31 October 2011

Running/Praying for Souls

May the souls of the dead see the light...
Walking on the way home from my afternoon jog, I saw a family place a lighted candle in front of their gate. I am not sure, but I presume it has to do with the upcoming All Souls Day. When I got home, I did the same. I got a candle, went outside, and lighted it up.

There's a long religious debate on whether or not we should pray for/to the dead or not. There is also a long religious debate on whether or not purgatory exists, but I don't want to go into that. All religions can spend all the time that they want debating about dogma.

But for me, it makes sense praying for the dead. I don't know why, I am not sure either. I remember  attending a requiem mass sometime ago. The religious leader said:  "the dead cannot pray for their own souls, they need us, the living -- to pray for them."

I believed him. "They need us. They need us to pray for them." Tumatak yon sa utak ko.  Kailangan din nila ng moral support. The soul journeys from this world to the next. May transition na nagaganap. Endeavor. I think prayers serve as their moral/spiritual booster para makatawid sila sa next life (sa finish line?).

Parang pagtakbo din yan, kailangan mo ng someone na maniniwala sayo na KAYA MO. Kahit isang tao lang, sapat na. It just takes one person to wish and pray for your good luck and it already means a lot.

I dedicate this afternoon's run to the faithful departed, -- to the souls of those "nauna na."

Eternal rest, grant to them, God. Let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen.

27 October 2011

Training for Chevrolet-New Balance Power Run 2011

Although I tried to wake up early today, I just couldn't. It's probably because my body wanted to recover all the puyat it had studying for the exams the previous days. So I just decided to run in the afternoon, which is quite unusual for me.
Afternoon runs at UP. Where's everyone?

Since I don't have anyone to run with, I just ran with my shadow. "Everyone carries a shadow, and the less it is embodied in the individual's conscious life, the blacker and denser it is." It may be one's link to more primitive animal instincts, which are superseded during early childhood by the conscious mind." "In spite of its function as a reservoir for human darkness... the shadow is the seat of creativity. So that for some, it may be, 'the dark side of his being, his sinister shadow (which) represents the true spirit of life..." - Carl Jung

I am not alone after all. Jogging with "THE SHADOW."

Sun sets at UP.
After my jog, I went home straight to take a shower. The next thing that was on my mind was to go to Shang  New Balance store. On my way there,  I stumbled upon a drink stand that I have missed so much - Quickly!

Wala paring kupas.
Of course, I bought my ever so favorite Taro Ice, which they now call Super Taro Ice.
Tastes oh so yummy. Honest to goodness. No frills.

Then, I went to the NB store to register for the New Balance Power Run 2011 right away...
NB Store in Shangri-Ladida

After registering, I get the bag that contains all that I need for race day. 
The bag the contains everything I need for the race.

Running shirt

1000 Php shoe discount. Too bad the discount is only until 6 November. But no worries, a small stub right there in the corner gives 20 per cent off until the year ends. Great deal parin.

My race bib with timing chip. Also a raffle stub, for a chance to win a Chevrolet car!

Rules rules rules.

NB shoes galore.  Good thing I didn't bring any extra cash. Buying running shoes is just too tempting.
The feeling's so strong.
I am a long time fan of New Balance. I like their running philosophy and the quality of their products. What's more, I think with NBs, you get your money's worth. I will buy another pair once I retire my old ones.

But what really made me decide to join this race is the chance to win a car! That's very unique in a race, getting a chance to win a car. *Fingers cross.

Of course, you just don't put your shoes on and decide to run a race. You must train and prepare for it. Training makes the challenge easier. I like how Manny Pacquiao put it, "The harder you train, the easier the fight."

24 October 2011

First Time in a Regional Trial Court

The Manila City Hall where you will find the courts. Trials usually start at 8:30 a.m.

MONDAY,  I woke up early to meet my classmates at Manila City Hall. As one of the requirements in our subject Practice Court, we were required to render several hours of court visits. The requirement made a lot of sense to me as I haven't been to a court before. I don't know what a real court looks like nor how a case is really heard. I consider my self very fortunate to have been to a court, not everyone has been to a court. That's true even to some lawyers.

Inside the Manila City Hall, we had a hard time looking for the Regional Trial Court we were supposed to visit. "It should be somewhere here - third floor, but where is everyone?" We opened an old inconspicuous door and there it was! It was a room as jam-packed as an MRT on a rush hour.

Persecutor cross-examining the witness.

I was excited. I had been waiting for this moment for years. It was my first time to see how a Philippine court looked like. Judge, prosecutors, defense attorneys, family members, inmates, stenographers, evidences -- everything that I have been reading in books and cases were there right before my eyes. We observed the persecutor cross-examine the witness. There was tension in the air as the lawyer was trying to squeeze the truth out of a witness who herself wasn't sure of her answers.

