Watch Me Entertain Myself!

Sacha Guitry once said, "You can pretend to be serious, but you can't pretend to be witty." Oh yes, I'm the great pretender.
(pilot episode: 20 January 2004)

Friday, August 31, 2007

Playful Pics

If a picture paints a thousand words… oh, I’ll just shut up.

* * * * *

Playing with myself and my phone.

* * * * *

Playing with the new iMac’s built-in camera and Photo Booth application. So this is what my disembodied head (that’s perfectly symmetrical) would look like. Afraid!

* * * * *

In Sta. Lucia East, I saw this lechon (roasted pig) stand. Chalk this up to the Pinoy’s ingenuity of coming up with interesting names.

* * * * *

This is from a videoke bar’s song list. I suspect “Libyan On A Jet Plane” is a song for terrorists and hijackers.


This is one of my all-time favorite quotes:

“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.”

– Robert A. Heinlein

Honestly, Now

While I must insist that I am not in an emo mood at all, I recently discovered this little gem of a song that, on the surface, is almost too easy to call cheesy. But one day I just played my Best of Olivia Newton-John playlist at random and this song came on. Luckily I was in a listening kind of mood. Although I’ve heard this song a hundred times before, it was only then that it dawned on me the impact of the lyrics.

* * * * *

Maybe I hang around here
A little more than I should,
We both know I got somewhere else to go.
But I got something to tell you
That I never thought I would,
But I believe you really ought to know—
I love you,
I honestly love you.

With a gentle piano intro, the song starts off rather innocently. The way ONJ sings it in a gentle, sweet and almost apologetic manner, it sounds like just one of those “Let-me-say-I-love-you” songs.

You don’t have to answer,
I see it in your eyes;
Maybe it was better left unsaid.
This is pure and simple,
And you should realize
That it’s coming from my heart and not my head.
I love you,
I honestly love you.

I particularly like the “it’s coming from my heart and not my head” line. And who doesn’t know the awkwardness of wanting to tell someone your feelings yet fearing that it’s best left unsaid? It’s that tentativeness that can be infuriatingly addicting to those who love falling in love.

I’m not trying to make you feel uncomfortable.
I’m not trying to make you anything at all.
But this feeling doesn’t come along everyday,
And you shouldn’t blow the chance
When you’ve got the chance to say:
I love you,
I honestly love you.

By the song’s bridge, the singer goes for the gold. There, it’s out.

But then, whoa!

If we both were born
In another place and time,
This moment might be ending in a kiss.
But there you are with yours,
And here I am with mine,
So I guess we’ll just be leaving it at this.
I love you.
I honestly love you.
I honestly love you.

Suddenly the listeners are thrown in for a loop. “There you are with yours… here I am with mine”?! Ladies and gentlemen, we have now entered Corporate Closet territory, ahahaha! (Sorry CC, luv yah!) It turns out, the two are committed to other people. But unlike CC, the singer just contents herself with blurting out her feelings and leaving them at that.

In a Hollywood movie things won’t be left at that.

In real life, how many can have the discipline and the drama-queen mindset to do an ONJ? Can McVie do an ONJ?

(Maybe not “I Honestly Love You”-ONJ. Maybe more like “Xanadu”-ONJ.)

* * * * *

For those who want to hear it, here’s Olivia Newton-John’s “I Honestly Love You”:

My Other New Crush

Our office got the new iMac. OMG, I am officially in love all over again! The new iMac is L! O! V! E!

And check out the new keyboard. It’s so theeeeeen, like a panty-shield.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Wednesday Morning Radio

Notice how love and music sort of go together? Worse, notice how when one is either falling head-over-heels into love or falling out of it fast, almost all the songs on the radio conspire to remind you of what you’re going through?

Just this morning while switching stations I heard in immediate succession: [1] The Beatles with “We Can Work It Out”; [2] Boyzone’s remake of Tracy Chapman’s “Baby Can I Hold You”; and [3] Kylie Minogue’s booty-driving “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head”. (For those who are familiar with early morning Metro Manila FM radio, you can figure out my station-switching pattern: from RJ100 to RX93.1 to 99.5FM.)

“We can work it out, we can work it out.”

“Words don’t come easily
Like I love you, I love you.
But you can say, baby…
Baby can I hold you tonight?
Maybe if I told you the right words
At the right time, you’d be mine.”

