Saturday, September 20, 2008

A Rockstar Is Only As Good As His Last Party

I didn't forget. I didn't try to forget; nor did I try to make my friends forget.

It's just that, with all my social activities over the last 3 months, and with the job-shift that will happen on the same week as my birthday, I couldn't muster enough energy, interest and resources to come up with something for my 28th birthday. And you know what they say, "A rockstar is only as good as his last party". If I can't top my weeklong 27th birthday festivities, I'd rather not do anything this year.

However, there are still personal tasks that need to be done. These are traditions that I have grown accustomed with over the years, and none of my birthdays is ever complete without them. They are, in no particular order, the following:

  • get hammered;
  • get laid;
  • be nice (at least once) to at least person I dislike;
  • sms Rems, Mai and any of my exes;
  • offer a minute of silence for Oca;
  • meditate;
  • reflect on where I was, where I am now and where I want & do not want to be;
  • and accept gifts (my wishlist this year is composed of, but not limited to--- "Oprah Winfrey: The 20th Anniversary DVD Collection"; books by David Sedaris; books by Haruki Murakami; orchestra seat tickets to October performances in HK of Nederlands Dans Theater l, Paul Taylor Dance Co., and Rodgers & Hammersteins' Cinderella starring Lea Salonga)

It normally takes me more than four days to accomplish all these. So if you're a friend or a drinking buddy who wants so badly to spend time with me on my birthday week and but can't because I need to complete my self-assigned birthday tasks, you can help speed up the process by sending a gift. That way, the last task on the list is finished quickly.

Moi as a debutante and a bartender
on Day 7 of my 27th birthday week.
Party at Volume, Music by DJ Stonedog, hair and make-up by Chris,
party coordination and documentation by Dan,
beauty courtesy of Rems & Oca

Thursday, September 18, 2008

It All Started On A CX Flight (Part 3)

dtsalvanajr wrote on May 27, '07, edited on May 27, '07
Rye keeps the recipe for his menudo a secret - he even closes the door of our kitchen when he cooks menudo. I tried several times to ask him what's his secret, but he never told me until that day when he had to ask me to cook his recipe because he did not have the luxury of time to prepare his menudo for his "special friend's" farewell party... and so he didn't have any choice but to rev
eal the secret to me and made me promise not to tell anyone. Upon knowing, I realized Rye's secret was so simple, yet it creates a very delicious version of menudo. Just like Rye - a flamboyant, expressive and colorful individual who brightens the day of many people around him, be it at work or on a yacht full of strangers. And his creative juices just keeps on flowing! Just like his menudo, beneath Rye's dynamic persona is a simple secret - a recipe I can not tell anyone, but I'm sure anyone can tell.

--posted as a comment on the original Multiply entry.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

It All Started On A CX Flight (Part 2)

The Swarovskis are currently accepting applications for Julius's replacement. As most of us know, our dear Julius aka Walnut Swarovski, is moving to London in a couple of days to settle down with his partner, Nige. As a result, we have one vacant spot in the Swarovski family.

Qualifications for "Swarovski #4" are as follows:

  • has to fit the physical sketch of a typical "Asian hottie" (i.e., is naturally tan; has full and solid pecs, rock-hard abs, tight butt, and fine, black hair; has strong black eyes and luscious lips; is not too tall and not too short; has well-developed lats, delts, biceps and triceps; has disproportionately long arms)
  • has to be fun-loving, energetic, dynamic and drama-free
  • has to be patient enough to deal with nutmeg's quirks and drama queen-ness especially when nutmeg is in love or is trying to fall in love
  • has to be humble enough to deal with coco's mood swings especially when they are left to share a room for more than 6 months
  • has to be mature enough to deal with almond's immaturity especially when he's bored and he turns on his ipod
  • has to be willing to share his last few dollars when his friends have absolutely nothing
  • has to be able to muster enough pride to be part of the Swarovski family
  • has to be willing to wear humiliatingly short cut-off jeans and perform "YMCA" in front of a multitude of people he works with
  • has to be able to articulate his dreams, regrets and passions and be willing share them to his Swarovski family
  • has to be capable of discounting coco's, almond's and nutmeg's flaws in order to let their bond grow and mature
  • has to have the heart to love selflessly, give whole-heartedly and accept people unconditionally
  • has to be tolerant enough to allow each individual Swarovski to make his own choices in life and learn from them
  • has to be appreciative of his friends without being cheesy
  • has to be able to know when to tell his friends to stop when his friends are being self-destructive
  • has to be loved and admired by our close friends: verna, the sea creatures, the fegis, etc.
  • has to be able to confidently, but not conceitedly, stand in a room full of people who fancy him
  • has to have mastered his own adobo and shrimp in butter and garlic recipes

