Thursday, June 30, 2005

I can't take it anymore

It's June 30, I know. June is not yet over. BUT, I just can't take this anymore. So, let me rant, please.


My cousin came rushing into my office yesterday.

Cousin: Huwag na tayo magbayad ng taxes sa BIR.
Me: (Huh? Wha? Why? How?) Bakit?!? Excempted na tayo?
Cousin: Hindi, pag hinuli tayo ng BIR, sabihin na lang natin, I am sorry.

And then during lunchtime,

Secretary: Peter, may utang ka pa saken ha sa ulam (Our secretary's husband owns the canteen inside our office compound)
Peter: Ha? Wala akong pambayad eh, sorry na lang, pwede na!

Yes, this whole I AM SORRY thing is one big joke. And even if I'm looking at this from an unbiased point of view, I really couldn't see nor feel any sincerity in her words and eyes. Just three days before she came out with this apology, she was seen on tv, goading her opponents about choosing the wrong date to mount a rally against her. And then three days later, she's sorry? For a mere lapse in judgement? WTF?! She was merely protecting her votes? So I will still lead by one million? Overall? -- That's protecting her votes? And this after she claimed on nationwide television that the votes had already been counted. If so, why was there a need to protect?

Seconds after she came out with this apology, the tv screen showed Mike Defensor and Franklin Drilon, praising and lauding GMA for the courage she showed as a leader. What courage? I was glued on tv, and I saw only hypocrisy and lies, covered by a poker faced, self-appointed leader, trying her best to look somber and apologetic. And Drilon said the public should forget all about it. HUWAT?! I highly doubt he'll still say that had he been in the late FPJ's shoes.

And then the next morning, I see this article -- after GMA apologized on tv, her staff sang "If We Hold On Together." Some of them cried. Some of them were teary eyed. But they sang to show their support for GMA. Again, WTF?!?! Everything is so scripted! Did they, for a moment, think that they were in front of the cameras? Because I certainly feel that this whole Gloria-gate brouhaha can only happen on the big screen. See, I was right. GMA is really a second rate, trying hard actress, whose intention really is to make it big in the showbiz industry. Her CDs are selling like hotcakes. She's the hottest topic since the Kris-Joey scandal last year. Her posters are everywhere. Wow, she's a success now. A success in the showbiz industry.

Now, FG Arroyo makes the ultimate sacrifice by... er... going to the US. How? How can this be considered a sacrifice? And I really ask this question sincerely -- by going abroad, isn't he in effect, escaping from the public eye? And he will be back when the public has forgotten all about it, or when a newer and bigger scandal erupts, whichever comes first. So where's the sacrifice in that?


What a way to end the month. I wish I can say that I had really been positive this whole month. But I just needed to rant about them online.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Blogging bits II

Wow. I can't believe that as early as now, I am booked for the whole week. I have a company dinner to go to, which we organized as our way of saying thanks to our sales team. I'm actually looking forward to it, because of course, the atmosphere will be much more different than if we were having dinner at the office. We'll be dining in the posh Paseo Uno! And the best part is, the company is paying for it!! Yay!!

And our biz is taking its second major step -- we will be ordering plastic bags for the cookies. This might sound trivial to some of you, 'coz even I don't really notice the packaging unless they're really nice. But it took us two weeks to decide on this, so ordering tomorrow is one major step for us. :) Since we started researching for our biz, we have noticed packaging for Mary Grace, Mrs. Field's, Delifrance, Goodies and Sweets, Bizu etc. etc. Naks... as if we're competing head on with the big names na no? :)

And then there are the oculars for florists which I want to go to. There are two hotels I will be visiting this week, to check out the works of two different florists.


I have been tinkering with Adobe Photoshop for the past few months now. Nothing major really. Just cropping pictures here, then adding contrast there. And I just realized last night how much I was enjoying myself with Adobe. I was trying to edit a label for our office, and I couldn't figure out how to do it well. I took a break, brushed my teeth, and while in the middle of brushing, finally came up with a solution. There I was, at ten past 2 a.m., brushing my teeth excitedly because I couldn't wait to go back to work! That was when I realized how much I liked Photoshop. I can't cross it off my list yet, as I haven't really sat down with a good Photoshop how-to book. Everything has been trial and error for me so far. Will probably buy one when I can really sit down and spend months studying it.


Just saw The Apprentice's second to the last episode. Liza and I are both huge fans of this show. And tonight, I feel so bitin!! I know who's going to win anyway, but I just want to know what their "employees" said about them. Again, human relations really plays a big part in a company's success. I don't think I have ever come across a successful company where most of the employees are unhappy with their jobs.


