Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Virgin Charlie Challenge Week #12 Recap- From One Goal to the Next


After 12 weeks, and after various alterations of this fitness challenge, I finally got an achievement. Para lang game sa Facebook no? Hehehe…

It started when my kumare bought me an Abercrombie shirt. Kala niya kasya sakin. Large size na nga daw yun. Eh hello? Ang L size ng Abercrombie does not refer to flabby rounded fat-ass walking-lard large size. 



I tried it on for the first time and I looked something like this-

www.sanpablocity.com.ph


Oo, mukha akong suman when I tried it on. And then I told her, don’t worry, I’m starting the Abercrombie Sign Challenge and after this fitness challenge I’ll be able to wear it.

And now, kasya na!!!! Woooohoooo! 

Next goal- photoshoot with upcoming artist, photographer and dear friend of mine- Xian Gallardo. Yes, HALF-NAKED!!!! Bwehehehe!

(Coming soon: I’ll be featuring Xian Gallardo and friends, a group of Pinoy photographers in Italy)

Virgin Charlie Challenge Week #11 Recap- Music to Get You Going



I go to gym not because I want to but because it is a necessity. As I’ve said before, my family has a background of heart-related diseases, including being in love obsessively and having the total absence of love towards any other living organism.

To have good looks is, and I would like to point this out clearly, purely secondary. And I’m actually vain and a chronic liar.

But what I really want to say is that going to gym is not something pleasurable for me, and lifting all things made of iron is a drab and plain boring. I need something that is mentally stimulating.

Music, the perfect remedy to keep you going and to motivate you to lose more dumbbells and some dumb people around you.

Here’s my playlist-

  1. The Prodigy- man I love listening to Prodigy’s while working out! “Breathe” and “Smack My Bitch Up” are forever favorites.
  2. Fatboy Slim’s “Push the Tempo” when I’m getting a bit tired lifting weights and when I’m on the treadmill.
  3. Also another Fatboy Slim’s music, “Right Here, Right Now”. I listen to this when I go jogging out in the open.
  4. Tomoyasu Hotei’s “Battle Without Honour or Humanity”, yes it’s the catchy music in the Kill Bill movies. When I listen to this it’s like “Beat the body without humanity and love the pain.” Hahaha!
  5. Alternative rock songs.

Any rock song would do for me actually. But never a Barbara Streisand song.


I have nothing against Barbara, it’s just that one time they played Streisand’s “Enough is Enough”, and I heard it, the moment felt so gay and I lost concentration. I was laughing hard! I’m not laughing at the gay thing. I was laughing because there I was trying harder to push through beyond the limits of my routine and then the song says ‘enough is enough’.
And this gym was supposed to be a sanctuary for rockers and rock music fanatics. Barbara Streisand! I’ve got no more to say further on this one.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Ten Down!


A-   Auster, Paul- Oracle Night
B-    Barnes, Julian- Sense of an Ending
C-    Cornwell, Patricia- Post Mortem
D-   Dennis, Patrick- Auntie Mame
E-    Eugenides, Jeffrey- The Middlesex
F-    Follett, Ken- The Pillars of the Earth
G-   Grisham, John- The Runaway Jury
H-   Huxley, Aldous- Brave New World
I-     Isherwood, Christopher- A Single Man
J-     Jin, Ha- In the Pond
K-   Kelman, Stephen- Pigeon English
L-    Lewis, C.S.- The Screwtape Letters
M- Murakami, Haruki- South of the Border, West of the Sun
N-   Nin, Anais- Henry and June
O-   Okakura, Kakuzo- The Book of Tea
P-    Patchett, Ann- Bel Canto
Q-   Quinn, Jay- The Beloved Son
R-   Rounding, Virginia- Catherine the Great: Love, Sex, and Power
S-    Simoni, Marcello- Il Mercante dei Libri Maledetti
T-   Tolkien, J.R.R.- The Hobbit
U-   Updike, John- The Centaur
V-   Vonnegut, Kurt- The Cat’s Cradle
W- Waugh, Evelyn- The Brideshead Revisited
X-   Xiaolong, Qiu- Death of a Red Heroine
Y-   Yates, Alexander- Moondogs
Z- Zola, Emile- The Belly of Paris


Currently Reading: Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Judas and the Unrepentant Magdalene


I admit that I have allowed hatred and bitterness creep into my heart ever since that Judas and his Unrepentant Magdalene was banned from our little temple.

It is true, when love comes, it will try to thrive in the hearts of two lovers even if it means moving the heavens, the earth, and the depths of hell. And that’s exactly what happened.

They were good and faithful followers of the Way. All of us were disciples, serving in the Kingdom of the Almighty.

