Thursday, January 19, 2012

I am Sher-locked!

I don't even know how to start this. Emotion is taking its toll on me I can't think straight. But oh well, I decided to wing it. Must get this out of my chest.

You probably know I watch the British mini-series Sherlock. But have I also mentioned how big a fan I am? I would die to see Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock) and Martin Freeman (John Watson) in person! These two guys' superb acting + the intelligent stories of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle + the witty-funny dialogues + the awesome cinematography equate to the best TV show our generation has ever seen. (I know I may be overacting but that's my feelings talking! Haha.) Another factor that could have possibly affected all my excitement is the fact that every series of Sherlock only has three episodes, with each episode having approx 90 minutes, and then goes hiatus. That means I get to have three weeks of happiness, followed by a year of waiting! Imagine the anticipation us fans have to endure! But it won't be put to waste--Sherlock doesn't disappoint.

After watching The Reichenbach Fall, third and last episode of Series 2, I can't stop talking about it. I just got too many feelings inside and I can't even let them all out because I only know very few people who share the same enthusiasm I have. But Tumblr, being the coolest site ever, is where I find refuge. Lots and lots of Sherlock fans all over the globe I am so happy! I share with them all the sentiment!

Now excuse me as I will rewatch.

PS. Here are some screencaps.

Friday, January 6, 2012

The 2011 Year-End Report

Last, last year, I made a similar report out of too much excitement on the new year ahead. Originally, I attempted making a list of the top stories which made it to the news in the year 2010. But since I haven't really watched news then (is staying in the dorm enough of an excuse?), I got nothing to write about. Hence, this list. Turns out it was something good. A summary of my year's highlights. And knowing myself all too well, I just love 1) lists and 2) looking back at the fond, and even the not-so-fond, memories of the past. Here goes my year-end report for 2011.

1. This year can probably be dubbed as the start of my social networking activity. And when I say activity, I mean "super active." I have been in Facebook since 2008 or 2009, I think, but this year, this website just became one of the default sites I visit whenever I get hold of the internet. Then there's Tumblr, which I joined in 2010 but really became a part of my life this 2011. In fact, I was so often visiting here--liking, reblogging, and posting stuffs--that I gained followers I never thought I would've gained! Plus over the hundreds of notes I received from posting photos, etc. I was so absorbed in Tumblr that during summer, I barely left the computer, doing nothing else but scrolling the day away. Also this year, just recently actually, I signed in at Twitter. Tbh, I fought so hard so not to join another social networking site because it's already eating up so much of my time. But the temptations are too strong, I finally gave in. It was at first boring. I did nothing but read updates from celebrities I follow: friends Georgina Wilson, Isabelle Daza, Solenn Heussaff, Liz Uy, and Anne Curtis, among others. Then I went to a phase where I used this site as my news source: I followed ANC, Inquirer, and Maria Ressa. And finally, I entered the phase where I actually followed and been followed of friends and people I know. There are other sites I visit too, such as Google+, Gmail and Ymail (of course), Youtube, 9gag,, and some fancy blogs I follow--all bookmarked in my laptop. Had I been super OC again, I would've accounted all the hours spent surfing the net, whether it's on social networking, reading, or artsy-fartsy sites. (Hmm, nice idea there!) Approx one-sixth of every day, perhaps? GOOD GOD.

Got this from Tumblr!
2. I may have spent too much time in the worldwide Web, but I just made a breakthrough in the aspect of books, as well. This year, I read a total of six books!!! Yes, I am not big on books, then all of a sudden, this?! To think that's four of them are even included in the BBC list of books to read! What is this sorcery??! I read The Count of Montecristo and The Three Musketeers, both classics from Alexandre Dumas; Smaller and Smaller Circles, a great detective story from Filipino author F.H. Batacan; The Hobbit, prequel of the infamous Lord of the Rings Trilogy adventure, all written by J.R.R. Tolkien; The Undomesticated Goddess by Sophie Kinsella, first tween-y (but surprisingly about adults) and girly book I've read; and Bridget Jones's Diary which is soooo funny and kilig by Helen Fielding. I counted all the books I've read in my entire lifetime (school text books excluded) and I counted just a total of fifteen! (I told you I was serious about not being fond of reading!) And this year's total comprised nearly one-third of the grand total. How great this year is for being intellectual. Haha.

