Friday, June 24, 2005

[Blog Entry] Otolod, Visit, Sleepless in Manila, The Anti-Fanfiction Wagon


Our driver has this penchant for suddenly stopping in the middle of our destination, unannounced, to find a place to pee and shit. I was heading to the post office last Thursday when our driver suddenly took a detour to our cousin’s convenience story.

“Otolod,” he said, to justify the sudden interruption in our journey.

“Otolod?” I asked. I thought perhaps he meant “utot” (“to fart”) and said it with a provincial accent.

“Otolod,” he replied. I still didn’t get it.

“Yung otolod. Sa tindahan.” (The otolod. From the shop.) I was still baffled and didn’t know whether he wanted to pee, shit, or a combination of the two. He read my baffled expression and repeated it again.

“Otolod. Auto-lod. Oto-load.”

Now I got it. Auto-load, which is the electronic service of providing credits for mobile phones, because if there’s any country that excels in micro-currency, it’s the Philippines. I mean where else does one find peddlers selling cigarettes by the stick? Or selling cellphone prepaid cards as low as P30 (roughly $0.50)?


I took a day off yesterday, but it really wasn’t much of a day-off since I had to go to my alma matter to perform an errand for the office.

Apparently, a lot can change in one year. New buildings are up, the school has new policies, and more importantly, all the familiar faces are gone. Everyone was a complete stranger, and I wasn’t thankfully accosted for not wearing my school ID because the school year had just begun and not everyone possessed one yet.

I think more than the place, your school is determined by the social atmosphere, by the people you know and the people who know you. Quite frankly, it’s become a duller place when you have no one to talk to.

I did meet some familiar faces, although one was rushing off to class, while another clearly wanted to get away from me once we said our hi’s and hellos.

On a side note, I also took the time to search for the lost Gayuma, to no avail. I know it’s relocated somewhere, but I don’t know their contact number or address.

My favorite Internet Café, E-click, has apparently gone out of business as well. There goes my cheap, Linux-based DSL Internet café. You will be missed. Katipunan seems to be eradicating the past sooner than other places.

Sleepless in Manila

I’ve actually been so busy (not necessarily because of office work) that I’ve probably had 12 hours of sleep over the span of three days. Power failures, storms, and gaming type has consumed so much of my time that I’m starting to feel the fatigue.

On a side note, I was offered coffee last night and I normally don’t drink coffee. When I was ten and visiting the US, we had a detour to Starbucks and had my first real taste of coffee. I didn’t like it and felt dizzy. I added cream, then sugar, then more cream and sugar. I still didn’t like it and had a headache for the rest of the day. I never drank coffee ever since.

Twelve years later, I thought it was time to break that taboo. I tasted the coffee and didn’t like it. I added cream then tasted it. Still not to my taste. Then I added sugar. Sorry, still no good. I sipped more just in case I’d change my mind. I’ve drank lots of disgusting and repulsive things in my life after all. Nope, coffee definitely isn’t my thing. I’d rather have a cup of chocolate which can kill me.

Interestingly enough, I felt sleep shortly afterwards. Caffeine, apparently, doesn’t do much for keeping me awake.

The Anti-Fanfiction Wagon

Here is a rant by writer Robin Hobb with regards to fanfic.

Honestly, I find some parts a bit on the extreme side (since I'm more of the in-between mentality or that there are good and bad points in most stuff), but she does raise valid points.

It's interesting to see how pro-fanfic groups outright curse her, or ignore selected parts of her text and focus on the parts they are vehemently against (despite the fact that she is misinterpreted at certain parts by some people because of either a failure to read the whole thing or a failure in their understanding).

Of course don't get me wrong. There are also certain things to criticize, especially since Hobb tries to phrase it in the way of absolutes. And I think some readers should understand that it's exagerrated to prove a point.


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