Judas was charismatic. He’s not strikingly handsome. Perhaps it’s his personality that makes him attractive. He possesses great attributes and skills. He was sometimes reproached mildly because of some acts of immaturity but was humble enough to accept and acknowledge his faults. The whole brethren and the other disciples believed that he can be a good man, a leader with great potentials in the future.

Magdalene was a fair young lady blessed with exceptional, princess-like beauty. Nobody could deny that. When she dances, her gracious slender body sways with the tender whisper of heaven, that men fall for her beauty and angels hail glory to God above for creating such lovely lady.

I believed that God has a wonderful grand plan for both of them. Unfortunately, old Satan took up the role of cupid and frustrated everything.

Later, the two disciples fell in love with each other. Love is a wonderful thing but it’s terrible especially when two people had the right love at the wrong time. It’s a catastrophe.

Others would think that it’s wrong and unfair that other people, like us, should interfere in the lives of others. True. But then, the principles to which we adhere are quite different from the principles and priorities on which your brave new world is founded.

The age-gap between the two of them is so wide. Magdalene was waaaaay too young for someone like Judas, who, on the other hand was waaaay too old for her. But it’s love, you know. Kanya kanya talagang trip yan. I mean, I myself have a different taste. I’m usually attracted to somebody older, powerful or influential, and yes, I’ll say it shamelessly, RICH! Hahahaha!

Anyway, we confronted them, gave them the right advice. If they were ‘common’ folks, we could’ve just tolerated the situation, but since they have a certain status in a community in which they are required to be responsible with their actions and be good role models to the youth and others, we had to interfere.

It was never our intention to separate the two of them. In fact, we approved it, well, at least in my opinion. I told my peers that we should not hinder two people who are in love with each other but we have to advise Judas and Magdalene that it was not the right time for them to jump into such relationship. The young lady was actually a minor at the time

They kept a low profile for a certain period of time. But then things went out of hand, and unfortunately, what we feared happened.

Pre-marital sex is not acceptable. People of this brave new world would think of us as savages, but this is one of the many issues our community believes in- that purity must be kept until marriage. If anybody can’t handle that, then they must leave. One must respect the principles and beliefs of a religious body, and if he can’t, then he is free to leave and choose for himself a belief that fits into his opinion. After all, the brave new world is a free world- where immorality is a virtue and harlotry is a trend.

They were excommunicated. Instead of straightening their ways and be reconciled again to the brethren, they went on exile.

Looking back, Judas and Magdalene did nothing but make up stories to cover their big lie, piling up stories, one lie after another. We were accused of hypocrisy and slander.

The other disciples knew what was happening before the truth burst out, but they were silent at the time, inadvertently condoning Judas’ treachery and Magdalene’s acts of harlotry.

I was loyal to them and had faith in Magdalene and Judas. In return, they turned their backs to us and categorized us as hypocrites and sanctimonious.

But you know what, whatever they said in the past and what they did, they were already forgiven by our leaders and our spiritual father and mother. If they would come back to God and say sorry, the gates of the temple would be open again for them and they will be received with much joy and love. The spiritual head is more than eager to make a new beginning.



It was and it still is hard for me to forgive and forget. I treated them as friends, like members of my own family, and lately, I heard their opinions about us never changed. For them, we’re the still old hypocrites.

But then, who cares? Excommunication was the best thing we gave them. At least they’re now free to love each other and do whatever they think is right. They never truly cared about following the path of the Almighty. It only pisses me off that God would be so gracious to them while people like me are trying hard to do what is good. Doesn’t he think I deserve something better? But then, He is just. He knows what He’s doing.

The fact is true religion and faith is not all about good works. If one can love and forgive, then he is a true believer.

And with that, I do realized that I am truly a hypocrite- one who prays loudly and publicly but can’t even be gracious enough to forgive the errors of others.

Anyway, I don’t miss Judas or his mistress, the Unrepentant Magdalene. I brought this issue up because few months ago I saw Magdalene’s posts in Facebook. Accusatory remarks. Hay nako! I should be putting it behind now. I believe they are extremely happy now wherever they are. I should be happy that they are not in a miserable situation.

Virgin Charlie Challenge Week #10 Recap- Beauty and Agony




Kung dati 5-day attendance ako sa gym, tapos naging 3 times a week na lang. I made a promise na ibabalik ko yung dating intensity sa pag-workout.

Ang magpapawis, magbuhat ng lahat ng bakal, tumakbo, kumilos nang kumilos, at banatin ang lahat ng parte ng katawan- sa tingin mo, sino ba talaga ang gaganahan ng ganyan?

I made a promise two weeks ago. Ayoko lang mag settle sa Insanity Workout Program ko (by the way, I’m already in my second week and going really steady). Part of me (that sado-masochistic me) wants to push through by going to the gym and doing Insanity DAILY. And there’s a part of me (the more prevalent and the slob) wants me to just settle for less, what is sufficient and adequate, and refuse any form of self-deprivation in terms of carbs and sweets and junk food.

