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:: Shut My Mouth ::
On numerous occasions, I've complained about not knowing who reads my blog. Yes, I'm a bit paranoid... and this is why, up until a few months ago, I didn't mention any names here. I got tired of playing that game, but one fact remains the same... I really wonder who actually reads my blog. I don't obsess about it every minute of every day, but it does pop into my head every so often. Obviously, it's on my mind now.

A comment on a recent blog, along with a bunch of others on another site, brought back this sense of... well... I'm not really sure. Basically, like I've mentioned already, I wonder who reads this crap.

I'd like to think I know most of the people who read my blog... I don't think it really offers anything of interest to a stranger. The fact is, however, I'm deluding myself. I have no control over who gets a peek (albeit a very small peek) at my life, simply because I've posted this online. I don't even have the satisfaction of knowing exactly who these voyeurs, if i may call them that, are. I'm... umm... I don't know. The words that come to mind are familiar to my friends already... I'm a control-freak. I know that not knowing things is a form of losing control, and I'm freaking out. Damn... this is not fun.

Ok, I'm tempted to ask everybody who reads this to comment... but I'm not particularly fond of that idea either. I'm really not sure, despite all my claims, if I want to know who my audience is. It may be that I'm just flattering myself. What if I do know everybody who reads this blog? Do I really want that kind of blow to my ego? Another word comes to mind... indecisive. An indecisive control-freak... not a pretty sight.

Oh, I just realized... just now, I've exposed myself to more scrutiny than I have in previous entries.

:: Movies, Movies, Movies ::
In a recent blog, I mentioned a bunch of movies that I had seen recently. For most of the week, I didn't add to that list... that is, until yesterday.

Yesterday, I saw a bunch of sick & twisted films, or at least portions of them. I saw, in order, Ichi the Killer, Erotic Tales (which includes Music, NR. 23, and The Gallery), Eurotrip, and Jackass the Movie. Some titles, I'm sure, are already familiar. I know that some already have an idea of how much perversion I was exposed to in the past 24 hours. The fact remains, however, that I need to vent out a little. Just telling you the titles of the films isn't enough... I have to tell you just what I saw.

Ichi is about tortured souls, torture, and in some weird, messed up way, growth and maturity. I really don't know what to say about it now except that it is the product of a very sick mind... an amazingly brilliant mind, I have to admit, but still, a sick, sick mind. After all the S&M (which reaches the point of body mutiliation and even downright murder), the gore (ever see a face peeled off somebody's head?), and other eye candy (the really sour candy), I was left pretty much speechless. All I really could do was say that it was a twisted film... and even then, I knew it was an understatement.

The series of Erotic Tales currently showing in CineManila exposed me to less gore and a bit more comedy... but roughly the same amount of... well... let's just say, as the title suggests, it still wasn't very wholesome. I missed most of the first film, Music, but I did catch the other two.

NR. 23 should have been sexy... but for some reason wasn't... at least I didn't think so. I noticed that it combined a number of elements that, in other films, as well as in real life, are pretty sexy. It involved a pottery wheel (Ghost), a sexy older woman(Unfaithful), and Honey (need I mention any movies?), just to name a few. The overall effect, however, was bordering on comical. Now, back to the film itself... NR. 23 is the story of a woman who owns a collection of dildos, most (or all?) of which she made herself. She can't seem to get one of them (no. 23 in her collection) right. She needs a model... and one rainy night, a possible specimen waltzes right up to her door. I think I'll leave the rest to your imagination.

While NR. 23 was bordering on comical, The Gallery was downright funny. I have to admit that it wasn't a laugh-so-much-your-stomach-hurts type film, but I was smiling most of the time... if not because of what I was seeing on screen, because of imagining just what would happen next. Just imagine a middle aged man standing outside a lingerie shop (which is in the middle of a mall) waiting for his wife to finish shopping. He sticks out like a sore thumb, occasionally looks like a pervert, and is very conscious of everybody around him (among them, a surly, chubby bald guy with a dog). One woman (who looks like a much older Claudia Schiffer) strikes his eye, and later on does much more than flash a smile in his direction. This really isn't much of a story... but a funny situation.