“I just can’t get you out of my head.
Boy, your lovin’ is all I think about.
I just can’t get you out of my head.
Boy, it’s more than I dare to think about.
Every night, every day,
Just to be there in your arms—
Won’t you stay?
Won’t you then stay forever
And ever and ever and ever….”

* * * * *

Okay. All together now, one, two, three: Can you all say, “Mush!”?

Is Someone trying to tell me something? All I hear is radio gaga, radio goo-goo, radio blah-blah….

Monday, August 27, 2007

Dance With Me?

They say it takes two to tango, three to tangle. Paging Corporate Closet, ahahaha!

Okay, okay, I digress. Take two.

They say it takes two to tango. But for the longest time I can’t seem to find a right dance partner for me. Every time I get dragged onto the dance floor by what turns out to be an inappropriate dance partner, I just end up getting my feet—and heart—trampled over. No wonder I enjoy dancing solo on the ledge, away from it all.

So now I’m wondering: maybe it is not so much finding the One, your perfect dance partner. Maybe everyone’s a worthy dance partner in his or her own right; it’s just that some will jive better with you more than others. To the former you stay with them longer; to the latter, you politely go through the proper steps before twirling gracefully away.

Maybe life is just one big ballroom and everyone gets to try out different partners from time to time. Some are lucky to find a partner whom they want to stick it out with them to the end. Others get bored with just one partner. Still others end up going from one dancer to the next, always looking and never stopping.

Meanwhile I’m still here dancing solo and saying to myself, “Hey, this isn’t so bad. At least the music is kick-ass.”

Safe Distance

I am amazed and in awe at folks who continue to take chances on love. Having a crush is easy, and falling in love is almost second nature to most people. But to risk one’s heart for a chance to experience full-scale l’amour?

I’ve known rejection all my life; say “hi” to Rejection, my Familiar. From the time my parents favored my older brother because he was the better student—academically and more—to when I’d fall for my male classmates who wouldn’t even so much as glance my way, I always felt I was not good enough, good-looking enough, smart enough, sporty enough, enough is enough, I’ve had it, no more tears. But instead of snapping out of feeling sorry for myself, I instead went on an escape route. Stay away. Keep a safe distance.

And for a while it worked. Heck, what am I saying? For the longest time it has been my comfort zone. No man is an island? I have a fucking continent all to myself. Just family members and some friends populate that continent. Once in a while there are transient visitors. But so far the local populace has taken none of them in.

But am I happy? Sometimes I really wonder. It’s very difficult to feel happy when the whole world is conspiring against you: people left and right are hooking up, romance remains a perennial staple in popular media and entertainment, and even the internet is littered with one message: You. Have. To. Be. With. Someone. Or. Else. You. Are. Incomplete.

I agree that having someone with your though thick and thin is a treasure not all people are fortunate to experience. But where does it say that it has to be a partner? And does it have to be just one? Can the different functions of a “soul mate” (I use that phrase for lack of a better term) be spread out over several people—say, friends and family? And what about those people who are “unfortunate” enough to not meet their “soul mate”? Are they “lesser” persons then?

The world is getting smaller. And this continent cannot just rely on tourists forever. I wonder how the first immigrants will be like?

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Plus Tumor OBBs

Okay, two more from someone who I think grew a brain tumor two nights ago and is now tossing out OBBs for The Dan & Rye Show left and right.

This is the classical version 2.

And this is the sexy version! Maloka kayo dito.

Three New OBBs

Saturday chilling out at home and I decided to make more OBB versions for The Dan & Rye Show. I compiled a few tunes I wanted to play around with, plus got more upsounds from TD&RS.

The result? I came up with three. Listen and tell me what you think.

This is the classical version.

This is the nu wave version.

And this is the rock version.

What’s your favorite OBB?

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

McHK, Pt. 1

I’m writing this with a weird feeling I can’t quite put my finger on. Aside from sleepy, thanks to just 4+ hours of sleep (Wednesday coding will be the death of me), I am walking around the office in a daze. I think I left a piece of my heart back in Hong Kong.

* * * * *
(at the harbor)

We arrived Sunday morning. After a group lunch, everyone proceeded to go on their separate agendas—a big contingent went to Disneyland, while the others went shopping in small groups. I ended up watching the last episode of the Korean soap “Lovers In Paris” in my room then followed a group of shoppers. I ended my first day in HK just window-shopping and accompanying Leigh to the night market and back.