I was seated beside an inmate ready to be sentenced for a crime. "Kuya" didn't mind me. He had his own business. I find a sense of security knowing that all inmates are handcuffed. I also noticed that the "witness stand" was an old dilapidated chair, which had probably been there since circa 60's (?) The Philippine flag at the background was old, you can tell that it hasn't been washed in years. Along sides were cabinets that seemed like lockers. There were also old unused papers lying on every corner. Without people, that room could easily be mistaken for a bodega.

Inmate waiting for his case to be called

Outside, just a few steps away, there was a room renovation going. I think they are furnishing a new court to replace the existing one. Thank goodness. Once complete, there should be a better venue to administer justice. With that said, they no longer have to used that "bodega," and oh, that hideous looking witness chair.

23 October 2011

Bimby and Klowee as Friends

It's nice to know that after barking, biting, chasing, and humping each other the whole day - Bimby and Klowee are STILL friends.

20 October 2011

Feature: A Surprising Study on What Motivates Us

Study shows that there are three (3) factors that lead to better performance:

1) Autonomy - it is our desire to be self directed.
2) Mastery - our urge to get better at stuff.
3) Purpose - ... making the world a little bit better.

Enjoy and share.

09 October 2011

Film Review: Hable con Ella (Talk to Her)

Hola! ¿cómo estás? Me llamo Rah, tengo 28 anos, vivo en Quezon City. Me gusta ir a cine y me gusta sacar fotos. (Hi, how are you? I'm Rah, 28, lives and QC. I like watching movies and taking pictures.)

So much for my Spanish.

To be honest, I was never really good at it anyway. I almost failed it back in college.

I have forgotten most of what I have learned in Spanish back then, but I can still vividly remember the movie "Hable con Ella" -- the Spanish movie our professor made us to watch to conclude the last day of classes. It was the first foreign language film that I've seen. It was what gave birth to my fascination with foreign language films.

Hable con Ella is a story of Benigno (a male nurse) and Alicia (a comatose patient). Benigno (translated as benign or harmless in English)  has always been attracted to Alicia's grace and beauty. Even before the accident that caused her coma, Benigno would wait for her everyday in her dance classes (overlooking his window) and simply admired her in every way.

One day, Alicia met an accident that led to her state of vegetative coma. She was confined to the hospital where Benigno was a nurse.  Benigno would always talk to the comatosed Alicia, give her massages, baths, did her nails and hair. He gave her all the love and care in the world. Throughout the four years that Benigno had been taking care of the comatosed Alicia, his obsession with her grew more intensely. There's no doubt in his mind that Alica loved him too. Benigno wanted to marry her and had even prepared the house where they would stay.

Along the story, Benigno meets Marco, a guy similarly situated with him. Marco was also taking care of his girlfriend Lydia who was also in a coma. He would seek Benigno's help and advice. Their profound conversations would develop in deep friendship and trust, which was further complexed by Benigno's seemingly, strange, subtle, naive attraction to Marco.

One day, the hospital doctors found out that the (comatose patient) Alicia was pregnant. Benigno, as a prime suspect for rape, was charged with and was jailed pending his case. But Benigno couldn't stand being away from Alicia. He will do all that it takes to be with Alicia again. His subsequent decisions - will define the outcome of the story.

Looking closer at Benigno's character, it is noticeable that he is naive and unsure of himself. Viewers will find it easy to relate with his character - he's just like most of us - naive, unsure. The film's telling flashbacks, symbolisms, and back stories (not to mention the nude scenes) will make you want to stay in your chair as long as the movie takes. The scenes are artistic and very well thought of. 

The film is also very unique as it engages us to ponder on the notion and concept of love. "Is it right to believe that love can persist beyond the realm of consciousness?" This is one of the main questions that the film is trying to convey.

Starring: Javier Camara, Dario Grandinetti, Leonor Watling, Rosario Flores, Mariola Fuentes, Geraldine Chaplin, and written, produced, and directed by Pedro Almodovar. The film won the 2002 Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay and the 2003 Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign-Language Film, among others.

Here's the official trailer. I hope you get the chance to watch it somehow. 


Perhaps one of the best foreign language movies I've ever watched. I wouldn't mind watching it again. It's a movie that's hard to forget. 

01 October 2011

Happy Birthday Tatay

September 27.

Happy Birthday Tatay!

My Tatay and I two decades ago. Time flies so fast.
 When I showed you this picture, you smiled and laughed.
I know you saw the future in my eyes.

Birthday Bash at Tatay's office.  

We hope you enjoyed the special surprise we prepared for you. :)