Jerome's incomprehensible but improving...
Friday, December 19, 2003
 
::OVERHEARD FROM SISTER'S PHONE CONVERSATION

About her gift-giving organization skills (she's very creative, good with gift-wrapping design and themes for gift giving)

A nice book she got, about how to live your life right. What got her attention -- "Teach in any capacity you can".

The success of the Christmas Party at Play Place (her Italian dress was a big hit!)

The virtues of the Leapfrog system (my niece's interactive books.) You can get cheap (if possibly slightly defective) add-ons at Pioneer for around P600, a veritable bargain.

About her friends.

About money -- she has qualms about spending for a lifestyle.
"So what do you do with your money?"
"Ayun, ginagastos"
(shudder)

What she likes in a house -- trees, but not in our lawn (she doesn't like roots)
About Ad Creatives classifying into A,B,C
Not just about money! You can be A in net worth but C in mindset
e.g. You enter a fine restaurant, and you think about bringing home the toothpick container.
Wednesday, December 17, 2003
 
::A DAY OF FAITH AND FRIENDS, AND SIMBANG GABI

I went to the Gesu chapel the next day. We were silent about the matter. It was great having time to meditate and feel peace.

I really look like I'm frowning all the time. And I can do it even when I am quite relaxed. It's really who I am. I should try not to do it when I'm thinking (implication is I think all the time) but should not be too conscious about it.

She said I forgot my book. Hmm.

* * *

Fritz invited me for Simbang Gabi at Ateneo at 8:30. Invited Eric, Amil, and Sach for Simbang Gabi. At Gesu again.

Had a lot of fun singing. Silent Night among other songs. There was a little in-joke between me and Eric about the word "kernel".

We were talking about Carol of the Bells on the way to CTC (accompany Fritz to fetch her laptop) and then Sampung Dipang Tao (and a very sorry, toilet-humour derived sound-alike. All in good-though-not-so-bathroom-clean fun.)

We had a nice long talk at Starbucks. And then it was a taxi and commute back for me.

Very relaxing and quite a spiritual day with friends.
 
::MET UP WITH PAUL! AND NOT TOO WELL AFTERWARDS

[BACKLOG 2003/12/15]

Paul's back here in the Philippines for a while. He's doing pretty well in Stanford. He told us about their interesting teachers (the T3 guy, and the good Math teacher). We ate at Seiji. Then we had ice cream at Mrs. Fields. We had a geeking out moment with my Lateral Logic Puzzles book. We ended with the counterfeit money problem.

* * *

I tried my best to say what was on my mind. With Eric it worked. Being blatantly honest seemed to be a good thing, and I was very sincere. I tried to bring out the negativity out in the open.

I guess it doesn't work when you don't know when you're being rather hurtful.

It's true that sometimes things have to be done. Like what my sister and Mark talked about re F4 tickets. Though on the other hand, there is a way of talking to people, and you just have to be constantly guided that what you do is primarily for helping others grow. Negative topics you really have to watch out for.

It's true that we are sometimes lost and need guidance. I had a reflection that the discussion on what's not simply logical, but what is common sense, what is intuitive, what does not bother one's scruples, is really a yearning for something of the spirit.

* * *

THE CAT? A SYMBOL

There was an affair with a Cat. Yes the Cat I thought was part of my reflection, though if you think about it it's just a Cat. No, we are people, and while we should embody the Cat's simplicity, as we should be like children as Jesus said, that's only part of it. We have the burden of choices, and have to be responsible. Yet at the same time we should be like the Cat, and reflect that even a simple thing is endowed by God to have tranquil moments, and He loves us much more, and we should accept his gifts and his compassion and love which he shows us in so many ways.
 
::AN ACTION-FILLED I.T.-SUFFUSED SUNDAY AND ABOUT GIFTS

Today was pretty interesting. I met with my dad's cousin Jun, and we had a great talk about his IT plans to bring in new technology in the animal care business. His needs (SQL Server 2000, ASP.NET) are right up mine and Mark's alley. He was also talking about data transmission through GSM and GPS apps, topics which coincidentally Mark and I were talking about earlier that day. Will be meeting with Tito next weekend.

Just before I met my Tito at Starbucks, we saw Kaufman there! Introduced them to my mom and Mark.

I helped out my sister make pompoms for Tinsel's Christmas party this Friday. She's Miss Italy. I am considering taking leave so I can attend my niece's affair. :-)

Finally picked my gifts for everyone in BP. Hope they like the designs. It's a bit feminine in concept, but utilitarian. Anyway it's the thought that counts.

Everybody says "it's the thought that counts!" Of course when you give a gift, that's backed up by a thought! The gift points to fact thay you decided to get that gift. The only sense where this really applies then is when you really tried to buy a gift and that you couldn't get the gift, and this being case, the intention has more value.

