alizarin crimson


I would just like to interrupt my blogging break…

To announce that my blog…

turns 2 today! Woo-hoo!!

With 167 posts (including this) and 38,069 hits so far… OMP gears up for hopefully more and more years of happy blogging ahead.

Happy 2nd Birthday, OMP!!!

__

~~photo credit: richard forward

Advertisements

I spent an afternoon in Tokyo today.

Little Tokyo, that is in Pasong Tamo, Makati.  It is right beside Plaza Fair, and the old Makati Cinema Square.

You know you’ve arrived in Little Tokyo once you spot the earthy orange torii arch at Pasong Tamo (Left).

I went there in search of this Japanese grocery store that some Pinoy otakus on the web were blogging about, called the Choto Shop. Items they said could be bought at Php75 only.  Since I need some supplies for my FooDorama Challenge, I decided to try out this much-talked about shop, too.

I set a date for my adventure to Little Tokyo. I chose this day, a Monday since it was my day-off.

The atmosphere in Little Tokyo can be a bit intimidating if you went there without any purpose or agenda. Good thing I knew what I was looking for.

Choto Shop was easy to find. Even if the attendants were Pinoys and the shop was located in my own country, I still felt like I entered a strange foreign land.  There were a handful of Japanese customers around and almost everyone was talking in Japanese.

Lost in translation: There were a few signs in English translating the products on the shelves.  You can either guess the contents of a package or just ask for assistance.

However, I must have come on a bad time since all the things I was looking for were not available on this day.  For example, I had wanted to buy Morinaga ice cream that blogger Garando was talking about. But most of their refrigerator shelves were empty.  Supplies were coming in later in the day. The shop maybe called Choto (“wait” in English) but I didn’t expect I would do exactly that.

I was a bit disappointed because I thought I had come a long way for nothing.  I do understand that items at Choto are limited to products only worth Php75.  And their items do run out fast.

It was a good thing that there was this one attendant who helped me out. She said that maybe I should try the other Japanese grocery shop just around the corner. You mean, there’s another one? My hopes were raised as she gave me the name and location of the other shop.

Maybe my day wasn’t such a waste after all…

To be continued in Part 2: Yamazaki Grocery

(Note: This is a continuation of An Afternoon in Little Tokyo)

As it turned out, my day had not been a waste of time! I initially thought my adventure in Little Tokyo (Pasong Tamo, Makati) would result to a write-up about Choto Shop. I ended up discovering and liking Yamazaki Grocery instead!

Yamazaki Grocery was just around the corner from Choto, along Fernando St., across the side entrance of Plaza Fair.

Boy, was I like a kid in a candy shop (or in our context, a small kid in a fastfood burger joint)… Store attendants were helpful and courteous, too.

All the sauces I need! Even if their products were costlier than Choto, I found and bought all the items in my list! They even have real naruto (NOT the anime, mind you) – wow!

Grateful that everything was spelled out in English including their prices –whew!

Some of the items I bought from Yamazaki: aonoriko, bonito shavings, and adzuki beans.

They have a restaurant where you can unwind after shopping. They serve authentic Japanese dishes at affordable prices (I mean compared to the ones at the malls).

This is their take-out delivery menu (click pic for a better read). Mmm, if only I live near Makati.

Yamazaki made my afternoon in Little Tokyo absolutely worthwhile. Once I use up the items I bought, I am definitely going back! Arigato gozaimasu, Yamazaki!

Aside from blogging, I also spent part of my leisure time FaceBooking… I like posting links to interesting videos and features especially about art and creative works so I could share them with friends and family.  I just think it would be a waste if I don’t share them as well here.

I found these stop-motion animation videos.  There were a lot of them out there but these were the 3 most interesting works that I found so far. Hope you enjoy them!

3) Run, Little Pink Pig, Run!

This fascinating animation is a bit too long but the fact it was mainly done by only one person using hundreds of pix is admirable enough. Bravo!

2) Pixelized Post-its: Deadline

A group project from some art students using post-its as pixels. Nifty!

1)  Graffiti Animation: MUTO

I like Italian graffiti artist BLU (not as much as Banksy though). But this animation video must have been a lot of hard work for him, considering that he had to work outdoors and under the sun. I know I wouldn’t last that long.