The next morning we had a group tour of the city. By lunch I excused myself from the group because I was scheduled to meet Dan at the entrance of Disneyland between 1:30 to 2pm. I arrived 1:50pm. Good thing Dan’s rehearsals finished late too.
(with Dan at the entrance of Disneyland)

On the train going to Disney, I kept playing in my mind a surreal version of my first meeting with Dan and Rye. But that was immediately erased by the reality of seeing Dan waving from afar then coming over to give me a hug (pawis daw ang kamay—shake hands lang?)

Because Dan still had rehearsals, he just pointed me to the worthwhile attractions. I was on my own until 5pm. I watched “Lion King,” and—for me, the best non-live show currently showing there—the 3D spectacular “Philharmagic”. I even got to watch the latter twice! During the second showing, my phone rang. Rye was already in Disney.
(fire spectacle at the “Lion King” show)

Outside the crowd was still thick but it was so easy to spot Rye, thanks to his chocolate-colored, beach-burned skin. He accompanied me to watch “The Golden Mickeys”. Afterwards we met up with Dan and we all trooped to their place in Tung Chung.

And the next several hours were the best ones for me during this HK trip.

* * * * *

I kept joking Dan & Rye that the reason why I went to HK was to do a podcast with them. Actually it is partially true. This trip was not part of my plans so I wasn’t able to save up money for the trip. Besides, I was never a shopping person to begin with. So my priority for this trip was to see THE Dan & Rye live and in person.
(proof that Rye is a master chef)

Rye whipped up a great dinner of fried chicken (perfectly crispy on the outside, juicy and tender inside—laban ka, ChickenJoy?!) and beef stroganoff. The latter’s sauce was not as creamy as Rye wanted it to be, but it still tasted wonderful and the beef was tender. Even the Thai rice was perfectly piping hot. Nothing in this world can compare to a home-cooked meal.

With red wine flowing, we had dinner while podcasting. Chris “pabili ng yelo, ‘te!” joined us after a while. He’s the cute chinito guy in the picture here. One of the reasons why I enjoy listening to TD&RS is that it’s like eavesdropping on a really hilarious and thoroughly entertaining conversation. And the chemistry of the two is really palpable. Add Chris into the mix and you have a riot. Unfortunately Chris was subdued that night because of my presence. Naku Chris, na-tongue-tied ka pa! Na-miss ko tuloy yung bigay-todong halakhak mo.

We ended up talking for more than 100 minutes and finishing a bottle and a half of red wine. Chris fell asleep on the couch. They offered to let me sleep over since there were no more trains available. I got some throw pillows and took the rug. (In fairness to them they offered me a space on Rye’s bed but I declined.)

* * * * *

The next day was Dan’s day-off. Rye, Chris and I left him in la-la-land. When the train reached Sunny Bay I hugged Rye and Chris goodbye and thanked them once again for a wonderful time.

As the train hurtled away from the station, I felt a twinge of sadness.

They are wonderful, funny and courageous guys doing pretty well in a country that has given them better opportunities for their wonderful skills and talents. And with their third contract, they are proving to themselves and to HK that they have what it takes to succeed. They are plucky and gutsy, yet they also remain down-to-earth and generous. I am very happy for them and wish them all the best.

No wonder I felt a little sad. They are people really worth knowing well.

(Disney a few hours before closing)

* * * * *

To Dan and Rye, thank you for having me over at your place. It was one of the best nights I’ve had in months (including bathhouse nights). The dinner, the podcast, the off-mike chikahan, the wine and jello shots made for a terrific stay in HK. Kahit sa labas ng Disney, performance level pa rin kayo. Panalo!

To Chris, o ayan, sa susunod puwede ka nang mas madaldal. It was great to finally have met you. At in fairness, hindi ka pala payat—dapat ang tawag sa iyo ay svelte.

To Mamu, helloooooooo!

O di ba? Ibang level ng EB ito!

* * * * *

I owe someone big time.

Rabbi called me while I was on my way to watch Mickey’s Waterworks Parade when he called, telling me that he was performing at the 4:15pm show of “The Golden Mickeys”. And while at first I agreed to watch that, I realized that it might conflict with plans later on if I watch “Lion King” in the evening instead of at 4:30pm. Torn between improvising and sticking to plans, I decided to play safe.