Mike's in China and will be staying there for a frickin two months. :( We just celebrated our 2nd year anniversary last Saturday (yay!). Ye gads. I can't believe it's been two years already, and we've known each other for almost three years now. It really doesn't feel that long. I can still remember what I was wearing the first time we met. (I still have them in my closet and they still fit! Woohoo!) Mike is amazed with how well I remember things. The exact dates, the exact clothes, what he said, the movies we saw. But my memory is good only when it's about him. He doesn't believe this, and I can't believe it either. Ask anyone from the office to desribe me, and one of the first things they'll say is that I'm makakalimutin. Harhar... Mike will find that hard to believe I'm sure.

Thursday, June 23, 2005


*MUA-- make up artist

I just booked our make up artist for our wedding... yay!!!

Okay, okay. The original plan was to have two trial make ups -- one from Madge Lejano (the artist I booked) and the other one by Eddie Bruan. Eddie Bruan is also highly recomended in the w@w forums. They were the only two artists I considered.

Madge's package includes make up for the following: bride, groom and two other people. The make up for groom is a requirement. And imagine Mike's aghast reaction when he learnt that I booked Madge already. But I saw some pics from Madge's files, and there was one groom, who, after being made up by Madge, ended up looking like Ariel Rivera. Hey! Maybe Madge can make Mike look like Luis Manzano. Or even Ben Affleck! Even for just a day! :)

It's standard procedure (I think) for Madge's trial make up subjects to get their studio shots in Pictures and Profiles, so I had my before and after shots taken. My before shots looked like I was some sort of harassed woman running out of blood -- I looked so pale, with dark under eye circles. But my after shots... whoa.... those were the shots where I really, really fell in love with me. :) Narcissistic, but true. And look ma, I have eyelashes! Hahahaha!

So I paid Madge for the trial make up and left without signing a contract with her. While Val and I were on our way to the escalator, I said out loud, "Ano pa ba hinihintay ko?" I liked the make up, I liked Madge. Ever since I saw her booth in the February bridal fair, I knew she was "the one." So what was I waiting for? And Val made a very good point -- if I don't book her now, even though chances are I'd book her din naman, I'd have to schedule another meeting with her, sayang oras. That did it. I went back and booked her. Yay!!

So that's another supplier crossed off our list. Next one -- event stylist.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Prank caller

0910-4091939 -- Whoever is the owner of this cellphone number has been sending me really lewd messages through my cellphone. He'd call me to make my phone ring, then hang up, then send the lewd, icky text message. It started around two weeks ago. I thought he would go away if I ignore him. But I guess he just really wanted attention, because the lewd messages now became threatening. He knows where I work, he knows I'm about to get married, and he also knows my name.

Hmmm... how in the world do I view this thing positively?

I'm glad someone really takes time to ruin my day?

I'm glad someone finds me important enough to text me every other day?

I'm glad someone is making an effort to know more about me?

I hate to admit it, but this prank texter/caller is REALLY scaring me. Scaring me to the point that I check out all the strange people surrounding me, just to see if they are my mysterious, icky prank texter. To the point that I do not want to go to the office anymore for fear that he might be lurking around in our compound.

The thing that bothers me the most is that this person probably looks normal from the outside. Hindi naman siguro sa mental institution napunta ang cellphone number ko no. This person probably wakes up in the morning and goes to work, talks to people, has his own circle of friends and functions as any normal person does, which is why people I know talk to him and tell him things about me. Nobody knows about this sick side of him, the second personality that's so grossly demented and rotten and sick. I can't think of anything more negative to say about him, as this month's positivism must have really worked wonders on me.

And how am I responding to his threats and lewdness? By keeping silent. With the way things are going though, I am so tempted to text back and tell him what's on my mind. But that is probably what he expects me to do. So I will not text him back. But aaaaaargh! I just wish there is something I can do... something that will bother him even more than he has bothered me.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Blogging bits

Half the month is almost over. How am I doing with my June goals so far?

1. I will stop being negative and just try to see the positive side of things. For this month anyway.
--See? No negative posts this month.

2. Because of #1, I will stop taking the news seriously.
-- I read the headlines, scan the articles, read Conrado de Quiros' column, then go directly to the lifestyle section. So I am barely aware of whatever new drama the government has concocted.

