Kumuha ka ng Superproxy

A Non-review Review of Mervin Malonzo’s Sawa Ka Na Ba?

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Kung sakali mang hindi n’yo pa nababasa ito, ay ‘wag nang magatubili. Basahin n’yo na ang “Sawa Ka Na Ba?” ni Mervin Malonzo na matutunghayan sa website ng Haliya Publishing. Kung tinatamad ka o sawa ka na ring mag-type sa Google para mag-search, maari lamang na i-click ang text na ito. ‘Yan, maaari mo nang basahin Continue reading “Kumuha ka ng Superproxy”

Se7en (Not the David Fincher Movie)

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This, is definitely NOT about that movie that ends with Brad Pitt killing someone (Wrath, was it?) after he found out what’s inside the box. But what is a box? Sorry, PNBMD reference. I know you recognized that hunk above is Brad Pitt and it’s from a scene in that crappy movie called Fight Club. Continue reading “Se7en (Not the David Fincher Movie)”

And Then

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Let’s make this a quick one. Jolene here, wanted me to try this exercise. And so, I gave it a try. Can’t think of any poem so I went with Lang Leav’s And Then because Pavement has a song with the same title. I also remember that one joke in that stoner movie Dude, Where’s My Car? around the time Ashton Kutcher and Sean William Scott “Stiffler” were probably the “coolest” dudes around. Continue reading “And Then”

Thank you, Tony Stark

You were young and so in love
But your ex-boyfriend married another girl
‘Cause you were dusted in the snap
Now, do you say, “Thank you, Tony Stark?”

You used to have a high-paying job
But you were dusted in the snap
Now you’re back and you’re jobless
Now, do you say, “Thank you, Tony Stark?”

Not to mention, your colleagues are all managers now.

You have a family
Three kids, a beautiful wife
But they’re five years older now.
And your ex-wife married another man.

One of your kids committed suicide, another is in jail
And your youngest got into drugs.
You could say that you just suck as a Dad.
But you wouldn’t be so miserable
Had you remained dusted due to the snap.

And worse, the Avengers brought you back
Now, tell me, do you still say, “Thank you, Tony Stark?”

You were just a kid when you lost your mom and dad
And it’s because those supes in Wakanda
Failed to plan their counterattack
You said you’d avenge them, so you became Kick-Ass

But with no superpower, superheroing just sucks
Now your parents are back
But their baby boy’s gone
In fact, Kick-Ass was gone, dead, hit by a truck

Now, you can’t possibly still say “Thank you, Tony Stark.”


This isn’t really about Tony Stark but Marvel’s creative decision to make that five-year jump after the “snap” which brought up a lot of questions which Avengers: Endgame did not or failed to address. Of course, Marvel seems to have everything planned and they seem to have reasons behind the five-year jump. It’s just that at the moment, I’m not fully convinced that everything is A-OK after the Hulk made that second snap. And these are some of the worse case scenarios. I might still add a few verses later. And feel free to add your own verse/s below. 

Bukowski.

Go to Saudi Arabia. 
Ride a camel’s toe. 
Don’t bring a bible. 
Dye your hair yellow. 
Grow a beard and don’t pick the soap. 
Circle the globe with black felt tip marker. 
Subscribe to Skinemax HD. 
Bore a hole on your left molar. 
Don’t marry. Shave with a straight razor or Gillette. 
And carve your name on a tree. 

Brush your teeth with kerosene; it’s cheaper than gasoline. 
Sleep all day and climb electric posts at night. 
Be a monk and brew and drink beer. 
Hold your feet in the air and your head on the ground. 
Do a “Careless Whisper” with luminous balls in your hands. 
Kill and eat your neighbor’s dog (then invite him for a drink). 
Shoot the senator. 
Live in a barrel of beer. 
Break your head with this fuckin’ country’s history. 
Plant (tu)lips in her 

But don’t, don’t engineer. 

Ten Books, Asterix, Regina Spektor, and The History of the World, Part 1

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So this is the cover Manuel L. Quezon III was talking about.

Coming up with a list of my favorite books, within a few minutes and without thinking too hard, isn’t really as easy as, say, whipping up my top ten punk/rock records while making peanut butter sandwich or coughing out my top ten superhero movies while reading a white paper on vibration analysis. Which is to say, I haven’t read that much to warrant a top ten list. If you read the list below, keep in mind that there are only a few titles that I left out.