If you think you have what it takes to take over the spot of Walnut, email us. Otherwise, don't waste your time and ours. We won't settle for anything less than Julius.

NOTE TO JULIUS: We love you, Julius. We hope you know that. We will miss you terribly. I doubt we will find anyone as good as you to replace you in our hearts.

P.s. Don't call us, we'll call you.

---originally published as "Casting Call: Swarovski #4" on April 27, 2007

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Saturday, September 13, 2008

It All Started On A CX Flight (Part 1)

It seems to me that despite the wide variety of dishes we three (four, including Julius) are capable of making, these three stand out to be our own trademark recipes. The reason is not that these are what we make most often, but that these are what people equate our personalities with.

Chris’s Binagoongan, for example, has the balanced qualities of extreme saltiness and extreme sweetness. He keeps his culinary interpretation of Pork Binagoongan minimalist. Unlike the elaborate versions one could find in Filipino specialty restaurants, the only non-pork ingredient he includes are subtlely-flavored, separately-fried eggplants. So there are basically just 4 flavors one can experience in his binagoongan: that of the shrimp paste, of the pork, of the eggplant, and of the sugar. Only four, but in a heightened, emphatic fashion. The same is true with Chris’s personality. He has very few moods – fun, child-like, artistic and bitchy. What you see is what you get. No hidden agenda, no pretensions. Only four, but in a heightened, emphatic fashion.

Dan’s Bistik is characterized by a heady tug-o-war between citrusy sourness and soy saltiness and a sweet-piquant hint of white onions. Much like his Bistik, Dan is a typical Gemini: interestingly bi-polar. He can be the wildest, craziest person in the room one minute and be an uptight prude the next. He can sing “Someone Like You” to his heart’s content at 7:00pm and be talking to me about the pitfalls of falling in love again at 9. Very few people know that beneath Dan’s cynical, jaded fa├žade is a sweet, loyal person who’d go the extra mile and sacrifice his own comforts for a friend.

My Menudo is just delicious. Period. Very much like me. Dare to cotradict?!?

---condensed from "A Reflection On Julius Ebreo's Blog, Et Al.", published on May 26, 2007

Friday, September 12, 2008

Change Is Over. It's Time To Rant.

Last night, I promised I wouldn't rant about a colleague, because I was having a day worth relishing. But I also promised I would rant about that colleague tonight. And since I know that that colleague reads my blog, I feel that I owe it to that colleague to fulfill my promise of blogging about that colleague tonight. So here goes...

You're stupid.

Pardon my unapologetic crudeness, but there's no better way of putting it. You're stupid. Sugar-coating my statement and writing in a more sophisticated (read: tactful) way will diminish the intensity by which I appraise you. Note: I appraise you. Not your intellectual value, or your limited vocabulary, but you. As a whole. As a person. As a stupid person.

Don't tell me to not take your criticisms on my performance personal. Because as a so-called artist, every work I do: whether it be a choreographic output, an onstage performance, a 45-minute class participation, or a blog entry, I put my heart and soul into it. Everything I do is a reflection of who I am. It symbolizes my past, my dreams, and my hunger. My pains, my triumphs and my desires. It is my soul --- stripped off of any superficiality, and bare-naked for every-fucking-one to see --- that I present to every-fucking-one who has enough time or interest to observe.