3. I will work out 20x this month. (Already worked out twice, woohoo! Eighteen more to go!)
-- Worked out 3x this month. Which means, I need to work out 2x/day for 3 days to reach my goal. Harharharhar. Besides, I have a good reason why I didn't work out. Sira ang treadmill eh. :)

4. I will practice my cooking and baking more.
-- Yup!! I did this!! I think I baked and cooked more this month than the past five months combined.

5. I will have my haircut, which I have delayed for three weeks now.
-- Yup! New haircut, but nobody seems to notice.

6. I will try to sleep earlier than 2 a.m.
-- Hmmm.... 1am is still earlier than 2am. Seriously, I think I should have written it as "be in bed by 12am."

7. I will finally follow my doctor's advice and take iron supplements everyday.
-- Err, no. Tsk.

8. We will TRY to book the major wedding suppliers -- photographer/ videographer, couturier and florist.
-- Booked photographer/videographer already.

9. I will eat more fruits.
-- Ate (err.. drank) a pear and an apple this month. That should count for something, right? Oh, oh.. ate frozen jackfruit too. That's how we do it here. We freeze the langka, and it's a great summer treat!

10. I will try to not procrastinate.
-- Yay! So proud of myself for this!! Thanks SE P910!


Am I on my way to domestication or what? For several days now, I have been singing (silently thank God) Michael V's J-O-Y jingle. And I can't, for the life of me, get it out of my head! I'm sure na if hindi lang ako takot sa sarili kong kabaduyan, I would probably dance the J-O-Y song in the confines of my own bedroom. Hehehehe... takot ka na Mike?


I just realized that this coming father's day will be the last one I will spend here at home. :( Nearly cried when I realized it. I will be spending mother's day with my family next year, but not father's day. And to think I'm a daddy's girl.


It's funny how talks of weddings can bring women together. I went to the bank yesterday, and what started out as an innocent hey-who-did-your-gown question quickly turned into a wedding gabfest. By the time I left, I had a group of women circled around me, all excitedly giving me tips on what to do and where to go to get the best deals for the wedding.

Which left me wondering -- if these women, who were almost strangers to me, felt this excited about my wedding, then what more my own mother?

My mom and I have never been close. (Buti na lang my mom is so not internet savvy.) And this fact has never been more obvious now, in the midst of the wedding and engagement preparations. I know she's excited about the upcoming wedding. She has her own ideas, I have my own, and more often than not, we clash. She suggests, I reject. Sometimes, I think I unintentionally disagree with her just so I can disagree with her, and vice versa. And I really don't know how to involve her in the preparations, when i don't agree with most of her ideas. How do I tell her, "Ma, di ko gusto yan" without hurting her feelings? Maybe this would be a good time to practice seeing only the positive side of things?

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

A Tale of Two Wedding Photographers

Wedding photographer one, to be known as WPO, came highly recommended by my bestfriend. I browsed through her wedding album, and both Mike and I were impressed with how vivid the colors in the album were. So we visited his shop one fine Tuesday in May, and we came out satisfied naman. Went through some of the albums in his shop and some were good, some so-so. But generally, most were really beautiful. WPO gave is a good package, but we wanted (more like I wanted) to look around some more before finally confirming with one photographer.

So we checked out websites of other wedding photographers who were highly recommended in W@W forums. I would stay up late most nights, looking at the packages of other photographers, but none came close to beating WPO's package. We visited bridal fairs, but really, almost all the packages we saw were higher than WPO's package. We couldn't believe it -- WPO had a good reputation and a good package to boot!!! We were almost sure that we were going to book him.

Until we talked with wedding photographer two, hereby known as WPT.

WPT's works were comparable with that of WPO's, although his rates were higher. He was able to establish a connection with us minutes after we met him. He was kalog, easy to talk to, and open about sharing information about other wedding suppliers which he felt would be of use to us.

"I want him!" I told Mike the minute we stepped out of WPT's shop. First time I told Mike that I want another man... hehehehe. "Let's book him now! What are we waiting for?"

But wait!! What about WPO? The highly recommended fotog with the lowest package ever?

We sat down and compared the two packages. If we remove some items that we could do without, WPT's package would come out cheaper than WPO's!!! Yay!!

But what items can we do without?

The mini albums -- it would be nice to give something to both sets of parents, so that stays.

The pre-nuptial pics -- eh nasa package na so sayang naman kung tatanggalin. Diba Mike? Diba diba?

Those were the only two items we considered removing, but ended up not removing na din.

So we deviced a plan. We will get WPO only if he promises to personally take our picture. If he assigns us to someone else, then we'll get WPT.