So I’m very sorry I missed your performance, Rabbi. But I’m willing to bet the next time I go to HK I will be watching you in a show that doesn’t require you to share the stage with a huge mouse that talks in high-pitched Mandarin.

Back From HK

Our whole department is back from our 3-day-2-night company outing to Hong Kong. We landed in Manila at 10:15 last night. Today it’s a regular working day. This morning people will not be working on anything except uploading pictures in their Facebooks, Multiplys, Friendsters, and other such sites. So excuse us first while we all attend to more important matters.

McVie’s HK diaries, especially the behind-the-podcast story of The Dan & Rye podcast episode, will be up next.

Saturday, August 18, 2007


He first contacted me through G4M. His profile said single and 26 years old. He was cute, Chinese and in Cambodia, but he had YM and a webcam. He found me attractive; he was into older Filipino men. I went gaga over his singkit eyes, kissable lips and a skinny Chinese body type that I like.

I was surprised by how fast things went. It started with both of us flirting. We had webcam sex twice. He revealed he had a Filipino boyfriend who was living in Cambodia; it didn’t bother me at first. Then the chat became more affectionate. Pretty soon we were moving from “like” to “love” and saying “mahal” and “irog ko”. He even cried when he thought I didn’t understand the extent of his feelings for me. I was just probing what he meant when he said that his feelings for me were “like for a boyfriend, only with no label”. All of this happened in a span of a week.

Despite his real status, I wanted him. I was ready to help him look for a job here. I was even already thinking of looking for jobs in Cambodia online.

He told me he was coming over here for a visit. He promised he’d go with me on a weekend getaway to Tagaytay or Baguio. But when he hemmed and hawed later on, I sulked. In turn he moped. My self-preservation kicked in and I pulled back.

It’s difficult to maintain a long-distance relationship. But to be a long-distance mistress is more than difficult. It’s idiotic.

So now when he comes over for a visit we’ll just have a friendly fuck and a KISS—Keep It Simple, Stupid.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


In the website of the upcoming fantasy film The Golden Compass starring Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig (who also costar in another film, The Invasion), one can find out one’s daemon. What is a daemon? It is a person’s soul lives outside of their body, in the form of an animal spirit that accompanies them through life. A child’s daemon changes shape as he changes and grows up, but as a person ages, his daemon settles into one form.


Anyway, there’s a test to find out what your daemon is. Mine is this:

Her name’s Meida, and she’s an ocelot. She matches my “modest, spontaneous, inquisitive, fickle and assertive” profile. And yes, my daemon’s a she, as human and daemon pairs are typically the opposite sex.

While I have no problem with the cat, I do have a problem with the name. “Meida” sounds like a domestic helper. (Not that there’s anything wrong with the profession, but really now.)

My Latest Ringtone

My friends are sooo not going to like being with me when I receive a call on my cellphone, mwhahaha! (evil laftir)

Monday, August 13, 2007

Back To Regular Programming

Tama na ang emo. Sobra na ang senti. Itigil na yan!

* * * * *

Remember ITALY? I trust and love you. Or JAPAN? Just always pray at night. This weekend while going through some old stuff I came across an old computer printout (How old? Dot-matrix pa ang printer!) of some acronyms that some fellow TA members created. I wanted to credit the authors, but this was so long ago so I don’t remember now who they were. Anyway, here they are.

GERMANY – Girls enjoy rabid men averaging ninety years.
CHINA – Constant hard-ons induce narcissistic actions.
SPAIN – Sex plus aggression is nice.
YUGOSLAVIA – Young unused girls offer sexy, lusty and venereal instant amusement.
CZECHOSLOVAKIA – Closed zippers excite cunt holes of sexy lasses offering virginal and kinky instant amusement.

I know you can’t resist adding your own, so go ahead.

Re Verses

While we’re on the subject of love and quoting verses, let me just share with you the following poem. This is one of the rare poems in Filipino that I really like. My theater guru and good friend Ricky A. read it during his birthday celebration last Saturday. Too bad I wasn’t able to record his heartfelt reading of the poem—that would have been podcast material.


Mangyari lamang ay tumayo ang mga nagmamahal
Nang makita ng lahat ang mukha ng pag-ibig
Ipamalas ang tamis ng malalim na pagkakaunawaan
Sa mga malabo ang paningin.

