Sunday, June 27, 2010

A Bizarre Sunday... and a Lizard?

I'm remembering this Sunday (June 27, 2010). I just had the not-so-nice Sunday of my life.

Personally, I really think that a Sunday is suppose to be a happy day, right? Because first of all there's no class since it's a weekend, and the fact that you get to rest your tired body from the grueling activities in school during the weekdays. I am actually looking forward to a great, peaceful, and relaxing weekend in order to ease my senses, but how can I afford that expectation if things are not going my way. Am I right, or am I right?

I often wake up irritated every Sunday morning because of my bad sleeping habit. However, today I felt light and happy as I woke up just a few moments ago, and I was really surprised. We went to church early in the morning to attend mass, and honestly, I COULDN'T pay attention to what the father has been telling the people because my attention span is as short as short shorts (WTH?!). Anyway, the truth is, my brother and I keeps on goofing around (why am I always using this term?! LOL!).

We caught sight of a girl in the church, who happens to be one of the little sisters (triplets actually) of my brother's friend. She has an angelic features which made her pleasing to our eyes. We were so amazed of how independent and behave she acted in the church. She's kind of holy if you will see her. She wears decent clothes (unlike the other girls in the church who looks slutty in their outfits). She kneels in the floor, not in the kneeling cushion, enduring the pain. She pays attention to what the father has been telling. Every time I see her, she makes me realize how imperfect, immature, and bad I am as God's child. Every time I see her, it makes me want to cry and I don't know why. There's an incident where they (including her sisters) knelt wupon receiving the holy host. I was like "Wow! I can't believe such people exists!" My brother and I call people like them "swabe," meaning "cool to be true." I actually wanna be like them because of their spontaneity. And up to now, I can't get over it.

After that, we proceeded to SM Bicutan because I plan this day as my haircut day. My mom and I went to Going Straight Salon for haircut. I actually explained to the fag hairdresser/barber the kind of hairstyle I want to achieve. I told him that not to cut my hair really short, only trim the excessive hair, which covers my ears. I actually told him that the length of my hair is okay, and should not be cut anymore. I also told him not to use a razor, and that the former hairdresser, who cut my hair before, used only a pair of scissors in cutting my hair. And yet he used a razor! And the worst, he cut my hair really short that made my face look bigger! I also hate what he did to the back part of my hair, it's kind of filthy in my eyes. Moreover, he's like complaining that I should cut it in a "barber's cut" way. Like what does he care, right?! I just hate that fag guy! He ruined my hair, and now I have a bad hair day!

Actually, he was also the one who did my mom's hair... and my mom was infuriated after that because he cut it too short than what my mother has told him. He doesn't listen to what his clients are instructing him despite the fact that they are being paid in a huge amount of money. By the way he's a newbie and I want him fired (if only I have the power to)!

After that incident we went to eat at Joey Pepperoni Pizzeria. I was really hungry and upset after what happened to our hairs. We ordered Messicana and Bacon & Mushroom pizzas and told us to wait for FIFTEEN MINUTES. We waited for fifteen minutes... and another fifteen minutes, that's THIRTY MINUTES of waiting!!! For me, it's alright to wait that long, but since my brother is in a hurry for his nursing review class, which will take place in the afternoon, we need to be home immediately. I, being the youngest in the family, can never complain nor whine when the elders "asked" me to demand our orders because it's taking a lot of time. And I found out that their oven toaster was damaged for some minutes that pended our orders! They didn't informed us that they're having a problem in their kitchen that made us wait stupidly unaware of what was happening to our orders. And since their pizzas are delicious, we just forgave them.

When we got home, it's freakin' hot like hell!!! And I tried doing a blog about Leah Dizon, but the "html something" seems damaged... thrice! So I got really annoyed and deleted that post of mine! Grrr! Probably I'll remake that blog soon when I return to my calm and peaceful self. I just hate it when things are not going as what I expect it to turn out.

And of course, before I forget to tell everybody, we actually found an iguana-like lizard in our window. It was really bizarre because I never imagine a weird specie would be found sticking in our window. It looks like an iguana, a smaller version. It's color yellow, has a long tail, and has fins.


(It's this one. And I don't exactly know what it is.
If you happen to know, please tell me. Thanks!)


Friday, June 25, 2010

The Rise of Plastics

Imagine being in a world full of gorgeous people. Doesn't it feels like heaven?

The world today sees beautiful people in a different way. And when I say beautiful, I refer to both men and women. Many would probably agree that if a person has a chiseled nose, voluptuous lips, perfectly white teeth, glowing and blemish-free skin (disregarding the color), sexy body, perfect jawline, they would say that he/she is gorgeous. Aesthetically speaking, they are really perfect, I would say.



Because of this notion, people desires to have an Angelina Jolie-like or Tom Cruise-like face. Even I am guilty of being envious of those people who are perfect in the eyes of the society. And from this desire, the world has gave way to the rise of Plastics by undergoing Plastic Surgery, as well as my interest on that notion.

As a growing teen, I am really into Plastic Surgery for the fact that I see myself ugly during those times (since I don't have a chiseled-like nose and perfectly white teeth), and envious to the people I see in television (especially those Korean guys). In fact I even made a study of it as my term paper back when I was in third year high school. I was actually influenced by media and the reality TV show called "Extreme Makeover," where the participants undergo Plastic Surgery to become beautiful and acceptable in the society, especially in the United States where many young people are so obsessed of being beautiful or handsome. They are so conscious of their appearance that some go under the knife.


(She was an Extreme Makeover participant)

Speaking of Korean stars, if I'm not mistaken, they have the most number of people undergoing Plastic Surgery. I even read in an article that by the time they reach 16 years old, their parents are actually the ones who are forcing them to go under the knife. Can you believe it?! And for the record, I think that majority of the Korean stars had undergone Plastic Surgery that's why they really look so attractive.


(Park Min Young)


(Hyo Yeon of Girls Generation)



Because of Korea's obsession for an aesthetically-enhanced beauty, they had coined the term "ulzzang," meaning "best face." In the internet, there have been competitions for ulzzang people, and even other nationalities like Americans, Filipinos, Chinese, and Japanese are also participating in it. Because of that popularity, many people dream of having an "ulzzang looks" because it makes them really cute, especially when they portray the innocent look, the teary-eyed look, or the pouting of lips, which became the trademark of ulzzang people. And for them, this is a stepping stone to their showbiz dream in Korea.