See, if I were an accountant, I could probably take your criticism with a smile and blame the calculator for being wrong. But I am not. Every pas-de-bouree and step-ball-change that I do is embedded with a piece of me. So every criticism that you throw at me is a personal attack.

If you don't have enough decency to stand by your own opinions, just say so. That'd be easier for me to understand than you saying, "Don't take it personal, Rye." The former speaks of your low self-esteem upbringing, which is easy to work on. The latter is just plain stupidity and is inexcusable. You chose to tread the path of a life in show business. You should know what it takes to be performer, the same way that you should know the difference between a releve and a rise, Or a pique and a releve, which obviously you don't.

So what is the point that I am making here?

My point is, I am my work and my work is me. You praise my work, and I am driven to tears of fulfillment and gratitude because in actuality, it is I that you praise. You criticize my work, you criticize me. I can accept criticisms, but I am (as a person capable of feeling and thinking) entitled to react to your criticism. Don't tell me to not take it personal because it is personal. Always. In all ways.

Do you get it? Probably not. Because you're stupid.
Oh, and while we are in the subject of your stupidity, can you please, for the love of God, brush up on your subject-predicate agreement?

Thursday, September 11, 2008

For A Change

Today, for a change, I got up at 6:30 am, determined to make it to my unusually early 8:30am call time at work.

Today, for a change, water was the first thing that went into my body, and not nicotine. Second was orange juice. 

Today, for a change, I decided to wear a baseball cap instead of poisoning my hair with styling product.

Today, for a change, I smiled at the first person who stole my seat on the train, instead of killing her with dagger looks. And even if she didn't apologize or even pretend to be sorry at all, I didn't mind. For a change.

Today, for a change, I played Ryan Cayabyab's Dancing In The Rain on my Ipod while in transit to work, instead of my upbeat, meaningless playlist labelled "On-The-Go 2".

Today, for a change, I had a decent breakfast (complete with all the three food groups we were taught in grade school) sitting down --- and took the time to chew and swallow it the right way.

Today, for a change, I had only a cup of coffee, instead of 5, with only two packs of brown sugar instead of 3 per serving.

Today, for a change, I didn't give in to laziness. I dragged myself into the gym, and finished all my back and triceps exercises -- 3 sets per. And finished my whole abs routine, without cheating.

Today, for a change, I took the train to Tung Chung from Sunny Bay, instead of to Central.

Today, for a change, I had mooncake and green tea at home from 8-9:30pm instead of free vodka at Volume.

Today, for a change, I felt good about staying in despite the fact that my closest friends were out, painting the town pink.

Today, for a change I am counting my blessings while enjoying the E-fu noodles with curry beef brisket that Law bought for me from what is known as the best noodle house in HK, and delivered hot and fresh right to my bedroom (I swear I didn't even have to get up from my bed) by Dan, instead of ranting about a colleague. (It's been a wonderful day. I'd be stupid to allow anybody or anything to spoil it. I'll blog about you, dear colleague, tomorrow instead.) 

Good night!

turning in at 1:30am, instead of 3:30. For a change.

Friday, September 05, 2008


I wish I could tell you how much I love you.

I wish I could tell you that despite our many awkward moments, our three years spent together means so much to me.

I wish I could let you know that despite my sporadic bickering and whining, there's no other place I'd rather be but right here with you.

I wish you knew that you exhaust me a lot. Still, some of the biggest life lessons I've learned, I learned from you. With you. So I guess it's all worth it.

I wish you know that I will miss you. Immensely. I am not the slightest bit scared of moving forward with my life; but the comfortable, uncomplicated life you provided me with, will be very, very difficult to part with.

I wish there was a way to let you know how much I mean everything I am saying right now. But words have become powerless. And my limbs and the steps that I know as a dancer, are inadequate to even create a dance piece to honor you.

I wish I had enough time to right the wrongs I've done along the way; and enough time to create more loving memories to get by, even after the sights and sounds of Hong Kong have faded from the heart.