We went back to WPO's shop. I was actually praying that he assign us to someone else, so that we'll have a good reason to not get his services anymore. At this point, I was still sold on the idea of WPT as our wedding photographer. The moment we sat down, the lights went off. Brownout. Tsk tsk. Not a good sign. Anyways, we start off by asking him point blank to be our photogrpaher.

WPO: (shakes his head)
US: Pero ang feedback sa labas is dapat kayooooo.....
WPO: (shakes his head again) Ang pwede kong gawin, I can officiate sa wedding niyo... (BUT WE ALREADY HAVE A PRIEST TO DO THAT FOR US!) but I won't be your official photographer.

By this time, Mike and I were sneaking glances at each other. Okaaaay.. is it bye-bye time already?

WPO: We cover 700++ weddings a year.....
WPO: So sanay na sanay na diyan ang mga tao namin.
ME: Okay, if hindi kayo ang magpipicture, sino a-assign niyo sa amin?
WPO: Kung sino man ang photographer niyo, huwag na niyo problemahin iyon.

What?!? Mike's shelling out a good percentage of his life savings for pictures ha, so we better know who will be taking our picture no!

But WPO was not revealing anything. Mike and I exchanged looks that said okay-on-to-plan-B-aka-WPT.

And then suddenly,

WPO: O sige, pwede naman akong i reserve eh. Depende sa inyo kelan nyo ako gustong nandoon -- preparations, church or reception.
We remained silent. And poker faced.

WPO: Sige, pwede ako sa preparation and church. Tawad na yon for you.

At this point, okay na si Mike with him. But I was still unconvinced. I just felt disappointed that WPO had this ma-ere aura with him, while WPT was so friendly and open. I'm still hooked on WPT.

WPO goes on and on about the importance of the couple in creating the perfect wedding album. I was barely listening to him, all I could think of was how hot it was inside his shop since brownout nga. Then suddenly, WPO drops the bomb:

WPO: If you sign up now, I'll throw in another mini album, and give you a 10% discount pa.

Whoa!! Again again again..

WPO: Plus if you get my services for your engagement, I'll even throw in an extra album, no layouts though.

We were both so surprised that we couldn't do the math, so WPO wrote it down on paper for us. And there it was -- P8,000 lower than our original budget.

WPT who? :)

So now we have a wedding photographer!!!! Yay!! One item to cross off our wedding suppliers list!

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Positive thoughts...

I'd hate to ruin my track record of a rantless blog post for this June (except June 1).

So I will look only at the positive side of this whole Gloriaetta-telenovela.

I think GMA will make a wonderful actress. It must be difficult, denying all the allegations even with the evidence out in the open for everybody to see, hear and download. And still, she maintains her innocence by facing the public and denying everything. Without flinching under all that pressure. That's very hard to do. Only a seasoned actress can do that.

Ignacio Bunye will make a great comedian. In the middle of all this brouhaha, he manages to find the humor by pulling out his letter of REimbursement.

Mikey Arroyo is already an actor. With his quick wits and his way with words, he will make a great script writer too. Lion King to Liar King? Bilis niya naisip yung comeback na yon ah! Dba ang galing?

Come to think of it, majority of the people running the government all have promising careers in show business. We have a good actress (GMA), a good comedian (Bunye), a good script writer (Lion King), a good antagonist (opposition block), good supporting actors and actresses (Gonzales, Wycoco etc.) -- the story of the Philippines would make a great telenovela. Award winning talaga.

O ayan. Wonderful, great, galing, good -- I have used only positive adjectives for this post. Very positive pa rin ako about life. I'm not ranty anymore. Dba Rory? :)

Tuesday, June 07, 2005


Got caught in the after school traffic in ICA-Xavier area a while ago. I stared outside the car window and looked at the students passing us by. Couldn't help but feel nostalgic about high school. That was ten years ago. Was never really obsessed with topping the class and getting good grades. Back then, my major issues in life were:

1. To be in the same class with my bestfriends.
2. To be in the same class with my crush(es).
3. To have the cutest school supplies (cutest notebooks, cutest bags etc.)
4. To not miss a deadline for submission of anything.
5. To avoid being the topic of gossip for whatever reasons.

Life was really so simple back then. Topics of conversations with friends revolved around what course to take in college, the latest couples hooking up / breaking up, who the cutest guys, girls and couples in school were, which teacher we liked and disliked.... aaaah, those were really the days. Dresses for the prom, courses to take in college, dreams and ambitions in life -- those were the major choices we had to make.