(An ulzzang girl with teary-eyed looks)

Not only that, Plastic Surgery has also gained popularity even in third world countries like the Philippines and Thailand. Actually Thailand became really well-known for being the most affordable when it comes to Plastic Surgery, that's why it gave way to the so-called "Medical Tourism," which boosts their tourism industry. They not only perform rhinoplasty or breast augmentation, they also perform sex change (bizarre, right?).


(The evolution of Parinya Charoenphol, a former Muay Thai star)

In the Philippines, many actors and actresses also had undergone Plastic Surgery handled by the most prominent Plastic surgeons in the country such as Dra. Vicky Belo and Drs. Manny & Pie Calayan. No wonder many local stars have those perfect face, glowing skin, and sexy body like these endorsers:


(Claudine Barreto)


(Piolo Pascual as Belo endorser)

(Katrina Halili)

(and the creator, Dra. Vicky Belo in her 50's and still looking young)

If you can notice the similarities of these aesthetically-enhanced people, they have white skin and chiseled-like nose because many Filipinos sees "white is beautiful" and I was once guilty of it. Many Filipinos have been patronizing these people because they look attractive. The tendency is that, many are using glutathione in order to be whiter and many are also undergoing rhinoplasty or nose job in order to look more mestizo. However, the cons would probably be the danger or the risk of these kind of surgery because anything that goes through the body which is unnecessary is carcinogenic, meaning, the risk of cancer is higher.

But what can we do if this is the trend in this era, right? As long as they're happy, then let's just respect them because even if they are being judged and mocked, at the end of the day they are still beautiful. Besides, undergoing Plastic Surgery will definitely boosts ones confidence and self-esteem. So I'm not against it, and probably I'll end up "going under the knife" too (when I'm rich). LOL!


(And this will probably how I will look like. LOL!)

Images got from:
  • http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_UIuJB0MdD1w/SVcNEEGCIxI/AAAAAAAACUA/1ujPsIMsJ2k/s400/Alice_ashely_greene.jpg
  • http://explosivechutney.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/extreme-makeover.jpg
  • http://img2.ak.crunchyroll.com/i/spire4/08262008/2/1/9/f/219f0d3ec344d0_full.png
  • http://img2.ak.crunchyroll.com/i/spire4/08262008/8/9/b/c/89bcd07e9445c0_full.jpg
  • http://mamabum88.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/1au.jpg
  • http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_lzCxZa4u7UU/SbRWbYmFilI/AAAAAAAABhY/tj8qwLt_5_c/s400/ulzzang.jpg
  • http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_x2nt9AmcZKw/Sfb9i1vGrZI/AAAAAAAAAqc/4usKry7XoGA/s400/3406897679_685827a4f7_o.jpg
  • http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_ebs9R3BuEKQ/SSTFWcW5JBI/AAAAAAAAAqg/hfNJssmnLJs/s320/claudine-225x300.jpg
  • http://www.piolopascual.net/wp-content/uploads/piolobelomedical.jpg
  • http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_BpgCc7fXp28/S0BF_9gu80I/AAAAAAAAF10/wU5vRyNHqg0/s400/katrina+halili.jpg
  • http://www.whynotcoconut.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/20091008101039715_beasarah_front.jpg
  • http://mandmdebatetheuniverse.files.wordpress.com/2009/05/vicki-belo.jpg

Thursday, June 24, 2010

When I was a Tour Guide

It's been two weeks since the first day of school began. And it never occurred to me that I will be touring the freshmen around the University. And yes, I ended up being a tour guide due to a friend's request. Though I wasn't really sure of it, and I was like, "WHAT WAS I THINKING?!"

Two days ago, I was really nervous because it was the first time that I'm ushering freshmen people for their orientation in the morning. I'm actually quite shy because I JUST AM. Good thing I had a partner during that time, and it made me at ease. However, he left me because he was suppose to be backstage, practicing. And I was alone ushering the section that was assigned to me (1H3). And luckily, I had a friend (who happens to be an usher as well) and the class assigned to her was next to mine. So we ended up talking and goofing around (it was really childish of us!).

The first part of the program was kind off interesting, especially the performance of the intenzyc (if I got that right) dancers. But as time goes by I felt really, really lethargic--probably it was because of the chilliness of the air conditioner and the lullaby-like speech of a certain speaker, who happens to be my former professor whom I don't want to mention for security reasons. LOL! Oh well, I don't want to talk about it.

Going back to my "tour guiding experience," we were suppose to tour the freshmen around the campus in the afternoon. But before that, during my break time, I went to see my friends and hang out with them for awhile. And when I saw my French professor with a little girl. I was really amazed whenever they converse in pure French! (o_O) I was really astounded that I wanted to sit with them and listen to what they were talking about (though I really don't understand it. LOL!).

In the afternoon, together with a tour guide friend, we returned immediately to the Medicine Auditorium to prepare ourselves. I actually had fun distributing the give-away bags to the freshmen. It was like being an attendant in a seminar or an event (are we not? LOL!).

The time has come that we tour the freshmen.

It was actually nerve-wracking at first because I didn't know what to expect and I didn't know if I'd be able to please them all. Originally, I was planning to deliver my tour as professionally as I imagine it, but I felt really FAKE, seriously. That's why I tried exuding my confidence (as what the dean had told us). Good thing I had companions. There were three of us who toured the class assigned to us, which is 1H2. Honestly, they were so reactive and energetic, and I got carried away by their cheerful personalities. My personality did change as we walk through the campus--from the serious professional to the childish me. I was light to them, and we were goofing around and laughing during the whole tour.

I won't forget the time when the student (named Maricar) cramped her feet. I didn't know what to do and we were left behind by their classmates. It was really hilarious because we actually made her sit at the gutter and tried to stretch her legs and feet. We were like paramedics! We kept on laughing because people around us were starring at us. Probably they were amused... by our mini show. LOL!