But 24 days --- that's all we have left. 24.

Ergib Dich: A Work In Progress

Ayi & Heihei, waiting for my brain to function

Heihei, I must admit,
interprets this feline step far better than I envisioned
(and the boy even has a bad knee!)

the "resistance lift", that,
when the sultry Ayi does, somehow looks more like an orgasmic one.
Can't blame her.
She's a girl that can launch a thousand ejaculations
(even without meaning to)!

Rye: So this piece is all about push-and-pull.
Of coming-and-going. It tells the story of (something something)

Ayi: It's your story!
Rye: Shut up. Take it from the top.

You'll love his extensions.

Ayi pretending to analyze the assisted drop I was demonstrating;
but in reality, she was really thinking how she could cheat the toebreaker.

Ayi learning the basics of rimming.

all photos were taken by Proceso Gelladuga
*double-click on images to enlarge
*images may be used but only if linked back to this page

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

No Ordinary Sunday

Enan needed to stay in bed.

Dan needed some peace and quiet (and darkness).

Steve needed to find an ATM machine.

So did Law.

I needed some Sunday sunshine.

Insisting on going with them, I went on the elevator with Steve and Law and took Dan's camera with me. It was no ordinary Sunday. It just had to be documented.

August 17, 2008.
10ish in the morning.

right outside of Steve's building.
Despite Steve's protestations against me bringing a camera,
he smiled when I pointed and shot.

they walked fast, trying to lose me,
because I was too bubbly for a Sunday morning,
and I was starting to wear them out.

the blind leading the blind
(private joke. don't ask.)

Ok, so in this photo...
Steve just finished his business with the machine.
I, obviously was behind the camera.
What was Law doing?

After being rudely ignored by fellow Filipinos
who probably thought we were a trio of misfits who would kikil them,
(ugh! what judgement!)
we finally got a HK local passerby to agree to take our picture.

We then went back to Steve's place, a little after 11 for brunch: vodka, coke and Yahoo Messenger.

About A Boy And A Talking Dandelion

image credit: Daily Painting

Dandelion: Matalino ka e. Alam mo naman yun diba? Pero sa mga ganyang bagay, hindi masyado. Alam mo na ngang mali, pinipilit mo pa. Mahilig kang nasasaktan e. Pinapahirapan mo lagi sarili mo e.

(cut to 5 minutes later)

Dandelion: Di ka kasi mapakali nang wala. Alam mo, friend.... Pokpok ka. You're a slut. Sorry ha? Pero ganun talaga.

Boy: (smiling sincerely) Thank you.

Dandelion: Alam mo yun... (attempts to explain further)

Boy: I appreciate the honesty, really.

Dandelion: Talaga?

Boy: Oo. Kasi nga diba, you're my voice of reason? Ikaw yung mirror ko. Ikaw yung nagsasabi ng totoo, kahit gaano kasakit. Sinasabi mo lang, as it is --- as an observation, nang walang halong judgement. Hindi nandadaot. Kaya I value your opinion.

Dandelion: Hanggang ngayon?

Boy: Oo.

...and then a wingless angel flew by and disrupted the drama.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Ode To A Faghag

In the deep blackness of the night, I aroused from my deep slumber, and found myself submerged in your embrace.

Like the eggshell to the unborn chick, your arms wrapped my being and protected me from the cold. My head, light and floating, you held in your hand, giving me a momentary episode of serenity, when the world outside struggled against hatred and bile. In your bosom --- your tender, comforting bosom --- my face was buried, and the warmth of your feminine body emanated to my skin. I could hear the calm, steady beating of your heart. It was what told me I was home. Safe and home.

Never before, since I learned the dynamics of sex, have I allowed any woman get to such close physical proximity.

Never before had any woman, other than my own biological mother, made me allow myself to succumb in such need for refuge.

It was the beauty of your spirit and your maternal raison d'etre that told me it was ok to embrace my vulnerability and be a child --- a defenseless, needy child --- once more.

I took a few breaths to relish the moment and in your arms, I said "Good night" to world around us.