time cut. how boring.”

and my favorite:

“nobody cares about that subtextual bullshit. get to the kill!”

* * *

cold. and now rain. lots of rain until the weekend. time to do some gun-for-hire writing.

still at t-minus 4 days…

In Uncategorized on November 12, 2009 at 2:21 am

just saw this piece of genius, a week and a half late.

praying rob zombie doesn’t do a remake, or a reboot, whatever.