Catching Up and Weighing In

Last night my friends from elementary and high school threw a surprise despedida (going-away) party for Alma, who will be flying off to Copenhagen to work there for two years. The thing about get-togethers when people haven’t seen each other for a long while is that most of the conversation starters are about personal appearance, about how much one has changed (or hasn’t changed). People kept telling me how slim I’d gotten. Can I say EGO BOOST!? Not that I don’t already enjoy working out hard, but seriously this gives me added motivation to continue what I’m doing and drop the last ten pounds to get to the so-called “ideal weight.”

Check out this photo from 2005 (okay, I look thinner in this photo), then this photo from October 2006, then this photo from last night. I’m thinner in the photos from October because I was strung out from the NRSW Bollywood competition, but I regained some weight (binging due to work stress) over the rest of that month and half of November before I came back to my senses.

So, of course, after I got all those compliments about my weight loss, I got myself stuffed on the buffet. Oh, dear.

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I’m Late!

I’ve punched in late twice this week, and while that may be partially my fault, I still can’t help being a little pissed off at the circumstances surrounding my tardiness. (This is also known as the pass-the-buck defense. Ü)

THURSDAY MORNING: I left the house at 8:20am but was confident that I could be at work by 9am sharp. After all, I was going to use a route that by that time would not be an exhaust-choked parking lot for fuming drivers. Or was I?

I sped along merrily and was in the general area of my office building by 9:55am. All I had to do was make one u-turn at the intersection of Ortigas and Roosevelt and I would be home-free. And that would take what, three minutes tops?

Some genius (note the sarcasm) thought it would be great to lay cement on Santolan Road and block off an entire lane during rush hour on a weekday. This caused the traffic to back up all the way to my little u-turn, and it took me a friggin’ 20 minutes to get from one side of the road to the other. I was stranded right in front of my office roaring in frustration because I could have turned the engine off and made a mad dash across Ortigas to punch in.

THIS MORNING: Only a few of you may be aware of this, but I’m required to report for work on Saturday mornings. This morning I took my damn sweet time getting ready because my mom had checked us in to Crowne Plaza, a mere 10 minutes’ drive to the office. Of course, I forgot to factor in unexpected delays, like the slowdown in traffic on EDSA because part of the road was closed off for cementing. I timed in a mere 2 minutes after the grace period for lateness expired, which is more irritating than being a clear 15 minutes late.

I should learn my lesson (and it’s a painful one because I’m gonna get fined for being late). More road-blocking road-building projects from incumbent officials looking for reelection are inevitable. While roads being closed off may be out of my hands, at least I can spare myself some stress by giving myself some lead time getting to work.

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Jammed: Body Jam 39 Launch

Over the past week, a number of Fitness First Philippines branches launched the newest Les Mills group fitness program releases. My favorite program among them is BodyJam (as if my regular readers didn’t already know), and last month I wrote a preview for the latest release, BodyJam 39.

I did say I’d hold back on judging the quality of this newest release until I’d seen it in full. Last Wednesday was the first time I did the complete release, at the Fitness First SM North EDSA branch. It was a pretty jampacked class (pun may be intentional) since the only other branch that had launched it earlier was the Fitness First Plus branch in RCBC, where regular members couldn’t enter. In fact, it was so crowded that I kept stepping on other people’s toes and couldn’t quite get full extension on the armlines. I also attended a launch class at the ABS-CBN branch last night, and while not as tight for space as Wednesday’s launch, the crowd response was just as favorably strong, if not even more so.

Some impressions of each block of choreography and music:


  • Canned Heat – Jamiroquai: Gets you into the dancing mood with retro-disco moves using choreo quite different from the two previous releases.
  • Isolations

  • Buttons – The Pussycat Dolls: Not only sexy, but it really isolates and warms up those shoulders and hips.
  • BollyJam

  • Mundian To Bach Ke – Panjabi MC / The Power Of Bhangra (vs. Motivo) – Snap!: “We’ve taken Bollywood and put it into BodyJam. The result — BollyJam!” This was a fun first cardio block with very energetic choreo taken from Indian dance. I only wish it were longer!
  • Reggaeton

  • Hips Don’t lie – Bamboo – Shakira feat. Wyclef Jean: Starts off very simply, but with a tricky heel-toe combo toward the end, I like the challenge this track presented.
  • Latin

  • Boom Boom – Chayanne: Middle-of-the-pack choreo, rather forgettable. Previous Jam releases had much stronger, more memorable Latin tracks, but I guess with a program nearing its 10th year (the upcoming BodyJam 40 marks that anniversary), BodyJam is bound to have a dud or two sometime.
  • Recovery

  • Deja vu – Beyonce feat. Jay Z: Recovery? What recovery? You could take this one easy, but with hiphop choreography this good I just had to break out. Ü
  • Dance4Life

  • Mesmerized – Faith Evans / Sexy Back – Justin Timberlake / S.O.S. – Rihanna / London Bridge (Oh Shh) – Fergie / Dance4Life – Tiesto feat. Maxi Jazz / Love Sensation ’06 – Loleatta Holloway: Great cardio block! The choreography is challenging enough if you want to push yourself and your heartrate through the roof, but it’s broken down very well. Best of all, it doesn’t seem like a workout, but rather like a dance party. I still hate the London Bridge portion though, but maybe the hootchie roll will grow on me.
  • Groove Down

  • I’ll Do 4 U – Father M.C.: After smashing yourself doing the Dance4Life block, the groove-down will be a welcome relief. It’s a bit too simple for my tastes, however, because at that point I still feel like dancing and there’s just a lot of stretching in this track.