Hanging out with some friends kept me from catching most of Eurotrip, but I did see enough to catch scenes involving a brother and sister make-out session, and sex in a confessional. I don't think I need to mention anything about Jackass.

For all the sick movies I saw yesterday, I have to thank one of my favorite girls, Sam. She lent me the copy of Ichi the Killer, dragged me to the movie house, and organized (sort of) the DVD night at Laurie's. If I ever go crazy from watching all of these films, I'll make sure she gets billed for my shrink's fees.

:: Malignant Malegant ::
A very vain friend of mine just got his own blog. I wonder how long he'll keep updating it.

:: Confusion ::
I'd like to think I'm pretty happy... and for the most part, I'm probably right. I haven't got much to complain about, and I've got a whole lot, in fact, to be thankful for. My problem is I don't do much of either... at least I don't think I do.

What am I getting at? I'm not quite sure yet, so bear with me.

I'd like to think that one of my greatest strengths is my ability to simply take whatever life throws my way and work with that. I'm a master of making do, of adapting... basically I'm pretty adept at diskarte. Throw me anywhere and I'll find a way to survive. Sure, I'll bitch and whine about my situation, but I'll be fine.

Now, one reason I'd be fine almost anywhere is this attitude of diskarte. For the most part, my thoughts revolve around the here and now. My attention is on the world around me. I'm usually pretty happy because anytime I look around, I'm bound to find something to help me get through my day... and hence, something to be thankful for.

Ok, you might know what I'm leading to already. If you do, then good for you. Me, I'm still not quite so sure.

The thing that bothers me is the nagging feeling that my attitude isn't very healthy. If survival is all that matters, then I'm in a great position. My problem is that I think I rely too much on what I have for my... err.. happiness.

Ok, I'm getting a bit confused myself with what I just wrote... but again, please bear with me.

My previous blog entries probably illustrate my point pretty well... partly because I haven't articulated it yet. I guess what worries me is the fact that I hardly take the time to reflect on things. Basically I'm worried about being shallow.... about my kababawan. The fact is, all I've been writing about are things that happen around me... things that are only relevant to me and a few other people. I discuss events, not what those events mean... to me, and to those I care for.

Something else just came to mind. I'm wondering now if what I'm really worried about is not my refusal to reflect, but my reluctance to share my thoughts. Now, I'm really not sure if I'm happy, but I do know that I'm fine. I know that reading my blog will tell you that much... but not much else.

Now I'm really confused. What is my point exactly? I know I tend to ramble... I sometimes think out loud instead of collecting my thoughts before talking. This is the blogging equivalent of that. This is confusing.

I guess that's everything... at least for now. My next blog entry will most probably be something a lot lighter, less contemplative. I'm not sure why... but I do know that that's the way it is.

:: Not So Cheap Thrills ::
This week, I saw, in order, So Close, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Chasing Amy, Malibu's Most Wanted, Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back, and The Ladykillers, not to mention portions of Saving Private Ryan, countless Friends episodes, and several programs on ETC, Discovery, AXN, Star, and Studio 23. I thank the powers-that-be for the Greenbelt theaters, my DVD player, and my TV. I also have to acknowledge the makers of my La-Z-Boy for providing support. Last but not least, I thank all the friends I spent several hours with in the theater, in my room, or elsewhere. This week has been fun.

With CineManila coming up, I'm probably going to spend even more time (and money) sitting in a dark room and staring at a series of pictures flashed in rapid succession. Like I mentioned before, I'm looking for people to watch with. Get in touch with me, ok?

Oh, I almost forgot... I got my car back today. It looks really nice. It doesn't have a tree sticking out of it anymore.