I wanted the tour to be as exciting and informative as I imagined it. And as a tour guide, I've learned that one should never make his/her clients bored, but reactive and excited because at the end of the day, you don't only earn money and gain experience, but also you gain many friends. And from that experience, it actually made me more confident and I did gain lots of friends. (^o^)

By the way, it didn't occur to me that I wanted to become a tour guide someday. And I can't imagine myself being one someday (contradicting, right?). Oh well, I just did it to gain experience. And it turned out to be memorable for me. (n_n)v


(Image c/o Camille Serrano, my friend and co-tour guide)

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Aklan Adventures: The Wake of My Grandmother

I'm sharing again to all of you another hair-raising experience of mine when I visited Aklan about two years ago to attend the wake of my late grandmother.


Two years ago (March 2008), we visited Aklan to celebrate Holy Week, where we always participate in the procession. During that time, my grandmother was lying in her bed, very weak, but still managed to lived despite her senility. We enjoyed our stay there, and we even went to Boracay to wind up and to tan a little. We really savored the goodness of our stay in Aklan that time. After a week, we had to return home because I still have my senior graduation practice, and I couldn't miss that one.

I had graduated and here came my summer vacation.

One afternoon, after cycling with a friend, I went straight home to relax my tired feet. When my cousin got home after some hours, she had an improtant announcement--sad and heartbreaking. My grandmother died a month after we visited her. Thus, we had to book another flight going to Aklan to attend her wake. It was a rough flight because when we reached near Panay Island, it was raining. The ambiance really went along with the death of my grandmother. I was with my mother and cousin by the way.

My elder cousin picked us up in the airport. And while in the car, I didn't know what to think. I was really enigmatic that time because of the things that had happened. It was so sudden!


When we reached the house of my grandmother, there were a lot of people--family members, friends, and neighbors. I saw my grandmother lying in her casket. I was surprised that she was wearing very thick make-up and very pink lipstick. I was like "FOR REAL?" LOL! Anyway, moving on, the environment was kind off heavy during that time, and the air was so stuffy inside the house, it was probably because of the many visitors.

When my grandmother was to be buried, I was wearing a very nice attire, matched with my anime-like, spiky hair and cool shades. My cousin was like "WOAH! Are you going to the cemetry or what?! You're kinda hip!" I was like the center of attention that time. LOL! Everything was perfect but my shoes. I didn't bring any shoes and when my father arrived there, he brought me my black school shoes! I was like OKAY??! It didn't match with what I was wearing. So I ended up wearing my uncle's small sneakers that nearly killed my poor feet. I was actually having a hard time walking, and I couldn't wait to remove that shoes off of my feet.

After that busy day, we ended up really tired and mournful, especially my grandfather who loved her so much. I stayed there for two weeks because I felt like staying there even longer. And I never thought that I would experience unbelievable creepy things after my grandmother's death.

One day, my cousin, together with her two daughters, invited me to go out and explore the city of Kalibo... and that's just what we did. It was getting late and dark. We have to drop off one of her girls to rest in their house since she had a fever during that time, and we still have to go to a fiesta.

It was 8 in the evening that we left their house. And in order to reach my grandfather's house, we had to cross a very dark street. On our way, I was really shocked and my eyes widened because I saw a "somehow glowing" old man walking along the dark street. I still couldn't believe what I saw. It freaked me out.

When we reached my grandfather's house, my cousin went in alone to ask my aunt to allow me to go to the plaza, and that we might be going home late. My niece and I was left alone in the car. We were getting scared because it was pitch-black outside and there was no people around. Suddenly, a wild carabao ran really fast. We got scared because we didn't know where it appeared and where it went. I told myself, "could it be paranormal?" After some minutes, my cousin went back and told us that the brother of my grandfather died too! It was a week after my grandmother had died! I was creeped out because he told me that the man I saw would probably be the brother of my grandma. My heart throbbed quickly!


The horror didn't stop there. One night, as I was alone watching Bubble Gang, I didn't notice how intense the bark of the dogs were because I keep on laughing really hard! My cousin called me and told me to sleep early. When I turned off the tv and went to bed, she told me that the dogs were barking weirdly in the middle of the night. Probably, the spirits of my grandmother and her brother were lingering around the house. It was scary! And when I started to sleep, I felt my ankles getting colder. Honestly, it freaked me out. I never thought that ghosts could possibly exist. May their souls rest in peace.



Images got from:
  • http://sketchedout.files.wordpress.com/2007/10/scared.jpg

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Aklan Adventures: An Encounter with a Tiktik

A tiktik is known to be as another form of aswang, which is similar to a manananggal (a lady aswang who is capable of separating her torso from her legs). They are the Philippine version for vampires and werewolves, however, unlike vampires and werewolves, they are not capable of thinking rationally, and they follow their instincts just like wild, hostile beasts. They are hideous-looking, flying creatures who usually victimize pregnant women, and they even take the innocent lives of people living in rural areas brutally.



Aklan, aside from Capiz, is also known as the haven for various aswang(s), mambabarang(s) (witches), demons, and elemental creatures such as evil elves, kapre(s) (half-human, half-horse creatures who live in Balete trees), and diwata(s) (fairies or enchantresses). It's pretty scary to think that those creatures might actually exist, and the fact that they also take away human lives in order to survive... in the most grotesque manner.

Aklan is my province. We visit the place yearly to celebrate Holy Week, or simply, just to wind up and relax.

One of my most horrifying experience in Aklan happened a year ago.

It was already dusk during that time. My father, together with an older cousin, invited me to visit the wake of my previous yaya, who I fondly call Manang. We were trying to locate the place, but unfortunately, we failed. We sought the help of a relative who happened to know the house of Manang, and she accompanied us. It's starting to get dark, and we didn't bring any flashlight, but luckily we do have our cell phones.

I never thought that the route going to Manang's place would be a savage, dense forest. I was like WOAH! At last, we reached Manang's house situated in a very remote area. It saddens me a lot to think that the woman (aside from my mother) who raised me was already inside a casket, lifeless. May her soul rest in peace.

We stayed there for a couple of hours, until it was seven in the evening. We are about to bid our goodbyes to them, but unfortunately, the rain poured really hard. So we had to stay there until the rain stops. They offered us snacks, such as peanuts and juice, which I really enjoyed munching. The rain stopped at around ten in the evening. I was really worried for the fact that we are using the same route (the savage, dense forest) in order to get our asses off from that place.