More art finds to come!

I say it’s a ‘semi’ obsession because it is not something I’m losing sleep over.  It’s more like a silly hobby really.

I think a lot of tweeps like me are also into this new silly hobby brought about by these ever-changing forms of technology.  I believe it is so novel that they haven’t had a name for it yet.  It’s about collecting replies from celebrities or what I call ‘celeb-retweets‘ (whether it be via twitter or from FaceBook)…

I already talked about it in my post about John Cusack. That one was something I was so excited about because it was the first one that came from someone I truly admire.  But I got other RTs from other celebs, too…

As I said, I know that this is just silly and fun! While others are wasting whiling away their time collecting stuff for virtual games like pet society or farmville (which I don’t do), collecting celeb-retweets is MY kind of ‘game.’ It requires a bit of strategy, wit, and luck, too.  You have to out-do your online opponents which happen to be other tweepers vying for these celebs’ attention as well.

But I don’t go around tweeting ALL the celebs just for the heck of it. I just choose those whom I like or respect the most.  Besides, not all of them tweet back. They don’t have to and you got to respect that. But how do I know if they’re the real thing, and not written by some secretary or their PAs? I guess if you read their tweets, you would know. It’s the tone that you ‘hear’ in their statements that tell you it’s them. Aside from that, if it’s a verified account, then there you go.

Here is (so far) my ‘collection’ of celeb-retweets. I show them off with the level of snooty enthusiasm that is akin to that of Sesame Street’s Bert when he showed off his shiny bottle-cap collection (Oh, Figgy Fizz! hehe):

1) Judah Friedlander: World’s “Greatest” Champ

judahfb

June 19, 2009: I managed to eke out a birthday greeting from actor/stand-up comedian Judah Friedlander via FB.  Judah plays “Frank Rossitano,” the trucker-hat wearing writer of NBC’s 30 Rock.  He is swell guy who doesn’t let fame get into his head (unless when he’s boasting off his feats as the World Champ). If he had a chance to talk to his fans, he would – just like any regular guy (You could catch him online via FB and he would ‘hey’ back if you say ‘hi’).  Totally cool. Thanks, Judah. You are truly the World Champ!

2) Eoin Colfer:  Teacher to Teacher Talk

colfertweetsback

Aug. 24, 2009: Eoin Colfer is an Irish author; he was commissioned to write the 6th installment of “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy,” but he is best known as the creator of the famous Artemis Fowl series.  Though he does not tweet as much as the other celebs, he was kind enough to take time to answer a question I posed (which he answered after the day I sent it).  I do agree with his advice. And I also admire teachers like him who became writers.  They give me hope that someday I can accomplish the same feat. Gracias, Mr. Colfer!

3) Amber Benson: An awesome Greeting from a Buffy Royalty

08-22-2009_23-29-44

May 8, 2009: I already mentioned about my love for the Buffy TV series in my previous post. Even if the series was over, countless of BTVS fans like me are happy that some of its stars are on Twitter.  Amber Benson (who played Tara) was one of the first (if not, THE first) BTVS alumni who got into Twitter.  She DMed (‘direct messaged’) me as soon as I started following her with the tweet above.  Of course, I was starstruck! Imagine, Tara from Buffy? She tweeted ME, a die-hard Buffy Fan?  Not getting it? Believe me, in Buffy-verse this is something that reaches major levels of awesomeness… Thank you, Amber!

4) Julie Benz: Scoring a Scoop from a Dexter Star!

julietweet1

Sept. 4 2009:  Julie Benz (who played “Darla” in both Buffy and Angel; currently in the show Dexter as “Rita”) is a real sweetheart.  I like her. She’s polite and sensitive.  I was able to get a ‘scoop’ (ahem) for the upcoming Season 4 of Dexter (which will start on Sept. 27) wherein she revealed that she will be doing a bit of singing! (A week later, TV Guide magazine posted this article regarding it). But really, if you watched Angel, you would agree with me that this talented lady DOES have a pretty voice.  Frankly speaking, I don’t watch “Dexter” much but now… I will.  Danke, Julie!