Ok that was being quite technical about it. Something like Anoa Mindorensis and Pithecopaga Jefferyi.
 
::THE CHRISTMAS PARTY!

[BACKLOG 2003/12/13]

I took a cab to the office at 2PM. Traffic was really bad on E. Rodriguez. Arrive at 3PM. We had a short practice on our F4 moves. We took the shuttle to Riverside Mall where The Studio our venue was. Was a dreary gray afternoon, and had inane discussions such as why Ryan couldn't find Smokey Mountain albums anymore, about jaywalking and why BF didn't put up gender-unbiased urinals. We also talked about OLEDs and crossover guest characters in Marvel comics (e.g. Blade helping out kill a vampire enemy; Spiderman meets X-Men) and that was pretty interesting.

People were not in the best of moods at The Studio. Bryan had a quip about my comment about the Golden Gate decor looking McSaver's-like. Paramount was late, and the slides and 7Ups video were a rehash. Organization could have been better. We won P1,000 each though. Could have been a more effective event.

I invited Eric and Sacha to the party. They were in the most fortunate of coincidences having a Compsat party at Boiler, just a block away also in Riverside. It was raining but I got to use the Trend Micro umbrella they gave this year. I got to introduce them to BP, and Kaufman, and Bernie.

The Christmas party had spectacular numbers from HR, AV and PSS. We did our F4 bit, we were delayed though due to problems with the CD. It was short but fun, we got a few congratulatory remarks, and it was "for the love of BP." Hehe.

I saw Chris Lagman who is now also part of Trend! He's a manager in the new TSS group.

I won Altec Lansing speakers. Not great but pretty good raffle prize.

We went home when the band went on at around 1PM. We took the shuttle back, and it was pretty quick, surprising compared to the lengthy trip going to Riverbanks. Eric, Ranulf and I had coffee at Seattle's Best, talking about suggestions for the gaming contest, occasional comments about Anino again, Eric's teaching classes and some geek stuff such as Sword of the Samurai and the Star Wars Kid.
 
::IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, RAMP-UP TO TREND XMAS PARTY, AND IN BETWEEN

[BACKLOG 2003/12/8-12/12]

Work-related activities for the week were working on bug fixes for the Intranet. I managed to work on all P3 bugs, though some were not fixed when QA finished Friday. Also read Use Case Modeling (not yet finished), finished reading the Enterprise Architecture Patterns book. Microsoft has an interesting Patterns site, just right for our .NET programming needs.

Maui, Nine and I went to hear Immaculate Conception mass at the Eastwood chapel at lunch. Met Dominique, he also called me up to invite me down for mass though I was already there. Met him again at McDo and let me his V.I.P. card. Also met Alisther.

Lunch conversation insights: when ___ is around, conversations would inevitably go to politics, or green jokes.

We managed to come up with a last-minute Mr. Trend presentation for Mike, revolving around F4. It was a good show, and me, Ranulf, and Ryan rose up to the challenge.

The "Alt-F4" members:
- Dao ming su (-gat)
- Bangess Ku
- Ca ma tsi lei
- Xi-men (it's in the pronounciation)

We had an all-hands meeting with Jeremy. Highlight was that Eric Nacional outlined the NOC monitoring infrastructure, and I got the insight to standardize the use of Windows Event Logging for our error notification process.

Was able to give for Kris Kringle (something "B.P.") We went to the new National Bookstore. I think that would turn out to be mightily convenient for me.

Was helping out LJ and Mark during the evenings on deliberating on ImagineCup. It's a bit disappointing to know that our discussions didn't manage to survive in the present plans. But at least we got to think out several possibilities, and were able to discard less than suitable ideas.

I had a long talk with Eric on Friday. Really helped me think about things I find important, how to be honest, and proving the value of friends.

 
::A CHINESE WEDDING WITH LOLO

It was a very interesting experience. My dad dropped me and Lolo off at San Sebastian. We weren't really sure about the schedule, and not knowing any relative did not make matters better.

We then commuted to Cubao, and took a cab to the restaurant along Morato.

The bride and groom were a bit reserved, but they were happy and enjoying the festivities and company of relatives and friends. My lolo particularly knew a cousin of the bride, who helped us get a nice table. Helped us quite to feel part of the celebration.

The place was all red. The hosts talked in English and in Chinese, and there were a lot of songs in both languages. The food was great. Notably, there as no rice, but we got to sample a lot of dishes.

My lolo told me more stories again on the way home. Some I already know, some were kind of new. A reflection again on how much faith in God my lolo has.

I LOVE JESUS, JESUS LOVES ME.

Reflection too on how much more I should appreciate my lolo.

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