Fortunately, we were still with a relative who knew pretty well the route even if the inkiness of the night had engulfed the forest. It was still drizzling, and we depended on our cell phones as our only light while we struggled ourselves to find the way. The darkness of our surrounding during that time was really enthralling. It was unbelievably horrifying! My imagination was really playful at that moment. Just imagining myself being alone in my room with lights turned off makes me want to scream. What more being in a savage, dense forest in the vast darkness, right? I mean, who would want to be stuck in a situation like that?

At last we found our way. There was the street. Houses, the street lights, and a few people are also to be found. I thought I was really relieved. But then, when we reached our way to my grandfather's house, it was dark again--no lights in the street, and no people lingering outside. It was still drizzling, and we didn't have umbrellas (How fortunate of us! LOL!). As we made our way to that street, we heard a sound near us. The sound made was like "tiktiktik," though I'm not really certain if it was a tiktik. Then all of a sudden, the relative of ours shouted and said in Aklanon dialect, "Get outta here! I know who you are! I will kill you if you get near us!" I was really terrified after what she shouted. My father told us to hurry up, and even though he was calm, I could still sense the fear in him.

I honestly don't know if that was really a tiktik, or some sort of aswang, but one thing is for sure, we were not safe during that time judging by the situation happened.

I also don't know if such creature exists, and I don't want to believe that they exists because it creeps me out. It is also possible that our playful minds are the only ones who creates such thing. Remember that the mind is great--it can either create or destroy.

Image got from:
  • http://images.elfwood.com/art/j/a/jayjay/manananggal.jpg

Sunday, June 13, 2010

What will happen after TWO DAYS.

I suddenly felt sick and weak.

I started feeling sad and lonely.

I couldn't concentrate well.

At first, I thought it was because of my messy environment (which is our house) that makes me disoriented, but actually it's not. And then I just realize that sooner I will eventually leave the comforts of vacation after two days. TWO DAYS. And at this moment, I'm having what you called "school blues."



I will be an incoming 3rd year college after two days. I really don't know what to expect, and it frightens me so bad. I actually do have an idea of what my junior year would be like, but still, expect the unexpected, right? And even though I already know that my classmates before would still be my classmates (because obviously we're a block section), I still feel uneasy because I still don't feel like going to school.

I honestly hate waking up four in the morning, and forcing myself to eat breakfast. I feel queasy every time I smell the scent of the garlic as my mother sautes it. I just hate it! And I also don't like drinking or even eating dairy products in the morning because I feel really, really sick.



I like taking a bath, but every morning, taking a bath is like a torture because the water that comes out in our shower (which is not the sophisticated, detachable showers with temperature control) is FREAKIN' COLD! I actually scream most of the time. I know there are cheap water heaters available in the market (the circular, red one with mini holes, right?), but I don't dare buying myself one of those "somehow-dangerous-contraptions" because I remember being electrified by it when I was a kid (unfortunately, while pooping! LOL!).



Now that I'm in college, I think I miss having a school bus. Commuting is just as tiring as studying! And after two days, same routine again, walk in the middle of the dawn, ride a trike, walk, wait for an FX, sleep inside, wake up, wait for a jeep, walk in the overpass full of merchandise, walk, walk, WALK! Too much walking for me! Sometimes I even imagine myself riding one of the school buses in UST intended for high school students, but it would be so embarrassing because I will be THE ONLY college student in the university who uses a school bus!!! Oookay, I am "over-imagining" things again.

Thinking that school is about to start, I feel wild moths (if there is such) fluttering in my tummy, my knees weakens, and I stutter as I speak--symptoms of having school blues. Sometimes I just hate myself for being a coward. I mean it's just school, not a surgical room or even a prison, right?

Ever since I was a kid, I always have this "school blues." But of course, the older I get, the lesser my school blues. I remember having accompanied by my yaya when I was in preschool and grade school because I'm pretty scared of school. I imagine it eating me alive, a heartless monster. But as I grew older and gained many friends, I felt more confident. But I still couldn't escape the fact that I'm having a "school-blues-syndrome" whenever school is about to start. It's so high school, right?

Oh well, I guess I have to say goodbye to my vacation, and start preparing myself for school... after two days. (Sigh)

Good Luck to my 7:00 am to 7:00 pm schedule every Tues, Wed, and Thurs. (Whew!)

Images got from:
  • http://moonpointer.com/new/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/13.gif
  • http://mommawannabe.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/hate-milk.jpg
  • http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3045/2389830086_5a2e36de59.jpg

Friday, June 11, 2010

My Personal Review of "The Freedom Writers Diary"

First I was able to see its movie "The Freedom Writers Diary" starring Hilary Swank as Erin Gruwell. I was totally struck by the story because it tackles about Racism, Holocaust, Segregation, and Violence. Every scene in the movie was really inspiring, making me want to read their diary entries.

I tried looking for this book, but it was really hard to find. As I was checking books at Book Sale (Mall of Asia branch), I accidentally ran my fingers through this book. I was really enthralled so I bought it. I was so excited, and started reading it...



The Freedom Writers Diary: How a Teacher and 150 Teens Used Writing To Change Themselves and the World around Them.
by The Freedom Writers with Erin Gruwell.

There is this new English teacher in Wilson High in Long Beach, California. She is White. And Her name is Ms. Erin Gruwell. Most of the class, at first, don't like her for the fact that she is white, and most of her students were not (except for one boy, who felt outcast in his class). Each of these students has a story to tell--different races comes different backgrounds, and Ms. Erin, as their teacher, is trying to figure it out in order to help those kids. Thus, she gave them all journals for them to write everything they wanted to tell--their voices, their stories.


(The real Ms. Erin Gruwell)

Some students were victims of sexual harassment from their uncles, some were involved in gang war. Some of them have a broken family, some were victims of poverty. Some were teased, some were repulsed. Some Asians and Latinos were illegal migrants, Some African-Americans were discriminated to the extent. Some have illness and some were drug-addicts. Some had abortions, some were raped. Bottom line is: They were all victims no matter what their differences were. Despite their differences in colors, they are all the same, victims of injustice. They called it "An Undeclared War."

Erin did everything in order to reconstruct their dilapidated spirits upon reading all their journals. She introduced to them Anne Frank, a Jewish girl, who was a victim of Holocaust, for the fact that they can relate to her. Erin also invited Miep Gies, the kind lady who hid the Frank family, as a speaker. They were all inspired by her story of courage. They told her that she was a hero, but she said "No. I am not a hero, but all of you here."