:: CineManila ::
CineManila is just around the corner. As usual, I have no clue what films to watch out for. As usual, I'm just waiting for my friends (you know who you are) to clue me in and drag me to the theaters. As usual, I am offering my services (remember, driver ng bayan) in exchange for tips on which films I should see... and possibly for free tickets too.

:: I Don't Believe It ::
I'm a know-it-all, and I'm usually comfortable with most things techie, but now I'm baffled.

I can't believe that all I needed to get my laptop to work was an AVR. I thought my hard drive was damaged (and I still think I should replace it), but it turns out that it might not be as bad as i first thought. Anyway, I'm just glad. I've got to wait a few days to be sure my laptop is ok though... but still, I'm glad.

[WARNING: technical information to follow]
For those who don't know what an AVR is, it is an Automatic Voltage Regulator. Basically, it ensures that the current to your TV, PC, or whatever appliance connected to it, remains steady. In other words, it eliminates most electric fluctuations. Why is this so important? Well, to make a long story short, flucutations in electric currents can cause major damage to expensive appliances.
[NOTICE: end of jargon]

:: Tragedy ::
She never complained. She slowed down, yes, but she never broke down. She always seemed healthy... tired, maybe... but always healthy. I really never expected this. All of a sudden, she was gone. A few days ago, she died beside my bed while I slept.

My laptop is dead. I'm hoping to resurrect her next week, but for now, she's just sitting on my desk and collecting disk. I feel bad. Thank goodness I have a DVD player in my room now.

- I never thought I would refer to my laptop as "her" or "she," but oh well...
- The reason my laptop is dead - the hard drive failed. I suspect fluctuations in the electric current are responsible.
- I'm wondering if anybody has a broken down laptop that I can tear apart. I want to figure out how these things are built. I'm getting bored with desktops.

:: Tequila is Evil ::
'nuff said.

:: What's Cooking? ::
The last episode of Faking It on Discovery Channel featured a self-proclaimed kitchen rat posing as a chef. Those who know me (and the show too) will understand just why this specific episode is something special. Those who don't, well...

For those not familiar with the show, the title should give you a clue. Faking It is a reality show where somebody pretends to be a chef, a model, an interior designer, a wrestler... you get the picture. For each episode, they take your average joe, train him to be a (fill in the blank) for a month, and pit him against 3 seasoned professionals in some sort of competition. A panel composed of 3 judges then rates them, and when informed that 1 of the 4 is faking it, makes guesses as to who that poser is.

I would love to be part of this show. I consider myself a jack of all trades (but unfortunately a master of none), and when I say all trades, I mean all trades. Some people think I'm a techie; most know I love driving; a few have seen me act; several have seen me play with cameras, both still and video; a few have even tasted my cooking. There are several other things I enjoy doing... and I would like to believe that I'm actually good at some of these things. A show like Faking It would be a pretty good opportunity to prove that. Of course, this is a dream, and it'll probably just stay a dream.

Now, why would this specific episode be special to me? Well, like I said, I'd like to believe I'm good at the things I do... and for the most part (all modesty aside) I know I am. One of the things I'm least confident about, though, is my cooking. Like the guy on the show, I have to confess that I'm a kitchen rat. I love being in the kitchen, and while I won't be totally lost, I'm not totally comfortable preparing a meal alone. I collect recipes from friends and from cookbooks. I'm not usually a liabilty in the kitchen when friends are cooking. I have a few staple recipes that I can whip up in most kitchens. Despite all this, however, I don't trust myself... I don't trust my hands, my knowledge of food, my nose, or my taste buds.

I love cooking, but love doesn't necessarily translate to skill. I guess this episode just gives me a bit of hope. I may never get to go to culinary school, but I just need to spend a bit more time in the kitchen. Hey, if that kitchen rat could pass himself off as a chef, then I can at least learn to cook a decent meal.