Even though I like the idea of reading books, I’m not really much of a reader. It’s like, you know, like being in love with the idea of being in love with someone, without really loving that someone. Books, like girls, you can smell them up close, only a book would smell paper, instead of cologne or shampoo. Continue reading “Ten Books, Asterix, Regina Spektor, and The History of the World, Part 1”

Tabi Po (Graphic Novel)

Rebyu ng rebyu ng Tabi Po ni Mervin Malonzo

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(Warning: NSFW) Unang una, na-disappoint ako nung malaman na yung nabasa ko sa web ay sya ring matutunghayan ko sa print version ng libro (hard copy, ika nga, at hindi e-file). Kung mababasa ko sya ng libre, ba’t ko pa binili ‘tong libro? Pero tama si Mervin Malonzo, masarap amuy-amuyin ang makulay na papel ng bawat pahina nito. (Ginawa ko ‘to kanina sa bus (yung pag-amoy), pero minabuti ko na mag-ingat. Nakakahiya kasi na makita ng ibang pasahero na inaamoy ko itong libro habang nakabukas dun sa pahina na may mga nakahubad na larawan.) Pero tama s’ya, mabango, amoy papel at makulay ang aklat na ito.

Pero sa totoo lang, mahilig naman talaga ako mangolekta ng mga bagay na tangible, tulad ng libro, CD, DVD, at hard drive na punung-puno ng mga bagay na nagtatapos sa .mkv, .mp3, at .pdf.

Continue reading “Tabi Po (Graphic Novel)”

Independence Day is Dry Day

12.jpgA personal note on celebrating Independence Day, what it means to us, and drinking beer on holidays.

15 Aug 2016. We have just celebrated our 118 years of independence last June; our lasting friendship with Uncle Sam last July 4th. Yesterday, I saw a lot of people, friends on social media raising our collective middle finger to Lim-A-Hong and his adventures in the West Philippine Sea/South China Sea. While some people took the news as enough reason to go out on the streets and celebrate, I couldn’t bring myself up to join them in their online ranting; as if keeping myself on the sidelines saying “we’re just pissing in the wind”. And despite the decision clearly going to our favor, I see it this way: the jury finally announced that you actually won the grand prize, but the other guy already took it, ate it, slept with it, some five years ago.

Still, I hope the new government have a clear plan on what to do next. And I hope it’s not some cop-out B-movie plan I grow up watching on TV because in reality, no plot armor could save us. I’m not expecting us to take back what was ours; neither I expect us to get into something we clearly aren’t prepared for and capable of. War should be the last thing on our list. (Or maybe it shouldn’t be there at all.)

But this is about the 12th of June, as it is about the 15th of August, the celebration of Indian Independence from the British Empire. This I learned about, only this morning, when I saw my colleagues from India, all dressed up, like there was something really special. I was just planning to greet them casually, like “Hey, Happy Independence Day!” but one offered a hand and so I end up greeting them one by one and shake hands with each one of them. Not that I have anything against shaking hands, I just thought that it would be too formal. Then I ask them, how many years of independence and someone answered 70 years. And from them I saw that it’s something really important. That today isn’t just another holiday back home. That they appreciated my simple gesture—I felt it when I shook their hands. And it surprised me. Because we never really took June 12th seriously. We never get together to celebrate it back home nor when we’re away from home. We only see it as a holiday. Which is probably why I’m not entirely sold on the idea of many people clamoring for change online. I see it more like a knee-jerk reaction, more like out of anger or frustrations with all the shit that’s happening everyday and with the previous administration.

But let’s go back to my well-dressed friends. After I greeted them I asked, “Is Independence Day also a Dry Day?” they said yes and everyone burst into laughter.

Dry Days are specific days when the sale of alcohol is not permitted. Most of the Indian states observe these days on major national festivals or occasions.

CinepleXX

sinehan

Sunud-sunod na putok ng baril ang umalingawngaw. Sagutan ng putok. Habulan at barilan sa gubat. May mga humahabol kay Ben-Hur. Gumanti sya ng putok. Tumingin sa camera, nakangiwi ng bahagya. Sa harap naman ay may lumang sofa na bahagyang tumatabing sa ibabang bahagi ng telon. Medyo malabo din ang pelikulang nakasalang, at tila baligtad ang mga imaheng lumalabas dito. Sa harap ng telon, sa ibabaw ng sofa, umahon ang imahe ng isang babae.