(Miep Gies)

Erin also invited Zlata Filipovic, a teenager who was a victim of war in Saravejo. More or less, she is said to be the present Anne Frank. She also wrote a diary as she hid from the war. She was also invited by Erin to be a speaker for the Freedom Writers. I was really struck by her answer when she was asked what her race is. Instead of saying what her race really is, she said "I am a human being, just like all of you." Zlata, indeed, is an epitome of justice and equality for the youth.


(Zlata Filipovic)

Little by little, the Freedom Writers started to establish their dilapidated selves, and also they have inspired many youths by their bravery and determination, creating a drastic change in the whole world.

Indeed, they are a catalyst of change in the society.

I genuinely believe that this book is a must read! It is based on a true story that happened many years ago. This book will help you enlighten your mind about racial discrimination. It did inspire me, so I have a strong feeling that this book will inspire you too. (^o^)

Full of real-life drama.

It's really a page turner.

Two thumbs up to the Freedom Writers!!!

Images got from:
  • http://pgteenspace.files.wordpress.com/2008/01/freedomwritersposter.jpg
  • http://orthevie.files.wordpress.com/2010/02/erin-gruwell-color-2005-photoshop.jpg
  • http://www.24oranges.nl/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/miep_gies.jpg
  • http://www.marcjimenez.com/autores_anglofonos/zlata/imagenes/zlata.jpg

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Eve was not Adam's first wife

Before Eve, there was...

Lilith the Seductress

(Lilith as depicted in the ancient times)

Ever since we started entering school, we've learned the Story of Creation where God only made a man and a woman in the person of Adam and Eve. But what we didn't know was the darker, more evil side of the story, the story of Lilith the Seductress, the Mother of Demons, and Adam's real first wife.

According to the story, both Lilith and Adam were made from the dust of the Earth that made her thought she's as equal as Adam. During their most intimate times, both of them didn't want to be on bottom, and refused to lie beneath each other. Lilith was infuriated, thus she left Adam alone in the Garden of Eden, and flew across the Red Sea to find Samael, a fallen angel who is known to be as the Angel of Death, the Seducer, and the Destroyer. He is actually equatable to Lucifer, but nevertheless he remained one of the Lord's servants. Lilith and Samael mated, and had daughters called Lilin (pl.), which are similar to a succubus, the female counterpart of incubus. Lilin seduce men in their sleep, and just like vampires, they draw energy from them in order to sustain themselves. They are enchantresses as many would call it.


(Samael, the Angel of Death)


(Lili [sing. of Lilin], a daughter of Lilith)

Adam was all alone in the Garden of Eden. He had not any partner after Lilith left him, so he asked God to bring Lilith back to him. God ordered the three angels named Senoy, Sansenoy, and Semangelof to find Lilith and bring her back to Adam. They actually had to kill hundreds of her children everyday so she would return, but still, Lilith refused. And so God created Eve for Adam. When Lilith had found out, she wanted to revenge. She told the angels that she will torment the children of Adam and Eve for eternity. And only the names of the three angels can save them from the wrath of Lilith.

I'd say Lilith is the epitome of the bitches in this era. LOL! (kidding!)

What a story, right? So the next time you'll tell your kids or even your future children the story of Adam and Eve, let's not forget that there was once a Lilith in the story. I bet it will make the story more exciting.

Information got from:
  • http://www.datehookup.com/content-the-story-of-lilith-the-seductress.htm
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samael
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lilin
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Succubus
Images got from:
  • http://www.monsalvat.no/lilith1.jpg
  • http://www.templates.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/Samael-by-Kirsi-Salonen.jpg
  • http://media.giantbomb.com/uploads/0/1976/219017-cloi_succubus_large.jpg

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

My Life as a Commuter

I have been commuting since I entered college two years ago. I'm in 3rd year now and as expected, I'm still commuting. I live in Parañaque City, by the way.

During my elementary and high school days, I wasn't used to commute because I have a school bus (though it's not really a bus, it's more of a van or a jeep-type vehicle). I actually hated riding my school bus because I always have to wake up very early because the bus will pick me up FIRST, and bring me home LAST. On top of that, I have to wait inside the sizzling school bus (LITERALLY since they don't use the air conditioner most of the time) for a very, very long time, despite the fact that we pay the same exact price as my busmates. There are actually times that I ride the tricycle going home because I really want to go home early. And from that idea, I said to myself, "I can't wait to commute!"


Until I graduated from high school. AT LAST! I'm free from my hell-like school bus! Yahoo!

Now, I attend University of Santo Tomas in España, Manila. It is like an hour or two just to get to my school. I wouldn't forget my first day going to school since I have to commute from Parañaque to Manila. I did not worry since I was with a friend (I honestly don't know how to get to UST alone, so it was a relief). During my first days of commuting, I trained myself to commute alone and I familiarized myself the route going to school and back home. My feet hurt a lot during those days because commuting requires a lot of walking. I actually did have calluses. But after some times, I got used to it and, fortunately, I'm surviving.

How do I get to school?

Well during my first year, I only knew one way of getting there so I do it in a daily basis. First, I walk, exiting our village, walking pass through another village, and reaching the tricycle (or trike as I call it) terminal. Honestly, I hated riding tricycle in that terminal because majority of those tricycle drivers are overpricing, the fact that there's a discount for students like me. Well that's another story. Going back, of course I will grudgingly ride a tricycle (no choice!) going to a jeepney terminal which is known as Caltex (it was actually once a gasoline station). And from there, I will have to ride a jeepney bound to Pasay City via Skyway. After that, I will walk, battling my way to the LRT Edsa station. I will have to ride LRT Edsa, reaching Central Terminal. And from there, I will walk again and wait for a jeepney. I will again have to ride a jeepney bound to España, and voila! I'm at UST.

It's actually a very long ride to UST from Parañaque. If fortunate and no traffic, it will only take me an hour to get there. But if there is, then good luck to me. (O_o)

I hated that route. I really hate it because it brings back bad memories of my stolen cell phone (Nokia 5300). I really liked that phone, and it was actually a gift from my parents! I didn't know where and how it was taken from my bag, I just discovered that my bag was open when I reached a certain mall on my way to school. I was really devastated and I didn't know what to do during those times. I was like, "where's my phone? where is it? WHERE?!" For some minutes, I was losing my mind! But of course, I still need to get to school. As the saying goes, "the show must go on." And now, I got over it since I have a new one. (^o^) \m/


(Awww... I miss you so much!)