Mangyari lamang na tumayo rin ang mga nagmahal at nasawi
Nang makita ng lahat ang mga sugat ng isang bayani
Ipadama ang pait ng kabiguan
Habang ipinagbubunyi ang walang katulad
Na kagitingan ng isang nagtaya.

Mangyari lamang ay tumayo ang mga nangangambang magmahal
Nang makita ng lahat ang kilos ng isang bata
Ipamalas ang katapatan ng damdamin na pilit ikinukubli
Ng pusong lumaki sa mga engkanto’t diwata.

Mangyari lamang na tumayo ang nagmahal, minahal at iniwan
Ngunit handa pa ring magmahal
Nang makita ng lahat ang yaman ng karanasan
Ipamalas ang katotohanang nasaksihan
Nang maging makahulugan ang mga paghahagulhol sa dilim.

At sa mga nanatiling nakaupo
Mangyari lamang ay dahan-dahang tumalilis
Palabas sa nakangangang pinto
Umuwi na kayo!
At sumbatan ang mga magulang
Na nagpalaki ng isang halimaw.

At sa lahat ng mga nakaiwang nakatayo
Mangyari lamang na hagkan ang isa’t isa
At yakapin ang mga sugatan
Mabuhay tayong lahat
Na nagsisikap makabalik sa ating pinagmulan
Manatiling masaya at higit sa lahat
Magpatuloy sa pagmamahal.

by Rico Abelardo

* * * * *

Arekupo! O sha, sha, uuwi na ako! (Choz.)

McSong For The Moment

One morning while driving to work I was switching stations on the radio and stumbled upon an old song that I used to hear a lot back in the 70s. It’s by Don McLean, he of the “American Pie” fame. “If We Try” was not as huge a hit as the drove my Chevy to the levy ditty, but it resonated with me more. And after recent events, the song became more haunting to me nowadays.

When I see you on the street,
I lose my concentration.
Just the thought that we might meet
creates anticipation.

Won’t you look my way once before you go
and my eyes will say what you ought to know.
Well I’ve been thinkin’ about you day and night...
and I don’t know if it’ll work out right...
but somehow I think that it just might...
if we try.

The song starts as a paean to longing, hoping and wishful thinking. The simplicity of the words match the simplicity of the feelings they evoke.

Faces come and faces go in circular rotation.
But something yearns within to grow
beyond infatuation.

Won’t you look my way once before you go
and my eyes will say what you ought to know.
Well you’ve got me standin’ deaf and blind...
cause I see love as just a state of mind...
and who knows what it is that we might find...
if we try.

The author asks for the simplest things: that they meet and perhaps she notices him. How very childish and innocent, right? But then comes the bridge, and along with a shift in tempo is also a curious shift in the lyrics.

You’re walking a different direction from most people I’ve met.
You’re givin’ me signs of affection I don’t usually get.
I don’t want you to pledge your future;
the future’s not yours to give.
Just stand there a little longer
and let me watch while you live.

“I don’t want you to pledge your future, the future’s not yours to give” is a sentiment that’s more mature than most; the usual line would be usually be like, “please let me be your future!” or something similar. But then the next line, “Just stand there a little longer and let me watch while you live” shifts back to a sweet sentiment that’s endearing in its naïveté.

The song then ends with the author repeating his hope, that despite the possibility of failure, “somehow I think that it just might if we try”.

After 21-yr old I thought I’d take a break from heart matters. But then suddenly _____ came along and now when I see him on YM, I lose my concentration. Where will it lead with _____? Who knows. All I know is, my mantra these days is simple: non-exclusive, elusive. Let me try and see if _____ is worth staying around for.

For those too young to know the song, here’s “If We Try” by Don McLean:

Saturday, August 11, 2007


Department of Fixers A-plenty: that was how I viewed the DFA (actually Foreign Affairs) for the longest time. And for the longest time I had no opportunity to change my view—the first time I had to get a passport was in 1995 and back then a travel agent can get it for you. So I had no need to personally go to the DFA.

I lost my passport between 1996 and 2000; back then I did not have plans of going abroad so I didn’t bother getting a new one. But two weeks ago our boss told us to get our passports ready—the whole office was going to Hong Kong!

To renew my lost invalid passport I had to apply in person at the DFA in Pasay City. This Monday I got my birth certificate from the National Statistics Office. Tuesday I spent almost the entire day getting my passport photos taken and preparing the necessary supporting documents. I scheduled my trip to DFA the following morning.