During my highschool days though, I couldn't wait to go to college. And when I stepped into college, I couldn't wait to start working. I couldn't wait to start slaving my ass off for the corporate world, wear my corporate attires, and project my corporate self.

And now that I'm working for our family business, I couldn't help but wish I am back in school, worrying about crushes and prom dresses again. Sigh. I'm really, REALLY old.

I really miss those happy, carefree days. It's the lack of responsibility that I miss the most. Back then, if I made a terrible mistake, it would probably affect only myself. But working for our family business is a different matter altogether. There's my dad, who, I know, expects a lot from the business. There are the employees relying on the company for their monthly household expenses. I'm not only answerable to myself, I'm answerable to everybody in the company. That's what I feel most of the time.

I wish I made more mistakes back in highschool. Yup, that's right -- more mistakes. I was so scared to fail that I ended up not trying anything at all. I remember how much I wanted to join our school's newspapers, if only because I wanted to live Elizabeth Wakefield's lifestyle. (Sweet Valley High's avid readers would know what I'm talking about) But I didn't join because I didn't want people criticizing my articles. I wanted to join our choir too. As an organist, if there is such a word (meron ba?). I auditioned for the position, even though I couldn't read the notes. I knew the chords but couldn't read notes. So I played it by ear. And ended up making some mistakes. The choir's head teacher was surprised to learn that I couldn't read the notes. I thought she was ridiculing me. That ended my dreams of being a part of the choir.

Three years from now, when I look back to where I am right now, I don't want to still be typing my wishes and regrets for this year. I want to be able to look back and say, "Did I really do that?" or "Yay! I really did it!"

**Note: Lame as it may seem, the Bohol trip is one of those yay-I-did-it moments for me. :D I've always wanted to travel with friends. That was my first time, on a plane, with friends.**end of note

This year, I really, really, really want to:

Start my food biz with Liza
The eternal pessimist that I am, I have readied myself for the fact that yes, our biz might fail. But I just want to try it and see.

Travel out of the country with friends
Having my parents voluntarily sponsor me for this wish would mean so much to me. Now, all I have to do is teach my parents to bloghop, and voila! Accidentally come across my blog.

Bake like I've never baked before. Cook like no one's going to eat it.
Well, you get the point. At least, I hope you do.

Make a really big contribution to humanity.
Now this is difficult. First, I don't have any idea what it is exactly that I want to do. I don't think giving alms is a contribution to humanity. Years ago, Val and I had this wonderful idea of how to do it. We never got around to going ahead with it though. Second, I think "a really big contribution to humanity" would take more than six months to prepare. Unless, I have a big stash of cold cash hidden somewhere which I can just donate easily ASAP. But I don't.

Help PAWS reduce incidence of animal cruelty."
This is something I feel strongly about. Animals are helpless against humans. They don't have the equipment to fight back. They don't have agencies to report cruel treatments against them. We do.

Learn the art of small talk.
Very important. Solves a lot of things.

Monday, June 06, 2005


My brother told me this story about his friend. Friend asks their maid what's for lunch. Their conversation goes:

Friend: Manang, anong ulam?
Manang: Stupid shrimps
Friend: Stupid shrimps? Bakit? Anong ginawa ng shrimps sayo?
Manang: Hindi, stupid shrimps! Yung hipon na may laman sa loob.
Friend: Ah!! Stuffed shrimps!

Laughed my head off after hearing this one. :)

Sunday, June 05, 2005

June goals

1. I will stop being negative and just try to see the positive side of things. For this month anyway.
2. Because of #1, I will stop taking the news seriously.
3. I will work out 20x this month. (Already worked out twice, woohoo! Eighteen more to go!)
4. I will practice my cooking and baking more.
5. I will have my haircut, which I have delayed for three weeks now.
6. I will try to sleep earlier than 2 a.m.
7. I will finally follow my doctor's advice and take iron supplements everyday.
8. We will TRY to book the major wedding suppliers -- photographer/ videographer, couturier and florist.
9. I will eat more fruits.
10. I will try to not procrastinate.

Hmm... the way I see it, numbers 1,3,6 and 10 will be the hardest goals.

Wish me luck. :)

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Had an eventful day yesterday.

Car wouldn't start in the morning. Something about the batteries, whatever.

Now, I have to admit that when it comes to automobiles, I am a do-do. The things I know about a car are these --

1. Turn ignition to switch on and off
2. Check for gas. Fill up with gas when gas gauge shows gas tank low.
3. At night, switch headlights on.
4. Use the signals (right turn and left turn).
5. Lock the door.

