Wednesday, March 22, 2006

[Blog Entry] Essay Competition, New Soy Flavors, Books!

Essay Competition

The World Bank has announced an International Essay Competition 2006.

It aims to share youth's experiences and ideas on community work and participation in public life.

The Competition is open to participants aged 18 to 25 years of age. Students who are currently taking PhD courses are not eligible to participate.

The topics for the competition are (choose one):

1. How do you contribute to solving community problems?

2. How do you influence decision-making?


· should not be longer than ten (10) pages (4,000 words maximum)

· 1.5 line-spaced

· should be accompanied by an abstract (one-page summary)

Deadline for submission is on 02 April 2006. Essays must be submitted at

$5,000 will be given for the first placer and runners up will receive $1,000.

Full details about the competition are available at the abovementioned website.

Participate now and have your voice heard!

New Soy Flavors

I visited Fruit Magic the other week and they seem to have a new line of Soy drinks, this time in a smaller bottle (350 ml vs 500 ml). New flavors include vanilla loca, ube ole, bubble gum gulp, and capucinno (with the exception of the last, who comes up with these names?).

I've always been a fan of bubble gum, except as a kid, I didn't know that you weren't supposed to swallow the gum. There this one time I visited the doctor, and he gave me a bubble gum flavored vitamin. After that, the only other time I tasted bubble gum was from BIC, which serves bubble-gum flavored yogurt/ice cream. Unfortunately, Fruit Magic's bubble gum gulp isn't what I expected. The soy tastes has dilutted the sweetness, and while overall it's not bad (it's pretty okay actually), it didn't meet my mental expectations for a bubble gum flavored drink.

The other flavor I've managed to taste was vanilla loca. If you've drank Sustagen powedered milk, that's exactly what the drink tastes like, minus the powdery aftertaste. It's okay, but not something I'd want to drink every single day (I go on a steady diet of 500 ml Almond Nut-flavored soy).


My godmother arrived from the US last week, and she brought with her some books I asked her to buy (or rather, asked my mother to ask her to buy). Whenever I deal with my mom and her friends, I expect them to be idiots. As a kid, when I wanted a video game to be bought in the US, it wasn't enough that I'd give them the name: I had to rip out the advertisement on the magazine and send it to them so that they know what to get me.

In this instance, I printed out the pages from the Amazon website. Unfortunately, it's apparently not idiot proof as my godmother not only bought the books that I wanted, but some of the books that Amazon was recommending. And while I appreciate the gesture from my godmother, purchasing those extra books that I didn't necessarily want must have strained her budget.

I think this will be my new curse. Whenever I order books, there will be an unexpected book order (the last time, it was the Shadow Game book which was a romance using psychics as a plot hook). Anyway, here's the list of books that arrived:

Veniss Underground by Jeff Vandermeer
City of Saints and Madmen by Jeff Vandermeer
The Girl in the Glass by Jeffrey Ford
The Etched City by K.J. Bishop
Stranger Things Happen by Kelly Link
Magic for Beginners by Kelly Link
A Princess of Roumania by Paul Park

Three of those books... I didn't plan on having. Guess which ones?


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