5) John Cusack: No. Thank YOU, Mr. Cusack…

2ndtwitexchangewithjohnAug. 23, 2009: Yes. Lightning DOES strike twice (And hopefully even more than twice).  In my second retweet from him, John Cusack thanked me… Again, let me reiterate this: He. John Cusack. Thanked. Me. For watching his HBO dramatic movie, Jack Bull.  And with three exclamation points to boot!  Sweet!  Haha!  I should be the one thanking him for coming up with Jack Bull. It’s really one of my favorites among all his movies (again, the key here is sincerity.  He knows if you’re bullsh#tting him so you better make it real if you want him to retweet back).  Too bad, Max and Get Outta the Boat are not readily available here, though.

Well, that’s my bottle-cap, I mean, celeb-retweet collection so far! Too bad, I can’t sell them on ebay. Hmm…

smallribbonI first saw John Cusack in Better Off Dead.  From that moment on, I was instantly smitten.  He was funny and had that goofy, likeable charm that easily translates to a dependable bestfriend-cute boyfriend material.  And he wasn’t a bad actor, taking his craft seriously—the fact that he survived the 80’s Brat Pack was let alone a big feat, for while the careers of his contemporaries stumbled and faltered – his saw smooth sailing with occasional minor bumps along the way.  He can play the Hollywood game but he can pretty much steer his own ship, too.  He valued his privacy—something that I find truly cool and which I unconsciously emulated —one’s private life is his own business and not yours. He is not the type who would kiss and tell (especially about his current paramours) which I find extremely classy and manly.  But we do know he is loyal to his family and friends – making sure to include them in his successes, happiness, and plans.  And johnqsackhe’s obviously smart, too.  He is very vocal and genuinely concerned about real issues – political and social.  He just doesn’t do the talk he does them, too.  And unlike other celebrities, he does them without so much fanfare.  Can you blame me for sticking by him – through thick and thin?  There’s this FB group (of which of course I am a member) whose name sums it all up– “All Men Pale in Comparison to John Cusack.”

Just like any other normal fan – I look him up from time to time on the web but only for the purpose of getting some updates (e.g. imdb) and ‘stalk’ him in the typical kind of way – not the freaky kind.  There’s not much info on him though – I mean compared to uberstars like Pitt and Clooney.  He does have his blog in Huffington Post and his myspace site but there was no possible chance of any sort of interaction that I was wishing for.  So his recent forte into the twitterverse was something I rejoiced about (Twitter, love na kita– srsly grabe!).

Thanks to actor/comedian, Rob Corddry whose account I was following before John’s. Rob C. outed John’s supposedly ‘secret’ twittername with the tweet, “This is proof Screwheads. Cusack is @shockozulu. Now can we talk about something else? http://twitpic.com/9urha (You see, during that time, Rob and John were wrapping up their latest movie, “Hot Tub Time Machine”— yes, no joke, that is the actual title– in Vancouver so I do know that it was all legit).  I immediately checked it out and much to my utter delight – he was twitting back to his followers!

His tweets were typically Cusack—quick, manic and cryptic most of the time; reflective, cool and savvy on some days.  And so what if he was a bad speller (which was a surprising new thing I found out about him – dysgraphia?), it didn’t bother him… which was cool by me. Right away, I sent him messages, hoping I could get one in return.  He could be generous one day and stingy the next with his retweets.  It was clear to me that this wasn’t going to be easy.

I learned that the best time to get a retweet was when you catch him on-line.  However, I couldn’t get an opening. A lot of his fans—including me– were all vying for his attention.  And not only that, I also couldn’t catch a break — either I’m the one who was busy working or sleeping every time he was twitting or he was the one asleep when it was my turn to tweet.  He preferred to reply to quotes or tweets about Hunter T., politics and social issues (or whatever catches his whim at that moment).  But I can’t pretend that I know anything about those. That would be so fake. I didn’t want to beg either.  Or act like an annoying troll (which some pathetic losers resort into doing) to force an angry retweet out of him (lesson learned, read Trent Reznor’s bitter twitter experience).  I just have to do what I can by being myself.

Nevertheless, I wasn’t going to give up. My motto became Operation Qsack: No Retweet, No Surrender!