3. Next on the list are the series which provided me much of the entertainment I need to balance out my stressful academic life. There are the ones I already watched in the previous years: How I Met Your Mother, The Big Bang Theory, and Modern Family. Then there are the ones which have just been introduced to me and others which I watched just recently: Nikita, Downton Abbey, Hot in Cleveland, Awkward, and Once Upon A Time. There were mini-series too like Sherlock (its second series coming up this month! *can't breathe*), and Any Human Heart. I tried watching New Girl but I guess it didn't click to me that much. I have also seen the first two episodes of Suburgatory and 2 Broke Girls but wasn't able to download the succeeding episodes anymore. And oh, I almost forgot the All-Star Cycle of America's Next Top Model where I was rooting for Laura or Allison. Too bad they didn't win, but at least they made it to Greece! 2011 had also been the year where I developed a love for period dramas (Downton Abbey is one proof, and maybe Any Human Heart?) particularly to the Austen Classics. I finished Pride and Prejudice (Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle), Emma (Romola Garai), and Sense and Sensibility (whose Edward Ferrars is Dan Stevens), all BBC mini-series, in no time! I also loved Lost in Austen, spin-off of Pride and Prejudice, which I heard is going to have a film version. *excited, hope it won't disappoint*

Maybe I watched a little too much? :p

4. Aside from knowing a whole lot of new faces (to me) in the entertainment industry because of all the new shows I've been seeing, I also got to know more people in the UP College of Engineering as well this year after I became part of a new family, the UP Career Assistance Program for Engineering Students or UP CAPES, under the Publicity and Publications Committee. My friend Jona urged me to join so that we'd still get to spend time together now that we won't be classmates in most major subjects anymore. So I did apply, and imagine my surprise when I got accepted! Joining UP CAPES was timely, too. After UP Catandungan failed to be recognized as a university organization due to its lack of members, UP CAPES became my new avenue for challenges and work experiences, alongside my other org, UP KEM. The twist with this new org is that it taught (and is teaching) me a whole new lesson foreign to me: design. It has somewhat made me realize that I also have a thing for the arts and design. Also, I have learned how crucial practice and inspirations are in gaining the skill. I know I still have lots of work to do to come up with greater ideas and better output, but I can say I have done quite of an achievement this year.

Visit UP CAPES here.

5. Another new experience: I lived in a boarding house for the entire first semester. All these time since high school, I have stayed in dormitories, so the feeling of living in a boarding house or apartment outside school never failed to make me curious. I bet freedom's great--no curfews or general assemblies to mind, I used to say. Then, this happened. I did not get accepted in any dorm for AY 2011-2012. Luckily, my sister Elvy is staying in a boarding house in KNL while she's still hunting for jobs back then. I was very glad, at last I will finally have to live with my Ate. The first month of freedom was truly great! But it only lasted until my sister decided to transfer to an apartment in Shaw, nearer her workplace. I was left in the room. I had housemates, but we were never close. Just imagine, the solitude almost drove me mad. Although there is internet connection to keep me busy, it was the fact that I cannot talk to anybody whenever I got home which made me succumb to depressions. I really started to feel sad all the time, I don't know why. Plus I became so clingy! Yuck. Thankfully, I got accepted in Ilang-ilang Dorm when I reapplied for the second sem. Now, I'm happier. (Bonus: Ilang-ilang Dorm already has good wi-fi connections now relative to that of last year's! Even comparable to our internet speed in the boarding house!)