Ganito ko naalala ang isang eksena sa isang pelikula ni Erik Matti. Isa lang sa mga tagpo sa mga pelikula nya na pag napanood mo, mahirap nang makalimutan. Merong din syang pelikula kung saan yung eksena naganap naman sa loob isang aparador. Pero balik tayo dun sa nauna. Sa pelikulang iyon, napaisip ako kung meron ba talagang mga iskwater na ginagawang bahay ang likod ng telon sa loob ng sinehan.  Nasa pelikula eh, kaya malamang, nangyayari din sa tunay na buhay. Pwede rin na pinapaupahan ng management ng sinehan. Pero teka, ano nga bang klase ng sinehan ang tinutukoy ko? Meron pa bang mga tulad nito sa ngayon? Tingin ko meron pa, pero mangilan-ngilan na lang. Ito yung mga sinaunang sinehan. Wala sa loob ng mall at hindi rin nakakabit sa anumang establisemento. Ang sinehan, sinehan lang. Sa ganitong sinehan ako unang nakapanood ng sine, yung Magnum .357 ni FPJ. Sa probinsya meron din mga ganito, tulad nung sinehan sa isang pelikula ni Brilliante Mendoza na naipalabas sa Cannes. May napanooran pa nga ako dati nung bata pa ako, sinehan na wala pang aircon. Blower at air freshener lang. Pero mas gusto ko ang yari ng mga sinehan noon. Yung tipong makakapanood ka nang maayos kahit hindi ka nakaupo sa last row. Hindi naman siguro lahat ganun, pero tingin ko iyon ang standard noon. May balcony at may orchestra. Medyo mahal ng konti sa balcony. Pero mas kita mo naman nang buong-buo ang pelikula.

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Sa probinsya namin, nung nasa college na ako, may isang sinehan na malaki, state-of-the-art ika nga. Fully air-conditioned na, digital surround sound pa. Ito na siguro ang pinakamagandang sinehang napasok ko. Ang kaibahan nya sa mga bagong mall ngayon, hindi sya sinehan sa loob ng mall. Isa syang sinehan, na may iba’t iba pang klaseng tindahan sa loob. Sinehan ang main attraction. Pero may mga side bet din tulad ng bar, mga kainan at ilang mga boutique. Pero olats mamili dun, kasi madalas, mas mahal ang mga bilihin. At wala syang grocery at department store. Pero kung panonood ng sine ang pakay mo, dun ka dapat pumunta. Isa syang paraiso, sa mga mahihilig…sa pelikula. Tatlo ang sinehan sa loob. Sa isang linggo, lagi akong may tatlong pagpipilian. Kung lahat gusto kong panoorin, kailangan kung iplano nang mabuti ang schedule ng panonood. Tinitimbang din kung aling subject ang pwede kong libanan, at kung magkakaroon ba ng exam o hindi. Mahalaga ring i-consider ang oras ng palabas. At itanong sa sarili kung aabot ba ako last trip pauwi, pagkatapos ng pelikula.

Dati, hindi pa uso ang mga malls sa probinsya namin. May isang malaking shopping center, pero hindi sya tinatawag na mall. Kung tutuusin, maituturing mo na rin syang mall. Meron lahat – food court, supermarket, grocery, arcade – lahat ng basic features ng isang mall, meron din sya. Meron din itong sinehan. Dalawa. Pero di tulad ng mga sinehan sa mga malls ngayon, malaki din ang sinehan dito.

Ano nga bang nangyari sa mga sinehan ngayon? Bakit paliit nang paliit ang mga sinehan.  Dahil ba kahit marami lagi ang tao sa mga mall, ay kakaunti naman ang pumapasok sa sinehan? At di na ba kayang punuin ng manood kung ang sinehan mo ay may espasyo na kasing laki nung sa luma? Hindi na ba uso ang sinehan na parang nasa balcony ka? Kung maliit ang sinehan bakit kailangan pagkalaki-laki ng screen nito? Ang hirap tuloy manood.

Naalala ko nung minsan manood ako ng pelikula ni Lav Diaz sa isang high-end na mall. Dahil high-end ang mall at ito ay nasa isang high-end na lugar, umasa ako na maayos ang sinehan dito. Pero hindi, tulad din mga sinehan sa ibang mall na kapareho ng pangalan nito, hindi sulit ang panonood. Hindi ko alam yung ibang nanonood kung napapansin ba nila ito. Na sobrang laki ng screen pero hindi sapat ang layo ng upuan mo para makita mo ng lubos ang pelikula. Walang tamang anggulo at hindi kayang saklawin ng paningin mo ang kabuuan ng telon. May mga detalya na hindi mo mapapansin. Pamaya-maya kailangan mo rin i-scan ang buong tabing para makita ang lahat nang nangyayari sa loob nito.

Bilang isang taong may kaunting nalalaman sa desenyo, naisip ko tuloy iyong mga propesyonal na nag-dedesenyo ng mga buildings tulad ng mall. Pasok ba sa standard ang sukat ng sinehan sa mall na ito? Makakalabas ba agad ang mga tao kung sakaling magkaroon ng sunog? Una hindi ko alam kung meron ngang standard na sukat, pero malamang meron. Eh ano ngayon? Alin ba ang mas mahalaga, makatipid at kumita ng maayos ang mga malls o ang pagsunod sa standard?

Pero hindi naman talaga ito malaking problema. Manonood na lang ako sa bahay. Magsasalang ng DVD at magbubukas ng malamig na beer. Sarap.

xx3

(Taxi Driver screenshot taken from http://cinemajam.com; Serbis screenshot taken from https://www.cineplex.com.)