Then, one sad day, three days after Cory died, I finally got a chance.  The timing was perfect.  We were both finally on-line at the same time. He was then twitting about presidents (US’ Bill C. and Mexico’s).  I tweeted about what I was feeling at that time. Seconds later, this was what I got:

twitexchangewithjohnq

Aug. 4, 2009: JC sends his condolences via twitter…

My eyes brimmed with tears reading his 6 words.  Even if it wasn’t much, even if he already shifted his attention elsewhere, and to another fan’s twit, it was enough for me.  It was consoling at a time of grief.  It made me feel better.  Like hitting a small jackpot lotto prize.  Yay!

Now that this was over, one short term goal has finally been ticked off.  And as I told my friend sreisaat, “I can now move on with my life.” Haha!

Thanks, John.  You don’t know how much this means to someone like me. Really. And I know it might be a one in a million chance… um, ok, come to think of it — with the help of tags… make that one in a hundred thousand chance for you to be reading this but hey, who knows, right? Dreams CAN come true!

BTW, did I mention that I sooo love you, Twitter? I did but I’ll say it again- I heart Twitter! Thank you so much for making this fangirl super-duper happy!

Up next: An awesome experience with Trent Reznor!

UPDATE:

Well, what do you know? Weeks later I got a second retweet from JC… click here to read about it.  😀

PS. For personal reasons, there may be times my twitter account maybe on lockdown.  If it is,  sorry! I may change also my account in the near future… but I haven’t decided yet so.  Whatev. 🙂

first

Today marks the first anniversary of my blog. Woo-hoo! ( ̄ー ̄)ノノ”” ~clap!clap!clap!~

I remember shedding blood, sweat, and tears setting this all up a year ago, trying to make sense of how things flow in WordPress. I was even thinking of giving up and going back from whence I came (which was blogspot – ugh!).

But I persevered.  And now, it’s still no-regrets-whatsoever.  I like the WordPress community. We really ARE a community in a true sense of the word and am truly appreciative of the constant improvements, messages and support that Matt, Heather, and the guys have been giving to us.  (BTW, I went to check up on my old blog in blogspot just recently and i was really disappointed to see that things haven’t improved at all!).

Anyhoo!

Here are the stats, as of today:

OMP is now a year old with 10,921 hits so far (It had hit the 10,000 mark a week ago–not bad for a personal, no-specific-theme blog— but hey, I can do better…yes i can!).

101 posts have been published (hmm… ‘published’–has a nice ring to it), and 423 spams have tried and failed (yes, I acknowledge these poor souls for even trying, and thank God for twitter, spammers have somewhere else to wreak havoc upon).

Compared to half a year ago, I have three new top posts for now. And they are:

crying time with 1 liter of tears — 1,065 hits; It reached its peak during the time One Liter of Tears was being shown on gma network. People were researching about the story (either that or they’re curious about actor Nishikido Ryo), hence i got some of the traffic flow.  Great show, memorable songs, good response. Hope the Kapuso network would take a hint from this and show more of Ryo ‘s talent in jdoramas like Ryusei no Kizuna and Attention Please.

The Gumasa Beach Experience — 268 hits; Being one of the best kept secrets of Mindanao, Gumasa beach is now slowly permeating into people’s consciouness as one of the loveliest beaches in the south.  I noticed that the hits keep coming in heavily during the summer, too.

Nodame Cantabile: how do you say ‘Gyabo’ in Filipino? — 267 hits; another top post on a jdorama? Well, that’s how it goes, I guess. Pinoy jdorama addicts like me are hungry for information and relying heavily on each other’s blog posts considering that we don’t get details from anywhere else.  We are a desperate lot, alas…  o(゚д゚o≡o゚д゚)o??? but loud and proud! (btw, hope Hiroshi Tamaki gains weight… as Chiaki, he doesn’t have to use a baton cause he looks like one!–Haha! Just kidding! I love Tamaki and I’ll be posting a special on him soon!).

And I’m still receiving the most visits from these five countries (in their proper order): The US (1,793), the Philippines (1,230), Indonesia (376), Canada (224) and the UK (192).

Cheers to my one year old blog!

゚・:*:・。ヽ(◎´∀`)ノ┌i┐ε-(・ε・´) puff~━congrats, OMP♪゚゚・:*:・。

Next Page »