6. My sporty nature--I know I have (somewhat of) it in me but I never thought 2011 will troll on me like that. I played Ultimate Frisbee for Batch 08 during the ChE department inter-batch sports competition, and I was the only girl. It was my first time to hold a disc used in frisbee and I did not even know the rules. I joined anyway because, well, if you're already on the venue for the game and the opposing team has the chance of winning by default just because your team doesn't have any other girl player present, I don't think you can say No to playing, right? You ask me why I was there? Because of friendship. Lol. Riuji, our batch coordinator who persistently called me and asked me to join, telling me "basta 'wag lang ma-default,"  is to be blamed for all of this! Haha. But you know what, that experience was really fun, I even consider it a milestone. In case you're wondering, I served as cheerer on field, but was able to become a real player when I caught the disc and gave us one point by the end of the game. We did won. Against the freshies. Hihi. Another sporty moment was when I accepted to be a substitute player, this time in swimming. (I join the difficult games because I'm great like that. ) Same person who got me into this: the almighty Riuji Sato. My friend, still. >:D Well, I thought it was a non-serious game of swimming, where participants' favorite stroke is the survivor stroke or 'yung basta makatawid lang sa pool. I even considered wearing white shirt and shorts since there was no prescribed swimwear. Imagine my surprise when I saw that the girls wore one-piece, complete with goggles and headcap! One of them even competes for national triathlon events. Golly! I was the only person who only knows survival stroke. I swear I can see all their faces while I was swimming in the pool, too concerned I might drown halfway. But hell yeah, our ChE team (this time, the sportsfest was inter-department instead of inter-batch) composed of Kuya Chix, Karmina, Van, and I, still got the third place. Not that we're fast, but because only three departments were able to send participants. Haha, what luck! Finally, to complete my sporty streak for 2011 is my first ever 5K marathon! My first marathon, in fact. It was held in Naga, and I ran with Kuya Win and Ate Yeth. Great bonding moment!

Finish line!
7. Just like any other year, 2011 has its share of both happiness and tears. But in 2011, I experienced something I never thought would happen in my college life--a death of a dear friend. Bryan Diano. Friend, classmate, batchmate, and orgmate. His life was claimed by a jeepney accident on the dawn of Sept. 11. It was so sudden it took me a long time before the truth sank in. Someone so awesome can't die too soon, I kept convincing myself it was a different Bryan Diano I heard on the news. But when I saw my other batchmates and orgmates crying, I just knew it wasn't a joke he loved pulling on us. It was real. He was gone. For some days, I had moments when I just laid on my bed, staring at nothingness, and tears just flowed out from my eyes without me knowing it. 

Sad, sad news :(
Although there was too much grief, time heals. Now, all bitterness is lost, only the good memories remain. We love and miss you, Bry. Until we meet again.

8. Since I became a resident member of UP KEM in 2010, I was given responsibilities and tasks to hone my skills. This year, it's been an honor to be part of KEM's major events both for first and second semester. National Chemical Engineering Congress or NCEC (Inter-U part) and Awitan. Held last August, NCEC (composed of two parts namely National Chemical Engineering Symposium or NaChES and the Inter-University Competition or Inter-U) was a big success (and I mean, BIG!) I worked for the Technicals Committee of Inter-U, under Ate Kat, and we were in charge of making the rules and the questions, consulting it with our judges, making the necessary revisions, as well as scoring and entertaining questions raised during the contest proper. To be honest, it was a committee I never dreamed of joining. The Inter-U technicals for me must be composed of the brightest people. And there I was, outlier of the group (not being emo here). It was hard for me to adjust especially it was my first time working with all the other members (Ate Kat, Kuya Karl, Ate Maricar, Jake and Jay) who were really topnotch in their respective batches. I was only a substitute for Riuji (not again!) who won't be able to perform his tasks then because he was busy with ESC work. Turned out, that committee was my most loved group of people I have ever worked with in KEM. 