I had experienced a lot of bad memories on my way to school via "that 'cursed' route" like being stuck in the LRT station because of their so called "Red Code" or some color code, which I really don't understand. Because of that, I was late twice for my French Class!, which pulled my grade BIG TIME! (Je suis desole Monsieur Narvaez!)

Talking about LRT, I really hate it when people in the station gets really wild as they enter the train. It's like a jungle out there!!! As if it's the last train. WHEW! In addition to that, most of the time, we're like sardines inside! UNBELIEVABLY crowded! And if you're lucky, you get to smell the hideous, terrifying body odors of some people! Goodness! I actually experienced those unfortunate happenings, and I had a trauma... kidding! Those are the things to be expected during rush hours so be ready... :'D

After a year and a half, I finally changed my way. From that very long way, I finally manage to use the shortcut (for 50 cents) where I have to pass through a depressed area (you know what I mean). Surprisingly, some people in that area do know my name (though I really don't recognize them)! Oh well, moving on. After passing that shortcut, I have to ride a tricycle (and take note, I like riding tricycles in that area because they're fair and fast). After riding a trike, either I will ride the pedicab or just walk since it can possibly be done. And from there, you will just wait for an FX bound to Lawton via Roxas Boulevard. And from Lawton, I will ride the jeepney, and voila! I'm at UST. It was actually the easiest and the most convenient way for me. Besides, it passes through the Airport, where I get to see planes taking off and landing, which really inspires me a lot.

I also take the same route going home, and while on my way, I usually take a nap in the FX. I actually had funny experiences in the FX like sleeping while my mouth is open, or sudden movement while I'm asleep. I also experienced a girl beside me who keeps on swaying in a circular movement while she's asleep. It was really funny! I just couldn't contain myself and ended up giggling. And sometimes there are some people who snores loudly as they sleep in the FX. I also experienced being stuck in a traffic jam on a hot afternoon. It was really F*CKIN' HOT inside, like an oven toaster!!!

I also tried riding the PNR train for your information. The new ones actually. Just 30 minutes and you're home! However, it follows a schedule, which, unfortunately, contradicts to my schedule at school. My only concern is the view you get to see as you ride the train. Depressed area, poverty, and litters. I even saw a man pooping in the grass! Now that's a serious problem--especially regarding their sewage disposal. It saddens me to see that kind of surroundings and I couldn't bear seeing it.


I'd say commuting is really tiring yet fun. You get to experience the outside world. It's challenging as well because you never know what to expect. And also you get to see and meet different people everyday. And as for me, I believe I still have two years to travel that same route going to school, and after that, I'm off internationally! (cross my fingers!) Bon Voyage! (^o^)V

Images got from:
  • http://onefatfrog23.files.wordpress.com/2008/11/school-food-service-equipment.jpg
  • http://swotti.starmedia.com/tmp/swotti/cacheBM9RAWEGNTMWMA==VGVJAG5VBG9NES1NB2JPBGUGUGHVBMVZ/imgnokia%2053002.jpg
  • http://www.pinoyprogress.com/photos/lrt.jpg
  • http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_hac0Jx4d5lY/SjZBC7ME7II/AAAAAAAABZY/HoavMIZczqM/s400/dmutestrunjun15+copy.jpg

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Brown Racists

Why is it that when some Filipinos are discriminated by other races, they become really furious and indignant? The fact that, not some, but many Filipinos are also discriminative in nature. Have anyone thought of it?

Unaware we may be, but the truth is, we give names to many foreigners we see in public places. For example, Chinese people (often regarded as Tsinoy) in the country are addressed by many as "intsik beho," "tulo laway," and "tsekwa." They are also considered as mandurugas (deceitful), land of fakes, and masungit (grumpy). I also just found out from my Tsinoy friend that addressing them as "intsik" is as offensive as calling us "indio." I don't think that's being nice of us.



For Korean people, since they are migrating in our country to study or even to retire (their population has actually reached 1 million here in the Philippines), it is not new to us to see them everywhere. We're all aware of the K-pop invasion, and yes, many find them cute and hip, but still some Filipinos are negating things about them. For an instance, some would address them retokados and retokadas (plastic surgery enhanced) like it's a really bad thing. Some also sees Korean boy bands as gays (It just so happen that it has been in their culture to portray cuteness and gentleness). And some Filipinos are repulsed by Korean girls with armpit hair like it's a sin to have it, right?

But have we looked in the mirror? Many are actually imitating their fashion, hairstyles, and poses. And honestly, I think it doesn't look good for some of us. It just appears that we are copycats and T.H. (or trying hard). Let's just leave those to Koreans because it suits them way better than us. (I'm guilty, I know. LOL!)


For Europeans, despite of their "being nice" to us Filipinos, still, some people talk not-so-nice things behind their backs like they don't smell nice or they're all pedophiles... like WHAT?! Some say that they smell bad, know why? because most European countries have snow that's why they don't take a bath everyday (they might suffer from hypothermia if that's case) and also it has been part of their culture. In addition to that, where do you think the best perfumes are produced? In France, right? which is a European country. Pedophiles. Why do you think pedophiles are coming to our country? Because of poverty, there are parents who actually sell their children in return of money. But take note, not because they are Europeans, meaning they're also pedophiles. Besides, they are actually the advocate of "Stop Child Trafficking" organizations in EU.

For Africans, many would regard them as "ulikba," "uling," "negro," and "itim." Now that's below the belt! There was one Filipino kid who was asked by a professor to draw a white girl and a black girl. After some minutes, she showed her drawing to the professor. When the professor saw the white girl, she drew it nicely with ribbons, and beautiful yellow hair, but when he saw the black girl, it was ugly, and the color was messed up and it was purely black. It's really bothering because kids nowadays sees African people like an ugly monster, where in fact they have a beautiful color. I think it's the fault of Barbara Millicent Roberts (Barbie for short! LOL!) that children in the Philippines are only patronizing white people and hating black or even brown people like most Filipinos. Because of that, whitening soaps, lotions, glutathione capsules are prevalent in the Philippine market.



