#30DayWritingChallenge: My worst birthday.

Day Eight: My worst birthday.

I drew a blank on this one.

I can’t say I’ve had a bad birthday, ever. Boring birthdays, maybe; but never bad. The normal personal Mercury Retrograde field that surrounds me (as in, there is an even tinier Mercury perpetually revolving around me in reverse) seems to give me a break during my birthdays.

So I can list some good birthdays I can remember but, for the life of me, I can’t remember a bad one.

I didn’t grow up with my family throwing birthday parties. We were a lower class family (in the beginning) and we could not afford it. I always thought that birthday parties were a strange amusement held by other people. By the time I was old enough to know why my mother would only cook pancit for the family during my or my siblings’ birthdays, it did not bother me that much.

The strangest birthday I had was when I was thirteen. Previously, my birthdays fell a week before the start of classes. On the year of my thirteenth birthday, the academic calendar changed and moved the beginning of classes a week earlier.

It was my first day in high school. The grade school I went to did not continue to high school, so I was in a new school with a new set of classmated. During the entire day, the teachers kept using my birthday as an example for the little forms we submit that has our personal information.

“So if today was your birthday…” the teachers would begin. I was amused and uncomfortable in case they found out that someone in the class was indeed celebrating his birthday and every subject from that point on will have a five-minute interruption as everyone sang “Happy Birthday”.

Good thing that never happened.

When I became an adult, I started celebrating my birthdays either by inviting some close friends over, or by going off the grid and disappearing for a day.

Birthdays are strange days. A part of me is always amused at how another part of me stresses out days before it arrives and plans out what to do. I mean, for the rest of the world, who cares if it was your birthday, right? One can spend his entire birthday sleeping and it will hardly make any difference in the larger scheme of things.

But fuck the larger scheme of things. One great thing about the human experience is how easily we can overlook that and just think about ourselves. Birthdays are wonderful!

Anywho. Today is the birthday of several friends. Maligayang bati, Alek, Jes, Randy, at James!

Shinji holding a birthday cake.

Image of Shinji Ikari holding a cake was taken from Tumblr.

#30DayWritingChallenge: The stories behind my profile pictures.

30-Day Writing Challenge

Early last month, I came across this 30-Day Writing Challenge graphic. Apparently, it was a piece of paper that was handed out during the recent Philippine Literary Festival (which I missed, huhuhu).

I’ve meant to try this challenge sooner. But I kept procrastinating until I thought, “Fuck this. I’ll start in October.”

So, hey. It’s October now. And here we go.

World of DC All Star Fun Run.

Most of us, at one point or another, wanted to be superheroes. Super powers, fighting villains, wearing costumes. Sure, none of us were born from another planet or are an Amazon princess or are genius martial artist billionaires in real life. Real-life villains aren’t as clear-cut as those in comics.

But maybe we can wear the costumes.

So two weekends ago, I was invited by a friend for a press launch of the World of DC All Star Fun Run. The fun run is part of the celebration of the 80th anniversary of DC Comics.

What’s cool about the fun run is how the singlets were designed after some of the most prominent members of the Justice League: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, and Green Lantern.

World of DC All Star Fun Run singlets

Not only are the singlets designed after these heroes, an extra accessory is also added per design. The Batman, Flash, and Green Lantern singlet includes masks of the respective characters, Wonder Woman has her golden tiara, and Superman has a small, wearable cape.

World of DC All Star Fun Run freebies

Imagine you and several comic book fan and superhero geek friends joining the fun run, wearing similar costumes. Then multiply that by at least a thousand. Say you’re a fan of Green Lantern (my favorite of the five Justice League heroes): It’ll be pretty cool running with other people who love the same character you do, AND are wearing the same green singlet. It’s not just a fun run, it’s a comic convention on running shoes.

More information about the World of DC All Star Fun Run can be read in the official World of DC Philippines website.

World of DC All Star Fun Run poster

The World of DC All Star Fun Run will be on April 18, 2015 at the SM by the Bay, SM Mall of Asia. Registration can be done online in the World of DC website or through Chris Sports outlets in SM North EDSA, SM Mall of Asia, Festival Mall, and Glorietta 3.

Philippine history as told by #RP612fic.

One of my favorite Twitter memes happens every year during the Philippine Independence Day.

#RP612fic (Republic of the Philippines June 12 fiction) was the brainchild of Paolo Chikiamco in 2009. During Independence Day, Twitter users post single-tweet stories of alternate histories of the Philippines.

Coming up with a good story in less than 140 characters (the hashtag should be included in the tweet) is quite challenging, but a lot of Twitter users rise up to the challenge admirably. You see tweets referencing famous (and not-so-famous) historical events, reimagining historical figures interacting with modern technology, and even re-imagining Filipino literary works (like the Rizal novels, Florante at Laura, or Ibong Adarna). A lot of the tweets are pop cultural mash-ups, but some remain true to the speculative fiction roots of the meme (like this beautifully illustrated story from Gerry Alanguilan).

This is the second year I’ve joined #RP612fic. Since it’s often difficult searching through the Twitter archives, I’m posting the tweets I posted this year:

  • “Yes, it was me who did it,” admitted the tearful senator on national television. “I hereby render my resignation.” #RP612Fic *
    1:03 AM 12 Jun 2014

* I should’ve used “tender”, not “render”; but I rarely bother editing my tweets.