Inter-U Tech team but without Jay
Just this December, Awitan was my next big project. Dyan invited me to be part of her Logistics Committee which I gladly accepted. I had my share of experiences for this event too. I got lost in Camp Aguinaldo trying to find their Aguinaldo Theater. I frequented Divi and learned how to use a map to find the things I was looking for i.e. gummy bears. I asked for every trophy maker's calling card in Recto. I became active in fundraising projects (FRPs) but only the simple ones like taho sale, jelly milk sale, Sonny's Donuts sale, and every other sale of goods imaginable. I can say I am a different person now after having done all that. And I am proud to be part of Eng'g Week 2011's best night event!

Aside from these two major responsibilities, there were still other jobs I have done for KEM especially as part of the Socio committee such as becoming LMK mommy (our contestant won the title), joining the Project Balay Aklatan of UP Prime, among others.

9. On February 8, 2011, Bennard and I celebrated our third anniversary. It still comes as a surprise for others that we were able to endure three years together, when all the panliligaw moments feel just like yesterday to me. And the better part is, as years go by, we get to know each other well and we become more than just the couple. We became best friends.

Cheers to three years and counting!

This year had been greater than ever since I got to spend time with Bennard's family as well! Last summer, I joined their Holy Wednesday (Lent) procession, a family tradition. It was the second time I went to their place. Also this year, Bennard and I joined Tita Becky, his aunt, once in jogging around Bonifacio High Street and had dinner afterwards. I was really nervous of seeing Tita Becky, let alone converse with her, because I thought she's a snob. She wasn't. She was very approachable and I haven't had difficulty in talking to  her. It was a lovely evening, after all. Lastly, my another encounter with Bennard's family was on Dec 27. Tita Dandan, his mom, and Tita Becky went to Naga to rummage "Zara." Bennard, Leo, and Shenina tagged along. Since I was still in Naga, Bennard asked me to join them. Most afternoon, while the two titas spent hours and hours looking for the best bargains, the kids went to SM. We tried the Speed Coaster 4D in exchange of a movie. We ate and looked through shops and boutiques then ate again. By dinner time, Tito Jojo, Bennard's dad, joined us in the SM Foodcourt. They dropped me off at home after that.

Although he did not get to spend much time with my family, he got to see Mama and Papa in Manila before we went home for the break. He also saw Ate Glad and family, first time, when he dropped me off at home after a pre-Christmas date. Also, he accompanied Joy in her first Lantern parade and Midnight Mercato. He always get to see Ate Elvy often.

10. Last but not the least in this list (tongue twister!) is our December celebration this year. The first part of the happenings which started when Papa, Mama and Joy went to Manila was already mentioned in my previous post. The second part which I will just tell you about is Raph's christening and our noche buena together. John Raphael or Raph, my second nephew, was christened on December 21 and I was a proxy ninang for my sister Ate Elvy. It's my first time to be one, and my second time to ever attend a baptism (first one's Gwen's). So yeah, you can expect my excitement. Plus Raph is sooooo cute in his barong tagalog!!! At reception, I did more videoke singing than eating. Haha. But of course, only at the hearing range of very few people, namely Joy, Ate Let, Ate Yeth, Ate Glad, Ate Ling, Gwen, Maine, Zye and Lianne. During Christmas eve, our family was almost complete in our noche buena salo-salo. The Pillogo siblings, my cousins from Mama's side, were there too after we've invited them when we bumped into each other at midnight mass. Just almost because Ate Glad, Kuya Nel, Lianne and Justin left for Legazpi on Dec 24 to attend Kuya Nel's family reunion. On Christmas Day, the kids opened their gifts. So many gifts for them which I can't recall I have ever experienced in my entire childhood. I felt slightly cheated. Hahaha, joke. I totally understand that time's different now, 'nubers. We're richer now, perhaps? Lol. But seriously, this I think is my most commercialized Christmas, whether you see that in a good or bad light. As long as we are together and everybody's happy, it’s still Christmas to me.