I woke up Wednesday at 4:30am to thunderous rainfall. Typhoon Chedeng had dragged monsoon rains and was hitting Metro Manila at full blast. For a moment I thought of postponing my trip to Thursday. But part of me thought: with this weather, maybe only a few people will go to DFA.

Braving flooded areas of EDSA, I reached DFA at 6:40am. By 7:00 I was already in line (I wasted time going back to the car to get the passport photos I left there). They let us in a little earlier and by 7:30 the windows were open and the processing started.

It was thankfully very efficient. Everything was done as fast but as efficient as they could. And there were signs everywhere telling you what to do every step of the way—at the front of the lines, on the windows, everywhere. And the processing was fast. Window A just made sure that the documents were in order; people stayed there for less than 10 seconds before moving to the next window. Window B double-checked the veracity of the documents; because they had to retrieve my lost passport’s data via computer, I stayed there for about a minute and a half. Window C was where I stayed the longest—that was where they asked me for proof of residency and other pertinent questions (“What is your father’s middle name?” and “Where was your mother born?”). Because everything was in order, I was told to proceed to the cashier to pay.

At the cashier I paid Php750 for the 2-day express processing and then looked around for the next step. There were no signs on the window. I turned back to the cashier and asked, “Excuse me, what’s next?” The cashier looked me in the eye and said, “You go home, sir.” Then he grinned at me.

Wow. That was it? By 8:15am I was done. I could even come in for work on time. The stormy weather had nothing to do with it; I overheard a DFA employee exclaim, “There’s a storm already yet there are still so many people in line?!”

As Leigh said, efficiency is the killer of corruption.

So if you are going to get a passport at the DFA (passport application starts at the huge DFA basketball court that’s converted to their processing area during the day), make sure that you deal only with real DFA employees. On the street outside the alley leading to the DFA are stalls of photocopier services, canteens, and ID photo shops. Men standing in front of them will approach you; IGNORE them. One of them said that I needed to get an application form first from their stall—not true! Application forms are available inside the DFA for free. Another guy said I needed to get a number first from stall 2—again, not true! Your application form will be stamped with a valid number only after standing in line inside the DFA. Once you’re in line with a valid number, everything afterwards proceeds like clockwork and can be done by you—no need for fixers.

* * * * *

While waiting in line I scanned the other poor souls who braved the weather to get their passports. Most looked like they were overseas Filipino workers on their way to try their luck abroad, either for the first time or for the nth time. One mother brought her crying baby with her. I was wearing a long-sleeved collarless shirt and jeans yet I felt over-dressed compared to the rest.

Then he came in.
He looked like a college boy. He was with an old man whom I assumed was his dad and another guy in a polo barong who looked like he was the old man’s employee. The old man instructed college boy to take his place in line while he and employee, who held the documents, sat on a bench at the side of the court.

Okay now. If I met college boy at a mall or in the Ateneo or in Makati I wouldn’t have given him a second glance. He’s tall and smooth-skinned and looked neat and fastidious, with very lovely, kissable lips, but that’s it. However, when placed in the midst of OFWs and moms with crying babies and a 41-yr old from the lower middle class who had not taken a bath yet at that time (since he rationalized that: [1] he was already running late and taking a quick shower would have serious repercussions on his timetable; [2] it was so cold he wouldn’t sweat and produce body odor; and [3] even if he did, he’ll be in and out of there for one time only and would never see the others for the rest of his life, so who cares if someone beside him thought he stank?), college boy by comparison looked like Mr. Dreamboat. I started assessing him from head to foot: neat blue cap to discreetly hide his Fil-Chinese mestizo features, Lacoste jacket, preppy t-shirt with plaid accents, heavy metal Tag watch, pin-stripped dress pants with matching dress socks, and immaculately white Pumas. Plus he was busy pounding the keys of his Nokia N-series phone the whole time. As my eyes wandered from head to foot, my mental cash register kept going Ka-ching! Ka-ching! Ka-ching! Mwhahahaha! My inner social climber wanted to grab both his hands, look into his eyes, and say: “I’m yours.”

It’s amazing what the power of contrast can do to boost a guy’s pogi points. Sigh. I should really start hanging out with the taong grasas for me to be noticed.

* * * * *

Dear Dan, Rye and Rabbi: I will definitely be in Hong Kong from Aug. 19 to 21. Sana you have shows I can watch in one day. Anyway, bahala na. Wheee! I’m excited.