Overall, it’s a great workout that’ll challenge fitness levels, but that’s why I like doing BodyJam: it gives me an opportunity to dance my heart out while helping me reach my fitness goals. Ü

UPDATE: I’ve recently gotten hits for BodyJam 40, which is three months down the line for us here in the Philippines. However, it’s launching sooner in other countries, so here’s the sizzler/teaser for BodyJam 40.

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Dateless but not Desperate

I forgot to text you, but were you on some dating show on the radio last week? — a friend’s text message

Yes, embarrassingly so. Ü It was the premiere episode of “Dateless and Desperate” on RX 93.1’s All Access from 3 to 6pm on Fridays. I don’t know what possessed me to agree to call in and join it, but in doing so I became the first searcher for the segment, which Rico and Gelli had resurrected. (Useless piece of trivia: one of my old high school batchmates Georgina was also a searcher on the show back when Jude Rocha used to host the afternoon block.) Little did I think that it’d have so much entertainment potential. At least, for me.

I wasn’t looking for a date that Friday, actually, but I thought it’d be interesting to get my voice on the radio. To get people to call in, Gelli asked me to give out my Friendster profile information so people could search for me; within minutes, my Friendster profile began receiving hits from people all over the Philippines, and I was getting friend requests and messages from people I didn’t know (naturally).

And then when the searchees started calling in, oh Lordy! With no face to put to the voices, naturally all we had to judge them was on what they said — and how they said it. I was on an instant messenger service chatting with someone and we just couldn’t help ourselves, being the Mean Girls we are.

On Searchee #1 (sa Fil-Chinese guy from Florida spending three months in Manila):
Noelle: ayoko dito
Louise: fake accent
Louise: poser
Louise: yak
Noelle: call center agent!
Louise: talaga!
Louise: he just woke up!
Noelle: he just woke up pa nga!
Louise: agent nga nga nga!
Noelle: ahahahhahaah night shifT!!!!!11111lolololol

I don’t have a problem with call center agents and the accents they learn because it’s part of a very decent job, but I do have problems when I think people are claiming to be what they’re not. Particularly when you can’t decide whether your accent is Californian or Texan.

On Searchee #2 (a magazine editor working in Ortigas):
Louise: not this one, dude
Noelle: of course not!
Louise: magazine editor?
Louise: that’s a tragedy
Noelle: he’s better at writing than speaking and listening
Noelle: defecultes in layf [difficulties in life]
Louise: shyemay
Noelle: bye bye searchee #2

OK, so I’m picky with accents. Sue me.

On Searchee #3 (works for a corporation in Ortigas):
Louise: oh noes
Louise: waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah
Noelle: hehehehehhe
Noelle: oh oh oh
Louise: bor happing [bar hopping]
Noelle: hahahahah
Louise: what’s that?
Noelle: cheeell [chill]
Louise: barok
Noelle: mosti en eeestwud [mostly in Eastwood]
Louise: paano yan, ate?
Louise: kadiri all three
Noelle: he dated a commercial model daw.
Louise: pf syndrome!
Noelle: fatay tayo dito
Noelle: I would prefer to pack in my chest?!
Louise: lutong ng vowels.
Noelle: weT?
Louise: what the?!?
Noelle: sabi nya “wet?” for “what”
Louise: fibe
Noelle: sheeeeet
Louise: cober voi [cover boy]

Hopeless, right? So when Gelli asked me which one I’d pick, I said, “Do I really have to choose? *sob*”

So I picked the one with the accent I think is fake. Maybe he’s NOT a faker or whatever. We’re supposed to talk between the two of us and set a date. I told him I was busy over the weekend. I don’t know if he’s going to call me again, and the truth is I don’t really care. I’m not desperate. Ü

The Two Halves of 2006

I’ve been reading over my posts from the first half of 2006 to avoid the recency effect when I start writing about how my year was. My 2006 can actually be divided into two distinct halves.

The first half of 2006 was all about introspection: what I’d do after school, then deciding to find a job, and finally figuring out my qualifications.

The latter half of 2006 was all about doing: I discovered a passion for dancing that I’d never thought I had, and found that auditioning and performing was the perfect cure for my stage fright. I also got my first job, and am quickly realizing that I don’t want to be just behind the scenes.

I learned a lot about myself last year, and am truly curious about what God has in store for me, based on the above developments. I hope I can recognize the steps to take so I can find God’s true calling and purpose for me; I know that when I start pursuing that, I’ll also find happiness.

SELECTED NEW YEAR’S POSTS FROM MY LINK LIST: Chinchin makes personal fashion resolutions for 2007, Jong and Ganns redesign, Ade makes some retarded resolutions, and Brownpau and Gelli leave us on the edge of our seats for their promised future posts. Ü

What did I do over New Year’s weekend? Ü

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