I suggest that you watch this video in youtube entitled Afro-Pinay: The Quest and The Question. I couldn't attach it in my blog because it's copyrighted. Here's the link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gCpn_M7e5Y0

Moving on... as for Indians, many would call them "bumbay," "5/6," "anghit," and "putok." And some parents would also use them to frighten their innocent children, they would say "Hala! Kukunin ka ng bumbay, 'wag ka makulit!" (Don't be naughty, the bumbay will get you). As if Indians do that, right? Because of those parents, children would grow up mistreating Indian people in the country. Why does Indian people always have to appear as bad people and should be avoided? Which in reality, they are not as evil as many would think. Also, I really think that it offends calling them "5/6," the fact that they are just doing their job to lend money to the people, of course with interest. I think there's nothing wrong with it, besides, it's business. And the most cruel terms, the "putok" and "anghit." Can we blame them if Indians love to eat spicy foods like curry? Even I eat that. Eating spicy foods has been part of their culture, in which it also manifests in their body fumes. Nothing's wrong with it, let's just be open-minded.

Also, sometimes, Filipinos are also considering Arabs as bumbay, which is kind of bizarre! As well as Europeans or Australians as Americans; and Koreans, Japanese, and Vietnamese as Chinese. Whew!



And not only that, I also find many Filipinos guilty for discriminating their fellow Filipinos. Some Filipinos living in the city sees themselves superior than people in the rural areas. Not because they are in the city doesn't mean that they are greater, right? I actually received that kind of treatment when I went to my province in Aklan and because I also have a fair skin. I told my cousins that not because I'm from Manila doesn't mean I'm way better than anyone else here. Moreover, some fair-skinned Filipinos would think that they are more beautiful than dark-skinned Filipinos. It also applies for the indigenous people residing in remote areas like the ethnic group of Aeta. Many are like belittling them because they are uneducated and, worse, they have a dark skin. This is how colonial mentality affects us--white is better, black is not. I disagree because there are Filipinos who are really beautiful even if they are not fair-skinned, like Ma. Venus Raj, Bb. Pilipinas-Universe 2010. In addition to that, she also lived in poverty in Bicol.



Media and Entertainment in the Philippines are the ones showing Filipino actors and actresses, who, majority are half-mixed and fair-skinned. Because of that, Filipinos' mindset now is "white is beautiful" because it is what Philippine entertainment are showing. But we couldn't blame them if they misinterpret what real beauty is.

Now the question is... Are we guilty or are we not guilty? Think about it.

Images got from:
  • http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_iqC_0wtLUSU/Sb40Shh51II/AAAAAAAAAFs/53ScGQ1aZ5E/s400/tsinoy.jpg
  • http://nuttyloves.files.wordpress.com/2008/06/ulzzang-1.jpg
  • http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc3/hs509.snc3/26738_116097095071703_116096771738402_286190_5319700_n.jpg
  • http://img.youtube.com/vi/gCpn_M7e5Y0/0.jpg
  • http://img.youtube.com/vi/EWQD1jHO7Hg/0.jpg
  • http://www.listown.com/images/group/201004/Maria-Venus-Raj-20100409065838.jpg

Monday, June 7, 2010

Welcome to the 90's!

I bet many of my peers have received a text message saying...
Kung kabilang ka sa huling taon ng
Dekada '80 at unang taon ng mga '90,

Kilala mo sila shaider, bioman, at
masked rider black.

Kumakain ka ng humpy dumpy at tomi.

Naglaro ka ng 10-20 at langit lupa.

Alam mo ang universal song na
"uwian na!"

Nagsayaw ka ng macarena, boombastic,
at tamagochi.

Alam mo ang ibig sabihin ng "time first!"
(usually pronounced as "taympers!")

Alam mo na importante ang "Period. No erase!"

Nilalagyan mo ng pritos ring bawat daliri mo.

Meron kang pencil case na madaming pindutan.

Kilala mo si Remy, Cedie, Princess Sarah, at
Blue Blink.
It has been a decade since I was born in this world, and I feel like reminiscing those good ol' days where there's no pressure at school, free from problems in life, being able to explore the world out of curiosity, play all day long with your playmates, watch cartoons in the morning, in the afternoon, and in the night, and still be cute no matter how you really look like.


(This was me like 9 years ago. ^o^)


Upon receiving this text message from my dear friend, I was actually smiling like an idiot because I do relate with all these things.

I'm a 90's kid because I was born in that era, and I would say that my childhood days are the most precious part of my life, which I really cherish the most. The first chapters of my life has taught me all the wonders of the world--Utopia as my young mind portrayed it despite of the many flaws and dangers that lurks everywhere. It was the time when I discovered many things on my own. I felt really free. Free from pressure, responsibilities, duties, problems, and even from technology (which, unfortunately, has enslaved the children of this era).

Growing up, I've experienced those things as mentioned above, and I was happy that it became part of my life. I won't forget the time when I met my childhood friends in the neighborhood, and played with them for so many years.

I always feel excited and happy as my brother and I would go out in the morning to play with our friends like running in the streets without the danger of being hit by a car, and sometimes we cycle around the village or just simply chat with each other, talking about toys, imaginary friends, and not-so-realistic stories, while eating a 1 peso-worth chichirya such as boogeyman, snaku, kirei, peewee, oishi, humpy dumpy, tomi, sweet corn, chiz curls, and pritos ring (in which we fondly insert in our fingers. LOL!) I think some of those chichirya's are already phased out.


(Woooooh! Classic!!!)

In school, we are always fond of bringing Pretzels as baon. Hello Panda and Yan-Yan, which we usually greed to our classmates. Champola or Stick-o, which we use as cigarettes, and pretend to be smokers. LOL! Hansel sandwich, in which we remove the filling, roll it until it becomes a ball, and eat it last. Piknik, which we eat piece by piece so that it won't consume easily. And the my all-time favorite, the round biscuit with icing on top in different colors (I forgot how it's called, but somehow it resembles a lit candle), in which I remove the icing, gather it all, and eat it last.


(These were my favorites even up to now)

And remember chewing Bazooka and Texas gum? As well as the Tattoo bubble gum where many kids have put the tattoos in their entire body? Or even eating those mikmik milk powder? How about those mini colorful candies that have free toys or even play money at the end? Have you tried the tira-tira candy before (which resembles a stick of wood)? And how about the whistling candy and the sparkling candy? LOL! I miss those times being so obsessed with candies. It was crazy!



