Preparing for (and Dealing With) Natural Disasters: The Geek Way

As much as I’d like to start this post on a positive note, the strongest storm system on the planet this year is currently Falcon Punching the heck out of my country and I find it hard to be upbeat. Which is why I’m writing a doomsday manual. For geeks. Because we need to survive: so we can rise from the ashes and rule the post-apocalyptic world as masters of the human race.

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Virtual or IRL: Why Online Friendships Matter (And Are Mostly Better)

Remember the Internet in the early 90s, when the sound of dial-up haunted your dreams? For those who don’t remember what dial-up is and why the Internet was a fucked-up place to be at that time, consider yourselves lucky. You didn’t have to wait for hours, unable to use the phone, while your sister chats someone up online. You didn’t have to worry if the Nigerian prince you’re talking to is a fraud or if the little girl sending you pictures is actually a middle-aged FBI agent. You didn’t have to face the dreaded “a/s/l” question every time you go online. You didn’t have to….*breaks down*

I don’t think anyone in my age group would argue that the Internet was a scary place back then and people you met online were not to be trusted. It was no place for an impressionable teenager, and you can’t possibly foment lasting relationships through it.

But a lot has changed in the last two decades.

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FLASHBACK FRIDAY: My First Filipino Short Story

A few hundred years ago, when I was still in college, a Filipino professor asked us to write a short story–something partly based on the truth, but embellished with a lot of fiction (like most news reports nowadays). This is the short story I submitted.

I apologize to my readers who don’t speak/read Filipino. I also apologize to Filipinos who don’t speak/read really deep Filipino. This is a course requirement, after all. It had to be as scholarly as possible.

So on we go.

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It Gets Better: Why Suicide or Self-Harm Isn’t Your Only Option

I am from the Philippines, one of the most conservative countries in Asia and maybe even the world. We’re still a long way away from legalization of gay marriage–heck, we can’t even implement a law that is designed to help women. It is no surprise then that things like depression and suicide and self-harm are topics that are considered taboo. But we have to talk about these things, because we have a lot more to lose if we don’t.

Let’s go straight to the point then.

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Living Through History: Why Our Generation is the Luckiest By Far

So I saw Lincoln today.

If you’ve watched the movie, you’ll know that it isn’t the usual sweeping biopic that tries to distill the entire life of the president in under two hours. The movie instead focused on the days leading up to the voting of the House of Representatives on the Thirteenth Amendment, which would abolish slavery and involuntary servitude in the US, except as punishment for a crime.

The movie had no action scenes or whatever, but it still conveyed a sense of emotion that only Spielberg–helped along with the awesome Daniel Day Lewis–could pull off. And the Thirteenth Amendment is no small thing either–it pushed for human rights in an age where human rights was but a distant and lofty idea. I teared up during the movie, no lie.

Anyway, after the movie, while people were filing out of the cinema, I heard a girl say to her friend, “OMG that was so great! I really felt like I’m part of history. I wish I’d lived through historic moments like that too!

I literally stopped in my tracks.

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Word Vomit: A Writer’s Take on Why People Have Blogs

“A blog is not writing. It’s graffiti with punctuation.”

Though the movie Contagion might have been a snooze-fest for most people (my dad fell asleep midway), it did drop this gem of a quote and managed to offend bloggers everywhere. This line was said to Jude Law who played a blogger whose blog had about twelve million unique hits. If he’s just a mere graffiti artist, how about smaller blogs that only have a couple of dozen hits a day?

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The Most Annoying Things in the World

You. You annoy me.

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s introduce this list. This is to commemorate all of the little things that annoy you everyday. We’re all familiar with the bigger things that can annoy us, but do we really stop and try to identify what small things can drive us so high up the wall that we leave footprints on the ceiling? Well, here’s my attempt to do just that.

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