Argh! It is true- No beauty is achieved without agony.  


http://qzma.deviantart.com

Virgin Charlie Challenge Week #9 Recap- An Act of Insanity a Day Keeps the Doctor Away


Weight: 78!!!! Yeah!

I remember the day, in that precise moment when the world seemed so normal, too normal to be real, I saw a friend’s Facebook status about Insanity Workout Program. I knew there’s something crazy going on with her.

I think a year has already passed until I saw a video about this workout program and realized that this workout program was meant for me.

And now I am officially INSANE. Actually my friends think that it is the end of the world. For them it’s unthinkable that someone like me would do exercises and lift weights. Guess what, it’s been more than two months that I go to gym and I’m looking healthier and sexier than ever!

iwanttogetripped.com


But pumping iron and doing other stuff, and taichi aren’t enough for me. I wanted something really challenging. And so, the Insanity Workout Program.

This workout program is a series of cardio exercises which you can do in the convenience of your home and, according to others, it is guaranteed to help you burn fat. Of course, it’s not a magic formula to have those god-like abs and ripped chest or whatsoever, but it will enhance the strength and potentials of the body and, yes, help you burn a lot of fat.

The program is simply insane. Watching the video, it looks easy, but once you start doing those exercises, my goodness!

Why do I like it? Because I’m conditioning myself to develop an intense aversion towards body fat. Because I like doing a challenge like this. And obviously, because, as other normal-kuno people say, I am insane.

Anyway, it’s a two-month program so I hope that I’ll make it to the end and see considerable results.

Ciao everyone!

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Eight Down!


A-   Auster, Paul- Oracle Night
B-    Barnes, Julian- Sense of an Ending
C-    Cornwell, Patricia- Post Mortem
D-   Dennis, Patrick- Auntie Mame
E-    Eugenides, Jeffrey- The Middlesex
F-    Follett, Ken- The Pillars of the Earth
G-   Grisham, John- The Last Juror
H-   Huxley, Aldous- Brave New World
I-     Isherwood, Christopher- A Single Man
J-     Jin, Ha- In the Pond
K-   Kelman, Stephen- Pigeon English
L-    Lewis, C.S.- The Screwtape Letters
M- Murakami, Haruki- South of the Border, West of the Sun
N-   Nin, Anais- Henry and June
O-   Okakura, Kakuzo- The Book of Tea
P-    Patchett, Ann- Bel Canto
Q-   Quinn, Jay- The Beloved Son
R-   Rounding, Virginia- Catherine the Great: Love, Sex, and Power
S-    Simoni, Marcello- Il Mercante dei Libri Maledetti
T-   Tolkien, J.R.R.- The Hobbit
U-   Updike, John- The Centaur
V-   Vonnegut, Kurt- The Cat’s Cradle
W- Waugh, Evelyn- The Brideshead Revisited
X-   Xiaolong, Qiu- Death of a Red Heroine
Y-   Yates, Alexander- Moondogs
Z- Zola, Emile- The Belly of Paris




Currently Reading: Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

Virgin Charlie Challenge Week #8 Recap- Plateau Effect


Weight: 80 kg…. Hopeless na ba? Hindi na talaga mababawasan ito?

More than two weeks na ang nakalipas, this is a late update. Whatever.

Sa pag-workout may tinatawag silang “plateau effect”.

Ano ang hinayupak na salitang ito?

Well, ayon sa mga kilala kong miyembro ng muscle squadrons (people who have no other topics to bring up in a conversation except how to get those venerated abs and enlarging biceps) nasasanay daw ang katawan natin sa isang work-out routine. Kapag nangyari ito, the body will stop developing muscles and stop burning body fats dahil familiar na sa kanya ang routine. This is what we call “plateau effect phenomenon”.

Sample lang kung ano ang ibig sabihin ko....


Para maiwasan daw ito, mahalaga na every two weeks nagpapalit ng workout routines.

Blah blah blah blah blah blah! Bad trip!

Lately kasi, hindi ako nakakapunta sa gym because of many cosmological hindrances, my loathsome job, and many other silly reasons. At oo, NAKAKAPAGOD! Hahaha! Masisisraan ako ng bait. Hindi lang plato ang epekto eh! Sira sa ulo!

Pero sige, promise! Magsisipag na ulit ako sa gym! 

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Bunga-bunga: Catherine’s Style vs. Berlusconi’s Style (And yes, this is a book review)



Virginia Rounding’s book “Catherine the Great: Love, Sex, and Power” gives us a paparazzi-like insider-look in the life of one of the greatest women in history- Catherine the Great, Empress of all Russias.