That's it.

Once, I called my dad because a weird sign lit up on my dashboard. I told my dad to come over asap to where I was had pulled over, which was a good 30 minutes from home. My dad panicked, woke up my brother (gabi na nun eh) and was already in the car minutes after I called him. So while waiting for him, I pulled out the manual and began looking for the weird sign on the dashboard and what it meant. This is what I found out:

[image of icon lit up on dashboard] = fog lamps are turned on

I had accidentally turned on the fog lamp. Sheepish, I called my dad and told them to go back home. Since then, whenever I have weird encounters with the four wheeled kind, I would often turn to my automobile guru -- the manual, to find out what's the problem. If I can't find the answers in its pages, I call my family.

Back to my original story. My dad charged the car's batteries for a few minutes, after which, it started effortlessly. But by 6 p.m., the battery was really hopeless. Buti na lang I was with Momon. If not, I would've panicked. So there we were, parked behind Parco grocery, waiting for my dad to bring a new batt. It took my dad around an hour to get to where we were (he came straight from Divisoria pa).

Really grateful for my family. :)


I had been thinking of switching back to Globe for quite some time now. I don't know what's up with Smart's system lately, but there was a time when all text messages sent at night could not be sent, and incoming messages were received an hour after they were sent to me. But upon further investigation (naks), I found out that Globe doesn't offer free cellphones for their retention package. Smart does. Made the choice between the two networks easier for me.

I found it difficult to choose among all the cellphone in the market thought. There's Nokia 6260, 6630 and 6680. Then there's SE P910, which Momon has been convincing me to avail. He owns a P910 too, and is very vocal about his satisfaction with it. Then, there's my ultimate dream phone -- the XDA O2. *sigh* But again, upon further investigation, I discovered how O2 users had problems with the phone hanging and crashing several times. They regret buying the phone, but since it's an expensive phone, they stick with it. Tsk.

In the end, I chose the SE P910. :) :) I like its silver color, its PDA-cellphone feature, and the usual keypad in front, which O2 doesn't have. Plus the fact that Mon already has a lot of programs stored in his computer. All I have to do is choose and upload. No need to check out sites one by one. :)

Another big PLUS -- it's guaranteed that if ever my phone crashes, I would have an in-house cellphone technician to repair my phone for FREE. :)

Crossing "new cellphone" off my wish list now.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Child of jueteng

I had lunch with two government employees yesterday. They were talking about the latest cost cutting measure of the government, which is to streamline the number of government employees in all government offices.

This is what I know, based on what they told me:

1. The government will choose the names of people to be reassigned or to be transferred to another department / area.
2. Most likely, these will be the people who are under the retirable age.
3. The employees can be transferred to a department which they aren't familiar with (e.g. from DTI to DOH). Or they can be transferred to other areas (from Manila to Palawan).
4. Should they resign because they don't like their new positions / area assignments, they get nothing. Except for the GSIS benefits yata.

My heart really went out to the two government employees. They told me how all the people in their department would contribute money to buy soap, dishwashing liquid and toilet bowl cleaner because the government cannot afford it. They told me how they would all contribute money to pay the salary of one of their gofer, whose employment renewal contract has not been approved by the civil service for six months now. They do it out of pity, because the gofer and his wife have been working in their department for six months now, unpaid. And for all their years of service, for all their unreimbursed expenses, this is how the government pays them back -- through retrenchments and unreasonable reassignments.

"But at least you still have the GSIS benefits right," I asked.

"Most of the GSIS benefits have been removed," they said. The benefits they'll be getting are worthless.

Aaaah... I get it. So that's where Winston Garcia's P35B in savings came from. When I first saw that article in PDI (I didn't bother reading it), I actually thought I might have judged this Garcia guy a bit too hastily. But after my lunch yesterday, I realized-- I have never been and will probably never be wrong, about my impression of government officials -- they are always, ALWAYS corrupt.

I just can't stomach the fact that there are actually people who feel it's their right to receive salaries of P50,000 and above, who feel it's their right to spend millions on "government cars," who think it's okay to send their families and relatives abroad for questionable business trips, when other people in their offices are working for six months, UNPAID. How does one justify a P99,000 salary to employees receiving nothing for six months?

"The government has no money. We all know where the money went," they said. O ayan, I didn't even have to say anything.

Their advice for people thinking of going into government service?

"Please don't."