P.S. – No, I’m not there to review all the bathhouses in H.K. Maybe just one. Or two. Charing!

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Making Of The TD&RS OBB

When Rye asked if I could do an OBB (a.k.a. “opening billboard”) for The Dan & Rye Show, I didn’t bother to ask if he was serious or just joking. I wanted to do an OBB for the funniest-duo-in-Philippine-podcasting-history-as-far-as-I-know.

Unfortunately I had already used the opening sequence of the dance remix of Fashionista for an OBB of my podcast; the shout-out “Everybody line up! The show is about to start!” would have been the perfect call-to-arms for TD&RS. So finding the music was of utmost importance. I wanted it energetic, to match the energy of the two hosts. I wanted it to be somewhat familiar too, so that the listeners have an immediate connection.

When I stumbled upon my old CD of dance hits of the 90s, I hit upon the infectious opening groove of Groove Is In The Heart by Deee-Lite. “We’re going to dance and have some fun!” was a perfect opening for Dan and Rye, who are both dancers. In the same CD was 2 Unlimited’s Get Ready For This; the title alone was perfect to connote an “Are you ready for Dan and Rye?” vibe.

Choosing the soundbites from 25 episodes of TD&RS season one was actually easier. I compiled almost 3 minutes worth of interesting snippets from several episodes—hindi ko na kinarir pakinggan lahat ng 25 episodes, noh!—before I started editing.

I never begin editing a project until I have a definite idea of how it will start; sometimes I also know how I it will end. But the middle is one big lemme-just-wing-it experiment. It’s this fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants attitude that makes producing an OBB or a whole podcast exciting; there’s the joy and thrill of making things work that is so fulfilling for me.

When I finished the OBB, I thought it was already short with a running time of 1 minute 18 seconds. But when I let a couple of my friends hear it, one said it was too long for an OBB. And to think that I had already tossed out so many other great soundbites just to keep the running time short! So I bit the bullet and chopped it off by almost half.

And so here McVie’s OBB for The Dan & Rye Show, Season Two:

But of course I kept the longer original mix. So now I call it my “Ode To The Dan & Rye Show”. I especially had a problem with deciding which to edit out: the “Ibulong mo!/”Hindi ko narinig” upsound; or the “Aaaachooo!” upsound. It was a Solomonic dilemma—it felt like I had to cut a baby in half. In the end I kept both in.

So now here’s 1 minute and 18 seconds of McVie’s “Ode To TD&RS”:

Monday, August 06, 2007

Life Goes On

So now I’ve been catching up with my life these past few days. Over the weekend I managed to watch two movies in one day (a one-two punch of The Simpsons Movie and Ratatouille), drive all the way to Laguna for a haircut, and finish the long-in-production opening billboard (a.k.a. OBB) for The Dan & Rye Show. Well, as I told Rye in my email, it’s not exactly an OBB for Season Two (I’m praying you two will have your contracts renewed!) but rather an ode to Season One. I will post that here when Season Two starts (take note Dan and Rye, “when” not “if”).

My conclusion? Love can really be a hindrance to this thing called Life. Hahaha!

I love being single, unexclusive and elusive. I doubt anyone can catch me. Stopping me in my tracks is easy; it would take someone extraordinary to make me stay voluntarily.

Zoom, zoom.*

(*Leigh, I know what you’re going to say, hehehe.)

Tonight On T.V.!

Pls. indulge me in a little cross-plugging for a friend.

* * * * * * *

I-Witness with Sandra Aguinaldo
This Monday: August 6, 2007

Carmi Martin, Manilyn Reynes, Jolina Magdangal…. Who would think that the names of these actresses would bear a totally different meaning for members of the gay community? Among them, Carmi stands for karma, Manilyn for being lustful or “malibog” and Jolina for someone already circumcised or “tuli na”.

In tonight’s I-Witness episode, Sandra Aguinaldo shows how “swardspeak” or gay lingo has infiltrated the day-to-day conversations of Filipinos. Even those who are not gay commonly use gay terms and phases.

Sandra brings together groups of gay beauticians and stand-up comedians to demonstrate how gays create their own language. According to the two groups, “swardspeak” is one way they express their freedom and fight discrimination in society.