I never miss going out in a sunny afternoon to play "tumbang preso," "touching or touch ball," "agaw base," "ice water," "langit lupa," "taguan," "los banos" and also "mataya-taya." And of course, who would forget the all-time favorite game, the "teks" (or text), which evolved from "pogs." I remember having those filled my lunch box (I've got plenty of 'em!). Printed in those teks are different images of anime, and as you play it, there must be a pamangolo and pamato (I miss those days!). And I also remember the most general term used while playing any of those games mentioned--"Time First!" (Taympers as pronounced by many). Those are really fun to play and are authentic Pinoy street games which you rarely see nowadays because of the invention of computer games, PSP, internet, iPod, cell phone, etc.




And, who would forget those classic anime's in the 90's? Even up to now, my friends and I still talk about how engrossed we were watching those anime series during those times. I could still clearly remember the FIRST and EVER anime that I've watched--Sailormoon, Slam Dunk, and Dragon Ball Z, which was aired in ABC 5 and IBC 13. Even their opening songs are tagalized, which I find really hilarious!







Speaking of tagalized opening songs, I can still clearly remember the lyrics of Blue Blink, which goes like this:

"Ako si Blink,
sa bawat oras nariyan,
tutulong sa nangangailangan,
ako ay maaasahan..."
(nostalgic, isn't it?)

Funny isn't it that some things are still stuck in our heads because we kept on seeing or hearing it. Blue Blink was one of my favorites before, I don't know why (I think it's because I was trying to figure out what kind of animal Blink is. LOL!). And I believe I didn't fail watching every episode of it as I always sing along with its opening song. LOL!



And do you remember these lines?

"Kami'y narito, asahan niyo magtatanggol.
Makikipaglaban para sa kapayapaan.
(electric guitar plays)
Ang lahat ng nilalang dito ay may karapatan
(sa magandang bukas!)..."
(Guess which anime OP song is it)

RIGHT! It's Magic Knight Rayearth! I love that anime as well. Hikaru (Lucy)... Umi (Marina)... and Fuu (Animoni). And my favorite character was Umi because she's color blue! LOL! I must say, It was one of the must watch anime during those times, especially most suitable for kids. I remember having drawn them way back, and it was really ugly! (EPIC FAIL!) And I think I did have a VCD of it in English before (of course it was a pirated one!). LOL!



Remember Ghost Fighter??? Like it was one of the best anime I've seen!!! Eugene... Alfred... Dennis... and Vincent. I was always glued to our television every dusk just to watch it. I must say it was one of the favorites of many kids during those days. I even had Ghost Fighter shirts and those teks. When we were kids, my friends and I were always portraying the role of each character, and I play Dennis because he is smart (^o^). I actually screamed "Latigong Rosas!" before, which is kind of insane thinking about it! LOL! And I'd say Taguro is a freakin' beast! LOL!



I also couldn't forget Doraemon. It was like an all-time fave of mine because it gives me hope for every stuffs that Doraemon gets from his pocket. Sometimes, I even imagine myself having Doraemon as my roommate! When we were kids, my friends and I were imitating every character in Doraemon because it suits us all. I would be Dekisugi because I'm (ehem!) smart; my brother would be Nobita becase he was, somehow, clumsy (before); my big fella plays the role of Damulag; our friend, who's a girl, plays Shizuka; and our "sort of" conceited friend would be Suneo. It fitted us, right? LOL!



And of course, who would forget morning cartoons like, Heidi, Cedie ang munting Prinsipe, Sarah ang munting Prinsesa, Remi, Georgie, Judy Abbott, Tom Sawyer, Julio at Julia, Cinderella (long story version), Dragon Tales, Toothbrush family, Alice in Wonderland, Sunny Pig, Takoyaki Mantouman, Snow White (long story version), Charlotte, UFO Baby, Cardcaptor Sakura, WHEW! And night cartoons like Flame of Recca, Lupin the 3rd, Sorcerer Hunter, Pokemon, Mosquiton, Hell Teacher Nube, Monster Rancher, Fushigi Yuugi, Digimon, Hunter X Hunter, Time Quest, Super Boink... what else? (^o^)

Actually anime before is what I consider classic (kumbaga kailangan mo talagang abangan sa tv), because some are hard to find now. Not in the internet, and definitely not in DVD stores. Unlike anime today, you could just visit animeseason.com or youtube, and there you have it. You can watch it instantly and anytime you like.

(SIGH!) I really miss my childhood days, and if I only have given a time machine, I would definitely visit the past where I felt really free. Being a kid was one of the most unforgettable chapters of my life because if you'll compare this era to 90's, life is definitely much simpler.

Ang tanda ko na eh, no? LOL! (^o^)V

Images got from:
  • http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_JBVgjjbd0t8/TAyIrq4Cr_I/AAAAAAAAADs/mq3K8Pt32cU/s1600/tumblr_l0yk2qASo31qbzblho1_400.jpg

  • http://www.wangsoriental.com/chocolate%20yan%20yan.jpg

  • http://www.asianfoodgrocer.com/img/prods/chocolate-snacks/10770-meiji-hello-panda-choco-lg.jpg

  • http://dgt1.net/manny/mblog/images/bazooka_joe_the_movie.jpg

  • http://blographics.files.wordpress.com/2008/03/tumbang-preso.jpg

  • http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_r2WzGeRo9Jw/So_C3VF_iII/AAAAAAAAD6Y/XN5vhck06tU/s400/taguan.jpg

  • http://i41.tinypic.com/23mat0z.jpg

  • http://i200.photobucket.com/albums/aa87/sicnarf16/SlamDunk.jpg

  • http://mystuffspace.com/graphic/dragonball-z-anime-0.jpg

  • http://www.retrogame-shop.com/shop/images/Blue_Blink.jpg

  • http://www.lupinencyclopedia.com/avrc/images/series/castMKR.jpg

  • http://cyber-snatcher29.blog.friendster.com/files/ghost-fighter.jpg

  • http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_DfKKEv4_ITw/Rw-Coo5SCBI/AAAAAAAAAiE/8UYoqf1e7O8/s400/x7004.jpg