  • 2054: Filipino netizens celebrate “Matuwid” PNoy, the inspiring leader who tamed Philippine politics and restored public trust. #RP612fic
    5:45 AM – 12 Jun 2014
  • Archaeologists puzzled over the fossil skeleton recovered from a Benguet mine. It appeared human-like, except for the horse skull. #RP612fic
    2:27 PM – 12 Jun 2014
  • After a momentous Vatican decision, the Philippines remained the only nation that outlawed divorce. #RP612fic
    2:35 PM – 12 Jun 2014
  • During his oath-taking speech, former actor Pio Pascua came out as the first gay president in Asia. #RP612fic
    2:38 PM – 12 Jun 2014
  • After heated discussions and (a some moments of physical violence), Congress was still divided on the National App Bill. #RP612fic
    2:50 PM – 12 Jun 2014
  • Experimental psychic beacons gathered Leftists in Santolan, to be gassed by the military. It was known as the 1986 EDSA Massacre. #RP612fic
    3:31 PM – 12 Jun 2014
  • The long-abandoned pit in Ortigas is deathly quiet. Except for an occasional hiss, like from a giant snake. #RP612fic pic.twitter.com/AZGkXGtSUg **
    6:00 PM – 12 Jun 2014

** This had the most favorites and retweets from my #RP612fic posts (among them Paolo Chikiamco — I’m still a little giddy from it). Probably because of the reference I made to an Ortigas urban legend that was very popular during the 1990s. The idea of using this construction site has been in my mind for some time now; it was fortunate that I passed by the area yesterday and I was able to take a photo to accompany my story.

  • The giant kaiju is destroying Manila.

    “Mary, help us,” whispers the General as he activates the Monolith. #RP612fic pic.twitter.com/CTtiqsfLRB
    6:22 PM – 12 Jun 2014

  • Rumors were confirmed! It was revealed that VPres Enrile, grandson of the former Senator, was actually JP Enrile in a cloned body. #RP612fic
    8:38 PM – 12 Jun 2014
  • https://twitter.com/crazyangelblue/status/477067460441804800

  • Little Pepe was grounded after his mom found out that her favorite pair of Manolo Blahnik was thrown in the Pasig River. #RP612fic
    9:10 PM – 12 Jun 2014
  • https://twitter.com/crazyangelblue/status/477075363856928768

  • “My phone was stolen,” explained Emilio Jacinto when his intimate videos with Andres Bonifacio became the latest public scandal. #RP612fic ***
    9:31 PM – 12 Jun 2014
  • https://twitter.com/crazyangelblue/status/477080787591102465

*** Because I think they are among the cutest slash-pair from the Philippine revolution.

As much fun as it is writing tweet-length fiction, what’s even better is reading through the various submissions: laughing at the historical jokes, being satisfied at noticing the references, and admiring the creativity of many Filipinos on Twitter.

Thank you, Paolo Chikiamco, for coming up with #RP612fic. It’s a great way to celebrate Independence Day, whether you believe in Philippine independence or not.

Pinoy animation at the CCP on October 27.

And once again real life has caught up with my blogging and effectively stopped me from continuing the 3–day drawing challenge. That project will be put on hold for now.

In the meantime, why don’t you watch some local animated films for free at the CCP this Saturday?

CCP Alternative Cinema: PINOY ANIMATION!
October 27 (Saturday) from 1pm onwards.

Featuring “A Trick Or Treat Festival”. Admission is FREE!

In cooperation with the Animation Council of the Philippines.

The Ghostwriter
The Ghostwriter by Joey Agbayani.

Program A: “Trick or Treat Fest 1”

* PINA PRANING by Wendeline Dee U. Enrera
* ESKEYP DA PEYT by Charlie P. Bolalin
* SI DIEGO AT ANG HALIMAW DAGAT by Kei Anne Uchida
* KALARO by Girlie A. Palo
* AYOKO NA by Christopher C. Asa
* A SHORT MESSAGE by Kenny Lyn Tai
* THE GHOSTWRITER by Joey Agbayani
* LUCHI by Celine Yao / Jonel Factor
* GUNI-GUNI by Carin Isabel T. Jimenez
* KALAPIT BAHAY by Valroman R. Francisco
* CARROT SERIES by Kenny Lyn Tai
* ARAW AT GABI by Nelson B. Caliguia, Jr.

Program B: “Trick or Treat Fest 2”

* LOLA by Joey Agbayani
* THE SPIDER & THE FLY by Kenny Lyn Tai
* WHEN ALMA DIED by Richmond Wesley Ruiz Tan
* SAVE ME!!! by Ramon del Prado
* THE TEAR STEALER by Frederic James F. Declaro
* KATCHATORE by Ivan Despi
* WORSHIP THE WILL by Ian Loreňos
* “CLOSE-UP” TVC by Marcelo William W. Muňoz
* ISANG ARAW, MAY HALIMAW… by Antonio Jose H. Cadiz
* SWEET CHEEKS (“E”) by Juan Alcazaren
* SQUARE by Efren R. De Guzman, Jr.
* ALKOHOL by Mark Galvez / Dustin Uy
* SAME GROUND by Marvin C. Pila
* TUMATAKBO by Dennis E. Sebastian
* CLOWNES by Neil Paul B. Molina
* OLIVETTE, VIOLETTE by Rafael A. Palcon, Jr.
* OVER THE RAINBOW by Delma Kryll Baluyot
* A DAY IN THE LIFE OF GLORIA ARROVO: “IMPERIALIST’S PUPPET” (PART 1: EXPANDED VALUE ADDED TAX) by RJ Mabilin
* SANAYAN LANG ANG PAGPATAY by Gil Joseph A. Sanchez