The gay words “chika” and “tsugi” tied for 3rd prize in the 2004 Sawikaan Word of the Year competition, sponsored by the UP College of Arts and Letters. And several originally gay words are about to be included in the 2nd edition of the University of the Philippines’ Dictionary!

Find out which words made the cut in this fascinating and funny documentary on the evolution of language entitled “Chiswisang Baklush (Gay Talk!)”. Written and hosted by award-winning documentarist Sandra Aguinaldo, it airs Monday late night over GMA-7’s I-Witness.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Four Down, One To Go

I wanted to hug him but the guards were there in front of my car, looking at us.

* * * * *

It was time for me to tell him. Do not prolong the agony. So even though it was nearly 10pm, I dropped by his place.

I had to wait for 10 minutes in the car while he showered and changed, so I reclined my seat and napped. His gentle tapping on the passenger window woke me up. I unlocked the doors and he greeted me with a cheerful, “Uuuuy! He’s sleepy already.”

He was singing songs to me in the car. At a nearby restaurant he teased me, “You look hot.”

I told him I liked him but like was not enough. I told him I enjoyed his company but didn’t miss him when we were apart. I would text him because that was what I’m supposed to do, although lately at times that was what I wanted to do. A friend asked me: do I want to take it to the next level? Without hesitating I said no.

He had stopped singing and was looking down. When he raised his head up to talk to me, his eyes were shiny.

“Is it something to do with the fact that I asked you to lend me some money?” he asked. He couldn’t look me in the eye.

“No,” I answered, “but that helped crystallize what I’ve been pondering on for several days now.”

I tried to explain as much as I can. I didn’t do so well. I even said the “It’s not you, it’s me” line. Ewww.

* * * * *

For the first time I found out that he called me Mr. Vitara to his friends. Strangely that broke my heart.

* * * * *

He tried to be cheerful. He started singing songs again. “Weekend In New England.” “First of May.” “Someone That I Used To Love.” He’s got a jukebox in his head—just like me. And he’s got a wicked sense of humor—just like me. So why do I just “like” him and not “love” him?

* * * * *

Driving back to his place I wanted to hold his hand. He had retreated to his own world, listening to his iPod and singing silently to himself. As his building loomed nearer I pulled his hand into mine; he didn’t reciprocate nor resist.

* * * * *

I parked my car in front of his building. The guards were standing by the road and looked at us. He turned to me. “I want to hug you but the guards are there,” he said. “So good night na. Take care.” I wanted to say something but didn’t know what. “Good night na,” he repeated.

“Good night,” I said.

And he left.

* * * * *

Driving away, I started groping for my iPod in my car. I was seized by a nasty thought: I wonder how much he can sell my iPod in Greenhills? But then I found it.

I drove home to the tune of Erasure:
“I don’t wanna look
Like some kind of fool
I don’t wanna break
My heart over you
I’m building a wall
Everyday it’s getting higher
This time I won’t end up
Another victim of love.”

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

A Sunny Weekend

Last weekend Leigh invited me to join her family in celebrating her mom’s birthday. We took the scenic route, passing through Calamba and Los Baños in Laguna before veering right towards San Pablo. We stayed at Casa San Pablo, then visited Ugu Bigyan’s Potter’s Garden in Quezon, and had merienda and lunch at Kusina Salud in San Pablo. The last time we did this was a year ago when we went up to Baguio.

This was also an opportunity to be with my inaanak, Luc. He’s a great traveling kid: loves riding in cars, and gets excited at seeing new surroundings. He’s a little reserved with me; a slight case of autism plus not seeing his tito for months can do that. So I was happy when he made eye contact with me several times and actually interacted with me.

Usually in out-of-town trips I end up being the photographer, so you see lots of places and people and not much McVie. But since Leigh brought her camera along too, she was able to take potshots at me. It’s rare that I have so many photos of me, so indulge me please.

Here are the Viajistas, minus Leigh’s sister, who took the photo.

Puffing up upon arrival at Casa San Pablo after 3 hours on the road.

Horsing around with Woody Woodbunny. “Don’t give me that wooden stare!”

Checking out my shots.

Staring up at the moon at the end of the day.

This is the life… zzzzzzzzzzz.

Afterwards Leigh and I agreed that we’re really getting old. More and more we’re enjoying these relaxing, stress-free road trips instead of a frenetic weekend on the town.

More pics from my camera and Leigh’s at McMultiply.