I say paparazzi-like because of the rich details, insights, and information that the author wrote in her book. Rounding really did an impressive and intensive research and the result is simply an amazing biography. She's like a paparazzi who obsessively captured every interesting detail about Catherine II.

All those times I was reading the book, I can’t help myself from doing comparisons between Catherine and our disgraced premier Silvio Berlusconi.

Before the Empress became Catherine, she was Princess Sophia from a small principality. She is smart, adequately beautiful and she had a clear understanding of her destiny as the wife of the future Emperor of Russia, Grand Duke Peter III, when she was called to pay a visit to the Imperial Russian court of Empress Elizabeth. Russia’s future was then set to greatness.

On the other hand, Silvio Berlusconi had a clear sense of political ambition and devilish perverted vision of his future the moment he lied for the first time in his life. The decay of Italy started.

Catherine, after getting rid of her retarded and useless (politically, emotionally, and sexually speaking) husband, assumed the imperial throne. She is a very energetic and determined woman. Her heart was set to do the common good for her people. She is very intelligent and a fast learner. I think she was born a genuine political animal. When she came to her position as the new ruler of Russia the senators and nobles around her were plain stupid, illiterate, and inept to govern a vast empire. She taught imperial leaders how to manage the empire and taught legislators how to make laws to develop the people and their great nation.

Berlusconi, after getting rid of left-wing leader Romano Prodi and vilifying a very promising leader Walter Veltroni, assumed the post of prime minister (for the nth time). He has no real knowledge of the Italian Constitution or laws but he’s very shrewd and devious. His heart was set to do good things for his companies (and the mafia). He is born not only as a genuine politician but also a real animal. When he came to his position, there were intelligent legislators and the members of the Executive Council are very capable leaders. He taught them all kinds of perversion- sexual perversion, the perversion of justice and the perversion of laws. Now, they’ve become stupid. They are forced not to use good will and their good brains. The nation is in constant degradation and shame.

And here’s the real reason why I’m comparing the Empress to that Little Megalomaniac Pervert- the accounts of their sexual lives and sexual appetites. Which bunga-bunga is better? Russian bunga-bunga or Italian bunga-bunga?

(For those who don’t know what I mean, “bunga-bunga” is a modern popular term here in Italy which means “orgy/sex party with a powerful politician”. The term is particularly related Silvio Berlusconi due to the notorious parties he hold in his villa in Arcore.)

Here’s the most interesting of all facts that I’ve read in Virginia Rounding’s book- Catherine, the great leader, the great empress, the smart political animal, is also a very passionate lover. A horny woman in a less promiscuous and good way. She doesn’t delve into orgies. But she does have a conga-line of lovers- Stanislaw August Poinatowski, the valorous general Grigory Orlov, the political technocrat Gregory Potemkin (the most influential and helpful lover of Catherine), Ivan Rimsky-Korsakov, Alexander Dmietriev-Mamonov, Alexander Lanskoy, Ivan Shuvalov, and Platon Zubov.

Many of Catherine II’s lovers were smart and intelligent. Almost everyone were promoted to important positions in the Empire. In return, they have proved to be men of great strength and political prowess and were advantageous for Catherines reign. Others refused to receive wealth and greater power but served the Empress faithfully. Some were opportunist but were somehow helpful to keep Catherine from going insane with all the difficult work of running an empire. 

Even though her collection of lovers gave her a questionable reputation, her Russian version of bunga-bunga never hindered her from bringing her Empire to such great heights of fame and glory in Europe. One can easily understand such behaviour. She’s human and she’s a woman!

But the same won’t be said to our Little Megalomaniac Pervert Silvio Berlusconi. He is a womanizer, a horny little being, in a very badass and promiscuous way. He delves into a lot of orgies in his villa organized by fellow public servants and influential men in the media. His minions invite the most beautiful and the horniest dim-witted blondes and brunettes of the land and nearby countries. Among these bitches is the infamous Ruby, the Heartbreaker.

As the people toil tremendously and honestly to earn money for a living, Berlusconi’s bitches amass wealth, and get promotions. Some were able to gain positions in government and Parliament even though they have more mass in their boobs than inside their skulls.

Berlusconi’s lovers are just good as bitches in bed- nothing more, nothing less. They are so good in bed that they actually drain the little man’s energies. He was actually caught sleeping during sessions in Parliament. 

OK! Enough of this comparison! I’m just too overwhelmed, that’s all. Really sorry.

Anyway, Rounding’s book is really a very interesting book especially if you like divas like Catherine II, and a history lover. As I said, it is evident that Rounding did some Herculean effort in writing her book because of the intimate information she got from journals and letters of Catherine and friends. Most of all, it’s worth reading because Catherine II’s life is very inspiring, a true role model of a modern woman, a leader with a heart, a passionate lover, a woman who is in charge and on the go. And as for the writer, Virginia Rounding is simply brilliant and meticulous.